#MeToo

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As I was scrolling through my social media feeds today, I saw countless #MeToo statuses. Some stood in solidarity, but far too many indicated that she was a victim of sexual assault or harassment. I was saddened by how many had to post this, but then I thought, those are only the ones speaking up. There are so many other women that are staying silent. And they are more than allowed to. Yes, this movement is meant to bring awareness, but it’s also to give a voice to the voiceless. To the women who don’t feel comfortable or safe sharing their accounts. To the women who have been hurt, objectified, or made uncomfortable or felt unsafe due to a man’s insensitive remarks or actions.

I read many statuses and stories of sexual assault throughout the day. I also spent much of the day reflecting on my own experiences, debating whether or not I also post a #MeToo status. Would people think I was being dramatic? Even though I wasn’t raped, does that constitute a #MeToo status? Would I be discrediting other victims of sexual assault by making a post?

I eventually decided that the answer is no. Not only that, but my thought process is part of why this is an issue. So many of us end up in situations like this and think “I’m just being dramatic” or “Maybe it was my fault,” or “It’s really not that serious.” Guess what. It is a problem, we should give it the attention it deserves, it is serious, and we need to use our voices and our stories to empower women and educate everyone.

So, yes, me too, I’ve experienced it. Me too, I felt embarrassed and still don’t feel comfortable with it, but in order to achieve progress, we must step out of our comfort zone and have those uncomfortable discussions.

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To New Adventures

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I remember heading to the airport after my very last final of college. I was excited to be done with school, and anxious about my next chapter. However, I also remember how quickly and overwhelmingly a fear came over me as I sat at the gate. As a Boston University student from California, I had the privilege of traveling a few times a year, at least to and from home and school. Now that I was done, when would I be able to travel? When would I see an airport next? (Odd fun fact: I love airports) Luckily, my fear proved irrational as I’ve been able to travel a few times this year, whether it be local to Southern California, or back to Boston for my graduation ceremony.

Last month, I found out that my friend Emilie would be visiting Seattle, so I decided to meet her there. In the process of booking my ticket, packing and getting to Seattle, I tried to remember the last time I had been in a city that was completely new to me. Although I had been to LAX over ten times this year, Seattle was my first new city in five years (my last new city was Boston, when I went with my parents to tour BU). There’s something fun about going to a new city. You create all these stories in your head, paint pictures of what the city will look like, imagine what kinds of food you’ll eat, and if you’re like me, spend countless hours trying to define the city’s street style. And no matter how much you think about it and prepare, it’s still pretty different from what you anticipated. I hadn’t had this sensation in so long, and it was honestly so refreshing. So, here’s to hoping for more chances to enjoy new experiences. Below, see a few of my favorite moments from this adventure.

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I didn’t realize how huge Pike Place Market is! My favorite part was definitely going through all the fresh produce. Everything looked so delicious, and they had a much more diverse variety than I expected.

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My friend was staying in Bremerton, so we had to take the ferry into Seattle every day. I’m a huge Grey’s Anatomy fan, and Derek Shepherd had a thing for ferryboats. Naturally, I do as well.

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Just a classic photo of the public market. One thing I did find interesting was the “Meet the producer” sign. On a boat tour, they explained the history of the Pike farmer’s market, and that consumers demanded to meet the producers of the food. Looks like they were onto that farm-to-table trend pretty early on.

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Chihuly glass gardens! This. place. is. stunning. Everything in this museum is made of blown glass. I had seen a Chihuly exhibit in Vegas, but this collection is much more extensive.

Beyond Thankful.

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I always look forward to Thanksgiving. It gives me a chance to slow down, spend time with family and savor the short but sweet moments at home. Thanksgiving often involves time for reflection and thoughts about how blessed we are to have our loving families, but also for the opportunities and friends who shape our lives throughout the year.

2016 has been tumultuous, but it was an incredible year for me personally. I learned so much, laughed to tears countless times, loved endlessly, and truly felt happy.

This year, I’m thankful for:

  • my parents, who put me through 15 and a half years of school and helped me chase my dreams.
  • my friends, who became my family when home was far away.
  • my bosses, who taught me so much and gave me confidence as I start my career.
  • my dog, who loves me unconditionally and greets me so enthusiastically, whether I was away for 2 months or 2 hours.

I have so much more to be thankful for, but I’m going to hold the rest close to my heart. Today, and every day, I am so full of love and happiness. Although today is a special time to reflect and be grateful, remember to take a minute each day and think of how lucky we all are, and what we can do to continue living our best lives.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

love yourself, and love others. hard.

I haven’t posted on here in awhile, but I needed to highlight something.

Suicide. 

It’s a real problem, and from my experience, I would honestly call it an epidemic, especially among young people.

Today I got word that another person from my high school community committed suicide. I didn’t know her personally, but I cheered with her older sister for three years. Her sister was always so welcoming, vibrant and loving, so I could only imagine that this girl was putting out the same image. From what I’ve heard, she was popular, smart, involved in everything, and seemed so happy.

And this is why I’m bringing attention to it. She seemed happy.

You never know what someone is going through, or what they’re thinking. This girl was struggling emotionally for the past year. Her parents knew, and they worked with the school to get her as many resources as she needed. But on the outside, she seemed fine.

I’m glad that my school took the steps to try and help her as much as they could, but it pains me to know that someone can be hurting so much, even with the help she was receiving.

Despite this case, suicide is obviously preventable. Reach out to your friends and family. Tell them how much you love them, and tell them often. Be aware of the things your loved ones say, and offer help when needed. Be there and just show up.

After hearing this kind of tragic news eight different times, one would think it gets easier or you become more dull to it. It doesn’t. Tonight’s news hit me like a giant wave. I actually felt my heart race, my vision became blurry, and I started physically shaking. I felt disabled and couldn’t do anything but text my friends and make sure they were okay.

Resilience is important at a time like this, but so is compassion. I’m mourning the loss of another young life, and feeling the heartache of my high school community from 3,000 miles away. My condolences go out to her family, and everyone who has lost someone important to them.

Although I haven’t struggled with mental health personally, it has touched too many of my close friends and family. It’s not fun for either side, but I can tell you, I promise you, suicide is never the answer. It gets better.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, here are a few resources:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK

TeenLine, an organization by teens to help teens in crisis: 310-855-4673

You can also text TEEN to 839863

Stay strong, stay resilient, but most importantly, look out for one another.

Onward,

Francesca

 

Pretty Fab

IMG_5776Top: Hera Tee by Fabletics | Bottoms: Salar Leggings in Goddess Print by Fabletics | Shoes: Adidas | Bag: Rebecca Minkoff | Sunglasses: Madewell

For those of you that follow me on social media, you know I’m spending this semester in Los Angeles. Life has been pretty amazing here. My school has a “study abroad” program in Los Angeles where we intern and take classes. It’s a great way to learn about the LA landscape and find your fit in the entertainment and/or fashion industry. One of my internships is at Fabletics, which is an athletic apparel brand cofounded by Kate Hudson.

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Kate recently released her lifestyle book, Pretty Happy. Let me tell you, although I’ve been working events around the book release all week, I finally sat down to read it today, and it is so amazing. Kate is such a genuine, real and nice person, and her personality shines through the pages on the book. I highly recommend! Even just a few pages in, I already felt inspired. IMG_5760

Yesterday, I worked a book signing with Kate at the Fabletics store in Woodland Hills. It was so fun to hear from her fans, meet the Fabletics customers, and obviously chat with Kate!

 

Anything But Boring

IMG_5216Hat: Francesca’s Collection | Blouse: Forever21 | Vest and Jacket: Zara | Jeans: Gap | Shoes: Ivanka Trump | Bag: Rebecca Minkoff

I’ve been a big fan of black and white lately, and I like the challenge of mixing different patterns and textures to create an interesting and dynamic look. I believe in the quote, “black is anything but boring.” By adding the right pieces, you can instantly elevate an outfit to become a standout look. In my case, I made a simple blouse more interesting by twisting the front instead of buttoning it straight down, and I had fun with the accessories.

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Interning at a large PR agency, as told by Buddy the Elf

This semester has been an absolute whirlwind. While I’m wrapping up my time in Boston this year, I reflected on my experience at Regan Communications Group. Working at a large agency has been so much fun and provided me with an excellent learning experience. From administrative work to PR 101, I picked up my fair share of lessons and skills.

  1. At a large agency, you wear many hats for many clients. I drafted press releases and media advisories, posted calendar listings, clipped press coverage, worked at events…the list goes on. One minute, I might be pushing out a media advisory about an upcoming fundraiser, while hours later, you could find me staffing a themed event in the Seaport District surrounded by puppies (it’s happened before)! Needless to say I’ve gotten fairly good at juggling! Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 3.32.08 PM
  2. Before interning at Regan, I was slightly terrified to make ~professional~ phone calls. I used to screen callers at a previous internship, but here, I was playing the big leagues and talking to journalists and publishers. Dialing all those digits definitely helped me gain more confidence in my phone etiquette. Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 3.39.27 PM
  3. I even got to spend a few days running around Boston to take photos, pick up products, and run errands. With the large range of tasks I did around the city, I have Boston’s streets memorized like the back of my hand. Also, I may or may not have developed “excellent” pedestrian skills… Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 3.47.47 PM
  4. When staffing events, I learned to be a friendly face as I was the first person that welcomed guests to the venue and got them settled. (This wasn’t hard, obviously, since our events were always fun!)Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 3.54.21 PM
  5. After events, the team would occasionally get dinner together, so I also made sure to polish up my dining etiquette. Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 3.57.33 PM

 

Honestly, the list of things I learned could go on for days. I originally did not plan on interning this semester because of my academic schedule, but I am beyond glad that I did. My most important and meaningful takeaway from working at Regan was the affirmation of the way I feel about public relations: Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 4.02.08 PM