Happiness Journal

Happiness is watching your dog play with a new friend.

While on a hike this morning Linus met “Bo” (not his real name) and they chased each other, played in the water and frolicked like long lost friends. Just as quickly as “Bo” appeared, he disappeared into the woods never to be seen again. We were a little sad by his departure.

On the way home Tom said he was tired of always being sad. I agreed.  We then chatted about how, even though our hearts will always have sadness and longing for our girls, it was amazing how God also has filled us with so much joy. We both agreed that our morning hike was love drenched and that “Bo” was a big part of those feelings.

Thanks Bo for joining us on our hike today, giving Linus someone to play with and allowing us to feel joy in the midst of our sadness.

Although they were not physically present this morning, Anna and Abigail were definitely with us.



I wrote this post in July and never published it. Since I wrote it the walls have been painted and we are all moved in (this will make sense after reading the entire post).  The transition has been a good one thanks to Abigail’s nudges of approval. I’m so glad our girls keep us close just like we keep them close.


Her room is nearly empty waiting for a fresh coat of paint. In the corner sits a book case that will soon be the color yellow, just like she planned. On the shelves all of her favorite things.

Tom and I spent the weekend rearranging our living spaces. We knew that after Alice was born it would eventually happen but have been waiting for permission from Abigail to begin. Tom said this weekend was good so we started the painful process of going through Abigail’s belongings and cleaning up her space so we could move in. Her space, like Anna’s before Alice arrived, has pretty much gone untouched since she went to Heaven.

As we went through drawers and belongings, we cried, we laughed and we connected with our girl in Heaven. Abigail had hidden away a lot of lists ~ lists of the things she wanted to do, places she wanted to go, words that were important to her (some in other languages she wanted to learn) and a list of the people in her life and what she liked about them.

I read aloud, “Anna ~ generous, Emily ~ kind, Ben ~ generous, Susan ~ loving, sweet, kind, Mom ~ nice, loving.”

I paused, looked at Tom and read the last one, “Daddy ~ the person I love the most!”

Tom was and forever will be Abigail’s rock. When I met the two of them they were very much like Anna and I ~ inseparable. Tom was a single dad taking care of his 8 yr old daughter full time. He was working hard to provide for her and being the best dad ever. Their connection was one of the many reasons I fell in love with Tom.

I reflect often on how my heart feels missing my girls but in this moment all I could do is reflect on how Tom’s heart felt ~ he misses his girl.

Abigail adores her dad. She is his biggest fan and she stands by him through thick and thin. Even now, she nudges me towards her dad in tough times, whispering in my ear to take care of him.

Their relationship was, is and always will be beautiful.


There were a lot of treasures found that day. It never ceases to amaze me how they come into our lives right when we need them ~ which is pretty much every second of every day❤




Lucky Bunnies

I can tell stories about Abigail’s bunny B-Rab ~ how he used to live in the house, how he loved to hang out with the girls in their fairy garden, how a 10 yr old Abigail decided to give her bunny to Anna and how Anna used to sit in front of the house with B-Rab in the wagon advertising, “pet B-Rab for .25.”

The girls both are taking care of B-Rab in Heaven now ~ he arrived there shortly after they did.

Yesterday the light was just right in our room so I decided to take some photos of Alice and her bunny. It’s her favorite toy and she holds it very close most of the time.

She has lots of little stuffed animals ~ dogs, cats, bears, a pelican, kangaroo and even a buffalo.

Little B-Rab is her favorite and it makes me smile.

abs and b rabanna b-rabalice and bunny

The Pain

The pain is indescribable, the desperate feeling of wanting something so bad and knowing that it will never be again in this lifetime. The problem that you can’t fix.

The pain grips me tight as I come out of a daydream and my reality sets in ~ they are not here, they are in Heaven.

The pain of isolation ~ even when you are surrounded by people who love you and care, grief is still very isolating.

The pain and sadness I feel for Alice as I watch her grow ~ she will only know her sisters through photos and stories.

The pain and exhaustion that waves over me as I watch the first leaf prematurely fall to the ground in front of their tree ~ It’s almost that time of year again.

I hurt.

I miss my girls so much.

girls and dolls


There is something about him…

Yesterday I took three photos of Linus.

The first, a group shot, took some time to coordinate because at first he wanted to get really close to Alice, really close. Then, he would only look away from the camera. In this shot it looks like I have a death grip on his collar to make him stay ~ I promise that is not the case❤

the three of us

Later in the day I came into the kitchen to find Linus “spooning” his stuffed dog, one that looks very much like his younger brother or maybe a girlfriend of his same breed. As I took the picture he didn’t look up at all, didn’t even move. Those eyes.

linus spooning

Last night I came downstairs after putting Alice to bed to find this, his “friend” in a bit of a pickle with his/her face chewed off. Linus, with a sort of proud yet frustrated look on his face, looked up at the camera as to say, “yes, I did it ~ now what are you going to do about it?”

bad linus

There is something about my big yellow dog that makes me smile and be a little frustrated at the same time.

Today on my to do list ~ a little sewing.

Happiness Journal

on the bedThese moments with little Alice fill my heart with so much love. There is not one moment of this journey that I will take for granted ~ even the really hard parts. I am realizing more and more each day  what gift this little girl is to my heart.

I can’t wait till the day she starts asking about Anna and Abigail, “mama, will you tell me another story about my sisters?” Those will be such sweet words coming from this little one and I will joyfully (with tears at times) tell her story after story about her big sisters.

Her sweet face and the love I know she feels from Heaven makes my heart so happy❤