Saturday, November 22, 2008

Fort Irwin

Okay, we finally made it to Fort Irwin on Thursday night. We had a bit of a delay when we left Lemoore, about 20 minutes into our trip, Aiden threw up all over himself and his carseat. We had 2 options - either drive back to Chris' grandma's house and wash everything (and delay ourselves even more), or drive 5 minutes to Target and buy a new carseat. We went with option 2. So we finally got on the road for good around 9, and drove through the gates of Fort Irwin about 5.

Once you hit Barstow, you get on Fort Irwin Road to drive out to the base. That road is literally 30 miles of nothing. Just flat, open desert. This place really is in the middle of nowhere. Just when you've about given up hope of ever seeing civilization again, all of a sudden the lights of Fort Irwin appear in the distance.

Like I said before, we got here Thursday night, and Chris went to housing first thing Friday morning. By 10 am, we had a house. Can you believe that? At least that deployment was good for something! The bad news is we can't move in until Tuesday, so we are stuck here at guest housing until then. We were able to take a tour of our new house though, and it's beautiful. It's brand new, three bedrooms, 2 car garage, and completely fenced in backyard. The kitchen is actually decent-sized (if you are familiar with on-post housing you know that the kitchen is one room they usually scrimp on for some reason), with marble countertops and cherrywood cabinets. I am so excited to move in, I'm going nuts here at the hotel! Another nice feature is the location, we are about a 10 minute walk from the PX and Commissary, 2 blocks from the gym, across the way from the community center (with the pool), and about 5-6 blocks from STARBUCKS!! You know how I feel about my Starbucks. Chris' unit is also within walking distance, so that makes life so much easier with one car for now. And the weather is fabulous - 75 and not a drop of humidity. I love Southern California!

So that's the good news. The bad news is that we are all sick. Chris got this crappy cold/cough first, now Jack and Aiden are both sick, and I can feel myself getting sicker by the minute. Chris is actually at the ER right now with Aiden, he woke up with an ear infection and throwing up. Poor Jack is not only sick with a nasty cold and runny nose, he's also teething. He woke up yesterday morning with his 2 bottom teeth! I feel so bad for him right now, since I can't really give him anything but Tylenol, and rub some Vicks on his chest. Poor baby....

So that's what we've been up to the last couple of days. I'll take some pictures on Tuesday as we move in, we are scheduled for our household goods that day as well. Should be fun!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Lemoore, CA

We got to Lemoore last night, and spent all day today here at Chris' grandma's house. We are leaving in the morning for the last 3 1/2 hours to Barstow. I can't believe we are almost there! It seems like this move has been going on forever and now we are finally on the last leg of our journey. Hopefully we will get there in time tomorrow to get checked in with housing and get the process started to get into our house. I can tell you that I can't wait to be able to sleep in my own bed again! The boys have been so good so far, these last couple of days of traveling have been great. We were in the car from 9am til about 7 pm yesterday (with a couple of stops), and Aiden and Jack both did fantastic. I think we just broke them in on our long trip out, so now they are veteran car-trippers....Anyway, all three of my boys are asleep right now, so I'm going to go hit the sack as well. we come!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Willits, CA

Well, we made it to Willits last night about 9:00. It was a much easier drive than I thought, since both the boys actually slept the majority of the way. Isn't that messed up?? I drive 3000 miles with these stinkers and Aiden doesn't sleep AT ALL. Daddy gets in the car and Aiden just conks out. What's up with that? Not that I'm not grateful or anything, don't get me wrong, but come on! So now Chris is doubting my whole "we can't drive that far with 2 little kids cause they can't handle it" rhetoric. Whatever.

Today we are aiming for Lemoore, CA which is about 6 hours. 3 hours to Sacramento to have lunch with Uncle Randall (Chris' younger brother), then about 3 more hours to Lemoore. Chris' Grandma and several Aunts and Uncles live in Lemoore, so we'll stay there at least one night before finishing up the last 4-5 hours to Fort Irwin. California is one big state.

Anyway, more later...

Monday, November 17, 2008


I have lots to say, and not a lot of time, so hopefully one of these days I can catch up. But in the meantime, we are FINALLY leaving Crescent City today, heading on toward Fort Irwin. We had hoped to get out of here early this morning, but I woke up with a urinary tract infection (sorry if that's too much information...) and I spent the morning and a good part of the afternoon wrestling with Tricare for a referral and then sitting in the Urgent Care Clinic. Long story short, I got some antibiotics and we are hoping to hit the road in a few minutes. We are going to drive to Willits, CA today, about 4 hours from here. It will be a late night, but hopefully we will all survive. I'm hoping I can post again at the hotel tonight, but no promises!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

At The Park

Today we took the boys to Kidtown, a park down by the beach. Chris and I both remember playing there before it was "Kidtown", back when it was just a bunch of sand and a few metal animals to ride, and I think a merry-go-round. It was kind of surreal to be in that same place watching our kids play. Here are a few pictures I wanted to share....

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Change of Plans

I guess we are no longer leaving here this Sunday (tomorrow), but NEXT Sunday. This is according to my husband who has decided he wants to spend another week here. Whatever, I told him it's up to him how he wants to burn his leave, and how much of it he wants to use up. But he'd better have leave left for when our household goods get delivered, cause I'm tired of setting up the house by myself! I always seem to get stuck with it. When we went to Germany, he was in the field when our stuff got delivered. Conveniently. And then in GA he was a drill sergeant, so you know he was never home for stuff like that. Anyway....

Here's a funny story. We all went out for pizza last night at Wild River in Brookings. Like, 16 of us, or something like that. Anyway, there is a game room there with pool tables and arcade games and stuff like that. The kids and the guys were all down there playing and us girls (and Jack who passed out on my lap) were up at the table talking and stuff. Aiden's running around having a good time when he loses Daddy. I can see him from the table, and I know that Chris is only a few feet away playing a video game, but Aiden can't find him. So instead of freaking out, he pushes a chair over to the pool table, climbs up on the table and yells, "DAAAAAAD!" at the top of his little lungs. I almost spit out my soda. Well, it's so loud and crazy that Chris can't hear him and doesn't realize that Aiden is looking for him. Keep in mind he's probably about 4 feet away. So I waved and got Aiden's attention from the table and pointed in Chris' direction. Aiden saw him, smiled really big and yelled, "THERE'S MY DAD!" and climbed down. His plan worked, he found his Dad!

Today Chris and Aiden and Grandma and Aslynn are at the movies watching Madagascar 2. I think taking a couple of 2 year-olds to the movies is a great way for Daddy to spend the afternoon...:-)

Thursday, November 6, 2008


So it looks like we are going to be leaving here on Sunday to head down to Barstow. Finally. Not that it's been a bad visit here in Crescent City, it's actually been good. But my gypsy feet are itching and I'm ready to get going. I want to get a house and get unpacked and sleep in my own bed again.

Last night Jack decided to demonstrate a new skill - he climbed up the stairs. I caught him about halfway up, and just watched him muscle his way up to the top, with my hand hovering behind his butt. This is one determined child! He's not even 7 months old yet and already he's climbing stairs! I sure hope our new house is one level!

Monday, November 3, 2008


I just wanted to share this picture of Jack that my sister-in-law Gloria took the other day. I thought it was really cute....

Sunday, November 2, 2008

A Day at the Airport

So here is the story I promised yesterday. It's going to be kind of long, but hopefully worth the read....And just for the record, YES, I am crazy.

Since Chris was flying through San Francisco to get up to Crescent City, my mother-in-law (who works for SkyWest/United Express Airlines and is the manager of the Crescent City station) got me and the boys buddy passes to fly down to San Francisco and surprise Chris at the airport. I figured if I can handle 3000 miles in the car with these two knuckleheads, I can handle an hour on a plane, right? Sure....

Actually, the plane ride itself wasn't too bad. Except for the last 15 minutes of the flight when Aiden decided to take off his seat belt and throw a fit about putting it back on. He literally sat on the floor during landing since I couldn't put Jack down to force him back into the seat. Oh well, we survived. We got to the airport around 12:45, Chris was due in about 3:20. So I figured we'd get something to eat, and wander around for a bit before going to meet his plane. Since he was flying United into SFO, we were in the same terminal, and didn't have to worry about security or anything, we could be standing right there when he got off the plane. I thought it would be a great surprise. So I check at the gate where his plane is supposed to land only to find out that it's been delayed and is landing at another gate. Okay, so I go down to that gate a little while later to check on the progress of the flight only to have them tell me that it's been delayed even more - not landing until 4:38 - and it's at yet another gate. Now, San Francisco airport is very nice. It's very cosmopolitan, has lots of specialty shops and eateries, and even a spa to get a massage and a pedicure and stuff. Not that I got to do any of those things. I spent 4 hours wandering around the terminal with a bored 2 year old and a baby. We played on the playground for a while, then we spent about an hour and half riding the moving walkways back and forth, we had snack after snack after snack, we watched the planes land out the window, and we were reaching the end of Aiden's patience about the time Chris is supposed to land. We are waiting at the gate (the gate agent knows my story and is letting me know if things change again). I'm talking to Angela (Chris' mom) and she tells me that she just had the following conversation with Chris before he left Denver, keep in mind he doesn't know I'm in SFO waiting for him:

Chris: Hey Mom, I changed my flight. I'm going into Sacramento instead.

Angela: What? Why? Why would you do that?

Chris: Well, the weather's crappy in SFO and I decided to go to Sac instead and I'll take the evening flight from there up to Crescent City.

Angela: Uh, well, actually, we don't have an evening flight from there anymore, if you go there you'll be stuck there overnight. Do you already have a boarding pass?

Chris: WHAT? There's no flights? !@$# Okay, I guess I'll change my flight back. Where's Jennifer, can I talk to her?

Angela: Ummm, no....she's out running errands with the boys, I'm not sure when she's going to be back. She said she had lots to do before you get back.

Chris: Oh, okay, I'll call her cell then and let her know I might get stuck in Sacramento.

Angela: Yeah...okay, I don't think she's got cell service cause I just tried to call her myself and it wouldn't go know how it is up here.

Chris: Okay, well...tell her I love her and I'll try to change my flight back.

Angela: Okay, yeah, you better, cause otherwise you won't be back until tomorrow.

She tells me this whole conversation. I'm thinking that if he goes to Sac I will absolutely kill him. She assures me that he changed his flight back to SFO, he called her back and confirmed it, so he's definitely coming to SFO. Okay, phew! Cause if I came all the way down here with 2 kids and spent the day here only to have him go to Sacramento I will be really pissed! But okay, he's on his way, only a few more minutes. What a butt...

I was talking to a couple in the gate area about how I was waiting for Chris and they offered to take a picture of us as he came off the plane and email it to me. I thought that was so nice! And soon some other people heard our story and everyone was so excited for us that he was coming home from Iraq. The plane lands, I get Aiden all excited to see Daddy. The people start coming off the plane, and coming, and coming and then....he doesn't get off the plane. I repeat, he does NOT get off the plane. At which time Aiden throws himself on the ground, kicking and screaming and throwing his shoes across the floor and yelling, "I WANT MY DADDY!!" Very embarrassing to say the least. So the gate agent checks the listing and sure enough he's not on the flight. And he's not on the Sacramento flight either. She doesn't know where he is, must still be in Denver. I am not thrilled. Then she checks the next flight into SFO and he's listed on that one. It's landing at another gate across the terminal in 20 minutes. Apparently when they re-booked him back to SFO they put him on another flight. Are you KIDDING me? Do you know how sad everyone looks when you are standing there with 2 little kids, waiting for your husband to come home from Iraq and he doesn't get off the plane? I was mortified. Luckily I didn't have time to think about it much, cause I had to get across the terminal. So I threw Aiden (who is still screaming) in the stroller, carried Jack and pushed the stroller as fast as I could to the new gate. I made it with enough time to get Aiden in a better mood before the plane landed.

We were waiting and waiting and suddenly there he was...with a pretty stunned look on his face to see us waiting for him. It was totally worth all the stress. Only the stress didn't end there. Our return flight to Crescent City was supposed to leave at 5:30 (about 10 minutes ago) but had been delayed til 6:45 due to weather. Worked out great since otherwise we wouldn't have made it. So we get to the gate and get something to eat and the flight keeps getting delayed...and delayed...and delayed. Daddy was doing great occupying Aiden (who was really excited to finally have his Daddy back) until the flight finally left at 8:00. Once we got on board, both the boys conked out, so the return flight was relatively painless. Chris' entire family was waiting at the terminal in Crescent City, it was a nice ending to a pretty stressful day. All in all, the 8 hours I spent in San Francisco airport with 2 small children was worth it, we got to surprise Daddy and he's finally HOME.

Thanks to everyone for all the prayers and thoughts while Chris was gone, it meant a lot. He's back home safe and sound and hopefully he will be home for a while, so he can get to know his little boys.

It feels good to be a family again.

He's Home!

Just a quick update to let everyone know that Chris is home!! I have quite a story to tell, but it will have to wait until tomorrow, because I'm exhausted. After you read the story tomorrow, you'll understand why....

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Homecoming Today

Chris is coming home today, he should be on his way to the airport in Kansas, I think. I don't actually know...:-) He's flying through San Francisco, and will make the last flight of the day up to Crescent City, so he'll be home around 7. We are all really excited and can't wait!! There is a big family BBQ planned for tomorrow, so should be good to get everyone together. Anyway, I'll post again to let you all know when he's home.