Friday, July 5, 2013

Memories of the past few days and a special thank you!

A special thank you to all of you who made my birthday wish come true for me and for Matthew!

It meant so very much to know that people were being loved and encouraged during this time!  It did my heart so good!  

There is so much truth in money cannot buy happiness!  There is not one single gift that has ever been able to buy me happiness on my birthday and on Matthew's birthday, but this year...this year, there was happiness and great joy in my heart and money didn't buy it!  Your love, encouragement and support of my birthday wish did~  Thank you!!!

Today I am going to photo bomb the blog and give you a glimpse at our days as we celebrated Matthew's life, my birthday and the 4th of July.  You were all such a big part in making these days so special and responsible for so many smiles!  

I started the morning of Matthew's birthday with posting my birthday wish and then turning off all notifications on my phone.  I knew I wanted the next couple of days to be family, family and more family.  If I had a big "Gone Fishin'" sign to post, that is what I would have posted!  I didn't want to miss a thing with my boys.  I wanted to take Matthew's birthday and make memories.  So that is exactly what we did.  Below are a few pics from his special day.  

July 2, 2013 ~  Matthew's 8th Birthday 

Will was holding the balloon so tight, except for one...

We quickly released the rest so they could all go together

this conversation between me and Nathan was pretty special...I am glad RW got this pic
Visiting the cemetery is always so bittersweet, especially on Matthew's birthday...but I will say that the conversations we have are amazing out there.  It has become a space that knows no barriers with what we talk about.  And the boys will say what their heart is feeling and that is so important to us.  We talk very openly in our home as well, but when we are out there, it is real and raw, unplugged and uncensored. These moments are necessary...

We had a sweet time at the cemetery together.  Bittersweet, but sweet.

Gone Fishin'...

We got Dixie after Matthew passed away for Nathan, she turned 8  June 23rd.  She is our special pup for  sure!

Atta' boy!  
Large mouth?  

Will doing his catchin' some fish dance!

Buddy and Dixie sniffing for snakes keeping our boys safe
Will decided to squirt whip cream on his bait just to see if the fish would  like it!  ;)

The latest addition to our family, Buddy~  

country boy 
My favorite kind of four-wheeling...SAFE!  That's what I 'm talking about!  
breaking the pool rules...only one on  the slide at a time!  

Baking brownies wearing goggles...that's how Will rolls!  

Are you smiling yet?
How adorbs is he?

We made many memories on Matthew's birthday this year...smiled a lot and felt blessed with every single moment we were able to spend together!  Very blessed!

July 3, 2013 ~ My 39th Birthday

My birthday is usually quite unbearable for me, but this year it was different!  The minute I put my birthday wish on the blog, I knew it was going to be different!  There was a great peace in my heart that I haven't had in a long time associated with my birthday.   My heart found a way to help others through the days that hurt my heart so very much!  There is great healing in helping others and this was giving me joy...great joy!

My day started with some big hugs from my boys and RW!  Good stuff!  Then off to lunch with some family at Newk's.  

Lunch with family at Newk's

My Mama~  

Movie time with my sistas and RW 

RW went to the movies with us girls...we left Mom behind though because we were going to see "The Heat" and she would have been washing all of our mouths out with soap!  The movie made us laugh so hard!  Laughing was good! Really good!  

After the movie, RW went back to work and me and sistas went shopping for a bit and then of course we went to eat frozen yogurt!  We sat in the yogurt shop and did some catching up on sister stuff and then the rain began!  

It rained so hard on the way home  and just a few miles from the house, the sun started shining again.  I was so glad the rain stopped!  I had a big blonde dog at home I was going to have to bathe, again!  

When I got home, this was waiting on me and so was the big blonde muddy dog!  

beautiful flowers from some special people 
I walked in the front door and out the back door to see the beautiful sky as the sun peeked through the clouds.  
after the rain 

This was in the late evening on my birthday and I was was a tired smile, but it was a smile!  
My Mom got me this for my birthday and the verse 1 Samuel 1:27-28 is on Matthew's tombstone, notice the date on this!  
 The message below the scripture is so beautiful too!

July 3rd message
 I am not sure where my mom found this but I am so glad she did!

RW and I were home alone since the boys were spending the night with their grandparents~ so we did what any responsible parents would do without their kids...

We said "gosh, it is QUIET!"  And laughed as we realized we could watch anything we wanted on TV and not have to settle any arguments or flip any coins!  And we ate irresponsibly and we stuck knives in our food containers when we finished our meal! 

8 years ago on my birthday I was on life support...this year on my birthday, I had a beautiful evening with my husband, we ate steak dinners in take-out containers at the kids table with the dogs eagerly awaiting any left overs! It was absolutely PERFECT!  

In honor of the movie we saw earlier today, "The Heat," this is how we finished dinner!  ;)

And this is how I finished dessert...every last bit of it!  

I just realized in typing this that I had frozen yogurt and 1/2 gallon of ice cream on the same day!  Owning it! I ate it all!  It was worth it!  

July 4, 2013

RW and I had the house to ourselves for the morning and early afternoon too~  can you say it was still QUIET?  We were laughing again because it was so quiet!  It was a good quiet for a little while, but we were both very beyond ready to go get our boys! 

While waiting to leave to go to RW's parents, I watched Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest on ESPN- can you say GROSS?  Omyword~ I was  holding my hands over my eyes peeking and screaming at the same time!  I couldn't bear to look at it but I couldn't change the channel!  I was listening to the count getting higher and higher and finally as they were counting down the last 10 seconds, I made a big mistake, I looked up!  Well, curiosity killed the cat, right?  I looked up just in time to see the last bit shoved in the winner's mouth and I ran to the bathroom as quick as I could and threw up...and threw up!  Oh Lord, it was bad!

RW was laughing at me, shaking his head because I didn't change the channel!  Never again will I watch that!  Nope, yuck!

Now I cannot quit thinking about that...ewe...there goes the rest of this blog post and so much for dinner tonight! ;)

The car ride was so quiet on the way to RW's parents house.  We weren't having to tell anyone in the backseat to quit touching the other person or to not say that or be nice to your brother or, well, you get the picture!

We talked to each other and listened to the radio and everything!  When we finally arrived at his parents house and saw little Will!  He ran toward the car with sweat dripping down his face and a big smile! 

With that we began an evening of more memories that included eating (of course), Frisbee golf (or whatever you call it), tank wars,  fireworks and more!

Will greeting us at his Nana and Pop's house as we were pulling in the driveway 

3 generations at the grill...professional taste testers too!  

My Family~ Matthew may not  be visible in the photo, but he is so present in all that  we do in our lives!  And that is a beautiful gift to us all!  

We made it through, smiling!

The perfect evening for fireworks!

And at last the evening was over, the rain pouring down, leftovers in the car, the boys buckled in and RW and I holding hands as we pulled out of the driveway and headed for home...

With the following words quickly out of our mouths "boys, don't touch each other, don't say that, be nice, it may be your water, but please give him a sip..." and well, you get the picture!

With that, we squeezed our hands tighter, smiled at each other and turned the radio up!

We made it...together, with the support, love and encouragement from our wonderful friends and family!  We made it!

I am sending lots of love from our family to yours today!

Thank you for making this so special for us, for remembering Matthew, Christopher and honoring my birthday wish!  What a beautiful blessing to my heart!

Thank you!


  1. So glad you found joy on your extra hard days! ❤

  2. Thank you Jamie! Thinking of you!!! <3