Sunday, December 20, 2009

I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas!

I made it safely to the other side of the world to Texas! This is me and my dad who decided to go for the Santa-look this winter!
My cousin Jessica and her husband drove through a snowstorm in Virginia to be with family for Christmas and were there to greet me at the airport.I got in just in time because 2 days later, we had one of the biggest snow storms this area has ever seen!
Here I am with my Dad, brothers, and Brittany on the 23rd (notice the tshirts and clear ground).
This is my adorable nephew, Cade hanging out with his daddy!
Just one day later, we woke up to this...
Central Texas rarely gets snow, and when they do, it is only an inch or so, melts immediately, or turns to slippery ice. They had a record amount of snowfall on Christmas Eve. All of the highways were shut down. There were people stranded in their cars for hours, some even overnight! It was a mess! Fortunately I was nice and warm in my mom's house. My brother Jacob and I got out in the snow and took a few pictures.
Check out the yardstick we stuck in the snow where it had accumulated in a corner.
John and I received a great Christmas present, some very exciting news last weekend. John was selected for promotion. For those of you who do not speak the military language, this is a big deal. He will move up in rank, get a nice pay raise, and will no longer be considered a junior officer. As in the civilian world, not everyone who is up for promotion gets it. There were 660 United States Marines who were selected and John was one of them. Soon he will pin on the rank of Major. If you are not familiar with the USMC officer rank structure, here it is. Bring on the oak leaf!I am so very, very proud of my husband. He is an amazing man, and a fantastic officer. It is apparent that he is great at what he does. We will keep you in the loop when the times comes that he will become Major John Franklin.

Merry Christmas everyone! I'll post more pictures of the rest of my trip (if the weather clears and we can actually get out of the house!)

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Tis the Season

This Christmas Holiday season has by far been the most stressful one I have ever had. First of all, forget shopping for gifts around here. Last year we did the whole get-everyone-Okinawan-gifts thing, so for anything else it is pretty hard. We don't have the greatest selection of things to buy! As most of you know, I am also in the process of getting my Master's degree and I stupidly took 3 online course this Fall. I cannot believe my brain has not exploded yet. Top all of that off with a zillion cookies to bake for every party or "forced volunteer" cookie donations, AND my husband being so far away. I am ready for a break! I am sorry, this blog was not meant to be a gripe-fest, I guess I needed to let off a little steam!
In all of the madness, I still put up a tree and decorated the house a little bit. The 75 degree weather does not make it feel Christmas-y, so I had to do something! I am planning on going home to Texas for a few weeks to see my family for Christmas. I think that will be a much needed break! Not to mention when I get back it will be January, and that is one more month closer to having John home! I am so ready for him to be back here with me!
I almost forgot to add one more thing to the madness; this weekend at the church we had a dinner theater performance. There was a little acting, lots of singing, and of course dinner for those who came to watch. It was a very nice evening. Here are the choir members. I must say we have a very talented group of fabulous singers!
These girls, Caralee and Katelyn are two of the sweetest people you will ever meet.
I am truly blessed to have made some good friends here. Friends can make or break any duty station. It is always so hard when you move to a new area and know no one. I finally feel used to this different world. I didn't say I liked it, but it is growing on me!
Merry Christmas to everyone! I will hopefully be posting pictures of my trip back home very soon!