Tag Archives: Happy Holidays

What can we do for our troops? 2015

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Are you wondering, “What can I do for the troops?”

Problem solved…

Soldiers’ Angels – Sign up and “adopt” a service member and send socks, baby powder, lip balm, flip flops, sleep pants, shaving cream, toothbrushes and toothpaste, books, and more.

Operation Paperback – This organization “collects gently used books nationwide and sends them to American troops overseas as well as veterans and military families here at home.”

Ebooks for Troops – Provides e-books to military personnel deployed overseas. You can also donate a used Kindle.

Books for Soldiers – You can donate books, DVDs, and games.

Send a cuppa joe to a Joe (or Jane)

Green Beans Coffee is so easy – it takes only a couple minutes – you can spend just $2 ($2!) and send a great cup of coffee to a service member overseas. Connect with Green Beans Coffee on Facebook.

Just send a note – zero dollars

The USO has a page that allows you to send a note, and it won’t cost you a cent.

Or you can Act Now to help with a monetary contribution.

Wounded Warriors

What a worthy cause. Helping our Wounded Warriors live a better life.

Copied from their site – “To raise awareness and enlist the public’s aid for the needs of injured service members. To help injured service members aid and assist each other. To provide unique, direct programs and services to meet the needs of injured service members.”

Make a one-time donation to Wounded Warriors.

Remember what our warriors have done for you. What will you do for our troops this holiday season?

Stock and Roberts, Iraq, 2009-2010

 

6 Comments

Filed under For The Troops, Special Events

The spirit of Christmas glides home on a Flexible Flyer

flex flyerTwo young boys, huffing and puffing, drag a Flexible Flyer up worn wooden steps, banging and scraping. The boys are dressed like dark woolen snowmen from their watch-capped heads to their rubber snow boots.

Mother stands over Little Sister, dressing her for the occasion – knitted cap tied under chin with a scarf, multi-layered clothing, and hand-me-down boots.

The three siblings slurged through heavy snow in the driveway, passed the mint and white Chrysler with its push-button start, into the snow drifts. These children are on a mission!

They trudged a couple hundred yards – past the monkey ball trees – until they set foot on the school grounds, then round the back to the dumpsters.

The Christmas tree adorned the large lobby of Lora Little Elementary School. After final classes marking winter break, the tree was dragged from the lobby and tossed unceremoniously out the loading dock doors. The tree is forlorn now, marked by several bent and broken branches and bent and wrinkled tinsel.flex close up

True to the elementary school tradition, this tree is twelve feet tall and wide as a 1950s Buick. The Flexi Flyer is a scant few feet long, but none of the logistics mattered. If they did not rescue the tree, they would have no tree.

The three siblings dragged the tree past the sledding hill where one brother would break his leg, past the weed-choked fence where the other brother would contract poison oak, past the school’s towering metal and chain swing set where sister would jump, fly!, and dislocate her elbow.

Out of the schoolyard and down the home street, sliding down the driveway, around the house and into the back yard.

Much like Paul Bunyan, Older Brother dispatched his Boy Scout ax from its leather pouch and commenced to chop the tree to a manageable height so it would fit into the rec room.

They set the tree in a teeny, dented tree stand.  They re-arranged the leftover tinsel then added their own stored decorations. Delicate, paint-flaked ornaments with misshapen hooks, delicately and laboriously placed upon bent and broken branches, until the tree brought the spirit of Christmas into the home.

early christmas - Copy

15 Comments

Filed under Special Events

Honoring our military, past and present

Yaronczyk photoThis holiday season

Every year I post a series of blogs around the holidays to honor our armed forces – both past and present.

Instead of a series of blogs, I decided to provide resources early on – before Thanksgiving – so y’all can find and choose a military-related way to support our troops this holiday season.

I’m always near an Air Force Base

While I lived in Albuquerque, NM, I often visited the Starbuck’s a couple blocks away from the AFB. If I found myself in line ahead of a service member, I would offer to buy his/her cup of coffee. Such a teensy sacrifice for me – but a small price to pay for all their sacrifices.

I find myself in Minot, ND, home to Minot Air Force Base. And again, I’m often in line ahead of a service member. I have bought a cuppa, a bag a chips and a soda, a sandwich, a breakfast treat…for whatever service member is near me when I’m checking out.

Try it – it feels good.R. LAIRD, USAF

Support military family businesses

I support family businesses of military wives, husbands, and active military.

Last year, I had my computer scrubbed by Geoffrey VanDyck, now in Colorado Springs. If you need great, reasonably-priced computer service, contact Geoffrey.

Nelly Hernandez Photography – In Minot, ND – fabulous family and kid photos!

The English Rose – Beautiful custom-made pens and pencils. Idea – a great give-a-way for writers!

Not near a military base?

No problem! There are loads of organizations that send books and scads of other needed items to our troops.

KristiSoldiers’ Angels – Sign up and “adopt” a service member and send socks, baby powder, lip balm, flip flops, sleep pants, shaving cream, toothbrushes and toothpaste, books, and more.

Operation Paperback – This organization “collects gently used books nationwide and sends them to American troops overseas as well as veterans and military families here at home.”

Ebooks for Troops – Provides e-books to military personnel deployed overseas. You can also donate a used Kindle.

Books for Soldiers – You can donate books, DVDs, and games.

Send a cuppa joe to a Joe (or Jane)

Green Beans Coffee is so easy – it takes only a couple minutes – you can spend just $2 ($2!) and send a great cup of coffee to a service member overseas. Connect with Green Beans Coffee on Facebook.

Just send a note – zero dollars Kenton Iraq 1

The USO has a page that allows you to send a note, and it won’t cost you a cent.

Or you can Act Now to help with a monetary contribution.

Holiday mail for heroes

Try the Red Cross – Holiday Mail for Heroes.

You can mail cards or letters to –

Holiday Mail for Heroes

P.O. Box 5456

Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456

Wounded Warriors

What a worthy cause. Helping our Wounded Warriors live a better life.

Copied from their site – “To raise awareness and enlist the public’s aid for the needs of injured service members. To help injured service members aid and assist each other. To provide unique, direct programs and services to meet the needs of injured service members.”

Make a one-time donation to Wounded Warriors.

Remember what our warriors have done for you. What will you do for our troops this holiday season?

***

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6 Comments

Filed under For The Troops, Personal Articles, Special Events

The spirit of Christmas glides home on a Flexible Flyer

early christmasTwo young boys, huffing and puffing, drag a Flexible Flyer up worn wooden steps, banging and scraping. The boys are dressed like dark woolen snowmen from their watch-capped heads to their rubber snow boots.

Mother stands over Little Sister, dressing her for the occasion – knitted cap tied under chin with a scarf, multi-layered clothing, and hand-me-down boots.

The three siblings slurged through heavy snow in the driveway, passed the mint and white Chrysler with its push button start, into the snow drifts.

They trudged a few hundred yards – past the monkey ball trees – until they set foot on the school grounds, then round the back to the dumpsters.

The Christmas tree had adorned the large lobby of Lora Little Elementary School. After final classes marking winter break, the tree was dragged from the lobby and tossed unceremoniously out the loading dock doors. The tree is forlorn now, marked by several bent and broken branches and bent and wrinkled tinsel.

True to the elementary school tradition, this tree is twelve feet tall and wide as a 1950s Buick. The Flexi Flyer is a scant few feet long, but none of the logistics mattered. If they did not rescue the tree, they would have no tree.

The three siblings dragged the tree past the sledding hill where one brother would break his leg, past the weed-choked fence where the other brother would contract poison oak, past the school’s towering metal and chain swing set where sister would jump, fly!, and dislocate her elbow.

Out of the schoolyard and down the home street, sliding down the driveway, around the house and into the back yard.

Much like Paul Bunyan, Older Brother dispatched his Boy Scout ax from its leather pouch and commenced to chop the tree to a manageable height so it would fit into the rec room.

They set the tree in a teeny, dented tree stand.  They re-arranged the leftover tinsel then added their own stored decorations. Delicate, paint-flaked ornaments with misshapen hooks, delicately and laboriously placed upon bent and broken branches, until the tree brought the spirit of Christmas into the home.

17 Comments

Filed under Prose & Poetry, Special Events

Holidays and kids are picture perfect

Stacy Van Dyck 1Stacy VanDyck is an Air Force wife, mom, and photographer (husband Geoffrey was featured yesterday) and works out of her home at the Minot Air Force Base.

Stacy Van Dyck 2

Stacy VanDyck Photography is a member of the Pictures of Hope Foundation. The Pictures of Hope Foundation is a charitable organization of professional photographers who provide complimentary photography sessions to babies in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit who are not quite ready to come home.

Stacy Van Dyck 3

Connect with Stacy at her website or on Facebook.

Stacy Van Dyck 4

6 Comments

Filed under Guest Writers & Bloggers

Minot AFB holiday-light-geek-out!

Geoffrey VanDyck of VanDyck Computers –

Geoffrey is an instructor of Technology and Military Science with the United States Air Force. And he is a great computer fixer-upper! He and his wife Stacy live at Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota.

Geoffrey programmed his house with holiday lights and music. Amazing videos!

Wizards in Winter by Trans-Siberian Orchestra

Or, if you prefer, Wish Liszt by T-SO –

Connect with Geoffrey and find computer maintenance tips and other helpful info at his blog (VanDyck Computers on blogspot) and on Facebook at VanDyck Computers.

Stay tuned – tomorrow I feature Stacy VanDyck Photography.

6 Comments

Filed under Guest Writers & Bloggers

A very military Christmas

Iraq, December, 2009 (Kenton is bottom left)

Iraq, December, 2009 (Kenton is bottom left)

All Air Force!

While gathering Holiday Week guests and posts, I saw a pattern emerge – all military, all Air Force people! My son is Air Force, so I’ll add my own Christmas story at the end of this Holiday theme week.

What can I do?

If you are wondering what you can do for our military members this holiday and beyond, it’s never too late.

www.soldiersangels.org

www.operationpaperback.org

www.booksforsoldiers.com

www.ebooksfortroops.org

Adam and Kenton in Iraq

Adam and Kenton in Iraq

Green Beans Coffee

And this one is so easy – it takes only a couple minutes – you can spend just $2 ($2!) and send a great cup of coffee to a service member overseas.

Connect with Green Beans Coffee on Facebook.

Photo by David Yaronczyk

Photo by David Yaronczyk

11 Comments

Filed under For The Troops, Special Events