and yet, a sweet friend of mine called and came over, ready with hugs and encouraging words, to help us get through our first, always tough, first day. Tanja was sweet enough to invite us to eat lunch and then made a trip to the Commissary more fun than it’s been in a long time. She’s a reminder that regardless of how alone these deployments feel, because we miss our other half in such a raw way, that our friends and family can help see us through, that we don’t always have to rely on our own strength and grit.

Obviously, homeschooling was out the door today. Between sleeping in from the early morning send off, and our time spent with Tanja, there just wasn’t enough time to squeeze it in.

We did, however, manage to squeeze in an art project. I absolutely love The Artful Parent. Many a day I’ve found myself wondering what art project to tackle and been saved by this amazing blog : The coffee filter hearts were too cute to pass up. Little Brooks LOVES cutting paper and had such a blast making snowflakes over winter break I thought it would be a great project for our first day alone.

He was so serious while making these since right away he planned on sending some to his Daddy. His little tongue was poking out of his mouth and his face was etched in pure concentration.

Remember how I mentioned the lack of traditions during deployments? One I am particularly particular about is my daily letter to my beau. Regardless of how much I talk his ear off I can still find more to say in my letters to him. Knowing he’s got a little piece of me waiting in the mail for him each day is such a solace to me. I try to include something small from The Boy when I can, and am hoping to send one thing, letter, drawing, whatever it may be, to him each day.

So we sat down and Brooks cut out words from the newspaper he felt described his Daddy. He glued them (and this shows how much he loves his poppa because Little B detests glue) on to the paper just so and added his favorite heart to the mix.

We can’t wait for the word to start sending mail. Until then it will just pile up and he’ll have to contend with a backlog of “I love yous” and “We miss yous”.