Thursday, April 23, 2009

That guy's birthday

Since Austin recently found out about where we are heading, AND turned the big 2-5, AND we are leaving Athens shortly, our weekends (and weekdays for that matter) have become absolutely packed with fun adventures.

Last Friday we went out on the town with the Navy folks to celebrate Orders Reading. On Saturday we headed to somewhere Austin has always wanted to go on his birthday...Medieval Times.

Yes, it is true - a 25 year old man wanted to go see pretend knights joust for his big celebration. I had gone a couple times via school orchestra trips, as had most of the other people who went with us, but we all went in good spirits anyway.

For those who have not been, you go sit in a specific section and cheer for knights fighting valiantly (read: choreographed in advance) for your amusement.You eat food with your hands, and hopefully drink some overpriced adult beverages to induce further cheering for your knight.

Of course there is a story that involves one of the so called "knights" being a dirty, rotten cheater (rest assured, he is NOT from your kingdom) who kidnapped the prince who was carrying a treaty of peace so that the countries would remain at war and he could be the ultimate champion. Right.

Austin had a fabulous time cheering for...the RED KNIGHT!  
(who was not the dirty, rotten cheater - whew.)

Here we are getting ready to watch some medieval jousting

and drinking overpriced, albeit HUGE, adult beverages.

(This is now his favorite chocolate milk glass.)

All in all we had a great time, though our knight was taken down prematurely.

Darn you Yellow Knight. Darn you to heck.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


It is hard to believe, but today is this blog's birthday! One year of posts! Crazy!!!

Oh is also this guy's birthday...

Happy 25th Austin!!!
 {Love you and congrats on being an "old" man ;) }

Friday, April 17, 2009

We are headed...

...back to Norfolk!!

Austin has been assigned to DDG-51, the USS Arleigh Burke!

No details yet, but as soon as we know - you will too! 

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Poll Results and List Details...

Well, the poll results I think reflect the personal vendettas - rephrase: agendas?desires? ha!

70% of people, or 14, of our friends and family voted that we go to Norfolk, with Italy coming in second and then San Diego. {I voted for Italy...sadly, there wasn't even a billet available time!}

Go figure, but Austin and I concurred with the majority! We/He ranked all Norfolk slots on the billet list! {ship platforms; Cruisers, DDGs, LHD, and may mean something to you military folk}

As a first tour, we figure that it would be nice to have a support network in place for us {read: me, when Austin deploys for 6 months and we have no children to divert my attention from the fact that he is gone...}

In the "comment" section we composed the following statement:

"I am planning to be married on July 17, 2009. These platforms are my preference, but it is of great importance to me -- and my fiancee -- that the ship I am assigned to will not deploy until after this date. Any effort to match accordingly will be greatly appreciated. Thank You."

I say anyone with a heart will do with they can, Austin says I am 'soft' from working with student affairs/'feelings'-type people.

Truly, I wanted to add a section saying that if familial support is integral to the success of the Navy, they had better not make his future wife's first feelings about the Navy be that of bitterness and resentment for killing her plans for this wedding...Austin thought that wasn't 'professional'...whatevs.

We shall see...we shall see...

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Birthday Bings!

Yes, I know...everyone is waiting for news on the list. Rest assured - when we have news, you will too! {he turns in the list tomorrow morning and we will find out on Friday}.

So to focus on more fun {and less anxiety-ridden} topics...

Yesterday was Bingley's 2nd Birthday!

Just a little under two years ago we brought home this little thing...

...who grew into this


We decided to make his birthday a little fun this year since he spent his first birthday at a boarder's while we were in Charleston for the wedding of the Deans {Happy Anniversary Guys!!!} 

Anyway, it was a gorgeous day, so we went for a nice long walk - and then we went a little over into the line of 'those people'. 


We baked our dog a cake. 

It's true.


Apparently it is not that uncommon, as when I googled "Birthday Cake for Dogs" this one came right up. I had all of the ingredients so we figured, hey - why not?

We stuck in some dog biscuits like candles and set him down for some pictures. We did not - I repeat, did not - sing Happy Birthday. It was hilarious to watch, so I will give you the story in photos.

 Hey Guys, is that for me?

Really? Can I have it? Please?


 um, please?
After he finished he passed right out in what we are pretty sure was a food coma. Cheers!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Oh, Navy...

Well, Austin got the billet list yesterday. Good news for those of you who voted for Norfolk, there are 16 billets in Norfolk, Virginia!

Bad News - the ship types are listed but not ship names.

That may not sound so bad to some of you land lubbers, but here is the explanation:

For example, there are 4 spots listed with aircraft carriers. There are currently 4 carriers based out of Norfolk, so this makes sense.

Unfortunately, the list does not differentiate between the Norfolk carrier spots, because there is no name attached to them.

This means that we cannot figure out the schedule for the ships and may end up ranking a slot high that would put Austin out to sea on the date of our wedding. Le sigh.

Also, there are certain types of ships that only have one slot – like there is one slot for an LHA and one slot for an LHD (both types of ships…google them if interested), but there are 5 or 6 of these ships based out of Norfolk and we don’t know which one is the one on the list of options.

Now, we knew that this (having a wedding with no ship assigned) would be an issue from the get go, but Austin was led to believe that there would be a little more information on this list.

I think we were both pretty stressed discussing this last night, but we have our ‘network working’ on getting as much information as possible (thanks guys!) and Austin is asking if he can get the names of the ships today in class…so cross your fingers that we can get some more information before the schedule is due on Monday!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Where in the World...

...are Courtney and Austin going to be stationed?

No - don't get too excited, we still don't know either (which puts a serious cramp on my job search), BUT we have more information on our time line!

Apparently next Wednesday, Austin will go through his OLQs, aptly nicknamed 'murder boards'. He will stand in front of a board of instructors who will quiz him on different scenarios and then rip apart his answers. They will also review his answers of questions like, "Why do you deserve to be an officer in the Supply Corps?" and they will review his extracurricular activities since being in Supply school (volunteer activities, leadership positions, etc). His final score will be factored in, like a test, to his overall grade, thereby affecting his ranking in the class.

These rankings are super competitive. The lowest grade Austin has ever gotten on a test was a 93...not bad, right? Wrong. He fell approximately 20 spots in the class, after this test even though he averaged between a 96 and 97 before that. Rankings here at the end are coming down to tenths of a point.

The reason that these rankings are so important is that when the billet list comes out, the Wednesday night of the OLQs or the Thursday morning after, the ensigns are asked to rank their top six choices, and are then matched based on their rank in the class. (For those sorority women out there - it is kind of like Preference round)

In any case, we will be getting the list next Wednesday or Thursday and then Austin will turn in his top six choices on Monday the 13th of April and then we should know where we are headed by the end of the week! Eek!

It is really exciting that this moment is finally upon us after months of not knowing, but I think we are both a little nervous and anxious for everything to work out the way we hope. There are a lot of variables that depend on this location and ship schedule, so the implications are huge. (You know, besides determining what our life will look like for the next two years or so)

Anywho, we just found this all out yesterday, so I thought I would keep inquiring minds informed! We will keep you updated through the process!

In the meantime, I am going to take to wearing my red trench coat and invest in a hat...kinda like this one:

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