Friday, August 21, 2009

What a week!

Just wanted to share a little bit about what has been on my mind for the last week. I can't believe I have not written since last Monday so I just HAD to post my thoughts for today :-)

This last week started off so exciting because it was C's first week ever of preschool! We had her clothes laid out and her backpack and supplies all ready to go on Sunday night ready for the next morning. However, the morning changed very quickly though for me. As we were trying to get up and get ready for school, B sent me a text message (he had to go to a range early in the morning) to ask me to pray for his battalion because they had their first casualty in Afghanistan. No matter how hard I tried to stay excited and upbeat about preschool, my mind kept wandering to the fallen soldier and his family and friends. This soldier that was killed was part of B's battalion. Let me explain how that relates to B....He is in 1st battalion and within that their are 4 companies. Two of the companies cover South America and the other two recently left for their first mission to Afghanistan. They left in the Spring for about 9 months. B happens to be in one of the "South America" companies, but he could just as easily been assigned to one of the Afghanistan companies. This is why this hit home so hard.

I held it together long enough to get C off to her first day of school and then I cried the whole way home. This soldier had friends and family. He could have been married with kids like B (he was the same rank as B - I later learned he wasn't married and is survived by his parents and brother). He certainly had soldier friends that he worked and trained with and was currently serving with in Afghanistan. I can't help but to hurt for those soldiers that are left to "continue on" without one of their own. I couldn't imagine how hard that would be for my husband if it was one of his soldier do you just move on and continue with the mission? I guess they just do - because they must. Please pray for the family and friends of this fallen soldier and for the 2 companies in 1st battalion that remain in Afghanistan.

Along similar lines, I waved at my neighbor across the street Monday morning as he took out his trash and we exchanged a brief "hey there, how are you?" You know the normal response you come to expect..."just fine. Have a good day." Well, that isn't what he said. He said, "I'm sad...I leave today." I knew he was deploying to Iraq sometime this month but I didn't know exactly when he was leaving. His young wife is expecting their first child in September so I knew this deployment would be very hard for them, but for a grown man in ACUs to bear his feelings so bluntly with a neighbor he barely knows says something. He must be REALLY sad. I saw his car leave and be gone for quite a while. I knew he and his wife must have been saying goodbye. When I saw it back in the driveway later in the day, my heart broke again. She was now back home...without him for the next year. His wife is very young and when I have tried to talk to her, she remains very reserved and hard to get to know. I will continue to reach out to her during this next year since I know she will need it, but I am glad for her that her brother lives with them. At least she has someone to talk to in the evenings and someone else to be around the house. Please be in prayer for my neighbor and his very pregnant wife.

One more to go....Tuesday morning, my friend deployed to Iraq. He is in the 82nd Airborne division (just like my neighbor - they must have sent a ton of people to Iraq this week) and will be gone until the end of next August. He leaves behind his sweet wife of 4 months. She has planned on finishing her college degree and even began her classes this week. She was going to stay busy with school and her part time job and just press on until he came home next year. Well, everything changed when about 3 weeks ago she found out she is pregnant. She and her husband are completely overjoyed to be expecting their first baby. They hadn't planned on beginning their family this early into their marriage, but sometimes it happens anyway. It is really quite a bittersweet time for them because they are so excited to be having a baby, but both very sad that he isn't going to be here for any of it. He left Tuesday and she went for her first doctor's appointment Wednesday morning. They are hoping that he will be able to get his 2 weeks R&R around her due date so he may be here for the birth. Please pray for them and their sweet unborn son or daughter.

With all these things going on in my world (as my sisters would say), this week has been a roller-coaster. I have cried for each of this situations. Some of you have listened to me cry on the phone. My heart breaks for these pregnant young women who will face this momentous time without their husbands. I know what it's like to be pregnant and give birth for the first time and I know what its like to have a husband deployed...I couldn't imagine doing them simultaneously. BUT, these girls will because the have to. They were not given a choice. I will try and be there for both of them as much as I can. We are headed to "newly pregnant" friend's apartment this evening because her washing machine somehow unbalanced itself last week and is "walking" across her laundry room. Hopefully B will be able to fix this for her (this is repayment for when her hubby rescued me last spring when I couldn't get my car to start while B was deployed, haha).

I have had much more go on in this past week (I found 2 roaches in my bathroom at 11:30pm one night B was out of town!) than what I have written, but those things are not nearly as important as these. Please pray for the safety of my deployed friends and for the remaining soldiers in 1st battalion as they all serve our country...and don't forget their sweet wives "holding down the fort" here in North Carolina!

Monday, August 17, 2009


Today I just wanted to share a few pictures of C's first day of preschool. I dropped her off about an hour ago without a hitch. They offer a drive through parent drop off/pick up, but because today was her first day, I decided to park and walk her in. I told myself it was because we had two bags of school supplies to deliver and that she probably wouldn't remember where to hang her backpack...but I honestly think it was because I wanted to give her a hug and a kiss before she walked in the classroom door (you can't do that as easily in the parent drop off line!). I know she is probably having a blast with her teacher and her 9 new classmates. I can't wait to pick her up and hear how it went!!!

So, here is my big girl on her very first day of school....

Saturday, August 15, 2009

My dye job

Normally I am not a very crafty person. I have dappled in scrapbooking some a couple years ago, and I definitely enjoyed it...I just haven't had the time (or space) to continue it since then. I really want to learn to sew on a sewing machine. I think I'd love creating things from all the beautiful fabrics available. I dream of pillows, table runners, curtains, dresses and diaper covers, Oh my!

In the meantime, I saw online that some moms dye their diapers to make them cuter and more fun. I thought that sounds like a cheap and easy way to be crafty and make my diapers more fun (mostly for me...since D could care less what colors are on his bum, haha). Since I had 7 plain white diapers, I thought I'd give it a try!

So, I went to Joann's and picked up some Dylon dye in a beautiful aqua color and got right to work as soon as I got home. It turned out so wonderfully that the next day I went and picked up some yellow and blue dye as well. Those turned out great too! Yay! So far I have had no problems with them bleeding in the wash even though I wash in very hot water. So, check out my recent projects.... I am so proud :-)

Remember they started out plain on the pictures to make them bigger if you REALLY want to see how nice and evenly they came out (if you care, haha)!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Blessings wrapped as children :-)

C starts preschool next week! She and I are going tomorrow morning for orientation to meet her teachers and classmates and to see her classroom and whole school (just a wing of a small church, haha). I am really excited because I know she is going to LOVE it. I really can't believe she is three years old and is starting her first "school" - honestly, I have nearly teared up thinking about it. I probably am not the only mom who feels this way though. :-)

Along those lines, kids are such a handful! They have a way of sucking the life right out of you yet simultaneously filling you with pure joy, haha. At least, thats how I feel.... Everything is more difficult with children - preparing to go somewhere (packing the diaper bag, need I say more?), managing once you ARE somewhere ("come back here" "stay by my side" "sit still"), cooking (they get in the way), cleaning (they want to "help"), and sleeping (you will never sleep-in again..ever...ever) - and those are just the things that came to me right off the top of my head. But seriously, would us parents ever want it any other way?? I think not.

I was just watching "An Adoption Story" on Discovery Heath and the family on there was getting ready to adopt two Korean babies after 10 years of infertility. Wow, what an exciting time in their lives! Two babies after wanting them for 10 years! It made me feel so incredibly blessed that both times in my life that I decided I was ready for a baby, I was able to conceive that next month. I know there have been times when I have taken that for granted, but I do realize what a gift that is...a gift that many couples never receive. Even when I miscarried my first pregnancy, I knew that the joy I felt after becoming pregnant was a joy that many women never get to experience. A POSITIVE pregnancy test should never be taken for granted. It is always a gift....maybe unexpected, unplanned, not desired, or maybe completely wanted and planned for...either way, it is a gift that so many couples never get to experience. I know I will always consider a "Plus" or "two pink lines" as a beautiful gift from God!

This post is quite a rambler, but it was what is on my mind :-) I hope it makes you stop and smell the roses - or at least kiss your kids! Oh, and pray for me next Monday morning as I prepare to get C (and me and D) out the door to preschool! *tear*

Thursday, August 6, 2009

As the Years Go By

I was in Atlanta visiting my family and friends this past week. My trips home are very busy and exhausting but always tons of fun. I typically visit my parents, my in-laws, my sister(s), sisters in law, my aunt and cousins, and my best friend. Today I wanted to reflect briefly on my trip to visit my best friend...

Since I don't use real names on here, I'll call her "La" (and for those of you that know'll know this is REALLY sneaky!). She and I have been friends for a very long time and because of that, we know a lot about each other and have experienced many things together. We met back in late middle school/early high school and were in the same classes, same school band, and same circle of friends. We were pretty much inseparable our senior year of high school (even spending the night at each others house on school nights! Yes, our parents allowed this...we were pretty good kids). We had a joint graduation party and went off to the University of Georgia roomies of course.

At this time, we lived together in our 12x12(ish) dorm room with our beds lofted off the ground. I began to date my future husband, B, this first year of college, so I frequently drove the hour drive home on the weekends. I don't remember perfectly, but I'd probably let La know I was heading off for the weekend and that I'd see her again Sunday evening. I'd trek across campus to my cute little 2 door silver Honda Civic and head home. This drive became very comfortable to me because it was about 44 miles down the same exact road every time....Hwy 78. I grew to know every curve, every stop light, every bridge, every speed limit change very well in my 4 years of college. I didn't know it then, but I was making memories that would "take me back" to this special time in my life every time I traveled on that road in the future.

La met and married a wonderful man that was already established out in Athens, where we went to UGA, so she still lives there. She's not in a dorm anymore but rather in a beautiful home on the outskirts of town. I love visiting her and her family these days. On this particular visit this past weekend, I took a moment to reflect on how things have changed for us over the years...

We used to live in a dorm and I'd probably wave at her as I walked out the door or maybe just call her as I left town. I'd hop in my cute civic with my overnight bag (and probably some laundry) and head home to see my boyfriend...probably with the music cranked up and sunroof open. Fast forward 9 years and this time as I left her, we stood in her driveway and hugged. I also exchanged hugs with her sister and her husband and covered her sweet 5 month old with kisses. I got in my silver minivan with my three year old and watched to make sure I didn't hit her dog as I backed down the drive way. I still traveled the exact same drive as I always have... each curve and hill coming back to me as if I was still 18 years old. I think I actually "feel" younger when I drive "home" from Athens to my mom's house.

It just struck me how much we've grown up and how things are different. Not only are we older, but our priorities have changed as well. We have families now and real responsibilities. We also both have minivans, haha. We both always hate to say good bye and love spending hours together not doing anything more than "hanging out" at her house or at my mom's house. When my baby was brand new, she'd come over and cuddle him and talk to me while I breastfed him...and when she had her baby I was able to visit her in the hospital while she was still recovering from a c-section and teaching her baby how to properly latch-on. I look forward to seeing what the next 10 years brings for us and our friendship, but I know that no matter how old we get, the drive from Athens to Snellville will always feel "just right" and all "broken in" for me....and probably for La too :-)