Thursday, May 31, 2012

From the mouths of little boys...

Ben, as he's wiping down the table in their playroom per my instructions: I don't want to get married when I grow up.
Hunter: I want to marry a hot babe.
Me: Why don't you want to get married, Ben?
Ben:  Because I don't want to have to do work.
Me: You'll still have work to do.  You'll have laundry, cleaning your home. Your wife won't do all that for you.
Hunter mutters something about how his mom will do it.
Ben: Hunter likes to mix up the words wife and mom. He thinks you can call your wife, 'Mom'.
Me, to Hunter: I stop cleaning up after you at 18, whether you're married or not. And you can't marry your mom, or call your wife, mom. Trust me, she won't like it.
Ben and Hunter grumble.


EDIT: Upon reading this to my husband on the phone he says, "Atleast he's starting to listen to my advice. I feel like I'm succeeding as a father."

Baseball Season

Went to Ben's game last night, and brought along the camera. Got some cool shots. He seems to really like his teammates, and played well. He hit three base hits- I think that's how you say it. The highlight of the game for me was during the first inning when Ben's team made three outs in a row on the first three batters on the opposing team... they ran in from the outfield celebrating like they had won the World Series. Too funny.  Also, that will be the extent of my trying to write about baseball, because while I love watching it, and even enjoy hearing about it, and have a reasonable understanding of it, I can't speak baseball.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

A little birthday celebration to go.

We took Hunter to the mall of america nickelodeon theme park today for a little birthday celebrations. I used to do parties, with bouncy houses and activities and kids and stomach aches (my own). Now, we go somewhere. Much better. Hunter rode his favorite, the log ride over and over and over...
Dad made funny faces.

A quick shot of Theo and me.
We also took Hunter to the Rainforest Cafe. He loved sitting close enough to feel the mist, and cheered every time the thunder came.

On our way back to the park from the restaurant we ran into this shark.
Hunter decided the air bender guy looks just like Ben without his hair, and with a big arrow on his forward. See?

We enjoyed all the cool Nickelodeon sights, like this Sponge Bob fountain.

Bumper cars prove they drive like their mom.

How air balloon ride.

Free fall ride, made for great faces!

Hands up on the roller coasters.
 And Sponge Bob and Squidward!

 More goofing off as they head back to the log ride, again.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Field Trip

I decided, at the very last minute to accompany Hunter on his preschool field trip to the zoo today. I figured, based on his performance yesterday, it wouldn't be fair to have any other mother watching over him all day. He was a monster yesterday, stuck to his guns on not picking up about 30 legos in a little pile for the entire day- I took away wii, tv, playing with friends, and threatened taking away going on the field trip among other things. So glad I went, too... he climbed on every railing he could find, threw sand at the playground, and generally went against the grain. All in all it was actually a pretty pleasant day for me, though. He was entertained, and pretty good for Hunter standards.

I love sloths.
 On huge flamingo, and it is standing on two legs?

 Beautiful sea horses.
 Momma wrestles with baby, and it reminded me of Hunter and I.
And here was the daddy... reminded me of Theo. lol! Big eyebrows and all.
Very cool old wooden carousel.

Beautiful warm day!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Hunter is 6!

Hunter has a wonderful birthday. He went to school, where they ate cupcakes, and came home to be spoiled with all his favorite things, including endless cheese popcorn, and dinner of shrimp, "without the crust." He rode his bike most of the afternoon. Standing up like this, he considers it a cool trick.

He got a few presents, inclding new sandals, a wii game, and this Annakin shuttle thingy that goes fast.

 I can't believe he is 6! Time is flying!!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Last night we went to see Theo play in his first church league softball game. I was hesistant to go because it was stopping raining, and I was worried the boys would not behave. Plus, it was cold and windy. We grabbed some blankets (one waterproof picnic kind), sweaters, and the dog, and headed out. We had the BEST time. Not only did Theo play really well, and the team won 6-3, but the boys were awesome, keeping their butts planted on the bench with me the entire time! There was another young boy there that was making us all crack-up. He was probably about 4, and already sportin' his spiderman jammy pants for the night, but he was also wearing all the accessories to a sheriff woody costume. He talked, and talked, and made us laugh so hard. He kept putting the woody hat on our dog, and at one point tried to ride her as though she was Bullseye.  When I was telling the boy our names I introduced Ben and Laura, and I laughed so hard I cried. All-in-all, I'd have to say it was the most relaxing and fun thing I've done alone with the boys in a long, long time. (Alone, I mean Theo was there but he was with his team the whole time). I'd like to think it was just that my boys are growing up, but I think having their principal and pastor right there on the softball field helped. lol.

Perhaps my favorite part of the whole night was when Ben and Hunter were critiquing Theo's game. Why doesn't dad step right when he throws, etc. And about 6 pitches Hunter freaked out: "Mom, why are they throwing like dis?" motioning a softball pitch. I laughed so hard and explained under hand pitching the best I could.

At home, Hunter and Ben have been stealing every chance they get to play baseball. At the time I had the camera only Hunter wanted to hit, but I felt the need to document how much he loves taking pitches.

The little boys start baseball and t-ball very soon, so I'm sure lots of pictures and stories to come.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Another army wife vent.

We found out this week that the Army is charging is $4000 for being overweight by $6000 lbs on our move last year. I'm pretty fumed on multiple levels about this. I mean, how many of us know how much the contents of our home weighs? Even upon estimating, can anyone truly know without a truck scale? Since our last move we had bought a house, had two kids, acquired pets... 7 years is a long time to grow the amount of stuff in your life.

I was also stuck living seperately from my husband for the months prior to our move, and as an individual with back problems and fibromyalgia could not have had a huge yard sale, etc. I tried, trust me, and it did not come to fruition.

On this move we never made claims for our various jobs, etc, but still I think the allowed amount for Theo's job is like 500 lbs, and mine, too. I used to be a teacher & speech coach, and most of my stuff from that era consists of books. If I return to that field, I'd like to have my resources with me. Add my current "job" and you have a whole lotta yarn, fabric, sewing machines (2), and more. That would also include computers, books with patterns etc. Way more than 500 lbs. WAY more.

Now I get it. I get purging stuff, decluttering, I get it. I see the value in it, and since we got here I've sent boxes and boxes of stuff we don't need out the door to donation or garage sales, including a truck load of kids clothes, my clothes, books, old knick knacks, etc. Even some furniture. I have two boxes of donation items ready to go right now. But the fact is our "home" can't come in the walls of the place, can't come from the memories that flow from window to window. The feeling of home and familiarity for this army family comes, for example, from the massive farm house style dining room table to craft at, eat at, talk at, laugh at- the table that is sturdy enough to last generations, and bring with it all the memories we may leave behind.

But fundamentaly asking me to change the person I am? No. I am a collector. Most of my furnture is hard wood oak, antique, big sturdy stuff. I have a few pressed board pieces of crap in the kids play room, and that's it. I don't like cheap glass or plastic, I like mason jars and crystal. Have you ever held a crystal vase? HEAVY. Civilans get to choose to put down roots, I get heirlooms I take with me. I don't have one photo album, I have 20 huge scrapbooks I want to pass down to my kids someday. I have pictures frames everywhere, due to my passion for photography. I am not a minimalist. And I'm not going to be anytime soon. You can take my husband, send him in to harms way, take him all day, for weekends, even for multiple daily interuptions on our so called "vacations." I'll even birth our second kid a month early while his father sits in the height of the Iraq war, but don't ask me to get rid of the sliver of luxury I'm allowed. Such Assholes.

Before anyone says anything about the memories not being in the stuff, allow me to call bullshit. I don't remember my dad, who died when I was 7, AT ALL. Not one single actual memory of his person. But I can tell you all about the quilt he and my mom had on their bed when I would cuddle with them and watch Night Court. I have the quilt on my sofa right now, and without it, I can promise you I'd have a lot fewer true feelings of his presence in my life at all. The stuff triggers the memories for me. Period.

Really, what it boils down to for me? You know if I'm going to be the best damn army wife I know. I'm gonna roll with the punches, let you lift up my family and move us all over whenever, take my husband whenever you gosh darn please, you know what- let me MOVE any freaking amount of weight I would like to move. Its not like I'm doing anything unethical? I mean what army spouse has time for that shit? I mean, is the weight limit designed to keep me from moving someone else's stuff with mine? What is the point? Can they just freaking pay all the different amounts and call it a day? Don't they owe us that atleast? In the grand scheme of things that $4000 to them is not as close to a big deal as it is to us. We live paycheck to paycheck, and thanks to the crashing housing market and economy have the shittiest credit you could imagine, and a house in foreclosure to boot. Humiliation doesn't cover. it. Can I just keep my freaking books? Keep my heirlooms? Keep my oak furniture?

Argh. I'm done venting for now.