Back when I was your age
I've been noticing things on the news. They are changing society and that's all well and good, but they are also changing the phrases we will use when we get old. Like Pluto not being a planet anymore. (Should I capitalize pluto still?) That leads you to "Back when I was your age, Pluto was still a planet!"
Yesterday I saw in the news a recent study that sitting up straight is bad for your back. Enter, "Back when I was your age, sitting up straight was good for ya!"
What's next?
Popularity vs. Competence
Here is an article if you haven't seen one already stacking up the most popular politicians 1-20. They can't exactly poll presidential hopefuls because not too many are officially running yet. But that's what this is.

So, disregarding popularity and looking to competence, here's who should throw their hat in the ring.

Phil Jackson
Tom (from MySpace)
Whoever is responsible for the iPod

It does make me smile though to see Kerry dead last on the list.
A couple hours old

Playing hide and seek

Yay for birthday cake!

Happy Birthday Judah! We look forward with anticipation to watch you grow. You are such a joy. Maybe you could ease up on the eating though. Daddy doesn't have time for a second job right now! We love you so much!

Love, Daddy and Momma
Yes recruiters have an associated stigma. We lie. Recruiters are liars. That's the reputation that is out there.

**disclaimer, I don't lie to applicants, or parents, or influencers. First, it's wrong. As a Christian I believe it is wrong, and as an Airman I believe in integrity. Second, it would be counter-productive, because these kids come back after tech school and talk to their buddies. So if I had lied to them, they would come back and tell everyone I'm a liar, business goes way down. Third, it would be futile. The internet has all the information you need (if you look hard enough) to answer your questions about the military. I get it all the time where a kid comes in and asks questions he already knows the answers to, just to see if I'll lie to him.**

So I'm making phone calls to recent high school graduates to see if they might be interested in joining, and people lie to me. I don't think they actually appreciate the irony either, that they are lying to a recruiter. I call this kid the other day, we'll call him Johnny. Sister picks up the phone and I ask if Johnny is there, she says yeah, hang on one minute. Then she walks over to Johnny and tells him he has a phone call, he asks who it is, she tells him it's some guy from the Air Force. He tells her to tell me that he isn't there. She puts the phone back up to her ear and tells me that he is still sleeping and can she take a message. I told her that my message would have been for her to tell Johnny that the Air Force called, but since she already told him that, she doesn't need to bother taking another message. Moral of the story is. . . if you are going to lie to the person on the other end of the phone, either hit the mute button or cover up the mouthpiece when you're talkin' to Johnny.
We had a great Thanksgiving. The food- great, the family and friends- great, the not having to do clean-up of anything after I finish my meal because it is a Hubbard family tradition (the men are on clean up) - totally awesome. It was so nice to sit after we had eaten and not do a thing. My husband rocks! The men did an amazing job- all the food was put away, dishes washed, dried and also put away.

So, yup, if anyone asks you if there is a God you can answer "yes there is" because you saw these pictures. There actually was a kitchen full of men doing post-Thanksgiving clean-up. I have it so good ....Andrea
All the Rage
We are so fashion-forward here at the Hubbard house. Watch for this on all the spring runways.....Andrea

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Sites set on the Military
I'm sure that whatever company you work for, you notice when they are in the news. So I notice when Congress starts talking about the military. Here's a couple of things to pop in your Google News browser:

Military Draft (also, see yesterday's post below)
Don't Ask, Don't Tell
Pentagon guidelines Homosexuality
Bring Troops Home

Should be an interesting session in Congress.

One response you absolutely must read is what Jack Army had to say about leaving the fight in the Middle East. I agree.
First round draft

Democrat representative Charles Rangel of N.Y. says that he will propose legislation for the implementation of a draft. Now, while I think that will never happen, a few things have come out of this statement. From what I can tell, most people are against a draft, some people are for it completely. And there is a rising majority that are calling for a mandatory service obligation. I've seen several different descriptions of such an obligation but most follow along these lines, with little variation. After graduation of high school, all mentally and physically stable graduates (or 18 year olds, whichever comes later) would be required to serve their country in some capacity for a minimum of 2 years. Service options would include any of the military branches, federal hospitals, and service oriented organizations like Americorps, or Peacecorps. A short list could be developed of legitimate organizations to choose from. After their service is complete, they can choose to stay on with said organization, or be given a college grant and encouraged to follow an academic route. Personally one change I would make is to nix the senior year of high school. Stop the average senior on the street and they will tell you that they are only taking 1 or 2 required classes. Furthermore, they typically have 1 or 2 study halls during their junior year. So realistically, they could start at 17, be done at 19 and move on to college. Also, during the 2 year service time, they could very easily achieve the same education they would have received during 1 year as a freshman in college. Those introductory core classes could still be taught part time, and in context of real life. How many students graduate college, but don't know how to file a tax return or supervise a group of subordinates. Believe me, as one who has and is taking college on the side. It would not be difficult to finish 1 years worth part time in 2 years. So, now we are left with a 19 year old ready for his sophomore year of college, but also has given back to his country. What do you think. Should there be a Full Military Draft, a Limited Service Obligation, or no change whatsoever?

the Box Store children
Where I live it's popular to hate what they call "box stores" (for those of you who like me didn't know what that means, a box store is one like Wal-Mart, Target, Best Buy, any corporate franchise store). The local issue with these stores is that they tend to drive out small businesses. Now here's my problem. If you hate them so much. . . STOP SHOPPING THERE. Because I do want to shop there and you're taking all the good parking spaces and clogging up the aisles. Either tell me that you don't like them, think they are evil and choose to stay away; or tell me that you do like them and go. And you know what, I like small businesses. I really do. And if a small business sells a product that I like better than a similar product sold at a large retail store, I will buy it at the small business. Key words being, "that I like better". A great big plus about small stores is that you can build a sense of community and establish a relationship with the proprietor/workers. I like that. So be creative and offer a product that I'm looking for. These big stores have been around for a while. They aren't going away, that much is obvious, so adapt your small business accordingly. And another tip, make sure your customers feel welcome and make sure your workers are establishing those relationships. It's the only advantage you have and the main reason most people will continue to come back. Of course, feel free to agree or disagree. Looking forward to your opinion.
I (Daniel) listen to a lot of preaching/forum speaking by Christian apologist Dr. Ravi Zacharias of RZIM. He quotes a poet by the name of Steve Turner and I want to share his writing. Here it is.


We believe in Marxfreudanddarwin.
We believe everything is OK
as long as you don't hurt anyone,
to the best of your definition of hurt,
and to the best of your knowledge.

We believe in sex before during
and after marriage.
We believe in the therapy of sin.
We believe that adultery is fun.
We believe that sodomy's OK
We believe that taboos are taboo.

We believe that everything's getting better
despite evidence to the contrary.
The evidence must be investigated.
You can prove anything with evidence.

We believe there's something in horoscopes,
UFO's and bent spoons;
Jesus was a good man just like Buddha
Mohammed and ourselves.
He was a good moral teacher although we think
his good morals were bad.

We believe that all religions are basically the same,
at least the one that we read was.
They all believe in love and goodness.
They only differ on matters of
creation sin heaven hell God and salvation.

We believe that after death comes The Nothing
because when you ask the dead what happens
they say Nothing.
If death is not the end, if the dead have lied,
then it's compulsory heaven for all
excepting perhaps Hitler, Stalin and Genghis Khan.

We believe in Masters and Johnson.
What's selected is average.
What's average is normal.
What's normal is good.

We believe in total disarmament.
We believe there are direct links between
warfare and bloodshed.
Americans should beat their guns into tractors
and the Russians would be sure to follow.

We believe that man is essentially good.
It's only his behaviour that lets him down.
This is the fault of society.
Society is the fault of conditions.
Conditions are the fault of society.

We believe that each man must find the truth
that is right for him.
Reality will adapt accordingly.
The universe will readjust. History will alter.
We believe that there is no absolute truth
excepting the truth that there is no absolute truth.

We believe in the rejection of creeds.

Steve Turner

Chuck Norris

Most of us have seen the some of the Chuck Norris jokes flying around the internet. I recently came across a good compilation of them. I will post a few at a time regularly, so keep checking back.

When the Boogeyman goes to sleep every night he checks his closet for Chuck Norris.

Chuck Norris can slam revolving doors.

Chuck Norris counted to infinity - twice.

Chuck Norris sleeps with a night light. Not because Chuck Norris is afraid of the dark, but the dark is afraid of Chuck Norris

I'm in a theology class. I never knew how fine a point a theologian can whittle, but my goodness. There are some razor sharp kind of fine points out there. And ideas that differ on so many levels. Not just am I right and are you wrong, but rather you are right, but I am right'er'. It is interesting stuff though that gets you thinking on a whole new level. Which is what I really love about taking college courses (besides not having to pay for it because I'm active duty) the fact that no matter what course you are taking, if it forces you to think on a higher level than you are used to, it benefits you in so many ways. I believe that the capacity to learn is a perishable thing, and if not exercised regularly, it is in grave danger of being lost.
The cold harsh truth
Okay, so we love the Air Force. We really do. We love living in new places, meeting new friends, the sense of community that comes with being a part of the military, even the hard stuff is worth being "Air Force". That being said,...Recruiting sucks. Bad. As Daniel says to me all the time: "Welcome to recruiting, check your family at the door." A truer statement has never been spoken.
Sorry if I offended any of you recruiters out there who love your job (ha!!). Whew! I feel better, maybe there is something to this blogging thing... Andrea
Blogging from the trenches

Recruiting is harder than a deployment. But it's good to come home to my family. At the end of the day I have the best family waiting for me. Tonight I had a few minutes to play with my daughter before she went to bed.

We got to play with frogs. . .

Do some (weighted) push ups. With Eve calling out "up", "down", "up". . .

half Daddy, half Mama, all Eve.

RockArt Red -a review
RockArt Brewery - American Red

I really like red ales. I generally lean towards dark rich beers, but when I'm in the mood for something lighter that still has good flavor I reach for a red. This is a thinner beer that poured clear and dark with almost no head, but a wonderful shade of red. There is nothing about this beer that is distinctive to taste. But it's complexity lies in that it has a thin, clear consistency with a dark and full flavor. No bitterness or aftertaste to speak of. Very good as reds go. 3.5 out of 5.
Born in the Family
Judah is 96 years younger than his great-great grandfather.

And he is fortunate in a way that I wasn't. He was born into Grandaddy's family. I wasn't.

A little over six years ago I asked Andie to marry me. She said yes and I started to meet her family. The entire time I was ready for the men of the family to give "the warning".

All you guys out there know what I mean.

The time that somebody (usually Dad, sometimes Uncle, Brother, Grandfather) pulls you aside and lets you know that you better take care of their little girl 'cause they're watching you. I was actually very welcomed in to the family, but I got what I was looking for when I met Grandaddy for the first time.

Now you need to know a few things about this man. He lost all hearing at age 11. His vision is starting to fail him and he is the oldest person I know.
When I met him I reached out my hand for a handshake and started to give him my well-practiced smile, which was meant to convey: it's nice to meet you, I've met 30 other people today and will forget your name in the next 2 minutes and {quick breath} I'm sure we'll be seeing a lot of each other in the years to come, it's so great to be a part of this family.

People, I thought I was shaking hands with a vice. My smile faded as I realized the somber mood of the moment. There was a crowd around us and no one else knew what was happening. He couldn't speak clearly to me, and I don't know sign language. But I understood more clearly in those few long moments what his eyes were telling me than if we had sat down and spoken for hours. I shut up and listened to a look. We were very suddenly on the same page.

He loves me now and I enjoy every minute I spend around him. He is the Patriarch and that's what I want to be someday. I have deep respect for that man then and now. Grandaddy has five generations to watch over and knows clearly that they are his descendants. One of those is Judah. Maybe someday my son will come home and tell me about an old man with a firm shake.

But for now I just love to watch Grand-daddy hold my son with true unconditional love.

It's good to be part of the family.
Federal Aid
I once heard that the scariest sentence ever could be "I'm from the Government, and I'm here to help". That being said, I am from the government so it's kind of tongue in cheek. But I bring it up because last night I filled out a financial aid worksheet applying for federal grants to help offset tuition costs. It was harder than filing taxes. About half of the info they needed was off my tax return, and then twice as much other stuff on top of it. Fortunately once I save that information I can just reapply next time. Cool.
So, today I'm going to play paintball at a friends house. He's got lots of property in the woods, should be fun. If I come away with pictures, I'll post 'em. That's all for now.
Walking Lessons
Here is a video of Eve helping Judah learn how to walk

a Rant
Microsoft- I found today that now if I want my Hotmail account to feed into my Outlook program, I have to pay a subscription fee. Should I really be paying Microsoft a fee so that Microsoft Hotmail can be able to communicate with Microsoft Outlook? NO. So I switched my Internet Explorer over to Firefox, my Hotmail to Gmail and my Outlook to Thunderbird.

Blogger- I logged on tonight and they told me the new version of Blogger is ready for me. Has anyone else made that switch yet, if so, I'm waiting to hear from you. Either post a comment or email me please.

Work- I found out today that somebody I enlisted is now disqualified because their drug test came back positive from when they went for their physical. He just threw away a career in the Air Force. So that's a bummer for me, considering all the work I put into helping him get in. Although it will be one more notch in my Army recruiting belt. Army Strong. You know I put as many people in the Army every month as they do? Here I am in the Air Force, one of their best recruiters.
Birthday Girl
Mrs. Hub turned 26 today. I had her present ready, but our daughter needed to get a present this morning. I took her shopping, but before we went, I asked her what she wanted to get Mommy. She said, "a baby".
"What kind of baby?"
"Like Abraham" (our friend's 2 month old)
"Honey, I don't think Mama wants one of those kinds of babies right now"
"Can we get her a dolly?"
So, we went to get a dolly, buy some flowers, and get back to the house so I could get started on baking the cake. Yes, I can cook (a little), and bake (a little). I never really do because my wife is the best cook in world and spoils me daily. But nobody should have to make their own cake on their own birthday. I made a pound cake. In a bundt pan. As of today, I know what a bundt pan is. I'm pretty pleased with myself. While the cake was in the oven we all went for a walk, then play time, nap time, and dinner time. Then cake, opening presents, waiting for the baby sitter, and going on our date. Here's some pictures.

On our walk

My amazing, incredible, out-of-this-world pound cake

Getting ready to eat the amazing, incre. . . . . pound cake

26 years holding 11 months

Good looks run in the family

It was her day. She deserves it, more than anyone. Let me just brag a little here. My wife is so incredible, it really amazes me every day. We've been married somewhere past 5 years now and I still haven't figured out how I got to be so blessed to get to marry her. She is not a dream come true because I couldn't dream this good. She's more. She works far harder than I do. Daily, keeping our house together and our kids presentable. She cares for us all day every day, she is never not "on". She is great in all that you could throw under the label of stay-at-home-mom. But her cooking, oh her cooking. It could be that she's found her way to my heart through my stomach, but I'm serious. She's good. And I feel like I have to qualify that because I know a lot of guys out there that claim good home cooking. So let me explain. We don't own prepackaged anything. If she is planning on cooking or baking something that requires a certain amount of flour, she grinds it out of wheat berries. That's how fresh I'm eating. She makes everything from scratch, every night. And she isn't stuck on 7 different recipes. Sure I've got some favorites that will always be around, but she is continually trying new things, new meals. Always good. Enough about food. Final thought. With a birthday comes the usual "I can't believe I'm another year older" and "I just can't imagine being 36 or 56 or 76". It's hard to imagine being 76 together, but I'm looking forward to the next 50 years. I love this woman.

continuing the conversation
I was talking with some people the other day about what my daughter (who is 3) won't know about when she gets older because it will have always been that way. Things like,

-Life without internet
-Having to pay for gas inside the store
-Lawn darts
-Phones attached to the wall with a cord
-No answering machine
-No cell phones
-Having to wait for your film to be developed before you could see how the picture came out
-Debit cards
**I'm out of time for tonight. What else can you add to the list?
Mrs. Hub
She expressed (a while back) that she wouldn't mind having a blog page, kind of a sub-page to this one, where she can put recipes and posts about cooking. She still hasn't done it. She does however check my blog all the time. Sooooo, leave her a comment and let her know how thrilled you would be if she got her page started.
Be careful what you ask for
I was 12 years old. I was the only child and we were living in Comiso, Sicily. My dad was stationed there with the Air Force. It was a weekend, I don't remember if it was summer or not because it was hot all year round. All I know is that I was watching my dad mow the back lawn and when I asked if I could try. . . he turned around and looked at me with a smile I hadn't seen before. Sure enough, he let me try. And when I thought I was done trying, he let me try finishing the lawn. And next week, he let me try again. I don't seem to remember him ever mowing the lawn again after that fateful day. Well, the only reprieve a young man has in a situation like that is knowing that someday he'll have his own inquisitive little minds running around the house asking questions. Such as "Daddy, can I help you do the dishes?"

Sure honey, let me pull up a chair. Now I know where that smile came from.

Okay, Last post about Kerry
I'm done. He doesn't deserve any more attention. SC Eagle has posted a funny video though about Kerry. You may want to watch the Army's new marketing campaign kickoff video first to fully appreciate the humor. For that reason I am embedding it here for you. Watch, then click over to A Storm in Afghanistan.

A Storm In Afghanistan: Army Strong; Kerry Smart#links#links#links#links
Rather than be redundant, I'm linking you to this post which says it so well. The non-apology.
We need your halp!!
By now most of you have seen and/or heard Senator John Kerry's remarks he made on Oct. 30 while campaigning in California for gubernatorial candidate Phil Angelides.

During his speech he said, "Education, if you make the most of it, you study hard, you do your homework and you make an effort to be smart, you can do well. And if you don't, you get stuck in Iraq.''

I expect that an apology is forthcoming if not already released. But we all know that the original statement is what is remembered. I feel somewhat of an obligation to defend my service. I for one, am currently pursuing my third college degree. A lot of people have this idea in their head that you can either join the military or go to college. The fact is though, that you can do both. Here's some facts.

· Nearly 80 percent of all Air Force enlistees scored in the top 50th percentile of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test in fiscal year 2006, a number that has remained above 75 percent since FY 2000.

· Every single Air Force member enters the service with a high-school education or equivalent (GED or homeschooling).

· In fiscal year 2006, more than 15 percent of all enlistees entered the Air Force with more than a year of college credits - nearly a 30-percent increase from fiscal year 2001. Additionally, nearly 5 percent of all enlisted members possess a bachelor's degree or above and another 16 percent have associatese's degree. All officers have earned a minimum of a bachelor's degree and nearly 50 percent possess a master's degree or above.

· The #1 reason trainees cited for enlisting in the Air Force last year was to "continue college education on active duty." For the past six years, education benefits have remained one of the top three reasons named for enlisting in the Air Force.

· The Air Force has exceptionally high-quality technical schools and training programs for its 142 career specialties. Upon enlistment, Airmen are automatically enrolled in the Community College of the Air Force - the largest accredited community college in the world - and they start to earn college credits towarassociatesate's degree from the basic military training and technical school instruction they receive.

The Air Force, along with all branches of the military, cares about education. Period. We are educated, we are knowledgeable, we are professionals. We are here on purpose, not as a lack of options. We made the cut. As a recruiter I turn away more people than I enlist. Because they don't qualify. It's hard to get in the military. And remember that it is a volunteer force. So when you hear those kinds of disrespectful statements, check the facts. And next Friday/Saturday, honor a Veteran. They are more accomplished than you know.

p.s. More good education stats on "El Capitan's" blog, linked here
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