Thursday, March 17

A night I will never forget


 There I was in a car with its flashers on driving down the streets of O’Fallon, IL, a town I have never been too.  As I looked out the window, I could see hundreds of people standing on the side of the road. They had all come to pay their respects to man that given his life for them.  There were thousands of them, watching this procession .They had placed thousands of American Flags along the road and many were saluting as we drove by. It was dark by the time we made it into town but you could still see the sorrow and tears that filled most of their faces.   
I had only met him once, but once is enough to know this man deserved the honor he was given that night in O’Fallon, IL.
Tears keep falling down my face.  All I could think was these people did not have to be here. They did not have to be standing on the side of the road on a Friday night. Did they not have better things to be doing? Then with the tears still rolling down my red face I realized they all wanted to be here. To us he was a son, a brother, a nephew, a cousin and a friend but to them Zac Cuddeback was a stranger.  



They came because Zac had fought not only for the freedom of the people he knew but for all these strangers. They came to pay respects to a family whose soldier had paid the ultimate price.
It was a night that made me proud to be an American. A night that reassured me people still believe in this country and our military.  It was a night that reassured me that no matter what, my dad, my brother, my Tom did the right thing by serving for our freedom. 

 I will never forget this night. I will remember it as a night Americans showed their true colors. A night that it was okay that my twin brother was on active duty. A night that it was okay my father had missed so many dance routines, sports game, and birthdays.  A night that it was okay that Tom would be leaving me for years.
This night is a night that I will tell for a long time to come, not only to preserve Zac’s memory but  preserve the grace of Americans. 




Here is news article that show the support we received:
http://www.kplr11.com/news/ktvi-airmens-remains-return-from-frankfurt-airport-shooting-20110311,0,752881.story?track=rss

To Zac:
I wish you could have been there, to see the support this community gave to your family. All of the flags, the 300+patriot guard members and the thousands of strangers, all there to show they cared about what you had given. I know you would have loved it. The car your mom and Tim got to drive was awesome. They say driving it is like sitting in an airplanes cockpit. Can you believe the dealership let them take a 2011 BMW M3 (your favorite car) off the lock without having to pay a thing? Crazy I know. Thank you for fighting for my freedom. I am grateful that I got to meet you and that we got to share a few drinks together.  Can we make a little promise? Will you promise to be Tom's angel when he goes over seas. You see he is so excited to be fight not only for our countries name but also for you name now. Promise me you'll keep those baby blue eyes on him.




(I wish I had pictures that would show just how many people came out to show support but in that moment I would could not take pictures. There were over 300+ patriot guard that came out to show support and between 5000-10,000 people that stood on the street to show their respects to this fallen solider.)

Wednesday, March 9

The season of Lent

I will not lie, I had to think long and hard about what I wanted to give up for Lent this year.

In the past  couple of years I have given up soft drinks and and Facebook.
I was able to stay off Facebook but giving up on of my sources of caffeine didn't work. It might have lasted a week.

So what am I giving up this year?

I am giving up my addiction to watching TV while I am trying to fall asleep at night.
It's a horrible habit, not to mention it not a healthy habit to have.
Studies have shown you have a better night sleep when you have no tv's or computers in your bedroom.

I told Tom I was giving up this habit and he was shocked, mainly because he was hoping I was going to give up the sound machine that has been putting me to sleep since the 7th grade.


(He hates it with a passion.)

What are you giving up for lent?

Monday, March 7

Thankful Sunday on a Monday

So I was a little busy over the weekend designing a robot (that's another story on its own) and unfortunately did not have time to write down what I was thankful for this past week.

After everything that happened last week I have to say I am thankful for our military.

They do so much for us, more than we will ever know. I am thankful that they are out there fighting for my freedom.

Here are couple of soldiers I know personally that I would like to thank:

This is Zac, Tom's cousin. Zac lost his life on Wednesday, March 2, 2011 fighting for our freedom. He will always be remembered. Thank you, Zac!
This is Blitz, my daddy. This picture was taken in Afghanistan.
 This is Alex, Tom's Brother. He was a Marine and did 2 tours over seas. 

This is Toms brother, Paul, is currently in Washington. 
This is my twin brother, Conlyn, he left for active duty on Thursday and will be deployed to Iraq within the next month. 
This is the boyfriend, I do not have a picture of him in uniform because he leaves for training in May.

I am very thankful for these men and all the others I know personally, plus the others I have yet to meet.
You all hold a special place in my heart.

Thank you!




Saturday, March 5

stressed to the max

I am not going to lie, I am to the verge of tears.What am I suppose to do next year? I am a biology major whose school has not prepared me for the real world. What do you do with a biology degree? I would be a horrible teacher so I already know I can't go that route. So that brings me back to the question of what am I going to do next year?


What does a biology major do after college? I have applied to pharmacy school but lets face the facts it will be a miracle if I get in this late in the year.

I am debating going back to school and getting an interior design major, but that is another four years of undergrad. Is it worth it?

Should I try and just take a year off from school and apply to grad programs?

I don't know what to do with my life? Is this normal this late in the game?

I need HELP... please do you have any advice?

Wednesday, March 2

A fallen Soldier....

I don't know if you have watched the news today, but there was a shooting at the Frankfurt Airport in Germany. Two Air Force soldiers were killed and another two were wounded.

I was working in the research lab today when I read this head line for the first time. To be honest I didn't think much of it, other than the fact that I was sadden for those soldiers families.

Soon after I read the article the story past out of my working memory and I forgot about it, that is until I received a random phone call from the boyfriend tonight. He was acting weird and I soon realized it was because he was crying. Tom never cries and all I could get out of him was that his cousin had been killed today.

Then the article come back into my mind......

His cousin was stationed at the air force base in Germany.

 Tom never cries and to be honest I was in total shock from what he was telling me. Before I knew it he was rushing to get off the phone to talk to his brother but all I could get out of my mouth was I'm so sorry.... but all I was really thinking was my brother leaves for active duty tomorrow and Tom's brother is probably going to be going to Germany soon and gosh darn why did Tom have to join the military?

I only met Zac once .... but once is enough to know that he didn't deserve what that man did today in Germany. No one deserves that. He family doesn't deserve that.



PLEASE KEEP TOM'S FAMILY IN YOUR PRAYERS OVER THE NEXT COUPLE OF WEEKS. 

and remember to keep every soldier who is fighting for us and our freedom in your prayers.

(Out of respect to Zac and his family, I don't want to release to many details)


Tuesday, March 1

March 27

This is not Hank; however, I now think we should at least get him a birthday hat!
Its is coming up so soon....

Hank the bulldog will be turning 2. I can't believe its been two years almost since we went and picked him out from all the other bulldogs. He was the smallest dog there and he slept in his food bowl (I should have known then he was going to be one strange doggie)

Have you ever thrown a doggie birthday party before? What would the crazy snorer excited pee-er want for his birthday is he could speak (actually I wonder what kind of voice Hank would have if he could speak)?

Have any ideas on what we should do for the Hanker's 2nd birthday?