Friday, August 27, 2010

Sailing... sailing... over the ocean blue

We just got back from a fantastic 5 days of vacation on a cruise, with a kilt band that we have followed for years. Now normally, cruising isn't the kind of vacation I go for - the last one I was on, I was a teenager and the next person in age who wasn't a member of the crew must have been in their 50s - can we say bored outa my mind? THIS one, there were kidlets who were teeny tiny babies, and every age inbetween. We found some wonderful people to spend time with, going on a trip like this meant that those of us who were there with the band, were very much of like minds, or at least had one thing in common, and that started a conversation... which evolved into another and another. The private concerts, and marching down to the pub in Bermuda from the ship - the pipes and drums leading us - well, y'all HAD to be there! the Big concert on the ship - the boys were absolutely on fire - they have a fiddler that just has to be heard, and gold medal winning pipers who are stunning, the drummers are stupendous as well.

now, back to work at the new business - got a couple of clients and hoping for a couple more. Also - starting classes for my psych degree, which is going to be interesting, and a few other irons in the fire.

Tomorrow - the Renn Faire - see some of our new friends, and stay as far away from the Beckian/ Palin Grizzlies who are going to be hanging around downtown DC. I swear, I can feel the IQ of DC plummeting as they gather - to listen to a self serving drug addled twerp and the quitter half governor - don't they have another KKK rally to go to? or did they leave their sheets at the cleaners? Hmmm wonder if Beck has enough Vicks Vaporub to induce the weeping he seems to think everyone believes is actually heartfelt... gag.

I am really pissed that he's wrapping his bullshit in the flag - that he's using the military as an excuse for this charade. He's such a jackass.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Help a Shelter

Guys - I'm asking for your help. I work with Fancy Cats Rescue Team in Virginia - we have a lot of cats that come in from high kill shelters, who are abandoned by their owners (including some who are military PCSing) and their vet bills can be really high! Just for the exam/shots/spay & neuter, it gets expensive. So, could you go HERE, search for Fancy Cats Rescue Team in Virginia and vote? when you get the confirmation email, it'll also give you the chance to ask for a reminder email - sign up and vote for us every day? Please? From Emma - my Fancy Cat and JJ. Thank you.


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Navajo Code Talker Day

Did you know that it's Navajo Code Talker Day today? These men took their native language and as radio operators during WW2 drove the enemy absolutely nuts. Hundreds of men owe their lives to these quiet, unassuming, forgotten heroes. Take a minute, go to their website, tell them thanks.


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Counselors - anyone been to one?

Xposted at LeftFace.

I'm interested in hearing from my readers - have you ever used one of the counselors provided by either TriCare, Military OneSource, ACS - any of them? I had a lousy experience, during the Guard deployment, and spent most of my time explaining what the military is like, what deployment is like, translating terms! It drove me nuts, didn't help much either.... I've heard other stories, but I really want to know what YOU guys have experienced.


Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Happy Birthday - Coast Guard

As the daughter of a proud Coastie from WW2 - on the best ship in the fleet - USCG Spencer - I have a very soft spot for the Coasties. From the wonderful men on the cutters who were on the Atlantic Convoys, the Aleutians, the Pacific Island Hopping to the superb men and women flying choppers into some of the worst weather in the world to rescue seamen - HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Army Wives at Belvoir

X posted from Left Face

I was invited to attend the Army Wives special screening at Fort Belvoir – and this time, I’m press! As a blogger, I’ve never been able to attend anything as “press”. The room was packed with servicemembers and their spouses, cameras and phone cameras at the ready. The announcement came - and to thunderous applause, in came the stars of the evening –Kim Delaney, Brian McNamara (the Holdens from Army Wives,) then General and Mrs Casey, and Vice President and Dr. Biden.

Cameras - GO!

Kim Delaney (Claudia Joy Holden) worked the crowd, greeting everyone with a smile and a handshake, enjoying herself. Brian McNamara, (General Holden) looked very distinguished in his glasses, he and his young son were also having a great time. And yes, he is as good looking in person, with a huge smile and lots of enthusiasm.

The speeches started, with General Casey getting the ball rolling, telling us he was there to introduce his boss – Mrs. Casey! He thanked all of us for our service, that he was impressed by the strength we have shown throughout the past 9 years. General Casey confessed that he had turned into a “groupie” by watching his second episode of “Army Wives”. Mrs. Casey spoke about her connection with Dr. Biden, and the fact that they both have sons in the service. Then she cracked everyone in the room up (you could tell who really watches Army Wives) when she plaintively asked why the nasty one HAD to be a 4 star General’s wife! (From what I know of Sheila Casey, she is the complete antithesis of Lenore!)

The Vice President spoke to us about having just returned from Ft. Drum, greeting families on the return of their servicemembers from deployment Of course, he referred to his son, and his pride in his service in Iraq, how he felt as a Dad of a deployed soldier, and choked up when he told us about meeting a West Point Graduate at BAMC who, being a triple amputee, apologized to the Vice President for not standing and saluting. When he spoke about being the husband of Dr. Biden, he told us about the decision that she reached after the Iowa primary defeat, - wanting to work with military families, that she had been struck by the resilience she had seen when meeting with military groups – and he repeated his firm conviction that the rest of the country needs to get behind the 1%of the population who do the work in these 2 wars. He introduced Dr. Biden who talked about the military families she had met, and how it felt to film the 6 minutes on the show – it took over 16 hours! Her feelings about being a military mom – “I’ll be doing something and a thought just flies through my head – I hope Beau is ok.” and we all understood exactly how she felt. Then she self deprecatingly told us she hoped we’d all forget her 6 minutes in the morning! (No, ma’am, we didn’t!)

The show started and it was great to see that…. no, I’m not going to tell you anything. You’ll have to tune in on August 8th. I will tell you that Tanya Biank, the author of the book that the show is based on, has a cameo, and was at the event. After years of chatting online with her, or on the phone, I was so glad to finally meet her in person.

After the show, they all stayed, for over two hours. Kim Delaney, Brian McNamara, the Caseys, the Bidens, they made the effort to talk to every person there, posed for hundreds of pictures, smiled and hugged, talked and listened to us. Now if you think the biggest crowd with the loudest noise was around the TV stars – you’d be surprised. Vice President Biden was the man with the most groupies there. If you meet and talk to him, you’ll see that when he’s talking to you, you are the one person in the room he had to speak to, his level of focus is amazing! Dr. Biden – for me it was military mom to military mom, and that’s a connection that is indefinable, it just IS.

Yes, to the ladies in my audience, “General Holden” is as gorgeous as he is on screen. And after getting a picture with the “pretend” general, standing with General Casey – it’s a lot different – that command presence is very very real. It’s palpable, and he’s a gracious gentleman. His “boss” (Mrs. C) was as always, down to earth and ready to talk to any military spouse about anything. Kim Delaney is a lovely lady, and stood on those heels for hours - with a smile for everyone!

Yeah, I’m a fan. Of all of them. Thank you for a wonderful evening!