Turning 50


20140222_191306I had a great day yesterday.  It was, after all, my birthday.  It was the Big One.  It was the milestone.  The half-century mark.  It was the Big 5-0.

And to make it even better, I did what everyone wants to do on their birthday:  I updated my blogs, deleting one and touching up another.  I cleaned my garage.  I had a beautiful dinner with my family.  What more can a guy ask for?

The dinner was amazing: My wife made skirt steak directly on the coals of the grill.  Alton Brown has nothing on my wife!  My son made gratin potatoes that melted in your mouth.  My daughter cooked up some asparagus and garlic.  It was all simply the best meal I’ve eaten in months!

For dessert, we enjoyed some fantastic cupcakes from Sweet Home Cupcakes and played a few rounds of Boggle.  As is fitting for the birthday boy, I won.  And gloated.

20140222_191322And here is the best part of the evening:  My wife, always one to promote sappy, happy experiences, invited each one of the kids to share one thing about their father that they are most thankful for.  I won’t bore you with details about how wonderful they think I am…but I will say this, everything they mentioned is something new to my personality and character over the past year.  They are not things that come naturally.  in fact, I have to attribute this change to the past 365 days of effort and attention to my life.  I have intentionally worked on keeping my mouth shut, growing from my mistakes and changing the way I view the world.  It was not accident.  It didn’t just happen by chance.  And still doesn’t happen all the time.

I’ve stopped talking and started listening.  I’ve tried hard not to come back with a quick retort, a humorous story or offer my opinion when it isn’t requested.  I’ve kept my mouth shut and opened my mind.  In the end, it results in the appearance that I am wiser than I really am.

Keeping my mouth shut, the gray hair and the 64 ounces of water I drank today:  That’s my secret for appearing wise.