Watching the Vine

March 24, 2016 at 12:05 pm (niles, thoughts) (, , )

Running a  small business is  difficult.   I  watched Annie , Margo  and  the  rest of  the crew create  a successful  restaurant and  I  learned a  few  things.

Connect.  I  don’t  mean ‘make connections’ in  the business  glad-hand way,  but  truly  connect.  Talk to  the people  in  the neighborhood.  Tell them  what  you  are  thinking ,  what  you  want  to  do , what issues  you are facing and how you  want to  deal  with  them.

At  one point,  the Vine took reservations.  But this was  actually blocking  business.        The  restaurant could be almost  empty,  but  they  couldn’t seat anyone – because reservations were headed  in.  Annie  talked to  a  lot of people before she stopped  taking reservations and  the transition went  smoothly

Let  people  help.   in the case  of  the Vine – painting , tables , etc wouldn’t be  there without  help.  And it  is  another way  to  connect , of course.   A  little  community  ownership never  hurts.

Be  open, frank.   I  know   a bunch  about the financing of restaurants now.   I  know  why  Salmon is a  big  feature on  the menu.  I can  tell you  all about  the restaurant advantages to  kegged  wine.  Annie’s  openness about  the business  side of  things,  made  it  really  easy to be frank  in  return.

Love it.  No  matter  what  you do – some days are  just  drudgery.  Yes,  Annie loves  food.   but she  also  loves the restaurant.   There has always been  pride and pleasure  in  her voice when  she  talks about  The Vine.

Thank You


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November 17, 2015 at 9:34 pm (Uncategorized)


I  grew  up  with  dogs. I  thought all  cats  were snobby  and  standoffish.   Over  the  years  I’ve  learned  that  isn’t  true.   And the variation of personalities – is  endless.   Tonight  we lost Nathaniel.   Our  miracle  boy .   2and  half to  3  years  ago – he  suddenly couldn’t  walk or see straight.  he saw a cancer specialist – – much  too  often  for  his  taste.   But  lived  and lived well.   he  purred  for  us,  ran to  the door when we got  home,  and yelled  at  us  for  not opening the  door  to  the  world  of  grass . he mauled  the evil  vets  as often  as possble.   he  was our  Jeckle  and hyde boy.

he  will  be  missed

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last night’s Dream

September 14, 2015 at 11:59 am (Uncategorized)

I  have  strange  dreams.   My  sister  J  recalls  a  lot  of  them I  have told  her .  And I  know  she’ll like  this one.  I  dreamed  that  I had  some how acquired a pet   snail.   Big  enough that  it  just  fit  in  my  hand.   When  I  moved  it  too far  from any surface  it  would reach  out  and try to touch something  to  use as a  base.   At  one  point it got  away  from  me and was running (  yes  running)  all  over  the living  room  furniture .  Yes,  it got lint  and fuzz on  itself.   My  friend  B  was  not  very  happy   with  me (  Now,  Beth  we  know  you’re excited about  your  new  pet  but ,  but  we can’t  have  it  running  all  over  the  furniture.)   Eventually  I  had to   return my  snail  to  the proper  environment.   which was  the tide  line  on  an  ocean  beach.   Yeah.   So  I  dreamt I  had  an amphibious,  salt loving  snail as a  pet.   that  could move  really  fast.

I  have  no  explanation

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I probably won’t remember all of the books I’ve read ….

May 1, 2015 at 12:09 pm (book review, books) (, , )

The magicians : a novel  Lev Grossman

Sorry  -not  great.   it  took a  long time  to  get  started.   not  magical.   not  a grown up  harry  potter.   but I might  read  the second one,  because I  was promised  it gets better.

Parasite  Mira  Grant

Symbiont Mira  Grant

I was going to  explain – but it is easier  to  say  she  has an amazing  story  telling ability  – In the midst of  a  big  giant world changing  event  – she is still telling the story  of  individuals -that  would be  interesting even  without  the disaster. Book 3 comes  out  November 24th.

The darkest part of the forest / by Holly Black

 I love  Holly Black.  Dark  fairy  tales  are  her specialty.  In  this  book, there is a town  that is on  the border of a  forest  where fairy  tales  are  real – all parts  of  them.   There  is  even a  glass  coffin  with a prince  in  it.   The relationship  between  the  town and forest has been  balanced,  but suddenly  more  of the evil  side  has  visible.   Then then coffin  breaks…   

The story of Owen : dragon slayer of Trondheim E. K. Johnston

Excellent.   Way  better  than  I  expected.   Current  time  period – but  with  added  dragons.


pretty  sure  I  read a few  more books,  but I  just  don’t  remember ….

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Goal 1000

March 24, 2015 at 1:05 pm (exercise, fitness) ()

I  joined  this challenge on  3/21/15   the Goal – walk/hike/run  1000 miles  between  now  and  winter  9 dollars  and  half  the fee  goes  to  make a  wish.  If  an  individual  is doing it  this means 3.26 (? I’ve  forgotten the exact  number ) a  day.   something like  25 miles  a week.

some people  are  doing  this as teams so  they  are able to  split  the mileage, i  am  doing this  as  an individual .

It  has  been  exciting to  see people  take  up  the challenge.  Long  hikes,  short  walks  , and runs of all  lengths.  but….

There  has been a lot of  hoopla  about ‘intentional’ (  meaning exercise )  vs walking around miles.

here is  why  I  joined:

1) the  person who  brought  it too my  attention  has  been  working really  had to  improve  his level of fitness.

2)  i have diabetes  and  the very  best  thing you  can  do  for diabetes is – move  the big  muscles.

3)  A big  goal  is a kind  of  fun .   Long  term  challenges give  you  room  to  form  habits ,  and  deal  with  real  life  events  like – getting sick  or  busy  lives  or….

So  I  am  counting every step I  take.  I   should  reach this goal without any  serious  problems.  5 days  a  week – I  walk  over  3  miles  a  day.   Only  two  days  a  week  do  I  have to  work on  walking.   good  for  me.

If  you  are a  runner,a hiker  or  distance  walker  the real challenge  might be  to  do  it  without  counting  you walking around  steps.  good  for  you.   I’d  like  to  be  there  some day.   When  I  trained for  the SGK  walk,  I  might have  been  there.   Not  now.

Why  I  think  walking around  steps count (  for  me )  .   There  are studies  out that  suggest  no  matter  how much  you  work  out  – sitting for  long periods  of  time is  not  good  for  you.   As  a  kid – I  read  that  our  bodies are  mostly  water.   As  an adult  – I  knew  what  happened to  water if  it  sat  still too long.   Very  very  gradually  I  went  from being a  couch  potato  to  someone who has  a  hard  time  sitting still too long .  But  sometimes  I  still have to  remember to   move.

I  do  have  some  secret  goals — I’d  like to  get  to 1500  miles.   and  maybe  next  year   not  have to  count  my  walking around  miles . However, I need to get  to  1000  miles  first.

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March 16, 2015 at 12:41 pm (Uncategorized)

I  saw  this  posted  on Facebook Aging while female is not your worst nightmare. I had a vague revelation: I’ve never been too worried about getting old.

I have had a few people tell me not to get old, oddly, they have all been men.

I do get startled by my grey hair in the mirror sometimes – but I spent more time with dark hair , so I am guessing that will change. I don’t love my face wrinkles, but I am surprised by my hands starting to crinkle.

Cat calls stopped a long time ago, but I swear that the inappropriate comments from men on the other side of the library desk have increased.

Physically, how I work had to change a long time ago – I have to work around my diabetes and asthma. I think they are better because I don’t work ’til I hurt anymore.

As for my voice, I feel it is stronger and more powerful than before. You can’t shout me down anymore. You can argue with me, but I am better at hearing when you aren’t listening. And I am ok with just making a statement and letting it just sit there. It isn’t like people were listening when I was young.

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