Monday, March 15, 2010

Seattle shows its finest face.

We've had a wonderful time during the visit of Cassandra and her family. At the second evening's Phoenix Chorale concert at St. Mark's Cathedral, here are her son Jeremy, daughter Rachel, husband Richard and father Leroy. It was a stunning concert.

Here we are earlier in a set of photos by Leroy at Olympic Sculpture Park, including Cassandra, who is second from the left.

Jeremy and Rachel.

Everyone's favorite Calder.


The edges of two of the ensemble pieces in the Richard Serra sculpture.

Leroy and Richard disappear into the Serra sculpture.

In the cafe. Jeremy's jacket fits right in.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

On My Birthday, Here Are My Top Ten.

As I look back on the past year, I've started to construct my own Top Ten Best Decisions.

1. The decision to leave the bank that took over Washington Mutual.

2. Taking time to both get away (the time on the train ride around the country) and spend time with some of my best friends and relatives (stops I made along the way). It really helped me sort out what I was most interested in doing next.

3. Investing in the "Rebooting Your Life" weekend that Cathy Allen and her three colleagues, who've authored a book on sabbaticals, offered at Cathy's home in Santa Fe. Combined with the quiet time on the train, I got a double shot of retrospection and energy to go forward.

4. Moving my personal training from a downtown jock shop to the University Family YMCA. I am accomplishing more. I have my son to thank for pointing out what a diverse environment the Y offers, and explaining that you can book a personal trainer there, too. Without these several mornings a week, I would not be in such good fighting shape.

5. Accepting, finally, the fact that I won't be walking in any more 3 Day Walks. The only way I could have walked this year would have been to have had bunion surgery last fall. I think I'm clear now that I'll be a supporter, but not a walker.

6. Clearing a lot of mental garbage out so that now I am able to sleep a full eight hours every night. I even remember my dreams.

7. Retooling my diet over the past years. I became a vegetarian in 1996, when I stopped drinking coffee as well. Until the last several months, I've not been able to get rid of processed sugar in my diet.

8. Having the time and mental space to keep up with and better understand my husband's work.

9. Imagining what I would truly enjoy professionally and, with Lauren's help, launching Annie Searle & Associates LLC, Risk Consultants.

10. Shaping my life and my work so that it integrates well with other goals, including those around giving back (UW teaching), around service (Seattle Public Library Foundation board), and around personal pleasures (travel, photography, reading and gardening). I'm finally getting the balance almost right.