Thursday, August 27, 2009

Phase 1 Complete

Alright, alright, alright! So I am not the most consistent blogger in the world and I have been slacking. SORRY!

Anywho, I finished primary flight training about a month ago and selected helicopters (helos). I start that training on October 1st and am very excited to get going. As far as finishing, I was #1 in my class and astounded most instructors being able to do that with a ginormous family but it all turned out good for me cause I got my first choice and we get to stay here for a while longer. After training, we will probably end up back in San Dog (Diego) for my first sea tour. Yippee... back out to sea I go. We plan on living what we preach and living in a large travel trailer for at least a year to get out of debt and have some freedom of movement. Impossible you say? The Grahams, a family of 7, are doing it right now and have 0 complaints!

The adventure continues...

The mystery of Legos

Yesterday I spent about 5 hours building Legos with my boys. It is amazing how the time just ceases to exist when you are building, dismantling, digging through the bucket, etc. I just have one question. What strange law of nature makes it so that you can dig and dig and dig through a large bucket of legos and see none of the piece you want? Then later, dig and dig and dig for a different piece and see 200 of the piece you couldn't find before?


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Homemaker Calculus

I am always amazed at my wife's ability to get a bazillion dollars worth of groceries on the cheap. We go into the store, all the items pass the laser scanner, and usually the cashier looks up and says, "Your total is $4,025,55.98." My wife smarmishly states she has coupons and the cashier's eyes bulge as the 5 ton dump truck (which strangely fits into the check out area) unloads leaflets from every imaginable source. This is where the fun begins.

Most times, the coupons have some sort of hiccup; they either don't scan or there is uncertainty as to whether the store can do what my wife is trying to explain. At this point, the cashier gets a lesson in math that is not taught anywhere on the planet, what I call Homemaker Calculus (that is a registered trademark of mine so don't take it)! Mel starts talking by-one-get-one, dollar off, free, buy ten get $5 off, something about laws of congress and the constitution, the gold souk in Dubai, and the space shuttle. I stopped trying to understand almost at the beginning. I have had 6 semesters of math in college and I still don't get it.

Consequently, the manager is summoned because the cashier's head has exploded. Sometimes the manager just says, "Yep, she can do that," and does some cash register magic for it to work. Other times, the manager calls the corporate office, who calls the governor, who calls the Navy, who has an emergency briefing with the President to try and figure this out. I would not be surprised if the Vatican got involved to try and get some supernatural help.

After all this fun, the new cashier rings up the total and it comes to $2.55. On the bottom of the receipt it shows we saved $4 million and some change. I have told Mel, and lots of our friends, that this almost feels like stealing. Mel makes it seem so easy as she calmly tries to explain it to me. I guess it is a good thing only a few highly trained, covert experts know this system or all grocery stores and manufacturers would soon be out of business. For now, I am content to be one of the ignorant masses.