I Miss….

We sent this picture to Emily and Ben. The girls were missing them tons and wanted them to know.

We sent this picture to Emily and Ben. The girls were missing them tons and wanted them to know.

I Miss…

~ playing games with the girls at night; Uno, Jungle Speed, Wig Out, 1313 Dead End Drive and our new favorite The Game of Life.

~ snuggling with Anna in the morning.

~ telling the girls to stop fighting.

~ hearing about Abigail’s day at school.

~ playing Cafe with Anna…I would cook dinner and she would belly up to the bar with her babies and pretend she was at a Cafe.

~ Anna asking for a bednight snack.

~ Abigail asking questions about whether 6th grade was a good time to have a boyfriend.

~ laying in Anna’s bed while she brushed her teeth and danced around her room.

~ kissing Abigail goodnight and having her grab and pull me into bed with her.

~ Anna so intently watching Tom shave.

~ telling the girls I don’t have enough energy to play lava monster at 7:30 pm and having Abigail give me a hard time. (I’m not a night person)

~ giving Abigail a hard time at 7:30 am when she was grumpy and didn’t want to dance around with me. (She’s not a morning person)

~ that we understood this about one another but still gave each other a hard time anyway.

~ how my girls made me want to be the best parent I could be.

~ having kids play hide and go seek in our house. Many times trying to find Abigail because she knew all the good hiding spots.

~ having Ozilline knock at the door around 5:30 to ask for a play date and then hearing Taylor Swift blasting from upstairs 5 minutes after her arrival.

~ the girls asking to go get ice cream, over and over and over again.

~ Anna holding my hand.

~ Abigail asking if her hair looked stupid or was sticking up on the sides. It always looked fabulous.

~ dropping Abigail off at school and rolling down the window just as she was 5ft from the car and Anna and I screaming, “I love you Abigail.”

~ the look she gave us when we did that.

~ new artful creations emerging from the studio.

~ hearing Abigail and Tom talking in her bedroom.

~ monkey bars in the morning before school.

~ relentless request for sleep overs with friends.

~ the excitement that filled the house when Emily and Ben were coming for the weekend.

~ seeing Anna at recess and having her kiss and hug me a hundred times.

~ watching Anna ride Tiva.

~ having Abigail show me all her new Tap moves.

~ hanging out at the dance studio watching Anna in her tap class.

~ the smile she gave me when her eyes met and she knew I was watching.

~ listening to Anna care and nurture Baby Mary every single day!

~ hearing the loud music coming from Abigail’s room, even when the door was shut.

~ picking Anna up from her dad and listening to stories about her weekend away.

~ watching Tom dance with my girls.

~ elaborate dance productions in the family room staring my girls.

~ looking through the American Girl Doll catalog with Anna while snuggling up in the big red chair.

~ the excitement of finding Joey Francisco, our elf, each morning in December.

~ thinking about their future.

~ Anna giving me the “I Love You” sign as she drove away with her dad for their weekend together.

~ watching Anna lift Sampson’s back-end up so he could stand up.

~ sitting at the table and eating dinner as a family.

~ asking Anna to stay in her seat while eating dinner as a family.

~ talking/fighting with Abigail to do her reading.

~ being amazed that even when Abigail loved her book she would only read for exactly 30 min.

~ listening to the excitement in Anna’s voice because she was finally learning how to read.

~ listening to Abigail’s plans for her future.

~ listening to Anna’s plans for the future.

~ planning birthday parties with lots of surprises.

~ hugging Abigail and having her squeeze me really tight.

~ hearing Anna shout from the shower, “Mama where are you?”

~ hearing “Mama.”

~ planning family adventures.

~ finding our journal under my pillow and reading Abigail’s latest entry.

~ writing an entry back and telling her how proud I am of her.

~ talking about and then writing down 3 things that made Anna happy each day before she went to bed. Looking at her drawings of those 3 things the next morning.

~ watching Wonder Kratts and Curious George before school with Anna.

~ movie nights snuggled on the couch.

~ asking the girls to pick up their shoes.

~ paying out allowance.

~ listening to the girls plan for their allowance.

~ laughter.

~ watching Anna continuously move throughout the house every single night.

~ Abigail’s sweet singing voice.

~ Anna singing “We are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” by Taylor Swift at the top of her lungs.

~ finding love notes on my night stand.

~ my girls, I REALLY miss my girls.

This list can go on and on. I pray for continued peace and know that I will spend eternity with my girls. Until then, I will miss them terribly and will cherish the life I had here on earth with them. Under His wings I will find refuge. I am forever grateful His grace and for the time I had with my girls.

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.   Psalm 91:1-16

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Below is a post from Kaden’s mom last night – thank you to all that prayed and continue to pray for this family.

“Kaden is looking great. Has breathing tube out and he is already sitting up. He is back to his bossy self. Hoping he sleeps well and he is on the road to recovery. It will be long road but first hurdle is over. Praise the sweet Lord. Please keep up the prayer it has worked a miracle today. One happy momma!”

Anna and Rowan

Yesterday while I was going through wedding photos I found this picture.

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I couldn’t help but remember a conversation that Anna and I had not long ago about the hyphen in our names. She asked why some people have just one name and we have two. I explained to her that both her dad and I felt it was important that she had both of our names and, when I got married to Tom, I felt it was important to stay connected to her – so I kept my maiden name and then hyphenated it with Tom’s last name. Hence we both are Dieter-Something. Anna totally understood all of this but looked at me with this funny grin. She then said very directly, “I won’t stay hyphenated forever Mama, because when I marry Rowan I’ll be Anna Toomey.”

The night Anna was born Rowan was in the hospital awaiting her arrival, he was seven months old. Anna would declare often that she knew Rowan the longest out of all her friends. She was very proud of this fact. She loved Rowan so much and I am so happy she had this life long friendship with him. They were so funny together, laughing and sometimes fighting like an old married couple. They knew each other, really knew each other, which came out often in the way they played. Asking for a play date with Rowan was a daily occurrence, they would disappear upstairs and enter a world of make believe like no other. Critters, grocery store, vet clinic, house, babies, spies and, my all time favorite (even though it was a bit disconcerting) – teenagers.  One time on a bike ride they asked if I would ride behind them, way behind them. I asked why and they told me they were playing teenagers without any parents around. I smiled then and I’m smiling now. They were so funny.

These two had a plan for their future. They were going to get married, live on a farm and have 16 head of cattle. Rowan was going to be an architect and they would have 2 kids, a girl and boy named Joey. Anna wanted to have one child herself and adopt the other. Rowan thought maybe the farm would be in Seattle but he wasn’t sure if Anna would like it there.

Their friendship was solid and I know that no matter what came their way, other friendships and new schools, they would always make their way back to one another. I know a lot of people pray for Tom and I to have peace with the loss of our girls. I pray for Rowan, and all of my girls friends’. Their little hearts are broken without my girls around and I pray that God will give them peace knowing that they have two angels that will be forever watching out for them.

I am so thankful for this little boy who loved my daughter with all his heart. I know that she loved him too. This is so evident my the number of times I have found his name written on random pieces a paper around her room. It was one of the first names she could write all by herself.

Who knows what would have happened in the future for Anna and Rowan. I would like to think that one day I would be putting together the best slide show ever for their rehearsal dinner.

This is where it would start…

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Sitting on a Cloud

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I love thinking about Anna and Abigail sitting with their feet dangling off the edge of a cloud watching me move through this world.

I remember one time when the girls and I were talking about Heaven, Anna asked what it looked like and happens when you get there. Abigail jumped in with this beautiful fairy tale like description of angels, the ability to fly and take different forms, fluffy clouds, and streams of chocolate that ran for miles…basically everything a little girl would want it to be.  At first I wasn’t sure about Abigail’s interpretation because I didn’t want it to sound better than the girls being with me.

Selfish I know.

I chimed in with something like, yes it’s a wonderful place and someday we will all be there but we don’t want to go there right now. Anna, with a serious look on her face, wanted me to reassure her that going to Heaven was only going to happen when we were old. I remember wanting to ease any concern she had, I said that was the plan but sometimes we go when we aren’t old.

I was so afraid that one of her friends would pass or if something happened to me she wouldn’t understand. I would tell her that when the time comes and I do go to Heaven (hopefully when I’m really old) that I would be her angel, that I would be safe with Jesus and I would always watch out for her. I wanted her to hear me saying that and not someone else after the fact.

During those moments the thought of them going to Heaven first never crossed my mind.

These conversations are what I think of now. I am so glad we talked about it and that Abigail shared with me her fairy tale description.

I hold on to that place of happiness.

I close my eyes and I can see my girls soaring high above the clouds, I can hear Abigail scream to Anna that the chocolate is the best they’ve ever had, I feel them comforting me when the ache in my heart is unbearable and I can hear them laughing as they jump from cloud to cloud…doing cartwheels and perfect flips along the way.

I can hear Anna whisper, “I love you Mama, Abigail was right it is amazing here.”

Heaven is real and my girls are there.