Sunday, August 26, 2012

I've got a plan, and it doesn't involve two roads that diverged in a yellow wood.

Here's an update:

1. I'm by myself again. Well, technically it's me and the little sweetheart, but as far as adults in the house... it's just me. Yes, I knew there would be times like this being married to a man in the military, but it still sucks, especially since I'm in pain. We found out my husband would be flying out to the mainland just a few days ago.... and he's gone already. He'll be back... but not too soon. Some d!psh!d!ot failed to communicate the proper information in a timely manner, or rather in ANY manner, until just days before his report date, so he had no options in asking for a deferment, which is basically rescheduling his course. **Please feel free to join me at this moment in giving him (the unnamed soldier) the finger he has earned** If it were just me, I wouldn't be so upset, but it's trying to keep up with my lively three year old that throws a wrench into the idea of "taking it easy."

2. I'm still in a great deal of pain. Nothing is comfortable. It's awful. I knew I had arthritis in my spine, but this is not arthritis. It's been severe pain daily for almost two and half months. I DO, however, now know the root of this evil pain! I was lucky enough to see not one, but two great orthopedic surgeons during my appointment this past Wednesday. Oh, and by the way, that was the day after we found out he'd be gone by now. (I guess I've made it quite clear, by now, how resentful I am to the @$#%! who failed in his job of relaying important and pertinent information, huh?) So, anyway, back to the source of my unrelenting pain. About 13 years ago I had a spinal fusion. I healed beautifully and quite quickly from this. I've very rarely had any issues with it, either. Well, because of the location of the fusion, it seems it has put a strain on the areas above and below. So, now I have a bulging disc right above the fusion, bone degeneration and bone spurs below the fusion, and something going on in my hips (SI joints)... mainly the left one. So, they want to do some epidural steroid shots in my hip and spine, reduce/alleviate the pain, and narrow down something or another. The last part I honestly didn't understand all of, but essentially he said that my symptoms were leading him to think there might be something else going on. Maybe, maybe not. But, first things first... get rid of some of this pain, and that way he'll be able to see what's left. I was worried how long it was going to take for them to get me a referral for the pain management, as I'd heard horror stories, but it came in on Friday. Now I just need the appointment. The Dr. said it would be quickly because it was coming from them. I'm really, really hoping that it's very soon. I don't care how bad the shots hurt, either... just as long as it helps me stand upright and walk.

That's it. Oh, and the absolutely only good thing about my wonderful, helpful, comfort-giving, positive-talking husband being gone is that it's going to be easy to drop off the eight/nine pounds I've gained over the last two months. I'm also keeping my fingers crossed that these shots work, because if they do, I might just fly to the mainland with Alyssa next month, grab my husband for the weekend, and attend my 20 year reunion! Who knows?

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Looking for a few good bones

I'm going to sit, which means this will be a short post: OK... here it is in a nutshell: I did something to my back on the day my girlfriend arrived for her visit, a month and a half ago. It hasn't healed. Can't sit. It hurts all the time... let's make this even shorter. Bitch, moan, whine, and throw in a couple hundred complaints. There you go! That's the last month and a half for me.

I had an MRI last week, and I'm going in for the results this Wednesday. I was in the ER two weekends ago because I literally couldn't stand, but it's improved slightly since then. They did an x-ray in the ER and the fusion in my lower spine looked OK so we're wondering what it could be.

Will update later...

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Seven shades of shady with an accomplice

I'm excited. Why, you ask? Well, in less than a week my cat and accomplice from college will be arriving. The accomplice is one wild woman, and the cat has been known to be seven shades of shady. It will be a week of fun, no doubt. We're going to a 50's dinner, out to ride go-carts, we're all going to learn paddle boarding, and I'm sure we'll fit in at least one "Girl's Only" night. In our downtime, we're going to the beach to build castles and be lazy.

Since Father's Day falls in the middle of this visit, I asked my sweetheart what his idea of a good time was. He replied "a quiet day." So, we're going to make ourselves scarce after making him a big breakfast, and let him play on the computer 'til his heart is content. He's been working so hard lately, too. They (his employers) are getting their money's worth out of him, that's for sure. I jokingly refer to his job as his "other girlfriend".  Well, she's got his attention more than I do lately, but I'm about to turn on the charm. I have ordered his gift and I know he's going to like it. Only because I didn't want to spend that much and risk him not liking it. SO, he's getting a nifty camera! A real one.... complete with a tripod, carrying case, shoulder strap... the works. I didn't mention the absolutely fabulous one piece bathing suit that I ordered at the same time. Why? Because I found a discount code that made said bathing suit a mere fraction of the original cost. This was all about him, anyway, so I though it was best to focus on the pertinent facts. But between me and you, it was a Lilibon bathing suit. Reversible, too. Considering the original price, the damn thing better make me look like Gisele Bundchen. Will update on that....

I'm moving forward with the FRG (Family Readiness Group, for any of you that don't speak Army). I've been doing on-line courses, and even gotten in a little practice on helping a few people. I must admit, I'm enjoying it. This is only the beginning, and I realize that what I'm about to jump into, versus what I've done, is only the tip of the iceberg. Either way, it's a good thing. I like seeing my daily planner (a new cute one from Target) filling up with meetings and social events.

On the medical front... I'm in awe of my iRenew bracelet. If it's a placebo effect, well, I'll take it! my pain level has reduced dramatically. And, on the specific topic of the botched surgery that was re-done after the initial surgery of last July... I've decided I'm okay. Yep. I'm setting it all aside. I met with one surgeon a few weeks ago who just left me with a bad feeling. He had another surgery approved with my insurance, but I just did not trust him. I called the insurance company, told them my concerns, and was approved to meet with another doctor (that I thoroughly researched online) that was within the network. I met with him this past Wednesday. Cool guy. He knew what he was talking about, spoke with me with a clear level of concern and respect, and told me what he thought. Basically, there's no surgery that will alleviate my pain. I'm not surprised with that fact. Maybe with time it will go away. Then he told me that he didn't truly believe that he could do a surgery that would "fix" what the other surgeon screwed up. That's okay, too. I had already come to terms with what is reflected back to me in the mirror. My body is amazing. I've survived having 3/4 of my left lung removed; I've survived having a spinal fusion; I've overcome complications from Endometriosis, and I've given birth by Cesarean to a wonderful daughter; I've overcome and dealt with several other medical challenges on a daily basis. I'm good. My immune system has my back (as my wonderful friend put it.) Whatever rash I'm dealing with may be my body's way of protecting me from something else. I've started doing more things that have put me in a different frame of mind. Call it "re-focusing", if you will. I'm giving back to my surroundings and appreciating more things that I may have taken for granted before. It's not hard to do that in Hawaii, either.

On a serious note, there's someone in my family that I am worried about. She's an amazing woman. She's sweet, she's kind, she brings a lot of people joy just by being around. We're all concerned and praying for her. She's dealing with some medical issues that are potentially very serious. Until we know she's in the clear, we're all holding our breaths. It's brought me back to the hope that prayer can work.

These are the thoughts that are important to me at this point: Enjoy life and those who bring you happiness. Focus on the good things about yourself and others. If you're in a hard spot, hold out... things always change.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Everything from Military events to "RUN LIKE YOUR HAIR'S ON FIRE!"

Yesterday was a busy and fun day for me. I got up early, showered, put my face on, did laundry, changed bed sheets, painted my toes, vacuumed, and then threw on a dress and boarded a battleship. Side note: I have officially found the perfect babysitter for daytime stuff, when my perfect babysitter for nighttime stuff is in school. YAY!

Bruce had invited me to a Change of Command Ceremony, and seeing as I'd never been to one before I wanted to go. It was on the USS Missouri which is a HUGE battleship that was as long as three football fields. I was told this by the nicest woman who personally walked me to the area where they were having the ceremony. I was dressed a little dressier than the casual tourist so maybe I stuck out. She just walked right up, asked me if I was going somewhere in particular, and then took the time to escort me. That's cool. I enjoyed the tidbits of information, too. After arriving at the area, I had a chance to chat with Bruce and watch while the company did a run-through practice. It was an absolutely gorgeous day, with a pretty strong breeze coming off the water. It was even nicer because we were in the shade, under a large tent.

After the ceremony, I stuck around for just a little while to watch the huge battleship in the background come in. It was quite impressive. I had no idea it was tradition for the Navy to stand on the deck when coming into port, or harbor... or whatever they call it when they come in.

I don't know if you can see the detail, but those are not little white posts going all around the battleship. That's the Navy.  

Since the perfect babysitter was telling me to take my time, I decided to go piddle around in Target. I spent a relaxing hour in there going through the clearance racks. I scored a cute Merona wrap shirt for .58 cents. Yes, 58 cents.

Two funny things happened after that. One was right before I went to bed and the other was after I'd been asleep for a couple of hours. The first thing is that someone asked Bruce if I would consider being the FRG leader for the company. What's even funnier about it is that I said yes. Oh lordy... what am I getting into?
The second funny thing that happened was the dream that woke me up at 1:30am. In the dream I was telling my sister to put on her Nike's and to "run like your hair's on fire!!!" Right after that I looked at an ex-boyfriend of hers from about 30 years ago (omg, that makes me feel old) but anyway... I looked at him and said through gritted teeth "I didn't like you then, and I do not like you now. Make one move and I'm gonna kick your ass." Well, he was scrawny in the dream with a dorky bowl cut, and he reached out towards me to be a smart ass to touch me. I flipped. That's when I woke up swinging and kicking in the bed. It makes me laugh. Thankfully Bruce didn't get hurt.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

I'm in looove

Tomorrow is my anniversary. Even as I type this, I'm grinning from ear to ear. I happened to have snagged Mr. Perfect-For-Me. Oh! He's just wonderful. He makes me laugh, he's so affectionate, and he understands me and my particular shades of crazy like no other. On top of all that he's pretty damn cute to boot. I admire this man and am so proud to be his wife. He seems to be smitten with me, too, so it's an even trade.

We met years ago through a mutual friend. I had just moved from TN to MD for my job. So, I was new to the area and hadn't made many friends. As a matter of fact, our mutual friend was someone who had worked with both of us. His name is Jesse and he'll always hold a special place in my heart for the simple fact alone that without his persistence that I join them on that New Year's Eve, I never would be where I am today. Jesse had invited me twice to go out with this group of people to the Hard Rock Cafe, but I'd said no twice. The third time he called me and said something along the lines of "I know you're not doing anything but sitting around in your apartment. Someone backed out and the ticket is already paid for so you better plan on coming. We're going by limo." I said yes because he was right. All I was doing was sitting around my apartment looking for another job since my company had decided to close 73 markets four months after I relocated. Thank god I'd saved my money as I was able to wait two months for the exact job I wanted. But that's why I had said no the first two times. I was trying to save money.

So, on New Year's Eve I show up at Jesse's house. I walk in the door and see a group of people laughing and having a good time already. Not knowing anyone but Jesse, I felt a little shy. He asked if I wanted some wine, to which I of course answered "YES" and I followed him into his newly remodeled kitchen. As he was pouring the wine, Bruce joined us in the kitchen. I noticed he was probably the only one there around my age. I had a brief thought that he was handsome, but seeing as I had gotten divorced in the previous year, I was NOT thinking about men. My focus was my career. So, that's where the thought stopped. The limo arrived a few minutes later. We all piled in and to make a long story short: we all had an absolute blast that night.

These are pictures from the limo ride to the Hard Rock Cafe that night. Of course, this was on the way there, so we were all pretty much sober at this point. The pictures taken a few hours later tell a much different story but to protect all those involved I won't post them.

That is the beginning of my story with the most wonderful man. Our story still continues, too. I look forward to each and every day and can't believe I got so lucky to have found a man of such caliber.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Am I pretty like you?

Yesterday I was reading through the brief little bits of news posted on Yahoo. There are always several that catch my attention that I open in separate tabs. When I got to the story about Samantha Brick's article, I chuckled to myself a little bit. Her article was about how being attractive has made some things difficult and other things easy in her life. I initially chuckled because I thought "Yeah, you got it hard when men buy you drinks... don't look a gift horse in the mouth." When I got to the bottom of the article I began reading the comments. That's when I realized humans can be a nasty, vicious lot. I was disgusted and sad.

All throughout the media, woman are brainwashed into thinking that they're not beautiful unless they meet a certain standard. This standard, as the media would have you believe, is impossible to meet unless you are a leggy, nearly-anorexic teen, with long, thick lustrous hair. The advertisers would like you to believe that it all can be attained through the latest cream, diet pill, shampoo, slimmer spanx, make-up, or a visit to any plastic surgeon that happens to be in the area. As much as I love to read the celebrity gossip in Star, they're down right mean when it comes to the issues of "Stars with out make-up" or the "Best and Worst" of stars in their swimsuits. Poor Julie Bowen from Modern Family, who I think is sexy, cute, and funny, got torn apart for having (god forbid) a few little wrinkles on her belly after having kids. **hands to mouth, with bulging eyes** OMG... who does she think she is to put on a bikini??? Get real. She rocks.

There is one good thing, for the reader, that may come out of this... but only one, and it's at the expense of the human being being criticized. For just a brief moment, the reader may look at the picture, compare herself (or himself) and get a small bit of satisfaction that they don't have the cellulite, the wrinkles, the thighs, or whatever it is that they think less of themselves for. For that moment only, they might say to themselves, "I must be OKAY. I don't look like that." But what happens when we change the channel or put the magazine down? We go back to our own "real" life, and eventually pass a mirror. And I bet that when many people who pass that mirror, stop and judge themselves, they're not even remembering the bit of comparison that was made against the star earlier. I'm willing to believe that most just go back to seeing what they'd like to fix. Even the "beautiful" people. Is anyone ever satisfied? I do not know of one person who wouldn't change something, if they had the money and/or the motivation.

Back to the article. These people attacked her by the thousands. They slaughtered her. They ripped her apart. The called her names. They told her she was delusional, ugly, fat, narcissistic, crazy... every imaginable insult that could be hurled, they hurled. Some people even went so far as to point out every single thing that they thought was not beautiful about her. This was from both men and women.

I'm going to compare this to something else to make a point. There is a website that I visit that is a support site for military spouses. Anytime a spouse has a concern about cheating or flirting or even just being away for a long time, the person is usually inundated with responses of how they should be more secure. Some literally pick on the person, instead of trying to help. Honestly, you'd think some of these women doling out advice must be drop dead gorgeous with amazing bodies, and that they've never, ever, ever been cheated on. Either that or they just find it easier to stick their heads in the sand. The reality of it is this: It doesn't matter how attractive you are. Some might be surprised to know that most people who cheat, cheat with someone who is not as attractive as their spouse. So, where does that leave all those women who boast that confidence will maintain a relationship? It doesn't. People who cheat will cheat. Most women are so scared of the "pretty woman", when they should be leery of the woman with less-than-a-model appearance. Even I'm guilty of this on occasion. I remember when I was dating a guy in college and had my epiphany. It was during summer break... the fourth of July to be precise, and I was on the phone with the guy. He told me he'd kissed another girl a few nights prior. I knew this girl. My ego took a blow. I immediately broke up with him on the phone and told him to enjoy himself with her. I hung up and cried for about five minutes. It wasn't because I was heart broken. I was actually a little bit relieved to have an excuse to break up with him. What made the 19-year-old-girl-that-I-was-at-the-time cry was the fact that this other girl had thin lips. Yes... thin lips. I couldn't understand why he'd find her more attractive when she had thin lips. Which leads me to this: Beauty is not solely what the eyes can see. It is a combination of attitude, flair, the sound of a voice, the mannerisms that are unique to that particular person, how loyal they are, how they sing (I find it incredibly sexy when someone who can't carry a tune in a bucket, and knows it, can belt out singing just for the fun of it)... It's any multitude of things, which can only be defined by "essence". Yes, there are the people that are extremely photogenic. It doesn't matter how they stand, which side is facing the camera, whether or not they're wearing make-up, they just end up looking cute in the picture. Yeah... I'm a little jealous of those people. But I wouldn't hold it against them. If anything, I just try to smile bigger the next time I'm caught in a photo with them. It's true that it increases your "face value". My idea is that people who look like they're having fun always look good.

I feel so sad for that poor woman. She was trying to pose a question. One of "why do women treat other women badly because of how they look?" Instead, because she mistakenly phrased it all in a way that came off as vain (and yes, it DID sound vain), she was torn apart. I can only imagine how this will scar her. Will she ever put on a pretty dress and a bit of make-up, take a look in the mirror and think "I look fabulous, dahling!"... or will there always be the vicious remnants of those comments flashing through her psyche telling her a plethora of insults for the rest of her life? I bet the latter.

How are we as women, from childhood to our senior years, ever supposed to believe that we are beautiful? There's always someone prettier, thinner, smarter, funnier, sexier, YOUNGER. Well, for me... I'm just going to keep on fighting the good fight. I have the white girl butt. I have body hair with a sick sense of humor that shows up in places it shouldn't. I have adult acne combined with melasma. I've got a wicked little rash on my feet that only time will heal. My natural hair color (if I remember correctly) is that yuck shade of something that's not blond, not brown, and not even shiny.... hell, it's not even thick. I also have scars all over my body. There's a little saggy skin on my tummy where I gained so much weight during my pregnancy, then lost it a little too quickly a few years later. I have broad shoulders, big feet, no hips, and a chin that I've been told makes me look like I'm related to Jay Leno. I've been told I look like Rikki Lake and Joan Cusack. That last one actually made me cry, and still haunts me. But then again, isn't Joan Cusack beautiful in her own right? I've seen pictures of her where she could be described as pretty.

And you know what? Then there's the other side of it. I've also been told (now this is through many different stages throughout my life) that I look like Drew Barrymore and Princess Di (both in college), Uma Thurman, Mariska Hartigay and Jane Seymour (most recently, and by a few different people). You, the reader, may be laughing. Even I did... but whomever said it must have seen something that reminded them of that person. It may have been something in my eyes, the slant of my nose, the line of my jaw, my hairstyle, the way I laughed... who knows? Either way, I took it as a compliment. They are all beautiful in some way... and so am I. I like my legs. I like how my arms look toned with no effort. I like that, in clothes, I look tall and lean. These are some of the positive things I tell myself. It's important for all of us to find the things we like about ourselves. Mean people will always be around to do their thing... they're not really happy. They're mean because it makes them feel better. Maybe they've been beaten down by other bullies, or told by one too many people that something should be "fixed". Either way, it's sad... and it hurts anyone who is at the receiving end of it.

Think Charlize Theron in that movie "Monster". She was not what one would call attractive if we saw her out in public... then think Charlize Theron in almost anything else. Gorgeous! We just watched her in "Young Adult" the other night. Although she wasn't by any means unattractive, one could see both sides of the coin. Most women don't wake up looking fabulous. It's a process. I can relate to the process she went through to get ready... except for the hair extension/clip, but I'll admit I've thought about buying

So, as much as we've been brainwashed to beat ourselves up over... don't do it. Don't fall for the negativity. If it takes you ten minutes to get ready and feel your best, then good for you. If it takes you two point five hours... then so what?! As long as you look in the mirror and think "That's the fabulous side of ME" then you're on the right path. Don't give those wrinkles, extra pounds, bumps, scars, cellulite... WHATEVER it is that we are mean to ourselves about... any more thought. You got what you got, and there's not much you can do but make the best of it. Slap on that lipstick, put on that push-up bra, do what YOU do to feel pretty, then sing off-tune while you sashay down the street. And know that no matter what.... someone thinks something about you is enviable. While you're at it... hand out a couple of compliments to other women. It'll come back to you, I promise.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

How I plan to stay out of jail.

I should be organizing. I should be cleaning out drawers. I should be making a list and taking pictures of the items I'm going to sell online and adding them to an Excel spreadsheet. I should be going through all the clothes and separating them for donations and a yard sale. Yet, all I'm doing is procrastinating. I told myself an hour ago that I was going to type out a to-do list. It's time for lunch, though, so that's my excuse for now. We've been in our house for five weeks. FIVE weeks! Where is my motivation? Did I leave it back in Georgia? That's it! I simply forgot to pack it. Where can I go out and buy some more? But it's got to be on sale, too. Hmmm... so it's not for sale at all? What's a lazy girl to do? I guess it's back to the idea of breaking everything down on a list, and marking things off one by one. Boooooooooooooring. **eye roll**

I tried redirecting the blame, but I fear it's not working. I've told Bruce I need some help about 10 times. Each of those times I briefly felt a little lighter in thinking he might just motivate me. He keeps saying we'll work on it on the weekend, but then the weekend comes and somehow or another we manage to avoid the boxes. Upon reminding him again yesterday, he said "Woman! What do you want me to do?" I told him to simply grab a box and put the stuff away. He said "And where exactly do you want me to put it?" Darn it... he stumped me there. At this point, our bedroom dresser is a pile of odds and ends, the storage closet upstairs is packed to the gills with boxes (some have donations in them already.... the remnant reminders of a bygone energy) and the downstairs storage closet is full with furniture that we won't be using. All of Alyssa's dresser drawers are full of my old clothes, which the movers didn't bother to pack... they just left everything in the dressers. This meant that several items were damaged when they turned every single dresser on it's side in shipping and the clothes all rubbed back and forth on the rough underside of the drawer above it. That was two months in storage on a boat, and who knows where else. So, add that to the list of things to seperate for the damages claim. Then there's the garage. It's full of everything else, and some boxes of Christmas decorations. I don't even want to think about the garage... ugh.

What surprises me is my lack of usual anal tendencies that veer toward the maniacal style of Martha Stewart. I can hear ol' Martha in my head saying "This is NOT a good thing." But, what's so great about Martha, anyway? Even when all her stuff is organized, even with her own TV show and overly expensive line of items for sale... the woman ain't really that happy. I hear she has a tumultuous relationship with her daughter. She got into some kinda trouble that landed her in jail. Her fling with Anthony Hopkins sure didn't last... he seemed like a keeper, which makes me think the issue might be her. SO... after all this rationalizing, I've come to the conclusion that in order to keep my marriage happy, my future relationship with my daughter on the right track, and most importantly to stay out of jail, I just shouldn't worry about it too much. It'll get done when it gets done. Right?

Friday, March 30, 2012

Distraction or Bribery? Either way, someone's getting a good steak out of this.

It's FRIDAY! Yay!

We've still got a ways to go for everything to be in it's place in our new house, but it's coming along. Alyssa now has her own playroom, which means we now have an adult living room that is a toy-free-zone. Her playroom looks as if a bottle of pepto-bismol exploded in it, but I imagine any girl between the ages of 2-10 would like it.

Tomorrow I have a date with the cutest guy. We'll be going to the matinee of John Carter and then out to dinner, followed by a walk on the beach. Hmmm... what to wear? Oh... I better make a reservation somewhere, too.  I think we'll try someplace new. The food at the Chart House was disappointing last weekend. This was at least the third time my husband has ordered a steak in Hawaii, and everytime they're almost yuck. Seriously, when someone pays for a good steak, and I'm not talking about $18 at a Ruby Tuesday's, but a good cut at an expensive restaurant, one would expect the chef to know how to cook it. Maybe we'll just go somewhere with lighter fare and then make a stop by Leonard's (World Famous Malasadas, in case you're wondering).

It's a half-day for my husband, but I'll believe it when he walks in the door. He looked so handsome when he left this morning. He had some class in which he had to wear his Class A's. I took a couple of pictures, and couldn't help but laugh at his serious, stern expression.

Once he gets home, I'm out the door! I'm running up to White House Black Market to return one of the dresses I ordered online. It'll probably be an exchange for something else, even though my husband might kill me, so in order to take the focus off whatever I may (most likely) get, I'm going to swing by Home Depot and get my husband the grill he mentioned that he wanted. **wink, wink** Then he can grill up some really good steaks! Here's how it might go:

Me, walking in the door later today: "Hey, honey! Can you come help me get something out of the Jeep?" then I plant a big kiss on him.

Bruce, walks out to Jeep, sees the grill, gets excited and says "Cool! Thank you, sweetheart!"

Me, pulling the White House Black Market bag out of front seat: "No problem! You deserve it! I hope you don't mind that I exchanged that dress for ... (fill in item of clothing)"

Hopefully, he'll be so distracted/happy about the grill that he says something along the lines of "I bet that will look great on you. Mind? Heck no... you're worth it!"

I believe in positive thinking. If it doesn't go according to plan, then I'll have to resort to "Ok, you're right, sweetie... we should probably return BOTH the grill and my (fill in the blank). Who really wants to eat a good steak anyway?" Then I'm sure things will be back on track.

I'm wicked, I know.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

It's got a nice ring to it....

After two glasses of wine, this is all I have to say. Life is short. Wine is good. People are crazy.

OK... I'll elaborate a little more. My house is a wreck. We've been in our new home for two weeks and boxes are still everywhere. I think my expectations were set a little too high as I thought I'd have everything in it's place by now. Hell, it took me four days to simply get the kitchen done. That's about the time I lost my momentum. I found the coffee pot, though, and that was the highest priority. I'm still looking for my shower curtain. ARGHHHHHH! I've opened almost all the boxes, but it seems to be a futile search. Now, I didn't say I'd unpacked all those boxes, just that I'd opened them.

On a positive note: We bought a new couch and dining room set. One piece of the dining room set won't be here for another three weeks, but it's worth waiting for. It has a wine storage area. I like that. I've also bought several new rugs and a nice accent chair. The last two rugs for Alyssa's room and playroom came in today. So, all in all... I've got a mess.

My Jeep received a pretty large scratch on the driver's side about a week ago. Over six hundred dollars worth of damage. It seems as if someone said "Oh, F you and your new car" and then dug a key into the side. The guy from USAA said it wasn't a door "ding" or a shopping cart hit, that it was more than likely vandalism. Oh well, what can you do? From now on I'm going to park at the end of the lot and enjoy the walk. The only reason I didn't do this before is because I didn't want to be "obsessive" about it... it's ONLY a car. Yeah, now it's only more than $600 of damage.

I've found a babysitter so that Bruce and I can go out and celebrate our birthdays. We've decided to have two date nights within two weeks. This weekend we're going to dinner and next weekend we're going to see "John Carter". I'm really excited about the movie because Bruce and I started reading the books that it's based on. I'm about five books into the eleven book series. Let me tell you, Edgar Rice Burroughs was WAY ahead of his time. If you're interested, it's the Barsoom series. The first book is The Princess of Mars. The first five books are free on Kindle, as they are over 100 years old. So, anyway, we're going to see the movie. That'll be our "casual" date, while this weekend's dinner will be a dress-up evening. I'm going to find a nice place in Waikiki so that we can go for a walk on the beach afterwards.

Bruce already gave me my present. Here it is:

It's the one in the middle. I lub it. It's an Aquamarine surrounded by brown diamonds with clear diamonds on the band. He done good.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Two things a wicked woman will always do

Today I was checking out what search words people had typed in that ended up bringing them to my blog. I laughed out loud when I read "Two things a wicked woman will always do." What I found so funny about this is that someone actually needed to know. Whether they are trying to weed out a "wicked" woman from one who is not wicked by two specific behaviors or not, we'll never know (unless they happen to read this and feel like commenting), or the possibility that someone they know might be wicked and they're trying to find two specific charcteristics to back up what they already think about this person who may or may not be wicked. I will answer this question at the end, but first I need to give a little background to my answer. Thank goodness recent events provided such a clear cut answer.

I'm wicked. My dream last night only confirmed it. Seriously, I am not making this up. Last night I dreamed **let me interject here: please forgive my subconscious if I mention you in the details of my dream, it only means you are important enough to be in my dreams, and it probably means nothing anyway, but just in case it does mean something... you might want to grab a bible and straighten up if you want to get into heaven and are doing something that you are aware of that "heavenly" people don't do** so, anyway... last night I dreamed that I was with a random group of strangers in the street. I don't know what we were doing, but when I became aware of where I was water began filling up the streets. The odd thing was that it wasn't rising around the people and myself, but rather it was lifting us all up above this weird shaped wave. We were all actually on top of the water. I ended up being at the top of the wave (maybe I'm the wickedest) and all of a sudden a sort of cloudy apparition appeared in front and slightly above us. At first, people started saying it was a demon, but it didn't seem quite as menacing as I would imagine a demon to be. This apparition (for lack of a better word) seemed to form itself out of a dark, cloud-like mist into a face without clear features, but rather holes where the eyes, nose and mouth would be. The apparation then tells us something along the lines of: we aren't going straight to heaven, but the people who are have already been taken.

I look around as the wave rescinds and now it is dark and people are scattering. I walk over to a building that is sectioned off on the inside by partial walls. People are taking seats in pews. I notice that there are a lot of people. Actually most of them I knew. They are all sitting together in the same groups as I knew them in real life. The friends from early childhood, middle school, high school, college, and people since then are all grouped respectively. As I walked along the outside wall of long pews (yes, I realize it seems church-like, but it wasn't a church) I am really surprised to see two girls that I went to elementary school with. I thought "Wow, I NEVER thought THEY would be here. I always thought those two girls were so shy and sweet." But there they were, never the less. So, I kept walking towards the back of the room, looking for someone I knew well enough to sit with. Low and behold, there's Kim. My very best friend of almost 23 years. She was about to sit with some girls from high school, and I was trying to get her attention because I didn't want to sit there for some reason. She sees me and we both keep walking towards the back of the room. We then walk into another section that's divided off from the previous room, and we take a seat together. Now this room is almost empty. Then Jennifer walks up. She's my other bestie of about 21 years. She'd dressed to the nines. Of course she's going to look fabulous, she can't help it. I am surprised that they are both there. At the same time, I'm relieved. (Now what does that say about  my selfishness???) Then we "hear" the explanation of why we are all there. It was a very formal lecture, yet it wasn't fire and brimstone. I can't remember exactly what was said, but the gist of it was that we weren't bad enough to go to hell, but we weren't good enough to get into heaven. We had to "serve" four years. I don't know what we were supposed to do during this time, but I remember being bored. Actually, I was emotionless, with the exception of the content feeling I have with being around Kim and Jennifer. To admit to this now really makes me feel guilty. Because I would like to think that if I really did experience this, that I would have the common sense to be a little more interested in what was going on, and not act so blase about it. I mean, it was really as if I was in school, and the teacher was going over something that I already knew. Yeah, I get the Fruedian link to that message too. It's not lost on me.

Anyway, this is where it gets ironic. Bruce walks up. Funny thing was, I hadn't thought about him before he walked up. It's not like I was walking around thinking "Where's Bruce?" or "Oh he must've 'left' already.", it's just that he hadn't entered my subconscious until that point. So, he walks up to us (Jennifer is still standing in front of Kim and I, who are sitting) and he sits beside me and says "Hey, I found a book, that gives shortcuts of how to get this done in two years." I looked at him and said "REALLY?", but honestly I was thinking "Ugh. I have to put effort into this." What's ironic about him finding a book with shortcuts is that the man does not read. In the years that we've been together he's read about three books. It's just not his thing. But this past weekend he starts reading the first book of an entire series (The Princess of Mars) and now he's already onto the second book. Maybe this IS a premonition.

So, it seems I'm wicked for sure. I knew this. I claimed it. And I'll probably end up doing years for it. At least, if my dream is a premonition, I'll be with some of my favorite people. Now to answer the question: Two things a wicked woman will always do... here it is.
#1. A wicked woman will be bored with the idea of purgatory.
#2. A wicked woman will be relieved that all her favorite people won't be going directly to heaven.

I'm off to bed now. First, though, I'm going to talk to my non-practicing Catholic husband on how to do a hail Mary. It might help, who knows?

Monday, February 20, 2012

Thar' she bloooows..... or not.

I just love a Monday that doesn't feel like Monday. It's like an extra Sunday, or the Sunday that follows two Saturdays. LOL... Or, just keep it simple... it's a four day weekend.

We went on a whale watching excursion on Saturday with some friends, but we didn't see any whales. The captain came over the speakers at one point, saying they had spotted one on their radar/sonar, but it never surfaced. I was a little disappointed, but they gave us vouchers to come again on another day. The day was beautiful and the water was mesmerizing. I really enjoyed just being on the boat. It was extremely windy, though, as you can see in these pictures:

 Look at Bruce's hair blowing all over the place.

 Me on a boat, and I'm wearing flippity floppies.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

C'mere and gimme some sugah!!!

Tomorrow is kissy, kissy, smoochy, smoochy day. We have nothing exciting planned but I'm just happy Bruce is simply here for it. Last year was pretty lonely with him 6,500 miles away. Thank goodness that's over with! I gave him his Valentine's present early since he gave me mine last weekend. (The Valentine's Ruby Red Jeep, just in case you forgot.) Oh, he milked it, too. I was going to wait until tomorrow to give it to him, but as soon as I picked the package up from UPS he started begging. Well, as close to begging as he gets. So, now he's the proud owner of some sort of Motorola Elite bluetooth thingy. He gave me a couple of options to pick from. All I had to do was choose one and order it. We make it easy on each other like that and it always works out well.

I've got a cute little gift for Alyssa. It's more of a package, though. There's a cup with hearts all over it, with her name on one side and the Hawaiian equivalent of her name on the other side... which is Lani, and it means "Noble". Also in the bag are little items such as animal crackers, washable markers, a curly straw, a tiny slinky, and even some chocolates. She's going to love it!

We went shopping this past weekend to find Alyssa some shoes. We didn't have much luck, but did find one pair. I've got to find some better shopping places, considering I paid $10 for a pair of flippity floppies. Then today I bought her a pair of tennis shoes at Target that cost $22. This is unheard of for me, seeing as I rarely ever spend that much on a pair for myself. I should have thought that one out first, so it's nobody's fault but my own. I "thought" I'd just try a pair on her to see what size she's in now, but once she saw the pink, purple, and silver hearts, it was all over with. She was in love. Needless to say, I'll be finding that Ross that I saw when we were driving around one day.

Have a Happy Valentine's Day! Go find someone you can smoochy, smoochy, kissy, kissy with... and if you're married then your spouse would be the smartest choice. **wink**

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Want to play with my golfball?

I learned something new yesterday. It seems that here in Hawaii, if someone approaches you and asks if you want to play with their golf ball they're really asking if you have, or want to buy, ICE. I'm not exactly sure what ICE is (other than the obvious that it's a drug) but Bruce tells me it's been around awhile. So beware... but, I'm imagining there will be some sort of tip-off before the question anyway. Which makes me realize I need to find out the gun regulations.

It was Girl's Night Out last night. Oh, I had such a great time! Although, at one point we thought there would be a total of seven of us, it ended up being a group of four. Two Navy wives, one Marine wife, and myself... the Army wife. We laughed enough for seven though. We went to The Chart House in Waikiki and had a great table with a view of the water. Fireworks started going off halfway through our meal, and just like little kids, we were riveted. Two of the girls I already "knew" from a website I've been on a while. One of those I met in person last weekend, and one girl was completely new to me. The "new" girl was from TN, too, and a complete charmer. We enjoyed a great meal and four hours of conversation without a lull the entire time. We spent almost another hour chatting in the car when we got to our meeting spot. I needed that. The last time I had a girl's night was when Heather and the Hotlanta Hottie and I got together... and I believe that's simply too long between girl's nights out. Bruce said I should do this more often so that I can find the good restaurants before he and I go out. OK, no need to twist my arm.

****************Gripe & Moan Section*******************
*************** Feel free to stop reading.******************

I had a biopsy on Thursday. It'll be up to two weeks before I get the results. I told Bruce this morning that if I were a horse then someone would've already put me down. I'm now dealing with some pretty intense jaw pain too, up by my ear. I can't yawn or open my mouth wide enough to put food in it without having eye-flinching pain. This is not good because I like to yawn and eat several times a day. I'll be making an appointment Monday morning. I go in next week to have my blood levels checked for a supplement they have me on, and to have the stitches removed. I'm scared the doctor will not take me seriously considering I have so many physical issues going on. Jaw pain, joint pains that seem to vary in intensity and location, a rash that's slowly, yet consistently spreading to every part of my body since September, the pain under my arm from the botched reconstructive surgery, and my on-and-off neck pain. Oh, not to forget the weird things on my jawline that are not acne- as it is on the rest of my face- and the fact that I could give a grown man a run for his money with the lovely facial hair I seem to be growing. Ugh. If it weren't for the fact that I have such a wonderful, sweet and supportive husband, an adorable daughter that brings me joy everyday, I honestly don't know what I would do. When I'm with them, I can put several of these things out of my mind (except the pain), but as soon as I step out of the shower and start my routine of covering/hiding all the crap on my skin from literally head to toe, it makes me mad and sad. I have to work to tell myself positive things such as "it'll be different in six months", "Just smile. Nobody will notice them as much as you do", or "I'll find a doctor that will actually take the time to try to figure out how these things are connected." That's all I can do. And at least my husband tells me he honestly doesn't even "see" these things when he looks at me. He does see them, but says he just doesn't notice them because he loves me, and that his mind just seems to block it out. The only reason I believe him is because I've had friends with bad acne and it was the same for me. Their personalities out shined anything on their skin. I take some consolation in that, and just try to smile a lot more. Well, I guess that's more than enough whining... but I really wish I could scream at the doctors, "Please just take the time to consider these things are connected!!!" I'd had that appointment with a wonderful rhuematologist right before we moved here, and thought I was really on the right track to getting some answers, but I now realize it might be a long road here with new doctors. "RUB SOME DIRT IN IT, CLAIRE!!!", and I will. I ain't no quitter.

Monday, February 6, 2012

I may be technically homeless, but I've got a nice car...

I'm running on about 5 hours of sleep, which to some may seem all right, but for me it's not. I'm hoping the coffee beside me will persuade my eyes to come into complete focus. The reason for this is poor lil' Alyssa. She got sick last night and every time she made a sound I was immediately out of bed checking to see if she needed to be carried to the bathroom. I say 'carried' because she is so very rarely sick that she hasn't learned to get up an run for the bathroom. Bless her heart... she'd just throw up in bed if left to her own devices. So, I'd hear a sniff, followed by a cough, and I'd jump up just to make sure there wasn't anything else that was going to follow. She's set up on the couch now with a pillow and a snuggly blanket. I'm set up with the coffee.

Oh, I just had a thought that made me perk up! My new Jeep! **skies open up and angels begin singing** Yes, I have to brag here and get it all out of my system as I'm sure my friends and family are getting sick of me posting comments and pictures on Facebook. So here goes: I got a new Jeep!!! It's bee-yu-tee-full. I had no intention of getting a new one when we decided we were going to need another vehicle. I DID entertain the idea of buying a used 2011, though, but wasn't going to hold my breath. Bruce was saying he wanted a truck, too, so I had no inclination of what direction things were about to go. So anyway, on Saturday we went to the flea market at the Aloha Stadium but finished a lot earlier than we'd planned. I suggested we drive by the car lots then rather than waiting til Sunday. Long story short, we bought the Jeep that day. Now let me tell you about it. Actually, take a look at it, and then I"ll give details. Please forgive me for so blatantly bragging. I have never owned such a nice vehicle, and my husband floored me when he said "Let's get it. You deserve it, and it'll work into the budget." As if I thought I could love him anymore, he goes and says something like that. Well, here it is:

This is the new 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo upgraded with the Limited package. It's got soft leather bucket seats, dual zone climate control, voice-activated commands, keyless entry... and I can even start it without being in it! Cool, right? Just to make sure I don't hit anything, it's got a rear sensor and camera, so when I put it into reverse the 6.5 inch screen for the dash turns into a video of what's going on behind the vehicle. It has heated seats with a 12 point electronic thingy which basically allows me to move the seat everywhere but onto the street. It has a built-in Garmin, and it's bluetooth equipped too. So, if I need to make a call I just push a button on the steering wheel, the lady asks me who to call and I tell her and she puts the call through. If that's not spoiling me absolutely rotten then I don't know what would.  It has several other things but it's only the stuff that guys would think were cool.

The fact that this absolutely gorgeous, sweet, caring and generous man that I am married to would buy something like this for me and take the older Jeep just makes me feel loved. Very loved. I made sure I worked the sales guy down to the lowest possible price. We already had our financing taken care of, so I knew exactly what I was willing to pay. When we first started talking numbers, Nick (the salesguy) walked inside and came back out with a folded sheet of paper. When he showed it to me, I said "No. No to this and No to this.No, no, no." ((pointing at two separate numbers)) I told him that as much as I liked the Jeep, I was NOT into immediate gratification, and this was only the first day we were looking in person. I let him know that I was not even in da mood. I said "Now Nick, you know from our talking the last couple of hours what I am willing to pay. Going back and forth is not going to work. You either take $------, or we leave." He went in, came back out, and I then told him to knock another several thousand off it and to drop the idea of us doing financing through them. Once again, he went in, came back out, and I had to set him straight AGAIN. Poor thing... I know he doesn't make much of a profit once it drops below the MSRP, but a sale is a sale. Now I have me one fine ride. OH yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah.... **bobbing head**

Monday, January 30, 2012

A rainbow a day...

I'm in paradise. Now, don't hate 'cause it's not all perfect, but the weather is absolutely fabulous. Everytime I walk outside, there's a small part of me that braces for the rush of cold air because it IS January everywhere else in the world. Here though, on this beautiful island, it's an average high of 75 right now with average lows around 68. So, I am always surprised when the cold doesn't hit my skin, but rather a relaxing, balmy breeze. I don't think I'll ever take it for granted, even though I've heard people say "after three years you'll be ready to get off the island." Let's give it three years and I'll let you know. For now, I'm happy to wake up, walk outside, and more mornings than not, see a rainbow off our back patio.

It's been crazy since we've been here. Some days are lazy and relaxing, some are rushing around trying to get so many things done. Because of Bruce working during the days, and us only having one car (it's a rental) we can't really spread things out. This past weekend we were driving around trying to check out a lot of houses, even though we didn't want to move into any of them. We're choosing to live on base, but we still had to "aggressively" search out housing until we actually signed the paperwork saying we would accept the house they offered us. We did that today. I was a little hesitant because we agreed to take the house sight-unseen, but I'm trusting that it's the right thing for us. We have seen a clip on youtube, though,  where someone gave a tour of a house with basically the same floor plan, in the same area. It's new. Not brand new, but only one family has lived there before us. We should be ready to move in at the end of February. I just hope our household goods arriving coincide with the home being ready.

Our miniature tiger is with my girlfriend in Atlanta... AKA, the Hotlanta Hottie. She's a bleeding heart for animals, which definitely worked to my advantage. Not only is she just the most wonderful, sweet person you could imagine, but she also convienently lives very near a major airport. Sometimes things just work out, y'know... and in this case it couldn't have worked out better. Ginger (the mini-tiger) is having a blast with her new friend, Melvin, too. He's a long-haired tabby with the same coloring as her, and even though they didn't exactly mesh for the first two weeks, they are now napping together side-by-side. I was told today that Ginger is even allowing Melvin to clean her coat. Yep, that's my cat... she knows how to get things done. Speaking of getting things done, she had her FAVN bloodwork done today. EXPENSIVE, let me tell you. Since I chose to have to bloodwork overnighted to KSU, that was an extra forty bucks on top of everything. I hope that cat, at some level, knows how lucky she is! I am honestly having some slight panic attacks as I watch our savings drop at a drastic speed. It should, and I pray it does, be all reimbursed within the next month. I'm not gonna relax until that happens, though.

Well, it's time to go wake up Alyssa. Quiet time is over, with a capital O. Just as soon as I wake her up, it'll be a mile a minute of toddler talk. Ahhhh....well, it's not that bad, though. As a matter of fact, I really can't wait to hear what she has to say. I never had a clue as to how funny a three year old could be. She says things that literally make me laugh out loud. It's refreshing. Her topics of choice lately are giants and dragons. Let's hope she's not feeling like a dragon when I wake her up. Ta Ta for now.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

It's been a week

We've been here a full week now. Due to the Army's schedule of when they start in-processing and the fact there was a federal holiday yesterday, we were lucky enough to have Bruce all week. He's back to work today, but it sure was fun. We rented a car from last Wednesday through today and proceeded to drive around the entire island. I've already decided that my favorite beaches are in the south around Honolulu. Northshore was pretty too, but a little rocky. I've taken tons of pictures that I'm sure are going to start boring all my friends and family on Facebook. I'm thinking one set of waves is not going to look much different from another, at some point.

We had beautiful weather the entire week up until yesterday. It's been raining off and on. What's funny is that when we left here yesterday it was gloomy and sprinkling. By the time we reached the shore it was beautiful. I even got to see two rainbows! We stopped by a macadamia plantation and I picked up a few items by myself. Bruce wasn't as thrilled as I was to go in, so I just told him to wait with Alyssa in the car. Secretly, I was kind of relieved to go in by myself. My child has the tendency to be the bull in the china shop.... bless her heart. And it was nice to get 10 minutes to myself that didn't take place in a bathroom. So, anyway, I bought some black lava sea salt (it's black!), some cinnamon macadamia nuts, and a box of dark chocolate macadamia clusters.

I've been eating a lot of fish here. I'd never tried fish tacos before, but I've had them twice already. I've also tried poke, which is raw fish mixed with onions and greens. I loved it. I bought some real sushi yesterday and I plan on eating it for lunch today. When I say "real", I mean it's different than the stuff I used to buy at Publix with the imitation crab and shrimp. This stuff has real big chunks of raw fish. There's no denying it's SU-SHAY. Oh **sigh** I'm going to love eating over here.

Which makes me think of weight. Since Bruce has been home, I've been eating more than ever. It's been constant eating out, succumbing to desserts, and not always healthy options to pick from. I have no clue what the difference is from when he was not here to now, but what would've made me gain 10 pounds is having the opposite effect. I've actually lost three. Maybe it's all the happiness endorphins from having my husband under the same roof or being in such a beautiful environment. Either way, I was shocked when we bought a scale and I stepped on to see I'd lost. Normally, I wouldn't trust a new scale, but my jeans are loose and Bruce has gained two pounds. lol...

I am now the proud parent of a child who will not shut up. **rolling eyes** Speech delay? Well, let me tell you... delay over. She has, within a month, mastered the English language. OK, so maybe not "mastered" the entire thing, but with the attitude of her delivery, we understand 100%. Her words, about 80%. Also, I can't help but think "All right people, where the hell did this kid learn to roll her eyes at three years of age!" Oh, I bet it was from Cruella the drunk, off-duty, Delta flight attendant. Yeah, I forgot about that evil, eye-rolling chick. ;)~

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

If yesterday had only been caught on video, it may have even seemed humorous with a replay.

Let me start out by telling you that flying should be a reasonably pleasant experience. Barring the screaming child with ears that won’t pop, or having a person of larger size in the seat next to me and yet taking up my space, too…. I enjoy flying. Even after 30 or so flights, the novelty had not worn off. Take note of the past tense “had”.
I wrote the flight to South Korea off as a situational purgatory. I mean, really, who wants to fly non-stop fifteen hours with a two year old? Only a sadist, I say. But an eleven hour day of flying, which included two stops, and also a husband to help with the now three year old, I thought it would be fun. Um, not so much. Amazingly, my child was an angel throughout almost all of the day. We started our journey in the Augusta airport, which is tiny. All the people there were so nice. I guess it’s because they don’t seem deluged with crazy travelers, yet that’s where the first mistake occurred. They didn’t give my husband his boarding pass, just a small slip of paper that I guess they let passengers board with there. Not so in San Fransisco, as we were to find out later. So after I went through the security checkpoint with a family we had been chatting with on the flight, with Bruce following and holding Alyssa, he was re-ject-ed.  Oh! But wait, I’m getting ahead of myself here. Let me first tell you about Atlanta. In case you don’t know they board passengers with small children first, then the rest follow by section. We were the first to get on, along with the family I mentioned before. Even though all tickets were bought at the same time, they wouldn’t give Bruce a seat until we checked in. Go figure, but as I’m sure you can imagine where this is going, we had to do some charming, followed by threatening the passenger who was seated beside Alyssa and I. Now before you think I got all redneck with him, I didn’t. I just batted my eyelashes and asked if he was traveling by himself (yes) and if he would mind greatly switching seats with my husband so that we could all sit together. He was a big whiner. After listening to a two minute spiel about how he was flying ALL the way to Hawaii and didn’t feel like sitting anywhere else, I simply said “Oh, bless your heart… then I should forewarn you that my daughter is three and her ears have trouble popping, on top of being in that “three” stage, so if you’re looking for a calm flight, it might be to your advantage to switch… she’ll probably get a little ornery.” More whining from grown middle-aged man. Thankfully, there was a gentleman sitting in the row across from us who said “Sir, I had a window seat in row 35 that I am not using, please feel free to take it.” STILL more whining, but he moved. Seriously, he got to move to a window seat, NINE rows away from ALL the small children on the flight. I’d call that a generous offer. But you know…. Some people can really whine. Now stay with me here, I’m not done whining myself, lol. You see that wasn’t all that was going on during those first moments of boarding. All four families, including a total of six children had the opportunity to  hear this: “All children should be drowned at birth”. This came from the lovely, possibly drunk hag, that was an off-duty Delta flight attendant. I kid you not. Several of us just stood there in disbelief. The woman in the row behind me asked her for her name, to which she responded “WHY?” When asked if she was a flight attendant she said yes, but that she was off duty. Finally, she gave the name “Margaret”. Surprise, surprise... that wasn’t her real name. She gave her real name to a lovely young childless woman named Nadia, who took offense to what she said but buttered her up during conversation throughout the flight to get details about her…. Which when the plane landed in San Fransisco, she promptly approached us with and asked us to write Delta about her, too.
 At this point, we’ve had two connecting flights, had been told we’d were supposed to get a meal on the flight from Atlanta to Hawaii, but had yet to see anything other than seven mini pretzels, and been forced to listen to Cruella De Ville, the off-duty flight attendant rant about methods of killing the offspring of us "breeders."
This is where I need to refer to the San Francisco security checkpoint and the incident of being separated from my husband and child. Now, the TSA agents were only doing their job, which I think is necessary, and I applaud them for being thorough, it’s just hard to look at it like that when it’s happening to you or someone you’re with, and you have twenty minutes until take-off. Enter the charming TSA gentleman who saw me still standing in the check point area perplexed. The other military family we were sitting with stayed with me, which was really nice, and he approached us and asked if I had Bruce’s boarding pass by mistake, which I did not, but as soon as I mentioned he was military, the gentleman said he’d take care of it immediately and would return with my husband and child. About four minutes later, Bruce and Alyssa walked through the security checkpoint escorted by him. He was such a sweetheart.

OK, still not done getting out the poison here. On the final leg of our flight, thinking we were going to get a meal, we did not buy any food during the short layover, before boarding the same plane. The flight attendant had told me my daughter’s stuff would be fine left in the seat, so I left her bottle of water in the seat. Gone, when we got back. That is, of course, when Alyssa started begging for something to drink. That’s all I’d had! So, no big deal, I thought I’d just ask the flight attendant for some water, right? I pushed the button for the flight attendant. At that point we had 5 hours and 35 minutes remaining in the flight. When she came to ask us what we needed there was 3 hours and 5 minutes left in the flight. Yep, over a two hour wait. Thank goodness Alyssa had fallen asleep across our laps, because I can’t believe that Delta would consider that a reasonable amount of time before getting back to a passenger. Seriously people! I know the cost of gas is high, but when the tickets for three people cost around three thousand dollars, is it unreasonable to think you could get some damn water? Not to mention, this attendant was rude, deaf, and huge! She hit every single person going down the aisle. Every time I looked at her I couldn’t help but think of the stereotypical mean German nurse named Helga. She was so rude, I’m just going to leave it at that, but let me tell you, by the time we were asked if we wanted something to eat, they were all out of sandwiches and snack boxes. We got a fruit plate with two apple slices, three cheese slices, one strawberry, ten grapes, and two crackers. Alyssa ate most of that, and Bruce and I split an expensive “snack box” between the two of us. What I don’t understand is what the hell is the airline thinking? Are they trying to push people to the point of aggression by depriving them of water, while waiting for their blood sugar levels to plummet? I think it might be a ploy to garner public sympathy from those who do not fly, by creating these situations and then putting a PR spin on it as if “look how badly our attendants are treated.” I kept my mouth shut, kept a smile on my face, but inside I was cussing every attendant out with some of the dirtiest words of any known language. I know if my father knew what I was thinking he would still ground me even though I'm pushin’ forty.
Some positive points… I met two great Sara’s who are staying at the same military hotel as we are, with their families. We are now fifth on the housing list, which is a huge plus. A gallon of milk is only $4.81, which is actually good because I was scared it would be $6-7 a gallon. And finally, it's a beautiful day here in Hawaii, and I have a strong feeling I'm going to be saying that quite a lot over the next few years. I have more to write but this has been enough for one day, and the hotel's internet is about to literally drive me to the point of insanity. Maybe I need a nap.

Monday, January 2, 2012

You think you're busy? Read this....

It's wilder than a spider monkey jacked up on mountain dew here. There's a three year old running around who has discovered how to speak in full sentences. (And why was I rushing that? I forgot.) There's about seventeen half-finished lists in various spots throughout the house, and it's just getting started! Anyway, it's been a lot of fun and a lot of work. We drove to TN to visit some family the day after Christmas. That was the shortest trip we've ever made there. Drove down on Monday, left on Wednesday morning. My favorite part of the trip was Monday and Tuesday... lol. It was bittersweet though knowing that we aren't going to see our family and friends for a while... possible a very looong while.

To backtrack, Christmas was fantastic. Alyssa loved all her gifts from Santy Claus, and all her birthday gifts too. When I looked at everything under the tree, I thought "Wow... that's spoiling a kid." BUT, when I reminded myself that it was her birthday too, then it seemed reasonable. Also, this was a special Christmas since Bruce wasn't here last year. It was just a big celebration all the way 'round. He made her the most precious little "princess castle" birthday cake. It was a non-stop, but fun day.

New Year's was very relaxing and low-key. Oh, well... 34 minutes of the evening was at least until we crashed at 10pm. It was the anniversary of the night we met, too. I'm so pig-in-the-mud-happpy with this man that I don't even miss a big date night to celebrate. I'm just over the moon to have him home. Back to the business at hand...  We signed a contract with a rental manager to take care of renting out our home. The woman we decided to go with is a hoot. I think she's going to take good care of us. We also sold the Jeep Wrangler. All this in a six hour time span. And I mean from posting the car ad to it being loaded on a trailer, and signing all our paperwork and having a "For Lease" sign put in the front yard.

Yesterday we realized we needed some more luggage for our move to Hawaii. I checked online and decided we'd start with Kohl's and Target. Kohl's ended up having the best deals for the best luggage. It was BOGO free for all Samsonite luggage, plus I had a 20%  off coupon. It was an investment, but when it was all said and done, we paid about 40% of the original price for two large and two medium pieces of luggage. They're so nice. Four wheels, ultra-light, effortless movement. I don't know why, but it just thrills me that we now own some really, really good luggage. They've got a bluish sheen to them too. Just real purty, I tell ya.

The fun doesn't stop there! Today we're taking down all our Christmas decorations. Bruce is out now having the oil changed in our one remaining Jeep. **sniff, sniff**  Then tomorrow morning we're picking up a rental SUV and we're off to Atlanta! Ginger, the miniature tiger, is going to be roommates with my girlfriend Kimberly until she can be flown over to Hawaii, and we're dropping the Jeep off to be shipped overseas. Then turning around and driving back.

AND THEN... the packers will be here the next morning! Three days of watching them put everything in boxes, not to be seen for at least another month. I've got a hotel for us starting on the second day just in case they finish up early. Lord have mercy, this is a whirlwind. Somehow I have to work in three haircuts, highlighting my hair, picking up medical records, getting an extra insurance policy on the home, and not least of all... keeping little tater tot entertained through it all. Our final thing here will be to hop on a plane and hurry up and wait til we get there. I can already smell the breezes and taste the Mai Tai's.

So, 2011 is over.... thank you little baby Jesus... and we're on the brink of our next adventure.