A full plate

I was bouncing around the internet the other day and came across the job listings for the local school district. I'm always curious to see who is hiring, what positions are open, what the pay scales are, etc. Not that I plan to set foot back in a classroom anytime soon (other than the one that is in my basement) but I like to keep up on things in my profession. While I was meandering around, I came across the listing for a head swim team coach at the local high school.


I could do that. Maybe. So I dropped the Athletic director a note, inquiring as to the particulars of the position: pay, practice times, season dates (boys' and girls' seasons are separate), etc. the information I received back assured me that, yes, I CAN do this. The dates/times/pay all fit in with this thing we call our "schedule". The Boy and The Girl might have to sign on as my assistant coaches each day until MacGyver can pick them up but it won't kill them to spend some time on a pool deck. And I should probably be able to tweak practice times on the days that my EMT class meets so that is a bonus.

I dusted off my resume (actually, I redesigned it thanks to a friend and her advice...it's what she does so, if you are in need of resume advice, drop me an email and I'll give you her contact information. Her rates are quite reasonable!) and my cover letter and filled out the online application. I sent it off this week and now I wait to hear back. I suspect that attaining the job will be the easy part. The logistics of actually performing the job will be the challenge. Homeschooling two children with a husband whose flight schedule is anything but predictable should get interesting. Especially when you throw in a night class to make things interesting. But it will work out. I hope.

If not, the kids will also get to schlep with me to my class and learn all about trauma care. Fun times!

The weather took a turn toward winter this week. Woke up one morning to a low of 23*. My knee is anything but happy about that one and my Raynaud's issues decided to flare again. Wonderful. Though maybe the Raynaud's is a good thing - I can always try to get it classified as an EFMP (exceptional family member program) qualifier and get us sent back to a more temperate/tropical locale...

MacGyver has flown a few more times including some night flights. The Boy and The Girl are not used to this so it's been a bit of an adjustment for them. They don't remember a time when Daddy's schedule was not 9-5. I find it amusing that, for someone who craves routine and predictability (me), I am relieved to have him back on an unpredictable schedule. My brain confounds me most days. He has a few TDY trips coming up (business trips) in the near future so the kids and I will get to experience that part of military life again as well. I need to pop over to my mom's (does anyone 'pop' 1,000+ miles? I don't think so) so we'll probably do that while MacGyver is TDY. We'll see...need to work some logistics out there as well. But I need to get it done before serious winter weather sets in: partly because she has the majority of my winter clothes but mostly because I don't want to be driving across several states in icky weather. And it will be good to see her again. The kids haven't seen her since she was in Hawaii more than a year ago. I'm hoping we get to visit other family that is in the area as well.

Then it will be time to gear up for Thanksgiving. I'm excited to have a Thanksgiving that involves fall temperatures and NOT sweating my okole off in the kitchen. But I am going to desperately miss the big potluck dinner that we normally have at church. I'm counting the days until May when we get to go visit. Hopefully our couches will be here before Thanksgiving.

Tonight it's girls' night out. The kids are hanging with MacGyver and I'm heading out with a good friend. Nothing exciting - dinner and maybe some music. But it will be nice to head out for a bit!


- hfs


Hail and Bail

'Hail and Bail' aka 'Hail and Farewell' aka 3 hours of one's life you'll never get back. It's one of those wonderful events that, when handled at the unit level, can be a lot of fun but, when handled at the Battalion level, is never really the same. MacGyver's been a part of this unit for a whole week and came home in those first few days with a calendar.

Keep in mind the fact that, during my last 2 years in Paradise, I was so far off the FRG's and battalion's radar that I never heard word one about upcoming events. SO I was a little surprised when he brought home a calendar in the first few days that laid out not only social events but training events as well. It's going to take me some time to get back into the swing of this whole "Army wife" thing. Heh.

Anyway, because this was MacGyver's 'hail', we HAD to go. Thankfully, children were welcome because I don't have a babysitter yet. I have to admit, I was really not looking forward to it. At all. Call me a coward. Call me a wuss. I don't care. After the last two years or so, the last place I really want to be is surrounded by a bunch of battalion-level staffers and their spouses. I'm a little gun-shy. It's that whole 'once bitten, twice shy' thing. But I plastered a smile on my face and got dressed.

And I'm glad I did. There weren't too many people from MacGyver's unit there but the few people I did meet were nice. His platoon leader was there and he and his wife seemed quite friendly. And - small world that Army aviation is - we ran into a woman who wrote a letter of of recommendation for MacGyver back when he was applying to flight school. She's retired Army herself and married to the SGM of the battalion. I thought I recognized her when I first saw her but couldn't place her. After the festivities were over, she came up and introduced herself and said hi. Small world! The company commander also introduced himself and made the anticipated pitch about getting involved in the FRG.

I politely declined.

Don't get me wrong - I will go to the meetings, meet the spouses in the unit, attend some events as warranted. But that's as far as it will go. There's some serious scar tissue there.

In more exciting news, after 28 months of being out of the cockpit, MacGyver has flown again! He texted me after he landed with some of the best words I've heard in a while: "I are a pilot!". Alongside from "charges dismissed" and "retained in the United States Army", they brought a smile to my face. Looking back, neither of us thought he'd EVER see the inside of a cockpit again. This was most definitely a sweet, sweet moment. And now, hopefully he'll be flying his proverbial okole off. His future in the Army is very much up in the air so the more hours he can get under his belt, the better off we'll be if he needs to start looking for civilian employment. In the meantime, he's planning to fly as much as possible. And, given the fact that the unit and the battalion are short on MTPs, that shouldn't be a problem!

The settling in process continues to move along. The house is kind of stalled - all of the other rooms are good to go but the living room is still unfinished. We finally ordered living room furniture this weekend but it's going to take about a month to get here. That was the biggest furniture purchase MacGyver and I have made in our entire relationship - made me feel like a grown-up. Ick.

School is going well. The kids are settling in well and have plenty to keep them busy, including friends. That is a huge blessing - it broke my heart to see my daughter so sad and homesick and lonely. My homesickness continues but I can handle it. I pipe Hawaiian music through my phone into my car stereo and I listen to my pastor's sermons online. So denial is a great place! It's getting cooler here but the weather is still quite beautiful! It's just about fall and I can't wait to break out the fall-scented candles and warm sweaters. Oh, wait, I don't have many warm sweaters. I've been shopping Goodwill and the Salvation Army and all of the sales on line in the hopes that I can find a few deals. Most of my warm-weather clothing is at my mom's house so I need to figure out how to get it here. Might be a roadtrip coming up soon!

In the meantime, we are enjoying our time here and reminding ourselves to be thankful that MacGyver is still in the Army and still flying. It doesn't get any better than that!


- hfs


Three years

Time flies.


I miss you, Dad. Mom's doing well. You'd be proud. Or you'd cringe because she's using the hedge trimmer and other power tools...I'm not sure. But she's doing well.



If You Give a Mouse a Cookie

I'm sure you've all heard of the children's book, "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie". There is a spoof on that story titled "If You Give a Mom a Muffin" and both pretty much resemble my life at the moment. I'll get started on something - putting the contents of a box away - and then, in the process of putting something away, I'll come across a window track that is filthy (they are ALL filthy...ick) or items that are in one room but belong in another, or a picture that needs to be hung - and the box is completely forgotten and left sitting half-empty with the contents strewn about. It's moving-related ADD. I wish there was an 'H' to go with that acronym but there is not.

We are still without a couch which makes it challenging, mentally, to get my living room truly put together. And it also makes it tough to have friends over for dinner. I have nowhere for them to sit unless I bring in the beach chairs (um, no.). We drove out to the big city (about 100 miles away) to check out this massive furniture store (and go to COSTCO!!! Good Lord, do I miss Costco!) but didn't really fall in love with anything. We know what we want but we didn't find IT. So we're going to head in the opposite direction this weekend and see what we can find. In the meantime, I scurry around trying to get things put away.

We've sorted through a lot of stuff and already have 2 big boxes set aside for a yard sale. And lots of stuff is also in the "donate" pile as well as in the garbage. I'd love to weigh what we're getting rid of just to know where we stand weight-wise but I can't. Hopefully what we get rid of will outweigh the new furniture we're planning to buy!

Homesickness is hovering and I hate it. The Boy isn't really homesick much, especially now that he has his stuff around him. But The Girl is struggling. She misses her friends, our church, our neighborhood, our activities...everything that is familiar to her. I can't say I blame her. I'd hop back on a plane in a New York minute if I could. But I can't. So I do my best to set it aside, focus on finding things to do here, getting settled in. But there's an ache there that hasn't been there since we left Colorado in 1998. I didn't think I'd ever miss anywhere as much as I miss Colorado. But I do. More so.

MacGyver had his first day at work this week. A lot like your first day at a new school. Thankfully, the Army is small and the Chinook world is even smaller which means we know people here. More than I even expected! We're running into people we've not seen since we left Alaska. It's great! And, in even better news, MacGyver is on the FLIGHT SCHEDULE for next week!!!! I'm so excited, I can barely contain myself. I'm tempted to toss the kids in the car and go spectate. And take pictures. Except that MacGyver would probably throw things at me.

The trees here are just starting to turn colors. I need to take pictures of the trees on the way on to post each day so I can time-lapse them and watch the colors change. I can't wait for it to be full-blown fall. Right now it feels more like summer in Hawaii than fall. Everyone is amazed that it's as warm as it is given the fact that it's the first week in October. I have a feeling, based on a few things that I've heard and seen, that we are in for one hell of a winter. Thankfully, MacGyver's truck is 4-wheel drive and I have experience driving in snow and on ice. I am NOT looking forward to the wind. At all.

More good news on the EMT front. The classes were offered this semester on the two days that most interfere with our family's activities. But NEXT semester, they are changing the days around and the class will be offered on the two days that are perfect for our schedules. I'm hoping to get to the Ed Center on post and get things rolling soon.

There's a "Hail & Bail" coming up soon. We'll see how that goes. I can't say I'm interested in getting involved in anything having to do with the FRG or the unit aside from getting together with friends. It's that whole "once bitten, twice shy" thing.


- hfs


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