Sunday, January 30, 2011

Never too late for a Resolution

I have a confession.  I am completely unorganized right now.  If you know me at all, then you know that this little fact is driving me absolutely up the wall.  To my left I have 3 boxes that need to be put into storage, to my front, I have wedding stuff just waiting to be filed away, to my right I have a dishwasher that needs to be unloaded and reloaded....and behind the door, I have a closet that isn't color coded.  Yes, I am having a panic moment.

However, I have decided to make a resolution (and it can't be called a New Year's resolution because it's pretty much already February).  I am going to focus more on being organized, but also on not sweating the small stuff--also something that is VERY hard for me.

In other news, Konstantin and I have begun to read "The Total Money Makeover" by Dave Ramsey. 

My Aunt and Uncle recommended it to us as newlyweds, and we are looking forward to learning how to best use our money in a way that is beneficial to our marriage but also glorifying to the Lord.  I have heard wonderful things about Dave Ramsey and I will continue to keep you updated as to what we learn from the book and ultimately what we think once we're through it.

Another resolution I have made to myself is to try to do at least one thing a day to bless my husband.  You wives might be thinking "why in the world would you want to do more than you already do? Don't we already bless our husbands?" 
The answer is, Yes.  We already do bless our husbands, but this challenge is about taking that extra step to go above and beyond the normal.  My parents always told me that marriage isn't about 50/50, it's about 100/100.  My challenge to you for the next month would be to take that 100% and do 110% this month.  Be proactive about blessing your spouse--even if it's something small like writing a note to leave in their lunch.  I really believe that it is those small things, that little "extra" step that can make all the difference.

So there you have it.  My 3 not so New Years resolutions.  I challenge you to do the same--pick 3 things you want to really work on for the month of February.  Feel free to post them in the comments section, and we can work through our resolutions together!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Our Ridiculously HUGE Puppy

This post will be short and sweet, since I'm not feeling too well and I need to head to bed....
But I just needed to share the ridiculousness that is our puppy (mind you, she's 13 weeks old)

This picture was taken 2 days after we got her:

This picture was taken last Saturday....

We live in a one bedroom apartment.....our 13 week old puppy is now 23 pounds.  We are doomed. But she's cute, so it's okay

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Challenging is not Equal to Impossible

Most days, I feel as though my marriage to K is the same as any typical marriage.  We are normal and pretty basic from day to day....however, being a military family does have its challenges that I don't always recognize until the heat of the moment.  I knew that we'd have some unique challenges with our unique situation, but I have only recently began to grasp the significance of our military life. 
I am one of the first of my friends to get married, so I don't have other marriages that I can really compare my own to except for those of people in my own family.  I grew up in a fairly large family of 6, where my mom worked part time as a nurse and my dad worked full time at the post office.  I saw how dad would come home every night around 5pm, we'd always have dinner together, mom and dad would tuck us in at night and go to bed together around 10pm.  That was my normal and that is what I thought I would have one day for my own marriage.
When I met K, I never expected the results of our relationship.  I had never been exposed to the military before him and only knew it from what we read in the papers and saw on the news (meaning: deployments, war and deaths).  It wasn't until I became one that I really understood what being a military wife meant.  People so readily recognize our husbands as serving our country, and so often we get lost in the shuffle.  A good friend of mine put it best when she called military wives the "forgotten ranks"
I have always been a planner.  I like to know where my days will go, what I will be doing, how it will be done.  I never saw myself marrying a military man, but then again, God's plan for our lives may not be what we expected.  My favorite Bible verse is from Proverbs and says "In his heart, a man plots his course, but the Lord determines his steps" (16:9).  I had my life planned, and then K happened.  I laugh because our God has a sense of humor.

All of that to say that on certain days, I realize the truly unique situation our family is in.  My husband does not work a 9-5 Monday through Friday job.  I never know what time we can eat dinner, because some days he gets home at 6, others he doesn't get home until 9.  We don't get to go to bed at the same time every night (in fact, he's been in bed for an hour and a half already).  It has been an adjustment for me to switch from my old "normal" to our "normal".  What I have come to realize the more and more military and non-military wives I meet is that there is no normal.  Every family has its challenges and things they need to adapt to on a day to day basis.  Ultimately, it is our reaction to those challenges and the ways we choose to deal with them that truly matters.

Being a military spouse, you learn to deal with a variety of things in new and unique ways.  Very rarely do you actually complain about things.  Don't get me wrong, we cry and get frustrated.  But once we vent and have a good cry, we move on.  K will be deploying late this Spring.  We will be apart for his birthday (for a 2nd year), my birthday (for the 3rd year) and for our first wedding anniversary.  Does that really stink?  Oh yes, but you learn new and creative ways to make those moments special.  Perhaps the best thing I have learned is that a day is "just a day".  We celebrated K's birthday last year 3 months after the fact.  My military wife friends are rubbing off on me--you just learn to be creative and flexible I guess.

I have had people tell me that they could never do what me and the thousands of other military wives do on a day to day basis.  When you think about it though, most of us said the same thing before we met our husbands.  We are no different from wives whose husbands come home every night.  We are not superheroes.  We are simply women standing behind our men, through the good times and bad.  Taking our vows to a whole new level.  I am, by no means, the posterchild of what a military wife should be.  I still complain, I still have my fits when I find out we have to change plans again, I still have so much to learn....but the Lord has provided me with friends who are in that same place.

Our lives are challenging but with the support of friends, family and our Lord, they aren't impossible.  I humbly admit that I have so much that I don't know, but my heart is open and I have a heart for other young women in similar situations.  I believe that military marriages can be just as fulfilling and incredible as a civilian marriage.  I want to see the divorce rate for military couples decrease.  I want these couples to know that while our situation and challenges are unique, that we serve a God bigger than all of that.  That our marriages can thrive rather than survive.

This may be just a simple blog, but this is my heart, and I look forward to learning and growing with you, my readers, as we tackle this journey together.

Time for a Change

I'm going to try really hard to keep this updated more often and more frequently....but I also feel like it's time to change up some things with my blog.  Keep checking back to see all the new things I'm hoping to add in the near future (I'm still learning all of this blogging nonesense, so it might take me a few tries before I get it right)

In other news, there is about 8 inches of snow on the ground.  Meshka is loving it.  I am definately not.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Baby, it's cold outside!

It's snowing again. If you know me at all, I hate cold and snow--unless I'm snowboarding in it. Unfortunately, I haven't been snowboarding in almost 3 years! I would kill to go again this year, but it's just not in the cards right now....maybe next winter :)

It's definately snowing quite a bit. We're supposed to get between 4 and 6 inches tonight, which I guess is okay since it's the weekend, but I was really looking forward to going to church tomorrow. We have been blessed to find a church that we like and feel like the Lord is feeding us there.

Today was quite busy. I worked a bit this morning, as I'm still doing some occasional formatting for the researcher at UNMC. Then I went to mom and dad's since Uncle Kelley and Uncle Kevin's families were there. We had a great time together. I am so blessed to have a family that loves each other dearly.
While we were there, Meshka got stuck under the porch. again. She seems to think she's the same size as my parents' dauschund and can't seem to put two and two together that she's just a bit too large for the opening to under the porch. It's somewhat hilarious, but you feel bad for her too. I wanted to get a picture of her little head looking at me while we were pulling her out, but she was squirming too much. I'm sure it will happen again though, so I'll try to get one. It's pretty funny.

This afternoon, I went over to a friend's house for a get together with a bunch of wives from Offutt. It has been so fun for me to meet so many new friends who are in the same position that we are in. It is truly a unique lifestyle, so to have someone who can relate, means the world.

I'll post pictures later. I'm just a little tired and probably need to head to bed.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Let it snow?

Well, I guess it was going to come sooner or later. With the lack of snow we've had, it's about time to get dumped on a bit. We've gotten about 6 inches so far today, with at least 4 more expected tonight--it's definately deep
I'll have to take a picture of Meshka. The snow is almost as tall as she is--but she LOVES the snow. It's pretty cute, and makes the chilly potty breaks a bit more bearable.

Monday, January 3, 2011

A Recap of 2010

Wishing you and your loved ones a very happy 2011! I thought it would be appropriate to recap our 2010, since it was such an eventful year for all of us:

2010 started with us in two different states, about 1200 miles apart. K was stationed at Tyndall AFB in Panama City, Florida. I was in Lincoln, Nebraska finishing my final semester of my Bachelor's Degree. It was definately challenging being apart as much as we were this year, to say otherwise would be denying the truth--but we made it and it only made us stronger in the end.
I was fortunate to get to visit Florida and my incredible fiance twice between February and March. It was a nice change from the horribly cold winter we had in Nebraska! it was even better that I was able to spend time with the man of my dreams!

Because of the nature of the program K was in, it ended up not being a good fit for him--and the Air Force decided to try a different career path. He was transferred to Security Forces and it ended up being a much better fit for his personality and preferences.

I spent the majority of the Spring working on my senior thesis. I researched the differences in changes of mood between women using hormonal contraceptives and those who weren't. I had a blast doing my research and would love to keep pursuing it in the future!

My family got our first pet in years. We adopted Tebow (Bo) the dauschund/poodle mix in January and he has been an incredible addition to the Garvey household. Reagan and Ryan love him!(and I do too--he only listens to me, which I find hilarous)

Perhaps the biggest thing that happened in the Spring was my graduation from Nebraska Wesleyan University. It was such an incredible feeling to be done with school, knowing how hard I had worked to acheive that goal. It was challenging that I didn't have a job lined up, and it took me 8 months to find one related to my degree--but knowing I had that piece of paper made everything worth it. I never would have been able to accomplish such a great thing without the support from my family and friends, for which I'm ever grateful.

About a week before I graduated, K moved to Camp Bullis in San Antonio, Texas to begin his Security Forces training. It was a big change from Florida--much drier!!
I was able to go down and visit over his birthday/4th of July weekend and we had so much fun! I met lots of fun people and made great memories! I was able to go to Sea World which I really enjoyed--but having the company of my fiance made it even better!

Mid-June my entire extended family went up to Wisconsin for a vacation and to celebrate the first marriage of the grandkids--Zachary married the beautiful Katie, and the family grew by one more.

My immediate family decided to take a small vacation to Kansas City as one last hurrah before I was married. It was a very special time to spend with them as it was the last vacation with 6 "Garveys".

After 3 and a half long months of hard work and dedication, K graduated from Security Forces training. I have never been prouder--he worked so incredibly hard! I was unable to make it to the graduation, but his parents were very kind and brought back pictures for me.

The exciting part of him graduating was that he was finally able to come home as we got orders to Offutt AFB in Bellevue, Nebraska. Of all places we could go, the Air Force (God ordained) decided that we were supposed to stay in Nebraska! It was wonderful to have him home, especially so close to our wedding day!

Fall went by way too quickly, speeding past my birthday, bridal shower, bachelorette party, wedding rehearsal and finally to our wedding day.

I could make an entire post about our wedding day. It was magical. After 16 long months of being engaged, I was so excited to know that we were able to say our vows and be united in marriage.
I remember not sleeping a wink the night before. I was a bundle of excited nerves. I woke up around 6 and the day flew by from there. The girls all got their hair done together at the house and I was able to share so many special moments with them.
Perhaps one of my favorite moments of that day was the first time K and I saw each other. We requested no one but us and our photographer was there for that moment and it was so special to us both. Perhaps the most intimate moment of the day.
The wedding day flew by so fast but we had so much fun. It was a beautiful day, which was a blessing to me as the end of October can be very unpredictable as far as weather goes. We had 75 degree weather without a cloud in the sky. Two hundred people were able to come and we felt so incredibly blessed.

We spent our wedding night at the Front Porch Bed and Breakfast in Ashland. If you ever need a romantic getaway, this is the place! Since we couldn't take our honeymoon right away, this was the perfect choice--romantic, close by and all ours! I'll leave it at that.

I feel so blessed to know that K was able to spend the holidays with us this year. Thanksgiving and Christmas were wonderful and I truly have an amazing husband.

We also got a puppy named Meshka. She's a character and knows how to push her "mommy's" buttons, but I love her anyway. Best Christmas gift ever!

As far as this year goes, it was one of ups and downs, but knowing the Lord never changes helped us get through each moment. Having an incredible family and fabulous friends surrounding me, as well as being blessed with the best husband in the world, I will cherish this past year in ways I can't ever describe in words.

Blessings to you all