Monday, October 23, 2023

Miscellaneous Monday


Image courtesy of on X.


After about six years of Dallas Stars fandom, my team is finally good enough to garner the attention of the greater hockey media from across the country. That is to say, my boys in Victory Green get mentioned more often in the articles I read and the podcasts I hear these days.

DD and I attended the Dallas Stars' home opener and it was great to be back in the American Airlines Center. It's a really lovely building on the outside and I'm rather partial to the inside when it's set up for hockey games. :0)

And although we won (in overtime), the game itself was mostly "meh" to me. We were missing our top-line center and it was noticeable. But, as I said, we they pulled out the win, and at the end of the day, no one remembers how it happened.

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Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki

The last non-fiction book I completed was Rich Dad, Poor Dad and it was super interesting. The gist is that the educational system doesn't teach our children how to be entrepreneurs, it teaches them how to be employees. And while we need employees...we also need folks who can HIRE those employees. And as I've learned over the last twenty years of small-business ownership--it's not for everyone. But there are also other ways to be financially free.

Two big take-aways for me from this book are:

1) Your house is not an asset. If it costs you any kind of money, it's not an asset. Now, a house is a better use of your money than living in an apartment, but it's still not an asset unless you're renting it out and it's making money for you.

2) Being wealthy and being rich are two different things (according to Robert). Wealthy means being able to pay your monthly expenses with passive income from your assets & investments. Rich people are the Warren Buffets and Donald Trumps of the world. I like that distinction because one of those is way more attainable for me.

As I mentioned in my last post about my progress in reading non-fiction, reading this book suggested the next non-fiction book, and I finally started reading it. (Had to take a break from the educational reading and do some reading for pleasure.) There's also another book I bought earlier this year and never read, so I should probably read that one of these days. :0) Where that fits into the grand scheme of books to read, I have no idea.

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Re-imagining the Vision Board for 2023

I need to re-do the vision board for Q4 of 2023... I've made strides toward the goals that were pictured, but it became clear to me as September rolled along that I had a disconnect between the various action tracks I was on. I had to take some time to re-assess the three tracks and align them so that all my efforts were working toward the same goal.

It's not that I don't want to reach all the goals, but I realized that some were stepping stones to others so instead trying to do "all" of them, I need to focus on the nearest stepping stone so as to make the most progress in the most direct and efficient fashion.

I'm talking about finances and debt here. I won't go into too much detail, but trying to save a nest egg is great, but paying off debt and eliminating finance charges and interest fees is a more lucrative short-term goal. So, yeah, alignment and streamlining.

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Image courtesy of NBC.

DD and I have been working our way through this medical drama. It had been an enjoyable breath of fresh air with the main character, the medical director of a large public hospital, making changes to policies and procedures for the good of the patients. Things we have all probably all questioned at some point or other.

It was going great until we reached season two. AKA the COVID season. I don't watch a wide swath of television, so I don't know this to be true, but I imagine most shows addressed it some way, some how.

Medical shows probably had to address the pandemic seeing as how they're medical shows. I've watched Grey's Anatomy for years (in real time) and they definitely did.

Watching the pandemic play out in delayed real time was understandable although I wasn't a fan. I wanted to escape the reality of COVID, but, again, I understand why medical dramas included that reality.

It's definitely different / interesting to watch a show that addresses a real time world event like the pandemic after the event has passed. Especially something like a pandemic where the virus itself morphed and changed at a fast pace and the medical and scientific communities were learning on the go.

We know so much more now, of course, good and bad / true and untrue, with the benefit of hindsight and the continued analysis of the chain of events and the data. Almost everyone (from news, to governments, to entertainment) jumped on the various band wagons and people were "labeled" if they disagreed with anything. (What happened to free speech and respectful discourse??) And now we're learning that maybe some of the people who had qualms about various policies maybe weren't so heretical after all...

The show also jumped on other various band wagons which while topical at the time, don't always have great results as time passes. I get that it's a tough challenge & balance for show runners, but it's all a bit uncomfortable to watch, to be honest.

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Image courtesy Julie Murphy's website.

In addition to plugging through "New Amsterdam," (week nights are hit or miss depending on how either of us feels by the time DD gets home), I've re-watched a couple of favorite films in the last couple of weeks.

I was scrolling through Netflix one day and saw "The Imitation Game" starring Benedict Cumberbatch. You all know of my love for Mr. Cumberbatch and so I spent a couple of hours once again enjoying his performance as the pioneer of computer science, Alan Turing--aka the man primarily responsible for breaking the Enigma code.

I never ceased to be moved by this film, especially the tragedy of Turing's death.


On the complete opposite spectrum of tones of movies, I also re-watched "Dumplin'," a coming-of-age movie (based on a book) about an overweight young woman who finds peace with and acceptance from her (former) beauty queen mother as well making some new friends along her journey--including the hot new boy at school with whom she also works.

The film's soundtrack is all Dolly Parton, whose humor and wisdom underpins the plot. It's a fun, sweet, uplifting movie, and you just can't help but smile through the last twenty or so minutes.

Before writing this up, I didn't realize the movie was based on a book, but it is. So what did I do? Looked to see if it was available in the online library--which it was--so I promptly borrowed it. And while doing that, discovered that there are two sequels which I will also borrow in due course. :0)

It turns out that the book doesn't have nearly so much Dolly in it and less of a few other things I found very fun and enjoyable about the movie. Usually I'm more disappointed in the movie than the book, but in this case, I like the movie more.

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And that's all I've got for you, dear followers. Hope all is well in your neck of the woods.

Take care. See you in a couple of weeks.


Monday, October 9, 2023

Third Quarter Review


Image courtesy IMGBIN.

Hey there! Hope you're well. As you can probably tell--blog post title anyone? lol--it's time for my quarterly check-in.

The third quarter was a bit rough for several weeks as the anniversary of Mom's death in August hit me a little harder than I expected--which is to say I didn't expect it to hit me hard at all. Add to that the triple digit temperatures we'd been dealing with for weeks and weeks (and weeks) on end as well as "the turn" I mentioned in my last post.

So all that to say that I probably didn't do very well with my goals since the whole year hasn't really gone the way I anticipated. So, without further ado, let's dive in.

1) Send a postcard to my Grandma in Denmark monthly: I've been keeping up with this. August was Grandma's birthday and she got her usual flower delivery along with a letter.

2) Finish & publish Finders Keepers: not done; not gonna get done although I do want to finish it some day. Whether that actually comes to pass is hard to say. Just want to be realistic...

3) Exercise minimum 3X per week: I fell of that wagon. Grief and heat took its toll. I need to get back to doing my Hinge Health exercises if nothing else.

4) Read 52 books, including 6 non-fiction: I've read 49 books this year so far, ten ahead of schedule according to Goodreads. Six non-fiction books done and dusted. I've read seven so far, with one more waiting in my Kindle. One book tends to lead to the next, so I imagine another one or two will appear before the year is over.

5) Keep up my writers group duties on a weekly basis: I'm caught up as of this post but I wasn't very diligent about keeping up weekly. Mostly monthly, but summer is slow... And maybe I need to take a lesson from my history and reassess my plans going forward.

6) Add one non-hockey pattern per quarter to Etsy shop: Didn't happen. My plan became to have my own store and leave minimal patterns on Etsy, but due to a factor beyond my control, that project is currently stalled.

7) Self care: working on it. Sorta. I think. I think I need to do better.

8) Complete a home improvement project or two: Didn't happen; isn't gonna happen.

9) Read / listen to / watch my writers education items: Didn't happen; isn't gonna happen.

10) Continue to cook /eat healthy / adhere to a food plan: let's just say...I could be doing much better.

11) Stay on track with / up my game with the housekeeping: fell off the wagon here, but trying--albeit not very hard--to hop back on.

12) Keep blogging: I addressed that a couple of weeks ago. :0)

13) Write articles for my writers group newsletter: fell off the wagon here too and with everything else going on in my brain, I just haven't had a whole lot of inspiration. I have an article in progress, but it definitely needs some adjustments.

14) Finally study the Personality Strengths in depth: you know it's been three years and I'm pretty sure this isn't going to happen this year...

15) Get through the Bible in one year: totally on track here. And I've already decided that next year I want to go through the Bible in chronological order.

16) Keep up with / solidify my Goodreads habit: did pretty good until a month or two ago and other than tracking my book reading challenge, I couldn't care less about it any longer. So...we're done with that.

I've given myself grades in the past, but that's not where I'm at right now. Life has reached a crossroads and some of these goals no longer serve me. And that's fine. That's life, right? As the fourth quarter progresses and I assess where I am and where I want to go, I imagine that many of next year's goals are going to have a different look and feel to them.

I hope you're all well dear followers.

See you in a couple of weeks.