roses

Enjoying a season of change

Fall is in full bloom, with the changing of the colors and the onset of cooler temperatures.  This past weekend was a magnificent example of this with God’s beautiful artwork on display as we traveled up to southern Indiana to visit with both of our families. Originally planned as a trip to help my mother winterize her home and enjoy visiting, our trip was updated to allow everyone have a chance to meet and encourage our son before he heads off to Marine basic training.

granny pappy

Saturday morning was filled with delicious foods, courtesy of Bob Evans on the south side of Indianapolis, with my wonderful mother and father in law. Watching their joy and pride in Alex as they shared conversation with him about times past, memories of his childhood, and things to come was so warm on such a cool day outside.  Minutes turned to hours, as they often do when you are enjoying yourself. Before long we were embracing each other and saying our goodbyes. The smile on our son’s face could not have been changed.  The happiness he felt was obvious without words. Our time together filled his heart with encouragement and faith in his abilities.  Our son was blessed with all that we we had hoped for, and as usual, so much more.

Saturday abloomsfternoon was filled with outdoor chores.  Sounds much more difficult when I say it that way.  Considering we were working together outside in a comfortable setting, the simple manual tasks actually were completed with a minor amount of effort and quite a bit of fooling around.  Happens quite a bit when you are working with me. Late afternoon led into early evening and my mother’s cooking efforts in the kitchen preparing a special meal were starting to permeate the house.  My brother,  his better half Linda and his son Craig came over and we all enjoyed another wonderful home cooked meal. As usual there was lots of fun conversations and teasing, with no individual being spared. My brother Mark is a Navy veteran, we are very proud of his service, and were blessed at having the chance for our son to enjoy time with him. Our son was again filled with certainty of his decision, and of his capability to succeed. I am not certain, but it appeared his chest may have even grown over the length of the day.

mom and alex

Evening soon came, and then morning and unfortunately time for us to depart back towards home. Seems to come quicker each time. My mother showered our son with so much love and special treatment this weekend, we had a real tough time getting away. She also provided him was uplifting and encouraging words and efforts, that made our hearts swell.

You see, this season for our family is really on of changing.  We are counting down the days before departure to basic training. It is single digits. So blessed to have been able to provide Alex with the time and encouragement from all of his family. So thankful for their faith in him.  So thankful for their kind words.  So thankful for their love for him. These are things we all share in a huge way.

Just like nature outside is in the middle of a beautiful change, so is our son, and so are we. Isn’t it truly beautiful!

colors

 

 

Ready for him to leave, but not as ready as I thought…

Our son has been preparing for his Marine basic training for over a year. Well, that is not completely true. He has been preparing for this departure since his freshman year of high school ROTC. His ship date for basic has always been far off.  It seemed far off. Not that it was necessarily set in stone, but far off enough that I was comfortable. Comfortable that I would eventually be able to deal with him leaving home.  Always I have been so proud of his choice. Why I did not carry through with my chance to join the Air Force when I came out of Purdue I will never fully understand. I tell you that I know he has made the right choice. In his heart and soul he has been a Marine since he started. He entertained the idea of possibly the Army at one time, but it was brief. He has overcome.  He has persevered.  He is my Marine.

All of this to say that when his recruiting Sargent called today to tell him his ship date was moved up to the very near future, I realized I am not ready. He is going to be an excellent soldier.  He is committed and disciplined.  He wants to serve and to make us proud. He has worked very very hard to be where he is at this time. He has always been in God’s tender arms and I know that God will continue to look over my Christian soldier.  The reason I am struggling is that I understand that I will not be able to walk down the hall to give him a hug. To stop into his room to see the newest Minecraft or Destiny story line. Not able to take him for a ride into town on a whim and grab some food or treat. You see I am feeling selfish and not ready to let him go.

I am going to miss my son.  So proud am I. So blessed am i.  So sad to know this first phase of his life is coming to an abrupt end.  I love him.  I am proud of him.  He is my strong soldier.  I must be his strong father. Alex thank you for all the wonderful memories. We will have a lifetime of many more to come, but it is time for your Dad to accept and be happy. God grant me the strength. – G

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Our Hero’s, Young and Old

 We lose, but look back and see we won.

We take it to heart, that they did not run.

We fight for what has always been right, to find out no one remembers the fights that were fought to give us these rights.

We stand up for what we believe in, to find no one stands behind them.

We see hopes and dreams become cries and screams.

We say a prayer, and watch it travel in the air from here to there.

We know there is hope, love, and sorrow.

We watch them so tall, not ever wanting to see them fall.

They are our children and their children. Our sons. Our daughters.

We cry, we weep, we pray a lot longer.

Along come more that head out the door.

They are strong and young and brave,

As we have raised them,

With love for their country.

Being All That They Can Be. Army.

The Few The Proud. Marines.

Honor Courage Commitment. Navy

Aim High…Fly/Fight/Win. Air Force

Semper Paratus. Coast Guard

Standing strong for those that have come and gone.

Our Hero’s, young and old,

We thank you.

 

Play Hard Eat Good Drive Fast!

My husband’s work rented out Music City Indoor Karting last Friday night, October 3,2014.  Located downtown Nashville in a renovated warehouse. You can reach speeds of 45 mph and each race is 7 minutes long!

Dress was casual, but I did my makeup and chose jeans, tank, belt,and long sleeved shirt left unbuttoned. You have to wear closed toe shoes, so I wore sporty New Balance shoes. My husband was coming from work, so he was dressed up. I brought him a polo shirt to change in to.

When we walked in, the sign read closed from 5-8 for private party. That was us!!!!! We were pretty excited and a little nervous. We have been go- karting before plenty of times, but never on a test track.  We had to sign a waiver stating we would not hold them liable if we got hurt. My little heart was beating a bit fast, I admit. I know me. I know  I like to push the pedal down and not look back. This certainly did not mean I won a race against others, but I loved the thrill and started laughing and my husband and I chased each other around the track.

After we signed the waiver, an instructor gave us a brief safety lesson. One was- This is not bumper cars. No bumping of another car. Then we were given a head sock and grabbed a helmet,assigned a car, strapped ourselves in, and sat for a minute till they motioned us forward.

Zooming around, and weaving through the track, was exhilarating and relaxing somehow. I felt somewhat free and thought why? Because I was Playing!

I know we raced more than 4 times and our arms were getting sore and our throats were dry. Each time we could go to the front desk and tell the helpful, sweet staff that we wanted to race again and then we got our printout of our scores.

After playing hard and racing fast, we went to sit down and eat. And did we eat good! The food was catered by Martini’s BBQ. Oh my gosh! It was so very tasty and I was so starving!! I loved the baked beans, potato salad, and the prime rib. I want to go there for a date and get pictures of my plate!

When the night was calming down, and we were tired, and wound up, and full, all at the same time, we decided to start home. Before we left, we sincerely thanked my husband boss and his sons for such a wonderful evening.

As we drove, we made plans to take our son to race. We started planning and mentally going through our calendar of time left before he leaves for Parris Island for the Marines on December 15, 2014. Let him get in some races with his Dad! I will take the pictures and preserve some memories.

27 Days

I could try to be more creative on the title of my blogs, but it is just what it is. Our son leaves for Parris Island in 27 days and our family and friends could not be more supportive. We have been to Disney World twice since my last blog, had his graduation from high school, and went a few times to visit his Grandma and uncle in Indiana. We tried running with him and I ended up injured and looked like Tim Conway playing the part of the little old man that shuffles around on the Carol Burnett show. We still walk with him and I will get back in to running. We play the Harry Potter Clue game and watch the Clue movie which is a long-standing family tradition,we listen to and watch him play all his different video games, go to the movies and pig out on popcorn,and look at old family photos and smile remembering the great times we have had. I eagerly wait for him to share the latest Robot Chickens he has watched. I laugh harder when he tells about them, rather than actually watching one. We listen to him repeat every documentary word for word and I know he must be some kind of genius. He memorizes everything, he is interested in everything. We promise we will not cry till he leaves and we now call him a man ever since he graduated. We talk about being just the two of us and at first this kind of scared me. What the heck was I suppose to do? I have come to live for dirty clothes and dishes, running everybody everywhere,and being so rushed each day, but somehow pulling it together at the end of the day. But who cares about this now??!! What we are so excited about is making our children proud of us! Starting with us as a couple. Very strong in our love,marriage,and future and adding to our talents and changing who we are,too. So there have been some sleepless nights and long days and many many conversations on us breaking out of the rut of get up,coffee,devotions,work,supper,movie,sleep,start over again. Now the pressure is on! We have only 27 days left to really encourage each other to step out of our comfort zone and start writing, reading more, and beginning new businesses together and separately. Our big goal is to provide land for our children, become full-time RV travelers, and have a way to be together 24/7. Forever.

jennifer and alex

68 Days Go Alexander!

Getting armed with notebooks, pens, calendars, menu’s, decorating ideas, and other blogs here on WordPress.

I have started a board on Pinterest  labeled Marines The Few The Proud.  I love that people share their ideas for letters and gift boxes and encouragement all around the world on Pinterest and other sites.  Go ahead and check out my Pinterest and my FacebookJennifer New 

Gary found a very wonderful, helpful, informative site usmcgradparrisisland.org.  I can not wait to have some alone time  to learn from this dear lady that worked so hard to inform us parents about graduation day at Parris Island.  The notebooks and calendars are so I can write everything down that is starting to swirl through my head during the day and while I sleep.

Many prayers being sent up, but much more blessings being sent down.

Jennifer love and happiness

75 Days

Dear Alexander,

We are so proud of you. Dad and I love you so much and have always prayed for, and protected you. We prayed for the very best in life for you. We believe there is a path for each one of us. We believe we are to step out  and follow that path. We have seen you take those first steps to becoming a Marine. You have grown stronger both physically and mentally. You are looking forward and you will only look back to see us cheering you on, encouraging you to grow, mature, and become a man. We do not worry because now you pray for us  and you will be the one protecting us, others around you, and your country.  You may never read this because you do not know I started an actual blogging countdown, but here I am with 75 days left and I can not be more proud of you. I love you my smart, handsome, young man that the Lord blessed us with. Momma