Not all frequently-asked questions at Cascadia Eye are about our practice or about eyes. You’d be surprised how many times we get questions about the doctors themselves, especially regarding their hobbies and passions outside of work, how their families are doing, and other personal details like that. We welcome those kinds of questions! It’s part of feeling like a family. So every once in a while I will blog about one of our doctors, to give you a window into their interests and lives.
When people ask about Dr. Crowell, or ask her questions about herself, diet and nutrition is a subject that frequently comes up. Established patients might wonder if she is still doing her vegetarian cooking schools, or new patients might hear she has a degree in dietetics and ask for advice.
It’s true that Dr. Crowell’s undergraduate degree was in dietetics before she went to medical school, and she keeps up on the latest studies and science of nutrition. It has been one of her passions for a long time. She used to co-teach annual classes on low-fat vegetarian cooking, combining the latest health information with gourmet vegetarian recipes. Although she doesn’t do the cooking school anymore, she will always be happy to give you nutritional advice if you ask.
These days, she has expanded her passion to include the study of longevity and anti-aging. Every year she and her husband, Dr. Rodney Brandt, attend a conference in Las Vegas on this subject, always returning armed with the latest studies and information on living a long and healthy life.
Connected to this passion for anti-aging is her favorite Alzheimer’s prevention activity: Scottish Country Dancing. Dr. Crowell will be happy to tell you that the best activities to prevent memory loss involve social interaction, physical activity, and something that engages your mind. Scottish Country Dancing – a social dance style that dates back to the 1700’s – does all three! With the added bonus of great Scottish music (a favorite of Dr. Crowell’s) and an excuse to wear a ballgown to various RSCDS (Royal Scottish Country Dancing Society) balls, it’s no wonder she loves it.
She and her husband both have artistic sides that can be found in all three of our offices. Dr. Crowell loves painting watercolors and Dr. Brandt takes photographs, often of beautiful locations they have visited together (traveling is another hobby they share.) Look for their artwork on Cascadia Eye’s walls!
Patients often ask our employees – and Dr. Crowell herself – about her family. Especially for long-time patients, who remember Cascadia Eye’s early days with babies greeting them at the front desk, it’s a chance to catch up on how the “office babies” are doing now. (Although I will admit, as one of those very same “office babies” it feels a little strange to be talking about myself and my sisters. But it is a frequently-asked question, and I promised I would answer those!)
Dr. Crowell has lived in the same house in Burlington since 1986. She’s been happily married to Rodney Brandt for over 30 years, and they enjoy a close relationship with all three of their adult daughters. Dr. Crowell’s oldest daughter, Alex (yes, that would be me!) works for Cascadia Eye as a copywriter, blogger, graphic designer, and social media marketer – while the son-in-law, Erik, checks in patients at the Eye Associates Surgery Center. Dr. Crowell’s middle daughter, Ariane, lives with her husband and two cats in San Diego and works in IT for a company that designs medical software, devoting her free time to sewing projects and concerts, among other things. The youngest daughter, Alyssa, lives in Seattle where she is taking pre-med classes and making plans for a future in neuroscience, while also writing a science column for Seattle University’s paper and doing freelance photography and design on the side.
The whole family enjoys each other’s company immensely, looking for any excuse to get together (although it is hard when one person is so far away!) and especially enjoying traveling together, among other shared hobbies and interests.
Dr. Crowell has granted permission to include the most recent family picture here, where everyone dressed up according to their interests/passions for that year (or to otherwise represent their true selves in a very creative manner!) Curious? Just ask her about it next time you see her, or you can ask me on our social media sites, listed below.
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If you would like more information about our doctors, or if you would like to schedule a comprehensive eye exam at Cascadia Eye, please contact us today.
In addition, join us on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+ to ask your questions about eyes, exams, and our practice. We’d love to hear from you – and I might write a blog to address your questions in the future.