Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Choices We Make ...

Yesterday, I came across a rejected cover for a local guide we published for about seven years. In it, my son Henry is posing as a snowman ... dangling gloves, uneven hat and even a pipe!

When I found the picture at home, I brought it in for the cover shot and this was the email I got back from my designer ...
here's the cover. However, a lot of people who saw it said "why is he smoking?" so apparently the snowman reference isn't as apparent as it should be. do you have any other winter photos handy we could consider for the cover?
It was a little deflating .. and our designer - who was very creative - did not take telling me this was not an appropriate photo to use lightly... just being honest.

In hindsight, the photo we used, of Henry buried in snow, conveyed the feeling of being a part of a magical season; still, the snowman picture still makes me laugh at the silliness and innocence of it.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Finish Strong

My wife Jody (in the bright green shirt in this picture) amazes me - he dedication to fitness and health, her ability to focus on goals and achieve them, and her well-balanced approach to life, family, friends, her faith and priorities.

Over ten years ago, we trained together - especially the long runs on the weekends - for a marathon. We would start together, run about the first 6-8 miles together, and while still able to talk freely, would do things like say our wedding vows, talk about having a family, about our future, and so on. Once we hit about mile nine, my loud foot thumping, my breathing, my glances - all became incredibly annoying to her - as did my 'pace' - which is to say at times, I think I would give it my all to keep up with her or do all I could to drop off away from her to try to keep the good conversation flowing. Any way, we would tersely agree to split apart so we could retain the harmony of the first eight miles and I knew that meant - "see you at home Darryl" - because she is a fast runner!
She would always tell me - even if I had to stop, get a drink, stretch, lay down, whatever - to "Finish Strong!" ... and would almost always have a large glass of ice water waiting for me - and sometimes cheering me on from down the street as I finished. The extra encouragement and enthusiasm, plus her sage advice, always gives me an extra kick ...

Henry and Scarlett

Last January ('08), we brought our son Henry along to enjoy the Iowa Caucus. He curled up on a chair and read Harry Potter while we 'duked it out' with our neighbors to see who would be our neighborhood candidate for the Democratic candidate.
At one point I turned to my wife and said - "look - it's Scarlett Johanssen by the door" - to which my wife laughed. After a few minutes of seeing her take pictures with others in the room, we confirmed that it was indeed her, in Ames, IA!? and I encouraged my son Henry to shuffle over and get a picture with her.
"Someday in about 15 years, you will thank me for this introduction!" I said. He never really understood who she was/is. I bought her CD a few days ago and although he liked it, asked to put back in his favorite, Coldplay, on the way to soccer.