Saturday, December 31, 2005

What a Way to start 2006!!

Looks like another Soldier has made it home safe. You must go visit Keep My Soldier Safe, and see for yourself. Another family, will be able to sleep a little better. Thank you Michael!!

Do not forget to stop by, Waynes World, he is home, and folks there is a wedding in the works!!

Run over and tell the guys Thank You, and let the Mommas know they did good.

Happy New Year, and Happy Birthday.

17 years ago tonight, Dear Husband and I went on our first "real date". Which means, he picked me up at my parents home while I was on "winter break" from college. He had driven the entire way from El Paso, Texas, where he was serving with the 3rd ACR. We went to National Lampoons Christmas Vacation, and then I think we went to an obscure little bar in my hometown, with an 80 year old female batender that's voice sounded like Marge Simpson's sister, she mixed drinks for cowboys, and knew nothing of "drinking age". Dear Husband had a scotch and water, neat. I think I had gin and tonic. We kissed in the car on the drive home.

4 years ago tonight I was in a hospital room, having a terrible time delivering Dash. Dear Husband was on R&R, and I had convinced my midwife to induce me, so Dear Husband could see his first born. The labor lasted 12 hours, and it was by far one of the most painful and terrifying moments in my life. However, as soon as I held him, all was right.

So Happy New Year to each of you, and Happy Birthday my Big Boy Dash. I will pop a bottle of champagne tonight, and toast the New Year and say a prayer for everyone I know, may my voice be carried through the Heavens....

Recipe for correcting ones chi

1 childless couple
1 couple with a 2 year old and soon to be 4 year old
3 glasses of white merlot for me
1 16oz glass of ice water for Pink Ninja
1 fantastic Indian meal

Take Pink Ninja, put her on her Moms lap, give her a spoon to stir ice water. Let 16oz of ice water pour directly onto a grouchy Moms lap.

Let Mom slam 3 glasses of white merlot

Chi is repaired, and humility--- as always is in check.

Next time you are a bit grouchy and pissy, try a little ice, on "your business"....seemed to do the trick.

Friday, December 30, 2005

You Lookin' At Me?

Ughhhh my chi is off, out, and done.

Today has been a long day for me, jumbled, unorganized, thoughts fleeting, and I am left feeling angry one minute, and like I might cry the next like some sort of pyscho.

I will blame my lack of a physical outlet. Due to my right knee (still injured)...I have been unable to participate in much of any sort of physical activity besides activities of daily living. Both my general Practicioner and the Orthopedist, recommended I lay off of it until I can get in. In fact they recommended an ace bandage about 12 hours out of the day, the leg elevated, and just staying off it as much as possible. I do have an appointment on January 3rd, with the Orthopedist. So till then I am trying to baby the damn knee as much as I can. However, it seems to get reinjured with the slightest of "quick moves". No I am not running a race, but with "the toddlers", it seems I pivot more than a prima ballerina.

My body has served me fairly well. I am rarely sick, never hospitalized with the exception of birth in which with Pink Ninja I showed up at 9 1/2 cm, and left a few hours later. I am not a good patient. I do not like being "pastured".

The injury means "no yoga". Which has killed me. It has killed me. It has killed me. The physicality of it, the progress I was making. Not only physically, but the meditative state I was able to fall into within 2 minutes after class, with my breathing. All gone. My tummy that was resembling my younger tummy, back to Mom tummy....The holidays, and my lack of self control have not helped.

The "zone" I create during yoga, the time out of the house, the fact that it is the nicest thing I do for myself. Ugh....Gone. I sit here and I recall how we end each yoga class before meditation time, and I can hear my instructor saying this...

"I want you to go inside yourself and I want you to picture yourself succeeding in that one thing you most want to succeed in everyday". When she asks us this, I ALWAYS picture myself smiling as I interact with my children. Because it is the one thing I NEED to succeed at. If I fail them, all else I do will matter little.

So I sit here today, grouchy, not smiling and pissy. I sit here pondering the lesson in this. There is one I know. There is always a gift underneath the ugliest of wrapping paper. The gift is sometimes even uglier than the paper.

However I guess I should unwrap the damn thing, and take a look. Sometimes utility is not pretty.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

If I Were Emma Peel......

I would be starring in my own television series, and I would not be washing puke covered toddler clothing.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Please Please Tell Me Now

Dash woke this morning with complaints of a "tummy ache"....I guess he woke with Dear Husband early, climbed onto his lap, and just snuggled. My kids snuggle a lot ONLY when they are sick, it is THE ONLY time they like to be wrapped in a blanket and rocked and held. Otherwise they are tearing something up, or raising some sort of cane. So Dear Husband guessed the complaints were legitimate.

I woke to hear the same complaints, and cooked a normal breakfast of toasted wheat bread with honey and eggs....Dash did not touch his, or his beverage. Pink Ninja ate both breakfasts!!

So even though today was "errand day", I opted to stay home, and rock Dash. I really will take what I can get from him. I thought maybe if I could hold him all day, it might make up for all of those times I want to squeeze him and cannot, because most of the time, he is too busy for Mom. So I decided to have jammie day. Jammie day happens about once a week here. Depends on the weather, schedule and mood. I also follow the rule that says, if you have a sick kid, NEVER change clothes needlessly. If you put clean clothes on a kid with a "tummy ache", you are asking for it to be vomited on, same goes for clean bedding.

So I make Dash a nest on the couch, wrap him in a warm blanket, with water, and soda cracker, and a Thomas book. I ask him, if he wants to go to the Dr., and Pink Ninja is off like a flash collecting her Fisher Price Dr. bag, complete with stethoscope, otoscope, thermometer, and syringe. She gives him a shot, and pokes at him with the otoscope. She kisses him and says. "You be ok Dash." It was, as sweet as it sounds.

As the day progressed, the children got antsy, Dash not so snuggly. Jumping and prancing around looking very "unsick". He also request a half a banana, and a half a pear. He looked fine, so I went ahead and cut the fruit up, and watched him eat it all and continue with his jumping.

I decide to put clothes on everyone, and head out. We have to go to the bank, return library books, take dry cleaning in, and go to the store. We get ready, there are no complaints. So I load them in the "truwk".

As soon as we hit the interstate Dash starts whining...Really whining. Whining so incessantly that I cannot understand a word out of his mouth. So in my best "not irritated with your whining voice" I say "hey buddy, you need to let me know what is wrong, I cannot understand you babe". "Can you tell me what is wrong". He just continues with the inaudible, garbled fussing.

When I pull into the bank I hear him vomiting, and vomiting, and coughing. Poor little guy, he is so sick all of a sudden he doesn't even care he is covered in puke. This would normally make Dash flip out. He didn't care.

So more lessons learned. Never take sick kids out, do not pass go, do not get sick children out of jammies , and never harass a sick kid about expressing themselves more clearly, you may not be prepared for the message.

You better get over there....

Waynes Mom has GOOD NEWS!! Wayne is home from Iraq, and in time for the Holiday. Go over there, and let them know we are proud of him!!

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Pink Ninja Training Camp, Lesson #359

The following is a transcription of incident reported to "Old and Slow Mom" by "The Pink Ninja".

So I was minding my own business on Christmas Eve Day. Watching the slow and old Mom put together a relish tray,and humming. Boring, I tell you these people are boring! Normally when The old, slow Mom is busy, I like to practice fighting techniques on Dash, jump on furniture, steal Dash's trains. Sometimes I will practice my diversionary tactics cry and look pathetic so Mom will pick me up. I will add here, this is more effective on Dear Old Dad than Old Mom. She is catching on.

I decided I need the following items, money, Christmas gifts(peace offerings), and weapons. So I try and think of something in the house that will afford me my list. The old woman keeps her purse in her reach all of the time, no can do. So I start thinking about what in the house would be "valuable" as a weapon, and would work in a bartering situation. I decide silverware, is surely my ticket. Even better forks. I just need to sneak in the kitchen, open the drawer and when no one is looking I will quietly remove all silverware, into my most oversized purse. With said silverware I can defend myself by swinging said purse, or poking someone with a fork. I can go down the road to the pawn shop and possibly trade it for gifts, or bigger and better weapons.

Well needless to say, The Old and Slow Mom busted me, with my handbag full of silverware. For God's sake she even took pictures of it as evidence. I hope The Pink Ninja Training Camp Master does not see the photo, my careless act is surely punishable, and could get me thrown out of camp. Pray for me.

*The Old and Slow Mom, also informed me that the silverware, is not silver at all, tis "flatware". Damn, we are poor too. This is of great shock to me.

Now, back to our regular scheduled programming..

The Holidays seem to go off without a hitch. The beauty of only having to entertain "my house". I did not have to go to the extra work of entertaining others..... It was lovely I promise you.

Christmas Eve possibly my favorite moment. I watched Dear Husband and the toddlers, lay a plate of cookies out, carrots for the reindeer, syrup for the elves, and a glass of milk for Santa. Dearest Husband asked the children to pay extra attention to the plate, and told them they must check it in the morning. Getting them to bed, was no trouble at all this night. They dashed to bed, both of them.

On Christmas morning, Dear Husband and I woke, to hear the toddlers waking up from the long sleep, and we hurried to plug in tree, and make sure all was well. My Dearest collected them from they're beds and let them scamper into the livingroom. The toddlers came into the livingroom to find tree lit, stockings full, and presents under the tree. They both ran to the fireplace and checked "the snacks"...To find 2 cookies half eaten, carrots almost eaten to the ends with big deer bites taken out of them, milk gone, and a note from the man in red. The note was a thank you for the snacks, and a reminder to listen to Mommy and Daddy "all year long".. The children were thrilled and jumped up and down for minutes, and then tackled the stockings, it took most of the day to open gifts. Every toy that was opened had to be inspected, opened, played with, and introduced to the other toys before a new package was opened.

It was sweet and lovely. All were happy, and Dear Husband made me coffee, we had cookies and chocolate truffles for the early morning breakfast.

If I Were Emma Peel......

I would look divine in my little black dress.

I would have had the self discipline to say NO to the extra piece of prime rib, and pie, the extra truffles, oh and the extra sour cream.


Saturday, December 24, 2005

Happy Holidays

Woke this morning, and heard the voices of my "early risers" a LATE 7:19a.m. A great Christmas gift for me and Dear Husband. Sleep!! When I finally heard the monkeys, I collected them, and tossed them into "our bed", with Dear Husband. They snuggled, we talked about how it was Christmas Eve Day and how Santa was coming tonight to deliver gifts. We asked Dash how many gifts he thought he would get. He guessed "3". I think Dash will be pleasently suprised. Pink Ninja has been like a baby Chimpanzee on her Daddy today, clinging to him like she can remember him being gone last year.

Dear Husband does not ask for much, but he did request I make chocolate crinkles and cocoons (or Russian teacakes) today. So I will be baking, and cooking. The Nutcracker has been playing this morning, so lovely to listen to. Everyone is in the house. The sun is out. It is a beautiful Christmas Eve Day.

Friday, December 23, 2005

Breakfast of Champions

I passed on breakfast only to find peanut brittle left on the porch by neighbors. So have decided I can have peanut brittle for "brunch". It was my Mothers favorite holiday candy. With each sweet piece I break off into my mouth this a.m. I can hear her laughing and making jokes that we will eat it all. I do so miss her this time of year. I guess I will. I miss waking to her warm kitchen filled with yummy food and sweet smells of baking and cooking. A large pitcher of mimosas, and hot coffee. My Mother knowing full well I am not a morning person, and letting me slowly sip coffee while sitting at the bar watching her smile, and prance through her kitchen. Humming carols. When she sees I am awake enough to speak, she would start going over the list of things we need to get done, presents that need to be wrapped, what recipe she has magically found this morning, something we just NEED to try. I was my Moms Christmas helper always. So, this year as I sit here at my kitchen table. I think of her and smile. She would be proud that my menu is made, and presents are bought, that I know her recipes from simply watching her for 29 years. I do not have most of them on paper. She would roll her eyes that it still takes me so long to "wake up". The almond shape of my eyes widening slightly, but only after the third or fourth cup of coffee. I remember on these Christmas mornings, I would eat cookies and peanut brittle with her, and she would say things like, "enjoy the fact that you can eat all of these sweets now and not have it show, because some day it will catch up with you".

Guess what Mom, you were right, it did. However this peanut brittle tasted so good this morning, and I thought of you with every bite....It was worth it this morning.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Favorite Christmas Movie Meme

YEAH...Something fun to think about.

A Meme from Lee-Anne .

My Five Favorite Holiday Movies.

I don't know if I can name just 5.....

1) National Lampoons Christmas Vacation. Oddly enough it was Dear Husband and my first "date movie". I can recall he was wearing a black leather jacket, a black skull cap, with green skulls on it. I remember him saying at one point. "Hey you didn't hate my hat, most people would have asked me to take it off". I do not remember what I was wearing. I wonder if he does? I will have to ask. Of course I loved the movie and laughed loudly through the entire movie, I cackled and snorted, and he wasn't bothered by it.

Clark: "Where do you think you're going? Nobody's leaving. Nobody's walking out on this fun old fashioned family Christmas. No, no. We're all in this together. This is a full-blown, four-alarm holiday emergency here. We're going to press on, and we're going to have the hap-hap-happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny Fucking Kaye. And when Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he's going to find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nut house."

2) Elf. Starring one of the funniest men EVER...need I say more really. With some of the best lines EVER...

Buddy: Sounds like somebody needs to sing a Christmas Carol.
Jovie: No way.
Buddy: The best way to spread Christmas Cheer, is singing loud for all to hear.
Jovie: Thanks, but I don't sing.
Buddy: Oh, well, it's just like talking, except longer and louder, and you move your voice up and down.
Jovie: I *can* sing, I just choose *not* to sing. Especially in front of other people.
Buddy: If you can sing alone, you sing in front of other people. There's no difference.
Jovie: Actually, there's a BIG difference.
Buddy: No there's not. Wait...
[Starts singing loud and off-key]
Buddy: I'm singing/I'm in a store/and I'm siiiiiingiiiiing!/I'm in a store/and I'm siiiiiingiiiiing!
Gimbel's Manager: HEY! There's no singin' in the North Pole!
Buddy: Yes there is!
Gimbel's Manager: No there's not!
Buddy: We sing all the time!
Gimbel's Manager: No you don't!
Buddy: Especially when we build toys!
[Back to Jovie]
Buddy: See?

SO very funny...

3) Auntie Mame. Possibly one of my FAVORITE movies year round anyway. Also some very MEMORABLE lines, and the costuming is some of the most fantastic EVER. Oh and I am sure there will be some that may argue, it is not a Christmas movie at all. There is a Christmas scene folks, that makes it a Christmas movie. Oh and for the record, when I am not imagining being Emma Peel, or Maria Callas, I pretend I am Mame.

Patrick Dennis: Is the English lady sick, Auntie Mame?
Auntie Mame: She's not English, darling... she's from Pittsburgh.
Patrick Dennis: She sounded English.
Auntie Mame: Well, when you're from Pittsburgh, you have to do something.

4) When The Grinch Stole Christmas. The Original. The rhyming, and the adorable Who's in Whoville, and the little dog, wearing those poor heavy antlers, which I am sure are meant to resemble "the burden" that some feel Christmas is. I can recall watching it almost every year.

Narrator: All the Whos down in Whoville liked Christmas a lot, but the Grinch, who lived just north of Whoville, did not. The Grinch hated Christmas - the whole Christmas season. Oh, please don't ask why, no one quite knows the reason. It could be, perhaps, that his shoes were too tight. Or maybe his head wasn't screwed on just right. But I think that the best reason of all may have been that his heart was two sizes too small.

5) A Christmas Story. Another one I could watch year round. A great story, hilariously funny. I think the Father being my favorite charactor. Although I always think the Mom may be slightly boozed up, which is not a bad idea during the holiday.

Narrator: Some men are Baptists, others Catholics, my father was an Oldsmobile man.

6) Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer. Simply adorable, catchy songs, sung by Burl Ives, Mrs. Santa saying "eat eat"... in the end, the Misfits win out. Not a bad ending at all.


We're a couple of misfits
We're a couple of misfits
What's the matter with misfits
That's where we fit in!

We're not daffy and dilly
Don't go 'round willy nilly
Seems to us kinda silly
That we don't fit in.

We may be different from the rest
Who decides the test
Of what is really best?

We're a couple of misfits
We're a couple of misfits
What's the matter with misfits
That's where we fit in!

(this part sung by Rudolph)

Why am I such a misfit?
I am not just a nit wit!
I'm an adorable reindeer
Why don't I fit in?

(this part sung by Hermey)

Why am I such a misfit?
I am not just a nit wit!
They can't fire me.

We may be different from the rest
Who decides the test
Of what is really best?

We're a couple of misfits
We're a couple of misfits
What's the matter with misfits
That's where we fit in!

Quit your pissing and moaning already lady OR another lesson learned the HARD way....

It is very funny, how my life and head work...I also have not learned anything by being stubborn, and require lessons the hard way.

So as far as I can tell my knee hurt for a week, I am assuming it was a sort of warning to lay off a bit. I didn't listen, so it got to the point of "real pain"...Sit down, lesson learned the hard way, and on the longer bumpier road.

I will say this though, I do not like to sit, I like to "do". I will also add this. This is "our real first Christmas together"...I really wanted to make it as perfect as I could.

Well after skimming the blogroll this morning I decided it is a perfect Christmas, so stop it right now. Dear Husband is home, and made it home in one piece. We are blessed. Dear Husband does not want a perfect Christmas, he wants Christmas, with us. He does not need the curtains washed, and floors sanitized, with a worn out gimpy and grouchy wife. He wants to come home and find the three of us smiling in a pile of toys and blankets in the livingroom.

This week has been set aside to "thank those who have served, or are serving". I beg you, to thank at least three....There are a lot of people to be remembered this week, there are those that will not be coming home, and those families that will experience the most painful Christmas ever.

I have been reading "Waynes Mom" for a while now...And guess what folks. Wayne just might be home in time for the holiday. The the thought of it truly almost brings tears to my eyes. When the Moms, and wives start putting the signs up, it won't be long. It won't be long at all. Especially after all of the sleepless nights, and the waiting by the phone, the hours spent watching all of the bad news, the hours spent scouring the internet for a word of good news. Well Waynes Mom....When you hear he is on the ground and safe, go ahead and cry and pray, and thank God all you want. When you touch him, and get to hug him, remember it is real. It is real for the first time in months....So I will be thinking of you, and yours on this holiday. I hope it is a great one for each of you.

Some Soldier's Mom, has her son in the U.S. for Christmas this year, however not under the best circumstances....he is home recuperating from injuries received during his deployment. Please go over and read this and remember those men and women that are deployed at this time. She always says exactly what I mean to say and cannot....

There is Dogtulosba, who continues to jump out of airplanes for a living, and to my knowledge, will be celebrating his first Christmas with his new wife....Enjoy it you two. We celebrated our first Christmas at Fort Bragg, and I remember it well.

AirForceFamily, should be all at home now, and ready to celebrate, thanks to her Dear Husbands connections they will get a couple of extra days together..Enjoy the holiday at home. I know you will.

An American In Italy will be AWAY from "home", but I believe she has company coming to keep her company. Remember, fish and houseguests smell after two days, so keep the holiday cheer in reach. You may need it.

Andi, my sweet Andi. Her husband has just been deployed, and I think of her, and her quiet Christmas. Even if she is surrounded by those she loves, it won't be the same. I know she will worry about where her Husband is, and if he is safe....If he got a decent meal for his Christmas.

Katy will have her Dearest at home, and her 3 sweet and beautiful children. I am sure the five of them will have a wonderful time, and if not Katy is sure to post pictures of the entire ordeal.

Sean is home, and married to his beautiful wife, and it will be their first Christmas together...I do not think he needs any instruction on enjoying this...He already knows.

Big Al, is expected home at any moment...And it will be the first Christmas as a new couple. Praying for his return before Christmas folks......Praying as hard as I can...

Chuck is back in the U.S., and continues his healing journey in and out of Walter Reed, and I am hoping he gets to stay put at home for a while. Chuck and Karen I hope your efforts with Valour IT continue to come to fruition for you and those who will depend on the technology. I am so proud you have both turned what could have been a bumpy road, into a golden one. Continued prayers for your healing, and Karens strength as always.

To Homefront6, the redhead you do not want to make angry, I hope it is a good one, and you can spend it with family and friends, for keeping us informed I thank you and yours as well...

To Another Mom at Keep My Soldier Safe, who reminds me that for every wife, there is a Mom and a Sister and a family, that cannot sleep at night, and a Mom who writes letters almost daily. Prays by the minute, and is just trying to hold it together. I do not know how you Moms do it, and I am so proud of your Sons and Daughters, and to know you had such an important part in making them do what they are doing.

To My Life As A Military Spouse for continuing to blog, when she didn't want to any longer. Her experience as a wife of a soldier who has gone through PTSD, has been a blessing to many of us I am sure. I hope your Christmas is a beautiful one, and tell your Husband thank you for reenlisting, I know it was not an easy decision for either of you.

To Colby, over at My War, for writing his blog, and the book. Letting us read about his experiences. Please enjoy the Season. Go get the book, and read it, I think you will be pleased. I hope your folks are proud of you!

The Patriette, who is alone, and pregnant, while her Dearest is deployed. I hope your holiday season is a good one. Your pregnancy continues to go smoothly Dear, praying for you and yours. I think of you often I do, and I have been there, and understand how sad it is, to have kicking in your tummy and no hand to grab.....

To Holly, for continuing to raise money and awareness, for all of her hard work....Her artistry...

Oh Gosh and there are SO many more, but a final thank you for Soldiers Angels, for making everything one stop for the spouses, what we can do to help, who needs what, the news, for having our backs....When we are afraid, no one is listening, or watching. I can never say THANK YOU enough....You make me sleep better at night.

Anyway after all of the reading and thinking, of what could have been, and how blessed I am....I will take a bum knee any day I swear it....

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

They shoot horses don't they?

Well I haven't blogged about this, but DH should be back soon. He has been in New Orleans with The National Guard.

So I have been alone here at Casa De Dust, alone for almost 2 weeks, with the collective known as "The toddlers". How I did this for 18 months is beyond me-really. So I have been here doing all things Christmas, shopping, wrapping, shipping, delivering wine to neighbors, ordering meat from the butcher, dropping off dry cleaning. You know the drill. I have probably unloaded and loaded the toddlers about 150 times from the truck during this time...My arms should look very kick ass...And I should be able to lift the entire truck. Arm wrestling anyone?

However, I have run into a problem. I never have had a knee problem EVER...For the last week or so, I have been hobbling around like some "old woman". Living on alleve, and other anti-inflammatories. Woke this a.m. unable to bear any weight on the damn thing.

Injured? Probably..How, I have no idea. So I have all sorts of odds and ends to do finish up at Casa De Dust, and am almost crying every time I bear weight on right leg. Crap. I am walking around this place with right knee bent and on tip toes of right foot. Today I am off the pharmacy down the road to buy an ace wrap and a gross of Ibuprofen...Crap. Not exactly what I need to be doing today.

I am hoping my Dear Husband does not come home, and put me out to pasture. A wife with a bum leg is not much good to an Army guy. I need to be able to carry my own weight, and some of his. Don't forget all of the baby dolls, and Thomas track. Maybe if I decorate the bandage with bows, a garter, stockings, something...he won't notice...

I hope I don't end up in some glue factory for broken wives...

The King of Romance is getting Married....

I call my Father at least once a day, and have since the death of my Mother, the following is a conversation that took place Thursday night.

Dad: "Hello."

Me: "Hey Dad."

Dad: "How are those kids?"

Me: "Wild, can't you hear them?

Dad: "Yep, they sound good. What are they doing?"

Me: "Pulling each other around with a blanket, getting wound up, I need to turn out the lights and get the books out."

Dad: "Well I bought "Girlfriend" her ring today."

Me: (smiling) "Oh Really?" "Have you asked her yet?"

Dad: "Well, when the jewelry store people were getting ready to put the ring on her, I said, I paid for it, I will put it on her finger, and then I kissed her."

Me: "Congratulations, I could not have hand picked anyone better for you."

There ya have it, my Dad the King of getting married. I am happy for him, the two of them have went from sorrow filled widows, to giggling lovers, and friends.

--I am happy for the both of them, I will say this, for one second, the part of my heart that will always be five years old, hurt a little and I missed my Mom a bit. However, I think that is alright. I gave the little thing a hug, and said it would be ok. The 35 year old me, is thrilled and I really like this lady. She is before all other things "thoughtful". A quality I adore, and have a difficult time attaining that...Thoughtful.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Position of the Week #10

It is Christmas week, and so in the spirit of Christmas I am going to try and be calm, and enjoy Christmas. I am going to enjoy my family, and what we have, and who we are.

I found this....and loved it.

Letter to a Friend
I salute you. I am your friend and my love for you goes deep. There is nothing I can give you which you have not got; but there is much, very much, that while I cannot give it, you can take.

No Heaven can come to us unless our hearts find rest in today. Take Heaven! No peace lies in the future which is not hidden in this present little instance. Take Peace! The gloom of the world is but a shadow. Behind it, yet with in our reach, is Joy. There is radiance and glory in the darkness ... could we but see and to see we have only to look. I beseech you to look.

Life is so generous a giver, but we, judging it's gifts by it's covering, cast them away as ugly or heavy or hard. Remove the covering and you will find beneath it a living splendor, woven of love, by wisdom, with power.

Welcome it, grasp it, and you touch the Angel's hand that brings it to you. Everything we call a trail of a sorrow is there; the gift is there, and the wonder of an overshadowing presence. Our joys too; be not content with them as joys. They too conceal diviner gifts.

Life is so full of meaning and purpose, so full of beauty ... beneath it's covering ... that you will find earth that cloaks heaven. Courage then to claim it, that is all! But courage you have, and the knowledge that we are pilgrims together, wending through unknown country, home.

And so at this Christmas time, I greet you. Not quite as the world sends greetings, but with profound esteem and with the prayer that for you, now and forever, the day breaks, and the shadows flee away.

- Fra Giovanni written in 1513 A.D

Monday Morning Cardio Haiku

Toddlers slept like rocks.

Woke to hear the garbage trucks.

Ran to curb with cans.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

If I Were Emma Peel......

I would be somewhere warm enough for this dress, and I would not be spending the day folding laundry and vacuuming.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Hot bath and Coldplay

So it is Saturday Night and the dishes are done, the kids, are down for the night, garbage out, floor swept, laundry going(it is always going)....Some shopping has been done. One last thing on the list...A hot bath.

Then it will time for Coldplay on PBS. Yeah, that is my big plan for tonight...And if I get wild I may pop me popcorn. On a real CRAZY Saturday night.....I will even put butter on it...Lots of butter...And tabasco....yep...A perfect Saturday night.

Extreme ArmyWifeToddlerMom night, may even include a libation or 2.

If you would have told me this 15 years ago, I would have had you committed.

Musical Intentions...

Still wrapping and shopping on-line. Some things simply cannot be found when you live in "the sticks"....Or when you are "late". I will accept a certain amount of responsibility.

So I put in G.F. Handel, for wrapping and humming, Der Messias,I even tried A. Brukner Virga Jessa... To set my mood.

However, I had to turn it off and put in E.L.O.....and listened to "Last Train To London", about 4 times....and am leaving E.L.O. in for the rest of the day...

Now I want a bigger driveway, some big headphones, and a pair of roller-skates, or maybe time travel back to studio 54, where I could dance all night...I think the wrapping can wait...or I can just leave the pesky wrapping to those nice online folks.

I wonder if Disco is considered Christmas music, it did put me in a great Christmas mood.

Friday, December 16, 2005

I will do it myself, thank you very much....

Since becoming a parent I have learned that what I thought was an opportunity to "teach", is not. Parenting is not all about the teaching I am afraid. It is about learning too.

The lessons have been many.

There is the change the diaper of a baby boy lesson, which is "cover and change VERY fast "....And yeah to those of you sans children...Yes it does happen. Oh and it happens more than once....For God's sake.

There is also the "if anyone is going to puke", it will be in your bed at 3:00am on your 1200 Thread Count seets. I will add here, puke does not happen just once either....

Oh and there is the "hey I don't look half bad today" lesson. Which includes Mom putting on her best suit to go out to eat, only to pick an infant up before a pass to the baby sitter for one final kiss. Said baby have some sort of diaper explosion disaster all over Moms dry clean only suit.

Oh and what about this gem, the standing in the checkout lane at the grocery, feeling happy and proud your kids are the only children not screaming about M&M's and candy . Simply to have your 2 1/2 year old say in his LOUDEST voice "Mommy your boobies look like mountains, while grabbing one"..

These are all humiliating, and seem to keep my faltering ego in check, something I did not realize needed checking. However I won't disagree with Universal law.

The hardest lesson to learn?

Well it seems to me, those qualities that I think are so endearing about myself aren't as endearing as I would like to think.

For those of you who know me, it may not surprise you to know I like to do things by myself. If I break something I like to fix it, I do not like owing people, I do not like things to be left UNDONE..."I will do it myself, thank you very much."

The Pink Ninja, is 2 now. And, she wants to do ALL things by herself. This is really a surprise to me, because Dash prefers that me-- Mom take care of all of his "menial tasks". These include everything that is not "fun". However, Pink Ninja has such a great time "doing things by herself", and take such pride and absolute joy in performing ANY task by herself. That said, if you try and assist her she goes to pieces. If she is putting on her shoes, and runs into trouble and becomes frustrated , I will try and help, and she will throw herself on the floor. If I am preparing dinner plates at the table, she will want to portion her food out. However she is 2, not such a great idea....So I try and help her, help herself. She will literally scream at me "I do it, I do it myself MOMMY"....And will break down crying. It never seems to work out. One of us becomes frustrated with one another. She ends up crying, walking around with pant legs on her arms, and I follow her saying..."Honey I can help, let Mommy help you." "Those are pants, here is your shirt." And I watch her wrestle these pants, and she will wrestle them all day trying to make pants into a shirt.

I want her to know, that sometimes, it isn't worth it...Making pants into a shirt...Some things just cannot be done, no matter how hard you try.

So now I have to teach her, while I teach myself, that it is ok to ask for help, even with the small stuff.

Well Pink Ninja for a two year old, you are pretty smart. I owe you one kid.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

A funny thing happenned on the way to the.....

Donna, killed me with this tale...

Christmas Bells are Ringing

So I must take the day off, and get some more wrapping, and shipping done. However I found a few great blogs for you to visit, and pick up some music for the holiday...


Reverend Frost

Yule Shoot Your Eye Out

Red Rider BB Gun

and lastly PCL LinkDump

Now I know why they call it "scotch tape"....I need a drink.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Road Show McFight Club......

So That One Guy, makes the long drive to see Bloodspite so they can go "hunting". I found out through some of my very Emma Peel detective work that they are in my neck of the woods, and I threaten to kill them both unless they stop and say hi.

Well the "hunting trip" gets canceled, and they try to play it off with all sorts of excuses. Mr. Drunken Wisdom, trying to fool a sober Mom....Not easy to do. Contrary to my writing and crappy spelling, I am actually not the dullest tool in the shed. I have seen That One Guy, play this card before. Remember "the bullshit bloody nose from the high blood pressure story", fight club. Oh and I know, I know there is no fight club. I know, we know....And that is why it is really ok for me to be typing this.

They both gave complete bullshit versions of the meet. Imagine that.

The guys did pull into the McDonalds parking lot recklessly, bits of gravel flying off of the tires. Oh and they were all camouflaged up, that part is true. Although I am sure it has something to do with concealing identity as they had terrorized the residents of the Ozarks on the trip down. Fight Club you know. On top of the car there was an array of things tied to the roof. A couple of goats, a couch, a freezer, and a machete. I am assuming these were items won from previous fight clubs.

We did have a nice visit, in between them making trips to the parking lot to kick complete strangers asses. Bloodspite claims he is a bit shy...He is shy like me. So don't let him fool you. Very nice to see That One Guy again, he reminds me of the big brother I wished I had.....And he could beat mean people up for me. I am currently working on my list.

They did not fool my children either. Pink Ninja, was showing all of her Ninja skills, in hopes of being recruited as the youngest member of fight club.

Let me clear some things up...I was not wearing any leather, contrary to what That One Guy said....I was wearing my best June Cleaver dress, pearls, heels and apron after a long morning of baking cookies.

I did have the children with me, they were clean, apple cheeked, and listened to everything I said.

Hot and Sweaty

I woke this morning at 5:30, so hot and sweaty. Which would normally make for a great story. However this story is not a good one...

Upon trying to kick one of the three extra blankets I put on the beds last night (I went to bed freezing). I thought "ouch, it hurts to kick". So I go to sit up in bed, and think "ouch it hurts to sit".

My body tried to warn me yesterday, it did. I hurt yesterday, I limped around here for the afternoon thinking I hurt my knee doing yoga.....(I have never been injured doing yoga...But thought maybe). I took naproxen (Alleve) all day, thinking I just needed an anti-inflammatory.

So I pulled my hurting self out of the bed, and ouched down the hallway, met Dash at his door. Who was sneezing, and drippy. His little voice, sounding echoed in his head. He says, "Mom, I think I am sick, like Pink Ninja was".....

"Yeah little dude, I think you are right."

He, says "cool" and jumps down the hallway...

Yeah, "cool" I say limping behind him.

I want to call in sick today.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Casa De Dust Debate of the Week (segment #2)

Dear Husband thinks my answers to the "5 weird habits" meme are complete bullshit.

Dear Husband says he would have chosen.

1) I order all of my dressing (usually blue cheese) on the side, but I always put it all on my salad.

I contend that, the side amount is probably less than the server, or prep person would put on.

2) I sit Indian style when I dine, unless of course I am "in dress or skirt", or we are in a "very nice restaurant". Or of course, if dining over very serious matters.

I have always sat this way when I eat, sat like that in school in desks, at work....

Is it lady like "no", probably not. Am I comfortable....Yes.

The good news is, I have not heard the rest of his list. Although I am sure he is thinking on it, and I will get the other 243 soon.

Position of the Week #9

The important thing is this: to be able, at any moment, to sacrifice what we are for what we could become.
Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

This weeks positions is Ustrasana or Camel Pose, I did do this one tonight, in a 30 minute sun salutation vinyasa....Which I felt was necessary after consuming an entire dark chocolate candy bar, before bedtime.....Never a good idea.

Produces maximum compression of the spine. Improves the flexibility of the neck and spine and relieves backache. It stretches the throat, thyroid gland, and parathyroids. Like the Bow Pose, it opens a narrow rib cage to give more space to the lungs. It also firms and slims the abdomen and the waistline. This is also a great stretch for abdominal, and pelvis.

Another pose that can create a fear of falling for me. However, it is a great stretch. Looks easy, but is hard to maintain balance over time. Keep chest out and shoulders down...As always.

*Please contact your physician prior to beginning any exercise regime....ArmyWifeToddlerMom and those associated are not responsible for any injury. (Unless you want to be paid in Thomas The Tank Engine track, or legos...)

Saturday, December 10, 2005

OH! I almost forgot......You folks are it.

Consider yourself tagged with the "5 Weird habits" meme........I think I am supposed to pick 5 people. I have a terrible habit of not listening to directions.

Air Force Family
An American In Italy
Andi's World
Army of Mom
Wayne's World
Some Soldier's Mom
The Patriette
My Life As A Military Spouse
Poop Paxil and Pageantry

If I Were Emma Peel......

I would back from Monte Carlo, and enjoying cocktails with Steed. Gifts would be bought, wrapped, and shipped.

Steed looks kind of growly and in charge here.....purrrrfect

Friday, December 09, 2005

5 Weird habits of a highly neurotic being....

So I got tagged by Boudicca, and Mr. Blackfive with a meme. 5 Weird habits...I am a huge weirdo, so the list could go on for days.

1) I flush public toilets with my foot. No need to explain this. Ick. (rarely use a public toilet)

2) I am a big comfort sleeper. Dear Husband can fall asleep with his belt and boots on, I think it is an Army thing. I have to have no jewelry on, nothing. I also have to have all of the pillows exactly right, must be warm, I am also particular about the weight of comforters, must have nice sheets, perfect pillows. I will adjust pillows for minutes at a time. I will also adjust Dear Husbands pillows (because I know I can make him more comfortable). It drives him nuts....

3) When I make calls of business nature, I always announce, "This is ArmyWifeToddlerMom"....Very funny. No one knows who I am, I act like they should.

4) I say my prayers in the bath every night.

5) Instead of checking the mirror for obvious repairs like hair, or lipstick when I leave the house, I check my ass. Which is hilarious, because there is nothing I can do to fix it...I always do it though...what a weirdo.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

I'll be home for Christmas........

The last 5 Christmas's have been hard for me.

I won't go into specifics tonight, because honestly. I am too tired for it. Let me say this, the last five years are filled with death, illness, new babies, and deployments.

This year is the first year my tree is up in OUR HOME. I haven't seen any of this stuff for 5 years. Last night I was surprised to find handmade ornaments Dear Husband's Grandmother had made. I let the kids hang them on the tree. They are made from felt, there is a little toy soldier, and a small bunny. There is the brass nativity from my Mom on my mantle. Most of the ornaments cannot go on the tree until the children are older. Most are glass and some are hierlooms, others antiques. So I let the children pick out "plastic" glass looking ornaments. We used curly ribbon to hang them. So I would not make a trip to the E.R. with some nasty hook injury. We went to the park and collected pine cones. They painted them white and purple. They have left the tree alone for the most part, they are proud of their work. Dash plugs the tree in first thing in the morning. When I told him we had to take it down after Christmas, he looked sad. They love the tree. I was worried, it would be ugly without all of my usual ornaments, but they did such a fantastic job, and told me where the ornaments need to go on the top. It is a very pretty tree this year. However every time we walk by ornaments anywhere, they are begging for more.

So I hand them the safe ornaments we have gotten for gifts, and I remember my Grandma, Dear Husbands Grandma, my Mother....All gone. I have a little piece of each of them lit up in the corner. So before I turn in at night, I sit for a moment in the house lit only by the tree. I think about all of them that are not here, and I think about the babies, and how they have made this Christmas so magical for us.

The phone rings, and it is my Dad.

"I miss you, and love you and sure wish you would come home this Christmas."

He doesn't understand I am already home......

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

More Christmas folklore that could be useful

My brother had a beautiful Icelandic fiancee for 7 years. The relationship ended years ago, however I seem to recall a few of the stories Arnbjorg told me.
Just when I think I cornered the market on great Christmas threats, I recall Arnbjorg and the very fantastical folklore of Iceland.

*note of warning* I do believe this is the same country that has hired a man at the Ministry of Transportation whose job is to make sure road construction doesn't upset the elves, or displace them if you will. No elf refugee problem is needed in Iceland. They are very serious about their elves.

So I was a bit concerned that I shared with the general public my scaring my children to death with coal, and Santa Claus. Perhaps my methods seem harsh, I might have scarred my poor toddlers for life. However I recall the stories from Arnbjorg...And decide my Santa threats are wussy at best.

The Icelandic people have gone above and beyond this. So for those of you that might need a few ideas to get your children to behave...I would certainly adopt this particular culture as your own, for the month of December.

There is "Gryla", the Mother of the 13 Christmas elves, Gryla is not a nice "Mother Christmas". She likes to cook up naughty children and eat them, bones and all. "Gryla" is also married to "Leppaludi". This charming couple own a large black cat as well. This larger than human cat is called Christmas cat. He also eats children who do not get new clothes for Christmas. Not getting new clothing is proof that you were sooooo naughty, you deserve nothing except to be eaten. Old clothes are the only tip this large black cat needs. To think a new sweater, or even socks are powerful enough to save you from this horrid creature.

We move to the 13 Christmas elves, spawned by "Gryla", and "Leppaludi", the most accepted anmes are listed below. However I do remember Arnbrjorg telling me there was a specific elf that was named spoonlicker...

The 13 elves are as follows...

Stekkjarstaur - Gimpy
Giljagaur - Gully Imp
Stúfur - Itty Bitty
Þvörusleikir - Pot Scraper Licker
Pottasleikir - Pot Licker
Askasleikir - Bowl Licker
Hurðaskellir - Door Slammer
Skyrgámur - Skyr Gobbler (Skyr, an Icelandic yoghurt-type)
Bjúgnakrækir - Sausage Snatcher
Gluggagægir - Window Peeper
Gáttaþefur - Doorway Sniffer
Ketkrókur - Meat Hooker
Kertasníkir - Candle Beggar

Maybe I should start using some of these on the children. I am pretty sure they might behave better. Threatening the children with a visit from an elf that slams doors or licks pots....may not work. The doorway sniffer, almost laughable--to even children, but the old lady that will boil and eat them or a large black cat that loves the taste of children on old clothes ...just may be the ticket to a peaceful Holiday here at Casa De Dust.

Good Parenting 101....not

When all else fails, I am using Santa Claus these days. It seems to have done the trick.

"Stop kicking one another, Santa is watching"

"Stop taking his trains, Santa is watching"

"Pick up your toys, Santa will leave a lump of coal in your shoe tonight"

Last week while Dear Husband was bathing the tots, I could here an escalation of bad behavior, and squawking coming from behind the door. So I walked to the front door, rang the doorbell. It got VERY quiet. In the spirit of the season I decided to show great parenting effort, and had the following one sided loud conversation-----

"What a surprise, Santa!!"

"Yes, the children are being naughty, oh coal?"

"I will let them know thanks, have a good night Santa."

I walk into the bathroom to find Dear Husband trying not to laugh his ass off, and two wet toddlers looking horrified and shocked, that the fat man had just made a trip to the house.

To increase the effect of the encounter, I brought in two black rocks from the flower bed.

Parent of the year award, I doubt it.

I might have to answer to that one in a therapy session in say 15 years.

Monday, December 05, 2005

If I Were Emma Peel......

I would have all of my Christmas baking, decorating and shopping done. I would be headed to Monte Carlo for a pre-Christmas respite.


Well, I have been waiting for Pink Ninja to start "talking". After all, she really should have a head start in this department. I will talk for hours on end, just ask ANYONE that has met me......I will talk all day. If there is a talking marathon, I am your girl.

Over the past week, Pink Ninja has made great strides in the talking department. So now I have 2 toddlers, one on each side chattering non-stop----all day long. The bad news is, I can't get a word in. Damn.

Sunday, December 04, 2005


Yesterday was absolute gorgeousness, no joke. It is December and it was almost 70 degrees. So as soon as I got the 3 of us clothed, combed, shoed, and fed we went to the park. I honestly thought the place would be packed and was secretly dreading it. Imagine my surprise when we arrive and the only people at the park are the runners and walkers. Not one child to be seen.

So the kids play and climb and run for about an hour and a half, and then they start to build "drifts" using the recycled tire that is the padding under the equipment. They are making roads, and trenches and hills. Quietly working together. No fighting, no throwing pieces of tire in one another's hair. It is quiet.

I am watching, and I look up about 45 minutes into this and see we have company. A couple of bigger boys, 5 and 4 with Grandma. The boys run around and swing and climb and then grow bored after about 10 minutes. They watch my babies for a minute, and then they start kicking and destroying all of the "roads" and "drifts". Dash and Pink Ninja were horrified. They looked at me, and I looked at "Grandma". Hoping she would intervene with a threat or something, but she was too busy on the cell phone. So I stand wondering what to say, or do.

So I watched my children who beat the crap out of one another for a hobby, who I really think secretly hate one another pull it together. They start protecting one another, and they protect each others work. 2 year old Pink Ninja in her usual "no fear" style wagging a naughty finger at the bigger of the 2 telling him over and over that he "are naughty". She wants to swing at the kid, but is backing him into a corner. Dash is protecting their work, and doing all of the talking. "This is ours, and you are not a nice boy, Santa Claus is watching you." I watched in amazement.

I guess they don't hate another, and it is a good thing to know. Because there are days when I referee for hours on end, and I think I have made obvious mistakes. Today I had about 4 minutes of relief from it all.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Fake Plastic Trees

I grew up with a very "plastic tree" growing up. It was a terrible shade of emerald green, and hideous looking. There was a large green stick in the center with holes in it, which required that we children were assigned the glamerous duty of sorting the prickley branches out into sizes, and use them as weapons on one another when no one was watching. It horrified me, even as a child. Sorting out these plastic branches.

And thanks to the "reality of television", I would imagine the family bundled up walking through the woods finding that magic tree -breathless- upon seeing it under a magical light in the woods. I would even go as far to imagine a cardinal flying out from the snow covered branches, my strong Dad dragging the beautiful pine to the car tying it to the roof. All of us smiling and singing Silent Night on the way home. Mom would make us hot cocoa mounded with marshmallows, and we would snuggle under blankets cozy and warm.

Nope, simply not the case, my Dad would drag the dry carboard box up from the basement, and we would start sorting branches in the livingroom light by a glowing television. I do not recall what was on the television. Little House on The Prarie, Gunsmoke, The Waltons, Carol Burnett, Hee-Haw, Lawrence Welk, Marcus Welby could have been any of those shows.

Dad had the job of putting the lights on the tree. Which was a job that evolved over the years, from the years of the big fat hot bulbs to the tiny white twinkle lights. Some years blinking on and off, other years lights just glowing through the night. That decision was always left to my Mom. Mom ussually just wanted the lights left glowing, but I think a few years she let dad tweak them to blink on and off which drove her nuts every year she agreed to it.

Mom would decorate the whole tree with her "good ornaments", and then her awful silver or gold garland. And then we would get to pull one ornament out at a time, and my Mother would direct where we could place it on the tree. (Yeah Mom was a little OCD). After all was done, the lights and television were turned off for a collective ahhhhhhh by the group of 5. 30 seconds later, the tv would come back on.

Upon marrying my Dear Husband, and taking my vows of marriage seriously. I also vowed I would NEVER EVER have a fake plastic tree in my home.

Jokes on me, and the empty cardboard box is in the garage to prove it.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Position of the week #8

“But tomorrow and plans for tomorrow can have no significance at all unless you are in full contact with the reality of the present, since it is in the present and only in the present that you live. There is no other reality than present reality, so that, even if one were to live for endless ages, to live for the future would be to miss the point everlastingly.

If happiness always depends on something expected in the future, we are chasing a will-o'-the-wisp that ever eludes our grasp, until the future, and ourselves, vanish into the abyss of death.”
(Alan Watts, The Wisdom of Insecurity)

My new yoga class is working out splendidly. The time flies, and that is always a great indicator. My instructor also pushes me, which I need. She is almost 60,(mother of nine) and in great physical condition...inspirational.

I have been using hand weights with standing asanas.

She has also been pushing me to try harder positions. Last nights class concluded with a series of fantastic and challenging ashataga positions. Which are positions I prefer, but always find somewhat frightening. There is great possibility of falling.

So last nights position was one I had not tried before. Very hard to find photos online of the darn thing as well.

I did it, and I didn't fall.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

You don't have to go home, but you can't stay here....

6 Hours prior to party.....

Making a Wish....

After consuming 2 bites of cake......

Party Over.