Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Pet Peeves

This is probably my biggest pet peeves, well as far as bloggers go...

If you're going to if you're going to talk about the Marine Corps or the fact that you're a Marine wife, PLEASE make sure you spell and abbreviate the branch correctly. First Marine Corps is ALWAYS capitalized. Marine is ALWAYS capitalized. Also, Marine Corps is spelled M-A-R-I-N-E C-O-R-P-S... This means putting an 'S' at the end of Corps. Marine Corps. NOT Marine Corp... Or Marine Corp's... Just CORPS...

Monday, April 19, 2010

That folded flag

I have a figment of terror in the back of my mind at all times. I usually don't think about it, because the terror is crippling if I allow it to be. I know terror's a strong word, but it's there in a small dose. I'm afraid of the folded flag. I'm afraid of the crisp white dress blues uniform and the starched white hat with the gloves and the shoes, and the face of strength while my world crumbles before me. I run from the dreams in which Marine friends that we have will hold me and I'll be unable to eat by myself, because when your spouse dies, your first reaction isn't "oh well, God's still number one." Your first reaction is "I'm ruined. I have no reason to breathe. How can I possibly continue?" I've seen enough spouses lose service members to know. I'm friends with them and I don't have words for them, because pity doesn't help, words don't help, and silence in times like that are deadly, as if we're afraid of waking the deceased.

I am so beyond terrified of being another widow (not to be confused with a fear of death itself, because I am not afraid of death), pursuing strength as a full time career despite the obvious note that a doctorate in Strength accounts for no higher pay, no holidays, and no sick time. I wrestled with my fear for two deployments, hoping it wouldn't be the beginning of many more to come, rising to and joyfully accepting the challenges that come with being the anchor of the EGA.

The world likes the fearless; the ones with the good stories for headlines from which gossip hungry news anchors can go home to their tv dinner kids with steady paychecks and talk about football. And so the widows try to be fearless, hoping that a false sense of assurance and a quick mona lisa smile might steer them clear of constant crowds, but inside they are empty carcasses, having become fully dependent on what was good and 'easy complaining' the day before when they'd argue at Motomail for being slow, or the flat rate boxes for being just a little too small for their next care package agenda. Deployments drive these motions, and we all secretly anticipate a joyful call from a satelite phone explaining in detail the expressions of the opened goodie box.

Why don't churches teach people how to care for widows? We're all so focused on salvation for the sake of advancing God's kingdom that when a person becomes a widow and salvation needs to come in a package of tenderness, lovingkindness, patience, peace, and comfort, it's as if the world says "Oh we have counseling for that. Do you need dinner though? I'll make you a casserole. Let me get the church office on the phone for you. Oh. It's after hours. We'll have to wait until tomorrow." That's how it must feel to have a world shut its door on you. I think that's how I'll feel when my husband dies. And get this. My husband is saved. He doesn't hear God the way I hear Him, but he does God's will when he hears it, and he's strong. He's my protector. He's my encyclopedia.

It's 2324 and I have no reason to be on this subject except that while I was searching blogs for Marine wives to converse with, I came across A Little Pink in a World of Camo. Can you imagine being a widow for a month and just finally receiving your husband's personal items, including a note you wrote him that he kept in his pocket? The poor girl's got a new baby girl of her own, too, whom her husband wasn't able to meet. KIA is what they call it.

It is wrong for me to feel guilty for having a husband who's alive? I kind of do. I kind of want to take some of her burden, but I can't. She doesn't know I exist. Her blog is all over the internet, along with another blog about a girl who is my age, who divorced her husband, a wounded Marine. I don't know how it got so bad for that to be their best option. She has so many blog entries it's hard to find "the one" that spilled the information.

I think I'd feel like a widow if I divorced. I'm not tempted. Never have been. Some might find that strange after reading some of my darker posts, but the God's honest truth is that I've become so enveloped in my husband's life, I can't even think a complete thought without my husband involved (or God for that matter). How do people do it? Honestly... can a marriage be so bad that you're willing to break the closest relationship you've ever had with someone, the most meaningful, just to say "I stopped loving him" or "it got too bad." I know how naive and ignorant this sounds. Trust me I do. I'm coming from an understanding that marriage is forever. It's not a fad as popular belief would have it be. It's not a contract, as many military marriages are. Yes, I got married in the middle of the woods after writing letters to him for only 2 and a half months, having never met him before, but look at what I've/we've been through together since then, and STILL we want to be together forever?! I think my only conclusion is this: As often as people divorce for the wrong reasons, many people marry for the wrong reasons.

Someday my family might take back the words they spoke to me. "If you marry him now, he's going to go to Iraq, and he's going to die there, and then you'll be a single pregnant mother. Is that what you want?" That's what I was told at my most vulnerable moment. I've forgiven, but I haven't forgotten. I can't. I may need to remind myself of the strength I had to get through that when harder stuff happens. Harder stuff has happened, but I know the hardest is yet to come.

Two powerful blogs are speaking volumes to the world, and here I am as a third eye and humble woman, having no idea how it is that my visitor counter jumps by about 100 every day, hoping that what I say may have an impact in a good way. I wonder what they would think if they read my blog. I wonder what a lot of people think.

It simply breaks my heart to see marriages die. Becoming a widow is one thing, but giving up is another. I want to tell you something. God doesn't give up on people. God doesn't ruin your life. I mean, judgment, yea, He does that, but usually, we ruin our own lives. Don't blame God on a failed marriage. It's not His fault. He offers salvation and you blame Him? He offers peace, He offers love, and He offers comfort, and yet so often we are tempted to run the other way, take the easy and drastically more painful and destructive way out, signing our name on a paper saying "I'm done with you." If God wrote us off that easily, we'd all be going to hell. But He doesn't. Those of you who haven't found that void in your heart that God wants to and can fill won't agree with this, but let me pick on you a bit. What will fill that void? Alcohol? Shopping? Pornography? Social gatherings? Food? Lust? Sex? Money? A new job? A new house? A move? Nothing will fill the void. The answer is nothing. If you want restoration and comfort in the purest and most meaningful and lasting way possible, you'll find it in God through Jesus. I know this. I'm living proof. I didn't have to go through divorce to know it. It's in God's word.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Doctor Who Clotted Cream & Scones

Well I'll be the first to admit I'm a huge dork. I've looked forward to today for the past month or so... Why? Well because of the Doctor Who season premiere of course! HaHa... And with the new Doctor Matt Smith (Yum!) So as I sit here watching the Doctor Who Marathon on BBCA with the even yummier David Tennant <3>figured why not... It's Saturday, I might as well bake... So here ya go, a couple very yummy (not as yummy as Matt and David) vegan recipes...

Lemon Maple Scones
(Makes 12-15 2″ Scones)

2 Cups All- Purpose Flour
2 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Salt
Zest of 1 Lemon
1/3 Cup Earth Balance Margarine
3 Tbs Maple Syrup (or regular sugar)
1/2 Cup Soymilk
2 Tbs Lemon Juice

Clotted Cream
4 Tbs Earth Balance Margarine
4 Tbs Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese
2 Tbs Powdered Sugar

Whisk the ingredients for the clotted cream together. It takes some elbow grease, but it will soon be a thick, smooth cream. Let it sit out to soften a little if needed to ease mixing. Set aside at room temperature; refrigerating will make the cream stiffer.

Preheat oven to 400º F.

Whisk all the dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl (flour through zest). Mix the wet ingredients together (syrup, soymilk and lemon juice). Using a pastry cutter or a fork, blend the Earth Balance into the dry ingredients until there are no chunks of margarine left and the mixture looks like damp sand.

Pour in the wet ingredients and mix with your hands to form a soft dough. Only mix until just combined, adding more flour if the mixture is too wet. Turn out the dough onto a floured surface and roll out to a slab 3/4″ thick. Using a biscuit cutter or a glass with about a 2″ diameter, cut out your scones. Press the scraps of dough together, roll out again, and continue cutting scones until you’ve used up your dough.

Transfer scones to a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper, or a non-stick mat. Brush the tops with a mixture of soymilk, powdered sugar and lemon juice.

Bake at 400º F for 12-15 minutes. If the scones aren’t lightly brown after 15 minutes, transfer to the broiler for 1-2 minutes, watching carefully, to brown the tops if desired. Remove to a cooling rack.

While still warm, split and slather each side with clotted cream. Add berries or jam to the top and serve with your favorite tea.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Tricare Dental sponsors kids prize giveaway

By Karen Jowers - Staff writer, marinecorpstimes.com

Children of active-duty, National Guard and reserve service members are eligible for a prize giveaway if they are enrolled in the Tricare Dental Program. Parents or guardians must submit entries for their children by midnight Eastern Time on April 29. Sixty winners from different age groups up to age 17 will be selected in a random drawing May 27.

To celebrate April as Month of the Military Child, United Concordia, administrator of the Tricare Dental Program, is sponsoring the prizes — gift certificates worth up to $300, which can be used at any of the services’ military exchanges.

Three winners will be named in each of four age groups —0-4, 5-9, 10-14, and 15-17. First-place winners receive $300; second, $150; and third, $50. Those 12 winners will be chosen in each Tricare region: North, South and West regions in the U.S., and the Tricare Eurasia-Africa, and Latin America and Canada regions overseas.

One entry is allowed per child.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Email of the day

I got a really... Umm... I guess, weird (for lack of a better word) email from someone the other day.

Hi, my name is "Jane"
[name has been changed] and I'm 18 years old and getting ready to graduate high school. I have been reading your blog for about a year and was wondering how I can become a marine wife. I know the obvious answer is to marry a marine but it's just not that easy. I have to find a marine first and i don't know how to do that. Any advice you could give me would really help. Please and thank you. -"Jane"

::Sigh:: I don't even know how to respond to this. This kinda thinking just makes me sad. It's this kinda thinking that gives Marine Wives bad raps. It's this kinda thinking that breeds Rack Rats and Barracks Bunny. Hunny, this kinda thinking makes you a "tag chaser". Trust me, that's no term of endearment...

Monday, April 5, 2010

I've seen the comercials on TV and have been so interested in trying it. We only drink Silk SoyMilk here and I was so looking forward to trying Silk's Almond Milk... Only one problem... IT'S HARD TO FIND! Seriously, I keep looking for it in our Walmart Market and Fool Lion and have had no such luck... Well until today. I found out that our Target Market JUST started stocking them this week... And I bought their last one. I rished home and had to try it and might I say it's a cup for of awesomeness! Seriously, if you're lucky enought to find a store that stocks Silk's Almond Milk, you should really buy a gallon to try.

If that's not enough, Silk's also offering a 75 cent off coupon on their website.

Besides the great taste, and a great deal... Almond Milk's like way healthy for you.

Almonds are full of antioxidants
Almonds are a great source of Vitamin E, protein and fiber
A Glass of Silk Pure Almond provides as much calcium as a glass of dairy milk
A Glass of Silk Pure Almond provides as much Vitamin D as a glass of dairy milk
A Glass of Silk Pure Almond has no cholestrol or saturated fat.
Almond milk is a perfect alternative for lactose intolerant folks
A Glass of Silk Pure Almond is only 60 calories!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Inappropriate Flattery

So I took my little one to the Bass Pro Shop to see the Easter Bunny today and they had some Easter crafts going on and she wanted to do that. So we go... We see the Easter Bunny... We go to the craft table and I'm bending down helping her glue stuff and after 10 or so minutes, my husband walks up behind me and informs me that the father standing on the other side of the table has been going out of his way trying to look down my shirt. Ok, well sucks for him, cuz even though I was wearing a loose fitting "hippy top", as my husband calls it, I had a tank top on underneath that covered the little chest I have... But is it sad that this form of inappropriate behavior actually flattered me? HaHa. I might not actually feel the same way had I not been wearing a tank-top under my shirt... I guess it just makes me feel better knowing someone actually wants to see my goods. HaHa.