So my normal day is so boring I just had to call a news station. Once the kids were fed and napped I called the reporter back on her cell phone and she wanted me to come to the base gate for an interview. I asked Jason if this would reflect badly on him and he said no. He asked me why I wanted to talk to the news and I said because it was something fun and different.

When I got to the Visitor Center parking lot like 5 news stations bombarded me. I felt bad for the Channel 7 lady I had been talking with, but I know how the business works, I was an intern with both Channel 13 and Channel 45 in Baltimore back in college.

I was not about to tell them the part about how we didn't listen to stay inside the first time we were told. Guess blogging it doesn't help either Haha. A Lt. Colonel was there the whole time monitoring my interview. I hope I didn't sound like an idiot. Probably did. Even the Baltimore Sun was there. Look for me in Google tomorrow!

Ok so one day with no Internet shopping, and the Commissary was actually interesting.

Oh, and the "large cats" were only seen in two places...residential housing AND near the commissary. We were just as safe in either place. Each place had a high cougar mauling potential!
Get your news right here boys and girls, that's right there is a cougar on Andrews AFB; possibly even two according to Public Affairs. Just as the whole family was leaving for the Commissary around 11:30 this morning a Security Forces car drove by blasting a message at us telling us to stay in our car our go back inside until we are told to do otherwise. Jason, sensing it was just another exercise people on base had to go through said "well we'll stay inside once we are at the Commissary".

Security was at the Commissary by the time we got there, frantically telling people to get inside. Right after we got in, we went in lockdown mode. The Commissary is one of my least favorite places to be, let alone be locked in there! At least the place was empty and no one was getting in...we had the place to ourselves. Then over the loudspeaker we hear "Attention Commissary patrons, for your own safety your are being kept in the Commissary. We have been informed that a large cougar is on the premises." At least we were at the beginning of the trip. I felt bad for the people who had paid for their groceries and were trying to leave.

I was passing the watermelons and joked to Jason that it was probably just John Cougar Mellencamp running around loose on base. Irony struck hard as John Cougar Mellencamp came on the loudspeaker muzak station.

At least I made the best of it, telling people in the aisles to "move it, cougar coming through!" I made several other cougar comments that kept the elderly population and stockers somewhat amused.

Still even more amused, I decided to call people. My mother would see the humor in it since she LOVES the Commissary and knows I loathe it. Then for kicks I called the local news, by then we had been in lockdown for about 45 minutes. They were on it and a reporter called me back to get more scoop. Leslie Cook from Channel 7 news told me that according to the Public Affairs Office there were 2 large cats of some kind, which was interesting because they had just started to let people out of the building again. She wanted to interview me, but was not being let onto the base. We had two kids that needed lunch and naps so there was no way I was going to go off base.

Wow, so much more exciting then buying endless whale supplies online today!

Will the cougars decide to eat the President as he boards Air Force One? PLEASE!!!

STAY TUNED.........
Have you ever tried to plan a whale themed birthday party for a 3 year old? It is not easy my friends. Thank goodness for the Internet! I found some under the sea themed paper products that had a killer whale on them, and remembered that Carvel had a Fudgie the Whale Cake back from when I was little. Guess what? They still do. Rock on!

Whale invitations, ordering my own from Snapfish. I love Snapfish.

Whale themed party favors? Ordered from several places on the Internet.

Awesome WHALE gifts for the birthday boy from Otter Bay Gifts.

But I continue to go overboard with the coup de grĂ¢ce being the newley re-designed whale themed bedroom. Thanks to Ikea, Decalzone, Not overboard yet? How about a personalized handmade comforter featuring whales, dolphins and manatees; panels by Ebay, made by this lady. I throw myself into my children's hobbies. I have no life...but at least I have whales.

Yes we saw whales. We even ate dinner right next to whales. How was it? It was cool to see Connor's reaction to the whales, but I kinda felt wierd about cheering for these animals. Granted, they have the best life for caged animals, but I did not hear ANY fricking conservation message while I was there. Maybe I just missed it everytime I turned the corner. Whatever. Connor was thrilled.

As for our swim with manatees, here is a lesson boys and girls: manatees hang out at Crystal River from November through March, then they swim out to sea in April, then a few decide to come back in May. What time did we go there? April. Every other time I have done this there were so many manatees you were tripping over them. We saw a few from the boat but everytime the captain stopped and got in with them, they swam off. *sob...sniff...sob* Connor DID get to snorkel and see fishies though and he KICKED ASS at snorkeling. See!

This kid had been practicing in the bath tub with the mask and snorkel for weeks and it paid off. Connor had a dive suit on, and a padded Finding Nemo suit on over it. He floated perfectly and swam around face down breathing through the snorkel like a pro. He kept yelling "Connor do it!" and getting away from us to do it on his own! He is TWO people! Wow. He rocks.

Hopefully we were saving all of our marine mammal luck for whale watching this summer in Gloucester. *wink*

Connor also went on a GIANT slide. Scared the piss out of him, but he did it twice.

Giant Slide

Connor pissing himself

I had to deal with the harsh realities of having an 8 month-old baby on vacation: she is STILL 8 months when you go on vacation. Nap times were messed up, she got a cold...and a fever, breastfeeding on a boat with a wet suit on sucks, Alanna can't go on a speedboat and last but not least...Jason can't breastfeed. I spent a bunch of time in the room with a book while Alanna napped. Oh well, It can only get better from here since she will only get older. Yea! She posed nicely for pictures though. Hollywood watch out!

So all in all it was good. Florida is where it's at. We miss it already.
We did it! We made it through an awful surgery, a PAINFUL recovery and days of bombardment by relatives! Now we get to go to Florida. WOOOHOO! Frankly I think we deserve it.

Alanna's baptisim went really well. One of those odd times when so many things that could have gone wrong...didn't. Everyone got onto the base ok, lunch at the Officer's Club was fun, the baptism itself was easy (Alanna cooed and laughed through it) and everyone headed back to our house for light snacks and alcohol. Everyone got along (that day at least). Every one of Connor and Alanna's cousins were there and were playing together, amazing.

The rest of the family visits went well for the most part too. Getting 15 people including babies and strollers through the DC Metro system for Smithsonian trips and restaurant outings was a chore though. Yea it's over!

We fly out to the Tampa area tomorrow morning. Wish us luck! Will have a full report on manatees and Killer Whales when I return.