Monday, January 31, 2011

Catch Someone Doing Something Right!

Many of us receive performance evaluations for the work that we do. But that feedback and accompanying reward often only come once a year. The most impacting reward you can give can be recognizing and showing appreciation for the little things someone does each and every day. Catch someone doing something right today and at least offer a handshake, a smile, or a word of encouragement.

I guarantee they will appreciate it and you will feel good about it in the process. It’s a win-win!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Teamwork is Key!

Heard an expression a few years back and it was an acrostic for the word TEAM. Together Everyone Accomplishes More!

I really agree with the concept and believe that teamwork is the key no matter the venue. A business team, a sports team, or a family all have members that bring a differentiating value to the table. Use your strengths and work on your areas that need improvement and add value to the team that you are on.

Together everyone really can accomplish more!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Bringing the Funny!!!

Ralph Harris is an amazingly funny comedian. Many of us were introduced to him in 2007 when he was a finalist on NBC’s Last Comic Standing. Mandi, the kids and I watched every week as he competed and were left in tears from laughing. His comedy is real and that is what makes it so extra funny for me. His takes on relationships, parenting, and how we interact with each other are spot on and laugh out loud funny.

In 2009 – the last time he performed in the Tampa Bay area – I just missed the performance and was sick about it. We learned a few weeks ago that he had booked another show in Tampa. It was pretty close to our wedding anniversary so Mandi and I decided that we would use the show as a backdrop to us celebrating 23 years of marriage. The show was last night at the Seminole Hard Rock CafĂ© in Tampa. Seeing him live was a treat beyond what I anticipated. As I write this almost 12 hours later, my sides are still aching from laughing so hard and so continuously. His delivery, style, and interaction with the audience are top notch. I applaud his humility and that combined with the incredible God-given ability to make us laugh at life and ourselves will surely continue his success. Thanks for making our anniversary that much more special and please keep bringing the funny!

You can bump into Ralph online: On Twitter his username is @ralphharris He has a great fan page on Facebook: Ralph Harris Fans and actually interacts with fans on there! I know, crazy right?! Also check his website frequently: for his calendar and a show near you. Go see him live, you won’t be disappointed!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Talking To Myself

I came to the realization that the most important voice I need to listen to is my own. People will say what they will. Sometimes what people say is very encouraging and uplifting. Sometimes what people say is hurtful or even demoralizing. But if I want to stay positive, stay upbeat, stay focused then I have the power to do that by being disciplined in what I say to myself.

I have to remind myself that I was made for a purpose and that I was given the tools to fulfill that purpose. I have to remind myself that I can win! I have to remind myself that I am unique and that I am the only me that will ever be. I have to remind myself that I can trump every negative experience with 3 or 4 positive ones. I have to tell myself that my attitude won’t be influenced by what goes on around me but will be shaped and uplifted by what goes on inside of me. I have to remind myself that my attitude is a choice and I have the freedom to make that choice everyday. I tell myself that each day is a most precious gift and that I can choose to do whatever it takes to make it awesome.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

She Took a Chance

23 years or 276 months or 8,395 days ago, it was the day before she took a chance on me. A chance that I would make her happy, a chance that I would always be there, and a chance that I would be the husband, father, and friend she always dreamed of.

The forecast called for heavy snowfall in the Hudson Valley region and some time that day it started coming down big time. Wedding headquarters was in Newburgh but the wedding was being held at the Cadet Chapel ‘over the mountain’ at West Point. Some awesome friends provided the several 4-wheel drive SUVs that were necessary to transport the wedding party to rehearsal. How cool is that? The snow came to an end some time that night and the roads were cleared and drivable by morning. The clouds cleared and left a brilliant sunny day. I don’t remember there being a cloud in the sky.

So tomorrow we celebrate 23 years of marriage. I could not have hoped for 8,395 better days. I can only imagine how great the next 25,000 + days are going to be!

Charlie Wilson sums it best for me in his song You Are. “You are, the reason I love, the reason I trust, God sent me an angel. You are the best in the world, a wonderful girl.”

Friday, January 7, 2011

The Prince Departs

I jokingly refer to our son Jared as the Prince of Zamunda, the heir to the Jackson throne and all that I survey - after one Eddie Murphy’s characters in the still hilarious classic, Coming to America! His schedule at school (Indiana University) is pretty demanding so when he comes home he gets a chance to unwind, refresh, get all of his favorite foods, and be treated like a prince. I mean there are no violins playing to wake him up in the morning or rose pedals dropped at his feet everywhere he goes, but you know what I mean.

We had a fantastic time over the holidays. Amusement parks, movies, lots of good food, lots of laughs, you know the drill. Was so great having the whole family together for Christmas and to bring in 2011. I don't take that for granted because I know that may not always be the case. Well he went back to school today and no matter how many times we do this, it does not get any easier. A part of my heart hurts because I know that I won’t see him again until Spring break, but another part of my heart smiles because I know he is doing whatever it takes to chase down his dreams. In short order, the latter outweighs the former but right now it just kind of stinks.

So proud of him for all that he has done, is doing, and will do. Is it Spring break yet??!!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year!

New hope, New dreams, New expectations, New vision, New determination, New friends, New moments, New laughter, New smiles, New fears, New tears, New smells, New tastes, New failures, New victories, New fluffy, New cowbell, New hugs, and most importantly New socks!