When your spouse has been away for awhile there is a little bit of a transition that occurs when he comes home.  This is something that Russ and I have been through before but it's been awhile.  The last time he was deployed was in 2006.  That was quite awhile back.  We are starting to get back into our normal family routines again but somethings are hard to let go.  For instance, I'm the one in charge and Brandon being the Man of the House.  Ut Oh! I guess I'm having a hard time giving up my role.  I kinda liked being in charge.  Evidently so does Brandon.  Last night after dinner we sat down to have a little family meeting. Basically we need to get back to our personal family values and live as four not three. We also realize this takes time.  It's not an overnight success. I started out the conversation with the kids and asked a simple question. "Who is the man of the house?"  Brandon piped up pretty quick and said, "ME!" He looked at Russ as if he was letting him know this is the way it was going to be.  I could tell this tugs at Russ because he wants to slide back into Daddy mode like he never left.  However, this deployment rocked our kids boat and we need to take it slow.  Russ explained to Brandon that he did such a fantastic job taking care of me and Alexis.  He was super proud.  BUT… he's back and now he's the man of the house.  It was time to give Brandon a break and let him (Russ) take care of the three of us.  I could tell by the facial expressions that Brandon was not taking this lightly but he took it all in. I also love how Russ is being very gentle with the kids emotions. It just takes time.


Homecoming's are always amazing but they are bittersweet.  When you've lived apart for so long it does take awhile to get back to your normal family dynamics.  One thing NEVER changes and that is the love that you have for each other.  In fact, I believe in the old saying, "Absence makes the heart grow fonder!"  I love him more today and I can tell the kids do too.  

This past weekend we were part of something pretty spectacular.  Operation Welcome Home Maryland is an organization that is welcoming home all the Troops from Iraq as they come home through BWI airport. They were also a big part of the Arlington National Cemetery Wreath laying event this past weekend.  90,000 wreaths were placed on the headstones at the cemetery.  It was an amazing event and the kids really enjoyed being a part of something so big.  They walked their little legs off but we were grateful to be with Russ on this day. 

Kimberly Van Diepen Stampin' Up!


Kimberly Van Diepen Stampin' Up!


Kimberly Van Diepen Stampin' Up!

Can I tell you one complaint? My car has been pushed to the side.  Russ bought a new car and he's taken over the garage.  Now my pretty car sits outside and gets CHILLY every night. Not only that, it has a big bird POOP on it.  Grr. It's my only complaint.  ๐Ÿ™‚

Kimberly Van Diepen Stampin' Up!



Lastly, the card.  It's been awhile since I've had anything creative on here.  Here it goes: This is for my Prince.

Kimberly Van Diepen Stampin' Up!


Kimberly Van Diepen Stampin Up!




Today's goal… Find the stamps, blow the cob webs off and make something pretty.  I'm going to pray this really DOES happen.

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19 thoughts on “Transition”

  1. Kimberly, you did a great job of explaining what military families go through.  It is so hard while they are gone.  But then the adjustment of them being home when we are used  handling things without them.  Sometimes I would forget to let my hubby take care of things, because I was so used to doing it alone.  I know you will all adjust and be that much stronger as a family.  So happy your family is united again.

  2. Kim, Praise God for answered prayer; Your husband is home and your family is back together!  Thank you for sharing your up and downs with us.  It has opened my eyes to all that a military family goes through and appreciate them even more than I already do.  I will pray that all transitions come quickly and everything goes back to normal.  I love the wisdom you and your husband have and how you deal with your children so tenderly.    Merry Christmas and a very blessed 2012.  Again, THANK YOU and all our military men & women who give up so much for all of us in this great USA and it's only great because of them.

  3. Kimberly, I know exactly how your adjustments are going. My husband used to travel for about 2 1/2 years each Sunday thru Thurs. During the week, the 2 kids and I would be on our busy school schedules and then the weekends would be utter chaos. How nice it was when hubby was home and no longer traveling! It took a while to adjust, but we got through it and we were all stronger. Blessings to you and your family-I am proud of all you do for our country.

  4. Oh Kimberly, I was so happy to read your recent postings. Your prince is home and that is the best gift of all.
    I admire what you have been doing showing the children the aqcts of kindness by helping at the homeless shelter and wreaths on the military headstones of someones father, mother, brother, sister, son, daughter, aunt uncle etc. You are right about family adjustment and it sounds like you handles that tremendously as well; you are great parents.  As much as I have missed you in the staming world, I admire you more for putting your family on the top shelp right where it ought to be. Merry Christmas Kimberly and God Bless You and your Family.

  5. Good luck with this phase of homecoming! Have a Merry Christmas. It is great for Russ to be home now. Hopefully he will have time off during this holiday season. I enjoyed the pictures of Arlington. Were the Girl Scouts not asked to lay wreaths also? Thanks for sharing.

  6. thank you for the recent up date; so many things happening, in such a short time, involving **everyone**……have a lovely Christmas holiday, so Merry Christmas [fr. Canada w/love]

  7. I'd like to thank your husband for his service to our country and your whole family for the sacrifices you've made.  No doubt SU helped you through many challenges, as it did me when my husband flew fires 7 months out of the year, with only two weeks at home.  We didn't have kids at home, I can only imagine how hard things must have been for ypur two at times.  What a blessing that you're all back together, at this wonderful time of year.  Wishing you much happiness in the new year.

  8. Kim-
    You are such a HUGE inspiration that I can not express into words just how much that means. I love reading your blog! I love how you balance being a mommy, Stampin' Up, deployment, family, etc, etc so well. You make such gorgeous creations that make me want to get out my Stampin' Up goods ALL THE TIME. I need to find the time to create more often.
    Thank you!

  9. I'm so glad your prince is home. Sounds like a normal family getting back to normal routines. Not that I have to experience my hubby being gone as long but he does leave for a week at a time to go hunting. I love how I'm in charge and don't have someone telling me what to do. Of course he comes home and starts letting me know how I can improve the house, laundry and kids. LOL. The joys of being married. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Hugs to you and love the card you made!

  10. Can only imagine how your household changes from 4 to 3 to 4 again…and am sure that Brandon will soon be willing to let Dad back into first place!   And you as well, especially with some of the things you had to endure the last few months….  Thank you for sharing some of your most private moments with your family.    The pictures of your kids at Arlington National Cemetary are so precious – especially the expression on Brandon's face.   To your Prince…welcome home and we all hope it's a long time before he is deployed again!    Merry Christmas to all of you!!!!

  11. My parents were one of the honored ones to receive a wreath this year.  My Dad died in 2000 and my Mom 9/23/2001.  While the services were going on for her, we could see the Pentagon all wrapped up in the blue tarps after 9/11.  This is the first time they have been fortunate to have a wreath placed on their grave site.  My husband and I were there early Sunday morning and now they have 3 wreaths!  Thank you to you and your family for particpating.

  12. So glad to hear your Prince is home. You have all done such an amzing job to get to this point and I feel a little humbled to have been able to share the journey with you through your blog. Like I have said so many times before I have learnt so much and feel I have a deeper appreciation for the sacrifices of military families. Thankyou.
    I wish you all a happy Christmas and peaceful baby steps through the transition to having Russ back home.
    oh, and your card rocks as always ๐Ÿ™‚
    Claire in Melbourne

  13. Hi Kim,  I'm so glad to see that the Prince is back home again with the family!  I haven't had time to check in for awhile, and finally today I made time.  I was so excited to hear the good news!  You are an amazing lady !!!  Life has all kinds of ups and downs and I think you do a super job !!  Please tell the Prince "WELCOME HOME"  and THANK him for me!!  I so enjoy reading your blog!  I hope that you had a Wonderful Holiday and Wish you the BEST for the New Year!!!
    Hope to see you at Convention again this year!!!  Hopefully, I can find Dawn a lot quicker this time.  LOL
    Big Hugs  !!!

  14. Kimberly I am glad that Russ is home safely and you had him for the holidays. I am sure the BEST present ever! Transition is tough, and will keep you in our prayers and that it so as God wants. As a fellow new demonstrator, I follow you and love your idea's. Thanks for such inspiration. Your a great gal! Keep strong and take time for yourself. xoxo

  15. Hey Kimberly,
         was just reading your post….for many years, I provided cards for the Welcome Home Maryland program.  The cards, Thank You and/or Welcome Home were put into each "goodie bag" that's given out to each military person as they enter BWI through the International Terminal.  It's an awesome program !  Loved the wreath laying….gave me goosebumps.  Glad your honey is home safe and sound.  My oldest son, Jamie, returned from his deployment in Nov and my son, Steven, will get home mid January.  Having both deployed at the same time was rough !  God Bless !  May 2012 bring you peace and much happiness !     ~adrian

  16. SOOO glad he's home! I'm sure Brandon did a great job holding down the fort!  So cute!!!
    My brother was deployed on 11/7/11 and his job is controlling the airspace to send our troops home!  Mike (my bro) will be home in May.  He's with the 123rd Air Control Squadron with the National Guard out of Blue Ash, Ohio.  It's always so hard when he's away (it's his 2nd time to deploy), but now that he has a 2 year old, it's even harder.  THANK GOD FOR SKYPE! 

    Donna ๐Ÿ™‚
    PS – I love the pics of the kids at Arlington…so very sweet.

  17. My daughter is in the Air Force and she was there putting wreaths on the gravesites as well.  It was very memorable for her too.  It's so great that you and your kids did that. That's a great way to show them respect for our soldiers. 

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