It’s been an interesting year for me; that goes without saying. It’s probably been an interesting year for everyone. All of us have these things we go through, both good and bad, but bad things are always easier to remember for some reason. I think that’s why the Star Wars movies are so popular, because there’s no gray area between the dark side and the force in those movies.
I made the short video below to talk about this, and I’m making this particular post short so those of you here in the states can get back to your Thanksgiving meal, your family, and all those other things that make the day special for you. For those of you in other countries… well, I hope you find things to be thankful for as well.
Wow, what an interesting calendar year. How things have changed or gone from Thanksgiving last year until now. I’m not only talking about this blog, but my life in general. For this blog, I wrote last year and put up an image of myself with a friend, and then had to tell people that wasn’t my wife; won’t make that mistake this year. lol
This is my wife and I
I’m finding myself wondering if there’s much to be thankful for this year. My grandmother first got hurt, and then passed away. I had to take a guy to small claims court, though I won. I worked on another project that took me more than 4 months to be paid for. The really big projects didn’t come through.
Had my first (last?) colonoscopy and then had a second one on the same day. I had to change diabetes doctors after 11 years. I had a few friends pass away that I wasn’t expecting it to happen to. The local symphony shut down, as well as a few of my favorite restaurants.
I had some issues with affiliates including one, Finish Line that not only didn’t pay me but then decided to drop me and threatened me while they were at it. And this year, for Thanksgiving, my mother is with her friend, my wife is with her friend, and I’m home by myself (at least for now).
Overall, it seems like it was a pretty hard year to deal with. Things to be thankful for? As I sit here trying to think of things there’s not all that much that comes up. However, one of the blessings of blogging is that you sometimes chronicle things that have happened that actually turned out to be a good thing. So let’s see…
I actually began the year by not only getting my first gig just days after the new year began, but I was named at a Fabulous 50 top blogger on the same day. Thanks Bev!
I created two new blogs this year. One is my Syracuse and central New York area blog called Syracuse Wiki. The other is my second business blog on SEO and social media for businesses called SEOX Blog. Both have done relatively well, even if they don’t get tons of comments.
I got to do some live presentations this year. I gave two presentations at a local library, one at a large conference, and one to my consulting group. I might be forgetting something but I’m not sure. I also got to be interviewed on a couple of podcasts and was in Bev Mahone’s real radio program one day this year.
I reached my 1,000th post on this blog and I started creating videos as well. According to YouTube I’m not breaking any records, but at least I’m producing something different.
We finally got Osaba bin Laden, and many other countries are seeing major changes as the people have realized just what kind of power they have… as long as the leaders of those countries decide not to just kill everyone that misbehaves, which also happened a couple of times.
I went to my first karaoke club this year and found it fascinating, although I doubt I’ll go again. I also got to go to Las Vegas for a conference and got a much different experience out of it than the first two times.
My online income started to increase drastically, not quite to the level I’d been hoping for but higher than any other year; that is, until this last Panda update, but even with that I’m going to have my best year ever.
I got personally reacquainted with old friends this year, going first to a reunion at my college, then to a memorial get-together for my friend that recently passed.
I also celebrated my 10th year in business this year; I never really thought I’d make it this long but now that I have I guess I should really learn how to do it better, eh? lol And I’m about to hit post #900 on my business blog, which is almost a shame for as long as I’ve had it compared to this one but hey, a milestone is a milestone.
If I have to be truthful, I’ve met a lot of new and wonderful people this year, both online and off. Even though it was under horrible circumstances I got to meet and get to know my grandmother’s brother, Uncle Bill. I’ve connected with relatives and old friends I never thought I would ever have the opportunity to interact with again via Facebook, so I’m not hating on that.
And finally, even though I continue to battle with diabetes and being tired all the time and vision and occasional short periods of depression and a few other things I won’t mention, when all is said and done I’m relatively healthy, still go to the gym on occasion, still get to go where I want when I want, and still have a lot of people that talk to me via social media, networking events, and just events in general; I even went to some parties this year (actually ate outside once this year at all; that’s Josh’s fault).
All that and the continuing visits from friends both old and new on this blog and my other blogs. I mean, weighted properly, I’d have to say that other than my grandmother not being with us anymore the year has actually given me a lot to be thankful for. With that, I thank all of you for putting up with me, I thank my wife and my mother (both of whom will never read any of this stuff) for hanging in there, and I guess I’ll thank me for not just quitting and going off into the wild blue yonder, however that would have manifested itself (nothing like suicide so don’t go there, but who hasn’t ever had a day when they just wanted to give it all up and go lay in bed forever?).
Thank you all, and have a wonderful Thanksgiving (and if you’re not from this country, I’ll just ask you to take some time and think about what you might be thankful for on this day as well). And just to see who actually reads all of this to the end, click on this link and mention what it is because I’m posting it just for you. 😉
We’re getting into what’s known as the holiday season, at least in the U.S. This weekend, as a matter of fact, is Columbus Day weekend, and banks are closed, as well as no mail delivery, on Monday. Yeah, we still give Columbus credit for discovering a country that was already thriving; so be it.
When I was a kid, I loved all holidays; I think most kids do. As I got older, I stopped liking every holiday except Thanksgiving. That was when Mom pulled out the stops when it pertained to food. She’d make the large turkey with homemade cornbread dressing, giblet gravy, mashed potatoes, yams, peas (okay, I didn’t like this part, but it was part of the bargain) and of course the hot rolls. Then later on we’d have our choice of either homemade sweet potato pie or strawberry cake; yeah, I hate strawberries, but there was something about Mom’s number one homemade dessert that overruled it all.
Since Dad passed Mom has stopped cooking, and thus the day isn’t any different than any other time I visit her. So, it’s now swinging around to Christmas, where I love seeing the faces of people when they get gifts from me, and I’m starting to enjoy once more receiving gifts from others; I hadn’t enjoyed that since I was 13, and I’m not sure why. Christmas was also my dad’s favorite holiday; I don’t think Mom ever had a favorite holiday, and that puts her with my wife.
So there’s the question; what’s your favorite holiday, no matter where you live?
As a kid, I used to enjoy holidays mainly because it meant we had days off from school. By the age of 13, there was only one holiday that I actually cared about anymore.
That holiday was Thanksgiving. I cared about it even more than Christmas because it was the only time of the year that my mother would make her cornbread dressing. Actually, as a kid, it was also the only time of the year we would have turkey, but turkey didn’t mean as much without the dressing.
Why not Christmas? Sure, on Christmas you get all sorts of gifts, but when you think about it, you’re always getting gifts. You get gifts for your birthday. And, being an only child, your parents are always giving you stuff here and there. Actually, I think most kids probably get gifts, or other things during the year, and don’t think about it as anything special. I have always thought that the stuff I got was pretty special because I figured my parents didn’t ever really have to give me anything. So, Christmas was never really anything all that special; and no, I’m not religious either.
So, it was always Thanksgiving for me. The family would get together, and, odd enough, it was often the only meal of the year that all of us would sit at the same table for dinner. How strange is that? All of us have always had our own TV’s, and most of the time we watched different shows, so we rarely shared meals with each other either.
The last Thanksgiving all of us shared with each other, my dad knew he was really sick and probably wouldn’t make another one. It was my dad, mother, grandmother, wife, and myself. I wasn’t feeling all that thankful because I felt like I knew what was coming also; lung cancer, diabetes and renal failure doesn’t give one many chances for a full recovery. My mother really went all out for the meal, and for one day, Dad didn’t worry about sticking to this strict died they’d put him on. We had a blast on that day, and forgot everything for a few hours.
After that, things were never the same. I brought my mother and grandmother to my house a couple of years. Mom made her dressing only one more time. One of those years, Mom went on a trip out of town with some group, and my grandmother stayed with us, but we didn’t do anything overly special.
Now, Thanksgiving doesn’t mean as much to me anymore, and, since it was the last holiday I cared about, it means that I have no more holidays that I care about at all. I see it as a special day whenever I see my mother or grandmother, which means I don’t need one day to call a special day. Mom has stated she’s never making the cornbread dressing again, so I’ll never have that in my life again, as I never learned how to make it.
Last year we had food from Cracker Barrel, which was okay. This year we had food from Boston Market, much tastier. It’s easy food to eat and heat up, and it seems that’s the way we’ll be going from this point on. The day either my mother or grandmother aren’t here anymore, if they go before me (and that’s not guaranteed), nothing else will change because my wife and I know we can get food elsewhere, since we don’t know how to cook a real Thanksgiving meal either.
What we will miss is the opportunity to sit and have a meal with Mom or my grandmother; that will be sad for sure. But it won’t have to be Thanksgiving anymore.
So, I’m thankful for every day from this point on; but Thanksgiving itself… I wish everyone else a happy one, and of course I wish happiness on you every other day of the year also.