I have come unglued, finally

rio 3I suspect that I am not the only one that has spent an abnormal amount of time glued to the spectacle that is the summer olympics.

Soccer, volleyball, basketball, wrestling, rugby, diving, plus plus, and now I confess, at last the closing ceremonies.

It’s a people show. You watch teams win and receive a medal and, if you are like me, you wish both sides could win, that there were more medals for these amazing people.

rio 2Now it’s no surprise I enjoyed the beach volleyball, and for more than the reason you think (I saw those raised eyebrows!) – two people in great shape covering a court, making great saves and diving all over the place. It’s all action, and these athletes are in super shape. They know they look good and enjoy being young and admired, so they should. Those abs were earned!

What I also liked about the beach volleyball was the sportsmanship. The teams are always hugging their teammate regardless of whether the point is won or not. These teams travel together, share meals together, compete together, train together and win or lose together. At all times these partnerships are uplifting and encouraging one another. One bad attitude and the team is broken. rio 1Wow, I can learn from beach volleyball players. When you hit the sand, hit it smiling and get up, dust yourself off and play the next point. Enjoy the game, and keep supporting the team.

So much people watching, and many stories of huge athleticism. A marathoner from Argentina, Federico Bruno, stood out as he finished his marathon race in pain (read more here) but managed to finish the race. He ran the last 12 kilometres in intense cramping pain but finished by crabbing sideways and still finished the race in under 3 hours beating other competitors. An runner has strong leg muscles, those cramps would have been torture.rio 4 He managed to finish somehow. Another opportunity to learn for me.

Life may not go as hoped for but do the best you can, and in my marathon I will keep it in mind. glasses moving

How about you? What did you learn from Rio?

Thanks for reading, and commenting, your suggestions are welcome.

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Some things don’t change, Thank heaven

SAMSUNG DIGIMAX 420

Holding On.

IN the last 36 years, I’ve owned a whole bunch of different cars, moved strata to house to strata to house to strata to house again. Presidents, and Prime Ministers have come and gone. My career has changed. I have picked up, and changed hobbies and sports numerous times.  I have watched our beloved daughter and son go from swing sets to cell phones.

Almost everything has changed, but one thing hasn’t.

organ donationOver the years I have been healthy, in the hospital for months at a time, and been healthy for decades.

I have lost contact with old friends, reestablished contact, and made new friends.

Certainly I know I have changed, but not everything has. I’m a blessed man.

It’s not my anniversary, that was 4 months ago. But this song reminded me of my lovely Susan. It’s been a long time (March 8, 1980) since we drove away from a church in our rusted out Honda Civic, but the journey still continues, and she was the one in 1980, and she’s still the one in 2016.

couple smileys cuddling

ah shucks

 

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Animals two by two – line up!

rain 1The skies opened up yesterday and a waterfall fell from the clouds. Crashes of thunder, flashes of lightning – the full meal deal!

I was rooting for a good rain, but not the full house, royal flush I was dealt last night. The gutters on my patio were overflowing, and the drains could not handle the volume. whoa!

My fertile mind envisioned animals lining up two by two, but thankfully there was no ark in sight.:)

Yes, I was hoping for rain because I had cut my front lawn and have enjoyed not manually watering the lawn for the last few weeks due to unseasonal rain this year. Lazy? Perhaps but I would prefer to call me a naturalist – mother nature is always thorough and the water is soft and pure.

But the storm gusts beat up my plants, topping over the ones in pots and my lovely wife was so helpful. Go! Your plants are toppling over, they should be moved. Thanks honey.

AmazinglyGene-Kelly-2 the waterfall actually increased as I moved my plants and then my helpful wife pointed out my car window was left open. (I did appreciate her pointing that out, just wish it had been before the rain started.)

Again I dashed out to close the window, and again mother nature turned it up!

Thanks MN, but I’m already wet and numb but no matter – I love the rain.

2013-05-31 14.02.33

Okanagan Lake

This morning the lawn was pleasantly saturated, the lawn sparkled. The plants are all watered and overall in the beautiful tranquil stillness I was now soaking up a magnificent blue sky.

The air smells great, and another day I don’t have to move a sprinkler around.

oh yeah! (fist pump!)

ducks

bye

Thanks for reading, comments and feedback appreciated.

 

 

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The Value of a Friend

It is often said “blood is thicker than water” meaning that family relationships are always more important than friends.

My blood relatives are important to me but I certainly have and do appreciate the many good friends I have had in my life that have been kind and supportive to me especially during the times I was sick or facing trials.

I spoke to my son and daughter when they were growing up about picking good friends, and how to be a good friend. I believe they have seen in my life how I have had special friends and the difference between friends and acquaintances. I have been blessed.

The value of a friend is priceless. They lift up when you need it, and no matter how long between get-togethers – the friendship is not diminished.

To you reader I wish the blessing of good friends, who call you up out of the blue to check on you, who drop in to give you a hug, who include you in prayer without being asked.

Yes, blood is thicker than water, but none of us,  I’m sure, underestimates the inestimable value of a good friend.

Thanks for reading, comments and suggestions always welcome.

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We all have one, at least

ImageSunny, but still cool outside because of the time of day, 6:30 a.m., and I was enjoying my plain coffee with a friend whose Starbucks order of double expresso plus plus was just impossible to memorize.

I met this friend years ago at a Toastmaster conference, he was competing in a speech contest and I mic’d him along with the other contestants. He didn’t win that year, but he was infected.

He was infected with a desire to win, to practice, to study, and to learn how to give award winning speeches, and to win!. To this end, he worked, travelled to study with the more experienced and gave speeches, and more speeches.

Two years ago at a District 21 fall conference, he did it, he won first place and was invited to travel to Las Vegas and compete against District winners from all over the world. My friend simply glows when he talks about the week he had in Las Vegas. He gave speeches, he met contest winners, he received advice and helpful gifts (feedback) but didn’t win.

He thinks he did win though because the experience changed him, it was so much fun.  He works more and more on his speechcraft now and helps others grow and better themselves for free at every opportunity.

calvin wagonMy friend is young at heart, young in energy, young in enthusiasm and passion but has a few grey hairs that somehow enhance his boyish grin.

Dave, my only regret is that I didn’t discover Toastmasters earlier in life. I wish I had known sooner, found Toastmasters sooner.”

Those words struck home. He is having a blast, doing something he loves and interacting with others, making and renewing friendships almost daily through his discovering of Toastmasters.

What if he had passed when invited to be a guest at a Toastmaster meeting? All of the richness would have missed him.

It may be Toastmasters, or it may be something else but we all have regrets, at least one. Is there a holiday, an experience, a place in the world, a food – anything you have the vision to experience – start the steps to realization so those words “My only regret is that I had *** sooner,” are not your words.

Good luck to you reader for discovering your passion, your zest in life and dodging life’s regrets. 

Thanks for reading, I hope you will let me know what you like about my blog posts. If you want to learn about Toastmasters by being a guest (they are everywhere) – Click Here.  Guests are free for a meeting. 

As a treat – I will add a speech from an international conference – enjoy!

 

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Not just survival, someone gave me life

When someone said yes, allowing their loved one’s organs to be donated, it did not mean I was going to survive, no it meant I was going to live again.

Today I celebrate my re-birth (transplant day) but I am also thinking about those waiting for a transplant.

Utah - Arches and Canyonlands-11Living on dialysis is something I did, I had no choice. I lived doing peritoneal dialysis until I got an infection and nearly died. I did four exchanges a day, even when I went to work, every day, even Christmas. Four times daily, and each and every time I hated it, but it gave me another day to hope for the call.

Then I did hemodialysis three times a week for 5 hours, better but worse because I had to be so careful about fluid intake.

July 6, 1987 –  I got the call, they had a kidney for me. Hopeful, excited, nervous I arrived at the hospital. They shaved me chest to knees, and painted me with something to help prevent infection during surgery. Midnight they wheeled me into the operating room, a team all masked waiting for my arrival. I prayed with my surgeon for success.

My life was all possible because someone took 2 minutes one day to become an organ donor. Two minutes to give me and likely others as well more than survival,  a chance at living again.

The donor did give more to me than survival. Freedom from dialysis, energy, freedom from depression, freedom from anxiety, ability to enjoy my family, ability to travel, and so much more.

Every day in Canada 14, yes 14 people get the news that their kidneys are failing and they need to go on dialysis. Those people are added to others, who are waiting, hoping to live to be a recipient. Years waiting on dialysis, sometimes dying while waiting.

organ donationPlease, please don’t wait until one of your loved ones are on a list to become an organ donor, or even worse until you are on one.

The way the odds are, you are more likely to need an organ than to donate one. Would you want your loved one’s on a list, waiting for years?

Help someone else live again, stop their survival and give them a life.

Less than two minutes – it’s the right thing to do – register now to be an organ donor, and tell your family. If you live in BC, do it by clicking here. 

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Don’t Go breakin my heart

For a couple weeks now, we have had another girl in the house. She is temperamental, one minute friendly, the next she is spitting and hissing.

The girl, is my daughter’s cat “Africa“. Africa is  a rent free boarder for a few weeks who alternates from two personality types, a dangerous one, and an irresistible one. Is it a gender thing? Forget I said that🙂

Nah, I hope not – in kitten years she is probably like 70, so she mainly sleeps 16 hours a day. But daily she uses her prerogative and  demands neck and back massages that we enjoy providing. I alternate from giving her a wide swath of space, to jumping to her beck and call.

Last night I was sitting on the couch and she jumped up, stalked across my chest flopping down an inch from my face to purr and enjoy some massage time.  Then just as suddenly she stomped up and kicked off me without so much as a “call me?”

She is a heartbreaker, but we love her. She’s a sweetie, and gonna break my heart.

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Pets, the critters get under the skin, lucky us

When I was a young tyke, my family lived in a small town, Quesnel, BC.  It seems a kind of Mayberry and that would make me Opie I suppose.  (are you whistling the theme song “the fishing hole…

Source: Pets, the critters get under tLazy daze today he skin, lucky us

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Resisting S for the life you really want

Forgive me please my sporadic writing of late. I have a project I am working on that will be concluded soon, but I am jotting down thoughts and ideas for blog posts I want to share, and that I hope you will enjoy reading.

I find writing very meaningful, and the blog community, and the number of positive comments I have received on my little blog just amazes me.

ImageBack to my post ~A short sashay from my home is a mall and, of course, a Starbucks coffee house. I enjoy occasional morning coffee visits with friends and recently a conversation included a friend’s announcement that he and his wife had bought a home in Vancouver. (Nice, but not of much interest to you – right?) Then he said ” we had settled for years renting, and were very comfortable, but decided what we really wanted was our own place.

Insert light bulb here in the dusty confines of my skull!

They had settled, were comfortable, but it wasn’t what they really wanted together.

This had me think, about “Settling” and Comfort levels.

There are so many areas where we settle, not just living quarters either. Are we settling because having the friends, the job, the hobbies, the health, the relationships we really want are unattainable?

I think not, the point is that we know we are settling and can do better, and are not really living the live we want for ourselves. That leads to regret I suspect.  Click & Read here my post about the Top Five Regrets! 

I wonder if people can first identify and gradually stop settling, start changes one thing at a time, no matter how small and then do something else a few weeks later. Imagine 26 things you could change, improve in your life, in one year. How would we be transformed?

live lifeI am grateful for many parts of my life, and in a few days I celebrate a very special anniversary of my successful kidney transplant from 1987.

Be an Organ Donor! and this explains why.🙂

I know I am going to try harder not to settle – I’m not sure how well I will make some changes, but I have to try harder, because I want to have a life with as few regrets as possible.

Thank you for reading, please feel to share, and provide your ideas and feedback.

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How are your questions?

This blog is a reblog. I liked it because it is real. Most of us find ourselves in situations where the only thing we control is our attitude.

Best tip, when crap happens, and for most of us it’s not infrequently, CYA. Change Your Attitude. Do it selfishly because you will feel better and others will be happier around you.

Thank you Justin!

Free Thoughts of a Scattered Brain

Three months ago my boss came to me and told me that I had to work out of town for a month. I would only be about an hour away, so I could commute if I wanted to.

This was a minor annoyance, but no big deal. I could still sleep in my own bed and go on with my normal routine without too much interruption.

That changed two weeks ago. Due to budget cuts, I wouldn’t be working an hour away. Instead, I would have to drive two hours away to Jacksonville and work there for a month. No way was I commuting now.

When I found out I had to spend a month away from home, I was heated. I was the only person from my office who had to travel away from home this year. And this would be my second time doing it.

Last time I…

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