31 December 2006

Mail for my buddies

I want to thank all of you for all the packages that you sent me. I have a couple of buddies that haven't received any mail. If you'd like to send them a package I am sure they'd appriciate it. You can use the same address that I had just change the name.

PFC Trieu
SPC Kokernack


Return to Safety

This picture is of 2nd Squad. We had just got back inside the wire from a 5 mile foot patrol through the local villages. Walking in 8 - 10 inches of heavy mud. Front Row: (Left to Right) SGT Keener, SSG Strobeck, SGT Bailey
Back Row: (Left to Right) CPT Lamee, Me, SPC Fournier, SGT Carrillo, PFC Trieu, SPC LaBlanc

Misc Deployment Pictures II

These are just a couple more that wouldn't fit on the previous post. Everything looks nice and clean because we received 12" of snow on Christmas Eve.

Misc Deployment Pictures

I thought you might like to see some more pictures from Afghanistan.Above: This is a shot down mainstreet of Camp Phoenix
Above: This is near our wash rack for the Humvee's

Below: is where we sit to scan people on and off Camp Phoenix

Below: These are some pictures I snapped when I was traveling from Camp Phoenix, Kabul to Bagram Airbase.

28 December 2006

somewhere in germany

I spoke with Brad and he is somewhere in Germany. He has an appointment with another Doctor there (tomorrow?) He said the Doctor that he saw at Bagram was great. That doctor told him that adult-onset asthma can occur, but generally there is an under-lying cause. He said the asthma usually will not improve until the under-lying cause is treated, and that it could be something as simple as acid-reflux.
The doctor said that although it is 2006, people still die from asthma-related heart attacks. He then said,"Its one thing to tell a family that their loved one died from a roadside bomb or something, but I am not telling your kids that they don't have a dad because I wasn't proactive about treating his asthma." I told Brad that I love that doctor!
He is still unsure about his travel timeframe, but doesn't expect to be back before the end of next week. Also, no clues as to how this will be handled once he is stateside. We know its in His hands, and we continue to faithfully trust Him to lead us well.
Watch for updates!

brad is coming home!

I have few details...actually, all I know is that Brad is being medevaced back to Fort Sill because of his asthma. He sent an email yesterday that said, "stop the mail, no more deployment packages, I will call when I can find a phone."
I haven't heard from him yet, I don't know where he is or anything. He had an appointment at Bagram Air Base (in Afghanistan about an hour and a half from where he was). So, when I know I will let you know. His email seemed "upbeat" there were a number of explanation points, which is the only indication I had as to his mood!!! (See, you would assume that is upbeat, right?)
What does that mean for us? We have no clue what is next... lots of questions ahead. Of course, first and foremost we are hoping that Brad will be able to get this asthma under control. It only got worse over there. He was using his albuteral inhaler multiple times a day and is also taking a couple oral medicines and an oral steriod. We continue to be thankful that God is leading us, and we are not making our own plans. God is good all the time!
Honestly, from the heart of a wife that wants to see her husband excel at his dream, this is a little tough to swallow. Don't get me wrong, I am thrilled that I will see my husband soon, but my prayer was NEVER that he would be too sick to do his job. Even in this, I know God is in control, He knew before Brad enlisted that 10 months later he would start having trouble breathing. We have walked long enough with our Father to know that His plans are better than our own.
I will keep you up to date, as for now, don't mail Brad any packages!

24 December 2006

Merry Christmas

I just wanted to jot a quick note to tell everyone Merry Christmas. Brad and I appreciate the many prayers that are being lifted for our family during the holidays. Brad has sounded like he is doing well when I have spoken with him. (We usually get to talk between 8-12 minutes a day.) I know we are both experiencing the "peace that passes all understanding," as we walk along this journey. It is amazing how rich and full the Christmas story is when you are not distracted by hustle and bustle! God is continually reminding me of His hand in our lives, of His design for our lives, and ultimately that this life is brief (and therefore, so are the trials). I pray that both Brad and I would continue to be open to God's promptings and that we would walk in a manner worthy of the calling we have received.
Have a blessed Christmas, savor the moments with your loved ones and experience the fullness of the precious gift we have been given in Jesus Christ!

10 December 2006

baby its cold outside

Ok, so I know this is nothing compared to what is in store for us next week in Michigan, but it felt cold to us! We went on a Nativity Trail Hayride last night with some friends from church. Wilson really enjoyed it, they had about 5 stops, camels, angels and even a mean tax collector. It was a good way for us to hear and see the Christmas story. It was only in the mid-40's but there is always a stiff breeze here. We stayed pretty warm with the blankets and all. Wilson snuggled up with one of the 10-year-old girls with us! I only got one picture because it was a bit difficult to wrangle Walker, a blanket and a camera on a dark wagon ride!! Posted by Picasa

09 December 2006

more early Christmas pictures

Aunt Denine & Uncle Jamie sent some early Christmas presents for all of us. Thought you'd like to see more of the boys' opening gifts.

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06 December 2006

a couple more pictures

These pictures are where Brad is currently staying. The first picture is looking out of the door, and the second picture is inside the tent. He said they are packed in like sardines. They should be moving to a bricks and mortar building eventually.

pictures from bradley

Here are some pics that Brad emailed me, they are a bit out of order, but I will try to explain them. I am intentionally leaving out the name of where they were taken. This first picture is where Brad had been staying while waiting to get "in country."
This picture was taken on the plane ( I am not sure which of the three flights it was from!) This is where Brad landed "in country." This is the tent he was sleeping in, its the outside of the top picture.

This is a picture from the plane window.

he made it...

I talked with Brad this morning and he has arrived to his station in Afghanistan. Third time was a charm with the flight in. Brad said he understood why they wouldn't attempt to land with cloud cover because there are mountain peaks everywhere by the air base. From there, they had an hour and a half convoy. He said it was without incident and you could tell it was a third world country. (from what he could see after dark.)
They are "in-processing" for a couple of days. Which is basically making 100 copies of the 100's of papers that every soldier brought with him. Ok, I am exaggerating, but the paper trail in the Army is extensive!!
Brad said they are staying in tents right now, packed in like sardines and they don't know when they will move to the regular buildings. Also, they are suggesting Brad do some work other than "Medic", so pray that gets resolved quickly. I can't go into much detail on the blog because of something called Operational Security (OPSEC). Its always better to error on the side of caution.
Also, Brad had a pretty bad asthma attack last night, he said it was the first one that he has had without exercising first...It was cold on the convoy about 12 degrees, so maybe that had something to do with it. I was hoping he wouldn't have any symptoms over there and it would turn out to be an Oklahoma/Texas allergy-thing.
We appreciate your prayers, I am sure Brad will be posting something on the blog when he gets settled in (It is the Army, so it could still be awhile before that happens!)

05 December 2006

post-naptime photos

The boys were sleeping and I tried to sneak out of the room to get the camera. Of course they both woke up within seconds of me getting up. I decided to snap a few pictures anway!

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30 November 2006

ideas to send to brad

I know not everyone that reads our blog is going to send "stuff" to Brad, we don't expect you to, I just thought this would be easier because the list will always be in the same place. If you have questions, please let me know!!

toiletries including any of the following:
Gillette Fusion razor blades
Old Spice Body & Hair wash in one
Blistex medicated lip cream
Zim's Crack Cream
Chapstick with SPF (no girly scents/colors please!!!)
Deodorant...any brand just make sure it is anti-perspirant & deodorant combo
Shaving gel...any brand but for sensitive skin

Remember that you will most likely be mailing things via priority mail, if it might be heavy then you should try to get everything to fit into a flat rate box for $8.10. Then it doesn't matter what it weighs (and the toiletries add up!)

I am sure Brad would appreciate letters and cards more than anything...its always encouraging to hear that people are praying for him and for us. Even when we are well-connected technologically, nothing beats good old fashion pen and paper!

When he gets settled, he may have some other ideas, if you are interested let me know, I won't continually be posting lists of things to send to my husband!

By the way, the razor blades are kind of pricey, but its pretty important in his job to be very clean shaven on a daily basis. He tried the cheapies for awhile, but they didn't work out so great..ouch!

snow day in lawton

Here are a few pictures of the snow that closed Texoma down. (they call our region Texoma.) Schools are all closed for tomorrw too. I haven't heard about Fort Sill, but it was closed today. The bottom picture is what it looked like this morning, I thought that was going to be the extent of it. Fortunately for Wilson we got more snow because he has been wanting to play in it since 8 am.

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28 November 2006

thanks for the prayers

I appreciate all of the love and prayers for our family this past week. As well as all of the prayers to come. Thankfully I have two wonderful boys to fill my days and keep me from sitting around feeling sorry for myself. I will tell you this, God is good, all the time. That keeps my perspective in the right place.
I know many of you wonder how I am doing, and I am OK. Brad said the same thing today when I spoke to him. There are moments and there will be many to come, but at least the 'farewell' is over. Now we have the reunion to look forward to.

Please continue to pray for us. I have a short list of requests. There are many military families that do not 'survive' deployment. I am not too proud to assume that we can endure this on our own...I firmly believe that Satan targets individuals that could knock down a lot of other people when they fall. Both Brad and I believe that God led us to this place, therefore, he has plans for us.

1. Pray for safety. (kind of obvious)
2. Pray for strength: physical, emotional and spiritual.
3. Pray for faithfulness; to God, and to one another.
4. Pray for patience...mostly for me with the boys.
5. Pray for opportunites to build relationships with the people we are with.

I am sure at times there may be more specific things, but these five will remain for the duration.

Also, I have Brad's address, I am not going to post it on the blog, but if you would like it, just drop me an email.

27 November 2006

deployment day is here...

Here are some pictures of the family this morning. The first two pictures were taken outside while we were waiting for the bags to be loaded on the trucks. It was about 3:30 am. It was 68 degrees out when we drove on base, but the wind was a little chilly. The next picture is of the entire battalion that is going to Afghanistan (they won't all be in the same place though). And the last picture is after the deployment ceremony and moments before our last hugs & kisses. You may notice that Wilson was kind of mad at that point.

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23 November 2006

Santa comes to Lawton Early!

Here are the kids opening some presents, and Wilson enjoying a couple of his!

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A Bird fit for Food Network!

Amanda wanted me to document for everyone just how beautiful her turkey turned out for us.
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Wilson's Thanksgiving Turkey!

Wilson was so excited to receive so much mail! Thanks for helping with our new tradition.
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04 November 2006

Oh to be a kid!

Wilson is enjoying a lazy Saturday morning watching Veggie Tales.
Wilson liked the stickers that Great Grandma Rosencrantz sent him, but he made me (Brad) pull everyone off before he would go to bed.
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30 October 2006

Wilson's A Game!

he had a tough time this week, but he finally got going!

28 October 2006

Pumpkin Carving Party

Wilson is posing proudly by the pumpkin he helped Daddy carve at the party.
We had to make a new costume for Walker today because we knew the Chili Pepper one was too small and would be uncomfortable for long. So he went to the party as a 'biker dude.'
Straight pipes save lives!

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