Sunday, October 26, 2008

9 mths old

Reese turned 9 mths old today. I can't believe how fast time is going by, but I"m not complaining. He is such a handsome guy and full of personality. He looks more and more like his Daddy everyday - what a blessing and a curse. He has added so much to this family in such a little time. The girls adore him and he keeps me on my toes! His Daddy's missing a lot, but thank God he'll never remember this time! Happy Day, Bubba! We love you!

Reese not even a day old.Reese 9 mths old.

Saturday, October 25, 2008


My sister in law shared some of her heart here the other day. While I hate to hear that anyone struggles with ANYTHING, especially my family, it gave me some comfort to know I'm not the only one who struggles with anxiety and worry. Unlike Annie, I am not usually a worrier. I was at one time, but for several years, I've just been a go-with-the-flow, whatever happens happens kind of girl. I think I've let go of a good bit of the "control" that I wanted to have over the world. Over the six months, my life has been plagued with anxiety. I've shared my struggle on more than one occasion. While I am sad to report that anxiety is still a major part of my life and I've had to seek medical attention for it at this time, this post is about a new "disease" I've created for myself... guilt.
As some of you know, Cory has been moved from his initial FOB to a larger,"safer" (I use that term loosely as I know he is still in a war zone) place. Let me preface the rest of this post by saying - I AM SO GRATEFUL TO GOD THAT HE SAW FIT TO PUT CORY WHERE HE IS!!! He is getting the treatment he needs for his shoulder, he is with one of our closest friends, and he is in a much larger place (which translates into safer where he is). He is doing a job that is allowing his shoulder to heal properly (at least relatively) and he seems to be with a good group of people. What more could I need, right? At least if Cory is not with me and the kids, he is with one of the only other people I trust with Cory's life - and is getting some form of treatment... Well, lately, Ive been plagued with guilt. I feel guilty that Cory is "safe" and our other good friends are in harms way daily. This guilt was magnified a million times after watching the clips I posted earlier.
You see, even though Texas was not a great place for us to be, and the Army has not been what we had hoped, we managed to make some pretty awesome friends - I would even venture to say we formed a pretty unique family (a bit disfunctional at times). So when Cory deployed in July, I felt as if I was not only sending my Husband to war, but also my brothers. One of my ways to "cope" was knowing that I had their wives to cry with, vent to and lean on. We were all in the same boat. Of course, things were shook up a bit early on, but soon they settled in, as did we, the wives. We are all in different areas of the country, in different walks in life, but we had one thing in common - our men were fighting in one of the most dangerous places on the planet. Because they were in the same area (not the same FOB, most of them) we had a way to keep track of how they were all doing. Through all the losses our unit has taken, we've found solace in knowing our men had each other to lean on.
But with Cory being removed, whether it be temporary or permanent, I feel guilty. You see, because I care about those men and their wives so much - its ripping me apart to know they are still constantly in harms way and their wives are dealing with that fear everyday. While all of my friends have been wonderful and so thankful that Cory is getting the treatment he needs, I have created a tornado of guilt - sometime's I'm at peace and feeling ok, only to find out that was just the eye of the storm and then I'm tossed into funnel cloud only to have my heart and mind ripped apart.
I hope this does not come off like I am an ungrateful, spoiled brat. I am more grateful than anyone will ever know. I can't even begin to explain the peace I have been given knowing Cory is getting what he needs. I can only thank God for that. This is his doing. And just as I am confident in that statement, I am confident that Satan is plaguing me with this guilt. There is a lot more to this, I just wanted to share a bit of what I'm struggling with this morning (and everyday for that matter). Please continue to pray for me as I take this journey. Pray that God will guard my heart and mind and will grant me peace. I never knew that this would be such a rollercoaster of emotion - even if they are emotions I'm creating for myself (which I know that is what most of this is).
Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.
The courage to change the things I can.
And the wisdom to know the difference.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Does anyone know how to make a slideshow and add a song to it? I have a slideshow made on Photobucket for Cory and I have a song picked out, but I can't figure out how to get it all together. PLEASE HELP ME!!!!!!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Part 2

If you are interested, here is part two of the video that I posted yesterday. This clip does not show Shepler, but it does tell of the tragedy that struck last week. Please pray for Shepler as he was the medic on scene and was in the building that was blown up. He and the other men are having a hard time dealing with all of this. Pray that God will guard their hearts and minds and not let them turn cold. Jeremy is one of the faithful Christians that helped us get through our time in Texas - his wife says he's taking this really hard. Please pray for these men and the other men and women over there!

Monday, October 20, 2008

So thankful

This video is of Bravo Co. 1/26th INF - AKA the Vipers. Cory was with these guys initially and one of our closest friends Jeremy Shepler is there now. This video opened my eyes to what I'm sure is only a glimpse of what they endure daily! I am so thankful tonight, for many reasons, after watching this video. Part 2 will be shown tomm on the NBC nightly news at 6:30 EST. This puts a name with faces and soldiers I've asked you to pray for this whole time. Please pray for Jeremy - or Shepler as we call him. He is in charge of keeping these men well and going - what a huge burden to carry. He does it so well and gives the Army his all. Pray for his wife, Elizabeth. They were married a mere month before she sent her husband to the "Valley of Death". She's such a strong woman and source of strength for me during this time. I love you girl. And lastly, but definitely not least - pray for ALL of the soldiers fighting for YOU and I. THEY are what the Armed Forces is all about. Even though the last month I have been so frustrated with the Army, watching this video makes me so thankful for everything they do. And it reminds me that its not the organization as a whole, but only a select few. God Bless these soldiers, their families and God Bless America!

Sunday, October 19, 2008


I 'm sure you all have heard of this, but I wanted to re-emphasize how important it is. I work in he E.R. at the "big" hospital here in the county and last night we had an incident where we weren't quite sure who to call for the pt. I'm not going to go into detail, even though the person was not technically a "patient" of ours. It was gut wrenching to know that there was no one to call at such a life altering time for this person. I know this is really vague, but I'm exhausted and about to go to bed. Here's what to do:
I.C.E. stands for "in case of emergency". In your wallet, purse, pocket, cell phone, whatever is with you ALWAYS, put a paper with numbers and names to call in case you are unable to call but you are having an emergency. In your cell, put ICE by the names of those who you'd like to call. I assure you, paramedics, police officers, AND staff at the ER will find this info and it will be VERY helpful. In a time you need the ones you love the most, but can't say who those people are - its good to know that those who don't know you will know how to connect with those who do!!! Have a great day!

Friday, October 17, 2008

With great sadness

It brings me great sadness to inform you guys we have yet another fallen soldier. Four in one week. PLEASE, PLEASE PLEASE pray for these soldier's families and the soldiers left behind. I can't even imagine what these casualties have done for morale. They are gone, but never forgotten.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Never any easier

fallen soldier Pictures, Images and Photos
I know I mentioned this here , but I feel these heroes need their own spot. We've lost 4 more soldiers. I've lost count of the actual number and honestly, I'm afraid to look back and count the number of casualties thus far. Please keep these families and the soldiers left behind in your prayers. It never gets any easier.

ABC's of me

Allergic reactions, Broken bones, & Chicken pox. Cory has been gone for exactly a week today. And in this week, I've managed to have some ailment with all three of my kiddos. Monday, Samantha broke her collar bone. Hailey is having an allergic reaction to some meds that's she's taking and has a very unpleasant rash. I took Reese to the Dr today to determine whether or not he has the chicken pox - and that is still up in the air. This is just week one. Its got to get better, right? I've gone back to work as well. The good part of all of this is that I'm so occupied with who needs what when I"m at home, I don't have time to think about how much I miss my love.
On that note, Cory is doing well. I've talked to him twice today - GASP!!! He's seen the Ortho doc. No surgery right now. But surprisingly, I am at peace with that. He's been given another option that in my book is just as good (if not better). I'm not going to discuss what that option is right now, as if I've learned anything from the Army, its been to not count your chickens before they hatch. But things are looking up everyday! GOD IS GOOD - ALL THE TIME!! Its so amazing to me that even though I know he knows I doubt him, he is ever so patient in revealing to me that it's all gonna work out. He humbles us everyday. I struggle with letting go, but he never gives up on me. Thank God for that!
On a side note, could you add to your prayer list the families of 4 more fallen soldiers. Sadly, I've lost count of the numbers of fatalities from our unit. I know its well over 10. I pray the Lord has "lifted their souls, and is healing the hurt" (from Carrie Underwood's "Just a dream" - a song that is absolutely gut wrenching but beautiful).
So that's it for now. I'm off to medicate the kids, clean the house and get dinner going! Have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Angel with a broken wing

Before I try and get some sleep before having to go back to work, I wanted to ask you guys in Blogville to say a prayer for my Samantha. She broke her clavicle yesterday doing a cartwheel. She is pitiful and in a good bit of pain. So as you're going about your day, if you would just lift her up in prayer so that she heals quickly and in as little pain as possible. Thanks you guys!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Picking up the pieces

It's Saturday. Cory has almost made it to his final destination. The kids are busy. I guess its time to pick up the pieces of my broken heart and move forward. I don't really have anything profound to offer today, just some pics that I've been meaning to post. Tomm's goal is to take some pics of our new house for you guys to see. Thank you for your uplifting words and prayers. They mean so much to us all. Enjoy! (They are in no particular order)

Reese showing Daddy how to feed him.
Reese loves to sit at our back door and "talk" to the dogs. Maybe he's the next Dr. Dolittle.
The girls celebrated their 7th Bday with a cooking party. That white blob in front of Sam is Pepperoni Bread - YUM!!!
Hailey with her Pepperoni Bread.
We also painted plates and cutting boards. This is Ansley. Also, notice the kitchen set. We got it at a yard sale! I'll take better pics soon. (It was such a bargain)
Hailey getting ready to play soccer. She is so talented, I hope she keeps with it!
Reese has graduated to a bath seat. This was a $2 find at a consignment sale! Best $2 I've spent in a long time.
Seeing Daddy for the first time at the airport.
The girls ran across the airport to get their Daddy - it was so cute!!! They were so excited!
Finally a COMPLETE family! What a happy day! This was Cory coming in. We didn't get any pics of the goodbyes (it was NOTHING to celebrate).

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Heartbreak on the Homefront

Cory left today to head back to Afghanistan. It was a shock for us because he needs surgery on his shoulder and were expecting for his leave to be extended. We were supposed to see the surgeon who would perform the surgery today and 2 hours before he was to get on a flight, Rear D called and told him he could not stay. Even after our Dr contacted Rear D and expressed his concern for Cory's health and the need for surgery, he still had to go. This time hurts so much more than any other time I've ever had to leave him. I feel like my heart has been ripped out of my chest. We had been reassured that Cory could seek the treatment he needed to fix his shoulder. And to have it come down to literally the "11th hour" was absolutely devastating for us. There is so much more to this story, so much wrong has been done.
So Cory is heading back. Both his spirit and his body are broken. The girls are holding up amazingly well. They've had their moments, but they have definitely been real troopers. Reese was laying in my arms tonight as I was rocking him back to sleep and looking around saying "Dadadada". I'm not sure if it was intentional, but it broke my heart none the less. I think he has gotten used to seeing Daddy. Everytime the door opens, he looks with such excitement only to have it turn to disappointment. As for me, I'm a wreck. This is far more traumatizing for me than any of the other times we've had to say goodbye.
So please continue to pray for us. I know that we will get it together and move forward with our lives. Staying busy and trying to keep it together until Daddy comes home for good. Its gonna be a long 9 mths. The pain is so raw right now. I pray that it subsides as time passes. I'm angry, I'm sad, I'm proud, I'm nauseous, I'm so in love with my soldier. Such is my life. An emotional rollercoaster.
*Dear Lord,
Please keep my love, as well as the other soldiers fighting in foreign lands, safe. Please call your Army of Angels from R&R and have them surround him, guarding him. Please grant him relief from the pain of his shoulder and heal his heart from the brokeness of today. I pray that you grant the surgeons he will be seeing in Afghanistan the wisdom and knowledge to know how to adequately care for his injuries. Almighty, please grant the children and I peace, calm our spirits and guard our hearts and minds while our hero is away. I pray that you guide my steps each and everyday so that I can keep my kids occupied but never let them forget where Daddy is and what he is doing. You are the Knower of all things, the Peacespeaker, the Alpha and Omega. Please place your hand on us as we continue on this journey.
In your precious and Holy name I pray.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

7 years, WOW!

Seven years ago, today, I was in the hospital recovering from having the most beautiful set of twins I had ever seen. I remember when they were delivered, the Dr told me their lungs were great, which was our biggest concern - I was so relieved. I had some complications so I was out of it for a while and when I woke up, the baby warmer was empty. Of course I freaked out. I was told they had been taken to the NICU because they were having "feeding issues". I was devastated. The next two weeks were filled with heading down to the NICU every 2 hours to feed them and cheering them on as they had to take 1oz in 30 min or have the feeding tube put back in. You would never know now they had ANY issues, as they have grown into beautiful little girls.

I feel like we've all grown up together as I was a mere 19 when they were born. I was so young and not ready for that responsibility. But with the help of my AWESOME family, we have made it. We have learned to spread our wings and fly - but never too far from those we love. It has definitely taken "a village to raise these children". They are always surronded by love and give love to everyone they meet.

The past two years have been filled with many uncertainties, but they have taken them all in stride and made the best of every situation. Even in Texas, they won the hearts of all those they met. Often times, they were the ones showing me how to be strong and make it through it all. They have been such a light in our lives and we are so proud of them. As they are "finding themselves" in their different activities, it is so neat to see who they are as individuals. I can't wait to see what they grow into in the years to come.

*Samantha and Hailey, We love you so very much and are so proud of you. Its hard to believe you are 7. Thank you for letting us be your parents and thank you for teaching us new things daily! We hope you have a wonderful day! Love, Momma and Daddy.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

"IT's" back

I blog tonight from a place of MAJOR anxiety. I will refrain from going into detail as I am sure my psyche can not handle living through the thoughts that flooded my mind only a matter of a few hours ago. Things have gotten really bad in the area where Cory and our other men have been stationed. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God brought Cory home so early because had he not come home, he surely would have been hurt or worse this week. I see God's hand in it all but I am SO terrified of Cory going back. Please pray for me and Cory as some news we heard just this evening has rocked us in our inner cores. We are very uncertain of our future and it has really shaken us up. PLEASE PRAY; ask your friends and family to pray. Pray also for the other men stationed with Cory as they have endured the unspeakable this week. Pray for he wives of these men as we are left to try and pick up the pieces of our men's hearts and minds. God is working BIG time in our lives right now. I hope to post more on this soon, but only when I know that I can handle it emotionally.

Friday, October 3, 2008

I AM still alive!

I know its been almost an entire week since I blogged. I've been a bit busy! Just wanted to let you guys know I am still alive. Here's a short list of what's been going on with us!
*We have gotten (sorry for the grammar, Annie) our entire living room/kitchen painted. Well almost - we're missing one wall. Our walls are green and blue -sounds ugly, but I LOVE the green and the blue was already there when we moved it (I didn't want to worry about covering it). The one wall has been left out because Cory has had a mishap (see below).
*The movers found the girl's bike that was missing. I can't remember if I shared this story or not with anyone, but the movers lost our side rails to the bed, legs to our dining room table AND Samantha's bike. They also broke several things and lost a few other miscellaneous items. Its been a nightmare, but the bike has been found and sometime next week we will have an 18 wheeler drive down our road to deliver one purple bike with training wheels - I hope to take pics, I"m sure it will be funny! (a claim will be filed for the rest of the broken/missing items)
*Reese's reflux has gotten (again, sorry Annie) worse. This is NOT a good sign, per the Pediatrician. Usually baby's begin to get better by now, but his is getting worse. He is on some medicine that helps, but if we miss a dose, we can definitely tell. This is making for some LONG nights for us all, plus its making him extremely clingy (more than usual). I feel so bad because I know what it feels like when I have heartburn, I can't even imagine what it must be thinking.
* Cory has hurt his shoulder (again). This is a pretty common occurence for us. He dislocates it on a semi regular basis (well, not regularly, but enough for us not to freak out when it happens). We went to the ER today and he is seeing an Orthopedist on Monday. We're not sure what is going to happen, but we do know that the doctors have all recommended surgery (at least the ones we've seen so far).
* Hailey was nominated to be the Assistant Student "Counselor" (that's what she calls it). She's on the student council is what it all boils down to. She's so proud! I'm not sure why she's the "assistant". I didn't realize that being on the student council was so demanding that they assigned you an assistant :). j/k
* Sam is working on her back hand spring and I am trying not to freak out everytime she falls. That's one of the bad things about being a Paramedic - I can just visualize her falling a breaking her neck and all the bad things that would happen because of that. When she's practicing, I'm constantly running through my ICE (in case of emergency) phone calls: 911, Mom, Amy, John, Traci. 911, Mom, Amy, John, Traci.
*Tonight began the girls Birthday festivities. They're actual Bday isn't until Tues, but no matter how hard we try to keep it low key, it always turns into a long week!!
* The dogs have made the move to the new house (as well as EVERY fire ant in SC - or so it seems). The dogs aren't happy about not being able to see out of the fence (its a privacy fence), and the ants aren't too happy that we keep trying to kill them. Hopefully the dogs will settle in soon and as for the ants, hopefully they will hibernate or do whatever they do soon!!! (what's up with them this year, has anyone else had issues and what did you do?)
*Cory is supposed to leave this week and I am supposed to go back to work. Monday we will find out if Cory is leaving now or later and believe it or not, I'm kind of ready to go back to work! I have really enjoyed the time with my hubby and kids, but I LOVE my job (I truly do), so I'm kind of ready to go back to the "nut hut"!
So that's about it for us! Please pray for Reese that God will give him comfort and that the Dr will figure out what the problem is soon, I know his esophagus has got to be screaming!! Please pray for Cory, that he will find some relief from the pain and that the Drs will make the right decision for treatment (and while you're praying, pray that Cory's Rear Detachment cooperates with whatever outcome and doesn't make things more difficult). Pray for the girls as they are "finding themselves" in their seperate activities. I have been so blessed and I hope you all are doing well. God bless everyone and everything - except those fire ants, UGH!!!