Answers From Me Part 1: Spare Time

Last Friday’s Ice Breaker was all about Questions For Me.  Many of you chimed in with all kinds of questions.  It you missed out, go over to the post and add your questions (it’s not too late).  As promised, I wanted to start answering some of the questions this week.  Today, I’ll respond to a question (or several questions) from David:

What do you do in your “spare” time? You have your job, it’s got to be at least 40 hours, you’re involved in your church, you have your blog. Do you even have any spare time? What do you do for YOU? If the wife and kids were gone for a few days and you were off work, what kind of things would you do just because you have the free time?

I know, I’ve asked more than my fair share of questions – sorry. 🙂

This is a great question!  We are definitely at a stage of life with our kids that it seems like we’re running from one thing to the next to the next.  For example, yesterday after work, I went to Hannah’s track meet.  As soon as that was over, I took her home and picked up Isaac for Scouts.  I finally had dinner and a moment to sit down around 9 PM.  It’s not always like this, but you get the idea.

I like to work in the garden and in the yard.  I have a garden that is roughly 12 feet by 60 feet.  This year, I’m planting lettuce, spinach, radishes, turnips, parsnips, karoubi, potatoes, onions, shallots, peas, beans, zucchini, pumpkins, beats, tomatoes, peppers, garlic.  Working in the garden gives me a chance to work physically.  I also enjoy the opportunity to have think time.  I also like to work on home improvement projects.  This doesn’t happen a lot these days, but it is one thing I enjoy.  Over the last 16+ years of home ownership, I’ve painted, tiled floors and back splashes, installed new electrical fixtures, installed a new bathroom, and finished a basement.  Money and time are the biggest obstacles in doing more of these projects.

I probably watch more television than I should.  I’m guessing I watch about 4 – 5 hours a week.  The DVR helps keep this low, and helps me squeeze my favorite shows in when it suits my schedule.  I’m still a big sports guy, so I enjoy catching a game (or moments of a game) when I get a chance.  I’m also a closet “reality” TV fan.  I watch Survivor, The Amazing Race, The Biggest Loser, The Voice, and American Idol when I get a chance.

Bringing me into the finish

Bringing me into the finish at The Thanksgiving Day Marathon – November 2012.

I run.  I run to help counter my love for food.  And I run for exercise and for think time.  I’ve run 3 marathons, 5 half marathons, and tons of smaller races.  I’m currently running 30-35 miles per week.  Most of this happens in the morning well before the sun comes up.  Yesterday morning, I ran 5.4 miles through the neighborhoods of my town – I was finished by 5:30AM.  And then last night while Isaac was at Scouts, I ran 5.8 miles on the track at Ursinus College.  I don’t normally run twice a day, but it just worked out this way yesterday.  On a side note, I took a nasty spill with about 1/2 mile to go last night which is probably a story for another blog post.  I was able to get up and finish my run, but I was glad that one of the Scouts was prepared with a First Aid kit when I made it back to the meeting.

I’m sure I have a lot of other interests, but this should give you a tiny glimpse into the “spare” time of Jon Stolpe.  A lot of my spare time is discovered by being intentional with my daily calendar and weekly calendar.

So now it’s your turn, what do you like to do in your spare time?