New Year, (Re)New(ed) Endeavors

So it’s February and motivation for accomplishing my goals for 2019 is still high… I’ve practiced daily yoga and meditation since January 1st; I’ve been trying to eat better, though I’m not really dieting; I read the complete short stories of Ernest Hemingway in January and have started reading select Beat authors, three books by Kerouac being next on my list; and I’ve been working out 3-5 times per week for several months without fail. I even added to my home gym with the purchase of a Concept 2 rower; so that covers the “swole” part of my goals.

“Here are my goals for 2019… eat better, sleep more, read more, get swole. Let’s see how this pans out in a year. (I’m already an hour past my bedtime.)”

11:04 PM – 10 Jan 2019 – via Twitter

I do need to start spending more time focusing on quality sleep though. I should probably try to treat sleep just like a workout or how I’m practicing daily yoga and meditation—adding it to my daily scheduled routine. Sleep is tough because of teaching. When I get home from the University, I’m tired and haven’t really unwound. So it takes me another 30-45 minutes before I can go to bed and fall asleep. That means I’m not getting to sleep until at least 11 or 11:30 in the late evening two nights a week.

Last December I started taking guitar lessons. It’s been pretty good so far. I’ve learned a lot and I’m augmenting my guitar lessons with online music theory classes I purchased from Udemy. I’ve always wanted to play guitar, but never made time for it. Now, I’m making the time and putting in the effort. I think I’ve had about eight lessons so far and I can already play several songs and I’m just now starting with chords. In middle December, I’ll decide if I’m going to stick with it.

I also want to continue traveling and even added a travel section to my blog. I have a trip to Guatemala coming up, over spring break. I’m pretty excited about it. That’s about it; I’ll post something in a couple months or if my daily yoga and meditation streak comes to an end. My last streak was just shy of six months. Let’s see how far I can go with this one…

 

End of Twenty Eighteen

This will be my last post of twenty eighteen. I didn’t initially think that I had a lot to post about; but, after reflection, this year has been fairly busy. I taught two classes in the spring and another two in the fall; I visited Sweden and Denmark in late spring; read about seventeen or so books; and changed jobs, moving from Ellucian over to the Qurate Group. Oh, and I finally started to take guitar lessons! Learning to play the guitar has been a goal for quite some time.

One event that has been in my mind a lot over the past year was my estranged father passing away on October twenty-second of last year. He and I had been estranged for a very long time, approximately twenty-nine years. During that time, I only visited with him four times: once in the late eighties, once in the early nineties, and twice a few years before his death. He seemed a very strange man to me and his motivations were base from my perspective. I guess most of my thoughts surrounding my father’s passing have something to do with second guessing if I should have allowed the estrangement to continue as long as it did. It isn’t really regret, it’s something else—undefinable really.

I have a few ideas of what I want twenty nineteen to look like and some plans are already taking shape. I’ll be teaching a lot in the coming spring semester; that’s for certain. Other plans are more fluid, so I’ll comment on them at a later time. That’s about all I have to write about. I wish whoever is reading this a happy and safe Christmas and New Year’s.

It’s Fall and I’m Happy

It is near fall again. I can always tell, at least around here, by the shorter days, the mist hovering around the trees during the early morning commutes into work, and the yellow school buses that pepper my same commute to and from work. Fall is my favorite season, if there can be such a thing. I like it because it’s still warm enough to do stuff outside, but cool enough to start layering clothes. Fall is also my favorite motorcycling season. It isn’t too hot and there isn’t as much rain as there is in the springtime.

This particular fall, I’ve made a lot of changes. I changed jobs, moving from Ellucian as a full stack developer to QVC as a front end developer. I was ready for a change and the opportunity presented itself; so I jumped. Also, I took on an additional class this semester of teaching at Jefferson University. I agreed to teach an undergraduate technical course in addition to my regular graduate technical course that’s part of the UX track. I’d never taught an undergraduate course before. I was a little leery of teaching undergrads, mostly because I was worried about the maturity level of the students. The major differences, so far, are the frequency of communication and level of engagement. Graduate students seem more plugged in and business-like, where undergraduates are more chill and communicate less. This doesn’t mean the undergrads are not good students; far from it, they are hardworking and do what is required. I’m sure I’ll have more to add to this by the semester’s end in December, but this is my initial impression when the two classes are juxtaposed.

That’s about all I have for now. I don’t plan on writing with too much frequency, but it’s been a while. So I thought I’d post an update, but I’m not even sure if anyone reads these anyway.