Continuing on the C-130

Today is one of those truly bittersweet days in life.

For the last five years I have had the distinct pleasure of flying on the C-130H.  It is an historic aircraft that has played an important role in not only the wars of the past 60 years, but the humanitarian disasters that have occurred all over the world.

To be honest, when I first started nav school I wanted nothing to do with the C-130, but that was out of complete ignorance.  It did not take me long to fall in love with her, which is why I am so sad to see her leave the active duty Air Force forever.

It truly is the end of an era and a shift in the Air Force that means things will never be the same.  While I have my own biased views, there is no denying the advances in technology that have made this shift possible.

Swearing In

Fortunately, my own selfish desires will continue to be satisfied as I am now a member of the 192nd Airlift Squadron in the Nevada Air National Guard.  Just going in today and seeing those beautiful birds out on the ramp brought joy to my heart.  I haven’t flown in over a month so I am dying to get back up in the air.

I try not to write about it too often here, but the depths of my passion for this plane and her mission can be found on my other blog, aviationguy.com.

 

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I Need More Places Like the Temple in My Life

For those of you not familiar with Mormons, we generally have two types of buildings where we go to worship.  We have our meetinghouses where we go on Sundays to worship and even during the week for other activities and events.  They range from large beautiful buildings to rooms rented over marijuana shops (yes it really was).

These buildings are open to anyone and everyone who would like to worship with us, and they are important to our worship and happiness.  They are where the vast majority of our services take place and there are thousands all over the world.

The other buildings that we utilize for worshiping are temples.  These buildings are much less common (only 157 currently operating in the world), and hold a more sacred place in our worship.  They are the place where we go to be sealed together for eternity as well as perform ordinances for those who have already passed away.

If you would like to learn more about the differences please let me know and I would love to explain more.  For the purposes of this post, those descriptions should suffice.

I had the opportunity to go to the temple here in Reno with my wife today and it was such a nice experience.  It was a bit rushed getting there, and we almost didn’t make it, as is often the case when you try and do something you know to be right, but we did, and it was wonderful.

There is such an overwhelming peace that comes with going to the temple and being surrounded by the spirit.  The busier my life gets the more important it is for me to take time for these spiritually rejuvenating events.  It only took a couple of hours, but it gave me time to refocus myself on what is most important in life and where I need to be putting my effort.

While temples are special, it is vitally important for us to find other places where we can also find peace and comfort and to commune with God.  Many prophets in the past would go into the mountains to find such places.  While we don’t need to have the types of experiences like Moses did, it is important for us to find places where we can clear our mind and refresh ourselves spiritually, whether we are religious or not.

For most of my life the mountains were always that place for me.  I could just sit up in the trees or around a fire and do nothing for hours.  It was always an amazing way to clear my mind and refocus whatever was going on in my life.

Once I stopped living in the mountains, the beach became that place for me, and unfortunately as time went on I kind of stopped looking for those places.  Thankfully, God has brought me back to the mountains where I can again go to find peace, like I did earlier this week when I went fishing.

Life is full of important stressful things that we need to do, but few things will reap more benefits than taking the time to be still, relax, and reset.  We all need that on occasion, but it is often the first thing we give up when life gets busy.

I was in a Magic Show With my Son

I don’t know why I am such a bump on a lot sometimes.  It is not uncommon for my wife to ask if I want to so something and I just sort of shrug my shoulders.

Fortunately, she is not easily deterred and today we went to a little free magic show at the library.  I don’t remember the guy’s name but apparently he has been on tv numerous times and was the magic world champion twice.

The show was only about an hour long and he kept it all pretty simple, but it was so much fun.  He was funny and engaging and he let me and my son be part of the show.

We both went up together and got to be part of a trick.  I normally habe no idea what magicians are doing, but today for the trick I was a part of I actually saw what was happening for almost the while trick.

Easton on the other hand had no idea and loved every minute of it.  He was laughing and bouncing around and having a great time.  It is always so great to see your kids that happy.

It makes me wonder how many of these opportunities I have missed because I was being a bump on a lot.  I’m sure it will happen again at some point, but for now I will enjoy how awesome it was to see so much joy in my son’s face.

A Day Spent Fishing is Never Wasted

With my transition to a new job I have had a little time off work.  It has been great because I have gotten to spend a lot of time with my family and help get settled in to the house.  

I go back to work next week, so I decided today I would take a little time for myself and go fishing.  Fortunately, there is a river that is only a few miles from our house.


It was so nice to just relax away the day on the river enjoying the beauty all around me.  The fishing itself was not very fruitful but that’s okay.  

It is Always important to take a little time for yourself when you have the chance.  I’m glad I was able to usr that time for some fishing.

Running at Altitude is Tough

I went running for the first time in my new hometown today and it was a bit harder than I am used to courtesy of the altitude.  For the last two years I have lived at essentially sea level so now to run at almost 5,000 feet it is a bit different.

I noticed pretty quickly that there was not as much oxygen, but it still felt great to get in a run.  It is also awesome that there is a trail right behind my house that leads up into the hills.  While that is more challenging, it is much better than just running on a track or boring treadmill.

With everything drying up for the winter it was all pretty dry, but that is apparently not a bad thing.  While the air is thinner here, it is also much dryer which actually helped a lot.

My wife had told me it was about a mile and a half to the library by way of the trail but as I got to the library I figured there was no way that was right.  Before I left Japan I was doing a mile and a half in about 13 minutes, but somehow I had run that distance mostly uphill in only 14 minutes.  

When I got home I tried to verify the distance and my wife was wrong.  It wasn’t 1.5 miles, it was more like 1.6.  I know th8s is nothing to you big runners, but for me that was a big deal.  To congratulate myself I ran back in about 12 minutes, but that was downhill.

The longer I am here the more happy I am to be here. Everything is slowly falling into place and we are all getting settled in.  I have really enjoyed all of the places we have lived in the last ten years but this is probably the most I have felt at home.

My Son is Starting to Warm Up to Me

Adoption is such an incredible journey.  You experience some of the most amazing highs and some incredibly frustrating lows.

Bonding with my son is really important, but the reality of our lives made that really hard.  We just celebrated six months since Ty joined our family and of that six months I was not with him for about three months of that.  

As you would imagine that did not help our bonding much.  It has been awesome to see how close he is with his mom, but it also makes me a little jealous too.  

I haven’t really had a lot of time with just him and I, but today we got some time just the two of us and it was really great.

He climbed up on my lap and brought me books to read, including one that was actually just a handwriting book.  It was fun to just sit together and be alone.

I know that there is a long way to go here in our relationship, but it is so awesome to have these moments and see that we are making progress.

Normal Days are Great

Nothing incredibly special happened today.  The kids went back to school after a week off and the wife and I took care of a few things around the house and a few errands.  

With as busy and stressful as life often gets it is really nice to have a day with nothing crazy happening, but at the same time still getting stuff done.  

I am excited to go back to work next week because it means I am closer to flying again, but for now I will enjoy the extra time I have with the wife and kids living the simple life.