Saturday, December 18, 2010

Its beginning to look alot like Christmas!

Sooo, its been ages since I've posted, and while I know its a bit neglectful, deep down I know that I only blog out of boredom, haha, and essentially no one really reads it so its not like I'm letting anyone down. :-D

The funny thing, is I used to be an avid blogger, with avalanches of thoughts just pouring out of me and out into the world, but since I found my happiness years ago in my better half, I just don't have that need to share my life with the world, because I would rather just live it!

But...I still enjoy writing and since I so seldom get to indulge recreation-ally, viola, the blog.

Life has been increasingly amazing! The new job is fun, laid back, and interesting, but I shall admit getting used to a structured schedule has been taking its toll. I guess I have just gotten so used to calling my own shots and doing what I want, when I want, that I forgot what it was like to have tangible boundaries and commitments.

I probably sound like a brat, haha, but its not a bad thing, just, different. Definitely taking some getting used to, and somehow draining of energy although I am sure its my ongoing cold that has something to do with that as well.

It is interesting to just sit and listen to help people open up about their lives, their relationships, their goals and how to accomplish them. Some people are harder to crack than others, some are just waiting for someone to ask so they can pout out their hearts.

Its much less invasive into my home life and has reminded me how much I enjoy helping people open up. The best thing about it is, when Aiden starts school I will be able to focus some efforts towards finishing school so that I can fulfill that passion in my preferred profession, but that's one step at a time.

Right now, the boys are top priority for us, and much more important than my want to indulge in higher education, is our need to focus all our time to their growth and development. They are only this small once in their lives, and I have the rest of my life to complete my education and start up my practice, I know God is with me every step of the way, allowing me to make baby steps.

Speaking of baby steps, I cant believe our little Aiden is already 4...and Carson shall be turning 2 in just a few short months...where has time gone?

Next week is CHRISTMAS! Its just insane! I am so behind with everything I wanted to get done, but I finally got Christmas cards out this past week, and we have secured the "big" items on the boys Christmas List.

Such as, the Step 2 Storybook Cottage (DELIVERED TODAY!!! And ALREADY set up in their 2nd playroom!), their new XBox 360 with upgraded harddrive, WiFi and tons of games, which will be in their room Christmas morning, Stinky the Garbage Truck (A MUST have I fell in love with!), a really large tool shop with hundreds of tools, and blah blah blah. LOL

Every year we go a little further overboard, but its awesome, I cant wait to see their little faces on Christmas morning!!!! So precious!

Speaking of presents...my sneaky, sexy, amazing husband ran out and bought me something without me knowing, and even wrapped it and put it under the tree! SO sweet, but its horribly mean! We always get something for US or for the HOUSE, and I have NO IDEA what to get him in return!

The sad truth is, he hates surprises, and he doesn't want me to buy something I know he would like without seeking his approval, because what if I get the wrong thing, yikes! LOL Why cant he be simple! :(

I decided while practical, I think I want to get him set up to take the classes and get his Concealed Handgun License, and of course, take him gun shopping.

How much more stereotypical can we get, hahaha. But its essentially the only thing I can think of that he will want and enjoy! So be it!

This time of year is the best, and each year just gets better! I couldn't feel more thankful to God for everything he has blessed us with over the years, most importantly each other.

Ive been reminded by strangers, now friendlies, that I glow when I talk about my husband, and while I always feel it inside, its wonderful to hear how that love radiates even to people that hardly know me.

Well, presents are wrapped, Christmas tree is glowing, and I cant WAIT for the boys to wake up and enjoy their first Christmas present! (Although, I would be lying if I didnt mention how we had been sneaking them gifts for weeks anyway...I know...we're horrible, haha)

I have to be up early to hit the stores and run some errands,then I think its off to visit with the Pinckards, and then to Prairie Lights, for some holiday fun, hot cocoa and santa!

God bless! <3

Friday, November 12, 2010

Busy, busy, busy...

Earlier today I read a status from a friend talking about how one night of babysitting gave her an entirely new appreciation for parents, especially stay at home moms, and thats always nice to hear!

The boys are the loves of my life, and thankfully, they are not as ill tempered or outrageous as I have seen other children get, but they are pretty full of energy and their growing independence is naturally beginning to show by the testing of boundaries. So yes, some days, after they fall asleep, there is a sigh of appreciation for the quiet. HaHa

"Yes, Carson, you can climb on the couch."
"No, Carson, you cannot however, lunge yourself from the couch, on to the coffee table in superhero like fashion."

I'm no longer a spring chicken, and each passing year I get a little less limber, I dont know how much longer I can jump in front of him with cat like reflexes and save him from his complete and utter defiance of fear! LOL

Aiden was a climber, but never a jumper! LOL Its hard to keep a straight face, because its so cute I cant help but smile and laugh! But you need to make sure he understands that if Mommy, Daddy, or the puppy isnt around to land on, some serious damage could potentially happen!

I love their independence, and I absolutely love to watch them growing as little people, perhaps with a little smaller dose of adrenaline though? Maybe? No?

They're going to skydive arent they. Or bungee jump. Or ride motorcycles. I can see myself now, my poor heart, I will be in a constant state of cardiac arrest before they leave elementary school, lol.

Lately, I am finding that my once happy eaters are now adapting their fathers selective stance on meals.

There was a time, I could put just about anything in front of them, and they would gobble it away! It made ensuring their daily intake of fruits and veggies were at an all time high!

But now, its, "noo", "I dont want corn", "I dont like that". But....but...its good for you!?!?! HaHa

I'm actually having to Google methods to incorporate vegetables into meals without them knowing!

For instance, last night I made mini meat loafs with creamed potatoes and corn.

I had to grate about 30 baby carrots and finely chop the onion, garlic and bellpepper into the mixture, so they wouldnt notice! LOL

I'm a chopper. For me, chopping veggies is relaxing, almost, a form of meditation, haha, silly as it sounds. But lately, I am having to dice and mince so much I am terrified at the logical mathematical statistics burdening themselves against my fingertip safety!

I mean, its only a matter of time with the amount of chopping I am doing before one of my fingers falls into the sink! LOL Its just practicality.

With that being said, I let dearest husband know, that a food processor is an acceptable anniversary gift for me. An apron too. He smiled at the thought that his little wife, eager and independent as she is, deep down is just a practical little house wifey with her families best interest in mind, always.

Back to the meal. Mini Meatloafs, an old family favorite. To top it off, Aiden decides that he no longer likes the adorable little meat loafs he used to LOVE! So, I had resort to deception again, and thinly slice the meatloaf into hot dog buns so he thought they were hot dogs.

Deceiving my children into eating vegetables, and to think, this time last year we had a heartfelt talk about the Santa Clause thing. We wanted to incorporate Christmas surprise morning, without the lies, because we just refused to be dishonest with our kids, if we lied about Santa, what else did we lie about?

Yet here I am, disguising vegetables into meats and meatloaf into a more processed food product that the kids seem to find irresistible. Shame on me! LOL

Its not like he was actually fooled, but the presentation gave him the gusto to try it, and of course, he liked it. Phew. One sneaky meal down, 145,458 to go!

Is this how its going to be from now on? I already put food coloring in their bottled water so they THINK its some crazy sugary drink!! LOL

God bless their Godfather, but when he gave them some kind of fruit punch that was basically 4lbs of sugar mixed with 1/2 cup water, they started asking for red juice, green juice, whatever.

Thankfully, Im a food coloring nut - hence my funfetti pancakes, green smashed potatoes, I do all I can to make eating healthy a fun thing for them. But now, I am taking those beautiful little drops of fun, and turning them into lies as I hand them blue colored filtered water....instead of punch. I try!

These boys sure do like to keep me on their toes, but thats fine with me, keeps me sharp! LOL

All this silliness just reminds me, that I am so very lucky to have these moments. Because not too long ago, I was such a workaholic that even though I came home to cook and clean, moments like that were few and far between because I was simply gone so much, and when I was home, my blackberry was glued to my hand while I answered emails, took conference calls, scheduled showings.

With that being said, this is going to be my last weekend of pure laziness before I begin a new endeavor, or two..or three.

We sat down to have a conversation about our upcoming plans for everything the fall months bring, especially this month. There is so much happening!

With Thanksgiving, Aiden's Birthday, our 5 year anniversary, Christmas, New Years, saving for our move, saving for a second car, my design work, the marketing contracts I have and now taking on another full time obligation to help expedite the saving process, I am not sure i will be getting much sleep in the near future! LOL

Thankfully, I have the most incredibly wonderful, supportive husband in the entire world, and he gave in to the idea of me working out of the house a little more so that I can concentrate my efforts and productivity rather than rushing around nap times and play times to get things done.

In the end, anything I bring in is 100% additional income, and can go towards savings, and make getting the boys the items on our Christmas List alot easier. Right now, its all manageable, but I really feel like God granted us this extra time and while doing a few projects here and there generally bring in a few extra shekels, it will be easier if I stepped back outside the comfort of home and threw myself into my old work ethic and mentality. If I want to have a nest egg set up before we move, I think its the best thing to do!

The only problem, is that I know me. Its not like I will transition from easy going, here and there fun projects into a full fledged 8 hour a day dedication. Noo...Im going to end up doing it all, haha. Its what I do, overextend myself, but somehow I always make it happen!

It all happened so fast though! We had this talk on Monday night, so Tuesday afternoon I started looking for something fun, simple, with regularity and a good salary, and found a few things that seemed intriguing. Sent out some resumes Tuesday night, got several responses by Wednesday morning, by 9am I had scheduled several interviews and when I came home Wednesday evening, I talked to Zane about the different options I had and I was excited and hoping the company I wanted to work for would extend an offer.

Before dinner I had my answer, and a phone call later They made an offer, I said yes, and I start on Monday. Phew, haha. It hadnt occurred to me until I was happy about the job I wanted making me an offer, but I havent had to interview for a job since 2007! LOL

I have met with prospective clients, to decide if I want to take on a project, but I havent been in a situation where I needed to look to an employer asking to hire me. Its been more, them trying to secure my services, and me deciding if it was something I would be interested in. Its a funny thing!

Its going to be regulated hours, lunch breaks, a set schedule, haha. I havent had that in years, but honestly, having less pressure on myself to handle everything is something I am looking forward to! Instead of putting myself back into a market where I am responsible for Steps 1-10, I can focus on one task at hand, do it well, and come home without my phone ringing through the late night incessantly or pulling me away from my boys.

Its really a breath of fresh air, and I am very excited and eager for this next week! And at the end of the week, I have something guaranteed to offer my family in lieu of my absence, and thats what its all about.

It really does seem like its going to be really fun, and its right up my alley of expertise, but better. Who gets to peddle love and get paid for it? I do! :)

God bless and wish us luck! <3

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Welcome November!

Someone has been mighty lazy. Me. I mean me. LOL

Well, Halloween was great! We took the boys to Halloween Night at the Dallas Zoo and it was no where near overcrowded, but I was so happy to see a good turnout! They had some incredible things set up, puppet shows, dance shows, trick or treating stations where they each handed out HUGE handfulls of candy!

I never would have thought we would have left the Zoo of all places with like 10lbs of candy, but we did! LOL

The bounce houses of course drew the boys attention, and they loooved the little puppet show, but I think the neatest thing was the newly opened African Savannah.

They have Giraffe feeding, and its just incredible to see these animals at eye level with you, walking up to you face to face and realizing how HUGE their heads are!

The lions enclosure was now glassed and they were pawing at the people watching on. Funniest thing ever, was we put Carson down so he could walk up to the glass and immediately the lioness locked her eyes on him, being the smallest thing in the crowd, lowered her body, wiggled her bottom, then pounced!

Whether she wanted to eat him, or play with him, I dont know, but watching it from my perspective, with only an inch or two of glass separating them, it was incredible!

We are avid animal lovers and looove the zoo, sanctuaries, drive through safaris, you name it, if its a chance to interact with animals, we are there! They did a great job though, go Dallas Zoo!

Not a whole lot more has happened this week, we have been enjoying some more down time, I have been able to get a few more shipments out and I have a few more requests I need to work on as soon as the boys let me cut away for a moment!

I'm getting REALLY excited about this month! I cant believe our tiny little sweet baby boy is going to be 4 this year!!! In just a few weeks!! INSANE!

Hes such a big boy, so bright, so sweet, so sociable, and smart. We are so, so proud of him! Since his birthday is so near Thanksgiving we are still tossing around ideas for his birthday - daddy will be at guard duty all weekend, so it will have to be the weekend after, which is after Thanksgiving and after our anniversary.

Maybe we can just do something in the middle of the week? I dont know, haha, we will figure something out. Last year we had a little shindig at our house, but I dont think we are going that route this year.

We will see, there are a few places I am thinking about that may be fun - Nickle Mania, Planet Pizza, and maybe a few other things. We will see, either way I need to get the ball rolling because I need to design and send out invitations, get the cake ordered, and make some goodie bags!

I love kids birthdays! <3<3<3<3<3<3

Anyway, enough about that, this weekend my baby brother is coming to visit for a few days, yay! I was just thinking how it had been so long since the boys had a picture of them and their uncle!

Then next week I am busy trying to get some work done, push through some designs and I am considering designing and offering some Holiday Greeting Cards also! But...I think I need to finilize maybe 10 designs and keep it simple. Lets see how that goes, if it goes well, then I can work on some designs for invitations, thank you cards, and some other graphic work!

I really just need to up my anty and try to stay busy. With that in mind, I think I want a redesign on my website, its informational and pretty, but I would it to be more friendly and casual.

Making myself busy. :)

Well, hope all is well with everyone in the world, praying this holiday season brings family together and some great memories!

God bless! <3

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Love. Joy. Peace. All thanks to God.

For some strange reason, I have been so tired all of a sudden.

Daddy has been really excited since he enrolled in some video game netflix type monthly thing, bringing new games to our doorstep at a whim for him to play with and return as he pleases. Its great...aside from the sudden change in his schedule from being a normal human being to being a vampire, asleep while the sun is up and wide awake during the late night! LOL

Silly daddy. I need to get him back on schedule, because he doesnt realize how much he has 100% complete influence over our entire household! And its making me drowsy and zombie like myself. Boo. I'm such a morning person, if I have too much sleep, or sleep too late, I am quite literally miserable!

Oh, to return to the days of waking up at a bright and fresh 5am. Just the THOUGHT brings a gleeful smile to my face!

Anyway, on Tuesday Julia came over and we took the little Ardlings to the Flower Mound Pumpkin Patch! It was our first year going and we had so much fun! It ended up being a little warmer than I thought, so we all got a little red in the face, but the boys had a blast running around the pumpkins, the mazes, the bounce houses and slides and having a nice cold treat!

I failed miserably at being able to capture a great sit down picture of the two of them together, even ONCE, and Aiden was pretty much about to go all fire crotch on me with the constant flashing of my camera in his face. LOL

I cant help it! I'm a licensed mom-a-razzi! Its my divine right for giving them life, being able to capture as many moments frozen in time of their youth as I can possibly get away with! Right? LOL

I did get a few cute ones though, take a peek!







I loved my widdle guys!

Anyway, its been an excessively busy and wonderful week! So many new things, trying to get everything planned and prepared for our move to Ft. Sam Houston, I think we are projecting to head out there early 2011, maybe Jan-March, but alot of factors will determine how that goes and how soon.

We shall see!

Well, gotta run, maybe get busy a little bit, and pour over Christmas Catalogs for the kiddos!!! YAY!!!

God Bless & Goodnight!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Who loves Mondays? I LOVE MONDAYS!

Why, exactly, am I so fond of Mondays? I cant say really. But the fresh start of a new week, even if I dont have anything particular lined up to occupy my mind just brings on this rush of energy and excitement for a brand new week!

Today was a fairly typical day since daddy came home - I was up early, unloading the dishwasher, starting on laundry, sweeping and mopping, while all my wonderful boys slept soundly in their beds.

Too soundly. Too late in fact - I really need to break them soon of this business of sleeping in until after 9-10am. I mean seriously, I know one day they will be teenagers that sleep through morning straight up until dinner time, or so I am told, but I cant have that happening now!

Honestly speaking, I miss the early mornings with my hubby - 5am, coffee and a nice quiet house, just the two of us to share our thoughts, talk about our dreams, current events, politics, religion, what ever form of adult conversation we could muster before the world of Blues Clues and Yo Gabba Gabba ran through our hallways.

Lately though, hes adapted this new philosophy of over relaxation, haha. Not that I mind taking some time to just sit back and sleep in, but day after day of it is too much for me! I'm just a bit more of a morning person, and I need my mornings and my routine to ensure energy and a good balance for my day!

I cant complain though, I let him sleep as long as he wants, poor daddy. Before we know it we will be headed to Ft. Sam Houston so he can begin his new MOS training, and he will have his head married to books for quite some time.

Fingers crossed we can secure all the additional training and schooling he is hoping to get added on to his contract, but only time will tell. Either way, I know he will be able to make the cut. Essentially, if its not in his contract, he just has to ensure he makes the top 10% of his class to apply for specialized schools and training, and I know thats well within his realm of ability. Well within.

Since we are on topic, I am really trying to occupy my spare time to complete all the levels of training for military spouses offered at MyArmyOneSource.com. Overall, I am really looking forward to when we get near post and I can apply for volunteer opportunities, with FRG hopefully, but I know I will need to work my way up through some leadership courses and become completely acclimated with military lifestyle before I can expect them to allow me an opportunity to help advocate new families.

So far so good, completed the EFMP Program Overview - such great information and something I am really proud to see the military doing for families with exceptional dependents. I love it. Really, I do.

My love for the military though, and everything about it, is more than just an idle infatuation. I never knew we would find such a wonderful community and a home with the ARNG. If we had known, no doubt we would have enlisted sooner, but as with everything, God has a plan and things happen as they are meant to.

Right now the closest installation is on the other side of Ft. Worth, and its a Naval Air Base at that. While its still up in the air whether or not we can get the the approval for housing on post when we head there for AIT or not is still in the air, but the sooner we know, the better we can make arrangements. As of right now he doesn't report until next Spring, so we have plenty of time to make our way comfortably, thank goodness.

With the waiting list for housing being a few months, if I can get us on it with his orders, that would be great! The housing market in San Antonio is a little different, and I am just afraid of landing my little family in too rough of an area due to a lack of experience with the market.

Although, I do have some contacts there, I might have to make some phone calls and see if they can keep an eye out for some good deals. One thing at a time Heather, one thing at a time.

In the meantime, I am keeping busy! Military moms and wives are keeping me busy with design work! I did a few pieces today and I have several on backorder!



I would say that tomorrow I can tackle my growing backorder list - but neigh, I cannot. Because tomorrow, we head to the Flower Mound Pumpkin Patch! YAY!

Finally!! Last weekend while Zane was at RSP, Julia was supposed to come over so we could take the boys together, well she stands me up then calls at 3pm, LOL. So we are going this week, puts a little pressure on me to get the Halloween cards done and mailed off, but at least I can get it done! This year we WILL have Halloween holiday cards darn it!

Speaking of Halloween, we had planned on spending the day with Zane's grandparents, but it looks like they will be out of town, sadly. Although, with every closed window comes a door of opportunities! And I am extremely excited that we decided to take the boys to the Halloween Night at the Dallas Zoo! YAY! It will be so much fun, and it looks like both George and Julia will be joining us as we take the boys trick or treating this year!

Cant wait to be honest! Have I ever mentioned how much I LOVE the fall!

Anyway, enough excitement for me, I think its time to call it a night so I can have my fingers ready for full on mommarazzi! The boys, and pumpkins, and hay, and petting zoo, cmon. I might just come home with carpel tunnel.

Have a great night dear friends and loved ones. Whomever you are.

God Bless!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Autumn is officially HERE!


This time of year brings such joy to my heart. The changing of the seasons, that wonderful chill in the air that warrants a nice warm and cozy scarf and gorgeous wintery boots, even in Texas.

Each year, especially as our boys get older, the coming of the months filled with holidays and festivities bring such excitement and anticipation in our home! From carving pumpkins, to turkey dinners to Christmas morning, the wonderful memories to come are already making their mark!

Today, a friend shared a sad story with me, about a good friend of hers losing her father unexpectedly, and it reminds me that each day, hour and moment is priceless, and once they pass, there is no going back. There is no chance to waste your times with promises of family time - the time is NOW.

Zane & I have for years lived each day, loving eachother as if it were our last day, making the most of every minute God has blessed us with eachother, and we hope that one day our boys can grow up with this same type of mentality to carry on with their children.

Making and cherishing our family memories becomes increasingly important for me, and setting traditions that we hope to continue year after year I pray will set the stage for the joy of the season.

This year, the boys and I worked on some adorable little pumpkins - our first batch of pumpkins carved with more than geometric simplicity. If I had to say so myself, they were QUITE adorable!



Is it a little sad that I get excited that in the next few years, my pumpkin carving skills shall through experience reach a level of perfection to make all our neighbors envious? We can dream, cant we.

Speaking of neighbors - it looks like we shall continue to call our home, home, for now, at least for a few more months before Zane heads off to his new training station.

Our appreciation for the time God has given us to spend together after the months apart, and before the many months ahead of us where daddy will be busy with working, training and studying, but I cant help but be excited and anxious for the day to come when we can pack up our home and move on to the next phase in our lives!

God has his plan, and we trust in it 110%!

Well, its about that time I get settled into bed with my wonderful husband and prepare for another wonderful week!

God bless!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Blogging

I remember the days where blogging was like brushing my teeth, or waking up, or breathing, it just, was something that happened daily without thought or effort simply because I didnt feel complete if I wasnt sending out my mundane thoughts into cyberspace for someone else to mull over during their boredom.

But these days, I am so busy just enjoying life, that I dont take the time to write about it. Still debating on whether or not thats a good or great thing. HaHa

Well, lots happening - my fun little hobby of using my spare time doing design work that I used to incorporate into sales for real estate, and instead spinning some creativity into commemorative designs and prints meant to honor military service members and the unique bond shared between their loved ones.

It tickles me to think that something I made, designed, poured over for a period of time hoping to capture the love and pride a patron feels for their soldier, and knowing it will soon grace the walls, tables, the homes of these incredible friends, who capture my heart and inspire me daily.

I'm so happy that the work I have been doing is well received, and I am honored to be taking a part in their tributes.

I sent out my first few shipments yesterday, and I will be heading to the post office, wading through the water, to send out a few more today!

God has been so wonderful to us, and I am so happy that he has given us this time to enjoy together before the next phase of training commences for Zane. I am so, so, so proud of him and I pray that the right opening is available for him to pursue, I know his brilliance and shine will definitely be an asset to various fields, and while we wait, God has more than taken our hands and reminded us to have faith and all will be taken care of.

Well, if you are curious about my work, visit me on the web at:

www.ArdDesignStudio.com

I offer tributes generally for servicemembers, but have done some others as well for birthdays, pet tributes and other honorable mentions.

If anyone is reading, have an incredible day, filled with God's blessings!

Ciao!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

My life after 28 years and 364 days

Tomorrow is my birthday, and its both exciting and bitter sweet at the same time.

We have had the most incredible morning! I fell asleep at midnight and woke up around 3:30am, and since my love was up, we went off to bed but ended up talking and talking and talking and talking and finally at 5:30am we just decided there was no point in trying to sleep and just got up, made some coffee and have enjoyed our mornings, just like we always used to.

Had a great breakfast together, watched the sun rise and fill the sky with Gods magical light, and talk about everything we have coming this great month of September that begins with my birthday.

Its so wonderful to have him home, God knows I love my husband more than should be humanly possible, and I am so, so grateful that he came home to me the exact same person as he left.

I have seen and heard very different stories from other people, stories about the changes they see in their spouses and partners coming home from basic training. With the things they went through, for many it was life changing and unlike anything they were faced with before that moment, but for my dear hubby, it was just a job, something he took pride in yes, but overall, it was just something he had to get through so he could come home with his family again and prepare to move forward to keep his commitment and continue forward on our path.

I'm so grateful that the moment I picked him up from the airport, it was just, big smiles and hugs and excitement! There was no "period of adjustment", no "getting used to him being home", no "getting reacquainted" - it was just back in sync, back to holding hands and talking and just being US all over again. How I missed that.

I really wish and pray it was the same for everyone, and I know each and every soldier handles the experience very differently, I have just met so many incredible women who are so dedicated to their soldiers and I cant even imagine what it would be like to feel like I had a stranger come home to me.

Through my research and reading, I have definitely found that its fairly common after a separation for there to be a period of adjustment, whether it be deployment or training, or any other means of separation. I definitely understand that at some point in our lives there may be a time when we are faced with that, then again, people will argue that its normal for couples to argue all the time, and fight through their differences, and here we are almost 5 years later and we dont fight, ever.

In fact, I could count the number of disagreements we have had on one hand, both times I was pregnant and a little irrational and sensitive and we laughed the second I realized I was getting upset about something trivial - because its so uncharacteristic of who I am. Ohh, how your hormones can try and get the best of you! LOL

Either way though, thats the closest we have ever come to a "fight" - it just doesnt happen in our household. We're both rational adults, and if there is anything we ever have a difference of opinion we compromise quite well.

There are just so many things out there that are bigger and more important than other people, and to top it off, when it comes to one another, both of us are quite selfless. Thats probably our best feature, we each place one another on a pedestal of untouchable greatness and never, ever place our own needs above that of our partners, so in turn, we always end up doing what we want, when we want, we just do it for eachother, rather than ourselves. <3

He's always been incredible, and in my eyes, I cant imagine the possibility of improving on perfection incarnate, but I know as much as we had an undying affection for eachother, more than ever, our life priorities and our choices are all that more supported and validated.

Above all, our motto has always been that as long as we are together, nothing else matters, and boy does that still hold true, more than ever.

The only changes were that before he left, we dont understand how we ever entertained a service that would leave us here, and him somewhere else, even if only for certain periods of time.

More than ever, he is adamant that above all else, he wants to make sure that wherever this army life of ours leads us, that we go together as a family.

We are happy with the changes and so optimistic about what this will mean for our boys, for our family and for our future.

God has most definitely blessed me with a wonderful, wonderful life. An extraordinary husband, who is loving and supportive, who tells me I'm beautiful every hour, who tells me he loves me more than anything, every few minutes, who would and will do anything for us, for our family, to ensure our safety and unity, and he has blessed me with two gorgeous little boys so brilliant and sweet who just fill our lives and our hearts!

I'm so very thankful everyday of my life for all we have, for every spare minute we are granted together, so we can prepare for the time apart.

My husband, and our boys, are my life. Period.

There may be a time in my life, where I need "me" time, or want to do something selfish, but right now, I cant even imagine that. What makes me happy, is seeing them happy, undeniably.

In this day and age, with so many people, women especially, clawing for their own personal identities, fighting to do a mans job and do it better, wanting to be looked upon as domineering forces to be reckoned with, I say, do what makes you happy, but dont be so wrapped up in yourself, in your own selfish needs, that you forget to give a part of yourself to others.

After all, its what God wants us to do, its what he sent his son to teach us. To be the giver, not the taker. To live humbly so you can give to others. To cloth and shelter our brothers and sisters in humanity, before ourselves.

It is only in loving others that we truly love ourselves, and only in finding a true sense of compassion, can we feel God illuminating in every breath we take.

I'm about to enter into the last year of my 20's, and I am rejoicing in all that I have around me, all that God has blessed me with, and all that we have to look forward to!

If the rest of my years are anything like the last wonderful years of my life, I'm on track to have the happiest life ever lived since the beginning of mankind! And I pray everyone is as blessed in their fortunes as we are!

<3

Friday, August 20, 2010

So blessed!

So today was the day of A/2-19th's graduation, and the guys looked so great!

A little bittersweet, because I was looking forward to this day for so long, but it doesnt matter because my darling husband got to come home to me early!

Working on a medical reclass, he's doing great but his knee's arent in the best of shape so he had to drop Airborne as well as his follow on training, and since that would have made him an infantryman and their drills and training is just as physically intense, the doctor suggested a medical reclass so it looks like hes going to be a POG. LOL

Which is great, as much as I know he would have loved combat, his main drive is to be able to serve his country in whatever capacity he is suitable for, so right now its just a waiting game. He reported the morning after he returned to get all the paperwork rolling but these things take time, something that with me being a bit neurotic about planning and needing to have every detail sorted out is usually quite the frustrating scenerio, but I have acclimated myself fairly well to military life and understanding that things happen in their own time and we have to respect that.

For now it looks like I have my dear hubby home for a little over a month (YAY!) before he reports and meets with everyone in his unit that needs to sign off, so fingers crossed we can be looking at finding out some available MOSs as well as determine where we go for his AIT before his birthday!

As always, its all in God's hands - we had been told it would be about 30-45 days for everything to happen, however I had a feeling it may take a little longer.

My new motto: Always hoping, never expecting.

Nothing wrong with throwing prayer out there and hoping for the preferred situation, however if it doesnt pan out, thats still okay, and in the end, however it works itself out is just fine with me, because thats how it was meant to happen. LOL

You've gotta learn to adjust to change, otherwise you just wont make it! :)

When I reflect on the last few months since Zane left in May, all the waiting, and the hoping and praying, I feel so blessed because it really showed me how capable our love was of growing, even more than we thought possible.

We have always been so incredibly close, and always shared this unnatural bond that seemed out of this world and without limitations. A love so strong, and so wonderful, that we both thought on every level that there was no possible way that we could feel MORE for eachother than we already had, that we had already somehow reached maximum capacity of affection awarded to us by God.

Boy were we wrong! How can you love someone infinitely and then grow to love them even more? Honestly, I couldnt explain it to you, there is no way to explain how much being away from the person who makes you complete, being unable to talk to them when you want to, touch them when you want to, kiss them when you want to, can really make all the moments that you share seem all that much more precious.

And just when you think that its been so long since youve been held that its unbearable, and that maybe its possible you are romanticizing how incredible that person is, you get to see them again and without a shadow of a doubt, you werent romanticizing a damn thing, because they are every bit as incredible as you build them up in your heart to be, and then some.

I know our future will hold times where we will face distances, but I know now that we are strong enough to endure just about anything, as long as we are together.

I know everyone is supposed to think this, but I really DO have the most incredible husband in the entire world over, and I couldnt be happier or prouder to be his wife and the mother of his children.

We are looking forward to the changes to come, and the opportunities at our doorstep, and I pray that God will grant us the patience to wade through the waiting and the paperwork with grace so that we can find our home at the end of that tunnel.

Off to play with our little Ardlings and prepare some lunch before daddy gets back from the store!

Oh how I love having him home again!

Ciao! <3

Monday, May 24, 2010

Delightful Day, Dissapointing News

People are disappointing sometimes - but you know, you cant let it get to you.

I've said it all my life, and I will continue to say it, I will never, EVER, let another persons failure to be a decent human being allow me to lose faith in all mankind.

I will always adhere to Gods compassionate guidelines and presume that no matter how often a person can disappoint us, I will always pray for their ability to blossom and flourish.

Sometimes its just a little sad to watch people condemn themselves to such a shallow existence.

I pray that those that are lost find illumination and content at some point in their lives, I just cant continue to subject myself and my family to their company.

It has been a delightful and blessed day - I feel like God is shouting at me from a mountain top what he wants me to do, and this sad, yet not unexpected news, is only showing me that path all the more.

My priorities will always be family - my husband, my children, our little family mean more to me than anything in the world can ever mean. If someone is unable to understand that, and wants to hold me under scrutiny and question my dedication to other areas in my life, well, then I feel sad they dont hold the same level of love for their family as I do for mine.

I'm done being a sacrificial lamb.
I'm done exhausting myself for others with no compensation.
I'm done constantly putting my means of making a living before actually living.

This day, I was fooled multiple times by the same source, and I say no more. With Zane gone, I now have the strength to stand up for myself, rather than come home and find comfort in his arms.

Its a new day, a new beginning, and now an entirely new chapter in my life is ready to open.

Thank you God, for your blessings, for your love, for my family and friends, and for gifting us a secure and solid foundation this day.

I couldn't be happier! <3

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Things to look forward to.

Well, yesterday marked Zane's first official week in basic training, even though the last I physically held him was May 3rd.

Haven't received any correspondence, and I am sure glad that not only he told me, but that various other family members advised that during the first phase of training (Red Phase) we can expect ZERO communication from our soldiers.

I keep telling myself this, and I know it to be probable and more than likely, however that doesn't stop me from checking the mail 30 times a day, even after the mailman has brought the mail. Or keeping my phone super glued to my side AT ALL TIMES.

You never know, and the feeling of missing a phone call when you know how sparse they are, is like nothing I can describe that makes you sick in the pit of your stomach.

One thing that has been so helpful is that now I can actually mail his letters - although no longer seeing the stack of mail that we write him pile up in the Daddy Mail Slot somehow makes me feel a little sad.

From what I am hearing, its more than likely that their mail is being held for about a week or two, so he may not get any letters from us until close to the end of his Red Phase. This makes me a little sad because I know this time is crucial, more than ever, to hear our words of encouragement, but its all a process and hes not meant to at this time.

Either way, I hope he knows how much we love him and think about him every single day.

It looks like his little sisters will be in town mid-June. Its been over a year since Ive talked to Alli - the whole situation with...yeah. It was awkward and uncomfortable and we were rather upset about it, but Im not one to hold a grudge, and I do miss the girls. Plus, with Daddy gone, I think more than ever the boys need family around, and the girls have never met Carson! So, I did push it all aside and am looking forward to hanging out with them in a few weeks.

Knowing what I know now, I have to admit that alot of what she was saying at the time makes more sense and there are most definitely always two sides to each story. Regardless of what happened, that was a long time ago, and Im not going to penalize the girls or boys. Besides, Zane was the one who was really upset, and hes not here right now to scold me. :)

I think in the end he will be happy I agreed to take the boys for a visit with their aunties.

Then in July, fingers crossed, Zane will earn/keep his midcycle pass so that I can go visit and spend some time with him. Its a 36 hour pass on average, although I have heard some people say their spouses had less and more (6 hours - 52 hours is what Ive heard!)

I cant wait to see him, and Im excited about checking out the cabins for us all when we head up for Family Day & Graduation in August!!

When I get a chance I really need to see if when he heads to Bragg its considered a PCS or just another training post, because we really need to figure the housing situation out and determine which move is the best for us as a family.

Another thing to place on my to-do list!

Well, the boys are ready to get up from snack time, so I too must go.

Happy Saturday!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Happy Tuesday!

So yesterday was insane, too much running around for me and the boys!

I keep meaning to come update my days, but at the end of the day, if I really want to outlet, what I end up doing instead is writing a letter to my baby, which really is a rather good thing I would think. :)

But after my 3-4 page letter, my hand is tired from all the handwriting that i am no longer accustomed to since I am a child of the digital era. My fingers can be clocked at around 120 wmp, but I sure hand write like a 4th grader who doesnt quite remember to hold a pen.

Its like, wait, I know how to do my signature...I have to write more than that? LOL

Things are going great, Georgie came over last night and had dinner with me, some shrimp scampi and white wine, and we watched the Monday line up - House, Nurse Jackie, US of Tara & Tori & Dean HSH.

My first friend over since Zane left, and it was so nice to have someone here who wasn't under the age 5. We got to have grown up conversation, and it just felt nice to have someone else playing with the kiddos. As incredible as they are, sometimes they get in these moods where they both are craving attention, and at times it makes it difficult to be able to cuddle both at the same time. LOL

Well, off to have another adventurous day with my boys!

Cant wait to get the letter from the CO so I know where to start mailing these letters we have all piled up! :)

Love you daddy, miss you dearly, cant wait to see you!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Just keep swimming...

I know some of my dear sweet friends get to hear this all the time, but now I have the privilege of saying it to myself. I was right.

Those first few days of repeated communication really spoiled me - and I knew at the time it wouldnt be commonplace, and I told myself this, but I guess I just didnt want to hear it. No word since Wednesday - this is the longest EVER we have gone without some kind of communication and its driving me insane. I keep talking to God, because being home with the kids means turning inward is my only adult level conversation, LOL.

The boys are doing great, Carson is starting to notice that daddy isnt home, and hasnt been here in a lot longer than usual. He keeps going to look for him I think - sometimes he just wanders from room to room looking in, and then he will point at a pic of Zane and say "daddy!".

Aiden and I have been working on him understanding exactly what it is daddy is off doing. At first, we told Aiden he would be going to work for a while, which is great, but I thought it was important he understood daddys role as a soldier - and thought up a few ideas that would help him grasp what daddy is going through.

Since Zane already had him used to watching the Military Channel all the time, I decided to get him focused, we turned to the internet. The military websites have so many videos showing training and basic, so we had an oppertunity to see the soldiers, and understand what they were doing. Then we decided to pick out 5 simple excercises and learn them, so Aiden could feel like he was working out, just like daddy!

I wasnt sure how much it would really sink in - until we watched Monsters vs Aliens just a few hours later. We were watching the movie, and then as the little army comes out to stand defense against the alien probe, Aiden beams up with excitement, and points at the tv and says:

"Mommy!! Mommy!!! Look - its army men just like daddy!!"

It was my daily moment.

Yes, Ive been doing my best to stay strong - I am a big believer in people and animals feeding off the energy of others, so I cant feel bad, or sad, because if I do the kids will pick up on it and react accordingly, so I stay strong and positive all day, distracting myself and them, talking about Daddy all the time, but trying not to really think about how long it will be until I will get to hold him a day.

Except...once a day (at least) some minor, small, little thing will happen. Something unpredictable, unexpected, and it will remind me of him and I will get a lump in my throat, a pain in my chest and uncontrollable tears that well up so much I have to physically stop because I no longer have vision.

The very first one was our bed. I dropped him off Monday night, and that night after I brought the boys home, I was so exhausted I ended up passing out on the couch. Something I knew would happen, the couch makes me feel like someone is next to me, it was inevitable.

On Tuesday night, at the end of the day when I went to go to bed, I paused and remembered - Monday morning when I was making the bed as i do everyday (by myself) he walked in the room and quietly started to help me. Help me tuck the sheets, fluff and arrange the pillows. I burst out crying - I couldnt even start to unmake the bed and get in it, and it was too much for me, so I headed back to the couch, and didnt get much sleep.

On Wednesday night, as I was gathering the trash to take out - this being the first time I was taking out trash by myself - I pulled the trash bags out of the pantry, and I saw on the ground, crumbled pieces of wax paper and duct tape.

You're probably thinking, WHAT?!?! A few days before, we had gotten Aiden a little policeman coupe car - and Zane wanted to paint it camo. So he did, it took him 2 days to do it, and he spread out on the front porch cutting out patterns, overlaying it, using the wax paper for ease and placement. It was so important to him that he finish this project for Aiden before he left, and at the time, I guess it didnt occur to me how special that would be.

Aiden plays with that car all day now, Carson rides in it with him, both in and outside, and he remembers how him and daddy painted it together, put on the pieces of blue tape to paint over patterns, and he talks about it all the time. Yeah, wax paper made me cry.

Last night I had decided to do some late night laundry, because I couldnt quite sleep, and as I started pulling hangers from the closet, I noticed it looked like some shirts were hanging low on his side - when I looked closer I saw he had tiered the hangers 3 at a time and pushed them over to make more room. And I remembered he was telling me how he was going to fold some clothes, how had i not noticed until now. He had folded all of his clothes out of the drawers, and off the hangers to give me more room in the closet. So that I wouldnt have to use the extra closet in Carsons room to store off season clothes. So sweet and practical, just the way I like it.

Its been the little things, I'm doing my best - today I joined at least 5 different communities online for spouses, families and friends of military service members. It really helped alot talking to other women in my position, especially those with small children.

And I got so excited hearing how there were other wives whose husband arrived at post with my hubby, who were all eager to share info, and talk about what we were all facing. It made me feel a lot less lonely. I'm so excited for him, and his experience, the challenges he will face and overcome. We couldnt be any prouder, hes our hero. Our sons already thought he was a superhero.

Today was the first day we stayed in all day, but it made the day kind of fly in an awkward way - tomorrow I need to run to the store and pick up some more stamps, stationary, cards, ink for the printer, construction paper and maybe paint for the boys. We wrote daddy some letters today and drew him some pictures.

I made a Daddy Mail box, near the Daddy Wall, where I upholstered a college of fabric into a bulletin board - for letters and cards we get from Daddy, pictures, and anything else he can send.

I cant send him anything until I get a letter from him or his CO with the address, but as soon as we can I will have a whole box full of stuff to send I hope!

Off to bed to try and get some rest, sending my dear sweet husband all my love and prayers for the strength to succeed and the motivation to keep going when it feels like you cant go on anymore.

Love you Zane, more than words could ever express.

G'Night <3

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes

I'm sitting here enjoying my very first dinner for one.

I decided to make some Shrimp Scampi (incredible by the way) and pair it with a bottle of Sweet Moscato. When I say bottle, I wont pretend that I didn't pour a 2nd, or even 3rd glass. The recipe called for a white wine...what? LOL

We have been slowly working towards his enlistment the last few months, and even though we have thoroughly prepared for it mentally - I suppose no practice or preparation can really amount to the actual feeling of knowing your spouse, the person who keeps you warm at night, who helps you bring in the groceries, who you share banter with in the middle of the night is not home to snuggle with when you want them to be.

I couldn't be prouder though - hes always been a soldier, just waiting for his enlistment I suppose. I am so proud of him, the man hes becoming that I always knew he was. Our boys are so lucky to have such an amazing father, I hope they really appreciate it when they get older.

Prayers go out for my beloved, and I hope he triumphs through all the challenges he is about to face so that he can pursue the path he wishes to follow.

Right now, even though the spot where he normally sleeps will remain cold, and the place at the table where he dines with me is empty, I feel like the luckiest woman alive to know that such a great man holds his place in my heart.

Follow Me