Monday, December 31, 2007

We be going squirrel hunting

Dahs-1 got a little pair of binoculars from my parents this year. He loves them and wears them around his neck so he always has them handy. He came up to me yesterday and asked if we could go outside to look at birds. It was a freak 50 degrees so I was more then happy to take advantage of the outside time.

We were outside walking up the hill after feeding the cows and he looked up at me and this was the conversation:

"Mommy lets go squirrel hunting"

"Bubba (my affectionate nickname for him) you want to do what?"

"squirrel hunting mommy, we find the squirrels and then we say HELLLLLOOOOOOO SQUIRRELS!"

And off we went squirrel hunting. I think the squirrels we found would have been less terrified had we just shot at them!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

I've been thinking...

This summer while Flyboy was out of the country, unreachable, except email on the best days, there was a death in the family. While talking to my FIL to see how he was holding up (it was his older sister) we had a very interesting conversation. My FIL's sister did die before her time, although I suppose in a way we all will, she was in her late sixties and had led a full life. I couldn't help but think about all the young men and women in uniform that have died much younger, far far before their time. Just before flyboy had left on his excursion a young Marine he knew had been killed in Iraq, barely on earth for 2 full decades. A young soul.

My FIL is a gristly retired Marine gunny so I brought this point up to him. I told him that I had noticed since marrying into the military my frame of mind and thinking have changed a bit. I have noticed that I see the world a little different. I don't think I'm some hardened soul or anything like that. But rather I have learned to appreciate and cherish what I have. I have learned to put life into perspective.

When my civilian friends are sitting around complaining over and over again about their husbands and how they don't do this or that at home I think to myself, at least your husband is home. It could be worse, your husband could be away flying around somewhere not sure when he'll be home, of course then I think, it could be worse he could be in Iraq, and then it could really be worse and he could not be coming home. I'm hardly a perfect person, I get angry and mad and frustrated but try to catch myself and remind myself what life could be like. I have tried offering that tidbit up to my mommy friends but it didn't go over so well so I just tune out the husband bashing and keep my well intentioned comments to myself.

The military has helped me to appreciate the daily things I might have other wise taken for granted. Fall is spectacular up here. We have a large maple tree out front that turned the most amazing shade of orange. Everyday I would stare up at the tree, my gaze could get lost in that tree for as long as the kids would let it. Almost every time I looked at that tree I thought how lucky I was that I was here to stare get to take in its beauty and how I betcha there were people elsewhere in the world serving who would kill to get a view like mine. I never complained about leaves all over the yard come November.

I find myself making the best of the time that we are together as a family. If I have learned nothing else in this marriage its to expect the unexpected from the Marine Corps. Who knows if flyboy will be here for next Christmas or our next anniversary. We should make the most of the time we spend together and the moments we celebrate.

Life presents learning opportunities in various ways. I'm just realizing that a big life lesson for me has come via USMC.

I am also realizing that you have to be open to life to learn from it.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Bargain Basement Cammies

Flyboy left for work early this morning looking smashingly sexy in his new cammies. I felt like a mommy sending her kid off to school looking all fresh at the beginning of the year, I wanted to take a picture but he told me to stick the camera somewhere if you catch my drift. Its not like I haven't seen him in cammies before. I've seen him in the old ones, the new ones, the desert ones, you pick the style we have them. But while he was away over the summer and fall he lost so much weight that his digitals were HUGE on him. I mean they looked ridiculous on him. They just hung all boxy making his high and tight head look itty bitty. So he asked me to get him some new ones. I looked at the price and thought I was going to have a heart attack. Seriously those things are not exactly chump change, but then again I redefine cheap.

Well I couldn't find them up here, our seven day store on "base" is tiny and has nothing. Really I have seen 7 Eleven's bigger then this place. And our commissary and exchange are on an Army base so no luck there with uniforms. Now I realize that you can order then online, I had tried this over and over but he needed a really common size so they were perpetually back ordered. My other solution turned out to be brilliant. My aunt and uncle (a retired Marine) live in SC right outside Parris Island Recruit Depot. While flyboy was away I had already planned to go visit my aunt so I figured I would make a whole laundry list of uniform things I needed, cammies being at the top of the list.

I still couldn't find his size. Too common. But the lady in the store told me about re-sales. This is where they resell cammies from guys who, for whatever reason, left boot camp. Most had never even worn their uniforms, they still had the creases in them. Let me tell you the price. EIGHT DOLLARS! Eight dollar blouse and Eight dollar pants. CAN YOU BEAT THAT?! Now I am kicking myself because I only bought one pair because I wasn't sure what flyboy would say about resale uniforms. To my relief he thinks its a great thing and we are probably going to make a pit stop at PI in Jan to pick up some more.

If there are any Marine wives who read this post and you are down near Parris Island (or I'm sure they have a similar thing at the Recruit Depot in SD) you should definitely ask about this. Its in the regular uniform shop next to the "new" uniforms. Very much worth the extra time to sift thru them. But then again like I said, I redefine cheap.

I'm sure this seems like an odd post. I just had to share my cammie joy with others. These cammies have become my baby. I left them at the cleaners to get name tapes put on and when they messed up I found myself getting very protective of them. Flyboy tells me I need to let go. He also keeps telling me that under no circumstance is he going to pose with a sign saying "All these cost me were 19 bucks" so I could scrap book it.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Santa shops at Target

With Dash-1 fast approaching three Flyboy was so excited for him to "get" the Santa concept. I've learned to temper my expectations a little but that comes with having logged 75% more time with them, but getting on with the story. Flyboy kept going over and over the whole Santa thing with Dash-1 (dont worry we have lots of books and talk about the REAL meaning of Christmas). When he woke up Christmas morning and came into our room, flyboy FLEW (pun intended) out of bed to take Dash-1 downstairs to see what Santa had left him.

When we got downstairs Dash-1's eyes got huge, there sitting under the tree was the rocket ship he had wanted. Flyboy excitedly tells him that Santa brought that for him. Dash-1 without missing a beat looks at him and says, "I saw that at Target." Flyboy explained that Santa sometimes picks toys out of the store, something about contracting out, he just goes on and on.

I snorted my OJ out of my nose when I heard Dash-1's reply..... "Well, everyone shops at Target you know!"

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas thoughts....

Merry Christmas!

With two little ones in our house it was a nonstop day, but as I finally get to sit down in peace and quiet I am thinking about how very grateful I am. So far this year we have spent what seems like so much time apart but yet we were together today. Lucky, lucky, lucky us.

So many military families are apart today. Moms and dads, sons and daughters, sisters and brothers off somewhere, willing to be apart from their families to protect and serve. I hardly know what runs thru my dear husband's mind when he is away but I cant imagine it is easy. But yet they do it. Thank you for your heart, thank you for your strength, thank you for your pride and thank you for your commitment.

To all serving, to all who are waiting for someone to come home, to all who are missing someone who will never come home, simply put.... thank you.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Sad but yet Feel Good News

I saw this story on Foxnews and I started to tear up. Now I'm a sap but you'd have to be cold hearted not to be touched by this. I can only imagine how much this must mean to the family of the fallen Marine.

Proof positive that the Marine Corps really does have a heart. And althought it may not always seem like, really does take care of their own, be it family or four legged friend.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,317830,00.html

P.S. I Love You

I'm saw an ad for a movie last night, I couldn't see what it was about, the volume was down and I couldn't find the remote quick enough but I did catch the title and it made me think about flyboy. P.S. I Love You.

Today is our fifth wedding anniversary. I'm not sure how much of that we have actually spent together, I don't think I'll hazard a guess it would either make me laugh or depress me. But its been a wonderful five years. The first thing I realized about marriage is that it is not as easy as my parents made it look. Yikes. Every day stresses, let alone the stress of deployments, loneliness, constant change, and lack of control seep into every day life. We fight, we argue, we even go to bed mad sometimes, but we just deal. For better or worse.

I cant imagine life without my love. He said once that we are the same shade of gray. We think similarly, we laugh at the same stupid stuff (although I DO NOT find the fart jokes funny). He lets me watch the stupid crap (his words) on TV that I like. Really, how many husbands will sit with their wife and watch America's Next Top Model? He kills the hairy spiders, he scrapes the ice off my car before heading into work at 6 am, and he will even do the dishes. He might not always be around but he always puts us first in his heart.

Five years, two beautiful little boys and so much more in life to come. I cant even begin to imagine what life has in store for us. But at least I know that we will, with God's blessing, face it together.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Leave request

Flyboy put in his leave request today for a little family trip down to the south for a family get together of sorts. I am thrilled that we get to travel together, we always have fun on car trips and that I actually get to have a spouse at one of these things. I'm usually the only one there without a husband, in fact I think most of my family thinks that flyboy might be a figment of my imagination. Flyboy is always notably missing from family trips and I am damn near giddy that we might have a family fun trip in just four weeks!!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

be my best friend forever?

How could any mother turn down that request from the most adorable blond haired blue eyed two year old? Having my little one look up at me with his big eyes gleaming and then reach out to hold my hand makes all the trials of motherhood worth it.

Postal rant

Well its really not so much a rant about the post office, I love our local post office. It's a small town post office in every sense of the word. They know the boys and always have a bin of lollipops for Dash-1 to pick from, they are always so cheerful and polite. My problem is with the other people.

I went in to mail my last minute Christmas packages as well as a few packages for SA Baking Angels (for those of you who are not familiar with Soldiers Angel's its a great way to reach out and let deployed or injured military folks know that people at home care.) Anyways, I was piled high with boxes, and let me tell you home baked goodies are not light. I have a bit of a system, carry Dash-2 and anything going to be mailed and then Dash-1 carries anything that is light enough and NON BREAKABLE (this is the most important qualifier for him).

Well we were both piled up. I was trying to get the door and would you know that two people TWO PEOPLE went thru the door pushing me out of the way! And then they couldn't even be bothered hold it so I could then get in. I tried to do the whole shove my foot and then my rear in to hold the door. And I'll have you know I did say excuse me several times and even Dash-1 was saying "cuse mommy, cuse mommy". I don't know if they really didn't hear me, see me or if they just didn't care.

I've noticed that a lot lately. It seems like people don't go out of their way (or even when its on the way!) to help out others. I've even had someone tell me once that it would be easier if I came to the post office without my kids. YA THINK!?! Alas, my kids are my posse and go where I go. But really is it that hard to see someone struggling with the door and help them out?

Since having kids and dealing with obtrusive strollers and fussy kids, I've come to sympathize more with people who just don't have enough hands and need a little help. Wouldn't it be great if everyone tried to help out, in just a small way, at least one person a day?

Monday, December 17, 2007

Whats on your walls?

Do accountants hang pictures of numbers and calculators on the walls?

I only ask this because flyboy is very excited that the lithograph prints of his airplane have come in and he's planning on where to hang it once we get it framed. To make it even more exciting for flyboy (as if a lithograph of an airplane ISN'T exciting enough, I mean really!) It's the plane he flew during his first deployment, one of the first airplanes to cross Iraqi airspace. So he would like to get some of his pics from that time framed with the print.

Any who I drift. As I look around the office I see pictures of airplanes, one of his favorite pictures is a framed on of the Enola Gay signed by the pilot, theres a pic of Mt. Suribachi with actual sand from Iwo Jima he was lucky enough to bring home during a trip; patches from various squadrons. The rest of our home is hardly a shrine to the Marine Corps but I do have to wonder how many people have empty .50 cal rounds or a picture of their husband on a really big gun in the desert on a bookshelf in their bedroom? Or one of the Iraqi most wanted posters that flyboy is upset I wont let him hang up in the kids play room because I think its a tad on the oh I dont know... spooky side.

I started thinking and to my relief we aren't the only ones like this. My father in law is a retired Marine and their house really is a shrine to the Marine Corps and his airplane. If it has an eagle globe and anchor on it they have it. My uncle is a retired Marine and his wife has decorated the house very beautifully in a low country style, but still the glass collection that they have is antique Naval Academy glass and the plates hanging artfully on the wall are Marine Corps plates. And his office is just a snapshot of his career, my aunt calls it his ME room. I suppose everyone needs one of those.

I certainly don't think this is just a Marine thing. My Army friends have similar issues. I asked a Coast Guard friend of mine if she had pictures of boats all over her house, she looked at me without any question as to why I would ask and said "Nope, ropes and knots. Oh well I guess we do have a few of his boat". The fact that she didn't look at me like my head was on backwards is what got me wondering about all this.

I know that other people don't really hang up what they do for a living. I think sometimes this is where the military and what you do starts to seep into your being. Its not just a nine to five job, its part of who flyboy is. He puts up a good front about being able to just walk away at some point, but I know its part of him. This is always going to follow us around. The pictures of airplanes will always be on the walls and perhaps when the kids are older the Iraqi most wanted will hang somewhere too.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

A first in our house...

Our first ear infection.

Dash-1 (knock on wood) has NEVER EVER had an ear infection, now he's had a lot of other things but never this. Dash-2 went to his well baby check up the other day at the army hospital where we get our services and was given the "atta boy" until... they looked into his right ear. Apparently it was a good thing he had an appointment because his ear was bulging. Sigh. I felt like a horrible mother. Thankfully we have a great pediatrician and he was very kind about it. These things happen he said, with some kids you cant really tell. I still felt like (and continue) to feel like a moron.

Dash-1 always pulled at his ears and fussed, I must have dragged him down once a month and they always checked out ok. Dash-2 had been getting over and then getting again a very nasty cold which turned into croup, so while he was up at night he hadn't been pulling or tugging at his ears so I never put two and two together. And for those who arent familiar with army medicine the same day appointments..... MYTH. Oh sure they apparently have them but they are as elusive as big foot. So I knew we were going down for an appointment I figured I would let the cold run its course.

My poor little one. He's on antibiotics and some numbing ear drops hopefully the ear infection is already cleared up. He isn't sleeping well but I'm hoping its the excitement of having flyboy around. But other then that he did look great at his appointment, 19 lbs 4 oz 28 inches long. Now all he needs is some hair.....

Friday, December 14, 2007

home again

Flyboy was putting Dash-1 to bed tonight and told him that he would be here in the morning when he wakes up. Dash-1 looked up at him and said "You don't need to wait until morning, I'm just going to take a nap."

My faith in Marine Aviation is even higher tonight as I sit next to a sleeping flyboy. He made it home last night, after the boys were asleep, which allowed us to have a nice quiet (albeit late) dinner together. Its always kind of strange to have him back. He really hasn't been home much, a couple days here or there, never long enough to get fully into a routine. Its always as if he's just visiting. I think thats what prompted Dash-1's comment and the reason it took him a full hour to get in bed and he would only close his eyes while flyboy sat with him. Poor kid thinks that dad is going away when he falls asleep. (This isn't really a theory as Dash-1 said "don't fly daddy" when flyboy told him to get in bed for the 15th time)

Poor flyboy sometimes feels like he's making the boys pay for his choices. My heart breaks for him sometimes. I can tell he's torn. Torn by a job that he believes in and a feeling that he is missing out on too much. Military families may serve in a different way, but they very much serve.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

being grateful for a friend

Talk about a peaceful day. Dash-1 has been a great big brother, sharing and playing so nicely with Dash-2, who seems to be feeling better and has taken TWO nice long naps today. We played in the snow, made a rocket ship out of a big cardboard box, watched cartoons, made cookies, all in all a delightful day.

I was looking at my friends blog during Dash-2 nap while Dash-1 cuddled with me watching some cartoon involving singing animals. When I started my blog I talked her into starting one as well. (Winter of discontent, linked on the side, its a funny, slightly snippy take on her life), safety in numbers perhaps! Anywho, she wrote a little bit about Soldier's Angels and her adopted soldier. She wrote about how grateful she was for the service they do for all of us. It made me start to think about being grateful for people and wondering if they realize how much we appreciate all they do.

This friend is my rock. She truly is my sanity saver, the person I run to to lean on, to cry with, to vent too, to laugh with (and yes... at), to look for guidance; she is my dry spot during a storm. And given the military lifestyle, there are many storms. I know that I can say whatever I need to get off my chest and nothing will be judged or held against me. She's hardly a yes ma'am, but thats the beauty of our friendship, she tells me what I need to hear not want to hear.

Of course my flyboy is many of these things too but thats what makes my sweet friend so special, she fills the void that flyboy cant much of the time.

I remember when we were first married flyboy was deployed within a month. I was in a new state, we didn't live in housing so I knew not a soul around me, she called every night to check on me. The first time I was in the shower she called until I finally answered. She wanted to make sure I was ok given my rather irrational fear at the time that something would happen to me and no one would know until flyboy finally returned home (stupid I know, I have moved on from this).

But thats the kind of friend she is. She doesn't understand our families lifestyles and hardships 100%, but she is always there for me. She understands when we hibernate for a day or two when flyboy first comes home after long trips, she knows that its not as easy to make plans given the fluidity of the military, she just gets it.

We share our birthday, I'm not sure if that has anything to do with us being such like souls. We've known each other for ten years this September, we've been through breakups, crappy jobs (we both shared a job in college in which they took our scissors away from us. oh the shame), we were in each others weddings, shes the first I called to tell I was pregnant (and then pregnant again).

She's my second half, my non-flyboy soul mate. And I hope she knows just a fraction of how much she means to me. The world would certainly be a much scarier, lonelier place without her friendship.

Thank you my dear.

Snow and lots to come

Twenty minutes. Its been snowing for twenty minutes. And we already have a solid inch and a half.

*sigh*

Flyboy was hoping to come home tonight but they are calling for a foot of snow and while I have full faith in my husband and Marine Corps Aviation, I am also a realist.

But it is nice to look at. A little less nice to dig out from but nice to look at. And I'll be able to get some great shots of the boys playing in the snow later I'm sure. Nothing like a great photo opt!
**Update** Its been snowing for over six hours and we are up to almost 7 inches. The forcast calls for snow until late tonight. We'll see what the final totals are. Flyboy did take off they are hoping to be able to land and not have to divert elsewhere. Fingers crossed!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

What in the world...

Ah. The kids are down for naps, well I hear Dash-1 talking to his airplanes upstairs but its good enough for me, so I got online to take care of some bills and check up on the news. What do I see on Fox News but this.



Before launching into my tirade I should mention that these are being sold in the JUNIORS department. Really?!?! Am I just to old and fuddy duddy to find these amusing? The justification for printing these up was that they were a holiday line of panties, they apparently say "When you have Santa" across the arse. I have to say that doesn't much change my stance on them. I am the furthest thing from a liberal feminist but I am shocked that anyone, that any company, thought that these would be something that should be sold to kids and teenagers. What a thing to tell young girls. Maybe they should only be sold in size zero so we can make them more body conscious too?

Thankfully more parents out there saw these and flipped out so Wal-Mart is now pulling them from the shelves. So maybe the world hasn't totally lost its common sense.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Way to go guys.

I know that there is probably some very complicated formula used to come up with the newly adjusted BAH rates. Well heres what I have to say to it. BLLAHHH yes thats very mature of me but really. Our rates went down, almost 10%. And while the market is supposedly "correcting" itself ummmm yeah, not up here, not that much. This is one of those frustrating times when you look around you and wonder how they come to these numbers. Unless of course your rates go up, then smile, smile big!

Check out the link if you haven't checked on your own rates.
http://perdiem.hqda.pentagon.mil/perdiem/bah.html

Why do I find this amusing?

Flyboy called me and said that he had a little tidbit for me that he thought I would find amusing. He said he was talking to work yesterday trying to coordinate their new arrival date and a new guy had checked into the squadron while he was gone. His last name, Marine.

If I told you his first name it'd be even funnier but I wont do that. For some reason that made my night. I dont know why, I just find this amusing. And flyboy knew it. Man he knows me like a book.

Simple pleasures for simple people.

Monday, December 10, 2007

How many uniforms does one Marine need?!

After I put the kidlets down for a rare (but much needed) simultaneous naps. I went into the playroom/junk room to search for some missing xmas presents. I've done such a good job hiding them that I cant find them. Anywhere.

I went digging and digging and it seemed that the more I dug around, the more uniforms I came upon. Flyboy has a wardrobe that houses a great deal of his uniform stuff that needs to hang nice and neat, his alphas, blues, khaki short sleeve shirts, khaki long sleeve, ties, overcoat... I know there is more in there that I didn't even look at. Then you get to the trunks, desert cammies, woodland cammies, poncho, cammie boats, boonie covers, regular covers, not to mention he still has some old style cammies laying around in a trunk that he hasn't figured out what to do with. So I come upon another trunk, thinking maybe Flyboy put the xmas presents in there (I found some in a trunk so it was a hopeful guess) MORE UNIFORMS. Flight suits. Desert tan and the regular green ones and another set of boots to wear with flight suits. And this is just the overflow room. All his pt gear, green shirts, boot socks, everyday flight suits and some other things are in our bedroom.

Of course we have new cammies to add to the pile. Flyboy has kicked his running and working out into high gear on his past few trips and has gotten into even better shape so now his cammies are all too big. So as we speak the smaller cammies are at the base getting name tapes sewn on. (I would be sewing them on myself but I know my limitations.) I told Flyboy that he cant lose anymore weight, we simply cant store anymore uniforms. He replied that hes looking into getting a set of Mess Dress. Pretty soon his uniforms are going to need their own big room in our house, a corner will no longer cut it. And lets not get started on their uniform "accessories".

The funny thing is that with all these uniforms he wears a simple flightsuit 99% of the time.

Feel Good News from Fox

Wife Enlists in Army to Take Place of Husband Wounded in Iraq
Sunday, December 09, 2007 - AP
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,316252,00.html


SAN ANTONIO — More than a year after Spc. Alejandro Albarran lost part of his right leg in an explosion in Iraq, he still hasn't decided whether he'll stay in the Army.
"Right now, I'm leaning against it," said the 20-year-old infantryman, looking ahead with distaste to a possible desk job.
Whatever he decides, he won't be leaving Army life behind — because his wife has enlisted to take his place in uniform.
"After everything he's gone through — and he loves the Army — he kind of inspired me," said Janay Albarran. "I made him a promise that I would finish what he started."
While he underwent five-day-a-week rehabilitation to recover his balance and strength on a prosthetic leg at an Army rehabilitation facility in
San Antonio, she was in boot camp at Fort Jackson, S.C., learning to shoot a rifle and stand in formation.
Janay Albarran graduated from basic training on Friday, gaining the rank of private. The couple's 2-year-old daughter is staying with a grandmother in
Arizona.
Roughly 24,000 of the Army's soldiers, about 9 percent of the force, are married to other soldiers. The Army doesn't have any statistics on how many join after a spouse or family member is badly wounded in combat, but a spokeswoman, Maj. Anne Edgecomb, said she's heard of people joining after the injury or death of a sibling and at least one woman who joined after her husband was killed in combat.


"The courage of our soldiers and their families is remarkable," she said.
Janay Albarran, 19, wasn't always thrilled with the prospect of Army life. She met her husband at a high school football game in Yuma, Ariz., near where they grew up, and learned later from his online profile that he had already signed up for the Army.
"I was like 'Well, I met somebody and he's about to leave.' I was a little upset," said Janay Albarran. "I knew he was joining the Army and we're at war."
The couple married in February 2006, and he was sent to
Iraq six months later.
In November 2006, Alejandro Albarran was in a
Humvee escorting a unit to the scene of a detonated bomb when a second bomb exploded. After that, he remembers only flashes: a medic over him, the helicopter.
Janay Albarran met him at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington several days later, and they went to Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, where some of the most severely wounded are treated.
Efforts to save Alejandro Albarran's lower right leg were unsuccessful. When the pain became too great, he told his wife to let the doctors amputate.
At first, Janay Albarran had to help her husband dress and get out his wheelchair.
"She had to be my memory. My short term memory is bad," said Alejandro, who also suffered a head injury in the blast.
As he regained more mobility, the teen wife who had been afraid of guns decided to take her husband's place in the ranks.
Strictly speaking, Janay Albarran will not be replacing her husband. He was an infantryman, a position not open to women, although he notes with chagrin that she outscored him on her basic training rifle test.
She expects to get a
human resources assignment, one less likely to lead to deployment in Iraq.
"It's just another job," Alejandro Albarran said, taking a break between weight lifting sets at the large amputee rehab facility here.
However, a safe assignment isn't guaranteed, and Janay Albarran said she worries about possible deployment when she thinks about their daughter, Iliana.
"That's the only thing that scares me. He's already been hurt," she said. "If I do get deployed, I'm going to miss him so much. But it's nothing I can't handle."

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Word of wisdom

At breakfast this morning I spilled some juice, nothing big I just said "Oh shoot" (swear to you thats all I said). Then it came. The words of wisdom from DASH-1 who will be three in Feb.

"Well mommy"

"Yes baby"

"Sometimes you have to have patience."

Then he started meditating. He squeezes his eyes shut, pinches his thumb and forefingers together and says "YUMMMMMMMMMMMMMM"

If he starts doing yoga during nap time I might worry.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

MSSDS

We all know the military loves its acronyms so I made one of my own.

Military Spouse Self Doubt Syndrome.

I often feel like I have this. Especially after reading my last post. With all thats going on in the world, I feel like an ass for feeling down about Flyboy not coming home as planned. When he called to tell me I hardly went ballistic or anything, in fact I said, "That sucks do you have enough clean underwear?".

But I feel bad for feeling bad. If that makes any sense. As if because I'm a military spouse I should be keeping the home fires burning without ever getting bummed and if I do then I must not be a true military spouse. Someone from the Marine Corps might come over and take away my membership card!

I just hope that I'm in good company, that others have their moments, that I'm not alone with this. And I hope no one takes my membership card away.... crappy picture and all its mine all mine.

Yet again....

I feel like I should out a disclaimer on this post. Blogger is pissy.

Hubby, who shall hence forth be known as flyboy, just called to say that there is no salvaging this weekend. It's looking like weds/thurs at the earliest before he's home. Again I know he could be deployed for months on end, but he was just away for months on end and this was supposed to be a slow month. From Feb. till now we are knocking on the door of eight months apart (he was kind enough to figure it out last night. a tad depressing) I was really hoping this trip would go smoothly and he would be home when he first told me he would. We had big plans for this weekend. The reinforcements (my parents) were coming up and we were going to spend some very much needed one on one time. We were going to go down to the city and be obnoxious tourist together, get some last minute xmas shopping done, eat dinner out without little ones. All while the kiddies were in the competent hands of their adoring grandparents. Not that we cant try to do these things later. Try being the optimum word!

So today I have some free time to myself. My mother came by to take the little ones swimming at the hotel pool. Dash-1 is so excited to get to go swimming when there is snow on the ground! Its the reason they stayed at a hotel, well that and they thought flyboy would be here and they wanted to give us our privacy. But anyways, the house is empty. The house is NEVER empty. At least not when I'm still here! I have to admit I don't know what to do with myself. I have wrapped some gifts, folded some laundry, watched some tv that isn't animated or doesn't have singing characters. I even ran to the post office sans kids. It was so odd. So strange to just get in and out of the car without my posse in tow. We live just outside a quaint little village and flyboy and I have yet to really explore it. It's mostly antique stores and little cafes, not really the thing do check out with little ones with little hands, every time my parents come up we say we want to go get some coffee and walk around. And every time, he's a no show, off flying somewhere. So I did it by myself. Checked out the shops and got a little lunch at the deli, I just sat in the quiet and read my book. In a little bit I'm off for a pedicure. I might pee myself with excitement.

So I started the post pissy, I wouldn't say I'm pissy anymore. A little disappointed but this is the life we lead. We always come first in his heart, I never question that, we just cant always be together.

Friday, December 7, 2007

66 years ago

7:53 am on December 7, 1941. The attack lasted just two hours and 2 minutes, 2,403 lives were lost.

The following is an excerpt of the speech President Franklin Roosevelt gave to the American people the day after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Words of determination that were spoken in another time about another war but should be remembered today.

"As Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy, I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense.


But always will our whole nation remember the character of the onslaught against us. No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.


I believe that I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us.


Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory and our interests are in grave danger.


With confidence in our armed forces - with the unbounding determination of our people - we will gain the inevitable triumph - so help us God. "

- President Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Thursday, December 6, 2007

yet again

Hubby was supposed to be home tonight. We were going to keep the boys up a little late so we could have cake and open presents. As always, change in plans. Whenever something seems like its rolling along the Marine Corps (substitute Army, Navy, Air Force, National Guard, or just life in general here) swoops in to disrupt everything. He's not going to be home today or tomorrow. Maybe Saturday. I know this doesn't seem like much, and in the grand scheme of life its not. Its just has me bummed. I know Dash-2 wont remember or realize that daddy's not around. It just gets frustrating when so much of your life is in the hands of the Marine Corps (again substitute appropriate service branch here). Make do with what you have. And that we did. Sam had a little cupcake, the bigger airplane cake will be when hubby gets home, he smashed it all over and went to town.

The reinforcements, aka my parents, are coming up this weekend. YAH! They wanted to see the boys and give hubby and I some time alone together. Well at least I'll get time alone. And hopefully hubby will be home in time to maybe get some dinner and finish up some Christmas shopping.

The big ONE

My baby is one.

As of 11:44 am today. Geez that year FLEW by. Don't get me wrong, there have been plenty of nights at 12:30, 1:45, 2:20, 4:30, and 5:15 that I thought for a moment it wasn't going fast enough. But now here we are a whole year later. Dash-2 is an excellent little guy, hes not nearly as intense as his brother. He's much more interested in sitting back and taking everything in. Now this being said, he's just as active as Dash-1, just as much of a handful, but in a much different way. I thought it would take time before I would see the difference in them but the second they handed me my little bundle I could see his personality. Very laid back, very chill, but with that twinkle in his eye letting you know that he knows how to get you if he needs too. And now as he's getting bigger and starting to really move on his own he's not quite as cuddly. The world is more exciting for him to explore on his own.

It's tough as a momma. You want them to grow up but you want them to stay little and in your arms forever. You know its your job to help them grow and become good, strong, responsible young men. Raise them up and then send them off to find their place in life but I didn't realize it would be so hard. And my baby is only one! Hardly ready to strike off on his own!

Thank you Dash-2 for blessing my life this year! And thank you God for the blessings of two little beautiful boys.

Happy Birthday my little love

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Craft attack

I was going to head off to bed but due to the incompetence of the dish network, I still have yet to receive my replacement cable box for my bedroom so I'm still hanging out down stairs. I hate going upstairs before I'm absolutely ready to fall asleep. If not I hear every sound in this big old farmhouse. So instead I'm sitting down stairs looking at the tree trying to figure out where to go from here decorations wise. We moved into this house exactly a year and three days ago and were so busy moving and welcoming a new baby that we decorated but didn't really go all out for the holidays. This year I really want to do the house up nice. This place is a perfect holiday house. But I don't know where to start. We have our tree up. And it looks lovely. Its tied to the wall after a nasty tumble last year broke more ornaments then I care to think about right now.

I love to craft and be creative, but I'm very timid about it. I hate to think about doing something and then it ending up messy or crappy looking. Not a great trait in a crafter. I have angst when I set out to do something. It drives hubby crazy. He keeps saying "toss up some garland call it a day". ACK! What if its not full enough or sheds or looks very clearly fake? Use real stuff is his answer. Well that brings a whole new set of problems. I've never touched real garland. Is it going to mess up our 150 something year old original banister? Is it going to dry out? Will I spend the money on it only to put it all up and not like the way it looks? Seriously, I don't think your supposed to have panic attacks over Christmas decorations.

I wanted to clear off the mantels and put up sprigs and candles, but where to put the pictures (everything in the house has to be high up or littles ones touch things!) and I cant seem to find unscented plain pillar candles. I have visions of poinsettias going down the stairs and around the bottom of the banister. But have you priced a poinsettias lately... what's all this is going to cost? I am so cheap its not even funny.

Blah. I have such grand plans in my head. I think I'm going to start a poinsettia garden to cut down on cost for next year.

That's a bannana dear

I rarely buy produce at the commissary. As Marine Wife pointed in one of her post, its usually slim pickins. At our commissary I would go so far as to say icky but thats not the main point of the post. So we were picking up some produce at Super Walmart, who would have thunk it that super walmart would have some great produce, and I placed the bananas in the back of the cart where Dash-1 was sitting. As we are shopping around the store (wondering... shopping... all the same) I hear Dash-1 talking to someone. This isn't that strange, the kid has not met a situation that silences him! But I kept thinking that I heard him say daddy. I look around Dash-2 to see Dash-1 talking into a banana, pretending its a telephone. He was asking daddy for a puppy to take care of.

Sidenote, we are NOT getting a puppy.

I told him that daddy couldn't hear him on a banana but he strongly disagreed. He went on to give daddy a running commentary of our trip around walmart, via the banana.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

It must be hard for him too.

We had the first real snow of the season a few days ago. Nothing major for us here, only about three inches or so, but for Dash-1 you would have thought it was a winter wonderland. Last year he wasn't as into the snow, he didn't want to get all dressed up to go out and play in it despite how excited hubby was. And for Dash-2 well he was just an itty bitty thing so no snow play for him either. Well this year Dash-1 saw the snow and actually started to undress in the hallway, right then and there. So of course I got the boys all bundled up and out we went. And of course the camera too! We had a blast. I mean it was a great time. There are moments when you can step back and watch your children experience something and you get to experience it through them. This was one of those times. Dash-1 was just running up and down our long driveway, rolling around in the yard, scooping up the snow and blowing it out of his hands. Enjoying being a kid. Dash-2 was crawling around trying to see from under his hood. I've never seen such a small kid move so fast in a snow suit! It was wonderful to watch the two of them. How lucky I was that I got to be there for it. And how unlucky for hubby to have missed it.

I am thinking about this because tonight as hubby rejoined our hemisphere and is back in the world of phones and Internet he was able to view the photos. One of the first things I said was "Oh did you see the pics? I got some great shots! The boys were adorable!". The longing in his voice said it all "It looks like you guys had fun". And then he sighed.

I tend to always think, no kiddies waking him up at night, no explosive poops to deal with, able to go to the bathroom without an audience, a little vacation from us doesn't sound so bad. But I need to remember that I'm the lucky one who gets hugs and kisses all day, to share in every first, to laugh with them (and at them!), to hold their hands and kiss their boo boos. I'd say the good far outweighs the bad. How lucky I am to have a sweet husband who does so much so that I can be here for our boys. I always think how hard it is for me but it must be really hard for him too.

*Update* adorable pic!
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Say again?

"Mommy you have a ginormous, extra big, butt"

This was what Dash-1 can in to tell me this morning as I was getting him some breakfast. I thought I heard him correctly but I had to turn around, kneel down to his level and ask him if he could say again please.

"Mommy you have a ginormous, extra big, butt"

And to make it even better, this time he affectionately slapped my rear. I just stared at him. I wanted to laugh but I knew I probably shouldn't encourage this. I knelt down again and asked where he heard this. "Oh around" As if the kids in the sandbox are ALL talking about my butt, which to my defense I don't think is GINORMOUS. But I guess maybe from his angle, I dunno. I explained that we don't say things like that, especially not to mommy. After all she makes your breakfast and picks out your clothes. And can talk to daddy about buying you a car later in life. But keep the butt comments coming and its the bus for you kiddo.

huh?!

Civilian moms say the darnedest things. The one that I seem to keep hearing that makes me scratch my head every time is regarding hubby and having to work. I cant tell you the number of times I have heard "You mean he has to work when he isn't flying?". I typically just look at people with a dumbfounded look on my face when they say this. OF COURSE HE WORKS!?! And he works LONG days. He's out of the house by 6:30 (we only live 20 mins from work) and maybe home by 5-5:30. That's a long day in my book.

First I guess I should explain that our lives are a little different then most others in the military. Hubby isn't gone for 6 solid months at a time, although this summer it was pretty darn close, some trips are 2 1/2 months, some are 4 days. He is constantly coming and going. Home for 5 days, gone for 10, home again for a week, gone for 3 days, and so on and so forth. I've really considered putting a revolving door in our house to make it easier. All told since Feb of this year he's been away for about seven and a half months. I'm sure there are some out there that think this sounds way better then being gone for a chunk of time. I'm not so sure, maybe its the grass is greener syndrome but lately its getting harder on the boys and I, the constant coming and going. We get into a nice routine and then hubby comes home and tries to fit himself back in and then in no time is gone again. Its made potty training a nightmare!

But I drift from my original rant. So I guess the civilian moms in my playgroup assumed that when hubby isn't flying he's sitting at home drinking margaritas. One mom actually said "Oh its nice that you get to spend all that time with him" (a tad of a snotty tone too). Man that's a twisted view of the military. I tried to explain to them that while flying is his job, so is sitting in an office and dealing with everyday bullshit. Uncle Sam doesn't pay him to look pretty after all. I've thought about carrying around a fact sheet on the military to hand out at the park to keep this from happening. When I told it to hubby he just laughed. In fact he keeps laughing about it.

Monday, December 3, 2007

meal time at the zoo

I have fallen into a not so great habit while hubby is away. I live just a small step above a frat boy. Dash-1 and Dash-2 don't really eat "people" food, well I take that back, Dash-1 doesn't, Dash-2 eats whatever trots by slow enough. Dash-1 is a very picky eater, made more complicated by several food allergies and Dash-2 only has a handful of teeth so while he'd be content to mash on anything I fix him things that he can gum well. I've taken to fixing dinner for the boys and doing an interesting dance of sitting with them and hopping up and down to get things done here and there. (It's much easier to get things done with one in a highchair and one strapped into a booster seat!) And then I eat on my own later enjoying my tasty frozen dinner in the peace and quiet of the house.

So most nights it leaves me to find something to eat on my own. Here's where the lean cuisines come in. They are a life saver and not so bad either. But lately as hubby is flying around more and more and is home less and less, the real meals are few and far between. Until tonight. Tonight I mad a real meal. Steak, mashed potatoes, peas and carrots. YUM. Dash-1 helped make the potatoes (although he wouldn't eat them) and then the boys and I sat down to a lovely dinner. (They had hot dogs, peas and carrots yummo) The conversation was good, Dash-1 proceeded to ask how my day was no less then 20 times and told me about his trip to the grocery store (we didn't go to the grocery store).

But something was still missing. I miss hubby at dinner time the most. Every night when he is home we eat as a family. Its the highlight of my day. Despite Dash-1 whining about not wanting to eat and not liking anything mommy touches (take a number kiddo) and Dash-2 being loud (he's fully into the loud stage) its the time of day that we sit down as a family and hubby and I get to talk and enjoy being just the four of us. There is something very lonely about when its the three of us. But at least the meal was good and it wasn't from the freezer.

Postsecret

Today is monday which means that postsecret was updated yesterday! This site is amazing and I always think that maybe this will be the week that I make up a postcard to send off. So who knows maybe this will be the week.


Anyways if you haven't yet check out the site. I promise you will become addicted too.
http://postsecret.blogspot.com/

Sunday, December 2, 2007

The boys

I figure introductions are in order since the crux of my life are my two little ones. And will no doubt have starring roles in many post! I am my kids mom, both boys, both handfuls, both adorable in every way. Dash-1 is almost three, he is of course the ring leader of the zoo that is our household. He is constantly running at full speed and it looks like Dash-2 is hot on his heels. Dash-2 will be one later this week. That will be a whole separate post on where the time has gone I'm sure.

If you are wondering where the dash thing came from when I was pregnant with Dash-1 hubby was deployed on a beach getaway (sans the ocean of course!) and apparently started referring to the then child-to-be as dash with his coworkers. So it stuck and was used on Dash-2 and is used now when we talk about a possible Dash-3. We have even joked about actually naming a child Dash but the mother in me tells me that our children shouldn't be the butt of our jokes! Right now though Dash-1 and 2 are keeping me on my toes enough for the time being.

Why you ask....

Over the past few months during hubby's insane travel schedule (in military terms that would be never home) I started reading some military spouse blogs. I would read them and get not two lines into a post and think "that's my life". The military lifestyle isn't one that everyone can understand. It's hard to explain it to the other moms at the playground. Being stationed here is tough, there isn't a huge base with tons of military spouses trying to be mom and dad who can relate, rather I am trying to balance the military and civilian parts of my life. Its rough and lonely. Very lonely. So that being said, I thought blogging would be a great way to find some harmony in my mind and thoughts.