Saturday, June 27, 2009

There's Strong, And Then There's Army Strong!

On Friday the 19th; the evening after the COC; Ron gave the oath to 23 recruits on Kauffman Field. That night the Royals played the Cardinals and we happen to be huge Cardinal fans. We are from St. Louis originally and so it was fitting to be there that night.

It was touching to see these young people take the oath knowing they are enlisting during non-peaceful times. I was proud to be there that night and I'm proud of Ron. It was in 1981 when Ron went to a recruiting station in St. Louis (In the same Battalion he now commands) and signed his papers.

Click HERE to see the Kansas City Star newspapers photo.

Ron and his staff take the field right before the oath.

These are young faces. It is my prayer that these recruits will stay safe and learn leadership skills that they will use for a lifetime.

There is our group...up there waving!

Ron and Lucey getting ready for the game to start.

We decided to have a bite to eat first and then go sit in our seats outside. The food was delicious and Lucey ate a lot!

"I'm taking a little break while my tummy settles from all that good food."

Andrew joins us for some cookies and a hug.

Lucey was having fun walking around, climbing on the railing and swinging from the dividing bar. Do I have a future gymnast?

We invited Mom and Dad to join us. I'm so happy they could share this event with us. Father's Day was two days later and I could not be with my Dad for that so this was the next best thing. Right Dad? Besides....The cards won 10-5!!! Go Cards!!!

A smooch for Daddy.

There was a fantastic fireworks display right after the game. What a great way to cap off our evening.

Lucey was still on the go and being pretty silly at 10:00 at night.
So far, we are really enjoying our time in the Kansas City area.

Change of Command

The week of June 14th was even busier. We were preparing for Ron's Change of Command (He is commanding the "Heartland" Recruiting Battalion and his office is in Kansas City--we chose to live on Ft. Leavenworth because we love living in the military community), preparing for out of town guests, hanging pictures and doing a little decorating. On the 17th, a very dear friend who is like a brother to Ron, flew in from San Antonio. Mike is also a LTC in the military. He is Andrew's Godfather. He and is family are getting ready to make a move to Hawaii. Thank you so much Mike for being here for us! Thank you to Barb who let us have Mike for several days. While Ron was very busy with COC activities, Mike became my right hand man. I'm so grateful he was there to help me. We have known Mike for 16 years. What a blessed time spent with Him. We were touched by all those who came to share in the ceremony. We have a lot of family right here in the Kansas City area. We thank all those who came from this area. My parents came from St. Louis. Two special cousins from Illinois came. Thank you, Ruth, for taking such great pictures with my camera. A special surprise family came up from Alabama. Another very special family came in from Illinois. There were a lot of community leaders in attendance. I enjoyed getting to meet them and look forward to future meetings. Ret. Command Sergeant Major Gooden (Vietnam War Hero) was there. It was a hot morning but the view was beautiful. Lee, the Soldier-Family Assistance Program Manager, did a beautiful job with the reception at the museum after the COC. Thank you, Lee, the food was delicious and the cake was mouth watering.

The Liberty Memorial. This is the view from the Change of Command. How special and humbling to have this event at the National World War I Monument. It's beautiful and I recommend everyone go and visit the museum.

Lucey sat on my lap the entire time. I was so proud of her. It was hot and the sun was beating down on us. I think she knew it was Daddy's special day.

Marching out to the troops.

Ron is passing the Guidon-- An Army unit conducts a change-of-command ceremony whenever a new commander takes charge. The central rite of this ceremony is the passing of the unit guidon from the outgoing commander to the incoming commander. By taking the guidon, the new commander signals his selfless commitment to the traditions, values, and soldiers that the guidon represents.

Ron--Marching back as the new commander of the "Heartland" Battalion.

Sharing a few words.

I'm meeting and greeting.

Ron is doing the same.

Ron, Auntie M., and Ret. Command Sergeant Major Gooden.

Talking with Diane....Ruth taking the pictures. I'm so glad you came.

Lucey meeting Aunt Clare and Lucas for the first time. Thank you for coming.

Mom and Dad talking with our surprise visitors, Meredith in blue, Brooks, Bryne in the suit and our friend, Mike, in uniform.

Lucey enjoyed spending time with Brooks.

Lucey is taking a break. "I'm pooped!" Andrew is being patient. Oh, on a side note...the boys out grew their dress shoes and I really had to make peace with them wearing tennis shoes. At least they were new and clean. I had to let it go.....

Meeting the two fun guys from ESPN. It was great putting a face to their voices. I can't wait to see them in the future.

At Daddy's arms.

We're back home, Lucey has had a nap and we can all relax.

Our friends stopped by for a visit before we were on to our next event....I'll post about that next. Our beautiful Goddaughter, Brooks-- in the middle. She is almost a year younger than Andrew and Christian. She is tall, poised and delightful to visit with. Andrew and Christian could not say enough great things about her. They had a good time. She gave me so many hugs....I could steal her! I'm sure Meredith would not go for that. ;-) Maybe someday, Brooks, you can spend some time with us. Our door is always open and we would love to have you here.
I know others were taking pictures too. When I get those, I'll post more. Ruth did a fantastic job capturing the event. I only gave her a seconds notice.
What a great day!
A photo from the Kansas City HERE.

Click on the arrow to watch the video.

A Week Of Unpacking

The week of June 7th, we unpacked. We did some shopping. We reunited with some old friends whom we had met when we were first married and Ron was going through the Officer Basic Course. They were kind to bring a was delicious! Thank you Betty and Bill!

June 13th was a busy day. In the morning, Ron went on ESPN for an hour radio interview with the most fun two guys and the outgoing commander. The boys and I listened through a computer connection of the live interview. Ron was being welcome to the area. Kansas City has shown that they are very supportive of the Military. It really warmed my heart. These two guys came to the Change of Command the following week.

The evening of the 13th we headed to the Westin Crown Center for the AUSA Ball. Thankfully my ball gown was ready to go. I pulled myself together in about 30 min. Ron was searching through boxes for his bow tie and my clutch and off we went. I have never been so thrown together for such a formal event. Either I'm getting old and I just don't care as much or I'm a little crazed by the move. Anyway, it was such a great event. We sat between two tables of women. One group were women who's husbands were deployed. The other group were women who's sons were deployed. They stood up, they were recognized and it was touching. Thank goodness there was tissue on the table; we all got a little teary. The event coordinator thought of everything. At our table, we sat with a Vietnam War Vet who received at least two purple hearts for injuries he sustained in the war. He was humble and he and his wife were lovely to talk to. True heroes. The retired Command Sergeant Major's story was told in the movie by Mel Gibson "We were Soldier's." He will work with Ron on occasion. I do have a picture of him taken at Ron's Change of Command. I'll post that later.

Adam did a great job holding down the fort with the other 3 kids so we could attend this event. He is such a blessing. He always helps out with a great attitude.

I hate to post with out pictures. I know most people would rather skim the pictures than read a long rambling post. Since this is our journal, I really wanted to remember this time in our lives.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Unloading The Truck

Friday-June 5th...we wake up at 5:45, get ready, eat and drive to Ft. Leavenworth to sign for our house on the post. We made it there with 1 min. to spare. We left the housing office and drove to our new house pulling in right behind the moving van. Can you believe this timing? I had never seen this house before. I had 4 big dudes following me around waiting for me to make decisions on where the furniture will be placed. Talk about pressure! I turned around and snapped, "Please give me 5 min to make a plan!" They all got quiet. We did work well together and it all went fine.

Andrew is helping Lucey take a drink.

Adam's job, checking off the inventory.

Here we are....tired yet happy to be at our new home.

Christian is very happy about our new neighborhood.

Adam is starting to lose steam.

Lucey is gaining steam....she found her Bobby Car.

"Going for a ride on our long driveway."

Lucey lost among the boxes.

Everyone is helping...two people unwrap, one person smooths out the paper, one person breaks down the boxes and one person on Lucey duty.

We bought a kitchen island...okay, this is Ron's way of putting it together. I
would never have the patience for this kind of organization!

We took a break to go and visit Great Grandma. Lucey says, "Nice to meet you Grandma!" She loves Grandma!!!

Lucey doesn't want to leave! "We will see you again soon!" My Grandma is an amazing woman!

The Move...

The week of June 1st was our packing and moving week. This is our 10th (in 18 years) move to a new assignment. We have done several others moves in between but we are not counting those. You know, it never gets easier and no, we are not pros. Maybe there are some out there who become really good at it but that would not be us. Some moves have been easier than others and we are just praising the Lord that this move, even with adding an extra certain little someone, was pretty smooth sailing. I'll be honest, sometimes I get a little down when we move but not this time. I think it's because I have not had one ounce of time to spare to be down. I'll explain later.

Our last family photo in front of the Glen Carbon house.

We are boxed up by the end of the day on June 2nd. Boy, we had some friction with the driver of our moving van. Everyone said we would be a three day pack. My goodness, we don't have that much stuff. On the 1st...the packers left our house at 3:45. On the 2nd, they left the house at 4:00 and they were done. So they loaded us on to the truck on the 3rd ( was little Miss Lucey's Lu's 2nd birthday so we celebrated by eating out Chinese. Poor Andrew got food poisoning and spent part of the night in the bathroom...we have come to expect some kind of medical challenge when we move.....he was fine the next day.) We cleaned the home on the 4th and finally left for Kansas City that evening by 5:00 arriving in Blue Springs (I could not drive one more mile) at 10:30 p.m. It was a difficult trip for Lucey. She cried much of the way. :-(

Nana and Papa came over on the 1st and brought a few goodies in celebration of Lucey's birthday.

Lucey got a new book. She absolutely loves books! Especially ones that make noise.

Lucey is eating among the boxes. This girl can eat anywhere, anytime and anything!

She loved all the running room.

I'm going to miss this wonderful room and beautiful serene color. In case you are wondering, it's Restoration Hardware--Silver Sage.

The Hanley's had Adam over to their house the night before and gave him a farewell party/end of the school year party. Adam was busy the entire week we were moving. Getting together with friends and saying his good-byes. They brought Adam back home on the 4th and to say good-bye to the rest of us. We've already seen the Hanley's since we have moved and we plan on seeing them again in a few weeks. So saying good-bye was really not necessary...right? Oh, in case you are wondering....they are doing the sign for "cow." Lucey loves cows and saying "moooooooo!"
Keep checking back...I'll be updating more soon.