Memorable Milspouse Moments Part 2 (AWN Giveaway)

Imagine this: A handful of close friends (or in our case, battle buddies) are miraculously back in the same zip code, be it for a few months or just a few moments.

You gather around the fire pit on the back patio. You pour yourself a beverage of choice (for me, this is Lime La Croix in a wine glass #PartyAnimal) It takes only a couple of seconds before someone says it…

“Remember that time when…”  [Read more…]

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Memorable Milspouse Moments Part 1 (AWN Giveaway)

Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like our military family spends a good deal of our time dreaming about the future. Our next duty station. If/when we will make that next rank. What our next assignment will be. And yes… Even imagining (and sometimes dreaming about!) what life after the army will be.

Oftentimes, thinking about the future can be a great motivating factor, especially when the going gets tough. But you know what? Looking back at where we’ve been, what we’ve experienced and how far we have come can also provide that #GoAmerica fuel we need to face the next milspouse challenge… Or adventure.

And so that brings us to this new Recon Rendezvous miniseries: All about our Most Memorable Milspouse Moments. (Bonus: It’s also a fun tongue twister.)

For the next three first-of-the-month posts, I will be sharing with you one of my most memorable milspouse moments, as well as some military memories submitted by you, our AWN fans and followers.

Let’s get started, shall we?

In the years that I have been a military spouse, I (obviously) have a lot of memories– some very sweet and wonderful, others… not so much. But to get this memorable party started, I think I should share how I got my army wife start.

And yes. I know you don’t have all day. So this will be the abridged version.

I was in college at Kansas State University in Manhattan, KS– forty days from graduation. In my 5 years of college (well, my entire life) I never had a “real” boyfriend. (Don’t get me wrong– I went on a handful of dates, but it was like, “Hey bro, thanks for the supper… But I’m good.” #ColorMeUnimpressed

Anywho: It was literally one of the most painful days of my life that day– lots of super sad, heavy stuff going on (several people in my network of friends/family had passed away that very day.) I had spent most of the afternoon holed up in my room, sobbing my eyes out, grieving for my friends/family.

So the last thing I wanted to do was “go out” that night. But we had some college friend in town from Minnesota, so I rallied (aka, was Voluntold) to be their Designated Driver as they toured Aggieville.

Long story still long: That night, some random dude started dancing with me in a bar. It was his birthday. I was a bit cautious… But we started talking (what?!?!) and the rest, as they say, is history. (That was TOTALLY not part of my no-plan-plan. ) This blonde-haired, blue-eyed infantryman ambushed my heart. (Sorry, couldn’t resist the corny analogy.)

We did the long-distance relationship thing for the remainder of the summer and he deployed at the end of August. He came home in April and proposed, right there in the teeny-tiny Columbus (Missouri) Regional Airport. His brother was home on leave from Germany and had purchased the ring while staying at my house. And I had. no. idea. (He slipped my husband the ring right as Brandon was proposing… My now-husband jokes that he was worried, because he thought he was going to open the box and there was going to be a twisty-tie ring in there.)

I, of course, said yes. And here we are.

So that’s ONE of my many memorable milspouse moments… But enough about me. Let’s check out what our readers had to say on the subject over at Army Wife Network. 

Like what you see? Join the beginning of each month for a link-up and giveaway! Til then– cheers to our memories!

Remembering Jesus,

 

 

“I will perpetuate your memory through all generations; therefore the nations will praise you for ever and ever.” ~Psalm 45:17

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When the Going Gets Tough: Part 3 (Giveaway/Link-up @ AWN)

All good things must come to an end– but not before we go out with a bang! Welcome to our final installment of tips and tricks on how to survive (and maybe even THRIVE) when the going gets tough as milspouses. (Just joining us? Check out our previous posts in this mini-series by clicking here and here.)

Today, my tip for toughing-it-out survival is once again pretty simple. My go to when I start to feel a bit cray-cray? Get. Some. Rest. 

It might sound impossible, but I learned that “rest” can come in a variety of forms, not just catching up on the eleventy-billion hours of sleeping you feel like you are behind on. Yes, it’s true that I do try to take some kind of “nap” several days a week. Much against popular believe, a nap does not need to be 3 hours long to be effective. Even just laying down for 20-30 minutes will do wonders for my body and soul.

Rest can also be shutting off all the noise in the house and just breathing deep for a few minutes. It could be forgoing the to do list and heading to bed right after the kids hit the hay. Try to take things off your “list” to free up a little more space for margin in your life. We are a single-income household and when we were recently preparing to birth our second kiddo, we pulled some strings to outsource the “house-cleaning” a couple times a month. Now I have clean toilets AND my stress level is so much lower… AND I have a little bit of time to rest instead of worrying about how long it’s been since I vacuumed.

But again, don’t just take my word for it. Check out the final (awesome) tips contributed from our AWN milspouse viewers like you by clicking the following link:

When the Going Gets Tough … 

PS: Don’t forget to enter our giveaway and link up!

Going get tough, I get Jesus,

 

 

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” ~2 Corinthians 12:9

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When the Going Gets Tough: Part 2 (Link-up & Giveaway)

You might recall that last month, we kicked off a mini-series about what to do when the going gets tough as a milspouse.

We had such a good time with it, that I didn’t want to stop there. So today, I will be sharing another one of my personal “coping” tips when things are harder than normal for our military spouse lives. And of course, we will also take another look at some great ideas shared by our AWN fans!

So here is my monthly tip on how I deal with life when the going gets tough… I get busy– “Sharpening my saw.” 

No, friends, I don’t get all lumberjack and start building a cabin. But I do take leadership guru Stephen Covey’s advice and take a time-out to sharpen my saw.

Here’s the premise: Two woodsmen are out in the woods, you know, doing woodsmen stuff. (I assume this means chopping down things.) Both are under a deadline to meet a quota. One of them stops periodically to check his blade and take a few precious moments to sharpen it. The other one keeps sawing away, as his blade gets duller and duller. Who do you think is going to be more successful (and less exhausted!) at the end of the day. Yep, the one who stopped occasionally to sharpen the saw.

I do the same thing as a military spouse. My motivated to-do-achiever-self-instinct is to keep frantically pushing forward until I feel like the wheels are about to fall off. But I have learned that the smart thing is to take a break every now and then… Do something that fills my souls and recharges my heart.

It could be huge and profound like taking a couple days away by myself. But that only *maybe* happens annually– if I am lucky. I CAN do something ever couple days or so to sharpen my saw: Read a book for fun, drink a hot tea and watch a show on Netflix post-bedtime, Zentangle,  close my computer and take a couple of hours to window shop downtown, get a “fancy” yet simple lunch and dine by myself, grab a quick coffee with a friend or even drink a Coke Zero in the parking lot of Wal-Mart while scrolling Facebook for 15 precious minutes.

But don’t just take my word for it. See what other suggestions our AWN follows had to say about…

When the Going Gets Tough … by clicking HERE.

I don’t know about you, but this is super motivating (and a great reminder for me too!) What do YOU do when the going gets tough?  Jump in and leave a comment below. (And don’t forget to this month’s giveaway!)

Until next time… Keep calm and soldier on, my friends.

Proud to be a soldier for Christ,

 

 

“You armed me with strength for battle;
    you humbled my adversaries before me.” ~Psalm 18:39

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6 Ways Parenting a Newborn Is Like Being a Military Spouse (Army Wife Network)

Listen VERY closely… Do you hear that?

It’s my own personal internal tick-tock clock as I anxiously await for this New Tiny Human to be born. (I am writing this post a little bit in advance, because hopefully, by the time this post is published in late February, this kiddo would have been evicted and settling into the “real world” in our arms.)

You may recall that last month, I wrote a post about how pregnancy was like being a military spouse.  Well, my love for analogies hasn’t stopped, so today I would like to share 6 Ways Parenting a Newborn is like Being a Military Spouse.

(Sidenote: The kid we are preparing to birth is our second Tiny Human… so I am also tapping into all the things we learned in Round #1 a few years ago.)

Let’s hop to it.

1. Both parenting a newborn and being a milspouse are MESSY jobs. 

And I mean that very literally. Those of you who have ever had a newborn in your home, you are probably picking up what I am laying down. The amount of laundry that results from the bodily fluids that just seem to ooze out of someone so tiny are almost mind blowing. And sometimes, bless my dear husband, I think the same about him! The sand tracked in on his boots. The smell of unwashed ruck-marching feet and B.O. Random pieces of TA-50 scattered in every room, every vehicle, every nook and cranny of our abode. Yes, both are physically messy… but they can both be emotionally messy too…

Want to keep reading about the other 5 ways these experiences are similar? Jump on over to Army Wife Network. 

Also, don’t be shy– if this post made you grin, be sure to leave me a comment. (I always love reading your feedback!)

Blessings to you all- whether you are in a season of parenting a newborn (or not) or living the military wife life (or not.)

All For Him,

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“As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you; and you will be comforted over Jerusalem.” ~Isaiah 66:13

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The “Missing” Factor (Army Wife Network)

We’ve all heard that oh-so-delightful <sarcasm here> quote, “Absence makes the heart grow fonder.”

Several years ago, this quote always ticked me off. Mainly because I wanted my dearest, darling, most-handsomest-stud-of-a-new-husband around all the time.

Most of our courtship was long distance, a few short months living four hours apart, then 12 months of a deployment.  By the time our wedding day rolled around, I was over the “absence” part and all geared up for some lovely together-til-death-do-we-part time.

But we all know how the army rolls. And my new stage five clinger self didn’t take it well. [Read more…]

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