Wednesday, December 28, 2022

Always Learning


I hope you survived the latest storm. I don't think any state in the continental 48 was exempt from that. 

Da harbor was pretty much shut down, I heard. I wasn't even there to witness the winds and drifts building out of control. That's a weird, slightly helpless yet relieved feeling. 

I went to my parents' house where I got to meet my new niece, Ruby! She was born to my brother and his awesome wife. Ruby is 5 months old and so precious! I love those guys.

Brady was jealous I held her for a few naps though...

It was puzzling.

Here is something for you to ponder.

B can read at the third grade level. He can name more animal species than almost every adult I know. He likes his space picked up and organized.

He understands that every human is worth asking their name along with a hug or handshake. He is amazingly compassionate and helpful if someone gets hurt or is sad.

But what he can't yet do is recognize his own emotions very well.

When he is having a hard time, he either shuts down or acts out for attention (if that's what he was seeking) in a negative way. 

After dealing with his new, slightly aggressive behavior at my parents' house, we began to realize what was going on. I gave a little talk to everyone with him in the room.

Once we were all on the same page, his behavior changed. He would sit on our laps and snuggle with us for attention instead of throwing things.

Cuz the latter just ain't safe!

B has a great team throughout his family and school, and we are all trying to work through this. It's important to get it right because he is honing and navigating those emotional neural pathways.

It's interesting because he is a genius in some aspects, but a toddler in others.

We all learn a lot and practice patience.

Back to the family story, he was such a stinker that we told him Santa wasn't going to come. But Santa didn't get the memo in time, and he came anyway.

The big guy found us!

Thanks, Santa!

I hope you are in good spirits and ready for a new year!

But if you're not, please realize you shouldn't have to wait for a new year to make a change in your life -- if you need one.

You can do it any day you wake up. Or any minute you feel you've had enough.

Believe in yourself today, baby!

Wednesday, December 21, 2022

Somebody to Be There

Happy Winter Solstice!!!

It's one of my favorite days to celebrate. The days will now get longer (for all my friends in the northern hemisphere)! Out of the darkness and into the light. Whew!

Just a simple, but powerful thought for you this time.

Sometimes all a person needs is somebody to vent to. To tell their troubles. To say it out loud and feel heard.

If someone chooses to do that with you, all you really need to do is listen. It's important for their healing.

Sometimes you have a load you need to get off your heart. Or get the swirling thoughts out of your brain even if you think they are dumb.

Then you need to find a person you trust to vent to and find the courage in yourself to bear it all as honestly as you can.

That is also healing.

And sometimes it is all we need.

That and a deep breath.

Happy holidays to you and yours!

Backlit frost at night

Wait! Bonus!

If you ever wanted to view my first cold water immersion experience in Lake Superior (besides the typical jump in and get the heck out!), you can check it out on my Youtube channel!

Wednesday, December 14, 2022


This kid.

He never ceases to amaze me.

A couple days ago, we were playing the "guessing game" with his National Geographic animal cards. I like these cards because the animals usually have two or three words to describe them. They are often pictures and facts about a specific species.

Animals like: Mexican fireleg tarantula, Harlequin ghost pipefish, South American gray fox, Rock hopper penguin, etc.

All those animals are really neat. But do you want to know the neatest part?

Brady P. can read all those names.

*** MIND BLOW!!!***

I mean, sure, he has seen those cards dozens of times. Maybe he is memorizing some of the names, but we have at least 50 of those cards (can't have enough!), so he does rely on the words for cues. I can see his eyes roll over the words as he says them.

He is reading those words!

My heavens. The pride of this mama just swells  1,000% when he does things that might otherwise seem, well, impossible to others.

He is defying the odds.  Breaking boundaries of everybody's expectations. The maturing of this little man is truly a magical process to watch. I can't believe I get to be front and center every day. Though he can be a lot to handle at times, the rewards that spout forth from him are seemingly endless and limitless.

He is a good problem solver too. The other day we went out for a walk/run, and he stopped down at the Jamsen's Bakery/King Copper beach. There was too much snow on the rocks to throw them, so he threw snowballs instead!

Ready to launch!

He usually finds a way to have fun. I am still learning from him. Especially when it comes to animals. And how much a hug can mean. And the power of absolute silliness.

But he is also learning quickly from me too. For me to not teach him something because I don't think he'll learn is only error on my part.

For instance, I watched him set his eyeglasses on the table with the lens side down for over a year. I winced each time and silently flipped them over. But then I thought, "well, what if he just set them with the bows down himself?"

So I told him it's better for his glasses when he sets the bow side down. He remembered by the second time I told him that. It took almost a year to get him to set them down nicely instead of throwing them, so I just tolerated the lens side down, I guess. 

I settled.

But again, that is my error.

Never settle. The possibilities are endless!

Brady doesn't settle. He likes to be helpful. He likes to do things the "right way" once he knows why. He likes to put things where they go and back where he found them. I feel so fortunate to have a child like that!

So we will keep teaching each other. Patience is a virtue, and love is key. But pushing the envelope will help us change the world.

Anyone can do it.

All the power to you, my friend!

Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Through the Gray

Hi there!

I hope you are doing well!

I am busy, but busy with really good things! I will unveil one of them soon. I think you will be excited too!

And now I leave you in suspense.


Here are a couple pics for you to enjoy the almost current moment in da Harbor.

From the Lighthouse Overlook beach on Monday

From the West end of Lake Fanny Hooe on Tuesday's sunrise

It's snowy and windy out there now, but that's pretty much the norm these days. And do you see a color theme?

You guessed it.


Not my fave, but we all do our best to make it through the gray times. Luckily, there is lots to do!

If you're around next Saturday, there is something for you to do too! 

Winter Wonderfest, baby! 

Saturday, December 17th! Head to the Mariner North any time from 12-6pm for a Copper Harbor bake sale and a room full of local artists (including yours truly) hoping to sell you Christmas presents! 

I think Santa might show up sometime too. Wink.

And the most spectacular part of the day? The lighting of the Donny Kilpela Jr. Memorial Park and firework show! 6pm! Don't miss it!

I'm serious. It's got some good energy. One of my favorite winter events!

Thanks to everyone who signed back up for the blog mailing list. I know a few people had trouble accepting and they received an error message. If this was you, try clicking through on a different browser or device. If that doesn't work, forward it to me, and I can sign you up.

I want to keep you in the loop!

Well, thanks for making it to the end of another Downs by the Bay post.

Brady P. says Hi!  Muah!