Saturday, November 28, 2009

A Day With Her Cousins

Merrilee had a terrific time this morning! Her cousins Doug, Kadie and Jordan took her to the Festival of Trees.

Merrilee told me she loved all the lights and trains, but she was a little scared of "Santa Closet." That's what she's been calling him lately.

When Doug stopped by to pick up Jordan, Leah snapped these photos. Leah really is an excellent and talented photographer!!!

Friday, November 27, 2009

A Very Happy Child...

Sometimes, and I mean sometimes, it doesn't take much to make Merrilee happy.

Today, for instance, she was the picture of happiness.

It was all about sitting in the laundry basket, with her blue blanket, wearing her Crocs, and eating Cheez-its.

Merrilee says..."This is the life!"

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Merrilee missed mommy this Thanksgiving. Normally mommy would cook the big family dinner. But this year, with mommy in a far away land, the rest of the family left behind went out to dinner. Merrilee wore a little panda shirt outfit that was a gift from mommy before mommy deployed overseas...

Merrilee loves her cousins Doug and Kadie. They are among Merrilee's favorite babysitters. We think she likes Doug so much because he is so willing to act HER age and play with her...

And cousin Kadie helped put Merrilee's hair in a pretty pony tail for dinner...

Merrilee missed mommy but was proud to show off the outfit from mommy...

And this year, the holiday novelty at Hallmark is this flashing house that plays holiday tunes. You can buy as many as you want and connect them together, and they all flash their lights to the music. Merrilee decided they look good on the TV stand in front of the DVD player...

Merrilee is already anxiously awaiting the visit from the chubby bearded man in the red suit!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Mail....

Merrilee has been talking with mommy on Skype. Not everyday, but about once a week.

With the holidays coming up, it takes a little while for mail to reach mommy.

But, if you want to send a card, the address is:

Lt Col Beth Miller
Unit 2034, Box 34,
APO AE 09870

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Don't Bother Me...I'm Eating

Merrilee loves her mommy.

But she reminds daddy all the time not to bother her while she's eating.

Here's an example...


Before mommy left for her deployment, she bough Merrilee a GIANT Disney coloring book.

And daddy bought Merrilee a huge pyramid of crayons.

So now, Merrilee is spending a lot of time coloring at night.

One thing we noticed...she colors with her right hand. Merrilee does some things left-handed, and some things right-handed. It looks like she goes with the right for coloring...

Sunday, November 15, 2009


Merrilee's mommy arrived safe and sound at her deployment destination.

Merrilee got to see her and talk to her today on Skype. All things considered, Merrilee says mommy looked pretty good. Mommy doesn't have the internet in her room, but there are some common areas where she can get on line to check email, Facebook, and Skype.

The funny thing was, today, the background was a Subway. Beth says they even have $5 foot longs there.

If you would like to send a card, her address is:

Lt Col Beth Miller, MNF-I, Unit 2034, Box 34, APO AE 09870

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Goodbye Mommy...Be Safe

Merrilee was a real trooper as she trekked to BWI Airport on Veterans' Day evening, to send mommy off on a six-month deployment to the big sandbox. Both mommy and Merrilee held up well.

Merrilee has always loved the airport. She loves all the activity and she loves airplanes. But tonight, she was focused on mommy and telling her "I love you" and "Goodbye mom..."

There were hundreds of people near the international terminal, outside the Air Mobility Command gate. They were there on this Veterans' Day evening to greet servicemen and women who were returning from overseas deployments. One of the greeters was Gary Smith. Gary went to high school with Merrilee's dad, and he attends Merrilee's church.

These greeters are all a part of Operation Welcome Home. After Vietnam, America learned a lesson. You may not like the mission or the war, but you ALWAYS honor those who do their duty and who serve their country.

Operation Welcome Home is just one small way America expresses its thanks. We watched as these military members were greeted with cheers, waving flags, signs, and welcome home "goodie bags" and to a person, they shook hands, high-fived the crowd, and beamed back some smiles of their own. Merrilee wanted to be a part of the action....

You can join Operation Welcome Home, or make a donation. If you'd like to go to the airport to greet the members of the military, OWH's web site has all the information. Here's a little more video to give you a sense of the crowd and the reception these service people get...

Just before we parted, one lady from Operation Welcome Home went up to Merrilee's mommy. She said, "We are proud of you and your service. Please be safe."

That is our prayer -- that all of these people separated from their families, off in distant lands, stay safe and return home safely very soon. And that includes our friend, Billy, who has been away in Afghanistan. We hope he gets to see his precious daughter, Kassidy, very soon.