Wednesday, November 30, 2016

He Did It!

4 years ago Kyle decided to start school to get his Masters degree, he took 2 classes and decided to take a break when he took command of a unit because he didn't know how busy his schedule would be. Fast forward to 2 years later and we moved to Louisiana. He decided to pick back up where he left off and just get it done. 

For the last 2 years he has busted his ass working a crazy schedule, balancing family life, and taking classes (one at a time). Well, as of Sunday he received his final grade for his capstone course/thesis and he will graduate with a Master of Arts degree in Psychology and he was able to maintain a 4.0.

Words cannot describe how proud I am of him. While he was taking classes he was constantly running on 2 hours of sleep because of work but he worked on papers, got his reading done, and still spent quality time with us at home. He used to tell me how co-workers would give him crap for reading while sitting in his humvee in the middle of the box when he could have been sleeping but he knew what needed to get done.

(I took this photo after he got his final grade)

He never gave up and that is what amazes me about him. He could have said screw it and pushed it off when he realized how intense his work schedule was but he didn't. 

He is an amazing example of what a great man, husband, father, and soldier should be.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Fun Happenings!

We have been having quite a bit of fun in our neck of the woods lately. My Dad came down last Tuesday to join us for Thanksgiving (and to be oh so kind and watch E for us while we go to the ball on Thursday). We enjoyed good food, football, and just hanging out. E loves snuggling with her papa, I'm so glad she is getting this time with him. I am bummed that my sister and the kiddos couldn't come up but we will see them at Christmas which I'm excited about.

The day after Thanksgiving meant it was time to put up our Christmas decorations! Kyle and my Dad worked on the lights and decor outside and then we tackled the tree. It was so fun helping E put her first Christmas ornament on the tree. See those adorable little deer on the bottom left? My Dad and sister made those (and the snowman too that's behind them), I love how they turned out!

Saturday, we woke my Dad up bright and early to do a Turkey Trot 5k! This was the first race he has ever done and he did so great! He has some knee issues but he said he was not about to give up and we are super proud of him for sticking it out and doing it.

Yesterday morning I was in full marathon mode and got up bright and early to knock out my 12 mile run and it was beautiful out! This is the trail that I run and the ponds and recreation areas are so calming.

I was treated to donuts after I got home and every part of me was so happy haha.

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and a great weekend!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

What I'm Thankful For

I thought it would be fun to do a post about things that I am thankful for. Far too often we focus on the negatives in life and fail to truly appreciate all that we have been given. 

*My husband. Let me tell you how amazing this man is! Yes there are days we are at each others throats, but I would not want to spend my life with anyone else. He is kind, gentle, infuriating, loving, stubborn, and the best Dad!

*My daughter. We have longed and hoped for a baby for the last 8 years and to finally be blessed with this precious Angel is beyond amazing. She is our pride and joy, and we are so lucky to be her parents.

*My family. I have been blessed with a tremendous family. My Dad, sister, niece, and nephew have always been there for me and I couldn't imagine not having them around. We have such a close relationship and I could not be more grateful. They have helped shape me into the person I am.

*My furry babies. Emma and Fishy have been with me for the last 12 1/2 years combined and they will always be my first babies. They have seen me through deployments, moves, and sadness. I love them so very much. 

*My friends. I have a very select group of friends, some that have been around for over 15 years. I am grateful for their love, support, and wisdom. They have helped me through highs and lows, and been there no questions asked.

*My health. I am lucky to have a body that enjoys physical activity, while it is not perfect it has given me an outlet of running in which I can be the best version of myself. 

*My education. I have been given the ability to pursue my education thanks to my husband as well as the Army. I am grateful for all that I have learned so far and hope to use this knowledge in helping others in the future.

*The Army. Too often all we hear is the negatives about the Army. I am grateful for the life it has provided me and my family. We have been able to see and live in places we never thought possible, meet new people every few years, and create lasting friendships that we would not have otherwise. 

Last but not least I am thankful for all of you amazing readers, some of you have become real life friends and I appreciate the love and support over the years!

I wish you all a very Happy Thanksgiving and hope that this day brings you love and joy.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Update On E

I feel like I haven't done a proper update on Miss E. 

This little nugget is growing like a weed! She is a little over 2 1/2 months old and really such a sweet little one. At her 2 month appointment she weighed 10.9 pounds and was 22.5 inches long. She took her shots like a champ, she wasn't fussy and thankfully no fever followed either. 

 She loves being outside, hanging out in her stroller, riding in the car, playing on her play mat, staring at her furry siblings, and being with her family. She will generously give away smiles and squeals with joy. It really is the best! She only gets cranky when she is hungry or wet, which I don't blame her for.

She eats like a beast and is a great sleeper. She is usually down for the night at 9:30 and it will sleep until 7:30-8am every night and we are definitely grateful. We even know that it likely won't last but we are enjoying it now haha. She is still sleeping in our room but will take occasional naps in her room because I want her used to the crib when we move her in there for good.

We took her over the weekend to meet Santa and she did so good! She kept staring at him completely confused but he was so sweet with her. I'm glad that we went early enough in the season so that we could avoid the crowds because that alone is enough to make any person drink heavily haha.

I can't believe that time has already flown by so fast. I couldn't imagine what our lives would be without her. She is definitely our little rainbow.

Have a great Monday!

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Family Time

One of my favorite things about living in Louisiana right now is being so close to my family. We are only 7 hours away from my sister, her kiddos, and my Dad. We have been able to spend a lot of time with them and I am so grateful for that. Not many people who live the military life are lucky enough to live close to family. 

A huge perk of running the half marathon was being able to spend the weekend with in Florida. We arrived late Thursday night and enjoyed a lot of quality time together. 

We mostly hung around the house, played Cards Against Humanity, had bonfires, s'mores, put up my sister's Christmas decorations, celebrated my sister and niece's birthdays, and just enjoyed time together. It was awesome. I like weekends where we don't do a lot, we just get to hang out. The kiddos also performed a song for my Dad and Kyle for Veterans Day, and it was pretty much amazing.

Here are a few snapshots of our time.

We had such a great weekend and as always were sad to leave. We will see my Dad next week because he is coming to spend Thanksgiving with us but we will be back in Florida a few days after Christmas to celebrate the New Year together. 

Definitely grateful for family time.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Pensacola Half Marathon

We have been spending the weekend at my sisters enjoying time with family but it gave us the opportunity to run the Pensacola Half Marathon on Sunday morning. My sister had planned on running it with us but she hurt her foot about a month ago that now requires surgery to fix. I'm glad she opted to not do it because we didn't want her hurting it more. We were so grateful though that she and my Dad kept E for us so we could run it.

The weather and the course were absolutely beautiful! The temperature was around 60 degrees when we started and then course took us along Escambia Bay and through downtown Pensacola. There were some brutal hills but also some really amazing flat and downhill areas. There was a full marathon and a 5k as well, I believe there were over 5,000 people who ran this race. This race was focused on those who have served in the military and all active duty had their branch of service emblem on their bibs. It was pretty amazing. 

The course had the perfect amount of water points that included energy gels and electrolyte drinks. There were also live bands playing every few miles along the way as well as high school drum lines. It was such a motivating course and the first 6 miles flew by, I did hit a wall at about mile 10 but I picked back up mile 12 and I was good to go.

I crossed the finish line with a huge smile on my face because I was so damn proud of myself for accomplishing this half marathon after only being 2 1/2 postpartum. It was a perfect race to be our 14th half marathon and 65th race overall!

We are heading home this morning and I'm bummed to be leaving family but we had a great time. I'll recap that visit later this week.

Hope you all had a great weekend!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

The Great Pumpkin Swap!

Every year I looked forward to The Great Pumpkin Swap that Kristin and Becky host! 

Once again I was not disappointed! I was paired once again with Rachel from A Nesting Nomad and I was so excited when I got the email telling me that. I love this girl. She is funny and quirky and someone that I know I would instantly be the best of friends with if we were to meet in person. 

She sent me some wonderful goodies. A tea travel thermos along with some delicious earl gray tea leaves, lip gloss, and hand cream (that is pretty much the best stuff ever haha). She definitely knows and understands my love of tea which is so appreciated. :)

She was also sweet enough to include a few little items for Emmy and it was so sweet of her (one of the swaddle blankets is missing because I was using it haha).

Everyone should go check our Rachel's blog because she is pretty awesome!! 

Thanks again to Kristin and Becky for hosting. 

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Another Weekend Gone

Am I the only one that does not enjoy Daylight Savings?! It's not because we have a baby either, she hasn't been affected by it at all. I hate it getting dark so early, we enjoy our nightly walks and if Kyle is home after 5pm then the walk won't happen now. Boo! 

Anywho....we had another pretty fun and relatively low-key weekend. 

We headed down to Lake Charles on Saturday for a 10k. This is the 3rd year I have run this race and it never disappoints, it is really flat and overall just a fun race plus it benefits the local college's track team. I was cursing the organizers at the start though because it runs right by a local donut shop haha. The smell was intoxicating. I felt good and am gaining my endurance back which is amazing, I will definitely need it when we run the Pensacola Half Marathon this weekend.

Sunday, Kyle spent the whole day working on his capstone paper so E and I headed to Alexandria to hit up the mall and Target. Not much at Target caught my eye (shocking I know) so we headed to the mall for me to look at dresses for our ball. I know what you're thinking, didn't she pick out a dress for the ball already?! Well, I did, but I realized that I wouldn't be 100% comfortable. I ended up at Dillard's and found this:

I am much happier with this choice, it is really comfortable and flattering which I am going for right now because my body has changed so much since having E. Oh and it has pockets hahaha! I can't wait to wear it. Confidence is key!

Overall, it was a really good to just get through the rest of the week so we can head off to Florida for a long weekend. 

Hope you all have a great day!

Friday, November 4, 2016

Life Lately

How is it already November?! This is crazy to me. I haven't done a proper update in a while so here we go.

* Kyle and I both are finishing up week 5 of our classes and I feel like it has flown by. It's hard to believe that he will be done with school at the end of November and I will be done in March. I have thoroughly enjoyed my current classes, especially my ethics and standards class.

*We have been hearing rumblings that Major promotion list is going to come out some time before the end of November. Let me tell you how excited that makes me, we are so ready to see Kyle's name on that list and find out for certain where the Army is taking us. 

*I started marathon training this week, I am using an accelerated 12 week program and so far it has been great! The races that we are running in the coming weeks actually fit in pretty well with training. I feel good which is the best part, my endurance is coming back, so everything is falling into place. I am able to run without E some days thanks to Kyle's schedule but running with her is fun. :)

*We are heading to my sister's house next weekend and I can't wait. I'm looking forward to enjoying the long weekend with my family, Kyle, and Emmy.

* Our budget is coming along nicely! The way I have it planned right now would enable us to pay off our credit card in March (with help from our tax return) and pay off my car loan the beginning of 2018 (which would be 2 1/2 years early). I am happy that I have been so strict with this because it is setting us up for success.

*Christmas shopping has commenced! I am really hoping to have it done by Thanksgiving but we shall see. 

Not much else is happening in our neck of the woods just taking everyday as it comes. We are running a 10k tomorrow and that is pretty much the extent of our weekend plans, well maybe some school work too.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Special Moments

One of the toughest things about being a military family is being away from family for holidays and fun events however on the other side one of the greatest things about being a military family is meeting so many amazing people! 

We celebrated E's first Halloween with our sweet neighbors, John and Rachel. They have become really good friends of ours and we are so grateful for them. We set up shop in the driveway, and I made homemade chili and hot dogs (chili dogs were such a good idea!!) and set all of that up in the garage. It was nice that we could all eat when we wanted and didn't have to sit down to eat if we didn't want to. 

We had a ton of candy for the kiddos plus we also had small toys (for those with food restrictions) and treats for the furry trick or treaters. We spent 3 hours outside just laughing and having a good time. E did so good and was happy the whole time, she got lots of snuggles, and was enamored by everyone in costumes.

I was so excited for E to wear her costume, I have to say she was a pretty darn cute ninja turtle. Kyle and I joined her as ninja turtles with Emma and Fishy joining the superhero circle as Batman and Batgirl. :) 

Another big milestone is that E turned 2 months old yesterday! Oh my. Time has flown by and she is such a happy happy girl!

I hope you all had a wonderful Halloween!!