Monday, July 20, 2009

4th of July in Iraq (on the 6th of July)

A few pictures of the 4th of July (taken on the 6th of July)

Primary & Special Staff - I am third from end (at the tail end of the Chinook)

Primary & Special Staff with Brigade Commander - I am second from end on the Blackhawk side (if you can tell the difference between a Blackhawk and an Apache)

My legal office - I am in the center wearing the Stetson
My trial counsel on my right and my NCOIC on my left with my paralegals forming the wings

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Ok July's update to this point(:

Here we go again. I know Josh left some pictures and they are great(: Go Josh(: Her are some more from the home front here in Texas. We went to a freinds house for the Fourth of July and had some fun, ate food, of course and saw some fireworks. It was truely a day to be grateful for our Freedom as we know it dosent come Free.

For a fun day we all went to a place called Wazoo. It is an indoor jumping place for the kids. There is also a little kids area with other cool toys to play with. They had a blast.
(Matthew-motorcycle, Michael-trees)
The kids and I are having a busy summer. For those who dont know I have gone back to school part time. I have my first finals this upcoming week...eeeeekkkkk. Breath, breath, it's not like labour(: Ok I am a little nervous. But it has been another growth experience that is for sure. Not like I am not busy enough holding down the fort with the five wild child(s).
Speaking of school. I will have three in school this August. Wow how the time flies. Adam will be going into grade 2, Emma grade 1, and Seth-man into Pre-K. I will keep you all posted(:
Did I ever mention how badly Emma wants a sister? Here is why I ask(:
But as for now it is time I must get going. Till next time I leave the feast after the famine(:

It has been a while

Ok I will be playing catch up here so please bare with me(:

So now time warping to June lets see some of the fun the Smith's had(: Oh fun kite flying(: all the kids had their own little kite and it was a perfect day to fly them as long as they weren't caught in a tree, like Emmas, or tangled around the playground(: it was a lot of fun that day.
Seth Matthew Emma, Seth, Adam
Later in the month the kiddos recieved comfort quilts from the Armed Forces YMCA. Our unit is the first ones to start that here at Fort Hood and I volunteer there when I can. Here are a few pictures from there too(: I call these quilts "daddy quilts" (: The kids love them.

Adam, Seth Emma Michael(bottom) Matthew(top)
I also have some pictures of Michael and Matthew going potty for the first time(: No this does not mean they are potty training even though it would be great it just means they got it in the right spot and not on the floor(:
We have been trying to keep pretty busy here in Texas, or as much as you can when it is so hot your pool feels like a bathtub.
The kids are growing so fast and time is going by. Some days not so fast but still going by(:
Gonna close there but Continue July in just a minute....I hope you enjoy the updates(:

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Letter to My Family

I write from Iraq to my dear wife and our wonderful children. As I scroll down the BLOG and smile and yearn to be with my wife and children. My boys Seth, Michael and Matthew standing in the hall acting pregnant and just being boys, my sweet Emma resting her head against her mother before final farewells and giving of her strength freely and warmly, and my oldest - the current man of the house - Adam standing tall ready to assume that responsibility for a year at an early age. With this I look back to those that preceed me in this great calling as a Soldier, no matter what flag flew in front of them and directed their course.

War has its physical, emotional, and mental hazards in and of itself, but that is something we all volunteered for and welcome. Some people are made for these responsibilities and risks and enjoy and excel at overcoming the challenges natural in our line of work. Our tasking is to enforce political will with the sword without public question. We are trained and disciplined to use various and appropriate levels of force to accomplish those ends as we are ordered to do so. We proudly wear our flag, from whatever nation, and serve our country with honor and dignity. Our blood, our sweat, our tears, our hearts, and our minds go into every tasking we are given because we know for whom our service is rendered.

We serve those little ones we leave behind. We served those whom we love. My wife and children can enjoy freedoms paid for by those who proceeded us and our future will continue to enjoy those freedoms by our current sacrifices. Sacrifices, which above anything what any insurgent or enemy combatant can dream of doing, include the temporary separation from loved ones.

My wife and kids can hold their heads high and say that they have served their country. They will go a year or more during this deployment and will continue to face many more months and years without their dad physically present in the course of military service. They must bear the true brunt of warfare as they are forming their impressions on the world and their character on how they will engaged that world. They are called to grow and mature more quickly then some and some much more quickly than others. Our future depends on sacrifices at both ends but more importantly the future depends on how our children glean the appropriate lessons from their sacrifices and incorporate into their character to make them leaders for good when they are at the helm.

I love each and every one of my children and the wonderful wife and mother who is taking each day with stride as the strippling mothers of old had to with their sons and daughters.


A Soldier

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Patch Ceremony

A few pictures from the patch ceremony for our Brigade where we officially put the combat patch of the 1st Cav on the right shoulder.