20 February 2011

Birthday Wishes

Today is this special lady’s birthday! A few years ago I found a great friend in an unexpected place at an unexpected time and I have been so blessed that she has unexpectedly stuck around!! Happy Birthday Linds, missing you more than usual today! Maybe in a "few" more years we'll be old ladies gossiping over coffee and racing each other through the nursing home causing trouble!
Friendship isn't about being inseparable, it's about being separated and nothing changes.  It's a promise made by the heart. Silent. Unwritten. Unbreakable by distance. Unchangeable by time.

From all of us today, We hope your day is special!

13 February 2011

This Week at Home

This week at home...
...it snowed some more.

...someone tried out preschool for the first time.

...someone also spent a couple days in bed with a yucky bug.
(that was probably brought home from preschool!)

...we added some Valentines cheer to the house!

...we were thought of.

...and we enjoyed our time together while also trying to take care of ourselves.
(and indulging in a few squares of dark chocolate!)


11 February 2011

Calm before the Storm

As I write, the house is quiet, but not too quiet.  It’s that just right kind of quiet, you know? It's Friday night and Aiden is already in his jammies, hanging out on the couch with his dad having a pb&j.  I’m in the other room and although the tv is on, all I can seem to hear coming from the living room is the sweet sound of a father and son.  A week has now gone by since the news. Last time I wrote, everything seemed to be falling into place just the way it should, everything was just right. The last week has brought many prayers, tears shed and extra hugs. Such is the life of a military wife as she prepares her family for deployment.  Last time around, it was just the hubs and I and we had months to prepare.  This time, it came short notice and unexpected...along with the fact that the littlest member of the house has no idea whats about to rock his world.  As if in the last two months haven’t brought enough change to our life, we must now endure this.  It's moments like this, on nights like this, that will soon be missed tremendously.  One of the most important things I learned though the last deployment was that trying to find something, anything, no matter how big or small, that is positive really helps to keep me going. It’s so easy to be angry and distant right before a separation but so much more important to truly enjoy the time you have with your loved one.  An unfortunate truth is that it could be the last. And I don’t just say that as an Army wife who sends her husband off to war. I also say it as a mother who gets in a vehicle everyday with her child and a daughter who no longer lives near her parents.  Our time on this earth is not a given, its a blessing. A blessing that can be gone just.like.that.  Hate is easy, love takes courage. Loving my husband and continuously striving to have a successful marriage  is by far one of the most courageous things I have ever attempted! Also at the top of that list is parenthood. I’m thinking that my new motto should be “You can’t scare me, I’m a toddler’s mom and a Soldier’s wife!” As funny as it might be, the truth is I do get scared. But maybe that’s what helps me to keep the faith.  A little at a time, when I seem need it the most my faith grows stronger. Some days will be better than others in the coming months and although there may be a storm in the forecast, today was a good day. A calm day. A blessed day. A happy day. And as the storm approaches, we will continue to take each day one at a time until the storm passes.

Happy moments, praise God.
Difficult moments, seek God.
Quiet moments, worship God.
Painful moments, trust God.
Every moment, Thank God.

02 February 2011

Birthday Wishes

Today we send a Big Happy Birthday to Collin, our very energetic, funny nephew! Unbelievably enough, he turned four today. 
Collin we miss you and hope you’re having a splendid “snowed in” kind of birthday! 
And while we’re sending out birthday wishes...I must add that even though I didn’t post due to traveling, unpacking and lack of internet we did not forget about a few other special people who celebrated their birthday recently too!
One of our other nephews, Carter just turned another year older! He is quite the creative  Lego Architect!  Happy Birthday Carterman! I hope you know we were thinking of you on your special day. Big Hugs!

Also, the hubby’s favorite brother celebrated his birthday...
So, Happy Birthday cool Uncle “Tonkey”!!
Last but not least, Aiden’s Gigi had a birthday as well.  There are so many birthdays and day-to-day things we miss out on having to live away. But to all of you, we send our love and big birthday hugs. And we think of you often, not just on your Birthdays.

Lots of love-
{Em & the boys}

Notes from Home

"The Last Frontier"
"North to the Future"
"Land of the Midnight Sun"
And yes, its "home."

It felt like such a long journey to get here, but now looking back it all seemed to go by so fast.  We didn't nearly have enough time with all our friends and family along the way. But, it's good so very good to have a place to call home and to be getting settled.  And just like that the hubby is back to work "for real", I start training for a new job next week, Aiden is excited to be starting "school" and this will all be our new normal!

The last time I wrote we were enjoying Christmas with the Marcelli's in Denver, Co. It was great to be back in Colorado after moving away from there a few years ago but what was even greater was to see Kris, Lindsey, Nora and Allie again after a few (long) months. Lilly was overjoyed to spend some time with her best doggie friends. One of my favorite things about this trip was enjoying a cup of coffee with great friends during the quiet mornings before Aiden got up. I can't even really tell you what all we talked about but that part doesn't even really matter! With all of the great family I've been blessed with already, I feel exceptionally lucky that God also feels I need these friends I consider family as well. Aiden even calls Lindsey and Kris "Aunt and Uncle." Well, he calls Kris "Uncle Kris-tmas" and loves them just the same as his other Aunts and Uncles.
Christmas Eve was spent shopping, making Christmas cookies and playing Wii. The days were going by so fast and I knew it wouldn't seem like we had nearly enough time spent here!

On Christmas morning, Aiden was excited to see that Santa had found him in Colorado. There wasn't a snowflake in sight and we were able to spend the morning comfortably in our sweats. We even headed out that day to Kris' parents house sans coats and needing sunglasses! Even without the snow, it was a beautiful Rocky Mountain Christmas. I must admit I miss living in Colorado far more that I ever thought I would.  Aiden took the role of passing out the presents and even assisted in opening most of them also! Since Santa knew that we would be traveling he only brought Aiden on gift this year and it was Jingle the Husky Pup and interactive storybook made by Hallmark.  He got another book from Mom & Dad and a CAT machine with a drill that he can take apart and reassemble from Kris and Linds.  As I said, later on that day we were welcomed into Kris' parents house for dinner and they even had a couple things under the tree for us.  Completely unexpected, but very thoughtful.

The day after Christmas we headed out to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science in search of King Tut. I need to add a HUGE shout out to the DMNS as we were all allowed to explore the museum for FREE! What a nice surprise that we all got full access for the day, for free with military ids. There aren't enough places that do this type of thing, and I'm not just saying that because it benefits me, but because it benefits so many other families as well. Later that night after heading home to check on the dogs and have some lunch we also went to the Denver Zoo for the Zoo Lights display where the zoo becomes a 38 acre illuminated safari complete with both real animals and 150 animated light sculptures.  It was so cold Aiden was crying because his snot was freezing to his face and his mom and dad (who will not be winning parents of the year) had left behind his mittens. But daddy came to the rescue and let Aiden wear his gloves and the zoo had numerous hot chocolate stands offering free refills once you had the cup!

Too soon it was time to get back on the road and keep making our way to the Pacific Northwest where we would catch the ferry to Alaska.  We had a couple stops to make along the way and were unsure what kind of wintery weather we would be getting ourselves into. Just as every time before, this time was no different when the dogs were separated. Lilly spent most of the rest of the trip depressed, missing her friends and confused about what was going on! One stop we made along the way was to visit my father who I'd not seen in 15 years.  He did not know we were coming but welcomed us in at 9p.m. at night after receiving an unexpected surprise at his door.  He invited us back the next day and we spent most of the afternoon there.  Leaving the past in the past, Aiden now knows his grandfather and we'll see where it goes from here.  After that, we had one day left and I wanted to do some exploring in Seattle, WA.  For those of you who don't know, my husband strongly dislikes bigger cities so venturing into the hustle and bustle that is Seattle was strictly something he did for me.  That day we went to the Space Needle and the Pike Place Market.  I have been wanting to go to the Public market since high school! More (and pictures) on all of these adventures later soon!

At the beginning of the post I mentioned I'd be going back to work and Aiden would be starting "School"...I will explain.  I have just been hired by Bright Beginnings Early Learning Center as an Assistant Administrator. I'll be in the classroom part of the day and in the front office the rest. Its not exactly what I was looking for when wanting to go back to work but I'm putting my degree to use and I can still somewhat be with Aiden.  They have a spot in one of the classrooms at the same location I'll be working at for Aiden.  We checked it out yesterday and met his teacher, he seems excited and has been talking about "school" and "the boys."  I'm hopeful this will be a good thing for both of us!  One more thing before I go...
Word on the street (ok, the official Groundhog Day Website rather) is that Mr. Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow this morning! Ladies and Gentlemen that makes me happy and hopeful to say that Spring is on its way! Yay!!