Welcome to my VERY random blog. The Home page will show you all of the posts in my blog. If you would like to find just the posts related to our move to and life in Hawaii, click on "The Journey"

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Being Different Has Its Advantages.

So, as you may or may not know, my husband is deployed for the first time in almost 4 years.  The last deployment he had was right after we started dating.  Since being married, he has been home.  Not always able to travel with me, but at least he was home.  The moving process had us together nearly 24/7 for 2 full months, mostly in a car and hotel rooms.  Overall, we dealt pretty well with all that extreme togetherness, and now we get to deal with separation.  Back-to-back.  No middle ground here!  Yet somehow, we don't have much of a problem with adjusting.

Don't get me wrong.  I'm not *happy* that my husband is gone.  I wouldn't chose it if given the choice.  But at the same time, it doesn't exactly bother me either.  I'm not one of those wives that focuses on missing my husband when he isn't home.  It just... is.  I'm not one of those wives who gets sad because her husband is gone. I'm the kind that gets emotional and get happy-teary-eyes cause I am just so thrilled to have such a great husband at all.  I don't understand when my husband is gone and people ask how I'm dealing with it.  Should I be having a hard time?  I just don't see what the big deal is.  I have lived alone.  Before being married I had as many (if not more) long distance relationships as not.  I am perfectly capable of living a fulfilling life without my husband around.  Am I looking forward to him coming home?  Of course!  I wouldn't have married him if I didn't like having him around.  But his presence isn't the end-all-be-all.

I am sure it would be different if we had kids, it would be far more stressful having more to do without him home to help but since we don't plan to have kids that's not a concern besides the fact that single moms do it every day anyways.  It would also be different if he were in a different branch with more dangerous deployments.  But if we think about it, we are pretty spoiled as a culture.  No one seems to understand "how do they do it?" like being apart is the end of the world.  Because here we are fortunate enough for the norm to be living together with our family.  In other countries, that's not always the case.  Think about one of the common immigration stories- someone moves to another country to find work, to send money home to their family or to save enough to bring their family to be with them.  People who work on cruise ships, many of them are married and have children.

Being apart isn't great, but it's not horrible either.  I know I am in the minority.  Most couples, both military and civilian, really don't like being apart for more than a day or two.  Some not even that long.  Me, it doesn't entirely phase me.  So I guess I am lucky, this is one of the times where being different works in my favor.


Monday, May 19, 2014

The Journey Begins

It has been a while since my last post, and now it is time to catch you all up.  This will be the first in a series of posts called "The Journey" which will document not only our trip to Hawaii but our life here as well.  My husband and I took somewhere around 700 pictures on our trip across country from Virginia Beach to Hawaii, including photos of the sights and stops along the way, which I kept referring to as "documenting the journey" leading to what I am calling this series of posts.  All those pictures were taken on two cameras and my cell phone so a low battery would never mean missing a thing!  I will be picking some of the best as I share the experience of our journey.

Our last week in Virginia was a busy one.  It took a day and a half for our house to be packed up, and one more to load the truck.

Our last night (March 14th) we chose to eat at Cheeseburger in Paradise because they don't have any on the island (though there is a restaurant of the same name it isn't affiliated with Jimmy Buffet chain) and I am a little obsessed with their pina coladas.

We went home to a house empty of everything except our cats and the luggage we were taking on our trip with us- only as much that would fit in the car.  Writing this now I wish I had taken pictures of the empty house, the pile of luggage. But here is the cat tube that the cats rode in while they were in the car, and were stuck in at the house while the movers were there and our last night in the house.

We slept on the floor without so much as a pillow or a blanket so we wouldn't have to pay for a hotel room for the night.  We found out after we got here that we could have been reimbursed for that expense, but having that money for the journey was more important.  Needless to say, we didn't sleep very well.

The next morning our landlord came by to do the walk through first thing in the morning and by 10 or 11 we packed the car and were off, saying goodbye to the house we called home for nearly 3 years, the longest I had lived in one place since moving out of my parents house.

The car was pretty packed.  I don't know that we really could have fit any more in there.  See right smack dab in the middle?  That's the cat tube!

After dropping by the cable company to return their equipment we were off on our adventure!  This was the exit that we lived off of, and was also the exit I lived off of the first year I lived in Virginia.

Caspian has some issues in the car.  While he did have a sedative to take, which kept him from hyperventilating the whole way, he was still talkative.  We had a very talkative kinda drunk kitty in the back of the car.  This photo I somehow managed to get by reaching the camera back and taking the picture blind, and somehow I got him in the frame and mid-meow.

Saying goodbye to South Hampton Roads, and the bridge tunnel that was the bane of my existence MANY MANY times...

It was opening day of Busch Gardens for season pass holders this day.  We had season passes and I was very sad we couldn't go, especially since we had some friends there.  I waved as we passed by.

And then it was goodbye Hampton Roads, hello rest stop for a bathroom break... and to clean out the pet tube as best as possible.  Shortly after getting on the highway one or more of the cats had a very smelly accident and unfortunately some got on ALL of them :/ 

Poor things didn't have much space back there, since the extra luggage really cut into their space :(  

Then we were back on the road and noticed this very, very clean looking truck.  Yes, I took a lot of random pictures.

Our country has some quite varied scenery which was really great to see along the way.  Here are some of the sights in western Virginia!

And then it was time to say goodbye to Virginia. 

And that is where I will leave off for today.  I hope you enjoyed reading about the first part of our journey!  I made a tab for the blog that will just have posts from documenting this journey including the move and then my experiences living in Hawaii.  Posts about anything not directly related to this journey (like the *final* blanket update!) will not show up on "The Journey" page just the home page.


Sunday, March 9, 2014

The Week Has Arrived.

Oh. My. God.  It is here, the move is here, and I am FREAKING OUT.  As you can tell, our timeline got shifted...just a little.  The earliest we could be moved is this week.  The movers come to pack us Wednesday and Thursday and load up the truck on Friday.  While we were originally intending on going to visit family after being packed up, we ended up doing that last week instead, and have so much left to do that we cut the visit shot just a little.  It's a lot harder leaving when I'm not going back in just a couple months like I normally have done since my niece was born.  It was good though... we saw my family, and his family which is just a little harder since he refuses to talk to his parents and not all his siblings get along and blah blah drama so unlike with my family we can't see everyone all at once.  But we managed to see some on the way up to visit my family, including some of his/our friends, and some on the way back down.

I only made it to one night of the dance event I wanted to go to, but that's OK cause in the end I didn't much feel like going (and I had the worst headache ever on Friday anyways.)  I had fun once I got there, though.

There is still so much- SO MUCH- left to do.  He waited until the last minute to figure out shipping his car so he hasn't even scheduled dropping it off yet, cause he needs a letter from the lien holder saying he can ship the car.  We need to get me every power of attorney necessary that is PCS and/or deployment related.  We need to arrange our accommodations for when we get there.  I need to send in all the appropriate documentation for the cats to enter the state, and set up for them to be boarded while we are on our cruise.  And for them to be boarded once we get to Hawaii.  We need to arrange for their flight, which is looking like it will be on a different airline.  I need to arrange to drop off my car to be shipped.

I am so looking forward to everything being arranged and done and for us to be on the road for this crazy journey!


Friday, February 21, 2014

The "Kate Effect"

This is a weather phenomenon where all the exciting weather fails to occur over me, because I really like crazy weather.

To be fair, this time we did get a darn good downpour... but it's already looking lighter out.  It didn't even downpour for long enough for me to take the screenshot, crop it, and finish this post.

The last time I wrote about the Kate Effect... it never, if fact, rained a drop... http://chickcasa.blogspot.com/2012/08/it-does-not-rain-here.html


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

It's Been a Week

Shall I update again?  Things haven't gotten very far from last week, mainly because we spent the weekend visiting my family for a bittersweet weekend.
My replacement at work falling through means I have discharge reports out the wa-zoo which all have to be done ASAP so my supervisor can look over them before I go over them with the families next week.  This is my last week working with the kiddos, I have 2 days left.  Tomorrow is my last day with one of them, and that is such a sad thing.
Since my medical screening took more time than we anticipated it looks as though the entire move is being pushed back about a week.  Not really a big deal at all, though.  What IS a big deal is that my husband is telling me they may not book our flight out to Hawaii until after he has separated from his current command, which means we can't adequately plan for things like possibly going on a cruise from the west coast, or making sure we can get the cats on the flight with us (pet spaces are limited, and it's first come first served.  This is a BIG DEAL.) It also effects our ability to find lodging once we get there, and I already checked and the Navy Lodge is booked for the theoretical dates we would need to stay, meaning we may have a hard time finding somewhere else to stay with our cats.
On the plus side we have gone through the majority of the stuff we never unpacked from the last move and have tossed quite a bit of stuff.  Wish we had tossed more, but at this point, I don't so much care.  At this point I want the plans made and the hard part behind us!  I just want to have the move started and it feels like it will never get here... even though I only have 2 days left with my kiddos at work.
Now, to try and get some sleep so I can wake up early and get a report out of the way first thing.



Tuesday, February 11, 2014

How About An Update?

I see I have gotten out of the habit of updating this thing!  Some of you may be wondering what is going on with me.  I know some may be interested in the move.  And at least once of you (you know who you are!) is interested in that blanket.  So, here we have updates... I will start with the blanket.  It's the shortest update:

I have made virtually no progress on the blanket since the last blanket update.  My size on the squares has varied a TON and I had to go through and sort the ones out that were just FAR too big and set them aside to redo them.  In November I spend almost an entire day just redoing squares while at a dance competition that I refused to compete in.  I wanted to go to the event, because those will be few and far between after the move, but I was stressed out that weekend and really just wanted to relax.  So that is what I did!  I partied and danced with friends at night, and spent Saturday in bed in the hotel room with the competitions on the TV while I crocheted.  I might have made a square since then, but I don't remember, I got started on Christmas presents, and then I got focused on knitting socks from a book I got for Christmas.  But have no fear!  I have NOT given up on the blanket!  NO!  I will be bringing every single square and every hank of yarn for the blanket with me as we travel across country and then hop a plane over to the island.  I intend to have an entire suitcase dedicated to yarn. While leads me to an update on the move...

It is almost upon us.  Yikes!  And yet, none of it is scheduled yet.  I have one last appointment for my medical screening so I can be put on the orders, so we can schedule our move and have our plane tickets booked.  Good times.  That will happen this Friday and once that is all set we can get that all scheduled.  What we are HOPING is to get out things packed and taken away the last week of February.  My last day with my kiddos at work will be the 21st... that's right, a week and a half left with my kiddos :(  Then I will have that last week to tie up loose ends with work, and clean the house.  Eric's last day at his command is Feb 28... then hopefully, March 1, we will be out of here.

From here we go to NJ to say goodbye to his family for probably overnight (I am HOPING to make it at east a full 24 hours.) then up to Syracuse to spend the rest of the week with my family.  After that... dance competition!!  I have to get one last one in.  From there it will be off to Ohio to stay with some of my relatives.  Then to Nebraska with some of my other relatives.  After that we don't yet know, Oklahoma?  Montana?  We have relatives in both.  Or we could go through Colorado.  After that- Las Vegas!  Maybe for a couple of days.  We will see.  Then, there is again the chance that we MIGHT... maybe... take a cruise outta LA.  It's a good price.  I don't see how we can turn it down, it will be our 4 days to celebrate both of our birthdays which he will be deployed for, plus an early anniversary celebration.

Then we fly to Hawaii... and get started with our new life.

Did I mention our cats are coming across country with us?  Four cats.  One back seat.  We got them a tube thing for the backseat so they can move around and have a litter box... Well... could get interesting... We will see!