A Tribute To The Women In Firearms

This weekend I worked at the range. At the end of the course someone mentioned the name of my blog(no, it wasn’t me). The class was all men and one of them said, “Oh, so you are in competition with LimaTunes

He was being funny. He is a nice guy and I enjoyed spending the weekend with all the students, but on the way home his comment was the topic of a discussion I had with TSM.

The idea that women in the industry are in competition with each other. To some extent that is true. People are competing for business, but I not in the way that joke was made.

First, I have no goals in the firearms industry. I am not really trying to be an instructor. I took the NRA course because I was asked to and in order to have some creditably at the range, but I do not envision me doing any more than I do now. For one thing I do not have the time to dedicate to it in order to be qualified in a manner I believe instructors should be. For another, I have other goals.

Secondly, I don’t actively try to build up my blog or FB. One of the things I love is that my blog is a true reflection of who I am and in the process several folks have come along for the ride. They have shared with me, taught me, supported me, and let me into their lives. It has been a blast, but becoming a big blogger has never been my goal or desire.

However, one of the things I have found to be unique among the female firearms professionals is their amazing support and promotion of other women in the industry. I have worked in a variety of professions and while never directly been a target I have seen competition and desire to get ahead bring out the absolute worst in some women. Catty, back biting, gossip, jealousy, undermining…

Ambition, the desire to be the best, to succeed, to grow, to make money are excellent! Nothing wrong with those, but one does not have to step on others in order to get there.

Every single woman I know(that I personally know) in the profession of guns, instruction, firearms gear, self defense, Second Amendment, blogging etc., has been overly supportive of other women. They promote other’s ideas, their courses, their conferences, their books, their blogs, their growth…

I would like to take the time to thank these women(you know who they are) for their support and encouragement of me. It has been my privileged and honor getting to know each of you.


Some Things To Think About

I am under educated and under aware of all that I should know, need to know about the government and all that has led us to this point.

I paid attention in school, I have read a lot of books over the years, I have always watched the news and had discussions with folks about the economy, those in charge of our country and events taking place in the world, but I did so with a naive and skewed view. Until recently, very recently, I never saw the world or this country in the light I should have.

One night at dinner, I told my husband I felt like a radical crazy gun nut because I had actually thought more than once that I might have to stand up against my government .I told him I get physically sick to my stomach when I think about all those that fought and died for the principals this country was founded on and I didn’t want those deaths to be in vain. I got sick thinking about the world I was leaving my kids. How can I let this happen? How could I do nothing to?

My husband said, “Are you listening to yourself?” “You feel like a radical for even having the audacity to think about taking a stand for your country?” “For believing with everything inside you that what this country was founded on, is WORTH fighting for?” “You are not radical, your awake!”

My husband is not one to think we are at the brink of a civil war or even close to it, but he is clear in his mind what he will do, what he will not do. Unlike me, he doesn’t spend a lot of time or anytime really thinking about these things because he doesn’t care. Regardless of what happens or doesn’t happen he knows where his line in the sand is and he has a plan.

One thing he knows is that war is hell. Not the slogan, “War is hell”, but that war is actually hell. He has witnessed civil wars with boots on the ground and he has spent time in countries with unstable governments and it is horrific. Any romantic views of what this country will be like during or after a civil war are pure bullshit. He has told me time and time again, those that say they are willing to die for their country, for their beliefs, for their arms, better mean it because most likely they will and death might be the preferred outcome. Those that live through it suffer… severely.

My husband has already put himself in that situation, so he knows how he will react. He has no illusions of what battle is and honestly he was not a fan.

I am still figuring a lot of things out and I don’t know how I feel or think about a many of them, but I do know that regardless of the gun ban issue(which I am crystal clear on how I feel), this country is in deep doodoo and if more people do not wake up and start to fight back now, then my radical thoughts just might be our only answer.

This is not just a gun issue. People have to have the courage to open their eyes and see the facts, see what is happening. We have a lot more to lose if we continue down this path.

“Freedom makes a huge requirement of every human being. With freedom comes responsibility. For the person who is unwilling to grow up, the person who does not want to carry is own weight, this is a frightening prospect.” -Eleanor Roosevelt 



A few links to help you get started…

A World Without Guns

Why The Gun Is Civilization

If They Come For Your Guns, Do You Have A Responsibility To Fight?


The other day on Facebook (I know I spend entirely too much time there) I posted a blog post by a man who was defending his photograph of a young girl with a gun. In the comment section of my FB page someone left this…

“The best way to get to these kind of people is to give them no validation. Just hit delete and block for email like that as it makes their day to get you to respond no matter how negative the response”.

That comment was left by a person who comments a lot on my page and is always friendly and insightful. I was not upset or offended by his reply. I am sure he was offering it  with the best intentions.

My response to him was…

“In general I agree. That is what I do 99% of the time, but occasionally there is an email, comment, post that warrants a response. Never for the original sender, but maybe for my own need to rebuke it or to try to effect others that read such dribble and could benefit from an alternate view point…”

I have never been very good at standing up for myself, but I have been trying to learn to do that. I have no desire to become involved in a constant battle with everyone who disagrees with me or pokes at me looking for a response, but sometimes regardless of the person”s original intent, I need to stand up against it. Sometimes it is for me to maybe just show myself, no I will not allow this.

Kathy Jackson wrote…

“It really is a form of social bullying, when someone tries to make you feel ashamed or embarrassed about something important to you. Appeasing bullies never really works; it just tends to make them bolder and more insistent. So it will take some social bravery to face down the bullies and hold onto the gains we’ve made in recent years.”

It is bullying.

Now, I realize if I write a blog and put myself and my story out there I subject myself to a certain amount of potential harmful comments. I accept that and I really do believe people have a right to be heard, but there is a difference from not agreeing with me or pointing out an error and just being mean, cruel, and hateful.  When someone posts a comment or writes on their blog something either untrue or mean just because, well that is bullying and it’s wrong.

Kathy also writes…

“Stories are always powerful. If you have a story of your own, be brave enough to share it with others, to whatever level of detail you’re comfortable…”

Stories are powerful and my story has impacted some. It is why I continue to bring it up or share it, because I was naive and unprepared and it cost me. It cost me a lot and if I can help in anyway, someone avoiding my situation or something much worse then I want to do that.

Her post says what I have been feeling. Go read the whole post. She offers a very good perspective!

Speaking Of Being Prepared

Soon after my very first Conceal Carry for Self Defense class I started forcing myself to look at different crime videos and reading stories of victims of crime in order to see what I could learn from those people involved. I try to look at each from a variety of angles and discern what if anything I can apply from their situation in order to help me be more prepared.

In the story I pointed to yesterday for instance I found several things that made me stop and think.

One was that in some respects this woman got lucky because when her gun ran out of ammo, the bad guy didn’t notice and he didn’t come after her, he ran away. That is good. Very good.She is alive, her children are alive, she did exactly what she needed to do! Luck is good, but as Tom Given says, if your in a gun fight, it already isn’t your luckiest day(paraphrasing). I will take luck if I can get it, but I don’t want to rely on it, so for me, I look at that situation and think, more bullets is better.

That kind of scenario is why last year  I went from my Glock .27 to my M&P…more magazine capacity. Just something to think about. Probably the average conceal carry citizen will not need 17+1, but I would prefer to have bullets left over as opposed to running out.

Something our legislators might want to think about too.

A Hero

Kathy Jackson linked an article about a woman who was forced to defend her life and that of her children.

The woman heard someone trying to break in, so she and her children “retreated” to a “safe” area of the house, but the bad guy found them anyway. The mother shot him with her .38 Revolver (the article does not specify).

The article quotes her husband…

“My wife is a hero. She protected her kids. She did what she was supposed to do as a responsible, prepared gun owner,” Donnie Herman said.

I love this so much. I love it because he says …”what she was supposed to do as a responsible, prepared gun owner.”

Emphasis mine.

As gun owners we prepare.

Many anti gun people think that those of us who carry are reckless, blood thirsty killers. We are not. I am not. What I am, is a person who trains for the possibility that I might, once again, meet up with the worst of society and in that case, I would like to be prepared to defend my life and that of my children. As a responsible gun owner, I prepare.

This woman did nothing wrong. Nothing. In fact she did everything right.

She did what she was suppose to do as a responsible, prepared gun owner. I do not know how she prepared or trained, but in that moment she did not ask for, she did what she needed to do.

How do you suppose this story would have ended if she hadn’t had a gun? If she was not prepared how might have this gone?

She did what she as a responsible, prepared, gun owner should have done. Even so, her road ahead will most likely not be an easy one. She did everything right and because of a monster, she will still pay a price. Thank God that price was not with her life or that of one of her children.

Her husband is not alone. As a responsible and prepared gun owner, she is my also hero.

On Time- Brigid

Brigid writes a post On Time and as always is the case with her, it is beautifully written.

In her post she quotes the Dalai Lama and his respond to this question…

What surprises you most about humanity? He replied…

“Man.  Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then he dies having never really lived.”

I am a live in the moment person. I plan for and think about the future, but I have learned, the hard way, that life doesn’t always give you a second chance  Sometimes people leave and they don’t come back. Sometimes there are events that take place that change us and no matter how hard we try, we will never be the same.

Some people say they have no regrets. That they cherish everything thing that has happened in their lives because it has made them who they are. I am not one of those people. I have regrets.

I am sure most of you can guess.

I accept those parts of my life that I can’t change  That I wish weren’t there. They are a part of me, but they are not the whole of me. I refuse give up my life. I think many of us focus so much on the not letting the bad guy steal our lives from us, we forget how much we steal from ourselves. The bad guy isn’t a daily threat, but sometimes our mind is.

My hope is that in the midst of all the world’s problems, with all the uncertainty of our country, along with all that life throws at us, that you remember to live.




A Little Help

This morning as I was getting ready to do my workout, I heard my phone ding. I usually turn it off, but sine i didn’t, I popped over to see who it was from.

Text- “Happy Friday, my friend!”

Me- “Happy Friday”

Friend- “I am looking for a gun.”

I am pretty much shocked at this point. She is not really a gun person. Her son is and her hubby I think, but she has never been to keen on me talking about them. She lets me bring my guns when I visit, but they have to be locked up and left in my car. She is sweet as pie. Tough too, but not a shooter.

Me- “Really?” “How can I help?”

Friend- “Lol, yes a gun for me.”

Me- “What will you be using it for and how much shooting have you done?”

She has shot a .22 rifle and some kind of pistol, but that was 10 years ago or so. She actually is looking for a small gun to carry on her property because they are having trouble with wolves.

Friend- “I have no intention of carrying it off the property and hubby has a hunting rifle, but I would prefer something smaller that I could carry on my body.”

Me- “Ok, I actually do not know much about handguns for wolves.” “Let me ask on my blog.”

Friend- “Thank you my dear”.

I have some thoughts on this and I shared them with her, but I would like to know what you all think. I will encourage her to get some training either in a hunters safety type class or a basic pistol course through the NRA. She lives in Wisconsin, so I can’t work with her. She is smaller like me, but she is not timid and she is not one to back down from something she needs to do. So, I am a bit concerned about the kick of a bigger caliber then she is used to, but not overly so. I think she would get training and learn to shoot whatever she felt she needed to be safe from the wolf.

She might read this blog from time to time(not sure), so I am going to keep other thoughts to myself, but maybe you know what I am thinking about her opening her mind to using a gun in any capacity. Even though it’s only for a four legged animal, I am thrilled that she is thinking about her safety and ways to protect herself!

The AGirl Clan Shoots

So, a few days before Christmas TSM and I gave M her Smith & Wesson M & P .22 pistol. (her gun, under our control and supervision only)We gave it to her early because I knew we did not have any classes scheduled at the range and I wanted to get her out there shooting. John was gracious enough to allow me to use it for the day.

TSM, myself, all 3 little kids, M, M’s friend and a gentleman from my husband’s work all headed to Culpeper for a little fun…

Family 407

Family 307M was first up.

Family 309


Family 315


My approach was take her out with her friend and let her shoot or not. No pressure. She shot and shot and then E asked if she could shoot her sister’s gun and, of course, M was gracious enough to agree.

Family 322All the kids took turns.

Family 338Our daughter A is a princess. She is the girl-est of all girls. She has always been that way. Well, not always, but close. Her choice for the range was skinny jeans, maroon “leather” boots and a pink flowy coat. Not really range attire, but it’s her and we have no intention of changing that. She has shot before and she likes it, but she is flighty, so we are very much hands on with her when she is shooting.

Family 344


This was The Boy’s very first time ever shooting anything. He has been allowed, under supervision, to hold a gun(in our dedicated safe area) and dry fire, but until that Sunday, he had not taken a live shot. He used E’s .22 rifle. He did well, but as with A needs much hands on support.

Family 374


When one child was shooting the other 2 had to sit inside the trailer and wait patiently without getting up. If they did that, they could then have their turn. They never once got up or caused a single issue that caused me concern. I was very proud!!

My older son and our friend were off shooting on the other side of the range while TSM and I worked with the little ones. At one point M came up to me and asked if she could shoot her gun. Shocked, I said sure. She shot and shot and shot. A little later she even took E and at one point helped E clear a malfunction. I was standing by on overwatch and taking pictures.

I did not shoot much as I was helping my kids and making sure everything was done safely, but I did get a few rounds in…

Family 385 Family 403


Shooting my son’s shotgun with self defense loads. That was a bit of a kick:)

I ran a few runs with Eleanor(the AR), our friend’s AK, my M&P, my Shield(liking that thing more and more) and M’s .22.

Family 410


Our son taking his turn.

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E wanted to try everything, M wouldn’t touch a thing other than the .22. Not the 9mm, not a single rifle…nothing. Which really isn’t that big of deal because she thoroughly enjoyed shooting her gun and that is a big, big win!


Family 428

E asked to shoot the steel, so we let her! We started her out fairly close. Maybe 25 yards. Plink, plink, plink. 3 for 3. We moved her back and plink, plink, plink. Again we moved her back. At this point we took her ear protection off. She is deaf, but wears Cochlear implants. With her ears on she can’t hear a thing, so we removed them for a few rounds to let her hear the sound of her round on the plate. It was pretty motivating for her. We kept moving her back. She was 15 for 15 and asked if we thought she could win any competitions  She wants to compete…

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We ended the day with our own little working party.





A Gift

One of the presents I received for Christmas was a beautiful collage and lots of family pictures to fill it with.

We had scheduled a photo session with our photographer friend, but due to The Boy getting hurt we had to cancel and then due to a series of unfortunate events, we were not able to reschedule  I was bummed.

Unbeknownst to me, my oldest son and his wife secretly had a photo session with the young kids while I was running an over night EMT shift.
Family 114


Beautiful A

Family 119

E”s got personality.

Family 138

A, The Boy and E

Family 154 Family 169 Family 195

That’s our pup Wesson causing trouble.

Family 221 Family 286The future of America…

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I was so surprised and touched. Do I have great(and super cute) kids or what?!


Joint Task Force For School Safety

As a reminder, for the past year or so my husband and I have been trying to get our school district to take proactive measures to help protect the children who attend schools here. We are not people who believe it is possible to fully, 100%, guarantee anyone’s safety. It is possible that even with good solid plans in place and even if those plans are properly implemented, that harm could come to one of our children while in the care of the school. Life is a risk and we accept that, however, we also believe there are ways to up the odds in favor of preventing or limiting harm from anyone trying to commit a violent criminal act.

We have mostly received the polite smile and pat on the head treatment. After the events in Connecticut I wrote to the principal of our little one’s school and stated again that I hoped those in charge were not using the fingers crossed and hope nothing bad happens here approach. I informed them that if they did nothing more and something did happen here, it would not go unnoticed by me. I, once again, offered them a wide variety of resources to consult.

I do not think my meetings, phone calls, emails or strongly worded letters made a bit of difference, but I did receive a mass email that gave me hope they were listening to someone if not me. I see a lot of very positive statements.


The newly formed Joint Task Force, under the direction of the XXX Sheriff, School Superintendent, and County Administrator, met again on December 31, 2012, to debrief on recent school assessments by the Sheriff’s Office and to enhance and strengthen current safety and crisis plan implementation, which included immediate, short-term and long-term safety measures.

During the winter break, all elementary schools were assessed by the Sheriff’s Office and School Staff. This assessment provided valuable information that will be used as the Task Force moves forward with enhancing safety measures at school buildings. When students and staff return to school on January 2, 2013, the Sheriff’s Office will continue an enhanced presence at the Elementary schools and School Resource Officers will continue to be on site in the Middle and High schools. Staff assignments specific to monitoring grounds and buildings will be in place at all elementary schools. Increased communications measures will be in place. Additionally, enhanced staff training provided by the Sheriff’s Office will begin this week.

The Task Force is also working to develop a volunteer program that will enable citizens and parents to help monitor grounds and buildings and provide additional eyes and ears at the schools. More details are forthcoming.

Other items discussed included County and School staff partnering to explore potential grant opportunities that might assist in securing additional funding for the safety enhancements recommended by the Task Force and to provide additional school staff training in conjunction with the Sheriff’s Office and first responders such as fire and rescue.

Members of the Joint Task Force include Dr. XXX XXX, XXX School Superintendent, Sheriff XXX, and XXX, XXX County Administrator, as well as staff from each entity including fire and rescue and principals. The purpose of the Joint Task Force is to streamline communications between entities and create efficiencies in the review, development, and implementation of safety measures. The group will meet on an ongoing basis to discuss the progress of school safety enhancements. The next Joint Task Force meeting is planned for early January.

We shall see what, if any action actually comes from this.