Sunday, June 28, 2009


Baloney is doing something fun for Sundays... check it out!
I Thessalonians 5:8 But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Flat Balonies (or is that Baloni?) in FL

We took Flat Baloney to FL with us. Actually we took several Flat Balonies. (Baloni - I think would be plural, yes? ) I copied off a Baloney for each girl to color on the way to Minneapolis. They had great fun I might add. Sweet Marissa did a tennis theme. Maren's sort of looked like a Baloney in footed pale green and pink pajamas - not really proper FL beach attire, but cute regardless. Kept them busy until just north of the Minnesota boarder - so I was way happy with that. If you ever take Flat Baloney with you anywhere - she comes to you nekkid, just FYI.

Here's Marissa's Baloney after a game of tennis. She and her tennis pro got really sweaty after their match. She needed to cool off in the shade of a palm tree on her striped beach towel with some water. She kept asking for something stronger to drink, as is her nature, but I told her to pipe down and behave - this was a family vacation, and it was only 10 AM.

Here she is at the pool, catching some rays, in her teeny weeny red bikini. If you ever read Baloney's blog, you know that she is a red HAWT, Okie Mama. It's true, she's been nominated and that makes it official. HAWT, I tell you.
Who wore it better? Baloney or Kim?

Yeah, I thought so too... (is that butt for real?) FB is way HAWTTER.

She finally flagged down a waiter and got her something stronger to drink. That Flat Baloney...

And here she is... oh wait a minute, that's Amy, the turtle from the Nature Center. Amy, how did you get in there. Oh, you were looking for a waiter too , huh? It was pretty hot that day.
At the ocean, hmmm, she must have gotten too much sun, her face is starting to peel.

So thanks for joining us Flat Baloney! You were a hit! The Princess Maren asked me at least 5 times on the flights home if I had another Flat Baloney for her to color - she unfortunately left hers in the barf bag on the flight from Minneapolis to Charlotte, me thinks. Next time, I'm just gonna take along a whole passel of 'em. Thanks, Baloney, for the fun!! Now I am going to go to bed with the Oscar Meyer Bologna song in my head. My Baloney has a first name....

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Anniversary, Baby!

Another fun thing that happened on our trip, besides the ocean and the sea turtles, was the Captain and I celebrated our 12th anniversary! Well, actually we checked into our room, took a sunset walk on the beach, while Maren convinced us how the ocean was just not for her. Then we fell into our nice king sized bed after a long day of traveling non-rev, probably snoring in unison as befits a 12th anniversary celebration. Here's the card I gave him.

Here's a tip for bride's to be. Pick an obscure American holiday, one that might get mentioned in passing, but not many people make a big deal out of it, and then get married on that day. You know, like Columbus Day or say, Flag Day. Flag Day works great! DJ might mention it on the radio, your hubby might be driving around town and notice all the flags and think oh that's right, it's our anniversary. The Captain has not once forgotten our anniversary in 12 whole years. Actually, I may be more likely to forget than he would, so that road runs both ways.

I was trying to think of a song that would adequately describe our marriage, and a few came to mind. For example, the chorus of the Grand Old Duke of York.

And when they were up, they were up, up, up,
When they were down they were down,
And when they were only halfway up,
They were neither up nor down.

I feel like we spend a lot time in that weird transition phase of being neither up nor down in our marriage. We are either waiting for the Captain to get home, or getting ready for him to leave again. Neither up nor down. Not really anniversary song material though.

Then there is the new Kelly Clarkson song, My Life Would Suck Without You. What a horrible song title, but it is a great song to put on your iPod and walk to. Have to go about 4.2 MPH to keep the beat - a real calorie roaster for sure- and as usual, I digress. Though I hate the title, the chorus has some truth to it and really, my life would suck without him.

Because we belong together now (yeah, yeah)
Forever united here somehow (yeah)
You've got a piece of me,
And honestly,
My life would suck without you.
Of course you would have to belt that out like Kelly (I would love to be able to sing like that for just an hour or so - just to see how it feels) and have a good techno-dance beat (and don't forget the yeah yeah's) going to make that work, so then I came up with this one.

We had the opportunity to hear Brandon Heath in concert in March and this was one of the songs he played and I thought it would be a perfect song for a wedding. Since we have already done that, I deem it the perfect song for an anniversary. It's called Love Never Fails. See? It works doesn't it?

One of the lines that I like is love is a river that flows through. Have to admit that I do a less than stellar job of loving the Captain sometimes. I try, but there are times when I do feel I have failed - miserably. The hope that this song gives me is that Christ already has that covered. Christ's love is the river that flows through. There is someone doing a better job with this love thing than I am, and I know that will sustain, nourish, and protect us and keep us going strong for another couple decades or so. Even when things are neither or up nor down or just generally suck. I stuck it on the playlist if you want to have a listen.

Love is not proud
Love does not boast
Love after all
Matters the most
Love does not run
Love does not hide
Love does not keep
Locked inside
Love is the river that flows through
Love never fails you
Love will sustain
Love will provide
Love will not cease
At the end of time
Love will protect
Love always hopes
Love still believes
When you don’t
Love is the arms
that are holding you
Love never fails you
When my heart won’t make a sound
When I can’t turn back around
When the sky is falling down
Nothing is greater than this
Greater than this
Love is right here
Love is alive
Love is the way
The truth the life
Love is the river that flows through
Love is the arms that are holding you
Love is the place you will fly to
Love never fails you
Love you Honey!

Friday, June 19, 2009

...In Margaritaville

Well, we made it. We took a semi-extended vacation to sunny and hot (and man, was it sunny. And hot.) Florida last week, and it was wonderful. We stayed at South Seas Resort on Captiva Island as a result of a lucky Internet search and we were not disappointed.

I'll have to admit, I was nervous. We fly for free which is great since the Captain's airline contracts with US Airways/America West so anywhere they go, we can go too - hypothetically. We also fly non-rev, which is not so great. Non-rev stands for non-revenue producing passenger. Non-rev also stands for nervous Nellie IA Pilot Wife. We get on after all the paying customers do and take whatever seats happen to be left. We are the bottom feeders, the scavengers, the senseless drivel of all airline passengers - speaking of senseless drivel - sorry got a little carried away.

Anyhoo, great for the pocket-book but it wreaks havoc on my nerves. All last week we were watching the available seat numbers wither away and I was having heart palpitations - calmly. The Captain said I hid my anxiety well. I personally think it was the Dramamine - but that is a whole 'nother post.

So why Florida? Hot, muggy, Florida in June? Well, my passport had expired, so Mexico was out, and besides that, many things can be tolerated when only steps away from an ocean. Also, I had gone to Florida with my family on our last family vacation and had many fond memories. Mostly, we wanted the girls to see the ocean and we wanted to see them see the ocean. We were not disappointed. Their reactions were as different as their God-given personalities.

Sweet Marissa jumped in feet first, as is her nature. She took to it like a fish takes to well... water - pun intended. She was out there swimming with her Daddy faster than you can say "remember the ocean is salty" but she picked up on that real fast. I think she may have slept out on the beach if we had let her. She dug a deep hole in the sand near the surf which she was quite proud of, until we were told she had to fill it in. See, the sea turtles were coming in to lay their eggs at night and if holes were left on the beach, they might get stuck and not be able to lay their eggs and get them covered properly. She filled that hole in faster than you can say "be kind to the mama sea turtles". She was amazed to see a nicely marked out "nest" the next day close to where we were the day before. The mama had done a great job of gently rounding it out and patting it down, and they marked it out with more yellow tape than a murder scene. She was glad she had filled in her hole.

Princess Maren, however had a different response, as is her nature. Let's just say if all the ocean were poured into a puddle at her feet, Princess Maren would politely step right over it. She was not impressed with the sand - too dirty. Not impressed with the water - too salty. Not impressed with the shells - too sharpy. Nothing was just right in her book. I do think she appreciated the beauty of the sunsets though, and would occasionally meander down to supervise Marissa's excavation site. What can I say? Am I surprised? No amount of coaxing, cajoling, pretty darn close to frank manipulating would get her into that ocean. Maren's will is that big.

Here's the IA Pilot Wife, with all the world at her feet and the curve of the earth in the background. It's good to be Queen for a day, or even for a sunset.

What is it about the ocean? What is it that smooths out the rough edges of your life and puts things into perspective? For a girl born on the plains of the Midwest it is a beautiful and magical place. It is big and vast and we are so tiny and speck of sand small. I fear it, yet I am still drawn to its beauty. We can only see the surface and marvel at it, yet all its mysteries are gathered fathoms below. I personally like the ocean very much. God did a great job creating the ocean.

Maybe when we retire, I will be one of those brown leather satchel skinned white haired ladies. The Captain will play golf and I will ride my bike with the big swoopy handlebars down to the beach and leave with my basket full of the oceans choice shells of the morning. Tourists will look at me and think that I am odd. The girls will come to visit with their families -well, Marissa will for sure. We'll see about Maren. To be continued...

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Wasting Away Again ....

I am posting this post just to say that I did. I am sitting on a balcony with a view of some palm trees, drinking a Diet Dr. Pepper, smelling the salty breeze coming off the ocean, in my swimming suit. The IA Pilot Wife life is good. Wish you were here.

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Clean Machine or the DHS Report. You Choose.

Someone should report me to the Bad Momma Bureau. I fear I have taken advantage of my oldest child. BUTTTTT, she did say she was bored (Already? Are you kidding me?) The basement was really dirty. She too must have some of the weird Dutch gene lying latent deep inside her that I need to awaken within her.

Last fall we got a new vacuum. Not for my birthday or anniversary or even Christmas(remember that meat thermometer, honey? Nuf said. ) Just felt the old Oreck had paid its dues, and so I bought a Kenmore brand that came highly ranked from Consumer Reports. (The Captain likes Consumer Reports, so I knew that would increase the likelihood of me getting a new vacuum. Worked like a charm.) Anyhoo, it's given name is the Kenmore Progressive Upright Vacuum with Inteli-clean System in Slate Blue (but we just call it the vacuum for short) and it has this little sensor on it that lights up red when the floor is "dirty" and it then turns back to green after it is "clean". I personally think it's sort of hokey, but after showing it to Sweet Marissa (why didn't I think of this earlier), she thought it was the greatest thing since sliced bread.

She spent about 2.7 hours vacuuming the basement.
Remember, we have some serious seventies action orange shag down in the basement. She would go for a bit, suck up some Barbie fodder, and then stop and wait until the light turned green again. After about 40 minutes, I took pity and did stop her and tell her she really didn't have to wait on the intelli-sensor to do its thing, but she was in her element. Lights, gadgets and gizmos are her deal. I think she gets that from the Captain. As a baby she had a flashing lights and drive you out of your mind noisy Fisher Price cell phone toy that was her absolute favorite. She has always had a knack for the computer. She consistently kicks my hiney in Mario-Kart (the Captain's too I might add) and sometimes I even secretly practice after the girls have gone to bed. Secretly.So, I think I have the softest, cleanest, shaggiest, intelli-sensored, orange carpet in the tri-state area. AND, I am pretty sure Sweet Marissa will not complain of being bored again this summer vacation. Don't worry, I paid her well. She is saving her allowance for a NintendoDS. Go figure.
Now, gotta go practice the Mario-Kart. Watch out Rainbow Road!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

You Should Be Dancing...

Oh my, oh my, what a week again. Isn't this supposed to be summer vacation? Aren't I supposed to be sleeping in, hanging out at the pool catching a good dose of skin cancer with some baby oil and my friends listening to Prince and Van Halen? Oh wait, I am an adult now. I have to work and be semi-responsible. Oh dear.

So between strained necks, getting ready for the dance recital, Grandmas falling in doorways, getting ready for the dance recital, numerous cardiac rehab referrals (enough with the chest pain, people), getting ready for the dance recital, teaching ACLS for the first time, and oh, did I mention getting ready for the dance recital, it has been a busy week and a half. The blog has been ignored - not for lack of material, just time.

Dance recital. I really have a love-hate relationship with the girls dance recital. Let's make that a HATE-LOVE relationship, because first I really HATE it. I HATE the preparation, the make-up, the costumes, (and where are the gloves and the hairbow and the tan tights layered under the pink tights and the ballet shoes, versus the tap shoes and where did your jazz shoes go?) I am not good at this - not one of my strengths to say the least. Both the girls are in dance, so that makes four costumes and their various and sundry accessories to keep track of. I realize I shouldn't whine because there are moms with three daughters in dance with costumes to the nth degree (pass that woman a xanax and a gold star, please), but it really seems to throw me for a loop or at least a skip-ball-chain.

Then comes the part I LOVE. Seeing Sweet Marissa and Princess Maren up there on stage makes it all worth it. I sit a little straighter, smile a little bigger, and I am just so darn blessed to be their mother - even if I am a somewhat disorganized and frantic one during dance week. They both LOVE the recital and totally get caught up in all the excitement. As we were pulling out of the parking lot Friday night after that night's recital was over, Marissa sighed, "Life is great, isn't it mom." Yes, honey, it sure is.

I firmly believe that world peace could be attained by having all current world leaders attend one pre-dance number. Three and four year olds in tutus and tuxes? Resistance is futile. It is too precious. Then there is that number danced to the Steven Curtis Chapman song "Cinderella". It is sweet and touching, and THEN, the girl's fathers come out and finish the number with their daughters. I am a slimy ball of sobbing mush up in the upper right balcony. Thank goodness they keep it dark in there. Here's the song via YouTube if you want to check it out. See if you can make it through without tearing up. You'll wish you were in a dark balcony too, guaranteed.

I try to keep it in perspective. These are the days. Like Steven says, all too soon they will be gone. I shouldn't let a forgotten pair of tube socks to go with the jazz costume with the tan tights and the jazz shoes and the pink hair bow ruin it, should I? Sorry Marissa. Momma loves you.

Until next year, then. Maybe.

(All photos by Mauer Photography)