Many many years ago I was at a party at a friend’s house. She is a theatre type and she had lots of theatre type friends. The type of people who would spontaneously burst into song.
I think it was her birthday or perhaps just a random gathering. But on this occasion they predictably ended up belting out show tunes.
It’s quite an experience being in a small living room full of professional singers singing at full belt.
One particular song stuck in my head – Seasons of Love from Rent. The song is about how there are 525,600 minutes in a year but asks how you can measure it. Besides being impressively sung, it stuck in my head because until that point I’d never thought about the year in terms of minutes.
Five hundred and twenty five thousand, six hundred minutes seems like a heck of a lot of minutes. Particularly when you look back at years and wonder what you actually did with those minutes.
When I think that I’m now in my 41st year of life that’s a lot of minutes I’ve used up. And with any luck I’m also nearing halfway.
The inspiration behind this blog – My1440 – was the idea that I was going to be a bit more conscious about the minutes in my day. All one thousand four hundred and forty of them.
As I approached 12 months since my life change I started to think about how well I’ve spent my 525,600 minutes. It certainly seems to have gone fast and I didn’t think I’ve done as much as I would have liked. I’m probably more conscious of time though, especially as I’m doing more varied things now that I’m not in an office 8hrs a day.
I thought it would be worth looking back at what I’ve actually done.
So in the last 12 months I have:
Started Mountain Biking
I don’t know why I hadn’t considered mountain biking before. I used to love road bikes but just couldn’t hack it riding around Enfield. Buying a Mountain Bike was great and I’ve loved riding it. I’ve also now upgraded to a full suspension bike and have ridden the new one even more. Sebastian has also started to really enjoy cycling and we’ve been able to go on some great bike rides including laps of Silverstone Grand Prix circuit.
‘Raced’ Some Cars
I’m still a huge Aston Martin fan but getting behind the wheel of different super cars and race cars has been incredible. Having the chance to push them hard around a race track has been a great experience. The most memorable was certainly the F1000 – the closest I’ve got to an F1 car so far.
Learned to Trade
I started learning to trade stocks both through seminars and online training. I’ve not yet done much trading but I’m getting an understanding of how it works, something I’ve wanted to do for years.
I’ve lost count of the number of times we’ve now been to Italy. We always love it and decided quite early into my time off that it would be nice for Louise and I to learn Italian together. We’ve now learned enough to better understand what’s being said, order food, ask for directions and tell someone where we come from and who’s in our family.
We spent Easter in Australia which was a nice time of year to visit. We also got to celebrate my nephew’s first birthday and spend time with family and friends.
Celebrated Being Married for 10 Years
That’s over five million two hundred and fifty six thousand minutes! Eeek. With our new found language skills we decided to go to Sardinia, in Italy, just the two of us to celebrate. It was a great opportunity to practice our Italian but also spend time together just as a couple. Something that doesn’t happen too often. The Costa Smeralda was and is amazing. We also had perhaps the most amazing and memorable meal ever while there and there were no Michelin stars in sight.
Visited the Isle of Wight
Because Louise was pregnant over the summer we were limited with our travel options so decided to visit the Isle of Wight. It was nice to get away but was a good reminder of why we usually have our summer holiday in Europe as it rained all week.
Written for Cherubs Magazine
Following on the writing theme it’s been great to write for a printed magazine, Cherubs, for their last 5 editions. I write about Dad stuff and just give a different perspective on parenting.
Learnt About the World of Crypto Currency
Crypto is something that I’m sure will have a massive influence on currency in the future. So it was good to get a hands on understanding of how a small part of it works consulting for a company going through a fund raising process.
Studied Wine in Bordeaux
I find wine fascinating. It’s an amazing mix of art and science that creates something unique, complex and evolving in a bottle. At this stage this course is one of the things that may have the biggest impact on what I do in the future. What has started out as an interest in just knowing more about wine and has resulted in scoping new business opportunities in the wine trade. So watch this space and check out www.gettasting.com in the meantime.
Done Family Stuff
Part of being a ‘stay at home Dad’ over the last year has meant picking up and dropping off my son at school. It’s nice to be able to do small things like this. I also get to take him to Football training each week, something I couldn’t do if I was working.
Acquired a Daughter
Although last, this is by no means the least significant event. For those who’ve followed our story we’ve had some disappointment over the past few years with child loss. It sucks, but Tessa is certainly our rainbow. And such a gorgeous one. We were a little worried that we’d forgotten what to do with a newborn but it’s mostly coming back. Tessa is settling in well to life in the Suttie family and is infinitely loved.
I’m sure I’ve missed things but I can certainly say I’ve done a lot. And many things that I wouldn’t have normally been able to do.
So going back to the song. If I were to measure the year on the range of different things I’d done it would rate pretty highly. But perhaps more importantly it’s been about family. And family is all about love.
How do you measure a year?