Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Disney!

Just wanted to share a few group photo shots that I just received from our Disney trip back in January which you can read about here.  Fun times!



Spotlight on Joyful Creations with Kim

I have stumbled across a blog that I absolutely love and want to share with all my other card making girlfriends, Gia, Stacy and Erin, and anyone else out there who is crafty and enjoys making cards.  It's called Joyful Creations with Kim and it's all about stamping and card making!  She does a post almost daily with a picture of a card she has made and the products that she has used.  Some are very detailed while others are simple yet elegant.  She even has a section of iPod (iPhone) Apps that are dedicated to card making.  I didn't even know these existed until reading her blog and you can bet, I've downloaded the ones she recommends.  She has a section of Tips, Techniques, Tutorials that is loaded with all kinds of great information!  I emailed her and asked for her permission to do a post about her and her blog so I could share with all of you and she sent me back the sweetest email!  I highly recommend checking out her blog (you can do that here) and becoming a follower!  Let me know what you think.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

In Their Boots

I participated in the 2nd Annual In Their Boots day today at MCAS New River.  I'll be honest.  I didn't want to do it.  I did it last year and I've been sick and have felt terrible for about the past week or two and just did not want to do it.  But I had already signed up for it so I got up EARLY this morning and got ready and then got the kids up and ready because they were going to participate in the children's version of it.  

We headed to the air station where we got signed in and with our groups.  I didn't see the kids for the rest of the day except for one time.  I saw Grace from my bus window when she was at the Static Display.  Anyway, we started the morning off with a few words from Col. Hewlett, the base CO and then learned how to march and stand in formation.  That is so much harder than it looks!
  
The girls from H&HS
After formation we headed to our first stop, the flight simulators.  I flew the Cobra and the 53 and didn't do too bad on either one, if I say so myself.
We got to shoot all sorts of weapons...
and fight each other for fun of course!
And a little tug o' war is always good for the soul.  And yes, the H&HS girls won 2 out of 3.  We would have won the first one had Kathy and I been on that rope!
Next was the static display which I've seen a million times but it never gets old.  We got all excited when we got there and saw this shiny 53.  We knew this was a HMX bird and thought it might be all decked out on the inside.  Evidently HMX is getting rid of all their 53's and this now belongs to 302, the training squadron here at New River.  It had already been gutted on the inside and they just had not gotten around to giving it a paint job yet.  Bummer.



 You have no idea the pressure and force that this hose puts out.  Wow!
Sitting in the C12 that Dave flies
Kathy Wise and me

So, even though I didn't want to go it ended up being a fun day once again.  

Friday, March 25, 2011

MilSpouse Friday Fill-In

milspouse-friday-fill-in.jpgI've been reading several blogs lately that are doing this Milspouse Friday Fill-In and I decided to do it today.  It was started by Wife of a Sailor and she posts new questions each week.  It's a great way to get to know a little more about someone.  So here goes.....

1. What is your must have gadget? (submitted by Flying High With My Flyboy) Most definitely my iPhone.  Sometimes I feel as if it is another appendage to my body and I feel completely lost without it.  

2. How does your adulthood compare to what you imagined it would be like when you were a little kid? (submitted by L to the Third) As a child, I pictured myself as very career oriented.  After all, I was planning on going to law school and after practicing law for a bit I was going to be a judge.  I'm sure I figured that I would get married and I also planned on adopting two children rather than having my own.  And that is completely different from who I am today.  I am a very happily married, stay at home mom to two beautiful kids who are biologically mine.  I went to college and became a paralegal with the intent of still going to law school but that was forever changed when I met and fell in love with a pilot in the USMC.  And I have no regrets.

3. What is your favorite chocolate recipe? (submitted by Our First Deployment) My favorite chocolate recipe is something that my sister would make for me every time I would come visit her when I was in college.  I've seen it called different things but it's basically a crust made out of crushed pecans, butter and flour and is layered with chocolate pudding and a cream cheese mixture layer and topped with a layer of whipped cream and powdered sugar.  It's deeeelish!

4. How do you deal with military life when it gets to be to much or to hard? (submitted by Combat Boots And Pointe Shoes)   Just keep calm and carry on!  No, seriously, it is what it is and I knew when I married my husband that he was in the military and would deploy and all of those things that go along with it.  You just have to suck it up and deal with it no matter how hard it may be.  

5. What piece of advice would you give a new Military spouse facing their first deployment? (submitted by The Albrecht Squad) Stay busy!  Keeping yourself busy whether it is with a job, your family, kids, friends, squadron, community or hobby helps to take your mind off things.  And before you know it, you will be on the downhill stretch and think "oh no, I need more time to prepare for his homecoming!".

      Wednesday, March 23, 2011

      Meet Zoe

      Meet our new pet, Zoe.  The kids have been begging us for years to get another pet.  They've asked for dogs, cats, guinea pigs, birds, you name it.  Dave and I both agreed that we didn't want another dog.  They were alot of responsibility and work and neither of us wanted that again.  And we knew that Grace and Zachary were not old enough or responsible enough to take care of it.  We considered a guinea pig but I had so many people talk me out of it.  I never thought we could get a cat because all my life I have thought I was allergic to cats and I have been around some that killed my allergies.  

      One night a friend of mine posted on facebook, "We are looking for a VERY good home for our cat, Zoe. She is just not receiving the attention that she so very much wants. She is very much a "people" cat. Please message me if you know of anybody who would be interested. It makes me very sad to part with her, but I know there are people out there who would give her so much love."

      I don't know what came over me next but I asked her how old she was.  I told her about the kids begging us for a pet, me thinking I was allergic, then having a doctor here tell me I'm not allergic to anything (which is know is not true).  I suggested that maybe she hang out with us for a day or two so I could see.

      I mentioned it to Dave and he was shocked that I was even considering it.  He suggested that the kids and I go over to Kristy's house to meet her and to see how to clean out the litter box and all of that good stuff because that would be their responsibility should we get a cat.  

      So, a few days later, we went and met her and visited with her a bit.  Then a few days after that, we went back for Grace to clean out the litter box and learn how to care for a cat.  Kristy was going out of town and suggested that we take her and cat sit and it would just be on a trial basis. So, we brought her home on Thursday, March 10th on a trial basis.  It's now two weeks later and Zoe is still here.  

      She was very nervous at first and hid for the first 2 days.  She even hissed and nipped at me once but I was rubbing her belly which I have since learned that cats do not like to have their bellies rubbed.  But after a couple of days of being nervous and hiding, she came out and started to explore things and us and now she seems right at home.  She loves Dave and Grace and even me too a little.  I think she is unsure of Zachary the most but he is being very gentle with her and working to earn her trust and love.  

      I love these first couple of pictures of Zachary with her.  He had just gotten out of the bathtub and she followed him to his room where he got a book and sat down and read her a story. She just laid there beside him while he read.

      And this is a great one of Grace and Zoe!  She looks huge in this picture and is really not this big but she is a beautiful girl!  If it's okay with Kristy, it looks as if we may be welcoming Zoe to our family.

      Book Club

      My monthly book club meets in the morning.  We just finished reading and will be discussing The Last Child by John Hart.  I highly recommend this book if you haven't read it.  You will not want to lay it down so it is definitely a quick read and a page turner!  I can't wait to discuss it in the morning with everyone.

      The books that we are going to be choosing from to read next are Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand, The Devil in Pew Number Seven by Rebecca Nichols Alonzo and Leaving Mother Lake: A Girlhood at the Edge of the World by Yang Erche Namu.  Have you read any of these?  If so, what are your thoughts and which one would you recommend?  Leave me a comment and let me know.

      So Proud

      I am so proud of Grace and I just have to share.  Today she came home from school and showed me some things that she got to choose from the leader's board.  I asked her what they were for and she said for being trustworthy, giving a compliment and fairness.  Her teacher either overheard or saw Grace being a great leader and being kind to others then rewarded her for her good behavior.  Dave and I are both so proud of her.  We have been teaching both she and Zachary about being kind to others and everyday before Dave leaves for work, he kisses them goodbye and reminds them to focus, concentrate, participate and give compliments.  I think our teaching them is paying off.

      Cata-What?

      Zachary has been learning about simple machines in class and he had a project where he had to make a catapult.  Each child was to make a catapult and then they were going to have a big launching of the catapults to see how they all work.  So, we did a little research on how to make a catapult and Dave found a video that showed exactly how to make one.  You were supposed to make it with household items and we probably had most of these things if I had taken the time to dig around for them but it was easier for me to go and buy them. So, I purchased the supplies (rubber bands, craft sticks or Popsicle sticks, rubber bands, clothes pins, butterfly clips and tape) and last night they sat down to make their catapult. 

      First Zachary watched the video so he could get an idea of what he had to do.  Then he and Grace laid out all of their supplies and then they all worked together and step by step built a catapult.





      Trying it out for the first time with a rubber ball.
      And it launches!
      Today, Zachary very carefully took his catapult to school and Dave and I went at the appropriate time to watch the launching.  Four classes participated so they would pull a couple of kids from each class.  They were given 2 or 3 ping pong balls and Mrs. Hunnicutt would walk by pulling a wagon and they would try and launch their ping pong ball in the wagon.  Zach's did great!  He actually hit Mrs. Hunnicutt one time and the other time his ball hit the side of the wagon.  He was so serious about it all!
      Waiting his turn...
      Just testing it out..
      Watching Mrs. Hunnicutt and trying to time it just right.


      And we have air!
      Way to go Zachary!  Job well done!

      Like My New Blog Look?

      I haven't blogged in a little while and that's another post in itself but I wanted to let you all see my new blog layout.  In the past, I was always playing around with my blog, adding this or that, not really knowing what I was doing but enjoying it just the same.  I would see other peoples blogs and like the little touches that they had but never I never wanted to pay someone to design my blog for me.  It was good enough the way it was.

      Well, my friend Amber, did a really selfless and awesome thing over on her blog, Goodnight Moon.  She held a raffle for a little boy who has been diagnosed with cancer and if you donated money for Logan, your name went in the drawing for all the awesome things that she was giving away.  And I won!  I won the free blog design!  Woo hoo!  This was all created by Melissa over at Mr., Mrs, & Little Miss.  She was great and very patient with me as I went back and forth getting her to tweak things.  Thank you Melissa!

      Hopefully now that I have this new layout, I will be excited about blogging again and get back into it.  So, till the next post......have a great hump day!

      Sunday, March 20, 2011

      Why Can't People Drive?

      Yesterday as we were coming home from Sam's Club, there was a man in a vehicle right behind us tailing us.  We obviously were not going fast enough for him but Dave had the cruise control on and we were going about 5 mph above the speed limit and we were in the right hand lane.  This man then proceeded to pull into the left PASSING lane to pass us; no problem there, but then he gets back over into the right hand lane in front of us.  Now remember, I said Dave had the cruise control on so our speed had not changed.  But this man pulls over in front of us and slows down!  He slowed down to the point that Dave had to hit the brakes to take it off of cruise.  Why?  Why did he have to get right in front of us and then slow down?  Why can't people drive?  Why can't they go a constant speed?  Cruise control people!  It's really easy to use.  I guess you can tell that is a pet peeve of mine and it's actually as big a pet peeve for Dave as it is for me, if not bigger!

      Want to know another one of our driving pet peeves?  And this one drives me crazier than people not going a constant speed.  People who get in the left hand lane, which is for passing, and just go their merry way.  Doesn't matter if they are going fast, going slow, going the speed limit.  They are just over there driving without a clue that that lane is for passing.  Do they ever wonder why they have a line of cars behind them trying to get somewhere?  It's because you are in the passing lane but only going 55 mph!  It clearly states in the North Carolina Driver's Handbook, Division of Motor Vehicles of the North Carolina Department of Transportation, Chapter 4, page 62, "Keep to the right, use the left lane(s) for passing;".  My guess is that it states this in every state's driver's handbook.

      Chapter 4 — Your Driving
      • When entering the interstate, use the acceleration lane until your vehicle’s speed matches that of the other traffic and then merge safely;
      • Keep to the right, use the left lane(s) for passing;


      We went to Wilmington not too long ago and it's a four lane highway the entire way.  I was driving and I set the cruise about 4-5 mph more than the speed limit.  And for almost the entire way, I was behind someone that was going slower than me but I could not pass because the person driving in the left hand lane was going the same speed as the person in the right hand lane, completely oblivious to the rules of the road.

      Please, please I beg you.  If you are reading this and you are one of those people that drive in the left hand lane all of the time, please move over.  The right hand lane is for driving, the left lane is for passing.



      Thursday, March 17, 2011

      Gourmet Club's Big Fat Greek Wedding

      Today was our last regular monthly luncheon of this year's Gourmet Club and the theme was My Big Fat Greek Wedding.  I was a cook again this month but was in charge of something that was way easier than last month, Rosemary White Bean Soup.  Unfortunately, it was just so-so in my opinion but everything else was delicious!  

      Our menu: 
      Keftethakia (Greek Meatballs) 
      Tzatziki Sauce 
      Dolmathes (Stuffed Grape Leaves)
      Hummus with Sundried Tomatoes
      Greek Village Salad
      Rosemary White Bean Soup
      Kotopita with Avgolemeno Sauce (Phyllo-wrapped Chicken with Egg-Lemon Sauce) served with Broccolini
      Walnut Cake - Karidopita Recipe
      Baklava
      Grecian Holiday

      Our host, Connie, was able to give us lots of insight at our planning meeting as she is Greek American and several of the recipes were her family's recipes.  She decorated her home beautifully and went with more of a rustic Greek theme with a simple centerpiece of lemons.  She actually made the Baklava that was served and was also our take-away and it was probably the best Baklava I've ever tasted!  Yummy!



      Connie, our host, and Megan and Stacy

      Cooks and host - Stacy, me, Laurie, Megan, Charity and Connie
      Appetizer table



      In a way, I'm sad that Gourmet Club is winding down.  We have one more get-together where we all meet at one house and everyone brings a dish, and after that I may be hanging up my Gourmet Club hat. It's fun but it's also hard-work.  I'm thinking of maybe just being a sub next year so I don't have the commitment of having to host or cook.  I will still be able to enjoy the good food every now and then but with allot less stress.  We'll see........