We've been talking about a lot of heavy things lately, so I thought I'd lighten it up a bit. Here are five simple things that are making me happy:
- Stashbelt: You heard about this in my interview with Nora Dunn, the Professional Hobo. After a great experience with customer service that saved me from getting the wrong size, it arrived in a timely manner. It's too soon to do a full review, but I did create my Emergency USB Key, and aside from looking good, I feel like Jason Bourne!
- Original SWAT Boots: I picked these up on a whim in L.A. when my old “combat boots” finally wore out after seven years. I have been amazed at how comfortable, durable, and convenient they are. My back doesn't hurt as much after a day of travel, my feet don't hurt after a day of facilitating, and they even conveniently zipper open for when you're going through TSA! Since they are stylish enough to pass for “dress shoes” when going out but also are great for a workout, it means on some trips I can bring them as my only footwear.
- Dvorak Typing: I've always been annoyed with the intentional inefficiency of the QWERTY typing layout, but it wasn't until reading the Dvorak e-zine that I realized just how egregious a violation of productivity it really is. I've been using a training website to get a little better each day. Aside from the benefit of re-training my brain (much like learning an instrument) I can occasionally feel how the letter combinations work better. I'm not quite good enough to do things like, say, type this entry using Dvorak…but there is an added security bonus in that if my computer is set up for that keyboard configuration it confuses the hell out of people who try to use my computer.
- Ulysses III for iPad: I tried giving up on my iPad in favor of a larger phone, but it didn't work out. Meanwhile, my favorite writing app ported to the iPad, and I'd be lying if the thought of being able to use it didn't affect my decision to purchase one again. It is a clean interface, it uses markup (a writer's best friend), and the desktop/mobile apps sync up nicely. I haven't quite worked out the new export workflow – I liked the old way better – but on the whole I look forward to opening this app and working just because it's a pleasure.
- Maker Time: Like the Stashbelt, it's a bit too soon to review this. I've only been at the “new schedule” for a week. Not even a week, as there have been things like car repairs, travel, and more that have broken into that 4-hour block of time focused on a specific theme. But what a week it's been! I've outlined a new book, did my taxes, written contracts, finished projects, re-organized my workspace, written more and better than usual…somehow, just the idea of Maker Time is causing me to get more done. I'm using the Tempo app to keep track of where I'm at and where I'm supposed to be in my day, and it seems to be a good fit.
Your turn: let us know in the comments something about your world you're loving. Person, place, thing, noun or verb: what's making you happy.