In 1979 I graduated from Apple Valley Senior High School in Apple Valley, Minnesota.  There were a whole lot of fantastic people in that class and many of us still keep in touch 35 years later.

As we gather this weekend to celebrate together, I think back on the year 1979 and smile.  Here are few fun facts about 1979 – enjoy…

  • We may have seen you walking while listening to tapes on your Sony Walkman and wearing a LaCoste preppy shirt with the famous alligator on the left side. Walkmans cost $200.
  • The number one song playing during the week we graduated was “Reunited” by Peaches and Herb.
  • The most popular sitcom was “Three’s Company”.
  • The Oscar winner for best film was “Kramer vs. Kramer”
  • Victoria’s Secret was born.
  • Nickelodeon TV Cable Network was started.
  • Sid Vicious of Sex Pistols fame died of a heroin overdose.
  • Brook Shields let us know that “nothing comes between me and my Calvins”.
  • The most popular beauties of the day were Farrah Fawcett, Suzanne Somers, Lynda Carter, Catherine Bach, Cheryl Tiegs, Iman, Christie Brinkley.
  • Disco Fever was on tv and Denny Terrio taught us how to disco.
  • The Village People encourage us to be “In The Navy”. They were also sued that year by the YMCA for using their name in another song you may have heard a time or two.
  • If you were so inclined, you could buy a Mr. Microphone from Ronco.
  • We all learned, sadly, about Three Mile Island.
  • Betamax – need I say more?
  • You could have your very own Tandy TRS-80 Personal Computer for just $9,980.00.
  • A few brave souls were caught bungee jumping from the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Median Household Income was $16,500.00.
  • An average home cost $71,000.00
  • Gasoline was $0.86 per gallon.
  • A king sized bean bag chair was $19.99.
  • A JVS VHS recording machine was $54.99.

Lots of fun and silly facts that might make you chuckle and remember how it was back in the day.

Looking forward to seeing those who I haven’t seen for many years – hoping all are doing well and remembering those who are no longer able to be with us.

79…79…7,7,7,7…79!  Go Eagles!!

Knowing It All


When I was a teenager I was pretty sure that I had life  figured out and that everyone was making much ado about nothing.  A successful life meant being able to do whatever I wanted to do with whomever I chose whenever I chose to do it.

When I was in my twenties, I thought I knew it all and then some.  I figured that a successful life was one that was filled with achievements, mostly in regard to career, and that earning money was the most important thing.

When I was in my thirties and forties, I was pretty sure I knew everything there was to know about raising a family.  I didn’t take advice well and I didn’t think anyone could do it better than I could.

Now that I am in my fifties I have come to realize that I never really knew much of anything.  All of those years in which I thought I had all of life’s secrets figured out, I was actually being quite foolish.

The older I get, the more I realize that life isn’t about knowing it all – life is about people.  The secret of life isn’t related to freedom or money or creating the picture perfect family – the secret of life is to love and be loved.

Back in my teenage years, when I thought my parents were clueless, I realize that they were simply letting me figure things out for myself.  In my twenties, thirties and forties, they walked alongside me but never criticized my choices because they realized that I had to learn some things on my own in order to truly understand them.  For that, I will always be eternally grateful.

So to my children, now in their twenties and thirties, I say this…go ahead and reach for everything you hope to accomplish.  Never feel like you cannot do something simply because someone tells you that you can’t.  Hopefully we, your parents, have taught you some things that will help you as you travel through life, but know this:  You will never know it all.

Life isn’t about being the best or being perfect, life is about people.  Life is about reaching out and helping as well allowing yourself to be helped when you need it.  Life is full of blind corners and let downs, but it’s also full of happiness and love and the belief that better days are always ahead.

I used to think I knew it all – it seems like the older I get, the less I truly know, but there are a few things I know for certain.  In tough times, family always has your back.  True friends are more important that any money you’ll ever earn, and the greatest successes you’ll accomplish cannot be engraved on an award or a name plate.

Being loved and loving, that’s what life is all about.  I know it.




One year ago today ChallengesChanges was born.

With nothing more than the seed of an idea to create a place to share both the challenges and changes that life often sends my way, it has gone from a blog to a website and it has been a wonderful journey.

I can’t begin to imagine what will unfold in the year to come but I do know that during that time, there will be many more challenges to overcome and changes to adapt to.  Hopefully, several of those lessons will translate into something that will interest and inform you, the reader.

Thank you for following along and I hope to have you with me to witness many more “birthdays” to come.

Time to make a wish.