Relaxing Day Off

The Brass Quintet had the day off today, so that was nice.  But I still had to get up to get Robert’s lunch packed and make breakfast and then Ryan and I walked him to school.  Then it was home to spend time on my computer – e-mail, facebook, message boards, etc.  I got laundry started.  I cleaned the kitchen sink.  Then I played on the computer some more.  And I stitched for a while.  When Ryan got home from the rifle range, we put a few more pictures up.  Then we went and got Robert from school – a little early and he wasn’t too happy about that.  He likes being the last one at Kids World.  But his pumpkin wasn’t going to carve itself.  Ryan did most of the work, but I cleaned the yuck out from inside the pumpkin.  I saved the seeds.  The Ryan did the sharp knife part and Robert supervised.  I’ll get some pics up in the next day or so.  It was kind of fun.  While Ryan was carving, I made dinner.  While we were eating dinner I did the pumpkin seeds in the oven.  They turned out ok, but I think I had them in the oven a little too long.  As we were cleaning up after dinner, Ryan remembered he was supposed to be at the Legion to help set up for the Halloween party.  So he headed out and Robert and I finished cleaning up.  Then we read his books from school and got ready for bed.  After he was tucked into bed, I stitched for a while.  When Ryan got home, we watched a bit of Tivo.  Now I’m heading to bed.

Today’s high:  59
Current:  48

Awards Assembly, class, and Parent-Teacher Conferences

This morning after we walked Robert to school, we went and got the mail from yesterday (oops!) and then went back to the school for the Awards Ceremony for the 1st Quarter. Robert received an award for perfect attendance!!! We’re so proud of him! Then it was off to work (yes, I had secured permission to be late). What was left of the morning was spent weeding through my e-mail, making a few phone calls, and getting calendars updated. Then it was lunchtime and I ate and stitched. After lunch we had a Suicide Prevention class at the chapel, given by a Chaplain. After the class was done, it was back to the Ops office to make a few more phone calls and answer a few more e-mails. I had like 6 job requests to take care of today (some from while we were gone TDY and then some that just came in today). I headed home and got changed and Ryan got home from class early and we headed to the school for Parent-Teacher Conferences. Mrs. C is an awesome teacher, and she had lots of great stuff to say about Robert. We got his first report card, even though Kindergartners don’t get anything other than a conference for 1st quarter. But he (and lots of his classmates) are already ahead of Arizona standards for the whole year!!! He’s a member of the "I can count to 100" and "I know my address" clubs and we’re working with him on getting into the "I know my phone number" and "I can tie my shoes" clubs. After we were done talking with Mrs. C, we picked him up from Kids World (at the school) and went to the Book Fair in the library. We bought a few books and then went to Buffalo Wild Wings for dinner. Then we headed home and went through the stuff in Robert’s folder from school and read his books – he has books 14 and 15 now!! He’s doing so well with reading. We played for a while before Ryan tucked him in bed and then I had a nice chat with my cousin H and I stitched for a little bit. Off to bed now – after I go get the mail. Forgot again earlier. Oops.

Today’s high: 51
Current: 40

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The final school, a free lunch, and home to my guys!!

This morning we were able to sleep in a little longer as we weren’t leaving until 0730 instead of 0630.  So when I got up, I finished getting packed and headed down to check out and have breakfast.  Then we got the truck loaded up and we headed to our final high school.  We had about 200 students in there from various music classes (and some not) and I think some from other schools as well, but I’m not sure.  It went really well and they had lots of really good questions.  And then when we were done playing, any students that wanted to come up and talk with us one on one could do that.  I had a few talk to me about Army stuff and music stuff.  Then we got our instruments in the truck and we headed out.  We stopped for a mid-morning snack at Krispy Kreme and boy was that nice!  Then we headed south and somewhere around Tucson we stopped at Cracker Barrel for lunch.  We had asked the server if she could split the check 5 ways for us and initially she said sure, she could do that.  Then a while later, she came back and informed us that she would be unable to split the check – as someone at another table had paid our entire bill!!!  They just wanted to thank us for our service to our country.  So the Brass Quintet got a second meal paid for while on TDY (the first was when we were at Prescott last month).  That’s really cool – and totally made our day.  Keep that in mind – if you ever see a service member (Soldier, Sailor, Airman, or Marine), pay for their meal.  We appreciate it.  🙂  After we were done eating, we headed for Cold Sweet Home!  A cold front came through here and brrrrrr.  We got back to the band hall and got the truck unloaded and soon after, Ryan showed up to pick me up to go home.  Once home, we got some more pictures up on the walls – our Army wall is almost done.  Then we went and got Robert from school and went to Arby’s for dinner.  Robert sure was happy to see me!!  After dinner, we headed home and Ryan went to the Legion for a meeting he was invited to attend.  Robert and I played for a while and then he read his books from school to me.  He got 2 new books while I was gone!!!!  Then it was bedtime and he helped me read his bedtime Bible story.  I chatted with my friend A and crocheted for a little bit and now I’m going to bed.

Today’s high:  61 (Scottsdale), 57 (Sierra Vista)
Current – please tell me what’s wrong with this picture:  Sierra Vista – 40, Gwinn, MI – 41, Okemos, MI – 41, Carthage, NY – 47.  Why is it that the farther north towns have HIGHER temps than here in SOUTHERN Arizona????

School Number 3 and a nice run

This morning was the same as yesterday – quick breakfast and then head out to a high school.  We played for 2 classes at this high school – not a lot of questions, and one of the band classes didn’t have any trombone players.  Huh???  LOL.  They both went well and several of the kids got business cards so they can call with questions later on.  Once we were done there, we headed back to the hotel to get out of uniform.  We met back up at 1100 to go to lunch.  We went to a Persian place across the street from the hotel.  That was some good food!!!  And huge portions.  None of us finished all our food.  And then it was back to my room again.  I stitched for about 10 minutes, but I was sleepy so I took about a 45 minute or so nap.  Then I did computer stuff until 1500 when I met up with JB and we went for a run.

We had intended for 4 miles, but we ended up going 6.02 miles in 1:07:39 and then walked home about a mile and a half.  We kind of turned the wrong way on a street and ended up sort of getting lost.  But there was another girl out running and I stopped her and asked her how to get back to Scottsdale Rd.  We were only about 2 1/2 miles in the wrong direction.  Oops!!  But it was a really good run.  I probably could have run the last mile and a half, and maintained an 11 minute pace (our pace was 11:14), but since it was JB’s first time running in probably 3 weeks and he was hurting, I walked with him.  It was a nice walk back after a great run.

Then SHa came with me and we walked about 3/4 mile to a Road Runner Sports store!!!  When we walked in, it was like my catalog had come to life!  Wow!  A really nice girl helped us, and did tests of our feet to see what they did and I ran on a treadmill barefoot and they had a video camera set up to watch what my feet and ankles do.  HOLY CRAP do I overpronate!  My ankles went way in.  So she got me a shoe and an insole that really felt comfy and once I have money, I’ll be ordering new running shoes and insoles.  I also tried on a couple of pairs of running tights and found a pair that I like, and I’ll get those once I have money as well – for cold-weather running.  S got a new pair of shoes and some shorts and socks and a fuel belt.  Then we walked back to the hotel, just in time for dinner.  I changed quick and then we headed to California Pizza Kitchen for dinner.  SHo and I shared a Works pizza (and I picked off the sausage), SHa and CR shared a pizza, and JB had something by himself.  It was really good!!  Then we went to Yogurtland for dessert again before heading back to the hotel for the evening.  I finally got a post-run shower and then stitched for a little while.  Off to dreamland now. . .

Today’s high:  80
Current:  64

High Schools 1 & 2

We met in the lobby of the hotel at 0630 this morning and grabbed a quick breakfast (breakfast starts at 0630) before heading out to High School number 1.  There were maybe 50 students and it went pretty well.  They had some good questions.  Then it was off to High School number 2.  Fewer students and less time (we actually didn’t have time for very many questions) and we played a whole lot better.  Of course, we were more warmed up for that.  Then we were done for the day.  We headed back to the hotel to get changed out of uniform.  I had a little bit of computer time and I stitched a little bit before we met up for lunch at 1130.  We went to Red Robin for lunch.  Then it was back to the hotel, and I tried to stitch some more, but I kept dozing off so I opted for a nap instead.  I slept for like 3 hours!  Then I stitched for almost an hour after that before we met up for dinner.  We were all still kind of full from lunch, so we just went to Yogurtland for dinner.  Then after we ate, we went to a place that had putt-putt golf and go-karts.  We raced the go-karts three times and played a round of putt-putt golf.  We had an absolute blast!!  Then it was back to the hotel and I got a little bit more stitching done and now I’m going to read for a bit and get some sleep before tomorrow’s High Schools.

Today’s high:  82
Current:  54

Church times 2 and north to Phoenix

Today was Reformation Sunday, and on festival Sundays such as today, the choir sings at both the 0800 and 1100 services.  So we were at the church at 0730 so I was ready for choir warm-ups before the service.  We processed in singing A Mighty Fortress is Our God and the service was really nice.  After the service, I got out of my choir robe and we visited for a little bit and then went back in the church for the 0930 Sunday School opening.  After the kids left for Sunday School, Ryan and I went home for a little while and I found a quickie wedding cross stitch chart and finished packing.  Then it was back to church for 1030 for warm-ups for the 1100 service.  Ryan picked up  Robert from SS and they went and got gas in the van and had time for lunch at home before coming back to pick me up.  After the choir sang at the 1100 service, several of us choir members that had already been through the 0800 service left.  The guys picked me up and we headed home for me to finish getting ready for my trip.

Shortly before 1300, we headed to the band hall and the guys said good bye to me.  The Brass Quintet got the truck loaded up with our suitcases and instruments and we headed to Phoenix where we will be performing for band kids from 7 area high schools in the next few days.  The drive up was really good and I stitched the whole way.  Once we arrived and got checked in, we had some time before meeting up for dinner and I stitched for a little bit more and made my weekly phone call home to Mom & Dad.  At 1800 we met up in the lobby and headed out to dinner.  We went to Pappaedeaux Seafood Kitchen.  Oh my was that some good food!!!  I even got to try fried alligator (a couple of the guys got some for an appetizer and they shared).  It was really good.  I had Stuffed Shrimp Montage – super HUGE shrimp oven-baked stuffed with lump crab cake and covered with a parmesan cheese sauce.  It was WAY good!!!!  After we had all eaten our fill and sat and relaxed and chatted for a while, we headed to Yogurtland for dessert.  I love that you pay by the ounce there – 30 cents an ounce.  My yogurt (frozen type) tonight only about $1.25.  LOL  After we had finished eating there, we headed back to the hotel and now I’m going to bed.

Today’s high:  87 (Scottsdale)
Current:  74

Relaxing Saturday

I woke up this morning and got into my running clothes and headed out the door.  I went for a 9.11 mile run in 1:57:04, a nice easy 12:50 pace.  I only walked during my water breaks every mile and a half (and GU at mile 4.5) and at the 4 intersections I had to wait to cross.  It was a really good run.  I made a big loop and utilized 3 different multi-use paths.  It was about 55 degrees when I left out about 0815 and 70 when I got home 2 hours later.  I felt really good and enjoyed being out on the roads. 

After I got home, Robert and I made cinnamon streusel coffee cake stuff for breakfast and Ryan went to the store and got some milk.  Then we ate and relaxed for a while.  I did my computer stuff, Robert watched cartoons, Ryan played on his computer.  And I got a load of laundry done.  After a while, we headed out to post and wandered around the PX for a while and then went to the commissary for groceries for the week.  For the last 3 weeks, we have not spent more than $40 on groceries!  Then we decided to go exploring on our way home, and we went out the West Gate.  Well, we ended up in the middle of nowhere and it took almost an hour to get home.  But it was some pretty scenery and it was fun exploring.  Once we were home I got the groceries put away and did another load of laundry.  We went to Golden Corral for dinner and then home to fold laundry and get the house cleaned up a little.  After Robert was tucked into bed I stitched for a while and we watched Tivo.

Today’s high:  80
Current:  62

Retirement Ceremony, Pictures in Tombstone, and Buffalo Wild Wings

Today was an early and long day.  We had formation at 0615 so we could go over the music for this morning’s ceremony.  The ceremony – Quarterly Installation Retirement Ceremony (IRC) – started at 0730 and was fairly short.  After a little bit of time at the band hall, we all go on the bus and headed to Tombstone.  I stitched during the ride out there.  Then we did full band and ensemble pictures out there.  We took pictures in about 5 or so different places around the town – some with instruments and some without.  After we were done, we all got back on the bus and headed back to Sierra Vista and went to Buffalo Wild Wings for lunch.  That was nice and lots of good conversations at our table.  Once we were done, it was back to the band hall to do details and then we were done for the day.  I headed home and got changed and just relaxed for a while and read the newspapers from the past couple of days.  Then we went and got Robert from school and headed out to post.  At the rodeo arena on post they had some activities for kids and then we went on the Haunted hayride.  It was pretty scary in some places, but Robert did really well.  He did get scare some, but he didn’t scream at all – WAY less than the teenage girls in the back of the trailer.  After the ride was done (about 20 minutes or so), we hit the food booth for dinner.  Ryan and Robert had hotdogs and I had a caramel apple.  Robert and I had hot apple cider and Ryan had Dr Pepper.  Then we headed home and got Robert to bed.  Now it’s my turn. . .

Today’s high:  77
Current:  62

A Good Day

This morning started off with the BQ playing at a graduation ceremony.  The ceremony went well once it got started – it started like 15 minutes late.  Then it was back to the band hall to change from Class A’s into ACUs for the rest of the day.  I spent the rest of the morning in my office.  I ate lunch and stitched.  After lunch, we had to go to an awards ceremony for a change of command the band did the beginning of April.  They gave out other awards as well.  It lasted about a half hour, so not too bad.  Then it was back to the band hall for Brass Quintet rehearsal.  We just went over our pieces that we’ll be playing at the schools next week.  It was a fun rehearsal, but we got stuff accomplished too.  I really enjoy being in this group.  After rehearsal, we were pretty much done for the day so after a last check of my e-mail and stuff, I headed home and got changed into running clothes.  I went out for a run – 6.25 miles in 1:14:16, an 11:53 pace.  I felt really good while running, and it was a really comfortable pace.  It was about 75 degrees.  I saw a good dozen or so other people on the multi-use trail that I run on and it’s always nice seeing others out getting exercise.  Once I got home, Ryan and Robert were home – Ryan picked Robert up from school on the motorcycle today and Robert loved that!  Ryan made breakfast for dinner.  I sure like when he cooks!!  After we ate, I said good night to Robert and headed to take a shower.  Ryan got him tucked in tonight.  After my shower, I stitched for a little bit and finished a small piece I’m working on for an exchange, and now I’m heading to bed.

High today:  75
Current:  63

Diagnostic PT Test, CSM Briefing, and BQ

This morning was my diagnostic PT test.  Considering I’ve not really trained for the PT test, I was pleasantly surprised at how well I did!  I did 40 pushup for 93% (5 away from 100%), 74 situps for 98% (2 away from 100%), and ran my 2 miles in 17:48 for 87%.  My total score this morning was 278.  Our record PT test is in 27 days and I will totally be able to max my pushups AND my situps!!  And I only need to take 24 seconds off my run time to get my 90% on my run, and I can most likely take off more than that.  I’m looking at scoring my highest ever PT test score AND finally getting my physical fitness badge, as well as maintaining my PT exemption!!  

I got home just in time to walk Robert to school and then after we dropped him off, I ran home so I could get changed into uniform and get breakfast.  I even had a little bit of computer time.  Then it was off to the medical clinic so I can get a referral to an allergist.  The doctor was really cool and put in a referral for me.  Then it was off to work.  I spent the morning in my Ops office and then shortly before 1100, I headed over to the post theater for our in-brief with our new Garrison Command Sergeant Major.  I was fighting the ZZZ monster really bad and I really don’t have much of an idea what Sergeant Major talked about.  He just kind of rambled on.  Finally it was done and it was lunchtime.  But I had to wait around for First Sergeant since I had said I’d give him a ride back to the band hall.  He kind of forgot about that and was chit-chatting with Sergeant Major.  It’s all good, though.  I ate my lunch when I got back to my office and then got ready for Brass Quintet rehearsal.  We had a really good rehearsal this afternoon.  Then it was back to my office to close out the day.  I started feeling really yucky on the way home and when I got home and stumbled into the house, I went and took a nap.  Ryan got Robert from school and they made mac & cheese for dinner.  Robert woke me up when dinner was ready.  He’s so sweet —>  (barely above a whisper) "Mommy?  Mommy. . .  Dinner’s ready."  I still felt bleh but I ate some.  And then I called a left a message with the choir director’s husband that I wouldn’t be at choir practice.  😦  Boo.  I was really looking forward to it, too.  Robert read his books and got ready for bed and I got him all tucked in (Ryan was at his Legion meeting).  Then I crocheted for a while.  I’m still feeling a little bleh and I’m heading to bed now.  Hopefully I feel better in the morning.

Today’s high:  69
Current:  55