Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Not exactly sitting on our thumbs.

What now?

Now that G.I. Joe's NG contract is up everyone wants to know what we're doing. Well, we aren't getting any more sleep that's for sure. And this isn't vacation time either. Lucy still is so excited he's home so she's sleeping less than ever but each day gets a little easier. But as far as plans go...

We don't know a whole lot right now except that the NG is "allowed" to take up to 3 months to process his paper work. We have to have those papers in hand before he can get things set to enlist in the Active Duty Army. I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand...3 months is a nice "break" (but not really a break which I'll explain in a minute) and that puts us at the end of September. So he'd be around for Lucy's birthday. But then, he might not be able to go on vacation with us in December if things keep getting pushed back. Plus, that's 3 whole months when we could really make use of a steady AD paycheck. Right now we're just praying. The timing of everything is crucial and there are pros and cons no matter what. God just needs to pave a way for us and we have confidence that He will.

The reason why this really isn't a break is because we're pretty sure we know where G.I. Joe is headed with his AD career so he's already preparing. After a weekend of taking it easy he's training and working out now twice a day. Between that and the new military spouse website I got asked to be a feature columnist on, finishing up the manuscript, taking care of The Milies, and Lucy getting smarter every day...our lives are not slowing down they're actually speeding up.

I've joked with G.I. Joe all weekend about him missing the NG and wanting to run back to it. He had a really nice final day with the unit and even got a nice surprise from the battalion commander. But the truth is we don't even know what a "normal" or "typical" NG experience is supposed to be. Its like we weren't truly ever part of it since he spent most of his time on orders with the Army anyways. This doesn't seem like such a huge transition for us.

What makes it worth it?

I really wanted to give G.I. Joe a gift to commemorate these first years of his career. About a month ago we found a stack of old notes from some of the soldiers he trained. At the end of each cycle, very shortly before these soldiers would be leaving to go over there, he would ask them to write down things he did that were helpful and things he needs to improve on. My soldier really doesn't like to talk about medals and commanders' coins. To those things he rolls his eyes and says "I don't know why they give these out...I just do my job. This is ridiculous." But these notes, they are worth more to us than any other award out there. So, when he came home Lucy and I gave him this frame we put together with 4 of our favorite notes and a few pictures from his career.

Here are 2 of my favorites from when G.I. Joe was still a Specialist.
(These are copied word for word, letter for letter)

Spc G.I. Joe is very knowlegeable about
every mission we going on.
He gives us advise and knowlege we need
to stay alive in Iraq.
There is nothing bad to say about Spc. G.I. Joe.
He's a good leader and great soldier.
He should definitely be a NCO.

Spc. G.I. Joe emputed his knowledge from his theater
experiences to us in a consise, visual, and thorough manner.
He was both critical and encouraging.
I never once felt that he was condesinding when dealing with either
my lowest enlisted soldier or myself.
I learned a lot about squad communications and tactics.
~from a SSG

So, that's our full update!
And thanks for enduring the shameless bragging of a proud wife :)


JG said...

I love the plaque (for lack of a better term). That is a fantastic idea!

I love the pictures of Joe & Lucy. Their relationship is so sweet and just jumps off the screen in those pictures. It reminds me of me and my dad when I was little. I was really lucky and, even though I had a dad who was a workaholic, he loves being a dad, coming home and playing with us. I'm just starting to learn how lucky I was to have that kind of dad, and it looks like Lucy is too. :)

The Mrs. in Stilettos said...

I hope they process the paperwork quickly! We know how long it can be and how hard it can be! If it does take the entire time, he will at least be better slotted to go in at the start of the fiscal year meaning more available positions! When J tried to go back to AD after his time in the guard they tried to make him switch his MOS and everything, but he pulled some strings and was able to stay 11B. Sometimes you have to fight for what you want, but don't give up, it's worth the fight completely! I am excited about what you guys have planned for the future!!!

Aqua M said...

Military & timing - two things I know about so well already, and I'm only just beginning! With every aspect in my life up in the air right now, I'm really learning to trust in GOD's timing. I think you're better at that than I am, but I know how worrisome the unknowns can be!! You're my hero. :)

Mel said...

I love that frame idea - Al would totally roll his eyes, but I think he'd secretly like it! Thanks for the idea...

Army Big Daddy's Wifey!! said...

Awwe I just love the looks on their faces, it like they pick up on this imaginary line they left on, if that makes sense. I wish you the best of luck with the transition, I admire the courage and strength it takes to do what you do! Love, Love, Love the framed letters thats a beautiful acomplishment for him!

L.C. said...

Love it! Everything about this post!

Kelli said...

Awwww, what a blessing that they hit it off right away!!! =)

Mr. Superman & Mrs. S. said...

Oh I love that you framed those things up. How special! Those pictures you got of the two of them playing are so sweet!

The Ayers Adventures said...

I love the idea of framing the letters that is really sweet and heartfelt! Not only do you get to show your appreciation but also his fellow co-workers! Your blog is amazing and I love Ask The Milies its such a great idea! Your publications have also been so amazing and inspiring! You are such a wonderful blogger and such an inspiration you have so much to give the world and I'm so happy to have found your blog out there to help out through the crazy times going from being a military daughter to fiance its been a change but I'd so happy to know others are out there as well! I also left you something on my blog an awesome award so you should check it out whenever you have time but most certainly enjoy time at home with GI Joe and your lil first!


Ashley said...

What you gave GI Joe is priceless. It is something that can be passed down to Lucy (or future children) and they will always remember what a hero their dad is/was. Keep your chin up, we all know the military takes their sweet time with so called paperwork! The NG does not want to lose a valuable soldier!!

The Mrs. said...

Thats a really nice gift! When the Mr. seperated from the Corps, I didn't give him anything... lol...

Crazy Shenanigans said...

Aw, I think that's such a great gift that you had made for him!

Lawyer Mama said...

I love the plaque! What a great idea! And the photos are too adorable.

Stephanie Hartman said...

Aw this was so sweet.. The plaque you did for him was so awesome I'm sure he loved it.

Mateya said...

What a great gift! I am sure he loves it!

Glad that Lucy was so happy to see her daddy...I am sure there is no greater feeling than seeing them play together and be so happy to see each other!