a jumble of Thursday thoughts

I don’t want to sound overly presumptuous, but is it too much to ask that all the electrical outlets in my house work? I’m particularly thinking of the outlets in the kitchen that refuse to cooperate and charge the ipad. How can I play my midnight game of Scrabble if I can’t charge the ipad? How can I beat the ipad if it’s dead? If it’s dead how can I charge it when the outlets don’t work? It’s really becoming a vicious cycle. 

I like most holidays and am always open to a reason to decorate/celebrate accordingly. I plan on dressing Sesame in holiday appropriate outfits as much as possible. That being said, St. Patrick’s Day does NOTHING for me. Why does everyone and their mother all the sudden pretend they’re Irish for that one day only? Where’s the holiday where we all celebrate Italians and Portuguese? I really don’t get it. I was under the impression I was all of 4 drops Irish which I don’t feel is enough to celebrate, but Dad reminded me his grandfather came over from Ireland so that makes me what, 1/8 Irish? Maybe? More 4 than drops. For the record, I have nothing against the Irish. God bless the Irish and the fact that their holiday makes corned beef go on sale.

Speaking of corned beef, I had to visit the commissary yesterday which everyone who’s associated with the military knows is basically tied with Christmas for being the best time of the year. I went during what I have narrowed down to the As Golden As It’s Going to Get Hour and it was surprisingly calm. Except that someone moved all the gluten free products across the aisle from the pads, the shampoo across from the ice cream and the bread was nowhere to be seen. Possibly a first world problem but I live in a first world country and I wouldn’t mind being given a map when the layout of the store changes.

I’m debating growing my bangs out again. This debate has gone on for the last 12 years and frankly I don’t see it ending before I die. 

The biggest drama since it snowed 2” is about to hit Fort Campbell. The tv show Nashville is coming to film an episode on post. Guess who’s planning on being their next big star.

I’ll be the only one who doesn’t look like my life is being ruined by fame and fortune.

Besides the international recognition I’m sure to receive, the hair and makeup team I’ll be given will probably solve my bang dilemma.

good people comes in small packages

Everyone one knows I love, love Jenn and her munchkins (and I’m STILL upset they up and left me to live in another country). A few months after we moved here Jenn introduced me to Aggie and the rest, as they say, is history. Jenn and Aggie were nice to let me hang out with them even though I was the husband-not-deployed, childless third wheel. Although I think they liked the childless part because it meant I entertained theirs. 

I will now attempt to give a small sampling of why I love Aggie and Co. (You might be thinking, “What’s up with you? Do you love everybody?” Pretty much.)

* Aggie is one of the most generous people I’ve ever met. In the span of one week, she gave me the following:

two potted ferns
a pair of baby shoes
a set of curtains
a bag of maternity clothes
a bag of baby clothes
a cloth bag
a half bag of baby carrots
Starbucks hot chocolate
two sets of decorative lights
three cans of paint
eight bottles of various Asian sauces
five packs of Chickfila sauce
a container of Mongolian stew
a bagel
two giant bags of food

She was cleaning out her house and I was the lucky recipient of all her goods! 

* She makes really good food. As I’ve mentioned, Sesame didn’t object to eating food cooked in her kitchen.

* She let me come over to “help” pack when we both knew I was probably just going to lay on the floor. 

* They let me go to Luke’s homecoming with them. Aggie introduced to me Luke as, “The person who watches your kids” and he responded with complete graciousness. I would have been all “I’D RATHER BE KISSING MY WIFE THAN SHAKING YOUR HAND.”
* I ADORE my little Levi and he adores Christopher. Seldom in my life has a child gone to another (non parental) person when I’m around, but Levi goes to Christopher over me every.single.time. Maybe it’s because Christopher isn’t always bringing up how Levi should be our son in law. 
But look! Here he is running towards me with pure joy written all over his face! I must have had a lollopop. 
* Aidan usually chooses hugging his wind-up chicken over hugging me, 

but he came right over OF HIS OWN FREE WILL and gave me a big hug the night I said goodbye to them. I’m proud to say I did not start crying then and there. 

Then little Levi wanted to get in on the action too.

I love them so much.
I am so sad that the J’s have gone and left me here alone. Why do people keep leaving me? Bright side: they’re only a one day drive away (unlike some people…) and we’re going to visit when Sesame is born. I can only go so many months without eat Aggie’s food and kissing my favorite Chinese babies. 

every party needs some music and a few flags

Thank you for all your sweet congratulatory comments about our up and coming baby. If I figure out a way, I’ll print them for Sesame’s baby book. We call the baby Sesame because that was the size when I told Christopher. I think it’s a much sweeter name than Kidney Bean, it’s current size. 

Three years ago today I packed Mom and the twins in the car and drove up to Boston to meet Christopher for the first time. There’s really nothing so romantic as bringing half your family on a date to meet your future spouse.

Obviously, that first date went well because now we’re married and today I stuck a little velcro patch on his chest that says he’s moving on up in the Army world. I have only been to one other promotion of his, so I was very interested in the whole process, especially since I was going to be involved. Everyone knows I love a good military event. That’s one big difference between Christopher and I. I love the pomp and circumstance and he can’t wait to move on with whatever else needs to be done. The other day he came home from work talking about various ceremonies coming up that he thought were getting a little out of hand. I try to be supportive, but sometimes we see things differently. 

Christopher: He said we need flags from all 50 states and I said that according to regulations, we do not. This is ridiculous.
Me: Why don’t you want flags? Remember when we went to that thing at Fort Drum and all the guys were doing that marching thing (I am so good with the specifics!) around the field? They had flags and it looked so good.
Christopher: But we don’t NEED flags and we have better things to do with our time than locate flags from a different unit.
Me: Well, I think the flags would be a nice touch.

Christopher: And we have to sing the Army song, the Transportation song and the…
Me: I love it when you sing songs!!!!
Christopher: Why? No soldier is good at singing unless he’s in the Army band.

Me: But that makes it authentic. I think all those songs are good and you should add the national anthem to the list. That would be really lovely.

And then he put his head down on the banister and groaned. I could almost see a little bubble over his head that said, “Et tu, Brute?”

Christopher told me what I needed to do for today’s ceremony, and let’s be honest, I way over thought such a simple process. I understood exactly what was going to happen (remove the current rank, stick on the new, the end), but I was very intent on looking good in the process. Which would explain why I was horrified to discover on the drive to post that the morning sickness lollipop I was enjoying was turning my tongue a lovely shade of yellow. This caused a slight conundrum. Not finishing the lollipop might mean that I go through the HORRIFYING experience of getting sick during the ceremony, but finishing it meant that I’d have a VERY yellow tongue. Vanity won out and I ditched the lollipop.
I arrived early and stood around watching the goings on in hopes of some good blogging material (aka take my mind of the fact I didn’t finish my lollipop). I saw a soldier who’s last name is Nine which got me thinking of all his possible nicknames/ways he could be made fun of. Poor guy will never be number one.
The promotion itself took all of 3.2 minutes and I didn’t even have to remove the old rank, something I had rehearsed in my head 36 times. I realize this is all very basic and could be done by a four-year-old, but I wanted to do well at my big moment in front of the colonels and majors. I feel it’s all practicing for my moment in the spotlight when I dine at the White House when Christopher is a four-star general.
The day held very little pomp and circumstance, a fact for which Christopher was very grateful. But don’t think I didn’t consider bring some little American flags and an ipod to play God Bless America.

two redheads, a brunette, and me

One of the only times I’ve been excited to move since we got married was when we moved from Fort Lee to Fort Campbell. I wasn’t attached to anyone at Fort Lee and I had a “friend” at Campbell. It was a very loose friendship because after all, she was off the internet and you never can tell about those internet people. (Said the girl who met her husband online.) I was slightly hesitant about giving her my phone number but decided that if she was a mass murderer out to get us, I could always switch phones, change my identity, and join the Witness Protection Program. 

We met in person on May 25th, 2012 and much to my joy and relief, she wasn’t a mass murderer. Fifteen months, countless visits, and more than 5,000 texts later, she’s my very best friend in Kentucky/Tennessee/southern part of the country.

I think we all know by now I’m talking about Jenn
Here we are the day we met:

And here we are reenacting the photo a year later. I have more chins, Jenn is looking all fit and trim (she’s basically a super-marathoner) and Molly still refuses to look at the camera and acknowledge she’s associated with us.

Everyone needs a Jenn. She introduced me to Chick Fil A, took me to the pumpkin patch and Christmas parade, introduced me to Aggie the Awesome and her munchkins (my other best friends here), convinced me to get on instagram and told me about new blogs. For weeks I would go over to visit every Friday afternoon to gossip. We gossip on other days too, Friday was just our big day. We’ve even kept lists of what to discuss. She asked me to watch her kids while she sent Steve off to Afghanistan and had me over for supper the night he came home. Because of her I can spell lieutenant properly. She let me come to her house at midnight when there was shooting at our apartment and Christopher wasn’t home. She wanted me to pick her up from the airport even though we almost died on the drive there the day I dropped her off. We went wogging (walking/jogging) together. She discussed in detail the pros and cons (mostly pros) of working on a Josh Turner tour. She let me eat all manor of gluten free foods from her pantry and told me about the best gf chocolate chip cookies at the commissary. We had a movie night which turned into recording ourselves attempting to plank. That’s when I learned this:
As if all that didn’t accurately convey our friendship, here’s a short list of reasons why we’re perfect for each other:

* we both married transportation officers

* we both have curly hair

* we both have a father who owns a business
* we both have three brothers and one sister

* we both have a sister named Elizabeth

* we both have siblings who are twins

We’re pretty much the same person.
Steve and Christopher were basically forced to become friends. (Don’t all grown men love when their wives set them up on play dates?) During our first visit, Jenn and I “toured the upstairs” which meant we stood in the hallway to discussed relatives and placentas and our mutual love for subpar blogs while the men talked downstairs. Talked is a very generous way of putting it. They occasionally let out a few words with VERY LONG gaps of complete silence in between. When we went over for supper a few weeks ago, the men stood out by the grill talking for hours while we ladies stayed indoors. They’ve come so far.

Sammy screamed bloody murder the first time we met. By the third time he saw me, he marched into my house like he owned the place and spent some quality time sniffing all my seasonings. He’s gotten so accustomed to having me around that I’ve even been mentioned in his bedtime prayers. He probably mostly likes me because when I’m around he gets to play in the CFA play area, but I like to think he enjoys my natural charm and the knowledge that he’s among my favorite little boyfriends.

Molly was just a ball of chub and red hair when we met, and not too much has changed except somehow she’s become an even cuter ball of chub and red hair. I love her so much. Jenn said I could keep her when they move to Korea, but she went ahead and got Molly a passport so I guess that means she’s going.

Monday we met at CFA for supper. It was the saddest visit ever because I had to tell them goodbye before they move 62 million miles away to Korea. I told myself not to cry right there in the middle of the parking lot but of course I did. I also told myself that this is EXACTLY WHY I should never love people so much and from now on I will live in a cave like a hermit.  
Thanks for being my friend, Jenn. Don’t let the Asian ladies take my spot. You know it’s impossible that they have the same blog lists we do! Just as soon as we get the Army to finalize the paperwork we’ll be over. In the meantime, keep my guest bed open. I love you more than chocolate! 

{almost} picture perfect

Yesterday Christopher brought home our professional photo from last month’s ball.
Of course I have comments.
1. Christopher’s bowtie. The thing looks like its about to turn into a propeller and fly away. 
2. The photographer knew just where to stand to include my triple chins in the picture.
3. The back of my dress is the prettiest part. Next time I wear it I’ll pay the photographer to take a picture of me from behind. That wouldn’t be odd or possibly uncomfortable.
4. Note to Future Sarah- don’t have your hair done 5 hours before the event. Especially if it’s a windy day.
Other than that I have no complaints! 

I didn’t get a picture of the men wearing helmets that made them look like martians

Friday night I put on my fancy dress and Christopher put on his fancy pants uniform* in preparation for one of my favorite Army events- the ball. 
*I use only the most proper terminology
My friend Scherrie was there with her husband Daniel. Scherrie is known in our house as my “replacement friend for when Jenn moves across the ocean.” 
Her presence lifted some of the weight off Christopher’s shoulders to engage in my fashion discussions about what other ladies thought appropriate to wear. Scherrie and I didn’t get to sit at the same table, but that didn’t stop me from running over to get her opinion on whether the centerpieces were from Pinterest. I don’t have a good picture of them because Christopher doesn’t like when I make a big deal about getting pictures during formal events. Something about protocol and behaving properly.

Speaking of taking pictures, a four star general gave the speech and I didn’t get a picture of/with him. The more patches and pins a person has on their uniform the more likely I am to be impressed, and  he was the most impressive of them all. I was tempted to waltz up and tell him about the rabbit I had when I was young who was a four star general in the Bunny Corps, but that would probably be against protocol. It probably also have been considered weird.  

He wasn’t the only general in attendance. General Bly the Eagle was also there.
It’s not every day I attend a ball with my husband, a general with many stars AND a bald eagle.
 God bless America.