Thursday, November 8, 2012

All I wanted was a tuna sandwich

Woke up this morning with a slight kink in my neck, (I slept with his pillow instead of mine) and woke up to CNN (yes I sleep with the tv on… I go to sleep to the sounds of Anderson Cooper). I managed to drag myself out of bed after turning off the duck quack alarm that Sarah has set to my phone at 6:30am. I took a drag of my morning inhalers. (It’s how I start my day, every day)

Going thru my normal routine with Sarah … 

Sarah: hurry mom I don’t want to be late!   

Me: You are not going to be late... let the dogs out

Sarah: are you ready yet?   Hurry!

After getting in the car our conversation kind of goes like this.

Sarah: drive faster! Change lanes… go around that car. Why are you in this lane?

Me: I’m the adult here, I’m the one driving. Please be quiet and let me drive.

Sarah: I don’t want to be late… I still have to get my sweats from my friend. I let her borrow them.

Me: What? You let somebody borrow your sweats? And you’re going to wear them after she used them and got them sweaty? Sarah really? You do not lend out your P.E. clothes… ever!

Sarah: Okay mom … sorry please drive faster.

Me: You are lucky that I am driving you to school. Would you prefer to get up at 6am and take two buses!

Sarah: I would but you won’t let me until I get a phone! And you won’t let me get a phone until I change my attitude!

Me: Exactly!

Sarah: But Dad… he drives fast, he goes around cars, he … this, he … that, he knows,  etc…

Me: I am NOT your Father! HE is not here! Deal with it!

Sarah: Silence… and then the rush of tears.  

I lost it… yes my patience went out the window. I felt horrible for yelling at her. She pushed my buttons, she raised her voice, she’s a twelve year old… trying to tell ME how to drive. Then  to make things worse. I start coughing and wheezing… stress is an asthma trigger me. This is how my morning went… all before 9am. 

So I drop her off, she gets out without looking at me and without saying a word. I try to put myself in her 12 year old mindset. She must think I am the meanest mom in the world. She’s missing her dad. At this point I am just trying to catch my breath as I pull away from her school feeling like the worst mom ever.

I then decide okay… let me take a breather. I stop at the bagel shop, order a bagel, coffee, juice and while I’m here …order a tuna sandwich for lunch (tuna on sourdough). Pay the guy $12..Easy right?  I get everything except my sandwich. I sit down eat my bagel, drink my coffee. Still no sandwich … so I go and ask the lady behind the counter for it. 

She says: “Sorry mam you no pay for the sandwich.” 
Me:  “yes I did, check your register receipts.”  Really folks… I all I want is a tuna sandwich.
She calls over the guy that took my order... while glaring at me.
He says: You didn’t pay for the tuna.
Me:  What? Yes I did.
He says:  “You only paid for the bread”.
Me: Why would I order 2 slices of bread?  I ordered a tuna salad sandwich on sourdough toast. Any reserve of patience has now been depleted….at this point I’m breathing hard again about to lose my cool, people behind me are getting annoyed.
Me: please give me my money back.   

He gave me back a $1.25 for the two slices of bread.  No sorry, no let me make you a sandwich, no nothing. ...yup that’s how my morning went. 

On the bright side… I got a call from Tim in the middle of all of this. I got to hear his voice even if just for a few minutes. Despite my frivolous, menial morning meltdown it’s nothing when compared to the scope of things he is dealing with.    (Thank you USO for providing calling stations)

“Fear less, hope more; Eat less, chew more; Whine less, breath more; Talk less, say more; Love more, and all good things will be yours! ” – Swedish Proverb.

Monday, November 5, 2012

November is here

 November is here! I've not had a chance to update this blog. However I will share a few pictures of the last few weeks. Sarah and I took a day trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium and explored the sea creatures and took in some much needed ocean air and pacific breezes.  Halloween came and went, we carved (she) her pumpkin, I painted dolls. For Dia de los Muertos I set up a altar in memory of my father who passed away around this time last year.

Tim and I were blessed to spend the weekend together before starting this journey of deployment in Charleston South Carolina. Lots of love and Southern hospitality.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Our spot

It's nothing fancy or frilly, it's a little rusty actually. It's simply where we hang out in the summer, listen to our favorite music, share our favorite wine, munch on our favorite snacks, you puff on your cigars while I paint my latest creation. It's what we do there in our spot.

I let the dogs out this morning like I always do. It dawned on me that this spot, our spot...just isn't the same without you. So yes it makes me sad but rather than mope I promise to keep your Bustelo can (ash tray) just where you left it. I'll continue to paint out there, I'll continue to play our favorite music and maybe even have some wine. I'll stand out there at night and in the morning (when I let the dogs out) knowing that we share the same sun, the same moon and stars. They pass over me like they will pass over you. I'll be here still in our little spot waiting for you.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Staying busy

It's only been a week and I can honestly say no major melt downs yet! I say yet because I know at some point they will come. We all have them, but when you are missing someone I think they tend to happen more often. From the last deployment I learned that it's better to stay busy and keep my mind occupied. Too much time spent thinking about the things I cannot change or the unknown is just a waste of time and it just sends me into a spiral of worry. (Something I can do without.) So this deployment I plan to stay busy with some breaks for times to renew and refresh.

This weekend was a busy one. Friday night Sarah and I went to SOMARTS in San Francisco to see their opening Dia de Los Muertos Art Exhibit. The best part was spending a little time with amigas I hadn't seen in long while. (I need to do this more often) There were so many beautiful altares/memorials to loved ones that have passed on.  Taking Sarah to art shows is important to me. I want to expose her to more cultura, art and life outside of quiet Foster City. We got inspired and made some crafts Friday night when we got home. (see my art blog for tutorial).

Saturday we spent the day in Half Moon Bay at the annual Pumpkin Festival. We explored the art booths, pumpkin patch and simply enjoyed just being outside. I love the ride out to the coast. It's a beautiful ride on hwy 92 ... being in nature is so renewing to me. It always reminds me of how great and wonderful God is... when I'm in it... it feels like I'm getting a great big hug from God.

Sunday we went to church. Spoke briefly to Pastor Paul who is always so encouraging. 

After church we stopped in RWC to deliver a painting and picked up some crafting supplies from the party store. We vegged a little on the couch and watched some Halloween decorating, baking, and some travel channel . (I own the remote when he is away...that means no football or baseball and more chickflicks, cooking shows, and DIY shows).

Sunday night we made a batch of cold porcelain (glue & corn starch) for another craft project we are working on this week. The cornstarch and glue got into everything and made a mess of the kitchen but I guess that's the fun part of crafting.

I didn't get to talk to him much this weekend ... but we did sneak in a few texts here and there to remind each other we are thinking about each other. Communication is how we will survive this time apart. So whether it's a simple text, email, two minute call when he has some down time... filling each other in on what's happening here at home and a quick brief on what he is doing. Week 1 down... lots more to go.


Thursday, October 11, 2012

It's fuzzy, brown and ugly

The temperature is changing here in the Bay Area. You can feel it ...Fall is here.

I had such a hard time getting out of bed this morning it was so cold. I'm so used to rolling over and reaching for him on cold days like today. I woke up and had the sad realization that he wasn't there. But he did leave me something. It's fuzzy, brown and ugly. I call it his Linus security blanket. It's probably the ugliest sad looking fleece blanket you've ever seen. He picked it up on the last deployment 6 years ago. We literally fight over this ugly thing because it is so warm. I've never won the nightly fight or better yet tug a war for this treasured "blankie" until today. This morning I wrapped myself in it and snuggled for a little while longer. Kind of silly that the ugliest blanket in the world could be so comforting to me. It won't replace him but it comes in a close second.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


For the past 4 or 5 weeks we have been saying our goodbyes and celebrating the holidays early with friends & family. So I just want to give everyone a big thank you. You are all amazing and I am so grateful for those prayers that were promised. Now that his deployment has started I will face each day with gratitude even when it gets tough as I know it will. Thank you familia and amigos for showing us what it means to have the love and support of family. 

You cannot be grateful and bitter.
You cannot be grateful and unhappy.
You cannot be grateful and without hope.
You cannot be grateful and unloving.
So just be grateful.

 (author unknown)

Saturday, October 6, 2012

American Flag art

American Flag by one if my favorite artists. Roy Lichtenstein 1985

San Francisco bay area military wives support group

After several weeks of trying to find a local support group for military spouses and not finding one I came to the conclusion that if it didn't exist I would create one. I reached out to my local vice-mayor and she agreed to meet with me. We had coffee and talked about the need for a local support group and that we would both do our homework, more research and stay in touch. I'm encouraged and confident that it will happen. I will post here and update you all on our progress.Thank you again Vice Mayor Frisella for taking time from your busy schedule to meet with me. I'm sending this out to the masses. If you are a military spouse and live in the SF. Bay Area and are looking for support please contact me via this blog or leave a comment or email me at

Thursday, October 4, 2012

While he is away

This journey started about 24 years ago when I met my husband. He used to talk about joining the military and wanting to serve. We married, had 3 kids and well... lived our lives. After September 11th, he said to me... "I have to do something, I have to serve". That was as you know many years ago ... fast forward to today and we are now facing another deployment the first one was in 2006. It was tough and I expect this one will also have it's challenges. I started this blog to help me journal my way through it and hopefully help another person facing the same challenges. When you go through something sometimes the most helpful words you can hear from another person are "me too". Not to commiserate with each other, but to simply know that you are not alone. I'm not sure really what I'll write about other than to say I will simply write about life here at home and all that it encompasses, while he is away. Here we go!