Monday, June 24, 2019

Going Sailing

Well, summer is in full swing in California, and I’ve been sailing out on the bay lately with my dad. We even took my grandparents out one day! They’re doing pretty darn well for their 80s if you ask me. I’ve really enjoyed getting out on the water lately, and the westerly winds on San Francisco Bay make for really excellent sailing weather under the summer sun.

We of course have the garden going too, many of the plants are already taller than the kids. We’re definitely looking forward to BBQs and the 4th of July as well. Somewhere amidst all the excitement, I’m still managing to get some decent writing in each day too.

So, how’s your summer shaping up? Any big plans?

Friday, May 24, 2019

My Garden

It’s that wonderful springtime of the year again, and our garden is starting to slowly come into its own. We’ve had some heavy rains lately, but hopefully not enough to spoil anything. I’m more worried about gophers returning, frankly.

This year I’ve had the kids helping me, well sort of - they’re good at tearing up dirt. We have lots of tasty things growing this year. Corn, beans, tomatoes, lettuce, sunflowers, pumpkins, strawberries, and more. I’m definitely looking forward to later this summer when our crops start to get tall.

It’s fun having a big garden in the middle of crowded suburbia. It sort of brings the countryside to our doorstep. It brings the wildlife too, especially when the racoons and possums come through, but it’s all part of the fun. How about you? How does your garden grow this year?

Monday, April 22, 2019

Guest Blog Post Today

Hi all! Today, I'm over at Maddie's Ask the Author blog. Come on by and check it out!

Thanks! And I hope you all had a very Happy Easter! 

Friday, April 12, 2019

The Simple Life

Lately, I’ve been embracing the joys of the “simple life.” What I mean of course is not taking for granted the miracles of everyday life and enjoying them to their fullest. In the hubbub of modern society, it can be very easy to get sidetracked from what really matters.

Some of my favorite pastimes these days are gardening, taking my kids to the park and t-ball games, watching my favorite baseball team, and enjoying murder mysteries on DVD with my wife. And of course reading and writing. Small, but very important pleasures in life that I don’t think I could easily do without. It’s funny, but I’ve realized lately that no amount of money, success, fame, or any other possible attainment really means as much to me as these simple pleasures. No matter the circumstances, these are the things I’d like to do with my life, and fortunately they’re already a part of my life.

I guess it simply comes down to appreciating and enjoying what you have. I know I do. More and more every day:)

Friday, April 5, 2019

1500 Books Read So Far!

I’ve just read my 1500th book! Well, I’m at least that far, anyways. I keep track of the books I read on Goodreads, and although I’ve probably left some off, I’ve conservatively read at least 1500 books in my far.

My actual goal is to read 10,000 books in my lifetime. It’ll be quite a challenge, but I’ve been reading 3-4 books per week for the last several years pretty consistently, so I definitely try to make reading a central part of my daily life.

That being said, quality always matters over quantity, and not all books are equal. I also love to reread my favorites and other classics, especially during the summer. However, historical figures from Thomas Jefferson to George Washington number amongst the people who have successfully read 10,000+ books during their lifetimes. I hope I can reach this goal at some point in the distant future.

Monday, March 11, 2019


Well, the family and I just returned from the happiest place on earth, and it was awesome! It’s especially great when you can visit Disney with little kids, but also with the grandparents too. Everyone really enjoyed the time we all spent together. In addition, there were some fun surprises along the way.

One of them was discovering Trader Sam’s tiki bar at the Disneyland Hotel resort. I ordered a drink called the Krakatoa, not realizing what I was in for. They dimmed the restaurant red, simulated a volcanic explosion, rang a bell and an air siren, alerting the entire bar that someone (me) had dared to order the Krakatoa. Needless to say, it was pretty good.

It was fun to dissolve into a fantasy world of Adventureland, New Orleans Square, and Frontierland for a few days too. Later this summer the new Star Wars land is opening up as well, so we might need to plan a trip for next year. My kids are definitely already trying to convince me.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

The Real Detective Poirot

Agatha Christie’s famed Inspector Hercule Poirot has become one of the great literary characters of the murder mystery genre. He’s also been in recent films and TV a lot as well. Sometimes for better, sometimes for worse.

I enjoyed Kenneth Branagh's version of Poirot in Murder on the Orient Express, and look forward to the next installment, which is set to begin filming very soon.

A French version of Agatha Christie’s murders has been out for a few years now on TV. While it recycles the same plots, it uses completely new characters (no Poirot, what?). The show actually isn’t too bad, but it is strange to see Poirot mysteries without Poirot in them.

The newest TV version of Malkovich’s Poirot is really the only one I cannot get behind. It’s just not done right. The feeling, the details, are all very wrong. Sorry, Mal.

Of course, the greatest televised version of Poirot, however, remains and ever will be, the incomparable David Suchet. This guy becomes Poirot on-screen, and even Christie’s living ancestors claim they think Suchet’s portrayal is the closest to what Christie herself would’ve envisioned for the famed, fictional Belgian detective.

Case closed. So what’s your favorite portrayal of Poirot?