Deployment is Over! 4 Simple Ways to Welcome Your Sailor Home

USS Stout returned from deployment April 4, 2014. Photo by WAVY/Larry Carney.

A little birdie told us that the USS Harry S. Truman strike group will be arriving home in the very near future after a very lengthy 9-month deployment. Some of you may already have your welcome-home plan on lockdown, but if you’re a procrastinator or just simply have been pulling single-parent duty for so long you can no longer see straight, we’re here to offer up 4 simple ways to welcome your sailor home. Each of the below ideas can be done last minute, so we hope it will help you prepare for your loved one’s return.

1. Create a clever sign to take pier-side.

If you have a solid two weeks lead time, Build-A-Sign offers up one free sign to families of deployed military. It’s a pretty fantastic deal, but if you’re a procrastinator by nature or for those of you with the USS Truman strike group arriving home in the very near future – you’ll have to go the home-made route which can be just as fun.

Pinterest has a plethora of ideas that you can hit up for inspiration. Some of my favorite signs found so far had such clever welcome home phrases. Why re-invent the wheel when you can borrow from someone else’s clever work?

Read below and click to see the samples for inspiration:

Always under the same stars, finally under the same roof! Welcome Home! (source

Our missing puzzle piece has finally returned home! (source)

Here to pick up the love of my life. Welcome home Sailor! Prepare to be debriefed!  (source)

Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy but my name’s (insert new baby name) and I’m your baby! (source)

Hand over my Daddy! (adorable source)

2. Dress the part.

This can be as simple as wearing a blue and white stripe top with dark wash jeans and some red accessories or you can go all out and dress to the nines by finding a dress that fits the theme of the day and then recycle it later for the upcoming Memorial and Fourth of July holidays! I know Amazon has a full clothing shop, with Prime shipping , there’s still time to shop!

And, don’t get us started on duds for the little ones. Anchors anyone? Or, put them in Mom or Dad’s uniform!

3. Decorate Your Yard.

Some favorites in addition to the usual small flags placed in the ground include:

  • Creating stars using flour all around the yard.
  • DIY red, white and blue lanterns. These are simple to create. Adhere tissue paper with modge podge to the outside/inside of your jar (I’ve seen both),  add a tea light on the inside and voila!
  • A chalk mural created by your kids on the driveway is a sweet way to prepare for your deployed sailor’s homecoming. Just check the weather report to see that it won’t be washed away!

4. Let them eat cake!

Even for those of us who do not possess a single ‘susie-home-baker’ gene, this red, white and blue cake is manageable. Pick up a box of food coloring, a couple boxes of  white cake mix  and cream cheese frosting and you’ll be set! The recipe listed makes their cake from scratch, but I’m one for cutting as many baking corners as possible. Who’s with me?  Or, you know, you could go with this festive, no bake cake. 

Finally, we thank you for your dedicated service as you endured 9 long months apart from your service member. It is no easy feat and one that takes a resilient spirit. Each and every family member and service member is remarkable and we are so happy you will be reunited soon.

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