ArchiTalks #9: My Three Favorite Words

Welcome to ArchiTalks #9: My Three Favorite Words. I haven’t participated in too many ArchiTalks, but it is what inspired me to start this blog. So I owe many thanks to those who participate regularly, and also many thanks for including me in the group. The ArchiTalks Series is when Bob Borson over at Life of an Architect throws out a topic, and a whole bunch of architectural bloggers write on the topic. You’ll find links to all their posts at the bottom of this post. The topic is always open to interpretation – within reason of course. I asked if we could use two words (which would have been ‘Dream Big’ for me), but Bob made it clear that he believed in my creative ability (thanks Bob) to come up with three words. Then the challenge became – is this a three-word phrase? Or three. individual. words.

When I began thinking about this topic, I obviously jumped to a phrase. As a mom, one might quickly conclude that my three favorite words are ‘I love you’ as uttered by my adoring children (you’d be right about the phrase, though my children can’t always be described as ‘adoring’). But there are a lot of phrases that I love as a mother AND and architect. Before I get to the one I chose though, I simply have to share the three-word phrases I hear most often around my house:


‘Everything is Awesome’ (Everything is cool when you’re part of a team). Go ahead. Sing it. I know you want to.

Now that I’ve planted that earworm, I’ll move on to the second most uttered phrase in our house:


‘Let it Go’ (Let it go, can’t hold it back anymore). I know you want to… go ahead and sing this one out loud. Ironically, this phrase is most often sung (yes, sung) by my husband – who is all too often reminding our children that they need to stop fighting, and… ‘don’t make me sing it kids… don’t make me! Okay, here we go… Let it go, let it go…’ (typically accompanied with dance moves and heartfelt expressions – he really doesn’t hold back). Thankfully the threat of dad singing ‘Let It Go’ will often halt, or at least delay, some squabbles.

Now that I’ve got you singing, onto the phrase I chose:


The phrase carries a bit of optimism that I find comforting in both my roles as a mother and an architect. I love saying it as much as I love hearing it, and I wish both happened more often. When I say ‘I will try’ at work, it means I’m going to do my best, and I’ll likely look back and have no regrets that I didn’t at least give it a go, whatever ‘it’ may be. As an architect, saying ‘I will try’ keeps the door of communication open, and it keeps things positive. Positivity is good. Optimism is good. Trying is good.

As a mom, I really want to hear ‘I will try’ from my kids. I think I would be over-the-moon happy if my son would utter these words at the dinner table. He is an incredibly picky eater, and I really just wish he would try. No matter how much we push, the kid just won’t try new foods. My daughter is 3 years old, and a feisty little gal. She’s independent and really likes to have things her way. When things don’t go her way… say, at bedtime… she often informs us that she ‘doesn’t know how to close her eyes and go to sleep’, or ‘doesn’t know how to put on her pajamas’, despite having changed her clothes no less than three times earlier in the day. We urge her to just try. And good golly, I wish she would be willing to just try. But she has also informed us that she in in charge at our house – even in charge of the adults (that is nearly an exact quote). And so we will keep trying, and encouraging them, to just try. Keep trying. Never give up.

Had I chosen to do the three. individual. words. I would have chosen 1) Passion – it is the word most often used to describe me; 2) Compassion – it is the characteristic I think is most critical to me as a mother, an architect and hopefully one day a good leader; and 3) Determination – it is what one needs to survive as a parent and an architect.

So what are your favorite three words? Check out the three words from these great bloggers who also participated in this fantastic ArchiTalk topic:

Enoch Sears – Business of Architecture
3 Words To Get Started

Bob Borson – Life of An Architect
3 Words: Are. Blogs. Important.

Matthew Stanfield – FiELD9: architecture
3 Words

Marica McKeel – Studio MM
Never Give Up

Jeff Echols – Architect Of The Internet
What’s Your Story – My Three (or Four) Favorite Words

Lee Calisti, AIA – Think Architect
i make art

Lora Teagarden – L² Design, LLC
#ArchiTalks: I love it!

Andrew Hawkins, AIA – Hawkins Architecture, Inc.
Three Favorite Architectural Words

Jes Stafford – Modus Operandi Design
I Am Listening

Cindy Black – Rick & Cindy Black Architects
Spirit of Optimism (my three favorite words)

Michele Grace Hottel – Michele Grace Hottel, Architect
architalk#9: my three favorite words

Meghana Joshi – IRA Consultants, LLC
My Three Favorite Words

Michael Riscica – Young Architect
How’s it going… Finishing The Architect Exam?!??

My Three Favorite Words

Brian Paletz – The Emerging Architect
I am in

Eric Wittman – intern[life]
my three favorite [hardest] words

Jonathan Brown – Proto-Architecture
The Big Idea

Jeremiah Russell, AIA – ROGUE Architecture
three little words: #architalks


  1. Lora

    June 8, 2015

    Love all of your 3 word choices. And now I will go singing Frozen songs for the rest of the day….

  2. Lee

    June 5, 2015

    I enjoyed how personal this was and the glimpse into your life. Agreeing to try something shows that someone is not avoiding something or someone by judging it ahead of time. Only after trying a new food, an architectural concept or a friendship, can good things happen.

    • archimom author

      June 5, 2015

      Thanks Lee! I’ve been finding lately that I really need to take my own advice- and sometimes its harder than others… but you’re right- good things happen when we give it a go!! Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Bob

    June 5, 2015

    Anybody who has kids can appreciate these ear worms you’ve all just infected us with –

    I really like your actual 3 words – Passion, Compassion and Determination. I think it would be difficult to pick almost any other words that describe individual traits that are more selfless. Very well done.

    • archimom author

      June 5, 2015

      You are too kind *blushing* I was just excited to finally be able to use the word ‘earworm’ on my blog- haha! Thanks for the great topic Bob!

  4. matthew

    June 5, 2015

    Great choice of words. Both the phrase and the individual words. I have been learning to use “I will try” with clients as a means to help me with problem of over promising. I think it helps keep the expectations reasonable when the request may not be so much.

    • archimom author

      June 5, 2015

      I think managing expectations is one of the hardest things to do (as an architect, AND a parent!). But somehow having the willingness to at least try seems to keep things positive!

  5. Meghana

    June 4, 2015

    Let it go! Let it go! Oh, it’s just another Disney song, but I have sung it to.. to inspire myself to “let it go” 🙂

    • archimom author

      June 5, 2015

      I have blared that song at top volume to help remind me to let it go. Even though its a kid’s song, its still carries a pretty great message:)

  6. Enoch

    June 4, 2015

    Haha! If I had a dollar for everytime I heard those songs sung around my house!!! Everything IS awesome. Great play on 3 words Amy…

    • archimom author

      June 5, 2015

      Thanks Enoch- and thanks for swinging by my blog!

Share Your Thoughts