Monday, May 21, 2018

May - Week 21 - Illinois - the Prairie State

21 Illinois
Date admitted to the US – December 3, 1818
Postal abbreviation – IL
Capital – Springfield
Area – 57,914.38 [25th largest in the US]
Population as of census 2010 – 12,830,632 [5th largest in the US]
Population density per square mile – 231.1 [12th largest in the US]
Area codes – 217, 309, 312, 618, 630, 708, 773, 815, 847
Zip codes – 60001 - 62999
Number of counties – 102
State nickname –  Prairie State
State motto – State Sovereignty, National Union

State Flag of Illinois
Fun facts
-The world's first Skyscraper was built in Chicago in 1885.
-The Sears Tower, in Chicago, is the tallest building in North America.
-Metropolis, the home of Superman, really exists in Southern Illinois.
-Illinois was the first state to ratify the 13th Amendment to the Constitution abolishing slavery.
-Des Plaines is home to the first McDonald's.
-The Illinois state dance is square dancing.
-Illinois has the highest number of personalized license plates of any state.
-The trains that pass through Chicago's underground freight tunnels daily, if parked end to end, would extend over ten miles.
-The slogan of 105.9, Chicago's classic rock radio station, is 'Of all the radio stations in Chicago...we're one of them.'
-Illinois has a wide variety of weather:  major winter storms, deadly tornadoes, and spectacular heat and cold episodes.
-The Chicago Public Library is the world's largest public library, with a collection of more than 2 million books.
-The Chicago River is dyed green on Saint Patrick's Day.

Law Schools
-University of Chicago Law School
-Chicago - Kent College of Law
-DePaul University College of Law
-University of Illinois College of Law
-John Marshall Law School
-Loyola University Chicago College of Law
-Northern Illinois University College of Law
-Northwestern University School of Law
-Southern Illinois University School of Law

Military facts
Military schools
Military bases

Monday, May 14, 2018

May - Week 20 - Mississippi - the Magnolia State

20 Mississippi
Date admitted to the US – December 10, 1817
Postal abbreviation – MS
Capital – Jackson
Area – 48,430.19  [32nd largest in the US]
Population as of census 2010 – 2,967,297  [31st largest in the US]
Population density per square mile – 63.2  [33rd largest in the US]
Area codes – 228, 601, 662
Zip codes – 38601 - 39776
Number of counties – 82
State nickname –  Magnolia State
State motto – "Virtute et armis" - By valor and arms  

Mississippi State Flag
Fun facts
-In 1963, the University of Mississippi Medical Center accomplished the world's first human lung transplant and in 1964, Dr. James D. Hardy performed the world's first heart transplant.
-In 1902, while on a hunting expedition in Sharkey County, President Theodore (Teddy) Roosevelt refused to shoot a captured bear. This act resulted in the creation of the world-famous “teddy” bear.
-The world's largest cactus plantation is in Edwards.
-Elvis Presley was born in Tupelo, on January 8, 1935.
-Greenwood is called the Cotton Capital of the World.
-The Mississippi River is the largest river in the United States and is the nation's chief waterway. Its nickname is Old Man River.

Law Schools
-The University of Mississippi School of Law

-Mississippi College School of Law
Military facts
Military Schools
Military Bases

Sunday, May 6, 2018

May - week 19 - Indiana - Hoosier State

19 Indiana

Date admitted to the US – December 11, 1816
Postal abbreviation – IN
Capital – Indianapolis
Area – 36,417.73 [38th largest in the US]
Population as of census 2010 – 6,483,802 [15th largest in the US]
Population density per square mile – 181 [17th largest in the US]
Area codes – 219, 260, 317, 574, 765, 812
Zip codes – 46001 - 47997
Number of counties – 92
State nickname –  Hoosier State
State motto – “The Crossroads of America" 

State Flag of Indiana
Fun facts
-The first long-distance auto race in the US was held May 30, 1911, at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The winner averaged 75 miles per hour and first prize was $14,000. Today the average speed is over 167 miles per hour and the prize is more than $1.2 million. The Indianapolis 500 is 200 laps [500 miles] and is held every Memorial Day weekend in Indianapolis.
-Santa Claus, Indiana receives over half a million letters at Christmas time.
-Parke County has 32 covered bridges and is the Covered Bridge Capital of the World.
-Indiana, the "Cross Roads of America", has more miles of Interstate Highway per square mile than any other state. Today, more major highways intersect in Indiana than in any other state.
-Many Mennonite and Amish live on the farmland of Northeastern Indiana. According to Amish ordnung (rules) they are forbidden to drive cars, use electricity, or go to public places of entertainment.
-Studebaker Company, in South Bend, was the nation's largest producer of horse-drawn wagons. It later developed into a multimillion-dollar automobile manufacturer.
-The Saturday Evening Post is published in Indianapolis.

Law Schools
-Indiana University Bloomington, Maurer School of Law 
-Indiana University, Robert H McKinney School of Law 
-University of Notre Dame Law School 
-Valparaiso University Law

Military facts

Military Schools
Military Bases

Monday, April 30, 2018

A to Z Challenge - Z is for Z Military Pay

Yes, I'm cheating. Shhhhhh.  Don't tell anyone.  As per comment from yesterday's Y post from Colin, Z is for Zoiks! I get paid how much?!  So I'm not cheating =)

Basic Pay is given to active duty military servicemembers on a monthly basis. It is determined by pay grade and length of time in military service. Basic Pay, also known as Base Pay, is the same for all the services.

In 2018, military basic pay increased 2.4%.

In addition to Basic Pay, each servicemember qualifies [or may qualify, depending on other factors] for:

Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) - based on duty location, pay grade, and dependency status. BAH provides equitable housing compensation based on housing costs in local civilian housing markets.  It is payable when government housing is not provided.

Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS) - a continuation of the military tradition of providing room and board (or rations) as part of a servicemember's pay.  Since January 1, 2002 most enlisted members get full BAS, but they must pay for their own meals, even those provided by the government.

Current BAS Rates:
Enlisted: $369.39 per month
Officers: $254.39 per month

Other types of incentive and special pay: -Assignment Incentive Pay

-Aviation Career Pay
-Career Sea Pay
-Diving Duty Pay
-Foreign Language Proficiency Pay
-Hardship Duty Pay
-High Deployment Allowance
-Hostile Fire/Imminent Danger Pay
-Judge Advocate Continuation Pay
-Overseas Extension Pay

-Sea Duty Pay
-Special Pay: Dental Officers
-Special Pay: Medical Officers
-Special Pay: Nurse Corps
-Special Pay: Optometrists
-Special Pay: Pharmacy Officers
-Special Pay: Veterinarians
-Submarine Duty Pay

My son enlisted in January 2013 at E-3 [he enlisted at E-3 instead of E-1 because he was an Eagle Scout].  In 2013, E-1 starting basic pay was $1,403 per month.  His E-3 starting basic pay was $1,788 per month.  So being an Eagle Scout was worth $385 per month!

My son “retired” from active duty in January 2018 at the rank of E-5 with over 4 years of service.  His ending basic pay was $2,733 per month.

A brand new commissioned officer at O-1 would be paid $3,108 per month in 2018.

More information:

That's it for another year of the A to Z Challenge.  Thank you for visiting and leaving comments.  Did you make it all the way through?  Did you enjoy it?  I enjoyed having you =)

The last post of the A to Z Challenge 2018 will be a Reflections post on Monday May 7.  Come back and visit.  Thank you!

Sunday, April 29, 2018

April - week 18 - Louisiana - Sportsman's Paradise

18 Louisiana

Date admitted to the US – April 30, 1812
Postal abbreviation – LA
Capital – Baton Rouge
Area – 51,839.70 [31st largest in the US]
Population as of census 2010 – 4,533,372 [25th largest in the US]
Population density per square mile – 104.9 [23rd largest in the US]
Area codes – 225, 318, 337, 504, 985 
Zip codes – 70001 - 71497
Number of counties [parishes] – 64
State nickname –  Sportsman's Paradise (previously - Pelican State)
State motto – “Union, Justice, and Confidence"  

State Flag of Louisiana

Fun facts
-The world famous Mardi Gras is celebrated in New Orleans. Mardi Gras means Fat Tuesday and celebrates food and fun just before the 40 days of Lent.
-Louisiana has the tallest state capitol building in the United States, 450 feet tall with 34 floors.

-Louisiana is the only state in the union that does not have counties. Its political subdivisions are called parishes.
-Louisiana is the only state that still refers to the Napoleonic Code in its state law.
-In Louisiana, biting someone with your natural teeth is considered a simple assault, but biting someone with your false teeth is considered an aggravated assault.

Law Schools

-Louisiana State University, Paul M. Hebert Law Center
-Loyola University New Orleans College of Law 
-Southern University Law Center 
-Tulane University Law School

Military facts
Military Bases

Saturday, April 28, 2018

A to Z Challenge - Y is for Yeoman

Yeomen are the office workers of the Navy and Coast Guard.  They handle payroll [always important!], prepare travel orders and arrange transportation, draft correspondence, write evaluations and reports, greet visitors, handle telephone calls and mail, and maintain files and administrative records.  Most Yeoman positions are on land, although there are a few positions on-board ships and submarines.

Similar to unit or company clerk in the Army [think Radar on M*A*S*H].

They are still sailors, and are required to complete boot camp and A-school.  And for an "office job", they receive full military benefits and can be deployed overseas.

What's next for Z?
Z is for Military Pay [I wanted to include pay, and this was the best place to do it.  Yes it's not a Z.  So sue me].  How much are brand new enlisted servicemembers paid?  What's the military pay scale?  Benefits?  Come back Monday and find out!