Tuesday, November 29, 2005

How Do I Tell Liberals to F off on a PG Rated Blog?

OK... I need help from anyone that reads my blog. We have another discouraged soldier on our hands and I believe it is my responsibility to change that. I am asking you to do 3 simple things: 1) Read the email below 2) Leave a comment for this soldier offering words of encouragement- I'll make sure he gets a copy or gets connected to this blog 3) Refer 1 person here and have them do steps 1 and 2 also.

I am so sick and tired of these men and women having to deal with this sort of shit!!! They need to know that we are behind them, that we support them and we support their mission. Please, give this man and those he stands with some words of encouragement. Thanks. -C

From: Michael
To: Tom
Subject: Your Package
Date: Sat, 26 Nov 2005 11:47:03 +0000

Hello Tom,

I received your latest package a few days ago. Great! Excellent! More stuff I can use and enjoy. I appreciate it. I'm glad you and the fellers are keeping up with your support. Hell, we need more Americans like the patriots of your rod & gun club, sure! Yes, many Americans,
nay, most Americans are opposed to this war. I've heard as much. It bothers me. Personally, I believe we should be here. Hell, if we don't do anything about terrorism, who will? Iraq is the heart of terrorism, and us soldiers must pluck out the heart in one fell swoop. I agree that America should be waging this war but, from my point of view, the thing I don't agree with is the manner in which we are doing it. Mind you, I'm only seeing this from my own perspective, but I think the tactics we are using have got to change; they are killing us. If we are going to win, we must change our battle tactics. Anyway, I had a wee bit of free time (believe it or not), and I thought I'd go through my e-mails, answer some, as well as read 'em. Stay in touch, Tom. Thanks for being an ardent, patriotic supporter. I may be back in Ohio sometime in late February/early March.


Then Tom forwarded this email:

From: Tom
Sent: Saturday, November 26, 2005 8:04 PM

Kim, Kyle, and everybody,
(for those who don't know Mike XXXXX - he's a soldier stationed in Baghdad, Iraq.)
Here's my latest from Mike. I took exception with his statement (see below) about most Americans being opposed to the war and sent a response to him that said "I don't know who you heard that from, but it's bullshit". I refuse to believe that most Americans, or even many
Americans, or even more than a few short sighted people who happen to live here, are against the war on terrorism. I told him I was old enough to remember the Johnson and Nixon eras where there was a lot of dissention on the war - but I believe that's not the case today. I also told him to tell his buddies what I said. I think he needs a little support from lots of people. As I understand it, mail to soldiers in Iraq is free. I think it would be great for him to receive a ton of letters that tell him we believe in what he and his comrades are doing and that we support them 100%. Can you imagine those guys reading a letter that goes something like this:
"I understand that you think most of us are not behind you, praying for you, believing in you. Well, I don't know where you got that idea, but it's wrong. We remember 9/11. We saw what happened in Spain. We don't expect to sit around and wait for that to happen again. We expect the most powerful military in the history of the world and all members of the coalition to solve this problem for us. So, please, quit whining and get back to work - and remember, we all love you." Or, whatever words of support you can come up with. These guy need a HUGE cheering section. If you think this is worthy to pass on, do it. Mike's address is:

For obvious reasons I have removed the address. Please leave a comment and I'll make sure Mike gets it.

For those of you that know me and would like to send a card, please drop me a note or call me and I'll give you Mike's address.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Chop Chop Hurry Hurry Quick Quick Stop... for just a minute

Sunny Hi 76 Lo 54 for Baghdad, Iraq
Rainy Hi 60 Lo 54 for Northern KY, USA

Song of the week: Clocks, Coldplay

Now that Thanksgiving is behind us, we are now into the the fast paced Christmas Season. How many of you went out Friday and faced the crowds? Not I said the cat... actually, I did quite a bit of shopping on line.... love it... Saturday, I spent the day with my niece... Monday is her mom's 40th, so we shopped all afternoon for just the right gift. Tonight we are all going to Montgomery Inn for dinner.

Take time during this Christmas season to enjoy it. At the bottom of this post are some of our favorite movies to watch this time of year. Michael and I will eventually watch all of them. Can you name them? Special prize for the person that names them all...

Michael and I need to start putting up our Christmas decorations... so this is it for today's post... Spend some time with these folks:

I guess I'm way behind, but I will go on the assumption that some of you may have not been familiar with this blogger or his story either. The blog - In the Red Zone, the blogger - Steven Vincent. I didn't put this together with the guy I read in National Review... He was murdered in Iraq. My intention is to read this blog in full. Maybe you will do the same...

Spiced Sass ---I'm not quite sure if this is 1 person with multiple personalities or 1 blog with 3 bloggers or some combination in between- Actually, I'm not sure if this is even the correct name for this blog... I DO know that I intend to read the archives- seems to me I have found another soul that is supportive our military... that gets my attention- an incredibly nice and well written blog. They were kind enough to link to my blog... and besides they are from Cincinnati! Who knew? Go Bengals!

Spend time with Phil at Camp Katrina. He has expanded the blog to share good news from Iraq. Besides he is a cutie. I know he is in Ohio....not sure if he is a native Ohioan...

Another cutie is Matt at Lag in Iraq. Matt is over in the "sandbox" so it will be interesting to watch and read and see how his blog develops. Someone to keep in our prayers.

Ellen over at The Reign of Ellen has been bringing a smile to my face for quite some time. Honestly, I forgot about her and in my search to look for blogs to bring a smile to my face... well... she is sunshine...

Lastly, if you haven't done so, please read my post from Friday... Final Thoughts from a Soldier in Mosul. This is a powerful letter expressing one soldier's opinion of the war.

OK... Name 'em!!

Posted by Picasa
Have a great week everyone! I'll see you next Sunday (maybe sooner if something comes up...)

Friday, November 25, 2005

Another must read

I ask you to go visit Ron. I missed his Thanksgiving post yesterday.... but it is still timely and quite moving.

Final Thoughts from a Soldier in Mosul - A Must Read

I received this email last night. It wasn't until this morning that I read it... then read it again. I have not received permission from this soldier to include his name. I will add it later if he so chooses. The following email is printed in it's entirety. When I start to get uptight over the hustle and bustle of the holidays... I will remind myself of this man and the countless others that are doing their job and keeping me safe.

Please note: emphasis added

Sent: Thu 11/24/2005 5:01 PM

Hello everybody, this is Sgt. XXXXXX from Mosul, Iraq again. After sending out my thank you letter, many people wrote back and asked that I try to send out updates on my progress in Iraq, some even suggested that I start my own blog. Well, time didn’t allow me to start my own blog, but as my deployment comes to an end, I thought I would write a final letter on my thoughts, and let everybody know that I made it through o.k..
The hot summer days and nights seem to have come to an end, and the days are now growing cooler as fall begins to sweep her hand over Northern Iraq. In a little over a month or so, I will be sitting on a plane headed back to the states, slowly leaving Iraq behind me with only my pictures, thoughts and memories to take with me. Even as I begin to pack it hasn’t set in that I am finally leaving this place that I have come to know with both hate and love so well.
This experience has been, and will no doubt be the most challenging of my life. When I first arrived here, I really wanted to hate this place. Try as I might, I found it impossible to hate Iraq. Although there is no place like the United States, Iraq is as beautiful a country as any. Sometimes you might have to look a little beyond the surface to find the beauty in it, but I assure you, it is there. There is no more an awe inspiring sight than that of an Iraqi night. While in the city of Tall Afar for a few days, I sat outside my “hooch” under the night sky and listened to the sound of 155mm Howitzers keep a thundering cadence on a distant target, and watched as a countless number of shooting stars passed over head. Under that same moon I have contemplated what my loved ones back home were doing at that very time; have had many great conversations with my fellow Soldiers; and let the lingering thoughts from the day pass out of my mind before I would go to sleep. And at times, it seems that Iraq had literally sucked all life from my body. There have been times that I felt that I was little more than a walking zombie.
The history and culture of Iraq has much to give to the world. I have found the Iraqi’s to be kind, loving, gentle and extremely resourceful. I feel that we have as much to gain from their friendship as they have to gain from ours. It seems to me that most Iraqi’s want nothing more than what the average American wishes for. A family to love, a home to come to at the end of the day, and most of all, the freedom that we all enjoy and love. It is my most sincere hope that they all get this and more.
As for the war itself, it is hard to put my thoughts and feelings into words, but will try to do my best. After a year of participation and observation, I can only say that war is horrible. Perhaps the most horrible of all actions. It’s not an adventure, or a right of passage. It’s visceral and evil. Carnage and violence at it’s worst. It is a place where one man willingly dispatches the life of another, lest that fate come to him. It is the only place where the amount of blood shed in the street is the measure by which you can judge success. It is not a movie that you can watch abstractly from the comfort of a theater seat. It is very real. It is a place where people die, and their loved ones are left heartbroken. At times it seems to be a living breathing entity. The most horrible monster you can imagine. It has no rhyme or reason, it just is. There is no point in trying to make sense of it, because there is no sense to be found in it. Yet, even through all of this, we have brave men and women who continue to charge into battle, and fight for all they can so others unknown to them may gain something from it.
Horrible as it is, it is a necessary evil. After a year, I still hold firm in my opinion that we are doing the right thing in Iraq. I don’t want you to mistake me for a warmonger, because that is as far from the truth as could be. I don’t believe there is a Soldier who is currently serving that is happy they are serving in a war. Don’t mistake pride of service for your country and your fellow man for joy of war. It is not the same. Believe me, the battles that are won here every day are not known to any human outside of the borders of this country. I don’t mean the major military victories that you can see on the news, or read in the paper, but the victories of the heart and will of the human. Every day an Iraqi awakes with the realization that they are free. That they can willfully speak their voice, right or wrong. Every day, as shown by the referendum, more and more Iraqi’s begin to place trust in their country, and in the protection that we are here to give to them. As contradictory as it might be, watching a country begin to take shape from this monster is an awesome thing to behold.
It will be hard for me to leave Iraq. Our time is done here, and now the battle is in another’s hands. I know that when I board that C-130 for my flight out of Mosul, and take my last breath of the Mosul air, that I will leave a piece of me in Iraq, and take a little piece of her home. She will be with me forever. The memories of her smiling children’s faces, the hot summer air, the gorgeous Arabian nights, and most assuredly, the thought of all the brave men and women who have fought and died for it all.
We have all followed the headlines of the vote in congress about a possible pullout of troops here. In my opinion (I want to make this clear, this is only my opinion, and I am only a Soldier, not a policy maker), a pullout at this time would be the most detrimental of all actions that our country could make, not to mention irresponsible. Truth be told, I don’t understand why there was ever a need for congress to even push the issue? What’s to debate? I will admit that I wasn’t completely sold on the war in Iraq in the beginning either, but after a year of witnessing the war for myself, I truly believe in what we are doing here. To me it doesn’t matter why we are, I am a Soldier, and go where I am ordered, but on a personal level, at the beginning, I thought hunting terrorists in Afghanistan was a more worth while fight. I was wrong. There are as many terrorists (not “insurgents”) here. I’m most certainly biased, but I’m certain that the U.S. Armed Forces are the best in the world, and I know for a fact that we are doing the best we can over here. Most of the Soldiers I have talked to feel exactly the same way. LET US DO OUR JOB! If we were to pullout now, everything that my unit has fought for this last year will be for nothing. Not to mention all of the men and women who suffer through severe injuries, and who’ve given their lives. It would be the ultimate of injustices to them to pullout now. Let us see this through to the end. If not for all the other reasons that I have mentioned; then for the simple fact, that it is unquestionably the right thing to do, and that all the people of Iraq, especially the children deserve it. I write this knowing full well, that I face the possibility of another deployment.
Many of us are looking to the future with optimism, both for Iraq, and our own lives. Some of us don’t know what the future holds for them, but will no doubt be just as successful as they were here. Unfortunately, for some, this war has taken a greater toll than just a year of life. Some of us have paid almost as much as the ones who will never again breath life, going home to broken lives due to the stress of being so far apart from their significant others. Personally, I will go back to my civilian job, and my family. I have a great girl that is waiting for me, and I just can’t wait to hold her in my arms again. Since I last wrote, I have re-enlisted in the guard for another 6 years (a sure sign I believe in what I preach), and don’t know if I will have to come back here again. If I do return here, I will hold my head high knowing that all of you great Americans back home are supporting me and have my back!
I just want to let all of you know that during the harder times in Iraq I have re-read some of the e-mails that you all have sent to me, and I still check the account for any new ones that might come my way. This has done wonders to lift my spirits at some very challenging times. Thank you! Please continue your support for us, and say thank you to any service member of any conflict that might come your way. They all deserve it. Maybe someday our lives might cross paths. If not, thank you again.
As I sit here and write this on Thanksgiving, although I have a lot to be thankful for this year, I thought I would share a little with you about what I am thankful for today. I am thankful for my family, they have been there for me, and without their guidance, I would be completely lost. I am thankful for God, that he has seen fit to protect me this last year, that he helps my battalion make it safely back home, that he continues to protect the troops that will still be here, and that he has taken into heaven with open arms, the men and women who have given their lives in this war, who he just couldn’t live without in heaven. I am thankful that I was born in America, and not a country like Iraq. As strange as it may seem, I am thankful that Americans still have the right to voice their opinions about this war (whether I agree with them or not), if America still has the right to voice it’s opinion, that means we’re doing our job over here, and doing it well! Most of all, I am thankful for my fiancĂ©, who has braved one of the most ultimate in hardships this last year, and stuck with me throughout it all. For certain, true love does exist. Finally, I am thankful that there are people back home who understand what we are fighting for, and proud of us.
God Bless!

Mosul, Iraq

Keep these fine men in your thoughts and prayers... Go to my sidebar... there is still time to adopt a soldier or two for Christmas.

....And I am thankful to you Sgt. Godspeed.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

A Day to Give Thanks

To everyone:

Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving. To put a little perspective on this holiday read, One Marine's View. And to all the men and women in uniform that can't be home, please know that you are in my prayers. Stay safe and God bless.

A Day of Public Thanksgiving and Prayer

"Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly implore His protection and favor-- and Whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint committee requested me to recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God, especially in a form of government for their safety and happiness.
"Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday...to be devoted by the people of these states to the service of that great and glorious Being Who is the beneficent Author of all that was, that is, or that will be--that we may then all unite in rendering Him our sincere and humble thanks...
"And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of nations, and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions...to render our national Government a blessing to the people...to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations...and to bless them with good government, peace and concord. To promote the knowledge and practice of true knowledge and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us--and generally to grant unto all mankind such a degree of prosperity as He alone knows to be best..."

--President George Washington, 1798 Courtesy of Bible.com

Thanksgiving Prayer

-President George W. Bush prays with troops before sharing Thanksgiving dinner at Fort Campbell, KY, November 2001.

"As the Pilgrims did almost four centuries ago, we gratefully give thanks for the beauty, abundance, and opportunity this great land offers. We also thank God for the blessings of freedom and prosperity; and, with gratitude and humility, we acknowledge the importance of faith in our lives.
Throughout the Thanksgiving holiday, let us renew our commitment to make our country and our world better...This Thanksgiving, we recognize the ties of friendship and respect that bind us together. And we renew our pledge to uphold the timeless principles of freedom, equality, and opportunity that have made our country into a great Nation. By working together, we will continue to build mutual trust, peace, and hope for all across this land and around the world." --

--President George W. Bush Courtesy of Bible.com

I'll see ya Sunday!

Update 11/23/05: Go visit Insolublog for a wonderful post. Hat Tip to The Gunn Nutt.

Update 11/24/05: Go visit Daisy Cutter. Hat Tip to the great Nickie Goomba. Stop by and say hi to Rob and Chrys. My drinking pal, Joshua has done a round up of several blogs. Special thanks to my girl Wonder Woman, and my sexy Italian pals Otimaster and Robinik.

If you have time, stop by and see some of our mil bloggers. Let them know we support them.

OK... Now for the toughest decision I have to make today... picking out the perfect outfit... you know... one with just the right amount of elastic in the waist....

See ya Sunday! (unless something strikes my fancy before then) Oh and don't forget... be nice and spread some Christmas cheer if you decide to go shopping tomorrow... !!!

Free from Want

Courtesy of Norman Rockwell Museum Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Dick Cheney

This post is dedicated to "Phil" that left a comment here.... Phil... pssst... hey Phil...please, next time have the courtesy of at least leaving an email address. Oh... and here's a tip... Be polite when visiting someone else's blog... no nasty words... how rude... why don't you get your own blog... That way, you can impress your liberal friends AND amuse conservatives....

Friends--- "Phil" posted this at 4:27.... is there a way we can trace him? I'd love to send him a love note... if anyone is savvy to this... please let me know!!

Now... as far as Dick Cheney... I adore him. I have loved him since he was part of the Reagan Admininistration where as Secretary of Defense he perfected that beautifully wonderful smirk.... I love that he can say just the right thing to cause folks such as Phil to go into a frenzy... I am disappointed that he won't run for office... and yet I respect him for this decision, because I don't expect that he has an agenda... oh... wait.... I forgot....

(play screechy Psycho soundtrack now)

Oh.... wait.... he divested himself.... he has no monetary interest in the company... This is a requirement for executive office...

So... Here's to my man.... I love him I love him!!

To Phil:

Peace through Victory!!!

See ya, wouldn't wanna be ya!


Dick Cheney

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Visit Grey Eagle

Thanks to an email from Paul at Blue Blogging Soapbox, he alerted me to a post from Jay Tea at WizBang. Grey Eagle, a soldier serving in Iraq needs our support. I urge you to drop by and offer words of encouragement and thanks.

Happy Thanksgiving Monkey Man

Partly Cloudy Hi 73 Lo 55 for Baghdad, Iraq
Partly Cloudy Hi 53 Lo 35 for Northern Kentucky, USA

Song of the Week: Kind and Generous, Natalie Merchant

Thanksgiving marks the beginning of my favorite time of year, but as all 12 of you know, work has been so hectic and stressful for me. One way I have been trying to combat the blues has been to listen to music- jazz and classical instead of my beloved talk radio shows. One afternoon this past week I listened to NPR and they played some music that I really liked by a group called Hem... The announcer mentioned the group members... Gary Maurer, Steve Curtis, Sally Ellyson & Dan Messa. Huh...whadyaknow... I had a dear friend a lifetime ago named Gary Maurer... back in high school...I wonder if he is one in the same. So, of course I "Googled" him... and found a picture of the band... wow... my old friend, Monkey Man... The rush of fond memories...There was a group of us that used to hang out in his basement everyday after school, listening to music, discussing music and the artistic value of videos (way back in the day many music videos did have artistic merit), smoking cigarettes, comparing Surrealism to Expressionism, drinking coffee, and discussing the world and our place in it, occasionally working on homework. It was always the same group in one form or another- Jimi and Rodney and Pam and Scott and Robert and Sophia and Adam and Butch and Carl and a revolving door of others. Gary's mom was always so sweet to us. She would always say to anyone that would listen, "Gary's going to be a rock star." I always thought that was so cool, that his Mother was so supportive of his dreams. I believed her, Gary and Jimi (another artist) were talented beyond their years already. As I remember, his guitar of choice back then was his Fender Stratocaster. There were a couple of bands over the years that were formed- one was pretty good and they actually played a few parties. After we all graduated from high school, we all stayed in touch for the first couple of years of college, but then slowly drifted apart. As I recall, after Gary graduated high school, he moved to New York City (pre Mayor Rudy Giuliani days) to study music and his first months there were staying at the YMCA. I always thought that was really brave...to move from a little suburb of Cincinnati, a place that Mark Twain once reportedly said, "When the end of the world comes, I want to be in Cincinnati because it's always twenty years behind the times." In any event, I had some wonderful times with these folks and think of them very fondly. Most recently I received several emails from Jimi during the 2004 elections and they were heated and at times ugly, but Jimi made a comment about that time being the most formative time of his life. At the time of our correspondence, I didn't really acknowledge what he wrote, but in reflecting on his statement now, Jimi was right. It was a turbulent time for me- the on again off again animosity I feel towards my mom stems from those days (without valid reason, mind you), but that circle of friends as well as a few others really kept me grounded. God we had fun!

So Gary and his new music brought me a sense of calm and I thank him for that. Hearing his name made me remember all the great times we all shared. Best concert ever- Talking Heads Stop Making Sense Tour. Worst movie to see on Christmas Eve - Scarface....

I have no idea what else is in Monkey's life, but I wish him happiness and success for all his days...

So now with fond memories floating in my head rather than self pity, I want to share with you all the things that I am thankful for. I love Thanksgiving. I love Christmas and I expect that since this is my favorite time of year, my posts through the end of 2005 will revolve around them in one way or another. Indulge me please and let me know if I forget anything and if I do, please do not take offense as it is 3:30 in the morning and I'm bound to forget something.
  • My husband. Of all the people on this planet, he has given me so much. He is the kindest gentlest soul you will ever meet and I'm fortunate to call him my best friend, my love, my reason for living and Natalie is singing for him.
  • God's grace
  • My family- mom, grandparents, brother, sis in law, my nieces and nephews I'm grateful to be born into this dysfunctional family of mine. I wouldn't trade one of them... no... not one........
  • Michael's family- the other dysfunctional family in my life.
  • My beautiful nieces and nephews
  • Our friends, close and distant
  • Planes Trains and Automobiles
  • Our cats--- all 5 of them (oh.... she's one of THOSE people...)
  • Long drives in the country with Michael
  • Long walks in the woods with Michael
  • My ability to laugh at my own stupidity
  • Being born in the greatest nation
  • Jean Schmidt's balls: Congresswoman from right across the river
  • U2
  • fond memories of old friends
  • our home
  • air shows
  • Kentucky bourbon
  • My purple room
  • lava lamps and Japanese lanterns
  • Michael's Thanksgiving dressing
  • My grandmother's sarcasm
  • My grandfather's gentle soul
  • My brother's moodiness
  • My mother's laugh
  • My mother in law's melodic voice
  • My sis in law's better than Martha Stewart ways
  • Old people moments
  • Michaelisms
  • I'm glad I was able to meet Michael's father
  • Ronald Reagan
  • Ketel One Cosmopolitans
  • Laughing until my stomach hurts
  • The ability to cry for joy
  • The ability to cry freely at the playing of our National Anthem
  • The fact that my sis in law has more gray than I do
  • Monet
  • GW
  • It's a Wonderful Life
  • popcorn
  • a healthy fear of carnies
  • Jimmy Stewart
  • Yul Brynner
  • Cary Grant
  • Rosalind Russell in Auntie Mame
  • good neighbors
  • new friends
  • A Christmas Story
  • our men and women in uniform, past and present

2 small pieces of advice for this season of giving:

  • Take time to thank as many folks as you can that wear a uniform... from policemen to firemen, to EMT's to nurses and doctors, to our military.
  • When shopping make a truce (Michael and I do this every year when we go Christmas shopping) to not get nasty or short with each other or others. We go through a checklist of sorts.... ***don't get impatient when sitting in traffic or trying to find a parking space- it's inevitable, so why get upset?, ***smile and make eye contact with all sales help, wish them Merry Christmas- chances are you are the first soul that has been nice to them all day. (discussing lack of quality sales help is not the issue here.. bringing good cheer is) ***smile and make eye contact with other shoppers and when possible wish them a Merry Christmas (especially the impatient ones).

I promise you, although awkward at first, if you follow those 2 simple rules, every single time you go out -- your holiday season will be that much nicer. Yeah, you do occasionally get the Scrooge that will never lighten up, but just say BahHumbug AND Merry Christmas to them. People do get it and chances are they will start to think of the true meaning of the season as well...

I leave you with this. Click on the link below to view a moving slideshow. Remember there will be so many of our finest that won't be home this season. If you can, set up a table with a card(s) for your family and friends to sign. There are countless ways to get cards and letters to our soldiers... make room in your home so we remember that they are still there...

This presentation is dedicated to those who will "stay the course." They know that if we do not, it is our children or their children that will have to finish or even repeat what we have started and those who have sacrificed so much will be all for not.
Courtesy of GCS Distributing

[U.S. Representative Jean Schmidt] told her new colleagues of a phone call she had just received from freshman Ohio state Rep. Danny R. Bubp of West Union, a colonel in the Marine Corps Reserve. "He asked me to send Congress a message: Stay the course. He also asked me to send Congressman Murtha a message - that cowards cut and run, Marines never do," said Schmidt, of Miami Township. "Danny and the rest of America and the world want the assurance from this body that we will see this through." By Malia Rulon Cincinnati Enquirer Washington Bureau

Here are a couple of places I wanted to share with you:

A must see for all you Paris Hilton fans and a train wreck for those of us that can't help but stare when confronted by... well... you'll see... Her facial expression never ever changes...
Peru 2005 November
Native Eye

you've been so kind and generous
I don't know how you keep on giving
for your kindness I'm in debt to you
for your selflessness, my admiration
and for everything you've done

you know I'm bound...
I'm bound to thank you for it

you've been so kind and generous
I don't know how you keep on giving
for your kindness I'm in debt to you
and I never could have come this far without you
so for everything you've done

you know I'm bound...
I'm bound to thank you for it

I want to thank you
for so many gifts
you gave with love and tenderness
I want to thank you

I want to thank you
for your generosity
the love and the honesty
that you gave me

I want to thank you
show my gratitude
my love and my respect for you
I want to thank you

I want to...

thank you
thank you
thank you
thank you
thank you
thank you


My oldest niece went to her first dance earlier this month (with a group of girlfriends). I can hardly believe it.

Michael and I go for walks at the Boone County Arboretum. This was the last of the fall color.


Saturday, Michael and I toured Buffalo Trace Distillery . The following photo is of a wood sculpture made on site from a 300 year old sycamore tree... impressive use of serious manly power tools.


Barrels of Buffalo Trace Bourbon... This was barrelled 12/30/99.


Buffalo Trace offices.


Buffalo Trace Campus.


Thursday, November 17, 2005

Ketel One Cosmopolitans and the Weblog Awards

OK... so this morning... due to lack of sleep and dreading another day at work and wanting to be part of the pack... I nominated myself... for the 2005 Weblog Awards...Best of the 1001 to 1750 blogs... God... what the hell was I thinking? I was commited to keeping this stupid act to myself... or begging Kevin to remove my comment...

So this evening... I went out with some friends from work (ever see the movie Office Space?) and had a few girly drinks.... hence my sudden boldness and need to purge my soul and confess that I nominated myself.... how humiliating...

Why... oh why... did I share? Well, I'll tell you why... 2 parts Ketel One, 1 part Cointreau, 1/2 a lime and a splash of cranbury juice... x 4.... yummy... pretty kick your a$$ girly drinks.... (although mine are better...)

I looked and there are better blogs in this category... namely Blue Blogging Soapbox... I'll be voting for him...

So tomorrow, when I have sobered up.... I'll regret that I shared this...

What the hell... was I thinking.... good grief....

Sunday, November 13, 2005

All I need...

Sunny Hi 76 Lo 52 for Baghdad, Iraq
Cloudy, Rainy Hi 65 Lo 35 for Northern Kentucky, USA

Song of the Week: Love Song, The Cure

...Just remember I was listening to a lot of The Cure at the time I wrote this...
--The Wedding Singer

Visit my new map. The other map was a royal yucko... Try this one on for size...

Check out our Frappr!

So, I don't feel like blogging... I'm still getting killed at work... and it's having an impact on everything. I've become this witch and I'm impossible to live with. Just ask the love of my life...The truth of the matter is I'm just overwhelmingly sad... I don't know why... I know this will pass... For the sake of everyone around me and for my own sanity it has to end soon.

Abe was heaven sent. His poetry was perfect and he gets credit for this post and for this post. As I read his work and as I get his permission, I will continue to share his work with you. My thanks again to this friendly stranger.

I also have to throw a shout out to the Lone Ranger. He did something that I suggested... He has opened his blog for comments... Who knew that I would be able to influence this thoughtful man. Go check him out if he isn't a regular stop for you... he should be...Important Stuff or Not. NO pressure, Kimosabe!!!

I need comfort items. I need my coffee, I need my fleece blanket, I need Michael and my kitty, Sid to fall asleep in my lap... that's all I need... (said in Steve Martin's voice from the movie The Jerk).

Instead of my usual painful ramble (right. Cath...), I thought I would share my love of art with you. Here, you will find links to artist and museum websites... This is a peek into my soul... I have always fancied myself an artist except without the uh... you know, discipline... uh... or you know, the talent... ah....
My favorite genre has never changed...I've always loved the French Impressionists. I love the sentimentality of it, I love the palette, color vs form, the emotion, the passion. I love that they were pioneers and were willing to try something that had never been done. I love critiquing a piece for it's technical merit and composition. I like to have my nose just mere inches from the canvas and I love to cross the room and look at the piece from a distance. I love sculpture, how I love sculpture... I love the human form in all its wonderful shapes and sizes... a landscape, a still life- to be able to see the world through the eyes of Degas, VanGogh, Matisse, Cezanne, Dali, O'Keefe, Adams, Seurat, Dine, Munch, Gauguin, Klimt.

No snobbery permitted when touring a museum with me. There is plenty I do not like...I'll keep that to myself... as goofy as it is... art is in the eye of the beholder. I like art that evokes emotion-any kind of emotion, Expressionism is another powerful genre. I used to protest every single Madonna and Child I came in contact with... but with age, I have a growing appreciation for the Renaissance period.... But above all others... I love artists that convey a sense of humor... humor I believe is probably the hardest thing to show on a canvas...

**The images on this site are available for personal use and may be accessed on a temporary basis for the sole purpose of viewing, or for fair use as defined in the United States copyright law. Any such use must be properly attributed to both the artist and to the appropriate art museum. Manipulation or redistribution in any form for commercial use, including commercial publication, or for personal gain is strictly prohibited.

Here are my favorites...

A Sunday on La Grande Jatte - 1884 - George Seurat

Cincinnati Art Museum

Siesta - circa 1900 - Frank Duveneck

Norton Simon Museum



Dancers in the Wings - 1880 - Edgar Degas

The Thinker - 1880 - Auguste Rodin

some other artists...

Leonardo di Vinci
Georgia O'Keefe
George Rodrigue
Jim Dine
Salvador Dali

and museums...

Metropolitan Museum of Art
Contemporary Arts Center
Taft Museum
Norman Rockwell

Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life." - Pablo Picasso

Have a great week.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Veterans Day

Update: 6:30 P.M, eastern-- a must read and listen to ..."A Last Word on Veterans Day" from The Lone Ranger at Important Stuff or Not
Update: 7:30 PM -- so many amazing tributes...

* Diane's Stuff
* Peakah's Provocations
* Pettifog
* Daisy Cutter
* Marine Viper, still celebrating 230. Go thank him.
* Camp Katrina asks you to Thank a Veteran. Thank him too- a good man.
* I'll leave you with Major K. He is back in Iraq.

another poem from Abe...


The Great War ends in the Eleventh month
On the Eleventh hour of the Eleventh day
It was called the “War to end all Wars”
At least, that’s what they used to say.

President Wilson proclaimed Armistice Day
To Honor those who died in “The Great War”
To “Celebrate the sanctity of Peace”
Was what this Special Day was for.

The second Anniversary of the Armistice
France and England honored their Unknown Dead
President Wilson named the nearest Sunday
To be “Armistice Day Sunday”, in its stead.

The Tomb Of The Unknown Soldier
Was Dedicated at Arlington
Congress Declared the Eleventh a Federal Holiday
For the year of Nineteen twenty-one.

Legislation is passed by Congress
To make it a legal Federal Holiday
And most States choose to follow suit
And Honor that same Armistice Day.

World War Two is fought and won
And adds several millions more
Of Veterans who Served our Country
And who Fought in another World War.

We had the War in Korea
And once more those numbers grew
Making three within the Tomb
Of those Soldiers no one knew.

President Eisenhower changed the name
And since then, known as Veteran’s Day
To Honor all who have ever Served
Our Nation in that Military way.

We had America’s longest War
That was never to be completed
Some wounds lasting until this day
Sadly, back Home some were mistreated.

Congress passes the Monday Holiday Law
Changing it to the fourth one in October
Why they had to mess with it?
I bet they didn’t even know, for sure.

They changed their mind once again
In Seventy-five, to change it back
Seems they’d have better things to do
But for wasting time, they have a knack.

To Present
Seems we have been at War forever
And sometimes seems to be no end
Will we ever have Peace on Earth
And Troops with nowhere to send?

For as long as we need them
We will have those who Serve us all
Who will step up, do Wartime’s job
Whenever they hear our Nation’s call.

So this day let’s tell them, “Thank you!”
And show all those Brave Souls we care
Whether they Serve us here at home
Or somewhere afar, way over there.

And let’s say a Prayer for all those Lost
Heroes of whom we stand in awe
For giving their all to Wartime’s curse
To this sad, uniquely Human flaw.

Del "Abe" Jones

To my family and friends that are currently serving or have served, an old girl in Kentucky thanks you.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

A Marine Birthday

It's not Sunday... but... I can't let today go without saying....

Happy Birthday Marines!! --Love the hair, love the uniform, love the attitude.

Thank you. Thank you so much.

Out of the blue I received an email from from Abe. Now, I'm sure you are asking, Cath... who's this Abe guy? Well, I don't know. I just checked my email Wednesday morning and there was this email... from Abe... with this poem... and a bunch of other poems... My Sunday post reported the serious rut I have been in for the past few weeks and how I was basically losing it. Sometimes it takes a dose of reality, a kick in the pants, and God's hand to put things into perspective. So, Abe... thanks for dropping me a note and thanks for permission to print them. Your poems are wonderful and I look forward to sharing more of them with your permission.

(November 10)

Eight years after they were formed
At the end of the Revolutionary War
All the Navy’s ships were sold
Marines and Sailors were no more.

Then, in Seventeen ninety-eight
The Marines once more came to be
And they fought Barbary pirates
Along the “Shores of Tripoli”.

During the War of Eighteen Twelve
They defended Washington
Along with many other Operations
Before that War was done.

They served in the Mexican War
And among Battles that they fought
One to the “Halls of Montezuma”
Alongside General Winfield Scott.
“Bull Run” during the Civil War
And blockades at Cape Hatteras
At New Orleans and Charleston
And Fort Fisher toward the last.

The Spanish-American War
The Boxer Rebellion in China
Fights in Cuba, Mexico, Haiti
In Nicaragua and Panama.

On the Battlefields of France
The “Devil Dogs” earned their name
And many thousands killed or wounded
In World War One’s deadly game.

And most of us know their stories
About the Heroes of WWII
There’s some seem impossible
But we all know they’re true.

During the War in Korea
Twenty-five thousand gave their all
Fighting many gallant battles
Answering our Country’s call.

“The Cold War” found them everywhere
In countries all around the Earth
Trying hard to keep the Peace
And showing all their worth.

In Sixty-Five they landed in Da Nang
With eighty-five thousand “in country”
They served with Pride and Honor
Although our Country would not see.

On their Two Hundred Thirtieth Birthday
We have them serving in Iraq
As well as so many other places
To try to hold the Terrorists back.

Maybe someday there will be Peace
And Good Will on Earth and more
But until then lets all give Thanks
We have the United States Marine Corps.


So... feeling sorry for myself... how can I after reading this poem about our finest? Perspective...

An organization of Marines was authorized when the Continental Congress made the following resolution on November 10, 1775:

“Resolved, That two battalions of Marines be raised consisting of one colonel, two lieutenant-colonels, two majors, and other officers, as usual in other regiments; that they consist of an equal number of privates with other battalions; that particular care be taken that no persons be appointed to office, or enlisted into said battaions but such as are good seamen, or so acquainted with maritime affairs as to be able to serve with advantage by sea when required; that they be enlisted and commissioned to serve for and during the present War with Great Britain and the colonies, unless dismissed by order of Congress; that they be distinguished by names of First and Second Battalions of American Marines, and that they be considered as part of the number which the Continental Army before Boston is ordered to consist of.”

courtesy of Scuttlebutt & Small Chow

To test your knowledge about the Marines, go here. If you went through boot camp and don't know this... well... that wouldn't happen, would it?
Go visit Abe and drop him a note. Scuttlebutt has a nice website... Go visit all the blogs by Marines (I have a few on my blog roll) and wish them a happy birthday and thank them.

Always Faithful

Marine posters courtesy of Bluejacket

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Let me please breakdown...

Mostly Sunny Hi 76 Lo 56 for Baghdad, Iraq ** first time since I started this blog that it was "mostly" in Baghdad. Enjoy the weather fellas...
Cloudy, Rainy, Windy Hi 63 Lo 41 for Northern Kentucky, USA

Featured Song of the Week: Breakdown, Jack Johnson

Hi All-

I'm keeping this Sunday's blog short (in theory---I can never be short when rambling)... Quite frankly, I'm mentally drained. My job has been kicking me in the backside for three solid weeks and I don't see it subsiding anytime soon. My weekends right now are incredibly precious....precious...my precious...

I've done some housekeeping around here. I've given up on having a playlist for now. I've killed some stuff I don't use. Cleaning is good... mindless, methodical work is good... yes... very good...

I have added some blogs to a few of my blogrolls-- especially the "have some more coffee" blog roll. I've been reading a lot of mil blogs and mom blogs... go figure... I really like this gal at Mommy Needs Coffee.

I discovered Diane had really cool stuff when I was checking out Joshua's plaid flannel. Check out Diane's radioblog... nice mix of older stuff... Both these folks are just as nice as can be.

Please visit my dear friends Master Jedi Rob and Wonder Woman. Both will be brilliant and witty and wonderful.

Go visit Michael and tell him I told you to stop by. Who is he? He is the love my life. Thank God I have him.

I'm all right... I'm tired... and when I'm tired, I'm emotional...usually angry and foul mouthed... but now I'm just weepy... What the hell?? My wiring right now is frantic...I don't know how to "turn off" work sometimes... Thanks to Coffee and Varnish... click on the link below. It sums up what has been happening at work...and subsequently in my brain.... just wish it were this tidy... I stared at this for wow... a long time....

I hope this old train breaks down
Then I could take a walk around
And, see what there is to see
And time is just a melody
All the people in the street
Walk as fast as their feet can take them
I just roam through town
And though my windows got a view
The frame im looking through
Seems to have no concern for me now
So for now

I need this here
Old train to breakdown
Oh please just
Let me please breakdown

This engine screams out loud
Sayin the beat gunna crawl westbound
So I dont even make a sound
Cause its gunna sting me when I leave this town
All the people in the street
That i'll never get to meet
If these dont bend somehow
And I got no time
That I got to get to
Where I dont need to be
So I

I need this here
Old train to breakdown
Oh please just
Let me please breakdown
I need this here
Old train to breakdown
Oh please just
Let me please breakdown
I wanna break on down
But I cant stop now
Let me break on down

But you cant stop nothing
If you got no control
Of the thoughts in your mind
That you kept in, you know
You don't know nothing
But you don't need to know
The wisdoms in the trees
Not the glass windows
You cant stop wishing
If you don't let go
But things that you find
And you lose, and you know
You keep on rolling
Put the moment on hold
The frames too bright
So put the blinds down low

I need this here
Old train to breakdown
Oh please just
Let me please breakdown
I need this here
Old train to breakdown
Oh please just
Let me please breakdown
I wanna break on down
But I cant stop now

I'll leave you with some pictures from our trip up to Amish Country last weekend.... Have a great week everyone!!

red barn Posted by Picasa

drag racing Posted by Picasa

camoflage Posted by Picasa

rolling hills Posted by Picasa

Rob's Totem Posted by Picasa

Slow traffic imminent, so relax... don't be in such a hurry... Posted by Picasa