A Weekend in the Office

I spent much of the weekend in the office watching a multi-hour webinar on Planning for the Taxable Estate. Around watching, and as an excuse to get up and stretch my legs, I thoroughly cleaned up the books and files around my office. The furniture stayed put.

I’ve always liked to use the end of the year to organize various parts of my life – both physical and digital. And as we near 1/1/2013, it’s time again to put away the 2012 stuff and make room for the new. Especially with our baby son coming oh-so-soon, I am guessing that I will have to be more efficient than ever at keeping my stuff in order because his stuff will soon displace my stuff in the hierarchy of which stuff I most care about!

The week ahead is going to continue to be busy, as we have three Christmas parties to attend – MFDA, RJFH, and CRB. It will be fun, and I am looking forward to a healthy dose of Christmas cheer to go with the fresh blanket of snow covering the white Christmas lights lining our fence.

The snow also marks the true start of winter, and my 6am-obligation to keep the steep and curving parts of the driveway safe for passing. It’s not all bad, as it’s forced near-daily exercise.

Have a tremendous week, and don’t be too busy to enjoy a Christmas song from time to time.

First November Weekend

It’s the first weekend of November, and we will remember not to rake before this time next year! Any earlier work is undone by wind and rain. With that said, we made a lot of headway on the backyard and front yard around the house. It looks great. Here is a picture of our progress early in the day.

Amidst the yard work, we did have some fun. We ran errands Saturday afternoon, and then went over to the Rogers Basecamp for pot roast, potatoes, and carrots. We brought a variety of pie flavors from the G.T. Pie Co. After dinner, we played Scrabble, which moved surprisingly quickly. Perhaps, now that we’re all adults, the words come more quickly! I was especially proud of my use of the word, “FARTED.”

As a general observation, I am starting to enjoy the chores I disliked as a child. I was not a big fan of raking or running errands, but look forward to doing both now. Weird.

Sunday morning, Lindsey and I had a hearty eggs and sausage breakfast and then made it to the Well (the early church service). Apparently, it is All Saints Day. Remembering the deceased made for a heavy, but rewarding service. The music was excellent, and the service finished with “When the Saints Come Marching In.”

We’re off to the Chicken Coop for a fried turkey (the whole thing!) dinner and fixings. We’re tasked with bringing a healthy dessert, as if there is such a thing.

Have a great week ahead and enjoy being in the present with the experiences and people that surround you each day. That will be my focus. And, by the way, it is okay to start listening to Christmas music!

Weekend of Leaves and Golf

I find it funny how my plans for a Saturday never play out as I write them down. This Saturday, I was going to sort some paper, play nine holes of golf, rake, and do some work. Instead, I ended up raking for three hours, going on a hike at Misty Acres down near Frankfort, MI with dad and Katy, and then raking some more.

After we cleaned the leaves off of the entire driveway, Lindsey and I went to the Old Mission Tavern for a nice meal. We tried to use a 50% off your second dinner coupon, but the (excellent) waitress informed us it wasn’t good until November. Woops! The bread and salads were excellent, regardless. Lindsey wasn’t crazy about her prime rib, but I liked my parmesan-crusted whitefish. What made the evening, however, was running in to my golf coach from the University of Michigan, Jim Carras. I had not seen him since 2002 or 2003, when I was a Junior in college. He was up with friends visiting the area.

Sunday morning was spent eating pancakes and trimming some pine trees on the south side of the driveway. I am bushwacking all throughout the developed areas of our property in an effort to recover some of what I perceive to be areas and views lost to overgrowth permitted by prior owners.

I played in the Big Hole Golf Event at the Grand Traverse Resort on Sunday afternoon with Ben Orr and Chris Day. This is an event where they cut 10 inch (instead of 4.25 inch) holes in all of the greens. It was fun, but we still couldn’t make a putt!

The Tigers completed getting swept for the second time in the World Series. Not sure what the problem is there. Would have been fun to see them win, but I’m not a huge baseball fan. Lions won. Woop-de-do. Until next weekend, have a good week.

The Daily: Weekend 2

Another week of firsts in home ownership for us. This week we got the water softener up and running, which was as easy as adding salt to the bin. Now, in addition to shuffling 50-pound bags of sand and salt around the long driveway, I get to lug 40-pound bags of high-quality 98.5 percent pure salt cubes through the living-room to the basement. Fortunately, I’ll only have to do this every one-and-a-half years.

I finished John Grisham’s, The Litigators last night and found it to be better than his recent books. It was entertaining from start to end, as it depicts the evolution of its protagonist attorney David Zinc from “big law” grunt to small firm hero. Unlike some of Grisham’s early books, like the The Firm, there is less emphasis on physical chase and more legal and/or courtroom drama. I recommend the book.

More from the Grisham front, the TV show The Firm premiers tonight (Sunday) at 9PM on NBC. We’ll see if it’s a worthwhile watch.

It looks like a beautiful and sunny Sunday, which means I should run to work before I start chasing the dog and setting up the fire pit. Have a great week and you’ll hear from us soon enough!