Friday, May 30, 2014

Our Accidental Garden

 A few years ago, Kelly and I went out to purchase some potted plants to grow fruits and vegetables on our patio. We failed!

After that we tried buying seeds and trying from scratch. Once again we failed. Too hot in Arizona we thought.

We decided that it was good thing that we didn't have to grow our own food, because we wouldn't last a week. We managed to grow 3 cherry tomatoes during our experiments and 2 got eaten by birds. Our other non-producing plants we're doing good and we wanted them to flourish, so we decided to compost our "store bought" fruit and veggie scraps. We'd use the compost to give our plants rich soil to grow in.

Funny thing happened. After we put the compost down, plants started to grow. And they kept growing. We couldn't figure out what they we're, so we just kept watering them. What grew you ask? We are the proud parents of several bell pepper plants (green, yellow and red), chilli pepper plants,  a huge tomato plant, the beginnings of some sort of squash plant and a few other plants we're still trying to figure out.

That's the story of our accidental garden. As long as you provide a rich environment of growth, magic will happen! We're now on the look out for a strawberry-watermelon plant.
 Here's a photo of our first pickings of the year.

Monday, May 19, 2014

"The Drop"

Several years ago, I got to watch a speaker named Marcus Engel speak at a college conference in Spokane, Washington. Rodger Campbell and I were speaking at the same conference. All of us were represented by the same agent at the time. Marcus was speaking on how to overcome difficult situations in life. His sense of humor was amazing. I really appreciated the jokes he mad at the expense of Rodger and myself. Marcus knew we were around based off the music he heard us playing.

Ooops, I forgot to mention...Marcus is Blind. After you spend time with him, you really forget that Marcus is blind, because Marcus is just Marcus. Marcus lost his vision when he was 18, when he and his friends were hit by a drunk driver. We struck up a friendship with Marcus and his wife Marvelyne. 

Over the years we've kept in touch via e-mail and Facebook. Marvelyne has given me book writing advice and helped edit Rodger's book.

Last month while speaking in Florida, Marcus and Marvelyne came out to visit with us. They even treated us to breakfast. THANK YOU! We got to meet their son and they got a chance to meet Kelly and Elijah. We had a lot of fun. While hanging out, we exchanged books. 

This past week, I finished reading Marcus's Book "Everyday Inspiration." I'm definitely inspired to do more in my life after reading it. 

Rodger and I with Marcus

If you would like to learn more about Marcus and his story, click on one of the links below:

Marcu's Engel Website
Marcus Engel Movie - "The Drop" Watch for Free!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


You probably saw my recent post about Instagram. This post is similar. Some of you know what Twitter is some of you don't. This post is for both of you. For those of you who don't know what Twitter is, it's a microblogging site that allows you to post your thoughts and ideas in 140 characters or less.

I like posting ideas, pictures and links to fun websites and stories on my Twitter page. Writing my blogs can take me some time, but tweeting only takes me a few seconds. If you're looking read a little more from me or just see what my thoughts of the day are, be sure to click HERE.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Change your Heart

I was at church this past Sunday (ok, I'm at church almost every Sunday). As the pastor as usual made some great points about life. This week he said something that really got me thinking, not only about myself but others too. Here's what he said:

"Jesus wants to change your heart not your circumstances."

Religious or not religious, almost everyone I know prays. They usually pray for a change of circumstance, situation or something. They pray when not so good things happen, but rarely pray when good things are happening. Many people just pray for stuff (house, money, care, health, etc) I normally pray for focus, energy, follow through and drive.

"Change your heart"....This is so true. We all watch reality TV and you see people with major problems in their, emotional, spiritual, relational, know what I'm talking about. They go to some specialist or guru to have their life or situation changed. The best results are seen by the people who change their heart or their way of thinking. Changing their heart changes their circumstances.

The people who only change their circumstances but don't change their heart more often than not end up back in the same circumstances. I watched a documentary called "Broke" last week. It's about professional athletes who made millions of dollars and end up broke after their career is over. The common story was the athletes financial circumstances changed over night, but their hearts and minds didn't. They're hearts really changed when the saw how much money they lost. Several former athletes were now mentoring younger athletes on how to better take care of their finances to prepare themselves for life after sports.

Many of us go through tough times in our lives. Trust me I've had my fair share. I prayed for things to change, but what I needed to pray for was for me to change. We have to look at the circumstances we're in. If it's a good circumstance, you have to be thankful of the situation and really appreciate where you are. Be sure to wake up every morning and say, "thank you" and "please keep my heart and my mind in the right place."

If you're circumstances aren't the way you like them, then you need to look in the mirror and ask yourself, what do I need to change about myself or the people, places or things I surround myself. Many times our circumstance change and we think everything will be good, then we get hit like a freight train when the not so good circumstance shows its ugly head again.

It's not about changing the circumstance, it's about changing our heart, our attitude and our actions. It's like the people on the weight loss surgery shows. They have this surgery that's supposed to change their lives. They have their surgery and loose lots of weight. A few years later the weight is back plus more. Why? They never addresses what was in their heart that caused the weight issue in the first place.

You see people who win the lottery then loose all the money only years later. Why? Their circumstance changed but not their hearts. They never addressed their spending or financial problems.

Why am I blogging about this? We are about 1/3 of the way through 2014. We started the year with big goals on how we we're going to make this "The Year." Now many of those goals aren't looking possible. We're getting down. We're starting to settle back into our old ways. Our circumstances aren't changing the way we dreamed they would or at the rate we wanted them too. Many of your goals are still possible. Your circumstances can change, but first you have to look yourself in the mirror and ask yourself..."Do I have it in my heart to change?" My faith has changed my heart. What will help you change your heart? Once your heart changes, your circumstances will change.

Have a GREAT week everyone!

Monday, May 12, 2014


A lot of people like it when I post pictures of my family and adventures. To be honest, I've been lazy with posting pictures lately because they're are some many places on the internet to post pictures. You have Facebook, Twitter, blogs, e-mail, sending text messages and Instagram.

Instagram is a fun site to post pictures and share them with the world. Many of you probably don't know that I have this page. Well, now you do! "I have a Instagram page." It's easy for me to post pictures from my phone for you to keep up with me and my amazing wife and son.

Don't believe me click HERE to see!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mother's Day

We're celebrating our 2nd Mother's Day this year! To my wife Kelly and my mom Edie, thank you for everything you do as mom's!

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Need some inspiration?


noun \ˌin(t)-spə-ˈrā-shən, -(ˌ)spi-\
: something that makes someone want to do something or that gives someone an idea about what to do or create : a force or influence that inspires someone

: a person, place, experience, etc., that makes someone want to do or create something

Many of us need the inspiration to live life and be positive during that not so good time. I have a friend from High School. She's been battling breast cancer and seeing her posts on Facebook and reading her blog will inspire you to be positive and not let life's challenges get you down. When you have time, click the link below to read her blog, you'll be inspired.

Ann's Blog 

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Eating Healthy

I was looking at a friends Facebook post recently and it said...

"Food is healthcare and Drugs are deathcare."

That comment really hit me. Over the last few years, Kelly and I have been learning more and more about what we put into our bodies. We really started to learn more when our son was born. We read what was good for him and what wasn't. We were amazed to learn how much is sold in stores that are terrible for you.

I remembered going to a golf tournament with my friend Scott. Smuckers was there handing out free samples of their peanut butter and jelly sandwiches call "Crustables." Wanting to be healthy I asked for their Peanut Butter and honey sandwich. Before I opened it, I read the ingredients. I was amazed to find no peanuts or honey listed in the ingredients. How is that possible?

We started reading articles and books. We watched every documentary we could on food and eating healthy. The consensus? The Standard American Diet (SAD) is really sad. Our foods are so processed and full of chemicals, we are killing ourselves every time we take a bite.

We started eating cleaner. We started cooking from scratch more. We now eat very little processed foods, we buy organic as much as possible and we've cut our meat consumption. Guess what, we feel a lot better. It was kind of crazy to think that we would eat foods that our son couldn't eat. As parents we want him to have a bright future. We learned that the foods we eat have a better effect on our health and how we feel compared to drugs and vitamins. If you eat right you'll feel right.

The problem is society has so programed us to buy whats convenient or cheap, we sacrifice our overall and long term well being. Food has become a profit item, so companies are cutting corners and producing crappy food full or products that are unhealthy or even disease causing. It's almost like the drug companies, medical world and food companies are working together. Eat crappy food and you need to see the doctor more and take more drugs. Which means they make more money. As I told Kelly, doctors and companies don't recommend that you eat better because they can't make any money off of healthy people. The worse you feel the more money companies and the government make. Remember, companies put lawmakers into office and the government is run on tax money. So they want you to spend more. Why do you think crappy foods cost so little? So you can buy more.  It's something how when our food quality got worse in the late 60's and early 70's the quality of our health got worse.

I read another comment from John Maxwell it said...

"In life you always pay, you either pay now or your pay later."

People make fun of us or question how we can spend so much money on organic and fresh foods. We here jokes about how empty our fridge is. But it's refreshing when the same people make comments about how much energy we have, how we look good for our age, how our son eats his fruits and veggies etc. Why do we do this, we would rather pay to eat good quality food now then to be drugged up and in hospitals as we getter older.  So, we're paying now to have a brighter future.

Why am I blogging about this? I want people and my readers to open their eyes and take more control of what they put into their bodies. You may think that the places selling you food and drinks care about you, but many don't. You wouldn't eat poison knowledgeably, so pay more attention to how they take care of their possessions than they take care of their body.

There is scientific proof that almost every major health problem can be prevented just by watching what we eat. I think it's funny that the people making many of the popular food and beverage items in this country won't eat it themselves or are fighting states like California and Vermont to prevent them from labeling what is really in the ingredients.

As my one friend says...

"We take better care of the items we have temporarily than the one item we have our entire life...our body/health."

Take care of yourself mind, BODY and soul!

Sunday, May 04, 2014

What is success?

I've recently been talking with people about achieving their dreams, being happy, being successful and not feeling like a looser. The sad thing is, our society, culture and media seemed more focused on making people feel worse about themselves than feeling good about themselves. We find more ways to tear someone down, than to build someone up.

I recently made a post on twitter where I stated the following:

"Success is the achievement of a dream or dreams...not the dreams of someone else, your dreams."

It's a simple statement but true. Success isn't about how much money you make, what type of car you have or what type of house you live in. It's about you doing what you say. It's about you putting a plan with your dream to make it a goal. It's about you following your plan to make your dream a reality. The your dream.

Right now, we have people, magazines, television, shows, movies, the internet, etc. telling us what success is. There all lies. All there trying to do is sell you something. Making you feel worse about yourself because you don't have what you see.

True success means we open our eyes to see the stories of the person who learns how to read, the child who learns how to take his or her first steps, a student walking the stage at graduation, finishing a project you've always talked about, solving a level on a video game, helping someone achieve their dream and making a positive impact on your community.

It's easy to focus on all the negative in life. It's easy for negative comments from people to bring us down, but to be happy, we need to remember on the successes we've already had in life and focus on the next success we plan to have. Not the success others are telling us we need to have.  No you need to focus on the dreams and passions you want to come true. The dreams and passions you want to live. That is success!