An Evening with Preston Bailey and Friends: Or, When opportunity knocks, JUMP!
OMG you guys!!! So yesterday, I met Preston Bailey. Like, THE Preston Bailey, internationally renowned event designer, who has done events for royalty, celebrities and Oprah! I am honestly still in shock. I'm truly and incredibly excited and humbled. It was amazing!! How did I stumble upon such an awesome opportunity? Here's the story! Preston's blog is one I follow because I believe that to be the best, we need to surround ourselves with the best. And regardless of how you feel about his design style, you can't deny that this man has built an empire in the events industry. He's from Panama, and he built his company out of nothing with years of hard work and dedication. His blog is beyond inspiring, and not just design-wise. He speaks to business struggles and helps guide and encourage other professionals to be the best they can be.
A few weeks back, in mid January, Preston announced a little contest on his blog. He was opening his NYC studio for "Behind the Scenes with Preston Bailey & Friends." It was an invitation only event, and to request an invitation, you had to answer a simple question. "What has been your biggest mistake thus far and what lesson did you learn from it?"
When I saw this come through (it was posted in a few of the Facebook groups I participate in), it was after 4pm, meaning I was on mom-duty. I was taking care of my two sons, cooking dinner and folding laundry- Nick Jr. was on in the background, and I could not focus for the life of me! So in my head I said "I'll skip it. It's not like they're going to pick me anyway. And besides, what if they don't like me? I'm just another wedding planner from New Jersey... aren't there like 400 of us?" Then I thought "Seriously Jas, this is a ONCE IN A LIFETIME opportunity. Go get your phone and DO THIS." So I typed up my answer on my iPhone. The page froze. I re-entered everything again, and then it kicked me out. By this point, my oldest wants me to play Angry Birds with him, and the baby was fussing. But I was bound and determined. I was submitting my answer! I calmed the kids, grabbed my laptop, re-typed everything and hit submit. Phew, it was done. I promptly forgot about it and went on with my evening.
Fast forward to the morning of January 22, 2014. I roll over in bed, grab the phone because the alarm is blaring- and instantly open Facebook (yes, it's an addiction, I know. One day I'll have it treated.) I have a message and a post on my wall from an industry friend... I got IN!!! I was like WHAAAAAATTT??? But there it was, my name. MY NAME! I was going to MEET PRESTON BAILEY!!! AHHHH!!!
Here's the answer I submitted:
So that brings us to the amazing-ness that was the event itself- it was just beyond. And I'll save goodness that for the next post! What would you have done? Would you have jumped at this opportunity or let it pass by? Share with me in the comments!
And as always, Keep celebrating!