color: SOME SOLDIER'S MOM: October 2009

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy All Hollows Eve


I wanna be like Dad...




video

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Sunday, October 25, 2009

Valour-IT Fundraiser



PROJECT VALOUR-IT.

Please donate to this worthwhile cause of providing laptop computers to wounded military...

Project Valour-IT helps provide voice-controlled/adaptive laptop computers and other technology to support Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines recovering from hand wounds and other severe injuries. Items supplied include:

Voice-controlled Laptops - Operated by speaking into a microphone or using other adaptive technologies, they allow the wounded to maintain connections with the rest of the world during recovery.

Wii Video Game Systems - Whole-body game systems increase motivation and speed recovery when used under the guidance of physical therapists in therapy sessions (donated only to medical facilities).

Personal GPS - Handheld GPS devices build self-confidence and independence by compensating for short-term memory loss and organizational challenges related to severe TBI and severe PTSD.

Please give what you can... even $5 goes a long way to get us to our goals.

Military bloggers and friends have a friendly inter-service competition to raise money for this noble cause each year) but if you want to contribute for some other service, find your preferred service:

Team Leaders:
Air Force - MudvilleGazette (http://www.mudvillegazette.com/)
Army - Blackfive (http://www.blackfive.net/ )
Marines - Villainous Company (http://www.villainouscompany.com/vcblog)

(but if you want to be part of the winning team, give NAVY!!)

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40 AND FABULOUS !!!!!


4 games to go for #27!!!


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Friday, October 23, 2009

I Met This Man...


Many years ago, I met this man.

I knew that this man was special the minute we met and I knew I loved him from almost the first. The love I have for this man -- and the love he showers on me -- instantly healed every wound and harm ever done to my heart. Now when I search my heart I can not find an instant that I did not love him. I believe I loved him before we even met and I know for certain there will never be a moment that I don't love him completely and without reservation. As far as my heart can feel forward and back, I love this man.

The very presence of this man makes the world a better place. His service to his country for more than two decades is a source of pride not just to himself, but to his entire family. He makes those around him -- especially me -- better people. His solid support and encouragement have helped me and others achieve things never imagined. I have tried to do the same for him and I hope I have succeeded more times than I have failed. He is far more than any woman could ask of a husband. He truly is my rock... my partner... my friend. My best friend.

He raised our children with a firm but gentle discipline which was far outweighed by the love, affection and encouragement he showered on them. To this day, when he hears a son's or daughter's voice he lights up like a Christmas tree and there is a spring in his step that was not there minutes before. He is still quick to praise and offer encouragement and guidance even though they have established their career paths. As a grandfather, there is none better... the laughter and squeals of grandbabies brings out his own laughter and playfulness.

He was an attentive son who loved his parents without reserve. He tended to them in their dotage and buried them with the respect and tenderness of a man confident in the love they shared.

He is a much respected and loved brother. Happy in the memories of the three brothers' youth together and resolute in their mutual affection as they age.

I never hesitate to tell those who wish to know that the best part of my day is waking next to this man and it is only equaled by the last "I love you" shared with him at night. I truly was incomplete until I met this man.

Birthdays are the days we get to tell those whom we love that we are happy they are in our world. So, DH, this is to let you know how happy I am that you are in my world.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MY DEAREST HUSBAND.
WISHING YOU MANY, MANY HAPPY RETURNS!!

All my love -- always.

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay

Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay

What is it?

Soldiers, veterans and survivors of those whose service was involuntarily extended under Stop Loss between September 11, 2001 and September 30, 2008 can apply to receive $500 for every month, or portion of a month, they served under Stop Loss. The 2009 War Supplemental Appropriations Act established and largely funded the payment for all military services, but dictated that each service process and pay their own applicants. The Army estimates that 136,000 of the approximately 174,000 eligible servicemembers served in the Army.

What has the Army done?

The Army has created an application process for active-and-reserve component Soldiers, veterans, and survivors of Soldiers to process claims for Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay. By law, the Army can only accept claims between October 21, 2009 and October 21, 2010. Eligible candidates must submit their request within this timeframe, or the Army will not be able to process their request. The Army has set up an email address to field questions people have regarding the benefit.

How can people apply?

Candidates for Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay must submit a claim at Retroactive Stop Loss Web site . This Web site is the preferred method for submitting applications; however, other means for doing so, such as by mail or fax, will be available to those without access to computers. Additional communications will provide instructions for alternative forms of submission. During the application process, candidates will be asked to show documentation that indicates the time they served under Stop Loss. The necessary documentation, depending on their type of service, includes the following:

● Enlisted Soldiers need to present their DD Form 214 and DD Form 4 Enlistment/Reenlistment/Extension contract(s).

● Enlisted Soldiers who were in an indefinite status need a memorandum showing retirement/separation request was denied or an approved retirement/ separation was amended.

● Officers need a DD Form 214 and memorandum showing Retirement/ Separation request was denied or an approved retirement/separation was amended.

● National Guard Soldiers need to show DA Form 4187 for Stop Loss adjustment of ETS, separation documentation NGB Form 22, and/or NGB Form 1966.


What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

The Army will review, process and pay qualified candidates as they submit their applications at Retroactive Stop Loss Web site. Candidates who meet the criteria and show the required documentation will receive their retroactive payment in a one lump sum. The Army will not accept applications submitted after October 21, 2010.

Resources: Retroactive Stop Loss Web site

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Monday, October 19, 2009

Sears Heroes at Home Wish Registry!!!

Sears invites all active military members to register for the Sears Heroes at Home Wish Registry program. The Heroes at Home Wish Registry allows America to thank our military heroes and their families by donating to the program. All donations will be evenly distributed in the form of Sears gift cards amongst all military families and members accepted into the program. Registration will be open between 8:00AM CT - 6:00PM CT each day, so register and review program details at www.sears.com/wish today.


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Thursday, October 15, 2009

We Have Not Forgotten

Your brothers miss you... even as they have returned to Iraq.

We remember you. We tell your story. We still mourn. And we bear witness. And there are those that carry the name that will tell the story to a whole new generation.

Rest in Peace.

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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

My Thinking Exactly...

Conservative v. Liberal

  • If a conservative doesn’t like guns, he doesn't buy one.
  • If a liberal doesn't like guns, he feels that no one should have one.
  • If a conservative is a vegetarian, he doesn't eat meat.
  • If a liberal is, he wants to ban all meat products for everyone.
  • If a conservative sees a foreign threat, he thinks about how to defeat his enemy.
  • A liberal wonders how to surrender gracefully and still look good.
  • If a conservative is homosexual, he quietly leads his life.
  • If a liberal is homosexual, he loudly demands legislated respect .
  • If a black man or Hispanic are conservative, they see themselves as independently successful.
  • Their liberal counterparts see themselves as victims in need of government protection.
  • If a conservative is down-and-out, he thinks about how to better his situation.
  • A liberal wonders who is going to take care of him.
  • If a conservative doesn’t like a talk show host, he switches channels.
  • Liberals demand that those they don’t like be shut down.
  • If a conservative is a non-believer, he doesn’t go to church.
  • A liberal non-believer wants any mention of God or religion silenced.
  • If a conservative decides he needs health care, he goes about shopping for it, or may choose a job that provides it.
  • A liberal demands that the rest of us pay for his.

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Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Troops in A'stan Need Your Help NOW!!

UPDATE FROM TANKER BABE: all the basic necessities have now been covered! In less than 36 hours, the basics for 56 soldiers have been donated by great and caring Americans! HOOAH! However, the project is not done... we are still hoping to replace the rest of their other personal gear via the American Legion's efforts (see next paragraph & the original blog post.) Bless all who honor our military men & women!!

[from The Burn Pit: UPDATE: OK, link is now active for credit card donations. I just did mine and it went through. Make sure you only click the "donate" button once. Tomorrow I will have info up for those who wish to donate via check or send in items.]

As you all know, this past weekend, an American Combat Outpost was overrun in Afghanistan and 8 American soldiers were killed and many wounded. What many people do not know is that the soldiers who are still there (but pulled back to a Forward Operating Base) lost everything but the clothes on their backs.

This from a friend at the American Legion:

Everything the men of Bravo Troop 361 Cavalry had with them that they were not wearing was destroyed in the battle for Combat Outpost Keating. [snip] These men have lost friends, lost their outpost, and lost all their belongings. One who made it out wrote that “most people back home don't even know -- no one gives a shit”. Well, many of us do.
You can check at TankerBabe's website for a list of basic necessities for which she & others are trying to get commitments (extra clothing, towels & wash clothes, undershirts... things like that.)

If you can commit to providing certain things on her list or wish to make a cash donation towards these basic necessities, please email TankerBabe at tankerbabelc@gmail.com or Mark at the American Legion MOTHAX@LEGION.ORG

Additionally, the American Legion is setting up a relief fund that will be collecting money to replace the soldiers' iPods, DVDs, PCs and other such "comfort" items (which are NOT issued by the Army) that make serving in some of the most Heaven-forsaken country on Earth bearable.

And you can prove [you care] by giving whatever you can to try and buy these guys things like running shoes, and other essentials, as well as some comfort items like iPods and DvD players. The American Legion’s Operation Comfort Warrior has kicked in $1000 to start the Combat Outpost Keating Relief Fund... I intend to get these items out by the end of next week. ANY amount you can give, no matter how small will help us prove that we do care.]
The whole story (including details of the battle and the aftereffects) can be found at this post at the American Legion Blog "The Burn Pit" The Battle for COP Keating and How You Can Help

The American Legion will be posting the contact information for the Legion's COP Keating Relief Fund there shortly.

Please pass this information on to friends, families and colleagues. If you are a member of a club or church group that might wish to help, please be sure to involve them, too!!

And be sure to read Greyhawk's roundup of information before, during & after at Mudville Gazette.

Many Thanks!

-- Some Soldier's Mom

PS To the azzholes out there who are writing these incredulous blog posts about how the U.S. spends so much on defense yet we have to have private fund raising to give these soldiers this stuff:
You are f@#$%^ MORONS!! Your total IGNORANCE of all things military is showing! If you read Tanker Babe's info closely enough, you will see that she makes clear that the Army is replacing the basics -- one set each (usually... except ACUs). The call is to help provide for additional things & EXTRA sets of socks, boots, running shoes, EXTRA towels & soft blankets, etc. (which all soldiers everywhere also provide themselves!) The American Legion effort is addressing PERSONAL and COMFORT items like DVDs, iPods, maybe laptops...

So you should either PUT UP or STFU... 'cause you are the exact same group of people who would be whining and shuffling if the military gave that kind of stuff to the troops.

From a favorite Army friend:
My reply would be simple. Would you rather the Army buy Body Armor or Socks? The stuff's expensive. If you say both, you don't understand competing demands. Both cost money; to buy one, you have to forsake some quantity of the other. Every item the Army buys has a priority. Socks are a lower priority than other things. I'm sure the Army has a warehouse full of socks somewhere, so lets focus on logistics. It isn't like the supply officer can run to wal-mart. They are in Afghanistan. It isn't the asshole of the world, but you can smell it from there. Everything has to be brought in either by trucks on nearly non-existent roads or by aircraft. Sure, those C-17s look big, until you stock them with essentials like food, ammo, medical supplies, mail, repair parts, petroleum, oil, and lubricants for weapons, building supplies for defenses, and water--for 500 people, for a week or a month.

So now it's a logistics priority. Where do uniform items fall on the supply priorities? Well below the other things mentioned. Mail has an immeasurable effect on morale, so it almost ALWAYS gets priority, right behind bullets, chow, and bandages. Broken uniforms can be fixed with a (much smaller) sewing kit. Uniforms wear out a lot faster when they don't get washed often, even faster when they are hand-washed. When water has to be flown in, washing clothes isn't at the top of the list of things you use water for.

Instead of reasoning with you about supply chain metrics or the priorities of resupply, I'll just ask you to pony up five fucking dollars, the cost of a Latte and Biscotti, and buy a damn pair of socks for a deployed soldier. Then spend an extra five dollars (might have to forgo renting a couple movies this weekend) and mail them to someone whose highlight of the week might just be that single pair of fresh, clean socks he received in the mail. Take stock of your cushy -assed life and do something for someone else for a change. Stop bitching about how much the government spends on defense, and help a soldier out. Right now, it doesn't matter WHY there's a shortage, it only matters that there IS a shortage, and the fastest way to fill that gap is by the American People stepping up and taking action themselves. Nobody's asking YOU to pick up a rifle or put YOUR life at risk. They're just asking you for a pair of fucking socks.

Better yet, keep your money and your fucking stamps. I'm sure those same men would rather go barefoot until their feet bleed than accept a gift given begrudgingly. If you're pissed off about the need, fill the need, then petition congress for a redress of grievance -- like the way DoD can't supply adequate socks. It's a right those soldiers DON'T have, that they are fighting for you to keep.

-- No Nom

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Monday, October 05, 2009

The Trinity Site & the Very Large Array

Did a weekend trip to New Mexico where we met up with some family from Colorado... visited The Trinity Site -- only open two weekends a year... great opportunity to see a bit of history... and a trip to another place on my Life List, The Very Large Array. Fascinating. Interesting and wonderfully scenic. Altogether a wonderful weekend with the DH and a favorite sister and her DH... relaxed and intellectually stimulating... We were absolutely thrilled to learn that our tour guide through the VLA site and control center was an astronomer who was involved with the first proof that quasars actually existed and weren't just theoretical. Too cool. His knowledge and enthusiasm was contagious and uplifting. HIGHLY recommend both sites (although Trinity is not open again until April.)



























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