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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Richard's email - Saturday night our time

No, I can't get into anything but my email out here, and facebook works
from time to time but I don't see myself trying to fight the connection
to check it. Internet only work during the night shift for some reason
out here. The flights weren't so bad and the layovers were pretty long.
I was able to call and

talk with you the first layover. After I got off skype with you and as
soon a I plugged in my laptop they announced we were leaving so I was a
bit annoyed. The second place we landed in Greece wasn't to bad at all.
I was able to talk with you again for a little bit and also charge up my
psp and laptop. I'm glad I did because after that when we stopped in
Italy there was only their type of outlet so I couldn't plug in my psp
or laptop to anything. They had only one phone and couldn't get the
calling card to work at all on it n the operator said he could only
process credit cards and the airport had no wifi in it. I wanted to talk
with you n couldn't do anything but sit there. I didn't want to use my
laptop or psp for anything there b4ecause I had a 4 hour flight from
there and wanted to play my psp on it so I just sat there for a little
over an hour. Thankfully it wasn't a long wait there. Once we landed in
Bahrain it was a circus with everyone finding out where they were going
and who to meet up with. When the Ike group got

together they told us all to quickly get our things because a cod was
already set to take us out. They broke us up into 2 groups to fly out
and I was on the first so I didn't have time to do anything really. Got
that all set n they told us how to put our cranials on and a special
life vest which we had to wear both the entire time. Craniels are a type
of hat/helmet that aircrew guys have to wear on the flight deck n it has
goggles on it. The flight was like a rollercoaster. You got on the plane
through the back of it that lowered down and there was 2 rows of seats
with 2 on each side, all facing backwards. There was no windows or
anything so you just felt the flight the whole time doing it backwards.
The takeoff was a bit weird because it pushed you forward rather the
backwards. We all had a 4 point harness on during the flight. It was
very crowded on that thing and I got

very restless. The flights all the way out here I was in the first class
section. Even tho it was a computer flight they still had the kind of
seats for first class where I was so I'm glad I stuck with the seat he
gave me and also gave that to me. I don't think I would've done so well
otherwise. The seats were like lazyboys up there. There was a part that
would come out you could put your legs up on it and also a foot rest
part, then you could also recline, and the head rest could fold in on
the sides. Was very spacious and roomy so it worked out great. But the
cod flight was very cramped. It was a 3 hour flight so I didn't do so
well being so cramped and tired I couldn't sleep on it. As we finally
got to the carrier he waved his hand in the air while sitting down to
let us know we were landing. That was freakin cool, and crazy. Cause
every so often you would jut feel yourself drop and turn

here n there. Then finally it just dropped and hit the flight deck and
when it hit the arresting cable you flew back in your seat because of
how fast it stops you. You would have definitely gotten sick lol. The
very first flight you would've been sick too, a lot of crosswind and
turbulence, the plane was shaking all over the place from side to side
and was also dropping here n here. I thought for sure it was the plane
and how it would be the whole time, thankfully it was just the first
flight cause even that got me a lil dizzy it was so bad. I've still been
checing into the ship trying to get things straightened out and also
figuring out what I'll be doing out here. I'm still not sure what they
are going to have me be doin but I am defiantly staying in this shop
they have me in now. The people seem to be alright, quite a few of them
I talked with regularly now and the work gets done thankfully. The
backlog isn't very high at all for them being this far into cruise.
Everyone had a beer day because of not pulling into port for so

long. They were jokingly mad cause I just flew out here and could have 2
beers with them even tho I could have been drinking right before I came
out here. I didn't get any tho. The lines for chow hasn't been bad at
all yet. Normally they wind a long ways and up into the hangar bay, but
everytime I go for food I can get right in line. I found a pretty good
rack and its on the top so I have an open roof rather then a little box
to sleep in. The pipes above it used to leak before they fixed it so no
one had it, but its in a great spot. They patched it up and fixed it
like the week before I came out here so was perfect. I haven't had any
problems with it yet either so its workin out ok. I head to bed right
after shift so I can get the sleep I need and then whatever time I have
before shift is my free time, which is like 2 hours. You can listen to
music while on shift but that's about it s its been a little boring
because there has only been like 2 things to work

on out here with everyone in the shop, so a lot of just talking and
standing around. I should be able to read some of my book tho, but I've
still been running around and haven't had time to read any of it.
Everytime I go get a signature I get like 3 more papers that have to be
filled out and finding out theres classes I have to go to that take a
couple weeks and then have to get all my training done so I'm wondering
if I'll be busy the whole time until I get home. Found out also you go
tad while out here if ships company, happens to everyone, even the
chiefs. So this will b my first time in my career going tad lol A lot of
people get sent tad to something while they are an e3 at their first
command and even at other places to. I've lucked

out so far. Guess I've been to valuable to send away hahah But out here
everyone has their turn. Luckily they cant send you tad for the first 90
days so I'll get sent tad on our way back probably. Whenever that will
be. I'll keep you updated on things but for right now Im going for some
food. Just got in the shop after showering and Im starving

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Finally heard from Richard:

It’s been taking me some time to get used to the time difference. I’ve been having to take a quick nap each day so far just to keep me going. I’ll be heading to bed right after my shift is over today to try and get as much sleep as I can. I’m still running around trying to get all my signatures for checking in. I’m in shop 9 right now but was in shop 8. They still don’t know where to put me yet or what I will be doing so I’m just kind of going with whatever until I’m fully checked in and then by then something should be figured out. Its 4 in the morning for you there and 1pm for me here.

I’m going to take a look at the ship store tomorrow when I get my play credit card to see if there is a knit bag. I thought the one I brought would be fine but to put all my clothes in at my rack I need a bigger one. I haven’t been able to get anything yet because this ship doesn’t deal with real money like the others I’ve been on. You get a card that has a chip on it and whatever money you give to dispersing they put that amount on your card and everything on the ship uses that. It’s kind of annoying for just checking in and not being able to get anything. I hope yer able to sleep well at night. I’m going to get going to try and get a few more signatures on my check in sheet done.


Lillian did two hilarious things today. First of all, this afternoon, she put on her princess tiara and came over and said "Bow to the Queen". Yes, really. I said "WHAT DID YOU SAY?!?!" She said "Bow, Mama, Bow. Bow to the Queen." I have NO CLUE where she got this.

Secondly, tonight, as I was singing with her at bedtime, she stuck her hand down the neck of her shirt and touched her underarm. Then she started tickling herself and cracking up. Like, can't breathe, red face, tears on her face, falling back onto the pillow, laughing. Then she took it out and did the same thing on the other side. I'm hoping I can get her to do it tomorrow so I can get it on camera.

I was almost crying I was laughing so hard.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Here are a couple pages I found just by Googling that might be interesting to some of you.

The daily newsletter that is put out on the ship

The monthly newsletter that is put out for the families of sailors.
He is on the boat.

As soon as the flight landed in Bahrain, they told him to grab his bags, there was a cog (don't ask, I have no idea) waiting. He emailed me briefly, from a friend's email to say that he had had a shower but no sleep and was going to sleep and then check in tomorrow. After he gets checked in, he will have his mailing address as well as his email address.

As for us, someone asked me today how we were doing and I figured since I was answering her, I would just copy it here for yall too.

Well honestly, this sucks. Lillian has absolutely lost her mind. And because of that I am too. She has quit eating and sleeping and has forgotten everything she learned about using the potty. She goes between throwing hysterical tantrums and being a clinging, weepy mess.

Other than that, I am doing..alright. I am trying to keep busy and it has worked well so far, but obviously I won't be able to do that every day of the next five months. I actually thought to myself last night "I'm doing pretty good. This might not be as hard as I thought." But then I remembered that it had only been 24 hours. One freaking day. Then I lost it for a little while. It just seemed like it had been a month but it was less than 24 hours since I had seen him in person and I had had one phone call with him, skyped once and several emails...much more than I will do in any one of the remaining weeks, let alone days.

I'm told it will get easier. And I'm sure it will. Well at least I desperately hope it will, because right now its not so fun. A friend who's having a rough time lately told me last night that I joined her on the "Slow Motion Train via the Suck Bus" and that she was sad I was there, but glad she had a traveling companion.

He did get me a Kindle though, before he left. And I LOVE it. I've already read two whole books and several partials. If you don't have one, and aren't opposed to the idea of not "holding a book in your hand" I HIGHLY recommend it. I love it!
He talked to me via email this afternoon and he was in Naples, Italy and expected one more stop before landing in Bahrain. He said the flight had been decent so far.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

First Stop

He's in Terceira, Azores, Portugal.

The flight was 4.5 hours and he said not too bad although there was a ton of turbulence that got him disoriented. He got a great seat and it even has some kind of footrest/lazyboy type thing. Said its kinda like first class. There were TONS of kids on the plane, but he said only one is up front by him and they slept this whole first flight.

They were supposed to be in the airport for two hours, but got delayed by weather. He was able to call me very briefly and let me know he was there, and then he actually got on skype. So I woke Lillian up and she talked to him. And by talked I mean mumbled one, maybe two, words, she was SUPER tired at 650 after not going to bed til midnight. I laid her back down in bed and he and I were able to type chat to each other on skype for a few minutes.

This morning he had to go in "just to pick up his file". Three and a half hours later he could come home.

We spent all day saying "What should we do?" We felt like we should do something important/special, but nothing came to mind.

We left to drop Lillian at Teresa's and I forgot my ID so we had to turn around.

Lillian peed in her carseat on the 5 minute drive.

We got to the base and the gate to get to the airport was closed.

Richard said that did not mean he could stay.

I had to throw away my unopened Diet Coke to get into the base airport.

His flight got delayed.

They only had Pepsi inside the airport.

He cried when we said goodbye.

I got lost getting off base. Three times.

I'm almost out of gas but couldn't find a gas station.

I was proud of myself for having stopped crying on the way home and thought I was doing pretty good when I saw a car with both a man and a woman in it and I thought, "I want to throw a rock at that car." Maybe not doing so good yet.

The first thing Lil says when she sees me is "Daddy?"

She had to sit in a wet carseat.

She cried as soon as we came in the house and she said "hello" and he's not here.

She refused to sleep in her own bed and wanted to sleep in mine (which is perfectly fine with me for right now, I'll break that later if I have to).

I can't sleep.

THIS SUCKS. But we'll live. One day at a time. Tomorrow LM is watching the girls for a bit, I'm going to try to go to the Y and get some nervous energy out then come home and clean the house. Bible Study is here tomorrow night.

Hopefully by that time I'll have heard from him at least once from one of his layovers. We did get some more info about his flight, but I'm not sure I'm supposed to post that online. Maybe after he gets there.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Pray for Miss Lil. She got some pretty serious second degree burns on both feet tonight while at a sitters house. They have a huge floor furnace vent and Lillian walked on it barefoot. For right now, we are monitoring it and hoping it doesn't require a doctors visit.
Richard is for sure leaving Tuesday the 23rd, he is flying military, straight to Bahrain. He will stay in the barracks there for a few days, waiting for a flight directly to the ship. He is to be at the airport at 845pm and leaves at 11pm. We are unsure if I can/will wait with him during this time, and what we are going to do with Lil.
Richard has not left yet, we still don't know when he will be leaving. It looks like next Tuesday, the 23rd. In the meantime he is working TAD (Temporary Assigned Duty) as a Brig Escort (transporting prisoners) from 845pm-445am.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


Richard will be leaving this Tuesday, February 16th.

Thursday, February 4, 2010


As of right now Richard is scheduled to report to the Ike's office on base on Friday, February 12 and he will deploy shortly after that. We are busy having fun and getting all the pesky details taken care of before he leaves. I will do a bunch of picture posts after he leaves, but for now, no more blog time while he's home.

Lillian's 2nd Birthday Party

We had a "photo booth" ghetto style, by duct taping a striped sheet from goodwill to the patio fence.

I made the cake, from this photo I liked online. The colored dots are just M&Ms; mini, regular and peanut.

The kids were adorable! They enjoyed the cotton candy, cupcakes, chocolate covered oreos and giant lollipops while dressing up with dress up clothes and clown noses.

The adults got in on the clown nose fun too.

I got this banner for super cheap at Michael's and the kids loved it. I wish we had a yard to stake it in though, as it kept coming unattached from the walls.

The menu included hotdogs (in wrappers from Hobby Lobby) and cheese burgers, cupcakes, peanuts, suckers, circus peanuts, "ticket" mints (Hobby Lobby), chocolate covered oreos, a homemade cake and cupcakes, hot pretzels and nachos. All of the printed stuff (water bottle wraps, napkin wraps, sucker stickers, cupcake picks, banners, etc) was part of a printable DIY kit I purchased from Dimple Prints on etsy.

The decorations were the culmination of months of keeping my eyes out for cheap things and ideas here and there. The felt garland is my MOST FAVORITE DECORATION EVER. I made it after seeing this one and it did take some time, but was super easy. The clown was a dollar store find. The banner and door sign were printed from the Dimple Prints Package. The popcorn bags, red/white garland (outside), magnet photo frames and suckers were from Oriental Trading. The tickets were from the local Party Store as well as circus music that was playing in the background. The cotton candy was from Amazon. The felt Happy Birthday banner was from Hobby Lobby, borrowed from a friend. The peanuts tin was purchased at the Target Dollar Spot and personalized with vinyl by a friend. The favors were recycled frosting containers wrapped with scrapbook paper and stickers with the children's names. Inside the favors were: clown noses (Oriental Trading), lion and elephant finger puppets (Target Dollar Spot), animal crackers, circus tattoos (Oriental Trading) and Skittles.