June 28, 2017

Midweek Ramblings + Recent Purchases + Current Wishlist.

{My second visit to the Ben and Jerry's factory in Vermont! Follow me on social media @miss_alk}

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  • More company! My dad was in Vermont last weekend for Father's Day, and this weekend I had a surprise last minute visit from my sorority sister Hannah, who now lives in Boston! The timing worked out perfectly for her to come up, and we had such a great time. I made my second trip back to the Ben and Jerry's factory (I have a feeling many more trips are in my future with more company to come....), and we also took some time to enjoy downtown Burlington. Since I've had some difficulty adjusting to life in Vermont since the move, it's been great to have visitors here! My next visitor will be my roommate from last year, Ciera, who comes in later next week! 
  • Morning show fill-in: I've never been so excited to set my alarm for 3:45 am as I am for this Friday! I am getting the chance to fill-in on the morning show for one of the radio stations that I work for, and I CANNOT WAIT! Some of you might remember that I interned for a morning show back in Charlotte right before accepting my job here in Vermont. While I was only on the air twice during my last internship, I fell in love with the concept of morning radio during my time working for the show, and honestly I think mornings might be something I'd like to do for my next job! I think Friday's experience will be so fun, and I love working for a company that lets me get to try new things. 


  • My preferences in retailers has definitely changed through the years- as to be expected! There are some stores that I really haven't shopped at since I was in high school. One such retailer happened though last week to be having an AMAZING online sale last week that a friend texted me about (FYI- the sale is happening again! More info in the Wishlist section of the post.). They were doing 50% off all online orders $40+, and 65% off all online orders $100+. Stop and read that again- can you believe that?! I couldn't either! Even though this store isn't my personal fav anymore, with deals like that I knew this would be the time to stock up on things I needed. I've been shopping around lately for a good pair of jean shorts- and I was able to scoop some up for under $20 with the sale! 
  • Something else that I picked up in that amazing online sale was this pair of winter boots. I know, I know... it's almost July! But winter in New England will be here before I know it, and boots are more of an investment purchase. With the great deals in that sale I was able to score these for UNDER $30! What an amazing deal. 
  • As I mentioned in Monday's post... I had a bit of a rough weekend at work. Since I also had company here for Sunday/Monday... it was the perfect excuse to do a little shopping at some of the boutiques in downtown Burlington! There is a boutique that sells some Lilly Pulitzer in Burlington, and they of course happened to be having a sidewalk sale! I am not usually an impulsive Lilly buyer, but I walked away with a pair of these pants and do not regret it at all! Since I work in such a casual environment for my day job I know I'll be wearing them tons this summer. 

  • A PSA before starting my wishlist- that AMAZING online sale that I took advantage of last week (50% off orders $40+ and 65% off orders $100+) is BACK until TONIGHT ONLY at the same retailer! Shop it now here - don't miss this one! 
  • A lot of my good friends have birthdays in the summer. This BFF sweatshirt duo would be such a funny and unique gift for your bestie's birthday!
  • Since I'm not a big coffee drinker, I drink hot tea year round. It's always fun to have a summery portable hot beverage mug in the warmer months, and this one is so cute and a good deal!
  • This really cute swing dress is in such a bold shade, but I think I kinda love it! It's an online exclusive FYI.
  • A gorgeous, simple one piece bathing suit in my favorite shade of bright pink! 

On the blog this week:

     Thanks so much for reading! Stay tuned for Friday's post- I know that y'all enjoy seeing the PR packages that I get from blogging, especially the beauty ones. I'll be sharing honest reviews of a lot of the products that I've received recently in my next blog post! 

     God Bless,

      xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on the radio!)

June 27, 2017

Radio 101: What Does An "On-Air Personality" Do?

     Welcome to my first blog post in my new series all about one of my true loves: the radio industry! As many of you know, I just began my full-time job in the radio industry back in April. Pretty much since that point in time, I have been brainstorming how I can share my career on my blog. I decided to start a monthly post series (appropriately called "Radio 101") in which each month I'll answer a question about the radio industry in general, Top 40 radio, or my job specifically! If you have a question about any of these things- PLEASE send it my way!! You can comment on this post, email me or DM me on social media (I'm @miss_alk on Twitter and Instagram!). I'll use your question in a future post for this series.

     *If you're wondering how I first became interested in radio and how I decided to move to Vermont for my first job, check out this post! If you're wondering why I went to attend a year of broadcasting school after getting my undergraduate degree, check out this post!*

     Today's question: I saw you refer to your new job as being an "on-air personality." I've never heard of a DJ being called that! Besides for talking on the radio, what all does an on-air personality do?

      Such a great question to kick off this series! There's definitely a lot more to my job description than just announcing songs. 😉

      Of course, the main part of being an on-air personality is the radio portion of the job. This is probably 75% of what I do, and some weeks even more than that! In short, a lot of talking! Some personalities are one "cast member" in an ensemble show with multiple personalities (this is typically found in morning shows), and others like myself host our own solo shows.

      My current schedule is that I work for two radio stations in the same company, a Top 40 station and an AC (This stands for Adult Contemporary- meaning a blend of today's lighter pop hits and some 90s/2000s throwbacks). My primary station is the Top 40, Planet 96.7, - and I'm their midday personality, which means I host the show on weekdays which hits most of the workday hours! I'm on-air for Planet weekdays M-F from 10-3 pm. On Saturday evenings, I work for Star 92.9, the AC station. Weekends in radio often see different shifts than the weekdays, and I host the 3-8 pm shift on Saturdays for Star- after I'm off-air they play a nationally syndicated 90s music night show. I also do two additional weekend shifts for Planet. See what I mean- a lot of talking! (FYI- if you're ever interested in tuning in, both stations that I work for have free iPhone apps with streaming, and you can also stream the radio live on the websites!)

     The "talking on the radio" part is also more complicated than people think. While a good deal of my talk breaks for both stations are simply stating the station name and the song that's about the play,  that isn't all of them! I do a lot of prep work each day for my shows to find content to discuss with listeners. Top 40 radio shows often have an entertainment news flavor to them, since they're targeting young millennials. Each day I read about what's new in Hollywood, and look for stories that feature the artists that we're playing currently on the radio. I also look for anything viral or trending in the online world. 95% of what I read about each day I don't talk about on-air, either because it wouldn't appeal to enough of Planet's listeners, it's too long of a story to be broken down for a short radio talk break.... or sometimes just too weird of a story! (I share some of the weird ones that I read on IG stories and Snapchat sometimes- one of last week's was a trending article about a 60 something year old grandma who pole dances! That's just WEIRD!)

      The last portion with talking on the radio is the listener interaction component. I regularly run on-air giveaways and promotions! Airing regular phone calls with listeners is an important part of being a radio personality- you always want to show the audience (and your sales clients) that you're interacting with your demographic, and doing a good job at it! This summer, Planet is doing lots of concert ticket giveaways, so I qualify listeners for those and then edit and air the calls most weekdays during my show. (And no- radio calls are NOT aired live! They're recorded, edited, and then played back once made perfect on-air!)

     That concludes the talking on-air portion of the job duties... but there's still lots more that a radio personality does! Something else voice-related that I get to do that's lots of fun is voice commercials. Almost all of our commercials are voiced in-house with our own personalities as the writers, producers and vocal talent, which I think is so cool. I always love having the chance to read a new script and voice a commercial, and it's fun to hear them on-air when I'm out and about outside of work. My favorite one that I've done so far has been for a local grocery store chain that's hiring for summer employment.

      Social media and blogging are two huge components of my job, and no, I don't mean working on things related to Southern Belle in Training! 😉 Branding a radio station is so important, and in the digital age of media, a well executed social media strategy and a high quality website/blog for a radio station is so crucial. The top radio and TV markets across the country have digital departments in their offices, staffed with people who are simply devoted to making the digital side of the media great. But in a smaller radio company like that one that I work for, on-air personalities take care of all of the station social media needs. Each day, I take the show prep that I have prepared as talking points for my show and also transform it into social media content for station blog posts, and posts for our Facebook and Instagram. (We also do have a Twitter, but a lot of our station tweets are automated shares currently.)

     Events and promotions are the last portion of the job, and although this isn't an everyday component to my work, it is an important one. The visual part of radio are the community events and live broadcasts, which are called "remotes." Remotes are when your listeners really get the chance to interact with you up close and personally, and you can also attract new listeners at them! Some remotes are paid as advertising opportunities with local businesses, and others are for charitable causes for local non-profits. So far the remotes that I've worked since beginning my job were all for charity, but I will have my first live broadcast events (which are events that our sales team coordinate with local businesses!) coming up in July or August.

     So in short, that is a summary of my current job as an on-air personality. Job descriptions do vary from station to station, as well as show times (For example, a morning radio personality might have slightly different responsibilities than I do hosting a midday show.). But for the most part- this is the gig! And I love it- so very much! I dream about being nationally syndicated someday, but for now I'm enjoying growing in my field and learning how to be the best radio personality I can be!

      I hope that you enjoyed my first Radio 101 post! I'm already looking forward to sharing the next few. If you have any sort of a question related to the radio industry, or any burning question you've ever wondered about your favorite radio station, send it my way! Email me at rainbowflash94@yahoo.com, or DM me on social media.

     God Bless,

     xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on the radio!)

June 26, 2017

One Maxi Dress Two Ways: Breezy Daytime Look.

Photography by Melissa Lynn Studios 

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Southern Belle in Training.

     How beautiful is this amazing watercolor maxi dress? I knew as soon as I saw it online that I had to have it. The way that the purples and blues blend together in the fabric is even prettier in person than on the website! 😊 These photos were taken when I was out for a mid-morning stroll in Burlington's Waterfront Park. This is a public park that runs all along the part of Lake Champlain that borders the downtown, and it's a lovely place to hangout at in the spring and summer! 

     Last fall, I wrote two fashion posts where I styled an off-the-shoulder top two different ways: one for a casual daytime look, and one outfit perfect for a girls' night out on the town. Since I love this beautiful dress so much, I wanted to try doing that again! A dressier look #2 with this maxi dress will be on the blog next Monday, but today's look is the more casual one. I wore it without the waist tie that it comes with, and paired it with these flat sandals, a bold clutch, and some fun statement earrings, and let my hair go free! This look would be great for lots of summer activities- dinner outside, errands, a casual party, or of course a stroll by the lake like I'm doing! I can't wait to show y'all how I made this dress look completely different and quite fancy in next Monday's post. 

     Getting real for a second... last week was a bit of a rough one for me. I truly LOVE my day job and the radio industry- for the most part since I started my job in April every week has felt like "fun" and not work. Last week was the first week that I had a rough week at work, and it actually started to feel like work. Fortunately it wasn't anything to do with the radio aspects of my job (which is 90% of what I do!) - I still love that. 😉 Just some of the other parts of having a job... the things that quite honestly everyone deals with no matter what industry! It was a rough week, but I am thankful it's now DONE and a new week is here. And a special treat came my way this weekend- I was able to get a surprise last minute visit here in Burlington from one of my sorority sisters! My ADPi sister Hannah moved to Boston almost a year ago to attend grad school, and this weekend happened to be free in her schedule for her to head up north to visit me. This was such a lovely thing to look forward to after a harder week! Today is my day off, so you can see what adventures we're up to on my IG stories (and Snapchat too!) @miss_alk. 

     Hoping your week is off to a good start!

     God Bless,

      xoxo Annaliese (or Charlotte XO on the radio!)