What do you really want for Christmas? I was asked that a few times over the past couple weeks. You know something I really don’t think there is anything that I really need. I think the sometimes we get caught up in the getting during the holidays rather than the giving. If I am asked again what I want for Christmas I think my answer will be for you to volunteer a few hours somewhere, it doesn’t matter where just volunteer your time helping someone else out. This way we can pass on what skills we may have, or give someone a break when they need it. The gift of time, it is funny that we really don’t know how much time we have so to me it is one of the most precious of gifts.
Friday, December 19, 2014
Thursday, December 18, 2014
I was reminded yesterday that life is short. I think that all too often we take people for granted and just assume that they will be around as long as you need them. If you have experienced loss, you know that this is not the case, we lose friends and loved ones far too fast. I was saddened when I found out my neighbor for the past 19 years Mike Michael E Hansen Artie had passed, it opened my eyes as we have kids the exact same age, we live in the same neighborhood, we are close in age and we talked when we ran into each other at different events, around the neighborhood, and at school, and lended a helping hand when needed. I couldn’t imagine what his family is going through, the kids, Michelle Cooper-Hansen, Mike’s extended family. He was far too young to die. This unfortunate death makes you think, that we need to embrace those around us and really let them know how we feel. It also reminds me to live life, not to put off till tomorrow what I can do today, to experience all that is around and to enjoy those around me. In case I don’t get the chance to say it, thanks for being in my life. Now go live yours.
I always thought that we are not to cave into the terrorists. Isn’t this what Sony is now doing? Word came down yesterday after the big movie chains backed out of showing the movie “The Interview”. What I don’t understand is why they even used a real dictator name when making this movie, I think that just asks for problems. Former presidential candidate Mitt Romney has suggested that Sony release the film online for free with a voluntary contribution to help to fight Ebola. Did Sony do the right thing by caving to the terrorists? I don’t think so, but if my back were against the wall like theirs would I do the same thing? I don’t know. Circling back to my first thought about not caving in, isn’t any strong negotiation for a raise or a new car kind of a smaller attack on a business? And once we give in there have we lost?
Tuesday, December 16, 2014
A kid sitting on Santa’s lap goes against everything that we teach our kids. Yesterday I got to help with North Pole duties and saw first-hand how some kids are afraid to go sit on the big guys lap, yet other kids are up and ready for the challenge. We are constantly telling our kids to stay away from strangers yet here we bring our kids to sit on the lap on a big loud man wearing red proclaiming Ho, Ho, Ho Merry Christmas. The thing about being a fly on the wall at the North Pole was that the old school toys were the ones that kids wanted the most, don’t get me wrong there were lots of asks for an Ipad or tablet, but legos and barbies were the most consistently asked for presents, the weirdest ask that I heard was for a Hillshrie Farms Smokies, cause the kid wanted to make something he saw on Pinterest. Also was nice to see a few kids ask for a surprise present. It is also nice to see that kids still believe and they were there with a smile and I also noticed when Santa said Merry Christmas that kids and the parents smiled and said Merry Christmas back. If you have not been through the Rotary Lights yet this year, bundle up grab some canned goods, and take a stroll through the park to enjoy the sights, the sounds and the atmosphere of the Rotary Lights at Riverside Park- and don’t forget that Santa and the reindeer are there until December 23.
Friday, December 12, 2014
A few months ago you couldn’t buy gas 3 gallons for ten bucks, this morning you can buy 4 gallons for under ten bucks. Personally I think this is great, however it makes me wonder why did we have to pay the inflated prices for so long. How long will we be privileged with the lower priced gas? Are these prices because the oil sands fields in North Dakota are starting to take a bite out of the opec nations strong hold in the oil business? Are fuel prices being manipulated so to manipulate the American economy? Are we being flooded with crude? Can we save it for a rainy day? When are the prices going to stop, when they do are the prices of other goods and services going to drop as well? AND finally with the prices being lower are you living a more meaningful life? Don’t get me wrong I love the lower priced gas, but what is the true cost?
Thursday, December 11, 2014
I am assuming that you have a commute into work every day. Day in and day out, in your car, back out of the garage, down the driveway and off to work. I do this every single day. On my drive in today I started thinking about the economy and how many businesses that I drive by each and every day, and for the most part I just drive by. I don’t think about who is doing what inside each of these businesses that get thousands driving by daily. Today my thoughts were on these businesses and how our local economy is tied to their existence. If we spend money at a business owned by our neighbors it helps them out, their kids and their employees, in turn the money we spend at these local businesses gets spent here and there and there and we see these dollars turn many times. On your way into work or way home from work today take notice at the businesses around you, stop in and say hi and spend some dollars local.
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
We are fast approaching the end of 2014, at the beginning of the year I made the resolution to work out more and to eat better. I can honestly say that I have followed through on both of these things, and I plan on doing the same for the next year. My dad used to always say the getting old isn’t for the faint at heart, I didn’t know what he meant – at the time, it is weird how at 46 I am starting to understand. I used to be able to sleep without a cpap machine or hear without hearing aids or not hurt the next day after having beers the night before, those things have all changed. As the year wraps up and the Christmas cookies get set out, my goal of moderation is being pushed and tested, but I can really truly say that for the most part I have succeeded in my year long quest for better health.
Tuesday, December 9, 2014
Have you walked past the Salvation Army Bell Ringers and not made eye contact? I was watching people yesterday afternoon walking by one of the bell ringers and lots just walked right on by with their heads hung low. I don’t get it. I understand that we are inundated with people with their hands out asking for help with this that or the other thing but a charity like the Salvation Army helps many in our community. You don’t have to give each and every time that you walk by a bell ringer, because I am guessing that you have given at another red kettle, even so, if there is someone out ringing the bell don’t feel as though you have to walk by with your head low, say hi, and give a nod of thanks and a wish for a great holiday season for their time ringing the bell. Most of the people who are out ringing the bell are doing so as a volunteer. By the way if you are looking to help out with the red kettle campaign bells2ring.org
Monday, December 8, 2014
I read a story over the weekend about most disappointing travel destinations. I was shocked that Los Angeles was on the list as was the pyramids, according to the story you can see the pyramids from a fast food restaurant. I guess when I have gone on vacation I have an idea in mind of where I would like to go, and really don’t have much in expectations because when you set them up in your head you most often are disappointed. A few years ago, my wife and I decided to take a trip to visit our friends in Nebraska, on the way we stopped at all the places we drove by every time we traveled through South Dakota, we had stopped at Mt Rushmore a few times when traveling back between Nebraska and Minnesota but never stopped at Wall Drug or the Badlands, there was also the Corn Palace and other drive by spots. We hit many of them on that trip and honestly didn’t have much expectations going in and wasn’t too disappointed in the Corn Palace or Wall Drug, they are just as expected tourist places. The Badlands on the other hand I could have spent a week there. Have you ever had the disappointing trip that you looked forward to?
Friday, December 5, 2014
Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is to skip church I am too old for fairy tales. From American Atheists. Those are pretty hard hitting words. I wonder how many true atheists are truly out there or how many people say they don’t believe in God because of the social pressures of not fitting in. I am not going to change any minds by telling you that I believe in God, nor am I going to make anyone switch the way they greet you in the Christmas season. I get that it is a choice I can choose to say Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays, I choose to say Merry Christmas, and in doing so I am not pushing my religion on you nor am I expecting you to change to my way of thinking. I am just wishing you peace at this time of the year. I really don’t get the war on Christmas as the day and I also don’t like the expectations that we have all come to require during the Christmas season, why are all the gifts exchanged, between people then with the stores. You know that is happening, right? Merry Christmas season.
Thursday, December 4, 2014
Another week another grand jury decision, I think that this is the reason that police would want to wear a camera while at work. The cops have a job that I would not want to do, there is no respect from lots of the community at large they are called names and they are yelled at and they are not respected, but if someone does you wrong, who is the first people who get called. I don’t get it. These brave men and women take an oath to uphold the law, and they do, I will admit that there are some bad cops as there are bad you name it, not every group has everyone good. But for the most part the people I have come into contact with that carry a gun and a badge are great people. Everywhere we go there are cameras on us, from stores, to atm’s to walking by people’s houses, to your walk in the woods. We are on camera more than we know. This is why I don’t understand the concern over cops wearing cameras, they say that storage is the issue; what if when they bring on cameras on cops that the video is kept for only a month, unless there is something brought up on a certain piece of video then it is kept indefinitely.