Sunday, September 30, 2007

Happy Birthday TODAY Art

cute myspace layouts

Saturday, September 29, 2007

A letter from Iraq

This email is from a guy I graduated with. He is in the war over in Iraq and we have been writing to each other for a few days. I suggested I would like to send him a care package and asked what he wanted. Below is his response. I plan to collect some of these things over the next few days and thought if any of you had any DVDs you didn't want anymore maybe you could get them to me and we could include them. As you read, you will see he mentions some scary ones for the Halloween season, of course, I do not have any of these, so if you do, let me know! I know we are all into thrift store shopping and thought just how much the "one man's junk is another man's treasure" saying applies in this instance. How much "junk" do we take for granted that might really make a difference in this soldier's life.

I have also sent an email to Nathan asking what he might be missing already and what he would like. I really think we should all plan to pitch in and send him something at least once a month. Maybe we could rotate who's turn it is to pack and mail it each month or if no one else wants the responsibility, I will take it to make sure it gets done.

Below is Erick's email - he is from Hendersonville and has a wife and three children who live in Augusta, Ga.

In a message dated 9/29/2007 3:16:02 PM Eastern Daylight Time, erick.kramer@iraq.centcom.mil writes:

Paula,

Sounds like you see a lot of the old gang. Sounds like everyone is doing well.

As for the Care package: send me some Halloween junk. Looking for a some scary masks and costumes for people to have a party. DVDs of new/old/scary...We watch almost anything over here if we get the chance. Nice break to sit and watch a movie every now and then. I can't believe how many people I remember from the list. Wow-brings back a lot of memories. I can't wait to get back next year to see the gang. We will have to get together and have a picnic at a park and celebrate. Sounds like it could be fun. I am not sure where I will be next year, however the thought is good for now. Hard to plan some things with the war going on. We had a couple of rockets the other day and almost took out a lot of people. Too close for comfort. You guessed right-Hard to explain this place unless you have been here. There is nothing to compare it to, except video games, and when your time runs out-Game Over. We have a pretty tight group of Nurses and Doctors in the hospital. We all kid around and joke and play games during the down time. People say there is a time to get serious and in between lets have a little fun. ER gives guitar lessons and we play the occasion poker and drink "Neer Beer". I think a lot of us need to join (NAA) Non-Alcoholics Anonymous (Ha-Ha). We have been ordering some stuff from "Michaels" Spooky Town collection to build a village. Bad thing ordering online it takes a while to get here. If you want to send some movies or anything, I am sure we would all appreciate it. That is for sure, mail is the highlite of the day. You either walk away excited or depressed you didn't get anything. If we see someone not getting mail-we will usually mail them something from a care package and resend it to him/her. Makes them feel good. You would be surprised how people go crazy over getting some things. It's kind of like X-Mas. Great Moral Booster........Again, no place to shop except on-line over here. No restaurants or places to go. Surrounded by T-Walls, Wire, and of Course off limits. A lot of check points, and guards everywhere. At least it is cooling off at night a little. Well, I am sure I have put you to sleep now, so I will let you go. Talk to you soon.

Thanks for the Support.

MSG Erick Kramer
Chief WardMaster
31st Combat Support Hospital

Happy Birthday, Art



Taken tonight at Art's birthday party - we had tons of seafood and lots of laughs. Hope his real birthday on Sunday is just as special! We love you!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Not as bad as I thought

I had my eyes examined yesterday and according to the doctor, I have astigmatism and farsightedness yet somehow I still manage to have 20/15 vision. He says I probably put a lot of strain on my eyes to accomplish it but nonetheless it is still very good vision. He recommended reading glasses or progressive lenses so when I need them to read and then I look up I don't have to take them off. Sounded like a great idea ... until they priced them at $302 (and that was with FREE frames!) Holy cow! My insurance policy allows for a $10 copay in three catergories: exam, lenses, and frames. The exam is fully covered for the $10; I pay $10 for any frames up to $130 and then get 20% Off any amount that goes over; and $10 for basic lenses. Well I picked a really pretty pair of Saks 5th Avenue lenses and they were going to be free so I am thinking, "Cool, they seem a lot sturdier than the last ones I had." Then it came to the lenses: add in transitions (so they would turn when I went outside); anti-microdial glare or something like that; etching (?); and the Physio progressive lens. All of a sudden they were spitting out numbers like $596 less what the insurance would cover, blah, blah, blah, and I thought, "Nope, don't need them that bad, after all didn't he just say I was 20/15?" I am just not going to pay more than $20 for reading glasses. They took of this and that and finally got down to a plastic no frills progressive lens and it was still going to be $93. I said, "Thank you, but this is not that high on my list of priorities right now, especially not since I already have a prescription pair at home just for reading." Then I promptly left, taking with me those sexy flimsy black 3D looking things they call glasses because my eyes had been pumped with so much dilation drops I could hardly see the car. Sure glad it was overcast!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Matthew's 'Crazy Kid' video

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Matthew took this video at West today of this kid dancing his heart out. It's pretty funny and brave! Matthew said the teacher came out to make him stop and he started yelling about his rights and they made him go inside. I really don't understand why they would be that way... it was after school in the car rider line so what was the harm? Sometimes it seems like our kids are in prison instead of school. Why stifle his creativity if it's not hurting anyone?

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Some people ....

Are just never satisfied. Excuse me while I vent. I just hate it when someone is so picky about what they want and when they get it they still find some way to find something wrong with it. Especially if it works just not exactly like you think it should, but it does work. Oh well, you have no idea what I am talking about, but I just had to let it out. Thank you and we now return to our regularly scheduled blogging ...

Tonight we are finally watching last season's final episode of Grey's Anatomy. I can't believe we went all summer without anyone ruining it for us, though I did hear certain rumors and when you read what's happening this year (Burke not returning) it kind of gives part of it away. One thing I had heard was what a jerk McDreamy was and I think I just saw that part. The funny thing is I had it recorded upstairs on the kids DVR for the longest time and never watched, decided to watch it tonight thinking that would be better than recording and watching it later, and now I have to leave in about 15 minutes to go pick up Matthew. So looks like I will still be watching the recorded version!

Are any of you out there fans of Grey's Anatomy? We've loved it since it first came on so we are really looking forward to next Thursday night when it starts again. How about you, are there any TV shows you just can't miss? Are there any new shows you've read about and can't wait to see?

Last night we watched the new show, Back to You, with Kelsey Graham and Patricia Heaton (from Cheers and Everybody Loves Raymond.) It was just okay. Maybe it'll be better next week.

Well, Matter just text me, he's done, gotta run. Nighty night.

Do you know what this is?



Eye Glasses! Yes, today, while I was out sick with strep throat I took the opportunity to find an eye doctor who accepts my really good insurance. Turns out Drs. Cannon and Kilgo next to Eckerds (now RITEAID) just started accepting it. So I made an appointment for Friday morning, which I hope means that I will be able to see what I am typing here by the end of next week when they have finished my new glasses. I am assuming they will tell me I need new glasses as my eyesight is getting really lousy!

Well, feeling a bit better and heading off to sleeply land. Night night.

BTW, this is two nights I have blogged and actually called my mother on her cell phone and talked for at least 30 minutes last night. Nothing like parents responding to your blog to put the guilts into you! Haha, not really, enjoyed talking to you, mom - :)

Monday, September 17, 2007

Nothing Much Today ... But hope you enjoy the video

Nothing much happened today, but some people (ART) insist that I write something each day. So today I decided I would share with you one the emails he sent us yesterday about what "love" is. The email was full of quotes by very young children and this one was my favorite:

"When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different. You just know that your name is safe in their mouth."

The quote reminds me of one of the songs Frank sings to me, "It's Your Love," by Tim McGraw.



This just has to be one of my favorite songs. Hope you enjoy.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

A Visit from Smokey the Bear

Today has been just full of highlights starting with 5 loads of laundry in my attempt to start packing for Jamaica and culminating with delicious smoked barbecue ribs homemade by Chef Frank.

In between, there was the visit by the fire department - 3 huge engines, as well as Frank's volunteer firefighter supervisor - because some neighbors and a couple driving by from New York decided our house must certainly be on fire. Why else would there be so much smoke? Well, when Frank smokes ribs - he really smokes ribs!

You know what the funniest thing is? For all the times when I am just trying to steam something in my kitchen and the fire alarm goes off, this time the yard and the house were filled with smoke (and firemen) and the alarm was quiet as a mouse! Go figure!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Happy Birthday Harmony

It was 4 years ago today, the day after we got back from Jamaica that our little Harmony was born. She has been the light of our lives ever since. Hope you enjoy this little video celebrating the day she was born. (The video was part of a cd I made for Art for Christmas a couple of years ago.)

video