Tuesday, November 4, 2008

John, Helicopters, & Gratitude Day 2

Yesterday in my Gratitude List I mentioned John. I'll probably be talking about him a lot so I thought I would introduce him a little bit!

Jason's first assignment was at Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas (he still jokes that we might not be together today if his first assignment had been to North Dakota, ha ha!). John was also stationed at Nellis and as soon as they met they were two peas in a pod. They spent so much time together riding dirt bikes and driving Jason's truck and/or John's Cruiser... or working on one or other of their vehicles or motorcycles that they'd managed to damage somehow during all their play. I could never tell which they actually had more fun doing--driving in the desert or fixing things! :) They spent countless hours dreaming up all kinds of things they'd love to engineer and build... I guess that's what happens when you take two nature-loving, motorcycle-driving, grease-monkey engineers and put them together. :)

When we moved from Las Vegas to Ohio we had the crazy idea to pack up our house ourselves rather than having the military contract a moving company to do it (which stemmed directly from the fact I'd dated a mover in college and heard dozens of stories of what they did with people's belongings!). We never would have been able to do it without John and his wife Kristy; Kristy single-handedly packed up our kitchen. Did I mention she was very seven months pregnant at the time? The woman is a saint, I swear. They came over every day several days in a row and helped us get everything packed up and loaded into the truck; it was amazing of them! That "We could never, ever do enough to pay you back" kind of amazing.

We've stayed in touch with them over the years and visited a couple times. John got out of the Air Force [AF] several years ago and he and Kristy (and their expanding family!) settled in Virginia. When John heard Jason was getting out of the AF last fall he immediately started petitioning for us to join him in Virginia. He got Jason an interview and this job is a perfect fit for both John and Jason; they get to do a lot of the things they dreamed about back in Vegas! The only twist was that two weeks after we arrived and Jason started work, John left for training for the Marine Corps! (He transferred from AF Reserve to MC Reserve and he had to go through all of their training.) He's been gone for the entire year we've been here. He finally finished up and started work again yesterday! Hooray!

John and Kristy live about two hours away, next door to Kristy's parents and now John's sister and brother-in-law, too. So before we moved here John usually stayed on base two or three nights per week to save a little ton of commuting, and now he'll be staying with us in the guestroom here at Casa di Yates! I'm planning and plotting all kinds of projects for him to do around the house to earn his keep, and he's already proven very useful in the kitchen, ha ha! :) So now when I'm referring to John a lot you'll know of whom I speak. :)


I mentioned yesterday that the election was getting to me, so for the past several days I haven't been watching any news. None. So when I was pulling out of my driveway yesterday to make a quick trip to the grocery store, imagine my surprise when my neighbor warned me about traffic because.... get this... Barack Obama was giving his final rally, that all-important last-minute rally on the final night before the polls open in the morning?... oh yes... in my freakin' town. People were parking on the next street and walking to the rally, that's how close it was to my house. But I am not really a rally sort of person. Which is to say, I really, really, really, really don't like crowds of excited, screaming people. And it was John's first night here and I didn't think it would be polite to up and leave. And I already knew for whom I was voting so I didn't really need to be rallied. And I was ready for bed at 8 p.m. and the rally didn't start until around 10. And did I mention that I reeeeeeally don't like crowds?

I know that not going makes me the lamest person in America; I'm fine with that. :P But even though I wasn't going, I still thought it was really cool that there was a super-important rally in my town. Until about 9:45 when I was sleeping and a news chopper settled in directly over my friggin' bedroom for the 11:00 news, and then I had a slightly harder time digging it. Which brings me to my Gratitude Journey Day 2 List! :)


I am thankful (for):

  1. My right to vote!!!
  2. Earplugs and my foresight in buying a huge bag of them and storing them in an easily-findable-even-out-of-a-dead-sleep location. :)
  3. This blog post from my friend Jen.
  4. Sara Groves' album All Right Here.
  5. That I just this very moment (when I did the links above) found out that Sara has a new Christmas album!!! Can't wait to buy it!!!
  6. That I can very easily scrape together $12.99 to buy this album.
  7. That I know that having $12.99 to buy an album is a blessing that I shouldn't take for granted (especially in this economy when so many people are suffering) because guess what? It's not "granted."
  8. The red-orange-yellow-green "tunnels" I drove through today on my way to Kerry's to pick up my camera. (My Grandma Lois calls it a "green tunnel" when you drive through an area where the trees on both sides of the road meet at the top, making a tunnel. :))
  9. All my memories from childhood of my Grandma Lois and Grandpa Fred; the bedbug sheets, the "ice hole!"s, the snow in July, the beauty shop, the secret family words, and so many more.
  10. That Grandma Lois and Grandpa Fred are still around for me to make more memories with.
  11. Crash Hot Potatoes.
  12. That Jilliene told me about this exercise from her lovely mentor and that I seized the moment to decide to make a public commitment to it.
  13. That an ever-growing list of people is jumping on board (Jilliene, Stella, Heather, Jen, Sooz, Aimee, and maybe YOU! :)). [You don't have to have a blog, you just have to make some sort of effort to be thankful in some sort of way more than normal. We're pretty loosey-goosey on the rules, really!]
  14. Blogger Dashboard which allows me to "follow" the blogs I like and then it automatically updates me when they post new blogs. Schweeeeeeet!
  15. CHEESE. Any kind, as long as it's dairy. "Cheese makes everything better." :)
  16. The four orders for necklaces I'm delivering on Thursday, yay!
  17. That soon there will be no more political ads on television, radio, newspapers, magazines, lawns....
  18. Cuddling with Jason last night and having our legs jumbled together while we both read books in bed.
  19. That this list has been so stinkin' easy to come up with that it's hard to stop at 20!
  20. That no matter what, we will have someone other than Bush in the White House. SOON. HOOOOOOOOOOOORAY!!!!!!!!!!


kellie said...

I think I read sometime yesterday that Obama was going to be in Manassas... I was going to ask if you knew that and if you were going. I can't believe the rally was within walking distance from your house and you opted for sleep! I would have LOVED to go to the rally... too bad I wasn't visiting. Lucky for you I wasn't, and you didn't have to go and deal with the crowd :)

Aimee said...

i would have slept too i think...big crowds are not my very, very favorite thing.

and right back at you----i amso glad you are my friend

Jilliene Designs said...

Thank you so much for including my name on your list 2 x. I am honored to be a part of your world and the goodness that makes it so INCREDIBLE!!!