Someone You Should Know

In all the hoopla this week with my kiddos, I totally forgot to post the “Someone You Should Know” post that I made a commitment to do. Sorry about that.

She is remarkable.

“You probably don’t know Augusta Chiwy.  She just didn’t patch up paratroopers…she went out to the battlefield and got shot at picking up wounded troops on litters and shelled and bombed in her own hospital…but you may remember this image from the Band of Brothers series (episode 6)…”

There are pictures and video and we all know that without Barron, I am worthless am not!, so just click on over to BLACKFIVE for the full story.

**edited by Barron to include video and creative license with my wording.**

**updated to embed the entire Documentary on the Battle of the Bulge**

If You Blog Using Blogger

For some reason I can not leave a comment on anyone’s blog that makes me verify with word verification. No matter how many times I type, correctly, the letters, it just keeps telling me they are wrong. I love ya, but I am not able to tell you that on your blog, sorry.

Jalissa– I tried to say you daughter is way to cute for words. Apparently your site agrees as it won’t let me post a single word.

Larry– lol, nice definition of damnyankee.

Zercool- I totally still want to come hunting and so does my hubby. The only hang up is that we have a EMT practical that Saturday, so I need to check see if we can miss one class.

AOA– I left a long rant, but don’t have the same heart for it now, so I will just say, yeah he is a “legitimate jerk”.

There are others, but I am off to the doctor as E has some kind of funky eye infection.



I Am Discovering

Two things. First, I was not as “dumb” about guns as I thought and you people are even more awesomer than I thought.

Again, when I first got my gun I knew nothing. Not a thing, we all know that. The problem was since I didn’t know anyone who had guns I turned to the internet and by the grace of god I found the most brilliant people around, that was good, very good. But, the thing was as I read blog after blog of brilliance I felt more and more awful about my lack of knowledge on self defense/reliance. I was in a way isolated and that gave me a false sense of self. In the beginning all that exposure was great, but as guilt crept in my mind about not taking care of my daughter every little thing magnified that guilt and I ended up spinning myself way up and drawing conclusions that just weren’t true.

Last night I drove to Lorton, VA to assist John in his Handgun 101 class. He used to teach this class, but stopped for while. Due to demand he recently brought it back. Handgun 101 is the basic “first” steps class that all brand new shooters should take. I never took one of those courses.

As I have been working with new students, I have learned that 99.9% have no idea about firearms and as hard as it is to believe many know less than I did. Doesn’t matter if they are male or female. Doesn’t matter how smart or self reliant they are. Doesn’t matter if they grew up around(around them, not with them as a part of their life style) guns. The people who come to Handgun 101 are literally starting from ground zero, like I was.

This is good on so many levels. The classes are maxed out, so that means not only are more people continuing to enter the world of guns they are taking responsibility to do it right. That’s neat and all, but this is about me, so here is the real neat thing, by teaching them I am learning that I wasn’t so dumb after all. I just didn’t know what I didn’t know.(Yes, Old NFO I do remember you telling me that once or twice or hundred times)

The people who take our classes are not stupid people nor do they lack common sense. We have engineers, doctors, lawyers, nurses, teachers, housewives, even many military people. Last night we had a wonderful young man whose father is a retired police officer, but our young student didn’t know much about guns or how to shoot. That was the thing all of them had in common…they just did not know what they did not know.

You know what else they have in common? They all think they are the only one. They think they are the worst most incompetent one in the class. They believe that the whole rest of the world has at least some level of knowledge pertaining to firearms. Guess what? They are all wrong. Some pick it up quicker or seem to have a more natural tendency for it, but pretty much in the basic class the skill level is about the same(not true for the more advanced classes. There we see more varied skill levels). That skill level is close to nill.

From what I can tell, outside of the range, these are very confident, self assured people, but hand them a gun and they turn into nervous self doubting people. Many of whom are so nervous they can not follow or remember basic instructions. This is not a criticism, it is an observation. One that I think is helpful in a lot of ways and not just to me. Also one that will be obvious to many in this group, but not so obvious to others.

For one it gives credence to the notion that getting out there and meeting other people is a good thing. Yes, before you are ready and yes before you have a clue. Once you stop isolating yourself you realize you are not all that unique and life is much easier. There are plenty of other people who are or were in the same exact boat. I was absolutely convinced I was the most uneducated person on guns that ever lived. This is not true. I have discovered that in fact while I was clueless I never struggled with many issues that others do. Of course, some of them grasp things much quicker than I did . Like DA/SA. It appears that I am very unique in that aspect. Apparently I am the only one who couldn’t get that, but I’v come to terms with it. You just don’t know what you don’t know. There is no frame of reference for most folks when it comes to guns. The lack of confidence and abundance of fear comes not from lack of intelligence, but of experience.

It also shows that once again guilt has zero benefit in your life. After E made her declaration and I had to stop living in my pretend world of all is well, the amount of guilt I felt was overwhelming and still to this day creeps in. Regardless of how many times I was told I was doing fine, to let it go, that I could forgive myself, that I was not a total idiot, that I wasn’t alone, I still wrestled with guilt continually. My brain was stuck in “your the worst mother to ever live” mode. The guilt allowed me to make huge leaps in my conclusions about myself. Conclusions that were neither helpful nor true. If you read those beginning posts I talk about being afraid and there is some emotion, but mostly I was in my pretned dream world and so mostly I was progressing and loving it and not caring so much that I was clueless. However, later when I faced the reality of not taking care of my daughter the post become more emotional and disjointed and irrational. I jumped from I don’t know about guns to I shouldn’t even be allowed to have children. At least that is how I felt inside.

I have written before about guilt and how destructive it is in a person’s life and how I have focused an enormous amount of energy in overcoming mine. I knew it was important for me so that I could ultimately be a better mommy to my kiddo. So that god forbid I find myself in that situation again I would most certainly be able to deal with it better, but also just on the day to day level of being the kind of mother my children need. A guilt ridden parent is not a good one. Guilt clouds your judgement, makes you more emotional, more sensitive, and more negative. It’s not good. The best advice I can give you is; if you have guilt about anything, whatever you have done or think you have done, no matter how awful you think it was or actually was…LET IT GO.

Your not alone. Your not helping yourself or anyone else, and there is absolutely no benefit found in that place. LET IT GO.

Second, lets move onto the you are awesomer part(or really awesome for those that prefer the correct usage of the English language).

I know that some people find my Open Letter over the top and melodramtic(I know this because from time to time I will get an email saying so or the fine folks at Reddit like to recycle it from time to time and share their thoughts on how nutty I am), but it is the most sincere thing I have ever written and I am a mighty sincere person.

I look at some of the posts I wrote and think wow, that chick was all kinds of wack-a, but when I look at the comments all I see are people who offered total support(and people who 18 months later are still here). I am sure someone along the line thought to say something not so nice, but graciously abstained. Not a single person said, Gee, lady your not the only person to ever screw up, move on.(Ok, Old NFO called me once and Arete might have eluded to it a time or two, but that was much later and still in a very loving way and plus it’s what I needed to hear) That was, actually has been, so incredibly valuable. To publicly go through the healing process of shame and guilt could have been a disastrous one, but for me, it was a lifesaver. In addition to my private support I had all of you. It’s mushy, it’s girly, it’s been said before, but honestly, what a blessing.

For those of you who say, The gun community isn’t a community or not all gun owners are nice or “she” could say that about any group, or lots of people find support in a variety of places, I say…

1. It is a community. Community is defined as, a social unit larger than a small village that shares common values. Sounds about like what is going on here. The gunny community is a place that I spend my time with a group of like minded folks that are supportive and kind. Doesn’t mean exactly alike or that there are no differences of opinion, but basically we are bound together by a love of firearms and a desire to take more responsibility for ourselves while encourage others to do the same and lots of other cool stuff.

2. If you are a gun owner that is either not nice or doesn’t like me then I am not talking about you.

3. True, I am sure others can say they found similar kindness in other places, but I didn’t. I found it here. I didn’t find it at church or inside my extended family or with my anti gun friends. I found it here and to my knowledge everyone else that comes here looking for knowledge and/or support has also found it.

In summary, if you do not know a thing about guns, you are not stupid. Relax. Do not stress. You are not the first and we love you all the same. You will get it. You will be fine. Trust me.

If you are letting guilt or fear or anything hold you back, LET IT GO. You don’t know what you don’t know and if you know it now, stop finding ways to hold on to it…LET IT GO.

And, guns are cool. Gun people are cool. Just give into it. Become a gunny. The water is fine. Your gonna like it here.




You’re A Little Bit Nuts

When I first bought my gun I thought I would buy it, take a class, put it on my hip and that would be that. The be all, end all to every self defense scenario there was. Yeah, to say I was naive would be a huge understatement.

The more I learned the more I discovered I needed to learn. Occasionally I get questions about the level I train. It mostly goes like this…

“You are not in law enforcement, you are not in the military, you don’t lead a high risk life, the odds of you ever getting attacked again let alone in a violent manner are slim. Don’t you think you are over doing it?”

I also get “I think you are just a tiny bit nuts and are doing all this just for fun and not because you really think you will need it”.

It is true that I do not live a high risk life style and that my daily life does not put me in obvious life or death situations such as a police officer or a person in the military, but I led an even less risky life the day I was mugged, so odds are not all that important to me.

To be honest with you most of the situations I play over in my head are not ones where I even think my gun will come into play. I carry my gun because I believe in stacking the deck in  my favor. I want to have every option available to me in case I should need it, but I do not intend to just whip out my gun and shoot someone at the slightest provocation.

Sadly, before all of my training that is probably exactly what I would have done. My thoughts were pretty much anyone who even tries to talk to me in a parking lot again is going down. Thank god I had John training me way beyond a simple CCW class. He not only trained me to shoot well and to deal with my mind in case I had to use deadly force, but he spent hours upon hours training me when not to shoot and testing my ability to think and not engage. He created as much stress as possible and put me in scenario over after scenario that required me to think and assess the situation and often time the end result was me not shooting. That really needs to be practiced.

The odds that I will be in a place like a theater where a gun man goes nuts spraying bullets is even less likely than me being mugged in a parking lot, but they both happened. Even so, I do agree that the odds of my needing to use my gun are slim. I do think that it is far more likely that I may have to use other methods to keep myself or my family safe. So, if my thoughts are that my gun is my last resort and not always the best choice doesn’t it make sense that I might want to hone some other skills? Things like paying better attention to what goes on around me, recognizing a potential threat, diffusing a situation. Perhaps it might benefit me to learn how to fight and using a knife. That’s an awful lot of things to learn and it is hard to get all that from one 2 day training course. So, no I don’t think I am over doing it.

Not to mention there are times when I don’t have my gun either by choice or by limitations placed on me by the law. If I only take one gun course a year to keep up my basic skills then what do I do if trouble comes when I am in a gun free zone like say interviewing to become an EMT?

I am not going to deny that I am a tiny bit nuts and I will admit that I absolutely love to train, but still there is value in what I do.

Just because I enjoy something does not mean it doesn’t have a purpose. The joy of training comes partially from the experience of the activity itself, but the bigger reason I love it is because it gives me skills and it builds confidence in me. Two years ago if you asked me if I was calm and confident I would have said yes and I think those who sat in my college classes and knew me as a friend would agree with that, but looking back I was missing something. The more I train the calmer I feel. I live a more peaceful and more controlled life. Even though my life before was non-violent and I thought I was full of peace the reality is I was nervous and uneasy in a variety of situations. I avoided danger(I don’t mean dangerous situations, I mean things like hiking off the trail or shooting a gun even for fun or standing up for myself) and in doing so I missed out on a whole host of experiences. My fear kept me from taking risks of any kind, it held me back and I was not really prepared to deal with any kind of crisis real or otherwise. The thing is I didn’t even know I was afraid. The fear had become a part of me and I reacted out of that place. I didn’t walk around nervous and tense, but the reality was I was afraid.

When we got the phone call from our daughter’s principal that she might be injured severely, I was calm, calm, calm. 18 months ago, I would have panicked and been crazed until I got to her. 18 months ago if there was a bomb threat at my kids school, I would have called my husband hysterical and made him come home. The focus of the day would have been on calming me down instead of dealing with the situation at hand. Of course on Tuesday I was concerned for my daughter and the others at the school because even though it was not likely for there to be a bomb, there was always the first time for each tragic event that has taken place. Before the first school shooting there hadn’t been a school shooting, so just because the odds were against, I still was uneasy. Even the perceived notion that my child could be in danger was stressful for me. I love her and I take caring for her very seriously, but I was able to focus and perform the entire time the situation was on going. That was hugely important for me, my husband and our children. If nothing happened then I avoid expending energy getting crazed plus my husband could focus on his job instead of a hysterical wife and I was teaching my kids how to handle a “crisis”. Plus if it did turn out to be a problem, I had a clear head to deal with it. I did not have that level of peace before I started training. I have gained not only the skills I need to defend my life with and without a gun, but also a confidence and calm that has helped me lead a much more fulfilled life. That did not happen in one or even two training sessions. It took me pushing myself beyond what I thought I could and confronting situations I didn’t think I could handle and showing up time after time when I struggled to over come a certain mental block.

I truly think I need the training. All of it and more. All you have to do is ask the people I train with and they will tell you I am a serious student. I pay attention. I am there to learn a skill and to master it. My biggest problem is that I always feel like I am catching up and that I am going to need the one skill I don’t have yet. I try to cram as much into my training sessions as possible without compromising quality. I believe with all of my heart and soul 100% that everything I have done is something I need and even though I have stuffed an awful lot into a short amount of time, I still think I should be a much better shooter than I am and I know that a handful of combatives/ knife sessions is far from enough. Not only do I believe I am not over doing it, most days I think I am not doing enough. However, the greatest skill I have gained has been the change in my mind. The more I train the less I worry about what I don’t know. It is a paradox. The more I train the more I know I need to train, but the less I worry about not knowing every single skill out there. I have much to learn, but through my training I have learned to transform my mind and my thinking. I now know that regardless I will prevail. But, to be on the safe side I like to keep adding to my tool bag.

This story from Active Response Training is a fine example of training beyond carrying your gun. If you don’t take the time to think and train for other situations you just might find yourself standing outside a post office with a few knife holes in your body. One can still survive an encounter like this, but if there is a way to avoid it or come out with say no stab wounds, then I am all for that.

Now, if you will excuse me I am off on a run and then some dry fire practice and I will probably watch a video on combatives. Might try to knock the snot out of a pillow or two while I am at too.



Yesterday I was exhausted. All the excitement of getting geared up to go to Ohio, the long car ride to know where, the worrying about if our daughter was ok, the not getting upset when we missed our trip, the whole I am sure it’s not really a bomb thing, just left me a little drained, so I took Wednesday to relax.

I got up early to make my kids breakfast and pack their lunches then sent them off to school and crawled back into bed. I did some blogging and drank my coffee. By 11am I transitioned to the coach and iced tea. I spent the rest of the day reading. I finished my book Battle Ground Pacific and read 2 others. When the kiddos got home from school we did homework and I made dinner(beef ragu over cheesy polenta). I finally showered at about 6pm. I normally am not a lounge around the house kind of gal, but it felt good.

My hubby and I had our EMT interview at 8pm. When we arrived at the building there wasn’t anyone around, so we just looked at the pictures on the wall and entertained ourselves. It turned out the people were in a side room conducting an interview. A few minutes after we arrived a young girl walked in shaky and nervous. She was there to interview for a junior membership. She was the sweetest thing. I spent sometime encouraging her to relax and just be herself.  She seemed to feel better and was able to settle herself a little.

Soon they called us back. The interview was very easy. They were as excited about us applying as we were about wanting to be selected. Typically they get very young volunteers and not all of them take it seriously. There is a high drop out rate and of those who finish, not many actually volunteer. The county is getting tired of spending money and getting very little return on their investment. Makes sense. I know how disappointing it is to have someone commit to you and then not follow through.

The interview was more them explaining to us what is required and then encouraging us to join the team. They liked that we were older and both have experience in other careers. Having college and professional jobs, I think gave them confidence that we can and do follow through. Not that either of those things are required to be a good EMT, but of late their students have not been as serious about learning and working as they would like.

The EMT side has not had any trouble, but our volunteer fire department has gone through some major changes due to more than one scandal. Both groups are trying to do a better job of selecting candidates.

For whatever reason we appeared to them to be the kind of people they wanted on their team. Half way through the process we were told we were in. The rest of the time we spent chit chatting about training. He wondered if I would be committed to training as some people like to work the shifts, but not continue their training beyond the basics.  My husband giggled because, of course, I am kind of into training and preparing myself for whatever task is ahead of me. The gentleman asking the question got a huge smile on his face when I told him that not only am I dedicated to learning, but also to putting my skills to work. I am not much for going through the motions. I didn’t tell him, that is it not unusual for me to overwork my trainers. Didn’t want to scare him off:)

It didn’t take to long to get around to guns. They asked what I did for work. I told them I work for a firearms instructor and they were thrilled. I guess the head lady who was not there just bought a pink .22. I think she is just starting out in her gun journey.  The main lady conducting our interview told me she has a 9mm. We didn’t get into specifics. They were, of course, thrilled to have a retired Marine and before he is even certified they were asking him if he would be interested in attending an instructor school and eventually teaching EVOC.

Lets see, they also shared some war stories. They told us that they had a student who got certified and then her second call out as an actual EMT was a suicide. The guy had jumped off a bridge, landed on the street and was hit by a car. The young lady preformed well, but quit the next day. It took her about a year to recover from that, but eventually she went on to become a paramedic and now works for the county.

Bottom line we are in and the adventure starts this Saturday with CPR.

All and all, a very fine and dandy Wednesday.






Women, Bike Riding, and Safety

I often talk about the average anti gun person. Not the ones that work for the Brady Campaign or run Chicago or New York, but the neighbor down the street. The one that isn’t actually a complete idiot or looking to control the world, but the one who has been completely conditioned to believe guns are bad and people aren’t.

Yesterday a lady who reads the blog sent me a link to a bike riding forum she is on. The subject was safety while riding alone. At the time I read through it, it was a 4 page thread with only 2 women thinking a gun was a viable option. All of the other women not only said they would not carry a gun, but that doing so was paranoid and unnecessary. Worse than their aversion to guns were the comments they made about what they believed would keep them safe. A total false sense of security is all most of them have

The tendency for some will be to read the comments left by these women and then say they are stupid or they deserve to get mugged, raped, killed because they are sheep. I don’t think anyone, no matter how clueless, naive, or thickheaded deserves any of those things. My main goal, now, in writing this blog is to find ways to relate to those people and help them understand the flaws in their thinking. My hope is to get them to take greater responsibility for their lives and do something that will actual benefit them should they ever need to fight for it. I think my blog reader did a good job of stating her points and advocating for just that.

The discussion can be found here.

Wrap Up

M’s field hockey game ended up being cancelled last night which gave us an opportunity to talk a little more about yesterday’s events. M said that about 11:30am the principal came over the loud speaker and told everyone to get to the classroom they were supposed to be in and to stay there. They did not have to lock the doors or get along a wall or anything. After about 30 minutes they were escorted outside to the football field. The police and their bomb sniffing dogs had cleared that area to make sure there wasn’t a bomb there and police had searched the area for any persons of interest. Basically they stayed there until the buses arrived to take them home. No one was allowed to stay at the school.

M said everyone was calm and it appeared to her that the police did a good job of searching the school. Her assessment was based on the fact that it “took forever.” Water was offered as was food, but food wasn’t available until the end when the school was deemed safe for staff to return to the building. She said it was hot, but not a big deal. Total they were outside 2 1/2 hours.

All and all it seems everything was handeled the way it should have been and it should be noted, different than it was handled last year when several of these threats were reported. I have no idea what prompted the change, but I am much happier with the new protocol as opposed to the old one of chaos and misinformation.

M said other than the bomb thing high school is really great. Apparently there is quite a looker in her Latin class which was what she wanted to talk about the most.

Yesterday was not my favorite day, but I learned a few things…my family did ok in the face of a crisis. Even though we were fairly certain the threat was not a real one we were still concerned. The odds were against it being a real bomb, but odds are sometimes wrong and I was still concerned that perhaps something might go boom. I did not panic or freak and neither did my daughter. I stayed home and waited for info which is not what I wanted to do, but felt it was the best thing. The newspaper did a good job of updating the situation as did the school. I didn’t fully relax until the whole family was safe and sound and in bed, but at no time was I crazy with worry.

Really thankful that nothing was planted and no one was hurt and extremely thankful that even though we keep getting these false alarms our town took it serious and made sure all was well. I worry about complacency, but actually have more confidence in the professionals of our district and town.

Hoping day 2 is less dramatic than day 1 and really hoping we are done with this kind of drama for the whole year.

The World Does Not Owe You A Sandwich

Today I was fortunate that our local newspaper kept us updated on the events that took place at my daughter’s high school.

My daughter got off the bus and I met her mid stride in the middle of the street. I hugged her and she said, “Mom, I am fine.” I did not let go. I literally hugged her all the way to our house…like four feet, but still. Eventually she made me let go. My other 3 children are at a totally different school but for some reason I could not settle myself until they were home. I had zero desire to cry, but once everyone of my family members were home I had to fight back tears. I was successful as I didn’t want to freak my kids out, but it took effort.

Our beautiful, precious M has a field hockey game tonight, so off she went with my husband. I could not attend as the other 3 have homework etc. and I didn’t want her to leave. I made dinner for the little ones and then as a distraction I popped back on to our local paper’s site and saw this comment…

I am angered at the lack of planning on the school boards end; the went into lock down before lunches started and then evacuated the building hours later, so there was no meals provided for children! They finally brought water out, but what about getting OTHER SCHOOLS involved to make sandwiches, or get apples,etc out to those kids! I have a call into the school board…let’s see what they have to say.

This is what I have to say…If there is choice between focusing on trying to keep my kid from being blown up and say, giving her food, I am going to go with choice A.

I am brand new to this survival thing, but I am pretty sure most all of us can survive 3 1/2 hours in 85 degree weather with just water.

It took every bit of self control I had to NOT head on down to that school with my handy dandy 9mm and save the day, but I kind of thought with the police dogs and experts I might be a bit of a distraction. So sandwiches never really came into play for me.

I in no way relinquish my responsibility or my desire as a parent to keep my family safe to anyone let alone my local school or police department, but at no time during this god awful sucky day did I wonder if my kid had a sandwich. I mostly wondered if her she was scared, if she was safe, if she wished her mom was there.

No one and I mean NO ONE can or even should be burdened with the responsibility of 100% guaranteeing anyone’s safety. It is a huge step in faith for me to turn over my kid, but even I  with my gun, extra mag, 2 knives, pepper spray, warrior mindset and ninja fighting skills can  promise she will be safe(I hate this fact by the way), but I can and will expect an effort by those who are charged with that duty. A concerted, well informed, trained effort to do everything one can humanly do. For some reason giving her a sandwich never once occurred to me.

I am not much for vigilante justice, but what this person did was cruel. It was irresponsible and it was mean. Here is the thing, sometimes evil just gets the first shot. Please for the love of god if you have to pick between stopping a bomb threat and giving my kid a sandwich, please, please, please address issue number one. After they are all home safe I will make every single one of them a sandwich, but lets get them home safe first.

Honestly, THANK YOU GOD FOR LETTING MY KID COME HOME SAFE AND WHOLE. You have no idea how much I value that blessing. Thank you, thank you, thank you!


Bomb Threats…Still Not A Fan

For some reason the county I live in has a higher than average number of morons. The kind that think it is funny to call in bomb threats.

Today I got a phone call, computer generated voicemail and email telling me my daughter’s high school was on lockdown due to a “credible” bomb threat. I don’t know how they deem it credible or not, but anyway.

You all know that because we had a number of these incidents last year, although not at my kids actual schools, my husband and I have been doing a lot of research into bomb threats, active shooters and how our district deals with them. Mostly we have not had a lot of cooperation, but today I got to find our first hand how they deal.

First I will say all is fine and the threat is over. Children are on their way home now. I was not scared when I got the message because in my research  from many sources to include Greg Ellifritz I have learned that people who intend to bomb a school don’t call it in first. I was 99.9% sure it was a hoax, but when your kid is not with you and there is even the slightest chance they are in danger and the last time your kid was in danger you didn’t do the right thing, it adds a certain amount of uncomfortableness. The last 3 hours have not been pleasant for me, but I was calm.

A few minutes ago I received a text from my daughter that said she is fine and on her way home and I got this from the county…

Dear Parents/Guardians:

This communication is being sent as a follow up to the phone/email message you received earlier today.  At approximately 11:30 a.m., a  student received a text message from an individual off school grounds that indicated a bomb was at the school.  Upon notification by the student, Administration immediately contacted the Sheriff’s Office who advised that the school go into lockdown.  The Sheriff’s Office called in bomb dogs to search the grounds.  Once the outside was deemed safe by the Sheriff’s Office, students were evacuated to the football stadium and an extensive search of the school building was conducted by the Sheriff’s Office with the assistance of bomb dogs.  During the entire situation, the priority of Administration was to ensure the safety of our students.  While the students were outside, water was provided to the students.  Students were provided an opportunity to have something to eat and drink before getting on the bus or leaving.

Nothing was discovered by the Sheriff’s Office and the all-clear was given to Administration for staff and students to return to the building.  Please plan to report to school tomorrow as scheduled.

Our counselor is available to support students as needed. Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at

Here is what I like: I was first notified about 15 minutes after the lockdown went into effect and then again about an hour later with an update. The student reported the threat right away to the right people, those people took immediate action. It appears they secured all the children and then checked the outside area of the school. I like that a lot because Greg posted this…

There has never been a bomb threat in an American school that preceded an explosion. Every single threat in the history of American education has been a false alarm. If the person making the threat really wanted to harm the kids, he wouldn’t call before detonating the device.

That’s why I worry about mandatory evacuation policies. It’s easier to place a real bomb in the evacuation area outside than it is to hide in a school. Mandatory evacuation during bomb threats actually does nothing to protect the children, it only makes them easier to be shot or blown up outside. Many schools don’t understand the issue and in the quest to keep students “safe” actually expose them to more danger.

Once they deemed the area safe they then had the children taken to that cleared spot and continued to care for them. They took their time and did a thorough investigation of the school. Even after the all clear the students did not go back to school they were sent home.

I think this town might actually have a handle on this.

What I didn’t like: Feeling totally helpless and scared while my daughter was not in my care. Now that I know she is fine I am a bit shaky and teary eyed and I really can not wait to get my hands on her.

**Edit** Forgot to link Greg Ellifritz and since others have asked I will also include other resources we used to prepare ourselves and children for life away from us. these are also the resources we gave to the administration folks for our county schools.

A Parent’s Guide To Surviving A School Shooting

How To Survive A School Shooting

Innocent Targets

The 2002 Dubrovka and 2004 Beslan Hostage Crises

We read a ton more and also spoke with teachers, principals, the police, kids, and other parents to try to get an understanding of what was being done here and what if anything did the others in our community know about what the plan was/is for our kids and their schools are.




My spectacular weekend of fun and learning while basking in the glow of gun smoke was not to be. The sexy Marine(Ret) and I headed out early Friday morning and made it all the way to Pennsylvania before we received a phone call and a matter that needed our attention. I was more than a little frustrated, but whatcha gonna do?

Instead of shooting, shanking and hopefully punching more than I go punched, I made cheesy eggs for my kids, did some last minute school shopping, did some field hockey activities, and had a lazy lunch with that same sexy Marine(Ret).

Today I sent all my kids off to school. M is now in high school and I spent this morning as I do every first day back to school…sick to my stomach. I like my kids a lot and I miss them when they are gone. A little run to clear my head was helpful though.

Tomorrow night is my interview for the EMT course. The class is oversubscribed, so I might not make it in…fingers crossed. If for some reason I do not get selected I have a plan B, so no worries.

I have also agreed to testify at a hearing in DC. Hopefully, I will get an opportunity to share and maybe have a positive impact on helping to change the laws in DC. Fingers and toes crossed on that one.

Other than that it’s the same ol’ same ol’. Training, working, studying, doing the mommy thing. You know…living the life!