One day closer to my hero being home…

359 – Cuzi’s Back!



Cuzi is back!  The kids love him.

They love the kiss (or hug) a day while Daddy’s away.

I love when the bowl starts to look empty.  We have a ways to go right now, but eventually, this bowl WILL BE EMPTY.  Then My Hero will be home.

Cuzi hides in a new spot every day.  When I remember.

The kids LOVE looking for him.

I, however, am out of ideas.  I need suggestions.  Lots of suggestions.  359, to be exact.  Where should Cuzi hide next?  Give me your best ideas!

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Every little boy dreams of being a hero.

Some of them get to become one.

In all seriousness, this man is my hero.  He is brave, thoughtful, caring, loving, and most importantly, he is a man of God.  I love everything about him.  I love the way he plays with our children.  I love the way that he disciplines our children.  I love the way he works so hard for our family.  I love how good at his job he is.  He impresses everyone he works with by his professionalism and ability to solve problems.  I love the way he loves and takes care of me.  He makes me feel like I am the most important person in the world to him.  I love the way he prays and strives to follow the Lord’s leading, both individually and as a family.

I have a serious case of hero worship going on.

Which is why, when I found out he needed to provide his own bed stuff, I couldn’t resist…

I want My Hero to be reminded of how I feel about him every time he sees his bed.  He is my hero.  He ranks right up there above Superman.  Batman takes third.  So yes, while my husband is deployed, he gets to relive his childhood with his own set of superhero sheets.  Go ahead.  Be jealous.

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Or… Here We Go Again

So.  Here we are again.  It’s the end of August, and My Hero is deployed again.  This time, though…. it’s for a year.  12 months.   52 weeks.  365 days.  Oh my.

I don’t expect this year to be easy, but I feel ready for it.  Not because I think I’m superwoman or anything.  I know I’m not.  But I feel like even though we only had a month’s notice for this deployment, we’ve been preparing for this since the beginning of summer, and like God is trying to teach his very dense pupils about HIS provision.

Ever since we moved here, I have coached gymnastics.  The gym has two locations.  One 15 minutes away from our house and one 45 minutes away.  At first, the agreement was that I would only work four days a week, and only at the close gym.  Well, as other coaches quit or moved on, more was asked of me.  Last fall, while My Hero was deployed, I was working SIX days a week, and twice a week, I was in the FAR location.  I had to figure out childcare for my kids, I didn’t get home until late at night, I would drag the kids with me if they were sick… It was rough.  We survived, though, and truly loved coaching the kids.  However, when the summer schedule came out this year, I was on it for more than twenty hours a week, and twice I week I wasn’t even scheduled at the same gym as my son.  This was not what I signed up for.  All the hours were running my health into the ground, and I wasn’t getting enough time with my family.  After much heartache, we made the decision to leave the gym.

We found another gym 45 minutes away that has an amazing boys’ program.  I talked with the owner, and found that not only was she a Christian, she homeschooled her children all the way through high school!  HUGE blessing!  We signed The Gymnast up, and the owner told me that if I decided to coach again, I had a job waiting for me.  After six weeks or so, I couldn’t stand not coaching.  The owners hired me to coach their optional girls (my favorite levels) on beam (my favorite event) three days a week – the three days that my kids were already there.  Three weeks into being hired, we all got sick.  Our attendance was spotty.  One day in particular, I remember calling and telling her that the kids were sick, but I would be there to work.  She replied that it sounded like I was needed at home, and she would see me when the kids were better.

When we found out My Hero was deploying, I went in and told the owner I would need time off.  She responded simply with tell me what you need.  This was like a breath of fresh air!  At the other gym, they almost didn’t let me take a vacation to Disney World with my family when The Hero came home.  Here, all I had to do was ask, and it was given.  God provided me with a job that I love and hours that are convenient for my family.  I don’t have to worry about childcare or scrambling to find somewhere for the kids to hang out.  I DON’T have to go in when the kids and I are sick.  Total peace about working!  God’s perfect provision, and we didn’t even know it when we decided to switch.

Also, last year, I tutored for Classical Conversations.  I LOVED it, but it was tough to find the time to prepare every week.  This year, I was asked to be the substitute and assistant to the director.  It’s perfect!  There is plenty for me to do while I’m there, but it requires very little prep work on my part.  Hooray!  Provision again before we needed it!

Apparently, we hadn’t truly learned the lesson that God would provide for us.  Or at least, we hadn’t learned it well enough.  My Hero left on Monday.  Hurricane Isaac was supposed to hit here Tuesday.  Thankfully, we only received a bit of wind and rain.  However, we still managed to have a mini-disaster.  Less than 24 hours after My Hero left, the kids ran into my room, frantically shouting at me to look out the window.

Our boat lift collapsed!  Need a better view?

Something broke….

I was stunned.  Not even 24 hours before our first catastrophe!  But God had something to teach us.  As soon as I saw it, I called our neighbor.  He was at work, and unable to help.  I called another neighbor.  He didn’t answer.  I sent the kids to his house just in case.  I tried somebody who lived a few blocks away.  No answer.  I called his wife, who called another friend to pick up her husband and bring him here.  In the meantime, the first neighbor was making calls of his own.  Within TWENTY MINUTES of discovering the boat lift’s collapse, we had four men – two of whom I had never met – over here, working on the situation.  Within an hour, the boat was trailered and the lift was secured to the dock.  The men I didn’t know promised to come back after the storm to repair the lift.  The other two promised to come back and flush out the motor after the storm.  The icing on the cake was that not thirty seconds after all was completed, the rain began.  None of us got wet while working on the boat!  When I shared this story with My Hero, he said that he felt like God was speaking directly to him, telling him not to worry.

God STILL wasn’t finished.  The hardest part of the deployment for My Hero is getting on the plane.  It’s a long ride.  To top it off, because of the check out time for the hotel, he had to sit at the airport for 8 hours.  No fun.  However, because he was there so early, he was the very first to check in.  The ticket agent told him that because he was the first to check in, he would get a seat in the BUSINESS CLASS!   So instead of having to sit in the crowded, cramped space of the regular seats, he had (has – he’s still on the plane) a seat where he couldn’t even touch the seat in front of him.

I know it may seem like a little thing, but it made a big difference to My Hero.  On top of all of that, he also saw a guy reading The Case for Christ while waiting for the plane.  He struck up a conversation, and found out that the guy will be working in the same building as him!  So right of the bat, My Hero has somebody to talk to once he gets there.

I believe that this is going to be an incredible year.  I can’t wait to see everything God is going to do!


One Day Closer Science in the Dark With Dad

I love night time.  For many reasons.  There is so much to learn about the world in the evening.  Not that there isn’t a ton to learn about during the day, but it just seems that the night is so much more intriguing.  Perhaps the simple absence of constant stimulation makes us pay closer attention to the world that comes alive after dark, I don’t know.  I do know that science after dark takes on a magical feel.

We (we meaning my children, not me personally) found this little guy in the doorway of our friend’s house.  He provided a full 10 minutes of squeals of delight and fascination, especially for The Gymnast (duh). I couldn’t believe how incredibly tiny he was!!

And, because The Gymnast asked, we made a video of him jumping.

We’re such geeks.  I know My Hero misses nights like this.

Stay tuned tomorrow for Love Letters from a Hero!




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Be Still….

Be still, and KNOW that I am God.

On this day, it is good to remember that this world isn’t forever.  It is good to remember that the God who created the Heavens and the Earth is still God.  He has been here since the beginning of the earth, He is here with us now, and He was here 10 years ago. He will be here with us until the end of the world, whenever that may be.

When the towers fell, our nation was struck with fear.  I saw that fear reawaken this week.  It seemed like the entire area tensed up in remembering that terrible day ten years ago. It’s easy to be fearful.

But we’re not commanded to be fearful.  We are given a spirit of peace.  This peace surpasses all understanding.  It is a peace that lives within those who believe, and the more we dwell on that peace, the more we allow it to overtake us, the easier it is to trust that it will remain, even when we don’t understand what is happening around us.

It is hard to be a military family sometimes.  I still have not watched one 9/11 video today.  I haven’t talked about it with my kids.  It’s hard not to think about the fact that our area has recently lost people Over There.  But even with how heavy my heart has been for the last few days, there are two verses that have penetrated the clouds of sadness and doubt.  One is Psalm 46, which in context is even more amazing.  the other is Isaiah 41:10

10 So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

To have that promise that HE upholds me with His righteous right hand makes all the difference.  Yes, it is tough that My Hero is gone.  It is tough that my body is falling apart.  It is terrifying to think about The Worst Case Scenario.  But HE, the Lord of Lords, holds me up.  He promises to guide me.  He eases my dismay by the mere fact that He is GOD.  Peace doesn’t come because He promises to take away the pain.  Peace doesn’t come because He promises to take away sadness.  His promise is much better than that.  He promises to guide us through the pain and sadness.  He promises to never leave or forsake us. No matter how many things fall apart around us, He will not abandon us.  We don’t have to rely on our own strength.  We can rely on His.



My Kids Rock

See this kid?

And this one?


They’re good.

They saw that I was sad this morning, although they didn’t know why.  No way I’m going to tell them they missed skyping with Daddy because I was too sleepy!!!!

They hid Cuzi for me to find.

They’re good.  I think I’ll keep them around a while.

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Today is Not a Good Day

The best thing about today is that we are one day closer.

Wednesdays wear me out.  We are going from 7:45 in the morning until 8:00 in the evening.  If I forget something, I get to come home for five minutes in the afternoon.  Otherwise we don’t get home until after 8.

Last night, I was blessed by the dear friends who watch the kids while I coach, and I got to have grown up conversation.  The result?  We didn’t make it home until after 10!!  I threw the kids in bed, then crawled into bed myself.  I’m pretty sure I was asleep in less than five minutes.

I slept.


I woke up this morning achy and groggy.  I reached for my phone….

It was 8:00.

I was supposed to Skype (for the first time since he left) with My Hero at 7:30!!!

I missed him. He stayed on for almost 20 minutes waiting for me.  I know because he sent me several emails wondering where I was.  I can’t believe that I overslept.  I can’t believe that I missed our first opportunity to see each other. My poor children have been asking me when they get to skype with their Daddy, and I blew it today.

I know that in the grand scheme of things, this is not a big deal.  I know that we will get another chance.  I know that there are many people families who don’t get the chance to skype. I know I should be thankful we get to talk to him so often.

But it still hurts.

I miss My Hero.


We’re One Day Closer Wrestling With Dad

I think the thing my kids miss most is having somebody to wrestle with.


Somebody they can climb on, jump on, and tackle, but still stay standing.

Wrestling with Daddy seems symbolic, in a way.

No matter how hard they fight….

He always wins.

Funny how much a thing like wrestling Daddy can mean so much.  Everybody knows a Daddy’s arms are the strongest, safest place to be.

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