Thursday, December 8, 2011

Update from Sunny SoCal

So once again I’m coming to you all after way to long, cause I really do suck at this whole thing.   LOL I decided just to fill you all in on where I am now and where I am about to head and not try to catch up on the details of the past 4 months.  So here we go! Lol
Since last time I’ve graduated ‘A’ school, received orders and now I’m one test away from graduating my ‘C’ school and heading to my permit duty station (ie where I will be spending the next 4 years).   In a little over a week I will fly home for a quick Christmas break before I start my long, long drive from San Diego California to (drum roll please) Norfolk Virginia!   That’s right I’m going to one of the two places I didn’t really want to go, but hey at least I’m dragging some of my best friends with me lol.  As far as orders go I am on the USS Eisenhower (CVN69), a carrier.  I am, or soon will be, an ISM (information systems maintenance) ET, and I have put on my 3rd class Petty officer pin.  For the past 3 month I have been in sunny San Diego, which was a major blessing to get to be close to my family and friends from college after being so far away for so long last year and over the holidays.
So that catches you all up on my “navy life” as far as my everyday life things have really been difficult.  My family is going through some hard times right now, and it has started to take its toll on me.   A huge part of me wants to use this blog to share these struggles, but I think I am going to have to tackle that tomorrow… Those of you who know me best know that I am a pretty private person, and I am really trying to work on being more open person, to share my struggles with those around me.  So hope you have a great day, and I will check in again soon.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Its been ages I'm sorry.

OK so I royally suck at this whole blog thing, I swear I think about it all the time but then I decided to go to bed instead because sleep well it sounds better at midnight then typing.  When I last checked in it was just a week or two out of boot camp, so life has definitely settled into a much more into a predictable rhythm.  I started school about the second week of November and hope to be out of ATT (Advanced Technical Training) by the end of February at the latest.  From there its on to A school which super far away.... way across the road in the next building that is lol.  Then figures crossed I will head to San Diego for my last bit of training in the land of sun.

But as for the here and now; school keeps me pretty busy.  We are in self taught group paced classes (basically I stare at a blue computer screen that has this technical language that I'm suppose to teach myself, while trying to keep up with the geniuses in my class).  Classes run Monday through Friday with weekends off, and work days (days we stand watch in our barracks) every 4 days.   For people like me who learn a little bit slower there is "open learning"  essentially study hall that is offered after school gets out.  I spend alot of my time there.  My days begin at approximately 0430 and end around 2300/2400, about 6 to 10 hours a day is spent in school, and the rest of it is free time (unless its a working day).   The weather is cold to freezing and we have about 6 inches of beautiful snow.  I miss the sunshine, clear days are rare and when we have them it means its more on the freezing end of the temperature scales which means you bundle up a whole lot more and kinda avoid being outside. 

Free time is spent between the galley, the Samuel Adams Club, the gym (more would be better) and and the occasional nap, and on weekends I head out to Chicago or any other place that is not on this base when ever possible.  I do love the city. Its huge with beautiful buildings and amazing site's and full of friendly mid-west people (now if I could just find a way to stop the wind lol).  I even have a few places that my group of friends and I could soon be called regulars at. Yesterday I jumped the train and did a little exploring by myself, discovered what might be my "need to get away from everyone" spot; cute stores, good food, Boards and Barns and Noble and a movie theatre.  Oh yeah I didn't mention that, right off base just across the street is the depot for the train to take you into the heart of Chicago, its just about an hour ride, and cost like 5 bucks round trip hard to beat that.  Plus as military we can get into a ton of the city attractions for FREE!!!!  I've already been the the Sears tower tower twice (oh wait they renamed it the Willis tower but everyone will tell you that it will always be the Sears)  A few of us actually tried to climb to the top all 103 stories of it but they wouldn't let us..... something about the stairs being for emergencies only, we promised if the alarm got pulled we would turn around and head back but that didn't seem to convince them.  Tomorrow we are headed in to watch the Seattle and Chicago game, wearing Seattle colors and jerseys.  I fully expect to be yelled at :)


The last duty(work) day before stand down ( think Christmas break) was spent making Ginger bread houses, or in my case ginger bread sleigh. For two weeks over Christmas I got to fly back to Boise and spend time with my family and friends, it was just what I needed. A little time to catch up on some sleep, some TV and some of normal life.  Have to say I was blessed girl.  Mom bought me a new to me Burton board and boots, I went snow boarding on Christmas, a week spent with my best friend Erica and her family ( my nieces whom I love and miss dearly) and last but not least I finally got my first tattoo, the tattoo that I have been planning for about ten years now.

Its on my Left side upper Rib cage, the lettering
spells out Peace in Hebrew.

well that about you all up to date, in a nut shall at least. I hope you all are doing well and please let me know if you have any questions or if there is anything in particular you want to know.

lots of love, Erin.

View from sears tower during the day

Sears tower at night

Friday, October 29, 2010

Missing in action

Hey there everyone, sorry Its been forever since my last post but I am still without my own personal laptop (hopefully resolved this weekend though!)  But I just wanted to stop in and say thank you sooooooo much for all the support while I was away in boot camp.  I am over at  my training sight still waiting for my school to start, I have been told to expect to stay here longer then originally expects so I guess that means more time to explore Illinois, Chicago and the surrounding area.  Hopefully I will have a much longer update later this week with pic's and everything.  Much Love to you all.  Happy Fall :)

Friday, October 1, 2010

Letter #3

Hello Everyone!  So we are getting close to the end of boot camp, just three/well actually 2 1/2 weeks of training left.  We just finished "hell week", which other than the fact that we were crazy busy wasn't that bad.  We actually did really well as a division.  We flagged for our drill inspection (marching) which means we earned the right to march without our RDC and sing cadence, which may sound like it's not that big of a deal but I had a hard time not breaking out into a big ass grin the whole time.  We also earned an additional phone call!  No tears this time!
So, next week we start our fire fighting/training and the gas chamber :)/ :( not quite sure how I feel about that part of it.  Then we have battle stations which is like fake ship disaster time and then that is pretty much it, smooth sailing from there... oh and the final PFA, but I am not worried.
So, I said I would talk about some of the characters we have here.  This is definitely a division  from all over the place, and though not everyone gets along we are starting to pull it together at least for drills and lets see one of my favorite males (yes we call them males) is a guy from N. Carolina.  He has a slow southern drawl and calm personality that makes me feel like sitting on the front porch swing with a tall glass of sweet tea and watching the sun go down.
There are two sets of sisters, one easy to tell apart and the other near impossible.  One set is from Northern Idaho (yeah for the Spuds at Sea!)  and I actually will get to hang out with the eldest for the 7 months after boot camp because we are both AECF.  The younger one is headed south, maybe we will run down there when the snow and cold gets to be too much.  The second set of sisters are like one person, they make me smile.
We also have seven people unrelated with the same last name...
There are about 5 of us with the same job grouping as myself and probably 10-15 more that will be at the same A school location which is really cool.  We are all excited about having familiar faces.
A few of our males are nukes and they definitely live up to their reputation, not in a bad way, they actually crack me up.
Oh, my "brother" Yoeman, we'll call them C & C, what can I say about them, they crack me up. I actually feel bad for them sometimes having two headstrong "leader" type females to work with.  But they definitely come along for the ride and are great helping us all work together.  They are quiet, we are loud, they stay calm, we freak out.  It's a good balancing act.
OK, so time is running out and I will write more later.  Lots of love.  Thanks for the letters and prayers and support.


Letter #2

Hey there everyone!  Hope you are all doing great. I'm doing pretty good myself.  It's our fourth week of training (my 5th week here, they don't count the first week!) As it's officially called "Hell Week" and let me tell you, I would have to agree!  For the past two days, we have had 0400 wake-up calls (which means 0315 for me) We had a PT test at 0445AM on Monday, then followed by a 2 hour inspection during which time we get to stand at attention and not flinch or else.  Today we got to go to our first weapons training which was exciting minus all the yelling.  Tomorrow we get to shoot live guns.  Thursday we will take our graduation photos (yes already!), then we have our drill inspection (i.e. marching).  Friday we have our second test.  So needless to say we are going to be crazy busy :)  The best part is that after this week things should go by fast and the end of boot camp will come and I will have my cell phone, lap top and ipod back.  Man how I miss music!
Thank you so very very much for all the love and letters.  Nothing ends a day better than having your name called over and over again at mail call!  So we are starting to run out of time for letter writing, but next letter/update I will tell you all about the characters that surround me.  Until next time.  Much love.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Erin's first letter!

Hi, I am Cara and I'll be Erin's transcriber while she is at the naval training center because she isn't allowed to use the computer.  Erin's first letter arrived in the mail today!  Here it is:

Hello!  Well its Labor Day weekend and I'm finally finding some time to sit down and write a letter.  We are just about three weeks in now and things are finally starting to fall into some sort of routine.
When we first got here it was, "be quiet" and "stay awake".  We hit our beds/racks at like 0300 and were awaken at 0400 (AM military time) and another long day began of paperwork and waiting and staying awake.
Somewhere in the lack of sleep and travel I managed to get the flu, which sucked!  They put me on bed rest for two days (they call it "sick in quarters" or SIQ) and then ("light and limited duty" or LLD) which means that they wouldn't let me march with the division so basically don't get sick at boot camp.
The mornings haven't been that bad actually.  You get up when the lights go on and go to bed when the lights go off. The food is actually pretty good too.  There are close to 80 females in our compartment which brings a little drama sometimes but I think people are starting to work together.  We have both girls and guys in our division.  We are officially 78 strong now.  We have lost a few already and I'm sure we will loose more.  I have been assigned the job of divisional Yoeman or DY which basically means I run the division from the paperwork side of things.  I have to keep all the records for all recruits in my division up to date, make passes for people to go anywhere, sign people out and in, keep the schedule updated and posted and so on and so on.  In the ranking system for recruits it makes me like 3rd in the chain of command.  I have two and a half other Yoeman who work with me and we are always busy!  We go to bed later and wake up before everyone and work while everyone is studying.  The cool thing is I get to walk in front of the pack at grad and I get to wear a pretty officer pin.
The P.T. training hasn't been that hard, I passed all my first test, but next week is going to be hard and I'm going to be stressed about that but the worse is they fire me then I get some sleep!
Well, they are calling for letters now so I'll close this up.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I'm off!!!

Hey there everyone, so I just wanted to post a quick post and let you all know that tomorrow I'm off to Chicago for boot camp, it should be 8 weeks (not counting this week)  I'm a little freaked out and maybe excited, haven't really decided yet but either way I'm off on this great new adventure.  My wonderful friend has kindly offered to update my blog for me while I'm gone through my hand written letters to her, so I really hope to keep anyone fallowing up to date.  Love you all thanks so much for your prayers and well wishes.  Oh and check out my hair Navy Short!!!