Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year

I guess you can say out with the old and in with the new. I am sure some people will say good riddance to 2014 and hello to 2015.

I am sure it will take a few days for me to get used to the fact we will be in a new year. The main thing for me to remember is to write down 2015 when I am putting down the date. I think it is sort of like our birthdays. I do not really feel the difference of being a year older on my birthday. Of course, it really depends on the birthday. Some of them are big ones.

Getting back to a new year; I think it really gives us hope for what lies ahead. Some years just are not the same as others. I am sure most people think of 2014 as one of those years we can forget. As I have said before I hope we learn in 2015 from 2014. There are some things in this country and world we need to change. We need to be able to end terrorism so it will not land on our steps. Also, we need to find a way that guns will get out of the hands of young people especially. It is sad to think that suicide is becoming such a problem in this country as well. Some want to take others with them. Of course, we need to stay on course to solve bullying, and domestic violence.

On New Year’s Eve there will be a lot of people out at parties. I will likely stay home again this year. I like a party just like anyone else. I really do not care what the occasion is I just enjoy being with people. Of course, New Year’s Eve is one of those nights where people need to be responsible. It is important not to drink too much. We want to be sure everyone is still around for the whole year of 2015. If you are hosting a party make sure those that come do not drink too much. If they do find a ride home for them, or have them stay the night.

Right now I do not have any but I think it is important to set some goals for 2015. Most likely I will keep going on the goals that I had in 2014. I did not complete all the goals so it is important to continue. No matter how hard it is I believe in meeting the goals. I hope that some things that did not happen in 2014 will happen in 2015.

The thing I liked the most about 2014 was all the people who read my blog for the year. I hope that even more will read this in 2015. If you do really enjoy it pass it on to your family and friends. Speaking of family and friends that is my continue goal is to enjoy and love everyone even greater. We can have a lot of good things going on in our lives but without love it is not the same. If you do anything tonight whether it is going to a party or stay home be sure to hug at least one person. I would say more the merry though.

Everyone have a Happy New Year. 

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Playoff Bound

The Seattle Seahawks beat the St.Louis Rams 20-6 on Sunday to be the top seed in the National Football Conference which means they have the home field advantage in the playoffs, and they will have home games during the playoffs. The New England Patriots have the top seed in the American Football Conference. They will only meet if they both make the Super Bowl which is in Arizona.

The Seahawks have a bye the first week so they only need to win two games at home to make it to the Super Bowl.  The Rams actually outplayed the Seahawks in the first half leading 6-0 going into the second half. The Rams scored two field goals. The first field goal was scored after a personal foul penalty on the Seahawks on a punt return. The Rams did not have to go far to kick the field goal. They had the ball around the fifty yard line after the punt return. The second field goal was after a fumble by Marshawn Lynch. The Seahawks did have a chance to get either a touchdown or field goal at the end of the first half but Russell Wilson threw an interception. He has not thrown many of them all season.

The Seahawks scoring was all done in the second half. Their first two possessions of the second half led to two field goals. Later they scored in the fourth quarter two touchdowns. They were on Ram turnovers. The first one Rams quarterback Shawn Hill was trying to throw the ball into the dirt, however, Seahawk defensive tackle Hill intercepted the pass which led to a Marshawn Lynch touchdown. The second touchdown was made on defense by linebacker Bruce Irvin. The Rams were making a pass to one of their receivers, and the ball was stripped, and went into Irvin’s arms, and he was able to return for touchdown. The Rams did have an opportunity to score a touchdown late in the game, however, safety Earl Thomas stripped the ball that caused a fumble that made the ball go into the end zone for a touch back. That ended any chance the Rams had in winning the game.

The Seahawks always seem to be the team to outplay the opposition in the fourth quarter. So no matter how close the game seems to be the Seahawks defense always comes to the occasion to win the game. Regardless of how the Seahawks offense is playing the defense always makes sure they stay in the game, and have the chance in winning. I expect the same during the playoffs as well. 

Monday, December 29, 2014

Year in Review

Some people like to think about the year that is now ending. I am not sure if I am one of those but I decided to write about the year in review to see how it went.

I am sure most people would agree that 2014 was a different year than most. Going into 2015 the thing I want to remember about 2014 is there any way we can learn from it. There was so much tragedy that happened throughout the year.

In Washington state and the northwest it started out good with the Seattle Seahawks beating up the Denver Broncos in February to win their first Super Bowl. This current season may look like they could win a second Super Bowl as well. The Seattle Mariners had a good baseball season so we can look as fans going to a World Series real soon. It would be great to have both in the same year.

In March Oso, Washington had a mudslide that killed many of the people living there. They are still working on recovery; hopefully, 2015 will be a better year. On June 4 there was a shooting on the campus of Seattle Pacific University. One student and the gunman were shot. There was a student at the university who was a hero by shooting the gunman or it could have been a lot worse. In September, a popular freshman high school student in Marysville shot and killed four of his close classmates, and himself. There was one student that survived the shooting. No one really knows for sure why the shooting occurred. It will be a long time recovery for the high school and the town.

On the national front there was the shooting of Michael Brown by the police, and an awful outcry with protesting in Ferguson, Missouri as well as other protests across the country. So the issue black/white racial issue raised its head once again. The grand jury found the Policeman that shot Michael Brown not at fault which brought the protesting. Personally I think there needs to be more minority policemen in areas that have trouble with minorities. This would not just be with blacks but Hispanics as well.

In Seattle the city police force among some of their members are wearing cameras while on patrol. This is a testing ground to see if it will help. Also, in Washington State a measure was passed by the voters to have gun control. The purpose is so those who purchase guns will fall through any loop holes. Of course, the pro gun people, and those who do not want to lose their 2nd amendment rights. It is important that we do not lose any amendment rights, however, the question is how do we keep people safe as well.

On the international front was the Russian-Ukraine conflict which occurred just after the Olympics; somewhat interesting to say the least. I pray for both the Russians and the Ukraine’s. I hope that life will become safe in both areas in 2015. There was shooting down of an airplane in that area as well. Also, another plane in Malaysia is missing for most of the year, and no one knows where it is. This week another plane went down as well. They believe it crashed in the ocean. We will learn about it in the near future.

We continue to hear the whole issues still happening in the Middle East with terrorists doing their thing; issues happening in Africa as well without much news going on. Also, hacking going on giving it to North Korea as well.

I could go on and on but I will not. Going into 2015, and beyond will we learn from all these tragedies or let them continue. We can think in our minds of dooms day, but I think it is better to think positive instead; for all of us to think about the good things that happened in our lives in 2014, and overcoming some things as well. Regardless what we think there is war going on all around us whether is in the natural or in our minds; important to get peace for each of us in the middle of it all.

Have a Happy New Year and enjoy the rest of your holiday.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Boxing Day

First of all I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. If you are not familiar with Boxing Day it is primarily celebrated in England and Canada. It is observed the day after Christmas. It began as a day where servants who had to work on Christmas Day where able to open their presents.

My mother was born and raised in Canada so Boxing Day has always been a big day for her. We always had a large dinner on Boxing Day, and she would invite over four couples to celebrate besides family. She celebrated it for many years until the last three years. She is now in her 90s and she does not have the energy to put it any longer. She made it such a celebration that I think Queen Elizabeth would have really enjoyed it. The dinner usually was larger than Christmas dinner was. She served goodies before the dinner as well. It certainly was the social night gathering at our house every year. If you were invited over that night you got yourself quite the treat. Also, it was nice evening to catch up with each person on what their lives had been for the year, and what they were looking forward to the next year.

I am not sure why it was a big day for my mother but it certainly was. I hope those that celebrate Boxing Day do in the same manner as my mother. It would be nice to have the dinner but she did put quite the effort into it. When she stopped it three years ago I thought she could have had the guests bring dishes themselves but for mother it would not be the same. As I think today about Boxing Day I will remember all those dinners. I am sure we had the dinners for at least fifty years. I think about those couples that came for the dinner. I am sure they felt very special that day. I am not sure whether I appreciated it that much but now that she does not have the dinner I appreciate it a lot more.

I know that my mother is very special because of the life of self sacrifice she led; not only for us children but for others as well. I know when my friends meet my mother they let me know what kind woman she is. What is even better when I meet her friends what she has said to them about me and my siblings. I think it is an honor to have a wonderful mother. It is important to let people know how important your parents are especially in their old age. I am not sure how much longer she will be around but I will enjoy her for every minute I can. 

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas

Just want to give everyone a short message today. I want to wish you all a Merry Christmas in the land of the internet. May you and your family be very blessed. May you remember this day the rest of your life with fond memories.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

The Day before Christmas

Today is the day before the big day that many anticipate all year long. Some will be just relaxing while others finish their Christmas shopping. Also, there will be others who will be traveling to visit grandparents or other relatives for Christmas. Many people have more than one family they may celebrate at one today and another tomorrow. Some families have a tradition to open presents on Christmas Eve and others on Christmas. If there are plenty of presents you can open some tonight and others tomorrow.

This year Mother and I will be celebrating Christmas very casual. We will be taking it easy because she has the flu. The chances are good we will be celebrating Christmas more fully when she feels better in a few days. We will open the presents sent to us and remember everyone we know on Christmas. We will talk about the Christmas pasts. Though it will be great joy it will be sad as well since some are no longer with us. It is important to remember those who are close to our hearts whether alive or dead.

I will remember my sister and her two young men in Quebec, Canada. The years we spent Christmas together. Also, my younger brother Jack and his family back on the east coast. I have spent a few Christmases with them. I think about my brother Dick and my dad who are no longer with us. Christmas was very special to them both. I remember the presents we opened together so often, and decorating the Christmas tree. Also, I remember my relatives in Southern France. Last year my nephew Danny spent the year studying in Paris. He visited a few days with the relatives before arriving at his home for Christmas with his family. I am sure he will not forget the experience in France. It is a beautiful place especially in Southern France. People are very friendly. Though I do not know them very well I think about my relatives in South Africa, and Australia as well. As you may be able to tell I have family and friends all over the world. I hope to be able to travel where I can meet each one in the future. I appreciate each one that read’s this blog. This is especially true for those in far off lands. I know that some of you will have a white Christmas; I will have to continue to dream about a white Christmas here at home. Who knows could have a miracle. In fact, I will have to say that you are all miracles to me.

So to you all a Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014



If you a fan of the Seattle Seahawks or you watch a lot of NFL football you know what beastmode means.  It is the name of the action of running back Marshawn Lynch when he runs the ball for the Seahawks. He was on display again on this past Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals. He had again another remarkable run any running back has ever had. Here is a link for you to see.

The run by Marshawn Lynch was in the fourth quarter put the Seahawks ahead 28-6. The game ended with another touchdown by quarterback Russell Wilson to make it a final of 35-6.

The Seahawks have had a remarkable run this season after starting with a record of 3-3. Since that record they have gone 8-1 losing only to the Kansas City Chiefs. They have one remaining game in the season in Seattle against the St.Louis Rams. The Rams always give them trouble; however, the Seahawks are favored to win.

The Seahawks defense has been playing the best defense this season especially the last six games. They will end the season with giving up the least amount of points in the NFL for the third straight year. This last Sunday the Seahawks offense matched up with them going for a total yardage running and receiving of 596 yards which is a team record. The Seahawks scored twenty-one of the points in the fourth quarter. Though the score was 14-6 heading in the fourth quarter the Seahawks were still dominating the game they had missed three field goals. It was a surprise because going into the game the Cardinals had been playing almost as good a defense as the Seahawks. This season the Seahawks offense has been playing OK going into this game but this was for sure the best. What makes it tough playing against the Seahawks offense is they make very little mistakes. So even if the game is very low scoring it will be hard for the opposing team to get a turnover to win.

If the Seahawks beat the Rams next week they will have the most wins in the NFC conference so they will home field advantage playing all the games in Seattle except the Super Bowl which will be in Arizona. The Seahawks are known to have the best home field advantage primarily because of the noise of their fans.

Until next time continue enjoying your holiday season. Go Seahawks!

Monday, December 22, 2014

New Beginnings

With December coming to the end and we are in holiday festivities we can think about the year 2014 turned out to be and look forward to 2015.

I wrote a lot about making changes in 2014 and I hope it went well for most of us. I think about 2015 and believe in new beginnings. It may be a new job or new relationships. For some it is adding new members to the family; either through marriage or a new child. New beginnings can also be a rebirth as well. It is having a new life; getting rid of an addiction or an attitude that has been carried for many years. Often we have family curses we have to overcome as well. We may think that we live a perfect life but it is not true at all. There are some things we have to realize that we live with on a daily basis that is not good for us.

There have been years where I have not liked this time of the year. I think why do people really party on New Year’s Eve.  Do they think things will get better in the New Year? Actually I think most people who party on New Year’s Eve just like to party, and it is a good opportunity to do so. You may be able to tell my insecurity is coming out or in another term I have gone through self pity on many occasions. It can be known as depression as well. A dark place I sometimes live in. A place I have lived in much more often than I would like too.  I see this as true time for new beginnings; 2015 can be a fresh start. We can live in light instead of darkness; we can be true champions than be wannabees. We can live the life we are meant to live. We can be true over comers. It is part of being champions.

Enjoy the rest of your holiday season. Reflect on 2014 and what you want 2015 to be. Of course, you do not have to wait the new beginnings can start today.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Hot Stove League

If you are a baseball fan like I am you know exactly what Hot Stove League is; otherwise, it is foreign to you. Hot Stove League is what they call the off-season for major league baseball teams before spring training starts in late February. It allows fans to stay interested during the off-season period. It involves trades, free agent signings, and rumors. The rumors would be who the fans teams they root for may get in trades or free agency.

My favorite team the Seattle Mariners realized after last season they need to get a couple right handed bats in the lineup. They had a weak offense, and new they need to get a couple right handed hitting players primarily at designated hitter, and the outfield. They signed Nelson Cruz who primarily will be the designated hitter and bat fourth in the lineup. He played last year for the Baltimore Orioles and led the major leagues in home runs with 40. Even if he does not hit as many home runs he will still be an upgrade to what they had last season at designated hitter. They also signed third baseman Kyle Seager who will likely bat behind Cruz to a seven year contract. He has been the Mariners best regular player the last three years. This week the Mariners made a trade with the Chicago Cubs, and received outfielder Justin Ruggiano who is a right handed hitter as well. He likely will be batting sixth or seventh in the lineup, and may platoon with another player who bats left handed. A couple weeks ago the Mariners traded outfielder Michael Saunders to the Toronto Blue Jays. He bats left handed so the Mariners are looking for someone else to take his place.

The Seattle Mariners were looking at several other outfielders who batted right handed but the teams looking to trade wanted more from the Mariners than they were looking to give up. One team that was real busy this week and made trades was the San Diego Padres. They got Matt Kemp from the Los Angeles Dodgers, Justin Upton from the Atlanta Braves, and Will Myers from the Tampa Bay Rays. All three players are right handed outfielders. Matt Kemp and Justin Upton were two players that were rumored to be in trades with the Mariners, however, they wanted they wanted a couple of the Mariner primary pitching prospects. The Mariners were not willing to give them up. The San Diego Padres have been the busiest team during the Hot Stove League. They may not be done making trades since they now have a new outfield, and they still have some outfielders to trade. Other teams that have been involved in trading and signing free agents are the Chicago Cubs and the Oakland Athletics. The Cubs have improved themselves some, however, the history of the team being losers for so long I sort of wonder if it will do them any good. The Oakland Athletics have made changes where I sort of wonder where they will end up being at the end of next season. Last season in July and August they made several trades to make their team better but they backfired on them. They went on a large losing streak in August and September. They made the playoffs by one game over the Mariners but lost the one game playoff against the Kansas City Royals who went on and lost to the San Francisco Giants in the World Series. They Athletics did not keep any of the players they traded for in July and August; also, they traded all-star third baseman Josh Donaldson to Toronto Blue Jays which was a surprise to everyone. At this point things do not look for the Athletics, however, their general manager Billy Beene has made magic in the past.

It will be interesting to see what the Mariners and the other teams will be doing during the rest of the Hot Stove League leading up to Spring Training. I will keep you up to date. 

Friday, December 19, 2014

Six Days Before Christmas

 We are now less than a week until that magical day of Christmas. I always figured these six days are the longest days of the year.

When I was a kid these last days until Christmas I would look under the tree to see how many presents were laying there. Of course, on Christmas Eve I would count the amount of presents I had because I knew on Christmas morning there would be more because Santa Claus came.

These six days I would look to see if we would have any snow for Christmas. I was disappointed every year because we never did have snow. There were times we would have snow before Christmas or several days after Christmas but the snow would not be on Christmas Day itself. I remember watching Dean Martin Christmas Show which was always from California. I always thought it was silly because I knew they would never have snow. Actually my favorite Christmas Show was with Andy Williams. I enjoyed his singing and stories along with having the Osmond Brothers on.

I found that Christmas Eve was the longest night of the year. Most years I did not get much sleep because I was looking forward to Santa Claus coming down the Chimney. Sometimes I would wake up just after midnight; I had a hard time getting back to sleep. I kept my eyes closed because I figured if Santa Claus knew that I was awake he would skip our house and not leave any presents. I slept a lot better when I knew he had already come and gone.

Our parents told us we could not wake them up until I believe 7 am on Christmas morning to open the presents. I can tell you we were never a second later than 7 am. Besides the presents I always looked forward to the stockings as well. There were always candy, cookies, oranges, and other assorted of goodies. Usually there were additional one or two small gifts as well.

The one thing we always found funny or different at least was every year our Aunt Marian would send clothes for Christmas. The problem was she never knew what size to get each of us. She must have at her own formula or just guessed on the sizes. Sometimes the clothes for my older Dick would fit for my younger brother Jack. The age difference between them was just over four years. Mother would take the clothes that did not fit and go to the store, and exchange them. It was Ok with Jack and I. It was like we got more Christmas presents after Christmas.

Another thing was we always had a very tall tree because we had a very high ceiling. Where we put the tree we could still look outside to the harbor. It did take some time to decorate the tree but it was always enjoyable to see. Dick being the tallest of us three boys always decorated the tree near and at the top. I think the best year decorating the tree was when I was able to finally put the star on the top. There is nothing like Christmas Day.

Have yourself and your whole family a wonderful weekend leading up to Christmas.  

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Three All-Americans

This year the University of Washington Huskies football team has three players named to All-American team. This is the first time in the history of the school to have three players named as All-Americans. The previous high had been two All-Americans. Though the season was disappointing to some I would say this achievement makes it a success. Also, the Huskies will be playing Oklahoma State in the Cactus Bowl on January 2.

The three players named as All-Americans are linebacker Hau’oli Kikaha, defensive tackle Danny Shelton, and linebacker/running back Shaq Thompson. Kikaha was  an unanimous All-American because he was named on all first teams by five services that are recognized by the NCAA. He led the nation with eighteen sacks along with being the Huskies all time sack leader. In the NFL he could be like Bruce Irvin of the Seattle Seahawks who plays linebacker on downs that may expect running plays, and defensive end on passing downs.

Danny Shelton was not only named on the All-American team he was named on the All-Academic American team as well. He is good on both stopping the run as well as sacking the quarterback. He is expected to be either a first or second round draft pick in the NFL. Whether he is a successful NFL player or not his academics show he should be successful in life.

Shaq Thompson played linebacker only the first two seasons for the Huskies, however, this season they decided to use him as a running back as well. They started the season using him as a running back in situations of short yardage; however, they started him in a couple games because two other running backs went down of injuries. In both games he ran for more than 100 yards. When the two running backs returned he went back to playing linebacker. Though he is only a junior expect him to be in the upcoming NFL draft. Depending on the team who drafts him he could be a linebacker or running back. Also, he could be used as a safety as well. When he came to the Huskies he actually was recruited as a safety; however, they need a linebacker. He has the speed to play safety in the NFL. Though he could play running back in the NFL likely he will play defense because he can have a longer career since running backs do not last as long.

It will be great to see all three of them play in the NFL. I always enjoy watching former Husky players in the NFL. It would be nice if at least one of them play for the Seahawks. Good luck to them. Look forward to see them in the Cactus Bowl. 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Three Wise Men

As you may be able to tell I am writing this month with a holiday theme. If you grew up going to church you know the story of the three wise men; also, known as the three kings. These men came from foreign lands to find the messiah being born. They followed the stars to Bethlehem. No one knows what land they came from.

If you have read the Old Testament or heard the story about King Solomon who asked God for wisdom; he is the wisest man to ever live. People from many places came to learn of his wisdom.

The thing about being wise is not necessarily mean that you are very smart as well. Being wise and being smart are two different things. We all know a lot of smart people but not necessarily very many wise people. Being smart means that you know a lot about many things but you may not be wise. Of course, you could be wise but not smart.

Sometimes we need to seek out people that are wise. Those people have a very special talent. They are those that can help us make decisions that can help change our lives. They may not give us the exact answer but give us different alternatives. Likely they will tell us things that we never considered before. The reason they would give us different alternatives is so we can find the right answer for ourselves. These men or women would be known as wise counselors. Depending on the decision we have to make it is likely we will have go to more than one. Also, we may already know the answers but we want someone to confirm it for us.

It is possible for a person to be wise as well as smart but we should not decide whether they are the same person. If you need wisdom but do not know anyone yourself that is wise you can go to someone you know that is smart, and they can refer you to a wise person. The thing is that there are a lot more smart people than there are wise people.

If I were you it would be much better for us to ask for wisdom over being smart. Wisdom can go further for us than being smart. As I said we can find a lot more smart people  than wise people. 

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Really Enjoying Football

This time of the year when your favorite NFL team is on a roll it really helps enjoying football. Also, it does not hurt they are the defending Super Bowl champions. Most experts do not give them a high mark in winning the Super Bowl because most defending champions do not repeat. The last champions to repeat were the New England Patriots.

The main reason the Seattle Seahawks are on a roll winning the last four games is that they are playing outstanding defense. You can see my previous writings about football. Though the defense has been great the offense has been struggling, and unable to score very many touchdowns. This past Sunday they beat San Francisco 49ers 17-7. What helped in the scoring was the referees charged the 49ers a roughing the passer penalty in the fourth quarter at a crucial time.  Later after the game the NFL said the penalty should not have been called. When I was watching the game I agreed the referees should not have charged the penalty. Without the penalty the Seahawks would have scored a field goal instead of a touchdown which would have made the 13-7. It would have allowed the 49ers to score a touchdown to win the game. The way the Seahawks defense was playing the chances of scoring a touchdown was not very good; however, the chance was there.

The Seahawks have two remaining games to play in the regular season. They play the Cardinals in Arizona this coming Sunday night, and the St.Louis Rams to end the season the following Sunday. They will be favored in both games because the way their defense has been playing, and the two teams have mediocre quarterbacks. Both teams are playing backup quarterbacks, and Arizona is on their third string quarterback. Arizona lost their second string quarterback in their last game against the Rams. What makes both teams dangerous is they play very good defense as well so likely the scores will be very low. The Seahawks will have to run the ball successfully and throw in some passes occasionally. Arizona especially is good at rushing the quarterback. Of course, the Seahawks with Russell Wilson at quarterback is good at scrambling and running the ball. He will need to do both on Sunday night. 

Monday, December 15, 2014

Peace on Earth

This time of the year a lot people if asked what they would want for the next year they would say peace on earth; though it sounds like a good idea it likely will not happen.

The media will want to think that those who are radical or fundamentalists are the bad guy which is far from the truth; being radical means that you have strong convictions, and fundamental means that you have strong beliefs of your religion whether you are Christian, Jews, Muslim, Buddhist or whatever. Those that are terrorists or are very dangerous are ones that have twisted the Truth of their religion. They believe the Truth in a manner that is no longer the Truth.

In politics it is said that some are far to the right or to the left, and many believe they are dangerous as well. Politics is like religion it those that take it beyond the fundamental beliefs of their party. Other words they are twisted as well. I think they probably belong in mental institutions.

Jesus Christ said that it is easy to love our friends; however, he commanded us to love our enemies. You may think you have no enemies but that is not true. If you have ever been bullied or slandered by anyone they would be considered enemies. Peace on earth would begin with us loving those who hurt us. Not any easy thing to do but a must. Why because otherwise we can feel like victims the rest of our lives.

So this holiday season when we say Peace on Earth what we should actually let peace on earth begin with me. The one true way to have peace is to have it in our own lives. We can have confusion all around us but have peace in our heart.

The way we can have peace is to begin with Love.  Many believe love is a feeling; however, real love is a choice. I may never have the feeling of love for you because we may never meet; however, I choose to love you because it is my choice. I write this blog to encourage each person who reads this; however, I write it as well because I choose to love. Whether people believe the same as I do or not, or have a different lifestyle than I do I have love for them. Love is the beginning of peace on earth. Share the love not only in December but all year long. As the rock group Queen once had a song called “We are the Champions”. Those of us that have peace in our hearts are champions. Also, going back to the 60s “Peace Baby”.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Under the Weather

I have an ear ache so I decided to write this short today. I want to be sure no one misses out on me. I am going to take it very easy today so I can become strong again.

This week the weather has been unusual in some respects. Thursday night we had the third storm of the week. This last one was the strongest of the three throughout the northwest. Like many we lost our power; thankfully it was for less than an hour. When sick having power off for a long length of time is especially not good. Today and the weekend we expect very nice weather.

Anyway, I am going to end it here. Everyone have a fantastic weekend. It is now less than two weeks until Christmas. 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Husky Men’s Basketball

The University of Washington Huskies men’s basketball team has started out in a positive direction. The writers that cover Pac-12 men’s basketball predicted just before the beginning of the season in November that the Huskies would finish the season in the league in sixth place. So far in non-league games the Huskies are 7-0. So it shows they are doing better than expected to get ready for the league season which starts on Jan. 2, 2015 against the University of California at Berkeley Bears.

Last week in their last game against 13th ranked San Diego State they won 49-36. Now in the latest poll the Huskies are ranked 17th.  Like this score indicates they are playing very good defense. In fact San Diego State in one of the top ranked defensive teams as well. The Huskies have been working on improving their defense. Last year the Huskies were poor on defense primarily because they lacked being a tall team. They actually started for guards. Shaun Kemp Jr. who starts this season at one of the forward positions had been ill at the beginning of last season so he was very weak the whole year. This year he is back in very good condition. Also, they start at the other forward position Jernard Jarreau who last year was injured in the first game of the season and missed the rest of the year. The Huskies have 7’0 center Robert Upshaw who comes off the bench and at this time leads the nation in blocked shots. The three players have made quite the difference to the Huskies especially on defense. Most of the guards have returned with additional experience. Of course, the real test does not happen until the Pac-12 season begins. Usually the league is very tough and I am sure this season will not be any different. If the Huskies can continue on having really good defense it should allow them to get into the NCAA tournament in March 2015.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Ho Ho Ho

I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all. Tis the season to be jolly; I know that for some it has been a naughty year while for others it is a good year. I would say for many it would be somewhere in between.

Tuesday night I decided to watch Rudolph the Red nose Reindeer.  It is having the 50th anniversary of the show running on television. I haven’t watched it for sometime but since it is the anniversary I decided too. I was not very old but I do remember watching it the very first year and for sometime after. It is probably my favorite Christmas show. I especially enjoy Burl Ives. He was quite the actor and singer. Though Rudolph was a misfit he became the greatest Reindeer of all time. I think many of us could feel like we are in his shoes. I believe if we read stories about many well known people things did not start out well for them. They were able to overcome obstacles in their lives to become great people. I believe it shows that any of us can become greater people regardless of the circumstances we began with. For some it may have been being poor, and for others it was coming from a bad family or overcoming an illness.

I know for me I have not always enjoyed the Christmas season. I have found myself to be lonely at times; however, I realize it is important for me to overcome the loneliness. This time of the year especially we can help out those who are struggling and having a poor year. It is important to think less of ourselves and more about others. Regardless of the dark place we may be living in at this time there are others who likely living in even darker places who can use our help. We can use our experience and encourage others. We can lift people out of the pit and into a better place. We can make this life a better place for others. It is important when we have the time to volunteer or be a mentor to others. This is really important to help others who are going through some of the same things we went through ourselves. We really can be good if we put our heart into it. I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holiday season. 

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Love Watching Defense

Watching the Seattle Seahawks playing the last three weeks with their high powered defense back is so enjoyable. I would say most people enjoy watching high powered offense but the Seahawks show defense can be enjoyed as well. This week on Sunday they played the Philadelphia Eagles who run a fast pace offense. In the same way the Seahawks slowed down the Denver Broncos to a crawl in the last Super Bowl they did the same way. Other teams should follow the Seahawks in the same manner playing defense; however, I would say other teams do not have the same personnel or talent the Seahawks have on defense. If you wonder where the defense had been before the last three weeks the Seahawks have had a lot of injuries on the defensive; however, most of the players are back now especially linebacker Bobby Wagner and safety Cam Chancellor who are key players on the defense. The defense was so dominated the Eagles only had 139 total yards for the game. It was the lowest total yardage game coach Chip Kelly of the Eagles has ever had in a game including his time at University of Oregon.

This coming Sunday December 14 the Seahawks will be playing the San Francisco 49ers again this time in Seattle. The Seahawks one the first game against 49ers on Thanksgiving 19-3; the game really was not even that close. On Sunday they lost to the Oakland Raiders so most expect the 49ers will lose to the Seahawks again. If the Seahawks defense is even close to what it have been the last three games they should win very easy. The 49ers offense has fallen apart the last three games. If the Seahawks continue to play this dominating defense they should be favored to win the Super Bowl again. 

Monday, December 8, 2014

More about Change?

About this time last year and early 2014 I stated writing about change. I used the word change instead of having a New Year’s resolution. The thing about the New Year’s resolution most people give up on it after a few days or weeks while change can be ongoing. Not just for the year but the rest of our lives.

I think change starts with our attitude and grows on depending what the change is. For some it may be losing weight or exercising. I think it can be how we think about ourselves or others. How we may treat better or get new friends because the ones we have bring us down. This can really be especially true for young people.

This year two things that have really made the news has been about being bullied and domestic violence. The whole thing about both of them is that if we have been involved in both either as a victim or the person who has been the aggressor we are all above it. We can be more than we think we are. Some began as victims and then became an aggressor. It is possible that it happened years back and it is no longer part of our lives but we still may feel bad about ourselves. We must love ourselves as well as others. We must decide we are no longer the victim or aggressor. This is where change comes in. I have said before that when it comes to change in our lives especially something like this we may need others for support. We may need to make new friends. It is important to be around other people that will give us a positive attitude.

Another part of change I mentioned was after the Seattle Seahawks won the Super Bowl in February. They became champions because they lived as champions. This is another way for us to live a fulfilling life. This season the Seahawks showed during the first half of the season it is not always easy to keep up with being champions. For them much of it was injuries to key players but they now in the last three games have the attitude back as champions. Some may call it their mojo. So they are now showing no matter how things go no matter what we are still champions. Our lives never stay the same. Circumstances happen that are not in our control.

Other changes that can happen in our lives can be life changing. It may be a change of our job or moving to another city. For several years my sister-in-law felt she really needed a change in her job; however, she was unable to find another job where she and my brother were living. There youngest son Danny was finishing high school so the timing was good to find a job in another city. She wanted to be close to her family including a brother and sister along with both parents. She was able to get another teaching position at a high school near her family. In fact, the job was the first one she had applied. It gave her a positive attitude as well since other jobs where they had lived never came about. My brother was able to keep his job while working out of their home. She is happier than she has been for some time. The hardest part was leaving students and other teachers behind that she had built relationships with. The whole thing about change is sometimes we have to leave behind something’s or people for the better good.

The thing about change is that it can be good but we must take a risk. Sometimes though we may find it is not as good as we think; however, the risk is important for the better good. It could lead us back to where we were as well but may never know without taking the chance. 

Friday, December 5, 2014

Holiday Travel

This year will be like every year before where a lot of people travel during the holiday season. Some travel by car and others by plane depending where family happens to be located. I expect people will travel by car this year that normally do not because gas prices are down.

I have done most of my plane travel during the holiday season. It has all happened during my adult life. Growing up our family was primarily in Washington State so if we traveled it was by car. Most years we would go visit cousins living in Seattle on Christmas Day. Of course, we would do so after opening Christmas presents we had under the tree. It was nice going to Seattle not only to see our cousins but open more presents. It was always good to show off the most important gifts we received especially the ones we got in Seattle. Later on when my sister got married we spent at least ten Christmases at her in-laws in Lakewood, Washington. It was a really good time getting together with both our family and brother-in-laws family and the food was delicious. This period of time was when my brothers would come home from college as well.

The first trip that I took to travel at Christmas time was when my sister, her husband, and two boys had moved to Quebec, Canada. Almost thirty years later they still live in Quebec, Canada. It was quite an experience for the first time trip. I never will forget the trip. I and my parents traveled to Montreal, Quebec. There was no direct flight to where my sister lived. My brothers by that timed both lived on the east coast so we met them in Montreal which had a lot of snow. What made it quite the trip was that my parents and I were fogged in at Sea-Tac International Airport for three days. I have to say they were the longest three days of my life. Of course, I had to do some complaining as well though it was no one’s fault. We finally got out on a flight that went from Boeing Field in Seattle that went to Dallas, Texas. We than caught a flight to Montreal. It was the only flight that got out of Seattle that day. I can say I got to know Sea-Tac Airport very well. I really enjoyed the rest of the trip, and there was no problem when returning back to Seattle.

I had another trip back to Quebec a few years later at Christmas time as well. This trip my parents did not go with me and I had no problem with fog. Besides my sister and her family my older brother Dick was there as well. He actually spent the Christmases with them. He did a great job of being a good Uncle. He rented a car, and I did the driving. That is a whole another story in itself. It was a really good time, and it was actually the last time I saw him since he died the following June.

I traveled to Minneapolis, Minnesota for Christmas a couple times when my brother Jack and family lived there. It was really nice to have an actual white Christmas as well. I spent a couple Thanksgivings when they lived in St.Louis, Missouri as well as a Christmas. I expect in the future I will travel back at some point to my sister’s in Quebec and to my Brother Jack’s home as well. There is nothing more special than to spend the holiday season with family and if it is to travel somewhere than a bonus.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Husky Football

I have been a University of Washington Huskies football fan since I was young kid. I started being a fan listening to the games on the radio. The first quarterback the Huskies had when I became a fan was Sonny Sixkiller who was a Native American from Oregon. I really like him a lot I think mainly because of his name. Also, the team was very successful under his leadership. I still see him sometimes on television doing commercials for Casinos and golf courses.

This season the Husky football went 8-5 in the regular season under new football coach Chris Peterson who replaced Steve Sarkisian who went to coach University of Southern California after five seasons at University of Washington. Sarkisian previously had been an assistant coach at University of Southern California. Chris Peterson pervious had coached at Boise State University for eight seasons.  He was very successful at Boise State having several teams in the top ten in the country; however, he decided it was time to go to a higher division of football. He had been offered other positions before but thought the Huskies was the best fit for him.

Listening to some on local sports radio they think the Huskies could have had a better record than 8-5 and do not consider it a successful season. The Huskies did lose a game against University of Arizona which they lost by one point by a field goal with no time left in the clock. They had a turnover with about 90 seconds   remaining in the game. They had several turnovers plus a missed field goal in the game. Otherwise they actually dominated the game on both offense and defense.

I believe the team was successful overall because they have a young team especially on the offense. The starting quarterback Cyles Miles was suspended for the first game and did not participate in spring practice because of off the field problems. He quarterbacked the rest of the games except having to leave in one because of a concussion. The last two games against Oregon State and Washington State I could see some growth in his play which is a good sign because it was just after the Arizona game. Next season he will be a junior and should be more confident. Of course, he will have competition for the quarterback position.

On the offensive side the Huskies showed depth at wide receiver. In fact one of the receivers John Ross went over to the defensive side to play cornerback the last couple games of the season. Most likely he will go back to wide receiver next season since he prefers to play offense. Also, he is very explosive as a kickoff return. In fact, he scored touchdowns on two returns. He could have had another one, however, a penalty cost him a touchdown. I could see him being at least a kickoff returner in the NFL.

Another player for the Huskies who showed his versatility was Shaq Thompson. He started the season as a linebacker on defense, however, his speed and toughness the Huskies decided to use him as a running back when they especially needed a first down or a touchdown. Because of injuries he started two games as a running back and ran for over hundred yards in each game. When the other running backs returned for the last couple games he requested return to linebacker. He prefers to play linebacker but played running back for the team. Shaq Thompson is a junior, however, most experts believe he will go into the NFL next season. With his versatility I am sure teams will look at him for both linebacker and running back. Also, he is a finalist for The Paul Hornung Award for the most versatile player in major college football.

On the defense the line was the most experienced and strongest on the team. Danny Shelton defensive lineman is expected to be a high draft pick; next season though they will need to replace him and a couple other guys. The linebackers are strong and have depth since the team was allowed to use Shaq Thompson as a running back. The defensive backs were the least experience positions on the team; however, I could see quite the improvement over the season. Next season they should be a major part making the Huskies a very good defensive team.

The Huskies do have one remaining game to play. They should know by the weekend who they will play in a bowl game. Also, during the off season Coach Peterson will have his first real class of recruits that he will call his own.

Until next time Go Huskies!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014


There is nothing more power in our lives than words. The saying sticks and stones may hurt me but words won’t hurt me is totally wrong. I am sure most of us had words spoken to or over us as children that still affect us today. I know that in my life I still think of some words said to me. I now try not to let it affect me but that is not always easy.

I believe it is important that we think about words before speaking them or writing them. We are much better off if we can speak positive words into people instead of negative. The thing though since childhood we are so accustomed to joking or teasing others. I know that I did not being a part of a joke or being teased. I know that I am not much better than anyone else. I know that I have made fun of others myself. The differences though I have felt bad about it later while others I do not think so much.

Words can be very positive especially in music, poetry, books, movies, and theater. There is nothing like hearing music of the Beatles. So much of their music was expressing themselves about the experiences they went through. Songs like Penny Lane was about a real place. If you read the bible there are all the psalms that were written mostly by King David of Israel. In English they are best in King James translation. I do not know Hebrew but I am sure they are even more powerful. Of course, if you are familiar with Shakespeare’s writings than you know how wonderful they are. There are many other wonderful writers that I can name as well.

As far as my blog here I want to be sure to write things that will lift others up. I try to choose my words very carefully. I think of this like being a journal as well. I really enjoy writing this blog to encourage everyone along with telling stories sometimes about Gig Harbor and my childhood. I take as much out of this as well. Like my pastor says sometimes about his sermons it is like therapy for him. I feel the same thing here as well.

So I believe it is important that we think more about what we have to say than we do. It is OK to joke around but we should not make other people the butt of the jokes. We can never leave jokes out of our lives because they can so often release us. Since we get stressed out in our lives we need something to make us feel a lot better.

It is important for parents to speak with their children to encourage them not to make fun of other children. No one really likes to be a butt of other’s jokes.  I believe it happens because kids are insecure; to take things out on other kids make you feel better; at least for a time.  Parents need to always speak positive words into their children. I know some parents want their children to be just like them, or maybe the way they wanted to be.  Every child is special and they have their own unique gifts. We need to encourage them to be the best in their uniqueness.

Words can hurt us. 

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Apple Cup

First of all for those who wonder what the Apple Cup means.  In college football in state rivals that when they play each other they have a name for the game; so the University of Washington and Washington State University play each other it is called the Apple Cup. The reason for the name is that apples are largest export from the state of Washington. Not only do they go throughout the United States they export to other parts of the world as well.

Many teams in college football play the rivalry game at the very end of the season. Only once have either the University of Washington Huskies or Washington State Cougars have ended a season playing someone else. 

Most years the Huskies have been favored over the Cougars; however, the rivalry is such no matter how good or bad either team is they usually play a very good game against each other. In fact several times the Cougars have won have kept the Huskies out of a big bowl game or the national championship. This year the Huskies were favored by seven points so most people thought the game could go to either team. The game was played in Pullman, Washington the home of the Cougars. The temperature was around nineteen degrees and it had snowed in the morning so Cougar fans thought they had a real good chance in winning. Unfortunately for them it was not the case. The Huskies won the game 31-13. The game really was not even that close. The Cougars did not score until the fourth quarter. What made this score surprising is the Cougars averaged over thirty points a game for the season, and this game was the lowest points they scored all year. The Huskies dominated the game both on the offense and the defense. The Huskies have had to work all season to improve their game. I will write more about that in a couple days. The game ended the season for the Cougars while the Huskies will go to a bowl game likely in January. Do not know who they will play right now; however, they should know no later than next week. 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Beginning of December

Welcome to the month of December. Here in Western Washington has started out cold. The highs today will be in the mid 30s. Compared to places in the Midwest and East Coast it would be warm.

Over the weekend we had a little bit of snow.  Like most years it did not stay around for very long. I do not expect much snow the rest of December though it would be nice surprise if it did. I have never seen it snow on Christmas. I remember once in the mid 1973 it did snow the day after Christmas. It is nice whenever we do get a few inches of snow that will last three or four days. Early last week the mountains did get some snow. There were some delays driving on the highways. Right now the ski resorts are open for sledding but little for skiing. I was really never really into skiing myself. Whenever going sledding was a challenge as well. I enjoyed the time; however, I always ended up in the mountain lodge to get warm up. Also, I enjoyed basketball too much to risk of getting broken bones while skiing.

Yesterday November 30 I remember my Brother Dick’s birthday. He would be 61 years old. He died in June 1992. If you look up one of my early blogs you would see my writing about him. We had some very special Christmas’s together.

I believe it is important that we remember all the family members and friends who are no longer with us this time of the year. In fact, this time of the year just does not feel the same; however, our thoughts of them make the Christmas and holiday season still very special.

It is amazing that 2014 is coming to a close. So many years just go by so fast. I have been told the older we get the faster it gets which seems very true. I find it is important to look back on the year for the high and the lows. Also, think about the changes we have made in our lives this year. We must start thinking about more changes we want to make in 2015. It is important we continually evolve. The most important thing is that we have a purpose in this life more for others than for ourselves. I hope to continue lifting others up especially in joy and laughter. Also, make as much peace as you can with others. Until next time have a really good time.