Leaving On a Jet Plane...

Ok, not really...but I am leaving in my Sequoia and will be moving to our old house near a base that has lots of jet planes! Does that count? Hahahaha. Ahhhhhhhh, yes, back to our old casa in VA Beezy where we never saw airplanes overhead, just jets from NAS Oceana. Pretty cool looking overhead and seeing those suckers...unless they flew low and the whole house would vibrate. ;o)

Anyway...we're (we as in not 'we' did it together but 'we' in spirit....hahaha) done with the pack out and the loading of our junk...errrr, stuff. Sean flew in after everything was said and done...not that he wanted to be here after everything, but the needs of the Navy first. My awesome hubby was so apologetic for everything we were going through...because not only did I have to do this by myself, it also was rescheduled numerous times; we changed companies; dealt with typical mover shiet (although our packers were AMAZING); and then lots of other non-move related caca popped up for BIG TIME CACA. I'm thankful that I have the supportive partner I was blessed with and that he is not like other hubbies I know who think they're stay-at-home wives/mothers do nothing but eat bon-bons and such...yes, even some hubbies of military wives think that! Again, it takes me back to military spouse entry I wrote about the quote Kelly found:
"A Navy Wife is no ordinary woman. Operating for months at a time without the companionship or assistance of her husband, she routinely overcomes challenges that would give the average person a nervous breakdown." - Jeff Edwards
Well, tomorrow we drive up to VA. We'll wrap up loose ends here and then bid adieu. We'll pop into DC for Xmas and back down to VA to move in. Despite all the stress and's just nice to have the hubby home for a winter holiday season...and that at least he wasn't out to sea for this whole process. ;o)


In the Homestretch...

Wow, I cannot believe our time here in FL is finally coming to an end. Although Sean's still got a bit left of his dept. head tour, we are almost done. Sean's boat already changed it's homeport. So, he's been up in VA since last week. I've got the movers coming to pack us up this Thursday and then they'll load on Friday. Sean'll join us Friday night. I was a bit freaked about doing everything by myself, managing packers/movers, the 4 kiddies, and my sanity. But, Sean came in this weekend and we got a few things done. We're flying Mom down Wednesday to watch the kids while I take care of bidness with the packers/movers. *whew* Still doing basically everything by myself, but I'm good with the decision now. At least we'll be in DC by Xmas. AND...this is the first winter holiday season we've had with Sean since 2005!!!! YAY!

I'll leave you with one of our blooper shots from our 2008 Lee-Espiritu Fam Annual Holiday Photo That Will Probably Not Go Out In The Mail...AGAIN. ;o) Yes, my big puppy is a crotch-sniffer...and has no shame/qualms about it. It's our annual holiday photo that shows my husband with an extremely pained/irritated look since he has to wrangle the dogs and the kids while I set up the camera & shot (luckily we had a tripod this year)...and yet, not really since I usually have to wrangle the biggest Mama's kids...Remi (the chubby pit who is trans-species...she's really feline) and Jaron. This was off-centered and Jax was sniffing my bidness and well, it was only take #1. Just FYI, Sean's smile has never changed in these holiday shots. HAHAHAHAHA....poor guy.

There are definitely parts of FL that I will miss and this pool is definitely one of them! ;o) Not too mention the 70-degree weather that we'll be having this week! ;o)


Love It

So, not only does this guy look better & more toned in a two-piece than I do, but boy can move!! I can't move like that anymore without something being thrown out or joints popping...hahahahaha. *sigh* I really need to start working out and stretching again. This girl is going to need to be retired to the pasture at this rate. ;o)



So, we said goodbye to the buffest member of our fam today from an old fort at one of the local state parks. I was informed by said buff member of our fam that our move date (in two weeks) will have to be rescheduled...AGAIN. We also pray for the safety of said buff member and the rest of the crew...and for the sanity of their families that are in the middle of moving and/or getting settled into our new homeport....which was our old homeport. Hahahahaha.

Yay. I hope we can make it to DC by Xmas.

Surprisingly, this darn military life has hardened me and I'm just rolling with the punches. The only actual stress I feel is GETTING THIS HOUSE RENTED!!!

I'm posting on this afternoon.

And what! ;o)


Thanks, Turkey.

So, Turkey Day was FAB-U-LOUS!!! We ate the our communiity clubhouse and literally had the best TD meal of our lives...and I've had PLENTY o' great TD meals in my life. I am literally still dreaming of the turkey (w/the gravy...and I'm not much of a gravy person), mashed potatoes, creamed corn, flounder w/cream sauce, and the list goes on...mmmmmmmm. Oh, let's not talk about cookies & the other desserts too. Mmmmmmmm.

Anyway, what a day & time to be thankful. We're almost out of here, and that's a bittersweet it always is when leaving areas we've lived in. I'll definitely miss our neighbors, our neighborhood, home, friends, favorite restaurants, weather, etc. I won't miss the sub-par schools and lack of diversity. Speaking was great to see throughout the year how our lovely underserved community of First Americans (formerly Native Americans formerly Indians formerly Injuns) were depicted. Kaia had been dressed up as a First American during one of her summer camps performances and I was just mortified. People still do that?? I guess so. Since then, I've seen other little kids with the same feathered headband and other garments making them First Americans too. Just lots of misconceptions and stereotypes floating around. I shudder to think how other ethnic-specific holidays/months are celebrated down here. Luckily, I am more than sure that APIA Heritage Month is not celebrated or mentioned down here. ;o)

So, I was on Angry Asian Man's blog and found this hilarious video:

Oh yeah, speaking of, I had to cite him when getting into this spirited conversation with an older cousin of mine about youths of color and the whole use of derogatory words against their community and reclaiming it/them as a source of empowerment. I directed him towards the entry about John McCain and his prior and PUBLIC use of the racial epithet "Gook" and how a very well-known APIA poet Bao Phi used this reclamation in a constructive way. Anyway, I would love to forward that out to certain relatives of our's...;o)

Alrighty...back to the grind.



My updated checklist:
  • Take the GRE...again...DONE (albeit not the strong scores I wanted, good, but not strong)
  • Finish Grad Apps...DONE!!!!!!!!!!
  • Homeschool...been squeezing in time and feeling better about myself! ;o)
  • Start, finish, & mail Xmas gifts...starting, finished on some, and then will be ready to mail
  • Hire property manager/realtor...I'm in the process
  • Get the house rented....errrrrr
  • Exercise...does one bike ride count?
  • Move...instead of this week, it's in a few weeks
  • Travel...need to find time to fit in

So, it's kinda hard to plan things when your spouse isn't here. Ahhhh, the life of the Naval submariner & his fam. It's great to have an absence of plans or just lots of fluidity in your planning. Whatever...this is move #6 in 6 years. It's allllll good. Even though it's smack dab in the middle of's all gooooood. We still probably have one more move next year making it 7 in 6.5 years! YIPPEEEE!

Also, CLEAN HOUSE should be on the checklist...but I don't want to give myself a hernia while laughing. ;o)

With that, Imma gonna do some laundy (one of the few cleaning things I like to do) and bake. Yup. See how my priorities go?


I Remember

So, it's my Dad's birthday today. Actually, his 60th. The only thing is that he died almost 10 years ago this coming January from alcoholism-related poor health. I had expected him to pass away early, but not that soon.

So, as I think about careers outside this well as my previous professional & academic lives. I think about and remember how positive my father was in fostering and nurturing my identity as a woman and as a person of color. I also love how he was compassionate, considerate, and empathetic of others. He was crazy funny and unabashedly silly...something I think I inherited from him. I also inherited his love of history, esp. US history., I remember. I remember the first man in my life...the one who helped to shape the woman I am and becoming everyday. I think about how he's helped to raise the grandkids he's never met by how he raised me. I remember the silly man who would give me, my cousins, and the neighborhood kids rides on the riding lawnmower that, after time, would only drive straight. I remember the Chinese American man born in Washington, DC that spoke with a slight Southern twang. I remember the embarassing outfits and him wearing these ridiculously ugly red plaid house slippers to McDs...but not even giving a shitake. Because, that's who he was...and sometimes, that's who I need to be.

I remember.


3 Weeks

Here is my checklist for my next three weeks...
  • Take the GRE...again (still a bit bitter about my expired GRE)
  • Finish Grad Apps
  • Homeschool
  • Start, finish, & mail Xmas gifts
  • Hire a property manager/realtor
  • Exercise....ok, this most likely will not happen...hahaha...*sigh*
  • Get the house rented
  • Move
  • Be a good mom, wife, sibling. daughter, friend.

Good thing is, our tenants are moving out of our home in VA Beach and we don't have to divide our stuff between what goes into our next place and what goes into storage. Now EVERYTHING goes with us. *phew* Definitely a few less stresses there!

Exactly 3 more weeks and we'll be moving from the Deep South to the start of the South-ish (although MD is considered the South, but Southerners always have a good chuckle about that...Mason-Dixon line...look it up people). ;o)

Anyhoo...moving company rep comes tomorrow to start estimating our pack-out. I say to him/her...GOOD LUCK WITH THAT...HAHAHAHAHAHA. Our place is a vortex.




Either way you slice it, this election was going to be historical no matter what. I was so glad that we had the chance to vote in this lovely swing state AND by mail no less!!!! What an awesome time.


It's feels good.



So, I was on my friend Kelly's blog who mentioned her friend Becca's blog about a giveway on her (Becca) blog. Anyway, it's for these mad cute crests that would be great for yourself or as a gift.

Anyway, head to Becca's blog for a chance to enter and too see how adorable these crests are!



I find that the older I get, the more need I have for lists. I used to rely on this lil' old noggin to do the jobby job for me...but that is NO LONGER the case. If you've had a recent conversation with me, you'd find the violent subject changes are worse than ever.

Somehow I need to figure out what's a good schedule and how I can add more hours to the day...any suggestions? Ideally, more hours would be preferable during sleepy time hours since 1) I'm a night person and 2) the house is nice and QUIET. ;o)

So, the need is to balance (and in no particular order): studying for the GRE which is less than 4 weeks away, grad apps, homeschooling the K-ster, getting the house ready to rent, getting the house AND fam ready to move next month, holiday preps (gifts & maybe cards this year...we've taken a few years hiatus), and yeaaaaaaaaaaaaah.

I'd like to fit in some workouts here and there...and wanted to use my all-time fave workout DVD: Workout: One-on-One Training with Jackie Warner. Seriously...20 minutes, sweaty, sore...good stuf. Even the Hubs gets sweaty and thinks its tough. If you know the know that man is in good shape and doesn't look like he'd tire easily. Too bad the Hubs left the DVD in Mom's DVD player in MARYLAND!! Hahahahaha. Anyhoo...this DVD is great if you don't have much time in your schedule and/or can't leave the house and/or too embarassed to go to the gym and/or just believe every word I'm saying. ;o) The only downside to it...not enough adequate stretching. There are no glute stretches for the lower body workout and it is very glute-intensive.

Anyhoo...atrophy of the brain and muscles...good stuff. See how I've deviated from my topic? Hahahaha...alrighty...back to the grind.


Can I?

May I take a moment to freak out? I don't know if I can do this. I am racked with self-doubt and just plain stress. I just realized that my GRE scores expired last year and if I want to apply to grad school should we get stationed in DC, then the time to do it is now. HOWEVER, the ONLY Saturday date is in less than 2 weeks and I am ruuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuusty. Imagine how your brain cells would be if your main conversation partners are less than 6 years old. Yup.

Do I have time for this? Right now, I should be getting ready for this upcoming move (next month), cleaning the house, doing repairs, homeschooling Kaia, preparing my apps for grad school, interviewing realtors/property managers, updating my very outdated resume, etc.....and now studying for the freaking GRE which changed formats AGAIN (the last time they changed, I took 'em shortly afterwards. This all in addition to the usual taking and caring for the kids/family.

Am I freaking out? You betcha. Can I do this? I dunno.

Did I mention all this occurs BEFORE the end of November?



Tagged my wacky friend and fellow wardroom wife Kelly has tagged me in this fun little game. Thanks, Kelly...;o) I'll entertain her and play since I need a break from transcribing an old term paper from grad school that I apparently did not SAVE onto my hard drive. Nice.

First, here are the rules of the game:
1. Link to the person that tagged you. DONE
2. Mention the rules. DOING
3. Tell six quirky yet boring, unspectacular details about yourself. ABOUT TO.
4. Tag six other bloggers by linking to them.
5. Go to each person's blog and leave them a comment so they know they've been tagged.

My 6 Boring facts:

1. Food is my passion. I love cooking and eating just about the same. It's probably why I have a separate food blog. My appetite is quite huge as I have been ask which of my stomachs I store different courses in. It's also an expensive addiction, since besides eating out (which has definitely been curbed since we've been down here), I have WAY TOO MANY kitchen gadgets. Could I use more? You're damn right I could!! ;o)

2. I am very loyal and protective...kinda like Jax, my German Shepherd. ;o)

3. I used to be pretty athletic. Back in the day, at school, the gym teachers would sometimes separate the kids into groups on athletic ability. Two other girls and I usually were placed with the boys. Now...I rely on my jock BFF Hilary to explain sports stuff to me and live vicariously through others who get exercise. ;o) Oh yeah, did I mention I was getting certified to be a personal trainer in college?

4. I never wanted to be a stay-at-home parent and now realize that I am very, VERY blessed to have this job. Going to grad school and having an assistantship while pregos and when Kaia was 1 was hard...but almost like vacation when I was there. Weird, huh? Probably not too much of a vacay since I started having contractions 5 months into the pregnancy and had a common cold for 12 weeks. Hehehehe. Anyway, from working as a manager in Abercrombie & Sephora to Director of Programs at a nat'l civil rights group to being a mom...dirty diapers, fights, and teaching my kids about life absolutely does not compare. I won't lie though...I sometimes miss working outside the home as well as the extra income!!

5. Stupidity really irks me. I know people can't help it, but I really get annoyed with stupidity. It ain't cute either.

6. I have an uncanny ability of remembering odd facts about things/people.

I'm tagging (and apologize to):

Neel (after the wedding & honeymoon, of course!)
Neha and/or Kart


Argh....I think.

So, we might be going up to DC for our follow-on tour. Fabulous, right? Why am I not so happy? Oh yeah...because now we have to worry about tenants for TWO HOUSES instead of just one. This one-income is starting to hurt too just thinking about it. I would also love to go to grad school...both as self-fulfillment and DEFINITELY as a backup for our fam. But, then again, it'd be like I was out to sea for 2 years while we're in DC and a lot harder on the fam too. At least we have lots of help up there, but we're also not good about asking for it.

Anyway....babble, babble, babble. Anyone interested in renting a beautiful 4BD/3BA house in a gated, golf community in Fernandina Beach, FL? Did I mention we'll be up in Norfolk (for ~6 mos.) before we head up to DC?? Yeah...oh, and we're SO not even close to getting started on our move/getting-our-house-rented process down here. Yup...SCREWED, I tell ya.

With that...I'm going to take my weekly shower. ;o)



7 years ago I was on my way up to NYC do exit-polling for the NY gubernatorial race. I was in the backseat of the car with the Daphne Kwok, Executive Director of the Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS), and Emmy Akiyama, Deputy Director of APAICS. I had recently started my position as Director of Programs at the national headquarters of the Organization of Chinese Americans (a national Pan-Asian American civil rights organization).

We had started our drive early and had mistakenly taken a longer route to NYC from DC. En route, my sister calls and Daphne's mother calls us around the same time. A plane had just smashed into one of the towers and both wanted to know if we were already up there. We weren't. Then the second plane hit the second tower and we begun to turn around and head home. As we're headed home the Pentagon is hit. We are officially lost and confused and stuck between two war zones. We worried about Giles Li, then Director of Communications of OCA, since he was supposed to be on a plane that morning out to AZ, I think.

Once home and realizing what had happened was so surreal. Sean had just left to go out to sea that morning too, so I was praying that he wouldn't worry about me being in NYC. I worried about a childhood friend/neighbor who worked in the towers too. Luckily, she had decided to get a bagel and coffee...something out of the ordinary her mother said, and escaped any harm. Had she not, she would've have been one of the victims as well since her office was high up top.

The weeks following were surreal as well. Being a block and a half away from the White House, there were tanks and armed military police patrolling the streets outside the building. Riding the Metro (subway) was unnerving too with so many talks of dirty bombs and subway attacks.

Still, all that fear and unrest was nothing compared to those who lost their lives and those who lost loved ones that day. Life is truly precious. I had learned that 2 years prior when I lost my father. There is nothing and no one that you can take for granted. Spend time with those who matter. Tell those you care how much they mean to you. Take nothing, NOTHING for granted.

My thoughts are with the families and others who lost people they cared about 7 years ago and how this day will be dredging up painful memories.


Military Spouses

I read this quote on Kelly's blog the other day and it's definitely fitting:

"A Navy Wife is no ordinary woman. Operating for months at a time without the companionship or assistance of her husband, she routinely overcomes challenges that would give the average person a nervous breakdown."-Jeff Edwards

Kelly is one of the wardroom wives on the our boat/crew. I'm not really into the navy wife get-togethers or anything, but do manage to establish friendships with wives I have commonalities with more than just our hubbies working together. She's gone through some incredible stuff during this patrol: driving her and her three kids to Iowa from GA by herself, then going through bacterial meningitis, and then driving BACK to GA from IA by herself...just to say the least.

It reminds me of one of my/our bestest friends Jaimee Martino. Now, when Jaimes was stationed in HI, Al went out to sea for his 6-month deployment. Keep in mind, this was a fast attack subs, so 6-month deployments are the longest underways of a BUNCH o' underways (let's just say that the guys are gone waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more than they are home and this boomer tour we're on now has been CAKE). darling Jaimes had two toddlers, 11 months apart, and stuck in paradise. Not to mention that by the end of Al's deployment...6 months, remember...well, add another 4 months to that, making it the longest time a sub's been deployed. Yup. Not to mention the scary incident of an attempted break-in where she could SEE the guy though the peephole trying to get into her place...compounded by the fact that she called the police ONLY TO BE TOLD that she needed to contact base police AS THE PERP WAS TRYING TO COME INTO HER HOME. Yeaaaaaaaaaaah. Nice, huh? Let's not mention ER visits with toddlers/infants FOR YOURSELF. Try that one on for size. The Martinos have got to be one of THE best families we know, but it always seems to pour on them...not that you would EVER know since they are SO not the type to be "poor me/us" all. Even their children are THAT amazing. If there are any kids that we'd want our kids to be like, we we always agree "the Martino kids". Great kids come from great parents.

This patrol has been crazy. It started with sick kids the day Sean left, hearing of an attempted abduction in our neighborhood RIGHT BEHIND our a man who had been prowling my street and seen me & my children, an attempted break-in last week, having a Nassau County sheriff deputy make me cry in front of my kids at the Nat'l Night Out shindig at our clubhouse after I told him about the attempted break-in that morning and him having the gall to tell me it was probably a racoon....try telling that to Jax, a tropical storm, going through another round of colds, wildlife in the house, things not working, being dragged around the vet's office by two dogs whose combined weight (not pulling) is 1.5x my own, etc. But whatever...things could've been worse. We had a lot of good things too...Kaia's camp, pool time, independence, bigger muscles, self-discovery, updating blogs, etc.

I'd say I'm 95% thankful for this underway. I was always one of those spouses who absolutely didn't want to see their significant other leave (you'd be surprised to find out there are a bunch of spouses who count down the days till the other spouse leaves). BUT, maybe as a coping mechanism, I know there is going to be a lot of good that comes out of it. For starters...we learn to not take each other for granted, have time for self-discovery/reflection, and have time to read ADULT books!!! ;o)

This sea tour (which is Sean's department head tour) has also been a bit easier than our JO (junior officer) tour. A fast attack (the type of sub Sean was on in Norfolk) schedule is no joke. They go out to sea WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY more (lots fo underways), for longer periods of time (you'll have at least one 6 month deployment), and there is no off-crew (which is similar to shore tour). When the guys are in port, they're on the sub...for loooooooong hours. It's hard hearing the other wives complain about these underways since for many, it's they're first tour. I can commiserate since I know it's hard when your partner goes out to sea for months at a time and sometimes there is no communication while he's out. We are lucky that the guys have email access since email on subs is still relatively new. Before you were limited to Family "30 word letters". Yeah. But, emails are only good when the system is working and when the guys can receive/send them. There is no internet access for the guys nor can they receive attachments on their emails (ie. no photos of the kids). A lot of the other wives (whose hubbies served previously on fast attacks) are all on the same page about boomer (what Sean's currently on) tours being a lot easier...and when I say a lot, I mean the whole time we've been down here, Sean's underway time is probably equivalent to a little over 1 year of his JO tour.

Of course, the exception to this "easy boomer tour" is of course THE MARTINOS!!! Al's DH boomer tour has been more like a fast attack tour. Seriously, when can this family get a break. But still, you'll never hear a "poor me/us" out of them.

It's been two years since we've been down here, stuck in an area where diversity is a joke. We're far from The Fam & the rest of our friends. Still, we're thankful. We've got an amazing house (amazingly MESSY house) in a beautiful neighborhood. There isn't any traffic. We've made some good friends/neighbors. The scenery is beautiful. We're close to lots of new/exciting things/places (ie. ORLANDO). Without the Navy, we'd never have so much "family time" since we'd be in DC and always hanging out with everyone. It's been good to bond and grow with what little time (relatively) we've had together. I do miss working outside the home, but love my current career.

Life is Good.


Fay & Vindication

As I take a break from preparing the fam for anything from a major power outage to needing to evacuate because of Torpical Storm/Hurricane Fay, I find myself needing to post the article that I had wanted to post yesterday.

Cheerleading's Risky Lack of Rules

I love it. Notice, how is says cheerleading is a SPORT!!! Yup...a sport. FINALLY. Anyhoo...I like the article and am reminded about my broken radial neck that required me to have a pin inserted in my elbow for 2 months (surgery #1) and for the torn ACL that required surgery #2...all from cheering. Ahhhhhhhh...old high school injuries...hahahaha. Anyway, I do miss the days of being fit...75 push-ups (I did the regular ones, not the wussy ones), running a mile, 75-100 sit-ups, 50 leg-lifts, stretching, kicks, jumps...and this was all warm-ups! *sigh*

Mom left yesterday...which is great since she missed the upcoming bad weather (hopefully bad is the best word to describe it and not an understatement) but bad since if we need to evacuate, it'll be fun stuff fleeing with my 4 kids. Did I mention I only outweigh Jax by 20lbs & Rems by 30lbs?

Alrighty...back to the grind of preps. Lanai has been cleared and furniture/grill moved. My poor baby (the Weber) has flown off of on deck and one lanai. She's secure now. =D Alrighty....PEACE!


Haiku of a Stay-at-Home Parent

Haiku of a Stay-at-Home Parent
by Me

Sometimes there are days,

Calgon please take me away.

Still, always thankful.

Although I never envisioned myself EVER being a stay-at-home parent, I think it's one of those blessings in disguise. I always grew up thinking "I'm always going to work. I will be independent. I won't live off of my husband." Well, I still am working...although not outside the home. I am independent still and have a bunch of individuals who are very dependent on me now. I am definitely not living off of my husband. Through fortunate and unfortunate events, I had enough finances (my awesome mom started bank accounts for us when we were young and invested our money wisely) accumulated that paid for the down payment on our second home (and paid for our wedding and various other things).

I still wondered how I would've balanced career and parenthood. I'm one of those kinds of people that, when working, put A LOT of time and energy into work. I used to make work a was a luxury that I could afford to do since I didn't have kids. It felt really good to earn my own income and work hard for it. One day, it'd be nice to work outside again. Right now, I'm aiming for graduate degree and then see what the future holds. It'll definitely be nice to have the grad degree in hand as a fallback or in case of any unforseeable circumstances which would necessitate my need to work. I'd even be happy to just have that degree in hand and stay at home until my kids didn't need me.

I also think about when I was in grad school & pregos with Jaron. Kaia had just turned one and I had an assistantship with the Multicultural Student Services office. Sean, luckily, was on shore tour by then...allowing him to have a bit more flexibility with his hours. Obviously we needed to put her into some kind of childcare program. We opted for the
Goddard School which was amazing. But, going from a not-wanting-to-stay-at-home-parent-ever to being a stay-at-home parent to grad student parent was hard. I spent less than 1.5 hours with Kaia in the morning, dropped her off at school, go to work, go to class, and then come home in time to kiss her goodnight. Sean would pick her up, play with her, fix her dinner (or rather, reheat whatever I had cooked), bathe her, get her ready for bed, read to her, and then wait for me to get home to tuck her in. That was a hard time for me and balancing those feelings of guilt and wanting/needing to do something for me (also for our fam since we need that fallback option). It wasn't w/o it's outside drama too. One mom told me that she stayed home with her boys to be a good mom and also didn't trust our judgement that we were putting Kaia into a reputable childcare program...funny since I am the QUEEN of research...especially when it comes to my family(not to mention one of the boys said he distinctly remembers being in daycare WITH his brother IN a SINK...yes, chilling out IN THE SINK). Yeah, whatever...I know other people were happy that I was going to grad school since some also didn't envision me being a young mother (neither did I..but on the flip side, that same 'stay-at-home' mom had told me I was getting too old to have kids before we conceived Kaia...I was the ripe old age of 24) OR one that stayed at home. So, yeah....anyway.

Anyway...despite all the frustrations, mediations, various methods of discipline, etc. I don't think I'd trade this life for anything. In a month, Kaia turns 5 years old. That's one apartment, one townhouse, and two homes in three states that's she's lived in her short life. I don't know how time has managed to fly by this quickly. I love my kids and think they are so amazing. They've DEFINITELY challenged my notion of my previous misconception of stay-at-home parents. That's not to say that I didn't have completely AMAZING examples grandmothers, Aunt Maury, Aunt Karina, Mama Yuan, Jaimee, Liza, etc....all whose hardwork and dedication raised amazing, intelligent individuals. I also applaud the moms working outside the home too who also provided great examples of strong women who either worked out of neccessity or mom, my aunts (my mom's sisters & in-laws), etc. I still don't know how I would pump out homecooked dinners in time to feed a hungry family w/o the gourmet-ness of them suffering. I think it's amazing how all these women balance home, work (inside and outside), marriage, friendships, everything...always putting others' needs in front of their own.

In the next few months, we'll find out what the Navy has in store for our family. If we end up back in the Hampton Roads, VA area...then I make seek out a job with my former graduate assistantship. If we're in DC, I'll try grad school. If we stay down here, then...I'll be upping my game as a stay-at-home parent...or possibly some diversity work at the corporate level. Sometimes I feel like I'm letting down my kids w/o them knowing it and strive to be a better mom. I don't know if that's the guilt that us Lee girls always feel with everything or what. But, as I sit here on the computer typing, I know there's something else I could be doing. True, being a "single" stay-at-home parent I do need that time to myself to keep my sanity but yeah, I always feel guilty. With that...signing off!


Jason Taylor

OK, so DC is so lucky to be acquiring this heavenly body of yumminess. Both Sean and I think he's yummy...ok, so maybe Sean doesn't think he's yummy but I sure do. He does agree that he's a good lookin' man. hunny has come so far since we first met. ;o)


Because I'm a Woman of Leisure

HAHAHAHAHAHA...schyeah rioght!!! I'm not all over the place in this blog, I've started my food blog. I'll cheat and make my first post, my gaucamole post. Yeah, baby! food blog is here.



This is my puppy Jax. He just turned 2 this past May, which makes him more of a toddler now. ;o) Hopefully, if anyone were to try something funny with us or our house, he would be known as "Oh Sh*t!" Seriously, if it weren't for Jax, I'd be paralyzed with fear right now. But this 100 lb. beast means bidness. And what?!?!

Jax completed his obedience and protection training with Carrie Silva & Ivan Balabanov of The Doghouse LLC in Plant City, FL. When we move from this area and if we ever need a dog or ever need to train him/her, you better bet I'd send him/her back down to Carrie & Ivan. They are the shiznitz!! They also breed world class Belgian Malinois and I found this on one of their pages! =)

Anyhoo...yeah. I love my big puppy (Jaron's nickname for him) and still love my old lady Remi too (or "Little Puppy" as Jaron refers to her too). My kids love 'em too...the most important part of all!


Gonna Open a Can of....

Yup. So, this article was published about what happened in our neighborhood. Nice to know that it literally happened in my backyard...literally. of the other moms is an attorney and we're (at least the two of us) are planning on heading over to the clubhouse and talking to the director about this nonsense of trying to keep things on the DL. Kinda like storming the administration building at UMD but at a country club...hahahahaha.

This is abso-freaking ridiculous.



How the fart are you going to keep quiet about an attempted abduction in your neighborhood when you could be warning other parents to stay vigilant with their kids??? I just dropped by and talked to the gate guard on the way in and he was shocked that I had heard about it. He's not supposed to comment on the situation and was surprised that I knew. WTF? He said that he and the Nassau County Sheriff's Dept. are working hard to get these guys (apparently it was two guys) and increasing patrol of our neighborhood. BUT...everything was supposed to be on the DL. The gate guard is frikkin' useless since our gatehouse/guard is more for prestige than for security. Plus, the gatehouse is only occupied during certain hours...something those predators obviously already know.

Again, WTF?!?!?!

If I hadn't heard about it from my friend in the development across the road, I wouldn't have remembered about that shady arse pickup truck two weeks ago (to the day) driving down my street and, now I realize, scoping out my children! My arse alerted other parents in the neighborhood and hopefully they'll be extra careful with their kids...esp. older ones they might have previously felt it was safe to let them venture out by themselves. I understand not wanting to cause a panic, but really...that's something you should give parents a heads up on.


Am I overreacting??


Attempted Abduction

So, apparently there was an attempted abduction in our neighborhood this past Saturday. Naturally, I am scare feces-less. The reason...I think this same person actually scoped me and the children out less than two weeks ago. The car he drove matches the description that was reported to the police. I remember being pissed at the kids for taking so long and not listening to me before we had to go to this change of homeport meeting at the base in Kings Bay, GA. Then we're running 20 minutes behind, Sean's waiting for us there, and as I'm buckeling the kids in their carseats, I notice a suspicious truck driving SLOWLY down our street. Of course, since there is still a lot of new construction going on in our neighborhood, I'm used to the construction workers or people coming through to look at the houses. BUT...this truck had some crazy tinted windows and was going slowly in front of our home, the both times it passed us. The thing is, it's late afternoon and the truck was in our neighborhood before the guard stands duty at the gatehouse. I remember being in a rush and forgetting to set the alarm but having had a bad enough feeling about that car, I go back and set it.

Now I find out that there is a predator out there who tried to abduct a child in our neighborhood AND knows that I have two little ones here too.

All I can say is THANK GOD for Jax and the world class protection training he's gotten.

I'm still on edge though and trying to explain it to Kaia without scaring her. So far, she's scared. Arghhhhhhhh.


My kids are sick and I'm a newly "single" married mom. Still, I'm thankful that my kids have stuffy noses and are cranky (maybe more due to the fact that we woke them up around 5:45am to take Sean to the base) and do NOT have stomach viruses...probably one of the most contagious and ickiest things to go around a family! I CANNOT deal with, yeah...I'm thankful my kids seem to just have a cold and hope that I don't get it ("The Fam" is coming into town this weekend). I'm also thankful that I got a few extra days to talk/see my buff partner. Stress was pretty high for us with our messy house, him leaving, the kids, and figuring out our home situaton ( when to list it on the rental market). was nice to have this weekend to see/talk to him for a little bit longer.

My spirits are good. Just have a butt-load of cleaning to do...but looking at it as a good thing. Only thing is...I DON'T LIKE TO CLEAN! ;o) I miss Sean and hate that he's not here since I hate to be the lone adult in the home. I always look forward to the adult interaction after a full day of refereeing/mediating my four human & canine blessings. I also have a total peace of mind when Sean's home since I hate being home alone at night...I'm always paranoid of what I'd do in a(nother) situation should someone enter/break in the house and how to protect the kids and myself. Jax is doing a great job with being protective. That big arse bark of his is enough to make Sean & I pee in our pants...and it's not even directed towards us. Plus, he's almost 100 he's a pretty big deal. ;o) Jax gives me plenty of comfort knowing that he's an awesome deterrent...and can attack if needed. *whew*

Anyhoo...I stress as I write since there's so much to do.



Want to make $10?

So, since becoming a mom, it just SO much easier to shop online. I don't have to worry about potty breaks, diapers, snacks, naps, breakdowns (theirs & Daddy's/Mommy's), etc. So, I found this site called it pays you for shopping online. Oh to my ears and helps to lessen the guilt when I know I'll be getting some money back for having made that super duper huge purchase online...;o) get checks quarterly based on how much you've earned in your account. You do get $ for referring friends too. If you don't earn the minimum amount needed for the biggie since it rolls over. I've gotten two checks so far...a huge one thanks in part to holiday shopping and sales...the other not so huge because I had to lasso my wallet shut. ;o)

So, I strongly encourage you to sign up. Right now till June 30, you get $10 credited to your account instead of the usual $5. have to use this link and use my email address:!!

Have fun!


Almost a decade!

I just dyed my hair from a box and cheated on my stylist (Ngoc from PR@Partners in Mazza) for the first time in almost 10 years!!!!! Yeah, I'm blogging about something trivial but I had to admit my infidelity. I still am trying to hold off on cutting my hair until I get back up to DC seeing how the last time I entrusted my hair to someone (before Ngoc) I ended up with a mullet. Asian Americans are not meant to rock mullets...especially during the first semester their college freshman year. After the square that was my hair grew out (I had to lob off the rat end of the mullet), I found Ngoc. Needless to say, that is why I have never cheated on my stylist ever since.


Happy Father's Day!!!

Happy Father's Day to my baby, my dad, my grandfather, my brothers, cousin, etc.!! Today kinda sucks because 1) Sean's not here because he has to stand duty (24 hrs. on the boat) and 2) my dad's not here. We celebrated, sorta, yesterday with Sean...AFTER he got off of work. Basically, it was just a day of relaxation for him since he's been working so darn much and getting only a few hours of sleep a night. So, he got a nap in with the kids while I cooked up a feast for him (churrasco, lemon quinoa, grilled asparagus, & RICE). Today, he's working and we'll see him tomorrow evening. The darn photo album I made for him is coming in tomorrow too (instead of LAST WEEK...arghh)...I guess it actually turned out to be ok timing since tomorrow will be Father's Day part deux. I need to make my sweet potato stuff that's Sean's favorite and a fresh fruit tart for dessert tomorrow. Should I use my leftover chimichurri sauce to marinate chicken breasts? Hmmmm...anyhoo, I feel so bad for him because he's just been so exhausted!!! Poor guy.

Today is also bittersweet since, even though I have surrogate dads (Uncle Dan, Daddy Yuan, & Daddy Naik), I still miss my dad. It's been 9.5 years without him and even though it's a bit easier now, there are definitely times like this that missing him hurts a lot more. I also think what a crummy daughter I was the last few years of his life during his battle with alcoholism. It's hard not to regret how I felt and how I treated him but at the same time, it's all a learning experience. Anyhoo...losing my dad and others made a huge impact on my's definitely too short to take people for granted. Life is definitely too precious and you never know when you will lose someone. I only wish that he would've gotten to meet my kids (all four of them...human & canine)...and Sean as well. is a good day to reflect how blessed I was to grow up with the father I did...despite the alcoholism (which never made him an angry or violent drunk...EVER), was an amazing person and I learned a lot from him. He definitely taught me many important lessons...both directly and indirectly. I am also blessed to have such an amazing partner who is such a great parent. I know Kaia and Jaron have lots to learn from him too.

Happy Father's Day, Fathers!


Let's see if I'll keep this up...

I used to have a Xanga site but outgrew my name (old AOL sn and way too old to be using it), so I no longer blog there. Anyhoo...this'll just be a mess of thoughts, ramblings, occasional recipes, etc. Alright...on to boring you!! ;o)