Friday, April 13, 2012

Family first.

I'm so grateful Becs and I were able to have my mom and aunt Judi in our home for lunch over the holiday season.  Becca, mom and aunt Judi did girlie stuff, aka, worked on Becca's wedding dress while I happily went grocery shopping so I could make lunch for everyone.  While we were eating, something aunt Judi said about the greek lentil sandwich she enjoyed, was, "I learned this from Paul."

This is my cousin Paul 
Paul  is her soon and is older than me by just a couple months.  That resonated within me and I've thought about that comment for the past several days.  "I learned this from......"  It's cool to think that we can learn from anyone and everything around us.  Older, younger, artistic, scientific, musical or a bit flat....(that was a music joke).....plants, animals and everything in between.

Reflecting on this idea, I watched my puppy Pele' take a poop (which is a rare sight, as he's a shy pooper), and laughed, because i've learned so much from him and now his little (but BIG) brother Buck. You might still be wondering why I was talking about Pele' pooping and its all about communication.  Pele' and Buck tell me when they are hungry, when they need to go out, when they want their belly rubbed, when they want to snuggle and when they're excited to go on a walk.  COMMUNICATION.  It takes intuition and attention from all parties to communicate.  Which leads me to...(drum roll please) dynamics!  Dogs are pack animals and have totally reinforced what my parents always told me growing up.  "Family first."

Our puppies have taught me how to be responsible for someone else, as they depend on me.  I'm very grateful I have Rebecca to help us all live lovingly together.  Teamwork!!  I'm certainly glad to have her on my team!  Between the four of us under one roof, I've finally learned why my parents always told me "family first."

We all have two families in life.  The family we were born into, and the family we create.

Without further adue, let me introduce you to the family I am creating.  My beautiful fiance' and our puppies.


Our Puppy Pele'

 Our puppy Buck...short for Buckminster...long for Buuu!

 What have you learned from your puppies???

Peace and Blessings,

Brandon E. Kocher

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Colors of Spring!

In light of a mild Cleveland winter, i've decided to document the colors of this early and beautiful spring.  I've been walking to work, so many (but not all) of the pics are from my daily commute.  Happy Spring!

This is crazy beautiful weather for Cleveland in March.

 Magnolias are my favorite spring tree as the flowers are gorgeous!

Not sure what kind of tree this is.

This is our horseradish!  Year number 2 :~)

Spring flowers for my fiance' Rebecca

More pretty trees on my way to work.

Mom always said "when you see the first Robin of the year, spring is near."

Dandelion!  Did you know the leaves are extremely healthy for you?  Isn't it ironic that some people pay good money to eat leaves of a dandelion and others pay good money for chemicals to keep them out of their lawn.  I prefer food. 

More pretty flowers.

What's your favorite spring flower???

Peace and Blessings,

Brandon E. Kocher

Monday, February 27, 2012

"Keep your head up, Keep your heart strong!"

Changes in life happen ALL THE TIME!  The gears are always changing.  The wind is always blowing us from one season to the next.  We are always learning and breathing....and if not we're dead.  So as long as you're breathing, keep learning and moving and loving and BELIEVING!  Believing in what, is up to you to decide, but always be kind.  You might think this color is blue, but I see green.  It's still a color.  You will always be my brother, or sister, and it's ok to cry!  Smile when God gives you so much love you overflow just a little bit, or a lot-a-bit.  We're all pieces to the puzzle, we all fit.    

My brother shared a music video on FaceBook (the teller of all things) and it was just what the doctor ordered this morning.  Here is my mornings muse.  "keep your head up" I hope it's the spark that creates the fire under your ass to get ya moving, it certainly did for me.

What is your muse this morning?

Love and light,


Thursday, February 2, 2012

A Walk this Morning

Hello family and friends!

I know it has been a very long time since i've posted a blog, but i'm gonna remedy that right now and hopefully get back into the blogg'n groove.

A couple weeks ago, I was outside in the morning walking my fiance' to her car for a kiss goodbye, before she left for work.  After she pulled out of the driveway I saw my neighbor, a young high school boy, leave his house to walk to school.  I said hello to him and asked him how long it takes him to walk to school.  He said, "about 45 minutes."  I was rather astonished, in the best way possible of course!
(This is our street on a cold snowy morning)

In elementary school, I used to walk to school every single day.  Minus the cold rainy days, then mom would drive me and my sister, a half mile, so we could sit at our desks in dry cloths ready to learn.  When I graduated elementary school, the days of walking to school came to an end.  Junior high school was much further away from home and there was a bus that would swoop up all the kids in the neighborhood.  My friends and I mostly took the bus, but there was a spring semester where we mostly biked to school together.  Biking to school with my friends always felt like such an adventure!

Fast forwarding through high school and having a car, and college with a campus the size of the biggest bubble gum bubble you can blow, I want to come into the now.  I'm 28 years old, I'm engaged to a beautiful and intelligent woman (PeaceLove&Bagels), a business owner (that also has a full time job) a happy homeowner and a proud father of two puppies!

This past week as I was, again, saying farewell to my fiance' Becca, before she drove off to work and saw my neighbor again, leaving his house to walk 45 minutes to school.  It was a cold blustery day, but he was walking anyway. Here in Cleveland we have what I like to call the Cleveland Hybrid.  Ya's rain/slush/sleet/snow all mixed together.  Sounds great, right?  Well, it was definitely one of those days.

As I sat, warm and cozy, on my couch inside, I began to think of my young neighbor walking to school.  I live closer to my work (I manage a Ben and Jerry's scoop shop) than he does to his high school and he walks to school and I drive to work.  I've also been known to ride my bike to work as often as possible, but that's not exactly safe in cold wet and icy conditions.....I learned my lesson the hard way....errr the concrete way!

Yup, I had a pretty gnarly wipe-out on my bike a few weeks ago.  I was making an aggressive turn on moist pavement and the temperature was just above freezing.  Cue, back tire sliding out from underneath me and me bailing from my bike, stage right!  Needless to say I put my bike away (for the time being) and started to drive to work, until I saw my neighbor on that cold, wet and dark morning walking to school.

I thought to myself, I walked to my elementary school as a boy.  Why don't I walk to work as an adult? (I use that term loosely).  On that morning I made the commitment to walk to and from work.  Even in dismal weather.  
 Me with my walking stick "Olu" in hand, bundled in my warmest and most weather proof gear I own. 

"My life bag is filled with food for the day"

It has only been about a week since I've started walking to work, but it feels great.  I have a fresh attitude walking through the door and have been way more productive as a result.  I've also begun to distinguish different tracks.

 At first I thought this was a bunny, as the four paws are close together and the tracks showed a hopping pattern.  After further investigation, it is definitely a squirrel's tracks.  The tracks led to the squirrels breakfast!  

Above is a closeup pic of a squirrels paw

Aaaaanndd these are human tracks.  ;~)

Last year my father had to have surgery on his spine.  It was very scary to see my father in a bed and unable to walk.  Thank God the surgery went well and my Dad has made a wonderful recovery.  He is once again able to bend and move and swim and WALK!  In light of the experience, I wrote a song called "A Walk this Morning."  

I've completed my first EP (5 songs) with recording engineer Lino Sistu and "A Walk this Morning" was the first song we recorded.  I'd like to share it with you all today.  Be sure to keep your eyes and ears on FireSide Symphony for the release of all 5 tunes.  Follow this link for the music "A Walk this Morning" and scroll to the bottom of the page and hit play!  Enjoy!

Let me know what your favorite way to get to work is!