It’s funny how kids can permeate our lives. Many co-workers have become parents over the last few years, and our hallway chats have evolved from what we did last night to the cute thing that our kids did last night. That’s in part because as parents we no longer do much at all on weeknights, and thus can’t report on the hip bar/new restaurant/latest movie that we didn’t check out, but mostly because we’re just so enamored with our offspring.

Business conversations used to be, well, all business. But now when I talk with writers, for example, about upcoming magazine articles, at least part of the discussion involves what little Lola’s up to, how baby Seth is doing, what grade Cullen and Graham are in now.

This issue reflects a bit of that, too. In our cover feature, Celebrated Weekend, Tim Robbins’ tour of Seattle is packed with family-friendly places. In fact, his favorite memory of the city involves not a fabulous seafood restaurant, a classic cup of coffee, or even one of his many music haunts, but a day spent discovering the city with his son.

Readers can often count on a kid fix from Jim Shahin, whose son, Sam, has long been a fixture in his column. This issue, Jim writes about settling into a new house, yet Sam makes a sentimental appearance nonetheless.

I hadn’t realized just what a softy I’d become until last month, when I was in Vail at the American Airlines Celebrity Ski Weekend benefiting cystic fibrosis. The event is a terrific way to contribute to a worthy cause, enjoy fabulous spring skiing, and schmooze with dozens of celebrities. American Way entertained several clients there, and I mostly viewed the weekend as a fun business opportunity at a charitable event.

That is, until the evening presentations. Three girls with the disease took the stage to educate us about CF and explain how they strive to lead normal lives, despite the immense challenges. Though their speeches were incredibly inspirational, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house; seeing these children so full of life, yet suffering at the same time, was just too much.

That’s why I’m proud of American’s long-standing commitment to finding a cure for cystic fibrosis. In the 17 years that AA has sponsored Celebrity Ski Weekend, the event has raised more than $19 million. In that time, the average life span of someone with CF has extended from 18 to 32. This just proves that everyone can make a difference. For more information on CF, visit www.cff.org; for details on next year’s Celebrity Ski Weekend, go to www.aaevents.com. While there, you can also find details on a similarly fantastic Celebrity Golf event held every October, benefiting The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.

ELAINE SRNKA
Editor