The Simple Things (Like Breakfast Nooks)

The week Sienna Jane was born my mother&father-in-law came into town to celebrate with us - and proceeded to build the benches for my kitchen nook!  The Non-Scotsman added a table, my mother in law sewed some cushions, and I hung a few gorgeous photos taken by my dear friend, Bess Friday.

I'm just so happy about the whole thing!


Aunt Les & Cousin Rachael

I just had the best family reunion!

I know, it's rare to say something like - but I married a man from a pretty incredible crew, and we just gathered in California for a wedding. I met (for the 2nd time) my Aunt Les and my cousin Rachael - two crazy-cool women who both mentioned wanting to come visit Seattle.

This post is my attempt to lure them up the my gorgeous, green city.  Come play!
I just went to a new restaurant about a mile from my house called Westward & Little Gull.  For me, it's an instant classic.  Why has there not been a waterfront Seattle restaurant with a dock and a raw bar, a firepit and a killer cocktail list, a gorgeous brand and a grocery store before?  It's a song you hear and wonder how it ever wasn't written.  Like "Fur Elise" or Etta James's "At Last" - was there ever a time when those songs weren't known?

Sitting on the north shores of Lake Union - you can arrive by land or sea.

and once parked, you have your pick of ambiance.  Dig into a pile of oysters at picnic tables by the dock and watch boats go by...

...sit at the raw bar, or channel your salty-dog by bellying up to the boozy bar just inside.  Or just get a table like normal folk.


Or order from the little grocery and cozy up outside with a blanket at the fire pit.  Or take your wine and cheese back onto your boat and head back to where you came from.

I've been back twice just for these wood fired gigante beans.  Yes, beans.  They're that delicious.

Les & Rachel, any place with beans this good deserves a trip.  I'll put fresh towels out now...


Therapist vs. Counselor

“You mean a physical therapist?”

This is the question I often get when I tell people I’m a therapist.  “An acupuncturist?  A masseuse?”  No.  I am a therapist of the mind: a psychotherapist. 

I’m not surprised that many people don’t picture me when they picture a therapist.  Who or what do you imagine?  I’ll tell you what I still, today, picture, (and what Google Images confirms if you do a search for "psychotherapist"):

An older white man with a groomed beard and a forest green sweater vest.
Freud with his self-congratulatory cigar.
A chaise lounge;  a small lap dog.  A dark study with leather-bound books.  Solemnity.  No laughter.


There are countless stereotypes around the therapist character, and typically the media represents the professional as a person sitting a safe analytical distance from a patient.  These actors are often white, in their late 60’s, and use only their overly active intellectual left-brain to interpret their clients every move.


The term therapist has gone through the ringer over the years and changed many hands:  psychotherapist is scary to many because it includes the word “psycho;” mental health therapist is equally intimidating because no one wants to go to someone for “mental” issues.  Counselor is a far more friendly term, as it seems more like a mentor or advise-giver, but to many practitioners (myself included) it does not do justice to the education we have undergone --- counselors don’t need a degree to get to work.   

So, on one hand, I plead the case for the title “psychotherapist.”  A psychotherapist is an archeologist, digging for the underlying roots of countless problems – looking for the golden chests of unconscious mental processes, beliefs, and patterns that lead people to get stuck in their problems. As a psychotherapist I seek to be someone who is curious where others are critical.  Instead of shaming the patient who has panic attacks, for example, I want to know where her brain has fused together particular feelings with uncontrollable anxiety. 

But on the other hand, in deciding what to name my practice, my marketing mind got all opinionated.  I want my practice to be approachable to young people, people like me.  Sure, fellow professionals may not hold the term in as much regard, but they're not who I started my business to serve.  I want my name, like me, to be accessible.  

So, I compromised with the business name:  

There, both my personalities are satisfied.