Things I Love: Vacation

My D.N.A. is such that the sole reason I work is so that I can take long breaks from working. I kinda like my job(s) believe it or not, but I love taking a vacation from it.

Earth shattering blogging, I know.

I’ve spent these last 9 days renting a small cabin with my family, with more of my family renting cabins nearby, and it’s sad that today’s my last day. I had intended on getting up bright and early every day and blogging a little, so I could pretty much journal the entire vacation, but the bed was too cozy, the guilt-free ability to stare at Twitter and Facebook for an hour was too tempting, and my motivation and creativity was lacking. I had intended on writing a little of my sales book. I thought I’d continue exercising so I could justify the massive consumption of calories, sugary treats, and beer. But like the John Lennon lyric says … life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”

“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” -John Lennon

Instead, I figured out a way to simply enjoy relaxing. I barely checked my Blackberry but once or twice a day (you can’t expect me to go totally cold-turkey). I didn’t once check-in at the office. I swam in the water with my kids for hours and hours (something rare, I noticed …most adults do NOT swim with their kids, but simply sit on shore or a dock and watch their kids swim …why?). I built sand castles (which is suddenly becoming my vacation thing to do). I went tubing and water skiing. I went to the sand bar twice (thrice if you count this other little lagoon as a “sand bar.”) I hadn’t planned on it, but I rented a paddle board for a day and the kids loved it.

I should’ve had plans of having no plan – I would’ve felt more accomplished.

My 8-year-old said yesterday she was sorta glad to be going home because she misses her bed and her toys, so that means 8 or 9 days is a perfect vacation length. I kinda agree. I mean …I agree until 12 noon tomorrow when I’m still filtering through the 500 emails that wait for me in my office in-box, and until I’m bothered by my long-sleeve dress shirt and wool dress pants that will replace my bathing suit and t-shirt (or no t-shirt) that was my vacation wardrobe.

I guess vacation isn’t “vacation” unless you have something to take a vacation from, so I’ll look forward and work and work until the next one. Profound? No. See why I didn’t do much blogging?

It’s time to pack up. Soon we’ll hit the road and head back into the city. I’ll trade a view of a crystal blue lake for a dry, yellow lawn. I’ll trade sandcastle building for negotiating and sitting in traffic. But I wouldn’t trade any of it.

Things I Love: Good Coffee, Always

So you stuck around for a second entry? Thanks. I promise, I’m going to clean up this place. Do you think I want white font on a kaleidoscope background? No, I do not. My web designer (also known as “me”) is on vacation.

Speaking of vacation …just because a man goes on vacation doesn’t mean he should have to spend his morning drinking bad coffee.

Packing for vacation is never fun. You make lists. You, at first, have plenty of time and then suddenly it’s the day before, and the morning of, and you’re running around trying to find all your phone chargers and power chords, you keep remembering things that weren’t on your list, preparation leads to a sense of panic, you can’t get the timers to work, and all the yelling going on between you, your spouse, your kids, and the post office and their refusal to employ a human capable of answering a phone and accurately stopping your mail …it all makes you wonder why you go on vacation at all.

Back to the coffee and stress. I decided, amidst the chaos, something urgently important was figuring out a way to travel with my Aeropress and my gourmet Chazzano coffee  (Tanzanian Peaberry, to be exact). So, did I spend the entire morning of our departure searching high and low in my house for a worthy box (aka “case”) for transporting my coffee routine and ritual (it was the box from my netbook …and she said it’s silly that I keep the boxes that all my electronic devices come in …”last laugh” …I’m having it)?  Then, did I spend quality packing/organizing time peeling off price tags and labels of said netbook box, and did I spend more time with a black Sharpie covering up stuff? Again …yes, I did. And will I, at some future time, hit Jo-Ann Fabrics or Michael’s and find foam that I can cut-out in the shape of my coffee grinder, my Aeropress, the filters, and bags of beans? Yes. I will. And I’ll film that, too.

I’m happy to report, however, that 24 hours later, I’m sitting, writing, enjoying magnificent coffee, and the pre-packing, pre-trip fighting and fits have turned into smiles and 3 kids sleeping in late. It was all worth it. See you tomorrow.

Things I Think: Why Blogs Fail

Why does anything fail? We have big, grand ideas and right at first, we get all kinds of crazy awesome feedback. “Your blog is hilarious!” a friend might say. 12 people ‘Like’ it. We write 4 posts in five days and we learn about how to set up a blog, we add pictures, read an article about a guy who makes $10,000 each month just by writing about power tools and we think, “that is sooooooo me.”

But dang if it doesn’t seem like 9 out of every 10 blogs I read and ‘Like’ follows the same fate. Here one year, gone the next. Always a promise of “I’ll be back soon and with big announcements” or something. But, they never come back.

Why?

I’m guessing it’s the writing. The pressure to produce written material every day and make it slightly entertaining, a little bit interesting, and with some soul …well, that’s the challenge.

Me? To solve this dilemma, I  started a new blog. For the last 5 years I’ve had “Don’s Ego” which was my miscellaneous ramblings. Sporadic. Unconnected. And certainly not the type of blog that a cordless drill manufacturer would latch on to. So here you go …by the very title of this blog, I hope you realize it’s going to be all over the place (Kaleidoscopic), but when I get going on a topic or something, you can bet I’m going to hone in and focus (Raygun).

That’s it. For now. Oh, I also think “Kaleidoscopic Raygun” is more clever than “Don’s Ego.”