This post has been a long time coming.
It’s been easy to say “Oh, I just haven’t had the time” rather than it has been to find the right words.
So instead of trying to find the “right” words, I’m just going to share my story.
Back in September I boarded a plane bound for New Jersey as part of the Duncan Hines Sweet Stars weekend.
My flight to New Jersey departed Baton Rouge with a quick connection in Houston (don’t ask me why you have you fly West in order to go North-East).
Nearly half of the plane was occupied with uniformed men heading to a staging area in Texas.
I knew from the tears at the airport that they were deploying.
On that flight to Houston, I couldn’t help but overhear the conversations of the guys across the aisle from me.
“Your wife take it as hard as mine did”?
“Yeah man, it sure doesn’t get any easier”.
A third soldier chimed in, “I promised mine we’d take the kids to Disney World for Christmas when we get back”.
As in Christmas 2014.
My heart stopped at that moment and tears were forming in my eyes.
The man closest to me caught my glance as I confirmed this wasn’t his first deployment.
Using his hand, he held up the number 3.
3 times he’s said goodbye. 3 times he’s been away from his family for extended amounts of time. 3 times that he’s said yes to the call to continue to protect our freedom.
I chatted with them about where they were from, the trips they were planning once home, how many children they had and what their titles and duties were.
And then I did something that probably made them think I was nuts.
I whipped out my business cards and told them to pass my information on to their wives.
Not so that they could read my blog but if they needed anything, if they wanted to talk, whatever.
I just wanted them to know they weren’t alone.
Once in Houston, after some quick “be safe” exchanges the guys went their way and I boarded the next flight to New Jersey.
And with heart broken text messages to my husband that life just wasn’t fair.
The next day, I met a bunch of foodies at Duncan Hines but one stood out from all the rest.
Toni from Make Bake Celebrate.
A military wife, mom to 3 little people and baker extraordinaire she’s as sweet as her cupcakes.
Her weekend at Duncan Hines was but a brief getaway before she had to pack her home and move her family across the country.
A new post in which to live, new schools for the kids to attend, new friends for her to make….
It was in hearing her story that I knew.
I knew I wanted to do something specifically for those wives whose husband’s I met earlier that week.
An apron isn’t going to ease the pain of not having their spouse.
An apron isn’t going to change the fact that holidays and birthdays are still going to be missed.
Sharing recipes isn’t going to make their loved ones come home any earlier. Or safe.
But it will give them something created uniquely for women going through what they are going through.
And if it gives just one of them something to look forward to, then I’ve done my small part in making the time alone more bearable.
If you, or someone you know is a spouse, mother, grandmother, aunt to someone deployed overseas then I invite you to sign up for The Traveling Apron: Recipes While They’re Overseas.
An apron, a recipe binder, and blank recipe cards will be provided for your use.
At the end of the swap, the collection of recipes will be compiled for all participants to enjoy.
This apron will begin circulating December 15th, 2013 and run through December 15th, 2014.
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And since we’re talking about another apron + recipe swap, have you been following the original Traveling Apron Recipe Swap on Instagram?
You can enter the hashtag #travelingapron and see all the places it has been.
There’s some big, big, BIG news coming up soon regarding its travels.