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Behind-the-Scenes: I Was Invited to Oprah’s Favorite Things

Oprah's Favorite Things 2017
OK Friends, I have some really exciting news, Santa is real, and her name is Oprah Winfrey. That’s right, and I know this because I received a very special holiday invite to attend Oprah’s Favorite Things 2017 big reveal as an influencer and brand ambassador for OMagInsiders.  For the last 20 years, O Magazine curates a list of Oprah’s Favorite Things every holiday season. This year, the audience was gifted almost each one of the 102 products, and I’m especially grateful to all the wonderful sponsors who participated, making this magical night possible for all of us.

O Mag Insiders Brand Ambassador Logo


For those following me on Instagram and Facebook, you’ve already seen the big news, but for those who catch up on all things The JetSet Family here on the blog, brace yourself. Are you sitting down? I have some REALLY BIG news. Over the summer I was asked to become a brand ambassador for the one and only O, Oprah Magazine! As promised, I will still be sharing more regarding my role as an O Mag Insider here on the blog, but for now, I wanted to share something really exciting that I had to keep a secret, until now.


You Are Invited to Oprah’s Favorite Things 2017!

O.M.Gosh and it was <<sing it with me>> f-a-b-u-l-o-u-s!!!

Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be invited to attend Oprah’s Favorite Things Holiday Gifts reveal. Seriously, how is this my life? I hopped on a flight from LAX to NYC, and before I knew it, I was in an UBER Black hightailing it to Hearst Tower. I promptly found a seat at a high top table and made some new friends from Extra and Access Hollywood. My new bestie, Darius and I immediately bonded over our how we were both so grateful to be a part of this iconic celebration. I mean, how could you NOT be?


Walking In an Oprah Wonderland

The room was transformed into Oprah’s own personal Winter Wonderland, and I can’t tell you how much I appreciated this since the weather is a lot different in So Cal. This was exactly the right amount snow, and the chill factor was on point. But what I didn’t know was it was this random November evening was about to become Christmas morning featuring Oprah as Santa.

Oprah's Favorite Things 2017

You Want JOY? I’ll Bring The Joy!

And that’s when Oprah appeared like the Angel atop the Christmas tree with a bottle of tequila to help spread holiday cheer. Photos or it didn’t happen, right? Well, it did, and here’s the proof.

I love her. No, people I seriously luuuuuuuuuuuuuuuve her. And the best part? None of us knew if she was even coming! This was not only the biggest surprise but the biggest gift of the night.

The moment she walked in the air changed. I’ve never witnessed anything like it.


Oprah's Favorite Things 2017 Arrival

When Oprah Wants to Do a Shot of Tequila…

You do a shot of tequila! Duh.

No question, you raise your glass and pray for the best. It doesn’t matter that you haven’t touched tequila since that awful college experience 20 years ago, you let that PTSD energize you, renew you, and give you life because Hallejulah…It’s OPRAH and this is the most famous person you’re ever going to do a tequila shot with.

PTL, I did the shot and lived to tell. Guess what? It was purdy good. I am definitely more of a sipping kind of gal, and not so much of a shot girl.


Oprahs Favorite Things 2017 Casa Dragones Tequila


You’re probably now going to ask me if Oprah told me to jump off a bridge would I? Well, that’s a moronic question. The answer? Of course, I would. YES! Double YES! Because you and I both know the fabulous Ms. O would have the most beautiful yacht imaginable waiting for me down below. It’s all about trust people and I trust Oprah. I mean c’mon! Look at this picture.


Oprah's Favorite Things 2017

The Holy Trinity

So the Holy Trinity exists people, oh, yes it does. The present-day trinity is none other than Adam Glassman, Gayle King, and Oprah Winfrey. Let’s put it this way, they are either the Holy Trinity or We Three Kings, because this night we were BLESSED with gifts that would shame gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Even Sweet Baby Jesus would say, “Myrrh? Where’s my Casa Dragones and cashmere?”


Oprah's Favorite Things 2017

Live Your Best Life

Guys, Oprah read to me.

THE Oprah read to us.

From HER book.


This was by far one of the most moving moments of my entire life. Again, HOW is this MY life? Oh, right. Oprah taught me when I was 10 how to will this.


Oprah's Favorite Things 2017

The World According to Gayle

I want to live in Gayle’s world. No, really… I do. She comes across just as witty, beautiful, and completely ready to take on this dream come true event, in real life as she does on TV. She not only co-hosted the evening with Adam Glassman but modeled the clothing making each piece look amazing. I was especially blown away watching her in action, knowing that both she and Adam had been on the morning news circuit even before most of us probably wiped the sleepers from our eyes, it was impressive how well they presented themselves. Me? I would’ve been the remake of “Weekend at Bernie’s” had I been responsible for a 20-hour day like this.


Oh, have I mentioned I have the BIGGEST girl crush on Gayle? We’re talking bigger than my Busy Phillips girl crush. And that’s YUGE. Will you please look at how fierce this woman is? Swoon.


Oprah's Favorite Things 2017

Oprah's Favorite Things 2017

How Fabulous is Adam Glassman?

One of the highlights of the evening was meeting Adam Glassman, I only wish we had more time. The one thing I can say is everyone on Oprah’s team has this magnetic energy that radiates from within, making you want to be around them. You instantly become inspired, grateful, and want to lift everyone up around you. This is how I felt when I met Adam.

I’m much more shy in person than people realize and haven’t quite mastered the art of small talk. But there was no way I was leaving without introducing myself to the man that made this entire evening possible. He’s not only fabulous and has a great personality, but he felt like home. I say this because I was a wee bit intimidated. That was until I said, “Hello, my name is Nicole Standley, and I’m a new member of the O Mag Insider team. I also have a travel + lifestyle website, The JetSet Family.” His response? “I know!” It was that moment not only did I feel embraced, but welcomed.

Adam Glassman knew who I was.


For someone obsessed with logistics as I am, this was such a grand moment for me. Thank you, Adam. I’m grateful for such a HOLIDAZZLING evening.

Oprah Elves and Santa Servants

And Team O thinks of EVERYTHING. Each table was assigned our very own O Elf, and Santa Servants to help us with our bags upon bags of swag. Just how much swag are we talking about? Let’s just say, this was the biggest Oprah’s Favorite Things ever at 102 gifts and we received most of them, with an exception of a small number that were raffled off to lucky audience winners.


Oprah's Favorite Things 2017


And let’s talk about the Santa Servants donning tuxedos we were each assigned. They not only took care of handling our overflowing gift bags but waited for us until UBER arrived, loading the SUVs up with all Oprah’s Favorite Things. Am I dreaming all of this? If so, please don’t wake me because I don’t ever want to wake up.

And no, we did not get to take them home. Sadly, they didn’t make it on Oprah’s Favorite Things list. I’m sure it was just a simple oversight and they’ll be on it in 2018.

Oprah's Favorite Things 2017 Santa Man Servants

I Big Puffy Heart My Boss

None of this would be possible without this amazing Oprah Elf. I am so fortunate to be a part of her team, and beyond grateful for the opportunity to be a brand ambassador and influencer for O, Oprah Magazine with her at the helm. She’s smart, crazy beautiful, creative, and truly understands what it takes to navigate a group of super talented influencers which is no easy task. I’m so excited to be a part of her vision, I know I’m going to learn so much.

Oprah's Favorite Things

My Big Black Uber XL SUV Sleigh

Remember how I said Oprah’s team thought of everything? They even arranged for us to have complimentary UBER SUV car service to haul all of our loot home. This was the beginning of a beautiful friendship between myself and UBER because I spent the rest of my time in NYC getting around via UBER Black and it was awesome. I learned a lot this trip. One of my biggest takeaways? That I’m not really a public transportation kind of gal, and UBER Black allowed me to get where I needed to go quickly, safely, and affordably.

Answers to The Big Questions

Since announcing that I was heading to the event, I received the same three questions from near and far. From long-time readers, friends, family, and complete strangers.

How do you get to be a part of Oprah’s Favorite Things audience? Do you get to keep everything on Oprah’s Favorite Things list? Where can I buy items from Oprah’s Favorite Things? Good news, I’m excited to share that I have the answers!

The audience is made up of 100 guests and is invite-only, making it the most coveted holiday event for the last 20 years. As for how to get on this super VIP guest list, from what I understand each year it changes. I was invited as one of 8 influencers, the rest of the audience consisted of selected media and fans. This event is something you cannot buy tickets for, and the invitation is non-transferable.

How to get on Oprah's Favorite Things


As for which items we are bringing home, each year the layout of the reveal changes. For this particular event, we went home with almost everything on the list! This was a big treat because from what I understand, some years they haven’t gifted as much. Stay tuned on Instastories and Facebook Live because I will be sharing everything we received once my swag arrives from NYC! I cannot wait to open the boxes with you.

Where can you buy Oprah’s Favorite Things? That’s easy, just click on one of the photos below!

Shopping Oprah’s Favorite Things with JetSet mOm

Which items on Oprah’s Favorite Things do you want most?

We would love to know more about you what items you would like most. By sharing your tips, experiences, and recommendations in our comment section below, you help fellow members in The JetSet Family community decide the best fit for them and their families. Let us know what you liked most, or if you have any questions about Oprah’s Favorite Things List.


Promotional consideration is courtesy of  O, The Oprah Magazine as I am an #OMagInsider. On occasion, contributors of The JetSet Family are invited to experience gifted products and services. This practice does not hinder the influencers’ point of view. Our descriptions have always accurately reflected our overall feelings, and The JetSet Family will only ever share things that we genuinely love and believe worthy of being featured. This post may include affiliate links, but that’s OK. Any purchases made using these links helps The JetSet Family blog continue to share great content with our readers. Thank you for supporting us and our sponsors.

Review overview
  • Laurie November 13, 2017

    Wow! What a dream come true! What I wouldn’t do to be on Oprah’s Favorite Things! Or even just meet Oprah! Or even be in the same room as Oprah!!! If Oprah told me to jump off a bridge, there’s no doubt I would do that too! I’m so excited that you got to go! <3

  • Marie November 17, 2017

    WOW! I have goosebumps reading your post. I can feel your enthusiasm because that’s exactly how I would be if ever given the opportunity to attend her favorite things show…let alone MEET Oprah! Congratulations on being selected and thanks for sharing the inside scoop with your readers – this is AMAAAAZING!

  • Victoria @TheBritishBerliner November 22, 2017

    Wow! What a great opportunity. Opraaaah! I can feel the happiness that swelled from you by just reading this post, and looking at all the wonderful photography.

    I totally understand where you’re coming from!

    I attended an invite-only evening event with Prince William and Kate Middleton over the summer, and I was the same. At some point, Kate stood write in front of me. I’m known for having the gift of the gab, but all I could do was sweat profusely, and stare!

    Congratulations Nicole. Well deserved.


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