Mike Matthews

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

Latest Post

Latest Post

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Phone

I’ll say it. I love my iPhone. I have the iPhone 12 Pro Max. It’s big, yet still fits in my back pocket. It would fit perfectly on a belt-attached   [...]   View Post →

View Post

Lingering on the Last Day

Alternate Title: Pressing that “SEND” Button is Really Hard! One of the benefits of writing this blog is renewing connections with old friends. In fact, a friend, who is a   [...]   View Post →

Summer Reading – Having a Blast

I’ve never believed in predestination. I believe that we all have far more than one possible path. My son Dawson always marvels at all of the things that had to   [...]   View Post →

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 →


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 →

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 →

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 →

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? (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 →

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 →

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 →

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 →

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 →

Recent Posts

Pressure is a Privilege

September 15, 2023

I always appreciate my friend Mikke for his humor, fantasy football banter, and his sense of adventure. But way more than that, I appreciate him because he is a very   [...]   View Post →

Ferris Bueller was Right. And He Was Wrong

September 1, 2023

Helping our Brains to Perceive a Fuller Picture Ferris Bueller said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”   [...]   View Post →

Hopes, Dreams, and Prayers for our Teachers

August 18, 2023

We said goodbye to Dawson last week. He packed his car and drove off to Colorado for the start of his junior year. It seems so early, yet the new   [...]   View Post →

Reflections on Italy (Especially the Tomatoes)

August 5, 2023

Summer is in full swing, and I love it. Here in Malibu, the beaches are crowded, the roads are crazy, the ocean is warm enough even for my anti-cold-water self,   [...]   View Post →

Books I'm Still Thinking About

Stolen Focus: Why You Can’t Pay Attention and How to Think Deeply Again Johann Hari ,   2022
Breakfast with Buddha Roland Merullo ,   2008
Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Smart, Sexy, and Fit – Until You’re 80 and Beyond ,  
The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment Eckhart Tolle ,   2010
The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People Stephen Covey ,   1989
Rich Dad, Poor Dad Richard Kiyosaki ,   2000
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
Getting Things Done David Allen ,   2001

Principalchef.com Highlights

Subscribe to my newsletter

* indicates required