In a world with a 4 year old, a 3 year old, a 16 month old, a 3 month old and two soldiers you never know what misadventures await. Life is always springing the unexpected and I want to share them with you. Welcome to my world.
This is my family on the day we blessed my daughter. So, its a fairly old picture seeing as my son is two and my daughter is one, but it makes me happy because my daughter was no longer in the hospital after being born six weeks premature and was pretty healthy aside from some lung issues. What more could a mother ask for in a premie? I love my family and I'd never trade them for another.
Something that tickles my fancy are my two amazing kids! I went through a lot to get both of them here, but I'd do it all again to have them. Aidan turned two in May and Aislynn's first birthday was on the 19th. I can't believe how fast time has gone by, because I still remember being pregnant like it was yesterday and even remember them being so tiny & little. But that's not the case because if I look and listen I will hear Aidan talking in almost complete sentences and Aislynn is starting to toddle around. I miss them cute and little, but I love them big too. So, that's what tickles my fancy today! My beautiful babies who I'd never trade for anything else in this world.
I know my creativity has been lacking these last couple of weeks and I've been doing the classic cookie cutter posts of day 4 and MilSpouse Friday Fill-In, for that I am sorry. My brain seems to be on a temporary brain fart. Maybe it was taking that family vacation that did it, and my brain has not returned. I had hoped to return home from vacation feel invigorated and more stress-free than when I had left, but I found that to be quite the contrary. (Unfortunately it would be just my luck, by the way). We found at the end of our fun vacation that although we had budgeted our trip, we had some how exceeded our budget, we were going to be short the funds to get home. Which was just great! We did figure out a solution, it just made money tight for the rest of the trip, a whole day and a half more, plus the remaining time frame til my DH gets paid this week. So, I think that adds more to the creativity lacking.
Onto more cheerful topics, perhaps of more creative means. I don't know how many of you have seen the new Alice in Wonderland starring Johnny Depp, but its a very well done movie in my opinion. Anyway, quite surprising to me my two year old has taken quite a liking to it and is constantly asking to watch "Aice" as he calls it. He can see movie posters, book covers, images of the Mad Hatter, Red Queen, White Queen, etc and tell you that its from "Aice." Its so cute how he says it and how excited he gets about the idea of the movie. I never really thought of it as a kid movie, not that it has any adult content, so no sex or nudity, but its not a cartoon. Any how he loves it. So, while my husband was away for AT we had to have watched it at least 20 or 30 times, enough times that I have caught enough of the word plays and I can quote quite a few lines.
I know its common for kids to latch on to movies, but usually movies like Toy Story or Aladdin. Apparently my son is just special. I wonder what kinds of movies you latched onto as a child? Or what about your kids? Have they driven you half mad with the constant watching of said movie? My two favorites growing up (as told by my parents) were Land Before Time (the original) and The Wizard of Oz and I watched the VHSs until they wore out.
For being as well-read as I am I don't have a favorite quote. I'm not sure if that makes me strange or just plain stupid, but I don't. I suppose I could pull some monologue from Shakespeare or something from a movie, but that would probably be cheating seeing as I really don't have one. The closest thing I have would be what I say to Chris. I tell him, "I love you without end and without measure. Come What May!" I love that and I suppose that counts as a quote. (I think)
I would have to say this is even harder than the favorite movie. I am such an avid reader and own literally thousands of books, we are in a constant demand of new bookcases. Our apartment is practically wall to wall shelving for all of our books. Now of course Christopher and I both own Nooks from Barnes & Noble, which simplifies book buying and space issues immensely. I would have to say as of the moment my favorite book is Spirit Bound by Richelle Mead is book 5 in the Vampire Academy series. I found it to be such an intense, edge of your seat kind of a read and the characters are actually the kind I can relate to (well, accept for the whole part vampire and vampire bit).
Spirit Bound Dimitri gave Rose the ultimate choice. But she chose wrong... After a long and heartbreaking journey to Dimitri's birthplace in Siberia, Rose Hathaway has finally returned to St. Vladimir's—and to her best friend, Lissa. It is nearly graduation, and the girls can't wait for their real lives beyond the Academy's iron gates to begin. But Rose's heart still aches for Dimitri, and she knows he's out there, somewhere. She failed to kill him when she had the chance. And now her worst fears are about to come true— Dimitri has tasted her blood, and now he is hunting her. Only this time, he won't rest until Rose joins him...forever.
I really love to read other fantasy series like Twilight, House of Night by PC Cast & Kristin Cast, Xanth by Piers Anthony. I also like the Amelia Peabody mysteries by Elizabeth Peters, books by Kathy Reichs creator of the TV series Bones and so many more. Like I said I love to read and I'm constantly finding new things to read. So many good books and never enough time to read them all.
It seems to be the trend for all of the Milspouse blogs to start participating in the Friday Fill-In and I thought why not. It gives me something new to write about and a chance for you all to learn more about me. I have been really surprised at how much I love writing my blogs and I quit spending so much time on Facebook & spend oodles of time blogging! Yeah me! Here come my answers, we'll see if you find me interesting at all.
1. How did you and your spouse/significant other meet?
We met our Sophomore year of high school sitting outside of a church house across the street from the Driver's Ed range. I definitely was NOT interested in him when I met him, but given time sparks did start to fly. 2. What is the best thing about being a MilSpouse?
The military benefits: on post housing, health insurance (when we had it), knowing other wives who know what I'm going through 3. What is the hardest thing about being a MilSpouse?
There is never a guarantee that my hubby will be with us for the important events and he misses out on so much. He missed our daughters birth, because he was at AT and this year he missed her taking her first steps because he was at AT again. You never know where he'll be and he could be gone at a moments notice it sometimes seems. You can't stop things from happening and time doesn't stand still. 4. What is your favorite dish?
This fabulous new recipe I got from Real Mom's Kitchen blog called Chicken Pillows and they are to die for. I don't know or even care if they are healthy for you, I think I could eat them every week! 5. If you could change one thing in this world, what would it be?
I'd want peace so that our soldiers didn't have to fight and be far away from us.
I enjoy watching a few TV shows here and there, but I find alot of what's on these days is crap. I would have to say my favorite TV show is Bones and I actually enjoy watching it with my hubby. We look forward to watching it together as often as we can, which is difficult with his work schedule. Usually its a lot of DVR and not current & up to date stuff. I love the cases, how they work to figure things out (goes well with what I'm studying in school, Anthropology) and I find that all the interactions between the characters really draw you in & carry you away, you can't help but care for them.
I also really enjoy Ghost Whisperer, Army Wives, Lost (which I'm seasons behind so I have no idea how it ends), and an oldie, but a goodie, Dr Quinn Medicine Woman.
So, I just had to brag and say in the words of my hubby, "Its one more day and a wake up, Hooah!" I'm so glad that his AT is nearly over and he can finally come home. I know its nothing compared to a deployment, but you sure could have fooled me this time around. Can I also mention how much I hate Housing Standards on Post? We got docked two points yesterday, because the backyard wasn't edged! So lame! So very lame! So I had to get edging 101 lessons at Midnight last night from my Father-in-law when I went over and borrowed their edger. I don't know what I'm doing and when I got that notice I promptly burst into tears. One more thing for me to stress about, added on top of packing for a family vacation by myself that lasts for almost a week. I hope the vacation is stress free cause I need it. How do you ladies make life more stress free while your soldiers are away? I can't seem to stay on top of everything. I feel far from the super mom everyone expects me to be including the Housing Office apparently!
This question is a rather tricky one, because I watch hundreds of movies and love about that many more. To pick one is like picking one thing that makes me special! Ok so maybe thats over stating it a little bit, but you get the idea that its a hard decision for me to pick one favorite.
Ok, because I can't pick one, I'm going to be really cool and pick one from each category. I know thats like cheating, but I really can't decide so here goes.
Ok, So I know this post is very video heavy, but I love being able to show my favorite movies and not just tell you my favorites. I love City of Angels for its incredible love story and it always (and I do mean always) makes me cry. Plus I love the instrumental music in it! Legend is just a good old fashioned fantasy movie that never gets old to me. It also has a very interesting plot line. Confessions of a Shopaholic, if you have not seen this one than it is an absolute must. The crazy insane spending of this girl and the lack of paying back on the credit cards is so scary that its funny. Its a good chic flick. Then there is Kate & Leopold, which is just one of those beautiful love stories about falling in love with someone you shouldn't but do anyway. I love it just because. I'm a hopeless romantic and I always will be! Last but not least you cannot make a list of movies without listing the Princess Bride, because it is just a timeless classic! This is a movie I have watched millions of times and know the lines by heart. If nothing else sounds good to watch, Christopher & I will put this one in because its a never fail movie. So, here is my 'Favorite Movie' list!
Picking my favorite song was actually pretty easy, which was really surprising seeing as I love music and have tons of songs that I like a lot. But my favorite song is actually Chris & my 'Song.' 'Come What May,' from the movie Moulin Rouge. It is the kind of song that if you are a hopeless romantic like me, you would just melt to have your sweetheart sing to you. This song has always been a source of comfort for me and through all of the tough times that Chris & I have had over the years its been like our motto. Its also the only song he has ever sung to me. It is the most beautiful song in the world and I want to share it with you.
I got this from this new blog I'm following written by a fellow Army Wife called Julie The Army Wife and she got it from The "Sometimes Single" Mom I'm going to use it and at least get something to write every day or try to anyway. You will also learn more about me and I hope that you will find it as interesting as I think even I will.
Day 01 - your favorite song
Day 02 - your favorite movie
Day 03 - your favorite television program
Day 04 - your favorite book
Day 05 - your favorite quote
Day 06 - whatever tickles your fancy
Day 07 - a photo that makes you happy
Day 08 - a photo that makes you angry/sad
Day 09 - a photo you took
Day 10 - a photo of you taken over ten years ago
Day 11 - a photo of you taken recently
Day 12 - whatever tickles your fancy
Day 13 - a fictional book
Day 14 - a non-fictional book
Day 15 - a fanfic
Day 16 - a song that makes you cry (or nearly)
Day 17 - an art piece (painting, drawing, sculpture, etc.)
Day 18 - whatever tickles your fancy
Day 19 - a talent of yours
Day 20 - a hobby of yours
Day 21 - a recipe
Day 22 - a website
Day 23 - a YouTube video
Day 24 - whatever tickles your fancy
Day 25 - your day, in great detail
Day 26 - your week, in great detail
Day 27 - this month, in great detail
Day 28 - this year, in great detail
Day 29 - hopes, dreams and plans for the next 365 days
Day 30 -- whatever tickles your fancy
The latest 'misadventure' at our house has been more or less centered around the fact that my hubby is gone to AT. Not an uncommon event in an Army household, but my two year old has been making that connection over the last few months that Daddy goes other places when he's not home, like work. Add in the fact that he is a Daddy's boy and this can prove to be a little tricky. Last year, it was only hard for me when my husband left for his two weeks, because Aidan didn't know any better. This year was an entirely different story.
An unusual treat for us was that we have actually got to take him to the airport, which normally we are forced to drop him off at the Unit's Drill Hall at the crack of dawn and hang out with him for hours before they load up on the charter bus. So, it was really nice that he was on Advance party and we had to get him to the airport. It meant more time with him and we had a more private goodbye, if you can call being at the airport private. Still, it was nice.
I wasn't sure though how our son was going to handle it and I was a little worried. He is known to throw temper tantrums when my husband leaves to go to another room when we're at other peoples' houses. I wasn't altogether sure what he was going to understand about daddy going away for two weeks. We'd been telling him for the week prior that Daddy was going to go work for the Army for awhile (since time is irrelevant to him at this point) and that we'd be taking him to the airport. Aidan didn't really say much and so I really couldn't say what he was making connections to & what he wasn't.
So, 'D-day' arrived and we got up early to make the couple hour drive to the big airport. I kept telling Aidan that we were taking Daddy to the airport to fly on the airplane. He was pretty quiet, so I still wasn't too sure about what was going in his little mind. Our daughter is too little still for it to matter at all to her. Makes it easier for me.
We got to the airport and my hubby got his boarding pass, we then moved to sit on a row of seats down by the escalators. Since they traveling in civies rather than uniforms, we couldn't get guest passes to get us through security we had to make our goodbyes outside. I was having a hard time, but I was doing well at keeping it together for everybody's sake. I knew that if I started to cry than my husband would cry and so would both of my kids. I couldn't deal with that, not in the middle of the airport. I'd done my fair share of crying in the airport and I wasn't planing on it that day.
We sat together, holding hands and talking. My husband still had some time before he needed to get going through security. My son didn't want my husband to let him go, so when my husband needed to use the bathroom, he had a little tag-a-long. I had the feeling that it was going to be difficult getting my son to let him go.
Finally it was time and we made our way up the escalators, toward security. We all got kisses and hugs. My sweet husband, handed me Aidan and that's when the hysterics started. My son did not want Daddy to go and it took everything I had to keep him in my arms, not running after Daddy. Hearing him cry, I was on the verge of tears. I couldn't stand to hear him so upset to see Daddy leaving and so instead of seeing Christopher off the rest of the way like I would normally have done, I turned around and walked out of the airport.
As we walked I told my son, that Daddy was going to work for the Army and that he was getting on an airplane. Aidan loves airplanes and even more than airplanes he loves Buzz Lightyear. I told him that Daddy was going to fly on the airplane. So, my sweet little boy piped up in his little voice and said, "Daddy, fly like Buzz?" He then promptly stuck out his arms and proceeded to fly like Buzz.
Every day I tell him that Daddy is at work for the Army and remind him that Daddy got on the airplane & flew. He will then say in his little voice, "Daddy work. Daddy work. Daddy fly. Daddy fly like Buzz." Its no longer a question of is Daddy flying like Buzz, its a stated fact that Daddy is flying like Buzz.
So here is the latest 'Misadventure' of this Army Momma.
I hope that with my posts, I haven't made anyone think that I am not proud of what I am. I am an Army Wife through and through. I would be lying if I said that I found it easy all the time and that I could handle any situation without batting an eye. We were told at the beginning of the year that they were preparing to send my husband's platoon overseas at some point this year, but its the stereotypical hurry up and wait. I cried when he told me. I'm scared to go through that again. I won't lie to you.
Yes, we've done the deployment thing and it was through the first year of our marriage. But this time it would be different we have kids now and that would leave me alone with no help. That scares me. It scares me that my kids are so little that they won't understand daddy not being here. And what if he doesn't come back. Its a possibility, not one I want to think about, but its there. How will my kids remember him?
Although I'm scared, terrified even, I wouldn't change that I married my husband and I wouldn't change that its made me an Army Wife. I'm not perfect, far from it. I'll readily admit it. I'm going to support my husband the best I can and try to be his strength, but he knows that its hard for me. To be alone. To be both mommy and daddy. To take on all of the bills, the care of our dogs, the house and anything & everything else that needs to be done.
I was told once it takes an extraordinary woman to be a Soldier's Wife and that I didn't have what it takes. I hope that after four years of marriage to my soldier that I have proven that person wrong. I am proud to be an Army Wife!
It always seems to be a Soldier and his family's lot to not be together when those big events happen, those milestones that mean so much to each & every parent. Christmas, baby's first tooth, birthdays, anniversaries, baby's first steps and so many others. We don't ever really get used to it, not really. We adapt to the situation as it comes, but it doesn't stop it from being painful and sad as it happens. We pull out the camera and take lots of photos & if we have video cameras those get pulled out, too. With the modern technology these days, we have all kinds of ways to share these events with our loved ones where ever they maybe, but its never the same.
While my husband was deployed, I was spoiled and I got to talk to him far more often than I had anticipated. Not to mention email, webcam conversations and good old-fashioned love letters. I loved being able to talk to him and I never complained with the frequency. I was lucky and I know not all deployments will be that nice. Then we have AT, where it seems his Unit has this fantastic knack for picking the most remote locations in the continental US to go and then its two weeks of occasional phone calls. No way to send letters, I mean its two weeks, right, I'll survive.
Sometimes, like this time, I feel like I won't. Last year, I tried to talk him out of going. I was 32 weeks pregnant when he left and I had one of those womens' intuition moments, I didn't think it was a good idea for him to leave me with our toddler and that far pregnant. Well, he was out in the middle of nowhere and I went into premature labor. I ended up having an emergency c-section and he wasn't there.
I honestly never thought that would be me, that would be us. You think about it in terms of other people. That it happens to other soldiers' wives, but then if you really think about the reality of it, it could be any of us. Because at any given time our spouses could be called away and we could be pregnant, sick, who knows what else could be going on in our lives. Who knows what events will take place while their gone and we have to 'soldier up' and deal with it. I hate that.
Would you believe that I served 3 years in the Reserves myself? I'm currently sitting in IRR, but that's beside the point. I know some of this from both sides and its rough both ways.
My daughter's first birthday is a week from tomorrow and today my she took her first steps. It was so amazing, I mean I've been expecting it for the last couple months and then it suddenly happens. I was thrilled, but the harsh reality is Christopher missed it. He was here last year when our son took his first steps on Father's Day, two days after our daughter was born. But this time he missed it.
When I told him on phone, he started to cry. This killed me. It was so heart wrenching. I think some of it was, we'd been arguing over the phone, which I know never goes well. Especially when you're hundreds of miles apart and can't easily fix things. So, emotions were already running high, luckily we were patching things up, but I think it hit him hard because he'd missed so much. At least he feels like he has. He's missed her birth and now her first steps. His civilian job requires screwy hours that allow little time with us and I think its all starting to be overwhelming. He feels he's missing out on his kids growing up.
Its sad that we have to roll with the punches so often and that we've all come to expect the unexpected. That we do what we must, when we must. Sometimes I feel like its unfair, but hey I guess that's life for you. I just really hated hearing the sadness in his voice, the tears. I hate that and I hate knowing that it probably won't be the last time he'll miss out on something because he's at AT or deployed.
This is our world. This is our life. Although I know we would all love for them to never miss a single moment, we also know that its a sacrifice we all make for love, for our country, for freedom. We may not always like it, we may not always understand completely the whys, but we'll do it. We'll find the strength, because they need to know we'll be ok. And we will. We will.
Here is a video of my daughter walking. (Video quality isn't great, its off of my cellphone, but I have to brag)
The Misadventures of An Army Momma With Two Under 2
Today was one of those days where nothing seems to go just right. You know the kind of day you almost want to shout at the sky, 'Why me?' A scene we often see play before us on upteen million movies and tv shows. Its the kind of day I catch myself wondering even if for just a brief moment why I signed up for this and where can I return to sender? Ok, so maybe that's stretching it a little, but it still was a day full of a cranky teething almost one year old and my two year old, well just being a terrible two year old. Today I was truly an Army wife. My hubby is has been at AT for the last week and you really start to fully appreciate the little things they do for you when they're not around.
I want laugh when I hear people talk about Soldiers' spouses like we are some kind of being that sits far above 'normal' people. I want to take them aside and say we're no different than anyone else. So we spend large amounts of time apart from those we love and as much as we support what they do & what they stand for, I know I would love nothing more than to have peace so they could be home with us. Its not like we want them gone. It still hurts us when they're not here and it still is really stressful when we have to take care of everything at home. But we all knew what we were getting ourselves into when we married them. We married them because we loved them and we still do.
Then there are the people, who that because we married soldiers we have to be tough all the time and I just don't agree with that. Yes, we all are brave and have strength beyond what we sometimes feel that we actually have. But place us in any situation and we'll find a way to survive, to push through. Yet, we are still human and we can't always be strong. We have limits, we have weaknesses and we know that. It can be a little aggravating that people assume that we can just suck it all up and never shed a tear, never show any emotion.
I'll admit while my husband has been gone this AT, it's really been a challenge and I find that I have no one to turn to. I know that we can survive this. Two weeks is nothing compared to a 15 month deployment after having been apart for six months worth of training before that. We made it through that, but just because we made it through that doesn't make it any easier each time they leave.
We recently moved onto our first military base, because he's Army Reserves its not like we get moved from one post to another. We actually moved here due to a change in his civilian job and now he does security for the Federal side here on Post. I don't really know anybody, its not how I pictured living on base would be. I thought everybody would be jumping all over introducing themselves to new move-ins, but I guess with so many coming & going that nobody bothers. So, this AT has been really lonely and my two kids are not much on conversation or at least grown-up conversation.
I'll survive. I always do, but I still think about what everybody who isn't apart of a Military Family expects of me and I wonder what they'd think about all the things that are really true about us. That we are more like them than they think, we're just more prepared for the unexpected than they are. Because we all know nothing is certain until its on paper and even then it still change.
I hope you will all continue to join me and my family's misadventures. I'm looking forward to making some new friends!
Perhaps its a corny way to start and then again maybe its not, nonetheless everything essentially has one and this is mine. Mine begins with finding love in the most unlikely of places; a strange, kinda geeky, well-read, soldier-want-a-be the end of my sophomore year of high school. Of course, it wasn't until two years later that I realized how I felt about him (and loads of high school drama!) and I still had to over come my ingrained fear & dislike of the Military since he was determined to join. Christopher did join the summer after we or rather I graduated from high school (he ended up getting his GED) and shipped off to Basic.
I joined in the Fall two years later (so apparently I overcame my dislike & I met a very convincing former recruiter) and while I was in training, my soldier volunteered to deploy to Iraq. I was upset, hurt and hundred other emotions when he told me on my Christmas Exodus and he was gone to Premob training before I was done with AIT. Although I have given simple, clear cut events of Christopher & my relationship, the four years leading up to this point were far from simple. We were like any couple we had our ups and downs. Sometimes more downs than ups it seemed, but we worked through it.
We actually shocked our parents when we told them we were getting married the following Saturday. He had gotten four days of leave between the end of Premob and heading over to the Big Sandbox. I think the shock stemmed from the fact that the last they had all known we hadn't been together anymore and now suddenly we were getting married. But over time I've come to realize that's kind of the life of a Soldier's wife. Things can be sudden, prone to change without much warning and sometimes more than a little nerve-wracking. So, we were married on April 15 (Tax Day as I am reminded every year) in a very simple ceremony, but we were married and that's what mattered.
He returned the following April and that's when being married really sank in. I got pregnant with our son, Aidan, that August and he was our May baby. I loved (and still do) being a Mom. Then totally by surprise (but not unwelcome at all) we found at the end of November that we were expecting again. Oh, boy! Or rather oh, girl! Then coming 6 weeks early, we (or rather, in a very atypical Military fashion, I) welcomed our daughter, Aislynn, to the world. Thus becoming An Army Momma with 2 Under 2.