I love technology, and I love working on code. In fact, sometimes I realize I’ve been spending every waking moment in front of a screen of some kind. This past weekend was a welcome change of pace from that life.  A weekend away from keyboard.

My family and my wife’s family has always had an affinity for camping. I remember soon after my wife and I were married and after spending several camping trips “roughing it” in a tent we decided it was time to upgrade to the “next level”. Which meant in our meager way, we moved from a tent camper to a popup.


This was a huge move for us. We weren’t sleeping on the ground any more but actually had beds and even a sink! We were most definitely living the high-life. Now looking back it’s been 7 years we’ve spent our camping time in this wonderful little camper. We’ve grown from a family of two to a family of 5. And through it all this camper has given us a chance to get away from it all.  A chance to get away from keyboard and all the encumbering constraints of technology.

As busy as my life can get at times it’s critical to take some time and get away. De-stress and even (dare I say it) step away from the devices and electronics.  I have found these trips away to be incredibly helpful in more ways than one. Not only do I get a chance to leave the electronics behind but I also can take a deep breath of fresh air and do something that is truly special. I get to spend quality time with my family.

Sometimes amidst all the conferences, airports, lecture halls, business meetings, and all-night coding sessions it can be easy to forget neglect the importance of family and friends. Or pets. Or anything beyond the computer.  Life is more than lines of code, more than business meetings, more than flights and hotels. Life is about relationships (I’ve blogged about that before – here and here). Sure a good bit of my travels and meetings are for building relationships and spending time with my “extended family”.  But these camping trips are special.

So here’s a word of encouragement. Don’t neglect your closest relationships. Remember that computers, phones, tablets, and all other electronic devices are tools to accomplish a purpose, they don’t control you. Step away from them and spend some time in ‘real-life’. Enjoy the fresh air and nature and the opportunity to share your life with family and friends.

family is important
(My kids with their cousins)