Kissing Hawaii Goodbye

After a three week hiatus due to a much anticipated trip to Hawaii – this blog post is long over due! Only getting to see your significant other will truly make you appreciate every moment and treasure the short time together. After three years, saying goodbye never gets any easier and I am counting down the days to Christmas! Since I am completely shameful that I haven’t been posting, I thought I’d share a few of my favorite moments from my Hawaiian adventure with y’all! I sincerely hope you enjoy those photos as much as I do!

Secrets of an Anonymous Tweeter

After yesterday’s post on 32 Things That Makes Me Happy, I found a little inspiration to share something most people do not know about me: I was an antonymous tweeter. I’m sure that many of you follow a parody account or another an anonymous user that’s relatable to your life, but do you really understand the grunt work behind running that type of account? Well, I can honestly say that I do and it was one of the most emotionally draining things I have ever done.

It began when my boyfriend joined the Army. None of my friends or family could possibly understand what I was going through when my love of five years was shipped out to boot camp. I searched and searched for a way to connect with other girls who I could share my experience with, and oddly enough I found it on Twitter. Using the hashtags #milso and #milsoproblems, I opened doors to a whole new world that many of you probably have no idea exists. After connecting and forming friendships with other military significant others (MilSOs), I decided it was high time I create my own anonymous Twitter account.

After months creating my account and gaining well-over 1,000 followers I became a support system for other girls new to the military lifestyle. Each morning I would design inspirational tweets. Throughout the day I’d share my own battles with finding strengthen in being away from my significant other. Each night I would end the day with hope that tomorrow is a new start and they were one day closer to seeing their love. All the while, I would constantly respond to messages that flooded my inbox to help other girls get through the worst part of a long distance relationship – the first few months.

Maybe it’s just me, but I loved every minute of knowing that I was helping another person overcome the trials and tribulations of military relationships. I had no idea how time consuming and draining it could be – it takes a truly special person to be an anonymous tweeter. Being a full time college student and working part time put ended up putting my Twitter account on the back burner. From tweeting all day to sporadically, I felt like I was doing a disservice to the MilSO world. And then one day during my final weeks of my Senior year of collage and after months of running my account, I just stopped. I found that my own emotions were running high each time I logged on and I couldn’t find the time to continue.

If you are thinking of or are currently running an anonymous Twitter account, please know what you are in for and how much your followers depend on you. Depending on the content of your account, you can mean so much to so many people even though they have no idea who you truly are. Sometimes, connecting with a stranger helps people reveal their real thoughts and feelings of their current situation.

 

Must Read Monday: Home Front

If you know anything about deployment then you understand the toll it not only takes on the person who served, but the loved ones of that person. In her book Home Front, Kristin Hannah gives the emotionally powerful story of Michael and Jolene. Trying to balance the life as a mother and the role as wife of a district attorney, Jolene is also facing the reality of her upcoming deployment. As Jolene sends letters to her family from the front lines, she sugar coats every horrible moments that is exploding around her. When tragedy strikes, Michael is facing is on battle on the home front and has to do it all alone.

Home-Front-by-Kristin-Hannah

It’s books like these make me make so proud of the sacrifice our men and women in uniform make every day. This is truly a beautiful book and brings the realities of war to those of us who do not live the military life on a daily basis. Browse here read more on Home Front!

A Hawaiian Escape

Smitten, overjoyed, ecstatic, head-over-heels, thrilled – are just some of the words that come to mind, when I think about my upcoming trip to Hawaii!

One of the perks of my love being in the military is that he is stationed in one of the most beautiful islands on Earth! Now that the very last detail of my trip is booked, my mind is completely consumed about being there with him and enjoying everything that Hawaii has to offer. I am lucky that this will be my second trip and I am counting down the days (105 days left!). I couldn’t help but share a few of my favorite moments from last year’s trip and I know you’ll be swooning over them as much as I do! Enjoy!!

Long Distance Love

In elementary school everyone brought their favorite pull-apart Valentine’s (and sometimes candy) to exchange with their fellow classmates. In high school, the principal started dismissal early on Valentine’s just to call girls’ names over the intercom who received flowers. Talk about humiliating  if your boyfriend didn’t get you flowers that day!! Not to leave you guessing, but yes I was the girl who picked out sparkly, Disney princess Valentines cards to exchange with my classmates and my name was called over the intercom to pick up my overpriced, hot pink roses from my sweet boyfriend.

My boyfriend and I have been long distance longer than I would like to admit. Let’s just say thanks to my college career and his military career, we’ve spent more Valentine’s a part than together. I won’t sugar coat it, it’s easy to get caught up in this holiday carried by companies like Florists, Hallmark, and Godiva Chocolates. To be honest, there was one Valentine’s Day where I stayed in bed in cried  because being surrounded by love made me miss the one that I love. But,thankfully that isn’t me any more. Being in a long distance relationship makes you stronger and you learn to do one simple thing to get through hard days: you live.

LOVE

Sure, I could spend today crying enough to fill up the Atlantic Ocean, just because I saw few silly hearts every place I go and couples displaying a little too much PDA. I have never been bitter about spending Valentine’s day alone and nor to do I plan to. I’m going to call my boyfriend and tell him how much I love him, just like I do every single day. Thanks to Graduate School, I will be spending the evening with my wonderful cohort and may even bake them a sweet treat.

Any holiday spent away from you significant other is not easy. I consider myself very lucky that I can talk to my boyfriend on phone or FaceTime, because many military significant others do not even get that! I hope everyone cherishes the one they love not just today, but every day. Oh, and please do yourself a favor and do not get caught up in all of the commercialization of this holiday!

Homecoming Day!

Today is the day that I have been waiting for for SIX months! I get to pick up my Solider from the airport for him to spend the Christmas at home!! There is nothing like having someone who means the world to you home during the holidays and we are so blessed that he is able to do so!

As long as we have been together and as many times as I have picked him up from the airport, I know I’m going to get butterflies when step on the escalator to get to “arrivals.” My palms will get sweaty and my heart will be racing for him to appear around the corner of the security line. While this is so cheesy to say, it is so true: after all these years my heart skips a beat the moment I see him again. Even though our time together will be short, I will be the happiest girl in the world when he arrives home!

Love is a beautiful thing!
I hope y’all are having a wonderful day as well!


A Little Thing Called Love

It was a crisp, fall Friday night and I was putting my cheerleading uniform on to cheer for my high school’s football team. Like so many of my fellow classmates we lived for Friday night spent under the lights of our small town “stadium.” Little did I know that that night would be one that I would still remember eight years later.

I noticed him right away. We went to church camp together when we were kids and he was from a neighboring county, a rival of my high school’s football team. He was tall, lanky and had piercing blue eyes that could stop you dead in your tracks. It was that night that we began “talking” {as we referred to it then} and just a few short months later he would ask me to be his girlfriend. Today marks the eighth year anniversary of that day.

Our relationship as been anything but easy. Right out of high school I went to the University of Alabama and during that time he moved to the southern part of Virginia to work. During my sophomore year of college I became incredibly sick. I returned to Virginia and he was by my side the entire time, even when I gave him every opportunity to leave. After I was finally better, he decided to join the Army and now he has been a United States Solider for more than two years. Needless to say, our hometown romance turned into a long distance love that we have held onto for quite sometime.

We always joke about how people ask us relationship advice when we have only dated each other. Long distance relationships are not something I’d want any couple should go through! It is really hard and can make you crazy, depressed and even insane. Our biggest motivator is that we both wanted to accomplish so many goals and we were each other’s biggest support. I wanted to go to college and get a degree and he wanted to serve his country just as his father and grandfathers had done.  Simply,  our ability to not be selfish is what has gotten us through is.

I know being in a long distance relationship will not be forever. We will be able to live our happy ever after one day and when that day comes I will be the happiest girl in the world. I am so lucky to have found the man of my dreams at sixteen and to have had eight wonderful years with him! Cheers to many more years to come and only three more days until he comes home for Christmas!!

 

White Christmas Sangria

When it comes to fancy drinks I am all for ordering one at a bar, restaurant and all the above. However, I have never been the best a making such drinks simply because I am not great at mixing equal portions of alcohol and mixer. Luckily, I surprised myself recently when making White Christmas Sangria for a work decorating party and it was a hit! The most time consuming part was cutting the apples and trust me if I can make it so can you! I even dressed up the cup by garnishing them with rosemary!

Ingredients:

1.5 L Bottle of Pinto Grigio
1 C White Grade Juice
1 C Club Soda
1/2 C Sugar
2 Granny Smith Apples
2 Braeburn Apples
2 1/2 C Cranberries
1 Lg Spring of Rosemary {and some for garnish}

Here’s the recipe!

(1) Cut all the apples in equal sizes
(2) Combine the ingredients
(3) Stir together until sugar dissolves
(4) Chill for no more than 6 hours!

For garnish I lightly tosses small sprigs of rosemary in water and then in sugar! Next, I placed them in the refrigerator to chill and harden! It made for a beautiful decoration once the drinks were pored!

Cheers!


The Excitement is Building!!

Words CANNOT express how excited I am that this day has arrived! Today marks exactly ONE month until my beau comes home for Christmas!!

photo-2

I know I have slightly touched on this in a previous post, but I am the proud girlfriend of a United States Solider. My boyfriend is currently stationed in Hawaii {lucky him!} and it will be six months since the last time that we saw each other when he arrives home! I am so blessed that we only have to wait such a small amount of time to see each other, because so many military families go many more months until they see their service men or women.

We are a few weeks shy of our 8 year anniversary…yes we are high school sweethearts! He has stood by my side through some of the biggest, hardest and happiest moments of my life and I could not think of a better person to share those memories with. No,  there aren’t wedding bells in our future {yet!}. Yes, we love each other and we are madly in love, but there is something to be said for finding yourself  and becoming financially stable before you say those “I do’s.” We believe that we are bettering ourselves for each other to be a stronger couple when we are ready for such a big step.

Needless to say one month from today I will be acting like a giddy little girl on Christmas morning, trying to hold it together and get ready to pick him up from the airport. There is nothing more beautiful and wonderful than being in love and I am beyond blessed that God has brought us together.