Tuesday, July 23, 2013

One Year ago Today

One year ago today, my husband's boots hit US soil. Our year long deployment was finally almost over. He only had to de-MOB then he would be back home with us!
 I can't believe it's been a year! I would love to say it was an easy transition back as a family unit, but it wasn't. We had one of the hardest reintegrations I've ever heard of. But I will say, we are doing MUCH better these days. Things are falling into place a little better.
There are a few things that still need to be worked out, but those will take some time and effort on both of our parts. I'm just so thankful that my husband came home in one piece. While he isn't currently with us (stupid trainings) knowing he's on US soil and that we survived that horribly LONG deployment, as a family, makes me feel like we can accomplish anything.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Our Trip to Michigan

Near the end of June the husband and I packed up his truck and the kids and headed up to Michigan to visit my daddy. I haven't seen him since Thanksgiving. It was REALLY nice to get back to where I grew up and what is really familiar to me. I wasn't sure if we were going to be able to go or not, but was REALLY excited when M told me to start planning the trip.

My mom was going out of town so we offered to take my aunt to the airport the night we were going to leave. We packed the car, gave the kids hair cuts and got them ready for bed. We left late at night so they would sleep through the night. I swear, driving with two kids, I totally recommend driving at night. There is less traffic and they will sleep! It's heaven. Anyhoo. We arrive at my aunt's house in GA the next morning. Our plan was to stay there for the day, let M sleep and leave that night around bed time again. The kids had a GREAT time playing with their favorite Aunt. She of course loved spending all of the time with them. They were allowed to run around and be loud, play on tractors and such. We were also able to set up some cans and shoot our .22s. I've never been able to do something like this and was looking forward to it. I must say, I'm a REALLY good shot. First time, got all 5 cans without missing one! How cool am I??? I think M was pretty impressed. :) Made me feel pretty good.
Kids playing in my Aunt's barn with the tractors and Pretty Girl being silly

After we ate dinner, we got the kids ready for bed again and headed out. We made it to the Kentucky border before Pretty Girl decided to wake up and start screaming. Literally screaming. We had to stop at Exit 11 (the same exit as M's college) and get a hotel room for the night. We weren't planning on that, but you have to plan for the unexpected when your little one won't sit in the car without screaming. The next morning we headed out again. Stopped for lunch and hit Cabela's when we reached Michigan. Every trip up there we have to stop at least once. Even if it's just to look. We arrived at my dad's around 8pm. It felt great getting out of the truck for more than an hour. :)
Top left Pretty girl trying to get comfy in the car, Bottom L and top right at Cabela's, Bottom right Pretty girl mastering the stairs and of course my daddy and the kids
Left- Pretty girl at the park and sitting in my dad's seat at work. Right-Pretty girl being silly and Booger asleep in the truck

While visiting with my dad, we were able to visit Greenfield Village. It is run and owned by Ford. It's really cool. It's set up as an old time town. You are able to ride a train around the village as well as a Model T! How cool is that???? M and I could have spent an entire day just walking around and seeing everything, but my dad wasn't that big into it, so after the Model T ride, the train ride and lunch, he was ready to go to the Museum. It was interesting, but not as interesting as the village. Ah well. We will just have to go back another time.
TRAINS! M and the kids on the train and M and the kids in a life size doll house at Greenfield Village
Left- HUGE train, Booger and I on the Carousel. Right Wiener mobile and Booger on the carousel

While up in Michigan we were able to see some of my family that I don't get to see too often. I got to visit with my Aunt Sandy, which made me super happy. She hadn't met Pretty Girl yet. We also got to see my cousin, who is like a brother to me. We also just relaxed and enjoyed time with my dad. It was a great trip and of course was over WAY too soon.

On our way home we stopped in Tennessee to visit one of M's really close friend from college. It was great getting to finally meet him and his wife. I had heard so many stories that it was nice to put a person with the stories. They also have two kids who are about the same age as our kids. They took us to their pool, we ate lunch and Pretty Girl passed out on their floor she was so tired. We left around dinner time and headed back home. We made it back to FL by early morning on the 4th. M went straight to bed and I unpacked the truck.
At the pool (please don't mind me in a bathing suit) and bottom is Pretty girl asleep on the floor

It was a great trip, too much driving for my taste, but I'm still glad we were able to do it. Maybe the next time we will be able to fly. It's just soooo expensive as a family of four. :( I wish I could see my daddy more. Maybe I can convince him to come visit more. I got spoiled while M was deployed because my dad came down about every two months or so to stay and help me out. It was awesome seeing him so often.

Anyhoo. I love being home and around my own stuff, but I do miss living up there. Then I remember the winters and I'm happy where we are, plus my mom lives here I'm not sure I could move away from her again.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Summer List Up-date

I feel like we are about half way done with summer (or at least my summer vacation) and felt this would be a great time to do a quick up date on my summer to-do list.

To refresh your (and my) memory, here is my list:

*Take my Middle Grades Social Studies Certification test and pass it

* Study for my Social Studies 6-12 test (this one is SUPER hard)

* Find a master's program and will allow me to get my paid step increase when finished

* Find scholarships for said master's program

* Sign up for said master's program (I really should have started this like 5 years ago)

* Take a trip up to Michigan to see my Daddy -We ended up going in June, I have a whole blog post dedicated to this.

* Visit with my Biffle, our dates have been too few and far between lately

* See if there are any other openings at a different school and apply for them (done in June and ongoing throughout the summer)

* Work out at least 3-4 days a week (gotta get this weight off, again) I was doing great, until we went on vacation, now I need to start back up again after taking three weeks off.

* Spend LOTS of time with the kids in my mom's pool

* Make some time for ME and to learn to just RELAX

* Go through old bills and shred ones we don't need - I actually completed this this past weekend. It didn't take too long, which was nice

* Create disaster binder with all important papers (hurricane season is upon us)- Got this done at the same time as the one before. It's not organized, but at least it's done and in the proper place.

* Back up all pictures onto an external hard-drive

* Clean out the guest bedroom and get everything in it's place.

I'm feeling very accomplished since M left for a training. It's amazing how motivated when he's not home. Not to mention I have some new fun things to blog about, just waiting for some of them to start before I start blogging about them. I will keep you updated on my to-do list.

Friday, July 12, 2013

I'm alive, I promise more posts will be coming soon!

Whew! We have been so busy since I got out of work. I can't believe how fast this summer is going. This is only our second summer spending more than three weeks together. It's quite nice. I just wanted to stop in and say hello real quick. I have a ton of posts to catch up on, and with M gone at a training now, I should have some more time to blog. :) Even though I do miss him.

Anyways. I will leave you with a video of Pretty Girl swimming. She FINALLY has let go of us and is trying to swim on her own. It's funny to watch how excited she gets. Enjoy! Happy Friday!!!