Lessons learned from Spicoli

Jeff Spicoli: Well, I’ll tell you Stu, I did battle some humongous waves! But you know, just like I told the guy on ABC, “Danger is my business!” 
Isn’t that what we all want…. For “danger” to be our business. Why do we love James Bond (007) movies, or movies like Braveheart? Because we love the hero who’s lives on the edge of danger.   As men we have to find our danger. Something that makes us feel like we have conquered the outdoors. I was fortunate enough to go water water rafting this past weekend with two of my threedaughterdad daughters. What an adventure we all got to share. Working together as a family, paddling down a river and navigating the Rapids. As a group we were able to say “Danger is my business”.  

  

  

L.L. Bean Guide to the Outdoors

I picked this book up at a used book sale for a dollar. I am a fan of L.L. Bean clothes but this book shared so much more than what I’m used to seeing from L.L. Bean.   

Besides the practical guide to outdoor skills, it also shares the story of how the company was started by Mr. L.L. Bean. 

His desire to create a hunting boot that would keep his feet dry turned into a business built in only selling outdoor products that were field tested by the avid outdoors men and women who worked for him. There are several stories of manufacturers that were turned down to be a part of the  L.L. Bean product catalogue but with suggestions for improvement from the company, the products became better and they were added.  

This book was published in 1981 and is a combination of the original Outdoor Guide published by L.L. Bean along with the stories behind he company. I’m sure there are resources for used copies of this like I found. 

Of course its available on Amazon

Not bad for a guy who only finished the 8th grade. 

Fiberglass reinforced PVC Bow

Backyard Bowyer has all the pertinent details for making this bow. This is by far my favorite one I’ve made so far…. And the most powerful and accurate.  I used 1″ PVC to give it a little more power. But the basic of the fiberglass rod reinforcement are the same. The backyard bowyer video show a no heat option. I tapered the limbs and added the decorative ends with use of a heat gun and a vice. If you need to know how to do it, send me a message and I’ll provide info on how I did it. I also used a 60 grit sand paper, along with a screwdriver to scuff up the PVC to help the stain provide a wood grain look. The arrow rest is a 1″ piece if PVC made to snap on to any bow, but I used superglue to secure it in place. Again, send me a message for details on how to make it. 

So with the previous bows build, I have had success making functional bows from PVC. My next step was to make one that was stronger and quicker than the prevoius builds. I found this video on the Backyard Bowyer youtube chanel. He outlines the way to build a fiberglass reinforced bow. I used the measurements he gives on how to cut the rods and secure them with duct tape, but I added the tapering and decorative ends for a better look. I also used some 

Supply List:
Fiberglass Rods

    
    
 

Shooting video:

PVC BOWS-

This is a fun and easy project that takes very little money.  It does require some patience, but in the end you have a pretty cool and effective bow that you could use for target practice or light hunting.  I’m not going to get into the details of the build because there is an expert on the subject who has a website and youtube channel, The Backyard Bowyer. He also has a book available on Amazon. The best option is to go to his website,and from there you can access his videos as well as see all of the info he has available.  There are so many cool designs and with some creativity, you can make pretty much any style of bow you want.  I use paracord for my bow strings. With a little paint, they can be customized any way you want.   I am going to highlight a few of the ones I built and also videos of me shooting them.

5′ Longbow: 
   
Traditional Horsebow:  

Snakey Recurve:  

  
 

DIY Magnetic Pistol Holder

Simple and inexpensive magnetic holder. Instead of laying your guns in the top of your gun cabinet, this simple DIY will give you an easy and accesable storage option for your handguns.  For me, I allows me to store my pistols upright allowing for easy access and taking up less room in the cabinet. 

  
   I also made one for the side of my gun safe to hold knives. I followed an easy guide with two magnets, a paint stir stick and some electrical tape.  

Here is one link to the DIY site that requires shrink tube.

http://tacticalintelligence.net/blog/how-to-make-a-magnetic-holster.htm

 I used super glue to glue the magnets to the paint stick and electrical tape to wrap it. 

Of course they can be bought on Amazon. Click here

Directions?  

Have you ever been lost, Took a wrong turn, but yet knew you were close to where you needed to be?  So you just keep driving, knowing you’ll get there. All the while your wife says “maybe you should pull in the gas station and ask directions!”  

There is it…. The words you don’t want to hear. “I’m a man, I know where I’m going. “. I don’t need help or directions. 

Well maybe we do need directions. More in the sense that as men we don’t want to let anybody down. Month after month, there are always going to be more bills that need to get paid. You want to be a good provider. You want to make your wife, kids parents proud. You want to be strong for everybody. Do you ever feel like you’re the glue holding everyone else’s lives together? Then is it really any wonder you’re so exhausted?

Of course, if you’re like most guys, 

Despair Repair
Have you ever played so hard that you physically had nothing left in the tank?
Sometimes you collapse on the bench press of your life: weakened, worn out, completely exhausted. But even if you’re already maxed out, there’s no guarantee more stress isn’t still coming. Do you ever feel like that? Like that constant weight of responsibility is always there? That you always have to be there for your family and your friends? Believe me, I know just how that feels.

Of course, if you’re like most guys, you’ll never ask for help. You just keep adding more and more weight to that bar, again and again. You keep lifting it, too, but you’re sore. It hurts, but you don’t tell anybody. Sometimes you even wonder why you’re carrying all this weight for all these other people. It’s easy to start slipping into a negative mindset. 

Many of us slip into that same mode when we start feeling overwhelmed. We may not say it out loud, but what our actions are communicating to others is: “I’m not letting you in. I won’t share what’s going on with me. Besides, even if I tried, you wouldn’t understand.”
That’s why we refuse to ask for directions! We don’t want to have to tell anyone we need help! I’m convinced the reason we do this is that most of us want to be the hero, the main character, the center of the story that we’re telling about ourselves. We want to make everything about us…instead of about God.
But here’s a truth you can grab hold of today: If you’ll let your need drive you to God, God will meet your deepest needs.   

His Spirit will always lead us to confession, to changing direction, to realigning with his Word, to a fresh start, to grace. Admit it. You need him. Tell him so. You may be surprised how he responds.
**coming soon… The need for a “Band of Brothers”

The email Awakening!

I got an email today from one of my best customers and it was like cold water being thrown on me.  The email consisted of seven words and are as follows:

Too busy to even talk these days?

  
 Hmmmm…  With so many ways to communicate, I had responded to his voicemail with an email or maybe a text, but either way the lack of spoken words was the issue. Of course his email prompted an immediate phone call.  I started to evaluate how I respond to my customers and potential customers. Was the smartphones ability to text, email, or tweet taking away from what is so important in the world of sales. Relationship!!!  People do business with people. 

 As the pic above says, it’s a matter of priority. Don’t get caught I the trap of letting your media communicate with your customer. So much emotion gets lost or mis-interpreted in emails or text. Actually speaking with people is far better any day. Evaluate your method of communication and see if you need anyone in your life (work, family, friends, God)  need to send you the same email I got. 
  

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished!

Wether your a hunter like me, or you can find some other reason to get in the woods (camping, bird watching). Whatever your reason, just find an opportunity to unplug and get in the woods.  Here are a couple of quotes that will help in explaining better than I can:

We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature – trees, flowers, grass – grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence… We need silence to be able to touch souls. Mother Teresa

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished. Lao Tzu

The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple beauty of nature. Anne Frank

Here is a video of a recent trip to the woods. If this does make you feel a little less stressed, not sure what will. 

  

How to create an environment of CALM!!

How often do you loose it with your kids and yell.  Unfortunaltely, I do it more that I’d like.  So to continue on the same path as my recent blog on patience, but this time talk about what our kids hear when we do that vs. what we are trying to say.  If you really want to have an eye opening experience, ask you kids what they think when you yell.  You Probably wont like the answer  I think that we communicate so much better at work because we have to plan out our answers. How many times have you written and re-written an email so you can convey the exact message with the right amount of emotion but ensuring your point is made?  Everyday?  Maybe we need to take some time before we answer our kids/wife at home. If you have teenagers, (as I do) you may be thinking….IMPOSSIBLE!!!  But it’s all about practice.  As we were all taught, practice makes perfect. Do we practice patience. Interestingly enough, this came up in our adult Sunday school class and the term “manage” was used as it relates to anger. My immediate thought was we trade out the term patience for anger because it sounds better. We prefer “I lost my patience” vs. I got angry. Second, I liked the term manage. Just like my point earlier, practice, we can use the term manage as well. If we want to be honest, we would say “I need to do a bette job managing my anger”.  

  
These are things I think about because I need to be thinking about them. If I can put it in words and in practice I will do a better job as a dad and husband with patience. Let me know your thoughts. Comment with suggestion, thoughts etc.