Archive - June 2009

Crockpot Granola
Spring Storms
Colorado Springs
Off We Go!

Crockpot Granola

With our packers coming on Monday, we have so much to do, but my friends Kat and Sheril wanted my recipe for crockpot granola, so here it is:

Crockpot Granola

5 c. oats
½ c. oil
½ c. honey
1 t. vanilla
1 t. cinnamon
1 c. coconut

Mix all ingredients in crockpot. Cook on low for 5 hours or until brown, stirring occasionally. **Important: Make sure you keep the cover cracked on the crockpot. The more frequently you stir, the finer the consistency. If you prefer clumpier granola stir less.

Add raisins, dried fruit, nuts, chocolate chips when finished cooking….whatever you desire. This is delicious as a hot or cold cereal, as a snack, a topping for yogurt or made into granolabars.

This is very yummy, and my children love it.  Plus it makes the house smell so good while it’s cooking.

Spring Storms

The storm that brought down this tree at the White House last week:


Did this to our neighbors’ flag pole:

rsz_dsc01815Notice how the flag pole is mounted below the gutter and is bent backwards over the roof.

Spring storms – not my favorite things.


No doubt you’ve heard the Army word, “hooah.”  It’s such a useful and diverse word, appropriate in any situation.  It can indicate agreement, as in “Wow, what a hot and sticky day!” “Hooah!”  It’s often used as a superlative, like “That’s one hooah car” or “That’s pretty hooah.” Or it can be used to emphasize the importance of the matter:  “If you don’t hurry up, we’re leaving without you hooah.”  Notice there is no punctuation before “hooah” in that last sentence.  You say it without pausing.

So when my friend Tami suggested that we use “hooah” on Philip’s retirement cake, we knew that was exactly what we wanted.

Philip’s retirement ceremony was in a word – hooah.  Lots of people came, including a friend from our Civil Air Patrol cadet days, our dear friends from our time in Korea and 3 of the 4 families that I desperately hope move to Colorado Springs when they retire.  (The 4th family has already moved out of the area and could not make the ceremony.)

The official retirement orders were read, which really choked me up hooah.  It read in part, “…You are retired from active duty, released from assignment and duty, and on the date following, place on the retired list.”  Wow.  It’s really all over.  Hooah!

Philip was honored by letters appreciation from President Obama and former Presidents George W. Bush and Clinton.  We’re still waiting to hear from President Bush the senior, who is busy jumping out of airplanes, because he’s such a hooah guy.

Philip’s boss and the guys in his office put together a hooah retirement gift- a shadow box containing all of his insignia and his medals.  The flag was recently flown over the Pentagon.


I was honored with a certificate from the Department of the Army for being such a hooah Army spouse.

Philip gave a hooah speech, as expected.


Then we had some great chow (that would be “food” to you civilians) and celebrated Philip’s 20 hooah years of service.




On our second day of house hunting, Pike’s Peak was clearly visible, strong and silent and covered with snow.  The rain was gone and the temperatures were mild and we were confident that God would reveal our new house to us, just as he had revealed the mountain.

We were right.


I’m reluctant to share too many pictures here because the house is still occupied and the pictures are full of their stuff.

But I will show you the kitchen.


And the view from the dining room into the backyard.


And check out the staircase –


And for good measure, this is the park directly across the street.

We close on June 30th.

As Boo used to say so often, “God has blessed us again!”

Colorado Springs

Our trip to Colorado got off to a rather inauspicious start.  For some unknown reason that I’m sure made sense at the time, President Obama decided to embark on his trip to the Middle East from Dulles International Airport, instead of from Andrews AFB, like he’s supposed to.  So instead of taking off on time,  we sat on the tarmac and waited for the President to leave.

Finally he was gone and we were allowed to take off.   By the time we arrived in Colorado Springs it was 1:00 in the morning.

We spent all the next day looking at houses.  It was rainy and cold, and of course we were wearing summer clothes.  But we trudged on, trying to find the perfect house.  But mid afternoon we were all tired and our real estate agent let us go while he took everything we’d said about the houses and put together a more precise list of homes that were what we wanted.

After a nap and  a huge rainstorm, Pike’s Peak finally emerged from the clouds.

I’d been talking about wanting to see it all day, so when Philip came back to our room from getting groceries, he asked the children if they wanted to go outside and see “Mama’s Mountain.”  And that’s what everyone calls it now.

I have to say that I’m enamored with Colorado Springs.   The area where we looked for homes was wonderfully suburban with every shop and restaurant you could want.  They even have “Five Guys” – a burger place that started in DC and is one of our favorites.  Everything was wide and spacious, which is a huge change from the overcrowding of the DC Metro area.  Not that DC doesn’t have a lot to offer, I just love the mountains and I always have! The Rocky Mountains are visible from pretty much everywhere and during our house hunting we saw rabbits, deer and a fox.

We hit the local mall and let Bip work out some extra energy playing in the kids area called “Tyke’s Peak.”  It was the first thing we saw in the mall and while he played I went to check the directory to see what kinds of stores they had.  I was thinking to myself that if they had an Orange Julius, I’d be in heaven.

So do they?  Of course they do!  Not only that, but a store called “All Things Catholic.”  A Catholic store! Right there in the mall!  I have only ever seen one other Catholic store and that one is here in Old Town Alexandria and run by Pauline nuns.

So we were more than a little bit pleased with the mall.  You can tell so much about a community by the quality of the local shopping.

When we left the mall it was 5pm.  On a Friday.  By all accounts, it should have been rush hour traffic at its worst.  What we saw made us laugh so hard and was so unbelievable that we had to take a picture..  Ladies and gentlemen…Colorado Springs on a Friday at 5pm:


Go ahead and click on that picture to make it larger and enjoy the wide open highway. And the bird poop on our window.

As Little Orphan Annie once sang, “I think I’m gonna like here!”

Off We Go!

We’re off to Colorado today to go house hunting.  It’s all very exciting and if I can get all the little people to stop saying, “uh…Mama?” every three minutes, I might actually be able to get us packed, deal with the moving guy coming to take inventory of our junk household goods and explain to Boo once again how I want him to pack five shirts, one of which needs to have a collar, not five shirts plus a collared shirt.

And remember to pack the checkbook.

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