Army of Mom

So this is how liberty dies ... with thunderous applause.


All the men I wish I'd loved ... or done something with

Watching VH1 the other day and somehow I started thinking of men that I wouldn't kick out of bed. It is a pretty eclectic group of guys, too. I have a broad range of taste. Ooh, that could be taken out of context, but ok ... you get the idea.

Antonio Banderas
Ricky Martin
Harry Connick Jr.
Henry Rollins
Ben Affleck
Will Smith
Jared Leto
Collin Farrell (preferably with Jared Leto at the same time)
Brad Pitt
Orlando Bloom as he was in Pirates of the Carribean and/or LOTR
George Clooney
The Rock
Joaquin Phoenix
George Eads
Gary Duordan
Aragorn - ?
Mel Gibson
Patrick Stewart
Jonathan Frakes
Toby Keith
Kenny Chesney
Brad Paisley
Scott Bakula
Keith Hamilton Cobb
Josh Duhamel
Michael Dorn
Tom Cruise
Tom Hanks
Michael Keaton
Matthew Broderick
Jon Cryer
Charlie Sheen
Christian Slater
Billy Boyd
Hugh Jackman
LL Cool J
Harrison Ford
Sean Connery
Cary Elwes
Jackie Chan - surely the rumors about Asian men aren't true, are they?
That Minnesota Viking with the giant arms - Hovan
The late Pat Tillman
pretty much any of the knights of the round table in the King Arthur movie out this summer
Steve Burns
Kelsey Grammar

And, I'm sure there are many more ... these are just the men that jump to mind immediately.

Who did I leave off?

Who/what were you in a previous life?

Not that I believe in that crap, but it is funny to take these goofy little quizzes to see what it says. My parents would agree with this one. I have a wanderlust that is pretty insatiable. Within my first five years after graduating from college, I had lived in four different cities from East Texas to Oklahoma, then to West Texas and back to Central Texas before I finally ended up in North Texas. This the longest I've lived in one place since I have been an adult.

You were a vagabond in your previous life! You have
an insatiable wanderlust and can't seem to tell
why. In your last life, you traveled
extensively - whether it was for your line of
work, or for personal enjoyment, you now cannot
stand to be stationary. You'll never be happy
settling, and you'll always need to feel far
off. The world is indeed small for you.

What/who were you in your previous life?

Eww factor

I didn't bronze the children's shoes, but my mother has my brother's still. Pretty cute, to be honest. When I worked in newsrooms, the reporters and photogs teased me about my shrines to my son on my desk. I haven't worked in a newsroom since the second and third children have been born of there would have been giant montages of them around my desk. But, here is a nasty new trend that I hope dies soon. These sickos are saving their baby's umbilical cord in acrylic resin or even gold plating it.

Ewww. I have heard of people saving their kidney stones or gall stones and stuff, but don't put that crap on your desk.



We are going to have our first freeze of the season tonight. I guess that isn't a bad run of late fall if we can wait till Nov. 30 to Dec. 1 for our first cold snap of the season. My kids were all bundled up and even Little Bit didn't fret when I carried her this morning with a blanket around her legs. Usually she is fussing at me to put her down and let her walk, not today. I think even the 2-year-old knew better!

Funny how things bother me until something else smacks me upside the head to wake me up. I have a birthmark/mole, beauty mark, whatever you want to call it , but an ugly brown bump on my right cheek. It didn't show up till I was in college and I hate it, but because it is harmless, insurance won't pay to remove it. Little Bit calls it my booboo. I don't know what the deal is with it, but it has sprouted a new part of it and I've been battling with REALLY feeling sorry for myself over this insignificant small portion of my face. I'm just vain enough that it troubles me greatly, but not much I can do about it, so I try to ignore it. Today, though, it is bugging me.

Then, I get an email from a dear friend of mine. I never knew it, but her husband is adopted. He was removed from his home and bounced around foster homes till he was 3 and adopted by his parents. He is in a search now and may have located his birth mother. He isn't all that interested in her, but he had three brothers he has never known and that is who he wants to find. Amazing how my stupid mole doesn't bother me quite as much when I think about the butterflies in his stomach (and my friend's) at what it might be like to talk to this woman and discover so many things about his life and early childhood that he never knew. What a Christmas blessing it would be for him to find his brothers!

Off to freeze my keester off for a few more errands. One of the magazines I wrote for was supposed to print my story this month and I was getting more and more disappointed thinking it wasn't there because I was looking for it in the back of the magazine. I finally found it - close to the front! Whew! Made me feel better. Also lets me know a check should arrive in my mailbox shortly! Just in time for Christmas.


10,000 visitors

Pretty cool. Looks like I should hit 10,000 visits to my blog sometime tonight. As of 5:32 central time, I had 9,982 visits since I put the site meter on. Not too bad for my little piece of the Internet.

Thanks to all who keep coming back. I feel it is quite an accomplishment and I appreciate your visits - even you nasty old trolls! Maybe some of my niceness will rub off. Stop laughing. I really am a nice person.

Miracles of modern science

It was a month ago that I had my ganglion cyst removed and today I'm doing great with pretty much full range of motion, hanging up the enormous wreath on the front of the house.

Here is my Christmas tree of stockings. Guess who has the Vikings stocking? Hot Rod wanted it, but I told him that one is dad's. So, he chose the snowman. Pickle selected the Rudolph stocking. Little Bit gets Tigger and I'll take the Santa one, not that I ever get anything in my stocking. I wonder if Santa is trying to tell me something by getting nothing in my stocking each year. Hmm. The penguin at the top of the stocking tree has been one of my stockings since I was in high school.

Another Manic Monday

Haven't found my muse to blog about today. It is cold and rainy - AGAIN. I have plenty to do today, but don't want to do any of it. I'll have to kick start myself pretty soon.

We're going to be all soccered out this week. Army of Dad has a coaches' meeting tonight, practice tomorrow and Thursday and another coaches' meeting on Friday. Then, we play three games on Saturday. If the boys advance, we'll play in Sunday, too. Then, we are done with soccer till February.

I go back Tuesday for a repeat pap smear to see if the pre-cancerous cells were demolished with the cryosurgery a few months ago. Then, I'll go a whole two weeks more before I have any further procedures done. My bone spur surgery is set for Dec. 22. So, I'm trying to get lots of things done between now and then since I'll be off my feet for a while.

Off to get a sweatshirt on and fold up some laundry. Once Little Bit takes her nap, I'll start working on my next story assignment - better rub down the goose bumps. I'm writing about garden flags and banners this time.


The difference between men and women

A male friend of mine sent this to me a few years ago, but it defines men and women so well. I have these EXACT feelings sometimes while driving in the car with Army of Dad. I'm wondering, is he mad at me? Did I do something wrong? He sure is acting distant. When I can get his attention, I'll find out that he forgot to order some skid of something at work earlier that day and he is irritated with himself for leaving it over the weekend or something of the sort. Usually has nothing to do with me. *shrug* Women - learn from Martha's experiences below:

Let's say a guy named Fred is attracted to a woman named Martha. He asks her out to a movie; she accepts; they have a pretty good time. A few nights later he asks her out to dinner, and again they enjoy themselves.

They continue to see each other regularly, and after a while neither one of them is seeing anybody else. And then, one evening when they're driving home, a thought occurs to Martha, and, without really thinking,
she says it aloud: "Do you realize that, as of tonight, we've been seeing each other for exactly six months?"

And then there is silence in the car. To Martha, it seems like a very loud silence. She thinks to herself: gee whiz, I wonder if it bothers him that I said that. Maybe he's been feeling confined by our relationship; maybe he thinks I'm trying to push him into some kind of obligation that he doesn't want, or isn't sure of.

And Fred is thinking: Gosh. Six months.

And Martha is thinking: But, hey, I'm not so sure I want this kind of relationship, either. Sometimes I wish I had a little more space, so I'd have time to think about whether I really want us to keep going the way we are, moving steadily toward... I mean, where are we going? Are we just going to keep seeing each other at this level of intimacy? Are we heading toward marriage? Toward children? Toward a lifetime together? Am I ready for that level of commitment? Do I really even know this person?

And Fred is thinking: that means it was ...let's see... February when we started going out, which was right after I had the car at the dealer's, which means ... lemme check the odometer... Whoa! I'm way overdue for an oil change here.

And Martha is thinking: He's upset. I can see it on his face. Maybe I'm reading this completely wrong. Maybe he wants more from our relationship, more intimacy, more commitment; maybe he has sensed -even before I sensed it-that I was feeling some reservations. Yes, I bet that's it. That's why he's so reluctant to say anything about his own feelings. He's afraid of being rejected.

And Fred is thinking: And I'm gonna have them look at the transmission again. I don't care what those morons say, it's still not shifting right. And they better not try to blame it on the cold weather this time. What cold weather? It's 87 degrees out, and this thing is shifting like a garbage truck, and I paid those incompetent thieves $600.

And Martha is thinking: He's angry. And I don't blame him. I'd be angry, too. I feel so guilty, putting him through this, but I can't help the way I feel. I'm just not sure.

And Fred is thinking: They'll probably say it's only a 90-day warranty.......scumballs.

And Martha is thinking: Maybe I'm just too idealistic, waiting for a knight to come riding up on his white horse, when I'm sitting right next to a perfectly good person, a person I enjoy being with, a person I truly do care about, a person who seems to truly care about me. A person who is in pain because of my self-centered, schoolgirl romantic fantasy.

And Fred is thinking: Warranty? They want a warranty? I'll give them a warranty. I'll take their warranty and...

"Fred," Martha says aloud.

"What?" says Fred, startled.

"Please don't torture yourself like this," she says, her eyes beginning to brim with tears. "Maybe I should never have... Oh God, I feel so..." (She breaks down, sobbing.)

"What?" says Fred.

"I'm such a fool," Martha sobs. "I mean, I know there's no knight. I really know that. It's silly. There's no knight, and there's no horse."

"There's no horse?" says Fred.

"You think I'm a fool, don't you?" Martha says.

"No!" says Fred, glad to finally know the correct answer.

"It's just that ... it's that I... I need some time," Martha says.

(There is a 15-second pause while Fred, thinking as fast as he can, tries to come up with a safe response. Finally he comes up with one that he thinks might work.)

"Yes," he says. (Martha, deeply moved, touches his hand.)

"Oh, Fred, do you really feel that way?" she says.

"What way?" says Fred.

"That way about time," says Martha.

"Oh," says Fred. "Yes." (Martha turns to face him and gazes deeply into his eyes, causing him to become very nervous about what she might say next, especially if it involves a horse. At last she speaks.)

"Thank you, Fred," she says."

"Thank you," says Fred.

Then he takes her home, and she lies on her bed, a conflicted, tortured soul, and weeps until dawn, whereas when Fred gets back to his place, he opens a bag of Doritos, turns on the TV, and immediately becomes
deeply involved in a rerun of a tennis match between two Czechoslovakians he never heard of. A tiny voice in the far recesses of his mind tells him that something major was going on back there in the car, but he is
pretty sure there is no way he would ever understand what, and so he figures it's better if he doesn't think about it.

The next day Martha will call her closest friend, or perhaps two of them, and they will talk about this situation for six straight hours. In painstaking detail, they will analyze everything she said and everything he said, going over it time and time again, exploring every word, expression, and gesture for nuances of meaning, considering every possible ramification. They will continue to discuss this subject, off and on, for weeks, maybe months, never reaching any definite conclusions, but never getting bored with it, either.

Meanwhile, Fred, while playing racquetball one day with a mutual friend of his and Martha's, will pause just before serving, frown, and say: "Norm, did Martha ever own a horse?"

And that's the difference between men and women.

Football Sunday

It always seems weird to me on Sundays after Thanksgiving and there is no Cowboys game on TV. I'll probably watch the Texans play or I guess I'll keep putting up Christmas decorations.

I had seen Army of Dad voting on The Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year award yesterday and Sworn Enemy had a link to it today, so I thought I'd post it, too. We encourage you to vote for Pat Tillman. When you get to the SI link, there is a little picture box on the far left side under fan poll. You can scroll down those pictures until you see Tillman in his Cardinals uniform and then click on it and then you can vote. A vote for the USA Women's Softball Team would be good, too.

I've got allergies that are making me miserable. Ugh. I pulled out the Christmas videos, so now we have a new batch of shows to watch for the next month. Little Bit has selected Elmo Saves Christmas. Hot Rod has already watched the Veggie Tales' The Toy That Saved Christmas. We'll probably have a movie day here in a few minutes and watch the new Mickey Mouse DVD that is out. My mom got it for the kids. Army of Dad is going fishing with a buddy who got a new boat. It is going to be really cold out on that lake today!


Grumpy old troll

For those of you with preschoolers, you've heard Dora sing about the Grumpy Old Troll who lives under the bridge. All day long, I've been singing this catchy little diddy in my head. Wanna know why? Because someone somewhere must have labeled me as a prime target for all the small-minded moonbats with no family to love this holiday. On Thanksgiving and the following day, I anticipated very little blog traffic, but I actually had the best day I think I've ever had. So, some looney somewhere must have told all his little buddies to come visit this post from a few days ago. I had to delete most of the comments because they were just spewing hate and venom. But, I left the best example of why I call some lefties moonbats. This asshole couldn't come up with a good argument, so he resorted to threatening my family. Wow. Now THAT is going to persuade me to see his way of thinking.

I thought it would be appropriate to remind him of the shooters in our household and of Army of Dad's shooting skills. I mean, the man can shoot a little duck on the move. Hello. It is a small moving target. I'm hoping that conveyed accurately who is the greater danger between my household and this troll. Besides, AoD said he prefers shooting at silhouette targets over little moving critters. Something about the CHL qualifying target and all those years of shooting in the Army.

Speaking of trolls ... couldn't find the Grumpy Old Troll from Dora the Explorer, but this is a Christmas Troll.

See, I haven't lost my Christmas spirit. It just put a damper on it for a minute. Of course, it was pretty soon after Little Bit decided that it was a great time to have diarrhea when mom was short on funds AND diapers, too. How do they sense these things?

In honor of the Harry Potter POA release

A friend of ours attends SMU graduate school in the theater arts and this is a pic of he and his friends dressed up as Ronald Weasley, Lupen, Tonks, Hermione, and Wood the Quiddich Captain (from left to right) for Halloween this year. Our buddy is Ron.

I'm planning on sequestering Army of Dad tonight and popping some microwave popcorn, popping a beer for AoD and a Dr Pepper for me and watching our new DVD.

It's going to look a lot like Christmas

I started some Christmas decorating last night. We won't have our tree up for a couple of weeks because of paying bills this week and then next weekend we have the Tournament of Champions for Pickle's soccer team. So, there is an off chance we can get our tree on Dec. 5 if the team doesn't advance, but I'm counting on getting the tree on Dec. 11. The rest of the house will be full of Christmas cheer, so we won't miss the tree too much, I don't think. I've got the boxes out of the closet and started to sort through them. Each kiddo has a little tree in their rooms, so we'll spend some time decorating each of those this weekend. Should be fun.


Let's go fly a kite

Now I'm singing this catchy little Disney tune.

Hot Rod received this monster truck kite for his birthday earlier this year and we FINALLY got it out and up in the skies today.

Hot Rod was very excited!

Stinkerbelle enjoyed watching it fly.

Walking home from the field down the street after a successful kite flying excursion.

Blah, I'm stuffed

Well, we had a great Thanksgiving. Nice and peaceful. The pumpkin pie is almost gone, but I got the makings for another one this weekend.

Got up at O dark thirty this morning to take my mom shopping for my nephews and others she wanted to shop for. I got a few good gifts, too, while were out. But, despite fighting all the yahoos at Wal Mart and Target, we'll probably have to return the Mickey Mouse Christmas DVD because it isn't in good shape and Wal Mart overchraged for an item that was supposed to be at the bargain price if you went before the rooster crowed. So, we have to go back and get a refund or return it if they won't fix the price. Such is life.

AoD is going to get an oil change today. My mom and I are taking the little kids to the Parade of Lights tonight. Should be fun.



Army of Dad always buys one block in the company pool for the Cowboys games and we figured out that we've finished even each year he's done this or a little ahead.

Well, today ... we won $500! Woo hoo! AoD is threatening to only give me $50 of it, but hopefully I'll find a way to persuade him to give me more.

We're going to put the kids in bed and go see Alexander. It is nice to have my folks around for many reasons. :) It was great to see the Cowboys win for a change. Julius Jones kicked some ass today. Good thing I dropped in off my fantasy team earlier this year. *shaking my head*

Tomorrow, my mom wants to get up bright and early and go shopping. So, I'll be one of those psycho shoppers at Wal-Mart at 6 a.m. *yawn* We will probably take the kids to the Christmas parade and tree lighting in downtown Fort Worth tomorrow night. AoD would rather skip it. He doesn't enjoy that stuff too much.

Counting my blessings

There are so many blessings in my life that I'm sure I'll forget something, but here is the list that comes to mind (in no particular order).

1. Army of Dad
2. My three beautiful and healthy children
3. Child No. 1 is coming into his own and doing better in school, in life and with his peers
4. Having my health - fragile as it can be at times
5. That my lump wasn't malignant
6. For my incredible friends and family - you know who you are!
7. The fact that we don't have to worry about where our next meal will come from
8. Our home
9. Living in a free country
10. That Bush is president again

Growing up, I never really looked forward to Thanksgiving because of how stressed out my mom would get that everything be perfect. She would scream and holler and make everyone around her miserable. I found myself was like that, too, the first few years I did the meals that I was so flipped out that it wasn't even any fun. I have chosen to not worry about it anymore. I start preparing meals a day or two before and that has eased up on all the preparation worries so I can relax and enjoy myself.

Today is the first time that I've been able to interest one of my children to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade with me. I'm so happy about that. Hot Rod is sitting and watching it and I'm about to go sit with him. So much to be thankful for. I'm going to get out my Thankful journal that I'm creating for Little Bit. Every special occasion (unless I forget, which is more often than I'd like) I get my journal out and have all the guests at the event to write what they're thankful for. It is a wonderful collection of memories that I hope she treasures when she gets older.

God Bless Each of You and Happy Thanksgiving!

Tales of the turkey

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hopefully, you won't have any 0f these horror stories to tell for your turkey cooking duties today.

Courtesy of this Yahoo story, here are some turkey cooking help lines:
Butterball Turkey Talk Line: 1-800-288-8372
USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline: 1-800-535-4555
Perdue Consumer Help Line: 1-800-473-7383


I'm the stuffing

Many thanks to LabKat for this little diversion. I've been in the kitchen for the past four hours and my back is already killing me. Worst part is that I don't have THAT much done yet. But, it is a start.

You Are the Stuffing

You're complicated and complex, yet all your pieces fit together.
People miss you if you're gone - but they're not sure why.

Took Little Bit to the doctor this morning. No ear infection, which is good. Doctor said she may be uncomfortable because of the pressure from the congestion and to give her benadryl and tylenol. So, there we go. Chuck E. Cheese was actually fun, if you can believe it. The kids were really good and they had a ball. Cracked me up. Little Bit was calling Chuck E. ... Hey Cheese. Hi Cheese. Bye Cheese. Was funny.

Had a good conversation with my sister-in-law while I peeled sweet potatoes. Now, I have Army of Dad's spaghetti sauce simmering on the stove for dinner. Yummy.

Busy pre-Thanksgiving

The cooking will commence later today and should be fun with my splint on my arm. I've been trying to do a little at a time without the splint, but something as easy as feeding myself sends pain shooting into my shoulder from my muscles atrophying. Great. Oh well, at least it is healing nicely and the scar isn't nearly as bad as it looked like it would be.

Today is windy and cold and I have to get the two little ones out to run to the store for nutmeg. We ran out and I didn't know it and I need it for the pumpkin pie. Then, I have to go pick up some hunting permit from the city for Army of Dad. He owes me for this one, but he did make me a big pot of spaghetti sauce last night, so we have supper tonight.

I may be taking Little Bit to the doctor today, too. She has been congested and was feverish last night and told me this morning that her ears hurt. So, we're going to the pediatrician in about an hour. Just got the appointment. I'm planning on taking the kids to play and eat at Chuck E. Cheese today, too. Should be fun.

This afternoon, once it warms up a bit, I'll be out gathering up all of my potted plants from the front and back porch (which is a huge task because I love plants) and then I have to cover the faucets outside and I guess I'll wait till tonight to cover my baby tree (can't remember if it is peach or pear, peach I think) and then my pretty plants. I don't want them to freeze. Army of Dad will have to move the banana tree. Even without a beat-up arm, I couldn't do it.

I'll blog off and on today. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. I'm thankful for so much. I know I will blog about that.

Here is one thing I'm thankful for. Hot Rod had a Thanksgiving feast at school Tuesday. I went to help and hang out with him. The teacher asked each child what they were thankful for. My son, in all his wisdom, said he was thankful for ..... no, you guessed wrong, not his mom ... he was thankful for his dad. *rolling my eyes* Not that I'm surprised. He was also too cool to make a pilgrim hat.

He reminds me of Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes. He always makes goofy faces. Today he was giggling AGAIN about a baby shower. A few weeks ago, I helped host one for a friend and was making food and he asked me what I was cooking for. I told him I was helping with a baby shower. He fell down laughing so hard, then he mimicked a baby getting all wet in a shower and crying. I explained to him that it is about showering the mommy with baby gifts, but he really likes his interpretation better.


Christmas time, already

Well, Christmas in Texas often means short sleeved shirts, but this is a little early to see Santa, isn't it?

Pickle got to meet up with the North Pole's VIP resident on Saturday night while hanging out with Uzz at a shoot. I don't think he really believes in Santa any more, but I think he likes the idea of believing. Plus, he doesn't want to take a chance on not getting any gifts from him.

I love this man!

I'm sorry Laura and Army of Dad, but President Bush takes shit from no one. I heard about this yesterday, but just caught the video of the action. Maybe I'm not PC and all, but I love a man who kicks ass now and takes names later.

What do you bet that President Bush does NOT own a man purse.


I opened the front door this afternoon and saw dozens upon dozens of ladybugs. All different colors from a pale orange with no spots to bright red to everything in between. Some had spots and some didn't. They were flying into the house and making it hard for me to get them out without killing them. I've always heard they're good luck.

They are good to have around the house because ladybugs will eat aphids, which eat your plants. I'm not sure why so many are here right now, but it could be because of the weather change or because a storm moved them here.

But, they are pretty. With so much good luck, I think I ought to go buy a lottery ticket in the morning.

A teary kind of day

Today has been one filled with tears all day. I know that PMS must be hitting, because it has been a good day, just a lot of things have made me really sad. I woke up at 4:45 a.m. and that probably isn't helping. The kids were in good moods this morning and got to school ok. I got the cake baked last night and iced this morning and dropped it off at the school (the PTA was making cakes and pies for the teachers) on the way to taking Little Bit to preschool. It has been raining cats and dogs off on and on all day.

I drove my a church that has a food pantry for the needy and immediately felt like a pig because I was feeling sorry for myself for having to carry a cake and the baby in to the school with my recuperating arm - all in the rain. Then, I look at these people standing in the rain waiting to get some food. I was reminded that I simply worry about when and what, in particular, we will be eating later. I never have to worry about whether or not we will eat.

Then, I heard more about the crazy bitch who cut off her baby's arms and let it bleed to death while she sat on the couch listening to hymns. I know she has to be crazy because no mother would do that. But, this has ripped my heart apart. I suffered from post-partum depression and I remember wishing I could just die and not knowing why I felt so bad when things were so good in my life. But, I also remember thinking that I have to get better because my children need me. I sought help from a counselor and she helped me through it and I was fine in about three months with some cognitive behavioral therapy. Never - NEVER - did the thought of hurting my children come into the picture. Now, I'm sure this bitch isn't right, but I don't care. I would like to rip off her arms and douse her with Tabasco sauce. A baby. An innocent infant. I just keep picturing this baby fighting her while she cut her arms off. God help her.

Then, I heard The Good Stuff by Kenny Chesney and lost it all over again.

It is going to be one of those days. I'm off now for Thanksgiving lunch with Hot Rod at his school. He is SOOOO excited about getting some pumpkin pie. He has been asking for pumpkin pie for two weeks now. Every day. Several times a day. I may have to make two this year.
I wrote this post earlier and it wouldn't let me post ... hope it will now.


Nominate me, please

Thanks to Let's Try Freedom for reminding me about the 2004 Weblogs Awards. Nominate me, please.

My best begging face:

Psycho hunter

Psycho hunter went on a rampage and killed a bunch of people, just sniping from a deer stand that wasn't his.

I knew as soon as I heard the type of weapon this asshole used that whiney gun control people were going to start bitching about an assault weapons ban again. Hello, people. Listen to me and listen good, bad people are going to get their hands on weapons whether they are banned or not. At least if they are legal, then the good guys can be equally armed instead of at a deficit when trying to defend themselves.

Although, one question immediately came to mind when I heard about this - why didn't anyone get a good shot on this guy? Maybe he was camouflaged well in the deer stand? I don't know. I heard that the hunters did fire back, but this guy wasn't hit.

What do you think?

Maybe I'm too judgmental, but this story just doesn't seem right. This woman was evicted from her apartment and couldn't find room at the homeless shelter, so she moves into a storage unit. Ok, I can see that - but she has FOUR children and this unit has no water or bathroom facilities in it. She took her two oldest kids to school and left a 4-year-old and 5-year-old alone locked in this storage unit while she went to work.

I guess I should be glad she is working and not sucking off the government tit, but aren't welfare and social services designed to help people like her? Shouldn't the homeless shelter social worker have made some effort to call a church or find someone who could help her? I thank God every day that I have friends and family that would not let this happen to me. Must be sad, but still doesn't excuse leaving two little kids alone in a cold, dark and probably unsanitary storage shelter.


Don't tell anyone, but I bought the Oprah magazine the other day and I actually like it. I thought Army of Dad was going to pop a blood vessel when he saw it. I'm sorry, but she is a phenom and knows her market - women like me!

Rainy day Monday

This is sort of a blah day. It is Monday and it is pouring down with rain. I have an international call to make in about 30 minutes for a story I'm writing about a garden center in England. I hope to make that brief since I don't think it is part of my long distance calling included on my phone plan. Yikes.

I have a press release to email out to the Denver area media and some national music pubs, too. I wrote about Fawn's Records and a new CD the company released. This CD is designed for animal lovers and carries a spiritual message as well. The producer hopes to sell enough CDs to help fund a no-kill animal sanctuary in Colorado. Today, I will be pitching the story to the media. Wish me luck. I also have to write that garden center story, too.

So much for my pre-Thanksgiving preparation. I will get to some of that tomorrow. Tonight, I have to make a cake to take to school tomorrow. The PTA is making cakes and pies to give to the teachers for their Thanksgiving meals. The goal is to tell them thank you while helping them have one less thing to do for the holiday meal. I got to share with Hot Rod this morning about the origins of Thanksgiving. And, of course, the holidays in general make me tear up with emotions because I have so much to be thankful for. Add to that the creepy PMS-onset feeling. Lovely. What a great time. But, I digress. I explained to him about the pilgrims and how they created Thanksgiving and how we honor it as a time to be thankful for all of our blessings. I think he gets it, too.

Today is also the anniversary of JFK's shooting. Having grown up in the Metroplex where it happened, it has always carried a little heavier weight here. JFK went to Fort Worth for breakfast that fateful morning before he departed for his excursion into Dallas. One of my reporter buddies regaled me with a great motto for a T-shirt for Fort Worth natives "He was fine when he left here." Still makes me crack up to this day. Us reporters and newspaper types are ever so sensitive. hee hee


Spongebob Squarepants - The Experience

In the immortal words of Spongebob Squarepants:

I'm ready! I'm ready! I'm ready!

It was SOOOOO much fun. I took Hot Rod to see the Spongebob movie this afternoon.

What was up with Patrick and the fishnet hose? Wow. I tried to find a picture to post, but couldn't locate one. Funny, though.

Working hard

Uzz went to Pickle's school Friday, too, for parent involvement day. He caught the kiddo hard at work. He made the B honor roll in the second six weeks. Not too bad.

Fun fun fun at Dave and Buster's

We enjoyed a grown-up's return to childhood with a birthday party at Dave and Buster's for my best friend from childhood. She is the one in the center (her designation is 1 of 5) and is now 35. The other gal is her cousin and another of my childhood friends.

This is BF with her husband. They are Hot Rod's godparents.

And, here is me and Army of Dad.

We had great fun playing games like kids. AoD and I enjoyed a rousing gave of Voyager. We got to shoot the Borg, the Hirogens and Species 8472 along with a few other strange aliens. I got to pilot the Delta Flyer, too. It was so much fun. But, I laughed till I almost wet my pants when 1 of 5 and I tried to get on one of those dancing machines where you step on the pads as you try to follow the dance move arrows. We sucked at it. It was hilarious. Then, us girls got in one of those photo booths where it draws your picture and we turned into giggling 13-year-olds again.

Mmmm, chocolate

Little Bit enjoyed (can't you tell?) a chocolate glazed donut with sprinkles for breakfast this morning. She looked like she dove into a vat of chocolate! Her hands were covered up to their elbows! We showed her in the mirror before we cleaned it off and she said "GWOSS!" (that is baby speak for gross, if you didn't know!)

Bon appetit!


Why is having fun so hard?


I didn't even drink last night and I feel hungover from staying up WAY TOO LATE! I went to a slumber party with a bunch of my girlfriends. There was lots of liquor but I refrained because I figured I would drive home and not crash in the floor with a bunch of other women. We had a hot tub, lots of food and party games. It was a blast. One of my buddies and I sat and people watched much of the night and it was pretty fun. Someone decided they wanted pizza and thought it would be funny to be nude when they greeted the deliveryman. So, three of the more attractive gals got naked and met the little foreign man at the door. He appreciated that tip and just kept saying (in broken english) "you very beautiful" over and over. What was even funnier was he returned about five minutes later and brought them a two-liter of Pepsi. He just wanted one more look. I was in stitches.

But, leaving the other side of the Metroplex at 2 a.m. makes for a long drive home. Feeling particularly randy when I returned, I was going to wake up Army of Dad. I slipped under the cover, reached in with my hand and felt a 5-year-old's torso. *sigh* Foiled again.

Army of Dad was a beautiful human being this morning. Shhh, don't tell anyone. He let me sleep in and made pancakes for the kids and then even cooked me some peasant potatoes. Now, he is off to soccer practice. We have a birthday party tonight - a grown up birthday party. Should be fun.


Parental involvement day

Today was parent involvement day at the boys's school. So, Stinkerbelle and I went to hang out with them during lunch. Hot Rod was very happy to get some pumpkin pie. Big Brother enjoyed a big helping of mashed potatoes. Little Bit had some whale crackers. I mooched off Big Brother's plate for the stuffing and gravy, which he doesn't eat. Psycho kid! It was also patriotic day. The kids were asked to wear red, white and blue.

Mother of the year candidate - NOT

Sometimes I feel pretty good about my parenting skills, especially when I hear about stories like this one.

This mother, and I use that term loosely here, gave her 2-year-old some Tylenol and put him down for a nap after he was accidentally SHOT by a relative. Yes, you read that right - he was shot - and the stupid bitch put him down for a nap with some Tylenol. That baby must have a pretty high tolerance for pain. Makes you wonder what he has to endure routinely. Finally, after four hours, she took the child to the ER.

News flash: fat people have bad or no sex

According to a story on Yahoo news, new research confirms the worst fears of those who worry about putting on extra pounds: Severely overweight people are much more likely to report poor sex lives.

Is this REALLY a news story? I know that since I've put on weight after having kids, my sex drive isn't quite what it used to be because I don't feel as attractive as I once did. When I felt really good about myself, I was even more of a horn dog than I am now.

A fitting email

Have you ever gone to mass, church, eucharist - whatever you call your services - and had the homily (sermon) seem to have been written for you? This happens to me just about every time I go. Seems like the priest knows what is troubling my heart and tailors that week's homily to cover it.

Many of you may be shocked, but I'm on a prayer email chain. I just talk nasty, but I'm a good person deep down. *hush those giggles*

This morning I got the following notes in my prayer email:
FRIDAY'S OLD SAYING: We find comfort among those who agree with us -- growth among those who don't. -- Frand A. Clark
BIBLICAL BASIS: Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds
of evil against you because of Me. (Matthew 5:10-11)

Wow! That was appropriate. For those of you who don't go to LabKat's blog or know who she is, she is one of my very best friends. She and I do not share political views, but who really cares? She had and I have been friends for 13 or so years and she has been through childbirth, tube feedings and countless other life-altering events. Regardless of how shitty (and that can be literal) things are, she is there. Same for me with her. I got her back and she's got mine. Well, anyway.

A couple of people decided this week to get all righteous on her and much of it because of me. Talk about feeling like a toad. She has enough crap on her plate to deal with and the last thing she needs is for people to attack her because of me. One person berated her because I'm *gasp* a conservative and called Kat all kinds of names. We could not possibly believe that women are equal human beings if we aren't lefty moonbats. And Kat - you know I don't lump you in there with that description - but some of these people have such out-there concepts that their tiny little minds can't possibly grasp that you can be friends with someone who does not share your points of view. This person, and I use the term loosely, told Kat not to link to her page and not to come back because she is friends with me. Little wonder to me why we call some people moon-bats. The second nasty note she got came from someone supposedly on my side of things. They berated her for choosing not to have children. Personally, if you don't want kids, I'm glad that you're not having them. Plus, she spoils the hell out of my kids, which is good for me. Then, the third looney-tune started going off on how women like her would be better off seen and not heard and much worse. It is scary that there are people like this out there.

*taking deep breaths*

When I read her blog entry yesterday, I immediately got a headache that stayed with me for a few hours. The last thing Kat or I need to deal with are these people. But, you know what? Maybe we can educate them. You certainly can't change the world if you never maneuver your small little mind out of a group with a bunch of yes people. Jesus certainly didn't have any issues with ministering to tax collectors and prostitutes. I hope that I may be able to sway a person to two to simply examine someone else's opinions with some thoughtful inspection. Then, if you are still adamantly opposed to my opinion ... I'll call you a moonbat. Just kidding. I'm rambling now. I just had to get that off my chest.

Sic 'em Bears!

For the first time in school history, the Baylor Bears will appear on the cover of Sports Illustrated. From what I can tell, the Baylor women's basketball team appears in the magazine's top 10 and is listed on the cover of the Nov. 22 issue, but is not the feature art.

Still, that is pretty cool.

Sic 'em Bears!

Pee or get off the pot

Today is World Toilet Day, which is the culmination of the World Toilet Summit, sponsored by the World Toilet Organization, according to Opinion The WTO's Web site describes the summit, which began this week:
Benefit from an interesting mix of plenary sessions covering in-depth situational studies and invaluable experiences from not less than 25 international and local speakers on Tourism, Design, Maintenance, Water Conservation, and Challenges and Considerations of the Toilet Code of Practice!

Wow! They don't just sit around on their duffs straining. They are can do kinds of people!


National Ammo Week

It is National Ammo Day on Friday and I had to budget money for Army of Dad to go buy more ammo. *shaking my head* But, ever since I went shooting I have understood why the ammo goes so quickly. Not much after Army of Dad reloaded the gun, I had cracked off 10 shots and was waiting for him to do it again.

Sworn Enemy is ready for National Ammo Week, too. The National Ammo Day site is the brainchild of Kim Du Toit and his lovely Mrs. Du Toit.

54th Texas inmate to get needle tonight

As a Catholic, I guess I should be appalled at putting killers to death, but I'm all for it. If it isn't a good way to persuade others not to kill, at least this asshole won't be killing anyone ever again.

Troy Kunkle is set to get the needle tonight and he sounds pretty deserving of it. This bitch is next on the list. She killed her husband and children for insurance money. There is a special place in hell for women who kill their own children. Wonder if they'll let volunteers slide the needle in?

Stupid college students

I find it quite amusing that a handful of students at UNT wanted to protest the rearranging of finals schedules so students could attend the New Orleans Bowl game, which UNT is likely to get invited to again. What is amusing to me is that the students' reason for bitching is that they wanted more time to study for finals and the exam schedule change denies them that luxury. Well, guess what dillweed? If you took the three hours you stood in the rain holding protest signs and studied in the nice warm library, you could make up for that time.

How about instead of spending Friday night at Mabel Peabody's or at Riprock's you spend that time studying? Wow, I'm so smart. I even have a college education.

Kiss me, I don't smoke

Today is the Great American Smoke Out sponsored by the American Cancer Society.

If you're a smoker, today is an excellent day to decide to give it up for good. My dad stopped smoking when I was a child because my doctor determined the secondhand smoke was causing my allergy problems. He did it for me. My mother-in-law quit smoking in honor of her late grandfather. Do it for someone you love - which should be yourself!

According to a previous US Surgeon General's report on the health consequences of involuntary smoking, three important conclusions about secondhand smoke were reached:
1)Involuntary smoking causes disease, including lung cancer, in healthy nonsmokers.
2)When compared with the children of nonsmoking parents, children of parents who smoke have more frequent respiratory infections, more respiratory symptoms, and slower development of lung function as the lung matures.
3)Separating smokers and non-smokers within the same air space may reduce, but does not eliminate, the exposure of nonsmokers to secondhand smoke.

This is one way to get the message across.

But, this is more my speed.

So long Grandpa

Grandpa left this morning and everyone was sad to see him go, but maybe Army of Dad will get one more chance to visit when he has to travel to the east coast for work after Christmas.

Bye Grandpa! Thanks for everything.


I'm a breeder

I have been so offended that I'm almost speechless and I know this has to surprise anyone who knows me or reads my blog. It all started with a stupid little email joke earlier this week at Bane Rants. It started a stream of offensive comments that ranged from why women shouldn't be allowed to vote to why we are incapable of running our own lives, we're just hormonal blathering idiots. The next focus of the rant went on about how some women are just "breeders" because we chose to have children and be moms. *gasp* What a concept?!

I can't even see straight when it comes to this topic. Women can be hormonal, but we are designed that way. It doesn't keep us from being able to run households or corporations any better or worse than a man. I tend to think men can lose some of their focus when they're not getting laid. They get crabby and hateful in ways worse than the most PMS-filled woman.

But, I don't want to rag on men. I love them. I just hate those people who can't see both sides of an issue. I don't have any opinion of women who chose not to have children. Sometimes I envy them and sometimes I feel sorry for them and other times I have no opinion whatsoever. Who cares if someone wants to have kids or not? Why should they care if I want to have children? Why do they feel the need to make ugly remarks at my choices? Besides, where would we all be without mothers? Nowhere.

Savage beasts

Looks like the Iraqis or maybe the media is finally getting it. We are there to help the Iraqis and not sabotage them. This poor woman's death is just sad. She dedicated her life to helping the Iraqi people. I'm guessing this is just further evidence of how stupid these terrorists are. At some point, the every day Iraqi citizen is going to take up arms and start killing these assholes who are sabotaging their own country.


This woman is breastfeeding - yes, breastfeeding - her PUPPY because the baby stopped taking the milk and she wants the dog to grow up and protect the baby. This is just plain gross on so many levels.


20+ questions - you asked for it and I answered

Remember on the annoying old man on Seinfeld? You asked for it, you got it. Toyota.

Same thing.

1. What is your all time favorite band?
This is a hard one. I probably have several. The Beatles would probably be the best followed by Tears for Fears.

2. What is the best concert you have ever seen?
Wow. I've seen some great ones. Probably the best ever was Paul McCartney.

3. How old were you when you got your first kiss from a boyfriend?
Kindergarten. We were in the home play center and Brad Hankins was the daddy and I was the mommy and he kissed me on his way to work. First REAL kiss was Damon McBrinn in the eighth grade at field day.

4. Have you ever walked in on your parents making love?
Ewww. It was right after and I couldn't understand why my dad wasn't dressed and still awake.

5. What is your favorite meal?
All-time would be a nice well-done filet mignon with baked potato and a Texas toast-style piece of garlic bread, maybe followed by a piece of turtle cheesecake. As far as comfort food, AoD's baked potato soup or his chili.

6. What was your prom theme and did you go? If so, what did your dress look like?
I went to four proms, so remembering the themes is beyond me. The most special prom was my senior prom and that dress was spectacular. It was a vintage hot pink satin dress from the 1940s. I bought it at an antique mall. It was incredible. Strapless with a little jacket that had a great wide pointy collar, satin covered buttons and the coat length was just below my breasts. The sleeves were three quarter length and folded back with a great pointy fold. It had matching satin gloves that went to the elbow and a great little hat that I would describe as a 40s style female WAC hat. I didn't wear the hat, but wore the rest at times. I took off the jacket early on. The dress went to mid-calf. As a 110-pound girl, I looked awesome. Big 80s hair though. Yikes.

7. Did you go off to college the fall right after high school? Did you have a job while in college?
I headed straight for Baylor University in the fall of 1987 and actually graduated in FOUR years! I worked at a Gingiss Formalwear starting in my sophomore year through graduation.

8. Did you live in the dorms, apt. or pledge to a house while in college?
No rent-a-friend for me. I did live in the dorm my freshman year in the penthouse. :) It was the term for the top floor of the dorm I lived in and supposedly the prettiest freshman girls on campus lived in the Penthouse.

9. What is the worst job you have ever had?
Working for three days as a dental assistant for a lecherous old dentist who scared me.

10. How did you come up with the names for your 3 children?
Can't answer here because everyone would know their names, but I'll email you. One was for a poet, one was after his grandfathers and the other was named after a saint and some late females I wanted to honor.

11. Where did you meet Army of Dad?
Oh, this is a good one. I hung out with a chick sportswriter at the Killeen Daily Herald and we would frequent this country and western bar called Sam's Station. On Thursday nights, a local radio station sponsored events and they would have $1.03 drinks till 11 p.m. and a hot body contest for men. So, we would go to get cheap drinks and get hit on by hot young soldiers. One particular night - two weeks after my divorce was final - I was feeling particularly sad and lonely. Most times when we went there, some hot soldier would be hitting on me and begging me to go home with him. I would always decline. I was NOT that kind of girl. Well, on this night, I spotted AoD and was immediately smitten. I was also three sheets to the wind, too. I kept going on and on to my friend about how cute he was and how he must be way TOO young for me. After all, I was 28 and he couldn't have been over 18. I walked by him a few times trying to get his attention. No luck. So, finally she couldn't stand it any more and she walked over to him. I wanted to crawl under the table. He turned and looked at me as she was talking to him. So, I went over there to talk to him. He showed me his ID. He was clearly 20 and almost 21, he emphasized. I made it clear to him of my age, my marital status and the fact that I was the mother of a 2-year-old. I told him if he didn't like it, too bad and I would walk away. He said no problems. So, after we talked and danced a bit, I went to find my friend and tell her that we were leaving. She was shocked and stunned and kept asking me over and again if I was sure of this. Yes, yes. I was. Her "date" for the evening pulled me aside to make sure I had enough wits about me to make this decision. He was a scary former soldier with a mohawk who looked out for me at the club and kept boys from bothering me in a big brother kind of way. So, he gave AoD the evil eye and may have threatened him, I'm not sure. That was our beginning. AoD actually lectured me for leaving the club with a strange man I didn't know. Not sure if he EVER believed me, but that was WAY out of character for me.

12. How long did you know Army of Dad before you knew you loved him?
Maybe a week. We met on a Friday night and a week or so later I won tickets to a concert at Fiesta Texas in San Antonio, about a three-hour drive from Fort Hood. We decided to make it a weekend and stay. He made me feel so safe and he paid so much attention to me, I kept telling him that if he wasn't so young, I could fall in love with him. We had talked and decided to NOT be boyfriend/girlfriend because I was not ready for a relationship so soon after my divorce. But, alas, I fell in love anyway.

13. Where is the best place you've ever been on vacation?
I think that would be a tie between Washington, D.C., and Europe. I saw so much history in both places. I would love to go back.

14. What is the most romantic thing Army of Dad has ever done or said to you?
One of the last business trips he went on, he had to leave super early in the morning, but before he left he took like pieces of note paper and left me little notes all over the house. I was still finding them weeks later.

15. Who is the one deceased person you would like most to meet?
I hope to meet my Savior when I die.

16. What is your favorite movie?
So many that I love. I love the Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter movies. Ferris Bueller's Day Off is up there and A Christmas Story, too.

17. What celebrity did you have a crush on while a teenager?
Don't laugh. Rick Springfield was my biggest one, but my first sex dream was about David Lee Roth.

18. What was your favorite tv show growing up?
Again, lots. I loved The Cosby Show, Family Ties, Life Goes On, Fantasy Island and Love Boat.

19. What is the one most important event of your life that you know you'll never forget?
When I was pregnant with my oldest child and lived in Midland. Because it seldom rains in West Texas, the genius city engineers there have no drainage. So, whenever it comes a downpour, the streets flooded. On this particular day, Uzz had the better car because he had to drive to Brownwood to open a new store. So, I had the shitty car with no AC. I was about 7 months pregnant and had to keep the windows cracked so the windshield wouldn't fog up. Well, I was driving in water that was up to the middle of my car door and I was getting scared. I finally got out of that situation and as I was driving home I saw an accident in which a car drove into a building. The reporter in me wanted to go over and cover the accident for the paper, but the mother in me said 'it isn't safe, go home.' That was a major turning point in my life. That was the moment that I became a REAL mother. I was no longer just living for me, chasing tornadoes or going into harm's way for the sake of a story. I was responsible for another life.

20. What's your pet peeves?
People who lie. People who drive slow in the fast lane. There are more, but those are the top two.

21. I'd like to know how you can handle any sort of contact at all with your ex, let alone as close as you all appear to be, now.
Uzz and I love our son and we remain friends for his sake and because we like each other. We were good friends.

22. On the ex-husband line, if he is so wonderful, how come you're divorced? Do you ever feel like you have two husbands? Sometimes I do feel like I have two husbands. Regarding why we are divorced, well, we went different directions. We married relatively young. I was running away from my childhood and thought getting married would solve all those issues, for one thing. I thought I could change the hippie-Peter Pan in him and make him a grown-up, but that just isn't him. We still share our love for our son, music, art, sports, etc. We are much better off being friends for our son's sake than being enemies. The initial divorce was bad, but we got through it with effort.

23. Do you open presents on Christmas eve, at midnight, or first light Christmas morning? Growing up, we always opened one gift on Christmas Eve and then exchanged gifts from my grandmother and cousins. Then, on Christmas morning we opened the rest of the gifts. Now, we let the children open one gift from someone outside the family like family friends or aunts and uncles. Then, we save the rest for Christmas morning.

Cast is off

Hooray! The cast is off. I now have this enormous splint on my arm. The doctor told me to "not overdo it" as I have been and to ask my husband to do the dishes. I laughed out loud at that one. He did do one load for me and took me out to eat for about week after the surgery so we could avoid the dishes. It was just really funny.

Three weeks with the splint on. Yuck. Still feels better than with the cast although I have a huge callous on my right thumb that is really bothering me. I try very hard to keep my hands soft and now I have this. *sigh* I would have been a bad pioneer woman. I'm also going to have a big scar. The doctor said he was disappointed that the scar appears to be raised. He sutured me under the skin to try to avoid that. But, I'm guessing me doing too much strained the healing process and caused it to raise a bit. I did the same thing with a scar on my left arm as a young girl. I had a pin placed in my elbow and continued playing basketball of all things. That scar is huge. Oh well.

And, just by the way, I didn't even feel it when the nurse took out my stitches. She said some guy passed out yesterday when she did that. Ha!

Off to lunch with my father-in-law and then curtain shopping. He is going to buy me some valances for my birthday.

Reporter arrested for harassment

If this case constitutes harassment, throw my ass in jail! I do worse than this all the time for stories. I will call and leave people three or four messages a day if I'm on deadline and need that person as a source for the story. I'll call them at work, I'll call them at home, I'll call them on their cell phones. I've been known to go to their homes or call their relatives if I need them badly enough. If you want a reporter to leave you alone, call him or her back and say NO COMMENT. It is that simple. Or call them back and say, don't bother me again. That is all you have to do.

Worse yet, this reporter can get arrested for leaving two messages for a source while LabKat can't get the truly harassing calls from the rednecks from hell to stop (see her Oct. 27 post) from bothering her. Gotta love asshole cops. We'll arrest a reporter doing his job and let the husband and wife duo from a Cops episode continue.

More stupid people

This dumbass photographer said he "knew it was coming" but opted to stay in Fallujah after being told that men were going to be killed if they left after the deadline. So, dufus No. 1 is all verklepmt at the horrible stuff he saw when he chose to stay and shoot the assault.

Some people are stupid

If you're going to shoot a wounded man who is already down, why do it in front of a
news camera guy? Seriously. This marine is just THAT stupid. I know he was mad because reports said he had been shot in the face the day before, so maybe it wasn't the best idea to put him right back out there. Regardless, don't do stupid stuff in front of other people. Gees.

Gay marriage?

Again, this is one of those topics that I'm just not really sure how I feel about it. My initial instinct is to not make amendments regarding it and simply leave it to the states to decide. I feel the same way about abortion. Neither should be a federal right. Leave it to the states to decide what they think about it and leave it to the voters of that state as well as the church. If a pastor or priest won't perform a ceremony, go to the JP and have a civil union. It is just as binding to me. AoD and I were married that way before we had a priest marry us in the church several years later.

Personally, I don't see how gay people getting married is going to impact me in any fashion. I don't want to see them mugging down in the mall any more than I want to see a man and a woman mugging in the mall. But, then again, I have many homosexual friends who are life partners and have been together longer than me and Army of Dad and they've weathered all those things that husband and wife have to weather, too. So, why shouldn't they be allowed to marry if they want to?

Here is one opinion from Bogus Gold. I'm interested in yours. I think this is one topic I can be swayed on.


Happy visit

Well, someone took to her grandpa after not seeing him for a few months.

Doubts and reminders

I have moments of doubt and discontent routinely. I second guess almost every part of my life. I'm a recovering perfectionist. Picture me like a perfectoholic. I expect myself to be perfect. Army of Dad is similar except he hasn't accepted his problem, embraced it and worked to recover from it. He is still in denial. He thinks he can be perfect and expects the best from all those around him. Me, however, I'm in recovery. I'm learning to let go. So what, that my office floor wasn't vaccuumed before my father-in-law arrived today. What is that going to impact in the grand scheme of things? Very little.

But, there are certain things I have high expections about. One being my parenting. I often question myself and what I do. I kick myself for decisions that I make. I regret things I've done or not done, things left undone.
I've been wrangling within myself about the Iraq War. On one hand, I think it is the right thing to do. We are taking the fight to the terrorists while also freeing people from a murderous dictator. Sounds like a win-win situation, right? Well no. I hate that U.S. husbands, fathers, wives, mothers, daughters and sons are dying. I hate that folks in the military are getting stop-losses and not allowed to leave and return to civilian life when they want to. I hate that the father of one of my little boy's soccer teammates is being returned to active duty and taken away from him son and wife.

But, then I stop and think about it. Why are we still there? These ungrateful people don't want us there. They're kidnapping and murdering anyone they can find with white skin. If they don't want us there, why are we giving up so much for them?

Then, I heard about this website written by Iraqis who are glad we are there. It is written by three brothers working together on the blog. Here is what they say in the "about me" category:
-Mohammed: 35 years old dentist/single/graduated from Baghdad university in 1995. Left his job 6 years ago because he refused to serve in Saddam's army, and now back to work in Samawa City in the southwest part of Iraq. Interests: poetry, reading (history, religions, philosophy and politics).
-Ali: 34 years old doctor/married/graduated from Baghdad university in 1995. Left his job for 3 years for the same reason, then did the military service after losing hope, just to go on with his career. Now working in Baghdad as a senior resident and studying to become a pediatrician. Interests: chess, reading (history, parapsychology, politics and novels).
-Omar (I'm the one responsible for the publishing and internet work): 24 years old dentist/single/graduated from Baghdad university in 2002. Saved from the military service only by God and the coalition. Now working in Basra. Interests: music, sports (martial arts), reading (novels) and now blogging. We were all born in Baghdad and still living here.

"There are those who were born free and don’t appreciate the gift they have received and the slaves who have come to love the walls of their prison and can’t see life in a different light." ~~Ali post

That's when, I take a deep breath. THIS is why we are fighting this war and giving up so much. We, as Americans want others to have the same liberties and privileges we have. We are a giving society on the whole. We are a loving and forgiving society and we crave those rights for others in the world. It reminds me of those times as a parent when I have to follow through on something I started. It may not be pleasant, but it is necessary. Just like taking away that bedtime bottle from the baby. Closing the door and letting the baby cry it out when I know nothing is wrong. I hate it. It causes me to suffer, but in the long run, I know it is best. I just don't like to do it. I know those are bad analagies for the loss of life, but it is what pops to mind.

Even worse, if we let up on our resolve to finish this out - then the terrorists win. It is like telling the kid NO to having another piece of candy. If you give in after repeated requests for more, he has won and he knows he has you beat. All he has to do is beat down your resolve. Again, poor analogy, but you get the idea.

We have to see this through. No matter how ugly or how bad it is. We have a job to do and to finish.

Cleaning frenzy continues

Seldom do I follow the children around with a vaccuum cleaner to scoop up any crumbs that fall until we're having visitors. Army of Dad's father will be here sometime today and he hasn't been here in about a year and a half or so. This makes me a nervous wreck, fearing of being judged as a homemaker. Since I work at home, most people see me as someone who doesn't really work, so I want to keep a clean house for his visit. *sigh*

Anyone have a solution for dusting? And, what I mean is that when I dust my bookshelves, the dust just lands right back on the shelves. Do those Old English wipes work? Help. Pisses me off to dust and 10 seconds later, it barely looks different.

One more day till this Godforsaken cast is off.


Baby showers are so much fun

Today was one of those days that just wears me out. My father-in-law is arriving for a visit in the morning and I had a baby shower to help host today. These are two great events, but when you have a bum right arm in a cast, it makes things SOOOO much harder to do.

So, I've been running around the house for the past three days trying to get it cleaned one-handedly. It is still not completely done, but good enough. The baby shower went well. I took stuff to make punch, my beautiful silver punch bowl and stuff for frou-frou sandwiches, which seemed to be a hit. One of the other hostesses brought a cute little Winnie the Pooh cake that she spent entirely too much money for! But, it was cute. My friend had a great baby shower. I LOVE buying baby stuff. One guest even brought a baby for us to all coo over. All in all, great fun. Just a lot of work and effort, but well worth it.

Vikes lost today and they were even on TV for AoD to watch. Dammit. I get to watch the Cowboys lose Monday night.

While I'm on a pissy rant, let me tell you what the restaurant manager told me yesterday at our soccer teams' awards dinner. We asked a local Chinese buffet restaurant to let us have one of their meeting rooms for our party. We were going to have about 17 families coming. I told this woman numerous times that I didn't know how many would be eating, but told her to expect between 35 and 50 or maybe more. We never know who will or won't show up or if they'll just come to get a trophy without eating. The restaurant gives you a pink paper listing how many buffets you paid for and you place it on the table, so the staff knows who did or did not pay. We tallied up about 41 people eating and maybe 15 not. Mid-way through our party, I was pulled aside by the manager and told that the owner was mad because we had people who didn't buy meals. She said we reserved the room for a dinner meeting which meant people should be dining. I think she thought I would agree to pay for those people. Screw her. They weren't eating and I wasn't going to pay for them. She was pretty insistent that the owner was really mad about this because they couldn't tell who was or wasn't eating. I told her that I thought the pink tickets showed that and that our families are honest. If they didn't pay, they weren't eating. Plain and simple. Again, she goes over the owner's anger. I told her fine, make sure and tell him that we won't be bringing back these 17 families for another awards dinner in the spring as we had planned to do. If it was THAT important to him to get those extra 10 or so buffets, then he could go without the 41 we paid for. And, if that wasn't audacious enough, she came in as we were wrapping up to ask me to get the families to leave tips for the staff. You have GOT to be kidding. So, now I have to find a new place for our awards event next spring. As if I didn't have enough other stuff to do.

All Aboard!

Took my eldest out last night for some special Mom and Kiddo time. Hard to do with three children, but Army of Dad and I try our best. I have had the biggest scares of my life with this child. From an emergency c-section, to the diagnosis of a birth defect at 6 weeks old, many hospitalizations and more. I am an overprotective mother, there is no doubt. So, when certain things happen when the children are in my care in makes it even scarier. On our way to to see The Incredibles last night, the parking lot at the movie theater was packed, so we were moving cautiously to get a parking space and then into the theater. I waited till a car passed, looked both ways and sent Pickle across the driving lane where we parked and there it was - a car that came out of nowhere. Fortunately, the child quickly moved to his left jumping backwards. I, on the other hand, froze dead in my tracks watching the impending accident moving in front of me in slow motion. All I could think was "Oh my fucking God. My son is about to get hit by a car and there is nothing that I can do." The car was speeding and must have come around a corner or pulled out of a spot. I don't know where it came from, but we looked before he walked a few steps in front of me and into the path of the car. Fortunately, the dude was looking and stopped. He shot me a dirty look and for a brief moment, I blamed myself for this near tragedy. Then, I took my shaking and crying son over onto a grassy spot in the lot and hugged him. I laughed and cried at the same time. I was crying because of the fear and laughing at the relief. Bless his angel heart. I thanked God and hugged this sweet little boy. It took him a few moments before he could shake it off, but he did. Children are resilient.

We didn't get to see The Incredibles because it was sold out. So, we saw a great suitable second choice, Polar Express instead. It was really good. I don't know how much Hot Rod would enjoy it as a 5-year-old, but it was perfect for my not-so-sure-but-still-wants-to-believe-10-year-old. I hate to rob him of that joy of Santa. The movie touched many heartstrings for me from the poor little boy who was unsure of himself to the sweet nature of this little boy and his friendship with the sweet little girl. Pickle and I both cried at different parts of the movie. He is such a precious little sensitive boy. I think I cried, too, because he is such a treasure and I came so close to losing him just that very evening. I thanked God so much last night. I thank God every day for my blessings. Even when I think life is rotten, I'm reminded of the beautiful family I have. The love of my husband, the healthy and bright children. Our challenges are mere speed bumps on the road of life.

Not sure what happened to make this Oh No face at a game last month. *thanking God for my blessings*


Undefeated season and division champs!

We wrapped up our regular season today and both teams won! Hooray.

Our oldest team finished 8-0-2. Here is the motley crew at our awards presentation today. And, no, my son isn't flashing gang signs. He is showing his drawing of the team mascot, Super Sonic. And, the smallest in the front is a little brother. Our team is definitely family oriented.

We make a big deal out of each kid and give them each an award. They get a real kick out of it. One of the moms on the older team coordinated efforts to show their appreciation and we got movie passes, a dinner out for me and AoD to a little chi chi place downtown and then gift certificates to an ice cream parlor for the whole family. But, the best part is a little book she made with letters written by each of the boys. Those are priceless.

Here is a sampling. I didn't edit them:
Dear Coach,
I think you put people in the right pisisons. It was fun playing goalie, but playing forward was more fun. Your the best coach I ever had. You are a good coach because you teach us stuff we need to know. I look forward to play next year.
love, XXXXX

Here I am writing you these few lines to tell you I Love having you a my coach so I Hope you don't Quiet on me because you've have showed me so mush as long as I can play you can teach me more 4 my best. Well again please don't quiet on me and thank you alot.

We have a great bunch of 9- and 10-year-olds and parents, too.

Here are our kids with their awards. The little team finished 3-7. Not too bad for that bunch. They came a long way from losing their first game 13-0. After that, we didn't lose by more than two or three goals, so that is not bad.

Our big team now goes to the Tournament of Champions next month. So, soccer continues.


Let's play 20 questions

Ok, all four of my readers - you're being asked to help me out. I borrowed, ok stole, this idea from Just an Army Wife's blog. She stole it from someone else. If there is a question you'd like to ask - whatever the topic - email it to me at the email in the top right corner and probably Monday or Tuesday, I'll answer them all in a posting. Or I won't answer them depending upon what you ask ... but we'll see.

A voice I appreciate

I have always loved Bill Cosby. I was a fan of Fat Albert as a kid and I remember his Jello commercials. Then, as I grew up, I enjoyed watching The Cosby Show and listening to his stand-up routines that sound like just about every household in America.

He just puts icing on the cake for me as the voice of reason. He shares my opinion that people need a hand up and not a hand out and he has been vocal about his opinions that minorities are equals to everyone and encourages them not to blame "the man" for holding them back. He has come under attack by members of the black community for this opinion, but I think he is right. I have a great example of this with a friend of mine who grew up in Oak Cliff, raised by an alcoholic grandmother because his teenaged prostitute mother couldn't raise him. He is now a college graduate and working at a major university. He is the perfect example of someone who didn't let his upbringing keep him down. He could have easily gave up and sucked off the government tit, but he didn't. Others saw potential in him and encouraged him and gave him opportunities and he wisely took them. Another thing about Cosby that makes him stand out is that he is actually educated on issues. I think he has post-graduate degrees that give him an inkling of knowledge that many celebrities who open their mouths lack.

Michael Moore lies continue

Gees, I really REALLY fucking hate Michael Moore. This misguided individual has started work on his sequel to F 9/11 so it can come out in time for the next presidential election.

He said he hoped this movie would sway people not to vote for Bush. Hey dumbass, newsflash, it didn't work then!!! What makes you think the second time will be a charm?

Michael Moore quote from the story:
"We want to get the cameras rolling now and have it ready in two (to) three years," Moore told Daily Variety columnist Army Archerd. "Fifty-one percent of the American people lacked information (in this election), and we want to educate and enlighten them. They weren't told the truth."

Oh yeah, and his tripe is just dripping with the truth. I may be sick.


One of the greatest generation - WWII vet speaks at local Veterans' Day event

Today, I was fortunate enough to spend 30 minutes freezing my keester off and attend a Veteran's Day event on our downtown square. The 30-mph northerly winds made the temps feel much colder than they were and I hadn't planned on attending, so all I had was a lightweight coat. But, I figured if these vets, currently military and the featured speaker - an 86-year-old WWII vet - could get out there and weather it (pun intended), so could I.

I'm grateful that I did it, too. Retired Master Sgt. George Burlage spoke with great humor - if you can imagine it - of his more than six years as a POW held by the Japanese. At his conclusion, there was a 21-gun salute by a local VFW chapter and the ROTC units from the two local high schools participated, as well. I missed the introductions and first 10 minutes, but was glad I came. Below is his picture from a story in the newspaper today.

Below is the story from the local paper:

Retired U.S. Marine George Burlage of Denton remembers the creeping feeling of inevitable defeat during the early days of World War II. His poorly equipped battalion stationed in the Philippines surrendered to the Japanese less than five months after Pearl Harbor, leading to his 40 months as a prisoner of war.

"They continuously shelled us night and day," he said. "All we had was old-style rifles to repel the landing. They hit us that night, and by noon the next day, we were through. They just overwhelmed us."

Burlage will talk about his wartime experiences at a Veterans’ Day ceremony on the Courthouse on the Square lawn at 11 a.m. today. The public is invited.

Burlage, 86, joined the Marines in 1939 and was stationed on Corregidor in the Philippines for two years. He was scheduled to be rotated back to the United States when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941.

The Japanese immediately attacked the Philippines, and on April 9, 1942, the troops at Bataan surrendered to the Japanese. The American forces on Corregidor held out for almost a month before surrendering on May 6. After the surrender, Burlage said the Americans were kept on the island for two weeks before being moved to a large POW camp on the mainland and eventually put to work building two airfields. They were forced to work barefoot, dressed only in "G-strings" and straw hats, using nothing but wheelbarrows, hand tools and shovels, said.

"We would work all day to try to hack down a 100-year-old mango tree," he said. The prisoners were rousted at daylight and fed some watered-down rice. They were given more rice in the field at noon and then marched back at dark and fed rice again.

"The same thing: rice, rice, rice all day," Burlage said. "There wasn’t much of it, but it was rice."

Because of the inadequate diet, he contracted dengue fever and came back with beriberi, he said. Two main groups of workers on each end of the field worked toward the middle, he said. The POWs sabotaged the project by banging on the survey stakes to throw off the levelness of the field, he said. The POWs were put to work with small concrete mixers to pave the runway a few yards at a time, and they sabotaged the cement by altering the mixture, he said.

"It was more like a veneer instead of a good pavement," he said. "It looked good, but it wasn’t strong."

At the ceremony opening the field, a transport plane landed on the runway carrying a Japanese general to speak at the dedication.

"It was a beautiful landing, but as it went along, it started sinking into the runway," Burlage said.

The field was never used, he said. American bombers hit it before an investigation into the sabotage began, and the POWs were loaded onto a small coal ship and taken to Japan by way of Formosa.

"I’m not exaggerating: They put us standing up, shoulder to shoulder, back to breast, and you could not move," he said. "The officers that were there complained, and they were told they were being taken out to the breakwater to be put on a big ship. That wasn’t true."

Only the strong POWs survived, he said. The others died of thirst or gave up.

"Their bodies were pulled up and thrown over in the China Sea, and we had room to sit down after a while," he said.

The convoy was hit by American submarines the third day out, but the ship the POWs were on wasn’t hit. They were on the ship for 38 days, he said, but they were fed only a ration of rice about seven or eight days of that, he said.

"I remember at the very last, we were rationing out the water by tablespoonfuls, mess kit tablespoonfuls," Burlage said.

The ship landed in Formosa, and the POWs were marched to a schoolhouse to be housed while waiting for a ship to Japan.

"We were so weak — we walked out, staggered out, crawled out," he said.

They could only walk 100 yards at a time, he said. After a couple of weeks, they were shipped to Japan. In Japan, he was put to work as a driller in a lead mine, and treatment improved, he said, even though it was cold. Burlage said the POWs in Japan knew a date had been set for their execution: Nov. 2, 1945, before the American invasion of the Japanese mainland. The dropping of the two atomic bombs that ended the war saved their lives, he said.

Death rates among POWs held by Japan were 40 percent, the highest of any war the United States has fought. At just over 6 feet tall, Burlage weighed 195 pounds when the war started. He weighed almost 100 pounds when it ended. Burlage credits good luck and being in the right place at the right time for his survival. "I was lucky. I was always doing a lot of thinking," he said. "It seems like I was always a step ahead of them."

He was sent home in September 1945, and he married in 1950. His wife, Willie Mae, died in 1995. He has a daughter and two granddaughters. After his enlistment expired, Burlage rejoined the Marines and worked as a combat correspondent during the Korean War for Leatherneck magazine. After he retired in 1959, he attended North Texas State University (now the University of North Texas), earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a master’s degree in political science while working for the Denton Record-Chronicle from 1960 to 1963. He went to work for the Federal Aviation Administration as a public information officer in 1963, and retired 20 years later.

The story, itself, is not very well written in my opinion. But, this man's story is incredible. He spoke very matter of factly about these things in his speech and I'm glad to have heard him.

Veterans' Day - thanks to each of you

Thank you to my favorite veteran - Army of Dad. Many thanks to all of the other veterans who proudly served our country. Your sacrifices will not be forgotten by any member of my family.

Originally called Armistice Day, this holiday was established to honor Americans who had served in World War I. It falls on November 11, the day when that war ended in 1918, but it now honors veterans of all wars in which the United States has fought, according to a U.S. Embassy website.

Army of Dad and his best friend - now a Staff Sgt. at Fort Collins, Colo., and a veteran of the Iraq War. This was taken in May 1997.

Thank a veteran today for y0ur freedoms - freedom to read a free press, freedom to voice your opinions, freedom to vote, freedom to bear arms and so many more!

Ding Dong the Witch is Dead!

*dancing a little jig*

It is really not the Christian thing for me to do, but when evil is defeated, it is justified, I believe. And, evil is what Arafat was.

Anyone who wants to dispute that he was a terrorist should read this:

Educated as an engineer in Egypt, Arafat served in the Egyptian army and then started a contracting firm in Kuwait. It was there that he founded the Fatah movement, which became the core of the PLO.
After the Arabs' humbling defeat by Israel in the six-day war of 1967, the PLO thrust itself on the world's front pages by sending its gunmen out to hijack airplanes, machine gun airports and seize Israeli athletes at the 1972 Summer Olympics.
"As long as the world saw Palestinians as no more than refugees standing in line for U.N. rations, it was not likely to respect them. Now that the Palestinians carry rifles the situation has changed," Arafat explained.

Yeah, we really respect assholes who hijack airplanes, kidnap Olympic athletes and shoot down innocent people as they walk through the airport. Thumbs up, buddy. Good move.

I, for one, will dance a jig on this day. My sons even thrust their fists in the air when I told them that a very, very bad man died. I cautioned them, though, sometimes it isn't always positive when you get what you ask for. They don't understand that concept yet, but they will. I fear for what his replacement will be, yet I still pray for peace.


Merry Christmas on Nov. 10?

I am one of those people who bee-bops around during the holidays. I like to decorate the day after Thanksgiving. I have most of my Christmas shopping done already. I'm that kind of person. But, even this goes beyond my holiday spirit. Sunny 97.1 is already playing Christmas music -AND NOTHING BUT CHRISTMAS MUSIC!!!!! WTF?

But, while we're on the Christmas topic, I'm a little peeved at Target. What a bunch of Scrooges. Target won't allow the Salvation Army bell ringers to solicit in front of their stores this holiday season. That is just downright sad to me and apparently it is going to have a huge impact on the bottom line for the Salvation Army, which pulls in big bucks from Target shoppers. I know it will probably impact what we give to the bell ringers because I avoid the mall at all costs during the holidays and tend to shop the stand-alone stores like Target and Hasting's. My kids always get a charge out of dropping their change in the kettle. Target said they're just following a policy that has been in place. The chain does give a lot of money to charities, I just don't like this.

I can't believe I'm already talking about Christmas. Bah, humbug.

My daughter and Harry Carey

She sounds a bit like the late Cubs announcer when she says "HEY!"

I couldn't find that sound, but found this.

A shirt I need to have

Army of Dad sent me a link to this and I love it.

The shirt has this on the front:

Has CMA sipped the lefty kool-aid?

Maybe, just maybe, it isn't some sort of slight. But, I think it speaks volumes that Toby Keith had six nominations and Alan Jackson had seven nominations for County Music Association awards and neither won a single award. In case you're not a country music fan, these good ole boys are patriotic fellows who proudly wave the red, white and blue. Ok, but that isn't where my conspiracy theory comes in. What seals the deal for me is that pinko Jane Fonda-lovin Kris Kristofferson was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. He was even introduced by his pot-smoking tax-evading buddy Willie Nelson.

Kristofferson thanked the late Johnny and June Cash "for endorsing me back when nobody knew me and defending me later when everybody did and for standing up for truth and justice and human rights." I may upchuck at any moment. Where was his good pal Barbra Streisand from "A Star is Born?" Yuck.

Thank God we live in a country where these doofuses (or would that be doofi?) can spout off their crap and people like me can smell a conspiracy.

Some people should not be allowed to procreate

I heard this story on the radio as I was getting out of the car to pump some gas and I thought I was going to throw up because it upset me so much. Some asshole tossed a 5-day-old baby out a second story window. The parents said it was a deranged uncle of the infant. But, they said they allowed psycho uncle to have the baby in the room with him unsupervised. That alone is stupidity, but it gets worse. These people have been investigated before for neglect and possible abuse with a 2-year-old child in the house, too. So, that makes me wonder what the hell is going on.

Last week, I read about this in our local newspaper. These assholes locked their son in the garage and wouldn't let him in the house. He would beg for food from neighbors when he was let out to walk the dog. I can't understand how people can mistreat ANY child, but the idea of mistreating your own children is a concept that I can't grasp.

One of the most disturbing parts of these crimes is that they're local to me - one in a Fort Worth suburb and one in Denton. That is simply disgusting. There is a special place in hell for people who hurt children and an even worse part for those who hurt their own children. My kids may have all kinds of fodder for therapy later in life, but thank God, it will seem like nothing compared to these poor children - if they make it to adulthood.


Video game widow

Well, it happened. Army of Dad walked in about 10ish tonight from a softball game. I got a kiss on the cheek, he dusted the dirt from his ankles after taking off his cleats and then proceeded straight to help the Master Chief fight off the villianous aliens. He said he read that an average gamer can beat this game through in about 10 hours. Then he looked at his watch. Great. So, I decided to play a little online poker. I'm getting pretty good at Texas Hold'em. Of course it is all play money.

AoD missed me blogging today. I had a busy day. Hunted Halo 2 down for him, did some errands, got my hair done. I got a couple of compliments on it today, not that AoD noticed because he was heading for the Xbox. I could have Medusa hair and he probably wouldn't have noticed tonight. I was thinking tonight that I miss the courting days. Married for almost 8 years and we're WAY past that, but I really long for those days of dates that HE planned, a sweet note found in my car, actually being seduced by more than just a smack on the ass and a nod toward the bedroom before hearing "I gotta get up at 4:30, if we're going to do this, lets get to it." Ah, you silver tongued devil.

I had a small business tax planning seminar I attended tonight and it was very informative, but it left me with time to think about those good old days of being chased by boys and how it was to have several chasing me simultaneously. Nothing like competition to keep a man on top of his game. The idea that another man could win my affections was enough to keep them steadfastly paying attention to me. Now, that there is a little gold band on my finger and three young'uns that require a father, somehow the hunt is off.

I think I'm whining again. Sorry. Damn Halo 2. I wonder how many men called in sick today to stay home and play?