Recently I created my top ten items on my bucket list. For those of you who are unfamiliar, a bucket list is a list of things you want to do before you die (or “kick the bucket”). I’m such an adventure junkie that this actually took some time and thought to create the top ten things I wanted to do for myself. I made that restriction because I could think of hundreds of things I want to do for my family and friends, but I rarely think of things I would do just for me.

10 The Maldives: I first heard about the Maldives thanks to a pair of Victoria’s Secret panties that said “Made in Maldives” on the tag. I googled it and fell madly in love. I grew up visiting Hawaii often, but the Maldives is just beautiful and I absolutely have to get there.

9 Visit Japanese Family: My father’s family in Japan is always coming to the United States to practice their English, but I want to go visit them. I want to try sushi and noodles where they came from and I want to see if the Japanese actually do Sake bombs.

8 Tour Italy as a family: I want my girls to experience their father’s culture first hand to see how rusty his Italian has gotten, meet his extended family, and visit the family vineyards. I think it is important for our family to connect with his background.

7 Purchase a Louis Vuitton handbag without looking at the price tag. I am a collector, but I always shop based on a budget. I’d like to walk in, throw price to the wind, and just buy whatever I want.

6 Live with my family in Paris, France for at least three months. It is important to me that my girls learn about European culture by living there, rather than through books and movies. I want them to experience the world.

5 Own even a small percentage of a company that goes public successfully. To me this is achieving my gold medal in entrepreneurship and I want to experience what it takes to take a company from startup to being publicly traded.

4 Help a celebrity with their comeback successfully. I often tease that I’d love to oversee Lindsay Lohan’s comeback because she is so talented, but I would love to see someone high profile go from rock bottom to being back on top.

3 Live with my family in New York City, New York for at least three months. I love experiencing what it is like to live in big cities and I would want my girls to experience Broadway shows, Central Park, Yankees games, and riding the subway. I absolutely adore the candor of New Yorkers and could live there in a second.

2 Produce a documentary that is screened at the Sundance Film Festival. If it happens to win an award and be about a topic I am passionate about (gay rights, homeless pets, etc.) that would be icing on the cake.

1 Complete my book and have it published. I’d love it if it became a bestseller, but just having a published book would knock it out of the park for me.


Just this past January I stumbled upon the Ogden in downtown Las Vegas. The only thing I knew about the Downtown Project had come from the late entrepreneur Jody Sherman, who raved about the community and what was happening. We had come for a tour, there was one 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom unit available, and I was done. It wasn’t that the unit or the massive balcony were so appealing. It was the energy from the lobby, in the hallways, and in the elevator. I knew in those first ten minutes that this was where I was supposed to be, so I moved in.
Over the past 90 days, I don’t just like where I live. I have fallen so madly in love that I am moving my entire family – husband, two small children, and two chihuahuas into that very two bedroom, two bathroom condo in the heart of downtown from our big fancy house with a three car garage and half acre in the suburbs of Washington state. 

It’s not just the awesome rooftop pool that’s open 24 hours a day or the gym that seems to always have my favorite machine available, but it is the friendly neighbors that are always smiling and open to chat when I step outside my door. It is my husband meeting the Ticket Cake team and asking all kinds of geeky questions about video editing and their pod cast. It is my gay drag queen assistant almost bumping into Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh in the elevator. 

I’ve bumped into and met people whose books I read, reread, and then made notes in when I was creating my own company. I have taken my entire team to these amazing free learning events and skill share classes from people like the CEO of indiegogo.com and Shapeways. The hardest part has been staying focused on what I am working on because these new ideas fuel my entrepreneurial tank. I have finally found entrepreneurial Disneyland and it’s the Ogden in the heart of the Downtown Project.

The saddest part is that about a week after I moved in, the very person who inspired me to move here passed and I only wish he could have seen how good this move has been for me. No matter where he is, I know he is happy I found my entrepreneurial Disneyland.

Wearing my cowboy hat on my patio.

Krista with some of the Digital Royalty team at the Entrepreneur Organization Awards.

Working out in the gym!

“People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully. I’m actually as proud of the things we haven’t done as the things I have done.  Innovation is saying no to 1,000 things.” Steve Jobs (Apple Worldwide Developers’ Conference,1997)

I am a yes man. OK, fine, a yes woman. But you get the idea. I have an internal need to be liked and so I like to say yes. I love the way people’s faces light up when I say yes. It means I have donated time, talents, and treasure to charities that I frankly didn’t know about, let alone care about. It means I have taken on projects I had no business touching and then spent 100 times more effort trying to figure it all out. Now, it hasn’t been all bad. It also means I discovered some pretty cool skills I didn’t even know I had and I’ve had some pretty kick ass adventures along the way, but more often than not, I wind up drowning in some ridiculous thing I should have said no to.

When I was 16, I looked at 32 year olds and thought how grown up they were with their houses, cars, and families. I swore I would never be boring and that by then, I would have figured it all out. The only thing I have figured out, with my own house, cars, and family, is that I am ABSOLUTELY not boring. Thank heavens for that because I sure as hell have not figured the rest out.

About a month ago I had the worst week ever. Yup. The one that results in ugly cries on the phone to people who aren’t entirely sure if your puppy was just hit by a car or your parent died. Thank heavens mine was due to neither of these awful things, but it was just the week from hell. I looked out at my calendar for the next two weeks and there it was: the speaking engagement for a good friend’s leadership conference. I was due to speak about corporate culture and being a savvy business lady right at the time in my life when I was on the floor, with my internal confidence at a zero, and seriously considering quitting my entrepreneurial journey altogether. In that moment, it became crystal clear: I had to say no despite all the circumstances.

My good friend, Shandel Slaten, who taught me saying NO was okay.
It was one of the hardest phone calls I’ve ever made. I knew my friend had given me a huge opportunity. It was the official start to my professional speaking career. What happened if it came again? What happened if our friendship was over? The “What ifs” almost overwhelmed me. 

And in that moment, knowing I was at my rock bottom, she said she understood and was actually worried about me. She supported me and rallied the troops around me, to carry me through the difficult challenges I was having. In fact, she helped me to work through my “yes” problem.

Over the past two weeks I have been working on my “no”. When it is said with a kind heart and the best of intentions, you’d be surprised how understanding people are. 

I have declined the purchase of Girl Scout cookies that would have ruined my healthy eating goals. I have turned away a client that would have sucked every ounce of mojo from me. Most importantly, I turned off my computer and said “no” to working seven days a week. Let’s not go overboard here friends-it was only one Sunday, but that 24 hours was quite nice. Maybe Steve Jobs did know what he was talking about with that whole saying “no” thing?