I had the best time on Sunday, meeting up with my friend Dana for coffee at WaterStreet Coffee Bar in Iowa River Landing and then walking through the Iowa City Arts and Craft Show. It’s become an annual event for me to go to the show and gather a gift stash of delicious treats for my friends. Here’s this year’s take!





Vacation dreaming

We’re hanging out on our deck tonight – spring is definitely here. It’s in the 80s… I think Mother Nature might be overcompensating for that ice cold winter she brought to us. No complaining, we agreed! Spending the late afternoon dreaming…about summer vacation…just a mere 2 months away…here’s a  little preview of our itinerary:

Kotor Montenegro (UNESCO World Heritage Site)


Schkoder, Albania

Skadar Lake

Kruja, Albania


Himara, Albania


Saranda, Albania (Butrint UNESCO World Heritage Site)


Corfu, Ionian Island, Greece


7 little quotes with big encouragement


I’ve been consumed by work, focused on trying to capture my strategy in terms that different audiences might understand. Many times I’ve thought I must be speaking in a foreign language – and, in some ways, I am I guess.

I get an idea, and I sprint to capture it. Sometimes there are hurdles, and I seize my energy and catapult over them. Sometimes I find myself running a marathon. It’s all quite exhilarating – and, of course, challenging. With it, I see I’m stretching and growing – becoming a stronger runner.

Sometimes I run out of steam. Today I felt like I hit the wall. I’d been running a long time, thinking I was near the finish line. Seems, though, I mistook the half marathon finish as the end – reality is that there’s likely another half marathon to go before I can claim victory.

On a whim tonight as I was leaving my office, I pulled 212 degrees: the extra degree off my book shelf. I found myself encouraged. I think I’ll slow down my pace, but, I WILL keep going!  Here are 7 little quotes with big encouragement from the book.

  1. Inches make the champion. ~Vince Lombardi
  2. Many of life’s failures are men who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up. ~Thomas Edison
  3. Triumph often is nearest when defeat seems inescapable. ~B.C. Forbes
  4. Never stop. One always stops as soon as something is about to happen. ~Peter Brook
  5. You give 100% in the first half of the game, and if that isn’t enough, in the second, you give what’s left. ~Yogi Berra
  6. You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it. ~Margaret Thatcher
  7. and let us not be weary in well doing; for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. ~Galations 6:9

Helping me stand tall


I am not sure what I would do without all the amazing people in my life that help stand up when I feel like shrinking down into a small insignificant ball. Sometimes I forget that I am enough, that I am already amazing, that I have everything I need. And, always, always, there are people in my life that remind me of the light, right there inside.

I made up so many stories this week…one’s I don’t really care to share. I’ve rewritten them all. The revised story line invited by the LOVE-ly people in my life.

Jim, right there at the end of a day filled with defeat. My friends there reminding me of things like “Your vulnerability is your strength.” and saying things like “…you will not be defined or diminished by what is happening now. You have overcome much greater challenges, grown immensely in understanding and grasp that the essence of who you are is what really matters–whether others respond to it or not.”

Where does a girl get so lucky to have such strong and wise people in her life, their arms outstretched to keep her from falling, their voice cheering her on?

I am standing tall, grateful for the gift of the challenges I face and the lights in my life,

Spring is coming

???????????????????????????????Today’s gratitude…

Friendship and flowers.

Thankful for my friend Kate who gave me this beautiful Amaryllis for my birthday. With another dusting of snow on the ground and spring technically just days away, it offers me hope, and smiles, and love.


Designing for leadership growth

Design Lab WordleI love my new job.

I see possibilities – where we can make a big difference for people. I am creating new things, and shaping how that creation happens. The stuff I am doing impacts people in powerful ways.

I said in my previous post that last week in NY was one of the best I can remember in my career. I’ve been thinking about why. Because my manager trusted me. Because I got to experiment. Because I was creating. Because I was growing and supporting others in growing. Because I was doing something I found meaningful. Because of the way the team engaged, found their chemistry and created ‘jazz’.

So what exactly was I doing? Creating a leadership experience for those with potential to become future executives. I brought an amazing team together in a ‘design lab’ to co-create something innovative, different, new. We looked at the journey to becoming an executive and laid out how we might support growth along the path. What we created completely blew me away – not only in terms of our vision for the experience we can create for future executives but also in terms of how we all grew and learned from each other and co-created while we were together.

Thanks to my leader role-model, Jill, for believing in me and what I see. Thanks to the team – Chitra, Elizabeth, Ginger, Jennifer, Paul and Marcus – for putting their hearts and minds into the possibilities. Thanks to my husband, Jim, for his patience as I’ve immersed myself in this work.


photo courtesy of Silvia Mihailescu, taken in Saitama, Japan

photo courtesy of Silvia Mihailescu, taken in Saitama, Japan

Nearly 50 degrees today. Sunshine.

Looking out the window into the back yard: No snow. Just the earthy brown ground.

Just the Squirrels running about. The birds chirping.

A great day to get outside.

A great day for a run along the Iowa River with Jim. Been a week since I’ve had my running shoes on.

Hungry for the rhythm of it, the freedom of it, the health-full-ness of it.

No more ice on the river. Flowing freely. Filled to the brim. Hoping no floods this year.

Good time to be home. In Iowa. With Jim.

Exciting week in NY. One the best I can remember in my career.

Now it’s time to rest. to recharge.

And reach for the hope of spring.