Friday, March 25, 2011

3 Years.....

.....Has it really been that long?  Three years since I held Kate for the last time, kissed those chubby little cheeks and said our goodbyes.  It's been 3 years too long.  I've replayed, in my mind, that day over and over again.....all those emotions I felt: sadness, anger, hopelessness, fear, comfort, gratitude, hope and ultimately LOVE.....a love that makes your heart ache.  I thought I experienced the greatest love when I brought Kate into this world and couldn't imagine feeling any greater love until we had to let her go.....unconditional love beyond belief.

Kate was so sick.  She struggled.  She hurt. She endured many physical challenges in her short little life.  But she was perfect to me.  I wanted her here even with all of these challenges.  I wanted to raise her.  I wanted to spend hour after hour doing nothing but holding and cuddling her, singing and reading and soaking up all the love she filled my life with.  I loved my life even with all the stresses of caring for a very sick child.  All I wanted was for her to be here and life was good......very hard....but good.  Was that selfish of me to want that?  Probably, but I didn't care.  The grieving process is an interesting journey.  It's a day-by-day, minute-by-minute thing.  I have learned so much over the last almost 5 years.  My perspective has changed immensely.  I think about the worries and cares I had before having Kate and it actually makes me giggle a little bit.  Oh how it would be to only have those worries again. 

I have realized on a whole different level the love that I have for my family.  They are what matter most to me.  I want to be with them forever.  This whole experience of losing a child has changed my initial perspective of what life is all about.  I want to be a better person.  I think back on this day the past 2 years and I didn't know what to expect, how I would feel or how I would spend the day.  It made me so anxious just to think about it.  I wanted to just bypass this day and not have to face those unknown emotions.  Looking back, those anniversary dates were hard.  I cried.  I felt sad.  I wanted to stay in bed all day long and not have to face the day.  The bottom line is I just plain felt sorry for myself.  But I missed Kate.  I didn't know how to turn that sadness into something good and positive.  So this year, on this day, I wanted it to be different.  I wanted to reflect on Kate's life and have this day be about her and not about poor me.  I didn't want to spend the day crying and throwing myself a pity party. I've always felt good when I've involved myself in serving others and so I decided that I wanted to focus on someone else and do something of worth for them.

Today I had the opportunity to meet a medically challenged lady who needed assistance in going to a doctor appointment.  Because of a previous brain injury, she has been unable to drive.  The clinic is about 45 minutes from where she lives and so I had some time to visit with her and get to know her a little bit.  She has not had the easiest life and has been faced with many different challenges.  I listened as she expressed her anguish over an experience she had with her daughter that ultimately estranged them. Although our situations are completely different, we both share the heartache of losing a child.

Today was a happy day filled with many wonderful memories of our precious Angel Kate. I'm grateful for the experience and the opportunity I had to meet this sweet woman.  So, the lesson I learned today is.....when you're feeling sorry for yourself, do something good for somebody else. It can greatly enrich your life.

Monday, March 21, 2011


Yes......we are so excited that we are adding baby #3 to the mix. And just when I feel like I've got this girl thing down, we get a BOY to shake things up a bit.  I can't tell you how ecstatic we are to have a little boy!  Mia is also so excited to have a baby brother, although she still refers to "him" as "her."  I don't think she realizes that in just a few short months, she is going to be dethroned!!!  Baby Rosenvall will make his debut in July and we can't wait!!! 

{P.S.....isn't he handsome?}

Thursday, March 17, 2011

L * U * C * K * Y

What better way to celebrate St. Patrick's Day than with a "Green" Cuisine!
Green eggs, green pancakes....
 ...and green milk! 
 Bon Appetit!!!!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Mia-isms Part Deux...

Mia and I were reading books before bed one night and I asked her "what color are the grapes?'"  She said, "Orange!  No, actually they're purple."

One Saturday we were out running errands.  Bryan and I were discussing the places we needed to go when Mia interrupts and says, "Babe, can we go to Wally-Mart?"

We were out on a Sunday drive and Mia was throwing a little tantrum.  Bryan gave her fair warning and told her if she didn't straighten up that he was going to pull the car over and give her a spanking.  She kept at it and so Bryan abruptly pulled off to the side of the road and Mia bellows out, "OH GRACIOUS!"

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Happy "100th" Birthday Grandma Roper

Today my Grandma Roper would've turned 100 years old.  She passed away 18 years ago and it's so hard for me to believe that she has been gone that long.  My grandpa and her left quite a legacy.  I have to admit that I have the coolest family and it's always a PARTY when we all get together.  Last May Grandpa Roper would've turned 100 years old and our family threw a big SHEBANG to celebrate.  One of that hardest things about living away from family is missing out on all of the fun get togethers.  I was bummed that we weren't able to make it to Grandpa's celebration and I told myself that I won't miss another big party.  So, Mia and I made a last minute trip to Utah and it was totally worth it.

A party isn't a party with the cake.  As you can see here, this was one BIG cake.  It was made with 8 half sheet cakes.

A masterpiece in the works.  Grandma's favorite color was peach. 

The die-cuts on here represent the many things that remind us of Grandma.....her love for her children and grandchildren, Rook (she loved playing cards with her grandchildren), candy making (specifically honey candy), diligent in writing in her journal, quilting, cooking/baking, their mission in Samoa,  her love for music and of course she always wore sneakers. Grandma and Grandpa didn't have a clothes dryer and I have many memories of going to their house and there always being clean clothes out on the clothes line.

Yes, there were 100 candles to be exact!

Dad and his siblings
{L to R...Gary, Afton, Dot, Suzanne, Marj, Alan}
Mia is totally in her element on Grandpa's farm.  She was found numerous times soliciting people to take her for  rides on the wagon.  

Buck serving up some king crab legs.

Mia and her cousin Matti were inseparable and had a ball dancing together. 
Doing the Bunny Hop {a Roper tradition}

The wallflowers