Friday, September 27

It's my 26th Friday alone.

And with that I have no energy to be creative. So I stole from the Daybook Blog (hello, Mormon fashion bloggers - I love you!) this little quip of filler. You're welcome.

Making: many memories of "deployment survival" with my fellow ladies. This is what I've been most excited about with the entire Navy lifestyle. The camaraderie of those "left behind." I've got this homefire burning at a decent pace. But I never imagined I'd be on call for baby labor!

Cooking: decently healthy meals that are occasionally deflected with the necessary In 'N Out for sanity's reasons.

Drinking: Old Moon Old Vine Zin (it's okay)

Reading: Eights on the Move! Her hubby just selected OSC for SWO-hood! Congrats!

Looking: forward to an eventual Homecoming, but not too soon. Life doesn't work that way.

Playing: with Mommy McD in a handful of days. Can you imagine it's been 3 years?!?!? We're going to DIE!

Wasting: the evening hours on avoiding my laundry.

Sewing: station just got set-up since moving in.

Wishing: that I could put a hug into email format for the boy on the boat.

Enjoying: Old Moon Old Vine Zin ;)

Waiting: for more information on Homecoming.

Liking: how sales have picked up at work and I'm busy from 8-5pm.

Wondering: if I'll ever keep a spotless home.

Loving: the few Bulldogs on Instagram that leave me with a blushing love for our next family member. Hello new furry, four-legged love!

Hoping: peace since the aircraft news of Sunday morning.

Marveling: at my strength at deployment. I'm hearing I'm pretty solid.

Needing: a personal assistant to help with laundry, cleaning, car care, and dinners.

Smelling: Old Moon Old Vine Zin ;)

Wearing: a shirt of Mr. Wookie's.

Following: in the footsteps of many military families before: experiencing deployment.

Noticing: my knack as a hermit is stronger than ever. And thankfully I'm able to convince visitors over to my new house to entertain me.

Knowing: Mr. Wookie will be home when life allows it.

Thinking: about all the tacky/cheezy signs at Homecoming.

Feeling: that tacky/cheezy isn't my style at all. What about, "Hey, didn't you just leave?"

Bookmarking: more deployment projects despite it being many moons since he left

Opening: a tab at the local wine store. #just kidding #Iwish 

Feeling: hopeful.

Thursday, September 26

If I could put a song on repeat.

I'm in love with this song. If I could lay in bed, after a glass of wine, and have it never stop...I would. I repeated the words in my head at my desk all day deep in my work.

It resonates in me.

I just want to drive to the hangar, wait the unbelievable amount of time for the planes to arrive, welcome Mr. Wookie home from a fly-in, and feel the biggest hug in my life.

But instead, the Donut of Misery lays in a perpetual state of "We don't know."

So I listen to this song as it propels me through.

I accidentally cuddled with my partner-in-deployment-crime last weekend. It was an honest mistake. I rolled over in the middle of the night. I felt a sharp elbow into my face. I thought nothing of it. I brushed the elbow aside and continued my sleep next to the warm body enveloped by my bed. I recalled the last night Mr. Wookie had in the old place; the night before he deployed. I barely slept, yet I slept so deep. The last time I'd be comfortable next to his billowing body, I sunk into his scent next to me. Yet I was jarred awake last weekend when I realized the body next to me is fully feminine and missing the same in life (her boyfriend is Mr. Wookie's bunk-mate on the USS Ship Happens).

So tonight I finish the wine bottle split with the same friend. I put the leftovers away for lunch another day. And I keep hitting repeat of this song. Eventually I'll be able to say, "Just hold on, we're going home."

Tuesday, September 24

Deployment Anchor

Saturday and Sunday, while they were littered with good times of hiking, sun soaking, college football, and dancing, the happiness was ended when the reminder that service comes first.

Sunday morning brought the news that no one wants to hear: military aircraft + crash.

I had two other ladies staying over at my place that morning since my new digs was the closest home from our evening out. I received the phone call first. I passed the word. And the 3 of us did what was natural. We hunkered into my bed and shared a box of Kleenex. We hugged. We wondered. We imagined. We couldn't imagine.

We panged at the months that have passed to this deployment. When the "light at the end of the tunnel" was move back, then up, then further back, and more, I was the anchor of reason in the weeks past for my fellow Junior Officer attachees to 'pull up yer britches!'

But this....this news just broke the camel's back. The aviation lifestyle is one that nerves the soul. Deployment or not, occurrences happen. It still doesn't make it any easier to stomach.

We ran out of Kleenex that morning.

I sent a lengthy email that morning. I knew he wouldn't get it in a timely manner, but I still sent him. Hi handsome, it's Sunday night for record. For when he had the time to sit down at the shared computers, he'd know I knew and that I wanted to send him as much electronic love as possible. We will probably never discuss the gut-stomping sadness. And I'm okay with that.

So on my commute last night I felt the need to check in with my fellow Junior Officer attachees one more time (the wives and girfriends, near and far). One after one, I called, "Hey, how are you doing? Everything okay?" 

Mrs. Wookie: Anchorwoman. I'm Wookie Burgundy?

I couldn't tell you EVER that I'd give two shits about anyone other than myself. I'm a rock star that doesn't need to be plagued by people's issues. But this deployment has made me realize that I've got waaay more life skill to offer than I ever expected. The Homecoming date has always shifted. It's gone back and forth. When it would shift further out, I was the beacon of rationality. "Ladies, this is a good thing. You don't have to shave your legs yet." or "Ladies, think about that tax-free income!" Not that I'm trying to diffuse the situation of having a loved one deployed, but I'm a reminder that life doesn't revolve around the service member. You are your OWN life. You can handle a deployment and the changes in schedule. Yes, I also send out email reminders of the wine sales that occur at the local grocery stores. Yes, I know I'm awesome.

I've offered up my guest room to whomever. I will delivery wine to the moms that can't get outta the house. I'll prep the freezer meals with my just-up-the-road mom who's preparing for Baby #2 while Husband is on the USS Ship Happens. I'll give you hugs and let you use up all my Kleenex. And I'll let you have a tampon (seriously, "Can I borrow a tampon?" is not an effective sentence. Are you really going to return it?).

Plus, my efforts help me from not cleaning my house. :) That skill is just awesome.

Thursday, September 19

The amazing transformation in one year.

I picked up the phone, still at my desk, unsure who was on the other line. It was an (805) number. It could have been anyone really. It could have been a telemarketer. It could have been a fellow deployed family calling from an odd number. It could have been Manson.

So I answered.

"Hi Ashley, it's Ben. I'm calling from the ______ Therapy Center with our 1-year follow up. Do you have a moment?"

Has it really been a year?, rushed through my mind.

"Yeah, sure. I'm at work, so you'll just hear some typing."

It was nearing 4:30, and this typically is when we're rounding out our day. I'm sending tracking information to my customers for their recent purchases, I'm hustling quotes for projects of my West Coast customers still in the office. And we're rocking out as a division to the local radios since incoming calls and leads are usually null.

But I was taken back to the day when I nervously sat outside the office unsure of what therapy would be like when I was a crumbled remain of a human after the loss of my first fur baby. I sat there and chewed on my nails. I sat there and stared at the boring carpet. I sat there and didn't hear the first calling of my name. "Ashley, come one in." OH wait, me? 

From the moment I was in his eyesight, I felt the burning eyes of judgement and analysis. I felt the review of my every moment. Where did I sit on the couch? Did I cross my legs at the knee or ankle? Did I shift towards him showing interest in the conversation? I sat on the far right. I sat with one leg tucked under the other. I sat leaning back on my left side. And I stared at the piles of files on the cabinet. The desks were lackluster and I didn't feel like this one of those luxury therapy suites like you see in the movies. Instead I felt that the therapy office felt like my life: ho hum.

We went thorough the basic questions of my growing up. And then, So, tell me, why are you here?

But this phone call to check-in reminded me how far I've come. While it was absolutely the most painful adult life experience yet to happen, my answers to the life questions is a rebounded "I'm great." There's no longer a lingering pain in my heart. Despite the deployment and the inability to land any further information of than, "They're still deployed," I was happy to report that I couldn't be in a better place in life.

Therapy: Would I do it again?

Honestly? Probably not. As a highly rational female, my therapy discussions involved dissecting my emotions to the rate that the therapist would agree and offer the words of, "It just takes time." Thank you. I'm well aware of the steps of grieving. Time is what I want to pass in a heartbeat so I no longer hurt. I want to feel comfortable again in my own home. I want to not be forced to sleep in the guest room since the master bed felt inconsolably empty without Aviator and English Bulldog. But instead my instincts took over. I pushed myself into work. I found projects that required my undying attention. I hustled hard and pushed for records projects and sales. I aimed for complete exhaustion by end of work day so all that was left was dinner, a cocktail, and the need for an early bedtime. So by the time that the work-ups were completed and the shove-off date of the USS I'd Like Jade Earrings (Please), I couldn't have been stronger. I'm like a man. Please, just let me figure my own shit out, put my head down, and get through my pain. And I got there (finally).

My conversation ended with Ben. He was ecstatic of my progress. And I went back to work. The time clocked down on my punch-out from the office and my ride home was anything but uneventful. I was proud at my accomplishment. I was proud of my ability to surpass the undreamt reality that we faced. And I was incredibly proud that the hurdle that was one a mountain, was now a beautiful molehill of slobber and unconditional love that changed my life.

Tuesday, September 17

You want me to watch your child?

It seemed to hit me hard this weekend when I rode my beach cruiser hybrid home from dinner with a fellow deployed family that LIFE really does continue whether the husbands/boyfriends are home or not. It had me thinking - there are babies conceived juuuuust before deployment and the countdown begins immediately of, "Will you be home or will the fellow ladies act on your behalf?"

I was a great fill-in husband this weekend with a short trek to Costco for some dinner staples. Oh, and there may have been some new pillows, a blanket, and crafting table also throw on the 'aircraft carrier' cart.

And with the latest and greatest in recent deployment schedules, worldly happenings, and the recent 30%-off wine sale at Ralph' may include something so much more than me than I expected out of this deployment.

Sunday night I rode my bike to a fellow family's house that's now within "bike-a-bility" since the great, unexpected relocation of 2013. I'm now living a stone's throw from the beach (literally like 50 yards); which is within 1.5 miles from the other "Ashley" (<also my real name). So onto my bike I strolled. My backpack teamed of a bottle of wine, Mexican rice fixings, and the great company of another red wine fan (who's European with her pregnancy and does enjoy red wine with dinner). And the Jack Johnson streaming from Pandora was the soothing soundtrack to my peddling.

Then, after the 2-year-old daughter hit the hay, the topic turned to the impending due date of Baby #2 for this family. Who will win? The boat into dock or the baby into arms?? Who can be called on? Who lives closest? Who can handle the pets? Who can handle the 2-year-old?

You're ::looking:: at her.

It's me. So that night we made a legit plan. I'm the first call-to-action should Baby #2 announce that, "The thundercats are a-go" and it's past 5:45pm. I'm a 4-minute car ride away (when you count the walk to the car, garage door, and stop signs). I'm a rational person with basic life decisions. I'm a great companion and snuggle bunny to a little daughter that loooooves Nick Junior and snuggling on the coach with a blanket. I'll make snacks and meals for the little one and ensure she's in bed on time. I will hold down the fort while another wife handles the driving to the hospital and doula-like support until the actual doula arrives.

Holy shit...I'm scared and excited all it one.

The mom-to-be-for-the-second-time is excited for the arrival since she'll have a clue onceithappens whether she's on her own or not. The boat is...somewhere. And babies abide by their own plan. So the most that can be done is assume the location of a certain USS 'Staches Be Growin' and to focus on your impending plan: childbirth sans husband. And then prep the nurses/family to send the fastest Red Cross message of, "Baby girl born, _#, _oz, happy as can be (when considering the circumstances)."

So that night I began the realization that my phone will be turned up to ring the loudest possible.

Monday, September 16

Military Monday: Party Time (Yes, please!)

Is it really Monday again?!? I haven't even gotten over the awe that I assisted in draining a lot of wine bottles this week. It was the weekend of indulgence, but that's not because Homecoming is nearer. It's because my weekend was spent with ladies who also crank out those paychecks and needed bonding DINKdom-style by traveling the California coastline and enjoying the fermented grape juice that's to offer.

But let's get to Ashley's "Military Monday" this week, shall we??

And yes, that elephant of the Enlisted vs Officer was a big one. But it seems that the blogosphere is modernized and realizes that there are always fantastic women associated with each rank. Then there are the bitches. But who cares about them? :)

This week's theme: PARTY TIME!

And what does the aviation community do best?? P.a.r.t.y. Why? Because they gotta!!

What's been your favorite military-related party to throw or attend? I'm not talking fancy schmancy balls with gowns & updo's. I mean the low-key, Pinterest-abled parties! :)

While I do love a good Hawkeye Ball (it's the annual event that celebrates the community and passes along the great honor of Hawkeye Pilot of the Year and Hawkeye Window Licker [NFO] of the Year), it's the informal events that really take the cake since the true personalities are at their highest potential. My absolute favorite events are called "Hail and Bail" - it's where the newest check-ins are hazed and welcomed, while the outbound aviators leave their quips of wisdom and mockery for those left behind.

We're nearer and nearer to Mr. Wookie's Bail which makes me very nostalgic for our time in California.

The short answer is that these events ooze camaraderie.

The long answer is that events like these are how call signs are created. They can get crazy. And there's nothing I love better than people watching. :) Oh, and the college rule may or may not apply: Don't fall asleep with your shoes on. ;)

Have you thrown one for your significant other? Or attended one with an awesome theme for someone ranking up? Maybe a fun retirement party? Or a going away party for some great military friends?

To answer Ashley's questions, no, I've never thrown one of these legendary parties. I've only attended. And Rule #1 of Hail and Bails: NO PICTURES. So I can only pique your interest with the entertainment value that happens. They're rowdy and morale boosting. And it's a time when you can watch the spousal counterparts interact as a whole. And yes, I've seen quite a bit. I've seen "Flip Cup" by a new mom with her baby in the Ergo, I've seen Junior Officers get drug into the trampoline to play, "Break the egg," and I may or may not have hid behind a suburban with seasoned wives while we enjoyed cigars and made sure no children saw 'mommy' smoking.

While there's not a lot going on while our guys are away, other than wining and whining with shared dinners on the weekends; their (now eventual) return will bring a new wave of Bails since there are three aviators slated to check-out before it's Mr. Wookie's time. He's in the final 4. Eeeeeeeeek. And I can only assume the drastic length that JOPA (Junior Officer Protection Agency) will resurrect to "make up for lost time" since boarding that USS When You Coming Home? back in the Spring. And yes, I'm all in. :)

The military lifestyle is something different. And within each community (aviation, sub, surface, nerds nukes, etc.) is their own breakdown of tradition. The aviation community is a family of living large where "work hard, play hard" is a common weekend occurrence. There have been times where Mr. Wookie will take off in the very early morning for a day of deep-sea fishing and not return until well after dark. There are other times where there's an impromptu golf tournament between Officers, winner takes all the $$$. And then there's the good, ol' fashioned BBQs on the water where the Jimmy Buffett is on the Jambox, the coolers are stuffed with beer, and the shit is shot while taking in the California sun.

And I wouldn't trade this life for the world; despite the ulcers, annoyance, tears, and Bevmo receipt that comes with the territory. :)

Wednesday, September 11

In less than 30 days is my birthday. Gulp.

In a far, far away land, in an alternative universe lives a Mrs. Wookie of my dreams. There are magic potions to avoid any signs of aging, wet nurses, surrogates, and trust funds assist the necessary procreation for redheads, and I have an unlimited gift card to Bevmo.

But sadly, I don't live in that reality.

I'm developing minor lines winging from my eyes thanks to excessive smiling (oh, such a curse - the smiling!), I sense the metabolism slowing slightly with the creep-age to the brink of Metamucil, and I'm starting to panic that my Roth IRA doesn't have $100,000.00 in it like I imagined when I opened it back at the start of my 20's.

But sadly, life's goes on.

Birthdays are meant to be exciting; they're meant to be looked forward to; they're meant to bring loved ones together in celebration. And a little gift gifting ain't hurt no one.

So I've got some questions for you, dear readers. Please, help an about-to-turn-30 Mrs. Wookie out! Leave yo' comments!

Dear Parents,

I want a dutch oven for my birthday.



The Sheriff and I have discussed dutch ovens a bit. He has a 7-qt Le Creuset (purchased by the kids jointly thanks to a MEGA deal), but he's got a decent dinner guest count in Hometown, Oregon. I a boy that's deployed (until when?? Who knows). And there's no getting pregnant tomorrow - I don't own a turkey baster...nor the above-mentioned wet nurse, surrogate, or trust fund.

So here's my conundrum. What size do you I get? I struggled fitting my 3-lb pot roast (with potatoes and carrots) into a cute little casserole dish the other week. Will this fit in the 5qt? Do I aim large and get the 7-plus qt despite not having a Duggar-sized crew at my dinner table??

Aaaaaand, what about THE COLOR CHOICES!?!! I'm a Libra. Deciding what coffee creamer to use in the morning is a chore. Spending $100+ (I mean, with my parents spending $100+) is not the time to be flippant on color options.

Oh the turmoil of this almost-birthday girl. Never have First World Problems been so nail-biting.

And the question continues: Does size matter? What do you own?

Monday, September 9

Military Monday: Enlisted vs Officer

Thanks to the crippled Eights On The Move, she brings us a poignant open communication on the biggest elephant in the room when it comes to the military.

Enlisted vs. Officer

Dun dun dun. Let the cat fighting begin!! Will someone hold my weave?

What are your experiences with each side of the military and their spouses/significant others?
My (girlfriend-based) experience has only been personally on the Officer side of the line, and even then it's evolved over the 10 years that Mr. Wookie has been associated with the Navy (4 years at ROTC, 6 years Active Duty). At first, which I understand, there's a strict demarcation between Enlisted and Officer because there are ALWAYS people who cross that line, start relations, and then one of the careers suffers (typically the Officer's). So it's made known that there's ZERO fraternization. Apparently it's difficult to find attractive fellow Officers so instead let's risk our occupation for a little peenplay. Seriously??

However with that, at least from my viewpoint, that this "no excuse" can also come off as cold and disheartening when in social settings. It's like you don't know how to act around each other, so you just follow what's in the Command. It wasn't until we've been a couple years in this California station (and after a welcomed Change in Command to a Skipper that likes to blur the lines and consider everyone family), that there's been a strong support "between the lines." There are family outing for the entire squadron when non-deployed, we attended an "All Khaki" Dining Out ('khakis' are upper Enlisted and all Officers) right before deployment, and there've been a few "squadron family days" during deployment (however, there's just not a lot of young married guys in the squadron so they're very limited to Chief's families).

The "line" is best when fully supported by the Command that one is not better than the other. An yes, O-1 will always be the most awkward ever. Yup, they're an Officer - but they don't know anything yet in terms of 'big Navy' (no matter if they come from that academy, OSC, or ROTC). Even if yo' momma is a retired O-5 like Mr. Wookie. But if they play their cards right, respect their Chiefs, get hazed a little by JOPA, then they should settle in just fine. Thankfully Mr. Wookie avoided the O-1 awkward phase by being buried with flight school.

What are your opinions on the benefits and drawbacks? Or - is there really no big line drawn in the sand from your experiences?
As far as my personal experience is concerned, I've only ever had active involvement with the Enlisted personnel within his tour here in sunny California - and it's been okay (not terrible, not awesome). Mr. Wookie's squadron has A LOT of single, young Enlisted guys. Obviously with those Enlisted families that do exist, they're deep in raising children and running their households.

I do not raise any two-legged children, so there's just not a draw to develop any further friendships. It's natural to seek similar to one's own lifestyle. Also, typically those raising families are mid-30's. I'm fighting turning 30 with every fiber of my being and will stick with, "I'm 27" until the crow's feet get worse (or I get Juviderm). 30 just sounds awful, old, and borderline requiring Metamucil. Can I pass?

Does your significant other's command blend the two seamlessly? Do you participate in the events together? Wives clubs? Treated differently for various aspects of military life? 
And like above, with not a strong showing of Enlisted families, there's not a large parameter of Enlisted wives. Our Command does not have an FRG or any sort of faux-council committee (I say that because it makes me laugh the Commands that have FRG's that think they're like the Senate. "Excuse me, do you have the talking wand??" Seriously?? Who wants to be a part of the C**t Committee?? I'd pass faster than wind).

The (actual name) Officer's Support Club only includes Officer's spouses/girlfriends and currently is treated more like a social club than a 1950's don-the-aprons "Spouses group" where there's tiered seniority. Yes, there are meal delivery schedules when babies are born and there are flowers sent when Grandma Gustav passes away. But there's no longer the reign of bitchy Department Head wives who felt that "girlfriends" have a free pass to be shit on. And if I ever meet that stupid bitch who thought she was hot shit - I'll snatch kick her. Hard. When we finally PCS, I will be leaving a solid group of ladies that have come from clique-y and judgmental (thanks to bitchy ladies PCSing away) to awesome and entertaining. I will miss them. But my work here is done.

The support group is for SUPPORT. It's hard enough to deal with certain parts of the military life. Yes, there's a signing on for having babies by yourself (use birth control), MOVING YOUR HOME BY YOURSELF (live on a yacht), and looking for work every 3 years (inherit a trust fund). But it is nice to bitch about your day while someone else pours a solid glass of wine. That's just nice. And I'm an excellent pour-er.

Thanks Ashley for the great conversation this week! I look forward to the other responses!

Friday, September 6

Let's view one of the "NOPE!" homes. Shall we???

Okay, so you found out we got the news of YOU GOTTA MOVE, BITCHES!!

And you found out that somehow the stars aligned and I conquered this challenge.

But let's talk about the CRAP that was toured in between old dwelling and new granite, shall we?????

1.) There was a shit-hole on the beach with carpet that ran halfway through the room and then exposed concrete below. Oh and the shared wall with a dad and his two young daughters.


We're outta here.

2.) There was a gorgeous view overlooking the ocean that was just outside our comfort zone above BAH. Aaaaaaaand, there was a coyote literally in the backyard last week. Ummm....Mittens would be d.i.n.n.e.r.

3.) There was a beach house with an awkward bathroom situation for the top floor.

Awkward bath-only situation here. Ummmm?

4.) There was a drug house that had so much stuff leftover from the last tenants I'd fear for a drive-by.

5.) There was a GORGEOUS beach-front property that has ZERO cell phone reception, zero storage, and zero safety. I wasn't comfortable with the access to the home. I felt very vulnerable.

6.) And there was the place that turned out to be our new home. I toured it and LOVED it. And even did the 'no no' - I thought of furniture arrangements....before the application was even submitted. Tsk tsk tsk.

Oh, and did I mention that Mr. Wookie had pretty-much NIL internet connection on the boat for this whole situation. So not only can I successfully cry myself through this situation, I can choose a house that meets his approval after the lease is signed (thanks babe, for the POA). He finally got decent internet after it was all done - and needless, he was VERY happy with my work.

Oh, ya, because you were going to dump me when you got home? Pssssssh. I'll burn your shit, you know that!

So in about 4 weeks, we had new digs found, an application approved, and the movers scheduled to help with all the big stuff. And then I prepared for the million after-work trips moving every other box that was under 50-lbs. Mr. Wookie has to love my tenacity when it comes to saving money - yes, moving via his Jeep is an investment in gas, but I'm MUCH cheaper than professional movers. I only cost Red Bull, Cheerios, supportive emails, coffee, deoderant, bobby pins, vodka, and an Asian pedicure.

Thursday, September 5

The Yays & Nays of a Mid-Deployment Move

Yay for the "circling of the wagons" that is the extended military family. One email to 3 people (the CO's wife, XO's wife, and our "Knives Group" President) had me connected and CC'd to 2 new families in the area collecting their HHG that week. I promised wine and the swift stealing of boxes for their kind donation to my situation.

Nay to our property manager "trying to help find a new place." You said you'd help to make yourself feel better, but in don't give a shit and I'm just another liability to get off your chest. Suck it. I don't need your help. I got myself and my very-determined personality. If I can build a career around Uncle Sam, I can find a new home in a non-stabbing neighborhood.

Yay to Mr. Wookie being the most supportive ever with the situation. His humor in the situation definitely helped break the tension and ulcer forming that was going on in my stomach. "Babe, just think, you won't be bored during deployment." Seriously. True love.

Nay to the very limited stock of rentals that were potential homes. Our location in California is awesome - but with that, you do have to be sure to stay out of the "Mexican strawberry-picking ghetto" that is the Just-North-of-Malibu area. And with that, you typically do have to pay over BAH to ensure safety. Oh, and throw in, "I have a female cat." and you're met with NO PETS. Awesome. Just awesome.

Yay to the stars aligning with a 2-bed, 3 bath, w/ loft condo that's a football throw to the beach to help end our stay in sunny California. Mr. Wookie got what he wanted (beach), and I got my safety (hello gated community!). And a little granite in the kitchen neeeeever hurt anyone.

Nay to the CREAM CARPET that's in the condo. Dear owners, I drink red wine. I also spill wine before I begin to enjoy it. So there goes the new rule: No red wine indoors. Boo.

Yay to the 5-lbs that was lost over the 3 weeks of home searching as I lost any appetite because of the stress. I may or may not have bragged some more to Mr. Wookie about my looks.

Nay to the lack of concentration at my desk while at work. Who knew the brain needed nutrients?

Yay to my boss being completely understanding in my frazzled state of mind. Seriously. Awesome.

Nay to the panic that poor Mittens suffered in the "What's going on in my home?" She's barely a year old and already has a move under her belt collar? She's starting to shape into a solid Navy brat.

Yay to the pain and torment that is moving without muscle being over. Yay to the superb professional movers that were hired for the heavy stuff that I couldn't lift alone (appliances, big ass furniture, etc.). Yay to Mr. Wookie meeting me "halfway" in the moving process - he wanted to sponsor movers for the entire process while I wanted to pay other Junior Officers from a sister squadron to help. So in the end, we hired pros for the big shit and I used Mr. Wookie's Jeep for a 2-day push of the remaining boxes of stuff.

Tuesday, September 3

The actual email title: "Murphy's Law hits us."

The below is the exact cut-and-pasted email that was sent to Mr. Wookie on the boat. I had been so careful to not overwhelm him with anything slightly mopey on land since he's responsible for a very expensive asset aboard ship. So you can imagine the quick deterioration that happened while I was at work trying to remain calm. I played coy at the end of July, but I was a ulcer-forming wreck.

"Hi babe,

I just wanted to let you know that I just got a call from Scott [property manager]...

The owners are wanting to sell the house and we have a few options with our lease and such [we got a little over 30 days notice - umm, thanks for the advanced warning??]. The owners are still working out the details with the real estate agent, and I gave my phone number as contact for the property, but they're not sure yet on how to proceed with us and our lease that's set to expire in August [so much for that POA we got before he left].

There are all the options that could happen to us...

Option #1: Our lease isn't renewed by the seller's request. We're out on lease ending.

Option #2: Our lease is allowed to go month-to-month while the house is on the market. We get 30-days notice to be out once the property is in escrow.

Option #3: Our lease is allowed to go month-to-month. The seller's price the house too high, they have zero buying interest, and we stay put until we PCS [in like 6 months].

Option #4: ?????????????????????????? [yes, multiple question marks were required]

Obviously yes, I'm freaking out...and I did tell Scott that you're deployed. So maybe that'll have an effect on the owners and they'll feel sorry for us, but I honestly doubt it.

a.) It took months to find where we're at now. I don't want to be stuck living in someplace terrible while we're here in case we don't leave right away.

b.) Part of me wants to move out now just so the owners don't make income from our rent [fuckers!]. Although I'll continue to do the yardwork and such so we get the full deposit back.

c.) Do we consider apartments and 1-bedroom options since we're only here for so much longer and just storage stuff?

This is obviously not the email I wanted to send today. I'm sorry babe. If it's not one thing, it's another. I did call my dad because I was caught off guard with the phone call, and he said that he and my mom would be willing to come down and help with a move if it's needed while you're still gone. So I'm not completely alone. And there's obviously Nancy [NFO girlfriend], Gwen [pilot wife], and anyone else that's free to help.

And I'm curious, is there any Navy assistance with us being forced out of our home potentially in paying for move assistance? I know [callsign:] "Little Buddy" had help, but is it the same?

[Nope. Our friend, the pilot, was renting a home that went into foreclosure - completely different from our circumstances of our owners being asshats and not renewing our lease. I had everyone researching for me. The only way we would have assistance would be to move on base.

Nope. Not gonna happen for a couple reasons - like government paperwork AND we're not "on base" people. I'd rather cut off a toe than live in the fishbowl atmosphere of base living.]

Thanks babe - I love you [sorry for the mush]. You know that. And Parker [new check-in] left today and is due to you end of this week-ish. He'll have a manila envelope for you. Let me know when you have it. Your debit card is in there along with a birthday present.

Love, me (and my freak outs) :)"

So yeah...that happened. We've recovered, moved, restocked the bar supply, and as-of-last-night hung pictures on the wall. And Mittens is getting used to 'indoor' life since our new neighborhood is non-outdoor cat only.

Mr. Wookie's family: If you don't know that this happened, don't act surprise. You know your son. :) Email me for the dirty details for our new address. Welcome gifts in person are accepted!