Wednesday, March 31, 2010

I'm Back!

I've missed blogging, but I had a great trip to see my family. I'll post the highlights now, but I'll have individual blog posts for each day of my visit.

I got the see The Boy at his school on my first day. We had a great visit and I got to meet some of his fraternity brothers and I took him to lunch. After I visited with him, I drove on to spend the night with Pam. You can read about our friendship here.

I spent quality time with my mom, my aunt, uncle, my cousin and her family, The Man's cousin, The Amish, a couple of good friends from high school, another aunt, and my sister and her family.

It was a great trip and I'm so happy that I went, but it was good to get home.

I have pictures and my nieces are excited to be stars of a future blog post. :)

Happy Wednesday!

Friday, March 26, 2010

A quick post

I'm making a quick post from my sister's house. I couldn't let the day go by without wishing my pretend boyfriend a very Happy Birthday! Steven...even though you are are still HOT!


xoxo share a birthday with my sweet niece Christine who is celebrating her SWEET 16 today! Happy Birthday, Christine!!!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Spring Break

I decided to not post the birth story today...I'll leave you wondering. Instead, today I'm going to post about my excitement for spring break!

Like I said before, this will likely be my last spring break from my current district. They have RIFd 20 of us assistants and I've heard rumblings of them only calling 5-6 back. The likelihood of me getting called back is slim to none, considering I'm #13 on the seniority list, I think. That's ok. It's not the end of the world. This time next year, God willing, I'll have another job and life will continue on.

Back to SPRING BREAK! So, tomorrow I leave to see The Boy. We have plans for him to show me around campus, give me a tour of his fraternity house, meet his brothers, and then I'm taking him somewhere to eat something other than university food. I'm very excited! After visiting with him, I'm going to drive over to my friend Pam's house. She and I met a long time ago via the internet and actually met in person twice, once in Indianapolis and once in Chicago for a girls' weekend. So, I'm going to hang out with her, hopefully meet her husband and daughter, and spend the evening dishing, laughing....just doing what girls do when we get together.

On Sunday morning, I'm going to continue on to see my mom. She and I always have fun when we're together. We just act like a couple of girlfriends. I am so fortunate to have that kind of relationship with my mom. While I'm there, I'm planning on seeing a dear friend from high school and The Man's sweet cousin, who just happens to be one of my best friends. Joni and I can sit, drink cawfee, and tawlk for hours. Good times.

While I'm gone, I won't be blogging because I'm going to leave my laptop behind. However, I plan on having a lot of material to blog about upon my return. Plus, I still need to post my birth story. I just know you're sitting at the edges of your seats to read about that! ;)

See you in a week!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

The Beginning

I'm not sure if I mentioned this before, but I was a very young bride. The Man was 19 and I was 20 when we got married. He was in the Navy and had a steady job, insurance, etc. That's not what made it 'ok' for us to get married, though, because we were crazy in love. CRAZY in love. It was like magic. We still describe it like that to this day.

We grew up together in a small town in WV. We have known one another our entire lives, but we didn't date until he joined the Navy and I went off to college. We sent letters back and forth and then he told me he was coming to WVU to visit me. I guess you can say I lassoed him. ;) He came to my dorm room to see me and I planted a huge kiss on him and the rest was history. I knew what I wanted and I was not going to let him go. It wasn't too difficult since he told me that he secretly had feelings for me, also, but just wasn't sure how I'd respond. Funny how life is, right?

So, I went from living in a tiny town in WV with my parents, to a university in a large town/city, and then to Virginia Beach. Can you say, "Culture shock?" I didn't really know what I was getting into. I just knew that it was The Man and I against the world. My mom tells me that she would lie awake at night and picture me being abducted by some unknown assassin in a van...and she would never see me again. Looking back, I can understand her fears, but at the time, I was carefree and in love.

Oh, and did I mention that we moved in with The Man's two roommates? No? Well, we did. It was supposed to be for a very short amount of time, until we found a place of our own. My dad was worried that I would be the maid for the three, cooking, etc. That's not how it worked, though. Matt and Kurt were very independent and the four of us got along famously. The guys were all on the same ship, so they all were deployed at the same time. It was a blessing and a curse, because when they were deployed, I was home alone. However, I made friends easily and found my way around town. Matt still had 9 months on the lease to the 3 bedroom apartment that we shared, so instead of finding a new roommate, he offered the master bedroom to us, so that we'd have some privacy, and we split the rent three ways. What a deal for newlyweds, right?

We lived in that apartment until the lease was up, then we moved to a town home in Virginia Beach and set up house, just the two of us. That's when we finally felt like we were becoming grown ups. We lived there for a couple of years, then decided that we needed to move closer to the base and to a cheaper apartment, so we moved to Norfolk. We moved into the same subdivision as Melisa and Jim. I got the address of our new town home and Melisa went over to peek in the window of my 'new' kitchen. See, these town houses were older. They had nice parquet flooring, but the kitchens were a bit outdated. Melisa's kitchen was a pretty shade of bright yellow. Ours? Not so much. We lucked out and got the gorgeous shade of AQUA. I don't mean the walls were that color. No, I could have lived with that. The refrigerator, dishwasher, stove, and even the sink were that color. Nice, eh? So, what did I do? I sucked it up and went out and bought dishes that had that color in it and dealt. That's what you do, right? Besides, it was just a kitchen in a rental apartment. It wasn't the end of the world.

The sucky part of the whole deal? AT&T (remember them?) was on strike at the time, so we had no phone. So, we had to wait awhile to get a hook up for our telephone. No problem, except for the fact that one morning when I was going out to get into my car to go to school.....NO CAR, just glass where it was. Seriously? Is this a joke? No car, no phone, no husband, since he was deployed at the time (why did things happen during deployments?) So, I went across the street to the maintenance man's apartment to call the police. I did eventually get the car back. A year later, it was broken into again. was an Isuzu IMark, folks, not a Lamborghini. Not sure what the deal with that was. (I should have planted Rex the wonderdog out in that car to deter anyone from messing with it ever again! Remember him? He was the one who chewed the water intake to the toilet and flooded the bathroom and kitchen. Hell Hound. That would show them, right?)

So, we lived there while I went to school and worked. The Man was on a ship and was in and out of his home port (out more often than in!) Melisa and I commuted to school together. She and I both got our classes on Tues and Thurs and had marathon days of school. On one day, I'd drive and she'd pack the lunch and then on the opposite day, she'd drive and I'd pack. PB&J always tasted better when she packed the lunch! ;) On M, W, F I'd drive in to VaBeach to my job and work 8 hours/day. I was wondering why I was sick and tired all. of. the. time. Could it be from the 18 credits plus the work load? Or could it be from something else? Hmmmm.....Finally, a friend at work asked if I could be pregnant. Get outta town! No way! So, I picked up an EPT on the way home from work that night and took it the next morning. Yep, positive.

So, the first person I told was Melisa. She was shocked, but then was happy for me. It was a bit more difficult to tell The Man since he was in the middle of the Indian Ocean. This was before email, etc. So, I called Western Union and sent him the following telegram: Going to have a baby STOP Letter to follow STOP I love you STOP Dawn. The nice lady on the other end of the phone helped me compose that eloquent message.

The Man came home in August to a wife who was seven months pregnant. I was a lean, hot woman when he left and when he got home, I was pretty much a beached whale. He didn't mind, though. He enjoyed hoisting me out of bed in the mornings, rubbing my back, fetching my chocolate and peanut butter, etc. We were just PRAYING that he would be in port when our little bundle of joy arrived.

And that story is for another time! Stay tuned! ;)

Singing in the car

Admit it...we all do it. Here is a little something to start your day off with a smile! Sing it loud and proud! :)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

I'm so LOST!

I love reality television. I think I've mentioned that before. However, one of my favorite shows isn't reality. It's a series that is, sadly, on its final season. 'LOST' is full of twist and turns. The show makes a person sit and actually think. For a person like me, who views television as an escape, it seems odd that I would choose a series that makes me use my mind (or is that LOSE my mind?) But it really is an escape for me. I tend to watch online so that I don't miss a thing (and also, since getting DirecTV and not having a DVR, I can't record it....I watch 'The Biggest Loser' and am really 'into' their weight loss and rooting them on like we are bff or something.)

So, imagine me sitting here, with my precious lab sleeping at my feet, watching 'LOST' online. Imagine me being blindsided by an event on 'LOST' and actually SCREAMING. Imagine my precious lab awakening, looking at me like I'm a loon, and then getting up to sleep in the other room. Crazy, right? That's what that show does to me.

I will be LOST without it!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Sunshine and seeing the light

The sun is finally shining here in Farm Country! I hope it lasts. I'm leaving on Saturday to see The Boy at school and I'm very excited about that. Afterward, I'm heading over to see a friend and then on to my mom's house.

Mom and I have big plans:
  • visit Holmes County, Ohio to see the Amish
  • go to lunch
  • talk
  • laugh
  • chill
  • visit family
This will likely be my last spring break, so I'm making the most of it (the state of IL is broke, so I'm going to be laid off at the end of the school year after 11 years with the district.) However, I do know that this could possibly be the best gift I've ever received and I have to keep my chin up. There are other things out there for me and I have a lot to give.

And like The Man keeps telling me, even if I don't have a job at the end of this year, I still have a future. I love that man!

Thursday, March 11, 2010


  • You know that spring is just about officially here when you awaken to a thunderstorm (and your huge Labrador climbs into your lap and tries to bury his head in your armpit)
  • Spring break is a week away and I'm headed to OH to see The Boy and then to WV to see my mom.
  • While I'm in OH, I'm visiting a friend who lives an hour from The Boy's school. Girl time!
  • While in WV, I'm going to visit The Man's cousin (who happens to be one of my best friends) and hopefully some old high school pals.
  • Mom and I are going to see the Amish in Holmes County, Ohio!
  • The Man and I are going on an "adventure vacation" this summer....just get in the car and drive until half the money runs out, then turn around and drive home. ;)
  • One of our stops (after our class reunion) is going to be Lancaster County in PA to....SEE THE AMISH!
  • We desperately need a break from reality, so that little getaway will be a lifesaver.
  • I've lost 15 far.
  • I went out for Mexican last night, so I'm not weighing myself any time soon!
  • I love reality tv....Is there a 12 Step Program for people like me?
Have a great Thursday! Remember...Hair is Important! Oh, wait....This isn't Shear Genius. Sorry! ;)

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Book Club

I joined a book club a few months ago. I should say that I re-joined the book club because I was a member a few years ago, but dropped out because I was busy being a mom, Scout leader, etc. Now, I'm not so busy. This month's selection was Under this Unbroken Sky by Shandi Mitchell.

This is a very good book, but very depressing. I'm hoping the book that's chosen tonight is a bit lighter.

After school today, my friend Becky and I were having a conversation about book club. It went something like this:
Becky: So, what was your book for this month?

Me: Under this Unbroken Sky by Shandi somethingorother

Becky: Was it good?

Me: yeah, but it was depressing

Becky: So, what do you do at book club? Ask one another comprehension questions about the book?

Me: haha No, we sit and say what we liked about it, what we didn't like about it and then we eat.

Becky: So, book club is really a code word for getting together with friends and eating.

Me: And your point is?

Have you read any good books lately?

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Many Flavors of Friendship

The Man claims that a certain social networking site is evil, so he won't join. The Boy and I each have an account and we have fun reconnecting with friends, chatting, etc. There are two specific reasons I use the site, one is catching up with old friends from high school, college, the Navy days, etc. and the other is playing a certain dice game. I spend about an hour a day on the site, but some days I just sign in, check status updates and sign off, depending on how busy my 'real life' is that day.

Last night, I signed on and there was a friend request. I clicked on it and it was from my bff from elementary school! I had searched for her on the site, but didn't know her married name, so I couldn't find her. She has the same eyes and smile and I'm confident in saying that I'd know her anywhere! Would I have ever 'seen' her again if not for this site? Who knows! But I'm so happy she found me! She came to school for the first time in 4th grade. On the first day of school, I looked over at her and asked if she wanted to be locker mates....and the rest is history. She only stayed for 4th and 5th grade, but we were besties while she lived there. She even came to visit me in VaBeach after we both got married, but I hadn't heard from her since then...until last night! :)

I have caught up with high school friends, college friends, friends from when The Man was in the Navy that have been scattered near and far, family, and local people who are in my life right now. The most controversial? My online friends who I've known and cherished for 10 years now. (If you want to call them 'controversial! I just call them friends!)

I have a core group of friends that I met online and some of them even "in real life" to whom I'm very close. When I moved to Farm Country, I was a stay at home mom. I volunteered at The Boy's school, but I was having a very hard time meeting people. So, I turned to AOL and started chatting about what was for dinner on there. It has morphed through the years and now my core group of friends and I have our own private message board online. It's like sitting with a cup of coffee and chatting with all of your best friends at once. We talk about everything...cry together, rejoice together, cheer for one another, are proud of our children's accomplishments as if they were our own, etc.

Before you start to feel sorry for me by saying, "oh the poor thing only has 'imaginary friends'", let me emphasize that these people are real and I do have friends in this town. Plus, the person I've been friends with the longest, besides The Man, lives about 90 minutes away. We don't see one another very often, but when we get together it's like we've never been apart. We met when our guys were in boot camp and we became pen pals for support and then became one another's life support during the long deployments. Our husbands are best friends, our boys are friends, so that makes it so nice when we all get together. We talk on the phone on occasion and she's the reason I started this blog. :)

And, let's talk about The Man, shall we? I can't remember a time when I didn't know him. Our families attended the same church when we were babies, so we met in the church nursery. We were in the same homeroom from third through sixth grade and then remained friends all through junior high and high school. We didn't start dating until he joined the Navy and I went to WVU. Talk about doing everything the hard way! We had a long distance relationship and probably saw one another about 30ish days out of the year we dated. My dad even took our family on a mini vacation to see him when The Man was stationed in Portsmouth because the ship was in dry dock. What a dad, right?

I have friends that I've met through the Navy scattered all over the country and it's so nice to catch up on one another's lives. The friends I've met because of the Navy became my family. It's difficult to explain the bond we had and I haven't experienced anything like it since. You learn to depend on one another when husbands are deployed....and suddenly things like the water valve to the toilet has been chewed by the dog from hell and your bathroom becomes flooded into the kitchen below, so you call your friend, who also is a Navy wife whose husband is deployed, screaming, and she tells you that while she feels bad for you, she isn't a plumber so call the maintenance man; and then you have to call your instructor and tell her why you can't come to class that day... or the dog from hell locks you out of your own home, while you're outside talking to a Navy wife and her husband who are visiting, so that friend's husband has to remove the sliding glass door to let you back into your own home, and then you suddenly feel very vulnerable because anyone can break in just by removing the sliding glass door.... or your car gets stolen right from in front of your townhouse and you have to go to court and miss work just to see some juvenile delinquents get a slap on the wrist, so you call a friend for comfort.....not that I'd know anything about any of these things....just making general conversation....ok....these things did happen to me during different deployments.

I've said this before...people and situations mold us into the people who we have become. My life is richly blessed because of my friends. (But, I could have survived my life without the dog from hell!)

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Precious Time

I took the day off to spend with The Boy today. He had a doctor appointment and while he's old enough to go by himself, I wanted to spend time with him. His doctor is in another town, which is about 40 minutes from home, so we had plenty of time to catch up and have wonderful conversations. We roamed the mall before his appointment and then afterward, we went on the obligatory lunch date.

Our relationship has morphed through the years. Yes, I'm still his mother and am still here to offer him guidance, support, advice, love....but I've also become a friend. It feels so good to be able to talk about many different things, tease one another, joke around, say swear words...yeah...we cuss.

My spring break is in a few short weeks. I'm going to my hometown to see my mother. But, on the way to see her, I'm stopping in The Boy's college town to meet his fraternity brothers, tour his house, and to take him and a friend to lunch. I'm looking forward to seeing him in his new surroundings and to meeting his friends.

No, I'm not a helicopter mom.... I'm just a mom who is enjoying every moment and every stage.

Monday, March 1, 2010


The boy and I at Thanksgiving

It's been a few days since my last post. Up until recently I have been a pretty faithful gets in the way sometimes, right? The Boy is home right now and I suddenly don't have as much time on my hands.

I promise to get with the groove soon. I'm loving this blogging thing too much to give up now! ;)