Monday, April 12, 2010

My Brother - The United States Marine

Well, I'm back home and trying to get back into the groove of things. The last few days have been exciting, emotional, and exhausting. Today, I will be skipping the Monday Minute that Ian hosts, to tell you all about the last few days in Parris Island & my Brother - The United States Marine. That doesn't mean, however, that you can just skip out on Ian, make sure you go check out his blushing red topic for the Monday Minute questions today. I'm serious, you'll blush.


It would be an understatement to say that this trip to Parris Island had been highly anticipated for the last 90 days. It was all we thought about from the moment my brother hopped in a van and left us all standing outside of the Recruiters Office that cold Sunday morning. We wrote letters back and forth, and waited; waited for April 8th to arrive.

There will never be another experience like the one we witnessed on Thursday morning. It was the moment we laid eyes on Errett for the first time in 3 months. His Platoon marched into the All Weather Facility, and there he was; front and center...literally. I tried taking pictures, but my hands shook so much, the tears poured down my face, and my heart felt like it was going to explode with excitement. It was nothing like anything I had ever experienced. Even walking down the aisle the night I got married was nothing compared to this.
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The first picture is his platoon marching in, and the 2nd is an example of how bad I was shaking because of the blurry-ness of the picture. He is almost directly behind the D.I
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I had to switch the setting on my camera because I was shaking so bad. The quality isn't as good, but at least you can see his face sharply

Thursday was Family Day, so we got to spend nearly an entire day with my Brother, as he showed us around Parris Island. I know he got so tired of the millions of questions that we were asking, but this place so different. We wanted to know everything! This is where my little Brother had lived for 3 months...we wanted to know everything! Three months ago, my Brother would have gotten pretty frustrated with us all and our questions, but this new Errett...the Marine Errett, he was patient, and kind, and never once did he yell, "I'LL WRITE YOU A BOOK!" when one of us asked our thousandth question.
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The first picture is us all together, me on the end, and the second picture is Errett in his Port Holes that he had to wear.
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The first picture is him eating his first non-Boot Camp food, and the 2nd picture is his Barracks. He had top bunk
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Me and my Marine Brother, and Breezy with her Marine Uncle!

Family Day ended around 3 p.m. We left our Marine, and headed back to where we were staying for the duration of our time. We went to bed early that night, because the next morning we were going to have to leave at 6 a.m for the Flag Ceremony at Parris Island and to see our Marine graduate.

Graduation Day was amazing too. It was held outdoors, the sun was out, and it was a beautiful morning. Perfect for a Marine Corps Graduation! Although, I was a little disappointed that I wasn't able to pick Errett out as easily as we had the day before. They weren't in the same order as they had been Thursday morning. Regardless, it was a beautiful ceremony. I loved hearing the Marines respond to their Drill Instructors (you can't call them Sergeants or they'll kick your butt), and I love watching the move. Everything was just so perfect! After they were dismissed, which by the way, was the most artful form of dismissal I have ever seen in my life...Errett made his way over to us, anxious and eager to leave.
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What was the first meal he wanted after Boot Camp?

IHOP (yes, the International House of Pancakes)

What was the last meal he wanted before he left for Boot Camp?


I guess you could say that we like IHOP. We choose it for every occasion. We're not redneck though, so don't hate.

Anyway, we finally got home late Friday night and had a pizza party for him that he had requested in previous letters to us. He had also requested a cookie cake, which we also had. He was glad to be home, no doubt. Yesterday, he put on his Dress Blues for church. By far, my favorite uniform, although, he did skip the coat because...well, it was 80 degrees and it's made out of wool.
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This whole experience has been inspirational to us all. Paul is even seriously considering joining the Marine Corps himself. It's something that I could definitely see him doing, but it's also something we need to think and pray about. I mean, we have a family. It would be a lot harder, but it would be way worth it.

I took nearly 300 pictures, and since I couldn't show them all to you, I will be uploading them to my flickr account and I'll let you know when they're up so you can have a lookie! Thanks for patient with me, and I hope that things can get back to normal. I'm supposed to start p90x today, but I have so much to get caught up on...I'm thinking about putting it off another week. We shall see though. I hope you all had a wonderful week/weekend.

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Sam said...

Congratulations to your brother and your family -- you must be so proud!

Great pictures, your brother is a very handsome Marine!

And hey, nice to know I'm not the only one with a younger brother who dwarfs her ;p

Congratulations, & can't wait to check out the rest of the pictures!

Ian said...

So he's done boot camp, right? What's next?

Kristy said...

What an amazing experience! I can tell how proud you are.

B said...

Congratulations! What an amazing experience. A lot of my family has been in the Air Force/Army, and their ceremonies always give me chills.

Bree is so beautiful, BTW!

Hair Bows & Guitar Picks said...

That is so awesome!

Great pictures!

Melissa said...

Awesome post and congrats to your brother (he is quite an attractive man... I hope that doesn't upset you that I said that, but really... he is pretty cute).

Anywho... the picture of him and Bree is adorable!

And IHOP is definitely tasty!

Good luck with whatever Paul decides to do... and don't stress too much about trying ot get back in the swing of things... it's hard enough to do as it is... and getting back to the blogging world certainly doesn't have to be your priority.

"Talk with" you later!

- Melissa

Bendigo said... that post you brought me back 25 years to my boot camp graduation. It's a truly awe-inspiring event. I wish your brother the best...Well I guess that would make him my brother now too :)

Close order drill is an experience for people that have never witnessed it. Some marching bands are fairly good, but none can compare to a well trained military unit. To say they are precise is an understatement.

OOH RAH ...Semper Fi !!!!

Joe Cap said...

Great pictures, you guys look great together!
And by the way, I love IHOP!!

Shell said...

What great pics! He looks so grown up. You must be so proud of him.

I'll pray for your family's decision of if Paul should enlist.

P.S. There's totally an IHOP by Camp Lejune. Across from the hospital where I delivered my oldest- I sent my dh across the street to get me some pancakes after I had my son. LOL

Mommy Lisa said...

I like IHOP...we only have one near us though and my hubby hates going to it.

Congrats to your brother and family.

Brandy said...

Yay. That's awesome. I can understand where that deep sense of pride comes from. I remember going to chris's air force graduation and all the emotions were just all over. Congrats.


Awesome pictures! Congratulations to you and your family once again!

Laura said...

I loved reading this, especially as my brother is graduating as a US Marine on Friday. Unfortunately I can't be there myself (I live in England and am moving house the day after his graduation) so I have been trawling the internet for videos, pics and people's experiences of the graduation just so I get a taste of what it's like. I am so sad to miss it and wish I could be there to show him how proud I am of him. Thanks for sharing this - it's nice to hear a sister's story! :)