Posts Tagged ‘anniversary’

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Musings of my Blog-iversary

December 9, 2014

So 11 days ago WordPress kindly reminded me that I have been masquerading as Snipe Wife for 4 years now. Wow. Hard to believe. I also now have 200+ followers. If you’ve read my blog long enough you know how I feel about at least 50 of those being robots or people who just want to hawk their own websites and having nothing to do with merchant marine affairs or anything else I post about. Really, WordPress, why can’t I click “delete” on some of these pointless follows? But 200 followers in 4 years is not bad for being an anonymous blog.

I had started the blog with much trepidation but with amazing support from a fellow blogger. I spent the month posting on FaceBook my 30 days of thanks and posted them on Dec. 1st. I honestly don’t know which FB friend started that but for 4 years now I have continued the tradition.

Four years ago I suffered probably the second most traumatizing event in my life. If you read the last few entries on that list, I described a desperation and despondency; anxiety that would spiral out of control; a pain that would stick with me for years. The purpose of the list is to count your blessings. I don’t post on FB “If you love Jesus, you’ll repost this” pithy sayings and “challenges” … instead I was trying to list what I was more than grateful for, knowing the source of all the blessings in my life. My intent was to never stand before anyone and say “Thank God I’m not like that tax collector; look at what I do” (Luke 18:9-14). My intent was not to make anyone else feel bad they didn’t have fabulous baby sitters to make their lives easier or to criticize anyone else’s husbands who can’t stand in the Chief’s amazing shadow. But my attempt to just show, rather than “repost”, my gratitude was twisted in the brutal attack.

The following years I debated even doing the list but I felt it was important to write these blessings down, to show my children later so that they too could appreciate all that we have been blessed with to cultivate giving hearts in them. I would struggle and lose steam as the month wore on and I got closer to the anniversary of that trauma. I questioned whether posting such a list was vain and pithy and whether it made others uncomfortable. And yet as I read the daily posts of other friends who joined in, I never saw the same flaws in their lists. I was encouraged and uplifted by their thoughtful lists. I was much harder on myself.

Interesting that I saw a lot of 3-day and 7-day thanks challenges starting in the fall this year. I did not participate because I was going to make my 30 Days of Thanks again this year. And it was going to be different. I was going to truly focus of finding something that day that I was thankful for. I would make it less of a laundry list. Yes, I always started off with giving credit where credit was due–that wouldn’t change. But if I was thankful for a rainy day then I would thank God for that rain. Yes, I’m still thankful for my fabulous friends and babysitters and I can’t live without them but I was focusing on the little things, the things we really take for granted.

I didn’t necessarily post every day; instead toward the end of the month I posted every couple of days. Not because I lost steam or had doubts… I just wanted to think about the thing I was most thankful for.

I didn’t lose steam because I didn’t hear those brutal words anymore. There was a fundamental shift in letting it go. Letting go and trusting in healing God provided me. It wasn’t over night but it was so much better than the two years of pain that left me with generalized anxiety and the onset of psoriatic arthritis. The healing continued to evolve and my trust in God has grown.

I’ve even told total strangers on the merchant mariner wives FB that I write this blog. I haven’t given up on this blog, I just write when the mood strikes me. I’m less self-conscious about it … even coming to terms with creating boundaries with the Chief about his input. Four years… lots to be grateful for, lots of lessons learned. Lots of healing.

To my 200+ followers, real or not, thank you for sticking with me on this journey.

 

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Writing Workshop: Travel

September 18, 2014

So this week’s prompt #4 is a perfect way for me to share pictures of our summer vacation. I could blog about the pitfalls of traveling with 13 family members, especially when no one likes to take control and one member took advantage of that… but it really was a fabulous trip with a lifetime of memories made.

First of all, if your spouse is a Merchant Mariner, I suggest finding out where all their classmates sail and if any happen to be on cruise ships.

That was just a secondary and happy occurrence but the Chief knew the Chief and it was only poor scheduling that his sea partner was not Captain at the time… I can only imagine the goodies we would have gotten if he had been on board. No, we took the cruise for the Chief’s parents’ 50th wedding anniversary. They wanted to show the grandchildren where their parents had grown up. Otherwise, no, the Chief would not spend his own money to go sail on a boat for his vacation. And his parents graciously paid for the cruise and our island accommodations.

Needless to say, we were spoiled by the Chief’s well-placed connections. The Chief said to me at the end of the voyage, “I hope you don’t expect every cruise to be like this.” To which I replied, “Are you kidding? I want to know where all your classmates sail.”

Here are just a few pics and captions. Enjoy and don’t be too jealous.

The best turkey burger and fries. Yum!

The best turkey burger and fries. Yum!

Another dining option... this time we took the girls. At first we couldn't find the specific restaurant because you had to go through the wine bar to get to it... hello, we don't drink. But I'm glad we found it for lunch on our last day.

Another dining option… this time we took the girls. At first we couldn’t find the specific restaurant because you had to go through the wine bar to get to it… hello, we don’t drink. But I’m glad we found it for lunch on our last day.

It wasn't our anniversary but our steward must have thought something was up with all the gifts we got everyday. These love birds were cute.

It wasn’t our anniversary but our steward must have thought something was up with all the gifts we got everyday. These love birds were cute.

yup, the creepiest.

Yup, the creepiest.

More yummy chocolates.

More yummy chocolates.

The Chief had to get this bottle of wine because it was described as "tasting like cherry coke." His parents enjoyed a glass each too.

The Chief had to get this bottle of wine because it was described as “tasting like cherry coke.” His parents enjoyed a glass each too.

We passed this plate around to his parents and his sister & husband.

We passed this plate around to his parents and his sister & husband.

The Chief has this submarine cruise on his must-do list. I was not feeling well but I enjoyed the smooth ride and the cool temps. Now that I think about it, I'm lucky I didn't make a whole lot of other people sick.

The Chief had this submarine cruise on his must-do list. I was not feeling well but I enjoyed the smooth ride and the cool temps. Now that I think about it, I’m lucky I didn’t make a whole lot of other people sick.

We decided to take the Chief's parents to dinner with us as a way to thank them for the cruise. The food was delicious.

We decided to take the Chief’s parents to dinner with us as a way to thank them for the cruise. The food was delicious.

The one surprise plate we did not share with the others. T2 ate a strawberry almost as big as her palm before I came back to the room. YUM!

The one surprise plate we did not share with the others. T2 ate a strawberry almost as big as her palm before I came back to the room. YUM!

Got to love the creepy red eyes on our towel animals. But Louis was awesome!

Got to love the creepy red eyes on our towel animals. But Louis was awesome!

Exactly.

Exactly.

The Chief made contact to let the Chief know we were sailing with him and he asked the Chief what his "poison" was... not a drinker, the Chief asked for diet soda. We were sent two cases of soda and a magnum of champagne.

The Chief made contact to let the Chief know we were sailing with him and he asked the Chief what his “poison” was… not a drinker, the Chief asked for diet soda. We were sent two cases of soda and a magnum of champagne.

The first of many surprises left in our cabin. We also got an invitation to attend a private reception with the Captain and the top officers.

The first of many surprises left in our cabin. We also got an invitation to attend a private reception with the Captain and the top officers.

One of the sights my FIL wanted to see was the Arizona Memorial. Very somber and moving. Copyright The Chief 2014

One of the sights my FIL wanted to see was the Arizona Memorial. Very somber and moving. Copyright The Chief 2014

KuKui nut leis. The hotel employee responsible for helping guests with taxis and shuttles talked with me and the girls about the leis I had made T1 and how I didn't have kukui nuts to add... he said "Don't leave if your shuttle gets here" and went into the building to bring back 4 leis for our family. Now that is customer service.

Kukui nut leis. The hotel employee responsible for helping guests with taxis and shuttles talked with me and the girls about the leis I had made T1 and how I didn’t have kukui nuts to add… he said “Don’t leave if your shuttle gets here” and went into the building to bring back 4 leis for our family. Now that is customer service.

Rainbows in Hawai'i--Who would have thought? Copyright SnipeWife 2014

Rainbows in Hawai’i–Who would have thought? Copyright SnipeWife 2014

So sorry all the photos are out of order. We also got a tour of the engine room and a map signed by the Chief and the Captain. The Chief also got crew coveralls from the Chief. Too funny.

Well, I hope I don’t get anyone in trouble for posting about all of this.

If you want to know more about Mama Kat’s Writing Workshops, click on the trophy in my side bar. Here are this week’s prompts:

1. Show us where you go for quiet.
2. Throwback time! Share an old class photo of yourself.
3. List the top 6 books on your list to read next.
4. Write a blog post inspired by the word: travel.
5. Something funny your child said.

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Sometimes It Is Not Fun Being an Adult

January 12, 2014

When the Chief asked me what I wanted for Christmas I said, “I was thinking about that. Could we combine Christmas with our anniversary, not get each other anything, and go to this bed-and-breakfast that I’ve been dying to go to and have been watching its blog like a hawk?”

The Chief was game and I was given the go ahead to look for a sitter for the girls.

Then the Chief gave me for Christmas a pair of earrings we had scoped out at an antique shop downtown. Now I did get him to narrow down how much he spent and I don’t think that he paid too much for them. I would like them appraised to see if the stones are real but the earrings themselves are 14k gold.

So our anniversary came and went and so did some weird weather. It is fortuitous that we did not go on our actual anniversary because of the weather. (The next day was a snow day and that could have been disastrous.)

We were planning on going tomorrow. But it has been nagging at me. The cost. The cost of one night. I know, I know it is the experience of staying in a historic building, having cocktail hour, a luxury bath, gas fire-place, amazing food in the morning, time alone, just the two of us… I’m worth it. He’s worth it (though I’m not so sure he’d enjoy it as much as I would). 18 years is a pretty good accomplishment.

But we have a family cruise to Hawaii this summer. I’m going to want to do as many excursions as possible. The amount we would have spent in the accommodation, taxes and for a sitter for the night could pay for 1 or 2 excursions for a family of 4 depending on what we choose to do.

I was talking to the father of the sitter, letting him know we’d tell her tonight if we still needed her. “Yeah, we usually end up taking the kids with us because there will be a time when it’s just us.” I said, “We’re going on this trip but it’s not like we’ll have privacy.” He laughed, “Sure you will. Just send them to the beach.” T1, who will be sharing a cabin with other cousins, piped in, “Or just send T2 to our cabin!”

It is not just that. In recent days I looked around at our more than adequate home and started listing that I’d still really like–our bathroom redone and we truly need to admit we need a king size bed if we’re ever going to get decent sleep any time soon. This could mean a whole new bedroom set (ours is 18 years old now). And he has a list of his own–new kitchen floor, new front door, etc. None of this will be inexpensive. We just got a new hot water heater, new washer & dryer, and replaced the french doors. Not cheap at all. Those three were definite needs and not the wants of a new bathroom sink.

And the kicker? The Chief and I just had physicals. Our GP is an old friend–I’m talking I’ve known him since 9th grade. He went in to see the Chief and said, “Not that your wife told me to say anything to you, but you don’t seem too particularly thrilled with your employment situation. What’s it going to take for you to stop sailing?”

“For my wife and children to agree to live on half my salary.”

Don’t get me wrong, the Chief is pretty selfless and doesn’t make us feel like a burden. If you’ve read my blog for any length of time, you know that it is me that refers to myself as spoiled and blessed that I don’t have to work. I’ve struggled with that and I’ve panicked about that–I can be immobilized by the question of “what do you want to be when you grow up?” But the Chief has never made me feel like he resents us. He has expressed displeasure when he’s felt unappreciated but he’s right. The girls especially have had moments of thoughtless unappreciation.

I just spent the month of November being thankful and December is about serving, giving, and counting those blessings all over again. If the Chief is one of my top blessings, is it right for me to ask him to take me to what boils down to as an extravagance in light of all the home improvements I just complained about and the already planned expensive Hawaiian trip .. for “our anniversary”? Is it appreciative to ask him to spend money of something he might not enjoy as much as me?

Okay, just to be balanced, if the Chief asked me to spend our anniversary at a woodworking show, you better believed I’d roll my eyes, groan, make sure there was a nice hotel and restaurant involved before I’d agree to go with him. (And yes, I’ve spent my birthday at a woodworking show with him but it was followed by a Trace Atkins & Bill Engvall concert–seemed like a reasonable exchange!) The Chief agreed to the B-n-B idea without asking for something for him.

I wanted the Chief to step in and say, “Let’s save the money for Hawaii.” But he wouldn’t. He felt like he was in between a rock and a hard place. He listened to what I had to say. If he gave his thumbs up, I’d enjoy it–I’d have a blast. But I’d probably feel the guilt later when I had another sleepless night or complained again about or mismatched medicine cabinets. Or had even more guilt as we signed up for our excursions. Would it be worth it.

The Chief came up with the only grown-up solution. “If you’re going to feel guilty, let’s not go and go shopping for a king size bed this week.”

He’s a good guy, that Chief of mine.

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Three Years? Already?

November 27, 2013
Happy Anniversary!

You registered on WordPress.com 3 years ago!

Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging!

 

So a little bit of the stats:

I’ve made 413 posts in three years. I’ve posted under 22 categories.

I have 138 followers but sadly I will have to say about 75 of those are scammers and spammers who just want to connect with my blog “to help me learn better blogging techniques.” And I’m sure I will get at least one new to follow my blog based on this post.

As I’ve said, my most popular post is Romantic Christmas Songs, posted in 2011.

My most popular maritime related post is: Writing Workshop: Why Snipe Wife?

This is followed by Captain Phillips: Will you go see it? It has 76 views but sadly only Enchanted Seashells bothered to tell me if they’d see it. (She is also my #1 commenter.)

My Personal: Parables of the Ten Minas is my most viewed personal opinion piece.

My picture of the N.S. Savannah is my most view image.

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