Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Two weeks...too long.

Ah. It's been two weeks since Kevin left for Mobile. It surely hasn't been the best two weeks of our life that's for sure. There seem to be more downs than ups but overall, we're trying to survive, after all, we are halfway through. I'd be lying if I said it has gone fast. Some times in the day, I think it has gone fast, but more times in the day, I think it seems like forever since we have seen, touched, hugged, kissed Kevin/Daddy.

We've been surely trying to keep busy. The big girls were able to have another sleepover at my parents, which they love. It seems like feast or famine to me. I feel like I really need the break, but on the other hand, I really miss them, I am really bored without them. Don't get me wrong, having some special one-on-one time with Clara is really great. She has to share me a lot, so I know it's nice to have me all to myself. I feel like the girls come back refreshed, too.

On Sunday, it was just us girls. No help. No friends around. Just us. Weekends are tough because no one is around. Weekends are family time. We started the day off playing car wash. The girls washed our cars, played with the hose and even washed their own little cars. Then, they played in the backyard for a while and we enjoyed each other. After naps, we took a nice walk and Lilah practiced on her new bike! We got her the same bike as Mairead and she is doing great!!! The girls behaved so well for me that night and went to bed easily. It was a really nice day together with more happiness than anything.

Last night, our friend and her two kids came over for a sleepover party! Her husband was away for the night on business, so we thought we'd have some fun together. I made a homemade pizza, and the kids enjoyed a movie! The kids went to bed surprisingly easy and we enjoyed some quiet time. We talked and talked and of course, threw in an all time great - Steel Magnolias. One of my all time favorites! It's been soooooooo unbelievably hot here - in the 90s....so we've spent the last two days at the beach. I'd be lying if I said it was fun. There was no breeze and it was just hot. 

The last few days have been tough. I feel like I haven't spent much time talking to Kevin. He's been busy and I've really been missing him. I think the girls are, too. I just don't feel fulfilled after talking to him - I just want more. I want him home with us. He's missing so much with the girls and I just want him here to celebrate with us. Mairead just wants him home, too. She has periods of frustration and just can't understand why he can't come home. I think she is also having a hard time with our babysitters, too. I'd rather daddy be home with us, too! So, when the sitter is here, I usually don't leave the girls. It's just too much for them and they want to be with me. She hasn't been the nicest 4 year old in town to me either. She just wants her daddy - and so do I.  Lilah is doing well. She has periods of typical two-year-old defiance, but overall, she doesn't ask too much about Kevin. She gets very excited to talk to him on the phone and that satisfies her, where when Mairead talks to Kevin, it upsets her and leaves her with a lot of questions.

So, we're halfway through....and it seems like forever to go. Just come home already. Seriously.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

The Girls.

........and I'm not talkin' about my three beautiful girls.

I'm talkin about THE girls. You know...BOOBS.

My "boobs" aren't what they used to be. Before kids, I was a size 34 B...and a full B at that. They were perky. Not saggy. I liked the fact I could wear any top I wanted to, and didn't have to wear a bra with some. It was great. I liked my boobs.

Well, times have changed. Big time. "The Girls" aren't quite what they used to be. Before they were just there for Kevin to look at and grope. Now, they're off limits to him. They have a use. An important one!

Don't get me wrong, I'm proud of why my boobs are why they are. If you didn't know, I've been nursing for 4 years, 3 months and a few days consecutively. Yes, without a break and I'm proud of that! I've nursed throughout pregnancies and I've tandem nursed my girls (meaning, I've nursed two children at the same time). So, "the girls" have had a lot of wear and tear over the last few years! Since I haven't seen "the girls" without a job in a very, very, very long time, I am afraid to know the exact condition of them. They've gone through a lot, but have served me well!

I'm sure I know they hang a lot lower than they used to. I'm sure I know they're not as perky and pretty as they once were. And I'm pretty sure I won't be wearing shirts without a bra, unless of course, I'm going for a "Do and Don't" segment in the Glamour magazine.

One thing I do know is...surgery. I am pretty sure when Kevin retires from the Coast Guard and my body is completely....utterly all mine, I will have a wee little lift....oh, and maybe a little tuck if needed. I don't care to have big boobs, but a nice little lift so "the girls" don't have to rest so close to my belly button would be very much appreciated.

When I think about saggy boobs, I think about an elderly patient I took care of in nursing school. It was my first year of nursing school and a friend of mine and I had to give a patient a bed bath. We helped her take off her gown and her breasts were flat and sagged all the way down into her lap. My friend and I looked at each other in amazement - sagging can be that bad? Yep. It can and I surely couldn't live with that.

So for now, I will give my body to our sweet girls. I've never denied them the right to nurse - and they can nurse as long as they want....within reason of course! I know someday my body will be all mine again - I surely am not complaining about my body. I am proud of it!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

One week & never a dull moment!

I've We've survived one week and it feels like a whirlwind. I haven't stopped. Day or night. I feel like I am on constant over drive. I'll tell you, not having Kevin here is tough for a lot of reasons. Being alone at night is the worst. I hear every little sound, and when the dogs bark, it makes my heart skip a beat. You definitely realize just how much you grow to depend on someone, and I am not talking about depending on them for helping around the house, but just being there. If something isn't right, he is right there to reassure you or to take care of it. Someone to talk to. I hate silence.

I feel like there is never a second where I don't have something to do. I am either doing laundry, cleaning up, loading the dishwasher, emptying the dishwasher, taking the garbage out, feeding the dogs, feeding the kids, nursing the baby, changing a diaper, wiping a butt, cleaning a mess, cleaning up pee, cleaning up poop, cleaning up dog throw up, letting the dogs outside (even in the middle of the night), breaking up a fight, putting the kids for naps, kissing boo-boo's, comforting kids who miss their daddy, nursing a sick dog back to health, calling poison control, putting a kid in time out, giving baths - oh wait, I have to take care of myself too! Maybe tomorrow! Thankfully, I've had help who have allowed me to take care of myself because if I didn't have them, well, I'd surely be too tired to take care of me. 

The first 5 days or so were really tough. The girls were confused and asked about daddy all day long. It was non-stop. Sadly enough, the girls have really stopped asking about or for Kevin in the last day or two. It breaks my heart, but in all honestly, it's for the best. They just don't understand, and even answering their questions just wasn't doing it for them. When I would tell Mairead what daddy was doing, she would say "...but, I want daddy to work at his work here, not far away." They will talk to him 1-2 times a day and it works for everyone. They just want to see him. And so do I.

If that doesn't make you mentally exhausted, try being up in all hours of the night with a baby who decided she didn't need to sleep through the night anymore and a sick dog who had liquid ass and needed to be let out in the middle of the night. Seriously, why did my dogs and my kids decide that not sleeping at night should wait until after their daddy left?

Emmie, our 2 year old lab, ended up pretty sick. Not only did she have liquid ass (diarrhea if you're clueless) she started puking on Saturday. She was out straight. When she started to puke blood, I got really nervous. It was really sad. On Sunday, she was still really sick, but by that evening, she finally started to turn around. I was glad I didn't have to take out a second mortgage on our house by taking her to an emergency vet!

On Sunday night, our friends daughter, 11, came to spend a few days with us. Thank God for her! She has allowed me to keep my sanity for a few days! She is so good with the girls and I am very thankful for her help! She has helped in so many ways and the girls absolutely adore her! I am not sure I want to let her go tomorrow. I wish the weather would have been better, but I think we've made the best of it considering!

Tonight, I planned to grill steak tips from the Meat Market for dinner. I grilled them and boy did they smell yummy! I was so proud of myself for getting everything ready on time and together. Salad made. Risotto done. Meat done. Yummmm! Let's eat. I sat down, took a bite, and ewwwwwwwww. I asked Lily what she thought of the steak. Her response: "Ummmm...they're not the best I've ever had" clearly trying not to be rude, but I agreed. What did I do? So, I put them back on the grill, cooked them some more, even though I thought for sure they were done, and tried again. Nope. No good. I was so mad! A perfectly good dinner gone to waste. 

So, if I haven't had enough drama in the last week, I had even more tonight. I was downstairs folding laundry. Lily (our friend) came downstairs to tell me Lilah had drank some ACT mouthwash. Lily didn't realize she didn't put the cap on all the way. I went upstairs and there was mouthwash everywhere. Lilah said it "tasted yucky", but I couldn't get a straight answer as to whether or not she drank any or not. I called poison control. The lady assured me she would be okay (which I kind of knew) and just told me what to look out for - I responded "So, basically, she will sleep well tonight?" - the lady laughed and said "Yes! Just look out for any signs of intoxication..." I am glad the situation was rather light and I could laugh. Lily felt horrible, but I told her accidents happen and use this as a lesson learned.

Ah....I think I've earned a fat glass of wine tonight! 

If this is the first week then what the hell is the 2nd, 3rd and 4th week going to bring? Scares me to think!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Our trip to North Conway

Lilah laughing about the piggies
Hand in hand...

A few weeks ago (before our life was rudely interrupted) we took a little vacation to North Conway, NH. Kevin and I had been wanting to take the girls there for a while, and this summer we thought the girls (Mairead & Lilah) were the perfect age! We left on a Sunday and checked into the North Conway Grand Hotel. It was in a pretty cool location - right next to the outlet mall! They had several pools, and one with a zero entry for the little ones. The look on the girls faces when they saw the pools was unforgettable. They were SO excited!

Me & the girls on the Carousel

When we arrived on Sunday, the girls were so excited to go swimming. We spent some time in the water, and then headed over to the shops. My brother recommended a good restaurant for dinner, so we headed over there for some grub. We had fun at dinner and then stopped at my parents friends ice cream shop. It was a beautiful night to start off a vacation!

Lilah & Mairead on the train
Clara checks out the flower beds

On Monday, we headed over to Storyland. The place was perfect for the girls! Mairead was able to go on everything, and Lilah was able to go on pretty much everything. They had a blast! They really LOVE amusement rides, which is awesome, because Kevin and I do, too. I can't wait for the girls to be old enough to go on real, big roller coasters! Mairead and I went on the little roller coaster which she loved! Lilah wanted to go on, but unfortunately, she missed the height by about an inch. She was bummed! The hit of the day was the train ride around the park. They couldn't get enough! Clara had a blast walking around, too! She thought she was big stuff because she could go where ever she wanted. She loved touching the flower gardens around the park and when it was time to sit down for a shaved ice, she was down with that, too!
The girls share their shaved ice with Clara

Once everyone had enough, we headed back to the hotel. We swam for a while before we headed back to our room to get ready for dinner. We decided to try another restaurant my brother recommended. It was great and super kid friendly! There were kids everywhere and the food was good! As we were leaving the restaurant, Lilah yells in the parking lot "YOU HAVE A PENIS, DAD!?!?" - I almost peed myself! It was hilarious, not to mention, she repeated herself several times! The kid is hilarious! After, we hit the ice cream shop for some more! Who can give up yummy ice cream while on vacation!?! I sure couldn't! When we got back to our room, the girls were tired. Since we were unable to get a 1 bedroom, we were all stuffed in one hotel room, so it was a bit more difficult for the girls to fall asleep. I mean, who can blame them? They were so excited!

On Tuesday, we woke up and got ready for an hour drive across the kancamagus highway to head to the Whales Tale Water park. It was a gorgeous day, and we thought it was the perfect day to drive one of the most scenic highways in New England. We also thought it would be a good idea to give the girls some down time in the car. When we got there the girls were so excited. They had slides for the little ones and for the big kids. Mairead even went down medium sized slides - I was shocked! Lilah was a little young, and her being exhausted didn't help much. When she told us she wanted to take a nap, we knew she was exhausted. Before we knew it, she climbed up in the stroller, curled up with a towel and went to sleep! We had to wake her after an hour! She enjoyed a bit after she woke up, but you could tell she was still tired. Have I mentioned Lilah hates to be woken up??? Mairead enjoyed some time in the wave pool and then all 5 of us took a little ride on the lazy river...well, it wasn't so lazy, because I was holding Clara on a tube and somehow, I flipped over. With Clara in my arms. We both went underwater! It felt like a lifetime I was under there trying my hardest to keep Clara in my arms. I was so afraid I'd let go...but I didn't. We came above water and Clara didn't even choke on water! The little stinker held her breath! I just want to know how I fell off the tube??? Lazy river my ass!
Lilah goes down the slide

We headed home and thought everyone would sleep. Wrong. Mairead didn't. Lilah didn't. Clara did. We stopped at a few scenic views and took a few photographs. We reminisced about me and Kevin's first weekend together as we drove along the Saco river and saw one of the covered bridges we visited together. It was a really relaxing and beautiful ride home.

The day we left, we wanted the girls to have more pool time, so we packed up and headed down to the pool for a few hours. It was really great to see the girls progress even further with all of their time in the water! We were so lucky to have such beautiful weather the entire time we were away! Once we were done with the pool we headed back to one of our favorite restaurants for lunch and back for more ice cream so we could say hello to our family friend. The ride home was quiet. Lilah and Clara passed out, but of course, our fighter of sleep, Mairead, didn't. It was a peaceful ride home, and I am so glad we were able to have such a great time together. We didn't know the rest of our family vacation was going to come to a screeching halt when we got news about Kevin leaving for the Gulf the next day.

All in all, the time away was great. I can't wait for Kevin to come home so we can finish out our family vacation together. It will really be a special time for everyone. I know the girls are looking forward to that already...

Friday, August 20, 2010

Happy 11 months, Clara!

It is so hard to believe Clara is 11 months old. In one month, we will be celebrating her first birthday. I just can't understand how one year has almost passed since she joined our pretty little family. In the last month, she has changed by leaps and bounds. She has started to make the true progression from infant to toddler. Just the other day, I looked at her, and she appeared more toddler than infant. How is this possible? The day she was born just seems like it was yesterday, not 11 months ago...

11 months ago today I had just given birth to our beautiful baby girl. She was snuggled tight in our arms. Safe and sound. Tonight, she runs around like a crazy lady. The only signs of being an infant is when she calls for her mamma, nurses or needs some extra love. Other than that - she is toddler.

Clara & her baby doll
She prefers...

Baby dolls......Baby strollers......Shopping carts......Purses.....and big girl toys.

Do you see those 'toofers'???
She started walking right at 10 months and today, she is walking 100%. No more crawling for this crazy cat! She buzzes around the house from one room to the next exploring every little thing. If the dogs water bowl is out, she attempts to crawl into it. If the dogs are eating, she attempts to eat their food. If the gate isn't closed at the stairs, she attempts to climb the stairs. She loves to sit in the girls comfy pottery barn kids chairs. When her sisters start a dance party in the kitchen, she joins in. She loves to sing. She loves the beach. She loves the sand. She loves to EAT the sand. She loves to carry around baby dolls that are just as big as she is. She is a fighter and if one of her sisters wants something, they're going to have to fight for it. She loves baby strollers. She is independent. She poops on the potty almost daily - or more than daily. She loves the water, and has no fear. She loves blueberries and will scream until you give more. She hates to ride in the stroller as she prefers to walk herself. If this doesn't have the making of a crazy toddler, then I don't know what is! She babbles mammma all day. She has started to sleep 8-10 hours at a time at night. She loves to take a nap in her bed, but loves to be on the go with her sisters, too. She loves her mamma and her daddy. She has two cute front teeth - no one would have known she was cutting teeth.  Her 'toofers' are very much loved and noticed by her sisters. No more toofless grin :)

The last month I believe has been the greatest transformation. Just four days ago, her daddy left for the gulf, so on her 11 month birthday, it was just me and her. Celebrating together. One on one. Daddy in Mobile, Alabama and her sisters having a sleepover with Nana & Papa Steve. I look forward to more time together tomorrow.

In a few weeks, we will be celebrating our sweet girls first birthday. This year has gone entirely too fast. Clara has brought so much joy to our family. She has two sisters who love her so much and have really enjoyed her the last few weeks!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

We're surviving...

We've survived three days without Kevin. We've had lots of fun with some...ok, maybe more than some tears thrown in there, too. I won't tell you it has been easy, because it hasn't, but I am thankful for good friends who have been able to distract us!

Yesterday, was a lot of fun. We met some great friends of ours in Portland to go lobstering out on the Lucky Catch. It was a blast for all the kids (9 in all!). We caught a HUGE lobster - they think it is the biggest catch of the season and are estimating the big guy at about 3.5-4lbs! His claw was bigger than my hand! We saw several harbor seals, which was a huge hit. After, we all went out to lunch together.

All in all, it was fun, but the girls surely did miss their daddy. They frequently asked where he was and why he couldn't be with us. Every time they would see a plane taking off or landing, they would ask if that was daddy's plane coming home. When we arrived home, they saw Kevin's car in the driveway, Lilah immediately blurted "Daddy's home!?!?"...During the afternoon, whenever the girls had a problem or hurt themselves, they'd call out for daddy, but thankfully mommy was able to fix them right up and everyone stayed happy! Right before dinner, the girls were able to skype with Kevin while I grilled some chicken - yep, I manned the grill. They had a blast and talked about seeing daddy all the way through dinner! What would we do without computers???

Thankfully, I slept better last night. I felt like a zombie yesterday after having a horrendous night sleep the night before. Once we were all up, the girls were asking about their daddy. I feel like they ask the same questions over and over and over again. "Where is daddy?" - "Why did he have to go?" - "Is he coming home tomorrow?" - "He is gone for 30 days? Is that right?" - "What is he doing now?" - it's never ending...I feel badly and I pray I am answering them right. They asked to skype him throughout the day, but unfortunately, he can't skype at work. It is tough hearing their questions because it just shows their lack of understanding of where Kevin really is...

Today was a beautiful day! The girls had their swim lessons and did fantastic! We then headed home and played together in the backyard. After nap, we headed out to Target to get some materials to make our "countdown chain" so the girls could count down the days until daddy comes home - thanks to some facebook friends for this really great idea! They were so excited to make this for him. They talked about it all day and finally, it was time to make it! They had a blast making it for him and couldn't wait to show him what they made. Thanks to our babysitter, Michelle, who helped me and the girls out with the project.
Mairead writes her name backwards on a link
Lilah shows mommy what she drew for daddy

Excuse my hair - today I didn't shower! Yuk!
Mairead decorates a link

We made 30 links. I asked the girls what I should write on some of the links. Mairead came up with "Miss you daddy." - "I love you daddy" - "Come home soon" - and of course the prized "Daddy's Home" link. We hung it up in the kitchen/living room and it felt good to take off three links right away...27 more days to go. The girls were so proud!

The girls show off their project
THE prized link...can't wait to get to this one...
...and here it hangs so everyone can see

After dinner, we made some ice cream cones and headed out for a walk around the neighborhood. It was an absolutely beautiful night. Now, the girls are asleep, and I am here. Alone. This is definitely THE hardest time of the day. I hate sitting here night after night by myself. Crawling into bed is the worst. All I can think about is how many more nights I have to do this...too many, but I remind myself..30 days is much better than 60.

Tomorrow, my parents are coming up to take them for a night or two, so it will be just Clara and I....what am I going to do with just one child??? The girls are ohhh so excited for a sleepover at Nana's & Papa's house! I think a shopping trip is just what the doctor ordered for me!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

...Let the countdown begin.

So, the countdown begins today. If all goes as it is supposed to go, Kevin will be home by the 17th of September.  30 is better than 60. By far.

It was another tough day today, but overall, it was a nice day to be together. We took the girls to their morning swim lesson up the street. Mairead is doing so great. We are so happy we put them in extra lessons over the last few weeks. She is just improving by leaps and bounds, and she knows it! Her confidence is really building and we love it! Lilah is Lilah. She is insane and is now able to swim without a bubble. She is with 4 year old kids and she is one of the most advanced. She has no problem going underwater! It was such a nice moment to watch our girls with each other today.

When we came home, we put the girls to bed and enjoyed some quiet time. We sat with each other on the couch and just enjoyed each other. No TV. No music. Nothing. It was bittersweet but so nice to have that time together. The way to the airport was tough. Quiet. Somber. You could tell the girls were confused. They were so excited to see the airplanes at the airport but weren't quite sure where daddy was going! I wish I could have been oblivious like that...the good bye was very tough for everyone. We cried. I couldn't stop hugging Kevin. The girls didn't want to leave Kevin at the airport. Driving away was the toughest...

On our way to swim lessons (yes, again) Mairead kept asking why we couldn't go with Kevin. I mean, how do you explain all of this to a 4 year old? or a 2.5 year old? It is really difficult. I put some music on and what song came on...."Be Mine" by David Gray. This song brings back so many memories of when Kevin and I were dating. It was so appropriate for the way I felt 6 years ago and the way I feel now. My feelings haven't changed for him. I love him so very much. When the song came on, I told the girls this was mommy and daddy's special song. Though it isn't the song we danced to at our wedding, it is one of our most special songs. To this day, it brings me back to the 'new love' we had for each other.

After swim school, we were leaving, and a plane was taking off. The girls were so excited! They were yelling "Is that daddy's plane!? Is he on that plane!?!" and I told them, yes. They started blowing kisses to the plane. It was the cutest thing. When we came home our sitter was there to help with dinner and bed. As I was putting the girls to bed, they each made a special video to say good night to Kevin. After I kissed each one good night, I sent the video to Kevin. After I left Lilah, she started to cry. I went back into her room and she said she wanted her daddy (Kevin always lays with her after I do) and she wanted him to lay with her. I tried to explain to her daddy wasn't home and was on a plane. It didn't help, she kept asking for him. She just didn't understand. I started to tear up. I felt so bad for her. I went into Kevin's drawer and grabbed a shirt. I brought it into her room and gave it to her. She snuggled right up to it and said "daddy's shirt!" - then he called. Landed safely in Atlanta for a layover. The girls were able to talk to Kevin and say good night. It was really tough tonight, but I suppose each night will get easier and easier. I hope.

Thirty more nights...tomorrow, we will be going lobstering out on the Lucky Catch with some great friends. Should be a fun day!

Here are the words to 'Be Mine' from David Gray. Such an amazing song.

From the very first moment I saw you
That's when I knew
All the dreams I held in my heart
Had suddenly come true
Knock me over, stone-cold sober
Not a think I could say or do
'Cos baby when I'm walking with you now
My eyes are so wide
Like you reached right into my head
And turned on the light inside
Turning on the light
Inside my mind, hey

Come on baby it's all right

Sunday mornin’, day or night
Red or blue or white it's plain to see
Be mine! Be mine!
That rainy, shiny, night or day
What's the difference anyway
Honey till your heart belongs to me?

If I had some influence girl

With the powers that be
I'd have them fire that arrow at you
Like they fired it right at me
Maybe when your heart and soul are burning you might see
That everytime I'm talking with you
It's always over too soon?
That everyday feels so incomplete
'Till you walk into the room?
Say the word now girl
I'll jump that moon, hey

Come on baby it's ok

Rainy, shiny, night or day
There's nothing in the way now
Don't you see?
Be mine! Be mine!

Winter, Summer, day or night

Centigrade of Fahrenheit
Baby till your heart belongs to me
Be mine! Be mine!

Thursday, Friday, short or long

When you got a love so strong
How can it be wrong now? Mercy me!
Be mine! Be mine!

Jumpin Jesus, holy cow!

What's the difference anyhow
Baby till your heart belongs to meeee?

My body's on fire, and My heart is on fire,

My body's on fire, and My heart is on fire,
My body's on fire, and I’m losing my Sanity
Be mine! Be mine!

Monday, August 16, 2010

The last supper & good news...finally.

Tonight, we enjoyed our last dinner as a family for the next 30 days. It is sad. I don't like to think about having to say good-bye to my husband tomorrow. I hate saying good-bye. It has been a very emotional last few days, and I am so ready to feel normal again...

Today was the first time Mairead showed any emotion or understanding of Kevin leaving. Earlier on in the day, Mairead said to Kevin "Daddy are you leaving tomorrow?" and Kevin responded, "yes" and Mairead says: "Why, why do you have to go? I don't want you to go away for a long time". So very heartbreaking for the both of us to hear. I mean, what do you say to that? Later in the day, Kevin left to go get a few things at work during the girls rest. When Mairead realized Kevin was gone, she got upset. It was really tough for me. She kept saying how she didn't want her daddy to leave. I explained to her that mommy would be here for her always and wouldn't leave her. I told her we were going to have lots of fun together. I comforted her the best I could. It was a tough moment for the both of us, but, overall, it went as well as could be expected. She's 4. I can't imagine the confusion going on in her pretty little head.

Even though today started off fairly tough, it ended on a fairly positive note. For the first time in days, Kevin and I received some positive news. It's been a tough few days here at the Ferrie household and positive news was just what we needed to end the day on a more positive note.

When we first heard about Kevin going south, it was going to be for 60 long days. Thinking about 60 days was unimaginable. I couldn't even process that. Today, we received confirmation Kevin would be going for 30 days. I can do 30 days. When we first heard people were heading down to the gulf, the deployments were 30 days. I told Kevin back then I could handle 30. It would be tough, but I could surely do it. 60 days would be another story. So tonight, I feel the most optimistic I have felt in days. And it feels good.

So, I just have to make it until the 17th of September. We have lots of things planned to get us through the next thirty days - lobstering, sleepovers, visitors and fun trips. I have had so many offerings of help and support, and I know that will help things go a lot easier, too. Our high school babysitter (who is also our neighbor) has graciously accepted to help us 20-30 hours a week until she goes back to school. She'll come on some mornings and on most evenings to help with dinner and bedtime. She'll come on some outings with me. She'll give me the time to have some one-on-one time with each of the girls. My parents will take the girls for the next two Fridays and take them overnight. The girls will love that so much! I also have someone to come and clean our house once a week, so that will help a lot. I feel fairly organized so far, and I hope it stays that way.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

A summer cut short

This summer was about to go down into the record books as one of the most perfect summers ever. The weather was perfect. The company was perfect. A summer full of fun times and beautiful memories.

You could say....but, the summer is not over yet.

You are right. It is not over. There are still weeks left of beautiful weather and beautiful memories to be made. Unfortunately, Kevin won't be around to experience these with us. There were so many things we wanted to do together (as a couple) and as a family. And this, breaks my heart.

When Kevin found out he would be going south, we were on vacation together. Nothing like getting heart stopping news on a vacation that was not yet finished. The news really disrupted our vacation. Instead of spending the time having fun with our girls, and creating memories, we were too wrapped up in the sadness of it all. We just couldn't set it aside and continue with our vacation. So, the last half of our vacation was wasted. Except for today.

The girls asked if we could go to the beach. Kevin and I couldn't say no. It was a beautiful day together. The girls had fun with their daddy, and I had fun watching them together, snapping photographs of them together. It was tough taking photographs with tear filled eyes, but I was able to capture memories, and that is all that matters. I'll post them later.

So, back to a summer cut short.

Kevin and I had lots of things we wanted to do together before the summer ended. Now, they'll have to wait until next year...

...next weekend Ingrid Michaelson will be performing at LL Bean in Freeport. Something we had been looking forward to.
...we wanted to take a sunset cruise in Casco Bay together.
...we wanted to go to a water park by ourselves to have a little fun.
...we wanted to enjoy happy hour in downtown Portland on Fridays.

With the girls:
...A promised trip to Funtown/Splashtown
...Another visit to Old Orchard Beach
...A visit to Bar Harbor and/or Boothbay Harbor (something we have not yet done while we've been here in Maine)

Even though I am sad for the things that will have to wait for next year, I am thankful for all the wonderful memories we have made this year together. As much as it sounds that I am not thankful for what we do have and what we did do, I so am. I am so very thankful.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Just come already.

As much as I am dreading Tuesday when Kevin leaves. I am almost wishing it would just come. Every time I think of having to hug and kiss him good-bye my eyes just tear up. It is just going to be so hard. I don't want to let him go. I can't help it. I just can't get myself to get over it, though, I am doing better than yesterday, it is still so difficult.

It kills me to see Kevin cry, too. This is probably THE hardest thing we have ever, ever, ever have had to go through together. I don't want Tuesday to come, but, I want it to just be over with. I know he has to go. So, go and come back sooner. Waiting is like dragging this whole ordeal on....and on.....and on. The girls know daddy is leaving, but when? We keep talking about it. They know something is going on. Their concept of time is so skewed. They see our tears. They know. They just don't really get it. I surely don't expect them to. I am kind of glad they don't get it.

I know the girls probably won't ever remember their daddy being gone. Mairead may have distant memories, but I know Lilah and Clara will not. Which is good. But, I surely will. I know people deal with these sorts of issues all of the time. But honestly, it doesn't make it any easier. Some people, like one of my great friends, can see the good in situations like these. Her husband wanted to go. I just can't do that. Maybe if I knew Kevin would be making an impact on lives it could be different (and maybe he will), but right now, I just can't see the positives in this. He was so wronged and that bothers me so much. He does so much for those he works with, and they didn't even give him a chance. I just don't understand...

I try to follow the 'everything happens for a reason' motto....and hopefully I will be able to understand why they needed our Kevin. Our girls daddy. 

So, as much as I want to relish in the time left we have with Kevin before he leaves for longer than I could ever imagine, it will Just me, him and our sweet little girls, I want the time to just be over with so I can stop dreading it. We should be enjoying the last few days of our family vacation, but instead, we are wrapped up in sadness unable to see the good in all of this.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Praying the clock stops...

For anyone who thinks I 'sugar coat' our life is wrong. I try to keep my blogs real with the good, the bad and the ugly all mixed together. Most days our life is pretty damn sweet. I love our life. We are so blessed to have so much in all different directions. And I thank my lucky stars each and every day for all we have together.

Unfortunately, we have hit a pretty tough spot in our pretty little life. I am dreading the day Kevin has to leave for the gulf. I guess you could say I am avoiding life right now. You see, it's 1115am and I'm still in bed. Crying off and on...okay, sobbing. I am in denial this is all really happening. I can't even look at my husband because I just cry. I feel bad because i know he is dealing with similar feelings right now but he needs to be with the girls and the girls need him more than ever. I hate feeling like this...My eyes are puffy. I have a headache. I have no desire to get up. I know I will snap out of it and accept that it isn't a nightmare and it is reality. I keep praying that the clock will stop movibg. I will come around, I have to, but right now, I need time to accept this shit stick handed to us.

I am heartbroken. I feel lost already. I am sad for our girls who have absolutely no clue about what is about to happen to us...

This morning, Mairead asked if I "needed a day to rest". I knew exactly what she was referring to. A book called "The Best Day Ever" where daddy takes his girls out for a fun day while mommy takes a day to herself...or, to rest. After she asked me, I told her I was (feeling guilty). She then asked if today was going to be just like "The Best Day Ever"....I answered and said "I wish....I wish it was the best day ever..."

All I can think about is everything Kevin will miss. I've listed a lot already in the previous entry...but then, while laying here, I am reminded of more...and more...

Maireads 1st day of school....Lilahs first dance class, Maireads first soccer game (Kevin has been waiting for this since I found out I was pregnant with her...tougher for him than I) and so much more. I can't stop myself from thinking about this. It's crippling my mind. Am I being irrational?

Yes. This is going to be so very hard. And I don't mean hard by 'I will be by myself with the girls 24/7' for the next month or two. I can handle the kids. I have help. No problem. What I can't handle is having my husband gone. Missing out on our life in real time. Not celebrating our girls with me. No one for me to say "hey! Kevin, did you see her!?!" and sharing the joy of our girls alongside each other. Watching him smile in joy and excitement at them.

I am so very thankful for family and friends...near and far who are offering support and help. I appreciate it so very much. As always, the girls will have fun just like they do when daddy is at work. I will try to keep their routine as normal as possible without a lot of changing. Of course, there will be the simple adjustments of starting school and such....so, I pray for success. I know we will be fine, with not-so-good days thrown in there. Days like our 5th anniversary will be tough...and the weekend of our trip away into Boston will be awful. Or singing happy birthday to our sweet Clara without him. Reminiscing how perfect her birthday was....clear & bright, like the meaning of her name. I just sob writing this.

As far as trying for a new baby is concerned...I think this whole ordeal has really put things into perspective. It has made us realize what we want in life - pushing all of the petty things aside...remember, we had been on the fence. Kevin leaving has made us both really realize how much we BOTH want a little sister or brother for our girls. I pray it is meant to be for our family and I hope this doesn't affect our desires. Maybe we will be pleasantly surprised...

So. I will continue to struggle and try to accept what is about to happen. I struggle to understand the reason why he has to go. I struggle with this big time - especially when things have been in control down there for a while now. I think society needs to understand that the families of the Gulf aren't the only ones who have been affected by this tragedy. It's so much more than that.


Sent from my iPhone

Thursday, August 12, 2010

When the military sucks.

Today wasn't a good day in the Ferrie household. Actually, it was a pretty shitty day to be totally honest.

If you didn't know, my husband, Kevin, is an officer (lieutenant commander) in the Coast Guard. For the last week, he's been on vacation for a little 'staycation' with the family. I haven't had a moment to write about our trip to the White Mountains of New Hampshire, but it was an awesome time with the girls. I'll post photos soon, I promise. I am a little bogged down right now...

Anyways...today, I am not a fan of the Coast Guard. Why, you ask? Well, we got word today that Kevin is being sent to deal with the [no-oil-to-be-seen] oil spill. Can you sense my sarcasm? Yeah. To say I am upset is an understatement. I've cried. I've screamed. I've thrown shit. I've shut down. I've had irrational moments. It's a total shock. I mean, we've been enjoying our week together as a family, went for a little family walk around the neighborhood and the phone rings. At first, I thought Kevin was annoyed I was chatting with a neighbor for a while, and then, he hit me with the news. Talk about a knife driven into your stomach. Talk about ruining your family vacation.

Our beautiful family walk turned into sadness. Anger. Our plans changed, no special dinner out tonight. The girls had PB &Fluff for dinner. I just shut down and cried. At 10pm, I just had a small bowl of cheerios. I have a major headache. My eyes are puffy. I am nauseated and just sick feeling. I just want to curl up in a cave and stay there....or wake up and have this all be over with.

Kevin could be gone for upwards of 60 days. 60 days without hugging or kissing or touching my husband. 60 days without the girls seeing their daddy. Celebrating Clara's 1st birthday without her daddy. Some people have mentioned - it could be worse. He could be going to Afghanistan or Iraq or some God awful place. Yeah. That's true....but, it's not the length - and anyone can say 'it can be worse' - so if you know of anyone going through something similar, don't say that, it doesn't help.

It is about what we will miss together. I didn't marry someone in the Army or Navy or Air Force. I am not the type of person who could have a husband gone for months or even years at a time. That takes a special....a very special woman to deal with that. I am not her. I need. love. want. my husband around. I need.love.want my husband to raise our children and be there for their first moments. This isn't about 'it could be worse'....It is about what we will miss together...It is about the changes our girls will have to go through while Kevin is gone. Being too young to really grasp the concept of their daddy being away. This isn't just being away for a few days or a week. This is being for weeks. Months. Not only will we miss the small moments together, but we will be missing big ones like these...

Our 5th wedding anniversary.
Kevin's parents are visiting here from Florida in September.
Clara's 1st birthday - that's a killer. 
Kevin & I are signed up to run our first marathon relay together.
A weekend away in Boston for our anniversary to see the Red Sox. 

We're trying to have another baby..............yeah, crazy, I know. But, tough to do while he is away...maybe, he's secretly happy about this? Wait? Did he plan this? I know he didn't...

And lots more...He'll come home. Summer will be over. It will be cold outside. The leaves will be falling. The girls will be bigger.

If you've read previous blogs about trying for numero cuatro, you'll know that we are in kind of a rush...In order to have the baby before we transfer next year, I will need a positive pregnancy test sometime by mid-late October. Yeah, so we're on a time crunch and Kevin being gone certainly doesn't help with that. Being high risk, I surely don't want to switch providers in the middle of my pregnancy, not to mention, moving while being pregnant can't be fun.

It's really upsetting. I just can't fathom not seeing my sweetheart for almost two months. His little girls are going to miss him......and I am going to miss him so much. I have dreaded this moment from the time Kevin told me they were starting to send people down to deal with the oil spill. To be honest, I thought since the well has been capped, and NO friggin' oil, that the chances are pretty small of him going anywhere. That they would actually start pulling back...Boy. Was I wrong...I am also pretty upset with the way things were handled. Since Kevin wasn't working, I feel as though he was set up...everyone else that was a potential had a say as to why they couldn't go - of course, no one wants to go, but, I feel as though Kevin didn't have a chance. Why didn't they call him during the discussion? It just isn't right. It could have been handled differently, and I am sorry if I offend anyone here...but you're taking a daddy away from three little girls who are 4 and under, and have absolutely no understanding of all of this.

Call me bitter, but I just don't understand what is going on down there...it's plastered all over the media how there is no oil.....no oil, so why the hype? Believe me, I am not undermining the potential issues down there with the fishery and wildlife, but....really? You have to keep taking people? You have to keep taking people for 60 days??? I really don't get it. There isn't a better option than this? It would be different is there was oil spewing out. But. There. Is. No. Oil. According to the Coast Guard Commandant himself tonight 'the bottom kill is finished and sealed' - huh? Really? Then why the frig are you taking my husband away for months? Why? Can you explain this to our girls? Because I don't fucking understand.

You also may think that we may be getting more money for him going down there. Nope. You're wrong. I mean he'll get a small amount each day to cover food. I mean, I am pretty sure the men and woman serving over seas are getting more money because they are in dangerous locations (and rightfully so) So, actually, by him going down there, we'll be losing money. I'll need a babysitter to help out during the week to help keep me and the girls sane. Or the cost of us flying down to Louisiana so we can see each other. That alone will cost a decent amount of money. So, we are losing out on a whole hell of a lot more than time with each other. Thankfully, I will be able to take advantage of my parents, but they're an hour away and they work, so their time is limited.

Does BP know this? Do they know how much they have inconvenienced military families? I don't think they do. Not only have the families of the Gulf been affected by this, but the families of the Coast Guard have been negatively affected as well. You want to know something? I know a decent amount of people who have been sent down there - and only one....if that has seen ANY oil.

So, I will try to pull myself together before Kevin leaves most likely on Tuesday. It will be a tough few days leading up and I will do my best to stay strong for our girls. Right now, I am a mess. And that's okay. I suppose. I wish our girls were old enough to understand that daddy is going to be gone for a while...they're used to having their daddy around all of the time. They've been lucky like that.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Friends Reunited

Friends reunited...Zoe, Mairead, Lily & Lilah

The Fam Damily

Having a husband in the Coast Guard requires us to move every 3-4 years. It can be tough, especially when you form close relationships with friends! When we had Mairead and lived in Fairfax, I was lucky enough to meet some wonderful ladies who had girls the same age as Mairead. We did everything together, and I was am thankful for their friendship. We shared lots of laughs together - we helped keep our insanity at a minimum!

Moving from Virginia was bittersweet. We were sad to be leaving good friends, but we were also excited to live closer to family. Thankfully, one of our close friends (Christina) from Virginia had family in New Hampshire. They travel to New Hampshire for a few weeks every summer to visit, so thankfully, we've been able to see each other every year since we moved. It's been great for the girls to stay in touch. Since Mairead was just two when we moved, her memories are few and far between of Virginia, so this is great for her.
Lilah poses for a quick photo
"Wait a minute, Lilah!"

This year, Mairead really remembered seeing Lily & Eaton last year, so she was really excited to see her friends. Not only did we get to see Christina & family, but we also got to see Jacie and her family, too! They also came up for a few days with Christina, so it was like one big reunion. Christina & Jacie are still very close friends in Virginia. Their girls are the same age as Mairead, and then they each had a boy right around the time we moved from Virginia, who are now 2.
Jacie and Zoe
Mairead jumps in!

On Tuesday, we packed up the car, the kids, the dogs and of course some adult beverages and headed for a two hour car ride to Western New Hampshire. The girls were ecstatic! Mairead must have asked a gazillion times when we were going to be there! When we got there, the girls started playing immediately. They were so cute together. It's amazing how much they've changed in a year. I couldn't help but think of when we first met. The girls were about 8 months old. I met them at a baby yoga class...how things have changed. This year, there were 7 kids, all 4 and under. Five girls. Two boys. Three dogs.

From left (Zoe, Lily, Mairead & Lilah)
We celebrated Marshall (Christina's husband) and Jacie's birthday. Had some awesome food, lots of great drinks and tons of laughs! We attempted to let the kids have a "camp-out" in one of the bedrooms, they lasted...ummmmmmm about 5 minutes, until two of the girls started crying. That was the end of that. We brought all the kids upstairs along with their pillows and blankets and let them camp out there. That lasted about 10 minutes. It was late and the girls couldn't hang any longer. Little by little, each girl ended up in their mommy and daddy's bed. Maybe next year they'll be ready! It was cute while it lasted!

The next day, Mairead & Lilah were up at 630am. Yes. 630am. That is like an hour and a half earlier than usual, I knew it would be a long day for them! Thankfully, Christina's kids were up, so they had fun! Once everyone was up, we headed down to the lake. The girls had a blast together! They swam and swam and swam some more. They played in the paddle boats, kayaks and practiced jumping in. We stayed at the water until about 3pm when we headed back to the house to say our good-byes.
Clara shows off her new moves!
Eaton, Lilah & Mairead looking at their new frog :)

Zoe, Lily & Mairead say 'Good-Bye"

The girls hugged and hugged some more. It was so great to get our girls together again (and the rest of our kiddos). I am so glad to have been able to keep in touch with our friends. We're up for transfer next spring (2011) and maybe we'll end up back in Virginia again. If so, it would be an easy transfer for us since we already have friends for us and our girls.
The "crew" minus Clara - Quinten, Zoe, Mairead, Lily, Lilah & Eaton
The crew getting rowdy - obviously tired of our photo session!