Good morning, Iowa!

For those of you trying to get back into the swing of things at work after a long weekend, I'm right here with you. The morning struggle is so real sometimes. It doesn't have to be, though. Here are some tips on sleeping better and winning each morning. It's the last day of May. Do you know what's coming up for June? See the list of events here and see what you missed on "The Bachelorette" last night. Let's take a look at what else is happening around the city...


Winefest is BACK! It kicks off June 4 at 1:30 p.m. with Meredith Saturday Sessions. Guests can cook with Greg and Gabi Denton of the Argentinian-inspired Ox Restaurant in Portland, Oregon for $30. The only free event is on June 6 from 4 to 7 p.m. at Gateway Market, where attendees pair wines and food found only at the market. Read all 35 things you need to know about this year's event. For tickets to the events and more information on Winefest, you can visit


Let's talk about ranch, baby. Let's talk about you and me. Do Midwesterners really dip 99 percent of food in ranch dressing? As an Iowa transplant, I'm not sure. I can only speak for myself. Ranch, right along with queso and salsa, is more than a dipping sauce. It's a way of life. Raygun perfectly illustrated what happens when Midwest folks run out of ranch with this illustration on social media.


Of all the things to type in a Google search, Iowans really want to know more about penguins. Estately, a real estate search site, shared a map of what topics each state Googled the most over the last 12 years. Iowans Google these questions more than any other state:

  • Where is ISIS? 
  • Who is Bernie Sanders?  
  • What is a caucus? 
  • What is a socialist?
  • What is socialism? 
  • What is Snapchat?
  • Is Lady Gaga married? 
  • Is Ted Cruz hispanic? 
  • Do penguins have knees? 


Sophia Ahmad, the vice president of public relations at the Greater Des Moines Partnership, took some time to talk with us about work-life balance. Juggling your personal and professional life looks different for us all, but for her it looks like taking time outside of business hours in order to be refreshed for the next day. So, she shared some of her tips about how to navigate through life OUTSIDE of the workplace.

If you’re at a networking event where you don’t know anyone, what would you usually say to break the ice or start up a conversation with a stranger?

I always feel that connecting with others over a shared experience is a great way to start. It could be a joke about the weather or an appetizer you're both enjoying. If you can come together over a shared experience, you're one step closer to truly connecting with that person.

You've previously mentioned that listening to classical music is a great way to unwind, what's your favorite album?

I love Grigory Sokolov's recording of Bach's "Art of the Fugue." It's mind-blowing.

Where's the best place to listen to classical music live?

I would recommend going to the Des Moines Symphony, the Civic Music's series and to the Des Moines Metro Opera.


-Ameena, Juice

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