During one of my recent regular visits to my Richmond office at Outdoor Living Brands, to spend a week with my brilliant team, my CEO Chris Grandpre asked me how I was doing.
"I've never been better," I replied. "In fact, I'm the happiest I've ever been in my life."
I have a job that I love, a family that I absolutely adore and such tremendously wonderful friends.
The latter was reinforced this morning when I woke up to see my Facebook, LinkedIn, texts and emails filled with birthday wishes from friends both long-time and very new. It filled my heart.
A little known fact that Laurel reminded me about this morning is that 26 years ago, on this very day, we decided to start Spada Advertising in Western New York.
One outreach to Empire of America Savings Bank yielded us our very first projects during that brief five-minute phone call -- something that I will be forever grateful for, especially to Linda Duch, Mary Ann Lauricella and Antoinette Forth.
Then, after a incredibly exciting ten years in business, again on this very day in 1999, we decided to close our business and move our family to Charlotte, where Laurel and I reinvented ourselves, as we both had no career equity down here.
Then for me came Destiny PC, Personnel Group of America, iXL, Wray Ward, Outdoor Lighting Perspectives and now Outdoor Living Brands.
For Laurel, she found and still enjoys her dream job assisting Allan Tate and Pat Riley at Allen Tate Real Estate.
So here we are, in Charlotte, and I'm jotting jotting all this down to share with my kids and those special to me. And I can honestly say we wouldn't change a thing.
Despite leaving our moms, family and friends up north, although that decision was scary and at times painful, it was one of our best ever.
The proof? Our daughter- and son-in-law and our two precious grandchildren. What a gift.