Thursday, July 21, 2011

An STL Weekend w/ U2 & the Zoo

Many months ago, we picked up tix for the U2 concert in STL.  We had no idea if we'd be in town.  We had no idea what we'd do with Cooper.  It was U2.  In STL... there was no question. 

If you watched a time lapse of our life conversation since then, you'd hear a lot of, "What are we going to do with Cooper?"   It's a whole 'nother post, but suffice it to say, Cooper has very specific needs when it comes to sleep.  One of those necessities happens to be Suzi.  Alone.

What was a concert soon became a full-blown weekend vacation at Len & Helen's house with all the wonderful love and attention that goes along with it.  The two McGarvey siblings dragged their respective families into their living room and deposited what constituted a small wagon train of supplies worthy of the Oregon Trail.  Do you know what it takes to keep two 15 month-olds going for three days?  I do.  And it required me using my roof rack.

But that was really only necessary because I was also carrying a small studio with me as well.  Cyndy, a fellow AIMer, is about to go on the fundraising road, so we're doing her promo video.  It made sense for us to meet in STL for a taping while the clan invaded the Zoo and the house returned to some semblance of order.  Throw in a BBQ with the McClintock crew and, well, yeah...  it was a busy weekend.

But the shining star of the whole parade was Bono and friends at Busch Stadium.  General admission meant it was all up to us as to where we got to stand.  Part of the group went early.  Suzi & I waited it out as long as we could before heading over to the venue.  Something about 10,000 people crushed into the infield, all standing on an aluminum floor baked at 100 degrees just kept me second-guessing right up to our Gate 5 entry.  I was happily surprised.  Busch spokesmen were warning of baked potato burns from the floor and advertising cooling stations.  It was downright pleasant.  We stood in great view of the stage.  The rest of our group was tucked up in the inner circle under the bridges... and they've got great pix to prove it.

It was a good concert.  I was nearly teary when Bono walked past the entry camera and appeared on the massive 360 screen.  This has been a bucket-lister for us and we got it done.  Just the two of us.  It was the first time Suz and I have done something alone for any stretch of time in 15 mos.  Big steps for baby parents.  We left mid-way through to relieve the baby-sitters... it took two sets of uncles & aunts to deal with our combined brood.  Cooper did alright.  Not great... but well enough to not leave indelible scarring on the family. 

Pix are in the usual place... and a side note: If you program your thermostat to Vacation, but forget to add in the "cool" function, you get to come home to 89 degrees... and that takes some time to cool down.  

Just passin' that on.

Monday, July 11, 2011

New Skills

Caps & Pens
The Mouse
Chocolate Ice cream

All the necessities of life.

Life & Military Spouses

A co-worker of mine is married to an Air Force Reservist. Rumors floated for sometime that there would be a ship date soon, and a couple of weeks ago, the papers finally arrived.  He's going to Afghanistan at the end of July.  This started a flurry of activity for them and quite a bit of conversation for all of us.  They've been married less than a year.  She's managed to deal with the weekend separations and a two-week training op, but 9 mos is a whole 'nother story.  Did they know this was a possibility?  Sure.  It comes with the territory.  But, there's still something lurking just below the surface when we all talk about the deployment.  He's going to war and, as much as we all like to wave flags and cheer, it's scary for everyone involved.

She recently passed over a blog entry from a career military spouse to me.  It was an interesting take on the home-bound reality of military life.  This was my co-worker's perspective:

"The blog does explain the large and obvious separation between military families and civilian families.  But in my eyes it shows the bravery that most spouses carry and the pride they have in their husbands/wives, which is what I find most inspiring within the military today[...] That is why spouses like her are people I look up to being new to military life, even if I only see and deal with an ounce of what she lives through daily."

We talked last week about the fact we've been at war in some form since 2003.  In contrast to the civilian environment of WWII, our lives are largely unchanged.  No rationing, no bond drives, no politicians drumming up support "for our boys over there" at every public gathering.  It's not a world war per se, but there is world-wide conflict.  It's not something to take lightly nor forget in our daily, mundane routines.  Somewhere there's a mom or a dad or sibling or spouse shipping out.  And they're leaving a big hole behind.

Ask how you can support your local military family...

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

July 4th Weekend

Our weekend consisted of two things:

Pulling out carpet and Cooper on the back deck with a hose. 

All other events, family or otherwise can fall under these two categories.  It was a good weekend.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Professor Greenbottoms

Because sometimes you need a bunny named "Prof Greenbottoms," the blue binkus and a book with mom to help you wind down at the end of the day.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

I *heart* organization...

I was putting away a... um... few hangers we'd accumulated during the unpacking.  I realized I was subconsciously color coordinating them in the box.  I admit it... these types of things give me great joy.  For years, my clothes were hung in my closet with care... by color... with matching hangers.  Blue shirt.  Blue hanger.  Green shirt.  Green hanger.
Some people smoke.  I coordinate.

For those who may share some of this joy with me, I'd like to pass on an absolutely addicting site (as if you needed another) of all things organized neatly.