Taking Your Kids Sledding!

HoneyDuncanSaucer

Last year, my friend Kitty took Duncan and I on our first EVER sledding trip. I’d been snow tubing before, but never sledding (pretty different experiences). We had such a great time with her and her amazing daughter, that we went again when the snow piled up over the holidays this year.

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Kitty and her family are seriously awesome friends. We’ve forged our friendship through roller derby, late night dancing to DeVotchKa at the tiniest bar in town and crazy instances of mutual friends.

We ended up at a golf course this time around. Because of that, I won’t have the punkin sledding without a helmet again. HD is fearless. And I try hard not to be overly protective of him. I want him to get bumps and bruises and learn lessons that way. Of course, these are measured risks I allow. Not just buck wild shit.

He really wanted to go down the hill alone (because I slow the sled down). I watched Brad and Kitty go down first and thought, okay, not a big deal. So I sent him off, down the hill. About 15 seconds into his descent, he vanished!

HOLY FUCK THE UNIVERSE JUST ATE MY BABY!

I thought that a sinkhole had opened up and ate my precious punkin. At the top of the hill I screamed out “DUNCAN!” And started running towards where he was. But I fell about two steps in and then just mostly did this to get to him:

Penguin-Sliding-Around-On-Its-Adorable-Belly

{Via}

Turned out that he had nailed a jump off the hill into the sand trap. As the other folks around were marveling in the kid’s ability to land the jump in tact, I was just so happy he has okay. And thankful that we’ve been working so hard on following directions. Directions like: do not let go of the handles when you go down the hill.  It was perfectly shaded, so we had NO idea there was a sand trap there.

When us grownups tried to repeat what the boy had done, we all complained about how badly it hurt our asses.  Umph! We are old.

Sledding is always a great workout, because the kids still insist on being towed back up.

KittyPullingHD

All this led me to conclude 3 fun tips for parents when it comes to sledding!

#1 – Helmets are important. Wear them. Duncan already has a bike helmet and I was pretty irresponsible for not having him wear it. With a thinner beanie, the helmet would have fit properly and protected him in case of a not so fortunate incident. I’m not judging what you choose to do, but my kid will be in one next time.

#2 – Bring back up mittens, and back ups for those. No matter how many times I ask Duncan to keep his hands out of the snow, he won’t. He loves eating it, as most kids do. And Frozen did me zero favors when it comes to his fascination with snow. I haven’t been able to find insulated, waterproof mittens for him yet.

#3- Pack a winter fun kit!  In this winter fun kit I’d include: a couple juice boxes, granola bars, a snack pack of Goldfish, water, a change of dry clothes, a blanket, lotion, lip balm, and if you can, a thermos with hot tea or cocoa. And more mittens.

Also, I did take a digger with him a couple times. It was instinct to hold him closer when we tumbled, but he would have been way better off if I hadn’t. We’re going to practice that move. Because we ain’t going conservative anytime soon. As Mr. Brad said, “sled fast and live dangerously.” He was joking.

Have fun out there! And do tell me, what do you do when you take the kids out in the chilly weather for fun?



Are You An Alt First Timer?

Tips For Alt First Timers Hey there! Are you an Alt first timer? Well, I wanted to offer some friendly tips! My favorite thing about tips is that you can take ‘em or leave ‘em.

Tip #1 – Alt First Timers Can Get Overwhelmed Easily

I’m a yoga fiend, so I’ll remind you to take care of yourself. Take breaks when you need them. Drink lots of water or coffee or diet coke. Whatever you need to feel refreshed. Be sure to eat at lunch. I’m an “eater” so I eat every single time they put out food. Which incidentally is between most sessions, too. If you’re coming in from out of the SLC timezone, make sure you adjust for sleep and eating on your normal schedule as much as possible. If you feel overwhelmed, just take a breath or a break. No one will judge you.

Tip #2 – Dress Like You Mean It At Alt

First timers have a tendency to get super freaked out about what to wear to Alt. Whether your “meaning it” is jeans and a t-shirt, or couture fashion, love what you decide to put on and do not judge your outfits against those of others. If I meet you, I really, really want to meet you. Not the version of you so uncomfortable in Spanx you’ve never worn before and an itchy top. I honestly won’t care what you’re wearing. I just want to get to know you and geek out over blogs, all the cool business cards, the pretty, pretty rooms the Alt team has created, and the like.

Tip #3 – Brace Yourself Alt First Timers, It Moves Fast

And when I say fast, I mean your head will be spinning. I’ve never been able to process an Alt fully until I get home and have a moment to unpack and breathe. The fast pace is exhilarating and fun and holy crap! Some other wise attendees told me to write things on business cards to help me remember the great people I meet. I also hand out Thank You cards to the folks I’ve made a real connection with before I leave on Friday. I like to dig in so I usually only make about 5 REAL connections. But man, are they worth it.

Tip #4 – Brands Aren’t Scary. Go Say Hi.

I made the most wonderful brand relationships at my very first Alt. At first I thought, they won’t want me around. I’m a tiny blog. Boy, was I wrong. They do want me. Because I have a genuine voice to add to conversations about their products. And I do content marketing for them. That’s right you are a tool for the brands’ marketing efforts. You are valuable to the brands.

Some may fit, some may not. Don’t feel obligated to force a round peg in a square hole. You don’t have to work with everyone, and not everyone will want to work with you. Remember this is business. That said, still go say hi. They’ve all put themselves out there to be at Alt and they’ll appreciate the smile.

Tip #5 – Just Enjoy!

Marvel in the lovely and creative business cards, take notes in your sessions to help remember important stuff. If you can, attend the Wed. Early Bird sessions so you get a feel for what the sessions are like. Plus, the content is fantastic on Wed. There is a Roundtable offered this year about what to do after Alt, I’ll be checking that one out. Write down questions that come up and ask! Presenters LOVE questions. Take a peek at the schedule here. 

The 20s/Downton Abbey party should be a blast. Yes, they’ll feed us. Don’t stress over the outfit. Hop in as many photo booths as you can! I never get a chance for this kind of stuff in my daily life. You better believe I’ll be in every photo op possible.

I’m teaching a design camp on SEO – attend it. Duh.

The mini-parties will be fantastic on Friday, close out the week with a bang!

Most of all, keep in mind that there will be a whole lot of people in a relatively small space. (It’s not small, but with so many people milling about it can feel small at times.) When I feel smashed in, I start a conversation with someone. Weird, but it works and I made friends at Alt that way. That’s the other cool thing about Alt, you’ll leave with friends.

Can’t wait to see you in my SEO workshop!



LinkedIn

Ugh.

Kids, many of you are familiar with my friend LeVar.

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That’s Var and me on his bike, Archie. It was a long time ago. Like, 2010, or something. Now we’re older and fatter and well, we’ve also done some dope shit. We both took our careers by the balls and got to working.

Which is actually why we’re talking about LeVar to begin with. His LinkedIn page is fucking amazing. Not only would I hire him, but I’d give him a handy just for interviewing at any company of mine. And I KNOW for a fact he wouldn’t appreciate the hand work.

And my LinkedIn page? Well, it’s actually pretty embarrassing. It says stuff like I enjoy social media management (I don’t). Plus, it’s smug. I supposed that is just unavoidable, because I’m smug.

Side note: I recently had a family caricature done and the cartoonist drew me with the smuggest shit-eating smirk on my face. And fuck that guy.

But back to LinkedIn. I am making it my mission while on vacation this week to beef it up. I have four days to pimp that bitch out. <<< It feels like people don’t say that anymore.

UPDATE: Well I got distracted while writing this blog post and enjoying my holiday and now my LinkedIn is updated. It’s still not as nice as LeVar’s, but I’ll get there.

Do you guys use LinkedIn? Is this the ONE spot where my Millennial cusp is just full-on Millennial?



A request, my friends

poem

Today is December 16, 2014. Two years ago today the world lost Jake Adam York. Jake was my mentor without really knowing it. He encouraged my writing; championed it even. When Jake passed, I felt a hole. Which was odd, because we weren’t particularly close, nor did we even regularly keep in touch.

The summer before he passed, I took a workshop with him to help me develop a book I’ve been writing for Duncan to help the boy understand homelessness.

As many of you may know, acting with compassion to the homeless is a priority in my life. And today on the anniversary of Jake’s passing, I need to ask you all for help.

I’ve been trying to put together “Kindness Bags” to distribute to the homeless in Denver. The weather here is now cold. The resources are being tapped at shelters. And I realize the holidays are here and folks are sick of giving, but I ask you to give, please, just once more.

There is a unique poetry in giving. A beauty that simply exists with the act. I know that to honor Jake I must ask you to give. Tears well up in my eyes thinking of the loss of such a strong person who was dedicated to giving. Only Jake gave in a different way.

I’ve put together an Amazon Wish List of items for these “Kindness Bags.” As you’ll see they are the most basic items that most of us can pick up on a whim.

Here is the wish list:  http://amzn.com/w/2TCDXK1FQSDAO

Please help and give. Anything at all is appreciated more than I will ever be able to tell you. I am sure you’ve lost someone you have cared about and this would be a beautiful way to honor them.

I’ll be happy to link back to your site as a thank you and promote you on social media (if that’s your thing).

You can also comment for my pay pal info if you’d like to just donate a few bucks. Anything and everything helps.

Thank you, friends.



Holiday Gift Guide 2014: Boomf

boomf sponsor

Once upon a time, I stumbled across the coolest gift. Boomf!

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Boomf creates adorable marshmallows with your photos printed right on them. It’s the perfect gift for the avid Instagrammer or someone who has celebrated a major milestone.

Also great for girlfriends to give to each other, families, besties, etc., etc. etc!

I treated myself to a special MotherBoy box of Boomf for the boy and I to enjoy with our hot chocolate this winter.

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I uploaded some of my favorite pics of me and Honey Duncan from over the years and then Boomf magically turned them into a real treasure.

Boomf can also work with Facebook or Instagram to bring your photos right over. Which is so cool. And convenient.

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The price point for this gift is around $25-30 and they have just added some cute other items as well. And really, they are stupid fun to make.

Man, I love that kid. And Boomf. You may want to order ASAP if you will need it by Christmas Eve.

XOXO,
Sport.