Chance is home!! We are so excited to have him back!
We had a great time at the casino. Won some and lost some and managed to come home with some of the money we brought to gamble with. On Tuesday, at one point, I was up $150 over what I brought, but kept playing. LOL! Hubby said I should call the 1-800 gambling hotline. I am not THAT bad. I would never gamble more than I brought to leave there. And I saved the money specifically for the trip. We lost a total of around $300, but we didn't pay for our room for 2 days and didn't pay for food for 3 days. So, I think $300 is quite a reasonable amount to spend for a nice 3 day vacation.
Yesterday, we drove to DeRidder, checked in and relaxed for a couple of hours, then headed to Fort Polk for the Welcome Home Ceremony. It was so crowded! It was wonderful to see so many people there to welcome our soldiers home. I managed to snag some seats while Hubby went to the bathroom and when he came back, Meredith and the kids' mom were with him, so we scooted over and had them join us. Otherwise, they might have ended up standing. I sat next to the kids' mom...Hubby sat right behind us in the bleachers. I would have preferred to have Hubby sitting next to me, but like I said, it was really crowded. And we got there an hour early!
Hubby did NOT speak to his ex, but he did not make it really obvious, so it was not uncomfortable. He still does not like his ex. Who does? But he is never rude to her. She and I get along as I have always tried to do what is best for our kids and we share some wonderful kids.
When the soldiers started coming it, there was wild applause and yelling. There were SO MANY soldiers in the group that the applause would die down a little, then start back up. I clapped the entire time. I figured every soldier deserved applause. Plus, I used to go to the ballet a lot, so had experience clapping even after your hands are aching. :-)
After a prayer and playing the Star Spangled Banner, someone said a few words and the soldiers sang "Rolling Along." It was so moving to hear all those soldiers singing! Then the soldiers were released and it was pandemonium. But we spotted Chance and waved and he spotted us and headed our way.
Meredith headed down out of the bleachers and through the crowd and I headed down too. I had planned to hang back and let his mom, Hubby and Mere to get in the first hugs, but his mom and Hubby did not head down fast enough. So Mere hugged him, crying her eyes out. I got to them a few seconds later and got my hug. And I, who rarely cry over anything, was crying as well. I thought his mom and Hubby were right behind me, but they were not, so we guided Chance back to where they were. More hugs and more tears, of course. I meant to get a pic of Hubby hugging Chance, but my camera was in Hubby's pocket, so that didn't happen. But we were taking a lot of pics as did Chance's mom and Mere and we will snag them off of each other's Facebook, so we got some great pics.
One of the first things Chance said to Hubby was "I'm sorry we are so late getting in." LOL! We told him that there was no need to apologize. He walked out to our cars...his mom had parked right behind us which was amazing considering how many cars were there. I got this pic. Doesn't Hubby look happy?