Sunday, March 28, 2010

Unknown Patriots

I received an email from a fellow military sister today who was concerned about her husband and that he hadn't called in awhile and that was unlike him.... and she was fearful and worried.

A lot of people don't know what it's like to be a military spouse or child. The pressure at times can be more than one person should have to deal with, but unless you have a helpful support group surrounding you, the weigh can at times be more than one can bear. All carry jobs whether it's at home or in the work place, deal with births alone, caring for the kids, raising the kids, keeping bills, running the house with all it's maintenance issues and some even have disabled children or elderly parents to take care of. I call these women and sometimes men... Unknown Patriots.

Unknown Patriots are willing to go against the grain... they're willing to give up precious time with there spouse for a bigger cause. Their willing to risk their marriage, seeing their children grow up without the other parent, whether we are at war or not. Because we certainly don't do it for the pay, that's for sure!

Unknown Patriots are usually never really noticed unless there is a death and even then it's usually short lived. They are use to updating their wills frequently and really have to consider who their children will go to if something would happen to Mom and Dad... and believe me, it's happened. There use to having their significant other not there to help them make decisions and often times receive ridicule and judgement from others. I know I've been at the receiving end.

Many people in passing have said to me that they hope the war ends soon so there won't be any more fighting. I usually just listen and don't reply... but the truth is, we don't want the war to end until there is no threat to us as a nation. And believe me, the reason we're fighting over there is so that we can keep those knuckleheads busy on their own turf and they are not over here. Believe me when I say that they are a threat and we need remember that. They want to destroy us as a nation, they want to take over and they're willing to wait along time for it to happen.

I personally sit here today with a boat load of concerns... I had a huge water leak in my kitchen and then found out that there was old mold growing under the flooring that my daughter is extremely allergic too. I'm now living in a camper in my driveway until it can be fixed. I also have an old softball injury that has reared it's ugly head and I have to wear a walking cast for two more weeks until surgery. So to put it lightly... I'm a bit overwhelmed. But we keep moving forward. I keep moving forward for my girls to see... for my husband, for others around me to see. And then I thank God that He's sent such caring friends that can help me while I go through it, who don't judge me and don't have some agenda. They just love us for us.

So today as I've written a more serious blog entry, I wish for you to read Psalm 91 which keeps me going and makes me feel strong no matter what comes my way. And I pray it on my husbands behalf.
Psalm 91
  • 1.
  • He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
  • 2.
  • I will say of the Lord, "He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust."
  • 3.
  • Surely he will save you from the fowler's snare and from the deadly pestilence.
  • 4.
  • He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
  • 5.
  • You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day,
  • 6.
  • nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday.
  • 7.
  • A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you.
  • 8.
  • You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked.
  • 9.
  • If you make the Most High your dwelling-- even the Lord, who is my refuge--
  • 10.
  • then no harm will befall you, no disaster will come near your tent.
  • 11.
  • For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways;
  • 12.
  • they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
  • 13.
  • You will tread upon the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.
  • 14.
  • "Because he loves me," says the Lord, "I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
  • 15.
  • He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him.
  • 16.
  • With long life will I satisfy him and show him my salvation."

Until Tomorrow,
Java Girl

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Barbie


In a world that puts so much emphasis on looks and shapes.... we tend to forget about one's character and when I think about character from my childhood, I remember Barbie.

Barbie was my next door neighbor when I was a little girl. Her Dad was a doctor and once in awhile he and his wife would take a trip and they would ask my Mom to house and kid/teenager sit. Now Barbie was the youngest of five kids and I always remember her clearly because everything she did and said spoke volumes to me. You see she was Down Syndrome, she was always active, always planning and always having fun. And for me... the queen of misfits, we were the perfect match.

For example, she could steal cookies like a stealthy ninja and make the whole adventure seem too much fun for one little eight year old to handle. Another time she started to drown my sister in her family pool by holding her down under the water and then within seconds of me trying to reason with her that she was hurting my sister, she then saved my sister from her imminent peril.

And her signature hand gesture was the peace sign.

After looking at this picture closely, with me toothless... is my sister in the very front with her face cut in half. And I'm a little troubled by her bangs, it looks like she cut them herself... which was highly likely seeing that our Mom had a Beauty Shop in the back room of our house. To the left of me is Barbie, then Tommy her brother, then Maureen (behind Tommy) and Mary (one of the twins).

So my challenge to you today is to recall someone who's character made you stop and take note.

Gotta go call my sister and tease her about her bangs in 1973,
Java Girl

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Say Hello To My Little Friend

About a month ago I took our family on a mystery trip and we ended up at the shelter. Dad thought we were going out to eat.... but he was wrong. And the animal lover in him said "Yes" to this Heeler/Something and another mix. We named him Dutch.


This is a rare moment in his life... but when it happens we try to take a picture

This picture perfectly reflects his attitude pretty much all the time...

Here Daughter #2 tries to have some playful banter... but it's usually short lived and she gets traumatized one way or another.


Shortly after this shot... he went over and drank her ice tea, just for spite.

But occasionally Dutch will hold still for two seconds, for a great shot.

Now this is a whole other story, how Dutch helped Snoop get through some serious paranoia issues. Especially the one don't touch me... you freak me out issue. Below is Snoop going through treatment. jk They're just playing here.

And all of Dutchy Boy's craziness has brought Snoop to a point of being a pretty balanced dog. He actually initiates the playing and now when Dutch bites him on his back legs he just sits on Dutch's head instead of having a panic attack.

Remember to scratch you dog behind his ears for me...

Love,
Java Girl




Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Cat Fights And Other Serious Matters


This is Rascals our beloved cat... He's a lover not a fighter....


See what I mean...


Then one day this guy came along and we named him Sunny and as cute as he is and even though he's probably the best lap cat this side of the Mississippi, he's got some flaws. He's unneutered. Not good! But he seemed to want to try to fit in at first here on the farm even though the dogs and cats didn't seem to care for him a whole lot. But we thought we'd try and give him a chance.


Now this little girl Lucky didn't feel the same way the other cats did, but she's is very young and impressionable and hasn't had a whole lot of experience with boys, but still she was a little taken with Sunny. She would flirt from the fence tops and roll around on the ground in front of Sunny. But I let this behavior go, because she's been fixed. I personally think that it wasn't Christ like for me, but we're talking about the animal world and not my daughters. So any who.



Here's our hero Purry and you better believe that he'll take on any creature this side of the Mississippi and maybe even on the other side of the Mississippi. He even went after our dear departed Doberman named Chief on several occasions and let me tell you it was not pretty for Chief! FYI - he wasn't killed by Purry.


As you can see this is a Felis catus that can't be reckoned with. He has another side. There's the sweet I love Jaclyn side and then there's the I'm going to tear you apart side. If you know what I mean.


So the reason I'm telling you all this is that we had an incident at our house. Sunny one day decided that he didn't like Rascals aka Lover and that he was going to start a fight with him. Sunny went after our sweet Rascals and that boy didn't know what to do.... so he ran under the porch and Sunny followed. As all three of us gals listened and expressed our alarm, we could hear Rascals kind of doing this, please help me I have no street smarts cry, while Sunny was doing this I going to kill you growl. And that's when we knew we had to do something! So Daughter #1 decided to wake Purry up from his nap and throw him under the porch to save Rascals from Sunny. And as you may be imagining Purry rogered up for the job and took care of business within seconds.

Everyone pretty much made it out unscathed, but we gals made a decision then and there that Sunny needed a different home. This was hard for Daughter #1 because Sunny had pulled on her heart strings and they made a connection. So after a call to the Animal Shelter, we felt okay about dropping off Sunny being that they don't euthanize them at all. So my brave Daughter #1 took Sunny to the Animal Shelter and when she came home she was a bit upset that the desk clerk didn't want to hear how good of a cat he was and then Daughter #1 had to hand him over to a prisoner who was doing his community service at the shelter. And her rose colored glasses became a little fogged up by the event.

So today I'm glad to report that things are much calmer here... except for Lucky who had the crush, she'll just have to learn that they'll be other cats in the cat pan.

I've got to tell you... sometimes the drama around here, is more than I can bear,

Until tomorrow,
Java Girl








Monday, March 15, 2010

Niagara Falls in My Kitchen - Part 2

So after Mom and Leroy arrive and we have coffee, they decide they want to go out for lunch. So I get ready and walk out and my Mother-in-law says, "There you are." So I fully know that I did look as bad as I thought when they arrived.

We eat and drive home and it wasn't two minutes and my kitchen island started exploding with water and it is pouring out everywhere and even shooting through the wooden boards around the island!!! Mom, Leroy and my daughters are running around like chickens with our heads cut off and water is truly spraying and pouring out onto our oak floors. I kicking myself internally for not having hubby show me the water cut off to the house. Finally after about 5 minutes... Leroy braves the flood under the sink and dives in... he finds the shut off valve and turns it off. Water everywhere and every towel in the house now laying on my floors, watering pouring into the dinning and living room and also under my stove and refrigerator. And me cursing the day that the previous owners installed wood flooring in an area that gets wet!!!

Then two of my neighbors who I called arrived on my front door step and one is handy with a wrench to shut off the water which is at the end of the driveway and another friend who is master of all trades. Now these guy's are from the south... as in I don't much like northerns and my dear Father-in-law starts ranting about why the state of Tennessee doesn't have a shut off valve right outside. My neighbors just look at him and I start to die inside, because these are men that I may need to call on again and I don't need a revival of North meets South, if you know what I mean. So it's at this very moment that I have this uncontrollable urge to start laughing.... It was so stinkin funny that I had to run outside and start laughing. I felt like I just stepped into the worst Twilight Zone episode ever, Amen.

So I've learned as a military wife that I'm so grateful for a new day... because I'm waiting for the Water Damage Cleanup Team to show up any minute and give me a verdict. If we have to get rid of the flooring, I'm absolutely positively NOT putting in wood floors.

Hubby, are you out there? Are you reading this? I have to admit that all the years we've been married and all the maintenance issues that I've weathered alone... I just want to assure you that if I was going to leave you.... it probably would be now. But don't worry, what saved you is that you bought me my Dream House.

And let's talk about that paycheck I don't get,
Java Girl

Sweet Jesus Please Help Me!

I've had the most absolutely positively busiest week and a half that you could ever imagine!! The End

Just kidding, but really I'm not kidding... life has just been amazingly unpredictable lately, first starting with the Mennonite who was putting in my fence. You know, they're private and work for cheap and private (Did I say that already?). But anyways, I asked if he wanted to bring his family over for coffee and cinnamon rolls and darned if he didn't except and show up with the cutest wife and two little boys. And we had a great time!!

Next, someone entered my barn without my permission (my brother-in-law calls it Unauthorized Access) that means now I'm having a gate, locks and sensor lights put on the barn. Busy Busy Busy!!

Then for the topper, not that my girls and I haven't had enough excitement.... then my Mother-in-law and her husband planned to stop by on their trip from Alabama to Michigan. Now you have to understand this duo, here... I'll give you some ideas:

1) They have a GPS but don't know how to use it.

2) They weren't able to back their car out of our drive, so we had to turn it around and back it in for them.

3) My Mother-in-Law asked me if she could have a Cook Book that she gave to me for Christmas one year... and I absolutely didn't want to part with it, so I made up an excuse why I couldn't give it to her right then and there.

4) They recently learned how to answer their cell phones. Before they just used them for calls they were making, if they could get the number right.

5) And when Mom asked me to check my phone number in her cell phone to see if it was the right number... I noticed that she had the area code of Alaska, the first three number's from San Diego and the last four numbers of my home here. Oh My!

6) And when they got ready to leave I noticed that my Father-in-law's phone was dead and then I showed them how to charge it in the car.

Now what I'm telling you is nothing new to my Brother and Sister in Law and their spouses. We've all went through this same ritual with them. BUT they still continue to want use technology even though it should be the farthest thing from their minds.

So any who, yesterday there was a really slight chance that they were going to stop by, but again we weren't sure if they would call us and if they did, would they remember the exit off the freeway. So I was pretty sure that I would get fair warning before they showed up. As I lounged around in my pajamas and drank coffee by the fireside.. I was truly enjoying my moment of peace and quiet. That's when it happen, my youngest looked out the front door to check on her puppy, when I heard her say, "Get ready Mom... Grandma and Leroy are driving up the drive!!!!" Oh my goodness! I flew out of the chair and all I could think is the number one rule of all times when it comes to a Mother- in-law..... You want to look your best! I was absolutely not looking my best!!

To be continued tomorrow,
Java Girl

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

What About Homeschooling

Daughter #1 with her "princess hair" as her sister would call it....


Daughter #2 with the best piano teacher she ever had...


How a homeschooler learns measurements... just kidding


One of the coolest restaurants ever.. Corvette Diner!


I've been asked many times why we've homeschooled over these many years and my answer has changed too. The first reason we started to homeschool was because the principle of the school that our daughter was going to attend had lifestyle choices that we didn't agree with, being that we are Christians. Then after a friend said, "Just give it one year and see how it goes." We did... and where amazed that our oldest was reading already and excelling in all areas.

Next we noticed that it worked with my husbands work schedule... for example, Dad is home means "no school". Dad's gone means "school, school, school". And that worked for us. Next came something that we never imagined and that was the maturity that we saw growing in their little lives and we were amazed. After that there had been a death in my Husbands platoon and my girls knew this exceptional young man and so this changed them in another way..."That life and death are real." And next came concern for Daddy and we really learned to not take life for granted and to completely trust in God that He was/is going to keep our Daddy safe. And He has. This also encouraged an environment where our girls learned to trust in their faith no matter what happens.

So now my girls are older and could be on their own if they wanted. But home is still where they flourish and they crave the simple things. They stand up for what is right and they encourage others to do the same. There's so much of their Daddy in them and at times I feel like it's God's gift to me... that when Daddy is gone, I still have bit's and pieces of him here with me.

So my encouragement to you is to pray and ask God what he wants for your family and don't be afraid to step out on a limb! Because the climb is so worth it.

Until Tomorrow,
Nancy


Saturday, March 6, 2010

For the Love of Family

My Brother in law and his family stopped by while they were on a road trip home.... and I'm just so happy that living here in Tennessee has allowed us to be a great stopping point for friends and family while they travel from here to there.

We just love them to death!

And even though we haven't lived close to them... the kids still remember us and there is nothing we wouldn't do for them!

Java Girl

Always Make Time For Play....

Yesterday some dear friends of ours came over to drop off their oldest daughter who's become a cherished friend of Daughter #2. They also brought their two horses to spend the night which made me think that only in Tennessee would you get to bring your horses over for a sleep over. And our new pasture was just finished earlier that day, so the horses got to try it out.

Before they left we needed to have a vigorous game of kick ball....


Daughter #2 and friend are winning as you can see....


Our new puppy Dutch is stealing the bases....

Here Dutch waits patiently for the game to get over so he can play with the kids, who now aren't paying any attention to him....

I also need you to take a vote for me... we know for sure the Dutch has Heeler in him, but the we're still not sure if the other half is St. Bernard or German Shepherd ... what do you think?



Katie girl....

And this little gal will some day be President of the United States! And let me tell you, as the youngest of eight, she knows how to stand her ground.... For some reason I want to label this picture "Peanut".


Riding this morning....


And this little guy showed up this morning while I was putting my makeup on and I had my bathroom door open and when I felt a cat rubbing on my legs... I then looked down and saw this guy..... I screamed when I saw that he wasn't one of our three cats.

I'm afraid he's not going to leave...

Wishing you a Java Saturday!
Java Girl