Cast Blog: #FLIPPINGOUT

XOXO

Jeff Lewis a laugh riot. Just let Chris Keslar explain.

Working for Jeff Lewis is a rush. The opportunity to partake in his world is like boarding one hell of a fierce-ass rollercoaster. The adrenaline courses through your veins as you strap yourself in -- getting ready for the highs and lows, the twists and turns. Throughout the ride you are laughing, screaming, and crying -- you feel alive. It is all at once frightening and exhilarating. By the end of it, when you know you're safe and have gotten through it, you have this big smile on your face and are shaking your head in disbelief at what you have just experienced. In this strange way, you feel good and at peace. You are exhausted, but it is a satisfying type of exhaustion. The rush was totally worth it.

My favorite memory of Jeff is a brief exchange we had on my first visit to the Hancock Park residence two days after I started working for him. To me, it is quintessential Jeff Lewis. It was the first time I was able to get a glimpse into the demands of his professional life. We were standing outside the front door while a flurry of activity buzzed around us. Being new, it seemed like he was juggling nine million different things at once. There were a lot of people, all wanting and needing answers from Jeff -- trash guys, potential contractors, and the gas man along with a film crew hovering about and a phone that just kept on ringing. In the midst of all this frenetic energy, he turned to me and asked me a straightforward question:

 "Do you drink?" I chuckled and replied,

"No. I'm not a drinker."

He paused for a thoughtful moment and with the deadpan expression that I would soon come to know (and love most of the time!), he responded:

 "If you work here long enough ... you will."

Jeff Lewis is one heck of a funny guy -- and it is his biting, caustic wit that I will remember most. No matter what's going down, he usually finds a way to bring it back to the funny. He lives his life with passion and with humor. I really do admire that. He surrounds himself with people that are just as colorful and passionate in their own right -- people that can come back at him with the same type of sass! Being able to be a part of his extended family, even for the short period of time that it was, is something that I will always cherish. Despite the drama, despite the dysfunction, what I saw while working in Jeff's world was a lot of love and a lot of laughter.

My favorite memories -- the ones that have left an impression on my heart -- are the ones that weren't captured on camera or the ones that weren't aired because maybe they weren't dramatic enough. I'll miss being greeted by my favorite little guy, Oliver, and giving him belly rubs; seeing Zoila do her Britney Chavez "Gimme Gimme More" dance; cruisin' around Los Feliz in Jeff's pimp-ass cars listening to his fun mix CDs; eating lunch family style with the gang; seeing Jenni morph into her Gordy character; helping Zoila study for her citizenship test; celebrating Jenni on Administrative Professionals Day; having morning coffee talk with Zoila; helping Jeff pick out clothes for guest appearances ... the list goes on and on. These moments are the ones that have staying power with me.

In the end, I never did drink. And I never did take that bus! Or pick those avocados! But I grew as a person and learned a lot about myself -- my strengths and weaknesses as a person and as an employee.

And I laughed a lot. And, yes, I even cried a little. In short, I lived.

 I strapped myself in for the ride and when it ended I was a little bit exhausted, but it was that satisfying, I've accomplished something kind of exhaustion. It was a great experience and I'm proud of the work I did while I was with Jeff Lewis and Co. I cherished the opportunity and have absolutely no regrets -- I started with a smile and ended with a smile. The rush was totally worth it!

To everyone who has shared this journey with me: Thanks for your kindness, support, and encouragement! It's been a real pleasure.

And lastly, to Jeff, Jenni, Chris, Ryan, Zoila, Oliver, Casey, Little Chris, Stuey, and Monkey, please remember:

I appreciate you.

Always love, Chris K.

Jenni: "Crab Meat is Flying!"

Jenni dishes on the Lewis family food fight and the session with Dr. Donna.

THERE'S A NEW JENNI IN TOWN

At Gramercy Jeff is having naughty night nurse fantasies...
…about who is at my house, which he is happily sharing with the office.
The present state of my private parts is a cheery office topic.
No, no, and NO!
I am serving notice -- there is a new Jenni in town.
The out of control office antics have given a stern face to HR.

Jeff's paint line is flying off the shelves
Will more workers be needed at Jeff Lewis Design?

Lisa and Gary's Calabasas landscaping is a multiple choice challenge.
People need to agree.
Lisa wants us out, but we have plants to place, then plants to move, see the vision, and place somewhere else.
It's all about being specific.
Phase 2, which Lisa said would never happen…
Never say never.
We love you, Lisa!

Jeff doesn't stop encouraging Zoila to twerk at Gramercy. 
He also comments on my current size, shape, and choice of outfit.
Jeffrey is expanding into the area of fashion consultant.
I love my belt, Jeffrey.Chaz Dean's remodel at La Mirada needs to be cold.
The budget for this job is frozen.
Mark the contractor however is feeling the heat.

Andrew is put in charge of applying the "get it done now" pressure.
At La Mirada he finds the contractor MIA and the workers MIA.
Andy hopes this challenge will reveal his managerial skill set.

Jeff wants to take over the decisions regarding Lisa's landscaping.
This Calabasas job needs to be done ASAP.
Vanina's "I bought 'em for her" Double Ds are shared with Lisa.
My HR self is now in full fail zone.

Gramercy is keeping new hire Katrina busy with the paint line.
The work load is huge and she needs help.
Gage likes the good stress of it all.

Scott, Jeff's attorney, plans a big dinner for Jeff's dad's birthday.
He has been Tom's attorney for 30 years.
Jeff thinks a booze cruise around the harbor sounds like a plan.
Newport Beach are you ready for us?
A small problem due to someone's lack of nautical skills…
The boats have escaped!
Jeff blames his lack of censor on his family's standard of behavior.
Two boats and a food fight are their way to party hearty.
Crab meat is flying!
Yes, that is me (now a momma) throwing food and having fun misbehaving.
Even the HR "buzzkill" needs an outlet.
There goes my Mom off camera running to church to light some large candles.
Praying for me that maturity is better late than never.
Andy is now instructed by Jeff to be contractor Mark's worst nightmare.
"I'll crack your balls" is Andy's idea of in charge speak.

Gramercy welcomes new intern Romy to help Katrina.
Hope she is a survivor in Jeff Lewis Design's world of cray cray.
Gage thinks the toilet rules may be a cause for no return.

Mark's young son is visiting the La Mirada job site.
Will he need therapy after watching Andy in full managerial mode? 

Jeff and I interview potential remodel clients in Westwood.
Nikki and Robbie are both dentists and reluctantly agree when Jeff talks price.
The hard, cold, cash, remodel facts can be a dream buster.
Jeff is just the messenger, and it's not always fun. 

Andy is trying to break the new intern.
He wants her gone.
I read Jeff a list with the requirements for successful leaders.
The harsh reality is adult behavior will now be required.

On the La Mirada job site my limits are tested.
You do what you have to do.
Hand washing and dedication are the name of the game.Jeff thinks Andy's babysitting Mark has done the trick and things are moving.
Romy our newbie quit -- she lasted one day.
Everyone does not think it's a beautiful day at Jeff Lewis' office.
Honestly, HR is seriously concerned about the current office atmosphere.

Chaz does a check it out walk through at La Mirada.
Andy gets applause, Jeff is thrilled.

Gramercy is group focused ordering Jeff's undies online.
Jeff thinks his old ones will be a fun face mask for Megan.
She loudly disagrees while ripping them off -- I write Jeff up.
Jeff is informed that his idea of joking is abusive by Dr. Donna his therapist.
We need her help to get the office behavior in sync with sanity.
Dr. Donna tells Jeff he is the leader and needs to set an example.
She tells me to be comfortable stating, "Get out!"
I can do this, Deb to the rescue.
There's a new Jenni at Jeff Lewis Design.
New rules, new day.
NEXT WEEK ON FLIPPING OUT
Zoila reads her list of complaints: "Please don't call me fat piggy."
Andrew needs to remove the porno he's sharing from his iPad.
Oh no they didn't.
To make it a beautiful day at Jeff Lewis' office is going to take some serious work.