Showing posts with label military. Show all posts
Showing posts with label military. Show all posts

Monday, November 12, 2012

Happy Veterans Day

Last night, Tyler wrote the note below and gave it to Phil to pass along to his boss:

Dear Dennis
I am writing about the situation of Veteran's Day because my dad is in the Navy and is a veteran and does not have the day off. If you could please change that it would be very appreciated.

Thank you,
A Random Person


Thank you to all our men and women in uniform; those who have served us in the past and those serving now. Thank you to your friends and family for being your support system. Your service and sacrifice mean so much.

Happy Veterans Day!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Military Life is NOT a Video Game

It's the Soldier, not the reporter who has given us the 
Freedom of the Press. 
It's the Soldier, not the poet, who has given us the 
Freedom of Speech. 
It's the Soldier, not the politicians who ensures our right to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. 
It's the Soldier who salutes the flag, who serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag.

It seemed disrespectful for me to post this on Veteran's Day because I'm about to violate one of the rules of parenting. I'm going to get on my high horse and judge.

Last week, Phil went into Tyler's class to talk about being in the military. He went in uniform, which because of what he does, is more Marine Corps than Navy. The kids had lots of questions, the first of which was "have you ever killed anyone?*"

I understand. My dad used to get the same question from my classmates when he'd come for Career Day to talk about being in the Secret Service. There's a fascination with military, police etc.; especially for boys. But the questions that came after were the ones that really disappointed me. They wanted to know how he made it through war (he was deployed during Operation Enduring Freedom), what types of weapons and rounds he uses, if he'd ever set off a grenade and if he uses Nova Gas.

Tyler's teacher was sitting next to me and whispered, "where are they coming up with this stuff?!" Just as I replied, "video games," two of the kids said something about Call of Duty 3 and Halo. Parents, your fourth graders should not be playing that game (or any first person shooter). They should not have the idea that being in the military is akin to running blindly through the streets, lobbing bombs and using a gas that doesn't exist.

The teacher and I had to steer the conversation so that Phil could give them real information about the role of the military and what the experience has been like for him. I piped up and told Phil to address real life versus video games and couldn't help but add that Call of Duty isn't for kids.

I'm glad Phil went in to talk to the class. Hopefully, some of those kids will remember what Phil talked about, especially how being in the military has helped him with his civilian job and that he joined as a way to honor his grandfather, who was in the 101st Airborne. 

Video games are not a teaching tool. Video games rated M (meaning 'mature') are not appropriate for 9 and 10 year olds. Period. You letting your young child play games like that means they see my husband in uniform and equate him with a killing machine.

They don't see the training, education and schooling. They don't see that Phil is in charge of planning yearly budgets for his entire unit. They don't see the respect he and his fellow navy members give one another. They have no idea that being in the military is a JOB. And that? Is just plain sad.

*When Phil responded that no, he hasn't killed anyone, the boy asked, "why not?"

Friday, July 30, 2010

A Moment of Silence

I watched the Today Show this morning and heard a statistic that July 2010 is officially the deadliest month for soldiers in Iraq since the war began 9 years ago. The newscaster read off the information as part of a news roundup. It took about 10 seconds, if that.

I know the war is a loaded topic. I know it's not a "feel good" way for people to start their day. I know it's not part of the growing trend of entertainment passing as hard news. But.

We are losing men and women every day. People who have voluntarily raised their hands and taken an oath to protect our country and our freedoms. Husbands, wives, mothers and fathers are getting the news that someone they love will be coming home in a flag covered coffin.

It's heartbreaking that Chelsea Clinton's wedding and Ellen leaving American Idol got more coverage (several minutes more) than the record setting deaths of our men and women in uniform.

As July comes to an end, please take a moment, offer a prayer or have a moment of silence for the brave men and women we've lost. We can show our military that though the news media doesn't think they're important, their fellow Americans do.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Aw, Shucks It Was Nothing

Remember my expiring coupons? I got this note yesterday. It made me smile and I had to share:

Melanie-
Thank you so very much for the coupons! I invited two friends over last night and the three of us sorted, clipped and organized coupons for several hours! We all filled our binders full and there are still TONS left. Today I dropped off the rest of the box to the library on post [base] so that other families can share them. You have no idea how many families you have helped - we really appreciate it! My husband couldn't believe it when he realized the box wasn't from a relative but a "stranger." :D Thanks again!
-ML

I sent the box right before Mother's Day. I was in a hurry and didn't remember to take a picture of the stack of coupon inserts before I took it to mail, but the woman at the post office said the box weighed a little over 14 pounds! I wanted it to be a surprise and didn't tell ML it was coming. She sent me two books of stamps which is so darn cute. It's very true that every little bit helps. One small gesture on your end can make a big impact on someone else. Pay it forward when you can.

Thank you to the men and women in our armed services and 
their families!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Happy Veteran's Day

Patriotic play last year at Tyler's school

Right now my son is upstairs coloring a photo for his Dad for Veteran's Day. It's the planting of the flag at Iwo Jima. If we ask Tyler what he wants to be when he grows up, he usually gives us several things ranging from football player to policeman. But 'soldier' is usually a constant. I've told Phil before that, as Tyler gets older, we need to talk with him about it and change his mind.

But lately I've been thining about my position and where it comes from. I see his little face now, as a child, and I can't picture the man he's going to be. I have that Mother Bear need to keep him safe and with no future insight into what the political climate will be by the time he's 18, the idea of him putting on a uniform scares me.

But, I'm proud of my husband for his service. Being in the military was good for Phil. Who says it won't be good for Tyler too? It's not up to me whether he joins. It's a decision I hope Tyler will include his parents in but ultimately it's up to him. I can't applaud others for their desire and willingness to serve their country but not apply that to my own son.

Who knows what the future holds? But, for now, I have decided not to try and dissuade Tyler from any military aspirations. It wouldn't be fair to him.

Happy Veterans Day to the men and women who put on their uniforms out of a love for their country, a desire to serve and a sense of patriotism and honor. Your service to our country is appreciated today and all days!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Help Spread The True Meaning of Christmas

I have read that perhaps this current economic crisis will be a much needed wake up call of sorts. We, as consumers (and I raise my hand here because I totally like my stuff) should take this opportunity to re-examine and re-evaluate our shopping and spending habits.

We should make more of an effort to buy American, buy local and buy sustainable. We should become a better example to our kids of what "people over possessions" really means, particularly over the holidays.


Helping the military and their families is a cause that's really important to me. I'll never forget the generosity of the small business my
husband was working for when he was activated after 9/11. They gave him a small salary while he was gone which was so helpful to me since I was managing the household alone.

Not every military family can say the same. Despite the housing allowance and commissary, many families still really struggle to make ends meet, and it can leave parents feeling frustrated and depressed.


Here are a few organizations I've come across who have cheap, easy or free ways to send some holiday love to our men and
women in uniform. because morale is so important.

*I found Wish Upon a Hero through an affiliate program I belong to.

Anyone can post a wish for something they want or need. I've used it to ask for help with the postcards and DVD player for my soldier and have gotten a nice response. I've also granted wishes by sending cards and postcards. There are many people looking for "small" but meaningful wishes that won't cost you much, if anything (free to join the site).

*Xerox has set up a
site where you choose a postcard and they will mail it to a military member FREE (thanks Thrifty Mommy!).





*I saw eMail Our Military on Mommy Pie's site and had to look into it.

eMailOurMilitary

They have so many projects to contribute to (more than listed here):
  • Postcards
  • Care Packages
  • Soup for the Troops
  • Voice mail messages
  • Artwork from kids (great for a Scouts, class or church project)
I did see they require a $2 processing fee but couldn't tell if it's needed for all the activities.

*The
Red Cross is also sending cards to soldiers (postmark deadline 12/10).

*At the Starbucks near me and the Albertson's, shoppers can buy bags of coffee and leave them to be sent to the troops.


*And there is always the Marine Corps Toys for Tots program.


If you know of any other groups supporting the military for the holidays (or any other good causes) please leave it in the comments.

And, with the money pinch so many of us are feeling, will you be taking a more grassroots approach to the holidays?
(*None of theses companies know I've written about them)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Happy Veterans Day

"We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm." -George Orwell


For all those who served, continue to serve and paid the ultimate sacrifice, we thank you.
Photo from him

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Fourth of July

I went to a country bar (I know!) for the first time last weekend with one of my best friends, A. We met a young man stationed at Pt. Magu.

We were in that alcohol induced hazy, lovey, you're so great stage (you know the one). He was talking about being in the service and I said "thank you for what you're doing, here's to you." [insert bottle clink].

American Flag Firework by Boredstr8 via Worth 1000.com
This young man was really well spoken and intelligent (despite the haze) and he said "You don't have to thank me. I'm doing this for me."

Yankee Noodle by Coool Jazz via Worth 1000.com
Well [insert name here if I remembered what it is] I beg to differ. You may have signed up for you, but in doing so, you signed up for me, my family, my friends, my neighbors and everyone else who will spend today in the company of loved ones.

Fourth of July Patriots in the Desert via Worth 1000.com
By you signing up voluntarily, you made it possible for Phil to be here with us, planning tonight's burger fest and brewing his own beer.

Yankee Rose Fourth of July via Worth 1000.com
Thank you to all the men and women both stateside and deployed who will not get to be with their families today.
Thank you to all the family members left behind. May your loved ones return to you safely and soon.

And to our friend G, who is in Iraq for his third tour, we miss you! Tyler needs his Wii Boxing partner. We've got the grill lit and beer on ice.


Photo credits via Worth100.com top to bottom: Bored Str8, Coool JazzzBrownTrout, eDorie

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Eat More Chickin and Go Outback Tonight

Hurry! Chick fil A restaurants are hosting military appreciation night TONIGHT! Active, retired and reservists (that's us!) and their immediate families eat FREE! The hours are 5-8. I would call and confirm with the restaurant in your area before you go. *UPDATE* At our location, we will be required to check in and show ID. They will then give us a set menu to order from that is our "meal ticket" to present to the cashier. Immediate family only.


In celebration of Dad, Outback Steakhouse is having a Outback's Dad's Day promotion. Take your husband, Dad, Grandad, uncle, etc. etc. to Outback on Father's Day (Sunday, 6/15) and they will receive a certificate good for $10 on their next visit.


Activate the certificate at http://outback.com/dadsday (the link will not be live before June 15th) and they will also be automatically entered to win a $100 gift card! That's a lot of Bloomin' Onions! The certificate can be used at any Outback location from June 18th - July 20th (a minimum $25 purchase is required). That's a pretty good deal, especially if you were planning to go anyway.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Supporting Our Troops

I won't get into politics or my feelings about the war here (at least not today). But I do believe a person can be supportive of our troops and their families without being in support of the war.

And I think that support is vital.
I can't imagine the stress of having to be a "single" parent while your husband or wife is away, often for months at a time. Or, having to live in a foreign country for years at a time, away from relatives. My hat is off to the people who are in these situations, and I pray their loved ones come home safely.


A few weeks ago I decided to send my unused grocery coupons to a military base. I've done it before, but it was a long time ago. This time, I wanted to have more of a hometown connection.


I went to Meetup.com to look for a local military wives group and found one on Pendleton. I sent an email and they were happy to hear from me even though I wasn't joining their group. 

I'm ready to send off my second batch. It doesn't take me a lot time, only costs a few stamps and is the least I can do. If anyone is interested please let me know and I'll get the information to you.

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