Screen Free Week: 10 fun ways to break away

People are often surprised when I say I rarely watch TV. Even more so when I say I don’t have cable or a satellite dish.

But years ago I heard a shocking statistic that convinced me to turn off the television. It’s on my mind now because it’s Screen Free Week, formerly TV Turnoff Week.

Here’s the stat: By the time most Americans reach the age of 65, they will have watched an average of nine years of sitcoms, reality TV, soap operas, crime dramas and other shows. Nine years. Continue reading

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Hunt the good stuff: What beagles and the Army have in common

During a typical weekend, I don’t think much about beagles or the Army, but this weekend, they both sent a similar message.

First, the beagles.

As Mark and I started out on a Saturday hike, we noticed two friendly beagles romping around the visitors center. We overheard the ranger say they lived nearby. About 15 minutes into our hike, we realized they were following us.

Continue reading

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12 ways to have fun in 2012

Bucket lists are great. They inspire us to think big and bold about all the things we want to do before we die. But as I ease into the new year, I’m more focused on all the fun stuff I want to do now, not some day.

I’m happy, healthy and hopeful right now. That may not be true some day, so there’s no better time to focus on having fun than in 2012.  I’m sharing these 12 ways I plan to have fun in 2012 in hopes of inspiring others to create and share their own ideas for fun this year. Continue reading

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What Randy Pausch taught me

Randy Pausch is one of the inspirations for this blog. He’s the Carnegie Mellon professor who celebrated life’s beauty and brevity in his “Last Lecture.”

He wrote the speech for his three young children and delivered it to a crowd of 400 weeks after a terminal cancer diagnosis. Thanks to Wall Street Journal coverage and a YouTube video, his message reached tens of millions.

Bubbling with humor and optimism, he shared stories of how he achieved his childhood dreams, then urged his audience: “Never lose the child-like wonder.”

While I’m still finding my voice with this new blog, that’s at the core of what Fun Every Day is all about. When we’re young, everything is new and fun–and there’s so much joy in the discovery. Continue reading

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Catch a shooting star tonight!

star trails during meteor shower
Star trails during meteor shower by JcOlivera via Flickr

The fleeting glimpse of a single shooting star sends my neck craning skyward in hopes of another. The promise of multiple meteors an hour calls for breaking out a backyard Barcalounger.

Beginning overnight tonight, the Orionids could deliver a stellar show in the southeast sky. This annual October meteor shower will likely show its peak streaks in the wee hours of Friday and Saturday. In places free from city lights, shooting stars might be visible after midnight, but the best viewing time is between 4 a.m. and sunrise.

While a waning moon may dampen a bit of this year’s drama, EarthSky says it will also help highlight planet Mars.

I’m setting a coffee maker and alarm clock for 4:30 a.m. to give this star party a go.

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Hanging up on Miss Manners

I woke up yesterday thinking about my friend Lisa. We live several states away and hadn’t talked in more than a year. I thought it would be fun to call her.

Then I remembered a New York Times article that celebrated the demise of the telephone: “Phone calls are rude. Intrusive. Awkward.” Miss Manners agreed.

Better just to check her Facebook status…

Liking her latest update was no replacement for hearing her voice, or better yet, her laugh. I pulled up her number, but didn’t press send. What if she’s in the middle of something? What if she doesn’t feel like talking? What if she’s mad because we haven’t talked in so long? What if she agrees with Miss Manners?

That’s when I thought: How would I feel if she called me? Continue reading

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Americana music fills the soul

Music has always been one of my favorite forms of fun, and I have my friend Jym to thank for introducing me to Americana music.

Nearly a decade ago, he insisted we go see a couple of shows at The Birchmere: Marty Stuart and Buddy & Julie Miller. I’d never heard of them, but I trusted his ear for music. Both shows still rank among my favorites for raw vocal emotion and the power of storytelling through song. Continue reading

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A morning to treasure

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” -Marcel Proust

Most Tuesdays, I walk with a friend named Ashley Segroves. She’s a photographer and seems to snap at least one photo on our morning walks. When she called last night to say she wasn’t feeling well, I thought maybe I’d sleep in, too.

Instead, I got up and took a camera as my walking partner. Continue reading

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So bad, it’s good!

BadFads.comI’m always game to start a Monday with a chuckle, and this digital museum of short-lived trends fits the silly bill.

Cringe-inducing photos fill the Fashion section, hitting the obvious (leisure suits, anyone?) to the obscure (so glad I never had to iron my hair on an ironing board.) The Collectibles page spans a ridiculous mix of useless trinkets I once owned. Mood rings? Check. Pet Rocks and virtual pets? Check, check. Troll doll? Afraid so. offers captivating chronology of fads we can only hope never come back, this site definitely captures that “so bad, it’s good” feeling. Enjoy!

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