Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Money and relationships

Some married couples adhere to the "what's mine is yours" method of handling their finances while others keep separate accounts and reimburse each other for shared expenses.

Morgan and I recently made the decision join our bank accounts so that we have access to each other's money.

Is it just me, or is this a scary move?

Giving someone access to my hard-earned, not to mention scarce, income is freaking me out. It's not because I think he's going to run off with it. There's really nothing to run off with. I guess I'm nervous because this change symbolizes we've reached a new point in our relationship. It's another step in the process of becoming partners.

I guess scared isn't the right word, then. Excited? Anxious?

How do you and your significant other handle finances? Any advice for a newbie?


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Wedding. The sequel.

It's a bit early to be stressing this the way that I am right now, but plans for my second wedding are already getting confusing and frustrating.

Let me back up and explain a little first. Morgan and I were married in Feb. 2007 in Las Vegas. It was a fun, fast adventure, brought on by a rapidly-approaching deployment date.

Though I'm glad we made it official then, I want the real deal now. The dress, flowers, reception and honeymoon. Spring 2009 is pretty much monopolized by our friends Travis and Frank who are marrying their sweethearts, Magda and Lauren, in May and June.

I don't want to sweat through my gown so a summer 2009 wedding is off. Fall in New England is perfect. September is better than October because there's less rain. I chose the 19th for reasons of site availability. Well, it turns out the 19th is the second day of Rosh Hashana! (Yummy side note)

Those of you who know me know I'm not a religious person, but my aunt and uncle are. They would prefer I not have the wedding on the 19th, but there's not much I can do. Every other weekend in September is taken! All of this just to pick a date? I knew there was a reason I procrastinated doing this for so long.


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Walk this way

Though Morgan went through Ranger School a few years ago (in 2005 I believe), I still remember some of the funny and icky stories he brought home with him.

There's the one when he and some guys were marching through the forest at night, so sleep deprived they were like the living dead. Morgan said he stepped out of formation at some point, veered off the path and ended up waist-deep in a mud hole before he realized he was sleep walking. He had to call the guys to fish him out of the muck.

Then there were the Florida swamp stories. Alligators, venomous snakes, squishy, unstable ground, freezing cold water. Why would anyone ever want to do that? I find myself saying, almost daily, I could never be in the Army no matter how bad-ass I think I am.

Apparently, these chicks are pretty bad-ass too.

Would you ever subject yourself to this?

One more thing I'd like to draw to your attention about the Ranger Training Brigade (RTB) wife swamp walk story. This struck me as kind of odd and annoying:

Master Sgt. Jose Marengo said the Rangers enjoy watching the wives shoot, but the event serves another purpose — it gives the wive’s a greater understanding of their husbands’ jobs.

“Instructors are often out there 36 hours straight in those conditions,” he said. “Maybe their (wives) will be more understanding when an instructor stays up all night and he’s tired on Saturday when the wife is looking forward to a full day.”

Did they really organize this adventure so RTB wives would stop nagging their husbands? Maybe I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure these women know the hardships their men face and I would hope these guys appreciate the sacrifices their wives make every day so they can be out in the swamp for 36 hours training future Rangers. Everyone's pitching in there.

Am I wrong?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Infantrymen were once referred to as "Doughboys." See why below.

After a nice three-day weekend, I'm back to blogging.

Yesterday was wicked busy, but let me start first with what's going on tonight.

I'm covering a homecoming ceremony for about 80 soldiers with the Headquarters and Headquarters Company of the 13th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion at about 10 p.m. on Fort Benning.

The Army calls these occasions "redeployments," which I just hate. It's confusing to readers. It makes it seem like they are going back overseas, doesn't it? No, they are coming home.

Anyway, here's something I wrote recently about the Family Readiness Group's (FRG) preparations for their loved one's homecoming.

Also, yesterday I checked out the first day of the Infantry Warfighting Conference held at the Columbus Convention and Trade Center. I got up close and personal with some RPGs, anti-tank weaponry, state of the art surveillance equipment and robots that make Johnny 5 look like a Rumba. Later that evening I had the privilege of interviewing the two recipients of the annual Doughboy award as well as past recipients, H. Ross Perot and Sgt. Maj. Basil Plumley. Here's that story.

Learn more about the possible origins of the term Doughboy here.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Twitter madness

Twitter is a service that allows anyone with a cell phone to text up to the minute tid-bits of information from an event and post them online.

The Ledger recently asked a couple of local people headed to the DNC and RNC to twitter for us from there. It worked really well. I'm sure one day soon you'll see our court reporter, Alan Riquelmy, twittering updates from some murder trial. These are all very good uses of the service, in my opinion.

The following is an example of an event you'd probably NOT want to Twitter from.

Thanks, Jeff, for sharing this crazy, unfathomable, INconceivable story/blog post with me.



Someone has beef with Chipotle!

Sonn-dog and I will fight anyone who insults 'potle! (Just kidding...but it is good stuff).

How many of you have ever eaten there?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Deployment blues

Sorry for my absence from the blog. I have been trying to figure out a new schedule at work.

Here's some cheery news for you. National Suicide Prevention Week began began Sunday.

Did you know suicides among active-duty soldiers this year is on pace to surpass the record rate set in 2007.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Married in mid-air

Last weekend my cousin, Ashley, got married...

at Burning Man...

while skydiving.

She and her new husband look so happy. Send them some love!!!


To the Fallen Records

Hey home slices. My BFF Jess thought this would make some cool bloggage.

I'm going to contact the guy who started the company, Sean Gilfillan, next week for an interview. I'll let you know if it ends up in the paper. It could just be a super special LilyWrites exclusive! Yipee!

Anywho, I think the concept of creating a record label featuring solely military musicians is cool, but I guess the business isn't doing so hot.

What do you think about that concept? Remember, Johnny Cash and Elvis were both in the service.

Happy Friday!


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Lookey lookey

The Dave is famous!

Thanks Andrea. Welcome to the blogosphere.


Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Sexual assault

As in civilian society, sexual assaults within the military run far more rampant than reports indicate.

That's because victims of sexual assault within the ranks are hesitant to come forward for fear the incident will appear on their records.

A 2004 investigation conducted by the Government Accountability Office found that 52 percent of service members who had been sexually assaulted over the preceding 12 months had not reported the assaults, according to a story in the Army Times. The report was released July 31.

What is Fort Benning doing to prevent and respond to reported sexual assaults? What is the post doing to encourage victims to report? Do company commanders receive special training on how to handle such incidences? I e-mailed post spokeswoman Elsie Jackson this morning to ask these questions.

Stay tuned.