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Dogs, Exercise, Hiking

Post from the Pup…Brooks

July 22, 2012

Well Brooks has been a busy man lately.  Tons of napping and trying out all sorts of new sleeping positions.  Sometimes I would like to be as well rested as my dog.  In between all this napping he did decide to write another post.  It takes him a bit with the paws as you can imagine.


Hey everyone! It’s me Brooks. It has been a little while since I last updated you on the life of your favorite Labrador. Jon and I recently went on an amazing hike and thought I would share my thoughts on our day.

We got up pretty early on a Sunday morning a few weeks ago. I will always get up as early as you want since I am so well rested during the day. Jon got me in the car and had a backpack, so I knew were up to something tremendous. I love car rides. Shotgun!

We rode in the car up to Stone Mountain. And I got to meet up with my girlfriend Lady. Mountains, dogs, rivers, smells, running and  swimming. I almost passed out in excitement.

We started on a path up to the top of the mountain. I saw lots of squirrels and marked as many trees as I could. I kept looking up at Jon to tell him, “this is awesome.” We made it to the top of the mountain! And I found some mud to roll in below. When you see mud puddles, aren’t you supposed to sit in them? That is what I do.

We made our way to some pretty amazing streams for lunch. I couldn’t contain myself with all the water. 

I cleared out all stick hazards from the swimming hole. Can’t have that. Or you could argue that I love sticks.

I got to spend some time sliding down these rocks with everyone. I was crushing it on all fours right into the water. I could be a pro rock skier.

It really was an amazing day out in the nature. I could tell Jon had a blast too. We had needed a little time to catch up in the outdoors. I still don’t understand why we don’t live on a river or in the mountains. It sure would be nicer for me with all the smells and water. Maybe one day. 

We had a nice ride home in the car. And boy was I tired when we got home. Wow. I went directly to bed even when it was still light out.

It was great catching up and updating you with a post from the pup. Ha! I know many of you were dying to get an update from me. Well, it has been about 30 minutes since my last nap, so I feel another one coming. I am going to have to sign off for now. Have a great week.

Dogs, Hiking, Uncategorized

My 24 Hour Internet Holiday

July 1, 2012

Ever feel like you can’t get away from all your devices and the rush of information on the internet?  I sure feel that way sometimes and have been working on setting some more boundaries.  One practice I am working on is a quarterly 24 hour internet holiday.  So how does it work?


Well I decided that I wanted to give myself time away from the internet for one full day every quarter.  That means no email, no internet, no website surfing, no blogging, etc.  I still allowed myself to use the phone and text but that was it. And it was a little difficult to do at first.

So what did I do on my internet holiday?  Well it started around 9pm last Saturday night. I was able to relax at home and finally get into a great book without interruption. Two of my best friends (Nikki and North) were camping up at Stone Mountain that weekend, so I decided to meet them for a hike on Sunday morning. When I woke up I defaulted to grabbing my iPhone to check email and had to put it down. It made me realize how much email and the constant flood of information can manage me sometimes. I made some Peanut Butter sandwiches (with bananas and honey…my favorite) and got Brooks in the car. He was ecstatic about my internet holiday. He was like wow, we get to go hiking and Dad is not praying all the time (me looking down at my iPhone).

Here is me and Brooks at the top.

I just love seeing Brooks with that big smile. I think we will have to follow up this post with Brooks giving his own account of the day. He had his little girlfriend Lady to run around with all day. Another dog, waterfalls, smells, mountains, trees…it was doggy heaven on Sunday.

He especially loved the hour we spent going down this rock water slide. Pretty funny video below of him following me down.

About an hour into the hike I told my friends that it was so nice to only be worrying about whether I had enough water or food or where we were going next. I wasn’t worried about someone returning an email or the thousand tasks I thought I had to get done. I was just enjoying being present in nature.

Nikki is pretty excited for our first stream crossing!

North enjoying one of the best parts of a hike. Sandwich time!

And we even squeezed in a little yoga time.  haha.

Our day made me re-think whether I believe that “time flies when you are having fun.” On my way home, I couldn’t believe it was only 5pm.  It felt like I had experienced something that lasted for several days, and I felt so refreshed. So I think time actually slows down when you create space to just relax and be in the moment. When my head wasn’t caught up in so many thoughts or tied up in the future, I could actually be “here.” It was an amazing feeling.

The day was also just another example about how important it is for me to be out in nature. The restorative effects of the outdoors sure are amazing, and I will have to get out on a hike again soon.  A friend out in California told me about this book on the subject that sounds very interesting, and it is at the top of my reading list.

I ended up capping the day off with an awesome dinner with a good friend. When I finally checked email the next morning, I didn’t really miss much. A few issues had actually worked themselves out, and I didn’t even have to reply. The experience of an internet holiday coupled with a hike just made me feel more whole and rejuvenated. Have a tremendous week.





Dogs, Family

An update from Brooks

April 1, 2012

Well back by popular demand is another post from my Labrador, Brooks. A lot of people were a little concerned for him when I downsized from 1700 to 700 sq ft. How would he handle it and is he doing ok? Amazingly enough, he was able to type another post below.  Enjoy.

 Hey guys, its me Brooks again. Finally, I get a chance to write another post. Thanks to everyone for wishing me luck in the new apartment. Losing a big yard sure is never easy and nice to know I have so many fans out there. At least Jon sure thinks I do.

The move has been a lot of fun. It was definitely very new at first being in a smaller space. However, I can always see where Jon is now, and he can’t really hide from me which I love. Sometimes I thought he was trying to sneak out if he went to another part of the house. I was also sure he had a secret trap door in the bathroom, so I knocked (scratched with my paw) whenever he went in there.

So I really think life is getting better all the way around. Sure I miss the big yard, but now Jon takes me for walks at morning and at night. Jon didn’t walk me that much when we were in the house since I always had the yard. We now walk to get groceries and even go in a really fun coffee shop called FABO Cafe. They always give me treats in there which I love. That’s me below with my British friend Winston.

Sometimes people leave crumbs from their muffins on the coffee shop floor which is completely awesome. I am like a little labrador vacuum. My situ (grandma) sometimes calls me Hoover. Hey, don’t leave food on the ground unless you want it gone! Brooks will clean it up!

When Jon leaves in the morning, I still have a really FULL schedule for most of the day. My napping keeps me pretty slammed.

 I hang out most of the day in the sun room. I love all the light and watching all the people go by. I bark at some people but only to tell them I would love to play frisbee if they are free. I hang in Jon’s recliner and listen to classical music on 89.9. I am a Renaissance dog just like Jon is a Renaissance man. Bach for Brooks! That just made Jon laugh.

 We have even taken some really fun trips lately. I got to ride all 10 hours with Jon to Florida to see Situ, Jitu, Uncle Hunter and my brothers Marko and Champ. I think riding in a car is so amazing. And for 10 hours? It was heaven. I even got to swim in the ocean while I was home. As you can see below, I could do that all day!

So life has been really good lately. I am getting more exercise even though we moved to a smaller space. And Jon sure seems happier. I know he loves this blog and connecting with all of you about it. So come on by our new place or join us for a walk. And it never hurts to bring me a treat!

Lots of Licks, 


Dogs, Leadership, Running

Where do new ideas come from?

February 24, 2012

I was having lunch with a good friend the other day, and she was joking that it seems everyone’s best ideas always come to them in the shower.  I started to think about this some more, because I am fascinated with how we come up with new ideas. For me, it always has something to do with being more present in my life.

So, lets think about this shower example.  Unless you have a waterproof case or special shower, you don’t have a phone, tv or computer in the shower.  No technology for the most part like mine below.

So, without all the distractions and mass of information coming at us, something like being in the shower can make us more present with our lives.  People can just be who they are.  And when people just be who they are, their best stuff seems to come to the surface.

How else can we take time to just be present and take time for ourselves? Some of my best ideas come on a jog or just relaxing on the couch with some music and no TV. Or a taking walk with my dog. I focus on that amazing feeling of just being outside and observing the trees, the sounds and the sky.

I am trying to do less of what I used to do which was walking at night with a flashlight duck taped to a hat, book in hand, headphones on and dog leash wrapped around my waist.  Probably a little too much going on, and my neighbors thought I was a little weird.  haha.

I did create a learning goal around this concept of taking more time to be present that I thought I would share:

“Be mindful of taking time for myself so I can learn, grow and deeply connect with others.”

A few of my measurables:

-At least three walks a week outside of my normal exercise regiment.

-Meditate three times a week.

-I will take an internet holiday once a quarter.  Essentially, a 24 hr break from all technology except phone calls in case of an emergency.  No tv, internet, text, social media, etc.

I also want to eat more meals where I just enjoy my food and each bite. So many times I have a meal with the iPad, book or something else going on and forget I am even eating. A good friend sent me this video that I used as my new food motto now: “Enjoy Every Sandwich.” It helps me slow down when I feel like I am running too much.

So where do your best ideas come from? I would love to hear what works for you or makes you more present in your life! Maybe you can even join me on one of my quarterly internet holidays!  Have a great weekend.

Breakfast, Dogs, Exercise, Food, Running

Why Should I Run?

November 13, 2011

So I just got back from a short run and feel great. I always kick myself because the hardest part about running seems to be getting out there. This morning I had all kinds of excuses and they usually go something like this below. I decided to respond to my own excuses as well.

morning runner

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Dogs, Exercise, Family, Leadership, Running

A Guest Post from a Dog?

November 7, 2011

So I thought I would change things up a bit and invite my Labrador, Brooks, to write the first guest post. Yes, I am way over the top about my dog. However, Brooks has been a huge part of my life over the last 4.5 years.  He keeps me balanced and brings endless laughter, love and joy to my life. And all he wants in return is to be around me. Can you imagine jumping up and down to see someone every time they leave for two minutes? I really believe he makes me a better person. So without further ado, lets turn it over to Brooks.

brooks on floor with pic frame

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