Monday, January 1, 2018

So This is the New Year (2018)...

Our happy little family over Christmas, 2017!

...And 2017 was the most insane year of my 36 years no question... I'm not saying that is a bad thing, but it is not in any way whatsoever. With a new addition to our family, this year has been challenging at times, but epic the whole way. Besides Ava, this year was pretty quiet in comparison to others. No trips, no moves, no major changes... and that is a-okay with me. ;)

So, on to the 2017's resolutions' results:

Gotta be there for my little girl, through thick and thin... Luckily, the thin is few and far between.
Be a Good Father!: The jury will be out out on this one for quite some time, but I like to think this was a success for the first six months of Ava's life. I have learned A LOT already, with a lot more learning coming. Sure, I've made a few mistakes, but my baby seems happy, and per the doctor, is healthy, so a win so far.

Volunteer: Meh. I did get to volunteer with the North Denver Cares Food Bank and for Junior Achievement via work, which was great, but there wasn't much other volunteering happening. As usual, I did raise money for St. Baldrick's and Movember (and actually met my fundraising goals for both), but I really could do more...

Improve Professionally: Not so much... Partially due to circumstances, but no real changes or improvements over the year...

Lauren and Zach are just a few of the guests on the Clint Podcast in 2017!
Learn at least two new skills/things and/or start a new hobby: Yeah, kinda. I did start podcasting (check out the Clint Podcast here), and I did ramp up my Funko collection (more on that later), but other than that, not much changed.. Only brewed one beer, a caramel cream ale I call "Ava Ale" in honor of my little girl, and stopped #ClintFlicks right after Ava was born, so a little slack off in this resolution.

Get Healthier: Pre June: Success! But June and beyond, no longer the case... Once Ava was due, I stopped working out due to lack of time and energy with lack of sleep and changes in routine. I can always eat better, but I think I need to improve my activity first.

Alright, so there's a summary of 2017... Time to look forward to 2018:

Ava and I will have a lot of learning to do in 2018... and we'll have fun doing it!
Be a Good Father: This will always be my top priority and resolution going forward. Ava is just so sweet and special, how could this not be #1? There's going to be a lot from seven months to 18 months, and I have to do my best! Luckily, Carolyn is a HUGE help and cannot be denied how well she does with Ava and with balancing all aspects of her life. This will be a challenge, but one I welcome with a smile. Teething, walking, talking, and everything that should happen in the next year! It's going to be sweet...

By the way, this also includes Bozley, who had a great year of health and happiness... and we are all excited to see him and Ava become best friends as more solids come into the picture...

Improve my health: Now, I need to start running more regularly again, no question. I also need to start working out more. I HATE the gym come the beginning of the new year, so I usually try to avoid it or go off hours some. I really want to to do some at home. I have a bike trainer I need to set up, some yoga I can do, and weights I can use. These might better options until Ava is sleeping through the night (I like the gym, just hard to get there at night when I only get a few hours with Ava). Besides being active, I would really like to improve my cholesterol as it could/should be lower. I'm thinking I might need to cut some dairy out of my diet... that will be even harder than being active... and, as always, being in Colorado, I need to drink more water.

Volunteer (and donate): Another resolution that will always be around. I would love to double my volunteering this year (so at least four times), and I would love to do it for organization(s) I know my friends are already involved. So, if you are doing the good deed and donating your time, and would like more help, you know where to find me. Along with that, I will continue my donating to friends and local causes as well as continue my fundraising for the Movemeber Foundation during the month before December and for St. Baldricks in March (though I will not be cutting my hair this year, rather, I will be raising money for my friend Jessica who's doing her second St. Baldricks). I would also like to raise some money for pets/animals in July, if anyone has any suggestions on organizations and/or campaigns...

I did a LOT of collecting in 2017... and loved it!  But gotta slow down now that Ava's in the picture... it's a good thing.
Reduce on the collecting: So in 2017, I really got involved with collecting, more so than any other year (you can see my full Funko collection here). I got involved with multiple facebook groups and really followed the trend closely. I found some great deals and, admittedly, I probably overpaid for a few things. Now that I feel my collection is caught up some, I've decided I need to slow down. That's gonna be tough because I am a sucker for the hype. And I'm not going to stop; I'm still going to collect the sets I already started, and if I happen to find a good deal or a rare pop for retail, I'm not going to be closed to that, but really, I need to slow it down. After all, I have a little girl to pay for now (and yes, she has her own collection as well).

By the way, if you ever want to get me anything, here's my wish list...

Improve Professionally: Can you believe I have been "a part" of Staples for over 12 years (the quotes are because three of those years were at Corporate Express before the merger)? I know, I can't either. The bad news is I have been in the same role for seven of those years (my responsibilities have changed and been expanded numerous times since). I would love a promotion of some sort, but part of the issue is my office is more of a satellite office and I think there's some residual from the merger limiting my potential. That doesn't mean I'm not going to keep trying, but I'm not going to limit myself at the same time. We'll see what happens as my current role is not something I am complaining about, but I feel I could do more.

Bozley is as great as ever!
Continue (and Grow) "Clint Co.": No, this isn't some corporation I started (though maybe I should for the tax benefits), but rather the umbrella term I use for my social activities. The Clint Podcast, Clint Streaming, and the possibility revitalized #ClintFlicks are part of "Clint Co." I want to continue doing these and even do more if/wehn possible. If you are interested in participating in any of the "Clint Co." programs, well, that would be awesome (just let me know)!

Of course, there are going to be a few other things, like reading more, updating the house, actually going to bed and not falling asleep on the couch, wearing new clothes I buy (vs. leaving in the closet), and being more interactive with others on social media, but these will this year's resolution.

Regardless of the above, I hope you all have a great 2018, and hope to see and/or talk to you soon!

Word Homies!

Don't act like you are not impressed by that mustahce at the end of Movember...
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Sunday, January 1, 2017

So This is the New Year (2017)...

Carolyn and I had fun celebrating the new year at the roaring 20's party at the Mount Vernon Country Club!
... I told you 2016 was going to be insane, and somehow, I already know the ride only intensifies for 2017... How? You gotta read the blog ;)

But first, a reflection of 2016:

'Bozley Castle' is pretty nice, wouldn't you say?
What a year. It was insane from a national standpoint, and some might say it was bad, but from my perspective, it turned out pretty great. Even though we still need to have many of you over, we moved into our newly built and customized home this year. I'm not gonna lie, we love it more and more every day. We had a little scare with Bozley with cancer during the summer, but that has been taken care of and we are extremely blessed. The rest of the family was just fine during this year, another humbling reflection. Care and I made a second trip to NYC together, which was a blast, followed by a Brug family trip to Myrtle Beach. Then in the fall, I made it out to Michigan to see some friends before they moved to New England. All the other usual activities were there as well, including coaching basketball with my brother in law for his daughters and doing the annual Fort Collins Brew Ride. And that was just part of the fun in 2016... Now let's see how I did on my resolutions:

Move Into Our Home!: Success! It took some time, we had to acquire new furniture and other items, and learn some upkeep, but so far, so good. We are by no means done, but we have a very comfortable situation.

Make More Time with my Wife: Even though this is ongoing, I feel this was a success. We have busy schedules for sure, but we found some time to hang out, goof off, and build on our relationship... with and without Bozley.

Volunteer!:... meh. Another year, another failure on this one. I have been very fortunate in my life, and at some point, I need to start giving back in the form of my time. Any help on this is appreciated (if you have an organization I can join that you support, let me know).

The #FoCoBRewRide16 was a success... already looking forward to '17!
Learn at least two new skills/things and/or start a new hobby: Well, kinda at least. I did brew two new beers in 2016 (first time in three years)! Also, I did some house stuff (obviously), streamed almost every Tuesday in 2016, and created a #ClintFlicks video for all the movies I saw in theaters in 2016 (nearly 50)!

Improve Professionally: Not a lot to report here. Still in the same roll and company, which isn't bad, but I would love to keep moving up and beyond.

Get Healthier: Always working to improve, but this one was pretty good. Stayed active, ate better (thanks to Carolyn), and actually got my cholesterol below 200 for the first time in years!

So... 2016 was a busy year, with 2017's potentially being busier and crazier! I still need to do a better job revisiting my resolutions throughout the year. I'll keep that in mind as I list my 2017 resolutions. Speaking of...

Be a Good Father!: And this goes beyond Bozley (though he will still be a very large part of our lives)! Carolyn and I are expecting a little girl in June. We are super excited, anxious, nervous, and pumped, along with other emotions. With that said, Any advice is welcomed as we become first time human parents.

Volunteer: To be clear, I do give back financially monthly and participant in fundraisers such as St. Baldricks and Movember, it's just that I need to actually give some time to some worthwhile organization... I just need some flexibility and not a strong commitment (like Big Brothers and Big Sisters) with my upcoming lifestyle change...

Improve Professionally: Now with another mouth to feed, I would be nice to have more income... and nice to move up to impress my child...

No matter what, Bozley will still be a huge part of our lives, don't worry.
Learn at least two new skills/things and/or start a new hobby: I still have a guitar I need to learn to play and camera I need to use more... Plus who knows what else will present itself in 2017 (I need to learn to change a diaper and rock a baby to sleep after all)...

Get Healthier: It's always on here, but in addition to staying active and eating well as mentioned above, I have a couple specifics I want to add. One being I need to drink more water. It really shouldn't be that hard, but in Colorado, it should be more of a necessity. The other specific action is to sleep more/better. I have a habit of falling asleep on the couch, then getting up in the middle of the night to get ready and go to bed. I overcame this in a previous resolution, but have fallen back in the bad habit. I'm thinking it would be better to get a full night sleep, and I'm going to need it with a little one on the way, so no better time like the present, right?

There you go, another year of new year's resolution. I hope you all have a great 2017, and hope to see and/or talk to you soon!

Happy New Year from ALL the Crocketts!
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Friday, January 1, 2016

So This is the New Year (2016)...

Of course, we rang in the new year in style...
... And it's going to be insane. What makes me say that? Read on...

First, a reflection of 2015:

The 'Rocky Ghosts' had a great seasons and improved immensely!
I think of 2015 as a year that was to prepare for the years ahead. Read on and you'll see that 2016 is going to be busier than any other year previous. With that said, we had a lot of fun in 2015. Coached my nieces' basketball teams in January/February, raised money for St. Baldrick's and for shaving my head in March, had an amazing Fort Collins brew ride in July, Care and I went to NYC together in October, and had the most epic Mustache in Movember. That's just part of the fun in 2015... Let's see how I did on my resolutions:

Buy a house!: Well, technically, we don't own a house yet... That's because we are building one! Originally, we were supposed to move in October, but delays like weather and politics have delayed us to 2016. Still, we are thrilled with this option compared to the others we could find. Let's call this one completed.

Make more time with my wife: Sigh... this one didn't work out so well. It's not that we didn't try, but rather just didn't have time with work and other commitments. This should be an ongoing resolution...

Volunteer!:... Once again, no dice on this one. I donated to lots of charitable organizations, I participated in multiple fundraising activities, but never did get into the volunteering again this year... hope next year...

Bozley is a big fan of his 'Guncle' Zach... Ask Zach what 'Guncle' means.
Learn at least two new skills/things and/or start a new hobby: Sigh... Nope. Since we didn't move, I didn't even get more room to brew beer. Didn't use my camera as much as I wanted and, sadly, didn't touch my guitar. Alas, not much happened here. I did get into collecting again, and have an extensive Amiibo collection, and I did teach Bozley some new tricks, but that's about it. Things are looking good for next year, however...

Improve professionally: So, yeah, this one kinda worked out. Made some more money, got some more responsibilities, so yeah, guess this was a success. Same company, same role, and I'm okay with that for 2015...

Get Healthier: Mmm... Maybe? I mean, my cholesterol did go down some. And I did a decent job staying active and working out... Okay, I'll give myself credit on this... though I could always do better.

So... 2015 was busy, but not in regards resolutions. I need to do a better job revisiting them throughout the year. I'll keep that in mind as I list my 2016 resolutions below...

Move into our home!: Big shock here, I'm sure. We have been in the building process for nine months now. I am ready to move into a place with so much more space, many new features, and closer to work (among other benefits). I'm excited to see how Carolyn (and I) decorate our new home. I'm looking forward to entertaining friends again. Currently, we are scheduled to be in April 1st, and I am really hoping for no (more) delays. Pictures coming, so stay tuned.

Make more time with my wife: Like I said, ongoing. I feel this one might be even more important this year vs. previous years as we talk about adding to our family... Don't worry, Bozley will still have a huge roll.

Volunteer!:... Part of the reason I haven't volunteered (much) is I'm not sure what direction to go and what organizations to be involved. I would love to join someone as they do something they are passionate about, so if that's you, please, please let me know, as I would love to give back what I can.

2015 was the best Fort Collins brew ride yet!  Hope you'll join us in july 2016 for the next one!
Learn at least two new skills/things and/or start a new hobby: I am VERY excited to be brewing beer again in our new home (since it's been over two years). In addition, I am actually planning to start streaming in 2016. I want to stream video games, movie and restuarant reviews, and even have some other ideas (hardware fundraising page here, if you are interested in contributing). Hope this will also inspire me to do more with my camera and actually try my guitar again...

Improve professionally: To be clear, I am not upset with my current situation... But that doesn't mean I want to be in this situation forever. I would love to actually get into management, and would love to learn more and get more perspective. This isn't a high priority, but something to never forget.

Get Healthier: I could always do better on this. With Carolyn being the health guru she is, this should not be hard to improve... But will there be time? Only time will tell...

There you go, my new year's resolution. I hope you all have a great 2016, and hope to see or talk to you soon!

The Crocketts hope 2016 is the best year yet for everyone!
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Thursday, January 1, 2015

So This is the New Year (2015)...

The Crocketts know how to party, can't you tell?
... And it's going to be a good one. How do I know? Read on...

First, a reflection of 2014:

In comparisons to other years, 2014 was pretty calm. No marriage, no moving, no job changes, no broken bones, etc and so forth. "No news is good news" they say, and I'm inclined to agree with them (whoever "they" are). Even though the year was "quiet," it doesn't mean we didn't have fun. We went to eight (yes eight!) weddings this year. We showed our rents Vegas, mine for the first time. Ant the return of Movember was a success. That's just part of the fun in 2014... Let's see how I did on my resolutions:

Volunteer!: Ugh... Not great on this. Carolyn and I did CSUnity again this year, and we hope to continue that tradition in 2015. I also join Denver Gives, but I have not been able to participate much due to other time committments. I hope to do more with them this year (and they are always looking for more help, hint hint, wink wink), but I would be happy to do more for a worthwhile organization, so let me know if anyone you are working with is looking for more volunteers (this will continue to be a resolution).

Learn at least two new skills/things and/or start a new hobby: Well, kind of I suppose. After talking about it for years, I finally took a CPR class. Learned some for sure, and will need a refresher at some point, but still a positive experience. I still need to do the guitar lessons I've talked about previously, and will need to think of more for 2015...

Make some positive moves professionally:... Moving on.

On school nights, be in bed by midnight: I'd say this was a success. I didn't make it 100% of the time, but I stopped falling asleep on the couch as often, which has helped with better sleep, so it's all good. Even though this will no longer be a resolution, it will be something to keep up for the foreseeable future.

Keep working out: The last two weeks, that has been a fail... but the rest of the year? Success! And it will be again starting next week. No need to keep this one on here as this something I'll keep doing, resolution or not.

Keep in touch with friends: This one was a success. Monthly happy hours continue without a hitch, we did dinner every month with a new couple for the most part, and we had lots fun this year with other events. The annual Fo Co Brew Ride was awesome, and we'll do it again in July 2015 (along with potential rides in Boulder and Denver for June and August). This will no longer be a resolution, but don't worry, I have no intent on getting lame anytime soon.

So 2015 has a ton of potential to be awesome, but it's not without effort on my part... with that said, here are my resolutions:

No matter where we live, Bozley will be in charge!
Buy a house!: So my family has been in a one bed room place for over a year now. And while we have an awesome deal and situation, it's time to move on and move up. Bozley needs a yard, we need room to entertain, and, if we ever want to expand our family, we'll need more bedrooms. We start this process in a few weeks with a meeting with our mortgage lender. It's going to be exciting...

Make more time with my wife: To be clear, nothing is wrong with our relationship. In fact, I love my wife and love spending time with her (we've both been home the last couple weeks and it's been wonderful to be together this much). I've decided that I need to make more time to keep our relationship running on all cylinders. How? Well, for now, planning on a some date nights. At least two a month. I plan to expand on that as the year goes on, but one step at a time.

Volunteer!:.. See above. Not much else to say.

Learn at least two new skills/things and/or start a new hobby: Part of moving and having more room will mean I can start brewing beer again! Very excited about. And having a new home will probably mean some home improvement projects. Haven't forgotten about the guitar collecting dust in my place either. And I wouldn't mind learning to do more with my camera...

Improve professionally: I'm leaving this one vague on purpose. I want to improve my work situation, but at the moment, I'm not sure exactly how. I hope this year to really spend some time examining options and improving skills as much as possible. We'll see what that means as time goes on...

Say what you want, we are a good looking family.
Get Healthier: I've been doing pretty good at my staying active, with working out, playing soccer, and so forth, but I think I need to do more. I need to watch my diet more, especially since my cholesterol is pretty high. Getting more sleep, taking some more/different vitamins, and laughing more couldn't hurt either.

Think that's enough for 2015? Because I do. Maybe a resolution would be to check in with my resolutions more often, eh?

Anyway, have a great 2015! Hope to see or talk to you soon!

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Wednesday, January 1, 2014

So This is the New Year (2014)...

Carolyn and I at dinner during our honeymoon in St. Lucia (November, 2013).
Hold on, I need to get the cob webs off of here...

There, that's better. Sorry for being MIA... glad that wasn't one of my resolutions for the 2013 ;)

So this will be the eighth, yes, eighth time I've written a blog for the new year and made resolutions. Regardless if they are (all) actually completed, I'm at least happy that I take the time to write them down...

First, I would like to take a moment and reflect on 2013... What a year eh? The most obvious event, Carolyn and my wedding in July. We could not have asked for a better day. Catalina Island was beautiful, our friends and family were wonderful, the food was epic, and Carolyn looked BEAUTIFUL! We went on the Honeymoon in November to St. Lucia, and that was just wonderful! We didn't leave the Rendezvous resort, which was on the beach... can you blame us? ;) We also sold "The Penthouse," my condo in Broomfield, and moved into Carolyn's Sister's Rental in Cherry Creek between October and November... Yeah, the commute to work is longer, and Bozley doesn't care for the hardwood floors, but it's nice and the location is pretty sweet. Speaking of Bozley, he's doing pretty good. He had a rough September, hurting his back again, but he's back to normal. We're going to be giving him acupuncture in 2014 to help with his back and,this might even help with his anxiety. The Monday after the wedding, Carolyn started her new job as Director of Fellow Development at Rocky Mountain Prep and is loving it (it doesn't hurt that her commute is literally eight minutes). Long story short, life is good!

So, without further adieu, let's review my 2013 resolutions...

Carolyn and I got married on July 17th, 2013, on Catalina Island.
Get married!: Success! Not that it is a surprise... but no complaints... and I'll never have that on my resolutions again.. 1/1 ;)

Volunteer (more): This one I wouldn't call achieved. I did another CSUnity project in April, but that's all I did. I really need to do better on this in the future, and as you can imagine, this one will be included in the 2014 resolutions.

Complete at least two home improvement projects: Um... fail? With the move, I did have to do a few things, but nothing I would call big, at least I can think of... A little paint, a few repairs, but nothing big. With us now renting, I guess this one will be on the back burner for a bit...

Learn at least two new skills and things: Well... no, another miss. At least I can't think of anything... But I like to use moving and getting married as excises as to why this didn't happen. I won't be able to do that next year...

Make some positive moves professionally:... No comment.

Physically, I want to be 150 lbs by the wedding and be in better shape that I am now: Actually, I think this was partially achieved. I think that I was over 150 lbs around the time of the wedding, but have gone down a little since then. With the move and the changes, my working out took a hit, but we're getting back into the routine. I don't think I'm in better shape than the beginning of 2013, but I don't think I'm (much) worse. Health will be a continuing goal of mine.

I want to do an even better job communicating and updating with all my friends: Okay, I have to give myself credit on this one. Did a pretty good job. The happy hours continued throughout the year, and we actually did pretty good having dinner with a different couple each month... you know that will continue.

So what about 2014? Well...

Volunteer!: CSUnity will be something I do every year, but I want to to do more. If anyone is doing any volunteering with an organization they like, and they are looking for additional help, well, you know how to get a hold of me :)

Even though we moved, Bozley is still the boss at our place... Though we should teach him some trick in 2014.
Learn at least two new skills/things and/or start a new hobby: So, I have no mortgage, no car payment, no kids... yeah, I need to do some things for me as this window of opportunity is closing. Beer brewing will still be happening, but on a limited basis as I no longer will be brewing at our place (until we move again), so it will only be with other people. Guitar and CPR are still the top two new skills I want to learn, but I wouldn't be surprised if something else came up as the year goes on... But if you have any suggestions or know of any resources, you know I want to know.

Make some positive moves professionally:... no where to go but up :)

On school nights, be in bed by midnight: As Carolyn will tell you, I am notorious for falling asleep on the couch watching TV, waking up, brushing my teeth, and then coming to bed sometime between 1:00 and 5:00 AM. Probably not the best was to get a good night sleep. So, I will be ready and in bed by midnight every night before work, not just for me, but for Carolyn.

Keep working out: I feel like I need to keep working out, get rid of some holiday fat I added on. That and I want to get into better shape for my soccer team. And, now that I'm finally getting acquainted with my new gym, I want to do something more. I want to play outdoor soccer this summer, I would love to play some basketball (pick up or otherwise), and I might even try to do a 10k race this year.. we'll see.

Even though we're growing up, I still se 'The Tribe'.
Keep in touch with friends: Happy Hours and dinners will continue. Like every summer, we'll be doing the Fort Collins Brewery Bike Tour again (tentatively Saturday July 26th, come one come all). I'm willing to do more and participate in things, so keep me in mind.

I think that's it for the resolutions. I have to wonder what 2014 holds, and it's going to be different as 2013 had a ton going on going in. With that said,

Happy New Year! Hope your 2014 is the best for everyone!

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Monday, April 1, 2013

Starbucks Appreciation Day: Sunday, April 7th, 2013

Starbucks Appreciation Day is Sunday, April 7th, 2013, so make sure to visit to show your support of them and equal rights.

Hello again readers. In case you haven't heard yet, I am advocating that everyone visit Starbucks on Sunday, April 7th, 2013 for Starbucks Appreciation Day. I'm not saying don't go anytime before or after that (in fact, go as much as you like), but make sure to visit this establishment on the 7th. Why? Well, Starbucks is one of the most vocal companies that approves and encourages the equal rights of people. No, their not the only business that supports equal rights, but they are one of the biggest and one of the easiest to visit. By visiting anytime on Sunday, April 7th, 2013, you are showing your support for a progressive business, and, more importantly, for equal rights of human beings. This needs to become viral, so make sure to share every and all ways that you can. To help, when using social media, use the hash tags #StarbucksAppreciation and #ShareTheLove.

I bet this sounds familiar to most of you. That's because this isn't a new technique to send a message. Back in August 1st, 2012, Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee urged people to eat at Chic Fil A to show their support of the "Bibical Definition" of marriage, meaning that marriage can only exist between a man and a woman (You can read my blog post from that day here). The was a ton of media coverage and a lot of talk about this, and when the actual day came, every Chic Fil A restauarant was swamped. Since then, Chick Fil A has sent mix messages about their feelings towards gay couples, have not been contributing to organtiaztions that discriminate against the LGBT community, and really haven't pressed the issue. Regardless, It was sad to see such a negative and close minded perspective have such a response. So, this time, we want to encourage and acknowledge a business that wants to change the world for the better, all while gaining some positive attention and, hopefully, adding some actual statistic to a the steam of a hot political subject.

In addition to drinking coffee, I suddenly want to use my iPhone more, buy an electronic of some sort, maybe get some close, and watch a movie with my favorite Jim Henson Puppets...As I mentioned, there are a number of important and big businesses that are supporting equal rights. George Takei recently shared the picture you see to the left. Obviously this is becoming more and more acceptable, as evident by Colorado's recent signing of Civil Unions into law. I have no idea what the latest polls show in support of equal rights (which will always baffle me that we need polls), but I wouldn't trust any of those numbers. Hence, a planned visit to a national business is going to add "fuel to the fire" to encourage businesses of equal rights.

'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness...' Makes sense to me.Another way you can continue to show your support of equal rights is to support the Human Rights Campaign, or HRC. That equal sign you're seeing more and more of, especially last week? Yeah, that's there logo. And seeing it become more popular and seen more in different ways is heartwarming... Anyway, check out their website for ways you can contribute and continue to show and grow support.

So for those reasons, and more, Make sure to stop by Starbucks on Sunday, April 7th. Not a fan of coffee? That's okay, they have lots of other beverages, including teas, smoothies, and cider. They also have food to check out (I hear their cookies are really good). Can't get to a Starbucks on Sunday? That's okay too. Check out their website for products there as well. And if you don't want anything from them (which I find hard to believe), get someone a gift card, as those are VERY popular gifts. The way I see it, there are no excuses to not go. With that all said, I hope you'll join us at your local neighborhood Starbucks for #StarbucksAppreciation Day on Sunday, April 7th, 2013, to show your support and #SpreadTheLove.

Cheers to a great company and to equal rights!

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Lent 2013: My Time Away from Television

As Homer would say, 'TV, let's never fight again.'

Hello readers! Another year of Lent come and gone. In the tradition of giving up something I hold "near and dear," for Lent (like facebook, chocolate, coffee, and alcohol), I gave up television, movies, and videos. Why did I give these up? Well, I spend way too much time in front of the "idiot box" and need to spend my time doing other things instead...

... What kind of other things? Well, clean, read, sleep, anything really. Little more on that later.

I discovered giving up TV was harder than I thought... And I knew it was going to be hard. It is EVERYWHERE... for example, I go running at the gym, and the TV is set up right in front of every treadmill. If I go out to eat, it seems a TV is always near by. Even at home, the majority of my home has the TV visible when Carolyn is enjoying some (quality) programming. I really didn't realize how it was everywhere until I couldn't watch it.

A few things I missed while not watching the tube:

Homer loves sports as much as I do...
  • The Oscars
  • The Denver Nuggets 15 game winning streak.
  • The majority of March Madness and Colorado State Men's Basketball's rise (and fall) to (and from) the top 25 in the nation.
  • New episodes of Community, The Simpsons, Bob's Burgers, SNL, and Raising Hope.
  • The Bachelor Finale (we had money on the winner and guests over to watch, yet I kept myself occupied with other things)

  • Now, unlike past "sacrifices," I didn't do a great job with this one. Usually, I completely abstain from the temptation and go without a taste, peek, etc, but I can't claim that this time. The temptation was in all directions and I did watch a little and listened to a lot more. I feel like I was more engaged in the Oscars this year than I ever was before, even though I didn't "watch it" (though I did see Jennifer Lawrence fall while going to accept her best actress award in a wedding like dress). I saw a little of JT on SNL (which I look forward to seeing again/more of), and I even saw some of The Biggest Loser. But, for the most part, I was good. I never turned on the TV or played an internet video, so I like to think I did okay.

    There were positives with this experience though. I actually got some things done while I wasn't watching TV. Things I should do, like my taxes and working out, and things I don't usually do, like read (Carolyn got me some boks for Valentine's day I've been working on). I got motivated to do a little pre spring cleaning and organizing of my files, my closet, my cabinets, and my kitchen. One other aspect I really liked about giving up TV was I pulled out some old CDs I haven't listened to in a long time... Some I like more than I did before, others I liked all over again.

    So what's going to come of this? Well, I have missed TV and going to the movies, along with video games, and I look forward to watching and playing again, but I'm hoping I can slow down a bit late on week nights and some other times. I wanted to read Game of Thrones, but haven't started that yet, hopefully I will soon. And if I'm not watching as much TV due to new habits formed during Lent, well, I might actually get that done. Wish me luck. So there you go, another year of Lent in the books... what will I give up next year? Who knows, I have a few other things to focus on in the meantime ;) Hope you're all well and to see you soon!

    Hope this isn't me too often anymore...