Why am I in Hawaii?


Why in the world would I take off from Christmas tree trimming and holiday baking to go to Hawaii? The reason I’m here is to honor the veterans of Pearl Harbor, those that lost their lives and the ones who survived. 

I always knew about Pearl Harbor but to hear the stories of survivors make me realize how deep of a debt we owe them. 

One story especially grabbed my attention. I was listening to the radio about 9 months ago when I heard about a survivor, Don Stratton I then immediately called my dad, an author, Ken Gire. I said “dad, you have to write this man’s story.”


I’m still in wonderment that he jumped on the story. So, here I am 9 months later, in Hawaii with my dad and survivor, Don Stratton of the U.S.S. Arizona and his amazing family. 


The press surrounding this book has been phenomenal. It is a heartfelt gripping story. The book title is All the Gallent Men.  You can find this book in Walmart, Target, Costco, Sam’s Club and Barnes and Noble. You can also click here and buy it on Amazon. It is already a best seller. 

I hope you love the book as much as I do. This weekend I will select one random subscriber to my blog to win a signed copy of this book. It is signed by Donald Stratton and Ken Gire. Please subscribe and I will announce the winner this weekend. Aloha!🌴🙂🌺

Upcycling a Woodshop Reject

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I found unfinished what I can only assume is some sort of tool toting box.I imagine that a young middle school boy made this in the hopes of suprising his dad for Father’s Day. Fortunetly I was able to find this gem at my local thrift store for $1.99.

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The first thing I did was to stain the entire box. I just needed a small amont of stain for this project. Buy the smallest container of stain at your local hardware store. Trust me a little goes along way. I just used paper towels and smeared the stain all over the wood. I made sure to rub the stain on going with the natural grain of the wood. Make sure to wipe off any excess stain and then let dry for 1-2 hours.

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After the stain has dried I painted the outside of this box. I chose a neutral flat color. I actually got this paint for free by entering a Behr’s online contest. I left the inside unpainted for contrast. After the paint is completelty dry (about 1 hour) I roughed up the edges with sandpaper so the stain would show through, giving this piece a shabby chic look.

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I then used a soft cloth and rubbed Feed-N-Wax on the inside and out. I let this sit for about 20 minutes then buffed it out with my rag.

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This is the finished project. You could use this as a planter or portable silverware holder. Now I know that you probablly wont find this exact item at your thrift store but keep your eyes open for small wood items that you could use this technique on.

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