Thursday, March 27, 2008

Fireplace - Now you don't see it, Now you do!

Here's Jennifer measuring for the sink cabinet, and notice the hole where the fireplace is going to go in . . . and then it's suddenly in! Kate M. also captured on film a rare moment where I'm actually making Kirk smile, not cry. This week, Mitch had in his weekly notes item 4.11: "No more changes."

Now Mitch, I've watched all the design shows, and Opening Soon by Design (when it was on), and it seems to me that we're very light on changes compared to the average Restauranteur (at least the ones who land on reality TV, anyway).

But we will try harder to limit our creative expression from this point forth.

This week was the first time the Downtown parlor seemed truly real to me.

Maybe it was the fireplace going in.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Real Parlor Games

Lisa (our most excellent New Products and Training Manager), just presented me tonight with a book that she and her husband Mike found antiquing this weekend (yes, yes, she admits it is "nerdy" to antique). It's called, "Parlor Games," by Helen Hollister, published in 1922.

It's full of brilliant exercises. I actually really love parlor games (it wasn't just a convenient name for my blog). Board games, charades, pictionary, bridge, you name it. I'm on a quest to amass enough social power to be able to force people to come to my dinner parties and pretend that they love these games as much as I do.

Here's a perfect example from page 35:


"One player goes from the room, while the leader, providing himself with pencil and paper, writes down all the remarks uttered by each member of the party, in turn, concerning the absent party." (JP: But it gets even better).

"He, being then recalled, the remarks are read to him while he endeavors to guess the names of the originators. If he succeeds in tracing a remark to its source, the person having uttered it must go from the room to be slandered in turn."

Now look me in the computer screen and tell me that this wouldn't have added an exciting spark to your last gathering.

Perfect for weddings, birthdays, and corporate gatherings!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

T Minus Seven Weeks

The temporary sign is up outside our new downtown parlor! (Thanks Keith and Kate!). And Danielle & Lucy, who modelled for the photo in the sign.

And drywall is starting to go up, as Kirk points the way.

We've got LOTS of plugs in the manager office, Jeanne! So you can plug in your laptop AND your breast pump.

At seven weeks before opening (May 1st!!), my internal panic alarm has started going off. I think this is the point at which, last time, I had to abandon luxuries like time to shower.

But I'm so lucky that I've got such amazing people with me this time.

"Don't worry," say Amy, Anna and Patience, as we plan our recruiting events.

"Don't worry," says Kate M, who's keeping us on track on our downtown buildout.

"Don't worry," says Kate G, as she comes up with one awesome party offering idea after another.

"WORRY!!!" says Jeanne. But I'm chalking some of that up to the fact that she's having a baby in May, just as we open downtown. And I think she's trying to do everything she can to have us not calling her up in the Labor & Delivery Ward.

Speaking of babies, we're eagerly awaiting news of Shari's baby.

And I got an e-mail from Margot titled "Resurfacing" yesterday. She's seeing her oncologist tomorrow, but is recovering like a hero.

We have so much to be grateful for!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Congratulations Brune and Richard

Last week I traveled to New York for some meetings with prospective and current investors, and I invited myself to Brune & Richard's 10th anniversary party.

Brune & Richard is a boutique law firm started by smart, thoughtful, funny, amazingly dedicated women. (So smart, in fact, that several of them are Julep early investors and supporters - but I'd truly admire them regardless).

It was inspiring to see how B&R grew its practice - from the five lawyers they were five years ago, when I first met them through my friends Theresa and Nina, to the over twenty they are today on both coasts of this country.

I wish that all young lawyers, and especially young women lawyers, could have had a peek at this celebration. They would have seen a line of glamoristas who are living engaging professional and personal lives. The four women partners have built an exciting practice while being spouses to lovely men and mothers to lovely children. And boy, can they dance.

I wish I could have seen this fifteen years ago, when I was graduating from college. But I'm inspired by seeing it today.

Monday, March 10, 2008

My 100th Post!!

So it turns out this is my 100th post. Hooray!

Yes, it might have felt like SOO much more (because of the ginormousness of the pearls of wisdom or the tediousness of the sharing of the same, depending on what side of bipolar you're on at any particular time).

I think the Washington State Liquor Control Board should give me a special license to serve champagne in the parlor in honor of this achievement. (Hint hint).

So here we are, in Week 3 of construction, deciding fairly last minute to tear away the red wall - and finding - hooray! that we have an additional 10 inches on top of the 5 that we were hoping to get. Apparently the wall was furred out. (I'm not sure if it's furred or firred, but I love the idea of a fuzzy, furry thing so I'm going to spell it furred until someone at Home Depot tells me otherwise).

Kate felt strongly that we had to do this, after simulating the width of the space between the manicure table and the reception counter. There are a lot of things in the world making us feel less than ideal in terms of the size of our waists - the walkways at Julep shouldn't be one of them.

So, we asked Kirk and Tom about it. They give us an estimate for the cost of doing this that seems to justify the square footage we'll recover, and then Tom wonders what's behind the wall. Kirk gets out his saw, cuts a hole in the wall, and finds out that there's nothing electrical and funky - it's actually just more space!

I love being able to have concrete answers to concrete problems that can be solved by Kirk's tools.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Margot's Becoming a Breast Cancer Survivor Today

Our Margot is going in for surgery today to remove the cancer that she's been fearing all her life would show up in her body.

At 1pm (and for the 5 hours afterwards!), let's all send her our best healing thoughts.

I've always admired Margot's ability to plow through any problem with her matter-of-fact get-it-done energy and razor sharp sense of humor. The magnitude of this challenge, and how she's working through it, has just underscored this admiration.

We've all given our input into the size / shape of her future "tah-tahs" (as she calls them) - Jeanne thinks they should be lit from within. To symbolize her spirit, of course.

Margot has been a faithful self-examiner, and luckily caught the signs of BC early on. Please be faithful in your self-exams and encouraging the girlfriends/moms/sisters in your life to do the same.

We're going to have a huge party for Margot at Julep to celebrate her strength and resiliency. Whether strength is a choice or not (and I think for moms with young children it often isn't!) - it's still amazing and inspiring.

All our love and best, positive energy Margot!