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Ok, it’s been a long long Summer.

Julie has been gone for 8 weeks at her Captains Career Course at Ft. Sam Houston in San Antonio. She finally comes home in a week, but tomorrow I’m flying to see her for a long Labor Day weekend (hence the title of this post). I’m so excited for a much needed, and dare I say, deserved alone time.

The boys and I have done fine while Julie has been away. It goes without saying we miss her a lot and we’re ready for her to be home so we can get back to normal. As normal as it can get with two rambunctious 28 month old boys in the house, anyway!

Tank & Tuck have embraced the thrill of being 2 with serious enthusiasm. While we *try* to refer to this as the “terrific” twos, we all know there’s another word beginning with a “T” that probably more aptly applies. Grammy & Papa have been a huge help this Summer (THANK YOU!) and everything has gone swell. They are truly wonderful little boys!

I’m posting this from my iPhone so I’ll end it here. Been a while, for some obvious reasons, but I’ll post again soon.

From my iPhone…

At last, Spring!

After starting to really believe it would never come, Spring has sprung around here, complete with wonderful thunderstorms and not so wonderful tornadoes. The grass is growing, the trees are leafing, and the birds are singing. And not a moment too soon either.

The birthday trio (Julie, Tanner, and Tucker) had a great celebration on their special day and so far they really enjoy being two… uh, the boys, not Julie of course. Grammy and Papa are in the area for the Summer now enjoying time with the boys, me included.

The boys’ new favorite thing to do: throw rocks… into rivers, lakes, puddles… anything with water in it really.

I can’t complain at all about my iPhone 3G. It is quite honestly one of the best pieces of technology I have ever used, and most people that know me, know I can be a closet tech-junkie. Anyway, if this post works out, I can chalk yet another tick in the pro column of the iPhone.

I’m writing this post on/with the phone. An off topic post, but just testing to see if this will help motivate me to find the time to post more often…

There may or may not be pics attached below…

More soon, hopefully.

Aha, it works!

…I’ve completely forgotten about updating this blog, isn’t it?  Well, let me tell ya… ok, I have no “real” excuse except there are a whole lot of things to do that are more fun than sitting in front of a computer lately and I know many of you with kids can understand.  I mean, there’s been Octoberfest, pumpkin patches, Halloween, the Alamo, Thanksgiving, hotdogs on sticks over a firepit in the backyard, football season, Christmas decorations, and trip-to-Hawaii planning… We are a busy family these days and aside from all the “events”, it’s the simple family time and playtime that keeps us happily busy.

Ft. Leonard Wood had a great Octoberfest complete with authentic bratwurst, knockwurst, beer, and an oompah band.  We had a lot of fun with the boys who loved exploring a little of their German heritage by dancing around and generally acting silly, a favorite pass-time these days.  

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Side Note:  The food was so good at Octoberfest!  In fact, there is a German deli in town called Paradise Deli that has unbelievably good wurst… knockwursts as big around as my forearm. (and I’m not exaggerating)  Believe it or not there is another German restaurant in town called The Hub that has the best, most authentic German gasthaus food I have ever had outside of Germany (and I’m still not exaggerating)  Who knew, here in the middle of absolutely nowhere, of all places…    

Anyway, not too far from us is a cute little pumpkin patch where the boys got a nice ride on a “cow train” before picking out their jack-o-lantern pumpkins.  They liked feeding the goats and were scared of the pigs, but they played in the corn bin and generally had a great time.

“Where’d that silly pumpkin go???”

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Tanner and Tucker were cute “scary” little skeletons for Halloween.  They had more fun actually passing out candy to all the kids in the neighborhood than eating any of it.

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As far as historical landmarks go, the boys’ favorite (and their only so far) is the Alamo in San Antonio, TX.  We spent a week there (in San Antonio, not the Alamo, hehe) with Julie as she attended a military Physician Assistant conference.  Go ahead, ask Tanner where the Alamo is…  

“Alamo??  Did somebody say ice cream???”
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Julie’s Mom & Dad came to visit us for Thanksgiving and we had a wonderful time.  Julie’s turkey was cooked to perfection and aside from the sweet potatoes (I’m not a big fan of brown-sugar-marshmallow-smothered orange goop) , everything was set for a day of reflecting on all the things we have to be thankful for.  I thank God for all the blessings in my life.  


Grandpa & Grandma helped us break in our fire pit with some hot dogs and s’mores in the backyard too.  Flaming marshmallow anyone?

“Hot dog!?”               “Yaaaay!”
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We were sad when Grandma & Grandpa headed home to Ohio, but our thoughts soon turned to planning our trip to Hawaii for Christmas this year.  Yep, we are officially clinically nuts! We will be taking the boys on a 14 hour trip (after a 4 1/2 hour drive to Kansas City) to Hawaii.  And despite how that my sound to anyone who has travelled with kids under 2, we are looking forward to it very much… being there, not getting there, that is.

Oh, but before that our attention is focused on an epic Christmas light decoration contest with our neighbors across the street.  It won’t be so bad that we could stand in front of the electric meter and feel the breeze from the spinning dial… but close.

And the winner is…
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I guess we should light ’em up first! 

Well, I got Julie hooked on Facebook, so look her (and me too) up there.
For now, it’s time to say “byebye!”  Merry Christmas everyone, I’ll post more here next year…

“Where’d everybody go!?”

We have finally gotten settled in at Ft. Leonard Wood and find ourselves enjoying it here very much.  The area is really beautiful and living on post is a pleasure.  We are very comfortable being “Lost in the Woods!”

     “What’s on your head silly???”             “A Cheerio, where’s yours???”

Tanner & Tucker are enjoying themselves here too.  In the next few weeks, they will start “pre-school” at the Child Development Center here on post.  No, not really pre-school because after all, they’re only 16 months old, but the post offers really nice childcare in a wonderful facility and I think the boys will like (and should have) some more social interaction with other toddlers.  A couple of hours here and there anyway just for the fun of it.  After their orientation tour of the center, we had a hard time getting them to leave.  Although, playing in the yard (usually with the water hose while Mommy waters the flowers) at home seems to be their new favorite pastime and with the addition of a swing under the Oak tree in the front yard, we like to hang out there too. 

Julie is off to a great start at the Hospital and has now officially taken charge of the PA Phase II Program there.  Her students have a lot to live up to; her expectations of them are high (as they should be).  The hospital is really close to home too and it takes Julie a mere 9 minutes to get to her office (and home for lunch which is a really welcome change for her and for me.) 

Our house on post backs up to the woods with great neighbors all around the loop we live on.  The boys really like all the bird feeders and squirrel “toys” we put up in the back yard.  They love to scare the squirrels off the bird feeders so the birds can get their fair share.  That is, when they come out of their “fort” long enough to notice…


The boys are growing, and learning, and developing so fast it amazes us.  They are both so eager and willing to learn.  Their vocabulary is growing:  most common words are Dada (Daddy), Mama (Mommy), car, nana (banana), g’gee (cookie), bah (ball) and many other variations of names for things that just don’t translate well in text.  Tucker even says Papa which of course makes Papa (that’s my Dad) very proud!  Tanner has a mean overhand baseball pitching throw that he uses to throw just about anything and everything and Tucker is building castles with blocks (ok, just stacking them up, but hey it’s a start!)  Both of them love to dance around whenever we play music, but their particular favorite, thanks to Grammie, seems to be the Steve Miller Band right now (at least I know they have good taste in music) .  Of course, I’m walking around the house singing children’s songs too, like “If You’re Happy and You Know It” and “Willoughby Wallaby Woo” and a whole lot more.  I understand it’s pretty funny to hear me whistling “The Itsy Bitsy Spider”, or “Old MacDonald” while I’m working outside or making dinner.  So far at least I have been mostly able to control it when I’m out in public without the boys… but sometimes I’m not so sure; people do look at me funny sometimes…

Here are a few shots of the boys in the general store at the Basswood RV Resort, Country Inn & Suites in Platte City before we moved.  And by the way, we would like to send a very special thank you to Gary, the General Manager there, for making our stay there so nice, and us so welcome.  We can’t say enough about how great we were treated there while we were in the process of moving.  Thank you!  We highly recommend anyone traveling through the area, PCS’ing or just looking for a getaway to check this place out.  There are full hook-up RV sites, rooms and suites, a lodge, tent sites, cabins, not to mention the fishing holes, swimming pool, hiking trails and general store with great pizza.  All close to Ft. Leavenworth and Kansas City.   


Oh yeah, and I’ve really enjoyed the fishing at the local trout stream (on post!) and the various rivers around the area.  My Harley has gotten some great exercise on the surrounding twisties among the hills of the Ozarks.  This is a great place for a lot of reasons.

Here are the boys on their first ride in a swing at one of the many little playgrounds around post.

  “How do you make this thing go?”      “I dunno, but look at that bug down there!”

Well, I hope everyone is doing well, until next time…


There is a rather large Army Post smack-dab in the middle of Missouri right in the heart of the Ozark Mountains named Ft. Leonard Wood, sometimes “lovingly” referred to as Ft. Lost in the Woods because of its proximity to absolutely nothing.  Don’t get me wrong, the area is quite beautiful.  The rolling hills.  The canoe rivers.  The trout streams.  The off-road, well, uh, roads.  The fishing (even on post).  And did I mention the trout streams?  I prefer another nickname of the post:  Ft. Living Room.  Because it is supposed to be so comfortable.  That is if you aren’t one of the tens of thousands of basic-trainees that roll through there on an annual basis.  This is actually the post where my Dad did his Basic Training years ago.

So, what is all this about you ask?  Well, we’re moving there.  And darn right soon too.  In fact, we will be there in just four weeks.  And just so you don’t get the impression things move slowly around here, we just found out a little more than a week ago.  Why this sudden pack up and move?  Julie has been offered the position of Phase II Coordinator at Ft. Leonard Wood for the military’s Interservice Physician Assistant Program.  This honorable position puts her in charge of the PA students that rotate through Ft. Leonard Wood for their 12 month practical training at the hospital.  It’s a great career move for her within the Army PA field, and it will give us a chance to move on post to take full advantage of the Army community that I enjoyed so much growing up.  We are really looking forward to it.  Did I mention there are trout streams too?

Julie and I drove down there recently while Grammie & Papa and Grantie & Gruncle took care of the boys for the day.  We were more than pleasantly surprised with the area, the post, and the community.  It’s about a 3 1/2 – 4 hour drive from here through the Lake of the Ozarks.  (here is a map link)  We think being Lost in the Woods will be a very good thing.  Oh yeah, there are canoe rivers and trout streams all over the place… maybe I mentioned that already…  (my 17 foot canoe and all my freshwater fishing gear has been in seclusion for a long, long time.  It’s really looking forward to getting out for some much needed excercise, the fly rods in particular!)

Okay, okay, we have a lot to do between now and… well… now! 

So, what else could possibly be new and exciting after that?  Most important of all is that Tanner & Tucker are walking!  I mean full-on walking around the house, albeit a bit wobbly, but still pretty nimbly for a couple of 14-month-olds.  They love it!  It all happens so fast (like anything around here moves slowly, right?)  We love it too!  They each took their first steps within three days of each other, how cool is that?  Tanner on June 25th and Tucker on the 28th.  It is so exciting to see them develop into little boys.  Actually, not so little, they are getting so big, so fast.  We’re taking bets on what our weekly food bill will be in the coming months and years.  These are definitely growing boys with healthy appetites (they recently enjoyed some BBQ and hamburgers at the KC Masterpiece restaurant), and I can tell you from once being a growing boy myself, that growing appetites go hand in hand with growing boys… we better prepare ourselves for the long haul.  And how!

Since my last post, we have experienced lots of swimming, a visit to the Zoo, the boys’ first Haircuts, we celebrated Fathers Day, witnessed the boys’ first steps, and cheered for Independence Day.  Here are some pictures to catch you up.  Click on the picture for a gallery…

June & July 2008

And, here is a video of some of their very first steps.


That’s enough for now.  We really hope everyone is having as an exciting Summer as we are!