Sunday, August 24, 2008

Cross Country Adventure Recap Part 3: Private Commissioning Ceremony

At 6:45 in the morning on Friday we were all present and accounted for in the Commander's Office for a private commissioning.

This meant that Austin and three other candidates were being sworn in in a special ceremony prior to graduation by a member of their family or someone special to them who was in the military as well. They were nice enough to have donuts and coffee for the families, with all the little creamers in the shape of an anchor...which I don't think anyone got a picture of, but was cute nonetheless.

It was a pretty small space and all of the families were trying to take pictures but there were some cute ones taken anyways, and it was the first time we all saw Austin in his dress whites!
Then it was into the CDR's office for some speeches by Darryl and tears shed by all.

Then he swore Austin in, gave him one of his Second Lieutenant bars, which Austin can wear as an Ensign...they are the same ones his dad was commissioned in...(awwwww)...we took enough pictures to annoy the CDR and have him ask us politely to leave and were on our way for the next part of the day: Official Graduation!

Cross Country Adventure Recap Part 2: Hi Moms

Thursday night we headed to the Officer's Club on base and attended a dinner known as "Hi Moms"

Why? well, because it is generally the first chance to say hi to the moms in town...They are so creative in the military aren't they?

Leslie, Haley and Justin were not flying in until later, so they couldn't attend, but the rest of us had quite a time. I forgot my camera for the evening, so all picture credits go to Lori and Emily!

So Excited!
Proud, proud, proud
 Serious Talks

 So happy!
Emily and I
The Captain's, whose name I cannot remember, speaking about how great the candidates are.
Class Officers and DI...he made such a nice speech, and then all of a sudden yelled something and this is what happened...
 Push ups. For real. My reaction?
"What the h is going on right now?" 
It was in this moment that I realized why OCS had never occurred to me as a career move. We left the evening pretty soon there after to look at boats in the Marina and turn into bed early to get a jump start the next morning for graduation...we had to be there at 6:45...Get Excited!

More Pictures from Pre-Graduation!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Cross Country Adventure Recap Part I: Pre Graduation

So, as recruitment has taken over my life, we are going to do this recap in installments. (Right now I have a teensy break before heading back to the Greek Life Office at 11 pm. yes. that's right.)

First Up: Rhode Island, Pre-Graduation!!!

So, Wednesday morning I woke up bright and early to get all of my insane amounts of luggage into my dad's car, drive the two hours to the airport and fly from Minneapolis to Charlotte to Rhode Island.

I got off ok, and could not help but grin from ear to ear on every leg of my flights...which mean people sitting next to me thought it was ok to actually speak to me...but I was so excited I didn't even care!

When I finally landed in Providence I was greeted at the airport by Austin's dad, his girlfriend Lori, her daughter Emily and his Mom-Mom! They were all waving and grinning at the bottom of the escalator so the excitement continued.

Then they gave me the most exciting news of all - Austin was able to see us that night!! ack!

After a lengthy drive to the gorgeous base we pulled up to a parking lot where I could barely see in the distance a young officer-to-be standing in his khakis. Then I realized it was MY young officer-to-be!!! AHHHH!

At this point all I could think was:

After a short struggle with the seat in front and trying to wedge myself very un-gracefully out of the door there we were: together again.

for about ten minutes. and he was in uniform. which meant little to no PDA.


at that point though it was just so amazing to see him in person, and so weird to think I will see him in that uniform almost every day for like the next 20 years or so. Someone has pictures. I don't. I was busy staring :)

Pretty soon he had to leave to get dinner and that was Wednesday...sad faces...but there was more to come on Thursday.

I checked into the Navy Lodge and had a lovely view of some retired carriers from my window:

 Coincidentally- my dad was deployed on both of these carriers! weird, huh?
Thursday morning dawned and it was all I could do to bound from my bed and room and march over to Austin's training grounds.
At noon they had a change of command ceremony, after which Austin was free to show us around the base. His dad was so excited he looked like a little kid :)
The base was beautiful - a perfect setting for such a hellish experience, don't you think?

 This is the bridge that Austin came across in April and had not crossed back over until after graduation...The DI's really liked to work them out in the sand pits in direct view of the "Bridge to Freedom"
 These are some of the other classes being "beat" in direct view - and smell - of the lovely waterside picnic that the graduates and families were attending.
Crazy, eh?
 The label outside Austin's room
 This is the bed where Austin slept on top of covers, upside down. Apparently that is normal there.
Ready for some family pics?
Lori, Austin, Daryl 
Austin and Bertie *Mom Mom*
Soon after we had to get ready for the fancy schmancy "Hi Moms" dinner at the O Club!
More to come...

Monday, August 11, 2008

Back in the Classic City...

and here we go again! I apologize for being few and far between with the posts (I mean post. Singular.) for the last couple of weeks, but we have been bouncing around the country, with limited access to internet.

Our travels looked vaguely like this:

(WI, RI [two different hotels], VA, a night in NC, and then finally back to good ol' GA)

Today is our first day back at work and first day in the new hum drum life we plan on having...which so far isn't working that way at all!

I reported to work today at the Greek Life Office...Sorority Fall Formal Recruitment starts when? tomorrow. So, this week for me will equal putting out fires at random times and places as 1,318 Potential New Members navigate the recruitment sea over the next week. But- you know I love it :)

Austin on the other hand, was supposed to begin his new transient work environment today, but it seems as if the Navy is on vacay, so he is hanging at home with the puppy.

More to come on details and recollections of all of our stops on the map above, Graduation, reuniting with the pup, and what our crazy lives will look like for the next couple of months -- perhaps even a guest blog from Ensign Gage himself! We fully intend on keeping this site going to keep everyone well aware of what is going on in our lives, so bear with us as we click the pieces of life back into place!

Monday, August 4, 2008


So, there are TONS of pictures and details to come about graduation...but at the moment I am enjoying time with my love and visiting friends cross here is a preview:

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