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Meet The Flip Fam: Nonee Kay

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Meet The Flip Fam: Nonee Kay

Welcome to our Flip Fam blog series, where we interview members of our community who artfully build the spirit of adventure and serendipity into their everyday lives!


Kicking off our series is the magical Nonee Kay of Glendale, CA, a special events pro with Kay12 Catering and community gathering guru. We had the pleasure of interviewing Nonee in her family-run artist compound called “Theatre13”, where she shared nuggets of inspiration, adventure, and creative tips for getting unstuck.

Nonee

Your favorite nickname:

Well, my name is short for Antigone, the storybook princess said to be one of the first activists of love (she’s a character from a Sophocles novel). So, technically, I was born with a nickname.

 

What’s your role in the Kay sibling business?

My position is all about bringing people together and building community, and I get to orchestrate celebrations for people and feed them delicious things! My brother and I say “what we do is the anti-war”. We use events as an outlet to remind everyone that life is meant to be lived, and that the best moments of your life should be celebrated.

(Fun fact: When I was younger, I never thought I would be working with my family...I actually thought I’d be a nun to ensure my seat in Heaven! Not sure if I’m still getting one of those!)

 

What’s your go-to zen spot in LA?

I started a hiking group called “The Air Humping Hikers”. Every Wednesday (HUMP day) morning, we’ll pick a trail (I like them all!), start off with a meditation and set an intention, and at the top, dance our asses off to a new song. We tape it to broadcast to others that even Wednesdays can become the best day of the week, as long as you do something incredible with it.

 

What’s your most beloved travel destination?

Anywhere I’ve never been!

 

Why is adventure important to you and what do you do to infuse it into your daily life?

For me, adventure is anything that gets my adrenaline pumping, and more often than not, something I haven’t done before. I do my best to put myself out there, jump out of my comfort zone, and maybe even surprise myself. Especially any time I can meet someone new, that’s always going to spark a new experience for me.

 

What's your go-to 'thing' to get unstuck?

If I’m having a day that feels too “normal”, I will get back to a book that I haven’t finished (usually non-fiction that’s going to give me new tools and skills) or listen to a TED talk that I’ve had bookmarked for months.

Doing either of those things always makes me think of other people who I then want to reach out to — sometimes it’s direct, as in the writer of an article I’ve read, the consulate general of a country I really want to visit, or, in the case of Serenflipity, reaching out to Cara when I first bought the deck of cards (when she was still in beta!).

In essence, I get unstuck when I realize that the life I’m living isn’t just the city I’m in and the community I have - I can to reach out to anyone, wherever they live and whoever they are. Then, the planet feels a whole lot smaller and far more accessible.  

 

What's your mantra for getting through challenges or tough times? (And can you give us an example of how that's come to life for you?)

“I am healthy, I am well, I am here and I am now”. We have to remember: we all came into the world already as winners - we started as sperm, we swam the fastest through a tube, we held on the strongest to an egg, we managed to survive in a little room shooting foreign objects our way, and then we were born. We’re walking on a planet amongst winners. It’s that reminder that humbles me and helps me realize that no matter how much I screw up in one day, I started as a winner and I can always go back to being one.

 

What’s a piece advice you have to someone who is resistant to adventure or to doing something different?

There’s really no reason not to go out and try something new. We create these comfort zones in our heads — if we step too far away, we know our way back. Once we become aware that these places could put a halt to our soul’s growth, we are more inclined to step out of them. Everyone gets a little nervous to try something new at first, but isn't that feeling of nerves even a little bit exhilarating?

 

How do you Serenflip?

I use the cards not only to instigate adventure on my own, but for others, as well. I love that moment when you surprise a stranger by buying them a cup of coffee and watching them get taken aback by a random act of kindness. We all have lost a bit of faith in humanity, so I Serenflip to bring that trust back and do more good for people. We all want to feel loved, so why don’t we spread some more of that good s**t?

And, it doesn’t even need to be about flipping a card every day, but rather shifting my awareness and thinking on a much bigger level...to be open, willing and curious.

 

What do you think about adventure potentially being the next meditation (and what could the benefits be)?

Look, we all do things to help us feel better. Some of us meditate to reduce stress and anxiety, others go for a run, some of us crazies go out into the street and silly string strangers because a (Serenflipity) card told us to “instigate fun”. Whatever you can do to become the best version of yourself, while hopefully helping others do the same, should be the “new great thing” to do to feel amazing. :]

 

Follow Nonee’s adventures here! 

@noneekay + @airhumpinghikers + @vertigoeventvenue

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Check Us Out At The White House!

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Check Us Out At The White House!

Can you spot the SERENFLIPITY? Super psyched to have been a part of these amazing gift bags for the White House Correspondents Dinner and the Time 100 Gala.

It boggles my mind to think that just a few years ago this was a crazy personal project to get unstuck.

Then it was a side hustle that I dreamed about becoming a full time thing, and chiseled away at, at all hours while living in Asia. Then I had some serious personal setbacks, as many of you know.

Now, it's in places I would never have imagined (even a few months ago), and growing into a real business, day by day.

My dad shared this gem yesterday: "All I can say is: pursue the path you have chosen with ever-increasing confidence, and conviction that the outcomes will not only be surprising but lead you to people and places you never dreamed of. Life is a voyage of discovery so set full sail to savor its delights."

Thank you guys for the fantastic support!

With love,

Cara

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How 7 Strangers Got SERENFLIPITY Into Beyonce's Hands

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How 7 Strangers Got SERENFLIPITY Into Beyonce's Hands

Last week, 850 SERENFLIPITIES got shipped to some serious A-list galas. A few challenges ensued -- to say the least! But with the help of strangers on platforms like Facebook, Uber and SHYP, it takes a little resilience, vulnerability and creativity to make almost anything happen. (And some good snacks!)

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Dude Looks Like A Lama: Getting A Mantra From An Unexpected Rockstar

Elizabeth Real challenged me to ask a stranger for a mantra, and what better stranger than an inspiring rock-n-roll hero.

In my hotel lobby, I saw a familiar face, long tousled hair and layers of distressed denim that only a famous rocker could wear as effortlessly as I wear my Lululemons. Unflanked by guards or an air of celebrity, he was perusing the shop windows, admiring sumptuous fabrics and sparkling gems just like any other well-heeled tourist. With my challenge in my wallet, I knew he would be the ideal person to ask. I back-and-forthed over whether to approach a lime-lighter clearly enjoying an off-stage moment, and how to acknowledge his celebrity, as I admired the showcases just a few feet away.

I overheard his familiar rasp, and figured he was put in my path for a reason.

“That’s a familiar voice!” I exclaimed, just as I might have to any other American thousands of miles from home. He smiled and turned and we began to chat about where each of us had lived.

“You lived in Aspen? Well, how’s your ass been?” He joked.

“Well it’s been great,” I responded with an exaggerated hip slap. “I’m on sabbatical for three months traveling the world.”

We chatted and laughed about travel and my three months off as we sauntered down the hall admiring jewelry, and picking up a few onlooking Americans in conversation.

“I have a strange request for you.” I summoned, after a deep breath. He looked at me, perhaps expecting an ask for an autograph or a large donation. “My friends are giving me challenges to do over my 90 days away, and today I have to ask a stranger for a mantra… Would you be up for giving me one?”

He smiled and crossed his arms in thought. “Wow, that’s a good challenge.” More pauses, an elbow to the wall and hand to the back of his head, and through his tousled hair. He paced and furrowed his brow.

“I’m sorry to ask you such a difficult question on your vacation,” I backtracked. “It’s completely fine if you can’t think of one.”

“No, no… This is good.” More pausing and thinking. “A mantra… Just one word?”

“Well, it can be a phrase, a word of advice, a flash of inspiration… Whatever comes to mind.” I was feeling like I had overstepped my bounds.

As he kept thinking and pacing, his friend assured me that I had indeed asked the right person. A few other hotel guests started to look on. More pauses. My brain quickly sidled up to gawk at the scene of one of the world’s most famous rockers pacing and thinking, and a trepidatious American fumbling and glancing around the marble hall: I can’t believe you asked this man for a mantra… And then, he had it.

The only way to get to the other shore is to lose sight of the one you’re on.

“This is amazing,” I beamed. “It’s perfect and so applicable to where I am right now.”

“Me too,” he smiled. “Me too.” Status and circumstance washed away, and we continued to chat as we walked down the hall, a small group of us connected by the desire to look to new shores. The type of shore we were each aiming for, fancy and famous or small and simple, seemed superfluous. Just knowing others, even the most celebrated, sought new shores and a little inspiration for the swim was a strong enough current to push me farther away from the fears of that familiar, footprinted sand I’ve treaded for so long.

Much of my travel has been about letting go of old ideas, whether my need to control and plan or my ability to turn a simple decision into a detailed drama. Over the past few months, I’ve had to let the current pull me farther from the plans I’ve pre-meditated and closer to the possibilities I can’t yet fathom. And what a laughably-perfect way to practice floating with the flow than to be presented with the need for a mantra and a superstar stranger.

I still hadn’t given nod to the fact that I knew how famous he was, and at this point in the conversation, it seemed odd to throw in how much I admired his work, how enthralled I was at age 9 by “Janie’s Got A Gun,” or to call him by name.

As we parted ways, we wished each other well on our respective shore-hopping journeys. I was reminded that lamas come in many forms and that we all can teach from our experiences. Anyone can be a lama, often unintentionally and sometimes just for a moment. You just have to ask.

Originally published on yestoexcess.com.

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