Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Haiti - Compassion International

There are so many organizations that are doing relief work in Haiti right now. Some are secular and some are Christian and some are reputable and some are scams.

We as givers have lots of choices in this area and our family is choosing Compassion International for four reasons.

1. We have supported a child in Honduras for several years and I feel confident that Compassion International is a solid organization. A very small percentage of donations goes to administrative costs. They are not a overnight scam organization.
2. Compassion is a first responder with staff on the ground laready in Haiti. They have contacts and working relationships with local churches and organizations.
3. Compassion works with children. If you know me you know this is a must.
4. IN JESUS' NAME: Compassion International does not accept government funds which could at times restrict our ability to meet the physical and spiritual needs of children in Jesus' name. Because of this Compassion International's primary financial support comes from individual donors.

You can donate to Haiti earthquake relief by going here

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


I recently crossed over the 40 milestone in my life. Brendan also turned 4 in December and now my father-in-law John Huene is turning 80 this month. So all these neatly aligned milestones got me thinking about the big differences between four, forty and eighty. Here are a few I observed.

Teeth: Brendan wants to loose his, I'm trying to keep mine and John has already lost his!

Drinks: Brendan loves Kool-aid, I love Dr. Pepper (non-diet) John loves Ensure

Naps: Brendan doesn't want take them, I wish I could take them and John can't help but take them

Books: Brendan likes large pictures, I like large novels and John likes large print

Favorite actor: Brendan likes Spider Man, I like Harrison Ford and John likes John Wayne

Favorite food: Brendan likes candy, I like shrimp, John likes his puréed

Clothes: Brendan likes shirts with dinosaurs on them, I like jeans and a hoodie and John likes Velvet

TV: Brendan likes Nick Jr., I like ESPN and and John likes the Hallmark Channel

Medicine: Brendan takes some when he is sick, I take a pill a day and John has the pharmacy on speed dial

Hair: Brendan hates getting his washed, I hate the dry scalp and John is just glad he has hair

Christmas: Brendan loves the presents, I love the down time and John loves when all the grandkids go home

Memory: Brendan remembers everything, I cant remember what I had for breakfast and John has forgotten more than the rest of us know

Sex: Not going there

Music: Brendan likes Go fish, I like 80s and 90s music and John likes Perry Como

Offspring: Brendan - playbuddies, Me - five boys, really? John - too many to remember their names

All kidding aside I have no issues hitting forty and I hope I can be half as healthy and active as John when I hit 80! He is a good man and a great father-in-law and grandpa!

Thursday, January 07, 2010

The Hawk is in

One of my baseball heroes growing up was Andre Dawson. He was a class act who played with the Cubs during the prime of his career. After many years on the "list" he was finally voted in this year as the true hall of famer is he. I am a big hall of fame watcher. It's one of my side hobbies. The baseball hall of fame is very intriguing for several reasons. It is a very political process, the Veteran's committee is a mess (they have yet to elect a player) but most of all the steroids era and the hall of fame ar about to collide and something has got to give. This hall of fame could be the only hall of fame where all the players that own the major records are prevented from entering (think Bonds, Rose and Clemens). I think eventually this will have to be rectified. Here are my predictions for the coming years. If you are not a HOF follower and do not get into these discussions then sorry, just stop reading here:

Class of 2011

Jeff Bagwell, Rafael Palmeiro*, Larry Walker, Juan Gonzalez*, John Franco

Class of 2012:

Bernie Williams

Class of 2013:

Barry Bonds*, Roger Clemens*, Craig Biggio, Curt Schilling, Sammy Sosa*, Mike Piazza, David Wells,

Class of 2014: Eric Gagne*, Tom Glavine, Jeff Kent, Greg Maddux, Mike Mussina, Frank Thomas, Jim Edmonds

Class of 2015: Randy Johnson

Remaining Holdovers: Bert Blyleven, Roberto Alomar, Jack Morris, Barry Larkin, Lee Smith, Edgar Martinez, Tim Raines, Mark McGwire*, Alan Trammell, Fred McGriff, Don Mattingly, Dave Parker, Dale Murphy, Harold Baines

Blue – Will get elected eventually by the BBWAA. Some will have to wait until the steroids dust settles.

Red - First year electors to the BBHOF

Highlighted – outside chance of getting elected by the BBWAA or the Veteran’s Committee (assuming the Veteran’s Committee changes its rules eventually).

*Players who have had careers tainted by the use of steroids

Note - I only included players who had a chance of even getting the 5% of votes required to remain on the ballot from year to year. A couple players such as Gagne and Williams may not even make that cut. 2013 will be a very interesting and telling year. What happens that year will determine what happens in many years to come for the steroid tainted players. Other players still currently playing ball will also be affected, such as Alex Rodriguez and Manny Ramirez.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

My favorite Christmas gift!

So my favorite Christmas gift this year was a safe family after a near tragic accident on our way home from an Illinois visit with family. We were only going about 35 mph because of bad snow when we entered a white out and suddenly we saw a load of tailights in front of us.  There was no choice for us but to go into the ditch. We missed several other cars in the ditch and almost flipped the van. Fortunately the van went up on two wheels and then hit and embankment and went back right side up. The entire time we were sliding Patsy and I were both asking Jesus for protection (out loud). This made an impression on Blake and Tanner!

The driver's side took the brunt of the damage. This photo was taken before we were towed out.

Here is the newspaper report of the day (the policeman who helped us told us there were 40 cars in the slide-off)

20 vehicle crash cleared at I-94 near Van Buren/Berrien county line
By Kathy Jessup | Kalamazoo Gazette -
January 01, 2010, 6:20PM

UPDATE — The vehicles involved in a chain-reaction accident that may have involved up to 20 vehicles has been cleared from eastbound Interstate-94 near the Van Buren/Berrien county line before 6 p.m. Friday, police officials reported.

VAN BUREN COUNTY — As many as 20 vehicles may be involved in a chain-reaction, slide-and-crash snarl on eastbound Interstate-94 near the Van Buren/Berrien county line Friay afternoon.

Early reports from officials at the Michigan State Police post in Paw Paw said they know of no fatalities or serious injuries. Traffic, however, is slow as police and tow trucks untangle vehicles.

State police patrolling southwest Michigan roads are reporting varying visibility across the area as lake-effect snow bands create near white-out conditions in some locations, while other areas are reported clear.

Streets and highways are reported to be snow-covered and slippery throughout the area today and law enforcement is encouraging drivers to slow down and leave adequate stopping distance between vehicles.

After we came to a stop, firs thing we did was turn around and see if the boys were OK. They were, and all had their seatbelts on. Brendan was the first to comment of the event by saying "I didn't like that."