What’s your plan?

Most people will tell you that you won’t get much out of your time in a gym if you don’t have some sort of plan. Having a plan, even a simple one, provides focus and helps you keep on track toward your goals. Frankly this is true for lots of things in life. And I’m […]

Favorite Love Tacoma Sunday memory?

Might have been one of our very first Love Tacoma Sundays. Titlow Park. Thirty-ish people, ages 1-70, armed with shovels and hoes. A huge mound of fresh bark. And right at that mound, purple plastic bucket in one hand and a little shovel in the other, 4-year-old Demara leans down from her wheelchair to scoop […]

The Magic of Going All In

Have you ever had a jellyfish fight? It’s like a snowball fight, but slimy. Instead of the brisk burst of thousands of powdery ice crystals hitting your cheek and tickling your neck, you get slapped with something like a wet Jello jiggler that smells like the ocean.

Moon jellies are a clear, non-stinging jellyfish that we have in the Puget Sound. Every once in awhile a tide will come through carrying hundreds more jellies than normal. If you just happen to be 10 and spending a weekend at the family beach cabin with cousins and friends during one of those tides, the only thing that makes sense is to fill your t-shirt with jellies until it stretches to your knees and wage war.

Have you ever skipped a sand dollar across the water’s surface? They’re infinitely better than any flat stone. Or tipped a rock to see dime-sized crabs scurry? Or filled a jar with sea glass? Or paddled a canoe late on an August night watching fish swim under the surface sending trails of tiny phosphorescent diatoms that glow and sparkle like pixie dust?

Terrified, But Doing the Brave Thing

One of my favorite rides in Disneyland is the Indiana Jones Adventure. The ride’s grand opening to the public happened during my very first trip to Disneyland. After a three hour wait, we were among the few hundred people to ride the highly anticipated new attraction. It was a glorious adventure! I don’t remember it […]

The Legacy of Faith

Through the years of my growing up and into my adult life it seemed that my mother and I were often at cross purposes. We were polar opposites in personality. She could not understand my strong-willed, survivor drive, and I certainly could not understand her tendency to just let life happen.

Even with all our differences, I have always had a sense of gratitude for the legacy that she left – a legacy of faith.

It was Mom who taught us about Jesus, who made sure we were in church every Sunday. It was Mom who stopped what she was doing to answer my questions and lead me to ask Jesus into my heart and life when I was nine. It was Mom who prayed for me as I rebelled and walked my own way.

Yep. Done it.

Here’s the ugly truth: Every time I hear of someone’s disappointment with “the church,” I find myself thinking…  “Ugh, that’s me.” Talked behind someone’s back? I’ve done it. Betrayed someone’s trust? I’ve done it. Helped someone out and made them feel like a “project?” I’ve done it. Acted fake? Lied? Shown favoritism? Been self-righteous? Definitely. […]


How is your New Year’s resolution going?

Ugh. No one is really supposed to ask that question. Two reasons why: First, we don’t want to remind people that they might be failing to keep their commitment. Second, we don’t want to be held accountable for not keeping ours.

Goals are easy to make. Harder to attain. Have you ever wondered why?

I’m going to give you the quick answer in case one of your resolutions was to read less this year.

Successfully attaining your goals requires structure.

At work, I often present on time management to either my employees or to others seeking to develop that specific skill in their work life. As part of my presentation, I lead the participants through a self-discovery exercise that looks something like this:

When God Disappoints

“I don’t want you to ‘weave’ me.”

Her words stung. My three year old daughter told me the best way she knows how that it disappoints her when I’m not present when she wakes. Unfortunately the logic about how I have to work to pay for our life doesn’t hold weight with her. It’s certainly not enough to knock the lingering guilt I carry. She doesn’t see the big picture. She just knows what she wants: me to be present throughout her day. Necessity could be debated in this scenario, but I know other times will come where I won’t be able to prevent my kids from being disappointed with me.

I have a friend who’s a single mom, and as much as she would love to, chronic and severe back pain preclude her from playing soccer with her son. He continues to ask, because he doesn’t understand. And he’s disappointed. Another friend is working through the hurt and disappointment of her toddler following his dad’s recent deployment. None of them chose those circumstances, but they have to walk through them. And the children were or are disappointed. Understanding the why behind the circumstance might or might not change that. That’s hard to say.

The Songs I Sing


I sing little songs to myself while I’m waiting.

This fact was made known to me quite recently, and I haven’t stopped thinking about it since.

I teach classes for a non-profit organization. As part of my job, I demonstrate procedures before I have the class follow along with me.

Several months ago, while I was waiting for the computer to process the steps I had just entered, I sang to myself. The class proceeded to sing the little tune with me before they erupted with laughter. Shocked, dismayed, and wholly confused, I asked what had struck the class with amusement. They reported with glee:

“You always sing that song while you wait.”