Simple and Low Key Happy Birthday to me.

Milestone birthdays are supposed to be remembered and cherished. On my 16th birthday I drove to the mall by myself. On my 21st birthday… no idea. Probably at some bar watching a band. On my 30th and 40th birthdays… I do not recall anything special or memorable. Birthdays simply have never been a big deal for me.

When I was growing up my family would have a nice dinner, a cake, my grandma would come over, and I’d have a card and a present or two. It was always a pretty low key affair. I don’t recall once ever having a birthday party with a bunch of friends at the house.

Today, however, is a milestone. I want to remember it. I want to cherish it. Yes, I turn 50 today. I don’t feel 50. I guess I feel younger, but I’m wise enough to know I’m most certainly not younger nor am I getting any younger.

I woke up to Happy 50th Birthday decorations that my wife and step-daughter hung up around the house. It was a pleasant surprise and one I really appreciated. Tonight we meet my parents for a birthday dinner at an Italian restaurant. I’m looking forward to getting together and enjoying the evening.

Simple and low key.

Look at Your Life, Look at Your Choices

Where is my mind?

My wife and I had a long discussion about technology and not being in the moment. I was asked how long can I go without my internet connected phone or computer? Am I addicted to social media, constant updates, and instant validation? Where is my mind?

It made me question if technology has made us more selfish, self-absorbed and anti-social? Are we less aware of the world around us? Have we lost true intimacy with others?

Her observations on my behaviors shined a light on how I’ve been for the last several weeks. Which is to say, not in the moment and definitely in my own little world.

Continue reading “Look at Your Life, Look at Your Choices”

Everyday I choose her

Today is my second wedding anniversary. I talked at length about my first year of being married a year or so ago.

[perfectpullquote align=”full” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]If there’s anything I learned being married is that I have to choose her everyday. I choose to focus on the gifts she brings into my life. Her smile, her sense of humor, her patience, her sensuality, her silliness, her comfort, her empathy, her friendship, and, of course, her unconditional love. I may not actively say to myself “I choose you” like I’m playing Pokemon or something, but I do choose her with my actions every day. Some days are truly better than others, but every day I choose her. I just do for all the reasons above and more. Only her.[/perfectpullquote]

Marriage is work, but it’s the absolute best and I’m incredibly lucky to have her in my life.

Take a moment to remind your significant other (husband, wife, family member, dog, etc) how much they mean to you and why you chose them.

Reset

As Thanksgiving has come and gone and I’ve eaten way too much turkey and mashed potatoes, its good to reflect on the year passed and look to the future. I’m thankful for my family and friends, for the ability to have fun and be creative, and for you dear reader.

In just a few weeks it will be Christmas, then New Year’s Eve, and ultimately 2017. It still looks futuristic to me to write 2017. Like, I should be living in the far future in the year twenty-seventeeeeennnnn!

Of course, it’s just a number. Another year. A jumping on or off point on a million different things like exercising more, stop watching bad TV, or connecting with you kids.

I’ve already outlined a few ideas for myself here. Of course, that’s just a start. Both Margaret Abrams and Ryan Holiday advocate a digital reset in 2017.

I’m going to do a little of both ideas. What about you?

A Subtle Art

A new perspective, a self-help book, and a road map for the future.

My anxiety is high. My blood pressure is elevated. My fear of the unknown is ramped up to 11. My self-induced stress level is through the roof. Politics, sports, and pop culture oftentimes tear me apart and I have trouble finding silver linings.

I recognize these less than stellar qualities in myself and, now with my attention as of late focused on current events, they bubble and froth. However, it’s really not just about the election, baseball trades, or basketball recruiting. My belief is there’s something more going on. It’s a general malaise floating around me like the cloud of dirt around Pig-Pen of the Peanuts gang.

Continue reading “A Subtle Art”