November 23, 2017

Give Thanks!

"I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old & the new." — Ralph Waldo Emerson

"We would worry less if we praised more. Thanksgiving is the enemy of discontent & dissatisfaction." ― Harry A. Ironside

Thanksgiving Day
November 23, 2017


I thank YOU for making me & then saving me.

I thank YOU for Saint Cloud, Minnesota.

I thank YOU for the crystal clear lakes of Minnesota.

I thank YOU for the grace & mercy that YOU continuously shower upon me.

I thank YOU for my biological father giving me life.

I thank YOU for my biological mother making the choice of putting me up for adoption rather than having an abortion.

I thank YOU for the family that YOU placed me in.

I thank YOU for my Mom & Dad.

I thank YOU that they cared enough about me to teach me about YOU.

I thank YOU for adopting me as YOUR son.

I thank YOU for New Richmond, Wisconsin.

I thank YOU for my sisters.

I thank YOU for my nephews.

I thank YOU for my nieces.

I thank YOU for the many people who taught me the BIBLE & how they helped to prepare me to live in a way that is pleasing to YOU.

I thank YOU for Saint Louis, Missouri.

I thank YOU for "Go For It!" 

I thank YOU for "Fun in the SON!"

I thank YOU for "Possum Trips."

I thank YOU for countless delicious visits to Rossino's.

I thank YOU for the honor of being a STL Cardinals baseball fan.

I thank YOU for the STL Blues.

I thank YOU for Creve Coeur Park.

I thank YOU for all my friends in the USA & throughout the world.

I thank YOU for allowing me to be a Parkway North Viking.

I thank YOU for Cancún, México & the Yucatan Peninsula.

I thank YOU for allowing me to be a Western Illinois Fighting Leatherneck.

I thank YOU for allowing me to be a Meramec Warrior.

I thank YOU for protecting me during the years of drifting away from YOU.

I thank YOU for Santo Tomás, El Salvador.

I thank YOU for allowing me to be a Covenant Scot.

I thank YOU for Cristiana, Jamaica.

I thank YOU for Nashville, Tennessee.

I thank YOU for the trials & bad experiences that have built my faith & trust in YOU.

I thank YOU for Miami, Florida.

I thank YOU for allowing me to coach & work & be a Miami High Stingaree.

I thank YOU for the privilege of being part of "The []_[]" family.

I thank YOU for continually filling me with faith, hope, joy, love, & peace in the midst of unbearable daily pain that YOU somehow convert into a desire within me to encourage others.

I thank YOU for "Garcia's Seafood."

I thank YOU for "Palacio de los Jugos."

I thank YOU for Prospect Heights, Illinois.

I thank YOU for His Mansion Midwest.

I thank YOU for the amazing brothers & sisters in CHRIST that YOU have brought into my life.

I thank YOU for Defiance, Missouri.

I thank YOU for the "Parson's House Bed & Breakfast."

I thank YOU for Sugar Creek Winery.

thank YOU for Upland, Indiana.

I thank YOU for Wandering Wheels.

I thank YOU for International Teams.

I thank YOU for San Francisco de Dos Ríos, Costa Rica.

I thank YOU for the "Instituto de Lengua Española."

I thank YOU for Gallo Pinto.

I thank YOU for Alajuela, Costa Rica.

I thank YOU for "Fuerza Génesis."

I thank YOU for Liga Deportiva Alajuelense.

I thank YOU for Medellín, Colombia.

I thank YOU for creating the perfect wife for me.

I thank YOU for Atlético Nacional.

I thank YOU loving me every day through my wife.

I thank YOU for O'Fallon, Missouri.

I thank YOU for allowing me to live in Homestead, Florida with a typical day including seeing an alligator a few yards from my patio which prompted me to glide across Lake Wolfe in my kayak at night while a sliver of the moon was illuminating the water with several shades of silver & I was awestruck that something so simple exuded such an intense beauty & peace.

I thank YOU for the uniqueness of the Florida Everglades.

I thank YOU for Mango Shakes at "Robert Is Here Fruit Stand."

I thank YOU for "Schnebly's Tropical Winery."

I thank YOU for "Top Taste Jamaican Restaurant."

I thank YOU for the stunning beauty of the Florida Keys.

I thank YOU for Key West, Florida.

I thank YOU for "B.O.'s Fish Wagon."

I thank YOU for "Garbo's Grill."

I thank YOU for the "Stoned Crab at Ibis Bay."

thank YOU for Stock Island, Florida.

I thank YOU for "Hogfish Bar & Grill."

I thank YOU for Oro Valley, Arizona.

I thank YOU for "The Flavor of India."

I thank YOU for Catalina State Park.

I thank YOU for Tucson, Arizona.

I thank YOU for the "Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum."

I thank YOU for "eegee's"

I thank YOU for Sabino Canyon.

I thank YOU for the peacefulness of a babbling brook.

Most of all, I thank YOU for YOUR unconditional love.

YOUR son,


"Not what we say about our blessings but how we use them is the true measure of our thanksgiving." — W.T. Purkiser

"Eucharisteo—thanksgiving—always precedes the miracle." ― Ann Voskamp

"Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, & change ordinary opportunities into blessings." ― William Arthur Ward

"I am grateful for what I am & have. My thanksgiving is perpetual. O how I laugh when I think of my vague indefinite riches. No run on my bank can drain it, for my wealth is not possession but enjoyment." ― Henry David Thoreau

"GOD smiles when we praise & thank HIM continually. Few things feel better than receiving heartfelt praise & appreciation from someone else. GOD loves it, too. An amazing thing happens when we offer praise & thanksgiving to GOD. When we give GOD enjoyment, our own hearts are filled with joy." ― William Law

"Thanksgiving is inseparable from true prayer; it is almost essentially connected with it. One who always prays is ever giving praise, whether in ease or pain, both for prosperity & for the greatest adversity. He blesses GOD for all things, looks on them as coming from HIM, & receives them for HIS sake―not choosing nor refusing, liking or disliking, anything but only as it is agreeable or disagreeable to HIS perfect will." ― John Wesley

June 21, 2017

Only in MIAMI!

It's different down here

You sense it the moment you arrive

The sand

The surf

The lights

The energy

From sunrise 

To sunset

There's a rhythm to this place

Miami isn't just a place you live

It isn't just a place you study & work

It's a place you feel

And our student athletes, coaches, & fans

Get to experience it each & every day

Only at the []_[]


Only in Miami

The []_[] exists "Only in Miami" & in those who understand, "It's a CANES thing & you wouldn't understand!"

If that doesn't make sense to you, then you either hate the []_[] &/or you're ignorant of that which those who yell at the top of our lungs, "It's great to be a MIAMI HURRICANE!" believe deep down inside of us!

There are many important things in life but to be blessed in believing that, "It's all about the []_[]!" makes life more exciting & more enjoyable.

Several years ago, the []_[] made an award winning video that captures part of why almost half of my wardrobe is []_[] apparel.

"The []_[]!" by Billy Corben in 2009 was a hit on ESPN's 30 for 30 & its popularity demanded "The []_[] Part 2" & what's brewing in Coral Gables as I type is the "Carol Soffer Football Indoor Practice Facility" that will enable our MIAMI HURRICANES to practice even in extreme heat or storms with lightning.

Our coach tried to be a quarterback but was unfortunately at the []_[] the same time as NFL[]_[] Greats Jim Kelly, Bernie Kosar, & Vinnie Testaverde!

The []_[] is a big part of my life as I try to contribute to a Facebook Page of a dear friend that's name was changed today to "Miami Hurricanes Tr[]_[]e Fans!" so check it out if this blog has peaked your interest but if not, know this, the []_[] will once again be the talk of not only the sports world but the entire world because that's what Sebastian the Ibis seems to be telling me & everyone else that used to be at the Orange Bowl & now we're at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens!

You tell 'em Sebastian!

Since almost every sport team stole the []_[]'s smoke filled entrance, the []_[] student's thought why not us!

Sebastian even cranked dat Soulja Boy but improved it greatly by throwing up the []_[]!

I'm so ready for kickoff so Let's Go CANES!

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June 18, 2017

I love that you're my father!

Could there be any better memories that a son has of his father than spending time fishing together?

I am thankful for all our vacations when you woke me up a few hours before sunrise & we glided across a moonlit lake in our kayak enjoying the peaceful serenity before we hopefully caught breakfast in the form of Lake Trout, Large Mouth Bass, Northern Pike, or Walleye.

When I reflect on how much I enjoy the beauty of creation, I understand that a large portion of why I am like that is because of who you are & what you shared with me.

"The heart of a father is the masterpiece of nature."  Antoine François Prévost d'Exiles

I also got to experience places like Isle Royale National Park in Lake Superior that many Americans don’t even know exist.

That included . . .

. . . the playfulness exhibited in a den of red foxes underneath our cabin or . . .

. . . seeing a moose swimming or . . .

. . . when we weren’t enjoying the melodic signing of a loon, we stealthily approached a nesting loon in our kayak & marveled at the intricate perfect design of the different colors & patterns.

There is only one perfect father, our Heavenly FATHER. In spite of not having a father as you were growing up, you are the perfect father for me & I would not want anyone else to be my Dad!

"Any man can be a Father but it takes someone special to be a dad." — Anne Geddes

The City Beautiful of New Richmond, Wisconsin is where we lived during my early childhood. Not bad to have a river running through our back yard in which we traveled on our pontoon boat to the dock at the local Dairy Queen to enjoy your favorite food in the world…ice cream!

I remember many times after dinner when you had already put in a hard day’s work, that you would go prepare the outdoor ice rink so that myself & many others could play ice hockey under the stars!


"Father taught us that opportunity and responsibility go hand in hand. I think we all act on that principle; on the basic human impulse that makes a man want to make the best of what's in him and what's been given him." — Laurence Rockefeller

The official ball of the FIFA 2010 World Cup in South Africa reminds me that when we moved to St. Louis, I tearfully accepted that we couldn’t afford for me to play hockey anymore. You believed that I would be successful in whichever sport I played, so you nudged me towards soccer.

"My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person, he believed in me." —Jim Valvano

Little did you or Mom know that a decision when I was in grade school to play soccer instead of hockey would lead to an Athletic Scholarship to play soccer as a Western Illinois Fighting Leatherneck.

"The most important thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother." — Henry Ward Beecher

Because of the love you have for Mom, it was absolutely hilarious whenever you two had disagreements.


It just was & I guess that is because it was so far from your normal behavior.

"The greatest gifts my parents gave to me…were their unconditional love and a set of values." — Colin Powell

It really is no surprise that even though I am far from perfect, the love that you have for me & the values that you instilled in me are largely responsible for the fact that I enjoy helping & serving other people.

I just had to slip this photo in but I shall keep the meaning of this between you & me even though Michelle & Kirsten may understand but this quote is a hint for those out there who think y'all are a modern day Sherlock Holmes!

"Dads are most ordinary men turned by love into heroes, adventurers, story-tellers, & singers of song." — Pam Brown

Praise be to the GOD and FATHER of our LORD JESUS CHRIST, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in CHRIST.

For HE chose us in HIM before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in HIS sight.

In love HE predestined us to be adopted as HIS sons through JESUS CHRIST, in accordance with HIS pleasure and will — to the praise of HIS glorious grace, which HE has freely given us in the ONE HE loves. — EPHESIANS 1:3-6

Just as GOD the FATHER predestined all who know JESUS CHRIST as their LORD & SAVIOR, HE also knew all along that the best possible way for me to have a life full of blessings, was for you to be my father!

"The difference between a man & a father is that the former shares his genes, but latter gives his life."  Craig D. Lounsbrough

I love that you're my father!

That's more than the title of this blog as it's also the last line of a song that inspired me to write another blog so I guess you'd like to know what that song might be so here's the link which also has a couple of quotes from the singer himself along with a couple of photos of you & my father-in-law & my beautiful wife!

There is only one phrase that sums up all that I am trying to convey!

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