Wander project wander to warm…

Still wandering to the warm pictures and memories right now mostly because yesterday was a 1.4 inch rainfall day. Somewhere early in the morning yesterday, the DMV (Washington District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia) passed the 61.25-inch mark for rain this year. That makes this the all-time recorded history wettest year. It should be noted, as a weather geek, that we were 5 or more inches below average as of June 30th. To go from below average to the wettest year on record means there had to be a wet group of months. The wettest July and August recorded. An above average September and October were recorded and finally the wettest November on record.

By July 31wt the year was already above average for rain. The reality of climate change isn’t the long bemoaned global warming. That is something that happens in some places. But the presence of heat in Antarctica means it has to be cold somewhere else. If the arable lands in the world are suddenly dry, there will be a huge impact on the world. Food production is a fragile thing.  In 2018 April showers brought July Deluges! All that water has to go somewhere. It has been one of the most flooded falls in Maryland and Virginia. Add to that the fact that two hurricanes have impacted the US East Coast in the same year and the weather has been historic.

Sometimes as a person, you don’t want to make history.

The pictures today are of Rehoboth Beach in Delaware. It is a clean and wonderful beach right on the Atlantic Ocean. We enjoyed lunch in the English Fish n ’chips place. We all got hats and t-shirts on the main drag. We went to the beach for Mother’s Day. My wife loves to go to the beach. I suspect if you totaled her five all-time favorite vacations, five of them had a beach. Well maybe Europe was in the top five, so she only had 4 out of 5 beach vacations. But she loves the beach!


lost in a sea of pictures

Wander project on being a blogger….

I’ve shared the pictures before. Today, believe is the word. Inspire is the hope, but belief is the word. I am bound by who I am. I know that I have flaws. I know that I have strengths. I know the most important thing that I can do is like myself. I am not perfect nor do I think myself perfect. I know my flaws. That doesn’t mean I need others to point them out. If you point out my flaws, I expect the right to do the same for you. Sending me a message with a diatribe on the things I do wrong, doesn’t work. First, I will most likely have my feelings hurt. But second I will also place distance between myself and the other person. It is a natural reaction to being hurt particularly when it is someone that doesn’t allow that they make mistakes.

I am a person, not a blog. I try very hard to interact with other bloggers following three simple rules. They are the rules that I try to follow as a person as well.

  1. I am a human being. As they say on Reddit, remember the human.
  2. There are two sides to every story. One side may be wrong, but it deserves to be heard.
  3. No one is perfect.

My grandfather used to tell me that it was important to hear what people say. Not listen, but hear. His argument was always that listening is nodding your head. The hearing are you putting yourself in the shoes of the other person. That hearing shows that you care enough to follow rule 2. My grandfather introduced me to that; my father helped me understand the value of knowing both sides. You see if you know both sides, if you check both sides, in effect, you cannot be misled by either side. You know when one side has facts, and the other side has supposition.

Listen to what people say. Hear them so that they know they are understood, but most importantly trust but verify!



Wander project Wander to warm!!!!

I have been sharing lots of pictures of vacation Dylan and Vacation Raven. Yesterday evening as we were completing our daily walk, one of the twins reminded me of the Virginia Beach vacation. That was where Dylan decided he liked Potato Latka’s, a lot. We left a bowl of dog food out in our hotel room, for the three days we were on Virginia Beach, he didn’t eat dog food. Vacation Dylan doesn’t eat dog food. Vacation Raven does, but vacation Dylan takes the full opportunity not to be home, Dylan. Dogs on the furniture, dogs as family members are arguments I have with people from time to time. I have always believed that dogs or cats are members of the family.

If they get on the furniture, oh well.

My favorite pictures in this collection come from early in our second visit to Oak Island North Carolina. We had enjoyed going the year before with my family, so we went a second time. The pictures, in the beginning, today are off early in the week. I think either the first or second day. It has to be the second day because I took the filter off the camera after the first day.  Ruined a really good sunset with the filter, I had on. Anyway, the kids spent the first part of the week convincing Raven that moving water was ok. I suspect she ran afoul of moving water in the time before she joined our family. She didn’t like moving water when she first joined our family.

In the first couple of days, one of the twins would carry her into the water. She looked upset but not terrified. Raven had joined our family four months before and had picked the Twins as her original people. Little did we know that Raven had a long game that involved converting my wife into her person as well. The long game worked, my wife is now as devoted to Raven as the Twins are. She, in their eyes, can do no wrong! Anyway the first couple of days the twins would walk out into the water carrying her. By the end of the week, she would get in the water. Now she gets in without worrying; I guess the good memories of a forever home wipe out the bad memories that came with her to the home. Raven, like Dylan, is named for a poet. She is named for the object of Poe’s poem The Raven. Her full name is Raven Poe Andersen. When she does something, she is not supposed to do we add a second middle name (Raven Poe Marie Andersen) for effect. Dylan’s name is Dylan Thomas Andersen for the poet!


dog lover

Wander project Sun, Sand and fun!!!!

There are a couple of great pictures of vacation dogs today. Vacation Dylan is a lot different than daily Dylan. The first vacation he ever went on with us was to Virginia Beach Virginia. The Marriott hotel there allows dogs on the top two floors. That was July 2012, Dylan had been with us for about a month when we wandered off to Virginia Beach. The Vacation dog was apparent from the moment we hit the hotel. First, he didn’t eat dog food the entire weekend. He snacked on people’s breakfast and ate noodles (we made Spaghetti in the room that night for dinner). Vacation Dylan likes to sleep in the middle of hotel beds. Vacation Dylan likes to wander on the Beach.

In Virginia Beach vacation Dylan also got to go into the CVS. It is allowed in Virginia Beach for dogs to go in. “An enlightened place” I suspect Dylan would say.

The pictures today are a couple of years later (2014) on our second trip to  Oak Island North Carolina. We took both Raven and Dylan (Raven having joined our family in April of that year). This trip is the famous Drama Queen incident with Raven. She hurt the dew claw on her right front leg. We ended up putting a purple bandage on the injury. Raven liked being babied so much. At some point on the third or fourth day, I suspect the original injury no longer hurt. So, Raven started limping on the other leg. To get the sympathy that she so loves! Everyone was shocked when I pointed out to them that their dog (the twins and my wife) was, in fact, a drama queen.

Its funny, the two of them, Raven will get on the big bed in the Master Bedroom, but she won’t spend the night there. That is Dylan’s bed. He sleeps (with pillows) in the center of the master bedroom. Raven tends to sleep in the space between the twins rooms, or on one of their beds. Even vacation Raven let Dylan have the bed where my wife and I were sleeping.  That is the dynamic between the two of them since day 1. Raven has always been in charge, but she defers to Dylan when it comes to the sleeping arrangements. The complexity of the relationship the two of them have is something I should probably spend more time thinking about. Humans could learn from Dogs!


family historian

Wander project pictures of Dylan!

First of all, dogs in our house always end up getting nicknames. Dylan, the yellow lab that lives with us, has a number. When we lived in Ohio, Gwen used to go with me for long walks. She was my walking buddy. I couldn’t take her in Indiana (there were far too many other dogs, and Gwen wasn’t good about that). Dylan joined our family two years after Gwen passed.  Dylan, or the Mighty-D, TRex, Bear as he is also called, hates technology. Most of all he hates cameras. Raven, our black lab, loves having her picture taken. She will pose for the camera. Dylan sees a camera, and he is looking for a hole to hide in. Or, if he thinks he can, he will swat at the technology with his paw. He does not like cameras, Sam I am.

Not in a box or if you must ask with a fox. He does not like them not at all.

The pictures taken of him and shared today were taken, however near something that Dylan loves, water! There are a couple of parks near our house that have streams. There is one (Seneca) that has a lake. In both cases, Dylan is in the water, happy as a well Lab in water. In particular, he loves hopping in and out of the ocean for some reason that is his all-time favorite. He was even willing to let my daughter take his picture!

Before Dylan joined our family I would walk (often very long walks) 4 or 5 times a week. Since Dylan has joined our family, I walk every day. Mostly because if we don’t walk TRex comes out. TRex is Dylan’s alter ego. His, things are not going my way, so I am going to force the issue. Normally during the process between the twins being told to feed the dogs, and them feeding them. That is when TRex appears. Before that, Dylan is usually Mr. Sweet or Bear. Bear in that case short for Pooh Bear. He will snuggle up to me, and try to convince me to yell at the twins to start his dinner or that it is time to go on the walk. If I am working at home, Dylan is down in my office at 4 pm telling it is time to go (it isn’t, but he starts the process of motivating me early!)

He is a good dog!


Dylan says his daddy isn’t allowed to share more pictures….

Wander to warm project!

2018 in Maryland (US), Virginia and the District of Columbia (Washington DC) is on track to be the wettest year in recorded history. As a weather buff, I can tell you that the trend wasn’t the wettest year on record back in July. We were down 5 inches from the average rainfall as we came into July. Since July we have had the three of the wettest months ever (July, August, and November). We had snow in early November (very rare in the DMV). Weather is an interesting reality. We used to say in Indiana, don’t like the weather? Wait 15 minute it will change. That doesn’t feel as funny now as it did then. I am over rain. I am over gray clouds. My favorite weather station videos involve the beautiful dancing against a background of blue.

Not gray. I am over gray.

The pictures are from Paradise Cove in Hawaii. They are pictures of warm air, warm water, and warm breezes. A hurricane would hit the big island and later the vestiges would wander over Oahu (where paradise cove is) as well. But for the moment other than the storm clouds on the horizon it was glorious. Warm. That is the goal of the wander to warm project. Share warm pictures!

The fun thing you can do with the Amazon Alexa speakers is ask Alexa what the weather is. But you don’t have to ask the temperature where you are. You can pick any city in the world. I often ask the temperature in Honolulu HI, or Bangkok Thailand. Not only because I’ve been to both several times, but also because it is warm there. When it gets really cold in the US I miss being in Bangkok. You don’t think about things like that as a child. You think about the next thing you want to do. Back then it was go swimming. You don’t think about the fact that in the US, in December the outdoor pool is closed. The pond out behind the farm house is frozen over. The cold air seeping into your bones.

In Bangkok you just go swimming!


swimming in the pool of my mind

Wander project Holiday Decorations!

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care in hopes that St. Nicholas would soon be there. One of the greatest lines for the holidays. Perhaps only done by Clement Moore’s newspaper headline that preceded the line I started “Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.” There are many holidays this time of year. The one you celebrate is the most important one. Each of us celebrating a holiday that has meaning for us, but also has meaning for all of us. The celebration of another year completed is a wonderful time of year. When the kids were little, which is now years ago in the rearview mirror, we used to get a live Christmas Tree. We would go out the day after Thanksgiving and put the tree in the foyer of a house in Greenwood Indiana.

We would decorate the tree, string the lights (after I untangled them) and the season would begin. Now we have an artificial tree with pre-strung lights. But we’ve come to realize that the holiday cheer, the celebration of the many holidays this of the year has nothing to do with the specific holiday you celebrate or for that matter if you decorate, or don’t decorate. It has to do with family. We celebrate the joy of this time of year — the actual passing of the seasons. The leaves are falling from the sky to the ground (we got to rake and mow those already!) — the end of a year that in passing brings each of us a unique holiday. The funny thing for me now, is how late in the year we decorate our house.

Each year, again our children are older now, the entity known as Santa Claus now more a Tim Allen portrayal and less a character that breaks into shoes and leaves things behind. We begin the holiday season every year watching “The Santa Claus.” Then we move to my favorite “The Grinch that stole Christmas.” But it doesn’t which of the many holidays this time of year you celebrate. Take a moment and reflect on the year that passed. Look around you, did you leave something behind that made someone else’s day better? A smile perhaps that wasn’t there before you entered the room but was after that? A flower was given to someone to make their day a little better.

It doesn’t matter which holiday you celebrate. Your holiday is important to all of us! Even if you only celebrate the flipping of another month in your word of the day calendar!


pictures are worth more than the words you see here…