Thursday, July 30, 2009

God Bless our Troops - "Why I love Marines and Americans"

BFC's hubby (retired Marine colonel) had this posted on his FB today. I loved it and with his permission have done a copy and paste. No changes made to his original text.

Outnumbered 8 - 1: 'A good day for the Corps' By Peter Bronson

"Our vehicles came under a barrage of enemy RPGs (rocket propelled grenades) and machine gun fire. One of our humvees was disabled from RPG fire, and the Marines inside dismounted and laid down suppression fire so they could evacuate a Marine who was knocked unconscious from the blast." That's
not from an episode of The Unit or 24. It's not from an anti-war movie. It's not from any newspaper or TV news reports I could find.

The quote comes from a "designated marksman who requested to remain unidentified." He was reporting what happened recently in the city of Shewan, Afghanistan. The story was told in a Marine Corps News report by Cpl. James M. Mercure. It will give you goose bumps and make you want to stand up and salute the nearest flag. Here's more, because it's a lot better than anything I could write today:

"The day started out with a 10-kilometer patrol with elements mounted and dismounted, so by the time we got to Shewan, we were pretty beat,"the marksman said. Mercure reported, "Shewan had been a thorn in the side of Task Force 2d Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force Afghanistan throughout the Marines' deployment here in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, because it controls an important supply route into the Bala Baluk district. Opening the route was key to continuing combat operations in the area."

"The vicious attack that left the humvee destroyed and several of the Marines pinned down in the kill zone sparked an intense eight-hour battle as the platoon desperately fought to recover their comrades. After recovering the Marines trapped in the kill zone, another platoon sergeant personally led numerous attacks on enemy fortified positions while the platoon fought house to house and trench to trench in order to clear through the enemy ambush site.

"The biggest thing to take from that day is what Marines can accomplish when they're given the opportunity to fight," the sniper said. "A small group of Marines met a numerically superior force and embarrassed them in their own backyard. The insurgents told the townspeople that they were stronger
than the Americans, and that day we showed them they were wrong."

"During the battle, the designated marksman single handedly thwarted a company-sized enemy RPG and machinegun ambush by reportedly killing 20 enemy fighters with his devastatingly accurate precision fire. He selflessly exposed himself time and again to intense enemy fire during a critical point in the eight-hour battle for Shewan in order to kill any enemy combatants who attempted to engage or maneuver on the Marines in the kill zone. What made his actions even more impressive was the fact that he didn't miss any shots, despite the enemies' rounds impacting within a foot of his fighting position. "I was in my own little world," the young corporal said. "I wasn't even aware of a lot of the rounds impacting near my position, because I was concentrating so hard on making sure my rounds were on target."

After calling for close-air support, the small group of Marines pushed forward and broke the enemies' spirit as many of them dropped their weapons and fled the battlefield. At the end of the battle, the Marines had reduced an enemy stronghold, killed more than 50 insurgents and wounded several
more. "I didn't realize how many bad guys there were until we had broken through the enemies' lines and forced them to retreat. It was roughly 250 insurgents against 30 of us," the corporal said. "It was a good day for the Marine Corps. We killed a lot of bad guys, and none of our guys were seriously injured."

Such an amazing story of heroism and victory would have been on Page One in every paper in the country during World War II. Just 30 Marines giving eight hours of hell to 250 insurgents is the kind of story that would make a good movie -- if that kind of movie still could be made.

But these days, it did not even make Page 10. I couldn't find a story about it anywhere. The only mentions were on conservative blogs and military Web sites. The soldiers who are fighting for their lives and our country might as well be in another dimension. News from the battlefronts in Iraq and
Afghanistan is apparently not important. It reminds the jaded anti-war crowd that they were wrong. We're winning. It reminds a self-centered nation that some Americans are making sacrifices much bigger than a loss in their 401(k)s.

So we don't hear about it.

But we need to hear news like that, because a good day for the Marine Corps is a good day for freedom. And that's a good day for America.

I am proud and grateful to you Colonel R and all who have served with you, serve now and will proudly serve in the future!
For the record, I am certainly not front page news, just a little ole blog. But anytime I learn of something like this, it's getting space on my blog. Any time.


Thankful Thursday

Things that I am thankful for this week:

Movie Theater popcorn. Why does it taste different? Better?
No butter, no extra salt, just straight out of the popper. Mmmmmm, makes me happy.

Artificial tears. Yes, I do try to garner some sympathy by pulling the 'ole fake cry.....okay NOT. But Lasik does cause some dryness that would make me crazy if it wasn't for my Refresh brand artificial tears. And since I can use them as often as I want, I have an ever present bottle at the ready all.the.time.

Central Air. We had a swamp cooler for so many years, and I never really thought about it until we got the air a couple years ago and now, I would never go back. It is a delight to walk into the house and get some cool refreshment after being out in the heat. Of course, with me, that lasts about 5 minutes and then I'm looking for a blankie.

Early morning bike rides. Being outside at dawn is the best. Really. Whether you are running or cycling, the summer air, noises and watching the sun rise are all spectacular things. Maybe that's another reason why I love summer so much. You don't get these mornings in the winter.

That I found her. I know, I know! I am the last person on the earth to have started reading and following her blog. I don't know how I didn't find her before now. But I have spent some significant time blurking over there, reading her current posts and her archives. She is an amazing and inspiring woman. Every time she posts, she moves me to tears. Tears of humility and gratitude for my blessings and tears of angst for her and her situation. I would tell you to go check her out, but I don't need to. You already read her. But if by chance you have been under a rock, go here. You will be glad you did.

What are you thankful for?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I like to ride Mom's bicycle, I like to ride her bike....

Yes, this is similar to a baby sling for newborns

Yes, she went on a bike ride with me this morning to the Sev

Yes, I am that weird

Yes, now I have that stupid Queen song in my head. And now, so do you

Wednesday Wrandom Wrambling's

There's so much rattling around my head I can hardly stand it. Even with my nigh-nigh-sleep-tight pill, I'm not sleeping. What's up with that?

I have a huge confession to make. Monday, I worked from the hospital rather than my office. I was conferenced in for staff meeting though. So, here I am on my cell phone listening and participating when necessary. It starts dragging on a bit. I have gulped down over half a gallon of water. You know what comes next. I try to hold it thinking we are gonna wrap up any time. Nope it just goes on and on. I can't hold it any longer. I work by way to the bathroom, and since I don't know how to mute on my cell, I cover the mouthpiece while I take care of business. Just as I am getting ready to flush, I am asked to go ahead and give my update for the week.
Me: "Huh? Me? Wha? Uhhhhh......."
Giggler: "You're echoing."
Me: (frantic) "Um, just come back to me, give me a sec"
I go back to covering the mouthpiece and finish up FAST, praying that they don't hear the flush! I don't think until now, anyone knew. Or they all knew that I was totally squatting during staff and they are all secretly laughing behind my back. Wait, they don't laugh behind my back. They OPENLY laugh at me.

For the record I don't talk on the cell phone while in the bathroom. Unless you are family or the Shark.

Why is it that when one thing goes wrong a billion other things have to start falling apart too? Broken microwave, leaking dishwasher, sick dog, and now Splenda's company. The economy is killing us all I tell ya!

The war is beginning to escalate between my son and the the YW with all the chalking and water ballooning and now perhaps some oreo'ing happening. I have taught him well. They started it, and I should have warned them that "you don't mess with the best, case the best don't mess." It's getting interesting. Good thing school starts next month : )

Speaking of school. Tuffy is my last one. He's a senior. WTC! Where does time go and what happened in the last 22 years? I feel it's all a big blur. I wish I would have started blogging back then. At least I would have documentation of both the good and the bad times. Oh wait, Gore hadn't invented the Internet yet *snicker snicker* If your kids are little, I know it's cliche but it's true, freaking enjoy every single stage. You NEVER get it back. And before you know it, it's gone. Like a fart in your hand........

I still have a marathon coming up in September. Ask me if I am training for it. Go ahead, ask. NOPE. After working through this last little injury going on, I haven't gotten a long run in. And a long run involves over 13 miles. Nope. I don't know what's going to happen. I might end up walking Top of Utah and finishing in 6.5 hours. But to be truthful, I am afraid to give my legs a long run. I am afraid of re-injurying (is that a word). There, I said it. I'm afraid.

It's almost August. I love August. August is prolly my favorite month. Guess I should update my sidebar calendar and start looking forward to all the fun we have planned.

It's 5:15am. I'm getting ready for a nice long bike ride. If I ride the temple route, can I count that as my temple attendance for the month?

Speaking of the temple. I think I have a couple of nieces that would like to strangle me. We are in the process of doing my Grandmother's work. It's in my court now. It has been for months. I am the hold up. I suck. I need to get that done THIS WEEK! I'm on it Sobrina, I'm on it.

PSA - 'Cause I'm a giver

Normally, I would give you heads up if you are an Obama lover, or a Glenn Beck hater, but today, I don't care where you sit, on which side of any aisle. If you haven't seen this already, you need to watch it, and give it some thought

Fundamentally change. Yes, I think we need some things tweaked, perhaps, even overhauled a bit, but FUNDAMENTALLY the United States is sound.

Please Mr Obama. Don't.go.down.this.path.

**For the love of all that's holy, I can't embed the video, you're gonna have to hit the link. BTW - PSA is a blood test that checks the prostate. Wonder how many google searches will lead here? : )**

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Going under the

My boy's boy is sick. Kasey, Tuffy's beloved Freakshow of a Golden Retriever dog, has an owie.
We found this on him last week.It showed up just out of the blue. One day, just there.

Our great vet at
Jordan River Animal Hospital did a quick needle aspiration and informed us it was a Mast Cell Tumor. And that there was another small one starting near the big one.

We were advised to watch it for a few days, just in case it was merely an insect bite, but if it didn't rapidly improve, to get it removed ASAP.(one last good chewing session before the big day)

He went yesterday for his blood work, and this morning had surgery.
He breezed through that. Prolly the longest time the dog has ever been mellow and chillaxed. I almost wish I could have stayed through it all just to enjoy it. : )

The bad news: They found another one starting to grow when they were in removing them. That could indicate that it is indeed cancer and is spreading.

The good news: Doc was able to remove them easily, indicative that they haven't gone deep.

Jury is still officially out on a confirmed diagnosis of Mast Cell cancer. But the vet has used the term the entire time, so we're not expecting a miracle. That being said, we'll have the REAL word when the biopsy gets back from the pathologist. Should be by the end of this week.

In the meantime, our baby has an awesome battle wound, is still groggy, pretty quiet and overall a much more sedated Freakshow than we are used to. The dude gets pain meds for the next 5 days. So maybe this laid back version will be around for a little while at least.

And the even better news? He got his teeth cleaned while under so his "all the better to eat you with my dears" are sparkly white!

Poor guy - I don't think he feels like that was a cool deal at all.......

Tickle Me Pink Tuesday

BFC sent me this email and I laughed. Out loud. It still makes me giggle.

Apparently the American Medical Association has weighed in on the new economic stimulus package.

The Allergists voted to scratch it, but the Dermatologists advised not to make any rash moves. The Gastroenterologists had sort of a gut feeling about it but the Neurologists thought the Administration had a lot of nerve.

The Obstetricians felt they were all laboring under a misconception. Ophthalmologists considered the idea shortsighted. Pathologists yelled, "Over my dead body!" while the Pediatricians said,"Oh, Grow Up."
The Psychiatrists thought the whole idea was madness, while the Radiologists could see right through it. Surgeons decided to wash their hands of the whole thing.

The Internists thought it was a bitter pill to swallow, and the Plastic Surgeons said, "This puts a whole new face on the matter."

The Podiatrists thought it was a step backward, but the Urologists were pissed off at the whole idea. The Anesthesiologists thought the whole idea was a gas and the Cardiologists didn't have the heart to say no.

In the end, the Proctologists won out, leaving the entire decision up to the a**holes in Washington

Monday, July 27, 2009

Did someone mention another GIVE AWAY!

The fabulous Mormon Mommy Blogs is having another amazing give away. Seriously, I don't know how they do it. How do they get all these companies to offer up the goods? Having met Motherboard in person, I would imagine all kinds of things that get brokered in the deal. But I digress......and I kid.

Get on over there, check 'em out and start following them if you aren't already. Which would make you a loser......just saying.

You're still here? I said GIT!

Monday Missionary Update


Well I am going to have to start out saying that I am sorry for the email last week. I didnt realize that being a ZL there was that much more work, but there really is. In fact, this week went by really fast, and it looks like this next one will go by even faster. Thanks for the emails guys, I really enjoyed hearing about the cabin and what is going on at home. That is too bad about Kasey, I hope that everything good with the operation.
Well I think that I already told you that my comps name is Elder Cuadra (which means square). He is from Chile and we get along great. He is a great missionary!! Our sector is kinda small, but is really great, there are tons of great familys here. Okay, so to help you guys understand kinda what the job of the ZL is, I will compare it to District Leader. The DL is basicaly a coach who helps the “team” progress. The team is the District. The ZL is to help more the missionaries personaly, and in thier progress. We help the DL in the meetings to improve and to make their meetings better so they can help the “team”. We do 2 inter changes every week, or try to at least to help the missionaries. Also, every transfer, the ZL have to make a Zone Vision which is what we want to happen within our Zone. Goals and planes to be able to complete our vision. Part of the vision that we have here is to help the missionaries improve in teaching and being more obiente, so every Friday, we are calling it Holy Friday, we get together as a Zone to do practice and we capazitate the missionaries. In our Zone there are 6 sectors and 12 missionaires. Sometimes to help missionaries, we do studies with them, We just kinda show ip at their house and we study something of PMG with them, or whatever their need is. The first week we studied with the two DL and this week we are going to a little village called Paillaco to study with the missionaries there. Ill tell you one thing is for sure. Its impossible to worry about ones self as a ZL. All day your thinking about the missionaries in your Zone, and the investigatores. Apart of all this that you do (there is more) we have to be an example with our sector, working the hardest and always helping the missionaries. This is kinda why the other week my email was short.
Things are going great here in the mish. I got 19 months now and I am kinda sad that time is going by. Glad, but sad at the same time. Gives me a motive to work even harder. I will try to get another pic out next week. Sorry guys for losing the Debit Card, I was kinda in a hurry and when I went to take out money, I accidently left the card in the ATM. I hope that it is not too much trouble.
It is very cold here. I am sleeping with two hoodies and sweats. It hasnt rained that much here so that is kinda good. They have here a Mc Donalds and I think that I am going to get a Bic Mac today after using the comp. I am kinda short on money but I think that ends will meet. Well, I guess that they will have to haha. Here is a facebook update:

Bueno, saludos a todos. Quisiera informarles un poco de lo que esta pasando aqui en valdivia. Mi comp is chileno y es de concepcion. El es muy chistoso y nos llevamos muy bien. Estamos trabajando muy duro aqui y esperamos un bautismo en Agosto. Fui llamado comp Lider de Zona y hay mucho trabajo. Hace muchisimo frio aqui y creo a vecez que seria mejor si habia lluvia jaja. Seguramente el tiempo esta pasando muy muy rapido y se que antes que me da cuenta, estaria terminando la mision. Es bien bontio aqui en valdivia y creo que tendria que volver despues de la mission a poder a pasar aqui como vacacion. Alguien me dijo que hay un crusero aqui, y creo que eso seria muy genial a poder a andar en crusero. Eso es!! Gracias a todos!! Les quiero!

Thanks mom and dad for everything that you guys do. Next I am sure that I will have a pic! I love you guys and miss ya !

Elder Catmull


What is going on man??? How is the mission going for a?? Sorry I didnt get a chance to email you back last week, there was tons of stuff to do and I barely had time to write the fam. Thanks for emailing me though dude, I was really glad to get it. Just to give ya an update, I got transfer last week to a new sector called Valdivia. They put me as a ZL with a comp from Chile. We are getting along really great and we are working hard. I am still loving the mish dude I hope that you are too!! DUDE, YOU KNOW THAT WE ARE GOING TO HAVE TO PLAY A GAME OF HALO WHEN WE GET BACK MAN!! When I got your emial I was thinking the same thing. The other day I completed 19 months in the mish man. WOW is time going by fast. It sucks that we wont see eachother for a long time. I havent been working out that much man. I am not very good at all to work out in the mornings... I have kinda been a slacker. And about Jesus the Christ... I havent read it yet, I have read some parts of it and it is amazing, but the whole time, there is no time for me at all to do that. Chris WORK HARD! This is the most important work there is on earth and there is no other work that brings greater satisfaccion. Remember, if we lack happiness in the mission, we lack diligence. If we lack diligence, we lack love for God. Keep up the good work bro and I am looking foward to hearing from ya again!

Elder Catmull

**I also posted his notes to his buddy, only because of the wonderful words of wisdom he included about lacking happiness, lacking diligence, lacking God. Love it!!

Cabin 2009 - High Adventure

**Warning - journaling post - tons of pictures - feel free to skip through. If you're reading through FB- you'll not see the pics or videos anyway.
** Best MIL ever, Grandma Joy, has a cabin east of Heber, in the cabin community of Timberlakes. Favorite spot ever! When I married into the fam, I married gooooooood! We spent our honeymoon there (another post), and have made at least once a year, if not more, jaunts to the secluded Eden.
This year, it was Grandma J, Splenda, myself, Sissy, Tuffy, his bestie B, and C joined us Saturday. Our time at the cabin consists of a lot of time down at the water. To get to the water, you can take the easier path, or the treacherous path. We chose the scary one. Picture me hiking down this steep, virtually non-existent path with a two-year old clinging to my neck saying very calmly "Be careful, be careful". Over and over again. Once we get there, it's soooo worth it. It is gorgeous, and no matter the age of the kid, it's still fun to huck rocks in the water. Sissy was a brave adventurous one and wanted to walk through the creek/stream. I don't know where she gets her gonads, but for a toddler, she is a fun thrill seeker.
There is also a lot of just hanging around the cabin, eating junk food, playing cards, and basically just chillaxing We saw a lot of these Kasey and Jordan were in pure heaven. Water, squirrels, smells galore, and laying around without a care in the world Now, it wasn't completely bliss free. There was a meltdown of epic proportions
This was about 30 minutes into the come-apart, which lasted another 20 minutes or so until she finally relaxed, composed herself and fell asleep. What set off such a tantrum? The driveway down into the cabin is about an 1/8 of a mile. She liked to hike to the top, but then wanted to be carried down. I think a 2 (almost 2 and half) year old can walk themselves. Okay, so my arms were tired too. Sissy, on the other hand, thinks it's perfectly reasonable to be carried wherever and whenever she wants. It was a battle of the wills. It involved a lot of laying on the ground throwing rocks which would end up coming back in her face, thus ticking her off more. Good.Times. But, let's talk about the real reason we go to the cabin. To do a LOT of this: All too soon, it was time to load up, clean up, and head back to the hot city.

One thing we did NOT get enough of was this: