Jul 5, 2024

What I’m Up To - Vol. 84

Here's what I've been up to since Volume 83...

What I'm Up To Volume 84

Hey friends,

Here’s what I’ve been up to since Vol. 83…

1. June Happenings

It’s hard to believe but this marks seven years of writing this humble newsletter. I started this as my “introvert’s networking plan,” and it has been a great way to stay in touch with friends and colleagues. The biggest gift by far has been the reflection required to write it. I tend to be very future-focused. I’m quick to move on to the next big thing. For the last seven years, I’ve hit pause, scrolled through my photos, looked back at my calendar, and browsed through the books and shows I’ve digested. You get so much more from life when you live it twice!

It’s been great having you along for the ride, too. Keep replying back and sharing what you’re up to!

We kicked off June with our youngest graduating from high school 🎓, at Apamada. It’s a sweet haven for smart kids that might stick out elsewhere. With only about ten graduates, the Academy-Awards-themed night didn’t drag on like the actual Oscars. Each graduate was introduced by one of the professors. Brett, the eye-patched English teacher (aka “Mad-Eye Moody” in our household) lauded our graduate for his expert prose and deep thinking. There was a fabulous keynote by acclaimed playwright and activist, V (formerly Eve Ensler). It was a great Texas evening. The mosquitoes even gave us a break. I’m still stunned at the prospect of being an empty nester.

Learning and growing with these excellent humans!

I attended Craft + Commerce in Boise with my chief of staff, Carly, and our senior writer, Katy. The cozy event is for creators – authors, coaches, podcasters, and YouTubers. It’s definitely my tribe. Each of the two days is bookended with several 20-minute keynotes with workshops in between. We heard from Ali Abdaal, Codie Sanchez, Susie Bulloch, Bonnie Christine, and many more. The workshops were on point. I loved Tim Grahl’s talk and was inspired to open my calendar for 50 interviews with current and past customers for The ONE Thing. Plus, Boise is perfectly walkable and charming.

Carly expertly navigated our ✈️ delays and cancellations (going and coming). We very nearly missed it. On our return trip, we came up with the idea of a delay-themed airport bar. Cocktails could include Cancelled Flight 🍻, Weather Delay 🍹, Lost Luggage 🍷, and the Middle Seat 🥃. Please steal this idea. I will happily tip your servers while sipping a Standby List 🍸extra dirty.

The Ooni Pizza Oven 🍕wins again!


Gus turned 20 in June. 🤯 We celebrated with a pizza party for him and his crew. Wendy made bday pancakes and we had a donut cake as well. His big gift was an airbrush for his Warhammer 40,000 figurines. The next day we celebrated a low-key Father’s Day with Franklin’s BBQ 🔥 and Pint House Pizza Electric Jellyfish.🍻 This dad was happy.

Now that I’m almost 55, I had the privilege of a certain routine medical procedure preceded by a 24-hour fast and a miserable sleepless night (IYKYK). Two good outcomes to report. First, happy to report I’m cancer-free and good to go for another five years. Second, I started a great show I’ll share later. Don’t mess around, friends. Do everything you can to stay ahead of it. PSA over.

The 2024 Quantum Leap Class!


As many of you know, we’re longtime supporters of KW Next Gen (formerly KW Kids Can). Gary Keller taught his signature class, Quantum Leap, for a room full of young adults, including Gus. We hosted, Eva, a coworker's delightful daughter who was in for the class. Everyone left inspired. If you have a young person in your life (17- to 30-ish), sign them up for 2025. It is an amazing program.

Finally, we trekked up to Fargo for Grandpa Milt's memorial. He was well-loved. So many folks showed up they had to bring in extra chairs for people to sit. ❤️ We met lots and lots of cousins and heard lots of new stories. It was a worthy celebration for a sad occasion. If you ever go to Fargo, make sure to visit Sandy’s Donuts and order a Cronut – a croissant donut!

Two other things of note. I met up with my old colleague, Ellen, for happy hour after many misfired attempts. We worked together for well over a decade and grew up together in KW. I love that she is happy and flourishing. Another KW friend, Kim, dropped in for the weekend to look at buying a second home. 🏘️ I played showing assistant while Wendy did the hard stuff. They put a cute home under contract over the weekend. 🤞Hopefully, we’ll be seeing Kim a lot more in the future! 

2. What I’m Reading

In honor of Milt, I completed David Baldacci’s Will Robie series, reading End Game and The Guilty. It’s a fun series if you like spy thrillers. Gary shared that he was loving Extinction by Douglas Preston so I downloaded it and read it on one of my many delayed flights. I expected it to be a Jurasic Park knock-off but it surprised me in good ways.

At Craft + Commerce, Tim Grahl gifted me a copy of his upcoming novel, The Shithead. He describes it as Faust meets Fleishman Is In Trouble. It is all that and a tense, human story of learning to love oneself. I read it in two sittings while cringing and crying. Tim has worked hard to fulfill his dream of becoming a fiction writer of note. I think he’s done it and hope Apple+ buys the film rights!

For nonfiction, our leadership team read Trust by Dr. Henry Cloud. It’s excellent. Sometimes when trust falls apart it's not the other person's fault, it’s that we have some baggage that needs to be addressed. Finally, I read Serve to Sell by John Meese, who I met at the conference. It’s a solid, short primer on a service approach to sales. 

3. What I’m Watching

Wendy and I adored Hacks (MAX) Season 3. The show just gets better and better. We can’t wait for the next season. I watched New Life (Amazon) on a lark after a review saying it was one of the best films made during COVID-19. I ended up talking about it for the next few days. It had more twists than a pretzel factory. We finished the first season of Fallout (Amazon) with Gus and gave it a solid thumbs-up. Walton Goggins plays the best characters! We also enjoyed Blake Crouch’s Dark Matter (Apple+). They did a great job of faithfully adapting the Sci-fi thriller.

While Eva was visiting, we watched Richard Linklater’s The Hitman (Netflix) with Glen Powell and Adria Arjona. It started a little slow but is worthy of all the hype.

Finally, I binged season one of Peaky Blinders (Netflix) the night before my procedure. It’s now my favorite family crime drama. I went on to watch season 2 as well. I can thank my friend Jennie (who always nails her recommendations) for suggesting this years ago and Carly for nudging me to finally watch it. I’ve now dubbed our daily huddles “family meetings.” 

That’s it for this month. Please reply back and let me know what you’re up to!

Be well, do good deeds, and eat tacos!

Jay  

Note - I've decided to start using Amazon affiliate links for the books I share here. While this newsletter isn't a commercial enterprise, it does have costs to defray. I hope you don't mind.

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