Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Missing Someone is Missing Someone

It's early and my mind is thinking. Ut oh. I don't know that this is considered a rant, but just going to put my thoughts out there.

Something I see so very often is Military Significant other's constantly nagging on people for missing their SO when they are gone a week, or a less time then the SO with the longer period spent apart. Not so much that they miss them, but because they say they miss them or because "they understand".

Everyone deals with being away from their significant other differently. My husband is gone for a week.. or NOT even a week, do I miss him? You bet your arse I do. Do I miss him any differently when he's gone for 3+ months? No, I do not. Missing someone is missing someone.

When someone tells you "They understand" they understand what MISSING SOMEONE is like. Who are you to say that they don't understand  or that they can't miss their SO just because their SO hasn't been gone as long as yours? You're no better, or more entitled to the emotions of being apart than they are.

Yes, I do think it's easy to think "a week, Wow.. I wish I could miss my husband for just a week.". But you want to know what I think? You're still reading this, so I guess you do. You're jealous. I think that person being the 'One upper'... "I have it harder, it upsets me that you miss your husband when he hasn't been gone as long as mine" is just wanting to be that person that has it harder than someone else. Have I thought that when someone has said they miss their husband while he's at work? I sure have. Guess what. I was Jealous of them. BUT I have missed my husband while he was at work. Situations happen, things come up that you want that person you are closest to you to comfort you.. you're missing them.

YES, the challenges that may come with deployment may be harder to deal with. But also, what's hard for one to deal with.. may just be easy for someone else. And vice versa.

Everyone handles situations differently.
"When you're struggling with something, look at all the people around you and realize that every single person you see is struggling with something, & to them, it's just as hard as what you're going through."
-Nicholas Sparks: Dear John

Saturday, November 27, 2010


April, The Life of A Sailor's Empress is one of my "in real life" friends. She is a sweetheart.  She is bubbly, but also another one of those ladies that stands firm on what she believes. Which is the type of gals I like to be around.

I was so happy when April volunteered to guest blog! Her blog is newer, and like me.. she uses her blog to get out whatever pops into her  mind. She's carefree and says what she thinks.

Here is what April is Thanking the Military for today:


I have a lot to be thankful for as far as the military is concerned. As a military daughter, friend, and spouse I am proud to say if it weren't for the Navy I would not be here today. My father was stationed and still works on Norfolk Naval Base when he met my mom who was from a small town in Pa. They were great friends and my father served this nation on ships. And then he served his country again as a DOD worker. All the years growning up even though he wasn't there he was my hero because later in life I wanted to join the Navy but due to health reasons I could not. But I met my best friend whose husband was stationed at N.O.B! We were the best of friends and still are to this day. I have always been a strong supporter of the Armed Forces but I kind of understood the position of a wife. I was living in Hawaii and working on MCBH when I met the one I married. I was at first doubtful because I thought of everything that my best friend went through being a military wife. So I went on my first date and well after that the rest is history. I eventually had to leave to come back to Virginia. Here is where I learned how to be a emotionally strong woman. Reguardless of how much my hubby was in danger I still kept a strong face and a fighting spirit.  Here in Virginia is where I met some awesome women who helped me through hard times. I am very thankful for these ladies Tia, Christina, Morgan, and Shaunell. From them I have learned that it is okay to be who you are and still be married to the military. I am thankful to the Navy cause it taught me to be strong and I learned patience from it. Also having a dad in the military kind of shapens you for the world more. The military has given me a awesome dad and some kick butt friends who are considered family. Along with a cool brother and mother. The Navy has been a big part of my life and I am blessed to have such a amazing family and bunch of friends.  I thank the men and women who serve for protecting our freedom and the scarifice they have made in thier life.

Happy Thanksgiving
April Lawson

Friday, November 26, 2010

Ola Vevik, The Navy and How They Saved My Life

Today, I am proud to have Jennifer, aka Inside My Mind [like Phantom of the Opera] guest blogging for me. I have known Jennifer for quite some time. She's awesome. She is not a Military spouse, or a wife in general. She wears no service uniform or Medals above her heart. But one thing is for sure. This girl has a great head on her shoulders. This girl will go far in life. Jennifer is Passionate about the military, she has great appreciation for it.

Jennifer, If you choose the Navy life, I know that you will make an amazing Sailor. I thank you for your passion wanting to join something bigger than yourself. For staying positive, for always smiling. I can't say that I have ever met anyone more patriotic than you.

When I asked Jennifer to blog for my "Thankful" week. She was more than thrilled, I'd say just a wee bit excited ;)

I asked Jenny, "Why are you Thankful for the Navy?"

"Ola Vevik, The Navy and How They Saved My Life"

I thought long and hard about what I wanted to write for this blog. I LOVE the military and my country. I have no idea why, it's just the way it is. I'm that person that cries during the Star Spangled Banner and especially the Pledge of Allegiance. Ridiculous, I know but it's just the way it is.
I'm especially thankful for the Navy, it saved my life. And here's how:

So, it was 1980, my dad is a 28 year old alcoholic. His life was completely messed up and he wanted a way out. He thought joining the military would help get him cleaned up. He was wrong.
He first went to the Army Recruitment Office to enlist. They wouldn't let him though because he had a drug possession charge from 1971 that they considered a felony. So he waltzed down to the Navy Recruitment Office. They only considered his drug possession as a misdemeanor. So he enlisted.
He spent the next 3 years traveling the world, partying it up and getting paid for it. It came time for his 3 year tour to end. He told me that there had been rumors that the "Big E", as he affectionately refers to the Enterprise, was going to Australia. So of course he wanted to go. He'd always dreamed of going to Australia: pretty women, exotic accents and a fun time. Who wouldn't? So he signed up for another year.
Shortly after re-enlisting, he took a sledgehammer to the boatswain's locker and did A LOT of damage. His immediate superior, Ola Vevik, the ship's boatswain, went before the captain on my dad's behalf. He came back with 2 options. Option 1. be reduced to a seaman recruit. Option 2. Go to drug and alcohol rehab in San Diego for 13 weeks.
He chose rehab. He finished out his last year with the "Big E" and went back to Milwaukee where he met my mother.
I'll be eternally grateful to Mr. Vevik and the Navy. They could have just discharged him but instead they gave him a choice. If he hadn't gotten his life straightened out, I wouldn't be here. He wouldn't have gone back home, my mother would have never dated him and I wouldn't be here right now.
I'm so proud of my dad. I love him so much. And like I said, I'm so thankful for the Navy and Ola Vevik.
If anyone who is reading this happens to know of Mr. Vevik or a way I can get in touch with him, I'd love to thank him personally if at all possible.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

I am Thankful for this Life

Today is Thanksgiving day. What are you Thankful for?

The typical response is usually something along the lines of family, friends, turkey.. etc. All of which I'm very thankful for. However, today, I'm going to go a different route with what I'm thankful for.

I'm Thankful for this life.. The Military life that so many don't appreciate, but I owe so much to. We all do.

Today, as many stuff their mouth's full of Turkey, dressing and the works, I will keep in mind why I have the luxuries such as being able to enjoy such a nice meal.

I'm thankful for my freedom. Without the Military, that freedom could so easily be taken away. I'm thankful that I still have my rights because of the brave men and women who have so bravely decided to join something bigger than themselves and fight for those freedoms. Past, Present and Future.. I thank you.

I am Thankful that my husband does have a secure job, and steady income. The pay may not be the greatest, but the Pride we have for our Country, my husband's brothers & sisters in service, by far make up for the lack of pay.

I'm thankful for Deployments. Yes, I am THANKFUL. This goes back to the "Freedom" thing. Thank you!

I am Thankful for the amazing ladies I have met along my Journey as a "Navy Wife". For the sense of "Togetherness" and understanding. Thankful for having "Somebody to lean on".

I'm thankful for TriCare. Oh yes, one of the biggest complaints I hear. I am Thankful. Yea sure, the wait may suck sometimes, but you have the option to opt out of TriCare and get other means of insurance. I choose to have TriCare, and I appreciate no monthly premium. Can't complain about something given to you for free! We're not talking co-pays.. a lot of companies have co-pays.

I am thankful for the military, especially the Navy since that is the lifestyle I'm involved with. I am thankful because of the US Navy, I know how strong I am. I know how independent I am.

I am Thankful for Emails! Oh how I love them.

I am thankful for the communication skill the Military lifestyle has forced my husband and I to learn to keep our marriage strong.

I am thankful for the discounts we all get for being military and dependents. They may not be much, but I'm appreciative that my husband's service is recognized.

I could continue this post for ages. No amount of words could ever show how THANKFUL I am to the military, to this life my husband and I CHOSE for ourselves.

Today, I THANK you Military- I Thank You Navy, Army, Marines, Airforce and Coast Guard. THANK YOU for allowing me to continue my day to day life with the luxuries I have and so many others that are taken for Granted.

I am Thankful for this life.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Dear Military, I Thank You

Today, I am proudly hosting The Wife on the Roller Coaster from Riding the Rollar Coaster.

I am so Thankful for this blogger. She is an inspiration to me. A strong woman, positive and knowledgeable about the military lifestyle and all it entails. I know that whenever I need a pick-me-up, I can visit her blog or her Facebook page and I'm sure to leave in a better mood. She's my morning coffee.

When Riding The Roller Coaster said she would guest blog for me, I was more than excited. Her posts always make me smile, make me think.. and I always feel a connection with her words.

When asked, "What are you Thankful for when it comes to the Military?", This is what "Reese Barrymore" had to say:

Dear Military: I Thank You

Dear Military,
Thanksgiving is once again upon us.  In between mouthfuls of turkey and stuffing, cranberries and mashed potatoes, we remind ourselves of all the things we’re thankful for. 

There are the obvious big things, like our families and our health, the houses we live in and our steady paychecks.  There are the little things, like a much-needed day off from work and the turkey that emerged from the oven perfectly cooked.  And then there are the surprising things, the things we have no idea we’re thankful for until we give our souls a good searching and discover they are so pervasive in our lives that we can’t imagine living without them.

Military, my surprising thing to be thankful for is you.

At one point or another, we mil spouses complain about the lifestyles you force upon us.  The multiple PCS’es.  The crazy hours our spouses work.  The hurry-up-and-wait philosophy.  TRICARE.  And, of course, deployments.  I’ve been on this roller coaster for almost a decade now, and yes, I’ve often wished the ride wasn’t so bumpy and unpredictable.  But when I look back over the years, I can’t imagine a life any other way.  And I thank you for that.

I am thankful that you have given my husband the opportunity to pursue a career he loves. 

I am thankful for the places you have taken me.  If not for you, my husband and I probably would have settled down in one location and stayed there forever, oblivious to what else is out there.  We certainly would have never had the chance to live in Japan!

I am thankful for the people you’ve introduced me to.  Most of my friends are military spouses.  They get me.  They understand my ups and downs.  They know the right words to say.  They sit right there next to me on this crazy ride.

I am thankful for the lessons you have taught me.  You have forced me to think for myself, to embrace the unknown, to persevere through challenges, and to make the best of difficult situations. 

I am thankful for the way you have molded me into the person I’ve become.   I was practically a kid when I met you.  Now I am a strong, independent woman.  And I’m confident that if I can handle everything you’ve thrown at me, I can handle anything. 

I am thankful for the pride I have in my country.  I’m proud of my husband and all the other service members whose sacrifices secure our freedom.

But as thankful as I am for the role you’ve played in my life, please don’t take offense if I don’t mention you as I sit before my Thanksgiving feast and take my turn sharing with my family what I’m most thankful for.  I’ll tell my husband how thankful I am for his love and our marriage.  I’ll tell my children how thankful I am to be the mother of two happy, healthy, intelligent kids.  I’ll share my appreciation that my husband is home to celebrate this holiday with us, that I have a challenging and rewarding job, that my children are thriving at their schools, that I have loving and supportive family and friends who are only a phone call away.  But I’ll likely forget to add you to that list. 

The lifestyle you have given me is all I know.  And sadly, I tend to forget to appreciate those things in my life that are so easily taken for granted.  So Military, I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you.  I can’t imagine my life without you.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wife on the Roller Coaster

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Dear USAF, I'm Thankful

Today I am hosting Lauren from Faith & Deployments.
I was so happy that Lauren wanted to guest blog for me! I like the way she blogs so freely, but still yet.. I see that she is a positive person in her posts. She makes the best out of tough situations. Her blogs are always a pleasure reading, although, I admit.. I am horrible at commenting.

When I asked Faith & Deployments what she was Thankful for- military style, I received this wonderful post.

"Dear USAF, I'm Thankful"

I honestly never thought those words would ever come out of my mouth. But Journey of a Navy Wife posted the call for Bloggers to blog about what they were grateful, with the military!

I am grateful that my husband has a guaranteed job. Having applied for a decent paying job for over a year and a half, I don't know what we would have done without his job. I am grateful that when I go to the UCC on base or pick up my prescriptions I don't have to pay anything. Health care is so expensive and I spent the last 3 years of my life barely going to the doctor since I had to pay out of pocket. Now I don't have to worry if we are sick. I am thankful for the extra pay which somehow makes deployments almost worth it. It's not much, but this time the USAF paid us more than $3 a day in per diem....for the first time ever! Because of that we are able to buy this Shrunk and have extra money to throw in the bank. I am very grateful for this trip money.

I am grateful for the friends I have made. These ladies are true gems, diamonds in the rough and some of the strongest most amazing ladies I have ever met. I consider them more like family than my own family most times because they treat me and others like family without judgement, harsh words, and are there no matter what. They don't push their own ideals and lifestyles on others, they listen when you need it most, and they offer advice without being mean or condescending. I think the military helped shape these ladies and make them the most invaluable friends I could ask for. 

I am grateful for a safe place to go where I don't have to worry if it's 11PM and I am in a dark parking lot. Base feels so safe to me most days, safer than my own home.

There are a lot of things I am grateful for with the military, but the thing I am most thankful for is my Husband. Because if it wasn't for the USAF he never would have been stationed in VA and I never would have met him. He's worth more than anything in the world. And while it sucks that the AF rips him out of our home at least once a year, having him in my life is worth more than not having him home. He's the peanut butter to my jelly, my cheese to my macaroni. Let's face it, he's the sexiest man in ABUs (yes I am being biased). So the first decision the USAF made for us was to send my Airman to me.

Thank you USAF, sometimes, you aren't as bad as you seem!

Monday, November 22, 2010

I'm Thankful for this Deployment

Today, I am hosting Samantha from Navy Doll.

I love Sam! She is a beautiful person, inside and out. I love that she holds NOTHING back, she stands firm on her beliefs.. while at the same time, she doesn't disrespect anyone else's beliefs. She and I don't always agree on things, but we never trample one another's beliefs. I have had the privilege of meeting her in Person a couple times now. I guarantee you.. there is no reason in the world for you to not like this woman.

<- Look at her! Gorgeous!

Even though most of mine and Samantha's friendship has been an online acquaintance... I consider her a true friend. She's a great listener and I feel like I always have someone to count on.

I asked Samantha, "What are you Thankful for when it comes to the Military?". I hope you enjoy her post:

"I'm Thankful for this Deployment"

Here we are, another holiday coming around the corner and it is just myself and my two kids. Where is my husband? In the middle of the ocean, thousands of miles away. I should be cursing the military for making him miss Thanksgiving again. I should be crying to myself because I have a 7lb turkey in my freezer that I'm not cooking until Christmas. I should be jealous that everyone else gets to go home and be with their families. I'm not.  It's not the military's fault. It's his job and I'm not even slightly jealous or angry. I'm happy for others. I'm thankful that my friends and family are able to spend this holiday together. I'm thankful for this deployment.
Yes, I'm thankful for this deployment.  I realize the love that I have. The family that God has blessed me with. I have strength that I never thought I could have. Although this isn't our first deployment, this is our first one away from each other with two kids and no family close enough to run to. It is very different from the last.
This time spent apart has made me come to learn the things that I am sincerely most thankful for.
Reading an email from him, getting a phone call every so often, and having someone from his ship update their facebook gives me piece of mind. I look around at what I have and I see my beautiful babies. I have them with me. I am most thankful for that. Their smiles and laughter give me hope for better days. They are healthy, happy, and loved. So loved. Even when he is so far away, he loves them. What more could I ask for?
I'm thankful for my friends and family who care and make this deployment easy on the both of us. When I need a shoulder to cry on or an ear to vent to, I know who I can turn to. I'm so thankful for you all. Those of you who make me laugh everyday or just say kind words out of nowhere, thank you.
I'm thankful for my husband. He has been my best friend for 4 years and never has he let me down. Each day he is gone our love grows stronger. We know no distance or time. Sure we feel the strain of being apart some days. But isn't the homecoming the greatest moment to look forward to? All becomes better when I imagine us four hugging on that pier.
Lastly, I'm thankful that this isn't forever. As much as I love being a Navy wife, I know that I will have to let that go one day. Someday he will reenlist for the last time, he will bid his farewell to the job he loved so much, we will wake up one day, and our new life as a retired couple will begin. Our children will be off to college (or the military themselves), our travel plans will begin, our romance will be rekindled, and we will laugh about all the problems we had when we were younger.
The future. That's what I'm most thankful for.

Written with love by,
Samantha McDonald aka Navy Doll

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Lots to be Thankful for!

I asked a few wonderful ladies to be a guest blogger for me this week. I have 5 wonderful ladies lined up with some wonderful posts. I wanted to post this earlier this morning, but with the events of today, that was impossible.

This week, I will be hosting Riding The Roller Coaster, Navy Doll, Faith & Deployments, Inside My Mind [like Phantom of the Opera] and The Life Of A Sailor's Empress.
 Here's what to expect:
Monday- "I'm Thankful for this Deployment"
Tuesday- "Dear USAF, I'm Thankful"
Wednesday- "Dear Military, I Thank You"
Thursday- "I'm Thankful for this Life"
Friday- "Ola Vevik, The Navy and How They Saved My Life"
Saturday- "Thankful"

These ladies are great. I will tell you why I love them the day I publish their guest post.

I asked these ladies a simple, very simple question. "What are you Thankful for?". With that question, it had to be positive and military oriented.

I have read their posts, and I must say.. I have some wonderful ladies surrounding me. Cyber-world and real life.

I am blessed.

Although this is not my actual "Thankful" post. I would like to say "Thank you!" to everyone who has reached out to me and my husband today. Whether it be here on blogger, facebook, email or even by phone. It means a lot to me. There are many of you I have yet to have the chance to respond to, it's been a busy and chaotic day, and I will try my best to get back to each and every one of you as soon as possible. Just know, I appreciate all your kind words.

NCIS has yet to find the 2 men that held the gun up to my husband today, but I know in time they will get what they deserve. I am just Thankful that my husband was not harmed physically. Money is replaceable, my husband is not.
I pray that noone else faces what my husband had to endure today as well as the mental anguish I felt this morning. We try to make light of the situation and make corny little jokes, so far it's working... We refuse to loose our positivity and refuse to let this ruin our Thanksgiving.

Again, Thank you all.

NCIS on the Real

Today started as any other normal day. Woke up at 2 am with the husband, he jumped in the shower, I laid out his work clothes for him, he got ready and off to work he went.

I started on some custom graphics orders I had, and received the text that he made it to base. About 15 minutes later, he calls. He never calls in the morning. I knew something was wrong. I answer to hear, "Call the bank and cancel my card. I just got robbed.".

Honestly, at first.. I almost thought he was joking. Who gets robbed on base? Bases are secured, they are safe. I guess I was a bit delusional. He wouldn't joke about this.. not at 0315 in the morning! Without freaking out and asking questions, we got off the phone and I called to cancel his card, and he was filling NCIS in with the details of what happened. The gunmen made it to the ATM before I could get his card canceled. Drained several hundred dollars from our account. Thankfully, the bank is going to work with us to put that money back.

I called my husband back to ask what happened. Then reality set in. Today, I could have lost my husband.

My husband had just parked his car in the large parking lot across from the ship. He had just got out of his car and 2 masked men approached him with a shotgun. They forced him to the ground and held the gun to his back, demanding him to give them all his money. My husband never carries cash, all he had was his bank card. They took his wallet and demanded for the PIN number. My husband in a panic just gave them the PIN. They left and my husband called base police, and then me.

He filed a report with base police, then was questioned and filed a report with NCIS. Over an hour of questioning, and filing reports. At the same time, base police was searching the base. So far, no luck.

NCIS had me call the bank for information and timestamps on the ATM withdrawls since it would be faster than having to get a warrant or whatever and going straight to the bank. Right after I had called the bank and canceled his card, the bank system went down for maintenance. Meaning, not even the employees can acess any information. So, we have to wait to 8am before that information can be gathered by us.

NCIS told my husband that it was actually good that he gave the men the correct PIN (minus the stolen money). They said because of that, they can get time and place. They can then watch the gate tapes for the timeline. They can also get video from the ATM. Finger's crossed they get a lead. 

We are meeting with NCIS in the morning. Finger's crossed that the idiots are caught so that this won't happen to anyone else. It is definitely scary, especially knowing it happened on a "secured" base.

Right now, I don't care about the money that was stolen or anything other than the fact that  my husband is alive. Things could have been so much worse. Thank God my husband wasn't hurt. Nothing matters more to me than the fact that he is still here in this crazy world with me.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

How do you Define yourself?

Today, I read a post from Amber over at Goodnight Moon called What defines you?. It got me to thinking (as most of her posts do). How do I define myself? Christina, Who the heck are you?!

As I pondered the question,  I wondered what the question entails. What makes a person who they are? Is it their job, their marital status, their accomplishments? Is it just personality traits, your kids? Does your past define you?

WHAT does it mean?

Do you let the fact that your SO is a service member define you, being a Military Wife (girlfriend, fiance.. etc)?

Do you let others define you?

Enough with the 20 questions game.

Who am I? I am me. I am a wife, a military wife.. a United States Navy wife. I wear the title proudly.
I'm a writer, whether the words on this screen are good or not, I am a writer.
I am a strong minded individual, I am passionate.

My past, is that.. it is the past. Because of the challenges, the tears, the happy moments... the good and the bad, I am who I am today. Does that Define me? I don't necessarily see it as defining who I am, but  because of some of those things.. I have been molded into the individual I am today.

What have I accomplished? Alot. I have my own business. Not one business, but two businesses. I am a hard worker and I set goals that push me to strive for the best. 

Defining yourself is such a broad spectrum. There can be so many things depending on what you think "Defining yourself means".

I have asked myself many times "Who are you?".

All I can say is, "I am me". It's as simple as that.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

They Fought for YOU

"This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave" -Elmer Davis

Today, is Veterans day. Today is a day set aside for us to remember those who have server to keep our freedoms intact. To remember those who lost their lives in sacrifice for you and for me. To honor those who have served and those currently serving to be able to continue the luxuries we have in America.

I see so many people who are against the military, or they don't believe that the military is in place to uphold our constitution. Believe it or not, the military is fighting for your right to freedom of speech. Service members are the reason we still have our freedom. I read recently "Military doesn't fight to give us freedom". I agree. The military fights to Continue to give us the freedom we currently have. They fight so that our rights do not get taken away by another country. 

Today, while you may be enjoying a day off from work, or maybe you have plans for a cookout, There are Sailors, Soldiers, Marines, Airmen and Coasties that won't be getting any sleep tonight. There is a family without a father, a mother, a brother, a sister, a son, etc. because they paid the ultimate price for YOUR freedom. For MY freedom.

If you can't WON'T stand  behind them or beside them, feel free to stand in front of them. 

Thank You all who serve. You are all my Heroes/ She-roes.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

This gets Personal

What is PERSEC? It is the little thing (not so little) related to OPSEC that noone really pays any attention to. Honestly, it's not something JUST military families need to focus on. [Per]sonal [Sec]urity is something that everyone should watch out for. You never quite know who's checking up on you.. or looking for a time when you're vulnerable to any sort of adversity.

PERSEC is merely protecting your arse, protecting your "Personal" information.

With Today's technology.. Nearly everyone in the world breaks PERSEC in some way. Facebook, I notice is the EASIEST way to target someone. You know your profile is never TRULY private right? ;)

There are not set rules for PERSEC.. It's common sense if you think about it. But who really wants to think about things that deep into detail? Honestly, I break PERSEC.. Every person I know, personally and in the virtual world has broke PERSEC. I have fun with talking about PERSEC.. I always tend to scare some people with what they didn't realize they were sharing with the world. Because of my knowledge of PERSEC, I was told by a lady who works with Missing children services that she could easily get me a job with them because of my knowledge of PERSEC and my ability to point out things.

Enough with that.. now it's time to get you thinking.. Hopefully anyway. ;)

I'm going to use Facebook as my example for PERSEC.
  • What is one thing that most everyone breaks on Facebook? Using your name. Not only do a lot of people Post their first and last names.. I see a lot of Middle names and Maiden names. 
  • You have a profile picture. Now I know what you look like... and I still know your full name ;)
  • I know who you're friends with.
  • You post your hometown, and your current city.. I know where you're from and a general Idea of where you're at.
  • You update your status to tell me where you are going.. where you've been, what you're doing, what you're going to do. I know when you're home. Now all I need is to figure out where you live to rob your house, or go to the place you're going to find you and follow you home. 
  • You post your phone number.
  • You talk about your job in your status, you tell information about your job in your info/job section. I now know who you work for, and it's not hard to figure out where when you've already given me so many other details.
*Keep in mind, Facebook is not as private as you think it is. And when you accepted the terms of service, you gave Facebook permission to sell and use in anyway any bit of information on your page.. this includes your pictures.  (I'll get to pictures here in a minute)
  • I can see the pages you like. I'm going to use a Navy wife as an example. Your husband is on a ship, you "Like" the ship's official facebook page. I now know that your husband is in the Navy.. oh yes, a military family. Perfect. You'd be surprised how many people in the US.. American born citizens that wouldn't mind collecting information on you and selling it to the "Enemy". Anyway, back on track- From you liking the ships page, I can find out where the ships home port is. Again, I have your general location. I know if your husband is home, underway or deployed. I know if you're alone (without your husband). From your FB, I know your name, what you look like, general location, your likes, your status updates, what ship you're affiliated with, what branch of military.. etc. You get the idea.
You want to know another extremely easy way to figure out something about a person, (other than by status updates posted by someone who posts everything they do and when they are doing it)? Your pictures. "How can you figure out things from pictures?" you may ask... Just listen  read on, I'll tell you ;)

For someone who is non military, or for military some of these apply to both.
  • How many people do you know post mobile uploads? You're at a concert.. you post pictures while you're at the show. I now know where you're at and that you're not home.
  • You get a new car, you post a picture of it. I know what you're driving now. Not to mention you just posted a status about your new car.
  • You get a new house, or a new place to rent. You take a picture of it. Most people fail to remember that their street address number is on their house... Now, I know you live in XYZ city and your address number is 123. We're narrowing it down now ;) Plus I know exactly what you look like, what your car is and looks like, what your house looks like.. hmm.. Common mistake with renters- posting pictures of the surrounding areas and amenities. Posting pics of the inside of your place. No big deal right? Not until someone comments and is interested in renting near you and you tell them the complex name.
  • You're new car was in the picture of your house.. Did you realize that your license plate is showing? Or in the picture you took of your new car.. Ding ding ding! I now can get your complete address if you're vehicle is registered in the state you're in. Either way.. I have an address that I can use to get to you.. whether by you directly or to your family back home ;)
I can keep going with that.. but you get the idea I hope. It's fairly easy smeazy. 

This is for military families- Photos and military PERSEC. This scared a friend of mine.
  • You or your SO posts pics from port.. while you're at port. I know your direct location. There's only so many ports, All you have to do is figure out the country.
  • You or your SO post a picture in Uniform. I'm going to use the the Navy dress uniform as an example. On your dress uniform, some wear a name tag, I now have your last name and I know what you look like. There's more. From that dress uniform, I know your command. I will then be able to find out if the family is alone and the sailor is deployed. I will know a general area for the family. From the uniform, I also know your rate and your rank. I know you're accomplishments from your ribbons and medals.
  • You post a picture of the person in Uniform armed up, gun in hand. I can use this to make the US and the Military look bad... not to mention the things I can do with photoshop using your picture. 
I can go on and on. All of this applies to all social networking and forums... anything that's put out there in cyber space.

Here is a simple, commonly done PERSEC violation: (pulled from MIL Spouse online)
Unsafe way to post:
Posted by:  CrystalLovesGreg:  “Hey girls, sorry I won’t be in the forums today.  My son, Mike (he’s six) is home with the flu.   We just got back from Portsmouth Naval Hospital where we waited for six hours at the ER.  My two girls were crazy!  Anyway, I hope he gets better in time for DH’s return next week.  We go back for a follow up Tuesday morning.  I’ll be back on tomorrow.

What a lurker has probably learned:  You’re a Navy wife, named Crystal, with three children: two girls, one boy, age six, named Michael.  You live in Hampton Roads and your husband, named Greg, is on a ship returning in less than seven days.  And, if I wanted to find you, I could simply hang out Tuesday at the Portsmouth Naval Hospital and wait for a woman with three children who fit this description.  Voila! 

Safe way to post:  “Hey girls, sorry I won’t be posting today.  I’m taking care of my children.  Talk to you tomorrow.”

How much information are you giving out?

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Come join me and "Fart Rainbows"

Over the past couple days, I have learned something about myself. Okay, Well, I have learned what a few other negative individuals -Think- about myself. As I shared with a friend.. It makes me giggle.

Here's what I now know about myself:

  • Because I blog positively about the Navy and the military lifestyle, I am fake and am not blogging about how I truly feel about it. *giggles*
  • Because I haven't went through a deployment, I need to keep my mouth shut because I don't know what to expect. *giggles*
  • Deployment will change my positivity. 
  • I have only been a Navy wife for two years, I don't know anything about the military lifestyle. *Ha!
  • I haven't been through anything tough due to being in the military lifestyle. *t'hahaha
  • Because I'm Positive, and enjoy this lifestyle I go around telling people to "Suck it up". *hmmm
  • Evidently I'm "Too Proud" of my husband and the Military.
  • Because I carry the attitude that You signed up for this, and that You didn't have to stick with your SO if you carry so much hatred in your words toward the military.. that this grants the thought that I should be punched in the face
  • That evidently I think having emotions and missing your SO is wrong and being negative.
  • Thinking that "Any time is better than No time" is a bad view point- *I think this is where the "Suck it up" was pulled from.
  • I'm going to need Xanax because of my faulty optimism. 
  • I "Sh*t Glitter and Fart Rainbows"

I could keep going here. Oh the hilarity.

I blog positively. Why? Because that is who I am. I'm a positive person. I don't like negativity. AND I don't see anything negative about being a Navy wife.. or just being a military Family. I Like.. LOVE this lifestyle. My husband and I chose this for US. We chose it... as in Me and him sat down and made the decision TOGETHER. Even if he made the decision before me... I would have chose to stick through it all.. making the military life MY decision. Since when did being an honest person make someone fake?

What is there to know about a deployment? What is the difference from these workups that my husband has been on for months for more than a month at a time? NOTHING BUT TIME. Yeah, sure the risks are there with his safety and I may worry a little more than with just an underway. We won't talk any less than we do on these underways. So don't tell me to shut my mouth when I already have a pretty good idea of What to expect. Bring it on Deployment! I'm not scared of you! ;)

Deployment will not change who I am. I am me.. The military doesn't have an affect on that.. You don't have an affect on the person that I am. So, Mrs. "Deployment is the Devil".. Try me. Again, Not scared of Deployment. :D

Just because a wife has only been "Married to the Military" for less than a "Veteran" wife.. doesn't mean she's any less knowledgeable. That's been put out there so clearly to me. Kind of like saying just because you're older means you're more mature. hmm.. I've educated myself on anything and everything I can read about the military. Yes the Physical emotions the separation of deployment brings.. I have yet to feel.. But I know what to expect. I've learned plenty in my two years as a wife, and also growing up surrounded by a military family. And yes, I have done a PCS on my own.. I have had my car break down while my husband is away.. I've had more than 3 miscarriages without my husband here to comfort me. I could go on.. I never said it was easy, You just won't see me saying anything Negative about the Navy. The Navy did nothing to me... even with extended underways, schedule changes, seeing my husband for just 1 hour a day.. I'm not complaining. I'm thankful for that 1 hour! I have no control, neither does my husband. It's his job.. WE made this lifestyle for us. :)

I don't tell anyone to "Suck It Up". I simply say Handle it... Not just military related. ANY situation.. Handle it. It's HOW you handle it that makes you either a positive person or a Debbie Downer/ Complainer/ extremely negative person. There is a positive in EVERY situation. All depends on how you view it. I choose to be positive. 18 months without my husband.. I sure as heck will be grateful for 3 days over no time at all. Would WISH there was more time, but wouldn't complain that the [Branch of service] screwed us over.

Is is possible to be too proud of your Significant other? I mean really.. My husband LOVES that I support him with every breath of my body. My husband is Glad that I am such a positive person and know that I make my own happiness. He is proud that when he's away for 40 days to 9 months to 13 months that I am still smiling.. happy, and being his support. My husband would be highly upset if I was too down his job in any way.

Do you think Positivity grants the thought that someone would want to punch me in the face? It makes me laugh. Which cheek do you want? ;)

I sure as hell hope that every single person misses their significant other while they are away. Being in a constant positive state of being does NOT mean that you don't miss your SO... or that this lifestyle doesn't have it's challenges. Life is about challenges.. Military or NOT. It's about how you handle them.. (I feel like I'm on repeat here.). Missing someone.. showing your emotions doesn't necessarily mean you're being negative... Even when you're angry.. You can still be positive and act mature about it.

Obviously I'm not the one in need of the Xanax.. I think the person with so much hate and negativity could use it. I think it could help mellow you out. ;) So, continue to be jealous that I have a positive stand point on life.

I love the fact that someone thinks that I must poop glitter and fart rainbows. Seriously, I do love that.. it wasn't sarcasm. It was meant in a derogatory manor.. But ya know what. I know a bunch of ladies, a bunch of my readers who stand right there with me.. all of us "Farting Rainbows".. It's quiet pretty. Maybe you should join us. It takes a lot of talent to be this darn awesome. ;D

The Navy Wife Blogger that has the Attitude of June Cleaver.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Where did October go?

It seems as if I blinked and when I opened my eyes.. November was here.

This tells me 2 things. One- Deployment is closer... Gotta stop putting off some things. But on a much happier, much more positive note, My husband was gone for almost all of October for an underway... and it flew by.

The fact that October flew by with my hubby underway, makes me very happy. This proves to me that Deployment isn't just going to drag on. Sure, I know there are going to be days where I feel like they are just dragging on, but in the end.. I know I'll realize that the time passed by much faster than I anticipated, as it has with the long underways.

I think the trouble I'm still having is seeing how fast it's coming up on me. I still have some time, so much to do and so much that is happening.. I keep having to hit the pause button so that I slow down and really enjoy and appreciate the time I have with him before he leaves.

These are the times I know I will always remember.. this is part of the Journey.

Now that it's November, I want to post something I'm thankful for for every day of November. Something different every day. I challenge you to do so as well. It'll really show you what you have to appreciate and be grateful for.

Today, I am grateful for great communication with my husband. Without the good communication skills we have, I think these underways and the upcoming deployment would really get to me. Thankfully, even when he's away, he's still my rock.. my best friend.
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The Value of a Ring

 The beginning of October, Amber over at Goodnight Moon asked me to be a guest blogger. I'm posting it on my blog today to share it with those of you who may not have seen the post. Honestly, the post is one of my personal favorites.

When Amber first asked me to be a guest blogger, I was clueless as to what I would write for her.
Then I saw a discussion about how a ring is not a promise- it's just a piece of jewelry. It got me to thinking...

I don't look at my wedding band as just a piece of jewelry. To me, my wedding band signifies so much more. It's not "Just a ring".

Lets start off with a little history (I use to read sappy love poems, sappy love stories and articles growing up, I'm not real sure where I read some of these things).

Ancient Egypt is believed to be where the wedding band originated from. They chose a circle because it represents never-ending and immortal love. The Egyptians believed the ring finger held a vein that ran straight to the heart.

I remember when I was younger, I was told [I think my mom told me] that back in the day (yes, I said "back in the day"), Americans gave a thimble as a token of their love- instead of an engagement ring. It symbolized a pledge of eternal togetherness. When the wedding came, and the vows were said, the bottom of the thimble was removed- cut off to form a ring. Have you seen 'Peter Pan'? The thimble was used for a "kiss", although not entirely the same- you get the symbolism of the thimble representing affection and love. Wendy gave Peter a "kiss" [the thimble], and it was she gave just to him only.

Do you know why your ring finger is, well.. Your ring finger? It was believed that the third finger on your hand is the only finger that has a vein that runs straight to your heart. They would put the Wedding band on the inside so it is the ring closest to your heart (putting the engagement ring first means you are a widow- a lot of people don't know this).

There are some cultures that the ring symbolizes ownership.. although the word "Ownership" sounds harsh, and slave driven.. Do you not belong to your husband? Your body is just for him, right? If not- SHAME ON YOU! But that's an entirely different subject.

Rings have a part in many different cultures. While the traditions may be a bit different, the sentiment and meaning to love, treasure and honor one another forever- remains much the same.

With this being said, How do I look at my wedding band- What is it's meaning to me?
My wedding band to me is a promise from my husband, symbolizing eternity. Meaning endless-love. A ring is a complete circle, telling me that our love is unbreakable. It's a promise that was made along with our vows. They go together.
When I put the wedding band on my husband's finger, It was my promise that I was his. I am HIS wife. I am completely devoted to him, us and our marriage. To make it work through every challenge that faces us. To me, it was me telling him that I know what I'm getting in to marrying him- knowing he was leaving for the Navy. It was me telling him, "We are in this together- I'm in this for life".

I wear my ring with pride- It's a statement. I AM a married woman. Happily at that :)