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Wednesday, November 5, 2008

100 Days in the Army!!!

Yep. Here's the day it all started. The day I packed up all my possessions, and either left them in a friends garage in Ohio, or packed them in this homemade trailer, dropped my husband off at the Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS), and drove clear across the country to stay at my parents house. Seeing my husband drive off to Fort Knox, Kentucky was one of the hardest things I've done. But I did it.

My mom and I drove across the country in a 1990 Suburban, towing a home made trailer. 2500 miles. With 5 children. In 4 days. With no air conditioning. In the beginning of August. That was hard.

I watched my 2 year old wonder where his Daddy was. Throw fits because he wanted his old house back. Wonder where all of his toys were. Where his old backyard was. Where his old Nursery class (from church) was. Wonder why he was in a new house with new rules. That was hard.

Cram 5 kids into one little room, in a full bed, 2 cots, and a play pen. Then move 2 kids into tents, then eventually the garage. Field complaints of "you don't love me because you make me sleep in a tent", and "I hate sleeping in this room with all these boys". Trying to keep 5 people's clothes in one little closet, with no dressers. That was hard.

I went without talking to my husband for 9 weeks. 63 days. I saved an old voicemail from him, and listened to it whenever I got lonely. Not having a loving shoulder to cry on. Not having him here for me when things got tough, that was hard.

Making all the phone calls, dealing with all the bill, handling all the problems, being a single parent (essentially), that was hard.

I've found, though, over these hundred days, that I am tougher than I thought. I didn't die. I didn't have a nervous breakdown. I didn't quit. I'm still here. It's still hard, but I'm doing my best. We've actually had a TON of good times. I've learned a lot. I feel proud about what my little family is doing for our country. Most things that are important are hard. That's were the most opportunity for growth comes. "That which does not kill you makes you stronger". And I'm becoming ARMY STRONG.

Anyway, to honor my 100 days, I'm going to give you all a treat! Just be one of the first 100 people to leave a comment and you'll win a prize! And what might that prize be? Well, look below to find out!!!

comment #1-5 : 50% off coupon
comment #6-20: 40% off coupon
comment #21-50: 30% off coupon
comment #51-75: 20% off coupon
comment #76-100: 10% off coupon

Now, here are some guidelines: CT and Managers can't play. You girls get TONS of stuff for free already :) AND, only one prize per person. No multiple comments :)

So, when you leave a comment, make sure you leave a way for me to get a hold of you :)

OK, girls! Thanks for helping me celebrate what a GREAT accomplishment our family has done! We've been in the Army for 100 days!!!!!

90 comments:

Carolyn said...

Oh my gosh!!! I totally admire you. I've been stalking your blog for a bit now and had to come out of hiding to say WOW!!! You are a strong woman.

Joy said...

Oh my goodness! Your post made me tear up. You most definitely are a tough cookie and you can be proud of what your whole family is doing for our country. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for all you do -- and the fun you put into a difficult situation.

Love you shining attitude.

kathleen m co

Dawn said...

I give you so much credit ... you have a strength I cannot even begin to fathom. Your kids will grow and flourish under your guidance!! Keep on the path you are going. Take Care!!
Dawn
DawnzCreationz@gmail.com
www.dawnzcreationz.blogspot.com

Murdock Family said...

Oh wow!! I don't know if I could do what you do!!! Your amazing!! Keep it up!!

Murdock Family said...

Oh by the way my email is kambrea_marie@msn.com

Tammy said...

You are amazing to be able to handle all of that and keep the kids in toe. Congrats and tell you husband that his country thanks him.

tammymguard-misc@yahoo.com

Stephanie said...

First of all, you are a sweetheart for doing this!!! Thank you!!!

Second of all, you made me realize that what I'm going to have to deal with in the next couple weeks is nothing... and that if you can do it, so can I!!!

You are a brave girl, and I love reading your blog!!! Thanks for sharing with us!!

God bless you!!!

Heidi said...

What a strong woman you are. One day your kids will look back and be proud of you and their dad for all you've done for them!! Thank you! Heidi peargirl516 @ gmail . Com

Stephanie said...

Darn.. forgot my email above

srobertson@wightman.ca

sbaird said...

I don't know how you do it, but You are very strong to do what you have done. Congratulations!

Brenda said...

Wow, what an inspiration. Thank you for the sacrifices you and your family have made for our country and my family. Stay strong!

Ree-Ree said...

Hi! While I am still very new to your blog...I AM suscribed to your email alerts..telling me when you have posted something...and let me tell ya....I don't let it sit there in my email box long....I have already made it down your looooooong list of freebies snaggin merrily all the way...and I just read you last post and man! Can I say Hats off to you! For soooooo many things! 1. for having 5 kids & still having time to do your word art & keep up your blog whoa clap clap clappping my hands to you! And 2. having your hubby go into the army & for you having to learn how to be "army strong"...more clapping...and while i'm at it just let me stand on up! You deserve a standing ovation!!! Our country is proud to have men & women like you & your husband making sacrifices to make America what it is today.
100 days....you deserve a medal yourself!
Back to your word art...I've noticed that you say you will take special requests...and I've been trying to think of something I would like you to make...but it's been hard...you already got so much for freebies covering all bases really. So when I think of something...(it will probably have something to do with grandkids...I'm ga-ga over mine..they call me Ree-Ree :) ) oh and shouuuuuul you want to contact me...it's Sheriberi39a@aol.com
Again ...hats off to such a wonderfully talented army strong woman! Yaaaaaaaaay!!!!

Brenda said...

email for earlier post (I forgot): kbmurray5@charter.net

WyldCat said...

I was a military wife for 17 years, and I know that some of the challenges you will be facing seem at times insurmountable. But trust me, the rewards are equally great. You will make friends in places you never expected,and you can be proud of the service you and your family are giving to this great country of ours.

Thank you for all you do, and keep your sense of humor :)

Brooke - in Oregon said...

I can't even imagine all that you managed on your own. I remember when you left with all your stuff packed and 'shrink wrapped' I prayed for your safe travels, you have accomplished a LOT. Woman strong - Army strong and Faith Strong :) You rock!

Scrapaholic said...

Not entering for the contest ... but I just want to say that you are a wonderful woman for doing all of that. I can't imagine how hard that must have been.

I think you should incorporate all that heartfelt journalling into a scrapbooking page!!!!

Tabatha said...

Wow, I would deffinetly say that you are Army strong. I dont know how you find the stregnth to do it. I lean on my husband so much and I often think would I be able to do it with out him??? You are an amazingly stong woman and even though I dont know you, I cant wait until you can see your husband again. We always talk about the sacrifices our soldiers make for our country but I think we should honor the sacrifices their families make as well. God Bless you and your family! You inspire me to be a stronger woman and mom!

Tabatha
tborek1@yahoo.com

Ken and Andrea Walker said...

May Heavenly Father bless you & your family! Thank you, your family, & your husband for the service you are giving our country! I pray you stay positive, healthy, strong, and know you are loved and appreciated!

Andrea
andinken@hotmail.com

Malinda Sanders said...

I admire you and your strength! Love all your work! Thanks!

Angel Jet said...

Wow, you're amazing. I can't even imagine how this must be. But I do know I've great admiration for you to do everything alone with 5 kids around you. Big sacrifice and also it's wonderful of your husband to serve his country and leave his wife and kids behind.
Standing ovation for you! You really rock!

henriette.pieterse@planet.nl

Sharon-shutterbug said...

I've said before and I'll say again, I'm so proud of you and of all who serve us in the military - thank you!

sorzy (at) wideopenwest (dot) com

Anonymous said...

Bethany --

I can't tell you how much I admire your husband, you, and your kids. You've made incredible sacrifices for our country already, and I hope you know how much it is appreciated. You're an awesome, talented woman. Thanks for sharing your precious time and incredible talent with all of us.

Kim
williams3129 at comcast dot net

Mary said...

I hear ya sister, Marine wife here. You find strength you never knew you had.

threewild1 (at) gmail (dot) com

Lily6570 said...

You, and your family are awesome. I totally admire your husband, and you, for serving this country and protecting the freedoms that we are so privileged to have. God Bless You!

lily6570 said...

Whoops... forgot to add my email... bullseye@pld.com

kabouchon said...

Hello Bethany,
I've been reading your blog every day for a little more than these 100 days, so I knew all you've been through, but put all together it's just so huge.
I have 3 boys and my husband is often gone for his work for 5-10 days, but it's piece of cake compared to what you've been through... I'm amazed by how you deal with all of it.
Take care, hold on and good luck for the coming days/weeks/months.

kabouchon

PS: no coupon needed, thanks!

Jennifer said...

Wow! And I thought that my driving 13 hours when I moved was hard (I didn't have any kids then!)! Congratulations on making the 100 day mark! You have such a talent and are a great mom and wife! Best of luck!

Jennifer said...

Yeah, forgot my e-mail, too!
armstrong5722@comcast.net - sorry.

michelle said...

You have stayed strong through so much difficulty! Congrats on making it to day 100!!

I love your work. Thanks for all you share with me.

~Michelle
ciaomich (at) gmail (dot) com

Crystal said...

I'M NOT ENTERING THE CONTEST! LOL, you're right as a CT member, I get more than my fair share of freebies. But I wanted to say congrats on everything you've survived and most of all for maintaining your sanity :) Big HUGE mountain sized hugs, because you know you're a friend I cherish.

GrannyNKy said...

As a military Mom with two one son in the Army and one in the NAVY, it has been fun to follow your journey. Hats off to all those who keep the home fires burning while their better half serves for us one and all! Both of my sons have been deployed to the Middle East several times and DS#2 is currently in Afghanistan so I pray for all the men and women and children touched by the military during these trying times. Keep strong hon!

Sis said...

The families of servicemen are to be saluted! The stamina you've demonstrated is admirable, as well as the determination to lose weight and exercise, keep your children involved in activities and church, and stay involved with scrapbooking (a great way to document the experience). Thanks so much to you and your hubby!

lindat said...

You are an inspiration! Your family is making sacrifices for all of us. One thing that really amazes me is that you have been so faithful to yourself by following your diet through all of this. I would have gained mega pounds because I would have eaten my way through the stress. Thanks for sharing your journey.

Cherri said...

WOW, that was alot you went thru and still are. You have a great attitude as it would be easy to curl up and be depressed. I'm sure your prayers are heard and this too shall pass. Thanks for all the great wordart you share and for sharing your family with us. You are amazing and one day your kids will realize that!

Jaime said...

You were one of the first blogs I started following when I stumbled onto digi scrapping over a year ago. You are a true inspiration and THANK YOU to your family for the sacrifices you all are making.

meejay33@gmail.com

Take care!

Sandy said...

I am so proud of you and your family!
You were strong before (after all you have 5 kids to take care of) but traveling cross country and setting up a new life without your hubbie -- you are Army strong! I am in awe of you! Thanks sharing your life and your creativity with us.

Sandy
gokart@bellaouth.net

monica4179 said...

Aww Bethany I can Feel for you anf the kids uits so hard to do what you have done I am an a Army Brat as they call it and it was hard but u learn so much . I admire you so much for your strength...
Hugz
Monica

Jaema said...

You are quite heroic in your approach to a very difficult situation. I admire your sharing the reality of it all because "telling it like it is" makes life easier for others who know that they are not alone. Bless you and your wonderful family.

Anonymous said...

wow...100 days...amazing!

prinzess said...

that was me before -LOL!

Jamie said...

Bethany and Family!!! (please share this with your kids)
Thank you so much for your hard work and dedication and sacrifices to help keep America the land of the free. I'm a little extra emotional today because of how the presidential election came out last night but, I know that this is the chosen land and that our Heavenly Father loves His children. I am SO grateful to know that I can worship who and where I want. I am so grateful that I can teach my children the stories of the scriptures and the words of many songs. It is because of families like yours that we are FREE! It is because of families like yours that we can teach the words of God through living prophets in our own homes NO MATTER WHAT laws are passed or WHO becomes president. Stay strong! And Thank You, Thank You, Thank You for sacrificing the comforts of life, and the the presence of you husband and father to represent and carry out the importance of freedom for EVERY family across the United States. We appreciate you so much. We pray for you continually. We admire your courage and your willingness to serve. *Hugs from Idaho!
~The Bangerter Family

Anonymous said...

Wow, yeah for you. I've enjoyed reading your blog and been blessed by your wonderful wordart! I am in awe of your grace in dealing with all that has happened in the last 100+ days in your life!

Thank you and God bless you.


extramail at msn dot com

sheri said...

I would love to say THat I love your work, and that I can't even imagine what it's liek to have your family change so drastically when one of them joins the army. (((hugs))) and I know you, and your children, can and will get through it!

IreneO said...

Hey, Bethany, you are amazing! Stand tall, stand proud, and know that others are standing with you and grateful for your sacrifice. God bless you real good!
P.S. I am not looking for a prize - I just wanted to pop in with some encouragement and admiration for you.
Irene

http://ireneo-squarepeg.blogspot.com/

Lisa said...

Your story is so amazing, Bethany! I look forward to your posts every day. Reading your review of your emotions over the past 3 1/2 months brought tears to my eyes! Congratulations on overcoming and even flourishing in the face of adversity! Only, what, 35 days until the ball :)

Lisa (oshwick@idirect.com)

Shanners said...

Yes, you ARE STRONG! Congrats on making it this far. You're doing great. I'm so glad for you that you're able to be with your parents during all this. Thanks so much for all your generosity. I love your work.

Cheryl said...

I'm proud of you Bethany! You are a strong (and talented) woman and your children are sure to learn strength by watching you.
cheryl.benedict@yahoo.com

Craig & 3 Women said...

I am glad I am not you, but if I had to do what you have done, I'd hope I could do it just as well.
and to top that off, you make awesome word art!

Craig & 3 Women said...

oops I made comment #49
you can get a hold of me at newboldcs@aol.com

Melinda said...

Wow, you've been through a lot. Hugs! Thanks for sharing what it's been like!

Christina said...

Aww, I know it's hard to move and even worse when you are an army wife. ((HUGS))

Joy said...

Bethany... you are amazing... I hope you never lose your confidence... you have no idea what you are teaching your babies.

Amy Lightfoot said...

Congrats on making it 100 days and for finding out just what you can accomplish when faced with a new life challenge.
YOU GO GIRL!

Amy Lightfoot said...

oops my email address is
ealightfoot@rogers.com

Amberlee said...

Wow has it been 100 days already! Imagine what it was like for people with 13 children most of them in the same room sharing beds way back when. You are amazing and good for you!

Amberlee said...

you already have my email...right? ;)

Joy said...

Hi Bethany. I posted second, but didn't include my addy: joyscrappin(at)aol(dot)com

Thanks again!

Jennifer said...

Bethany

I just want to express my gratitude for what you and your family is doing for everyone. I admire you for the strength you have shown these past 100 days. God bless you and yours!

Jennifer
jeffinery(at)gmail(dot)com

becKie said...

i admire you. you are a very strong woman....ARMY STRONG!!! keep up your awesome job!!
beckie
wiltedrose314@gmail.com

Dawn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dawn said...

Thanks for all that you share with us, you are such a giving person. I can tell you are so proud of your hubby. I want to thank you both. I wish i lived closer to you,you look like anamazing person and it would be fun to get to know you better. you always have such a great attitude.
Dawn Z
dawnzorer@hotmail.com
Thanks for the yummy pop corn recipe.

Susie2shoes said...

I absolutely love your blog. You are a little fighter and I boggle at how much you cram into your life. How do you stay so determined, you're looking fabulous, a mere slip of your former self but double the spirit.

Thanks for sharing your lists and thoughts, they make me smile, they make me cry and they make me realise that I am .....



..... LAZY!

Big hugs
Susie
:D

Cheri141 said...

You are the dream mom I would like to be when I grow up!! I love your blog and your love for family and life!! Thank you so much for all that you do. You are a incredible woman!!

Michelle from MD, USA said...

OMG Bethany!! You are going through SO much, I don't envy your situation at all!! However, I do admire how you have taken everything that has been thrown at you and how you are making the most of the lemons you've been handed. YOU GO GIRL!! :o)

Things will get better soon. Stay strong for your family.

Hugs,
Michelle

Shannon said...

Good on ya for seeing the good things that have happened! I hope the rest of the time passes quickly for you.
email sandgphotography @ cox.net

CSA Brent said...

Sweetie Pie...seeing it all written down like that...who could have imagined when we set out on this path it would be like that. I thank our Heavenly Father each day for you and what you do. I don't know what I'd do without you! I'm proud to serve in the US Army and keep working hard to become and officer. But I do this sacrifice for you and the kids behalf - in the greatest Nation in the history of the world. We'll be together soon...love you so much!

Your loving and devoted husband

lauraucf@yahoo.com said...

What an inspiration to all of us who think we have it hard. Good luck on your journey. I love your products!!!

Quietangelsb said...

Congrats on reaching the 100 day mark. Keep it up! Your family's sacrifice is incredible.

Crissie said...

You rock! I really admire all that you and your family have endured so that your sweet husband can serve his country. Knowing that there are selfless men and women out there protecting our freedom makes me proud to be part of this great country.

Mari said...

Congrats on making it this far, Bethany! Being a military wife is a lot harder then actually being a soldier.

Bethany said...

Wow, girls! Thanks SO SO SO much for all of your support! I'm overwhelmed with all of your positive and supportive comments - you guys ROCK!!!

Just so you know, even if it says differently, at this point, the next person who leaves a comment will be #56. Some people double posted, so the count is a little off :)

ALSO, there have been several of you that haven't left a way for me to get ahold of you with your emails/web address. Or, so who have left a web address, but it's set to private. I can't get you your prize if I don't know how to contact you - LOL!

Scoobie81 (Lisa) said...

Bethany! All I can say is thank you...well, and "job well done"! When we think of the sacrifices our servicemen make to keep us safe, we very often don't take into account the sacrifices that their families make! You are an awesome woman, wife, mother, daughter! You're setting an example for ALL of us but most importantly for your children!

Tracy(me) said...

I'm not entering the contest, I just wanted to say thank you for all the sacrifices your family has made so that my family can live free. Thank You! God Bless!!

Denise said...

You ARE doing it! I'm glad you can recognize how strong you are in the face of adversity. Hang in there. I'm sure the best is yet to come!!!
Thanks to your hubby for his service to this great country of ours.
God Bless you all.
Denise
Summerlovinggal@gmail.com

Jody said...

Yes, you have accomplished an amazing feat. Congratulations

Ms Kittie said...

OMG! 100 Days! I knew you could do it girl. Like you said what don't kills us makes us stonger. You rock girl and boy a year does make a difference. Keep it up girl. May God Bless you and your family.
richardson.kittie@gmail.com

Melissa said...

Thank you for all your word art! You are a great inspiration and it's nice to see people who care about this country enough to change their lives. God bless you.

riley1989 said...

I just love your work. I am addicted!! Also, my son just joined the army so I also enjoy reading your family situations!

Jennifer said...

Keep it up, lady. Your family will reap the rewards of your hard work :)

jennspeciale@gmail.com

ginnieg said...

I don't know where you could find any more strength than in the beautiful comments left for you. I was going to leave you a comment even before I finished reading as it reminded me so much of my life growing up as 'the child' of the struggling parent. I think as adults we are stronger for it. I so admire you and your children and will say a prayer for your family and your husband that god may keep him safe and return home to his beautiful family. God bless you.
I don't know if we are suppose to leave our e-mail address on here but here goes, it is ginnieg@gmail.com

LeanneM said...

WAY TO GO! You definitely amaze me - I don't know if I could do it :) To quote Dr. Suess...you have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can street yourself any direction you choose :)

Granna Deanna said...

mI totally understand. My husband retired after 22 years in the Air Force. He still works for them as a civilian. My son is in the Marines & has already spent nearly a year in training plus 20 months in Iraq. He's only been in for nearly four years. His young family had never been away from home they married. Until May, they had never had a full month together since he enlisted. You will find a way to make it. You have your family, your faith, and your creative passion to help you through. Thank your husband for all he does for our country (and remind him once in a while of your contribution, too!).

Granna Deanna (again) said...

I forgot to leave my email address. It is deanna@allthewilsons.com. In the 17 years that my husband was active duty after we married, he missed 9 of my birthdays. He was gone 5 Easters, anniversaries, and Mother's Days in a row (which also meant 5 full soccer seasons). He missed every family holiday and birthday except our youngest's and Thanksgiving. He was gone 13 of the first 24 months we were at our last base and was sent on every deployment in those five years. Our son has spent the last three of his birtdays and the last two of his son's in Iraq. But somehow, it brings things into perspective. You become more excited with a 5 minute phone call than a $50 gift. He comes to cherish a hot shower and not having to put on all his clothes to trek to the bathroom across camp. You write (and often truly communicate) more. You appreciate those who came before that did not have modern technology like telephones and email and wonder how they did it. Thanks for sharing your journey and your talent with us.

Piko and Kanoe sitting in a tree. . . said...

OMGoodness I'm making the top hundred! I can some what understand your trials. . . I'm an AF wife and boy does it get tough but I get through it and the love I feel for my hubby grows as we chug along as a military family with four little ones.

Thank you for chugging along too. . . be all that you can be, right!

kaha_ohana@hotmail.com
kahalekomo.blogspot.com

RealRach said...

#86! but more importantly...((HUGS))) You deserved that one. Tuesday is Vets day and I will Pray for you, your family, and all the people who served this country of ours.

Sabrina said...

God Bless you! Though we didn't have to move, I know how hard it is to not have your DH around. I still have 301 days to go before I see mine again! Big hugs to you and your family!!!! You are amazing!

email: sdspicer@bellsouth.net

Kim's Scrappin' said...

Your post has brought tears to my eyes. You are a very strong woman. I'd like to send a big thank you to both you and your husband for the sacrifices that you have made for our country. - Kim
My blog is here
My email is - kimscrapping at gmail.com

Cheri141 said...

So sorry to have not left an email address for you. It is crshelton@gmail.com. Thank You Bethany for all that you do!!

Nicole said...

I wanted to leave you a comment not to get the discount, but to tell you what a strong wife and mommy you are. I truely admire your strength!