Friday, September 25, 2009

Productivity Central

Thanks to our little trip ending Monday this has been the Longest. Week. Ever.

It has ALSO been the most productive in a very, very long time!

Just because it makes me feel good about myself I will now give a short run down of only SOME of my accomplishments:

-- Shopped for and purchased next size up car seat for Dave
-- Replaced tires on the Tempo
-- Branded, produced and printed advertising for upcoming PWOC retreat
-- Attended Tuesday morning Bible study
-- Attended Wednesday morning PWOC
-- Organized and printed publicity stuff for PWOC board meeting
-- Organized church care package drive and printed supplies
-- Made PWOC and care package drive advertising boards
-- Switched out all of Dave's clothes with the next size up
-- Fetched Abigail from the airport
-- Took Dave to the park to ride on the swing for this first time
-- Went on multiple walks
-- Bought tickets to Idaho for Thanksgiving
-- Hung frames I've been meaning to hang

... and more! And there's one more whole day left in the week! And all of this with a sick kid. That's right, Dave was sick for the First Time Ever this week. Stupid plane gave him a cold. He's much better now, but I'll spare you the details on the snot.

And now I'm exhausted. I swear I had more to say but I'm so zonked I can't remember what it is. So, until later -- goodnight and good luck... or ... something.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Home again, home again

Now that I've used my Super Mommy Mind Powers to convince our 26" long friend to take a nap, I have found a moment of peace to write here.

We returned home this morning on a direct flight from Dulles. We took a 0825 direct flight and landed in Seattle at 1100, gaining three hours in the process and making this, after a 0515 wake up time, officially the LONGEST DAY EVER.

HOW is it only 2:30 p.m.?!?!*

We have a busy week ahead of us. Tomorrow FBC starts its Tuesday morning Bible study back up which I can now attend thanks to our lovely chaplain's wife, Charlene, moving the battalion study to Thursday morning. Wednesday is PWOC fun, Thursday is a memorial service (instead of Bible study this week) and Friday ... well, maybe I'll take Friday to recover from the craziness of the last three or four weeks. We'll see.

(As it turns out the newcomers orientation thing that I thought I had to do tomorrow is next week instead. Phew. I was so not into that).

Meanwhile today I must still go to the grocery store and probably Target or Office Max to run some PWOC related errands while fixing the fact that I have zero food in my house. OK, zero may be a bit of an overstatement -- I have SOME food. But nothing that I want to eat.

*note how I switch freely between military time and normal person time. Crazy, I know.

I sat next to a man on the plane today who was coming home for a two week break from Afghanistan Fun. He is over there for a year as a contractor after the Army medically discharged him last year for being completely deaf in one ear thanks to some sort of Not Cool explosion.

It was neat to talk to him about Afghanistan, and I enjoyed all the warm fuzzy feelings I got thinking about how Luke will come home in a few months and sit next to someone on the plane who will hopefully be as happy for him as I was for this guy.

Incidentally, the deaf ear was the side on which we were sitting. This was good for him because David SCREAMED HIS HEAD OFF for the last 20 minutes of the flight. I think the poor little guy's ears were hurting.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

For Public Consumption

The time has come to advertise.

For many of you this is the first time ever viewing this blog. That is because this is the first time I've ever bothered to really tell anyone about it. Back in the day I kept a blog over on xanga where I had many friendly (and not so friendly) stalkers reading about my days and adventures. It was a hoot.

But then I got tired of all the hoo-rah-rah and decided to close the drama shop over there while I sneaky-like opened a new place in Blogger land.

It's been more than a year since I fooled (some of) you into thinking I'm not blogging anymore. I think it's about time to announce it to the world once more.

Here I am! Tada!

Let's see ... since I ran away from you a variety of interesting things have happened. A quick run-down:

- I got married. That was super fun.
- I had a baby. Not as fun as getting married, but now that the having part is over, it's awesome.
- Luke deployed. That one really sucks, but I'm learning a lot.

And that's really all the news that's fit to print.

If you choose to follow this blog or, at the very least, stalk me occasionally, keep in mind two things:

1. We are not really that interesting, so please reconsider. If you decide to keep reading keep in mind that I am not your average, run of the mill Army wife -- I've got a radical, life changing God in my corner. Craziness is bound to ensue.
2. This blog tends to be a dump for a gamut of things that are, at turns, interesting, sundry, boring and emotional. It's best not to assume you know me as a person based only on what you see here. I am attempting these days to be better about not only tossing on my most trying moments but, please, keep in mind that my using this as a brain and heart dump is not only bound to happen eventually, but is my prerogative. Judge not.


Friday, September 18, 2009


Yesterday I decided to forgo my plans to see the Newseum (and on the free, too! Sad) in the name of letting Dave take a series of very much needed naps. He ended up sleeping more during the day yesterday than he has for many weeks. I guess he needed it.

He is getting to be suuuuch a big boy -- five months next week! Isn't that crazy? And he's becoming quite the little person. I can now put him in his bed and will him into taking a nap -- it's like we've developed an understanding. He knows that I am NOT going to come get him, so he might as well just sleep.


I would post a little photo action of our D.C. time, but alas I did not bring our camera cord with us. So you'll just have to wait until we get home. Instead, I give you this:

That was taken just before we left for D.C. ... that gives a general idea of how my little monkey man is looking these days. Isn't he cute?!

This afternoon we will spend some more time hanging out at Ebs (one can never ever spend TOO much time hanging out at Ebs), followed by a little visit to the Jefferson (location of Where Luke First Said "I Love You." Sentimental, much?). We started the day visiting Aimee (at Ebs, duh) and then did lunch out at TWT (where my former editor was wearing a Christmas tie. Yes, in September. I know!).

We head home Monday morning. Honestly? I'm ready. Only because I miss my stuff and my friends and all the home-ness of it. I love Love LOVE being here ... but yes, we are ready to go home. I also have a ton-o stuff to do next week. A sampling:

-- Newcomers orientation pitch Tuesday morning
-- PWOC Wednesday morning including a presentation that I must prepare for Tuesday
-- Memorial service Thursday for two guys in a sister battalion
-- Organize a box drive at church for our battalion
-- Plan and get invitations for a dinner party I plan to throw the end of October
-- Mail Luke a box that I have sitting in my house awaiting my arrival back home

You get the idea.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


D.C. is my place of dreams.

Whenever I am here I am inspired to try bigger, go farther and have faith a little more. Maybe it's my history here -- this is the place that I really found myself as a Christian and a believer. Sure, I was a Christian before I got here, but it was while in this place that I figured out what that really, truly means and the sacrifice and, well, dangerous, uncertain living that requires.

If there was ever something dangerous and uncertain, it's the Army life. At least our friends in the civilian world can convince themselves that they have some measure of control over their day-to-day and five-year-plan. But those of us relying on the Army for our bread and butter know better than to even subscribe to such a notion. We know that all the planning in the world will not make the Army have us do what we want (hint: not move to Alaska. Ever.).

And so I find myself here, back in the dreaming stage -- the stage of "what if?" and "do I have the faith?" and "do I love God enough to be willing to live on the the edge of reason? Am I willing to do whatever?" (Because it's not really about DOING the whatever -- sometimes that's the easy part! It's about being WILLING.)

My [someday in person] friend Tabitha put up a great post today on this subject ... I encourage you to read it here. Obedience is how we really love God. ...

This morning I had a fantastic meeting with Heather Zemple, one of the pastors at my D.C. church NCC. While I caught her up on our Crazy Army Life, what we are doing in ministry and our "plans" for the future, I got the dreaming spark again. I am freshly excited about the adventure of serving God and what that means now and down the road. I'm excited about the learning process. I'm excited about the journey.

And I'm excited about Luke coming home and sharing these things with me.

We are in D.C. just a few more days. This trip has seemed long and short at the same moment. Today we're taking a bit of a break and mostly chilling back at Hyla's so Dave (aka Mr. Cranky Pants) can get a few good naps in. (Oh, um, and I may have joined him in one of those, haha). This evening I'm going to try and catch up with a friend at Ebs (funny story about that later) and go to dinner at Bistro with Hyla (or special dinner place... so excited!)

Monday, September 14, 2009


This post brought to you from my favorite seat in Ebenezers at 2nd and F Street NE. I used to hang out in this seat every morning blogging and jounrnaling and contemplating both work and, more importantly, where I was headed in this great big world.

And here I am, baby in tow.

We heard a really phenomenal sermon by Pastor Mark on Saturday night -- lots of things to think about in terms of life sacrifice and what we are willing to give up to gain the Kingdom of God. ..

"Someone once said that the problem with being a living sacrifice is that you can get up and walk off the alter."

I am always afraid when coming back here that I will somehow regret my decision to leave in the first place. I am afraid that I will be sorry that I accepted living sacrifice status and, like Pastor Mark said, get up and walk off the alter. "Excuse me, my bad. I think I'll go home now."

That morning so long ago that I dropped my keys on the floor of the 10th street house and left on my big new adventure I was actually giving up my plans as I had thus far known them. Thus far I have not regretted that decision ... but coming back to this place always presents the possibility of that happening.

I am happy to report that, so far at least, those feelings have not come about.

In other news, D.C. is wonderful -- and wonderfully weird, as usual. Spotted last night: a half naked man with what looked like a miner's light strapped to his forehead taking out the trash.

I should also note, while I'm talking about weird things, that both best friends on both sides of the country have randomly experienced smelly refrigerators in the recent past. As I am the only thing that links these two people I want to go ahead and state that I am responsible for neither Hyla's nor Abigail's really smelly incidents. Just for the record.

Tonight: Generous George's with Tricia! Woo hoo!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Home Sweet Home ... or ...?

Being back in D.C. is kind of surreal. Nothing here ever changes -- the streets get more potholes and the faces are different (to some extent) but as far as the feel and look of the city, it's all the same and has been for a very long time.

And so coming home to here feels good because it still feels like home. I love this city and its feel -- the busy busy of everyone, the constant politics on the radio and the fact that from the moment I set foot in its borders I suddenly cared again about what was going on in the House/Senate. Things I didn't give a moment's thought to in Seattle (because it was easy to ignore) are suddenly at the front of my attention - Senators, Congressmen and the political drama I so used to love.

I spent today visiting hospitals. I started at Walter Reed only to discover that one of the guys had been transfered to another hospital because his wife had gone into labor. So I dropped off cards for solider number one then went to Bethesda with cards and baby gifts for soldier number two and his wife.

It was neat (and the Naval Hospital is swanky! Compared to MAMC that place is really styling. Remind to have a baby there instead next time).

After our Naval Hospital Adventure (where we ran into Dana's husband ... oh and we saw Dana yesterday! That was super fun. Baby Bella is a cutie. We ate Five Guys (duh?) and went and saw a Truly Terrible Movie called All About Steve. Dont. See. It. I think I actually LOST intelligence while watching it) I drove down to Ebs so I could bump into the church staff. That was fun ... and the home I came.

And now I am tired.

Veeka is being a super great kid. We dropped her off for her school/daycare this morning and then picked her up at about 5 p.m., made dinner, watched her kiddo shows together and then, at about 7:20 p.m., she said "I'm going to sleep now," and had me take her to bed.


Now if only Baby Dave would sleep ...

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

From D.C.

Greetings from the Couch of Hyla.

That's right, I am back in the District -- and proud of it. We got in Saturday night, stayed with the Brooks, hung out with Nolan and Adiya and co. and then came over here (to Hyla's) yesterday afternoon.

All in all, a good 2.5 days.

This evening the real adventure starts -- Julia will pick us up at 4 p.m.ish, at which time we will head over to her place, get Veeka, eat dinner, go to bed (and stuff) ... and tomorrow take Julia to the airport and start our 4.5 days of Veeka care.

It'll be fun. I'm positive.

During this we also get to see Dana and Bella, visit Walter Reed to at least drop off some cards and do a spattering of other fun things. I'm excited.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Memorial Number One

Today was my first Army memorial service. I didn't really know what I was getting myself into. I can't actually remember the last time I was at a memorial service at all, much less an official Army one, so really I'm not experienced with this at all.

(Wait .. the last memorial I was at was Rosa Park's. Not even kidding. But I dont think that counts).

I was expecting it to be emotional. I was expecting it to be hard. I expected to cry.

It pretty much lived up to all my expectations, so there's that.

So, since you're wondering, here's how it went:

We all sat down. They played music for awhile. The rear chaplain prayed. The rear-d read statements about the two guys the service was for. Two enlisted guys made separate statements about the guys. ...

And then the rear-d read a statement spoken by the Col. at the guy's memorial service Over There, including about how the guys spent hours "finding" the people who died (... they died via IED so you and I can both guess what this "finding" and "searching" involved). He reminded us why we are fighting and how not everyone is going to come home [this is when the crying started].

Next, the chaplain prayed again. And they did "last roll call" where a Sgt. took roll call, including the names of the guys who died, and of course they didn't answer so there was an obvious gap. [more crying here]. Next the bagpipers played Amazing Grace [LOTS of crying here all around], followed by the gun salute [crying crying crying] and taps [still, more crying].

And then -- and this was the part I didn't expect -- people went two by two (or so) up to the front where photos of the guys were placed in front of two pairs of boots, two guns and two helmets and stood for a few seconds. Starting with family and command and then all the way throughout the chapel row by row.

I didn't know either of these guys. But that was hard.

I determined today that, while I am in D.C., I will visit our boys at Walter Reed. We have three of them there right now, including the best friend of one of my friend's husbands. I am actually excited to be able to do this, even though I know it will be hard. I know that Luke would want me to (even though I came up with the idea on my own). I'm going to make them cookies or something and then head over there. Obviously they are pretty beat up or they wouldn't be there. But ... this will be good.

I am a do-er. I have to DO something or I feel vulnerable and helpless. If I can do something, no matter what it is, it's almost a little bit like I can control some of the situation (even though I can't).

It occurred to me today that, when I pray for Luke, I am almost approaching the situation as if all God can do is protect Luke from some big, evil out of control enemy. "God, PLEASE protect my husband from the danger." ... and in doing so I forget (through lack of acknowledgement if nothing else) that, in reality, God IS the danger, in some way. Not only does He control whether or not my husband and others get hurt, he controls the hurting. ... Does that distinction make sense?

By not actively acknowledging that God is not only in control of who gets hurt, but is control of the whole big thing I let fear in. ... fear that something, completely out of all control, will hurt me and those that I love.

The reality is that God is completely and totally in control of this whole thing. Yes, I should pray that He will put a hedge of protection around my husband and all of those involved -- but I also must remember that God is doing all of this for a reason, even though I don't have any idea what that reason is.

I just think that's a really important thing to remember. God is in control of this war. Nothing happens that He does not allow. And He will hear my prayers to save my husband from all of this.