What Makes You Happy?

Posted: August 6, 2010 in Joe's Life, Work and Play
Tags: , , , ,

For the last couple months, I’ve thought a lot about what makes me happy. I have things that I “love” like beer, whiskey, baseball and a strong cup of coffee, but I struggled to find an answer to the question “What makes you happy?” (#WMYH)

A little less than two weeks ago, I started to find my answer during a phone call with Papa Piehl. Papa and Mama Piehl we’re visiting my older sister Kim in Arizona and Papa Piehl told me about the awesome things my sisters were doing that weekend. He reminded me to send a note, so I wrote a Facebook status update highlighting my amazing sisters and almost immediately the responses came in about the amazing women in my life.

The final piece of the puzzle came together at the Brewers vs. Cubs game this past Tuesday when a friend of mine started to get tired. When I asked if we should call it night, she pushed back and said “Nope, you bought the tickets. I want to leave when you want to leave.” But that didn’t make sense because I can watch baseball for hours and I know she wasn’t up for that challenge – I wanted to know what would make her happy. It was at this moment that I realized what made me happy: Supporting my friends and being their “cheerleader.”

So in the spirit of being the ultimate supporter and doing something that makes me happy, I’ve decided that every Friday I’m going to highlight one of the amazing people in my life and be their cheerleader. And since supporting my older sister Kim helped me figure this out, this one is about her.

Kimberly Piehl (Don’t call her Kimmie – she’s not a fan)

Over five years ago, Kim went on a Spring Break trip to Arizona and spent a week volunteering at Maggie’s Place – a community that provides a home for pregnant women who are alone or on the streets. As a baby fanatic, it was no surprise that about 4 month later she started a one-year volunteer position with Maggie’s Place.

“Kim just told me ‘Dad, I don’t think I’ll ever be able to leave this place.'” These were the words of Papa Piehl about nine months into Kim’s one year commitment. It speaks not only to her passion for helping others but also her dedication to the women and children of Phoenix.

To up the ante even further, she’s a full time staff member for Maggie’s Place but instead of a salary she receives a comfortable place to live and a stipend every month. It’s easy to ask “How do you live like that?” or ‘What do you do for fun?”, but consider yourself forewarned, her active schedule will make you tired just listening to her. Have you ran a marathon or triathlon in the past year? Because Kim’s probably ran 2 of them in between her skiing and hiking trips to Flagstaff. And at work her energy doesn’t stop either!

The weekend I posted a comment about my awesome sisters, Maggie’s Place was celebrating their 10 Year Anniversary and guess who coordinated it, Kim did – including a special speech by Brenda Warner, Kurt Warner’s wife. If that isn’t enough, she helps coordinate the annual Christmas Party and gift distribution that Maggie’s Place hosts for current and “alumni” families. The donation “pile” is so large for this event that in years past they filled a completely empty Scottsdale, AZ house with donations. No wonder people know her as Santa!

Not only does she do amazing things for Maggie’s Place, but she’s also a supportive sister and a loving friend. I have an opportunity to work with some amazing clients like Harley-Davidson and Combos – the awesome cheese filled snack – and in April Combos hosted a NASCAR viewing party in the Phoenix area. Even though NASCAR isn’t Kim’s forte, she still brought a throng of people almost an hour way from her home in Tempe, AZ to the party. It’s actions like this that make it tough not to love and support a girl like Kim.

If your ever in the Phoenix area, let me know because you definitely need to meet Kim!

——-

The same Tuesday I went to the Brewers vs. Cubs game, I decided to be a little dorky and do the “I think you have something on your shirt” joke to my friend, to which I promptly received the response, “You’re such a dad. You know that’s a dad joke right?” Hopefully someday I actually will get to be a dad, but until then I’m willing to accept the fact that every so often I’m a 42-year-old dad trapped in a 24-year-old’s body.

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Comments
  1. Pat Piehl says:

    Joe, you amaze me everytime you do something. I am truly proud to call you my family member for this undertaking. And I agree…Kim, Erin, and your Mom and Dad are all amazing people who have always given more to their community than taken. You all honor the Piehl name.

    • Joe says:

      Thanks Pat. You’re an amazing cousin and life wouldn’t be the same without you, Cassie and Lily. Watching you and Cassie raise such a beautiful and intelligent daughter always makes me smile and I love seeing new photos on Facebook.

      Blogging takes more effort than I thought it would but thankfully our whole family, Piehls, Kimballs and Pijans, have been blessed in so many ways that blog posts like this are easy to write.

  2. […] couple weeks ago, I shared with you what makes me happy and ultimately what makes me smile. So now it’s time to focus on what makes YOU smile. Surprising […]

  3. […] Watch my older sister run a marathon (In April she is running the Boston […]

  4. […] couple weeks ago, I said the thing that makes me happy is celebrating and supporting my friends. So now it’s time to focus on what makes other people […]

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