I had a great childhood... I really did. It was packed with adventure and intrigue... and I am sure there were days that my mother truly wondering if I was going to survive, or rather, if she was going to survive to see me become an adult.

I was a scrappy little kid who my mother would tell me that I smelled "like the great outdoors" and I thought that was a compliment.

You all know that I have an older sister (who is so much better than me that I am thankful everyday that I have her on my side) and a younger sister (who is also better than me, but sometimes I convince her to visit the bad side with me and we have to go to confession after our time together) but what you may not know is that I also have an older brother.

His name was Sean and he passed away when we were kids. He was great and not a day goes by that I do not think of him or wish that he was here, telling me I am being inappropriate or telling me that my hair looks stupid this way.

I have missed having an older brother to watch out for me, to tell me not to do something and when I did do something, to be there to clean it up and protect me.

Don't get me wrong-I know for a fact that my brother is watching out for me. How else would you explain the mere fact that I am still here and not in jail, or worse, at the top of that water tower that my college friends all wanted to climb after a night of partying.
Friend A: "Hey-look at the water tower-when did they put that up?"
Friend B: "That has always been there... I wonder what they use it for."
Me: "I bet you can go swimming in there."
Friend A: "Hey look! There is a ladder up to the top."
Friend B (running toward the tower): "I bet you can see the boys college across town from up there!"
Friend A (running past friend B): "I wonder if I will be able to see that jerk Ned Smiley."
Friend B: "Why would you want to see him?"
Friend A: "No reason" (sidenote... friend A and Ned are now married)
Me: "Last one up is a skunked beer!"

This was all fine and great until we got to the part where the ladder starts to go outward because we all know what a water tower is shaped like and there is a point in which you have to actually climb up and out to get over the hump at the top. Now, I could have continued and eventually fallen to my death, but my brother was surely in Heaven looking down at me saying "What is wrong with you? Have you lost your mind? Get down idiot!"

And we did get down... but not without writing in pen "June wuz here" for all to see... because ball point pen can be seen for miles right? At least that is what a drunk would think.

Anyway... I eventually met and fell in love with a boy from my hometown, a boy that was actually in my brother's kindergarten class so how cool is it that Carl knew him? So cool. So a few years ago it was time for Carl's High School reunion.

He went to a different high school than me, so I didn't think I would know anyone there (and because he is 4 years older than me so why would I know such old people?) But the first night of the reunion weekend they had a "mixer" at a favorite hometown eating establishment (read:bar) and I was sitting listening to Carl and his twin brother talk to people about the good ol' days, the days when Carl was a drummer in a rock band and had long hair that he used to perm and wore spandex pants and tied bandannas around this wrists and ankles (this is all before my time... he had cleaned up his act before we met-but he is still a rock star at heart).

I was scanning the room when I saw someone that looked very familiar but I could not place him. I started to walk toward him because I was sure I knew him and I just needed to focus in order for my brain to remember. By the time I got to him I was pretty sure I knew exactly who he was.

It was Tony Tazarial, the little boy that was my brother's best friend and lived across the street from us when we were little. They moved away shortly after Sean passed away and I had never again see him-I was probably 4 the last time I saw him and he was 8-but I knew without a doubt that this was him.

Now, this next part of the story is my favorite story of all time. It is the story that I think back to and smile. It is the story that my mom likes me to retell to her, and it is the story that makes me know that my brother is close and that no one has forgotten who he was...

Tony and I looked at each other and I smiled. "Are you Tony Tazarial?"
He looked at me and nodded "Yeah... you are Sean's little sister right?"

Those were the best words that anyone could have ever uttered to me and I beamed and nodded. That is exactly who I am...

He went on to ask me how my parents were doing and we talked about what he had been doing and his parents and eventually ended the conversation with him saying "Say hello to your mom and dad for me." and walked away.

I realized that I am not the only one that carries my brother with me-my siblings and my parents are not the only ones that remember him. He touched other people-good people, who remember.

And that is just awesome.


That Was Then... This Is Now... When Is Tomorrow?

Around Christmas time, Stupid Fat Hobbit put this picture from 2007 on his blog. It is of Hobbit and his wife and Carl and I at a Christmas party (this was the first time I met Hobbit and I got drunk off of the wine that Marva's husband was buying and we instantly became friends.) You can see a larger version of this photog over at his blog... but I am good with keeping it small here.

Awful I know. Look at my hair! You know what I did? I got pregnant and cut my long hair off, which is usual for me when my hormones are nuts. I will literally call up any hairdresser in the phone book and get an appointment for that day and have them cut off my hair... and the next day I cry and start that long process of growing it back again.

Also, look at my body! I had just had a baby 7 months prior and I literally cringe when I think back to that dark dark time. With my other babies I was able to drop the weight rather quickly-as in, I would walk out of the hospital in my regular jeans... but little Mary did a number on me and I couldn't get rid of the weight.

So when Hobbit posted this pic I wanted to crawl back into bed, but then I thought "Who the hell reads Hobbit besides me? No one will see this."

Until the other day when I received an email from someone saying "Hi, I just was on Stupid Fat Hobbit's blog and holy crap you look different!" (some people are just so cruel) and then I went to the refrigerator and proceeded to get disgustingly drunk and make prank phone calls to my Cousin Steve asking if "Hugh Jass" lived there or if "Eura Snotball" was home.

So I decided to go back to my archives and find the post that I had written about that night and post it with this photo so you would know all of the effort that went into "trying" to look like a human being.

Mistress June On Duty!
Last weekend my husband and I went to a Christmas party. I am not proud, and I fully admit that since the birth of Mary Claire I have basically sat around eating and drinking until I have turned into a chubby mommy. Sometimes chubby looks good on people, on me, well it looks just plain fat.

Since this party was a "semi-formal" event, I had to find a dress that actually fit me. I refused to buy a new dress in the size that I am in now for the same reason that I refuse to buy any new pants. I do not plan on being this size forever and I do believe that one day I will wake up and the sense will be knocked back into me and I will set down the cookies and cakes (don't ask me to set down the beer though-that will never happen my friends.) and get back on the road to looking smokin' hot and all.

Today... not so smokin' hot. Not even a little luke warm hot. Today I look like a chubby woman wearing pants a size too small. I fully admit that. If you don't like it, look away.

Anyway, as I was rummaging through my closet I found a simple black dress in a size 8. I considered for a moment slathering my body up with baby oil before attempting to put it on, but I didn't want it to stain.

Instead I headed to the store to buy me a pair of "Spanks." Do you know how much those suckers are? Too much... so I bought a pair of the Hanes knock offs. I may be fat, but I am still money conscious.

That night after my shower and my hair drama, it was time to get dressed. I knew it was time to get dressed because my husband was fully dressed and hovering around me asking me things like "Are you getting close to done?" or "Can you give me a rough estimate as to when you think you may possibly be ready." When he starts to hover, my mood will quickly go from a pleasant one to a bad one. They based the character on the Exorcist movie on my bad moods. So now I was fat, had bad hair, and in a bad mood. Never attempt to put make up on when you are in a bad mood... I think I may have ended up looking a little like Cruella De Vil.

Sooo, it was now time to strap some lycra to my body and squeeze my size 10 hips into a size 8 dress... and my size GAZILLION nursing boobs into a size 8 dress. Success seemed impossible.

When I pulled the Hanes lycra out of the envelope, I thought it was a joke. They looked like they would fit my 4 year old and not me. How in the world was I supposed to put these things on? There I was, naked, sweating, and huffing and puffing as I pulled and tugged the lycra up my body. I turned to look in the mirror and saw that the lycra was forcing all of the fat from my thighs and butt up... I looked like Santa Clause trying to fit down a chimney. As most of you know, putting pantyhose on is not easy... escalate that torture by 1000 and you will get an idea as to what it is like to get this lycra contraption on.

As I was mid-way through my fat pulling, lycra tugging ordeal, I look up to see my husband watching me. The look on his face was one of horror and defeat. I think he may have been fooling himself about my size as well. All of those fantasies where I look like the 18 year old girl with the size 4 hips and the amazing ta-tas were shattered all because he could not leave me the hell alone when I am getting dressed. I don't feel bad though, and he will eventually stop staring into space and shuttering from time to time... I hope.

Eventually I did it. I was lycra'd up from mid thigh to breast and I was SKINNY! Not as skinny as if I would actually get my rear in gear and work a little, but skinny enough to get that size 8 dress on. Sure, my boobs were spilling out over the top, but they had to-they had no where to go! My thighs were actually so skinny that they did not rub against each other when I walked! My tummy was flat and my butt was small. I had won the victory over the fat! I had tricked it into being sucked back into my body for an evening.

When I took the Lycra off later that evening, it shot across the room and hit my husband square in the face. He woke up screaming that night... something about being eaten by a fat monster. I am not sure what that means, but with a little counseling he should be fine.

Now... here is a picture that was taken almost two weeks ago. It has only taken me 20 MONTHS to get back to normal. (Lord above isn't that man handsome. I just love when he wears blue... and look at his smile, just look at it! He has great hands too... so strong.) What was I talking about? Oh yeah... what women think of themselves.

But I am still not happy. Oh, don't look at me and say "June! Why are you not happy?" I am not happy because women in general are never happy with themselves. Why is this? Why do we torture ourselves? Why do we look in the mirror and think that we need to change? I bet that if I asked all of you that "if you could change one thing, what would it be?" Everyone would have an answer ranging from "I hate my butt" to "My hair is too limp." to "Have you seen my boobs? Well neither have I!"
And what about when we are feeling good about ourselves and then we see another woman and instantly feel insecure because she is skinnier or has the exact color hair that we wish we could have or she has flawless skin and long eyelashes? Why do we torture ourselves? WHY?
When I was in college, my roommate used to look at herself in the mirror every morning as say "I'm tall, I'm thin, and I lose pounds daily for no apparent reason." I need to call her up and see how that is working for her.
For today, lets all love ourselves. Let's all look in the mirror and say "Hell yeah I look good!" Because we do... WE REALLY DO!

*Update* For all of you saying "Whatever!" You have to remember that I had more lycra on my body than a cirque du soleil performer in a Celine Dion freak show for that Christmas party. When I took it off it was quite literally like a explosion of cellulite. Not pretty... not pretty at all. But this also proves my point that we are never happy with ourselves and we are, somedays, our own worst enemies.


Swooning Over A Regular Joe...

The other day someone told me that women tend to "swoon" over obscure men (like movie stars, professional athletes, and the occasional man in uniform) whereas men tend to "swoon" over... well all women, obscure or the neighbor down the street, which solidified my thoughts that men are just weird and women are normal, but what do I know? I am just a woman who swoons over obscure men.

Anyway, this statement got me thinking... it is really time for another Swoon-worthy man!

But I decided to do something different. I went to the Board of Trustees at Cleaverland and asked them to please think of something new. My mother thought I needed to put more ads for boxed wine on here. Aunt Barb wanted more chocolate references. Aunt Judi wanted me to do a post on her fuzzy eyes. Cousin Steve wanted to start doing his own posts on here... but we all know where that would lead don't we? So I looked to the last board member (me) and I decided that I would start a "Regular Joe" showcase... or swooncase, however you want to look at it.

You all know who "Regular Joe" is don't you? He is my husband and your husband. The unsung heroes of our lives. The men that put up with us and always find their way home each evening after work. The guy that kills the spiders in the bathroom, opens lids and jars for us, parallel parks the van for us... that guy (thanks Hobbit for reminding me of all the things men do for their wives.)

So I have scoured the Internet for the first Regular Joe winner. I tried to get my husband to do it, but he said it he was too busy... something about planes and missions and blah blah blah...

Ladies of the Six-Pack, I would like to introduce you to Emily's husband ... our very first "Regular Joe" who is worthy of a swoon or two:

Warren and his family have a great blog about their lives in West Virginia. From what I can tell, he is the kind of guy that doesn't mind pushing his sleeves up and working the land. He has more interests than the economic stimulus plan and a person would be blind if they did not see how much he loves his kids and wife-which in my book makes him more swoonworthy than Brian Urlacher (you have no idea how hard that was for me to write.) I first asked Warren to ask his wife if he could do this, and then we sat down (figuratively) and talked. Well, I quickly found out that Warren loves to talk. I mean, they say that women are big talkers who need to say at least 25,000 words in a day, but Warren here has all women beat because he basically spoke a novel about himself. Seriously, if I just print off this post and send it to a publisher, it will be on the shelves of Barnes and Noble with the title He Who Talks To Bees... and Talks... and Talks... and Talks.

Let me give you a little background on Warren. He is a bee farmer who also does technical stuff. He has big biceps and a bald head. He loves his wife and he loves to can just about any vegetable out there--even some Romanesco Broccoli!

Here is his interview:

JC: Hey Warren-thanks for doing this. I have no idea what I am going to ask you and I have no idea how this post will go, but I promise to make you look good. I just need you to think like a complete and total man when you answer these questions-so go out and chop some wood, go hunting, change the oil in the truck, get stung by a bee, and then toss your wife over your shoulder and drag her into your bedroom before you even think of answering any of these questions. Okay? Are you ready... let's see what we come up with shall we?

W: Cool! I drank a fifth of whiskey this morning for breakfast so I should be ready... oh yeah, and I ate a box of nails too!

Occupation: Software Engineer/Love God

How long have you lived in WV? 3 years. It's a great place but it helps if you have either 3 legs or if one leg is longer than the other. Everything is on a hillside here. (Does anyone else think that the "3rd leg" line is something you would hear in a West Virginia bar? I thought so.)

Any good childhood stories we need to know about? There are a few...I used to pick on my younger brother all the time. We fought like brother do. Anyhow, he had enough of my crap one day. Somehow e talked me into tying a rope around my belt loops. Seizing the opportunity, he threw the line over a hanger and hoisted me up in the air. He tied it off and left me hanging. Eventually my belt loops broke and I escaped, but I've been into bondage ever since...uh...never mind. Just kidding. (Warren also told me stories about fireworks, setting his dad's car on fire, working at a bait shop, and other times in his life when he has fought death and won, but this is only a 30 minute program so I had to edit.)

Are you an environmentalist? Sort of...I am not fanatic to the point of blowing up Hummers and oil refineries but I think that we can and should do better about conserving resources, recycling, having a lower impact, etc. Aside from one's belief in global warming, it just makes economic sense to use less and to spend less and keep the environment cleaner. Regardless of whether our planet is getting warmer, I prefer clean air and skinny dipping in the river without fear of growing extra parts or losing the parts I have! (I didn't pay one bit of attention to anything he just said until he mentioned skinny dipping... )

Tell me about your kids: Isaac is now 9. He was born 2 months early under extreme duress. You can read all about it on my blog (search for preemie). To get you up to speed, he nearly died and we were told he would have a host of problems. Here we are 9 years later and his only problem is that he has some hearing loss (we were prepared for deafness from some meds he received). I can't explain how watching that helpless little baby, so sick, yet so tough, changed me forever. I can't think of it without crying. Dang it, I am crying right now. (Awww... that right there is what won him this prestigious position) Anyhow, he has always been so special and I love him so much. I think I learned early on how important he is to me. I know you innately love your kids, but I think I got a helping of "even deeper love" by almost losing him.


My daughter Abigail, on the other hand, came right on time and is a joy in a different way. I always figured that people create the differences between girls and boys. I see how wrong I was. Girls are just different. Still, I love to play with her and see how she nurtures her ponies (My Little Ponies are a favorite), and the cat, and her brother. In some sort of basic way, I think I get her joy in that. Now don't get me wrong, she loves a great burp or a good splash in the mud. She's a puzzle I guess. She loves her pink cowgirl boots and will use them to kick her brother squarely in the shins when he doesn't take her nurturing the right way! (Atta girl Abigail!)

How many ears of corn would you say you have shucked in your lifetime? Hundreds probably. My cousin and uncle (in PA where I grew up) raised cows, field corn and sweet corn. We used to eat it a lot in the summer. My mom cooked out over an open wood fire for most of our suppers in the summer. We ate corn cooked in the coals a lot. I sort of dig messing with our corn because I have a gigantic knife I use to cut the stalks. I get the "Banana song" in my head (Come mister tally man tally me bananas) and get to work! (What? Giant Knife?)

Tell me about being a bee keeper...I sort of got into it on accident. I was bored at work on day and started searching for random things that came to mind. I saw there was a beekeeping club near my home in TN so I decided to go see what a beehive looked like. That was going to be the end of my interest in bees. Anyhow, one beekeeper invited me to his place to look at his bees and he ended up sending me home with a hive in my truck and I was hooked. I love it now. I really pay attention to the seasons and enjoy doing something old-timer. There aren't too many beekeepers under the age of 70 so I sort of enjoy that aspect of it. I guess I also like the danger part. People think I am all brave and tough (oh, I am ...don't doubt that!). It can be dangerous to keep bees if you don't know what you are doing or act like a fool, but bees mostly don't want to sting people. If we handle them correctly and mostly leave them alone, they couldn't care less about us. Some of my hives are right in my yard and we do stuff around them all the time. We typically have no problems at all. Harvesting honey is a lot of fun too. We usually wait for the absolute hottest day in August (not on purpose, it just works out that way) to collect the honey. It's hot, heavy work (big biceps help...see below). You'd think being all slathered up in honey would be fun...and, oh yes, it can be, but not with thousands of angry insects with chips on their shoulders around. Anyhow, it's the only time that the whole family gets involved in beekeeping. It is much easier to process the honey when everyone helps. We get a couple hundred pounds of honey a year. Most we sell but we use a lot too. We never make money at beekeeping but we don't usually lose too much at it either. (And you thought you would never learn anything useful on this blog!)

How many times have you been stung? I am sure I have been stung hundreds of times. I know on a few occasions I have been stung over 20 times at a given episode. I seem to have this thing with females. I go in and tell them how they ought to arrange things, and they get all nasty and make me sleep on the couch for a week...wait, we're talking about bees, yes, the female bees are the ones that sting and they sometimes get testy when I mess with their digs. Typically, I don't get stung at all when I work them. The stings usually come when I drop a frame by accident (or the worst time was when I was removing a nest from the walls of a house). (I love when a man gets stung. He just looks at the bee and flicks it off of him as if it was nothing. Real men get stung.)

Do you have any tattoos? No...I think it would be cool but I can't figure out what I'd want. I thought about my favorite stuff...you know Mt Dew, bees, my cats...but then, I don't want someone else's "can" or "stinger" or...well, anyhow, I can't think of anything I want on me forever. I sort of dig small tattoos on people though...maybe someday. (You could get one of a cat and a bee playing cards drinking mt. dew?)

Is your wife smarter than you? We both know our IQs and we are pretty closely matched on paper. But that's really only half of the story. Of course, she is much smarter than me on some stuff and I am much smarter than her on others. For instance, I know exactly how many sausages I can fit in the frying pan. I have good spatial ability. She gets money and people much better than I do. She has managed our money for our entire married life. Some guys would hate that but I sort of like not having any responsibility...wait, that sounds just like a stereotypical guy. We are such misunderstood creatures. Anyhow, she's just better at tons of stuff than I am. We divide up stuff differently to suit our abilities. (You know he had a long answer but the basic gist of it was "Yes, my wife is smarter than me, and I am so lucky.)

What size is your shoe? I used to be a size 10...but I seem to have shrunk to a size 9.5 lately. I don't know if the shrinkage is due to aging, or the cold temps, or what...I hope my...uh...feet remain average size! (How good of a dancer are you? That is what really matters.)

Any dreams for your children? I have no specific dreams, but like most parents, I suppose, I want them to be good people, I want them to marry good people and to be happy in doing what they enjoy. I also dream of them hitting the Powerball lottery and taking care of me in my old age!

How much of your land do you farm/garden? We live in the city so have little planted at the house. We grow mostly herbs and fruits in the city. We have blueberries, blackberries and apples growing. I am working on chickens for this spring at the house, but that's a work in progress. We also work nearby at my wife's grandparents' land where we tend a 4000 or so square foot garden that they've let us have. We keep bees at our place, at their place, and at 2 other locations in the nearby area.How many vegetables/fruits have you canned? We can everything we can can. We make a salsa that I like to call "@ss in the tub" salsa. We make pizza sauce, pickles of various sorts, green beans...a lot of green beans, peppers, jellies and sauces for ice cream/pancakes/wife's bellybutton. We dehydrate and freeze a lot of stuff too...squash, peppers, tomatoes...about everything we can manage. It saves us a bunch of money since we don't count our hours on the job - it's our hobby. I like staying up late with the wife while we can stuff. We get a chance to chat and dream about stuff. There's something about being up late that does that to me. Just laying in bed doesn't do it....I fall asleep. But put me on task late at night and I'll spill the beans on anything. That's pretty goofy I guess! (Look at that... nothing sexier than a man with some earth rubbed in his wounds. What? That isn't what you all were thinking too?)

Any hobbies we would like to know about? Aside from beekeeping, I also am trying to learn to play violin and I tinker with stained glass. I suck at both though so I don't know if you could call them hobbies or just ways I give away money. Anyhow, I also like tinkering with stuff...not necessarily anything in particular. I just get wild hairs and have to run with them (see violin and stained glass, above). I love to target shoot also but the kids are a little young to make a family affair out of it. I used to hunt but I am sort of over shivering in the cold. I remember deer hunting in the freezing cold and snow in PA one time. A deer walked 10 feet from me and stopped. I already had my rifle up, but I didn't have the hammer pulled (I had a lever action 30-30 with me). My fingers were so frozen I couldn't pull the hammer back or run the lever to get a bullet in the chamber. I was so mad I wanted to throw my rifle at the deer in hopes of getting him that way. Anyhow, now I target shoot. (So you are a beekeeping, violin playing, stained glass making hunter turned target shooter?)

Who taught you how to knit? No one in my family knits so I had to consult the ultimate authority on all things important...the Internet. You tube is great for knitting though I am not too hot even still. I like the looms for knitting. Needle knitting is probably not for me. I have a 3x5 inch square that needs finished as the sweater it was to become is so far off...3x5 is a nice pot holder size, right? Anyhow, the looms are pretty easy. I don't knit a lot but I do dig wearing my homemade hat. I am working on one for my daughter now too. (I once looked up knitting on the Internet but it sent me to a site that I would not recommend to anyone-it was knitting for adults only. You do not want to know what kind of "warmer" they suggested as your first project.)

How big are your biceps? I haven't measured in awhile but the last time they were just under 17 inches...the implants have held up rather nicely! (Nice... That is all I can say. Nice.)

Do you know how to use a chainsaw? Absolutely! I shave with it every morning! Actually, I have been using a chain saw for a long time. I grew up in the woods in NW PA and we heated with wood. My brother and I learned to drive when we were 10 so we could get a truck out of the woods if my Dad got hurt cutting trees. Anyhow, we started splitting wood before we had hair on our chins...in fact, I am pretty sure that the 2 shots of whiskey to keep us warm as well as all of the wood splitting are what put hair on my chest. (Chest hair, chainsaws and splitting wood... you are one sweet talker.)

Have you ever gotten in a fist fight? Twice, and both times were a long time ago. I won of course. Being a benevolent victor, I offered the olive branch to the kids and gave them back their lunch money. (Fighting for a girls honor I am sure.)

What is the most important thing to you? Definitely my family...followed closely by my M*A*S*H dvd collection. Really, my family is most important to me. I work like everyone else but I basically refuse to work over, go on long trips, etc because I want to get home and hang with the family. The kids continue to get more and more interesting and I really enjoy doing stuff with them. My wife has gotten slightly less interesting but she's still pretty cool to do stuff with. Anyhow, we spend a lot of quality time together. We haven't had cable tv in 13 years, mainly because we don't want to be a tv-family. No dig on people who do watch tv, it just isn't for us. Does that sound stupid? Anyhow, we really like doing other things together. Soon, I will get my son to start chopping wood too! He needs hair on his chest! (No wonder you knit-you don't watch TV!)

Do you shave your head or are you just naturally bald and beautiful? I am naturally bald and beautiful though I do a little touch up work on the sides every day. It makes me more aerodynamic. That's critical for my spy work that I do on the side. Did I mention that I also train with Michael Phelps? (It makes you more aerodynamic? That right there is enough for Swoon all by itself.)

Any special traits we need to know about? Hmm...you got bald and beautiful...you got average shoe size...

Can you ask your wife that same question about you please?

This is Warren's wife - I thought up some special traits that are particular to Warren.

He has a third nipple - not the whole thing, just the very end. His grandfather evidently had the same deal. It's pretty small so not grotesque or anything. It was quite a discovery for me though!

The fool let me pierce his ear when we were dating in college. It took a half an hour and I used a needle from my sewing kit. He lied and said it didn't hurt (I basically laid on him to do it so I think he rather enjoyed that part) so I kept on trying until it went through. It was really crooked though so I had to do it all over again. He only wears it now to embarrass me.

He has a freakish thing for stray cats. He can't stand to see them unfed. It's pretty sweet really. We now have 2 indoor cats and about 10 outdoor-only cats that we feed

He can't curl his tongue. Who can't curl their tongue?! (I think I would be GREAT friends with you Emily! and by the way, my husband can't curl his tongue either. What kind of childhood could they have had?)

Do you carry a hammer and a shovel around with you everywhere you go? No...but I never go far without a pocket knife. One never knows when there is a dragon to slay or a wrapper that needs removed! (Ha!)

Who is your hero? My grandpa...he was a tinkerer. He refused to grow old. He has birthdays every year (he'll be 95 this spring), but he never got old. He remained curious and excited about the small things in life...leaves changing, a good cup of coffee, a good garage cuss. He's kind and funny and alive! It's pretty much how I want to be as I tack on the birthdays. (He is on hook for next month's Regular Joe.)

What do you love the most about your wife? I love that she gets me. I am into trying all sorts of stuff and she puts up with all of it. She keeps me on track but lets me run too (if that makes sense). She doesn't love that I have a quarter of a million bees 5 feet from our bedroom window, but she tolerates it. I am curious about so many things and she lets me explore. She reels me back in when I need it too. That sounds sort of like "it's all about me" but I think what I am trying to say is that she is my balance, my other half. I also love that she makes kick-@ss lasagna! (Saint! Your wife is a Saint)

What do you think of women in general? I dig women a lot...I don't mean that in a typical guy way (though I dig women that way too). My mom and grandma were both no-nonsense kinds of women so I have never viewed women as less important, less powerful, etc. None of that ever crossed my mind when I was growing up (either one of them would have clocked me for sure). Of course, I have heard and witnessed a lot of the junk that women put up with and I think it sucks. I know that I don't want my daughter to be treated differently just because she has different parts than a man (that's simplified of course, but, I think you know what I mean). Though, in some ways I do want her to be treated differently. I get disgusted with men who don't treat a woman with respect. I guess I see two sides of women...women in the workplace I view as equals. At my last job in Nashville (before moving to WV) I worked with 3 women in particular who were amazing computer programmers. They were logical, tough, smart...all that stuff that stereotypically keeps women out of, or oppressed in, computer fields. It was an excellent opportunity to solidify my understanding that women are equals at work. On the other hand, I want any guy that spends time with my daughter, to honor her and hold her in higher regard than "one of the guys". (Short answer: "Yes, Warren like wimin.")

What are you wearing right now? HA! I am getting ready for work so I have on khaki brown pants. Aside from jeans, all of my pants are khaki brown. I have 8 pairs. I never have to worry about whether my shirt will match or if my one brown belt will "work" with an outfit. I also only own brown shoes and black socks. Now, the fun part is, I am wearing a shirt that I got sometime in the mid 90s. It's still in great shape and my wife hates it so much...it's what keeps me going! (Oh get on with it! Tell us the truth... that you are wearing carpenter pants, work boots and a white tank top with a tool belt slung around your waist. Why do you tease?)

Okay... that is all I can think of. You don't have to answer anything that you don't want to... but remember, June Cleaver is a fun blog, so no pressure... but be witty for goodness sake! This is pretty cool...I am vain enough I guess to really enjoy this! (I would have never guessed)

All in good taste and good fun. The Six-Pack upholds the right to love men, but also complain about them. I have read your stuff for 6-8 months, so I get it...and I dig it!
Thanks for being such a good sport Warren!

You can find more of this Regular Joe that is completely swoon worthy over at



Step Aside Before You Get Trampled...

Do you like to shop? I don't, but I will when there is a sale and let me tell you... do I have a sale for you!

My friend Amy is closing her very adorable children's boutique in Occoquan, Virginia in the next couple of days.

Everything is on sale!


Check it out:


Tell her that June Cleaver sent you and she will take no more money off of your purchase!


I Read You... I Really Do!

I am sure I have mentioned the blogs that I recommend on my sidebar. Do you see the list? Just turn your head to the right and look down a little... right there... got it? Good.

It is not a very big list is it? Nope.

"Why not June? Don't you know how to read? Why aren't there more blogs on your sidebar for me to click on and be entertained? Do you not have many friends? What is up with THAT?"

Well, the reason why it is not very big is because I am very picky. I know-what a snob I am that I expect everyone on Al Gore's Internet to link to me but I am an itty bitty titty linker.

This is the way I roll... small. I can't help it. I am not an extrovert-honest.

It is small because these are the blogs that I do go over and visit. Some more than others, but basically I feel a connection to these blogs. They are my homies, my posse, my imaginary friends.

What does it take to get on the sidebar? Money.

No, not really... but you could try that route and see if it works.

Basically there is no rhyme or reason to my sidebar... they are mostly perverts and Catholics over there so I am just doing what Jesus would do.

Let me introduce them to you... including our two new links:

Abbey Roads-meet Terry. I just read him because I like his picture, which obviously isn't him... or maybe it is, I am not sure. Oh, and he is also wicked smart on just about everything. If I am ever President, or married to a President, Terry will be the Chairman of the Smart Committee. I promise.

Amy's Friend Jess- Meet Jess. Like Terry she is brand new to the sidebar. I found her because I was "browsing" my "followers" one day and saw her and clicked on her blog. She was talking about a friend of hers that owned a children's store in Virgina named Amy, and it turns out that I am Amy's friend too! In fact, I think Amy is great and she is funny so I figured that any friend of Amy's was a friend of mine so I read on and discovered that not only is Jess so funny that I laugh out loud ever time I click on her, but she is a great writer. She should write a book... and then get it published and tell me who her literary agent is so that I can get my book published simply because I know a published author. That is a good plan don't you think?

Brunette Lover... Gasp Don't click on this guy if you are a liberal or a woman... you will be offended, and that is why I like to read him. Don't click on him if children are in the room. Don't click on him if the DOG is in the room. If you do click on him make sure you have an appointment for confession directly after. Seriously.

Chi-Town Urban Mom - It is funny how people name their blogs, yet when I link to them I sometimes change their names. Anyway-this kid is great. I would love to be her neighbor. We would get arrested and our husbands would have to bail us out, which always makes for good blog fodder.

Elaine I started linking to Elaine after she gave me some of the most amazing information that a a person with OCD (me) would pee their pants over. She told me that the average woman does no less than 25 swipes with the mascara brush on each eyelash. Now, I don't know about you, but that kind of information causes me to start counting things... and ever since then I have counted the number of swipes I make with my mascara EVERY SINGLE DAY OF MY LIFE! She also said that she knows this information because her husband works for some big make up company so I link to her in hopes that she will eventually send me free make up. So far I have received zip.

Kasia I think Kasia was one of the first people to ever comment on my blog so she is like a friend I have had since elementary school. She knows (and remembers) everything about my family... which is a little creepy, but that is Okay, I know for a fact that her husband has dressed like a woman before (oh, he'll argue that it was a kilt, but whatever) so we are even.

Man With 1000 Children Seriously, he only has 11 with one in the oven... but who is counting. My priest made me start reading him a long time ago because I have this certain irritation for people who jog on the side of the road. I can't help myself, but when I see them I get an overwhelming urge to run them over with my van. When I confessed this to my priest he told me that I had to say 3 Hail Mary's and start reading Rob, who is an avid runner and runs at least a million miles in a week. True story.

Soliloquy I read her because she has a great body-that is about it. No... she is also hi-freakin-larious. Although I think she has me blocked from her comments because I have tried to tell her what I would do to get that $3500 from her husband that she needed, but she either did not like my suggestion or she was so offended that I have been black listed. If you only click on one of these links today-make it hers. You will be happy you did. And while you are there tell her to open her door to let me back in-I am probably hanging out with all the scumbags in the spam waiting room.

Stupid Fat HobbitWe all know Hobbit don't we? I don't know why I link to him... he is an ignorant slut. Oh relax... it is an inside joke. We actually know each other in person (I know, how weird is that?) and I once got him drunk at a party (playing beer pong) and he sometimes has this problem with people not "getting" his jokes... but I get Hobbit, I really do, so when he turned to another party goer and said "Jane you ignorant slut!" I understood the joke completely and laughed (reference SNL Dan Akroyd). Too bad the party goer he called an ignorant slut did not know what he was talking about and was probably offended... but we were drunk and playing pong so all was good with the world.

Sunny-My friend since I was 5 As it says in the title that I have supplied her with, I have known Sunny (or Kathleen as she likes to call herself) since we were 5 and our Dads drank beer together and our Moms were in the Altar-and-Rosary together. She is my oldest friend and part of who I am. We rode our bikes all over town and met many milestones together... like when Chris Cash tried to kiss her in the back of his garage and her mom was calling for her and I pretended like I had no idea where she was, or when we threw her brother's underpants on top of a lamp in his room on vacation and the entire upstairs started to smell like poo, or when we did our Calumet Press paper route together and tossed the papers on people's roofs and in the bushes so that we would just get done quicker. Yep-I love Sunny. She is a liberal... but Congress could learn a lesson from our friendship. We should run the country! Sunny can have California and I'll take the rest of the country. I kid Sunny... you know I am a kidder.

The Pioneer Woman Cooks The Pioneer Woman has no idea who the hell I am because she gets like 5 million comments a day and I am like a fart in the wind to her but I don't care. She is cool and I want to be part of the "in" clique so therefore I link to her so that other people think I am cool by association.

Threedonia-the magnificent 5 or 6... or maybe 7, I'm not sure how many of them there are anymore. I don't remember who these guys are. I know there is a great gal named Wankette that writes for them... but the rest is fuzzy. It is a boys club over there and they humor us ladies simply because they are hairy and smelly and we make them look good. Go check them out, they will welcome you in like the prodigal son and then start a fight with you when you least expect it and make fun of you every chance they get. It is a good time.

So there you have it... my imaginary friends. I am always looking for new friends-and it should be said that I have about 25 applications for friendship in my favorites that I visit, and of course, the 95 of you that have somehow stuck around and not said "This chick is stupid and she has saggy boobs, I am outa here!" I would link to you all if I could, but I like the sidebar to look neat and clean. I also like it to be personal-so until you get personal with me I can't put you up there (although one could argue that The Pioneer Woman has never gotten personal with me, but I explained that already-I want to be cool)

So that is an invitation... get personal, but don't take anything I say personally. Huh?

And Cousin Steve... if you had a blog I would link to you. Seriously. Dude.


And The Winner Is...

Random Integer Generator

Here are your random numbers:30

Timestamp: 2009-01-25 06:30:38 UTC


The Wannabe Redhead said...
"God Blessed the Broken Road" by Rascal Flatts is my pic for favorite song. There are so many! I'll be sure & let you know more of my picks as they pop into my head! Hope you're doing okay, JUNE!
January 23, 2009 10:34 AM

Very cool. That Rascal Flatts song is a favorite of mine (although I am not a huge country girl) but it was the song that my little sister and her hubby danced to at their wedding so it always makes me smile.

Just email my your mailing address Valerie and I'll send out your $20 iTunes card ASAP.

I have to say... you all have great taste in music. With this playlist, I highly recommend that you just minimize my blog for the rest of the day and let all of the songs play through-you'll enjoy it I guarantee.

I did have a few that I could not put on simply because they would make my ears bleed if I did. Sorry Alan, but I could not add Pink Floyd's "Several Species of Small Furry Animals Grooving Together in a Cave" because I don't think any of the Six-Packers want to trip out on acid today and go crazy. Plus-that is the worst song in the history of songs, right before William Hung.

I also could not add anything by Britney Spears or Taylor Swift. I tried... I really did, but I just could not do it without vomiting in my mouth each time I went to click the "add" button. Please forgive me.

There were also a few that I could not find-I think only four of the songs were completely obscure and not known to most people in the world... but that is Okay-groove to whatever makes you happy man.

I did add a few of my own:

Follow You Home by Nickleback-which in my opinion is the best song ever. I listen to it no less than 5 times a day. The drums are sick, the base is genius, the guitar is hot and Chad Kroeger's voice drives me crazy... simply crazy. Mercy. This song reminds me completely of Carl, because he is a rockstar like that and it sounds like a lot of our fights.

Shattered by O.A.R. This is a great song... another voice that I love, and again, it reminds me of Carl.

You'll Accomp'ny Me by Bob Seger. I like the way he just tells her that one day she'll be his. No questions.

Misunderstood by Robbie Williams. If you have not heard any of his songs then you really need to search him out. I discovered him when we were in the UK and totally fell in love with his cheeky attitude. I thought I met him once in a bar in Germany... but it turned out that it was just a German guy who looked a lot like him-and I was really drunk. That was also the day I got my tattoo by a guy named "Gunther" and the day my friend Leslie bought a stocking cap that was in the shape of a chicken and everyone kept telling her she had a cock on her head. Ahhh... memories.

Gimmee Three Steps by Lynyrd Skynryd. How can anyone NOT like this song? It reminds me of my friend Sherry-she was singing it one New Years Eve just before she did a nose dive into my Christmas Tree. This is the same New Year's Eve that I discovered my friend Lori is a very affectionate drunk. ahem. I'll always and forever smile when I hear this song and it was a favorite of mine long before the Christmas Tree incident... it is just cool. Just try not to roll your shoulders while you listen to this song, you won't be able to do it.

Turn by Travis. You know why I love this song? Because years ago I saw the video and thought is was cool. That is it. Nothing special-it just stuck with me and I have carried it with me ever since. You never hear it on the radio, you may have never even heard it on the radio here in the States. It is another memory from our days in England. His voice is perfect.

Broken by Seether. I dig the drums in this... also I like his voice. It is the song I turn on when I am missing Carl and want to be sad. It is a good song to help you sink into a mood that we need to visit from time to time. You know what I am talking about--a sad that reminds me that I still feel even though most days I am numb. Phew--that was deep.

Okay... a few more messages for some Six-Packers:

Aunt Barb-I know you love "I'm Yours". I went to a talent show at our high school a while back and three guys got up and did this accapella. I thought of you and how much you would have loved it. They were awesome and that performance was better than the original recorded song.

Melissa-thanks for saying "No Rain" by Blind Melon. That is so you man.

Kelly-I have to tell you that it was very hard for me to put John Mayer on my blog... but for you I did. I don't hate him as much as I hate Britney or Taylor Swift so I gave in, but this will be the last time do you hear me?

Hobbit-I would have to agree with your assessment that Jeff Buckley's "Hallelujah" may just be the best song ever... if it weren't so bloody long. I do love it though-thanks for reminding me.

Joanne-Hello! How have I never found Carbon Leaf before? Thank you! Love them.

Quitecontrary- Sean Lennon? Really? Dead Meat? Seriously? Okay... sure.

CJ-I looked for your "A Woman To Love" song but only found the version from Enrique Iglesias and it is hot. I hope you like it... if not, too bad. Enrique is hot for a skinny guy.

Jaibee-I can't believe I put Aikon on here let alone Reliant K and that awful Pirate song... never question my loyalty to you. Sheesh.

Warren-I hope you don't mind, but I put your Chattanooga Choo Choo in a medley from Glenn Miller just because Glenn is a genius. I also did this for my mother because she wanted the 1812 Overture (I am sure she was hitting the boxed wine when she commented) so I thought I could appease her old and fragile bones with some Glenn. Thanks for sharing. We all know that my mother would be happy with any song from the movie "West Side Story" though. My dad would want something from "The Sound of Music." It is a miracle that I ever survived that house.

Cousin Steve-although you did not comment on your favorite song, I am sure it would have been some country crap that would have made me stick my head in the oven, but you will be happy to see that Garth Brooks and Willie Nelson made it on this playlist, you country loving freak.

FYI-the playlist is at the bottom of this page so if you want to find your favorite song or go listen to Follow You Home which will change your life, have at it.

That is it folks, and in the words of that skinny, short and irritating Ryan Seacrest... June Out.


Don't Look At Me That Way... I'm Allowed To Complain

There has been something that I always complain about and I am a bit leery to put it on this blog for the simple fact that it looks as though I have a lot of newly married brides who are frequenting the Six-Pack as of late... but I just can't stay silent any longer. I have to let it out--but I want all of you new brides out there to know that in no way, shape or form do I think marriage is a bad thing. I love being married-I do. I wouldn't change it for the world.

Also, I do not want to be looked at as a "complaining blogger" when I type this because many of you may read this and say "sheesh... what in the world is she complaining about!" But this has been one heck of a week for me and my mood is a bit of a funk and therefore I need to vent-and I can't vent about everything (really June? You can't vent about your double agent persona in the government?)

AND... I don't want any of you to think that my husband does not help out--because he does (no, not really, but we'll say he does because he likes to think he does and we all know that if a man thinks he is doing something and then a woman corrects him, he has a hard time with this criticism... but whatever.)

So now that I have said that... let's get on with it shall we?

Men are freakin' lucky!!!!!

Let me break it down for you:

When a guy is single, he has to do his own laundry (unless his mother still does it) he has to fix his own dinner (which I am thinking consists of soup, sandwiches and take-out) he has to clean his own bathroom (c'mon ladies... we have all seen what our husband's bathrooms looked like when we dated them-unless they lived with their mother) and so on...

When a girl is single she has to do her own laundry, fix her own dinner and clean her own bathroom and so on...

When a man and a woman get married, the man no longer has to do his laundry-the woman does hers and his. The man no longer has to cook-the woman does this too, and you can bet that she is no longer eating cereal for dinner like she did when she was single, she is making things like pot roast and mashed potatoes and all kinds of other fattening things to please her new husband. The woman also takes on the entire bathroom cleaning duties as well, leaving the man to never have to scrub a toilet-the toilet that he makes so much dirtier than she ever would-again.

Eventually children are added to this marriage and the man's life is still not really affected by this. He has a wife that will take care of the kids from getting them to school, to the doctor, to piano lessons, to basketball, and the wife will also clean the children, feed the children, and make sure the children look presentable.

Basically, men have it made when they get married. No questions.

The other day I was listening to a conversation between a few men. One of these men was about to get married and the other men in this group were giving him a hard time. They were telling this guy about women complaining and nagging and even referring to their wives as a "ball and chain."

I was appalled. What would these guys be doing if they weren't married? And don't you dare say "having a good time" you male readers out there. You would be lost without your wife taking care of your life for you.

That is what wives do-they take care of you. They feed you, clothe you, and just like the children, she makes sure you look presentable (she would never let you walk out of the house with a black belt and brown shoes now would she?)

Your wife loves you... and what do you do for her? And don't say "I make the money!" Big deal-I could make money too-in fact, I DO make money so that argument does not hold water.

What else do you do? Hmmm? I mean honestly guys... what do you do for your wife to make sure she is taken care of? When is the last time you put on rubber gloves and cleaned a toilet after she had a stomach virus? When is the last time you checked the pockets of her pants before you washed them to make sure her wallet would not go through the wash? When was the last time you made her a meal that you didn't like but made it anyway because it is her favorite? When was the last time you made sure the sheets were changed on the bed every week or made sure she had a fresh towel after her shower? When was the last time you checked the calendar and reminded her about her dentist appointment, and if she couldn't make it, when was the last time you called to cancel one of her appointments with a feasible excuse? And when was the last time you sat through a television show that you do not like just so you could be close to her on the couch?

I am telling you... you men have it made when you get married.

And the whole "ball and chain" complaining nagging thing? Well, lets just say that you would get a little testy too if you had to not only do for yourself but also do for everyone else in the house on a daily basis.

She just wants a little help. She just wants you to pick up your socks from the bathroom floor and get them in the hamper. She just wants you to put your milk glass in the dishwasher and not in the sink. She just wants you to put the remote control back in the little basket next to the couch and not stuffed between the cushions. She just wants you to wipe your shaven hairs down the drain in the bathroom sink. She just wants you to be grateful.

Women have dreams when they are young just like men do, but our dreams always seem to be put on hold for the common good of the family. We put them on hold to take care of our husbands and our children all the while making sure everyone else strives for and achieves their dreams. Some days it is hard to realize that we can't fulfill our dreams because we are doing laundry and making dinner.

Don't get me wrong, I love the things that have sidetracked my dreams, and I am sure that I will one day fulfill my dreams... and I am thrilled and proud of my husband's dreams and the part I have played in helping him fulfill them, but it would be nice if he didn't assume that it was my JOB to scrub the damn toilet.

I am not the only one that craps in it.

How did I get this duty?



Ward... I Think We Need To Sell The Kids.

During the day... when the kids are in school:

Early evening... when the kids get home from school:

And you people wonder why I drink.


Give Away... Give Away... Give Away...

I love music... I mean, I really really love music. I am sad that I do not have music on this blog right now but I think the site that I was getting my music from gave me that nasty virus that made mucus come out of the all USB ports on my beloved laptop so I just erased it. I have been browsing around to find a new site to put music back on here and I think I found one. I have a date with it tonight and if I come away without any warts on my keyboard I will once again put music back on for your listening enjoyment. If you read this at work, your boss will love me. I have been planning a comeback tour since I deleted the last music selection.

Anyway, I have a love affair with music and therefore I love my iPod, and I am addicted to iTunes (just ask the little man in my laptop that balances my checkbook for me).

You may be surprised to find out that although I enjoy technology, I am technology challenged. I am like a Kindergartner when it comes to technology so I have to stay at a pace that I understand.

My iPod for instance is not a fancy-shmancy, watch movies, download State secrets or find a cure for cancer, type of iPod. It is just a little shuffle. Yep... that is all I need. I turn it on and it plays my music. I clip it to my belt loop and off I go dancing while I vacuum and scrub toilets. I am listening to it right now... Best I Ever Had by Vertical Horizon. Nice.

The only problem I have with my shuffle is that I cannot hook it up to anything that will successfully play in my van so I download music from iTunes and then I burn CDs to play in my van so although I have all of my favorite tunes on my little shuffle, I still have 4,574 CDs scattered throughout my van which drives my husband crazy because he is the ying to my yang and my yang really irritates his ying sometimes. But that is why he loves me... I have some crazy yang going on. Which reminds me of a song that I'll have to remember to burn tonight so I can listen to it in the van and think about my husband's ying.

Burning CDs also poses a problem for the little ears that I tote around town 23 hours out of the day. Not all of the music on my little shuffle is kid friendly (I can't help that Nickelback sings some songs that make my cheeks burn the color of crimson) so I have to color code my CDs that I burn. If you are ever in my van with me and I pull out a red CD, prepare your ears for some great music that may make you say "Phew, it is hot in here?" but if I put in a blue CD you should be Okay... and I only play the green ones when my parents are in town. Kids music is on pink CDs which sometimes get confused with the red CD and then my 14 year old looks at me and says "Mother! I can't believe you are listening to this!" and I ground myself to my bedroom for the rest of the day.

But my birthday is coming up so I think I may just have to move into first grade and update my iPod to something a little more van-friendly. Any suggestions? I don't want anything that I will have to be pushing buttons forever on and I don't want to download music videos or porn, I just want to listen to my music man. Just the tunes.

Music is my life. Without it I wouldn't have inspiration... it is my muse.

If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music. Albert Einstein

So... shall we have a contest? Let me know what your favorite song of all time is and I will try my hardest to get it on this site. I will also pull out the Internet Random Generator thingy from the closet next to my fondue set and your comment may be chosen for a $20 iTunes card.

What a great giveaway don't you think?

You have until Sunday morning to fill me in on your music must-haves.

Good luck!


The Morning After Ramblings....

Carl headed out this morning. I honestly (foolishly) anticipated it being easier this time since we no longer have a year ahead of us, but a mere 7 months. That is chump change right?

Apparently not.

You see, the past two weeks were NORMAL... meaning, it felt like he had never left and it felt like he was never leaving again. So this morning when he had to leave, it sucked. Yep. Big time.

We were able to go to the gate at the airport with Carl and wait for his plane. FYI, if you are taking a military member to the airport before deployment, you are allowed to escort them to the gate so that you can spend ever last minute with them. We waited until everyone boarded before saying good-bye because I didn't want to feel like we were in an episode of Extreme Home Makeover but there would be no new house in the end... it would be just like the beginning reel that Ty Pennington shows the interior designers on the RV and everyone at home cries. I didn't want to make other people cry-so that is why we waited.


Last night we watched the Inaugural Ball coverage. I must say that my favorite moment was at the Commander-in-Chief Ball when President Obama was talking to the soldier via satellite in Iraq. They chose all Chicago area residents and jokingly Obama (a flagrant White Sox fan) asked each of them who they were fans of, the White Sucks or The Cubbies... all but one were Cubs fans.

It was a proud moment for me.


I feel like I have a hang over that only a blue comicazi could give me. Mmmmm, those are really good.


This one is for The Urban Mom from Chi-town (she is a cubs fan too), who has begrudgingly read Twilight and then protested a little bit too much about liking it.

Hey UMom... Edward Cullen is staring at you.



And Wankette , this one is for you... just because I know you like this sort of thing.


And this one is for my mother. You are welcome.


One last thing... Welcome to Fox News Glenn. It's about damn time.



Hail To The Chief...

In all of the years I have been with my husband, it is a very rare occasion that I have ever heard him speak an ill word about a person. It is not in him to be crass or cruel. He does not throw harsh words around and to say he is a person of noble character is putting it lightly-at least in my opinion. I know his beliefs and his convictions, I know who he admires and who he strives to be more like, I also know who he does not like simply by a flinch in his eyebrow or an upturn of the corner of his mouth.

I do not always hold my tongue as well as my husband can, but I have learned to hold my tongue outside of our house... but in these walls I let it fly.

All morning I have been on edge. I have said a few things that have caused my husband to raise his eyebrow at me. I have even made up a little ditty of a song that my husband turned up the corner of his mouth to and shook his head at me. But in the end, I agree with my husband. I am an American and the history of our country is a great and amazing thing. President Obama was right when he said that we have a strong spirit. I can only hope that he has as much noble character as my husband does.

Eventually I settled down and watched in silence as President Bush and Laura left the White House lawn and boarded Marine One. My husband and I both sat and watched.

"This is so sad." I said, not expecting a response from Carl.

"Yes... it is sad." Was all he said, and then I cried.

So I would like to say thank you to President and Mrs. George Walker Bush. May your lives be filled with peace and love. May you bask in the happiness that your beautiful daughters give you and may you always know that this country, my country is better because of you. Thank you for your dignity, your graciousness, and your strength. Thank you for your compassion and your moral convictions. Thank you for standing up for what is right and protecting those who are unable to protect themselves. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

May God bless you always.

*Big Sigh*

Today is a sad day in the Six-Pack.

Carl leaves tomorrow, so today is a very melancholy day-trying to fit in the last of the hugs and kisses and breathing in his smell so that I remember every last detail... again.

What? Did you think I would be sad for some other reason today?

It is a sad thing when someone you love and respect leaves... it is a sad thing to feel less safe and secure... it is a sad day when someone great has to move on.

What? Who do you think I am talking about?

Yep... today is a tough day in the Six-Pack.


Warning... Husbands May Be Bad For Your Health

I must fill you in on something that I have been doing for the past 6 months or so. I have not mentioned this before because I did not want to scare you or make you say "June, you have turned out to be a tree-hugging hippy."

A while back I decided to start living healthy. I know... what a weird thing to do. Just before Carl left I made a plan that I knew would be easier to put into action with him gone versus trying to instill healthy living with him home.

I gave up meat.

There, I said it. I stopped eating cow, pig, chicken, turkey, and all other creatures. I also cut out soda-but not entirely, I could not sit at a movie theater and eat my popcorn with water could I? That would be insane, so if I am at the movies I get a soda-but that is about it.

Why did I do this? (Yes June why did you, a red-blooded conservative American, decide to go all soft and become a weirdo?) Well, I did it for my health. Honest.

I had this problem where I ate and then I pooped. I know that biologically you are supposed to poop after you eat-if you didn't you would be full of crap, but I used to eat and then have to poop almost immediately after... as in, if I were going out to dinner and then to a movie or shopping, I would have to stop by home and drop the kids off at the pool before I could go on to the next activity. I had to not eat on road trips for fear of roadside toilets. I had to scope out the bathrooms at the mall, Target, the commissary, and even places that had public restrooms within 3.5 miles of my home "just in case" I couldn't make it.

Now, you may be thinking "GROSS!" and that is so very true. It was horrible and I needed to do something about it... and that is why I cut out meat and soda (well, the soda was really just because fish and soda don't go so well together).

Let me tell you, I feel great. My skin is less oily and clear, my stomach no longer clenches and loosens until I run to a bathroom, and my pants started to fit better and then become too big until I had to go down not one, but two pant sizes! Oh-and I have not been sick and neither have my children (who have been forced to survive the test kitchen dishes like "tofu chili" and "mystery bean soup")

Then... Carl came home on leave and he wanted nothing to do with the "no meat" zone that was going on in our house. He says he will be ready to accept it when he returns in the late summer, but for these 2 weeks he wanted to eat all of the crap that he could and savor it for one last hurrah.

So I have gone along with him to restaurants and fast food establishments eating only my salads and seafood and drinking my water and I have not once wished that I could eat the same greasy burger that he was stuffing in his mouth or guzzle the gas inducing soda that he has slurped up at all... until today.

You see... I had a coupon. Damn that coupon! Damn the coupon gods! Damn it! I love to save money and if I have to eat a handmade 1/4 burger from one of our hometown favorite restaurants, well then by golly, I may just do it. It was a buy-one get-one type of coupon, so you can see how my hands were tied.

Stupid coupon!

I ate a burger today and it was delicious. No where did I ever say that I did not like meat, I just realized that it does not like me. (on the list of things that do not like me: meat, Bill Gates, my son's history teacher, and that one mean greeter at WalMart.)

Case in point... 25 minutes after eating that burger I was in the bathroom and had a headache and wanted to take a 3 hour nap to get through the rest of the day.

I suppose I had to prove it to myself that meat does not work with my inner workings, but it is still a little sad that I cannot enjoy a juicy fillet Mignon or a greasy burger... but I will go back to my soy meat and flax seed diet. *big sigh*

Too bad chocolate cake didn't make me sick, or cheesecake, or milk duds, or little Debbie cosmic brownies, or rice crispy treats, or cinnamon rolls. Living healthy would be so much easier if ALL of the good stuff made me feel the instant urge to pull over and find a hole in the ground so that I could poop.

Is this too much information? Maybe.


It Is Useless to Resist...

With my husband home, I have not had time to look at other swoon-worthy men, but I have to tell you... Dominic Cooper just keeps knocking on my door.



I mean, look at him. Hello! How can you NOT swoon over this Brit?


You may know him from films like Mama Mia, or History Boys, but I highly recommend you go out and get the BBC version of Sense and Sensibility where Coop here plays the charismatic Willoughby. Swoon, swoon, swoon.


It is not time or opportunity that is to determine intimacy;-- it is disposition alone. Seven years would be insufficient to make some people acquainted with each other, and seven days are more than enough for others.
Ahhh, young love.

She felt the loss of Willoughby's character yet more heavily than she had felt the loss of his heart . . .
Oh Willoughby, I feel so sorry for you. *Sigh*
I think I may just have to add all of Jane Austen's men to my swoon worthy list for the simple fact that she writes them so brilliantly. I love you Jane Austen... truly I do.


Is This Thing On? Hello?

My Aunt Judi (with an "i") sent me this today. Carl thought it was the funniest thing he had ever read... he has been nodding his head and laughing all day.

It is enough to make me want to clobber him let me tell you.

I did not think it was very funny... or rather, I thought it was hilarious until Carl found it so funny and then I found it offensive.

Who does he think he is, and just when did he develop a sense of humor? In all of our 18 years he has never laughed at one of my jokes... but today, a simple comic strip makes him laugh.

I am literally disgusted.


sorry it is so fuzzy... no mother, you do not need your eyes checked (but you should show this to dad and see how mad he gets at the doctor that performed his "I CAN SEE!" surgery.) Aunt Judi should be able to read this now since she got the fuzzies removed from her eyes.
Happy Birthday Aunt Judi! Love you!


God... You Are Such A Sly Guy!

You know, God is pretty smart. I bet that one day when he was making woman, He sat and thought out every little detail that would go into her. For the most part... He did really well wouldn't you agree? But I have a few questions, like what is up with PMS, and why do we have hair that still grows on our legs when we shave them every other day?


There is one aspect of a woman that I think God thought up and then sat back and said "That is really good... I am so Amazing and Smart."

It is that mood that He puts a woman in right around the time that she is ovulating. Now, a mere mortal would have thought to have her be a little frisky when she was ovulating so that she finds the man that she is married to and who leaves the seat up completely and utterly irresistible, but it would only be something that God would think up to not only make the woman frisky, but also give her that one week out of the month where she is skinnier than the rest of the month!

Does this happen to only me? I am willing to bet not, but it never ceases to amaze me the lengths that God will go in order for us to "go forth and multiply."

He knew what He was up against... He had to somehow make a woman-as perfect as she is-want to have "relations" with a man-as flawed as he is-at least once a month... on a specific day... that would make them have a baby.

So what did He do? He made this ovulation thing take place during the best week of this woman's month. It is the week that he didn't make her overly hungry and he graced her with the gift of no water weight whatsoever.

I just finished this week, and let me be perfectly honest, with Carl gone I don't usually pay any attention to the best week of the month because there is no one here to appreciate it. But with Carl home, I can't help but think "Damn! I look good!" and then he looks at me and says "Why yes you do, do you wanna have sex?" and I say, "it would be a crime NOT to have sex when I look this good!" and then he says, "I completely agree." (pfffft, of course he agrees... )

And all the while God is sitting up in Heaven rubbing his Spiritual Hands together and gleefully laughing.

He's so sneaky.

Sidenote: No where in this post am I saying that I am pregnant. Do not read into this... I am simply blogging about something I was thinking about the other day when I was basking in my no water weight body and trying on my new pair of size 6 jeans that I will only be able to wear for one week out of each month.


Just Hear Me Out...

Okay, so I know you all think that my husband is a great guy and all (I am talking to you mother, Aunt Barb and Cousin Steve), and believe me, there is no one on God's great earth that does not think he is a greater guy than I do (not even his mother!)... but he has been home for a little over a week now and it was bound to happen. I knew this would happen. I have been waiting for this to happen.


Okay... I feel better now. Phew.

Let me explain.

I am an independent woman-he has made me this way with this career path that he chose-but he really likes to think of me as a frail, timid, dependant little woman that needs to be told what to do, how to do it, and if it is being done correctly or not.


I don't really think he thinks of me this way, because he has known me for 18 years... maybe he just wishes I was a little more timid and dependant upon him than I seem.

He is also a very jealous person-not in the terms of "did you look at that guy over there" (which is the kind of jealous that I am... I need to know what all of the girls that work within a 3 mile radius of him look like-I can't help it.) He is more of an "attention" jealous person. If my sister calls and he is watching television and the phone call takes me into another room where he cannot see me for more than 5 minutes, he comes looking for me and starts making those hand motions that mean "will you hurry up and get off the phone?" or if the neighbor catches me on the way back from the mailbox and we have a chat about the gang of pesky adolescents that seem to organize and plot anarchy down at the park, he will peek his head out of the window no less than 25 times making sure that I do not get into a passing car and drive away from him and never come back.

Seriously... he has always been like this. Maybe not so bad-but close. Very close.

He also has his own agenda... by this I mean that he, like all men, have their own agenda. You know what I am talking about ladies. It is the schedule that a man keeps that only includes himself. The schedule a woman keeps includes her children, the dog, her mother-in-law, the dentist, the pediatrician, the butcher, the mailman, the principal, the neighbor and the occasional car mechanic... no where in a woman's schedule does it include herself.

Now, don't get me wrong, I am fully aware that everything my husband does is for the greater good of our family. Every decision he makes impacts all of us greatly, so we better go along with his plan right? Because he is doing it for us after all, and if he were writing this blog I am sure he would say that he only goes along with everything that I want to do-regardless of what he wants, because he is a giver, always giving giving giving. Which are all valid points, except for the fact that he has his own agenda.

Case in point:

Today my husband was going on base to chat with "The Boss." While he was going to be in his "15 minutes TOPS" meeting, "we" thought it would be the perfect time for me to go to the commissary. So the days started with my husband waking me up, shuffling the kids out of the door to school, getting me in and out of a shower and asking me just how much longer until I was ready and then driving me (in MY minivan-the one with the vanity plate that has MY name on it) to base and dropping me and the baby off at the co-misery. I stood at the entrance and watched him drive away, wondering just when I reverted back to the 1950's.

Shopping took me all of 25 minutes because any mother knows that shopping with a 20 month old is much like trying to hang wallpaper before the glue dries, you have to do it fast and steady. Anything past 25 minutes and the baby goes into hyperactive shock and if you are only in the bread aisle when this happens... God help you.

My husband was supposed to finish his "15 minutes I swear!" meeting and meet me to help with the shopping (because remember, this is the 1950's and I need help writing a check to pay the bill). 25 minutes and no husband.

I could not check out because I did not have the coupons. "I'll keep the coupons babe and just meet you there... in 15 minutes!" I love to save money and I'd be damned if I was going to miss out on $4.25 savings because I could not wait for my husband to finish his 15 minute meeting and meet me.

30 minutes and no husband....

40 minutes and no husband....

So I stood as close to the entry of the co-misery waiting... with a 20 month old child who no longer wanted to be locked in the seat of the cart and no longer wanted to be held and no longer wanted to sit quietly but only wanted to writhe and scream and yell "NO NO NO" while she shoved her hands down my shirt because just watching the old people walk past her with looks of pity for her were not enough, she had to embarrass me beyond belief by showing them all my pretty beige bra!

50 minutes and no husband...

Have I mentioned before that I have no patience? Well... I don't. I have no patience at all, and if I am ticked off, I don't even know how to spell patience let along hum the tune by Guns and Roses.

I was also getting very angry... in a few minutes I would be getting mad-as in-foaming at the mouth and biting the next old man that looked at my daughter and laughed and said "Did Mommy pinch you little one?"

60 minutes and no husband...

This is around the time that I started thinking of his agenda. I started imagining him socializing and laughing with people he hadn't seen in 5 months while I sat at the co-misery waiting for him with my butter pecan ice cream melting on top of my Doritos!

My husband is a social guy. You would not know it by looking at him, actually you would think that it was me who was the social one in our duo, but it is him. He loves to chat with people and listen to their stories and joke around... I can't stand that type of crap because I do not have any patience and therefore I cannot stand small talk.

So I knew he was off probably chatting with some female about the weather (see, I told you I was jealous) and I was standing in the entry way of the co-misery with my baby's head spinning around while she vomited.

I thought of ditching the entire shopping ordeal and calling a cab to take me home and then changing the locks on all of the doors, but I remembered that I did not have a baby car seat so that evil plan was thwarted by the man who would rather me be stranded at the co-misery with a screaming toddler, and if he had his way I would be pregnant and barefoot at the store as well without a vehicle so that I was completely and utterly at the mercy of his assistance!

Do you see the way my mind works?

I can't help that I like to be independent and for a few hours this morning I was the furthest thing from independent... I was helpless and stranded.

and I was mad.

Eventually he made it there... and he knew by just one look that he was going to have to "deal" with me. My husband is an expert at "dealing" with me-he has known me for 18 years and has "dealt" with many of my Sybil personalities, and somehow he has survived so don't feel sorry for him. It was him that left me stranded at the co-misery remember? REMEMBER?

But he looked so good in his uniform that I quickly forgave him and he bought me lunch.

I know, I am weak. I couldn't help it, it was the 1950's fault.