April Wine Friday: $15 Challenge with Home made Pizza

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Well you did it again!  The outstanding support from all
our clients, friends, and partners continues to amaze and touch us
deeply.  Of course we owe a special thanks to Chef Gil and Chef Candy for making
over 20 custom gourmet pizzas with everything from anchovies to spinach!
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As for the wine challenge, well I have to give credit
where credit is due — leave it up to the 2 French guys to bring the
first and second place wines.  With 8 votes, the 2007 Ancien Pinot Noir
and with 7 votes the 2006 CanBlau Mazuelo-Syrah-Granache blend from
Spain dominated a field of 18 wines.  Surprising enough, my own entry
of a 91 point Shiraz from Australia had only 2 votes — wonder what
that says about me?!  We hope everyone had as much fun as we did and we
look forward to seeing you again next month.

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Here is the wine lineup (from left to right) and results:

2005 Viano Vineyards Zinfandel – 1 vote
2006 Jim Barry Lodge Hill Shiraz – 2 votes
2004 Castelmavre Corbieres – no votes
2006 CanBlau Red Blend – 7 votes
2004 Rodney Strong Merlot – 7 votes
2005 Roudon Smith Claret – 3 votes
2005 Tintara Granache – no votes
2006 Da Vinci Chianti – 4 votes
2007 Dona Paula Malbec – 1 vote
2005 Edna Valley Merlot – 2 votes
2006 Rare Earth Cabernet Sauvignon – 3 votes
2003 Santa De Maria Cabernet Sauvignon – 3 votes
2008 Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc – 2 votes
2007 Ancien Pinot Noir – 8 votes
2006 Chateau Ste. Michelle Chardonnay – 4 votes
2007 Mirassou Pinot Noir – no votes
2006 Mirassou Cabernet Sauvignon – 4 votes
2005 Dancing Bull Chardonnay – 1 vote

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-Mark

Week 2: Questions about where I am and where I am going

I’ve been through this exercise many times in
seminars.  Before we can go anywhere, we need to take stock of where we
are, who we are, how we got here, and where we want to go.  From there,
we can begin to develop a map of the course it takes to get where we
want to go. 

The first question is — Where am I now?
o I am in the early stages of putting together a stable self-run business.
o I am having an incredible experience in personal growth, building
close personal and business relationships, and for the first time in my
life actually having a direction and goal where I can see the results
of my labor.
o I am confident and committed to our success, and to building a better life/future together.
o I am happily married, but there are clear signs of stress in our relationship due to 2 years of life-work imbalance.
o I am committed to helping my wife find the inspired work she seeks
that shows her talents and that drives her commitment and happiness.

Second — How did I get here?
o I worked for 15+ years in high-tech through multiple positions and
disciplines that increased over time and provided an incredible career
and lifestyle.
o I ascended quickly to a plateau of position and responsibility, eventually growing more disappointed.
o I was unhappy and dissatisfied with my corporate career trajectory and distasteful business practices.
o I found the opportunity to grow myself into my own business and partner with my wife.
o I started working part-time in real estate while learning the
business and establishing what our own small business would look and
feel like.
o I have spent 2 years building an incredible foundation, brand, core values, and sphere of supporters.

Third — What do I love?
o Working to build things — houses, cars, business, relationships
o Designing something complex
o Solving a problem nobody else has been able to solve
o Inspiring people to believe in themselves, to see an incredible future
o Modern architecture, furniture, fine clothes, art

Finally — How do I incorporate these passions into my daily life?
o Identify an investment group to buy, remodel, and flip houses I find
o Have Sabrina and I move into a new project home every few years, start over, remodel, …
o Start working with small builders on their projects
o Find a charity organization working on distressed homes
o Pursue my pre-fab housing interest and find a way to work as part of their business team

I guess that puts it out there for all to see.

-mark

Week 1: One Year To An Organized Work Life

Manage-your-time-organize-your-life The work begins for the first week of
organizing my work life.  I notice that each month will start with a
couple of new habits that I will need to incorporate into my life. 

This month, we start with 1) Making my bed every
day.  Psychologically this allows us to bring the day to a beginning
(when we get out of bed) and an end (when we roll back the covers to
get into bed and go to sleep).

And 2, each day we need to carve off 5 minutes to get
away from the desk (or workplace) and go for a walk, take the stairs,
etc.  This is designed to snap our mind away from whatever we are so
intensely focused on and give us the chance to recharge our mental
batteries for a few minutes.  It has the added benefit of being a
healthy activity!  For me, my schedule is so random with client
meetings, running around viewing properties, and talking on the phone
to all the folks it takes to pull a transaction together that I don’t
think I will have the chance to fix a time for this.  I’ll have to see
how it goes.

I’ve been told that it takes 30 days of repeating
this same activity for it to become a habit / routine.  I’m sure
Sabrina will be happy if I just make the bed 30 days in a row —
becoming a habit, that’s just too much for her to think about!

-mark

Getting Organized

Reginaleeds Once in a while, Sabrina and I have our “date night”
at the nearest bookstore.  We treat it like a chance to walk around and
discover something new, then we sit down at the coffee shop and talk
about what we found.  This time, an interesting title caught my eye so
I began reading a few chapters — One Year To An Organized Work Life by
Regina Leeds.

As our business grows, I’ve been struggling to stay
as organized as I want.  I’ve come to believe that personal and
business organization is a key component to succeeding at the highest
levels.  The reason I liked this book so much is that it takes a
step-by-step weekly approach so that I can systematize things into
habits.  It is kind of like giving out assignments instead of saying go
do it this way.

So, this weekend I began a new journey that is
expected to last ONE full year as I have committed to the process of One
Year To An Organized Work Life.  As I enter this “get organized”
journey, my expectation is how this is more of a “habits and routines”
issue for me than some kind of cleanliness problem.  I know where
everything is and I can put my fingers on anything I need very quickly,
but, I need a better system for handling the massive amount of email,
statics, clients, contracts, disclosures, reports, etc that it takes to
run a thriving real estate enterprise. 

I have great expectations for
this book and it’s results! And I will keep you posted.

-mark

SOLD: 61 Selby Lane, Atherton 94027

61 Selby Lane, Atherton — $3,200,000.  Listed 4/1/2009 (Bonnie Biorn of Alain Pinel Realtors represents the Seller) SOLD: $2.35M (9/22/2009)

– 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms
– 3260 livings space on a 43,575sf lot

Mark's Preview Notes: At first, Jerry had a hunch that this may be a
one-off custom Eichler.  After a deeper look, it is less likely to be
an Eichler-built home.  Nonetheless this is a jewel of a mid-century
modern home in the Bay Area.  The wood paneling seems original, as do
the floor to ceiling windows and massive painted-brick fireplace.  The
angular lines and radiant heating are quintessential mid-century
elements that Eichler Enthusiasts appreciate, and just picture what
this would look like with a period George Nelson Saucer Lamp hanging
over the dining table!  Clearly this home is awaiting a makeover for
the 21st century — updating the bathrooms, kitchen, and landscaping —
but what a fun project this would be!  I hope we will get a chance to
see what the new owners have in mind.

MLS Photos:

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