Friday, April 27, 2007

Wedding Photos

I have finally posted just about all of the pictures from this past weekend on Flickr. Sorry--but between the three of us we had hundreds of pictures. And I'm sure that there's still more out there. So anyway--for those of you who are friends and family, the photo album is here.

For those of you who aren't, I put some of the better shots under the photo section.

Advanced Ammunition

Princess was pretty tired a few weeks ago and fell asleep while eating. I don't mean putting a cheeseburger down and resting her head, or propping her arm on the table and nodding off. I mean WHILE EATING. As in mid-bite. And then she was out so hard that we stopped the car in the driveway, got out, and snapped pictures with a flash for a few minutes.

I know. We're cruel.

But it is pretty damn funny.

We'll need this anyway to show her boyfriend in 7 8 10 years.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Sacrament Weekend

If you read “Baby Story” on here last year, you’ll remember that SW and I were married by a 250-pound German woman who served as the equivalent of a Justice of the Peace. The master plan was to have a big ceremony once we got Stateside—but Princess was born, I was in C-130 training, and we were living in a small apartment in Little Rock. The big wedding kept getting pushed back, and then Cowboy showed up, and eventually the ceremony dropped off the radar altogether.

This past weekend Princess had her First Holy Communion. For those non-Catholic or Catholic-but-not-following-the-rules types, if you are “living in sin” (as we were because our marriage had never been blessed by the Church) you are not allowed to take Communion. SW is the stricter Catholic of the two of us, and pointed out many years ago that we were persona-non-grata, and as such stayed in our seats during the big chow-down every week. For over eight years.

The Monsignor at our Church pointed out to us, as I already knew, that if we weren’t married we wouldn’t be able to go to the altar with Princess. So we decided to take the plunge, knowing that if we waited for the right time, when everyone could make it, we would probably never do the deed. So, on the day before Princess’s ceremony, we had our own ceremony in the Church. My Dad was the Best Man, SW’s Mom was the Maid of Honor, and Princess and Cowboy helped with the ceremony. SW’s godmother made it, and my Mom held Odie while the ceremony happened.

When it finally came down to it, most of the people that I wanted there were there, except for maybe my sister, SW’s brother, my grandmother and a friend of mine. The ceremony itself was a lot like our marriage has been for eight years—thrown together, rushed, chaotic—but all beautiful and perfect in the end as we made it happen. I have issues with emotions and barely made it through saying my vows. I honestly can’t describe how SW looked—as words can’t describe it.

Honestly I don’t think I would have had it any other way.

We have a weird relationship, SW and I. I think a lot of people would look at our marriage and relationship strangely, as it is definitely not what I would term “standard.” Our lives have been thrown together, rushed, and chaotic since we first signed that paper in Meisenbach, Germany years ago, but we have made it happen. She is simply the best thing that has ever happened to me, even though I myself fail to see that now and then.

Sunday, April 15, 2007


Stumbled upon a new internet time-consumer--but at least this one will take some creativity. Essentially it's a giant world-wide sitemeter project--doing whatever you need to to convince people to click on your link (I think--I've been doing this for about 5 minutes). Anyway...check it out HERE.

Friday, April 13, 2007


When I was a kid, Disney World was a big deal.

People didn't go to Disney like they do now. The first time we went it was more of a once in a lifetime type experience. One year for Christmas, my sister and I opened the last gift to find a tour guide book for Disney World, and we were literally counting down the days until we went three months later. It was an amzing trip.

Over the course of the next 15 years, we went back a bunch of times (four, I think) all the way up through my college years. It got easier, since my grandparents moved to Florida. When I was stationed in Germany, I went to Disneyland Paris. When my wife and I were stationed in Japan we went to Disneyland Tokyo--Princess was two at the time, and Cowboy was just a newborn. We had fun, but it wasn't what it could be since they were so young.

When my unbelieveably busy schedule abruptly ended towards the end of March, I saw our only opportunity to go to Disneyland and quickly bought tickets. I thought it would be fun--three days in Disneyland with Princess, now 7, and Cowboy, who had just turned 6, and Odie. I was hesitant because I didn't think Cowboy would be able to go on many of the rides--but we said screw it and went anyway. On a scale of 1-10 I figured we'd have about a 7 amount of fun.

Boy was I wrong.

On a scale of 1-10, we had about a 22.

I learned that the perfect age to go to Disneyland is around 6 years old. California Adventure is more for the older kids. When we would go to Disney World, the Magic Kingdom was fun--but Epcot rocked. Magic Kingdom was for little kids. People here told me that three days would be plenty enough time to see everything and still spend eight hours a day there.

We got to the park at around 9 am, and, for three days in a row, left at around midnight. For the first day Odie didn't sleep. At all. Didn't cry, didn't whine, just announced when he was hungry. He got to go on around 50% of the rides. The monkies were absolutely perfect angels, for 72 hours straight. I really couldn't figure it out, until the last day.

Walking around that place is like being in a dream. I'm not sure exactly what it was. But for three days, none of us cared about anything else in the world except being together as a family and having fun together. I didn't care about how much we were spending, because from the first minute I felt like it was worth every penny. The park has something weird in the water there--like a perfect happiness that all of the cares in the world were gone for 72 hours. The stars in my kids eyes were so bright that we never wanted to leave. I had more fun as an adult with them than I ever had going to these places as a kid myself.

I could go on forever about the experience we had--but I think one moment summed it up for me.

On the last day we were supposed to leave mid-day and head home. We changed our minds, called and got a room, and stayed until the fireworks at the end. It was an amazing, magical, dazzling show, including a woman dressed up and lit up like Tinkerbell flying around the Castle on a zip-wire. With the music, lights, and crowd around, I stood there holding Princess in one arm, and Cowboy in the other so they could see above everyone's heads.

That's when it occurred to me. They are growing up. Someday I'm not going to be able to do this with them anymore. Someday they're going to be too big for me to hold and watch Tinkerbell fly, watch pirates shoot at each other across the sea, or learn how to be a Jedi and really believe that they had the Force to fight Darth Vader. Sooner than I know, they won't want to do this with SW and I like they do now.

But for one moment, with "When You Wish Upon a Star" playing in the background and the darkness lit up from fireworks overhead, everything in my life was perfect. It was a moment that will live forever in my heart, holding those two, with Odie asleep beside me in his stroller, and my beautiful wife beside him, watching the Castle light up in front of us.

It was one of the greatest days of my life.

New Pictures

I've added a bunch of new photos from the last couple of months, including our trip to Disneyland. Check them out when you can.

Thursday, April 12, 2007


How do I approach this...

To begin with, I'm not an Imus fan. I honestly caught little about him from the morning show clips I would catch on my way to Sportcenter. I tried a couple of times, and just didn't find video of a radio show entertaining. Not offensive, as I've heard he could be--just not entertaining.

Another guy that I'm not a fan of, Bill Maher, jumped into the conversation a couple of days ago on Imus's show and said something that I wholeheartedly agree with--that if this issue is what is keeping the civil rights folks busy then the civil rights movement is going pretty well.

I guess my point is that I don't really understand what the big deal is. I've heard his comments referred to as "racist and hateful." Have any of these people listened to a rap album any time recently? I was going to post some from Notorious B.I.G. on here but they're even too offensive for me. Does that bother me? No--unless you're forcing it down my (and more importantly, my kid's) throat by cranking the stereo so loud that we can't hear our own thoughts. I guess I just didn't find what he said to be considered "hateful." Insulting? Oh yeah--but that's what his show does. No, those girls didn't need to be insulted--they did something that no other team at Rutgers had done in a long time. But I can find a whole lot more offensive things out there to be pissed about that no one seems to notice.

He'll get back on his feet--just ask Howard Stern. I just hate to see someone crucified for something so irrelevant.

Monday, April 9, 2007


Ok, deep breath.

I'm back, for the most part. For those who didn't figure out from earlier posts, I was the assistant chief planner for the trip that the President took to South America a few weeks ago. As a result, my life quickly spiraled into 14 hour days, six days a week, for about 5 weeks. Pretty out-of-control. What was cool was the level of involvement that I had--working with Secret Service and other major commands around the theater, and tracking hundreds of troops and equipment. In the end, it was a great experience--I learned an incredible amount, and my name got plastered in front of a huge number of high-ranking people. Awards followed, accolades, blah blah. In the end, a great (albeit exhausting) experience.

At the same time as all of this is going on, SW and I are valiantly trying to get our house on the market. When you throw 3 kids and a dog into the mix, it's like trying to push sand uphill. Sometimes we actually feel like the kids are trying to sabotage our efforts to get the house into a condition that we can comfortably show the house to others. We're not there yet, but we are close--which we need to be since it went on the market today. This has taken up pretty much all of our time when we're not working. We did manage to go to Disneyland--I'll post more on that later.

Last week I was TDY to Washington, D.C. at the Pentagon for a bunch of meetings. So that took me out of the picture yet again and pushed everything back yet another week.

Lastly, in two weeks Princess is making her First Communion, and SW and I are making our marriage official in the eyes of the Curch by having a small ceremony. When we actually got hitched eight years ago, we had it done quickly by a German JOP, with the intent of having a big wedding once we got Stateside. As we should've known, that never happened, and we've put it off year after year waiting for "the right time." Well, we'd like to take Communion with Princess, so apparently the right time is now.

All in all, a pretty crazy couple of months. I haven't had time to think about what to post, let alone actually write on here. But we have some pretty awesome things coming down the pike--mainly associated with us finally picking up and moving to the other side of the country. Hopefully I'll find the time to write on here as much as I can. Sorry about the ansence.