Friday, March 11, 2011

Random Friday: Lent, Sadness, and an Education

This is Shana. I am borrowing her Random Musings Friday today and because she doesn't have a button or graphic that I can post, giving her credit for such an awesome meme, I am posting a random picture of her. And I will continue to do so until she creates something. I have an almost unlimited supply, seeing as I also have access to her Facebook page. pressure, Shana. Also, I cannot think of anything more random than Shana and Zoltar, together in Savannah, GA.

  • I must start by saying that y'all rocked the camo-colored socks off of Neal's birthday this week! Thank you so much for your comments, Facebook posts, and emails! He said to me, "I am such a lucky guy!" Not lucky, honey...blessed. And y'all were spreadin' the blessin' around like it was apple butter. Thank you!!!
  • In other Neal news, he is on the advance party that is headed to Iraq. Their primary task is to arrive ahead of the unit to secure billets (lodging), computers, and any other equipment or space the other 72 Soldiers will need when they touch down. This means that his schedule is rather erratic and instead of making routine phone calls home, he calls when he can. Last night, that meant 3 time. I had been asleep for about 3 hours. I have no idea what was said during those 20 minutes. It's possible that I agreed to any number of things...having 7 children...becoming Mormon...getting a pair of socks for my birthday. Who knows. It took almost 2 hours for me to fall back asleep. I had been dreaming of fall in Paris for about 3 hours when my phone rang again. It was Neal. "Oh! I woke you up again! Hehehehe...Sorry!" Sleep-deprivation is not funny, CPT Miller. I managed to pull myself awake enough to have a normal conversation. It helped that the sun was up and crashing through my bedroom windows. It also prevented me from going back to sleep when my 20 minutes was up. I would never discourage a phone call from Neal, but clearly I need to send him a world clock to mount on his wall.
  • I am discovering that irritation and conflicted feelings about being irritated is causing my skin to break out again. My physician thinks it's a yeast infection. On my face. And I must apply Monistat on it throughout the day. That, alone, is a great reason to take up Yoga and/or meditation. 
  • Bloggers all over the sphere are giving up or taking on something for Lent. While I always participate in Lent, I'm extra-inspired this year. Shana has started walking and cleaning her house more regularly, Fojoy is giving up shopping (but not before she bought her 40 days' worth of stuff. A girl after my own heart...), Kelly is giving up sugar in her coffee, and Hutch is giving up pasta and sweets. So, I am ready to give up something as fact...I'll give up 2 things. Sex and alcohol. Um..well, everything except red wine. Because red wine is served at mass and I'm also going to add mass back into my schedule, I certainly can't give that up. Sex is an easy one so I'm not sure that's considered sacrifice...however I do consider it a sacrifice when it lasts way longer than 40 days. And this turns Fridays into Red Wine Fridays. Even the blog is experiencing the sacrificial nature of Lent. 
  • I fell asleep watching Silk Stalkings on Netflix last night. After the opening credits, I was stunned that I got away with watching this show in middle school. And it made me regret giving up sex for Lent. Wow that's a lot of skin and lace in the first 30 seconds of a show. 
  • There has been a lot of death around me this week. Anna Banana's aunt passed away this week from a rare form of cancer that ripped through her body like a hurricane. When she was diagnosed last winter, she was given 6 months to live. I think she lasted 4 and the last couple of weeks were excrutiating, according to Mama Virgo. I will always remember AB's aunt with laughter on her face, a kind word on her tongue. I didn't spend much time with that side of the family and I was always surprised to find a birthday or Christmas card in the mail from her. Even though I was not around, she took great care to make sure I was not out of sight, out of mind. She is going to be greatly missed.
  • If you read Kiera @ Imperfect Daisies, then you know she went to her doctor's appointment yesterday, only to find that her baby had passed away in utero. She calmly blogged about it last night, although I think she is still in shock. If you have a moment today, please click over and give her some bloggy love. Don't worry about finding the right words, there really aren't any. Just let her know that you're thinking of her. Losing a child is unnatural and my heart breaks every. single. time. it happens to a mother. It also happened to another mother and sweet friend of mine this week. I am just so sorry, ladies. There is not a word in our dictionary that expresses my sadness and grief. 
  • When people pass away and mothers gain baby angels, I can't help but think of the adults that are now there to raise Shepherd like we never could and the children he will get to play with. It's silly and naive to think that babies grow to be adults in Heaven or that they will even recognize one another when they get up there. But no one that's my fantasy and it has evolved into a lovely coping mechanism.
  • Finally, I received the most educational comment I have ever gotten this week...from Hutch @ Be Awesome Instead. On the spelling of facetious, she said that spelling it has not been a problem for her since her 4th grade teacher pointed out that it is the only word in the English dictionary that lists the vowels in correct order...a,e,i.o.u. That is genius. 
I will leave you with that little piece of wisdom on this sunny, yet disaster-stricken Friday. Please keep the Japanese residents in your thoughts and prayers. It is only because they are so proactive in implementing building codes which account for possible earthquakes that more damage was not done, but it doesn't lessen the loss of life yesterday. And to the extremists, this is not God's punishment on don't even start.
one of Saddam's palaces...during Neal's first tour, 2005

Cheers, my loves. Be good to yourselves and to each other. 


  1. I feel so bad for the people in Japan.
    Praying for them, praying for Neal and praying for your friend who lost her baby. That's the saddest thing ever. :(

    ps, the monistat on the face? oy. :)

  2. The past 24 hours have just been incredibly sad and devastating for so many. There really are no words.

    So much so I won't even give you a hard time for giving the facetious credit to someone else :)

    I fully support red wine Fridays! I only gave up sweets and pasta this year, couldn't bare to do wine again!

  3. So sorry to hear about Anna's aunt. I actually saw her going into a funeral home here this week and was meaning to ask you about it, but hadn't remembered to do it yet. Keeping her, Mama Virgo & all of Anna's family in my prayers. I'll be praying for your friends who lost their babies too. *HUGS* m'dear!

    And, um, you watched Silk Stalkings in middle school? Really? Hummm, never knew that. Had I known, I would've invited you over to watch w/me & my mom. ;)

  4. So much sadness

    Yet most of us have to pick up the pieces and keep moving.

    I am happy Neal had a good birthday!

    that is all

  5. That's a whole lot of tragedy and when you throw the earthquake and tsunami into the mix, it's been a terribly sad week. :(

    I hadn't read Kiera's post yet, but I'm going to go leave her some love now.

  6. so many points to touch on in this so I'll keep it short and sweet. Thank you for the shout out and the information you've provided in this. Cheers to you on this Red Wine Friday my dear! oxoxo

  7. So, Ally, at the risk of being accused of splitting hairs... Sundays don't count in the 40 days, so you could have given up wine and still participated in Mass. Not that I am suggesting you should do it. Sex is plenty in my book. I'm not volunteering!

    You're go good at sharing grief and care so deeply for your friends. They (we) are lucky to have you. Now go take a nap so that you can talk to Neal every three hours all night. xoxo

  8. I couldn't quite believe the devastation in Japan when I turned on my TV this morning - it makes my complaints about the cold and snow seem so frivolous...
    I think it is perfectly acceptable to keep red wine, it is the blood of Christ after all.
    My heart goes out to you for your loss - it sounds similar to what my Mom went through. Boo Cancer
    And thanks to you and Hutch for that awesome spelling lesson - what a great way to remember.
    Happy Red Wine Friday!

  9. Thanks for the shout out for Aunt Betty. She had a wonderful send off today, under a Kentucky blue sky, surrounded by lots of love.

  10. Now I"m going to cry. This is a sad blog, but you know what? You hit the nail on the head...through all this...SAD...we're still SO BLESSED. Love and prayers to everyone that needs it. If I can't do anything else, I can pray hard.

    And facetious. Mama like.

  11. So sorry to hear of all these losses. Heartfelt thoughts to all who are coping with such difficult things.

  12. I was watching the Real Houswives (uh, well, yeah...fake real!) with my youngest the other nite and I learned a new term. Sounds like your Love Tank is full!

  13. I'm so sorry to hear about your bloggy friend Kiera. I will stop by and send my warmest wishes--poor thing :(

    There really has been a lot of sadness lately. The news reports from Japan are just so heart-wrenching and yet, I find myself glued to the TV when any coverage comes on.

    Best of luck on your Lent sacrifices. I have never seen an episode of Silk Stockings though I've heard. Sexy stuff, huh?


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