Any business will tell you that the most important asset it has is its team members. That’s what makes Rockton Rock! We work hard, we play hard and most of all we love what we do and we do it exceptionally well. We invite you to take a couple of minutes to get to know our awesome team as they give insights on a wide variety of topics.

Rockton Spotlight: Kris

What helped you get through covid?

  • The Outdoors. It was so important to get outside and go for a walk each day. With the entire family working or doing school from home and activities all cancelled, we started family walks each day. It was a great way to get some fresh air, get out of the house and catch up.
  • Online activities. Thank goodness for the ability to do so many things virtually. We were able to take online cooking classes, cheese tasting, beer tasting, flower arranging, charcuterie board creation, virtual escape rooms, as well as game nights with family and friends. It was a great way to break up the monotony of being at home.
  • Streaming Services. Thank goodness for Netflix, Hulu, Apple TV, etc. Regardless of who was around in the house, we could always find something to binge on or entertain us.

What TV show you are binging?

My list is long because I don’t like to watch the same show continuously, instead have multiples going at once. I typically have a few shows I watch at the gym, some I watch with my husband, some I watch when I’m alone, and a few I save for when I travel. Yes, it can take me a long time to finish a series. 😊 Some of my current favs are:

  • Series
    • Money Heist (Netflix)
    • The Handmaids Tale (Hulu)
    • Ted Lasso (Apple tv)
    • Queen of the South (Netflix)
    • Better Call Saul (Netflix)
    • The Americans (Hulu)
    • Homeland (Hulu)
    • Narcos Mexico (Netflix)
    • Ozark (Netflix)
  • True Story/True Crime type shows:
    • Dope Sick (Hulu)
    • The Dropout (Hulu)
    • Candy (Hulu)
    • Five Days at Memorial (Apple tv)
    • Inventing Anna (Netflix)

Years with Rockton

I’ll have been with Rockton 11 years this coming December 2022. It’s hard to believe how fast that time has gone and how much has changed at Rockton. I’m so grateful for finding this company and the people here.

Favorite pastime?

I love to have experiences, create memories and travel with my family, especially anywhere there is sun, warmth and water! We like to spend time at the lakes each summer and try get away for a beach vacation each year if possible. This past year, we were able to spend time in Mexico with family, a week at a lake home with our former exchange student here on a visit from Sweden, and then a week in the Outer Banks in NC with more family. Being near the waters and beaches is really good for the soul!

While not a beach vacation, my husband and I also recently celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary on a trip through Maine, Vermont and New Hampshire. It was definitely a trip of a lifetime and such a beautiful area of the country. I could seriously get used to seeing the beautiful coastline of Maine and eating fresh lobster every day!

Favorite recipe share (app, salad, main meal, dessert or drink)?

With the Fall and Winter seasons approaching, that means watching lots of football and hockey games at our house. One of our favorite snacks are homemade soft pretzels.They are so quick, easy and taste so good! It’s also a fun recipe to let the kids helps with. You may end up with odd shaped pretzels but still tasty!

Homemade Pretzels:

What you’ll need:

Pretzels

      • 1 ¼ cups warm water
      • 1 tbsp. yeast
      • ¼ cup brown sugar
      • 3 to 3 ½ cups flour

Dipping Solution

      • ½ cup baking soda
      • 1 ½ cups hot water

Toppings/Dip Options

      • Melted butter and flaky salt
      • Melted cheese dip (*our favorite!)
      • Cinnamon & Sugar

How to make:

      • Dissolve the yeast and sugar into the warm water
      • Add in the flour and mix until combined. You don’t need to knead or overmix.
      • Let the dough rise in a warm place until almost doubled, about 20-30 minutes.
      • Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
      • Divide the dough into golf ball sized rolls. Roll each ball into a snake, then twist them into pretzel shapes. Or just cut into bite sizes, or any other shape you fancy.
      • In a small bowl or liquid measuring cup, dissolve the baking soda into the hot water.
      • Dip the pretzels into the solution and place on a greased cookie sheet.
      • Bake for about 6 minutes until they are golden brown.
      • Remove from oven, brush with butter and salt. 

Favorite game (video, board or card game)?

Currently we have 3 games that keep rotating in the game night mix:

  • Sushi Go!
  • The Chameleon
  • Pandemic

 What do you love about working at Rockton?

I love that I’ve been a part of helping to grow the company in so many ways and I don’t just feel like a number at Rockton. I feel so lucky to be working for a company that is supportive in the thoughts and ideas of employees and gives us the ability to put those thoughts and ideas into motion. And, I truly feel grateful to work for a company that feels like a family. 

How many years have you been working in the channel?

Before coming to Rockton, I worked at Microsoft for 10 years. That gives me just about 21 years in the channel. I’m not even that old, so I’m not sure how that happened! 😊 

How do you break up your work-from-home routine?

Working exclusively from home can get very monotonous and can quickly turn into a version of “The Truman Show” movie. There are a few things I do to really help make it feel like I’m not just staring at my computer screen and the same 4 walls each day:

  • I try to get some sort of movement in every day. My preference is to get up and to the gym bright and early. It gives me a chance to get out of the house and get my body moving. By the time I’m back home, I’m ready to dive in to the daily work tasks.
  • I have my fitness watch remind me to get up and move if I’ve been siting too long. This has been a big help in combating back aches.
  • I enjoy listening to different podcasts during the day.  A few of the ones that are easy to listen to while working are: The Upside with Callie & Jeff; Sharon Says So, The Carpool with Kelly & Liz, and Armchair Expert.
  • Keep a mind of gratitude. Each day I jot a quick 30 second note about what I am grateful for. Nothing elaborate or a deep thought, It’s just a great way to remind myself to be grateful for all of the little things around me.
  • Have things planned/on the calendar to look forward to. I try have something on the calendar, such as weekends at the lake, a short trip, attending sporting events, or just going out for dinner or a movie.

Something you like about working remotely?

I feel like I have less wasted time. I don’t have to take the time to drive to and from an office, which can easily eat up almost an hour of my day. But one of the best things is not having to drive in the winter. Living in ND, you never know what the roads will be like in the deep of winter. But working from home, there can be a blizzard and I don’t have to worry about driving into an office or making it back home later in the day. And let’s be honest, there has been a lot less makeup and hair being done the last couple of years which is a time saver too! 

Funny memory that is unique to 2020-present?

Not sure it’s a funny memory, but definitely a surreal one and happened right at the beginning of the Pandemic. My daughter and I had planned to fly to NYC for Spring Break in early March 2020. The trip was literally cancelled the night before due to Broadway shutting down (yes we had planned to still go unless Broadway closed even with this Covid thing being talked about on the news). This meant we’d be home now for Spring Break, no biggie. Only days later getting the message that her college campus was shutting down and moving to full online for the remainder of her Freshman year. We quickly had to get a few things out of her dorm room (she wasn’t able to fully move out until months later) and set her up with a workspace to attend classes and take tests virtually. Only to then have my husband’s job also moved home! So, the 3 of us home on calls or video at different times took some shifting and re-decorating, but we made it work. And thankfully we still like each other!

I do have one funny memory that happened a few weeks later. Our extended family had decided we would not get together for Easter in 2020. My husband, daughter and I decided to get ourselves squeezed into the array of onesie jammies we had around the house and deliver bags of Easter goodies and crafts to our nieces and nephews. Grandma also was with us and decided to join in the fun! It was just a funny way to celebrate differently and still bring some joy to those around us.

What are you reading?

I’ve recently started “Just Mercy” by Bryan Stevenson. This book tells the story of Bryan Stevenson’s attempts to help those on death row in the US, specifically those in Alabama where he sets up an Equal Justice Initiative to try help these people who were wrongly convicted. It’s truly an eye opening look into our justice system and how unfair it can be.

Send this to a friend