2018: One Second at a Time

Above is a video that contains 365 one-second videos that were taken, clipped, and compiled using the app 1SE. Wanting to write a recap post, this was arguably the best tool I had to jog the ol’ brain.

This blog has skewed towards professional and then skewed a little more towards writing within the context of a specific professional community focused on online/digital learning in adult higher ed. Fortunately, this video likely gives a much more rounded perspective of who I am–or at least–what makes me happy enough to pull out my phone and capture it.

First and foremost, that means my family. More often than not, my day seems like it really begins when I get home in the evening. I love spending time with my wife and my two kids more than anything else and for good reason: we have a lot of fun. Looking back at the video, we eat a lot of sweets. Probably not the best habit. But we tend to bond over candy and ice cream and donuts. It gets us out of the house, it’s cheap, it’s celebratory, and it’s communal. Speaking of community, a lot of the videos are either from family or friend birthday celebrations, which is fun to see from a macro perspective.

The evidence also shows there’s a lot of performing. Earlier in the year Lucy took ballet lessons. This Fall she switched full time over to musical theater and both Faye and Lucy are continuing to take classes there. Faye had her first lead role as Annie during her summer camp and also started taking piano lessons. We love our little Sooner Theatre community.

Speaking of performing, there are more videos in here than I originally remember of myself playing music. I don’t post a lot of my own performances (namely because I physically can’t record and play), but I played a handful of camps and retreats this year as part of Summit Collective. It’s a community that keeps me both active and grounded, and one that I immensely appreciate.

This is also the year that I locked in both sides of the health coin: diet and exercise (I wrote a little bit about this in January). I’ve spent the last ten years focusing on my health, but I can only really think of two distinct three-month windows where both diet and exercise felt really locked in. I can say without a doubt that 2018 was the first full year where I was firing on all cylinders. This comes with some obvious physical perks but I feel like I’m mentally in a place I haven’t been in quite sometime.

One outcome of this change in habit has been that I’ve started cooking a lot more. I’ve never amounted to much more than a water burner in the kitchen, but I’ve found cooking to be a nice way to of course eat healthier, but also unwind from work and provide for my family. Our family is fans of the popular meal boxes you see advertised to you online and on podcasts. After trying several different companies, we’ve come to prefer Plated. For Christmas, my mom bought me an Instant Pot, which I already love. I meal prep a lot of protein, and what took four to six hours now takes 30 minutes.

The video also shows we added a dog to our family in late June. Her name is Nala and has quite the story. After a long hard fought battle to be a dog-free home, I’ve turned out to be the biggest sympathizer of her need for attention and love. Who would have known I would turn out to be a softy with dogs?

2018 was likely my favorite year of travel. In aggregate, I did it less than I’ve done it in the last five years, but I did it bigger. My first trip was to a small conference in LA plus an extra day to Malibu. The conference had a rule about social media so I didn’t write about it, though looking band I probably should have anyways if only to talk about eating a steak at The Old Place which was recommended by Rolin Moe (The Old Place makes its One Second appearance on March 22nd and I was thankful to hear it survived the Woolsey Fire).

Next was to OLC Innovate in Nashville (blog post from April). Reflecting on the year, I probably undervalued how much I enjoyed that trip simply for the nightlife surrounding that conference. I went to a total of four different music venues in three days and saw an assortment of the best of what Nashville had to offer. My life was also changed the moment my lips touched hot chicken. We fell in love. We quickly fell out of love the next morning sitting on the hotel toilet, but I still think about her often.

Then, of course, I went to teach in Arezzo, Italy and had an one-in-a-lifetime opportunity to hike the dolomites. My first time traveling across the Atlantic did not let me down. It was really special for Katie and I ,and we’re excited to do it again this year but with our daughters in tow this go-around.

Last, I went to New York for the first time in a decade. New York was noticeably absent my list of favorite cities up until this time. I enjoyed the trip immensely and cranked out two blog posts (here and here) about it.

Speaking of blog posts, I wrote fewer this year than in previous years, but that’s ok. I don’t see it as a long term trend and am still dedicated to this space. I did slipp away from social media. I was updating the 1SE video monthly on Instagram, but stopped midway so I would think about it more as a year project and not a set of monthly projects that had to be perfectly curated.

I also deactivated my Twitter and Facebook accounts for the majority of the month of December. Did you notice? Neither did I. I’ve since reactivated both, and it’s amazing what a month off will do. My relationship to both is significantly different than it was. Point blank: I don’t check Twitter anymore. At all. Seriously. Occasionally, there are a few journalists who I keep tabs on, but I simply don’t go to the Twitter timeline. I’ve kicked the habit.

On the contrary, I’ve shockingly (a bit unfortunately) found more value in Facebook than I had before. Mostly because that’s where my gym communicates and I missed the online community of my fellow Koda members. I also don’t spend a ton on the timeline there either, but I do feel more connected to my “Friends” on Facebook. A weird net result–I realize. Despite Zuck’s bad year of press, Twitter hit the bottom of my preferred social media platforms.

What does next year bring? Hopefully some new life into this space. I have a lot that I would like to write and while tangental to what I’ve written in the past, I would prefer it be a noticeable evolution. Blog on.

Featured image: Nixie clock flickr photo by Moody Man shared under a Creative Commons (BY-NC) license