Mike Matthews

My thoughts after 61 years on this planet on family, public education, cooking, and life.

Latest Post

Latest Post

My Life is Better with Less Clutter

  • Architects
  • Jon Marley
  • KonMari
  • Marie Kondo
  • Neil Schmidt
  • Organization
  • Teaching

I was not born with the “neat and tidy” gene. In fact, everything about me wants to be messy. My mom and dad had to deal with it while I   [...]   View Post →

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Failing at Retirement – Parts One and Two

I have loved not working. Transitioning from a 60 to 80-hour work week to a 0-hour work week was easier than I ever imagined. I have rested, lost weight and   [...]   View Post →

Critical Race Theory – A Superintendent and History Teacher’s Perspective

Critical Race Theory. It’s something I had never heard of until September of last year. And then, I began getting very angry emails and people started coming to board meetings   [...]   View Post →

Reflections on Dominating 5th Grade Math Speed Drills

I love it when people comment on my blog posts. I was inspired to write this post when my friend Rose Ann commented on my last post, recalling how the   [...]   View Post →

Taking My Youngest to College

That was it. Dawson gave each of us a long and hard hug, picked up the last bit of dorm room essentials from our double Target run, turned around, and   [...]   View Post →

Ladybugs and Dogs( Reflections of School and Life in the Midst of COVID-19 (#9, April 25, 2020)

It may have been the most thoughtless senior prank I ever experienced. As a former high school principal, I don’t love senior pranks. Usually, very little thought goes into them,   [...]   View Post →

Is Retirement the Life for Me? (Part 2)

First of all, thank to all of you who read and commented on my last post via Facebook, Twitter, and the Blog Site. I love the conversation and I appreciate   [...]   View Post →

Stop Yelling at the Fruit!

“Enough with the fruit already!” That’s what my friend Peter yelled at me while we were golfing last week. I had just bitten into my 2nd apple of the round   [...]   View Post →

61 Life Lessons – A Work in Progress

I turn 61 years old this week. Hopefully, I am both older and wiser. I recently heard wisdom described as lessons you have learned in your life once you shed   [...]   View Post →


Gravity feels a little more forceful today. Back in my high school physics class, Father Fred taught us that gravity pulls us down at a rate of 9.8 meters per   [...]   View Post →

For the Beautifully Better, and Overcoming the Worse

We had a wedding last weekend. It was perfect. Well, it was as perfect as life these days would allow it to be. Let’s start off with the challenges. First   [...]   View Post →

Is Retirement the Life for Me?

If you started singing the theme song from Green Acres when you saw that title, you may (1) way too impacted by afternoon tv in the 1970s, and (2) also   [...]   View Post →

Recent Posts

May All Your Favorite Bands Stay Together

May 12, 2023

“We’re getting the band back together!” That was Jake and Elwood’s dream in The Blues Brothers Movie. Getting the band back together is a worthy dream. During my college years,   [...]   View Post →

Leaning Toward the Sun

April 29, 2023

There are a lot of things in this world I don’t understand:  Understanding something, even a little bit, provides a sense of satisfaction that is hard to describe. I don’t   [...]   View Post →

Old and New Little Rock Memories

April 8, 2023

I went back this week for a short visit to my hometown of Little Rock, Arkansas. I’m proud of being from Little Rock. It’s very different from my Malibu home   [...]   View Post →

In Appreciation of Succinct Inspiration

March 26, 2023

Words matter. Or so I’ve been told. One of the semi-apologetic phrases I often use with friends, work colleagues, and my wife is, “Don’t listen to the words I say.   [...]   View Post →

Books I'm Still Thinking About

Flourish: A Visionary New Understanding of Happiness and Well-Being Martin Seligman ,   2011
Where You Go is Not Who You’ll Be Frank Bruni ,   2015
The Swerve: How the World Became Modern Stephen Greenblatt ,   2011
The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People Stephen Covey ,   1989
Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption Bryan Stevenson ,   2014
Make Your Bed: Little Things that Can Change Your Life … and Maybe the World Admiral William H. McRaven ,   2017
The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up Marie Kondo ,   2011

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