Archive for the ‘Military Life’ Category

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!!!

 

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!

 

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

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!

This wasn’t on our original bucket list but was something that our MAG (Marine Air Group~ aka a group of squadrons) put together for the kids.  We did a full tour of the Firehouse on base and had a wonderufl time.  It was totally entertaining and very educational!

Even little Pixi got in on the action climbing into the Big Red Engine for a photo op!  The kids toured the kitchen, sleep quarters, conference room, and living room.  They got to check out the inside of the trucks and learned what just about every piece of equipment is used for!  They also learned about the ambulance and all of it’s equipment.

The final part of the tour was a Firefighter demonstration.  This is by far my favorite part.  Not only is all of their gear pretty cool but it is SO important for children, especially the little ones, to be comfortable with them.  This firefighter put on all of his gear, icluding his oxygen tank and mask and crawled around on his hands and knees (just as he would in a fire) talking to them.  Great experience for the kids to know what Firefighters look and sound like should they be coming to help them in the event of a fire, and to not be afraid and run away.

Another great day with another great adventure!

 

***Most City Fire Departments hold tours during Fire Prevention Week each year so keep a look out for information on those!  Always a great experience for the kids.***


Free Clipart

On June 14, 1777 the beautiful Stars and Stripes that we know and love, was officially adopted as our Nations Flag by the Continental Congress. I am so proud that the P’s have a great love of their Flag and Country! Here’s P1 saying the pledge at 3 and her lovely rendition of “You’re a grand ol Flag!”

I Pledge Allegiance:

You’re a Grand Old Flag:

We crossed off another one from the Summer bucket list today; Visit a Museum.  And I can’t wait to go do it again!  The P’s LOVE museums but after living in DC a couple of years ago and making our way through the Smithsonian’s we haven’t visited any here in San Diego.  That all changed today when we went down to Balboa Park for their Resident Free Tuesday!

Each Tuesday of the month they host FREE entrance to certain museums.  Today we were able to visit the San Diego History Center and the Veterans Memorial Museum.  We can’t wait to go back and check out the Science Center, Natural History Museum, Air and Space Museum and SO many more!  Not to mention, just walking around the park is a great day…it’s Beautiful!

Resident Free Tuesday’s Schedule:

First Tuesday Reuben H. Fleet Science Center Centro Cultural de la Raza San Diego Model Railroad Museum San Diego Natural History Museum (Not valid for Titanic exhibition or 3D films)

Second Tuesday Museum of Photographic Arts San Diego History Center Veterans’ Museum and Memorial Center

Third Tuesday San Diego Art Institute Mingei International Museum San Diego Museum of Art San Diego Museum of Man Japanese Friendship Garden
Fourth Tuesday San Diego Air & Space Museum (Not valid for special exhibitions) San Diego Automotive Museum (Last admission 3:45pm) San Diego Hall of Champions SELECT House of Pacific Relations International Cottages
Fifth Tuesday Normal museum prices in effect. The Timken Museum of Art is always free.

Have you visited any of these museums?  I’d love for you to leave a comment and let me know which one’s your favorite!

 

Our Summer Bucket list is in full swing.  The kids are having a blast and have been surprisingly VERY well behaved!  Today we did a quick lunch and visit to the San Diego Zoo, which also happens to be item #1 on our Summer Bucket list.

We’ve been Zoo members, which also includes membership to the Zoo Safari Park, since my oldest was about 15 months and it never gets old!  With two parks that are very large we love to go and spend a couple of hours, always seeing something new.  The children’s zoo, complete with a petting corral and play structure is always a huge hit with the P’s too!

It’s been years since we went to the Summer Nighttime Zoo and we are really looking forward to it this year! The Nighttime Zoo starts June 23rd and runs until September 3rd, from 2pm-9pm.  The San Diego Zoo is a great place for an evening outing with the kids to enjoy some great entertainment!

If you are a local resident I highly recommend purchasing a year membership.  With Adult single day passes being $42, an $88 membership (or $109 for two people in the same household) quickly pays for itself!  Also, Active Duty Military are always FREE!

 

As you are are planning your weekend getaway, you BBQ with friends, your extra day off of work… remember the reason for celebrating Memorial Day. That Service Members have fought and died around the world so that you may be free. Some may not believe in the politics of War, they may not agree on what or why we are fighting but please, as a citizen of the United States, support our Military, be thankful for them, and Honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice; no matter what your opinions are.

Below is the poem ‘Freedom is not Free’ written by Kelly Strong.

Freedom Is Not Free

I watched the flag pass by one day.
It fluttered in the breeze.
A young Marine saluted it,
and then he stood at ease.
I looked at him in uniform
So young, so tall, so proud,
He’d stand out in any crowd.
I thought how many men like him
Had fallen through the years.
How many died on foreign soil?
How many mothers’ tears?
How many pilots’ planes shot down?
How many died at sea?
How many foxholes were soldiers’ graves?
No, freedom isn’t free.
I heard the sound of TAPS one night,
When everything was still
I listened to the bugler play
And felt a sudden chill.
I wondered just how many times
That TAPS had meant “Amen,”
When a flag had draped a coffin
Of a brother or a friend.
I thought of all the children,
Of the mothers and the wives,
Of fathers, sons and husbands
With interrupted lives.
I thought about a graveyard
At the bottom of the sea
Of unmarked graves in Arlington.
No, freedom isn’t free.
If you wish to do something more for your military get involved today!
T.A.P.S- Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors
MCLEF- Marine Corps Law Enforcement Foundation
*each of the these provide support to survivors of fallen Military personnel
*these organizations support current military and their families while serving/deployed.

“… today there are more than 1.2 million military children, and since 2001 approximately 2 million children have experienced deployment of a parent…”   ~The National Child Traumatic Stress Network

There is one important thing to be noted of a Military child; they did not choose this lifestyle, they were born into it.  An Active Duty servicemember makes a choice to enlist and those of us who are Military Spouses made the choice to marry our servicemembers.  But our children had that choice made for them, they were born into military families and because of it are some of the most proud and resilient children I know!  They go through all the trials of learning and growing with added stressors of moving, saying goodbye to friends, and spending months apart from their servicemember parent.

They are truly special children and we Celebrate them, our littlest Heroes!

“Established by Caspar Weinberger, the Month of the Military Child recognizes the important role military children play in our communities.”  ~DoDlive.mil

***765,000 of our military children have Active duty parents, and approximately 225,000 have a parent who is currently deployed***

 

We, as a nation, take this month to recognize our military children and thank them for their unknown service to their country.  Here are some great resources for those military families:

Please join me in thanking a Military Child today!

 

 

 

 

 

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