I have decided to join in the time honored (and ridiculed) tradition of compiling a top ten list to close out 2008. The following is my Top Ten Events Of 2008 That Affected Me. Read on and enjoy the memories (unless you had no idea any of this happened in which they would not be a memory but more like an announcement which you can still enjoy just not as a memory). The list is in chronological order.

  1. I followed through with an idea I had toyed with for a long time and self-published a book of stories, blurbs and drawings. Digital technology finally allowed me to design and produce my own tome, sold ridiculously cheap (Shameless Plug Alert) here. Although it was self published, there was a sense of fulfillment that accompanied the process and I was happy with the end product.
  2. In February I was informed by my dermatologist that I had a cancerous melanoma on my right calf. It was caught in the early stages and, after surgery, all traces were removed. Having the word cancer and your name riding the same sentence together is disconcerting, no matter how reassuring the doctors were when describing it to me.
  3. Our family took two trips in the summer and both were memorable. In late May the whole family flew to California to attend Laura’s graduation from Calvary Chapel Bible College. My brother and his family joined us and we spent a long weekend touring, eating and laughing. (Pictures are here.) At the end of the summer we all attended my parents 50th wedding anniversary celebration in Tennessee. Over 50 family members from all over the U.S. attended and we had a great time. We capped off the visit with a memorial service for my grandmother who had passed away in the spring just a few days shy of her 103rd birthday. (Pictures from that week are here.)
  4. In June, Florida State sent their baseball team to the College World Series for the first time in several years. Although the team didn’t last long in Omaha, it was fun to follow them during the year and finally be rewarded for a great season.
  5. In July I left Taproot Creative and took a job with the state as a designer for The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. After toiling in the private sector it was a bit of a shock to the system to lurch back into the public sector side of life. It was not the easiest decision I ever made but, ultimately, it was the right one. I am still an emotional part of Taproot and was rewarded with the traditional Taproot shirt this past week. That made me feel good.
  6. I discovered Twitter. Come, follow me and join the inanity of the next social media “App of the Week.” For some reason I enjoy sending out the tweets and reading other folks short bursts of blab.
  7. Hope’s mother passed away in September after a lengthy battle with a number of health issues. Hope was her primary care giver and was a marvelous example of being a daughter to the end. (I wrote about it here.)
  8. Thanks to my friend Ron, I discovered the fun of trail riding on bikes this past fall. He allowed me to use his old bike and I have really enjoyed our weekend rides on the various trails around Tallahassee. I was even inspired to ride home from work on Tuesdays and Thursdays. It has been nice to discover a way to get off the sofa that does not involve a gym membership.
  9. My youngest son had his first solo gig as a singer/songwriter this past November when he was asked to perform at Ilations, a Friday night gathering sponsored by one of the local churches. He sang five original songs and I was chief videographer (results here) and proud dad. The second part of that was a lot easier than the first. More to come, I am sure.
  10. The year closed out with the engagement of our oldest son to his girlfriend two days before Christmas. It was a very special night that I was thrilled to be a part. I chronicled it in detail here, including a video of the event.

As you wave goodbye to 2008, fasten your seat belt for 2009 and prepare to enjoy...


William Colle said...

number 10? Wow I got some work to do for next year!

Jaysephus said...

Reread the first paragraph: The list is in chronological order.

Ron Nieto said...

Thanks for the props...and for being a riding partner. Let's keep it up this year.