Hi gang!

I thought I would post a little update to let you know what’s been going on ‘round these parts. Been a little busy…

October was packed, man!

My wife and I celebrated our 3rd anniversary by taking a short overnight trip to Chicago, keeping our apparent streak of celebrating our wedding out of town to 4 years in a row (if you count our Hawaiian honeymoon). Our attitude about it right now is, “Hey, when we have kids, we’ll more than likely be celebrating at home, so might as well do it now!”

In Chicago, we were able to do some tourist-y stuff (visiting the Bean, anyone?), but we also were able to go to the Museum of Science and Industry to see the opening of the Walt Disney Archives – which was awesome. We spent the next day at the Shedd Aquarium, which was a lot of fun as well.

Between weddings and other such related events (in which my wife was matron of honor), October just kept kicking.

It didn’t help that I kept adding to the list…

The Dawn of the House Husband

Yeah, I’ve always done this kinda stuff anyway, but I’m really starting to revel in my role as House Husband around here.

Work has skewed a little light which leaves me open to work on home projects, and I’ve stepped up to the plate with the biggest bat I’ve got in my hands.

We found ourselves with bushels and bushels of fresh fall apples, so I’ve spent hours turning them into various apple-related goodies, including a whopping apple fillings for 18 future pies, two batches of dehydrated apples for the pantry, and the rest are sliced, peeled and in the freezer for future projects.

Along with that, I’ve whipped up some puff pastry hot pockets, homemade granola, some delicious homemade beer (and ready to brew another batch this week), and other great projects.

Building New Habits – and Eliminating Others

Using Jerry Seinfeld’s calendar trick and focusing on one habit per month, I’m starting to get a little control over my behavior.

In October, I’ve been using a calendar to break a bad habit (a personal one that won’t be shared here), and it’s cut my habit from 5-6 times a week down to about 4 times this entire month. It’s not perfect, but I’m reaping major benefits from it and building momentum to hopefully eliminating it entirely.

Next month, I’ll be using the calendar trick to knock out 29 days in a row of playing and practicing guitar, hopefully to build this into a more regular and prioritized habit.

I’ve also been switching from more freewriting to more fiction writing to try to develop and grow my writing habit. My morning routine – before any work is done or email is checked – is now the following:

  • Read some of a book at breakfast (1 hour at the table)
  • Complete a writing prompt
  • Meditate for 10 minutes
  • Write an entry in my journal

That’s great stuff. Those are all voluntary things that I really want to do, and keeping my book of prompts and journal in front of my face on my desk has really helped. Hoping all of these developments work in helping me improve productivity and become a little more prolific.

New Project Trying to Gain Steam

Over on Facebook, I’ve been building a new brand called Chisel Magazine – a men’s magazine devoted to helping men make realistic, tangible improvements in their lives.

Currently at over 1000 fans, I’m really pleased with the growth. Engagement, however, isn’t where it needs to be for me to launch the site/project, so I’m holding off while I figure out a formula that gets results.

But in the meantime, I’m having fun doing it. Here’s hoping it can grow into something worthwhile.

What are you up to? What’s on your plate as we start cruising into the holiday season?