12 in 12 Books – The Ciccarellis | Seattle Reading Challenge

Post by Marissa

Why wait until the new year to start a resolution? I’ve decided to challenge myself to a 12 in 12, meaning I will read 12 books in 12 months. Now, I’m actually a very avid reader and that is not really a challenge for me, but the tricky part will be that Erik picked out the books and they are not my usual fiction “just for fun”, feel-good books (which I admittedly will still be reading).  They are all business related & non-fiction.

Here’s what happened. One night in September I told Erik I needed one of his “boring textbooks” (which is how I referred to his business books) because I was having a hard time sleeping and wanted to read something that could put me out in about 2 pages. He handed me a book called You, Inc. and I thought, “great! Off to sleep I go!” In reality what happened was I instantly liked the book and wanted to read several chapters before I was tired enough for sleep! Yes, the opposite of what I intended happened, but I was instantly apologetic to Erik and thrilled that I liked the book! I thought about all the times Erik had told me to read something he was reading and how I was concerned it wasn’t my usual go-to book. After finishing the You Inc. last weekend I told Erik that I was going to challenge myself to read at least 12 of the books he was always raving about. Each month I will start a new one and write a quick post about it here!

Here’s the list: (starting from September with the top book pictured below and already finished!)

You, Inc. by Harry Beckwith and Christine K. Clifford

The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss

Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman

The E Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber

The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing by Al Ries & Jack Trout

Rework by Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson

The Success Principles by Jack Canfield

Strengths Finder 2.0 by Tom Rath

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey

The Compassionate Samurai by Brian Klemmer

Awaken the Giant Within by Anthony Robbins

The Nordstrom Way to Customer Service Excellence by Robert Spector and Patrick McCarthy


Julie Marks - Strengths Finder 2.0 is more of a quiz… but still very interesting as it starts to dissect you and creates a learning plan.

Then go back and take it again in 6 months to see if/how you changed



cicc1186 - Great! Cannot wait to read it and then reread 6 months later! Thanks Jewels!

Skylar Houk - RAD!… Way of the Peaceful Warrior is a swan dive into the sparkling, sunset-lit ocean of eternity (and one of my favorites of all time!). It will wink at you with the eye of the cosmos!

cicc1186 - Thanks Sky! I’m super excited, already loving the first 2 books and can’t wait to get to Peaceful Warrior! I’ll loan you some of these if you haven’t already read them, just let me know!

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Stuck on a Floating Bridge – SR 520 | Seattle/Bellevue

While making the drive across the SR 520 bridge from Seattle to Bellevue we saw a sign that read “bridge closed for 30 minutes”. Yowzerz, no fun. Apparently everyone else on the bridge was accustomed to this situation. People started getting out of their cars. Being the risk takers we are, we decided to get out and enjoy the last day of September. The weather was beautiful and Mt. Rainer was towering in the background. In a span of two minutes there were at least 60 people walking between cars enjoying the sunshine. So, being photographers, the first thing we decided to do was snap some photos of our bridge experience. I figured, when would there ever be another time that I could lay on a highway and take a photo. That’s of course every boy’s dream….

Posted by Erik

Marissa trying to contact our Bellevue client to let them know we’re stuck.

I guess we couldn’t complain about the view…

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Dahlias – Volunteer Park | Seattle

Sometimes the most unexpected things are the best. Marissa and I had some free time in the city and got caught wandering around Volunteer Park. There really isn’t a feeling that compares to being in the midst of nature with coconut ice-cream from Graters while sitting on the couch watching a movie…woops, a little off track. Daydreaming about ice cream again:)

Seriously though, we really enjoyed ourselves at the park while watching ultimate frisbee and making our way through the green houses with an unbelievable collection of cacti. Right before we were about to leave we stumbled upon an absolutely majestic collection of Dahlias. We could not stop taking photos. We had duel cameras firing away. iPhones galore snapping photos of these amazing looking flowers that seemed to be individually hand crafted just for this day. Enjoy this collection of randomly stumbled upon Dahlias in Volunteer Park.

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Video Light – An Education | Seattle

We love educating ourselves in every way possible, but recently we’ve been looking into different light sources for poorly lit spaces, such as receptions. We purchased a cheap video light from Amazon and wanted to test it out. Luckily our friends Julianna & Nathan had a wedding that they let us come to for our video light test! Here’s what we found…it definitely adds more light, but isn’t strong enough to overpower a very bright background with a dark subject. With a dark background however, it works great! We love the additional light and how natural it looks, without looking like a flash or that we even added anything at all! We definitely recommend a small video light for details shots such as the ones below. We used it above each subject at a 45 degree angle, tilted down…hopefully that makes sense!

Here it is! Small, but efficient!

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Fun Day – Pike’s Place Market | Seattle

We are strong believers in fun day. We really think that everyone should have at least one fun day a week. This doesn’t even need to cost money, but it’s a way to do something that you love or something new, whichever you are in the mood for that particular fun day. One of our latest fun days found us at the Pike’s Place Market. We’d been there before, sure, but does watching flying fish ever get old??? We could hang out there watching these guys for awhile, but also just love walking around smelling the good food smells and people watching. Hmmm, what should we do next fun day?

And he caught it! Paws and all…

Awkward close-up shots of us because we were literally packed in like sardines, pun intended, but still wanted proof we were there!

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