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46 Years On This Pale Blue Dot

I had a birthday on Friday and celebrated my 46th year on this planet. It was a low-key birthday around our house with us still being in full quarantine. It’s surreal thinking about how long I’ve been here. While I’ve done many things in my life, there are even more goals and things that I’d love to accomplish and experience.

Pandemic Birthday Picture With Crazy Candles

Even in these chaotic and crazy times we shouldn’t lose sight of our dreams. If you’re like me, you’ve become bored binge-watching television and ran out of interesting content to consume. I can only watch so many old television reruns.

This past year has been half pandemic and half not. With that in mind, I thought I’d take account of what we’ve done and what I’ve accomplished in that time-period. This is something I used to do all the time on my old blog and I figured I’d give it a whirl again. So, here we go!

  • Hosted some friends in our home during a hurricane in Florida.
  • Enjoyed my daughter starting her first musical instrument, the trombone.
  • Several cub scout fishing and camping events. Bradley even cut his thumb open during one of them and had to be rushed to the emergency room for stitches.
  • Started a new job at Credit Karma as a Senior Engineering Manager and traveled to San Francisco several times.
  • Another fun halloween with my little ones.
  • More cub scout camping.
  • Glass tile making with my colleagues at CK.
  • Celebrated a Portillo’s Thanksgiving in North Carolina.
  • Attended my first school music recital for my daughter.
  • Santa brought a huge trampoline for the kids this year.
  • Road trip to Michigan to see my family and friends. It’s been a few years since the whole family had been back. We also took a side trip to Chicago to see friends as well before driving back home. Lots of museums and fun times were had.
  • Cub scout sleep over in a Virginia museum.
  • Cub scout pinewood derby! Two trophies were had by the boys.
  • My daughter attended her first dance in middle school.
  • Many fires in our backyard in the cool North Carolina spring.
  • Celebrated the 8th, 10th, and 12th birthdays for my children.
  • Built and planted a raised garden bed.
  • Pandemic starts 😞
  • Added a new Corgi puppy to our family.
  • Lots of swimming in our community pool with the family.
  • Began our first school year all virtual. We’re teaching our kids at home this first semester.
  • 46th Birthday!

Not too shabby, but you can tell the number of things that we’ve done since the pandemic is far shorter than the things before it. I can’t wait to get back to our old normal, or some semblance of it.

During the last year, I’ve also accomplished a few writing goals.

  • Finished my first book including many many rounds of self-editing, critique partners, beta readers, and editors. I have one final beta reader pass that I’m waiting on and it’ll be done done.
  • Finished my second book including the same numerous self-editing rounds, beta, and editors. Also waiting on a beta readers feedback before another round of edits.
  • Finished writing a reader magnet novella, self-edited, beta readers, and editors.
  • Wrote most of my third book, but I’m still working on it.
  • Outlining my fourth book.
  • Working with my first cover designer to create 4 covers.
  • Rebuilt this website preparing for my book launches.
  • Took countless online classes on creative writing, self-publishing, editing, and marketing to prepare for my book launches.

Not too shabby considering we’ve been in a pandemic, but like I said earlier, I’ve been bored with media so this has been a blessing for me.

While this past year has been far from perfect, I didn’t use it as an excuse to lose sight of my goals. I may have pushed them out some, and reset others, but I haven’t given up. As I said earlier, there are so many things I want to do still. A few goals I have for this next year (that I’ll look back on next year.)

  • Self-publish my 4 new books and at least 2 more after that in the series.
  • Start writing a new series, but unsure if I’ll release it yet.
  • Take a much needed, or two, family vacations to some interesting places. Let’s hope this pandemic ends, or we get some treatments.
  • Get our kids back to school with the friends and teachers.
  • Bike in a long ride with my wife. 50km, 100km, or greater.
  • Keep working out and getting into shape again.

There we have it. I’m trying to keep it reasonable and as realistic as I can, given the circumstances we’re all in. Like I said earlier, don’t lose sight of your dreams. You might find it difficult or more challenging chipping away at them, but don’t give up.

Life is too short to give up on the things that motivate and inspire us.

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