Sunday, July 29, 2007

Fall Festival

Alright, so I need your help. I'm beginning the brainstorming of this Fall Festival...

What carnival games did you like as a kid (or your kids like)? I'm trying to come up with ones for which I wouldn't have to build things such as a clown that you can throw bean bags through... think "laying around the house" or "Walmart." Here's my list so far:

face painting
painting mini pumpkins (ok, I admit... this is in itself the reason I'm doing this whole shindig...)
bucket bonanza
ring toss
duck pond
cake walk
moonwalk (the big inflatable bouncy thing... I can rent one from the post)
football throw

Any ideas??

Friday, July 27, 2007

Lions, Tigers, and Bears- goodbye!

It's over. It's been two months in waiting, postponed once, and now... finally... it is in the past.

Yesterday I took 37 Kids Church kids and adults to the Jacksonville Zoo. Because of a miscommunication, the bus was an hour late... but once we got there everyone had a great time. Though I have to say, I wasn't super impressed with the zoo. Of course, I don't think I have ever been super impressed by anything animal-related, so that's not saying a whole lot. I had four kids in my group, from 4 to about 8. I think Abigail, the 4-year-old, was the best part of the day! Her eyes got huge and she started jumping up and down every time she spotted an animal. "Look what I found! Look what I found!" she would yell, pulling on my arm. It was cute.

I'm planning a Fall Festival for October. I have decided I'm not much of a field trip person, what with permission slips and buses and such. But, a big party with painting miniature pumpkins, face painting, games, apple cider, donuts, and hot dogs? Now, that I can do!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

As American as Kimchi

If the heated controversy over illegal immigration has ever gotten to you, go over to Kimchi Mamas and read this humorous and touching story about a young girl helping her Korean mother become an American citizen... It's a good reminder of all the people who have followed the system and made the U.S. the wonderfully diverse place it is.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

a Day Off

Last weekend was long. Well, not so much for me... it was pretty much like every other day for me. Jon, on the other hand, was pulling triple duty. He was at work from 9am-8pm on Saturday (with a couple hours off in the afternoon), then pretty much the same on Sunday (leading three services and teaching one class). Suffice it to say he earned some comp time!

So, Tuesday we packed up two gallons of water, the camera, and sun block, and ventured down to St. Simon's Island in Brunswick. Here in Coastal Georgia, it's not like you can just drive to the coast and hit a beach. Instead, open water is protected by miles of marshland and small islands. Each island has its own flair and attraction.

On our way, we stopped by The World's Smallest Church... complete with the small church smell! It has six pews in it, enough to seat 12 people. It's open to visitors all day... on the sign-in sheet, we were the 17th visitor that day!

Our main point of interest at St. Simon's was Fort Frederica. This is really an amazing place. In the mid-18th century, it was a British protective fort against the Spaniards living just below in Florida. What is most amazing about it is that it was destroyed by a fire and has few remains. The historical society put street signs to mark where the roads probably were... a bit eerie to walk by the markings of each building, as though it's a cemetery of a city. At its prime, it housed nearly 1,000 soldiers, families, and businessmen.

Of course, we couldn't go to a coastal city and not have seafood! After checking out every restaurant in a several-block radius, we ended up at the second one we saw! And man, was it good! Fried seafood and homemade ice cream- can't get any better than that!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Curves, Cravings, and Clothes

As I wrote last time, I went to the doctor earlier this week to discuss how my scoliosis (three curves in my spine and uneven hip) could affect the pregnancy. The doctor literally apologized to me for making me drive over 2 hours round-trip for him to not be able to do anything. He looked at my xrays, looked at me, and said, "You'll probably have pain, but maybe not. If you do, take Tylenol. There really isn't anything else we can do." I just looked at him. Exercises? Shoes? Brace? (These were things my ob/gyn suggested) Nope. Probably a belly brace in the third trimester, but other than that, there's nothing anyone can do to prevent or help the pain. He was really nice and didn't make me feel dumb for being there or anything (unlike other doctors I have seen in the past), but it was still a disappointment! Ah well, at least I know...

Several people have asked me if I've craved anything. Yesterday I met several of the PWOC women at the park for lunch, and one of them even brought an extra pickle just in case! Though considerate, I enjoy dill pickles no more now than I did before. I have, however, eaten three whole watermelons (Jon doesn't like them) since I got pregnant. Craving? Eh, probably just that I love watermelon! (I literally chop it in half and grab a spoon!) My new thing is potato chips and dip. Again, I don't think it's a craving so much as it is that we NEVER have such things in the house, so it's quite a treat that I bought them!

Lastly, at 16 weeks, I am at that dreaded point where I am too big for my clothes, but too small for maternity. Thank goodness for pajama pants! :-)

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Happy Birthday, Chaplaincy!

This month happens to be the 232nd anniversary of the Chaplain corp. That means that, as a corp, it has been in existence since before the signing of the Declaration of Independence... isn't that cool?

I mean, seriously. Before you knew "Chaplain Fisher," what was the image of chaplains in your mind? Yep. Me too. Father Mulcahy from M*A*S*H*. (There have been quite a few times when I tell people Jon is an Army Chaplain, and their response is, "Oh, like that guy from MASH!")

In actuality, in its 232 years of existence, many Chaplains have gone way above and beyond the call of duty, winning Congressional Medals of Honor. And if you're not familiar with the heroic story of The Four Chaplains, I would recommend taking the three minutes to read it.

Anyway, to "celebrate," we went bowling yesterday with all the Chaplains & Assistants here at Ft. Stewart. It was "mandatory fun" for the soldiers, so the wives came along for moral support! :-)

Wow, it's been a long time since I've bowled! I think the last time was the summer I was a cabin leader at Pine Ridge, right after I graduated from high school! And... my scores showed it... I got a 78 my first game, and a 37 the second... yeah... lots o' gutters that round...

In other news, I have a doctor's appointment on Monday to check out how my curvy back will affect the pregnancy and what we should do about it... I'll let you know how it goes!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Supporting Our Troops

NPR had an interesting story this morning regarding public opinion of our troops. It's very brief and an interesting listen. They surveyed random people at an airport, asking them what "supporting the troops" means, even if they are not in favor of the war. The responses are varied, though no one says that they don't support them.

To be honest, I'm not really sure what my answer to that question would be. I mean, you could always go to websites like or if you don't personally know any troops, but want to mail them your appreciation in the form of letters or packages (this is actually a great thing to do, if you're looking!) There are also tons of organizations you could donate to that help military families, families of the fallen, troops who have gotten injured, those who are currently deployed, those who have returned... the list goes on and on...

But, short of that, the question still remains: What does it mean to "support the troops"?

I pose that question, because I'm a very literal person. I don't like vague statements that don't really mean anything, so I just wonder what everyone means by that. So what about you? Regardless of your feelings on the war, do you feel like you "support the troops"? What does that mean to you?

The Summer Blahs

Ugh! You thought the winter blahs were bad? I'm so sick of summer!

This past week or so, I have found myself longing (even more than normal) for crisp fall days. For caramel apples, bonfires, and sweaters.

I realized why.

It was as hot here in April as it is in Michigan in June. So, according to my internal body thermometer, it's about time for September. It's been warm long enough, summer should be wrapping itself up.

(today, it's 94, and according to, "feels like 104")

I opened a box yesterday, only to find my autumn decorations. *sigh*...

It didn't help any that last year when we were up north for the holidays, it was warm enough to wear a light jacket and keep the door open. At Thanksgiving AND Christmas. (of course, they were getting blizzards in April...)

It also doesn't help that I can't actually wear summer clothing. You see, down here they keep the air conditioning at ridiculously low temperatures... if I wear a short sleeved shirt (with JEANS, mind you), I have to bring a jacket because the buildings are too cold. By "buildings," I mean any structure other than my house. Church, stores, homes, everything (for example, the chapel is kept at 64; our house is at 78). It's almost unbearable. It's like an oven for the few seconds between my car and their door, but then I'm nice and comfy.

You know, as much as I loathe cold weather, one would think I would love summer.

To console myself, I've got Harry Connick, Jr.'s Christmas cd on right now...

Monday, July 09, 2007

Our Weekend...




Yes yes, after six long months of getting dizzy every time we walked into the kitchen or breakfast nook, we finally bit the bullet! It was a lot of work, but it was well worth it!

Thursday, July 05, 2007


As you may know, I'm taking Women in Society in school right now. Suffice it to say I don't exactly see eye to eye with either the author of my textbook or my professor. But hey, that's ok. It has evoked much passion in me... well, pretty much just frustration... (I have to ask, are gender roles a BAD thing? Yes, I can admit they exist... is that WRONG? Anyway, I digress...)

Just frustration, until tonight. Tonight, for the first time, I read something I passionately agreed with. I was reading the chapter on Gender-based Violence for a paper due this weekend, when I stumbled across a term I was not familiar with: Double Victimization. Let me back up for a second... when I read in the essay assignment that we needed to cover this term, I figured it had something to do with the double standard of women being considered either too prudish or too easy, and nothing in between, creating the sexual double standard. Whatever. I don't think that's necessarily accurate, but whatever.

Until I read what the term actually means: It is when a woman is victimized in a crime, then again by the criminal justice system. (Backing up again, if you don't know my story, now would be a good time to read it here.)

I was amazed how much passion this ignited! I could feel my heart beating hurriedly as my fingers strove to type as quickly as I was thinking so I could express myself in my paper (fortunately, our professor looks for informal, self-reflective essays...) Those jerks! Those mean, creepy old men who were working for the Ottawa County Sheriff's Department!! How in the world are THEY going to tell me that I didn't "respond the way a woman in [my] situation would respond"?? How do they think that their "thirty years in the business" trumps my personal and horrific experience? What gave them the right to lecture me about how I had wasted their time and they really should be arresting me for "falsely reporting a crime"?? How... in the name of all that is right in this world... did they purposefully convince me that the man who was found by another officer- who MATCHED MY DESCRIPTION to the 911 dispatcher- was NOT the man who did this, and an hour later MAKE ME FEEL GUILTY for "ruining that innocent man's morning"??? And to top it all off, why did they think it was in any way appropriate to question my sanity??? (Try to hear this in a condescending, patronizing, sing-songy voice: "No, Sara, we don't think you're lying... we just don't think that what you said really happened...")

We found out later that, because of a nearby college campus, this particular department gets falsely reported rapes and other sexual assaults often (though, this does make me wonder if they were really falsely reported, or if these condescending and chauvinistic men made these women believe that it was actually consensual...??)

After my dad wrote an inflammatory letter to the sheriff's department, we did get an official apology and a visit by a personal representative of the sheriff (being the week of Christmas, the Sheriff- and the main detective, who is a believer, mind you- were on vacation...) But I have to wonder if those men ever were reprimanded for what they did to me?

Forget for a moment what the aggressor did. We all know what he did was wrong, and that the emotions that experience evokes are completely valid. But what about the fact that it put a serious distrust of our police force in the depths of my heart? What about the fact that now, the image that comes to my mind when someone says the words "Sheriff's Department" are not men and women protecting the peace and lawfulness of our society, but rather two men who, truth be told, make me feel worse about myself than the man who did this?

Don't get me wrong. I really appreciate our police force and all they do, and I certainly do not believe they are all corrupt- or chauvinistic. Jon's Chaplain Assistant's civilian job is a cop, and honestly, Sgt. Franklin has probably done more good in reconciling his occupation with "good" in my mind than anything. I don't hate cops.

That said, it infuriates me that those men got away with that. Hopefully, they have since retired and will not cause anyone else the pain they caused me.

Happy Day After Independence Day!

Ah yes, it's been a while. In the past week, I have begun three posts, and scratched them all. Why? Nothing interesting to say.

We had a lovely 4th yesterday. We slept in late, made smoothies for breakfast, and pretty much bummed around all day. We had a fantastic steak dinner, with mashed potatoes, sauteed onions, green peppers, & mushrooms, and garlic bread. I pointed out to Jon the steak juice mingling with butter grease pooling on our plates... that's a sight you don't often see in our house!! Last night was a far cry from steamed veggies and brown rice! :)

After dinner we washed the vehicles. Yes. I said WE. For the third time in my life. Once when Jon was gone, Josh got me to help him... you know... because he was washing MY truck... I helped Jon once before too. It's not exactly my favorite thing in the world, but it helps get the job done quicker, and hey, Jon folds all the clothes and sweeps most of the time, so I figure I should pitch in!

After that... and a walk to assuage our guilt... I made... a chocolate chip cookie pizza!!! My my... for any of you who have spent much time in Chicago, you are probably familiar with Lou Malnati's signature dessert: a huge chocolate chip cookie baked in a cast iron skillet, topped with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, and chocolate syrup. I passed on the whipped cream, but it was still pretty good! I have fantastic memories from Moody of going out for dessert with a couple friends, ordering the delectable chocolate mountain, all grabbing a spoon and digging in! I don't think Jon was nearly as excited as I was, but hey, itsallgood.

I have some other thoughts brewing... but for now, I leave you with lovely thoughts of food...