Top 7 Life Changers in 2011 | Tony Van Zeyl

misc iPhoneEvery year, there are a few details in life that, in retrospect (and sometimes in the moment), change my life immensely. Here are the top ones in 2011.


Tony’s Life Changers

There were 7 in ’11…in no particular order…

1. Losing my phone and getting an iPhone

It really sucked when I lost my phone. I got over the loss of the contacts and pictures when I realized that I could now justify the purchase of an iPhone. This little thing has changed my life in all of the ways that many others have already detailed. Music! Pictures! Games! Email! Facebook! Notes! Directions! Instant everything!

2. Daughter starting kindergarten

My little girl grows up; I get a little more time to myself. She learns to read and expands her social world immensely. I also get some focused time with my three-year-old son. Win-win-win.

3. Jogging…and actually using the jogging stroller

We have had a jogging stroller for three years but never used it as anything but a stroller. I took up jogging and now actually use the stroller as intended. Positive health benefits for me and fun rides for the kids.

4. Toe socks

After taking up jogging, I learned that my body needs some help through the process. When I got some nasty blisters, someone recommended some fancy “toe socks” (Injinji) to wear while running. Not only do they help with the blisters, but I am now a convert to toe socks in general. Some people call them scary socks; I call them cool.

5. New beds!

Without getting into any complicated sleep stories of our lives since kids entered the picture, I will say that we have not had a normal sleeping situation for some time. Until now! Thanks to IKEA and the Soaring Heart Mattress Company, both our kids have their own beds while my wife and I are sleeping comfortably on a normal mattress. Sleep is good.

6. Words with Friends

I never played Scrabble in my life before this year. Now, every moment I have free is spent taking a turn against one of the dozen or so friends who I am playing. It’s turning into a problem. But then, I have built some relationships—and I know that “qi” is a real word.

7. Pandora (mobile)

I dabbled in Pandora several years ago on the laptop and dismissed it. Since then, they seem to have expanded their licensing to include more artists. Whenever I listen to a particular station, I try and imagine that I am a musical sculptor of sorts. For example, on my Talking Heads station, I chip away the Duran Duran and leave the LCD Soundsystem, chip away the Poison and leave the Devo…

And here’s a bonus…

Favorite random download…or, if I had .99, I would get you:

“Sweet Disposition” by Temper Trap

Squeaky clean Manchester-influenced dance pop with cool guitar riff reminiscent of the Edge that must have been used for a movie, TV show, or commercial.

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