Thursday, December 29, 2011
Christmas eve is all about the build up… the new Christmas jammies… the writing a note to Santa leaving cookies and milk for the big guy and carrots for Rudolph. Daddy reads ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas from the same book my dad read to me and my siblings when we were little. It’s all about the traditions.
I know that Christmas is not only about the gifts. However for a family with two little ones Santa has a lot to do with it. There are very few things as wonderful to see then the sparkle in you babes eyes when they see that Santa came and all the fun pretty packages under the tree for the, Thankfully with the help of a lot of elves, Santa was able to ROCK this Christmas.
For Mike and I the best part of this Christmas was both our babies coming down the stairs to find presents under our tree and not in a room at Children’s Hospital. One Christmas spent at Children’s was enough for us. We both knew it was a very real possibility, and we would have made the best of it. It was nice not to have to.
Instead this is what we were greeted with as Katy & Patrick entered the living room…
Then they both went straight for the bikes…
I won’t bore you with the 300 pictures I took over the 3 hours that it took to open presents… but I will say it was awesome!! AWESOME!
Now the question is where the heck are we going to put all this?!
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
I knew it would be a fun night for our little dancer. Especially since after she saw the Rockettes perform in the Thanksgiving Day Parade she told us she wanted to be a dancer.
We met up with another amazing heart family, The Kaiser Family. They just so happened to be sitting in the same box as us which made for a fun time for the kids and gave Shannon & I a chance to chat. Sometimes it is so nice to talk to someone who gets it.
Katy & Bridget got along so well. Katy later told me her favorite part of the night was playing with her friend.
Patrick was memorized the entire time…
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
How did that happen? It is amazing to me how truly wonderful she is. Katy has a spirit about her that has gotten her through some pretty difficult days. She faces her struggles with a smile and lights up the room with the twinkle in her eyes. She reminds us to stop and live, laugh and love. She has touched the hearts of many people who have never even had the opportunity to meet her.
I am so lucky to be her mom… I think that almost everyday. She has a sense of humor (much like her mama’s) and a kind and caring heart just like her daddy. She is a great little big sister who just really enjoys life. No matter what she is doing she is doing it with a smile on her face. Unless of course I am asking her to help clean up, or it’s time to get ready for bed…then you will see the fiesty side of her that I love just as much if not more than her sweet side.
I have no idea what her 5th year has in store for us. I do know that we will enjoy every minute of it, because the years are flying by.
Happy Birthday Sweet Katy Girl!!
Monday, December 19, 2011
For many, the magic returns when you have children of your own, and I've had the opportunity to share that Christmas magic with Katy and Patrick for the last 5 years. Mike & I have had the privilege to be the ones providing the magic, We’ve been the one that has brought pure joy to their faces all the while letting Santa take the credit, it has been magical.
This year however, we found ourselves in a position where for the first time ever, we weren’t going to be able to provide that magic for our children. Life circumstances took it away from me, and while I'm sure we would have had a wonderful Christmas just the same spending time with family and friends, I would have felt like a failure. Not getting to see that joy on their faces on Christmas morning because, for the first time ever, we just didn't have the money to do it this year
It all started with an email from Katy’s dance teacher, shortly after our last hospital admission. She was asking what she could do and that she and her friends and family would like to help “Santa” out this year. My initial reaction was to politely decline. Then I realized that she most likely wouldn’t take no for an answer. So I put my pride aside and focused on Katy & Patrick and thought about their Christmas Wish Lists knowing there was no way to make all those wishes come true as we had in the years past. So I emailed her their lists and said just one thing would be such a blessing.
Well within 24 hours I had another message in my inbox…requesting more ideas. WHAT!?! The list I gave was pretty hefty for each child. I never in my wildest dreams could have imagined that they could fill all those requests and come back asking for more.
This is a tough year for a lot of families, and to think that people, strangers were willing to provide for my family all these “extras” blew me away. With each email I cried a bit more… happy tears, thankful tears.
Shortly after Thanksgiving it was time to pick everything up. Miss Paula tried to prepare me for the magnitude of their generosity…but honestly nothing could prepare me for what was there for my family. I literally backed into Santa’s Workshop. I had told myself not to cry…but I couldn’t help it.
Every.single. item on their wish list was there in addition to beautiful clothes, shoes, boots, diapers, wipes and an abundance of gift cards.
The gifts are now wrapped and thanks to the generosity of others, Katy & Patrick are going to have a wonderful Christmas. We are going to experience that special joy on Christmas morning. That indescribable, magical feeling. I am so thankful, they brought the true spirit of Christmas to my home.
I don't know how I can ever thank you . I've always believed in the spirit of Christmas, but this year, more than ever, the spirit has touched me and my family and I am just so overwhelmed and grateful. So for those that I have already thanked, thank you again, and for those that I haven't, thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Merry Merry Christmas
Mike, Amiee, Katy & Patrick
This year it seems like Elf On The Shelf has just become another mommy competition. I think it is a fun thing and Katy and Patrick really enjoy looking to see what Bubbles & Salsa were up to the night before. We try to keep a positive spin on it… we don’t really like to do the whole Santa is watching and you will be on the Naughty List.
It’s fun and there is no denying that the kids get a kick out of it.
Here are some of the crazy things our elves have done!
So for all the Elf Haters… Merry Christmas!! I bet you are the same people who claim to hate flowers on Valentine’s Day when yours don’t arrive.
Funny read: Over Achieving Elf on the Shelf Mommies
Saturday, December 17, 2011
I find myself filled with so many emotions this time of year. I think it is that way for a lot of people.
Christmas is a time to reflect on the year… to be merry and cheerful… to give more than you receive… to celebrate and kiss under mistletoe.
What do you do when the year you have to reflect on is the hardest year you have ever faced in your 30 years on earth? What do you do when you have nothing to give and yet are blessed with the kindness of strangers who just want to make Christmas magical for you and your family? What do you do when you would rather sleep than kiss your love under the mistletoe?
What do you do when the year you have to reflect on is the hardest year you have ever faced in your 30 years on earth?
I am reflecting on all the blessings that our family has been given. Katy is thriving at school and loving dance once again this year. Patrick is a school and has a place that is his own that he is loved on and comfortable and learning new things… it is his safe place when life gets crazy with hospital appointments and admissions. I am being reminded that people are good and want to do good. I am remembering all of our friends and family that have gotten us through this year and will get us through the next.
What do you do when you have nothing to give and yet are blessed with the kindness of strangers who just want to make Christmas magical for you and your family?
I am saying thank you…and praying for the day that we can one day Pay It Forward. I am using one of the gift cards that was given to us and buying the car behind me a cup of coffee… it hopes of making their day a bit brighter.
What do you do when you would rather sleep than kiss your love under the mistletoe?
You kiss because you know you are not going to be able to sleep anyway.
All of this is made easier when you have the luxury to see the Christmas through the eyes of your children. Katy & Patrick definitely make it easier to suck it up (for lack of a better word) They are so happy and excited for every little detail, and really their excitement is contagious.
So we do it all and we do it as BIG as we can. We don’t know what tomorrow may bring, but we know we have today. So today we are going to do it up and make the best memories.