Sunday, October 28, 2007

Payback

I need another pair of hands for E3.

Don’t get me wrong…I feel very blessed to have such a healthy and energetic toddler.
It is now 0735, well 0800 by the time I post this, and this has been his day thus far…
-climb into the bathroom sink and throw all toothbrushes, paste and soap
-Take a box of Frosted Mini-Wheats out of the cupboard, empty the box and throw pieces around the kitchen, not neglecting the piles of sugar/cereal “dust” from the bottom of the bag
-Open the box for the game “Let’s Go Fishin’” , dump it, and throw little fish everywhere.
-Use E1’s glitter glue on the kitchen table
-Up and down the stairs 5 times
-Emptying a box of oatmeal onto the floor, and doing what E2 described as a “snow-angel”
-giggling and laughing the entire time

Keep in mind that I am never more than steps away from E3. I have not showered as of yet, and will definitely need to take him into the shower with me. I cannot keep him in his crib…he learned to climb out months ago. My number one concern is safety…so that has been my focus…keeping choking items away from him.

I guess it was only a matter of time…both Hubby and I were labeled “energetic toddlers”.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Spousebuzz Radio

I survived my first “speaking role” on SpouseBuzz Talk Radio tonight. I bribed the kids to keep quiet with a new Little Pony Movie, and it worked…for the most part. Aside from a few technical difficulties due to my phone (Time Warner has a truck on the corner and my phone/internet/cable cuts off periodically), I think it went well.
The topic was the upcoming Spousebuzz Live 3, and as I said earlier…go if you can, you wont regret it!

I wish the fat lady would sing...

The fires are still burning, and the fire fighters are continuing to do an excellent job. It is amazing to see them in action. Thankfully, I have not seen them up close this time. The fire-fighting aircraft in action is an awesome sight. The skill of these pilots is unsurpassed…they fly low to the ground, with tremendous turbulence and practically no visibility and drop their load of water or repellant right on target. An amazing sight to see. I only saw from a distance this time, but one year, a helicopter was so low, it looked as if it’s straw (whatever it is called-the hose that hangs down to suck up water from the reservoir) was touching the treetops in my back yard as it flew over. The dogs were jumping up at the helicopter, trying to scare it away.

I know the many prayers have been instrumental in keeping so many people out of harms way this year. Many, many homes and several lives have been lost, and so many are still in danger…especially in San Diego County. We are still trying to reach an uncle that lives in an evacuated area. I heard that the avocado crop was hurt by the fires… he has an avocado ranch in the area…so we’re waiting…and praying.

Our upcoming weekend plans include a trip to the pumpkin patch. The pumpkin patch that we were planning to go to was also destroyed by fire. I’ve gone there many times on school field trips with the children. In addition to pumpkins, it had a great little petting zoo, a hayride through a field of scarecrows and sunflowers, and a very friendly staff. E1 was using an orange pencil for homework last night…I’m saving that pencil.
Our cousin’s home, right down the road, was untouched.


I have an odd feeling…tough to describe…maybe guilt? I have only wind damage around here, while others have nothing left at all. I saw a touching report last night…a family returning home to their house that was leveled by the fire. Wrapped in a blanket, were family photos that the firefighters had quickly grabbed off of the wall before the fire completely destroyed the house. It was the only thing this family had left of their home.

I’ll be busy cleaning the yard for a few days…a bit of debris and tree limbs and an arbor full of grape vines torn to the ground…many, many roof shingles have been cleaned up already. I was relieved that for once, they were not from my roof. We had a new metal roof installed last fall…to withstand the wind and fire. It passed the wind test, and I hope it never needs to pass the fire test.

Totally off-topic, but an interesting tidbit…an odd cross-world connection…Just like when my Hubby and I both destroyed our cell phones within hours of each other …Hubby called today while I was in the Taco Bell drive-thru (I hadn’t been there for months!)He had just been to Taco Bell too! (not a regular occurrence for him either, he was at a different base than usual) Our selections were different. I had one chicken soft taco, and he had 10 soft tacos and 3 supreme tacos. He eats like a teenage boy.

*update 10/26 7pm* Uncle has been found...his home was spared, but fired charred everything around it.

*update #2, 10/27* It looks like the pumpkin patch is open for business...not the same as it was, but open. You can view photos of before and after here.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

WhooHooo!


I know many of you have a way to count the days gone/days left of deployment.
This is what I saw today when I checked my "Donut of Misery"
All I can say is WhooHoo!

Monday, October 22, 2007

A Request


I’m asking everyone that may come across this post to pray for all those affected by the many fires here in SoCal. Firefighters are doing an amazing job, but the winds are not cooperating with them.
As I type, I am NOT in the path of any of the raging fires. Santa Ana winds are shaking my home…you can see smoke from one of the fires in the photo…it was impossible to hold the camera still as I was pushed aside by gusting winds. The winds are coming from the dry-brush covered hillside and canyon behind me.
I’m watching the news…as another fire begins…somewhere I recognize. I’ve been on that street many times to visit family.
Information can be found here about all of the fires in the area.
I will sleep when the winds leave…hopefully tomorrow.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

In Training



Go

Vikings!

"A great wind is blowing, and that gives you either imagination or a headache." Catherine the Great

The Santa Ana’s are here… crazy, hot, dry, and relentless winds. The meteorologists say that it should last until Tuesday afternoon. Gusts of 80 mph …without a cloud in the sky.

We managed to go to church today. The roads are full of debris, and palm fronds hit my car as I drove, but I had a lot that I wanted to pray for today. I am blessed to live in a country in which a few palm fronds on the roadway is my biggest obstacle in attending church.
The firefighters will be busy for the next few days, if not with actual fires, then with the anticipation of them. A small spark can soon destroy hundreds or thousands of acres with this wind. Needless to say, I don’t sleep well when the Santa Ana’s are around.

Now I’m off to fish some patio furniture out of the pool…

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Just breathe.

Do ya’ know what I dislike even more than knowing my Hubby is in a combat zone?

Driving by my daughter’s school at lunch time and seeing a S.W.A.T. vehicle, along with several other unmarked police cars parked on the street outside of the school.

My heart stopped.

Then I looked more closely…several police officers were sitting in lawn chairs, having lunch, in the yard at the home across the street from the school.

Yes, I think that took at least 1 year off of my life. Thanks.

Hi Hubby!

I finally gave Hubby my blog address, so here is a note to him…

Hi Hubby!
Just a few things you should know:
1. Some days are good and some are bad. I often use my blog to vent. Try not to worry that I’m going totally bat crazy here.
2. I am concerned with OPSEC, as I know you are. I’m pretty vague about things.
3. I refer to you as “Hubby” most of the time. Also, you know E1, E2 and E3…they’re your kids. Wasn't it your idea to have all their names begin with the letter "E"?
4. I DO use the doggies names.
5. TripleE (my name) refers to E1,E2,and E3 not my cup size.
6. Feel free to comment, but don't feel that you have to. You can just email or IM me if you want. :)
7. and last but not least, I LOVE YOU!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Something new...

Like many milspouses whose husbands are deployed, I have a list of things I want to accomplish before Hubby returns. One of the things on my list is to get in shape and lose weight. Before my Hubby left, I joined a nearby gym. I go an average of 2 times a week. Sometimes it’s 5 times a week, sometimes I skip a week altogether. I usually skip because either one of the kids is sick (not able to go into the gym daycare), or one of them is crying that they don’t want to go. Both E2 and E3 are having separation issues since Hubby left and they often cry when I leave the room. E2 is always happily playing when I return to the daycare, but E1 is still sad about ½ of the time. The other ½, I am paged before I complete my workout. I am still going to continue try to go, but sometimes I just can’t do it. E3 just breaks my heart when he cries.

I want to get in shape, not only because I want my Hubby to be shocked when he returns, but also for my health. In the past, I exercised primarily to improve my appearance. I am now reaching the age of 40. The majority of my family members have diabetes. Some are obese, but not all of the ones that have diabetes are also overweight. I have never shown any signs of the disease, and I want to keep it that way. Now I exercise and watch what I eat for my health as well as for my appearance.

Since I’m not able to visit the gym regularly, I’m going to try something new…

When I attended Spousebuzz Live in San Diego, I met Billy Blanks .
I was in the hallway, walking in circles, pushing E3 in the stroller as he slept. I had been in the luncheon, but E3 decided that he would rather fuss and have a diaper change. I stepped out, he fell asleep in the stroller, and I listened from the hall. As E3 and I were in the hall, a gentleman walked by, I thought, “that guy kinda looks like that Tae Bo guy on TV”. When I saw his entourage, I realized that it was him. I continued standing near the doorway to the luncheon, and listened to the speaker, rocking E3 back and forth in his stroller. A few moments later, Mr. Blanks approached me, sans entourage, and asked if I was a military spouse. I answered “yes”. We continued to have a very nice conversation, speaking of his trips to Iraq, his children, my husband, etc. I realized that Mr. Blanks had a truly good and caring heart. He was very sincere. He also looked amazing. He is over 50 years old, and looks amazing.
I had never done a TaeBo workout before. I just saw that 15 minute Tae Bo workouts are available on my cable On Demand for free.
I did my first Tae Bo workout tonight. Wheew!
I’m glad that I wasn’t being videotaped, because I am not very coordinated, but I did have a good workout. Hopefully my coordination will improve with time.

Losing 25 pounds before R&R in February is definitely something on my list that I want to accomplish, and I'm NOT going to have any more excuses.
(Thanks Lemon Stand)

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Staying Connected

We found a couple new ways to be connected to Hubby/Daddy this week.
At the beginning of the week, my mini-van was telling me screaming at me, that it needed new front brakes. The mechanic needed it for a day to look at a few other maintenance issues while it was there. My wonderful neighbor drove me and E3 home from said mechanic.
I needed to drive Hubby’s car for the day. I searched high and low for the rear seat to the PT Cruiser (BTW, the PT is a great car…Hubby traded in his 1st PT last year with 250K miles on it with very few issues, and then bought the same car/different color). I finally found it (cursing my poor Hubby the entire time). The kids LOVE riding in Daddy’s car. We drove it all week. It was good to run a tank of gas through it. We’ll be sure to alternate cars from now on.

Early today, Hubby called and said that he finally was able to have internet installed in his tent! We IM’d and emailed, and video and audio conferenced today. The kids said, “We saw Daddy! We haven’t seen him move for a long time! Unless we swing flat-daddy around when we dance” They loved it, and I think IM’ing will be a popular way for us to communicate. He won’t be back to his tent for a few days…I can’t wait! I want to thank the guy who invented satellites, and Steve Jobs. It amazes me that I was talking with, and seeing my husband while he is on the other side of the world…in a tent…in the middle of the desert. Technology ROCKS!

Nothing that a Jacuzzi couldn't cure

I’ve been reading a book by Brad Thor, Blowback, for several weeks. I usually finish books within a few days, but I haven’t had time to read this one. It’s a great book…my first by this author…thanks to Airforcewife at Spousebuzz for recommending Brad Thor. Late-night work has been pretty busy for the last few months (I can’t complain, it’s been paying for my retail therapy). I’ve only been reading 5 minutes a day while waiting in the pick-up line at E1’s school. Tonight, I decided that the stack (and I mean stack) of work on my desk could wait. I enjoyed a nice, long bath and read my book. I didn’t finish, but I am now about ½ way through.
I needed a bath…I had…and still have , a hell of a headache.
Let’s see how that happened…
Once again, ants were sneaking into my house. I saw a few under the table and decided to go under there and clean. While bending under the table, I hit my head…hard…really hard, on the side of the table. I don’t know why, I am really not that coordinated, so it didn’t surprise me. I wasn’t surprised, but I was dizzy, and lying on the floor under the table.
You know those stories on the evening news?...the ones about a child that calls 911 and saves their parent?...Well, that is not going to happen at my house.
Yes, we’ve learned about 911, we’ve “practiced”, etc.., but when kids are distracted, they may not noticed that their mother is sprawled on the kitchen floor.
When I hit my head, E1 was just steps away from me. The thud of me hitting my head was loud, REALLY loud. She was looking in the fridge, I don’t know if she noticed. As I was lying there on the floor, groaning, eyes closed, E1 walked past me. I didn’t see her, my eyes were closed, I was afraid that I was going to pass out, but I sense that she stepped over my legs in order to navigate past me.
I could hear E3 calling my name (at least he noticed, he sounded worried) he was on a bench at the table. I called E1’s name, she came, and I asked her to take E3 to the living room so he didn’t fall from the bench. She did that.
A few minutes later, I asked E1 if she noticed that I hurt myself, she said “ya, but I had to get my lollipop”.
Kids…gotta love ‘em.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Lazy Saturday


It's a lazy Saturday.
The kids slept until 7 am....the latest they have slept for months.
E3 was up during the night with a nasty cold.
Today will be spent watching TV, listening to the rain, and cuddling in the tent in the living room.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Our Code

There has been discussion around the blogsphere regarding what and how much we should tell our deployed spouses . I saw it again today in a comment from Jan over at Standing By. If we’re having a terrible day, do we tell them? Is it just adding stress to their already stressful day? There is even a recent article in Stars&Stripes that acknowledges that communication from home can increase a soldier’s stress.
I know everyone has a different opinion on this topic, and each spouse really needs to do what they feel is best for them, their spouses and their marriage.
Realistically, my worst day here is better than Hubby’s best day over there. Yes, the kids can drive me crazy, the pipe may be leaking under the house, the car needs new brakes and the dogs won’t shut up. It is still a far cry from IED’s, extreme heat, biting flies and rats sneaking into his tent. Sometimes when my Hubby calls, I just need to vent to my best friend. I need to tell him exactly what’s going on. I do when I need to, and he listens. He knows that there is nothing that he can physically do for me at that moment. He can only listen through the delays and static.
So far, venting to Hubby has been a rarity. Usually, when I answer the phone and hear his voice, the stress melts away and a little smile sneaks onto my lips.
Hubby and I discussed this topic before he left. We decided upon a code phrase that he would use if I was telling him too much…if I was talking about things he could not help me with…things that were either of no consequence, or too stressful for him to deal with at that time.
So far, he’s only used the code once, and he said “just put a newspaper over it until I get home, Honey”.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Sweet Dreams

Today, E2 was lying next to me, asleep.
She awoke, and immediately said “Daddy!”, with a huge smile on her face. I hadn’t seen that smile for months.
She woke further, and realized that it wasn’t Daddy sleeping next to her.
The smile immediately dissipated.
It nearly broke my heart.

Over the Weekend

We had a pretty good weekend.
Busy…but not overly so.
On Saturday we went to our first FRG meeting. It was an FRG for a company other than my husband’s, but one close to my home. I had met the leader some time ago and she invited me. I was hoping that my kids would meet other soldier’s kids, and they did. The FRG leader was very upbeat and had done a lot of preparation for the day…crafts for the kids, flyers for the adults. The turnout was disappointing…one, yes one family from the unit attended. With the addition of my family (from another unit), that made a total of two. Two families…the leader stayed upbeat, but I could tell that she was disappointed in the turnout. The notification of the meeting went out late, but still, it was disappointing.
Saturday evening was fun. A friend of mine invited us over for a little birthday get-together. He’s a friend from work, and is always checking to make sure that we’re not sitting around bored on the weekends. With 3 kids, that usually isn’t the case…there is almost always something happening on the weekend. The food was catered…and it was good…really, really, good. I’m not even sure what it was…beef and chicken skewers with various dips, spicy pasta salad, marinated shrimp, little beef-filled wontons, marinated asparagus, and fried chicken. He said my Hubby was “an American Hero” when people asked about him. The kids had a great time. They had more fun at a 51 yr. old’s birthday party than they had at a party in quite a while.
Sunday was filled with church, lunch, and shopping (needed the biggies: dogfood and diapers).
I had a lot of fun with my children this weekend…no major fights between them and no major discipline needed. I wish Hubby could have been here to enjoy it. He did go to church, as a flat-daddy, but he stayed in the car.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Delicious


Today I found a surprise harvest in the back yard. Pomegranates. I never know when they're due to be ripe, and Hubby is always the one who picks them. I saw one today...high up...it required some climbing (that's why Hubby is usually the picker)...but it sure was delicious. Three in all today...all gone. The kids love them too, and definitely something a mom can agree with...so full of antioxidants etc.. One beautiful fruit, I just love the color. Only problem is, my kitchen now looks like a massacre just took place. I wonder if I should call a studio to see if they need a scene location before I clean.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

My Blog needs a makeover.

Sometimes...GAAH!

Sometimes I just want to grab people by the shoulders and shake them…
and say…

-What don’t you understand about the fact that this country is at war? Just because this war isn’t affecting you in the least bit…get a clue!

- I’m sorry that Hubby forgot to call and wish you a happy birthday…he was a little busy avoiding IED’s…and don’t you dare give him a guilt-trip about it. The only reason he remembered last year is because I reminded him when he woke in the morning. Remembering dates is not his specialty.

-Are you kidding me? You’re whining about Hubby not calling you enough? to him?! Does he really even talk to you that much when he’s at home? It’s not as if he’s on a business trip to Fresno…if he was, would he have a line entitled “hostile fire” on his pay stub?

-No, Salesguy, I’m not going to just send this gizmo to Hubby and have him try it because if it doesn’t work, he can just “call customer service”. I want to try it out before I send it. Did you not hear me when I answered “Iraq” when you asked in what country he would be using it?

If I wasn’t so tired and cranky right now, I would figure out how to add a smiley here, like Stephanie at ”She Who Waits”. The one that’s screaming “GAAH!”
so just picture it, will you?
Thanks.

It's NOT Monday?!

The day started like this...
Woke up early...needed to toss a load of clothes into the dryer, or I would have NOTHING to wear today.
Upon removing the clothes from the washer, I hear a thud inside the washer.
Hmmm, what could that be?
a rock?...a toy?
Crap. My cell phone.

Let's add a trip to the T-Mobile store to my to-do list today.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

More Quotes

A few more quotes from me today:


Pumpkin, where’s the drill? (she watches me constantly, so I thought that she may know where I left it)

Please don’t climb into the oven (of course, to E3, the lock is no match for him)

Don’t forget…the Caveman show is on tonight. (reminding a friend that is in need of stupid humor)

You will have confetti poo if you eat that crayon!

I’ll have an ice-blended, non-fat, half-caff, white chocolate, EZ sweet please…oh ..medium, please (not at Starbucks, I prefer a great place nearby that has a kids area so the kiddos can throw play with toys)

Teletubbies, Teletubbies, Say Hello!

Don’t put that bean in your nose!