Howdy. I'm Matt Todd. My wife and I have four kids and a dog,. I'm passionate about orphan care. I'm a die-hard fan of the Evansville Aces, the Indiana Hoosiers, and Star Wars. I'm trying to live life by the Todd family motto: "It behooves us to live!"

Sweetest Day is almost here!

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Sweetest Day #SweetestDay

What? You’ve never heard of Sweetest Day?

That’s OK. I’d never heard of Sweetest Day until a friend of mine from Chicago mentioned it while we were at Milligan.  I wondered.

Well…

Yeah. It is. It’s a made up holiday. Its roots have something to do with candy makers wanting to “bring happiness to those who were forgotten,” like the poor, old folks, and orphans. Since the first Sweetest Day in the early 1920s, the day has evolved into a day to spread goodness and cheer to everyone – especially your significant other, and especially if you decide to give away sweets. Because that’s what makes it sweet, right?

So, it might be true that Sweetest Day really is nothing more than a made up holiday in a thinly-veiled attempt to get us to buy more chocolate on the third Saturday of October, even though we’re already stocking up for Halloween. It’s still a good opportunity to make sure that Special Someone knows you’re thinking about him or her. Right? I mean, who doesn’t like being told that they’re on someone’s mind?

Go Big or Go Home?

You could choose to go all-out and do something like plan a romantic getaway with BedandBreakfast.com. Since Sweetest Day is always the third weekend in October, you might want to check out south central Indiana. It’s beautiful this time of year!

eCreamery $10 Off Banner AdOr there’s ice cream. There’s always ice cream. What’s sweeter than ice cream? That’s the perfect gift for Sweetest Day, do’t you think?

And what makes ice cream an even better treat for Sweetest Day? Personalized ice cream!

We like to say that there’s always room for ice cream, even if you’re full beyond full. That’s because ice cream oozes through the cracks. It’s proven.* Because science.

Of course, if you haven’t done it yet, you could always try your hand at writing a love note.

Or, there are a few other small gifts you could give for Sweetest Day. They’re simple. They’re corny. And they’re sweet. For Sweetest Day. Get it? And you can find many of these items at Dollar Tree (you can order them online with FREE In-Store Pickup. [Restrictions may apply]). So it’s a pretty good deal!

Socks

Sweetest Day gift

Who says you have to give food for Sweetest Day? You could give a pair of socks with a note attached that says something like “You knock my socks off!” They could be serious socks. They could be silly socks. It’s really up to you!

Corny? Yes. Absolutely. But wait. There’s more!

Donuts

Donut you know I love you? #SweetestDay Sweetest Day

Or you could always surprise that Special Someone with donuts (or some other type of snack cake) with a silly note like “Donut you know I love you hole lot?” Or something like that.

It’s goofy. I know. You might even call it punny. But it’s a simple way to celebrate Sweetest Day, don’t you think?

I know there are other simple, punny Sweetest Day gifts you can give. Share your ideas in the comments below!

I hope you have a fun day, sharing sweetness with your friends and family!

 

 

*No. It isn’t proven. This is just a joke. But it sounds good. Doesn’t it? That’s why we use it as an excuse to eat ice cream.

What if? 10 years later.

What If

Aly and I went to Cold Stone Creamery to take advantage of the BOGO coupon they sent me for my birthday. We had a good time and the slightly modified Signature Creations that we had – Oreo filling flavored cream with Oreos mixed in and chocolate truffle cream with brownie bits and chocolate chips (should’ve had Oreos instead of chocolate chips, but that’s OK. I’m not complaining) – were pretty amazing.

Free birthday ice cream. Mmmmmmm….

A post shared by Matt Todd (@mattdantodd) on

As we were chowing down on our fabulous frozen feasts, it hit me: It’s right about ten years since I was given a somewhat unexpected job offer. At that time, I was delivering pizzas and serving as a substitute teacher in two different school districts, desperately trying to do whatever I could to keep our head somewhat above water.

Because of this job offer, I was this close to packing up our family and moving to Evansville to help open a Cold Stone Creamery. And when I say this close, I mean it.

We were this. close…

banana for scale

Thanks to the banana added for scale, you can see that I was pretty stinkin’ close to accepting the job. We were also just as close to moving to Phoenix so I could attend seminary there. I don’t really have anything profound to say about that. Just felt like sharing it.

I can’t imagine what life would’ve been like if we’d moved to Phoenix or Evansville instead of upper East Tennessee ten years ago. So many things would’ve been different. I’m sure there would have been some good things, but I also know that we would’ve missed out on meeting some pretty amazing friends over the last ten years.  Some pretty crazy thing have happened over the last ten years. Some have been awesome. Some not-so-awesome.

It was awful tempting to dwell on the “What if?” questions that could easily arise when thinking about past decisions. But I knew that wouldn’t have done any good. So while I thought about all the good and bad things that would have been different if I’d accepted that job offer, I also celebrated the great journey that began ten years ago.

I’m also looking forward to the next chapter in our story. I think we’re in for an amazing ride.

 

#TwitterTuesday :: Adoption and sports and ice cream and suffering and all things in between

There aren’t many favorite tweets from the last week. It could be argued, however, that some of these tweets are worth a thousand words. Or more. I’ll let you decide.


This photo took my breath away. And gave me goose-bumps. Love everything about this. If you haven’t seen this yet, drop everything and do it now. I warn you, though. It might make you cry.


I know a lot of people who are hurting right now for a whole lot of different reasons. This tweet was perfectly timed.


Remember how we discussed whether or not you should rush the field of play? Just a friendly reminder to make sure the game is over before you do so.


What’s Summer without a creepy ice cream man?

#TwitterTuesday :: Show Hope’s 10-year celebration (and other fun stuff)

Here’s a look at this week’s Twitter Tuesday extravaganza. There’s a lot here from our celebration in Nashville with other Show Hope families. I’m sure I’ll be sharing more about that later this week. Let’s just say that although my head’s still a little bit sunburnt, my heart’s still quite full from our amazing weekend. Thank you, Show Hope team for putting together an amazing weekend!

I’ll admit. I’m a little bit disappointed that I couldn’t score some early tickets to the Star Wars exhibit at the Indiana State Museum. I am, however, quite happy for the man, the myth, the legend behind Indiana Geeking. He got to go as a member of the Media. He has a pretty good writeup on his blog. You should read it. And then you should go to the exhibit. Sounds like it’s pretty amazing.

Good advice. You need to listen to Dan. Trust me.

Our preacher shared a secret a few weeks ago. You have to ask for ice cream when you order a milkshake from Steak n Shake. This was a life-changing revelation.

We here in Greenwood are so proud of you, Sara! Knock ’em dead tonight in regionals!

There were lots of food trucks. And lots of people. I hear some of the trucks ran out of food. That’s a good problem to have. Right?

That was such an amazing weekend with an amazing bunch of people – including my amazing wife and our amazing kids!

I is for Ice Cream for Breakfast!

I is for Ice Cream for Breakfast A to Z Challenge 2013

Did you know there’s a International Ice Cream for Breakfast Day? You’re already late for this year’s event, unfortunately. It’s always the first Saturday of February. But you can go ahead and start planning ahead for next year’s celebration if you’d like.

We have our own ice cream for breakfast tradition. It started on an International Ice Cream for Breakfast Day while Christy was at a conference in Georgia. Somehow along the way, Ice Cream for Breakfast Day moved to when she goes out of town  for her annual Girls’ Weekend Getaway with her college roommates. You know what they say about when the cat’s away….or something like that…

Last year, I upped the ante and made chocolate waffles to go with the chocolate and vanilla ice cream. I’m not sure what we’re going to do this year to top last year’s entry, but I need to decide soon. Girls’ Weekend starts this Thursday!

Any suggestions? I’m kind of leaning towards homemade donuts…

The Todd Boys Take Over Cincinnati at Winter Jam 2013

Keep Calm and Jam On Winter Jam 2013

Keep Calm and Jam On Winter Jam 2013

Remember a few weeks ago when I said I was taking Aiden to Winter Jam that weekend? Well…that didn’t happen. Stupid snow forced us to reschedule our trip. I picked Aiden up after school on Friday and we made the trip to Cincinnati to rock out with 10,000 of our closest friends at US Bank Arena so he could finally get his Christmas present. Yes…one of his Christmas presents was a road trip to Winter Jam.

waiting anxiously for Winter Jam 2013

With general admission seating, I knew we had to get there early to get a decent seat. It’s a good thing we got there when we did! The website said that the doors were supposed to open at 6 p.m. for the general admission audience. We walked up at around 5:15 and the line was already moving. Unbeknownst to us, the show really started at 6 p.m. instead of 7.

OK….the official show began at 7, but the Pre Winter Jam Jam Party started at 6. So if you have a chance to go to Winter Jam this year, be sure to get there early. That way, you’re guaranteed a seat (I hear people have been turned away from a few stops because the arenas have been filled to capacity), and you get to jam with the Winter Jam PreJam Party Jam. So you definitely want to get there early.

We had a great time at Winter Jam. To quote the Boy…

Best time EVER

I’ll admit that I was pretty excited to go to this concert. Even though I’m not necessarily his target demographic anymore, I’ve been a fan of TobyMac’s for more than 20 years. In fact, dc Talk might have been my first-ever concert (I’m a little bit fuzzy on this fact). It was pretty cool to be able to rock out to him with my son. That was a pretty neat experience – one I’ll never forget.

And while I was looking forward to the headliner, I must say that I was pretty impressed with Red. I think I would’ve been more impressed with them if I was more familiar with their music. We really liked when they blew up the stage.

The band Red on the stage

and again

The band Red at Winter Jam 2013 in Cincinnati

and again.

the band Red at Winter Jam 2013 in Cincinnati

Yeah. They liked a lot of fire. And we loved them for it. They put on a pretty good show, too.

Matthew West was a pretty good show, too. And it was for completely different reasons. He’s such a good storyteller in his song writing. He introduced a couple of songs to the crowd, including , Hello, My Name Is. I’ve been humming it ever since we heard it.

Matthew West Hello My Name Is

The highlight of the night was still TobyMac’s performance. Loved the drumline. I don’t think I’ve ever seen or heard a drumline quite like this one.

TobyMac's drumline at Winter Jam 2013 in Cincinnati Ohio

And at the end, he blew up the stage again.

TobyMac's grand finale at Winter Jam 2013 in Cincinnati

We crashed at a hotel in Florence Y’all. But before we could sleep, we had to find some food for our bellies. Other than sharing some popcorn at the concert, neither one of us had really eaten anything since lunch. We were hungry. The only fast food joint near our hotel that was still open was a Steak n Shake. Unfortunately, I think the entire town of Florence Y’all was there. After waiting a while, we decided to buy some Lunchables from the local Meijer and go to bed.

Of course, no visit to the Cincinnati area is complete without a trip to Graeter’s. I had their Blueberry Pie ice cream. It was uh-mazing!

blueberry pie ice cream at Graeter's

Aiden had Caramel ice cream with a pretzel cone.

Caramel ice cream on a pretzel cone from Graeter's

I think he liked it.

Aiden eating his caramel ice cream on a pretzel cone from Graeter's