July 13th, 2023 

“ Dobroho ranku”, or “Good Morning!” in Ukrainian, an Eastern Slavic language spoken mainly in Ukraine.  I have decided that the UJT will remain focused on Ukraine until we can all rejoice at the end of hostilities.  It has been 497 days since Russia invaded Ukraine.

I am experiencing the joy of Grandpa-hood! All my girls are here – my wife, my daughter, my eldest granddaughter, and my youngest granddaughter!!! Life is good.

This week I learned some stuff:

    • Oh, Joy! Oh, Joy! One of life’’s small pleasures is back!!! Some friends of mine, back in the dark ages in Va, got me addicted to Orange Julius drinks. We have had an “Orange Julius store” at the mall forever but they didn’t use to carry Orange Julius (I know, right! I asked the lady, “How can you be an Orange Julius store without Orange Julius??” She just gave me her best minimum wage shrug and got over my indignation immediately. ). Anyway, I was there on another errand and found out that now they do have Orange Julius! I did my own sort of old guy end zone dance while she whipped up my first Julius in maybe 2 decades! I even got my youngest Granddaughter her first one.  Now, if I could just find a source for those wonderful 5-cent Banana Popsicles they used to sell at High’s Ice Cream in Va Beach!!!
    • I am continuing to learn at Cardiac Rehab! I am learning that exercising is not fatal and that not exercising is. I am also discovering how much sodium is included in the food we eat. I also learned that almost all Americans eat way too much sodium. The max should be ~2500mg/day (except for bad heart guys ~1500mg/day). I learned that Whole Wheat Sourdough bread is better for you than multi-grain.
    • July 13th is the 194th day of 2023. Just 171 days till Christmas.  On this day in 1930, the inaugural FIFA World Cup begins in Uruguay; Today in 1955, the Dartmouth workshop is the first conference on artificial intelligence; Today in 1973,  Alexander Butterfield reveals the existence of a secret Oval Office taping system to investigators for the Senate Watergate Committee;  the Live Aid benefit concert takes place in London and Philadelphia, as well as other venues such as Moscow and Sydney today in 1985; Bob Crane, (AKA Col Hogan) American actor was born today in 1928; Paul Prudhomme, American chef, and the author was born today in 1940 on the same day as Patrick Stewart, (AKA Capitan Picard) English actor, director, and producer; Today was Harrison Ford, (AKA Indiana Johns or Hans Solo) American actor and producer’s birthday in 1942. the same day, as Roger McGuinn, American singer-songwriter and guitarist with the Byrds); On this day in 1946, Cheech Marin, an American actor and comedian was born; George Nelson, an American astronomer and astronaut was born in 1950; Tom Kenny, an American voice actor (SpongeBob Squarepants)and screenwriter was born today in 1962; Today is also Kenny Johnson, American actor, producer, and model’s birthday in 1963; Young Man Afraid of His Horses, Sioux tribal chief passed away today in 1893; Today in 1974, Patrick Blackett, Baron Blackett, English physicist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate passed away; Red Buttons, American actor; Finally, we lost Red Buttons, American actor in 2006. 

This week’s Website Update:

    • A New Vocabulary Quiz !! Yeah!!
    • Week two for our Musical Trivia Quiz
    • This week I made a special dinner for our 50th Anniversary- Chateaubriand, with a Mushroom Port Wine Reduction sauce, Scalloped Potatoes, Corn, and of course, Champagne and cake. It was a nice dinner but in doing it I found another !!#$$ typo in the reduction sauce recipe (I forgot to include the beef broth in the instructions)! All fixed now and reposted in case you would like to try it. Oh and speaking of typos, I swear Spell Check owns this one. It is not Toby Gray!!! Dobie Gray did “Drift Away”!
    • The Home Page quote for this week is from, Margret Thatcher,  “If you want something said, ask a man. If  you want something done ask a woman.

Writing, Ceramics, Bonsai Trees, Stained Glass, and Painting Update:

    • I think I finally have the stained glass window design that I want! I am going to get my granddaughter to help me to do the template and order the glass.
    • I am continuing my streak of slacking off on the paper edits of Grandpa Stories. I just haven’t carved out any time for more chapters. This might be becoming a habit! 


    • I learned so much during my time in the Navy. I learned that life could be grand anywhere you got to live it. I learned to admit when I was wrong. I learned about loving someone with all my might. I learned how much it hurt when that love didn’t work out. I got to see “the world” or at least a pretty good bit of it. I saw enough to know I wanted to see more. I am grateful to the people who helped me grow up in the Navy. I came into the gig with a pretty good sense of right and wrong but while in the Navy I started to learn patience and to believe in myself. I will always consider the day I got out of the Navy one of the happiest sad days in my life. As shipmates, we made such great and true friends but even as we told each other we would keep in touch when we were leaving, I kind of knew there was very little chance I would see them again. I have always been glad I enjoyed our friendships when we were together. I still smile when I tell our stories.  I hope my shipmates enjoyed every bit of the good fortune that I did when I got out.

Music Update: 

Did you all enjoy last week’s nostalgic trip down 1973’s memory lane? I hope so. Here is a new batch of music for you to try out.  Enjoy.

This week’s UJT Radio Program:

    • Doc Watson — I  Was a Stranger — I found out about Doc when I was in the Navy. Just a wonderful finger-picker. This one even has some yodeling for you.
    • Phoebe Snow — No Show Tonight  —  I just love Phoebe’s music. “ Sarah Heartburn ..” This song is from her self-titled debut which was released in 1974.
    • James Taylor — Shower the People   — Just another wonderful song from one of my favorites. This is from his album, “In the Pocket” released in 1976.
    • Led Zeppelin —  Your Time is Gonna Come — These guys still blow me away today! They were just so good!!!  This one is from their amazing self-titled debut album released in 1969.
    • UB40 — Red Red Wine — Not many know that this song was composed by Neil Diamond. It’s just a happy song done well.  This song is from their “Labour of Love”  album released in 1983. 
    • The Derek Trucks Band — This Sky (Album Version) — I love the way this man plays his instrument!  This one comes from their “Songlines” album released in 2006.

That’s it… Do the best you can; Laugh every chance you get; Always remember… The best is yet to come! As always, thank you for being my friend!