Thursday, May 31, 2007

Peas and Taychew

My little boy has learned the two greatest words that a child can learn, in my opinion - "please" and "thank you". Or in his case, "peas" and "taychew". I don't know when he learned them, he just started saying them one day.
"Aiden, say please,"

His favorite thing is to repeat thank you when you say it to him, particularly if he has brought you something, like, say, 6 rolls of paper towels that he got off of the table.
"Oh, thank you!"

He's starting to put words together, but he tends to drop syllables in the process. For instance, "MaMooPeas?" translates to - I think - "Mama movie please?" I'm pretty sure of this, since this phrase is always accompanied by him holding up one of his movies to watch, and pointing at the TV. So polite.

Then of course, there is his other favorite word, "MINE!!!" For some reason he doesn't have any trouble whatsover saying this one....

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Murphy's Law of Homeownership....

My dishwasher died on Saturday. It just quit for no apparent reason. In the middle of a cycle, no less. Chris checked the breaker, thinking that it must have just tripped the fuse. Nope, that wasn't it. So after several minutes of futile button pushing on the dishwasher itself, - I guess we both figured if we just pushed the start button 100 times, it would miraculously start working again - Chris resigned himself to the fact that he would have to pull it out from the wall. Usually this is a fairly simple procedure, but not in this case. First, we had to empty the dishwasher of all of it's half-cleaned dishes (and I don't run the dishwasher half full, either!), then we realized that since it quit mid-cycle, it was full of water. So that meant a bowl, a turkey baster and a small cup to slowly, very slowly, scoop out the water so it wouldn't end up all over the floor. Unlike when we replaced the water heater, but that's a story for another day....

So that was done and it was ready to come out. Now, those of you who are familiar with our house, you know that we tiled the kitchen/dining room floor when we moved in. Well, we thought that we had been smart and raised up the dishwasher to be level with the new floor. We did raise it up, but apparently not enough. It was stuck. Which meant that Chris had to break the two tiles in front of the dishwasher and remove them so that we could get it out.

So we finally got the dishwasher out. Chris looked at it and after about 30 minutes of tinkering with it and looking under panels and other mysterious man-things, he pronounced it dead. How he knows this, I don't know, but I know better than to question him about mechanical things. If he says it's dead, than it's dead. So my dishwasher is dead, and I have about 3 loads worth of dishes to do by hand now. Not exactly my favorite chore, but....oh well.

So, with the rather untimely death of an appliance, it's off to Best Buy. The only good thing about it is that it's Memorial Day, so everything was on sale. After pondering the selection for a good half-hour (Chris is saying it's a dishwasher, for crying out loud. Men just don't understand the importance of these things), I finally decide on the perfect dishwasher. It's a beautiful stainless steel contraption with all kinds of different cycles and a timer and a silverware basket on the door (saving room on the bottom), and it's on sale for much less than it normally goes for. so I tell the cute salesboy (notice I said boy.... how old do you have to be to work at Best Buy?) and he checks on it. They are out of stock, but they can order it. Sigh....bottom line, I don't get my dishwasher until Saturday. That's a week of doing the dishes by hand. Bummer. Oh well, at least I'm getting a new dishwasher so I really shouldn't complain. And thank goodness that it happened while Chris was still here, and not after he left. I'm sure all kinds of other things will break once he leaves, but hopefully the dishwasher will soldier on....

Saturday, May 26, 2007


We took Aiden to the pool today on post. Chris took him a couple of weeks ago and he had a lot of fun, so we decided to go again today. Let me tell you something - this child has absolutely zero fear of the water. He thinks he can swim all by himself and was constantly trying to swim off away from Chris. I'm not sure if this is a good thing, or a bad thing!

Most of you know that I am not a water person. Today was no exception. Our trip to the pool consisted mainly of Chris and Aiden in the pool, and me on the lounge chair catching some badly needed rays. But it wasn't all that relaxing. Chris was busy throwing Aiden up in the air and catching him (to Aiden's utter delight, of course) while I sat on the edge and had a nice. quiet heart attack. I think maybe these pool trips should be "Daddy-Son" days from now on! You can view all of the photos by clicking here, or use the link to the left. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Feeling Sentimental

Do you ever hear a song and it just instantly gets to you? You've never heard it before, but after hearing it just once, you immediately love it? What is it about music that does that? You may have noticed that I added a new slideshow at the bottom of the page, accompanied by a song called, "My Idea of Heaven" by Leigh Nash. I don't know why, but as soon as I heard this song, I loved it. That got me thinking about all of my favorite songs - Norah Jones' "Come Away with Me"; "Never an Easy Way", by Morcheeba; The Sundays' awesome version of the Stones' "Wild Horses", and of course the classic "The Way You Look Tonight", by the one and only Frank Sinatra. I realized that all of these songs have something in common, they are slow, they have a sentimental sound, and a touch of melancholy. I don't think that I'm a melancholy person by nature, but there is something about all of these songs that just gets me every time I hear them.

I love hearing about new music - what are your favorites?

Monday, May 21, 2007

Mine, Mine, MINE!!!

I think I gave God a chuckle this morning. Let me back up - I was at Target on Friday afternoon, and I was minding my own business in the lotion aisle when I heard a terrible commotion coming from across the way. I looked up and saw a lady with her little boy (who was probably a little older than Aiden), and this little one was throwing the worst fit I have ever seen. He was screaming and kicking and throwing things, it was just terrible. This poor lady. I thought to myself, I am so glad my kid doesn't act like that! Yeah.....

Monday mornings are not my favorite thing; doctor's appointments aren't either. So when I have to go to a doctor's appointment on Monday morning (at 8 am, no less), it's not a great way to start the week. I was taking Aiden in for a follow-up appt for his ears, and also to check and make sure that his Strep Throat had cleared up. So there we were, at the ENT clinic when Aiden decided he wanted to take everything out of my purse and put it on the floor. I decided that wasn't the best idea, and took my purse from him and zipped it closed. Well. That did not sit well with my little boy, and he proceeded to fling himself onto his back, roll around on the floor, kicking and screaming, "MINE! MINE! MINE!"

Wonderful. I wanted to just grab him and run out of the room. Or maybe throw him out of the nearest window. Since I had witnesses, I figured that might not be such a great idea. So I got down on the floor, grabbed his little head and said, in my best quietly threatening Mommy voice, "Aiden Christopher - you stop it right now." Amazingly enough, he did. He just looked at me with his little pouty face (the one that really gets to me), with tears in his eyes and said, "Mama?" And then he smiled. And he kept smiling, and then he giggled.

Now don't let him fool you. He knew exactly what he was doing. This kid is a master manipulator. He knew just what to do and say to completely dissolve my anger. How long can I remain mad at a toddler who is grinning at me and batting his little eyelashes? Not long at all, and he knew it. What's worse, the lady sitting next to me in the waiting room just laughed.

Okay, so maybe I won't throw him out the window.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Wait a MINUTE!!!

Something occurred to me today, as I was changing my son's diaper and wishing for the 50-millionth time that he was old enough to be potty-trained. Chris is leaving. He won't be back until Aiden is 3 years old. That means he is going to miss the potty-training. How did he arrange THAT??? We had a deal, Chris and I. We agreed that when we had children, he was going to take over potty-training for the boys, and I would handle the girls. Makes sense, right? Now what am I supposed to do? Uncle Sam has effectively shut down that plan.

While I am sure that Chris is secretly breathing a sigh of relief, I have to figure out how to teach my son something that I don't know to do myself. There is a reason girls sit down, it's much more sensible, not to mention cleaner. I've heard that a handful of Cheerios in the toilet is a good way to teach him to aim, but I really have no clue if that works. I don't have brothers, I don't know anything about this stuff!

Although - there may be some advantages to having my son toilet-trained solely by a woman. I'm having visions of a boy who actually knows how to put the seat down, make it into the toilet, and change the toilet paper roll all by himself. Hmmm....maybe this isn't such a bad thing after all. There won't be a man around to intrude on my brainwashing....

I know one thing - he had BETTER be here for the birds and the bees!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Here We Go Again....

For those of you who haven't heard, my hubby Chris is deploying again to Iraq. I've been lucky enough to have had him home for the past 2 years, and he was present for my entire pregnancy (our first) and the birth of our son, Aiden. So I really can't complain that he is leaving again.

He'll be leaving sometime at the end of the Summer, and will be gone for most likely 18 months. I know most of you are saying, "WHAT? 18 months??" Yep, 18 months. We could get lucky and end up with 15 months, but I'm not holding my breath.

This is not our first deployment, or our second, or even our third. This will be Chris' fourth deployment since joining the Army 9 years ago, so we are old hat at this by now! Things will definitely be different this time around, though. During his last deployment to Iraq, we lived in Germany, didn't have children, and I didn't have a job. So my 13 months by myself consisted pretty much of spontaneous trips to various European countries, lots of "girls nights" with all of my best friends (whose husbands were also deployed), and LOTS of sleeping til noon!

But this time will be different. For starters, we are Stateside. While I enjoy the shopping choices I have now, it's not as easy to take a quick jaunt to Venice or Croatia for a long weekend! We also have a toddler, for whom I will be Mommy and Daddy for the coming year and a half. I also work full-time, and my job keeps me pretty busy during the day. One thing that has remained the same, however, are my friends. I was lucky enough to have most of my closest friends move to Ft. Benning at the same time we did, so my support system is firmly in place!

It's going to be tough, being without him for so long, but long separations do have their benefits. I read an article recently about a DOD study that says the rate of divorce among the military is the same now as it was before the war, and soliders who have been deployed for long periods had a lower risk of divorce than soldiers who stayed home. No one can explain it, but I think I know the reason. When your loved one is gone for so long, and in harm's way every minute of every day, you realize really quick what's important. You remember why you love them, why you miss them, and why you chose to be with that person forever. All the petty, stupid stuff we tend to argue about just doesn't matter. That old saying - absence makes the heart grow fonder - has never been more true, in my opinion. We celebrated our 7th anniversary today, and we are stronger now than we were 7 years ago.

Anyway, I want this blog to be a window to the world of deployment for those of you who don't experience this on a regular basis, and for those of you that do, you are my moral support!
I will do my best to keep everyone updated on the latest news from "the sandbox", but keep in mind that a lot of what I know cannot be posted due to OPSEC (for those of you unfamiliar with the wonderful world of Army acronyms, that's "operational security"). I will tell you what I can, and do my very best to keep you informed.


I've decided to join the 21st century and start my own blog. I have so many people in my life - many of whom are in my Army family, but many of whom are not - that I wanted a place to put down my thoughts for all to see, and hopefully give those who are not physically close to me anymore a chance to see what is really going on! For those of you who are not Army-related (or military at all, for that matter), I hope this gives you some insight into the life of an Army Wife.