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Happy New Year!

I’m still here! After a four month hiatus, I’m hoping to get back into posting somewhat regularly on here.

It’s been a very busy last four months. A move overseas, welcomed my husband back from deployment, another move within the states, closing on a new home, a sibling’s wedding in Maryland, ran in my first trail race in Northern Michigan, training for another race here in Mississippi, celebrated Christmas in Michigan‚Ķ. it’s been quite the whirlwind. After our three shipments come to our new home next week, I am hoping life will slow down a bit more and allow me to settle back into some normalcy.

My year anniversary of this blog is next month already. I have some decisions to make concerning the blog and will fill you in on any new or interested news within a few weeks. ūüôā

I’ll be back next week to talk about a 10 week fitness challenge that Adam and I are doing with some friends.

Have a wonderful week!

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Top 10 Reasons You Know You’ve Lived in Japan For a While

With our up-coming move back to the States, I’ve been reminiscing about our time here in Japan. Will I miss it? Yes. Would I want to come back here again? Probably not. It’s been a pretty long and difficult time for our family while living here – a lot of it due to Adam being gone so much and my health issues I dealt with while no family is around to help. (Thankfully, I’ve got military family though that stepped up in many amazing ways! You ladies are¬†awesome!)¬†So, with the past three years in mind, here is a quick list I put together.

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You know you’ve lived in Japan for a while when…

-looking online for potential houses to purchase back in the States, you find a really nice 2,700 sq. ft. house and your first thought is, “Bummer, I probably wouldn’t be able to vacuum the entire house while plugged into one outlet.”¬†

-your two-year-old thinks trains are the main way of transportation. (She will be sorely disappointed when we move to Mississippi!)

-on said train, you feel the need to shush your child when they talk at a normal decibel level because it’s usually quiet enough to hear a pin drop.

-a store is 7 miles away and you plan for it to take an hour to get there. And are pleasantly surprised when you make it in that amount of time.

-shopping at a local store, you can leave your stroller with your purse sitting outside and are confident it will all be there when you exit twenty minutes later.

-you know all the good online stores that ship and how quickly it will take to get here.

-you think driving on the left side of the road is completely normal and it scares you to think about driving back on the right side.

-you always take along a full meal for your children when going out to eat because you don’t know what exactly you will get when you order.

-you find yourself bowing your head to everyone you pass, including fellow Americans.

-driving down the road, you see a car and think, “wow, that’s a nice looking car!”¬†and then realize it’s a Toyota Prius.

 

 

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Soaking It All In

The dread of another deployment is looming.

The bags are starting to be packed. Wills and powers of attorney renewed. His favorite foods are  slowly disappearing from our pantry shelves. The simple things of everyday life are gradually changing.

I’m not a newbie when it comes to deployment. I’ve put in my time from being away from my husband. Deployments will never get easier as each one comes up, but my ability to handle and process it – the emotional and mental toll – just might be getting a little better each time.

I notice my bedtime shifts back later and later in the closing weeks before they leave, trying to hold on to and enjoy these last snippets of time together before he’s gone again. I’ve started to plan things, especially those first few weeks after his departure, to keep busy. I find busy-ness is the key to a successful shift of Daddy home then Daddy gone.

I’ve begun talking with our two-year-old, trying to prep her for the separation from the most important man in her life – her Daddy, buddy, and best friend. We’ve been watching Talk, Listen, Connect¬†more recently. She’s a strong little girl and I know this time away from Daddy will only strengthen my relationship with her. Thankfully, her sister Scarlett is only a year old and will most likely not be affected in the same way, as she can’t really understand time and the concept of separation just yet.

While this deployment will be similar in that Adam is gone from us, it also brings a bit of excitement for us seeing as it’s our last one before we move onto our shore tour. We simply cannot wait to move from Japan to the land we know as home, where Adam will be around much more and get to experience the true every day life for a few years.

So, if I’m not around as much over the next little while, you understand why. We’re soaking up and enjoying as much time as we can with my husband, our little girls’ Daddy, before that good-bye comes again much too soon.

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Our homecoming last November. We are already counting down the days to this years’ homecoming!

 

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We’re moving!!

I guess I never officially announced on here where we are moving to next!¬†Adam, the girls, and I are will be moving to….

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MISSISSIPPI! 

We will be moving this coming fall and are getting really excited to:

1) live in the US of A again

2) live in a new area we’ve never lived before

3) buy another house (Lord willing)

4) live only 13 hours from family!

While we would love to be living near our many friends in Virginia Beach, there are a lot of positives that will come from living in Meridian, MS. So, if any of you lovely readers need a little time to recharge from the daily grind and are looking for some pretty nice weather (especially January-March), come on down! But please – wait until we are moved in a little before coming. We want to make sure we’re good hosts and you aren’t sleeping among boxes. ūüôā

 

 

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Happy Memorial Day

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Today, we honor those men and women who died while serving the United States of America.

When I was younger, this holiday was a nice time to relax by the lake, enjoy some yummy food, and get off from school or work. The weather is usually near perfect at the end of May and we would spend as much time out in the sun as possible and maybe watch a local parade go by.

Now, after marrying a United States Navy pilot, Memorial Day has taken on a new meaning for me. I have seen first hand the sacrifices made by so many willing people to keep our country free. My husband has spent over five years of his life sacrificing time, energy, and service. Thousands and thousands of others also do the same for our country.

Our free country.

And the reason we are free? Because of those men and women who have fought hard to keep it that way. Those who have sacrificed more than just family time or settling down in one place for more than a few years: they have sacrificed their very own lives so that we can remain free.

Because of what they did, it allows me to vote the way I want, worship God freely, travel where I want, and own my own home. I was able to go school at the place of my choice, I married who I wanted, worked where I desired.

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During the summers up by the lake, my family attends a church that, at the beginning of each Memorial Day service, asks the men and women who served or are serving to stand up in recognition of what they have done. Even though my husband hasn’t been with me to most of those memorial services over the last ten years to stand up (due to training/deployments/etc.), the pride I feel is indescribable. Tears always form in my eyes at the sacrifices I know that each and every person who stood up has gone through. The sacrifices their¬†families have gone through.

Being a military wife has allowed me to meet some pretty incredible people. Never have I met a stronger bunch of women than my fellow military wives. We have gone through countless days and nights of our husbands being gone. We have solely dealt with illnesses, deaths, cross country/world moves, and much more.¬†Just because our husbands are gone doesn’t mean life stops. At times, it almost feels that the hardships speed up during those months of separation.

But to me, it’s worth it. The pride I feel when telling my daughters their Daddy is gone for a very special reason. A reason they won’t¬†understand until they are much older, but I promise – it’s worth it.

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That feeling? I wouldn’t trade it.

And with that, I want leave you with the lyrics of a song that is sung each memorial service at that summer church. The song that, while being sung, causes tears to fall down my cheeks because of the thankfulness I have for those brave men and women.

God Bless America 

While the storm clouds gather far across the sea,
Let us swear allegiance to a land that’s free,
Let us all be grateful for a land so fair,
As we raise our voices in a solemn prayer.
God bless America,
Land that I love.
Stand beside her, and guide her
Through the night with a light from above.
From the mountains, to the prairies,
To the oceans, white with foam
God bless America, My home sweet home.

I’d say we’re pretty blessed. Don’t you agree?