5 Important Lessons Learned This Weekend

Being a military wife also means that, from time to time, I must tackle chores solo. Duty calls and takes Jason away; it’s just a part of how our lives run. Unfortunately, I’ll be soloing it for a while, so procrastinating on the chores (especially yard work) won’t really work. Stuff has to get done before winter.

On the agenda this past weekend was taming our unruly butterfly bushes … that had turned into tree height this summer. They had grown from being a focal point of our backyard to … well, mammoth bushes that weren’t so pretty.

So … picture if you will, me, a hotter-than-expected sunny afternoon, extra-tall butterfly bushes, 15 yard tools (just in case), a spool of twine, and two four-legged “helpers” who love to chew branches.

Quite comical – and I certainly took away 5 important lessons from the weekend’s circus (er … chore list).  Continue reading

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Yellow Ribbon Support – Yahtzee Style

A few weekends ago I hung my yellow ribbon to show our support for troops overseas (and one particular soldier I am quite fond of). Since then, other yellow ribbons have appeared along our street, Logans Run.

The first to appear was next door, where Todd, Kara and the kids hung their ribbon as a family (and said a prayer for Mr. Jason’s safe return, too).

Yellow Ribbon.Swopes

The next day, a yellow ribbon was hung by neighbors across the street, Ed & Molly …

Yellow Ribbon.EdMolly

… and another one appeared at Sam & Kathleen’s home.

Yellow Ribbon.SamKathleen

By the end of the first week, a fifth yellow ribbon (Yahtzee!) made its way to Logans Run at Miss Jeans’s house!

Yellow Ribbon.MissJean

I know it feels like the troops have been overseas forever – and they have! Some of our friends have seen 2, 3, and even 4 tours overseas in the last 9 years.

After the tragedies of 9/11/01, I witnessed an outpouring of pride for the great U.S.A., and in the first years of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, regardless of personal views over the war, citizens visibly showed their support for our troops and their families. They purchased yellow ribbon magnets to stick to their vehicles and tied yellow string around their radio antennas. Many, whether they knew someone deployed or not, hung yellow ribbons on their trees, homes or mailboxes to simply show their support.

Walmart and Lowes gave away red, white, and blue ‘Pride in the USA’ bumper stickers, and all across the country, many people flew their American flags. I saw “Old Glory” waving in neighborhoods, at business centers and even on construction jobsites – where a crane was positioned to fly a HUGE flag along Rt. 283 in Lancaster County.

Fast-forward to 2010, and the only place I found to purchase a yellow ribbon was on an Army post. They are no longer in stock at my local Walmart or the craft stores. And although I still see American flags hung with pride in my own neighborhood (there are many ex-military where we live), I rarely see the amount of flags that would cause me to tear up like earlier in this decade.

(Yes, this military wife is a total sap and have been that way for a long time. In fact, the first time I cried during the American anthem was at a Harrisburg Senators baseball game (where  worked job #2 for a summer) after my brother joined the Army in May 1997.)

And speaking from experience, there is nothing more touching to a soldier and his/her family than receiving unexpected support. The act of our neighbors hanging a $2 ribbon has affected me beyond what words can express. So I simply say … Thank you Logans Run for showing your support for Jason and the rest of the troops overseas!

And if you have a photo of a yellow ribbon hanging at your home, please share it with me. I’d love to post it on this blog … for all to see!