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#61 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 05:30 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Blueone View Post
Hi, I'm new here and an army wife. My husband deploys in January and we have a 2 month old son. We live in Watertown just by Fort Drum. Anyone else out there?

I'm also new to this lifestyle, my husband joined back in February so any tips on deployments with a baby would be great!
My ILs are from up there - beautiful country! Wish I knew anyone but really I know there is a great community down at Salem Christian Church in Beaver Falls just south of you, that's it.

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too badly. I've got burns on my hands and ears, a couple on my arms.

I'm in Germany right now, in Landstuhl. (if anyone is close, I'll be here until Tue a.m.) I'm in the medical hold building, Rm #101. I'm going home on Tue, if the Dr. thinks I'm not bad enough to go to a burn center in TX.
Holy Moly Sarah! I'm glad you are okay - how long will you be back for? Is this the end of your deployment or do you go back after healing?

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#62 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 05:47 AM
 
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Can I ask a question of those of you who've had a baby while your husbands were away?

<snip>

I'm not sure how to think about this. On the one hand, I know that if I have to do it, I can do it. Women give birth by themselves all the time. I'm sure it's no one's first choice, but you make it work.

But I also find it a completely overwhelming idea. How did those of you who've done this wrap your minds around the idea?
I had DS while DH was deployed overseas. He left when I was about 30 weeks and didn't come back until DS was 4.5 months. The thing that helped me the most was that it wasn't a surprise. We knew there was a good chance that DH was going to deploy that spring when we got pregnant, so I had plenty of time to come to terms with it. I didn't go home to have DS, but my parents came out right after he was born to help out. I had a very close friend (another military wife) who had a few kids be my labor coach. While I wish DH was there, I was so glad to have my friend there because she knew what I was going through and was a big help to me during labor and delivery (probably more than DH would have been, if I'm being honest).

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#63 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 05:52 AM
 
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Who should I call and how should I start the dialog?
I think he should talk to an active duty recruiter - and then you might want to double-check everything the recruiter tells you (I don't actually think that recruiters are lying to you, but especially if the MOS he's interested in is a bit more obscure, I think recruiters often just don't have all the right information to share). If the recruiter tells him he can guarantee loan repayment (something I think they should be able to give him), a specific MOS, a specific school, etc. get it in writing before signing anything!

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#64 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 05:54 AM
 
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While I wish DH was there, I was so glad to have my friend there because she knew what I was going through and was a big help to me during labor and delivery (probably more than DH would have been, if I'm being honest).
Good point. I guess my first stop if this happens should be lining up a good doula?

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I didn't want him to miss that, but I didn't miss him, if you know what I mean. Not at that time. That doesn't answer your question but that's how I did it. :
Thank you! That makes total sense.

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#65 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 06:42 AM
 
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A good doula is GOLDEN especially with a possible not-home DH. I even paid mine extra to be my "partner" in birthing classes.

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#66 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 11:02 AM
 
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Can I ask a question of those of you who've had a baby while your husbands were away?
Personally, I was a little upset when I found out DH was going to be here for the birth because it means he will be gone longer after the baby was born. (And this is his first baby too). Now, he will be here for the birth and about a month after but then he's gone for nine months. The other ladies had great suggestions - find a doula or a family member so that you don't feel all alone among indifferent nursing staff. Second, rejoice in your strength for being able to do this alone and know that he will be home soon to meet the baby. Most husbands/fathers feel pretty ineffectual the first couple weeks anyway because there's not much they can do. And I know its a stupid reason but its only recently that men were even allowed in birthing rooms. This was primarily a woman's thing like up until the 70's or so. Not that I want to go backwards in time and forget the great strides we have made but there are many more women who have given birth alone than those that have had their husbands at their sides.

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#67 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 11:04 AM
 
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Dh is about a month away from finishing his National Guard BCT and is thinking of switching to regular Army. He's been told that he could do that by seeing an Army recruiter in between BCT and AIT and that would let him go to AIT for a different MOS than his current one. His current one was chosen mainly because with him going into the reserves, we didn't want to move just for the one weekend a month. It's a vital one, but not one that uses any of his college training.
I don't know if going enlisted is different but since DH is a college option going straight to Officer School in the active army, he does not get to pick his MOS unless he graduates at the top of his class. They will pick one for him. Its definitely an incentive for him to do better but please look into all of it before you make a decision.

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#68 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 11:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Missed the Fort Drum post! We went to college in Potsdam, NY and DH did drill at Fort Drum, I'm not there now but it's not a bad place to live. Lots of new housing has been going up, there isn't a ton of stuff to do but it is farely small town-ish compared to other posts.

lalemma - Lots of great advice so for. I ended up giving birth to DD two weeks after DH left on this deployment. We didn't end up finding out that he'd be deployed sooner until I was 5 months pregnant, and then didn't get a straight answer as to whether he'd be here for the birth until a month before he left. Her birth really shaped my perception of everything, all of these ladies can vouch for my rotten mood after we knew DH was leaving.

I was really resentful and angry, but her birth felt like some kind of message to me that this is just the way it was supposed to be. She was born accidentally unassisted, and that was definitely the next best thing compared to him actually being here for the birth (not that I'm saying you should do the same). It's okay to be angry about this and hurt, but do your best to not let it reflect on your pregnancy, birth, and baby. That is the greatest piece of advice I can give you, I think in the military you're often told to just abandon your emotions and move on and forget about it but that isn't healthy for anyone. Find a doula and do your best to make this as memorable and positive of an experience as you can. Take lots of pictures and videos, and be as involved in the process as possible.

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#69 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 12:34 PM
 
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#70 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 12:40 PM
 
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Have him go into the Guard and change his MOS one he is in there - the people who are trying to change his mind have an interest in him filling a job in the regular Army where your MOS can be ignored for the "Needs of the Army."
I agree. Why did he sign up for the guard in the first place? My DH is Army for many reasons, but there are lots of MOSes (um... that didn't work ) in the guard, too.

Deployment is not only time away from you and baby. It's time spent in a very harrowing situation, and while I am proud of my husband and every person that makes that choice, it's not something I would weigh lightly, you know?

It's not that the stay-at-home-parent gets to stay home with the kids. The kids get to stay home with a parent. Lucky Mom to DD1 (4 y) and DD2 (18 mo), Wife to Mercenary Dad
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#71 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 03:38 PM
 
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Have him go into the Guard and change his MOS one he is in there - the people who are trying to change his mind have an interest in him filling a job in the regular Army where your MOS can be ignored for the "Needs of the Army."
Definitely helpful

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Originally Posted by lalemma View Post
I think he should talk to an active duty recruiter - and then you might want to double-check everything the recruiter tells you (I don't actually think that recruiters are lying to you, but especially if the MOS he's interested in is a bit more obscure, I think recruiters often just don't have all the right information to share). If the recruiter tells him he can guarantee loan repayment (something I think they should be able to give him), a specific MOS, a specific school, etc. get it in writing before signing anything!
That sounds hard to do in the couple of days between BCT and AIT.

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I don't know if going enlisted is different but since DH is a college option going straight to Officer School in the active army, he does not get to pick his MOS unless he graduates at the top of his class. They will pick one for him. Its definitely an incentive for him to do better but please look into all of it before you make a decision.
He's interested in an MOS that's directly related to his degree, graduated with honors, he's used to working hard and really understands the area, getting in the top of his class wouldn't be a problem for him at all if it mattered.

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I agree. Why did he sign up for the guard in the first place? My DH is Army for many reasons, but there are lots of MOSes (um... that didn't work ) in the guard, too.

Deployment is not only time away from you and baby. It's time spent in a very harrowing situation, and while I am proud of my husband and every person that makes that choice, it's not something I would weigh lightly, you know?
Yeah. And how.

Thank you everyone! I'll pass that all on to him and let him decide if he still wants me to talk to active duty recruiters.

I think part of what he's worried about is not having a job after he's back from deployment since he's not really able to apply for jobs what with the whole going away for who knows how long who knows when.

He's also feeling like he had no real choice in his MOS since with his colorblindness there were only like 6 he could apply for at all and there was only one available in driving distance of our home.
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#72 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 05:06 PM
 
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Active duty recruiters tend to be really on top of their stuff! If your husband goes in one afternoon, they should be able to give him LOTS of information in just an hour or so. It shouldn't be a process that takes days and days.

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#73 of 238 Old 09-19-2009, 09:13 PM
 
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In the middle of writing up your info for dh, he called and told me he'd sent a letter saying nevermind.
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#74 of 238 Old 09-22-2009, 01:19 AM
 
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Ahhhh went to get on EFMP today. It took forever to get there and then I had to run around. Everyone was super, super helpful and sometimes I think I've gone back in time, people are so nice at the Army. I still didn't get halfway done. I should be filling in forms and stuff to apply for an expedited passport for DD2 (we're going on civvy passports, called "tourist" passports by some but I hate that because none of us got our passports for tourism- we got them for work, DD1 to follow mommy and daddy to work...) and to get on EMFP. There is so much stuff to do! Eeeks!

And storage is FULL of boxes... I need to go to the container store and then spend a whole day sorting and packing. Am waiting until DH arrives to do that.

It's not that the stay-at-home-parent gets to stay home with the kids. The kids get to stay home with a parent. Lucky Mom to DD1 (4 y) and DD2 (18 mo), Wife to Mercenary Dad
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#75 of 238 Old 09-22-2009, 08:59 AM
 
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Haven't posted to MDC in awhile & just popped back in. I am Debra, momma to 2...ages 10 & almost 8. DH is active duty Navy & we are stationed in Japan.

*Momma to a spunky 11 year old & diva 9 year old
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#76 of 238 Old 09-22-2009, 11:29 AM
 
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Haven't posted to MDC in awhile & just popped back in. I am Debra, momma to 2...ages 10 & almost 8. DH is active duty Navy & we are stationed in Japan.
Hi! How do you like Japan? I think it would be awesome but unfortunately since we're Army, I don't think its likely.

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#77 of 238 Old 09-22-2009, 03:14 PM
 
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Haven't posted to MDC in awhile & just popped back in. I am Debra, momma to 2...ages 10 & almost 8. DH is active duty Navy & we are stationed in Japan.
Aloha Debra!! I have a very good friend in Yokosuka, she loves it! We are in Hawaii and Okinawa is on our list but we are trying our hardest to stay in Hawaii. DH doesn't want Japan unfortunately. We've done a tour in Italy too, living overseas is such a fun adventure!

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#78 of 238 Old 09-23-2009, 01:10 AM
 
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Well, we didn't get her passport application in. They didn't accept the evidence that DH couldn't come. I'm afraid we'll never make it in time because the command said we had to have our passports BEFORE he could even leave his training station! Well why are they just giving us all of these papers now? I'm so confused and sad. I don't think we'll ever get there. I've filled in tens of forms and we keep going in circles. Nobody can help us figure out what we need, when, and what has to be done first. Everone keeps telling us, "Well why don't you have..." and I keep saying, "I didn't know I needed it. I'm new to all of this. It's our first duty station, our first PCS, my husband is not even done with AIT yet."

Please, someone, help us. Nobody at Ft. Lewis can help me until I'm on his orders, but I can't get on his orders until... I don't know what. I have to have all of us screened, then they have to send a form to Germany, then to Texas, then here, THEN we can book our move.

By then, DH will be gone and I'll be doing it all myself. I am literally crying right now thinking about it. I haven't eaten all day because I have NO TIME to eat, my kids did not nap, NOTHING is happening but this move and yet... even the move isn't happening.

Is it like this all the time with the army?

The one thing I thought it would be is organized.

It's not that the stay-at-home-parent gets to stay home with the kids. The kids get to stay home with a parent. Lucky Mom to DD1 (4 y) and DD2 (18 mo), Wife to Mercenary Dad
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#79 of 238 Old 09-23-2009, 05:40 AM
 
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EdnaMarie--are you guys getting no-fee passports thru the base? I know when we got orders for Italy, I had to do the screening (it was prekids), go to an overseas move class (where they explain everything!), get on EFMP (because of my asthma), get the no-fee passport done and my tourist one too.

What base are you guys going to? Sometimes the bases have websites that can help. Have you looked at militaryonesource.com additional info? On the side is "plan your move" and that might help.

And yes, welcome to the military!!

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#80 of 238 Old 09-23-2009, 11:39 AM
 
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There are no classes, no info for me, the spouse, because we are not stationed here at Ft. Lewis. The only reason I'm there is that my spouse is in training and this is where I live.

I can't believe that people from Bellingham or Spokane would have to drive out, get a hotel, and stay here until the process is done.

In fact maybe that's what I'll ask them. Suppose I lived four hours away and had a special needs child. THEN what would I do, instead of driving back and forth 90 minutes each way every day?

I am on militaryonesource.com and onestoparmy.mil.

But none of them let you do this part of the process online... or else I haven't found it.

I've been told we need EFMPs even though none of us has special needs. (That's from military.com... ???)

We are supposed to get no-fee passports through the base. The earliest appointment is seven days before we are supposed to leave. The passports take six to eight weeks to arrive. Pretty useless! I hope all our soldiers get passports when they enlist, otherwise they're gonna have a lot of people late to their duty stations!

It's not that the stay-at-home-parent gets to stay home with the kids. The kids get to stay home with a parent. Lucky Mom to DD1 (4 y) and DD2 (18 mo), Wife to Mercenary Dad
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#81 of 238 Old 09-23-2009, 01:32 PM
 
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There are no classes, no info for me, the spouse, because we are not stationed here at Ft. Lewis. The only reason I'm there is that my spouse is in training and this is where I live.
not sure if i am a huge help, but i am at Ft. Lewis so feel free to ask if there is something i can do.

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We are supposed to get no-fee passports through the base. The earliest appointment is seven days before we are supposed to leave. The passports take six to eight weeks to arrive.
i know that folks with plane tickets can get same day service in Seattle, certainly not free, but maybe the army has access to that same speed when it needs to. or in a pinch you can just knuckle down and pay.

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Pretty useless! I hope all our soldiers get passports when they enlist, otherwise they're gonna have a lot of people late to their duty stations!
Soldiers do not need passports for anything that involves the army, my Beloved has never had one and he was stationed in Germany in the 80's and has been to Iraq twice. He has also been on a mexico vacation with me and just had to have hid DOD ID and papers. So if they are sending him there, i would not worry, he'll be fine.

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#82 of 238 Old 09-23-2009, 11:45 PM
 
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Edna Marie- We live here at Fort Lewis and we have been stationed as a family in Germany. So if u have any questions feel free to PM.

I know for sure your DH will not need a passport...only his orders and ID card. You and DC will need a passport with a visa that allows u to live in Germany and not visit. The first thing to do is make sure ur DH has command sponsorship for ur family to have a concurrent travel with him. This will be noted in his orders to Germany.

The whole EFMP thing is to make sure that no one in ur family has any medical or educational needs that would either prevent being stationed in Germany or where in Germany to be stationed.
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#83 of 238 Old 09-24-2009, 01:09 AM
 
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Ack, I lost my post.

Bref- Thanks, mmgrimm and Adorkable.

You reminded me that I need to get pages in my passport for my visa. Can we get our visas in our civilian passports?

We had planned to pay- it's not THAT much more for express service- but it still takes two weeks.

So if we buy plane tickets, then they'll do it faster, but if we are cautious and plan ahead, they take their time. Great. Good to know. Is this an ask-for-forgiveness-not-permission type system?

It's not that the stay-at-home-parent gets to stay home with the kids. The kids get to stay home with a parent. Lucky Mom to DD1 (4 y) and DD2 (18 mo), Wife to Mercenary Dad
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#84 of 238 Old 09-24-2009, 02:03 AM
 
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Is this an ask-for-forgiveness-not-permission type system?
yep, sadly

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#85 of 238 Old 09-24-2009, 03:38 AM
 
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Edna Marie- We live here at Fort Lewis and we have been stationed as a family in Germany. So if u have any questions feel free to PM.

I know for sure your DH will not need a passport...only his orders and ID card. You and DC will need a passport with a visa that allows u to live in Germany and not visit. The first thing to do is make sure ur DH has command sponsorship for ur family to have a concurrent travel with him. This will be noted in his orders to Germany.

The whole EFMP thing is to make sure that no one in ur family has any medical or educational needs that would either prevent being stationed in Germany or where in Germany to be stationed.
His orders say family can go, but we're not listed in them.

We are trying to get listed...

It's not that the stay-at-home-parent gets to stay home with the kids. The kids get to stay home with a parent. Lucky Mom to DD1 (4 y) and DD2 (18 mo), Wife to Mercenary Dad
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#86 of 238 Old 09-24-2009, 03:49 AM
 
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Edna Marie- The reason for getting the passport through the military is they secure your visa for the length of your DH orders. Also without command sponsorship you cannot get military housing in Germany. Doing an overseas PCS move their are different rules than a stateside PCS when it comes to having your family with you. You really need to get the command sponsporship and military passports...I have seen when families show up without the proper paperwork and it was not good.
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#87 of 238 Old 09-24-2009, 03:53 AM
 
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Oh we are not going without sponsorship! How is that even possible? We can't afford the tickets, the moving of all our stuff, without the military. It's not even a question in my mind, don't worry. The question is, how can we physically do this so that we're with him when he goes three weeks from now if I haven't been able to get DD2's passport because both parents need to be there? Etc.

Can we go without the residency visa, just as Americans, and then get that while in the Schengen zone, once we have our no-fee passports? So that I don't have to face the prospect of flying with a couple of kids all by myself?

It's not that the stay-at-home-parent gets to stay home with the kids. The kids get to stay home with a parent. Lucky Mom to DD1 (4 y) and DD2 (18 mo), Wife to Mercenary Dad
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#88 of 238 Old 09-24-2009, 03:59 AM
 
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Unfortunately this happens all the time its called nonconcurrent travel...which the soldier heads out to report and the family comes later. The problem with travelling on the civilian passport is it is only good for so many days...if the military passports don't come in that time you have to leave the country.
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#89 of 238 Old 09-24-2009, 07:39 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mmgrimm View Post
Unfortunately this happens all the time its called nonconcurrent travel...which the soldier heads out to report and the family comes later. The problem with travelling on the civilian passport is it is only good for so many days...if the military passports don't come in that time you have to leave the country.
I agree.

We had to wait on our no-fee passports & had to do nonconcurrent travel. We just did that in July.

*Momma to a spunky 11 year old & diva 9 year old
*Proud wife of "The Rock"
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#90 of 238 Old 09-24-2009, 07:44 AM
 
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Originally Posted by remijo View Post
Hi! How do you like Japan? I think it would be awesome but unfortunately since we're Army, I don't think its likely.
Hi there! We love it for the most part. We're having a hard time with the Commissary not carrying any organic food at all & the selection of things such as produce is so sad for the price it is. You get 4 medium apples for around $10. We are going to check out some produce markets out in town on payday. Praying we find some good produce there!

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Originally Posted by MangoMommy View Post
Aloha Debra!! I have a very good friend in Yokosuka, she loves it! We are in Hawaii and Okinawa is on our list but we are trying our hardest to stay in Hawaii. DH doesn't want Japan unfortunately. We've done a tour in Italy too, living overseas is such a fun adventure!
Konnichiwa! That is awesome that you have a friend here. If she is looking for a new buddy, I always up to meeting new people. Would you mind asking her if you can pass along her contact info to me?! I don't know a lot of people here yet.

*Momma to a spunky 11 year old & diva 9 year old
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