I cannot take credit for this one but HAD to share it with all of you.

As most of you know we are on Deployment #2 and Megan, one of my bestest friends ever gave this to me after my husband left.  This was such a sweet gesture and going through everything that she put together made me feel that much more capable. Okay, okay, I’m not going to lie it also made me cry.  But more importantly,  reading each of the inscriptions made me realize that we CAN raise our children when they are away, we CAN keep up the house and the yard and the cars when they are away, and we CAN continue on with our lives while they are away because of one thing; EACHOTHER!  There is nothing like another Military wife to understand all of the ups and downs and be there for you through it all.

So….what’s in the Deployment Survival Kit?

  • Marbles; for when you’ve lost yours
  • Worry Stone; to take your worries away
  • Stationary; for all the letters you’ll be writing
  • Pen; to sign your X’s and O’s
  • Sucker; because deployments suck
  • Kleenex; to wipe away all the tears
  • Flashlight; to remind you that there is light at the end of the tunnel
  • Paperclip; to help you hold it all together
  • Mounds Bar; to remind you of the “mounds” of love and support you have from family and friends
  • Laffy Taffy; to remind you to laugh
  • Hershey’s Kisses; to remind you of your Marines Kisses
  • Life Savers; to remind you that you are one

She also included a picture frame with a beautiful print of encouraging words and a copy of The Silent Rank by Elizabeth Soutter Shwarzer.  If you’ve never read it, you MUST! (I’d write it out here but then I’d just start crying again).

Megan~  Thank you so much for this!  You have been such an amazing friend!!!


The Cheer Season is officially under way and this year, to kick it off we went old school with an Ice Cream Social!  Before Camp and Practice started I wanted the girls to get to know eachother and build cohesion from the start…and what makes little girls happier than some Ice Cream!

I set out a spread of Vanilla Ice Cream, waffle bowls, mini chocolate chips, rainbow sprinkles, whipping cream and chocolate and caramel toppings.  Bottled water and Honest Kids juice pouches to drink. The girls got all sugared up and I took the opportunity to go over the guidelines for the season with the parents.

I also took this time to give them a little gift:  A Cheer ‘Survival’ kit.  I bought inexpensive water bottles from Michaels and used puff paint to write their names and team on them.  Inside was a little bag containing extra hair ties, a small bottle of hair spray, and a few safety pins.  And of course, the cheerleader accessory of choice-a giant hair bow!

Looking forward to a great season!

This year’s camping trip certainly wasn’t perfect (the weather at the beach was horrible, the clouds were too low to see all of the fireworks, and one of the mama’s was on crutches) but when you add 5 marines, their wives, and 11 Devil pups to a couple of campsites on the beach….LOTS of fun will be had by all!  And, watching Dolphins swimming  just a few yards off the shore, certainly makes up for the cold windy weather!

If you are Military and have access to the camp sites on San Onofre Beach I HIGHLY recommend going.  There are RV hookups and cottages to rent also but in my opinion, a tent on the sand is the way to go!  Each site is equipped with water and electric, a picnic table, fire ring, and an amazing view.  And what better time to go than to celebrate Independence Day!

The resort beach also has bathrooms and warm showers, lifequards on duty, and playground for the kids.

My girls, especially, enjoyed the playgrounds on the sand.

Of course, there wasn’t much that little Pixi didn’t enjoy about her camping trip.

The digging conditions were superb!

and the Guacamole was plentiful!

The big P’s did a little “Surfing”

And Bubba had a blast just being a boy!

But the most fun was had around the fire ring, roasting marshmallows, enjoying our friends, and celebrating the good ol’ U.S. of A!

I hope you all had a wondeful 4th of July!


P1 LOVES lemonade….fresh squeezed, homemade, by her!  So when we were creating our Summer Bucket List it is no surprise that she wanted to “Make Lemonade”.

What you will need:

  • 2 large lemons
  • 1/4 cup of sugar
  • water
  • jar or bottle

We have this great little hand juicer that I got at Ikea for a couple $$ and the kids have fun squeezing their lemons (or oranges) for their juice.

While the kids are having fun making a mess, put the sugar in the jar

 And when they’re done, add the fresh lemon juice.  Stir in the sugar until it’s desolved.

Fill the rest of the jar up with cold water and enjoy!


The BevMo!  5 cent wine sale is going on NOW and they asked me to head on in to check it out.  Here’s what I can tell you, if you are a wine lover or just an occasional wine drinker, you NEED TO KNOW about this sale!

From now until July 9th, at BevMo! you can purchase a bottle of wine at regular price and get the second of the same bottle for 5 CENTS!  (In case you didn’t do the math, that is like 2 for the price of 1!)

So I went and checked it out.  There were so many different wines to choose from.  Everything from red to white to bubbly, North Coast to Chilean.  And for every price range, too. Bottles that I saw ranged from $8.99 on up to $29.99.  I was in there so long perusing the aisles that I was asked 4 times (twice by the same employee) if “I was finding everything ok”.  Don’t worry, if you don’t have an hour to look around and search for your perfect wines, you can do it online!  Just go to Bevmo.com and find your local store.  You can search through the wines and purchase them online, then simply go into the store and pick them up.  They will have them boxed up and ready to go for you.

The wines on sale always vary which makes it fun to try somehthing new!  The employees can usually offer great recommendations and if you buy something you end up not liking just bring it back!  With your original receipt and bottle they will exchange or refund, now how’s that for great service?!

The 5 cent wine sale is the perfect time to stock up!  I now have a variety of wines on hand to give as gifts, use for dinner parties, or just enjoy with a delicious dinner on a Saturday night.


***Disclaimer:  All opinions expressed in this post are my own.  For purposes of content I was supplied with a gift card to use for  purchasing from this sale***

Man does it take a long time to fill up water balloons….I should have thought about that before putting packs of them in the P’s “Welcome to Summer” Buckets!  In the end it was a fun day had by all (almost all, we waited until little Pixi was napping) and the best part was me launching them off the upstairs balcony watching the P’s giggling in the back yard as they embarked upon a summertime right of passage for the first time! (At first, they didn’t realize they were supposed to actually throw them at eachother, LOL).

And while we’re talking water balloons….does anybody remember those ‘water grenades’ and know where to get them?   Hope you’re having a great summer!

There is a lot of paperwork and planning involved with a Catholic Baptism and when you’re a Military family that moves around, it’s even more involved when you have Godparents that live out of state and you aren’t registered with a Church for very long.  But, we finally were able to have our younger two children Baptized this past Sunday at Blinder Memorial Chapel on Camp Pendleton.  It was a beautiful day spent with our family!  Thank you to my sister, Jessica, for agreeing to be their GodMother and my Mom for coming to celebrate with us!

Big Sister posing outside before Mass

My handsome little man (he insisted on wearing the Rosary that auntie gave him).

My sweet baby girl, wearing the necklace that auntie gave her and the pin my Mama gave me when I was Baptized.

My family with Godmother “auntie” Jessi


Myself, Mama, and Sister with the P’s

One of the items we added to our Summer Bucket List a little late was to “Go to the Farmers Market”.  Last Sunday, that is exactly what we did!  I have to say, the North San Diego Farmers Market was a little smaller than I had hoped.  It is really somewhere you could just swing by and pick up your produce for the week not really a “make a day of it” kind of market.  But, it is located on a historic farmstead (which just happens to be dirctly behind a golf center~oh today’s world) and you can tour the farmhouse.  It was 90* last Sunday so we didn’t, but I’d like to go back  and check it out!

The P’s LOVE fruit especially berries so they were happy with their purchases of Strawberries and a Berry/Eugenia mix.

The only other fruit we found there last week was citrus so we didn’t buy any.  The woman there informed us that they are very local farmers (San Diego County only, unlike bigger markets that bring in produce from all over SoCal) and that each week varies.  She assured me that this week there would be plums and other stone fruits.

Want to visit?

The North San Diego Farmers Market is open on Sundays from 11-4pm at the Sikes Adobe Farmstead 12655 Sunset Drive, Escondido, CA 92025.  They do accept credit/debit cards but you must get “Market Money” from the booth at the front and there is a $1 charge for every $20 you get from them.  In my opinion it’s better just to bring some cash.

If you are looking for a Farmer’s Market in your area check out: Eat Local Grown for a map of local gowers and Farmers Markets

The P’s have never been to the fair so when Peyton was invited to perform with her dance studio we jumped on the chance to take the whole family (well, most of the family….thank you USMC for stealing Wunderdad from us while he was on leave) and cross another item off our Summer Bucket List.

I was really pleased with the ‘Family Friendly’ quality of the San Diego County Fair.  Aside from the massive crowds, which alone can give a mama a massive coronary, the people working the fair were very pleasant.  Seriously, it seems like they were mostly high school kids and senior citizens, quite a far cry from the typical ‘carnies’ you envision.  And the crowd itself was mainly families and teenagers.  We were there on a Wednesday afternoon so I don’t know if the demographics change a little on the weekends or at night.

The performance was a success and afterwards the P’s took a spin through KiddieLand.

Having little ones I really appreciated this area of rides and games that was specifically for kids!  The rides took an average 3-4 tickets as compared to 4-6, and the P’s had a great time on the ’roller coaster’.

We were lucky enough to come home with a new family member too!  Meet Goldy the Goldfish.  At the goldfish game it is $2 for 15 tries or $5 will guarantee you a fish in a tank.  Guess which one we did!

For Pixi’s enjoyment we perused the Agri-Fair (She loves her “A-mee-mows”) where we saw cows, piggies, sheep, chickens, and lots of  ”Bunnneeee!”s.  (pictured)

A trip to the fair wouldn’t be complete without some sort of treat so we finished off our day with a Snow Cone (cotton candy flavor)!  I didn’t get a treat (although for surviving 5 hours and a dance performance at the county fair, solo with 3 P’s I should be awarded a medal) so I may need to go back just to have some funnel cake.

Planning on visiting the San Diego County Fair?

  • The SDfair runs through July 4th
  • Adult admission is $13, Children 6-12 $7 (Tuesdays they are FREE), and 5 and under are FREE


This year the P’s made a gift for Father’s Day.  Since Daddy is preparing to head out again we thought a pillowcase to take with him would be perfect!

I bought a tan pillow case to match the sheets he’ll be using and we used red and blue paint to add each of the P’s handprints.  Since the P’s say “Now I lay me down to sleep” everynight as part of their bedtime routine I came up with a little verse that started with the same phrase.  I used silver puff paint to print it onto the pillow case.

It reads:

 Now I lay me down to sleep, 

Our handprints are here for you to keep,

To remember exactly the way they are,

 Even when you are so far. 

And we will keep you in our hearts,

Until the day we’re no longer apart.

We Love You Daddy!

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