Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Is it possible that I have a "man cold"?

This pretty much sums up my current state:


Monday, November 29, 2010


I still have a couple more weeks to finish up my hours for my library internship, but the final project and supervisor evaluation are all due on Wednesday. For the final project, I had a choice between writing yet another essay or doing a short visual presentation about my experience. I wound up going for the latter and actually had fun doing it. Of course, it sounds like Suzanne Pleshette is doing the voiceover, thanks to my horrendous cold, but I still think it turned out well:

The photos I talk about are both US Army photos from the end of WWII. I had a tough time choosing just those 2 as my samples. It was hard to pass up the picture of the sinking Japanese battleship that was shot through the periscope of the sub that fired the fatal torpedo. And what about the squadron of pilots who commissioned a dog as a major and made him their mascot? In the end though, I loved these 2 the best. Let's have a closer look, shall we?

I like this one because the soldier and the sailor look so young and fresh-faced and the British woman looks so old, but they all look positively, radiant happy:

I was as taken by the back of this photo as I was by the front:

The back says:

LONDON, ENGLAND: Two American soldiers in the London newspaper office of the Evening Standard read two issues of the paper 27 years apart which announce the end of war with Germany. Pfc. Earl V. Moore, Linwood Park, Linwood, Pa., left, reads edition of May 7, 1945, which tells of German surrender in World War II, and Sgt. Eddie H. Green,305 Whittier St., Washington, D.C., a veteran of World War I, reads edition of 11 November, 1918, announcing signing of the Armistice and the end of first World War.
I kind of wonder if Earl and Eddie (or their families) ever even got to see the picture. It's not like the photographer could just post the pic on their Facebook walls, you know?

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Is November over yet?

Today is definitely one of those days I would skip out on blogging were it not for NaBloPoMo. I have been down most of the day with a horrible cold, so most of my activity has been crawling out of bed for a cup of tea. I didn't even go with Fred to take Mike to the airport.

Mike is on his way back to Tally right now by way of Atlanta. He has one more week of classes and then finals. He should be back here for winter break in 11 days--can't wait!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Dude, where's my car?

These signs in the parking lot at Legends (an amazing shopping center 30 minutes away from us in Kansas City) just crack me up:

Friday, November 26, 2010

Carousel museum

Having young house guests was the perfect reason to head for the C. W. Parker Carousel Museum in Leavenworth today. We learned all about the history of merry-go-round making and saw carousel horses (and rabbits and even a French pig) in a variety of conditions. Our short visit culminated in a ride on a restored carousel from 1913. Annabelle and I opted to ride in the carriage, but Fred and Mike climbed aboard the ponies:

Mike monkeyed around:

All my photos are here:

After the museum, we took some munchies up to the man cave and settled in for an afternoon of football:

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

We have had a lovely, low-key day. It has been downright frigid outside, so I have stayed in. Most of the day we were busy getting ready for our big meal: ham, regular mashed potatoes, cheesy mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, green bean casserole, etc. Michelle and I have gone through most of a gallon of Russian tea.

After dinner, we dragged out some of Mike and Annabelle's old toys. The girls have had a blast putting together the Playmobil fairy tale castle. It has been a long time since we've heard the sound of hands pawing through boxes of plastic bits in search of just the right piece!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

American girls in Kansas City

Fred's brother John and his wife Michelle and their 3 girls are visiting us for the Thanksgiving holiday. Mike and Annabelle and I drove over to Kansas City this afternoon to meet up with them at the new American Girl store there. Mike and John had to fake their enthusiasm:

but the girls had a good time:

Happy birthday to my dad, who missed having a Thanksgiving birthday by one day this year!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Whoa, Nellie!

My friend Laura is visiting from Kentucky, and she took me to an amazing store today. Nell Hill's in Atchison, KS, is packed top to bottom with really cool home decor items. I managed to restrain myself for the most part, but I did have to buy one ornament--a glittery green frog who is holding a Christmas bell:

We ate in our dining room for the first time ever tonight. Mike had his friend's (from left to right) Ben, Mark, and Nolan over to dinner, and we just couldn't fit in the kitchen. It was a fun dinner with lots of joking around and laughing:

Monday, November 22, 2010

Mike's home!

Let the Thanksgiving holiday commence! He will be here until next Sunday afternoon, so almost a whole week. Then 2 weeks later, he'll be back again for the better part of a month. :-)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Nothing to report

I feel like I spent most of today grocery shopping. First Fred and I made a huge commissary run and then a slightly smaller Walmart run. I think I have just about everything I need for Thanksgiving. Mike flies in tomorrow night, and Fred's brother John is coming with his family on Wednesday. Can't wait!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Grease was the word

The third and final performance of Grease was tonight, and it was the best yet! I borrowed a mas macho camera from Mike's friend Mark and took a lot of pictures during the play. Wow, it's hard to take good pics during live theater! This will give you an idea though of what a fun show it was:

After the show, I persuaded Annabelle to slip into her circle skirt one last time for a picture:

She's at IHOP right now celebrating with her castmates.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Grease is the word

We just got back from night 2 of the Leavenworth High School production of Grease. It's a great show, and Annabelle has really enjoyed digging in and getting involved right away in the drama department. I took some video, but I'm not sure how good it will be. Annabelle is on stage mostly in act 2, by which point the children behind us were in dire need of a trip to the lobby. I'm afraid probably what you'll hear is a lot of whining followed by a woman stage-whispering, "Hush! It's almost over!" But here she is after the show in her costume from the song "Beauty School Dropout."

Perhaps tomorrow night I'll send my camera backstage with her so that she can get a picture of herself in her circle skirt I made. Oh, I know! Even if the video doesn't work, I should be able to at least grab still photos from it.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Parade rest

Last week, Mike and his AFROTC detachment marched in Tallahassee's Veterans' Day parade. Mike sent me this picture of a couple of his friends and him:

Lookin' sharp, fellas!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Phoning it in again

Oops! I almost forgot to blog today. It was a cold, rainy day, and I spent most of it working on an indexing deadline. Looking forward to Fred's office Thanksgiving tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Phone blogging

Wow, I haven't posted by phone in ages! I am riding home from the furniture store now and wanted to give an update. Nebraska Furniture Mart could not have been easier to deal with. They are exchanging the giant bed for a more normal-sized one, refunding the price difference, and comping the delivery charge. We will be devoted NFM customers for life!

Monday, November 15, 2010

New (big!) furniture

I was going to wait to post pictures of our new bedroom furniture until I had a chance to really make up the room. I'm in too much shock, however, over the height of the bed, so I'm just posting these photos now and will post a shot of the finished product later on.

So . . . if you ordered this bed, would you expect the salesman to tell you that you are going to need a ladder to get in it???

Poor Ginger! I'm not sure how she'll get up there.

Here's the rest. This is my dresser, kind of hiding behind the BIG FREAKIN' BED:

LOL, how 'bout this one for perspective?

And Fred's dresser:

On the positive side, we wanted drawer space, and we do have that.

UPDATE: Oh, look! Put on the bedding, and the headboard completely disappears:

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Guys' weekend

Sounds like Fred and Mike had a great time together in Tallahassee this weekend. I understand that the football game Saturday night was "epic." Here's a pic of the 2 of them, taken on Fred's Blackberry:

It's hard to believe the semester is almost over. Mike will be home for Thanksgiving in a little over a week and then again 2 weeks later for winter break.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Football worth watching

I wrote last fall about the progress Fort Knox High School's football team had made. Apparently good things are still happening there. Watch the following clip, but you might want a tissue handy for the end:

Friday, November 12, 2010

Girls gone mild

Fred is in Tally for the weekend, visiting Mike. They are going to a basketball game tonight and a football game tomorrow night. Meanwhile Annabelle and I are living the bachelorette life.

Every Friday afternoon we stop at a cute little local bakery and pick up brownies for a snack. Today I splurged and got brownies AND cupcakes, and we ate chocolate for supper. We also left the plates in the sink for tomorrow.

We were going to go to the on-post theater tonight to see a movie, but it is POURING out there. We walked the dog and came home drenched and decided our PJs were calling to us. So instead of going to the movies, we are watching TV in the comfort of our own home.

The rest of the weekend? Doing lunch, shopping a little, and doing homework (Annabelle) and working on a freelance project (me).

Yes, we are truly wild women!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Uniformly handsome (again)

I do love me some men in uniform! Here are some photos in celebration of Veterans' Day.

It appears that service to country runs in the family! Here is my grandfather with my father when Dad was just a wee tyke:

Then Dad in flight school in the Marine Corps back in the day:

As you can see, Dad hasn't outgrown his love of planes:

And then we've got Fred's family. There aren't a lot of photos of Fred's dad from his Army days, but he served in Germany during the 1950s. We are pretty sure that Don is third row, third from the right in this one:

In this one, we think he is second row, third from the left:

Then of course there's Fred! I have so many pictures of Fred in uniform that it's kind of hard to choose. These are a couple of favorites though. This was at a drop zone at the Law Day festivities at Fort Bragg back in 1998:

This remains my all-time favorite family photo, the day he returned from his deployment to Iraq:

And then last but not least, we have Mike, who is marching with his AFROTC detachment in Tallahasse's Veterans' Day parade today:

Hug a veteran today! (I know I will!)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Virtual tour: foyer and living room

One of the frustrating things about getting settled in a new house is how lots of things wind up ALMOST done but getting any one room all the way done seems nearly impossible. We did the impossible last weekend and put the finishing touches on the foyer and living room. Wanna see? Walk this way . . .

You enter our home through a vestibule, really kind of a walk-through coat closet. We put up a quote that seems pertinent both to Kansas and to Army life in general:

Enter through the front door and turn right at the quote, and you will go through yet another door and find yourself standing in our freakishly large foyer:

And here is the living room:

I'm hoping to get the rest of the main floor done by Thanksgiving (except for the kitchen curtains, as my sewing machine needs to go into the shop for some work).

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Mr. Stinky tries again

Mr. Stinky has yet another potential bloom. He had one a couple months ago that I never bothered posting, and it dried up and fell off before it ever opened. Then about a week ago, he popped out with 2 more. One of these took off, and the other one withered away. I'm hoping this will be the blossom that finally opens. Not that I really NEED a flower in my kitchen that smells like carrion; I'm just tired of being thwarted. Also, one of his arms is turning yellow. I'm not sure if I should cut it off, but I hesitate to do anything while he's trying to flower:

Monday, November 08, 2010

Halloween leftovers

I've been watching one of the pumpkins in our front yard gradually disintegrate and was pretty sure a squirrel was enjoying it. I caught him in action through the living room window yesterday:

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Skirting the issue

I love to sew. Sometimes I wonder why I don't sew more often. Then I try, and suddenly I remember:

Still, I did manage to make Annabelle's skirt for Grease this afternoon:

As you can see, it's a Harvey skirt instead of a poodle skirt.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Jamaica photo book

I just remembered that I never shared the photo book I made of our trip to Jamaica this past summer. Now that the weather is cooling off, I'm ready to go back!

Click here to view this photo book larger

Friday, November 05, 2010

Weekend to-do list

1. Replace Eddie's missing claw covers. We need to get back on that now that we've got the new sofa. Speaking of . . .

2. Take a picture of the new sofa to show you.

3. Work on indexing projects.

4. Make poodle skirt (actually a kitty-cat skirt) for Annabelle for her Grease costume.

5. Get to the grocery store and plan some meals. Pizza tonight, Polish sausage last night, and rotisserie chicken the night before that. It's probably time I actually cooked something.

6. Finish painting our room (that's actually on Fred's list).

7. Continue setting up my office. We swapped our bedroom out for my office, and I love the new arrangement. The new bedroom is super quiet, and the new office gets the morning light.

Let's see how much actually gets done!

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Lucky cat

Annabelle called me at 6:45 this morning from the bus stop to tell me that she and her friend Christina had found a cat that had almost gotten hit crossing the street. He appeared to have a broken leg, the bus was there, and they didn't know what to do. I told her to hang onto the cat and sit tight. I hopped out of bed and pulled on pants, shoes, and a jacket and ran out into the darkness to see what was going on.

The girls and I brought the kitty into our house, where they held him in the kitchen while I ran to the basement for our cat carrier. When I got a closer look at him, I could see that he had his front leg caught through his collar, which was why he had been limping. I grabbed scissors and cut the collar off. The kitty didn't need any encouraging to go into the carrier, so we loaded him up and took off.

I dropped the girls off at school and took the cat to the vet here on post. He had a rabies tag, so I figured we had a good shot at finding his people. They scanned him at the vet for a microchip, and sure enough he had one (required for pets here on post), so they were able to call the owners to let them know to come pick up their cat.

It turns out the kitty's name is Tigger. Not the most original choice, but I have a red dog named Ginger, so who am I to cast stones? I hope that Tigger's owners are a lot more careful in the future about making sure that he stays inside!

I promised the girls I would get a picture of him at the vet's:

When I got home, the sun was just coming up, and the holiday lights were on in the park across the street from my house. I snapped a quick shot, but it doesn't do the scene justice:

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Uniformly handsome

Mike has an Air Force ROTC scholarship for college, and for the first couple months of the fall semester it was looking like it was Not His Thing. In fact, when he came home for a visit in mid-October, he sounded pretty certain that he would be dropping it for the spring semester. But then somewhere in the past couple weeks it started being a little more enjoyable, and now he thinks he will give it another semester before he makes up his mind. (The first year carries no payback option should he decide it's not for him.)

So this may be the first of many photos of Mike in uniform, or it might be the only one you'll ever see:

Either way, I think he's a handsome young man with a lot on the ball, and his dad and I couldn't be prouder of him!

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Paying respects

Word went out yesterday asking Ft. Leavenworth residents to line the main road through the post with flags for the funeral procession of SFC Charles M Sadell, who died last week after being injured in Afghanistan earlier in October. The procession was set for 2 p.m., and I thought I would have plenty of time to get home and get my flag if I left the library at my normal time, 1:30. The plane carrying his body was early, however, and they were already blocking off the street by the time I headed out. I took back roads, left the car on the other side of the park, and made it home by foot with just a few minutes to spare. All those flags were an impressive sight:

Monday, November 01, 2010

Back to our regular programming

Tap tap tap . . . is this thing still on? So, long time no talk to, huh? I'm not really sure what to make of my recent posting malaise, the bloggy blahs, you might call it. I have participated in NaBloPoMo for the past few years though and didn't want to miss it this year. Maybe writing every day will jump start my enthusiasm for blogging, no?

So, let's see, what has been going on in the past couple of weeks? Mike made a weekend trip home from college and enjoyed several days of pampering. Annabelle is in Grease at her school, and rehearsals are keeping her super busy. Fred appears to like his job and keeps normal hours for the first time in forever. And I am finishing up my last month of working at the library here on post and getting set up to switch over to a law school library for next semester. Graduation in May! Woo hoo!

Annabelle's school did a series of novice plays at the beginning of the year, kind of a way for new kids to break into the program. She was in Family 2.0, a one-act absurdist play that reminded me a lot of Edward Albee's The American Dream. I recorded it using the video settings on my still camera, because apparently my video camera is such a dinosaur that the PX no longer sells tapes for it. I'll need to get something better before Grease, but here's what I did manage to get:

You can follow along with the script here, but I warn you that it is raunchy with a capital RAUNCH. They tamed it down quite a bit for the school performance.

So anyway, back to the blog. I am going to post every day this month, even if it is nothing more than my Facebook status, which is now:

"Bonnie Boyd Taylor needs recommendations from her Leavenworth peeps: dentist and dog groomer, preferably not the same person. (Then again, that would be awfully convenient!)"