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Archive for November, 2010 Line

Book Review: NEW COLUMN!! is a column where we review BOOKS!!! Yes, kids, it is holiday time. TIME TO CURL UP WITH A GOOD BOOK. Today’s book is a business book! Or at least WE consider it a business book. I think for the most part, I will be reviewing adventure books up in here but I have recently taken the plunge into reading a bunch of books about innovation, what business is now, and the intertwining of everything in our internet/twitter/i-chatting age.

The book of the hour is Steven Johnson’s Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation. The book is fun to read, if you like reading books by Malcolm Gladwell and Michael Pollan then you will like Johnson’s easy breezy science-y mish-mash of the histories of chemistry, geography, the internet and more. I read this book over the holiday weekend and its chapter titles: The Adjacent Possible, Liquid Networks, The Slow Hunch, Serendipity etc. etc. really lend themselves to a simple examination of one’s OWN business life! Awesome, an unexpected side-effect of reading this book. Other unexpected bonuses include appendices that include a Chronology of Key Innovation from 1400 to 2000. Invention of pencil (1560). The story of the creation of GPS? See page 183, you’ll never guess how that got cooking (unless you actually think about things like satellites a lot, which I definitely don’t). Besides simple histories, the book asks us to look into the potential unlocked by each and every connection we make, by the inspirational quotes we jot down and good old fashioned long coffee breaks talking about solutions to work problems with colleagues.

I recently watched the Rush documentary, Beyond the Lighted Stage. In the special features section, the documentarians take us on a whimsical- almost boring- but not quite, examination of the hobbies of Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart (Baseball memorabilia collecting, golfing and motorcycling in that order). While for Rush ultra-fans this hobby-based, mini-film is the chance to see what Geddy Lee’s study looks like, but for me, a light bulb went off . . . to be an innovator in your field, you need to open yourself up to the expansiveness of the universe and train your mind and heart to wrap around as much stuff as possible, get obsessed with the stuff you love the most and then stick with that stuff forever, weaving information from all of the things you know and love together forever. Steven Johnson and Geddy Lee are on the same page! If Tim Berners-Lee wants to learn to really shred (or invent the internet) then he needs to take advantage of Google’s Innovation Time Off (or work at a firm that allows him time and space to tinker with his own highly intricate projects). In other words, be your own Charles Darwin and connect the dots! See you guys next time for BOOK REVIEW: NEW COLUMN!!

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We were really happy to contribute some excellent party survival tips to Nordstrom dot com. Partying all the time is so fun . . .. but, it takes work. Just ask Eddie Murphy. On a barely related note, you should seriously read this wikipedia article about his song, Party All The Time. Back to the real news, the tips found in Nordstrom’s guide are excellent. I have taken out an excerpt here to show you my tips.

1. EAT WELL (between parties)

2. TOAST THE HOST (throwing parties ain’t easy, give ‘em some love)

These tips are crucial! Holiday cocktail parties are delightful and if your gracious host has made  . . . cooking a brisket, holding a white elephant gift exchange, decorating the house, inviting all of your friends, buying wine/beer/schnapps, making cookies, squeezing fresh lemons, creating a holiday play list, pressing festive outfits, shoveling the walk, greeting guests, making drinks, putting clean towels in the bathroom, stocking still and sparkling water, wiring the house for surround sound, tracking RSVPs and buying a few extra gifts for your plus ones and genuinely listening to you about your family Thanksgiving horror stories look and decorating the tree LOOK EASY (all while probably working a full-time job on the side) then he/she is a true HOSTESS WITH THE MOSTESS. And he/she deserves your gratitude. Bring wine, an ornament, compose a poem, SAY THANK YOU!

Other tips include but are not limited to: drink clear liquids – no one wants a party frock bummer on their hands at the beginning of the season, invest in some excellent party gear and recycle it–strapless plaid dresses DO MATTER–they look great. TAKE CABS! CARPOOL WITH A DESIGNATED DRIVER! (No one likes a drunk driver. Don’t ruin Christmas!) DO go to as many holiday parties as you can. DON’T party too hard– it’s a long season, stay consistent. But seriously, holiday time is such a wonderful time to realize how truly full your friends and family make your life. It is a wonderful time to give thanks for all the warmth that community creates. DO be generous with hugs! DON’T underestimate the deliciousness of hot cocoa STRAIGHT UP.

Without further ado . . . an excerpt from the Cocktail Party Survival Guide.

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Hello, holiday lovers. We hope you are all drinking cider and getting ready to party down with some pies and loved ones tomorrow! Seriously, what a wonderful time of year!!! Recently, The Adventure School teamed up with Seattle Metropolitan magazine to create a holiday tabletop. Our concept was it’s a Plaid, Plaid, Plaid, Plaid World. I mean, the holidays come every year, why not spice them up with some mismatched plaids this year. Nothing says, THANK YOU like plaid-o-rama. Check out the pics!

If you haven’t decided on how to decorate for tomorrow, check out this video for some tips. Start at the 1:29 mark if you are in a hurry to get to The Adventure School tips, another lady is first.

That being said, we are thankful for all of our friends, we are thankful for adventure and we are thankful that we can keep on adventuring with you throughout the holidays and beyond!!

All Photos by Ryan McVay

Other Major Deets:

You can email us at plaid@theadventureschool.com for free plaid menu and place-setting templates! (DO IT! Perfect for Christmas!)

The beautiful flatware is from friend-of-adventure, Seattle company, Rosanna.

Assorted bread loaves available locally at Macrina Bakery!
Gorgeous fall floral from our friends at Fleurish.
All other food available locally at Nettletown, 2238 Eastlake Ave E, Eastlake, call them at  206-588-3607. They are having a big feast called Nettlemas on Friday. Let the good times roll!

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One thing I strongly believe in is to ALWAYS find a way to reuse things! Last week I was sitting in my nice little “living room” corner (at the office) thinking about the hundreds and hundreds of near expired votive candles we have out in the hall. I had some jute twine sitting next to me and decided to wrap a votive with it.

I am so excited with my final product because I have found a way we can reuse these votives AND they look cool!!! You can stick a little tea light candle in there since you can’t see in. No one will ever know!

Jute Wrapped Votive By Misha

When illuminated, there are just enough small gaps between each row of jute that the glow of the candle shines through. It’s beautiful!

Enjoy!

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