Thursday, July 22, 2010

Delta Company Newsletter

Here's the link to the second issue of the Delta Co. newsletter.

I haven't been able to get it to load on my computer, but thought I'd post it anyway just in case it's my computer. If you get it open could you e-mail it to me?

"Her existence alone was excuse enough to justify the creation of the entire world."

Confession time.

I have become a Twilight fan.

I know, I know. It's ridiculous. I didn't want to read the books or see the movies or get dragged into the hype. Alas, thanks to my sister I have read the books, seen the movies, fallen in love with the story, and understand the hype.

The title of this post is a quote from Midnight Sun. There is only a draft version of it online and it is not complete, but it is Edward's version of Twilight. (For you non-Twilight fans, Twilight is about Edward and Bella told from Bella's point of view.) My sister reminded me of Midnight Sun the other day and so, of course, I set about reading it. The quote made me world stop spinning.

I said before, I understand the hype. I know why people love this story. They love it because it's an epic love story. They love it because of how deeply Edward loves Bella. His love is unconditional and self-sacrificial. Everyone is seeking for that kind of love and devotion. People were created for that kind of love.

"Her existence alone was excuse enough to justify the creation of the entire world."

That is how Edward views Bella.

That is how God loves you and me.

Imagine my surprise when I came across this sentence. Here I am reading a silly secular love story, only to be stopped dead in my tracks with Truth. The truth of the statement was overwhelming. I often forget just HOW MUCH God loves me. I forget that Jesus would have died on the cross, even if I was the only sinner.

It was refreshing to be reminded. It was like a cold shower on a hot day, being washed with the Truth. I hope it's as refreshing to you.

Your existence alone was reason enough for the Creator to create the entire world.

Your soul alone is precious enough to Jesus that He willingly died for it.

Believe it.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Other Happenings...

We had a busy weekend! Besides the party for JB (see previous entry), we also had a wedding on Saturday and a few get togethers on Sunday.

Saturday, the pastor that married us, Pastor Duane George, got married. It was a beautiful wedding and great to see friends that we don't see often these days. The reception was up near Nate's parents house, so we went to grab coffee/dinner with them afterwards. It was nice to have a relatively quiet evening with them and catch up :)

Congratulations, Pastor & Mrs. George!

Us in our "pretty wedding clothes" after dinner with his parents

Sunday, I had lunch with 2 of the girls from my Bible Study in college. Di has been doing missions work out of the country for the past year and a half and Nadeau just got married! It was so great to see them and catch up about what we've been doing and learning. A very refreshing and uplifting afternoon. Sunday evening Nate and I went to see Jenna Voorhees (my high school bff who now lives in Beverly, MA) play at "The Barn"! It's been a while since we've seen each other and I had never heard her music live, so it was quite the treat that we were able to make it. Like I said, it was a busy weekend, but totally worth being a little tired Monday!

It was so good to see her!

Cake Decorating

One of my very best friends, Jenna Blair, is moving to Erie, Pennsylvania for her first "adult" job at Penn State Erie! It's sad that we're all moving in different directions in life, myself included, but exciting at the same time. Friday we had a going away party for her at my grandmother's pool. It was an amazingly fun time and a great send off.

In honor of Jenna, I made/decorated a cake! It was my first attempt at ever doing something like this, so while it wasn't perfect, I was pleased. I found the idea for a flip flop cake on-line and it just seemed perfect. So I did the school colors of Towson (black and gold) since that's where she's been for the last 6 years(!) and Erie (white and blue) since that's where she's heading! It was so incredibly fun and I can't wait for the next time we need a cake for something special.

Congrats, JB! We're so proud and super excited for you!!!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Night Fire

Here are a few pictures from a few weeks ago when Nate did his night fire exercise. They were taken through their night vision goggles!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

"Swim Fex"

Squad Weapons Field Exercise, a.k.a. "Swim Fex" or SWFEX, is when we go out to the range and fire the different weapons systems available to us at the squad level. I don't know if you are aware, I work for a huge gun club. Haha. This took place on Monday, the 28 June. The following are some videos I took during the day. The different things we got to do were fire the M249 SAW; it's a light machine gun (I say light but it weighs more than double my M16A4!) It's pretty fun and can do some serious damage! Here's a link if you want to read more about it.

Then we got to shoot the M203 grenade launcher. This is a system that mounts onto the M16A4 rail system. Remember Terminator and the M79 "Thumper" that the Governator shot? If not, here's a quick refresher. This is what came before the M203, but now we have the M203, so much better, because it allows the Marine to employ organic indirect fire as well as his M16 all in one weapons system. What does that mean? Well, it basically means that a squad (about 13 Marines) can cover their own dead space. "Oh, ok", "Wait, what's dead space?" I know, I know, quit typing and show us the video of the grenade launcher already! Dead space is what you can't see. For instance, if a squad came upon the crest of hill at a saddle (the valley between two hills), the dead space would be the area that they can't get "eyes on" while they stay behind the crest of the hill. If you have questions, just post them. Ok, onward with the M203, here's a link to some more info and pics.

So the next weapons system we got to fire was the AT4. This one's easy to get. It is a single use rocket launcher. Yeah I know, SWEET! However, we didn't actually fire the rocket. How unfortunate! We did get to fire 9mm tracer rounds that have the same trajectory out of the AT4 though. It was fun. Here's a link for some more info and video below. The video doesn't really get good until about 2:30, sorry. That's when you can see the tracers.

And the coup de grace, we got to throw live hand grenades! How terrifying that was! Once you see the video you'll understand. The Marine next to me could have literally dropped a grenade on me, plus I was holding a very deadly explosive device at one time, but I threw it away. Haha. Now, it's not the old pineapple grenade that you can buy emptied of explosives at military surplus stores. This is the M67 which is supposed to fragment into more pieces, intended to make more shrapnel. As above, here's a link and a video. :) M67 Grenade, Pineapple Grenade.

We also got to see some additional types of flares and grenades such as the White Star Cluster or the Red Star Parachute, but my favorite was the Incendiary Grenade which burns at a temperature of 4000 degrees...I think the video speaks for itself.

How gruesome! That I am now in the business of killing. That there are whole huge enterprises dedicated to dreaming up the newest more effective/efficient way of killing someone. Right now I'm making my way slowly through a couple of books written by Lt.Col. Dave Grossman entitled "On Killing" and "On Combat". I highly reccommend them. Of course, I haven't finished them yet, but I think they are highly enlightening; even if you're opposed to killing or war, etc.

So, the above is just a taste of what is to come. Today, 1 July I received my first order, so I have to take that order from my Platoon Commander and write a squad level order. I'm excited. I hope you enjoyed reading and watching! Have a great day and have a fun and safe Independence Day. Thank God and a Marine!

Also, if you have any comments, requests, ideas, please feel free to share them!