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Awww ... isn’t he adorable?

Published: Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014 12:36 p.m. CDT

Well, before I kickoff this edition of the Hometown Kid. I wanted to thank the Bleeker family for letting me take part in the digital conversion at Capitol II Theatre. The surround sound and picture will create an amazing movie-going experience for years to come.

Now on to your regularly scheduled “Hometown Kid.”

I was asked once, “How do you come up with something to write about every week for Hometown Kid?” To be honest, I couldn’t come up with a clear answer, even if I tried. The main goal this week was preparing for the Greater Newton Area Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner.

I thought it would be great to write as much as I could ahead of time, so when Thursday got here I could treat it like a mini vacation leading up to the dinner.

I wrote a column on my take on the importance of implementation of the outcomes of the city’s reports and initiatives. I’ll eventually get to that, but not to the level of detail I’ve written before.

Instead, I found out part way through the week I was going to have to change my schedule around due to issues I had no control of. Don’t get me wrong, this week has been amazing with thinking on my feet getting back to the roots of what I love to do and what has made me the man I am today.

I found myself really stressed out on Monday wondering what I was going to do. I found myself looking through pictures on Facebook and I came across this one of Dad and me at the pool.

The one question has always been,” What were you looking at?” and trust me, many family members have theories on what it could have been. All them are plausible, based on the stories I heard about my male role models growing up.

I began to laugh and remember to just simply relax about the week ahead.

During the past two days, I just buckled down, hitting my to-do list. In the same mode, I have also been trying to relax and have some fun, which surprisingly, actually happened. For the past week, I have been making plans on my suit for the dinner, but of course Wednesday at 5:10 p.m., which is after closing time, I had the suit ready to go.

This wouldn’t have been possible if it wasn’t for the ladies at the Bridal Sweet. I want to thank them, because not only now, but throughout my high school years, they have made sure to remind the community that I do clean up nicely.

I constantly go day in and day out running, and sometimes I tend to forget to take time to slow down. My dad has been my greatest teacher in slowing down to appreciate true beauty. He always reminds me never to rush when you have the chance to appreciate something beautiful.

I had a chance in the midst of a busy day to stop and have an actual conversation with someone. For the first five minutes of the conversation I was looking at the clock thinking, “You’ve got to get going,” but getting deeper into the conversation, I realized there was nowhere else I wanted to be than right there, finding out more about this intriguing individual.

I have found many people don’t believe thinking like this happens anymore unless you see everyone else stopping to pay attention. In high school, I designed hundreds of pages for both the newspaper and yearbook. I found myself finding my father’s eye taking the time to design something to make life easier for those we were designing for, but also having them wonder, “How did you do that?”

Many of the conversations between my father and I have been about changing the world, wondering if it took something as simple as bringing a smile to the next soul you meet or if you had to do something more? The last time he asked me that question, via text message, I was busy and gave a quick response.

I thought about the week, and I wondered, “How did this one individual change my world just by a conversation?” I was having a very stressful week, but with a simple conversation, I was left truly smiling and captivated.

I know heading to the dinner tomorrow, it will be filled with information about what Newton has accomplished throughout the past year, as well as the plan for the year ahead. Having lived in Newton for most of my life, I have seen the town’s heartache, and heard the promises of something better to come.

It’s evident things take time, but for most citizens, they have been waiting since the day Whirlpool pulled out of town for something better. It’s a bit like a someone finding their feet after a bad relationship, using a little more makeup or cologne, finding the outfit that, when mixed with his or her personality, will make the perfect combination of sexy and cute.

That person doesn’t want someone to try to make him or her forget the pain, but rather to know that pain will never be felt again. He or she wants to laugh again, but more than that, wants to feel he or she can be his or herself, which is what he or she truly wants you to see.

As a community, we have shown we can invest in reports and create initiatives. But what are we doing to make our investments and creations come to life? In the end, using an analogy, if you don’t act upon what Newton truly needs, it won’t want to show you what it truly wants.

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