a moment to reflect

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

In lieu of Winona State University’s graduation today, I felt it appropriate to look back on the past three years since I graduated.

As I see my friends about to embark on adulthood and leave that safety net we know and love call college I can’t help but to think about my humble beginnings. Graduation was an awesome time. I don’t totally remember the ceremony because our student speaker was a mathematics major and more boring than life, plus the speech should have been mine but apparently I added a little “too much” (is that possible) flare to my speech. I digress; graduation is a time that makes you think. Your future is literally on the line and you have the whole world out there in front of you. Graduation means making your mark on a world much bigger than the one you were confined in for the last 4 years.

To my friends near and far, I want you to reflect. Maybe you graduated today, maybe you graduated years ago, it doesn’t matter the date, take a moment. Take a moment in the coming days to think of the journey you have embarked on. Has it changed? What were the obstacles that have been placed in your path? Did they make your plan change? Is the journey worth it? Is your end game still the same? What’s different? Have you acquired anything of importance along the way?

After posing these questions, how do you feel? Can you still see that light at the end of the tunnel glimmering bright?

For me, nothing has changed when it comes to my end game. Of course I am still trying to figure everything out and I’m trying to put the puzzle pieces together. It is going to take a lifetime for me, or anyone for that matter to fully mold the life that they want. I know where is started and I know where I am going. No doubt there have been massive obstacles that have been put in my way, and I hurdled over them. Remember that we all deal with obstacles differently and all of our journeys are different.

While you are on your journey be cognizant of the people you will meet. Take note of everyone you encounter. The guy who is serving you your morning coffee could turn into your best friend. Old friends could come back into your life. New friends will develop that will last a lifetime. Hold on to the friends who turn into family…those friends are the most important and they’re the ones that will turn your life upside down and make this adventure that we call life so worth it.

Maybe it’s been four years since you’ve graduated and you still don’t know what you want to “be when you grow up”, or maybe you do. Either way, we only get one life so maybe sure you surround yourself with people who will make your journey a wild ride!


trains, planes and automobiles

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

What do you think of when you hear the word “train” in a transportation sense? Maybe you think of the metro, subway or Amtrak, but hardly ever does our generation (Millennials) think of the proper term of train. Train, n:a series of railroad cars moved as a unit by a locomotive or by integral motors. I have something new to hit you with when you think of trains, Millennial Trains Project. This is a new initiative that  aims to turn the journey into a mechanism for learning and social change.

Background: A part of the journey the train will visit 7 cities over the course 10 days–that’s a lot of ground to be covering especially when your mode of transportation is a train. The itinerary includes Seattle, Detroit and Cleveland. In each destination, passengers will have 5-6 hours to work on their projects. In between stops, the group will participate in workshops and mentoring sessions to help build on their ideas. I am not entirely sure what happened once the projects are completed and if there is any follow up, that would be interesting to look into.

The real benefit to programs like these might not be the actual projects they spawn, but the people they educate and shape. It’s really interesting stuff, follow the Train’s journey live and learn more about the inspiring entrepreneurs on board.


Let’s talk ball. This past weekend, the opportunity to go to Cooperstown was in our hands and we gladly jumped on that train. Thanks to our friend, Patrick (HSO!) the three of us set out on the journey to Upstate New York last weekend. And as you guessed it, our first stop was Cooperstown. Sure, I love baseball but there is no comparison when it comes to how much Matt loves baseball. Take a peek at the guest blog below from Matt. Matt recaps his visit to the holy land: Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. If you haven’t been and even if you have, he writes it in a fashion that you are enjoying his pilgrimage alongside of us that weekend.

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

my pilgrimage to the baseball mecca

guest blog presented by: Matthew D. Shalbrack
You can find Matt on Twitter: @hamsterjockey; insta: hamsterjockey, make sure you follow him!

As a diehard baseball fan, I had never made the pilgrimage to Cooperstown, New York to visit the National Baseball Hall of Fame and IMG_0400Museum. I’d actually never even been to New York before. How sacrilegious is that? With so much history, tradition and baseball in one place, how had a fan, like myself, never set foot on such sacred grounds?

Well, that all changed the second weekend in June as Kendal Ann, Patrick and I had planned to go up to Upstate New York for a long weekend and made a pit stop in Cooperstown to check out the Baseball Hall of Fame. Let’s just say that I was mesmerized by how much baseball tradition is enshrined within the walls of the Baseball Hall of Fame.

After parking the car and wandering down Main Street, taking in all the sights, sounds and smells of baseball heaven, we finally made it to the coveted Baseball Hall of Fame. The Baseball Hall of Fame is celebrating its 75th Anniversary this year and we picked a great weekend to visit. Not only was the ‘Iron Man’ Cal Ripken, Jr. there himself (we unfortunately did not see Cal) for various events throughout the weekend, the Baseball Hall of Fame actually was opening a brand new Babe Ruth exhibit on the day we went. Talk about great timing.

Once inside, we picked up a map and started to decipher where to go and what to see first. After opting to start on the third floor and work our way down, we entered the “Sacred Ground” exhibit. This exhibit featured quite a bit of information about the ballparks, past and present, themselves. It also featured a ton of new and old memorabilia, such as the Rally Monkey, which is a plush monkey that made appearances in late-inning situations for the 2002 Anaheim Angels’ World Series-winning team.

The exhibit changes from ballparks to players, highlighting individual records that each player has accomplished. Records such as Ripen, Jr.’s consecutive games played streak and the most games played in a career (Pete Rose; 3,562) are records that may (will) never be broken. Finally, upon exiting this exhibit, they have replicas of each ring that the World Series champion receives. It was interesting seeing how gaudy the rings have gotten over the years; it really is all about the bling.

After seeing some great exhibits on the second floor, we headed back to the first floor and walked into a shrine filled with the greatest people to ever be a part of the game of baseball. The bronze busts of each National Baseball Hall of Fame member fill the oak walls from top to bottom. There are 306 total people lining these walls, enshrined in this temple of baseball holiness forever. It was a beautiful sight to witness, one that I never will forget. On the back wall, the original class of Christy Mathewson, Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Honus Wagner and Walter Johnson, is singled out and makes known the start of the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Finally, the other neat exhibit on the first floor is a small one and somewhat hidden. It features all kinds of memorabilia from baseball films. Being the movie buff that I am, especially with a soft spot for baseball-related movies, I got a kick out of this exhibit. There’s even a list that gives all the names of the baseball movies, which was quite informational – I mean, did you know there are three Sandlot movies? I knew of two, but not the third. There was even a great black and white photo of my brilliant Twitter avatar, (if you don’t follow me, you probably should @hamsterjockey) Rick ‘Wild Thing’ Vaughn, made famous in the Major League films.

Overall, my first trip to Cooperstown and the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum was a definite success. It was so much history packed into one visit though, but that just means I will have to go back. I highly recommend that if you have not been there, visit as soon as you can. If you have visited there, I highly suggest that you go back.


das beste oder nichts

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Mottos are something we all need to invest in. A motto, a short expression of a guiding principle, simply could be our saving grace. Have you ever applied to a job and looked at the company’s mission and were turned off? I could ask the same for a club or organization.

Mottos relect our essence. They help inculcate values. Mottos can be personal mantras and a phrase to live by. Mottos can inspire during tough times.  In short, mottos remind us what we stand for, and what we wish to pass to the next generation.

this will make your day

you’re welcome

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

If you don’t know who Kid President is, allow me to introduce you. Check out the videos and over all enjoy your Friday.

As Kid President says, “Love changes everything. So fill the world with it.”

dream chasing

reasons why people don’t pursue their passions

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

After countless classes, trips to my academic counselors and internships I never really could figure out what I wanted to do. Classes and internships helped me to see what I enjoyed doing. They also helped me understand that I didn’t want to sit down and call reporters and pitch stories to them all day– that’s not for me. Deep down, I know that I want to pursue a career that I want and that I was extremely passionate about. But it’s hard to find that perfect fit. What I’ve learned is sometimes, you just need to take a leap of faith.

From an article I recently read, I decided to alter a list of ‘Top 5’ list of the reasons why people (myself included) do not pursue their passions.

Aren’t willing to standout and be “weird”

 It is so much easier to go down the road that everybody else is taking instead of staying true to yourself. It is an awfully daunting task to carve your own path! As an impressionable undergraduate, it was significantly easier to go down the path of everybody else instead of following my own heart. You need to adopt the mentality and understanding that “normal” is the absences of creativity. I will be the first person to tell you that I’m weird, and I love it.

People are satisfied with ‘interested’

Most people I know settle for interested. They will tell you I’m interested in law/politics/writing/music. I think it’s easier to see and to understand that you shouldn’t settle especially when you have the opportunity to see individuals who ‘knew what they were suppose to do’. When you see these people you can just tell how much happier they were because they truly loved and enjoyed what they were doing.


Promise me this, never again start a sentence by saying…If only I had ____. Listen, if I can do it then so can you. I had to overcome these obstacles, and so will you. I knew someone who decided to break into sports/entertainment marketing. He had no money to his name, no relevant work experience in four years of college, few contacts in the industry, not a clue where to begin, a huge student loan payment, and a degree from a college that nobody had ever heard of. But you know what he did it. He really did it, and couldn’t be happier. There is no such thing as an excuses. Chase your dreams!

“I had a dream…”

Countless times I have heard older people start off their sentences like this. It is truly unfortunate. You can never let others hold you from your goals and dreams.


We fear so many things in life it is incredible. Maybe your fear is that you never will accomplish your goals or dreams, and that’s one huge reason that you are being stopped from doing so. It’s better to try and succeed in some fashion, rather than not going for it at all.

I truly hope that this resonates with you. I hope this gives you the motivation to get up tomorrow today and take chances and get out there! There are a lot of questions you will encounter along the way. You have to remember that you need to go on with your journey which will turn into an adventure. For me I have to discover what I truly love doing and I won’t stop until I discovered it. I know I’m not in this boat alone, I will see you a long the way, my friends.