Monday, July 25, 2005

Just a hello

I'm in the desert both figuratively and literally. My literal desert is the TriCities in Washington. It's hot but not humid like in DC so I can live with that. My figurative desert is that of fashion and beauty. My hair is chopped. I liken my hairdresser to Edward Scissorhands to give you a picture of the way she screwed up my dew. Also, I cannot find ONE suitable article of clothing for my upcoming reunion, which has occupied far too many of my thoughts and I am embarrased at that. I just want to have a good time but the only way I'm going to do that is if I am a fly on the wall at this point...sigh.

My husband leaves soon. It's not the same with out him...

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Thank you friends

Just wanted to thank everyone who sent Terry cards and gifts at the last minute last weekend. He thought it was so great to have things to look forward to over the next couple of weeks and when they get to wherever they are going. I hope it wasn't presumptuous of us to put a wish list up. Sending gifts is not something we expect, but several people asked what he needed so that's why we put the list up. (Cards and letters though, yeah, we expect that ;)

Anyway, THANK YOU for your support!

Narcissis' Kiss of Death

I had the worst day yesterday. Gabe and I had a day planned out. Asher was in daycare for several hours, I had a hair appointment and was excited to be looking fresh and fabulous for my trip and reunion. Instead I left the salon after four hours, with very short, very thinned, wet, half purple hair. It was the proverbial straw that sent me into hysteria on the phone with my friend.

All the stress of taking care of my house, traveling and thinking about Terry came out in one sobbing phone call. But I needed it. Today I'm still so upset about my hair I'm scaring myself. It's now dark black (Yes there is such a thing) but still way too short for me. She thinned it out (something I will NEVER let a hairdresser do to me again) so now I look like Ashley Simpson's evil twin with shorter hair or something. I'm hoping that when I get to Seattle I can find a colorist to at least lighten it up a bit. I'm so upset about it though! I feel ugly, just because of my hair. I never realized how important that part of looking good was or how important looking good was to ME.

The good news is I got another publication, a book review. Not paid but still good for my writing muscles and self esteem, which is on life support right now...

Friday, July 15, 2005


The belief in the possibility of a short decisive war appears to be one of the most ancient and dangerous of human illusions. -Robert Lynd, writer(1879-1949)

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Stay in the shallow end

Wow, that must have been awkward reading about someone's deep thoughts and self doubt. Entertaining though, no? Maybe you all feel better about yourselves now.."I thought I had problems..." :) So I'll try to keep it light since some of my readers are soldiers who probably need a good laugh more than psychobabble.

This isn't funny per se, but good gossip. My neighbor was babysitting for some friends of hers. She had her daughter and their daughters, 18 months and 8. Well their father is a cop and was in court as a witness, asked her to watch them for a couple of hours in the morning. Well that was at 10:30. She came over, very much on edge, at FOUR pm and asked to borrow Asher's car seat (strangely enough I've had several requests to borrow it in the past) so she could take the kids to pick up her OTHER child from cub scouts. She was really frantic and said it was the worst day. I offered to babysit the kids so she wouldn't have to worry about dragging all three of them just to pick up her son down the road. Oh, I already had my boys AND two of their friends over playing. So I had SEVEN kids in my house at one point yesterday. It was controlled chaos for about a half an hour. But let me back up. When she dropped her kids off she said she LOST HER JOB because she couldn't make it in to work because the guy had not picked up his kids and she didn't have contact information for either parent. I insisted that had to be wrong, she couldn't lose her job over this. Well it was true. The cop pulled up to pick up his kids at about 5:30 just a few minutes before she showed up. I forewarned him that she was pretty upset and that she got fired. (I couldn't help it I knew he was in for a tounge lashing. But he's a cop so he's probably used to it.) What's worse he didn't even seemed disturbed that I was watching his children. I don't even know the guy...Anyway, she was so pissed she didn't even say anything to him, just took her kids and went inside. It was just bizarre, like watching a car crash in slow motion. I wonder who will watch their kids this week...there's no way I'm going to offer!

Monday, July 11, 2005

Mind diving

My funny friend cursed me for the next hour. I've been in such deep thought about my life all day, her entry made it even worse, but in a good way. Sometimes, I'll call her Luanne, (in honor of my sisters), speaks unkindly to me as does my friend's Regina. She says, you're not pretty, you're fake, you have no original thoughts, you'll probably die early. Yes, Luanne can be very cruel and I just hope and pray to God I'm not breeding a little existential crisis in my own children. When I yell because I've had to ask ten times to hang up the Jedi cloak. When I yell because a baby is screaming because he doesn't know how to say, "This device is pinching me mommy, please remove it from my tender body." When I frown at my son's choice of clothes - and he sees it. When I comb his hair THAT way, instead of THIS way, the way his little mind wants it to be. When I just can't leave well enough alone so my baby butterflies can bloom. ARGGH! Who creates the bully in our brains? A lot of people. (Can we just blame the media? That's the easy way out.) I know it ain't God, but wow, how scary is it that all the voices around us are more powerful than The Almighty's?

So I've created, Olivia (another sister homage). She says, you are smart, you earned your master's degree. You are pretty, because you have a good spirit. You have at least two original thoughts; Gabriel and Asher, and no one could have done that better. And as for my life? Well another dear friend reminds me to live in the moment. Not in a bungee jumping, getting high, sky diving, Colin Farrell kind of way, but enjoying wherever you find yourself. Today, it's gorgeous outside. I just read a letter from my dear husband that made me cry - good tears. My boys love me and think I'm the only girl in the world. And my pink roses ARE blooming again, even though Luanne said they wouldn't. Humph.

Dreaming of a three bedroom mansion

Here's another article for you to read to get a picture of the housing market we live in. It's on the NYTimes website so you may have to sign in to read it. (But, psst, if you read my blog everyday this article will be available to you FOR FREE. No billionth password to remember or obnoxious emails in your inbox from yet another web subscription. You read my blog everyday, you don't have to subscribe to read my cheesy article links.)

Yesterday we paid a visit to the local cespool, a.k.a. the state waterpark. I used to love these places but yesterday I felt like bathing in bleach when we got home. I was watching every place we stepped for fear of being attacked by a used bandaid or toilet paper stuck to the ground. Not only was it disgusting, but there was very little supervision on the slides, kids were shoving and cutting in line and I thought Asher and I were goners for minute. This park also has about a billion rules. No food in the park. If you buy the overpriced food you can ONLY eat it under the scantily shaded area. (We snuck an orange in anyway, gasp!) Oh, and you can only buy pizza, nachos or ice cream. What about those of us who don't want to die of heart failure at 35? The one that really irked me was that no babies with SWIM diapers could be in ANY of the pools except the baby pool. Cute, but when I'm spending $30 to be there, I don't want to leave my seven year old to the mercy of the animal children trampling through the water so my baby can piddle around in a baby pool. There is a high level of parental distrust. They don't trust you to watch your kids, they don't trust you to throw your garbage out (I'm assuming that's the reason for the no food rule, that or the government really wants us to die early to avoid paying social security to us, not that it matters because their won't be any left anyway). Well, trust me, I wont' be going back there!

Saturday, July 09, 2005

A funny

Bubba Joe's first military assignment was to a military induction center, and, because he was a good talker, they assigned him the duty of advising new recruits about the government benefits, especially the GI insurance to which they were entitled. Before long the Captain in charge of the induction center began noticing that Bubba was getting a 99% sign up for the top GI insurance. This was odd, because it would cost these poor inductees nearly $30.00 per month more for their higher coverage than what the government was already granting. The Captain decided that he would sit in the back of the room and observe Bubba's sales pitch. Bubba Joe stood up before his latest group of inductees and stated, "If you have the normal GI insurance and go to Iraq and are killed, the government pays your beneficiary $6,000." "If you take out the supplemental GI insurance, which will cost you an additional $30.00 per month, the government pays your beneficiary $200,000." "Now," Bubba concluded, "which bunch do you think they're gonna send into combat first?"

So, as you may notice there is a wish list on my sidebar. Terry's been pretty specific about what he wants, and he's bought a lot of things on his own already, so here's what's left over that would make him a little more comfortable.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Checkmate, mom

Gabe taught me how to play chess. And beat me three times in a row. Once it only took him FIVE MOVES. I am so embarrased and proud, it's a weird mix of emotions let me tell you. He's been playing for a few months now and goes to this Chess Club at a library that's practically on the other side of the world. I'm hoping his handsome good looks balance out this love of chess and Star Wars fixation.

Don't lie to yourselves people, we all worry about our kids being the nerdy outcast. While yes, it is true that the nerds rule the world (Bill Gates) some of them end up emotional psychotics too. I want him to be well balanced and I think he's headed that way. He loves video games, but will sit and read for 30 minutes no problem (that's 29 minutes more than his peers). He doesn't care if his clothes are smelly and don't match, but he won't let me touch his hair once it's just right. He will still hug and kiss me on demand, but he can wield a lightsaber with the best jedi. Sigh. He's just perfect. Asher we can't tell yet, but he's pretty darn cute so I'm not worried. :)

Now, let's switch gears and talk about London's attack. My funny friend (see link on right side) talks briefly about this. I have so much anger when I see that. It's not like the people that are killed are soldiers, they're just average human beings on their way to make a dime to pay for their kids' college or mortgage, save for a vacation or volunteer in the community, hell even just going grocery shopping. It's so EVIL to harm innocent people like that, there must be a special place in hell for terrorists. And it does bring a tiny tiny bit of satisfaction to know that our family is working to get rid of these crazy extremists. But the cynical side of me knows that there's nothing you can do to stop someone who is willing to die for their cause. If they want to strap a bomb on their butts and drive into the middle of a city or ride the bus, whaddya gonna do? Identify them? How, without profiling or putting cities in a military state? I don't think about it most of the time. But living where we do, I definitely am more careful on days like yesterday.

Stranger than fiction

When I was give my epidural for Asher's birth, the doctor ordered Terry out of the room. He thought it was an option and said, "No thanks I'll wait here." The doctor looked at him and said, "That wasn't a question." So he stood outside the room and peeked in the window. Here's the true story why he was told to leave the room

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Hollywood and high school

I have a love/hate relationship with Hollywood gossip. I love it when they have drama because then I see that even the rich and famous have problems and heartaches, they get fat, and sick, and depressed just like the rest of us. I know that sounds horrible but since I don't know these people it's like they're not real. I hate it when I realize I'm taking in joy in someone else's pain, because that's just not human. I also cringe when I realize I've spent even $10 of my (husband's) hard earned money on verbal garbage and glossy photos of people I don't know.

Which is why I really need some work. I did finally get paid for an article I wrote a LOONNNNg time ago. That was very satisfying I have to say. I was all juiced up with motivation to finish a book review I started, and research a new topic, but after Terry leaves it takes me some time to climb out of the depression and get back to living my life.

Back to Hollywood. Here's an article I found rather sweet actually, because I hope other people take interest in adopting these poor babies too.

Finally, the high school reunion. Although I have mostly good memories of hs, I recently remembered that I made a few enemies and I really hope they don't show up. Do people still get into fights over nothing? I mean when you're NOT drinking? Ugh. I just hope MY friends show up.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Nip, Tuck, Click

Well, I don't know about you but I was getting bored of my blog so I gave it a makeover. What do you think? Anyway, blue is a much more appropriate color these days. I'm blue. The sky's blue. Terry's blue. It works.

We had a wonderful time seeing him though. Even though saying goodbye again was probably the most difficult thing we've ever had to do. The next time I see him, it will be after he's spent have a year in Iraq. Try to wrap your brain around that. But we made a lot of memories before he left.

Together again

Gabe waited until 2am to see Terry come home. He fell asleep but we woke him up.

StarWars birthday We celebrated Gabe's birthday early so Terry could be there.

Gabe got lots of Star Wars loot of course. We bought him a Razor scooter - all the rage in our neighborhood. He's even practiced jumping the thing, which there are official trick names for but I have no idea what they are. Scooters are the skateboards of today you know?

We also went to Six Flags and were completely drained from riding rollercoasters and playing in the water park.

Superman The Ride - How we learned to fly this weekend. LOVE rollercoasters!

Our little frog

There was a great Batman stunt show at Six Flags, very loud and manly for the boys. Asher loved it. Gabe said, "Batman looks funny. Why is his cape so small?" The first time Batman came out onto the set he was on his motorcycle and the cape looked like a shark took a big bite out of it and this tiny piece of fabric is flapping in the wind behind him. It was one of those, "The Emperor is wearing no clothes" moments.

Go Batman

The big finale of the weekend was the Nationals game aaaaaaaaand - we lost to the Mets. Yeah. I'm bad luck at baseball. Never seen my home team win. Ever. It's scary actually. Maybe I'll convert to a Yankees fan and go to a few games to even out the playing field. LOL.

Last night we had a Last Supper - leftovers and huge servings of Starbucks Fraps and Lattes :) We knew it was going to be a long night. We let Gabe stay up as long as he could and then made video tapes of Terry reading books to the boys and teaching Asher his colors and shapes. I was like, "Make a tape for me too!" Then we woke up at 6:30am and cried like babies as he drove away. Gosh. It was so so sad! You can't write this stuff!

Whenever I upload pictures to share with you all I am reminded of what a lovely family we have and that I am grateful for what we have today. Now. Not what we are working towards or wish our lives were like, what we have this moment. Two beautiful healthy boys who love their daddy and mommy. We are a tight family and what more could you really ask for?

Friday, July 01, 2005

What it takes to live well

I'm reading this article on Forbes, What it takes to live well, and I'm thinking, "yeah, what does it take?" I thought I kind of knew. We've always had a number in mind of where we'd cap out (with natural progression in careers, not counting on really really making it big in our fields), and now that number seems like just makin' it! Well, you have to read the article to see what some people define as "living well."

First of all, my idea was a house, five rooms, a big backyard, two cars not new but not more than a few years old. My kids don't need private school, we don't need a vacation home although a vacation every year is a must (maybe two), I want to eat out once a week in a nice place, buy clothes every month, and money to play with. Ok so I'm being vague but we're just starting out so I'm sure I'll think of ways to purge the green as we get older. Anyway, the article was a reality check. We're gonna have to make more than I thought or lower our standards, at least if we stick around this area! Although right now, all I want is to OWN a home. I don't care if it's three bed/one bath, I just want it to be ours. I don't want for anything, we have great health care, don't pay too many taxes (yet), and don't pay for school (well, we'll be paying for Terry's forEVER, but it's worth it.) So my dream sounds almost obsolete. I'm happy with what I have even though it would be great to have more. Here's a perfect example. I remember when we were in college and we could not buy ANYTHING extra. We were methodical about going out to dinner and a movie once a MONTH but nothing else really. Fast forward to today. This month I purchased a digital camera, framed Terry's law license, bought three good seats to see the Nationals, bought three round trip tickets to Seattle, professional photos of the boys and frames. Now, I know that probably makes some of my readers uncomfortable to read people talk about money, but I'm trying to make a point. My life has so much more financial flexibility that I feel rich! And then there are some of the people I've met who shed a new light on the subject. Overheard:
"We're bidding on this home in ..."
"Oh really. Is it a primary home or summer?"
"Oh it's a summer home."
I was like waah? I didn't realize that the people in my community (well sort of - our kids play on the same sports teams together) had that kind of lifestyle. But I think they're both doctors....

So, no judgements, merely curious at this whole idea of how rich is rich? what does it take to "live well"? etc. etc.

Terry is home!

So it goes without saying we are like Christmas morning over here. He came bearing gifts for the kids and Asher is warming up to him nicely. He'll have to leave on the fifth but we are just pretending he never has to go back.

I had another positive dream last night. (Read my friend's blog to see my other dream. I think it's a positive sign.)

I dreamt I met Lance Armstrong. He was making an appearance and I happened to be there. A tall stair structure jutting to the sky stood in the middle of this field. It was from the set of a movie he was working on ( I had a flashback of him filming a scene like it was from Jaws, in my dream. The stairs were a part of the boat, which they took out and used for the photo op) Someone said that anyone who wants to meet Lance should climb to the top of the stairs. I was too afraid so I stayed a the bottom. But when he came back down I grabbed a picture of my mother out of my wallet (which I don't actually have) and I showed it to him and we both started crying. It was like he saw all the pain and just KNEW. Then I asked him to take a picture with me and my mom's photograph. And then I woke up.

Middle of the class

So my high school reunion is coming up, and I'm going to be really honest and say that up until about 5 hours ago I was really excited to go. You know how we all (or maybe just me) daydream about an event we're looking forward to, what we'll wear, how our hair will look, who we'll talk to, etc. etc. Well, I was doing that for the reunion. But I went to check out the site that's tracking us down better than the U.S. on Bin "done gone with the wind" Laden, saw everyone's name who has sacrificed their first child to pay the fee, and I felt very very small. I realized, these people don't know me. I barely know the person I was ten years ago! I wasn't a wallflower but I wasn't the North Star either and that's like the worst position to be in, it's like the words indifferent or apathy. I even earned STRAIGHT C's one semester. I mean how average can you GET? (looking back I would say that was my cry for help to my parents to please give a crap about me. It worked. They told me to get my grades up or they would pull me out of school. Thanks guys. Threaten me with homeschool Siberia. Way to show you care.)


I did nothing in high school (besides make some VERY good friends and that is intangible). But really I did nothing to better myself or the world. It was like I just stood in the middle of the party smiling like an eager child, "They like me, they're including me" [creepy, electronic monkey banging cymbals together] ugh. I guess the truth is today I feel like the girl I wish I would have been there. Knowing myself better and what I want out of life, being a little less afraid, but not reckless, taking risks for goodness sake! (And knowing how to dress and do my hair wouldn't have hurt either.) So now I think about going to the reunion as going back to anonymity, apathy, nothingness. I don't think a single teacher would remember me. Can you believe that??? NOT ONE. I can only think of two names that I even remember. It's just too sad. So I'm trying to put on a happy face, hopefully see some people who I want to catch up with (and there are a couple) and maybe I'll be surprised...