Saturday, June 30, 2012

Whatever You Like

Today, I heard the song, "Whatever You like" by TI come on the radio as I was changing stations. I stopped flipping stations and finished listening to the song.

Sometimes I hear songs that remind me of my husband. "Whatever You Like" is a song that always makes me smile and always instantly makes me think of my husband.

The night before our wedding, my husband went out with the guys while my Maid of Honor and I worked on some final wedding stuff.

While my maid of honor and I were chatting and preparing for the wedding, I received a text from my husband. The text contained lyrics to TI's "whatever you like". Not so much the dirty parts of the song, but rather the parts saying, "you can have whatever you like".

Now, nearly 4 years later, I still smile and remember that same shy guy who asked me to marry him. I remember how young we were and how crazy we were about each other. He was and still is my protector, my rock, my best friend and the love of my life.

July 13, 2008 is when he proposed to me. He was actually scared I would say no. He's crazy for ever thinking that.
July 13, 2011 my husband came home from our first deployment, and he actually remembered that was the day he proposed to me. If you know my husband, you know his memory with dates is far from good (which is why he jokes about why he's with me because I remember everything!).

Basically the point of this blog is to say, no matter where he is... There are little things that make him feel close to home. No matter where he is, I will always have something here to remind me of him. And those things will always bring a smile to my face and added proof there can be bits of happiness during deployment if you allow it.

Friday, June 22, 2012


I hate trees. I use to love them, but after the past couple weeks, I have decided the next house we purchase will not have trees anywhere near the house that are taller than our house. Seriously, Trees, You suck.

If you follow my Facebook fan page, Instagram or on Twitter,  you know I have been doing a lot of yard work this deployment. When my husband left, our yard wasn't as you would say, "Pretty".

The front yard was missing grass from the installation of our driveway after purchasing the house. I had finally got the grass to look good and planted flowers in the front. Yay for me!

The back yard was covered with leaves and was mostly just dirt. Every week I would get out there and rake leaves and work to make the yard look good. It was far from being my dream yard, but it was green and very few bald spots.

The left image is after weeks of work. Yard was green and I had filled some holes along the fence with top soil as well as bagged TONS of leaves. The right image was the project I was starting. All the grass (what was there) was going to be removed and I was going to level the area out and begin working on my husband's awesome patio surprise.

Then, when having someone come quote to finish off our privacy fence, I received bad news that the tree closest to our house was not only dead, but hollowed out. Problem? This tree was EXTREMELY close to our house and more than double the height of our house. If it were to fall, it would take out 3 bedrooms and 2 bathroom at the very minimum. Yikes.

Before believing this man, I sent photos of the tree to my father-in-law who is an expert with trees. He then told me what I expected, but didn't want to hear. The tree had to come down.

I had more than 5 companies give me quotes. The tree was so large and so close to our house it wasn't going to come cheap. Of course, I chose the guy I felt the most comfortable with, and just so happened to be the guy with the lowest price. Within 2 days, he had his team at my house to get the tree down.

The company is called Great Scott. And they were Great! They stayed until dark and had the tree down in one day. I was nice and made them Lemonade and cookies. I figured it was the least I could do with them being out in the sun all day and not taking breaks. Man, were they ever appreciative!

As you can see, my green yard was starting to turn to muck. 

They struggled with the stump with it being as large as it was. The bobcat spun it's tires when it tried to get under the chainsaw cut they put in at the base to pull it up. They ended up having to go from top to bottom with the chainsaw ans splitting the base in two. The tree ended up taking two truck loads to haul off, not including the limbs they turned into sawdust. 

My yard, a mess. But, when there is a bobcat and a tree falling in your yard.. what can you do? They even had to take out part of my fence to get the bobcat in the back yard. They did go above and beyond by re-installing the gate for me. My back yard has about a 10 foot section that is green. My front yard is also a mess, but nothing compared to the back. 

Before, my yard was very shaded. And although it is still shaded, there is a HUGE section to my yard that was not there before due to the tree and the sun is bright! I've noticed my house stays a bit warmer now too. Which, may be good for winter. Now that summer is here, my central air may be running a tad bit more. But, for the yard space, I'm OK with that. 

Now, my tree issues didn't stop there. Just a few days after having this beast of a tree cut down, I guess the Gumball tree, also in my back yard, felt neglected. A rather large limb from the top of the tree broke loose and crushed the roof of my husband's shed. The shed he finished building just 3 days before he deployed in March. 
Coming home from working to see this, my only thoughts were, "Really?!".
The limb even moved the shed over a few feet as well as ripped apart and through the metal on the roof. The limb was only inches away from hitting our lawn mower.

Thankfully for us, the tree company that took down the beast of a Red Oak for me, came by and removed the limb (which was inside the shed, over the fence and on the neighbor's garage. It was no little limb!). AND, they did it for me for free, saving me nearly $500. They even looked at the Gumball tree for me to give me a status on the condition of the tree. The tree is in GREAT health, however, they did tell me that Gumball trees are notorious for loosing limbs as the the limbs get so large and too heavy for the tree. So, now I'm debating as to cut down the Gumball tree or not. It wouldn't be any time soon, as we have had to shell out a lot of money in a very short amount of time. My pocketbook needs a break!

Now, sometime in the very near future, there will be a pretty little wood shed where this mangled metal shed still currently sits until I figure out what the heck I need to do with it. 

I wanted the wood shed to begin with, but he wanted to save a couple hundred dollars with the metal. Now, I am making the investment to get the "Prettier" lawn ornament. 

So, Here's to no more tree issues, PLEASE!
I love trees, I really do. But I do not like when they add to my deployment to-do list and when they cost as much as they do. Now, I'm back at square one for working on my yard. Grass seed has been poured, now, finger's crossed it will grow. I really want a pretty yard. 

Thankfully, there are no trees that are a major threat to our house in our yard. My biggest threat is my neighbor's kids. But that's for a whole different blog. 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

They're coming to get you Barbara!

This deployment I have been pushing my creativity. I have a long list of projects I plan to conquer, decorating my house, making my yard beautiful and so much more.

My favorite project lately? Care Packages.

Last deployment I always decorated the box and even did theme boxes. However, the box I'm about to show you, I'm unsure that I can ever top it.

My husband is a HUGE fan of The Walking Dead as well as any Zombie movie. When all the "Zombie" news articles started popping up (man eats homeless man's face off, college kid eats roommate's heart and brain... true stories), my weird and twisted thoughts automatically went to, "Hmmm.. Zombie box!".

I'm a bit of an overachiever, so, of course I went all out on this box with decorating and EVERYTHING inside.

Instead of me rambling, I will let the pictures (tons of them) do the talking.

 So, You're wondering what all is in the box? How about I just list it all!

  • Movie, Zombieland
  • Zombie Blood Energy Potion Pack
  • Zombie Mints
  • Bag O'Zombies (similar to bags of GI Joes)
  • Zombie Survival Energy Drink
  • Zombie Jerky- Teriyaki
  • Zombie Survival Playing cards
  • Zombie Pea Brains- Wasabi Peas
  • Zombie Skin- Salted Dried Seaweed
  • Crusty Zombie Toenails- Sesame Sticks
  • Sour gummy worms
  • Movie, 28 Days Later & 28 Weeks Later
  • Movie, The Zombie Diaries
  • Zombie Gum

I'm sure I left something out. But you get the idea!

I couldn't wait to blog about this box. And because of my impatience, there are a few items missing from the box that I ordered online (They will be here in a couple days). So, here are some of the things that will be in the box when it is sent out to my husband.

Work gloves, slippers, brain suckers, and a zombie arm bottle opener
Photos courtesy of

Water bottle and sleep mask
Photos courtesy of
To decorate the box, I used Spray blood we had leftover from Halloween. My right hand is stained pink from covering it in the dye to put a "Zombie hand print" in the bottom of the box. I then continued with my care package obsession of using Duck brand duct tape, and created the caution tape. I decided to buy solid yellow tape, as I didn't want to purchase a caution tape pattern because I use the Duck tape to wrap the box shut- I assume caution tape on the outside of the box would raise some eyebrows!
I took a black sharpie to put the patterns on the Duck tape, as well as write on the box. I also used a white paint marker to fill in on one flap of the box to create a Warning sign. Being that the paint pen was used on the cardboard and not the tape, it dried extremely fast as it absorbs into the cardboard.

After I finished with the Duck tape, drawing and writing on the box, I then use the spray blood to put "splatters" of blood over the tape.

This box wasn't cheap. I will not go into detail to how much I spent because I'm not exactly proud of it! Ha! However, I know my husband will absolutely love this box and it will make him smile. AND I HAD A BLAST MAKING IT!

If you are interested in creating your own Zombie theme box, check out Amazon for some awesome Zombie treats, as well as the site, NEATOSHOP.

I'll be making a trip to Hot Topic this weekend sometime to see if I can snag a couple other fun goodies for this box as well (If I have any more room!). I do know that Hot Topic carries a "blood bag" which is actually an energy drink. I might pick up a couple of them to throw in as well.

Now, how in the world am I going to top this one? Hmmm...

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