Honey Do Pre Deployment List

With Rob’s deployment right around the corner it was time to whip out the ole note pad and start making what I call a, “Honey Do Pre Deployment List”. It’s a great way to keep track of what needs to be done before he leaves and gives him a heads up to plan accordingly.

I try to limit what gets put on the list. I don’t want to overwhelm him but there are some things I definitely need done before he leaves. We are having a huge yard sale a few days before he leaves so that will clean out the garage. I have a few more projects I need his help with to finish the craft room/office. Then it’s just hanging a few things and getting all of his stuff in order. I definitely want him to do all of his laundry before he leaves. Last time I had a few loads and it was so sad to put everything away after he left :/

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On the Eve of Your Return

On the eve of your return, there is so much going through my mind and my heart.

I can’t even begin to imagine how different the last few months of our lives have been. I almost wish that life could have stopped when you left. Instead, we had to learn how to manage our day to day lives without one another. While I know that made me stronger, it made me realize that without you, I am only half of what I am capable of.

We have only been able to talk for moments during your time away and although I tried to update you on as much as I can, there are many things that didn’t make the cut or I simply forgot about. You’ll probably hear quite a few, “oh yeah I forgot to mention that.”

I have replaced your setting at the dinner table, towel in the bathroom and started practicing staying on my side of the bed. I had taken them away the day you left so it wasn’t a constant reminder that you were not there. I have to admit I am looking forward to reassigning you some weekly chores like the garbage!

If you thought I was good at reorganizing during a drill weekend imagine what I did with several months 😉 Really though, I managed to accomplish a lot of reorganizing so it may take you a little while to re-familiarize yourself. If you can’t find something, just ask. Don’t get too comfortable though, you have a drill weekend coming up.

Most importantly, please don’t be hurt if Parker is hesitant when he sees you. He has been calling our iPad Dada for so long it will take him a little time to make the connection to an actual person. He is still that fun loving and adventurous little boy just with a few new tricks up his sleeve. It may take a little while for you to learn his lingo. Don’t worry, there are some things that I still don’t get.

I am sure it will take time to get readjusted. You life has been so different the last few months that even having a bathroom a few steps from our bed and a full nights sleep on a soft bed may seem foreign to you. I’ll make sure to give you some space and time to readjust, just know that I am here for whatever you need whenever you are ready.

Love,
Mary & Parker

Staying On Schedule {Military Monday’s}

I have always been one to make lists. It gives me a clear picture of everything I need to get done and helps me feel accomplished at the end of the day. Sometimes I go as far as writing something down just to cross it off. Making lists help me stay on schedule and keep up with all of my responsibilities. I am glad that I was organized before this deployment because it has certainly helped with this transition to single parenting.

It took a few weeks but P and I are finally getting into our own groove. He goes to daycare a few hours each week, he visits the gym’s nursery while I work with a physical trainer two days a week and we have our weekly playdates with local stay-at-home moms. In between those times we play, take walks, go shopping and visit with friends and family.

I have been pretty successful with keeping up on the house work, laundry and up-keep of things. I make sure that the dishes are done, a load of laundry is in and all of P’s toys are cleaned up each evening. If it means I don’t get up to my craft room to start working until 9, than that is okay. Life is so much easier when you start your day ahead. I love walking up the stairs at night with a clean playroom and kitchen.

I have been following my cleaning schedule as close as possible which spreads out the household chores throughout the week. This made it easy when Rob was around and even easier now. As long as I follow it, I only have about 10-20 minutes of house work each day. I usually try to get it done when P plays after breakfast or after I drop him off at daycare. I do need to come up with a fall cleaning checklist similar to my spring cleaning one. Some things that don’t get attention every week are getting a little nasty.

Knowing when to ask for help has been very important and something that I am not very good at. Last night I was getting ready to put some things in the car when one of our neighbors kids approached me and asked if I would be interested in letting him mow the lawn for $10. I was putting off trying to do it myself for as long as possible but knew it needed to get done. I asked he would also do the back, for an extra $10, and he agreed. I think $20 was well worth saving me the aggravation of finding time this week and figuring out how to do it. I know I am perfectly capable, but it was nice to have it done and I was helping teach a young adult how to support themselves.

Now, the things I still need to work on more. I tend to work up in my craft room during P’s afternoon nap. Usually that is the time that Rob is putting together dinner. I have realized over the last few weeks that if I want P and I to eat homemade well balanced meals, I need to spend more time preparing a menu and putting it together each night. If it means I need to give up some craft time, it is well worth it. So this week I put together a menu and P and I went to the store this morning to get everything. I plan to start working on dinner about 5 each evening so we can eat around 6.

I also need to go downstairs, to our room, earlier at night. There are so many blog posts, crafts and home admin items I want to get done but I just can’t finish everything. I realized in the first week that I need to make sure I am getting enough sleep and taking care of myself. This includes winding down for the night and getting a few minutes between looking at the computer and laying my head on the pillow. This will allow me plenty of time to use my MaryKay masks and beauty products to help me look my best for Rob’s homecoming 🙂

I have to admit, it was really therapeutic to write this all down. It may not be a list but it was sure helpful to see everything I have going on day to day. I’ll try not to beat myself up too much for not getting more done as I go downstairs a little earlier tonight than I did last night. I can’t take the yawning anymore! 🙂

I am hoping I can share with you my first care package to Rob next week. I don’t want to share the goodies until he gets it but here is a sneak peak in the meantime!

I am so excited to co-host this weekly link party Caity from DIY Navy Momma. We have known one another for about 18 months, went through our first pregnancies together and both have currently deployed husbands.

I have found such a strong bond and support system within the military spouse community. This will be a fun and exciting way to keep in touch, offer support, and share excitement! I look forward to getting to know everyone and following along in your journey.

Share a new or old post, anything related to the military or military life you have written. Make sure to link the actual post (not just your blog) so it is easier for readers to find! 
Share as many posts as you want each week.
Visit some of the other links and leave some love.
We welcome giveaways especially if they help fellow military spouses or their families. 
Please include the below button in any posts you link up to help spread the word about our Military Monday Link Party.
Each week we will choose our favorites and showcase them in the next link party.




Military Monday’s {Link Party} ~ It Can Wait

“It can wait…”

Even though I say these words every day, I don’t think they have ever been directed at the right things. It took Rob being gone only a week for me to make this realization. I look back on all the times I could have spent relaxing with him, enjoying our time together. Instead, I always thought that could wait and my to-do list needed the attention. I have a lot on my plate even though I am SAHM.

I knew this deployment would be different and harder than the last. I didn’t realize how much I relied on Rob in the evenings and on the weekend to help with P. It didn’t help that I came down with an awful cold and felt like I had the wind knocked out of me the last few days. Luckily, P shows no signs of it! I swear if this kid has a better immune system than me we should be tested for super powers 🙂

This past week has been a good look into what the next few months will be like. Tough, but we got through it and even got to see his smiling face the other day. P was absolutely adorable when he saw Rob and knew who he was right away. Here is what I learned so far this week…

– Being the soul caregiver for a baby is HARD WORK. Major props to all the single parents out there!

– If you are going to IKEA, park near a cart return. I parked in my usual, away from the entrance, and had to balance a few boxes and baskets on the stroller and my hip. I must have been a riot to watch.

– You will quickly learn every tool on the work bench

– When you start to feel the anxiety come on, take a breathe, stop what ever you are doing, and play with your baby. They are the only thing that can’t wait.

– Even having a security system, I still need to shut every baby gate in the house, sleep with the light on and my glasses on. I am sure I will get more used to it as time goes on but it’s what I need to do right now.

– I am stronger and more capable than I think. I won’t be perfect and I won’t get everything I want to done. If Rob comes back to a newly painted house decorated for the holiday’s with a skinny wife and son who is walking, I accomplished by job 🙂

I am so excited to introduce a new weekly link up here at Cherry Blossom Love and couldn’t image a better co-host, Caity from DIY Navy Momma. We have known one another for about 18 months, went through our first pregnancies together and both have currently deployed husbands.

I have found such a strong bond and support system within the military spouse community. This will be a fun and exciting way to keep in touch, offer support, and share excitement! I look forward to getting to know everyone and following along in your journey.

Share a new or old post, anything related to the military or military life you have written. Make sure to link the actual post (not just your blog) so it is easier for readers to find! 
Share as many posts as you want each week.
Visit some of the other links and leave some love.
We welcome giveaways especially if they help fellow military spouses or their families. 
Please include the below button in any posts you link up to help spread the word about our Military Monday Link Party.
Each week we will choose our favorites and showcase them in the next link party.


Our Part-Time Military Life

On our second date, while walking around The White House, Rob got a call from the station chief in Alaska. I remember walking next to him and listening to his side of the conversation. He was being asked to deploy for a few months to back-fill a team that was being sent overseas. I remember feeling my heart pound a little harder and faster. 
You see, I didn’t really grow up around the military. By the time I was born, the veterans in my family had all finished their service and it was never really talked about growing up. It’s not that my family isn’t patriotic, it just wasn’t part of our life. My father was enlisted in the US Army as an Artillery Forward Observer during peace time (for those of you who are old enough to remember that). My maternal Grandfather was a Navigator in the US Army Air Corps on a B-17 at the end of WWII but never made it into combat as his training was completed near the end of the war. My paternal Grandfather was an Engineering Office in the Air Force. 
Although we were only on our second date, I knew that Rob was a Weather Forecaster for the Air National Guard. At the time, I couldn’t tell you what that title meant, but it was definitely an attractive quality. When he got off the phone, he looked at me a little nervous and elaborated on their conversation. I will never forgot what he asked me then, “would you be willing to wait for me?” My response, “when can I come and visit?”
Four and a half years later, we are happily married with a beautiful baby boy. While I still have a lot to learn about the military way of life, I am learning more everyday. Rob often throws around acronyms but has learned my “remember who you are talking to” face and will automatically provide more detail. I was so proud to watch Rob reenlist and commit to protecting this country for another six years. This past June, I also had the honor of participating in his promotion ceremony to Technical Sergeant. Parker even got to help “tack” on his rank. 
For awhile now, I have referred to myself as a part-time military wife. I mostly call myself that out of respect for those women and men whose spouses serve full-time. For those service men and women whose full-time job is to train and maintain their readiness to deploy at anytime. For those spouses who live the military life 24/7. 
Don’t get me wrong, being a part-time military family is not easy or any less honorable, just different. We have to find our place in both the military and civilian world. We have to find balance in both our military and civilian life.
As a SAHM, I have to switch back and forth from a 9-5 civilian life the hectic, unsettled life of a military wife. As many know, the one weekend a month and two weeks a year is truly a fallacy. I may live a normal life most days but I live with that thought in the back of my mind, “will he be here next month”. When we are preparing to hunker down during a natural disaster, I am thinking, “will he be here to help us through it?” 
Rob has to find balance in both his civilian job and his military career. Taking time to get ahead in one, means he has to sacrifice the other. He wants nothing more than to pursue a commission in the Air National Guard but that would mean leaving his civilian job for six months. While his civilian employer must hold a job for him, it would impact his career advancement. With only about 38 days in uniform each year, he has a very limited amount of time to train in his area of expertise. He often spends time outside of his military commitment doing this, which takes time away from his family. Not to mention the limited amount of time his has to build a strong camaraderie with the members of his unit. 
Rob was actually deployed for a few months last year in the middle of my pregnancy. I never talked about it here because I was still new to the blogging world and it made Rob nervous that people would know he was gone. Now that I am a little more experienced and Rob has learned more about the blogging life and what it means to be married to a blogger, he is more comfortable with it now. I am so excited to share some of my final thoughts as we get ready to send him off for another few months and what it is like to be a single SAH parent while he is gone. 
Part-time military life may not be easy, but I wouldn’t want it any other way. While it takes work to find balance and our place in each, we are so lucky to be a part of both.