Monday, July 27, 2009

Vive le Tour!!!!

I am a cycling fan, it's true. I've been watching the Tour de France on tv for the past few years and as I watched the stages each day on tv the thought finally came to me that this should be the year that I finally go watch the tour in person like I've been saying I was going to do for the past few years. I looked into it and I found that on the last day the tour came within four hours of our house so I asked a few friends if they wanted join us and on Sunday we finally went.
We left our house at 8:30 Sunday morning and after a couple of stops to go to the bathroom at let the little kids stretch their legs we arrived in Villeneuve-st-Denis, France. We got there around 12:30 and found a nice shady spot along the side of the road to lay down our blanket. Shortly after we got there the caravan of sponsors came through. It was kind of like a fast moving parade because the cars where decorated and some were trucks with elaborate decorations, but they were moving at about 35mph throwing things out the window at us. It actually was mildly violent when you imagine at keychain being chucked out a window at you at 35mph. Reese and I walked away with a yellow bag and a "king of the mountains" hat (that would be the polka dot hats we're all wearing in the photo, well Reese and her friend Max are wearing the hats that the salami van threw out) which we were very excited about. After the caravan rolled by we ate our picnic lunch and let the kids play while we observed the other tour fans. Our favorites were these two guys that road their bikes over to watch and then proceeded to talk with everyone. We don't know what they were saying but they seemed to be speaking with the aire of an expert so we like to believe that they were being know-it-alls. Finally after all our waiting the cyclists finally came through the town. I was sooooo excited, as is evident by my cheesy grin in all the photos. They went by very quickly but we did get to see Lance Armstrong and I was able to pick out some of the other people that I knew from watching it on tv so that was exciting. My friends and I are already discussing going back next year because it was so much fun, but we won't to go to a mountain stage where they'll be going a little bit slower so the actual race part will last a little while longer.(The guy in the yellow jersey just behind us is Alberto Contador who won the Tour)
(This is us with Lance Armstrong!!!!! I circled him in the very back, he's kind of hidden behind some other guy)
(This is a zoomed in version of the previous photo so everyone can see my proof of Lance Armstrong in my photo)

Sorry for the photo overload but I'm so excited about having gone that I can't possibly narrow it down anymore.
(Reese and I in our free hats from the caravan)
(Reese and Max having some fun before the race began)
(She loved this rattly balloon thing the caravan threw out)

Friday, July 24, 2009

The War at Home

There are moments in our youth that prepare us for the inevitable challenges we will face later in life. We may not realize it at the time but those skills we learned will be remembered and will give us the upperhand later on. Right now I'm waging a war in the backyard that I've been preparing for all my life. A war on bugs, pests, vermin and anything else I find particularly annoying. I remember as a young girl my father and I would go out to my mom's garden, pick those nasty tomato bugs off the plants and proceed to light them on fire. Oh the joy that came from watching them wiggle and squirm as they slowly melted into the ground. On another occasion, while visiting my uncle in Montana, I had the opportunity to participate in erradicating their gopher (maybe they were prairedogs....does it really matter) problem. My cousins and I would head out in the morning and set traps for them at the opening to their holes. Somedays we would get busy and forget to go back in the afternoon and when we realized it in the evenings we would go out to find them baked in the sun, one time we went back too early and had to finish one off by beating it with a stake.

At this point in my blog I should probably apologize to any pest lovers out there and remind them that clearly I'm telling this story in a "serious sounding but meant to be humorous" tone, so take that into consideration before sending me hate mail.

Anyways, these incidents in particular have prepared me for the battles I wage against creatures in my backyard on a daily basis. Right now I have moles in my backyard, I've yet to see one but I have the dirt mounds around the yard to prove it. Apparently you have to get a permit to kill them in Germany so I haven't done anything about them yet but we'll see where the battle goes from here. Though I have to admit I have a hard time hating them because apparently they eat the vermin that I do hate and every time I think of a mole I think of Mr. Mole from Mr. Toad's Wild Ride at Disneyland and who could hate him? I also have ants in the backyard, I have no issue killing them as quickly as I find them with my trusty can of Raid. I might have left some of them alone but when Reese was playing in the yard they decided to start crawling all over her and the price for doing that is death. Finally, we have the slugs that have become ever more apparent with our recent weather. Usually I just scoop them up with my trusy shovel and see how far I can fling them but when we went out this morning I saw so many of them that I had to teach them a lesson. I grabbed my salt and we went to town, in total I salted 32 slugs in the yard, 33 if you count the one I got this afternoon too. I'm hoping that the other slugs will see my pile of dead ones and take it as a warning to stay away.

Maybe someday I'll be able to take Reese out to salt slugs with me, it'll be a mother/daughter moment she'll cherish forever.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

I Swear it's True...

...I do comb my daughter's hair. It makes me smile everytime someone comments on how gorgeous her hair looks with all those curls because sometimes I see cute little curls, but most the time I just see a mess that I can't contain. The other night I checked on her before I went to bed and I almost lost it right then and there, her hair looked just like a little old lady perm. I apologize to her Great Grandma Glass, but her hairstyle looked exactly the same. I wish I'd had my camera so I could've taken a picture, I think I'll change her name from Reese to Ethel or Mildred or maybe even Blanche since I think that was the name of one of the characters on the Golden Girls.

Now I took this picture of Reese yesterday...
and I imagine it's what Nate looks like while he's sitting at his desk working in Iraq. Nate said it would be the perfect Air Force picture if only her shirt said "Chair Force." My poor little girl, it looks like she's got a lot on her mind. Luckily we don't see that face all that often, usually we see one of these happier looks, but I mean who wouldn't be happy about eating a pop tart

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Somedays even the best of us can't seem to catch a break, today is one of those days for my sweet baby girl. She had a dr.'s appt. this morning so we could try and figure out if she's only allergic to milk or if there's something else as well because she's been off all milk products for over a month and is still having intermittent diarrhea. We were told it would just be an appt. to see if they felt there was a need to refer us to the hospital in Landstuhl but they ended up sending us to the lab for work and then they are sending just her blood to Landstuhl. Anyways, my big girl cooperated completely for her entire exam, she even let the dr. look in her mouth. Then we went over to the lab and she sat there happy as a little clam not knowing the evil that was coming her way. They put the band around her arm and she was playing with the end of it and then the put the needle in...she didn't even flinch at first but then the technician thought that since she didn't hit the vein she should go ahead and wiggle the needle around to see if she could get it. I felt terrible for Reese at that moment because even I would have wanted to cry, well Reese had had enough at that point and was trying with all her might to get away from the mean lady with the needle, the mean lady holding her arm, and her mean mommy who was holding the rest of her body in a bear hug. Eventually the tech gave up and they used a heat pack to bring the veins on her other arm up to the surface. They got her vein fast that time but the damage had already been done and Reese wasn't happy until we were in the car and far away from those people.
As if the blood drawing process didn't make for a bad enough day, this afternoon Reese was playing and I'm not quite sure how it happened but somehow she fell and it looked to me like she hit her head on the end table so I scooped her up and after a few seconds of crying she was done and i went to kiss her and noticed that it looked like her eye was bleeding. Immediately my thought was to get some of the blood off so I could see if A.) she had actually gotten her eye or B.) if she was going to need stitches. Once we got it wiped up I could tell that she had barely missed her actual eye and the cut was only superficial so while it's still red and bloody and is beginning to look like she might have a black eye, she's going to recover. Either way today just wasn't the best day for a little girl. Maybe tomorrow will be better...

(I don't think the pictures do her war wound justice. It looked a whole lot worse when she first did it)

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Finally Home

Reese and I are finally home and getting settled after 7 weeks in the States and two day worth of airports to get home. We left Travis AFB Monday morning and arrived in Charleston where the flight to Germany we were hoping to catch had a long line of people ahead of us. We put our name on the list for it but the plane filled up before they even got to our category so we decided to get on the flight to Dover because they were supposed to be having 7 flights between late that night and the following evening. The supervisor had reopened the flight so we could get on and told us to hurry over because the flight would be getting ready to board any minute. We rushed through security and then sat....and sat...until someone came over and moved us to an overflow room because our plane was going to be delayed a few minutes and they needed to get a different group of passengers on their way. So we sat....and sat....and sat.....until he came back and said the flight was going to be delayed about 2 hours so we could leave the secure area but we needed to stay in the terminal because they could call us back at any time. By this time it was about 9pm and there was no place on base open that would deliver and since we weren't to leave the terminal Reese and I rummaged the vending machines and enjoyed a dinner of nutrigrain bars and cheez-its, a well-balanced meal. They called us back around 11pm and this time they loaded us on the bus and took us out to the plane, after sitting there for 20mins they said there was going to be a 45 min delay so we were going to go back inside, once inside we waited in the gate area for an hour and then they told us the plane was still broke so it was going to be about 3 hours until we left. I spent 2 of those three hours walking around in circles pushing Reese in her stroller trying to get her to fall asleep, by the time I got her to sleep and layed down to get some sleep for myself it was 3am and they were calling us back for the flight. We finally boarded and took off at 4:30am, I slept the whole 1.5 hours to Dover where we found out that not only had our delay made us miss all the flights the night before that we'd been hoping to get on, but our plane that was going on to Ramstein had already been ticketed so we didn't have an opportunity to try for that one. After we found out that the next flight showtime wasn't until about 4pm we were able to relax. Reese and I napped and then walked over to the store and got some breakfast. We played outside on the grass with some other passengers and Reese made good use out of the children's playroom in the terminal. When our flight time finally came there were only 5 seats on it so naturally we missed it and figured we would try for the one later or the two that were going out the next day. After awhile they called that they had added 13 more seats to the flight and we were very excited for the other people we were traveling with that we were sure would get on now, but didn't think we had a chance. When they called for our category we were ecstatic, we ended up being the last two people to get on the flight. Looking back we had a really good experience getting out during such a busy time, at times it looked like we might be stuck in Dover for days but instead we got to Spangdahlem Wednesday morning.
Now that we're home we're trying to get back into our routine. Reese has been sleeping a lot because of the time change and her sleep deprivation during our travel time, but I'm hoping that by tomorrow we'll both be back at it. We're glad to have Jaeger back, Reese has gotten a lot better at petting nicely which I think Jaeger is quite grateful for and she doesn't put Jaeger's toys in her mouth anymore, which I am quite grateful for. We had a great time in the states but we're glad to be back in our own house.
Since I didn't do any posts when we were in the states I'm including a few pictures from our time there. (okay, a few became more than a few)
Playing with her cousins, Benjamin and Kiersten, in Idaho Falls
Playing with Winkle, Reese loves animals
Just four little monkeys at the zoo
Visiting Aunt Kendra on temple square
Outside the temple
Reese Crandall and Rachel Kincher, BFFs because their mommies said so
Rachel is only a day older than Reese
Pismo Beach, CA

Camping at my aunt's cabin in tahoe, Reese and I slept in the tent

Hiking in Tahoe

Reese at swim lessons

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Real Walk of Shame

Have you ever walked out of REI (camping/outdoor store) covered from chest to toe in crap? I have and I can testify that doing so is the true meaning of the walk of shame.
(a toned down picture after I had wiped most of it off but you can at least get an idea of what I might have looked like walking out of REI)

It all started last night when I made Reese a grilled cheese sandwich for dinner, she's allergic to dairy so I was trying some dairy free vegan cheese that I found at the grocery store. She had no issue with it, ate it, enjoyed it, all that good stuff. This morning we went to Ikea to look at rugs and part way through the trip she started screaming and crying out in pain and there was nothing I could do about it. We got in the car and I got her some apple juice and it appeared as if she must have had a gas bubble or a stomach cramp or something because when we got home she had perked up and shortly there after she pooped, just a run of the mill poop. We figured since she seemed to be okay now it was okay to resume our errands. We went and got lunch, went over to the mall for about 10 mins and then headed to REI where I wanted to check some stuff out. I was looking at some hiking backpacks while Reese was standing next to me playing with some of the straps on a different bag, I picked her up and put her in one of them (they were the child carrier kind, I don't just shove my kid in backpacks) and thank god I only had her in there for a minute before I took her out and stood her on the ground next to me because as soon as I put the backpack back on the shelf and picked her up she pooped and it shot out the back of her diaper and dripped down both legs. In a split second I was suddenly covered in poop and I mean covered. It was running down my arm, one side of my shirt and pants and poop streaming down it and it was even on my foot and toe. As I stood there for a split second taking in what had just happened my mom noticed and ran out to the car to grab the diaper bag. There was a little on the floor but just a few drops compared to what I was wearing. I stood guard over the mess fearful to move since I didn't want to streak poop across the entire store. While my mom was gone a girl walked down the aisle and I apologized and told her to watch her step, once she took in the sight she offered to run grab some paper towels for me. When my mom got back she cleaned up the floor which she got near spotless and I flagged down an employee to alert them to the now cleaned up floor. I then had to walk over to the bathroom covered in crap holding a baby covered in crap. I finally got Reese stripped down and washed up and was able to at least wipe most of the poop off of me and when there was no more I could do I walked from the very back of REI still covered in and reeking of poop, holding a nearly naked baby. My mom was rushing to the door embarassed and I too was hurrying but let's be honest, when you're covered in crap there is no look or comment someone can give to make you any more embarassed so you just have to hold her head high and say "ya, I'm covered in baby poop and smell like crap."

Moral of the story, no more vegan cheese for Reese and let's pray that it has now passed her system and that she won't wake up from her nap covered in crap.

(Just to show that I wasn't exaggerating when I said chest to toe)