Thursday, December 30, 2010

Baby Button

Looks healthy in there!

No problems with the bone lengths.
No problems with my amniotic fluid level.
No heart problems noted.  Heartbeat strong.
Ribs look like a normal babies.
Moving actively.
Chubby cheeks like brothers and sister.

And sticking his/her foot in mouth the whole ultrasound:


Can someone please explain?


Sunday, December 26, 2010

Merry Christmas

I am posting this a day late, but I have to show everyone!

  I finished Jamie's Christmas Stocking on Christmas EVE!!! 

 I debated making her a stocking, because it will hang empty every year....but I have put a lot of love in each family member's stocking that I thought why not?  When I asked the rest of the family last year, they didn't even blink...of course you are making her a stocking, they said!

All of the boys' stockings had Santa on it, and for some reason, when I chose my design, I had a snowman.  I had chosen it because it had a "quilted" look to it, so when I realized the boys had santas, and I was a girl and had a snowman....I had to find a snowman design for Jamie!

I have to tell you, I was adding the beads on Christmas Eve afternoon and JJ came down and saw that it was almost complete.  He exclaimed, "Mommy!  You have her stocking finished just in time for Santa to see it!!" How sweet is that!

I actually finished sewing the fleece to the back today so it actually did not get hung in time for Santa's arrival.
 But that is okay, he already saw it!

 I can now start thinking about Button's stocking.   I bought a stocking holder for Button this year since I bought a new one for Jamie.  
 Except, now I have to wait for him/her to arrive before I chose a Santa or a Snowman design. 

Any bets?

A Very Special Gift

Daddy did it again!  He always amazes me with his thoughtfulness.  We don't generally exchange a bunch of gifts.  We usually agree to spend something on the house.  Once in a while there is a small gift under the tree.  I usually put together a picture gift of some sort (framed photo or photo album). 

This year, the boys really wanted to get Dad a gift with me that he had his eye on (the Dremel Trio).  I didn't really expect anything under the tree because we are busy "updating" different things in the house to get ready for Button's arrival.

Instead, there were two tiny boxes for me!  A necklace charm and bracelet from James Avery!

Aren't they beautiful?

  Butterflies to remember my Jamie and they even have my favorite flowers......daisies!!!!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Quilt for the Kids

The newest blog I am following is Quilts for Kids.  Their goal was 52 quilts this year (one a week) and they just finished 54.


Hoping I can join in their fun somehow, or if not get inspired to do my own charity quilting!!!!!!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Quilt Hope In

I just became a follower of this blog:

  It is an organization that totally fits my bill. 


Need I say more?

I am really hoping I can find a way to either contribute items or my skills for such a great cause. 

 Shortly after losing Jamie, I knew that I needed to DO.  I have started a intenet support group that I monitor and I have embroidered blankets/quilts for babyloss mommas. 
But I want to do so much more. 

Every time I make something for someone, I try to take inspiration from their lives and remember that God has given me the gift to create things.  My little girl can't.

I am hoping I can help Quilt Hope In bring inspiration to those whose lives are less fortunate than mine.

BTW.....If I blog about this, I might win a Accuquilt GO! from one of the blogs I have been following.  I can't remember how I found her, but I love her stuff!  TraceyJay Quilts I never win anything.....but really would love to win this!!!

Monday, December 6, 2010

My Angel's Ornaments

 I am sure I don't need to explain why Christmas was difficult last year.

I actually wanted to scrub the whole holidays, but I couldn't because of the other three gorgeous darlings we have.  They don't deserve to have the rest of their lifes drenched in darkness.

The boys have been so supportive since the moment we told them that Jamie was "sick" even before she was born.  They had as much hope as we did.

I can honestly say that I was there when all three of my boys first had their hearts broken.  It was the day they had to say goodbye to their little sister.

Last year, we found this cute angel ornament.  It isn't fabulous, but it seemed the best way for us to be able to have her precious feet forever on our tree.  We were so in love with the perfection of her tiny feet!

This year, we wanted to get another ornament.

How precious is the saying "A sister loves you at all times"!!

This Christmas we hung her ornaments on a silk tree in our "angel" room. 

Really, it is just a formal living room that we have dubbed the "Library".  It is where we have our formal living room furniture, bookcases, and a secretary desk. 

We renamed it so that it became a more approachable room for us to use.  There is someone in it everyday.

Why our "angel" room?  I have the ashes of our puppies that have left  us and I have a few sweet angel statues in there.

So I hope to have her tree in there next year!

We are in transition of purchasing new trees and have decided to wait until next year to get a special tree just for all of her ornaments.

I have some old pearl and pink colored ball ornaments I plan to use.  And of course, I found some more beautiful pearl and green ornaments.

I can't wait to do a whole tree just for her!!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Christmas Cards

This isn't the photo we used for Christmas...have this one blown up to hang in our home!
Checkout Kristi O'Connell Photography if you are in the Houston area....we loved her work!!!

I am so sad....This is the first year I am not making a "homemade" Christmas card in (I think) 6 years.  Hubby convinced me to use Tiny Prints for our Holiday photo card.  Normally, I spend a few hours tweaking a photo on photoshop, then a day or two writing my Christmas letter, and then a week or two making about 150 cards for family, friends, and hubby's co-workers.

This year, we had a pretty nice coupon from Tiny Prints (sorry, can't divulge my sources on this one) and he insisted (for the reason that the source would be disappointed that we didn't use it!).  I will have to admit, it was fun to choose a template, but it still stabbed me in the heart!  And if you are interested, they are running a few good deals right now for the Holidays!

So I guess I will have to put my "Heidi" touch on my Christmas letter.  Maybe stamping or something?!?!?

P.S.  Today I finally showed my hubby my wee blog.  Now I have to watch my step!!!!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

My Special Surprise Today!

One of the dozen butterflies we released on Jamie's Birthday

Today, we received a letter from our oldest son.  He said it was a project he did in Religion class (have I mentioned how blessed we are to send our children to Catholic school!) 

The yellow ribbon that was tied around the piece of paper should have been a sign of how special it would be.  I opened it and at first glance noticed that it was written on a pink paper with pink roses and butterflies all over it!  Be still my heart, my moody thirteen year old pays attention!!!! 

The letter read:

Dear Mom and Dad,

Your blessings that you have bestowed upon me, have been generous and faithful.
I just want to say, that I love you and always will forever and ever.

I picked a psalm that was for a butterfly and was meant to be.
Blessed be God, who did not refuse me the kindness I sought in prayer.
Psalm 66:20.

Love J,
I Love You

Jamie, our darling butterfly, you are not always just on mommy and daddy's mind, but your sweet older brothers' also! 

And if you are wondering about the butterfly release in the picture,  
We can't say enough about The Butterfly Release Company
We were able to have a special inscription on the "envelopes".  We followed their exact delivery instructions and all of our butterflies arrived intact and made Jamie's 1st Birthday an unbelievable memory!!!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Jamie's Christmas Tree

   The craziness of the Christmas holidays are upon us.  I am having a tough time this year.  You would think with this "rainbow" baby on its way, that I would be happy.  Again, a perfect example why another little one can't replace the one who is gone.

    A little tree for our Jamie.  I will confess, I made this last Christmas.  I have so many projects in the works, that I don't have a single completed project to share! 

   I thought it was a good one to share considering she is so on my mind this month.  Here's to starting this a second holiday season without her. 

   JJ and I painted this plastic/resin tree that I picked up from Hobby Lobby last year.  We used layers of different pink paints to get different shades of pink.  We hot glued crystal and silver balls on after it dried. Then we used some cool paint called Snow-Tex by Deco Art.  It was so fun and cute to see little, big brother do something for his baby sister.  And it looks great next to her urn in my bedroom.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Rainbow Disappeared in the Clouds

The cross made by JJ's class.  Made a book with scrapbook paper from Jamie's album
A babyloss momma's rainbow baby left us today.  His big sister passed away last year when she arrived too early.  Now he is following her at only 19 weeks.  His little heart went silent today.

His mother's heart is aching.

Why does this matter?   It matters because Baby Button is our Rainbow baby.

What is a Rainbow baby?   "Rainbow Babies" is the understanding that the beauty of a rainbow does not negate the ravages of the storm. When a rainbow appears, it doesn't mean the storm never happened or that the family is not still dealing with its aftermath. What it means is that something beautiful and full of light has appeared in the midst of the darkness and clouds. Storm clouds may still hover but the rainbow provides a counterbalance of color, energy and hope. 

One of the 25 cards we recieved from his class.

I can't take credit for this most amazing, insightful, and just plain beautiful definition. 

It occurred to me that I have tried to distance myself with this child on its way...sooner than later.  I now realize that I thought if I pretended not to be attached, that it wouldn't matter if something happened to my rainbow.   What a fool I was! 

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Birthday Blues

A year ago today, we had a memorial funeral for Jamie.   A year ago yesterday was her due date.  Two days from now is my birthday.

I think I might really hate my birthday now.  I told my husband that I really don't like my birthday anymore.  It brings nothing but disappointment.  And actually, I have never really liked it.

This isn't a new concept for me, me being disappointed.  Growing up in the Chicago/Milwaukee area, the day used to be dingy, dark, and possibly accompanied with cold rain.  As a child, my parents did not have a lot of money.  My gifts were never extravagant.  I never had birthday parties.  But I am okay with that.  I understand the difficulties.

These past 14 years, we have creeped our way further South.  The days are nicer.  But as an adult, I have had the privilege of my family "forgetting" my birthday.  There is more often, than not, an empty mailbox.  Definitely devoid of a gift...most of the time, not even a card. 

My husband does not win any prizes in the birthday department.  He is often out of town...much like he will be this week.  I guess that is what happens when you have your birthday right before Thanksgiving.  Business must get done before we sit down to eat turkey!!!  I cannot recall a single memorable gift that he has given me.

Except........last year's.  He and the boys went shopping for a charm bracelet at one of my favorite stores James Avery.  They bought five heart charms.  One for each of them, the three boys, my husband, and they even included my darling baby girl!   They chose a plain heart so that her name could be engraved on it.  It is so beautiful and a day never goes by that I am not wearing it.

But still.......I dread my coming birthday.  I should have a bouncy one year old blond baby girl in my lap.  I should be anticipating her first step or if she was like her brothers, she would be already running and I would be chasing her these coming holidays.  We should have been sharing this month for our birthdays, like I share it with my mother.  Instead, she was born in October because we both were not doing well.  Instead, she is in an urn, instead of in my arms.

I really don't have high expectations for this week........

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Baby Button

My little button.  One of the inspirations of starting this blog.  My Jamie is my butterfly because she flew away.  This beautiful baby on its way....please God have this one come home with me in my arms.....we have named Button. 

The boys and Jamie's real names begin with J's and ironically, their "pet" names from me start with B's.  Why do I have pet names?  I am one of those mommies that don't know if I am going to have a boy or a girl.  I have kept the gender/sex reveal a surprise for myself and everyone we know until they arrive five times now.  Why?  Because there aren't many REAL surprises in life anymore.  Even Christmas isn't the same as an adult!!!  The real reason I don't find out?  I have learned from my L&D nursing days that it is never a guarantee that these precious packages come home with us.  Does it matter if they are a boy or girl?  No, it only matters that they arrive safe and sound.

My Bunny helped me pick out this little one's nickname.  I like Button, because I loooove buttons.  They represent so much to me!  I use them when I sew.  I use them when scrapbooking, and I have even made some jewelry pieces with Buttons.  I also like the fact that this baby has "fastened" his/herself into my life.  This baby means so much, in so many ways.

Button has brought out a new view for me.  That there is joy out of pain.  There is hope out of agony.  There is happiness beyond grief.  This child is a not our Jamie, but this child might never have been here if I hadn't lost my Jamie. 

So I bought (sigh....not made) a blanket for our button.  The only purchase I have made, and probably the only one I will make before Button arrives.  I decided to embroider "Cute as a Button" on it in nuetral colors.  The boys and hubby loved it.  I think hubby is a little jealous that I bought it on my own, so I think I will make it up to him and have him go shopping with me for baby's first outfit.  So I guess there is a little shopping in our future...but not much.  I can't do a whole nursery without fear that it might be empty when I come home in a few months.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


The hunt for the ladder.  A hunt, you say?  Yes...literally a long, excruciating hunt for the past 3 years.  Cyberstalking, catalog searching, mall shopping, furniture stores, design stores, antique stores, and yes...even checking out garbage piles.

When we moved into our new house three years ago, my goal was to complete my Studio first.  My Studio?  Yes, a high-falutin word for my craft room.  But doesn't every good artist call it a studio?  Hubby and the boys enjoyed making fun of it, but I have used it and My Room interchangeably for the past three years, it has started to stick. 

As I completed it, my goal was to have a place to showcase my quilts.  Okay my "future" quilts.  Why do I say future? I really must admit, that I have stacks and stacks of want-to-do quilts, but just didn't want to clutter every chair and couch with quilts!  So I decided I wanted an old ladder.  I love the rustic look, I have a bunch of rustic bird houses, and I just think it is fitting to my personality.  Climbing out of the pit I have been in.  Not perfect, but rough around the edges like me.  A bit paint splattered like my heart...still beating, still strong, but just a little tarnished with grief.

Finally, Pottery Barn had a ladder.  But I won't even describe how much it was going to cost me.  Especially when I decided I wanted a second one for my family room.  I wanted to be able to decorate it with holiday quilts.  I was about to cry, until I decided to check a website I found 3 years ago.  It made me weary because it wasn't as flashy as many other websites I shop from.  But when I saw their prices and the fact that the two ladders with shipping would cost me less than one very small one from PB, I decided to take a leap of faith.  Kind of like the one we made to try to have another child.

They arrived today.  Better than I ever expected.  A little crooked, definitely rustic, and completely perfect for what I wanted!  What do you think!

I also thought I would show you my infamous "Studio".  Do you think it is worthy of it's name?

My Studio/Craft Room...LOVE my Island.  Great for any and all projects

My "sitting" side.  I set up my sewing machines (which I store in the closet when not in use), jewelry making, stamping, and the right corner is where my boys have the upper and lower cabinet overflowing with kid craft items!  The larger cabinet on the left holds my scrapbooking paper, album page/page protectors, my Sissix die-cut machine...and some quilting rulers...odds and ends!


The WORK side!  Computer, printer, office supplies!  Gift wrapping, card making, Cricut machine are all hidden in the cabinets.  My ribbon and large sized Sissix die-cuts find a home on an old ribbon rack!

The Cozy Corner....My chair and a half that actually folds out to a twin mattress! The blankets/sheets are stored in my ottoman!  I love this mini-couch.  A lot of crosstitching, needlework, hand sewing done on that cushy seat!  And quite a few naps!!!!!!!



Monday, November 1, 2010

All Saint's Day

Today is All Saint's Day.  And I am grateful for the Communion of Saints.  For those who don't know what that is, I will give it to you in Heidi speak...don't take this as a direct quote from our Catechism!  The Communion of Saints is the belief that all of our loved ones that depart us become members of a community in heaven.  A very special community that is waiting and praying for those who are still wading through all the details of life down here.   A community that we can pray for intercession to.  Especially when we need some help bending God's ear.

Today is a day that always reminds me of why it is hard to be a Catholic. I have always found it to be difficult to be Catholic in our society.  I know to some, this might sound crazy, but I often feel very persecuted for my beliefs.  I have often wondered if it would be better to be Jewish.  No one seems to question their faith or disrespect their faith as much as I feel other Christians disrespect and question mine.  I have often been told that because I am Catholic...I am not Christian.  That is like a knife to the heart.  How awful to say that the oldest church is not Christian?  I always feel like I should defend my religion.  I say I feel like it, but I don't.  It just isn't worth the heartache of getting into a debate, especially when it involves good friends of ours.

Now, after the loss of a daughter, the question of faith and religion is a constant topic on my mind.  I am a realist in so many ways.  The nurse in me is so scientific and rationale.  But the nurse in me is also so sensitive to the things that can't be explained.

 I have empathy for those who are agnostic or are atheist after a loss.  How can you not be?  How can these repetitive or horrible losses be explained?  How can any of our religions justify what seems to be insanity?  Why so much pain for women who want a child or want to keep the child that they have created...something that all religions agree is an important aspect of our faith lives.  The procreation of children from a marriage.  Marriage being one of the holiest sacraments that couples can participate in.  Why would God want to deny couples that are righteously fulfilling our covenant with God?

But there you have it.  God working in his ever mysterious way.  I really hope that there is a Communion of Saints, because that would mean that Jamie is up there with the best of them, St. Anne of Seton, St. Jude, St. Francis of Assissi and so on. 

I hope she is up there praying and waiting for the rest of us to join her, otherwise, all of "this" life is for nothing...........

Monday, July 19, 2010

If only he made the bed.....perfection!

Fourteen years and four kids ago, I married a young man.   I was 21 and he was 22 on that day. So young!!!  Yes, we have gone through our trials.  We have learned to accept our frailties and weaknesses along with each other's strengths.  When our boys ask us how they will know they are marrying the right girl, we both say "you have to love her for her faults as well as her virtues!"

He made concessions when my job had to be first.  We marched to the Army's tune together.  When it was his "turn", I was his biggest chearleader.  We have had our share of drama with our families and friends.  We have moved nine times and cannot believe our luck to have been in one place the last seven years!  We have lost pets and family members.  We have fought, cried, laughed, and loved.

We went to dinner the other night for our "celebration".  Since quiet time is so precious, we were able to commiserate on how busy our lives have been ever since.  We often say that we don't get a "break".  But in reality, who would want one?!?!

Of course, at some point Jamie Lynn came up in our conversation. It is amazing how the loss of a child can make a couple closer.  Every day I hear the horrifying statistics of divorce rates of couples who have lost a child.  For us, her death has forged the bond stronger.

I have felt my love evolve and mature over the years.  I realize that there is still some work to be done.  I just hope I am able to still say that the young boy who is now an amazing man is my everything for years to come.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


On Easter Sunday, after returning from church, I asked God to give me a sign that day.  Please God, tell me that you are there, so I know that I will see my Jamie Lynn again.  Please tell me that my faith in You makes sense.

He answered with a butterfly quietly landing in a field of wildflowers next to our home.  

Since Easter, I have had many visits from butterflies.  Daily and more than once a day.
Butterflies single, gliding on the wind.  Pairs fluttering together.  One lands on a pot nearby.  Another steps into some avacado dip. "Why, yes, help yourself Mr. Butterfly."

They come in all, yellow-orange, dark yellow, light yellow, yellow with spots, orange with spots.  Black with orange stripes.  Black with yellow stripes. 

Butterflies in the early morning as I sip my coffee.  I close my eyes to bask in the afternoon sun.  When I open them, two zig-zag in the near distance.   A butterfly lands on my shoulder as I contemplate a sunset. 

Butterflies flitter-flutter around the boys as they frolic in the yard.  They are oblivious to the perfection of the scene.

Butterflies when I think of her. When I am not thinking of remind me.  
Daddy taps my shoulder.  He points.  I smile.  Of course.  Another butterfly.  We smile at each other. 

It is our little secret, Butterfly.

"Enter each day with the expectation that the happenings of the day may contain a clandestine message addressed to you personally. Expect omens, epiphanies, casual blessings, and teachers who unknowingly speak to your condition."
 --Sam Keen

Friday, May 28, 2010

In the Jungle

the mighty jungle.....the lions sleep tonight.
The house is still, the monkeys are in there beds.  The lion is in his den snoring off the day's work.  I am the lioness, hunting in the night.  Hunting for answers that I know can never be answered.
Why her?  Why us?  Why?
The night is still.  Pacing does no good. Time to just wait for the sun to rise.

Thursday, April 29, 2010


Even six months after losing my Jamie, I have heard the whole gammit.  I even read that I needed to forgive someone for my loss...i.e. forgive the drunk driver, etc. 

But I kept thinking, who am I supposed to forgive?  God?  But all say that He didn't do this. 

Why would God purposely give my daughter a fatal condition?  To have me carry her? 

Yes, I understand...but why give so much pain?

SOOO, three things have happened just this week!!!

1.  I read a post by a mom who also had a child with a fatal condition.  She said...."Thank you God for taking my child so he would not suffer in this world."

 WOW!  God didn't do this to my is just one of those things that happen on this Earth.  God saved my baby from living with her horrible condition...suffering on this Earth.

2.  I read in a book..."The God I know has experienced pain and torment and therefore understands my pain.  The Incarnation means that God cares so much that he chose to become human and suffer loss, though he never had to.  He is not aloof from my suffering, but draws near to me when I suffer. "

3.  I just recieved a beautiful letter from a friend and in it he spoke of  a bible class he was a part of.  A man in his class stood up and said ."A message prepared in the mind reaches minds, a message prepared in the heart reaches hearts, but a message prepared in a life reaches lives." The man then proceeded to tell the story of the loss of their child 13 years ago.  He described how his wife spends much of her time ministering to those who also are devastated.

All three of those things have made me go Hmmmm.  And I have had a bit of a better skip in my step.  In the end, it is our choice to have faith in Him.

Faith "that we find joy in our trials".

Monday, April 5, 2010


No one likes the sad girl. They want the happy girl to come back.

I am drowning.  Drowning in all of my responsibilities, sadness, pain, along with my hopes and dreams.  Swimming towards the dock, but being grabbed by some unknown forces, deep at the bottom of the lake.  The weight of the water is sometimes too much to bear.   I can gasp at the top of the water for a second, but then I am violently yanked under.  Sometimes it seems easier to stay under.

I dream of floating aimlessly, camly again.  How can I ever do that, if I can't reach the top of the water and take a full breathe of air.

Dear God, can you please throw me a life vest?

Friday, March 19, 2010


The rides are bright and colorful.  People are smiling, laughing, eating as they wait in lines.  The games are noisy.  Delightful, happy screaming can be heard in the distance.  The rides move quickly and frenetically. Huge stuffed animals hang from the arms of big, burly men.  There are tears on little ones that just can't seem to win the coveted prize.  Sticky fingers.  Food encrusted mouths.  Babies crashed out in their strollers.  Moms that are irritated with the child that just doesn't seem to listen.  Mom and dads with cameras hanging from their necks in hopeful anticipation of the lasting memory. Moms that are drinking in the sight of their child's first pony ride.   Dads proud of their children for riding that scary rollercoaster.  Teenagers moving in packs, oblivious to the world around them. Little girls running with pig tails and colorful dresses.  Little boys with tussled hair, wearing their jeans and cowboy boots. 

A little girl with wispy blonde hair and the sweetest dress, passes by me.  Her thumb in her mouth and her other hand tugging her ear.  She looks right at me.  She could be my Jamie.

Jamie should be here for her first carnival. 

 She should be bright eyed and taking in all of the sounds and sights. 

She should be here....

Monday, March 1, 2010

Marriage: A Fragile Union

It occurred to me yesterday that marriage is such a fragile union.  No matter how strong the relationship, it seems to be so easily broken. 

Yesterday, we found out news that some friends of ours are getting a divorce.  We did not see it coming.  This was a couple that would constantly show public affection, not the inappropriate kind, but the kind that you sometimes wish you had more of with your own spouse.  We don't know the details, but they have three beautiful, young boys and for whatever reason, are going to tear their family apart. 

I am stunned.  I am confused.  I am concerned.  What does it take to break a family apart?  What happens to a couple that they can sit their children down and say, "Your dad and I can't live together anymore". 

I don't pretend to be naive.  I am a product of a young divorced couple.  I can say I have survived, but I survived without my father being a part of my life.  The marriage was so broken, that the aftermath caused my father to walk away.  He felt that it was better to let my mom have peace then to have the constant "fight" they had even unmarried.

I look at my husband of 13 years.  I am scared.  Our oldest son turned 13 yesterday.  We have a teenage son!  I look at my three sons and cannot fathom what would crush this family.  I have always said that I would leave my husband if he ever cheated on me or hurt me. But yesterday, I even dared to tell my husband that if he had an adulterous affair, that I would probably be broken, but wouldn't be able to leave him.  I love him that much.  I need him that much.

He shook his head, walked out of the room.  Then he returned, with Jamie Lynn's tiny heart urn with her ashes, cradled in his hands, and said, "This is why I will never do something to hurt you or ever leave you." 

I think I fell in love with him all over again.