Posted in Daily Dose of Awesome

Daddy-daughter duel

Gymnastics is one of the most difficult sports on Earth, but this dad is doing a pretty great job of mimicking the moves. His daughter is in gymnastics and has several tricks up her sleeve, so this father is game for trying just about anything. Watch as she challenges him on the floor, bars, beam and even trampoline. To be honest, I have to admit he’s doing an Awesome job. Hey dads, would you be up for the challenge?

Awesome!

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Posted in Daily Dose of Awesome

A world in which technology enhances our lives, not our screen time

This Panda Is Dancing from Max Stossel on Vimeo.

Whether it’s work, social media, a game or our Netflix account, much of our time and attention is spent on a screen. But filmmaker Max Stossel suggests that technology doesn’t have to be this way.

What if news & media companies were creating content that enriched our lives, vs. catering to our most base instincts for clicks?

What if social platforms were designed to help us create our ideal social lives, instead of to maximize time-on-site and “likes”?

What if dating apps measured their success in how well they helped us find what we’re looking for instead of in # of swipes?

As technology gets more and more engaging, and as AI and VR become more and more prevalent in our day-to-day lives, we need to take a look at how we’re structuring our future.

In this witty and all-too-true short film, Max asks the question of what might be possible if the digital world was constructed to truly enrich our lives and not just increase our screen time.

AWESOME

 

Posted in Daily Dose of Awesome

Giving employees

Not all of Santa’s elves work at the North Pole, as one heartwarming video shows.

A group of big-hearted Best Buy employees recently came together to make one teen’s Christmas complete by chipping in to surprise him with a $300 video game console.

The employees at a store on Long Island, NY, had noticed that every day for the past month, the same teenager came in to play their store’s display Wii U console, according to one of the now viral videos posted online.

Seeing an opportunity to spread love and cheer this holiday season, the workers banded together to purchase the game console for him, out of their own pockets.

“On behalf of all of us at Best Buy, we got you your very own Wii U so you don’t have to come here every day to play,” an employee presenting the gift tells the teen, who wasn’t identified on the videos.

The kid appears confused and lost for words.

“I’m being serious,” the employee insists. “For real. It’s for you. It will be your Christmas present, all right? Early Christmas present.”

A second video captured the teen standing up and shaking hands with the employee after accepting the toy with a smile.

Rahiem Storr, who posted one video on YouTube and identified himself as a Best Buy manager, said the Nintendo console came with the new “Super Smash Bros.” game.

“After purchasing the Wii U for him, they actually drove him home, where his parents were beyond welcoming,” Storr wrote with his video.

A second Best Buy employee, who posted a video on Instagram, added: “We’ve mentioned that whenever he is in the area, he is more than welcome to return to play if he’d like.”

 

Posted in Daily Dose of Awesome

A rock ‘n’ roll surprise

Don’t judge a book by its cover. I’ve found that to be true with a lot of rock ‘n’ rollers, both fans and performers. They are some of the nicest people I’ve ever come across.

Need proof? Meet DJ Ashba. He’s lead guitarist for a band called Sixx:a.m. and formerly played with Guns n’ Roses before the original band reunited this year. Simply put, the man can shred. He also might scare you if you saw him walking down a deserted street at night.

But inside of him is a heart that “gets it.” Check out what he did to spread some Awesome to those in need.

Thanks to my Awesome son Joey for finding this video for me. He and I saw Sixx:a.m. in concert and Joey was beyond impressed with DJ’s skill on the guitar. But I think we’re both more impressed with the heart this man showed in this video.

 

Posted in Daily Dose of Awesome

Real-time gift giving

What if you could give Santa your wish at one end of your flight and have those gifts waiting for you when you landed? The folks at WestJet made that happen, bringing amazing and Awesome joy to travelers.

This is a lesson for employees and businesses everywhere: Look for opportunities to go out of your way for those you serve. Even if you pick just one person a day, do SOMETHING to make their lives special. Remember, miracles DO happen, when we all work as one.

Awesome!

 

Posted in Daily Dose of Awesome

What’s important for Christmas

Merry Christmas, Awesome-ites. I hope this finds you well and merry and enjoying time with those you live.

In this musical holiday ad, a busy and dedicated dad races around trying to find the perfect gift for his loved ones. Suddenly, he realizes that he really just wants to spend time with the people he loves, and that time is the greatest gift he can give. Created in stop-frame animation and featuring vocals by James Corden, this short film is an entertaining and impactful reminder of what truly matters.

And it’s something that really has hit home with me. As many of you know, I’ve been out of work for awhile now and have battled to recover from major depression and anxiety. When the Christmas season began, I realized the weight of it all, that I wouldn’t be able to give my family the Christmas they were used to. It took weeks before I realized that wasn’t true. No, there might not be as many presents under the tree this year and, no, the boys might not get that big thing they want that’s in just about every ad they see. But what I CAN give them — what I have been able to give them and my wife every year since we’ve been a family — is me. In fact, this year, they’ve gotten more of me than ever before. Unemployment sucks and I hope to be back in the job world soon, but this year I’ve been able to do things with my kids, with my wife, that I wouldn’t ordinarily get to do. Mid-week movies, late night events without “Ugh, I’m gonna pay for this by being tired at work tomorrow,” help with their homeschooling, chores around the house that make my wife’s life easier, morning snuggles and reading with my little guy instead of rushing around getting ready to leave before the sun comes up.

So yeah, this hasn’t been your typical Christmas and your typical Christmas morning in our family.

It’s been better.

Posted in Daily Dose of Awesome

Santa being the ultimate Santa

It’s a Christmas story from East Tennessee that has gained worldwide attention.

Eric Schmitt-Matzen spreads Christmas cheer year-round and grants wishes as Santa Claus. His long white beard and curled mustache makes him perfect for the part.

He and his wife, who joins him as Mrs. Claus, even went to Santa school six years ago.

But a month and a half ago, he answered the call to grant what would end up being one child’s final Christmas wish.

He said he had just gotten home from work when a nurse at a local hospital called and said there was a very sick 5-year-old boy who wanted to see Santa Claus.

He was at the hospital in about 15 minutes and met the boy’s mother and other family members. She handed Schmitt-Matzen a toy to give to her child.

“When I got there, it was my job to make sure he got Christmas,” Schmitt-Matzen said.

With this tough task ahead of him, he asked everyone else to leave the room so that he wouldn’t break down in tears.

The video, yes, is sad. The story, yes, is sad. But it is a reminder that we’re all put on this Earth for a purpose. It might not be as big as Santa’s, but you DO have a purpose. Find it. Fill it. Do it.

Be Awesome.