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  • Get out of the box

    As my tour here at Joint Base Balad comes to an end, I've looked over the last six months and thought of all the things I've had an opportunity to do and people I've met. I've done things I said I would never do, like fly in a helicopter, and met people I've never expected to meet, like the vice president of the United States. As excited as I am to
  • Tri-ing to be fit to fight

    Anyone who knows me knows I'm a fitness fanatic. At the same time, anyone who knows me knows that if they come between me and my three daily desserts, there will be hell to pay. I like to think these two aspects of my personality counteract each other nicely. Recently, Eglin Air Force Base hosted My First Tri -- a "short" 200 meter swim, eight-mile
  • Loss of Airman Felt During of 101 Days Campaign

    Air Commandos, we have suffered a great loss this past weekend. Airman 1st Class Eric Toothaker was tragically killed at the age of 24 in a kayak incident. My deepest condolences are extended to the family and colleagues of this warrior. Our hearts go out to them, and we will do all we can to support them in this trying time. They are in our
  • Act like you own the place

    The brown root beer can lay on its side still as death in front of a car in the parking lot. To me it looked like a huge cancerous growth on the asphalt as I rounded the corner in search of an available spot for my car. This was no ordinary parking lot; it was a barracks parking lot that was nearly full to capacity. This parking lot was also right
  • Bon voyage: Weight warrior sails back into normal life

    I took a break. Not from dieting, but from writing about dieting. I was overwhelmed by all the rules I was making for myself. Less salt, more water, limited calories, more exercise, making food choices, portion control, strength training, etc. I couldn't take it anymore; there were too many rules! So, I had to stop thinking so much about it and get
  • Want to succeed? Then take people with you

    After 28 years in the Air Force, I now look back to how it started and assess whether I've realized what I wanted from the Air Force. As most of you know, everyone joins the Air Force for different reasons. Some join for patriotism, school, to accompany a friend or even to follow in a parent's footsteps. Both of my parents served in the Air Force,
  • The American military wife: History in the making

    Since the birth of our nation, women have made tremendous sacrifices in support of our country. This is especially true of the American military wife. As any military wife will tell you, being "married to the military" under the best circumstances requires patience, understanding and flexibility. With the never-ending rotation of deployments,
  • Hat, purse spur lifelong military devotion

    My love and admiration for women in the armed forces, then called the Women's Army Corp developed early in my life. I was 10 years old when Pearl Harbor was bombed. Soon afterward, my favorite aunt, Mildred Mitchell, enlisted in the WAC. I missed her, and when she was home, I was her shadow. She let me wear her "Hobby hat" and carry her military
  • Weight warrior vows to crush sodium, drink more water

    So here's the deal. I didn't lose any weight at my weight loss support group Monday, but according to my scale at home, I lost two pounds. So what's the bottom line you ask? I lost two pounds this week. I know weight has the ability to fluctuate on a daily basis because I'm obsessed with the darn scale. It's crazy; sometimes I wake up in the middle
  • American history, Black history, a Family history

    My family has been in the same business for more than 65 years now. It started with my grandfather in 1941. He handed it off to my father in 1976 and my father handed it to me in 2001. Some families run restaurants or maybe bakeries. Some families own and operate their own auto shops or construction businesses. My family business is the Air Force.
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