Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Aye! I Stink at Blogging Anymore!

Sooo it has been a while. Again. My only excuse is that after the last blog entry (November) things got a little crazy! There were the holidays, where I decided to go to my Dad's for 2 weeks. Figured that would at least help ease the whole my husband is in Iraq and I am sad thing. It did. We came home and it was time to start homecoming preparation. There were barracks rooms to ready, posters to make, outfits to buy, plans to be made...yea. The husband coming home after a year was a HUGE deal. He did arrive in January.



Since he has been home we have done LOTS of traveling. We went to his hometown during leave. We celebrated our first anniversary together (although it was actually our 3rd). We went to Gatlinburg, where we had rented a cabin in the mountains. In February. For whatever reason, this year, snow was abundant in Tennessee. We drove across the mountain to Cherokee, NC to gamble a little. Came out and, of course, it had apparently snowed the entire time we were in the casino. Road to get back across the mountain was closed. We ended up having to drive the long way. Problem was A) there had been a rock slide so the interstate between TN and NC was closed and B) it was freaking snowing. 7 hours later (it only took 1 hour to get to the casino) we arrived back to the road where our cabin was. Only to realize that it had been snowing! and we could not make it up the stupid hill in the car. So we hiked the 1.5 mile trip up the mountain to our cabin. In the snow. Carrying our fancy anniversary dinner from Arby's. Good times. We returned back to Texas and found out that they were predicting SNOW! We booked a trip to Vegas, arranged for a sitter for the kids, and off we went the next morning.



We had never been to Vegas and had an absolute blast! Came home once again and real life started. He is back at work and we are back in a routine. We did manage a couple more local trips over weekends to San Antonio and to Dallas. In San Antonio we went to SeaWorld and Six Flags with some friends. We went to Dallas to see some other friends off on their new adventure in Germany. We have a beach trip planned this weekend, a camping trip the next, and a couple weeks later we go back to TN. Busy beginning of summer for us.

Now that I am caught up. Again. Perhaps I can stay that way!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

What's It Really Like?

Some people never have the opportunity to experience the things that a military wife does. Some of the things that a military wife experiences I wouldn't wish upon my worst of enemies, some of the things I pity those that don't get the opportunity. Let's talk about the worst things. Just because that's how I roll. Before I do, though, let me first explain that I realize that some of our soldiers have it much worse than those left behind. This should never be a game of who has it worse, but sometimes, just sometimes, a soldier has too much sand in his brain to realize what is going on back home. Let's begin.

A spouse that is left behind is forced to take on additional responsibilities, coupled with the added stress of worrying about her soldier, the fact that there is never a moment alone, and of course the fact that there is no boom boom in the boom boom room.

Although some may think it is a piece of cake to juggle all of these things, I invite you to take my position at any time. I give it one week. Max.

I would LOVE to watch you mow the grass without looking at where you are pushing the mower because you are watching a child whom at any moment will run into the street because you are busy and can't yell loud enough for them to hear over the motor. I would love to see how you handle using the restroom with the company of a child at all times. I would love to see you manage a shopping trip with children in tow and make it out of the store with all of the items that you intended and all children accounted for. I would love to see you be able to clean the house with children "helping" and with them constantly making yet another mess for you to clean. I would love to see you take the vehicle to get maintenance done, where you pay double what you should because you are taken advantage of, while your child runs around destroying the waiting area. I would love to see you be able to keep up with all important dates, all events, and any appointments on 3 hours of sleep a night. I would love to see you be the cheerleader that keeps the spirits of a soldier up on his darkest of days.

You see, I don't have someone that cooks me 3 meals a day. I have to keep children, whom know no better, alive. I don't have someone that does my laundry. I don't have someone sending me packages of my favorite snacks. I don't have the ability to watch what I want to on tv or play a game without interruption. I don't have the luxury of peeing or showering without the company of a child. I don't have the ability to run to the store to browse for a bit alone or even run in and grab an item quickly. I don't have the ability to spend time with other adults talking about adult things without constant interruption of a child. I am not only responsible for myself, but also for the children that are left behind, the house that is left behind, and attempting to maintain some sort of semblance of a relationship.

I do, however, see my children every day. I tuck them into bed every night. I am not (usually) concerned that any loud noise I hear is a bomb or gunshot of some sort. I am sleeping in the comfort and relative safety of my own bed. I do get to experience those first kisses over and over again. I get to fall in love with my soldier for who he is all over again. Our connection is deepened because all that is left is to talk. I get to anticipate his arrival and the thrill of seeing him for the first time in months. I get to relish in the honeymoon stage more than once.

The grass is always greener...

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Too Close for Comfort

The events that occurred today, Thursday, November 5, 2009 blew me away completely. I never would have expected to hear that a soldier walked into a building full of other soldiers, on an Army post, and opened fire in this manner. The facts are still forthcoming of course, but what I do know is that for a while today, memories of September 11th were brought to the forefront of my mind.


DQ happened to be out of school early today. After she arrived, I was preparing to walk out the door to go to the store and run a couple of other errands. My sister happened to call at that time. That phone call may have saved my life. Seriously. I very well could have been in that very area, at that very time. It has bothered me all afternoon. I believe, more today than days before even, everything happens for a reason.

The reports given throughout the afternoon were conflicting and confusing. I think at this point there are still many questions left unanswered. What I do know is that there are many soldiers that lost their lives at the hand of another soldier and even more injured. The reasons why really don't even matter. All that matters is that lives were lost and lives were forever changed. I am forever changed. The way I look at my surroundings has changed.

Please keep all of the families and soldiers in your thoughts and prayers. I will have more to say in the next few days I am sure.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Sisterly Love

As annoyed as I was at the time, I had to share this moment because it made me smile. This morning DQ was in my room getting talked to about being disrespectful. She seems to think it is ok to stomp and pout about being told no. She isn't 2. She's almost 9!!

So, I talked to her about the behavior and she was being punished, and by punished of course I mean I was beating her. (Don't call the cops, the child wasn't really being beaten, though you would think she were by the toddler's reaction!) The toddler comes in and stands there with this scowl on her face. She has her little hands balled into fists at her side and she proclaims, "That! Is! My! Sister!".

As much as they fight and bully each other, at 2 she's already sticking up for her big sister. It was adorable! Now, they have both left me alone in my room so that they can conspire on how to kill their mother today so I am enjoying some peace and quiet! Any bets on how much time will pass before they are killing each other today?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Journey

I am learning as I go. I am feeling my way, blindly, through this thing called life. There are so many hills and valleys. Sometimes, I feel as though I am losing things. At those moments, I feel the losses so strongly that it can shake my entire being. It shakes me to my core. Those are the valleys.

As I make my way up the hill, I can feel the struggle within myself. It becomes so very difficult to put one foot in front of the other and continue up the hill. Once I reach the top, I look back down to the valley and realize how much I have gained. In those moments, I am eternally grateful to have made it through that valley. No matter what the valley encompassed, once I am at the top of the next hill, I am able to clearly see that although it may have been difficult, I did make it through.

Sometimes I feel as though my particular journey entails many, many more valleys than it does hills, but I know as I look back through everything I have ever done, everything I have ever been through, there are in fact just as many hills. In fact, at the top of many of those hills, there is a plateau.

A plateau where it doesn’t ache to breathe, my breathing isn’t labored. I am not stumbling and my legs don’t ache. I meander easily through those plateaus.

Sometimes, on the other side of the hills or plateaus, the way down is steep. Sometimes it gently slopes. Sometimes it is so very steep that I tumble down head first and before I know it, I am once again in the throes of a valley. At times, the way down can be slow and torturous forcing me to watch my step and pay close attention. I know, logically, that after the valley is the climb up the hill and sometimes? Sometimes, I just want to wallow in that valley. Too discouraged, too worn out to bother the climb. Alas, I know I must continue.

Continue on until the journey is completed. I do not always take the time to reflect on the valley that I’ve just come through. I take little piece of each valley and I carry on.

This is a time where I stop and look back and realize that I never would have made it through those valleys, up those hills, across those plateaus without the ones that I hold dear. I am not always good about stopping to thank those people. Even knowing, as well as I do, that this journey can end at any time and for any reason. This journey can be an extremely long one or it can be one that ends entirely too soon. I am thankful. Thankful for those that have at times held out a hand to steady me when I stumbled, for those that have encouraged me through the valleys, for those that have pushed and pulled me up the side of the hills, for those that stood beside me at the top, for those that have walked next to me across the plateaus, for those that have cushioned my fall into the valleys. This is my thank you. My thank you for those that are close in proximity, those that are hundreds of miles away, those that are thousands of miles away and those that have already ended their journey and are patiently awaiting the finish to mine.

May I always have you there to accompany me across my journey.

These Kids Will Be the Death of Me

Especially the toddler. I always talk about her though. it's because she's my favorite. Kidding! I kid! It's simply because she is the one that is up my butt 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. I will start with DQ. She is doing very, very well in school. Her teacher says she has no problems with her and she is very helpful in the classroom. Which explains alot. You see, she uses up all her "goodness" at school. I get the leftovers. Which isn't much. She was extremely sweet to me on Thursday after my trip to the ER. Oh wait you don't really know about that...

SIDE NOTE: On Thursday, I was chatting with the husband through IM, I needed a potty break. I stood up and my ankle twisted and I heard a very loud pop and I fell to the floor. Excruciating pain and dirty words commenced. I started to feel like I was going to pass out (I do that when in extreme pain) and I tried my hardest to breath my way through it. The next thing I knew, I was face first on the floor with the toddler rubbing my back saying "It's okay, Mommy". The husband insisted that I go to the ER. I went. Wasted 4 hours of my life that I will never ever get back. I was tsk-tsked by the nurse because I drove myself and was there alone. I refrained from explaining to her that if the stupid Army hadn't sent my husband to play GI Joe in the middle of the desert I wouldn't be alone. Perhaps I will hire a caregiver next time? Perhaps the Army should provide me with a replacement husband while mine is away? Eh, I got sidetracked. My ankle is sprained. Life goes on. A life with two kids and one crippled adult.

So. Thursday evening, DQ was very helpful. Insisting that she help me get settled into bed before she went to bed. She got my foot all propped up and plugged in the laptop and my cell phone. The staples of an Army wife, or so I am told. Friday morning, she came in wondering what would I do without her there?! I explained that I would be just fine. I have to be careful about what I say because for all the hell that DQ puts me through, she is a worrier. (Gets it from her father!) She will worry herself sick. So off to school she went and I did indeed survive that day. She was helpful in the afternoon and tucked me into bed with an elevated foot again that evening. Then...well...it dwindled to just tucking me in and now? She says good night and heads off without a thought.

Is it normal for an almost 9 year old to fight constantly with a 2 year old? I mean...yes, the toddler is a BRAT. She has toddler issues of the "mine syndrome" and likes to annoy her sister in any way that she can, but DQ does the same things with her. It's like she figures turn about is fair play? I am losing my mind!

Yesterday, the toddler and I made a trip to hell the commissary for groceries. You see, the toddler has this idea that life is one big buffet. She eats constantly. She goes through 16 gogurts within a few days. She eats anything and everything in sight. We made the trip to the store and as I am putting away groceries she is digging through the bags looking for the goods. Seriously. Within an hour of being home, she had a capri sun (asked for a second), a lunchable, a gogurt and was bringing me Yogo bits. Honestly? It wasn't a meal time. It was snack time, but really? I've heard of teenage boys doing this, but a toddler? I fear that I will not be able to afford her grocery bill for long.

We have an extremely busy end of the week and weekend coming up. I decided to not spend so much time stuck in the house with the kids and...well...go big or go home, right? Tomorrow afternoon is some reading thing. Something about breaking a record and people reading the same book at the same time? Yeah. So there's that. Then Friday is the circus. Saturday, a Fall Festival. Sunday, a breather for me (other than the whole baking the husband banana nut bread in a jar). Monday, is a movie date (no school). Busy, busy! I may or may not survive this!

Do you have big plans for the weekend?

Monday, October 5, 2009

Pictures!!

I took a picture earlier this evening of something that I find highly disturbing and wanted to make fun of my life just that much more, so I wanted to share it with you all.

This is what I took pictures of:



In case anyone ever wondered if I lie to them about the crap I deal with from this toddler. You know what that is, right? It is apple peel. She helps herself to apples, takes a few bites, spits the skin from those few bites in the floor, and then drops the apple wherever her little heart desires. Bless her little heart! (cue straightjackets)

As I uploaded the apple peel pictures, I stumbled across these other pictures. After leave, I drug a friend out to the recreation area near post. We went camping. For one night. Me, her, my two kids and her two kids. Fun was had by all. So although I am certain she is going to kill me, I am posting pics for all to adore. Truth is, her killing me isn't so scary after 8 months of deployment!!!!
The two big kids, playing DS. They camp in style ya know!
The baby. She's so awesome!
The toddler stole the baby's bear. Imagine that.
The friend and the baby. Hey, I posted the after make-up pic so be happy :)
P.S. This post may or may not have been written under the influence of pills from my horrible sprained ankle. Yup. I managed to cripple myself while being the only adult in the house. I rock!!!