The Military Vote

This is not an official website of the Department of the Army or the Department of Defense, it reflects solely my own opinion and does not necessarily reflect those of the Department of the Army and the Department of Defense.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

It's been a while

Wow... I can't believe how long it's been since my last entry. To those few who are still following or even checking in... I appologize for not being more active. Things have definitely slowed down and I'm taking time to just enjoy myself and spend time with my wife.

Re-enterring the work force has turned out to be a bigger problem than I thought it would. Mostly because I dont want to just settle for some crappy 6-8 dollar an hour job. I want to do real work in a real career industry with an interesting environment. I recently put my resume out to several companies and I'll post up when if/when I get a response or a job. LoL Mostly I've only really gotten serious about finding a job in the last week or so... hehe. Enjoying the time off and living off that little savings I accumulated.

I think it will be interesting to get back to working around civilians in a setting where your raises and position are based off your personal desire to succeed and your ability to back up that desire. Unlike the military where the biggest reward comes from outlasting the next guy :) hehe

I'd love to work in a very technical setting working in the telecommunications field but I'll take something if it's even CLOSE :) and pays the bills at the same time. When I am back in school during the fall who knows what I will be doing for work or if at all. (thanks to uncle sam and the GI Bill).

My wife Heather has been having some minor health problems so if everyone could keep her in their prayers and thoughts it would be greatly appreciated. I'll keep ya posted on that as well... I'm hoping for a fast and full recovery. She means the world to me and it pains me to see her ill.

Anyways folks... that's all that's going on... Moved to Little Rock (oh yeah... the big city ;-/) lol. Love driving my sweet 300zx TT :) Everyone have a great day/night/week/month/year. I'm out.

"The will to win is not nearly as important as the will to PREPARE to win" - I forget who said this... but it was on a wrestling poster my coach had on the wall in highschool. I've always thought this quote was very powerful. Hope you like it.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Oh so close...

Merry (respective holiday here) everyone!

Got to looking at web stats... and I'm thrilled to see that there are still some folks checking in on my blog. I have a couple of updates for those still reading.

Kevin is doing MUCH better. I spent about three hours today just sitting around talking with him. He remains seated for the better part of the day however he does attempt at walking now with the aid of a cane (and a walker at home). Those two items were sent to me by a very generous reader who has been thanked thoroughly. I think it's a little early for Kevin to be walking so much but... he's stubborn and determined so I gotta hand that to him. His former employer will be sending him to the green zone to see an American doctor for the colostomy bag removal and removal of setting pins that were drilled into his leg bones. I'm not sure when that will be but I'm very happy to see him making such good progress.

Update numero dos. We are getting so freakin close to leaving I can taste it. I can't give out any specific dates but I can tell you this... I'll be enjoying a nice steak dinner, an ice cold beer, and the company of my beautiful wife Heather hopefully in less than 2 weeks. Speaking of which, my Sweetheart, went in for surgery on the 18th (I know... she's had a GREAT year already... what else could go wrong. lol) for a ruptured cyst on her right ovary that leaking blood into her abdomen (about a cup). The doctor said that everything should heal up just fine and it shouldn't cause any childbearing issues thank God. I spoke to her on the phone for Christmas and she sound so good, which was the biggest spirits lifter I've received all year. Hearing her regular cheery motivated tone created such great feelings for me... I almost forgot all about where I was simply because of the overwhelming relief I felt. I still wish they had sent me home early considering we aren't doing much right now, but I understand it wasn't a life or death situation. I would have just liked to be there to care for my wife while she healed and was in bed.

Things are pretty quiet here... mostly because it's freakin freezing I guess. It feels VERY cold here now with the onset of winter. Acclimation to 135 degree weather made even 70 degree weather feel a bit chilly... and now that it gets down to the 40's it's sort of a body shock. Ridiculous I know... cold deserts... psh. Insurgents must not like cold weather lol... hallelujah.

Most of our guys are already gone and I am ready for my number to come up so I can get on that chopper and get the heck out of dodge. This deployment has FLOWN by thanks to the support of my wonderful wife, my family, and the continuous efforts of SGT David Milholen to keep our internet and our gaming to the max! LOL

Thank you to all of my readers and emails. It's been a very interesting year and now it's time to go back and be everything I've missed. Also I'm psyched that I'll get to go back and enjoy a little bit of my beautiful country. America!!! F-YEAHHHHH!!! (From the movie Team America: World Police) I love that movie and my country. ;) Later everyone.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Winding down!

We're prepping to go home... the new guys should be here any time now. Can't wait to get back to my wife and the "normal" quasi-civilian life that I left behind more than a year ago.

It's gonna be so great to get back to the simple things, like using hair gel, walking on carpet BAREFOOT!, wiping with soft toilet paper, and waking up to my wife's beautiful smile every morning. *sigh* so great...

We've packed up most of our goodies... like the little LAN we had set up to distribute internet access that we purchased commercially and to play our games like Counter-Strike and various other bang bang shoot'em ups. The Hooch is slowly becoming boring as heck and passing the time without internet in there is becoming an ever increasing challenge... haha. I know... life is tough. Despite the current events in the middle east it doesn't seem as tho things are really "heating up" all too much... we get mortared so infrequently now it seems as tho I barely remember the last one. This is all good news to everyone I'm sure.

Fortunately for most of us, there's a guy here who set up a system for a company called Peace Keeper Inc. Wireless internet RIGHT IN OUR TENT! How awesome is that? They have been here for the better part of the year but I haven't had the interest to subscribe to it becauase we've always had internet in the hooch. Their pricing is a bit high by most people's standards but heck... they are here... in a warzone... providing internet. They deserve some cash for their job well done. Anyway, this is rather convenient because as you can see it keeps me connected with my peeps and my blog. Both very key elements to my sanity over the year... and as the time we go home closes in... tension and anxiety builds. It's weird that way... we've been away from home over a year... yet... these coming months seem to be lightyear away and the time before now seemed to flash by. Strange.

Anywhodiddly... thanks for stoppin in and keep everyone's safe return in your prayers.

Love and Respect-

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Motivation gone dry?

Well obviously the title is a bit exaggerated, but I have found myself less motivated to blog lately. As have the rest of my buddies. Really, I'm just waiting for the MNC-I to shoot a message over to my COM to tell me to take my blog down permanently. haha

I also dont find motivation in cross-referencing news stories that other people already have on wraps so I suppose from now on the most you few readers will ever see are my personal thoughts and opinions... of course any and all updates on my situation.

Keep in mind if one day you get the "This URL could not be reached" error.. you'll know why!

Love what I saw from the Associated Press on Mrs. Sheehan... absolutely wonderful. No lady... no body wants to hear your anti-war, anti-military, pro-mental instability rhetoric. Good thing you're not my mom... psh. I pray everyday that Casey's not flippin in his grave too many times in one day.

Anyway folks... catch you on the flip side ;)

Saturday, November 26, 2005

We're back in business baby!

Well my LT told me I could turn my blog back on. Thank God. So here it is folks. Thanks for the patience and the wait. I'll have much to say when I have the time.

Love and Respect,


Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Awww man!!!

Well it caught up to us. Ignorance. Unfortunately, ignorance of the laws and regulations dont make you immune to them. I hate to say it folks but we (Matt, Will, and I) have been instructed by our command to bring our blogs down, hopefully only temporarily.

Once we submit the proper paperwork it has a long route through the approval process and until then we have to stop blogging. Hopefully, things will get cleared up and we can continue blogging after our pending investigation/submission to the MNC-I (the governing body for UCMJ/JAG that controls internet law).

Something else I'm sorry to say is that I am also under investigation about the donations collected for Kevin. I dont know the details exactly but my chain of command is working out the details with JAG and I will know soon. For now, all donations must be ceased and the account frozen. If there are no other avenues or options I will just refund the money to everyone through Paypal. I also have to send the chair we ordered back because there are some safety issues brought up by my command that I previously failed to recognize.

Again, Thank you to everyone that participated and hopefully things will play out and I wont be in trouble. Yikes... Okay, Everyone please remember to keep our friend and his family in their prayers. bye


Saturday, November 19, 2005

Update on Kevin

Hey everyone! Thanks for tuning in.

SGT Whitley and I met up with our buddy Kevin at the front gate today. Still being carried around in that MAC fold up chair. Good news though, Kevin's spirits were very high, and his health was definitely showing signs of improvement. We skipped out on sleep (we both work the night shift) and spent the better part of the morning and into the afternoon hanging out with Kevin. Kevin stood up on one leg today!! It was so inspiring to see his progress. He told us that he can't WAIT to get back up to speed and be able to come back and work for us again. SGT Whitley, Kevin and his brothers, and I sat around and talked while watching a soccer tournament that was being played at our recreation area. The Iraqi Translators team took the Jarheads into a sudden death shoot-out. They did very well... but the USMC came out victorious in the end as the tournament champions. Very fun day for all of us. After we sat together eating lunch (burgers and hotdogs), and after tons of visits from various US soldiers that came to show their respects to Kevin, we called it a day and Kevin had to return home.

As people stopped by to say hi to Kevin I was passing them notecards I had written out with a URL to my blogsite. There are many high ranking officers ready to show their support for Kevin... which is a very heartwarming thing to know. Just in the time we sat there I observed AT LEAST (couldn't tell you exactly) 5 soldiers slip a twenty into Kevin's hand, coat pocket, or chair cupholder. Kevin is reluctant just to take money from all of us... but we reassure him that we are doing it because we know he'd help us if we needed him.

Kevin's sister, who has suffered a severe mental breakdown, is also a lot calmer now and Kevin says she's doing better but still has a lot of recovery time in front of her. Kevin told us she lost her mind because someone had initially told Kevin's family that he had died in the blast... it seems it was too much to handle for his sister. We are praying for her.

We have the wheelchair ordered and made arrangements to have it shipped here to my APO on base. Nice big rear wheels, comfy seat, and durability. Simple yet effective for the low low price of...$499. Free Shipping. I never would have guessed a wheelchair would cost that... we did shop around for 3 days and this was the best choice. Should be here soon... we are all really excited. Hopefully, Kevin will be able to attempt at walking soon (about 4 months) so we are also looking at both a walker and a set of crutches to facilitate his rehabilitation process towards walking again. SGT Whitley and I also had a nice long talk with Kevin about his next visit which is scheduled soon (opsec). Kevin is supposed to figure out what kinds of supplies, clothing, and household items his family could use by collaborating with his wife and brothers to come up with a list. We will buy these items... deliver them... and the remaining funds will be turned over to Kevin in the form of cash to help out with any extra expenses he incurs. (remember Kevin is the sole provider for his entire family)

On a side note:
Several people have asked the question, "When are you going to cut off the donations and what is your goal?." This is a difficult question for me to answer right now as I don't fully recognize the potential success of the drive. I have also been in contact with an officer in another unit on my base who is interested in setting up a point of contact for Kevin even after we all head back home. His (I'm not posting his name currently because I failed to ask him for permission to do so... I'll do this ASAP) idea was to continue letting people donate to Kevin for as long as it remained successful. The POC in the upcoming replacements would then be responsible for getting the money to Kevin... and this woudln't be too difficult a task considering Kevin intends to return back to base to continue working with the US as an interpreter. By the way... we are currently at 1300 dollars!! not including the donations we've collected on base. I know... truly AMAZING!!