Inspiration

Good morning streakers!

I hope your day starts out as good as mine did. I kept my streak alive and that makes a big difference in my day. It’s a warm summer day here in Arizona.

Inspiration

Today, I want to talk about inspiration. One of the definitions of inspiration is to influence or impel an action. For a long time in my life, I never paid much attention to others and certainly did not choose others as a role model, regardless of their standing in society or effects on history. I have no idea why this was but lately, I’ve looked to others for inspiration and allowed their actions to impel me to do things I wouldn’t otherwise do, like write a blog.

The inspiration for this blog specifically comes from Chri Guillebeau, author of The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future and Side Hustle: From Idea to Income in 27 Days. (I recommend them both.). I listen to Chris’s podcast called SideHustle School on a regular basis and I appreciate the positive reinforcement and constructive advice he gives on his show. Listening to this podcast and reading his books help me stay motivated to step outside my comfort zone. I have starteda sidehustle yet, at least not one that makes much money but I apply the principles to other areas of my life.

The idea of consitently doing something on a regular basis helps me with learning the guitar. The idea that I can reach for the stars helped me write songs for a play, others sang these songs, on stage, in front of paid customers just this weekend! That is amazing to me. Nothing short of a miracle to me.

For me, life gets better when I keep a positive outlook on life and it gets worse when I dwell in the negativity and sit on my pity pot.

Thank you for reading this and I hope you found something useful here today.

Happy streaking!

Ken

And The Sea Will Tell

pexels-photo-248797.jpegHello and my apologies for not being more disciplined in posting.  Sometimes, my brain is my own worst enemy.  🙂

When I visited my mother over Thanksgiving, she loaned me And the Sea Will Tell I put off starting the book until a few days ago because I had to finish up a book I already started. (One of my resolutions this year is to read one book at a time, Side Hustle: From Idea to Income in 27 Days being the one exception, as it’s a workbook vice a book for entertainment and distraction. Rationalization is a wonderful tool. 🙂 )

Anyway, back to And the Sea Will Tell I picked it up and started reading it the other day and I loved it. Bugliosi grabbed my attention right away and I struggle to put the book down at night. It’s probably bad form to write a review or recommend a book even before I finish it but I couldn’t wait. (I have impulse control problems.)

Bugliosi tells the story of a tropical island paradise that turns sour for two couples, each sailed to the deserted – not dessert – island in hopes of being alone for up to a year. Unfortunately for Buck and Jennifer, and even more unfortunately for Mac and Muff, the island turned out to be like Grand Central Station for open-water sailors looking for solitude.  I recommend this book to any and all readers but especially those who love a good story well told.

Reading the book also made me yearn for my days when I sailed the high seas, well not exactly high seas but I learned to sail many years ago while stationed in Japan. I, an Airman, took an American Red Cross course on sailing from two Army Colonels and we sailed in the Tokyo harbor from the docks of a US Navy base. Talk about Joint Operations! I still have my copy of Start Sailing Right!: The National Standard for Quality Sailing Instruction (US Sailing Small Boat Certification) and refer to it often when this landlubber gets wispy for the salt air. I recommend this book and the course if you’re interested in learning to sail the high seas or just want to get your deck shoes wet.

Avast ye mateys. It’s time to weigh anchor and set sail for further adventures or at least to read a few more chapters. Enjoy the day!

p.s. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. 

Dreams Do Come True

L’O! Saturnalia, merry Christmas, and happy holidays!

Well, this past week or so has kept me busier than a one-legged man in a butt-kicking contest but in general, that is a good thing for me.

Probably one of the most satisfying things that happened over the weekend while visiting my son, my daughter-in-law, and my grand kids. Visiting them was special in and of itself, of course, but this weekend we pre-celebrated Christmas because I am traveling to Denver over the Christmas weekend to visit my daughter and my son-in-law.

While visiting with my son and his family, we did the usual things: exchange gifts (for my oldest granddaughter I bought The Teen’s Vegetarian Cookbook, for my middle granddaughter I got Fake Out!: Animals That Play Tricks (Penguin Young Readers, Level 3) and Young Cam Jansen and the Lost Tooth (Penguin Young Readers, L3), and the youngest loves pirates so I got him Maisy’s Pirate Ship: A Pop-up-and-Play Book, played board games like – Uno Card Game, Sequence Game, and Doc McStuffins Matching Game. That was a blast but what truly made the day special was singing Christmas carols with them.

If you read my previous blogs, you know I struggled my whole life trying to learn guitar. One of my motivations to learn guitar was to sing Christmas carols with my family and friends during the holidays. I always loved singing carols and other songs but without musical accompaniment, the other singers and myself would quickly slide out of tune or forget the words, and well, let’s just say things just didn’t turn out the way we planned. Then, I finally started to get serious and I learned a few things about having fun: I learned to accept progress not perfection which lets me relax and enjoy myself; I learned that copying exactly what is written isn’t all that necessary to have fun – in fact, it often detracts from the fun; I learned that I was the biggest obstacle to my learning new things.

Well, practicing patience and persistence, I eventually learned how to play several Christmas carols well enough to keep us in tune. My oldest granddaughter sang along while the two younger ones kept rhythm by clapping their hands and tapping on the box of the Hola! Music HM-21BK Soprano Ukulele Bundle with Canvas Tote Bag, Strap and Picks, Color Series – Black I bought her a few years ago. I had so much fun and I know my son and daughter-in-law did too because they came and sat down on the couch and joined in the singing.

I used The Best Christmas Songs Ever (Best Ever) to learn these classic carols and, of course, Jane was by my side. I couldn’t have done it without her. Just to add a shameless plug for Dave Navarro and Epiphone, Jane is a Epiphone Dave Navarro Signature “Jane” Acoustic/Electric Cutaway Guitar.20171220_032829796_iOS

p.s. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.”

There is no try

Greetings and salutations!

I hope all is well in your world.  Today, I’d like to review Hal Leonard Guitar Method Book 1:  Book/CD Pack, a book that really helped me learn how to play guitar.  I suppose some background is in order.

For years, I sang in choirs and in my younger years, I played the trombone and the sousaphone in school bands but I always wanted to learn guitar.  Through the years, I purchased at least four guitars, which ended up collecting dust and taking up space.  Each time I “tried” to learn, I would get frustrated at my apparent lack of progress and would simply put off practicing for another day.  Well, as you can imagine, I did not learn how to play guitar.  Then a little more than four years ago, I decided I would take Star Wars Legendary Jedi Master Yoda (Discontinued by manufacturer) advice: “there is no try; there is only do or do not.”

So I ordered Hal Leonard Guitar Method Book 1:  Book/CD Pack through amazon.com and started to practice patience and persistence on my Johnson JG-100-B Student Acoustic Guitar, Black, which was collecting dust and taking up space.  I began to appreciate progress not perfection.  Each day, I told myself “I am better today than I was yesterday”.   Eventually, I learned some of the songs in the book.  In a fit of confidence, I bought The Best of John Denver: Easy Guitar and started to learn his songs.  I was very good but each day I got a little better and I practiced patience and persistence.

Unfortunately, I did not take very good care of my Johnson JG-100-B Student Acoustic Guitar, Black, I live in a dry climate and I should have created a more humid environment for it but I didn’t.

Enter Jane, my Epiphone Dave Navarro Signature  “Jane” Acoustic/Electric  Cutaway Guitar.  I bought her and we began an incredible journey.  I started to gain more confidence and began to enjoy playing.  Eventually, I began to play and sing in front of other people!  I became nervous and jittery but I did it and it was fun.  Best of all, people said they like it.

Back to Hal Leonard Guitar Method Book 1:  Book/CD Pack.  This book will take you through basic yet common chords and rhythms and also teach some finger picking and lead guitar parts.  It includes various styles like folk, country, rock, and blues.  I recommend it as a starter book for any beginner.  It helped me start playing other people’s songs and with time, I began to write my own songs.  Here’s a link to the very first song I ever wrote: https://youtu.be/KBWH_2itxkw  I hope you enjoy it.

The pictures above are of Jane and my John Denver song book.  I loaned my Hal Leonard book to my son.  He has a guitar that takes up space and collects dust.  🙂

That’s all for now; enjoy your day!

P.s. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.”