Friday, September 30, 2011

Hunting Season!

So because of deployments, school and other conflicting schedules I have not gone hunting in a few years. However this year I made it back in time for HUNTING SEASON!!! So excited, you dont even know! Let me tell you that Haley has been awesome about the whole thing. This is all pretty new to her and she is taking it like a champ, the daily corn feeds, the constant bow practice, not to mention the life like deer targets in the back yard! Anyway just had to share my excitement with everybody!

Just hanging out outside my back fence! Our house backs up to some guys ranch.

This is my little spike that has shown up everyday for the past month.

This guy I am really excited about, peek-a-boo I see you!!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


Just so you know, we are still alive and very happy to be such.
In fact, life has been so fun, we have neglected to update this blog very often
or at all
So please continue your patience while I work up the courage to cram about a month of events
into a single post.

It will cover such fascinating details as:
- buying a new master bed
- buying a new washer
- buying a new truck
- buying me an unholy amount of new clothing
- having heart palpitations about the amount of money leaving our account
- visiting family in San Antonio
- having family visit us in Copperas Cove
- hosting a "welcome home" bbq in our backyard for Matt and all our soldier-y friends
- Bennett learning the phrase, "Hey! Wait for me!" and "Hey! Wait a minute!" (my favorites)
- Matt and I becoming very church-oriented as we are thrown into primary, cub scouts, the primary program, young mens, and boy scouts.
-going through huge amounts of attic, under-the-bed, and closet junk.
- escaping on a wonderful, much-needed Bennett-less vacation to Austin, where we lived it up
- Me actually being in a picture because we finally have somebody else in the family who can work a camera.
- Matt getting "deer fever" (did you know hunting season is about three months long? THREE MONTHS LONG...ugh...)

So look forward, my friends.
one day...

Sunday, September 4, 2011

348 Days

September 18th, 2010 -- August 31st, 2011.
348 days.

This deployment was one of the best things that has ever happened to us--that has ever happened to me. I feel so blessed for the opportunities I have had for the last year. To get to pay off so much debt (just our house and car left!) and build up a very sizable savings account. To be forced to "grow up" and deal with real life. To get to be selfish--my time, my schedule, my friends, my choices. For Matt to get to be promoted quickly and become proficient in his job in a very focused field. To get to know so many wonderful people. To get to know Matt better, because when all you can do is talk on a computer, you learn a lot about the other person. To get to know myself better, and focus on the relationship I have with my Heavenly Father. To get to know me. I like me. :)

Yes, there were hard times. Like the entire month of May. That was my wall. That was my turning point, where I decided that if there was nobody there but me to get myself and Bennett back on track, then I had better get up and do it. It was hard. It was good.

Matt has told me some things about what he did. About what he saw. And it was hard, but it was good.

So when I found myself standing on the homecoming field with our little boy on August 31st, at 10:00 in the morning, it was a little surreal. To be watching as a string of buses unloaded their passengers. To be crying as they walked toward us. To be grateful, so grateful, as we bowed our heads in prayer for those who were returning home, and for those who weren't. To be pushing through a crowd of people, looking, looking, looking. And then there he was. Just like he had never left. And when we finally embraced for the first time in 348 days, all we could say was, "Hi."

50 weeks
1 wedding
14 major breakdowns
2 extended trips to Rexburg
9 major holidays
3 major birthdays
over $40,000 of debt paid off (!!!)
3 rooms redecorated
1 anniversary
1 funeral
28 weekends spent doing yards
140 walks with friends at night
1 promotion
24 paydays (and 24 bill days)
348 nights alone
countless moments of both sadness and joy

For the last year I have left an old pair of Matt's shoes sitting in the entry hall. I don't really know why. Maybe because I needed a daily reminder that he really was going to come home one day to fill them again. Yesterday I watched as Matt put those old shoes on and walked around the house "tinkering." Bennett was at his side, holding his hand and talking away about the bumble bees. Best buddies.

And I am happy.
So happy.
348 days.

We did it :)