Sunday, May 30, 2010

Memorial Day 2010

Were it not for those who have gone before,
For those who wrote our Constitution,
This blog would be moot.

Our rights as we know them,
Would not exist.

Take time out today and remember our Founding Fathers.
Remember our soldiers who have fought and died for our Country.
For our Lifestyle.

For once we forget....
Their lives have been for naught.

My Dear Husband said it best:

Living veterans should be celebrated not just on Veterans day but EVERY DAY. Memorial day was set aside as a somber contemplative day to remember those men and women who gave all so we could live FREE in the greatest country in the world. To remember that freedom is not free and the price those individuals paid in blood made us who we are.


Thursday, May 27, 2010

Proper Gun Use

Lee Lofland over at Graveyard Shift has an amazing, thought provoking post up right now called "Shoot to wound?  No way!"

I suggest y'all head over to his place and read what he's got to say and remember what I tell my children and my shooting friends:  "Pulling a gun is not a threat - it's a promise that you are willing and able to take another's life."  The bill that has been introduced expecting Police Officers to shoot to wound is absolutely absurd.  You shoot to neutralize the threat and if neutralizing the threat means that the bad guy dies, then that's just a natural consequence of their behavior.

Sunday, May 23, 2010


GunDiva, thank you for posting for Mama Tink's tag!! Like you, I am somewhat breaking the rules on the photo op, since I have yet to get around to putting pictures in actual folders.

And since this IS a gun friendly zone, we needed to have some gun "porn", right?


I dug through and found the eighth picture of Dear Husband's first custom job:

His Springfield Armory 1911 .45ACP.

(Pay homage to the Prophet, John Moses Browning!)

Beaver tail
main spring housing
all springs
trigger job
magazine release
added magazine well
added front strap
changed grips...

I'm thinking there was more, but for the life of me I can't remember all of them. When this project started, it was a plain jane, base model 1911.

Ended up kinda nice looking!

It did find a new home. Dear Husband plans on creating another one, and said he will gladly pimp himself out to customize for other folks.

One last note from Dear Husband:
"Attention All Shooters:

Keeping your booger hook OFF the bang button will keep you from NEGLIGENTLY discharging your firearm into the FLOOR! Placing the firearm on the table and asking for help (not sweeping me with a loaded weapon when you turn to ask for help) will keep YOU from getting shot with an INTENTIONAL discharge from MY weapon!!!!!

Y'all think about that one.....

Friday, May 21, 2010

We Got Tagged!

MamaTink tagged Mrs Mom and me with a photo challenge.  The challenge was to go into our eighth photo folder and choose the eighth photo and tell the story about it.  I bent the rules just a little bit...since this is Girls With Guns, I went into my shooting photos and chose the eighth photo.

I was pretty excited to see this picture actually.  This was taken in December in '06 or '07.  I was out with my brother, Deejo, and several friends for one of our legendary "marathon" shooting days.  We took out our handguns and shotguns.  Take a close look at the *cases* of clays by the truck.  We shot them all.

The shotgun I'm shooting is one I built from the receiver up and is the one I called my 12-guage flashlight.  Tara Janzen built one just like it and it appeared in a couple of her books as the "Skeeter Special".  It is a Remington 870 with an 18 1/2" barrel, extended mag tube, side-saddle, and SureFire forend.  It weighed in (unloaded) at a mere 12.5 pounds.

The black shotgun my brother is shooting (you can't see it well) is one I built for him for his Christmas present.  His shotgun also makes an appearance in one of Tara's books, as Red Dog's shotgun.  Deejo's shotgun is also a Remington 870 with an 18 1/2" barrel, extended mag tube and side-saddle.  He declined the SureFire forend, saying it added too much weight to the gun.  Whatever.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Who Is GunDiva? The End

Betcha thought I'd never get around to the end of this little who am I?  Let's see, I started it to give you some insight to how I became who I am.  Finally, after eight million posts, I'm getting there and it may be a little anti-climactic.

Even though I went around armed all the time, I hadn't really committed myself to using that little gun.  I thought I could, but I didn't know  I could.

One day, the kids and I were on our way to a soccer game and we pulled into a McDonald's drive-thru for a rare treat (remember, broke single mother - McDonald's for dinner was like steak and lobster).  I had noticed a car had followed us off of the highway and into the drive-thru, but I didn't think a whole lot about it because everyone stops at that McDonald's.

I pulled up to the order box and noticed that the driver of the car behind us got out of the car and my heart stopped.  Crazy B sauntered up to my car as I looked around for an escape.  There was a line of cars in front of me and his car parked behind; there was no escape.  I yelled into the order box for them to call the police.  They answered with a "what?".  I yelled to call the police a second time and then turned toward Crazy B.

His stalking in the past had been a major annoyance, but I'd never been truly frightened until that moment.  In that split second, I flipped from thinking I could kill someone to knowing I could do it.  The problem was that since I was going to play in a soccer game, I left the Noisy Cricket at home.  I couldn't play with it strapped to my hip and I sure the hell wasn't going to leave it unsecured in my soccer bag on the sideline.

He tried talking to me and I calmly and clearly told him to leave me alone, then turned to the order box and very clearly stated that I was being stalked and that they needed to call the police.  I knew that they weren't going to do it if I was screaming hysterically at them, so I issued it as an order.  They still didn't do it.  (Too busy consulting their manager for permission, I suppose.  Oh, who am I kidding?  They didn't want to get involved.)

I became a broken record, refusing to get pulled into a conversation with Crazy B.  I just kept repeating that he needed to leave me alone and go away.  The kids were absolutely silent and, I'm sure, terrified. 

He finally turned and left, backing out of the drive-thru.  I placed my order and drove to the pay window, still shaken up, but managed to not kill the kid working the drive up for not calling the police.  I couldn't get out of there and to my game fast enough.  I made sure that he didn't follow us onto the highway as I sped off to my game.

Crazy B laid low for a few weeks before showing up at my front door (we'd moved and I hadn't forwarded anything, so he should not have known where I lived).  I met him at the door with the Noisy Cricket and told him on no uncertain terms that he would NOT be bothering me or the kids again and that the next time he showed up, I would kill him.  I meant it, and he knew I meant it.

In retrospect, he did me a favor by trapping me in the drive-thru.  He made me, in that moment, commit to defending myself.  Through that terrifying episode, he gave me the confidence I needed to protect myself and the heathi.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

What Would You Do.....?

The other day ago, a very dear friend of mine related a story to me that was humorous, because I know her, but also fairly alarming to me.

She had gone to WallyWorld (Oh Boy! It's our favorite place for scary encounters!!) to fill a prescription for her young daughter. There was to be a substantial wait, during which time Gramma offered to take Daughter to the truck so she could rest. Upon asking- again- when the script would be ready, my friend decided to go and gather other supplies at another store, and return in an hour to get the medication.

Now, let me describe my friend to you. She is six feet tall, lean, strong as an ox, and known to be incredibly creative, determined, and take NO crap from ANYONE. She walked on out of the store, into the parking lot- with an expression of determination/ stress/ tiredness/ etc on her face.

And some crazy dude (he had to be crazy. Who in their RIGHT MIND would approach a six foot tall woman who looked pissed off?) accosted her- stepped directly in her path of travel, got all too close to her, and asked, "Are you a Democrat or a Republican?"

Remember when I said my friend was creative?
Her reply to Crazy Man was, "I'm a convicted felon." She also slid her hand into her purse, as if putting a hand on her pistol.

Now after I got done busting a gut laughing at her convicted felon line, (she isn't,) I thought about the story some more and found a few things to be quite alarming.

1) If someone is THAT DETERMINED to approach you, He Has A Purpose and May Not Be Operating Alone. A quick check of your surroundings is well in order.

2) She was unarmed. I am quite uncomfortable with a bluff. This time, that and her answer and physical bearing served her well to back the Creepy Determined Man off. But what if she had been a 5' 4" tall, soft looking blonde, who also tried the bluff and it didn't work?

3) Purse Carry. I. Hate. It. If you are going to carry, carry it ON you. Where you can get your gun with speed. (But to be fair, I also detest purses and refuse to carry one.)

(Again- WalMart corporate policy is allow carry, but prefer it concealed.)

I know what *I'd* have done in this instance-- but I'd like to see a bit of discussion from readers on YOUR plan of action.

-Would you stop? Keep going? Go faster?
-Do you look around?
-Have cell phone in hand to speed dial 911?
-Go back to the store and request an escort?
-Tell the encroaching potential threat to f*ck off?
-Report to management that there is a nut in the parking lot accosting shoppers?
-Wait for the "security" car to drive by?

(I SO have issue with the "security" patrols provided here. Don't know about the rest of the Wallyworld shopping populace, but if someone is providing SECURITY, please--- do not be 300#. Do not sit in vehicle, with windows rolled up, BluTooth thing jammed in your ear, radio going, driving about looking as if you were Lost In Space. Do I feel "secure" with you chumbawumbas "protecting" me? HELL NO! Which would be why I choose to protect MYSELF.)

Come on folks- let's hear what YOUR plan would be. Let's get a good educational discussion going.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Winner, Winner!

I know it's been a week since I posted the contest and I haven't posted any winners.  I'm so sorry.  But.  It's finally done.  Using a Random Name Picker from, I chose two winners; one for each book.

  • GIFT OF FEAR goes to Linda Medrano
  • PROTECTING THE GIFT goes to Michelle Pixie
Winners, please email me ( with your physical addresses and I'll get these out in the mail to you ASAP.

As a side note, shortly (like the day after) the random name picker chose Michelle, she received some bad news about her little one, Monkey.  Jump on over to her site, Momma's Pixie Dreams, and send her some bloggy love and prayers.

Monday, May 10, 2010

The First Rule Of Firearm Safety?

"The Gun Is ALWAYS Loaded!"

This is a sticking point in our house. Even at work, where Dear Husband KNOWS the guns in the case are unloaded and confirmed "clear", he still racks the slide and physically LOOKS in the chamber to make sure.

Why? Because you never assume something is unloaded.

That leads to Negligent Discharges.

And Negligent Discharges Lead To Injury and Death.

Just dropping the magazine from your pistol does NOT make it safe. Proper protocol for handing over a gun:
- Drop the magazine
-Rack the slide back several times, to ensure a clear chamber
- Lock slide back
-THEN hand it to the other person, with the slide locked back. And ONLY then.

The person on the receiving end:
- Check the chamber
- Unlock and rack the slide
- Examine weapon
- Lock slide BACK when handing firearm back to original person

I heard a story not long ago about two people who are both Firearms Educated. One uses a handgun for a living. One shoots on a regular basis. Both know the Golden Rule that A Gun Is Always Loaded.

A moment of inattention caused a Negligent Discharge to occur.

No one was hurt (thankfully.)

Think about it folks-- once that projectile leaves the barrel, there is no getting it back until it comes to a rest.

Why am I not calling this an accident?
Because plain and simple, it was not. It was negligence on BOTH parties part. The original gun holder for ONLY dropping the magazine and NOT clearing the chamber, and the receiver for NOT taking a moment to clear the chamber.

That is not an accident.

That is stupidity.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Shooting Fish In A Barrel

Friday afternoon, I received this email from the school district:

Good afternoon! We had a false alarm this afternoon after school with a report of possible weapons on campus. Several of us immediately ran around the outside of the building and told students to get inside for a lock down. The good news is they all responded and ran inside within seconds. Even better news is that police were given wrong information. The report was for another city. As you know, we’d rather error on the side of caution and were proud of the students for their quick response.
Hope you have a good uneventful weekend!
Signed, Principal
 Can I tell you how wrong this is?  Not the email notification, per se, but the whole lock-down thing.  I am so opposed to locking children in a classroom "to keep them safe".  Tell me, what is so safe about locking thirty children in a classroom, without an escape, if there is someone in the building with a weapon.

I had friends at Columbine, I spent a sleepless night waiting to hear if they were okay.  As the disturbing reports came out about Klebold and Harris mowing down students who were hunkered down in the library, my heart broke.  One of my closest friends little sister usually spent her lunch hour in the library doing homework.  On that fateful day, she allowed herself to be talked into going out to McDonald's with her friends.  She *hated* McDonald's, but got browbeaten into going.  That decision may have saved her life.

In response to Columbine, schools all over the nation started having "lock-down" drills or reverse fire drills.  To keep our children safe.  Safe?  Are you kidding?  Did they learn nothing from Columbine?  What happened to the students trapped in the library?  Think about it.  What happened?

Now think about what happened to the children who ran for their lives.  How many of those children died?

Yet the powers that be who run the schools decided it was safer to lock-down our kids, which means that they are herded into classrooms, the doors locked, lights turned off and they're expected to be quiet.  Excuse me, but who can be quiet when there's some lunatic going room to room mowing down our "safe" children?

I understand the school's position.  I really do.  They have to be able to account for the children.  They are tasked with keeping them safe while on their property.  How can they do that if the students are told to run?  I get it.  I also know that if one of my children is ever hurt because of a lock-down, I'm gonna own myself a school district.

My children, from the moment the Columbine incident hit the news, have been told to run.  I don't care about the school's rules. 


The principal and I can go head-to-head after the fact, but my children are to run as far as as fast as they can.

While they were in junior high, I introduced them to a teacher who I shot competitively with, Mr. H.  I made my wishes very clear to Mr. H.  That if there was ever an incident on school property, my children were to go to his classroom (if they were close enough) and he would let them out the back door (he had one of the few classrooms with an outside door).  If my kids weren't close to Mr. H.'s class, they were to find the nearest exit and RUN.  They could call me from wherever they ended up to let me know they were okay.

Sometimes, you have to break the rules to stay safe.  I've taught my children that it's okay to do so.  There are safety "rules" that are just plain stupid.  School lock-downs are just plain stupid.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Colorado State University Rescinds Gun Ban

Until recently, CSU banned CCW permit holders from carrying concealed on campus.  Please don't ask if I ever followed the CSU "law" on this one, because you all know the answer to that.  They've recently come to their senses.

The CSU people are not happy about it, but given the option of facing a long, expensive lawsuit levied against them by Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO) or rescinding the ban, they chose wisely.  The could have bowed out gracefully (which they chose to do) or paid a lot of money to fight it and been forced to do it anyway.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The Art Of Awareness

Situational Awareness.
A Sixth Sense.
Spidey Senses.

In other words, PAYING ATTENTION to your surroundings.

Many of us have it- that "gut instinct" that tells us when something is not quite right with any given situation. But how many of us listen to it? How many put the phone call on hold, or Stop the D@mn Texting, or bother to pull yourself out of the daze you wander about in to listen- REALLY listen- to your gut?

Not many. Not many at all. No where near enough actually.

We are a distraction driven society, which unfortunately makes us easy targets for Bad Guys. (Because they tend to Pay Attention, looking for an easy mark.)

If we understand the mechanics of how a Bad Guy picks a target, we can formulate an awareness for certain behaviors, and learn to avoid people exhibiting those behaviors. The first thing a Bad Guy does is create a Profile. He is making up his mind what he is looking for, and who he can get it from. (Does he want money? Jewelery? Sex? Just to beat the ever loving sh*t out of someone?)

The next stage: Observe.
If you feel like you are being watched, you probably are. Look around. Make eye contact. Note details. Watch who is off to either side of you, and behind you. Look for alternative routes of travel. If you are in a store, look for other people and work your way into a group.

If you are in a parking lot alone, turn around and high tail it back into the store, or to another person.

MAKE NOISE. Sometimes "crazy" can save your hide.

If Bad Guy reaches the next stage, it is because you did not "feel" the warning prickle of being under observation. His next move is stalking. Just like any predator, he is going to stalk you. Follow you. From a distance at first, and then closer. A test bump, much like that of a shark (thankfully with no accidental nipping,) may be deployed, to see how easy you may be to get close to.

By then, you are not far from the last stage- where Bad Guy will Commit to his chosen act, and turn your otherwise nice day into a really crappy one. We all know the outcome of that event.

What brought about this post today?

Today I had to get supplies for the Locust Brothers. We were in WallyWorld-- a place decidedly NOT on my Favorite Places List-- when *that* feeling hit. *That* voice in my mind said, "Hey- you might need to hurry up and get out of here." I had the Locust Brothers with me. We were almost done, getting our frozen veggies, when *That* feeling and voice hit. I looked around again, and noticed a man, about 150 pounds, maybe in his early 30's, 5' 7" tall, grungy clothes, dirty work boots, standing with his back to me simply staring into the frozen veggie case like it held Nirvana.

Until I saw he was using the reflective surface of the glass to scope people out as they walked by. The hair on the back of my neck stood up (no mean feat there- I have a LOT of hair these days,) and that warning voice went into overdrive telling me to GET OUT. GET OUT NOW.

We did. I grabbed my frozen peas and got the kids out of there as quickly as I could. We were at the check out, and I looked at my list and realized... I had forgotten something Very Important. The warning voice said, "You have half a roll left, you can make do until tomorrow." I looked at my sons, and knew that half a roll of TP was no where near enough. We wheeled around and headed to the back of the store to the paper goods. On our way, we passed the frozen section again-- and that same man was still standing there, staring at the glass. Nothing in his hands, no cart, no movement other than his eyes in the glass when someone passed.

Sure- he could have just been deciding what type of frozen corn to buy. He could have been shopping for a better price on the peas. He could be one of those poor dudes who thinks that the best place to meet women is in the grocery store.

But maybe not.

We grabbed the TP, motored on up to the front of the store again. I carried Plan B in my wasitband, and I did check it's position a couple of times. But the biggest thing I did was to look around, look for alternative exits, look closer at the other people near me, and I listened to my gut. We got the heck out of Dodge. Once in the parking lot, the Locust Brothers loaded up into the truck quickly and buckled up, while I lifted my shirt to uncover Plan B. I loaded our stuff into the truck as quickly as I could, and we hit the road running. Five miles later, my skin finally stopped crawling.

Did something happen?

Could it have?
Shoot, "IT" could happen at any time, anywhere. This is far (FAR) from the first time this WallyWorld has felt less-than-safe to me.

What could I have done differently?
Well, for one, I should have gone to Kroger. Their corporate policy on firearms is to allow open carry (in GA). Kroger is known to be 2A supporters, and in states that allow open carry, they encourage it. For two.... well, I don't know. The man staring into the glass had no visible weapon. He had nothing in his hands, had made no gestures, said nothing at all, and not moved towards me. There was no *logical* reason to suspect that anything was wrong. All I had to go on was intuition, and noting he was watching people in the glass, and not scoping out the frozen delights in front of him. It seemed my best choice at the time was to move on with quickness. (WallyWorld firearms policy: allow carry, but prefer to keep it concealed.)

Lesson Learned:
Look closer. Watch harder. Listen to my gut. Practice remembering small details, so that a description can be given at a later date.

Stay aware out there folks. No, not everyone is "out to get us", but we live in a society where our responsibility to protect ourselves is extremely high. Do a good job, and don't become a statistic please.

Who Is GunDiva? Part III

If you're just joining us, you can get caught up by reading Part I and Part II.

I've been stalling writing this part, so please forgive me if it's kind of choppy and vague (I'll try to write cohesive sentences).  I didn't realize, until I started this series how tough it was going to be to re-visit the past.

Part of the reason that Crazy B wanted to become a certified Protection Specialist was that he'd already wrangled up a client; the wife of a prominent doctor who was being stalked.  Her husband knew of Crazy B's law enforcement background and approached him about his wife's little stalker problem.  Crazy B even managed to talk the client into paying for his certification. 

We did the paperwork to become an S-corp and went into business. 

I complete his course work, he completed his Resident Training and our price went up.  The plan was for us to get the business off the ground and then I would attend ESI. 

During the brief period of time we were in business, he'd purchased a little Beretta Bobcat .25 caliber for me to carry while we were working.  Keep in mind that we didn't have CCWs, we didn't have a Sheriff who supported the CCW law.  Crazy B managed to talk a friend of his, who happened to be Chief of Police in another city, into issuing him a CCW so that he could carry legally.  I could not, which was the reasoning behind buying me the Noisy Cricket. 

Very long story short: Crazy B ran up a lot of bills, slept with our client, pissed off the other protection agency in town and ended up running off to Texas, where he spent some time in jail and I got to deal with the FBI (and the very pissed off other protection agency).

When he ran off to Texas, I kept my gun.  Turns out that was a very smart move.

I chalked it up to a tough lesson learned and wrote him off.

And then he returned.  The man who slept with our client, destroyed our business (not to mention what little relationship we'd had), came back and had the audacity to get upset when he found out I'd moved on.  Like upset enough to start threatening my new boyfriend.  Like upset enough to start slashing my tires.  Like upset enough to start being a royal pain in the butt and make me start carrying 24/7, CCW be damned.

I went everywhere with that Noisy Cricket, it never left my hip.  I had it within arm's reach when I showered.  I kept it in my CD holder above my sun visor in the car.  When I was on campus, it was in a small, easily accessible compartment in my computer bag. 

I. Was. Never. Unarmed. Ever.

Thank God for de Becker.  I found him while I was doing Crazy B's coursework for ESI.  I kept the books.  They were such a great help during all of this.

Monday, May 3, 2010


A friend of mine, who is a coroner's investigator, and who has been in law enforcement for fifteen years or so tipped me off to this website,

Spokeo compiles all public information and makes it available via the internet.  Their slogan: "Not your grandma's phone book."  They're right; it's not your grandma's phone book - this is super scary.  Since they compile information from public sources, they have a scary amount of information out there.  You can search by name, email address, phone number, etc.  If you don't want your name out there on Spokeo, you can have it removed, which I encourage all of you to do.

To remove your information:
  • Search your name on Spokeo
  • If there are multiple people with your name, choose the correct one.  When the file opens, your personal URL will appear in the URL box at the very top of the screen.
  • Click on your URL to highlight it and then copy it (either right-mouse-click copy or Ctrl+C)
  • On the bottom of the screen, look for the word "Privacy" in small grey letters.
  • Click on "Privacy", a new window will open up.
  • Scroll to the bottom of the new window and paste your URL (either right-mouse-click paste or Ctrl+V)
  • Fill in your email address (for them to send the confirmation email)
  • Complete the word verification
  • Don't worry when the screen pops back up with a different word verification - I kept thinking that it hadn't gone through and filled it out about a million times.  It worked the first time and then I had a million confirmation emails to delete :)
  • After you've completed the steps, you can close the privacy window.
  • I then checked my email, completed the confirmation email and performed the search again on Spokeo.  I had, indeed, been removed.
  • Note:  there may be muliple "yous" in the system.  I had two, a friend of mine had three.  Search by name, phone number, email to make sure you've removed all of the "yous" from the system.  Be sure to have your children do this as well.
I have to tell you, sites like this scare the hell out of me, especially after having been stalked.  I refuse to hide forever (heck, I've got three blogs, a FB and a MySpace account), but I will do whatever I can to limit the amount of personal information that is readily available.

Verified via Snopes: