Hawaii 2010

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Sunday, June 30, 2013

Home again

12 day trip, 2 days in New Orleans, 2 days in Pascagoula/Moss Point/Gautier Mississippi, six days on Pensacola Beach Florida, 2 days traveling by air to and from New Orleans on Southwest.

Great change of pace, reminder I come from family and have a heritage, including this picture from Mom and Dads black and white photo Album, although we know nothing about the picture, this group has some of our ancestors.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Vacation winding down

This morning we engaged in a massive packing and cleaning of the vacation rental, and hugged and left. We enjoyed being with our relatives and getting to know some for the first time.

The above picture is missing three who had to leave early, but it was a special thing to enjoy a huge fish fry and shrimp bowl and firework display and lingering conversation on our last day.

We have returned to Mississippi for a quiet evening before making our way to the New Orleans airport and home tomorrow to our lonely cat and our life in AZ.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Family Reunion Day Five

Yesterday and today four more families showed up to enjoy reconnecting the Kennedy Childrens descendants. Harold, Charles, Bob,Edna Wilma, Esther, Dorothy, and Millie.

The wind changed and our beautiful clear water became green with algae so a lot of folks stayed out of the water. I swam, cleaned up and took our family to the Pensacola Naval Air Museum, a favorite stop for us.

Then a big dinner with pictures again in anticipation of our final fish fry tomorrow before we head home.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013


Today we discovered the Pensacola Beach drink, a chocolate iced smootie with a healthy dose of rum, very thick and refreshing, as was the day of swimming out to the sandbar and floating, relaxing and resting. We have had between 18 and 20 all week and tonight Cousin Bob and Betty joined us from south Florida. We looked at family pictures, had a fun fireworks show put on by the young men in the family, and lots of great pizza for dinner.

As usual I lurk like a shadow with my camera looking for shots several times during the day, including the one of Ben doing a sparkler dance.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Walking the Day Away

Laura and I walked to the pier today over 2 miles each way, punctuated by breakfast down at the main beach. Then swimming and some slide show reminiscing. A dinner at Pegleg Petes fine seafood restaurant, and Band at the Beach which was very packed with music lovers. I decided to walk home again, so my tootsies are tired tonight, but the day was well spent with the the lovely families were are getting to know after all these years apart.

The Beach had installed a huge Ferris Wheel, which Linda has advertised as a real attraction. We arrived to discover that they had cashed in their chips in Pensacola for lack of ridership and sold it to Atlanta. In one day all the cars were removed and packed in storage containers for moving.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Relaxing by the ocean kind of day

Two long walks today, some fun swimming, a trip to the beach shop, playing games with out relatives....I see why this ocean type home rental is so popular.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Past meets present on the Lord's Day

We enjoyed reconnecting with dear friends from the Moss Point Church today were we left 24 years ago after serving there six years and seeing the home we had our young children grow up in while in that community. Then to Pensacola to a beautiful beach front property where we are seeing our New York relative after many dedades of separation. The kids went crab hunting, and the last picture is a moment of terror when a large crab escaped on the back porch. Fun beginning of our beach week.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Vacation Day five-Ship Island, MS

A return trip to ship island was an adventure for our family on Saturday, as two large boatload of folks are taken to a small barrier island National Park eleven miles of shore from Gulfport, Ms. with a prisoner built Civil War Fort that never fired a shot, and a lovely beach where each day of the swimming season a community of fun lovers gathers for a day of sun bathing and swimming. Some of the sand was black...really. The island is marshy and full of interesting birds and crabs and ocean habitat.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Lazy, crazy, hazy, walk down memory lane

Melissa left Mississippi 23 plus years ago, and it was fun to see her remember houses and friends. We went by West Elementary which was a fun experience for her, and many other places during the long day.
I came back totally soaked from a steamy walk through the bayous.
We played in several parks with sweet gum trees, magnolias, and stately live oaks.
We lunched on the famed Krystal Burgers, and had catfish at Aunt Jennys in Ocean Springs, a repeat trip for us every time we are hear. The day was accented by some nice shopping, and some incredible summer thunderstorms.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Mi double s,i double s, i double p, i

Today we left New Orleans and drove into Laura's home state to enjoy her Aunt Martha's hospitality. We had lunch at The Shed, a junky eatery that is put together with everyones castoff junk and cooks some fine BBQ, then to see the Mississippi gulf sound, and then Aunt Marthas home in Gautier.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Vacation Day 2 New Orleans home of Jazz

Began our day at 10 am, unable to defeat the two hour time difference. Enjoyed a two hour lunch cruise on the Natchez Steam Paddlewheeler. Good cruise on the Mississippi River, good food and live jazz in the dining room.
We enjoy coffee at the Holy Grail of Coffee and Donutes, Cafe Du Mondes.
After a good meal and Ralph and Kakoo's Restaurant we lined up for the Holy Grail of Jazz, Preservation Hall and really enjoyed the music, including the piano and bass players from the Steamboat Cruise.
We are always amazed at the street performers we see, and this guy really made a good haul outside the boat zone, he froze himself into what looked like a fast walk and held it for over half an hour. Impressive.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Vacation Day 1 New Orleans

Not crazy about Southwest Air returning to open seating, we all three were separated in middle seats for the packed flight to Houston. We enjoyed appetizers and gumbo at Mr. B's Bistro, and then walked around a lot enjoying a cool moist evening, the craziness of people in New Orleans, and began planning for our long day tomorrow.

The St. Louis, where we stayed in 2010 and honeymooned in 1975 has been bought and remodeled. Very nice. So is the Bienville House where we are staying.
All the tourists seem to be enjoying the atmosphere and dining. It a special place.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Home Decor

Our daughter Melissa has decoration credentials and gifts. Here are some results of a day at our home last week.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Father's Day 2013

My father was a good man. He was not a perfect man. He was private, quiet, unable because of his own childhood to really teach and model for his children how to live. By the time I reached an impressionable age, as I look back, he was already caught in a struggle for survival as choices in his career path led us away from security into struggle.

We moved alot for his work because his work was suffering from economic reality. He became a traveling salesman for all of my Junior and Senior High Years in order to help us survive financially. Not the best choice for a strong family. But we made it, and my parents loved each other, and they made it to a meager but authentic retirement, and, as with all flesh, to the grave. I loved them and the life they were able to give me.

Father's Day for the last 8 years has taken on a new meaning for me, when I realized that a quest that began in 2001 found its conclusions in a rediscovery of Fathers love for the world.

I began to spend Father's Day at Father's Day Conferences, where I began to question my views of God the Father that I had been taught not by my own Father,but by my Calvinist Theological training. It was a long journey that led me to the confession that I loved Jesus and was terrified by His angry Father.

The realization that Jesus came to restore a proper image of His Father, sent by His Father, sent to turn the false views that had captured Isreal, and to set us on a new covenant path of walking in Father's love and reconciliation was for me the beginning of an inner revolution that I enjoy to this very moment.

Proclaiming Father's love for the world and the implications of that love will fuel the rest of my journey to an authentic retirement and, as with all flesh, to the grave, will help my own children whom have seen an imperfect man struggle with the choices of his own career, even though it was a career of ministry and service.

I am on vacation and not leading services this morning, and I thought about visiting a local mega church up the street, until their website advertised the sermon entitled, "What Thor teaches about fatherhood?". The fact that this church feels the need to refer to a norse mythological god and a popular movie to talk about Father is a sad testimony to what we have lost.

Last time I had a Sunday off I attended another mega church that has a better reputation for Christ centered preaching and mission and though I was impressed, I was only a visitor and there is no place for me there. I must bring this vision of the Father's love for all the lost sons and daughters of Adam and Eve. It must flow through me and around me and to others, so that some restoration of truth take place in a culture badly damaged by a theology of separation and superiority, rather than reconciliation and forgiveness.

I loved my father and the life he was able to give us, and until I enter the mystery of God's all in all I will continue to grow in that knowledge and pray it affects the content of my character.

Come with me back to the Bible belt as I visit the old south and see family and friends, I can go back to that beautiful south, but I can never go back to the way I was, I have been not whistling dixie for too long.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Still confused by the Ti4

Spent a lot of time trying to master the settings of my new Canon, and it still is not up to par in terms of the fuzzy focus issues. I know that a small aperture gives wide sharp pictures....usually...but not consistently on this camera?????

I did buy a sling strap that allows the camera to slide up easily for a shot and hangs upside down and protected by your hip and hand.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Golf Cart sitting is fun

This was a Pensacola Beach Family Gathering from 30 plus years ago.

The Church owns an old golf cart which works fine and is available to me. It goes 8 mph and the newer ones go 15mph. Twice this month I have driven my friend Marvins cart, or his wife's more technically, to keep it from losing charge, and as I drive to the course to play, to lunch, I get the feeling of how functional it is when you are retired to have one car and one cart. There are a few tricky crossovers on Riggs, but all doable.

Getting the last lists checked for our departure to the Old South early next week.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Empty Chairs and Empty Tables

Saw the Shelby GT racer in the gym parking lot recently.

This office recarpeting has coincided with my personal vacation is such a way as to make even office computing temporary as the power cords are all packed up. Therefore, when I leave the office today I am on our official vacation from June 14 through June 30.

I have some spiritual plans that require the time away, and some family joys that allow the joys of travel, and time to pursue the joy of travel photography, which will be shared often in this blog and on facebook. I am hoping as we all do for safe travel and steady health during that time away. I know the needs of the weekly church gathering will be ably filled.

Had a fulfilling morning with friends at an early breakfast discussing what the gospel has done for the world, and God's hope that we grow up and be mature and complete in Him, and thereby serve the world with the new commandment.

Father's Day for me in recent years has become a celebration of the Father's love for the lost sons and daughters of Adam, who inherit a new promise with the completed work of Christ.

It is also the traditional time for the U.S. Open Golf Tourney and I will enjoy watching the golfers play a specifically challenge test of their skill under pressure to the highest prize in Golf, a major win.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The streets of Paris

The new recumbent bicycle at the Gym has programed rides through major cities and sites. You reward is to reach the Eiffel Tower.
It was quite diverting and enjoyable and with background street sounds and music as well.

This bike is so great as it helps new people get going without stress on the joints and back, it gets a lot of use and we enjoy biking as part of our aerobic mix.

My office is empty and we are officially on vacation beginning Friday, with a departure from town next week.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Loving what is

I was tired last night

Busy day yesterday enjoyed our volunteers who assemble our lunches for the Phoenix Rescue Mission Hope Coach distibution. Drove our food and water to the mission 30 miles aways seeing as we do briefly, an Indian Reservation on the way, drove by the vast complex that is Joe Arpaio's army against crime and drug use and illegal immigration and then to the mission where tons of food arrives early in the week from stores and farms and local ministries to feed the homeless and struggling folks.

In and out of several worlds, all broken, yet all working to make things a bit better in this present world.

Then we were invited to dance at a local Casino with some friends who love to dance. Once again on Indian property, these late afternoon gatherings of retirees allow them to enjoy the pure pleasure of moving to the beat of the really fine music. As our hosts commented, everyone here is just having fun. We saw a couple who were 87 and 84 who have been dancing together every week for the long marriage and still laughing and moving and showing true affection in their dance. The Hispanic band played some of the most beautiful mexican dancing music, and all the old favs these folks remember from their own youth. "I found my thrill, on Blueberry hill"!!!!

One of our goals as we approach retirement in a few years is to revive that rhythm in our own dancing life. We are making slow progress, but with that crowd, the effort is all that counts. Of course, I will not become one of the poor people sitting at those ringing machines smoking like chimney stacks. Gambling and smoking see to be shared addictions.

In and out of so many different worlds in one day, and if I had a God's eye view, how many worlds and cultures does He see around the world, how much daily struggle, daily joy, daily fun, and daily heartbreak. Believing He cares means a lot to me.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Sharing my pulpit for a good purpose

Learned about missions in Thailand, a country where the sins of the west are destroying the culture. Teen pregnancy, alcoholism, sex trafficking.

Still people are finding hope, and education and purpose in the Gospel work going on.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

The Big Island


We enjoyed an evening with friends who helped us to make decisions about enjoying Hawaii on our fall trip. They caught the Aloha spirit and have visited all the islands, but the big Island became their favorite, and we were interested to find out why.

We now have a much better idea of the place to stay that fits us, the top ten sites to visit, and some eating places they enjoyed. We are looking forward to this trip a great deal. What did they say as to why it was a favorite.....it's BIG.

Once, at the end of an extended stay, husband told wife he had figured out a plan that they could afford to live there, and what did she think.....after a pause, she replied. "I sure will miss you". Too cute.