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I am a Loon!

Yesterday, for the first time, I played underwater hockey with the Minnesota Loons. What could be more fun than donning mask, snorkel, fins, glove, headgear, and stick, and heading for the bottom of the pool to whack a 3 1/2 pound puck around with a group of swimmers? Some Loons…

Air Bud

Buddy loves to launch himself off the porch in search of squirrels in the backyard. All day long he stand expectantly at the back door waiting for us to open it. When we do, he takes a quick circle around the yard and then runs back into the house to…

NWF Action Fund Action Center

I have worked the last two and a half years to save the Phillips Community Center swimming pool to get kids swimming so we can reconnect them to the outdoors in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. The National Wildlife Action Center has an initiative to reconnect kids to the outdoors.…

Boys and their ideas

A whole crew of neighbor boys came over to the house yesterday to eat some fresh homemade chocolate chip cookie I was making.  While the boys were waiting for the cookies, they picked up my single squirt gun and started playing with it.  Then they started fighting about who gets…

Prison Theology

Yesterday I got a letter from a young man in prison. He write to me at least once a week, sometimes more often than that. A few weeks ago, he told me he was reading the Bible from cover to cover to see if its true. Based on his letter…

This cat is a killer

Nico is a bad girl. She kills birdies and I don't like it. Despite our best efforts she manages to get outside too often. Yesterday Carlyle fixed her good with a watchband collar connected to a fishing pole bell. Now if she gets out, the birdies have a fighting chance…

The Sinai Project is Reborn!

Back in 2008 I took a trip to Sinai to research the possibility of building an eco-farm community to help orphans and widows.  We toured a community called New Basaisa, founded by Professor Salah Arafa from the American University in Cairo.  Back 30 years ago, Professor Arafa started travelling to…

The glorious outdoors

On Wednesday I took Ahmed to Moir Park in Bloomington to make a bat house as part of an REI event.  We made a bat house and then went for a walk along 9-mile Creek.  We walked across some rocks into the creek to look inside a drainage pipe.  Ahmed…

Laundry — Egyptian style

Recently our dryer quit working.  That provided the final motivation for Kevin to make me a balcony clothesline.  In Egypt everyone dries their clothes on balcony clotheslines.  It's perfect.  It doesn't take up any space in the yard.  I hang clothes at waist level rather than having my arms extended overhead.…

Trash pickup with the kids

This is the fourth week we have organized the neighbor kids to do volunteer work to earn a picnic, s'mores, and kickball in the park.  I believe kids benefit when they earn rewards  -- work builds character, helps develop self-esteem and keeps them from developing an attitude of entitlement. Yesterday…

Clean Booty

After years of wishing, I finally got a bidet for the upstairs toilet.  Oh boy, is it wonderful.  Thank you Kevin!  The installation was not without its challenges though.  Our toilet has the toilet and tank integrated together.  Kevin had to cut the plastic flanges off the toilet seat and…

The big guy and the big stick

This one was too big for Andy dog.  He tried to get this stick to carry on our walk at Minnehaha Fall.  It took a bit of convincing to get him to give up and find another stick. Yesterday Carlyle, Andy and I went to Banning State Park hiking.  This…