Its not your fault but I hate you

11.30.2012

As my sister calls it "one of nature's cruelest ironies" is pregnancy induced insomnia.  Night after night,  I wake up sometime between 2 and 3 am and stay awake for an ungodly amount of time just tossing and turning.  I almost always get caught spending this time thinking about things that I don't want to think about and actively avoid dealing with during the light of day

Well, last night was different.  Last night I had a vivid dream that I was catching up with an old friend who now lives in London and she told me something about my husband that really pissed me off.  I can't recount all of the sordid details because, honestly, some of you might be embarrassed reading it so let's just say, he didn't behave himself.  

So after I have this dream, I am then cursed with pregnancy insomnia so I then lay there for the next couple hours silently hating him.  As he lay there next to me, sleeping peacefully, and breathing deeply, I am shooting daggers out my eyeballs in his direction and breathing anger like fire out of my nose.  Like any mature mother of two, I am fantasizing about pushing him off the bed and ripping the pillow out from under his peaceful, sleeping face.

Now the sun has risen, my sweet Eva is up and at it, my latte is warming my pregnant belly and... I'M STILL PISSED.  It's so unfair, obviously, since he didn't do anything wrong and it was all just a figment of my imagination but I can't help it.  He was a jerk (in my dream) and I am not over it.  


We all do it... Umm, you do it too, right?!  Tell me, I'm not the only one who hates my husband because of his bad behavior in my dreams?  When was the last time you irrationally hated your husband in the early hours of the day for the crimes he committed during your slumber?


Find me on twitterfacebook, and instagram (jamiegrace01)!  

PS- 10% off ads today through this weekend.  Click here to advertise on Handling With Grace? Use the code "10OFF".  

Nailed it! + Wednesday walkabout

11.28.2012

Remember this picture?
I was going to show you my own "Nailed it!" fail picture but when I googled "Nailed it" to get that above picture, I came across all of these other nailed it pictures and had to share them.  I've been giggling for the past half hour (as my child watches her Learning ABC's video- parent of the year over here).  I hope it works to bring a smile to your face, as well.


And without further adieu, here is my very own, "Nailed it!" pinterest project photo.

And now, its time for the Wednesday Walkabout LINKUP!

What is a Walkabout?
It's a blog link-up party, every week here and with our co-hosts! Simply put your blog address or a specific post in the linky, visit some other people, and make some friends. Easy as that! I can't wait to talk to everyone!

Something new!  One "Mystery Host" and will have their link as #5 in the linky, as well as be featured in Rule #1.  Follow all 4 hosts on GFC or Bloglovin' and then keep an eye out next week to see if you're the lucky Mystery Host!

PS: You only have to link up with one of the co-hosts, it will link to all four sites!

The Rules
1. Place your link in the linky below and make some new friends. Simple as that.

MYSTERY HOST: Jen from The Adventures of our Army Life
Jane - Taingamala
Sarah - G.I. Joe's Wife

If you're a new follower of Handling With Grace, let me know so I can visit you back!

Find me on twitterfacebook, and instagram (jamiegrace01)!  





Philly recap + monster madness

11.27.2012

We are back from our Thanksgiving vacation in Philadelphia.  It was an enjoyable trip.
We watched the Thanksgiving parade
Visited the Mint, walked through Christmas Village, ate at Reading Terminal, went on the carousel at Franklin Square

visited the Love statue
And the boys ate the Philly cheese steaks at both Pat and Geno's (I didn't partake because of the whole vegetarian thing)...  The epic battle came to a unanimous decision...
...It is Geno's for the win.

I mentioned last week that Eva entered into a terrible two's stage.  Literally over night, she went from being generally happy, silly, and reasonable into a whining, crying, fussy monster.  She could barely go 15 minutes without throwing herself on the floor screaming "No!  No!  No!".  This drastic attitude change came out of nowhere.  Her crappy 'tude lasted into the beginning of our trip but thankfully, she is magically back to normal.

Just one thought on parenting through toddler monster madness phases- don't give in.  Even though it was physically, mentally, and emotionally draining, we followed through with her discipline (time outs and "breaks") 100% of the time.  She was removed from fun times when she couldn't pull her craptastic attitude together- almost every single time.

Am I lucky that she is generally happy and well- behaved?  Sure.  But, do I work my butt off to MAKE her generally happy and well-behaved?  Absolutely.

Parenting is hard.

Have you been to Philadelphia?  Did you eat at Pat or Geno's?  Which one did you like better?  
  
Find me on twitterfacebook, and instagram (jamiegrace01)!  


Military Monday: Caitlin- JB Lewis-McChord, WA

11.26.2012


The Military Monday duty station feature on this blog is designed for us military families to meet our fellow military spouses and also to learn about duty stations across the world.  We all get to (or have to depending on your outlook and particular set of circumstances), move every couple years to different duty stations that are scattered throughout the country and the world.  This feature will allow us the opportunity to explore these different areas of the world before we get there.  

If you are interested in being highlighted for this feature, please send me an email.  
***

Name and blog site: Caitlin The Gavina Family- http://gavinafamily.com

Branch of service:
Air Force

Where currently stationed: Randolph AFB, en route to Columbus AFB (but this is about Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA)

How long have you been there?: 2 1/2 years

Previous duty stations: Laughlin AFB, Altus AFB, Joint Base Lewis-McChord

Favorite restaurant in the area: Date Night: Ray's Boathouse.  It's a little pricey, but you can't beat the view or the food and is COMPLETELY worth the drive and price.  Casual: Trapper's Sushi.  Some of the freshest seafood around, made into gorgeous, delicious rolls.  If you're not a fan of sushi, head to Indochine.  It's easily the best Thai food in Tacoma (and we've tried a LOT of them).

3 favorite things to do in your current city:
1) Go to a Mariners game.  They're terrible, but the atmosphere is awesome.  Where else will you find pad Thai at a baseball game?!
2) Go hiking!  There are SO many incredible hikes around here.  Mt. Rainier, Deception Pass, and Mt. St. Helens are three of our favorites, but you can head out to the rain forest, the beach (rocky and cold, but beach), and other mountains as well.
3) Eat seafood.  From Pikes Place Market with all of its little seafood shops/stands to fancy restaurants around the area, there's no shortage of delicious seafood.  It's all SUPER fresh, so you can't really go wrong with any place!
Favorite duty station so far: JBLM by far!  It's absolutely gorgeous when it's not raining, and even when it is, it doesn't keep you from doing anything because it's just a heavy mist.  It rarely really rains!

Who is your hero? My mom is definitely the person I look up to the most.  She was everything a mom should be while we were growing up, and is one of my best friends now that I'm grown and expecting my own baby.  Mama cooked supper every night, took us to all of our practices and rehearsals, helped with homework, and was totally fine with our house being the hang out place anytime our friends wanted to come over.
What is the biggest draw back to where your current duty station?  The weather.  It's cloudy or rainy all the time, but like I said, it doesn't keep you from doing anything.  It just makes it gloomy a lot.  Invest in a vitamin D lamp, some good friends, and chocolate and you'll be set!
How strong/ or not is the sense of community in the area? There's definitely a strong sense of community.  We lived off base, and both on base and in our neighborhood, we had incredibly close friends.  The pilots are gone all the time, so it was important to us wives to make sure that we took care of one another and kept each other from losing our minds in the rain.  I still Skype weekly (and text daily) with several of them!

Are there any local festivals you have been to or are planning to attend? I did the Taste of Tacoma the first year we lived there.  It's a bunch of different restaurants and crafty-type businesses that get together and have stands for you to try a bunch of little pieces of Tacoma all at once.  It was super fun and gave us a few different places to try later on!
What is the overall feel of the community/area/base? The Seattle area has a lot of the living clean/organic mindset (down to not using plastic bags in stores in the city limits!) so you'll find a lot of organic fruit and veggies, clean eating restaurants, hemp stores, etc.  It makes it really easy and relatively cheap to buy healthy foods for your family with all the co-ops going on!

Have you joined any groups on base?  I was a Key Spouse, in our squadron spouse club, and was in the Officer Spouses Club as well.  There are tons of groups you can join, though!  I wanted to be in the ones that were most directly linked to our squadron since I was so busy with work and everything else going on.

Find me on twitterfacebook, and instagram (jamiegrace01)!  
  *****
If you are a military spouse or military member and want be featured for this post, please send me an email at HandlingWithGrace {at} gmail.com.  Duplicate stations are welcomed!

VS Giftcard GIVEAWAY + Guest post

11.23.2012

Hi ladies.  I am out of town for the Thanksgiving holiday so Amy is taking over for today.  Spend some time with her and be sure to check out her Victoria's Secret gift card giveaway below!
***
Hi - I'm Amy! I'm the author of "Trials & Triumphs of Loving my Sailor!"

I want to thank Jamie for opening up her blog to me, and allowing me to do a guest post! She is the sweetest and I can't wait to see her adorable little "boy"!!
So, the holidays are fastly approaching.. and it's going to be here & gone before we blink. Christmas is my 2nd favorite holiday - due to decorational reasons. Thanksgiving is my 3rd favorite. I love getting together with friends & family - celebrating over turkey & football. I think I look forward to the turkey coma nap, after all that cooking, the most.
This is our second Thanksgiving in our house & my third Thanksgiving with Ben. Our first Thanksgiving we were thankful enough to get to be in Texas! Only because he deployeed Dec 1st... which put a big damper on how fast our trip went. I'm loving this whole "shore duty" thing & loving knowing he will be all mine for 3 years!! Wahoo!
For Thanksgiving this year, I agreed to open our house and my kitchen up to Sailors who don't have family here. Otherwise they will be served a Thanksgiving meal on the ship.. and I think that is sad. They put their life in danger, travel on a ship for months and then have to celebrate the holidays there too? If they aren't deployed.. I have a hard time digesting that. So I'll throw on a couple of extra potatos, cook about 5 dozen deviled eggs and listen to the various football games in the background.

My wonderful Roomie has agreed to help me put the lights on the house and help put the tree up too! I love the bargain but I would have opened up my house anyway. What a better way to say "Thanks" then to be able to really thank our men and women who serve with a hot meal? I'm pretty sure this will become  tradition and I'm pretty sure we will extend this for Christmas and New Years too.
I hope that everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving and I hope that everyone stays healthy and safe.
I'd love to hear about your Thanksgiving plans, so please come visit me here and tell me what you and your family are doing for the holidays! Share pics or just simply leave your blog URL in my comment box.
I know that spending the holidays with our soldiers can be a rare treat. So to help you celebrate the time you have, I am giving away a $25 VS gift card! Get whatever you want on me!!

To all military spouses - I will be hosting Military Love Stories the whole month of Feburary on my blog! Send me your love story via e-mail & let me know the date you'd love to have. At the end of the month I'll ask all those who did a guest post to enter a giveaway. The giveaway will be A dozen roses too TWO lucky bloggers!! So please check out your calendar, send me your love stories & enter the Rose giveaway!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thanksgiving Day

11.22.2012

Source: tumblr.com via Cassie on Pinterest

Like I mentioned yesterday, we are in Philadelphia for the holiday.  We are enjoying each other's company and making memories as we traipse around this foreign city.

Like most of us, I have so much to be thankful for.  My family is healthy and strong.  My marriage is solid and easy.  My husband works hard at work and then comes home and goes to school.  He puts no expectations on me other than just being myself.

My daughter is smart, sweet, and full of joy.  She is comfortable enough with us to throw fits (thats what you're supposed to say when your kid acts like a monster, right?).  She is the light of my soul and my reason for living.  My life has meaning with her in it.

My life has been good.  I have so much to be thankful for.  Having dealt with the devastating loss of my Mom last year, I have a deep appreciation for just being.  We have everything we need.  I am simply thankful for us.

Enjoy your family today.  I definitely will.  All love.

Find me on twitterfacebook, and instagram (jamiegrace01)!  

I'm outta here + Wednesday Walkabout

11.21.2012

Guess what I am doing for Thanksgiving?  Going to the City of Brotherly Love!  Philadelphia!
When the guys get done with work today (we're going with our besties), we are throwing all 6 of us in the car, and taking the 2.5 hour roadtrip to Philadelphia for the holiday weekend.  Instead of worrying about cooking and cleaning, we are going to be doing one of my favorite things- exploring a new city.
Philly throws a huge Thanksgiving Day parade every year
So, if you happen to be watching the oldest Thanksgiving parade in the country on TV, keep your eyes peeled for me.  I will be the short, chubby, pregnant lady bundled up like a little eskimo.
***
And now, its time for the Wednesday Walkabout LINKUP!

What is a Walkabout?
It's a blog link-up party, every week here and with our co-hosts! Simply put your blog address or a specific post in the linky, visit some other people, and make some friends. Easy as that! I can't wait to talk to everyone!

Something new!  One "Mystery Host" and will have their link as #5 in the linky, as well as be featured in Rule #1.  Follow all 4 hosts on GFC or Bloglovin' and then keep an eye out next week to see if you're the lucky Mystery Host!

PS: You only have to link up with one of the co-hosts, it will link to all four sites!

The Rules
1. Place your link in the linky below and make some new friends. Simple as that.

MYSTERY HOST: Amanda from Somewhere Over the Camo
Jane - Taingamala
Sarah - G.I. Joe's Wife

If you're a new follower of Handling With Grace, let me know so I can visit you back!

Find me on twitterfacebook, and instagram (jamiegrace01)!  


A grief post: 16 months

11.20.2012

It's been a while since I wrote about my grief.  The truth is that things are "better" now than they have been since she died.  I don't cry every day- maybe only once a week.  A year ago, I didn't think that would ever be possible.  I am handling the pregnancy hormones OK as far as the grief is concerned.  I miss her.  I wish she could come back.  I wish I could turn back the hands of time and get just one more hug.  But, I don't feel desperate and I don't feel overwhelmed by sadness.

I dreamt of her last night.  She was rubbing my belly and giving me her look.  The side-ways glance that she so often gave me for being inappropriate.  I don't remember what I was telling her but it must have been crass and silly.  When I woke up, I bawled.  I wish she was around to talk to.  She was so practical and knowledgeable (she had a Masters degree in nursing, was a certified midwife, and lactation consultant).  She was an anti-alarmist.  I wish I could hear her thoughts on my pregnancy concerns.  It seems like every appointment I go to, I find out another alarming fact about this pregnancy and this baby.  I need her around to wade through the bullshit to tell me if my baby and I are going to be ok.

Do people ever grow out of needing a Mom?  I don't know.  My guess is no.  I can say with certainty that I am not done needing a Mom even though she's dead.

**I wrote this post yesterday and have cried half a dozen times today so maybe hormones + rough pregnancy + grief + holidays is actually going to be more challenging than I hoped**

Grief at 

**As per the usual, comments are turned off but you are welcome to email me directly**

Military Monday: Chantal- Ft Rucker, AL

11.19.2012


The Military Monday duty station feature on this blog is designed for us military families to meet our fellow military spouses and also to learn about duty stations across the world.  We all get to (or have to depending on your outlook and particular set of circumstances), move every couple years to different duty stations that are scattered throughout the country and the world.  This feature will allow us the opportunity to explore these different areas of the world before we get there.  

If you are interested in being highlighted for this feature, please send me an email.  
***
Name and blog site: Chantal www.scatteredseashells.com

Branch of service: Army

Where currently stationed: Fort Rucker, Alabama

How long have you been there?: We’ve been here since March 2012

Previous duty stations: Fort Benning, GA, and Schofield Barracks, HI
Favorite restaurant in the area: There’s a few. Thai Siam, Mellow Mushroom, TGI Friday’s, The Pit Stop BBQ, and they just opened a Buffalo Wild Wings.

3 favorite things to do in your current city: We’re in small town Alabama in the middle of the country. I love taking drives and seeing all the farms, hitting up some farmer’s markets, and enjoying nature. There are a few fun parks nearby. I also love driving about 30-40 minutes to get to the good shopping.

Favorite duty station so far: It’s a toss up between here and Hawaii. They both have their charms. I love this post way more than Schofield Barracks, but it’s hard to compete with Hawaii!
Who is your hero? I don’t have a hero, just a lot of men and women I admire.

What is the biggest draw back to where your current duty station? It’s in the middle of nowhere. You have to drive a good two hours to get to an airport that isn’t super expensive. There’s not TOO much to do here, so you have to look hard.

How strong/ or not is the sense of community in the area? There is a strong sense of community here. I think because this is a training post and most everyone has a spouse in flight school, you have that community already built in.
Are there any local festivals you have been to or are planning to attend? I’ve been to a bunch already! They are good about having festivals on post all the time. We recently went to the National Peanut Festival nearby.

What is the overall feel of the community/area/base? I’ve never been to a post that feels so tight-knit and friendly. It’s a small post and a small area, full of friendly people. It’s also very quiet, save for the helicopters flying over head, and I love that.

Have you joined any groups on base? I’ve joined a bunch of different mom’s groups and the spouses club. Great ways to meet people!
 *****

Have you entered the Project Baby Smiles giveaway yet?   Two winners!

If you are a military spouse or military member and want be featured for this post, please send me an email at HandlingWithGrace {at} gmail.com.  Duplicate stations are welcomed!
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