Tuesday, August 11, 2009

And we're off...........

Ok, so I have FINALLY set in motion the Army wife pin up calendar! I have chosen the girls and came up with a sketch of the theme for each month as well as ideas for the outfits. Now all I need is the funding right? WRONG! As a friend was telling me today I need to get a domain name as well as getting things started for the IRS. It all just seems so over whelming! Am I in over my head?!? It seemed like a good idea at the time but now............... I know it is for a good cause and according to the feedback that I got on Twitter there seems to be some interest in it but I want to make sure that it would be worth all of the time and effort that I will be putting into it! Any feedback that I can get would be very helpful. I will base my decision on whether or not I go forward with this project on the responses that I get to this blog. Please help me out and leave a comment. Thank you in advance!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Day 10 - Death of a legend

On June 25th 2009 around 5:26pm (EST) Michael Jackson was pronounced dead. Sources say it was due to a cardiac arrest. Latest news is that the police are looking for his personal physician because apparently he gave him a shot od Demerol shortly before his cardiac arrest. His family thinks that the doctor gave him too much.

Now I know there are a lot of people who didn't like him due to his child molestations allegations and his eccentric lifestyle. I am the first to admit that I did not care for what was going on in his personal life, but the truth is that the man was a true musical genius! His music reached all across the globe and I don not think that there is a man, woman or child out there today who does not know who is is or has never listened to his music. He has influenced an entire generation with his music and dancing.

Who hasn't seen Thriller? I remember when I was little my brother and I would LOVE to watch it because our sister was SO scared of it that she wouldn't even come into the therefore giving us a break from her! Michael Jackson was ALWAYS playing in our house. My mom loved to dance with us and the song that has always came to my mind is "Wanna Be Startin Something", she loved to dance to that song.

I remember going to Disneyland MANY moons ago. While we were there we got to see Captain EO in 3D. It stared Michael Jackson and Anjelica Houston. 18 years later, I still remember that! That is the type of impact that he had on me! I remember walking to Walmart carying my CD walkman listening to Thriller. I repeated Thriller over and over so I could learn the words. Who hasn't tried to learn the dance moves?!? I remember seeing a video of someone's reception where the bride and groom (maybe it was the whole wedding party) danced to Thriller. Not sure if it was their frist dance or not, but it was funny!

The type of talent he had is only around once in a lifetime. I never understood why everone was crying when I saw clips of Elvis Presley's death. Now I do. To me, this is what it must have felt like to my mom when Elvis died. She grew up listening to his music just as I grew up listening to Michael Jackson.

If you watch videos of his performences, like the 1984 Grammy Awards, he was an awesome entertainer! No one will be able to repeat what he had done for the music industry. he had such a profound influence on so many through his moves and music ranging from the "average Joe" to some of the well known recording artists like Madonna, Britney Spears, Cher and Celion Dion.

You don't have to like the man to LOVE the music!

R.I.P. Michael Joseph Jackson. You will live forever through your music and influence on the music industry.

Michael Joseph Jackson
August 29 1958 - June 25 2009

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Day 9 - Catching up

So I know it has been a while since I have posted! I have been a busy little bee! We have a lot to discuss; there is the Wii Active, the calendar and the book.

Wii Active - I really can only do the Wii Active durnig the week. I work full-time and hubby is deployed so the only time I really have to do anything is after work. I get off from work at 1630 and go to my friends house to do the Active and then I go pick up my daughter at 1800. So needless to say that my schedule is off from everyone else's even though I did start on June 1 like everyone else did. So, so far it has really worked me. I HATE the running! I was never a runner. I think I can actually walk faster than I can run. My favorite is anything sports related! I especially like tennis. I think I could really tome up and lose weight if I could just get my eating on track. During the week I usually make myself a smoothie or I will go and buy one here at a local place (along with a blueberry bagel w/butter) and for lunch 8 times out of 10 I will get Subway. I do slip on occasion, but I'm only human! During the week I usually don't eat much, if anything at all. I recall eating 4 string cheese and some water with Crystal Light, or a couple, ok, several handfuls of dry cerealand a few root beers. My schedule weeknights don't allow for eating. I come home aroun 1830 - 2000 depending on if I need to go to the store or an FRG meeting, I then feed Shannon and let her play for a bit while I clean up something. I TRY and clean up after myself during the week but most of the time I only wash out her bottles. Then around 2000-2100 I give Shannon a bottle while twittering or checking email or going on facebook. Once she is asleep I put her in her crib and take the lap top with me to bed and I am usually on til about 2300. So as you can see, I have my priorities messed up but it works for me!

The Calendar - As most of you know, and for those of you that don't, I did a pin up photo shoot with a local photographer to send to the hubby. I LOVED it! I didn't think I would because I don't feel I am where I need to be for those kinds of pics (I feel those kind of pics are a privlege, NOT a right, like spandex and bikinis). Anyways, so after I had them done I had someone on twitter ask me who sponsored me to get the pics done?! SPONSORED?? I guess the Army since I payed for them myself. This conversation led to an idea. What if I put together a calendar of Army wives in the classic pin-up poses and sell them. The proceeds could go to a non-profit that supports our troops, a way for us wives to support those that support our husbands. I put it out there to my twitter friends (you know who you are) and everyone loved the idea! After I started getting messages that people would buy it (still not sure if they were serious or being nice) I decided I would try and get er done! So a week into this process I have talked to the same photographer that did my pics (also an Army wife) and she is on board to do them at a discounted rate. She is going to get with her hair and makeup gals to see if they would be interested. I put an ad on craigslist asking for Army wives that would like to participate and got an overwhelming response! Now I am just waiting until the photographer to come back from vacation (he hubby just got back from Iraq) and we will discuss details. I will also be asking my aunt, a seamstress in AZ, if she would donate/discount her time and skills to make the outfits. I have also decided that when someone purchases a calendar they will get to decide which non-profit they would like their money to go to. Now I am going to be realistic, not ALL the money will go to the non-profit, we will have some go to the NP and some stay so we can crank out more calendars. Now, I know it's not all about the Army (DeltaWhiskey1), so I thought that I would "test" it out with Army wives first and if it sells, I will do one with every branch of the military! I have my fingers crossed!

The Book - I'm not quite sure that I put this out there, but I am "working" for the new Army Wife Magazine (launching in the Fall 2009), I will be "reporting" here from Fort Drum about things going on here and in the outside community as well as doing an advice column called "Letters to Limerick". The person responsible for putting the magazine together is also going to be putting a book together. It will be letters of encouragement and advice from Army wives to Army wives. There will be many chapters like Deployment (before, during and after), Finance, Dealing With Loss and Education. I am one that gets the letters, reads them and determines what section it should fall under and if it should be included. I think it will be GREAT! It's basically a book of other Army wives saying "I wish I knew about this....." or "When I was dealing with this I found this helpful........" Like I said, it should be great!

Anyways, if anyone out there is interested in getting involved in any of the great things that I am helping out with/heading, just let me know! If you want to help financially or with a service you can twitter me (JenTheArmyWife) or if you would like to write a question to the advice column or write for the book you can email me at jen@armywifemagazine.com.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Day 8 - Wii Active Training Day 1

I know that this is a little late but I had a photo shoot that I was doing all day yesterday, but that is another blog story!

So, day 1 of the Wii Active Personal Trainer. I really think that doing some of the pre-made exercises helped out a lot before I started this journey! I knew what to expect and I knew what I could do. I have it on the medium setting right now. I enjoy doing this because it feels like you are playing a game! Seeing the other "you" on the screen helps out! One thing that I wish they had an option for is actually doing the 30 day challenge with a friend. You can do the pre-made workouts together, but you can't do it with a friend?!

So Day 1 went well for me because of getting to know some of the exercises before hand! I think the hardest thing that I am going to have to accomplish is the eating. I usually have a smoothie for breakfast, Subway for lunch and something small and handy for dinner. Lately it has been string cheese or the Minute Rice brown rice in the single servings container. I have a 5 month old and as most of you parents out there know, she comes first. By the time I feed her, bathe her and put her to bed it's too late for me to eat a "real" meal. This is something that I am working on but once the hubby comes home from Afghanistan it will be better. Before he left I ALWAYS made a complete meal. With him gone, I have no one to cook for until Shannon starts eating real food. Until then it's string cheese, water or anything else that is quick and portable!

Since I didn't do it yesterday (and I'm sure my Wii will yell at me) I am going to be doing day 2 today. I did hear that if you miss a day the program auto-corrects itself and makes you work out harder to compensate. *SAYS SARCASTICLY* Yippy I can't wait!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Day 7 - Wii Active Personal Trainer

I just purchased a Wii Active Personal Trainier because I've heard good things about it. I went to the website to find out a little more about it and I discovered that they will be doing another 30 day challenge starting on June 1st. I will be doing that challenge and bloggin about it everyday during the challenge as well as tweeting about it. Many of you have asked me to let you know how it is. I hope by blogging my progress it will help you to determine if you would like to get one as well. I will start blogging on June 1st with my measurements so everyone knows the start point. On June 15th's blog I will put my measurements halfway through and then my final results on the last day of the challenge1 I hope that you all will make comments and keep me motivated because Lord knows I'm gonna need it!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Day 6 - Television VS Reality

I will be the first one to tell you how much I LOVE TV. It's like a mini-vacation that your brain gets to take, a little break throughout your day. I know that every show/movies is mostly made for the entertainment value, even if it is based on a true story/real life. Even reality TV shows now-a-days are edited and "tweeked" to make it more entertaining. I think most people agree with me on this, but there are those few, and sometimes even more, that think that what they see on TV HAS to be the way it actually is.

When my husband joined the Army, he was looking forward to Basic Training. The reason? He had watched Full Metal Jacket and thought that that was how Basic Training was going to be. The yelling in your face, beat you senseless without laying a finger on you type discipline. Boy, was he disappointed! They did none of that! They very rarely yelled at you and since it's the kinder, gentler Army, it's even worse.

Now, for the BIG one........Army Wives. Let me start off by saying that I LOVE that show! I love the story and the characters. most people don't realize that it's just that, a STORY! It's entertainment, nothing more, nothing less. Let me give you some examples.

Housing - My mom visited recently. I took her on post to show her around. I told her that we would go by housing and the first thing she asked me was "Is it like the houses on Army Wives?". Let me tell you, it's nothing like those houses. Most houses on post are duplexes or 4 home apartments unless you are either VERY lucky or an officer. Although they are building new houses, they are still duplexes for the most part. The newer houses also look a little nicer than what is portrayed on the show but there are posts that have worse looking houses.

FRG - The way that the have the FRG on there is fictional as well. The way and FRG works is it is by Company/Battery, not by installation! In the show, all of the characters are in one FRG. Claudia-Joy, being the Post Commanders wife, would NOT be in the same FRG as everyone else.

Hump Bar explosion - There is an episode (at the end of Season 1) where a Soldier follows his wife to the Hump Bar, a local bar just off post. She was leaving him (because he was abusive) and was meeting her boyfriend there to run away together. The Soldier walks into the crowded bar and blows himself up, killing his wife, her boyfriend and Claudia-Joys' daughter, Amanda. In reality this wouldn't have happened the way it did on the show. Michael (the post commander) was informed that the explosives were missing well in advance to the bar being blown up. In reality when the explosives were discovered missing every Soldier in that affected unit would have been recalled pending an inspection and a Health and Welfare (personal inspection). They would have brought in a special K9 unit to aide in the search as well and more than likely would have found them in time.

I'm sure that will be more examples with the season starting again on June 7th (YAY) but if there are any questions you may have about the show VS reality, just let me know! I would be HAPPY to answer them!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Day 5 - Celebrities

So today on twitter I had a little fun with a celebrity. You may know him as @carsonjdaly. If you were not around to see it, let me tell you, I had SO much fun! Here is the story.

Yesterday Carson Daly put out there that he got someone's pic of their hubby/boyfrind/whatever from overseas. I decided that I would send him one of my hubby as well. So I got an @ today from him telling me that he thought it was a good pic and he thanked me. For whatever reason still unknown to me I decided that it would be funny to act like one of those overly obsessed, needs a hobby other than stalking fans! I tweeted something along the lines of "*SQUEELS LIKE A TEENAGER* OMG @carsonjdaly wrote to me BREATHE BREATHE" or something to that affect. Well, surprisingly, and not at all planned on, I started getting responses like crazy! Stuff like "Take deep breathes" and "He is just like us LOL" So as I was responding to those tweets, in the same fun fashion I was doing with Carson Daly, he tweeted to me telling me that he laughed when he saw the description. I, being the person that I am, had even MORE fun with it saying "*SQUEEL AGAIN* He tweeted me AGAIN *HYPERVENTALATING* I need to sit down" and stuff like that.

Now I am fairly certain by this point he thinks I am ABSOLUTELY insane! I think others were thinking that as well, but for thise who know me, they can tell you that that is NOT like me at all! I do firmly believe that celebrities are just like normal people but I do want to thank Carson Daly for putting up with me and taking the risk of writing me back the second time! You truly are a great and caring guy and I only hope that I get to meet you in the future!

So, now that that is said, let me talk about celebrities and our obessesions with them. I just don't get it, and maybe someone can explain, but why do people get so up in arms when they meet/see/tweet with a celebrity? Is it because they are more well known? Is it because you respect what they do, or is it because they are out of their mind obsessed? I remember watching news clips about people fainting and crying during concerts and such or seeing a celebrity on the street and mowing them down trying to hug them. Seriously? Why do we get so facinated with people who are in the "spotlight" Do they have some kind of superpower that makes people lose their minds when "commoners" see them?

I think that it is ridiculous how some of them are treated. Some can't ever pee in private, some are hounded by photographers and other insist on being treated like a king/queen. Well I have news for you, they are no more special than you or I. Acting/singing/dancing/hosting or whatever it is that they do as their profession is just a job. I have a job and I don't see anyone asking me for my autograph! So most of them are good at what they do and there aren't a lot of people who can't memorize lines, sing in tune or dance like there is no tomorrow, but there are also some people out there that can't do brain surgery, defend a client in court and win or run a PATRIOT missle system but I don't see anyone asking them for autographs! The truth is is that I think people are drwan to the money and what that money can bring. Expensive cars, houses, boats and huge houses amoung other things. Things that "normal" people only DREAM about and being able to touch, hug, kiss, see those who can makes people feel closer to obtaining that dream.

Now, let's reverse it. There are a lot of celebrities out there that have gone insane over being in the public eye. Whether it's shaving your head (love you Brit) or smashing cameras or "running over" cameramen, they go nuts! My question for them is why? You knew what you were getting into when you decided to audition. You were hoping that you would become rich and famous and now that you are you can't handle it? It wasn't like you didn't know that the possibility was there, in fact I would bet that it was something that you were HOPING! It reminds me of a song where they sing about the "problems" that celebrities have and then say that they wish that they had those "problems". Another good song is "Celebrity" By Brad Paisley. If I ever met a celebrity or *crossing fingers* become one myself, I wouldn't treat them any different then anyone else. People think that celebrities are interesting. Well, I think there are plenty of interesting people out there that AREN'T celebrities like Military wives (you knew that was coming), single mothers/fathers, police officers, fire fighters, paramedics, assistants, doctors, nurses and the list goes on and on! So next time you meet/see/tweet with a celebrit, just remember, they have no special superpower, they are just good at their job. Treat them like any other average person cause that is what they are (minus the fame, fortune, personal trainer, chef, butler, maid and nanny).

Monday, May 18, 2009

Day 4 - A little bit about me and my Army wife life

I joined the Army when I was 19. I remember going into the recruiter's office and asking them what I needed to do to sign up. Back then they didn't just take anyone, you had backround checks and such. I went and took the ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) and afterwards went to go look at my options as far as a MOS (Military Occupational Speciality) went. They first tried to get me into Black Hawk Maintainence. Although I am a bit of a tomboy nothing like that interested me. Then they told me about the PATRIOT system. They showed me a video on the PATRIOT and I remember thinking that that was cool! They then preceeded to tell me that PATRIOT was the ONLY combat arms MOS that a female can get into. I was hooked! I went to Fort Leonard Wood (Fort Lost in the Woods), MO for Basic Training and I had a BLAST! NOTHING like you see in the movies! Unfortunetly I fractured my leg running and I couldn't graduate with my group. I did return after EXODUS (Christmas break). It took me 2 months to recover enough to run my PT (Physical Training) test and pass so I could go to AIT (Advanced Individual Training). So off I went to Fort Bliss (Hell Paso), TX. I was there for 8 months learning how the PATRIOT missle system worked and how to engage enemy targets. While I was there I met a fellow Soldier in the same MOS as me. We hit it off right away and I haven't been able to get rid of him since (LOL)! We "dated" from March of 2001 and were engaged by July 2001. Now I know some of you are thinking "Man, that's WAY too fast!" and you are right! In that kind of enviroment (where there are still Drill Sergeants and LOTS of rules) it's more lust than love. That is why you aren't supposed to "date" while you are training. I have seen people "fall in love" and 2 weeks later they get married. Then 6 months later they get it annuled! In August of 2001 Nick (the future hubby) graduated from Fort Bliss and got orders to go to South Korea. I was crushed! We did what we could to get his orders changed but nothing panned out. 2 months later, when it cam time for me to graduate, I found out that one of my classmates got orders to go to South Korea. I decided that this was a win-win situation becuase his wife had just given birth to their 2nd child so I changed orders with him. I went to South Korea and he stayed at Fort Bliss. As lick would have it Nick and I got stationed together at Kunsan Air Force Base. While we were there our chain of command threatned to seperate us, send one of us 3 hours north. We decided that we would get married and then have our wedding when we got back to the states. The American Embassy (which was 3 hours north of us) only married people on mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays so we decided that we would take a bus up, get married on Friday, stay there the weekend for our "honeymoon" and head back on Monday. Well, things didn't exactly work out. He was denied his pass for Friday so we ended going up on Saturday, staying the weekend and got married on Monday, March 25, 2002 which in and of itself was an experience! We got up at 9:00am and went to the JAG (Judge Advocate Office) to get all of our paperwork signed off on. The it was off to the Korean Census office. Just like here in the States you need to register to get married. Then we went to the American Embassy. When we walked in we pulled a number off of the wall like we were in line at a deli. After 10 minutes our number was called and we went up to the window. We told her that we were there to get married and handed her our paperwork. She then told us to have a seat and she would get back to us. We sat there for about 20 minutes. In my head I was thinking that the reason it was taking so long was because they were going to get a Justice or Judge or something. We finally got called up to the window. She handed us back our ID's and stamped a few papers and handed them to us and said "Congratulations". HUH?! That was it? I was a little confused and upset! Before we left we took out our wedding bands (because that was all that we could afford), said something that was like vows and put them on each other. We were in jeans and sweaters. I kept reminding myself that everything was going to be ok because we were going to have our wedding when we got back to the States. We went back down that day and went back to work the next day. I thought things would have been easier for us since we were now married. I was wrong. Both of our chains of commands knew that we were married but refused to cut us any slack. We still had to stay in our rooms with our roommates. We asked if we could move into a room together but we were told that we should think about all of the married people that were there that don't get to see their spouse and how it wouldn't be fair to them! To make a long story short we didn't get to live together as man and wife until we came back to the States 8 months later. Again, we were lucky enough to both be stationed back at Fort Bliss (Hell Paso), TX. I had only signed up for 4 years and right before those 4 years ended I ended up with really bad lower back aches. I was diagnosed with degenerative disc disease and bulging discs in the lumbar region. No re-enlisting for me. When I went to get out I was told that I didn't read the fine print on the contract. Even though I had signed up for 4 years, I was obligated to the Army for 8. I decided to go into the Active Reserves (1 weekend a month, 2 weeks a year). I knew that Nick was going to be a lifer so I decided it would be better for me to change my MOS. I asked what my options were and I settled on Dental Specialist (Dental Assistant). Now, I've never had a problem with dentists or anything like that, but I thought it would be cool to know what they were talking about when I go in! So I went to Fort Sam Houston (San Antonio) for a month. Now normally Soldiers stay in the barracks but I guess something was wrong with them hen we went so we had to "suffer" for a month at the Embassy Suites. The course challenging but interesting. I actually graduated with Distinguished Honor Grad. It was back to Fort Bliss and a string of jobs for me until Nick decided that he was going to change his MOS to MI (Military Intellegence). December 2005 Nick left for Fort Huachuca, AZ for 6 months to go through the Human Intellengence Collector course. I wasn't able to go with him because the course was too short. I stayed in El Paso and started to look for a DoD (Department of Defense) job in California because I knew that after Nick graduated from Ft. Huachuca, AZ he was required to go to DLI (Defense Language Institute) in Monterey, CA. After a LONG process I finally got a job out there. Now came the fun part.........my first move! Before when i was active it was different because I didn't have anything to move! Now I had a house full of stuff AND Nick wasn't there. I ended up going to all sorts of briefings to get the Army to move and I had NO CLUE what was going on. The best part of the Army moving us is that I really didn't have to do anything! They hire the movers and the movers come in and do EVERYTHING! They take the dishes out of the cabinets, pictures off the wall and eve the clothes out of the dressers. My main job was to log stuff like movies and CD's and then make sure that they didn't break anything. In January 2006 I made the trek from TX to CA with a trunk full of necessities, 2 dogs and a snake in an aquarium. Fun times, let me tell you! I was responsible for getting a house on post, get settled and start my job all by myself. In May 2006 nick graduated from Ft. Huachuca, AZ and joined me in Monterey, CA. We were there for a 1 and 1/2 years while Nick went through Arabic. In October 2007 we left Monterey, CA for our VERY first REAL duty staton, Fort Drum, NY. That's right, we drove from Monterey, CA to Fort Drum, NY. To top it off, Nick thought that it would be a good idea to move it all ourselves! No movers to come and pack things for me! now, when you decide to do a DITY (Do IT Youself) move you do make more money, for gas and food and such, but I'm telling you from personal experience, IT IS NOT WORTH IT! Never again will we do that! Before we left CA we thought it would be a good idea to get a travel trailer because that way we don't have to worry about getting hotel rooms or holding it til the next rest stop. We could just pull over whenever we wanted! Plus, we also heard that the housing situation at Fort Drum was pretty bad. There was a LONG wait list and the crappy thing is that you can't put your name on the wait list until you get there! In Novemeber 2007 we arrived to Fort Drum, NY. Now when I think NY, I naturally think NYC. That's not the case up here! Fort Drum, NY sits about 45 miles south of the Canadian border. There are a lot of farms and Amish out here and, like I was told shortly after I got here, they only have 2 seasons, Winter and the 4th of July. We had problems right off the bat getting housing. We were #187 on the waiting list so we had to stay in a hotel. We stayed at the Fort Drum Inn for a little over 3 weeks. Now, before I left Monterey, CA, I was told that in order to transfer to another DoD job all I had to do was to sign up for the Spouse Preference Program and I should have a job within 2-3 weeks. LIES! I was without a job for about 2 months and finally took a job at Target just to help bring money in. I wouldn't get another DoD job until February. In the meantime we couldn't keep staying in a hotel. We had 2 dogs, a snake and we had also aquired a guinea pig. We decided to rent a house. Unfortunetly the locals here knew of the housing situation and started to price gouge the Soldiers. Were talking $1200 for a 2 bedroom 1 bathroom duplex type gouging! We decided that it would be cheaper to buy, so that's what we did, but just like our move to CA, I had to do it by myself. Nick had orders to go back to Ft. Huachuca, AZ for BNCOC (Basic Non-Comissioner Officer Course) for 3 months. So he basically got here (in November), dropped me off and left (in January). I had to go house hunting on my own. Now, I have never had to do ANYTHING close to trying to buy a house but it needed to be done, so I put on my big girl panties and got 'er done. In February 2008, I bought our house while he was in AZ and he didn't see it until he came back a month later. Ahhhh, being an Army wife! Anyways, so this whole time I am still in the Reserves and my 2 weeks a year was coming up that June. I decided that I was going to re-enlist because everytime I went for the weekend drills I REALLY missed being in. I even went to go see about getting back in but because I was disabled with the VA, I would have to pay back all of the disability money I had gotten so I said no. Around the time that we left for NY, Nick and I had decided that it was time to start our family. In May of 2008 I found out that I was pregnant, and ONCE AGAIN, Nick wasn't here. This time he was at Ft. Polk, LA going through training for his upcoming deployment to Afghanistan. Once I became pregnant all thoughts about me re-enlisting went out the window. I know too many families where both mom and dad are deployed so they are raised by someone for a year, maybe longer, and it was important to us that at least one parent stayed here. In October 2008, I ETS (Expiration of Term of Service) from the Army. Nick was scheduled to deploy in December 2008 but his chain of command was kind enough to try and put him on the last flight out, which was scheduled for mid-January so he could be here for the birth. When I was 33 weeks pregnant, I slipped and fell and was admitted to the hospital. I was lucky to have fallen because it was discovered that our baby had VERY low fluid levels and if I had not fallen we wouldn't have known. I was admitted 3 different times for various reasons and the decision was made to take the baby early but the doctor wanted to wait until at least 35 weeks unless the baby showed signs of distress. I was able to make it to 35 weeks and Shannon Nicole was born on December 18th at 10:42pm weighing 6 lbs. 15 ozs and 20 inches long. Nick and I had been prepared for the worst due to the fact that she was 5 weeks early. The doctor said that she may have to stay in the NICU (NeoNatal Intensive Care Unit) for a few days up to a few weeks depending on her lung development. It turns out that other than her blood sugar being a little low, she was in perfect health! We stayed in the hospital for 3 days and then were released. Nick was able to stay for a month and on January 18th, one month to the day after our first child was born, Nick left for Afghanistan. It has been 4 months today since he left. Everyday gets easier and harder at the same time. I try and keep myself busy to pass the time. I volunteer with the FRG (Family Readiness Group) doing the monthly newsletter for the Soldiers and families and I am the Co-Treasurer and I pitch in where ever I can, organizing outings for us wives to go on so we don't get cabin fever or helping out with the care package parties. I also volunteer for the AFTB (Army Family Team Building) as an instructor and I do their quarterly newsletter as well. I am now also involved in a new magazine launching in the Fall called Army Wife Magazine. I will be a corresponant for the Ft. Drum happenings as well as doing an advice column called "Letters to Limerck" as well as helping out with a project where Army wives write letters of encouragement and advice to other Army wives about all things dealing with the Army wife life. I also will be enrolling into Park University to complete my Bachelor's degree in Psychology on top of raising my daughter. I know this time will pass but it always seems like forever when I'm going through it and after it's over and done with it seems like it went by fast. I know this was very long and I apologize for it but living the Army wife life isn't easy. I know a lot of people say that they don't feel sorry for us Army wives because this is the life we chose, but we don't choose who we love and, me personally, I feel that it's one thing to support the troops and quite another to love them!

P.S. And I just wanted to add this, Nick and I never had a wedding. I had made all sorts of plans and even bought a veil when we came back to the states, but then when I would ask him about it he told me that we were already married so why have the wedding?! I tried to fight it but we really didn't have money for a wedding. He kept telling me that we would renew our vows at 5 years. Well 5 years came and went. Now he says 10. Do I hear 15, 15 years anyone? Plus, how do you renew vows if you never said them in the first place? Does that mean that we aren't really married?

Monday, May 11, 2009

Day 3 - U.S. vs The Rest of the World

Ok, so I don't get this. We have homeless everywhere (especially in today's economy), kids killing kids, mothers throwing away their babies, Soldiers dying over in a foreign country and the list goes on and on and what do people with the means and influence decide to do with their power and money? Buy nets for kids in a DIFFERENT country. Help a DIFFERENT country get clean water. Seriously? If ya'll follow me on Twitter (@JenTheArmyWife) you know that I care deeply for the military and their supporters! I can't believe with everything that is going on right here in your own backyards, people care more about some country that I'm sure half of America hasn't even heard of, then the men and women who fight for your freedom everyday! Not to mention the men, women and children they leave behind so your ass doesn't have to go over and sacrifice your comfortable living! I wish I could meet some of these "celebrities". I think the real celebrities are the ones fighting over there and the ones that they left behind! I think it should be manditory that everyone should have to serve at LEAST 2 years in the branch of their choice. Maybe then people would be more willing to support our troops and those that are left to dry the tears of the 150,00 plus kids who have a parent "over there" fighting. Sometimes that parent, and on occasion, PARENTS come home in a box. That child is an orphan so you can care more about kids without nets?! You know that there are troops over there right now getting absolutely NOTHING! No mail, packages or even emails? I get that the military is a volunteer thing, but if they don't volunteer who will? You?!? Doubtful! So keep sending nets over to kids in some far away land while myself and hundreds of others send something to our troops. I promise, all of my blogs are this aggressive, but as you can tell from my name, this subject is VERY near and dear to my heart!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Day 2 - Gay Marriage

Hello out there! I hope today is going well for you.
Today's blog is going to be about gay marriage. I know, I know! This one is going to be interesting and there are going to be ALOT of people that are going to comment on this, if they even see it.

I don't know why everyone gets all up in arms about this. The beautiful thing about this country is that you have the freedom here to believe in WHATEVER you want! My husband (and I, for a short while) fights to protect that freedom everyday!

So here it is.

There are some people that feel that a marriage should be between a man and woman. They believe this because the Bible says so, or at least that is what I am lead to believe. They feel that it is a sin for 2 people of the same sex to love each other.

There are some people that feel that you should be able to marry whomever you choose, man or woman. Love is love and who cares if it happens to be with someone of the same sex.

Now to all of those who believe that you will burn in hell if you love someone of the same sex, are they hurting you? Seriously, what is the big deal? If you walking down the street and saw Eleen and Porche would you get injured? A bruise? Maybe a black eye? Perhaps you would stop breathing? Who are you to tell ANYONE who they can or can not love, sleep with or marry? Now, let's pretend that you are Catholic but the majority of the population is Jewish. How would you feel if everyone is telling you that you have to be Jewish. It doesn't matter if you don't want to be, it doesn't matter if you know inside that you are Catholic. Everyone believes that if you aren't Jewish you are going to go to hell and it's in your best interest for you to be Jewish because they are trying to save your soul. You are forced to live with Jewish laws everyday knowing deep down that you are Catholic. I bet you wouldn't like others telling you how you should live, so why do it to others? Do unto others right? I don't remember 'Do unto others as you would have done unto you, unless you don't like their beliefs' I may have missed that part.

I understand that everyone has their opinions, and I will never tell you that your opinion is wrong and I will not push mine onto you. But let's think for a minute. Remember, not so long ago, it was considered a crime against nature for a black person and a white person to love each other, let alone get married? And their children? Forget it! They were shunned once it became common knowledge that one of their parents was of a different race! Now-a-days, you don't look twice at a couple of different ethnic backrounds (well, at the decent human beings). I swear that in 10 years, it will be the same thing with gay marriage. No one will think twice to see a married gay couple with kids. It is going to happen and I'm glad to see that some of these states are starting to realize it.

I say, you can love whomever you want, be it a man or a woman. You aren't hurting me at all and it's not like it's a disease that you can catch. I remember a comedian once saying something along the lines of 'Why shouldn't gay people get married? They should have the chance to be as miserable as the rest of us!"

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Day 1 - Porche Girl

Ok, so your gonna have to forgive me. I'm REALLY new to this blogging thing. I know that I have a lot of opinions and remarks on all sorts of things and I can't always voice them, so I decided that this is a great way to get things off my chest! My first blog is going to be about an article I read recently about the parents of a girl that stole her dad's car, tried to overtake a car on the highway and ended up getting damn near decapitated. She died as a result and her pictures were posted ALL over the internet. This all happened on Halloween in 2006 and I remember getting the pictures emailed to me. They were quite graphic but that kind of stuff doesn't phase me much. Anywho, so the parents are trying to stop the circulation of these pictures. I had long forgotten about this so I went on google (gotta love google) and looked it up. I came across the pictures and remembered instantly! They were actually posted on someone's blog! So I started reading the comments. Some were WAY out there (someone wrote that they now have to put a bag over her face when they f@#k her) while others brought religion into it (someone said that God is going to punish those who are making lewd comments) and there were some that were on the fence. After reading most of the comments I had to agree........with all of them! I can see everyone's view point and that is why I love this country! Everyone is entitled to an opinion. I agree that, although this was a tragic accident, some good can come out of this. Her story can be made into an example on how NOT to be. She apparently had done cocaine the night before and her parents were going to take her to get some help. instead she decided that she was going to steal daddy's porsche and go as far away as possible and do 100mph getting there! This is plain stupidity. I hate to say that she deserved it but she was going 100 mph and was being completely reckless! I remember in school when we would see those posters for the fight against drunk driving and the way the suvivors looked after a bad car crash. I also agree that we shouldn't be posting her picture everywhere. The dad actually got a similar email that I did and had to see his daughter all smashed up. It had to be hard enough to lose a child but then to see her death splashed all over the internet?! People scream "freedom of speech, freedom of press" but what happened human decency? It's amazing what kinds of things people are into these days. Remember Faces of Death? I have never seen it myself but I hear stories! I heard that they also sued the California Police Department for $20M! WTF? First of all, her parent s were rich to begin with. They lived in the muli-million dollar homes and they all had personal trainers and chefs and crap and they are going to SUE the Police Department (tax payers) for leaking the photos? Why? Talk about profitting from their daughter's death! You can sue for pretty much anything these days! If I got carpal tunnel can I sue my boss for making me type too much? If my daughter gets bit at daycare can I sue the parents because their child assulted my child and for the pain and suffering that she had to endure and then the daycare for not keeping a closer eye on her? I remember the lady who sued McDonald's because she spilled her coffee on herself and got burned (who hasn't done that) and she sued them because it did not state on the cup that the contents were hot! WHAT?! You ordered coffee! Of course it was going to hot! But you know what, she won! I think that very well may have been the start of the stupid suing! What is next? **DISCLAIMER** You may have to strain your eyes to read this, bend over close to the screen or some other form of body contortion. I AM NOT RESPONSIBLE if something adverse happens to you while reading this or any of my blogs!