Happy Anniversary and Merry Holidays

Hey! Welcome back. I know it’s been a while. I’ve been pretty busy. How about you?

The wife and I took a train up to New York on Nov 20th to celebrate our 25th anniversary. Lots of walking, shopping, eating, and we saw Hadestown. The first live broadway show we’d seen in a couple years. It was a very nice weekend away. And taking the train from DC to NYC is the way to go!

Then we had planned to drive down to my dad’s house in South Carolina for Thanksgiving. But a very dear friend of ours (my wife’s best friend since middle school) was going into hospice care, so we dropped those plans and flew to Oregon instead to see her and say our goodbyes. Honestly one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in my almost half-century of life, but I’m thankful we had the opportunity before she passed just two days later. I’m still processing it and still feel pretty down. I can’t even imagine what my wife is going through having lost her mother earlier this year and now her closest friend.

I’m just going to say it. 2021 sucks.

I know I’ve mentioned that I was taking a database class for grad school. It was a tough class. A lot of work. They took a 16 week class and squished it into an 8 week format, so I had to do two weeks worth of homework, assignments, and quizzes in one week. Plus work. Plus sucky life trauma. Plus holidays. Plus other commitments. Somehow though, I managed to get a B+ in the class! Crazy.

I did release myself of one of my “other commitments” though. I chose not to run for re-election on our HOA board. I served nine years on the board. It’s a pretty good community though. Not a ton of resident engagement, but the folks who do volunteer give a lot of themselves. And while we do have some ridiculous rules, it’s not to the level of horror stories I’ve heard from some HOAs. So I didn’t mind. But it is nice to not even have to think about that stuff anymore.

As I write this, I’m sitting in my brother-in-law’s house in Colorado for the holidays. So the last couple weeks have at least started to redeem the year. Or maybe it will be a hint of what 2022 will be like … *knock on wood* It’s been a nice visit with the family. I got to watch my nephew and nieces tear through their Christmas gifts. And we’ll be here to ring in the new year with them as well.

Your travel budget.
Source: https://www.sadanduseless.com/life-is-pain

Planning for 2022

As I mentioned before, I’ve been using an actual planner instead of just a notebook like I’ve done in the past. So far it’s been very nice to see my meetings laid out for the week. This Jibun Techo system is pretty cool too; reminds me of a Traveler’s Notebook system in which you can customize what inserts you have. But in this case, the inserts are pretty limited. I replaced the LIFE booklet with another IDEA booklet. So I have sandwiched together IDEA-DIARY-IDEA. The first IDEA book is my daily notes and tasks for work. The DIARY is the standard planner book for monthly and weekly scheduling. The last IDEA book I’m using as a personal journal. I’m one month in and digging it so far.

Being the last month of the year, now is when I typically fill out my YearCompass. But it’s also a very busy month, so I’m going to have to find some time to sit by myself and just reflect on 2021 and plan for 2022. I started the YearCompass a few years ago and love it. I’m not good at reflecting on things usually, even though I *want* to … I just never make time to do it. The YearCompass has become a habit that forces me to at least look at the whole year and what I want to do differently next year. I highly recommend it for everybody. It has less to do with “planning” and more to do with learning about yourself.

It is you.
Source: https://www.sadanduseless.com/life-is-pain

Stoic Tip(s) of the Week

Project 365 to Project 52

For several years now I’ve done a “Project 365” in which I’ve taken a photo (or several) every day. Every day. That’s a lot. I tried to stop a couple years ago and it ended up being such a habit that it felt strange not taking and posting a photo every day.

But I’m kind of over it. I don’t do a lot EVERY day. And sometimes I don’t feel like posting. So I’ve been trying to think how I can still do something regularly to chronicle my year without boxing myself into something every single day.

I think I’m going to try a “Project 52” this year and post a blog with picture(s) every week. It will probably be something along the lines of my recent blog posts … which are all over the place. But the focus would be more about what I did. I’m going to try using the “story post” option in WordPress and host them here on my site. My first test of this type of post sort of worked. Some of the photos didn’t upload properly, so clearly some more testing will need to happen. But I like the format, so we’ll see how it goes. Stay tuned (if you care)!

Song of the Week

This song popped up in my random and I haven’t heard it in a couple years. The Clarks singing “Born Too Late” (I could only find a live version, no music videos).

Jimi show me how you play that thing
Elvis will I ever be a king?
Jerry all the joy and love you bring

Keep Learning

I typically eat my lunch sitting at my desk. I know I should get out of the office. But most of the time I don’t want to lose flow or the weather is bad or whatever other excuse you need to hear from me. However, I do try to eat and catch up on YouTube rather than grinding away at more work at least. Here are a few videos I watched recently that were interesting and though-provoking:

Bonus Song of the Week

This new video for George Harrison’s “My Sweet Lord” recently dropped and it’s too good not to share (even if I already have a song).

This post has been day 45 of #100DaysToOffload