Category Inspiration

Why Defend Liberty T-Shirt?

Why did I make the Defend Liberty t-shirt?

On the 4th of July my wife usually lets our kids paint some t-shirts to celebrate the holiday.  This year, I decided to join in and tried to think of a design that would represent my love of country and dedication to defending the values that make the U.S. great.  Along that train of thought, I came up with the logo on this shirt.

Made from freezer paper, an exacto knife, a sponge brush, and black paint.

Made from freezer paper, an exacto knife, a sponge brush, and black paint.

I used to design my original idea, printed it out, placed the print out under some freezer paper, traced it with an exacto knife, ironed the stencil into place on the t-shirt, painted it with a sponge brush, and then smiled at the result...

Who Inspires You?


It’s important to surround yourself with people who lift you up and inspire you.

Last week I found myself unexpectedly packing up our family car and heading West due to a cancelled flight.  I feel I need to explain why my blog posts will now be delayed for a few weeks.

We had plans to visit family and friends and those plans suddenly turned into the kind of road trip that my wife and I had been dreaming of.  We crossed through amazing country in West Virginia, plains I never knew existed in Kansas, dealt with the threat of a tornado in Colorado, and saw amazing beauty in Wyoming when we passed some buffalo.  We were on the road for three and 1/2 days with our young kids in tow.  A lot of friends said we were crazy and we even had our doubts...

Believe You Can Build Your Ship

I was persuaded to believe in myself and my big fat dreams today. I believe everyone has some kind of greatness waiting to be unleashed. Others might call your dreams stupid, may think you are unwise, and some may even try to hurt you because you follow your dreams. But I don’t think we should ever let others steal that spark of excitement that comes from our biggest dreams – even if those dreams may scare us.

I was driving to work today and purposely turned off the radio so I could mull over some ideas and hopes for the future. These are the big ideas that scare me. They scare me because not only would failure have an impact on me, it would affect the family I love so dearly...

Kupuna – An Interactive Documentary About the Bridge to the Past of Laie, Hawaii

Nathaniel Hansen: professor, director, producer, and friend. Kupuna

Nathaniel Hansen: professor, director, producer, and friend.

A close friend of mine, Nathaniel Hansen, is working on a documentary focused on the elderly Polynesian of my home town of Laie, Hawaii.  Nathaniel has done previous work focusing on the bridge the elderly create to the past in any community.  Now he’s taking that concept and placing it over the unique and amazing place I grew up on the North Shore of Oahu in Hawaii.  The title of the documentary is Kūpuna and it is a story that is begging to be told, but can only be told through the voices of those who have lived through so much of the 20th century and into the new millennium.

In Nathaniel’s own words, Kūpuna is an interactive documentary portrait of Laie, a small Hawaiian town on the island of O’ahu...

Unrepressed: Why We Love Kids and Lead Singers

I’m reading The Element by Ken Robinson these days. This is another great book and I will be dedicating a number of future posts to it once I’m done reading it.  However, I got into a great conversation with one of my co-workers about the unrepressed nature of children and wanted to share it because I think it will resonate with a lot of people. This will definitely require more in depth writing later.

In the book Robinson notes that children have an “unrepressed” type of behavior.  They don’t care if they do or get something wrong – they are not driven by fear like adults.  Somehow as adults we lose that sense of freedom; we gradually develop a fear of failure and that child-like unrepressed feeling is taken from us.  We are too often afraid of being wrong...

Inspiration For Your Elusive Creative Genius

Have you ever struggled to do something creative?  Have you created something amazing and ever wondered if you could do it again?  How much of what we create is purely a result of our own effort and abilities or is creativity somehow inspired from some elusive source?  Here’s some inspiration for your elusive creative genius.

inspiration for your elusive creative genuis

Elizabeth Gilbert

Elizabeth Gilbert wrote Eat, Pray, Love and it became ridiculously popular.  She discusses the struggle great creative minds have maintaining their sanity and control over the creative process.  She reaches back in time to a mechanism used by the Greeks and Romans.  This mechanism helps maneuver the creative process without putting so much of the blame/credit/responsibility on the artist...

Blowing On Dying Coals

After many life changing events, to include the passing of my father, the birth of a child, and moving my family not only across the Pacific Ocean but across the United States, I’ve remembered this blog.  Like a fire that has some dying coals still glowing, I feel like breathing some life back into this project.

dying coals

Dying coals

I’ve spent a good part of the past year or more studying leadership and becoming familiar with a range of principles I’ve found extremely interesting and valuable.  Next few posts will be about principles I’ve found valuable in Jim Collins’ book Good to Great and making the connections between those principles and other aspects of life.