Category Archives: Uncategorized

A Dream Come True…

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“…and I’ve seen the promised land! I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight that we as a people will get to the promised land.”

Help Wanted

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Coldwell Banker agent Dian Hymer needs some help. She is suffering from cancer and needs a bone marrow transplant. According to InMan, an initial run of the National Marrow Donor Program registry showed no matches.

I don’t know Dian, but I do know that somewhere out there is someone who can help.

You may be a match. Registering for the program is simple- register now.

 

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

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‘Now, I’ll tell you what, my friend,’ said Scrooge, ‘I am not going to stand this sort of thing any longer. And therefore,’ he continued, leaping from his stool, and giving Bob such a dig in the waistcoat that he staggered back into the Tank again; ‘and therefore I am about to raise your salary!’

-A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

My Thanksgiving Feast

          

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(originally posted Nov.22, 2006) 

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year. It’s all about family and friends and just being thankful for everything that we have. I don’t really care about the pilgrims and indians or any of that- for me it’s simply a time to take pause and remember our blessings.

Most holidays have become so commercialized they’ve taken on new meanings for people. I like all of the holidays, but Thanksgiving is just special.

Christmas becomes about the gifts and the tree, Easter is about the hunt or the dress or the basket of goodies, Halloween is about the costumes and decorations, New Year’s about the party, St Patrick’s about the bar, Valentines about the gift, The Fourth of July is about the fireworks, but Thanksgiving… it’s about the feast. The gathering of family and friends. Where we sit down together, watch a football game or play family games and experience life together, even if for only a little while.

I am thankful- This year more than ever. Here are a few things I am thankful for…

My huge family of beautiful, healthy children and the most wonderful wife imaginable. At the end of the day I get to come home to a full house and hear laughter, love and a lot of very annoying noises.

The rest of my family. Most people have fun stories about how disfunctional their families are, but I don’t have any drunk uncles, one-legged cats or abusive parents. My family is boringly perfect. I’m amazed and overwhelmed by the abundance I have been surrounded with my whole life.

Great friends. One of my greatest fortunes has been my ability to hang around the right people. Some of my closest friends have been in my life since we were kids. Some came into my life later, but I feel like I’ve known them forever- and their friendsip and loyalty is amazing.

            

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I’m thankful to have my company. A company is all about people, and this one has good people doing good things. I’m excited for our future together. The experience of starting my own company. Having success, failure, pressure, excitement, anxiety, experience, passion, drive, vulnerability, and the craziness that comes along with a start-up is trying but worth it.

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My teams- The Colts, the Utes and the Jazz. Sports give me a break from life and it’s always fun to cheer on your team as they’re kicking some butt.

     

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Living in Utah, and the west, where there’s room to stretch your legs a bit and take road trips without traffic. I’m thankful for America and the freedom I enjoy. Being able to voice frustration about, and make fun of, our politicians and leaders- that alone makes this country pretty great.

I’m not religious, but I’m spiritual and I’m thankful for God and my life and the the air in my lungs. I’m thankful for this world and even though it’s getting smaller it’s still pretty darn big to me- I have a lot to see.

Some things off the top of my head that I am thankful for;

My home, Sundays, the rain, a good cup of coffee, karma, a margarita with nachos, Hana, Orion, comedies, the smell of fresh-baked bread, one-on-one conversations, hotel bars, enthusiasm, and those people who have helped me when I needed it most in my life- Ed, Dougan, Debbie- Thank you.

I hope you all have a fun and safe holiday with those you love. Cheers!

Lynn Richards

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In memory…

Crime Rates Per State

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Looking at the crime rates in different states, Utah looks like a pretty safe place to live.

How safe is your state?

Spring Cleaning Checklist

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Ahh, the air is crisp and the birds are singing outside. The sunlight is getting warmer, clothing is getting lighter, and nature comes out of it’s hibernation. What a great time of year…

 If you’re planning on doing a good deep-clean on your home, here is a checklist and reminder list for you.

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Kitchen

-Refrigerator, throw away outdated food, clean shelves and drawers, pull it out and get behind it, vacuum grill and coil

-Cabinets- take dishes and pans out, clean shelves and doors, reorganize to make best use of space

-Run the dishwasher empty, with vinegar or baking soda

-Deep-clean ovens and microwave

-Dust off pictures, paintings, shelving, decorations, ceiling fans

-Scrub and polish floors

-Wipe down walls with warm water

-Clean windows

-Clean out hood vent, wash filter

-Clean out freezer, discard unwanted items

Tip- Use newspaper instead of paper towels to wash windows- it reuses the newspaper and scrubs the windows more effectively

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Laundry

-Clean behind washer and dryer

-Unattach dryer hose and clean lint from inside and around

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Bathrooms

-Deep-scrub tubs and sinks

-Clean out drawers, re-organize

-Discard unused cosmetics and medications

-Clean around toilets

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Throughout House

-Move furniture to clean behind and underneath, vacuum cushions

-Take rugs outside and beat dust out of them, then vacuum

-Take down paintings and pictures, clean them and behind them

-Wipe down walls with warm water

-Take down light fixtures and clean them

-Shake rugs

-Wash trash cans

-Clean behind and dust off electronic devices

-Check and replace light bulbs with energy efficient bulbs

-Wipe down plants with damp cloth

-Change batteries in smoke detectors

-Shampoo carpets and rugs/ polish hardwood

-Steam-clean upholstery

-Reseal grout

-Vacuum out vents

-Take books off shelves, clean shelves, wipe down books

-Polish wood furniture and banisters

-Strip and re-wax vinyl or linoleum floors

-Wash windows and screens

-Replace cold weather bedding, (wash and put away) for warm weather bedding

-Organize and clean out closets

-Take out warm-weather clothing, clean and store away

-Gather unwanted/unused toys and items to give to charity

-Clean and organize storage areas and attic

-Use WD-40 to lubricate door and window hinges

-Polish hardware on doors, windows and drawers

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Outside

-Clean out gutters and window wells

-Aerate and fertilize lawns

-Turn soil in gardens

-Clean outdoor furniture

-Wash lighting fixtures

-Spray down outside of house and wash dirty areas with soapy water

-Scrub cement areas with thick outdoor broom and soapy water

-Wash patio and porch walls and ceilings

-Re-paint or stain wood decks and fences

-Check and replace hot tub and swimming pool filters

Happy Love Day

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What a wonderful day to take inventory of all the love we are surrounded with. Some people look at Valentine’s Day as a superfluous holiday, not to be confused with the real holidays. Well, when you are truly in love, this is a great day. Not only is this a perfect excuse to pamper your precious other, but it’s fun to see the kids make their little Valentine boxes for school where they can give and receive little notes from everyone in the class, with candy, of course.

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 So, what to get that special someone for Valentine’s Day?

Gift Basket

Candy

Flowers

Dinner and a Movie

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Teddy Bear

Rent a movie and stay in for the night

Jewelry

Pajamas

Weekend getaway

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Poetry

Card

Toys (ahem)

Games

Balloons and flowers to their work

Limo ride to a night out

Spa Day

Lingerie

Proposal

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Love Certificate

Massage

Housekeeping Service

Evening walk holding hands

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Kisses

Eternity Bracelet

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Wine

Hot air balloon ride

Or I suppose there are thousands of gift ideas. Maybe just being around is the best gift of all. What do you love?

For the history of Valentine’s Day click HERE.

Acheiving Success

 

“You’ve achieved success in your field when you don’t know whether what you’re doing is work or play.” – Warren Beatty

Ah, Success! We all want it- countless books are written about it, companies strive for it, athletes push their bodies to exhaustion and celebrities go days without eating for it, yet most people have no idea what it truly is. 

What does it mean to be successful?

The question, of course, does not have a correct answer because the answer is different depending on who you ask. But most many people do not know what success is to them. I mean, really have a clear definition or goal. So, since this is my blog I will tell you what success (in business) is to me.

To me, success means to grow and excel in your highest and best use, maintaining your values, and be well-rewarded for your efforts.

   

Growth is an imperative part of success. Growth is one’s trajectory. The result of vision, effort, direction, and goals. It inspires us to leap beyond ourselves and become better. The energy we realize from our growth fuels our creativity and gives us purpose. In my opinion this is one of the most over-looked, yet critical, pieces of success.

   

Excellence is the standard to which we hold ourselves. Without it, people settle. It is surprising to me how many people go day to day without giving themselves a benchmark. Show up to work, punch in, do my time, punch out, go home. Living for the weekend. Working to live instead of living to work. As though you can only do one or the other. Others discover how great it is to push themselves at what they do and become great in the process. When we excel in our work our work is no longer a job.

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Finding our highest and best use is so critical to being successful because it gives us the environment to achieve our success. To excel in mediocrity is hollow and unrewarding. Imagine Martin Luther King spending his life working as an accountant. He might have been good at it, but would he have been able to succeed the way he ultimately did? Think of the loss it would have meant. Imagine John Lennon as a school bus driver. He may have been great with kids and become the best in his district, but would he have felt the success he did? These are two obvious and extreme examples, but both of these men found their highest and best use and found a success they otherwise could not have found, regardless of their proficiency at other work. The environment in which we place ourselves  makes a significant contribution to our success.

            

We each have our own set of values, and while most of us agree on certain ways of conducting ourselves and morals we adhere to, there are myriad opinions about what is proper, appropriate and right. Some attractive women use their good looks to market themselves and feel it is only using their strengths while others think that is cheap and tacky. Some believe working twelve-hour days before going home to a wife and children is putting in a solid day’s work, while others may think this schedule is selling out your family, while others may feel that twelve hours is not enough. Our internal gauge of morality and values give us the boundaries we need to keep ourselves feeling right about what we do, and without doing what is right we cannot be successful.

 

Reward gives us the sense of accomplishment that validates our success. And reward can be in so many forms. Financial reward with paychecks, salaries and bonuses. Maybe you are rewarded with perks, like free things or being introduced to people you admire. Reward is having fun at work and friends. Reward is time off to some, or maybe to you it means more responsibility, as in a promotion or advancement. It can be a pat on the back, or a “good job” from someone you like or admire. Maybe it’s having a title that you value. Maybe reward is spiritual to you, and you feel rewarded spiritually doing what you do. Maybe it’s sacrifice or charity. Participation in a worthy goal, being part of a winning team and the comraderie that you can only get in a group. Maybe it means being respected or acheiving professional fame. Or personal fame. Maybe you strive for celebrity or popularity. Whatever reward means to you, without it you won’t be successful.

Those in my company and family know the reasons I have for leaving the very comfortable position I previously held to start my company, BlueRoof.com, and all of my reasons can be found in this post.

For me, one of the best things about being around successful people is hearing their stories. People that are successful have passion for their success and usually have some incredible stories to tell. And when I listen to their stories I grow, and so begins my success

…and the home of the brave…

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Photo by Jim Lowney