Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Almost home
Gosh, most of my posts start with "Eeek... I've been neglecting this..." It's been 10 months since my last post. I'm blaming it on FaceBook. GPa swears FB is the root of all evil. I'm quite convinced he may even blame FB for problems in the mideast. "That damn Facebook" is usually his first response when any issues arise. Moving on... So where 41 days from being reunited with MrE, as he told us me today on the phone. My response, "Oh, really?" Than I made a *hmphh* sound. Let me explain before I come off as a cold beyatch... I have rules to make deployments easier. Some of these include: 1. Once he is gone, don't count the days. Just get into a routine. Time goes by quicker this way and I'm not counting every day, sadly... 2. We don't think about him gone, he just is. If we dwell on it the deployment would drag and we'd go crazy. Don't get me wrong. We have our 'miss daddy' moments. We just don't let them rule us. 3. I never get excited for his return until the ticket has been purchased. Actually I only get a little excited for that because that can change. I get super excited when he is on his way! Case in point, last deployment they left the ship via helicopter only to get to the air field and miss the connecting plane. Back to the ship they went. For another week. Nothing is every guaranteed but change... So potentially close to being a whole family again. For that I can cheer because we are certainly close, just not sure if it is 41 days close.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Gone Again
As I stopped by our little blog I was hit with the realization of just how neglected it was. After all, my last post was in March when MrE had returned from a 7mo deployment floating around the Gulf of Aden. Here we are again, 2 months into a 12mo IA. Individual Assignment in Navy Speak. Your family can't come with you is the civilian translation.

So let us rewind. MrE comes home. Yey. We spent lots of good family time together. MrE reported to his new command, a shore duty assignment, at Little Creek Amphibious Base, which luckily was 2 miles from our door. There was much rejoicing. He could drive that in 5 minutes. There are stop lights and a gate to go through. Or he could ride his bike. Also in 5 minutes. We were able to stay in our same home despite our landlords losing the house to Fannie Mae. Things were looking good. In April he went to Germany for a short work trip when the word came down, he was a good fit for an upcoming IA. Despite being told volunteering for it would be good for his career, we also realized he was being voluntold. No worries, figured this was coming.

We made some decisions. Found a great furnished rental in MA around the corner from my parents. Formulated a plan and started the good bye process. Again. Had a few get aways, Great Wolf Lodge two times and Dominican Republic. Lots of great family time. Visited with his parents. Said 'see you later' to great friends in VA. Moved into our MA house. Spent time with my family. Moved out of the VA house. Dropped him off at the airport. Roughly in that order.

Again no worries, we knew an IA would come at some point. Of course we miss each other, but other than the separation it isn't that bad. Even MrE is having a good time, again this is aside from the fact that we aren't together. Bahrain is better than Afghanistan, Iraq or even 7 mos on a steel ship with the same crew with minimal port visits.

While there may be an occasional sigh or scream heard from our house, we do love this crazy Navy life. Hopefully the next post won't be his return. My poor neglected blog.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Daddy Is Home!

Just over six months later, JR returned quietly to Norfolk on a commercial late night flight in civilian clothes. It wasn't as grand as when a ship pulls pier side while hundreds to thousands of family members wait for their sailor to disembark the place that has been home for several months or when any other unit returns together at one place whether on a flight line, airport, base, etc as family & friends wait running to greet them... It was no less moving though! To be able to run up to your loved one for a hug after months of separation with just phone calls and emails is beyond words. All the other background noise disappears because at that moment you are whole again.

At 9:30p Connor & I drove to the airport to pick up a friend. I wanted it to be a surprise for C. He was in his pajamas & excited to see the planes land. We had to leave Maggie at home with Nana because a couple of hours before landing time she was the first to start with the stomach virus, but that is another story! As Connor & I played in the kid section at the airport and ran to the window to see planes land I imagined him running to JR while screaming "DADDY!!!" I kept getting teary at the thought of this reunion. As the people started to walk through security I was getting Connor excited to see our friend. Then the moment was here. I pointed down the walkway for Connor to look, but he was looking at different people. Possibly thinking, 'mommy, why on earth would you ask me who that is? I have no idea.' Finally, he saw him. He did run to him, but quietly. There was no yelling. No crying. Just pure amazement that his daddy was home. If he were old enough to understand the saying pinch me, I think I'm dreaming he may have just asked me to pinch him. As I recorded this reunion of one little boy and our hero I asked him, "Who is that?" and JR asked "Is it daddy?" Our little boy in completely awe of daddy's return said the best "yeah" I had ever heard in my life!

We returned quietly home to one little girl who was just as excited to have her daddy back home too. So excited in fact that she would share her stomach virus to all of us.

So this E! clan is whole again. Daddy, mommy, C & M together safely under one roof. Well for the mean time anyway, we are a Navy family after all!


Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Christmas In MA

So Christmas Eve and Day in Massachusetts with the C & J families, respectively, was wonderful. It was the first time in a few years that most everyone was together from my mom's family. Up until Christmas I had been handling MrE's deployment well, if I do say so myself. But hearing his voice on the phone Christmas Eve as family was arriving just set me off. I hid in the bedroom while on the phone, at least until the tears stopped. However, when I put the call on speaker phone for him to say hello to all more tears followed. Just not from me. Mom, Aunty V, & my brother's wife were all teary as well. That darn C gene!!! He was able to talk with everyone in the family, which was a special treat for all. I know it helped bring a smile to MrE's face. There were lots of laughs and just as many little kids running around my parents house. It was another good holiday gathering.

The next day we were off to the Cape to see my dad's family. More fun was had visiting with cousins we don't see often enough. My children were infatuated with the spiral staircase in the great room which led to the game room/loft. Oh the little things...

Since then we've had fun visiting with family & friends, celebrating another 1st birthday for LittleMiss, a 3rd birthday for Zilla as well as other birthdays for other cousins. We've seen more snow than we could care for. No honestly, it has snowed once a week since we've been here... We've also had a couple of illnesses that have postponed our return to VA. LittleMiss has had pneumonia, croup & a cold. I think she is looking for germs since she seems to be getting sick every time we are to travel. Very peculiar if you ask me.

We'll be heading back Norfolk on March 2nd, which is a firm departure... Anything after that and MrE will have to come get us. That is right folks, he should be home in March. Well, that is as long as the Navy says, "Yes MrE, you may go to your 3rd department head sea duty job..." Until then, we'll be recovering and visiting with family for the remainder of our trip.

Azzy & munchkins, xoxo

Sunday, February 20, 2011
Christmas Show

MrE's deployment brought lots of things, good & bad... Among the good was putting the kids in daycare for the duration of the deployment. The women that teach my children are wonderful! They have learned so much. The time away fosters independence and allows this mum to clean, go grocery shopping and catch my breath where there is no other break. As Christmas approached I saw a notice on the door for the holiday show, which Bean was performing in!!! To say I was beyond excited doesn't accurately portray how excited I was. Okay so the 2-3yo class wasn't singing Jingle Bells as much as they were shaking the bells while dancing on stage. It was so cute though. And our wonderful friends joined us for the concert!!!

The support and love we have from friends is amazing & has made this deployment easy, all things considered.

-Azzy & munchkins, xoxo