Wednesday, November 30, 2011

temporary traditions

We are not getting our traditional tree this year. We won't be getting our traditional luminaries. One of my very favorite times of the year is Christmas Eve. Over the past 7 years we have created such an amazing and warm tradition. In the past years, we eat an early dinner and the kids get in their PJ's. We get into the car, turn on the Christmas music and drive around to look at all the glorious lights. The Luminaries make it even more magical that night. When you drive past peoples homes, you can look in and see families gathered together laughing and hugging and it just seems so magical and simple.

This year we will be in Memphis. One thing I do know is that it will be an amazingly special and very different holiday. It will be ok though! We will be together. What more do I need? Nothing. Nothing at all. For what ever reason (and we WILL know it one day) we are supposed to be there. We are supposed to meet the people we are about to meet. We are supposed to have this happening. I was awake for a long time last night. The comments I have gotten on the blog, on Facebook, in the mail and in my email inbox were swirling in my head. I just kept thinking about how all of you are supposed to be in our lives for a reason right now. If everyone going through something had half of the amount of support we did right now, they would call themselves blessed! Despite all we are going through right now, we still feel so blessed. Right now, the bump is GONE. We have each other. We are spending lots of quality time together right now. More then we ever get to normally. Plus, of course we are truly embracing the importance of it all.

Carolyn had a great idea. In lieu of getting a big tree, she found two tiny trees for the kids rooms. Pink and sparkles all the way for Kayla. Blue and cool just for Anthony. SUCH a great idea. Not to mention what cool night lights they make! We waited for her girls to get home from kindergarten and then we had so much fun decorating.  So, while Bieber played in the background, we got a little into the spirit.

Anyone see a pig in there?
My mom stopped by with some more thoughtful surprises for us including some hand made hats from Vera. Vera is 85 yrs old and lives across the street from my mom. She has known me since I was 6! She felt like knitting would be appropriate. She is so cute!

Denny is happy with his hat. We might still need to shop for something a little warmer for TN. though. ;) And Diana, I am SO glad you sent multiple pink toe socks. He is going to wear through these babies fast! I made sure to take a few cute pics of Kayla in her hat too. I LOVE these pics!!

Later on, Kolleen dropped by with a very special gift. A healing quilt! It is absolutely gorgeous!!! Denny said it even smells like a healing quilt. We LOVE it. Kayla was already asleep when we saw it, but we can't wait to show her when she wakes up. She will love this forever!! So will we!!!! Look at how amazing people are. People are GOOD and gracious. Kris & Cate... THANK YOU!!!!

Update from St. Judes: 
Our paperwork was received! All the foot work was WORTH it! It made it there safe and sound. They have started Kayla's chart. We are hoping the slides arrive on Friday so they can mull over her diagnosis over the weekend and get a plan to us on Monday. Again... Friday. What is it with Fridays??? Darn it. I like saying TGIF. I guess I will have to come up with a new day! It's looking like Wednesday or Thursday we will be flying out and starting this journey. Still getting the ducks in a row here... but it's happening!


  1. Denny is as cute as Kayla in these pics, especially his feet! ;) We are so glad all is running smoothly this week and you are able to relax, relax, relax! The Christmas trees are adorable! We will have to do the same for Isabella's room next year (when she learns not to pull all the ornaments off!).
    You not only have many supporters in the US, but many friends and family in Brazil and Chile as well! They have been following your story as well and are thinking and praying for you all! We love you! Diana, Tomaz and Isabella

  2. What a beautiful quilt! I know it will provide a lot warmth and love at St. Jude's. And I love the Christmas trees. When I show the pictures to Claire, she will have Christmas tree envy.
    Annie, I wanted to pass on to you that a close family friend did her post-doctorate pharmacy work at St. Jude's specializing in pediatric research. When I told her about Kayla, she told me that St. Jude's is the absolute best place to go for treatment. She was very happy to hear that Kayla was accepted. Kayla is clearly on the road to recovery!
    Thinking of you all and will not stop the prayers. Love, Melissa

  3. Beautiful pics and gifts and angels in all of them! Is is okay if I "stop by" one of these days before you guys leave? I would really like to see you all before this big journey begins. I seriously will wear a mask, gloves, trash bag, whatever you need so that I can be present with you all and show my love before you go. I am healthy, no worries! Please text me and let me know! I love you all so very much!

  4. Your welcome! Your daughter and family were my inspiration (and your friends). I kept reading what a "Rock Star" she was being through all of this and then it became my mission to create her a rock star quilt to keep her warm in her recovery and remind her how brave and strong she is! The bright yellow stars are her! And without Cate doing the beautiful quilting (that binds the top filling and back together) it would still not be done because my skills end at piecing. It was definitely a team effort with Cate. My thoughts are with you and your family. I will be visualizing Kayla holding a bat and whacking the you know what out of her troubles! Take care have a safe journey to Tennessee.

  5. We have been following the blog from day one and are truly amazed at how remarkable Kayla is doing! Although it wasn't until today that were were able to join as members because we are just not too tech-savvy around here:) Our prayers are many and our love for your family is enormous! We are here for you in anyway you need us...Dave is MORE than THRILLED he can help with the numbers. We are humbled by your strength and determination with this process. Your families love for each other and the love of the community are so great...we love you and will miss you during your time in TN.

  6. What a wonderful quilt! I am so glad you have so much support for you and your family out there. I wish you were closer so I could be right there supporting you along with your wonderful friends and family. But please know, I have a whole crew of East Coast-ers sending you lots of love and good thoughts. We're here for you - even if we're 3000 miles away!


  7. So glad you like the quilt. :) Kris did a beautiful job designing and piecing. When I got it for quiling I kept thinking about Kayla getting well and put as much of my "ju ju" into that quilt as I had so I guess Denny picked up that energy. Yay! Wishing you all much love and hoping those heart filled fairies bring Kayla a smile. Cate

  8. I can't wait for her to wrap herself in the warmth, love and healing that is surrounding her and your family. I know you got a picture, can't wait to see her smile!!!!

    Thank you Kris and Cate it was so incredibly unique and thoughtful. I can't say enough about the sparkles and the PURPLE fairies, it's breathtaking!

  9. Love, love, love all the pix and stories of family & friends time. The Xmas trees are so perfect and the Quilt is just the BEST. Purple delicate blonde fairies (Kayla) with 12 HUGE STARS.....the many guides that will be with her assisting/supporting her on this journey.

    The Dr Seuss saying on the back is genius----for the use of the power of our mentally imagine beating the 'bad cells' out of her body or 'bashing' them like an unwanted bug. Sometimes computer games are used to help the mental process of 'cleaning up' the path so to 'win' such as the oldest pak-man gobbling up the balls in his/her way so to travel to the 'home' site. The games are diversionary too! Our mental strengths and imaging contribute to the physical battles our bodies are waging.

    With every new entry, there is good news about support and progress as well as the much needed family fun n love time......Hooray!
    Prayers n love continue to be sent daily