Summer Vacations

     Learn How
     Make Money
     Expand Your Knowledge
     My Favorite Activities
     To the Beach

     Go Camping
     PC & On-Line Games

I look back on the days of summer with sweetness and jealosy. How happy I was. How I miss those days. If I could live them over again, I would make them more memorable. Now that I have to work, I will never see those leisurely days of summer again.


Best Playgrounds Around the Metro Area
Cameron Run Water Park

Learn how to:

  • Shoot a bow and arrow
  • Make a fire without matches
  • Scuba Dive
  • Kitesurf
  • Windsurf
  • Play Chess, Backgammon, or Poker
  • Play a musical instrument
  • Take a summer class - learn a new language, or improve your Chinese or Spanish
  • Learn how to juggle

    Make money by

  • Opening a lemonade stand at the soccer field and bike path
  • Starting a babysitting service
  • Selling Grandma's Collectible Plates on E-bay Collectibles or Craig's List
  • Being a tutor for summer school

    Build your skills by:

  • Volunteering with a charity
  • Help someone learn to read at Literacy Council of Montgomery County
  • Build a treehouse

    Improve your knowledge

  • Read the Bible, Koran, Pali Canon, or Baghavad Gita

    Go Bicycling

  • Montgomery County Bike Map
  • Silver Spring Trails

    Make a Survival Kit

    In one Altoids tin put:

    “You can’t let people die in your class,” said Mr. McCann, who is a former Marine drill instructor.

    Out of a tackle box, he pulled out tinder fashioned from his own recipe: cotton balls moistened with petroleum jelly. A vial holds about 15 compressed, greasy orbs, which can burn for at least two minutes when expanded and lighted. Organic alternatives include cattails and curly birch bark. For his finale, he shaped some extra-fine steel wool into a fibrous horseshoe and touched the ends to the positive and negative contacts of the battery from his cellphone. Sparks flew, and the steel wool erupted in flames.

    Take a survival course


    My dad taught me to play checkers. He was very good and I don't think I ever beat him. Later I became addicted to chess. Uncle Hays taught me when when I was in ninth grade, I joined the Chess Team at Las Vegas High School in 10th and was ninth place. That's where I met Ian Jordan, number 1 or 2 against Lance Mays (Athiest vs Fundamentalist Christian).

    Then I assembled my computer Sophomore at Bishop Gorman and learned Adventure. Now you can waste many hours playing Adventure on-line

    Summer Activities

    How should you fill your leisure time? If I had my life over again, I'd make better use of my summers. I really miss summer vacation - 3 months, and winter vacations were a month long.

    Outward Bound - an alternative to boy scouts and girl scouts

    My favorite activities remain unchanged since I was 16

  • Reading
  • Flying
  • Bicycling
  • Chess
  • Photograpy
  • Camping
  • Backpacking
  • Racquetball
  • Frisbee

    Since I lost my feet, I can't do the last three anymore. If you choose team sports, hopefully you'll make some good friends and learn to get along with different kinds of people. Since all my activities were solitary ones, I was never able to do either, and my life is less than it would be. Except chess, I met one of my best friends (Ian Jordan) on the High school chess team. He now lives in Westminister and we see him a few times a year.

  • Scuba diving
  • Aquatic Adventures has a trip to Fiji (March 13-22; $3,195, includes airfare from Los Angeles). Classes start at $295. 7700-B Richmond Hwy., Alexandria, 703-619-1500,
  • Adventure Scuba Co. has open spots for a trip to Cozumel, Mexico (April 12-19; $999 plus airfare). Classes start at $375. 13901 Metrotech Dr., Chantilly, 703-263-0427,
  • SPE Dive School heads to Grand Cayman Island nearly every month (upcoming departures include Feb. 8 and March 7; $410 plus airfare). Classes start at $295. 4600 N. Park Ave., Suite 111, Chevy Chase, 301-657-2266,
  • For more dive schools, visit

  • Gardening - Another hobby that doesn't consume much time, or can consume all your time. Start with potted indoor plants. An outside garden is more rewarding but also more time consuming. If I'm going to spend time, I want something I can eat, unfortunately, animals love to eat anything your grow, except pretty flowers.

  • Aquariums - Fish are the easiest pets to keep. We've got two twenty gallon tanks. Both are fresh water but one has a bit of salt to make it suitable for the Mollies. a brackish water fish.
  • Astronomy - I've been meaning to buy a telescope for some time. I'm looking for an 8" or 10" Newtonian. Don't know yet wether I should get a cheap Dobson mount or an equatorial mount. Definitely the equatorial Mount if I plan to take pictures. There's not enough time to do everything I want. I miss summer vacations. Talk to Ian Jordan, my high school chess partner, who works at the Space Telescope Institute in Maryland Ian Jordan .
  • Skywatch Astronomy Links

  • Kite Flying - forget one-line kites, start with a two-line kite (in the attic) But the four line kite is the best, takes a lot of practice but it's worth it. Check the attic for the Revolution, watch the videotape. It's one of the few things in life that when I saw it, I knew I had to have it.
  • Ice Skating
  • Roller Skating
  • Knitting, crochet, sewing
  • Playing Music, singing
  • Swimming
  • Martial Arts
  •'s Top 100 Educational Web Sites of 2008

  • Teens on a Mission
  • Tips for Parents

    Water Fun

    Local Scuba and Indoor Waterparks

    Camping, Hiking

    See the Travel page for more information.

    To the Beach

    Washington Post, May 11, 2008
    Beach Bums

    How would you like to go for a nice swim at a beach that fails half of all tests for fecal contamination? No? Then get the facts before taking a dip.

    At the Natural Resources Defense Council Web site (, a map shows how often water at 100 popular U.S. beaches failed to meet federal health standards in the latest available rounds of tests. Bacterial counts that exceed standard levels set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency can cause gastrointestinal illnesses, pinkeye and rashes, among other things. The map was created by the NRDC, a nonprofit environmental advocacy group, using EPA data.

    The NRDC also named six "beach bums" that exceed EPA bacterial standards more often than not. Two are in Maryland on the Chesapeake Bay: The water at Hacks Point showed potentially unhealthful levels of contamination in 60 percent of tests. The figure is 56 percent at Bay Country Campground and Beach .

    Find a state-by-state list of test results at The site shows that the 48 monitored beaches in Virginia are checked every week, and the vast majority pass every test . In Maryland, some beaches are checked weekly, some monthly. Though Maryland's ocean beaches fare well , other swimming spots seem dicey. At the YMCA Camp Tockwogh , for example, the water fails to meet federal bacterial standards about half the time it's tested.

    There is no federal requirement that jurisdictions close a beach, or even notify the public, when water standards are violated, although most jurisdictions do so voluntarily.

    PC & On-Line Games

    By yourself, or with friends, you'll waste countless hours playing computer games. And multi-player games will suck you in to a new virtual community. These games allow you to make friends all over the world. Rather than spending time with your neighbors next door and friends at school, you'll find you'd rather play in a virtual world.
  • Creative Kids at Home
  • Mancala
  • Reversi
  • Domino Rules
  • Checkers
  • Learn 4 Good Games
  • Black Dog Word Games
  • Black Dog Puzzle-O-Rama
  • Pipe Dreams
  • Try Redline Rumble
  • Tantrix
  • National Geographic Kids Page
  • Classic Computer Games
  • Educational Prongo Games: Ages 3-6, 6-9, 9-12

    Block Advertisements

  • Adblock Plus, EasyList, Rick752

    Annabelle's Game - Spring 2008

    First, draw as many squares as you want on a piece of paper. Second, find a token for each player. Third, find a die to roll. Now, play by these rules or make up some of your own:
    1. Move 1 space and roll again.
    2. The other player moves 2 spaces, not you.
    3. You loose 3 turns.
    4. Move 8 spaces (double 4).
    5. The other player rolls and goes backward the number rolled.
    6. Move 6 spaces and switch positions with the other player.

    Computer Games

    I spent several summers playing computer games and became quite addicted to them. My first one, "Adventure" introduced by my cousin Glen who helped me with my first computer. Zork came next, and my first fincee got me SimEarth Zork "But as I played more and more, I was slowly being drawn in. Homework was secondary. Social life was non existent. Eating was of little relative importance anymore, for I swore that by time the sun set, I would connect London to Manchester, such is the addictive nature of Railroad Tycoon."

    Trade a paper clip for a house

    Sell your grandmother's plates on e-Bay or Craigslist

    Build a Computer

    One summer I built a chess computer (Boris), a Heathkit Printer, a Heathkit terminal, and a Z80 computer. Don't know if you can do that anymore, but I did it without any knowledge of electronics. It was a lot like putting a jigsaw puzzle together with a soldering iron.:
  • 1980 - North Star Horizon 8 MHz
    56K or Memory originally 16K Double Density 180K 5 1/4" floppies
    300 Baud Modem

    When I arrived at Northwester to begin my graduate Political Science program, I purchased:

  • 1986 - Zenith Laptop 2 3.5" 1.44 MB Floppies
    1200 Baud internal modem

    To help me as I worked on my Ph.D. Dissertation, I purcahsed a

  • 1995 - IBM ThinkPad 125MB hard drive
    with a 100MB Zip Drive 16Kbs external modem

    One month after marrying your mother, as we were settling into our new house, I bought a

  • 2002 - Dell Dimension 40 Gigabyte
    56Kbs internal Modem
    Now with DSL
  • 2008 Bookmarks Bookmarks for 2008
    Home   Last updated: August 29, 2008