How We Did It

2017-03-29T12:24:51+00:00Courage, Family, Inspiring Life Adventures, Live brave, Travel|

I remember it well. It stunk. It was like my teens were on a raft whose rope had gotten untied. They were drifting away and I was back on the dock. It wasn’t easy to talk anymore, and they were distracted by the new waters. Time was passing and so were our chances to enjoy an open, fun, and adventurous family life. I wanted none of it, so I figured something out. It worked. What I figured out switched up the vibe. We gradually connected again and the normal blow-ups weren’t deal breakers, they were something to talk through, willingly, together. Slammed doors and dead-end conversations were the exception, not the rule. People wonder how our family of four backpacked around the world living in bunk rooms, bungalows, homestays and hostels without wanting to trade each other in for a Diet Coke. For nine months, we lived in small, [...]

Winter Warm-Up for the Homeless

2017-02-18T15:14:42+00:00Courage, Family, Give big, Inspiring Life Adventures, Volunteer|

I have never had to live on the streets and I hope I never have to. I have heard the statistics and know how close many of us are to having that be a reality. We often think it could never happen to us, but yet, we know it can happen, it is happening, and does happen every single day. This past winter was a brutal one in Portland. We are known for our rain, but not for freezing conditions for weeks on end. When the snow hit, no one was really prepared. Highways became parking lots, trees fell, power went out and those living in tents under the bridges desperately searched for warm places to sleep. There were at least four reported deaths due to hypothermia. I am sure that was a low number. We decided to take action and help in any way we can. Our solution [...]

Cleaning the Condor Enclosure

2017-01-23T19:35:53+00:00Family, Give big, Inspiring Life Adventures, Live brave, Travel, Volunteer|

We had just finished a day of cleaning an Andean Condor enclosure in the Sacred Valley outside of Cusco, Peru. Our muscles were sore, hands blistered, and our clothes dirty, but we were happy. We felt honored to have spent the day helping with the unglamorous work of picking up large and small stones (trying not to mistake them for the condor poop) and other items that could prove fatal to these majestic birds. The work was made more difficult because we only had one rusted out wheelbarrow (with a few holes and a flat tire), a dilapidated rake and shovel, no gloves and a few well-used nylon bags to collect and carry the heavy stones.  At the end of the day, we wanted to do more than manual labor. When we asked what else they really needed, they told us they could use some new equipment, so we [...]

Life Giving Blood

2016-10-24T09:43:18+00:00Courage, Give big, Inspiring Life Adventures, Volunteer|

I love giving blood. It speaks to my “love languages”: acts of kindness and service to others. And so, I have been donating blood since college. There were some years I would give every eight weeks. Other years, I didn’t pay attention, and didn’t give much or any at all. Now that I am 68, it’s more important to me than ever. Before our recent trip to the Dominican Republic, I was thinking about how much blood I had donated over the years—I thought it was about 140 pints in almost 50 years, but I wasn’t sure. I also remembered that, with the recent outbreak of the Zika Virus, I would be excluded from giving blood for one year. The day before I was to leave, I received a timely call from the Red Cross. They informed me there was a severe shortage of O blood, and asked if I [...]

A Day in Portofino: A Dream Come True

2016-10-24T09:43:35+00:00Family, Have fun, Inspiring Life Adventures, Travel|

Years ago, Jody and I were in Idaho meeting my oldest daughter’s future in-laws. We were all having lunch together, and on the wall next to us was a picture of the bay and coastline in Portofino, Italy. It was incredible! I looked at Jody, commented on how beautiful it was, and promised her that someday I would take her there. Fast forward a few years, and we’re halfway into our trip around the world with our two youngest children, Allison and Riley. Jody’s parents, Jan and Lou, had joined us in Madrid, Spain at this point for a six-week trip through Europe. We had just spent a week in Tuscany, which was on my bucket list. Tuscany was everything you would expect—we made so many great memories, including all six of us hitchhiking to town in the rain! Our next destination was Genoa in northern Italy. We were headed [...]

SPANA – Hero to the Working Animals

2016-10-24T09:44:50+00:00Family, Give big, Inspiring Life Adventures, Volunteer|

We arrived in Marrakesh, Morocco, and the buzz and energy of the city hit us immediately.  There were cars, scooters, horse carriages, donkeys and many other animals jamming the roads.  It is something you don’t see in the U.S. Your senses come alive with the colors, smells, sights and sounds of the city. So much activity makes it easy to miss things. We did notice, while dodging horse carriages, that many of the horses had green bands wrapped around one of their legs. We wondered what the green bands meant. What do you think? We found out a few days later. With so many people, animals and cars fighting for the same space on a road, there are bound to be accidents. What happens when working animals are injured in Marrakesh? Here’s where the story gets remarkable. A woman and her daughter literally changed the world for working animals and [...]

The Courage Vibe

3519 NE 15th Ave #206, Portland, OR 97212

Phone: 888.651.5580