Thank you Abbot Kinney Festival Vendors

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By all accounts, the annual Abbot Kinney Festival in Venice last Sunday was a triumphant success!  We're sorry we weren't able to stop and thank each of you personally for participating.  You may have seen us whizzing by on our golf carts. Here's hoping all the fires we put out behind the scenes didn't create too much smoke!  With 325 vendors, 3 beer gardens, 4 music stages, a whole Kids festival within the festival - all along a mile long street with about 100,000 attendees - it's quite an event!

We're so proud to be a part of the Abbot Kinney Festival Association - the non profit that puts on this show.  Net proceeds from the festival are reinvested into the community to various worthy organizations.  By far, our favorite part of the day is when we turn off our walkies, present the grant recipients their checks, and honor the Spirit of Venice awardees.  It's always a pleasure to have Coucilman Mike Bonin there to preside. 

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We're Inspired!

We are continually inspired by the amazing talent of our vendors. One artisan who stands out to us is Mei Elizabeth. Her jewelry is exquisite and wearable. Every time Kim wears the beautiful wire-wrapped and crystal ring she bought from Mei, she gets loads of compliments.  We love Mei's tagline - do good and live well.

But there's another reason we're so inspired by Mei. She donates a portion of her proceeds to the UN Refugee Relief Organization (UNHCR) to help in their efforts to rescue, rehabilitate and house refugees displaced from their home country due to war, genocide, natural disasters and political, racial and religious persecution.

As the daughter of concentration camp survivors and war refugees herself, she hasn't forgotten that without the help of UNHCR, and the kindness of strangers, she wouldn't be here today.  

  'Survivor' -   ‘  nhia no roa  ’ in Khmer, the ancient Sanskrit based language of Cambodia

'Survivor' - nhia no roa’ in Khmer, the ancient Sanskrit based language of Cambodia

To further her mission Mei recently launched The RISE Collective, inspired by the epic journey of her family who were enslaved in Cambodian concentration camps during the Khmer Rouge regime and to honor her brother who fought so hard and lost his battle against slavery during their escape to freedom. 

The signature survivor cuff is handcrafted from recycled munitions by local fair wage Cambodian artisans.  Every purchase provides a year's worth of school supplies to a child in need - empowering them through education.  

Thank you Mei - you inspire us to do good and live well.  

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A Day at the Museum

Museum of Flying Cockpit
Museum of Flying Blue Angels

Our search for the ideal venue for our first Rendezvous Market led us to the Museum of Flying at the Santa Monica Airport.  It's centrally located, easy to reach - just off the 10, plenty of free parking and really cool!  We met with Dan and Steve from the museum and were totally sucked in by their enthusiasm.  We hammered out the details in Donald Douglas' actual, retro-cool board room.   We were like a couple of kids; sitting in the cockpit of the 727 with the live broadcast from the control tower, ogling over the Lockheed Vega replica that Amelia Earhart piloted as the first woman to cross the Atlantic; a flying car; racing jets; a Blue Angels plane; and the super cool micro jet James Bond flew in "Octopussy".  

If you're a plane buff - you'll love this place - if you're not a plane buff - you'll love this place!  Oh, and we flew the amazing flight simulator…let's just say leave your hats and glasses behind…this really does loop-de-loops!  We're SO excited to partner with the Museum of Flying for our inaugural flight!!!

 

Welcome to our Clubhouse!

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We returned from our inspiring getaway in the high desert and hunkered down mapping out Rendezvous Market.  Ticking items off the list, we came to 'find office space'.  It was pretty high on the list.  We knew we needed a space to meet and share ideas.

A quick online search and Voila! The perfect location popped up!  Two days later we had the keys and never looked back.  OK, we started with rusty garden chairs and a folding table (glad we don't have a picture of that!), but the space kept us on task to hammer out the details of the business. 

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One day Kim brought  a pretty blue upholstered chair she thought would make great desk chairs.  That got us started.  Desks, lamps, internet, phones and computers followed.  Once we had our comfy brainstorming area and mini fridge, it became our home-away-from-home. 

Upstairs and flooded with sunlight - it's our treehouse/clubhouse.

Let us know if you want to come by and we'll give you our secret password!

In the beginning….

 Integratron - Landers

Integratron - Landers

 Sound Bath Crystal Bowls

Sound Bath Crystal Bowls

Early last month we snuck away for a secret Rendezvous in Joshua Tree.  For months we were kicking around the idea of combining our talents and starting a business together.  We needed to get off-grid for a few days to hammer out details.  First stop - The Integratron…a quirky, atomic age jewel in the middle of nowhere - perfect!   What better way to start our retreat than one of the Integratron's Sound Baths?  The crystal bowls resonated in the amazing domed acoustic chamber, and in our souls. 

Emotionally charged, we checked into our adobe casita at the 29 Palms Inn.  Dinner at the Inn, fireplace crackling (with temps dropping into the 60's we had to sacrifice that piñon log - it's all about the ambiance!), star gazing from our patio.  Coyotes chattering in the dark outside conjured up images of those dogs-playing-poker paintings.  Maybe a hallucination - the desert can cast a magical spell.  More than likely R.I.P. poor little jack rabbit. The evening was filled with our own chatter, the excitement of embarking on a new journey.

The next morning we drove deep into Joshua Tree.  After some exploration, we settled into our Flintstone office in this Land Before Time.  No cell reception, no wifi, no electricity.  Just journals, pencils, warm rocks.  Inspiration spilled forth onto the pages. Our uncluttered minds hashed out pros/cons, yin/yang, personal goals/career objectives.

In the end…Rendezvous Market!

 Flintstone Office - Joshua Tree

Flintstone Office - Joshua Tree