Seattle At Night

Seattle At Night

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Its the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

And yes for me that means Fall.  Today is the first official day, and also my exact two month anniversary of living in Seattle! It has gone fast but at the same time I feel like I've been living here and working at Forterra longer than that.

I'm still learning the differences in a Michigan Autumn and a Seattle one.  I can guess a few... like less crisp but sunny days to go to the pumpkin patch or apple orchard and more chilly and damp days to stay in and cuddle up with a book or a baking recipe.  Yesterday I kicked off fall with my favorite, pumpkin cookies!  Coupling that with Michigan Football (if only we had played halfway decent....) Kyle's Chili and hard ciders of various varieties and it was a perfect fall day!  And this is only the beginning of warm sweaters and apple cider.  What is your favorite part of Autumn?

This will also probably begin my realization that having 2 raincoats won't cut it, and I will have to purchase a couple more so as to stay dry for the next 9 months.

Let's hope Michigan can get their game together on their bye week, its been painful to watch the last couple games.

Last weekend I went up to Ballard to hit up the record store.  I was pretty impressed with Sonic Boom seen as I went out searching for newer albums, they had all the ones I was looking for, basically Disclosure, Queens of the Stone Age and Fleet Foxes.  When looking for older records I would say Jive Time in Fremont might be more helpful.  Then I went out for Pho.

 It really was my first meal that I went out and sat in a restaurant alone to eat.  It wasn't as bad as I thought it might be, but of course better with company.  I can see why some people plan ahead and bring a magazine or book.

Anyway I much like Ballard and think that in 8 months when I'm considering my living situation again, I will add Ballard to the top of my list if it is feasible.   It might have to wait a couple more years though...

So things are still good here with a lot on my to do list and that list is only growing.

Happy Fall!  Get into the season and be festive! There is so much to love!

<3 Suz

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Escape from Seattle

Today was just what I needed, a fresh escape from the hustle and bustle of a city and into the serene yet busy Central Cascade Mountains.
This being the largest city I have ever lived in and with no car to escape it when I please, I was over due for a little peace.  Luckily some people I know were smart enough to bring cars here to retreat to Washington State's gorgeous natural features.
We had planned on doing a different hike but it ended up being further away than we thought so last minute decided to go to Twin Falls.  It is a fairly easy trail, and about 1.5 miles to the pair of waterfalls.
It was so nice to breathe fresh air again. It was not quite as nice as the smell when I first pull off the highway and head to Higgins Lake, but definitely comparable.  Their is an abundance of bright green ferns lining the hills of the mountains under the tall trees.  A river flowed nearby providing a tranquil sound even as kids walked by whining they were tired or needed new shoes.
I love water though.  Maybe more than others, maybe not, but I could sit for hours next to a river or stream and listen to the different sounds it makes as it passes over and around rocks and through the air.  The different spectrum of colors water can take on are endlessly appealing to my eyes.  I just want to jump into pretty much every body of clear water I see.  I love the idea that it is the staple of life and beauty, but each creature needs it in their own way.
Anyway the pair of waterfalls were a wonderful reward at the end of our trail.  Even though the view was from about 100 feet above and away from the actual falls, the mist from the crashing water still floated around.  The sounds of powerful water still tranquilly filled the ears.  All in all a lovely retreat that reconnected me with the natural world.  I can't wait to explore more of the gorgeous scenery out here and have a new adventure at each unique place.

A little off topic but of course necessary, I'm extremely pleased with the outcome of yesterday's Michigan Football game. It too in a way was an escape from a city as being in a bar flooded with Maize and Blue fans happily cheering and singing the fight song brings me back to Ann Arbor again.  And of course beating Notre LAME is fulfilling since they backed out of playing us in football.  Go Blue!

Until next time,

<3 Suz

Monday, September 2, 2013

Football Saturday Adventures

Saturday kicked off my favorite season!  Yes Fall but most importantly FOOTBALL SEASON! Seen as I don't even have cable (I use rabbit ears to get news channels) I needed to find a way to indulge in the first game of the season to see our handsome Team 134 show off their mad skills.

Luckily for me, the University of Michigan Alumni Association of Seattle is amazingly large, and they have football watching parties every game at a bar called Buckleys in Belltown (note there are various locations, this is the Michigan location (learned that the hard way)).  I figured even though I'm a girl going alone to watch the game, there are other loyal football fans who would also be alone. So I arrived at Buckley's Saturday to a sea of Maize and Blue.  All the fans rocking our beautiful colors, the TV's featuring only this football game and probably at least 100 people packed into this bar, standing room only!  How amazing right?  I felt right back at home like it was an away game at the Brown Jug.  I just happened to come in at the right time and strike up conversation with a couple people who ended up scoring a table, luckily. They were the perfect football watching buddies whom I hope to run into again at these Saturday events! Obviously the game was amazing too!  Not that I had any question on this game if we would win, but it is such an amazing feeling to be so far from home yet in a room full of people screaming and cheering for Michigan.  We even overheard people talking about where they can find Vernor's in Seattle.  Jill, who I was sitting with, knew the answer to that and where I could find a bar with Bell's beer too!

After the game ended Jill and I decided to check out this Whiskey bar down the street. It had a relaxed vibe, and on a Saturday at 5 pm is was just as sporadically filled as you'd expect it to be. I've learned that its harder to find girlfriends in a new city than it is to met guys, so it was great sitting at a bar with another girl just talking about hiking and other fun places to go in Seattle.  Eventually a guy on each of our sides were involved in our conversation, except the guy on Jill's side was much more laid back and funny.  I ended up next to the guy who wanted to talk about blood types and blood diseases while wearing a shirt about donating blood... so obviously I wasn't that into talking to him and kept joining in with Jill, the guy next to her and the bartender.  We were having a great time!
Then the guy next to me paid his tab, got up and pointed at Jill and said you are awesome and pointed at me and said you are rude and you are probably both lesbians and not even worth my time talking to. I looked at Jill shocked at the number of angles what he said are offensive.  After he walked out we all joked about how if a girl doesn't want to go home with a guy she is clearly a lesbian, he must have drank way too much, and how we were having a great time, what was his problem.

But when I walked home I thought about the larger implications of what he said.  What does he mean by waste of time?  Why can't people just enjoy a conversation at a bar without expectations of more or wasting someones time?  Even if we had a good conversation that was witty and engaging, I wouldn't have gone home with him.  I didn't ignore him, I answered what odd questions he asked me, I don't think that's rude, nor to be still engaged in the conversation the friend I came here with is having. And why did he have to bring lesbians into it?  What if I were a lesbian and we did have a good conversation?  Who cares? He clearly had expectations for his visit to the whiskey bar that I don't think anyone in their right or drunk mind would have indulged in.

Anyway, my message is that this 35 year old dude from Tacoma needs a reality check and guys, please don't go into bars with agendas.  Its much more fun to talk with someone and have a good time casually then to feel like there are expectations that just because I say hi to you means I have to go home with you.  And to everyone that human interaction is still okay, even if it ends at the bar, it is okay to meet people and have fun and leave it there no matter what sexual orientation you are.

Still laughing and having fun here though! ;)

<3 Suz

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Catch Up!

Why haven't I been to a show yet?  Really there is no excuse, that is even something I can go do on my own.  I will do that soon.  There is practically always tunes blowing out my Bose whenever I'm home. It even helps me right now to sit down and write with a record spinning.
I mean I suppose exploring many different neighborhoods is a decent excuse.  In my head I'm already shopping for a new neighborhood, not that there is anything wrong with mine.  Now that I'm here though and able to see the different moods of the various areas, I can better picture myself settling in here.
[flip record over]
Hosted my first dinner party last week!  That was quite lovely if I can say so!  It also gave me a hard deadline for having my apartment clean, unpacked and nice looking.  It was so nice to see my friends from college, one who lives in Seattle and one who lives in NY visiting him.  After work I went to Pike's Market to get fresh flowers, baguette and Salmon.  How friggin cool is that?  Sometimes I have to remind myself that that is my life now and not just a really cool thing I got to do once or twice.
I still haven't made my mind up on the Seattle Freeze, but I think it says a lot that pretty much all the people I have been hanging out with are not originally from Seattle. Then I thought about the reverse scenario, I'm a pretty independent person, don't always need to be with others and can easily entertain myself.  Its more activities out and about that I like to have someone with me for. So maybe I like it here so much because I have some of the Seattle Freeze already in me, or some sort of different version? But then I looked at my schedule and for the last few weeks basically every day after work I've had plans, so I can't be that freezy!  Really we all know I was living a lonely life before in the small town and have found an exciting area for a lovely balance of working, exploring, excitement and of course my ME time!
I'll cheers to that!  Happy Sunday!
<3 Suz

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

A bit of what I do in Seattle!

Well I've been with my new job for a week now, and it is such a different environment from my last place.  Oh and its totally freakin' awesome because Pearl Jam donates money to us and Nordstrom is a business partner!  I'm sure there are more amazing connections but those are the ones I've learned thus far.  I thought I'd share this link about Nordstrom's partnership with us:
As mentioned before it is a larger organization, which brings a lot of differences that I'm still learning and comprehending.  Right off the bat our service area is several counties, in fact we are a regional conservancy.  The projects we are working on are typically at a much larger scale, usually at least 100 acres but we have a 20 acre project and a couple thousand acre projects.
It is so rewarding knowing that while I haven't yet dove into these projects yet, I am and will continue to contribute to saving the amazing Cascades and the stunning Olympic regions. Having such rewarding work is what helps get me though the long days or the frustrating days.  Because of this, I think it would be hard for me to work for a corporation.

Another major aspect of my life that has changed out here is that I take the bus to and from work every day.  Sometimes I think of how silly it is that I'm taking a bus ride that without traffic would take like 10 minutes and ends up taking 30 minutes plus sometimes.  But I haven't gotten to the point yet that I want to get up an hour earlier to walk 2 miles.  Hopefully I'll get tot he point where I'm walking at least one way or half way there, but that requires toting around extra shoes too.

Until next time!
<3 Suz

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Welcome to Seattle!

Here I am, in Seattle!  I know I need to blog more and I believe it is a productive use of my free time, especially while I am experiencing some of the Seattle Freeze (I'll explain later...). I've been here almost 2 weeks, am still in the long process of adjusting my new studio to fit my living needs and am ready to take on the big city!  I have so much to think about and discuss on here, but I will try to take it one step at a time!  

Okay, this Seattle Freeze I keep hearing about, basically it is the condition of native Seattlians to not be very welcoming and friendly, but to be cold, hence the freeze.  Transplants or new people have to work hard and long to break into the native Seattle crowd.  I haven't yet decided if I believe in this yet, I don't think I've been here long enough.  

Whether or not it exists, there are more then enough transplants to the city.  A lot of them for the obvious reasons; Microsoft, Boeing and Amazon.  I'm just so anxious to break into the music scene here though, nothing makes me more happy than live music!  I'm not afraid to go to shows by myself, but right now its a matter of knowing where to go and if its in a safe place!  

Also I must mention that I've been working at my new job for 3.5 days!  Its so odd going from a small office of 3.5 people in the middle of nowhere to being on the 22 floor of a high rise in an open office with at least 30 other people, 60 staff total.  It seems like a fun environment to work in and the people seem to get along well, its just a matter of again breaking into the office culture.  I haven't dove into my work too much as I'm doing a lot of training.  This type of land protection is very very different from what I was doing before, which keeps it interesting and complicated.  I can't wait to tell more about it!  

Well, back to varnishing my new book case!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Continuing Education

I just started an online Intro to Finance class via this awesome new great website called Coursera.  Maybe you have heard of it, maybe not, but you should take a look around.

 It started off with about 5 great universities, including my Alma Mater, University of Michigan.  Recently about 10 more colleges have joined in to provide free online classes in a variety of subjects. They literally have something for everyone, from Finance, to World Music to Pharmacology to Sustainability, they did a nice job with the variety.

  I chose to subject myself to something I'm weak at, finance.  I'm so excited to be able to challenge myself for free from home and be learning things for free from great professors with great programs.  I just finished week 1 out of my 10 week class.  It wasn't too bad, except this was the easy week according to my Business School professor who created 2 hours or under in videos every week as our lecture and we have an online quiz to complete every week as well.

While we don't have direct contact with the professors, they definitely picked up on our classes struggle to get all that into one week.  Twice now our professor has been looking over our class forum to help each other out, and he has noticed struggle and altered the set up of the class to accommodate our needs, not difficulty wise, but more time wise.

I will be more than happy to report back once my class is over.  I even signed up for one on the status of the US farm system, which I know is suffering, that starts in January!

So if you are looking for quality continuing education to do in between your favorite TV shows after work,  Coursera should have something that interests you.

Check it out!

Also my 3rd lavender post should come soon!  I made an excellent batch of cookies with it!  I'll share the recipe!

Take care!