Blonde moment

And the silver spoon.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

The weekend five…

What’s something you wear only on special occasions, and when was the last time? Hose. I am generally a bare legged with glitter lotion person when I can help it. And the last time I wore hose was probably Pianomomsicle’s wedding. (Glitter lotion is rarely inappropriate.)

What’s something you consume only on special occasions, and when was the last time? Bread Pudding… and the last time I had it was Valentine’s Day at The Hotel Rouge in DC. I generally say, “My bread pudding is the best,” (hey, Melitta studied in England and says so, therefore…) but The Hotel Rouge has AWESOME bread pudding, made with croissants and topped with hot fudge… yum!

Who’s someone you see only on special occasions, and when was the last time? My cousins; and I saw them most recently at Granny’s funeral.

From now on, you will commemorate every year on this date something that happened to you in the past twenty-four hours! What will it be? I’m going to break this one… Josh came home on June 23rd, as such, I will forever commemorate it as Josh coming home day.

What’s a unique special occasion you share with just a few people you know? I can think of several unique occasions. First, youngest to oldest, my sisters and my birthdays are consecutive odds… 1/3; 5/7; 9/11. And that is technically three dates… so on 5/17, my dad proposed to my mom, Josh’s Dad and step-mom got married, and Josh and I got married. Years apart for all of them, but still majorly cool… Oh, and Josh’s Grandma and I (now) both share the same first and last name and birthday. And this same grandma and my maternal grandma have the same first and middle name (but not birthday).

Via, as always, The Pianomomsicle

A sure sign Josh is home…

My grocery bill more then doubled. To put things in perspective… Josh needs 35 Weight Watchers Points a day… I need 22 points.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Bad Blondes…

I have refrained from commenting about Paris Hilton and other bad blondes in the news. Something bothers me about the entire twenty-something celebrity scene. Ms. Hilton and company earn celebrity, fame, and probably a great deal of money, for their irresponsibility. And the media is correct to exhort we should not encourage young ladies to look up to these women.

However, I have a different take, or at least one I haven’t heard. I was looking at my Marilyn DVD collection today. And the question still strikes me, “Did anyone care enough about Marilyn Monroe to pray the Holy Spirit lead her to repentance?”

The unfortunate thing about the current dominant Christian culture is they place such loathing and hatred on people like Paris Hilton that they forget to love her enough to pray for her soul. Sure, hold her up as an example of what sinful behavior will get you, but in turn pray for her soul.
As we wag our fingers and say, “She deserved what she got,” we must also look in the mirror and realize the punishment we deserve as sinners. Anna-Nicole Smith’s life became her demise, and we should fervently pray that same death does not fall upon others, and for the souls of the women our daughters admire.

The share with friends issue...

I had a comment regarding whether or not my distaste for people calling the day after Josh got home was because I'm not big on sharing Josh. Something that differentiates Josh and me from the other young couples in our church is Josh and I maintain separate friends and social activities. Certainly, I've become friends with Josh's friends wives, and the reverse is true for Josh. But, Josh and I do maintain social activites apart from each other.

If Josh wanted to go out and see Scotty or Jon or Richard or any of his other friends, I'm completely cool with that and also encourage it. Neither of us likes being smothered. Most people in our lives understand that we need space. It took Josh a few days to be ready to be part of American Society when he was home on leave, and there were *a lot* of social obligations thrust upon us by people who thrive upon action and social interaction. And not everyone was as understanding about Josh needing his space.

Most people think I'm all ready for the huge stereotypical family open house to celebrate, much like the widow who lost her coin. I am, but we also have to consider Josh's needs and wishes as well. We intentionally made a *small* fuss over him. And his family and friends know he's home. And he'll contact them when he's ready. Right now, he's just adjusting, and things are progressing at about the same speed as they did back when he was last home.

My issue was not so much with people wanting to celebrate. Though I blog, I am a private person when it comes to my inner most thoughts. My issue was the invasion of privacy by people who I am not particularly close to who didn't understand it was just not a good time for me to talk. And I stand by my comment. If you know of a soldier who is coming home, give them a few days to regroup and give their families the privacy they need to reconnect.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Not a responsible parent...

Or gun owner?

There are some people I really don’t talk about, mostly because all they want is attention. Rosie O’Donnell is one of those people. It is really too emotionally draining to spend a lot of energy on her. However, this crosses the line.

I used to baby-sit for a gun owning family. They were all in favor of gun rights, but they didn’t want their boys to play with “gun toys.” So, the boys had these alligators that they pointed at each other while saying, “Bang!” (Defeated the purpose.)

Now, is it just me, or does the young Miss O’Donnell have an unusually substantial amount of ammo for the four-year-old daughter of an anti-gun activist? Furthermore, if the above mentioned boys were caught (and I seriously doubt they knew a gun was in the house) with their father’s ammo, they’d be grounded until Christ’s return.

Let’s just ignore how inconsistent, if not hypocritical, it is for Ms. O’Donnell to own the type of weapon it would take for that ammo. But a responsible parent does not let their children play with guns and ammo PERIOD END OF DISCUSSION.

I am all in favor of gun ownership. And this irresponsible behavior on the part of the O’Donnell household makes responsible gun owners look bad. Responsible gun owners teach their children that guns are dangerous tools and are not toys to be played with.

And, let’s say the young Miss O’Donnell really did want to dress up like a soldier. Cool. Good for her. But there are other ways for a young person to experience aspects of military life, such as civil air patrol or Jr. ROTC. Ms. O’Donnell should really know better then to condone such attitudes as playing with guns and she should be educated about real ways how her children can experience the military or honor soldiers.

It’s good to have him home!

Well, Josh has been back for a couple of days now. Sunday and Monday he was a bit disorientated. Not so much jet lag as culture shock. And that was to be expected. Yesterday, he was showing signs of being “normal Josh.” Humidity is bothering him less. He likes wearing anything but green. And Josh has enjoyed watching baseball from the comfort of his very own easy chair at home while holding his remote control. We are both sleeping well, Josh because he has a comfortable bed, me because I need Josh around in order to sleep well.

A couple of etiquette issues should be discussed. DO NOT ask a soldier “Did you kill anyone?” or “Did you discharge your weapon?” or any question where you expect to be entertained with stories of blood and gore. Go ahead and ask about the politics behind the war, but don’t expect either Josh or me to mimic back your political opinion. There is a difference between being in favor of an issue and commitment to the issue. A favorable opinion is easy, commitment takes work.

And, let’s say you know someone who just got a soldier back home… don’t call his wife or mom the day after he gets back unless you are part of the wife/mom’s immediate family or one of her two or three very best friends. E-mail is great! I can shoot of an e-mail when one or the other of us needs “space.” But, *please* don’t call the day after a soldier comes home.

So, yes, I’ve given up control of the remote, my car keys (besides which, we busted the automatic seat adjuster fuse on Sunday), and the bathroom. The agenda for the next couple of days are renewing his drivers license, buying tabs for his truck, filing his off of active duty papers where they need to be filed, and an oil change. But since this is a gorgeous day, I’m going to talk Josh into spending some of it outside.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Visual Confirmation…


Josh is the one carrying the guideon or "yellow pennant thingy" if you are a civilian.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

And now, a word from our sponsors…

Welcome home sign making materials… $60
Appropriate clothes to properly welcome ones husband home in… (What Josh doesn’t know won’t hurt him.)
Seeing ones husband for the first time in months… priceless

Some things in life, money can’t buy… for everything else there’s BAH.

Now, if you will excuse me, I have to see after a soldier. He was out past curfew. Some lame excuse about orders being extended. So I said, “Well, if the Army ordered you to jump out of a perfectly good air plane…” And he said, “Yeah, used to be a paratrooper…” Still, out past curfew is out past curfew and means he needs close supervision until he learns better.

Thank you, God for the safe return of my husband. Julia Cory says it best:
"We Praise Thee, O God, Our Redeemer Creator" by Julia Cory

"We praise Thee, O God, our Redeemer, Creator,
In grateful devotion our tribute we bring;
We lay it before Thee, we kneel and adore Thee,
We bless Thy holy Name, glad praises we sing.

"We worship Thee, God of our fathers, we bless Thee;
Through life’s storm and tempest our guide have Thou been;
When perils overtake us, escape Thou will make us,
And with Thy help, O Lord, our battles we win.

"With voices united our praises we offer,
To Thee, great Jehovah, glad anthems we raise.
Thy strong arm will guide us, our God is beside us,
To Thee, our great Redeemer, forever be praise."

So, tomorrow…

Granny's service and then going up to pick up my husband. I take custody of him on Saturday afternoon. The most exciting thing in a very long time!

For all of those who have been praying for us, continue to do so throughout the reintegration process!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

And posting will be light...

For self evident reasons. I'm a little busy, a lot tired, and incredibly excited!

That's them

And so now you know !

Update: from the Strib .

Monday, June 18, 2007

Something hard to explain…

I am on my last.emotional.string.period. God has given me enough to get through the deployment. Granny dying and Josh coming home bring conflicting emotions and for my own sanity, I have to pick one. Especially since we’re picking Josh up the day after Granny’s funeral. I have been rather lucky the past 21 months. I’ve only had to really deal with a single emotion at a time, which is good for someone with my personality type. But, I don’t have the emotional energy to snap immediately between grieving and celebrating. So, I have chosen the later.

It isn’t that I’m insensitive or immature. Life isn’t fair. It’s a kick in the pants that Josh went to Iraq. But we dealt with it. I have come to terms with Josh being dropped off in Grand Rapids instead of Anoka. I have come to terms with participating in a welcome home ceremony where I don’t get an opinion. And it isn’t Josh or my fault that Granny died this week.

But since life isn’t fair, a person with depression, like me, has to choose between the emotions we feel, lest we have an emotional break down. Josh deserves to have a wife who has spent all week preparing for his return. Josh deserves a happy wife, a welcome home that is not muted with grieving. I will tone down my giddy excitement at the appropriate moments, but at the same time, I have to live life. I have to feel joy.

A couple of good things came about. Namely, Becky and Sam are coming with to the welcome home ceremony, which they normally would not have been able to. Granny is at rest with our Savior. And, because there will be seven adults in our caravan coming home, way too many for the comfort of a soldier who has this *thing* about being crowded, I will get to drive my own car and Josh will get to stretch out and pick the music. We can stop every couple of hours and rotate siblings and parents so everyone can get their personal time with him.

It’s a lesson I learned from my dad, once upon a time. His uncle’s funeral was on my birthday, probably 15 or so years ago. And Granny was ticked that he didn’t do what she wanted him to do. Instead, he celebrated his daughter’s birthday. And so, I will celebrate.

A Song of Rejoicing...

To the chior director: The tune of "If you're happy and you know it." With Gusto and Happiness...

My husband's in the states, Yes He Is!
My husband's in the states, Yes He Is!
Oh, my husband's coming home just as soon as they de-mob!
Oh, my husband's in the states, YES HE IS!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Sad news…

My paternal grandmother passed away tonight. I’m sitting here trying to collect my thoughts. And I have such mixed thoughts right now. Josh is coming home soon, and I can’t let my grief affect his homecoming. Pray that God gives me one more emotional thread to make it through the week and pray that God gives me the strength to do what I need to do.

I am reminded again of this post from Incarnatus Est on death . And also something Pastor said in adult Bible hour today. We do not believe in the Greek philosophical heresy that our bodies can be separated from our spirit. Granny has fallen asleep. She is indeed at rest in our Savior. “I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Christian Church, the resurrection of the body and the life ever lasting. Amen!”

Special to Dad…

You know, I can’t really say enough about my dad. Sure, when people think he’s too conservative, he’ll remind us that he did name his daughters after the Equal Rights Amendment. And he has one of the same guilty pleasures as his daughters, namely, much to Mom’s dismay and disgust, “The Simpson’s.” But who can complain about how a man sees it fit to name his children, and “The Simpson’s” is a fine show.

Right now, the benefit I am most cognizant of is that if Dad were not my dad, I would not be as good of a wife to Josh. Veterans are a breed of their own, and civilians really don’t understand them. I will never really understand my dad or my husband. However, after growing up in the house of a veteran, I am much more compassionate towards the needs my husband has as a service member.

I also don’t know how I would have gotten through the last twenty-and-a-half months had it not been for Dad. He made it through ‘Nam OK, not that he didn’t have a lot of problems because of his status as a Vietnam veteran, but because Dad is OK and has a good home life, it’s possible for Josh to come home and do the same.

I was reading the Preface to the Large Catechism. And I thought of my dad. Becky, HG, and I grew up listening to Dad talk about different theological issues. And before we became Lutherans, he still taught, probably unknowingly, in the same manner Martin Luther proposes in this preface, drill and repetition. I can tell you all about pruning, trees, reading orchestra notes, why it is a good idea to give blood, and a host of other things, and I can also tell you about their spiritual significance.

My Dad is a swell dad, and I wouldn’t be the same person without him.

Friday, June 15, 2007

I’m antsy…

I seriously *should* be doing other things right now. But I’m antsy and my mind isn’t really in what should be getting done (namely setting up the spice game and wrapping party favors and my bridal shower gift).
The above is an afghan I made for Carl as a house warming gift.
And you know, it isn’t so much that I’m anxious, I’m impatient. And I’m feeling easily distracted. Oh, well.
I’ve cut down on reading political blogs. Talk of Iran and boarders and foreign policy is not going to ruin my summer. I have exactly two pieces of news to look forward to and neither comes from blogs, TV, nor newspapers.
Here's to hot, humid summers, cold beer, and good news! And about hot, humid summers... it is a bad time to give up ones caffine habit. It just is.

Just reminding my husband…

What I look like.

Bridal Shower game idea…

So, when I was at the Pianomomicle’s baby shower back in November, her sister-in-law inspired me. We played the “baby food game” where by you have to guess what vegetable is in the jar. I decided, “Hey, when at a bridal shower, would it not be fun to play the same game, just with spices?” I mean, spices are super expensive. So, isn’t it a nice idea to play the spice game and let the bride have the spices? When we threw a shower for Caroline, we did the spice game. This time I made it easier. But that doesn’t mean I wasn’t evil

The Friday Five…

Via the Pianomomicle

What’s something you were into before it became popular? Um… I was into DC Talk before my sisters were… but I’ll leave it at that.
What’s something you were reluctant to jump on the bandwagon with, but now are totally into? Capri pants. Until recently, I had a hard time finding some that were the proper length.
What’s a current trend or fad you just don’t get? Plunge necklines… can’t do ‘em. (Why, oh fashion designers, must ALL summer dress shirts reveal cleavage?)
If you could turn any current fondness of yours into a popular trend, what would it be? Glitter lotion. My bridesmaids I thought I was a freak because I insisted on wearing glitter lotion. Glitter lotion is rarely inappropriate.
What’s something that’s totally uncool that you love anyway? Blue eye shadow and navy blue eye-liner… together… and berry or red lipstick. Oh, and sunscreen. Tanning is over-rated. I will laugh when everyone (especially Josh) gets skin cancer obscenely early.

An important anniversary…

We are approaching the 10th anniversary of the death of one of the best women to ever live. She was compassionate towards others, always giving of her time, an international celebrity, advisor to important people, guest at the White House, and admired the world over.

I thank God for Mother Theresa and her life.

(What, you thought I meant someone else?)

Ruth Graham…

I admire her a lot. Even though I am no longer enamored with decision theology, she has my respect, now more so then ever.

I don’t think the Evangelical World realizes what it demands out of married Evangelists. They give up a lot for the proclamation (why is there an “I” in proclaim, but not in proclamation?) of the gospel. I think that is one of the reasons why the Catholic Church asks its priests remain celibate. Ask any military spouse what it is like to have ones spouse gone a lot. And that is what Ruth Graham went through.

We all (mil spouses and pastors wives) do it willingly, but as a society, we are not grateful enough for women like Ruth Graham, who sacrifice a normal family life for the benefit of others. And Protestant Christians, I believe, are the worst of the ingrates. We expect our leaders to be married with perfect wives and kids, and when we have a figure, like Billy Graham, we make it incredibly difficult for the figure to take his family on the road.

So, next time you pray, say a special thanks for Ruth Graham and her life, and say a special thanks for your pastor’s wife and pray that your congregation is compassionate to her and doesn’t place unrealistic and legalistic expectations on her.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Getting stuff home…

Sorry, been a bit busy. It’s been one of those weeks where I’ve done something every night and then I’m getting stuff ready for Josh to come home. He’s starting to ship his stuff. I have his PT jacket now. Well, actually, I have TWO of his PT jackets. Yeah, the year Josh got out of the Army they switched PT uniforms from sweats to wind breakers. I have kept the “old one” because he was issued a new one to bring with to Iraq. So now I have both. The one he shipped home smells more like him then it smells like Iraq, so maybe I will just let it be and wash it when he comes home. His surplus socks smell like Iraq water, though. That will be remedied well before he gets home.

I’ve received three boxes and am waiting for a foot locker. Good thing my cousin has the good sense to be engaged to a Marine. I may have to engage his services.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

The weekend five…

**Remember the scene with Molly Ringwald putting lipstick on by holding it in her cleavage? I can push remote control buttons with my pinky toe, much to Josh’s frustration and annoyance.
**What's your favourite way to pass the time? Right now, e-mailing Josh, but in my non-deployment existence, I like to read and crochet, and I’m learning to knit.
**What's your favourite restaurant and why? I’ve got three. I am emotionally attached to The Macaroni Grill because that’s where we went before Josh proposed, that’s where we went when Josh told me he was going to re-enlist, and that’s where we went when Josh told me he was going to Iraq. In Washington DC, no trip is complete without a stop at The Afterwords at Kramer’s Books in DuPont Circle. I like their grilled veggie dish with a Rouge Dead Guy beer. And in Chicago, I really like going to The Elephant and Castle because they have really good bread pudding.
**Which TV/Radio show did you like that's not aired any more? I miss The Cannon Mess. And I miss Tom Marsland’s show. I miss 7th Heaven when it was good. I also *miss* other shows, but those are mostly still on air, and that’s not really the point of the question, is it?
**If you had a choice of learning another new language, what would you choose? What do you think that reflects about you? Latin. It reflects my nerdiness.

Courtesy of the Pianomomicle

Is it “A Wonderful Life?”

Via Morning Air (yes, for a Lutheran I listen to a lot of Catholic Radio). “It’s a Wonderful Life” is unpalatable to modern evangelical theology.

Why is George Bailey suicidal? Is it because he did something wrong? No. He did the things a “good son” and “good brother” and “good friend” and “good husband” should do. But he did not see any worldly reward for his actions.

I am the prototypical ISTJ. I do a lot of things because I feel duty bound to do them. People mistake “duty” for lack of desire or love. Rather, it is a part of love that members of the military or the Greatest Generation comprehend. People think duty is a bad thing, but it is really a good thing. It is a good thing I emotionally feel a sense of obligation to those I feel a sense of obligation to. It means, above all, that I like you, but also that I want to be generous with you. So, I relate to the inner conflict of George Bailey to an extent.

I think this is one of the reasons I despise the teachings of Robert Schuler and company so much. They continually stress your personal happiness over that of others. This is not a “Liz you should do all of this and more to the point where your ITP relapses and you almost bleed to death.” And I am also not talking about, “Liz you need to be happy for my sinful lifestyle” thing either. I’m talking about sacrificing on a personal level for the good of others. And when we do sacrifice for the good of others, we should have no expectations of return on our sacrifice.

One of my girlfriends is involved in teaching teens to engage in peer ministry. When I told her about Josh’s extended orders back this winter, she wanted to know what she could do. I’m a fairly low maintenance mil spouse. So, I told her, “Teach your students to sacrifice of themselves for the good of others.”

Sometimes, when we obey God, when we sacrifice personally for the sake of others, our lives get even harder. So, what do we need to do? We need to, like George Bailey, open our eyes and see the blessings we are to others and pray that God will help us through our trials. But over all, yes, it is a wonderful life and I’m grateful to be able to live it.

As an aside, I have a couple of things going on that require my extra attention. So posting will be sparse for the next couple of weeks.

The “Secret” behind the WTC attack…

Via the Heresy Hunter .

First off, anyone who buys any theology Oprah sells is nuts.

OK, so the key to “The Secret” is if I think happy thoughts, I will attract a happy life to myself, and if I think negatively, I will attract disaster.

“Dr. Joe Vitale: Everything that surrounds you right now in your life, including the things you're complaining about, you've attracted. Now I know at first blush that's going to be something that you hate to hear. You're going to immediately say, "I didn't attract the car accident. I didn't attract this particular client who gives me a hard time. I didn't particularly attract the debt." And I'm here to be a little bit in your face and to say, yes you did attract it. This is one of the hardest concepts to get, but once you've accepted it, it's life transforming."

Rhonda Byrnes: Often when people first hear this part of the Secret they recall events in history where masses of lives were lost, and they find it incomprehensible that so many people could have attracted themselves to the event. But the law of attraction, they had to be on the same frequency as the event. It doesn't necessarily mean they thought of that exact event, but the frequency of their thoughts matched the frequency of the event. If people believe they can be in the wrong place at the wrong time, and they have no control over outside circumstances, those thoughts of fear, separation, and powerlessness, if persistent, can attract them to being in the wrong place at the wrong time. (The Secret, Chapter: The Secret Made Simple, p. 27-28)”

Now, according to this logic, a soldier going off to war deserves it when he is injured or killed in the line of duty because they asked for it by their thoughts. There is no easy answer when evil things happen to nice people. And there is no easy answer for when life gets hard. The hard part is accepting that God is God and I am not God. I do not have the power to control things.

Someone asked me how I get through this deployment. I don’t. God gets through it for me. I’m just along for the ride. Anyone tells me I deserve what trouble I get from having a deployed spouse had better stay 100 meters back. I know “Army talk” and I am not afraid to tell such people what I think in such a language.

One of those blonde moments…

Now, I’m a little slow to catch on. I knew Issues, Etc., is an LCMS radio ministry. I knew it was broadcast for two hours on Sunday night, past my bed time. So, when Josh said he was downloading archives from Issues, Etc., I thought he was talking about the Sunday night show.

And occasionally, Erapp mentions an Issues, Etc., show, I, again, thought, “Oh, he must be talking about the same thing.” And then I realized, “Hey, such and such a date isn’t on a Sunday!” (How long was this lag? Like since this winter.) Issues, Etc., is indeed a daily show on KFUO out of Concordia St. Louis.

And another one of those moments one doesn’t automatically think of. So, Northwestern Bible College here in St. Paul has its own radio station. Moody Bible Institute has its own ministry. Wouldn’t it make sense if I automatically assumed Concordia would have the same? But I just wasn’t thinking like that.

Anyway, so on Thursday’s show (archive still on main show page), they were talking about broadcast ministries and if it is a good idea to have service DVDs.
I am partial to the CD ministry of our church. Our church has been giving me CDs to send to Josh and another soldier for the length of the deployment. And I don’t know if Josh has listened to all of them, but when he does, he loves that he is getting solid Lutheran teaching and listening to songs that have solid theology to them. I’m not going to offer an opinion about whether or not DVDs are a good or bad idea. But it’s food for thought when we’re talking about issues like a deployment. It’s a touch of home in a foreign land, at any rate.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

The 500 year old argument…

Chad the Elder reports that an LCMS member converted to Catholicism. The Albino Peacock briefly posts on The Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification.

I have some stuff that needs to get done in the next couple of weeks, so I’ll let you all do the reading:
The 95 Theses .
The LCMS position paper on the Catholic/Lutheran Debate on Justification .
The LCMS position paper on One Mediator, the Saints, and Mary .
The Book of Concord
The Catholic Catechism
ELCA’s position paper on The Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification The Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification
The First Things article Chad the Elder sites.
A Lutheran’s Case for Roman Catholicism by Robert C. Koons .

Have fun!

PS. Thanks to Albino Peacock for the easy linking!

Update: Rev. Paul McCain of Cyberbretheren posts a layman's responce to Robert C. Koons' conversion.

So since I’m Stribless…

I lied to the newspaper rep while they were trying to prove some use for the Star Tribune. I do actually miss something… The Comics. Thankfully, there is .

Luann has been doing a wounded vet story. I hope it comes off well.
Get Fuzzy .
Pearls Before Swine . Gotta love the duckies!

And there are many more to choose from!

Plus, one can get ones daily fix of For Better of For Worse at their site . Buckles has his own site. And, of course, Doonesbury has its own site.

Doonesbury even has a mil blog . (No really, it’s good.) Here’s food for thought from Spc. Wolfe, a Red Bull , a guy who calls himself Tadpole , An RN in a mil hospital , and a med company on their new sweetheart .

No, if it weren’t for canceling my subscription to the Strib, I wouldn’t have found The Sandbox.

Monday, June 04, 2007

The worst of people…

Are represented by guys like the Kamunen brothers.

“Luke Kaumunen began to wonder if he’d made a mistake the moment he arrived for basic training. He was still in the airport at Ft. Jackson, SC, with other members of his Minnesota Guard Unit, when an officer reprimanded him publicly for leaving a paper cup on his seat in the airport.” Good thing it was in South Carolina. Here in liberal Minnesota, it would have been some hippy environmentalist who would have also spat on him for wearing a uniform.

“His Twin Brother, Leif, started having doubts within weeks when a drill sergeant indicated they were probably heading to Iraq. Leif said that possibility had been downplayed by the recruiter who signed him up in June.” And the Drill Sergeant should have reprimanded him for being STUPID. Um, we’re at war in Iraq, and you signed up, and the MN National Guard has had its largest mobilization since WW2, and you didn’t think you’d have to go eventually?

“The recruiter, Sgt. Christ Beron, told him about a $20,000 signing bonus and, according to Luke, said that deployment was unlikely.

“’He told me that it’s really a rare occurrence that I was going to war,’ Luke said. And if he did go to Iraq, ‘he told me I would be sitting in the barracks somewhere fixing a vehicle.’

“Beron denies that. ‘I tell them that we are in a war, you are in a branch of the military…. I tell them that in 13 years, I have never been deployed… anywhere. I spend a lot of time telling them there is a possibility, but I can’t guarantee it one way or the other.’”

So, now it is the recruiter’s fault they are this irresponsible, gullible, and idiotic?

“Once at basic training, Luke said he hated the way drill sergeants yelled at recruits. And then he started hearing rumors about deployment to Iraq… He also learned that his unit, which was supposed to be fixing Army vehicles, would carry weapons. He was trained to use M-16s and grenade launchers.” Wow! Who doesn’t hate drill sergeants and who doesn’t hear rumors about deployments? And, imagine this, a soldier learning to use an M-16 and a grenade launcher. I mean, this is SO unusual. I can’t believe a soldier would ever be asked to learn to use a weapon needed to defend oneself.

“Maybe this shouldn’t have been a surprise (Ya’ think?), he conceded. But, ‘I have been living in a small town, trying to get a job,’ he said. ‘I don’t know what’s going on.’” Being from a small town does not excuse your ignorance. My husband is from a small town. He is not ignorant.

“None got their $20,000 bonus; recruits get half after finishing training and half after four years, Beron said.” The big mean recruiter tricked them into signing up and when they went AWOL wouldn’t give them their signing bonus. SOL.

I grew up to middle class parents, who stayed married, in the ‘burbs. So, I have no idea what it is like to be from a small town and without any future near home. But, ever since September 11, 2001, anyone who signs up for the military is fooling themselves if they think they will not have to go to war.

These guys want the type of benefits the military offers, without having to be in the military. They want us to feel sorry for them because they are from a small town and they think it makes them more susceptible to being tricked into signing up for the military. They do not want to be real men and accept responsibility for improving their lot in life and they do not want to accept responsibility for failing to see the very obvious consequences of their action.

They will now have less then honorable discharges, which will severely limit their options in the future; more so then sucking it in and serving your contract. And serving in the military can most certainly improve ones lot in life.
One of Josh’s battle buddies, Ed, finished three tech programs, plumber, lineman, and carpenter. At least I think the third is carpenter. Yeah, he got deployed, 10 weeks after he got married. But, when he comes back, he can seek employment in three well paying fields. And Ed is from an even smaller town with an even bleaker future.

The Kamunen boys are idiots. They deserve no respect. And they certainly didn’t deserve to have their story on the front page of the Star Tribune. The only good thing about their picture is it will make a diaper wipe for one of the mil kids I’ll see on Saturday.

And I have canceled my subscription to the Star Tribune. AWOL deserter cowards should not be given any sympathy or recognition by society. It would have been better if they had never enlisted as now everyone knows what stupid, immature, entitlement whores they are.

Josh and I will have a nice dinner courtesy of my Star Tribune refund check, when he gets home.

Well, it does look like I’m not the only one who is outraged . My favorite of these letters is from Mrs. Bigley: "My 5-foot-5, 19-year-old daughter successfully went through the same boot camp experience at Fort Jackson, S.C., two years ago while still in high school. She now proudly wears her Army boots and carries a large weapon, which she is trained to use.

I want to reassure the three brothers and their families as well as all of the Star Tribune's readers that, if called upon to do so, she can be counted on to defend everyone's lives with her own. "

Glad there are people like her in the world who will defend those poor boys. My husband won't. He'll be too busy with me.

Josh adds here, as he is having problems with Blogger: If one doesn't want to kill people they should look for a different line of work. I wonder if they were expecting a day camp and sleeping for 15-18 hours a day, too. I know S.C. has some great beaches which are no where in water.

"Mommy they yelled and me!" cried little Luke. "Oh, I'm sorry sweetie. Why dont you come home to mommy. She doesn't want you to stop breast feeding yet anyway." Or to put it in a Drill SGT way: "Do you want your mommy? Do you want to go crawl up her skirt and cry? Are you a man? I didnt think so!"

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Mil Spouse Scam Alert

We had a meeting to address when bad things happen to good soldiers a year ago, but I realized the past couple of weeks this topic needs to be addressed again.

Soldier Families: THERE IS NO NEED FOR THE RED CROSS TO CONTACT YOU. You may contact the Red Cross and they can contact your soldier, but the Red Cross does not contact you if something bad happens.

Second, let’s say your service member gets hurt (God forbid); the commanding officer, a doctor, or if it’s not that serious, your soldier will call you. They won’t need your Social Security Number or anything. They know who you are. And you won’t need to sign for his treatments. You do not own your service member’s body, the military owns his body.

DO NOT GIVE YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER OR YOUR SERVICE MEMBERS SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER OVER THE PHONE (or to anyone). And if something is different then common procedure, and there is a proper procedure for everything, call your FRG leader or the rear det. They can find stuff out fast.

And for those who prey upon service members families, there is a special place in Hell for you. (And people wonder why I don’t wear a name tag in church or commonly identify myself as a mil spouse.)

Feeling Heather’s Pain…

Though I wouldn’t do a high ropes course… and I did not do the high ropes course even though my IV staff member said I was not a team player (and what else is new?) and that I was not fulfilling my obligation to the gospel (huh?) and stuff like that. But good for Heather!

So, Josh was talking about adrenalin rushes and how he thinks it would be a good idea to go sky diving when he gets back. Furthermore, he thinks he should be able to take my new toy… um… the DVD recorder I bought for him with on his excursion. He would also prefer I go with…


Nope. I will stand on firm ground and cheer the man on. I will assure him that standing on firm ground and watching him jump out of an airplane is indeed the best idea for a date ever. But I will not, I repeat, will not, jump out of a perfectly good airplane just because it sounds like fun (or for any other reason for that matter… jumping out of a broken plane is a different story though). One of those moments where not even “Sam I Am” could persuade me.

Heather is much braver then me. (Though I think she would agree that standing on firm ground and cheering is much more fulfilling.)

Friday, June 01, 2007

Children’s Church…

Children’s church is when all of the children 8 years and leave the sanctuary so they don’t distract the adults from listening to the sermon. Something I had to adjust to in Lutheran Church is children sit through the service. I’ve learned not to be distracted.

At first, I just thought, “Oh, this is how Lutherans do things,” and left it at that. But I was reading the short preface to Luther’s Large Catechism and found this (24-27):

Then we would have all together five whole parts of Christian doctrine. These should be taught constantly and be required learning for children. You should hear them recited word for word. For you must not rely on the idea that young people will learn and retain these things from the sermon alone. When these parts have been well learned you may supplement and strengthen them by also setting before them some psalms or hymns, which have been composed on these parts of the catechism. Lead the young into the Scriptures this way, and make progress in them daily.

However it is not enough for them to understand and recite these parts according to the words alone. The young people should also be made to attend the preaching, especially during the time that is devoted to the catechism. Then they may hear it explained and may learn to understand what every part contains, so that they can recite it the way they have heard it. Then, when asked, they may give a correct answer, so that preaching may not be useless and fruitless. For this reason we exercise such diligence in preaching the catechism often is so that it may be taught to our youth, not in a high and clever way, but briefly and with the greatest simplicity. In this way it will enter the mind easily and be fixed in memory.

WOW! In the above paragraphs, Luther describes a two part ministry. First, parents teach their children sound Christian doctrine from home. Second, pastors preach sermons in a simple manner so Christian teachings are fixed in the memory. When kids aren’t part of the entire church service, they miss out on part of the ministry.