Friday, March 26, 2010

Day 71: Making do with what you have

Dear Family-

An important skill to have is the ability to use what you have to get the job done.  This is a skill that can be used is any part of your life.  From making a repair to building something from a few scraps of wood laying about; it is really an invaluable skill to develop.   I saw the link below and was blown away by what this guy was able to accomplish on a shoestring budget.

Too cool....

Love you!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The Difference Between Men and Women

Dear Valiant-

Since I am currently not there to teach you the ins and out about being a dude, I found a learning video for you to watch that will help explain some of the differences between men and women. Enjoy!

The difference between men and women


Friday, March 19, 2010


Hello Family-

In case you were all wondering, at the time of this post, I have been gone 5,443,200 seconds. It is funny because it doesn't really seem like more than about 2,500,000 seconds. In either case, that is a helluva lot of Mississippi's. Not a whole lot has been happening on this side of the world. I think that I am finally starting to get settled in on this side of the world. Over this past weekend, my Wednesday and Thursday, I got back in to working out and it felt really good. I hope that you all catch a break with the colds and can get back on track soon as well. When I was in Korea, we had a calendar that we used to count the days until we got to leave. The modern version is a Excel spreadsheet that you enter your arrival and departure dates in to. It does some calculations and then tells you how much longer you have to go. In addition, it gives you a graphical representation of how much more of the "donut of misery" you have to consume before you go home. I think I like the calendar better....

Love you!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Hello Family-

Today's post is about one of my observations. The natural born citizens (NBC's) of Wonderland are "blessed" by being paid by the government for doing nothing more than spending money, praying 5 times a day and reproducing. Okay, that might be an exaggeration, but I think it sets the picture for my post. Because of this situation, the NBC's do not do much and expect everything to be done for them. In order to get things done, like having water, food, etc, the NBC's import labor in the form of third country nationals (TCN's) to do all of this work.

As an outsider, it is really amazing to watch the dynamic between the NBC's and TCN's. The TCN's are treated as almost non-human beings. The NBC's literally treat the TCN's as if they do not even exist. The TCN's are expected to get off the sidewalk at the approach of an NBC or the NBC would push by without even acknowledging the TCN's existence.

So, this observation has led me to question our treatment of illegal aliens in our country. Yes, they broke the law of our country by entering illegally. Yes, they cost our society economically more than they contribute to it. (don't even try and tell me differently) Yes, we need to get this issue resolved. But along the way, we started allowing ourselves to think of them as almost non-human. They die in the desert trying to get here and go through all sort of other hell in the process. Shouldn't we have enough compassion as a society to resolve this issue once and for all? Any thoughts?

Love you!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Odd things( mainly odd switches).

My laptops internet is not working and we're not able to connect to anything. So I look and look and mess around as much as I dare. Then after I fail to find the problem and fix it, my mom gives it a go. Well she tries and she can't find it so we call my dad. Well he says to do this, this and this, so we do. After all this he remembers to ask if the wireless switch on the side of my laptop is on. We turn it on and bang internet, Though we are still like, a switch are you serious? So the moral of the story is: people are dumb and put dumb switches on things, like how bad guys always put the reverse button on there death ray.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Blog Slacker

Hello Family-

As you may have noticed, I have been a bit of a blog slacker the last week or so. When you are tired and have been on the computer for the last 12 hours you tend not to hop back on right away. Dragging along the way I was, my creative juices really were not flowing. Then last evening I had a bit of weird dream. My computer was haunting me about not posting. I am taking that as a sign I need to get more regular on my blogging!

Love you!

Friday, March 12, 2010

New Game to Be Released

The adventure continues in the long-awaited sequel to the national best seller: Ball: Fetching Evolved.

We left off with our hero Lieutenant Lucy nomming ("eating/chewing" in LOL speak) on the "Frisbee of No Kibble".

This game starts off with the discovery that, unfortunately, some of the other frisbees remained loyal to their king and rose up against The Empire of The Ball. Lt. Lucy manages to put down the rebellion but her not-so-trusted-side-kick Daisy gets captured. Will the lieutenant be able to rescue Daisy before the frisbees turn her into a very,very large throw rug? And is the "The Frisbee of No Kibble" truly destroyed?

Find out in the sequel that is being released in early May for the reasonable price of $999,999,999,999,999,999,999,999,999,999.99. Console, controller, box , Instruction manual and and T.V. all sold separately.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mom's Nemesis

My mom has an arch enemy...The Serger! The most evil creature to not walk the earth. It is so powerful it can reduce my mom to dust with just one simple move. It asks her to (you may want to cover your ears or, now that I think about it, your eyes) it asks her to thread it. (Do you hear the sound of breaking glass reverberating through internet?) Four different spools with four different maze-like paths for the thread. Yes, I know how terrible it sounds. Amazingly, she sometimes wins, but most of the time she loses the battle with the serger . Well, that's all for today.

Fire Emblem

Fire Emblem is a game only for Nintendo systems ( unfortunately). It is a turn-based strategy game that involves multiple types of units that are one of a kind, as in your assassin is named Bob and that is the only Bob you will get and choices you make during the game will drive the course of the game. As you progress, you pick up new units and level up your old units. Your weapons don't last long, so you often have to replace them which means you have to manage your budget. You also have to keep your supply caravan loaded up with supplies including, of course, medicine. Over all it is an extremely fun game that is often difficult to complete. That is all for today.

Stow Aways!

It is a good thing we drove when we headed off to the Great Wolf Lodge on the western side of the state. These guys managed to tuck themselves into Buttercup's suitcase and I didn't find them until we were already in our hotel room! They'd never have made it through TSA screening at the airport. Vacation Desperados!
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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Crossing the Columbia River

Picture credit - Valiant -taken from a moving car on 3/1/10.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Awkward Moments

The rules have changed and I don't know the new rules. The truth of the matter is that Superman is gone from our home for almost a year. During that year, our lives at home will go on. We'll have things scheduled, things planned, schedules to keep...all the things that go into a normal family life. When Superman has the opportunity to Skype, however, we want to be there to talk to him. There is the rub. I don't know how to handle it when Superman Skypes through when we have guests in our home. Our guests deserve my attention. After all, I've invited them into our home. Superman deserves my attention, too, and he's my husband...I want to talk with him. Truthfully, though, I feel torn at the moment.

Am I supposed to expect my guests to just wait while I chat with Superman for half an hour? Am I supposed to expect Superman to understand when I am telling him, my husband, that I am too busy to chat online? What are the rules? This is actually one of the most challenging things I'm dealing with these days. Does anyone have an answer? A suggestion? What am I supposed to do in these awkward moments?

And what about bedtime when the kids have been super tired? Or when I'm just running out the door? I can't just ignore the call - it is my husband. Am I allowed to not have time right then? Is anything more important than my husband's call?

I know this might seem silly, but there are no rules for situations like this in a modern technology-assisted marriage.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Cool color test

This color test thing is scary good. This is my second set of results. The first set was "creator" and - are you ready? - a "social manager". Me and social skills are, like, not a team. We don't get all. It still guessed my personality pretty well, though. All I did was just pick colors. So, it was scary, but accurate. To wrap it up I say, "cool".

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Best Present

Dear Family-

I wanted to thank you for the wonderful presents you sent me in the "big box". I will have a good time with the movies and can't wait to get the X-Box going. Most of all I want to thank you for the wonderful pillow. It was an amazing present. It put a lot of things in to perspective for me that I had truly lost site of.

I can not really explain where my mind has been over the last few years. It is kind of like that scene in Star Wars where Yoda is admonishing Luke, "All his life has he looked away... to the future, to the horizon. Never his mind on where he was. Hmm? What he was doing. Hmph. Adventure. Heh. Excitement. Heh. A Jedi craves not these things. You are reckless" I have spent a lot of time worrying about the future and what is going to happen and not a lot of time in the here and now. This pillow really brought that in to perspective. Thank you!

Love you all.

Day 50: Fine Dining

Dear Family-

Today I want to share with you the fruits of all of the wonderful stuff you have been sending me. Over the past couple of weeks you guys have sent me a lot of supplies so I can cook for myself on my days off and such. Well, earlier, I shared with you my cooking a big batch of spaghetti sauce to have on hand. Today, I got to put it to good use. I made up some garlic toast, cooked some pasta, and heated up some ready to go sauce and wham o, dinner in 10 minutes. Looks good, huh?

Thanks for all the stuff! Love you!

Reality Check

Dear Family-

I imagine you guys think I am lounging in the lap of luxury over here in Wonderland, so I decided to share with you an example of my day off. During the work week, which for me is Friday-Tuesday, I don't really get much done around the apartment. I am averaging about 2 hours of free time each day at most during the week and really do not want to come back and clean. So, my days off are when I try to get all me cleaning and stuff done. This past Thursday is when I got most of my stuff done. The day was spent changing sheets, cleaning the bathroom, doing laundry, ironing, and cleaning the common areas of the apartment. Once you are use to living a certain way (clean sheets all the time, clean house) you can not live like a pig. Messes and dishes have to be cleaned up promptly. I am finding that you have to dust and mop this place every week or you end up dirty really fast. There is always this super fine dust in the air and it is even worse during the dust storms. I am having a hell of a time getting use to mopping. We have a mop, a bucket, and this cone thing to wring out the mop. Well, this past Thursday was the high point. I was almost done mopping and I ended up dumping over the entire mop bucket. A gallon and a half of dirty water all over. I snapped a picture so you could see me in all my glory!

It took me another hour or so to get up all of the dirty water and to mop all over again. Such is life! Don't get me wrong, it is nice having all this stuff to do on your day off. There is a definite lack of things to do here and what there is to do cost way too much. So, please, don't picture me just sitting back on vacation.

Love you!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Day 49: Get Fit?

Dear Family-

I was doing some research in to working exercise in to my daily life and came across this gem. Yes, Wii Kung Fu is touted as exercise disguised as fun. Excuse me? Pots falling on your head because you are too lame to follow the movements is fun? I haven't heard much about the Wii since I left. Are you guys still using it? Are you still having fun?

Love you!