Thursday, June 30, 2011

Tune Time Thursday

LOVE, LOVE,LOVE Thursday's link up with Amber over at Goodnight Moon! I love going to listen to all the music & sometimes discovering something new! This week I wasn't sure what I was in the mood to post until I was on my way home from Post Tuesday afternoon. I was driving down the road flipping through the radio when the familiar sounds of the Indigo Girls came flowing through my car. I smiled & turned it up! Memories came flooding back from my college days with Kristy,Misty, & Amy as we drove down to PCB for Spring Break. Or we where just out running around & had it playing in my car since I was the only one with a vehicle our freshmen year. This song made me smile, calmed me down & of course I sang along!

The video cracks me up with the hair & the ripped jeans -LOL  But the song is still just as good today as it was all those years ago. I hope you enjoy The Indigo Girls  Closer to Fine".

Now you head on over to Goodnight Moon by clicking on the amazing picture above & Link-Up!!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Still waiting....and waiting some more

We had a super relaxing fun filled weekend with the family & good friends. We honestly spent it like it was the last weekend my soldier would be home. We are still waiting on an exact time & date which I know is never exact until they drive away on those awful blue buses. I feel like I am stuck in a horrible limbo or twilight zone. We laugh,watch movies,play with the kids, & then BAM! My bi-polar self starts crying & even yelling on occasions at my poor husband. The poor man has know idea whether to hug me, yell at me, or just walk away.I at least recognize the symptoms this time of me trying to separate from him ahead of time so it might hurt less when he actually leaves . But it is not how he nor I envisioned spending our last few days with him at home. So I will try to pull it together & live as "normally" as possible until he comes home with the dreaded "it's time,here we go". Then I'm sorry all bets are off & I could be Medusa for awhile. Thank goodness my four boys get to fly to their Ommie & Pawpaw's home next week for three weeks of non-stop fun! At least by the time I see them again I will be over the crying every other minute stage & ready to make some fun memories to share with my husband via SKYPE. 

All the last minute packing probably didn't help with the sudden out-bursts of emotions...

  Even poor Heidi is depressed, she knows what it means when all the bags come back out.

Only Jacob laughed & tried to get his daddy to pack him to take to Afghanistan with him.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Gabe a Real American Hero Dog

Gabe is a Retired Canine Military Working Dog who is living out his golden years with his old handler Chuck. Gabe served several tours in Iraq & is a highly decorated dog. He has been nominated in the American Humane Association Hero Dogs competition. I am helping his owner out as he was a good soldier who worked with my husband & also babysat for our family years ago. We have kept in touch with the help of Facebook. We learned of Gabe's chances to WIN if he gets more votes. Please take the time to go VOTE under MILITARY WORKING DOGS for GABE the big lovable yellow Lab! 

If you want to read some more about GABE here is your chance:Gabe & Chuck What a TEAM

 This is just one of many stories about Gabe- a True American Hero. Please go read his story pass it along & VOTE!!  Thanks so much!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thursday Means Tune Time

I love Thursday's link up with Amber from Goodnight Moon so that is why I am blogging away on my old hunk of junk PC. My laptop decided to get a nasty virus earlier this week, so I have been sidelined from blogging until my computer guy get's home from vacation  :0/ I wasn't sure what song I wanted to let you all enjoy this week until I popped in my Saving Jane CD while driving home from the gym on Wednesday. I heard a favorite called Butterflies & it just sums up how I feel about my husband. With him leaving anytime now for another deployment I proceeded to sing along in a very loud off key voice a couple times. I am pretty sure my kids where thankful not to be in our van with me-haha. Because when I came home I immediately jumped on Youtube to locate a video for today's link-up. So with out further ado, I hope you too enjoy Butterflies by Saving Jane.

Now you head on over & link up with Amber or just enjoy some good music at Goodnight Moon .

I love this man, he still gives me Butterflies after 17 years.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Summer Time Means Cookouts

Our group of friends we spend most of our summer days with finally was able to do our first cookout last night on Father's Day. Normally by now we would have already had a few cookouts but this summer has been rainy & dreary in WA. The weather has definitely gone along with our moods over the past few weeks. Most of the time summer doesn't even warm up or start in WA until July. But we start bon-fires & cookout around Memorial Day just like the rest of America except this year. 

We where excited to head on over to Sam's new place yesterday to have our first cookout. It was also a little bitter sweet as we had to do the Army thing & say  "see you later" to a family who we have spent the last three summers with. Another family that has three boys whom two of my boys are close friends with theirs. It was fun to eat the brauts, paint some stemless wine glasses, & just goof off until it was time for it to end. I did fine hugging the mom goodbye it wasn't until her youngest who is best friends with my youngest decided to bear hug my legs.

I wasn't going to hug any of the kids because I didn't want them to see me tear up which happens frequently these days. But as I am walking out the door the little red head that has become so close to my Jacob wasn't having any of my quick goodbye. I told him to have a fun safe trip & the next thing I know he is wrapped around me squeezing away. He only reaches my waist but he hugged me tight & said "goodbye I'll miss you guys.". My heart melted & I squeezed him back then had to walk away fast.

I think this is really the first Army move a friend has made that all my boys understand  their friends are leaving. It has been very hard on my oldest & my youngest. They both played with two of our friends children daily every summer & a lot during the school year. Our older boys even share the same birthdate & have celebrated together. We explained that since their dad is Army they could very well end up right back here after they finish the school their dad has for the next year & a half. But it was little comfort for my youngest. Most days I am grateful that the Army provides for my family & we are blessed to have a steady income. But on days we have to say " see you later" it always STINKS!! This is just the first move to happen in my world . Before my summer is over I have to say goodbye to two more families who are like family- those "see you later's" are going to be heart breaking as well. For now I will enjoy the time we have left & I look forward to more fun cookout's through out the summer.

 One last picture to remember all the fun over the past few years we all had together.

I snapped one last picture of the older boys all hanging out down at the park.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

He Makes Me Happy

Happy Father's Day to my amazing best friend & husband! He is the best dad to our four boys & it always makes me smile when I see them goofing off together. We are so blessed to have eachother. I am so glad God joined us together & blessed us four times. I made a short little video using background music I heard from this weeks song link up over at Goodnight Moon. It's Lindsey Ray  "You Make Me Happy"  the lovely Crafty Camo Lover  had it linked up. When I heard it I LOVED IT! I must have listened to it all day long on Thursday. I hope you enjoy the video & everyone has a Happy Father's Day. 

My dad, my brother with his son Chris, my husband with our oldest Hunter on the boys first camping trip together in Alaska in 1998.

Also happy Father's Day to my wonderful dad! I love you very much & am so blessed that God put you in our lives. Here is a picture of my dad with my four boys who love him so much too.

This was taken when my youngest was only two weeks old- I really hope to get some updated pictures this summer when I go home to Tennessee for a week.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Are You Really Happy for Me?

I was talking with a friend on the phone yesterday another Army Wife who ROCKS! We where discussing her husband's new orders & where they are PCS'ing too shortly. I told her how excited & happy I was that he would be non-deployable for a few years. They could finally have some down time & start their family. Baby making had been put on hold due to multiple deployments so now was their chance! We joked around about how they had "lucked" out on their duty station. I also said I wish it was us.....ooppss did that really come out of my mouth?? Why, yes, yes it did. I would be totally lying to her & myself if I didn't admit I was a tiny bit jealous. I would love for our family to have down time for a couple years even if it meant moving. It doesn't hurt they are moving someplace super sunny year round. But just because I am admitting I wish we could get that assignment doesn't mean I am not happy for her.

I really know that uprooting my children after being here in WA for almost ten years is not a good idea. But when weighed against an opportunity to have their dad & my husband home for a few years it is very tempting. I am not wallowing or feeling sorry for myself. I love that my children have had a more stable life then most military kids due to all of Jeremy's medical needs. This has been both a blessing & a curse. We have watched a lot of good friends move away . But we have also been right here when they sometimes get to come back! I really think that being happy & jealous all at the same time goes with the territory of being a Military spouse. I think it is how you deal with those feelings & your outlook on your own situation that determines how well you can handle it all. I am choosing to help plan going away parties, special day trips to our favorite restaurants,& setting up our SKYPE so we can enjoy our time left together. Then we can stay in touch when they move away & we stay behind.

So if your feeling a little blue because your friends are moving & June is the Army time of the year to plan moves. Just remember there are a lot of little things you can do to keep that friendship growing even when your miles apart.I've learned that friendship can grow & thrive even over the longest of distances. Here are a few of my favorite things to do when my dearest friends move away.

1. Buy an assortment of greeting cards & have them on hand. That way if you talk to your friend you always have a card ready to mail that may fit any conversation you all had over the phone/computer. Who doesn't love getting the unexpected card in the mail!

2. SKYPE- this is newer but just as fun! I can sit in my living room watching my favorite TV shows at the same time as my friend- we can discuss why Dr. McDreamy left Meredith?? What was he thinking?

3. Take a Road Trip! If they only moved a couple states away plan a fun road trip to see each other. While my soldier is gone I plan on doing just that with the kids. He is not excited about long car trips- I could care less- so it's a perfect way to give us something to look forward to doing. Plus you introduce your kids to a lot of new experiences.

4. Girls Only trip- YEP you can also take one of these to a fun destination. If you can get a babysitter if you have children then YAY!! Maybe you only have fur babies- get their shots up to date & find a good kennel. I am planning one of these trips as well if it works out I'll let you know.

5. Facebook- leave fun little WALL posts to cheer each along in your new paths in life. I love waking up to posts on my FB wall that are from a friend. It's all good & fine to leave a "like" or "comment" under their posts- but taking the time to actually leave a post is WAY BETTER!! It let's them know you where thinking of them & took the time to tell them.

These are just a few of my favorite things to do to stay in touch. I am open to any & all suggestions from other lovely BLOGGERS & Military Spouses. As far as I am concerned you can never have enough fun easy ideas to let your friends know you care.

"Good friends are like stars, you don't always see them, but you know they're always there."

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Tune Time Thursday

I have had quite the week & really haven't had time to enjoy much music this week. But after some thought last night I decided to Honor my Daddy since Father's Day is approaching. My dad is so amazing as most little girls do I  think my dad is the best. He is always available for me to call even when he is in the middle of work. He loves to take all my boys every where with him when he get's the chance.He is the best example of what a good christian father should be & I love that my boys adore him. I can only hope that all the summers they are blessed to spend with him his kind ways & christian example leaves an imprint on their hearts. I can never say thank you enough for all he has done for me. I hope he always know how much I love him & am so thankful God brought him into my mom's life so he could become my dad.

I have two songs to share as both are great & I couldn't pick just one. The first is Holly Dunn & Daddy's Hands. I couldn't find a good video with just Holly so I picked one that included Dolly Parton as well.

My second pick is Brad Paisley's  He didn't have to be. This song makes me cry everytime. For all those dad's that chose to be a daddy when they didn't have to be you have my admiration & respect.

Now don't forget you can go link up with Amber over at Goodnight Moon to hear more fabulous song picks of the week. I look forward to it every Thursday!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

IV's + Cranky Nurse + Air Bubbles = INSANITY

I really should have known that yesterday was going to turn into a medical circus from the moment Jeremy refused to let them put in his IV for his laser surgery. He hasn't done that in almost four years! He is usually the happiest ,go lucky patient in the world. Not yesterday - no sir! He wasn't having anything nice to say to the anesthesiologist at all! After I finally talked him in to holding still he let them stick the IV into his hand but screamed until the gas knocked him out!

The surgery went well & he woke up screaming for a few minutes then fell back to sleep. The doctors wheeled him down to recovery & we where met by an older nurse. As soon as she started talking to me & asking questions I got a feeling in my stomach she was not the best nurse for us today. But unfortunately at Madigan you can't just switch nurses with out cause so I just let Jeremy sleep for awhile & went with the flow. I got to catch up with a couple of nurses & doctors that know us as we are "frequent flyers" so that was nice. Then they asked me to try & gently wake Jeremy up so we could get discharged if it went well. I was able to wake him up with only a few tears & the request to go home. He then noticed his IV was still in and very politely asked the nurse "can you please let mom take this out?". I smiled & said "I think we should let your nurse take the IV out so it won't hurt. Mom doesn't know how to take IV's out.". Well that cranky old nurse rolled her eyes, sighed & said loud enough for Jeremy to hear " I don't know why you parents tell the kids we can take the IV's out with out it hurting! Now when it hurts he is going to be mad!."  I was so SHOCKED I just stared for maybe thirty seconds, but just long enough for Jeremy to let her know what he thought. He looks at her and screams at the top of his lungs " NO,NO, NO, you are MEAN!! I DON'T Like You!!"  I was trying not to laugh but was thinking GO JEREMY!! Immediately this really nice Captain named Ken stepped in as she walked away murming under her breath. He asked Jeremy what was wrong? Then he preceded to go out of his way to take Jeremy's IV out very slowly & wheel us all the way out the door to our car. Turns out Nurse Ken was the guy in charge that day, so I hope he let cranky nurse have it when he got back to the recovery room!

Off we drive away home thinking YAY we are done for the day! I promised Jeremy cartoons all day & 7-up. We get home relax & wait for his brothers to get home from school. Everyone arrives home all seems well for the moment. We make Jacob's birthday dinner & right in the middle of eating Jeremy sits straight up on the couch. He starts crying big alligator tears & saying that his lungs hurt! I go check & when I touch his chest he howls. I call the clinic & they are closing because it's 5:30PM so they refer us to the ER . I call & they say we can either wait to see if it get's worse or drive back to get him looked at now. I chose to go back because Jeremy rarely complains unless he is really in pain. I know this will most likely mean a long ER visit so I grab snacks for Jeremy, his blanket, stuffed wolf, & a new book for me. Change him into his Pj's & off we go to Madigan, again.

We arrive & get triaged pretty fast due to Jeremy's swollen face & earlier surgery. As soon as they realize not only is he having chest pain he has Sturge-Weber we are in super fast! The hear a crinkly popping noise when they listen to his lungs so we get to go get a chest X-ray. They see two small spots near his heart & on his neck. So now we get an EKG- something new for Jeremy. It doesn't look right so we are off to get a contrast Cat Scan.Well this may seem fast but it's not. By the time we got the Cat scan it was 9:00PM. We then had to wait for every doctor in the ER to come feel the "bubbles" in Jeremy's neck before they decide he needs to be admitted over night for observation. The cat scan showed bubbles around his heart of pockets of air. They believe it is from the coughing he did when he was waking up from the anesthesia after surgery. He also had one bubble of air in his throat that's apparently pretty rare for a child his age. Then you throw in that not many doctors have ever seen a patient with Sturge- Weber & it was full on INSANITY until 1:30 AM.

Jeremy & I finally got to the fourth floor & asleep around 1:30 Am only to wake up at 5:15AM. He was starving poor guy hadn't eaten much at all in almost twenty four hours.We ordered some breakfast & the madness ensued again. When I said one medical student could take a feel it turned into twenty-five doctors at one point in Jeremy's room. We had ENT, Surgery, & Pediatrics. Jeremy had finally had enough & was still waiting on his food.. He rolled over & refused to cooperate anymore. I suggested everyone wait until he ate & they all cleared out. His food arrived in the shape of Mickey Mouse pancakes, sausage,banana, & chocolate milk. He was so hungry I had to beg for a bite of his banana! Have I mentioned they had NO COFFEE anywhere until I asked for some. How nuts is that!!

He finally settled down & a good friend brought me starbucks & some snacks. She visited with us & watched Jeremy get another EKG. Another friend brought him up a new toy which provided some much needed entertainment at this point. We finally get to talk to all his doctors & agree on a care plan. We got released & are finally home. I am so sleep deprived my head hurts. Jeremy changed out of his Pj's & is watching a movie on the couch. We have two more appointments tomorrow & one new cardiology appointment in a week. All I want to do is curl up in my bed & sleep for a whole day straight. Luckily only the older boys will be home shortly from school. Jacob lucked out into a free afternoon of pizza & fun at Charlie Safari with his friend who is moving on Monday. Thank goodness for that, because I have no energy at all for all of his energy that I know would walk through the door. I am so grateful for all the friends who helped with the kids, bringing coffee, toys, & offering to cook dinner. We really are blessed to have a wonderful support system. Thank goodness- Paul was able to be here & get home to the boys last night. I hope it is a slow, boring , uneventful rest of the week- so please pray for that. I have no energy or brain cells left after the past three weeks to do one more emergency at this point. Here is a quick picture of Jeremy enjoying his Mickey pancakes this morning. I am off to take a nap.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Birthdays & Birthmarks

Happy Birthday to my baby boy Jacob. I can hardly believe nine years ago today you where born. It really does seem just like yesterday we where bringing you home from Madigan & you where the smallest of the four boys we had been blessed with. They delivered you a week early because I had been contracting for quite some time & they thought you would be as big as your brothers. Boy where we surprised when this little peanut came into the world at 11:15PM on June 13, 2002. I remember asking the doctors if something was wrong because you where only 7llbs 2 OZ. They laughed & said this is what a "normal' size right on time baby looks like- WOW!! You where so cute & looked just like your older brothers. Daddy could hardly wait to hold you & I could hardly wait to finally eat! I am so happy God decided we needed one more little boy to complete our family. To be Jeremy's protector,fishing buddy,& best friend. You amaze us everyday with your zealous love for life & anything challenging! You sure don't let anyone tell you "You can't do that your to small!". Watch out- because you prove them wrong everytime! We love you & we hope God sees fit to let us celebrate many more years of your life together.

 First picture with Daddy
June 13, 2002

First day at home in Lacey, WA

  Nine years later enjoying a cookout at the lake.
June 12, 2011

Thank you for being so understanding that we have to take Jeremy into Madigan today for a Laser surgery & eye exam under anesthesia. As you said " mom we already had my party so it's ok as long as you still cook my  chicken for dinner." It made me realize what a wonder,kind, caring little boy you are turning into.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Bowling Birthday

Today we got up super excited to head to the bowling alley on post for Jacob's birthday party. His actual birthday isn't until Monday but we celebrated a few days early . Jacob picked bowling on post because his dad is working weekends at the moment to get ready for the deployment. We figured maybe Paul would be able to come over during his lunch time for a quick birthday celebration. Jacob loves soccer so he requested a soccer ball be on top of his cake. I had never done a soccer ball at all so I was nervous. we agreed if it looked weird we could turn it into a bowling ball. Luckily it turned out pretty good. The writing is awful because I haven't done much script on cakes.But it still tasted delicious! 

We enjoyed a fun afternoon of bowling, pizza & cake with friends. Jacob said he had a great time! Then we where invited over to sit out in the sun & let the kids play while the adults visited with a good friends family. We headed straight over after the party where the kids played hide & seek the extreme version for almost two hours! The adults helped pick out the hiding spots & enjoyed lounging in the sun while catching up. It was exactly the relaxing afternoon I have needed. I feel so stress free for the first time in weeks. I was also so happy to get to catchup with my two friends who I feel like I never have time to see anymore.They are moving to a new post this summer & I'll be so sad to see them go. I think we may try to visit them over Spring Break as they will just  be in California. We will have to wait to see what we are into when it rolls around.

I hope everyone else is enjoying their Saturday & has a great rest of the weekend. Tomorrow we are excited to celebrate a good friends graduation from High School, so I hope the nice weather sticks around.

Happy 9th Birthday Jacob

So happy dad could show up for a little while

                                         My baby is getting so big

Friday, June 10, 2011

WOW- it's a Calgon day!

I wasn't going to post today but WHAT A DAY!! Got up at 5:15AM poured my coffee & the crazy ensued from there. I thought we where right on time with five minutes to spare for Jeremy's pre-op , nope I had it written down as 9:30 they had it in the computer as 9:05,uggg. Luckily they know us & asked if we could wait a few minutes they could squeeze us in, so we did. We had already ran by the Madigan pharmacy to grab a number as they are so slow in there I knew we would be lucky if they where anywhere near our number when we where done at pre-op. I was right as usual- we got down to the pharmacy thirty-five minutes after we had taken a number & still waited for fifty five more minutes to get called. Thank goodness they had a Disney movie on & Jeremy was cooperating. We get up to the counter & are told our neurologist has not put in his prescription??? WHAT say again, she never forgets??? They tell me I need to go back to the neurology clinic to get her to put the prescription in the computer & come back, UGGGG!! was NOT what I was saying in my head after already waiting almost an hour!

Jeremy goes along very nicely thank goodness back to neurology. There we are told our doctor has gone for the day & the only other doctor who can write the prescription is in a conference . I very nicely tell the gentlemen I have another appointment with anesthesia at 1PM, please have the prescription in the computer somehow by 3PM so I can get my son's medicine. I think he could see in my eyes that it was taking everything I had at that point not to jump over the counter & throttle him!! He took my cell number & said he would call as soon as he could with an answer. At that point it was only 11AM! Remember I had been up since 5:15AM, I was DONE!!! But I couldn't go yet. So I take Jeremy to get pizza & a root-beer as a bribe to remain calm as we head to the surgical services clinic. We are told there is a wait of two hours if we want to go run errands it would be a good idea- SERIOUSLY losing it at this point!I very quickly grab Jeremy's hand & head to the PX. Enough of this hospital at this point.

I let him look at toys & we pick out birthday party plates for Jacob's party tomorrow. We just try to relax for about forty-five minutes then head back to the car & Madigan. Luckily we get there & I get a call saying his prescription is in the computer and they gave us a fast pass for the pharmacy-hallelujah! We wait with a very strange man talking about Dr. Seuss for another hour before a nurse who recognizes us pushes Jeremy through the process. I think God knew I was done & needed a break.  Six long hours later Jeremy & I headed home.We have to go back on Monday for his laser surgery & eye exam under anesthesia . I am going to pray like crazy it goes smoothly. Not sure I can handle anymore stress at this point in my life. I am not complaining about our medical because I am so grateful to receive all the care we do for our family & Jeremy especially. But sometimes I do need to vent about it- so thank you for letting me.

Now to get ready to bake a birthday cake, pizza, movies & maybe pour a glass of wine to relax for the evening. Tomorrow is a Bowling Birthday party for Jacob & I want to enjoy the day.If I had any Calgon I would love a bubble bath as well, but I'll settle for a hot bath later instead.

** Edit**After this post while looking through the mail I found a postcard from Jacob's school. He has been chosen student of the month for June! He got picked for showing exceptional kindness to another student with out anyone asking him to help out. So all the stress floated away for a moment as I celebrated his accomplishment. It's been a rough couple of years in school for him behavior wise- so this is a HUGE deal!! Such a proud mom.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Memory Lane

You get a double post from me today & I know you are so excited!! I was going to wait to post tomorrow and remembered Jeremy has Pre-Op appointments spread out all day. Madigan can never do anything in a quick timely manner, but I am not complaining because they take great care of my little man! Any now back to the double posting today. 
Last night my youngest was all into the ARMY dress up thing to look like his dad. They had Boot Camp Field Day at his school & he came home with camo sun glasses & dog tags. My soldier has a huge green duffel bag full of his new Army gear laying in our living room floor. It has been there for about two weeks, not that I am counting  ;0)  Jacob decided to show us how big he is getting since he is four days from turning 9 years old (not sure how that happened so fast). He sat on the floor & scooted into the arm straps & hoisted himself up off the floor. He had a huge grin across his face as did Paul & I. I was instantly reminded of when my older two boys always use to play in Paul's gear before his first deployment to Iraq in 2003. I jumped up grabbed the camera & snapped away so I could have them in my old age.

He looks so much like my husband's pictures from that age.

Proving he was finally bigger then dad's duffel

Well this afternoon I was feeling nostalgic & was looking through old scrapbooks for the pictures of Hunter & Matthew dressed up. I laughed at the pictures & marveled at how fast time seems to have gone. They are so big now & looked so small in those photographs. Most of the pictures where glued down so I scrambled to my computer in hopes I had at least one saved. The PC in our bedroom is old but not in use when Paul deployed in 2003. I was so happy to see it did however have the Homecoming pictures in 2004 that I thought I'd lost. It also had a couple pictures of Matthew & Jeremy playing Army dress-up. The only one of the boys who never played Army was Hunter my oldest. Really no surprise there, but I thought for sure we had at least one picture, nope nothing!

Here is Jeremy all dressed up

 Here is Matthew at his Army Birthday party. Yes we know the rank is upside down in both pictures. But we think it adds to the cuteness of the photograph. It is a super long story on why it is upside down that I can't BLOG it all out- so just go with it- we did.

Anyway this was my stroll down memory lane today. I enjoy pulling old pictures out & looking at how far Paul ,the boys, & I have come. It's hard to believe we have been doing this Army thing for 17 years together. I look forward to whatever Army adventures lie ahead.......I think. Maybe I shouldn't type that out, they may do something crazy with us!

Tune Time

This week I really didn't have a song in mind until I was driving down the road into town yesterday morning. Good Ole Elton John came on & I found myself singing along with him to " I guess that's why they call it the Blues". The words seem to fit my mood for the week with all the stress of getting ready for my man to leave. As well as I could totally hear my husband saying parts of the song to me.

Just stare into space
Picture my face in your hands
Live for each second
Without hesitation
And never forget I'm your man

Without me girl
Cry in the night if it helps
But more than ever I simply love you
More than I love life itself

Yes those are the words that made tears form in my eyes yet again yesterday. So I decided to pick Sir Elton John for today's Tune to link up with Amber from Goodnight Moon. Now you go link up as well & enjoy some fabulous music picks by other lovely Bloggers. It's a great way to start your Thursday. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Happy, Sad , & Everything in Between

So as soon as my feet hit the floor this morning I have become an emotional mess-literally. I read all the post's online about the Delta Airlines travesty. Seriously can't believe they don't give their agents lead-way to allow our soldier's the right to carry on as many bags as they need when they are in uniform?? Full on disgust with them filled me as I prepared to get the kids & my husband up and moving for the day.

Then my older boys both jumped up off the couch as my husband was telling them goodbye to head into work. Something he does all the time if they are awake. Well today both of those huge teenagers took turns giving their dad huge bear hugs & telling him they loved him. That they hoped he had a good day at work. A smile spread across my face as I watched holding my coffee cup as well as tears formed in my eyes. I so wish I had grabbed my camera off the counter & snapped a picture for them all to have later. But I was in shock & emotional. They always hug their dad at night before bed- but random bear hugs are rare these days. It just goes to show how much the past two weeks & the passing of Cliff has affected my whole family. We are telling eachother we love eachother a lot more & trying not to argue with one other . I know it may be short lived but I pray it isn't. I hope these last few weeks has taught  my boys how precious life is & how it can all change in an instant.

Then I go to drop my youngest off at school & notice the mailman has already come for the day. I stop on the way back by to pick up our mail for the day. I see a card in the mail addressed to our whole family. The return label is from close friends of our family. I open it when I get in the door & immediately have tears again. They know Paul is deploying again soon as well as of our friend's passing. They thanked our whole family for Paul's service & expressed their condolences on Cliff's passing. Such an unexpected card that was so thoughtful . I can not express how much their small act of kindness has touched me & I am sure Paul as well.

So to say I feel like I have a mood disorder today is putting it lightly. I feel bad for the poor Vet as I head in with Panzer for his check-up. Who knows what they may say that might cause me to tear up. I have always joked around about needing drugs for my mood swings during deployment times- but it may not be such a bad idea today.Hopefully I can get past all these sudden bursts of emotions so my poor husband doesn't want to run screaming from our home onto the plane -LOL Thankfully he loves me & I know he'll just put up with it & hug me through it.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Just Don't Speak Please

This post may offend some & I am not even a little bit sorry- so here we go. You may mean well when you are talking to me &  my kids about Paul's up coming deployment by saying " This deployment isn't so bad compared to the last. No worries, he will be on a huge secure FOB. (Forward Operating Base).".

At this particular point in my pre-deployment life I neither want to hear or believe it! We just laid to rest a close friend who was also suppose to be in a "safe zone". So just DON'T SPEAK if that is the only thing you can think of to say to us. Just hug us & walk away, I would rather have a hug  then hear those words one more time from anyone.

Unless it is you going through a deployment or have been through a deployment you really have no idea the worry that comes along with the deployment.Your mind plays tricks on you & it's hard to turn the worry off. You can't even begin to compare a two day business trip or a week long training period with a whole year of your loved one in a War zone. So please don't try. I will smile most days & just walk away with out saying a word. But on any given day I could possibly lose it & snap - saying words I really don't want to say to you. If you want to help, give us all a hug & be honest tell us you have no idea how hard it is going to be. Be sincere when you offer to help us & check in on us while Paul is gone. I can always tell the people who mean it when they say it & the folks who are just saying it to be nice but hope we never call.

I love your support & could have never made it through the past ten years with out all the love.But you must understand to the best of your ability - Paul is going into a War zone, he will wear a flak vest, he will carry a gun 24/7, I will not think he is safe until he is back home in my arms where he belongs- period end of story!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

The Sun Shined Down

A lot of you may  be a bit tired of my posts lately as they are often sad & emotional. But those of you who are military & live this lifestyle know it goes with the territory. When a unexpected death of a friend hits close to home it has your emotions so raw that it often times consumes your daily thoughts. As you grieve the loss of the friend, watch the pain play out in that friends family, & realize your soldier is deploying as well soon. It is sometimes just to much to take in and process. I deal with it all best by jumping in with both feet & helping where I can. My tears fall in the early morning hours as I type this BLOG or read the newspaper articles posted by friends & family members of our friends tributes.

If you read yesterday's post you know we where able to attend the Memorial service for our friend Cliff. We are lucky enough to have some great friends who volunteered to watch three of our boys & our oldest son went with us to Spokane. I have traveled to Spokane, WA many times in the past but never with just Paul & one child. It was a long uneventful van ride over the pass. We laughed at a few silly jokes & had some conversations. But for the most part we where all sad & dreading what was to come. Not dreading because we didn't want to be there , but because I think none of us had really stopped yet to say our Goodbyes to Cliff. Hunter is a close friend to Cliff & Sam's son Dale. So he asked to go to support Dale & I was so proud of him. The night before the service they stayed up late in the hotel lobby playing Trival pursuit & watching movies in the room. They laughed & joked around in a teenage boy language that only they could understand. My husband & I often times shake our heads at their conversations & wonder "what in the world are they thinking?". But it calmed both their nerves & that was the point of Hunter being there. To help a buddy out as he has seen his dad do so many times through out the years. I was a very proud mom considering he woke up with a bad stomach ache on Saturday morning. He ended up vomiting a couple times before we left for the Memorial Service. But he put on a smile & continued to chat away with Dale.

We woke up to a beautiful blue sky & sunshine on Saturday. It was so gorgeous it almost seemed strange that we where all so somber & not excited to enjoy the much needed sunshine. As we waited outside for the Beattie family to come down to head to the funeral home,Paul & I enjoyed the cool breeze on the hotel patio. I snapped a quick picture of Hunter & his dad as I am beyond sentimental at this point. I have the worse case scenarios of Paul's upcoming deployment on repeat in my brain.I wanted a picture of the two of my handsome men together one more time before our soldier leaves.So I took a quick picture with my cell phone, not the best quality but I still love it!

The whole group was finally dressed & ready to head out for the services. We followed the family to the funeral home & then we headed to the church where the actual ceremony would be held. We where just in time to get behind the Patriot Guard Riders
who where going to set up in front of the church to honor the family. The sound of all those Harley's & other motorcycles was amazing! There had to be at least thirty to forty bikes with riders on them all there to honor Cliff & his family.  We where so happy to see them & I was able to snap a few pictures of them & a short video.

The pictures really don't do justice to the scene of the beautiful American flag waving in the breeze under the sunshine. It was so overwhelming to all of us there military & civilian alike. I noticed that even the golfers who where across the street playing a few holes stopped to take their hats off place their hands over their hearts as the family arrived.We all gathered inside the church for a beautiful & touching service that was filled with laughter along with tears. The stories told often made me laugh out loud as my husband & I nodded our heads that yes that was really something Cliff did or would do. It was nice to let the tears finally flow & say goodbye. As we went outside to finish the service with his family in the sunshine poor Hunter my oldest was feeling very sick.He almost passed out but thankfully quickly made his way back into the church to get a cool drink of water & sit down.As soon as he could he came right back outside to Dale & got him smiling again. We hugged our friends & got ready to return home as Paul had to be back for work.

The trip home was quiet as the guys fell asleep on me as I drove along. I enjoyed the radio & just drove. We came to a scenic over look that I have passed many times & I pulled in so we could stretch our legs a bit. Another couple who was there snapped a quick picture of Paul & I together. It looks a little funny but I had already changed into my comfy clothes for the five hour drive home. Paul had chose to just stay in his clothes he wore to the service. 

I love the picture even if it looks a little strange. Paul is smiling & I am relaxed yet exhausted all at the same time. We stayed about ten minutes then hit the road again. Once we got to our neighborhood & collected the other three children from our friends we sat down to just relax. I wasn't sure if I sat still to long I'd be able to get up so I managed to find things to do until about 9PM then I crashed hard in the bed. I am not even sure what time Paul came to bed, I just rolled over at some point & he was there. Normally we would be up & getting ready for church this Sunday. But my eyes are still exhausted from the tears & the drive. I will probably need a nap at some point today. So we are just taking the day to relax & enjoy the sunshine that is still hanging around.Paul may have to work today but we are keeping our fingers crossed that he doesn't. We would love to take the boys down to the lake to fish & swim later today. I ask that you all continue to keep the Beattie family & the Mora family in prayer as they continue to grieve over their loss. I am praying that I have a much calmer week as we are heading into the final two weeks of school for the kids. We are all so ready for summer, but dreading it because Paul will be gone. As I've said in the past, time is like a double edged sword for military families. Either it is moving to fast toward another deployment or to slow as we wait on our loved one to return home. 

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Paying our Respects

By the time this Blog posts we should be in Spokane,WA to pay our Respects to Fallen Hero SFC Clifford Beattie. He was a great father ,son,& friend. He loved to make you laugh & tried everything in his power to make it happen often. I put together a short video tribute so his children can watch it anytime they want to remember his big personality & smile. We will miss you Cliff but we know you are watching over us now & we will see you again one day my friend.


"Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." John 15:13 

Welcome Home Cliff:arrival at Spokane, WA 

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Thursday's Tune Time

This week has been filled to the rim with appointments & rushing around. We have so much going on trying to wrap up school for the kids,vet appointments, & getting ready to head to Spokane, WA for Cliff's Memorial Service. I fill like I barely shut my eyes at night & it's time to wake up to get moving again. Yesterday as I was driving home from the Vet with our dog Heidi a song by Norah Jones came on the radio. I use to listen to her quite a lot so I cranked it up! Her raspy voice just seemed to calm my nerves & help me relax for a few moments. So today I am choosing for my Thursday song link up with Amber from Goodnight Moon Norah. She has a lot to choose from but I went with Come Away with Me.

 I wish I could Come Away with my man to that mountain top she sings of so we could escape. To many commitments piling up & less time for each-other is what our days seems like. I knew it would happen right after the weekend with him prepping at work to leave. But I had no idea how much would get dumped into my lap all at once. So Norah helped relax me this week & I will dig her cd out to put in the van for the long drive to Spokane. My husband loves her voice as well, so maybe we can enjoy the car ride with some peaceful music playing in the background.