The Caskey Family


One Year Home
October 29, 2009, 1:44 am
Filed under: Deployment, family news, Pictures

“For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan. . .that all the peoples of the earth may know the hand of the Lord, that it is mighty. . .” Joshua 4:23-34  “You (God) are good, and what you do is good;”  Psalm 119:68a

Last year was one of the most difficult of my life.  Probably even harder than the year I lost my mother – the same year my father walked away from the Church (he has since returned) and his family and my siblings and I were separated to what seemed like the four corners of the earth.

I have told Jeremy that being separated from him for about eight months changed me.  I have prayed that I would trust God’s hand and take what HE handed our family (yes, it was the Air Force that sent him, but GOD controls the USAF) without questioning.  But this is hard.  Some days I did not know if I would wake up a single mom, or if I would get a call from Jeremy, or a ringing doorbell with uniformed person.  What would I do if that happened?  Jeremy and I talked about what would happen if he did not return home.  It was necessary.  We are not promised tomorrow, and having a husband in combat chasing around Army Special Forces is an extremely vivid reminder of that!

As I mentioned in a recent blog, one afternoon spent in the home of an Iraqi family here in Louisville has made me suddenly able to be grateful for the time Jeremy was apart from us.  God has opened the doors for us, through Jeremy’s understanding of the Iraqi culture and through Jeremy’s love for the people of Iraq.  God is doing great things (as He has been since before eternity) in our lives as a family, as we get to know a few families from Iraq, as they open their homes to love us and we enjoy loving them in our homes also.

This last gathering they accepted Arabic Bibles and the Jesus Film in Arabic from us as a gift.  One woman in the group said she is reading the Bible every night and has almost finished the first two books of the Old Testament.  We are so excited!!

We don’t have pictures yet, but we are also building relationships with some families from Bhutan and Jeremy is teaching a translated Bible study on Wednesday nights.   We have been able to begin sharing the gospel with our friends from both Bhutan and Iraq.

I will have more pictures after Sunday when we cook Nepalese and Bhutanese food with the ladies, but here are a few from an outing with our Iraqi friends and a gathering at our house this weekend as we celebrated Jeremy’s return from Iraq one year ago!

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Living the Good Life!
October 27, 2008, 12:29 am
Filed under: Deployment, family news, Jeremy, Pictures, Video

“How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! And the children of men take refuge in the shadow of Your wings.”  Psalm 36:7

We are so thankful for Jeremy’s safe return and God’s faithfulness to each of us during the separation.  It ended up being just over 8 months with training included and just a little over 6 months not counting training. . . a LONG time for us!

Here is a short video of our reunion from Tuesday evening.  It was so sweet!  Adjustments are going very well, though we are still sort of in family hibernation (phones turned off and going out to visit people) as we enjoy having our daddy and husband home.

Our next fun event we are looking forward to is the arrival of our little man.  I am now working toward 38 weeks, and have had some good preparatory contractions, so it will be exciting to soon see our little guy in person!  My brother David and his new wife Katelyn are traveling to be with us for his arrival.  We are looking forward to some fun times with them!

A million thanks to all of you as you have prayed for us, encouraged us, called us, written us and loved us in so many ways during this time.  We are blessed to have each of you in our lives!



Husband’s Return and Hoping For Heaven
October 20, 2008, 12:45 am
Filed under: Deployment, family news, Jeremy

2 Peter 3:10-13 says:

“But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.  Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner [of persons] ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat?  Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.”

It is with great anticipation that I wait for my husband to return, and long for it.  As I process everything that has happened and is happening as this deployment comes to an end, I am convicted about my longing for my Savior’s return. . .do I plan for it, ache for it, clean house (spiritually) for it. . .am I willing to spend (or part with) money in preparation for it, talk about it as the first thing off my tongue to people who ask me how I’m doing?  Do I lay awake at night wondering what it will be like to see Him face to face?  Do my children sense that the day of my Bridegroom’s return is something that is thrilling to me, that I can hardly wait to experience?  Do they know that life will never be the same when He comes back, because I have told them of the things we will do with Him when he returns?

Just for comparison, here’s a picture taken of us about 8 months ago before Jeremy left for training and Iraq.  Lord-willing, soon we will new family picture to post here!



Blessings Beyond Comprehension
October 16, 2008, 6:20 pm
Filed under: Deployment

Though this separation has been hard, I have continually been shown God’s grace, mercy and rich blessings in the most unusual ways.  Sometimes they are spiritual blessings, sometimes they are physical blessings.  Today was no exception.  I have been trying to get a little touchup paint for some scuffs and scratches on the walls as I prepare for Jeremy’s return.  Our black chairs somehow ALWAYS end up against the wall, and leave their irremovable marks there.

After multiple calls over the last few weeks to the housing, maintanence and contracters office to at least find out the name of the paint so I could get a little can, I finally talked with the housing manager today.  He took my information and about two hours later, a PAINT CREW showed up at my door to paint my walls themselves!!  20 minutes later the walls in my house with the worst marks were perfectly white and I had a little disposible container of the paint for any other scuffs or marks I found later or were on other walls.

Talk about God providing and blessing beyond what I could ever ask or imagine!!  I’m still in shock!



A Local Meal
September 7, 2008, 8:45 pm
Filed under: Deployment, Jeremy, Pictures


Jeremy writes,

I had a fun mission today where we met with some local sheiks (tribal leaders) and had a meeting and a meal. They slaughtered the fatted calf for us – actually two sheep, in which I helped skin. When I say that I helped skin the sheep, like a politician, I did a little mainly for the photo op. The meal was delicious. Besides lamb, we also had some cooked vegetables (onions, tomatoes, and peppers) stuffed with rice and dates, fresh fruits and vegetables, rice, potatoes, Iraqi soda, and some terrific flat bread. We also got to play some soccer with the kids who also enjoyed seeing photos of my children on my iPod, as well as listening to some music: Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, Bach’s Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring (my subtle attempt at witnessing), Frank Sinatra, and even some Christmas music. Several of them were huddled around me, each fighting for a turn at one of two headphones.  I gave out honey sticks to the children and they gobbled them up and asked for more .  I told them I had to save them for other children we’d be seeing.  One of them can be seen wearing my helmet in the photo above. It was a great day, embracing the Iraqi culture. I even did the back and forth cheek kiss with the sheiks! Salaamu aleykum (Peace be upon you).



More Videos
September 5, 2008, 7:37 am
Filed under: Deployment, Jeremy, Video

Jeremy writes,
I took the liberty of adding a link to my videos out here in the field, off to the left under “Links”.  So if you would like to keep up with what I’m doing, check it out.  One video of particular interest to anyone who has sons (I know Charlie Von Rosenburg would enjoy this video) is the Iraqi SWAT Close Quarters Battle Training.  Elijah watched it several times, and kept asking to see it again, and talked about it, and asked questions each time.  So from now on, if you want to click on that link off to the left under “Links” every few days, you should be able to see any videos that they have added of what I’m doing.  Enjoy!



Jerebo
September 3, 2008, 10:33 pm
Filed under: Deployment, Jeremy, Pictures

  

 

Jeremy writes,
The title is a play on words for those who didn’t catch the ‘Stallonian’ cinematic reference.  Here are some photos of me out on patrol doing my job.  All of the photos are taken by my photographic counterpart, Tiffany Dusterhoft, who is pictured with me and some Iraqi SWAT trainees.  Keep us all in your prayers, especially during September, the month of Ramadan here.  Ramadan typically musters a certain amount of ‘religious fervor’ if you know what I mean.  It’s an interesting job to say the least, but I am ready to hang up my spurs and settle in at home here soon.



Wii Mario Kart Saga
August 26, 2008, 12:11 am
Filed under: Adina, Deployment, Elijah, family news, Jeremy, Merry

I’ve been duly chided. Jeremy says it’s been 9 days since I’ve posted about the children or us over here in the US. I guess he thinks it’s cheating to post stuff about him and his videos and keep you all updated on him . . .go figure! I guess he doesn’t think it’s as interesting as we are.

My list for today included going to the the post office to mail a few packages, which is a field trip in itself, one trip to a Game Stop (yes, Adina went to a video game store!!) and a stop at the arena near us to get GOOD SEATS (got to love the military discounts!) for Disney on Ice for our family for the 16th of NOVEMBER. . . our whole family of 5 will go for $31.50 (and I didn’t purchase the cheapest tickets either!) I am praying Jeremy will be home, and it looks like that may very well happen! I was so excited to buy something that had a date on it for AFTER his return potentially!

Hardly do I ever have 100% success at all my errands, but we were blessed with that today. Most surprising was the Game Stop visit – I was actually able to purchase Mario Kart for Wii, which has been out of stock EVERYWHERE since the early summer when I started looking for it. Jeremy asked me to purchase that with his birthday money from his Grandma, and practice it while he was gone so that I would perhaps be close to a competitive level to play with him when he returns (he is being kind. . .even after months of practice, it may still only take him 3 minutes to beat me, but I guess that’s better than the 30 seconds it usually takes me to lose a video game against him.)

So, I find out they have some at the Game Stop down the road, and I get there and purchase the second to the last one they have; I get in the van and explain to Elijah and Merry that we finally got Dadda his game for his birthday; as we drive away, Elijah says, “I want to see ‘da game for Dadda, Momma.” So I hand it to him in the bag, packaged up, he opens the bag (I can hear this, I’m driving out of the parking lot) and says “I’ll show it to Mimi. . . WOW, look at ‘dat, what a nice game!” (LOTS OF DRAMA in his voice) I chuckle to myself as he has no idea that it isn’t a new version of “HiHO Cherry-O” or something like that. He continues in the back, “Look, Mimi, you’re really gonna’ like ‘dat game, it’s nice.” I laugh even more as I realize that Elijah is more like his daddy than we realize sometimes. . . doing with Merry what Jeremy has already done with me. . .try to make me think I will like playing this “nice” video game, talking it up and showing me how amazing it is. . .

So. . .the children are in bed, and I’m going to take a stab at this and hope that in Elijah’s words, I’m “. . .really gonna’ like ‘dat game!”



Watch One of Jeremy’s Latest Pieces
August 22, 2008, 12:56 am
Filed under: Deployment, Jeremy, Video

Here are some interesting videos Jeremy shot on some recent missions. This is public footage, kinda’ cool that we get to see his work only two or three days after he shot the footage!  This is the good stuff FOX or CNN or NBC won’t ever show you. . . I love the humanitarian/Iraqi-American cooperation view we get to see!  You may have to be patient – they take a little to load. I’m going to try to get some photo links up for his partner’s portfolio (which have some photos of him in them of course!)

http://www.dvidshub.net/?script=video/video_show.php&id=43714

http://www.dvidshub.net/index.php?script=video/video_show.php&id=43713

http://www.dvidshub.net/index.php?script=video/video_show.php&id=43518



Jeremy’s Update
August 20, 2008, 12:41 am
Filed under: Deployment, Jeremy, Pictures

Jeremy writes,
I just wanted to give everyone a quick update and post a couple of photos. I am settled in at my new location at a Forward Operating Base in Iraq, and have had the opportunity to get a few missions under my belt. With recent events in the country of Georgia, Georgian forces have pulled out of this location and have returned to their country. I’ve been able to document that as well as the Iraqis in the city of Al-Kut along the Tigris River, the cradle of civilization.

Here I am with a member of the Iraqi media.

Me interviewing a Georgian officer.