July 23, 2011

A Happy Saturday Morning

I wake up to the sound of a happy, farty baby and it makes me laugh. After persuading Daddy to rise and shine with us, Emmy gets a bath and wears her tiny Hello Kitty t-shirt with just a big fluffy cloth diaper and cover. Anthony eats a chocolate peanut butter cupcake for breakfast. This girl gets a cup of Eight O'Clock coffee. It's my favorite, and, as we have woken in up Joe and Vanessa's new house, the light is shining in softly through all of the clear, perfectly clean windows. I ask Joe if he got the coffee on buy-one-get-one-free at Publix, and he nods knowingly. It was last winter we had the conversation about checking for bogos on a smartphone before going to the store.

Banana. That's a dairy-free breakfast. Petey doesn't get the banana strings this time, but he's got a backyard to run around in for the day. Vanessa is in her Saturday work clothes -- creased denim slacks with a glossy sheen, grey flats, sweater and a necklace. She'll be back soon, though, before lunch, even. An hour after she leaves Joe, he changes into his big boy onesie, a desert tan flight suit. He's not working all day, either, and reminds us that he gets paid double on weekends now that he's a civilian.

Emmy goes down for her morning nap pretty easily, and I snuggle up to Anthony on the couch. Willie Nelson's Stardust album is on the record player, an easy transition from the classic Bob Marley we just had on. We google how ol' Marley died and think that even if it was legal, we wouldn't smoke weed, would we? Nah, it's just a bad road to travel.

Somehow we end up dancing in the kitchen, and I'm reminded that although there's a baby napping upstairs who needs to be changed, nursed and played with for the rest of the day, and although Anthony's phone could ring at any time with the news that one of his soldiers is in trouble and although we have to go food shopping so that we don't crush Joe's deli meat stash with a single blow, we're still just kids dancing in the kitchen and the rest can wait a minute.

That coffee sure was good.

July 20, 2011

The Real Wives of the U.S. Army

I used to cringe every time I saw a car plastered with pink Army wife stickers. I used to think that I didn't need to tell people that I was a stay-at-home Army wife because they would assume the worst about me. I used to try not to talk about Army stuff with girlfriends in public places, because surely, someone would hear and think "How naive!". I used to hate going in to Commando's by myself in civilian clothes to return unused gear. I used to read military spouse forums online and roll my eyes at the 18-year-old wives who were missing someone they only knew for a few weeks.

When Anthony and I decided that the Army was where God was calling him/us to be, I was enthusiastic and hesitant about what my life would look like. I didn't know that I would meet so many dear hearts who I now consider close friends and confidantes. I don't care how many Army wife stickers or tshirts they do or don't showcase, whether they talk (loudly!) about their husband's work, or how long they've been with their soldier. They are the women that I love and that I am proud to serve alongside.

The many women that I met two summers ago have since moved to Army posts all over the world. Their husbands have deployed, been in training, and one dear wife's soldier has even given his life for his country. They have made new friends at each stop, looked for jobs, packed many a suitcase and waited patiently. And I am thankful to know them.

July 13, 2011

Cowgirl Food

My littlest sister Rebecca is spending two weeks with me. Firstly, because I like her company. Secondly and thirdly, because Anthony is in the field and I can always use the help with Emmy and also because what 16-year-old doesn't need a break from her parents when she's the only one left in the nest?

With my ("this is ground turkey!?!?!?") husband campin' in a tank, Rebecca and I have been experimenting with what Pioneer Woman would call Cowgirl Food. So far we've made chocolate avocado pudding, Caroline's frozen fruit pops, moussaka, pitas with sprouts, spicy ginger-carrot dressing and "fish hash". Fish hash was tilapia that we couldn't wait to dethaw, so we broke it into a million pieces and cooked it all into a pan. Then we ate it with the ginger dressing. And it was good. Super good.

Also, Rebecca changed her first diaper EVER. When I was half her age, I had changed enough diapers to cover two Duggar families. It makes sense, though, as she's the baby of the family and stuffed animals don't really do the #2 thing.

It's been a good week so far.

July 12, 2011

Shark Meat Sandwiches

Vacation time, real honest-to-goodness, two-parent vacation time is coming. I was on the road with Emmy all last week visiting friends and family while Anthony is training. It was tough! Lots of planned driving according to nap schedules, lots of using someone's washer to do cloth diapers, and lots of Arcade Fire's "The Suburbs" on repeat. Ok, that part wasn't tough.

Our destination -- Florida's Gulf Coast -- is truly my favorite place on earth. From Pensacola to Apalachicola, it's just so beautiful, not to mention where I spent almost every other weekend of my childhood.

Anthony and I are letting Papi and Grandmommy hold a two-day summer camp for Emmy while we try to catch sharks, re-enact Kate and Jack on a dinner cruise, and fall asleep on the beach until we turn bright red.

We'll bring back some shark meat for sandwiches.