Kevin Hellriegel's Blog of Worthless Advice

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Tag Archives: Kauai

National Hot Tub Day – March 28 – Worthless Tips to Make It Awesome!

sa-1807454_1920.jpgAh, March 28 is National Hot Tub Day according to some random website I stumbled upon when I was bored one evening (who says this internet isn’t helpful and only spreads “fake news”?).  Throw on your speedo, thong, or your bikini, play some Kenny G, and hit the hot tub because it is National Hot Tub Day!!

On a side tangent, I noticed that romance writers love hot tubs.  They write the hot tubs into their stories all the time.  Yes, I read romance novels.  In between rapid reading of my gun magazines, truck magazines, and muscle car magazines, resides my collection of romance novels.  Since I am a caring and sensitive guy (just ask my imaginary stalker Cyndi), you know that I am a great fan of romance novels.

But let’s get back to the focus of National Hot Tub Day and that is Hot Tubs.  Hot tubs are a wonderful way to soak away your problems and worries.  It’s like a vacation at your own home.  I like to make sure my hot tub is properly maintained.  Lucky for me, I don’t have sensitive skin, just sensitive feelings.  OK, we know I don’t have any feelings but we still want to have some nice hot tub water.martini-1117932_1920.jpg

Lately, we have had some cold and rainy weather.  After all, it is Seattle and we don’t get sunshine until July.  I’ve been feeling cold lately, so I love to enjoy the hot tub when it is chilly out.  My muscles and joint loosen up and I can just sit there and float.  For roughly 15 minutes, I can just relax.  I can pretend I’m at a ski resort or on the beach on the island of Kauai.

Tips for Successful Hot Tub Party Day:

  • What if you don’t have a hot tub? Find a friend or a neighbor that has one.  Then invite yourself over on National Hot Tub Day.  You owe it to them to honor this day!

  • Avoid Alcohol – Wait, what? Yes, we all know I enjoy a nice whiskey but alcohol and hot tubs aren’t a good mix.  Hot Tub water dilutes your cocktail too much.  The warm water in your hot tub can speed up the process of inebriation, and can increase your chances of a hangover

  • Avoid Falling Asleep in the Hot Tub – you should focusing on the soaking and relaxing of the hot water.  Enjoy this moment, save sleeping for your bed.

  • Have Music – What to play?  Some Depeche Mode? Some Kenny G? Some Lady Gaga remix?  The theme from the movie “Jaws”?  It’s up to you, but don’t keep that stereo or iPhone too close to the hot tub.  You don’t want your imaginary friends to knock it in.

  • Have Extra Towels Available – you know some goofball will forget his towel and then wander around your house looking for one.  That’s a good way to ruin your hardwood floors.  Have a stack of old towels ready for him.

  • Clean! – Keep the area around your hot tub clean.  Vacuum up all the lose dirt, dog hair, old fern leaves, and candy wrappers.  You don’t want to drag all that stuff into your hot tub.

  • Take A Shower – Encourage your guest to shower BEFORE they come over to hot tub.  The less body oils, old sweat, stripper dust, and daily dirt you have coming into the hot tub, the better!  It cuts down on chemical use.

  • Check the Chemical Levels – You should be doing daily or weekly check of the chemicals.  Use those water test strips.

Those are my awesome (or rather worthless) hot tub tips for National Hot Tub Day!  I know you won’t bother to play attention to them but at least pretend you read the whole blog post and give it a big “LIKE”.  Can you do that?  Thanks!

 

 

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Ready for some Spring Cleaning? Degrease your Kitchen Cabinets with Kitty Cats!

Sorry that this is a worthless advice tip…..and it doesn’t feature any kitty cats.  Well, just a picture of a cat; that’s it.

For the past few months, we have decided to clean up and get rid of a lot of stuff that has accumulated over the past 13 years here in our mansion.  Part of this cleaning focus stems from my Father passing away and my Mom needing help to get rid of stuff.  In December, my son and I flew to Kauai to help my mom tackle the office and help close down the photography business.

When I came home, my son and I were in agreement that we needed to clear out the clutter. His words were something to the tune of “Please don’t leave me with a bunch of stuff to get rid of when you die.”  Now, I’m not planning on dying soon but I do want to remove clutter and clean up.  My wife is fully onboard and my daughter thinks we are “messy” so she fully agrees as wellcat-468232_1920.jpg.

Today I noticed a slight build up of kitchen grease on the very top of our kitchen cabinet above the stove.  I did a quick YouTube search and came across this helpful video (see below) I thought I’d share with you.  This isn’t my video or my house.  Enjoy the video and if you have any cleaning tips, please feel free to share them in the comments below!

My Prefect Gift: My Stories

Have you be on vacation lately?  Do you feel that you have to buy souvenirs for all your friends and relatives back home?  You know, all those schmucks that didn’t come with you on your dream vacation?  And now they want a gift from you?  An expensive trinket that means nothing to them but costs you a fortune.  A trinket to prove your friendship?

No, my dear worthless advice blog readers…this is when we put down our foot and say “No more worthless gifts”.  Let me enlighten you, dear readers to a gift that keeps on giving to my friends and relatives…my stories!

How can my stories be a gift?  Upon my return from a trip, I’ve noticed my kids usually ask this question: What did you bring me?  When they were younger, I use to be able to get away with bringing them restaurant napkins or maybe some airline peanuts.  Heck, when they were younger you could bring them a hotel brochure and they would be impressed.  But now, they want more.  You know…things like a tee-shirt…a snow globe…a boxed set of Chinese throwing stars…a new Dell Alienware laptop….typical things for kids.

family-591579_1920Instead, I bring them my exciting stories of making Kona coffee in my hotel room, ordering a sandwich at a beachside deli, and how the old lady almost ran me over at the cross walk.  I let them know that my life is exciting and dangerous; yet can be boring and mundane at times.  Clearly, my listeners will learn from my engaging and entertaining stories and appreciate them more than a dull old trinket from my Maui vacation trip.

Who wants a seashell lei when they could instead feel the salt spray on their face as they listen to how I walked along Wailua Beach on Kauai at sunrise?  Their mind will hear the crashing of the waves on the beach, the Hawaiian music floating across the lobby of the hotel, the soft gentle trade wind will kiss their face, and their eyes will begin to squint when I mention the bright sun reflecting off the golden sand.  Truly, my vast stories have awoken them from their mindless slumber and taken them on a journey like no other.

1 palm-tree-2095813.jpgMy stories of coconut palm trees swaying in the wind will delight the young and old alike.  Maybe I should even talk about the annoying tourist at the bar?  You know the guy that talks way too loud and complains about being there?

Yes, dear readers, you are welcome!  (I know you want to “Thank” me for sharing my stories) in my blog.  In fact, leave a comment about this post or your favorite story below in my comments section.  And if you’d like to do a guest blog entry, send me a private message.

 

Worthless Travel Tips – Best Worthless Advice Tips for Your Next Airline Flight!

plane-50893_1920Let’s face it, you hate people, I hate people, and we really hate sitting next to them in the airplane.  Sure, we all wish we could afford First Class but we can’t.  However, we can use certain techniques to maximize your seat space on the airplane.

  1. Bring Your Own Smelly Food – Since the airlines want to make a profit, one of the first things to go was the food service.  But this is an awesome time to bring your own food along!  And it had better be extremely good and stinky.  We all know that the stinky food is the best food!  Pickled eggs, sauerkraut, sardines, garlic bread, cat food, and maybe some strange food that would make a billy goat puke is just what you need on your next flight.
  2. Stake out the Armrest – the seats and the armrest aren’t getting any bigger on airplanes these days and you need to stake your claim to them.  As soon as you sit down, stretch out and take as much space as you can.  When your neighbors arrive, just cough a lot, and wipe your hands all over the armrest.  Ha, these armrest belong to me now.
  3. Take Those Shoes Off and Let Those Stinky Feet Breath – why should your feet be trapped in your shoes?  These flight is the beginning of your vacation.  Take those shoes off and relax.dirtyfeet
  4. Don’t Brush Your Teeth – nothing says “I don’t care about life, you, or your comfort” than skipping the brushing those pearly white teeth.  Your mouth should smell and taste like the inside of a elementary school dumpster on a hot spring afternoon.
  5. Don’t Shower – Again, you want to push people away.  With your awful breath, you can add to the sensual pleasure by not taking a shower for a few days before your flight.
  6. Dress Poorly – dress like a slob AND make sure you wear the wrong travel clothes.  Pants that are too tight – check!  Coats with not enough pockets – check! A big hat that gets in the way – check!bum
  7. Have a HUGE Carry On Bag – The heavier, the better.  Just like all the unsolved resentment you carry around in your soul, your carry on bag should be just as heavy.  Make sure that you can’t lift it over your head.  Ideally, your bag should make a professional weightlifter pop a blood vessel as he lifts it.
  8. Talk to EVERYONE…be loud and proud!  Everyone wants to hear about how you had an awful time on the taxi ride to the airport, or how Aunt Megan thinks you drink too much.  Make new friends by asking questions that are way too personal.  Remember, make them feel uncomfortable and they will scoot away from you as far as their little seatbelt will allow.

As always, I know these eight awesome travel tips will really bring you to the top of your worthless life.  What better way to make it to the lower bottom of life?

Kauai Beach – Papa’a

Kauai Beach

Happy Monday! Enjoy this image of Papa’a Bay Beach on Kauai.

 

Pajamas in Public…Just Say No!

I recently wrote about my travels to Kauai and how I disliked the airline system.  Upon talking with my FAA friend today, he mentioned that I had totally forgotten to mention how much I hate passengers who wear their pajamas while traveling.  Mind you, it isn’t just airline travel I see this trend happening in.  I also notice it in the grocery stores, at gas stations, and even at my kids’ school (most often parents being the offenders).pajamas in public2.jpg

It floors me to see grown ups wearing Hello Kitty pajamas at 3:20 pm in the afternoon.  For example, I was walking my daughter home with her friends and two adults were putting something in their car wearing their pajama bottoms like khaki slacks.  It is 3:20 in the afternoon and I have to see your Hello Kitty pajamas?  How old are you? Three years old?

Getting back to the air travel pajama problem, I really don’t think that as an adult I need to see your pajamas.  The only acceptable people that are allowed to wear pajamas on an airline flight are children under the age of 5.  If the kids are in Kindergarten, I’ll cut them some slack.  However, first grade and above, you need to put on your “big boy” pants and act respectful.  Heck, the next thing we’ll see is teenagers wearing diapers and pooping their pants on a cross country flight.  How would you like to sit next to that mess on a five hour flight?

So grown up and stop wearing your pajamas around like they are a pair of jeans.  Society made sweatpants so you could wear pajama style clothes in public.  Sweatpants are marginal more acceptable to wear in public.  You really should wear sweatpants when you are working out at the gym or jogging in the park.

Places I don’t want to see you wearing your pajamas:

At my kids’ school

Grocery stores

Gas stations

Post Office

Shopping malls

7-11

Liquor stores

Pizza parlors (really any kind of restaurants)

Again: Grow up, wear some jeans, some khaki slacks, or even a kilt or skirt.  Leave the pajamas at home so I can keep my lunch down.  Just give me one day where I don’t get grossed out by your lack of compassion to my sensitive stomach.pajamas in public

Why it is OK to Scare Kids…(and other big babies)

My wife tends to disagree with me on some of my parenting theories.  She thinks that I shouldn’t be the big, bad, scary and intimidating father to my daughter’s (who is age 13) friends.  I, of course, disagree.  I’m not mean, big, bad or scary to my daughter’s female friends…just to her little male friends.

I want those kids to fear me.  I want them to know that if they mess with my little girl that they will have to deal with me.  Is that really wrong?  To be honest, I’m not threating them or verbally scaring them….I just look scary.  That is the key…look scary to future suitors.  Nothing wrong with looking scary, right?

Sure, I’m a very articulate individual who enjoys a good conversation but sometimes the best thing to do is to keep your mouth shut.  He who talks first, loses right?  I want to be that father that is sitting in his chair when the daughter comes in with her friends and the boy just looks at me and knows he should be fearful.  He should think “Hmm, I probably don’t want to upset her dad…he just looks scary.”

It isn’t like my daughter is dating so I shouldn’t worry….yet.  However, why not plan for the future and lay the foundation now.  The farmer doesn’t wait until the summer to plant his crops; he plants his seeds in the winter.  I’m planning for the future.  I’m planting the seeds of fear and respect in the minds of these 11 year old boys now so they know not to mess with me (or my daughter later).  Hopefully, when they get into middle school and high school my reputation as a scary, frightening father grows into an almost unbelievable legend that will be passed down from generation to generation.

Of course, my professional as a school photographer isn’t exactly a job that scares kids.  I also don’t have any tattoos, nor do I talk “ghetto” or “white trash”.  The best I can do is speak Hawaiian Pidgin English from my school days on Kauai.  Furthermore, it’s not like I’m from SEAL Team Six or on the SWAT team. The only scary thing about me is my bald head and the fact I practice aikido (a non-violent martial art).  I suppose someone unfamiliar with it could possibly think I am a weapon of death and destruction.

Any thoughts on making myself a little bit more intimidating to the youth of today?  Any tips, suggestions, ideas?  Come on….leave a comment or two!  And thanks for reading!

Kauai, Maui, Sunny March Weather in Seattle! Oh My!

IMG_5778Yesterday, we had some beautiful sunny March weather here in Seattle. I was actually out on my back deck enjoying the sunshine and working on my suntan. It must have been about 65-70 degrees out. Even after we “sprung” ahead into Daylight Savings Time, I got some stuff around the house accomplished. So spending a few minutes on the back deck with my wife and daughter was a treat that was well deserved.

We usually, have pretty gray weather around here in March but not lately. Last week, we went hiking in the sun.   I have been able to preserve my Hawaii tan for a lot longer than I thought I would. Yes, dear readers, I was gone for two weeks to Hawaii in February. I spent a week on Kauai with my daughter visiting my parents and then we flew to Maui and join my wife and my son for another week. Life is rough.

My last trip to Hawaii was two years ago and that was to Kauai. I haven’t been to Maui in 15 years. To be honest, both are wonderful places but I prefer Kauai. I admit I lean towards Kauai (since I went to school there and lived on Kauai as a teenager). My wife likes Maui because she use to live there. As I always say, Hawaii is a great place to visit but not as fun to live there.

Koi Fish Pond

Koi Fish Pond

What? How can I say that? How can I say Hawaii isn’t an awesome place to live? When you take a vacation, everything is awesome. I’m relaxed, I don’t worry about money, and I’m living in a nice condo resort with hot tubs, swimming pools, and sunny beaches. I picture myself relaxing and drinking every day of my life if I lived in Hawaii. Heck, every time I’m on vacation I think how wonderful it would be to live in Washington, NYC, Eastern Washington, etc. Where ever I am at, I can picture me enjoying living there. My family and I would be hanging out at the pool every day. In reality, you have to work or you would be retired. Ah, retirement. But you would be doing the same thing as you would be doing now. Just in a warmer, humid climate.

Now, I’m not turning down the opportunity to move to Kauai or Hawaii in general if someone offered me a job there. Both my wife and I know what it is like to live there.   But rest assured dear readers, I’m still a few years away from retirement, I haven’t won the lottery, and my online business hasn’t taken off where I can retire from school photography just yet.

Do you have a place you wish you could move to? What is holding you back from moving or even taking a vacation?Kaua'i -  The Garden Isle

It’s OK to Be Selfish

Do you sometimes put yourself on the back burner? Does your family come first at the sacrifice of your own well being?

I’ve noticed that a lot of people are making the commitment to lose weight and improve their health. I’m in the same boat. I’m working on dropping weight and trimming down. I want to be selfish and feel better about myself. But is it really being selfish?

You don’t get into shape only for yourself. You get back into shape for your loved ones. You do it for your spouse, your kids, your family. You want to be healthy so you can be with them for years to come, to drive them nuts and crazy with your oddness, your creativity, your love.

So be a little selfish. Do something for yourself that will benefit you and your family. It can anything: working out, reading a self help book, painting a photo, whatever. Just do a little selfish act that makes you happy and helps you improve your well being. Because when you are happy, your family will be happy.

Thanks for reading!

The Holidays are here…Are You Ready?

I have to admit, I don’t feel stressed out about the holiday season…yet. We have all the parties scheduled on the family calendar and my wife has figured out the gifts for the kids. I was even proactive and purchased my wife’s Christmas gift for her this past week (a week ahead of schedule). I have pretty much given up on guessing what she wanted about ten years ago. I ask her to create a list for me so I can avoid feeling like an idiot on Christmas morning. Honey, you don’t like the gun rack I got for you? Camo ain’t your favorite color for a nightgown?

Some wives would say “You should know me by now and know exactly what I want”. Really? Isn’t that a recipe for disaster? Would you trust your husband?  This is the same guy who burns water and can’t cook a hot dog correctly.  I know who I am: I’m a moron when it comes to gifts and presents. My wife is way too smart to leave her present up to chance. She knows I am clueless when it comes to gifts. Sure, you can buy your wife a new car, a diamond necklace, or maybe even plan a trip to Kauai and you would be safe. But can a husband really think what his wife wants? No, he can’t. Those gifts are fool proof. Who wouldn’t want those things?

Yes, I’m safe and sane when it comes to the gift department. Why try to disappoint my wife? She doesn’t deserve to be disappointed (seriously, being married to me is already a disappointment). Let her enjoy Christmas morning with a gift she really wants. The wish list makes life so much easier and safer. Of course, I must admit those fuzzy Hello Kitty bathroom slippers would look pretty good on her feet….

Enjoy your day!

Kevin Hellriegel

Merry Christmas!

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