Monday, December 31, 2007

How to make another me

H/T to Mrs. Who




The Recipe For sticks



3 parts Inspiration

2 parts Pizzazz

1 part Courage



Splash of Seductiveness



Shake vigorously

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Miles for My Marine

I am proud that my son is a Marine but the Military does not do things that make sense. Daredevil is being considered for recruiters assistance. That means, if approved, he will be able to come home and help his recruiter for up to 30 days. His school does not start until Jan. 22. He was given a letter of recommendation yesterday. It says he can start RA on 9 Dec but he has to be back on 2Jan. The return date can and probably will be extended by his recruiter to Jan 8th or 9th but only after he has arrived. So, we have to pay holiday price for a ticket that will most likely be changed. This means he will have to come up with $600 to $900 to come home, depending on where he departs. He is responsible for getting to the airport also. The closest airport is Palm Springs but he could also leave from Las Vegas or LA. If we could make it for returning on the 8th I could use my 28,000 American Airline miles and get him a "free ticket". But, because the return date has to be the 2nd, even though most likely it will be changed, AA wants 45,000 miles to get a ticket.

Anybody have any AA miles they want to donate? Any other ideas? Help, I need to get my Marine home for Christmas.



UPDATE: We ended up using my miles to get a round trip ticket for the dates he will most likely travel (Dec 9 and Jan 9) and then bought a one-way ticket for the 2nd which was required even though he probably won't use it then. But, I booked it through Southwest and they are good about changing tickets. So, he will probably have a one way ticket to Las Vegas to use later. That could be trouble. But, doing it that way we only spent $365 instead of the $890 it was going to cost. Now, he has to present it to his Command tomorrow and hope they approve it.

I'd like to give a hat tip to the operators at American Airlines. I spoke with four different women and everyone of them were extremely helpful, polite and sincere. They really worked hard searching schedules and prices for me trying to find the best option. AA has let me down in the past, but I can say that their customer service over the last two days was outstanding. Thank you ladies.

Also, a special thanks goes out to Tammi for her offer and willingness to help. Tammi, People like you restore faith in the world. Thank you.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Foreign Languages

Chowhound broke up with Miss Spilled Milk a few weeks ago. Basically, Chowhound was frustrated with her immaturity (she is only 15, he is 17). She keeps leaving him IM messages. She doesn't understand. He keeps trying to explain it to her. Over and over and over. We were discussing the situation and his frustration was quite apparent.

"I've tried explaining in every way I know how and she says she still doesn't understand. I guess I could trying saying it in a foreign language but I don't know how to speak "Woman". And, you can't help me because you don't know it either."

Well, I guess Chowhound and I can take classes together.

Course 1: Understanding A Woman's Language

Course 2: What your saying is not what she is hearing

Course 3: What she is really thinking

Course 4: Men rules that won't work with women so keep your mouth shut.

Course 5: Definitions by Gender (Formally titled: "You only thought you knew what that meant"

Advanced Students only can attend Relationship Advice From a Male Point of View. This is extremely advanced. This is a reference class only on what never to say or do. Warning: if this advice is used it could result in your remaining single for eternity or having your testicles rearranged.

or if Chowhound prefers he could send her to a few classes.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Dance, White boy, Dance

This is hilarious.

Projects for the Troops

The holiday season can be mentally and emotionally challenging for some. This is especially true for our Military. A great many of them are far from home and family. There are many projects underway to help make the season a little brighter. The little gifts and letters of support are great morale boosters. Here are a few of the many projects that are ongoing. Spread the word.

Marine Corps Moms (also known as Marine Corps Family Foundation) have several projects in the works. Operation Santa is attempting to send 25,000 stuffed stockings to the troops. They are close to their goal. Right now postage is the biggest problem. There are little groups all over the U.S. who have stockings ready to ship but lack the funds to ship them. Operation Santa is "going to the dogs" this year too. They need help providing stockings stuffed with dog treats and bones for the K-9 units.

Every day, there are nearly 700 recruits in the Support Battalions at the Marine Corps Recruit Depots in San Diego and Parris Island. These are recruits who have been separated from the regular training platoons for a variety of reasons-sickness, injury, the need for additional physical conditioning, and those who are being processed out of training. MarineMOMSonline is looking for donations and volunteers to provide stockings and items for this group. It is tough enough being in Boot Camp but to be held back during the holidays it can be especially tough.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Here's to the Heroes

Busch Gardens has a "Here's to the Heroes" program. It is good through the end of this year. I do not know if they will have it next year. An active duty military person can get a free one day admission for himself and up to 3 direct dependents to their various parks. It also says the Military member does not have to be present. Pass this information along.
This is the link to the main page http://herosalute.com/states/overview.html
and this is to the application page.
I wish I had known about this while my son was home on his 10 day leave. I found out about it through the USO site. My son was floored by the treatment the USO gave them at the LA airport. He couldn't believe how well they treated him.

Invisible Mom

A very good friend of mine, who has grown boys of her own, sent me the following story. It really hit home.

I'm Invisible

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of
response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room
while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store.
Inside I'm thinking, "Can't you see I'm on the phone?"
Obviously not; no one can see if I'm on the phone, or
cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head
in the corner, because no one can see me at all. I'm
invisible. The invisible Mom.

Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you
fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this?

Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human
being. I'm a clock to ask, "What time is it?" I'm a
satellite guide to answer, "What number is the Disney
Channel
?" I'm a car to order, "Right around 5:30, please."

I was certain that these were the hands that once held books
and the eyes that studied history and the mind that
graduated summa cum laude - but now they had disappeared
into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going,
she's going, she's gone!

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the
return of a friend from England. Janice had just gotten back
from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the
hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at
the others all put together so well. It was hard not to
compare and feel sorry for myself as I looked down at my
out-of-style dress; it was the only thing I could find that
was clean. My unwashed hair was pulled up in a hair clip and
I was afraid I could actually smell peanut butter in it. I
was feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a
beautifully wrapped package, and said, "I brought you this."
It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe. I wasn't
exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I re ad her
inscription: "To Charlotte, with admiration for the
greatness of what you are building when no one sees."

In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And
I would discover what would become for me, four
life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work:
No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no
record of their names. These builders gave their whole lives
for a work they would never see finished. They made great
sacrifices and expected no credit. The passion of their
building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw
everything.

A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to
visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a
workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was
puzzled and asked the man, "Why are you spending so much
time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by
the roof? No one will ever see it." And the workman replied,
"Because God sees."

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into
place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, "I
see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day,
even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you've
done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, is
too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building
a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will
become."

At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it
is not a disease that is erasing my life. It is the cure for
the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote
to my strong, stubborn pride. I keep the right perspective
when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people
who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to
work on something that their name will never be on. The
writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals
could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few
people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell
the friend he's bringing home from college for Thanksgiving,
"My mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies,
and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and
presses all the linens for the table." That would mean I'd
built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want him to
want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to
say to his friend, to add, "You're gonna love it there."

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be
seen if we're doing it right. And one day, it is very
possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we
have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the
world by the sacrifices of invisible women.

Great Job, MOM!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving to All

I'm wishing each and everyone of you the best of wishes and Holiday. Please say a prayer for our troops and all those that love them. The holidays are hard when you are away from family.

Daredevil made it safely to Twenty-nine Palms, CA. However, he is not allowed to leave the base and therefore has no family to spend Thanksgiving with. My heart cries for him. He has a 96hour liberty and nothing to do. And, to top everything off, his girlfriend of two years broke up with him and she didn't have to decency to tell him straight-up. He found out from someone else that she has been telling everyone she broke up with him. I know it will all work out but, damn it, that's my son. Nobody is allowed to hurt him. Nobody.

Chowhound and I are off first thing tomorrow to spend Thanksgiving with my Sweetie and his son. I will think of all you poor folks freezing as I bask in the Bahamian sun.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

World Travels for $200 Alex

In December, you can
sun yourself & attend
its Reggae Sumfest.

What is Manitoba?


BUZZZZZZZZZ! Wrong?!! I swear it sounded Caribbean to me.

Crap. Anyone have a parka and long johns I can borrow ?

I really need to think before I volunteer for things. They needed volunteers to help implement a program in one of our other mills. I said yes before I thought about what time of year it was. Manitoba. Cool, I've never been to Canada. Stupid. You wait and volunteer for there in the summer time. What the hell was I thinking?

I'll be in the Bahamas this weekend. My body is going to go into shock from the temp changes in the next two weeks.

"If I only had a brain" Where's the wizard when you need him?

MARINE CORPS ETIQUETTE

The Commandant of the Marine Corps was General Al Gray, a crusty old "Field Marine." He loved his Marines and often slipped into the mess hall wearing a faded old field jacket without any rank or insignia on it. He would go through the chow line just like a private. In this way, he was assured of being given the same rations that the lowest enlisted man received. And, woe be it to the mess officer if the food was found to be "unfit in quality or quantity." Upon becoming Commandant, General Gray was expected to do a great deal of formal entertaining... fancy dinner parties in full dress blue uniform. Now, the General would rather have been in the field eating cold "C-rats" around a fighting hole with a bunch of young "hard charging" Marines. But the General knew his duty and as a Marine he was determined to do it to the best of his ability. During these formal parties, a detachment of highly polished Marines from Eighth and Eye" (Marine Barracks located at 8th and I Streets in Washington, D.C., home of the Silent Drill Team) were detailed to assume the position of parade rest at various intervals around the ballroom where the festivities were being held. At some point during one of these affairs, a very refined, big-chested, blue-haired lady picked up a tray of pastries and went around the room offering confections to the guests. When she noticed these Marines in dress blues, standing like sculptures all around the room, she was moved with admiration. She knew that several of these men were fresh from our victory in Kuwait She made a beeline for the closest Lance Corporal, drew near him and asked, "Would you like pastry young man?" The young Marine snapped to attention and replied, "I don't eat that shit, Ma'am." Just as quickly, he resumed the position of parade rest. His gaze remained fixed on some distant point throughout the exchange. The fancy lady was completely taken aback! She blinked, her eyes widened, her mouth dropped open. So startled was she that she immediately began to doubt what she had heard. In a quivering voice she asked, "W-W-What did you say?" The Marine snapped back to the position of attention (like the arm of a mousetrap smacking it's wooden base). Then he said, "I don't eat that shit, Ma'am." And just as smartly as before, he moved back to the position of parade rest. This time, there was no doubt. The fancy lady immediately became incensed and felt insulted. After all, here she was an important lady, taking the time to offer something nice to this enlisted man (well below her station in life), and he had the nerve to say THAT to HER! She exclaimed, "Well! I never...!" The lady remembered that she had met that military man in charge of all these 'soldiers' earlier. She spotted General Gray from across the room. He had a cigar clenched between his teeth and a camouflaged canteen cup full of bourbon in his left hand. He was talking to a group of 1st and 2nd Lieutenants. So blue haired lady went straight over to the Commandant and interrupted."General, I offered some pastry to that young man over there, and do you know what he told me?" General Gray cocked his eyebrow, took the cigar out of his mouth and said, "Well, no Ma'am, I don't." The lady took in a deep breath, confident that she was adequately expressing with her body language her considerable rage and indignation. As she wagged her head in cadence with her words, and she paused between each word for effect, "He said, 'I - don't - eat - that - shit - Ma'am!'"The lieutenants were in a state of near apoplexy. A couple of them choked back chuckles, and turned their heads to avoid having their smirks detected. The next thought that most of them had was, "God, I hope it wasn't one of MY Marines! " and the color left their faces. General Gray wrinkled his brow, cut his eyes in the direction of the lieutenants, put his free hand to his chin and muttered a subdued, "Hummm Which one did you say it was Ma'am?," the General asked. "That tall sturdy one right over there near the window, General," the woman said with smug satisfaction. One of the lieutenants began to look sick and put a hand on the wall for support. General Gray, seemed deep in thought, hand still to his chin, wrinkled brow. Suddenly, he looked up and his expression changed to one indicating he had made a decision.He looked the fancy lady right in the eyes and said, "Well, fuck him then, don't give him any."

Friendship

True friendship is an awesome relationship. It is deep rooted in your soul. That type of friend is hard to come by. I am fortunate enough to have several. One of them being VWBug. She is a blessing in my life. We have been friends since we were 13 or 14 (so that would be like 7 or 8 years, right?).

I stole the following poem from Lemon Stand-Lemonade Made Daily.

A simple friend, when visiting, acts like a guest.
A real friend opens your refrigerator and helps himself and doesn't feel even the least bit weird shutting your 'beer/Pepsi drawer' with her foot!

A simple friend has never seen you cry.
A real friend shoulder is soggy from your tears..

A simple friend doesn't know your parents' first names.
A real friend has their phone numbers in his address book.

A simple friend brings a bottle of wine to your party.
A real friend comes early to help you cook and stays late to help you clean.

A simple friend hates it when you call after they've gone to bed.
A real friend asks you why you took so long to call.

A simple friend seeks to talk with you about your problems.
A real friend seeks to help you with your problems.

A simple friend wonders about your romantic history.
A real friend could blackmail you with it!

A simple friend thinks the friendship is over when you have an argument.
A real friend calls you after you had a fight.

A simple friend expects you to always be there for them.
A real friend expects to always be there for you!

Yesterday, VWBug gave me a friendship award. I am honored that she considers me a friend. And surprised to because I'm always picking on her. I dedicate this poem to her as well as the recipients of my Friendship Award.

I'm going to do things a little different here. The people I am honored to call a friend are not bloggers. But, they do grace this blog and my life with their presence. So, I present The Colors of Friendship award to:

Tweety: She is beauty defined. She wears her heart on her sleeve, will give you the shirt off her back, and give her heart a million times over.

Linnaya: You are probably the strongest, most determined person I know. I am so proud of you and all that you have accomplished in spite of the obstacles in your path.

Nora: You are wonderful. Don't ever forget that.

VWBug: Thanks for being in my life.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

PTSD is not an unfamiliar term for me. I have dealt with it for years because of the physical and sexual abuse that was a part of my up bringing.

Blackfive has the best description and understanding of it I have ever read.

What you need to know, first and last, is that so-called PTSD is not an illness. It is a normal condition for people who have been through what you have been through. The instinct to kill and war is native to humanity. It is very deeply rooted in me, as it is in you. We have rules and customs to restrain it, so that sometimes we may have peace. What you are experiencing is not an illness, but the awareness of what human nature is like deep down. It is the awareness of what life is like without the walls that protect civilization.

Those who have never been outside those walls don't know: they can't see. The walls form their horizon. You know what lays beyond them, and can't forget it. (emphasis mine)

In the above quote he is referring to the effects of the war. But, he goes on to describe how it is a response to any situation of danger. Read the entire post. It is excellent.

For years, I tried to explain it to people. I just couldn't do it in a way that made sense to them because they did not have the experience I had. They had never been "outside the walls". It is hard to learn to trust and let go of survival skills once you are no longer in the critical situation. The things you do ensured your survival. PTSD is just learning to re-direct your survival instincts.

As child I never had a sound sleep in my bed. Never. I could not go to sleep and trust that someone would take care of me while I rested. I was always aware of every slight movement and every quiet sound. Therefore, I was tired all of the time. This led to a host of other problems but this awareness was necessary. It was pertinent to my "survival". I had to know when my step-dad was creeping into my room in the middle of the night. It is self-preservation. My best sleep was had when I would drift off while watching TV on the couch in the living room. This was an open area where he could easily be caught. So, I was a little safer if someone was home. Plus, I was fully dressed and that made it more difficult. Anything to make things difficult and give me time to wake up if I had fallen asleep. The couch became my sanctuary. It was a place that I could relax enough to sleep.

This worked for me until I got married. I still could not sleep very well in my bed. Especially, now that there was a person in it who wanted to touch me and at times those touches were sexual. Just because the situation was changed and the danger element no longer existed didn't mean my internal behavior patterns were changed. I consciously worked on this issue and I tried to explain but he couldn't understand. He took it personal. There were many arguments because I would sleep on the couch. Most people argue and then sleep on the couch. I had the opposite problem. I needed to sleep on the couch sometimes. I couldn't get sleep otherwise. He would rant and rave because I was not in bed with him. My survival technique wasn't needed any more since the danger element was removed. But, I couldn't make the switch. Not easily or quickly, that is. It has taken years of conscious effort and finding the right person to trust. I have seen outside the walls. Sex is not wrong. It is a vital and important part of a relationship. In a marriage it creates a bond. But, there are relationships where it is not permitable. Trust is destroyed when it is inappropriate and forced.

PTSD, or whatever label you want to call survival, is real. If someone you know has been in an extreme condition, please take the time to listen and understand. It is difficult to come back inside the walls with the images and the knowledge that is stored within your soul. Be comforting, patient, open and honest. Do not berate them or criticize. Don't take it personal. Most of all give them time. Time to adjust. Time to learn to set aside skills that they don't need anymore. Remember, if they hadn't had and used those survival techniques when it was necessary, they wouldn't be with you now. Congratulate them on a job well done and welcome them home.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Let's Bring them home

I know we just did the fund raising for Valour It. But, I have another important cause that needs help. Let's Bring them Home. There are soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines who don't have the funds to go home for the holidays. These are the junior enlisted military personnel. This is an excerpt from their site.

I want to take a minute and remind everyone of the purpose behind LBEH. We are not for the war in Iraq, nor are we against it. We are not Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, Green or Independent. Our motives serve not to change world events, or your perception of them. Our mission is as simple, as it is noble. All we want to do is unite a few military families for the Christmas holiday. That's it. No hidden agendas, no political speeches. We just buy plane tickets for troops. Period.

Last year we raised over $75,000 and helped 150 soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines go home for Christmas. This year we'd like to do the same, and we need your help to do it! Remember, your donations are tax deductible!

Each year the names change, but the song remains the same. Each year we receive ticket requests from young soldiers, airmen, sailors and Marines. Each not wanting to spend a holiday alone in their dorms, and hoping that we can help get them home to see their families. Each year I receive heart wrenching emails from a young female soldier who was forced to send her children to live with their grandparents, while she fulfilled her military duties. And now the only thing she wants for Christmas is to be able to give her children presents in person. Are you going to tell her no? Each year a young soldier fresh out of boot camp pines for the chance to spend just one more holiday with his parents before beginning a long deployment to the Middle East. Will he come home in once piece? Will he come home at all? I don't know. But what if this is his last Christmas? Wouldn't you want to spend it with loved ones, and not with the concrete walls of a dormitory? And you Marine Moms! I'm always amazed at how many mothers of Marines will write in and ask if they can request a ticket on their child's behalf, because their son or daughter is in the field and can't do it themselves. Battle trained Devil Dogs they may be, but sometimes they still a little need help from Mom. And rest assured folks, nothing but heartbreak and disappointment await these fine people. You heard me. Nothing but heartbreak and disappointment await these fine people unless you and I do something about it.

I have already seen posts on some of the Marine Boards from a mother trying to find a way to get her Marine home for the holidays. One mother is trying to get her son from Camp Lejeune, NC to Boise, ID. Another mother who is in Tampa has invited other Marines to her home since her son can't be there. The support within the Marine community is tremendous. I could not have made it through these last four months without my "Marine Mom" sisters. It is a bond that is unbelievable. That's why it breaks my heart to think of someone not making it home for Thanksgiving or Christmas because they don't have enough money. These people make sacrifices for us every day. I know it's the holidays and money is tight. But, please if you do nothing more than post a plea and a link on your blog it will be a start.

My Marine, Daredevil, will not be home for the holidays. He doesn't get that option this year. He will graduate MCT on Tuesday and then head straight for Twenty-nine Palms, CA. It breaks my heart that he will not be with family. But, then again, he is with his Marine family.

Also, I have an e-mail from one mom whose son is in Iraq. He has a buddy that gets no mail or packages. She has requested assistance. If anyone is interested in helping, I can send her your information.

I read posts daily from two Marine Mom sites. Every day I cry. Sometimes I put off checking my mail. Someone is planning a funeral. Someone else came down with cancer. But, everyone pulls together to get through it and that is why I read them even though they tear me up. I love this group and community and I want to help them any way I can.

Please, spread the word so our service men and women can enjoy their holidays as much as we will enjoy ours.

Thanks.

Crap

I screwed up my blog trying to fix it. I'll fix it later. I have too many other important things to do like letting the dog out for the 50 millionth time in the last hour. I see where this day is headed. Wish me luck.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Don't take advice on women from Mom

My boys are in so much trouble when it comes to relationships. That is, if they need advice.

I am not a foo-foo prim and proper typical female. To quote Bou, "I so suck at being female" (I can't find where she said it but I know it came from her). I am a very practical minded person. I can go off on tangents from time to time but typically I don't act "female". I am not a fashion conscious person. I don't give a rat's ass about designer anything. I can't even name the designers. I look at practicality and price when I buy something. I don't normally get something because I like how it looks.

Anyway, Chowhound is IMing back and forth with his girlfriend. (I really love this girlfriend's parents because she is always on restriction for something or other. This makes my life so much easier and free of teen relationship worries.) The computer is set up on a desk in the kitchen. I was cooking dinner and he was chatting.

"Oh, no!" I look over my shoulder and he is shaking his head. "I don't know what to say to that."

"What?" I say because inquiring minds want to know and mother's especially.

"She is mad. Somebody got chocolate milk on her purse. I need advice. What do I say?"

"Tell her don't cry over spilled milk?" Apparently, I haven't used that expression much in the last 17 years because this blank look came over his face and he shook his head.

"I am in so much trouble. I should know better than to ask you for advice."

He typed back, "I don't know what to say to that."

Oh, no. The poor boy is doomed. I try giving my motherly advice but he just laughs and shakes his head.

She responds, "why not"

I tell him to write, "because I have testicles."

He's banging his head in his palms now. "Why can't I have a normal mother like everyone else?"

I type for him, "because I am male." I use the edited version, After all, this isn't my kid. She may not be used to such vulgarities.

He scrambles to the computer and quickly lets her know, "that was my mom."

I am having so much fun messing with my kid's life.

She lets him know "that is no excuse". Sorry guys, testicles won't get you out of trouble only in it.

He is still at a loss for words. I eagerly supply them. "Oh, good now you get to go shopping for a new one." The child has lost his mind because he actually takes my advice.

That doesn't get him anywhere, "NO! I HATE SHOPPING."

"Well, then wash it. They make stuff to get it out."

This goes on and on and on. No matter what he says she keeps getting madder and madder.

He just doesn't understand. She loves this purse. "It's lime green and chocolate milk stains."

"Getting mad won't help so what's the point."

At this point, my sides are killing me. I'm doubled over trying to cook dinner. He paces the room throwing his hands up in air. He bangs his forehead on the refrigerator. I keep handing him "shovels". He gets in deeper and deeper.

"If you're going to keep digging holes make sure it is big enough to be comfortable in because you're going to be there for a long time." I get glares at this tidbit of advice.

Every five seconds he asks, "When is dinner going to be ready." He is fishing for excuses to end the conversation.

"Not for a long time, I'm having way too much fun at your expense. I want to see you get out of this one."

Sometimes being a mom is so much fun.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Boys will be boys




I bet the last thing their mother said as they slammed the front door to go out to play was, "Stay out of the water!"

Monday, November 05, 2007

Adventures in Exuma

It's a little island that nobody in the news takes notice of. Homes get flooded and no one sends help. No media flock to the island. The residents just pull together and get through it. I'm talking about Great Exuma in the Bahamas and the wide spread flooding caused by tropical storm Noel. In rained hard for 63 straight hours. It dumped more than 50 inches of rain. (Don't hold me to these figures. I'm going by what I was told. I don't know if any official records are kept.) The local DJ drowned while trying to get to work. I didn't see CNN, FOX, Red Cross, or anyone with pumps, food or anything.

I arrived Friday afternoon. The rain had finally stopped sometime Thursday. My fiance was a nervous wreck when he greeted me at the airport.
This is the main road. This picture was taken Sunday morning. It was still impassable. He drove through this Friday. He was determined to pick me up from the airport. The water washed over the hood of this Dodge. He thought he was going to ruin his company truck and miss my flight. But, he loves me dearly and "come hell or high water" he was there. But, he knew better than to try the lake again. I get to the airport and he is trying desperately to find an alternate route.

Now, there are only a few paved roads in Exuma. The main road runs the length of the island which is approximately 20 miles, maybe. There were several sections that were more than 6 feet deep. Some friends of ours sunk his brand new dually and they had to be rescued by a passing tractor trailer (w/o a trailer). They stood on the fifth wheel with water lapping at their shins and watched as a Ford Explorer floated by.

Anyways, I knew that the island was flooded in parts but until I arrived I didn't know how bad. I met a lady on the plan who had her vacation plans changed mid-stream. Her flight to Nassau was delayed for four days so she decided to visit friends in Exuma. They couldn't get to the airport to pick her up. She was traveling alone in an unfamiliar place so I volunteer our services. So, my Sweetie is all stressed out and I arrive announcing that we are giving some stranger a ride.

Luckily, the residents had worked together and created an alternate route to town. First, we went through this little puddle.
Then through part of this one. We turn right just before the telephone pole.
Through, this brand new road.
Through this neighborhood. This picture was actually taken Sunday when I was returning to the airport. Friday, the water was half-way up the car. You can see the watermarks on the house.
Oh no, now we have to go down a hill and make a left. It looked pretty steep from where we were but it turned out not to be so bad.

Our poor "passenger". She was grateful beyond words but she was scared. We dropped her off at the local grocery store to wait on her ride. There were other people waiting too. The ones who weren't lucky enough to have someone brave the flooded roads for them had to catch the local semis and big trucks to get through. I'm sure this impressed the folks spending thousands of dollars to stay at the Four Seasons. Instead of their usual vans, Lincolns or limos, they had their guest take the trucks and the school buses. The trucks would get them through to the buses waiting on the other side of the flooded areas.

We had riders in the back of the truck all weekend. It was wonderful how everyone helped each other.

I'll have more pictures and stories tomorrow. I have a great story about our dive trip.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

How do you mend a broken heart

Life is about changes. That part of life never changes. My role as a Mom is rapidly changing. I can no longer kiss the boo-boos away. I can't rush a child to the emergency room and have his broken heart bandaged or stitched.

I choke back the tears, put on my best Mom face, the one of courage and hope, and fix things the only way I know how. I made brownies. I don't know what else to do.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Can I have one of these?

My Marine!

Daredevil is officially a United States Marine!


He looked so handsome in his uniform for graduation today. I just wanted to show him off. But, no. He went for comfort. I'm driving towards the main gate. I look over he is in his whitey-tightys hanging his uniform up. We are still on the base. We were barely out of the parking lot. I'm praying, "Please don't let us get pulled over for something" while laughing. We've done the change clothes routine while driving down the road for years. Marching band teaches you that. That part didn't surprise me any. I laughed because hanging up the uniform took precedence over getting dressed. In the past the clothes just got thrown on the floorboard. Now, thanks to the Marines, he takes pride in his appearance.

I figured after being gone from his girlfriend for three months she would be the first person he went to see when he got home. No. He gets home. Irons his uniform and puts it back on. Yes, the same uniform he couldn't wait to get out of three hours earlier. Then he goes to the Elementary school to see his favorite teacher. (So, Mrs. Who, and the other teachers out there. Know this, you make a great impact on your students. ) His fourth grade teacher was more important to him than seeing his girlfriend. The principal recognized him too. I'm not sure if that was a good sign or not. We evidently spent way too much time in that man's office.

It's strange looking at my boys and not seeing boys any more.


Chowhound, Daredevil and Improviser


Monday, October 15, 2007

I found my theme song

I have an awful memory. I forget things so easily. Well, important things anyhow. Useless crap I can remember forever. I roared when I listened to this video because I was shaking my head in agreement almost the entire time. I lose my car eyes. My car. My to do list. On occasion I've lost my kids. But, dam it that was on purpose and they found me almost right away. But, take a listen to this, I'm sure you will see yourself if not now in the future.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Getting close now

In just a few hours Daredevil will be a Marine. The crucible is almost complete. He will be rewarded with his Eagle, Globe, and Anchor and then a warrior breakfast. Congratulations to all of Echo Company 2nd Bn and Oscar Co 4th Bn. (Oscar Company is the females. Those girls have guts.)

In five days, I get to put my arms around him in the biggest hug he has ever gotten. Then the next day, I will bring my Marine home.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

live blogging from VWBug

I'm here at the Bug's house playing with Tater and Tot. It is such a wonderful happy place to be. The boys are delightful and getting so big. I can't believe how much they have grown.

More later.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Quote of the Week

From a co-worker sitting at the desk next to mine, "My brain just isn't working right today. I'm thinking."

I paused to see if it was "I'm thinking..." I waited for more. Nope that was it. End of sentence. Evidently, on a normal day when her brain is working right she doesn't think.

And no she isn't blond. She a brunette.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Changing Jobs--NOT

I'm following the crowd just because I don't feel like thinking at the moment. So, I took the "What should you be doing for a living" quiz.

Mine ended in a three way tie and I had to answer a tie breaker question. Apparently, there is little difference between a Pretty Princess (which is what I got-ha ha), a Mafia Boss, and a Pirate Captain. Which stands to reason if you think of the "Hollywood glamor girls" as princesses. Yeah, no morals at all.


What should you be doing for a living?!
created with QuizFarm.com
You scored as Pretty Princess

You're a pretty princess!! You're sensitive, pretty, and love to be pampered. I hope you're a chick, but if you're not...well quit you're job and marry a prince anyway!!

Pretty Princess

45%

Pirate Captain

45%

Mafia Boss

45%

An Old Prospector

43%

Drug Lord

38%

Cowboy Outlaw

38%

Ninja Assassin

25%

Break-dancing Machine

5%

Sunday, September 30, 2007

I'm a survivor


The coffee pot is brewing and it is loud as hell this morning for some reason. I feel hungover and I don't even drink. I think it was the staying up past 1:30am chatting with T1G and Bloodspite after everybody else left. I'm not a late night person. This is the latest I've stayed up since I don't know when. The blog crawl 2007 last night was a blast. There wasn't a bunch of participants but it was a friendly crowd. Unless, you live in Valifornia then it got ugly at times. Those people out there are so sensitive. (Don't pout, T1G, you only pick on those you care about. The whole BEF picks on you so you should feel really loved.)

I loved the chat feature. Thank you Bloodspite. I found your site and actually made it through your tight security. I only had to fill out those random letters a time or two in order to register. But, I finally got through. It was nice meeting you.

Congrats to Mrs. Who and Bitterroot on their "new little who". (Pending the results of the retest. Maybe it was all a hallucination).

Bou was a blast as usual. Her recent boob blogging made for good references.

Writersblock and her lurking husband, Sherlock, were welcomed party crashers. Sorry you kept wasting your Martini.

Tammi promised pictures from Fritz's today. That should be good.

I missed ArmyWifeToddlerMom last night. I came back to the party just as she was leaving.

I had an unexpected visitor last night. It was a good thing ya'll kept me up past my bed time or I would have had to kill an adopted son. Daredevil's best friend came by looking for Improviser or so that was his excuse. He actually had a fight with his girlfriend and I think he was looking for a place to hide.

I apologize if I missed anyone. I had a great time. It's wonderful to be at a party and not have to leave the house and not clean up after any guests.

Also, would someone please e-mail the instructions for posting the survivor logo on my sidebar. I have forgotten how. I need code or something don't I? I really need to work on my blog. I haven't added anything in a long time. Any and all help is appreciated because I have faked my way through all of this stuff this far.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Blog Crawl 2007

UPDATE: Bloodspite set up a chat for us. Everyone head on over.




Come on in everybody. The party is just getting started.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY CONTAGION!

The bubbles are flowing and the party is on.

Count down begins

Only 20 days left until Daredevil graduates and is officially a U.S. Marine.

I'll drive



Oh this will be so much fun. I love to mess with drunks.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

27 Days

Only 27 days left until Daredevil officially becomes a United States Marine. The weeks have flown by so quickly. He is even amazed by how fast it has gone.

Yesterday was his 20th birthday. It did not feel right not sending him anything. But, he specifically said not to "even let them know" it was his birthday. He did not want anyone in Parris Island finding out it was his birthday. So, I did not send a card or even write Happy Birthday in a letter. We will celebrate next month when he gets home.

I love his letters. The kid is so demented. This time he writes, "Then, we got A-line and BWT (Basic Warrior Training) next week. That's where the fun starts. We're going to be in full gear with our rifles rolling in the mud under razor wire, sleeping on the deck. The stuff I came here for."

This is the second time he has mentioned rolling in the mud and has been excited about it. The kid just ain't right. But, it is this attitude that is pulling him through. I am so proud of him.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

For Sale

Recently remodeled 1996 Saturn.







The Rest of the Story (As requested by Bou in the comments):

I have learned a valuable lesson. It took it happening twice to learn it but I think I have the bigger picture now. DON'T EVER PAY OFF A VEHICLE, GO ON VACATION AND LEAVE SAID VEHICLE WITH YOUR TEENAGER.

In April of 2005, I paid off my Explorer and went to see my Sweetie in the Bahamas. I received a call from Improviser the first night of my trip. "Mom, I got your car stolen."

The Saturn pictured above was my replacement car. It was a definite downgrade in regards to space but was a good reliable little car. I paid off the Saturn in May of this year. I made the mistake of leaving my car with Chowhound this time. I went on a cruise to Cozumel with my Sweetie. I called Chowhound Monday afternoon from the Ft. Lauderdale airport to confirm what time he was to pick me up. I know he had been dreading that phone call all day long. He wrecked it that morning. No one else was involved in the accident and he wasn't hurt.

Now....for the rest of the story.

Chowhound is usually a responsible young man. He is only 6 months from his eighteenth birthday. He has causally watched as his two older brothers pulled the antics. Improviser getting the Explorer stolen and Daredevil continually trying his mother's patience by sneaking out to his underage girlfriend's house. I didn't realize he was taking notes and just waiting for an opportunity to tarnish his image. Since, he is usually responsible his Dad didn't not make him stay with him overnight while I was gone. This proved to be a big mistake. Chowhound's girlfriend snuck out of her house Sunday night. He picked her up and they went back to my house. He took her home sometime around 4am and fell asleep on the way back to my house. He woke up when the car veered into the grass in median. Startled, sleepy and inexperienced at driving, he over corrected and went into a spin. It is just speculation as to what happened at some points. He said he just hit a hole next to a drainage grate. But, the damage on the car doesn't fit that. There is a very distinct roundness and white scrapes on the front. I think he may have hit a concrete pole that was nearby and the speed and spin of the car just ricocheted him around it. It was 5am. Both airbags deployed and the vehicle was filled with the smoke from the airbags. He wasn't wearing his seatbelt so he was bouncing around inside the car. He was very fortunate that he wasn't hurt and I didn't kill him.

The thing that gets me is that the parents of the girls my boys date do not know what their daughters are doing. I am always the one who catches them. Am I the only parent who checks on their teenager in the middle of the night. I get up frequently to pee so I do bed checks while I am up. I have done this since they were born. It is habit and I go back to sleep better knowing my children are alright.

I had a talk with Chowhound's girlfriend. I told her I would not tell her parents THIS TIME but if she ever snuck out again I would march in and rat her out in a heartbeat. I did my calm mother speech and read both of them the riot act. She told Chowhound that was the first time she had ever cried while she wasn't getting yelled at. It's been an expensive lesson.

Recruit Update

Time is flying. Daredevil is scheduled to graduate Oct. 19. We're almost done. I get about one letter a week. He sounds like he is having a blast. I'm sure he leaves out a lot of stuff for my benefit but overall he is in great spirits.

They are now at the rifle range barracks. He writes,

"We're going to be here for a month. We're in a squad bay that is about half the size as our old one and the floor is red. There are no officers around to the the DI in trouble so everyone in the PLT thought the same thing at the same time. The floors are red to cover up the blood of recruits. The thing that makes it sound true is that in some spots there are red spots on the ceiling. It's really creepy."
His birthday is next Friday. He will be 20. Wow. When did my little boys get so old? I'll only have one teenager left. Anyhow, Daredevil included this,
"Oh, on my B-day don't, I repeat, DON'T SEND ME ANYTHING. And don't let them know it is my b-day." (Emphasis all his)
I bet they get treated extra special on their birthdays. I don't understand this at all. (dripping in sarcasm). I'm sure they let the birthday boys sleep in and get extra chow and all that wonderful stuff.

October is going to be another busy month. My grandmother arrives in Pensacola on the 10th. My oldest sister turns 50 on the 16th. Daredevil graduates on the 19th. The following week on the 26th my nephew graduates. My birthday is on the 29th. Then throw in all of Chowhound's marching band activities, football games and competitions.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Life took over

Wow! I have actually had a life lately and haven't been home to live through other peoples blogs. So, this is what it feels like. So, what have I been up to lately? In a nutshell:

road trip
waterpark
Eating
go carts
swimming in the hotel pool
Eating
movies
spending time with my Sweetie, his son, and Chowhound
Eating
quick visit with my blog Momma
changing out the clothes in my suitcase
Eating
flying
cruising on Enchantment of the Seas
strolling in Key West
eating
lounging by the pool
eating
gambling
eating
napping
diving in Cozumel, Mexico
shows
getting engaged
flying home
finding out Chowhound totaled my car
discovering the washing machine died

So, now I get to go car shopping, replace the washing machine and go on a serious diet.

Ah, isn't it nice that life provides you with checks and balances.

Time to get to work and back to reality.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Don't blink



I love Kenny Chesney's new song. I absolutely love it. Don't blink. It is so true. I look at the young men my boys have become and I wonder when it happen. How did I miss it? I must have blinked. Oh how I tried so hard not too.

Then I think about how my mother must feel as her oldest child gets ready to turn 50. How she must feel looking at her grandchildren and her great grandchildren. At how the world has changed in her 74 years. I wonder if she feels like she blinked.

And then I think how my grandmother must feel. She was born in 1914. She has seen things get better and worse. The living conditions have gotten better. The condition of humanity and how we treat each other has gotten worse. She has seen so much in her 93 years. She blinked the the depression was here. She blinked it was gone. She blinked her daughter was born. She blinked her husband died. She blinked and a new love entered her life. And she blinked and blinked and life keeps changing.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Signs you have a teenager

1. You get excited when you get to drive your own car.
2. You are in shock when you discover cash in your wallet.
3. Every time you get in your car it is on "E".
4. There is never any food in your house even though you go grocery shopping every day.
5. You cannot plan any activity for you and your child that starts before Noon.


Feel free to add your own.

Friday, August 24, 2007

B*tchiness indicator




You Are 23% Bitchy



You're a pretty sweet person, and you're definitely not prone to bitchy outbursts.

Sometimes, though, you can't help thinking mean thoughts about people. But at least you don't act on them!



Maybe that's why I can't stay married. (It says 23%)

Another letter

I got another letter. I got another letter. That makes 3 so far. It takes so little to make a mother happy. But, then I opened the letter and found out why I'm getting mail now. They were quarantined. His entire platoon. His SDI said they made Parris Island history. The only platoon to ever be quarantined. I'm assuming since this letter was several days ago that everything is okay now. He said he had a slight fever and that the ones with the high fevers they were putting in isolation. There are approximately 20 recruits from his platoon put in isolation. He didn't say why. I'm not sure what they were watching for. He said he was bored lying in his rack for two days. He did say this would not affect his graduation date.

He is now is Phase 2. This week is Swim Week. His cousin warned him. It's not just playing in the pool. But even with all the gear they have to wear, I'm sure it will feel good since it's been so hot. He loved the confidence course.

"Oh, yesterday we did the confidence course. It was so much fun. I passed everything with flying colors. None of it was real hard. The one I had the most fun on was the "A-frame". I had to climb a 20ft rope, then climb through a foot and a half gap between 2 logs then walk across some logs with about 6 inches between them. Then, climb up a 10 or 15 ft "A-frame" with 4 x4s on it then grab a rope, which I could just barely reach, and slide down the rope to some mats at the bottom. It was so much fun."
He has always been my climber. As a child, he would climb on top of the playground equipment. I'm talking about the roof covering it not just the top of the monkey bars. He did that one time with one arm in a sling because he had a broken collar bone. Yeah, the confidence course was right up his alley.

I'm counting down the days. October 19 will be here soon.

It is strange just having one child at home now. Well, one I'm responsible for anyways. He is never home. Between band and school starting back up. I see him occasionally. Last night, was open house. We breezed through, met his teachers and were done before the time it officially started. He only has 3 teachers other than the band director I've known for the last 8 years. He has two band classes. Plus, he is trying to become a Band Aide. (snicker snicker). I've made all kinds of corny jokes about that. He has rolled his eyes and shook his head so much at my stupid jokes that he looks possessed. They also can have an optional 7th period. Guess what he's taking. Band. More than half his day will be spent annoying the Band Director. Talk about an easy Senior Year. Four Band classes, sign language, economics and English. He better take advantage of things now. This is the easiest life is ever going to be.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Amazing Boys

I haven't posted on Improviser lately. He is more of a low key person than the other two. Daredevil and Chowhound jump in and make a lot of noise at whatever they do compared to Improviser who quietly trudges down his own path. He tried the Jr. College path a bit but it's just not his thing. So after a semester or two of completing the classes he enjoyed the most and dropping the required ones he has put it off a bit. I don't blame him. I was bored too. So, now he is sharing an apartment with 3 other young adults. They struggle but they seem to keep their heads above water. He is committed to making it on his own. He has found that the work force is tough and doesn't pay much when you have no skills. This may eventually drive him back to school. I know it did me. Yesterday, he called all excited. All year he has been applying for job after job after job. He worked as a busboy at a Country Club for a while after he got fed up with the inner politics at Office Depot. He just started working at Radio Shack a few weeks ago but it is only part time. Now, finally he has gotten a job with a security company and is going to be a security guard at the local Courthouse. It is full-time. It pays more than he has ever made before not much on a standards of living chart but still for him it's a good job. I loved hearing the enthusiasm and excitement in his voice.

Of all my boys, he is the one I have always worried most about. He is extremely intelligent but must do things in his way and in his time. He wants to discover things on his own. He doesn't want to just take someone else's word for it. He is one of those that would have been questioning those who claimed the world was flat. He would have taken flack from everyone and in the end he would have been right. He stands by his guns. I'm proud of him. It's not easy to trudge your own path through life. He's not going to stand in line and follow the masses. He will take the hardest route and probably be more satisfied in the end.

I am just as proud of him as I am of the other two. Daredevil chose the Military Path, Chowhound will probably take the College path, and Improviser elected to join the University of Hard Knocks. I figure as long as they show responsibility and determination then they will be alright. All three boys have an abundance of both.

They all just amaze me.

Monday, August 13, 2007

I got a letter

Finally, my own personal letter from Daredevil. He is frustrated. They moved him to a different platoon. He says,

"most of the kids, yes I said kids, don't have even a hint of discipline at all. They can't stand still, they don't listen, and they don't stop talking. And the worst part about is that the DI's basically stopped training us....They won't teach us drill. And now the Senior DI says it not our fault. It's society and the Officers of Parris Island's fault because they aren't 'allowed' to touch us. And what's worse is that my old platoon is the best platoon in the entire company and they moved me to the worst Platoon in the company. This stupid Platoon is almost driving me to tell the SDI that I want to go home cuz I'm not learning shit. I still have my visa check card. I could go buy a bus ticket home if i wanted to. But, I won't do it cuz I'm not a quitter. I've never given up on anything I've done. Wonder if I can be pushed back one week and graduate with (cousin) like I was supposed to and may I'll get a platoon that actually cares. Everyone here says they want to be here but it doesn't show."
I guess being a band geek is finally paying off. He had discipline drilled in him from his Band Director for six years. Not to mention from me too. But, I think a large part of it came from being part of an organization where they all had to pull together. It is ingrained in his character. I hope the "kids" in his platoon grow up fast.

Life Resumes

Chowhound is home safe and sound. Well, actually, I should say he is back. He came home and immediately stole my car and went to his girlfriend's house for homemade ice cream. I swear, I am so mistreated as a mother. I get no appreciation from these teenagers of mine.

Teal Sound brought home the bronze (3rd Place) in DCI Division II Grand Finals. Congratulations to all! Chowhound came off the plane wearing his Teal Sound jacket and his medal. Someone in the airport came up to him and congratulated him. The Blue Devils are this years Division I Champs. The Boston Crusaders, who Chowhound auditioned for and didn't make, didn't even score as high as Teal did in the finals. Their loss.

If you have never seen a DCI group perform, you are missing a treat. The time and energy these kids put into the show is phenomenal. You can go to You Tube and watch one but it doesn't do it justice. You have to see it live. Chowhound was just glowing about it. He said it was awesome. They held this years Division I finals in the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California.

I think about all that Chowhound has done in his life so far. Far more than I had done by age 17. This is the second year he has done drum corps. He has been in or traveled through almost all of the states east of the Mississippi River. This year they added the southwest states. Arizona was not one of his favorite. "The scenery was great but it was hot".

What a great nation we live in. That we are able to give our children opportunities such as these. I let my 17 year old son travel with more or less strangers all over the United States. He was gone for two months. I had no worries about his safety. Other, than flying home. He said it was a piece of cake. We can do theses things and sleep at night because of our armed forces. And now, one of my own will be defending these shores shortly. I am proud to be an American Mom.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Kidless no more

My childlessness is coming to an end. Yeah! Chowhound will be home this evening. He is at the LA Airport right now waiting on his flight. I wish I had a picture of that airport right now. I'm sure it looks an evacuation shelter. The DCI finals in Pasadena, California concluded last night. There are 70 corps groups with a minimum of 135 participants plus staff in each. The vast majority of these are flying out of LAX. Chowhound has been at the airport since 2am. He said everyone is blowing up their air mattress and sleeping anywhere they can. They been sleeping on gym floors all over the country for the last two months so why not the airport. There kids range in age from 14 to 19. What a site to behold!

I am very nervous about him flying home. He has to change planes in Houston. There is only one person he knows on his flight. He has never flown by himself before. The only other times he has flown was with me going to the Bahamas, twice. I'm sure he'll do fine. But, I'm anxious about it.

Well, time to get back to pacing.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

I'm the Mom

I'm supposed to get the first letter. It's not fair. Daredevil's girlfriend got a letter. That didn't really bother me. I expected that. But, his Dad got a letter before I did. It's not right. I'm the mom. But, at least I have heard how he is doing. He says it's not as hard as he imagined. He's only in the first week. That will change. He loves the martial arts. His letter was upbeat and encouraging to me. No mention of homesick.

I'm going to start stalking my mailman. I want a letter of my own.

No news is good news

At least that is what everyone is telling me. Other than two address, I haven't heard from Daredevil. His girlfriend hasn't even gotten a letter. Of course, I know how much he hates to write so that may be part of it.

My nephew is now at Parris Island too.

Jake's Life has some touching photos he took recently. A Marine, a gun, and beanie babies. You must see. He is currently in Iraq and tells about some of the things he has seen.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Forgotten Meme

Once upon a time someone tagged me with a meme. CRS crept in and it slipped my mind. Then, life took over as it has a way of doing. I am supposed to list eight things about myself.

1. I procrastinate and suffer from CRS (can't remember sh*t). This is a deadly combination.

2. This is accompanied by periods of I can tackle the world. No, I'm not manic-depressive just human.

3. Although, I did self-diagnose myself as manic-depressive when I was 11. I was relived when I found out there was something that described how I felt. It was easier to deal with than the fact that I was being molested by my step-father.

4. I'm still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up. So far I've come to the opinion that a grown up isn't one of the things I want to be. But, dammit it happened any how.

5. We had all kinds of unusual pets when I was a child. We had a skunk named Sam. We had two "flying squirrel" or actually sugar gliders. One was named Mitzy and would sit on my mom's head when she read. We also had rabbits, snakes, a white deer, possums, and lots of dogs, cats.

6. I had my picture in the paper for the bicentennial when I was in middle school. We had a dress up day for the occasion and my mom had made me an old fashioned style dress and bonnet. The newspaper reported picked me and a boy to pose in front of a buggy that was at our school. I hated that boy. I was appalled to be in a picture with him. I never saw the picture as we didn't get the afternoon addition of the News Journal. But, other people told me it was in there.

7. I really need to work on my self-confidence. People make me nervous and I have a difficult time thinking when other people are around. I'm best with one-on-one or big groups where I can float around from person to person thereby controlling my comfort level.

8. I've been in a long-distance relationship for three years. It's the best relationship I've ever had. We met through E-Harmony and I could write one of those sappy commercials everyone is always complaining about.

Okay. I did it. I'm through.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Daredevil's moved

I rushed to the mailbox and my heart skipped a beat. There were two letters from my recruit. The joy and anticipation was quickly replaced by confusion. I have two form letters postmarked the same day that give me conflicting Platoon numbers. I think they have moved him. From what I can figure out. It sounds like they had too many people in the original Platoon. So, for you folks I sent an address to, I'll be sending you a different one. If you already mailed a letter, which I have, they have assured me it will find him...eventually.

Carnival of Recipes is UP

"We've all had times in our life when we've decided to Just Say No to certain types of foods. (Some of us are much better at than others. This is not my strong suit.) This week, cehweidel has made it much easier to Just Say No when we need to by just saying yes to collecting great recipes for restricted diets, and the Carnival of the Recipes: Just-Say-No Edition is ready for your perusal at http://www.cehwiedel.com/blogs/kneadlework/?p=194. "

Quote directly stolen and plagiarized from Carnival of Recipes e-mail.

Next week is Crock Pots and I know someone who has an excellent Crock Pot recipe. (Hint, hint, blog momma. If you don't send it in I will).

Monday, July 30, 2007

It figures

I have two more weeks to get stuff done around here before Chowhound gets home and now I get a freaking cold.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Silence is a Strange noise

Quiet. The house is quiet of kid sounds. It still has house sounds and dog sounds. And if the dog doesn't get quiet I may have to do something about that. But, the house is absent of kids.

It's a strange sound. I can hear the hum of the air conditioner. The rattle of the vents. The compressor on the refrigerator. I hear the laughter of my boys but it's in my head and my heart.

I've spent the last twenty-one years surrounded by sounds. Babies crying. Toddlers laughing. Brother's arguing, teasing and fighting all in a pretense that they don't love each other. There have been the sounds of broken hearts and suppressed tears. Joys and screams of accomplishment. Musical instruments banging, clanging and blowing. Bedroom doors slamming. Car doors slamming. Basketballs dribbling. Dishes banging in the sink. The TV blaring.

Now I can hear myself think. And I think I miss it.

Scuba Sexy




Erotic wear for scuba divers?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Bootcamp past and present

Bootcamp Present

I was talking with my sister earlier this evening when all of a sudden she exclaims, "(Recruit) is home". What? No. Her son is supposed to be in Parris Island with my son. Nope. Not gonna happen. Yet. It seems they messed up his paper work. His report date and social security number were wrong. He spent two days at the processing center in Montgomery, AL, just to get on a bus and head back home to Florida for another week. By the time they corrected all the paperwork Parris Island was full. He will report next Monday. Recruit Daredevil is going to be looking for him. I hope this doesn't mentally make things harder on him since he was expecting his cousin to be there enduring this with him. Now, we will have to make two trips to Parris Island for graduation if all goes according to schedule and there are no other delays.

Bootcamp Past

When my boys were younger they were involved in the Sea Cadet Program at the Naval Air Station here in Jacksonville. The Program consists of two parts, The Navy League, which is for 11 -14 year olds and the Sea Cadets which is 13 - 17. These program are essentially Navy Reserve for kids. They meet once a month, learn to march, wear the same uniforms, and perform the same PT as the Navy Enlisted Personnel. They learn from the same books. Take the same test. Do the same drills. They get yelled at. They also go to Bootcamp.

All three boys went to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida, for bootcamp. Improviser was so little that they duct-taped his canteen belt on him because it kept falling off. Their uniforms were all the smallest female uniforms I could find. I would cut about a foot and a half off of the leg length and hem them.

Let me tell you. It is hard to drive three hours from home and drop your 11 year old off for bootcamp. It didn't matter that it was only for a week. I was a wreck. Of course, I'm probably doing better now because of it. I know that my son has been prepared because of that and marching band. He knows how to sweat. He knows what it feels like to be yelled at. Yeah, I know Parris Island is on a much, much higher scale but he has had a taste.

Anyhow, the point of this post is that I found the letter that Daredevil wrote me from bootcamp when he was 11. I'm going to send it to him. He will get a kick out of it. It says,

Dear family,

Hi Mom, Dad and the rest of the family. Here in bootcamp thing aren't going as I planned that means it's going very well. The reason I say that is because on the first day I missed dinner and I missed to get me a canteen and a canteen belt, but the good thing are instead of the dry steaks I got TV dinners. I sorry my letter is so short but I have to take a shower.

Your son
(Daredevil)

P.S. I haven't got yelled at yet.
The envelope is post-marked June 30, 1999.

I wonder how that will compare to his first letter from this bootcamp. I'll keep you posted.