August 2010

In this post I begin with a couple of ideas that concern Google. One is a time and money saving tip, and the other is just for fun.

Everyone should put 1-800-goog411 into the speed dial on your mobile phone. By calling this number, you can connect with any business within the U.S. for free. No more fees for calling information, and it’s much easier. Just dial the number, and a voice will ask you for, “City and State?” You will then be asked for the “Name or type of service?” The voice will say, “Connecting,” and the next thing you will hear is the business answering. Simple as that. I want to thank my good friend LaReign for passing this information along to me. Here is a link to the video that describes the free service:

1-800-GOOG-411: Find and connect with local businesses for free from your phon

The next Google idea I want to tell you about is interesting and possibly a bit disturbing. I’m sure most of you have “googled” your own name. But what about your image? When you go to the Google Search connection, you will notice there are a number of ways to search. Find the one that says, “Google Images,” type in your name and see what comes up. When I tried this, the first image I saw wasn’t me, and was a bit disturbing. Actually, it made me laugh out loud. Yikes!!!!!

Try it and see what you find. I hope you have better luck than I did.

Super Travel Tip

If you have read my blog before, you know I try to provide valuable travel tips when I find them. Here is one of the best I’ve ever discovered. While traveling, we all know that feeling of going into a public restroom, or worse yet, that uncomfortable feeling of sliding into the sheets of your hotel room wondering if they changed the sheets and pillow cases. Here comes the Nano Wand Sanitizer to the rescue.

This little handheld battery operated device is a must for the traveler. By passing the wand over almost any surface, you can kill up to 99.99 percent of bacteria, viruses, eggs of dust mites, fleas, and lice in 10 seconds. Incredible. Just think of all the other uses beyond those for travel. Sickrooms, offices, restaurants, virtually anywhere you feel could be a threat to your health. Here is the link:

Zadro Products

Shopping Tip from Trisha

As many of you know, my wife Trisha is a world class shopper. I don’t mean she shops constantly, but when she does, her goal is to save as much money as possible. She’s not cheap, actually, she’s a very generous person. She is simply very careful when it comes to spending our hard earned money.

Yesterday, I was in a store buying a pair of shoes. Unless you have feet my size, you don’t know how frustrating this can be. Not only did they have the shoes I wanted in my size, they had two pair. Well, Trisha noticed that the store was offering half off on the second pair. Cha-ching. When we went to the cash register, she remembered that she had recently received an email from the store offering more saving with the emailed coupon. Not having the coupon with her, she took out her smart phone, looked up her email, and showed the clerk her coupon. He jotted down the bar code number and gave her the further discount.

I was impressed and so was the clerk. Now we don’t have to print out all the coupons we might possibly use. Hope you can do the same.

New Gadgets

I’ve got a couple of very cool new gadgets for you. Have you ever been driving on a long trip, or even a short trip for that matter, and started to feel a little drowzy? I’m sure everyone who has lived to the ripe old age of retirement is smart enough to stop and get some rest. But what if it’s been a long day, you feel fine, but would like a little insurance you won’t accidently nod off.

A wonderful new little device called the Drive Alert Master fits into your ear like a hearing aid and monitors your head movement. Any slight tilt forward will send you an alert signal to keep you awake. I have a good friend who recently fell asleep for the second time while driving, so I’m pleased to tell you about this product. It’s a great and inexpensive insurance policy for you and the passengers in your vehicle. Let’s face it, nobody knows they are falling asleep when it happens. Right now this company is offering $5 off from an already reasonable price. Here is the website:

Drive Alert

The second gadget I want to tell you about is for those folks who like to make notes or record information. Whether it’s keeping track of your parking spot, making up a shopping list, or keeping track of some valuable records or ideas, this is for you. It’s a magical pen that not only records vocal or other sounds, it registers and stores your written notes. In addition, it can be attached to a computer and gives you the ability to send recordings and/or written notes to others. Lose those notes, just grab your pen and retrieve them. Wish I could remember all those songs I wrote when I was much younger.  Here is the website:


Health Alert

The recently published results of a long-term health study begun in 1996 indicates a strong corrolation between low levels of folate and a decrease in brain function. This, the study concludes, results in the increased possibility of dementia and depression. For some reason that likelyhood is even greater for women than men.

The researchers suggest that taking Vitamin B complex  supplements may increase your folate levels and be the key to opening the window to the “brain’s power and function.”  I’ve been taking this type of supplement for almost two years just to be safe. Much like chicken soup, it can’t hurt.


Great Money Saving Website

If you haven’t heard of this website,, I want you to know about it. Trisha and I have been using it for some time. Let me assure you I have no connection or financial association with them.  The only recommendations I  make on this blog are ones that we have tried and found to be beneficial.

By going to this webite, you can purchase $25 gift cards for popular restaurants for $10. There are a few restrictions such as the total meal price, but we have never found it to be a problem. Whether you are traveling to a certain city, or just going out in your local area, there are great restaurants to choose from. We do both and have saved a lot of money. Click on this link and bon appetit.

Best Deals and Discounts on the Best Local Restaurants – Save Money on Food wi

Back from Maine

Trisha and I have just returned from a wonderful trip to Maine. We were also able to sneek in visits to Boston and parts of New Hampshire. The weather, scenery, and people were fantastic. We were lucky enough to have been asked to do some book signings in the Kennebunkport area and jumped at the opportunity. A local newspaper, The Tourist News,  wrote a lengthy article about us and our book which included a picture. It really gave our visit and signings a warm reception and provided a good turnout. Our host for the visit was Brandy Hynes, owner of the well know eatery The Wayfarer in Cape Porpoise. Brandy and her brother Chris Hynes also own and operate the newly established nearby Brandy’s on the Rocks. Chris is the chef and let me tell you, if you are ever in this part of the country, don’t miss out on one of his meals. I would love to make a specific recommendation, but everything on the menu was absolutely delicious. Thanks to both of these wonderful and gracious people for a great visit.


After such a fantastic trip, rather than write about it, I thought I would simply share some of our pictures. They may not be worth a thousand words, but will hopefully convey some of the charm and quaintness of this beautiful part of the country.

John Parker                                                                                                                                                                        www.TheBestofOurLives

Great place for adults, kids and grandkids!

For anyone living near Napa, California, here is a unique and wonderful place to take your kids and grandkids, and have a ball yourself. It’s PB & J’s located at 849 Jackson in Napa. There are inflatable slides, bounce houses, birthday party facilities, and much more for kids. For the older kids and adults, there are batting cages and golf practice facilities. In addition, there are a number of professional instructors available for those who take their games seriously.

That’s PB & J’s                                                                                                                                              


                   At the recent celebration to honor my father’s life, the most frequent comment heard was about his positive attitude and positive approach to life. He was not a person given to anger, but rather someone who sought to find the best in himself and others. Humor was his cure all.

          I’m very lucky to have had him as my father, and I’m also fortunate that my wife Trisha  has this same quality. Her every minute is spent with an energetic and positive approach to life. At first meeting, I’m sure some may think it is some sort of faux personality. It’s not.

          I’ve written before about a positive attitude and it’s many benefits on one’s life. From a longevity standpoint, barring some unforeseen health crisis, we now know having a positive attitude toward our retired lives can add nearly 8 years to our life. This week, having spent a lot of time in reflection, I have been reviewing some of my favorite quotes about attitude. Here is one I want to share with you. If you’ve seen it before, another reading may still be inspiring. It was for me.


by Charles R. Swindoll

     Words can never adequately convey the incredible impact of our attitude toward life. The longer I live the more convinced I become that life is 10 percent what happens to us and 90 percent how we respond to it.

     I believe the single most significant decision I can make on a day-to-day basis is my choice of attitude. It is more important than my past, my education, my bankroll, my successes or failures, fame or pain, what other people think of me or say about me, my circumstances, or my position. Attitude keeps me going or cripples my progress. It alone fuels my fire or assaults my hope. When my attitudes are right, there’s no barrier too high, no valley too deep, no dream too extreme, no challenge too great for me.

Or as the great philosopher Jimmy Buffet put it:

   It’s those changes in latitudes, changes in attitudes     Nothing remains quite the same 

   With all of our running and all of our cunning, if we couldn’t laugh, we would all go insane

Life is indeed difficult. A periodic assessment of one’s attitude may be quite beneficial.

Media Alerts

Meet the “Batting Stance Kid.”

Grandson Jack Reed Parker was recently featured on both the Dodger pregame show and the Jr. Dodgers program for his ability to imitate Major League baseball player’s batting stances and swings. Not bad for a four-year-old. 

Way to go Jack.

Follow the link and then click on “Meet the batting stance guy.”

Jr. Dodgers Show | Jr. Dodger Broadcasters interview Andre Ethier – Video | do


       On a travel note, Trisha and I have been invited to Kennebunkport, Maine for a number of book signings this week. Should be a lot of fun and we look forward to the beautiful locale and meeting lots of new people.

Bye for now.