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Showing posts from September, 2017

Oh, the places you'll go.

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I often encourage my older daughter to clear out toys that we can donate. It's something I like doing to promote detachment, lack of clutter (minimalism is a lifestyle I enjoy), and because there is simply no reason to keep so many thing. Or, as my daughter said today, "There's too much to clean!" I agree. She got a bag and filled it on her own. When my youngest is a bit older, she'll learn the same lesson from me and her big sister.

There are some things that I attach memories to and would like to keep. One, in particular, was a stuffed animal that my daugthers' father gave me once and I thought it would be cute to pass it on. I did pass it on and it was played with briefly. However, my (then) 3 year old put an end to its life with us when she donated it during a Christmas donation. LOL Fine by me, I guess.

The one that has made the cut - and I hope continues to - is a bear I have had since my early 20s. The bear fit easily in my hand and became a traveling…

Hemingway Cats - More to Love

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Keeping with the tradition of shameless promotion when we foster cats from the Humane Society, I would like to introduce you to two Hemingway Cats named Chelsea and Koa.

I can't explain why someone gives up a cat after having it for years. Giving it up runs the risk that the shelter may have to put it down - it's a sad reality but ... a reality. But those who don't have other options or simply wish to no longer keep their fur friends, they end up at the Humane Society in Fort Pierce and make their way into a foster home - like mine.

And so I ended up with two cats from the same home who were surrendered by their owner. Chelsea and Koa are among the softest cats I've ever touched. Their fur is so soft! Chelsea is the cream colored cat (part Siamese I was told) and has SEVEN toes per front foot. Yes, seven!!! It's like she wears mittens when you look at her. It's so cute!

Then there is Koa. He is a solid gray (like a Russian Blue, perhaps?) and has six toes per …

Women on the Water - A Paddle Boarding Design

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If you haven't tried paddle boarding, I suggest giving it a go. I was lucky enough to try it out with my friend Susie who works in Jupiter, Florida, at (I believe) the only paddle boarding rental shop in the town. Yes, the town name is Jupiter. Seriously, I know you are thinking Florida is damn weird. Trust me, most of us agree! My friend Susie hooked me up with a board perfect for my beginner status and took me to a cool spot nearby the shop.

I saw my first large sea turtle swimming under me. (Why didn't I have my camera with me?!) The water was crystal clear and, I didn't even fall off although she did explain how to fall off. Go for the fall. Trying to stay on means you sometimes hurt yourself landing on the board instead of the water, she said. I appreciated the tips.

Anyway, I often design art inspired by my daughters, social issues, and friends. The design I made about the paddle boarder is inspired by my friend Susie. If you don't follow her on Instagram (you s…

Evacuating for Hurricane Irma

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Living in Florida is wonderful like 67% of the time. The perks are that it's beautiful year round - blossoming happy plants, outdoor fun, beaches are wonderful, no snow to shovel ... and you don't have to own an extensive wardrobe. It's warm, warmer, and hot. So basically, you can survive with a single-season style wardrobe. That's awesome! The negative things are that it's too damn hot most of the year (sweating sucks and hot cars suck) and then there's that whole hurricane thing ...

Here's the positive aspect about living in a state that deals with yearly hurricanes ... our homes and building codes are pretty solid. Hurricanes (like Cat 4 and under) usually don't decimate our homes and buildings. Storm surge is a different story ... but homes here are built with CBS (construction block and not wood -- for the most part, at least). And, because Florida deals often with storms, the response to them from the state and cities are fairly good. Most of us…

Special Forces v Conventional Forces & Failed Leadership

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I'm going to move some of my closed blog from my time in the Army to this blog and add details about things I wrote and posted about previously. The article I wrote (below) was well received by the Special Forces (SOF) community, of course, but from my chain of command (all the way to the top), I was told to not write it because it wasn't worth it.

The article is about a Special Forces Soldier who survived injuries in Afghanistan that, if he were any less trained, would have taken his life. What I admire most about Special Forces (Army, Navy, etc.) is their commitment to training and adapting to situations. You may think that Soldiers who are younger are in the best shape but often it's older Soldiers who have years of mental and physical training under their belt which makes them the greatest asset.

I'm not saying that years in the military doing rigorous training is easy on the body. But, these guys are warriors through and through. This dude epitomizes warrior ethos…