The Common Mommy Denominator
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
I took my daughter to the store to do our usual shopping, and as we ambled down the first aisle an elderly gentleman – spry and active as someone 50 years his junior – commented on my daughter’s “adorable blonde head”. I noticed the Veteran’s pin on his hat right away and lately have been enjoying reading Tom Brokaw’s The Greatest Generation – a nonfiction book about those who lived through and fought in WWII – so rather than just thank him for his compliment and moved on, I asked him about his service record. I’d like to tell you what he shared with me in the five or so minutes we stood there chatting.
This gentleman turned 16 in 1944. He immediately signed up for active duty in the military – he became a Marine – and lied about his age to do so. He was found out just before he was supposed to ship out to the South Pacific and was kept in the states, to his great dismay. Boot camp had made him a man, he said, and he was ready to prove himself to God and country...but as he turned 17, the war was ending, and he had a decision to make. He wanted to serve. “Stick around, Corporal” said the Marines. “You’ll be shipping out sooner than you think.”
A few years later he went to Korea. He says it was there that he was REALLY made a man; he’d been wrong the first time. He was fascinated by the people and culture, fought with everything in him, and said he nearly froze to death every night every winter. When his service was complete, he had a decision to make. He still wanted to serve...but he wanted to serve somewhere a little warmer. “Stick around, Sergeant,” said the Marines. “You’ll be shipping out sooner than you think...and it’ll be warm there.”
And he did. And then he served in Vietnam. Still he was fascinated by the people and culture, fought with everything in him – and bolstered the morale of many a man who learned he had fought in, survived, and returned from Korea only to lead them now – and said he practically baked in his skin and took a shower in his clothes just walking outside every day he served there. When his service was complete, he had a decision to make, and he served until 1973 when finally he retired.
Twenty years later the US became involved in Desert Storm, and he called up the Marines, offering his services and citing former military service. They asked where he had served, and when they found it he was just a little older than their average active-duty corpsman, they politely declined his help. He was disappointed. “I could have at least sat behind a desk in Afghanistan or Saudi and done paperwork,” he reflected sadly. “They can always use someone with a little experience...but I suppose it is your generation’s turn to protect this great nation of ours.”
Indeed, sir. You have served honorably and valiantly in the defense of these United States to ensure my freedom, and God bless you for it. It is our turn. We must overcome our entitlement attitudes and see this country for what it is...for what it was intended to be...to actively contribute to it and to make it even better if it is within our power to do so.
That gentleman made me proud to be an American, proud of our servicemen and women, proud to be a conservative who values our country’s Constitution and wishes to take personal responsibility for my life instead of letting my government grow so big that it makes my decisions for me. Memorial Day will take on new, extra, and a profound meaning for me this year, thanks to this aged Marine and those who fought – some who died – as he served. God bless him, God bless them all, God bless our country, and God bless us as we face the challenge of protecting this, our beloved country, from foes both foreign and domestic.
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Thanks for all your prayers, thoughts, advice, and encouragement, friends! We appreciate you pulling for us, and we're glad to say it has (or is about to) all paid off...and will pay off for you, too, next time you want to come visit SoCal and need a free hotel!
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
Jennifer's wedding day was fast approaching. Nothing could dampen her excitement - not even her parent's nasty divorce. Her mother had found the PERFECT dress to wear, and would be the best-dressed mother-of-the-bride ever!
A week later, Jennifer was horrified to learn that her father's new young wife had bought the exact same dress as her mother! Jennifer asked her father's new young wife to exchange it, but she refused. ''Absolutely not! I look like a million bucks in this dress, and I'm wearing it,'' she replied.
Jennifer told her mother who graciously said, ''Never mind sweetheart. I'll get another dress. After all, it's your special day.''
A few days later, they went shopping, and did find another gorgeous dress for her mother. When they stopped for lunch, Jennifer asked her mother, ''Aren't you going to return the other dress? You really don't have another occasion where you could wear it..."
Her mother just smiled and replied, ''Of course I do, dear.....I'm wearing it to the rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding.''
LOOOOOOOOOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!! What do they say? Don't get mad...get ahead. :) Enjoy!
Monday, February 22, 2010
4. Moll Flanders: We are all one being. And I am Moll. Darn that sense of self! (And we can't forget to mention Morgan Freeman's "Sent ya that...how'd ya like it?" Or Aisling Corcoran's "Well, I's a need to pee in my schedule!" or "How do you know? You're not a dog!" Aaaah.)
Friday, February 19, 2010
Monday, February 15, 2010
Lots of things have been pissing me off lately, and I'm not even still on the hcg diet, so that's saying something. (EVERYTHING was pissing me off then!) And oddly enough, that's part of what has been pissing me off.
After hcg I've been trying to go back to a "normal" diet...which means introducing fats, sugar, and refined flour into my diet. I want to die. I'm in pain, cramped, sluggish, re-fattening, and getting headaches. My body HATES the "traditional" Western diet. We were NOT made to eat #2 feed corn...which happens to be in just about EVERYTHING we consume. I could go into this for the next 3 days because I've read, seen, heard, and now know enough I could write my own book about it, but the bottom line is that we get fat and our bodies give out thanks primarily to inedible #2 (not yummy sweet!) corn. And I'm bitter at our government for it. VERY bitter. But until we have a home, I don't see much of a way around it.
So then there's bitterness # 2: short sales. They take FOREVER. Why? Because of the sheer volume of short sales and foreclosures out there. I realize the economy sucks, and if you're on the verge of foreclosure and its been delayed months and months because the bank just hasn't gotten around to you yet, I'm sure you're feeling blessed. We, however, are feeling cursed. We just want to get our kids into a home. That's all. Have some more room, be in a better, safer area, be able to make new friends at church and in our neighborhood, and maybe grow a garden to feed ourselves quality plants on the cheap(er). Offer on our dream home? Middle of December. Haven't heard anything...middle of February. And we're the only offer, people. Seriously. I blame The Greedy. And I'm bitter.
I'm not just bitter at The Greedy, though...I'm bitter at gays and college students. The whole "support same-sex marriage" bit is all over facebook again, and it makes me cringe. And I also cringe at the people who post and favor and "fan" pro-gay-marriage stuff and then get pissed off if you have the audacity to disagree. Hey, they want to publicly support? Why can't I publicly defend REAL marriage?
Because the bottom line is that gays don't want gay "marriage" - they have civil unions, which legally MUST be line-for-line the same thing - they want those of us against their unnatural behavior to have to validate their choice in sex partners by CALLING them married.
So gays piss me off because they refuse to respect my faith, and college students (not all of you, surely, not to worry) piss me off because they refuse to respect my experience. Lately it seems like so many of the college kids I know - or some of their friends - have been acting as though they are God's intellectual gift to us all. "I took a class about that, so I know more than you." Or "that's the old way of thinking...my professor has taught me the new way, so here you go!"
People, that's like being the world's best parent...before you have kids. I don't give a good flying fart about what you THINK you know, or what your professor pretends to know. Don't you go being disrespectful of me and my experience just because I mispell something on my blog or use the wrong word on facebook...you were up all night on a drinking binge, but I've been up all night for the last week with a sick child. Kiss off, college kid.
And finally, kiss off, "Seriously So Blessed." I've heard a lot about you lately, you and your celebrated irony, so I finally read some of your work. And you're a hag.
Not because I think you're real, but because you garner attention and laughter by mocking your average Mormon Mommy Blog. Yes, there are loads of Mormon Mommy Blogs to be had. That's because the only people who have time to chronicle the hiccups in the banality of their lives, plus have a desire to seek out comraderie and a connection with other adults, are the people who stay home with their kids, and in this day and age, that more often that not means a Mormon stay-home Mom. We deserve support and understanding, not your miserable, cruel mockery. And even if it wasn't intended that way, that's how the media understands, and is what has garnered you your fame. And you're proud of that fame and have done nothing to correct their understanding, so I'm fairly certain you intend to make a mockery of us stay-home moms slogging through day by day. That means you're one ugly TAMN, lady (or ladies?).
So my hide has been chapped. And now that I've vented thoroughly (thank you), I'm going to go rub some Desitin on my tushy and clean up some more of my three year-old's vomit. Cheers and good day!
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
With what, you ask?
Well, let me tell you:
DRAFT 1 OF THE 1ST NOVEL OF THE UNBOUND SERIES IS COMPLETE!!!!!!!!!!!
Yes, you read that right...my manuscript is finished. All 27 chapters plus a pro-and-an-epi-logue. 626 kilobytes of typing, or 210 typewritten pages, which translates to a 420 page novel!
Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh. Feelin' good right now.
Of course, now it must be revised. Edited. Torn to shreds and rebuilt to be a thousand times better than it is now.
And for the moment, I have my blinders on, so I need readers to wade through it and tell me where I'm going wrong...or going right, as the case may be.
A caveat: I am NOT cradling this thing to my chest and proclaiming it my baby. Well, okay, I did the moment I was finished...but five minutes later I was over it. It's ready to shred.
So...if you're interested...let me know. I have a book for you to read. It's not hardbound, or even softbound, but it is a digital file capable of being emailed to those eager (translation: skeptical but willing for my sake) readers willing to sacrifice their time, effort, and sanity on my book.
Hey, at least it's more or less grammatically correct. And I don't think I ever use the word "sparkly," so that's a plus. Oh, and I planned the entire thing start to finish...so it has a plot. And characters. Some of whom are well-developed.
Still deciding whether it's a young adult or an adult fiction novel, but I'm pretty sure it falls into the "paranormal romance" category. No, it's not Twilight. There are no vampires, it's not a Romeo and Juliet tale, and, well...you'll just have to read it.
Provided, of course, you have the time and sanity.
ANYWAY...........................I DEEEED EEEET! WOOHOOOOOOO!!!!! (And now the real work begins. Woohoo now being followed by a big sigh.)
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Working on Chapter 23 of the book as I type this. Okay, not as I type this, or I'd be typing in my book file, which file, however, IS open and minimized on my desktop. In other words, as soon as I'm done here, I'll be working on Chapter 23. Considering that - thanks to Adrienne and Cory and Katrina and Ana - I have now finished 8 chapters in 6 days, I'm feeling pretty proud of myself...especially since I honestly had not touched the book since Thanksgiving.
9 chapters (including the one I'm working on) plus an epilogue to go. Life is good. Now let's see if I can do it!
On the home front...and I do mean home...we have an offer on a home that has been or will be submitted to the bank...the only offer that will be submitted to the bank. Apparently it has been on the market for the last couple of months, and the other offer they received for the home was lower than ours...which works out very well for us. It has ALSO worked out well for us that the photos posted on the internet to advertise the home in the first place were absolute CRAP...the home is SOOOOO much more beautiful than any of those photos showed, and I don't understand why they selected those photos in the first place...but I don't care, either. It has worked in our favor. That rocks.
So now, since the home is a short sale (ie. distress sale...the people living in it want to sell it and are working with the bank to sell the home for less than they themselves paid for it so they can walk away without destroying their own credit), we're pretty much just waiting on the bank to get back to us with a "that's way too low an offer, go house hunt somewhere else!" or a "let's start escrow now." With our luck, it'll be a "hunt somewhere else!", but we're trying to be optimistic because we really do love the home: it's in a REALLY nice neighborhood in Lake Elsinore, is 3200 sq ft with a 3 car garage and an island kitchen, and has 4 bedrooms, a den, a formal living and dining area, a casual living and dining area, and a whole lot of extra, well, extras, that I can't remember off the top of my head. In other words, we REALLY want it...which is why I'm worried that we're NOT going to get it.
Cest la vie.
Kids are good, Jason's good, (working long hours still, but at least he enjoys his job now!) and we're looking forward to a quickly-approaching visit from the Keith&Wendy family grouping. Other than that, we have a few playdates scheduled, I'm writing my fingers bloody, and I can't think of one single thing more to say! Thanks for checking in, and I'll try to have something intelligent to post as an update soon!
MAGNETIC CHIP CLIPS.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
I looked at her and said, "What the heck?"
She parroted, "Whatda het?"
I reached into my ear and pulled out the corn kernel, asking her to put it in the trash, and she marched to the garbage, threw it in, and summarily announced "I'm mad at you, Mom!"
I just smiled.
When it didn't have the desired effect, she asked, "Do you mont do know my?" (Translation: Do you want to know why?")
I said, "Sure, tell me why."
And she stared at me, her nostrils flared, obviously grumpy, and stated at the top of her lungs: "I don't know!"
Must be hard being 3.
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Fully boned, laid flat, and ready for a line of stuffing down the middle!
Speaking of that line of stuffing...okay, it was more like a giant log of stuffing...
People, this chicken baked @ 350 in 90 minutes (and probably less, but I wanted to be sure), the stuffing was built-in and fully cooked, and the stuffing surrounding it took the cake; crispy, butter-soaked, and hedonistic to the max. No, really, check it out...compare the photo above it to the stuffing in this shot. OH...MY...GOODHEAVENS.
The masterpiece. Wow. (No, not the cheese-bacon-sour cream mashed potatoes. Not the Pillsbury Crescent Rolls, either. Geez.) That, my friends, is a one inch-thick cross-section slice of white-and-dark-meat boned chicken roll-up with stuffing in the middle. And once you've had it that way, you'll never, ever, ever go back. (Unless, of course, you screw up the chicken when you bone it, and then you'll just be mad at me. But it's a trial-and-error process...don't forget that. My first boned chicken wasn't so pretty either.)
If you want help boning a chicken, let me know...or do a google search for deboning a chicken. (Is it boning or deboning? Boning would be getting the bones out, and deboning would be getting the bones out, too, wouldn't? Why waste the extra syllable on de-boning?) Anyway...YUUUUMMM. Jason's new favorite way to eat roast chicken...plus, he gets white AND dark meat in every bite!
Monday, December 21, 2009
I wrote a post the other day about Jay's new job and our house hunt, but apparently it set off a bunch of bells and whistles where he now works, and he was asked to have me remove my blog post. I never got to...Jason just hopped on and deleted it. It took me 90 minutes. Now it's gone. I'm a little sad, but I'm now going to spend...oh, about 10 minutes repeating myself in brief.
Brief. Yeah, right. We're talking about ME here.
Anyway, Jason now works for...a company...in south Orange County. AND HE LOVES IT.
They treat him beautifully, he already knows everyone he works with thanks to some prior connections, and he's absolutely thrilled...particularly since he is no longer an accountant at a public firm. That means NORMAL hours (no more 23 1/2 hour days, Lord willing), competitive pay, and a couple bosses instead of 15 of them. It also means he has his own desk and work space, sees the same people every day, and so long as the company isn't filing with the SEC, knows when he'll be heading to work and when he'll be getting home.
Which means we're here for a while. (Possibly forever.) So we want to get settled. Which means buying a home. And the best bang for your buck is east of OC, meaning Corona, Riverside, or via the 74, a pretty straight shot from the new job, Lake Elsinore. We've chosen Elsinore, where we're hoping to find a home over 2500 sq ft for under 250k. There, that's not unreasonable. (Whoda thunk there would be a place an hour from OC where you could buy a home for that price?!)
Yes, yes, yes, the Ortega Hwy is treacherous. Yes, yes, yes, the people in Lake Elsinore are not your average Los Angeleans (Thank HEAVENS!). Yes, yes, yes, parts of the 15 are a pit. But outside of Mello Roos, we're in love, and SO INCREDIBLY GRATEFUL to Maureen and Bishop Christensen for their tireless efforts and boundless patience as our realtors.
If you're looking for a home in Southern California, boy, have I got a pair of realtors for you! They're educating us on the process, helping us weather the disappointments, and are eternally optimistic for our eventual settling...and we love them! THANKS, CHRISTENSENS!
So...yeah. That's all. Jason's been looking to leave the firm for a while, and when this came along, he was interested not only to get out of the firm but because the position is a really excellent position at a really excellent company. And I'm thrilled for him. From interview to hiring it took about a month, and Jason's patience paid off. In spades. Did I mention he loves it (at this nameless-but-fabulous company) there?
No honeymoon for a while, but a home is forthcoming, and we'll update you as we progress! Thanks to EVERYONE for your support!