Aren't those days exciting the closer and closer it gets to spending a small amount of time with your honey; for your "break" during their deployment? It's not much of a break; but to us it means the world. Being a military spouse is one of the hardest jobs I believe; we look forward to things like this so much...we are used to sleeping alone and getting quick 5 minute phone calls. We cringe everytime there's a knock at the door; the mail man is our best friend...but before I start rambling I'd like to share my tips on how to make the best out of your significant other's R&R! First; don't be upset if he uses a lot of the time to catch up on rest. More than likely he's traveled a ton to get back to you and remember...they work 16 hour days most of the time...they don't have "weekends." Respect this is their break time and they may want to use it to catch up on a ton of rest; they work very hard. I know we probably sit at home or have normal jobs while they put their lives on the line...but your soldier deserves some rest too! It does not mean he/she loves you any less.
* Schedule a photoshoot! Oplove.org is a wonderful organization that does free photoshoots for military; I believe they must be active duty; but take advantage of this. Memories are very important and you can use the photos for your home, for photo albums, facebook, holiday cards and more. My then fiance and I did these a few days before we got married and they mean a lot to me...someone took the time to give us free photos and of course I get to look at them whenever I'm lonely!
*Do a couple's massage...spoil your soldier. They work hard for us. This also falls under the super romantic category.
*If you live together; decorate for his arrival...if you are meeting him at a hotel; you can still decorate the hotel. This is wonderful company in which you can get free welcome home banners custom made for your soldier; you just pay for the shipping. http://www.buildasign.com/Troops Not sure how long that great deal will last; but you can also use vistaprints.com banners; they are affordable...or you can make your own. Something that says Welcome Home or just anything you wish to put to show your soldier you are excited they are home for even a short amount of time...until the next "see you later." Maybe add a cake, his fave food waiting on him and balloons. You do not have to go all out; but just a little something will be fun, don't forget to add a card!
* A counseling session....even if you have the most perfect relationship; I think this is an amazing thing to do for yourselves. This will help you just release emotions and communicate! Also; going to church will be something very nice to do; to just have a spiritual bond with your partner. If you are not religious; still consider the counseling session to just work on maintaining healthy emotions and communication for the rest of your relationship and/or deployment
* Create a memory! What have you all never done together? Have you never went to a certain aquarium you've always thought about visiting? Ever rode a hot air balloon? How about rock climbing? Whatever it may be; why not do something new together! Make the most out of it!
* Plan at least one family night and one friends night! Fun things to do are dinners, amusement parks,etc. Remember there are other people missing your soldier as well! Share your soldier with other people who love and support him.
* What are his favorite colors? Get some super sexy lingerie in the color for the occassion? Have a video camera? Don't be shy...use it!
* Do nor argue! Sure; your soldier may just irritate or annoy you in the little time he's back home for a bit; but do not sweat the small stuff during this time...you will regret it as soon as he's gone again.
* There's life besides you...what does this mean? Do not become angry if he does use some time for his/her friends and you may just feel left out. Why? The wives are the ones alone....for months and months...sometimes with the kids...we lose our minds a few times...we wait and wait for these day...and they want to not spend all their time with us? Yeah; it bites. But realize it's not healthy for your soldier to only consume their lives with you; allow them to spend time with friends or even if it's on that annoying Xbox of theirs. Don't feel left out if they use some time for themselves...
* Do not spend all of your time with everyone else...what do I mean by this? Save some alone time. Do not think that your family member's have to be around nonstop; or your soldier's family member and friends have to be around 24/7. Sure; they miss him too and he misses them...but it's the two of you who have suffered enough; do not spend all of your time with everyone else. That may be hard for them to understand; especially their family but the couple should come first; especially when you are married. Save a few nights to do family outings; maybe a dinner or game night...then maybe have a night where you get all the friends together for a night on the town. Save the first and last night just for you two at least! I had a friend that hung out with me and my then; boyfriend...now husband; a night before one of his trainings for his deployment and I always regret it. I cherish every day we get together and I feel like I would have rather just had that night for just the two of us. He was gone for two months and we should've had more alone time. Lessons learned :)