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We’re having a baby… and daddy’s deployed.

I’m seven month pregnant now. It feels like it’s just flying by. I actually feel better this pregnancy than I did with my first two, and I’m pretty sure I have my first two babies to thank for that. I run after them constantly. The result is a slightly fitter mommy, and I haven’t gained a whole lot of unnecessary weight. I’m tired, but honestly, what pregnant lady isn’t tired? My kids are acting up, but once again, what kid doesn’t act up when they can sense their world is about to change yet again? My dogs are being horrible, for proof, just look at my dog shaming post. 🙂 But overall, I really can’t complain.

Blue Eyes is excited for a baby brother. He keeps telling me we are naming the baby Silver. Not exactly a name I would pick for my kiddo, but at least Blue Eyes is happy at the idea of another baby. I’m not sure he quite understands that the baby will be born as just that, a baby. I’m pretty sure he thinks the baby will be Snow White’s size, and they’ll be able to play right away. I feel a little bad for the surprise he’s about to get.

I’m pretty sure Snow White realizes something is about to happen. All she wants to do lately is snuggle with mommy. We also found out she needs some testing for her hearing, so I’m hoping to have all of that worked out before the baby gets here. They think it’s a really simple fix, like needing tubes in her ears, but as a mommy, I will feel better knowing how we can take the next steps to help my baby girl in growing.

Now that it’s obvious I’m getting close to the end, I get never ending questions. Was this baby planned? Are you going to keep going? You can’t have just three you know. Do you have a name? How are the kids handling it? How’s your hubby doing with it? Oh your husband is deployed? Will he be back in time? He won’t? Oh you poor thing… you should have planned better…

Here’s the deal, don’t tell me we should have planned better. Every baby is a blessing, and even if it’s not the “ideal” time, I’m so excited to have this baby. To hear people act like this baby is an inconvenience is offensive and rude.

And it’s not poor me. I signed up for the military life when I signed papers to enlist. I didn’t expect to marry a military man, but I knew what I was getting into, unlike a lot of wives, I knew what it would look like. I count it lucky that he’s been gone as little as he has. Since having kids, he has rarely been gone. He was gone for two months right after Blue Eyes was born, and since then only little periods here and there. He’s made it to two of our kids births, and every birthday so far. That’s rare for a military family. I count my blessings.

Yes, I’m afraid.

Who wouldn’t be? I don’t want to be alone when I have this baby, and God willing my mom will be here in time. But I’m not so worried about me being here alone as I’m worried about my kids. Thankfully I have made some great friends here, that I know will take care of my babies until a family member or myself can be home.

Yes, I’m sad my husband won’t be here.

But tears won’t help me. What I need is to be as organized as possible. To find out if there is a chance of being able to FaceTime the birth, or if I can have someone available to send him pictures through email as soon as possible. Finding ways to let my husband be here, even if he can’t physically be here. After all, it’s his baby and he’s got more to adjust to when he comes home than people realize. He was gone most of the pregnancy. He didn’t get to see the ultrasounds. He didn’t get to see my belly grow, or feel the kicks. His gender reveal was a picture I set up with the kids so he had something cute to see. He hasn’t gotten to buy the baby clothes, or put sheets on our well loved crib. He hasn’t had the time to prepare that I have. He left with two kids and he’s coming home to three. Talk about scary!

No, I’m not strong.

I do this because I have to. I’m not strong. I break down, and cry. Blue Eyes has become very sensitive to mommy’s crying, and tries to take care of me. But it doesn’t make me weak either. It shows my babies that I’m human, that I miss daddy as much as they do. And that’s okay.

Would I do it again?

Yes! A million times yes. This is my baby and I can’t wait to meet him. This is our last baby as far as we have planned, but that makes this pregnancy all the more important. Hopefully people can understand that. And maybe it will help someone else who is giving birth alone.

Dog Shaming… I had hoped to never have to do this.

Dog Shaming at it's finest

Dog Shaming at it’s finest

As you know by now, I have one incredibly smart blacklab/weimaraner. This is Blackjack, and since daddy has been deployed, he has been a royal plain. People always laugh when they see the dog shaming posts, heck I’m guilty of laughing too. Until its your dog. Blackjack has always been a handful. We can’t put him in a kennel because it takes less than a half an hour to escape every type of kennel there is. I can’t leave him unsupervised in the back yard because he will open the latch and take himself for a walk…. actually I can’t leave him unsupervised anywhere. He’s opened more doors (including firedoors) than any dog should ever be able to. Whenever we have company they are always amazed when he pops the back door open in two seconds flat, and just lets himself out. They think it’s the greatest trick ever, I know better.

When my husband was in bootcamp (before I met him), he left this dear sweet dog with his aunt. That poor aunt has had to replace most of her furniture and do a little bit of redecorating because of this guy here. By the time I married my husband, Blackjack was three years old, and way way to smart for his own good. The first deployment started okay, until he figured out how to open the fridge. I chalked it up as a fluke and cleaned up the mess. A month or two later, I had tried every child lock available for kids and dogs. Then I started barricading the fridge. Just to leave the house I would put all of the kitchen chairs in front of it. It worked well enough to get through deployment.

Over the years he’s just gotten worse. He’s eight years old and the only thing we have found that works is a muzzle. I’m not a huge fan of muzzles. I always associated them with dogs who are aggressive, or who might bite you. I didn’t realize it would be the only that kept my dog from eating the trash, or opening the fridge and trampling all of my eggs!!! Most dogs calm down when they hit eight…. not ours. He has just become more stubborn and determined.

You know what? I should have put this dog in the movies. We would have made enough to be comfortable, that’s for sure.

Shame on, dog owners!

I feel your pain.

Guest Blogger: 10 Ways Being a MilSpouse is Like Skydiving For the First Time

Guest Blogger: Jill Pohl

Guest Blogger: Jill Pohl Milspouse Life

10 Ways Being a MilSpouse is Like Skydiving For the First Time

Jill Pohl

The first time I went skydiving was on my 27th birthday. I was young, not sure what I had gotten myself into, and simultaneously excited and nervous. Sounds like getting married to a military man, right? Looking back, that day was filled with so many emotions and experiences, that I can’t help but see the similarities between that 7 hour period and the 5 years (so far) I have been married to my Air Force husband:

1) Everyone else who has already done it has advice for you, but you know that no amount of advice can fully prepare you.

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People always have something to say about marriage. You may have heard something truly inspirational, and retained it. You may have heard something truly inspirational, and forgotten it. Either way, people love to provide unsolicited advice, and whether its good or not, made you upset or made you excited, you took it all with a grain of salt. No marriage is alike, and as much as people try to categorize and stereotype military marriages, they are particularly dissimilar. We all move to different places, respond uniquely to military challenges, and interact differently with our service members. That’s what makes military marriage such an adventure.

2) People keep asking you if you’re scared.

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All the way up to the day I left to jump, people asked me this question. Every time I talk about my husband deploying, people ask me this question. It doesn’t help anything. It just makes you think, “Well I wasn’t. But now, should I be?” This won’t change the fact that we will all probably hear it all our lives.

3) You’ve got a lot of equipment, and you’re not sure you know what to do with it.

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As military spouses, we try and try to prepare. We equip our families mentally and physically: we make sure our spouses have their uniforms ready to go and all the equipment they need (even though we don’t always know what it does). We give them pep talks just as much as they give us pep talks. But oftentimes, none of us really know if there’s weight behind our words. Will it really “all be okay?” Are you really going to feel “just fine?” Maybe not. But we prepare, we say what we need to say to provide encouragement, and that’s all we can do. Even if we don’t fully know what’s going on and if we have everything we need for the next adventure, we just keep truckin’ on.

4) There’s a seemingly endless amount of “hurry up and wait.”

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“Hurry up and wait” is also practically a military motto. We’ve all heard our service member say it to describe a day at work. We’ve all felt it when making calls to Tricare, finding out about an impending PCS move, or trying to move any kind of paperwork through the bureaucracy on base. It’s part of our lives.

5) Right before you take the jump, you realize that you have no idea why you decided to do it.

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After discussing so many times with my service member what military life would ask of us, I truly did wonder, why was I still doing this? It was love, of course, but couldn’t I have fallen in love with someone whose life was a little less, well, unsettled? Why did I even let myself fall in love with someone whose career asked so much of us both? Why did I think it would all be okay, when it has already been so hard? We’ve all asked ourselves these questions, especially in the hardest moments. And even though we know the answer, it doesn’t mean we don’t still ask.

6) As you get ready to go, someone tells you you’re jumping out of the plane doing a barrel roll, or throws some other kind of curveball.

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We all know that we can plan all we want and something still will go against all of our prep work. You think your spouse is going to deploy in August, and all of a sudden you find out that something got messed up with the paperwork, and he’ll have to go later. You’d already been prepared. Or you find out you’re pregnant, and your spouse is going to Squadron Officer School right around your due date. It’s the military. It happens.

7) Sitting in your partner’s lap, you realize how important they are to you. Your lives are in one another’s hands.

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With your military spouse, you go through so much together, how could you not value one another so tremendously? Maybe you’ve only been married for 5 years, like myself, but so much has happened that you are even closer than most longer-married couples.

8) By the time the parachute deploys, you think you’ve gotten through the worst of it. Then you throw up.

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Okay, so my military marriage has never made me throw up. But that parachute deploying, that moment of relief, comes in any military marriage, multiple times. Your service member is back from deployment, or a very long stint at a training program. Finally, he’s home and you have a partner again.

Until you realize that it’s not all better. He’s tired, and not in a great mood. You both aren’t used to having each other around. You argue over small things. You’ll get back into the groove, but let’s be honest, it takes a while.

9) There’s a free fall that feels like it will never end. When the free fall does end, you realize it wasn’t so bad.

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As a milspouse, deployments, moves, finding a new job or new school, all feel daunting. When you come out on the other side, you realize it usually (though there are always exceptions) wasn’t as awful as you’d expected. Sometimes the anticipation really is worse.

10) You may not land on your feet, but you land, your partner’s with you, and you both have huge smiles on your faces as you high-five one another.

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Do I need to explain this one? It feels great to jump. And it feels great to be married to someone who you take big risks with all the time, because at the end of the day, you’re together and you’re happy.

Citation:

“Lemons” photo credit: Alyssa & Colin via photopin cc
“Scared” photo credit: Christopher Cotrell
“In the waiting line” photo credit: fly
“Don’t Panic Don’t Panic” photo credit: Barbara Abate
“Emma looks surprised” photo credit: the Jbird
“Trust” photo credit: purplejavatroll
“Dizzy” photo credit: THX0477
“Helena (#90268)” photo credit: Mark J. Sebastian

It’s a……

The last time I posted I was able to share my family’s exciting news! We are expecting. Life definitely has a way of keeping you busy. It’s the end of January, and life has been flying. In the last two months, we have settled into our new home, and started finding activities that the kids will enjoy. They have an amazing toddler learning center here that offers free child play once a week. The kids love it, and they offer so many things that expand the imagination. Plus it breaks up the sameness of the rest of the week.

We also discovered the local library has toddler reading time. They read stories, sing songs, and do a craft to help the kids remember the story. This is also free for the kids!!!! I swear if you are new to an area, check out the local library. They are usually really good at knowing what is available.

Other than that, we’ve been dealing with Daddy on Deployment. We got super lucky this time. He actually has internet capabilities, and the kids have seen him almost every day so far. Sometimes Blue Eyes asks if daddy is sleeping at work. It’s hard to explain to a three year old that daddy had to go super far to work and won’t be home for a long time. So we are in the process of putting together a daddy wall! I’m buying little pieces here and then, when I get them all gathered, we will have a day to put it all together. I want to make a chain for each day, but we aren’t sure when he will be coming home, so I don’t want to make it too short.

In other exciting news, our baby is growing on schedule. And I’m excited to post this picture that a great photographer friend of mine, Chrystal Parks, made to do our gender reveal! And it looks like we are going to be a two boy, one girl family!!!

It's a boy!!!!

It’s a boy!!!!

Catching Up…. (Pictures)

Look how they've grown from one Halloween to the next!!

Look how they’ve grown from one Halloween to the next!!

Wow, It has been a chaotic couple of months! I had planned to write through the entire PCS process, but it definitely didn’t happen. I thought I’d share a couple pictures from the past two months.

We stayed with my family for a while in-between so my hubby could fix up the house. Unfortunately my hubby had an accident with the table saw, and ended up in the emergency room to re-attach several tendons. Several months later, he has regained most of the use of his hand, although it still really hurts him and his fingers can’t quite straighten out. That caused a lot of panic and fear for our family, but I’m so glad he is doing much better.

When we finally got moved up to our new home we realized that we lost almost all of our storage space. So we’ve been struggling to find homes for everything. Especially things like books (which are still in boxes in the living room) and clothes. I was really spoiled with our custom closets in CA. I feel like I’m constantly buying hangers or struggling to get our two small dressers crammed with clothes. I could really use help from an Organization Fairy!!! I wish they existed. Snow White at the apple orchard

We’ve also been exploring our new home. I must say this is the most beautiful duty station we’ve ever been at (except maybe Pensacola). We love all of the outdoors and the fresh air. We are on an island, so there is gorgeous water all around us and Daddy and Blue Eyes go fishing. Mommy and Snow White went to an apple orchard!

Blue Eyes fishing with daddy

Blue Eyes fishing with daddy

As for my kiddos, Blue Eyes has shot up. We had to go buy 4t clothing for him the other day and he’s not even three yet! Snow White is still a tiny little thing, but her curls are ever present. Not to mention she has developed her mama’s temper. Yeah, we might be in trouble with that one. As for more exciting news??? We are expecting baby number THREE!!!!!  We can’t wait for that one!!announcement

An odd memory

I pulled my gun once, when I was in the military…. Not something I thought about at the time, but sometimes I still think about it. It wasn’t a huge life changing event, but it did make me think.

It was the middle of winter, so I was bundled up to where I could barely move. I was half way through my shift and freezing cold. The flight deck is a lonely place when your on watch. Do walk miles and miles around the perimeter of the flight deck and say hi to everyone who passes just for interaction.

Then I spotted it.
A black object floating toward the carrier.

I called down like I was supposed to and followed the object with my gun. The guy on the radio thought I was kidding and told me to open fire. I rarely swore, but I let out a stream that would have made any salty sailor proud. The watch leader took forever to get up to the top.

I sat there waiting. My arm got sore from holding my gun up, but we had been told horror stories of similar innocent blobs blowing holes in the side of carriers. So I kept my arm raised.

I had a lot of time to think while I waited. Could I actually pull the trigger? I’ve always been a good shot. I wouldn’t miss. But could I do it? Could I take one life to protect the countless others down below my feet? That’s why I’d become a sailor, or better yet, why I’d become an air traffic controller, so I wouldn’t have to find out if I could do it.

The watch commander and I stood there waiting. The blob finally turned enough to show it was a bag of garbage that must have fallen over the side. He went back down to figure out who to call to get the bag out of the water and I could finally give my arm a rest.

We later found out that the bags were a training exercise for divers. They had failed to tell us there was training that day. All I could think was that my gun had been pointed at that bag. What would have happened if one of the divers had shown up before we heard about the training? Someone could have been hurt.

Snow White finally gets a baby blanket

The other night, as I was waiting for my husband’s Dixie Cup to dry, I finally finished my scrap yarn blanket. I could not be happier with how it turned out.

My son has his “Kie, Kie” that he is in love with. I didn’t make the original, but I did make his replacement once the first one was ripped beyond repair. I searched for ages before I was able to find a pattern close enough that he wouldn’t notice the replacement. The closest pattern was from Hodge Podge Crochet, and like most of the patterns I use, it’s completely free.

Blue Eye's Baby Blanket

Blue Eye’s Baby Blanket


For Blue Eye’s awesome baby blanket, Click Here.

I made Snow White a blanket when she was born, and although she likes it, it has always been too heavy for her to carry around. So I decided it was time to make her another blanket. I searched Pinterest for an idea of a blanket that she would like, and I ran across Daisy Cottage’s granny square blanket. The one she made is very small, but I just continued on and made the blanket a decent size for a baby girl.

For Snow White’s beautiful granny square blanket, click here.

Modern Granny Square blanket

Modern Granny Square blanket

I love these two baby blankets. I’m happy both kids like their new blankets. Blue Eyes will need a replacement again soon, this one is starting to see a lot of love. I also couldn’t stop at making Snow White one blanket. I decided to make a second to use up some extra yarn. I had planned on using it as a baby gift, but by the time I had finished, I had fallen in love with the new one as well….

bold and beautiful

bold and beautiful

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What do you think? Do you like the softer more normal girl colors? Or the bold colors?

Staining in a uniform…

All military wives know the panic…. the one where their husband finds out that they needed their uniform ready, and some part of their dress uniform is messed up. Hence the reason I am up so late tonight. My husband needs his dress uniform in the morning, and although his uniform has been dry cleaned and his ribbons are new, there is of course a small problem…. His Dixie cup has a yellow mark in the back. Undoubtedly, the handiwork of our wonderful two year old Blue Eyes. So I am up, making sure his cover gets clean.

I managed to locate a second cover, and it’s getting washed at the moment, just in case I can’t get the yellow out. I’ve tried baking soda and vinegar, and I’ve tried the hydrogen peroxide mix…. I’m not sure what else there is.

So in the madness of transferring, and getting our new housing set up. In the madness of boxes everywhere and my kids unpacking as fast as we can re-pack it, I am up super late making sure his uniform is ready.

Isn’t that what us wives do though? We make sure our men are ready to fulfill their duties. We take care of their uniforms, and pack up when we need to. I’ve been in the service. I know how important uniforms and haircuts can be. For all of you military spouses…. What is your go to trick for uniform care?

Snow White is One!!

Happy First Birthday Snow White!!!

Happy First Birthday Snow White!!!

My beautiful Snow White turned one!!! Mommy has been wanting to make her wear a tutu for a long time, so Snow White’s first birthday was the perfect opportunity. We aren’t having the party until Saturday, but I had to share a picture of my beautiful little girl. It makes my heart happy to see her cute little face in all her ribbons and glitter. It seems like just the other day I was announcing I was going to have her, now she looks like my beautiful little princess.

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princes

PCSing here we come…

Hubby’s time for orders snuck up on us. Don’t get me wrong, we were counting down days until we looked at new orders. I waited patiently as the time counted down to see where our fate would lie. But still, it sneaks up on you. One day you are waiting for the chance to even look, and the next thing you know, you put in for orders and you sit and wait to hear back. I’m really impressed with my hubby’s detailer. He was quick to respond to questions about the orders. He was really friendly and understood why we wanted out of CA. Blue Eyes asthma seems to get worse every year we are here. He was nothing at all like my experiences with a detailer.

Then then we waited, until all of a sudden hubby heard from a sponsor. We have a sponsor! That means he has orders and a date to arrive. It took us a while to track down his orders, but they are two months sooner than we had originally planned. So now the confusion and panic have begun. BIL needs to find a place to rent/buy. We have to figure out what we are keeping, living for BIL, or selling. I have to go through the kids clothes since we will be getting there in winter. Coats and rain boots will be a must. Especially since even Snow White will be walking any day now. I have to gather puppy records and make sure they are up to date on their shots. And so much more! There is so much involved in a military move.

It’s also time to get the house ready to sell. We’ve been working on getting rid of the weird colors for a long time, but it hasn’t been consistent or very fast. Looks like I’ll be getting a babysitter for a day or two and knock out every room so we can get the new flooring estimated and planned.

For some reason this move is different than most. I’m nervous this time. Maybe because it’s the first time hubby and I have moved together, maybe it’s because we have kids now not just the pups. Maybe it’s because we are planning on living on base… whatever is making me nervous this time, I’m hoping my heart will stop racing soon.

Navy Acronyms:

PCS -Permanent Change of Station
Detailer -Person responsible for give new orders.
Sponser -Someone from your new command who will help you in the checking in process.

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