Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Care Packages For Your Soldier

Military wife; a title that would accurately describe me. Confused as to why our men and women are stationed in the middle of a desert is how I'm feeling. Nun; Not yet, but for how long I've been celibate, I have a feeling it wont be long until I'm a virgin again. That last sentence wasn't really relevant but it doesn't matter. For you military wives who have gone through a deployment, you should have a general idea of what I'm talking about. For those of you who have not yet, you're in for a surprise (and you may want to get yourself a B.O.B. in the meantime. Just to prepare).

Aside from the previous paragraph, this blog entry is directed toward anybody who has friends or family in the military and is interested in sending care packages. I know there are other blogs out there and websites which list items to send via care package, but for those of you who stumble upon this first, it saves you the trouble of looking for another (I also know I blogged a small list before, but this includes more with better descriptions and fancy links).

Here is a list of things which would be good to send to your soldier:

  • Jerky
  • Popcorn (pre-popped and can be flavored; Cheese, caramel, herb infused, whatever: you get the point. There are many companies out there like Fritolay with Smart Food as well as other brands.)
  • Ramen
  • Ketchup (Just don't be a cheapass when buying and sending ketchup, nobody likes bad ketchup.)
  • Peanut Butter
  • Jam/Jelly (Plastic container recommended)
  • Crackers
  • Cookies (Whether it be freshly baked at home, Chips Ahoy!, Keebler, Mothers. Most cookies should be safe to send, although I would steer away from obvious kinds that would melt en route.)
  • Headphones (In ear or even a good set of Deejays.)
  • Empty Spray Bottles
  • Personal Battery Operated Mini Fan
  • Colgate wisps (Some locations these are not necessary, but if your soldier does not have continuous access to a bathroom these are a godsend.)
  • Granola bars
  • Oatmeal
  • Blankets (Although many of our soldiers are stationed in the desert, do not be mistaken that it's boiling hot there all the time, it gets pretty freakin cold there in the winter.)
  • Pictures (Not all soldiers have access to electricity or the internet all the time. Facebook is not a guarentee. Print out some hard copies and send them. Walgreens and CVS have generally cheap prices on prints.)
  • Deodorant
  • Razer Blades (For shaving.)
  • Boots (Extra pair of military grade combat boots can come in handy, especially if your soldier is an unusual size)
  • Pens
  • Highlighters
  • Sharpies
  • Fabric softener sheets
  • M&Ms
  • Console Games (XBOX, PS3, Wii. Some companies like Gamefly will send games directly to your soldier at their FOB.)
  • Handheld Device Games (PSP, Gameboy Advance)
  • Lithium Rechargeable Battery (For handheld devices: iPOD, cell phones, PSP. Lenmar Battery, or similiar devices.)
  • Poptarts
  • Canned Soup
  • Instant Soup Mix
  • Ready Mixers (Made by Healthy Choice)
  • Homestyle Creations ( Marie Callendars)
  • Instant Coffee
  • Trail Mix
  • Nuts
  • Holiday Themed Items (I would avoid real pumpkins, real Christmas trees, rabbits, chicks or any other living things)
  • Letters
  • Books
  • Magazines
  • Tooth Brushes
  • Rice Crispy Treats (Individually packaged recommended)
  • Portable Hard Drives (With music, movies and pictures stored on it)
  • Extra bags (Sandwich size, quart size, gallon. I'm sure they come in handy.)
  • Qtips
  • .5"-1" Paint Brushes (To clean guns)
  • Hard Candy (Life Savers, Jolly Ranchers, etc.)
  • Chapstick
  • Soap
  • Gum
  • Hot Chocolate Packages
  • Easymac

There are many locations where you can pick up these items: Walmart, Target, local supermarket. And it is unnecessary to send all the items in one box. Most of these items are not needed, but they do make the stay over seas a little more comfortable on our soldiers.

It is recommended to bag your items in a trash bag before you slip them into the box you are sending just to avoid leaks and water/fluid damage to your own parcel. Otherwise, your soldier has an extra bag to store personal items, trash or can even use it as a fashion item.

When sending packages from the USA, the best and cheapest way to send your packages is via USPS Flat Rate Box which ships anywhere domestic or APO/AE for one flat rate, more if you'd like to put insurance on it.

There are other obviously other things you can send, these are just things listed for those of you who haven't the vaguest clue on what to send.

For those of you who don't want to go to the trouble of putting together your own care package, you can go to different websites which package and ship variety of care packages. Troop Care Pack, Military Care Packages dot Net, I'm sure you can google more.

To see other items and restrictions based on your soldiers location, you can go to

I hope the list and links help!

Friday, September 17, 2010

As this summer comes to a close...

The summer's almost over, which means fall is on it's way. This year will be the first year in my life where I'll be able to experience fall in all it's glory, followed by winter and then lovely spring. Had you told me a few years ago that I'd be freezing my ass off next to Canada in the winter of 2010, I would have laughed. Now I'm not sure if I want to cry. What I am pretty certain of, is this winter I am most definitely going to need an electric blanket wrapped around me 24/7. Hello cancer! Here I'm already complaining about how cold I'm going to get and I'm not even to that point yet.

Seeming as it's the end of summer, maybe I ought to chat about that instead? Alright, if you insist. This past summer has been one hell of a ride. Getting married at the end of May to Combat Boots, then him leaving a few days later to be deployed to Afghanistan to fight in a war that shouldn't even concern us because it's been going on forever, is how my summer began for me. After he was shipped off, I spent a month and a half in California packing and tying up loose ends. Attended some social gatherings, skipped out on working Circus at the Honda Center and in July I was on the road with my father and this cute little devil on the way to Tennessee.

Bailey and I spent three (not so) blissful weeks staying with my aunt and her husband before I got a uhaul and gtfo out of there. We made our two day drive north and crash landed smack dab in the middle of Maine at my in-laws. I love them. They treat me like a human. A real human. I like being treated like a real human. And they say they love me (Well, my mother in-law does anyway) :). And within the first week of being here, I found a nice little house for me and the pup to wait out the rest of Combat Boot's deployment in.

Four months in and I'm ready for it to be over. I am so ready for him to come home. I hate to sound sappy, but it really just doesn't feel right without him and his ridiculous smile. I swear this deployment shit was thought up by eunuchs, because no sane strait man with lovely wife and family would want to leave (unless his wife is a bitch and his family sucks, but even then...). Although I can't speed along his deployment, I do try to make it go by easier with care packages once or twice a month with some of the creature comforts of home:
Peanut butter
Chips ahoy cookies
Empty spray bottles
Colgate wisps
Granola bars
Slutty pictures of his wife
Not so slutty pictures of his wife
Pictures of the pup
Razer blades for shaving
Extra pair of combat boots
Fabric softener sheets
Homemade Cookies
Xbox Games
PS3 Games
And some more things

Creature comforts seem to be a plus for most the soldiers and I know my husband appreciates them.

That seems about all, hopefully I'll start making up dog treats again as soon as I move into my new place and if I do, I expect you to buy for your canine's yummy needs. :)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Tied The Knot

On the 27th of May, Combat Boots and I tied our union down at the county courthouse. We wore our finery, went to a nice dinner that evening and got a hotel room with an in room jacuzzi, jaaaa. It was a planned ordeal which was supposed to originally occur in February, not May, but because one of his superior officers had a hair up his butt one day, it got pushed back. We finally got to tie the knot and I'm happy we did. I'm not very happy that we only had two weeks with each other, though.

He was granted his two weeks of leave before his deployment to towelhead land, which he had to leave to within a week from when he got back to his station. We spent an amazing two weeks spending time with each other and family. One week at his parents house in Maine; one week at my father's house in California. Maine was gorgeous and beautiful, California pissed me off. I hate traffic. Especially California traffic where everybody drives like an asshole. About half the time we were in California we were either smothered by my G-ma or stuck in traffic.

Although we had such a limited time, we enjoyed each other in Maine, where we spent time out together or with on of his siblings or even just with a few of his relatives. Except for when we got called up in front of his mother's church. I didn't really enjoy that. Nope, not really. In California, we enjoyed each other and food. That would sum up California pretty good, other than we were both about ready to throw my G-ma overboard.

We started out our marriage healthy and happy. He leaves for Afghanistan this weekend which makes me nervous, but I'm sure he'll make it home in one piece and I'm sure our marriage will survive the year he'll be gone. 'Cause if we can make it through a year of him gone living in a war zone, we can damn near make it through anything.

Monday, April 12, 2010

The Gopher Mocks Me

For the past year, my backyard has had a Gopher which undoubtedly has turned into the Gopher and it's offspring, which has continued to tunnel and tear up my yard. We've shoved the hose down countless of fresh holes (One time even managing to get it stuck four feet in the ground. Intelligent fucking rodent). We've shoved poison down its holes. We've sat outside with BB and pellet guns, waiting for it to rear it's small little rodent head out of one of its many holes. I've even sprayed the entire backyard with weed killer in order to try to deter it, kill it, make it go away.

It won't leave. It won't leave permanently, anyway. It seems to pop in between my horny neighbors' yard and my own, and probably some of the other neighbors yards as well. No matter what we seem to do to get rid of it, shy of blowing up the backyard, doesn't seem to work and since it's been mocking me the past two days, I'm even more determined to kill it.

We've been tearing down the pool we've had in the backyard for about the past ten years or so, a rather large dough-boy. It's gone through numerous liners which all seem to fail and allow grass to grow through, it's suffered through the Gopher tunneling under it, making some parts underneath the liner cave and sink. And It's suffered from greenness (lack of chemicals). It just got to the point where it was hard to keep up with the upkeep of it, especially since chemicals aren't cheap, so it was decided that we (as in me) tear it down. And the Gopher seems to enjoy mocking me while I carry out this mission.

Yesterday, while pulling pool parts onto the concrete so the lack of sun wouldn't kill the grass (or what's left of it), the gopher presented itself two feet away from me, nibbling on some grass. I lacked in hand killing tools, and as I reached for the area I heard it (with gloves on of course), it got away. I shoved a handful of poison in three of the holes nearby and when I went to put the poison away, one of them had been filled in by time I had returned. I hoped the poison would take effect.

Today, while filling in the area where the pool had been in, I came across a tunnel in our man-made hill which I was getting the dirt from. I continued on digging and filling up the pool area, when suddenly the Gophers little rodent head reared itself out of one side of the tunnel. Bye time the shovel had come down where its head had been, it was gone (and not in a dead way).

I am determined to kill it, but the poison doesn't seem to work. Trying to drown it doesn't seem to work. Weed killer doesn't seem to help. My dog is defective, he doesn't seem to help. And trying to shoot it doesn't seem to work either with the network of tunnels it hides in. I need explosives. Because it will die, one way or another.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Off Limits

There are definitely points in time in my life where I just want to turn around, bitch slap someone and say “what the fuck”. Especially to my neighbor.

Ever since he’d moved in next door he’s been oogling me to the point of even trying to make a go for my pants. Not that I didn’t look when he first moved in (before he acquired a beer belly and a disturbing red beard), I did. But I was also desperate (very). I hadn’t had much (any) male contact for about two years which had been even remotely similar to dating.

When I had started going out with guys again, he took notice. By that time I had definitely lost interest in my not so hot neighbor. However, he’d watch my dates walk me up to my porch after our date (or in some cases see the pathetic jerks drive off). Then take that as his que to launch right in through text message, calling, or sometimes catching me unawares while I’d be out going to my car or collecting mail. Poor fool for not realizing I wasn’t interested. And I, not having the heart to tell him off, just tried avoiding him.

He was fairly persistent though, especially when I’d been dating Air Force Fag. He could have seen us together and by time Air Force Fag had driven off, I’d be getting invited next door. He didn’t think it was a problem I had a boyfriend. He just wanted to have a little fun with no strings attached.

No strings attached you say Not So Hot neighbor? Well aren’t you just a barrel of laughs. Being the type of person I am, I could never cheat. Even if I knew a relationship would never last. And if I were to be tempted to cheat, wouldn’t I want it to be with somebody remarkably better looking? With somebody who had a bit more to talk about than weed, baseball and hockey? I am more content at the moment with sitting and talking with my fiancĂ© about absolutely nothing and watch him pick his nose, than sit there with my neighbor and talk about that crap. I have almost no interest in sports and I hate drugs. I’m pretty sure that would cut down the topics of conversation.

Even when he has been told off, he just hangs out on the sidelines, still watching me wash my car or do yard work. Occasionally he’d text message me, which is somewhat easy to ignore.

I guess I just don’t understand how many times you need to tell a person no in order for them to get the picture and just move on. It's not that I play hard to get; I don't. I play 'I'm off limits, don't touch me.'

Friday, April 2, 2010

The Little Things

It's interesting that something as simple as a letter can bring a smile to your face.

On my never ending quest to get the house ready to go, I came across the stack of letters I'd received from my fiance when he was in basic. They were sitting nice and orderly next to a pile of school work on the floor in my former bedroom. I grabbed them and sat on my parents' ridiculously over sized California King bed and sat there, pouring over them. Reading them in the order they had been sent.

At the time we hadn't been a couple. Just good friends who were obviously attracted to each other, but each of us held back by something (Mostly just stupidity, on my part anyway). To sum it up, I was wasting my time with an Air Force Fag, and he had just gotten out of something with a woman I prefer to refer to as Harpy.

He'd left off to basic in March, on his birthday. I kept giving him my address and made him promise to write me, after all, he wasn't going to be giving my phone seizures anymore with our constant text messaging so how else was I supposed to talk to him? They took his phone when he got there.

I was so anxious to get his first letter, with our line of communication hindered, it felt like something was missing. When I finally did get my first, my father had brought it in and gave me a smile and a hard time over receiving something from him. Apparently it was quite a shocker when we asked his permission on marriage. Harhar Daddy, harhar.

The phone calls that he managed to make my way when he'd finished talking to his family, the letters, the text messages. I'm not sure if it could have been any more obvious. Had I known a year from then that I'd be engaged to that man, it would have made a lot more sense. However, had I known five years ago that we'd be getting married, I'm sure both he and I would have gotten quite a laugh out of it.

There's a fine line between love and hate. And Sometimes you have to do one before you can get the other.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Five Minutes From Now

I've always considered myself somewhat of a writer. Not a dedicated blogger or diary writer, I don't chronicle-ize every event or detail of my life. As far as I know, there aren't even many pictures of the major events which have taken place in it. Not like anybody would recognize me in half of them anyway. I was a fat kid. I liked cake, as well as most things with sugar.

Getting back to my point, I've been feeling the itch to write lately. Not the stories I can never finish because my mind drifts to a completely different idea after the first chapter or two have been written. Not my classy rhyming animal story-poems which everybody seems to love getting (courtesy of six to seven text messages in a single minute while I'm bored at work). Not even my normal poems. I've just been wanting to write; write about something, nothing, anything. I'd been pushing off creating a new blog or journal for a few weeks, but tonight I need to get it out of my system and I'll have the common decency to hit it on a sad depressing note that hits home.

Five minutes from now, would be my parents twenty fifth anniversary. It would also be the day my mother died. It was the end of a long struggle which involved breast cancer, big rigs, pack-rat tendencies, brain tumors, hospitals, designated time of living allotted, strokes, doctors, pack rat tendencies, Race For the Cure, free samples, garage sales, yard sales, coma, pack rat tendencies, bad motor skills, another coma, and finally kicking the bucket. I don't know if I mentioned the pack rat tendencies, because those were absolutely horrible (I'm still cleaning up after them. I don't understand why somebody would need so much useless junk).

On a more serious note, I did love my mother, I still do. How could you not love the woman who carried you in her womb for nine months and probably went through hell in order to evacuate you from her uterus prison? Then proceeded to raise you with love and affection, even if she did have somewhat of an odd sense of humor. She was a strong woman who drove trucks, and apparently wore three inch heels when she did it and didn't swear like a longshoreman. She fought through a life threatening illness starting with the breasts, migrating up to her head, suffering from a major stroke and two minor, pulling out of a coma and raising two children. She was a fighter and a survivor.

She also had a knack for collecting useless crap. And lots of it. Heaven forbid if you drove past a garage sale (or a yard sale or an open house) sign and didn't hunt for that fucker in one of those intricate maze of a neighborhood. Nor could she pass up a Pick-N-Save (currently known as Big Lots) without stopping. After she had stopped driving (after her first stroke), her fellow drivers would joke that the company trucks she had driven were programmed to stop at them. Did I mention she had a fascination for free stuff? She had a fascination for free stuff, no matter what it was, and she was determined to stuff it, cram it and coax it into every nook, cranny, and crevice which wasn't filled with her garage sale/Pick-N-Save stuff.

My mother definitely had her hobbies, but writing to complain about them and how I'm still cleaning up after them really wasn't my intention.

Five minutes from now, that strong, fighter of a woman was on her death bed, in a coma she wasn't going to come out of. She had been in hospice care for a week, taken off of life support after a couple week struggle in CCU because the doctors said if she actually pulled through that time, she'd hardly be more than a vegetable (with a tracheotomy). I think telling the doctors to pull the plug was one of the harder things I've ever had to do in my life and it was done as a group effort with my brother and my father.

We shuffled in that week: me, my brother(who I keep wanting to refer to as Idiot. Is that so mean? Ah, hell, Idiot), my mother's sister, G-ma (because my grandma is so gangsta, not really), various other family member's I'm not going to touch base on tonight, and some of my mother's support group friends. Each of us sat there almost in turns, sometimes together, sometimes alone with my mom. We'd pass the time by reading or listening to music and I remember going out and buying Dumbo and Grease on DVD so I could pop it in my laptop and hoping that she might like watching one of her favorite movies before she was gone. Not once since my mother was moved to the nursing home did my father go see her, and frankly I don't blame him for not. He's not the type of person who's ever been good with hospitals or death (not like anyone is). I couldn't blame him especially after her last full day, because that's when the death rattle began. It's a sound I never hope to hear again in my life. It's a sound I hope most people never have to hear. Like ever.

I remember when I finally convinced him to go see her for the last time, not long after seven pm. We didn't even make it out the garage when my mother's sister called him and as far as I know, she didn't even say anything. We rushed over to get Idiot after that, who's street of residence of the time was blocked off by the police because of a high speed chance which had just ended there (convenient, eh?). The rest of it is rather easy to gather, I'd imagine. It's not something I really like thinking about, not like I like thinking about any of it because it's quite depressing. I'm not sure if it's horrible, but all I can seem to think about now is how I hope I don't look like that when I die.

Today, Idiot and I will each go at different times to buy flowers and go to the pier to pay our respects. She was cremated and her ashes spread in the ocean. We'll each call our father and either hope he doesn't realize what day it is and have a normal conversation, or somewhat console him.

I know my mother didn't like it when my father forgot about their anniversary, but damn, what a way to make him remember it for the rest of his life.