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Recap of Second Chance Books Author Signing

Author Signing at Second Chance Books 2020

We had a successful day at Second Chance Books for the author signing. We sold eight books in all – three “There Are No Penguins in Alaska,” three “Polly Penguin Wants to Fly,” and two “Adventures on the Amur: The Treasure of Nikolai Nikolaevich.” Thanks to the team at Second Chance Books for offering us the venue.

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‘Escape from Magic Valley’ for a Glimpse at Migrant Worker Life

white flowers in tilt shift lens

Escape from Magic Valley” (affiliate link) by Ricardo S. Rivera is an autobiographical book about his childhood in the 1950s in a migrant worker family. Rivera says that he wrote this book for his family, so they could know his history and through it learn about their own. However, Rivera did much more than write for his family, he gifted that story to us.

Rivera’s book takes us from his early days in Texas through to the University of Oregon for the High School Equivalency Program. Rivera details the fun times of his childhood and the abuse and racism he experienced. As a child he was part of a collective that picked cotton, onions, cherries and other crops. They also fished. (The book has my name in it as they use “shad” for bait.)

Rivera’s take on the Texas school system is none too flattering as he is met with unreasonable demands, prejudiced principals, and teachers who belittled the Hispanic students. Corporal punishment was readily and, sometimes, eagerly distributed for the slightest of provocations, including misspelling words and speaking Spanish.

Not all the teachers were bad, but those that were made school hell for anyone with brown skin. “Escape from Magic Valley” provides a glimpse into a lifestyle that most of us will never know. Take a trip back in time and find out how migrant farmers made a life in spite of the hardships they faced, both in their own families and in the world at large.

I purchased this book at Second Chance Books in Independence, Oregon. If you’re in the area, stop by and grab a copy. It is also available at (The last is an affiliate link. If you purchase the book from Amazon using this link, it doesn’t cost you anything more, and it supports our website. Thank you.)

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If it’s too good to be true… How I Almost Got Scammed

How I almost got scammed in housing

I was almost scammed today. Last week, I made inquires about available housing on the coast. After finding out that I wasn’t eligible for a loan because I’m an entrepreneur and the rules changed two years ago to make it more difficult for entrepreneurs to get home loans, I started looking at rental properties. I sent out multiple emails and made several calls. Rental agencies didn’t get back to me. The one that I was able to get on the phone said he had a one-year waitlist for one-bedroom apartments and a three-year waitlist for three bedrooms. I contacted more places and received the same sound of silence.

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Local Author to Sign Books at Second Chance Books in Independence

second chance book signing

On Saturday, Sep 12, 2020 from 10 am to 2 pm, Local Author Shad Engkilterra will be signing copies of his books in front of Second Chance Books on Main Street in Independence from 10 am to 2 pm. Shad has written 11 books for all ages; come by and get the books that are right for you.

Children of all ages will like “There Are No Penguins in Alaska.” Color the pages while learning about the animals that people find in Alaska. The humor at the end will keep you smiling. Shad has also written “Polly Penguin Wants to Fly,” the story of a young penguin taken with the idea of being able to fly. It’s meant for parents to read to their children.

For those from 8 to 11 and for fans of Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys, the Adventures on the Amur series is two great adventure stories that take place in Far East Russia. Explore a little history and enjoy Steve and Irina’s adventures as they search for “the Treasure of Nikolai Nikolaevich” or learn firsthand about “the Curse of the Golden Kopeck.”

Young adults, and people who dislike bureaucracy, will love “The Pirate Union,” which explores what would happen if bureaucracy regulated pirate activities. This comedy with a 1990’s sensibility promises magic, puns, and fun as the crew of the Jolly Rogue tries to find out what the nefarious P.U. is up to.

Want to know what it was like growing up poor in the 1980s? “My Life in the Projects” is the mostly true story of how I survived living in government housing as a child.

For nonfiction fans, “Disneyland Is Creativity” and “the Haunted Mansion Is Creativity” offer looks at Disneyland and the Haunted Mansion with an eye toward creativity principles. Take a tour of the Happiest place on Earth and let Walt’s dream bring you greater joy and inspiration through greater creativity, or go through the Haunted Mansion as your Ghost Host leads you on a tour of the beloved attraction while materializing habits to become more creative.

If you need a bathroom reader or are looking for activities to improve your creativity and life, “Tales at an Alaskan Cabin,” “Penguinate! Short Stories and Essays” and “Penguinate! The Disney Company” are the books for you. These collections of short stories and essays provide suggestions for activities to do after each section. Penguinating is the power of positive creativity.

People who join our Patreon will get $1 off for every $10 or more purchased. Join today and support a local author.

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Photos from the Oregon Coast

Sea Lion in Lincoln City on the Oregon coast

While we are putting in the miles to find a place to rent/buy, we’re taking photos, too! Our target is someplace on the Oregon Coast that takes cats. Ultimately, we’d like to buy our own place and open a store/studios. So far, we like Yachats to Lincoln City, and Garibaldi to Gearhart. Lincoln City, Yachats, Newport, Seaside, Cannon Beach, and Rockaway Beach are pretty cool. While we were told we couldn’t qualify for a loan (because we’ve been out of the country), we are still hoping to find a place to rent.

Living on the coast would allow us to build our network and make the connections we need to be successful in the future. It would also provide a nice backdrop for our creative endeavors. Join us at Patreon — you get some great content, and you’ll help make our dream a reality. Our studios and store can use a few good investors. Get a penguin and have a companion to travel with.

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‘Love Is Like This’ Grants New Perspectives on Love

Self-isolation spreads the love

Within the first three pages of “Love Is Like This” by Nathan Deeter, you know you’re holding a work of paramount importance in your hand. This will show you the ways of love in the past, future, and present. It contains the love of sons and fathers, family, husband and wife, and it does so in the way that those kinds of love present themselves. It isn’t the “happily ever after,” but it also isn’t the doom and gloom. It presents the light and the dark of love, and if you let it, it will speak to your soul.

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Disney Paper Parks Online Magic for You to Color

Partners Statue at Disneyland

The Disney Parks Blog has been releasing Paper Parks during the quarantine. These templates are drawn by Disney artists. You can download them, print them, color them and then assemble them into your very own Disneyland. (Part 3 is Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland.) For Disney fans, this is an amazing opportunity to build their own parks in real life. (Disney Magic Kingdoms allows them to build one in virtual life.)

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Sit before You Go: A Russian Travel Tradition

Confused cat on couch: Why do you have to sit before you go?

The first time my wife and I traveled on a long trip together, our bags were packed by the door, we were ready to go, and I reached for the door handle. She grabbed my arm and led me to the couch. “Let’s sit.”

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Tillamook’s Dream House and Other Considerations of Our Journey

three people standing near seashore viewing cliff covered with fogs

Within the next 24 hours, we will begin our journey back to the U.S. This has been a long time coming. We originally applied for my wife’s green card in Sep. 2018. We had her interview in March of 2020, and we received her green card visa the day before the borders were shut here in Russia. We purchased tickets for July 24 and didn’t receive a refund but only airline credit – the privilege for that cost us $280 in website booking fees with another $280 due if we use the credit to book a flight. Our insurance also wasn’t refunded and was only good if we got sick or quarantined – not the entire country. Each weekend after that, we purchased tickets but made sure to get those that were refundable. Now comes the big flight and big move.

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Breathe in, Breathe out, Move on: Jimmy Buffett

Yoga is healthy and can be done alone

Jimmy Buffett’s ballad “Breathe in, Breathe Out, Move on” (affiliate link) starts with him purchasing a watch from a crazy man. The watch always told the correct time because there were no numbers on its face, just the word “Now.” How this never became a product, I have no idea. There are watches that feature the word “now,” but they also have moving hands, which would defeat the purpose of Jimmy Buffett’s watch.

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