16 November 2007


I am wondering why links I post don't show up as links. Hmmm.

I'm a dork

You Scored an A
You got 10/10 questions correct.
It's pretty obvious that you don't make basic grammatical errors.If anything, you're annoyed when people make simple mistakes on their blogs.As far as people with bad grammar go, you know they're only human.And it's humanity and its current condition that truly disturb you sometimes.
http://www.blogthings.com/theitsitstheretheirtheyrequiz/">The It's Its There Their They're Quiz

Found a link to some fun quizzes that ate up too much of my afternoon, but they were still fun :) It's Friday, hooray! It looks to be a fairly quiet weekend; we only have soccer games tomorrow, winter coat shopping, and dinner with some of the inlaws Sunday. It's cold and grey out, the perfect weather to stay holed up at home, watching movies in front of the fireplace.

13 November 2007

Forgot to add....

a great link I saw posted on a message board that I used to post on, but now I just read it and don't post anymore.  

Here's the link...it's a fun game and it's for a good cause :


I really liked the board....a great group of ladies on it, but I just never felt like I fit in the group.  They've all known each other, obviously, for years and I just felt like an outsider.  Oh well.  I still read the board, pray for them and their intentions, but I haven't posted in a couple of months, at least.  

Anyway, this wasn't going to be about the message board, it's about the link.  If you're a word geek like me, it will be hard to stop this game.  And every word you get right equals rice for a United Nations feed the hungry program.  

I'm spending the day studying....I have a math exam tomorrow and a paper due tomorrow, and geology homework due Friday, plus a quiz over the weekend.  Have I mentioned how glad I will be when this quarter is over?  

12 November 2007

Holy Cow!

It's been almost a month since I wrote anything!  I've been very very busy, and I think that the hectic pace is here to stay.  School has been keeping me incredibly busy and stressed out and the spousal unit was away for 10 days.  He was on what is called a 'fini' flight....his last military mission.  He got a sweet trip for it too, he went to Hawaii for those 10 days.  They flew shuttles between the islands for the Marines, but still...

While he was gone, I hardly ever sat down.  Honestly.  There were things going on with the kids every day, and because I didn't have anything else to do Saturday mornings, I signed the older two boys up for indoor soccer.  They really seem to love it so far....and it is so cute to watch little kids play soccer!  Seth's team is older and a little more experienced; it's more competitive.  Lucas's teammates are younger but most everyone has played soccer before.  My kids have not, but they are learning quickly.  

Well, I had parent teacher conferences last week too, and after discussing it with his teacher, we are looking into evaluating Seth for ADD/ADHD.   He just isn't outgrowing the behaviors that make it hard for him to settle down and focus on his work....he cannot sit still at his desk or at the dinner table.  I don't want to label him and drug him; more than one doctor or professional is going to have to work to convince me of that.  But I know something isn't quite right.  I think Seth is incredibly bright; his troubles aren't academic.  His teacher agrees that he is a very bright little boy.  But socially he's awkward, a little bit, and he's just so off into what is going on inside his head, that he is oblivious to what is going on around him, in the real world. I've ordered a book recommended by a friend, called "The Einstein Syndrome" to see what it says.  He matches the description of the children the author talks about....late talker, late potty trainer, very intelligent, very strong willed....I just want to see what it says.  I want to educate myself and be a good advocate for my son.  If he is ADD/ADHD, I just want to get him whatever help he needs to succeed.  And if he isn't, or if I am not convinced that he is, I need to be able to advocate for him and work to find alternate solutions to the challenges he is creating for his teacher and for himself.  
That is part of the reason I signed him up for soccer.  He said he wanted to play, but I also thought it would be good for him to do something physical, and to give him one more thing to have in common with the other kids in his class.  The other boys on the team are all in his class, and I wonder how much he really has in common with them.  He is always the kid who is playing by himself at recess because he doesn't like football.  It makes me sad to think of him being sort of a loner....I don't think he is necessarily an outcast, but I think he separates himself from the group.  

A lot of that is probably my own insecurity.   I was a social misfit in school and I don't want to see my kids suffer the same fate.   So, he is to be observed by the school psychologist and we go from there.  We also have a consult set up with the ped, and we just see what happens.  

Matt and I didn't exactly see eye to eye while he was away either.  There are lots of reasons for it, but in ten days, he called three times.  It's just one of those things when some days are better than others.  We have our issues certainly, like any other couple that has been together for any real length of time.  I didn't want to ruin his last trip by calling or emailing to pick fights, which is how I think he would have seen it, but I was really mad that he was too busy hanging out with his crew, scuba diving and sightseeing to call his family.  He told the boys he would call them every day and I think they talked maybe twice.  He is back home now and it seems that there is something unsaid.  Like maybe there is something we should talk about but neither of us wants to be the first to say, "We should talk."  

I have a habit of reading way too much into things, so I could very likely be way out in left field.  It wouldn't be the first time. 

I've taken the day off from school but tomorrow I've got to hit it hard again.  Finals are in three weeks and I can hardly wait.  I still have some other stuff to do in the meantime also.  I'm barely keeping my head above water, but I'm sure trying!  Lord, please help me through these last few weeks of school!  I'll have almost a month off for the holidays so when winter quarter rolls around, I'll be more ready.  I think.  

18 October 2007

School is killing me

School is seriously killing me this quarter. I'm taking three classes, two of which are online. The mistake that I made was taking hard subjects online. You really have to be disciplined to take the time to do the work, when you can do it any old time. You can always say, well I'll do it later....after the kids are in bed....when they get on the bus....later this weekend....there's always later. Then your midterms crop up and you're like, oh crap, I didn't really work as hard as I should have!

History is, of course, my favorite class and the one I am doing the best in. It's a lot of work and I am studying topics I haven't studied before, which is interesting and thought provoking. Math and science, are hard for me, not really very interesting to me and I just don't get it. So, naturally, I am almost failing both of those classes.

I am amazed at how school and my attitude about it is invading my life. I'm constantly grumpy, it seems, and I think it's because I hate school this quarter. I need to do these classes and fill the squares on my checklist of credits I need to graduate but I HATE THEM.

I came very close to withdrawing from one of them, but then I talked to the professor, and I thought about it, and I decided to stick it out, at least for a couple more weeks. If my kid came to me with this problem, I would probably advise them to keep working at it and see if things get better. So I decided to follow my own advice. The deadline for withdrawal isn't till 15 November. I'm already halfway through, so it's like I would have done the work for nothing, and I won't get any refund for the quarter. So...I've already paid (a LOT!) for school, and I've already put a lot of work in....I'm going to keep trying.

Come on, December! Finals week is the first week of December....then it will be over :)

13 October 2007

Thriving on Chaos

I apparently thrive on chaos.

I haven't posted anything in several days, because I've been out of town participating in an exercise with my military unit. The exercise began the moment we stepped off the plane. Actually, the fun began well before that. We reported at 1:00 pm. Got on the bus to out process at 2:00pm. Got to the terminal, after having gone through our chemical gear bags to make sure everything was there, at about 4:30 or so. I started to lose track of time so I can't be sure about that. We were supposed to take off at 9:50pm, but the aircraft was broke, so we waited around for it to be fixed. We actually took off at 1:30am. Got to Mississippi around 3:30, and then went for all of our briefings on how the exercise was going to go, and what we needed to do. After that, we took our bags to our rooms, then went to fill and sling sandbags for a while, and then had breakfast. The first opportunity to sleep came around 10:00 that morning. Ugh.

I worked nights with some great guys from my work section, so at least being with people who are fun to hang out with made it suck a little less. We worked 6p-6a and that first day, I honestly did not get out of bed all day. All day. Anyway, the rest of the exercise passed and things were fine, relatively speaking. We had fun and laughed when we could, worked hard, and we went home five days later. Exhausted.

Then, for me, the chaos continued. Matt left on a four day trip on Thursday and I was on my own with the kids. Getting back into the school day routine was tough, but fortunately the kids were off on Friday, so I only had to do it one day. So now, it's Saturday, and I'm trying to catch up mentally to where my body is. I have a ton of work for school that I need to turn in online this weekend, I need to get my house back in order, finish laundry, feed the kids, oh yeah I think we're supposed to go to a party tonight (!), and I want to get to the mall to get a gift for a friend who just had a baby. Always something to do.

Next week, there is something going on every night. Every single night.

I need a little bit of downtime!! Come on, Monday morning...when the kids go back to school. And the funny thing is, if things were quiet and there was nothing going on, I'd probably be complaining that I was bored and needed a little activity in my life.

I SO did not want to go on this exercise. And I don't particularly want to go on the inspection that the exercise was a dress rehearsal for. I will go, and I will do my best, because that is what I do, and that is what is expected of me. But WANT to? Nah. My fear is that a circumstance that is way beyond my control, and way above my pay grade, is going to bite me during the inspection, and my unit will get a black mark because of it. It is entirely too complicated to write out here but it relates directly to me. It affects me but I can't control it. The General doesn't care very much about what I do but he will care a great deal when he gets a black mark on the inspection grade card because of my office. I, and the other person in my office, have been trying to fix it the best we can for the last year or so, to no avail. But I just know that when it comes up during the inspection, I will be the one to take the fall for 'dropping the ball.' There are things you can control, and things you can't.

But still and all, I'm proud of myself for going outside of my comfort zone and doing things that I didn't think I could.

I've got to run, the coffee is done brewing. I'm going to need it; it's another day of running hard.

30 September 2007

Hero Worship, Fat and Political Correctness

Man, I am beat. The boys and I spent the weekend visiting my family in Columbus. Matt was in a giant airshow at Rickenbacker, and so we went to Aunt Chris's house for the weekend. We went to the airshow on Saturday and the kids thought that they were such big stuff, because they got to go up to the flight deck and no one else did. Perks of being the pilot's kids. Kids were asking Matt for his autograph, which my sisters both got such a kick out of. They said they didn't know that their brother in law was a celebrity ;)

Today Matt got to meet a guy who is an honest to goodness war hero...a double ace from World War II. He sounded like a jazzed-up little kid on the phone when he was telling me about meeting him. Which got me thinking.....I never got into hero worship as a kid, not the way some kids idolize sports stars, or music stars, or pilots, or doctors or whatever. Idolizing someone who does the thing you want to do when you grow up. I don't hero worship now. There are people who would be really awesome to meet, but I don't know what I would ever say to them. I walked through the WASP (Womens Airforce Service Pilots) tent at the airshow, and while I think those women are fabulous and truly made history, I wouldn't have a clue what to say to any of them. They were signing books and lots of people didn't wonder at all what to say. Am I just strange? Wait, don't answer that....

Matt was talking about meeting the ace and how he was stumbling all over himself and my first thought was, "Well, what did you say to him?" What would you say? He could barely contain himself. And he's a grown man! Most of the time.....;)

That's the random thought that kept coming back to me today.

Oh, and here's another one. My sister thinks she is fat. I disagree, but whatever. Which kind of ties back into my previous post, but I digress. None of us is perfect looking....maybe she could lose a few pounds, but she's not FAT, like she thinks she is. She's always down on herself and worrying about what she's eating....how she's doing on her diet, etc. Well today, we were at lunch, waiting for a table, and Lucas said something about her belly. I don't know, I didn't hear all of it, but she said,"That's just Aunt Chris's fat belly," making fun of herself and laughing about it. I told her the same thing I always tell her, that I think she is way too hard on herself. But then we dropped it and I didn't give it any more thought.

Tonight when he getting out of the bathtub, Lucas stuck his belly out really far and said,"Look, Mom, I'm fat." That is when it started to bother me a little bit. So we talked a little bit about fat, what fat is, what it means to be fat, and if it's ok to say someone is fat. I told them that we all need to have fat on our bodies, that it helps our bodies do different things. But then I also said that too much fat isn't healthy. I said that some people are too heavy and that isn't healthy, but that it is rude and hurtful to call someone fat, and it's never ok to say mean things to hurt people's feelings. But I hate that my seven year old (who is literally skin and bones) and my five year old (who is solid and stocky) are even thinking about such things.

Am I pandering at the altar of political correctness, to tell my kids that it is rude and hurtful to say that someone is fat, even if they really are? Can we not call a spade a spade? I was called fat plenty of times as a kid....my nickname was "Elsie." As in, the Borden cow. My own father told me that I was the only "fat broad" in our family. This is when I was about 145-150 pounds...I am 5'6". Not skinny-minnie, but not morbidly obese either. Just for some perspective. That doesn't change that "fat" definitely has a negative connotation and it hurts people's feelings, though.

Someone once told me that political correctness is a form of intellectual terrorism. I agree for the most part. We all need to grow a thicker skin, I think, and learn to get over our differences. But we also can't have people saying whatever thought comes to mind, about whoever they please, without any kind of filtering process going on. Words only have as much power as we give them. Where do we draw a line?

27 September 2007

What I am pondering today

Did you ever know someone who had an opinion of you that differed dramatically from how you see yourself? Like someone else thinks you are the best thing since sliced bread, smarter than Einstein, better looking than Cindy Crawford? Or someone whose standards you never quite measured up to? And they push their opinion on you, trying to MAKE you see yourself in a different light?

Is it more important to try to see yourself as you really believe you are, or does what other people think matter more? Is perception everything? Is what other people see the real truth? I mean, obviously there are some people in the world who have terrible self esteem and think very poorly of themselves. But I just mean, by and large, people who have pretty realistic assessments of themselves...is it possible that how others see you is closer to the real truth of who you are? People who know you well, not just casual acquaintances or people who know you very superficially, I mean.

Example : my husband thinks I'm hot. Which is good :) But he tells me I'm hot often, and I SO don't agree with him. I think I'm reasonably attractive, but not Hottie McHott Hott. Should I take him at his word? Yes, yes, I am Hottie McHott Hott. Thanks for noticing :::come hither smile::: Check me out. I'm ready for my close-up. Or is my assessment of myself more accurate?

Another good friend of mine, and colleague at work, thinks I am the epitome of academic excellence. Unfortunately, this friend does not have any influence whatsoever over my grades at University of Cincinnati ;) He thinks I write like a dream, I have razor sharp insight and am head and shoulders above the rest. Any professor who doesn't see my genius is blind (tongue very much in cheek). I think I'm reasonably intelligent and I am proud of much of what I have written. I work hard to write a quality product for the publications that I write for, and my military work hinges on my writing skills. I think I'm pretty good at what I do. I also think I deserved the bad grade I got last night on a paper....it clearly wasn't my best work.
Who do I believe? Am I being hard on myself? Am I really that good?

Growing up, I was told I'd never amount to much. That I'd be a wife and a mother because that is what I was capable of. Not that there is anything wrong with wifehood and motherhood...far from it. I am proud and glad to be those things. But to be told not to dream big dreams, because I'd never make it anyway....shoot for something attainable, like getting married and having babies, because that is what women do.

Whose assessment is right? Does it matter?

26 September 2007

New to this blogging thing

You may be wondering..."A Good Joe?" My oldest son, Seth, LOVES Looney Tunes cartoons. LOVES them. One night after he had watched cartoons before bed, he told me, "Mommy, I love you. You're a good joe."

Apparently Yosemite Sam thought Bugs Bunny was "a good joe" at some point in the cartoon.

This is high praise indeed from a three year old. Hey, I'll take what I can get!

That three year old is now seven, and in second grade. Lucas, the proverbial (and literal) middle child started Kindergarten this year and just turned five, and little man Conner will be three shortly. He is at home with me for a couple more years.

I am married to a travelin' man, and it'll be eleven years next month. Some ups, some downs and some crossroads. Marriage, over the long haul, is a lot harder than it sounds when you're wearing the pretty dress and you've got the stars in your eyes. But so far, it's worth the effort. Some days are better than others.

I am a jack (jill?) of all trades, and master (mistress?) of none. I am a Catholic stay at home mom, I go to school, I am a military reservist, I am a freelance writer, I am a runner, I scrapbook and make cards, I am an avid reader, and I am one of the room moms for Lucas's Kindergarten class. I really hope to finish my undergrad degree by the time I turn 40. That sounds so far away to me, and yet it really isn't. Just a few years to go. Maybe I'll even get that Masters degree I've been mentally kicking around....

I will have to wait and see what my life looks like in a couple years. If I have learned anything, it's that life happens while you are busy making other plans. The end result of that lesson, for me, is that I don't make a lot of plans :)

My prayer each day is that God will light the way for me to do the next right thing. A friend of mine once told me, that is all you have to do, at any given moment, in any given day....just do the next right thing.