Thursday, December 28, 2006

You've Come A Long Way, Baby!

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She Who Will Not Stand Still For A Picture, aka The Heiress, turns two today!

Happy Birthday, Granddaughter!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

It Just Gets Worse

I have been going crazy at work. I HATE being at the scale- it is such mindless work, a trained monkey could do it.

AND, to make everything So much better, I have an earworm. Remember that song by Engelbert Humperdink, "After the loving, I'm still in love with you"?

Elmer Fudd is singing it in my head.

So I sing you to sweep, afdah da wovin'
Wif a song I just wote yestaday

heh heh heh heh

Someone just shoot me.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006


For what, you might ask. There's a pretty simple answer to that.

I'm not exactly waiting for Christmas Day to get here. I have almost all my shopping done; what's left is last minute stocking stuffers and such, just a matter of getting to the store to finish up. Most of the wrapping is done; boxes are sent, (and opened on receipt, darn you Princess!) and I have just a little baking left to do.

But I am waiting. Waiting for the one moment that makes the Christmas season real for me. One year, it was paying for a young sailor's gas as he made his way from Great Lakes home, and he never knew who did it. Another year it was giving a kid bus fare at O'Hare. But this year, I haven't had my spark yet, and I wonder if once again, I'm not looking hard enough...or maybe too hard. I just want to feel that glow that comes from doing the random, the unexpected, the kind act for someone who least expects it.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Lost 'Em

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Yes, it is that time of year again when I am stuck by myself in Bedrock, on a different computer. So...I'll be checking in on y'all.

Friday, December 15, 2006

A Day at the Arsenal

We made our trip to Rock Island Arsenal yesterday to participate in the Wreaths Across America program, and it was nothing like I expected. The Arsenal is right in the middle of the Mississippi River, and as you drive in the main gate, the National cemetery is on your left. I had expected to see rows and rows of wreaths, but other than what families, had decorated with, that wasn’t the case. What Wreaths Across America had provided was six large wreaths for the five branches of the services and one for POW/MIA. I guess I had that picture of Arlington in my head and thought that Rock Island would look the same. In retrospect, it would be impossible to provide that many wreaths for all the National cemeteries. But, I was in no way disappointed by what we were about to do.

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There were many different service organizations gathering at the flagpole- Viet Nam Veterans if America, Mexican American Veterans Association, Korean War Veterans Association, American Legion and VFW. The local Civil Air Patrol and their cadets were organizing the event. I didn’t realize we even had that anymore!

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Representatives of every branch of service were lined up with a cadet behind their wreaths. The cemetery director and the commander of the Civil Air Patrol spoke, and then the wreaths were placed one at a time around the flag. The firing squad fired, and a bugler from Bugles Across America played taps. It was very nice.

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I wish there had been more people attending, but as this was the first time for Rock Island, I’m sure it will be better next year. We exchanged information with the Commander, and followed the 8th District Auxiliary President back to the Rock Island VFW Post for lunch. These folks couldn’t have been more gracious. That, above anything else, is what I love about service groups. The gal who is 8th District president didn’t know me from my years as 6th District president, but by the end of the day, we were best pals. We know the same people, we do the same work- hell, she even let me help clean up the kitchen with her after lunch!

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It was a great day and I look forward to doing this again next year.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

From The News

I read this from MSNBC about the woman who was bitten by a spider:

Pettey had surgery that removed 10 pounds of skin and flesh

FROM HER STOMACH!!!! Ladies, you know what this could mean for those of us with more womanly proportions??

Monday, December 11, 2006

A Proud Moment

I need to give a shout out to my son Young SGT. Your sister filled me in a little bit about the homebrew and the bathroom. Please post the whole story!! As a parent, I can't even begin the tell you the immense pride I am feeling right now!

Update: This exceeded all my expectations.

Not My Eye!

Let the trash talking begin!

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Friday, December 08, 2006

The Perfect Gift

I have found the perfect Christmas gift for T1G.

Wreaths Across America Update

I finally got to talk to someone at the Arsenal that knew about this program. Weird, this Lt. Col. they had listed as a contact person is not even in the directory! But I am nothing if not persistant, and reached the cemetery director this morning. He seemed VERY surprised at my offer to volunteer. He also said this is their first time doing this, and while he may not need me to put wreaths out, he would find something for me to do. Good enough! We chatted a little while; he asked if I was with a service organization. I said yes, but I was really more interested in helping as a military wife and mom. When I said that Old Sarge was retired from the Air Force, he asked if he would be able to come out and lay the Air Force wreath. Wow, what an honor!!! The Arsenal has Army, Marines and Seabees detachments, but no zoomies. OS has used all his vacation time already, but I see an illness in his future.

So, this is turning out to be an adventure!

What Was I Thinking?

The VFW’s annual Kids Christmas Party is this Sunday. I look forward to this every year, it’s a hoot. We have a bunch of different games for them to play. One is “ice fishing”- three big panels painted as a winter shoreline, and a box big enough to put someone inside as the fishing hole. Kids drop their line in the hole and reel in a present. Another biggie is the cakewalk. I thought cakewalks had gone the way of the dinosaur, but the kids love this. Old Sarge is in charge of this, and this year he has a helper, SPC Sara, who has been back from Iraq for a year now. Santa and Mrs. Claus will come and hand out presents.

And me? I am in charge of the craft table. Last year we made a lot of felt ornaments. I have learned my lesson, and this year I ordered NOTHING that involved any glue. I ordered different bracelets, necklaces, etc. for the kids to make for gifts, and we’ll be putting stickers and doing stamping on bags to put them in. Stuff like this:

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Cute, huh?

So maybe someone can tell me what in the name of all I hold Holy made me think that THIS was a good idea????

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Little tiny beads for little tiny fingers. When I opened the box to make sure I had everything I ordered and looked at these little packages full of seed pearls, I immediately had visions of Santa slipping and falling on little beads that were bouncing all over the floor. Maybe each kid will get a bowl to hold their crafting stuff in. And I will be stuck in Bifocal Hell for two hours.

Maybe next year I can sit in the ice pond.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Remembering Pearl Harbor

I have had the honor of knowing two Pearl Harbor Survivors. One, George O'Brien, left us last year, taken by Alzheimers. Before he died, George would always show up at the VFW for parades and events in his suit, wanting to march or participate. Even when he could no longer remember his way home, he would remember Pearl Harbor.

I first met this gentleman at a VFW event. From the Rockford Register Star:

LaVerne Lundstrom was a 23-year-old sailor on the USS Nevada on Dec. 7, 1941, when the first Japanese bombs began raining down on Pearl Harbor.

Sixty-five years later, the Machesney Park veteran can recall with ease specific details about that day — running to various battle stations, loading ammunition and escaping the ship.

He makes sure to attend Pearl Harbor memorial services each year and plans to mark the 65th anniversary by traveling to a ceremony at Chicago’s Navy Pier this morning.

“This day always brings back memories,” said Lundstrom, who is part of the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association because “it’s important to keep America alert as to this is what happened so people don’t forget.”

But as the years pass, taking with them an increasing number of Pearl Harbor survivors, a watershed moment in America’s history becomes less recognized, veterans say.

The next time I met him was at Rockford Memorial Hospital, with a wheelchair. He was pushing it. Mr. Lundstrom has been a volunteer at the hospital for longer than I have been alive. At 88, he is still there.

Greatest Generation indeed.

Of Interest to No One

I have been doing my Christmas shopping in bits and pieces, spending a little time after work each day running in and out of stores, before the commute home. Yesterday, as I was in the checkout line of my last store, I noticed a Christmas sock display. I don't need any more Christmas socks, but I may just have to go back and gets these for myself. Who knew I would find one of most profound analogies to my entire LIFE written on a pair of socks???

"Dear Santa, I can explain..."

Tuesday, December 05, 2006


I can't get Rush Limbaugh on the radio at work anymore-too many new conveyors, I think- but I used to listen everyday. I might not agree with everything he said, (he's a little liberal compared to me- heh) but his program was always interesting.

Was perusing through the transcripts at his webite this morning and found this. The caller was leaving for an extended desert vacation getaway soon and was telling Rush how people would tell him that they support the troops, but not the war. His comeback:

"I tell 'em that I'm there to keep the F in the VFW."

Godspeed, Dave from Conneticutt!

Because I Can

Every few days I’ll check Michelle Malkin’s website for her perspective on current events. She has a heartbreaker up at the moment. Remember PFC Joshua Sparling? He was the soldier last year at Walter Reed that received the hateful Christmas card wishing he would die in Iraq. Unfortunately, Joshua is still at Walter Reed and has had to undergo a leg amputation. This is his address:

Pfc. Joshua Sparling
c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center
6900 Georgia Avenue N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20307-5001

Please check out the link for the whole story and many other fine links as well, including Wreaths Across America. When AWTM first posted on this, I checked the website and there really wasn’t a National cemetery very near me to volunteer at. I checked again today and found that my future home

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has now been added to list of participating sites. And I have vacation days to use up. Why not help make it look like this?

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I’m calling Rock Island Arsenal right now for details.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Dug Out

A mere 14" of snow- pfft! Enough to keep me home on Friday, but not enough to dissuade the mighty hunter. Who got nothing the rest of the weekend, just so you know. I made cheesy potato soup and homemade bread for any stray hunter or snowplower that made their way to my front door.

What I DID get accomplished was pulling all the lights off my prelit Christmas tree. These things are crocks of shit; I don't know why they even market them. When we bought it last year, seven of the nine strands worked, and this was brand new! This year, after sitting undisturbed in the basement, only two of nine worked. Won't have to worry about it again, thought, those suckers are history.

And I got to spend lots of quality time with the granddaughter. Amazing how much she talks for not quite two. Like,"Mema, spilled milk" or"Mema, I pooped". Lovely. And who could pass up "who lives in a pineapple under the sea" for hours on end?