26 December 2010

Notes from the Road

Happy Holidays!

As the year comes to an end, looking back our family endured some things that we would have rather not. BUT, we still feel very blessed for all the good and wonderful things. We are looking forward to a new start in the new year!

We have been busy in the last few weeks and  please excuse my absence, yes I can blog from my Droid, but like I said we've been busy! Whew!

Here's a few notes from the road, so far...

We officially left Missouri the first week of December. We spent the 3 following weeks in Illinois with family. A huge gigantic thank you to Grandma & Grandpa DeCap for lodging, and all that comes with putting us up! Lilly (our dog-ughter) traveled for the first time and did amazingly well. Going into the trip I decided I was not going to try to enforce Aiden's schedule, rather we've just been going with the flow. This cross country move would prove to be trying, yet well worth it all for our adventurous little family!

Not too long after making our way to IL, the snow began to fall. (And fall, and fall, and fall...) Being out in the country made for a beautiful setting and start to the holiday season. The first weekend we were home we gathered with family and the sisters and I had a Christmas cookie baking day. Luckily, the guys were all on hand to assist with quality control! It was so nice to see Aiden playing with his cousins now that he's old enough to keep up with them all. There are many times that we truly miss the chaos that being blessed with a large family brings!

A few days later, after another snowfall, Aiden bundled up and spent some time sledding with his cousins. His first sledding experience was a success and his cousins were such great helpers! A pizza and Lego night followed unexpectedly and fun was had by all.  That weekend we made it to one of our nephews basketball games and Aiden spent some time at Grandma Na's house while the hubby and I were able to have a nice quiet adult conversation type lunch date and get some Christmas shopping done.

That weekend was also our Honkey (or Adam's sister)'s Birthday! (Sorry Sis, I didn't get you a special blog post made...I think you understand why!) Unfortunately the weather kept us from spending time with her on that day, but we were able to attend the Geneseo Christmas Walk with other family. We bundled up and made our way through part of the old victorian town and window shopped, checked out the museum, popped in and out of stores, took advantage of a few picture ops and ended the night with dinner, drinks and lots of laughs by the fireplace at a local restaurant. The next evening Aiden spent some time with his God Father and with the McCarty's having the always delicious chicken gumbo! It's something we've began looking forward to for the last few years.

Later that next week, we visited the village fire station. The hubby was a Hillsdale fire fighter prior to joining the Army and his brother has been for many years as well. Aiden really enjoyed exploring the trucks with Uncle Tony and even tried on his gear. It also snowed again that week and one morning while Papa was plowing out the lane with the tractor Aiden got to help. We got all bundled up and stomped and tromped around in the snow. Later that night we had dinner and movie night with the Trickey family. It was a perfect snowy night to have spaghetti and hang out on the couch with all the boys sharing a blanket watching a movie. Another busy weekend would soon be upon us, it would also be the last weekend at home with everyone. Friday night, we enjoyed one of our oldest nephew's Christmas concert at his school. He looked so handsome and sang very well. Saturday morning we would be up bright and early for Christmas at Nana and Kevin's house. We spent the day enjoying tacos and treats and like always, Nana had lots of presents for her little ones. Aiden received a very special Build-a-Bear that has a voice box in its had that when pressed he hears a special message from his Nana. Later that night, my hubby full filled his promise to his sister that if he was able to shoot a deer he would so she could stock her freezer. Together, with the help of his brother, he shot a doe and hug her in the morton building to be processed. With moving across the country and all, we were unfortunately unable to keep any of the meat for our selves! Sunday evening we also spent with family at Papa and Gigi's house for Christmas. It was nice to see cousins and aunts and uncles we don't see often enough and also for Aiden to get to hang out with his God Mother. We are so appreciative of everyone who makes the time to get together with us while we are "home."

We are also very appreciative of all the dinner invites we received! We received so many that we almost ran out of nights to eat with everyone who offered! Through this, Aiden was able to spend some time with his great-uncle Bunkie, great-grandma and grandpa Young, all of his grandparents, his friends Blake and Kai, his pseudo grandma Sherry, great-grandma and grandpa DeCap, all of cousins and aunts and uncles, as well as Michelle and Matt DeCap. I feel like I must have forgotten someone, but Thanks again to everyone! I was just as hard as it always is to have to leave but we needed to keep moving forward on this new adventure and what felt like all too soon, it was time to go.

We were looking forward very much to where we would be going though, our next stop would be to Denver, Colorado for a visit with some of our closest "Army family"the Marcelli's! More fun on our time here in Denver to follow...

Until Then...
Em & The Boys

28 November 2010

Birthday Wishes

Although the day is coming to an end, we have not gone without thinking of our sweet niece today on her birthday! Luckily, we were able to chat with her on the phone today and let her know that we hoped her day was extra special.
Happy Birthday Claire-bear!
We love you, miss you and will see you soon!!
Lots of Love from Uncle Adam, Aunt Em and Aiden!

12 November 2010

Late, but not forgotten

Please forgive me as I’m a day late in honoring Veteran’s Day, but it was not forgotten. The afternoon was spent with my husband, a veteran, and 5 others at our house for a Veteran’s Day, pre-Thanksgiving, please come help us eat our food up before we PCS dinner! It was nice to have some of the people who have filled our home with joy while we’ve lived here come one last time...and of course aid in not having to throw away food!
And I can’t go without beaming with pride on a day like Veteran’s Day, so yesterday I found a few pictures of the hubs in uniform. He’s almost half way to retirement, he’s re-enlisted a number of times, he’s been deployed twice, he’s about to be stationed overseas for the second time, and he’s working hard to become an officer. We are so grateful for the sacrifices he has made and continues to make for us to live this life. We also remember those who have served,  are now serving with him, and those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice for our country. God Bless them all!
{deployed - OIF}

{deployed - OEF}

{Manchu Ball '08} 

 {most recent re-enlistment '09}

And I'll leave you with this video of a song that kept playing in my head yesterday...
...And don't worry...I've not forgotten about posting pictures of halloween festivities...

04 November 2010

Oh, Rosie

Today, our little Rosie is recovering from the emergency surgery she endured yesterday. Oh, Rosie we sure miss you around here. We hope you’re getting some rest with the blanket we dropped off for you last night. Lilly has looked all over the house for you and Aiden has been talking about seeing you resting last night. Get better soon so you can come back home for awhile. We love you Rosie-Roo.
Our little “speed-bump”
After returning home from visiting Rosie at the vet last night:
Aiden: “Ro-iese, Ro-iese” Hollering in the yard and around the house for his dog.
Me: “Honey, she’s not here. She’s resting with the doctor, remember?”
Aiden: “Roiese, Blank. toes.”
Me: “Yes, we took the blanket to Rosie and covered her toes didn’t we.”
Aiden: Nods. “Roiese, rest.”
I love that little guy. And I love that he loves his dogs so very much!


31 October 2010

Happy Halloween

...From our haunted house to yours!



We’re looking forward to having some spooky good fun and sweet treats tonight! Here’s some fun from Aiden’s halloween’s past...It’s hard to believe this will be his 3rd!


Hope your night is spook-tacular!
{em & the boys}

28 October 2010

Shutterfly Shout Out

How does 50 free holiday cards from Shutterfly Sound? I know, really great right!?!  Today I came across this offer! And you too can enter your blog for the chance to win 50 free holiday cards. It’s easy, I promise, just go here.
Last year I ordered all our Christmas cards and return labels for the envelopes from the Shutterfly website and I was thrilled at how nice they turned out.  I plan on ordering our holiday cards the same way again this year. So imagine how great it would be to win 50 of those cards for free!  Now, the only problem is choosing which ones I want to use!
Im a fan of the flat stationary cards, here’s are a few of my favorites...

And...Since we’re going to have a new address soon I might need to make a few of these...

There’s lots of great products and ideas on the Shutterfly website...Check it out!

27 October 2010

Birthday Wishes

Today is cousin Rachel, our dear niece’s, 5th Birthday!!
Rach, We hope your day is extra special and oh so sweet just like you! We miss you lots and wish we could celebrate with you today. 
Big Hugs Red x.x.x. Aiden, uncle Adam & Aunt Em

19 October 2010

Fall Fun

We were SO ready to welcome Fall here! The hubs was anxious to get out in the woods and start bow hunting season and I was ready for warm sunny days and cool cozy nights with the windows open. As the season changes once again I’m thankful for more outside time with my guys and taking in the fresh air. I’m thankful that we can see the beautiful leaves change colors, that we can feel the cool crisp air on our skin, that we can hear the leaves crunch and the acorns fall, that we can smell the pumpkin bread baking in the oven, and that we can taste the seeds we’ve dried and baked after carving a pumpkin as a family. It is such a blessing that we are all in good health as we are in the season of thanks giving.
For us, it just wouldn’t be fall without a trip to the pumpkin patch. We were really pleased with the pumpkin patch and hay ride we went to last year and looked forward to going back again this year, only to find that the were not selling pumpkins or making any  activities available this year. Luckily, we stumbled across some info about the Rutledge-Wilson Farm Community Park in Springfield and spent a day exploring Harvest Fest.

It was a beautiful day spent with my beautiful little family at this beautiful time of year! Happy Fall!


08 October 2010

Being A Part

I started blogging so that I could share pictures and happenings with my husband during deployment and our family “back home” but surprisingly not too many read it. And that’s fine, I just wish they would remember its there when they feel like I haven’t shared something. It can be difficult sometimes to be apart. We have been blessed with this awesome life that will take us to new places and on new adventures on Uncle Sam’s dime. As we prepare to PCS (or move) again I’m reminded that we will be starting over again. Making new friends, finding our way around, trusting in a new babysitter and all of the other things that come with picking up and moving to an unknown place. But recently I’ve also been reminded that sometimes its not so scary when you’re a part. And by that, I mean a part of something....to me, something special. As much as our families and friends support us, there is still nothing like the support of someone going through the same thing and completely understanding the lifestyle. (Linds, I miss you!) A while back I came across a Military Spouse Blogging Community and started looking around but didn’t think I really fit in because my blog isn’t about my husband being deployed and I don’t have it all decked out in patriotic stuff. But I kept returning, finding that the more looking around I did the more I related with the blogs I was reading.  From time to time, the list of bloggers got a little longer and more of them looked just like documentation of a typical family, more like mine. I decided that I would look into being a part of the community and found that the requirements were easy-peasy! I did what was asked and then waited...I checked back every now and again to see if my name appeared on the list but it seemed that the list kept growing without me there and I began to wonder if maybe my blog wasn’t military-related enough. But today, to my surprise, I checked back and there I am! I smiled feeling that even though we are apart from the ones we love so much we are still a part of something really great. I now can only hope that another military wife will find my blog in the growing list and find something they can relate to. And I also hope that this will be a way to make new a new friend (or a few!) or be able to help out another Mil-Spouse.
It’s days like this that I remember that even though I may be apart from something I love, I can still be a part of something I’m beginning to love more and more with each year we live it. And I smile.
Thank You Household 6 Diva Ann Marie for the wonderful community that you’ve made possible!


06 October 2010

Fun in St Louis

Since we've been living in Missouri we've heard about how great The City Museum in St. Louis is. I researched it way back and WOW! its such an amazing place. However, there's a lot to do there that Aiden wasn't really old enough to enjoy yet. When we found out we would be moving we wanted to make going a priority and even though Aiden wouldn't be able to enjoy all there is to do, he's now old enough to have fun and make it worth going to see. And boy did we see so much! The City really is an amazing place.  We spent hours there and still didn't see everything. THe building used to house an old shoe company and is huge (600,000 sq.ft.)! The website describes it as an eclectic mixture of children's playground, funhouse, surrealistic pavilion, and architectural marvel made out of unique, found objects. (and I couldn't agree more!!) I'm really glad we were able to make it to The City while we lived so close to St Louis. When we headed out that morning we had to come back home after making it halfway because Aiden got sick in the car. (Big thanks to Grandma who was in the back with him trying to control the craziness!) But after returning home to clean everything up and let him rest we found he felt fine and I'm so glad we attempted to make the trip back because we had a fabulous time! We took so many pictures but I narrowed them down to some of the favorites...

By the time we finished up our day at the museum it was time for dinner, so we headed to Fitz's for some yummy old fashioned root beer and burgers. We also got to see the vintage bottling line in operation which happened to be making orange pop at the time.