Friday, December 21, 2018

The Road to Success Poster

Here is where you can get your own copy of The Road to Success Poster:

The Road to Success Poster from an original drawing issued by the National Cash Register Co. to point the road to business success. It originally appeared in THE ETUDE music magazine, published October 1913 and includes some of the unique language and jargons of the time. Great inspirational and motivational tool/gift for anyone, especially young people starting out, new businesses and anyone seeking success (aren’t we all?)..  Just follow the ‘Road to Success,’ making sure not to fall prey to ‘bohemianism,’ shiftlessness’ or one of the many other pitfalls along the way. Don’t lose time at the ‘Hotel Know It All’ or ‘Mutual Admiration Society’ waiting for compliments such as ‘Caruso can’t touch you’ or ‘You’ll set the world on fire.’ Once you reach the ‘Gate of Ideals’ you’ve nearly reached the big zither of success.
An allegorical map of the road to success. A host of shortcomings and mistakes including "Bohemianism," "Misrepresentation", "Lack of Preparation", "Bad Business Methods", and "Weak Morals" lead to "Oblivion", and the "River of Failure". But those who adopt the "Right System", attain "True Knowledge", and pass through the "Gate of Ideals", the golden lyre of Success beckons.

This link will give you a printable explanation of the Road to Success poster that you can frame along with it. The Road to Success explanation PDF

The text is below:

The Road to Success

This prize is achieved by first entering the Gate of Opportunity. People are running through, but some have already settled in to the sit-down life of ease and comfort in what looks like the Beer Garden of Bohemianism.

Some manage to pass by those delights to check in to the Hotel Know It All, because they hold to mottoes such as Nobody can tell me, or I don’t need to practice, or I’m a born genius, or yet: I don’t need a system.

Similarly misguided cries are heard on the patio of the Mutual Admiration Society: You’re the Hit of the Age, You’ll Set the World on Fire, You’re a Wonder My Boy, or (my favorite): Caruso Can’t Touch You.

Those who avoid those three establishments of ill repute might still fall victim to the deep, dark well of Illiteracy, or the spinning, disorienting wheel of Conceit. A select few manage to board the train called Right System at the Railroad Station.

That doesn’t stop some from running along the rail track towards Success, only to succumb to the ugly hand of Vices, the spinning fan of Bad Habits (blowing its victims towards Oblivion), or the pitfall of Bad Reputation. Others fall prey to Charlatanism, or get tangled up in the webs of Jealousy and Do It Tomorrow.

Those who overcome all these perils will enter the gates of System. But while the train crosses a bridge across the river Failure, those on foot are threatened by the Cauldron of Misrepresentation, and tempted by Short Cuts.

Some do manage to wade across the river to the other side, but there must overcome Bad Temper, Carelessness, Shiftlessness and Bad Memory. Then there’s Lack of Preparation, a giant rock which the train can tunnel through effortlessly, while the surviving pedestrians must trek across it.

Sprees, Laziness and Bad Business Methods then still threaten them, until at last they come before two gates, the one for Weak Morals remaining forever closed, the Gate of Ideals open to the train (and some on foot).

Conclusion: you can be successful without adopting the Right System, but your chances are far smaller. And you’ll have to make a lot bigger effort to get there.

Saturday, December 8, 2018

The Bible, The Church, & Homosexuality

This is the best message I have heard on how Christians should think about and relate to homosexuals. The whole series is almost two hours long but it is well worth the time to listen.

It was given at Fellowship Denver Church on July 13, 2012. The title of the series is: Romans Forum: The Bible, The Church, & Homosexuality.

Here is what they said about it:

Homosexuality is one of the most difficult modern issues for churches that want to be faithful to Scripture and love people well. Whether it personally affects each of us or not, it is good to wrestle through this issue because it touches on many aspects of Scripture’s teaching and our understanding of the gospel. In other words, this issue tends to demonstrate how skillfully (or not!) we understand and live out Scripture as a unified whole.

Here is the link to the two messages in the series:

Romans Forum: The Bible, The Church, & Homosexuality

This is not the exact notes referred to in the message but follows it fairly close and gives the background.


Friday, November 30, 2018

Gratitude, Thanks, and Thanksgiving Gift Ideas

Gratitude gives us perspective. When we lack gratitude, life looks different. We live with a chip on our shoulder. Nothing is ever good enough. People are always letting us down. Circumstances are exaggerated out of proportion. We focus on the bad hand we were dealt. To be thankful we need to remember what God and other people have done for us. I have found that formalizing my gratitude does something that fleeting thoughts can't. It cements the thought in my mind and makes it stronger than the grumbling voice that is always droning on.

Many blessings are hidden. Choosing gratitude exposes them.

Click here for:

Click on the image below to select your choice of Gratitude or Thanksgiving gifts from Zazzle.

Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams Gift Ideas

Here are some gift ideas for you or someone you know likes The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams.

"What is REAL?" asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. "Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?"

"Real isn't how you are made," said the Skin Horse. "It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real."
"Does it hurt?" asked the Rabbit.

"Sometimes," said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. "When you are Real you don't mind being hurt."

"Does it happen all at once, like being wound up," he asked, "or bit by bit?"

"It doesn't happen all at once," said the Skin Horse. "You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand."

Click here for:
The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams Gifts on Amazon

Click on the image below to select your choice of gifts from Zazzle

Saturday, November 17, 2018

U.S. Army 75th Ranger Regiment Gifts

75th Ranger Regiment
Here are some gift ideas for members, family and friends of the U.S. Army 75th Ranger Regiment.

The 75th Ranger Regiment is the U.S. Army's premier raid force, with specialized skills that enable them to perform a variety of missions. These include direct action, airfield seizure, airborne and air assaults, special reconnaissance, personnel recovery, and high-value target raids. The 75th has been conducting extensive counterterrorism operations throughout the war on terror.

Click on the image to select your choice of Battalion. You can also select the gifts that include the Ranger School Tab.

75th Ranger Regiment
75th Ranger Regiment
by Philip Faustin

Click here for:
75th Ranger Regiment Gifts on Amazon

Rangers Lead the Way
  Further, Faster and Fight Harder

U.S. Army Ranger School Tab Gifts

Army Ranger School Tab
Here are some gift ideas for soldiers, family and friends of those who have earned the U.S. Army Ranger School Tab.

 Ranger School is the Army's toughest course and the premier small unit tactics and leadership school . . . a mentally and physically challenging school that develops functional skills directly related to units whose mission is to engage the enemy in close combat and direct fire battle. . . . [Upon completion] Ranger Students are proficient in leading squad and platoon dismounted operations around the clock in all climates and terrain. Rangers are better trained, more capable, more resilient, and better prepared to serve and lead Soldiers in their next duty position.

Click on the image to select your choice of gifts.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

A letter to my children on Father’s Day 2018

In some ways, Father’s Day gets harder as the years go by. Many years ago, I viewed myself as a very good father; not perfect but I knew what I was doing.

Well, many years have passed and I can now see many of the glaring mistakes I have made. I have learned many things in these later years that I wish I knew 20 or 30 years ago. A lot of it comes through podcasts I am listening to and some through books. The things I should have done or not done seem so clear and in some ways so easy to implement. Probably not completely true but things could have been very different in how I disciplined, led and connected. My relationship with each of you could have been a lot better.

I thank you for being understanding and forgiving.

Through the years, there have been some conversations between some of us about these things. Even when that has happened, I know it has not been enough. There are still many conversations that need to be had.

I want to invite those to happen. I know it can be hard. I know I have hurt each of you in different ways, probably mostly in ways I am still oblivious to. It is those things that keep us from experiencing the relationship that we could have.

There are things that are easy to blurt out in a moment of anger but hard to say otherwise. I want to hear those things even if it does take anger to say them. I need that and so do you. There are questions you have that are hard to ask. I want to hear them.

I know this is not an easy process and will not happen quickly. Many years have passed in making mistakes and it will take many to work toward healing. I hope we can travel that path together.

I love each of you,


Monday, April 2, 2018

On Pills and Needles by Rick Van Warner - A Review

Another binge read.

Had to force myself to put it down Friday night, read enough Saturday to almost give myself nightmares that night and finished it Sunday after Easter festivities.

So much is in the news these days about opioid addiction but I had no idea what I would learn by reading this book.

The nightmare: thinking about how easy it is for a young person to become addicted, how many die from overdose daily, and how hard it is to get off opioids  Of course the same is true for many older people but reading a father’s story of his young sons horrible journey in addiction made me think about my own precious children. It could have easily been one of them.

It starts with the drug makers and the money to be made. They promised a drug that was non-addictive but the billions they made was because it was so addictive. The politicians who could have curbed the problem before it careened out of control were bought off by the companies.

The recovery industry many times is part of the problem as well. As long as you have money upfront or good insurance, they will “help” but in so many cases they just care about making money off suffering individuals and families and in most cases don’t provide lasting aid.

The story of the family in this book isn’t sanitized. Sure it would be easy to tell a story about the teenage addict but what fills in the gaps is what was going on with the other family members. At this point the marriage has survived but that wasn’t always assured. Husband and wife constantly fighting, sometimes due to their own issues, sometimes because of the stress of the whole thing, sometimes vehemently disagreeing about the course of treatment. Siblings impacted. Debt incurred in the six figures from one treatment center after another, multiple relapses, vowing no more help, giving in again and providing help. Behavior contracts signed and soon broken. Child allowed in the home again and soon forced to leave. A father having to face his own issues. Heartache by the ton.

Questions were raised why some addicts can go through a program or not go through a program and then never use again. Encouragement and hope came and soon after was dashed. Lessons were learned about what their son really needed. As I turned each page I wondered what would come next. Would their son survive? Would the story end with relapse and death?

If you want to know the conclusion then you will have to read it yourself. But that is not all you will find out. In the end you too will understand this problem in a whole new way.

I hope this book becomes a bestseller. I hope we can learn more about this horrible addiction and the poor souls held in its grasp.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Everything Happens for a Reason: And Other Lies I've Loved - Review

I got this book yesterday and finished reading it today. I think what grabbed me was how similar it was to a story in my family.

It’s a story of cancer. A story where it comes suddenly. It appears at Stage IV and has spread to the liver and who knows where else. Maybe life can be prolonged but there will be no cure.
So where is God in all of this?

You may think it would be a sad book and not one that you would want to read. I understand that. Of course, there has to be sadness in a terrible story like this but there is also so much that can be learned when you are given an intimate window into the life of the one who is afflicted.

So where is God in all of this? That’s what the book is about. And you will be surprised at all of the twists and turns there are in thinking about that.

It’s also a book that can help us who are on the outside to better know what helps and what doesn’t.

I can’t recommend it enough!

Find more about the book here:

Everything Happens for a Reason: And Other Lies I've Loved

Friday, February 9, 2018

The Problem With Weight Loss

Me - before and after.
The problem with weight loss is: What will you do once you reach your goal? Many people decide that they will celebrate with all of the foods they have deprived themselves of. Most have no idea as they have never thought about it, somehow thinking that things will magically change once the pounds are gone.

The common thing is for people to go back to the same eating habits and before long they have regained all the weight they lost and usually more.

That is the problem with most diets. The way you eat on them is not something you can or want to continue to do.

Losing weight is hard. I know. It was over 7 years ago that I began a weight loss journey. In 9 months I lost 70 pounds. I have not gained it back. Statistically I am in a very small percentage of people.

We want a fast and easy way to lose weight that doesn’t require us to change anything long-term. The result is the long-term works against us.

In the last 7 years I have been saddened over and over to see so many friends try one fad diet after another. I think the lack of success finally convinces them that it is impossible and they might as well get used to being overweight and unhealthy.

Do you know that if you reduce your daily calorie intake by just 500 calories you can lose a pound a week? Of course that requires knowing how many calories you should have each day. You also have to track the calories of what goes into your mouth. It’s actually a lot easier that you might think.

A bunch of small steps will lead to great progress. Slow and steady wins this race.

The path I followed and the one I live by is not easy but it’s not all that hard either. It sure beats being winded by just walking up the stairs from the basement. A life change is what we need. Yes, change is hard but after a while it becomes normal and that normal can be so liberating.

I invite you to read about my journey. Your path may be a little different but I think you will find it to be a commonsense and doable way of life. Nothing for sale and no fads. Follow this link to get started: My Weight Loss Journey - 70 pounds gone. 

The problem with losing weight is that most people find it again. Don't let that be you,

Here’s to a better you!


Saturday, January 20, 2018

The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams

Do you love The Velveteen Rabbit?

Click below to see some products to help you show your love: