Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Saturday, October 27, 2012


They're my favorite!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Hello Kitty Party

A lot of the decorations were bought at Walmart, where they have an awesome selection of Hello Kitty party supplies!

The tooth picks were originally for cupcake toppers, but I decided to do the cookie cake instead.  They worked just fine for veggies, fruit, and cheese!

We had raspberry lemonade in pink cups with umbrellas and straws--very girly!  I also had bottles of water and Capri Sun Roaring Waters.

This is the Hello Kitty cake, because Kitty makes sugar cookies on every episode.  It was a big, yummy hit--and SO easy!!

The lollipop arrangement was popular too.  Some snuck a few without their parents looking!

A few more sweet treats

We had Hello Kitty goody bags too!  (Caleb had me make superhero bags for the boys, who he did not feel would appreciate such girly favors.)

As far as activities, we had a bean bin, "Kitty Litter" (packing peanuts in a baby pool), Lego Duplos, coloring, and necklace making.  

We also had a time for the kids to decorate and fill bags for the kids at the Ronald McDonald House.  While it ended up being a little more involved than I originally planned, it got done and the bags look great!  The kids at RMH will love it.

I literally JUST realized that I did not bring these HK lanterns, which I painstakingly made.  Grr.  I will definitely have to figure something out for them.  

I think that's about all of the party activities and decorations!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Party Recap

So how did the Hello Kitty party go?  Purrrrr-fectly!  (Sorry, I just couldn't resist!

A lot of people were out of town for the three day weekend, but we still had plenty there to help us celebrate Abby's day.

The kids colored,

played in a pool of packing peanuts (AKA: the kitty litter!),

(Why yes, it was a humongous mess and probably not my best idea ever!)

and had a great time digging in our bean bin.  I think that was the biggest hit!

All three of Abby's former nurses came to the party.  Abby has never seen all three of them at the same time, and she was totally confused!

We sang "Happy Birthday..."

...complete with the ugly cry from me.  It wouldn't be the birthday song without it!

Abby couldn't quite blow out the candle, so I helped!

This year, we had super-soft sugar cookies with frosting piled up in a cake-like pile, because Hello Kitty makes sugar cookies in every episode!  My hope was that Abby might eat a little of it.

She did!  She LOVED the cookie!

Caleb bought Abby a present with his own money, and even wrapped it himself.  He was so proud.

He got her a book titled, Happy Birthday, Princess!  It's an I Can Read book that he can read to her, so he was even more thrilled with his choice.

The highlight of the day for Abby was getting her new Bitty Twin, Joy.  This was her first glimpse!

Joy even has glasses just like Abby!

I had a photo booth all set up, but I forgot about it a midst all the chaos until the end of the party!  I did get a few people's pictures.

It was a great day!

Pictures of food, decorations, etc. to follow!  

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Chesapeake Family

Click here to view a digital copy of the November issue of Chesapeake Family.  There is a piece about the Ronald McDonald House on pages 16-19, and our family's story is included.

If anyone happens to spot a paper copy of the magazine, please send it my way.  (It's a free magazine!)  I would love to have a real copy to keep.  Thanks!

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

My Sweet Son

A friend of mine, who teaches kindergarten at Caleb's school, posted this on my wall tonight:

I just have to tell you that yesterday I was admiring Caleb's pink cookie in his lunch & told him how much [my son] likes them. While doing so he shared, with the biggest smile, ..."Today's my sister Abby's birthday.  She is 2! She has this disease...or something like that...and kids who have it only live to be 1. She's already 2, and she's a miracle!  She loves Hello Kitty & we had a Hello Kitty party for her.  These cookies were what we had for it!" 
With tears already in my eyes, I told him that I knew who his sister was & that I prayed for her & him & his family all the time. He thought for a moment, then looked at me and said, "You do?! Do you read about us on my mom's computer?!" I literally could have just eaten him up!!! I know you already know, but I just want to remind you what a sweet, kind, loving little boy you have! He makes me smile every time I see him in lunch because he's always smiling himself! You should be so very proud! ❤

Caleb may be difficult at times, but he truly is a sweet boy who loves his sister with such a pure, selfless love.  I saw that tonight when she was being absolutely ridiculous and he was SO patient with her!  (He also liked that she was the one who had to go to bed early for once!)  My friend's post was a great reminder that Caleb has been forever affected by Abby's story too.  He knows a lot more than he lets on sometimes, and he has shared his fears several times.  He really loves Abby and doesn't want to lose her any more than we do.  He's such a good boy!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Birthday Fun!

Abby had a wonderful birthday!  Thanks to so many of you who wished her a happy birthday.  It means SO much to me as her mom that so many of you get it.  You realize how special each birthday is.  You understand the miracle of each day.  You celebrate the obstacles this child has overcome.  Thank you for that.  Thank you!

We started out the morning waking Abby up with a rousing rendition of Happy Birthday, then took her downstairs to open presents.  Abby's main present was a humongous rather large doll house with lots of furniture and people.  I wrapped the pieces separately so that she would have more presents to open, since that's the best part when you're two!

She also got a Hello Kitty hat and playground ball.

After seeing Caleb off to the bus, she got a little Daddy time while I went to the chiropractor.  We met up at the library for Monday Morning Movies and More.  This week was Angelina Ballerina, which Abby seemed to like.  They sang Happy Birthday to her too.  Matt left from the library for a pastors' retreat.  

When she woke up from her nap, I taught Abby the fine art of how to play in her dollhouse--which is now in her room.  She's definitely getting the hang of it, and it's cute to listen to her chattering to the people.

We got Caleb off of the bus and played in the beans for a while.  I don't think they had any fun at all--do you??
(These pictures were actually taken yesterday because I was remiss in taking any during today's playtime, but you get the idea!)

My sister and her family came over for a fancy dinner of grilled cheese and various party leftovers.  They only come here for my awesome cooking!  The kids played, ran a muck, and snuck candy corn.  Caleb and Abby also got a little Lucy snuggle time in!

Throughout the day, Abby had several birthday phone calls.  She even received sweet birthday cards from her favorite NICU nurse from all the way in Hawaii, and from some sweet members of a church who haven't met Abby, but who love and pray for her!

Caleb ended the night with a sweet prayer that included thanking Jesus, "For the blessings You have given us, for the miracle Abby is, and for letting her live to see another birthday."  His words, without any prompting.  I love that boy.

Now my two year old and my five year old are snug in their beds snoozing, and I'm posting pictures of just a "normal" birthday for a girl who is so much more special than normal!

It was a great day that brought a lot of smiles...and a few happy tears!

2 Years

October 22, 2010

October 22, 2011

October 22, 2012

A picture is worth a thousand words.  

Happy 2nd birthday, sweet Abby Joy!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Friday, October 19, 2012

Singing and Helping

Although I haven't yet caught it on video, Abby is starting to sing along to songs we sing!  Her favorites are "Happy Birthday" and "Oh Happy Day."  She often sings them in her bed after we say good night, and it is the cutest thing to hear over the monitor.  She throws her arms up in an O shape for the "Oh," and it cracks me up!

My girl also loves to help me around the house.  She pushes the wet clothes into the dryer, hands me clean clothes to fold, and picks up her toys so well!  She LOVES to empty the dishwasher, and comes running as soon as she hears me start.  My favorite is that she can match the lids to the Lock and Lock containers, put them on, and sticks them in their proper place in the cabinet! She also can put the silverware in the right sections.

Cognitive delays, my foot!

Thursday, October 18, 2012


Abby found a bag of fun-sized Snickers bars that are definitely going to the church tomorrow for the Fall Festival so that I don't eat them because the temptation is overwhelming and wouldn't let them go.  She ran around with the bag clutched in her fists for the rest of the night until bed.  Just a tad ironic, considering she won't even touch a Snickers bar to her lips...

Wednesday, October 17, 2012