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Tuesday, July 31, 2007

SOME GOOD NEWS FOR THE DAY

Kindi re-opens kindergarten
Tuesday, 31 July 2007
By Sgt. 1st Class Kap Kim1st Cavalry Division Public Affairs

BAGHDAD — Waoud kindergartners, 4-year-old Huda and her sister, 6-year-old Sara, waited all day in their fancy dresses and stood in the Baghdad heat to perform the most important duty they’d ever faced: their job was to carry a small pair of scissors that would be used for the ribbon-cutting ceremony at their newly, renovated school.

On break from school, she showed up with her mother, one of the school’s teachers. When the team of Kindi Neighborhood Advisory Council bigwigs showed up in their sweat-ringed shirts and ties, she got up out of her seat and handed them to the chairman, Hassan Al-Kharsan, who cut the ribbon in front of a small crowd. (read more)

Monday, July 30, 2007

I'M STILL AROUND BUT...

Just been in & out busy.......will try to post some stuff tomorrow evening as tomorrow is another busy day. Hope everyone is having a good week so far & had a fabulous weekend. Take care.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

2Peas Challenge for Sunday

2Peas Challenge: Make a list of your top ten things on your mind right now. At the time you blog. Date it.... mark down the time.. and just number 1-10 and write the first 10 things that come to mind.. no censoring.

7/29/07 @9:36PM PDT

1. When is 'The Communicator' gonna get his orders for perm. duty station?
2. Is he gonna stay safe where he ends up?
3. Will he be home next month on leave?
4. I need to get this house organized big time.
5. I need to loose some weight.
6. I am blessed to have my new friends.
7. Thankful that I still have my old friend.
8. Need to get some scrapbooking done this week.
9. Need to order some photo prints.
10. Need to get a couple more packages ready to mail.

2Peas Challenge for Saturday

Join us today/Sat if you blog. 2Peas Challenge: Blog about your most fave indulgence at the moment. Anything.....
My most favorite indulgance right now are these decadent chocolate covered cream puffs. I originally got them when we had our day of pampering at Ma Bell Salon 3 weeks ago....they are soooooo good. Found em at The Grocery Outlet near our house. If you happen to have one nearby check these out....you'll be hooked.

10,000+ to Take to Streets to Support U.S. Troops & Their Mission in Iraq

Important news! Help spread the word by passing this along to 2 friends or post to a blog or message board, please.
IRAQ WAR PUSHBACK ON THE WAY!
10,000+ To Take to Streets
Supporting Missions of Troops in Iraq
Above: Collage of photos from Move America Forward's
past pro-troop national caravans.

STORY POSTED ONLINE HERE: http://www.moveamericaforward.org/index.php/MAF/MAFNews

(SACRAMENTO) – With General David Petraeus set to report to Congress by September 15th on the progress of “the surge” of U.S. troops in Iraq, supporters of Operation Iraqi Freedom are preparing to launch a massive public effort to show support for the missions of U.S. troops in Iraq.

From September 3, 2007 through September 15, 2007 the nation’s largest grassroots, pro-troop organization, Move America Forward (website: http://www.moveamericaforward.org/) will lead more than 10,000 supporters in a cross-country caravan called the “FIGHT FOR VICTORY TOUR.” The caravan will stop for more than 25 pro-troop rallies along the way. Thousands of Americans have already signed up to join the tour in just the first few days since it was announced online.
"We need to convey to our troops and the world in general that America doesn't lose. We don't turn our backs on our courageous men and women in uniform and we don't walk away from the Iraqi people who desperately seek democracy and freedom," said Lt. Colonel Buzz Patterson (USAF, Ret.) who serves as Vice Chairman of Move America Forward.

"The Fight for Victory Tour is absolutely essential to demonstrate our support of our troops and to send a clear signal to the anti-military folks in this nation that we will not let them bring about an American defeat in Iraq or the greater war on terror. Victory is the only option and we're not backing down from the fight at hand," Colonel Patterson said.

The caravan will be led by veterans of Operation Iraqi Freedom & Operation Enduring Freedom, along with Gold Star Families (who lost a loved one in Iraq) and Blue Star Families (who have a loved one serving in Iraq).

“We’re going to send a message of support for our troops that will be heard from the shores of the Pacific Ocean all the way across this country to the Atlantic Coast – we support our troops and their missions and we won’t let anyone force them to surrender to the jihadists,” said Melanie Morgan, Chairman of Move America Forward.

The current schedule for the caravan includes pro-troop rally stops in more than 2 DOZEN cities across America including:

* Carson City, NV
* Sacramento, CA
* San Francisco, CA
* Modesto, CA
* Fresno, CA
* Los Angeles, CA
* San Diego, CA
* Yuma, AZ
* Phoenix, AZ
* Tucson, AZ
* Las Cruces, NM
* El Paso, TX
* San Antonio, TX
* Waco, TX
* Crawford, TX
* Dallas, TX
* Oklahoma City, OK
* Wichita, KS
* Kansas City, MO
* Des Moines, IA
* Cedar Rapids, IA
* Chicago, IL
* Indianapolis, IN
* Cincinnati, OH
* Columbus, OH
* Pittsburgh, PA
* Washington D.C.

More details can be found about the upcoming “Fight for Victory Tour” at: http://www.moveamericaforward.org/


GOOD NEWS FROM IRAQ

Local residents lead Soldiers to huge weapons cache
Saturday, 28 July 2007
2nd BCT, 10th Mtn. Div. (LI) PAO
Multi-National Division - Center

PATROL BASE INCHON — The rural areas south of Baghdad have long been a trouble spot for Coalition Forces. The fertile land was given by Saddam Hussein to Baath Party members and close friends, and the ties made it a hotbed of terrorism.

Increasingly, however, residents are combating terror in their areas.

On July 23, a local Iraqi man came to Patrol Base Inchon, near the Euphrates River, staffed by Company D, 4th Battalion, 31st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) out of Fort Drum, N.Y., and elements of the 4th Battalion, 4th Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army Division. He told troops that several other residents had chased a group of anti-Iraqi forces away from a weapons cache. He asked Soldiers to remove the weapons. (Read more)

Improved Ninewah security may mean fewer U.S. troops in future
Saturday, 28 July 2007

BAGHDAD — Insurgent attacks in Iraq’s Ninewah province have dropped significantly, and if the trend continues, fewer U.S. troops will be needed in the region, an Army commander in the area said Friday.

A sign of the improved security situation in the province is the fact that the province - which includes Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city - will transfer to Iraqi provincial control sometime next month, said Army Col. Stephen Twitty, commander of the 1st Cavalry Division’s 4th Brigade, during a briefing with Pentagon reporters via telephone.

The Ninewah provincial government has made great strides and can stand on its own with minimal help, Twitty said. “We have a very mature provincial government here,” he said.
The Coalition provincial reconstruction team in Mosul and the brigade staff will continue to coach and mentor the provincial government. “In nine months I have seen this government mature, so they will be able to operate pretty much independently and run the provincial government pretty much independently,” Twitty said.

On the security side, the two Iraqi divisions in the province are already under the command of Iraqi Ground Forces Command. “We still continue to see a need for the (provincial reconstruction team) to be here and will probably see a need for some type of Coalition forces up here,” Twitty said.
Read more...

'19' Video by WAYCROSS

If you have not heard this song or seen this video it is a 'must see' for sure but I do advise you have some tissue handy. God Bless our Troops!!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Wounded Warrior Fund



WWP Sticky Note Campaign: Remind yourself and others to vote by putting into action the WWP sticky note campaign. Simply create a sticky note to help you remember to vote daily until August 10th!

Thank you for your participation and support to help our wounded warriors. Log on to Rezoom.com and vote now for WWP!

A FAVOR TO ASK

As some of you know I received a Wishblade for this past Christmas. A couple months later Xyron came out with a new model which was fine as it has some bugs that I didn't care to mess with. Then....Microsoft came out with it's new OS, Vista. Well the software for Wishblade was not compatible with Vista & those who purchased new computers patiently waited Xyron to make it all work. It seems they did for the new Wishblade but have no intention of update for the older blue one (which I have). I hope I will not be upgraded my OS to Vista anytime soon but we were not informed that a new model would be coming out when this model was bought in December. Please sign this petition which will be sent on to Xyron ....hopefully they will listen & upgrade for those who need it. http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/blueWishbladeVista/

Thank you

Another word for Enabler is Orange

I guess I would agree with this........
You Are An Orange Girl
You live in the fast lane. You love action, risk, and competition.You're spontaneous, enthusiastic, and persuasive.But you're also easily bored - and love to rebel against structures.You resent rules ... as well as people's attempts to control you!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Middle of the week already

It's Wednesday already.....where has the time gone? I sent out 6 packages today....one was actually to our son. We had picked him up an Old Navy shirt so getting that out along with the clipping from my hand getting it's 15 min of fame week before last. Still have a couple more packages to send out & I should be caught up. I am getting some cards made along the way tho I am sticking them in the packages....thank you & encouragement type cards. Need to get a couple of projects done for the packages tomorrow as I will be out tomorrow nite & again on Friday. Want to get these in the mail Friday afternoon.

Talked to "The Communicator" a couple times today.....actually me once & then he talked to his dad this evening. He is putting in for leave next month & wants to bring his girlfriend with him to stay here also. A major dilemma for sure. I really do not think he is ready to get married at this time but if we don't let him stay he will go to a friend of his who we definitely do not like & then we prolly won't see him at all. Not sure why she isn't going to stay with her family as they are basically local too. This parenting thing just doesn't get easier at all does it?

If he is going to try to get leave I'm gonna talk to him about this item I saw on Jack Army about 1,106 soldiers ordered back to recruiting duty. Maybe he can apply for Hometown Recruiting & stay a couple extra weeks. Would be nice for him to earn some extra cash for sure. Hope he will have enough time to put in for it......I think he has to give 2 weeks notice for that maybe. I know he didn't get it done in time for Exodus in December. Will be good to see him but wish it wasn't with so much drama involved.

Well.......it's late.....gonna head off to bed. Have a good Thursday all.

GOOD NEWS, JULY 25, 2007

Soldiers, NAC work together to refurbish School in Saliyih
Wednesday, 25 July 2007
By Sgt. Robert Yde2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division Public Affairs


BAGHDAD — After a month of ongoing renovations, Otba Bin Gazwan Girls High School in Saliyih was opened during a small ceremony July 19.

The school, which has served children in Saliyih since 1975, has continued to deteriorate over the last few years despite some earlier efforts to clean it up.

“After the war, they tried to fix it up a couple of times, but it wasn’t that good -- not like now,” Haji Deah, a member of the Salhiyih Neighborhood Advisory Council, said. “The walls were very dirty and the doors were broken. There was no electricity or running water in the bathrooms.” (Read More)

Treating Tebarek: Combat Medic cares for Iraqi Child
Wednesday, 25 July 2007
By 2nd Lt. Elizabeth Lopez210th Brigade Support Battalion

CAMP STRIKER — The most important quality combat medics can possess is compassion. The nature of their jobs requires these men and women to witness and participate in some of combat’s most heart-wrenching stories.

Late in the day on July 21 at Patrol Base Yusufiyah, the aid station’s normal routine was thrown into chaos by the arrival of eight victims from a nearby mortar attack. Among the wounded were seven Iraqi children ranging in age from 3 to 12.

One of the victims, a 6-year-old girl named Tebarek, was placed under the care of Sgt. William Ludlow, a combat medic from Company C, 210th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) out of Fort Drum, N.Y.

Initial triage showed Tebarek’s left leg and abdominal injuries were so severe that she needed immediate evacuation to the 28th Combat Support Hospital in Baghdad’s International Zone. The medics loaded her on a flight bound for the hospital and never expected to see the little girl again. This would not be the case for Ludlow and Tebarek. (Read More)

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

MY NEWS FOR THE DAY

First I want to let you all know that I am know officially a Milblogger! I hope that I do not disappoint any new visitors who may come visit because they find my site from a link there. Welcome to any new readers I may have from now on.

I heard from "The Communicator" finally yesterday......he just got another phone. Didn't really get an answer as to why it took so long to replace but at least we have contact again. He wanted to ask about 'the rings'......which I didn't seem to get right away but it seems he's in love......yes, again........and he thought he would have us send him our wedding rings because we told him they would be his someday. Guess he didn't want to wait til we like.....died. Now he is bummed that he will have to buy some. I really don't' make this stuff up......honest.

We headed out to Fremont last night. I wanted to go to Joann's as they had the new DCWV Metallic stack on sale & I have seem some great cards done with it. I also got the snowflake & the textile texture embossing folders from Cuttlebug & a new cutting pad for my Big Shot to get set for making some Holiday cards. Then off to WalMart as Steve needed to pick up a few things & we needed some food for Cocoa. I then got some badly needed new shoes .......

Today I made up 3 packages of cards to go out.....didn't make to the Post Office tho. Steve woke with a bad migraine so he went in late.........but was able to make up the time. Still have not heard from any service members about receiving packages yet.....but I would think they should start arriving at any time. I am still hearing from new card makers all the time. We should have a good supply to go out in September.

Time to go watch some TV with Steve......we have last nites shows yet to view. Jim S.....can you email me so I can send you the photo's please.

SOME CARDS TO SHARE WITH YOU

Received more cards from Carrie....All Occasion & some great Halloween ones. Look how nice & bright they are! These are going to make someones day a lot cheerier for sure. Thanks Carrie.
These cards arrived from Mary B. all nicely tucked into envelopes & sorted out. They are so nice.....some of them are very good for fall. I hope you will definitely be sending more. I'd love to post your blog/gallery if you will send it along. Thank you again.
Sheri T sent these cards in but I don't know how to reach her .Hope she reads this (she emailed me since I first posted) & lets us know if she has a blog or gallery. I love the nice mix of cards you sent....thanks for the Fall cards........I will definitely be using some of these right away.
And finally from the talented Suzanne S.....she has sent in several packages so far.....I wish you could see these cards in person as they as absolutely amazing. She definitely should be posting somewhere to share her work. Thanks for the help with supplies too.....I was needing more envelopes so this really helped.

I had a few packages of cards that I sent out this week......a couple requested by folks who said some needed mail. So sad that some of these guys & gals are doing so much for us & no one is corresponding with them. And cards of encouragement/thanks will definitely be sent along.

More later......

Good News/ 24 July 2007



Monday, July 23, 2007

Please read this!

I am posting this article in it's entirety so hopefully you will read it all even tho it's pretty long. My friend knows the mother of this Vet which is how I came to have it.

Iraq vet to GOP: We’re doing good work
By Matt Smith/Staff Writer
17 July 2007

Jayson Winn graduated from high school and was enrolled in college classes the day he drove to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport to see his younger twin brothers, Matt and Toby Winn — both U.S. Marines — off to San Diego. The three boys and their mother arrived at the airport shortly before 9 a.m., Sept. 11, 2001.

“That day I decided college would have to wait,” Winn, of Centerville , told members of the Johnson County Republican Party on Saturday at the Cleburne Civic Center . “I couldn’t let my little brothers do it alone.”

Winn served as guest speaker at the local Republican’s annual July Jubilee, which followed a theme of supporting troops and veterans past and present.

“Going in, I told myself that no matter what they ask of me, I’ve got to do it for the betterment of my country,” Winn said.

Winn joined the infantry-artillery division of the U.S. Army and said with a chuckle that he was slightly dismayed to discover his initial duties involved six weeks of picking up cigarette butts at Fort Sill in Lawton, Okla., and, once overseas, latrine duty.

Audience members laughed when Winn said he wrote the Declaration of Independence on an outhouse wall one day.“

Another soldier thanked me and said it was the first time he’d actually read it,” Winn said. “I’m just glad I was able to make it possible for him to read it in such a dignified place.”

Such frivolities aside, Winn said he and his fellow troops performed important work in Iraq .

“We also secured a half a million tons of unsecured guns, rifles and land mines,” Winn said. “On the other hand, we did a whistle-stop tour of towns, delivering school desks and supplies and building soccer fields. Through it all, I saw people not ignorant and not unfriendly to Americans, though some were, who were very similar to people right here in Johnson County , people who just want to live their lives.”

Crossing from Kuwait — where, Winn noted, they have a Taco Bell — into Iraq , Winn said his first sight was not of burned-out tanks or charred buildings.“

It was families, right on the border,” Winn said. “The ones who suffered the most under Saddam’s regime, that they didn’t want or understand. We were told not to give away our water or MREs [meals ready to eat, or rations] to these starving people, but, of course, we did.”

Seeing villages in Iraq reminded Winn of Bible stories in Sunday school, he said. He imagined many of these places probably still look much as they did 2,000 years ago.“People say we should and shouldn’t be there, and that’s their prerogative,” Winn said. “But my experience was that I met people who convinced me we did the right thing. I think of myself as a liberator.

People say we should do something in Darfur [in Sudan ] or should have done something in Rwanda . There are just as many people in Iraq who were poured into the ground like sour milk.”

Winn spoke of a man whose hands Iraqi soldiers cut as a warning and another man who earned a degree in engineering at Baghdad University but now subsists by running a used-tire store.“

They tossed him aside after he served 10 years in the Iran-Iraq war because he was injured,” Winn said. “Then they accused him of inciting violence and jailed him for seven years. Every day they put a noose around his neck. Now he’s just thrilled to have the freedom to be able to read three different newspapers a day.”

The biggest surprise, Winn said, was that he enjoyed his time in the military and made many friends. He went in expecting to hunker down and do his part to get the job done. His experience made him realize how special and important the bond he shares with veterans of all wars is.

Winn spoke of meeting former U.S. Sen. Bob Dole, R-Kan., shortly after the 1996 presidential election and lamenting how no one from Dole’s World War II generation, often called the Greatest Generation, would ever again serve as president. Dole was the Republican nominee during the race. Although he said it was unlikely another World War II vet would become president, he didn’t believe Winn’s assertion about a member of the Greatest Generation to be true.“

He told me that in America it’s always the next generation that is the greatest,” Winn said. “Every generation has a group that will stand tall and answer the call.”

Once his military service concluded, Winn said he knew he had to continue serving America . He founded Single SAMS, which stands for soldiers, airmen, marines and sailors. The group provides a voice for troops who do not have a spouse or children back home.

In addition to saluting the troops, attendees enjoyed a chicken-fried- steak dinner and could bid on auction items including Fort Worth Cats baseball memorabilia and a leather chair embossed with the state seal, which State Rep. Rob Orr, R-Burleson, provided.“

Jayson’s speech was very inspirational,” said Dan Hunt, Johnson County Republican Party chairman. “I only wish more people could hear the things he has to say instead of just what we do hear about Iraq all the time. It’s important for us to be reminded that we take for granted many of the freedoms so many people around the world wish they could have.”

Matt Smith can be reached at 817-645-2441, ext. 2339, or msmith@trcle. com.

Copyright © 1999-2006 cnhi, inc.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

21 DAYS UNTIL HE'S 21

Still havent' heard from 'The Communicator' since his Wednesday morning call to tell me his phone had been stolen. Have no idea if he hasn't been able to get it replaced, if he is in the hospital, he's mad at me or what. UGH! Trying to keep busy so I don't stress but it's hard. Maybe in 21 days he will magically be more responsible????

Yesterday morning we headed out over the hill to meet Carrie at Stamper's Warehouse for their annual Flea Market. It was in full swing when I got there. I went in & posted an up to date flyer for the Cards for the Troops project showing what we need & dates needed by. I then headed out to see what treasures I could find. The first thing I grabbed was some trading card protector pockets which I plan on using for my Cuttlebug embossing folders & maybe the Sizzlet dies if I have room left over. I found a couple of Stampin Up sets I thought I might like......I was looking but unable to find Carrie anywhere. Then my cell rang.....it was Steve looking for me (does this give you an idea how crowded it was). Carrie was at the other end & she had found some Military stamps for me. YAHOO! Finally found her & got what she found.....including some Hedgehog stamps. I looked around some more & then decided to get in line. Well I had put the sets back that I had but I then found "Power Up" Set for $6.....looks brand new! I grabbed that & got in line. I had 8 stamps & the set plus the protectors. Then.....I saw one of the much sought after "Target Document Boxes"!! This is the first time I have seen one. It was blue.......marked $1........and looked perfect so I got it too. Now I can die a happy women. LOL! I have one set of foam stamps that didn't have a home so this will be for them. Did a quick run thru the store where I got a couple of kewl things to make cards for a couple units I know & we left. Took Carrie home & then stopped to get Cocoa some goodies at Three Dog Bakery before going back over the hill & home....briefly.

I called Tom to see if he needed us to pick up anything before we came & he said "Ice". Grabbed what we needed to take & went out the door. Quick run into the store & we arrived at Tom's. It was a very nice day...... was just a small group of us but a good group. Good people, good conversation & great food. Lt. Ballard was honored in a very good way.......he shall never be forgotten.

After the late nite last nite we slept in til about 9:30 am. Watched the news......drank coffee....checked my email.......read the paper.....showered & dressed. Then outside to tackle the side of the house which I hadn't done in awhile. It really was a mess out there. Trimmed back the roses & other plants........pulled weeds....cleaned up the leaves & such on the ground....then added some new topsoil. Steve then mowed the lawn & we had the green waste full. There is a lockout for our garbage drivers currently going on here so hopefully the green waste will get picked up this week so we can do more work. It was a productive day tho.

Tonight Steve fixed us some buffalo chicken salads......very good! We then caught up on some TV that was Tivo'd. Finished up the night with Army Wives. That show is so awesome......cable just keeps getting better & better.......wish network tv would take a lesson ya know? So now I'm doing my daily/weekend post & Steve is sketching a bit. Off to bed soon..........Hope everyone has a great week.

If you haven't voted for Melissa yet it isnt' too late......just need to send an email........no other signing up for anything.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

IN HONOR OF LT. KENNETH BALLARD

Lt. Kenneth Ballard would have been 30 years old today & we will be celebrating his life with his father, Tom whom we've become good friends with. Ken was killed in Iraq May 30, 2004. He is a Hero.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Fight For Victory Tour

FRIDAY'S GOOD NEWS

Pictures of a homecoming for a marine recently returned from Iraq , great pictures, and a great tribute form the Patriot Guards!

Tipsters lead to capture of south Baghdad’s most wanted terrorist, cache
Friday, 20 July 2007
2nd Brigade Combat Team

10th Mountain Division Public Affairs Office

AL-DHOUR — With two well-timed phone calls, Iraqi civilians made a few Soldiers’ day recently.

The first tipster called Troop C, 1st Squadron, 89th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) out of Fort Drum, N.Y., and alerted them to a cache south of the village of Al-Dhour, south of Baghdad.

The troop responded, located the buried weapons, and was only five minutes into the process of digging them up when they got another call.

A man claimed he had the 2nd BCT’s top high-value target and would deliver him to coalition custody. The man and Capt. Adam Sawyer, Troop C commander, agreed on a pickup site.

The Soldiers hastily re-buried the cache and moved out. When the vehicle arrived, they stopped it and took the most wanted man and two other men into custody.

Some of the Soldiers were still able to see the cache from their vantage point, and were surprised to see a civilian pickup truck stop there and begin hastily loading the weapons into the bed of the truck.

They engaged the vehicle with an M-240 machine gun. The men tried to flee, but the Troop C Soldiers detained them all and called an explosive ordnance disposal team to destroy the weapons.

Sawyer, a native of Reading, Pa., was jubilant about the operation.

“All of this was possible because of sources we’ve developed, through local-national engagements and working with the residents of the area,” he said. “It’s our work with the people in these areas, our relations with them, paying off.

The primary target is allegedly responsible for shooting down an AH-64 helicopter in April 2006, the abductions of two Soldiers in June 2006, and complex attacks on patrol bases and terrorist acts against both coalition forces and Iraqi civilians.

Additionally, he is believed to be the leader of an al-Qaida network, known to prey on the general public through intimidation and murder against those resisting compliance to the al-Qaida demands and decrees.
One of the detainees had been wounded in a previous engagement, and was taken to a coalition hospital for treatment. The other six are being held for further questioning.

Iraqi informants lead U.S. Soldiers to weapons, IED caches
Friday, 20 July 2007
2nd Brigade Combat Team

10th Mountain Division Public Affairs

RUSHDI MULLAH — Iraqi informants led coalition forces to three massive caches north of Rushdi Mullah, July 18.

Accompanying the informants were Soldiers of Company C, 2nd Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) out of Fort Drum, N.Y., who helped seize the caches just 20 miles south of Baghdad.

“Over the last several weeks, the number of Iraqis who have been sharing tips with us is astounding,” said Maj. Web Wright, a spokesperson for the 2nd BCT. “There has been a turning of the tides against al-Qaida in this area. The people are tired of them and are turning their backs on AQI.”
All three caches were found buried in 55-gallon drums within 100 meters of one another.

The contents of the caches included 13 rocket propelled grenades, 150 bags of Russian mortar propellant charges, two 57 mm mortar rockets, an armor-piercing rocket propelled grenade, four cylindrical explosive charges, two square explosive charges, two hand-launched star cluster flares, a Russian fragmentary hand grenade, 25 mortar propellant charges, 100 12.7 mm DiSHKA heavy machine gun rounds, 20 25 mm rounds, a 75-round Ak-47 ammunition drum, three sniper rifle scopes, two mortar sights, 10 cell phone chargers, five radios, a pressure plate, a machine gun lower receiver, two 7.62 mm machine gun barrels, two bottles of glucose, four vehicle cell phone chargers, an improvised explosive device command wire initiator, a hands-free telephone headset, an eight-battery holder, four cell phone batteries, a 4.8 voltage rechargeable battery, a seven-piece antenna, two flip-open cell phones, four Motorola talk-abouts, a cordless phone, a cordless phone base, a toy cell phone improvised explosive device (IED) initiator, two phone cords, an antenna extension, two keyless-entry devices with IED initiator switches, two magnets, two circuit boards and various nuts and bolts.
Radio and cell phone accessories are commonly used to detonate IEDs.

An explosive ordnance disposal team destroyed the ordnance.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

OPERATION MOM @ HAYWARD STREET PARTY


Tonite we made our presence known to the community & were overwhelmed by the support. We had a booth during this monthly downtown event where we let people know about what we do & sold some products (car magnets, tshirts, hats & pins) to raise money for the postage needed to ship the packages we send to our troops. We also had a little table for the kids to color some pictures to send to the Soldiers.....what pride they put in those pictures. Signed their artwork too. So kewl. The Marines had a booth also so that was nice to see plus they had 2 recruits with them who ship out on Monday....gonna have to call our Army Recruiter and ask why they didn't come too. At the end of the evening a young man with 2 little boys came up......he had recently returned from Iraq.......A SOLDIER IN THE US ARMY. Well I had to give a few hugs....after all that's what Army Mom's are for right? Before he left the tears were flowing as he kept telling us how wonderful we were and that we were Angels....OMG. All they do for us & so much appreciation for the little bit we can give back. These guys are just so amazing......the best!!

On Saturday I will head over the hill to Stamper's Warehouse for their annual flea market. Haven't missed one in all the years they've had em......except the first one I think as I hadn't started stamping yet. If you're in the area you really should stop by.....lots of deals to be had that day. I'm gonna try to get something to do Halloween & Thanksgiving cards....don't have to many of those stamps.

Now for an update on "The Communicator". He called on Monday to say they were gonna take the staples out on Tuesday but they may have to surgically remove some as he was healing so fast that only 3 could be taken out the regular way. We tried to call Monday nite to get more info but no answer. I didn't hear from his Tuesday ... I had my IV treatment & Steve had appointment with eye Dr so we figured he'd call when he could. Yesterday morning he called from a different number to say phone got stolen the night before.........YES AGAIN....but he would be getting new one later that day. He gets insurance on em when he buys. Is anyone keeping count on how many phones he's gone thru because I have lost count now. We got home & there was a call from a RI area code but no message so don't know if he called while we were out. Havent' talked to him enough of late to keep him up to date on our schedule & he keeps loosing the cell number when he looses the phones. Oh well...... I did ask him if he has checked his AKO account to see if he has gotten his orders & he hasn't ......will he go to Ft. Leavenworth if he doesn't get his orders & therefore doesn't report to wherever? That's the place right? Anyway......that's the update.

Don't forget to vote for Melissa if you haven't already....1 vote per email address.

Operation Mom Member having surgery

One of our members, Alice, is having surgery on her back today........10 hours long. Please keep her in your thoughts & prayers please. She will be in the hospital for 5 days. Thank you.

GOOD NEWS THURSDAY

Freedom Facts ::
In 2006, medical care improved in Iraq with the renovation of 15 hospitals. Each completed facility sees approximately 500 patients per day for a total of 11,000 patients nationwide

Making a difference: Soldiers get to know locals in Fira Shia
Thursday, 19 July 2007
By Staff Sgt. Jon Cupp

1st Brigade Comabt Team, 1st Cavalry Division Public Affairs

FIRA SHIA — The Soldiers of Battery B, 1st Battalion, 37th Field Artillery Regiment are reaching out in operations to build relationships and trust with people living in the areas in which they patrol.
In one outreach project, the troops from the battery conducted a census to gather an accurate assessment of population size and statistics on the area while at the same time interacting with the local populace recently.
“We grew accustomed to doing these types of operations in our last area and now we’re in a place that is a farming village that hasn’t had a lot of direct coalition interaction,” said Capt. Robert Callaghan, the battery commander, who hails from Winterpark, Fla. He explained that interacting with the people of Fira Shia also helps in getting information that leads to finding insurgents as well as weapons caches. “We’ve been very successful in the area so far and the people have been very nice and cooperative.” (Read More)


Iraqi informants lead U.S. Soldiers to weapons, IED caches
July 19, 2007
2nd BCT, 10th Mtn. Div. (LI) PAO Multi-National Division – Center PAO


RUSHDI MULLAH, Iraq — Iraqi informants led Coalition Forces to three significant caches north of Rushdi Mullah, Iraq, July 18.
Accompanying the informants were Soldiers of Company C, 2nd Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) out of Fort Drum, N.Y., who helped seize the caches just 20 miles south of Baghdad.
“Over the last several weeks, the number of Iraqis who have been sharing tips with us is astounding,” said Maj. Web Wright, a spokesperson for the 2nd BCT. “There has been a turning of the tides against al Qaeda in this area. The people are tired of them and are turning their backs on AQI.”
All three caches were found buried in 55-gallon drums within 100 meters of one another.
The contents of the caches included 13 rocket propelled grenades, 150 bags of Russian mortar propellant charges, two 57mm mortar rockets, an armor-piercing rocket propelled grenade, four cylindrical explosive charges, two square explosive charges, two hand-launched star cluster flares, a Russian fragmentary hand grenade, 25 mortar propellant charges, 100 12.7mm DiSHKA heavy machine gun rounds, 20 25mm rounds, a 75-rounds Ak-47 ammunition drum, three sniper rifle scopes, two mortar sights, 10 cell phone chargers, five radios, a pressure plate, a machine gun lower receiver, two 7.62mm machine gun barrels, two bottles of glucose, four vehicle cell phone chargers, an improvised explosive device command wire initiator, a hands-free telephone headset, an eight-battery holder, four cell phone batteries, a 4.8 voltage rechargeable battery, a seven-piece antennae, two flip-open cell phones, four Motorola talk-abouts, a cordless phone, a cordless phone base, a toy cell phone IED initiator, two phone cords, an antennae extension, two keyless-entry devices with IED initiator switches, two magnets, two circuit boards and various nuts and bolts.
The radio and cell phone accessories are commonly used to detonate IEDs.
The ordnance was destroyed by an explosive ordnance disposal team.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Please vote for Melissa!!

Hey! One of our cardmakers, Melissa, has been chosen as a Celebrations Contest Finalist for her "Wedding Collection" entry....it's the 1st one. You don't need to sign up for anything.......just send an by emailing them. Please make the subject of your email "Celebrations Contest". Include the title and number of your favorite submission in the body of your email. Only one vote per email address only please. Multiple votes from the same email will be deleted. Voting will continue until August 9th. Your email address will never be used for any other purpose.

Good luck Melissa....I think your entry IS THE BEST!

THE THINGS WE SO TAKE FOR GRANTED

Why Do Iraqis Want OUR Water? (JackArmy)

Has anyone ever noticed that we (the Coalition Forces) give away a lot of water? Look at the picture on Pam's Iraq War Today blog. The boy seems to pause and smile while he toodles off with a case of water. Note anything special about the water? Is it crystal-clear, mountain-spring, calorie-free, wrinkle-reducing, age-reversing water with magical properties that attract unicorns and leprechauns? Nope, it's just water. Clean, purified and bottled by Uncle Sam, not Uncle Ahmed.

But, here's the kicker, there's lots of water here! I see it all time. Yeah, yeah, it's a desert, it's the "sandbox" and all that, but there's water here. There are rivers all over the place and where there aren't rivers there are wells. And you can't tell me otherwise for two reasons. First, and most convincing, I've seen it with my own eyes. Granted, I haven't been everywhere in Iraq, but I've been over a good chunk of it and from what I can tell, Anbar is the only place that is really really like the desert that Americans think of: sand and sun. My second proof of water? Uh, the fact that civilization was born here thousands of years ago and people have thrived here ever since. Duh. People need water. People's cattle, sheep, goats, donkey, geese, dogs, cats, chickens and all the other animals that hang around people here need water, too. If there wasn't water, there wouldn't be all these people everywhere. Without all the people, no war. So, to end the war I propose we take all the water and give it to Water Park USA and give Iraqis a $6 dollar off coupon for one visit, limit family of five.

Ok, kidding there.(Read More)

GOOD NEWS FOR TODAY......

Medical Clinic to Benefit Iraqis for Years to Come
Wednesday, 18 July 2007
By A. Al Bahrani Gulf Region South


BASRAH—June 17, 2007 — The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Gulf Region South district, turned over another newly constructed Primary Healthcare Center (PHC) to the Basrah Health Directorate in May 2007.

The PHC is located in the Al-Qurna district, and marks another step toward the transition to the future of Iraq’s Health Care System.

“Al-Qurna PHC project was completed on May 28, 2007, and has been designed to provide comprehensive medical care services for more than 30,000 patients each year,” said project engineer James Hodges, Basrah Area Office, Gulf Region South district. (Read More)


Coalition Forces in Iraq Taking Down Enemy ‘Cell by Cell’
By Fred W. Baker III
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, July 18, 2007 – Coalition forces in Iraq are taking down the insurgency cell by cell, killing key foreign leaders in the recent surge of operations, a senior spokesman in the region said today.

“We are on the offensive. We own the initiative, and we’re pressing al Qaeda in Iraq and also the secret cells and the rogue elements of (the) Jaysh al-Mahdi (militia). We’re also seeing an increase in the capacity and capability of Iraqi security forces,” said Navy Rear Adm. Mark I. Fox, the communications chief for strategic effects with Multinational Force Iraq. Fox was speaking via telephone from Iraq to online journalists and “bloggers.”

Fox said the July 4 capture of Khalid Abdul Fatah Daud Mahmud al-Mashadani, thought to the most senior Iraqi in the al Qaeda in Iraq network, highlights the significance of coalition forces’ operations to kill foreign al Qaeda leaders. (Read More)

Pace Walks Ramadi’s Streets, Notes Progress
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

RAMADI, Iraq, July 17, 2007 – This Anbar province city was once held up as a symbol of U.S. failure in Iraq. Al Qaeda in Iraq controlled Ramadi. It was enemy territory, and American servicemembers called it the Wild West of Iraq.

Just a few months ago, the idea that Americans could walk around the center of the city would have been unthinkable. U.S. personnel could not move from one heavily fortified area to another without receiving small-arms fire or an improvised explosive device attack. Times change. A striking illustration of the changing fortunes of Ramadi took place today, when Marine Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, took a walk around downtown. (Read More)

Here is video to go along with this last article about Gen Pace......

CNN correspondent Barbara Starr usually reports cynically from Washington, DC, but this week she's embedded in Iraq traveling with GEN Peter Pace and expressed astonishment at the positive conditions in that city. We are winning in Iraq.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

CARDS THAT I HAVE RECEIVED.

They are still coming........YAHOO! Don't forget we are needing Halloween & Thanksgiving cards for the next shipping also.
These cards are from Carrie.....we almost thought they were lost but they arrived safe & sound the other day. I think they went on a nice vacation. Thank you so much Carrie.
These cards are from Susan.....I'm not sure how she found me but she sent lots & lots of cards for ALL occasions just about. She is somehow affiliated with the Air Force I know. If you see this please get in touch so I have your email address or a link to your blog if you have one.
More cards from Susan........Thank you so very much.
These cards are from Nylene. She also sent alot of Valentine Cards that had been made by students at BYU in Utah but then they couldnt' find any way to get them to the troops until Nylene found me. I am sending some of them off now in the packages I'm sending out now.....these are all made out TO the troops. Thank you Nylene for finding me!!!

A Request

Hello all.......

I have had people ask how else they can help if they don't make cards. I just got an offer for a great deal on double sided tape which is what I use to put cards together (I've been going thru alot of tape)....this stuff works great & a good adhesive is needed to stand the heat overseas.....check this photo if you don't know how hot that is. I have spent quite a bit of late on envelopes & postage so any help would be greatly appreciated. The price for the tape would be $16.75 for a box of 12 rolls......this stuff costs me $5.50 a roll where I buy it plus shipping. As always envelopes are always needed....most used size is A2.......called Invitation Envelopes at Staples, Office Depot, etc. Thank you so much for any help you can give.

OH.........Desert Flier and the guys have acquired a Hedgehog for a pet. Anyone with Hedgehog stamps .....can you please make some cards to send them to use.

2Peas Challenge for Tuesday

I haven't been doing this alot lately but this one I knew I could answer.

2Peas Challenge: Blog about 5 things you do every day , without fail. List 5 things you do each and every day, weekday or weekend...
1. Have coffee
2. Check email
3. Take Shower
4. Take meds
5. Brush teeth

Monday, July 16, 2007

GOOD NEWS FOR TODAY......

Here's a few things I thought were good to share.....I hope to get caught up in the next few days. I am currently sending out some packages to a few folks over in Iraq right now so making some cards to add to packages. I hope you are checking the links that I have on the right side.....some awesome blogs there.

Surge progress may lead to troop reductions in northern Iraq, general says
Sunday, 15 July 2007

BAGHDAD — Now at full strength, the U.S. troop surge in Iraq is showing “definitive progress” and the number of forces serving in Iraq’s Multi-National Division-North could be halved by summer 2009, U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Benjamin R. Mixon said.
A reduction of U.S. forces under the general’s command could begin as early as January 2008, he told Pentagon reporters via videoconference. (Read More)

Troops uncover cache, capture 13 suspects
Saturday, 14 July 2007

FORWARD OPERATING BASE LOYALTY, Iraq — Multi-National Division – Baghdad uncovered a weapons cache and captured 13 suspected insurgents during raids in eastern Baghdad July 13.

Soldiers from 2nd Battalion, 16th Infantry Regiment, based out of Fort Riley, Kan., detained five suspects and recovered two rocket-propelled grenade launchers, three grenades and one improvised explosive device in an operation in the New Baghdad District of the Iraqi capital.

In a separate raid, Soldiers with 2nd Battalion, 17th Field Artillery, a Fort Carson, Colo.-based unit detained eight suspected insurgents in the Zafarniya District. They also recovered circuit boards, wires, timers, soldering tools and nine million Iraqi dinar during the raid.

Paratroopers capture IED cell leader
Saturday 14 July 2007

KALSU, Iraq — The ring leader of a cell responsible for conducting improvised explosive device attacks on the people and security forces of North Babil was captured by paratroopers south of Mahmudiyah, July 11.

The Paratroopers of Company C, 3rd Battalion, 509th Airborne, 4th Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division conducted a raid named Operation Leyte Gulf and captured the cell leader and four of his lieutenants.

“Capturing high value targets does a couple of things for us. It limits the threat to Coalition Forces,” said 2nd Lt. Jason Franklin, a native of Catoosa, Okla., and platoon leader with Company C. “It’s also a great morale booster for the guys. … We’re fighting a war where we fight a faceless enemy, so it’s good when you have a recognizable target and take him down.”(Read More)

Saturday, July 14, 2007

A FEW WORDS FROM OUR HERO'S

I hope you will take some time to read the following posts from a couple of men plus a couple of audio interviews of men who are currently serving OUR COUNTRY in Iraq & hear what they have to say about being there. I would also hope that you will watch the video at the end........it's the least you can do for them for all they do for US. Thank you

Should We Stay Or Should We Go Now... (Desert Flier)
I live in a vacuum. I have Internet access, obviously, but it's slow and mostly unreliable. However, when I do have it, I make a point of scanning today's headlines, the progress (or lack thereof) interpreted by the media, and editorials from a number of sources.What I do offer on a personal level to you is an eyewitness account of what is happening in my little part of this world and this war. Ramadi, although a small portion of Anbar Province by geographical size, is a highly prominent city. What comes and goes through Syria must pass through Ramadi. (READ MORE)

/Rant (Acute Politics)
I got up this morning and went to breakfast. I sat and ate eggs and half of a grapefruit, while the tv news helped Sen. Reid tell me I'm a failure. The surge is not working, the newest current strategy is not working, and the war is lost. I gathered via the internet today that he later stepped back from some of his harsher statements- I don't know for sure whether that is true or not. If so, it only adds to my disgust. I also learned that Congress approved a resolution forcing a troop withdrawal to begin within 120 days, down to a "minimal number" by April 2008. The resolution does not specify what Congress considers a "minimal number", which appears to leave the interpretation up to the President. Good job, Washington! Way to send a message! Is there perhaps a reason that your approval rating is lower than our beleaguered president? Those who are both opposed to the Iraq war and in a position to do something about it, our elected leaders, are too scared to act on their beliefs. That is an insult that cannot even be applied to our enemies- in fact, it applies to them least of all, for they are involved in a mortal struggle over their beliefs. (READ MORE)

MATT-SANCHEZ /IN THEIR OWN WORDS (CLICK ON Matt Sanchez to hear more)
Conditions in Iraq now vs. then in this sergeants round robin

Corporal Rhubi Interview

And from BlackFive a totally awesome video.....


And now if you have been moved I would like to direct your attention to this PETITION (I am #330)

Never Coming Home

On Monday, Diane Layfield showed me a new book she received that I would like to share with you all. It is called Never Coming Home.....very moving......it documents the families of the men & women who have been killed in Iraq. I know it is available at Amazon.com & Target.com. Take a look at the video to get an idea of what it is about.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Yikes, It's Friday already

Well it has been a very busy full week. I thought after the packing things would calm down a bit & I could get caught up a little around the house.......wrong.

Friday nite we met everyone at the storage container in Castro Valley to bring product to the hall & set up for the packing on Saturday morning. We had several people show up, we loaded various vehicles & then headed off to the Hall to unload & get set up.
This very nice gal, Mireya, showed up from Santa Clara County with donations & she had the coolest sign on the tailgate of her truck with had signatures to the troops on it.

We snagged it for the folks at the packing to sign & we put it in one of the boxes that mailed out.We had some boxes that they packed the week before at San Quentin that we added more goodies too & taped up so we had half the snack packages done & ready to ship. From there 8 of us went out to dinner. The company was good but I don't think I will be going back to La Victoria again.....not great service & everything is a la carte so a bit pricey for what you got. And they made us all wait a very long time before we were seated.

Home to finish up a few things & then to bed.

The packing went well tho we had less volunteers than usual it went very smooth......tho we were there a few hours more. I think the fact that school is out is a big reason as we usually get a good number of students helping. I was very happy that my invitations worked & we had our local Army Recruiter Station Commander & his wife along with the local Air Force Recruiter both come to pack boxes. Steve's friend from work Jim & his son, Jarod (I hope I spelled this right), who is 9 years old came to put a full day. This was Jarod's first outing into community service & he did an amazing job....we did wear him out tho. Mireya from Friday nite (the gal with the truck) came back & worked all day. We had a couple who are involved in the Flight 93 Memorial in Union City come too.



Bill Sperry who runs the Ultimate Sacrifice Memorial site & Steve Whittaker who is a photographer both took lots of pictures. Also there was Jean who is the Mom who got one of our Mother's Day cards from her son in Iraq along with a friend of hers. Then we have to remember our Scout David & his parents. And so many more.....lots of whom are Operation Mom members. We finished around 2:00 pm & then took the leftover hygiene products (we totally ran out of snacks) back to the container & headed on home. As we were driving down the road we saw a car with an "Army Strong" bumper sticker on it. Couldn't get their attention so drove past it so they could see all our stickers & magnets. At the light the young man rolled down his window & took off his hat to show me his bald head....I yelled Thank You & told him we were with Operation Mom & had just finished the packing. He was home on R&R. He said he had received packages from us & Blue Star Moms. Made the day complete. A very good tired we were. Sunday we pretty much vegged out around the house......didn't go anywhere at all.
On Monday 6 of us from Operation: MOM (2 Gold Star Moms, 1 Gold Star Grandmother, 1 Gold Star Sister, 1 Silver Star Mom & Me, a Blue Star Mom) headed out to Ma Belle Salon in Fremont, CA for a day of pampering. We met another Gold Star Mom who chooses not to affiliate herself with any group there. I got my eyebrows waxed, my hair colored & cut plus they had lunch catered for us.


Plus I got to spend the day with some awesome ladies who will be my friends for life I think.

The salon opened just for us.....and the stylists all came in on their days off......very kewl. Plus there was a reporter from the local paper & Mayor Bob Wasserman stopped by to say hello to us all. Was very special .......

and my hand was in today's paper. LOL! I scanned it for all to see.

Wednesday morning I tried to call "The Communicator" only to find he was 'in the hospital'. He couldn't talk much but sounded awful, said he had gotta a head laceration & would call me back. GREAT! He finally called about 3:30pm our time & said he had 10 staples in his head. One of the Drill Sgts had grabbed him that morning because he had handcuffs with keys to go after a soldier who was gonna go AWOL. "The Communicator" took off running after him, jumped a bush & ran headfirst into an awning (metal one) .......down he went. Said the DS was laughing til he saw all the blood. Off to the hospital they went. They didn't get their man either. He found out today their is some swelling of the brain so they are keeping an eye on that....he gets staples out on Monday.

Wednesday nite a few of us went to the Blue Star Mom meeting out in Danville. There was a presentation from Stories of Service .......they had 4 of the young people who worked on the project, 2 of which Blue Star Mom's had sponsored to go to DC Memorial Day weekend. I hope you will take the time to check out the website.....some of the stories are wonderful. This is history......we need to remember it.

Yesterday & today I went out & played with Jim & Bev......we went to Walnut Creek way yesterday to check out The Container Store.......pretty cool there tho I didn't buy anything.....& today we headed south to D&J Hobby in Campbell........plus we checked out Savers (a thrift store), an Army Surplus store & stopped in to say "Hey" to the Army & Air Force recruiters that were in that area. On the way home we stopped for a late lunch at Claim Jumper. Very, very good food. Jim ordered an I'Declair for dessert.........OMG! They set it down in front of him & he said "What's this?" I actually thought they were bringing it to just cut him a piece off. It's friggin huge. Bev & I just started cracking up. No way to eat it all......I even had some. So we had em put it in a to go container & raced back to their house to get it in the freezer. I just called Steve to pick me up there. Definately had a great couple of days.
So now it's time to get a few packages out myself......I've actually had a few requests for cards to be sent out to Iraq. It will be a pleasure. Will be in & out this weekend but will try to post some photo's. Hope ya'll have a great weekend.
Oh yeah.......here are all the cards that got sent off.

Meet Joan

Here is a note I received yesterday & the picture I took of her on Saturday....bless you all & please keep her son, Maj Roger XXXXXX, in your prayers.


Hi Debbi,
I checked out your blog site - interesting. You are one busy lady.
Please let the women who send the stamped cards know that they are doing a terrific job. My son was deployed to Iraq in Oct. He e-mails me about once or twice a week, which is great. Imagine my surprise when the day before Mother's Day I got a beautiful card from him. It was blank inside and he wrote a special note to me. It is the only card/letter I have received from him, since his deployment. I have saved it. Thank-you, not only from me, but for all the mother's who received cards. He will be Iraq for another Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's, but should be home the end of January 08.
Joan

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

A quick post

Still trying to get caught up around here so haven't posted much the last few days I know. Thought you might like to see the video of us getting pampered. Check it out here.

The other thing I would like to have you check out is this Letter to America which was written by an Iraqi citizen to his brothers & sisters here in America. The link to part II is at the end of that link.

I promise I will get caught up soon & have some photo's up.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

More exciting news here

I just got an email from my dahling friend Nessa which is just amazing......I'll let her tell you what it is all about tho but I want you to know that there are way less degrees of separation than six for sure......check it out here.......PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN I will tell you more about this when I get more information too. I will blog more tonite tho I promise. I found her but make sure you check out the first link before you go here.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

CAREFUL WHAT YOU COMPLAIN ABOUT

Good morning everyone. I got this in an email from my friend Ginny...she's also the person who turned us all on to Victor so you know this is gonna be good. Thanks Ginny....put a tear in my eye this morning but it was a good tear. I'm so proud of all of these guys. Here we go....get that tissue out.

A Wake Up Call From Luke AFB, AZ

Luke AFB is west of Phoenix and is rapidly being surrounded by
civilization that complains about the noise from the base and its
planes, forgetting that it was there long before they were.



A certain lieutenant colonel at Luke AFB deserves a big pat on the back.
Apparently, an individual who lives somewhere near Luke AFB wrote the
local paper complaining about a group of F-16s that disturbed his/her
day at the mall.. When that individual read the response from a Luke AFB
officer, it must have stung quite a bit.

The complaint:
"Question of the day for Luke Air Force Base: Whom do we thank for the
morning air show? Last Wednesday, at precisely 9:11 a.m., a tight
formation of four F-16 jets made a low pass over Arrowhead Mall,
continuing west over Bell Road at approximately 500 feet. Imagine our
good fortune! Do the Tom Cruise-wannabes feel we need this wake-up
call, or were they trying to impress the cashiers at Mervyns early bird
special? Any response would be appreciated."

The response:
Regarding "A wake-up call from Luke's jets" (Letters, Thursday): On
June 15, at precisely 9:12 a.m., a perfectly timed four-ship flyby of F-16s
from the 63rd Fighter Squadron at Luke Air Force Base flew over the
grave of Capt. Jeremy Fresques. Capt. Fresques was an Air Force officer
who was previously stationed at Luke Air Force Base and was killed in
Iraq on May 30, Memorial Day. At 9 a.m. on June 15, his family and
friends gathered at Sunland Memorial Park in Sun City to mourn the loss
of a husband, son and friend. Based on the letter writer's recount of
the flyby, and because of the jet noise, I'm sure you didn't hear the
21-gun salute, the playing of taps, or my words to the widow and
Parents of Capt. Fresques as I gave them their son's flag on behalf of the
President of the United States and all those veterans and servicemen
And women who understand the sacrifices they have endured. A four-ship
Flyby is a display of respect the Air Force pays to those who give their
Lives in defense of freedom. We are professional aviators and take our jobs
seriously, and on June 15 what the letter writer witnessed was four
officers lining up to pay their ultimate respects. The letter writer
asks, "Whom do we thank for the morning air show?" The 56th Fighter
Wing will call for you, and forward your thanks to the widow and
Parents of Capt. Fresques, and thank them for you, for it was in their honor
that my pilots flew the most honorable formation of their lives.



Lt. Col. Scott Pleus CO 63rd Fighter Squadron Luke AFB

And so there is no doubt that this is real I did check it out here on Snopes.com......make sure you read there to get the rest of the story.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Mass Re-enlistment/Naturalization Ceremony on July 4th 2007

I have had some people ask me if I knew if there was a video anywhere for this ceremony so I will share with all. God Bless America!!



Packing Day has arrived.

Well this will be short & sweet.....we need to be at the hall by 8 am to get the packing started. We did some stuff last nite so that helps alot but major sorting will need to happen first......I thought I was done sorting. Will be having nightmares about zip lock bags for awhile I'm sure. Will try to give you an update tonite. Talk to you all soon. Read some of the blogs on the right....you'll love em.

Friday, July 06, 2007

MORE GOOD NEWS FOR THE DAY

Engineers build new Female Training Police Station
Friday, 06 July 2007

BAGHDAD — The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is helping to create new situations to enable Iraqi women to take an active part in the reconstruction and security restoration of Iraq.
“The Corps of Engineers is building a new Female Training Police Station (FTPS) in An Najaf Province,” said U.S. Army Lt. Col. Jan Carter, senior project manager, Gulf Region South (GRS), Multi-National Security Transition Command-Iraq (MNSTC-I). “It is a three-story facility with offices, jail cells, an armory, a communications room, guard towers, sleeping quarters and a courtyard for training new female police officers.” (read more)

Thursday, July 05, 2007

GOOD NEWS, JULY 6, 2007

It's been awhile since I've posted any good news from Iraq so will do before I head off to bed for the night.

IAs, GIs bring security to Arab Jabour
Thursday, 05 July 2007

By Sgt. Luis DelgadilloMulti-National Division-Central Public Affairs
PATROL BASE MURRAY — Soldiers of 1st Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, in conjunction with soldiers from the Iraqi army’s 6th Division, have been hard at work in Arab Jabour, steadily clearing the area of al-Qaida and other insurgent forces.
Lt. Col. Ken Adgie, commander of the 1st Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, from Fort Stewart, Ga (read more)

Iraqi, Coalition Forces continue to make large weapon seizures
Tuesday, 06 February 2007

YUSUFIYAH — Iraqi Army and Multi-National Division – Baghdad Soldiers uncovered more than 1,100 81mm high-explosive mortar rounds at a cache near the main highway, Route Tampa, leading into the Iraqi capital Saturday.
Troops from 3rd Battalion, 4th Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army Division and Troop B, 1st Squadron, 89th Cavalry Regiment “Wolverines,” 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), made the discovery during Operation Wolverine Alesia near Yusufiyah, Iraq, just 10 miles southwest of the capital.
Acting on a tip from a local resident, the troops (read more)

Will post more later.

I'M BACK FOR A QUICK UPDATE

Well I sure hope everyone had as wonderful a 4th of July as we did. The parade was awesome...I will get pictures posted soon. We are holding off getting those pictures developed until after the packing as I'm sure we will have more film to go from then too. Steve took 3 rolls of film yesterday......would have been more but his batteries went out. This was not all at the parade......we also went to a BBQ with a group from Operation: Mom. From there a smaller portion of that group headed out to the USS Hornet.....my first time there....yikes those stairs are narrow & steep. Pretty cold in the evening but once got my jacket on everything was A-OK. We ate, danced & enjoyed the company of some great new friends. We even had some Operation: Mom members from IOWA who came too. Fireworks all around the Bay Area tho none real close because Jack London Square had construction going on so felt it would be fire hazard this year. But we got to see alot anyway. End of the evening I used my RA card (I have Rheumatoid Arthritis) so that I could take the elevator down....no way I was gonna do those stairs again. Felt good to be back on land once again.

Operation: MOM meeting this even was quite good. We had a woman come who had been at our first meeting last year......she lives in FL in the Winter so hasn't been around since then. Her son is now in Iraq...he is home for R&R right now tho. I asked her if her son was on the mailing list for the care packages & she said yes he had gotten a package a couple months back. Then she tells me "He sent me a Mother's Day card". OMG!! She got some of the cards we have been putting together. I told her about the project & we both hugged. I was so excited I can't even tell you. It's good to hear from our service members who get them but to also hear from......well actually meet someone....who has gotten one of them is really such a great feeling. Thanks again to those who have or will participate in this project.

SILVER STAR BANNER

This is something I recently found out about....Silver Star Families of America. The number of returning wounded is climbing & they need support as well as advocates for the wounded. Please check out the site for more information.

Also here is a petition to help SSFOA get legislation passed that will designate the Silver Star Flag and Banner as the Official Flag and Banner for our wounded Armed Forces. Please go here to sign the petition.

HOW TO EARN A DESK

Back in September of 2005, on the first day of school, Martha Cothren, a social studies school teacher at Robinson High School in Little Rock, did something not to be forgotten. On the first day of school, with permission of the school superintendent, the principal and the building supervisor, she took all of the desks out of the classroom.

The kids came into first period, they walked in, there were no desks. They obviously looked around and said, "Ms. Cothren, where's our desk?" And she said, "You can't have a desk until you tell me how you earn them."

They thought, "Well, maybe it's our grades."

"No," she said. "Maybe it's our behavior."

And she told them, "No, it's not even your behavior."

And so they came and went in the first period, still no desks in the classroom. Second period, same thing. Third period. By early afternoon television news crews had gathered in Ms. Cothren's class to find out about this crazy teacher who had taken all the desks out of the classroom.

The last period of the day, Martha Cothren gathered her class. They were at this time sitting on the floor around the sides of the room. And she says, "Throughout the day no one has really understood how you earn the desks that sit in this classroom ordinarily." She said, "Now I'm going to tell you."

Martha Cothren went over to the door of her classroom and opened it, and as she did 27 U.S. veterans , wearing their uniforms, walked into that classroom, each one carrying a school desk. And they placed those school desks in rows, and then they stood along the wall. And by the time they had finished placing those desks, those kids for the first time I think perhaps in their lives understood how they earned those desks.

Martha said, "You don't have to earn those desks. These guys did it for you. They put them out there for you, but it's up to you to sit here responsibly to learn, to be good students and good citizens, because they paid a price for you to have that desk, and don't ever forget it."


REMEMBER OUR TROOPS

To read more about this story go to Snopes.com & Truthorfiction.com

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

HAPPY 4TH OF JULY


COOL MySpace Comments

As I haven't mentioned our dog, Cocoa, lately I thought this was appropriate as it looks alot like him. Have a safe holiday......be vigilant wherever you go today. And remember all those who serve to allow you the freedom to celebrate this day, Our Nations Birthday!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

SEND A MESSAGE TO THE TROOPS

Before you and your family go off to celebrate Our Nations 231st Birthday this July 4th please take a moment to thank the more than 150,000 soldiers, sailors, airmen, guardsmen and Marines in Iraq and over 27,000 in Afghanistan who have pledged THEIR LIVES to defend our country. Those who celebrate this Independence Day on lonely outposts in Afghanistan and Iraq are a magnificent reflection of who we are as a people. On Independence Day we might do well to remember that we have enjoyed “the blessings of Liberty ” for 231 years, since our Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4, 1776, because true heroes – our soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Guardsmen sacrifice their tomorrows for us.
You can send best wishes to our troops by completing the form at FREEDOM ALLIANCE. Your message will be printed on a card and sent to a service member either serving abroad or recuperating in a military hospital in the United States .

Have a Patriotic & Safe Holiday.

4th of July message From Secretary & Chief of Staff of THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE

Ladies and Gentlemen,
Here is a Fourth of July message from Secretary Wynne and General Moseley. Please distribute this letter as widely as possible.

Thank you, and have a nice holiday
Col Perry Oaks AFMC/CCE

Mass Re-enlistment, Citizenship Ceremony Scheduled for July 4 in Iraq

By Meghan Vittrup
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON , July 3, 2007 - More than 600 troops are expected to re-enlist tomorrow, and more than 100 others will become U.S. citizens in an Independence Day ceremony at Camp Victory , Iraq . Army Gen. David H. Petraeus, commander of Multinational Force Iraq , made the announcement during an interview today on Bill Bennett's nationally syndicated radio program. Petraeus and his senior enlisted leader, Army Command Sgt. Maj. Marvin Hill, decided to hold this year's ceremony after the success of a previous ceremony in 2003 for the 101st Airborne Division. "On the Fourth of July back in 2003, we had a re-enlistment ceremony.The idea was we would try to get 101, given the unit designation, to raise their right hand. And I think we had something like 150 that did,"Petraeus said. "I think it's going to be somewhere close to 600 soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines who are going to raise their right hand on the Fourth of July here and sign up for another tour in the armed forces." Many non-citizen service members in Iraq also will become citizens during the event. "There is going to be a citizenship ceremony, as well, which will be exciting. A lot of great young men and women in uniform who I can't say are Americans yet, but they are serving and they have the American flag on their right shoulder. They have served our country, and now they will truly become citizens of our country as well," Petraeus said.
[Web Version: http://www.defenselink.mil/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=46622]

A Unique Way to Help the Troops

Operation Hero Miles was created by Congressman C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger in cooperation with close to a dozen United States Airlines in October, 2003. When started, the program allowed troops stationed in Iraq or Afghanistan to fly home on leave for free. It now gives family members of wounded servicemen and women free plane tickets to visit their loved ones recovering at military hospitals across the country. Operation Hero Miles gives ordinary citizens an opportunity to help our troops in a very direct way that makes a real difference in their lives.
(READ MORE)

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