20 July 2011

Army life at its best... and worst

So the last few weeks have been rough with the late nights hubby has had. A portion of his company is scheduled to deploy next month and they are working hard to prepare everyone for that. The day before yesterday was a bad day for me... Hubby hasn't been feeling the greatest and wanted to go to the doctor but as I tried to call for an appointment, we discovered that he really didn't have much time that he could go in. He was working hours that don't allow for family time or time to take care of himself. I was frustrated. I decided that I was done. If he wasn't appreciated, why should I step up and help those who weren't appreciating him? I would not get involved in the FRG (Family Readiness Group) during this deployment, I would not help or volunteer for anything.
After a very long night spent at the ER and then some very willing soldiers who stepped up and took over so that hubby didn't have to worry about his platoon yesterday, I had some thinking to do... My desire to help others is stronger than my frustration with some.
I have struggled with what direction to go in my career... After an FRG meeting/deployment briefing last night, I know that I am here to help others, to guide others and to listen to others. I have SO much pride in my husband and the life that we live. I am strong and my strength is more than I need... So, I will offer that strength to those who need it. After a Change of Command ceremony today in which our new company commander took her place in the company, a lot of thinking and some sleep... I am ready. I will work with the FRG this deployment. I will work with the company to better the family aspect of it. I will use my knowledge of this Army life that we lead to help other, newer or not as familiar spouses navigate this sometimes draining, many times frustrating, most of the time exciting and almost always rewarding life we have chosen. As so many of us families have learned to do... Embrace the suck! That is just what I will do! I will embrace it and run with it! After all, who's going to make things better if everyone gives up??

31 May 2011

New adventures.......

So we have finally been able to settle in as an active duty family again!!! After the last post, we received orders to Fort Stewart, Georgia. About 25 miles southwest of Savannah, GA and right around a 2-hour drive to the FL state line. As far as location, so far... the jury is out. We've enjoyed being closer to the beach, but we have yet to explore very far with the unpacking and setting up home.
I guess the journey here needs a post... After receiving our orders, I was able to get movers scheduled. We weren't very far in to PCS (Permanent Change of Station) season so I didn't plan on having an almost 4 week wait! After getting that scheduled, I planned my cross-country drive. The packers came on Friday, 16 April and the house was almost completely packed in about 9 hours. The weekend consisted of goodbyes with friends, church family and one more 'Sunday lunch' at my mom and dads. The movers came on Monday and loaded the truck. At about 1530 (Yes, I've almost completely adopted the military life!), the truck drove away with our HHG (Household Goods) headed for GA. Monday evening was movie night with some friends & family and then on the way home, I stopped at Kristi & Eric's for one of the hardest goodbyes... The one to my sister & the kids. I stayed at my parents house on Monday night and planned to head out early Tuesday morning. Mom made chocolate gravy & biscuits for breakfast and my brother & his kids came over. Dad & Brent loaded up and tied down my truck... About 9:45, Ruger & I headed out! That morning of goodbyes was a very hard one as well... Said goodbye to my Granny & Gerald, my parents and Brent and the kids. On to the road trip... I made it almost to Tucumcari, NM very late, or early on Wednesday morning. On Wednesday night, I met a very good friend from our early Army days for dinner. (I used to babysit her little girl while she was in college). After dinner, I headed up to Wichita Falls, TX to stay the night at Sheppard AFB. Thursday morning, I left for Haslet, TX to visit with my best friend from our early Army days... Angie and I finally got to meet her daughter, Miss Katelyn. We had lunch and visited for a couple of hours. After our visit, I set out for Magnolia, Arkansas to stay the night with some of my cousins and visit with some other cousins. We had a good visit! Finally, on Friday, I was bound for 'home'... Fort Stewart, GA! I made it to Ft. Stewart at about 0230 on Saturday morning. I was FINALLY back with my husband after almost 7 months of living in different states!!! Kind of interesting that I got to visit with two of my three best friends from our early Army days on my cross country journey back to being an active duty family.
Wow!! Typing it out makes it look A LOT longer than it felt! Pictures of the house will follow in a few days when the boxes that need to go to storage are out of the way and my house is completely finished! More about our adventures in Georgia thus far to come....... For now, off to eat breakfast and conquer the day!

06 April 2011


I guess there's a bit of updating to do, huh?! Here goes... Summer of 2010 - Summer started with a two week stay at Travis AFB. Gary worked on cleaning his section up and getting it organized in preparation for what was to come in November (more on that later...) The Monday after we got home from Travis on Saturday, we drove up to Washington and spent about three weeks with Mark, Dawna & Dustin. We went camping and shopping, played some games, visited & ate lots! We also got to do some visiting with our best friends - Steven & Becca and their munchkins and got to keep their youngest, Baylie Rose a couple of days while they were working. We really enjoyed our vacation up there and are excited to go back hopefully next summer for vacation again! Then came fall... Fall of 2010, Gary & I, along with my parents, my brother & some of his family and my uncle worked for about six or eight weeks on six different pieces of property harvesting lots of different varieties of almonds. We swept, raked, picked up, got rained on, spread the lines of almonds back out to dry and started the process over again! Harvest lasted longer than normal for 2010 because of the weather... So, about two weeks after harvest on November 16th, Gary & I drove up to Sacramento. We stayed in a hotel and at 3:45 a.m. on November 17th, we got up to begin what would be a very long day with many unexpected tidbits of information. I took Gary to MEPS (Military Entrance Processing Station) where he went through a stack of paperwork, a physical exam and a swearing in ceremony. By the end of the day, We were technically an active duty Army family again! We had big plans before Gary was to report to his training station on the 29th of November... Alas, is common in the Army, things are always subject to change! What we had planned to be a little over a week long, cross country drive back to east Tennesse to spend Thanksgiving with all of Gary's dad's side of the family, minus Mark, Dawna & Dustin... quickly turned in to a rushed, gotta get to Fort Benning, GA in 4 days, trip! It ended up working out fine and we spent Thanksgiving with them anyways! Fast forward to the end of January when Gary was finally given orders with a date for his next training assignment... Redstone Arsenal, Alabama. That is where we are now... More on orders to our permanent duty station in the next post! This is waaayyyy too longand probably pretty boring by now!! hahaha Until next time............

23 February 2009


So I've failed miserably in my attempt to keep updated on here!! We were so busy through the holidays and then I've just put it off since then! Since September..... We had a very eventful two week trip to Washington state with a few purposes... Gary was testing for their state police department in Tacoma the first week and the second week was spent in Spokane with family and friends. Snow like crazy and freezing cold weather! Go figure that the time we're there, they have the worst winter they've had in over 10 years! We had the chains on our tires almost the ENTIRE two weeks we were there. We stayed with Gary's parents & Dustin the time we were in Spokane and had an early Christmas as we were going to head home on Christmas eve. All in all, long trip, but we had a good time! Gary is still in school at Stanislaus, I am waiting on some paperwork from there... He is also still scheduled to graduate in May. We are unsure of where we are going once that happens due to all the budget cuts and hiring freezes happening with almost every police department and LE agency around here! We'll know when it happens I guess! We are busy right now with AF stuff... Gary has five weekends in a row of being gone, but since he didn't do much flying from September until last weekend, I can't complain! This coming weekend, I am involved in a Casino night fundraiser for the Race for Autism foundation hosted by CV Racing. (wanna come? hahaha) After that, things should slow down some more... with the exception of the nieces & nephews sporting events. Not much else new to share... Will share again at some point....... :-)

16 September 2008

Hawaii Pics... Finally

The pics at the top are all taken at the Punchbowl National Military Cemetary... The fireworks and ones of Gary & Nikki are from the Friday night fireworks show on Waikiki Beach and the dark scenery ones are all of Waikiki Beach at night. (I think that's right... Gary will correct me if I'm not... hehehe) Enjoy!!
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New?? Nothin' much...

Well......... Not too much going on lately. The only real news around our place is that Gary's parents and little brother will be moving soon... They put in an offer on a house in Spokane, WA and it was accepted. They are just going through escrow now and plan to head up that way sometime in the first part of October. Nikki's parents are working on getting all of the almond orchards harvested and keeping up with everything else. Gary is scheduled to fly to Elmendorf AFB in Alaska at the end of September for a couple of days on a training flight. Nikki is keeping her options open as far as careers go... She is taking the CBEST in October and hopefully will be able to start substitute teaching when the school districts start back after christmas in January. If the CBEST proves more difficult than originally thought, she is also taking a test for the Customs and Border Protection Agency in October. Something has to come through before December, right?! Keep prayin'!!! Nothing else to report really... Hope all is well with everyone else!

29 August 2008

Photo Shoot....

A month or so ago Gary & I had some pics done by a couple of ladies that were a blast to work with!! I am trying to upload a few of them... here's attempt 2 or 3!! hahaha These were all done by Gayle... I'll try and get the ones from Cherie in another post... if I don't get them on here, her site has a few of them and it is: cheriegilbertsonphotography.blogspot.com