Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween 2011

I've thought a lot today about what this post would be like....or if I would even post something at all.  It's been one of those days filled with mixed emotions that make me feel a little lost.

October 31st.  Halloween.  Another month since I held our little girl.  Talk about a double whammy.

Facebook is full of pictures of little kids posing in costumes, the candy aisle at the grocery store was packed with last minute shoppers, and in an hour or so little princesses and ghosts will start showing up at our door looking for goodies.

Last year I was so excited for Halloween...this year I don't know what I am.

So while I didn't know what words I would use to describe how I feel today, I was convinced that they would be pouty.  I knew that I would come here and vent and cry and be an angry, jealous, hurting mommy without a child to dress up to take trick-or-treating.

Then, as I was walking out to my car I got a message from Cora's mom with a link to her blog.

And I smiled.

I was reminded that we are not alone in this.
There are people out there in similar shoes walking similar paths.
There are people who are thinking of us on days like today.
There are people who are praying for us.

Last year Charlotte was a bear.  This year she is an angel.

When we were back in Omaha this past weekend Matt and I went to a pumpkin carving party at my sisters.  The kids all got to carve their own pumpkins....ok, who am I kidding....the adults all "got" to carve the pumpkins FOR the kiddos.  There were ghosts, spiderwebs, Angry Birds and this special little pumpkin...
 My sister snapped this awesome picture.  I love how the heart glows in the darkness.
And I can't forget about this one!  Some of our friends and their 2 boys took Miss Charlotte her own little pumpkin.  There is a pretty cool story behind this one.  One of the boys actually "won" this pumpkin at school when his name was drawn.  Want to know WHO drew his name?  His friend Charlotte!  How sweet that they decorated it just for her.  Thanks Pospisils!

You sure are loved little girlie!  Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

A Week Full of Pictures {4}

This post was supposed to go up on Friday to complete my week of pictures, but apparently time got away from me.  Matt and I just got back from a great weekend with family in friends in Omaha and I wanted to get this post up before I forgot!  

Charlotte was a always a little peanut.  Maybe it was all of the coffee that was stunting her growth?  We all needed a little extra caffeine on cath mornings.
Sporty Spice.  She looked so stinkin' cute in her Nike sweats, tennis shoes and a ponytail!
There are not many things cuter than a baby fresh out of bed.  Here is Charlotte still in her jammies,  with crazy hair and eyes that are still a little squinty and trying to wake up.  Oh what I wouldn't give for some early morning snuggles.
I LOVE this picture.  Charlotte got slippers as a Christmas gift from daycare last year.  I put them on her  fully expecting that she would pull them off right away to get a better look at Pooh, but she was perfectly content with them on her feet.  And doesn't she have the cutest little profile??
This picture is actually from Matt's phone.  I didn't know that it even existed until about a month ago.  I love how she is resting her chin on her little hand....deep in thought.
And here it is.  The last phone picture that I ever took of our baby girl.  My eyes fill up with tears every time that I see it.  I hate knowing that its the last.  There will be no more.  It was a gloomy day the Saturday before Charlotte earned her wings and to get out of the house we decided to go for a walk at the mall.  While Daddy was checking out at the Gap, Charlotte and I played by a mirror.  I had her giggling pretty good, but she kept looking over toward Matt to see if he was watching!  


Sigh.  I miss her so much.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

A Week Full of Pictures {3}

As promised...MORE PICTURES!

Our incredibly smart little girl decked out in her Yankee gear. 
I love how her hat is tilted to the side...it makes her look extra "thug"! 
 Holy Cow!  LOOK AT THOSE EYES!
 Charlotte was so happy when it finally got warm enough to spend time outdoors.  I believe that both the hat AND the glasses were ripped off about 0.5 seconds after I snapped this picture!
 Ok.  This picture makes me crack up every time I see it.  The way that Charlotte is leaning to the side in combination with the look on her face makes it look like she spent the day at the bar rather than at daycare!  So stinkin' funny!
 Sigh.  My little ladybug.  Charlotte never got to strut her stuff at the swimming pool and I'm so glad that we got this picture when we did.  Now if only she'd been wearing the matching hat!
 Just your average, everyday monkey hug. 
 Charlotte loved her paci, but she could not keep it in her mouth at night for the life of her.  Translation, every 10 minutes we would end up going into her nursery to "plug her in."  Finally I got tired of it and just took the thing away.  Much to my surprise, she did very well.  THEN, we went back to Children's for surgery in January and low and behold, I caved and gave her the paci to help keep her settled in the scary situation.  When it was time to come home though, the paci was left behind.  Much to my surprise, a few months later I came into the living room and found the little stinker with a PACI!  It must have been buried at the bottom of her bin of toys.  Sneaky, sneaky little lady....
 Long waits at the doctor's office?  Name badges on retractable holders are the perfect solution! 
 There is just something about this picture that always melts my heart.  The cute zipper shirt?  The crazy striped leggings?  The innocent little look on Charlotte's face? 
All of the above!


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

A Week Full of Pictures {2}

Here we go for round 2 of cell phone pictures.  It just dawned on me that when its time for me to get a new phone I'm going to have to make sure that all of my pictures get transferred over...the thought of not being able to flip through these whenever I want makes me extremely sad. 

This is another one of my all-time favorites.  Charlotte's Grammy actually printed us a copy and it hangs on the side of our refrigerator.  Even on the hardest days its tough not to smile when I see this goofy little lady.  This is what we call "Post-ponytail, pre-bath hair." 
Speaking of hair....!  Poor little Charlotte had a miserable cold so we decided that we would go sit in a steamy bathroom.  It was at this very moment that I realized that she was CURSED with my crazy, humdity-intollerant hair.  Look at those crazy curls!!!
Ha!  These just keep getting better and better.  Here is Chuck just chillin' in the kitchen while we cleaned up after dinner.  She's totally rockin' that hat!
Charlotte had a heart cath last December in preparation for her surgery in January.  We thought it was only appropriate for her to tell the world just how tough she was.  She was definitely the toughest chick I've ever known!
Early surgery = even earlier morning.  This is Daddy and a hungry, tired Charlotte getting in some last minute snuggles before surgery.  For those heart families out there...you know how hard/scary/agonizing these mornings are.
Mommy and Charlotte before surgery.  Ugh, my heart hurts just thinking about it.
I cannot begin to tell you how hard it is to see your child immediately after open heart surgery...and I hope that you never have to know for yourself.  This is the closest that we could get to "holding". 
Snuggling with "Red Butt".  No breathing tube, no oxygen.  Just a cute girl with her monkey.
The first smile after a sleepless week in the hospital is always the best! 

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Week Full of Pictures {1}

The past week or so I’ve found myself watching Charlotte videos and looking through old pictures more often. They make me smile. They make me cry. But most of all they help me remember. I was going through pictures on my cell phone the other day over lunch and thought that it would be fun to share some of these memories with all of you. After all, cell phone pictures are those out of the blue, “crap I don’t have my camera” moments that often capture the best little moments. I’m struggling to find words lately (perhaps because life has been pretty uneventful)…so a week full of pictures might be a good mental break.

The medication that they had to give Charlotte to keep the duct in her heart open until surgery also has the side effect of making her "forget" to breathe.  I got a phone call in my hospital room one night telling me that they were going to intubate her due to some episodes of apnea...this is how i found her the next morning.  Cute little girl, cute little bow, pesky little tube.

Once we were moved to the recovery floor I got lots of snuggles in with my little lady!  This was the longest she had ever kept her eyes open.  I was taking a picture to send to Daddy in Sioux Falls and wouldn't you know, she decided to send some kisses his way!

Home sweet home!  Her socks in this picture crack me up.  She had such short little legs that even newborn socks looked like knee-high boots!


You may remember THIS post from Miss Crabby Pant's 2 month birthday.  I feel bad now calling her crabby because this was just shortly before we learned that she had a milk-soy protein intolerance.  Her little tummy had to be just miserable.  Anyway, Charlotte was either crying or puking for about 98% of the day and then finally collapsed on my lap all sprawled out like she was totally exhausted.  Speaking of exhausted...check out my face in this picture!

This one was taken about 10 minutes later.  All the stress of that day is forgotten when I look at this picture.  It might be one of my all-time favorites.  Tear...

I love my Mummy.  I don't think this one needs any other words.

Stay tuned....
More cell phone pictures to come tomorrow!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

GOOOOO PACKERS!

At only 4 months old Charlotte had already decided that football was pretty cool.  She loved to spend her Sundays cheering on the Packers with her Daddy.  Since the Packers play the Vikings this weekend I thought it would be the perfect time to share a little video with you all.  

Disclaimer:  I sound like a crazy woman in this video.  Please make sure that your volume isn't turned all the way up...I mean it!



Football Sundays just aren't the same without that little grin...

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Hearts of Hope

This past weekend I had the opportunity to attend the Midwest Heart Connection’s 8th Annual Hearts of Hope Gala in Omaha.  It was an awesome night and the perfect way to celebrate our little heart kiddos, angels, families and the hospital staff who cares for them all (and not to mention raise a little money for a good cause while we're at it!).  This was my first time attending Hearts of Hope and I was a little nervous about how my emotions would manifest that night.  Lucky for me I was surrounded my 19 incredible family members and some really great friends that I have come to know as a result of our journey.  Yes, there were tears here and there throughout the night, but I can confidently say that good conversation and laughter were much more common!


Wouldn't you know...I took an extra large purse with me to the event so that I could have my good camera with me.  Once I got there and went to snap my frist picture of the night I realized that my camera battery was 1000% dead.  Its a good thing that I had someone for back-up!
Lindsey and Angie
Jay and Jill
Lindsey and Brad
Steve and Erin
Vick and Jim
Brooke and Dane
Me and the in-laws, Hal and Mary
Deanna, Vicki (mother in-law) and Steve
Goeser girls--YAY!
Goeser girls plus Mama Debbie
Me and Natalie (nurse/friend)
Erin and Angie
Can you tell they are all related?  Aunt Vicki, Erin, Angie, Debbie
Alyson modeling a silent auction purse (and getting a weird look from the woman in the background)
380 bottles of Colby Red wine donated for the night.
Click HERE to learn more about it! 
I may or may not have snuck into this picture at the last minute.
This beauty (along with an equally awesome framed print that I don't have a picture of) came home with me at the end of the night thanks to my sisters/brother-in-law.  We hung this one in our dining room and it definitely made our rental a happier place to be!


Thanks to my family for coming and being a part of this event this weekend.  I had so much fun and can't wait until we can do it all again next year!  LOVE YOU ALL!