Works Like a Charm! Vacation

How does an entrepreneur take a vacation? Answer: One doesn’t. You can travel but your work travels with you. For us realtors there’s a saying: “If you need business, book your flights to somewhere far away.” Early spring one of the brokers at my office wrote four contracts whilst “vacationing” in Maui. Yesterday I popped into the office and my colleague on floor duty said that she just wrote an offer to help a broker that was on flight to Italy. See, it always seems to work. So, drive to Canada, cross the border and things start to happen. Works like a charm.

We had an awesome trip to Whistler with the family though. Me working a little bit here and there wasn’t an issue even though it could have been made into an issue. However, I’m blessed by a family that truly understands the double-edged sword of being an entrepreneur. Yes, I can go to Canada. Yes, I don’t have to report my vacation time to anyone as I don’t have PTO. Yes, I most likely will work a bit whilst on vacation. Yes, …

Here We Come Whistler!

Whistler is commonly associated with snow, winter and skiing. Everyone remembers the resort for the 2010 Winter Olympics, but did you know it's an equally awesome place to visit in the summer? There are miles and miles of trails for hiking, horseback riding and biking, and for those more adventurous why not switch your skis to a mountain bike and come down the slopes on a bike. I have once watched the toughest ones to patch their wounds with duct tape and then head back up for another run.

This is what our visit looked like in the summer of 2016, stay tuned for fresh pictures of Whistler Blackcomb 2018 as we are heading across the border and up the mountain tomorrow.

See you next week! Oh, and if you need to reach me, email me at

Let's Go Swimming!

Hope you enjoyed your time with family and friends celebrating July 4th. We followed our family traditions, missing our friends that usually joined us for the festivities, but this year are driving their moving truck across the continent to Michigan. Our day was filled by hiking, BBQing, gathering with our neighbors and at dusk walking down to the sports fields with our neighborhood for the fireworks.

Even though a couple of past years have been exceptions to the rule, the PNW summer tends to begin after July 4th, and this morning the sun was finally shining from blue skies and the temp hit 68 degrees way before 10 AM. Hello, summer! We missed you. Today we are packing or bags, loading the cooler with snacks and cold drinks and heading to the pool, this is what we’ve been waiting for ever since school ended.

There are a few pools in the area but the Cottage Lake Pool is the only one I've ever been to. It's clean, it's outdoors and hey, it's the YMCA. They have open …

25 Days is Not Much

And then it’s summer. Days filled with swim lessons, raindrops, lunches and brunches. Every here and there I work a bit and then return upstairs to sort Legos. It feels good to have them home. I like watching her reading a book on the couch in front of me when I do my work stuff. I equally like the boy under the side table with his iPad and the one on the bean bag upstairs. I’ve had them home for less than a week and I still like it. When there’s less than a week of summer left, I will be ready to send them to a boarding school and cannot wait for someone to take them for six and a half hours a day.
After working sixteen-hour days for months, I believe it started in mid-February, I sort of enjoy hitting late June and things slowing down a bit. I had my last closing today, slowly working on a late summer listing and then I have all those clients that are still looking. It’s not like everything came into a halt, it just slowed down a bit. A year ago, I felt super busy having one clien…

Welcome Summer!

“Hey, good to see you! We should meetup for coffee or maybe a glass of wine! Cant’s believe the kids will be out of school in just a few days… what’s you plan for the summer?” I look at the person asking, I laugh and then I answer: - We don’t really have a plan. “Oh, really… but I thought you were working?” – Umm, yes. I am working. I guess my plan is to work with my children in tow. We did it last summer and it went great. I ended up paying them for their time of hanging out at inspections, touring homes, sitting at the office at meetings and being quiet, like salary not bribery. I felt it was fair to compensate them for spending their summer with me at work aka working.
I love summer. I love the lazy mornings when I don’t have to rush three children out of the door trying to remember crazy hair days, stuffy days, pajama days, popcorn Fridays… and the list goes on. I love the 73 days of no school and not having to pack three lunches every morning. I love the beaches, the swim lesson…

Match Maker and Wedding Planner

I recently ran into a quote that caught my eye, I even posted it on my Facebook page as I found it very real in many ways. It went something like this: “A realtor is not a sales person but a match maker, and once the perfect match has been made she becomes the wedding planner.” That is so very true, there is no way anyone could or should talk someone into buying a home. No, we don’t sell homes, we travel along, offering options, narrowing it down until we walk through the door with our clients and everything stops for a moment… we don’t sell, we give room, we give room for that match to be made. Then comes the offer, the negotiations and if all goes well, there’s the “engagement” and I start planning the events leading to closing. Yes, a cool quote but during past few days, I have realized how very true it actually is.
Every now and then I see a home that I really, really like. I mean there are beautiful homes right and left but for someone that views hundreds of homes a year, most o…

Going West

I spent my Monday as a pioneer traveling with my family on the Oregon Trail. There were several families traveling together and instead of being a Liinpaa, for a day, I was a McAllister. This trip, crammed into a day, used to take months for families to travel from Missouri River to Oregon City.
Before we left on our journey, we used our last pennies to buy some supplies for the long trip; two oxen, flour, cornmeal, salt, sugar, gun powder, a rifle, a knife, a lantern and blankets to prepare for the 2,000 mile travel that would take us 4 to 6 months if we would even make it alive through the narrow passages, river crossings, drought, contaminated water and bandits. Illness would be lurking over our shoulders as cholera, typhoid fever and dysentery were common causes of death on the Oregon Trail. But we had no choice, we had to go as there was no future for us in the East. West was the land of hope, the promise of a better life.

During our travels our friends lost an ox after it got l…