Weekend Projects

I’m not sure if anybody even reads this blog anymore. Life has been far too busy for me to write as often. I think I posted once per year for the past couple of years. I’m proud this version of it has been running since 2004 [1]. I plan to do much more writing this year.

I recently read an article about effective blogging. The entire article talked about how to write better articles faster. In summary, you set a topic, plan a strategy/outline, and fill in the blanks. Sounds like the same strategy I was taught to use in writing class in school – makes sense because it worked back then and it should carry over into blogging as well.

You see, by planning how you will write the story, you greatly shorten the time-consuming process of editing and re-writing to make it all fit together nicely. Turns out having a plan really does work. So did I make a plan before writing this? No.

This blog has no strategy. No sales motive. It’s literally my journal for the world to see. The World of Brian, if you will.

Moving on…

The most exciting things in my life lately (besides my family and working from home) have been wood projects. We refurbished our wooden kitchen table, built shelves in the garage, and are now working on a workbench. After that, I plan to build a standing wall-desk in my office. The best part is – I make a 3-D model of everything I want to build first, then execute it. It’s tons of fun to build projects this way and it’s the highlight of my weekend. Actually – spending free time with my family is the highlight, but read on, we do this together.

A workbench I’m planning to build for our garage. Designed with Google SketchUp.

Speaking of weekends, ours usually goes something like this: we go to the local farmers market and buy overpriced vegetables, then we come back and relax while eating lunch and put the boys down for their nap. Then we work on a project together (lately, the wood projects in the garage). Sometimes we babysit the cousins and that is usually tons of fun – the other day we played a game of catch with a few tennis balls. Very simple, but with kids that age it was an exciting game filled with lots of laughter.

I love the simple things in life.  A tasty meal. A good conversation. A long walk on a sunny day. Noticing big white clouds in the sky. Hiking at night under a full moon. Watching the stars. Even having a clean kitchen countertop is oddly satisfying.

Learn to value relationships more than things. The world is not always “this or that” – it’s ever changing and growing; breathing. Embrace the breath of life.

Moving on…

We’ve been watching BBC’s Sherlock Holmes on Netflix recently. I love the shows so far. Just finished series 2 and looking forward to finishing the final 3rd one. I’m also hoping we can get to the movies soon and watch Logan. It’s hard to plan babysitting for twins. Luckily we have family close by to help. Marvel movies have been pretty awesome and I’m looking forward to the next ones.

Well that’s all for now. I’m up late blogging because I can’t sleep, and it’s working. I feel tired now.

Until next time.

  1. In 2004 I switched from an  HTML/PHP based custom “news about me” website to using blogger.com. It was when I finally hopped on the bandwagon and started calling what I was doing “blogging”. Though later I switched to WordPress, I’ve kept my blogging history since then. The articles I wrote from 1999-2004 are not online anymore. I have a copy of them on my hard drive an haven’t gotten around to re-publishing them.

2016 – The Year of Changes

I can’t believe the entire year has gone by and I haven’t written a blog post yet! But I have a good excuse, really! This has been a super busy year for me and I feel like I’m flat on my face sometimes. Also, most of my “Life Updates” get published on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Snapchat. It’s what my family uses these days so it makes it a more viable source of communication. But I still want to blog here. I’ve kept a blog since 1999 (before I called it a blog). Anyways, here I am now, spending New Year’s Eve blogging 🙂

It has truly been a year of changes. Not just for myself and close family, but it seems for the world as well.

Let’s take a look at some major events this year:

  1. Donald Trump became President of the United States (is this real life?)
  2. Carrie Fisher (aka Princess Leia) and her mother die within 1 day of each other
  3. Dakota Access Pipeline Protests
  4. Wells Fargo phony account scandal comes to light
  5. Pebble Watch company surprisingly go out of business
  6. The EM Drive might be a real thing
  7. Gravitational waves detected
  8. And more…. but I want to move on because this blog is about more personal matters.

Personal life changes in 2016:

  1. Our twin boys are born on Jan 3rd (first time parents!)
  2. My father in law passed away unexpectedly in February
  3. I hire my first full-time employee (D3FY Development Group – www.d3fy.com)
  4. We bought our first car (minivan)
  5. We moved to Tucson along with most of Erin’s siblings
  6. My sister opens up about having a girlfriend
  7. My brother lives and works in another country for the first time in his life
  8. My dad’s best friend, and long-term family friend tragically passed away
  9. We got a second dog (kind of adopted from a family member)

All in all – it has been an eventful year. Top it off with raising twin babies amongst all of this and it has definitely been a busy year full of changes!

Change is good. Hardships are good. This year I have grown a lot in ways I didn’t know I needed to grow in! I’ve been pushed to my emotional and physical limits as a new parent, family man, and business owner. I had no idea I could operate on such little sleep (thanks to raising newborn twins) while having to execute important tasks throughout the day within my business. Thank you especially to my wife and best friend Erin – for all she does to raise our kids. I help out, but she is da real MVP. 

Raising children is a labor of love – of which I humbly admit I was ignorant to how hard it was. I would compare raising a child to that of summiting a mountain. Both push your limits and help you grow spiritually as a result. The mental challenge of both seem to trigger the same emotions in my heart and soul.

Well I don’t have time to go into every detail on that list I made above – it’s about 12am and time to do a quick countdown…. 5..4..3..2..1..


In 2016, my “Life Theme” was to work more efficiently. I can happily say that I’ve done that. I am much better at finishing work around 5 or 6pm and I hardly work late hours anymore. I’ve learned to focus on the most important things and leave out the rest. And not just in business, in life too. I can’t take all the credit. Children and family responsibilities have forced me to get efficient or crash and burn. If only I could take the self-control and introspection I’ve gained now and apply it back when I was in my 20’s, hahaha…. ha… ha.. um yeah don’t we all. Life is good just the way it is – if you learn to smell the roses.

Okay so this year – 2017 – my Life Theme is going to be:

Taking action having personal mindfulness.

Meaning being aware of my own true desires and acting on them. One of the biggest struggles of my life is my lack of confidence about my own abilities and desires. This one thing has kept me from achieving goals which I have wished to have, and although I’m very capable of achieving them, I did not. My struggle in life isn’t that I can’t do it, it’s that I don’t do it because I think I can’t. This leaves my heart feeling sad and recognize it as the next step in my interpersonal progression.

So I’m going to fuel my belief that I CAN do it. This goal includes how I treat others as well. Being mindful about my own emotions, and also being mindful about other’s own emotions.

Looking forward to writing more blog posts this year. I miss doing it. I’d really like to start blogging more often.

What are your hopes and dreams for 2017 going to be? What will your Life Theme be?

P.S. I’ve also updated the theme of this blog to the new WordPress 2017 theme. I also spent about 30 minutes finding old photos to put as the header image – which was a lot fun to go through and reminisce about.

Crunch Time

It’s crunch time. And not just because the snow outside is getting crunchy on the sidewalk. I’m talking about learning how to do MORE with LESS.

I’m faced with a lot to do in front of me. A lot because I’m choosing it. Choosing to get a Master’s Degree, choosing to run a business, and choosing to consider getting a job (putting the business on hold will give me more free time, but that also means making applications and resumes and more work in the beginning). 
The Master’s degree is a job in an of itself. Taking the GRE, getting letters of referral, writing a letter of intent, etc. Deadline to apply is Dec. 15th. But that’s for next year’s program. Which means I have to do a lot starting now. I must prepare for the GRE really fast. Not exactly how I wanted to be spending the next 4 weeks, but in the long run it will pay off.
I’m going to cancel my road trip to Arizona this week as well. I don’t want to do that, but I know that AZ will be there when the next road trip comes along.
The next 30 days are going to be busy. I’m going to have to balance my time better, do more in less time, and deal with the stress of it all. I lost sleep last night just thinking about it. But it can be done. I’m pretty laid back most of the time, so learning to work fast and efficient should be a healthy challenge.