Hello Junenders, and happy Friday!

Welcome back to the Good To Grow site, and thanks for being here.

It’s Friday, and it’s summertime. And we’re on the verge of a weekend filled with possibilities. Ahhhh, that’s good enough for me.

Let’s get our Friday Festivities started by saying hi to our Panel of Experts. Hi Everyone!


“Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiii Liza!”

Look how cute you are! From left to right, that’s Andy Williams, Tim Thackaberry, EZ Ed Johnson, Dottie Correll and Lewis Casey. If you’d like to know more about them, please click here.

Because it’s summertime, and our beloved Experts are busy with their families and their work and their vacations, they’re going to have the next two Fridays off of this blog. So today, before they go, I wanted to ask them about goals they hope to achieve. Here’s this week’s question:

Q. Please share with us one goal you’re working on to improve your life.

I expanded the question to include goals that were beyond personal as well. Let’s see what the Experts had to say.

Expert Andy, you’re up first as usual:

A. I figure I need to retire in order to totally improve my life.  This may seem pompous or materialistic to some, but the reality is that if I am retired I can pursue my REAL GOAL of coaching kids in sports and life.  I have been coaching young kids since I was 11 years old at the Shelbyville, IN Kenneth J. Self Boys Club.  I have always enjoyed it.  At 11 I tried to be Bobby Knight, like every other red-blooded Hoosier who coached anything.  At 40-something, I want to help kids succeed in life through learning the skills it takes to improve in sports and in life through teamwork.  A few weeks ago my neighbor asked me if I would help him coach 5 and 6 year old flag football….in the 100+ degree heat….in June….in a sport I’ve never even played.  Since I am a big fan and mentor to his 5 year old son, I decided to do it.  Once again it was another one of my life’s most rewarding experiences.  I truly enjoy seeing the improvement from the first practice to the last game of the year.  I love to see kids improve and put what you have told them to practice and effort and succeed.  It is an awesome feeling.

In summary, I want to retire so I can make a bigger difference in the lives of kids.

A. I am trying to take life as it comes, and not to obsess over things I cannot control. It feels as if this is the root cause of so many situations that make me a little nuts, and that I’d be much happier overall if I could learn to let some things go. A corollary to that is to try and accept people for who they are.

It’s an ongoing effort, as it does not come easily to me.

A. I would like to be more patient. I would like to spend more time with my camera, patiently positioning shots. I’d like to be more forgiving, less judgmental. I want to listen more, read more, fret less. I’d like to find a prayer.

A. Goals are rejuvenating, challenging and give purpose to one’s life. Shortly after moving to Sedona, I realized that a serious need existed for persons that were physically challenged. I was fortunate to be elected to the Board of the” Friends of the Forest,” (this is the volunteer organization affiliated with the Forest Service). This provided me with a perfect venue to present my “Project” to achieve my goal. My goal is simply expressed in the following mission statement:

“Our mission is to provide a Guide/Directory of natural venues for physically challenged people; outlining location, available facilities, fees, if any, and environmental conditions. Our goal is to enhance awareness of residents and visitors to greater Sedona of the areas natural wonders, and to help them determine if the venue is appropriate for their interests and abilities.”

Physically challenged people may be defined as wheelchair persons, folks with canes, motorized scooters, hearing impaired, blind, or anyone physically impeded and even includes folks pushing little children in strollers; they too have difficulty moving around. More importantly, they are folks that just want to be able to be out in nature, hear the birds and take a deep breath and smell the pines, experience the archeological wonders of past cultures and be one with the Forest primeval.

Thankfully, my presentation to both the Forest Service and the Friends of the Forest was enthusiastically accepted and approved by both entities.

Now the hard work begins. It isn’t just a matter of the collections of venues and listing them in a brochure. We, (two other Friends of the Forest Board members have joined me, so we now are an official committee of 3), must visit every venue we list in the Directory and make sure it has the proper facilities – even measuring the degree of inclines, parking, views, accessibility of trails, etc. This will be an on-going project that will require a lot of effort but so worthwhile. There is nothing in Sedona with this information – not the Chamber of Commerce, Forest Service or any other entity.

As usual, in my excitement, I got the “cart before the horse!” Many of the trails are not in prime shape. They are accessible for some folks but not for the physically challenged. That is another goal – to make as many trails and venues as possible, accessible. Our committee has picked a few that will not require huge expenditures and do have the proper facilities. We are starting with maintaining one large trail that meets these criteria, while at the same time trying to discover where we can obtain and apply for grants to pay for some of the trail rehabilitation work and also for the publishing of the Guide/Directory.

Due to all the Forest fires, the Forest Service is short on money -every FS function is having their budgets cut to pay for the fires nationally. The Government doesn’t provide extra monies for “Fire Fighting” – it just comes out of the existing budget.

Here, I must give a big “Shout Out” and Thank You to the Friends of the Forest volunteers who number in the hundreds in Sedona and who take on the responsibility of so many tasks in conjunction with the Forest Service, as; aiding with the maintenance of the trails and archeological sites, removing graffiti, maintenance of riparian areas, staffing look-out fire towers, offering free classes on many subjects that pertain to the forest areas, staffing the Visitor Centers and on and on.

They are an amazing group of selfless, hard working people! Their participation will be a big part of my mission being fulfilled.

The great part of this entire goal is that everyone is so “Gung Ho!” and expressed, “This is long overdue!”

I am thrilled with the joyful acceptance and though it is a long road ahead – I do see a “Brilliant Light” at the end of the tunnel!

P.S. My gratitude to you, if you read thru all of this! I welcome any and all suggestions and support of any kind!!! Cheers, Dottie


A. Well for one thing I would like to live another day,

As you know or not I make my living as a Safety Professional working for the Great City of Albuquerque.

Always on the alert, ready to leap into action stopping  unsafe actions, events, or operation of equipment  that may jeopardize, risk, threaten, imperil, or endanger the Safety and Well-being of City of Albuquerque worker or its fine citizens.

I think I do a pretty good job maybe not perfect but not bad.

This morning as Michael and I were walking to our city vehicle parked in one of the downtown parking structures, we came to a busy street we have crossed many, many times. I looked left, I looked right, I looked at the Light it was green for walk.

So I did stepping right out in front of a rolling City of Albuquerque bus which would stop at the Light, he did with a hard brake but I wondered why the

“What are you doing Dumb Ass “ look, I smiled at him and kept moving,

Right out in front of the speeding car next to the bus, Michael’s yell from the curb about the white car did give me a moment’s pause

With a little or maybe a lot of hard braking and a twist of the wheel he missed me giving me a “What are you doing Dumb Ass” look also.

When I looked at the Light again lo and behold it had changed to Red to hide its mistake.

Safely across the street I thanked Michael for the yell

Never for one second believe that you are not infallible always be aware the Lights are out to get you

I guess I’ll put my hat back on, pick up my ego and make my way unpretentiously and humbly down the path of life

Adding buses and white cars to my list


Be Safe for the 4th

Keep water nearby

Bravo to all of you for sharing your goals. I thought they were honorable, and I enjoyed reading your perspectives. Thank you for that!

Dottie, holy cow – you never fail to impress me. It’s extraordinary that you’re still out there helping people, after already spending a lifetime helping others. If anyone has earned a break, it’s you. But a break isn’t in your blood, is it? This type of selfless behavior is exactly why I think you should be declared a National Treasure. Please keep up the good work, sweet lady.

Gentlemen, and lady, thank you each of you Experts for being here. I hope you have a terrific Fourth of July holiday with your families and friends. We’ll see you back here in a couple of weeks. Thanks for being awesome!

Let’s move on now to the puzzler.

???Real or Fake???

Last week, I asked if these flowers were real or fake:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, real or fake plant puzzler

Let’s see how you answered:

Claude from Random Rants and Prickly Plants wrote, “Real verbena.”

mr_subjunctive from Plants Are the Strangest People wrote, “Oh yeah. Real.”

You fellas sound pretty sure of yourselves.

That’s two votes real, zero votes fake.

What’s the correct answer?

Let’s take a wider view:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, real or fake plant puzzler

They’re real! And real pretty! I say it all the time, real flowers are always prettier than fake ones. And they nourish the soul in a way that plastic flowers simply cannot.

Well done, guys! I’m not surprised at all – you two have sophisticated plant eyes.

Claude, you had the faster fingers – you were first with the correct answer, which makes you the best answerer. Good job! For being so speedy, this week you’ve earned the following title: WhoDat WhoDat I’m Texas Claude WhoDat WhoDat I’m King of Houseplant Puzzles WhoDat WhoDat I’m Wicked Fast WhoDat WhoDat I Have Green Blood WhoDat WhoDat And I’m the Grandest Champion WhoDat WhoDat.

So let’s say you’re out and about this weekend in the beautiful city of New Orleans, and you meet someone new. You should introduce yourself as Claude WhoDat WhoDat I’m Texas Claude WhoDat WhoDat I’m King of Houseplant Puzzles WhoDat WhoDat I’m Wicked Fast WhoDat WhoDat I Have Green Blood WhoDat WhoDat And I’m the Grandest Champion WhoDat WhoDat. They will either think you’ve spent too much time on Bourbon Street, or you’ll become friends for life, or both! No matter what, you’re a winner!

Congratulations! Please, multiply all the prizes by crawfish étouffée as my thank you to you!

Everyone’s a winner. To show my appreciation for you playing, I’d like to award you each the following prizes: The last weekend in June, 16 blessings, a sail around the lake, seven fruit kebobs, five homemade soaps, an A+, a generous trust fund, six throw pillows, 11-1/2 extra credit points, an evening at the ballpark, Clovis, two grab bags, a parsley garnish, an indoor swimming pond, one coupon good for half off a voucher, four summer squash, a clawfoot bathtub, a dozen spare eyelashes, a new smock, three bags of cotton candy, a priceless work of artsy, 14 chilled red grapes, one blue ribbon, a baby sea otter, the enchilada special, four summer spirits, two new dance tunes and 12 accolades. Congrats, and thanks so much for playing!

Up next, the new puzzler:

???Real or Fake???

Again with flowers. Are these flowers real or fake?

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, real or fake plant puzzler

Think you know the answer, smartyplants? Leave your best guess in the comments section. You have until midnight MST (that’s 2a.m. EST) next Thursday, July 3rd, to cast your vote. I’ll reveal the answer and the winner(s) next Friday. The Experts will be off next week, but I’ll be here. Remember, you have to play to win!