Friday, April 25, 2008

How To Sort Of Fix A Broken Toilet

As a wife to a part time soldier, I've had to learn to deal with things that I would usually turn over to him. Like super clogged toilets, dog poop on kids shoes, a bat upstairs hanging on the wall. You know, the husband jobs around the house.

So, when the toilet handle suddenly stopped working a few days ago, I took the lid off the tank and told the kids, just pull that lever, you don't even have to get your hands wet. That worked for about four flushes before the white lever broke too.

Frankly, I do not have time in the week to go to the hardware store to find a new handle, so I improvised. I found a really long shoe lace and tied it onto the white lever. Now when you want to flush, you just pull the shoe lace up, and it's all good.

It's working just fine and I have to keep reminding myself, this is a short term fix. It can not wait six weeks until my husband is home.

Or can it?

Just j-king you. I can't live with the tiolet like this. It's a little too white trash even for me!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

That's How We Roll

If you are packing up to move, or let's say, you've suddenly become insane and are going to refinish the wood floors in your dining room and living room and need to pack up your books so they won't get dusty, everyone knows where the best boxes can be found, right?

The liquor store. The boxes are not too big, not too small, and you aren't going to make any too heavy to carry. They are perfect. As long as you don't care if all your boxes proudly proclaim the name of various types of booze, it's all good.

I've assumed that everyone knows this, but I'm beginning to think that's not the case. With the amount of teasing we get from friends who helped us move, or my sister move, it's becoming clear that not everyone goes to the liquor store for boxes.

Shocking, I know. Where else would you go for free boxes? The grocery store? Gross! I've seen some banana boxes and there is no way I want my books in that.

I'll stick to the liquor store. That's how we roll in Arlington!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Tattoos....I Have A Few...Okay Five

I love tattoos. I may not look like a regular tattoo junkie, but I am. Kind of! I don't want a full back or a sleeve, but I do love getting a tattoo.

My first one was planned for years. My sister and I both said we were getting one, and then life rolls on and we hadn't done it. It was getting embarrassing! We were not all talk, we really wanted to get a tattoo!

About two years ago, we did it. She called and made the appointments, and we went in. Two blue eyed girls who giggled and joked and had never gotten tattoos before, and the artist could tell! I went first and had a botanical drawing of a buttercup done in black ink and shades of gray on my left ankle. I loved it! It wasn't too bad pain wise and as soon as I was done, I was ready and wanting another tattoo!My sister got a big bee on her lower back, and she said it was very painful! I mentally blew a raspberry and thought she was a whiner, it wasn't that bad really. Then we are done, and everyone who sees her tattoo says a lower back one is terribly painful. Okay, I'm in. I'm doing something there. I have to! Anything she can do, I can do also!! I don't know what, but since I'm not getting another tattoo right away, I can think about it. My sister says no way. She's done!

Fast forward to now, and I really want a tattoo. I want two actually, and if I'm paying a base price for the whole hour, I might as well get them both done! On the back of my right shoulder I want a line from a book I read to my kids a million times when they were little, along with their initials and a crescent moon. On my left shoulder, I want my initials with my husbands with a neat little flower swirly design. Once again, my sister makes my appointment! We leave our kids with her husband and go to the same place. This time I have the visiting artist and he is so cool! He likes my tattoos, he keeps the crescent moon I drew, and he all around makes us laugh. We had a great time! It was painful, but still, I got up from having them done and was ready for more!

My wonderful sister calls down to the shop and asks how long our tattoo guy will be there. Only a few more days! Yikes! I instantly decide I want him to do my lower back one, and as I'm dreaming (literally dreaming every night) of tattoos, I know what I want as a second one. He works us in and I go first with my lower back one.

Okay, I'll admit it. My sister was not being a baby! That sucker hurt like I couldn't believe! It was about 45 minutes of pretty painful stuff, but when he was done, it's awesome. My thistle is a work of art! But, this was the first time I finished a tattoo and did not immediately want another one, and that was just too darn bad, since my right ankle was up for the last tattoo!
I knew my ankle would be easy, it was just my maiden name, in honor our dad, and I wanted it, but I was so glad when it was done in three minutes and then I could sit back and relax. I did it! In ten days I had gone from one tattoo, to three tattoos, to a lovely and wonderful five. I might be done.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Can You Say Emma?

As previously mentioned, I love my dog Emma. I think she's just the most perfectly perfect Beagle ever.

She has a fan in my just turned one year old nephew. He loves her too! He brings her toys to play with, but she won't rough house with him. I'm afraid she's jealous of the times he has been held by me.

A few months ago, when he was spending the night, I had a sudden inspiration! Emma is a very easy word to say. Very easy! Very similar to most baby's first word of "mama".....

So began my diabolical plan. Pure evil genius if you will! I would softly say "Emma, Emma, Emma" to him as we played, when we let Emma outside, when she begged for food at the table.

I told his mom I was whispering it to him as he slept, my version of subliminal messages. I didn't really. That might have woken him up and frankly, everyone knows to leave sleeping babies or dogs alone!

Even without any whispered night time messages, it worked. It really worked. His first word is officially "Emma" and he uses it when he sees other dogs. It turns out, it doesn't just mean her. I don't care, I'll take it as a win!

I did feel a little guilty. I really did! His first word could have been mama, but I ruined that. Oh well. Look out 3 month old nephew...I'm working on Emma as your first word too. Turns out, I'm about 75% evil....I can't resist!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Send Me The Pillow That You Dream On

My husband has fallen down on his letter writing to me. I understand, he is very busy doing secret squirrel stuff, but I still would like to get something in the mail.

Today, as the mailman pulled away, my son came in with the mail, waving a "we tried to deliver a package" note. I knew, I just positively knew it was something from my husband. My son willingly ran down the block and caught up with our mailman to get our box. He ran it back to me, and I could not wait to open it.

First, I open the letter to the kids and we go over every thing he has sent them: marshal star pins, dog tags from the chaplain, cigar tins, t-shirts. I see things in the box I know are mine: an insulated coffee mug, a shot glass, a Ziploc baggie of sea glass. But it's the teddy bear that has me stumped. Are the kids to share it? He didn't mention it in his letter to them.

I spill my sea glass across the table, touching every piece knowing he picked up each piece himself, walking the beach thinking of me. I arrange them in a dish on the table so I can look at them every day. Then I settle in to read my letter. The first two pages don't mention the bear, but they mention everything else. I'm really curious about the bear.

Turn to the last page, and as I read it, I could feel tears starting to burn my eyes. He bought the bear a week before he sent the box, and slept with it every night. He thought I might like to sleep with it, kind of like a connection to him. He got the idea after hearing a song that says, "send me the pillow that you dream on...."

He couldn't send his pillow, but he did the next best thing.

And yes, absolutely, the bear is sleeping with me. It is a connection to him. He had this close to him, and now I can hold it close to me. It's the best I can do, and after all these months apart, it is pretty darn good.

The bear and I retired to my room immediately, to cry a little, and to write letter number 87 to my husband. Four months and thousands of miles have not changed how he absolutely knows just the thing to do that will make me fall more in love with him.

Emma, move over a smidge. We've got a new nighttime companion. I think you'll like him, he smells just like Dad.