Thursday, December 30, 2004

We must have been good

Nathan made it home safe and sound.

He's Home

We were able to find the perfect Christmas tree before Santa made his visit.


We must have been good this year.

Happy New Year!

Saturday, December 25, 2004

'Twas the Night Before Christmas

Not a creature was stirring

The children were nestled all snug in their beds

Mama in her kerchief andI in my hat had just settled down for a long winter's nap.

I sprang from my bed

Away to the window I flew like a flash

and 8 tiny reindeer

On Dasher, On Dancer

His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry.

Happy Christmas to all, and to all a Good Night!

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Maybe the mice have run off with the scissors...

I am trying to do a wee bit of sewing, but all of the scissors in the house have disappeared. Somewhere around here I have 2 pairs of good sewing scissors, 2 pairs of scissors that used to be sewing scissors but are no longer sharp, and 6 or so kid scissors. I can only find 1 pair of blunt-nosed, green-handled kids scissors. They are great for snipping strings, but I NEED some real scissors. I will even settle for the worn out ex-sewing scissors.

In other news, I noticed mouse droppings in the garage last week, so I set out a trap. The next day the trap was GONE! That make me feel a little sorry for the mouse - I could imagine it running around with a trap on its tail. There were no new droppings this week, so I thought maybe the mouse made his escape (with the trap.) Yesterday, I let Sam into the garage to see if he might have some talent as a mouser, he did not catch a mouse, but he seemed really interested in the band-saw. Today I asked my neighbor to come check out the garage and help set a couple more traps. I also asked him to move the saw so I could sweep up any droppings around it. He found the mouse. Dead. With the trap on his arm. I hope that means no more mice, but I have a feeling there was more than one. I think I will let Nathan take care of the mouse problem when he gets home.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Christmas PJ's

In true McBride form, it is now the time to make your Christmas Eve pajamas. One year mom made all 7 of us girls matching red and blue striped nightgowns with matching stocking caps. I stole a couple from mom a few years ago, and just this weekend Hannah wore one as "Papa" in a production of T'was the Night Before Christmas. (Very funny - I will have to post pictures.)

I have the flannel (rather nice $2 a yard walmart plaid) for this years pj's and I need to decide if I will make nightgowns or pajama pants for the girls. Emily will only wear nightgowns, but I think Hannah would prefer pants, and Sydney will want whatever Hannah has. I love nightgowns, I think they are so cute on the girls, but pants are faster. John, of course, will get pants. How fun. I think I will go wash the flannel now.


Typhoon was downgraded to a tropical storm, and Nathan will be coming home as scheduled...yipee!!!

Hannah and I think it is because of our fasting and prayer yesterday. Who knows?

Sunday, December 12, 2004

Delay, Delay, Delay, Delay

Bummer. Some of the guys came home last night, some are coming later this week, but the guys flying home in the B-1's are delayed because of a typhoon near Guam. It seems silly that they don't just land somewhere else on their way home. Isn't that what Nathan is trained to do? Navigate a safe route home? Wha?

The note we received about the delay was rather discouraging. It mentioned that getting home is tricky, they may be home next week, "and that is ONLY if ...... the typhoon goes away, Guam opens back up, Tankers are re-aligned and nothing breaks." We are all a little sad around here, but we are in good spirits. It will all work out. We miss Nathan terribly.

Friday, December 10, 2004

5th Grade Band

Today was the big Holiday Program at school. The sound of 20 kids with wind instruments is unforgettable. The tune of Hot Cross Buns was recognizable, if a little slooooooow. The conductor looked strangely familiar, like Mr. Richichi, maybe that look is a job requirement. They looked so proud when they bowed. To be 10. Anything is possible at 10. Hurray for school music programs!

Thursday, December 09, 2004

So Frustrating

Muy strange how Blogger eats posts. Must be hungry.


I have read a couple of interesting articles and blogs about Iraq lately, and I thought I would link them here.

In his entry: "Rumsfeld Grilled By Soldiers?", Sgt. Missick, a soldier serving in Iraq and at the meeting with Rumsfeld, discusses his view of the visit from Secretary Rumsfeld to the troops in Iraq. He says the media has misrepresented the feeling of the meeting -

One more thing I would like to add is this, not one soldier present asked questions about why we were here, or expressed the sort of anti-war sentiment that Michael Moore led some to believe was prevalent in the military. Rather, the concern was about ensuring we would be supplied with all necessary equipment to accomplish the mission and return home safely

I also read a report about the incredible work of doctors in Iraq, published in the New England Journal of Medicine: Casualties of War - Military Care for the Wounded from Iraq and Afganistan by Atul Gawande, M.D., M.D.H. He says that a far larger percentage of soldiers are surviving their injuries, than at any other time. Thanks, mainly, to great doctors and a system that is set up to move the wounded rapidly to recieve the care they need. There is also a slide show (not for the faint of heart.)

Interested in helping service members this holiday season? Here's a great idea posted by HughHewitt HughHewitt: The number ONE request at Walter Reed hospital is phone cards. The government doesn't pay long distance phone charges and these wounded soldiers are rationing their calls home.

Many will be there throughout the holidays.

Really support our troops --Send phone cards of any amount to:

Medical Family Assistance Center
Walter Reed Medical Center
6900 Georgia Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20307-5001

They say they need an "endless" supply of these -- any amount even $5 is greatly appreciated.

Monday, December 06, 2004

Feels good to feel good

We were sick, sick, sick this weekend. Saturday night was a blur of calls for help, vomit, and icky diapers. Sunday was spent on the couch or in bed. After a good nights sleep, we are all feeling in tip-top shape this beautiful Monday morning. Last night we Lysol-ed down the doorknobs, banisters, lightswitches, toilets, and anything else we could wipe. We also sent the toothbrushes threw a cycle of the dishwasher. Feels good to feel good.

I have been washing sheets all morning (I could not touch them yesterday) and hanging them up to dry. The first blanket I hung out was a little crisp when I hung the second batch out. I checked the weather to see the temperature - 22 degrees F. Hmm. I wonder if the sheets will dry or just freeze? It should warm up into the upper 30's so they will eventually defrost. Also, I almost broke my neck or tailbone while going down the stairs with a wet blanket in my arms. The steps were very icy and slick. I managed to catch myself, but then I slipped again on the way back up. Dangerous.


I am getting Christmas cards together to send out and I have to decide if I am going to enclose a picture of just the kids, a picture of the whole fam at Mt Rushmore, or if we should go all out and have Hannah publish a special holiday edition of the BFN. Must decide today.


List of things I want to get done before Nathan gets home (could be as early as next week - yipee!)

*= I did it!

*Clean out various closets and drawers
Mail out Christmas cards and packages
Gingerbread house
*Hang greenery
Finish up Christmas shopping
Park the van back in our driveway
Paint my bedroom (lets be honest, this is not happening)
Touch up paint around the stairs
Clean the nasty dining room carpet
*Plan sharing times for the rest of the month
Plan Hannah's class Christmas party
Activity Day girl ice cream party
*RSVP piano recital date and time
*Visiting Teaching (I am officially the world's worst VTer. Stink. Must actually go in December.)(* Look at me - I did my Visiting Teaching and it only Dec. 12th - woohooo)
-Put away trampoline for the winter (*no winter here, may as well keep the tramp out)

What am I doing here? I have work to do.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

First Party of the Season

Tonight, the Family Support Center hosted a party for families of Deployed/TDY/Remote service members. We went, and I was shocked to see how many families from just our base are affected by the deployments right now. The place was packed, loads of kids, lots of moms, and even a few dads. I'm sure there were many more families that were not there.

The only other family from the "o" side of our squadron was our Commander's wife. I wonder if it isn't politically correct for Officer's wives to go to these functions. Oh well. I am willing to break out of the mold. We had a fun time. I knew a few of the other families from church and from our neighborhood, so we had people to sit with and talk to.

The clown made Emily nervous, but Sydney was brave and got a balloon for herself and Emily. The Santa was great. He had came complete with his own real beard and white hair. Again, I was worried that Emily would hide behind me, but she went right up to him and held his hand and told him her age. Each of us was given a gift. They were so generous. When I read on the invitation that there would be a gift for each child, I imagined Oriental Trading Company, but these were really nice gifts for every child, and adult, there. They seemed to have the gifts divided up by age and gender. Very thoughtful.

I have a feeling that the gifts were originally tags on an Angel Tree. I can imagine a family taking an angel and reading "10 year old girl" then finding craft supplies and dropping them into a donation box. I'm not sure how I feel about being on the recieving end of that. Kind of strange. We will have to search out a way to give to others this year.

My favorite childhood Christmas memories are of delivering gifts to the Hmong and Laos families in our branch. Filling stockings with an orange in each toe, watching Dad sneak back to the car in his red STANDFORD jacket, listening as a family discovered the treasures on their porch. Good times. Must find a way for our kids to experience that gift.