Cammo Style Love: July 2012

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Sunday Social Week 8!

Well, I can say with absolutely certainity that Sunday has really become my favorite blogging day.  This week has been one of the roughest in a long time, and I just haven't felt like putting anything out there, and didn't think anything would have been good to put out there.  But I feel like I'm almost over the hump (fingers crossed) and writing up a Sunday Social couldn't hurt.  Thanks Ashley and Neely for another great link up. Make sure to check out those girls.\


Some quick housekeeping around here.  I've got a new blog design that will be unveiled soon and I'm super excited about it.  In fact, I'm tingling with excitement!  I was also just nominated for a Top Military Mom Blog by Circle of Moms.  First time I've been nominated so I'm super excited.  If you think I'm pretty awesome I'd love the vote.  Or check out the other amazing blogs nominated because there are a lot.  There's a voting button on the left under the blog button.  Thanks so much.  And I'm not afraid to beg so, I'd super de duper with a cherry on top, love for you to think me awesome enough to follow.  And I will definitely return the favor!  Now onto the fun.


Sunday Social
 
 
I don't know how it could be more fun then last week because we spent the day discussing my fav love - PURSES!!  But, this week's link-up is pretty darn awesome.  And after filling it out I have to say that I am one lucky girl.
1. What is your dream job?

If I was totally honest and didn't reply MOM (because really it was my dream to one day afford the luxury of being a stay at home mom and not be destitude.  Thank you to my fab hubby for making that dream come true when we were so young).....I would have to reply Parole/Probation Sentence Recommendation.  It is probably the best mix-up of all the Criminal Justice jobs.  You get to do a lot of investigating, be involved in the court system and the prison system.  It something one day I'd really hope to do.


Me and my BFF and fellow CJ major with my first son in 2006

2. If you won the lottery and didn't need to work, how would you spend your time?

I would spend my time doing much of the same that I am now, although I think I would volunteer more because I could afford a babysitter more often then I can now.  I would definitely also spend more time traveling and visiting anything and everything historical that we have to wait, plan and budget for now.


Me and the hubbs visting a Slave Cemetary in West Virginia in 2005

3. When You were a kid what did you want to be?

I'm pretty sure it was dancer/ballerina. And I've got to say that I did pretty good in that category too..partially anyway.  I was able to dance en Pointe for years, be a part of a Youth Ballet Company, dancing in Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland and Sleeping Beauty.  I even spent a couple years teaching and received awards for my choreography.  So,even though I may not have made it to the big times, I accomplished all that before I was 20.


Me at 17


Me at 4

4. What kind of career advice would you give someone just starting out in your field?

for Mom I would say - don't listen to the drama and don't get caught up in comparisons. You are valuable, you are contributing to society...and no matter how many people think you might be lazy, and just laying around eating bon bons and baking pies all day - we SAHM's know the truth

for dancer I would say, stick with your passion and make it work for you.  I so desired the ability to make it,but the dance world doesn't care if you have the perfect feet and legs if you don't also have the perfect size boobs - which is none.  So find a way to make it happen for you.  Choreography was my way.

for Criminal Justice - work hard, do the right thing and be fair and just.

5. What are your biggest pet peeves in life, blogging and work?

Drama, drama drama! You can't escape it becaue there is someone that loves it, everywhere!  Surround yourself with amazing and wonderful people and you will be sure to either avoid it, or recover from it much faster.


6. What are your biggest fears?

Well one of them is really what do I do when all the kids are in school?  How do I break back in the "world" so to speak?  Sigh....I dunno yet.  Failing my children, losing my husband and most heights ;)


Me and the hubbs in 2002


My first two munchkins in 2008


SEE YA NEXT WEEK!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Military - an inhospitable environment?

In a sort of funny way, one might look at the title of this post and there might be elbow jabbing amongst wives as we say to ourselves, "of course it is, they make it really hard."  It's true if you think about it.  We, as the family, are just pawns  in the game, a game we aren't in control of.  For all intents and purposes it is inhospitable.  It's not an easy thing.  For the most part we go and do as we're told.  We have to be spunky, and creative and patient beyond belief.  As your average run of the mill spouse, I've been through a lot.  It's a path I've chosen for myself and nothing really has gone exactly as planned. 

         One of my dear friends is the wife of a Wounded Warrior.  It's an invisible wound, but a wound none the less.  She's been through even more than I have.  Wives are typically not part of the process, at least in her case.  It took entirely too long before she was included.  She's not the one that signed the papers or raised her hand..I get it. Half the time it seems that those that did raise their hands don't even want to be a part of the process, and if they do they cant' be properly heard because of the set up.  I can not begin to tell you how many times I've heard fear expressed over careers if they were to become involved in the process.  The process is broken.  A fabulous MilSpouse, Kristle at Forget the Dog, Not the Baby, does some amazing work with wounded vets and issues of TBI and PTS.  I personally think she's pretty darn amazing.  She knows a lot more about this stuff then I do, but even someone like me with my limited experience in this department knows that what is going on here is wrong.  There are so many amazing bloggers out there that bring things like this to the forefront.  Wife, Widow of a Wounded Marine, who also recently started a Widows for Wounded program, writes candidly about her experiences.  After Blast Warrior Wife talks plainly about her experience as the wife of a physically wounded soldier.


         There's been some articles that I've come across lately that always brought the phrase "inhospitable environment" to mind.  Last week, on LATimes.com there was an article and sexual assaults in the military.  Not an new phenomenon by any stretch of the imagination, which makes it even more sad.  Different then what Warriors with injuries from war have experienced, but with similar symptoms and traumas.  Something else similar - this monster that tells them to buck up, fly right and be a Soldier - Airmen, Marine or what have you.  This fear of compromising their livelihood, their careers, their reputations.  This organization with such legacy, that protects our freedoms, keeps us safe - this is the same place where people feel unsafe, unprotected.  I've been through lots of psychology classes, working for my degree -  and it just amazes me that it didn't dawn on someone sooner that happy and healthy soldiers, make better soldiers.  I realize change takes time.  We've seen it before, the integration of other races, women and other changes that have taken place - they all take time.  I get this too.  I just wish this change would have started sooner.  I wonder though what it was like back in the day, something I'd really like to do research on.  We haven't made enough changes, but at the same time so much has changed.  Technology and medical advances had changed so much.  Assistance programs like Wounded Warriors and so many others had made things progress so far.  I wonder what it must have been like for my grandfathers.  One of them was a top turret gunner in the Army Air Corp during WWII.  I know he experienced things far beyond my understandings.  Deployments were longer and harder.  No communications, no phone calls, no fancy chow halls or places to do laundry.  I can't imagine things being any easier then they are now.  People got hurt, PTS, TBI...without all the things we DO have today.  I can't imagine.  I know we are lucky.  But is it enough?

         As cheesy as it sounds, one step in front of the other.  Banding together to make change.  We need brave men and women to keep stepping forward.  We need husbands and wives to keep stepping forward.  We need PEOPLE  to keep stepping forward.  I think many Military Spouses will admit that they thought about what they would do, how they would react, if something happened to their soldier.  But why wait until then to talk about it?  I may not have direct experience, but I think the problem is that too many people wait because they feel like they have no room to talk because they haven't experienced it.  People in the situation have a hard time finding that voice.  Not everyone is as driven and loud as some of those ladies I've had the pleasure of reading in the blogsophere.  My friend that I spoke of earlier, felt lost, isolated and usure of where to go.  No friends, no family, and no support.

        So I guess this post is part awareness, part sharing, part challenge.  How can you, whoever you are, your average joe, military spouse, child, sister, brother, cousin, whatever...how can you help?  How can we change things?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Military Monday - Own It!

marine parents


Well it's time for the Military Monday blog hop.  I always feel compelled to come up with something fabulous, LOL, but seriously, who can get a jump on a Monday when you're trying to have fun on the weekend.   The hubbs is heading out for several weeks this week, so that's kind of a bummer.  And he's working all the way up to it so Saturday and Sunday were it.  Brian will turn six while he is gone and then his parents come for a visit.  So it will be quite crazy.  In the mean time I will be trying to get the house together for their arrival, which includes trying to finish my first major DIY project.  Another "seriously" goes off in my brain!

What you're staring at is table legs that have been repaired and are wrapped in plastic, a table - not attached to the legs - leaning up against the wall, and already freshly painted and reupholstered chairs waiting for the table and legs to join them and be all freshly painted.


As I was thinking of something fabulous to write  I thought to myself, why not just write about this?  It may not be super fab, or extremely profound in any way, but it's life.  It's nothing spectacular or life altering.  I read so many very fab and extremely profound blogs, at least to me.  Usually I get all up in my head and get all "super girly" (not to be mistaken for Super Girl) and wonder why in the heck am I writing about this stupid stuff when there is so much more profound things going on?  Yeah, I just used the word profound like three times in two sentences.  But.....then I think,  "I look for blogs of people going through what I'm going through."  The normal day to day of the military life. 


         When we moved here we bought a ton of furniture - bunk bed, three bookshelves, couch, coffee table - I put them all together by myself.  Now, I know plenty of mom's do this, and I'm not trying to toot my own horn or anything; but at least I can get a pat on the back.  It's just life.  It's my life.  I chose it and I'm living it.  I encourage all moms that live this life to own it man!!  Most importantly though, don't get caught up in comparisons.  So many women in general get caught up in comparisons.  There's the parenting comparison,e working mom/SAHM comparison, the single mom comparison.  For me personally I've experienced\the branch comparison, the deployment comparison, the Guard/Reserve vs Active Duty comparison and the civilian vs military comparison.  ALL are dangerous in my opinion.  When we start comparing who has it harder, the 6 month or the 12 month deployment, that when we are missing the point.  I mean, I've had easy and hard times.  Does the mom with three kids have a harder time then the brand new wife that spent three weeks with her husband before he was shipped off?  People have said to me, "I don't know how you do it?  Being a military spouse is the hardest thing ever."  Now, while I appreciate the sentiment and when someone spouts of about "what are military spouses complaining about, it's not hard," I'm the first to want to snap back at them.  What about police officer or firefighter's spouses.  While my husband might face dangerous situations for month-long periods, police man face potentially deadly situations every day!  A traffic stop can turn into something more in the blink of an eye.


So don't get caught up in comparisons because it never leads anywhere good, have compassion for whatever situation your friends might be going through - weather it be two weeks of training which become a nightmare because you have an into everything two year old, a weekend training where the mom has to put together a bunk bed because her five year old just can't wait another second, a six month deployment, or just a regular work day that he can't miss even though you are as sick as a dog and there's a mountain of laundry piled up.  This is our life, we have to own it.  We live it so why not live it the best way you know how?  Doesn't mean you have to wallow in it, nor should you hide your feelings because you know someone out there is dealing with something worse than you; there's always something worse. 



























Sunday, July 22, 2012

Sunday Social - My obsession



Sunday Social
I'm such a purse girl! So I was super excited to have discovered that this week's Sunday Social is all about Purses! Whooohooo!!!!

If you're a new follower from this hop I'm so excited to have you here, I hope you follow me, and I will of course return the favor and try to get as many listed on the hop as possible.  Thanks so much again for the fab ladies at Ashely's Carnival Ride and A Complete Waste of Make-Up for coming up with this fabulous hop!

1. What's your favorite handbag you've ever owned - 

I've got to say my favorite was my Dooney and Bourke Tassle Tote.  Sigh, I miss that purse.  They eventually discontinued it because the creases on the edges of the purse kept fraying (poor thought process on the part of the designer in my opinion.  They should have made it leather on the bottom).  As a result, after having it repaired several times, they ended up having me trade it in.  I should have kept it...and I kick myself because I loved it.  sigh.  But I still have some fav Dooney's in my collection.






2. What is the dream bag you lust over?

Well really what girl wouldn't want the classic Louis Speedy...me that's who.  I would also love a bigger Dooney...I'm kind of a big purse girl and it would be nice with three kids, but none of the current patterns are my style.


3. What are some daily essentials you keep in your purse?

Mostly I make sure to have some lip gloss and lipstick, my nail file (to keep from biting my nails), my burt's bee's cuticle rub (does amazing tricks to keep you from biting your nails), a mirror, my camera, and a pad of paper to write stuff down (thanks hubby).

4. What's in your purse (With Pictures)?

well what om purse wouldn't be complete without some kiddie snacks and a couple toys.  wallet, wristlet, and checkbook (cuz I'm 100), color lipgloss, chapstick, lipstick with holder and mirror, iphone and earbuds, oil blotters (that don't ruin my make-up - ridiculous humidity), camera is a must and benedryl because of the even more ridiculous bugs!  LOL!  but you caught me on a good and not super messy purse day!

My purse was a gift from my mama...love it.  It's one of my summer purses that I pull out.  I love it mostly cuz its pink.







have fun and link up!!!!

Friday, July 20, 2012

I'm an old-fashioned kinda gal.....

before your read my dribble, I need to give some props to a fellow old fashioned gal I had the privilage of meeting at this year's mil-blogging conference.  She's blogs over at Diamonds, Dogtags and Diapers and I pretty much think she's the most awesome girl and as sarcastic as I could only hope to be.  She really pushed me over the edge in writing this.  I have written a post like this before a billion years ago, but the thoughts were triggered again and I discovered some amazing posts by her on a similar topic.  I love her!!







         I really could write this post, with that title, about a million things. Ever since I was a little girl that's how it's been. My mom is pretty much the reason I'm the way I am, and her mom before her. Talking to adults was always easy for me, but my parents always made me. Not in the evil sense of the word, but in the "this is what you do when you're a human". I went to visit my great grandma in the nursing home and performed for all the people there. I continued doing that well into my young adult hood. By the time I was 10 or 11 I knew all the words to Bon Jovi and Nelson songs and would sing them with my mom and her best friend. I watched Black and White movies and knew all about Bette Davis, Jimmy Stewart and Lucille Ball when she was in movies before I Love Lucy. I wrote thank you cards, and sent out invitations to parties. Phone numbers were memorized and I mailed letters to pen pals.



There was so much that was wonderful about growing up in the 80s and 90s. It was pretty rockin' if you ask me. It wasn't perfect, but what is? I've always been an old soul and I like that about me. As I grew up I continued along that old soul path - developing a love for antique hunting, vintage books and clothes, and I  picked up some other amazing old soul type friends and an old soul hubby.








These are my antique shopping, party planning, vintage movie watching, old school chicas - and my mommy and me on New Year's Eve.  We appreciate things like power movies that had Jimmy Stewart and Cary Grant in them at the same time,  an amazing thrift store find, RSVPs and simple things like that.  Whenever I get annoyed about things they are who I call..and I've been on the receiving end of one of those conversations from several of these ladies a couple times.

I guess the point of this is are we losing this these days?  Are we to busy?  Are we too selfish?  When I got married, sure it was about me.  No one could argue that.  But I didn't spend the time thinking all about me.  The hubbs and I included so many personal touches that were not only important to us, but meaningful to others.  We took the time to acknowledge others when it came to that special day and not ourselves.  We didn't rush to it just to please us, we remembered we had parents and loved ones.  It might have been quicker and easier for us to have gotten hitched real quick at tech school or something, but not only did we not want to rob ourselves of that experience, we thought about our parents who deserved to see the culmination of all their hardwork.  We thought about all our friends and family members, and the people that led us in our path to where we are - boy scout leaders, Sunday School teachers and people like that.  When I throw parties for my kids they write thank you notes.  Sure they are only 3 and 5 and can't write a ton or at all, but we still do them.  Ami colors on hers.  This year Brian wrote his name on all of them and on some of them copied the word Thank You.  I will always make them do this because I hope one day, like me, they will do them on their own and then teach their kids, and be the crazy dorky lady (or guy) that isn't "with it".  I'm pretty sure that's what my mom hoped for when she was teaching me to write thank you cards.





that's my cute mom in the black dress on the right


I know I can't change the world, or force people to do things a certain way.  But I also know that I won't ever stop the way that I do things.  Every time I log onto Facebook and see some invitation to an important life event, or a big announcement that I'm learning about for the first time when I should have been hearing it in a different way, I thank my lucky stars that I was born just ahead of the total Facebook generation...although there are plenty of people my age that have jumped on board the total technology train.  Sometimes I feel like I've been backed into a corner...I feel all mad and then I feel like some stand up comedian saying something stupid like, "I'm mad because they're happy!"  oh the irony!  But my sweet husband has helped me learn that I can't expect people to just make some stupid exception for me...and I know that.  Being completely unreasonable isn't a trait I wish to have and for people to think about me.  Oh, lets not send Rheanna on a tirade again.  But really I feel like the argument is so much bigger than that.  Why do I even have something to throw a fit about?  It should probably also be clarified that I'm not some crazy against all announcements of the technological variety.  I should hope to shout (what's up that's my mom's voice) that my friends don't think I'm some crazy unreasonable fool that insists upon some sort of preferential treatment...crazy Rheanna and her aversion to technology.  No, its not like that.  A cute fun text message, an email...its just like a phonecall.  I'm not a witch with a b!  It's the greater issue though...it's the lack of human connection..and heaven knows I feel a greater human connection with some people over a text message then with most over facebook...so I hope you get my basic meaning.

These things are becoming lost arts and that's just freaking sad!  No more dinner parties, no more RSVPs, no more birth announcements, no more pen pals....and before you know it, no more MAIL, no more phone calls talking on and on about nothing, no more please and thank you, no more manners.  The last couple might be a little overboard, but you get what I'm saying....

Anyone else in this between technology generation totally understand what I'm saying?!  someone humor me!!
Blog Hops Everyday Friday Blog Hop

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Military Spotlight - Military Town Advisor

This past May I had the awesome experience of attending the Military Blogging Conference in Arlington.  It was amazing and I met so many wonderful people.  One of the absolutely wonderful people I met was the absolutely darling Cameron from Military Town Advisor.  Seriously, she is sweet and darling and has come up with an amazing and cool website.  Something I wish I had known about before we started looking to move.  I'm thankful we were lucky and ended up in a wonderful neighborhood, but seriously, how do you know for sure when you are going anywhere?  Areas vary from street to street, and you never can tell whats up until you are there, or you send someone to wander the streets of the area you move into.  Real Estate people can't really ever tell you the down and dirty and unless you are moving on base, the area around the base might be a crap shoot.  Thankfully now there is Military Town Advisor, your one stop shop for all the information you need in your neighborhood.  I recently just submitted my own review of the last neighborhood we moved out of and it was super easy.  I will continue to submit reviews concerning neighborhoods that I've lived in.  So, without further adieu, let me introduce you to Cameron, a fellow Mil-Spouse.



How I came up with the idea of MilitaryTownAdvisor.com:
As newlyweds, my husband and I were stationed in Kingsville, Texas. I was new to military life and the only information I knew was that we were either going to a base on the East or the West Coast. I immediately began researching both coasts and attempting to gather as much information as possible. I quickly learned that the majority of information that can be found on the internet about towns and areas are tourist guides and statistics about the demographics of the area. Or I would go on Facebook and ask other military families and they always suggested areas that were good for their lifestyle not areas that fit my family's needs.   I ended up discouraged and resigned to the fact that I could not go any further in my research until we received our orders.
When we got our orders and were headed to Virginia Beach we spent seven days looking for a place to live. We contacted a realtor and she started showing us homes.  She took us all over Hampton Roads and didn't really listen to our needs.  This took up a lot of time and we wanted to buy a house all in a week’s time frame. Needless to say, we were extremely nervous about picking a house in the right area. Luckily we found a house in a great area, close to the base, with good school districts; however, this was not the outcome for many of our fellow military families. Some of our new friends chose homes far from base where it may have been more cost effective, but they ended up regretting being so far from the activities that are centered around the base. Also, others chose neighborhoods that were close to the base but did not end up feeling safe in those areas, especially during deployments. As each new family told me their storythe concept of MilitaryTownAdvisor.com was born. I knew that military families were the best resource for other military families. I understand the uncertainty and fear that can come with a quick move to a new part of the country, the lack of readily available information, and the need for each of us to be able to learn from each others’ missteps and successes.
How this site is unique: First, all of MilitaryTownAdvisor's content is written by other military families in the form of reviews. It's like TripAdvisor for military towns!  The reviews focus on neighborhoods, areas of towns, and schools.  Military families are different than other home buyers because they aren't looking to purchase their 'dream' home. They want their families in safe, family friendly, social neighborhoods that are in good school districts and within a decent commute to base.   Military families are willing to give up 'dream home' extras for a good neighborhood. The site is a way for other military families to share their knowledge about where to live.
 
How to use the site: When you get your new orders, go to MilitaryTownAdvisor.com and search for reviews near your base. Read the reviews and make note of neighborhoods that fit your family's lifestyle and needs. Then contact a realtor or go to sites like MilitaryByOwner.com and start looking for homes in those neighborhoods.
 
How we met: My husband and I met at Texas A&M our senior year. We shared the same major and started dating. After school was out, we both moved to Houston and my husband began working for his family and I worked at a bank.  After experiencing the 'real' world and being unsatisfied, my husband decided to fly for the Navy. We married and moved to Kingsville, Texas for his advanced training in jet aviation.  We both are Texans and have enjoyed moving around with the Navy, but hope to move back to Texas one day where we can have grandparents close by to help raise our kids.





About me: I graduated from Texas A&M University with a BA in Finance. I played Division 1 Soccer for Texas A&M all 4 years, in addition to being in the Pi Beta Phi sorority. I worked for a Comerica Bank in Houston for 3 years, then was a 5th Grade Math Teacher in South Texas (while hubby was in flight training), then once we were stationed in VA Bch, I have worked as a Pharmaceutical Sales Rep for GlaxoSmithKline for the past 6 years. I launched MilitaryTownAdvisor.com 6 months ago in Jan 2012 while having and infant and a 3 year old.

Upcoming: I am the 'Resource of the Week" on Amy Wife Network Talk Radio http://www.armywifenetwork.com/ Listen to the show at 8pm (i go on about 9pm) Monday July 16th, 2012!!
Current Promotion: For the month of July, we are donating $1 for every review left on the website to Operation Homefront!


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

A Wedding Picture...Canvas love

It's hard to believe that in August it will be eight years since I said I do to my man.  It's incredible how time flies when you're having fun, when you're having kids, and when life is busy.  Remembering days like that gets harder and harder as time goes on.  Thankfully I'm still holding strong to those memories.  There was awhile though, where looking at those pictures were difficult.  I suppose that is probably one of the reasons why i never got any to hang in the house, or put in a frame on the mantel. It's a ridiculously long story and one that I probably won't talk about; but the point is I don't have anything hanging around my house.  Canvas has always been something I'd admired, but it was always so expensive.  Pinterest has some pretty cool ways to create canvas prints, but I have a feeling that would stay on the boards for quite awhile and would never get done.  When the chance to check out Easy Canvas fell into my lap I jumped at it.  And where else could I start but the wedding.



Not only was this option easier than doing it myself, it was affordable and I could be sure that I would have a professional looking product that reflected that amazing pictures of that day.  It turned out to be a rather easy venture with a self-explanatory process and quite affordable.  The first picture/pose I tried to upload didn't work for the Canvas.  It couldn't really be edited properly to get the look that I wanted for the size that I wanted.  But once I chose an image that fit well within the size of canvas that I wanted we were good to go.  The customer service with Easy Canvas was wonderful.  I say they are the place to go  for Custom Photos on Canvas.  I was so pleased with how it turned out.  The colors were gorgeous.  And everything I loved about this picture in digital form shone through in the canvas version.

But the awesomeness doesn't stop there.  For all my mailitary peeps out there EasyCanvas.com is also BuildASign!  They have an absolutely wonderful program where they provide free Welcome Home banners for our returning troops.  What a blessing for our military families.  I know that if I was in need of this it would be a wonderful blessing.  One less thing that I would have to worry about, think about, and try to find the time to do with three little ones running around and all the other things that a spouse is doing to prepare for the return of their soldier.

Make sure to visit EasyCanvasPrints.com and BuildASign.com to get more information about either program.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Rhe's Bookshelf #7

It's time for another installment of Miss Rhe's Bookshelf.  Reading is like second nature to and I have always loved reading ever since I was little.  It was such a relief to be able to finally read for fun after graduating college and I haven't looked back since.  When I started blogging I stumbled upon several opportunities to start doing book reviews.  Beyond thrilled is probably an understatement, but beyond thrilled it is.  Happily I have two wonderful books to share with you today, a religious commentary and a military kids book.  Two different categories of books, but both are books I really loved.

The Searchers: A Quest for Faith in the The Valley of Doubt, by Joseph Loconte



Historian and journalist Joseph Loconte examines the role of religion in contemporary society against the ancient dialogue overheard on the road to Emmaus in Luke's gospel. Every human heart has a natural longing for "home," and these witnesses to the life and death of Jesus of Nazareth serve as a rich example of that universal yearning. Along the way, Loconte scrutinizes not only the challenges posed by popular skeptics, but also those created by counterfeit religion.

Whether Christian or Muslim, priestly sex scandals or Islamic "honor killings," Loconte takes a sober look at the failings of those who claim God is on their side. The author never loses sight, however, of the profound influence that an authentic relationship with Jesus Christ can have on individuals and society. Ultimately, readers will see how the human desire for meaning, purpose, and love can lead us to our true home. There are still reasons to believe, reasons embedded in a remarkable conversation on the road to Emmaus.


What I thought:

I wasn't really sure what to expect when I got this book.  I had only read a brief summery, shorter than the one above, and I didn't glance at any other reviews before I read it for myself.  Mr. Loconte was able to take a brief exchange on a dusty road and turn it into a book full of relevant information that is applied to what is going on today.  I think many people find that religion can be old and stuffy, and not applicable to their lives today.  What can I learn from this that would mean anything to me?  I've had the pleasure of reading two other books, that you can find the reviews to on my list, that have done a great job intertwining religion and relevant events.  This is definitely a star in that grouping.  It is the first one, however, that has been about a specific story in the bible. The other ones were more religiously influenced and this one I view as more of a commentary.  I think Christians and non-Christians, or religious of any kind would find this book really interesting and it would answer a lot of questions.  And if nothing else, answer questions and inspire conversation.  Mr. Loconte's background in history provided such information that was detailed and complex.  He knows so much!! I didn't know what to expect but I was quite pleased with this book.

I received this book as a reviewer for Booksneeze.  As a reviewer for Booksneeze I received a book to aid in my review but I was not compensated for a positive review.  The thoughts and opinions stated here are my own, take them or leave them.


Zooey and Her Soldier, by Andrea Kelly 

 Zooey’s best friend, Doug, is in The National Guard. Sometimes he has to go away for a little while. When he’s gone, Zooey misses him a lot. She can’t wait for him to get back! But Zooey’s about to discover something – something that will make the wait much, much easier!
Zooey and Her Soldier is a great book for children dealing with a parent or family member in the Armed Forces, (or even one who has to travel a lot!). As tough as those moments are for parents, they are often even harder on the children, especially those that are still too young to understand the entire concept. Zooey is a positive and relatable character for young kids, who has a helpful idea on how to feel closer to the ones you love, even while they are far away!

Ideal for bedtime stories and new readers – an enjoyable book for young and old alike!






What I thought:



An adorable book that you should add to the collection of a military child.  We have several books in our collection and this is one.  It is a sweet and simple book; and it would be really good for a child that is just beginning to read.  With darling illustrations and adorable kitty as the main character, I think most little children would really like this book.  Zooey and Her Soldier is perfect for ages 3 or 4 and below.  It is short and sweet, and could keep the attention of my daughter.  She responded to the story and thought Zooey was cute.  My son listened but was not quite as interested in my daughter.  They both were able to relate Zooey being sad and missing her soldier (Like Daddy) when he was gone and were very excited when he returned home to them.  I personally appreciated the sweet simplicity of this book.  It is really aimed directly at relating to children in the desire for them to completely be able to understand and relate.  It would have been a really good tool for me to use in talking with my children the first time my husband went away.


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I received a copy of this book in cooperation with the Author.  I was given a book to aid in my review but was not compensated for a positive review.  The reviews and opinions stated here are my own...and my kids' of course.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Sunday Social, week 6

It's days like this that I'm thankful for awesome bloggy goodness like the Sunday Social and Ashley over at Ashley's Carnival Ride. Sometimes a good blogging rut can be broken with such awesomeness.





Sunday Social
This week's round-up is all about Vacations! I'm excited to see what everyone else has to say about this. Now on to the good stuff. 1. What is the best trip you've ever been on? Well, second to my honeymoon (at a time where we could afford a digital camera - yes it was that long ago) was a recent trip the hubby and I took to the bay area. I was pregnant with our third and feeling cruddy, but we managed to plan ourselves a trip to the Ronald Regan Library and also the San Francisco. It was something on our bucket list and we wanted to get it in before we made our way back east. The Library was amazing and if you ever get the chance to go there, DO IT!





  
2. What is your best idea for a girls weekend trip?

Well I would say for sure San Fran!  That has been the destination of choice for many girls trips with my mama!

The last time we went, my mom, me and my aunt went on a Victorian Home Walking tour.  So amazing!!  If you are ever San Fran I would do it.  It's pretty cool.

 Mrs. Doubtfire house
 Where Robin Williams Lives
 A cool house and our even cooler Tour Guide
 Me and my Aunt
My mom and my aunt

3. What is your best idea for a couples trip?

Well I have to say anywhere I get to go with my hubby is pretty awesome.  He's a busy guy and we don't get the chance to do it very often.  We had a day date a couple weeks ago and that sent me over the moon!  Surprisingly my best idea of a couples trip is camping!  We recently did this.  We went beach camping by ourselves and it was the most fun.  No technology, no huge crowds, it was fun.  Plus I'm a succor for the beach, so even camping at it is amazing.






 We also celebrated the hubby's 30th birthday!


 4. What is the best vacation on the cheap?

Well after having moved to the DC area I've discovered that this is an awesome place for a vacation on the cheap!  Once you get yourself here almost everything else is free.  All the museums are free practically, and as long as you can walk or pay the cheap fare for the metro you can see so much stuff just walking around the city. Living here has been an amazing experience.  And being able to see all the stuff we've seen just for the price of the metro or gas has been pretty amazing.  

We recently took the metro to see the Cherry Blossoms and also drove 10 minutes to get to Arlington National Cemetary.




5. What is the place you want to visit most?

Definitely England.  My mom actually lived there for a couple years in the 70s.  The hubbs has gotten to go (cuz I'm an awesome wifey) and I want my passport stamped!  So much history and culture, and lots of Jane Austen places in the vicinity!


 The amazing Pemberly...gonna hunt me down Colin Firth..LOL
Mr. Collins Rectory

6. What are your vacation necessities.

Well, the hubbs is Mr. Packer man and he is beyond organized.  The definition of it, I'm convinced, if you looked it up in the dictionary.  Things that come to my mind are comfy shoes, a dressy outfit, comfy pants, a big purse so you don't look like a tourist with a backpack ;)  Make sure to have maps or gps, and your camera!!!

thanks ladies for another fabulous Sunday Social!  I'm already excited about next week.  Its all about my favorite thing.  Purses!!!!!!

thanks for stopping by Cammo Style Love.  Make sure to check to the right for some awesome military related posts and some of my most recent reviews and giveaways!  If you're looking for a good book check out the bookshelf up top.

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