Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The Spirit of Giving

To those of you who would normally be receiving something from us this Christmas – whether it be a card, a plate of home-baked goodies, a gift in the mail, or a trip to see you, we are sorry. This year we chose to do something a little different with our Christmas money, as I alluded to previously.

Neurotic as I am, I constantly worry about what-ifs and this year there seem to be quite a few people sharing my concerns. We have friends and family members with depleted retirement funds wondering what will happen if the market doesn’t come back. We have coworkers and acquaintances wondering what will happen if their company can no longer afford to pay wages. We know people with children on the way that are wondering what they will do when the bills come in the mail next month.

Suffering is everywhere, all the time. This year it took the form of a recession to let us know that none of us are immune to the ebbs and flows of the economic environment. In years past we have chosen angels off of Christmas trees, and contributed to company fundraisers. We have served food to the homeless, and tutored underprivileged youths. But this year it seemed important to Corey and I to help someone a little closer to home.

I will acknowledge that our adopt-a-family project didn’t go exactly as we had planned. After a deep breath we decided that there was a reason we were compelled to go down this path and we were going to do everything in our earthly power to make sure that someone else’s Christmas was a little merrier because we were involved.

So, we are happy to tell you that in lieu of the things I mentioned above, there is a family in our community that has warm coats for their children, Christmas presents under the tree, and some necessities that will hopefully take a bit of spending burden off of their shoulders in times to come.

Unfortunately we were not in the position to grant miracles, and I wish that there was more that we could do, and for more people. However, we really feel like each gift is wrapped with the thought behind it and we hope that when we deliver our packages tonight, on Christmas Eve, the family feels the joy and love that we have to spare in our family.

On Christmas morning when we are opening our gifts we will also make sure to spend a few moments thinking about the family, and about the two children in the Philippines that will be opening (technically they will have already opened due to the time difference) our Operation Christmas Child boxes and ask that they are blessed in the many ways our family is, none of which have to do with wealth or tactile prosperity.

I want to thank all of you for graciously accepting (whether consciously or unknowingly) the sacrifices we have made on your behalf to make these things happen for other people. I also want to note that while it is a little more stressful, shopping for Christmas presents on a budget creates a unique opportunity that I daresay I enjoyed. Chagrined, I think I spent about 20% of what I spent on Corey last year, and I am happy to note that there will be no discernible lack of presents or the Spirit of Christmas in our living room tomorrow morning.

We hope that all of you have a beautiful day tomorrow and that the spirit of the season extends long after the sun has set on Christmas 2008.

With Love,
Corey and Christina

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Gift of Christmas

It’s been hard to get into the Christmas season this year. Wedding plans have taken over all free space in my brain, and the boy has been working a longer schedule with classes on top of that so he’s not exactly running around the house in a Santa costume (although that would be cute, yet slightly strange and creepy). By this time last year we had a beautiful sparkling Christmas tree in the living room, most of our presents purchased and wrapped away in the guest rooms, and I was baking cookies like the food network iron chef judges were about to peek in my Christmas tins.

So far this year I’ve hung a wreath on the front door. And you know what? I was damn proud of that wreath last Saturday when I finally managed to perch it over our 12 foot tall front door.

Since my family is actually celebrating Christmas in Pinetop the weekend before the traditional holiday, Corey and I will be home on Christmas Day. Thinking this would be a great opportunity to give back to some less fortunate people in our community we began calling soup kitchens and homeless shelters and offering our volunteer services. Unfortunately, the karma train has a lot of people worried right now so everywhere we called was full of volunteers. Dejected, I thought about spending a quiet Christmas at home alone with Corey.

That sounds awful, but I’m not sure how to word it differently. What I mean is we were so excited about giving back this holiday season. Back in my single days when I had more time I volunteered quite a bit more than I do now and I miss it. I also felt like this was really our chance to show people that there are still some of us out there who care about how our neighbors and fellow men are doing - especially now when layoffs can happen to anyone, even those that have been very fortunate in recent years. Not willing to take ‘no help needed’ as an answer, Corey and I brainstormed a bit and decided to enlist the help of a man Corey works with and who does quite a bit of volunteer work on his own. Fifteen minutes in his office was productive enough to get in touch with a school guidance counselor and ask him to find us a family that could use a little help making their Christmas bright this year. Wish granted. This week we are going to be matched up with a family and we have the opportunity to make their lives a little better, even if just for a little while.

I can’t express to you how excited we are to be ‘adopting’ a family for Christmas. I find myself walking through stores wondering how many kids our family will have and what kind of presents they will like. Is there a little girl that needs these adorable pink winter gloves? Maybe a boy who is tired of wearing a hand me down jacket and dreams of a new one (probably a Dallas Cowboys jacket if I imagine hard enough)? I’m sure there will be a mom who will be able to use the bags of groceries to make a feast for Christmas dinner.

Our resources aren’t unlimited, but we’ve budgeted the amount we’re allowed to spend on each other (which usually gets ridiculous and needed to be reigned in anyway) and with a few savings techniques that we’ve picked up over the last few months, I hope we’ll be able to provide a family with a day to be thankful for. And in doing that, this family will have provided us with the opportunity to do a good thing and to remind ourselves that how rich we are has nothing to do with money in the bank or items under the tree. On Christmas Day I will be safe and warm wrapped up with the one I love on our couch watching “A Christmas Story” over and over. How can I even begin to ask for more than that?

If you have been like me this year and have found it a little hard to get into the swing of things, I urge you to volunteer your time or resources somewhere to someone in need. Something as small as a can of food in a donation bin can bring food to a family that wouldn’t have it otherwise. Please try to remember that when we are all sitting around Christmas trees with our families opening presents of abundance, there are those that are cold and hungry. And selfishly, making a difference in someone else’s life is the best feeling ever.

Friday, December 5, 2008

The curse of the SunDrop

It’s almost too unbearable to write about, but I feel I must share this with the world to perhaps spare some other poor soul from the torment: The body is physically unable to process SunDrop without a gall bladder.

Sad, but an undeniable fact.

To those of you that are unaware of the existence of said soft drink, apparently you’re missing out. I first learned of this liquid gold from an old friend from Wisconsin. He spoke of SunDrop like a Costa Rican speaks of coffee, or the Swiss speak of chocolate. While acknowledging the existence of other highly caffeinated and sugar injected lemon-lime thirst quenchers, our Mountain Dew and Mello Yello simply have nothin’ on this stuff (so the addicts say). I’ve heard it mixes well with Jack Daniels, allows you to stay up studying for three days without sleep, and cures cancer (although no claims have been proven). So, as a birthday present, I had a case of the stuff shipped out from Wisconsin. And because I made such a gesture I was allowed to taste the product of my intense google searches. To me it tastes like a sweeter (if you can believe it) and less carbonated Mountain Dew. Unfortunately for me, I said so. Immediately I was shunned by the group of Wisconsin-ites and I learned to never again speak of my true feelings towards the elixir.

Cut to a year later when I met Mr. Confederate. Early on in our relationship (so early he hadn’t yet seen me without makeup or with my hair in a ponytail) he mentioned something about missing home and especially missing a drink he could get in Tennessee. So for the second time in as many years I was subjected to a monologue on the virtues of the drink of the gods – also known as SunDrop. This time however, my heart began to race. I’d already wooed Corey with my lasagna, banana bread, and inside-out German chocolate cake, but this would seal the deal for sure. I raced home to place my order and 72 hours (and $80 in shipping costs later) I approached his door with what felt like 100 pounds of aluminum cans under my arms.

To this day I’m convinced that is the exact moment he fell in love with me.

It has been a while since I’ve ordered the stuff – partly because it has approximately 800 calories per can and partly because I’m pretty sure I have the guy wrapped up (at least I’m honest), but I knew that when we traveled back to Tennessee for Thanksgiving he was sure to fall off the wagon once again. Sure enough, the first stop when we entered his parent’s house was the refrigerator. I had personally been worried about his digestion and this trip for months, mostly because they deep fry their butter in Tennessee before serving it. Little did I know the real culprit would come from a glass.

I’ll save you all the gory details but apparently the absence of a gall bladder does not affect the ability to digest deep fried chicken parts, pizza, nachos, cheeseburgers, macaroni and cheese, corn pie, fried turkey, French fries, country ham, or fried pie. SunDrop is however, completely indigestible. Order was not restored to the world until we reached a cruising altitude of 42,000 feet somewhere over Arkansas.

Let this be a warning to those of you who may be considering consuming the liquid crack. Back away from the can and instead have a glass of what the health freaks drink in Tennessee – sweet tea.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Operation Christmas Child

With everything else going on, the holidays have really snuck up on us this year. I actually saw something this morning that taunted me with “31 days until Christmas” and I laughed like crazy until I consulted my calendar and realized that it was telling me the truth. A month? That’s all I have?

Because we’re so far behind we almost missed out on something we’ve been excited to do for months: participate in Operation Christmas Child. I’m not sure how I first became aware of the program, but after reading the website and watching the videos I was in tears and knew it was something we had to do. To sum it all up, people all over the world in countries like the US, Canada, UK (traditionally more privileged nations) donate and collect shoe boxes full of Christmas presents for children who otherwise would probably not receive anything for the holidays. We won’t know if our Christmas boxes are headed for El Salvador or South Africa, but in a month there will be a child somewhere who will sit with our Christmas shoebox in his lap and wait with his friends until the volunteer signals them to rip open their packages. Inside he will find Matchbox trucks, bouncy balls, crayons and coloring books, a stuffed frog, and other various toys along with toothbrushes, toothpaste and soap. In many cases, this will be the first time the child has ever owned a toothbrush. As I sit here and check my 401k with concern it’s hard to wrap my brain around the fact that there are children without access to clean water, medicine, and even more heartbreaking, without love. They may be orphans living in a state hospital, or working in a sweat shop to help provide food for their 14 member families. I have no idea what hardship is compared to these poor kids. But it’s nice to feel that for a few minutes on Christmas they will know that someone cares enough to send them a present.

We had a blast shopping for our shoeboxes. With my baby fever running rampant anyway I was able to go crazy in the toy aisles and purchase as many girlie trinkets as I could fit into my old (but newly wrapped) Bini shoebox. I picture in my mind a little 5 year old girl prancing around on Christmas, her shoulders draped with a pink and purple boa, tiara gleaming in the sunlight as she adjusts her lipgloss in her shiny makeup mirror. She might share her bracelets with her friends, but the cashmere soft teddy bear is all hers.

I know that our Christmas boxes are not going to change the heartbreak that these kids have in their lives every day. New lipgloss is not going to feed families, and toothpaste, while necessary, is not going to save any lives. But Christmas isn’t about saving lives for any of us. It’s about putting smiles on people’s faces, and letting them know that on that morning, along with so many other mornings, you’re thinking of them and praying that God takes care of them. It’s about celebrating the good and letting go of the bad, even if just for a morning. And if we can give one boy and one girl a morning without tears just ONE day this year, I feel like our Christmas will be more special than any other.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Of monograms and house guests

With wedding planning fully underway, we took a break this weekend as my parents were coming down to be our first official house guests. We deep cleaned the house, ironed linens, and set up the guest bath (which rarely gets much attention) with cute little soaps and towels. It was nice to actually have some noise in the house as we are usually asleep when we are home.

My dad's business charity is UCP and every 6 months when Nascar is in town we grill hamburgers and hot dogs at the race track. I myself am not a Nascar fan, but I am a fan of helping worthy causes, so nine times out of ten I am spending race weekend pulling apart hot dog buns and directing rednecks to the relish dispenser. Corey spent much of his days as the parking lot police (equipped with a safety orange vest and badge) chasing away offenders parking in front of gas pumps. It was a rebel girl's birthday dream.

As a combination birthday dinner/wedding reception scouting trip we headed to the restaurant and ordered three times too much food (all in the interest of 'tasting' of course), and made most of the decisions as to what will be on our wedding menu. My parents also gifted me with an arty nouveau spice rack that I've been coveting and some super fuzzy pink lounge pants that scream my name from a mile away. The boy is not as good at keeping gifts a secret so in the past few weeks I had already opened my gifts of the new Sleeping Beauty release as well as a gorgeous pair of Gucci sunglasses I had been lusting after. On my birthday he presented me with a spa certificate so I will be spending next Saturday getting massaged, pedicured, facialed, fed and made-up at Dolce. Sigh.

Wedding planning is just as stressful as I was afraid it would be. At least we're doing it extremely short notice so I only have five months of running around like a crazy woman instead of the year and a half that I fear I really need. So far all I've done is book the locations and get monogram samples from my graphic designer. Three checkmarks and 250 items left on the list!!!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Keeping up

It's been a busy week for sure, for everyone. Personally I was disappointed with the Presidential outcome, and that had little to do with Obama's victory. I was, am, and will always be a Republican. I myself share core values with Republicans. However, I also feel that I have no right to tell other people how to live their lives. I personally would never entertain the option of abortion, but who am I to push my beliefs on other people? I have been brought up to feel one way about gays and lesbians, but I feel I have absolutely no right to decide who can and who can't love each other. In this situation I respect and admire everything about John McCain. If he hasn't proven to the American public that he puts his country before himself then I don't know who has. So, my disappointment stems more from his loss than Obama's win. I have faith that Obama will bring thoughts and ideas to the White House that have never been heard before. But, he hasn't been tested before and that makes me a little nervous. I hope that he turns out to be the President that 53% of the country wants him to be.

On the personal front I've been dealing with a cold that just won't go away on top of my daily health problems which has made wedding planning stressful and daunting. However, the good news is that I have a dress, a ceremony site booked and a reception site booked. I thought those last two alone were going to be impossible, but when all else fails march down to the event coordinators office and demand they see you. It worked for me! :)

To my evident chagrin, this weekend is my twenty-somethingth birthday. If you'd asked me at 18 where I saw myself in years I would have definitely said married with kids. So, I'm a bit behind the curve, but at least headed in the right direction. Too bad birthday celebrations just don't mean as much in your 20s as it did when you were in the single digits.

Gone are the simple days of Cabbage Patch dolls and Rainbow Brite cakes. No more inviting every kid in the neighborhood over and having them sit in a circle around you while you unwrap every single present and parade it in front of their faces. And definitely no more eating 1800 calories worth of icing with little repercussions besides a distinct sugar high and a frosting moustache.

Oh to be a kid again.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Wedding woes

Almost everyone I know is married. What I don't know, however, is how they survived the wedding planning process.

Two weeks ago I sat gazing at my shiny bauble, blissfully unaware of what planning my wedding would mean. First we took the, "Oh, we'll get around to it next year" approach which was quickly changed when the boy reminded me that in order to get the new baby I've been bugging him about we'd have to get hitched first. Well, that was enough to push me into a whirlwind of planning only to realize that this stuff isn't easy. Or inexpensive.

The good part is that it will be small. And when I say small I mean SMALL. With family and friends scattered all over the world (a side effect of life in the military) we decided that planning a short notice wedding and inviting everyone would make for a lot of bad feelings and hurt pocketbooks for those to whom attendance would be a real challenge. So, it will be 20 of our closest friends and family members and that's it.

The bad part is that I was somehow switched at birth with Christina her majesty the Royal Princess of Norway and I have rather expensive tastes. Sure, we could get a whole pig and a keg ala CMT's redneck weddings and call it a day, but that's not exactly how I roll.

The reception was the easy part. Our favorite restaurant has been the scene of many of our most romantic dates, as well as the place where I first taught Corey to be a foodie. Their French inspired American-nouveau cooking is a must have.

Now for the hard parts: a ceremony in the, ahem, desert, that doesn't look like we're in the desert. Somewhere that doesn't care that you won't be buying their pricey catering package and just want to use them for their beautiful garden views before you jet off to greener culinary pastures. Does such a place exist? Maybe with a dusting of fairy dust and a happy thought or two.

And then there's my poor mother who is trying her best to scour the internet for inspiration but who (despite living in Phoenix, Los Angeles and Las Vegas) cannot seem to grasp that it will, in fact, take quite a while to drive from Cave Creek to downtown Phoenix and our guests will be likely to arrive at the reception with In N Out burger remnants on their tux lapels because they were starving at around the 20 mile mark.

Looking on the bright side, I do already have my dress which is something that generally causes a bride more disdain than anything else in planning her day. And I am the google queen so if something exists I will find it by way of the internet. My perfect ceremony locale must be out there somewhere!

I'm sure in a year I will look back and laugh at the drama one single day caused me, but I'm sure I won't regret the memories. So I trudge on with my trusty wedding planner portfolio and arms full of bridal magazines and hope and pray that it all works itself out in the end.

Friday, October 17, 2008

The ring

Corey and I got engaged over a year ago, at 3 in the morning. It wasn't flowery, or a big show - it was just a heartfelt moment that I will remember for the rest of my life.

However, Corey knows that now and then a girl needs a little tradition and a good story to tell. So, we spent a lot of time looking at rings and talking about what I liked, and researching jewelers in the area. Eventually, he found a place he liked and they helped him design a ring that would be perfect for me! I had fallen in love with the tulip setting months ago, but knew it wouldn't work with the wedding bands we were set on, so I resigned myself to having something I loved a little less when it came to my engagement ring. But, since Corey can never bring himself to let me be disappointed, he worked with the jeweler to figure out how to make it work.

And it felt like it would take MONTHS.

Well, yesterday it was done.

I came home to a rose petal trail leading to the bedroom, which was packed full of balloons and that sign on the wall. And to my left was Corey, down on one knee holding the most beautiful ring I've ever seen. Apparently it is virtually impossible to take a good picture of an engagement ring without special jewelry photography skills, but here's the best we could do:

So, although I've had a fiance for a while now the whole theatrics of it all were very appreciated - from asking my parents' permission to a personal engraving on the inside of my ring.

I would have married this man with a cigar band ring and an Elvis impersonating JOP, but I'm happy to have things this way too. And before you ask, the wedding is a ways away. We're thinking next fall - in Vegas! :)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


It's an inarguable fact that I am a huge chicken. I'm a scary moving hating, night-light needing, bug-eschewing scaredy-cat.

Corey thinks I'm just a worry wart, but I'm afraid that it goes much beyond that and borders on OCD. Right now I am worried about the scorpion that's caught in the air duct above the master bathroom. Sounds like a logical thing to be afraid of right? But, I'm also worried about the AIDS epidemic, and the economy, and raising intelligent chidren, and the health care industry. I worry about the funny noise my car made on the drive home last week, and I worry about my dad's torn shoulder, and my job.

I'm constantly striving to be a better person and to make a bigger impact on the world around me, but I struggle because I don't know where to start or what I can do. I would love to feed starving children, and adopt AIDS orphans, and balance the national budget. So, where does one start?

I've always seen myself as a future mother, but now I'm afraid of the world that I'm planning to bring children into. The economy, the energy crisis, the world food it even fair to bring children into the world with all of these catastrophies around us? Will I have the control to raise balanced, intelligent and kind children or will the world take that control out of my hands and pervert my children to its whims? When I was a child I don't remember dealing with poisoned Halloween candy, or Amber Alerts, or sex offender signs in the neighborhood. Can I protect my children the way I think they deserve to be protected? And will I pass my worries onto them?

I know I can't save the world alone, but I also know that the decisions I make have an effect on the people and world around me and I'm afraid of making the wrong ones. Am I alone in this? Sometimes I feel that everyone around me is careless and worry-free while I'm secretly petrified in silence.

Friday, October 10, 2008

8.1 Gs

Wednesday the boy got to go on the ride of a lifetime. As a reward for his NCO of the Quarter award he got to take an incentive ride on an F-16 with a top pilot from Luke. Half of me was absolutely petrified that he would crash and die, and 100% of me was insanely jealous because I'm supposed to be the one in the family doing the daredevil stuff.

But, he lived (and I am still jealous) and had a great time. He didn't even puke, or pass out, which are very common afflictions when cruising at 7+ Gs. They did a max climb take-off which you would have to see to believe, as it involves the jet taking off and climbing at 90 degrees - completely vertical! He even got to fly the jet himself and went sonic (broke the sound barrier).

Apparently they used to give spouses incentive flights but the expense and danger made them discontinue it. So, I told the pilot that I was going to run for public office and come back.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Bailout Bill

I've been interested in politics for as long as I can remember. From student council in school to a poli sci major (for part of college at least) I found it intriguing and compelling. It goes without saying that lately, it has been even more interesting than usual.

Today the House of Representatives passed the Bailout Bill which will allocate $700B of federal money to take bad loans out of the hands of individual banks. This will free up those banks to make credit available again, since it has been virtually frozen for the last few months.

Last week, when the House defeated the bill by a small margin, stocks tanked. People were concerned about their money, and concerned that if they left it where it was it would be worth even less when they came back for it later.

Now, today, the bill gets passed and what happens? Stocks fall. I was thoroughly confused. So, I logged on to my favorite websites to see what the analysts were saying. And what I read made me sick.

There are a whole lot of Americans that are too self-righteous and bitter and arrogant to see past their own situations. There are people everywhere complaining about the bill passing because they didn't cause this problem so why should they (in the form of tax money investments) have to pay it to bail out those that weren't as smart?

Well, let me tell you why. Because we are living in a democracy. Politicians were put in place to do what is right for the people. People being plural. Not for you, or me, or your neighbor Joe. Now granted, there are some very crooked politicians who are also only out for personal gain, however the fundamental ideas that this country was built upon are equality and strength in numbers and defending the rights of the people.

People who have homes that are being foreclosed on are not going to be sent a check from the government. They are not going to pay off my Visa bill because I charged some Louboutin boots last month. This bill is not going to buy groceries for people who took out loans they can't afford. What the bill is going to do is buy bad loans from your bank so that when you want a new car or a new house or a student loan - you can get it.

We may not have all contributed to the recession - Corey and I do not have a defaulting mortgage, but I have noticed about a dozen 'bank owned' for sale signs in my neighborhood. So, because I didn't contribute it's better to sit back and let the country fall into a depression?

We ALL lose in a depression. From fast food workers to CEOs. The unemployment line all leads to the same place no matter who you are. So, in protecting your bank's assets, you're also protecting your own. The problem is everyone who is secretly sitting at the dinner table and saying, "Well, they got what they deserved taking out more loan than they could afford."

Let me ask you this: What do you get out of your neighbor going bankrupt? Does it help you in some way? When we get to a place where we are wanting other people to fail then we need to evaluate what's going on inside our own minds and hearts and not what's going on in our neighbor's wallet.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Catching up

I've been MIA lately and although I'd like to give some great reason like, "My fiance swept me off to a surprise vacation in Bora Bora" it's more like we've been busy with life.

I made some of the 'best cupcakes in the world' as a late birthday celebration for the boy since he can't get enough of them. Every time I bake a batch I think he's going to take them all to work and get them out of the house, but he rationalizes that he needs to keep at least a dozen for himself. Thank goodness the gall bladder problem is over.

A few days after that the boy left this amazingly beautiful bouquet of Oriental lilies for me, and I knew when I looked at them that I want to do my wedding bouquet in lilies instead of tulips. I'm not a big fan of roses and knew that I didn't want a traditional bridal bouquet so this will be absolutely perfect.

Speaking of wedding stuff, the boy ordered my ring! We've been talking about it for ages and trying to decide what I want. I will admit that I'm a little particular so I might not have made it incredibly easy for him, but he had some meetings with the jewelers about designing what he wants and it's in the works. I don't know exactly what it looks like (and the suspense is killing me) but I know it will be beautiful!

The only other thing we've been spending time on lately is paying more attention to our budget. We finally sat down and looked at what we've spent money on this year and it made us sick. So, we decided the easiest way to save a little would be to cut waaaay back on our food budget. There are families of 20 spending less on food than we do in a month!

We started actually watching sales and doing things like using coupons and now it's pretty much a game to us. Did you know you never ever have to spend money on things like shampoo, toothpaste, razors, or body wash? Sounds crazy but it's true.

Here's what CVS paid me $3 to take yesterday.

Seriously, they paid me for razors! We usually buy razor cartridges at Costco for $50 and they last a couple months. We already have 8 razors that we got for free in the last week!

There were also coupons in this week's paper for a $25 gift card to CVS when you transfer a prescription there from another pharmacy. Well, Walgreens is closest to our house so I've always had my drugs filled there. But, for $25 I can drive the extra 1/10th of a mile to pay the same co-pay there. And because I'm so lucky and have a million prescriptions, it will be a very long time before I ever have to pay CVS cash for anything again!!

Monday, September 15, 2008

The scalpel and the stone

I know you'll all be disappointed, but there are no pictures of the infamous gall stone. The hospital had to send it off to pathology so we didn't get to take it home in my purse and therefore, we didn't win the gall stone size prize (whatever that may be).

The boy did survive, and after a very very long 45 minutes the surgeon said that everything went fine and he was already done. I had to wait another twenty to go back and see him because apparently he was flirting* and trying to talk his post-op nurse into getting him a beer. As far as I'm aware he didn't get a Bud Light or a phone number so I think he's forgiven, but it's still funny to watch people all hopped up on Demerol.

He's still very sore, but there's good news: The Air Force is much more lenient than the civilian world and he has another two weeks to recover. I foresee many long days of Legend of Zelda and Super Mario Bros 2 in his future (we just got an original Nintendo).

So, we spent the past four days lounging around, watching movies and planning shopping trips. I've become very adept at this CVSing thing and the boy has even joined in. Between the two of us we've got more Robitussin and Arnicare than we could use in a million years. But here is another very cool aspect of smart shopping: we found a great battered women's shelter in the area that's in need of many of the personal care items that we've been getting for free. So, we're starting a box and every time we get something for free or very cheap that we don't need we're tossing it in there. When we get a full box, we'll head down to the shelter.

I've been checking out a lot of blogs lately by women that do a lot of CVSing and couponing to get a ton of items free. One woman just had a yard sale to sell all of her shampoo/conditioner/toothpaste/razor stockpiles and made well over $1,000. I'm not trying to sound like a bitch here, but that made me sick. She got this stuff for FREE. No exaggeration - FREE. Yet, instead of helping many many people who don't have the luxury of toothbrushes or diapers when they flee abusive relationships in the middle of the night, she profited $1,000 from her free goods.

Another thing that I love so much about Corey is that he has such a giving heart. It would never occur to him to do something like sell the free toothpaste we got for profit. We're always thinking of who might need it, and who would think of a new tube of lipstick as a wonderful luxury. It means so much to me that the person I'm with is always inspiring me to be a better person and think of what else I can do to help people that aren't as fortunate.

I love him so much I might even take him my phone number and a Bud Light tonight.

*EDIT: The boy didn't like it so much that I said he was flirting. I will say that the nurses told me the first words out of his mouth when he woke up were to see me, and when I walked around the corner he got a goofy (high) smile on his face and yelled, "There's the love of my life." So, I guess he wasn't really in the doghouse for flirting.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


Well, the time has finally come for the boy to get hacked on for once. I'm stomping him in the race to have more medical procedures done, so tomorrow we'll go in and have his silly broken little gall bladder removed.

Truth be told, I'm petrified. The surgeon is wonderful, and I'm sure he's quite capable given his track record. But sitting there in the waiting room is going to be the longest hour of my life! I'm not sure what kind of ipod list you make for these kind of situations, but I'm thinking I need to upload some songs from happy Disney movies.

His doctor sent us home from the pre-op with a very cool website that answers almost any question you may have and walks you thru a procedure. I thought we were actually going to see a video of the surgery, so when we got done with it and hadn't seen blood and gore I figured it was a good idea to google it. Of course youtube obliged and I proceeded to watch an hour or so of gall bladder removals. Emotions ranged from nausea to unbridled fear to thoughts of making a run for Mexico and not going to the hospital. But, unfortunately, I know it's for the best since he hasn't been able to eat or sleep in weeks.

Since my dad and Corey are in a contest over who could grow the bigger gall stone I'm going to have to carry the thing out of the hospital in my purse! I'm not sure what the winner receives, but I know that I better get a new purse out of the deal.

If you could keep the boy in your thoughts we'd appreciate it! I'll make sure to post pictures of the stone when we get out.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Coupons and CVSing

I think this is a fairly common thing when it comes to blogs, but sometimes I'll click from someone's blog to someone else's and so-on and so-forth until I'm at a complete stranger's blog and have no idea how I got there.

This happened to me last week and I came upon a woman's blog who does something called 'CVSing'. We have a CVS near our house (a few actually) but I've always gotten my prescriptions from Walgreens so I had no reason to set foot in it. Well, it appears I've been missing out on a lot.

I should preface this all by saying that although Corey and I both make what we think are pretty good salaries, we always wonder where our money goes. $100 trips to Target, and $300 trips to the mall, and groceries always add up, and we don't end up saving as much as we'd like to.

I should also say that some people refer to me as a bit of a snob, and although I act offended when I hear it, deep down I know it's probably true. I would never think to use coupons or search for a deal because I never wanted the cashier or other people in the store to judge me. "Oh, look at that poor girl who can't afford her groceries," I hear them saying in my head. Sad, I know. But true.

But, this woman had piles and piles of purchases on her table and beneath it all she said that her total out-of-pocket cost was $0.85!!!! 85 cents for a table full of stuff! I was intrigued.

So, I did a little research and found that there are tons and tons of people who, with a little planning and research, save mounds of money at CVS. Yes, you have to use coupons, and yes you have to search for deals. But, it looked like it was worth it to me. So, I gave it a try.

Here's how I did:

5 tubes of Colgate Total toothpaste - $3.49 each
5 tubes of Arnicare pain relief gel(basically homeopathic Icy-Hot) - $9.49 each
4 Covergirl outlast lipsticks - $9.99 each
1 Covergirl lipgloss - $5.99
4 bottles of Dawn dishwashing detergent - $2.79 each
2 3-packs of paper towels - $1.99 each
2 nail glues - $1.99 each
2 bottles of water - $1.39 each
1 Accu-check blood sugar monitor - $75 BUCKS!!!
King size Reeses peanut butter cups (I had to buy it because my coupons went over, and the boy loves them anyway) - $1.00
1 Fiber One bar - $0.69
1 bottle of Dr. Pepper - $1.39

Total of $210.83

I got it all for $18.71. BUT, I also got $23 back in ExtraCare Bucks (basically CVS gift certificates for future visits). So essentially, they paid me $4 to buy all that stuff!!

I did have to use coupons, and it was very hard for me - but I survived and ended up saving a ton of money in the process. The best part of it is that Corey's mom's best friend has diabetes (no one we know here does) and she can't really afford the $75 monitor for herself. So, we're sending it to her. I'm so happy to be able to give it to someone who needs it - and we got it for free!!!

So, we're going to keep trying the CVSing and see what kind of deals we can get. We're also going to - gasp - cut out coupons for our groceries. Yes, the snob in me hates typing that. But, when we have more money in our savings account for vacations and other big purchases, I think it will be worth it.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Tortoise and the Hare

On paper, the boy and I don't work at all. Whenever we see those annoying eharmony commercials I laugh because I know a computer never would have matched us in a million years. He's a simple country boy, and I'm a high maintenance city girl. He likes the stability and organization of the Air Force, and I like the fast paced business world. And while he's content to take it easy and let things happen, I'm always rushing to see what's around the next corner and get there faster.

The past few months have been hard on me. Health-wise I find myself jealous of people who get up every day and aren't in pain. Some days it takes everything I have just to haul myself out of bed. I've become so focused on how bad I feel that I've forgotten to be thankful for what I do have. My last surgeon told me that everything is fine with my 'girl parts', so hopefully having children won't be a problem. When I was diagnosed with cancer 3 years ago I thought children would be out of the question. I also have doctors who are searching for what's wrong with me and ultimately trying to help me. And I have insurance that covers almost all of it. These are luxuries that not everyone has.

But still, I want to rush. I can't wait to get married, to have kids, and to feel settled already. Somehow, I think that there will be this magical finish line and once I cross it I can be content. I see my friends with their families and I get so impatient; so restless. People I graduated high school with have five kids, and we haven't even started yet. How did we get so far behind?

So my daily struggle now is to look at Corey and take his strength and just SLOW DOWN. To appreciate the scenery, and be thankful for every blessing I've been given. To try and surrender to the fact that life isn't a race because the finish line is in a different place for everyone. And to realize that even though I'm on the gas and he's on the brakes, at least we'll get where we're going together.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Calgon, take me...

I saw this on someone else's blog, and since I'm feeling uninspired, I stole it. Yep, I'm a thief. Deal.

I am: Christina
I think: We should move to Italy where they don't start working until noon.
I know: there is something wrong with me.
I want: a doctor to figure out what it is.
I have: a sweater and blanket on me. It's cold in my office.
I wish: Percocet didn't make me feel so crappy.
I hate: that I can't have morning coffee.
I miss: Feeling normal.
I fear: Never feeling normal again.
I feel: See above. I'm broken.
I hear: The coffee maker in our break room.
I smell: The coffee. oh sweet Columbian roast...
I crave: Sleep and/or caffeine!
I search: google every day for medical advice.
I wonder: why I didn't invent Google.
I regret: not investing in Google on opening day.
I love: the boy. He's cool.
I care: about sick little kids, and the AIDS epidemic, and abandoned puppies.
I always: wish I had a baby.
I am not: preggo.
I believe: that everything happens for a reason, no matter how sh#%@ty it seems.
I dance: when I have a good hair day.
I sing: to the boy when he's going to sleep. He laughs.
I dont always: say what I'm thinking.
I fight: with the boy sometimes when I'm grouchy.
I write: in my journal too infrequently.
I lose: At monopoly and it makes me furious!!
I win: At everything else.
I never: imagined I'd have a country accent.
I listen: to a very random mix of music.
I can usually be found: at my computer.
I am scared: of bugs.
I need: a competant doctor.
I am happy about: it not being Monday anymore.

OK, so you can probably tell I'm in a bit of a funk. The last few days my pain has been excruciating and I don't know what to do. The Percocet dulls the pain but leaves me loopy and sick, Darvocet doesn't do anything to the pain, and not taking anything leaves me miserable.

My most recent surgeon said that everything is normal gynecologically, so that's good news. However, it's also puzzling because something has to be causing the pain. I'm happy that the cancer didn't spread anywhere crazy though and show up again. That was also good news.

There is a possibility that my pain is completely related to my bladder disease, in which case I just have to live with it. So, I'm going back to my regular doctor next week to get referred to a pain management clinic, and to get referred to another urologist for a second opinion. She also wants to run a bunch of tests to make sure I don't have anything wrong with my intestines. Sounds like fun right?

Other than that, my last option is to explore nerve blocking where they inject pain medication straight into your spinal column to try and identify where the pain is originating. Sigh.

On happier news, the boy's birthday is this weekend so we're going up to Vegas to celebrate. Corey's best friend in the world and his wife live in Vegas so he's stoked about seeing them, and I'm looking forward to meeting them too. I've got baby fever in the worst way right now and his wife is 5 months preggo so I'm sure it's going to be like waving a ding dong in front of a fat woman. I know you're supposed to get hitched (and healthy) before you have babies, but they're just so freakin' cute. I need one!

We'll keep everyone updated if the boy wins a billion dollars at craps. Or, we'll move to Aruba and you'll never hear from us again.

Monday, August 11, 2008

The bad news, and the good news.

For those of you that were concerned, my surgery was a wash. They went in and found adhesions on my intestines, which is odd considering I'd never had pelvic surgery before. So, they cut them all out in hopes that it would stop my pain. Unfortunately, that must not have been the root of the pain as it came back in full force as soon as the post-surgery pain killers wore off. So, back to the medical drawing board.

The good news is that while I was busy recovering, the boy had his final awards ceremony and HE WON! So, he is now the NCO of the Quarter for Luke AFB. Pretty fancy award considering he was up against some great people. It came with some airline tickets and savings bonds, along with the massive bragging rights and ego boosts and I couldn't be prouder!

Next year he'll be competing for Luke AFB NCO of the Year 2008 against the three other quarterly winners. Very exciting!

Oh, and there was another scorpion in the house, but I'm not ready to talk about that yet. I'll let you know when the Valium kicks in.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Playing doctor...

So tomorrow is the big day for my exploratory surgery. I would be more nervous if I hadn't just had surgery a couple months ago because now I know how I react to the anesthesia (I like it!!!).

The problem? Well, yesterday afternoon my throat felt a little scratchy and by midnight I had a completely raw throat and stuffy nose. But no fever so I thought I may be okay. I went to the hospital for my pre-op blood tests and asked the nurse, and she said to just go ahead and take some cold medicine. This sounded suspicious to me since the last time I had surgery they monitored my pre-operative meds pretty closely so I decided to call my surgeon. Good thing. She said I could take Tylenol cold and Chloraseptic but nothing with aspirin. Makes sense right?

So I raid the Walgreen's shelves for Airborne, Chloraseptic, some yucky blue Tylenol liquid and cough drops. And then I check my temperature again: 99.2 . This wouldn't be that bad except my normal basal temperature is around 97 so I know something is going on in there.

So, please cross your fingers that whatever germs I have get massacred by the onslaught of cold medicines. I know they can't do surgery if I get up in the morning with a fever and I DO NOT want to drag this surgery out any longer than it has been. And if I do go in, here's to hoping they get the stupid thing out and it's benign.

Thanks for all the good thoughts!!

Monday, July 28, 2008

"Stay Classy San Diego"

Isn't is ironic how once you get a career that offers you a lot of vacation time, you have too many responsibilities to actually use it?

With my work anniversary falling in August I was about to lose all but 80 hours of my accrued vacation time, so we decided to take a few extra days in California after my Nana's memorial service.

The service itself was fine. It was a Catholic memorial, like she'd wanted, and it was so touching to see some of her lifelong friends come out - although none of them were in good health at the age of 80+. The older I get, the more interested I am in listening to these people talk about the good old days. I find the war stories especially fascinating. I learned that after the bombing at Pearl Harbor, some of the wives and families of soldiers had to wait over six weeks to hear status of their loved ones. I can't imagine waiting six minutes, let alone six weeks. My Papa retired from the Navy and it's heartbreaking for me to think about the things he gave up to defend our country - births, birthdays, first days of school. I don't know if I could willingly make such a sacrifice.

But, with this being Corey's first trip to California I couldn't let it end with him just seeing all of downtown smoggy Riverside, so we headed down to Laguna Beach and then on to San Diego.

It was amazing to watch the sunset on the beach with our shoes in our hands and our jeans rolled up, but mostly I savor the sounds. It's so calm and peaceful listening to the waves roll in - I feel like I could pitch a tent on the sand and never miss modern conveniences.

But, I will say that our hotel room ON the beach was a nice respite. We stayed on Coronado island on base (the military does have its perks) and we literally walked out of our hotel room onto the beach.

If I hadn't been so excited about seeing the penguins at Sea World I would have wanted to stay there for weeks!

I have been to Sea World several times, but the last time was many years ago. I was sure we'd have a good time, but I think I underestimated how much fun we would really have.

It was fantastic! Besides just the penguin exhibit (which I dragged Corey into twice) there were amazing dolphin and whale shows, and a fireworks show to end the evening that was absolutely perfect. If I could go again tomorrow I'm sure I'd enjoy it just as much!

Alas, we had to come back and, well, you can see how exciting that was by reading my last entry.

Now I just need to come up with a reason to use my other 160 hours of vacation!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Blog absence and killer scorpions

Sorry I've been lagging with posts - the boy and I took a trip to California for my Grandma's memorial, and then we took a few days off to relax. Once I remember to download the pictures I'll write all about San Diego and our lovely trip to Sea World.

To bring our vacation abruptly to an end though, we had to come home to the wonderful insect-infested desert. I used to think that bugs only invaded dirty homes. As long as I vacuumed and didn't leave food on the floor I thought I was safe. And then I moved into a house that had a little backyard and I learned otherwise. They are everywhere!! Ants, Roaches, Spiders, Earwigs - and my new sworn enemy: the scorpion.

My first sighting was when we first moved into our house and it crawled out of the duct work on the 12 foot vaulted ceiling. Luckily, the boy is smart and he defeated it with a shower rod. My second interaction was a bit more horrific as this one decided to join me in the shower. Screaming and covered in shampoo, I streaked out of the walk-in shower and down the hall shouting at Corey to rescue me. By the time I regained my composure and washed the Redken out of my eyes the monster was smooshed with a shoe and flushed.

When we got back from vacation I was nervous to walk into the house as I figured the bugs had taken over, but I was pleasantly surprised to see my home exactly as we'd left it. Little did I know those little bastards just hid well. I almost stepped on #3 with bare feet in the kitchen and noticed with great trepidation that it appeared to be a baby before the boy dispatched it with a Nike. "Baby scorpion means there's a mama scorpion," I whined from my perch atop the dining room table.

"Nah, it was just a little one. Not a baby at all," he soothed.

Whatever. The boy is a liar because #4 (Big Momma) and I met this morning when I was all alone in the house after the boy left for work. I was walking around getting things together when my bad eyesight revealed something suspicious on the wall in the hallway. Blinking and rubbing my bleary eyes, it appeared to move enough to send me screaming into the living room. After putting on boots (that I shook out profusely before donning) and arming myself with a broom I ventured past it to the bedroom, grabbed my glasses, and once again peered around the corner. Sure enough, the demon was perched on the baseboard taunting me with it's huge talon of a tail. It must have been 6 inches across (or so) and a good half-pound.

I shrieked and ran back into the bedroom, contemplating my options: a) call Corey and demand he turn around and drive home for an emergency rescue, b) throw a huge box on top of it with a note telling him to kill what's inside when he gets home, c) leave the house, pretending I hadn't seen it, and never come back, or d) suck it up and deal with it myself. Briefly, option e entered my mind, but I thought that firing a 9mm several times in to the floor might cause damages and police presence.

Then I realized that if Corey ever gives in and we have kids I'm going to have to protect them from evil like this. So, I retreat to the bedroom (stopping several times to pop my head around the corner and make sure it's still there) and put on my scorpion-killing uniform: snowboard pants, a men's sweatshirt, Air Force gloves, and knee-high leather boots. No skin from the neck down is showing and this makes me feel safer. I grab the boy's boot, and holding it from the very top, I tiptoe around the corner into the hallway. The monster is still there, pointing its tail at me viciously and making what I can only assume is a battle cry of weird hissing sounds. We play this little game for about 20 minutes where I get close enough to hit it, and then run away screaming. It doesn't get tired though, and is waiting for me every time I come back around the corner. Finally, in a moment of adrenaline-rushing bravery, I attack it with the boot yelling something like, "Ahhhh, die scorpion, Ahhhhhh, Ohmygod, die, die, die." I hit it so many times that the pieces blended in with our brown carpet. Then, I placed the boot on top of its body and ran into the bedroom to stand on the bed until my heart rate returned to something healthy.

I am now a warrior.

Christina - 1, Evil Scorpion - Nothing.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Single Barrel Whiskey and a Straw...

Last year the boy and I toured the Jack Daniel's distillery when we were in Tennessee. Even though I can't drink anymore because of my bladder disease I can still almost taste the air in the room above - the single barrel room. It's heavenly, really. Even if you're not a huge fan of whiskey you can appreciate the amount of work that went into this one little barrel of liquid pleasure. And right now I wish I could drink a whole bottle.

If you'll remember back to not so long ago, Corey was having a little bit of belly trouble. Well, today (a week after taking the tests) we finally know what's wrong. The overachiever that he is, he managed to grow a ginormous gallstone in his teeny tiny little gall bladder and it's wrecking the program. Hello surgery.

And yesterday, because I also cannot ever make things simple, I found a new doctor. A doctor that felt around and announced, "You have a lump. I've never found one there before." I also enjoy exceeding expectations, but stumping a surgeon is beyond even my wildest dreams. Hello surgery.

So, very soon the boy and I will be having matching laparoscopic surgeries to remove various items from our bodies. I will be asking for my appendix and gall bladder to be ripped out as well - just to avoid it in the future.

We will also be entering a karmic retribution 12-step program to try and get the universe back on our side. Step 1: If we have ever hurt your feelings, cut you off in traffic, laughed at your hideous outfit (that's just me, not Corey), or had a hotel room above you in Vegas we are unequivocally sorry. It will never happen again as we are becoming Buddhist, homeopathic, carbon footprint reducing Kabbalah lovers and we implore you to forgive us in whatever language and religion you feel obligated to.


Friday, June 27, 2008

Award time

So it's about time that I mention how proud I am of the boy. Not only did he win the NCO of the Quarter board that I mentioned a few posts down, but he also went on to win the NCO of the Quarter for the entire Maintenance Group and will represent them in a board for top NCO of the Quarter for all of Luke AFB. This is such a great accomplishment and I'm so proud of him for all he does. This award comes from not only his interview in front of a board, but also from recognition of his community service, leadership skills, and character. I am so lucky to have a man that doesn't go in to work just to bring in a paycheck - he does his job honorably and makes an impact on many other lives. Our kids will be lucky to have such a great father.

In less important news, I am in the middle of a crisis. No, I didn't accidentally overdose on Percocet (again), and I don't need another surgery. I need a new hair stylist. My favorite stylist of all time 'retired' to be a full time mom 6 months ago and I've been stranded, alone of the island of bad hair since then. What was once long feathered layers had turned into a mane reminiscent of a 60's hippie wig. It's dark, it's poker straight, and it just lays there. It's also waaaay too long. I love having long hair, but when it's getting caught in the back waistband of my jeans - well, that's just taking things too far.

So next week, I will venture into the world of first dates with stylists. We will chat nervously about celebrities, maybe drink a sparkling water, and see if there is any chemistry brewing. If God is on my side I will hopefully be sporting a much sleeker head of hair the next time any of you sees me!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Double Quarter Pounder of Death

As I mentioned earlier, I've been the worst housewoman ever over the past few weeks. I get home from work exhausted, in need of several pain killers, and not wanting to do anything but sleep. I used to cook dinner almost every night, and make sure there were plenty of (healthy) leftovers for Corey to take as lunch the next day. Well, as I haven't been cooking in the first place, there haven't been leftovers to take. Thus begins the story of how a double quarter pounder ruined our Wednesday.

The boy has school on base until late on Tuesday and Thursday nights. This means that I have to pack not only a lunch for him, but also a dinner. With my lack of cooking, I must confess I was turning a blind eye and pretending that my darling love was probably picking up a nice garden salad and tofu crisps to satiate his hunger. I secretly knew he was running thru the drive-thru and chose to ignore, so I take the blame.

Tuesday night he got home around 10pm complaining that his stomach had been hurting all during class. I gave him Tums and Mylanta and we went to bed. 20 minutes later he was still tossing and turning and complaining of his belly hurting. I found it odd, and asked what he'd eaten. "Oh, I had McDonald's," he answered sheepishly. "But what did you have at McDonalds, darling?" I knew immediately it wasn't going to be good from his guilty face and he reported that he'd only had a double quarter pounder with cheese, fries and a coke.

By 2:30 am the pains hadn't gotten better and had migrated to his right side. His abdomen felt rigid to me and with both of us thinking he might have a little appendix problem we jumped into the car and rushed to the Emergency Room. Let me just say that if he had needed an emergency Appendectomy I would be writing his eulogy right now because he would have died waiting to be seen in the emergency room. By 5:something (the sleepless hours blurred together) he was told to drink some CT Scan solution and miraculously, he started feeling better.

A Doogie Howser resident stuck on the morning shift finally came in and told him that they had no idea what was causing his pain, and that it could be gall stones. I had a sneaky suspicion it was more like a grease attack, but I kept my mouth shut.

By last night he was home in bed and feeling much better - trying to get me to serve him five pounds of the fajitas I made for dinner. I think that men must have errant DNA leftover from the caveman days telling them that they must consume all edible material within a two mile radius in preparation of famine. Corey is not a big guy, but if I let him he could scarf down enough to feed a Roman Catholic Italian family and then yell from the bedroom, "Babe, do we have anything to eat?"

If any of you watched The Cosby Show growing up you'll know why I always expect to find the middle eaten out of the lasagna and stuffed with paper towels. Luckily, my baby is still an amateur.

Monday, June 16, 2008


I don't know if this is an issue for all of society, or simply a personal defect: I am physically unable to wake up on Monday mornings until around 10am. This ends up being problematic as Corey leaves for work at 5am and I follow at around 6:15. That means I've been at work for several hours before I can formulate complete sentences.

It's espeically difficult when you screw up your sleep cycle with late nights over the weekend, which we did in Pinetop. Granted, I'm ancient now and late nights mean past 1am for me, but still. So, if you're reading this and thinking that my writing resembles a 3rd grade essay on what I did over the weekend you now know why - it's only 8:30 on Monday morning.

We got out of town late Friday so we didn't make it up the mountain until close to 10pm and I was grouchy and tired and in mounds of pain even though I took 3 percoset. Needless to say, it was not a fun roadtrip. The rest of the 'vacation' was great though - the boy played golf and actually beat my Dad on one hole (which I guarantee will never happen again) and I got to cook a full meal for more than one person. I made Crab Stuffed Filet Mignon with Cabernet Blackberry reduction, creamed fresh sweet corn, and broiled parmesan asparagus. The first course salads were these bacon bowls, which I thought turned out adorable. That was followed with lemon meringue pie and my mom's first taste of homemade chocolate souffle, which I fear she loved a little too much. The best part was that we've been getting my mom new knives to replace the ones she got as a wedding present (33 years ago) so I was actually able to prepare the steaks without hacksaw intervention. Hallelujah. Now, if I can only get her out of the house long enough to replace her 1970s mustard colored stove.

We had my Dad open his Patron silver and the wallet we got him for Father's Day and hit the road yesterday to make it back here in time for our self imposed 8pm bed check. So, even though we had less than 48 hours in the mountains it was a nice respite from the hellacious heat (and my lack of cooking). The boy's already dreaming of repeating the 7th hole over 4th of July weekend.

Oh, and although it's completely off the topic of this post - the boy won NCO of the quarter for his squadron and I couldn't be prouder. I mean, I'd pick him as the winner but I had no idea that the commanders of the Air Force are nearly as smart as I am. Cross your fingers for his even bigger board tomorrow!!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Oh yeah...

To avoid any confusion - no, we didn't get hitched yet so my last name is not yet Park. However, his last name is cooler than mine and I'll be taking it anyway so that's why I called it "The Park Family". We do have a plant, so technically there are three living things in our house. That constitutes a family, right?

I'm a lemming...

So everyone has a blog, and I feel left out. But, the problem is that we don't have cute kids and dogs to put pictures up of, so I'm not entirely sure what this blog will be for. I guess at the very least years from now our kids can look back and see what a boring life mom and dad led before them.
Today was my fourth bladder treatment - only 2 more to go - and it's getting easier and easier every time. Those of you that have had a catheter know that it's not exactly how you'd like to spend your Saturday nights, but it has been tolerable. And the really great news is that I think it's making a difference. We'll see for sure next week, but I'm very optimistic that my Percoset habit can be laid to rest very soon.
The boy (I call Corey "the boy") has a board tomorrow for NCO of the Quarter, which I think is a much bigger deal than he does - and I'm so proud of him. We'll celebrate by driving up to the White Mountains and visiting my parents. The boy hates the heat and is happy to discover that not all of Arizona smells like a landfill, so we usually have a good time. I cook, he golfs with my dad, we watch movies on their ginormous TV (and then I spend 4 hours in the car listening to why we need a ginormous TV).
I'm not sure yet what I'll cook but usually it's creamy, buttery, sugary goodness and they eat every bite. I've been such a lame house wench since I've been sick and the boy is lucky if I have anything ready to go for him when he leaves for work at the crack of dawn. I'm convinced that my cooking is the sole reason he fell in love with me in the first place so I better step it up! Who knows how many brunette Yankee cooks there are out there just waiting to snatch up my uniform wearing Southern man.