Lets LINK and show what we are thankful for!

Friday, October 29

Friday Freebies, Deals and a special little Diva

I have decided that Fridays will be my days to share all of the freebies and deals I have come across for military families!  I am amazed what I find when I spend the time to look.  You will find links and the descriptions below.

As a military wife of a deployed Soldier and mom to 6 year old Diva I find myself often wishing I could take away both of their hurt.  I hurt for her because we don't live around any military so she feels alone in this and I hurt for him because he feels as though he is stealing a year from us.  So with all of this I asked her teacher if we could do something for Veterans Day... something that would allow Diva to show off her daddy and maybe get some of the other children to understand what our military does.  I was OVERWHELMED with the response I received.  Each child wrote a letter to a Soldier in his platoon, they brought food and snacks for them and she was over the moon when she could tell them all about her daddy.  Then this morning I walked into her daycare center and was asked if I would mind if they had all of the kids (about 150) write letters to the soldiers and if I would come in and talk to the children about what it's like being a military family.  I was floored... all of this coming from a town with no military base, a group of kids that ask Diva why her daddy left us.  Needless to say I can not wait to talk to the kids about the military on Monday.  I am even bringing in a book to read to them about Diva's daddy being a Hero and what it means to be in the military.  Sometimes all we have to do is ask.

This week was also Diva's Star of the Week... she got to bring in a whole poster about her.  In addition, her daddy made it the best week because he sent her flowers to school.  She couldn't believe that he would be able to do something like that... talk about feeling special.  She was ALL smiles when I picked her up.

Have a fabulous and safe Halloween weekend!!

Friday Freebies & Deals:


Since Priority Mail® supplies are the packaging of choice for families preparing care packages for service members overseas, the USPS® has created a "Mili-kit" based on the items most frequently requested by the military.
The kit contains:
Three (3) each of flat rate boxes O-FRB1 and O-FRB2
Two each of Cube boxes OBOX4 and OBOX7
Address labels - Label # 228 10 each
One roll of Priority Mail tape
15 customs forms with envelopes.
The kit may be requested by calling 1-800-610-8734 (Packing Supply) and:
Choose your language (1 is English, 2 is Spanish).
Choose option 1 (it states it is for Express Mail®, Priority Mail or Global Express Guaranteed® products).
When you reach a live agent, request CAREKIT04.
Please allow 7-10 days for delivery.
Note: These are free supplies, postage must be affixed.

<>Military Cell Phone Deals
Cingular offers a 19% military discount. Call 1-800-319-6393. Update: for Cingular's discounts to take effect, you will need to sign up for at least a 1-year service agreement. With a .mil email address, you can sign up for the discount at their website.
T-Mobile Call 1-866-646-4688. No additional contract required. Their military discounts are: Activation Fee: Waived, Voice rate plans: 9.3%, Data Standalone plans: 3.3%, Add on features: 5.3%, Blackberry Plans: 3.3%, Equipment: $20 off, Overages: 11.3%, Long Distance: 11.3%, International Long Distance: 11.3%
Nextel offers an 18% military discount. Call 1-800-639-6111. No additional contract required.
Verizon customer service number is 1-800-511-1150 and is open 8am-9pm M-F - the military discount is 15%. No additional contract required.

Friday, October 15

Milspouse Friday Fill-In

As a blog stalker I have seen this on several blogs and decided to join in on the fun... yippee!

Friday means MilSpouse Friday Fill-In. Wife of a Sailor has all the questions, so link up if you wish and join the fun.

1. What are some things on your bucket list? (from New Girl on Post)
My bucket list is long but the big ones include traveling abroad, skydiving and being a bestselling author

2. How long have you been a MilSpouse and where have you been stationed so far? (from Raising Roscoe)
I have been an Army Reserve spouse for 3 years... AD for 6 months, thanks to this lovely deployment.

3. What is a list of songs that sums up your life so far? (from Confessions of a Sailor’s Wife)
Meet In the Middle Diamond Rio, Stupid Boy- Keith Urban, Stupid In Love - Rhianna, Can't Take My Eyes Off You - Lady Antebellum and Daughters - John Mayer

4. What is your favorite kind of pizza?
Supreme.. for some reason it's great lately!

5. What are three good things in your life right now?
 - My beautiful daughter and handsome husband
 - I started writing my book
 - Started kickboxing and Krav Maga

Thursday, October 14

Countdowns... Day 7

We have all led a life of countdowns... Countdowns to birthday, to summer vacation, to first day of school... to graduation.  Then wedding, due dates, anniversaries... the list goes ON and ON.  As an Army wife I have so many new countdowns.  I am counting down how long he has been gone, how long since we got news of his orders (7 months), since he left for training before his deployment training (6 months), since he walked out the door for the last time (3 months) since I felt his kiss on my lips or his hand on my back (2 months) , how long until R&R (6 months), most importantly how long until this is all over (10 months!) and lastly how many years left before retirement (8 years... 3 maybe 4 deployments?).  I can't believe how many alarms are set on my blackberry reminding me, as though I could forget, of each milestone we pass. 
At this point most of our dates are non existent as we don't have anything definite yet.  I know that his orders are up NEXT summer and that he wants R&R around April... but that's about it.  Nothing concrete and nothing that I can seriously countdown to.  I think that makes this part of the deployment hard.  Nothing concrete.  Even though I know that nothing in the military is concrete it would be nice to have even a soft date... any date, heck MAKE ONE UP.  I don't really care at this point.  haha.

My handsome other half... on vacation
Our wedding anniversary was almost a month ago... and the anniversary of our first date is in just under a month... the anniversary of our daughter is coming up as are many other dates to countdown to.  I guess we just keep counting down to get that final date that much closer.  I think I will start counting pay periods as there are only 30 in our deployment... much nicer than thinking about the 15 months he will actually be gone.

On to my... Getting to Know You (I always say as a song.. silly me) post

Day 07 Someone who has made your life worth living for.

Yes... to me parenting is often like trying to herd cats!
This is the easier question… Diva!  I have always wanted to be a mommy… anyone that knows me knows this.  My fertility has been questionable for more than 10 years so I have pretty much written biology out of the equations.  I met Diva when she was 8 months old and fell in love instantly… however it took another 2 years to make her mine.  I fought, put up with questionable birth family visits and court appointments to have my little girl.  On December 5, 2006 I picked her up from her foster home and was her “Permanent Placement Plan”… I loved the word permanent.  I finally got my little girl and was going to be her mommy!  *Funny side story is that I had met BD just 3 weeks before this monumentous day* For the next 18 months I endured countless social services appointments, birth family visits (never birth mother), court hearings and continuations but on March 14, 2008 I signed my last official document making me her mother.  I have a birth certificate showing me and Big Daddy as her parents… our families are both so full of adoption and so many were there to celebrate with us.  That little girl in all her boogery-ness has made my life better every single day.

Tuesday, October 12

Day 06(ish) → Something you hope you never have to do.

Today is a sappy... I miss my husband day.  Now that he has been gone almost 6 months, still have 6 months till R&R and 10 months until he is home I am getting lonely.  I am so stinking tired of seeing homecomings because I know how much longer we have until we get ours.  I am totally happy and excited for my friends who's significant others are coming off of the buses and planes but SERIOUSLY let that be me.

So for my day 6ish... I dedicate to the love of my life.

There are many things I hope I never have to do but in light of BD being on vacation, having more friends deployed than I care to admit and knowing more than one 20-something with a purple heart... I hope I never have to live a day without BD.  When he and I met I told my mom that I could marry someone like him.  He was sweet but passionate about things.  Our first date started with my, basically, laying all of my baggage on the table before dinner... he sweetly smiled and asked if I was ready to order.  He has stood by me and been my biggest fan since the day we met.  He accepted all of me and loves all of me.  I could not imagine not having him as Diva’s father or my husband.  He is so caring, sweet… loving and understanding… yes, he snores (my Lord does that man snore), he gets all snippy over bad sports games BUT I would rather deal with any of his possible yuckiness than live my life with anyone else.  Yes, I am a proud wife… and a very loved wife.

Monday, October 11

Weekends... ahh my love/hate relationship

I love the weekend... Saturdays and Sundays are my mommy only days and I love them!  This weekend was so busy I can hardly believe that I allowed it.  Saturday morning was just running around... gone from 6:30am until almost 4.  The plus is that I was with Diva AND I got to see an old friend.   We also got to skype with daddy... it was so nice to see his skinny little Big Daddy face.  Then yesterday we were out all morning BUT home all afternoon.... then mommy to Big Daddy came over for dinner and cake.  See... today is BD's birthday the 3rd that he has spent in his current vacation destination.  So, I talked to his roommate and had him wake BD up at 0500 their time to skype a happy birthday party with us.  This was the first time that BD has seen his mom since he left in July... she was elated to say the least.  We sang Happy Birthday and he "blew out" his birthday candles.  We got to talk to him for about an hour... well his mother and I as Diva was WAY too busy watching Wizards of Waverly Place to to talk to him.

Anyone have kids with this skype lack of interest in their parent?? I find it so frustrating.

Well I have decided that my Day's are going to be off basically because the weekend is pretty much computer free in our house.  Diva and I get to do Diva and I stuff... no work done. 

Day 05 → Something you hope to do in your life
I hope I do a lot of things in my life… currently the #1 on the list is surviving this deployment.  Ha ha.  I know that I will continue to be the best mother and wife that I can.  I want to buy a house and expand my family but there are actually 2 things that I want to do in my life, both in the next 4 years.
1- I want to become a New York Times Bestselling Author.  I am in the process of writing my first book now which will hopefully be released by this time next year. 
2- I want to become an accomplished speaker; talking about domestic violence in the military and how to recognize the signs in our relationships and in our friends.  As military wives all we have is each other so often.  Our husbands are deployed and we are raising our families however when our husbands are home we are still family. 

Saturday, October 9

Day 4 and the serious stupidity of people!

Ok... so my husband has been gone a grand total of 6 months and we still have about 10 months left.  Yes, this blows!  With that being said, people are just idiots.  I can not tell you how many times I have been asked "Isn't that hard? I mean your husband being gone THAT long."  REALLY... ARE YOU JOKING.  Nope, not hard at all... he is just at war fighting for your freedom to be an idiot.  I always try to muster some serious answer like, "Well he loves it and it's who we are" or "Yes maam it's extremely hard but I love him so much it's all worth it".  Some days I want to lift their hand up and smack them with it and say uhh... DUH.  I am sure that so much of it is not knowing what to say because they aren't used to our lifestyle but then just don't say anything.  I have been asked if I am scared for him, people wonder why my husband is in Iraq if there is no more combat... I don't mind legit questions about our communication or his branch of service.  I am so proud of him but good gracious people, think before you speak.

Ok... onto day 4

Day 04 → Something you have to forgive someone for

Sadly, I don't really feel like there is anyone in my life now or before that is pending forgiveness.  As I said in a previous post, I forgive pretty easily.  I honestly don't let many people know me though either.  After BD and I adopted Diva most of my friends walked out of my life therefore it left a void but also one that I didn't care to replace.  Since she came I tend to keep to my family more.  The less I open up the less people can hurt me and therefore the less forgiveness I need to worry about.

Have a great night!

Friday, October 8

Technology and Forgiveness

Ahhh technology! Deployments suck... we all know this. It sucks that your loved one isn't there. It sucks that you have to watch all these people on TV making out, families at the grocery store and hear all these cutsy stories at work from women talking about the sweet way their husband was on their date last night... YEP SUCKS. Well, with that being said... THANK GOODNESS FOR TECHNOLOGY. How cool is it that we have email, skype, IM, text and cell phones... things that they haven't had in wars past. Back in the day women waited MONTHS for a letter to come telling them that their man was ok, sorry there were no women on the front line then. Now we have almost instant gratification. With that comes responsibility though... first you have OPSEC and PERSEC. Operational and Personal Security... basically but don't put it all out on the web because most likely it will fall into the wrong hands. Second comes the hard one for me... expecting the call, IM, email or skype at a certain time. I sat at my desk the other day over an hour having to pee because BD had been emailing me at a certain time. Finally my bladder won out and I went to the bathroom... cell phone in hand just in case he emailed my personal account. Yes, it's crazy. What we do to ensure communication with our service member... the places my phone goes makes people laugh and when I get a weird look in the bathroom holding my cell phone and checking it incessantly I simply smile and say "my husband is in Iraq and I don't want to miss the call"... most people still think I am crazy as I wouldn't dare answer my cell while peeing. NEWSFLASH... Yes, I would as if BD has not heard me pee before. Knowing Big Daddy... he would just laugh. Thank you Alexander Graham Bell and Al Gore for inventing the two things that my life as the wife of a deployed soldier revolve around.

Now onto my 30 day challenge... which is challenging for me.

Day 03 Something you have to forgive yourself for

Anyone who knows me knows that I forgive pretty easy but not always the best at the forgetting part. BD was the first person I had apologized to for anything in more years that I care to admit. With all the forgiveness that I do, I don't forgive myself for much. I am harder on myself than anyone ever has the opportunity to be. I always worry that I am going to mess up Diva, that I am not going to be everything that my husband wants/needs me to be. It's truly amazing how hard I am on ME. Forgiveness is such a fickle thing.
I need to learn to forgive myself for not standing up to people in my past that have hurt me. I never stood up to my certain individuals and I have let that control me for too long. I have to forgive myself for taking all of my hurt out on people who truly love me. I am learning.

Thursday, October 7

Day 02 → Something you love about yourself

Day 3 of the new blog... I got to IM with BD yesterday.  Well actually I am blessed that I get to IM or email him daily, baring any missions or internet blackouts.  Yes, we pay dearly but the $88 for in-room internet is still cheaper than his cell phone bill when he is home.  I am not like some of the wives that freak out if I don't hear from him and pace by the door waiting for the Chaplain, nor am I one that gets all pissy when I don't hear from him (yes I know those wives)... my husband isn't even on Facebook so I don't stalk him there.  We just have a great marriage that is all about trust... I know that he will email, call, IM or skype whenever he can... no pressure.  This deployment has taught us so much about being patient, understanding and taught us both that we really need to do better at listening.  BD has a loud Army voice and I tend to be loud at times... so we are not always the best at actually listening to eachother.  Over the past 6 months I have seem that Diva has my sass, thats for sure.  With her daddy's facial expressions... interesting combination for sure.

So... Day 2 was a hard question too.  Not hard because I had to find SOMETHING that I loved about myself but the one thing that I loved the most and that defined me the best.  So here goes.

I love a lot of things about myself but what I love most is my strength. 8 years ago I left an abusive relationship and started a new life. 4 years ago I began a journey to adopt my beautiful daughter as a single parent. 3 years ago I married my best friend and the Army. 7 months ago my husband told me he would be leaving in 30 days for training and then a 13 month deployment to Iraq. Strength is just something I am and I am proud of my strength. It’s odd to talk about my feelings about… well myself. I can talk about most things pretty easily. I found this question to be a bit difficult but realized that my strength is what has kept me alive and moving forward. My strength led me to my amazing husband because Lord knows it took strength to enter into a relationship. It was my strength that allowed me to KNOW I could move forward in adopting without a partner… it’s my strength that is getting me through each day the wife of a deployed soldier… and it’s my strength that keeps me from snapping off to some idiot that asks me things such as “Aren’t you afraid he is going to get killed?” or “Do you miss him?” or my personal favorite “How do you do this?” Lets see… yes, I am terrified that the love of my life and my soul mate will be injured but I have faith in the Lord that nothing will happen. We have both been through our share of heartache and crap, nothing is going to stop me from sharing my life with him! Do I miss him? Yes, like I would miss my right arm if it were suddenly taken away. I miss little things like his smell, the smell of oversprayed Axe body spray in my bathroom every morning… and the big things like his arms wrapped around me at the end of a long day or his kiss before bed every night. How do I do this… oh yes HOW. Well moron, the better question is: How could I NOT do this? This is my husband not my neighbor, I love him more than anything… we have vows, and a relationship. We have a future. See… strength not to backhand stupid people. Haha.

Confront the dark parts of yourself, and work to banish them with illumination and forgiveness. Your willingness to wrestle with your demons will cause your angels to sing. Use the pain as fuel, as a reminder of your strength.”  August Wilson

Wednesday, October 6

Day 01 → Something you hate about yourself.

Something I hate about myself...
I can’t really say that I HATE anything about myself… I dislike that I hate putting laundry away to the point that it just piles up clean in buckets in which case I spend TOO much time ironing every morning, I dislike doing dishes, I dislike that I look at myself being about 50lbs heavier than I really am.

Ok… so I guess I hate that about myself. I hate that I put such an emphasis on being thin, that my life revolves around what I eat and how… that I freak if I gain a single pound! Diva and I are trying to eat better while BD is gone... that way when he gets home we will all be better with our clean eating. BD has been doing an amazing job getting into even better shape since he left.  We have been the opposite... I think for every pound he has lost I have, so sweetly found and inherited.  I am so proud of him and wish that I had his motivation.  I am just in a rut... I know this but I hate that I am miserable looking at my self in a swimsuit right now because I am not in impeccable shape, mind you I weigh 127lbs. I have not been able to make it to the gym consistently since BD deployed and have gained a few inches. I hate it and cry... then drown my sorrows in dark chocolate. Yep, I have eating issues. I think I would binge and purge if I didn't mind the throwing up part. I just binge... it's sad and pathetic. I know this, I accept this and I work on it but it's a flaw.

I don't want Diva to inherit my flaw, I want her to love her little body no matter what shape she is. We are practicing healthy eating and portions right now as I think she is a bottomless pit. I could only wish!

Tuesday, October 5

Our little family...

Hi. I am Mrs. BD, I am married to my darling husband, Big Daddy and together we have created our very own little Diva. BD and I were married a little over 3 years ago after a whirlwind romance. I never thought my life could or would change that drastically in 10 months, but it did and we couldn't be happier. BD and I met weeks after his return from his last deployment and were married just 10 months later. Diva entered our life via adoption when she was 2.5 years old and we couldn't be more thrilled. Being a mother is something that I knew would happen but being the wife to a Soldier is simply a dream come true.

Currently BD is deployed to a beautiful tropical destination while Diva and I continue life at home. We are a reserve family in the midst of our first family deployment. Currently BD has been gone, including all the fun training before he deployed, about 6 months and we still have 10 months before he returns from his vacation. While he is sunning, I work full time, volunteer as much as I can and am writing a book... all while making sure that Diva doesn't get out of hand, gets her homework done and minds her manners.

I started this blog to talk about the no frills reality of deployment. We all have our issues, our frustrations and hell we have lives. Getting through this with other wives that "get it" is a blessing.

In order to get to know me.. and us everyday for 30 days, I will answer the corresponding question provided below.

I looked over these questions, and some made me very nervous!

I will do my best to answer these fully and honestly as close to daily as possible... starting tomorrow.

Here is the list:
Day 01 → Something you hate about yourself.
Day 02 → Something you love about yourself.
Day 03 → Something you have to forgive yourself for.
Day 04 → Something you have to forgive someone for.
Day 05 → Something you hope to do in your life.
Day 06 → Something you hope you never have to do.
Day 07 → Someone who has made your life worth living for.
Day 08 → Someone who made your life hell, or treated you like shit.
Day 09 → Someone you didn’t want to let go, but just drifted.
Day 10 → Someone you need to let go, or wish you didn’t know.
Day 11 → Something people seem to compliment you the most on.
Day 12 → Something you never get compliments on.
Day 13 → A band or artist that has gotten you through some tough ass days. (write a letter.)
Day 14 → A hero that has let you down. (letter)
Day 15 → Something or someone you couldn’t live without, because you’ve tried living without it.
Day 16 → Someone or something you definitely could live without.
Day 17 → A book you’ve read that changed your views on something.
Day 18 → Your views on gay marriage.
Day 19 → What do you think of religion? Or what do you think of politics?
Day 20 → Your views on drugs and alcohol.
Day 21 → (scenario) Your best friend is in a car accident and you two got into a fight an hour before. What do you do?
Day 22 → Something you wish you hadn’t done in your life.
Day 23 → Something you wish you had done in your life.
Day 24 → Make a playlist to someone, and explain why you chose all the songs. (Just post the titles and artists and letter)
Day 25 → The reason you believe you’re still alive today.
Day 26 → Have you ever thought about giving up on life? If so, when and why?
Day 27 → What’s the best thing going for you right now?
Day 28 → What if you were pregnant or got someone pregnant, what would you do?
Day 29 → Something you hope to change about yourself. And why.
Day 30 → A letter to yourself, tell yourself EVERYTHING you love about yourself