Saturday, June 28, 2008

5 months, wow!!!

Reese turned 5 months old on Thurs. I've been trying for 3 days to post some pics of our growing boy, but every time I sat down to do it, I found something else I should be doing. I apologize for those who have been asking for pics. He's doing well, growing like a weed. He now weighs well over 18 lbs and is at least 24 in long. He's cutting some teeth and eating baby food. Still not sleeping through the night, but at least not fully waking up now. Here are a few pic of our little man! Enjoy!!!

This outfit was Cory's when he was a baby! Don't you just love that face?
Look how big! He's almost mastered sitting up with NO support from us!

Our baby Shrek!! As you can see he drools quite a bit and he's ALWAYS chewing on those fingers!
Daddy and son.
This is how we started. Where did all that hair go?

Monday, June 23, 2008

Monday Madness

Just wanted to take a moment and update you guys on what's happening here in the "Hood". Reese is cutting teeth (or so I think). He's miserable and nothing really seems to help him. I'm doing Tylenol, OraGel, Teething rings, and I've even gone so far as to stick my fingers in his mouth (cleaned of course) to massage his gums. He's even more clingy that usual (that means I can do NOTHING without him) and doesn't want to sleep. Anyone have any ideas on what I can do? He's pitiful and I'm exhausted!!!
Cory is busy getting ready to deploy. He's getting vaccinations for all sorts of fun stuff like Anthrax & Small Pox and is starting his regimen of Malaria pills today. They've pushed his leave date back a few days so I get to spend some more time loving on him before he goes - OH YEAH!! He's getting nervous as we've heard that the advanced party (that left a few weeks ago) has already had to use their weapons when they were attacked while convoying to the FOB (base where they will live). However, we both seem to have a peace about the whole deployment thing - which makes our last days together much more enjoyable. We know that its in God's hands and what will be will be - why worry about it now! Its hard to believe that its only a few weeks away!!
The girls are having a blast with Grammie and Pappie! They are attending a day camp at a local church and LOVE IT!!! They have also been taking swim lessons - they jumped off the diving board into the deep end with NO life jacket! (Can I just add here that I am sad that I didn't see this, but glad as well because I have become quite the neurotic mother here lately!) I am so proud of them and miss them terribly, but luckily they are staying busy!
Thanks to the generosity of Cory's parents (or it may be that because Reese has been fussy everytime they've talked to us), the dogs will fly out of Austin on Friday, our car will be picked up for transport on the 7th and I will fly out of here on the 9th! This has taken so much stress off Cory and I because now we don't have to worry about me driving 17 hours with the baby and two dogs! I think Cory's dad realized that it would be a trip from Hell since Reese absolutely hates his car seat now. Either way - I love it and feel truly blessed to have such a wonderful family that is willing to do whatever it takes to get us home safely and quickly!
We've got house guests again - but this time they are AWESOME!!! Its one of Cory's friends in his unit and his wife, Donna! I'm glad to have another Army wife here with me to deal with the chaos - and to have an extra pair of hands to help me pack!!
On that note - I've packed NOTHING! I hate packing and unpacking. I always put it off until the very last chance!!! The movers will be here next Thursday - YIKES!!! Maybe tomorrow I'll get busy! :)
The house buying is idle right now. Our mortgage broker is on vacation until this weekend. But everything has gone smoothly. Inspections are done, appraisals are done, processing paperwork is done, now we just wait for the bank to do what they are going to do! I am so excited and can't wait to move in (get ready to come for a visit - I need someone to keep me busy)!
So that's it. We're just busy trying to prepare ourselves for the upcoming transition. Hope you all are doing well - I've noticed we've all been slack with blogging (must be the summer). Have a great week!

Monday, June 16, 2008

For those of you in the Upstate of SC

Go here to see how some of your local youth are starting their Summer! Please pray for these guys as they are doing God's work in your community!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

He didn't have to be...

This post is dedicated to all the men in the world that have become a Dad to a child who is not biologically his. I remember faintly the first time I met John, my stepdad. I think my earliest memory of him was when he rented movies for us all and we watched them in the living room. If I remember correctly, he was one of the few men my mom dated that allowed us to actually do stuff with them. Maybe I just don't remember anyone else. Then I remember when we went to Disney World - I can actually only recall two events from that day: 1) We stood in line for what seemed like forever for Space Mountain and I refused to get on it at the last minute. I had to wait at the end of the ride by myself. 2) I was super tired (and whiny, I'm sure) and John carried me on his shoulders from the park to the car. I have scattered memories from that point to when I was in high school. I will be the first to admit that I was not the greatest teenager, but he handled it in stride. He came to EVERY activity I participated in. When I was a band dork, he was there with a HUGE sign - he was such a proud band parent. He traveled to NY and California just to see me ( and my brother) march in a parade. He has always been supportive of the activities I chose to participate in. Then when I became pregnant, after his initial reaction of shock, he once again stepped up to the plate and took care of me. I remember when the girls were born; it was the first time I had seen him cry. He came to the hospital each and everyday to help with the feedings in the NICU. He helped me paint the nursery and even pulled a nightly shift with the girls when they came home. He opened his home to us and provided for our little family relentlessly while I was in school. He has taken the girls on EVERY vacation they've ever been on because I was either working or in school when they went. He gave me away on my wedding day. He always provides a wonderful meal when our family has a special occasion. He flew the girls out to Texas (and left them - which was a shocker, lol) He has been not only my father figure for 18 + years, but was the girls father figure for the first 5 of their life. Though times were tough occasionally in our family, John has alway strived to be the Christian leader, father and provider for our family. He will never know how much he means to me. The list could go on and on of all the things he has done for me and my family, but because he is the humble man he is, I will not embarass him any further, LOL. He is a wonderful father and what makes him even better is that he didn't have to be!
I can't let this day go by without recognizing my husband, Cory. He too has stepped up to the plate and been an outstanding Dad. He has taken on the parenting role without hesitation. I can't remember the first time he actually met the girls, but all I know is that pretty much from the start the girls were in love with him. When we got engaged and began to plan our wedding, I remember people would ask them what they were getting for Christmas (our anniversary is Dec. 26) and they would respond with "I'm getting a Daddy" and after Christmas they would tell everyone "I got a Daddy for Christmas." Cory, too, has taken the trials of parenting in stride and continues to be a pillar of strength for our family. The girls know only him as their father and love him unconditionally. They love their soldier daddy. I also remember when we found out we were pregnant with Reese, it was early in the morning when I took the test and when I got back in bed he rolled over and I said, "honey, we're pregnant". He opened his eyes ever so slightly and replied, "really?!?" kissed me and went back to sleep. When he woke up he had a glow on his face that was unmistakable. Now he has a "mini me" and loves him to pieces. Although Reese is trying most of the time, Cory continues to face each day with the determination to make our little man happy!!! To see him with his kids warms my heart and breaks it all the same. I know that there will be a void in our kids lives for the next 15 months that I will never be able to fill. I know that the girls will always look to him as their Dad and will always be proud of the sacrifices he has made. Reese too will be proud of his Dad; thankfully, he will not remember this time! He too is a great Dad; always giving, sacrificing and doing the best he can to be a good role model for his kids.
To John: Thank you for being who you are and where you are - always standing right behind me! I hope you are proud of me and my family and that each and everyday you walk through life knowing that you "hung the moon" for at least 2 little girls!!! You are one of the greatest men I know. I love you! I hope you have a wonderful Father's Day!
To Cory: You are my husband, but most importantly, you are the Father to my children! I am so proud of you and though I will never be able to take your place in our children's lives, please know that I will do everything I can to ensure they will not forget who you are while you are away. You are their hero and mine as well!! We love you and will miss you, but keep in mind this is just a small amount of time compared to the rest of our lives! Thank you for being a Dad, when you didn't have to be! I love you!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Olive branches

Some people are unaware that my relationship started out kind of rocky with my inlaws and has been an up and down mountain ever since. I think we may have overcome the majority of our differences at this point, but the next 15 months are going to be the true test. I have put everything behind me - I think and today they showed me they had put everything behind them. Cory's dad, Mike was originally going to fly out here to ride back with me to SC after Cory left. He recently realized what a difficult trip it would be with a broken hearted daughter in law and a grandson who HATES his car seat. So he has offered to fly me, Reese and the dogs home to SC as well as foot the bill for our vehicle to be shipped! What a God Send! Cory is relieved knowing that now he doesn't have to worry about me driving and something happening. Thank God they (Cory's parents) have some money they don't mind just throwing out there! What an answered prayer for us! So I'll be flying in July 9 - can someone bring me a box of tissues?? Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Hump day

I'm glad to announce that Reese is feeling better after 10 days of being miserable. He still has a pretty nast cough, but at least now he can breathe. Maybe now I'll get some sleep.
Cory is still feeling yucky. Hopefully in the next day or so he'll be on the up swing. Please continue to pray for his unit. Yesterday he was given the assignment to be a road guard during the Brigade run this morning. He showed up at the assigned place in the assigned uniform only to be told that another company was supposed to do this duty and that we was supposed to report somewhere else. There is NO communication between anyone in his unit. So there is a total lack of confidence in the communication that is necessary in a war zone!!
The house is coming along relatively smoothly - despite a minor speed bump yesterday. Hopefully we'll be closing in the next 45 days!!! Yeah!!! Break out the paint brushes and moving gloves - I'm gonna need all the help I can get!
I am considering doing some volunteer work with an organization called CASA. It was laid on my heart last week and I've been praying about it. I'll post more about this organization later. I could never do the foster care thing, but this is a way to help those same kids, just in a different way!
Packing begins this weekend - NO FUN! I've got less than 3 weeks before the movers come, I better get busy!
Hope your week is going well! Happy Hump Day!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Monday Migraine

I can't believe its Monday. I'm sorry I've been a bit slack with blogging lately, but Reese is sick, and Cory is getting sick, we've got house guest issues, Cory had a three day weekend this past weekend and we've decided to purchase our house without a realtor (great money saver, but we have to do double the leg work) - needless to say, I've been busy.
I took Reese to the MD today. He's not feeling any better and today was his 4 month check up. No infections - Thank God! Apparently he's just got a cold. He's weighing in at a whopping 17lb 11 oz (95 percentile), 26 in long (75 percentile). Still looks just like Cory. I have to laugh when people say to me "He looks like you" (when Cory's not around, mind you) - all I can do is smile and say "You haven't seen his Daddy". He's sleeping in his room now - due to our house guests (more on that later). No teeth yet, but it should be soon! Hopefully I'll find some time to post pics soon.
The girls started Camp today. They are going to a Summer camp and have been SO excited. I haven't decided if they'll go the entire month of July because it is ridiculously expensive, but for now, it helps out my mom while she's at work. Boy do I miss them!!!
Cory had his 2nd Anthrax shot today - OUCH! So now, if we receive any suspicious letters in the mail with any sort of white powder substance, he can open it for me!!! He shaved his head last night - SO SEXY!!! (TMI, I know - but I like it!)
Today I turned in my 30 days here at the house and arranged for the movers - I guess I need to start packing! Its all becoming real to me and I don't like it. I'm not ready to do this; to be all alone again and have to carry these burdens alone. But I'll make it, I know!
So that's it for now. Sorry this is so scatter brained. I have a serious migraine and can barely see straight! Hopefully I'll post pictures soon! I've got some good ones to share of our trip home and the suprise Cory gave me yesterday - SO SWEET! I'm off to try and get some sleep, before Reese wakes up, again! Have a great week!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Friday 5

I can't believe its already Friday. This week has totally flown by. I've got a ton of things to do this weekend, so today's Friday 5 are five things I've got on my plate...
5. Cory woke up with a rash ALL over his body this morning. We called our friend Doc to come and give his some benadryl, so I've got to take care of him - its really weird!!!
4. Reese still has a cold. Bless his heart, his nose is all stopped up and his throat is really sore. So I'll be carrying him around all day in his Snuggly.
3. Tomm we are heading to Dallas for a wedding - that is if everyone gets better. I've got to go buy a wedding gift and something nice to wear.
2. I've GOT to go to WalMart today - don't be jealous. Reese needs formula and our local stores do not stock enough of it at once - I have to buy at least 10 jugs at one time because he drinks one a day. I hate WalMart and have put it off for long enough!
1. Gus is at the Groomer - I can hear him barking all the way from here, lol! He has to be shaved since its so hot here. So I'll be going to pick him up in just a little bit.

There have been some interesting developments about the house. Hopefully now, things will start moving a little more swiftly. I can't wait to share the whole story when we have a happy ending. Cory has received his "official" orders. He's leaving on or about July 3 - what a Happy Independence Day! So maybe, with a ton of Caffeine and a lead foot, I can make it home for the 4th!! We'll see.
I'm off to get busy with my list of "to do's". Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Home, not so sweet, home

So we made it back to the Hood. It was such a LONG drive. I've told Cory that after Saturday (we have a wedding to go to in Dallas), I refuse to drive anywhere out of the city limits. If I can't get there in 5 mins, its out! I am so sick of being in the car. Reese did relatively well - until the last couple of hours! He absolutely hates his car seat now! I can't say I blame him. He's got a bit of a cold. Yesterday, the MD checked him and noticed his throat was really red. She ran a rapid strep test, it was negative - THANK GOD! But today he's had congestion, sneezing and coughing! YUCK! I'm gonna try and hold off taking him back to the Clinic here until next week - we've already got an appt scheduled for his 4 mth checkup. I just hate taking him to the doctor for them to say there's nothing they can do!
Cory goes back to work tomm. Pray for him - he's going to receive a lot of heat for something that went down while we were in SC. I'll save the details for later - later when I can hopefully post something positive about it!
On a house note - looks like there are more hurdles to jump. The loan is good - thanks to our AWESOME Mortgage broker. Now, we (myself and the broker) have busted our tails to get things done and the Real Estate lady is dragging her feet. I am afraid that the sellers may be getting cold feet! SO we're not in the clear yet! So keep those prayers coming!!!
Hopefully I'll be able to post pics soon - when I have time to upload them onto the computer!!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Texas, Tricare, Travels

Yesterday, the girls, Reese and I loaded up the Kia to head to G'ville for a little bit. By the time I hit 85, I realized there was NO AIR blowing. The air was out. I've only had this vehicle for one year and this is the 2nd time this has happened! So I called the Kia Dealership and told them they HAD to work me in because we are leaving for Texas today and 17 hours in the car with a 4 month old with NO AIR is just not do-able! They worked me in, thank God and fixed it for FREE (boy, do I love that word). We're leaving tonight - YUCK!
While we were at the Kia place waiting, I got a call from our new mortgage lady (long story), WE'VE BEEN APPROVED!!! Yes, you read that right! After 3 long months and many tears and losing my religion a couple of times, someone has finally redeemed my faith in the banking business. Hopefully by close of business today, we'll have signed a new contract on our house and can go back to Texas with confidence that we have a home when we return! Praise GOD!
So today I wake up and Reese has a fever; just my luck! He was a bit fussy yesterday and felt warm, but I thought he could wait til we got back to see a Dr. After 2 hours of him screaming this morning, I made the decision to try and see our Pediatrician here. Anyone who has dealt with Tricare knows what a pain it is to see a Dr. who isn't your PCM. After an hour on the phone with Tricare, Dr. Shelley, and our PCM at Fort Hood, we've finally got an appointment for this afternoon. I don't think its anything bad, I just want to make sure before we hit the road tonight!
So that's the excitement for us today. Cory's sleeping to prepare himself for the trip home. I'm running around like a chicken with my head cut off; packing, holding fussy baby, and making sure everything is squared away here for the girls since I will be gone for at least a month. I'll try to post an update on Reese before I leave, if not, once I settle back in in the Hood, I'll be sure to post!!! Happy Tuesday!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Quick Recap

I just realized I haven't posted since Tuesday and I'm sure you're all sick of seeing that MeMe. Sorry, we've been super busy trying to load up all our time with fun stuff to make the most of our leave. So here's a quick recap: Wednesday was a lazy day interrupted by crisis at the Harter house that involved a strange man with a Dawn dish detergent bottle. I went and hung out so that I could "deal with him" if he came back. Thursday, we headed out to Sam's Club (note to self: must buy membership ASAP), WalMart and then the girls had their first Horse riding lessons (bartered for John's BBQ, I might add); then it was off to the Traynham's for dinner. We had such a wonderful time and met the breeders of our future German Shepards!!! Friday we went out to Old Mexican (as the girls call it) with one of Cory's most faithful and dearest friends, Trevor and his family. Saturday, Cory got up SUPER early to go to the shooting range with Trevor. Amy and I headed out to G'vegas to do a little shopping; Reese, bless his heart was miserable (he's like his daddy, he hates shopping). Then we headed over to Jon and Lori's for dinner - fun times!! Then today, Sunday, after a great service where the church was gracious enough to pray for Cory and I specifically during their prayer time, we headed out to Starr (that's where Cory's from) for a family dinner in Cory's honor. I ate so much that I don't think I'll eat for at least a couple of days. It was great, but kind of sad as Cory had to say goodbye to his family for at least a year! Tears were shed, hugs were plentiful, and the food and fellowship were priceless!!
So that's it in a nutshell. I'm off to bed as I am EXHAUSTED!! I have done really well with taking pictures, so I can't wait to post some for everyone to see!! Hope you all had a great weekend!
Hopefully tomm will bring good news about the house situation - we've got our finger's crossed!
Have a great week!