Thursday, March 31, 2016


We arrived in Phoenix this afternoon for a long weekend getaway.  We met up with my high school friend, Karen Megivern, and had a wonderful time sharing wine and stories. It's such a thrill when you can pick up from where we were. Where we left off was 2012 and a high school class reunion. Where we are now is a husband for her and a grandchild for me. I told her I would always keep in touch… And I meant it. These friendships are the icing on a nice life. I wish I could share a picture with you but we were so busy catching up that we forgot to capture the moment. Cheers to old friends.

Friday, March 25, 2016

Priorities? I don't have time for those!

If you haven't seen a variation on this wonderful theme of managing your time and setting your priorities, this is my Friday treat for you - this animation.

Hopefully the animation isn't a waste of your time.

Hopefully you have, or are thinking about, setting priorities for the big stuff in your life, the rocks, and not letting yourself get too distracted - or stressed - by the little things. 

What are your rocks? 

Your rocks, whatever you've identified, are your priorities.  An instructor who talked about this in a leadership class hinted that, on first blush our priorities are money, success, promotion, family, the feeling of success.

Then, the instructor told us to imagine a 1,000 foot steel I-Beam laying on the ground.  If you were offered $1 million to walk across it, would you?  Of course, everybody agreed they would!  Easy peasy.

Yep, we'd all walk for money :)

Then, we were to imagine the beam spanning across the roofs of some very high towers and we were asked again if we would walk across the beam.  Of course, we all said no.  We demonstrated that we value our safety more than money.

But then, the instructor postured, what if you were a parent of a young child, and that young child was at the other end of the beam, walking towards you, what would you do?  Parents in the group were demonstrative about their decision to rush towards their child.

So...what are your priorities?  Your rocks?

Maybe, just maybe, they are family, safety, and THEN money.

Monday, March 21, 2016

God bless JSS

Happy birthday to my sweet grandson!  Jacob Steil Special, it's your first birthday and I hope you know how much Gramps & Grammy love you.  Your birth changed me.  It made me a grandmother, of course, but it also reinvented me.  I didn't know I could love you as much as I do.  My heart aches when I know it's going to be awhile until I see you, and I can only go 3-4 weeks (max!) between visits.  You are so handsome, and your giggle is so cute. It has been an honor to be a small part of your first year on beautiful Earth.  You have brought us so much joy.  Your little personality is really sweet and I think you are a perfect combination of your devoted, caring parents.  You have a leg up with those parents, and the life that is yours, young man, and I hope you always use that to your advantage.  I'll be watching, and reminding you.  Anyway, you make my heart light and you make all my worries float away.  Happy brithday, sweetie pie.  Here are a few of my favorite pictures, taken by me, over the past year.  Bye bye.  Grammy loves you.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Getting Your Fun On

One of the fun-damental tenets of marriage is that you have a companion with whom you enjoy life's varied experiences.  The fun you collect from hanging out can be big or small, and doesn't always have to be sunset watching on a patch of warm sand with a cold beverage. 

We do this quite naturally, during the dating phase:  bowling, skating, bird-watching, whatever.

Somewhere down the line, once the ink is dried, some couples forget that one of the big reasons they decided to marry is that life is sweeter together, a discovery they make because of sharing mutually enjoyable activities.  Ramping up our recreational time together can jumpstart everything.

Dr. Harley has a useful tool - the REI (Recreational Enjoyment Inventory):

Print out two copies of that inventory, answer individually, and then compare answers.

You might just make some connections (it's official, we both love movies and dining out), and some discoveries (we'll apparently be playing volleyball more often than we have in the 20+ years we've been together).