Friday, May 30, 2008

while I am gone, watch some Avengers for me...

I packed my box set...

darn it

pulling the shades.......

Going dark.

Swamped, and need to be out of here ASAP.

My Dad will have no internet...

Play NICE PEOPLE!

ready for the stage....




Ok, the Moms had strict orders to put makeup on our 3-4 year olds....

for ballet.

The ballet teacher said "for stage", she wanted brown eye shadow, blush, and lipstick.

I take issue with this.

EVERYONE knows they are 3-4, lets let them look like they are 3-4.

We also had to slick back hair...I get that, so I did do it.

I ran the brush over her cheeks so PN would stop whining about it...

But she is precious, and we are on our way to rehearsal.

I wonder if they will let us slide, or if this gal wants to go to fight club over tarting my 4 year old up....because I am ready to go. All of this packing has made me agreeable, and friendly.

,

I have returned...very brunette!

No highlights, nada.

Almost out...and homeless

2 days, and done.

2 days holy cow.

And as melancholy as I felt yesterday, frankly I am over it. (That was quick) I know!

In other news, DH and have both agreed on a homes.

Not an easy task I PROMISE you.

We are yin and yang sometimes. And the house hunt has been one of those points of contention. Oddly enough, I am the utilitarian no frills person. DH likes things a little more lavish than I do. And when I say lavish, that does not mean much, because I am really utilitarian.

The home prices are about double what they are here. Mostly because they have basements. They do not here. However I will say Arkansas builders do make prettier homes. The cost of brick and stone here is MUCH CHEAPER than up north.

I prefer ranch style homes. Probably because I grew up in ranches. However in Nebraska they seem to be building ugly ranch homes. Pretty on the inside, but the outside is a little dull. Garage up front, and then plain old siding.

Here is an example of a 297,000 home in

Arkansas



And a 297,000 home in
Nebraska



See what I mean?

I will say this, I adore the community we will be moving to. They have some of the best schools in the state, and there is little in the way of crime...

I still have some shock in the difference of the facade of a home though....

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Last Day of Mother's Day Out, and that is almost a wrap folks...

Today was PN's last day of "school"...she just started a couple of months ago, when I decided to get the home ready for sale etc. but she took like a fish to water. She is my social butterfly, my little Mommy, she is the neighborhood snoop. She either has children here, or is over there, or is out of doors just waiting for ANYONE. So school was a piece of cake. She likes helping the younger children, she enjoys seeing other children we see at the gym, or at ballet, or from the park. I am guessing she will either become some sort sort of publicist, an event organizer, or a paratrooper. I cannot narrow it down yet. But she does not enjoy down time. She is the "on" child....


Today was the last day, and the teachers had tears in their eyes as we left....

She enjoyed them just as much.

Frankly I am surprised at how hard the goodbyes have been. I have been ready to leave here for quite some time. I tried to adjust, and did so for the first few years, but it was like sticking a square peg into a round hole. It just never happened. It never felt comfortable. Probably because we knew it was not forever....

But today it really hit me, that I was taking the collective away from the only thing they know....this is comfortable for them, and thank goodness for the resiliency of children. They will be fine, I have been reassured of that by folks that have transferred often with cooperate America, military brats that are now grown.



Goodbyes are no fun, and I am not good at them, they are a little painful.

One big one to go, my hairdresser tomorrow...

And that is going to be the hardest for me. She is my friend...

After my Mom passed, and I moved back here after caring for her, and I was a fresh Mom, and DH had returned the first time...he made an appointment for me to go to the spa. A massage, a hair cut and style, a facial, and a manicure...and they were done by my current hairdresser...

Her Father in Law had just passed away, and she had just moved here from New York. Another square peg in a round hole. We became fast friends. She has seen me through short, long, straight, curly, VERY SHORT, dark, and even an auburn phase...and now my hair is almost the same as it was years ago, and I am going back. the color now, is no longer for fun, it is to cover the gray I seem to be getting....I will turn 38 in a couple of months.

38.

We had not intended on staying here as long as we did, but I guess that does not make any difference now, we are moving, and it is coming fast. And it is what we wanted...

But as ready as I have been ready to leave this place. I am taken by surprise at how it tugs at my heart to say goodbye...

Rachel Ray is a Jihadist...I knew there was a reason I did not like her

rachel ray scarf

Rachel Ray's stylist decided it would be "cool" for the very irritating Rachel to wear a keffiyeh in a recent Dunkin donuts advertisement.

The ad was pulled because the blogosphere was in a toot.

Good for the blogosphere.

Other keffiyeh wearers include...



Wednesday, May 28, 2008

laaaaaaa.....(you know the sound the sky makes when angels appear)

Called my hairdresser today....

Can you see if Nula can get me in PLEASE.....

And amazingly enough, I am getting in!!

I have not been in for a while, my hair looks a mess, and I know she will cut it, so the next person can use it as a map. You see I have fine naturally curly hair. (Even my gray hair is coming in curly.....I am tired of pulling it out. And if I keep pulling it out I will be bald).

I will look shiny and new when I arrive at my Fathers!

Hoooray! I am thrilled.

I also will get to say goodbye to one of the only constants I have had in 8 years. My beloved hairdresser who is the BEST inside and out. And her NY accent is something I lurve.

Friday, I will look shiny and new.

Holy Moses!

I just got my medical bill, from my chest CT scan.

It was 1,988.88.....

Seriously.

I was blessed to have 2 insurances.

but I still owe $$$.

And I hate to complain about medical care prices. I do.

But I know people that do not go to the Dr. because of prices like these.

I recall my Father being life flighted from our hometown to Omaha in 1988, and the cost was $7,000...

He was legally dead for some time and it was a life flight...his hospital stay was over a month.

My Mothers battle with cancer was also a costly battle. In the end, when she was no longer eligible for tried and true treatments, but was still wanting to fight, her Physicians found a pharmacuetical company, that had chemotherapy for brain cancer, and she so wanted to get better. The chemotherapy was essentially 3 pills. $7,000 per treatment. But when you are dying I guess you will try just about anything.

Today's bill was a reminder for me to stay healthy, and take good care of myself and my family....

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Whatever will be, will be. Or the Tyler Durden says I told you so....

Yesterday, and today have gone by as quickly, and as slowly as they could.

It is strange.



All calls to power companies, water, phone etc have been made.

And I am getting excited for Chapter 5 to begin.

There is the realist, the cup half empty, the worrier in the recesses of my brain that keeps flashing a dull yellow light. Caution, SLOW. And then the voice says....

recess: "I hope this was the right decision."

AWTM: "greeaat, nice you come up with this- NOW?"

recess: "nah, I have been thinking it for some time."

AWTM: "Well it is too late now goofball."

recess: "not to late to put you in a last minute panic."

AWTM: "You are the queen of that, the expert, the doubting Thomas."

recess: "hey, it is what I do. I am "the I told you so"

AWTM: "life is what you make it, right?"

recess: "it is, so why are you leaving."

AWTM: "things here were not following our 5-10 year plan, we have choices you know."

recess: "choices, yes. Let us just hope this wasn't like spinning some roulette wheel."

AWTM: "stuff a sock in it."

recess: "so what do you want?"

AWTM: "I want what everyone else wants."

recess: "fortune? fame? Do you think you are heading to OZ.?"

AWTM: "You kill me. Seriously. No I want good health, happiness, I want my family to be able to be together, I miss my friends and family. They mean a great deal to me."

recess: "You know, when you pull into the state, things will not light up to technicolor. You now that don't you?"

AWTM: "Do you think I am overly optimistic, because if you do....you really do not know me. BTW, this is ridiculous."

recess: "Me?"

AWTM: "Yeah you....now please stuff a sock in it, and lets get some work done, clock is ticking."

recess: "I know I can see it on the wall."

AWTM: "Enough already. it will get packed...LAST."

recess: "ridiculous indeed."

Day 3 of refugee camp living





Another of the schools retired volunteers, another of SR favorites!

PN consumed about 5 flavor pops!

Pictures from the last day of SR's school. The Academy held a picnic and play day for all of the kids. they had a blast. And it was a great way to end the year for all of the kids.



I am being dramatic...

But living out of suitcases, and not having certain conveniances has reminded me of how blessed I am.

We are down to the nitty gritty here. Ain't much left to move.

That final strange load. Ick.

I have SR's room cleaned, and need to spackle nail holes today.

PN's room is on the to do list.

Kitchen cupboards will be cleaned out today.

I went to the water company this a.m. to fill out the paperwork to have water turned off.

Filled out my change of address form online.

Oye Vey....

SR is done with school.

PN has today and Thursday left at MDO.

Dance recital rehearsal, and performance is the only BIG OBLIGATION left.

And then we are done.

End scene

Monday, May 26, 2008

Honoring our Nations Heroes on this Memorial Day








DH's good friend

Chief Warrant Officer Patrick W. Kordsmeier, 49, North Little Rock, Arkansas. 39th Support Battalion, 39th Brigade Combat Team, Arkansas Army National Guard, 1st Cavalry Division. Killed when mortar rounds hit his camp in Taji, Iraq, on April 24, 2004.




The Collective and I were honored to attend our local Memorial Day service this morning.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Decoration Day







Today was our last Sunday at our church...

I was running late this morning. But The Collective and I made it to church. PN got the medal at Children's church this morning. SR went with me to big church.

It was a lovely service, that opened with prayer for the fallen and families. I am lucky to have a Pastor that was a Marine in Vietnam. He did not take this Memorial Day lightly.

He reminded everyone to keep all of those in our prayers....

We are so blessed to live in a country where we are cared about by people who might NEVER know us, but care enough about protecting us from evil.

Who care enough about us to die fighting on our behalf.

feels like

It is 88 today, but feels like 96% ick humidity....

The last 2 days have been terribly humid.

Remind me how much I loathe it when it is 30 below

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Downhill.....

Progress FINALLY. After weeks and weeks of packing, a light is peeking through.

PN's room- packed

SR's room- packed

Main bathroom- packed

Out of doors thingy's- packed

My bathroom- packed

My room- 75% packed

3 closets - cleaned and packed....

I might make it to Nebraska without a straightjacket...

Sucks.

The packing...

uh yeah it sucks. I am sick of it.

Yesterday we bubble wrapped furniture, took apart beds, wrapped things, and carried them into the truck. Carrying the couch sucked, and not because it was heavy, just because my reach is not long enough, and they are made for lounging on, not carrying about.

It sucked.

We no longer have a kitchen table, that also sucks.

My mattress is on the floor, box spring is in the truck....

That sucks too.

I know it could suck worse.

Knowing what a wuss I am sucks.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Memorial Day

Graduation




SR and his teacher and TA!

Last night was wonderful! SR has graduated kindergarten! There were 4 graduates, from kindergarten! They looked precious.

SR did a great job, and I was so proud of him. They even performed a song/dance number, and then later a song.

The entire school put on a program, and all students did well.

I managed to make it through sans tears, until SR's TA came up and told me goodbye, and how special he was to her. We both cried, and it was sad. I will miss her very much. She has a great way with all of the children, and they are so lucky to have her volunteer so much time.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Fish don't fry in the kitchen

This moving process, has been an enlightening process. I am my own worst enemy some days. There have been more days where I have been tougher on myself than I should. I am my worst critic in most instances.

One day I will think I am kicking @$$ and taking names, and the next day, well I think I am light years behind. Quite a mind screw when you do it for any length of time.

There are times I am most thankful for my blog and the records I keep. As it is a reminder of dates, and events. And this is one of those times. I need to keep reminding myself, that it has only been about one month since we sold the house. And although I have been packing for months. Well I still run the house. Running a house, well it does take a little time.

I seem to be in a panic about every other day right now. "Am I where I need to be?" A good question, but heck, there is nothing to measure it against, so no point. Head down go go go. If I am honest with myslef, it appears I am about where I need to be with everything.

So I am gonna try and knock it off....because it is pointless.

Going to get DH from the airport today! I did not fashion a bikini out of the bubble wrap.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Heartland.......

I really hope you take the time to watch this...

12 days

WOW.

12 days, and we are homeless.

Seriously.

I am not worried, as The Collective and I will be staying at Grampanio's house. Lots of fresh air,, dirt, Tonka trucks, dirt, a tractor....and best of all Grampanio. Oh and his asparagus is coming up right now! So I am guessing it should be rhubarb time too.

We are having some trouble locating a home right now with EVERYTHING we want. I am a tire kicker by nature. A salesman's nightmare really. However, I know we will know the moment we walk in right?

DH should fly in tomorrow for Kindergarten graduation, help pack, and load a truck. Finish sorting some final things out around here.

So far one storage unit full. 2 U-Haul trips down.

Hoping we can do it with 2 more.....

I have bubble wrap arriving today via FEd-ex. I might meet DH wrapped up in it at the airport.

Monday, May 19, 2008

'Raqstar

Check out Mike The Marine....

H/T BlogMomma Tammi

run run run

OK....

I am going to go to bed early tonight....

I am pooped.

The amount of "screeching" here, is enough to rub me raw.



I hate loud...

school is almost out, the house is torn up, our toys are packed WOOOOOOOT, SCRREEEECH, HOLLLLA



@$%*.

OK.

Tomorrow is the last day I will have bothe of the Collective out of the house. And it is only from 9:15-1pm.....

So I am going to hit the GROUND RUNNING. COFFEE on BOARD. READY to kick @$$.



I mean the suckiest parts of this are behind me....

Right?

I may have mentioned that I will miss my garden.....



Today was a wash as far as packing goes. Between the school festivities, getting out of school early, ballet, mechanic, and store.....I managed to seal up 4 boxes.

I will miss my gardens, and managed to weed a bit.

School Days...

There is a flurry of activity here, and of course, it is timed exactly as we are heading out...

We are blessed, no doubt about it, but I feel as though I am on the fast track this week.

It is now 11:30am, and I am just sitting down for the first time today, and drinking my morning coffee.

This morning SR had school pictures, and there was an award ceremony at school. The school we send SR to is a Christian Academy. They offer pre-k-12 grade. There are 70 students, from kindergarten-12 grade. I have enjoyed that part of the school very much. The older students do keep an eye out for the little guys, they always greet them, they mentor them. And since we go to church at the same place, there is a sense of community there. This was important to me, especially since we have no family near. I wanted The Collective to feel a civic responsibility to something bigger, be part of a group....and I was lucky enough to find it, and am glad. And thank God daily, for putting me on that path.

The kindergarten year is now ALMOST complete, and I got to sit in on an awards ceremony this morning. I will make no secret that I got teary on and off through the entire awards. Not for just my child, but for EVERY student. It was touching, and moved me, and I am glad I got to be part....

Each student was assigned a biblical trait by his or her peers....and that was wonderful to see. What a difference a year can make in some childrens lives. A year can make a difference, I actually got to see it with my own child. But I was not the only parent who was smiling today.

The student that was having difficulty in public school mainting grades, made the B honor roll.

The student with cerebal palsy recieved basketball award.

The socially awkward child, who was awarded the highest averages in EVERY subject in his class, and also got MOST improved handwriting.

The hydrocephalic child, who was awarded most compasionate and merciful.

And there were so may other awards given, it is hard to think of them all.

I enjoyed listening to their teachers speak of them sweetly, and with tears in their eyes....

And my child.

My child who was terrified of school for the first 2 weeks, who was overwhelmed by the constant noise, and flurry of activity....my child who escaped the school building 2 times in the first week.

Well....

He managed straight A's this year, and is working a year ahead of his peers, he was given the trait of most equitable, and he was voted by his peers as most likely to be The President of The United States Of America......

and when they made that announcement, he said

"I want to be a math teacher."

I am blessed!

And I lived through kindergarten.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

15 more days and I am home.........

Swallowed

Is the weekend long, or are you happy to see me?

What a long weekend......

seriously.

LONG.

I must have packed at least 60 boxes since Thursday.

That is good.....

Everything just looks a mess, it freaks me out to have things in such turmoil, but hell until we are unpacked and settled.....it will be CHAOS!

Yea CHAOS.

crap.

I gave in and started packing The Collective's toys.

Climbing over them, was beginning to drive me batty





Tonight they have a water party at AWANA, and a cook out, so I must go gather their things..... pack a dry set of clothes in case....and get ready for my 2 hours sans children.....

SR graduates kindergarten this Wednesday. Daddy will get to come home and witness it, I will have to have a truckload of things ready for the U-Haul.....

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Survivor

Not kidding folks.

That is what it is beginning to look and feel like around Casa De Dust.

I mean sure, the eliminating day to day things from our normal lives. I have been doing that for what feels like MONTHS now. For the last 2 days I have been in the kitchen/pantry trying to figure out how I can run a house with the least amount of crap. I live in the United States, I am spoiled. I have decided to pack a black large rubbermaid tote with an electric skillet, a dutch oven, a small sauce pan, and a crock pot. 2 spatulas, 2 slotted spoons, knives, a can opener......I packed my beer opener...must find my multi tool....

Packing a kitchen is insane. I promise I am not one to have the latest gadgets either...I am not a gadget person. I am pretty utilitarian in the kitchen. But it is clearly insane that it has taken me this long to pack the darn thing.

The collective and I had to make a trip to the library today....

It is bug month. The Collective left with certificates.

Why?

SR ate 3 roasted crickets plain. He said they tasted like nuts.

SR and PN both ate chocolate chip, and cricket cookies....

Me, no thanks.

Packing the house is enough adventure for me.

park it...

Took The Collective +1 neighbor to the mountains this morning, to play at the park, and for a walk....

a gorgeous day. My allergies are still icky, but tolerable.

Stopped on the way home, fed everyone ice cream....

All 3 are at the neighbors now....

gonna pack.

Friday, May 16, 2008

18 boxes packed

2 boxes of booze

More boxes

Was on the tail end of boxes, ran out and got more...

I managed to get much of my kitchen done....

I will be needing bigger boxes soon.

PN is at the neighbors house....

Thank God for the neighbor today....it has made the process easier...

Thank God for PN's good mood today.

Red State Update....

No new tale to tell....

Trying to kick ass and pack....

Awaiting the PO address from DH, so I can deal with what is mail.

Ummmm....working on the budget which is evolving every day.

And yes, packing. I did not get as much packed as I would have liked yesterday, between picking up my car, going to the Dr. a trip to the gas station (who knew $20.00 could fill half of a tank?) I am used to putting a little over $70.00 in the truwk. Picking up The Collective from their respective places, and having 6 neighbor kids here last night having a water fight....yeah not nearly as much got packed as I would have liked. Maybe today.

I did pick up some non enviremental friendly plastic spoons, paper plates, and bowls yesterday. I am on dishes strike from here on out I believe.

Cooking is also on the back burner....it will be spaghetti, frozen pizza, salads, and sandwiches.

I HATE packing. HATE it. One box at a time right....?

Trying to think of what has sucked the most in this process....and I will say packing is worse than painting....the yardwork, well I enjoy that. Packing.....ick.

I am going to try to run out of boxes today, which will mean a trip to the liquor store. Do not worry folks I do not plan on buying a thing....a friend advised I packed the bar last, and it is well stocked.....and I picked up a 6 pack of Amstel light the other day. 1 bottle seems to taste delicious after packing all day....and I am not a beer girl.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

I might go to my 20 year

if I can dance to this....




I think I might still have moves....

maybe.

Sort of sad...

With 16 days left, I have been feeling a bit melancholy...

suprising

Since I know we are ready to leave...

But I have an identity here, and I know it will follow me, but I like being SR and PN Mom, I like being the garden lady, I like being the fill in yoga lady, I like being friends with my awesome librarians, I will miss church, and my Doc, and my hairdresser...I lurve her, and she can cut my hair. I will miss my vagina whisperer.....I will even miss being the fun house....

New beginnings, I know....and things can get better

I got my CAR today!!

YEAH!!!!

It drives loverly indeed.....

Baby fight club!

I need a cheerleader!!! Seriously. PLEASE!!!

16 days to pack....

16 days....

crap.

I have to pack the rest of the shenanigans...

Motivate me PLEASE!!!

maybe this will help...



after all it is simply putting things in boxes right?

20 year reunion....

I had an email this morning, informing me my 20 year reunion is coming up.....

HOLY CRAP...

20 years?

WTF?
Where did time go?

You mean I do not look 18 any more...?

Who knew....

20 years?

I do not know if I will attend......it was 3 years. 3 years of not such a great time...

Mem brains

I had a Drs. appointment this morning.

I started to feel exactly how I felt about a month ago, when I had pneumonia. Nice.

Cough, inordinate amount of mucus in my head....

Allergies.

Allergies, the predecessor to the pneumonia....

I had to get a shot of steroids in my caboose. Yeeeow!!

I am also the proud recipient of a prescription for Durahist...

I have to irrigate my sinus's 3 times a day.

I have also been advised to wear a mask while gardening....

Hawt....

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Obama keeps interesting company....

War of the retired person part 2

When speaking to my Father earlier today, I suggested he get a large plastic owl to put on his deck to scare the birds.

Which begs a question. Is having a big plastic owl on your deck worse than bird crap? I suppose it is a debatable point. I would pick the owl.

I need to call and see if he picked one up, and I will let you know if it works. If it does not, I mght borrow it at Thanksgiving.

And moving still sucks...

Just in case you were wondering...

sacs fifth avenue....

I had 2 mails today questioning the birds removing baby bord poop from the nests....

Here is a video

Fecal sac among birds, and certain species of bird nestlings, is a white, translucent sac containing the feces. It is removed from the nest by parent birds to help reduce disease, or odors that lead to predation.

War of the retired person....

I just got off the phone with my Father....

He is retired now.

The first order of business for him was the neighbors dog, who barked ALL day while they were at work. they would come home, the dog would be quiet for 30 minutes, and then it would bark all night long. They had the dog chained up, and the poor thing wanted to chase squirrels and the like. Well after 4 months of phonecalls, the dog is no longer there,

Today my Father was waging a war on dandelions. His well manicured lawn is an acre and a half. So he was out with his handy dandy weed sprayer....

Later today, he has to get out his pressure washer. Seems as though his well manicured lawn attracts the likes of blackbirds. The eggs are hatching, and the young ones are pooping in the nests. The Momma birds carry the poop out of the nest in their beaks...and drop it all over my Fathers home, deck, and driveway. He is currently going crazy. He thinks they are dropping their crap on his house on purpose....

I used to wear a headband, and wanted to be Belinda Carlisle....

who didn't?

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

enjoy

Flowers




The Collective got me tulips for Mothers Day! Gorgeous indeed!

(Thank you DH, I know The Collective cannot order things online yet, although they claimed they did)


Here are some gorgeous white roses from my climbing white rose bush. I planted it under my kitchen window in memory of my Mother....oddly enough, they started blooming on Mother's Day

passed....

Today was the buyers home inspection.....

It took from 8:30am-1:30pm...

Holy Crap...

The list is very minimal, but every socket, every lightbulb, every appliance etc was tested.

Done...

Should have the car by tomorrow.

My brain is mush.

And I am either sick, or my allergies are exascerbated. Unsure...

Pack, pack pack...........

Monday, May 12, 2008

If there were a contest this Spring...

called how many things can you do in one month, I might win.

I bought a used car today.

I have been driving it

I took it to my mechanic

Things that needed fixing are being fixed

Insurance, paperwork, etc....done...

Thank You USAA....they made my entire day easier.

the dinner table....

Tonight at the dinner table, there were the 3 of us.

PN: "We had a giant come to school last week."

SR: "It wasn't a real giant, just an abnormally tall fireman."

PN: "It was real."

SR: "He just looks like a giant, because you are short."

You wanna know why people do not move regularly?

Because it sucks

That's why.

Our movee is only days away now.

Really.

and with all of the loose ends I have that need to be tied up....I hope it is enough time.

Not to mention the packing.

I swear I am at the point where now everytime I open a drawer I want to throw everything out....

In other news, I may have have found a car.

I take it to my mechanic this morning for a once over....

So in the last month, I have sold a home, learned all about real estate contracts, went on a trip, and might have purchased a car...

frankly, I am fried folks....

and the idea of packing the rest of the house in such a short time is a bit overwhelming.

Time to EMBRACE the SUCK

Sunday, May 11, 2008

My Mother's Day/ White House post......









OK, I am here to check in with yawl, and long to write something, and anything. So I will attempt it, even if my skull is a jumble of fluff and mallow.

First off, Happy Mother's Day to all of the Mothers in the blogosphere. You each make it look effortless, and easy. And it is not. Motherhood is tough, and hard. And watching your children is like watching your heart with legs on it. So please continue to do your best.

Second, The White House trip was AMAZING to me. Seriously. I kept pinching myself. The trip was a military spouse appreciation event. In total there were 1,100 of us. I need to send the President and his staff a Thank You note, and must make the time to write several thank you notes this week.

Due to Southwest Airlines, (who only got my business, because I only had a couple of days to make arrangements) I was about 7 hours later getting to DC than I had hoped.
Which means I missed out on good wine, and conversation with many good friends. I did spend more time than I would have liked at Chicago MDWY.

As I blogged about earlier I forgot my makeup, many of you did not get the need I have to wear a mask...well it freaked me out. I am vain and a narcissist (hence the blog all about me). However, AFW, not only schlepped me from the airport, and all over the place, let me use her flavia, sleep on her sofa, AND she let me borrow her makeup. Thank You AFW! I forgot all about it....eventually

I put pantyhose on in front of like 5 women, and no one took photos! For those of you not familiar with pantyhose, let me assure you, it is one of the most humiliating tasks on the planet. Nothing pretty about sticking yourself in something much smaller than you.

I almost got in a fight with someone at the airport. She pulled in front of MY girls....I forget what I said, but I must have looked like I meant business because she moved.

Anywho, so we all woke early got pretty and went to the WH. A policeman identified our group as going to the WH. Unsure what that means...we must have looked EXCITED!

We get to the WH, and all I can think is amazing, AMAZING, I pinched myself once. And then of course, after they checked my ID and let me in, I pinched myself again. I was not sure if they would let me in.

I was in the backyard of the WH. More officially known as The South Lawn...I called my DH, and my Dad....had to. I informed them I was in the backyard of THE White House. But I kept wanting to call my Mom. Seriously folks. I kept having this conversation with my Mom in my head...

AWTM: "Mom, I am in the backyard of the White House."

Mom: "giggle"......

It was so strange, that I missed her soooo much that day. I think she may be the only person who would understand what a privilege it was for me to be able to visit that day. She might be the only person that might have understood why I kept getting teary...



My impressions The White House, is really as big as you think it would be. The gardens were lovely, and I wish I could have toured all of the gardens. The company for the day, was deserving of the treat. The White House Staff was personable, and kind. The red geraniums do look perfect on the veranda. The women and men being honored at the event were so humble.




Here is an excerpt from The President's speech...



So here’s why this event is happening. Twenty-four years ago, President Ronald Reagan signed a proclamation recognizing Military Spouses Day. And my own judgment is, is that we need to recognize military spouses every day. (Applause.) But this is the time of year that we honor the wives and husbands who support our men and women in uniform. And today, it’s my honor to welcome you here to the White House. I can’t think of a better place in which to say thanks. Whether you’re signed up for military life at the recruiting station or at the altar rail, each person — (laughter) — each person is a volunteer. And when you married your soldier, sailor, airman, Marine, or Coast Guardsman, you became more than just part of a family — you became part of our nation’s military family.

It’s not an easy life being in the military, particularly when we’re at war, and I understand that. For many of you it means packing up your belongings and moving on short notice. I suspect a lot of you have been on the move much more than you thought you’d be on the move. (Laughter.) For others it means living in a foreign land, which can be exciting, but it also means you’re far away from your extended family, and that’s hard. And for many of you, it means missing a spouse as he or she serves on the front lines in this battle to secure our country and to spread freedom for the sake of peace.

Being left behind when a loved one goes to war has got to be one of the hardest jobs in the United States military. Talked to a lot of folks who have been in the theater, as well as spouses, and it is clear to me the harder job in many ways is to be the person at home taking care of the kids and having sleepless nights as you pray for safe return.

You’re carrying out the burdens — you’re serving our country. And it’s noble service. And it’s necessary service. And the United States [of] America owes you a huge debt of gratitude. And so, on behalf of our people, thank you for what you’re doing. (Applause.)

One of the things I have learned in seven and a half years as the President is, as you’ve served our country, you also serve each other. I’ve spent a lot of time visiting our military bases here in America and across the world. And it’s been a great experience. What I’ve found is that there’s always a close-knit community, people who are sharing a special bond, and people who take time to look out after people. It’s a — it’s been an amazing experience to see the fabric of our military communities firsthand, and today we’re going to honor six military spouses who have done a little extra to serve your communities and serve the nation.



Here is a link to the EVENT, and in it there is a link to a video, in which you can hear Secretary of Defense Gates thanking not only the Spouses, but he wanted to make sure we knew what a privilege it was for him to lead our men and women. You can hear Phil Vasser singing The National Anthem, and then hear President Bush speak to all military spouses....

In the same article, you can read more about the AWARDEES, as well.
This year’s awardees were: Colleen Saffron, an Army wife; Ramona Vazquez, a Coast Guard wife; Bob Davidson, an Air Force husband; Ellen Patton, a Navy wife; Dawnle Scheetz, an Army Reserve wife; and Kaprece James, a Marine Corps wife.




All amazing, and inspiring.....

The day was a great reminder of what an amazing military family I belong too.

Safe....

We are safe!

Long night, as DH was on his return here...

He happened to be driving in between 2 storm fronts the entire time...

nerve racking.

Sounds like others were not so lucky...

Saturday, May 10, 2008

more Tornados

Holy Crap...

seriously.

We are back to playing cards in the bathroom.

sirens, etc...

busier than a 3 legged cat in the litter box...

Today I am packing lamps, amoungst other things. But I have decided I have a problem. You would think there was no overhead lighting here with the amount of lamps I have.

Just weird...

Stevin Cing is an asshole....

Thanks for the heads up Kevin.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Maybe in October I will have time to collect my thoughts...exhausted with no end in sight...







Here are a few more photos of my trip...waiting for a moment to catch my breath!

More photos of my trip






DH heads out tomorrow, and of course in typical Casa De Dust fashion, we continue to pack the truck. It is now 12:10am....I did take a bath, and am now helping pack the truck in my robe.

Neighbors are all in bed, and frankly, I am exhausted.

I do not have time to blog about my trip right now, but here are some more photos!! As soon as I have some time to put my thoughts to paper, I will.

Monday, May 05, 2008

I forgot

my makeup of all things...seriously, I forgot my makeup....

crap crap crap

when I told my husband tonight over the phone he said....

"you do not need makeup"...

he scores points

I am gonna get that

cookie...seriously I saw someone with one about 2 hours ago. It was the size of the guys head, and now I want one.

BTW, you see the strangest things while on the plane...

I sat by a 50-something woman who I swear had everything she owned in her purse. Seriously supplying other passengers with wet-naps, suckers, she had EVERYTHING in it.

ummmmm.....A Minnesota valley girl, which was weird, I am trying to figure out where she was from......North Dakota?

Maybe.....

Hurry, you can still vote!!!

Heck I know I have been!!

Our own Patti Patton Bader is MY FAVORITE MOTHER!

Every time I hear about Patti Paton Bader , the sentence usually starts with "you will not believe what Patti did, you will not believe what Soldier's Angel's did....."

I have heard many first hand accounts of what caring can mean, what it can do.

And I would love to see Patti honored for all of her hard work!

Douchebag of the day award

goes to Southwest Airlines!

thank you for not flying with a fuel leak....I did not want to go up in flames, but I also do not appreciate being trapped in a plane for an hour while you are checking "said fuel leak"...I also do not like flying stand by, and being bumped ahead another 5 hours...

I was supposed to arrive at my destination at 5:30pm...it is now 11:15pm...

Grrrr....

Southwest customer service ends at 5:30pm....

Grrr.....

I did not want to be grouchy

Sunday, May 04, 2008

DH is 20 minutes away!

It was hard getting The collective to bed tonight, despite being on the move from 6am-7:30pm...

Daddy is coming home for a visit, they sure missed him!

I have too...

Hold on....

Lord of the flies day here at Casa De Dust...

As soon as we pulled in from church today, the neighbor children were all out....awaiting The Collective's return.

The neighbor kids have been spending a lot of time here, which is fine with me. I have a couple of rules though...

Please send them in OLD CLOTHES, and do not expect them to stay clean...

My kids love playing in the mud, and frankly I could give 2 shits about it. As long as they are not fighting, I could care less, clothes/ shmothes, and kids rinse off pretty quickly with the assist of a hose.

I let my kids get dirty. we have an entire sand pit I made last summer. I also let kids play with the water hose, and make mudpies, sand cookies etc...

If your child is here, be prepared!

They will leave exhausted, and FILTHY. But I have noted, the dirtier you seem to allow kids to get, the less politicking, and bossing, and arguing happens...

and the kids were lined up beggin to come here and play today. I think it drives the parents wacky...


Dirty kids are happy kids...

I looked over at one corenr of the yard to find SR peeing on a tree, and PN at the other end, no shirt on lying in the wet sand, and mud painting herself with strange tribal children markings...

it was very Lord of the Flies...

Matt Lauer, put your carbon foot in your mouth...

I love Kevin!


Seriously...

You must READ!

Saturday, May 03, 2008

BTW, I am missing a grand tradition...

Looks like we are missing the Toad Suck Festival AGAIN this year...and to think it is a mere 20 minutes away.

OK, I suppose I can't make fun, after all I am from a state that has a testicle festival and Chicken days...

Hiking

I took The Collective to Pinnacle State Park this morning, for a hike, and play time....

pictures later...

In good news SR made it across the monkey bars...alone, without frustration. Success is good. I was proud as punch of him. He is not my physical child, he does not like risk, and monkey bars, as futile as it may seem to some...to SR a real challenge. I watched from the bench, and was actually tempted to go help him when I saw him struggle, but I did not. I waved, and gave a whoooo hooo from the sideline. He made it.

PN on the other hand, is my monkey child. She is my physical child, my aggressive child. Almost at the opposite end of the spectrum. She is confidant with her physicality.

After they were done on the playground, we went hiking, and holy moses. Despite my taking 2 sudafed prior to the trip my allergies about killed me. Not kidding. the culprit being random pollen, but also the wild jasmine....I have jasmine here, and can take it in small doses, but half way through the hike, found myself naseous, with a tremendous headaches, and unable to catch my breath....which has never happened. Strange things allergies. Damn jasmine....the bad part is, jasmine is such a great smelling flower, but seriously the scent of it was overwhelming to the point of sickness.....just strange. Lillies do the same thing, but I have never been surrounded by them like I was today....

ick....

I had to take benedryl upon my arrival home.....

ick....

Nice Shot.....Very cool news.



By Jamie Findlater
Special to American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, March 28, 2008 – A rock star is putting a successful music career on hold as he prepares to deploy overseas as a member of the Army Reserve.
“I think it’s the pinnacle of life to be able to say, when my country needed me, … I heeded the call,” Sgt. Frank Cavanagh said in an “America Supports You Live” BlogTalkRadio.com interview a week before deploying for training and eventually to Iraq.

Cavanagh was the bass player for the band Filter, and he recently participated in a reunion tour in Kuwait with Operation MySpace. Cavanagh left a successful eight-year music career behind to put his energy into serving his country in the Army Reserve. Now, as the excitement of the reunion tour has died down, he is focusing his excitement on a different type of tour in the U.S. military.

Friday, May 02, 2008

All clear....

pray no one got hurt or killed...

double warnings, and sirens blaring...

In the bathroom AGAIN...

3 hours total time in the bathroom today.

winds are feirce as well as the rain....

it keeps stopping and the skiy turns green, yellow...and nothing.

Frightening.

I grew up with tornadoes, and you could at least see where the weather was...

I am surrounded by trees, and cannot see a thing...

We are in the bathroom, playing round 8 of UNO

the entire state has them...

oye...

t TORNADO WARNING
Type Tornado Alerts
Expires 5/2/2008 12:30:00 PM
Updated 5/2/2008 11:57:34 AM
First Received 5/2/2008 11:57:34 AM
Severity Warning
Counties Lonoke (Arkansas), Prairie (Arkansas), Pulaski (Arkansas)

Subject TORNADO WATCH OUTLINE UPDATE FOR WT 249
Type Tornado Alerts
Expires 5/2/2008 3:00:00 PM
Updated 5/2/2008 11:57:34 AM
First Received 5/2/2008 11:57:34 AM
Severity Watch
Counties Columbia (Arkansas), Hempstead (Arkansas), Howard (Arkansas), Lafayette (Arkansas), Little River (Arkansas), Miller (Arkansas), Nevada (Arkansas), Sevier (Arkansas), Union (Arkansas)


ubject TORNADO WATCH OUTLINE UPDATE FOR WT 249
Type Tornado Alerts
Expires 5/2/2008 3:00:00 PM
Updated 5/2/2008 11:57:10 AM
First Received 5/2/2008 10:12:43 AM
Severity Watch
Counties Clay (Arkansas), Craighead (Arkansas), Crittenden (Arkansas), Cross (Arkansas), Greene (Arkansas), Lawrence (Arkansas), Lee (Arkansas), Mississippi (Arkansas), Phillips (Arkansas), Poinsett (Arkansas), Randolph (Arkansas), St. Francis (Arkansas), Dunklin (Missouri), Pemiscot (Missouri)

ubject TORNADO WATCH OUTLINE UPDATE FOR WT 249
Type Tornado Alerts
Expires 5/2/2008 3:00:00 PM
Updated 5/2/2008 10:12:19 AM
First Received 5/2/2008 8:53:03 AM
Severity Watch
Counties Arkansas (Arkansas), Bradley (Arkansas), Calhoun (Arkansas), Clark (Arkansas), Cleburne (Arkansas), Cleveland (Arkansas), Dallas (Arkansas), Desha (Arkansas), Drew (Arkansas), Faulkner (Arkansas), Garland (Arkansas), Grant (Arkansas), Hot Spring (Arkansas), Independence (Arkansas), Jackson (Arkansas), Jefferson (Arkansas), Lincoln (Arkansas), Lonoke (Arkansas), Monroe (Arkansas), Montgomery (Arkansas), Ouachita (Arkansas), Perry (Arkansas), Pike (Arkansas), Prairie (Arkansas), Pulaski (Arkansas), Saline (Arkansas), White (Arkansas), Woodruff (Arkansas)

Weather insanity

DH has been blizarded in western Nebraska...

of all things...

We were expecting him home.

Huh...

While shopping yesterday I noted no normal shoes available...

patent is now OK for day? As well as metallics?

I always thought that was a no no?

Anyone who is more fashion forward than I feel free to comment, I guess I am clueless...

Of Tornadoes and fluff brain

Tornadoes here today....

sirens off and on.

Lots of wind!

We will be in the bathroom.

Hail possible, so I just spent 40 minutes in the garage moving all of the staging areas around...in order to fit the truck in.

Crap

Signed,

Thursday, May 01, 2008

photos courtesy of my 4 year old

In order to get 5 minutes of free time, I gave PN the camera...

she is a natural I think

the slef potrait of her eating a stolen pop tart..says it all




Made/Maid

I need to start wearing tennis shoes to bed.

I woke

made coffee

made oatmeal

made sure I checked real estate listings in Lincoln. (Ughhh....brick ranch 4 BR, 3 car garage, 3 baths....it is impossible for under 350,000....puke)

made sure The Collective ate

made The Collective turn off cartoons

made sure homework was done

made sure everyone had underwear on

made up the beds

made myself get dressed

made lunches

made sure bills were paid

made sure I put stamps on the envelopes

made sure SR knew I lost the hot lunch menu, and he needs to ask his teacher for another one.

made sure I called DH

I need to go to go shopping today. I used to like going shopping, every year I have grown older I hate it.

The good news, The Collective will not be with me, so I do not have to hear about my "bumpy butt", or be asked "what is that", when pointing to the fat protruding over my bra strap...

and I will not have to listen to the chuckles coming out from other dressing room doors as I answer those things...