...that I posted another blog after more than a 12 month hiatus!! And after a hiatus that long, there is much to blog about, especially when you live in Europe!! So if you are following, be on the lookout for new blog posts in the near future!! Tschuss!
Sunday, February 10, 2013
Monday, December 12, 2011
We made it through our first week in Germany! I am learning how different things are here compared to the States. Here are just a few of the things that I have learned:
Posted by The Power Family at Monday, December 12, 2011
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
A dear friend recently blogged an ABC update on her life; I thought it was a fun idea so here goes nothing...or everything...
A- Adventure- We are about to embark on a new adventure as a military family. This new adventure takes us not only to a new town, but to a new country! Growing up in the same town, I never really experienced life outside of South Carolina, other than the annual trips to Mamu and Papu's for Thanksgiving, in Biloxi, Mississippi and the occasional vacations or random trips out of state! And let me not forget the BEST graduation gift I received after high school, a cruise to Mexico with my childhood best friend!! I'm ready to take on this new adventure, so let the new adventure begin!!! *quivers in her Uggs* :)
B- Birthday- Yes, yes, I am about to add another year to the ranks! One more year and I will hit the BIG 3-0! And let me tell you, I couldn't be more excited about putting my 20's behind me. (Don't ask...wouldn't want to bore you with the list of mistakes that I have made in this decade) But don't go making a fuss about my day of birth; birthdays certainly aren't as exciting as they were when I was younger. It most definitely doesn't help that my birthday falls on one of the most anticipated holidays of the year...Halloween. But don't get me wrong, I truly enjoy seeing the joy in my children's eyes when they get all dressed up! It's definitely worth sacrificing my celebration for...and that's what Mother's Day is for anyways!! *hint, hint* ;)
C- Christmas- I can't believe we won't be in the United States for Christmas this year, but how beautiful it will be in our new home! For the last 7 years, we have spent Christmas with my in-laws, in South Carolina and in Maryland, where they moved in 2004. Christmas had always been a bittersweet holiday for me, because I grew up in a broken home. It was difficult as a kid to put on a happy face when the mood on Christmas morning wasn't sheer excitement. It was an easy decision to choose to spend Christmas with my in-laws; not that I don't love my family, if you know me, you know that my family, (my parents, step parents, sister, step sisters, step brothers) are my life, and I wouldn't be who I am without them; but splitting a holiday like Christmas with my crazy big family is impossible without creating a TON of chaos and stress, especially on our kids. My husband's family goes all out for Christmas. I had never seen a Christmas tree as big as theirs. The oneness of their family union was a delight to experience. It has been my greatest privilege to share in their traditions every year, and I am not quite sure how I will fare without them this year. Think I can convince the in-laws to join us in Europe for Christmas?? Probably not, but a girl can wish, right?!? ;)
D- Diet- I know, I know...you shouldn't call it a diet. It's a lifestyle change! Yes, I know, but for some reason, my life style doesn't want to change to include giving up certain foods, mainly ALL sweets. I have to give a shout out to my sweet ole' Daddy who gave me this thing I call a sweet tooth!! To be honest, I have struggled with emotional eating for a long time. There hasn't been many times when I have been upset or under great stress that I didn't turn to the pantry to ease my pain. I desperately want to end this cycle so I can be healthy and confident; okay, honestly, I do want to be healthy, it is important to me that I live a long life, so I can be around for my boys, but I would REALLY love to be comfortable in my own skin! I've been praying that the fruits of the Spirit would become more and more evident in my life, I just pray that the self-control attribute becomes more evident quicker!! :S
E- Emotions- Which emotion would you like to talk about?? I have about 15 I can spew out at you right now that I am feeling, and yes, all at once! :) I have been a big ball of emotions these past few weeks. I got really spoiled while we were living at Fort Bragg. Like I said, I spent all my life, up until 2003 when Joe and I married, in South Carolina; I have what military families refer to as "roots". Like it or not, I have them, and I am very proud of where I grew up! My Daddy had the choice to serve active duty in the Navy, but he knew what that would mean for my sister and I, so he sacrificed his Navy career for us and served 20 years in the Navy Reserves instead. What that meant for us growing up was that my Dad was gone a lot of the weekends, but we had stability and a permanent home. Never in a million years did I think I would grow up and leave that home I once knew. I can remember being a kid and telling my Momma that I would never leave home, even when I was married. I told her that my husband and I would just live with her too! We lived just 3 hours from my family while living at Fort Bragg. We were blessed to be there for 7 years, not really experiencing the sacrifices military families make when they pick up and start over somewhere new. Moving to Oklahoma this past April just about killed me on the inside. Like I said, my family is my life, and I often feel like I can't breath when I am far from them. My family has suffered and conquered more than most families even dream about in their worst nightmares. I think that is what binds us together. Needless to say, it doesn't take much to make me cry these days!! :'(
F- Fall- Oh fall!! I love everything about fall!! I love the smells and the colors! I love fall festivals and carving pumpkins. I love the way the crisp air feels when you breathe it in and the way it cools your feet when you walk outside barefoot. I love the comfort foods that come with the chilliness of the season. I love the smell of bonfires and fires burning in the fireplace. I love snuggling under blankets because you don't want to turn on the heat and I love the way the heater smells when you finally break down and turn it on!! I love seeing kids jump into huge piles of leaves. Everything about fall gives me the warm, fuzzy feeling. When I think about fall, I think about togetherness. I think about families coming together for Thanksgiving. I think about traditions and the legacy I want to leave to my children, one of a parent who loves the Lord and lived her life accordingly. *still working on that legacy...I am a work in progress, what can I say?!?*
G- Germany- As I already pointed out, I am a big ball of emotions, but mostly I am excited for our adventure to Germany. We will be able to experience things and see places that most people only dream about...England, Paris, Venice, Prague, Florence, and the list goes on. Did I mention we are going to be living in a small German town, nestled in the Bavarian Mountains?? It just doesn't get better than that!! I can only imagine what Christmas will be like in Germany, maybe like a Thomas Kincaid painting. I am excited to take part in their culture and learn their language...let's just hope I can pass their drivers' test. ;)
H- Hmmm- I bet you would love to know what I am thinking right now...but I think I will just keep you guessing, maybe I will tell you Y later!!
I- Ikea- I don't know how I missed out on the craze that comes with a love for Ikea...until now!! I LOVE me some Ikea!! And I am very happy to announce that Ikea will be accommodating me in Germany! There are lots of Ikea stores in Germany, where I will be purchasing a few new things for our new home!! *does the cabbage patch dance several times over* (no need to roll your eyes, I know I am quirky, but I like that about me) :)
J- Journey- I have definitely been on a journey, a spiritual journey, that is. I might have grown up in a broken home and experienced some horrific things in my life, but I am lucky girl. For one, my parents love me, and I have never felt that I was too far to feel that. I, by far, think it is more important for your child to feel loved by their parents than for their parents to love each other. Sure, it would have nice to have a Godly example of marriage set before me, but God sets the example for us in the Bible, so I have no excuse there. Secondly, I grew up in a Christian home. I know that sounds weird since my parents divorced and some Christians judge harshly when it comes to divorce; but God forgives all sins when asked, and I have no doubt that my parents' failed marriage has long been forgiven. I attended private, Christian schools for most of my life, where Bible was a daily subject. "Hiding God's Word in your heart" was part of the curriculum. Because I attended Christian schools for most of my life, some could say I lived a sheltered life, and I guess in a way I did. Being a Christian was so much easier when I was younger, because I knew it all in my head. Transferring that knowledge to my heart has been difficult. I know in my head that Jesus loves me, but I struggle with feeling that I am not worthy of His love. I am glad that I am on this journey, because that means that I am still growing in my walk with the Lord...a work in progress... a work that I pray He progressively molds into the person He wants me to be, even with all my imperfections.
K- Kendrick Brothers- I don't think these two men will ever grasp the change that they have made in our world. One little movie project called "Flywheel", turned into "Facing the Giants", "Fireproof" and "Courageous". Flywheel was made on a $20,000 budget and as an outreach to their community in Albany, Georgia, but turned into a nationwide phenomenon. The Kendrick Brothers have gone on to making million dollar, hit movies that have changed lives all over the world. I haven't seen Courageous yet, but I CAN'T wait to see it! If you haven't seen their other movies, I encourage you to pick them up...they are worth the money to buy and re-watch from time to time!!!
L- Life- Life is so precious. One thing military families can truly appreciate is life in the moment. Most of us, at one point or another, have been on the waiting end of a long deployment, giving thanks to God that our soldier came home safely. Some of us don't get that chance. It absolutely breaks my heart when I see a widow cry the loss of her husband, or of that child who asks when her Daddy is coming home, when her mother knows he isn't. I have witnessed the tears of a mother, who shows pictures of her son to her precious grandchild, knowing that precious little person will never know their Daddy. I have seen so much death in my life. Life seems so complicated sometimes, but the truth is that living is the easy part, or at least is should be; death is much harder to understand. Death brings about questions that can never be answered. Life is too precious to let it pass you by.
M- Moving- Let's see, how many times have we moved now? We moved from Charleston to Oklahoma in 2003, moved from Oklahoma to North Carolina in April of 2004, moved out of our apartment in Fayetteville into on-post housing on Fort Bragg in October of 2004, moved to a new house on Fort Bragg in September of 2007, moved back to Oklahoma in April of 2011...so that's 5 moves...I should be an expert by now, right?!? RIIIIIIIIGGGGHHHTTT...did you catch the sarcasm? ;) But lucky for me, I am selling a lot of stuff, so that will give the Army less to break on our move to Germany!! Ha! Note: I am having a moving sale this Saturday, so if you live in the Lawton area...COME BUY MY STUFF!!!
N- Nathan and Noah- Oh boy, where do I begin!?! I love these two monsters more than I ever knew I could. Being a mother is THE hardest job in the world. And I have learned that looking after their spiritual needs is much harder than their physical needs. I don't know that I was prepared for motherhood at the ripe old age of 21, but I am so glad that God blessed me with my children. They truly teach me more than I could ever teach them. The innocence of a child can not be matched by anything in this world. I wish I could see the world through the eyes of a child again; it gives you a perspective on life that is so pure and clear. Nothing in this world warms my heart more than to hear the innocent prayers of my children. How lucky am I that I am the child of parents that pray for me!! Motherhood has given me an appreciation for my parents and how RIGHT they were, even during my rebellious, stubborn teen years!
O- Open Book- I want my life to be an open book! I want to be humble and vulnerable. I do, really....and here comes the but...but, there are few people in my life that I feel that I can be truly open with. I wear masks almost every day. Sometimes masks to hide the pain, sometimes masks to mask the embarrassment, masks to avoid the anger, masks to cover the truth and past....how many of you wear masks? I wonder at times who would still stand by me, if they knew the real me...the ugly parts of me that only God can love. It is so freeing to admit my faults, and one day, I hope to be open to sharing them with others, even those close to me. I hope my openness helps others not make the same mistakes I have.
P- Passports- Passports should be here in the next week!! There's a nice BIG hole in the bank as of today, so they must have processed our passports already!! Having the passports in hand will make this move to Germany all so real!!! *trying to shake off the jitters, but this cup of coffee at 5 p.m. isn't helping :\*
Q- Quiet Time- It is such a scary thing when your baby starts school. You feel like you have lost some of the control over your child. You put your faith and trust in the teachers and staff at their school to look after their safety and well being. I had tears with both of my babies starting school, but this was a little different, as Noah is my youngest.; but as saddened as I was when Noah started Pre-K this year, I have thoroughly been enjoying my quiet time. First of all, I have time for my quiet time!!! This is a new experience for me, as my life has revolved around one or both of my children for the last 7 and a half years!! Me time is a beautiful thing!! :) Quiet time is a luxury once you have children, and a luxury that I do not take for granted!!
R- Running- I have been training with the Couch to 5k app on my phone for several weeks...but I have been stuck on week 6 for about 3 weeks now...but I haven't given up, and I am determined to see this thing through!! I want to actually finish something I started, something I didn't think I would be able to accomplish in the first place. I may never be a long distance runner, but I am okay with that! Running for me is an outlet, a way to get my mind of things, and certainly a body shaper!! I love putting on music and getting lost in it while on the treadmill. I forget all about my worries and about how far I was actually trying to go, and before I know it, I've run a mile!! Here's to wearing out my running shoes and losing 10 pounds!! :)
S- Schenewark- This is the last name of my soul mate. Becky Schenewark is my soul sister. I truly think she walks around with half of my heart inside of her. I have been there for Becky through times that others would have run. I have witnessed and endured sheer heartbreak with her and witnessed pure joy!! She is one of those few people, outside of my family, that I can share my whole heart with and know that she loves me despite myself. Becky makes me want to be a better person. She gives me a push to be a better Mom, just by watching how she parents her kids. Have you ever met someone like that, someone that you just want to be around all the time...that's Beck to me. No matter where life takes us, we will always be joined at the heart. Every moment I have had the privilege of sharing with her is burnt into my memory. She is my Diana Barry and I am her Anne Shirley...kindred spirits!! :)
T- Thanksgiving Traditions- When I was little our Thanksgiving tradition was to travel from SC to Biloxi, MS to be with my Mom's parents for Thanksgiving. My Papu was a gruff, strict man, but I always knew he loved me; you could see it in his eyes. My Mamu worked from sun up to sun down to meet my Papu's needs. Thanksgivings as a kid were always so special. We would pile in the car and drive straight through all night and arrive in Mississippi in the wee hours of the morning. The smell of their house is still so fresh in my senses. My Mamu made a big breakfast every morning. Her homemade biscuits with a slice of fresh tomato is still my favorite breakfast!! I know it sounds weird, but it is SO good. After breakfast we all watched the Macy's Day Parade on NBC. I still remember the year Summerville High School was featured as one of the marching bands in the parade. While the adults worked hard to prepare the feast, all of us girl cousins played, since we only saw each other that one time a year. We were often getting in trouble, rummaging through our Papu's office. He always had the best ball point pens and we were always getting caught taking them! :) When it was time to eat, my cousin and I sat down on the organ bench that was pulled up to the table. Playing that organ brings back so many memories. After dinner, we would play board games, laughing with Aunt Mitzi and Uncle Eddie until we almost peed our pants and would watch The Ewok's Adventure. Thanksgivings in Mississippi were some of the best memories of my childhood. I miss my Papu and Mamu dearly.
V- Visitors- I REALLY hope that we have LOTS of visitors in Germany!! Any and all are welcome, even if you just use our home as a stopping point to see other places in Europe!! This is a once in a lifetime opportunity, not just for our family, but for our family and friends that have always wanted to travel. You have three years starting in December to make it happen! Don't let this opportunity pass you by. What are you waiting for??
W- Wish List- Um, this could get pretty long, but for starters I want the new iPhone 4s. I have had the iPhone 4 for over a year and LOVE it!! I think Siri is just what I need!! I also want a Mac...desktop and laptop!! I'd like new kitchen bakeware and cookware!!! I have found not only a love of baking but a love of cooking. I have been making new and difficult recipes for the family and find it so exciting to see a delicious meal come together so beautifully. I want a new wardrobe...need to lose that 10 pounds first though. I would LOVE to have everything in Pottery Barn that my heart desires and since this is a WISH list and not things I will necessarily ever obtain, I want my dream car...a LandRover!! :)
X- +- The only thing I can think of for X is that if you turn it sideways it is a cross. And I am so grateful for the cross. I know I don't always act in a way that honors what happened on that cross, but my heart's desire is to surrender to Him with absolute abandonment. I fall so many times, but because of the cross, I am washed clean every time I get back up. Thank you Jesus!!
Y- Y, you do want to know what I was thinking don't you?? Sorry to keep you waiting, I was just thinking that I am SO glad I almost through the alphabet. :)
Z- Zikowi- Zikowi is the plural term for Zikowitz. A Zikowitz is an Andrew, Diane, Julian or Haven. We have been close with the Zikowi clan for several years. We became friends at Bragg and all moved to Sill together in April. Diane and I endured a year deployment together, including visiting wounded soldiers at Walter Reed in our husband's absences. I was there for Diane during the loss of their unborn child and she was there for me during the deployment blues. It has been more like a family with the Powe' and Zikowi families. It will be very hard to leave here in a few weeks and say goodbye to our dear friends. We've watched each others kids grow up or be born, and it saddens me to not have that opportunity when we leave. I will miss our game nights!! Scattegories and Balderdash just won't be the same without you!! I hope your Army career continues so the hope of our paths crossing again will carry on. I love all of you, with the purest form of love, from the bottom of my heart!
Posted by The Power Family at Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Friday, October 14, 2011
Posted by The Power Family at Friday, October 14, 2011
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
I commented on a friend's status yesterday that you can't wait on life, because life doesn't wait on you. Those words certainly do ring true. It sweeps past me, like the dust that blows on the plains of Oklahoma. My babies are growing up. Nathan started Second grade this year. Noah started Pre-K. These precious little boys are my life. They make me the person I am. They are the reasons I get up every morning. They make me want to be better, not just for them, but for me.
Posted by The Power Family at Tuesday, September 13, 2011
Friday, August 12, 2011
I can hardly believe, as I write this blog, that this will be the last weekend of summer 2011! What a great summer this has been, one of the best summers we have had! We kicked off the summer the last week of May, when the last school bell rang here in Oklahoma. You are probably wondering what we did this summer that made it so great, but the real question is, what didn't we do?? :) We have been to Oklahoma City numerous times, traveled to Dallas for a great weekend getaway, and I am currently packing for our trip to Kansas, to spend our last weekend with family and friends before school starts next week!
Speaking of family and friends, we have had many out of town guests grace our humble abode with their presence this summer. My Mom joined us for several days over the Fourth of July holiday, and what a wonderful treat that was! I will never be too old to need my Momma! We have had record heat and no rain, so fireworks were banned here in Oklahoma, but we had our own "fireworks" here soon after. Mimi flew in for an extended visit, just a short week after my Mom left. There were several reasons for Mimi to come, other than the fact that she just can't seem to get enough of us, but the main reason being that I had oral surgery the 3rd week of July! I have needed my wisdom teeth out for a long time, and I put it off during Joe's year in Afghanistan; unfortunately, putting it off only made things worse in my mouth, so instead of just my four wisdom teeth, I had 6 teeth extracted, 2 of which were impacted. I was more scared of being put to sleep than having the surgery, but everything went smoothly...other than a few cases of dry socket! :) Like I mentioned, we had "fireworks", just not the kind you are thinking of!! During Mimi's visit, Joe's sister Elizabeth and her boyfriend Reggie made a detour on their move to Kansas, spending several days with us here in Oklahoma. We had the honor of witnessing a truly magical love story unfold in our living room!! Reggie popped the big question to Liz in front of a room filled with family and no one could deny the sparks that were going off! It was a beautiful moment to witness!! :)
With the record heat we have been having (110+ degrees), we have done our best to stay cool this summer. Lawton might be a small town in the Midwest, but we aren't without our fair share of entertainment!! We bought season passes for the Comanche Nation Waterpark here in Lawton! It is a small waterpark, but it is just the right size for us! I definitely haven't felt overwhelmed when I take the boys alone, and of course, it helps that we made some new friends that we would meet at the park! :) We've also been out to the lakes here in Oklahoma for days of swimming and fishing! This is a great town for outdoor family fun!! Needless to say, we loaded up on sunscreen day in and day out this summer!! This coastal Carolina girl needs to be near water!! *missing Charleston*
It has truly been an amazing summer!! Both boys turned a year older; Nathan turned 7 in June and Noah turned 4 in July. Joe and I celebrated 8 years of marriage on the 3rd of August. The boys have grown in age but I think their memory box has grown more! We have made some unforgettable memories this summer!! It's been one incredibly fun summer, but it wouldn't be complete without a trip to Kansas...WORLDS OF FUN...HERE WE COME!!!! :)
Posted by The Power Family at Friday, August 12, 2011
Thursday, August 4, 2011
SO, as you can see I've given the old blog on the block a new look...what do you think??? If you are wondering why I have updated the look and not updated the blog, then you would not be out of line...I am working on a new blog update!! Will post soon!! :)
Posted by The Power Family at Thursday, August 04, 2011