Friday, December 18, 2009

Hurry up and Wait...

Anyone see Noah?
at least the mountain of seabags makes for a comfy bed!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Deployed... First Stop: Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar

So after a REALLY long flight to Doha, Qatar. Noah and I made it to Al Udeid.
We are extremely jetlagged, but here is a pic of us
Next post will be when I have internet somewhere in Afghanistan, I don't know where or when... but I'll try to post when I can. For anyone trying to keep up, I'm 8hrs ahead of East Coast time right now, and when I get to Afghanistan it will be a little bit more than 8hrs...
but anyways, I'm safe and sound and ready to go...

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Good Times, Good friends... 5 yrs later!

Jan, Me and James in 2004...

and last nite we got together again... man its been WAY too long since all three of us got to hang out...
(BELOW- James, Me and Jan... 2009 hehe)
(BELOW- Me and Jan)

(Below- James and Me)
We had an awesome dinner and catchin up on old times last nite at Ceviche in Tampa...
Good times... Good friends... You guys are awesome! Miss you already! Hope we can all get together again soon... and Yes Jan, I will someday be able to get to Norway!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Soldiers hold joint Training

Check out: THE POST FT. DIX

I'm quoted in the article "Soldiers hold joint training"

They did take pictures of the Coasties but guess we werent pretty enough to put in the paper. =( They said they'd email me some of the pics though so if I get em, i'll post up....

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

In the "Narmy" Now....


(ABOVE- CDR, me, Noah, back row- Mike, Doc, Weiss, Big-O, Bills, Mike and Baylor

So, as you know i've been at FT. DIX for some predeployment training. Well i'll try to describe the madness... Above is the group I went through training with. We were a group of 4 navy guys and 6 coasties, all "attached" to a navy command on base. The ten of us did everything together day and nite 24/7 practically, we lived in 4 rooms right next to each other in one part of a barracks. Notice, i'm the only girl in the group.. yeah that was interesting..... The guys were great, they took good care of me... and of course they liked to pick on me a great bit too.

The gang got along real great, nicknames started pretty quick... there were 5 officers and 5 enlisted. Three of the O's were named Mike... one we called doc... bec he's a PA. We called the CDR, CDR bec he was in charge! The senior Navy PO we called Big-O or alphabet soup bec his last name was so long.. BIG-O did a lot of extra work and we owe a lot to him for finishing up! Weiss we started calling the kid, bec he was the youngest and is practically an olympic runner, weiss ran me to shame a couple times, i couldnt keep up! Then of course they had a nickname for me... they called me Princess... well mostly Mike (the NYC mike) called me that.

The gang was pretty good though!

The trng was definitly beneficial, the navy unit hosting us called it "You're in the Narmy now" bec we definitely played army. One thing i'm certain of... I'm glad I didnt join the army! It was fun but I wouldnt want to do this stuff forever.

We got combat lifesavor certified, that was fun, we did real iv's on each other in that class.. check it out

(above- Me just having successfully given a combat IV to Bills)
(below- Me after my 2nd IV, I volunteered to get stuck twice, one in each arm bec i'm not afraid of needles, fun stuff, hehe)

The land nav course was interesting, We went through the training with a lot of Air Force folks deploying. My land nav team was Doc, Doria, Me and Rosanne an AF Major who loves driving the humvee... man that course was crazy... we almost got lost but we actually finished all three courses really fast! we ended up waiting around for almost 3 hrs waiting for other teams to finish. At one point Doc surprised us all by climbing a tree! We couldnt figure out how to get around a swamp and all of a sudden Doc was up in a tree... OMG it was funny!
(Below- Rosanne and Me at one of our markers)
Ok... so one of the STUPIDEST things ever.... the Army has GOT to change this one... OMG, no wonder they have problems in theater with rapes and sexual harassment... they ADVERTISE where the damn females are... like are you kidding me???
look at what i had to have outside my tent on at the "FOB" (forward operating base). LIke seriously... lets advertise where all the females are! and this one I was in the tent by myself bec there were no other girls... not that I'm not tough, I am, I can handle myself, but still, the tent shouldnt be singled out like that!
(below- The dumbest idea the army had).

We did so much trng i'm trying to remember all the stuff we did... it was crazy... long days some days.
I'm really comfortable with my m16 now though, I can fully take it apart and clean it all by myself no problem, I'm really comfortable shooting it. I shot more the past month that I previously had in my entire CG career, so that was cool.
well i think thats all the highlights i have time for right now... i'll try to remember more later...

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

OMG we made it through!



So today... The 6 coasties made it through FT. DIX A-25 pre-deployment training... We just played army for over a month and OMG are we glad to be done!! I have lots of stories and photos to share with everyone, but dont have time to get the pics and blog right this second, but i'll try to get it up this wkd...
it feels so weird to not be locked down anymore... got a little bit of time before i'm gone and locked down for 6 full months in theater..

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Pre-Deployment Trng at FT. DIX

(Above- post egress)
(Above- me getting in the gunner's harness...)
(above- Mike and I post trng, he saved my butt)
So most of you know I left DC for my pre-deployment training. It's been busy, I dont have much time to check email, but I wanted to post some pictures from the HEAT trainer yesterday, our team went through HUMVEE Rollover training, it was pretty crazy. I was the unlucky gunner position which is the position that isnt strapped in and if your team doesnt hold onto you, then you go flying all around inside... here are a few pics...

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Just read....



I took this photo today of a memorial of a bunch of old war letters...

man... what a powerful love letter... almost made me cry to read it...

Monday, September 14, 2009

riding the plane down is not so fun...

video


When the green light comes on... this is NOT the view you want to see =(
Sadly unable to see the dz at all... we had to ride the plane down! I havent ridden the plane down in over a year! Luckily the clouds broke up enough the rest of the day to get some good jumps in, and the sky was GORGEOUS with the clouds, I have some really cool video of the sky yesterday with these clouds, me flying around them =) when I get some more time i'll try to post that stuff tonite...

But for now... I'm off to report in to my pre-deployment training! Wish me luck!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Good bye DC...

So I packed up and left DC this weekend... PRE-Deployment training starts monday am...
I'm starting off in Portsmouth, VA... but will be at a few different places through now and December...
I"ll try to keep everybody updated through trng and before i actually go to Afghanistan...
thanks everyone for the well wishes! I'm excited!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

BOOOOOOGIE


(ABOVE- Rick's 1000th!)

So this long wkd was an awesome boogie for Carol Clay's Birthday! I got 19 jumps in... it was SUPER crowded but way fun, we got in Rick's 1000th jump!! check out the video below from Braden's camera, i'll try to post mine as well...

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Not a bad wkd of jumping...

(above-Belly flyers- myself, Carol, Dara, Jason, and ANDREW, hangers- Pete, Corey and Brett)
So above is a Hybrid we did for Andrews 100th jump! Go Andrew...

And today we did John's 700th...
a total of 13 for me this wkd... not bad not bad...
whew, i'm beat... now time for some time in the ijoy and then to bed!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Whew... the tour is over...


UPDATE... PIC taken by Irwin Photographer Steve Kifer and was on the front page of the Irwin Paper!




Man oh man, was that a busy two weeks with the 257 Army Band! It honestly was a blast though, the patriotism at each place we performed was amazing and it was great to be a part of the spirit.
I've uploaded a lot of the video to youtube, so just check out my youtube page.

Above, is Sing, King, Swing at Brevard College in NC, and below is Saxophobia



As soon as I get pics from John I'll post them up too =)

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Kick off of the tour...

So tonite was the kick off performance of the 2week tour for the 257th Army Band... John and I were brought on as dancers to add some entertainment to part of the show...
above you can see our attempted costume of WWII theme... and below you can see the video... of our first time performing it... we perform almost every nite in the next two weeks, so hopefully it gets better and better, (we still have a few things to work out) but not too bad, we were pretty happy considering we had such few practices to put it all together... the crowd seemed to really like us!

Monday, June 29, 2009

7 yrs and 508 jumps until...

My FIRST CUTAWAY...
yep... had my first one this Saturday... AND Since I was videoing an AFF student I have it all on video... as soon as I have time to dl the video i'll post it up here...
Thanks everyone for spending hours helping me look for my main. SOOOOOO happy we found everything!



raw footage above...

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

500 Baby!!





UPDATE: HERE's the SLIDESHOW of ALL the PICS!!



So.... FINALLY after all the hold ups, of bad weather, trips to the ER, blah blah... , I was able to make my 500th jump this past Saturday. And it rocked, I was really lucky I had a great group of friends. And Michael was even able to make it on the jump, (though against my better judgment, he jumped with a torn bicep tendon... tsk tsk tsk, which he is now sitting in surgery for, and i'm in the waiting room blogging... ) but he was DETERMINED to be on that jump with me, I couldn't stop him, luckily it all went well, we made it through the points TWICE! and no one got hurt! So I couldn't have asked for a better jump! Thanks everyone!
oh and thanks for the fabulous pie filling that i'm STILL cleaning out of my ears and clothes!!! omg!!

Give me a little bit and i'll add some video and all the pics in a slide show... here's a quick shot of what Corey did... but I still have to DL the video from my helmet =)


Yay for me...

I passed the exam! I officially am a Certified Personal Trainer!!! I'll be working at MP location of VIDA on various nites... sooooo excited that i've added this cert to my resume...

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day Casa Boogie...


So this wkd... the weather cooperated for 2 of the 4 day wkd... I got 15 jumps in and Mike got 12... not too bad! a little bummed that I didn't get my 500 in this wkd... but thats ok...
I have video I want to post... but let me play around with some video editing and see what I can put together...
Thanks Rick for jumping with us all wkd and helping mike get thrown right into 4way!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

When the rain ruins our day...skydivers will still play...

So this wkd, the rain pretty much took all our jumping fun away, we did get a few loads in the fireball (cessna)... I got one in, where Brett just watched me spin on my back trying to go into a sitfly... but we did learn that JoAnn and I are on the exact same jump number... pretty cool...

Jo... we better watch out, I heard Jason is gonna pie the hell outta us next wkd when we hit 500!

but anyways... instead we cooked and got our hair cut,... thanks Jarod!! u rok!

next weekend will definitely be full of jumpin our asses off though!!!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Mike's A license jump!!!


ABOVE- VIDEO OF MIKE'S 25th Jump..

So I got to do like half of Michael's coach jumps, and got to do his 25th ... and thanks to Rick (who gave mike a little tip) I got to go for a little ride and then I took Mike for a little ride too... (sorry Jason, I know we're not supposed to goof off until jump 26... but i swear i didnt tell him to hold onto me... i'm blaming rick for that one!)

Awesome job!
Congrats Michael... you know how proud I am... this rocks... we're gonna have such a good time now that you have your license! This is only the BEGINNING...

dude... sooooo funny... jason and I totally struck a pose behind jim sleeping!! haha
*** UPDATE*** oh i forgot to say... this was a wkd of firsts... mike's first casa jump, my first camera helmet jump, and first time with our new camper! they all rocked! i'll post some more video from some jumps this wkd, and hopefully get some pics of our awesome camper! dude... skydiving rocks!! (and YES... we brought BEER for all those!)

Another one of mike's videos:

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

HONOR FLIGHT....


Above- LT Tongol, USCG and Homer "Mac" McCown, 92, ARMY AIR CORPS group engineering, Middle/East/North Africa/Italy Jan 12, 1942-July 31st, 1945.

11APRIL2009
On 11apr2009, a group of 32 Ohio Veterans were flown to Washington D.C. after my hometown high school raised money for their travel on what is now know as the "Honor Flight."

The Honor Flight Network, flies veterans to see their memorials at no cost. This particular flight flew WWII veterans from central Ohio to see the memorial of which none had seen before.

After my mother forwarded me the article and information of the group coming from my home town, I knew I had to be there at the memorial when they arrived. On the morning of the Honor Flight, it was nothing but thunderstorms and pouring rain, but I put on my uniform and walked from my DC apt to the WWII memorial and waited in the rain to meet the Veterans, as you can see the rain did nothing to our spirits, it was all smiles and joy when they arrived. It was a humbling experience to watch them all see the memorial for the first time, and it was definitely a reminder of why I joined the service myself...

Above is a picture of me with the oldest of the Veterans...

I was also told that when the Veterans returned home to Ohio, there was a large crowd awaiting their return to welcome them home as they deserve! God Bless them all... we all should take a little time to honor those that served before us, for this Country.

Monday, April 27, 2009

We love you Frankie...



A sad day in the lindy hop world today... the legend, the inspiration, the one and only Frankie Manning Passed away...
We will never forget you Frankie...

Friday, April 24, 2009

Time for a change...



Who's that girl???

yep... that's me ;)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Congrats Erika and Kevin

My best friend growing up found out that her 2nd child is going to be a baby girl!

Congrats Erika! So happy for you!
I love you!!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Making Choices...

So over the past couple years, my list of hobbies grew substantially from only skydiving... to skydiving, dancing, working out, triathlons/racing... and wanting to compete in all three...

With being a full time Coast Guard Officer, I really was stretching myself thin... but I thought I could do it all. The truth is, I was half-assing all three... not being able to focus 100% on competing in either, I was "good" at all of them, but not in the top like I want.

I raced, and while in 1 triathlon I was 1 second out of first for my age group, that was the closest I got... and in dancing I am just staying at the solid int/adv level, (which is still awesome and a lot of fun) but not devoting time to go to enough events to get better. Skydivng I was able compete locally and do well, but again not at the level I dreamed of...

So really, I would LOVE to be able to be incredible at all three and compete Nationally at all three and do well, it is just NOT possible, so something's gotta give... I gotta choose...

SO... this year, as most of you probably already guessed, I am choosing skydiving. No more dance wkds, no more racing... this year I'm focusing on skydiving. I want to go to nationals and I want that next level. It's hard, because I LOVE dancing, but I've decided that I can be ok with just social dancing weekly. And racing, while I love the feeling of finishing a race, I can't keep a training schedule that is feasible with the classes I already teach... so... choice made...

Lindy Hop, Racing-->back burner for now...
Skydiving is it...

and I'm thankful Michael now is involved and loves the sport too...

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

5-way video...



So Jason passed along a video of a 5-way we did a few weeks ago at sunset =)
I'm the one that comes down to the formation after everyone (because I dove out after them)... not bad.... a little shaky at times... but not bad

Sunday, April 5, 2009

For the Record...

It sucks being stuck in your own car with your car keys and not being able to start the car bec some random alarm that you didn't even know the car had starts going off and doesn't let your own car key start the car!!!

OMG!!!!! seriously

other than that.. pretty awesome wkd.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Why I do what I do...

Today after I taught my POWER class at VIDA, one of the girls who has been taking my class regularly came up to me in the locker room and said, "Hey, I just want you to know that I love your class! It's my favorite part of the week, I look forward to it all day long!"

She also was excited that she was seeing results from taking the class.

It made me feel so good to hear that. It gives me such a boost of energy and motivation to keep teaching when students come up and tell me they enjoy my teaching and classes.

So thanks guys! I keep teaching because you guys are awesome!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Boston Tea Party 2009

(ABOVE- Mike and I)

So this past weekend I was in Danvers, MA for BOSTON TEA PARTY. Just like last year, it was a lot of fun. The competitions were great, honestly the Jack and Jill Crossover was one of the funniest things I've ever seen... watching it was seriously a good time.

Sadly, I didn't get as many pictures as last year =( Also, sadly, while last year I made finals in the jack and jill, this year I did not... oh well... not too disappointed bec I actually thought I danced well. so no biggie. I'll definitely be back again next year...

I took the Solo Jazz routine class with Andy and Nina and really enjoyed it, and realized I really do need to squeeze a Jazz class in to improve my dancing (and its fun!).
Mike came up from Rhode Island and took a few classes himself.
All in all, the DC representation was awesome, there were DC folks everywhere.

Monday, March 23, 2009

My Cousin Becca...

So this is my younger cousin Becca... singing at her Senior Nite..

gosh Becca I remember when we were all running around in our little swim suits as babies in Michigan... and now you're graduating high school... crazy!
Awesome! You rock!


Sunday, March 22, 2009

Awesome weekend...

ABOVE- Jason's 3000's!!
BELOW- the FJC students (and Jason who taught the course next to Mike......aww... Mike standin out in his bright CG shirt! ;)


ABOVE- Mike's FIRST JUMP EVER!!

Did 7 jumps on saturday! it was cold as crap, my hands went numb twice! but it was still awesome..

oh and Mike did his Cat A and Cat B!!! he rocked it, freakin awesome... i hear a new skydiver in our midst... =) yep... he's stuck with us (and me... ) forever now!

and we did an amazing jump for Jason the pilot... it was his 3000th hr of flight and his 3000th jump! all in the same Load... he flew us up to altitude, put his rig on, and another pilot took over and he jumped out, he made his 3000th hr after 6 minutes of that flight and then jumped out to make his 3000... omg we got like 18,500ft too... (that's the highest i've ever jumped! it was freakin awesome)

pics of all to be posted soon...

too tired right now...




Sunday, March 8, 2009

A beautiful Saturday...


ROLLIN into the parking lot of the DZ just after 9am... and this is what we see... GORGEOUS!!! perfect sky, perfect temp, no winds! OMG...
Yesterday the air was so amazing... just beautiful. I can't even describe it. All day, it was like butter, gliding through, so smooth, it was just an awesome beautiful BLUE SKY skydiving day.
I got 8 in! And I even packed for myself and didnt slow myself down, so I was happy with myself for keeping up with folks!
I met some awesome new folks yesterday too... thanks JoAnn for all the email arranging and the carpooling. Can't wait for all the fun this season!
Below are some pics of me waiting for sunset load... don't worry I remembered to put my rig on fully after that first pic...

(BELOW- sun goin down... me waitin on the plane... we ended the day with a pretty good 5-way, i can post the video once jason sends it to me!)
(BELOW- wheres the plane?wheres the plane?... we wanna jump!!)


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

My annual sweets fast....

So today is Ash Wednesday... the start of Lent for Christians. As a Catholic I find this time of year brings me back to the Church if I've gone astray a little. I give up sweets every year... and so again this year, today marks the start of no chocolate, candy, ice cream or anything of the sort, for me!
And since most of you know how BIG of a sweet tooth I have, its a pretty big deal. I usually lose a few lbs over lent because of the amount of sugar decrease in my diet.

So... what else are folks giving up for Lent?

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Red Dress Ball...



(Above- Charlie and I dancing ...)
(Above- Ben and I)

(Above- Charlie and I)

So on Valentines Day, there was a RED DRESS BALL at Glen Echo. The ballroom was filled with red dresses galore! It was quite a sight. And the gentlemen all looked great, as most were dressed up in suits and red shirts. It was a lot of fun...

Ben has a few more pics HERE

Thursday, February 5, 2009

POWER is here

So TUESDAY we launched POWER at VIDA at the METROPOLE location. It was awesome. We taught back to back classes that were absolutely packed to capacity. I was totally sore wednesday, but it was worth it. The first class I taught with Adriane and Ty, the second class I taught with Adriane and Lauren.... so much fun!

Wednesday nite I taught my first full POWER class that nite. It was fun, I had a pretty full class, I hope people keep coming back!

The sad part is, We forgot the camera and so no pictures from the launch =(
so sad considering how cute we looked in our matching outfits!

So right now my schedule at Metropole is POWER on tuesday's at 1800 and POWER on Wednesday's at 1915

Friday, January 30, 2009

Pre-launch of POWER

So last nite was our "preview" of POWER at VIDA. Juliet, Ed and I were the team taught at Metropole. It was a lot of fun. We had cute little outfits (i'll get a better picture on tuesday from the big launch). But the class was great, full class! and we had lots of fun!

More to come on TUESDAY when the BIG LAUNCH happens!!

POWER is coming....

Sunday, January 25, 2009

TCO at Glen Echo....24JAN09

So last nite was a typical Saturday Nite for the local DC lindy hoppers. Tom Cunningham Orchestra rockin it out at the Spanish Ballroom at Glen Echo. As always, good times. Here's some videos, Charlie and I just goofin off =) and Ben and I for some reason went into the jam and here's what we ended up doing... a little silly entrance but hey... we got some laughs!

BEN and I...



CHARLIE and I....






(ABOVE- DEB and ME)

(ABOVE- Jerry, Me, Ben)

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

First Prize...

Soooooo, tonite's Jam Cellar Dance was a Black and White Ball. Everyone came all dressed up in their finest. The JC crew decided to have a Jack and Jill comp for the special nite. I entered because I figured what the hey, and the Prize was a WHITE CHOCOLATE replica of the Capitol!! I SO wanted it....
Luck was on my side tonite, because I randomly drew Doug, which of course gave us a LIL bit of an advantage than the other 6 couples, Lily and Kevin gave us a good run for our money though!.

Result: WE WON! =) and I, of course, fought Doug for the chocolate hehe.

UPDATE:
Just got these emailed to me from last nite... Jerry and I, and Doug and I, before the dancing begun...

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Pics from Squeak...

(ABOVE- Ben and Me doing a cheesy dance move which is why we're laughing)
(ABOVE- Ben and Me exiting the Jam Circle)

(ABOVE- Dave and I...Swinging Out!)

(BELOW- The COOL DIPS!)


So, Jennr8r brings Squeak and Mrs. Squeak out to Glen Echo last Saturday for the dance. Squeak is a skydiver from Australia, who Jenn and I know from dropzone.com, and no, we still dont know his actual name, he just says ... call me Squeak. Squeak and Mrs. Squeak were good sports, they watched, they danced, had a good time, and Squeak was nice enough to take pictures =). Which I thought was cool, because I hardly ever get pictures of me dancing. He mostly took pics of me dancing with Ben and Dave.