Sunday, October 25, 2015

Balls and the Dixie Chicken...what?!

The Texas A&M Corps of Cadets' Navy and Marine ROTC battalion birthday ball was last night!
(Our official birthday is November 10th, but we celebrated early)
I was skeptical about going because when we were stationed in Boston, the midshipmen balls felt like I was at a high school prom.
These young college students are barely out of high school in ROTC.
The only formal event most of them have ever attended is their prom.
The students in Boston didn't seem the exude as much pride as actual Marines and Sailors do during our birthday celebration either.
In Boston, I thought the Marine birthday ball was lame, and I hated that it didn't quite celebrate the Marine Corps' birthday alone.
It was more focused on the Navy birthday, and it took away from the Marine tradition of celebrating our own.

Texas A&M's Corps of Cadets did NOT disappoint!
They paid homage to the Navy, and gave the Marine Corps the same amount (if not more) of respect.
It was held at the the College Station Hilton, and I must admit that it was one of my more memorable balls.

Here are 3 things that I noticed, however, as a 31 year old woman at a formal event at Texas A&M surrounded by young impressionable cadets and their dates.

*I forget how self conscious I was as a young woman between the ages of 16-22(ish). These gorgeous (and adorable) young college girls were wearing their beautiful ball gowns, hunched over, arms crossed, looking super self conscious of their bodies. I wanted to pull them all aside and tell them all how gorgeous they looked, and to own their bodies. I wanted to tell them that once you get older and have children and have a life and a mortgage and bills and blah blah's a lot more work to look as fabulous as they do now. "UNCROSS YOURS ARMS, STAND UP STRAIGHT, AND ACT LIKE YOU OWN THAT ROOM!"

*Since we are in the south, and the "southern gentleman" is still very prevalent here at TAMU, it was nice to have so many handsome young cadets being so polite to all the women. But for the love of God, please stop calling me "ma'am". I'm not an Officer in the Marine Corps, and I sure as hell am not old (yet). If you really want to be formal, you can call me "Ms. Romer"....not "Mrs." because "Mrs." sounds old. I overheard a couple cadets refer to me as "Gunny's wife". That's fine, but I prefer to be called by my name or "Ms. Romer". I have a pretty spectacular identity beyond being just "the Gunny's wife". 

*When you're with a date, and start talking to someone.....PLEASE...introduce your date to who you're talking to. It is so awkward to be just standing there not knowing who you're talking to. Yes, Nick is guilty of this (but he's gotten better). Before you start a deep conversation with someone, how about a, "oh hey, before I forget...this is my date/wife/husband/boyfriend/girlfriend/fling so and so. A lot of these young midshipmen seem to have forgotten the art of introducing their date. I don't know how many times, I had to ask the date of a cadet, "oh, and who are you again?"

The ball was a fabulous event, and I had an absolute blast. 
I was so impressed by the professionalism of all the cadets (of course because they are Aggies), and I was so impressed by how smoothly the event ran.
I am definitely looking forward to a few more events and balls with the TAMU Corps of Cadets.

Cocktail hour!
My dress is a Camila and Marc dress!

See the bartenders photobombing our pic?

Colonel Bright, his wife Jill, and Nick.
I just want to add how awesome the Colonel and his wife are.
Colonel Bright is the "head honcho"/professor of Naval science for the entire Texas A&M Navy and Marine Corps battalion.
He has an impressive resume in the Corps, and yet when you meet him and his family, they are the most humble people you'll ever met.
They are EXTREMELY personable, and Colonel Bright has a way to truly make the Marines that he is in charge of really feel important.
A lot of high ranking Officers and Senior SNCO's in the Corps lose that sense of connection with their jr. Marines, and can oftentimes seem disconnected with them.
But, I absolutely love his style of leadership. 
He is a "take no crap", "show up and perform" kinda guy.
I can only assume that this attitude is the reason for his success as a leader of Marines.

Is this cake not AMAZING?!

The guest of honor was Colonel Russo.
Colonel Russo was Nick's CO at 5/11 and his XO when he was a drill instructor.
Colonel Russo had a small part in Nick's acceptance into the MECEP program to come to A&M with his way too generous recommendation letter for Nick.
He's a Notre Dame grad (we all make mistakes), but his speech at the ball for the cadets was inspiring, heartfelt, and motivating.
I could tell he had so much more to say to them, but was trying to "keep it short".
His advice as a senior Officer is gold, and the cadets are extremely lucky to have gotten to get a "little" piece of him.
I promise you that he received a warm Aggie welcome, and was embraced by the amazing Aggies.

Me and Capt Mueller!
She is one of the MOI's (Marine Officer Instructor), and a prior enlisted aviation ordnance technician!!! 

That handsome guy in the tux is Nick's advisor for Ag Leadership (his major).

This smoking hot woman in the red dress is my friend Carley!
Her husband and Nick are the only two Gunny's in the MECEP program!

After the ball, we all headed to the legendary Dixie Chicken for a nightcap, conversation, and company.
We had an absolute blast!

You know an awesome CO, when he decides to come out with us to the Chicken to have a beer, and hang out!

The 240th Birthday ball was an absolute blast.
I couldn't have asked for a better group of Aggies to celebrate it with!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Bama Weekend

Let's just get it out there...
The big elephant in the room....

The Aggies lost their first game of the season.
They deserved the loss, because they played like crap. 
A football game comes down to "who played better for that one game."
Let's face it, we've seen plenty of underdogs win in sports.
And for this weekend's game, Alabama just played better, and WE made a TON of silly mistakes.
Was I crushed?
Did it ruin my weekend?

It's a game, and there's plenty of other games left this season.
I am still a die hard Aggie fan.
  We had a few Bama fans stop by our tailgate yesterday.
We gave them a friendly "Aggie howdy" and invited them in to eat some BBQ and have drinks. 
We wished them a happy stay in Aggieland, and football was not mentioned ONCE.
 Even though we lost, I know those Bama fans and Alabamans went home thinking, "man, those Aggies and those Texans are some really friendly folks." 
I'd rather be part of a classy and friendly school than any other school in the nation. 
They ain't lyin' when they say that A&M is the friendliest campus in the nation. 
Just ask my former Bama fan and Bama HUSBAND!

We had a blast at our tailgate, and I am still proud as hell to be an Aggie!

The reviewing Officer for this game was Marine Major General Miller.
He's an Aggie (class of '79), and if you google him, his resume as a Marine is pretty damn badass!!!!
We got to have dinner with him and his wife the night before the game at C&J's BBQ in Bryan.
His wife's one request while visiting Texas again was to have some delicious Texas style BBQ.
He was so personable and laid back.
He was a a true Aggie gentleman.
We felt like we were having dinner with an old friend!
Such an honor to get to have spent time with him and his wife!

And some random photos I took with the fancy camera.
I've been pretty good about getting it out every once in a while!

Typical all over his face....sweaty....and just goofy.

Eat your heart out Tyra Banks....
This girl can "smize" better than any of your top models!

Hope everyone had a fabulous weekend!
Here's to another awesome week!

Thursday, October 15, 2015



I have been slacking on this blog thing because my family has been sick.
It started with Mattis, then to Dannika, then Nick...
Just when I thought I would escape hit me this past weekend.
I went to the doc, got a Z-pack (basically the best antibiotic ever invented!), and have been resting comfortably all weekend. 
Thank GOODNESS this weekend was a bye week for Aggie football!
We needed to rest up for the big Bama game this weekend!
Nick and I will not be attending the game...
Because we didn't want to spend 200 dollars a ticket for the nosebleed section, and because we didn't want to camp out at 2AM Monday morning to pull tickets......seriously.
But we will be hosting the Semper Fi Society tailgate!
I actually have more fun at the tailgate than I do at the game sometimes.
Thank goodness my parents are coming up this weekend to watch the kids so that Nick and I can have a kid free tailgate (a first for us!).
We did manage to get out of the house on Saturday when I felt up to it to attend Dannika's school's annual "Falconpalooza" (just a flashier name for Fall fest).

The Aggie dance team performed!
These two little girls were over the moon to get to take a picture with them!

The best principal ever!
Falconpalooza is her school's biggest fundraising event of the year, and it has always been a lot of fun.
Even with me being a little under the weather, we still managed to stay the entire 4 hours, and we all had an amazing time!

Time to gear up and get ready for some Aggie football this weekend!!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Texas Fall, Y'all

I think our weekend filled with tailgates, football games, and church took a toll on my oldest.
This is day 2 of D being home sick from school.
Just a fever.
No other symptoms.
Probably "viral".
And like every doctor in America will tell me, "You just have to let it run its' course."
When the Tylenol/Motrin regimen kicks in, she's back to her normal self.
It's when that fever creeps back up that she's just miserable.
Praying she is feeling better by tomorrow!
She is really missing school!

The weather finally feels like a "Texas Fall".

A "Texas Fall" is:
 //When the leaves are turning brown (cause leaves in TX don't turn those pretty reds, oranges, and yellows you see up north).//

//The temperatures are in the 80's instead of the 90s and 100s.//

//You can catch people wearing jeans...but with sandals and tank tops.//

I'm not one of those women you see on Facebook talking about my obsession with Fall.
I actually dislike Fall and Winter.
Everything is dying...
The daylight doesn't last long...
The only "fally" thing I like is pumpkin spice lattes.

I also like sitting on our back porch deck, but of course, once daylight savings time hits, my late afternoons lounging on the deck are gone...
Boo to Fall!

After church on Sunday, D went to a friend's house to play, and Nick took Mattis on the back porch to play while he studied.
I got some "me" time, and managed to sneak outside to capture a few pics of them.
Playing with daddy's hunting arrows.
I can never get this kid to smile for the camera. He likes to give me faces like this.
I finally offered him a snack, and this is the face I got. Silly boy.
 I love his dirt covered face in these photos.
It truly captures my Mattis in his every day element.

And my handsome guy studying away.
 Hope everyone is enjoying their week so far!

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Aggie Bound

If you don't follow me on social media, the cat's been out of the bag for about a week now...

I'm transferring to Texas A&M starting in the Spring!
I mean, I've always been an Aggie, but I get to make it official and have an Aggie diploma on the wall along with that sweet shiny bling on my right ring finger!
Nick and I are starting a legacy.
Nick is the first in his family to attend college!
I'm literally like the last college eligible "Kim family member" (in this generation) to go to college...ironically, I'm also the oldest.
Anyway, I'm over the moon excited.
If you get the fortunate experience of growing up in Aggieland, you either grow up drinking the "maroon kool-aid", or you end up pouring it down the drain.
By the time I was a senior in high school, I was one of those who poured that kool-aid down the drain.
I said "screw this", and I became a United States Marine.
My younger sister also had enough of this "Aggie cult", and she ended up going to University of Texas to be a Longhorn (go ahead and hiss).

It wasn't until I joined the Corps, moved out to California to start my adventure that I became fiercely homesick.
The one thing that gave me comfort was watching the Aggies play football on TV in the Fall.
It made me miss home, and it made me miss being around "Aggie culture".
I was fortunate enough to have some amazing leaders as a young Marine who pushed me to do off duty education when I wasn't deployed.
As a young LCpl, I would work from 6am until 6pm, eat chow, get out of uniform, and go to a local community college to take classes.
But of course with deployments and training, I stopped taking classes.
At the end of my tour on recruiting duty, I had a conversation with my Capt about my hopes for finishing college.
I told him my dream was to finish my degree at Texas A&M, and that I was willing to wait until Nick retired to do so.
That's how bad I wanted an Aggie ring.

Funny how God works sometimes, because instead of waiting until I was 40 to come back to CS to go to my dream school, HE gave us such a unique and once in a lifetime opportunity to come back to my hometown so that my husband could come to school here!
I knew this was also MY chance to pursue my dream.
So here I am today...
I'm a 4.0 student on the Dean's list at Central Texas College, and I get to go to that big maroon campus outside my front door in the spring!

We attended the Aggie vs. Mississippi St game last night where the Aggies BTHO Mississippi St, 30-17!!!
That makes us 5-0 this season!!!!
It makes it really exciting that they are doing so well since this is the grand opening season of the brand new Kyle Field!

I was getting a little tired of wearing maroon every weekend, so I switched it up yesterday, and went with white and maroon accents.

Tailgate fashion sure has evolved over the years.
Gone are the days of just throwing on a cotton "Maroon Out" tshirt, and heading to the game.
For the fashion enthusiasts, gameday/tailgate fashion has become a fun way to dress in your school colors while looking chic.

The cutest little tailgater in Aggieland!
This kid would scream, "I see Aggies!!! Aggies!!!" whenever he saw a sea of Aggies wearing maroon. 
He also refuses to go to bed in anything but a maroon shirt....
I think we've already brainwashed this future Aggie...

Obligatory family photo in front of Kyle Field.

They say "the bigger the bow, the bigger the fan"....right?!
I'm a southern mama who loves little southern girls in big bows....what can I say?

Can't quite make the "Gig 'em" thumb...but we'll take "#1" for now!

The little girls.

One of my favorite traditions is watching the Corps of Cadets march into Kyle Field on game day.
They have to coolest cadence (and this is coming from a Marine, y'all!).

Nick has officially drank the "maroon kool-aid"...
Look at the grin on his face.

The largest stadium in the SEC, baby!!

We found a couple midshipmen, and some other ROTC Corps of Cadets guys for a quick photo op with D!

Aggie nachos...
They were as delicious as it looks...
Oh, and I DID go to the gym in the morning just so I could indulge in these cheesy goodness....

We had such a blast at the game!!!
This next weekend is a bye week for the Aggies, so we get a break before the next big game against the Tide (Alabama).
We are planning a huge tailgate for that game, and we're all really excited!

Thanks for all the well wishes and congrats!
Thanks, and Gig 'Em!