Friday, February 29, 2008

Army training

Stuntman has gone from being an amateur back-seat driver, to being a professional back-seat driver.
He's earned it with his Army training and many miles on Iraqi roads. He's said "you should see me drive backward". I don't care to see that right now, but maybe someday, when we're on a dry lake bed or something.

I had heard stories of soldier's arriving home and driving erratically, or aggressively, so I was worried before Stuntman arrived home. After driving and riding with him, I have no more fears. He's always been a good driver, but his time in Iraq has taken it up a notch. He is more alert, and he did point out a few things on the freeways that would have bothered him if he was driving in Iraq... roadside trash, bridges, other drivers, etc., but I feel safe with him behind the wheel on the SoCal freeways.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008


It's Wednesday... I think... the last few days are a blur.
This bug we had was worse than we thought it was going to be.
Monday night, we were in urgent care for E2 and E3. They couldn't even drink water without vomiting it right back up. E3 puked in the waiting room.. on me... missed the bowl we brought with.
They've both improved greatly, but both are very tired. E2 slept all day yesterday and all night. E3 is quietly playing on the living room floor. Not the usual running around the house with limitless energy.
Last night I slept in my bed, without my blankets, because E1 had puked all over them, and her sister last night. It was the first time I slept in my bed since Saturday night.
Stuntman is currently sleeping. He went from the war to the stomach flu... not a good trade.

On other news...
Stuntman was very impressed and touched by the welcome he and the other soldiers received at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport when they arrived. He said it was amazing. Thanks DFW! The USO Girls are at DFW, check out their blog if you haven't before. Thanks Jamie, Lindsay and, Caroline!

Emma has turned out to be a great little dog. She does bark at Stuntman now and then, but snuggles with him on the sofa... she can't make up her mind. She is amazing with the kids... VERY tolerant and no food aggression whatsoever. She gets along great with our dogs and the neighbor's dog. She can weasel her little body out of the yard, but stays in the front yard. We need to work on the escaping.
Still not quite sure what mix of breeds she is. The vet said she was a "cute composite". Maybe pit bull, corgi, dachshund?

Hopefully, we can begin the kids R&R to-do list tomorrow. They want to go to Disneyland, Legoland, the beach, and the snow while Daddy is home.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Sleep-deprived #2

I haven't been to bed yet. It's 8 am. I think I'll be up all day.
Starting last evening, all 3 E's began puking. Then whatever was in them decided to escape the other direction as well.
I've been comforting kids, changing jammies (mine and the kids, multiple, multiple times), and doing laundry all night.
E2 looks as if she is over it, and E1 and E3 have both improved. There's a little break in the action right now.

I am so glad that I'm not a single parent this time. Not a great welcome home for Stuntman, but I'm glad he's here.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Today's pics

Where's Daddy's plane?

Yes, he's home


I barely slept at all last night...
and not because of the usual reasons...
I wasn't up all night worried about Stuntman's safety, wondering if he's OK, wondering if I'll have another phone call, or worse.

I was up all night with anticipation. Just like a kid on Christmas Eve.

Stuntman is on his way home.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

beer, beef and bras

Checklist for Stuntman’s R&R

Beer. check. (a few good ones are in the fridge, but they didn’t have his favorite at Whole Foods like usual, so I may need to visit BevMo)

Beef. check. Natural-grown rib-eye steaks are in the freezer and the grill is ready.

Bras. check. Visited the lingerie store for a new every-day bra for me and picked up a little something nice for the “honeymoon”.

I told Stuntman that I was making sure that I had all of his favorite snacks in the house while he was here. He asked me to forget a few things so that he would have to make a trip or two to the store. He misses just being able to run to the store for a twinkie or whatever if he wants it. He misses the freedom to come and go as he pleases and the vast selection of things to do and buy. He’s described it as “prison, but without the cable TV”.

to answer Buck's question.
Stuntman's favorite is Reutberger Export Helle
but there are a few Blue Moon and a few Pyramid Hefe Weizen in the fridge

A welcome change of scenery

I was speaking with Stuntman yesterday and he asked how the weather had been here.
"Has it been raining? Is it green around there?"

I said "yes, really green"


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I knew this.

As if I needed a quiz to tell me this.

I'll be seeing my real soul mate soon... Mr. Pitt has nothing on him :)

Take the Quiz

Monday, February 18, 2008

A trip

I finally went to the commissary today. (actually yesterday by the time this posts)
For the first time.
I know. I've heard how much savings there is.. etc. etc...
The closest one is about 80 miles round trip. I need to save quite a bit to make up for the cost of gas, but finally, I had some time that I could go check it out.
I went to Los Angeles AFB... not somewhere I would want to drive to during the week. The traffic on that side of town is horrendous, but it was OK today.
I was surprised to see that it wasn't confusing to shop there. I guess I didn't really know what to expect. It's just a regular-looking grocery store to me. Normal items, and the produce was fine. I didn't check out the meat department, I'm pretty particular about my butcher. The years of working on the farm and caring for cattle, I guess.
Yes, the prices are cheaper than the regular prices at Albertsons or Vons, but I rarely buy anything regular-priced. I stock up on sale items and determine the weeks menu based on the weekly specials. My receipt was lower than it could have been somewhere else, but then adding the surcharge and tip, and gas... I about broke even.
It was a nice adventure, but I don't think I'll make a special trip again.
One thing that I did notice, most of the men shopping there were better looking than average... maybe it's the haircut.

On the way home, we had the fun of driving on the tallest interchange in SoCal. The 170 ft high HOV ramp at the 105/110 interchange. I hold my breath almost the whole way over the thing... the kids think it's cool. I get the heebie jeebies driving over the thing. Was it really necessary to have it so high? I'm sure the model looked great, but did you need to build it?

Saturday, February 16, 2008


Sometimes it can be almost unbearable.
Sometimes it creates vivid and wonderful dreams each night when you sleep.
Sometimes anticipation is the best part… sometimes it is only the beginning of a wonderful journey.

Stuntman is preparing to return home for leave soon. I haven’t seen him since last May, and that was only for a few days. Before that, I hadn’t seen him since the beginning of March.
I keep thinking of the oddest things. Like “when I buy milk tomorrow, it will probably still be in the fridge and fresh when he’s home”, or “only 1 more gas tank fill up before he’s home”, or “the next clean-sheet-night I will have him here in bed with me”.

Waiting to see him reminds me of my flight to California when I moved here to be with him. It seemed like such a long flight. I hadn’t known Stuntman very long, and we planned to marry in a few months. A couple months prior, we had almost driven to Vegas to get married during our first date, but chickened out. We weren’t even living in the same state at the time. I had just flown to LA with a free ticket and we went on what turned out to be a 3 day long date. I had never met anyone before to whom I felt so connected. We were so open with each other. I had never believed in the concept of a soul mate before that, but after I met Stuntman, I did. Talking with him, being with him, just seemed so… natural. Of course, there was a lot of infatuation involved… I can still picture him… mmmmm…. but our relationship has grown to much more than the initial infatuation.
On my flight to California 13 years ago, I really had no idea what lay ahead of me. I was moving half way across the country to be with a man I had only met a couple months before. I remember the gentlemen sitting next to me. They were also flying from Minneapolis to LA. One bought me a drink at the airport bar while waiting for our connecting flight. One gave me his business card because he wanted to set me up with his son. I politely took it, but tossed it later.
I remember waiting for Stuntman to pick me up at the airport to take me home.
This time, I’ll be the one waiting for him to get off of the plane. I can picture him now… mmmmm.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Meet Emma

We've added one more "E" to the house.
We met her at a Humane Society adoption event on Saturday and picked her up from the shelter today.
She is 1 1/2 years old and is a corgi mix. She is just a sweetie.

just making herself at home

E3’s new skill

free myspace layouts

E3 grabbed my cell phone… “what could be the harm?” I thought… “the keypad is locked, and he’s right here, it’ll give me a few moments to finish this school paperwork”

A minute later, E3 is chatting away, just as he always does when he pretends to talk on the phone. Then I hear another voice… Stuntman’s voice. Wha???

E3 had managed to unlock my phone and call his daddy on the other side of the planet… and somehow the call went through.

Time to take Stuntman’s cell phone number out of my “faves” contacts.

Monday, February 11, 2008

My energy will return...

As I was walking around Target yesterday, searching for the items on my list while trying to keep E3 in the shopping cart, I ran into a family that I know. I see and talk to the wife often, but haven’t spoken to the husband for months.
Of course, he asks if Stuntman is still “over there” in a whisper, as if saying “Iraq” would be profane. I say “yes”, and add that he is due home soon for R&R for a couple weeks before returning to complete the mission.
The husband makes the statement “maybe then that will be it and it will be over when the new administration is in”
I didn’t reply… I didn’t have the energy to state how I really felt. Did he forget that it is a volunteer Army? That Stuntman reenlisted well after this war was underway? That we believe in what we’re doing, and would do it again?
I could write on and on… but I don’t even have the energy for that right now.

…and thanks Butterfly Wife, for letting me know that I’m not the only one that wants to stop the teeter-totter

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Slow news day around here...

Wanted: someone with a graspy voice that doesn't like wiener-poopie

Friday, February 8, 2008

It has been a while, hasn't it.

Yesterday, I was at the park with the E's. It was a beautiful spring-like day to ride bikes and play at the playground. I ran into another mom that I hadn't seen for a long time. E1 and E2 were in a tennis class with her daughter last year. At that time, E3 was just a little guy that would sleep in a baby carrier the entire class time while the moms watched.
Yesterday, E3 was running around, trying to shoot a basketball into the hoop (he only missed by 10 feet). E3 was hanging around "the guys", which happened to be a few 6-8 year old boys and a couple dads. I guess he was in need of a little male influence in contrast to all of the pink that is around our house.
Ended up, one of the dads was the husband of the mom from tennis class. She was amazed at how E3 had grown.
Wow, the kids have grown since we saw each other last... a lot has happened since we saw each other...
Then I remembered when I first told her that my husband was in the military and deployed... and he still is.

Monday, February 4, 2008

another appliance bites the dust

Deployment gremlins… enough already!!

Yesterday, I noticed that the beer wasn’t chilling like it should. (or the sodas either for that matter). This am, the milk was warm. I took a look at the thermometer that I have on the shelf… 55 degrees, not good.
So, I pulled out the refrigerator, vacuumed and checked everything that I could think of. I searched online for ideas to fix a bum fridge, tried it, and nada. Still warm.
So… off to Lowes for a new refrigerator. It’s coming tomorrow. It wasn’t as big of a dent in the wallet as I was expecting. The opening isn’t large enough for a really fancy model, and I don’t want ice or water in the door or anything, so I was pretty happy when I picked out just the right one, and it was on sale to boot.
I think the only appliances left in the house from before Stuntman left are the stove and the toaster… and the stove has been acting funny.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

I'm ready

Tomorrow I'm having a Superbowl party at my house. Why? I asked myself the same question. I like the Superbowl... although this year I really don't care who wins. I would have liked to see San Diego or Green Bay in the game, but that didn't happen. I invited a few friends over that also really don't care about the outcome and we're watching for the commercials as much as the game.
Why would I give myself extra work to do? Prepping , cleaning, cooking etc... but I realized the main reason I decided to have the party... it has given me something different to do instead of the usual cleaning and cooking. It helps time pass by more quickly. Anything to bring Stuntman closer to me.

I just finished making a big batch of chili... I have plenty of ice for margaritas...lots of other snacks... and it looks like it'll rain all day tomorrow. That means the dozen or so kids here, will be playing inside. Back to margaritas... I haven't bought a bottle of tequila for over 15 years, actually, I don't remember the last time I bought any alcohol except beer or wine. It's expensive!
Since I only had 3 hours of sleep last night, I'm heading to bed now... I'm wiped out.

Friday, February 1, 2008

what was with people today?

I was so happy to arrive home today... park the car and walk inside.
What was with drivers today? It seemed as if all of the crappy drivers were out on the roads.
I saw several close calls and a few accidents... and I didn't even put on many miles. The weather was perfect, 60's and sunny, so that isn't an excuse.
I keep replaying one incident in my mind. I was waiting to turn left at an intersection, when the pickup in front of me stopped. There were no oncoming cars, so he had no reason to stop. A black coupe came speeding by from the left, through a red light, attempted to navigate a left turn, smacked a car that had just driven by me on my right, jumped a curb and crashed head-on into a tree.
I don't know how the driver of the pickup in front of me saw the black coupe soon enough to stop. The intersection is at an angle, the coupe was coming down the hill at our 8 o'clock. If he hadn't seen it, I would have continued into the intersection and been t-boned by the black coupe.
The car that was hit had minimal damage, but the car that ran the red light and hit the tree was totalled. I pray that the occupants of the car are OK. If they were wearing seat belts, probably OK... if not, probably not.
Police, fire and paramedics were already at the scene of a recent accident about a block ahead of us.