The Elusive But Vital Pursuit of Balance, Part 571

TDsweatsTHINGS WERE proceeding smoothly, until suddenly they weren’t. Everything blew up.

Work exploded, as the calendar moved into my department’s busiest time of the year and we took on a major new project on top of our usual other duties.

Home exploded, as the girls added play rehearsal and spring sports to their already lengthy litany of activities, as I tacked t-ball coaching to my bulletin board of commitments, and as J. and I delved further into the planning stages of a big-time renovation initiative.

And I exploded, as months of wintertime consumption and hibernation had me feeling heavy and dull, my clothes uncomfortable and my body looking decidedly middle-aged.

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Chocolate, Professional Development, and Writing Beyond the Job

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THERE WAS chocolate, of course, as we were in Hershey. Even better, there was astoundingly rich camaraderie and fellowship to match the professional development offered by this year’s annual spring CUPRAP conference, a gathering of secondary- and higher-education communications professionals.

As chair of the group’s conference committee, I encouraged attendees to tweet the sessions using the hashtag above so that we could get some nifty online conversation going and allow those who couldn’t make it to follow along. And it worked wonderfully. (Go to Twitter and search for #cuprap13 and you’ll see what I mean.)

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I Never Thought Washing Dishes Would Be a Great Way to Start a New Year

ProseccoHAVING MADE it to midnight, I was hoping to start 2013 by sleeping in. Alas, I woke up at about 6 this morning and tossed for an hour before arising and trudging downstairs to see how destructive our New Year’s Eve party had been.

Mrs. D. had put away the leftover food while I got the girls prepped for and into bed, but given the late hour, she hadn’t done much else. So what awaited me were a dishwasher to empty, a bar to disassemble, a gaggle of wine glasses to wash, piles of dishes to scrape and clean, and a couple of tubs of leftover beer and Prosecco to bring inside and cram into the refrigerator.

I made coffee, turned on my iPod, and went to work.

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Why New Year’s Resolutions Are Crap Without This One Important Thing

YOU FINISH your list yet?

If not, you don’t have much time. It is the 31st, after all. If you don’t figure out how to be a better you in the next 15 hours or so, you’ll have to spend the next year as the current, subpar you.

Then again, if you’re like me, you can make it easy by recycling past years’ resolutions. My annual late-December self-reflection tends to yield the same goals: Continue reading

Okay, So It Wasn’t 1,667 Words a Day; I STILL Had a Good Month Writing

NOVEMBER STARTED with high hopes. But as the month draws to a close, I will emphatically not be among the thousands of writers celebrating the completion of their works and hence their victories in National Novel Writing Month.

blogrssAt the same time, on this final day of November, I am very happy to have had my best blogging month in … years, probably. These posts will never get published, and no more than a couple of hundred people, if that, is likely ever to see them, but I’m writing, goddamn it, and it feels good. It’s as if I’ve reconnected with an old friend and realized over a couple of beers how much I missed him.

So for those who have stuck with it from Shallow Center and Poor Richard’s Scorecard on through to Dadlibbing, my heartfelt thanks. And to the newcomers getting acquainted through Facebook and Twitter, welcome. I’m grateful that you’re here and hope to give you more to read in the weeks and months to come. | DL

Image courtesy of digitalart / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

What I Learned at My High School Reunion

HAS FACEBOOK rendered the high school reunion obsolete?

Nope.

Last night I gathered with several dozen people with whom I graduated 25 (gulp) years ago. Several of them are Facebook friends, so I already knew about their professional successes, their personal situations, their kids, and what they looked like. In other words, most of the reasons you go to a reunion had been obviated.

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When What to My Wondering Eyes Should Appear …

LEAVES CONTINUE to fall from the trees, a week remains in November, and all of America will gorge themselves on turkey sandwiches this afternoon. Today’s retail tsunami notwithstanding, we have every reason to bask in Thanksgiving’s glow for a little while longer.

But I’m ready to turn the page. I’m ready for bells jingling, chestnuts roasting, and herald angels singing. I’m ready for Nat King Cole, Harry Connick, Jr., and the Waitresses. I’m ready for classic holiday specials old and new.

I used to delay my Christmas reveling until well into December. Chalk it up to some kind of weird purist streak–one heavily marinated in Catholic guilt–that demanded proper respect for the season and all of that nonsense.

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