As many of you know I have just published my ebook about Twitter and continue to add to it daily. I talk a lot about connections and giving value. So I came up with an idea this morning to try and offer both to my Twitter colleagues. I posted a tweet that read: “What type of person are you looking to connect with on Twitter?” The idea is that for the people who responded I could try and hook them up through our other followers. So @TwinkieMommie responded with “Other Moms/Dad’s of twins.” I sent out her request which got a response from @Sundi_MOZ: “Me! B/B 8 yrs old!” Connection made. To help demonstrate how valuable Twitter can be and to try and promote people connecting with each other, I have decided to make this “Connection Week” on Twitter. So, from Monday, July12th through Friday, July 16th if you tell me on Twitter (@KidsAreHeroes) what type of person you are trying to connect with, I will try and tweet about it. Use the #connectionweek hash tag, and please give us a follow if you have a mind to. (I like to connect too ya know.) If I get too many requests or if any are of a spammy nature I may not be able to get to them all, but feel free to leave a comment here as to what type of person you are trying to connect with for the other readers of this blog.
Also, if through the #connectionweek process you do get connected, please tweet the persons’ id(s) you connected with using the same hashtag. (i.e. @KIdsAreHeroes I connected with @JohnHaydon and @DCPhotog #connectionweek) I’ll tweet that too.
I was startled suddenly at 12:15 this morning to the sound of our security system. Now normally when this happens it’s because one of our three Bernese Mountain dogs needs to go outside in the middle of the night and one of us forgets to turn off the alarm. This situation was different, however. My whole family was accounted for upstairs. For some reason I was still not phased, because I found it difficult to believe that someone would break in when we have three huge dogs inside. If there was someone there they were probably scared off by the alarm anyway. The security company called. “Our system says that your kitchen door was tripped. Do you need the police?” At this point I was still trying to get my bearings. To be sure I asked them to come.
I went downstairs to find our newest rescue Pablo panting frantically by the kitchen door. Had he seen something? No, I thought. This is just the result of him being scared to death of thunderstorms. It was extremely windy at this point and thunder was clapping as if someone up there had just brought the house down. We discovered Pablo’s neurosis for thunderstorms the last time one happened. In the interim we had purchased a Bach Flower remedy for him (yes they have holistic soothers for dogs). Apparently my wife had given him a dose before bed. It definitely wasn’t working.
Pablo is five years old.
The police came and asked me why I didn’t just tell the security company it was a mistake. I told him I just wanted to make sure so he politely checked out our back yard. Since I found Pablo by the same door that was tripped, I just imagined he tried to do something to get out in a fit of hysteria, so he must have been the culprit. Poor guy.
So at this point it’s 12:45 AM and we have a frantic dog on our hands. ”More Bach Flower remedy!”, we thought. Too bad he was so beside himself he would not take in any food. Unfortunately there is no simple solution to this. We put him in his crate before the police came just in case they wanted to come inside. He has somehow learned that if he rams his head hard enough against the door of the cage, he can bend the frame and get out. How about the garage? Michelle said no as there is “too much stuff he can get into”. I was slowly realizing what must be done. “You guys go to bed and I’ll handle it.” So I took Pablo in the master bedroom alone (I also brought in Lily our #2 Berner hoping that would comfort him) and tried locking him in the bathroom. I was pretty sure that wasn’t going to work, as I could still hear the panting through the door. And besides, he was panting not for the fun of it, he was scared half to death. Poor guy. After a few head butts at the door (I bet if I let him go at it he would have broken the door down) I let him back in and turned on the TV. He immediately jumped up on the bed and sat on my leg. He had to be close to me. I was afraid I had the TV up too loud as it had to be raised so I could hear it over his panting. He was breathing so hard and fast that I felt I had just put a quarter in one of those old vibrating hotel beds. (I know. Sadly most of you are too young to get that reference.)
So this would finally give me a chance to watch the Jimmy Fallon show. I am never up this late any more. Sadly I was a bit disappointed as it was just plain boring. That is except for when the animal guy took a live badger and pretended to have it attack Jimmy’s face. His expression and reaction were just too funny. I spend the next hour or so flipping channels and waiting for the storm to die down. Eventually it did and we all drifted off to sleep.
So this morning I put an ad on Craigslist: “Lovable, well adjusted, laid back dog needs a good home…” No I didn’t. We all love that dog. He sure keeps it interesting around here.
"They FINALLY let me drive!!"
This past week we have been on vacation in the Outer Banks, NC. We have enjoyed spotty weather but enough sun to take in tennis, the pool, jet skiing, the beach and much more. Of all these adventures to choose from I am sure you are wondering why the subject of this post is a belly flop. That reason will appear self-evident shortly I hope.
My darling daughter MaryMargaret, who is now 10, is with us of course. She absolutely loves the pool. We had to get a rental home that was equipped with one and would also tolerate our two Bernese Moutain dogs. If she had her way we would be in the pool the whole time. The other day she was challenging me to give her new ways of jumping in the pool. After exhausting the usual selections, I suggested a belly flop. She reluctantly agreed but was very hesitant. She tried it several times but at the last moment would pull her arms in and protect herself. “No problem”, we said, “you don’t have to do it.”
The weather yesterday was glorious – we packed so much activity into one day. In the heat of the afternoon we all got in the pool. Someone suggested I do a belly flop. I said, “No way!” But then I thought to myself – if I can ask my daughter to do it then I should be willing to do it myself. Nonetheless if I’m going to do this I need to at least put a T-shirt on. I stood before the water and pondered what I got myself into. After all, it had been at least 40 years since I performed this silly feat. But, there was no turning back now so off I went. OUCH!! I have a much bigger frame than I did when I was young which didn’t help matters any. MaryMargaret had many questions for me: “How bad did it hurt?” “How long did the hurt last?” She then said, “Ok I’m going to do one now.” We told her she didn’t have to, but her response was “I want to prove to my daddy that I can do it!” Off she went and did a perfect belly flop.
It may seem silly but I was so proud of her. She faced her fear through sheer determination and got through it. Challenging yourself to face fears and carry out tasks that you never thought you were capable of is how human greatness is achieved. Now does she deserve some sort of award for performing a belly flop? Of course not but I hope and trust that she learned an important lesson from this.
Well not right away, but we are going on vacation at the end of the month. WOO HOO! Haven’t been to the Outer Banks in quite a while, so we are all very much looking forward to it. The picture of my wife and daughter seen here was taken 10 years ago when MaryMargaret got to see the beach for the first time. I happened to come across it yesterday and thought I’d share it. Fun times!!
So, isn’t it time to start thinking about summer vacations?? Where are you planning to go?
This is Frederick’s real first taste of snow this year. As you can see MaryMargaret is very excited about it!!
Some pictures just say it all. I think this one is one of them. It was taken several years ago when MaryMargaret was about three years old. I don’t even know who the boy is. Makes you wonder what’s going on in their little heads.
I wish I was up a little earlier for this one – the fog always shows a neat effect.
One morning last week when we got up we just had to go outside and take these pictures. The sunrise was SO spectacular.
This helps to remind me about what is important in life.
As I mentioned in the About area, I am relatively new to this social networking and blogging concept. Although I have been in technology and software development for over twenty years, I am usually the last to “catch on” to things that are useful. Even my nine year old daughter has a blog. Anyway, I have been thinking about starting one and just seeing how it goes. I hope to gain some more exposure for the “stuff I care about”, such as will be explained in later posts. Living in the Frederick, MD area (and absolutely LOVING it), I plan to focus primarily on things that affect the Frederick community.