September 29, 2008

PERFECT WORLD: Nothing says parenthood like a leaking bag of throw-up and a little blood

I am ready to be a father.

I know there are a lot of people reading this blog who think that statement is…
a.) Scary
b.) Humorous
c.) Unimaginable
d.) All of the Above
The reason why I say that….you have no idea how many people have told me – with a devilish smirk and a slow shake of the head – “I can’t WAIT until you have kids.”

I think I’ve heard that statement around 86 times – each reference with the same underlying meaning: “Don’t worry, Drew. When you’re a dad, you’ll get yours!”

Well, I’m ready to get mine.

Tanya and I have started seriously trying. (“Seriously” consists of ovulation tests, prenatal vitamins, and her screaming “hurry up and put the dog outside.”)

We’ve also been talking about the possibility of adoption. Because of our ages, our desire for a large family, and our intense desire to give back, this is a tremendous option. (Tanya’s involvement in CASA – a national child advocate program – has also helped open our eyes to the lives we can touch through this process.)

In a perfect world, we would get pregnant right now, have a summer baby, start seriously looking into adoption – possibly pull the trigger this time next year, conceive another child a year later, and have a BIG, loving family in less than three years.


“Drew, are you really sure you’re ready for that?”

It’s funny you ask.

This weekend, I received a sneak peek into my “perfect world.” I spent two days with my business partner, her husband, and their children. (Three boys – ages 4, 6 and 8.) We made a marathon trip to Oklahoma to watch TCU play the Sooners.

It was towards the end of the trip when someone made a slap-across-the-face comment to me. I think I was staring blankly at the three little boys running around their uncle’s living room like they were on fire.

“Don’t worry. If you spread them out a little bit better than we did, it’s not as overwhelming.”

Ummmm….remember earlier in the post…have baby, adopt, have another baby, adopt…BIG family…not spread out?


I think I’ll be OK, though. This weekend was a good test. Here were some of the highlights (Not to brag, but I think I scored a C+ ... which IS passing):

The six-year-old got carsick 40 minutes outside of Fort Worth.

• “Daddy can we pull over?”

• He threw up in a grocery sack just as we pulled into a Braum’s parking lot.

• The bag had hole in it and started to leak before he could make it outside the van.

• The oldest kept talking in third-person and reminding himself not to look.

• The youngest, very aware of where we were, kept asking for ice cream in the middle of the chaos.

• The sick child had to be stripped down, and he rode the rest of the trip in the seat right behind me with no shirt, a package of Wet Wipes, and a new plastic bag.

• There were no more incidents.

The site and smell of throw-up didn’t make me hurl … I think anytime someone speaks in third-person it’s hilarious (especially when that person is eight years old) … the fact that there were no other incidents was HUGE – especially because of the new seating arrangement in the van.

g g g

The youngest decided to head-butt the sidewalk.

• He actually tripped over the curb in a dimly lit parking lot and smashed his face pretty good.

• After the initial shock wore off, he realized he was injured and wanted everyone else to know it, too.

• His sweet aunt ran to his rescue.

• Even though he looked like he was in a car wreck, he was bouncing off the walls the next morning.

I saw him face plant, and while his aunt was loving him up, I just kept telling him to “shake it off” . . . when I saw the blood, I decided to let a “real adult” handle the situation . . . I also learned that kids are pretty resilient.

g g g

On our way home, we had to stop for a bathroom break 6 minutes into the trip. (That is no lie and/or exaggeration . . . 360 seconds from leaving the house.)

• As we’re pulling out of the driveway: “Did everyone use the bathroom?” . . . “Let’s see if we can make it all the way to Fort Worth without stopping!”

• Six minutes later: “Daddy, I need to use the restroom” . . . “I thought you went right before we left” . . . “I went pee pee, but I held my poo poo.”

• As they’re getting out of the car, the youngest says, “I need to go poo poo, too.”

It really wasn’t that big of deal, we had to stop anyway because in the hustle and bustle of packing up and leaving, their mother left her keys at the house. A family member was in route to deliver them . . . It made me wonder, though: Would they have continued to “hold their poo poo” all the way home OR would we have stopped a few minutes later anyway? . . . I think kids just know when to take advantage of an opportunity.

Other minor tests included a running request/inquiry to play with my cell phone, the peaks and valleys of sugar highs, and the fact that watching cartoons and playing Wii trumps Sportscenter on Sunday morning.

Here are some other things that I simply learned:

• Kids don’t sleep in – even if the adults tailgated for over five hours the day before and finally went to bed around 1 a.m.

• If you give a child under 10 years old the choice of where to eat – it’s going to be McDonald’s.

• Chocolate milk is VERY popular with young kids. (Temperature of the milk is not important.)

• If you don’t want kids to climb on the furniture – don’t buy it.

• There is always A LOT of hustle and bustle when there are kids involved.

When I told their parents that I was going to blog about me tagging along on their weekend family get-away, I saw both of them cringe.

ME: “Are you worried?”

MOM: “I just don’t want people to think we’re a crazy family.”

I wasn’t going to use the adjective “crazy” – I think “perfect” is a lot more fitting.


Gus did not disappoint on his birthday. After posting his blog – highlighted by a photo gallery of random things he has eaten – he had a monumental day.

During our morning run, we had to stop with two miles to go so he could throw-up two nice-sized rocks.

That night, while I was out and about, he decided to kill another one of his sleep pads. When I opened the door to the bedroom it looked like it had snowed. He was rolling around in the stuffing like he had accomplished the most impressive feat in the world.

Here is his handy work:

A few months ago, my mom said, "I wonder if the stuff we put in the recycle bin actually gets recycled." It was kind of a random question, but irony quickly out weighed her randomness when I received the following flyer in the mail:

Fort Worth's Environmental Management Department hosted the "Cowtown Trash Trail Field Trip" on Sept. 20, and I was there along with my curious mother.

It wasn't at all what we expected. I told anyone and everyone that I was spending my Saturday morning on a tour bus, "following a trash truck around Fort Worth."

I never saw a trash truck, but I did see behind the scenes of a multi-million-dollar industry.

We drove out to the recycle center in Arlington and watched them shuffle through the "single stream" of recycled items and sort it down to the item of the day. On this particular Saturday, we watched aluminum go through the line. (The best part of seeing mom got her question answered.)

After that, we visited the landfill in south Fort Worth. They told us how the "cells" of the landfill are constructed. They put an emphasis on how there used to be dumps and now there are strictly regulated landfills.

I just kept seeing dollar signs.

While people on our tour bus were commenting on how clean the landfill was, and how impressed they were with the new environmental standards, I kept firing off questions about the cash.

"How much does it cost to build a cell?"

"How much to you guys charge to have trash delivered here?"

"When will this particular cell be full?"

"How many cells will this particular landfill have in its lifetime?"

Did I say multi-million-dollar industry? about multi-billion-dollar!

Overall, the "Field Trip" was good. I learned a lot. Got some behind-the-scene research on some investment opportunities. But the best part of that Saturday morning was just spending it with my mom.

September 18, 2008


There are less than 100 days until Christmas.

The reason why I bring that up….that means the stress level in my family is about to be turned up several notches.

No need to re-read….I said STRESS.

It was 10 years ago when Christmas morning in the Myers family was changed forever. To help us save money, my mom suggested that we start making our Christmas gifts.

With that one neurotic idea, a magical tradition
was born.

NOTE: Its frugal intentions were quickly replaced with intense competitiveness, year-long bragging, and immeasurable stress, but that’s what makes our Christmas mornings a blessing of love and creativity.

We’ve received a recipe book from my mom, filled with all of our favorite dishes and how to make them ourselves. She has also made blankets, pillows, and journals.

My dad keeps things fun. He has given us swings (right), slingshots, and a kite.

My oldest sister, Susan, is practical and thoughtful each year. She has given time capsules, ornaments, and Family Charades, packed full of our favorite movies, books, songs, and TV shows to act out.

Allison, my youngest sister, is the essence of creativity. She has incorporated song lyrics into amazingly painted pictures, made personalized word magnets for our refrigerators, and made a family quilt with everyone’s hand print.

Even the “outsiders” have embraced the tradition.

My wife has sewed pajama pants and painted coffee mugs, while my brother-in-law made a very practical size chart
(right) with everyone’s “vitals.” (I guess to help us shop if we ever do start buying gifts again.)

Personally, I’ve tried to stretch myself in Santa’s Workshop.

I remember the first gift that I made for our unique tradition. It was a set of cards that contained simple tasks that captured some of life’s little pleasures –
e.g. reading the comics or making a banana split.

A decent idea, but not very personal.

Then I saw the power of these gifts, and it has grown into an annual opportunity for me to say “I love you.”

I’ve made a board game – putting a Myers spin on Monopoly to generate “Familyopoly.” I’ve given a video, stained glass, and a photo mosaic. I’ve
written personal columns about each member of my family, and put together 5K running and walking programs for them as well.

Last year, I let my spiritual guard down and created a daily devotional and inspirational journal. It was a unique collection of letters, photos, journal writings, quotes, and scripture.

I wanted to share my relationship with Jesus Christ.

In my introduction letter,
I wrote: “In every excerpt that I have included, I truly feel like God is alive and speaking directly to us – whether it’s a letter from Mom telling me to clean my room or a note from Dad telling me that he his proud of me.”

Almost a year later, I want to share this journal with others.

I have created a completely different blog entitled
“Hear My Whisper” where I will start posting excerpts from this devotional. I have already posted my introduction letter to kick things off. (THE FOUNDATION: My Letter)

In the letter, it says: “I’m proud of my relationship with Jesus Christ, and I want YOU to know that if something happens to me, and I’m taken from this earth, that I’m going to spend eternity in heaven.”

That’s why I’m sharing it with you.


Here is a great opportunity to give back.

2 1/2 hours every Tuesday evening, is in need of specific items.

In its recent newsletter, the following items have been listed as "Urgent Needs":
• New underwear (all sizes)
• New socks (all sizes)
• Feminine hygiene supplies
• Twin-size sheets (gently used or new)
• Towels (gently used or new)
• Toothbrushes

Based on my time in the shelter's dispensary, these items are also needed:
• Multivitamins
• Razors
• Deodorant (travel size)
• Medicated foot powder
• Q Tips
• Band Aids
• Antibiotic Ointment
• Toothpaste (travel size)
• Shampoo (travel size)
• Anti-acid

Next time you're at Target – or you drive past Dollar General – think about this opportunity to help someone not as fortunate as you.

Like I've said before, I will come and pick these items up if necessary. You just tell me when and where.

I marked No. 47 (Order a double scoop of ice cream)
off of my 101 List.

I realize this was an "easy" one, but I think it all balances out in the end. (Remember: No. 81 Take a self portrait in EVERY National Park.)

After going to the driving range with my little brother Anthony (BBBS), we stopped in at Cold Stone Creamery for a little ice cream.

Anthony was smart and stuck with a banana and strawberry smoothie, while I loaded up on a scoop of cookies and cream and a scoop of coffee-flavored ice cream.

I quickly realized why I never had a double scoop before – that's A LOT of ice cream!

No. 43 (Participate in Yoga Flow in the Japanese Garden)

Here are some of the highlights from my
seven-week class:

• The Japanese Garden is absolutely beautiful. I had NO IDEA that was tucked back there.
(Click here to see the photo gallery, which will continue to grow as my class progresses.)

• It's offered through TCU's Extended Education Program

• I'm the ONLY male in the class. It's me and approximately 25 women.

• We meet every Thursday for a little over an hour.

• I'm doing it to enhance my running. (Really helps with my flexibility.)

No. 41 (Break the 4-hour mark in a marathon)

I'm up to 18.75 miles a week with my running and will increase by 10 percent next week (20.6 miles). This is all leading up to 25 miles a week
– the recommended distance you should be running consistently when you start training for a marathon. (I should reach that in about a month – increasing mileage every other week.)

I'm eyeing the Nashville Country Music Marathon on April 25, 2009. That means I will start my 14-week training program on January 18th.

No. 80 (Eat a hot dog & drink a beer in every AL ballpark)
The 2009 Major League Baseball schedule is already out, and I've already started planning how I can be the most efficient with my time and energy – combine these trips with business trips AND other list-oriented trips.

I have started a photo gallery of all my completed tasks. (Click here to see)

I would be interested to find out who is keeping up with my 101 List.

Blogger offers a new feature entitled, "Who is Paying Attention?" It is located on the left side of my 101 List. If you are keeping up with my progress, I would love to hear about it.

September 11, 2008


(Don't worry, this post is NOT politically oriented – despite the title.)

When I started this blog, it was important for me to find a happy balance between life and business.

Over the last few months, I have written about my new business adventure, giving back in the community, and a lot of miscellaneous soap box items.

This post may actually tip the scales the other way, because I'm pulling back the "LIFE CURTAIN" and letting everyone temporarily see what's on the other side.

Just to ruin the suspense: It's a very sore and swollen face! (please see bottom right)

At the ripe age of 33, I had all four of my wisdom teeth violently yanked out of my head. (The reason I bring up my age, I've had A LOT of comments like, "I had my wisdom teeth taken out...WHEN I WAS 17!")

I wanted to briefly share my experience with everyone. I thought a few bullet points and a couple photos would do the trick. (Just to help with a time frame: My surgery was on Sept. 10th and I'm posting this blog on Sept. 11th.)

• Even though I was knocked out for the procedure, I woke up in the middle of surgery to the sound of the drill. (Don't pain, just that awful drilling noise echoing inside my skull.) The oral surgeon told Tanya that I had some strong bones and it was one of his more difficult extractions. 

• I don't remember anything from the drive home. Tanya said I immediately asked for ice cream, but that is an anesthesia blur. 

• My goal out of the gate was not to take ANY of the "hard core drugs" that were prescribed to me. I don't know if I'm the toughest man on the planet, but I've been very fortunate with the pain. The strongest drugs I've taken to this point is ibuprofen.

• Before the surgery, they show you a nifty little video about the risks, how to take care of yourself, what to expect following the procedure, blah, blah, blah. Why didn't they tell me about the blood? (More specifically, the amount of blood.) WOW! I couldn't believe how much blood I was spitting up the afternoon after the surgery. I tried to keep my face packed with gauze, but that quickly turned into a bloody mess. 
Too gross? I know.

• Even though I was still a little loopy from being knocked out – not to mention still radically bleeding – I braved the rain and watched my little brother play his first middle school football game. (Thank goodness they won!)

• The morning after the surgery, I helped Wikipedia define "swelling." The bleeding had subsided, but as my loving wife put it..."your face is so swollen, you look like John McCain." I've tried to keep cold packs close by, but there is NO DOUBT some serious trauma occurred inside my mouth.

• Eating has been interesting. It has to be soft and easy to swallow, mainly because the swelling prevents me from opening my mouth very wide. My favorite post-surgery meal has been instant mashed potatoes. My mom  offered some classic advice, though: "Any solid food you cook can be blended with gravy to make a soup."

• When I'm sick or hurt, I CAN be a big baby – but it's a choice. For some reason, I didn't want to play that card following this particular procedure. So, despite my soreness and swollen face, I started my new yoga class this morning – 24 hours after the surgery. Nothing major to report – my head didn't explode when I did downward facing dog – just wanted to prove that four extracted teeth can't slow me down.

Hopefully that's the extent of the highlights. It's been almost 36 hours since they ripped out my "wisdom," and I don't have any plans of regressing. 

Speaking of regressing ..... Have you ever heard of "dry socket?" They say that's the worst post-surgery effect. (I'm not 100 percent sure what it is, but when people describe it, they ALWAYS use the term "painful.") Needless to say, I'm scared to death of it, and I'm trying to avoid it like the plague. I'm doing EVERYTHING my little cheat sheet says to do. (Swish gently, take your antibiotics, don't drink out of a straw, don't smoke for five days, etc.)

If I can stay on course – a.k.a. avoid "dry socket" – you can close the "curtain" on this act of my life.

September 8, 2008


A couple of weeks ago I blogged about some of my friends and family members who were giving back.

I had one friend putting smiles on little faces at a local children’s hospital.

I had another friend donate some clothes to the homeless shelter.

All incredibly AWESOME and selfless acts of kindness!

There was one example of giving back that I purposely left off that list – I thought it deserved a blog post all it’s own.

My friend Kelly recently spent a week in Africa, spreading God’s word to orphans in the ravaged country of Zambia. She took part in Camp Life, which is a program created by Family Legacy Missions International.

The mission of Family Legacy Missions “is to connect the American Church and Family to the very heart of God by actively engaging them in the relief of the suffering and pain of the African AIDS Orphan.”

On its web site, the organization states: “We believe that as individuals begin to take up the cause…that a radical transformation will occur in the lives of those being touched
and those being used by God to reach out.”

After hearing Kelly’s amazing stories – and seeing her touching photo gallery – I know that vision truly has the ability to turn into reality.

I wanted to share some of the thoughts and images that stood out to me from Kelly’s spiritual adventure.

First the photos (with some of Kelly's comments):

Here are some of the highlights that stood out to me and/or tugged at my heart strings:

• How genuinely grateful the children were (besides the cup, they were also given a new pair of shoes, a fleece jacket, and a pencil.)

• How much it touched Kelly's spiritual life and impacted her relationship with Jesus Christ 

• How AIDS has completely devastated and 
practically destroyed that region of the world

• Despite the unfathomable poverty and despair of their surroundings, the spark in each of those boys' eyes is truly remarkable

• How the Word of God is able to totally annihilate ethnic and cultural barriers

I am so proud of Kelly for going on this amazing journey. She is already planning on spending two weeks in Zambia next summer, and she has inspired me to go on a mission trip as well. (My 101 List: No. 46)



Anthony, my little brother through Big Brothers Big Sisters, experienced his first 
TCU football game last Saturday. He helped cheer the Frogs to a big win against Stephen F. Austin in their 2008 home-opener.

Here are the highlights from Anthony's trip 
inside Frog Nation:

• We went on the sideline for pre-game and watched the players warm up. (Anthony was quick to tell me that the Frogs stretch just like his football team.)

• We got some snacks before finding our seats 
on the 40-yard-line. 

• We watched the Frogs crush SFA, 67-7. 

• After the game, Anthony proudly put his "Frogs" in the air and sang the TCU alma mater with the team (right).

• Then we hustled into the locker room and listened to Coach Patterson give his postgame speech.

• Probably the highlight of the night for Anthony, when he had his picture taken with Daryl Washington (right), his favorite Horned Frog. (to see all the photos click here)

A very special thanks to the TCU Football Department for making this possible for Anthony.

September 2, 2008


Have you ever played the question game?

It’s easy.

One person asks a question – or a set of questions – and another person answers them. (If you still don’t understand, you might want to stop reading because the rest of the post may literally make your brain explode.)

For some reason, this was always popular with my family and friends. We even had a book around the house when we were growing up, “The Book of Questions.”

Technology has taken the game to a whole new level.

I’m sure you’ve been forwarded an e-mail with a subject line that says something like “I want to know the real you” or “All I’ve ever wanted to know about you in 10 questions.”

Here are some of my favorites (with my answers):

Q: Would you be willing to murder
an innocent person if it would end world hunger?

A: Ummmm …. absolutely not.

Q: Would you be willing to eat a bowl
of live crickets for $40,000?

A: It really depends on the size of the bowl,
but more than likely…yes.

Q: If you could have one superpower
what would it be?

A: Duh…the ability to be invisible.

Here is one that almost always comes up:

Q: Would you rather be rich or famous?

My answer is…

First, I want to share a blurb I read in
Reader’s Digest. (Don't worry... it's relevant.) It was a collection of short features that focused on “35 People Who Inspire Us.”
It also gave a brief explanation why they made the list this particular year.

The one that really caught my eye was Maria Shriver. She spoke up after reading that kids’ main goal these days is “to be famous.” At her nephew’s graduation she shared snippets from her book, “Just Who Will You Be?”

Here are a few excerpts from her speech:

• “Famous people always seem to look happy. They always look rich. They always look thin. But whatever
it’s worth – and since I’m kind of famous, it might be worth something – fame isn’t a worthy goal. Fame can’t make you happy.”

• “The only way you can come to feel good about yourself is to find your own path. Live your own life…”

• “So ask yourself what you want to be famous for…because you can be famous for doing something great, something that matters.”

• “We need famous people with integrity, character, and vision, people who want to lead, who want to make the word a more peaceful and compassionate place.”

Great stuff!

It confirms my decision….I choose both.

Believe it or not, that has been my answer for as long as I can remember.

Now, I can’t swear my choice of being famous never included bright lights and/or the big screen and/or thousands of screaming fans holding lighters into the air and/or a silver helmet with a big blue star.

And I can’t honestly say that I didn’t want to be rich for the fancy cars and big houses.

But that has changed over the years.

I want to be rich and famous so I can make a significant difference in the world.

By no means do I feel like I’m wasting my time and/or energy with the effort I’m giving right now – but I could do so much more with a “Celebrity Badge” and hefty bank account.

So what is a self-employed entrepreneur to do?

I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing until I sign that multi-million contract with the Cowboys, or I’m stopped at the mall by a Hollywood producer who thinks that I have “the look.”

The more I think about it, though….it comes down to how you define “significant.” With less than a $1,000 in my bank account and no hit single on the Billboard charts, I’m still making a difference. A BIG DIFFERENCE in some instances.

There is nothing like a little blogging
to open your eyes.


ON MY WAY (tasks started)
• No. 93 (Read 200 books)
I will definitely blog about his more later, but I just finished reading "Marley and Me" by John Grogan. It's about "life and love with the world's worst dog."
It's a must-read for all dog owners. (Warning: Have a box of tissues next to you – for the funny parts and the sad parts.)

ON THE HORIZON (upcoming tasks)
• No. 78 (Eat a "fried concoction" in front of Big Tex at the State Fair)
An article in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram on this year's "Fried fare for the fair," which runs Sept. 26-Oct. 19. The signature delights in 2008 will be fried banana splits and chicken-fried bacon.

MARK IT OFF... AGAIN (tasks completed)
• No. 32 (Inspire someone else to do 101 things)
Even though I’ve already marked this off my list, my friends Kimbra and Dave recently sent me their lists and said that I “energized” them to go for it!

Here are my favorites from their lists:

– No. 11 (Host a Jaws Pool Party)

I had to get additional information on
this in order to make it my top pick – it’s a pool party where they show “Jaws” on
a big screen. I was told it would probably include adult beverages and inflated “floaty sharks.”

NOTE: Kimbra also had two runner-up selections on her list – just because I
knew she was sending this to her mom and grandmother – No. 30 (Get a boob job) & No. 39 (Take a strip tease exercise class)

– No. 87 (Spend St. Patrick's Day in Shamrock, Texas, and stay at the U-Drop Inn) Until I Googled Shamrock, Texas, I wasn’t even sure where it was (in the Panhandle east of Amarillo), but you have to visit the town’s web site. It’s on Route 66 and looks very cool.

NOTE: Dave got points in my book for really extending himself, too. This may be the toughest task that I’ve seen on anyone’s list – No. 1 (Be Interviewed by Jay Leno for doing something GREAT!) Not that Dave isn’t going to do something great, but when I think of the “Tonight Show” I think of movie stars and comedians. (See blog post above)

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately; I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life; To put to rout all that was not life; And not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived."
– Henry David Thoreau

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