Dress Code and Marine Corps Events…

Oh it’s that time again ladies…..our superbowl, our Golden Globe Awards, Our CMA’s…let the hairspray and spanx hold on tight here we GO!

First of all did you know on base there is a civilian dress code?  I KNOW scandalous!  I would’ve never thought in this day and age grown adults would need to know how to dress appropriately while walking into the grocery store aka commissary but I’ll roll with it.  Did you know? Your Marine is responsible for your actions, attire and lack of attire at events whether you are on or off base & whether you’re married or ‘just friends’.  We’ll go with the rule of thumb:  If it’s written in here it’s because it’s been done before & to what extent the backlash of the attire categories varies from command to command & will never truly be known but can range from simple razzing and stares all night to being asked to leave an event with a formal follow-up meeting afterwards.  This is simply to inform those who are not aware not condemn but I never said it wasn’t entertaining. 😛

Hopefully you like going to events.  Hopefully you’re a semi-modest, rule follower.  Since there are plenty of events & rules to go along with those events in this Marine Corps lifestyle.  There will be events for you and your husband, just your husband or just you are invited to for many reasons it could be for the entire unit, battalion, a base function, a personal or private ceremony or an organization event. Whether it is announced through email, a flyer or in a formal mailed invitation make sure you look at the desired clothing attire on the invitation. If it is not written specifically call the hostess, event organizer, FRA (Family Readiness Assistant) or FRO for more detailed information. The Marines will know what to wear because their command will tell them more than once. There are a few options for the women though.  Here we go:

Formal Attire aka Marine Corps Ball: ABSOLUTELY POSITIVELY WITHOUT EQUIVICATION FORMAL MEANS  Tea, Ankle or Floor length Formal Evening Gowns ONLY!  Don’t be ‘THAT GIRL’.  If you are you are forewarned you may be asked to leave and at the bare minimum will be made fun of & always thought of like that by your peers, your husbands co-workers and bosses.  There is always at least one at every formal event.  This isn’t Amish life so steer clear from making anything yourself.  This also isn’t the Victorian era, flapper era, or your wedding.  As cool as they are it’s probably not a good idea: mini-skirts, nip slip dresses, combo-red, white and blue dresses, too tight dresses, high slits, dresses that require pasties, only have strips of fabric covering your ta-ta’s or would require baby powder before you ‘slip it on’.  Combat boots are optional.  No seriously, leave those at home.  You’re not going to a biker bar or to the field.  We all want to be comfortable but theres a line between sliding off your heels under the table and being disrespectful of the occasion.

Please rememer we are a part of the few, the proud, the Marines not in a costume contest or a group member of the Pussycat Dolls, Jersey Shore, Toddler’s & Tiaras, Kardashians, the Real Housewives or an extra on Magic Mike or Striptease think about not only yourself but your husband when choosing attire for a formal function.

Good dress…BUT…ummmm Okayyy

Combat Boots & RIPPED Crocheted panty hose

Change of Command/Retirement Ceremonies:Attire for Ladies: Dress  although I’ve seen more Business Casual

California Casual: Consists of Skirt, Khakis, Shorts or Nice Jeans (no ripped, torn or faded items)

Conservative Casual/Business Casual Attire for Ladies: Crisp Pants, Skirt and Modest Blouse

Depending on where you’re stationed will dictate the above information and can vary from time zone to time zone. Unless it is 120* do not wear a mini-skirt to a formal event; not only is it against the rules and inappropriate but some senior Marines and wives may call your date/husband out in front of everyone or off to the side and get in trouble because of something that could have been avoided by following the rules.

Other expectations include:

Make sure that you “repondez s’il vous plait” or RSVP meaning, “please respond” so that the hostess will know how many to account for regarding seating and food. You wouldn’t want to throw a party at your house and invite 40 and only 10 RSVP so you cook for 10 but 50 ends up at your house. So out of good manners and respect for the hostess and command please RSVP!

Another big thing at Marine Corps functions is to show up on time. Generally this means 15 minutes before the actual start time to get situated in the room, say your hello’s and find your seat.  If you’re late to a Mess Night or something similar you may not be allowed in until a break & then have to pay a fine of some sort.

Expect to socialize in one way or another.  Do NOT have your cell phone on and if it has to be on for emergencies please put it on vibrate. They typically remind you before any ceremony to turn it off out of respect for others. You do not want to be the one whose phone rings an inappropriate or loud ringtone during colors or other sacred ceremony. You’re husband/date will NOT be very happy with you.

Also, when the flag is passing, the National Anthem or Marine Corps Hymn is playing or the Pledge of Allegiance is being said as the spouse or parent of a Marine, it is customary to stand as well and place your hand over your heart.

Most importantly just have fun & take pictures!  🙂


What is the Marine Corps Birthday?

In honor of our beloved Marine Corps Birthday….
“The Marines I have seen around the world have the cleanest bodies, the filthiest minds, the highest morale, and the lowest morals of any group of animals I have ever seen. Thank God for the United States Marine Corps!”
-Eleanor Roosevelt, First Lady of the United States, 1945
That quote thoroughly describes Marines of that era & also of today.
The United States Marine Corps is more than just boot camp, social events, training, deployments, hierarchy, and even Birthday Balls.  There are very deep rooted traditions and reasoning attached to all of these events and functions.  Every single toast, speech, ceremony has been done for one way or another for over 200 years.

The United States Marine Corps traces its roots to the Continental Marines of the American Revolutionary War, formed by Captain Samuel Nicholas at Tun Tavern (which to me explains why a lot of the ceremonies and traditions are centered around alcohol) in Philadelphia on 10 November 1775, to raise 2 battalions of Marines. That date is regarded and celebrated as the date of the Marine Corps’ “birthday”. At the end of the American Revolution, both the Continental Navy and Continental Marines were disbanded in April 1783. The institution itself would not be resurrected until 1798. In that year, in preparation for the Quasi-War with France, Congress created the United States Marine Corps. Marines had been enlisted by the War Department as early as August 1797 for service in the new-build frigates authorized by Congress. The “Act to provide a Naval Armament” of March 18, 1794 authorizing them had specified the numbers of Marines to be recruited for each frigate.
Since then there has been countless missions and wars from the Civil War to Operation Enduring Freedom (or OEF) that the Marines have had a huge participation in. At the inception of the Marine Corps the need was basically infantrymen and has grown to now include pilots, security forces, administration personnel, and so many more jobs including our never failing, brave and hardworking infantry (aka grunts).
Everyone from presidents to high ranking officers and even celebrities have commented on how important, committed and passionate Marines are to the mission of keeping the United States of America safe. These men’s dedication and persistence is what makes us stand perfectly still and hold our hands over our hearts while the National Anthem is being played. These men have pride and honor for their jobs more than any civilian will ever know. When they celebrate their Marine Corps Birthday these men are not just using this day as an excuse to party hard, have a day off or to slack off.
Don’t forget; not every Marine gets to celebrate the Marine Corps birthday in a classy location surrounded by flowers and alcohol. They maybe in the middle of the Pacific, at the hospital recovering from an injury or are in a sandstorm thousands of miles away in a country fighting for our freedom.
All Marines take that night to celebrate and honor their current brothers and past Marines.  Some who could attend and the ones who could not for the above reasons. Some who have come and gone out of the Marine Corps and some Marines who have died in combat for Americans freedoms and safety not hesitating to give the ultimate sacrifice if it means we’ll all be able to sleep peacefully one more night.
As wives we have an overwhelming sense of pride for OUR Marines, their service and commitment to duty and I know their pride is 10 times bigger than the size of Texas. So ladies hold your head high when these men invite you to these events.  They are truly a part of the few and the proud and you are lucky to be an extension of them.
We are all in this lifestyle together and although we didn’t say the oath by being married to your Marine you are also part of this amazing Corps lifestyle! Be proud to be on his arm on this most prestigous occasion!
We hope everyone has an amazing Marine Corps Birthday! Have some cake, kiss your Marine, and enjoy this day!!!