Monday, December 28, 2009

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas from the Yllescas girls! I hope you were able to enjoy the holidays with your loved ones. We received a LOT of snow! I got snowed-in in Iowa but it was with great company and we had fun playing games and making forts in the snow. :) I finally made it to my parents yesterday where the girls opened their Santa gifts and next weekend we will have our family Christmas with them since it had to be post-poned.   Christmas was less of a blur and a little easier than last year, but we still miss Rob terribly and wish he was here with us.  I can't believe how fast the month of December has gone by. The 2nd week of December, Julia and I were invited on the Snowball Express. This is an organization for children who have lost a parent in the war since 9/11. It is an all-expensive paid trip and this year it was in Dallas. The whole experience was so amazing. When we got off the airplane in Dallas, people were clapping for us and waving flags.  The whole weekend consisted of so many different activities including the Southfork Ranch, Mesquite Rodeo, Dallas Convention Center, and the Dallas Cowboy Stadium.  There were about 1500 of us.  Julia and I had a blast and I know it helped her see that there are other children in the same situation as her.  The most amazing thing to me during the trip was how the Patriot Guard Riders escorted us everywhere.  On 2 different days, the main interstate was closed down just for us as we had a motorcycle police escort followed by the Patriot Guard Riders to our destinations.  It was quite a site:  24 buses carrying 56 people, 20 or more motorcycle police, and at least 60 Patriot Guard Riders going down the interstate.  I'm sure people were wondering who the heck we were! :)  Please have a safe New Years and I will write again next year...

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

It's been a year

A year has passed.  Yet it seems like yesterday that my world came crashing down and I had to make the hardest decision of my life.  It’s still so hard to believe he is gone.  It’s been a year and yet still so surreal.  So much has happened in a year.   A year ago, I never would have pictured my life where it is today.  With the help of my wonderful family and friends, and the hugs and kisses from my beautiful girls, I have managed to put one foot in front of the other and try to make the best out of a horrible situation.  Over the past year, there were days that I wanted to lay in bed, put the covers over my head, and never wake up.  But how would that help the situation any?  How would that make me a better mom?  And Rob would NOT want that.  This is my reality.  This is my life now.  Nothing I do will change that.  So, for my sake and the sake of my daughters, I need to make life as normal and happy as possible for us. Our life will never be the “old normal” so we’re making a “new normal”.  I’m learning that God does continue to bless, even through tragedy.  Yesterday we came back to Osceola and Julia didn’t go to school today.  This morning I went to the gravesite.  What a difference one year makes.  It’s full of grass.  Then, I decided to try to make a sad day into a happy one.  I surprised Julia with a new puppy.  He is a havanese, black and white, and absolutely ADORABLE!  He loves people (and kids) and is such a snuggle bug!  He took to us right away and Julia is so excited.  His name is D’ogie (pronounced D.O.G.—hahaha).  It has made the day so much easier for us.  Yesterday I put together a slideshow of pictures from Rob’s final homecoming to Nebraska, his wake, funeral, Memorial Service at Ft Hood, and Memorial Day.  I’m going to try to figure out how I can post it on here and when I do, I’ll post it.  It’s a great tribute and shows the pride Americans have for soldiers.  Again, thank you so much for the support you have shown the girls and I throughout this past year.  It has meant so much to us!!