Friday, February 27, 2015

Dresses and Sacraments... ohhh... ahhh...

I'm so glad it's Friday!  I'm looking forward to so much this weekend.  And so much of nothing.  I wish there was a storm brewing... a whopper of a snowstorm.  You know how I love those!  There's a bit of something on the seven day forecast but my guess is that it'll pass or we'll just get a dusting.

Tomorrow we're are going First Communion dress shopping.  I just might not sleep.  Like really!  I've been looking forward to this since I heard, "it's a girl!"  It's not just any dress.  It's one goodness gracious special dress.

Both of my girls wore the same amazing Baptism dress.  It's an heirloom (from Ireland). (& I'm too lazy today and busy to drag up a photo of their Baptism... just trust me the dress was & is incredible)

And then when it was time for Anna's First Communion I bought a beautiful dress knowing that Abigail would wear it.  But Abigail is still wearing a size 5 (on a good day) and so Anna's literally falls off of her.





I was teeny tiny at this age too so I tried MY First Communion dress on Abigail.  And mostly, it fit.  I still adore it.  And even made the girls wash their hands before touching it.  I love love love vintage dresses and really thought about making my dress work for Abigail.  But there was just something not quite "Abigail" about it.  All I can can see is "me" in that dress.  And the wonderful flood of memories from that holy day.  (and my Mom said that if she wore it we'd have to do something about the sleeves)

(quick iphone pics to my mom)



So off to shopping we are going.  I had to find a store that carries size 4 and 5.  Most First Communion dresses start at size 8.  And I found a store near New York City.  Oh I can hardly wait.  Their website promised only 100% silk and gorgeous dresses.  None of that yucky mini wedding dresses for me.  Wish us luck.  And see you all on Monday!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

First Snow

Back when all we had was a 'point and shoot' camera we took these of Anna.  It was her first time in the snow.

I remember that it was Friday night one evening in the late fall when the flakes started coming down.


Only two young parents would think their baby/toddler would want to go out to 'experience' that.  I've learned a lot since then. She was happy because I was happy.

But it was just so thrilling for us to have a baby, a family, our own little family. We loved every 'new thing' with her.


I never want to get to the point where I don't realize that a 'miracle' is living under my roof. She's an eleven year old, changing girl. She's really little but sometimes struggles with and wants to be big. (I guess they all do that at all of their stages and ages) I never want to grow lazy in my love for her. I never want to not be thrilled to be with her. I prayed for her. Waited for her. My very soul ached for her. And now she is here. Still here. Living happily as my daughter. She is still my miracle.


PS ~ yup, we used to have a darling dog named Chester. And just in case you wanted to see what he looked like...


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Sunday Afternoon


You are not going to believe me.  This idea popped into my head on the way home from Mass on Sunday afternoon.  It was a balmy 38 out.  That is sooooo warm for Connecticut in February.  Last night it was below 0.  That is more normal around here.  So when I felt the sunshine and warm air after Mass I couldn't help but think we've got to get out!  I was thinking, I wish we could have a picnic outside.  And then it dawned on me, we could.  And all of a sudden we were home.  I was carting the little table outside and making mitten sandwiches.  And this is what I came up with.


I had all the food already in the house. Just had to warm soup up. I got it piping hot knowing that it would cool off fast outside and I wanted them to eat something warm.





My Grandma Sullivan gave me this Wedgwood Strawberry China when Scott and I got engaged back in 1994. I remember opening it up on Christmas Eve... Scott sitting next to me.


And them my parents bought me the matching tea pot when they went to London years ago.


"If you are cold, tea will warm you; If you are too heated, it will cool you; If you are depressed, it will cheer you; If you are excited, it will calm you"
  ~ William Gladstone 


I told the girls to stay in their church clothes and I brought things out one at a time.  (while Scott kept an eye on the food so the birds didn't have their own tea party.





They were so excited and I don't think they really beleved that I was giong to let them eat outside in the winter.






You can tell that I was 'putting it together' as it was going on. I ran in to add more props as it went along. (I'm not one to think it through before... when I get an idea I want to do it NOW) So I added in the hat and the gloves.


And her moose muff


My favorite picture... It's their faces... how they always look... together.  I am so grateful for them.


Yup, it was good! Finger lickin good!



Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Chinese New Year

We didn't celebrate big this year but we did celebrate.  And I got out the China silks.  And oh boy... Anna wore this year the one I wore when I came home from China.  She has outgrown all of her child sized and has moved on to look gorgeous in the ones I brought home for me!

We brought Chinese food to my parents house and my Mom set the table beautifully.  (and gave them red envelopes with B&N gift cards) Anna was 'all lit up' and asking for us to tell us "her story" so I did (we all did) over Chinese food.


I told her how when we got her referral.  And all about our travels to China before her.  And the day (oh the day) we were finally together.  She was beaming.  It was simple.  But for this year, for us, it was the perfect Chinese New Year.


I meant to take a picture of Anna leaving that day. She looked so grown up and beautiful (and the snow was coming down) but I didn't. Next year for sure!


Monday, February 23, 2015

Update on Eosinophilic Esophogitis

This is the way Abigail looked last night when she was sleeping.

Abigail Sleeping

But before she went to sleep she told me, "mama, I have that EE feeling. It feels like there's something burning coming up half way."

I told her I'd lay with her extra long.

Often at night Abigail tells me she thinks she's going to throw up. And she looks like she is. You know, as a mom how your child looks right at that moment. Often she doesn't. But she feels sick.

At her last endoscopy her eosinophil levels here considered "extreme".

When we hear results like that we are devastated for her. Knowing that eosinophil levels that are high are painful. Painful to swallow, causing reflux, doing damage to her esophogus.

Her gastroenterologist has us up her meds but that is really all we can do to manage this chronic disease.

This week her heath needs are forefront in my mind as I make calls, leave messages, make sure my cell volume is high enough to hear a call from her doctor.  I'm waiting to her the next step.  Another change in meds?  When is the next endoscopy?  Can you do a write up on that last endo and blood work for her school nurse?

And then I walk in and she looks like that.  Worry and to dos wash away with the peace on her face.

This weekend we watched "Chimpanzees" by Disney.  We love the Disney nature movies.  In this one a baby chimps mama died and by the end of the movie the older chimp male leader who never even looks at babies 'adopted' the orphan chimp.  It was such beautiful camera work and editing.  Watching the baby chimp fall asleep in the old male chimps arms Abigail said, "God always has a plan."  She was munching pizza and said it as if it was the most normal thing in the world to say.  But Scott and I looked at each other knowing that the gift of her deep faith will serve her well in life.

She's something that Abigail.  And I am so blessed, so very blessed to be her mama.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Another Storm

I love winter.  I do.  I wouldn't live in Connecticut if I didn't love winter.  Sure, I love spring too but I love cozy and cozy is winter.

So really I'm not complaining when I type "another storm".  Scott says it's because I'm inside while he's outside getting ice and snow off the roof to save our gutters.  He's right.  Cozy and warm.


So we're supposed to get another storm tomorrow and I'm happy.

Last weekend it was doing this outside... huge monster winds...


But Scott picked up some new paints and some fun new brushes on the way home Friday. (and a few things to paint)


So the girls painted for two hours.



We played games


and napped


I baked


and the winter winds howled


Spring will come. Under all of that snow are tulip bulbs just waiting for the melting and the sun. There is always so much to look forward to. It's enjoying the now that is important I think. Happy weekend! Happy 'another' storm!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Happy Chinese New Year

~ from my little China doll and me

baby anna

* and I'm not going to go on and on about how I wish I could hold her on my hip just like that... just one more day
* and how I loved that little sweet summer jumper with the Peter Pan Collar
* and how tired she looks in that photo... can I just rock her sweaty head to sleep?
* and sing her songs?
* instead of her walking home from Middle School right now... I'm not going to go on and on... see... I didn't