27 June, 2007

michael yon widget

Things seem to really be taking off in Iraq right now, and I wanted to know more about it so I found someone who is acutally over there! I have posted what is called a "widget" on the right hand side of both of my blogs so that you can see what a reporter writes about who is actually there. It seems that he is accurate, I have read articles about him in different newspapers and he seems to be honorable and trustworthy. (I guess we can ask Ross when he gets back right?!) Anyway, his name is Michael Yon and he is a 40-year-old veteran. He was a green beret. I like what he writes anyway...so read it if you want a glimpse into what is happening. yah, the widget is there...check out Michael Yon.

His site is : http://www.michaelyon-online.com/

feist concert

feist played in P-town, and ellyn bought brad and i tickets for his birthday!! yay. we went up with ellyn and andrew, went to sushi, to powells for coffee and then to the chrystall ballroom for the opening act of "grizzly..."..uh....something and then feist. it was fun...the company was way fun too. yay! rock on hendrix!! (that is an inside joke...i think.)

ellyn and bethany

Chrystal ballroom gargoyle
trying to hear

strange picture, really.

people...do this many people in a closed-in environment make you nervous??...they do me. what if there is a stampede?!

ellyn suggested swinging from this chandelier... so that i could actually see.

here's to ellyn for the tickets...and to andrew and ellyn for spending the night with us even though we are sitters and not shovers. we love you.

26 June, 2007

ARROWHEAD RIPPER: Our Toops Mission in Baqubah

An update on the mission that Ross is a part of. I am not sure if he is directly involved in the reports from this exact search, but I do know that he is on this mission.I just found an article that I am going to share with ya. ..after you read the excerpt i have here click the link for more...it is worth it!! this article is good.

michael yon reports from Baqubah:

The heat is intense for the enemy and for us...

our guys are seriously outsmarting them. Big fights are ahead and we will take serious losses probably, but al Qaeda, unless they find a
way to escape, are about to be slaughtered.
Nobody is dropping leaflets asking them to
surrender. Our guys want to kill them, and that’s the plan.
A positive indicator on the 19th and the 20th is that most local people apparently are happy that al Qaeda is being trapped and killed. Civilians are pointing out IEDs and enemy fighters, so that’s not working so well for al Qaeda. Clearly, I cannot do a census, but that says something about the locals.
Much going on here in Baqubah. Unfortunately I have no assistant with me, and so no time for photos or video.
More soon.

Here is the link. READ THE WHOLE THING:


This one is from globalsecurity.org:

ARROWHEAD RIPPER: Troops Find Execution House, Illegal Prison in Baqubah

American Forces Press Service

BAQUBAH, Iraq, June 25, 2007 – Iraqi security forces and Task Force Lightning soldiers discovered an execution house and an illegal prison in the Baqubah neighborhood of Khatoon yesterday during the sixth day of Operation Arrowhead Ripper.
The two buildings were in the same area as a torture chamber and illegal courthouse linked to al Qaeda, which were found on the fourth and fifth day of the operation, officials said. Soldiers from 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, discovered the execution house using information from local citizens, who said it had been used by al Qaeda. Soldiers searching the house found five bodies buried in the yard behind the building and bloody clothes in several rooms inside it. Located nearby, a house had been converted into an illegal prison, with several numbered rooms and bars covering the building's windows. Several blindfolds were found inside.

(From a Multinational Corps Iraq news release.)

for more information and updates on the mission head to:


19 June, 2007

the news today

this was the news that made me uneasy, nervous and fearful...then I remembered it is all in God's hands. He has a plan...His wisdom is not human wisdom. He will use all our mistakes together to make something beautiful. Please God...keep my brother safe...please.

"WASHINGTON, June 19, 2007 – The beginningof a new offensive
targeting al Qaeda in the Iraqi city ofBaqubah
highlights recent
operations reported by military officials in Iraq.
Troops began
Operation Arrowhead Ripper in Baqubah today, killing 22 insurgents in a
large-scale effort to eliminate al Qaeda members.
Infantry Division’s 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team launched the offensive with a quick-strike
night air assault early this morning. By daylight, attack helicopters and ground forces had engaged and killed the enemy fighters in and around Baqubah. “
The end state is to
destroy the al Qaeda influences in this province and eliminate their threat
against the people
," said Army Brig. Gen. Mick Bednarek, deputy
commanding general ofoperations for the 25th Infantry
“That is the No. 1, bottom-line, up-front, in-your-face task and
purpose.” About 10,000 soldiers,with a full complement of attack
helicopters, close-air support, Strykers and Bradley fighting vehicles, are
taking part in Arrowhead Ripper, which isstill in its opening stages
Elements of the 1st Cavalry Division’s 3rd BrigadeCombat Team from Fort
Hood, Texas,
the 2nd Infantry Division’s 4th Brigade Combat
Team from Fort Lewis, Wash.
, and the 25th Combat Aviation Brigade from
Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, also are participating in the operation. "

( this is an article in American Forces Press Services today, June 19th, 2007)
for more info and the rest of this article check out:

my little brother is in the 3rd Stryker Brigade from Fort Lewis...please pray with us for his saftey and the saftey of all the soldiers in this war. we will not forget our heroes.

11 June, 2007

hero productions1

this is for ross...he has already seen it, and so has the rest of my family...but for those who haven't. hereyago-yo.


we have recently been completely addicted to movies here at our bungaree home. Okay, so i figured i would share our likes and dislikes and the variations of likes and dislikes of Brad vs. Bethany.

the Queen is a story of the people, England's royalty, and the prime minister during the difficult time of Dianna's death. we both enjoyed this movie, relating to some characters, and wishing we could understand others...it is a movie of the heart. however being a movie of the heart, it is not sappy or overdone i guess i just liked it. brad did too. we give it a collective 8.5 snaps. we are in good company too since it has a list of nominations and awards that seem endless.

Cars is a great kids movie, and Brad and I enjoyed it as well. I think we will buy this one in a couple years when j can actually sit through a whole two-hour movie. The principles are spectacular and pixar films are getting even better than they were. all of us enjoyed this one.

since j made us all pick our favourite cars i'll share that with you too: I like "Chick Hicks" , Brad hands down loves "Mater", j likes (who else!?) "Lightning McQueen", and o...well, jsays he likes "Doc Hudson"...but we'll update this when he can actualy pic out his own. ha!

So, for reals this film gets a collective 7 snaps...(3.5 each) just an overall beaut.

check it out on wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cars_(film) if ya wanna....

Syriana. well we do vary on this one. Brad liked it because it didn't really have a plot, he liked the acting, he liked it. I didn't like it. to me it seemed like it did not allow for character development, you didn't connect with anyone, and if you did they were killed off quickly. i know bad things happen...yes...but to me this movie had no light moments in which to even breathe, and yet it seemed almost boring. so i guess we give it a collective 5 snaps, being that brad gives it his 3 out of 5 and i give it 2 out of 5 .

you can check it out at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syrianna

a prairie home companion, has good and bad. no true plot, really, and just a little bit of a behind-the-scenes of the radio show. Brad liked this one, for me it was not a waste of time but it was not very interesting. it is a different type of movie...the aimless type. if you like aimless, odd ones give this a try. it reminded me of that movie "like a mighty wind" or something like that, which i didn't like either. oh well...not good, but not bad.

I give it a 2.5 out of 5 and Brad a 3.5 out of 5 so i guess the math is a collective 6 snaps.

Blood Diamond was an incredible film. the more it settled in the more i thought about the meaning of it. Brad says that since he rates his movies artistically he can only give it 3.5, i say rubbish. I guess i rate my movies on how much the characters bring me into themselves, on how much they make me think, on how deep they go, on character development...so i give this movie 4.5 snaps, for a collective total of 8 snaps. brad is right that it is mainly action, not artistic. jennifer connelly is one of my top5 favourite actors/actresses and she is perfect in this movie. i loved it, brad liked it...rent it! you'll never want another diamond again!

mistress of spices....uhhh. nope this does not win either of us over on heart, mind or artisticness. it is a story of love, an impossible love and an incredibly cheesy list of events. there is somehow on some level a little enchantment of some sort...for that i rate it 2, but Brad rates it an unforgiving 1 for a total of 3 snaps. i love indian films but this one is just to americanised and ends up lacking any sort of flavor. better luck next time. eh?

that is it for now...but i am on my way to the local lebanon Blockbuster and pretty soon i'll have some more to write about. any of you out there better than me at math...you might want to check my addition! (not a joke)

07 June, 2007

not a word

you know when your brain is cramped to the point that all your ideas are to heavy? how-a-bout when you just have too much to say so you can't really say anything? this is the way i feel most of the time. i have little glimpses of this topic and that, this thought and that thought, but not anything coherent or worth the energy of moving my fingers across the keyboard or even picking up a pen.
it's something like: ZAP!-oh!... gone.
some would argue that " you need to do rough drafts", "just jot down what comes to mind"..."you'll probably make something out of the gibber-gabber someday". the truth is this is of no value to me, i move on, i have new thoughts and don't like to constantly sift thought old ones that seemed relevant, but no longer are. i live to dream new dreams, toy with current thoughts and not exist as if every thought that comes into my head is actually a sovereign work of art that needs to be written in permanent marker across some scrap of hard-to-find paper. i have written all my life, and sometimes i wish i hadn't. i have endless journals in which i wrote deep emotions on hello kitty paper, emotions such as crushes when i was 11 and heartbreaks and dreams. some i like to read, mostly i don't. i don't like the immaturity i used to pridefully expose on paper. now i keep that to myself. i hide weakness. i hide those worn diaries with hearts drawn and scribbled over time and time over. i hide the selfishness written on the pages, the thoughts that are just too embarrassing to even remember. i hide them in a box in my attic.
yet sifting through all the junk i sorted out in words- i find myself. i find me, just younger, bolder, my thoughts more black and white,with a belief in humankind, innocence...and i miss those things. and even if i don't want to, i hide those too, mostly just because it takes to much time to decipher my bad handwriting.