Business Highlight: Kaylin Dillon Financial

Growing up we are often taught that it is taboo to discuss money with anyone.

We shouldn’t discuss how much we make, how much another has etc. The whole situation makes it a bit difficult to move through life, from simple things on how much you should be making in your job position to discussions around money roles in relationships. 

Things get even more restrained when the thoughts start to revolve around death, divorce and other legal hypotheticals.

My client Kaylin Dillon saw this plain and clear when her own life hit this door. She realized how difficult it was to navigate the legal money waters when someone doesn’t have a mentor or authority figure there to tell you what to do or how to do it. More so, she saw with extreme clarity the desperate need couples have for prenuptial agreements. 

Many people hear the term prenup and instantly think ‘unfair’, or that ‘one person in the relationship may be better off.’ Kaylin Dillon Financial is on the move to make sure this is changed, she wants young couples to know that prenups are the simplest way to protect yourself and your money (whatever that may be) from differing cases from new state legislation, to messy divorces.

I am highlighting Kaylin Dillon Financial this month because of the difference she is making in the world. In fact, simply looking at one of her financial passions (money planning in marriages) already causes her to stand out. 36.1% of divorces are attributed to financial difficulties.

And Forbes considers different money styles a detrimental reason for marriage ruin.  I have to believe that Kaylin is making a major influence on being sure you and your partner are on the same page with finances is one of the neatest things she’s doing. Quite frankly, if you have the power to eliminate that pesky 36.1% chance you and your true love don’t make it, why wouldn’t you do it?

Since money talk often feels taboo, I have to say, I love that Kaylin is opening the table to open and non-judgemental conversations.

I, myself am very passionate about perspectives and truly believe that it is not what you say but how you say it.

I suggest giving Kaylin Dillon Financial Planning a follow on any of the social platforms (or all) for some great tips on money management. And if you are ready you can even schedule a consultation

If that is still a leap for you, or you like to gather your info in a different way, she has been on podcasts, and is writing a book!

Can anyone say, “Couple’s Book Club?!”

Business Highlight: HessConnect

HessConnect marketing agency
How often do we as business owners think we have all our ducks in a row and then realize we forgot one MAJOR step.


Yeah for some of us, it strikes fear into our hearts, simply because there is a lot to it. Once upon a time, it was a newspaper ad, questioning if we wanted full-page or half in that magazine…or if we should splurge for the radio advertisement. Now, we question: is TikTok our demographic? Or would we be better suited to hit Facebook, Instagram…or should I stay in my business lane in LinkedIn? It gets to be a lot.

Luckily, there are beautiful, magnificent minded souls attuned to marketing and all those big decisions. One of those is my great friend behind HessConnect, Viveca Hess. 

Some may think branding and marketing are one and the same…but they are not. Branding builds the foundation, which allows folks like Viveca to do the marketing, they do go hand-in-hand. 

Viveca Hess is a fellow Swedish American, she worked in a law firm as a lawyer but found herself managing the marketing and communications for them and thoroughly enjoying it. So, in 2009, she rerouted herself and started HessConnect. Today, HessConnect has created inspirational online content for lawyers.

HessConnect stays so much in the loop that people are able to learn from Viveca in numerous ways from podcasts, blogs, to seminars and teachings. The goodness is spread wide! 

What I adore about HessConnect comes down to the ease and straight-forwardness from Viveca. Of course, her dashes of silliness definitely brighten marketing up for me! All the success factors I consistently preach about are utilized. HessConnect knows who their ideal clients are, what they are offering and tells the viewer exactly what they want them to do. It’s hard to beat a business with this much clarity! 

Additionally, I love the use of brand colors HessConnect uses. The bold, statement red truly exhibits the power, strength and determination that the company will put into marketing any business. 

Another thing HessConnect understands for themselves where their potential clients are hanging out, and so the brand does not stretch itself thin being in places that won’t gain traction. This is clear through her specialization with LinkedIn, and that is where she hangs out and posts. We don’t see a ton of posts on Instagram, where her ideal clients (lawyers) are not.

Simply put, you don’t hang out in a crossfit gym when you are a gymnast.

To me, this shows a brand identity clarity that multiple brands struggle with.

I felt the need to highlight HessConnect because I do often find myself going to Viveca for a helpful tidbit or two, and even better, following her on LinkedIn gives you all that and more! 

So, if you are looking for help in the marketing realm, especially in LinkedIn give HessConnect a follow today!

Business Highlight: Oculto 477

Forgive me Father for I have sinned….

Believe it or not that line can get you into the hippest speakeasy in San Diego that is Oculto 477. 

Where does Oculto 477 come from? Why it is the brain-child of its home! Right next to the second oldest cemetery in San Diego, with you guessed it–477 graves! 

Located within Tahona, Oculto 477’s entry is still a secret within the walls of the restaurant (and that’s part of the fun) and reservations are required. 

Entering Oculto, you are submersed into an intimate and ambient room where mixologists cater to your every tasting desire. Despite its location, Oculto sways away from Tahona’s mezcal love towards Prohibition-inspired cocktails giving choices from low-proof sippers to famous cocktails with a twist.

The website opens with a short video curated to entice viewers into the world of Oculto 477, from the cemetery to cocktail creation shots, you get a small taste of the experience. 

The whole look and feel of the site/brand creates a secretive and ghost-like aura while still maintaining the class and elegance of a lounge. Let’s be honest though the highlight is the cool, flippable menu, that KHD created. I know I love to look at bar offerings before my experience because it is so exciting!  I feel like putting this on the site for a speakeasy is incredible and daunting as these things are often kept secret. But I like it!

Finally, they offer a spot to make reservations which is important since that’s likely what you are there for! 😉

Now, for social media, recently the grid has been following a pattern with black + white photos down the center. I love to see that because these photos are often from the Prohibition era which Oculto is deeply influenced by. 

Other colored photos are a fantastical cocktail pictures that beg for you to take a taste. Or a quiet nook awaiting for you and a partner to sit in. 

The quality photos make all the difference, on the site and the social media platforms. I heavily encourage anyone building a website to get great photos precisely because a picture is worth a thousand words and you can use those words in numerous ways! 

If you find yourself in need of a rather nice “juice joint” (word for bar during Prohibition) then I highly recommend you make yourself a reservation for Oculto 477, and prepare yourself to confess a sin. 

Business Highlight: Classy

Classy is a software company that does good.

Okay, so what does that mean? 

Classy has developed software for online fundraising for nonprofit organizations. The entire idea started after the founder’s (Scot Chisholm) mother had breast cancer. A few of his friends had similar experiences so they organized a charity pub crawl for the American Cancer Society that raised $1000. 

They went on to organize a few more events like this but grew frustrated at the process. Chisholm concocted a mix of Evite, Myspace and Paypal to bring fundraising to digital life. However, the platforms could not handle it, so he sought help and built a custom application for the plan. 

Today, it is Classy, recently acquired by GoFundMe, so it’s the real deal!

They have over 2,500 clients including Shriners Hospitals, Teach For America, National Geographic, and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. 

As if that wasn’t cool enough! 

We have to talk, branding! 

The entire idea of the name “Classy” came from Anchorman, yes the movie. And that hit line, “Stay Classy, San Diego.” 

I love the simplicity of their site. Everything is straightforward. From the clear distinct font, to formatting. You can find everything within seconds. If you are searching for a way to be a fundraiser, or decide you would rather donate, easy scroll and you have numerous choices. 

This is a company that is making a greater impact in everything they do. They are making life easier for fundraisers and donors!

I am inspired by them!

I encourage you to take a look at their site and potentially do a little good yourself all at the click of a button!

Business Highlight: Wormwood

Emily in Paris has built a love for Parisian culture among viewers everywhere. With that rise, enters Wormwood, a French Bohme restaurant located in the middle of University Heights.

Specializing in serving the much-gossiped about Green Fairy (absinthe), Wormwood aims to educate while nourishing the minds of the San Diego with the area’s first absinthe bar.

Eating at Wormwood is a transitional experience, you truly feel as if you are sitting in a French café. Couple in a tasting of one of their exceptional absinthe choices with their insanely fabulous food and you are in Belle Époque Paris!  

I love design and interior design is no different. I had my party in the Secret Garden, a parking lot restored to a wonderful serene setting. Now, I can talk about the wonderful setting and experience that dining at Wormwood is all day, but of course I need to touch on their branding + website as well 😉!

 Wormwood’s branding is on point. From the small green fairy logo, that is extended into their menu. I adore their soft pieces, and the first photo on the website is perfect. I love how they use different flatware, textures and colors to bring a sweet, french, caring sentiment. However, what I find the most exciting about Wormwood is their efforts to educate its consumers, from absinthe classes to tarot reading classes. They are offering experiences surrounding their identity, which is electrifying.

Taking a small trip to and you find a site filled with beautiful professional photographs. There are little snippets of what to expect in “Le jardin secret”, absinthe options and a quaint absinthe carafe display. You will feel FOMO without even realizing that after one view of these photos!

Wormwood has a fabulous social media presence. This beautifully combines everything they worked to portray in person and online into the social media world. A soft, airy grid allows you to view happy customer’s testimonials, gorgeous drink options and delicious eats. Even better you get to meet the Wormwood genius’ on staff which helps give off a homey, known-you forever feel.


Business Highlight: Girlfriends Guide to Golf

A few years ago, Marcela Smith–an avid golfer came across an opportunity in the golf industry; as she noticed there was not a lot of great info for ladies about golf rules, etiquette or attire.

She started golfing at 39, however, it wasn’t an easy path…because of that experience, she found her true calling for golf within the rules.

Girlfriends Guide to Golf is the brainchild of Marcela, created solely to help people like herself who wanted to enjoy the sport but had no idea how or where to start. She’s now had a ton of success teaching rules through her social media and blogs as well as planning and setting up girls’ golf weekends to teach rules and of course, connect women golfers!  

Now, this entire topic is very near and dear to my heart because we actually ran into each other at a marketing event where she found out I had played golf in college, (and hadn’t really since) she utilized that moment to connect and get me back out on the course!  She mentioned to me her idea, which I thought was great and so I helped her create Girlfriends Guide to Golf.  This gave me the opportunity to build out her brand and website.  

Thank goodness that’s an opening I am happy I took, because Marcela is beautiful inside out, full of wit and gives information in a very straight-forward fashion (pun slightly intended), which was also our goal to highlight on the website. I really had fun creating this one. Who you work with makes an incredible difference. 

Whoa! Did we have a fabulous selection of photos to choose from, which is like sourcing really fine ingredients for a good meal! We focused on the blog at the beginning but she has since expanded in many ways from sharing promo codes right in the menu bar (knowing her girlfriends want quick access-it’s all about listening to what your audience wants). A growing company and site like this is always a work-in-progress, with more updates on the horizon to be sure the site keeps up with her creative expansion. 

Girlfriends Guide to Golf is this month’s business highlight because of the high-level care Marcela gives to her girlfriends and her desire to help people. As you all know, I love supporting people and surrounding myself with people who do as well since it maximizes what we can do overall. If you need any help out on the course or curiosity is after you, then I highly recommend having a look at Girlfriends Guide to Golf.

I hope to see you on the greens!

Business Highlight: San Diego Made

You may have found that your home is not set up to support a WFH (work-from-home) office space, or that a routine is needed to encourage productivity. San Diego Made is a place that has made all that a reality. (I almost wish I wasn’t set up at home)!

They have created a space for co-working, setting up shop, holding events, and building a community all within one warehouse on Commercial Street.

The creative workspace that is San Diego Made is a seriously fabulous remodeled factory, #drooling (is it just me who drools over architecture?) with studio and office spaces, an event space, and is often turned into a marketplace to support local artisans within the San Diego Made community, they of course have goodies like; San Diego Made offers fast WIFI, conference rooms, podcasting/private call rooms, A/C, plus a kitchen and dining.

Aside from the physical attributes that San Diego Made has to offer, they have built a community developed through membership! Becoming a member of their community gives a local artisan, craftsman, or businessman the ability to advertise on their website, special opportunities to sell at the markets, blog publication, and discounts to speaking events/workshops, as well as the chance to attend monthly networking socials–brilliant! 

I’m not a member but it looks like a simple process with an application and fee, but the benefits make it surely worth it.

I adore the utilization of an industrial space to make new dreams come true and love the modern feel of the office design. Not to mention, the beautiful  straightforward approach of the website, and community-centered branding!

San Diego Made in my opinion filled a hole in San Diego that we were not even aware was there. Having access to multiple networking and growth events in itself is a huge bonus, but add in the marketing opportunities and a beautiful office space and oh, my!

Check out San Diego Made’s delightful website and awesome social!

Business Highlight: Xena Financial Planning

One of my favorite parts of each month is sitting down to highlight an incredible business.

We have traveled the globe with our highlights, learning about the ins and outs of multiple businesses ranging from authentic mezcal, Australian letterpress, and California ceramics.

This month I am focusing on a wonderful client, Danika Waddel, the founder, and lead planner of Xena Financial Planning.

If you are anything like most, the conversation surrounding finances can be incredibly overwhelming. With how often women are left out of the finance conversations, it is no wonder entering the conversation often feels intimidating.

Danika removes all feelings of uncertainty, instead educating her clients and inviting women into the conversation of money.

Like many women, Danika knows from first-hand experience how often women are left out of finance and investing conversations.

As the founder, Danika’s focus is on women in the tech industry who receive equity compensation, typically in the early to mid-stage of their careers. Her goal is to help her clients make sense of all their options, working directly with her clients to navigate all that life is throwing their way.

Women make up a surprisingly small portion of the tech industry, around 30%, making Xena’s commitment to empowering women even more respectable. Xena is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion while creating a judgement free community where every woman is treated as an individual, one with her own life experiences and dreams.

As a woman who started my own business after an incredible journey of learning from others, I have immense respect for any woman who steps into the role of a businesswoman, especially in a male dominated industry like finance.

Danika’s path into finance was not linear, rather she spent the 15 years post college (with her BA in Mathematics! What a wizz!) in multiple accounting roles where she felt human connection had almost entirely disappeared. This lack of connection encouraged her to build her own practice, one that allows her to be “more nimble and innovative, while specializing in a particular niche”.

As you enter Xena’s service page, you can feel the power of the women, and their dreams, behind this firm.

Danika’s uses Gloria Steinem’s powerful words on her homepage…

“Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming, we lost the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning.”

Thank you, Danika for the gentle reminder to never forget the importance of dreaming.

Business Highlight: Clay & Craft

We take pride in highlighting incredible companies all over the world.

From Melbourne, Australia to San Diego, California, it is a pleasure to highlight businesses that make a greater impact in their own unique way.

This week, our team at KHD is proud to highlight Clay & Craft, a popular pottery and ceramics studio located just a few miles up the PCH in the quintessential beach town of Encinitas, California. 

Whether you are interested in taking a class or looking to add some color and uniqueness to your kitchen, be sure to stop by Clay & Craft the next time you are in the neighborhood. There is nothing better than supporting local, especially a business made up of talented, authentic artists.

On the topic of business, I want to highlight the beautiful branding Clay & Craft has created. With the use of natural colors, clean fonts, and a navigable site, it is clear they value the customer experience. 

We sat down for a chat with local ceramist, Emma Storm, to learn what this studio is all about!

Emma Storm (@mudd.hands)

Well, if you are working at Clay & Craft you must be a talented ceramist! Can you tell us a little bit about how you got started?

I started doing pottery when I moved to San Diego in 2018. I was looking for a new artistic outlet and I had always wanted to try pottery. I never got to meet my maternal grandmother, but she was an artist and a potter and I grew up admiring her art in our home, so ceramics felt right. I completely fell in love with the practice and hope to continue learning and throwing for life!”

How did you hear about Clay & Craft?

I had left my previous job in July 2021 and decided to dive into art full time. Two days later a friend sent me Clay & Craft’s Instagram post advertising that they were hiring, so I jumped at the chance! It felt like the universe had aligned to bring us together!”

Why do you love Clay & Craft?

“I love Clay & Craft for a lot of reasons. Mainly because Nicole (the owner) has provided such an awesome environment for people to come create, learn, and enjoy the craft of ceramics. I love helping people learn how to throw; watching them go from never having thrown on a wheel to them having made 3 or 4 pieces by the end of their lesson is such a privilege. I love the process and seeing clients be proud of themselves and in what they made.”

Do I need to reserve a time to come to Clay & Craft? How does it work?

Yes! You can reserve a time for either a 90 minute private or group wheel lesson. Our website makes it super easy with available appointment times listed, just click and book! We also offer Handbuilding workshops and Wheel Time for seasoned potters. And, in the coming months the studio is expanding and we’ll be offering more classes and workshops.”

I’ve never thrown before, will someone be there to teach me?

“Yes! When you book a wheel lesson, an instructor will be there to teach and guide you every step of the way.”

I am experienced and i'm just looking for a wheel, can I throw in peace?

“Yup! We offer 90 minutes of uninstructed wheel time (by reservation) for those who are confident in their throwing skills to come in and work at their own pace.”

What can I make at Clay & Craft? Do I get to keep it?

You can make whatever you want! One piece is included in your lesson and any other pieces you make are an additional $10 firing fee.”

Are there any community events we should know about?

“We offer group workshops each month. An annual Sample + Seconds sale and plan to host a social event in the coming months once we complete our studio expansion. We encourage people to follow @clayandcraftco to stay in the loop.”

What is your favorite piece to make?

Everything! Everything I make is special to me. Being able to create something useful out of earth is the coolest thing to me. Drinking coffee out of a mug, eating off of a plate or bowl or watching a plant grow in a pot I made is a really special feeling.”

If you could describe the feeling you have when you are on the wheel, what would it be?

“When I’m throwing a piece on the wheel, I feel zoned in. In that moment, nothing else matters but being present with the clay. It’s a peaceful feeling.”

How can we support you? Where do you sell your pottery?

Come book a class at Clay + Craft! Follow us on Instagram @clayandcraftco and you can follow me @mudd.hands.

Nicole has her pottery on the Clay + Craft website as well as in the storefront of the studio.

I sell all of my work through a friend, chef, and author of cookbook “s h i n e.”, Sylvie Coulange. You can find my pieces on her site or through my Instagram @mudd.hands.

The holidays are around the corner and nothing is better than a homemade gift. We cannot wait to see what beautiful pieces come from the talented hands of Clay & Craft!

Business Highlight: Tahona

Is there anything better than a delicious mezcal spirit with flavorful Oaxacan eats?

Tahona does it best.

Located in the Old Town neighborhood of San Diego, the one-of-a-kind agave bar brings the spirit of Oaxaca to Southern California.

Tahona’s mission is “to educate and give reverence to the complexity and beauty of the Mexican culture through its most iconic beverage, mezcal and to become an epicenter of mezcal culture in San Diego.”

Inside their space, you get to experience unique, amazing cocktails, fill up on delicious Oaxacan inspired food, and can taste some of the best mezcals in the world. The team at Tahona has a colorful selection of over 120 mezcals, creating a tasting experience that is fun, educational, and memorable.

Right when you step foot into the restaurant you immediately feel and see the Oaxacan influence. Located next to the Campo Santo Cemetery in Old Town, there is a historic energy throughout the restaurant. With hand painted tiles and handmade rope seats which were sourced from Oaxaca, visitors get the feeling of being transported to a modern Mexican hacienda.

The authenticity of Tahona is prevalent on all levels, from their furniture choices to the mezcal selection, which was one of the reasons I chose to work with them.

Here at KHD we work with a wide variety of businesses that make a greater impact, those who use their skills for good through authenticity, education, and inspiration.

When creating their logo, I did a lot of research on the history and process of mezcal, which is fascinating. Learning the story and production of mezcal, I decided to incorporate the heart of the agave plant into the design, bringing Tahona’s spirit of agave to life. I wanted to make sure it felt rustic yet modern to fit with their vision.
As a designer, it is extremely fulfilling to see my work bringing others’ visions to life. As someone who loves interior design, it was extra special to see it in a restaurant. Another part that made this project memorable is how focused this group is on using their skills to make a greater impact while staying true to their values of authenticity, education, and inspiration.

Tahona proudly shares the purpose of taking their greater impact home to Mexico:

As a socially responsible business, we support the work that Corazon de Vida is doing with 10 orphanages and over 550 disenfranchised children in Baja California. Our first project is to open the first art center at Rancho de los Ninos, an orphanage located in Valle de Guadalupe. Just as mezcal is a powerful force to learn about geo-political and environment issues, art is a powerful medium for healing and creating a deeper connection with the soul and we are excited to be part of this project.”

Next time you are in San Diego, I highly recommend visiting Tahona and enjoying their Oaxacan influences and rustic designs! This is a project am really proud to be a part of and I think you will see why when you experience the beauty of Tahona.

Take a seat at the bar, enjoy a Corn & Chile Poblano Croqueta with a signature mezcal drink and you will be well on your way to an unforgettable evening!