One week after 'the break' I took Boy 3 in for a new cast and X-rays.  Everything is healing BEAUTIFULLY!  Here, check it out for yourself:
Doesn't that just make you want to gag? I wish I had an x-ray of BEFORE the pins!
Please excuse the spot...I spilled coffee...But can you see the break? Isn't it freaky?
In true CAV spirit Boy 3 picked a black and yellow cast (you know since glow in the dark wasn't an option).  He wanted to make sure he looked good for his Daddy's Change of Command. 

Per his doctor: best case scenario cast will be off before we leave for Seattle on the 11th.  YES!  We will all get to swim, fish and go boating!  Worst case scenario, it won't be off and he will have to go on vacation with a cast on which reduces our fun in the sun...WAIT, we are going to Seattle, there won't be sun - or so I have heard......
The movers arrived an hour late on Tuesday, 8 May.  I thought this was a bad omen.  I wasn't thrilled.  Really?  Late the first day? I can't stand it when people are late.   However after they arrived and got straight to work and didn't take a smoke break after 10 minutes I was beginning to forgive them.  (I'm not sure why/how anyone would forget their ID Card when coming onto a military instillation, but whateve's) After they worked for an HOUR NONSTOP I was really starting to like these ladies.  I loved the fact that they were all LADIES doing my pack out, and they were good at it.  They weren't just tossing my household goods in a box taping it up and marking it 'shoes' when it was really kitchen plates.  They actually LABELED everything that was in the box....This isn't a great picture, but you can see all the writing on the boxes:
The EXACT moment the packers won me over was when I ask them if I could pack my own shoes.  Our conversation went something like this:
Me:  I would like to pack my own shoes, do you guys mind if I grab a box and paper?
Movers: (looking at me like I am nuts) Sure we will fix a box up for you, but just so you know, we wrap EACH SHOE INDIVIDUALLY and place them in the box.
Me: YOU DO WHAT?!?! 
Movers: we wrap EACH SHOE INDIVIDUALLY and place them in the box.
Me: You are kidding me?  You are not serious...?
Movers: Really, that is how we pack shoes.
Me: OK, you can pack my shoes.

OK, I'm in LOVE.  Rocky's Moving and Storage, why can't all moving companies be like you?

Day 2 of the pack out was even better when one of the ladies ask me: "is there anything else you want me to put in
this box? I really don't like to mix boxes."  

I MUST be in the Twilight Zone.

By the end of Day 2 all of our household goods going to Korea were boxed and ready for the movers the next day. 

It was about 6PM in the afternoon, Hubby went to play golf.  I had just poured myself a little 'after the movers leave' cocktail, I had the remote control to the DVR in hand and was about to sit down to watch Private Practice when my neighbors daughter Kenzie came bursting in my house yelling "Mrs Trish, Mrs Trish, YOU NEED TO GET TO THE ER NOW!!  HURRY!!" and she ran back to her house yelling for me to follow her  - What the what, what?  

You see, Boys 2 & 3 were playing at the neighbor's house.  As I was running towards the neighbor's house I was expecting to hear screaming, but I didn't and in the few seconds it took me to get there I thought that Kenzie must have been exaggerating.  There was no yelling and I was seeing no signs of blood.  As I am trying to catch up with her (and with 1000 thoughts swirling through my head) I heard her say it was Boy 3.  He was hurt.  But I was confused.  There was no screaming, crying or sounds of any kind.  That is when I saw my neighbor Kayla with phone in hand leaning over Boy 3 (he was on her couch) asking me if I thought she should call 911.  My first reaction was 'why' - he was lying calmly on her couch, not even crying, but coddling his arm.  When he saw me, the tears started, he moved his hand that was covering his arm and that is when I almost vomited right then and there and said (not very calmly) YES, CALL 911!  I went into a mini panic. I sat beside him while Kayla called 911.  She ask for an ambulance, things were taking too long for me...I ask Kayla if they were sending an ambulance, she shrugged her shoulders and continued answering the questions the dispatcher was asking her.  Again, in my small state of panic the 10 seconds Kayla was on the phone seemed like 10 minutes so I ask her again if the ambulance was coming she shrugged once again and mouthed 'I don't know'. That is when Momma Bear went into growl mode and said 'GIVE ME THE PHONE.'  I took the phone out of her hand and ask in a not very nice way "is an ambulance coming or do I need to put him in the car and drive him to the ER?!?!"  That is when the very nice dispatcher said 'Yes, the ambulance is on the way, I just need to ask a few more questions' - I said thank you - again not very nicely and gave her back to my friend.  Grrrr..... Why couldn't she just tell us the ambulance was on the way before asking a million more questions?

While waiting for the ambulance I collected myself, called Hubby, told Boy 1 he was in charge, let him know where Girl was and grabbed my purse.

It took the ambulance a little longer than it should have because our street is not in any GPS system.  To me, this seems like a problem that should have already been fixed (especially for EMS) since our street is now 4 years old, but I'm not in charge of that.....

The whole time Boy 3 was pretty calm.  He wasn't freaking out crying, screaming or anything.  In fact he was so calm it freaked me out a little. When I ask him what happened he said, "I fell off the slide (a little tykes slide mind you) and Boy 2 fell on top of me and then I heard my bone crack."  
A little while later as he was lying on the couch still waiting for the ambulance he asks - "Mom, are you going to take a picture now?"   I just love that kid!  :o)

Upon arrival to the ER at Darnell they immediately gave Boy 3 morphine.  I ask if they had some for me, but I think they thought I was joking.  I wasn't.

See that big lump on his arm?  That is his bone sticking up.  No joke.  Compound fracture.  Thank GOD it didn't break through the skin.
Post morphine. He knew that his bone was broken and was telling everyone that he heard it crack.
Before they gave him the morphine, they ask him what his pain level was and showed him the chart.  He told them a 10. While I was talking to him I ask him again about his pain level and explained that a 10 is the worst pain ever and that at a 10 most people are crying.  I ask him if his pain was that bad - he said yes - but he had no tears, at all.  Since I am SO in touch with my feelings (some call it 'emotional basket case', but they are just mean) this didn't sit well with me, so I told him that it was OK to cry if he was in that much pain.  He told me he could cry, but he didn't want to annoy people.  MY HEART BROKE.  I told him to annoy away...this is a time that it was perfectly fine to annoy people.  That is when he said, "Mom, I didn't do my random act of kindness today, so this is my random act of kindness.  I'm not going to cry so I don't annoy people." 

How freaking precious is that?
I thought it was cool that they brought the x-ray machine to him. Look at that lump on his stomach is churning just looking at it.
Finally after about 4 hours in Darnell, they decided to send him to Dell Children's Hospital in Austin.  At this point I hopped in the car and headed home to grab a few things as I knew we were in it for the long haul now.  When I got home, I started throwing things in my bag getting ready to leave - that is when Boy 1 came in freaking out telling me something is wrong with Max (our dog).  OH DEAR GOD....are you kidding me?!?! I don't have time for this!!  Apparently after someone (I won't mention any names here) cleaned the kitchen after dinner they didn't put the trash away....(we had a roasted chicken for dinner) and Max decided to help himself to the garbage.  As he was enjoying a nice chicken bone (yes, I KNOW they are bad for dogs) it got stuck in between his teeth and across the roof of his mouth.  Again...ARE YOU KIDDING ME?  I have a kid in the ER and a dog that needs to go to the Vet ER.  OH MY GOSH - where is that drink I poured myself hours ago?  I tried to get the bone out, but couldn't.  I needed to get back to the ER so I could ride in the ambulance it with Boy 3.  CALGON!!  When I got back to the ER I told Hubby about the dog - he headed home to shower and to see what he could do about the dog...

Once we got to Dell Children's Hospital we had to wait again.  They didn't want to do surgery until 12 hours after Boy 3 had eaten dinner.  SO we WAITED some more.  At about 4:30AM they wheeled us into the room he would be in after surgery.  At 5:30AM they took him down to surgery.   Boy 3 needed a pediatric orthopedic surgeon and he needed another type of pediatric surgeon (I can't remember the name...) on stand-by as the main artery that does down the front of the humerus bone had been displaced and if anything went wrong, he needed to be close by.  Boy 3's doc was amazing!  He told us that best case scenario he would be out of surgery in 1 hour.  If he wasn't out in 1 hour he would have someone come talk to us.  He was out in 50 minutes!   

OH, and while he was in surgery we were finally able to get ahold of our moving company and put them on hold for the day.  AND Hubby told me that he was able to get bone out of the dog's mouth. 
Boy 3 on his way to surgery.
Moments after surgery - we call that blue thing his big blue lego. He had to wear it for 48 hours after surgery.
About 24 hours after surgery he took his first walk to check out this AWESOME hospital.
These next pictures were taken about 36 hours after surgery.  This is when we went to explore this amazing hospital.  There were things for kids to do all over!   They had play rooms, where the kids could do anything from art, to video games to build with legos.  There was a butterfly wall, a bat wall and a huge wall that was a ball maze (in the picture above).  The pictures below are in the MIDDLE of the hospital!  They had an atrium with waterfalls and gardens on each floor.  Boy 3 wanted his picture taken on every floor.
As Boy 3 was checking out of the hospital the toy cart came by!  Boy 3 got to pick out a toy and a book to take home!  How fun is that?!
OH, and through it all we did manage to get our stuff on the moving truck - even though the rain held us up for a while. 
Really.  I couldn't make this shit up if I wanted to.

Now, where is that bottle of wine one should always have on hand when PCSing? 
If you have never done this, do yourself and your kids a favor, go out and buy a 2 liter of Coke, a pack of Mentos and have a little fun!
I can't believe that 9 years ago this guy weighed in at just over 6 pounds and was sick and in the NICU.  Look at him now ~ happy, healthy and full of energy!  Boy 2 has been such a blessing to our family.  He is fun loving, funny, super sweet, has a kind heart and is the smartest kid on the block! I'm so glad I was chosen to be his Mom, he makes me look GOOD!  ;o)  

Last year Boy 2 wanted Jungle Jim to come to his party, however, Jungle Jim's daughter has a birthday the same day as Boy 2 and as it should be, her birthday trumped Boy 2's birthday.  This year, I called Jungle Jim again hoping that he could come to Boy 2's birthday party ---- that is when Jungle Jim told me HE MOVED OUT OF THE AREA!!!!  WHAT?!?!  NO!!!!  This would be our last chance to have JJ to come to a party, I begged a little, reminded him of last year and really just wouldn't shut-up until he caved and said yes, he would make the trip from Dallas.  Thank you Jungle Jim!  :o)
Birthday Cake made by B&N Creations
If you have been following me for a while you know I like to have at home birthday parties and we like to go big!  This party was no exception even though 3 days later we started packing out for our move to Korea.  I did give myself a break and had someone else make the cake (and had Jungle Jim do all the entertaining).  If you live in the Killeen/Fort Hood area and are in need of a cake B & N Creations are cakes sent from heaven.  Not only do their cakes look amazing, but they taste AMAZING too!

This year Girl & her friend helped make the party food!
Grasshopper Bell Pepper
Hedgehog Watermelon
Bug Juice! Gummy worm ice ring, and plastic bugs in the juice (too bad they didn't float)
Birthday Boy with the Albino Burmese Python
If big snakes didn't eat big animals I would consider letting Boy 2 have one, but I think the first time he had to feed it a bunny he might freak out...
Jungle Jim puts on an amazingly educational birthday party!  He is very thorough when teaching the kids about each reptile.  He teaches them how to hold them, feed them, what is special and unique about each one.  And he is SO GOOD with the kids (and adults).  The birthday child gets special attention and always gets to hold/feed first.  If you live in the Dallas area this is a once in a lifetime birthday party you don't want to miss out on! 
Happy Birthday Boy 2! I love you!
I'm not sure if you remember or not but on New Year's Day the kids and I hiked Chalk Ridge Falls in Belton and had a GREAT time! So when Hubby wanted to go for a hike a couple of weeks ago we knew just where to take him. Boy 1 opted out of this trip and hung with his 'boys' instead and even though we missed him terribly we still had a great time. The younger kids wanted to take Hubby on the same route we had gone before so we took off and started walking by the river.
The kids wanted to show Hubby the rock bridge we made on New Year's Day and check it was still there!
As we continued down the path we ran across some folks swimming, we would have loved to have joined them, but we brought no swimsuits! Arghhh....
However that didn't stop us....we just stripped down to our undies and jumped in!
We played in the water for over an hour just swimming, playing around and catching frogs and FISH with our bare hands....OK, so GIRL is the only one that actually caught fish with her bare hands but we like to think of it as a group effort.  In the end we came home with 2 new frogs and a few new fish. 

Once we were done playing in the water the kids wanted to show Hubby the CAVE.  Once we arrived at the cave we found THOUSANDS, and THOUSANDS of these bad boys:
That is right, DADDY LONG LEGS!!
It was SO FREAKY!  There were literally THOUSANDS of them....
This picture was taken right after we realized what all those little black dots were....check out Boy 3's face, it is priceless! He is not a fan of spiders, unlike his sister.
All in all it was a great day!  We hiked, we laughed, we played we swam, and some of us freaked out when it came to the spiders.  What made it all better is that Hubby was here to enjoy this day with us.  :o)
Hangin' with my handsome husband. I'm so happy to have him home!
With PCS season upon us and today actually being the FIRST of many pack out days for us I thought today was a good day to share my thoughts with you....

I try really hard not to stress over moves, the more we move the easier this gets.  I don't start 'prepacking' weeks early; I only do so a few days early.  I make sure the kids are out of the house.  I oversee the movers.  I have them wrap my antiques. Ziplock bags are my friend. I have ask movers to repack things.  I don't let them bump my furniture into the walls!  I tell them (in a nice way) the way I like things packed and labeled!  I have asked movers to leave my house. I ask them nicely NOT TO DUMP drawers or toy bins into boxes.  I expect things NOT to be perfect when I arrive to my destination.  I also expect to find the remote to my TV in the box labeled Christmas (if I did not ATTACH the remote to the TV - which I ALWAYS do now), and my bedside lamp in the box marked garage.  I've learned after 11 Army moves that these things just happen.  I've also learned that having a good bottle of wine on hand always helps at the end of a pack day!

When I ask my military sister wives  ( like that don't you?!) what they always do when PCSing I got some GREAT advice!  See what they have to say -  

Be ready for the date to change! ~ Jenna  Good advice from my sweet friend Jenna! I've heard of this happening MANY times, it hasn't necessarily happened to me, but I have friends that their entire PCS got changed, date, location and all! 
Hide the stuff you don't want them to pack!!! ~ Monica  Again, more solid advice!  The stories we hear! The worst that has ever happened to me is that our soap ~ an open bar of soap was packed, along with everything else in the shower.  Why anyone would toss a used bar of soap in a box is beyond me.  I know many people who have had their garbage, dog food, baby formula and PASSPORTS packed.  Make sure you separated your things people!  Oh and watch your pets, I have heard of a cat being packed as well!    Can you imagine unpacking that box?  "Oh, that's where Sponge Bob went!"
Avoid good-byes.  ~ Liz  This is something us Military Wives do well.  We choose to say see you later, if we even stop by to see you off at all.  It's just too hard sometimes.
Be prepared to lose money.  ~ Beverly  This is a given. Although the military gives you a moving allowance, it is NEVER enough (especially once you have kids!). 
Remember to make it an adventure!  ~ Kelly  This is GREAT advice!  Don't want to move to a destination the military is sending you?  SUCK IT the chamber of commerce and ask if they have a list of "top things to do" in the area.  Make it fun!  If you can't find something to do, MAKE something to do! 
Take a deep breath ~ Tracy  (AND have a glass of wine.)
Make sure you reserve on post lodging the day you find out you are moving! ~ Shayna  Because if you are moving in peak moving season and you don't make a reservation go ahead and take your tent with you because you will be camping!
Pack your underwear yourself!  ~ Lisa  Bahahaha!!
Have plenty of wine on hand!  ~ Pam  Pam IS a girl after my own heart!
Expect the unexpected! ~ Carey-Leigh And then some!
Feed the movers well and let them know you will tip generously if/when they do a good job. ~ Lori Just like a kids, rewards work wonders!
Empty your trash! ~ Lori Because if you don't, you just might see it in your new house!  
Ziplock all the magnets from the fridge, Polly pockets, pens and pencils. ~ Tori  I also ziplock all my curtain hardware and tiebacks, silverware, really anything that belongs together that could get lost or misplaced!
Prepare yourself for lost or damaged household goods.  ~ Michelle  And if it doesn't happen consider yourself blessed.
Disassemble your own furniture, bag up the screws, nuts/bolts and allen wrenches and pack those along with your screw drivers, pliers, drills and bits in a Green Bay Packer tool box and put it in your trunk so that you have everything you need to assemble it at the end. Movers are absolutely worthless at this. ~ LeAnn  I don't know about the Green Bay Packer tool box, but everything else seems right on. 
Send your kids off to visit family ~ Charlotte  If only it were that easy....  :o)
Know what your furniture looked like before it left...take photos and really read the bill of lading (lost stuff because of that!) & never let them fully unpack unless you want them to see al your "unmentionables!" ~ Roxanne  I tell them seeing my unmentionables IS their tip!  Haha!
Don't be afraid to ask the movers to take note of a few things. I have some unusual, fragile art pieces that I can’t'/don’t want to replace. I asked our last guys "I know this looks like a silly ____ but it is SO important to me. Please wrap this up really well for me?" smillllleeee! It is worth it.. Very few losses in all of our moves. Never filed a claim. ~ Tracy  Kindness typically wins in the end!
Count all your kids! ~ Diane I thought we lost something on the last move!
Save every TV remote, taping it to the TV doesn't count, it will be gone by the time your HHG arrive. ~ Rachel
Hey Rachel, maybe we have some of your remotes ~ tonight as we were going through them we found 2 extra!
Ask your packers to make box #1 your hardware box. Put all hardware, screws (labeled of course), remotes, etc... in this one box. The German's do that on this side of the pond, but the American's don't. Put those "do not pack" items in the trunk of your car. Because just putting them in a room with a SIGN that says "do not pack" isn't always good enough. ~ Heidi 
I would say take a little mini-vacation right before the movers come, just to see a favorite sight, and take lots of pictures. Make sure you download them & send to a family member/friend before you get on the plane with the camera. And either label your camera with your email address and a note about a hefty reward, or bring a camera you don't mind losing on the plane...  ~ From my SMARTASS friend Kim.
  SO what if I did this ONCE.  :o)  Bite me.
Realize it is going to be crazy for a little while, but in the end it will be fine. ~ Tim AMEN.  It will all be worth it when you wake up from that moving hangover in a few short weeks!
Have lots of cold beer...shot of "Jack" and know when to stay clear of "Household 6". ~ Randi  Rand-i (as I lovingly call him) is correct!  He just needs to add - have plenty of wine on hand to serve to Household 6
DO NOT feed the packers pizza! and prepare yourself for those 10 pounds that we always gain! HA! ~ Wanda  Really?  I always feed them pizza. 
Go visit someone and let your husband do it.... ~ Suzy  And I do believe this is the best piece of advice any of my friends had to offer!

And so it begins:
He's back!  The world is right again.  The kids are happy, I'm happy, life is good....

For a few days anyway......We have done this reintegration thing 3 times.  This time is our 4th time.  I thought we had it down pat.  I was wrong.  Hubby came home and all was good for 4 whole days.  Then it hit, the rough patch came and it threw me for a loop.  What the heck?  We are old hats at this. Typically we don't even fight, and we especially don't fight  4 days after Hubby gets home from war.  What is going on in my perfect little world?  I am crushed, not only were we fighting, but it was so bad I was ready to send him back to Afghanistan and I'm serious.  Girl was so upset that when I went to tuck her in she was crying and begging me to stop fighting with her Daddy - she didn't sleep much that night and neither did I.  What were we fighting about you ask? Stupid shit.  Seriously.  Stupid S H I T.  He felt like I did too much while he was gone and that I was too controlling (HELLO - I've been the only adult here for a year, yes, I'm controlling and while you were away did you forget I am Type A?).  I hated that he came home and went straight to work on the house - cleaning out stuff and trying to take charge when all I wanted him to do was sit back and hang out with me and the kids.  I wanted him to have a little down time, relax and have fun!  I wanted to stare at him, touch him and savor the moments.   What is wrong with him I thought - why doesn't he want to spend every second with his family?  I was hurt and crushed and quite honestly I wasn't being very nice about it. 

That is when I had to take a look at myself and remember a few things:
1. - He is the boss at work. When he tells the children what to do, they look at me to make sure it is OK and then I give them the nod.  This can't be a good feeling for him.   
2. - He has been living by himself for 1 year.  Seriously, think about that.  He has lived by himself for 1 year, and then he is thrown back into this crazy life of 4 kids, a wife and a dog.  Even though it is good stuff can you imagine?  He can never get away.  Someone is always hanging on him demanding his attention because he is like a new toy to us.  We can't get enough of him.  We want to love on him, ask questions and just be near him - CONSTANTLY.  Geezs, if I were him I would fake going to work!  No joke!
3. - He rarely had to report to people.  Now all of a sudden I'm asking him all kinds of questions, telling him he needs to be here for this,  and there for that, don't forget that so and so needs this....  and I'm constantly asking him where he is going what he is doing, blah, blah, blah....this has got to make him insane.
4. - Not only is reintegration hard, but let's throw an overseas move on top of it, just because we can.  I'll be surprised if we are still married after all is said and done.  (I'm just joking, back off ladies, I still love and adore him! ;-)
 5. INTJ.  He is an INTJ on the Meyers Briggs Personality test....I'm an ESFJ.  If you know anything about Meyers Briggs, you will know that an ESFJ is a bit much for an INTJ at any given moment, not to mention during reintegration.  My emotions and feelings are hanging right out there on my sleeve, on his sleeve, really on anyone's sleeve that will listen. INTJ's well, not so much.   

So why do I tell you all this?  For those young military wives that think they are alone in this, you are not. I'm a (cough)  "seasoned" wife and  I've been around this block a few times and it is different every single time!  We all have our ups and downs.  Life is hard no matter who you are or what path you are on.  You just need to keep your shoulders back, chin up and move forward!  (A good friend told me this just today!) I'm in it for the long haul and if that means I need to take a look at myself and change a few things then that is what I am willing to do.  I am SO honored and SO proud to live this Army life with the love of my life ~ even when the road gets bumpy.....