Earlier this year, I wrote about the book 📚 The Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes. It talks about stepping out of your comfort zone, saying yes and experiencing the opportunities that manifest. 🙌🏾 Well a few months back, I went to a Mad Hatter's Tea Party at La Duni and happened to meet an amazing writer for a local Dallas magazine. Since then, we traded contact information and have communicated on social media back and forth. As I was scrolling through Facebook, catching up on the typical newsfeed, his post caught my eye.. "Serena Williams at Neighborhood Goods". Uhm, anyone who knows me knows that's instant clickbait for me.
As I read more, I saw that only 50 people would be admitted into the exclusive event for her clothing line unveiling at Neighborhood Goods in Plano. Immediately, I RSVP'd and hoped for the best. Days went by and I heard nothing. Then about 48 hours before.. *in my Willy Wonka voice* "Your Girl got the Golden Tickkketttt!"
I couldn't have been more excited... Until the day rolled around.. It was super cold, wet and rainy. 🌧 Three things I do not do. I also had a Gala to attend that same night for Dallas Millennial Clubs and I really wanted to rest + stay home because I knew I would be dancing the night away. What were the chances I was actually going to talk to Serena, one of my role models anyway? Then Shonda’s words kicked in, I got dressed and I went.
I arrived about an hour early got a Starbucks and waited for the event. As I entered the store, I was pleasantly impressed. Neighborhood Goods is a Dallas-based start up housing an eclectic variety of brands in a modern "sip + shop" environment. With a full kitchen in the store, you can literally eat, sip and shop at the same time.
For the event, Neighborhood Goods served sliders, avocado toast and Serenarita's all of which were absolutely delicious (pictures below). The room was packed with fans of all ages and press. I definitely felt honored to be there. As the DJ spun and we got our seats, a Neighborhood Goods rep took the mic... "We have a surprise in store for you tonight.. Ashley Graham will e interviewing Serena Williams live for the final episode of her podcast! "What..? The Ashley Graham? Body Positivity, America's Next Top Model, Ashley Graham?!
Instantly, I was thinking, "Not one but TWO of my role models are here.. in the same room.. as me?". I sat second row while Ashley (you know, because we're on a first name basis) conducted her interview and was able to get epic pictures. The icing on the cake: I got to not only meet but have an actual conversation with both Serena Williams + Ashley Graham. It was AMAZING.
They discussed Serena's new clothing line and her inclusion of women's of all sizes, her impact on body positivity and women's empowerment. To listen to two amazingly strong women discuss such important issues in such an intimate environment was life-changing.
I can honestly say once again, the lesson I learned again that day: Take chances. Say yes. Life’s short and opportunities await.
Check out more great moments from the event below!