Friday, October 23, 2009

It Must Be Love

I really love my husband and I appreciate everything he does not only for me, but for this country. He takes care of me, and treats me like a princess. He is my Edward Cullen. There really isn't anything I wouldn't do for him....and here's the proof.

For some people, there are certain things that go completely against the grain. For me, these are things like wearing two different socks together, using the word "ain't" in a sentence, going ALL DAY without checking my email, and - a big one - doing anything that may land me in the category labeled white trash.

Chris has been in the field for most of the last two weeks. He hasn't come in very often, like he usually does, so he's pretty tired. He is due to come in tonight...sometime. The boys were playing outside around 6:30 when they wanted to come in and I noticed that they were both unbearably filthy. I decided rather than wait until 7:00 for their bath like usual, I would just bathe them now, a little early. I had just gotten them in the bath when the following conversation took place via text message.

C: Is there any alcohol in the house?


C: Can you go get some? I really want a beer when I get home.

J: The boys are in the bath already...


I rolled my eyes. He was serious. You can imagine how thrilled I was to take my two children in their pajamas and tennis shoes to the liquor store on a Friday night to buy beer. That's on par with me taking a five month-old to Walmart to buy beer and diapers in a dry county in Arkansas. I sighed....I guess I could do this for him. After all, he has been out in the desert for the past two weeks, I guess a cold beer when he gets home isn't too much to ask.

So I got the boys out of the bath, got them dressed and told them we were going bye-bye. Aiden asks where we're going and we have this conversation:

A: "Mommy, where are we going?"

J: "We're going to the store."

A: "Why?"

J: "To get something for Daddy."

A: "What?"

J: "Something for Daddy, don't worry about it, just put your shoes on."

A: "It's too dark, Mommy. There's monsters outside."

J: "There are no monsters outside, Aiden. Put your shoes on."

A: "You killed the monsters, Mommy?"

J: Sigh..."Yes, I killed the monsters, now put your shoes on."

A: "Okay, what are we getting?"

J: "Aiden...we're getting something for Daddy. PUT YOUR SHOES ON."

Against all odds, we make it to the store. I was hoping it wouldn't be too busy yet. Of course, that hope was in vain. I sighed, yet again, and took the boys into the store. Perfect. There is a line of about 15 single soldiers at the register. I led the boys to the beer aisle and picked up a 12 pack of Bass. Chris of course can't drink Coors or Budweiser like everybody else. No, he has to have the imported beer. So I'm standing in line behind half the soldiers on post, holding my baby in one arm, the beer in the other, and Aiden is standing next to me. This isn't so bad, I thought. A few more minutes and I'll be out of here. Yeah...right. Aiden picked that moment to exclaim, very loudly, "Oh, we're getting Daddy his BEER?? Did he drink it all GONE?"

Oh. My. God. This is not happening. This is almost as bad as the time in Germany when a certain friend of mine whom I will simply call ROXANNE decided to announce at the top of her tipsy lungs in the Shoppette that I had forgotten to grab my Summer's Eve. It's okay, Roxxi...I love you.

Everyone turned to see the toddler who was buying the beer. Fantastic. Could this get any worse? Oh....yes, it can. The soldier in front of me (I assume he was trying to be friendly) asks Aiden, "oh, are you buying Daddy some beer? That's so nice!" Aiden replies, "Yeah, I get Daddy the beers. I get them out of the fridge when they're nice and cold. I take it to him in the living room." He says all of this in a chirpy little voice while I literally sunk into the floor. Why is it that Aiden can remember the ONE TIME he got a beer out of the fridge, but he can't remember how to count to 10, something we work on every day?

I survived my foray into the world of White Trash. I guess what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. All I can say is, my husband better not think for one second that I don't love him.

And he is going to owe me for this for 100 years.

Monday, October 19, 2009

America's Next Top Model

Okay, so I entered Jack in the Gap Casting Call, so please go vote for him!!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Itch

It occurred to me the other day that we are quickly approaching the one year mark here at Fort Irwin. It's already been over a year since I packed up and left Fort Benning in my dust, returning home to good ol' sunny Southern California. A lot of people dread coming to the desert, and hate it here, but I really do like it. I like the weather, I like the small-town, peaceful feel of our little post out here in the middle of nowhere, I like the fact that we are only a 2 hour drive from Orange County, and I like being back on the West Coast. I love that my hubby has been home with us for a year, and that, despite the monthly field rotations, he's actually home quite a lot. I like that we've been to Disneyland 5 times this year. I like my house, I like my new friends, and I'm excited to start my new business. Most of the time, I'm very content here.

And yet...sometimes I can't help but think of all the places I haven't been yet. I've never been one to just stay put. I took off for New Zealand at 17. I moved to South Korea at 20. We moved to Germany shortly after, and during our 4 years in Europe, I traveled my butt off. It's a huge world out there, and I can't imagine spending my entire life in one tiny corner of it.

And so, there are times I wish it was time to PCS. Chris has been in for 11 years this year, which means we only have 9 more years to travel the world on the government's dime! I want to live in Europe again. I want to live in Colorado. I want to live in Hawaii. Heck, I'll even go to Alaska, if that's what Uncle Sam asks of us. The idea of moving to a new place is so exciting!

People say you need to have roots, it's important to have something permanent. I tell them I do have roots, they just aren't physical. My family will always be my family, no matter where I live. My friends will always be my friends. My memories will always be my memories. And every few years, my memories come with a different backdrop.

I can feel myself getting itchy. Sometimes I daydream about the next place. What else is out there? Where can we go next? The world is a giant playground, and I want to play. I have a few top choices of places I'd like to go next, but when you boil it right down, I'll go pretty much anywhere.

Anywhere but Texas. :-)

Friday, October 16, 2009

Boys Will Be Boys

Proof that all my boys are crazy...:-)

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

10 Ways to Really Annoy an Army Wife

This was sent to me by a friend, and I thought it was too funny (not to mention very true!) the way, I added some of my own thoughts, as well....

1) As soon as you find out her husband is deployed take it upon yourself to tell her exactly how you feel about the war and how WE shouldn’t be over there.

WE? Are YOU over there, too?

2) Follow that up by asking how she feels about the President.

Oh...don't get me started....

3) Look surprised and say, “I don’t know how you do it, I could never LET my husband do that.”

That's funny, now that you mention it, I don't recall Uncle Sam calling me up and asking my permission...

) If she’s pregnant be sure and ask if the military is going to send her husband home for the birth.

I don't even know what to say to this one...

5) Tell her she should really consider getting additional life insurance since her husband has a good chance of getting killed.

Oh, don't worry, you as the tax-payer have already generously provided me with an excellent life insurance policy....

6) Remind her how lucky she is that her husband gets all that extra tax free money when he’s at war.

Hmmm...yeah. It does help to pay for all the babysitters and daycare that I have to get while I go to therapy....

7) Try to relate to her by saying you know just how she feels because your husband was out of town on business for a week last month. favorite one. One question: did your husband miss Christmas and/or your kids' birthdays while he was on his horribly long business trip? No? Then Shut Up.

8 ) Ask her how she can be faithful for a whole year and if she worries about her husband cheating on her.

Faithful for a whole year? I'm trying to be faithful for my whole marriage. Am I worried about him cheating on me? Not really, I'm more worried about him, you know, getting killed.

) Inquire on whether or not her husband has killed anyone.

Actually, yes. He's killed quite a few people. That's what he does, he's a highly trained, government contracted killer. Still want to come over for a BBQ?

10) Be sure to ask her when her husband comes home, if he’s done with the military or if he has to go back.

He comes home a year or more from when he left. No, he's not done with the military, it's kind of his job. Does he have to go back? I don't know, are they still killing each other in the Middle East? Yeah? Then probably....Besides, I wouldn't want to miss out on all that extra, tax-free money we're so lucky to get.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Real Men Wear Pink

My son Jack is 18 months old, has adorable curly blond hair, blue-green eyes and the sweetest disposition (most of the time). And, oh yeah, he LOVES Dora the Explorer. Most of you remember my son Aiden's obsession with Lightning McQueen? Well, Dora is Jack's Lightning.

I don't have a problem with this, but I DO have a problem with the whole marketing team for Dora. Why is everything PINK? Why is everything Dora aimed at little girls? The show itself is not "just for girls", I mean little boys benefit from all of her little adventures and Spanish lessons, too. And yeah, I know there's Diego but Jack doesn't like Diego. He likes Dora. I feel like they are just advancing the whole girls vs. boys stereotype - you can't like're a boy! Ugghh. It makes it really difficult when Jack's Dora Radar goes off in the store - and trust me that kid can spot Dora from a mile away - and I have to tell him, "sorry kid, but that's a dress."

I'm not going to dress my son in pink t-shirts, but I have made a few concessions. A Dora blanket that by some miracle is mostly yellow. Dora band-aids that both the boys think are "body art", a small plastic Dora doll (excuse me - action figure), and of course, lots of Dora movies that work wonders in the car.

When I was in Colorado earlier this month visiting my family, my Mom, Jack and I went to Target. I love the Dollar Aisle at Target, great deals. There is a whole bin of little kid socks for a dollar each. We find some Batman socks for Aiden (remind me to tell you THAT whole story later...), and Jack spots the inevitable Dora socks. They are pink. Jack doesn't care, he wants them, and he wants them now. Grandma snickers and gives in, saying something about how it's so great being the Grandma.

So now...we have pink Dora socks. Jack loves them so much that he literally will go and get them out of the dirty laundry and insist on wearing them again. Gross, I know. I was going to take a picture of him wearing them for you, but they are, surprise surprise, in the laundry. I had to bury them under several dirty towels so that he couldn't find them and bring them to me.

It's okay, he's just very secure in his masculinity...he can pull off pink with no problem. :-)

Friday, October 9, 2009

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time - Review

I said I was going to start trying to review the books I'm reading, so I'd better get started! I recently read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. It's told from the perspective of a fifteen year-old boy named Christopher, who has Autism. Christopher stumbles upon the dead body of his neighbor's dog and decides to investigate and find the murderer.

What follows is a very quirky story which paints an amazing picture of the autistic mind. At first I wasn't sure I was going to like it, it's rather disjointed and tends to jump from one subject to another with total randomness. But this is how Christopher's mind works, and after a while it does start to make a weird kind of sense. The story quickly escalates from a childhood mystery to dealing with some very sad and heavy events that have taken place in Christopher's life. I don't want to give away any more of the plot - you might decide to read it for yourself.

I do recommend that you read it, as it's different from a lot of other fiction. A new and interesting point of view to consider is never a bad thing.

For next month our book club has chosen The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls.