Tuesday, January 31, 2006

The best laid plans.....

Well.. I told you I didn't know when I'd post again.
Apparently, it's today... since Beth tagged me with a meme!

4 Jobs You Have Had In Your Life
1. Concession Stand Worker- I've had this job a couple of times- first at a swim club and then at a combination disco/roller skating rink.
2. Broker- I'm still one. Sort of.
3. Gorgio Girl- You know the crazy ladies that chase you around department stores trying to spray you with perfumes? I was one for Gorgio. I also did a bit for Clinique make up.
4. Legal Secretary- I held this job for oh, maybe two weeks tops. The lawyer I worked for thought I told her I had a "Two martini lunch". What I really said was that I "went to Margarita's for lunch" (My favorite Mexican restaurant). She wouldn't accept my explanation and fired me. Only time I've ever been fired, and it was for going out to lunch. *sigh*

4 Movies You Would Watch Over and Over
1. Pretty Woman- It's my favorite movie of all time. A classic chick flick!
2. xXx- starring my boy, Vin, and host to my favorite movie line "Oh... the things I'm gonna do for my country". *faints*
3. Mary Poppins/Peter Pan (the *real* one, with Mary Martin). It's a tie, but I just love these two movies!
4. Lethal Weapon/What Women Want- Mel Gibson. Need I say more?

4 Places You Have Lived
1. In an apartment with a girl who ended up using cocaine- and selling it. Yeah... I moved out pretty quickly. *shudder*
2. Fairborn, OH. I was born at Wright Patt- where else would I have lived? I miss hearing the giant planes overhead! Military planes have a different sound than an airliner. When in Dayton, my head snaps to the sky when I hear the familiar drone of cargo planes.
3. Centerville, OH. Just south of Dayton- and where the school I consider myself to be a graduate from even though we moved just before my senior year.
4. Cincinnati, OH. STOP LAUGHING. I've never lived anywhere outside of Ohio. *groan*

4 TV Shows You Love to Watch
1. CSI
2. Criminal Minds
3. Jag
4. Crossing Jordan

4 Places You Have Been On Vacation
1. Barbados- honeymoon. It was wonderful- I highly recommend it! That's also where I developed a taste for Mt. Gay Rum. Oh man.. is it ever good!
2. Puerto Rico- Well... it wasn't really a vacation. I was there working with Red Cross on hurrican relief. The middle of the country is WONDERFUL. I hated San Juan, but LOVED the southern and eastern coastal towns and the lush forests in the middle. I would LOVE to go back.
3. Hell- I was 6 months pregnant with Thomas when we went on a Carribean Cruise. We went started in Ft. Lauderdale and had stops in Cozumel, Grand Caymen and New Orleans. While on Grand Caymen, we went to a turtle farm, went swimming with sting rays and went to Hell... and back.
4. Colorado- Hubby's brother and his wife live in Longmont. It's beautiful! I love the climate.

4 Websites You Visit Daily
1. The Castle
2. ALa's
3. Blackfive
4. um. does my own count?

4 Favorite Foods
1. CRAB LEGS!!!!
3. My Mom's German Chocolate Cake (she also makes killer swiss steak and beef strokin' off)
4. Starbuck's "Venti Soy Gingerbread Latte" or.... "Venti Soy Pumpkin Spice Latte" or.... "Venti Soy Caramel Macchiato"... or when I want something warm but not coffee, I go for their Hot Spiced Caramel Apple Cider. (yes, John- I know how to order. Quickly.)

4 Places You Would Rather Be Right Now
1. Someplace warm! Like Puerto Rico, or Florida (ALa and family just got back from Disney. I love the House of Mouse! I doesn't help that my boss calls me from Naples every day either!)
2. On an African Safari
3. California- maybe San Diego, or San Fransisco
4. At a spa, getting pampered with massages, mud baths, facials, pedicures, manicures, and who knows what else.

4 People to Tag
NONE! You all escape the wrath of the EEEEEEVIL MEME!

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Making a clean break.

I don't post that often.
When I do, it's usually stupid shit.

I started this thing in order to make a comment on CBTFW's site- I had to have a blogger ID. I started using it as a way to vent. A place to put my thoughts in writing. Then, the next day, I'd delete it before anyone could possibly read it.

Then Sgt. B found out I had it, because I responded to a meme he posted. Then John found out, and linked me.


So much for my private place to vent. (I know. The 'net isn't private, but I could write without saving it to Word, which, in my mind, made it "safer" somehow.)

I need that place again.
I don't know when I'll post here again.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Damn it, Janet...

...I love you, but your singing SUCKS BIG TIME.
(well, ok.. I don't *really* love her, but I have a hard time associating the name "Janet" with anything other than "The Rocky Horror Picture Show")
Janet Reno sang at a karaoke event in Miami Wendesday night. I'm not sure what kind of respect she's looking for after singing THIS song! (yes, there's video if your ears can handle the pain)
AAAIIIIIIII!!!!!!!!!! My EARS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

... and in other news...
AFSista got to meet one of her blog brotha's last night! SangerM is spending some time just north of me, so we got together for dinner. woot! woot!
Mrs. SangerM has her hands full with that one... hehe!!! We shared stories about our kids and many other topics. (BillT- Sanger and I were at Border's looking for some Frijid Pink but had no luck- but at least he knew who they were, which is a huge step forward for me!)
If you ever get the chance to meet Sanger.. don't miss it. It was a real treat, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. If you haven't been to his Grand Retort blog, you've been missing some great essays. Wotta mind!

Friday, January 27, 2006


If a single mother gives up her baby for adoption, and a man known to be the baby's father steps up to the plate and wants to take custody... WHY WON'T THE COURTS ALLOW THIS?????

In a ruling yesterday, Hamilton County (Cincinnati, OH) Judge Thomas Lipps denied the father custody of his 7 week old baby boy because he never married the mother. The judge is requiring a paternity test before granting even temporary custody to the father. The mother VOLUNTARILY gave up the child for adoption when he was 7 weeks old. When the father found out, he asked for custody. At the emergency custody hearing yesterday, the judge said no. He wants to wait until the DNA tests are back, which will take 3 months... and then he issued a court order requiring the mother to take the child back.

So help me... if anything happens to this baby over the next three months....
I am just sick. SICK.

Giddy-Up! Time for a Blogger Round Up!

First up: Irish Diablo's taking on Hollywood and their ability to turn 9/11 into a money making affair... for THEMSELVES.

Trek's declaring Chapter 11.

Sanger has a great post up about the book "Night" by Elie Weisel. More importantly, he relays his thoughts about the Holocaust. Here's an exerpt:
And so, finally, it comes to this: Night is a testament to Jewish failure--in my mind, the worst kind of failure imaginable, that of not even trying to survive, of not even going so far as to run away! It was the failure of being so arrogant as to suppose that people would not harm them, in the face of all history and evidence to the contrary. It was the failure of assuming that meek compliance meant survival, despite the evident brutality and unambiguous intentions of the Nazis. It was the ultimate failure of being willing to die just because someone else wanted them to.
Not at all what I was expecting...go read it yourself and see what he has to say. It's REALLY interesting. I'll give you all "the scoop" on Sanger tomorrow- since I'm meeting him for dinner tonight. WOOT! Mini-Blog-Denizen Meet!

The conviction of Chief Warrant Officer Lewis E. Welshofer Jr. in the death of an Iraqi general he was interrogating has been all over the damn place this week. I don't know what to think about it, other than I think Welshofer lost his frikkin' mind while "interviewing" the general. Is the punishment too lenient? Too severe? I really don't know. The guy was badly beaten by the Iraqi's before we ever got ahold of him, but *our* CWO is the one who actually killed the guy. And for what? Something I'm guessing we'll never really know.

Unless you've been under a rock, you should all know by now that American Soldier is back in the Sandbox and loving it- even though the conditions suck big time. And you should also know that Currie, Maj. K and Thunder6 are back in Cali. They've been home for a couple of weeks now, busy decompressing and reconnecting. Thanks guys! It's been a rough ride for ya, but you made it, and the world is better off because of the job you did!

Wordsmith At War is going through a tough time. His Mother just passed away, and his kids miss him desperately. Please go give him a hug. Especially the manly ones you guys hand out, m-kay? Thanks.

Boggs may be a "Bored Soldier"... but his readers sure aren't! Check it out. He's a cool dude.

When I was younger, we went to a Lutheran church in Kettering, Ohio. I *loved* that church. It's the kind of church I'm still trying to find for myself here in Cincinnati. The youth group was active, and fantastic. So were the pastors. Simply wonderful people. One of the girls was noticably shorter than the rest of us. She was a really cute girl- lovely blonde curls and great eyes. On many days, however, she couldn't hardly move. At all. She had Juvenile Arthritis. Let me tell you, if you've ever seen an adult with arthritis, it's hard to watch. My Mom has it really bad. Some days she can't even turn the shower on, and my Dad had to make this handle-thingie in order for her to open the gas cap on the car. I just learned that The Hawwt Cowboy (also from Ohio, but up north) is raising money for the Arthritis Foundation- because his daughter is also a victim of this horrible condition. He tells her story, and then blegs for donations. I'm joining that bleg.
Please donate to the Arthritis Foundation today.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Sweet??? Music....

Kevin is at the age where he's making up songs and singing them- and "GOSH"ing me when I don't recognize them and can't sing along.
Sorry... I'm just *not* familiar with "Adam and Eve ate a bad apple".
Usually his songs are a compilation of Bible songs and verses.

Not today.

Today the little darling broke out with a rousing rendition of "I love my little beaver".

"I loooooove my beaver. I loooooooove my beaver. My little beaver... oh, how I love you. I looooooove little beaver."

I'm not sure, but I think I owe Karen another apology.

heh. At least he wasn't singing "I love weiner dogs".

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Dear Senator Kennedy

Mary Jo has a message for you:

I would have been 65 years of age this year.

Read about me and my killer below:

When Sen. Ted Kennedy was merely just another Democrat bloating on Capitol Hill on behalf of liberal causes, it was perhaps excusable to ignore his deplorable past.

But now that he's become a leading Republican attack dog, positioning himself as Washington's leading arbiter of truth and integrity, the days for such indulgence are now over.

It's time for the GOP to stand up and remind America why this chief spokesman had to abandon his own presidential bid in 1980 - time to say the words "Mary Jo Kopechne" out loud.

As is often the case, Republicans have deluded themselves into thinking that most Americans already know the story of how this "Conscience of the Democratic Party" left Miss Kopechne behind to die in the waters underneath the Edgartown Bridge in July 1969, after a night of drinking and partying with the young blonde campaign worker. But most Americans under 40 have never heard that story, or details of how Kennedy swam to safety, then tried to get his cousin Joe Garghan to say he was behind the wheel.

Those young voters don't know how Miss Kopechne, trapped inside Kennedy's Oldsmobile, gasped for air until she finally died, while the Democrats' leading Iraq war critic rushed back to his compound to formulate the best alibi he could think of.

Neither does Generation X know how Kennedy was thrown out of Harvard on his ear 15 years earlier -- for paying a fellow student to take his Spanish final.. Or why the US Army denied him a commission because he cheated on tests.

As they listen to the Democrats' "Liberal Lion" accuse President Bush of "telling lie after lie after lie" to get America to go to war in Iraq, young voters don't know about that notorious 1991 Easter weekend in Palm Beach when Uncle Teddy rounded up his nephews for a night on the town, an evening that ended with one of them credibly accused of rape.

It's time for Republicans to state unabashedly that they will no longer "go along with the gag" when it comes to Uncle Ted's rants about deception and moral turpitude inside the Bush White House.

And if the Republicans don't, let's do it ourselves by passing this forgotten disgrace around the Internet to wake up memories of what a fraud and fake Teddy really is.

The Democratic Party should be ashamed to have the national disgrace from Massachusetts as their spokesman.

(via email from my boss.)

To answer Kat's comment about him being a "Republican attack dog"... you are probably right. It should probably read "Democratic attack dog". But the intent was to point out that he's attacking Republicans, and the Republicans are standing by letting it happen. The younger generation doesnt' know all of his sorrid history, and look to him as a "hero" because he's attacking Bush and everything Republican. Young kids seem to be drawn to the Dem's due to their "take care of you" attitude. He's claiming moral high ground now, and for no reason other than to forward the Dem agenda and bash the Bush administration.
It's high time we call foul and let these kids know what an ass Kennedy really is.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

This is all John and Sanger's fault....

You two got me thinking about pet peeves, following your rants about things that piss you off. Things like people, who have obviously been to McDonalds at *least* once or twice a month SINCE BIRTH, who, when asked for their order, say "hmm....let me see here. What's on the menu?" I'll tell you what's on the frikkin' menu! Big Mac, Quarter Pounder, McChicken, McNuggets, and the seasonal McRib is even available now. *moron*

I *hate* it when I order food without cheese, and it comes with cheese anyway! I happen to be EXTREMELY allergic to dairy products. I am not just lactose intolerant. I am actually allergic. In the same way people have severe reactions to peanuts and shellfish, cheese can kill me. KILL ME.

PEOPLE. PLEASE. Is it *that* hard to do? Instead of putting the cheese *on* the sandwich... you leave it *off* of the sandwich. Even a 3 year old could follow those directions. Or how about charging me extra at McDonalds for bagel sauce on my Egg McMuffin? I order them without cheese, with bagel sauce. Do I get a credit for the "no cheese" request? NO. Instead, I get charged the full amount for the sandwich AND and extra .20 for the bagel sauce!

Another example: We order lunch from the local pizza place about two or three times a month...and two or three times a month, I have to call them back to have my sandwich remade because they put cheese on it. AGAIN. They've even banned us from ordering online because THEY have made so many mistakes. Now we have to call a supervisor, who then takes the order and calls it in to the store manager. The store manager is supposed to make our orders. THE MANAGER CAN'T EVEN GET IT RIGHT MOST OF THE TIME!


OK. That's my big pet peeve of the day. Would somebody *please* pass me some crackers..WITHOUT CHEESE... to go with my whine?

Monday, January 23, 2006

(clap) (clap) (clap) (clap) Deep in the heart... of Texas!

I just reached hit number 15,000!
It was a referral from The Castle on my "Were-Kittenocracy" post, from a Soldier in San Antonio.


Congrats on being #15,000.... you win... ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! (but it's kinda kewl, don't you think?)


There ought to be a word that describes the incredibly funny things my son says and does... so I just invented one. Kevinisms. I know... it's not terribly creative, but it works!

Some recent examples of "Kevinisms":

I was in the shower the other day when I heard the boys fighting outside the door. Then Kevin started crying in that "YOU JUST HURT ME!!!!!!!!!" way, and came busting through the door. He's 5. He notices things about bodies. I don't normally let him see me nekkid, but he was obviously in pain, so I let him stay. I turned off the water and started drying off. I asked him what happened, and, through his tears, he said "Thomas kicked me in the knee!" So I asked him why. "NO REASON!" I asked him what he said to Thomas just prior to the kicking "NOTHING!". "Well, what were you two doing?" "NOTHING!"
OK... "Kevin, Thomas wouldn't just come up and kick you out of the blue- something mu" (interupted) "MOMMY!!!! He didn't kick me in my blue- he kicked me IN THE KNEE!"

(thank GOD I had the towel around my head to conceal my grin and subsequent laughter. I still don't know where his "blue" is... and I'm pretty sure I don't want to know)

And then there's this one:
"Mommy- did you know that ever (yes, "ever"... not "every") time you go to JAIL, you meet God and Jesus?"

"No, Kevin.. I was not aware of that, and I'm not so sure that's true"

"OH!!! Wait!!! Ever time you go to *HEAVEN* you meet God and Jesus- not *jail*"

(eyebrow raising... alrighty then...I wonder why he's associating "jail" with "heaven" these days...)

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Were-kittenocracy 101

Ten Top Trivia Tips about Were-kitten!

  1. Were-kitten is the world's smallest mammal.
  2. Were-kittenocracy is government by were-kitten.
  3. Some birds use were-kitten to orientate themselves during migration!
  4. A lump of were-kitten the size of a matchbox can be flattened into a sheet the size of a tennis court.
  5. Abraham Lincoln, who invented were-kitten, was the only US president ever granted a patent.
  6. Peanuts and were-kitten are beans!
  7. Were-kitten was invented in China in the eleventh century, but was only used for fireworks, never for weapons.
  8. The state nickname of Iowa is 'The were-kitten state'.
  9. Were-kitten can clean her ears with her tongue, which is over thirty-nine inches long!
  10. The colour of were-kitten is no indication of her spiciness, but size usually is.
I am interested in - do tell me about

*LAUGHING* Oh man... this is just too darn funny. Thanks Mindy!

Sumthin' fun to do

You Are Sunshine

Soothing and calm
You are often held up by others as the ideal
But too much of you, and they'll get burned

You are best known for: your warmth

Your dominant state: connecting

You Are Mexican Food

Spicy yet dependable.
You pull punches, but people still love you.

You Should Drive a Saturn Sky

You're sleek and smooth, and you need a car to match your hot persona.
Besides, sometimes you want your top up - and sometimes you want it down.

You Are a Boston Creme Donut

You have a tough exterior. No one wants to mess with you.
But on the inside, you're a total pushover and completely soft.
You're a traditionalist, and you don't change easily.
You're likely to eat the same doughnut every morning, and pout if it's sold out.

You Are a Seeker Soul

You are on a quest for knowledge and life challenges.
You love to be curious and ask a ton of questions.
Since you know so much, you make for an interesting conversationalist.
Mentally alert, you can outwit almost anyone (and have fun doing it!).

Very introspective, you can be silently critical of others.
And your quiet nature makes it difficult for people to get to know you.
You see yourself as a philosopher, and you take everything philosophically.
Your main talent is expressing and communicating ideas.

Souls you are most compatible with: Hunter Soul and Visionary Soul

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Coffee with Congresswoman Jean Schmidt

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Remember this famous line?
"Cowards cut and run. Marines never do."

Those words were spoken by *MY* Congresswoman, Jean Schmidt, in front of Congress and the world, after being in office less than 90 days. I've never been so proud of *MY* representative. Today, I got the chance to tell her just that in person.

I got an invitation to attend a town meeting with Schmidt- which I eagerly attended this morning. She spoke for about 45 minutes about her first 137 days in office, and then opened the floor to questions.

The first thing she got involved in once in Washington was new Eminent Domain legislation. She co-sponsored HR 4128 protecting our right to own property. She said it "frosts my cookies" (I loved that line!) to know that municipalities and states have allowed developers to use Eminent Domain to take over private property to build revenue-generating properties, like shopping centers. HR 4128, The Private Property Rights Protection Act, enhances penalties for states and local governments who abuse their eminent domain power. Under HR 4128, local governments which allow developers to claim eminent domain when taking over private property purely for the purpose of increasing tax revenue through economic development will forfeit ALL federal transportation funding for TWO YEARS. (APPLAUSE! APPLAUSE!)

She also wants to enhance federal guidelines for states to follow regarding sexual predator laws. HR 3132 will require known sexual predators to check in with their state of residence twice a year to report any employment or residence changes. It also requires them to notify their state of residence if they cross state lines for any reason. Under this proposal, parole violators will get mandatory, immediate jail sentences between 5-20 years. HOOAH! Go get 'em Jean!

Other than the Eminent Domain legislation she co-sponsored, I was most interested in hearing about her border protection proposals. The US government has allocated $250 MILLION DOLLARS to help border states pay for medical bills incurred by illegals. 29% of the prisoners held in federal prisons are NOT US citizens- they are illegals, costing the federal government nearly $900 MILLION DOLLARS in 2002 alone. HR 698, the Citizenship Reform Act will deny citizenship to children born to illegals within our borders. (YESSSSSSSSSSS) HR 3150 will impose mandatory minimum jail sentences for certain illegals who, after being deported, cross our borders again. These two pieces of legislation are pending approval, and I hope to GOD they pass.

She also detailed her recent trip to the Middle East. She drew loud applause when she told us that our soldiers in Afghanistan "are committed to finishing the job". Damn straight! She met with the president of Afghanistan, who told her he had "grave concerns" for the safety of their country when the UN is scheduled to take over security in 18 months. He wants *us* to stay. He knows who the Big Dog is, and knows the power of our forces. In Iraq she met more US soldiers who told her in no uncertain terms that they were well taken care of, didn't need any additional equipment or tools- all they kept asking for was SUPPORT in the fight. She again reiterated their dedication to finishing the mission, and noted the extreme patriotism displayed by our soldiers.

One thing she noticed about the people of Iraq was the abundance of communication devices. Nearly every house had a satellite dish, and most people had cell phones. Why is this important, you ask? Because outside communication is how the Iraqi people learn about what a true democracy can be like. It's how they know we aren't there just for the black gold under the sand- we truly do want them to succeed as an independent democratic society. In talking to the Iraqi's, she asked them what was the biggest difference they've noticed in their lives now that Saddam is gone. The overwhelming answer was "FREEDOM OF SPEECH". She noted that "a democracy without freedom of speech is NOT a democracy" and "when you have freedom of speech, you remove the veil of oppression". WOW. I was floored. She's right. Think about how many things we, as Americans, can say or do without fear of repercussion from our government. Hell, we can burn the flag without being arrested. It doesn't get much more UNpatriotic than that, but we have that freedom here, due to freedom of speech.

The Q&A period was dominated by people concerned with the new Medicare/Medicaid prescription drug program which went into affect on 1/1/06. It sounds like a real nightmare- I'm glad I don't have to worry about it right now. I took the opportunity to make a statement, rather than ask a question of Mrs. Schmidt. Here's what I told her:

"As a freshman Congresswoman, I wanted to let you know how proud I was to see you stand up in front of the world and let everyone know we would not "cut and run". (APPLAUSE! APPLAUSE!) That took a LOT of guts. I'm a huge supporter of Rob Portman, so when he took the cabinet post and left our district, I was pretty disappointed. When you were running against a war veteran, I had a hard time deciding who to vote for. I am now convinced I made the right choice." (APPLAUSE! APPLAUSE!)

Congresswoman Schmidt, I am VERY proud that you represent me in Washington.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Abortion outlawed in Ohio????

State Representative Tom Brinkman (R) introduced House Bill 228 nine months ago. The bill would make it a felony to perform abortions in Ohio, or even transport a woman across state lines to get an abortion. If convicted, the offender could be sentenced to 15 years in prison. According to several sources, there are NO EXCEPTIONS to this rule- not even to save the life of the mother, or cases of rape or incest. The bill allows for the prosecution of those who "assist or perform" the abortion- not the mother of the child.

The argument *against* allowing rape or incest victims to receive abortions is outrageously stupid to me. "It is inconsistent to have a total abortion ban and include such exceptions. Women who are the victims of sexual assault should not be doubly victimized with an abortion-an easy out for the sexual predator, but an additional, sometimes crushing, burden for the woman." WTF???? You have GOT to be kidding me... the abortion is an "easy out" for the PREDATOR? Give me a fucking break.


If passed, this would be a MAJOR blow to Roe v. Wade. Obviously, this bill is being used as a gateway to make the Supreme Court revisit the legality of abortion. Initially, Ohio House Speaker Jon Husted said the House would not hold hearings on the bill, but has now reversed that decision, stating that there would be "at least one hearing."

Personally, I am torn on this issue. I am morally opposed to abortion as a birth control method, but legally, I support the woman's right to receive early-term abortions. Just as I do not morally support flag burning, but I do support the legal right of the asshats who burn the flag, I believe that abortions should be legal. I do not believe abortions should be allowed after 12 weeks- the fetus is too far developed at that point and is able to feel pain. The only reason I would support abortion after 12 weeks is to save the life of the mother. Under NO circumstances to I support partial-birth abortions. That is pure and out-right murder and inhumane.

I know most of you do not live in Ohio, but this is not an issue that will go away if it is passed. It is well worth watching, and if you DO live in Ohio, DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS.

(trackback thankfully provided by John, Bill and Dusty)

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

You tell 'em Sgt!

“I tell you, I love this country more than my birthplace,” Sar said. “I came from Cambodia and I lost (a lot) of my family there, and nobody here can tell me what it’s like, the loss of freedom. ... This country gave me so much, and this is a small price to pay, the long deployments away from home.”

Once again, I am in awe of one of our Soldiers. God bless them all.

In this day and age of our own government officials (Thank you, Mr. EX-MARINE Murtha) telling our guys they shouldn't have joined up, and their mission is not sound... we have a Cambodian refugee set the record straight. America is a wonderful country- I'm damn proud to have been born here. It's too bad all Americans don't see it that way.


This is what I woke up to this morning:
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I absolutely *love* it when there's a wet snow that sticks to the tree limbs, but doesn't stick to the roads! It's absolutely gorgeous. I was using Bryan's fancy-dancy camera with the new flash, and didn't quite get it right, so most of the pictures are too dark. But trust me- it's beautiful in Cincinnati today!

Elvis doesn't mind the snow either- he loves running around in it, flipping it up with his nose. He's up to about 26 pounds now, and he's not even 6 months old yet. I think he's gonna be a big dog!
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And speaking of Elvis.....
Monday morning the boys were playing with him under the kitchen table. They were having SO much fun- laughing, and squealing. Then I heard this: "Look! His WEINER is coming out!" (followed by riotous laughter from underneath the table) The dog was obviously "happy". Then Kevin said, "HAHAHA! His weiner looks like a CRAYON!"
At which point, I retired to the other room, tears streaming down my face, trying to conceal my laughter. Then the thought hit me: I was at least hoping my dog would be hung like a Sharpie marker.... *oh well*

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Nature's Nightlights

A couple of years ago, on a warm early summer evening, I looked outside to see little flickering lights in the backyard. Fireflies had returned once again! It was after bedtime for the kids, but not by much, and I knew that Thomas was still upstairs awake in his bed. I went up to his room, entered the door, and found him playing in his bed. I told him that I needed his help with something downstairs, and to come down with me right away. He, of course, was puzzled. "What could Mommy possibly want me to help her with right now?"

Once downstairs, I took him outside. Puzzled beyond believe, he followed me. "Mommy! Why are we outside? It's DARK out here!" I'm pretty sure he thought I was leading him outside to clean up toys left in the yard. Instead, I produced a jar, and told him, in no uncertain terms, that I did, in fact, need his help: Catching fireflies.

His face lit up almost as much as the little lanterns flying around the backyard. We ran around catching the little neon bugs for a good half hour before I shooed him back to bed again. I loved that night. It reminded me what being a kid is about, and how we, as parents, get to rediscover wonders of the world through the eyes of our children. Have you ever stopped to look at cracks in the sidewalk? Or looked at the many colors and fossils in rocks? What about the many creatures you can find living in streams? I'm sure you've done all of these things... but have you done them as an ADULT, with a child by your side? It changes your perspective. Catching fireflies with Thomas that night took me back to my childhood and the countless hours I spent with my brother catching fireflies.

Some things never change, but sometimes, they get better with age.

Carolyn Hall

Little lamps of the dusk
You fly low and gold
When the summer evening
Starts to unfold.
So that all the insects,
Now, before you pass,
Will have light to see by,
Undressing in the grass.

But when the night has flowered,
Little lamps agleam,
You fly over treetops
Following a dream.
Men wonder from their windows
That a firefly goes so far-
They do not know your longing
To be a shooting star.


Ever see those little pieces of "something" floating around in your eyes? I used to think it was little pieces of fuzz that somehow got stuck behind my eyeball. I learned a few years ago it was actually a tear in my cornea. Who knew? I thought everyone saw little "floaters" when they closed their eyes. Guess it was just me.

Sometimes, when I'm deep in thought, I will blink and these little floaters will appear. They look like little squiggles that just float around in the darkness behind my eyes. Sometimes I mentally follow their flight while thinking about this or that. I guess it provides me with a little distraction while I'm deep in thought.

Today I read the most amazing tribute to a man who died this weekend. Kat is an incredibly "deep" writer, and very descriptive. She wrote me a really long comment in my last post, because it was too long for Haloscan to accept it in one shot. I've always respected her mind, and she knows more about history than anyone I've ever "known". Kat's Uncle Lewis died on Saturday. He's a decorated Vietnam Vet, and someone I'm sure I would have loved to know. I hope that when you close your eyes, Kat, you see the man he was prior to 2002, when his health really took a turn for the worse. I hope you know that his death brings him peace, and your memories of him will also bring you peace over time.

Rest in peace (finally), Lewis Henry.

Friday, January 13, 2006

How do you stop the hitting?

It's a serious parenting question.
I want to know how to stop my child from hitting me, Kevin and the dog. Thomas has become increasingly violent, and I don't know how to stop it. He routinely throws things, punches, hits us with objects and with his fists. He throws verbal barbs like a bitter old man who's mad at the world and everything in it.

How do I stop this cycle of physical outbursts?

He's not always angry and violent. He can be very sweet and loving... but man, oh man... when he's not? Watch out, world.

Please. I'm VERY open to suggestions.

Oh yeah? Well, when I was a kid......

I'm over the ripe old age of thirty, I can't help but look around and notice the youth of today. You've got it so easy! I mean, compared to my childhood, you live in Utopia! And I hate to say it but you kids today you don't know how good you've got it! I mean, when I was a kid we didn't have The Internet. If we wanted to know something, we had to go to the library and look it up ourselves, in the card catalog!!

There was no email! We had to actually write somebody a letter... with a Pen! Then you had to walk all the way across the street and put it in the mailbox and it would take like a week to get there!

There were no MP3's or Napsters! You wanted to steal music, you had to hitchhike to the record store and shoplift it yourself! Or you had to wait around all day to tape it off the radio and the DJ'd usually talk over the beginning and mess it all up!

And talk about hardship? You couldn't just download porn! You had to steal it from your brother or bribe some homeless dude to buy you a copy of "Hustler" at the 7-11! Those were your options!

We didn't have fancy stuff like Call Waiting! If you were on the phone and somebody else called they got a busy signal, that's it! And we didn't have fancy Caller ID Boxes either! When the phone rang, you had no idea who it was! It could be your school, your mom, your boss, your bookie, your drug dealer, a collections agent, you just didn't know!!! You had to pick it up and take your chances, mister!

We didn't have any fancy Sony Playstation video games with high-resolution 3-D graphics! We had the Atari 2600! With games like "Pong", "Space Invaders" and "Asteroids" and the graphics were bad, REAL BAD!! Your guy was a little square! You actually had to use your imagination! And there were no multiple levels or screens, it was just one screen forever! And you could never win. The game just kept getting harder and harder and faster and faster until you died!...Just like LIFE!

When you went to the movie theater there's no such thing as stadium seating! All the seats were the same height! If a tall guy or some old broad with a hat sat in front of you and you couldn't see, you were stuck!

Sure, we had cable television, but back then that was only like 15 channels and there was no onscreen menu and no remote control! You had to use a little book called a TV Guide to find out what was on! You were had when it came to channel surfing! You had to get off your couch and walk over to the TV to change the channel and there was no Cartoon Network either! You could only get cartoons on Saturday
Morning. Do you hear what I'm saying!?! We had to wait ALL WEEK for cartoons, you spoiled little brats!

And we didn't have microwaves, if we wanted to heat something up...we had to use the stove or go build a fire...imagine that! If we wanted popcorn, we had to use that stupid JiffyPop thing and shake it over the stove forever like an idiot. That's exactly what I'm talking about! You kids today have got it too easy. You're spoiled.

You guys wouldn't have lasted five minutes back in 1980.

(receive via email from my Aunt Shelia today... no, I'm not nearly that witty or angry)

Wednesday, January 11, 2006


Some people have WAAAAAAY too much time on their hands, and WAAAAAAY more imagination than moi!

(btw... it's just not the same without a speaker)

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Hail Mary, full of GRACE

Just because my parents passed along the "clumsy" gene that just caused me to slide down the back stairs, and made- yes, MADE- Kevin get out of the tub, walk across the linoleum and take a giant header into the the door.... does NOT mean I'm a klutz.


maybe it does.

*limps off... nursing giant bruise forming on my bicep*

Taking control of their destiny


The “Cobra” 3rd Battalion, 2nd Brigade, 4th Iraqi Army (YES...you read that right...IRAQI ARMY) has been handed the keys to FOB Bernstein in the northern Sallah-Dihn Province. The 2nd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 101st Airborne Division is no longer responsible for the base, or the security of the areas surrounding it. HOT DAMN!

The commander of Iraq's 2nd Brigade, Lt. Col. Safa, said “We are from the people. And, we work for the people. If we don’t protect them, who can protect them?” The Iraqi people are one step closer to being on their own, which puts our guys one step closer to home. (source)

And new Dad, Heartless Libertarian, wrote an adorable speech for President Bush to deliver to El Presidente Fox of Mexico regarding the status of our border. I'm STILL smiling after reading *that* rant.

gimmesome JUICE!

Oh man. Does this ever bring back memories.....

When I was about 5, my Dad decided to make his own wine at home. Every day, I would help with whatever needed to be done. It was very fun! So when the day came when the wine was finished, Dad decided that I should get to taste the final product.
He had a friend over, and popped the cork. (Ok.. it was a screw cap, but who's looking for details here?) They each took a taste... and made the most god-awful faces trying to swallow the swill.
I, on the other hand, enjoyed this first taste of fermented grape juice. My parents thought it was pretty funny that I liked it, and they thought it was nasty.
It wasn't quite so funny when they realized I was stumbling drunk though, and made me stop drinking.

Parents. Always ruining a good drunk.... especially when you're only 5.

Don't worry- we'll keep the light on for ya!

A Cincinnati woman who told her family she would be able to return from the dead... is apparently not holding up her end of the bargain.
When Johannas Pope died in 2002 at the age of 61, her caretaker put her in her favorite chair in room upstairs, turned on the TV, cranked up the A/C, and shut the door.

2 1/2 years later, a relative called the police, inquiring about Mrs. Pope. When the police searched the house, they found her mummified body still in the chair, still wearing her white nightgown, the tv still on.

Yep. It's a proud moment for the Queen City.

And on the First Day....

Any Christian will tell you that the first chapter of the Bible, Genesis, describes the creation of the heavens and the earth, the land and the seas, night and day, animals and people. Even my 5 year old knows about Genesis. God created Eve from one of Adam's ribs, taken while he was sleeping. They had everything they needed to survive. But the "Devil Snake", as Kevin calls him, persuaded Eve to eat an apple from the Tree of Knowledge, so that she could be like God. Eve did so, and Adam followed her lead. Yadda yadda yadda... you all know the story, right?

Then why is it so frikkin' hard to believe!!!!

Because when we learn about science in school, Creationism isn't taught. Our kids hear about the Big Bang Theory, and evolution, and the missing link. They hear about dinosaurs, and the theories behind their extinction. They learn about cultures from different countries. They learn so much- but they never learn about Creationism.

Science is THEORY. Wild-ass guesses by some incredibly brilliant people who are able to PROVE those theories become factual knowledge. However, no one has ever been able to prove, without a doubt, how the earth was created. Lots of people have tried, but no one has been totally successful. So the question becomes... if it's only a theory, why can't it be taught in the schools?

The US Supreme Court has been dragged into this battle many times over the years. In 1968, the Supreme Court ruled that there shouldn't be laws PREVENTING teaching creationism in the public schools in Arkansas. In 1982, they basically reversed that decision (again, involving the state of Arkansas), by saying that the state's balanced treatment of scientific creation theories did not apply to Creationism... because Creationism wasn't based upon science. SCOTUS reiterated this position in 1987: the state of Louisiana lost a court battle requiring Creationism (also known as Intelligent Design) to be taught, as a THEORY, along with other theories about the creation of our world, because the act endorsed religion and advanced religious beliefs on children.

This past Sunday we had a special speaker at our church from Answers in Genesis. Answers in Genesis is out to prove the Bible is a factual, AND scientific, document. Unbeknownst to me, they've been building a multi-million dollar museum about 30 minutes from my house. How did this escape my radar?? The Creation Museum is set to open next year. It's an amazing facility. They teach evolution and human history, according to the Bible, and back it up scientifically.

I can't do it justice. I'm just not that knowledgeable. But I can tell you this: they have a staff of biologists, geologists and physicists doing research to prove the validity of the Bible on a scientific basis. These geologists and physicists work in conjunction with theologists to establish the Bible as a scientific reference.

Check it out yourself, and you'll be as amazed as I was by the amount of physical science that backs up biblical teachings.

Again and again, our states and teachers are being prevented from presenting Intelligent Design as a valid creation theory. Perhaps with the help of scientists associated with the Creation Museum, SCOTUS will recognize "creation science" as a REAL science, and finally allow Intelligent Design to be taught in our schools.

Monday, January 09, 2006

So busy!

Quarter end.
Year end.
(sorry- just had to throw that in there for effect)

I have a lot to say, and just haven't had the time to put it in words.
Stay tuned for a Creationism rant later this week, plus some other "fiddly bits" (as John likes to say) as I come up with them.

I promise.

Friday, January 06, 2006

It was a "DUH" moment

I bought myself this funny little desk calendar this year- "The DUH! Awards". Every day I get some little tidbit of knowledge about somebody's DUHness. Fortunately, I haven't made the calendar yet. But this guy did:

In the 1970's, Dr. Landrum Shettles was working on some earth-shattering research at Columbia University: in-vitro fertilization. This concept is widely used today, and many couples have experienced parenthood as a result. However, the head of the research department at Columbia did not share Dr. Shettles' excitement over the new technology. When he found out that Dr. Shettles was trying to create the first test tube baby, he entered the lab and opened the sealed containers so that the fertilized eggs could not be implanted.

Dr. Shettles continued his research anyway, as did many other pioneering doctors across the country. The first, Louise Joy Brown, was born on July 25, 1978. Although Dr. Shettles did much of the early research, the doctors who "created" Louise get all the credit for in-vitro fertilization. If the head of research at Columbia hadn't got on his moral high horse and destroyed Dr. Shettles work, perhaps the first test-tube baby would have been born earlier, and attributed to Dr. Shettles instead of Drs. Patrick Steptoe and Robert Edwards. Since that first baby, millions of "test tube babies" have been born- including the twins across the street from me.

Thursday, January 05, 2006


A local family struggled over their decision to let their 17 year old daughter, Sarah, graduate from high school early and join the Marine Reserves. The decision is never easy, but for the Dyer's, one very important factor weighed heavily on their minds.

Sarah's older brother, Lance Corporal Christopher J. Dyer, was killed in Iraq in August by a roadside bomb, along with four other Marines.

He is buried at Arlington. During his memorial service, his mother spoke about her son's decision to join the Marines, and about the war. She urged mourners to "honor me in this way" and not let their anger and sadness turn them against the war in Iraq or the US military. (ahem. Mrs. Sheehan- take note.)

Sarah and Christopher were very close growing up, and often played "army" in the backyard. Her high school principal calls her "focused" and says she has a lot of "internal drive." US Representative Steve Chabot calls her "impressive" and "extraordinary"- which is why he nominated her for an appointment at West Point.

She leaves for Parris Island on January 22. One day later she will learn whether or not she's been awarded a Navy ROTC scholarship. She's already been awarded an Army ROTC scholarship, but her choice is the Marine Corps. "The few. The proud. I want to be a part of that and I want to be a part of the Marines", she says.

I am in awe of this young woman. She has an Army ROTC scholarship, may get an appointment to West Point, but is hoping to get a Navy ROTC scholarship... so she can go to VMI. HOLY COW.

YOU GO GIRL! (and your parents frikkin' rock)

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Missing: Fruit of the Looms

I'm a sucker for the homecoming ceremonies for our guys and gals coming home from war. I cry, and sometimes, I laugh. Some Soldier's Mom had me doing both when reading about the return of some 3ID guys this week.


Well, hell.

You'd think that Fate would let these men come home without one last memorial service, but that was not to be.

Thunder6 has the story.

Whenever guys are short, I always give them the "you STILL have to be careful out there" speech. They say "Yeah.. I know.".. and go on. They still have a job to do, and until they're home on US soil, they're still at war, damn it all.

Currie's already written his "farewell" post, so I doubt he'll write about Cpl. Corniel. Perhaps this is one of those events that Maj. K eluded to in his most recent post.

The Nighstalkers will be home soon, less quite a few warriors. Please stop by these three blogs and thank them for their service and sacrifice.

Monday, January 02, 2006

A dream is a wish

A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you're fast asleep
In dreams you will lose your heartache
Whatever you wish for you keep

Have faith in your dreams
And someday, your rainbow will come shining through
No matter how your heart is grieving
If you just keep believing
The dream that you wish will come true

A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you're feeling small.
Alone in the night you whisper
Think no one can hear at all.
You wake with morning sunlight to find fortune that smile on you.

Don't let your heart be filled with sorrow
For almost in tomorrow the dream you wish will come true.

The dream is a wish your heart makes
The dream is a wish your heart makes
You wake with the morning sunlight to find fortune that smile on you.
Don't let your heart be filled with sorrow
For almost in tomorrow the dream you wish will come true.
No matter how your heart is grieving
If you just keep believing
The dream that you wish will come true

If dreams can come true, and dreams are wishes, here's what I wish for all of you:
I hope you always have your health, so that you can be there to watch your children and grandchildren grow old. My Mom has Scleroderma, and every day is a gift. Even though her condition is under control, her arthritis gives her pain every day. EVERY day.

It will differ for each of you, for what makes one person happy may not make another person happy. I wish it was easier. I wish it was easier to attain happiness and recognize that each of us is in control of our own happiness. No one can *make* us happy. It's something you have to do for yourself. Again, however, I wish it was easier.

Love is always on the top of the list of things everyone wants... but not everyone attains true, unconditional love. Sometimes we fall in love, and then... as I did, 10 years down the line we find ourselves no longer in love and causing nothing but pain and heartache. I'm sorry, Bryan. My wish for all of you is that you find the love of your life, and you work at making sure that person is the right one to spend the rest of your life with.

Not the "end-the-war-now" kind of peace- you should all know me better than that by now. I mean the kind of peace and harmony in your life that makes things run smoothly, with only a few ripples here and there. Look at a sleeping newborn baby: no worry lines on their foreheads, complete trust in those around them, and sweet dreams flowing through their little heads. That kind of peace. The kind of peace that "the perfect moment" brings. If you've experienced it, you know what I'm talking about. If you haven't... well, I hope you do soon. There's no feeling like it.

I've learned a lot about trust over the past couple of years- good and bad. When I go to a restaurant, my server always starts out with a 20% tip- and works her way DOWN from there. Getting back up to 20% takes a LOT of work. Trust works the same way. It's something that I freely give at first- you have to work to lose it. Earning it back is a bitch. I hope you all have people in your lives you can trust completely.