Chris's Change of Command

Chris's Change of Command

Daily Bible Verse

Saturday, August 24, 2013


I started this blog 6 years ago when Chris was deploying to Iraq for the second time.  Because he was living at an Iraqi police station the entire deployment, we had very little communication.  I remember taking a huge sigh of relief when we would finally get that 5 minute phone call or email after 2 or 3 weeks without hearing anything from him.  I knew I could never catch him up on our lives in those brief moments, so I would blog about our everyday so he could hopefully hop online at some point and read what we were up to and see how the kids were growing.
God blessed us with back to back duty stations where Chris rarely had to be gone after our time at Camp Lejeune.  For 3 years he was an instructor at EWTGLANT (expeditionary warfare) and then he went to school for a year at Command and Staff.  We knew that as soon as we checked into life with an infantry battalion again, his schedule would be crazy and deployment would be soon.
This summer has been tough.  So much in and out when you are training to deploy with a MEU (Marine Expeditionary Unit).  When the weeks leading up to his actual departure came, it was good to have him home for just a bit before the long deployment. 
Those two weeks before a deployment are such a strange reality.  You are trying to squeeze in all these precious, sweet, perfect memories before they go, but  then real life happens.  Someone gets sick, or doesn't sleep well, or has a Dr appointment, or gets called into work, or someone is in a bad mood.  Life.  Reality.  And you try so hard to make this bubble of time "perfect" which puts way to much pressure on everyone.  My dear friend described it as walking on eggshells as not to make any waves or make the bubble burst.
Being deployment #5, I knew I was tempted to make my perfect bubble of time with planning fun things to do, or making sure the house was in order all the time, or putting all these crazy high expectations on how perfect these weeks would be, etc.  I prayed all the time that I could let go of what I thought should happen and that we could all just do life together, whatever it looked like, and be so thankful for whatever kind of moments we were able to share.  And boy, when I let go of my silly notions, God complete blessed us.  We had some awesome family time.  Not doing anything other and hanging out and being our little family of 5. 


The day finally came to say our "see you laters".  It's best to make it short and sweet for us.  Like ripping off a band aid.  With this deployment, there will be no such thing as having Facetime or Skype.  We will be fortunate to hear from him through email every now and then.  And phone calls will be few and far between.  So I will continue to document our goings on here at home while he bravely does his job as a United States Marine. 

 "May the LORD keep watch between you and me when we are away from each other." 
 Genesis 31:49

Grammy and Big Daddy Visit

We had a wonderful visit with Chris's parents, aka Grammy and Big Daddy at the end of July.  We went to the pool, ate a Ruby's, went to church, shopped, played in the neighborhood and just had so much fun. 
Swimming here in SoCal is so much different from East Coast summers.  When the temps dip into the mid 60s at night and only reach a high of upper 70s, the water is a tad chilly.  All summer.  Here is our favorite way to warm up.  Laying on the nice warm pavement. 
Hannah and Big Daddy were chatting about important life events such as when we were going to have snack.


Hayley helping Grammy make her famous applesauce.  Sooooo yummy.

So great to visit with them and we are looking forward to our visit in December when we get to GA!!!!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Let's Go Swimming

Two weeks of swim lessons/swim stroke clinic was a great time for all.  Ummm.  Maybe not all.  Hannah was in the mom and me class (they start unassisted lessons at 4).  She was not a fan.  She loves the water and swims like a fish with her puddle jumper on, but she is not ready to go under.  The instructors were ready for her to go under.  Not a good mix.  Here she is on the first day before lessons.  After day 3, we decided it was best for everyone involved to call it quits and try again next year. 
These two on the other hand, did awesome.  They were in level 5 which is just working on different strokes and swimming endurance.  They couldn't wait to go everyday.
Here is what HB did the rest of the two weeks of lessons.  She has quite the imagination.

Aunt Holly was here for their final lesson.  HB was glad to have someone to play with during the wait.


Passed with flying colors.  On to Level 6 next year.  Woohoo!!!!


Monday, August 12, 2013

Palm Desert Getaway

For Luke's big birthday weekend, Aunt Holly treated us to a fun trip to Palm Desert, CA.  She had been in L.A. the entire week for work, so we drove up to pick her up Friday morning and head out to the HOT desert.
A view of Los Angeles on our drive to Holly's hotel.
Lounging on the cool sofas they had in the lobby of the hotel

We spent pretty much all of our outside time in one of the resorts pool (one of them had an awesome water slide).  Thankfully the weather was somewhat overcast which made the temps a little more bearable.
Luke the morning of his big 10th birthday

Opening his present from Chris and I.  He got an iPod Nano and was thrilled to say the least.

Sweet card from Hayley

Hayley sporting some of Aunt Holly's shoes.  The pose cracks me up.


Chris had just gotten off ship from his 2nd 3 weeks at sea training for his upcoming deployment.  He surprised the kiddos and showed up at our resort on Saturday morning. 
Best present EVER!

Birthday dinner at the Cheesecake Factory

We had an incredible time.  Thanks for the fun trip, Aunt Holly.  Made some great memories we will never forget.