Archive for November, 2013

I read the Illustrated Classic Edition of Treasure Island to my boys as they were supposed to be drifting off to sleep. When finished reading the book I started the same kind of book for Swiss Family Robinson. It was originally written by a professor, Johann Wise, born in 1781, the son of a pastor and a man of faith himself.

So far I have only read six chapters and I feel just awful about it. It seems every time I pick this book up to read to my boys some exotic animal is killed. It would be more understandable if the family had no food and were starving to death but the author makes it very clear that these marooned folks have more then enough from the beginning. It makes reading the kids a bed time story more like reading a horror story.

I figured that since I got this far with it I may as well make it a learning exercise by explaining to them how humans in the past didn’t think much of animals and well, I just had to add, women.  Although much has changed and education has improved it is still a problem to this day.

Many of us now understand that you don’t just go to some newly discovered island and start killing random animals. Some of us have shed the god image that humans have adorned themselves with for centuries and chosen to open our minds up to the idea that animals and other genders and colors may also have thoughts, feelings, intelligence and such.

I’m not a vegetarian, but I respect the idea. Actually if I were in a better financial state I wouldn’t mind being vegetarian. But every now and then I seriously crave meat. Still, I don’t think it’s good to over due it. And in the case of the Robinsons, they had an abundance as it was and didn’t need to kill more to survive. I would say they had quite the god complex. If that story were true and more folks like them settled on the Island I am pretty sure all it’s resources and beauty would be used up and long gone by now.

I have seem the film several times but it’s been a long time so I don’t recall exactly how the film handles it. I don’t remember if I had read the book before or not.

I went through the small book and roughly wrote down most of the animals they killed. I may have missed some.

Chapter 1

The dogs lived and so did the cow, mule, goats, sheep, pigeons, roosters, pigeons & ducks from the wrecked ship lived at least at first.

Found on island, lobster, oysters, agouti (native pig) for food

Chapter 2

had lobster and biscuits, goose, dutch cheese,

found – fields of sugar cane, leafy green plants, coconuts,

Tuck (the dog) killed a monkey, the baby monkey happily attaches to one of the sons as a pet.

brought back from wreck: wine, butter, hams, sausages, sacks of grain, potatoes, hammocks,

chapter 3 & 4

shoots a shark to save animals swimming to shore

found on island: turtle eggs, figs,

kills porcupine then abandoned it

shoots and eats flamingo

caught 15lb fish

kills kangaroo

chapter 5

eats the kangaroo

finds on wreck: every species of European fruit, pear, peach, apricot, chestnut trees & vine shoots. (For planting)

kills and eats tortoise (sea turtle)

chapter 6 & 7

planted successful garden near water fall

kills and eats iguana after tickling it’s tummy

found guava trees, sweet acorns, cocoa trees

kills momma buffalo out of defense due to dogs

cuts hole in baby buffalo’s nose for string

tames an eagle after it killed a parrot

built bee hive

their animals reproduced

found onagra (wild donkey)

Chapter 8

discovered salt mine

area full of fish and game

Chapter 10 & 11

kills stalking boa constrictor

kills and eats eel

tired but failed to kill wild cats

kills ostrich takes home one egg leaving the rest for later

Chapter 12

kills, skins and eats bears

they relocate troop of antelope to hunt and tame

kills walrus, uses head to decorate boat

Chapter 15

kills lion and lioness out of self defense

swiss family robinson cover 001


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Ok, I’ve decided what kind of home we need. We need a warehouse. Yep, that should do. Or an old furniture store.


You know, live at one end and have it set up to just heat the area in need at the time.

Kara is really into making stuff her self so a big area for the girls to make cos play outfits and clothes and crafts and plenty of room for Hannah’s art.


The boys could use the room for ridding bikes and scooter stuff when it’s snowing which is a lot here.

And I would have room for roller skating and making a hover board for the kids and I to play with and other crazy stuff.


Of course it would take time to collect all the tools, but at least we’d have a place to put them.

Ok, living in this small home and still not figuring out where to put a lot of our stuff and a small town with nothing to do and no friends makes me dream big. sigh!

Hannah thinks the Warehouse idea is terrible because they are so big and freaky. But I think it would totally awesome!

Now to find an available one for rent, very low rent. Hey, I can dream!

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a place book

to keep up with

your peers

to navigate

the waters straight

and some with a curve

a free place

to manipulate

or just say

a kind word

add to drama

start your own

or send love

to another

you decide

it’s your choice

to hide

or to be


you can block

or you can add

you can pretend

or chose to be

the honest hand

make enemies

find your friends

watch a clip

laugh or get mad

accept the different

put a line

in the sand

it’s your decision

no matter how much

you blame another

just like walking

out your door

or too afraid

and staying in

if hiding is

your personal style

I like the choice

the possibilities

and ability

to not lose

old and new friends

but it’s my thing

it’s my life

though I may not

completely understand

you go your way

you come or stay

it’s up to you

it’s your life



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pictures of her with you  poem

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I’m a believer in dreams, both awake ones and sleeping ones. I believe it’s good to have both and they can in rich ones life.

I don’t always remember my sleeping dreams and when I do if I don’t write it down or talk about it right away I usually forget what it was I dreamed pretty quickly. I understand that if I would write them down as soon as I wake I would improve my dream memory, but, “NOBODY’S GOT TIME FOR DAT!”. Well, maybe I have time, I don’t know about you, but when I first wake up the last thing I wanna do is go hunting around for a pen and paper. I have in the past had a pen and paper near the bed but that doesn’t mean I can find it when I have just woken up and if I do find it I’m clumsy as all get out and usually bump it and it falls on the floor or behind the bed side table or something like that. So, I tell myself if I rethink the dream and go over it real good in my head I’ll remember it. Sadly that actually doesn’t work for me.


Dreams, while sleeping, are a great place to work things out though. They are a place where there is no time or laws like gravity and so on. So you can try what would normally be the impossible. When you have no limits you have more room for figuring things out. Even nightmares are great training places. I often tell people that if there is a scary creature in your dream chasing you, stop running, turn around and attempt to give the scary thing a big hug. I say attempt because the odds are you will never actually get to hug it, it will either suddenly go away or the dream will suddenly change. Laughing at something scary in the dream can also have the same effect. There is exceptions but that is the general thing that will happen. Now, when you’re awake and you are faced with something scary, actually hugging it may be a terrible and dangerous thing to do. But, the concept is still true. Hugging the scary in your dream is a metaphor, which is what most dreams are made of. I explained the concept of “running to the roar” to my daughter the other night. While still trying to get it she asked if that would actually work in real life with a real lion. I told her I didn’t know and hoped to never have to be in that situation. But the concept is still good for everyday experiences we do face.

Inception-2(Pic from Inception)

In case you are unfamiliar with the concept of “running to the roar”, I’ll go over it real quick. They say… an old lion with rotten teeth and such will roar real loud to get the animals to run away. On the other side where the animals are running away to there’s waiting the rest of the younger lions ready to attack the on coming food. So, basically if the animals would actually run to where they hear the roar their chance of survival is actually grater.

article-2413332-1BA52E4B000005DC-407_634x343(From Katie Perry’s Eye of the Tiger video. I know, it’s not a lion, but it’s the same idea. And a really cool pic!)

While we may not face an actual old lion or the scary monster from our dream we do face our own fears and difficulties on a regular basis. Our monster may be a bully at school, a mean boss, a test, a ladder, a spider and so on and so on.


When I was nineteen I decided it was time to conquer being shy. I had a fear of people and I also had a fear of handling money. I was working at Burger King at the time so I had the opportunity to face both monsters at the same time. I had become an expert at everything in the back of the restaurant so now it was time to push myself to the front. I told my boss I wanted to learn the register. I remember him replying, “are you sure?” So he put me on the register and started training me. For the most part it worked. I got over my fear of people and I wasn’t afraid to handle money any more. I’m not a mathematically inclined type person so I have never wanted to go into anything finance related to this day, but I was satisfied to not be intimidated by it. Although I got over my shyness and when I mention that I still have moments of shyness people think it’s funny, it’s true. I do have moments of shyness but I have learned and taught myself how to get past it when needed. For one, in the past I lost out on a lot of opportunities because of being shy which is one of the many reasons I set out to conquer it. So even now I still give myself pep talks in order to build the necessary courage. I do it in my head which is why most folks laugh when I mention my occasional shyness.

coronado.ferry.shops(Burger King at the Old Ferry Landing.)

I used to have horrible nightmares, most ended with night paralysis. Facing my sleep nightmares initially made me stronger inside as well. Sure, it’s not exactly the same. But when you really investigate a dream and why you had it you can learn a lot for when you’re awake.

A recent dream I had comes to mind. I dreamed I was visiting an old folks type home. There were several grown children of the old folks there taking care of their parents. Suddenly I became very sad, I was regretting not having any children. I realized that when I get old I wont have anyone to look after me and take care of me and love me like the folks I saw around me at the home. I was overwhelmed with grief. It was one of those dreams were the emotion feels so real that when you wake you have to tell yourself it was a dream and not reality. After getting that into my head I thought the dream was just odd. Then I started really thinking about what it could have meant. I believe the answer is actually obvious. I am thankful for my four children and I do not regret having them, but I will admit there are times I wonder what life would have been like if I had not had any kids. I always conclude that I would have regretted it cause I know myself and even on very difficult moments I know this is true. I believe the dream is just confirming the same thing.

I had another dream recently that I can’t quite figure out still. I dreamed my kids and I were taking a tour of a military facility. We stopped at this one desk and this man began giving us a safety warning. Hannah and I were listening but Kara was meandering away. I kept trying to get her attention because I felt it was important for her to hear what the man had to say. Finally she focused and listened but instead of the man repeating the warning he just went on about something else that wasn’t important. Now, I get this part of the dream, it totally adds up and relates to how I struggle with Kara sometimes. It’s the next part that I don’t get.

The next part of the dream Kyle, my eight year old, was dressed up as an old fashioned little Dutch girl. There were two ladies near by who thought he was just the cutest thing ever. One of them just couldn’t seem to help herself and picked him up to give him a tight squeeze. I knew he wouldn’t like this so I tried to get him back from her but she held on. He wasn’t complaining but I could tell he didn’t care for it.


Now that I am writing this down I am actually starting to get it. How funny! I’m thinking that lady may be a part of me. After all, Kyle is my youngest and he’s adorable when he’s not being a brat. His not really complaining makes sense too because so far he is trying to hold on to being part baby himself. It really is a struggle it seems for both of us.

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rogue waveI saw this picture somewhere and it brought back a memory… or two.

First this reminded me of something that actually happened to me. I don’t know how tall the wave actually was but I know it was a pretty dang big rogue wave that crashed on top of some friends, my mom and sister and me while were chatting on the beach at night in New Port Beach, Ca. We were actually standing far from the water line so we weren’t worried about having our backs to the water. Then suddenly it crashed on us and we were soaking wet from head to toe. It was like natures idea of a practical joke. We thought it was hilarious. Thankfully there wasn’t a rip tide and it didn’t pull us back out.

Talking about rogue waves, the first one I ever experienced was while my family and I were on a trip from Santa Barbara to Dana Point on the boat we lived on called the Moon Shadow. It was a 41′ Garden ketch.  (In other words, a sail boat.) We were still new to the Moon Shadow and my mom, sister and I were still new to sailing and the ocean in general. My dad had been doing Ensenada races with some friends from work for a while and learned a thing or two. His buddies hadn’t actually been very good teachers. He learned mostly by being the only sober one left to sail the boat home.

It had gotten late and my sister and I were in bed in our parents bed. Their bed was a tad bigger then a single mattress bed. For some reason we were laying on top of a silky sleeping bag. My mom was passed out in my sisters bed. My sister and I had the two bench/beds in the main room. They were a tad more then half the size of a single mattress and were actually quite cozy. My dad had made himself comfortable on a folding beach chair with his legs propped up on the helm so he could steer with his feet. It was a lovely night out in the ocean under the stars.

Since it was night my dad couldn’t see the rogue wave coming right at us. It hit us full on and tipped the boat sideways. My sister and I slid right off the bed and toppled onto the floor. We thought it was funny and started laughing as we untangled ourselves from the blankets that fell on top of us and tried to get up. My dad said he was really worried about us till he heard us laughing.

When the wave hit he was thrown across the boat and got caught in the  safety lines. Although it wasn’t a pleasant experience for him he was very grateful he didn’t get tossed overboard which could have easily happened.  When we pulled into port he bought some safety harnesses and implemented rules about when and how to wear them from then on.

My mom, by the way, slept through the whole thing.


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So, yesterday I went to Wausau to do some much needed shopping. I pulled out my only thick sweat pants that I got for about $5 at Walmart a year or two or so ago when the weather started turning colder. I was disappointed to find that the inside of the pants were all balled up and it irritated my skin. I’ve used them off and on over my PJ’s when I had to run out the door for a short time to get something done but otherwise when I want to wear something comfortable I have been using my really thick sweat type pants. I have blue jeans that fit fine but my belly still hurts after having them on for over an hour so when I can get away with it I use the thin sweat pants. But the weather is only due to get colder and colder so I finally broke down and went shopping for a thinker better sweat pant.

I decided not to shop for them at Walmart because I wanted a better quality so I chose to go check out Old Navy. They usually have pretty good stuff that is better made yet still in style and often not over priced.

On my way there I recalled the part in the Book called The Secret where they challenge you to practice positive thinking in small ways, like for a front parking spot when shopping. Many many years ago I used to actually do that and it, from what I can remember, always worked. But, it’s been a really long time, still I thought, why not give it a go again. After all I am actively working on positiving, myself. Yes, I made that word up! It means to make ones self positive. So there!

While putting the thought of the closest parking spot in my head my head immediately didn’t want to take parking from handicap people. Actually, I’m normally not a front parking type, I enjoy the walk. It’s like free exercise! But still, I wanted to practice being positive so I decided I would get the front parking space other then handicap spaces.

I saw the Old Navy sign along the strip mall and pulled into the lot. Sure enough the front parking space looked empty. Actually the lot was pretty much empty. There were about four or five cars there but still the closest parking space was open. It had a handicap sign turned backward for the space in front of it but it was apparently not a handicap space it’s self. I still didn’t want to park there so I parked a little ways away. Just after I parked a lady pulled into the spot. I thought, “Aw, cool! I guess I opened it up for her! Sweet!” Then I saw some folks heading into the store. One was either an Amish or Mennonite man. I should know better by now but I was told when I lived in California that the Amish and Mennonite do their own stuff, like farming, sewing and basically have nothing to do with normal society. Well, the Mennonite do missionary work but still they were very secluded unless on a mission. In Arkansas I was surprised to learn they actually eat at Cece’s pizza. But, since living in Wisconsin I have learned that both groups shop and eat at just about any where anyone else does.

So, I shouldn’t really have been surprised to see that man walk into Old Navy. But then I noticed the sign above the door and it said Bed Bath and Beyond, not Old Navy. I didn’t even bother trying to think a front parking spot to Old Navy after that. I was just happy to pull out and then back in a bit closer to the right story I actually wanted to shop at. Besides, I had a good laugh at myself.

Oh yeah, I did find a nice pair of thick sweat pants at a reasonable price. Just so you know.

About that… I do find it annoying the way woman’s clothes are made. It’s not jut Old Navy, actually Old Navy does pretty good in some areas that other stores don’t. But this time even Old Navy blew it. I went around feeling all of the woman’s sweat pants of various types and they all were pretty thin. It’s winter for cryin-out-lout! And not just winter, but winter in Wisconsin! The men’s department had less of a selection but the sweats were thicker so I got a pair of men’s sweats. They have an Old Navy logo on them so now I’m extra cool! I mean, nice and warm.


And that wasn’t all, there was yet one more good funny to come after the kids got out of school.

I just couldn’t get the stubborn lid to the Apple Cider Vinegar (The kind with the Mother in it) opened so I asked my 15 year old daughter (some know her as Hannah) to help loosen it for me. She took the bottle and gave it a try, then let me know she got it opened.

Now, just so you know, my lovely daughter Hannah just loves to steal drinks of what ever it is I’m drinking, it’s like her favorite past time or something.

So I stood there somewhat puzzled watching her put the bottle in slow motion to her lips. Half my brain was wondering if she knew what was in the bottle and the other half of my brain wondered if I should have a camera filming this.

She took a drink from the bottle, I watched for her face to change but it didn’t. Then she handed it back to me and meandered over to the water container. Half way to it she let out a small exclamation…finally!

Of course we had a good laugh about it after she drank some water. I’m not a big prankster but this was one opportunity that presented it’s self to me and I just couldn’t pass up. I also let her know how very good the vinegar was for her. lol

apple cider vinegarPictures were found on Google search.

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