Saturday, September 29, 2007


R&R is almost here! Woo-hoo!

Of course, that means what can go wrong will go wrong.... The only day I had to get the car detailed threatened rain. The morning that L'il Sis was in preschool and I had scheduled a hair and wax appointment, well, my stylist gets horribly ill and has to cancel. While I feel terrible for her and wish her a speedy recovery, I still needed those grey roots to disappear. So, I put my head into the hands of a total stranger and hoped for the best. It worked out okay, but I could have done with less stress to get it all done. When the stylist was shampooing my hair (my favorite part!), I was getting a little head massage. I could feel her trying to work the tension out of my neck and temples. I appreciated the attempt, but almost felt I should tell her it was futile.

Obviously the other thing R&R means is that I'll be absent from the blogosphere for awhile.

*random observation: While driving around running last minute errands, I saw an attractive young woman driving a car with the following on her rear window:
Proud family of
(rank) (name)
serving in Iraq

Maybe it's the cynic in me, but my first thought was that it really wasn't a good idea to advertise the fact that her husband was overseas, not home, not around. Especially in such large letters. I understand she's proud of him. But couldn't she find a way to express that without compromising her own security?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

This is in front of the main gate to an installation that is home to some noisy machines. I like it!
I posted before on the sound of freedom here. What does freedom sound like to you?

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Some serious growth...

With R&R almost here, I wanted to see how much the girls had grown in the almost 8 months since Dad left. You'd think I put fertilizer in their shoes! Big Sis has grown 2-1/2 inches and L'il Sis has grown by 2-3/4 inches. This has got to stop! At this rate, they'll tower over me by the time they are 12!

I must have seriously weak genes.

Friday, September 21, 2007


I'd never had dark chocolate m&m's. Until today. Where have these been all my life?!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

The more things change...

Have you seen this week's Jenny comic strip? Definitely a case of "the more things change, the more they stay the same."

And it's not just the nomadic lifestyle. In this current climate of constant deployments and high stress for military families, this is another area where things have changed considerably from previous eras but so much has also stayed the same.

Previous military families who endured separations during World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and so many more conflicts didn't have access to the communication technologies that we have today. Many of us are able to email or MotoMail our loved ones. Sometimes they are able to call us using morale calls or even satellite phones. Occasionally, units or even individuals are able to arrange VTCs (video tele-conferences) with our service members. Previous generations didn't have any of that.

But what hasn't changed? They are still gone, half a world away in a hostile environment. We still worry. And we wait. Our hearts still break a little each day. We wait and wonder about the person who will return. We wonder if they will still like and love the person we've become, the person they will be returning to. We wonder what we will do if they don't return. We wait and torture ourselves with all the "what ifs." We look at our children and mourn the time they've missed with a parent and all the events and milestones that the other parent has missed. We wait and worry about all the little things and all the big things. We wait while looking forward to homecoming with excitement and anxiety. They are still gone. We are still left behind waiting and trying to hold it all together. Waiting for them to step back into our shared life. That hasn't changed.

The book is not about a military family, but the first page of Audrey Niffenegger's The Time Traveler's Wife resonated with me in terms of being the one left to wait. It begins with these lines:
"....It's hard being left behind. I wait for Henry, not knowing where he is, wondering if he's okay. It's hard to be the one who stays."
A little later, she asks: "Why is love intensified by absence?"
Then: "I wait for him. Each moment is as slow and transparent as glass. Through each moment I can see infinite moments lined up, waiting. Why has he gone where I cannot follow?"

The waiting hasn't changed.

*update: I'm not recommending the book at this point as I haven't gotten very far in it yet. I'd only just started reading it and the first page just resonated a bit.

Friday, September 14, 2007

random movie

One of the benefits of deployments is that I get to fill our movie queue with all sorts of things that I know Hubs wouldn't watch. I've caught up on movies that the rest of the planet has already seen, chick flicks, BBC TV shows, and other totally random films, like The Man Who Sued God. Sometimes I watch things that are really good but because they are independent or foreign films probably didn't get much play here in the States.

Last night, I watched Sweet Land. I'd never heard of it so went into it with no expectations. It was wonderful! The story is of a German mail order bride arriving in 1920 Minnesota to a hostile Norwegian-American community. Prejudices run rampant and she is unable to procure the paperwork necessary to actually get married. But beyond that, it is a love story of two strangers who come to respect and love each other despite/because of their obstacles. You can see the growing attraction and sexual tension between the couple. You can see the love growing in their eyes as they surreptitiously watch each other. But that's just about all you see. Anticipation is almost another character in this film. But I guess I relate to that these days!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

September 11

Six years ago, we were in San Francisco on a vacation. We stood in our hotel room glued to the TV. At first, we thought it was a movie or something. It took us awhile to realize that we were watching news coverage of actual events that were taking place that day. Very quickly, Hubs was on the phone with his unit. Then I was on the phone to arrange for an early return home. There was nothing we could do that day, so we ventured out into the city. It was so eerie. Everything was so quiet and almost deserted. It was as if the entire city was in shock. I guess it was, really.

I feel like I should have something to say today. But I don't. Words really aren't enough.

Monday, September 10, 2007


L'il Sis started morning preschool last week. She's getting to be such a big girl! (And I'm reminded of that when she sings "I'm a big girl now!" from the Pull-ups commercials.)

L'il Sis and a classmate waiting at the gate for their teacher to come and get them.

Welcome to Preschool! L'il Stinker never even looked back once the teacher had them all lined up and headed to their classroom. Not once!

At the end of her first day, L'il Sis was happy to tell me what a great day she'd had.

As much as I'd been looking forward to this day, it was a little sad, too. She's potty trained and now she's started preschool. She's no longer a baby, or even a toddler. L'il Sis is officially a preschooler.