The End of Block Leave

Hello readers.  I apologize for my absence, but Block Leave is officially over, and I’ve had a couple of days to settle back into routine.  So now, I am back to blog to you some more.

And, can I just say, that Block Leave was way too short.  They allowed my husband to take 15 days, and unfortunately the company my husband is in did not allow their soldiers to take any time beyond that, regardless if they have the leave time earned making them able to take above and beyond the allotted Block Leave schedule.  And yes, I think it’s rather silly that Block Leave taken is deducted from the soldier’s earned leave.  I think it should be like R&R is now – just given to you.  It’s the LAST approved leave time before deployment, so presumably, the last time my husband had the chance to go home to visit family and friends and places that he will not see for at least a year…you know, assuming “the bad thing” doesn’t happen, making it his last time EVER.  I just think that would have been nice, GIVE the soldiers 15 days, free, and allow them to take time on top of that, deducting their leave time earned.

But, off my soap box, and about our vacation.

“Leave” started for me 12 days before my husband was able to come home.  He had to go to another Post for some pre-deployment training, and then was able to come home.  My time at home was nice, albeit stressful at times (see my previous blog about spending a night with the Capt’n).  I was able to see my friends, celebrate my birthday (the big 2-5 this year), and go “upta camp” for a day with my Dad.  Both my Mumma and my Mumma-in-law took me shopping, on separate occasions, for my Birthday present, because I was in desperate need for some new clothes, new styles.  It turned out to be two eventful trips, as I was able to update my wardrobe with a new look, and some nicer clothes.  I felt like I did when I was 8 and had done my back-to-school shopping – I wanted to wear every outfit in the same day, I was so excited!  haha.  I’ll add, that finding clothes for different body types and figures can be a challenge – DON’T GIVE UP LADIES!  There ARE clothes out there that will fit you!  I’m short, petite, relatively thin, and “bosom-gifted”.  Hard to dress a short body, generally size 2-4 body, but with a larger chest.  If I managed to do it, you can to.

OK, back from that tangent.  Can you tell I’ve been away from blogging for a month?

My husband finally came home, spent a couple of days with this parents and in his home town, then came to meet me at my parent’s house.  We left then to celebrate our One Year Anniversary, and have a second honeymoon, at the place where our relationship literally began, and where we were married – Bar Harbor, ME.  We got the same Suite Package that included a whale watch, dinner for two at a local restaurant, and in the room: champagne the first day and local chocolates, a bouquet of flowers, and a jacuzzi-tub in the room.  Normally, we’d just get a standard hotel room more within our budget, but since this was a special trip – not just to celebrate our marriage – I figured it would be nice to splurge again, and indulge ourselves.

The weather was perfect for our entire trip.  We had delicious food EVERYWHERE we ate.  Our whale watch was a little discouraging, because it felt like we were on a hunt more than a watch.  We were chasing one right whale, and of all the whale watches I have ever been on, was the first one that I did not see a humpback whale.  Usually, humpbacks are a guarantee.  The year before, we saw 7-9 humpbacks, because we happened upon a pod.  We enjoyed a long leisurely walk on the Carriage Trails, and played a couple of games of mini golf at Pirates Cove.  But most importantly, we enjoyed each others’ company and were able to relax and reconnect.

I highly, highly suggest for every couple married to a service member, or going through a difficult time for whatever reason, to take a time out for a few days together.  Go to someplace that is special to you both, and just relax, push everything else outside of your minds, and enjoy each other again.  And especially before deployment, find something special for the two of you to do together.  You never know for sure if your spouse will come back from deployment, so make sure you make the most of the time you have, and don’t end up regretting not spending time together.  Try not to make money an issue – stay within your means, but if you want to splurge a little here or there on something that will mean something to you both, go ahead and do it.

After our few days of celebrating our marriage, we spent another day with both of our parents together, and had a wonderful time.  We truly are lucky to have come from wonderful families, and have families that enjoy each others company.  And anyone else who has this is truly lucky, also.

We spent the remainder of our time at home doing things my husband wanted to do, seeing people he wanted to see before he had to leave.  Unfortunately, we were not able to see everyone we wanted to.  I understand it’s hard, us being away for so long, and coming back with relatively short notice, for only a short period, to be able to have it work out with everyone’s schedules and our own.  Please know that we wanted to see a lot of people, and if we didn’t see you, it’s not because we didn’t want to.  We will see you again on R&R or after deployment, whichever works out.

Our vacation ended with a wedding of one of my husband’s cousins.  Rather fitting, as our vacation pretty much started with us celebrating our marriage, and ended with the celebration of another marriage.

The wedding was absolutely beautiful, and took place in Sturbridge.  To the happy couple, we wish  you and your family the best in everything life has to offer you, and through everything life will throw at you.  We love you!

And then we returned to life at Post.  On the one hand, I can say it’s nice to be back, but only because this is where our stuff is, where our bed is, and we don’t have to live out of a suitcase anymore.  Because we had such a short time at home, it did feel like a lot of our time was rushed, even though we tried to just take it day by day, and do everything we wanted without being on much of a schedule.  My husband hates it when I regiment things.  And being that it takes a full work-day to drive from one place to the other, two full days of our 15 days were full of driving.  But, we are at our temporary home, unwinding, and getting back into the schedule of Army life.  But only for a little while, because we’ll be packing up for deployment soon enough.

I wonder when I can finally sit down, and really exhale.

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