Late Thanksgiving Post

We are a large family, and as if that weren’t complicated enough, we are a large, blended, military family. We don’t have family nearby to visit, and planning to do anything with our out of state families requires negotiating with a high conflict ex who would rather see the children alienated from their extended family than to work in their best interest. So, unless our family comes to us, we are on our own. It’s okay though, as you can imagine, we’re used to it and we only have a few more years of this arrangement. So to recap, no nearby family, constant moves and I’m very picky about who I allow in my inner circle or trust around my kids. The few close friends we have are thoroughly vetted and are more like family.

This year, we had all of our children for the first halves of fall break, and their other sets of parents got them for the remaining half (which included Thanksgiving). So, we celebrated with our kids on Tuesday, than celebrated with our friends on Thursday.  Two different dinners, but both proved to be delightful.

Round One: Turkey day?
For the first time in… well… EVER, our family had ham for Thanksgiving, much to the delight of our children.

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Having a heart of gratitude is so important for me to help foster in my children. Like many families at Thanksgiving, we go around the table and share what we are most thankful for. Watch the video to see exactly how we answered.

After dinner, J had to go make an appearance at our second USMC Ball of the season, so we planned to have me take the kids out to the movies and splurge on popcorn and candy. You best believe we put the costs in our budget! I went over on snacks by $11.00, but the tickets were $3 less than we planned for EACH ticket, so we managed to come out a few bucks ahead!

Round Two: Ah, There’s the turkey… and tofu?
Our dear friend Jackie knew we would be childless on Thanksgiving (which always bums us out a little) so she asked us to join her family consisting of her grown children, her cousin from out of town and their child, and her aunt. J and I are warm people who generally get along with all kinds of people, but being around people also requires energy, and I’ve been in a bit of an emotional funk lately. We considered staying in our pajamas all day and avoid traffic and all the fuss, but we decided we would pull ourselves together, put some pants on (not an easy task after Thanksgiving Round One), and be social.

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Jackie and her family are clean eaters, some are also vegetarian, pescatarian, and vegan, so there were dishes for everyone. Happy day! My normal diet is a modified pescatarian (I eat eggs and some dairy) but I also don’t fuss when meats are served to me or when my family requests a meal with meat in it. I also happen to love traditional holiday meals.  I digress.  We were all seated separate from our spouses in a successful attempt at breaking ice and interacting with one another. With permission from our hostess, J and I had ordered the game Vertellis in hopes of playing it during Thanksgiving, but unfortunately, it didn’t arrive in time, So I managed to look up some thought provoking questions, write them down on paper, fold them up and stick them into a bowl. I had bowl passed around the table and each person draw a question to answer. It was a hit and many people said they enjoyed it even more than going around saying what they were thankful for.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

An Officer & A Gentleman

This mountain girl can clean up nice, but I always feel under dressed next to Chesty over here. It doesn’t matter what I’m wearing, when my husband is in his blues, I will forever feel as though he is my arm candy. I Love it!

My babe always thanks me for being his date, he’s impossibly charming. This year, he managed to top all our other prior years. This year, he made a special iTunes playlist to listen to on the way there. I didn’t even catch on until about four songs in. It’s unusual for my hubby to know all the lyrics to the songs, let alone all the songs that happen to be playing. It was a good mix of songs and they were all romantic, so I had to ask him what station he was playing. He told me that it wasn’t a station, rather, a playlist and that I should look at the name of it. Curiously, I sought out the name; 🎶“Songs that make me think about Heather”.🎶

I married a romantic

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Goodbye & New Beginnings

Today, my husband and I said goodbye to Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, the IMG_0984duty station we’ve called “home” for the past 3 years. MCRD has had it’s fair share of challenges, long hours and many duty days; suffice it to say that J and I were both ready for this day to come. However, I find myself in a moment of bitter-sweet reflection, recalling all of the many friends and fond memories that were developed here.

This morning, between bright yellow recruit barracks, Siggy was presented with two awards: a Drill Instructor Ribbon, and a Naval Commendation Medal, 3rd award, for his successful tour. The artist recruits presented him with a beautifully painted footlocker, topped with a set of those legendary yellow footprints. IMG_0986







With our goodbyes said to the Depot, we focus our attention to Siggy’s new duty station, *drum roll please* CAMP PENDLETON!

Yes! So much yes!

We are so excited to be going back aboard one of the busiest Marine Corps bases, with so much natural beauty including the coastline and the 125,000 acres of wildlife preserve that protects over 16 endangered species. J and I took the time to go preview his new command a few months ago and have since discussed his plan to impact the motivation and efficiency of his Marines. J’s Masters is in organizational leadership, which is fitting given his chosen career path. I have witnessed his leadership, both in the home and with his Marines, and I have all the faith in the world that he will perfectly implement his plan.

Thank you Mighty Mike and STC friends and family. You will forever be in our hearts.

I am so proud of your hard work and dedication you have exemplified. There were times that were tough, time you had to be away, times you were crazy busy (or were dealing with the sh*tty reception in your office) but there was never a time I doubted my place in your priorities. Somehow, you find a way to thrive in this environment and bettered yourself and our relationship. You are quite the catch!