Archive for November, 2011

“ANOTHER THANKSGIVING ADVENTURE”

November 29, 2011

Last Thanksgiving I wrote about the adventure Pam and I had in Austin at Hudson’s on the Bend.  This restaurant had a special Thanksgiving menu and their specialty is wild game.  Great time!

For this year’s adventure I did a little advance planning and presented my idea of a Thanksgiving adventure to Pam and Lyndsey.  With no hesitation…they were both in!!

We did our traveling on Thanksgiving Day and met Lyndsey at our destination.  Thanksgiving day was celebrated on Friday.  Thursday, upon arrival, I checked to see if I could locate the TV channel for the Longhorn vs Aggie game.  It was not carried, so I listened on the website and used my imagination.  I recorded the game at home so I would be able to witness the end of a long-time rivalry.

Sea Haven 

Front Deck Overlooking Beach

View of the Gulf

 Sunset – Thanksgiving Day

Sunset – Thanksgiving Day

 Pam & Lyndsey – Viewing Beach

Jerry & Lyndsey – Viewing Beach

Sunrise – Friday Morning

We had a great family adventure during our Thanksgiving weekend.  I took many pictures, especially of the food.  This was our most unusual Thanksgiving Day with travel on Thursday and giving thanks on Friday.  I’ve wanted to go to the beach in the winter for years.  There weren’t a lot of people so it was just a great time to relax and do family.

The Longhorns won the game and that was great.

I will include other pictures of our adventure on a later post.

We all agreed it was the best Thanksgiving Day we had ever had.  It will be hard for me to dream up an adventure for next year.  Maybe I should begin today.

The greatest part of the holiday was the presence of God in all we saw and did.

“A PROJECT WITHIN A PROJECT”

November 22, 2011

Lyndsey’s Sleigh Bed project is coming along pretty well.  The plans call for 1-1/4″ wood.  This would require a special order to get all the necessary materials.  I decided to use regular lumber (Poplar) which is 3/4″ thick.  I have never understood why lumber that is 1″ thick is only 3/4″ thick and lumber that is 6″ wide is only 5-1/2″ wide.  It really doesn’t matter, because “it is what it is.”  I only purchase the lumber I need for each step of the project.  That helps with trying to store all the lumber in my shop.  So, by using 3/4″ lumber, it has been necessary to glue two boards together for each part.  This makes the thickness of each piece 1-1/2″ and really makes for a sturdy bed.  In the middle of the project I realized that I was really sawing two pieces for each piece…I am making TWO beds that will only be ONE.

Lyndsey has asked me to take pictures of the entire process.  I guess she plans to make a documentary of my efforts and sometimes frustrations.  There are about 80 pieces to the bed and it calls for really precision measuring, sawing, router work, etc.  This is only important if you want the bed to be square and level with all legs planted firmly on the  floor.

While all the different stages of construction are in progress, I get an e-mail from Lyndsey.  She plans on making a “Charlie Brown Christmas Tree” and wanted a stand.  She usually sends me a picture of something and says, “Daddy, can you make this?”  My answer is always “yes.”  I may not know how, but I am a problem solver and believe I can figure it out.  The “figuring” is the most exciting part…almost!  The real excitement for a request from Pam and/or Lyndsey is being able to do a project for them.

So, this request is not something to be delayed until the new year.  It’s a Christmas thing.  I have many, many scraps from the bed project, so the materials are no problem.

So, this is my solution.  I thought it would be nice to make a stand that could be easily stored, so I used PVC with a set-screw to stabilize the “tree.”  The PVC is also connects the to legs on the stand.  The stand can be taken apart by removing the PVC or just folded up as show in the picture.  So this small project came in the middle of the much larger project.

Are you interruptible for someone else’s needs?  We are fortunate that there is One who is always interruptible for our needs.  I guess the real word is “available” for our needs.  We have a God who is omnipresent and is a real multi-tasker.  Jesus sits at the right hand of God and intercedes continuously for our cares and needs.  As a husband and father, I always try to be interruptible for the needs of Pam and Lyndsey.  Sometimes I am not aware of the cares or needs and need to be prompted by them.  God is always aware of our needs and is just waiting for us to speak to Him.  He wants a part of everything we do and the circumstances in which we find ourselves.  It is not an interruption to Him.  He is just always there for us and available at all times.  Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks for our blessings.  It is a special time to give thanks but is a reminder to give thanks daily for these blessings.

Pam, Lyndsey, and I have a very special Thanksgiving holiday planned and I know we will be blessed by being together.  I wish a very special Thanksgiving Season for each of you who read this post.

So, be blessed of God and “Hook-em Horns” on the annual Thanksgiving Day Game!!!

“DON’T SIT ON TOP OF THE WALL”

November 18, 2011

As many of you know, I am an avid baseball fan…Longhorn and local highschool.  I remember a sign at the highschool baseball field that is attached to the new brick wall on the first and third base sidelines.  It reads, “DON’T SIT ON TOP OF THE WALL.”  It’s been there for quite a while, but suddenly it struck me as a little amusing.  I understand why it’s dangerous to sit on top of the wall.  What was funny is that I have never tried to sit on the SIDE of a wall.  It may be possible for some, but it’s impossible for me.

Earlier in the week I was at a local barbecue restaurant and they had a sign advertising 2 lbs of barbecue that stated you could make 8 quarter pound sandwiches.  Well, I know that 8 x 1/4 lbs = 2 lbs, but maybe it must be explained to someone else.

I was living in Port Arthur years ago and we experienced high water during a hurricane.  There was a drive along the seawall that was under water.  The street is a one-way street and there was a sign that read “ONE WAY DO NOT ENTER.”  The water was so high it was level with the bottom of the sign.  My brother took a picture of the sign.  I am sure nobody tried to drive this route with water up to the car windows.  But, I am not sure.  I have seen cars stranded under overpasses that had signs on the bridge that read “CLEARANCE 16 FEET.”  The water under the overpass was only 2 or 3 feet below the bridge span…DUH!

When I lived in Port Arthur, there was a real good barbecue restaurant in Bridge City.  There was a sign posted that gave the price of barbecue with sauce and without barbecue sauce.  The price was higher per pound without the sauce.  This seemed a little odd to me so I checked into it further.  Barbecue sauce has weight so you get less meat.  The owner had discovered that more barbecue was sold without sauce so he raised the price for an order of meat only.  It’s called retail pricing for achieve maximum profits.

Below are some unusual signs that you might find amusing:

I hope you enjoyed the signs.  Everyone needs something to laugh about each day.  Especially in the current trying times.

The signs we observe in the world today are often funny and/or weird.  Many of them are rules and regulations to be obeyed in order to not get in trouble with the law.  With God, it’s a little different.  Well, maybe not a little different, but a lot different.  God’s Word gives us commands.  There is little room for doubt with these commands.  They are given to us that me might find and remain in a relationship with Him.  There is very little to not understand.  The reason for this is that is God’s Truth.  Disobedience to His commands is much worse than violating the traffic laws and other laws of the land.  We are blessed when we keep His commandments.  We are not always successful, but because of God’s Grace we are forgiven and can continue in our relationship with Him.

“PROCRASTINATION”

November 1, 2011

In psychology, procrastination refers to the act of replacing high-priority actions with tasks of low-priority, and thus putting off important tasks to a later time. Some psychologists cite such behavior as a mechanism for coping with the anxiety associated with starting or completing any task or decision.

Procrastination may result in stress, a sense of guilt and crisis, severe loss of personal productivity, as well as social disapproval for not meeting responsibilities or commitments. These feelings combined may promote further procrastination. While it is regarded as normal for people to procrastinate to some degree, it becomes a problem when it impedes normal functioning.

Perfectionism

Traditionally, procrastination has been associated with perfectionism, a tendency to negatively evaluate outcomes and one’s own performance, intense fear and avoidance of evaluation of one’s abilities by others, heightened social self-consciousness and anxiety, recurrent low mood, and “workaholism”.

My brother-in-law is having a cardioversion procedure performed this morning.  I bring this up not to say he is a procastinator, but just to make a point.  There are many times when we are faced with a decision and we are unsure of the results.  We think what if it doesn’t work.  Well, what if it does work.  One thought is negative and the other positive.

I am working on one of the most complicated woodworking projects I have ever attempted.  This time I have plans rather than looking at a picture from a catalogue and drawing my own plans.  When people have brought me pictures and asked if I could build this…I always say, “sure.”  When I received the plans for my current project, I looked them over and saw how complicated the detail work would be.  It was going to be a challenge, but when Lyndsey asked if I could build this Queen Size Sleigh Bed, I said sure.  I could have just thrown up my hands and said I could never get all the 80 pieces to fit, but I believe it is the challenge that drives me.  Until I bought the first materials and made the first cut, there would never be the possibility to find out if I could finish it or not.  It’s just like walking.  You can’t walk until you take the first step.  That leads to the next step and then the next step.  That’s where I am now.  I am patiently taking one step at a time and I KNOW that I can complete the job.

I run into procastinators daily in my financial planning profession.  I visit with people who have lost a large portion of their retirement funds in the stock market.  When I suggest an alternative, they say, “but what if the market goes up?”  Well, what if it stays where it is or goes down?  I am conservative so I like to remove as much risk as possible when dealing with investments.  Many people believe the greater the risk, the greater the rewards…really!!!  Maybe so, may not.

A couple of months ago I had a thought on a new family adventure for Thanksgiving.  I could have thought Pam and Lyndsey would never want to go on this type of adventure, but rather than procrastinate, I told them my plans.  Not only acceptance by both…extreme excitement.  I could have procrastinated about finding the right place to stay and worry about it being the perfect place.  But, I searched and found the perfect place…two months early.  The excitement is really beginning to build in anticipation for our Thanksgiving adventure.  We all like adventures and try to make each time we get together an adventure.

One area we need never procrastinate about is God’s faithfulness.  When God says it will happen…it will happen.  When He says He will…He will.  We can stand firm in our faith on that.  Years ago when God said He will save me, it was no time to procrastinate and say, “well, what if He doesn’t.”  Well, what if He does.  Now that is really exciting.  Just like in the stock market…it’s a matter of risk.  There is no risk greater than being saved by our Lord and Savior.  There are many things I may doubt, but there is no doubt in His promise.