Live Your Road Trip Dream by Phil and Carol White, Book Review

Planning the Dream, Making it Happen, and Enjoying the Ride

In this second edition of their award winning book “Live Your Road Trip Dream”, Phil and Carol White have found the perfect balance in crystallizing the dream, planning the “plot,” and journalling the journey.

In this edition of their how to planning guide, the Whites have included new sections with ideas for taking sabbaticals, conducting business while on the road, and ideas for using the trip for instructing your children.

I have heard it said that half the fun is in the planning. This is where the book begins. The White’s have divided their book into two parts. “Part One” begins with the dream stage and suggested plans to help the reader determine and put into action the steps for making their own personal dream trip come to fruition.

The White’s include detailed suggestions for financing the trip, how to make provision for your home, cars, and family responsibilities. They include pointers on selecting a travel home; planning the route, mapping out the details, and keeping in touch with the family. Carol offers remarkable insight into some decisions that may come up along the way as well as anticipating possible emergencies.

In “Part Two” Carol shares journals of their journey. She points out places of interest they visited the trip, the character and quality of some of the hotels along the way, and items of historical interest. Their trip included a visit to all of the 48 contiguous states, as well as 43 National Parks, and many monuments and museums of historical significance.

Phil shared some “Phil-osophies” regarding the sport halls of fame they visited, stories of enjoying golf along the way, and some sports events they watched. This added a dimension to the book as it gave a man’s view of many of their stops along the way.

Resource lists, check off lists, worksheets, and sample itineraries are all included in the appendix. I enjoyed the many, many, photographs included throughout the book.

As a writing team Carol and Phil have written an engaging and positive story. Their book resonates with a contagious spirit which instills in the reader the impetus to move from a dream, to a plan, to making turning the ignition to make that dream become a reality.

RLI Press, 978-097529839

As Reviewed for Midwest Book Review

Former Chinese premier Li Peng releases book, chimes to Xi's 'Chinese Dream' – Hong Kong Free Press

Former Chinese premier Li Peng has released a new book on local economics in which he urged the Chinese people to work together to fulfill the “Chinese Dream.”

The book is a compilation of Li’s speeches and reports on local economies in various provinces, cities, and villages in China between 1983 and 2003 .

Li Peng was premier from 1988 to 1998, during which he presided over the Tiananmen massacre, ordering a military crackdown against pro-democracy student protesters in June 1989. He was also instrumental in the realisation of the Three Gorges Dam project.

 Jiang Zemin, Li Peng, Qiao Shi and Deng Xiaoping

In order from left: Jiang Zemin, Li Peng, Qiao Shi, Deng Xiaoping. Photo: Apple Daily

In Li’s foreword, dated July 15th, 2015, Li wrote “I sincerely hope that Chinese citizens will, under the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party, fulfill the Chinese dream and actualise national rejuvenation in order to create a prosperous society.”

The “Chinese Dream,” coined by President Xi Jinping, aims at national rejuvenation and the development of a prosperous society.

The book contains 150 pieces of writing, totalling 38,000 words, according to The Beijing News. It also contains a recent photograph of Li Peng, taken on September 3rd, 2015 when he viewed the China’s 2015 Victory Day Parade from the Tiananmen rostrum.

china military parade

China military parade. Photo: HKFP.

The former premier is also said to be working on a memoir of his life after 1983, according to Beijing News. His previous memoir, published in 2014, spanned from 1928 to 1983. It is not clear if Li will mention the 1989 crackdown in the new memoir, but a book called Li Peng June 4 Diary, the authenticity of which has not been officially recognised,  was published in 2010 in the US.



A Review of "A Witch’s Book of Dreams" by Karri Allrich

Karri Allrich’s book A Witch’s Book of Dreams was something of a pioneer in the field of dreaming. When it was published in 2001 there were few other books on the market that married together dreaming with the spiritual. I purchased this book when it first came onto the market and have cherished it ever since for it sparked some incredible dreams for me. While I do not support all of the models presented in this book, I still find it to be a most helpful resource for the beginning dream worker.

The first half of the book contains chapters that educate and initiate the dreamer into the subconscious realm based upon Jung psychology. Allrich well explains the archetypes and uses real dream examples to introduce the language of symbols and animals in dreams to the dreamer. There are chapters about The Importance of Shadow Work, Nightmares, Beginning Dream Work and using tools such as the Tarot to aid in understanding the symbology of dreams. The idea that Allrich puts forward about the shadow is not something I personally believe or support but it presents a common belief among other dream workers that dreamer should at least be aware of.

The book has shamanic and Wiccan threads running through its pages with explanations of how to work with the moon and how moon phases affect our dreams. Allrich also explains how to cast a dream spell and the uses of association, active imagination, and automatic writing. Although I’m not Wiccan the information is helpful in starting someone off who has never worked with dreams before.

The second half of the book is dedicated to dream symbols listed in alphabetical order. Allrich derives her dream symbols from the tarot, archetypes and shamanism, which have made more sense to me than interpretations based purely on psychology. Allrich dismisses Freudian concepts of symbols and I whole heartedly agree; for example, snakes in dreams to Freud are strictly a phallic symbol indicating repressed sexual desires. This is certainly not my experience. I regularly dream about snakes and have come to see them as allies in the preparation for spiritual initiation, which is how this author also acknowledges their symbolism. The symbols that Allrich presents in the dictionary section of the book covers much of what the beginner would encounter. Each symbol is outlined with great explanations as well as questions to spark the dreamers mind of possible meanings for their own dreams. Symbols are cross referenced in a handy index making the dictionary easy and quick to use.

If you are just starting your dream journey and beginning to delve into dream work this book would be a helpful resource to add to your dream library.

Are You Doing Enough to Protect Your Dreams?

The main reason I would like to write this article is because of a movie I have watched a few years back which has inspired me deeply till this day. It is scene in Pursuit of Happyness where Will Smith said to his son:

“Don’t ever let somebody tell you that you can’t do something. You got a dream, you gotta protect it. People can’t do it themselves. You tell them you can’t do it. You want something, go get it.”

For those of you who have watched the movie, you would have understand, the seems-to-be endless hardship he has to go through together with his son. It bring great ache to my heart when he was hiding in the toilet. Using 1 leg to stop the door afraid it would open because he has nowhere else to sleep for the night while crying. He has to go through so much of hardship and obstacles but he never lose sight of what he wants to do, not one moment.

Those who have not watch it, I sincerely encourage you to go rent or buy the DVD for it. It is worth every single cent of it. Let’s not lose sight of what I am trying to share with you. This article is not about promoting the movie.

Do you have a dream which you would like to pursue? It can be anything, small or big dreams, someone, something or from yourself? What is more important is how much do you want this dream of yours? Are you doing enough to protect and hold it as close as possible to yourself?

There will be bound to be many things to test us on our resolve towards our dreams. The universe will distract you away from your dreams when you are unaware. It is best that you have a dream book. Inside this dream book contains all the small cut out pictures you would like to have in the near future a.k.a. your dream items. This way you can refer to everyday and remind yourself of the things you want in life, feel it and believe in it and you will have it.

Remember nobody can stop you or take away your dreams unless you let them. To have a fulfilling life you have to live your dreams. Turning your dreams into reality is one of the best experiences one can have. What is stopping you now? Hold on to that dream of yours and never, never, never let go of it.

A dream-like critique of post-Soviet Russia –

OBLIVION by Sergei Lebedev.  No Credit.OBLIVION

Sergei Lebedev

There have always been people who refuse to forget, and this is a book for them. The debut novel by a young Russian journalist and poet is about a journey to the Gulag, a search for history that few want to talk about, told through a search for the origins of an old man. Called Grandfather II, he grafts himself onto the narrator’s family and tries to claim the young boy as a replacement for a lost son.

The book is also a long shudder of disgust from a writer born to the decay of the 1980s, and like a Soviet orator who can’t risk being misunderstood, Lebedev likes to pile symbols into evocative paragraphs that end in explanations. The result pushes poetic language to the edge, somewhere between a novel and an essay that pulls along with the single-mindedness of a dream. It is an often pitiless book, animated by the rage of a child who will do anything to avoid falling under someone’s power, even run away into the woods or die in a quarry.

The childhood parts are astonishing. Grandfather II is transparent to the narrator’s young eyes, encountering self-invention for the first time and discovering how habitual deception can replace a person’s true character.

Before there are any facts about Grandfather II, the old man dies (on the day the Soviet Union dissolves) and all his papers are burned. But the narrator, now an adult, finds the trail easily and, like a railroad, it leads to the north. There is no dialogue with the grotesques who pass before his eyes along the way, but every person and scene has a symbolic charge that will be revealed. People will smell of death and their mutilated bodies will be read like the outlines of pointless constructions now receding into the tundra. If there is snow, it first falls black and then red; a cemetery carver will look like a golem made of tombstone dust; a radio operator dreams of receiving a message instructing him to arrest himself.

In this dreamscape it’s not possible to know whether Lebedev is adrift in history or reeling in contemporary Russia, but if you know the country you will recognize the mouldy buildings and tortured landscapes he basks in. You may also ask if every hollow has to be a grave and every river full of corpses. Is excess necessary to make memory speak and to provoke secretive people to explain their faded photographs? The publisher seems to embrace the political angle (I’ve never seen a novel blurbed by so many ambassadors) and certainly this book’s quiet anger is well-timed. Resurgent nationalism in Russia, like everywhere else, requires historical blindness, the desire to forget and a hunger for oblivion.


The Alchemist: A Fable About Following Your Dream

From vistas of the scorching desert sands of Africa to the undulating pastures of the Andalusian countryside, The Alchemist is a soul-stirring novel, brimming with fantastic insight and vivid imagery. Be it unraveling the truth of omens or fulfilling our Personal Legend, this spellbinding book offers much in the way of story telling at its best.

Paolo Coelho’s exquisite yet simple writing weaves a hopeful and truly breathtaking narrative on life, love and dreams. The story revolves around a free-spirited shepherd, Santiago, who dreams of traveling to the pyramids in Egypt. Along the way he encounters a king who teaches him about the “Soul of the World”, an Englishman searching for an enigmatic alchemist and a beautiful girl who shows him the meaning of true love. In sheer poetic prose, Santiago’s journey of self discovery resonates long after one has finished reading the book.

At its crux, this inspirational novel is about always listening to one’s heart and never giving up on one’s dreams. Coelho remarkably unites the realms of mysticism and reality, using hauntingly beautiful symbolism to convey his philosophy of embracing one’s destiny, refusing to conform to society and denying complacency. The book forces you to question yourself; where you are in life and where you intend to go. It exhorts you to never stop exploring, for that is the very essence of the human spirit. Once we have the courage to follow our dreams, the universe conspires to help us on our path, urging us on towards fulfilling our true potential.

Coelho describes how there exists a divine spark within all of us. By struggling for our dreams, we find God and ultimate happiness. Fearing failure and disappointment is the greatest cause of despair.

Omens play a potent role in the book. From Tangiers to the Sahara, Santiago discovers omens that like an umbilical cord tie him to his destiny. Interpreting these omens gives Santiago the assurance he needs and provide witness to his spiritual enlightenment.

One of the major themes in this book is of love: love that is eternal as a part of the “Soul of the World” and love that is a part of life and Nature. True love will never keep us from realizing our dreams. The interesting debate between fate and free will is also a recurring theme. As Santiago realizes, it is the journey that is more important than the end or the beginning.

This compelling tale gives birth to undying conviction that you can accomplish whatever you desire. It touches your soul, captivating your senses with its majestic lyricism and heartrending message. A masterpiece of modern literature, it will remain with you forever, treasured for years to come.

Write in Retirement to Fulfill Your Dream of Publishing a Book

When seniors set out to fulfill their dream of writing a book, the majority choose creating a memoir. But that’s only one of the many possibilities when you write in your retirement. For example after years of honing your expertise in a business or profession, you are highly qualified to produce a how-to related to some aspect of your career field.

Many seniors are highly skilled at their favorite hobby. These can range from stamp collecting to expertise in special periods of history, from sports to music and much more. An excellent example is Daniel Leeson, an IBM retiree living on the West Coast. He is an outstanding clarinet player with many years of experience and a devotee of the great classical composer Mozart.

One the 81% of mature Americans that the Gallup pollsters report dream of publishing a book, Leeson had the choice of writing about his technical experiences or about music, his beloved pastime. He chose to write about Mozart and his musical output, and has completed three highly recognized, five star books on the subject.

Memoir Is Number One

There are a number of reasons why the memoir is often the first choice of many retirees. It can serve as a guide to the author’s offspring, demonstrating those characteristics and standards that the author believes should be essential in the lives of his/her heirs.

Perhaps the author wishes to establish a lasting memorial of his/her achievements to pass on to future generations. Instead of writing solely about themselves, other memoirists focus on the family, its history and the role its members played in the society of their generation.

The memoir can concentrate on a specific incident in the author’s life, explaining in detail its effect on him/her and on the family, friends and/or professional contacts who are either parties to the event or simply bystanders. Conversely, the author may find it preferable to trace many years of happenings that shaped his/her life.

Calling on Your Expertise

The knowledge you have accumulated during your career can provide insight that will prove helpful to those who succeed you following your retirement. Regardless of the type of work you did, you can pass on tips and guidance gathered during those many years. Whether you served as a lofty brain surgeon, a plumber, a retailer, a landscaper or a skilled artisan, there will always be people who can benefit from your experience.

Providing information in a how-to book is relatively easy. The content that you provide is far more important and certainly more relevant to the reader than the skill with which you present it. You certainly possess the vocabulary of the vocation and you undoubtedly can place words on a page in a way that makes sense. With some care for grammar and spelling, you should be able to produce a meaningful book.

When you consider writing a how-to, think about the set of directions you receive when you purchase an item that must be assembled. You are told to spread out the parts and begin assembling them one by one, gradually constructing the finished product. Follow that pattern when assembling your book.

Plan out what you want to relate. Break the subject down into its individual components. Write each on paper or on your computer. Meld the segments into a logical pattern that makes it possible for your reader to follow easily.

Step-by-step, lead the reader through each of these components as they build upon one another until your entire thesis has been presented and understood. That same approach can be used effectively when you write about your favorite pastime.

Perhaps you’d prefer to explore a subject in a broader way. For example, instead of writing about how to perform a successful biopsy of the brain, you choose to write on the development of neurosurgery over the past century.

If you are a retired plumber, you might not want to write on how best to replace a leaky toilet or some similar task. Instead you choose to write on the history of the water closet from its beginnings in ancient Greece to the modern day conservation models.

There is no end to the variety of topics you can choose or to the approach you select in writing about them. But stop dreaming. Set a regular schedule for your writing and sit down at your computer. You will be amazed at how quickly you complete the task and finally fulfill that dream of becoming a published author.

My 10 Favorite Books: Terence Koh – New York Times


For his bookshop and website One Grand Books, the editor Aaron Hicklin asked people to name the 10 books they’d take with them if they were marooned on a desert island. The next in the series is the artist Terence Koh, who shares his list exclusively with T.

“The Krishnamurti Reader,” J. Krishnamurti

A guide on living. Krishnamurti asks us to question everything, find out the answers ourselves. It’s something that strikes my mind every time I read the news and all the problems we have today. Start with mutating our own mind and then society’s.

“Silence,” John Cage

John Cage sings to me in that calm gentle voice of his every day. Just sitting here while writing this — crick crack of logs burning in woodstove, almost silent sound of a distant wind — I am reminded that the universe is a constantly changing song. The most beautiful music in existence is when we let our minds be silent.

“Four Quartets,” T.S. Eliot

“Time present and time past

Are both perhaps present in time future

And time future contained in time past.

If all time is eternally present

All time is unredeemable.”

I have not read the rest of this little book beyond these first two sentences. The ever-living now: live it fully and awake.

“Walden,” Henry David Thoreau

I glued all the pages of “Walden” shut and it’s the only book that sits by my bed. For me, it’s the idea of this book as a single physical object that matters. A book unopened can be a bed lamp.

“The Spirit of Zen: A Way of Life, Work and Art in the Far East,” Alan Watts

Oh, sparkling Alan Watts. What I remember most clearly from this book is that all words — the book itself — is only a guide, like a boat, to help you cross the river. Don’t mistake the book for the way across. All books are a boat. Zen is life itself sewn into the fabric of daily existence.


Terence Koh

Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

“The World as I See It,” Albert Einstein

On the second page, Einstein outlines the principles that guide his life: “The ideals which have lighted me on my way and time after time given me new courage to face life cheerfully, have been truth, goodness, and beauty.” Three simple words, yet full of mystery and light.

“The Snow Leopard,” Peter Matthiessen

A book about mountains, loss, death, life, living Zen and everything else in between. Living on a mountain myself, Peter reminds me that the mountains and stones are alive. Friends that I speak to daily. Peter Matthiessen, together with Gary Snyder, Arne Naess and John Cage are my teachers on how to grow older. With vigor, elegance and spark.

“Living the Good Life: Helen and Scott Nearing’s Sixty Years of Self-Sufficient Living,” Helen and Scott Nearing

This was the book that inspired me to move from the city and live on a mountain in the middle of nowhere and everywhere. In 1932, they too moved from New York City to start living off the land deep in the green mountains of Vermont. Living off the land and in the seasons gives one a sense of honest purpose. Art, farming, poetry, architecture, carpentry, accounting, cooking have no boundaries with each other.

“We Were an Island: The Maine Life of Art and Nan Kellam,” Peter Blanchard III

A story about a couple that bought a remote island in Maine to live on for the rest of their lives. A dream of mine, too: to live on an island, physically and spiritually.

“Row, Row, Row Your Boat,” Anonymous

I have been collecting different versions in book form of this simple song:

Row, row, row your boat

Gently down the stream

Merrily, merrily, merrily

Life is but a dream

Live life gently and merrily. Never judging, just observing on this boat ride. Alone at home I sing this song every day and perhaps you will too.

Oxenfree Review – Teenage Dream – Bleeding Cool News


Oxenfree reminds me of my youth. A time when I’d go adventure with my friends, find stupid stuff to do and just be a teenager. It also reminds me of even further back when I had fear of the unknown, the supernatural and ghostly ideas that would haunt me in the night. It feels like a meditation of being young but not necessarily at any one point. Just the adventure, the hopefulness, the fear and the loss that all permeate us as we form into the adult people we become.  I know that sounds very grandiose, but these ruminations are the patch work quilt that come together to create Oxenfree‘s make up.

The debut game from Night School Studios certainly has roots in a new kind of game movement emerging, less about the fierce action that rules AAA game spaces, but rather reflections on youth and the people in the game. This is much more in your Life is Strange and Gone Home pool, and boy oh boy is it a great innings from the game on that front. Much like those two previous games though, the notion of supernatural elements hangs over proceedings like a silky spectre. The game plays like an adventure game of yore, having you explore a large space, find clues, make decisions and solve environmental puzzles to progress.

Oxenfree puts you in the shoes of Alex, a teenaged girl on her way to a rager on an abandoned military island with her newly legally binding step-brother Jonas and dorky-ish best friend Renn, On your way you meet mean girl Clarissa and her friend Nona. These characters serve as the group you’ll social navigate in the game. Things do turn though when you soon find yourself party to some supernatural shenanigans.

These supernatural happenings are one of the key highlights of the experience. The game has a very definite backbone doused in horror, and it is so delightfully strong, it looms over the entire proceedings. The way these entities manifest themselves are genuinely eerie in a way that crawls up your spine, especially as you never quite know their intentions or what they want with you. While the game isn’t necessarily “scary”,  it instead trades more in the “creepy”. This is a campfire spook story, thus again bringing back memories of youthfulness.


The island you explore during your time with Oxenfree is also a real winner. It constantly felt bigger than it actually was, with drop dead gorgeous art work done on the backgrounds. This is a place I could get lost in, looking through every nook and cranny to find more about the islands storied history. The map is still ironed into my mind, and I could get from one place to another from relatively memory. That isn’t the case for most games. This place has left a genuine impression on me, both comforting and ominous at the same time. There is so much to find and do, from straight historical tour guide entries, to deeper secrets about the game’s darker undercurrent. The place, while not feeling alive, since it is mostly abandoned, feels lived in and rich.

The game is also supported again by a truly inspired soundtrack from SCNTFC. A sort of drugged out haze by way of dirty electro fitting neatly with the game’s sleepy dreamlike qualities and utter fascinations with radios. It’s something I can’t wait to get into my hands on it for standalone listening.

Where the game does fall down though, is that it feels a little short. This isn’t a complaint I usually level at a game, as I very much enjoy shorter, succinct experiences. Honestly though, these character and this world are a place I wanted to spend more time in. The game clocks in somewhere between four and five hours, which wouldn’t normally be a problem. That’s a great length for an indie adventure title. This does hinder the game a little though, since the ending feels particularly rushed. Things conveniently tie up, the antagonists make a sharp turn (at least in my run) contradicting what they said previously, and I just wished it had all been allowed to breathe a little more. The final points of the game got a little lost and that is a real shame.

I’ve purposefully used a lot of overly descriptive adjectives in this review because, honestly, that is what Oxenfree feels like it’s about. It’s about a time during youth, but not necessarily one time. A lost memory of a great weekend you had when you were 15 that only stirs in the back of your mind. Oxenfree is a great adventure game, mixing Life is Strange and Silent Hill into a hazy cocktail that I wholeheartedly recommend. While it doesn’t stick its landing, this is something that is clearly designed to be played over and over. The beautiful art work, the ominous yet inviting island and the creepy supernatural goings on make for a dazzlingly interesting first outing from Night School Studios.

Buy it if: You enjoy adventure games and want a well-realized, creepy (not scary) campfire story supported by impeccable environmental work and a stellar score.

Avoid if: You need don’t enjoy adventure games or you need a $20 game to be longer than four hours in the first run through.

Score: 8.8/10

Growing Taller Secrets Book – Your Ultimate Guide to Getting Your Dream Height

If you happen to be getting weary about finding the best method to help you grow taller, don’t despair. There is the latest Growing Taller Secrets Book designed to help people with short stature.

While having a short stature can truly affect so many aspects of your life, it should never be something that can cause you great despair to the point of giving up and just doing nothing about your condition. Instead, it should prompt you to struggle further in searching for the most suitable technique to make you grow taller. Learn more about this book by searching for countless resources in the Internet.

First and foremost, you will be delighted when you find out that the book does not advocate you to take some oral medications or drugs just to achieve your dream height; nor does it recommend that you go through surgical procedures that will have to cut your bones to create some damage or fracture; thereby causing some growths in the end. The book provides helpful tips on how to get the most appropriate set of exercises that could stretch out those bones and therefore help you become taller.

In fact,Growing Taller Secrets Book claims that there will be 2 to 4 inches increase in your height by simply following the instructions provided in the book. What is more, the author gives you details on the exact exercises your bones will need to reach its maximum stretching that will lead to height gain.

Do the hanging exercise.

This type of exercise is very effective in stretching out one’s bone which has been proven effective in increasing height by two inches or four, or sometimes even more. All you will have to do is to hang by a bar using your hands while staying there for some minutes. Keep in mind that you will get the best results from this exercise if you do it 30 minutes for per week.

Hang upside down like a bat.

Hanging upside is a great exercise that is very effective if you truly bent while stretching your bones in a safe manner. No reason for you to worry since there will be a device to make sure that you are closely held by a bar from the top. The concept is actually leaving it all to gravity to do the work by pulling your body down on to the floor.