Thursday, December 29, 2016

16 good things that happened in 2016

Birthday at Disney and stopped by the Stormtroopers
@kevinhunsperger & @my123cents on Twitter
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Many people are looking back on 2016 as a horrible year. Yes, there were a lot of negative things that happened this year, but I'm choosing today to look at the glass as being half-full and remembering 16 instances that were good either for me personally, my community or our country. These are in no particular order.

1) In March I got to spend my 43rd birthday at Disney World. More specifically at Animal Kingdom and Disney Hollywood Studios. It's hard to think of a better place to be on your special day. That trip was part of the Mostly Hunsperger Spring Break when we traveled to Disney to watch our oldest son perform with the Pride of the Lions Marching Band.

Hanging out with Neville and Kalisto for a second
2) A month later Chad and I returned to WrestleMania. We took the year off in 2015 and looks like we'll be doing the same in 2017. The trip to Dallas this year was particularly eventful for me because we went to an autograph signing with Superstar Neville and he remembered me by name from a couple of other times we'd met. I did mark out pretty hardcore that day.

3) The Crafbeericans were born. We review different craft beer and are counting down from episode 99. Please watch and subscribe on YouTube. Also look for us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter (@Craftbeericans)

Stride Pro Wrestling

4) Stride Pro Wrestling made its debut. In March we held our first show. I'm honored to be a part of this great group of local wrestlers. Shows are typically the first Saturday of each month. Join us January 7! More details can be found here.

5) The Cubs won the World Series. I'm St. Louis born and bred, but I give props to the Cubs for breaking the curse. That victory alone brought so much joy to so many people, how can you not be happy for the team and their fans?

Skiing in Michigan
6) My family skied for the first time. We recently returned from a pre-Christmas vacation to Crystal Mountain Resort in Michigan. My wife and I decided to go with the "experiences" over "things" route for Christmas this year.

Project Red Heal gang
7) I was part of several different great fundraisers. A group of my friends helped raise money for the Women's Center in Carbondale during Project Red Heal. I cooked up some craft beer mac and cheese for The Chef's Challenge to benefit St. Francis CARE and Gumdrops. And Tom and I co-emceed The Williamson County Relay for Life and judged a chili cookoff to benefit several local groups. Tom also raised more than $5,000 with that Ugly Christmas Suit.

Suited up
8) Speaking of ugly suits, I ventured into the world of OppoSuits and bought my first. It's a Stormtrooper suit and in the month that I've had it, it has started many conversations.

9) The Southern Illinois Men's Expo evolved from the Men's Conference. We had a successful event and I'm looking forward to the 2017 version. I'm also honored to be voted as the new president of Women for Health and Wellness here in southern Illinois. Yes, you read that right...

Holiday World
10) My niece and nephew visited over the summer and not only did we engage in the Pokemon Go Craze, but we also got to spend the day at Holiday World and Splashin' Safari. It was great quality time with them and my parents.

11) Kevin Owens and AJ Styles made it big on the main stage of WWE. Both won heavyweight championships on their respective shows after years of toiling in the indies and lesser known companies.

12) Women's wrestling has become top notch in WWE. At WrestleMania, the company did away with the Divas belt and name and recognizes the talented women in the business as Superstars, just like their male counterparts. Charlotte, Becky Lynch, Sasha Banks and Bayley are just a few of the women making a difference.

Gary Vee

13) Gary Vaynerchuk opened my eyes to a whole new world in terms of social media, marketing and entreprenuership.  I can't do the man justice here, so please search him on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube. Look for Gary Vee. He's incredibly inspiring.

14) As I try to grow my own brand, I've had some amazing podcast guests in 2016. WWE Legends like "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan, The Honkytonk Man and Bushwhacker Luke has all be a part of the show this year. I just wrapped up a conversation with my guest for Episode 112 which will drop on January 9th. I'm happy to say it was with Dan "The Beast" Severn. 

15) Speaking of the branding side of things, I'm on a great blogging streak. This blog marks my 217th consecutive one here on My 1-2-3 Cents. But I've also been blogging for clients on various topics. Things are going well, and since I brought up streaks, my running streak remains intact too. I have run at least one mile every day since May 1, 2016. Before the streak started I participated in the River to River Relay. It was a great day and my biggest running event of the year. I am still hoping to add another marathon to my accomplishments in the near future.

Stranger Things
16) The family all dressed up for Halloween. Well, all but one teenager, but what are you going to do? This year my wife and I dressed like characters from Stranger Things. We had a blast.

So there it is, 16 events that maybe didn't impact the world, but they had a positive effect on my well-being. 2017 will no doubt have challenges too, but my goal is to stay positive and move forward. It's the best choice in any situation really.  Happy New Year!

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