Friday, November 30, 2007

The smell of wet dog...

It's raining...
really, it is.
I can't believe it either! My plants will love it! That reminds me, I can turn off the sprinklers for a day or two and save a few bucks.
Sparky is soaked to the bone...she's full of mud, and tracking it all over the warm, dry laundry room. I don't think Roxie has left the laundry room, and her cozy blankie yet today. Why does Sparky have so much energy? She's over 12, and has barely slowed down. I'll put her in the shower's easier than a bath.
That's it for now...E3 is trying to eat Play-Doh.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Am I the last to know?

In our civilian lives, Stuntman and I work for the same company. It's a large, international corporation. Combined, we've been there almost 30 years.
Stuntman's been gone since March, and corporate policy is that after 6 months, he's wiped from the roles...taken off the roster, payroll, benefits, access to anything.
Our IT id's are one letter apart (last name,first initial). Someone in IT, in their infinite wisdom, terminated me, not Stuntman.
I've been without voicemail for 2 weeks. Finally, it was restored yesterday, after IT was satisfied that I really still worked for said company. Today, my email was terminated. I'm no longer in the global address book, and I can't access anything.
Of course, I realized this after 5 p.m. home office time.
Man, is my manager going to be pissed.
(not at me, at IT)
I should check my bank and see if I was still paid today.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Oohhh, Ahhhhh

Last night we saw the LADWP Light Festival; a 1 mile long light show through Griffith Park. E1 finished art class at 4:30, we hit The Crazy Chicken for dinner (Mmmm, the chicken may be crazy, but it's tasty).
There was no line at all, and we could travel through the show at our own pace. We even went through twice.

Just another tradition without Stuntman.

I forgot my camera, but snapped a few with my phone.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


64 plants per flat x 35 flats = 2240 holes dug

After weeks of watering and weeding, watering and weeding, the hillsides were ready to plant. I bought 35 flats of gazanias at Lowes. I love that store…they even gave me a military discount even though the Veteran’s Day special was no longer in effect. I asked if the discount was still in effect, and the manager said “no, but we’ll give it to you anyhow”.
My pickup-owning brother-in-law picked up the plants on Friday. I’ve been planting off and on since then...mostly when E3 was napping . When he wasn’t napping, he was “helping’. All the kids helped at some time. E1 planted the most. E2 didn’t do much planting, but she did make a lot of mud. E3 would hold one plant, I would dig a hole, he would stuff the plant into the hole, tuck dirt around it and clap.
Just. Adorable.

Here is a before pic (but after the trees were cut down)

Here is a photo from today of one hillside

Here is what it should look like in a month or two.

I’m hoping it is all purdy by the time Stuntman is home on leave in February.

Monday, November 26, 2007

What's in a name?

I’ve been envious of other milspouses who have creative names for their husbands on their blogs. Something other than DH or Hubby, etc.
Marine Wife has Stretch. Homefront 6 has MacGyver…and my favorite is Butterfly Wife’s Jack Bauer. It should not surprise me that Butterfly Wife suggested a great name for Hubby in the Spousebuzz chat room last night.

It fits.

At the age of 5, the mailman told my mother-in-law that her son was on the roof. Her reply? “He’ll get down when he wants to.”

As a teen, he would roll down the sidewalk doing a handstand on his skateboard.

He doesn't like to fly, but thinks nothing of jumping out of a perfectly good airplane...if the Army pays him for it.

He introduced me to dirt-biking on our first date.

Last year, on base, several soldiers were trying to find a way to hang a giant backdrop on some high scaffolding, no one wanted to climb. My hubby takes one look, and climbs to the top. He was old enough to be the father of most of the soldiers watching.

So yes,
he is now Stuntman.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

One more thing I miss

I’ve seen so many dirt bikes on the road this weekend…in the back of pickups, on trailers, behind RV’s.
We always went riding on Thanksgiving weekend. Sometimes even on Thanksgiving day before dinner. We did miss a few Thanksgivings…sometimes I couldn’t ride because I was pregnant, or when I was recovering from my knee injury and surgery.
I really have the itch to ride right now…scream my bike down the trail…take out all of my frustrations on the bumps and the turns.
My poor bike is just sitting there lonely…
this isn’t a picture of my bike…at one time it looked like it is under a tarp…behind 2 other bikes ☹

I’ll probably get a ticket

Since my little accident, I’ve been speaking with the other guy’s insurance company. Mercury Insurance has really been easy to deal with…and what totally cracked me up was that the adjuster that I have been working with has almost exactly the same name (first, middle and last) of Hubby. The estimate is almost $3K for my van, ouch…glad that I don’t have to pay it. I finally found time to pick up my rental/loaner minivan. A Toyota Sienna… nice car…it was the “runner-up” when we bought the Town&Country last year. The stow-n-go of the T&C is what sold us…we have a ton, really, a ton, of stuff in those under the floor storage areas.
The Sienna does have a bit more power than the T&C, passing/acceleration is quick…a little too quick. I’ve found myself going much too fast. The dash/controls are a pretty blue and purple, but the automatic shifter is odd…I think they were trying to make it sporty or something…really?’s still a minivan, people, quit trying to fool yourself.
The kids like it too…E2 asked if we could keep it. I think it’s just because it’s clean.
To do tomorrow…clean out Hubby’s PT Cruiser…it looks like the inside of my van now.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

I am thankful for so
I have been very blessed in this lifetime.
Mostly, I am thankful for my husband and children.
The healthy, energetic children that keep me so busy that I do not have the time to type any more :)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Food and Football

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving…
my favorite foods, all together.
This year I won’t need to make my own gravy and bring it to dinner so Hubby can smother his potatoes and turkey without using the gravy at dinner that is half wine. Neither of us are fond of wine-flavored gravy, and I make a mean gravy!
I’ll be at the in-laws…should be interesting…
Hubby is the only one in the military…
I’ll be receiving a lot of those “pity” looks and questions.
I don’t feel like a victim, why do people insist on treating me like one…I certainly don’t act like one.
Those at dinner have no idea why anyone would volunteer to serve their country.
At Easter, someone snidely asked me “but is it worth it” and I said “yes, yes it is”
That question, and also the way it was asked, annoyed me. I’m not in the mood for political discussions…or confrontations…just food and football.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Questions, questions, and a big dent

Why don’t people turn around when they back out of a parking spot? Are you really in that much of a hurry? It really slowed you down after you smashed into me, didn’t it?
Took even more of your time to exchange insurance information.
No injuries, except to my door, and my mirror, and my ¼ panel, and my light and bumper... and that teeny scratch on your tailgate.
Something to add to my “to do” list this week.

Actually, I feel kind of sorry for you, guy, I think your wife was yelling at you “don’t park there!” when you changed your mind and backed into me. No wonder you didn’t take the time to look where you were going…I wonder what she said then?

Friday, November 16, 2007

Hubby's on location

Today, I was listening to Ben Stein on Spousebuzz Talk Radio. If you didn’t happen to listen to the show live, (I missed it too) listen to the archive if you can. A topic arose that I have been thinking about lately. The Spousebuzz panel was discussing how some people are uncomfortable with talk of the military. For example, you’re having a conversation with a stranger on an airplane…they find out you’re a milspouse, and the conversation ends. Is that person unsure of what to say next? says nothing? From someone that is uncomfortable in almost any social surrounding, I understand the feeling of not knowing what to say, so I usually assume that is the case.

I was at a child’s birthday party last week, and the mother of the birthday boy had brought some gently used shoes for me to send to Hubby. Last time I saw her, I mentioned that Hubby had left some of the E1 and E2’s shoes outside of the gate for some young girls that he saw every time he left the base. Another parent was there and the hostess said that my husband was “overseas” (not Iraq, not in the military) and was in a poor area and they leave shoes for the kids. I wasn’t going to spout out that he was in the Army and this poor village was in Iraq… the hostess was obviously uncomfortable about the subject. It wasn’t the first time someone described where Hubby is as “overseas”.
I’m sure in military towns, “overseas” may mean military deployment, but here, most think of filming locations. Many people I know leave for weeks or months at a time to shoot a movie on location. Most of the parents at the party were from the entertainment industry…not actors, well one actor who shall remain nameless, mainly because I don’t know his name.
Does anyone else run into this?

Thursday, November 15, 2007


Hubby needed a Big Mac?

What's New?

Still haven't found the Halloween candy...I've given up. It's in a red backpack. Maybe Hubby will find it when he's home on R&R in February.

I went to the mall today...the dreaded mall. I hate shopping. Well not shopping exactly, I hate people in my way when I shop. I want to go in, get what I want and get the hell out of there. Have you ever noticed that some people walk extremely slow! Geeesh, can't you tell that there is a woman on a mission? She has a sitter for 2 hours and needs to buy clothes, fast! Get out of my way!
My neighbor watched the kids while I shopped. I could bring the kids, but I've found that E3 is very quick, can easily crawl under the dressing room door, and usually chooses to do so when I'm naked. Therefore, I haven't bought any new clothes in many, many months.
My sizes have changed...I have a number on the jeans that I bought that I have not seen in a looong time. It is a single digit! WhooHoo!

The kids still miss Pumpkin, but are doing well. They have already asked for another dog. I told them that instead of adopting another dog, lets just pay extra special attention to the two that we have, Sparky and Roxie. That's what we've been doing and the dogs are very happy. Roxie is a little lost, Pumpkin was like a mother to her.

We started a paper chain to count down the days until Hubby/Daddy is home for R&R. It's less that 100 days now and E2 needs something visual so she knows she will be seeing Daddy again. Every time she speaks to him on the phone she says "I wish you should come home now Daddy". In the sweetest voice imaginable. It nearly breaks your heart.

The upcoming weekend looks busy, but fun. How's everyone else doing?

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

A Change of Pace

The last week or so I have slept well…still not that many hours, but well.
Because I know Hubby is stuck inside the wire for about a month.
I know he’s bored…but I don’t mind. I’m actually kinda hoping his “temporary” responsibilities become permanent. He’s not, he misses the missions, but that’s what you get for a dual-MOS I guess…you go where you’re needed.
He just received the package I sent containing nice new sheets. He had always told me not to bother sending anything like that since he rarely slept in his own bed. Now he’s sleeping in the same place, albeit a crappy bug and rat-infested tent, every night.
We’ve even been able to use the internet connection more often to chat, therefore utilizing that modem we forked out so much $$ for.
He’s still so far away, and I still worry about his safety, but my nerves are a little less frazzled…and I’m going to enjoy this temporary reprieve.

Monday, November 12, 2007

My Kids Must Be Geniuses

I feel pretty good today after hearing this bit of info:
Curvy mothers have brainier kids

Saturday, November 10, 2007


I realize that I am much too young for this…

I hid the kids Halloween candy last week so they wouldn’t eat it all in one sitting. My plan was to give a treat now and then. They didn’t ask for candy for days later (I think they forgot all about it too).
Now, I don’t remember where I hid it. I’ve looked in the usual places. I could really use a tiny candy bar right about now.

And also…I need to find the Christmas present that I stashed so that I can return it to Wal-Mart tomorrow…it’s been recalled.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Like looking in a mirror...

I ran across this "celebrity look-alike" face-recognition thingy.
I realize that I must always be the one behind the camera, because there are very few photos of me. I couldn't find one that was acceptable to upload so I could find the answer to the question "who do I look like?"
I took a picture with my webcam and uploaded are the results.
but I'm guessing the site just flatters you so you post the results...then they have more free advertising.
Like I would be posting these if they told me I looked like Hilary Clinton.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

and then there were two.


1992?-Nov 7, 2007

Pumpkin…I was told that most boxers don’t live past the age of ten…but no one ever told you, you were at least fifteen. Since you chose me when you were a stray at the shelter, I never knew your exact birthday.
I will never forget your fear of water …you gave me a black eye when you charged from the bathroom during your first bath…and you hit bottom in the pool, too much muscle and not enough fat doesn’t float well.
I will not forget those months you spent snuggled against me day and night while I was on bedrest during my pregnancy with E1.
I can still see you and a toddler E1 standing at the front door and barking at the FedEx guy. You taught a toddler how to bark…something I will always remember.
Just last week, you helped yourself to a box of cereal in the cupboard…how can I forget the racket that made in the middle of the night?
I will miss your “snarf”…no other way to describe the noise you made when you wanted something.
You were a sweet and lovable dog…a bed and couch hog…a good friend.
We will miss you.

*updated for clarity*

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

I'll Pick Myself Up

Dear Hubby,
I miss you.
I need you.
I need your arms around me…to hold me…to support me…

I know that I’ll survive…the alternative is not a option…
I just wish you were here so I could fall…and be caught.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Hubby is a huge fan of chocolate chip cookies. Chewy ones, not cakey.
This is the best Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe that I have used…ever.

I originally found the recipe on
but made a few changes. I use less chocolate chips…mainly because they would just melt shipping them to the sandbox if there were as many as the recipe calls for.

I’ve sent these a few times. Each big cookie is in it’s own bag and then wrapped in bubble-wrap. They arrived in perfect condition…and lasted mere minutes.

Six are in a package leaving today.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper.
2. Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
3. In a medium bowl, cream together the melted butter, brown sugar and white sugar until well blended. Beat in the vanilla, egg, and egg yolk until light and creamy. Mix in the sifted ingredients until just blended. Stir in the chocolate chips by hand using a wooden spoon. Drop cookie dough 1/4 cup at a time onto the prepared cookie sheets. Cookies should be about 3 inches apart.
4. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the edges are lightly toasted. Cool on baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

One More Weekend Down

This was a good weekend.
The party was fun, although several people were no-shows…various reasons…kids sick, last minute vacations, soccer overtime, etc… I tried not to be disappointed in the turnout because I was happy to see those that did attend.
Those that did show had a good time. We have a lot of cards for soldiers and some Christmas decorations made. All the kids were exhausted by the end of the day. I have a couple weeks to get things together before I need to ship and I think I’ll need it.
The absolute best part of the day was when Hubby called via Skype. We had a good connection (rare lately) and had a video chat with everyone in the room. It was the middle of the night for him, so he was quiet...everyone else in the tent was asleep, but it was wonderful!

I’m still feeling a little yucky…some bug that I’m sure the kids have too. I feel like I’m in the first trimester of pregnancy…nauseated all the time for no real reason.
Of course, that is so impossible it’s funny.

Something else that was bothering me lately…now that Hubby’s been gone since March…I realized that this deployment would take an emotional toll on the family, but I didn’t realize that it would take such a financial toll as well. Between the increased expenses and the lost wages compared to Hubby’s civilian job, the numbers in our savings buffer were dwindling…fast.
It’s been resolved…I think, but it’s been more of a sacrifice than what I was anticipating.
I’m trying not to think about what we could have done with the missing funds…a couple new cars? padded college funds? an awesome kitchen remodel? what.ever.
I feel like such a whiner.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Flowers for Butterfly Wife

Lemon Stand is guest blogging for Butterfly Wife while Butterfly Wife has a much needed rest. I'm sending these flowers for you BW...enjoy!

Friday, November 2, 2007

Party Time

I’m having a party!

Every year, I have a cookie-exchange party in December. Everyone brings cookies to swap, and I have dozens of sugar cookies to decorate.
This year, I didn’t feel like having the party…maybe because my better half is on the other side of the world? Plus, I’ve been eating much healthier and I’m not in the mood for cookies.

A month or so ago, I saw a post over at One Day at a Time. She was attending a party entitled “Drinking for a Few Good Men”. Her friend was having a party to write cards for the soldiers.

I decided to have a Christmas card party instead. Everyone is bringing a snack and cards. I have blank cards with stamps and stickers for the kids to decorate. I’ll be sending these to Hubby’s unit in a week or so, along with some decorations we’ll be making tomorrow.

It’s been a rough week. E3 can probably be categorized as a hurricane by now. I’ve been missing my Hubby terribly, and we’ve had a few unexpected financial issues arise. I’ve been just plain stressed this week.
My house is a mess, but I think I can turn it around by tomorrow. If not, my friends will understand.
I’m feeling much better today…I think I’m over the hump of this funk I was in.

I’m looking forward to having everyone over tomorrow…I’ll let you know how it goes!