Friday, August 29, 2014

The Weekend

It is amazing that this weekend is the last three day weekend of the year. Must be one of the reasons it is called Labor Day weekend. Another holiday does not occur until Thanksgiving at the end of November unless you live in Canada.

I think most families have traditions when it comes to this weekend. I know many do the same thing every year. I think it is a good idea since it is the last one of the year. It is something to enjoy and live by. So next week back to reality with school opening for most.

I know I have let most know that my experience in school, and my childhood was not a good experience in general, however, I do remember having some good times. So I want to say that if you, or your children have tough times at school whether learning, or interacting with other children I still believe it is important to have fun. Other words, it is best to make the best of all circumstances.

I believe these days it is tougher for children than it was in my days. I would say the main reason because of the internet, and cell phones. So many have cell phones with cameras so it is easy to take pictures, and I am sure kids especially like to take pictures of embarrassing moments. If this happens to your child I would encourage them, and help them under a tough situation. Also, I would speak with the parents of the child who did the action, and discipline them. I know it is not easy but the least thing the parents should be able to do is take the cell phone away from them for a period of time.

A couple weeks ago I spoke with a friend named Paul about bullying. I wrote about bullying earlier so you may want to read what I said. I usually stood up for myself under the poor circumstances so the bully would not get away with it. Paul said that he would laugh in their faces. It is important to confront, and not let the bully get away with it. It is important to tell an adult that you trust if you find it hard to speak to your parents about it.

This is my advice for you, and school. Have a wonderful weekend, and a really good rest of the year. See you on the pages again next week.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

College Bound

Well summer is about over. Technically it ends in just less than a month but the children are ready to go back to school, and this includes college.

Our two primary public colleges in Washington State one has already started and the other in four weeks. I know it seems weird; however, Washington State University is on semester so they have already started while University of Washington begins near the end of September. They are on the quarter system. The other public and private colleges begin somewhere between now and end of September.

I know some parents are saying good bye to their children for the first time while others it has been going on for some time. My brother and his wife are now onto their last child going off to college. In the past my sister-in-law always help the kids start their college career. This time my brother was able to go as well. So they are officially empty nesters. Last year Danny spent school in Paris, France so they actually were empty nesters last year but I am sure they feel it more this time around.

One my childhood classmates David and his wife are now empty nesters as well. It is a little different as well because in May they became grandparents. There old son and wife had a son. Though not living at home they will be around. Besides not having the youngest son around they have to get used to not going events their children were involved in especially sports, choir, and band. I am sure it is adjustment they have to make after so many years. I am sure Dave will keep in touch with the other parents they became friends with.  My brother moved to another town so it is not the same.

I am not an expert by any means but I hear so much about couples splitting up when their children are all gone. Some would call it midlife crisis. I think the couples may need to become friends and lovers once again. It is so often being busy with kids that couples lose out on their relationship. I would recommend for couples that still have children at home to go out on a date every week, or at least twice a month. I know it is easy to become so busy you lose out on your relationship, however, for relationship to continue I believe it is a good idea. This would work for the couples who are now on their own again. Go out on dates including the place you first met, or went out on a date. I think it is a shame to split up, and not enjoy the grandchildren together. I know you do not have to listen to me, but I think it is a good idea. I know I would love to be in your position. 

Monday, August 25, 2014

August Coming to the End

I know that there is one week of August left; however, it seems to me that August has gone by real fast which means that summer has gone by fast. I know that is nothing new since each summer goes by fast. It means that kids have, or they will be going back to school.

At church yesterday a lady asked a young boy if he was looking forward to school. He said that he was because he was having the right teacher, and his buddies are being in the same class. I would call him a blessed kid. I don’t know him very well; however, he seems to me that he is very smart. Also, his dad speaks very highly of his son. He may be happy to be back in school because it is his element; however, not all kids fit what I call his group the smart ones.

Another group of kids are those who take school in stride. They do not really want to be there; but their buddies are around them. I call them the popular ones. They are liked by most especially their friends.

Of course, the third group is what I call the Late Bloomers. I was part of that group growing up. Not only do they not want to be in school they know it will be a long year. I think this group should have a school of their own, or at least a class room. This way they do not have to compare themselves with the smart ones, or deal with the popular ones. They can work at their own pace, and they can have recess, and lunch together without the other two groups. The most important thing they get to realize that they are not alone. It is the biggest problem with this group thinking they are alone. They can have buddies that are just like them. This way they may be able to blossom earlier than later.

Though school can be good place for many kids it can be a bad place for others. Parents need to realize that school is not the same for all kids. Regardless of the group encourage, and love your kids. Make them realize they are the best. It is important to know they may not have the same experience in school that you had. 

Thursday, August 21, 2014


I have said that many places in Western Washington have access, can travel, and enjoy in one day. This is the case for Hoodsport, Washington which is on the Hood Canal. It takes about seventy minutes to drive from Gig Harbor, and is on Highway 101.

It is an incorporated town so there is really not much was far as population goes. Majority of the people live in cabins, and spend the time during the summer. It is known for mining, has a fish hatchery run by the State of Washington Fish and Wildlife, and has a winery as well. Also, you can turn off, and go about five miles to Lake Cushman.

The main thing about Lake Cushman it has a dam that is run by Tacoma Power and Light Company. Tacoma along with Gig Harbor gets a lot of their hydroelectric power from Lake Cushman Dam. The first dam was built completed in 1926. It is personal as well for me since my grandfather was an engineer when it was constructed. They completed a second dam in 1930.

Lake Cushman is a wonderful place to visit for the day along with Hoodsport. There are several state parks on the way to Hoodsport. I mention one before when growing up our family spent every year at Twanoh State Park. It is about thirty minutes from Hoodsport.

There is a lot to see along the Hood Canal. You can continue on Highway 101 beyond Hoodsport. There are a lot of cabins along the way. People from Gig Harbor, Tacoma, and Bremerton as well as other places in Western Washington have cabins. They spend summers along with weekends along the Hood Canal. There are those who retire and live there full time. If nothing else it is wonderful route to drive for the day. I call it very relaxing since there are many places you can stop for a few minutes. There are places where you can camp as well. Take your time and enjoy Hoodsport, Lake Cushman, and the Hood Canal.   

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Having a Positive Attitude

At the beginning of the year I wrote about working on changes on our lives. I am sure some would end after a month because it is not easy thing to do.

I think when it comes to the changes is to have a positive attitude which is not always an easy thing to do. I continue to work on my changes; however, they fail some times. Circumstances sometimes get in the way as well.

Most of the time we must do is realize that we are like on a race, and we have to know that we will fall but must pick ourselves up to continue on. A lot of that has to do with our attitude. I believe to continue with a positive attitude it is important to meditate on a regular basis. We can think in our minds that we can make it regardless how things seem to be. Currently I am trying to lose weight, and I find it sometimes difficult to try making my goal; however, if I continue I will make it even if it takes longer than I want to. The most important thing is to make the weight that I want to be at. This is important for any changes to our lives.

I am looking to be able to ride my new bike as well. It is difficult because I am not where I would like to be, but I know that I continue working at it I will make it. I found that some years back, possibly ten or twenty years ago I had a heart attack without realizing it. Next week I may find out whether I will need a defibrillator installed in my heart. Thinking positive at least I am still alive, and the defibrillator will keep me alive along with God’s grace.

Shows to me meditating and think positive thoughts will help me through any type of circumstance. Also, I know having friends and family with all their love help me through. It is important to let those closest to us when we are going through tough times. It is important all changes will happen even if it takes longer than we want.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Seattle Visit

A couple weeks ago my brother along with his son’s Ian and Danny my mother and I met them in Seattle. Here I am going to show some pictures I took.

Looking up at the Space Needle from ground level. Did make me feel a bit dizzy.

Looking out to downtown Seattle from the observation deck of the Space Needle. I was surprised I was not dizzy.

Looking at Lake Union from the observation deck.

A tree in Volunteer Park. I am not sure what it is I have never seen it anywhere else. Very unusual I say.

Another view of Lake Union with Seattle this time from Gas Works Park.

I hope you enjoy these pictures. As you can see Seattle is a beautiful place. If you have never been to Seattle I recommend it highly. While visiting you will see people from many different places. Seattle is a very international city.

Friday, August 15, 2014


The passing of Robin Williams has made the world the awareness of depression and suicide. It is too bad we had to wait for a well known person like him to get the word out. Now his wife says that he was in first stage of Parkinson’s disease. So I expect more awareness of it as well. We are aware that Michael Fox has the disease. With social media, and the internet we are becoming more aware of all types of diseases.

I have written about friends and family a lot on this blog. I think it is important for us to help any person we know that is dealing with something difficult in their lives. I would say that even those we may not know that well like someone at a coffee shop, or grocery store.

One of my friend’s daughters Rachel who I have known since she was small now has breast cancer. She seems to be fighting it good so far, and she has a very good attitude, however, I believe it is important to keep her in my prayers, and I find it important to encourage her any time I see her.

Sometimes it may be difficult to know what to say, however, if we can give everyone a smile, and if possible a high five.  A lot of times I feel discouraged when someone does not give a smile, or at least acknowledge you. I like it when someone says my name even though I don’t remember theirs because I had not seen them in a while.

I know a lot of what I am saying maybe has to do with my insecurities, but I think everyone likes to think people are aware of their presence in this world. Not everyone is kind, but if we can be kind each chance we have the better. It would be nice to be past all of this, but we should have as much love in our lives. None of us know when our lives will end, but we may need to be depended on someone to save our lives so if we can treat everyone good the better. Also, I believe it is part of our purpose, and destiny. Almost forgot have yourself a great weekend.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014


Reading on Monday Aug 11 about the death of Robin Williams came as a surprise to me like it was to most people. The saddest thing is to know he died in a very dark place. He was such a talented man, and those of us who were around remember when he burst on the scene on Mork and Mindy. Though he lived a life with laughter, he also lived in a world where many fall as well. He had to deal with alcohol, and I am sure around those who used drugs as well.

It brings me back to my life where I have often dealt with depression as well. The so called experts call depression a disease, however, I call it a side effect and an affliction. Most people who deal with depression because of some type of sickness. I believe most of us have dealt with depression at some level or another.

For me depression had to do mostly with insecurity, and rejection. It is amazing still to this day how children can be so mean to each other. One of my early writings on this blog had to do with my experience with bullying, and my advice to those who deal with it today. Now it has become worse because of the internet where fellow classmates put on embarrassing things such as showing the child masturbating, or calling them gays. It is hard enough to live this life than putting things on the internet for all to see. When I was growing up especially during my early childhood I would cry myself to sleep. When I was four years old I almost died from being burned. So I would ask God why he didn’t take me when he had the chance.

Yes depression can be a lonely and a dark place to be. Many cannot handle it, and believe suicide is the only way out. I had a cousin Judy who died after committing suicide. She was bipolar   an illness that usually leads to heavy and dark depression.  Her mother, and my aunt died about a year before, and she could not handle the loss of her any longer. Also, I had a great Aunt who I never met who committed suicide as well because she was rejected, and went into depression as well.

I believe that we are in a spiritual world as well as a natural world where the enemy of our souls (many call Satan) wants to destroy and kill us. I believe the reason I am still alive is because of my faith in God and his grace. I know that there is a better place for us to go after we die. If you struggle with depression I would go to someone that you trust, and let them know that you dealing with depression.  For me it is a daily journey that I know I must live with, however, in my weakness God is my strength.

My thoughts and prayers will be with you as well. It is important that we become stronger, and better people, but we need help sometimes. Our family and friends are with us too. Even during those dark times it is important to remember that we have a purpose and destiny that is beyond ourselves.  

Monday, August 11, 2014

Looking Ahead

On August 7 the city of Gig Harbor had an open housing and a public hearing at the civic center where people could see the plan they have through 2030. They realized it was a long period of time but felt it was necessary as well. Currently the population of Gig Harbor is around 7000 and by 2030 would be another 3000 which would be around 10000. The major plan had to do with downtown, and what the plan for the area well be which includes new buildings, and businesses.

They made me realize that we should all make plans. For each of us plans will be different because of our ages. In 2030 I will be in the middle of retirement; for those with small children they will be going off to college. Also, there will be those who will begin retirement, and those who will be thinking about retirement.

As far as plans go it will begin with time. You may begin with today, then one month, one year, five years, ten years, and so on and so on. You can go on as far as you want. The most important part of the plans is to leave room for changes because likely there will be changes. I think this will be exciting because we will know changes will happen.

The next thing in the plans is setting up categories. The first two, and most important are health, and finances. We want to be able to be sure our health stays good or becomes good. Also, the finances are important to be sure we can accomplish our plans. The next category would be relationships. Under relationships you would have secondary categories. Those would begin with family, friends, and work. Also, may add vacation, and other important categories you may have. The most important thing about health is how you may continue to maintain good health or get good health. I would recommend beginning with eating habits along with exercise. As far as finances it would begin with savings along with retirement.

My recommendation with making plans is to begin with the short time. I would start with today, one month, and one year. After making those plans work your way into the longer plans.

I want to wish you a wonderful week, and see how your plans work out. Though things likely will change because we can’t predict our future even one day to the next day may you be blessed.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Looking Backwards

On Tuesday Aug 5 when my brother, nephew Danny, and I went kayaking in Gig Harbor we first headed south to the spit.  The spit is at the entrance to the harbor. We actually went onto the spit; for the public by water is the only way to be on the spit. There is a road around the east side of Gig Harbor, however, by land it is private property before the spit so public can’t go on spit that way. There are two beach houses next to the spit. The people living there come out in the summer, and the weekends. Until the 1940s and 1950s most people living in East Gig Harbor spent only the summer, and weekends which included our grandparents. My dad grew up in Tacoma, and spent most of the summer in East Gig Harbor. He and his brother spent a lot of time on the water in their sailboats. Until the Tacoma Narrows Bridge was built they came into Gig Harbor by ferry.

We only spent a few minutes on the spit, and my brother explained how Gig Harbor got its name. For you do not know when Gig Harbor was discovered by the Wilkes Expedition they had a large ship, and the entrance at the spit is narrow, and shallow so the ship could not enter. Instead they had smaller boats they rowed into the harbor in, and they were called gigs.
After spending the time on the spit we rowed back north on the east side of Gig Harbor so Danny could see a closer look of the house my brother and I grew up in. It is about half way into the harbor. The house was originally a cabin when the family moved in. My grandparents retired to Gig Harbor fulltime, however, our dad decided to move the family in as well because of the health of his parents. This actually happened before I and my brother were born. Our dad designed, and built onto the cabin an upstairs, and downstairs to make the full house. Our grandparents lived in the downstairs while we lived upstairs, however, my grandmother died when I was a year old so I only remember my grandfather living with us. There are only some things I remember about him he died when I was nine. His part of the downstairs had a kitchen, bathroom, bedroom and a living room. After he died we used it as a recreation area with a pool table, and a ping pong table. When all of us kids grew up our parents rented out that area. Also, there were two additional bedrooms adjacent to the apartment.

Our house and about a half dozen other houses on East Gig Harbor are still there from when we were growing up. The current owner of our house has kept the outside looking the same except added a deck looking out toward the harbor on the upper side of the house. Other than the half dozen houses, and ours the others have been replaced along with adding many more houses. They are all very large houses. I don’t see where any more homes can be added, however, if there is a way I am sure it will happen. East Gig Harbor is zoned for residential only so there are no commercial businesses. Also, to shop must go into Gig Harbor.

We finished by rowing back across to the downtown of Gig Harbor. The waterfront of Gig Harbor is mainly made up businesses, and marinas. There are a few homes on the waterfront; however, they can only be seen from East Gig Harbor.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Spending Time in Gig Harbor

As you know reading this blog you know I spend most of my time in Gig Harbor where I grew up. I can’t really believe in growing up anywhere else. Those things have changed over time I still think of it as really good place. Sometimes I feel it would be nice to be somewhere else where more is going on; however, I like the fact those of us who live here have to find their own thing to do. Of course, we have all kinds of water sports as well as biking and camping along with other country activities. It is a great place to get away, and relax from stress.

It is really nice that my brother Jack and his son Danny are in town. They will be returning back to their place tomorrow on Aug.6. On Sunday Aug.3 they went up along with Jack’s son Ian to  Mt. Rainier so they did not really want to make a trip to the Olympic Mountains this time around. So instead we spent the morning walking around downtown Gig Harbor, and giving Danny a history lesson since he has only been here two or three other times. In the afternoon the three of us took water trip around the harbor by kayaking. It was such a wonderful time. I haven’t been on the water for some time. There were some homes that can only be viewed by water because they are on private land.

I have said before there are so many wonderful places to see in Western Washington. I could easily spend a day in each town for a while before seeing them all. Every place is wonderful and unique to itself.  Also, we can learn interesting history about each place as well. The Native Americans spent a lot of years here before the white man came. Though there isn’t as many as before there are some still around, and interesting to hear their stories they learned from their ancestors. 

Monday, August 4, 2014

A Day in Seattle

On Aug 2 my mother and I took the Bremerton-Seattle ferry to see, and visit my brother, Jack, and two of his son’s Ian and Danny. It takes a half hour to drive to Bremerton from Gig Harbor, and then another hour to ride the ferry.

Besides watching the view seeing Seattle ahead is to see the children on the ferry. I enjoy watching kids at any time. It is amazing how they act, and having a really good time.

We were picked up by Jack, Ian, and Danny when we arrived at ferry dock. It took only a few minutes to get to Seattle Center which was good because the head space on the rental car was not good especially for Danny who sat in the middle in the back with Ian and me.

At the Seattle Center we first got tickets to go up the Space Needle. It took a few minutes to do so, however, we had to wait more than a half hour to get in line so we went to EMP museum for a little while. We were told we could go to EMP often as we wish so after about a half hour we went to the Space Needle.  I have to tell you it is expensive to go up just to watch the view. We did not have lunch at the Space Needle because you have to put in a reservation several weeks in advance. I have been told that the food is very good though. We went to the observation deck where you can walk around seeing the view all over Seattle, and Puget Sound. Another time I will show pictures.

I am not very good with heights. From ground level I got a little dizzy looking up, however, I was surprised going up the elevator to observation deck it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. On the observation deck I felt fine as well. I guess I felt fine because I knew I would not fall. We had to wait a few minutes for the observation deck because going up the elevator we heard lightning which was strange because it doesn’t happen very often. After the Space Needle we went back to EMP for our second round. It is really nice place to visit though I am not a big fan in museums in general.

At that point we were hungry for lunch. The first place we went to was closed for a private party until five so we moved on, however, the second choice there was a protest across the street so we decided go to a restaurant near where Ian is living right now in Capital Hill. It specializes in burgers so I had very good cheese burger. I have to admit it was one of the best I have ever had. After lunch we went, and had ice cream not too far away from the restaurant. Also, very good ice cream too.

The rest of the afternoon we spent at Volunteer Park which is in Capital Hill, and Gas Works Park. Both are wonderful places to visit. It was actually the first time I had ever visited either place. I especially liked Gas Works because it is right on Lake Union, and has a really good view. I would recommend going there when visiting Seattle.

We went back to the ferry dock, and mother and I returned back to Gig Harbor. It was wonderful day in Seattle. Besides the Space Needle, EMP, Volunteer, and Gas Work parks was seeing so many people from different places. Seattle has become so international far as visitors go.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Welcome to August

Welcome to the month of August. Whatever you have not accomplished this summer especially fun you have only August to accomplish it. The reason is that September means you have to go back to school.

I know that there are those children who like to go back to school; however, I was not one of them. The best part of the summer is that I could do what I wanted to do, and not what other people wanted me to do especially adults. Those children who are looking forward to go back to school are they really believe school is for their own good. It is like going to the Public Library where you are told not to talk. I am not sure who made up the rule, but I am one that does not like it. It is just like going to a golf tournament where you can’t talk either until the shot is complete. No one knows where that came in either unless you a golf historian. I prefer the coffee shop because I can read if I like, and at the same time talk. You are on your own if you are looking forward to September.

It was about six months ago one of my former classmate, and friend on FB wrote that elementary school was the longest six years of his life. I agreed especially when he listed the teachers he had in elementary school. Looking at his list I saw that I had five of the same teachers so made me realize it was true. Only one on the list I really enjoyed, and that was Mrs. Eaton in fifth grade. Mainly she understood me, and got the most out of me. Probably the only year I really wanted to be in school. She went to same church so she kept up with me even into adulthood making sure I was OK.

When I graduated from high school which was one of the best days of my life one of those handing out diplomas, and praise mentioned that there was someone who had perfect attendance all twelve years. I wondered why I would miss at least one day of school each year on principal alone. Also, how could someone go without getting sick at least once a year as well? I do not remember the person’s name but they obviously had a sheltered life.

Even if you are a child that is looking forward to going back to school next month if not for you do it for me by having a really fun August.