2016 Year in Review

I had a great year last year. All of my dreams came true. In January I was dealing with my new book being published and released. I had a lot of things going on with my career and I decided to expand more. We are now in more cities than ever before. I announced my retirement plans for SJC. I went around to all of my offices and let them know the plan. Lindsay has now purchased 50% of SJC. I still retain 50% but will no longer have a CEO position after this year. I am going to keep my ownership for a few years until she expands enough to buy me out. She has a 5 year plan for that. I wish her all my best and I know she is going to make everything run smoothly.

My twins were born in February! Everything leading up to their birth was a learning experience. I had to figure everything out as I went. I had great advice and support. Thank goodness for Sarah. She has been such an important part of their life. I could not have made it this far without her. I also thank my other 2 nannies. They have helped Sarah recoup from all the hours she works for us. She is a part of our family now and I want to take care of her forever. She is still in school she is almost done with 2 of her certifications. I’m happy for her still keeping her own dreams going as she works for us.

Let me think. In March I turned 43. 42 was a memorable year. But 43 was a fresh start. I really enjoyed celebrating my birthday and taking time off to plan ahead. My boys pretty much took over my spring and I couldn’t have been happier. I remember my two little peanuts being so small. They were great from the beginning and allowed me to make mistakes, learn, and slowly know what they needed.

April and May were still a blur because I was in baby overload.

As for the rest of the year. Everything was a lesson. I met my wife. We became engaged. I legally adopted my boys. I had a huge family wedding. And we had our first Christmas. It was all perfect. My marriage is strong and healthy. We talk everything out. We still haven’t even had one fight.

I am so thankful for a great 2016. So many positive and wonderful things came into my life. I feel very blessed. I owe it all to God. My Catholic Faith has really taught me no matter what happens keep faith and hope that everything will always work out. And it did.

I am happy, healthy, and loving my life. I love my wife very much. I love Heston and Alex. And I look forward to the new year.

Go Vegan! Go Cubs! Go Thunder! and Go Bears!

What a game!

How about them Cubs! In 2016 after 108 years of not winning the World Series baseball game my hometown Chicago Cubs finally won the big one. And I watched every out. I did get to attend some of the playoff games and really enjoyed it. I won’t do it again because it’s so much better to sit at home and watch the game on tv. I wanted to be apart of this season and really feel like being there made me a stronger fan. I can always tell my boys I was THERE when they played certain games. I kept my tickets and we are going to make a shadow box with some of my souvenirs. I want to always remember how hard it was to win each series. What a moment to watch with millions of people when Kris Bryant got the ball and with an unforgettable smile ended the drought by throwing the ball to first base for the final out. I will NEVER forget that. It was a huge party for the next several days and I will never forget the parade downtown. Honoring the men that brought us so much joy and watching the pivotal plays over and over on Sportscenter made it all seem unreal.

Since the end of the game I have bought World Series hats and t-shirts. I have went to the Cubs pop up store and their official sports fan stores looking at all the great products. My Christmas tree has Chicago cubs ornaments on it memorializing this year. I know I haven’t been a lifelong fan but it was something special to me. I watched the games on my couch and slowly won Sarah over as a fan. She didn’t care, didn’t know, and didn’t want to watch the games until she kept telling me to quiet down. She would stand there and ask questions and the next thing I know she would be sitting down next to me. We added 3 new cubs fans from my house this year and I couldn’t be happier. I know she wants to go to a few games next season and I will be happy to take her.

Thank you to all the players, workers, owners, and fans that made this year really special for me to watch and enjoy. I will never ever forget those games. No wonder baseball is such a huge part of family life in Chicago. You can’t ever take it away from them. The Cubs earned it.

Congratulations to all of the players for a great 2016 baseball season. And way to go CUBS!

Cubs Win in 10th Inning

Last night I hauled my family over to my office for a special family meal. I was going to take them out to eat but Sarah asked if we could watch the game somewhere else because the boys need their sleep. She was right. We did wake them up twice so I arranged to get the conference room set up with our big tv and a bunch of tables/chairs for everyone to be comfortable.

Lindsay and I got off work and split up. She went one direction to get the bbq and fixins, I went another way to get the pizzas and the chicken and salad stuff. Then I went to get the desserts and we met up at the office. She was already there setting up the tables for me and setting out the plates and silverware. The only thing I forgot to get was ice. Which worked out because I had to start hauling people over. The nannies helped drive both vehicles back and forth and I got everyone over in 3 groups. Man was that a hassle. Apparently some of my Aunts don’t want to sit with some of my cousins. It was musical chairs and I felt like an old dad saying Just go SIT DOWN Lol

We all watched the Pre-game Chicago Cubs show and enjoyed a meal. The game started and the first wave of airport bound family members started getting out of the door. We took a bunch of photos, we had a great few days together. It was a lot of fun seeing everyone. After they all left my employees with their families and friends that wanted to watch the tv with us came over. They helped us eat up all of the leftovers. Helped me clean up most of what we had and sat to watch the game. We still had plenty of food to munch on so it was actually really nice.

When it was bedtime for the boys Sarah took them home and left them in the care of Brandi who doesn’t get into the Cubs as much as we do. Sarah came back and was able to enjoy the rest of the game with us. I was so happy she was there. She has really enjoyed watching it with me. At first she was tired of me talking about the Cubs but I think they won her over with such an awesome series of games.

The game was incredible. I’m sure most of you watched it. It was back and forth. There was no clear winner. Just when you thought the Cubs had it locked down it went to crap fast. Lester came in and threw a wild pitch which scored 2. I almost had a heart attack. Then we came back on a great double by Ben Zobrist which scored Al jr! So great!

In the 10th inning when it was 7 to 6 Cubs lead we had to get 3 outs. Just 3. The first one was pretty easy, the second was a little tougher. At this point everyone is standing up praying. Please or Come on Cubbies. Or just one more out! And finally a base hit to Bryant who is smiling because HE KNOWS he has this play. Throw over to Rizzo who throws his arms up in the arm and we ALL LOST OUR SHIT Lol

We were jumping up and down, high fives, hugs. Dads and kids embracing, moms and kids hugging. It was awesome!!!!! I had so much fun watching the game like that I asked if they all wanted to do the Super Bowl like this too but catered and more comfortable chairs. They all voted yes so that’s a plan for next year.

Just hearing stories from everyone of how long they have been Cubs fans. The phone calls to people’s parents who were also watching the game. Our sales manager Jim called his dad and neither of them could even speak. His dad had to go out-of-town and missed watching the game but Jim told him doesn’t matter because you saw it happen. It was very emotional.

I was so happy to sit and watch the post game show. We all talked about how the Indians really did their best and they never gave up on the game. They made it so hard to win so thanks to the Cleveland Indians and all their fans for hanging in there last night. It could have gone either way. We had the better night.

And finally after 108 years, the CHICAGO CUBS are the 2016 World Series Champions!

cubswinI am not a lifelong Cubs fan. I am about 9 years into the Cub fan life. I appreciate all everyone has been through waiting. It really was an emotional event and I will never forget it. I ordered my Cubs World Series hats and shirts. I bought stuff for the boys too.

Tonight after work I’m taking my boys, Sarah, and Lindsay down to Wrigley field because I want to take some family photos. I want my boys to remember this photos. We will always be a Cubs family and I am so happy they won.

Great job Cubs. Thank you for an amazing season. Let’s do it again next year!


Chicago Cubs Game 6

All morning in my head I have been willing the Cubs to win Game 6 tonight. I have 2 tickets to the game and my buddy Drew is here. I picked him up at 10:15am. He is so excited! I can’t wait to go to the game with him. He keeps reminding me how historic this would be if we are at Game 6 and the Cubs clinch a spot in the World Series. Of course my mind starts going into I wonder how much World Series tickets are and I wonder how hard it will be to try to get some? I love my Cubs but even I have a limit on what I pay for these tickets. And I’m pretty sure lifelong Cub fans will be doing anything they can to go. I’m an Imported Cubs fan. I was very blessed just to get these tickets.

So Uncle Drew has been loving up on his nephews. My boys love their Uncle Drew. They have been crawling all over him and I had forgotten what a great dad he is to the babies. It’s when they get a little older he gets strict. He holds one, I hold the other and we talk about how crazy it is that I have twins and no woman Lol It really is the best case for me to have a family. Everything works out in God’s timing. Uncle Drew has also been telling me the crazy emails and texts he is getting from Auntie Lindz about the boys’ christmas list. The imaginary christmas present list my not even 1 year old boys have made and sent to her Lol Drew keeps telling me he has the best gifts for them that will blow my mind. Unless there’s a baby batman suit, I doubt it. My boys already have too much stuff. When you live with 3 women part time they tend to find stuff as they are shopping and bring it back. And I’m worse I’m a brand new Amazon Prime Junkie. Weekly now boxes of various baby stuff is showing up. And I just laugh when Sarah says What did you get now! It’s an addiction. I can’t help it.

So we are leaving at 4pm to get over to Wrigley. We have to figure out parking then walk to the stadium. I know I’m going to start eating bad stuff. It started with that Tin Roof on the way to the Packer game Thursday night. Now I’m craving a stadium hot dog. I know I know! So bad, and who knows what those things contain but there’s just something about having a hot dog at the ballpark. I hope I just get a salad instead. Who knows. I do know that Drew is already on me about getting some beers but I don’t want to do that. I haven’t had a drink since the Super Bowl. I know this game will be memorable enough I don’t need to have a beer with my best friend to remember it. I told him get as many beers as he wants. He said he needs to get tshirts and hats for all his family and a few co-workers. He bragged to a few guys at work he was going to the game tonight with me.

So now it’s all about spending the day with my sons. Getting myself ready for the game and hoping like heck the Chicago cubs win tonight! Go Cubs!

Have a great Saturday everyone!

I finished the Chicago Marathon yesterday!

Yesterday I finished the Chicago Marathon. It wasn’t my best run but it was the best I could do. My foot started hurting about half way through it. I did have to stop 3 times to walk a little. I wouldn’t say I ran any of it. I mostly jogged. I did put in some really good splits in the beginning. That part I’m happy with. My overall time was just over 4 hours. I think that’s pretty good. I had set a goal of 3 hours 30 minutes and I didn’t make that. I’m proud I made it through. I’m sore and exhausted. My legs never cramped up last night. I had prayed to God to get me through the night without any big pains Lol I’m mostly stiff. I feel like…well I ran a marathon Lol And I’m pretty much over running marathons now. My foot is never going to heal up enough for me to enjoy that again. I’m going to stick to running 5ks and smaller. I do very well with those. I have won a few of the smaller neighborhood ones before a few years back. I know my limitations now and I know all of that training was worth it. I am in the best shape of my life right now. I want to continue to workout, jog, walk my dog and stay active. I’m really enjoying yoga because I can already feel an improvement in my lower back. I’m not very flexible to begin with and being able to bend over with the babies is really helpful.

Everyone that ran in the marathon yesterday, you are the real mvp. I passed a few people and felt pretty good and near the end I was getting passed and felt like go ahead I don’t even care anymore Lol At the end of my run my boys were there waiting. They got to see me finish and play with my medal. I’m happy to say I survived. And never again!

I’m trying to keep my legs flexible today I’m trying to work then walk around a little to keep them moving. I wanted to go out to eat for lunch today with a friend but I told him just grab something and come here. I can’t walk over there Lol I’m being a big baby. Lindsay was very helpful in making sure I ate the right things yesterday and keeping me hydrated. She’s staying until Tuesday night. I’m glad she’s here. My boys laugh all of the time when she’s around. She has come up with some very creative language she substitutes for swear words which throws me off. But I’m glad to see she’s making an effort around them. I told her if their first word was any cuss word she was in big trouble. She said she’s working with them to say Auntie. I think that’s asking too much. It will be da da! Or with my luck Sarah Lol I don’t know yet we are still a few months off from that I think.

I’m going to get back to work here. Pray for my legs please. I know a few more days I will be fine but I am not 21 years old anymore. I’m 43. And a marathon finisher! Batman finished the race 😉

Have a great week everyone. Enjoy the weather. It’s beautiful outside!

Hurricane Matthew

matthew   Hurricane Matthew is closer to hitting land in Florida. I am praying for everyone to get out of there. I know it’s going to side swipe the states but it’s still bad. We called all 6 of our employees off yesterday. We released $6,000 in emergency funds direct deposited at $1,000/employee for them to get moved, boarded up, gas, supplies or anything they needed. Our office will be closed in Miami until Monday and I’m hoping it won’t sustain too much damage. All 6 employees and their families also took us up on our offer to get them out west in a hotel for a few days. It took some convincing but once we said you can take your pets they all agreed. Why would I make them leave their pets during a Hurricane? Lol Geez. So everyone is checked in, enjoying hotel amentities but most of all they are safe. That’s the best I can do for them. I just hope they all have homes to come back to.

hurricane-matthew-5pm-october-5  If you are in the area, please follow whatever evacuation orders you have. Listen to the President, the Governors and mayors. As well as the local police. Get out of there. You can come back in a day or so. I don’t really know how long it’s going to last but it’s huge and on the news it looks scary.

I pray to God everyone is safe. The damage is minimal and that no one gets hurt. It’s already killed over 100 people. It’s so sad to see something like this happen. Take care everyone down there! Love ya’ll!

Everyone else please Donate to the Red Cross or any organization you can. I’ve already donated a couple thousand and will donate some more when the Red Cross does the next update.

Stay safe Southeastern U.S.!

Extra Security

My company wants me to take security with me when I got to Paris in November. I think it’s ridiculous but they said just to be safe. Apparently Kim whoever got robbed, plus the bombings, shootings, and other things going on in Europe. They want me to be safe and protected. I said why wouldn’t I have security going into Dubai rather than Paris? It should be the reverse. I will think about it but I don’t think that’s necessary. I stay in an apartment rental for the few days I’m there, no one knows that location because I rent different places each time. I grab food and take it with me. I usually eat in the back of a car going from one place to the other. And my shopping time is limited. To be honest most of my shopping is actually in the airport since I have at least an hour wait or 2 to get through. Unless someone wants something specific. Then I go into that store, get it and come out.

Work is busy. I was in New York City yesterday. I got home late last night. In time to get the boys to bed. Which is very important to me. I got to read them 2 books, rock each one then get them to bed. Before I go to bed I sneak in there and make sure they are still okay. Do a quick prayer over each one then go to my room. They are growing up so fast. Everything is fine. It’s actually perfect. They are both healthy and developing as they should be. Alex is no longer underweight. He has no issues from when he had the cord wrapped around his neck at birth. He’s okay. Heston is hilarious and still very chill. I swear that kid does not react to much. He laughs stuff off. Even when his brother gets upset he just sits there. He only gets mad when he’s hungry. And he lets everyone know it.

I have the Chicago Marathon this weekend! I’m so excited. Lindsay is coming in on Friday afternoon she said. She said she got the twins Marathon shirts Lol I can’t wait to see what they are. She’s always doing custom shirts for them. She even had some made up that say “My godmum rocks” for both of them. I’m in the 40 to 44 age group so I’m running against a bunch of 40 year olds. I won’t win anything I know that I just want to do it once. Every year something happens or I’m not healthy enough to do it. I’ve been rehabbing my foot for so long. I’m ready. I had a great run last week to prep. This week I’m only stretching. I need to keep my legs good. I don’t want to run or jog at all to burn out. I just need some light stretching twice a day. Sarah and I are doing Yoga in the living room. She’s been helping me try different ways to stretch. My back feels great. Yoga is cool. I may continue to do that. Sarah said they have baby yoga classes and it’s better to limber the boys up now for sports. We all know my boys will be in something. So I guess she’s right.

I’m trying to eat really well this week. I’m going to load up on carbs Thursday night. And get ready to fuel my body for the race. I’ve been training for this race and I have a good running group to start out with. I know they will all leave me in the dust and I told them run your race. Don’t pace me. I will pace myself. I just want to finish it. I don’t even care what place I get. My time I would like to be decent and I will try really hard. I just have to remember to grab some waters. I tend to not do that and then I cramp up really bad about an hour or more later on. Lindsay said she will have Gatorade, bananas and some other things in a small cooler after the race. I told her that’s great and I know we will go over to the After Race party for a little bit. I want to find my friends and see how they did. Then I’m going home to soak in a tub and try to act like I’m not stiff and sore Lol Lindsay already schedule a massage for me at work on Monday. The lady actually comes into my office. How cool is that! I will probably need it.

I better get back to work. I’ve been here since 6am and needed a break.

Have a great day everyone! Love ya’ll!