To: Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates

You "might" consider shooting down the NorK's missile, should it look like it's headed to Hawai'i? Gee, thanks. Awfully kind of you.

Can you please find a pair and do your job? You're the Secretary of DEFENSE, for goodness sake.


- hfs


SpouseBuzz Organizational Challenge - March

This month's challenge is the car. For me, not too tough. I tend to keep my car pretty tidy. My kids and my husband tend to mess it up.

In fact, some would say I'm OCD about my car. That's possible...

BEFORE: (we had just come home from the beach)



One of the biggest challenges in my car is keeping the random papers - receipts primarily - under control. They wind up EVERYWHERE.


This is the little area where the headrests for the 3rd row are supposed to be stored. But I don't use the headrests on the third row so I took them out and now I use this space for storage. Because we spend a lot of time at the beach, I have a change of clothes for the kids as well as an extra towel in here.

I also keep some basic tools back here as well along with jumper cables and hazard markers/reflectors and a good flashlight.

My first aid kit. I use a toiletry bag - it's nice and compact. I don't have anything remarkable in there - just basic supplies: bandaids in all sorts of shapes and sizes, steri-strips, an ice pack, scissors, tape, a face shield, lots of rubber gloves, Motrin, Tylenol, Bendryl, etc. Just in case.





The best way I've found to keep the random papers in order is with a small accordian file. It tucks right into the center console or into the glove box. No more papers flying about when I drive with the windows down!

This month's prize is a doozy - an XM satellite system. You have to have participated in 10 out of the 12 challenges by the end of the year. If you've missed January and February, you can still participate! Entries are due by March 31st so get moving!


- hfs



To: The State of Hawaii

Looking for a way to solve the budget deficit issue? How'z about you stop paying for the Honolulu Police Department officers to SLEEP in their cars at road construction sites? Or "LOST" filming sites?

Just a thought.


- hfs


The first summer that we were here (2005), I made a list of things I wanted to do while we were here. It was up on my MySpace page and I just stumbled across it today. The items in BOLD are things I can check off the list.

- beaches : Sunset, Turtle Bay, Eternity Beach, Kailua, beaches further up the coast from Turtle Bay, Yokohama Beach, (those are the ones I have yet to visit)
- Audubon Society
- Polynesian Cultural Center
- Sea Life Park (we've been but the kids want to go again)

- magic island
- circle island tour by bus
- I want to hit every library on the island
- museum at Schofield Barracks
- drive Kolekole Pass

- snorkle Haunama Bay
- I want to hit all of the botanical gardens on the island (done 3 so far)
- whale watching cruise
- horseback riding at Kualoa Ranch
- hike up to Manoa Falls
- hike Diamond Head
- Friday fireworks in Waikiki
- ride the Duck Mobile
- go to a polo game up in Mokuleia
- Makapu'u tidepools
- go kayaking
- Contemporary Art Museum
- Hawaii State Art Museum
- Friday Art Walks down in Honolulu
- Hawaii Nature Center
- Byodo in-Temple
- hike to Makapu'u lighthouse
- hike old Pali road
- hike the Maunawili Falls trail
- hike Judd trail
- tour I'olani Palace
- catch the dolphin show at the Mandarin Oriental hotel
- visit the blowhole
- Pearl Harbor
- USS Bowfin
- USS Missouri (I've actually been on it while it was still in service but not since it was decommissioned)
- go torching on the North Shore

Not bad. The kids are on Spring Break this week and next plus I'll have with me a couple of teens from church (their mom works and she doesn't want them loafing about at home). So I think we're going to tackle a few more items on the list. Time to scope out a beach or two that we've not hit yet.

The tidepools will happen in a few weeks - Princess Trouble's class will be going on a field trip. And I need to add to the list:

- Pacific Air Museum
- snorkel Haunama Bay at NIGHT
- skydive

I'm sure there is more. That's all my brain can come up with at the moment. So now it's time to decide what to do this week and next!


- hfs


That'll teach me

UPDATE: So, here I am...4 days later and I'm STILL dealing with this stinking cold. But it's getting better. Slowly. Ugh. Darned viruses. This place is a vector.

Sarah, I hope the Mucinex worked better for you than it did for me. It about KILLED me!

Somewhere around New Year's (or was it Christmas? I forget.) I caught a cold. And, as usual, it went right for my voice. And then it cleared up. But the cough lingered.

Nothing major - just an annoying tickle of a cough that liked to rear it's ugly little head about 7pm each night. Made it difficult to sleep but nothing major. And I'd shake it and then a few days later it would come back.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

So I finally - after being harassed by my husband and a few friends - went to the doctor this week. He didn't see or hear anything alarming but sent me for a chest x-ray, just to be safe. Chest x-ray came back negative so he put me on Mucinex D (the one with the REAL pseudophedrine in it that I had to sign for. Thanks so much to the meth freaks of the world for making ME work harder to get my meds.) and benzonatate (a cough suppressant).

So I dutifully went home and started taking my meds immediately. By 5pm, my cough had become worse, and I was losing my voice.


Sleep was quite elusive that evening, given that I was coughing and hacking all night long (not to mention the fact that 120mg of pseudophedrine at 8pm tends to keep a person UP...who knew?). Thursday was U.G.L.Y. Lots more of the same, only this time I had a 5 year old to keep me company. Thank goodness for video games and the fact that he really likes "doing homework" like his big sister - I was able to keep him entertained while trying not to DIE on the couch.

MacGyver was able to take the kids to school Friday morning and, surprisingly, I did not get called to sub (figured they would since I was on my death bed) so I literally slept all day (thank GOD for NyQuil!!!). Laid low all day yesterday and drugged myelf to high Heaven last night (decided to go buy Mucinex WITHOUT the meth...that stuff WORKS. 1200mg of Guaifenesin...no messing around there!) and today seems to be better.

Thank goodness. But let me tell you, I will think twice about going to the doctor next time. I was feeling just fine until then!! Ugh.


- hfs



Little Man turned 5 recently. Pictures are up on their blog.

A teaser of what is there...


- hfs


The American Form of Government

The essence of freedom is the proper limitation of government.

My kids will be watching this when they get to be a little older.

h/t Brad.


- hfs




Just heh.

h/t Lex


- hfs

Monday madness

It's 9am here and I've been up for 3+ hours and I'm already knee-deep in my "TO DO" list (I put that in all caps because it's currently yelling at me). I got a burst of motivational energy this weekend and I'm riding it for all it's worth.

Laundry is almost done at our house - something that rarely happens. In addition, it's almost all put away (something that VERY rarely happens at our house).

I just wrapped up our taxes for 2008 (I know, I waited a long time given the fact that we are getting a refund) and I'm pleasantly surprised that our return is more than I expected (yay for deductible child care expenses!). Now it's time to adjust our withholdings for 2009 - there will be no interest-free loan to Uncle Sam from this house!

I am heading out in a few minutes to make a bunch of returns. Little Man's birthday party was this past weekend (pictures to be posted on their blog soon) and I bought too much in the way of decorations. Actually, it's not that I bought too much, it's that I didn't have time to get it all up! So I get to take some of it back.

I also need to hit Target (WOOHOO!!!! TARGET IS OPEN!!!) and return a tank top I bought. It's cute but it just doesn't fit me right.

Recycling is next - should be a good $20 worth of glass, plastic, and aluminum. Given the fact that the first half of the month is usually tight, this is a good thing!

I have some phone calls to make for the FRG - we're trying to get someone from the SpaceA/MAC flights department to come and give a brief. I know I plan to try to use SpaceA to get back to the mainland at least once during the next deployment. I also need to wrap up the Commander's gift - we have a Change of Command coming up in a few weeks so it's time to say thank you to MacGyver's current commander. Need some Hawaiian print wrapping paper.

And then it's on to the phone calls for doctor's appointments - me, the kids, follow-up on Little Man's tonsils (so far, we are 6 weeks post-op and NO STREP!! Knocking on wood!), etc.

At home, there are several little projects/things that need my attention - might as well take advantage of this burst of energy and get them tackled. Whee!!

So, what do you all have on your plates this week?


- hfs


SpouseBuzz Organizational Challenge

Most of you know I write over at SpouseBuzz (well, sometimes...sometimes Andi has to kick me in the pants to post something). Andi started an organizational challenge that I missed the boat on for January but managed to get into by the skin of my teeth for February.

The timing of this challenge was wonderful - normally we would have PCSd from this place a year ago and would have already done the PCS clean out/organization. But, because we extended here, there was no PCS to force me to "decrap" (as my friend Apes would say) my house so SpouseBuzz's timing was perfect!

Here are the results of the February challenge:

Counter top organization

Medicine box - no more expired meds.

The medicine cabinet. Not a lot of medicine in there.

Under the cabinet. Cleaning supplies are downstairs.

Linens on the bottom.

Everyday stuff/first aid supplies in the middle.

Extras and candles up top.

The 2009 challenge is a great way to systematically work your way through your house, getting things organized. January had us organizing our Christmas supplies. I took the pictures, I just never managed to get the pictures to Andi. If you want to participate (there are PRIZES!!!), go HERE to read how. It's not too late!

I dare you!

And if you do take on the challenge, make a comment and let everyone know.


Wrote this six years ago. Nothing's changed.  One of my favorite movies is 'Bull Durham'. And one of my favorite scenes in ...