January 5, 2010 – 2:23 pm
I have just finished relocating my family’s residence to Napa, California. While the move was far shorter than our journey from Atlanta, Georgia five years ago, it still required what seemed like a gargantuan effort and a dedicated team to make it happen. We moved only 60 miles this time but managed the entire project ourselves.
The experience taught me a lot about the attributes of project team members – and the difference in the view of owners versus employees in a business.
Our moving project involved 5 team members which consisted of two owners (my husband and I) and 3 part-time employees (our unpaid 2 children and one boyfriend.)
December 18, 2009 – 2:18 am
My journey resumes in the Napa Valley, more specifically at the top of Spring Mountain above St. Helena. Yes, that is snow along with some “lovely” graffiti. Love and romance go perfectly in the Napa Valley. In this case, the love is being spread throughout the vineyards. This actually makes sense to me because the real love for wine begins in the vineyards. So let’s explore further this love affair beneath the vines.
Not often thought of as romantic – it’s the dirt that makes the difference. We don’t …
December 14, 2009 – 9:06 pm
I learned the importance of strong controls the hard way. This summer, I left for a short vacation. I have a 100 gallon salt water coral fish tank and I thought I had prepared for every possible aquarium contingency before I left.
I had carefully lined up a part-time resource to cover me. I had applied all of the right technology. I had a monitoring system in place. The corals were starting to grow, algae was under control, and everything looked happy.
But, when I returned from my brief trip, my tank was destroyed, with 90% of my corals either …
December 10, 2009 – 2:54 am
While driving down the valley, I was struck by the variety of shapes, colors, and textures in the surrounding landscape and unbidden, my long-term interest in quilt making sprang to mind.
The making of quilts began as a “thrift” craft hundreds of years ago. Odd scraps of fabric left over from making clothing, empty sacks from flour and feed, and salvageable parts of worn out household items were sewn together to form warm bedding. In addition to being functional, many of these quilts were …
December 4, 2009 – 2:13 am
Well, we heard Tuesday night that we will be sending more troops to Afghanistan. We also heard that they may start coming home in 2011. Good luck with that! This rant is not about whether or not we should send more troops. I’ll leave that question to our readers.
The thing we need most from our leaders, whether in business or politics is Clear Vision. What we often get instead is a muddled lack of clarity and indecision. That’s what bothered me about Tuesday’s speech. I heard no real vision or plan, maybe you did, but I did not. What this …
November 29, 2009 – 12:29 am
We’ve all heard the stories about how St. Nick is able to make all of those Christmas Eve deliveries. What would happen if Santa’s team acted like some employees?
Dasher : “I don’t understand why Rudolf always gets to take the lead. I think I have better ideas about how to make these deliveries on time.”
Dancer: “ Let’s start in Norway then work our way back to North America. I would really like to stop by my favorite smoked salmon store to pick up a …
November 27, 2009 – 9:32 pm
Welcome back to my journey into Virgina. I last blogged about my visit to President Madison’s estate. Just down the road is Monticello, home of President Jefferson. This visit was more like Disneyland for history buffs and those who are curious about Jefferson. Once again I was thrown back in time and asked to imagine what it was like to live on this massive mountain-top estate. No matter what your political slant this self-taught man was a genius.
For instance, he designed the home and water collection system based upon his self study of …
November 18, 2009 – 8:57 pm
During a recent business trip to the East Coast I had a chance to explore part of Virgina. The photo above was taken from the balcony of President James Madison’s home. I must admit, growing up history classes bored me to tears so the thought of another history lesson wasn’t at the top of my list.
Boy was I surprised! The inspiration I received while on the tour of the Madison’s estate was unbelievable. I guess this is why I always liked field trips more than the classroom. Then again, who wouldn’t. As our docent described …
November 3, 2009 – 11:01 pm
Let me take you to Lancaster County PA home of the Amish and Mennonites. Here the longing for a simpler way of life although far from easier is practiced. During my exploration of the countryside I watched how a family would harvest their crops without the use of machinery. Across the road another family had large silos to store their corn. It is my understanding that the Amish do not believe in the use of machinery unlike the Mennonites. Both still work very hard to maintain their self sustaining …
October 28, 2009 – 12:12 am
I recently traveled to the East Coast to visit relatives and participate in my consulting accountants round table. Along the way I visited Amish country in Pennsylvania where I discovered a different way of life. Granted it isn’t one I would choose but it did provide a glimpse into how farm life used to be. You truly can appreciate how mechanization has improved many parts of a farming operation.
In wine country we still are reliant on a large labor force to perform many manual tasks. …