Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Montana Here We Come...eventually

We found out today that we will be stationed in Malmstrom AFB located in Great Falls, Montana. Not our first (or second, or third or fourth) choice, but we are excited about it. Great mountain bike trails for Jared, lots of awesome horse stuff for Emma, and from what I can see, lots of creative and crafty opportunities for the mama.

Now that we know what and where, all we need is the when. That I am ok with not knowing for a while, because I know it won't be sooner than May.

Until we head out of town, we are going to try to get plenty of time in with family and friends, as well as try to do some of the things we wanted to do while in Iowa but haven't yet.

We are excited for the next chapter to start...eventually.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Getting Closer

So much going on, so little time for blogging. I should probably be doing homework right now, but I have decided to actually write a bit instead.

We found out what Jared's job will be when he is back in the Air Force. Munition and Missiles Maintenance Officer (21M). Not his first choice, but it was his second. No one (by no one, I mean the cadre) is really sure why he didn't get his first choice considering his past experience and the fact that he is in the top of his ROTC class and all, but such is the way with the Air Force. They put you where they need you.

That being said, Jared, Emma, and I are working on our base preference list. It isn't due until the 24th of October, but we really want to get it turned in so we can stop stressing over it.

Here is our list as of yesterday.

Vandenberg AFB, California. Located on the coast, like literally on the coast. The base has private beaches :)
Spangdahlem ABS, Germany. We have some friends who will be over their soon, and we think it might be fun to try living over seas.

The rest are all bases that we wouldn't mind going to, but no one is calling out to us more than the others.

Malmstrom AFB, Montana
Hill AFB, Utah
F E Warren AFB, Wyoming

The last slot is sort of a toss up. The original list we had to choose from included 3 bases that are not on the list we are currently working off of. The list we are currently working from tells us how many 21M positions each base has. So we have decided to put one of those 3 bases in the 6th slot just in case.

Davis-Monthan (DM) happens to be one of those bases. DM is where we want to retire too, so we are a bit concerned that it isn't on the list. We have plans however, so it isn't that bit of a deal at the moment.

Anyway, if you know anything about any of the locations that we have listed, please feel free to share!

We hope to know where we will be stationed some time before Christmas, but we don't plan to hold our breath.

Thanks and have a great day!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Emma's 5 1/2 Birthday Bash

So, we celebrated Emma's half birthday today. Her actual birthday is the 21st of December, and who really wants to go to a b-day party 4 days before Christmas?

Don't get me wrong, we always celebrate her actually birthday with lots of little gifts. For the last 2 years (and until we aren't cool enough for her anymore) we go to a movie and the toy store on her actual birthday. We love the tradition. I just added to it this year by making her a blanket in the theme of the movie for that year.

Anyway, we like to celebrate her 1/2 birthday as well. This is the first year we have had a party where we actually invited people over. No, wait, I take that back. When Emma was 1 1/2 we had a party in Tucson. Wow, that was a long time ago!

Anyway, I realized this is the first time in a very long time that we have actually hosted a party (probably since her last 1/2 b-day party).

There is a lot of work involved!

I think we did ok though. Emma helped me clean the house yesterday (I only had to threaten to cancel the party twice) and get the goody bags ready.
Melting down crayons to make "new" ones.

Pan of crayons ready for the oven.

I did a really bad job of taking pictures of all the steps of the crayon making. Basically we took the wrappers off, broke them into little bits and sorted by color, then layered them in a bread pan about 2 crayons deep. I put them in the oven at 350 degrees F and kept an eye on them till I felt they where melted enough. Different crayons brands have different melting points, so we had some chunks of crayons, but for the most part we liked how they turned out. 

Once the crayons where mostly firm, I cut them into strips, then in half and threw them in the freezer for about 30 minutes. 

We like them :) We had warm colors and cool colors, each goody bag got one of each. 

The crayons we did last night. 

This morning we make rainbow cake and cupcakes. So totally awesome! We got the idea and instructions from Craft Knife. Such an awesome blog full of wonderful ideas. And her kids are pretty darn cute too :)

Here are a few of the pics I took while making the cupcakes. Again, I did a poor job of getting pictures of each step. 
Cracking eggs, an absolute favorite for Emma


First time using the mixer. She did great (only splattered a bit).

Dividing the batter into separate bowls (notice the apron :) )

Adding food coloring. 

Stirring some more.
And this is where I forgot to take more pictures. We had a bowl of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and pinky purple. Use individual spoons for each color, we dropped a dollop of cake mix into each of the cupcake thingies. We started with purple and worked out way up the rainbow. We only have mini cupcake pans, so by the time we got done with orange we ran out of room. We decided to go with red frosting :)

Emma got purple in each cupcake holder and decided this part was boring so I finished up. 

Once they where out of the oven and cool enough, she offered to test them for me. 

Yup, looks like a rainbow (minus the red). 

Here is a little cake we made with some of the left over batter.

Emma helped frost a few, then kinda got board with that as well. 

I finished them up then wrapped them till party time (to keep wandering fingers-both child and adult) from stealing too many. 

Then it was party time!

Well, after a quick nap.

Now it was party time :)

It was a really great day spent with some great friends.

Thank you everyone!


Monday, May 16, 2011

1 year and counting

We have one year left in Iowa. Next May, Jared graduates and then we will be off into the world again, at the whim of the Air Force.

We can't wait.

In preparation for the move, we had a Realtor come by and give us the low down on what needs to be done.

About what we expected, so that was good.

We started with a fun project. Jared would argue with the fun part, but I really think it makes our yard look better already. I, of course, forgot to take pictures of the before, although...

I did take these a few days ago to try to get pictures of the vinyl record bird bath.

Anyway, the above pictures show what our front garden looked like this morning. We originally started with one little circle of flowers (that actually started as a fire pit in 2009), then expanded that the following year (2010) to this. I wanted to use sticks as the edging to give it a more natural look, but it turned out to be a big pain for mowing and such.

I still think it looks cool, but potential buyers might disagree. I will save that for when I am out in the country.

Wait, who am I kidding, when I live in the country, I want a meadow instead of a lawn.

Anyway, this is what our new front garden looked like immediately after completion.
From the front step

Left side of the garden

Right side (I know, the garbage can just adds to the charm)

Whole garden from the right side

Whole garden from the left side. 

I am super happy about with they way it turned out :)

The best part about our garden is that of all the plants currently residing there, we have only purchased, I think, 2. Everything else came from my mother-in-law, or my neighbors. Can't beat free.

In fact, we might have to make a trip to Gramma's soon just so we can raid her garden to fill out ours :)