social media...

Twitter is someone at a bar who has a funny joke to tell you. Facebook is a relative that wants you to watch a slide show of their vacation. Matt Thompson via Bob and Tom.

Could not have described it better. There are many that would disagree with me and believe me, Facebook has been very good to me. Not unlike church, I have made some great friendships and even found long, lost relatives. Enough to stay loyal, for a time.

Remember My Space? Never go into it but it is the grandfather of social media. Maybe it is not fair to compare Twitter and Facebook. Maybe they really are apples and oranges but the thing is, we can only eat so much fruit. Unless someone wants to develop a 12 step program for those who binge on edible reproductive body of a seed plant.

Twitter clicks all the boxes for me. Latest news, a good Story and whatever the lastest thing Jerry Seinfeld is doing. If something personal happens, someone will let me know. Then why do I still have a Facebook account? Good question. Maybe loyalty, always hoping for it to kick it up a notch but remember...would you expect an apple to do a citrus job?

Maybe I will watch the 20 year olds and see what they do. AFter all, they are the future. Come to think of it, I don't see many of them on either platform. Will social media as we know it go by the way of cable TV. These 20 somethings won't pay for TV. Some have Netflix or Hulu Plus but most watch from the portable devices and don't have to see the latest episode of Downton Abbey, as it is happening. They are way better at delaying gratification that we are. Look out Cable TV, you make have to rethink your, Are you ready for some football marketing?The worse part, they will do be doing the same thing for their kids.

What will social media look like in 5 years, 10 years? Whatever its form, SM is here to stay. We are more and more mobile everyday. Move over AA, there is a new kid in town...

one year anniversary...

Tomorrow marks the first anniversary of retirement. It has been quite a year, health issues along with learning a new way, has felt at times, like we have been paddling just to stay afloat. Health issues are better, and learning how to spend more time together is getting to be a adventure. We refer to everyday as being on vacation, believe it or not - that has been a life saver. We laugh as much as we can, at our own expense is the best but keeping one eye on the proverbial clock, we know that each day is a gift.

We will celebrate tomorrow spending the day with our girl and grandbabies. Can think of no better way to mark the occasion. Whatever the day brings, we will be thankful for this year and for all the days to come. This last year has been a year of trial and error, and more trial and error. Thinking we have got it down, lets get ready to rubble...

Statues in the park...

I hate poetry.
I love Billy Collins.

Anything with his name, I will read. He makes it real without all that rhyming going on. Dr Suess is about all I can handle and, in small amounts. Billly Collins is the Real Deal, there is no turning away evern when it is hard and hurts. Something to learn, something to beleive in and something to be thankful for.

Anytime something teaches you something that you felt was worth your time, you tend to pay attention. Over and over again. Statues in the Park is a wonderful piece and it doesn't hurt that it comes from the book, The Trouble With Poetry.

Statues in the Park

I thought of you today
When I stopped before an equestrian statue
in the middle of a public space.

you who had once instructed me
in the code of these noble poses.

A horse rearing up with two legs raised,
you told me, meant the rider had died in battle.

If only one leg is lifted,
the man had elsewhere succumbed to his wounds;

and if four legs were touching the ground,
as they were in this case-
bronze hooves affixed to a stone base-
it meant that the man on the horse,

this one staring intently
over the closed movie threatre across the street,
had died of a cause other than war....

The poem doesn't end there but goes on to talk about others who have died in battle yet no statues for them. The statues of the sickly, the suicides, the murdered and the drowned. And, he ends it like this.

And there was I.
up on a rosy-gray block of granite
near a cluster of shade trees in the local park,
my name and dates pressed into a plaque,

down on my knees, eyes lifted,
praying to the passing clouds,
forever begging for just one more day.


There are things in our lives that are progressive. That means that it is marching on, like it or not. There are also some progressives that can be held in check and some that, no matter what, we have no control over.

Some diseases are progressive. Parkinson's, MS and diabetes. In fairness to diabetes, it is agreed upon that with change, the disease can be held in check, sometimes even elimated but for most, it is a lifelong struggle at best. Obesity was offically changed to a disease last week. One is no longer obese, now, one has obesity. This is going to bankrupt insurance companies. Expect big changes in the workplace. Alcoholism is also progressive, just like drugs and food, it takes more and more to keep an acceptable level of being. Wonder why it takes 6 brownies instead of two to make the voices in your head...stop. Same disease, different symptoms.

The one we all share and can relate to is age. No human has ever beat it. Money cannot assure that the cancer won't spread, and spread quickly. Some of us are given many years, years to become parents and grandparents. To see the world change, for better and worse. Some are given shorter terms. Lives cut short, very little progession in their lives. Some never make it out the hospital doors. I always imagine they may see themselves as lucky.

We went bike riding last night with our kids and grandkids. Beauty and the Beast kept up pretty well for 3 or 4 miles and then we had to stop and sat at a picnic table while they continued on. It is hard to admit that you can't keep up but it needed to be done. We could have continued on and tried to kill ourselves to keep up but, somehow we have made peace with doing what we can do and being semi-ok with that. When they came back, we were ready to head back and finish our ride. It was a great night for biking, no matter how far you went.

With all things progressive, there are consequences. We do the best with what we are given and as the kids say, You get what you get and don't throw a fit. Whatever progressives are in your life right now, learn to make peace with. Give them due respect. It may be the smartest thing you ever do....

summer 2013...

School got out the end of May. Even though it is not officially summer then, we all think it is and act accordingly. Summer only started Friday and already there has been a week of VBS, swim lessons, tutoring and just finished a week of horseback riding lessons.

Morgan took to this like a fish to water. I imagine I will be visiting her on her big ranch in Ada County in the not so far future. Since she is not allowed to date until she is 30, she will need extra help with the animals and will not venture far. The boys are also liking being out and being told, You are the boss...make sure your horse knows that. What kid wouldn't like being the boss?

As I reflect on what the rest of this summer will look like, I can't help but thinking about last summer. I was sick, the sickest I have ever been. There was no light at the end of the tunnel. It was a dark time for me personally. I will never forget. Someone I know is going through a dark time this summer. I told them my Story and told them not to give up hope. While their memory of this time will always be difficult, I hope they can share their Story next summer with someone going through the same thing.

We almost have a year of retirement behind us. DH says it is still tough, just living with me should be a reward, all its self. Planning a big trip next year so think we will lay low this year. I feel better and that is fun enough for me. We have had a lot of adjustments this year and I think we have weathered this, pretty well.

So Summer 2013, bring it! Different mindset, different year, time to renew and party on!!!!


last Saturday was family picture day. It a day that the sooner and better you smile, the quicker this whole thing will go. They are now at the age where they are more able to control themselves and smile for a few sconds. 381 shots later, it looks like we will be doing this again in a few weeks.

Not because of the closed eyes, of which there were many or the eyes looking around. It has to do with someone getting their bangs cut a few hours before Picture Time. You should also know that we had to stop at the same salon to have the bangs, fixed. That alone, tells the whole Story.

With multiple locations and the getting in and out of the car, there has to be some downtime. I love taking photos of them as a family and as much as mommy wants a canvas on her big living room wall with everyone smiling, down by the river..this is the one I would choose.

Really, the haircut is all you can see?

His charm just kept oozing out the whole time. Miss M was cuteness galore and Keaton's face just loves the camera. Despite the rough start, it was a great time.

Look forward to doing it again in a few weeks. Canvas worthy is the name of the game but these photos, the uncanvas worthy will always make me happy as all photos should do. Love you buddy!

Fathers Day...

Growing up in my house, parents were in two catagories, evil and the lesser of evil. My father was the lesser and understand that the lesser evil is still, evil. I can not relate to all the mushy stories about fathers and love and trust and caregiving. Not until that is, I look at my favorite son-in-law. I don't know how any child could go wrong with the love I see him lavish on my grandchildren.

When they were little, he went to every doctor appointment and has missed very few since all three kids were born. He is strict when he has to be, encouraging every day and shows his love everywhere. They might grumble and complain about the rules, now that they are older but not a one of them would deny that his love, surrounds him. The idea of God being a father figure, must have been easy for them to grasp. It was much tougher for me. I had no reference point and the ones I had were, unspeakable. I really thought that every day went on dates with underwear in a paper bag, in case they got lucky. My mormal wasn't and it took many, more years for me to grow up and see what a real father looks like.

Wherever this Fathers Day takes you, I hope it is a good one. Good memories, good Stories and if they are still around, a call or a visit. If not, look around and see if there are fathers out there that could bring the concept of God to you, firsthand. That is my Fathers Day wish for each of us...


We all have core and secondary beliefs. I would guess that core beliefs make up 25% of our belief system with secondary ones, picking up the rest. In both belief systems, there is change. Obviously more in the 75%, where the ins and outs of everyday life are played out. What is relevant one day, is no longer the next day. Even the core beliefs see change. Different seasons of life, changes you never saw coming, tragedy and surprises, can shake a core belief, forever.

We may be creatures of habit but those habits can be fluid. You may never pick up a drink in your life but still be an alcoholic. Addiction is addiction, some are just more politically correct than others. The thing about beliefs is we make choices from minute to minute, based on those beliefs.

I have added to my core beliefs, many times. I have also eliminated some. Some beliefs come with age, some with circumstance and the older you get, the more they change. Here is small sampling of what is going on in my head, today

It is not exercise if you don't sweat.

Living in denial is not for the faint of heart, the cost is very real.

When you make a choice for a lifetime, you must burn your ships. If you don't, you will, you will climb back on board.

man's best friend...

These two are pretty good buddies. They spent a week alone together a few weeks ago when the rest of us went to the Oregon coast. Banjo has spent a bit of time with us and it seems to suit him. Everytime we go to his house, hwe are greeted like royalty. Before we can drop a purse, or take off a jacket, he is all over us to give im a little love. He does firmly believe he should get attention before Freckles, Freckles or Blondie get any kind of a greeting.

He has no qualms about being your best friend if you are eating Something that hints of meat. Whatever you have is better than what is in his bowl, is his theory and if begging is what it takes, he has no shame. Likewise, when it is time to go outside, you are not left unclear as to what is going on and what is needed, RIGHT NOW!

He is our fourth grandchild. He loves Brandi, will lay at the door for hours waiting for her to come home. Saturday, at the yard sale, he was able to fall asleep in her arms, just like that. I have never seen anything like it. He feels so comfortable with her, it is a wonderful thing to behold.

While he loves my girl, he has a bit more love to share with the rest of us and poppa gets to have some one on one time with man's best friend, without the work, The perfect relationship...

yard sale, 2013 style...

It was a good day for a yard sale. With Ozzie keeping watch, we managed to unload quite a few treasures that we had been holding on to. Treasures that we, at some point inour lives, could not live without. Brandi had a great idea on how to market the Legos, $4 a bag, you choose. We had a father and son team that spent a good half hour in the blazing sun, going through all three containers. We thought they were crazy to sit and sift through all those pieces but it was obvious theny were on some kind of mission.

We had Sam or was it Phil?, he talked about himself in the third person and explained that he was into buttons and pins. Kind of creeped you out but we just went on. There were the offers that had no basis in reality and some good old fashioned, haggling. The old men who just wanted to talk,and the never before seen neighbor who lived a block over, that way. As it always is, a yard sale reminds you that life is not simple, and that every transaction whether human or financial, is an experience. We don't see the value of many things equally, nor do we agree on what is fair. It is a great place to practice manners, please, thank you and have a good day.

Some people want their new belongings put in a bag, some do not. When something is sold by the bag, there is always, always, someone who instead of buying 2 bags, insists on overfilling the one bag and pretending like no one will notice. And for those who speak of themselves in the third person, there are no words. Thank you again, Yard Sale, good lessons, good times...

one on one...

We all have times that we are better than we think. The times you think you were pretty good, probably wouldn't pass the mustard test. It is those time you are unaware but are present. I am most comfortable being, one on one. I like the idea of sharing with someone and being shared.

I can give you my full attention, the most I have in any given Moment.
I will laugh with you, I will cry with you.
I will thank God for you.

None of us are islands, onto ourselves, Some need more island, some need to get out more. Even my workout time is done on the island. because I have been forced by outdated machines, I am no longer in my little corner on the treadmill, by myself. I have to get out among the English, people on either side of me, and it is testing me Big Time. I had to ask at the desk today when the replacement machines would be in. They don't know, they have been ordered. I know they will not be there tomorrow, I will have to go to the mainland to get my sweat on.

One on One, when our time together was done, I would give you a big hug because I have been blessed by you sharing your time with me. Truly, from the bottom of my heart, I appreciate the view from your side of the island. The older I get, the more I understand...there is much to see and by sharing, we all get to see just a bit more, get that one little piece of the Puzzle that might allude us otherwise. Thank you and much love from Island zalaine...


Had a wonderful visit with Uncle Dean last week. First road trip of retirement, the 6 hour drive was breathtakingly beautiful. It is really a miracle that we made it, or that we found my uncle.

I had looked for him for several years. The phone number I had was no longer in service. I knew he had a heart attack a while back so put the two together and figured he was gone. Had heard from a long lost not relative that his wife had died, all the signs pointed to, I was too late.

For many and various reasons, have not had any contact with my father's side fo the family for many years, at least 25 since my father's death. I had searched Facebook before with little success but I tried and ried again, and about a month ago, they all popped up. Cousins, aunts and uncles, all in one place. So I knew my uncle was still alive, it was just a matter of time before I got his number and we were on our way.

We just stayed a day, he wanted us to stay longer but he had fishing and we had Keaton's graduation from middle school. We happily talked the day away and then dinner and then more talk. My cousin and her daughter and husband who live next door visited until the wee hours. We all were tired, hit the hay, day done. In the morning we visited a bit more and headed home.

You would think it would be difficult to catch up on 25 years yet it didn't go that way. I filled in blanks for him and he gave me some answers I had been looking for. He was only 8 when I was born and I spent alot of time living with my grandparents and uncle when I was a child. I told him I was sorry if I was a pain, he said I wasn't. He said I had brushed shoulders with Frank Sinatra as had he. He was in junior high and it made as big an impressions on him as it did me. He told me about his experience with Danny Thomas, wow.

As I have reflected back on the visit, of this I am sure. Being a Daniels has and always be a part of my DNA. We are natural Storytellers and comedians. We have big attitudes and most of what everybody does, hits us the wrong way. We would like to beat up more people than we do, and religion is such a part of our Story, not because we all believe but because we don't.

Thanks for the hospitality, Uncle Dean! Good luck on your next bass tournament, may God bless you real good...


Whether you consider yourself artistic or not, we all draw. We do it with our lives. Seriously, today I experienced it during the singing time at church.

Pastor Sam weaved the music together and it fell right into place. by the last stance of the last song, you could see it. If you understand that God loves you and you take that to heart, believe it... you will never feel alone. Will it change the cirmstances of your life? Will it hedge all bets about Bad Thinks happening to you? No, but you will never walk alone. That is the promise.

We draw pictures everyday with our lives to those around us. To those we are around alot, they will see more. A stranger may only have one shot at you and you may blow it. It may be a bad day, legit or not but make no mistake, you will draw a picture for them to take home and remember and if they ever run into you again, your drawing will come up for immediate recall for them, just as it has been for us and all the them out there whose drawings have crossed our paths.

Whatever your medium is, on any given day, you draw a legacy for all to see. Your words, actions,even your attention suggest a page, rich in detail.

What did you draw today? What did it say to you? What do you think it did for those around you? Whether scribble or prose, today's drawing reflects you and where your head is. Hope you drew an accurate account and left some good stuff behind, even if it only said, SOS...


I can't imagine any of us like being associated with exaggeration but it is part of the human experience. Anyone who says it isn't part of their lives is lying, another thing that we all have in common.

We use exaggeration for many different reasons and results. To feel better about ourselves, to make ourselves look better in our own eyes as well as those around us. We use the Big E when we tell Stories because we think our Stories will be more interesting if the fish weighs 50 lbs instead of 3 lbs, 4 oz. When telling Stories of girl and guy behavior, exaggeration is a given, believe only 50% and you will be much closer to the truth.

If exaggaeration is about more.... Like the one old woman said to the other, I already told you more than I know, What is it called when it goes the other way? Imagine telling someone you weigh100 lbs more than you do? Then they would think you were tiny for your weight Or shorter, or not as bright. I may be on to something here. Accentuate the negative.

At times, there is a fine line between exaggeration and truth. When I say spending an hour every Sunday with my grandson in church is like heaven on earth to me, I am serious, yet someone else may think I am embellishing plight. In this case, I am not. I am very aware of every moment and the more days I have behind me than in from of me, I realize it more and more.

Exaggaration or truth,

I now weigh what it says on my drivers licence.

I have bumped into Frank Sinatra.

If I have ever told you I love you, it is as true today as the day I said it, no matter what...All truth. You look marvelous darlin, never better...All the Big E.