Day 70 – Thankful for Everyone Who Brought Color to My Life Today

Today has been a pretty awesome day so far.  The day has gone so well that I was struggling to find a way to include all that I am thankful for, but I think I found it…

It started off with an early morning drive up to Eau Claire through some impossibly huge snowflakes.  On a whim I turned right instead of going straight and took the path less traveled.  It paid off in spades for me.

Just a short distance south of Whitehall I saw a sight that caused me to jam on the brakes, turn around, and find a place to park the car.  Watching for traffic I quickly went into the road and was able to snap a pic of what captured my attention…  I swear, there are no edits or special effects done to capture this picture.


The flowers were a memorial to someone and they immediately brought to mind my friend Larry and his family, who are suffering through a horrific tragedy.  As I thought about Larry I couldn’t help but remember times I’ve spent with him in different Chamber events and whatnot.  He is always quick to smile, take his time to consider things before speaking, and always reminds me of a younger version of one of my grandpas.  He always went out of his way to help me feel comfortable in room and I always smiled when seeing him in a meeting I went into.  In thinking about Larry I smiled and realized that in a week or so I need to take him out for coffee and re-connect.

While driving I got a phone call from Nicole, one of my team members in Rice Lake.  She is spunky, motivated and has a super high and positive energy that just exudes from her voice first thing in the morning.  When talking with her I could just hear the pride and passion she has for what she does, and as always, the phone call ended with a big smile on my face.  Later in the day she called again and joked about how I must hate getting calls from her, but in actuality I really appreciate them.  Her enthusiasm always helps get me more fired up.

While in the Eau Claire office I had my first peer coaching call with Jason from Nashville.  Talk about someone with high energy and drive – wow!!!  Our 40 minute call was incredibly helpful and I was left in awe of how efficiently and effectively he handled the call.  We were able to set the stage of where we both want to develop to within the next year, discuss our areas for improvement, discuss how to help hold each other accountable, and learn a lot about our long term goals and our families.  It was an incredibly uplifting call that had me psyched!

Shortly after the call Katie from our Eau Claire office came in to the office I was in and was just beaming with happiness and pride.  She explained that they had several new clients starting and how much she was loving a slight twist on her position.  Her smile was contagious and I left the conversation feeling very positive, optimistic, and proud.

Over lunch I was able to spend time with Lee and Carolyn, the managers of Eau Claire and Menomonie and Beth, my regional developer.  The conversation focused on our goals for 2017, some of the personal goals and dreams we had and what was needed to get on track to reach them.  It was upbeat, optimistic, positive, and yet grounded in knowing that we have a lot of hard work to get there.  Carolyn and Lee both made me smile and feel a sense of pride in seeing how much they’ve grown over the past year or so and how ready they are to do great things in 2017 and beyond.

To close up the work day (in the office at least) I spent some one on one time with Beth.  I am incredibly thankful and appreciative to have someone who has a great balance of pushing, asking tough questions, all while motivating, and supporting me.  She’s always in a good mood and her positive energy always leaves me feeling re-charged and ready to take on the world.  Spending time with her always puts more color in my day.

As I headed home I hopped on the phone with Becky for a while and joked around with her.  Regardless of how trivial the conversation I am always happy to talk with her as I start to head home from a day of work.  It is a reminder of why I push as hard as I do – for us to be able to do more together.

My dad and I caught up on what we hadn’t talked about over the past week and covered topics like work, retirement, snow plowing, and parental karma (almost last night’s topic, it’s a long, but funny story for another day).  While we didn’t solve any of the world’s problems, we enjoyed each other’s company.

While the boys and Becky are all at log rolling I know that they will be amongst the last ones to bring color to my day when they get home.  While they aren’t quite as happy to see me when they get home as the dogs are, giving them big hugs when they get home always bring me joy and help me feel at home.  I already know the answers to the questions I’ll ask them (How did log rolling go? – Good.  What was new at school today? – Nothing) I’ll still be happy to ask them and press them for better answers before tucking them in to bed at night.

Today was an awesome day and it was made more awesome by the people I interacted with.  I started with taking a different way on a whim and ended up finding the photo that put this all together.  Especially during winter and the holidays I have the choice to see the world as I would like to.  I can choose to see the bland white, the dreary gray, the dark black…  or I can choose to see the color.  I can focus on those things that bring the beauty and happiness in spite of, and sometimes because of the appreciation of, the whites, grays, and blacks.  Thank you to everyone who helps to bring color to my life!



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