Category Archives: Friends & Family

My Daring Greatly

An old friend asked me what I thought of Brene Brown’s book Daring Greatly. I stumbled, trying to be insightful, and then gave my copy to someone who needed it. This is what I should have said. Her book has given me a new vocabulary.  It has given me a linguistic shortcut that describes what is happening when I dare ...

Upper International

My husband took me down Upper International (a double black diamond, I’ll have you know) on the last day of the ski season this year. This is important (to me) because my season started on a green circle run as I tried to remember how to ski after 25-some years. My mid-season included a Traverse of Shame after I got ...

The Leap

“I took a leap of faith this morning,” a favorite coaching client told me. I held my breath. “I took it,” he said. I started dancing around the living room. I’ve been working with this client for the past three months on a career transition. He’d been in corporate marketing for most of his career and wanted to move into ...

I’ll Show You

The Colman Pool swim test loomed large all winter. If you’re a little kid, you can’t go down the slide or the diving board unless you pass the swim test. And it’s a long way. You have to swim the crawl stroke all the way across the pool and back, without stopping. My 7-year-old daughter Z really wanted to go ...

Wild Girl

“I’m tired of being good at camp,” my 7-year-old daughter said. That got my undivided attention. “What do you mean?” I asked her. We were driving to the kids’ first day of wilderness camp, one of a string of camps this summer. “I always stay by the counselor, do what they say,” she mumbled, looking out the window. “What if you ...

Chicken Brain

We have a new chicken. It’s complicated being the new chicken. We had a flock of five happy chickens until a raccoon came for a visit one evening. I arrived just in time to see my favorite brown hen, a smart, spry girl, disappear over the back fence in a raccoon’s mouth. I guess she wasn’t smart or spry enough. ...

Riding the STP

I signed up for the Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic. And I don’t have a bicycle. Which poses a problem. This idea started last summer when I helped a friend with her fear of driving. I thought about what I’m afraid of. What fears keep me small? With some embarrassment, I’ll admit I’m afraid of balloons. Their potential for a loud, ...

The Wisdom of Dead Dogs

A favorite coaching client of mine is facing a messy divorce. “What do you want this experience to be like?” I asked him. “What do you want your memories of this divorce to be like?” As I asked the question, I suddenly thought of my beloved dog Hector Protector. I interrupted myself to tell my client about Hector. Hector was ...

Highway Fear

I have a friend who is afraid of highways. She loses sleep if she knows she is going to have to drive on one. Loses weight. Organizes her life to avoid them. I respect deep-seated fears and don’t tend to mess with them. I did wonder, though, how this fear was making her life smaller. So we came up with ...

Mess Up Mommy

I’m coaching my 6-year-old daughter’s soccer team. This is despite having played only a year of JV soccer in middle school and losing every game. My parents came to a game and cheered the wrong girl. Anyway, the league needed coaches. How hard could it be? Taking my new soccer coaching responsibilities very seriously, I crafted a careful email to ...

Frosting

Caution: this is a story about female sexuality so please stop reading if you are offended by such things and are likely to flame me. It’s my birthday today and I don’t want to be flamed. At a lovely wedding recently, after several glasses of Indiana wine, the topic turned to sex. I told the story of a friend (protecting ...

Wedding Toast

This is the toast I gave to Jeff and Jill at their wedding in Bloomington, Indiana this weekend. Jeff asked me to share it here. Hi, my name is Kathryn. I’ve known Jeff since the first day of business school, and he was the second person to hold each of my children after they arrived — so hopefully that establishes ...

Muffins

Once a week I’ve been getting up at 5 a.m. to bake muffins. I feel like a pioneer woman cooking breakfast before dawn for my family. I then get my 8-year-old son up and we head east for a day at an alternative wilderness school. I like that he’s full of warm, healthy muffins for his day of wild weather ...

Loaded Question

I read a blog post recently about asking whether there are weapons in the home before sending your child over on a playdate. (For those of you not in Seattle, two children were killed and one injured by guns in the hands of other children in the last couple of weeks.) I asked my 8-year-old son what he would do if ...

Thank You, Aliens

Aliens have abducted my husband. My Spock-like software engineer of a husband – or his alien clone – put a gratitude journal on both our phones. Who is this guy and what has he done with my husband? Every morning at 7:30 this app pops up, disrupting whatever else I happen to be doing, and I have to stop and ...