Thursday, November 19, 2015

Road Trip Games

I bet it would be hard for me to find anyone that hasn't played games while on a road trip.  It could be finding every letter of the "alphabet" to "I spy" and the "license plate" game.  You know the one where you try to see how can find the most states? 
Well, I have a new one and one that could be very educational and at times even rewarding depending on what you do with that knowledge.
I have always been one to notice license plates.  It probably started when I was younger and we would drive from Tennessee to North Carolina and back.  First it was all about finding the most states (and you couldn't repeat one you already found) to trying to figure out vanity plates.  Those are usually pretty fun.
However, over the past 5 years I find myself noticing a different kind of license plate.  Military plates.  I don't mean Government plates.  I'm talking about our service members.  Have you noticed that every branch of the military has a plate in each state (all states as far as I can find) as well as some that specifically show what war they fought in if they had been to combat.  If they received a purple heart or other honors you might see those too.  There is also another plate that sadly I have on my car and that is the "Gold Star Family" plate. 
I try to make a point if I happen to be pulling into a parking lot or I am around someone with a military tag to say thank you for your service or I give another "Gold Star Family" a nod or smile if I see them and others have done that to me. 
These license plates aren't there for attention or recognition.  In fact, I would bet that most don't expect you to even notice let alone say something, but I have to believe that they are touched should someone make the effort to take a few seconds to just say thank you or acknowledge them for this service.
I went to the internet and searched for different state military license plates out there and found some of these images to help you spot more quickly these special plates.  These are special.  If it weren't for these special plates (due to the special people who earned them) we would live in a far different world than we do today.
Yes, I know our world is very scary these days, but we are still far more free than other countries and it is because of these brave men and women and the families that love and support them.  Check out some of these images courtesy of 

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Crazy turn of events

Back in June/July time period I received a picture of many Marines by a white bus.  The return address was Hawaii. I had no clue who it was from. I went back to some military service members we sent home through Wings for Our Troops and nothing added up. I kept this picture with the envelope and the note that simply said "Sending you our LOVE & Prayers Every day ❤️ Love, Joe & Kim (last name blurring for their protection). The last name did not match up to anyone we sent home. I would go back and look at this picture many times since then to try and figure out who it was and nothing. Today, November 12, 2015 I receive a message from "Joe" asking if I received the picture of "Wade". I immediately said no. Several messages back and forth and suddenly I remember this picture and envelope with the vague note and realize maybe that's what he is referring to. He asks me to send him a picture of the picture and he could point him out to me. Of course I do and he sends back a pictures with a white circle around Chad! Of course I immediately begin to cry because I can't make out my own son, but once he points him out I recognize his stand and jaw line and the flashlight in his hand that broke his tooth just before loading the white bus. Again, I begin to cry but this time because I am so grateful for this little treasure. He then share a precious funny story of the first time he and Chad met and then their last encounter. I love the stories. I love the pictures. So, thank you Joe & Kim!  You have done this momma bear's heart some major good today. God Bless you both.