Life-Changing Book: Mindset

Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck is one of those books that can change one’s life in a short read. I’m so psyched about this book that I am re-posting my Amazon review here:

The idea of the book is that people who adopt a Growth mindset – believing they can learn to do better – achieve much more than people who think they only have whatever talents they came with.
I like to learn and started the book thinking it would affirm all my growth mindset goodness. From the detailed examples, I could see areas where I really was limiting myself with a fixed mindset.
Now I’ve tried to take more of a growth approach, and am learning more. Best of all, things that were previously drudgery for me are a little easier as I see them in a new light of building skills.
Also useful in the book are tips for parents / teachers / coaches on how to set children on the growth mindset early.
Good stuff! I highly recommend reading this book!

Alcatraz

Toured Alcatraz on a summer evening. The buildings are crumbling, but the birds don’t seem to care. Gulls Of Alcatraz 1

Even though the audio tour inside the jail “wowed” me, I’d rather show you the pics I took outside. Like this lineup of gulls:
Gulls Of Alcatraz 2

Or the giant mutant succulents (and gull):

Nice views of the city and Bay Bridge, even with a little fog. And this was a SUMMER eve.
Summer Eve Oakland Bay Bridge

Of course, getting to and fro is half the fun. The ferry boat was comfy warm after the chilling ocean air. And for the trek back to the parking garage, I’d highly recommend a rickshaw:

South Tahoe Burn Hike

Spent an active afternoon hiking around Van Sickle Bi-State park in the South Lake Tahoe area. If you’re wondering what a Van Sickle is, its the generous family that donated the land for this park.

This park is unusual because its right on the border between California and Nevada — the only bi-state park in the country!

We hiked up the burn area. Some fool threw a cigarette from the Heavenly ski gondola and it burned hundreds of acres.

Fabulous views of the lake!

Eventually, the time came to declare victory and head down the mountain.

Tahoe Summer Concert Series

I can’t believe how the Doobie Brothers still rock! They sound terrific — tight and spot on!

Chicago, missing the original lead singer, unfortunately sounds more like a tribute band than their old selves. Still the original horn section is still game.

But what the heck, its 30 years since their comeback tour!

San Antonio Valley Ranch

I just like the feel of gravel under my feet.
Gravel Under My Feet
In this case, the gravel is at San Antonio Valley Ranch.

This Nature Conservancy property is on the way to becoming an ecological preserve. It is home to a herd of elk — no photos sorry. But elk! Just over the hill to the east of silicon valley!

Here is the fun and scenic route we took that day. The hybrid was so quiet, we surprised a bobcat on the road. No photos of that either. She ran the other way in an instant.

Back at the ranch, the newly planted trees are fenced to protect the new kids on the block from browsing animals.

If you appreciate the Nature Conservancy’s work, or just want to do a Good Thing, please visit my personal fund-raising page and consider a donation.

View of Google from the Weeds

On a recent hike around Shoreline, caught a view of Google HQ from the weeds:

View Of Google from the WeedsOf course the Google-plex has its share of parking lots, but maybe more interesting is the alternate transportation.  Over the hill lounge the shuttle buses, waiting to take the Googlers home.

google bus playgroundFurther down the bay are the NASA blimp hangers, in process of restoration by Google execs in exchange for parking spots for their personal jets.

blimp hangers

 

 

Horses R CurioUs

Maybe not as curious as cats, but still the horses wonder about their new house guest…
Maybe wondering if the new human is a feeder…

Plenty of grass to go around, even early in the season

Horse EatingA day off from dressage for this self-assured athlete:

What can I say about this beast that hasn’t already been said by the dog?

Horse and DogHere’s what the horse thinks of that!

In the end, I made a new friend

horse friend

C’mon Up to Castle Rock

Castle Rock Park ViewCastle Rock is a park on the edge in two respects:

  1. It sits right up at the top of Skyline and drops steeply to the southwest, giving expansive views of the redwood forest out to Monterey Bay
  2. Its on and off and on the closure list of state parks, which means you might want to check out those views while you still can.

On Feb 26, I acted as the sweep for a Sempervirens Fund hike around the Saratoga Gap and Ridge Trails.   Hike leader Scott Peden snapped excellent photos, including a panel of wildflowers.  He also got a great shot of the woodpecker we saw.

Here’s Scott pointing out all the land across the San Lorenzo watershed — half of which is scheduled for closure in July if it can’t find funding.

Scott Peden Guides Castle Rock
Along the trail…my role as caboose gives a nice vantage point.
Castle Rock Park TrailNobody can resist touching the Madrone “refrigerator trees”.  Madrone treesOld growth redwoods live in Castle Rock, too.

old growth redwoodsWhen you visit Castle Rock State Park, I just have one request:  Please pony up for parking or buy a parks pass.  Your dollars count towards keeping the parks open and maintained.

The Ponies of the Fort Worth (Live) Stock Exchange

fort_worth_live_stock_exchangeWhile in the area for the Traders Expo Dallas, I stepped off the beaten path and back in time during a visit to the Fort Worth Live Stock Exchange.  I’d arrived too late in the day to see the actual livestock but outside found some of childhood’s favorites: Coin-op ponies!
colorful_running_horse
You can clearly see their different personalities.  Look at this perky pet:
pony with personality
This guy is looking a little stressed out:
stressed pony
And check out this serious worker pulling the cart. He’s a far cry from the comical cow in the background. As a kid I wouldn’t have been caught dead riding that cow.
serious_pony_with_silly_cow
THIS is my idea of a serious steed:
best_steed for coin-op pony
Here’s why: a real stirrup.
stirrup on coin-op pony Giddy-up!