Monthly Archives: May 2009

Proud Parent Moment

Last night my husband and I were invited to attend an awards ceremony at our local middle school.  As our youngest son was putting on his best church clothes, he asked several times if he HAD to go.  And I kept answering, yes, sweetie, you HAVE to go.  At 6:30, we were seated and the ceremony began.  The first awards presented were for the 6th grade students of the year.  Each grade is divived into teams, and the 450 or so 6th graders are divided into four teams.  The teachers got together and chose 2 boys and 2 girls from each team to be awarded.  Our son’s name was the first on the list on the program we received at the door.  So, as the announcer started at the bottom of the list, we waited with anticipation (and a little disappointment as he was supposed to be called up first) for his name to be announced, so we could cheer and clap for our wonderful child.  But, as it went, his name was not called – at all – and the announcer went on to the next list of award winners. 

That, however, did not stop someone from yelling out to the announcer from the back half of a full auditorium to wait, “You forgot my son!”  However, Ms. Announcer couldn’t see the raised arms waving at her through the blinding stage lights or hear the cries at the back of the auditorium.  So, my sweet husband started for the stage.  I wanted him to march right up there and tell her my baby was gonna get on that stage to get his award, that I did not get all dressed up and do my hair and make up for the second time that day just to sit there for an hour and a half while 200 other middle schoolers marched up to the stage to receive their pretty awards and while their 400 parents got to glow and cheer and take pictures of their children in their best church clothes on that stage receiving their awards and shaking hands with the principal and getting high fives and hugs from their teachers.  But he was probably a little nicer than that  because the next thing I knew it our son got a special recall and an apology and a huge applause (I even got a  “Good for you!” from the parent sitting behind me).  And as I fumbled with my camera and tears were streaming down my cheeks, my baby got awarded as a 6th Grade Student of the Year.

BTW, how coincidental is this?  My oldest son was Male Student of the Year in his 6th grade year (we were in Guam at the time), and our daughter was the Female Student of the Year in her 6th grade year as well (we had gotten to France half way through the school year and she was chosen!).

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The Weekend

The kids and I have had a very nice 3-day weekend.  Saturday started out going to the beach with a couple of the kids’ friends.  The water was freezing, but they managed to get used to it and floated on their boogie boards for a while.  The boys dug and built sand castles and buried my youngest.  I tossed the frisbee around with my oldest for a bit, stuck my toes in the freezing water and ran back to my chair screaming like a girl and then took up my book club read for the rest of the time. 

Yesterday, we just hung around the house.  It was nice to do basically nothing (well I did do a little bit of work on the computer).  We were a little wiped out from the sun.

Today, we went over to a friend’s house whose husband is deployed on a ship.  She lives on a lake – I want to move in with her.  The view was gorgeous.  The food was great (but I had too much and am now paying for it – lots of running scheduled for the week ahead).  Her 2 little boys are so cute.

Tomorrow, my husband comes home from his 2-week trip to Florida.  The house down there is just about ready for us.  It’s strange to think we’ll be moving into it in a month.  My husband had a couple of job interviews while he was there and now has to decide the path he wants to take after his military retirement.  I will be looking for a job once I get down there.  I’m trying to take it one step at a time.  I am known to get a little stressed at move time because I think about all that has to be done and I want it all done right.  We’ll get there, and it will be easier if I try to remain calm.

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Begin Again Again

Well, we got through all the closets and dressers in the house this past weekend, but now there is a mountain of clothes in the hallway that my kids have to climb over to get to their rooms.  Today, I guess I should clear the road, but I have discovered a new website and am getting sucked into it:  www.SparkPeople.com.  I am having a hard time with those pesky last 10 pounds.  After breaking my collar bone about a month before we left Guam (that was 4 years ago this month!), I had to pause my workouts.  Then we started a whole new routine with our next military post (as I will write about with our Paris experiences).  So I gained close to 20 pounds in about 2 years.  I have lost about 10 of them again since we’ve been back in the States and am determined to get rid of those last 10 and maybe a little more.  Basically, I just want to be in good shape – whatever weight that ends up being is fine.

Next project is going through the garage.  Maybe I’ll start on that one tomorrow…

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Cleaning House

I wrapped up our Experiences in Guam posts yesterday and have them all posted to that page now.  Soon I will start on our Experiences in Paris.  Since I don’t have copies of e-mails from that tour, I will have to wrack my brain before I can post anything.  Thankfully, it was our most recent move, so hopefully my brain won’t let me down too much.  I’m thinking about posting some pictures from our many adventures as well when I get the chance. 

My husband went to Florida yesterday to get our (temporary) new house ready for when we move in June…31 days ’til pack-out…  He’ll be gone for 2 weeks; he’s also got a military conference in Jacksonville he’s got to attend and a couple of job interviews.  While he’s working down there, I am planning a total clean-up and purging of our house here.  It is amazing how much stuff can accumulate in less than 2 years!  If the computer or I get buried in the process of cleaning and I can’t update my blog anytime soon, click on the tabs above if you missed reading about our first 2 overseas adventures in Japan and Guam.  When you’re done with that, click here for my other blog www.sorose.blogspot.com.  After that, I guess you’re on your own.  Have a great weekend!

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Orders From Guam

Continued from my previous post Welcome to Guam:  2002 (part 13).

“9/20/04: PARIS  !  !  !  YAHOO  !  !  !  (from G8r)”

” 9/20/04  (e-mail sent to G8r less than an hour prior from the person who coordinated his next orders):  RE:  French Foreign Service College  G8r, You are a “GO” for French War College February 2006.  DLI (Defense Language Institute – the military’s foreign language school in Monterey, CA) commences June/July 2005.  Need to absolutely confirm with you that these dates work with your situation/command?  Please confirm.  Thanks…Helo Shore Detailer”

These were the last copies of e-mails that I have in our notebook of Guam memories.  My husband returned from Iraq in January 2005, and we all left Guam in May to begin yet another adventure…on the other side of the globe.

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More on Storms, Sports, and School in Guam

Continued from my previous post Welcome to Guam:2002 (part 12).

“8/21/04 (e-mails from me to family back home in the US):  We’ve got a typhoon headed our way.  We have everything brought inside, shutters closed, and we’re hunkered down, yet once again.  The kids are all excited, but I am just dreading it.  I keep hoping that it will go north, but we’re gonna get something.  We’re enjoying the Olympics, when it comes on.  We get some live and some replays.  I’ve got laundry to do before electricity and water go out.  Love, SR”

8/24/04:  We were prleasantly surprised to be without power less than 24 hours this time.  The kids were happy to miss a day of school and reluctantly went back today with wind and rain.  Hopefully that will be gone soon.  Our yard is a mess, but nothing is broken so far.  Some of the island is still without power and water.  G8r is really busy working 14 hours a day, doing “cool” stuff.  He also moves around a lot.  Last week he was in a tent, this week he says he got lucky and is in a trailer with a bed.  He said the cots in the tents are hard on his shoulder (where he broke his collar bone…about 6 months earlier he had broken his collar bone and punctured his lung in a bike racing accident).  But next week he moves yet again to another tent.  He’s been there (Iraq) a month now, so 5 more to go.  Love you all, SR”

“9/15/04  Subject: Ivan (this was written during the time period when the 4 hurricanes – Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne – hit Florida ) Well, it looks like we escaped this one.  Unfortunately it is going to make landfall (if it turns more to the north – which is what the forecasters expect it to do) in about 36 hours at Pensacola.  It still has a nw path, and we are hoping that it goes on to Texas.  It has gotten weaker but is still a category 3, and that may change again also.  It can go up or down.  After it is all over if we need to go to Pensacola and check on your house, we can.  Everyone from Key West up on the west coast of Florida was very concerned, but Ivan kept on a nw course.  Really tore up Jamaica.  New Orleans is bracing, and if it makes landfall there they expect flooding up to about 20 feet.  That will put the entire city under water.  It has been quite a summer.  More later and love to all, Milly, Mama, Grandma”

“9/15/04:  RE:  Ivan  We’ve been watching on tv here; they seem to have much more coverage on your storms than on ours.  Thankfully we don’t have any right now.   The kids are all having fun playing flag football.  Mr DL’s position is quarterback mainly, and he loves it when his passes are caught; when they aren’t he gets frustrated.  Jay is playing several positions, qb, receiver, and seems to like them all.  Lulu is playing center; she gets to hike the ball.  I think she likes it, but I think she would also like to receive some too.  They’ve only played a couple games each, so there’s still more season to play.  They are all 3 in scouts again – liking it very much.  I got Jay pushed up to pre-algebra at school as I found out a few other 7th graders had been this year.  He is making an A+ so far this year, so I requested he be pushed ahead also.  He started that class today; I may need to help catch him up; we’ll see how it goes.  I am also campaigning for him to be in the gifted program.  If I had not actually gone up to the school several times so far this year to talk to the counselor, he wouldn’t even be considered.  I just don’t get it.  He was 1 of only 2 straight A students last year, and he was voted by all his teachers to be the male student of the year.  Now if that doesn’t say a lot there, why do I need to go up there and beg for him to be tested?  I’ve got chores to do, so better be off.  Love, SR”

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From Guam to Baghdad

Continued from my earlier post Welcome to Guam:  2002 (part 11).  While we were stationed in Guam, my husband got a free ticket to Iraq.  This was one of his first e-mails after arriving telling about the first of  the many places he lived and worked while there.

“8/1/04:  Home, This is a less than good place to live, but it is exciting.  I am getting more comfortable with living in an oven after stumbling around yesterday and the day before.  I tell you, walking around in this uniform in 115 degree heat while jet-lagging is an experience that I hope to never forget and never repeat.  The crazy thing is that the office that I work in is this spectacular Palace in the middle of a lake.  They keep the place so cold that many people have to wear their winter jackets and black knit covers to not freeze to death.  Some people even sleep by their desks in the palace.  Our encampment is not in the green zone as I had previously thought.  I am located at Camp Victory South.  It seemed huge the first day, but that was because I walked in circles to get places.  The dufus at billeting ripped the map off of my packet, so I wound up seeing this place three or four times more than I should have.  I am going to try to call you guys later; the phone center is on the other side of the encampment from the computer center.  Right now I do not have any computer access at the Palace because they are still processing my clearance.  Temperatures are unbelievable and should stay this way through September or October when the rains come in.  Someone told me yesterday that it really pours here, but he has never been to Guam.  I think I can handle it.  The mud may be a bit of a pain, but I look forward to the change of seasons.  Operations run pretty much 24/7 around here, so life moves quickly.  I haven’t officially started yet but should meet with my boss tomorrow to get rolling.  Until them I am getting my living situation set up.  Nine of us live in a tent surrounded by sand bags.  I have tons of room and am busy getting everything in order.  I got some cool red LED lights for creeping around in the morning.  I am all set.  More later, G8r”

Here’s another interesting one:

“8/8/04:  Yesterday I got to go to the Green Zone to brief two Major Generals.  We got all suited up in our Kevlar helmets and flak jackets and stood out in the heat to wait for our rides.  I expected to get HUMVEEs, but two Ford Explorers drove up and we loaded in.  It was weird.  We locked and loaded and drove to the green zone at Mach 5 blowing through local traffic, M-16s sticking out of the windows and our pistols in our laps.  I wonder what that looks like to the locals.  Baghdad is hot and miserable but so completely different that it was neat to see.  When I got to the green zone and Saddam’s big palace, it was truly awesome,  and I was envious of the people there.  We work 7 days a week, 14 hours a day, so to see those guys in the pool, playing music and barbequeing was strange.  I stood there in my flak jacket, drank my water and enjoyed the music while I watched a bunch of overweight tan foreigners walk around in bikini swimsuits and drinking beer.  Surreal…  G8r”

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