Deployment Year To Do

Posted on: Tuesday, April 26, 2011

I'm going to be moving back to State College in a couple weeks, and moving in to my apartment at Toftrees around the beginning of June. I was always planning on taking a year off before grad school business, I just thought I'd be spending that year getting married and moving down to Texas, finally being in the same place as Kyle, and going from there. Sigh. Shortly after our December engagement however (like a week) Kyle found out he'd be deployed in May, just as I would be finishing school and this great year was supposed to start. So those pleasant thoughts were short lived and I had a miserable few days. But anyway, I decided to spend the year in State College, as it didn't make sense for me to head down to Texas and spend more time down there than necessary (we're not huge fans of the state), and I figured I'd be more comfortable in SC instead of staying in Pittsburgh. Here's some things I'd like to do during the year.

1) Take the GRE and apply to grad school. I've only been really looking at Texas schools, because Kyle seems pretty sure he'll be stuck at Fort Hood for the remainder of his three year contract once he returns from deployment, taking us to December 2013. Kyle and I don't have any desire to stay in Texas longer than we need to, but if I get into grad school there that may be the case. I've been looking into UT Austin, Texas A&M, and Baylor; they're all relatively near to Fort Hood (closest is 1 hour 12 minutes, furthest is about 2 hours). We still may either not be able to live together, or will split the difference and both have to commute from somewhere in between. This is really frustrating for obvious reasons, but we'll see what happens. I'd like to go into something involving health education/health psychology/public policy/social work. It's hard to make these plans having to keep the uncertain, change-on-a-whim lifestyle of the military in mind. And we're just not very fond of Texas; Austin could be bearable, I think, there's a river through town and trees...

2) Learn to Run. Usually my diseased knees prevent me from pushing anything too hard, but I do enjoy working out, and running is something I haven't really been able to do but wished I could. I've got the shoes, and Toftrees will be a nice area to run about, so we'll see how it goes.

3) Get a Job. Well obviously. I'm currently in the process of looking. I'd like something to do with to what I spent studying for four years (all of this is very obvious and I feel silly writing it out), but we'll see what's available in the world of psychology in State College. At the very least I can work elsewhere and volunteer on the side to stay involved.

4) Get a cat or two. Ahead of schedule on this one!

5) Make a Reception Happen. If you'll remember my reception ideas post from before, I hadn't quite gotten back into planning mode since we got married so quickly/not in a normal way. I'm still not really there, but I think once I'm settled in at my new place it'll be easier to start visiting stores and getting samples of things and whatnot. I'd really like to set a date down soon, but I think I've told you enough times how the Army does not mix well with setting important dates (we still don't know what exact day he'll be leaving). We assume Kyle's year long deployment will bring him back sometime in May or early June, and that he'll have a decent amount of time off afterwards.

6) Go on a Trip. Most of my travel time and money for the last few years has been spent on visiting Kyle. But since he'll be in Iraq for the year, I'll be unable to visit him, freeing up some time to visit other people elsewhere! Emma will be going to school up in Boston, and my friend Allie is also from up there, good reasons for me to visit to New England. I've been all around the country (my family went on a road trip from PA to CA and back in '02), but never up in that region and I've wanted to check it out. I'd also like to visit my family up in Canada! I haven't seen them since Kyle and I went up in the summer of 2009. It's always a fun time, and my cousins are growing up fast. Kyle and I were also considering going on a honeymoon of sorts during his two weeks of R&R that he'll get sometime in deployment. We don't know when his break will be, or if we'll get any notice though, so such a trip may not be possible. I think my top choice would be New Zealand.

I guess those are the main things for now, nothing too out of the ordinary for a recent graduate I think.

- From the desk of Mrs. Sarah McPherson


  1. 7) Also cooking! I want to expand and explore more the world of cooking. What usually stops me is lack of motivation to trek out to the grocery store sans vehicle, also lack of proper supplies/cookware, and cooking for one does not inspire much creativity/effort. But I'm a wife now, and I'd like to acquire some skills and recipes to impress Kyle when he gets back. Not even in a - I'm the wife so I'll be the one cooking- sort of way; we both like to cook, so we'll be doing it together. I'll just be the one to get the ball rolling, as motel living and going off to war do not make for the best cooking opportunities for Kyle. :)


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