Master Sgt. Amy Carpenter's heart was pounding as she walked down the hall of Wayne Community Elementary School.
The Iowa mother had not seen young sons in six months. She had been deployed in Kuwait with the Air Force National Guard since early July.
Her boys, Knox, 4, and Dane, 6, had no idea their mom was coming to their school.
"Mommy!" squealed Knox as he threw himself into her arms.
Carpenter's heart overflowed. "It's probably the greatest feeling I have ever had in my life, and it kind of makes you actually forget about the last 212 days that I have not been able to be with them," she told KCCI-TV. "It's just a feeling. I can't even explain it right now. It's awesome."
The family had planned a Super Bowl party for Sunday, but flight delays changed Carpenter's plans.
She's very glad to be home now.