Saturday, December 31, 2016

Our Tree

My family has been going on vacation to Massanutten in Virginia annually since my brothers were 2 (so for 30 years). That's my entire life. :) My grandparents got a timeshare there to ensure quality family time. Some of my most treasured memories throughout my life are from our vacations there.

Anyways, in October 2009, Lily got to go to Massanutten too when I was carrying her. My brothers and I went on a hike with our grandmother where we found a tree that we all carved our initials into. Each trip back to Massanutten now, we visit "our tree" and touch up our carvings. We went on a beautiful afternoon this week. Since '09, other family member's initials have also been added. Here are mine and my girl's initials (HR and LK for Hannah Rose and Lily Katherine). Side-by-side, of course. Sweet memories of her life. ❤️🌳 


When Lily Went to Philly

7 years ago at this time of year, Lily went to Philly. I was right at 29 weeks pregnant at the time. ❤️ 

Earlier this week, I saw these two things on Facebook "Memories" that I posted in December 2009:

My mom, brothers, sister, Lily and I were together on this fun and memorable trip. We walked around downtown, got hot beverages at charming local coffee shops, explored historic/touristy destinations, tried the famous Philly cheesesteak sub, and stayed at the oldest hotel in the city. My mom and brothers went to an Eagle's football game. 

I kept having contractions and we joked that "Lily wanted to be born in Philly." My belly was getting a lot bigger, to the point of not being able to button up my coat all the way, as you can see in the photo above. That makes me giggle. :) Lily was growing big and strong!

One of the first posts on this blog of mine was something I wrote when we were in Philadelphia - City of Brotherly Love. I talked about wanting to treasure the time with my family, especially my sister, who was growing up so fast... little did I know that I was living some of the only days with my daughter that I'd ever get. It never could have crossed my mind. I am so thankful my girl had lots of adventures during her time on Earth with her adoring family.

Here are some of my favorite photos from that trip...

I have several pages in Lily's scrapbook from our Philly trip. Excuse the bad-lighting photos with glaring (from the page protectors). I'll explain more about them when I eventually (hopefully sooner rather than later) share my entire scrapbook for Lily.

Oh, those little socks... we got them at the Betsy Ross House for our Lily girl. Now they will remain in a scrapbook, never having been worn by her. But they are so very precious to me as they were bought specifically for her... when she was still here.


Lily Remembered in Jackson Hole

Lily was remembered by my friend Elise this week in Jackson Hole, Wyoming! πŸ’•❄️


Lily Remembered in the Dominican Republic

Sweet Lily was remembered by Danielle this month at Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. πŸŒŠπŸ¬πŸ³πŸš❤️ 


A Lily and a Rose(nberg)

My friend Jaime in Canada sent me this photo and wrote: "A Lily and a Rose(nberg)! My aunt brought the box over with a ring toss game in it a while ago but it was only yesterday that I saw the side of the box and realized the treasure in it! XO"

Pretty neat, eh? πŸ˜„πŸ˜„πŸ˜„


Lily Remembered at Hamilton Gardens

My friend ChloΓ© in New Zealand snapped these lovely photos and compiled this collage for me a couple days before Christmas.

She wrote: "We went to the Hamilton Gardens today, and there were so many different types of lilies I couldn't resist taking a few photos! Love to you this Christmas, pretty lady" 


Lily Nutella

My friend Naomi in Canada tagged me on Facebook and showed me this add that popped up on her NewsFeed. I'd love a can of Nutella like this. :)


Gift Shop Thoughtfulness

My friend Tina in New York sent this photo to me and wrote: "I'm in a gift store... thought of you... of Lily. I wish it had said "Lily."

Just missing "Hannah." These are beautiful. πŸ’•


Saturday, December 24, 2016

Hurting Hearts at Christmas

Tomorrow is Christmas Day. I know there are a lot of hurting hearts this time of year, and wanted to share a few things for those people.

Here's a beautiful song by Craig Aven, for those grieving the loss of a loved one at Christmas.

Lily's Christmas Spot 2016

My girl's spot is always my first stop when I come to Virginia. She's all ready for Christmas now. Instead of spending Christmas with her and picking out gifts for her, I've been selecting items to decorate her grave from different stores over the past several weeks. I enjoy being able to do something tangible for her. I've anticipated visiting her spot this season. She's got her little Christmas tree, a stocking with an "L," her own little snowman ornament, flowers, another snowman, a solar Christmas tree that lights up at night, and a Nativity flag that my dear friend Christine gave me for Lily's spot. I hope to stop by for a visit on Christmas Day. ❤️πŸŽ„πŸ’š⛄️🌟


Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Sweet Lily's Stocking

This is Lily's memorial Christmas stocking, made with love a couple years ago by her great-grandmother. ❤️πŸŽ„

Bumma made one for me as a little girl, and now she's made one for my own little girl. We picked out the colors, design, and yarn together, Bumma knitted it, and my sister-in-law Kala crocheted the little strands for the green and red dangly balls.

I plan on hanging her stocking each year, one day hopefully next to the stockings of Lily's future siblings. My girl will always be a part of my life and Christmas.

If you're a bereaved parent, I'd love to see a photo of your baby's stocking if you have one.

You can read more about Lily's stocking, see more photos and a video by clicking here.


Red-Velvet Christmas Chocolate

My sweet friend Bex sent me a thoughtful Christmas package. :)

She wrote: "I know this season has many moments of missing your Lily. ❤️  I'm thinking of you often and praying for you heart. I saw this chocolate and just knew I needed to send it to you! Enjoy!"

It is a gift to know my girl is remembered this season by others too. πŸŽ„

If you're new here, you can click here to read about the significance of red-velvet.

And you can click here to read about my friendship with Bex.


My 2 in Heaven

My friend Emily saw this license plate a few days ago and thought of me. I'm glad she snapped a photo. I love my 2 sweet little ones who wait for me in Heaven. ❤️  #LilyKatherine #LukeShiloh #mytwoLs


A Different Perspective

Someone recently left a comment on one of my blog posts that touched my heart.

She wrote, "The whole time while reading your story, I had that big lump in my throat. Eventually, I couldn't hold it in anymore and burst out crying. I can't even imagine the pain you went through, and yet you described it all so well that I felt it. I don't know how you manage to live with it every single day, and I admire it a lot. I have a little girl. She's a year and a half. I love her more than anything, and yet, to be honest, a lot of times she drives me crazy, and I feel like I can't take it anymore. Reading your story gave me the breath of fresh air I've longed for. Now I see it all from a different perspective, and definitely will be more appreciative from now on. Thank you so much."

Lily's legacy stretches far and wide. It never ceases to bless my heart to see how the Lord has used my little girl in ways I couldn't have imagined. For someone to treasure their living child in a deeper, richer, and fuller way, because of my girl and the fact that she is not here, touches this mother heart of mine.

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