Saturday, June 30, 2007

The World Traveler Baby...

We have spent the last few days on an airplane traveling the world... We are visiting Daddy!! Yay!! We have tried to stay on the same schedule, but sometimes I wonder if the fact that it is the middle of the night here when it is afternoon at home isn't screwing the poor kid up... Could it be that he is getting his cues from the sun even though we are rarely outside?? We tend to go out during our "morning" which is late evening... So it does get dark out... But for the rest of the time we are inside.. So does it really matter?? I am trying to keep him on his normal schedule with meals, naps, etc. Will he get cues from that? Or is he as confused as me? OH well.

He did great on the plane. His only big "cry fit" was the last 40 minutes or so. Since we were either in airports or on airplanes for over 24 hours, I'm thinking that I'm pretty lucky. He only needed a dum-dum pop a couple of times. Otherwise he slept, played peekaboo with the gentleman behind me and flirted with the flight attendents...

His biggest flirt moment was at Starbucks at the mall when a local gal asked to hold him.. He was loving it.. even though he removed her head covering... Daddy and I were a bit embarrassed about that. She didn't mind though. Just laughed and fixed it. I guess a baby with big blue eyes can get away with a lot in the middle-east. So far the weather hasn't been too terribly hot. Nothing above 103, although when we were getting ready to land the pilot did announce that it had been 123 degrees.

Our biggest "family" adventure was the trip to the mall. (Same trip as mentioned above.) If you think traffic is bad anywhere... Um, you need to come here. It took us about an hour to get from the ENTRANCE of the mall to a parking spot. Oh well. We are still looking for a cheap baby monitor... so if you know where to get one of those on this island, please let me know!

As for now, I apologize for how poorly this post is written. My mind is a bit fragmented as I'm trying to deal with working on two different time zones.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

From the Road....

I woke up Saturday morning and felt sick. The thought of lugging two suitcases, a laptop bag, a diaper bag, a carseat and a stroller through the airport with a screaming baby was NOT something I was looking forward to. I got ready anyway. My sister and brother-in-law rode with me up to Omaha where we ate lunch at the Rose Garden. (Great Great Great Chinese food!) After that we headed to the airport. They helped me into the airport with all of the luggage. I carried the diaper bag, Kelly carried the baby and the pack mule, er I mean Andy carried everything else to the counter. We got checked in. The baby was great. We got him in the stroller much to his dismay but once we started walking it was fine. I lugged my backpack and strapped the diaper bag to the stroller. THAT was the easy part. Security check was a bit difficult. I had to remove my shoes, remove the laptop, cellphone and quart size ziploc bag full of travel soaps and run those through. The baby's stroller had to go through... The removal wasn't the issue.. It was putting everything back while I was waiting for the stroller to come through. I held up the line.... Until someone so nicely helped me. I got seated at the gate only 2 hours before my plane was due to take off when so nicely my name was paged. I was expecting the worst. My sister and brother-in-law had crashed the car. I was sure of it. Nope.... I left my boarding pass at the security checkpoint. You see, you have to have that out too.. Apparently it didn't get put away.
The plane was fine. The baby slept the entire way to Chicago. At Midway we had Potbellies for food. I ate half of the food before I understood that we were all lining up. I hurriedly put everything away grabbed all of my "cargo" and headed for the pre-board area. The great thing about having a small child.... YOU get on the plane first. I knew the baby wasn't going to sleep this time, so I got out a dum-dum and a bib... His first lollipop. gross. grooossss. groooooosssss... But a nice grandmotherly lady sat down next to us... She WANTED to sit next to my baby who was drooling a nice sticky combination of cherry dum dum and baby spit. She was very friendly and didn't seem to be nearly the 65 she claimed she was. It was wonderful. She played and flirted with the baby. That trip went swimmingly as well. She made sure I found the rental car place so I wasn't wandering around the airport forever.
Then there was the rental car. The man who was at the counter was a BIT off-kilter. Perhaps it was the 80 degree 100 percent humidity air... Perhaps it was the late hour, but he was an odd one. He wouldn't give me one car because the miles were too high on it. I had signed up and paid for a compact car. A Ford Focus type thing. He wanted to give me a Mustang... I thought about it. SWEET!!! I would LOOOVE to take a Mustang!! I thought about asking him if it was the newest body style for about 3 seconds before I asked him if a car seat would fit rear facing in the back. I am driving an Explorer. At no extra charge. They pulled the car around for me. (that's a big big big bonus! Lots of places I have been to you take a shuttle to a parking space...) Then the trouble began. The poor exhausted baby is sitting in the stroller. I am struggling with the carseat. I spent 20 minutes trying to figure out why the latch system wasn't working.... Turns out the latch straps aren't long enough to latch in rear facing if they are in the slot setting for forward facing.. Hmm.. Imagine that.. After sweating to death (did I mention I forgot to put on deoderant! ew!!), getting lots of "are you SURE you're qualified to be my mommy" looks from my son, and finally getting the carseat in I relaxed a bit. I got in the car's a/c and grabbed for the phone so I could call the person I am staying with.... I couldn't find my phone... LORD! I had left it at the airport in Chicago... Or did it fall out of the diaper bag on the airplane (I found a bib that had spilled out as we were leaving).... Where did it go? I got out of the car and I completely emptied the contents of the diaper bag... I reloaded the diaper bag. Rinse and Repeat. 5 times. No cell phone. Then I noticed my old phone (the one I let the baby play with.) Hmm.. Maybe that one will still work?? I turned it on.. No luck. So I just got in the car. Sick to my stomach again and headed for Chesapeake. On the way it dawned on me.. As I was hurriedly re-packing things.. I put a LOT more stuff in the computer bag because I hadn't needed very much earlier... I stuck my hand in the top.. and viola! I stopped sweating and feeling sick. My cell phone was there.. :) Yay!

Today we went to a birthday party and hung out at the house for the evening.. Tomorrow is the beach with a friend, then dinner with a different friend.. Tuesday I am going to wash the laundry we've used.. (I hate travelling with dirty clothes.. Ick!) and re-pack for the next leg of our trip... Internet where we're going is flaky, so I probably won't update while we're there... BUT I'll update when I get back...
Oooh.. and if you are in the Hampton Roads area and I didn't get to see you this time, I will be back in October. Please don't hate me. I only have a few days, and things are quite crazy!!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Just one more for the day....

I am thinking about changing the url to my site... I have thought about it... I think I am going to do it when I get back in July... Maybe while I'm gone? It's really a simple URL change.... So... Pay attention, because I'm going to post the new URL one day... It will be posted for a couple of weeks at most.. Then I'm moving.... I'm also thinking about the title "Just the baby and me... ... and everything else that is going on while the husband is away." That is working now, and it will work for another few months. But what happens when my husband comes home?? I'm going to have to change the title! I guess that means I'll have to get out my creative bones again.. Or maybe I'll just change the title to the one I had on Angelfire... But then, that means using something an old friend gave me... hmmm... I'm sorry you all have to put up with my babble this evening. I'm thoroughly procrastinating on the cleaning/packing that I really should be doing.

New Years Resolution Revisited...

Every once in a while I go back and look through my old blog entries to see what kind of boring stuff I am posting out there for the world to see.. (And to make sure I'm not accidentally giving any kind of info I don't necessarily want out there... ) Today I did that and I found my New Years Resolution Post. I suppose I can let you know what has and hasn't been done....

  1. Figure out a routine for the daytime. Include "office hours" when I will work, and "play time" for the little guy. The days might be slightly different, but there needs to be some sort of order. For my kid's sake!
  2. Get the little man out of my bed and into his own bassinet, followed by his own crib (once it warms up enough. I also would like to get him back to sleeping through the night.
  3. Get my room organized. (this one is the most likely to be broken.)

Okay... Number 1. Figure out routine? Done! yay! Office hours.. Well, those are from 9pm until 1am... while the baby is sleeping soundly and I, though I may try cannot. I also do some work in the mornings while the baby plays happily between meals.. We have figured out a pretty regular schedule of meals, snacks and bedtimes... They are about to be all messed up on vacation, but hopefully we'll work it out. Number 2. The baby is sleeping in his crib for a HUGE majority of the night, most nights. When we are camping he sleeps with me for convenience, and when he wakes up in the mornings I nurse him in bed hoping he'll go back to sleep. He usually does for about 30 to 45 minutes. Then we're up for the day. SOOO.. YAY!! Oh Oh, and He's sleeping through the night as of Monday! Whoo hoo!! Number 3. Get my room organized. I did that. Once. In March. It worked. For a day. Sortof. Now my room has exploded into the basement. I hope to have it all taken care of by the time I leave on Saturday *cough, cough* It has to happen, otherwise I'll be mortified because my mother will come down here and clean it for me...

All in all, I think I've done pretty good. I'm a slob, and I knew that number 3 was a long shot... But really, it isn't so much mess as disorganization and lack of space to put things.. I have a 4 bedroom home in two bedrooms and a living room.... It doesn't always work out. How has everyone else done on theirs? Has anyone been hugely successful?? (Mine were lame... the first two were bound to happen at some point, even with little intervention from me.)

It's Done!

The baby's scrapbook is done... If you know me, then you'll know which one is mine.. Otherwise you can take a look at the photographers page. She has a package that includes a pregnancy portrait session, an "on-call" photographer for the day of delivery at the hospital, and then another studio session two weeks or so after the baby was born. I had someone who was our "designated" photographer who was taping/etc. since Daddy wasn't home to witness... It also allowed us to get three studio sessions with one including Daddy when he was home between commands this winter. It was great. I am sad that I probably won't be having my next child here so that we can do the same thing for them. I think it turned out wonderfully. Here is her webpage: I know, blatant advertising for her, but she did a great job, and I love the pictures!

In other news the baby got to go "waterskiing" this weekend. No, I did not attempt to stick an 7 month old baby who cannot stand unsupported onto waterskis.. He sat on a "zip-sled" with Grampa while we pulled the boat pretty slowly. He didn't protest the experience at all, which leads me to believe that he enjoyed it. At least I hope he enjoyed it!

We are getting ready for a long trip... I am very excited and very nervous as well. We are flying. Tell me, what is a woman to do with all of the stuff? I have a checked bag for each of us, as well as his carseat and stroller (they together count as one other checked bag... Thank you Southwest Airlines!!). Along with that, I'll have MY laptop (my carryon) and his diaper bag (one carry on, one personal item). I'm not so concerned about getting ONTO the flight, or transferring from one plane to the next. I'm most concerned about HOW in the world I'm going to deal with a cranky baby at 11pm at night and all of this baggage at the car rental counter, during the shuttle to the rental car and all of that. I think I might go insane! We'll see. The second leg, however should be easier, except that I have to lug his carseat in addition to our carryon items and him. He'll be strapped into it in the plane, but in the meantime, getting all of that onto the plane, including him (without his stroller, because the airline will not allow me to bring that as carryon) should be quite comical... So, if you see some poor girl with a giant 7 month old and a million bags.. Say a prayer for her... After all, it could be me.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


So.. I got my letter to the editor published yesterday. It was great news for me. I simply cannot get over the comments that have been made. I am considering getting the transcript from that day to get his whole comment. Apparently, he proposed an amendment to the gold star license plate bill. (I looked up the bill and its amendments on our state's website.) The amendment would have allowed for the KKK to have their own license plate as well. This bothers me just as much as the comment he made previously about soldiers raping women, etc. How dare he equate the military with the KKK? I would think that would upset all groups of people. Interesting note: He is the only state senator for our unicameral legislature that does NOT have an email option on the state's website... Perhaps he was getting a bit too much hate mail?

I cannot complain about everything Mr. Chambers does. Someone told me that he makes the other senators think, which he does. He really fought OPS when they tried to re-draw the district lines. Which he should have; it would have essentially segregated the schools. However, he certainly needs to learn to pick his battles. I would think that his constant filibustering and ridiculous amendment proposals would irritate the other senators to the point that they would automatically turn off whenever he opens his mouth. It certainly would me.

Links to the state website so you can write Mr. Chambers about his comments, and the page for the Lincoln Journal Star's Letter to the Editor Page.
Mr. Ernie Chambers Contact Information

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

First I must apologize....

to my husband. He hates it when I get on soapboxes and rant and rave about things.. Even more so when I do it publicly. And while it may be hot where he is, the temperature where I am... It is a risin'....

It really gets on my nerves when people bad-mouth the military. Ernie Chambers, a state senator from Omaha has done it publicly. He wasn't arguing about why our military is where a lot of people think it ought not to be.. He was arguing about a a damn license plate. I will put links to the articles at the bottom of the page. Mr. Chambers said:

"America is a country without honor, the military discriminates against minorities and soldiers in Iraq are dying in vain and raping women".

This comment got me so mad my blood nearly boiled. I am not going to talk about how our country is "without honor" and I am not going to deny that soldiers are dying. This, however is an unfair and partially untrue statement. I wrote a letter to the editor about this comment. I was only allowed 250 words. Because he didn't want to honor our soldiers who have passed away fighting in the most recent military conflict.

The part of this comment that got me so riled up was that "soldiers...are raping women." This is why he doesn't want to approve a license plate honoring the soldiers who have given their lives doing what our government asked them to do? Yes there are a few creeps in the military. Think about this though: What was his argument against the "Pro-Husker" football plates? Did he talk about the football players that have been involved in drugs and yes... *big gasp* raping women??? Did he say that perhaps we not honor the Husker football team beause of those football players? Not in this state. "Them's fightin' words." (Same as wearing purple when we're playing K-state.. You just don't do it!) Because people here have pride in our football team, and not every football player was involved in drugs and rape.. Nope, many of them had 4.0 GPAs and are generally wonderful people... The same is true for the military.

It doesn't matter if I am in, married to or hate the military... The soldiers are more than just soldiers. They are people... With families, children, wives, husbands, daughters, sons, mothers and fathers just like the rest of us. They deserve respect as human beings. I am so sick and tired of people talking about them as though they are the ones that wanted to go fight a war. I am tired of people bad-mouthing them. Why are they there then? How did they get there? I'll tell you. WE THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES voted a bunch of people into the senate and congress. WE THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES voted for a President. WE THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES use those people as our REPRESENTATIVES. They make our laws, and make decisions for us, because it wouldn't be right for us to have to vote on every little piddly thing that needs to be dealt with. So our representatives got some information that led them to make a decision, which placed our military where they are today. These people didn't just get together and say "let's go raise some hell somewhere where the locals don't want us." They were told to go there... If you look at it logically, who is responsible? Yes, the government, yes the administration, but also... WE THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES... who put those decision makers in that place where they have the power to do such things.. So how fair is it for someone in our State goverment to say something like that? It isn't. If the president can be impeached for getting head from an intern.. I think a state senator should be impeached for slander. For the slander of my husband, many of his friends, my father, my grandfather, my cousin and her husband, several of my high school friends, and possibly someday my son.

I am also going to say that the military does NOT discriminate against minorities nearly as much as many other organizations in this country. What do you need to succeed in the military? As an enlisted soldier, you just need to stay out of trouble, work hard and pass your promotion tests. These aren't tests that you haven't been trained for. By the time you get up for promotion, you should know most of what they are asking you. If you want to be a commissioned officer in the military, what do you need? A college degree. How do you pay for that? The military will take care of it. All you have to do is get through school with a decent GPA. (not GREAT, decent.) To succeed, you just need to stick it out. You need to be focused and dedicated. Do what is right, and DO YOUR JOB. Yes, there are a few tests here too, and some are hard, but what race you are has NOTHING to do with the questions that are asked on those tests.. They want to know that when push comes to shove, you are going to know which button to push, and who is allowed to tell you to push that button. OOOKay.. enough on that subject..

Yes, the people in the military get paid to do what they do, and yes they get benefits, and while I won't complain about those things, they aren't worth all of the things that they have to give up. Lets think about what the people in the military give up because WE THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES have asked them to do a job (through our representatives, of course.). Our soldiers give up months and years at a time with thier families, births of their children, all of their firsts (words, steps, smiles, laughs), they miss birthdays and anniversaries (my husband and I have yet to spend one together in five years of marriage), they give up a sense of stability because they move so often (we have lived in 3 states in five years, One of them twice, for a total of 4 moves from state-to-state, and soon will be 4 states and 5 moves). They give up knowing their children, going to ball games, seeing their school programs. Many of our soldiers are not full time soldiers, so they give up jobs (yes the companies are required to keep jobs for them, but things are often different when they return). They give up their lives. They give up their body parts, and some have given up thier mental health. A few (God help them) have lost their faith. They give up their families, and they give up their time. For what? A few bucks, a college education and lowered health care? I don't think so.

My soapbox doesn't necessarily end with Mr. Chambers's comment and the way it made me feel. There are quite a few things I'm getting upset about. I could go on forever about gas prices and American Pride (or the lack thereof) , sacrifice and how our society has our heads shoved so far up our *** and how so many people think solely about themeselves, but I won't. I just want you all to think about some issues when you are out and about complainging:

  • Gas prices. "They are too high." Fine. Do you still buy it, or are you finding a different way around? If bread was 10 bucks a loaf I'd bet you'd eat something else.
  • The Government. I won't go into the whines I hear about this all the time. How many of you voted? Did You? That's what I thought. If you didn't vote, shut your mouth. You have no right to complain about it. IF you voted, you are allowed to complain. But don't sit around whining. Write to your representative and tell them what you think they ought to do. After all, if we don't tell them what to do, they are going to do what they think they ought to.
  • Breastfeeding in public. The breasts are only sexual things that men are attracted to because our society has made it that way. Breasts are biologically attractive to men because they are a sign of fertility. They are not made for sex. They are made for milk. Do you get grossed out when a baby is drinking from a bottle? Don't freak out if you see me feeding my baby. I refuse to do it in a bathroom. I don't eat in there and neither will he.

There's a ton more I could say, but I've rambled on long enough. I am tired of it. Tired of it all. Stop whining. Do something intelligent to fix it. Oh.. and Mr. Chambers, stop talking bad about my husband and his colleagues. They do their best; it's all they can do.

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