Life

When the Mets Come Marching In

So I’m an East Coast girl. I was born in Connecticut, and grew up between CT and Pennsylvania. I’ve lived in both North and South Carolina….. I have no idea how I ended up in the Midwest….okay, so it was because of my husband, but still, I’m a total East Coast girl, and as much as I love Illinois, I’m a proud nutmegger (that’s what you’re called if you’re from CT because it’s the “nutmeg state,” which is crazy, since I’ve never been invited to a nutmeg farm).

So when the St. Louis Cardinals (Bill’s team) offered $5.00 MLB tickets, I jumped on the chance. Being he sometimes gets anxiety in crowds, and can have a panic attack, I was fine spending the money to see how he would do, and would not care if we had to leave early.

The good news is he did GREAT (organized seating seems to be better for him than a mass crowed. Some veterans, sadly, can’t do either).

The better news? I was able to get the tickets against the Mets (from New York…which is where my family is from) and the Mets WON!!!!

We had a great family night out, and aside from the unexpected fireworks (which again, Bill did great) we had a blast. (No pun intended). I just wish venues would warn about fireworks! We went to a fair one time and we had no idea fireworks were going to go off. My poor husband freaked out because we were in a metal building and it was just a horrible sound, especially if you’re not expecting it. It reminds him of gunfire.

Side note, next time get seats on the lower level, because we were almost at the top and I don’t do well that high up!

IMG_20180424_152134_248.jpg

Liam had no idea what I meant when I said we were going to watch the Mets, but he was excited to go! Talia wanted to stay home because it wasn’t hockey….she got over it!

IMG_20180424_171630_444.jpg

Once we gave these to Liam, he started practicing throwing balls to the front of the truck…..poor planning on my part, but he was into it!

IMG_20180424_190226_911.jpg

She has a Mets shirt on under there, but insisted on Stingrays over it (hockey).

IMG_20180424_185651_820.jpg

These two are best friends. Let’s see how long this lasts!

IMG_20180424_194204_020.jpg

It took 506 tries to get them all smiling, and Bill looks like he was over it at that point! Still!!!

IMG_20180424_190450_785.jpg

This is how mesmerized Liam was when the Mets took the field! I freaking love this kid!!!

IMG_20180424_181637_197.jpg

Second to the last row from the top….but it was still fun! Look at the arch in the background! (No, I don’t plan to ever go to the top……I’m not a tourist! HA!)

What new thing did you do this week?

What do you do about crowds when your veteran gets nervous?

Advertisements
Military Spouse Life

God Broke My Oven

Yes, you read that right. I feel like my busted oven is God giving me direction. Sound crazy? Well, I get that a lot!

I have always been super active. Even as a child, my parents were called in by my kindergarten teacher so they could ask my parents what to do with me. I wasn’t a bad kid…I just never sat still…for a second. I naturally brought this over to adulthood. I now work full time in hockey (NAHL), I run my yoga studio, I blog, I’m working on my third novel, I have two children/6 dogs/3 cats, and a husband….. I also have a million ideas for other projects. If I had all the time in the world, I would have my own vegan skin care line, and a hockey clothing company supporting youth hockey. I wish there were about 10 more hours in the day.

So I started to pray.

I know I’m a shitty Christian…I’m the first to admit it.

I prayed anyway.

I wanted to know what my purpose was in life. My pastor talks all the time about purpose….so what is mine?

I needed clear direction. I’m 36 years old and I feel like I’m just walking in circles here. These circles are full of half completed projects which are getting me nowhere.

So I continued to pray and try and weed out the things I was not meant to do.

I stopped some of the smaller projects because I just felt they weren’t “it” for me.

Then I decided I should work on my freelance writing and building up my clients, while making room to write novels on the side. I started pitching new clients, but everyone who was interested had a “limited” budget or no budget at all. I could feel this wasn’t what I was supposed to be doing.

Then I debated. Maybe I wanted to go back to baking full time. Maybe I should re-open my bakery. My mom and I had some killer ideas for Biscotti and selling them across the country. I knew where I could use a commercial oven….I thought I should make a go of it.

Then God killed my oven.

I had an order for a cake, and thank goodness it was for a friend….because my oven died half way through the baking process, leaving me a giant sheet cake pan, half-baked.

It was gross. I mean, how do you clean that???

Because I already filed our taxes, I knew we were getting a return. We figured we would use it to buy a new oven.

Then our taxes get held up for 45 days with no explanation from the IRS.

I’m aggravated, but I get the message. It’s not baking.

Then last night I get the whole message.

I was teaching my regular yoga class and just enjoying it. I hate being away from my family at night, but I have cut back to one hour, two nights a week. I contemplate how I can just get everything worked out to teach more. I also want to really get some more education on my chosen area of yoga, which is mental health.

My husband has combat related PTSD and I have Major Depressive Disorder, so naturally, yoga for mental health just clicked with me.

I really started making plans (while on the mat) to keep moving that education forward. I had been granted a scholarship for Warriors at Ease. I can do the class in a self-paced manner, but I need to put the other projects aside and step it up.

Then I started to think about the struggles my husband and I have in our personal/family life, especially with his PTSD…..I was waiting for him to get home last night and while talking to him on the phone, I opened up Facebook (I told you I couldn’t sit still). An advertisement popped up for a teacher training to work with Veterans in St. Louis, MO. It’s only about 90 minutes from me AND it’s over my birthday weekend. How perfect for us to spend the weekend as a family in St. Louis? (Here’s to hoping the Blues are home that weekend for pre-season!)

It seemed too perfect…and it seems maybe between the oven breaking, the desire to only write novels and closed freelancing doors, this was the answer.

I suppose it’s too soon to say, though I also found another online free training for businesses who work with veterans just on accident last night.

I ran all of this by my mom who also believes all these things are happening because I am faithfully asking for God’s help (but remember I already know I’m a shitty Christian) so sometimes it seems like he should not have the time or desire to answer me….but I guess I can start on this path and find out!

Life

The Love of a (Great) Grandmother

I love my grandmother like you wouldn’t believe! She’s a strong, hard working, caring person, and I just love her to death. I apparently was a complete shit-head to her growing up because she thought a box of musical “equipment” as we shall call it, for my children, was necessary.

Let’s back up.

Over Christmas break we stayed at my dad’s house for a few days. He has a player piano, the type you put the music in and it plays itself. My father probably knows three songs he can actually play, but the music coming out of the piano is impressive because it plays off the player music you put in.

Talia thinks this is cool as all hell. My dad likes to put her up on the piano bench with him and pretend to play. At 2 am on Christmas Eve, when Talia could not sleep for whatever reason, she decided to start playing the piano at my dad’s. My mother (who is divorced from my father) and grandmother think this is hysterical. Meanwhile, my father and his girlfriend think giving Talia a drum for Christmas is also cool….

1224162033e.jpg

I’m not really sure what I did to deserve this  but I must have been a miserable teenager and didn’t know it because that drum was filled with other musical instruments as well.

Anyway, last week my grandmother is out with my mother and she sees a keyboard. Apparently she thought Talia needed said keyboard, based on her 2 am escapade at my dad’s house.

0118171641.jpg

Talia LOVES this thing (apparently Tremor thinks it’s cool, too, as you see in the picture.)

Now look at this picture of my grandmother with Talia and Liam. See how innocent this little, old, Italian grandma looks? Don’t be fooled my friends….

1226161709d.jpg

Not to leave anyone out, my grandmother got something for Liam as well. Here’s where life fell apart last night.

Having to work in the morning (yes, I’ve gone back to work, but that is a whole other post), I was less than happy when Liam decided to wake up in the middle of the night and Bill just would not wake up. I climb over Bill and spend a great deal of time trying to get Liam back to sleep. The toy my grandmother bought him is in the crib with him, so I turn it on. It lights up on the “screen” but it also projects an image onto the ceiling for him to stare at. Liam LOVES this. I set the music mode to jungle sounds, and he drifts off to sleep. Success….or so I think.

I leave the timer on 20 minutes thinking it just shuts off like a normal child’s toy. Oh no my friends…..the toy goes off, and then 20 minutes later it comes back on! The picture is back on my ceiling, and the thing is now playing baby freaking show-tunes. Bill is between us, so after I’m startled awake, I now have to climb over a sleeping Marine to get to my kid…and the toy.

0118171626b.jpg

I don’t even have to get the image going the right way for you to see how annoying this is for me.

0117172155.jpg

Here is the image of Liam’s “friends” on the ceiling. You can see how scary they are, right?

There are at least a dozen buttons and switches on this thing and none of them seem to want to shut the whole thing down. Liam is now awake, and we are back to square one….only now Bill is awake and wants to know why the baby is playing Nintendo. I inform him he’s not helping, the baby is not in-fact playing Nintendo, and Bill rolls over so I can be between them. Once I get the thing shut off, Liam doesn’t want to go back to sleep until I get that stupid image of those smug looking cartoons back on the ceiling. ARGH! Dogs are also now awake and wanting to know what is happening, so they all start rotating on and off the bed.

This whole thing carries on for well over an hour. By the time everyone is asleep and happy, my alarm clock goes off. I honestly thought about calling my grandmother at one point, and just giving Liam the phone to scream into. I don’t want her to miss out on all the excitement since she started this whole thing in the first place. (I’m totally kidding, though she has a cell phone now and can’t work it. It would be a wasted call.)

Thankfully there was a counterbalance in the mail today. I was able to sign both kids up for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library. As if we need another reason to love Dolly, she has a program for children through age 5 to receive an age appropriate book every month, free of charge. When Talia was born, our zip code did not qualify, but just before Liam came, our zip code was included, so I signed them both up! Talia has received a few books, and Liam got his first one today! Talia came running and sat down as soon as I started reading!

0118171659d.jpg

As you can see, he thought this was pretty cool! We’ve read it a few times, and I’m sure we will be reading it a lot more before the next book comes. He also got a lot of great books for Christmas, so he won’t be tired of any one book anytime soon!

I’m off to try and get some sleep to make up for the escapades last night. Right now I have the toy in the crib, with the directions close by! The moral of the story…be nice to your parents and grandparents because payback comes in the form of musical instruments and

Military Spouse Life

His Giving Heart

One of the things I love most about my husband is his heart. Saturday, he and my cousin Joey participated in a motorcycle ride to raise money for kids in our area with cancer. When they were done with the main part of the ride, Talia and I caught up with them to follow to the last stop for the after party.

wp-1466965968322.jpg

I don’t know the numbers, but it was cool watching at least 100 bikes pull out.

wp-1466965976017.jpg

One of the local fire departments provided an escort.

wp-1466965948874.jpg

So I got to follow from John’s Island to Wadmalaw Island, South Carolina, (USA).wp-1466965960829.jpg

Beautiful, right? I can’t wait to move!!! Haha!

wp-1466965935875.jpg

These are just SOME of the bikes…..keep in mind, there were a lot of 2 passenger bikes.

wp-1466965941602.jpg

Bill on the left, with Talia (who just woke up) and my cousin Joey. Yes, I know he looks like Corey Feldman….but we are Italian, so I imagine he’s much shorter.

wp-1466965930167.jpg

I have no idea what was so funny here, but everyone had a good time….even if we didn’t know there was a pool and bring someone’s swimsuit. Talia got upset each time she saw the pool. Kid thinks she’s a fish!

wp-1466965923231.jpg

After dinner we headed home……

wp-1466965995471.jpg

with these professional pictures!

wp-1466965911562.jpg

We even had enough time for a bedtime story. Grandma sent a new book and we have only ready it about 200 times!