Shaken.

Monday, I was shaken. Shaken in a way that allowed the haunting world of “what if” to shift the ground beneath me and unsettle everything I thought I knew…for a moment.

An old friend from Michigan lost her son in a sledding accident. He was eight. And when my dad called to tell me the news, I dropped my chai tea in the middle of Starbucks and ran out the door. Because I had to get home to my kids.

Photobucket

Photobucket

I pulled into the driveway to a waving, barefoot Lainey who was sitting cross-legged and carefree in the grass next to Brett. I left the car door open while I ran, breathless, to grab her, hold her, tell her I loved her so very much. And I cried and told Brett about the little boy whose Christmas card I just pulled off my wall two weeks ago. My heart painfully throbbed between hurting for my devastated friend and forcing myself to stand in her shoes–to wonder how one would ever be able to walk again after such heartache.

It consumed me for the rest of the day and well into the night. I whispered his name, prayed for his family, closed my eyes and tried to will peace into their brokenness. You hear of these things on the news. The news–where real little boys who belong to people you know are safe in their homes playing video games and being kissed by their mamas. But I know this family. And the looming truth of Sometimes Bad Things Happen to Good People made me feel stifled and afraid.

I held Lainey’s hand a little tighter on the way to the lake that night and broke Nella’s crackers into tinier pieces, fingersweeping her mouth between each bite. I thought about every what if that haunts me. And while I knew searching for answers was futile, I questioned and arrived at an opressive emptiness.

We quietly watched our heavy Florida sun sink slowly behind the silhouette of forest at the edge of the lake, and I suddenly felt a peace.

Photobucket

Photobucket

There will never be answers for so many of life’s grandest questions, and the unsettling ground of “what if” will shake us as parents many times along this journey. And while pain does not flow well with what we all have in mind for our future and what we strive every to day to achieve, it is a part of this world and the great catalyst for challenging us to love bigger and better every day.

Photobucket

Photobucket

We are vulnerable beings. We were born, and we will die. But today, while we breathe, we live deliberately.

“I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms, and if it proved to be mean, why then to get the whole genuine meanness of it, and publish its meanness to the world; or if it were sublime, to know it by experience, and be able to give a true account of it in my next excursion.~Henry David Thoreau

Photobucket

Yesterday, I felt so entirely present for my family.

Photobucket

We read books and ate popsicles, had scavenger hunts in the woods and made art in the driveway.

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket
Dollar Frames, Target, spraypainted.

It was healing and calming. I drank in every tiny feature of their sweet faces until I could close my eyes and know them by heart. I kissed more, hugged tighter, held longer.

Photobucket

Photobucket

The rawness of Monday’s reality will eventually fade, masking the uncomfortable feeling of vulnerabilty that’s gripped me, and allowing myself to sink back into the mundane rhythms of daily life–to-do lists, projects, new shoes, new recipes, play-dates, wants, frustrations. Because our brains are not Bible bookstore plaques and, while it would be nice to be programmed to “Seize the Day” and “Enjoy the Small Things” at every given second, the Unimportant has its place too–balancing the defining moments, softening the blows. We need Unimportant. And, as crazy as it sounds, we need to forget once in awhile–to get lost in silly pleasures like shoes and lipstick, movies and books, planning trips and renovating bathrooms. Together, it brilliantly combines for a good life while we have our breath and allows the moments we do remember the importance of it all–moments like yesterday–to rise effortlessly to the top.

Photobucket

Photobucket
My Girls, My Loves, My Reminders.

And so we carry on, stirring the Unimportant and the Important together into a rich batter of purpose. I will kiss the tender skin of their eyelids when they are sleeping and whisper everything I want to say they might not understand by night, and in the morning I will butter toast, pour juice and complain about the disastrous state of the kitchen. I will make grocery lists and dog-ear too many pages of things I want in the Anthropologie catalogue, but I will gladly put them down to embrace jammied bodies in my lap and read There’s a Mouse About the House one more time. Both worlds are good. Both worlds are needful.

Photobucket

Photobucket
Wooden Spoon Doll has been named “Grandma Krissy”

Photobucket

Thank you so much for sharing your favorite latitudes…your happy escapes. And now I want to take a family road trip. I really do enjoy reading them and am inspired by your words too. I’ll be working on more ways you can share your voice on this blog in the future.

A few comments you may enjoy:

Abilew-who: In Chicago, we have beautiful Millenium Park, and they have free concerts on Monday nights. You can pack up your kids, your picnic basket, and sit on the lawn while the babies dance – drinking wine with the city lights of Chicago for a backdrop. Lovely I tell you.

Michelle: We’ve been going to Ebey’s Landing on Whidbey Island for years and years. It doesn’t matter what kind of weather, we love it any way we can get it! We’ve picnicked in the car, hiked in the rain, explored the rocky beach and basked in the soft sunlight. When my husband was deployed, he drew a stick figure family walking on a beach and sent it home to the kids with the promise “This is us at Ebey’s Landing when I get home”…..It was one of the first things we did after he got back. Eight years later that drawing is still on display on the fridge.

GabbyGrace: Shhhh…our secret place…Taylor’s Falls where river and trees meets a small quaint town with an old cool bridge and ice cream parlor, 6 inches of snow today still falling and although I am counting down the days to our trip to Hawaii, our 4 year old said it best…”we live in a snow globe mommy!” Yes we do!!!!

Kelsey: My little gem is Veronica’s Cafe that overlooks the Cook Inlet and the Mt. Redoubt volcano here in Kenai, Alaska. From Veronica’s you can gaze out at the ocean, admire the historical Russian Orthodox church and chapel, watch moose ambling by and eagles soaring overhead, all while eating the best clam chowder you’ve ever had, or sharing a banana nut muffin with a thirteen month old Bun-Bun girl

Becky: My hometown is Carlsbad, New Mexico where the mountains, plains and desert all meet. Most people think Carlsbad is a podunk kind of a place. But if they’d only look closer they’d see all the small unforgetable oases hidden among the yucca and rock of the desert. We have several small rivers complete with swimming holes that only the locals know about. There is one in particular that is a deep, clear, brillantly blue hole in the middle of no where. It is a great swimming hole and then there is Sitting Bull Falls. Wow, a true oasis. You’ll just have to come visit us to see for yourself all the treasures the desert holds! :)

Photobucket

Thank you again for sharing!

And Congratulations to Commenter# 791, laura.railing: My favorite magical place here is this perfect beach. It’s absolutely beautiful, no matter what time of year, however freezing or warm. it’s my favorite photography spot too.
oh and those books?? Yeah love them!!

Laura, you won a $50 gift certificate to Amanda Collin’s Usborne Book Shop! Please send your contact information to kellehamptonblog@comcast.net.

Again, thanks to generous sponsors, a random commenter on this post will be winning a present today, a $50 gift certificate to the fun, whimsical designs of Elizabeth St.

Photobucket

Being shaken a bit is good from time to time. When things finally settle, they settle more solidly.

Photobucket

Feeling thankful, aware and in love today. And holding Tom, Yvonne, Connor and all our Michigan friends who know them in our thoughts.

Comments

Leave a Comment
  1. SO sorry to hear of your friend’s loss.
    thoughts and prayers are with you.

  2. How devastating. It really makes you take stock of what you have and makes you hug a little tighter and hold on a little longer.

    God bless your friend and her family – I hope they can find peace.

  3. “Perhaps they are not stars, but openings in the heavens where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines upon us to let us know they are happy.” -Unk.

    So very sorry to hear about your friend’s loss. I cannot imagine that kind of pain, although I’ve braved my own share of loss, like many of us.

    “…the great catalyst for challenging us to love bigger and better every day.” <– Love that, and you’re absolutely right. Sometimes our hearts need to break in order to truly break open.

  4. May your friends feel the love and support of those around them and from afar. There are few words for such devastation and my heart goes out to them. Thank you for the inspiring words … we can all use them as we face those very difficult times life throws our way sometimes.

  5. I a so sorry about your friend’s son. So sad and so unexpected. I have experienced this a couple of times with friends loosing young children. It can shake your world forever. I am hoping and praying that you keep that peace and somehow his family can survive this and find peace. (((((HUGS))))

  6. What terrible news to rock you to the core, but such a lovely way to respond. On my knees for your friends.

  7. So sorry to hear about your friend’s loss. I could not imagine. I don’t want to.
    I feel sick just thinking about it. Like you wrote how do they do it? How do you recover?

    So many beautiful, amazing pics in this post. The sunrise, Nella’s smile, Lainey’s sparkly eyes, Nella’s delicious toes.
    Thank you again for inspiring us, for remind us that being present is what counts, in the important and unimportant parts of life.

    XOXO!

  8. There are no words Kelle. Just hugs and thankfulness to be alive and able to seize the day and love our loved ones a little more than we did the day before.

  9. Very sorry to hear about their loss. I’m from Michigan and my family still lives there, so when I’m there this weekend, I’ll ask around to see if anyone else knows them. Glad you spent time with your girls as a result, so that something positive can be remembered out of something so tragic.

  10. Your photos are stunning.

  11. Praying for your friends! You did exactly what I would have done, love those babies tighter and alittle longer everyday! Your soo blessed

  12. So terribly sad to hear about your friend’s loss. Thoughts and prayers with her family.

  13. In a moment–even a second, our lives can be changed forever. It is so important to realize the fragility of life and the precious delicacy of those around us. Not to make us live in fear, but to make us fiercely love and focus on what is forever. I am hearing in my head that song I heard on your blog that speaks of “…storms may come…” I remember once being awakened in the middle of the night by friends who had a rare, night-blooming plant and they had offered me the opportunity to enjoy its momentary, fleeting beauty when it finally blossomed. I drove across town in the dark and arrived to step into their side porch and see the flower and smell it’s incredible fragrance. It didn’t matter that it would be here and gone. What mattered was its exquisite beauty and the sweet perfume shared in its too brief visit to our world. Precious Aiden touches all blessed to know him in such a way. And his family I have nestled in my heart. Pain passes, beauty remains forever.

    –Poppa

  14. Prayer for that dear family. I will do all my mundane chores today with a smile on my face knowing this morning I kissed snuggled and loved on my babies before the bus came.

  15. So sorry to hear about your friend’s loss. After reading your post, I scooped up my sleeping baby from his crib, held him for a period of time and drank in the sweet sounds of his sleep. I cannot imagine life without my son.

    My prayers are with your friend’s family.

  16. Holding closer, loving longer, feeling more. It’s what we were made to do. Thank you for reminding us of that each time you post. Prayers are lifted for your precious friends.

  17. This post is a great reminder to live every moment fully!

  18. So sorry for your loss. Parents should not bury their children, no matter the age, as I was reminded twice last week.

  19. This makes me want to grab all three of my girls. We have a snowday today. I’m going to savore the day with them, squeeze them, and shower them with kisses. We had a scare last week with one needing an x-ray after a skiing tumble. All is o.k. We are very lucky and thankful. It could have been so much worse. Wishing you and your friend’s family prayers and love.

  20. Your words always provide me with a “cleansing cry” when I read! Theres a brighter twinkle in the heavens over Michigan. Many thoughts and prayers for your Michigan friends and also your family!

  21. My prayers are with their family, I can’t imagine the heartache. It makes me want to hold my little girl a little tighter.

  22. So sorry to hear of your friends loss. We were shaken Christmas Eve by the sudden death of my father-in-law and after the dust settled I noticed I had an easier time putting down the to-do lists and just being present.

    Nella and Lainey are absolutely darling.

  23. What an intense post of sadness, followed by the thought of grabbing onto those simple moments and holding onto our babies tight. I truly love reading your blog everyday and the infinite sweetness of your beautiful baby girls. My heart goes out to all of you who knew that precious little boy. May you all find peace in such tragedy…somehow, someday.

  24. that sort of thing just takes my breath away. One moment, joy, the next pain. I cannot imagine. I do not know what I would do without my boy. My prayers are with them.

  25. So sorry to hear about your friend’s loss. I can’t even begin to imagine. When something awful happens that rocks my world, I try to hold onto that feeling of appreciating everything around me. It can be fleeting and I need to do a better job of thinking that way all the time.

  26. I am so sorry to hear of your friends loss. I will say a prayer that this family is able to heal.
    ((hugs))

  27. I cried reading your post today. I have an 8 year old son. Praying for your friend and her family during this difficult time..The what-ifs haunt me too but after a bit of that, I have to move forward and live my life..It makes you see things a bit differently and cherish both the important and unimportant..Ha, loved how you talked about that. We need both. Thanks for your blog–love it!

  28. Your friends are in my prayers. As awful as it is, tragedy does make us appreciate our loved ones even more.

  29. Oh Kelle, Thank you so very much for this post. I’m struggling here….I’m desperately looking for that peace you experienced at your sunset. I cant find it…I have nothing. No tears, no comforting words…just a big pit of nothingness right now. My heart is breaking for my friend, and trying desperately to feel something, anything. So, I thank you for your words that I am sure to read over and over again…maybe they will sink in eventually, like so many of your posts have for me. I continue to send my love and prayers to you, old friend. XOXO, Angela Frederick

  30. Praying for your friends and their son. I’m so sorry.

  31. so sorry to hear about your friend’s devastating loss. It is times like these that make us stop and remember what is really important in our lives, and with that said, I am going to go snuggle my little girl right now.

  32. Thank you, as always, for sharing your perspective on things. I also had a moment of sweeping my child into my arms on Monday, of breathing him in deep and pressing his cheek to mine as I listened to the tearful voice of a friend telling me that her BFF from college was at the hospital laboring to bring a lifeless baby into the world. Everyone tells us how different everything will be when we have children, but mostly I think people are thinking about grocery store trips and cheerios in the carpet, not about the real change that happens. The real change is how profoundly powerful loving in the way of a mother or father makes you, how we become viciously and deliciously raw from the vulnerability, and how we are able to empathize so much more wholly with those other parental lovers that are in this club with us. Those are the changes that I have experienced over the last 16 months of motherhood, and it is those changes that cause me to cry with and for strangers, to love with such ferocity that it takes my breath away, and to want to try a little harder every single day to love bigger. I’ll keep your friend in my heart and send love her way.

  33. What a beautiful post today, and so so true! I am so sorry for the loss of your friend’s little boy : ( I cannot even begin to imagine. They will be in my thoughts and prayers. Life is so precious, your blog is always a beautiful reminder of this.

  34. I have those what if days more often then I would like but being a military wife with a husband going over seas to war pretty soon it is always in my mind of “the knock on the door”. I am so sorry for you friend and their family, I will be adding them to my prayer list. I will be doing extra hugging and more side walk chalking today.

    By the way I love what you did with the frames and I think I will be doing some soon to hold my little mans art, thank you for the great idea :)

  35. This happened here – I watched it on the news and my heart broke.

    I am so sorry for your friend’s loss. It was tragic and here in Michigan, we are mourning his tragic loss. He was too young.

    Our prayers are with them, and you, for healing and strength.

  36. that is so heartbreaking, I am definitely holding my two closer this morning.

  37. Thanks for the reminder. Your girls are scrumptious.

  38. Oh that just breaks my heart. I know as a mom that is my biggest fear! You just wonder how in the world they can go on. My prayers are with them as God comforts them during this extremely hard time. Beautiful post Kelle. He uses things like this to make us appreciate all we have a little more sometimes I think.

  39. “A wife who loses a husband is called a widow. A husband who loses a wife is called a widower. A child who loses his parents is called an orphan. But . . . there is no word for a parent who loses a child, that’s how awful the loss is.” (A. Neugeboren)

    We will hold a little tighter today too.

    I’m so sorry for your friend’s loss.

  40. Very sorry to hear of your friends loss, sending thoughts and prayers.

  41. There is nothing worse for parents like to loose their child.. Unimaginable pain. I hope these parents feel our prayers and our support. God bless their angel.

  42. thoughts and prayers for your friends and family. thanks for the reminder to hold are kiddos close and enjoy the small things in life.

  43. When I heard of that tragic accident that happened here in SW MI, I immediately thought of the little boy’s family and gave my Grandson an extra hug. I am sadden again to learn he was part of your life. I will give my Grandson another extra hug, for Aiden.

    Carol from SW MI

  44. It is brutally sad to hear of an accident but when you know the person and a young child at that, it’s very devastating. A friend of mine lost her 9 year old son almost 3 years ago due to an ATV accident…and you are right – when I found out – I ran home and hugged and kissed my Maddy endlessly because you just never know…god bless Kelle and Family!

  45. You really never realize how precious and how short life can be until you or someone close to you experiences something like this.

    Always hold your your family tight and make sure they know how much they are loved so that you never have room for any regrets.

  46. My heart, thoughts, and prayers are with you and your friends. What a tragic accident. I’ll be holding my baby closer today…

    “The deeper that sorrow carves into your being the more joy you can contain. Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter’s oven?” — Kahlil Gibran

  47. I am so very sorry for your friend and will be praying for them, it is so hard for a friend to lose their child. This happened several years ago to a friend of mine, her 4 year old and I’m still aware of that hollow feeling of when I was told – it was awful. In a few weeks, send her something..anything, she will need those happy little reminders of those who love her when the storm clouds clear and the silence is remaining…it will help her get through.
    My heart goes out to you today Kelle, thank you for the ever present reminder to suck the marrow out of life…it is something you will never regret and I’m learning this valuable lesson – thank you!

  48. What a small world we live in. It’s a sad, small world today. We are praying with you for your friends’ family. They attend the church we grew up in. Such a heart breaking tradgedy!

  49. Thoughts and prayers for your friends dealing with this difficult loss. You have a beautiful perspective on the situation; I love the focus on balance. Although we have incredibly limited control, we can always love.

  50. So sad for your friends. My heart goes out to them.

    Love to the max every day.

  51. I am keeping you and your friend’s family in my prayers. Thank you for all of your blogs. They make me smile every day and appreciate life.

  52. Prayers for your friend and their family. Thanks for a beautiful post reminding us, once again, of what’s really important.

  53. I’m so sorry for your friends loss. I’m from Michigan and saw the story on the news. No parent should ever have to experience the loss of their child. I will keep them in my prayers.

  54. Even though I don’t know them hearing such a story shakes me to my core. I can not imagine having to bare such pain. May the Lord keep a hand on them and help them through this time.

  55. I am so sorry for your friends’ loss. Looking at my 8 year old daughter now who is home on a snow day-I don’t want to imagine losing her- or any of my children. But, occasionally the reminder of how delicate, how fleeting life can be- seeps in and it awakens the fiercest love, the most primal desire to protect my cubs- to cherish them- to put all of the important and unimportant into perspective. Again, I am sorry for your friends’ loss. They will be in my thoughts.

  56. So very very sorry to hear of the loss of your friends’ little boy.

  57. i’m thankful for social media being used for good! spreading words like these across nations only help the power of positive thought go through the roof. we’ll be thinking of your michigan friends and praying for peace.

  58. This post is so beautifully written. You manage to put feelings into words we can grasp and hold onto. Thank you.

    I am so sorry for your friends’ loss. Just said a prayer for them. I pray they find peace in all of this…if not now, soon.

  59. I am so sorry for your friend’s loss. It is such a tragedy to lose a child. My thoughts will be with them as they struggle through this. We’ve had several tragedies in my family, and these experiences truly do teach you to live each day to its fullest, to cherish each small moment, and to hug your kids a little longer.
    :)

  60. My thoughts are with your friends. I cannot imagine a greater loss.

  61. What a terrible loss. I’m hugging my kiddos a little tighter today. Thanks for the reminder. Sending love!

  62. My heart breaks to hear about such a tragedy. My prayers are with their family and all families who suffer such a loss.

  63. Praying for you and your friend’s family! Definitely shaken and picturing every moment I get to share with my family. Precious Moments!!

  64. Once again you’ve turned something heartbreaking and scary into a work a art. Tell me again– when is your book coming out?????
    Praying for your sweet friends and their devastating loss.

  65. Such a sad thing for your friend. I watched my sister and brother-in-law deal with the loss of their 12 year old daughter. It’s been 11 years and they still grieve.

  66. I am so sorry to hear about your friends’ loss. The death of a child is always so particularly painful and senseless. I will be lifting up the family and all who know them today in my prayers! Thank you for the reminder to love fully and never take for granted a moment we have!

  67. So sorry for your loss. Will say a prayer for the family.

  68. We realize what truly matters, what is really important, and to take time, only time to be present with our family, to cherish each moment, and to celebrate everything, big and small when those catalysts happen.

    Your words are so poignant and I need those streams of consciousness that you write.

  69. So sorry for your friends’ loss. My son is 7 1/2, so my heart is breaking right with theirs & yours. I can’t even begin to imagine.

    Thank you for all your beautiful words. They are so comforting & inspring & encouraging. You have a gift & you unselfishly share it. bless you for spreading the love & beauty.

  70. Thank you for the reminder to be thankful…which is hard to remember sometimes, and to enjoy these small things.

  71. I am so sorry for their loss. And you are right, we do have to take that extra time to just “be” with our family.

  72. I love your words and yes, such a reminder. This life is fleeting and oh, we need to hold our babies when we can.

  73. A few years ago, I took a 16 hour road trip with family friends to get to a wedding. Thank G-d we made it ok there and back, but there were many near accidents on the way.
    Fast forward a year later, the same family took another road trip to a different wedding, again with an extra driver. But this time they got into an accident. Their 9 yr old son was killed, as was the extra driver who came with them.
    And that shook me up to the bones.

    You never know whats coming. We just gotta keep going the best we can.

  74. Thank you for the word picture that unimportant and important are both required in the batter of purpose for our lives. Last Friday friends of ours lost their daughter who was severely disabled but lived 12 stunning years. It does make your breath catch and think “what if” and then in the next breath, gratitude for what is.

    P.S. Totally checking out Elizabeth St.!

  75. Prayin’s for your friends that their faith is strong and God’s healing power will comfort them. With an adult daughter who is intellectually disabled, your story is a reminder of the joy and love we shared in her youth and continue to share today. Embrace the love, it only grows stronger.

  76. a wise woman once said, “here’s the thing. Once you become a parent…once you start feeling a little funny and you buy that pregnancy test…once you see a pink plus sign…once you know it’s not just you anymore…well, you automatically carry around, for the rest of your life, an increased likelihood. To have your heart broken. And it’s a constant fear that we struggle to put to rest.
    And we can choose to be afraid or we can choose to live.
    And I choose to live.
    Because an ‘increased likelihood of having your heart broken’ also carries with it an increased likelihood to find yourself the happiest you’ve ever been in life.”

    i believe that wise woman was YOU.

  77. We will be praying for your friends as well. I am the same way. Our friends lost their 3 year old in a car accident a couple of years ago. He was the same age as Cole I cried and held him for hours. Parents worse nightmare is loosing their children. The saying about once you have a child your heart is walking around is so true. Thank you for the reminder. Holding my babies a little closer today.
    Ps. Jason told me last night when I was looking at your blog That Nella really reminded him if Jana at that age. She is so beautiful. Lainey melted me in these pictures as well.
    Hugs

  78. I’m so sorry to hear this news. We can never understand His reasons. I pray that your friends are able to find comfort it this great loss. I pray for the family and friends, like you, for strength and love to give to them at this time. God bless.

  79. Know that you could tumble any second. Then decide what to do with your time. Naomi Shihab Nye

  80. Holding my children closer today and everyday! So very sorry for their loss! May God bless them and keep them!

  81. That is perhaps my greatest fear…losing a child or even yet dying and leaving my child without a mother. Life is not fair sometimes, but as my husband likes to say, “The fair is a place you buy cotton candy”. Ughhh…so frustrating to hear him say that sometimes, but I know it’s true. Even though I struggle with it myself, we have to learn to live for the todays and love like today is the last day we have! God Bless!

  82. Praying for your friends family.

  83. I live in Rochester Hills also..and read about this little boy…My heart goes out to his family….I snuggled my babies extra tight this morning, and I will be sending out extra prayers for your friend and her family. You always seem to find the right words for everything..thank you for reminding us to hug a little longer, be a little more patient, and slow down a little more to “enjoy the small things”…they truly are the only thing that really matters.

    ((prayers**hugs))

  84. This definitely brought me to tears. An old friend in my hometown lost her 1-year-old to meningitis and the day I heard, I wanted to rush home from work to be with my baby.
    For me, it was a strange, physical need. Being a new mother, I didn’t recognize this feeling. I needed to feel him against my chest, and once I was home and had him there, ahhhh what a big sigh of relief.
    That’s my medicine these days.
    Praying for your friends.

  85. It is so true, when someone you know dies it brings up all of the thoughts of whats going to happen when your mom, dad, sister, husband, kids are gone? My Aunt has cancer and has been given a few months and I can’t help but think about my mom being gone one day and I can’t even imagine how I could go on. Our prayers are with your friends family.

  86. I am so sorry for your friend’s loss. We had a similar phone call on Thanksgiving evening. Some of our best friends lost their 2 month old, and just typing those words months later brings tears to my eyes. I have hugged and kissed my babies endlessly thinking of little baby Jack and his short and happy life.

  87. There are no words that can express the sorrow that rose over me when reading your post. After losing my brother last June, I witnessed the awesome pain and suffering of my parents. I will be praying for peace for all those who know and love your friend and her family.

    You are right to hold tight to the Unimportant, to see it for the true beauty it is, and to realize the mixture between Unimportant and Important is the richness that fills our lives.

    Run on.

  88. Kelle and Rik,
    I am so sorry for the loss of Aiden. I live in West Michigan and actually saw this story on the News Monday night. It’s amazing how much more “real” it becomes when you realize you have a personal connection to the story. Even though I have never met either of you, I feel like you are part of my family and my heart broke even more when I realized that this little boy was special to you both. Words could never make this tragedy better or less painful, but I will be sure to send many prayers your way and in the direction of Aiden’s family.

  89. I will keep your friends in my prayers and hug my kiddos a little tighter today!

  90. so very sorry to hear of this terrible loss.

    The picture of Lainey and Nella on the bed made my heart skip a beat. I am 17 weeks pg with my 2nd baby and this pg is giving me a run gor my money. After a few emotional moments due to early complications and a few scares recently we found out last week that I am having another daughter. The tender moment you captured between these beautiful sisters is something I am so excited for I cannot express in words. Thank you.

  91. Your words are so true, so true. Thanks for the post :)

  92. It’s a parent’s worse nightmare. I can’t imagine the agony of being without my children. A friend of mine lost her three year old when my son was about eight months old and I had the same reaction of holding him and sobbing…for days. It’s an awful feeling and even though it’s been almost six years, I still think of that little girl often and feel grief. It is by God’s grace that we make it safely through each day and there is never an evening that goes by that I don’t silently thank him for protecting us for another 24 hours. My heart and prayers go out to your friend…

  93. Such a tragedy. When I hear of something like this happening I always play a “what if” mind game. I am happy to hear that I am not alone in this. I will hug my girls a little tighter tonight.

  94. my heart is heavy for their loss, the words even seem inadequate because they are..

    cathy

  95. I am SOOOOO sorry for your friend’s loss… I cannot imagine the pain she is feeling for the loss of her child… I will keep you, your friend and your families in my prayers…

  96. Keeping your friend in my prayers. May God surround them.

  97. Praying for your friends…I will hold my little boy a little closer today!

  98. I am so sorry to read about your friends loss. It makes you appreciate what you’ve got. I will definitely hug my son tighter tonight..

    Gorgeous photos as always xx

  99. So sorry to hear about your friends. I have had the same feeling before, that one that can’t stopped you from holding your loved ones because you are afraid to lose them.

  100. This is one uber-tough reality/tension we live with as parents hey?? How do I hold my baby close, yet with an open hand? There are scary realities out there… but I tell myself not to choke him in my grip, to let life lead him and love him where it may, that he may realize the fullness and depth and all the beauty that this world holds…

    Totally thinking of your friends in Michigan and wishing them peace.

  101. That’s really terrible. But you’re right, sometimes it takes us being shaken a bit to dislodge and uncrumple the beautiful things in our lives that have begun to settle into our unawares. Let us all be thankful for the small things in our lives that we take for granted, and for the huge things in our lives that we still sometimes manage to forget how blessed we are to have.

    Caitlin

  102. I’m so sorry to hear of your friends loss. It really makes you love what you’ve got and appreciate every minute. Thanks for turning my outlook around today! :)

  103. I am so sorry for your friend’s loss. My three kids and I just held hands and prayed for little Aiden’s family.

    Isaac, age 6 “Dear Jesus, thank you for today and that we are having a good morning. I pray for Aiden’s mommy that she won’t be sad today and that they will see him in heaven someday.”

    Gabe, age 3 “Thank you for today. Thank you for Aiden. Help his mommy and daddy not be sad.”

    We will continue to pray for his family and friends. For now, on this day I will be present. I won’t say “hold on” or “just a minute”. I will read extra books, play a little longer, be more patient. I won’t mumble under my breath to fill another sippy cup but instead I will thank my Heavenly Father for this snow day and the chance for extra cuddles and lovin’s….because there is a mama not so far from here who’s heart is breaking and wishing she had that chance just one more time.

    Thank you for your words and the reminder.

    XOXO,
    Angie from Ohio

  104. My heart aches for your friends family such a sad loss. I’m holding my love ones a little tighter today! xo

  105. So incredibly sorry to hear of the loss of a little soul. I’ll be saying a prayer for your friend’s family and also for you.

  106. Wow, there are so many things I am taking away from this post…especially: “And so we carry on, stirring the Unimportant and the Important together into a rich batter of purpose.” I will be thinking of your friends and pray for them to find peace in such a horrible situation. As a mom, sometimes I think we live in “survival mode”–not for ourselves, but for them–how can I keep them safe, and ALIVE, especially in those first months with the “what if’s” of SIDS and such. Thank you for voicing my thoughts! <3

  107. Like you, I always thought “not my family”. Until this year. I wrote to you sharing the sadness our family is facing through my cousin. As hard as its been, as awful as I feel, as much as I want to fix it, living through others suffering often makes us better. So each night, I hug a little tighter, thank a little more, and live a little wiser. Prayers for your friend. Prayers for her family to come to her side. Prayers that she’ll feel her sons presence each and every day, and her own angel will guide her into healing. Thinking of you Kelle, and your friend. God Bless.

  108. Thank you for sharing your hurt. It helps remind all of us that life and love can be taken away at an instant.
    I will be praying for your friends.
    Lara

  109. i live in MI and I heard about that. I am so sorry that it was someone that you knew. Even still, when you don’t know the people, the loss of such a young life is so devastating. It is especially devastating when they were doing something that was supposed to be fun. It is amazing to me in moments of joy and sorrow how the internet can make the world feel smaller. Peace to you and your friends in this time of sorrow.

  110. I am very sorry to hear about your loss — your friend’s loss. No mother should lose her child. Ever. Your heartbreaking post will stay with me a long time.

    I like that you celebrate life, Kelle, and I think this lesson is important for everyone. Years ago,my grandmother lost her eight year old son. He drowned on Mother’s Day which I think was more harrowing than any other day. When she spoke of him, the sadness in her eyes always made it seem as if someone I didn’t know was talking to me. But the strength in her desire to live fully and in the moment despite the devastation of her heart was amazing. It made me realize how important living is…

  111. Praying for your Michigan friends! So sorry for that devastation!

  112. This post just shook me to the core. My heart goes out to your friends. My little one is 17 months and this morning, despite the chaos of getting both him and myself up and dressed and out the door, I took a few extra minutes to cuddle him and kiss him and tell him how very much I love him. I’ll be praying for your friends!

    Leah
    http://www.lovelifeandmommyhood.blogspot.com

  113. I am so sorry to hear of your friends’ loss. I will be holding them in my heart today. The loss of a child is the very worst kind of loss.

  114. loss of children is so gutwrenching. I may not know your friend or the sweet son she lost but i sit here crying for the ache of a mothers heart. i can’t imagine.

  115. Ugh. Death takes on a new meaning when you have kids. Premature death is even worse. And the death of kids? Well, it brings me to my knees EVERY time. Even when I don’t know them. Because I can “imagine” how the parents must feel and it literally makes me sick. I’m from MI. Monday, my husband lost a co-worker who died suddenly while leaving their work parking lot..3 cars behind him. A few years ago one of my best friends lost her 7 mo old baby in a car accident. It forever changed my life..I usually don’t include links to my own posts, but here is the post I wrote about how it affected me: http://itrocks2bmom.com/2010/09/24/love-your-littles/ I will pray for your friends today. And I understand completely how you felt yesterday. It is the most gut-wrenching, miserable feeling to think about losing one of your babies. And I pray everyday I never have to experience it.

  116. Shaken. I can’t help but have my eyes tear up and my nose start to tingle (ya my nose tingles when I am on the verge of tears. Weird.) when I think about losing my son or anyone that I love dearly. Or even thinking of friends losing their loved ones. My heart goes out to your friends in Michigan. I wanna run away from work right now and go to my son’s daycare and hold him so tight and never let go.
    I love the frames with the artwork. I have 3 canvases on my wall that my 2 yr old son painted. Just random colors and they have no meaning to anyone else but to me, they are the most beautiful paintings I have ever seen!
    Your girls are so beautiful and I really love your photography! Gorgeous Pictures.

  117. My mama heart is broken right now, hearing about your dear friend’s tragedy. I’m so sorry!

    Your girls are so precious … hug them tightly today!

  118. Taking a moment to hold my kids a little longer and a little tighter right now!! That might be the scariest thing about becoming a parent, loving so much and so hard and even the thought of something tragic or bad happening… breaks my heart.

    XOXOX
    Christa

  119. I’m so sorry to hear of your friend’s loss. What a sad, scary thing. I believe that death leaves us all shaken, because it reminds us of the fragility of life. Over the summer, my little baby brother (who now has been diagnosed with Celiac Disease) swallowed something and was hospitalized. It turns out it was a little pink star sequin no bigger than a penny, yet that teeny craft item nearly cost him his life. That shook me deeply and caused me to cling to my Jesus. When we’re shaken, we become so delicate and fragile, and the love of our Savior is all that can cause us to become whole. Moments of being shaken can be good, because they help us to see how much we are blessed with and they remind us of our desperate need to cling to our Savior. Throughout the pain, in the midst of the grit, He is good, and He heals. Even broken lives. Shaken.

  120. I haven’t commented in a while but this post truly shook me. It’s so true and honest and real. I feel for your friends and pray for peace for them. You saying you ran out of starbucks to get home to your kids…I’ve been at work many times and have heard or read a tragic story and that’s the ONLY thing I want to do too. You’re right…the Unimportant has it’s place in life too….but what’s really important is our families and friends…the things that make our lives so grand.

    I love all the pictures. Lainey is getting so big so fast…and that Nella is so stinkin cute. Everytime I see her little face I just say out loud “Aw Nella Bean!” So glad she had a great first birthday…looking forward to reading about when you go back to her birthing room.

    Have a good rest of the week Kelle!

  121. I am so sorry to hear about your friend’s loss. I will keep them in my thoughts and prayers. Your post gave me chills and made everything in my life seem so fragile….I stopped and hugged and kissed my four children. We are snowed in here in Northeast Ohio….my kids are doing “experiments” with a science kit they received for Christmas. Just as I was ready to scold them for making a mess, I read your post. I now have a dirty kitchen, happy and loved kids, and wonderful pictures to remember our messy, snowed in day TOGETHER. My kids are healthy, happy, and oh so loved. Thank you again for your moving post.

  122. Such a terrible loss. Many prayers and thoughts for the family.

    Three days before Thanksgiving, the Florida Jr. Everblades U-18 AA team, lost their 16 year old team mate to a terrible accident. I could not imagine being those 20 boys who stood as pillars of strength behind a mother who closed the casket that held her only son.

    Much love.

  123. :(

  124. I could not imagine the depth of pain one experiences when losing a child. Prayers are offered, tears are shed, the gut wrenching anguish is shared by our whole human family. Peace to Aiden’s family & to you, Kelle & your family. Prayers are with all of you.

  125. Truly a mother’s worst nightmare. So sorry to hear that story. My heart goes out to your friend and her family.

  126. Truly a mother’s worst nightmare. So sorry to hear that story. My heart goes out to your friend and her family.

  127. I live in Michigan and heard the tragic story on the news the other day. My heart sank for the family. It is just a reminder to cherish everyday, every moment for only God knows what tomorrow holds for us. I pray that the family may find peace in the mist of this difficult time.
    ‎”Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him.” Psalm 62:5 (NIV)

  128. I’ve been following you for a couple weeks and love your openness and the positive lookout on life. This post really moved me. I have and 8 year-old, (and a 6) and am often thinking about the “what ifs.” I also tend to get a little too caught up in unimportant things (which I am glad you agree they have a place once in awhile.) I am heartbroken for your friend. Thank you for this reminder about what really matters in life.

  129. I’ve been following you for a couple weeks and love your openness and the positive lookout on life. This post really moved me. I have and 8 year-old, (and a 6) and am often thinking about the “what ifs.” I also tend to get a little too caught up in unimportant things (which I am glad you agree they have a place once in awhile.) I am heartbroken for your friend. Thank you for this reminder about what really matters in life.

  130. Prayers go out to you and your friends as you all grieve the loss of this precious child.

  131. Reading this, I couldn’t help thinking of a quote by Annie Dillard from Pilgrim at Tinker’s Creek.

    “No, the point is not only does time fly and do we die, but that in these reckless conditions we live at all, and are vouchsafed, for the duration of certain inexplicable moments, to know it.”

    Hold tight to those inexplicable moments, hold tight to your littles, hold tight to the love that’s woven all through your life. I think it’s the only way to really know we’re alive.

    Your friends are in my heart and in my prayers.

  132. im so sorry to hear about your friends loss… it’s so heartbreaking to hear about parents loosing children!
    love the pictures btw… the sunset is goregous!

  133. The pain that your friend is going through right now grips my heart….I can’t imagine loosing one of my children.

    xoxo, Bug & Ruby’s Gram

  134. So terribly sorry for your friend’s loss. I had a “What If” moment after my son’s open heart surgery when he was only 3 months old. His heart & kidneys were failing, he needed to be reintubated & being a nurse, I knew that the drugs that the MD was calling for were of the emergency kind. In that moment, I thought, “What if my baby doesn’t make it?” & I completely lost in a way that I never had before. Thank God, my son is doing well today, but the memory of that “What If” moment still brings me to tears. Praying that God gives your friend comfort & peace as I hug my own little guy a little tighter today.

  135. I cannot imagine the devestation of losing a child. Brings me to tears when I look at my sweet babies and imagine the heart ache.

    Not sure if you can answer this but where did you get the gorgeous quilt on the daybed??
    sonjahnelson@hotmail.com

  136. My heart is breaking for your friend’s family. That is my worst fear as a mother. To lose your children would be life altering to say the least. Thank you for the reminder to love our families bigger and better.

    When I was diagnosed with epilepsy after my second child was born and the anti-seizure meds changed my personality and affected my ability to be the mother I wanted to be I was heartbroken. I read this quote that gave me hope:
    “…sometimes God chooses to bless us and make us people of integrity in the midst of abominable circumstances, rather than change our circumstances.” D.A. Carson
    We may never have answers to life’s big questions but God has a purpose for all things.

    Hugging my babies a little tighter today.

  137. I too have had feelings of being afraid of the “what if’s” and sometimes those can just eat you up. My faith in God helps me through those times of worries. I pray for you and I pray for your friend. We must live in the moment and cherish everyday…cause we never know what tomorrow will bring.

  138. My heart is heavy for your friends today. I will say a prayer and I will kiss, hold and tell my babies I love them a little longer.

    I LOVE the pic of the sunset at the lake. I would LOVE to see that framed.

  139. I am so sorry to hear of your friend’s loss. I can’t even imagine. I love your writing. It always makes me sit and think! I love that!!!

  140. I am so sorry and very very sad for the loss of someone so little who had so much more life to enjoy and joy to bring his family and friends. Sometimes life is so unfair and yes it shakes us to our very core.

    I like you have too often thought about all the horrible what if’s and would like nothing better than to shelter my little girl in my home and never let her go any where with out me where I know she is safe, but in my heart I know she has to grow and prosper into an amazing adult and all I can really hope is that she is a kind, loving, caring, gentle woman.

    Thank you for your blog and being so open as a mother for all the good times and bad times you are right there is a place and a need for both.

    And side note I am planning my girls 5th bday so a gift card would be fabulous.

    Your friends are in our prayers.

  141. Oh amn that is so awful. God bless your friend and her family in this awful time. It’s always hard to remember but this is when you are being carried, when there is only one set of footsteps.
    Brought tears to my eyes today and a renewed sense of the important.

    On a happier note – that photo of your girls cuddling is just to LIVE for! Love love it and I can’t wait to see my big sister laying some love on her little sister just like that.

  142. Heartbreaking. Will keep this family in my prayers. Now ready to get home to my Swayze girl!!

  143. Praying for your friend, Kelle. I can’t imagine that kind of loss. Like you, it reminds me to keep my loved ones even closer and tell them I love them more often.

  144. My heart literally stopped and I did not even know them. My little girl will be eight this year. We love our kids whatever year they happen to be- But as my children get older I am realizing each year added makes it TOUGHER to let them go- not easier. Their personality develop, they are that much more embedded into our soul- my heart absolutely shatters for that mother. I am praying for her strength and mental sharpness during this time.
    I loved this post – it was filled with balanced wisdom. If every post was always frivolous and happy- I don’t think I would be reading this- but you manage to embrace life while adding that needed serious side. This was probably one of my favourite posts. You have a way of putting things that seeps into souls ( Especially when combined with a few well done photographs.)
    If tomorrow never comes…tell that someone that you love just what your thinking of…

  145. My chest tightened a bit as I read your post. Sending prayers to the family whose precious boy is going to do great things in heaven. Leaving the dishes in the sink today, laundry can sprawl the floor…I’m snuggling my baby and giving my hubby the biggest welcome home kiss tonight. I’m so sorry for your loss.

  146. Your words just brought tears to my eyes. My heart aches for your friends family who lost their son. Because of you, today I will kiss more, hug tigher and hold longer my children. I recently found your blog and I am inspired by your words. Thank you.

  147. Your words just brought tears to my eyes. My heart aches for your friends family who lost their son. Because of you, today I will kiss more, hug tigher and hold longer my children. I recently found your blog and I am inspired by your words. Thank you.

  148. I am sorry to hear the sad story of your friend. I think this rocks all mamas to the core. At the same time, your thoughts are beautiful and comforting.

  149. Loss is such a hard road to travel but as you said it does make you assess the important things. I will have your friends in my thoughts and prayers with many others. I love the photo of Lainey and Nella together on the bed. It reminds me of Pisces twin fish, my symbol.

  150. The balance between pain and love, shaking and mundane, enjoying and basking in every moment and sometimes forgetting…. I think that is the answer to it all. Thanks for the reminder. So sorry for the loss. Thinking of the family. xoxox

  151. My prayers are also with that family. Reminders of how life is so precious and fragile really put things into perspective to me. I need to be more grateiful for what I have.

  152. “And while pain does not flow well with what we all have in mind for our future and what we strive every to day to achieve, it is a part of this world and the great catalyst for challenging us to love bigger and better every day.”

    That sentence is absolutely LOVELY! I have an 8 week old little girl, and every days for the first week of her life I worried with the “what if’s”. They can be so gripping- but it truly is as exactly as you said, that pain and fear just drives us to be better and soak in every second of our lives, it drives us to BE PRESENT! Thanks for sharing.

    My prayers are with your friends- it is so heartbreaking.

  153. Wow. It sucks but we need reminders and it sucks even more when we have a personal connection to what ever the reminder is. I saw a picture of my friends brother that was in Afghanistan carrying a casket on Memorial Day, a day that I was wearing flip flops and eating BBQ. The picture made me sick, literally because my brother was getting ready to leave for Afghanistan. I’ve seen pictures like that on the news all the time but it didn’t effect me as much.
    http://martismoments.blogspot.com/2010/10/ultimate-sacrifice.html
    Of course the song on my playlist doesn’t exactly go with the post.

  154. So sad to hear about your friend’s loss…I don’t have children yet, so I can only imagine what that would be like.

    Have you ever heard of StoryPeople? They have great little daily stories (usually a sentence or two) that they send out via email, or they are all on their web site…and they have pictures to go along with them. Sometimes they’re sad, sometimes they’re funny, sometimes they’re deep and sometimes they’re light, but they’re almost always inspiring. You seem like the kind of person who would already know about StoryPeople, but on the off chance that you haven’t heard about it yet, check it out:

    http://www.storypeople.com/storypeople/Home.do

    I thought of it because they occasionally have stories that deal with death and losing a loved one. There may be some inspiration to be found there to try and help your friend through her grief.

  155. Shaken describes it perfectly. It is moments like that which make us truly appreciate what we have. So deeply sorry to hear about their loss.

  156. I can relate to feeling shaken … my father-in-law was diagnosed with Stage IV kidney cancer yesterday. And even this level of shaken forces us to quickly find a new “normal” where vacation planning and home improvement plans are put on hold for considering how to spend more time with Grandpa who is 4 hrs. away. Hugging my husband tighter and praying and hoping he’s doing okay in his quiet processing of his dad’s illness … and knowing he’ll talk to me when he’s ready.

  157. We are praying words of peace for your friends.

  158. I am so sorry for your friends loss:( What a heartbreaking thing to go through! You and their family will be in my thoughts and prayers..

  159. So sorry to hear about your friends loss. There are no words… Praying for all touched by this tragedy. Embrace each day to the fullest, “Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die today..” -James Dean

  160. So sorry to hear of your friend’s loss. Tragic.

  161. I really like this post. We do need the unimportant in our lives, too. I always want to take the time to enjoy the ordinary things with my new, first, & only son. This just made me think about it even more. Enjoy those beautiful girls!

  162. I’m so sorry for your friend, how awful. It makes me enjoy every second with my family, the good, bad, happy or sad. Your photos are beautiful. I always said Florida has the most beautiful sunsets. I adore the one of the girls in black and white, laying together. So sweet.

  163. Thank you for that reminder today. I, too, have faced the reality in my own life recently, and I am constantly driven back to what matters most. As I go through a day with an agenda of “Unimportant”, I’ll hug a little tighter and kiss a little longer.

    Another beautiful post.

  164. Leave the mess and hug the children a little tighter today. An 8 year old angel will surely be watching. Sad news for your friends….in our prayers. xo

  165. tears falling..
    how devastating.

  166. Thinking of & praying for your friends; what a terrible loss.

  167. Being shaken to the core, reminds you to wake up! Life is happening right this very moment with no time to waste. I’m so sorry for your friend’s loss. When the storm eventually starts to pass and the clouds part to show the sun, I hope that they can absorb each and every ray of sunshine. Sending love.

  168. Holding your friends up in prayer. Yes…I believe we will all hold our littles tighter and closer after reading this. I can’t imagine…hugs and love and prayers to all of them.

  169. How devastating! One of my worst fears…losing a child or a close, close loved one to tragedy. I would have reacted to the news the same as you. Reminding myself to cherish the important and unimportant.

    My thoughts are with you and your friends in Michigan.

  170. Hy heart and Prayers are with you, and if there is somewhere I can make a donation in his name, please post it.

  171. Oh Kelle my heart goes out to you, Tom, Yvonne, Connor♥♥

    I have a dear friend pregnant with twins who learned yesterday one is dying, she’ll need to make a VERY big decision today….hurts inside and makes me hold my “little’s” very close today.

    Adoring you and yours…

  172. So sad…thinking of your friends

  173. My heart entirely aches every time I read a parent out lives their child. It just isn’t the way it is suppose to be.

    Something as innocent as going down a hill on a sled, life just sweeps in. My prayers are with this family and my arms are wrapped around my girl tight today.

  174. My thoughts are with your friends and their family.

  175. I feel like you wrote this post for me. I got news last night that shook me hard. I stayed up thinking about “what if’s” for hours. Thank you for reminding me it is good to sometimes be shaken up in order to settle more solidly. I needed to hear that this morning. I will be praying for your friends.

  176. Your words are priceless. My heart is with your friend today.

  177. Sorry to hear of your friend’s loss, so very sad. My thoughts and prayers are with her and her family. Such a beautiful post.

  178. So sorry about you friend. Your post made me run and hung my kiddos very tight.

  179. sorry to read about the loss of your friends son. 8 years old…goll son young and sledding ssomething we love to do.

  180. Such a sad situation about your dear friends! The book Choosing to See by Mary Beth Chapman is an amazing story about keeping faith after the loss of a child! It’s a must read, Kelle!

  181. So heartbroken by the loss of that little boy. I have a son the same age. I hurt for that mama.

  182. I am so sorry for the heart wrenching news. My prayers will be with you and friends family. It’s a sad way to be reminded how much we love the people in our lives. You have such an amazing family to love and to be loved by.

    I know why families were created with all their imperfections. They humanize you. They are made to make you forget yourself occasionally, so that the beautiful balance of life is not destroyed.
    — Anais Nin

    -Lindsey

  183. I saw the story about this accident on the news yesterday, and was heartsick for that family. I am so sorry to hear that this was someone close to you. I’ll keep lots of positive thoughts for you & your friends family. What a terrible tragedy.

  184. Prayers for your friends. I know my daughter will receive plenty of extra hugs today. With the crazy Winter we have had here, I’ve been picturing the peace of a Florida sunset, and hope to get to one soon.

  185. We heard about this on the news yesterday in Michigan…heartbreaking…

  186. A child in a playgroup I had just started passed away suddenly due to complication with croup. I felt that same panic. The same need to never let my daughter grow. Feeling that devastation for someone I knew makes me remember to embrace everything–even the grumpy wretched days. It’s all so beautiful and precious.

  187. My heart aches for you and your friends. My family was shaken to our core over 7 years ago when my younger brother was killed in a car wreck. Since then we all seem to savior our moments more and hold on just a little bit longer.

    When we hear about others who are shaken we pause and reflect.

    Since having my daughter I always try to hold her longer after she has fallin asleep in my arms and tighter during the day. I try to treat each day as if it were are last, just because of what if’s.

    This post filled my heart and eyes with tears. My thoughts and prayers will go out for you and yours over the next few days.

  188. I am so sorry to hear about your loss. Thank you for the reminder of how fragile our lives are. Recently as a family, we have dealt with medical problems and we have learned that in life there are problems and issues. Sometimes things we think are huge problems are only issues in comparison. My prayers are with your friends.

  189. This touched me deeply. Today is such a reflective day…Joaquin’s birthday…and the tears are flowing. Thank you for the reminder that everyday and every moment whether big or small is meaningful and purposeful.

  190. That is truly heartbreaking. Your friends are in my prayers <3

  191. My deepest sympathies to our friend. Breaks my heart to hear about kids taken from this life to soon.

  192. My heart is broken for this family… What a tragedy. I’ll keep this sweet family in my prayers.

  193. Sometimes I feel like I’m just waiting for the call.. waiting for the pain that is inevitably coming. This was a reminder of how precious and short life can be. I have 3 boys and the idea that any of them would perish this way is all too real in my world. I live in the “what ifs” but have to work very hard to not let it take over my existence. My very presence WITH my boys while they ARE still with me. Thank you for this post. I’m so sorry for your friends loss. I cannot even imagine being in her shoes. I’m breathing in my kids and saying a prayer for all of our children.

  194. So sorry to hear about your friend’s loss. Comforting thoughts and hugs are being sent your way and theirs.

    Hugging my boys a little closer today.

  195. That is my biggest fear….something happening to one of my children. It is almost too painful and overwhelming to even think about it. I will send thoughts and prayers to Michigan from Pennsylvania!

  196. Life isn’t always to understand, just to live, and like you always say, to suck out the marrow.
    Give those girls a big ol’ Ft. Worth, TX hug. And know that you’re loved.

  197. Our little town has something in common with your friend in Michigan. We lost a daddy on Monday morning. A 38 years young man with two children (5K and 3rd grade) lost his life when hit by a car while he was jogging… God bless and keep all those who have lost a loved one this week. May we all meet again one day.

  198. Hi there! I found this blog on Parents.com and when I saw it, I think I had stumbled upon it from a friends list. I just wanted to comment on how beautiful your girls are. So animated and so happy!

  199. I live in Michigan and hadn’t heard about this tragic accident. My heart breaks for your friend and their family and I will send healing energy and prayers her way. After having a child survive cancer, I know that I have changed the way I live a little bit. I saw too many friends lose their precious babies during Chloes treatment, and it broke my heart. We don’t live with so many rules now…we try to live each day to its fullest knowing that for some tomorrow doesn’t come. We don’t waste a lot of time on what we “should” be doing, and more on dreaming big and enjoying life. Thinking of you guys

  200. How very sad. My greatest fear in this life is something happening to my little love. He is my world and I can’t imagine him not being in it. I pray your friends can find peace and comfort in the coming years. Another reminder for everyone to slow down and take the time to cherish those you love. Life moves too fast… prayers and hugs!

  201. I will pray for peace for Connor’s family and for yours! It’s these things in life that remind us to be present in everyday. And that sometimes, life is unfair.

    Bridget

  202. I live in MI and my kids just went sledding this past weekend. I worry about bad things happening to my kids all the time as I am sure all parents do. I am so sorry to hear about your friends loss. 8 years old. My goodness. Awful. Heart breaking.

    Kelle, the picture of the girls molded all together, I got goose bumps seeing it!

    Enjoy your girls!

  203. I am so sorry for your friend’s loss and for yours. It does make the “what ifs” come closer to the surface. After reading todays post I just had to give my two very adventrous boys hugs and kisses.
    My thoughs are with you and your friend.i

  204. God Bless your friends who have suffered the unimaginable loss of a child!

    But, thank you once again for sharing with us, your blogger fam 😉 , it really does “shock” one into reality and pushes us to step back from the everyday mundane stuff, and hold our loves a little closer. Thank you Kelle!

    Leona~

  205. My thoughs and prayers are with you and your friend. It really makes the “what if” some closer to the surface. After reading todays blog I went and gave my two very adventurous boys hugs and kisses.

    Please send your friend hugs and kisses from my boys.

  206. My heart and prayers go out to your friends and their family! It is unimaginable losing a child, a thought, that like you, shakes me to my core and takes my breath away until I remember that my girl is ok and in the other room playing happily! I can’t even begin to put myself in your friends shoes of never getting my breath back…it is so sad! A friend of mine lost her baby at 18 months, and it was said that we should be grateful that God shared her with us for those 18 months before he brought her home to him. At first that statement seemed cold and almost a tease that God would do that to us for such a short time. But as time has gone on, the shock and saddness of losing her hasn’t lessened, but that statement has taken new meaning and actually given some peace to a tragic situation. I hope that through time, your friends can find a little bit of the same peace…God will bless your friends with that while he keeps their little boy in his arms until they meet again.

  207. Oh, so sorry! This hurts my heart to the core…my Gabe is 9 and my Eli is 7. Will be holding them even tighter today.

    Prayers for your friend and blessings to you today,
    Kelly

  208. Praying for your friends. It destroys my heart to hear of such sadness. But its a good reminder for us to cling to our loved ones.
    The pictures of your angels are beautiful too.
    <3

  209. My prayers are with your friends. Ever since I have become a mother it has been my deepest fear, even though I KNOW that if one member of my family dies I WILL see them again. It just makes me so sad for those who have to go thru life without their lovely little one. Thank-you for the reminder that I just need to seize the day for what the day is and take the time to snuggle with my kids. Off to do that!

  210. I’m so sorry to hear of your friend’s loss. It is never fair to lose a child. One book that may be helpful to them, or to anyone in general, “When Bad Things Happen to Good People” by Harold S. Kushner. I’m continually re-reading it. May you all find peace despite this tragedy.

  211. I’m so sorry to hear of your friend’s loss. Certainly makes you take stock of all you have, all that is real, all that is solid.

    Thanks for another lovely post that sheds light where there is darkness.

  212. Prayers for that sweet family. I am reminded of a country song ” The sharp knife of a short life” and that is exactly what it is. The sharp stab right to the heart that leaves you empty…So sorry!

  213. Oh Kelle – I burst into tears the minute I finished reading your first paragraph. How devastating…but there is no better time than right this minute to hold our loved ones close and soak in every single second with them. Sending you a hug,
    Springroll

  214. This broke my heart. My brother was taken from us without warning. It’s so tragic and unexplainable.
    I have 4 kids and they drive me crazy. During those crazy and frustrating moments I try to remember that they are kids and they are only kids for so long. I remind myself that life is precious. So very precious.
    This is another heart breaking reminder.

  215. So sorry to hear of your friends loss, I saw it in the paper on Monday what a horrible tragedy. My world, like yours, was shaken last week when a high school friend lost his 4 year old son after a 3 year battle with shaken baby syndrome at the hands of a day care provider. It really is a what if, step back and appreciate all that you have, hug you little ones a little tighter kind of event.

  216. Wow, what a small world. I am so sorry for your friends loss of her son. I am assuming that is the accident that happened very close to where I live in Portage, MI. I have a 9 year old daughter and after it was on the news, we had a long talk about safety and I hugged all my girls tighter too. A split second decision can change the lives of many. Peace and hugs to you.

  217. My heart goes out to all involved in this terrible accident.
    I wanted to thank you for the beauty in your words. “Mixing the unimportant with the important…” – so true and just want I needed to hear.
    It is so wonderful to love and be loved, even if it is only fleeting. Sending some of mine out to the Michigan family, and as always the girls.

  218. Such a terrible tragedy. I’m keeping your friend and her family in my thoughts. I hope you know how much hope your little blog brings to me and I’m sure everyone else who reads…you’re such a wonderful person. I believe we have to live one day at a time and just try to be grateful for what we have. I’m reminded of that every time I read your blog!

    All the best!

  219. What a horrible loss. Hold those girls tight Kelle. Thinking of you all.

  220. My heart aches for your friends’ loss. It makes all of us kiss our little ones tighter and remember how short life really is. Cherish every moment we have!

  221. My prayers go out to your family and friends during this difficult time. I can only imagine such a loss.
    Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6

    And as usually your photos are beautiful. Each and every detail is so precious.

  222. Hearing those stories are beyond sad and it brings all too close to home when it’s someone you know. I will hug my kids a little tighter and longer tonight. Thanks for sharing.

  223. What a terrible loss. I will hold my Lily tight tonight. While I was pregnant last year a close friend lost her baby at 26 weeks pregnant. She had to deliver her lost little 2 lb girl. It was horrible. You can bet I never once complained about being uncomfortable at 9 months. She now has her 1 month old little blessing and I know she cherishes that girl even more after suffering such a loss.

  224. on my knees praying for that sweet family.
    it just is wrong on every level to have to bury your child.
    all they can do is cling to our father ,his ways our not ours.
    i pray for a peace for this family that surpasses all understanding.
    and im holding my sweet granbabies a little closer and a little tighter.

  225. Something very similar happened to some close friends of mine recently when they lost their 2 year old daughter. I know the feeling of deep sadness for them that troubles you for the rest of the day and into the night. But God is holding them and giving them hope. She is actually pregnant again!

  226. 2009 was a horribly tragic year for our family, and while I would never CHOOSE to relive that kind of pain, I do recognize that as bad as it was, that pain gave me a whole new perspective to my life.

    Some days that perspective is crystal clear and I live…I enjoy…but some days the perspective gets a bit muddled and then I think of the losses from 2009 and the perspective sneaks back in and I live once again.

    Thoughts to your friends…nothing can be said, only knowing there are people out there to support them during this time will help.

  227. will hug my baby boys tight tonight… sometimes we don’t count our blessings as often as we should. so sad to hear of their loss, but thankful for your reminder to hold them tight now.

  228. Maybe we should ask ourselves “what if” more often. After all we not guranteed everything, sometimes all we have is today.

  229. Such terrible news! I hate that God’s plan for us isn’t always evident. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and with yours.

    Happy Aside: That picture of Nella in the gift box is too cute!

  230. I am …….breathless…..

  231. How devastating. Many thoughts and prayers to your friend and her familiy.

  232. How very beyond sad. I can not imagine losing a child. Even though I don’t know your friend I will be praying for her and the rest of the family.

  233. Tears and hope for your Michigan loved ones. So very sad. These horrific incidents do make one more in tune with their love. While you seized every opportunity to hold closer yesterday – you seem to be doing that most times! Your gratitude and love are evident in your lovely photos and honest words! I adore your art (both photo & writing).
    Shari Nicsevic

  234. “And while pain does not flow well with what we all have in mind for our future and what we strive every to day to achieve, it is a part of this world and the great catalyst for challenging us to love bigger and better every day.”

    How true those words are. People who love well are all too aware that hurt sometimes happens. We can’t only take the love and happiness parts. But when we are hurt, our ability to keep going makes our hearts all the stronger. Life is all around us, scary and real and beautiful and amazing. How we choose to participate in it defines how we love.

    So sorry for your friends. Hang on to your family and know that you have loved well and shared that love soooo well! Sometimes that’s all we have.

  235. Maybe we all should as “what if” more often. Maybe we would make different choices. After all we are not guaranteed everything, sometimes all we have is today.

    Off to go make bread with the boys!

  236. On the anniversary of the loss of my own little one, I still have no words. Hugs and prayers.

  237. What a beautiful post – sad and uplifting all at once. I liked the point you made about our brains not being hardwired to hold onto the “seize the day” mentality. I agree that the unimportant in life let the momentous and important experiences stand out.

    I am a new reader, so I also wanted to say that I am really enjoying your blog!

  238. prayers for you and your friend… no parent should ever need to deal with such shock and grief.

  239. I love, love, love the pictures of people that Lainey is drawing right now. This is my favorite milestone. I have saved and cherish such drawings from each of my 6 kids (#7 isn’t there yet!). Embrace!! And, so very sorry to hear of your friend’s loss. My heart hurts to hear news like this. Blessings!!

  240. It’s so ironic that you posted this today because just this morning I had one of those experiences myself. Kate…..a little 6 year old girl who I’ve never met, but have followed her blog since the day her mom and dad found out she had brain cancer. She has been in remission for awhile now, but yesterday’s MRI showed new spots on her brain. Devastating news for this type of cancer. I tried to imagine what I would feel like if I had to write the words that her mom wrote in this new journal entry. It was WAY to painful to even imagine, and she is living this nightmare. I cried, I felt sick, I wanted to run to my kids and take them out of school and hug and kiss them and never let them go (but I guess I have to wait until they get home). It made me realize how much I take for granted, HEALTHY kids, especially my Noah because children with Ds sometimmes have so many more issues, and we are SO lucky that he has such good health. I’ll have Kate on my mind and in my heart. It’s amazing how someone you’ve never met can affect you so deeply. :(

    http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/mcraekate

  241. This comment has been removed by the author.

  242. The loss of a child is always so unbelievably tragic. This sad story reminds me of when a close friend passed away when we were kids. She was 8 years old as well and went on vacation to visit her aunt and uncle in Texas. She was supposed to be gone for only two weeks, but sadly because of a horseback riding accident, is gone forever. Her family went into a tailspin and they were nowhere near the same after that. How could they be? I’d like to think that Emily welcomed your friend’s sweet boy into Heaven last this week. If anyone could comfort this child, it would be her. Now if someone could only comfort that little guy’s family. They will come through this experience, but of course, never get over it. They will certainly be in my thoughts and prayers. I know how terrible of a loss it is for you too Kelle and I am so sorry. There are no words that can be shared to make this better. I hope nobody ever stops really living life because of tragedies like this though, because that is no way to honor those we’ve lost. Thankfully, your outlook will help you through your grief and I pray that this child’s family has people around them to make sure that their grief doesn’t swallow them forever.

  243. Thinking about your friends loss, and really praying for peace in their future! I am wanting to hug my little girl a little longer and harder today, and rub my belly a few extra times! Then kiss my hubby when he walks through the door tonight! Thanks Kelle, your words are always so wonderful!

  244. A tragedy that is beyond words.

    I find myself often battling the fear and thoughts of “what if” “how would I handle it” “what would I do.” It’s a fear in my head that is not always healthy…that I know many moms deal with. It’s the battle of ‘each moment truly is precious because what if’ and yet not over thinking the ‘what if’s.’ I’m saying a prayer for your mind and for your sweet friends.

  245. My best friends little brother was killed tragically in a motorcycle accident in August. He was a little older, 22, but it was devastating. Like you said, you hear of it happening to other people, but not to people who are this close to you; not to your best friends little brother who was the kindest, happiest guy you knew. A few weeks after his accident I was scheduled to start a masters program in counselling psychology, studying from home, with my one year old crawling under my legs, and late evenings writing papers while my hubbie and babe were snuggled in bed. I quit before I even started, cuz for the next two years of my families life, I wanted to cherish the little things. I wanted to be present for my little boy, and any that might come along later. I didn’t want to miss out on these two years of his liittle life, or search for time to spend with my husband. It wasn’t worth it to me, so, now I’m a stay at home mom, pregnant with my second baby, and loving every minute of the decision I have made. Maybe one day I’ll go back to school, but for now, I’m colouring and painting, and playing with dump trucks, and making snowmen!!!

    I’m so sorry for your loss. Believe it or not, good things do come from it!

  246. Wow! So sorry to hear of your friend’s loss

  247. Wow! So sorry to hear of your friend’s loss

  248. I nearly started crying while I read this (in part due to pregnancy hormones, but in part because of the nature of your post). Being shaken, I think, is one of those necessary awful things that happen in life to make us appreciate our lives even more than we already do. Thank you for reminding me not to take too much for granted. Be sure I will be hugging my boy extra tight tonight and poking my wiggly baby in my belly just because I know she’s safe in there. By the way, your girls are beautiful. Nella is looking more and more like her sister all the time.

  249. Thoughts and prayers go out to your Michigan friends at their time of loss and sorrow. Having had not one but two of those moments of feeling shaken this past summer, I know exactly how you feel.

    After that gut-wrenching news that shatters you, your next response is to cling to the people you love, soak them up, and be thankful for every moment you have together.

    Thank you for putting it into words far more eloquently than I ever could!

  250. Praying for your friend, and her family <3

  251. So sorry to hear about such a tragedy. Hearing such news hurts my heart even more now that I am a parent. I can’t even begin to fathom the pain. I’ll be thinking of that family today.

  252. I’m so sorry to hear of your friends lost…but I also had a Shaken moment this past Monday as well. I awoke to an email that a friends baby girl had been admitted to the hospital because a cancerous tumor was found on her liver. The thing is is that sweet baby Violet is only a month older than my Kenley and my heart was ripped open. Ripped open for this precious family, for that sweet baby, but also for a second I thought, “That could have easily been my girl…what would I have done?” Life holds many twists and turns. You never know what the next day will hold but when your world is rocked, it reminds you what the important things are in life and you have to try to not sweat the small stuff.

  253. Happy Birthday, Joaquin! God’s first birth day gift to you was the precious family that loves you so! May your day hold more joys than your sweet heart can contain!

  254. I’m so sorry for your friends’ loss. His family will be in my prayers. And I will hold my babies even tighter today.

  255. I had a similar experience to yours last week. I’m a university student and I work as a researcher at the infant development center, we run studies on babies aged 8-10 months, measuring cognitive and language abilities. I love working there because being with the babies totally de-stresses me from the rigors of the week.

    We ask mothers to fill out some forms when they come in. I greeted these two parents, and could tell as soon as I met them that they were amazing parents. So attentive to their little boy, and very kind to me. I see 4-5 sets of parents, every shift and these two really stood out to me, they were a bit older and just had joy emanating from them. I recall thinking “What a lucky little boy.”

    When I collected the forms and took them into our computer room to process them, I gasped when I saw the section for siblings. There was one listed, Naomi, birthday listed as December 12th 2010 and then in the margin of the sheet, the mother had written: (Deceased December 29th 2010). I had a lump in my throat and went to the bathroom and shed a tear for them as I couldn’t begin to fathom the pain. And understood why she wrote her daughter’s name on that sheet: She wouldn’t forget.

  256. So sad, life is so unpredictable. Thank you for telling the story, when I go home I will definately smile as my nearly two year old throws a fit because he wants to stand on the counter as I cook. I will hug his screaming body and remember, that I am sooooo lucky to have him.

  257. Your thoughts and honesty are always inspiring. Thank you for the reminder to live intentionally all the time. Your friends are in my prayers!

  258. Sad news about that little boy :(
    It’s crazy how things can happen like that, and it changes everything. Sometimes though, in a way, those moments help us appreciate what we have right now, and that can be a good thing. Although I wish we didn’t need a tragedy to be reminded of that.
    Oh, and I love the frames around your daughters’ artwork! Never thought of that before!

  259. Death’s great sting hurts. May you all have a peace come soon…..

  260. Oh my gosh. I just learned this week that one of my friends lost her two year old. Just, didn’t wake up. I am so shaken and hurt by it. I am having the hardest time trying to sort out why such a great innocent child would be taken. I try to tell myself it was his time, but how is that so? Two years old. I am sorry you are going through the same thing.

  261. Oh my gosh. I just learned this week that one of my friends lost her two year old. Just, didn’t wake up. I am so shaken and hurt by it. I am having the hardest time trying to sort out why such a great innocent child would be taken. I try to tell myself it was his time, but how is that so? Two years old. I am sorry you are going through the same thing.

  262. We too were shaken this weekend by the deaths of three young people this past weekend. I too have been haunted by the thought that it could be one of my children. I pray for all of them and thier families as I hug and kiss my own.

  263. Oh that is so heartbreaking. I wish that I hadn’t read that at work, where I am unable to scoop my wee one up into my arms and cover her in kisses and hugs and “I love yous”. I wish your friend peace.

  264. I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of this little boy. My thoughts and prayers are with him and his family.

  265. You never know what will happen. My world was shaken just so literally into pieces. And it happened twice, which you think after once you must be exempt. But, the only thing we can do is live like every day is your last. Since it could be, or someone you love. Tell people you love them every chance you get, because you never know when it will be your last.

    Life is precious, embrace it.

  266. I’m so sorry for your friend. Any loss is terrible, but a loss of a child is just unbearable. I am a high school teacher and we lost one of our brightest seniors. I’ve never experienced anything like it. For a week straight, I held my son like never before. I hope your friend and her family can find strength to keep on moving. I’ll keep them in my prayers.

  267. In December a man I know who had only been married 7 months lost his new wife because she fell asleep at the wheel of her car. Such a simple accident, something that could easily happen to anyone, such a devastation. I was so heartbroken for him and although I never met his wife her death overwhelmed me. I felt such pain for him and his family. Through the powers of facebook I was inspired daily by his strength. I clung so close to my husband and for days and days was so overly protective and reminded him every time he left the house to be careful and to come home to me.

    Hugs to you and all of the families feeling pain today.

  268. Fabulous new header!

    Yes, those moments that remind us how fragile and special this “thing called life” is are capable of shaking us to our very core. My prayers are with your friend and her family through this terrible tragedy.

    That picture of the sky by the lake is peace-inducing for sure. Thank you for sharing.

  269. How devastating…

    A friend of a friend just lost her little week old preemie. She was born at 24 weeks and held on for a week. Everyone was so optimistic.

    When I heard the news last Friday night, I sat on my bed and cried. Cried for this mom I didn’t know but felt her hurt so deeply. My in-laws were over for dinner so I just wordlessly took my baby girl from them and held her for a just a minute, so grateful for her health and life.

    There are things that happen that shake you so hard and make you so sad and so angry yet make you appreciate what you have so so SO much more.

  270. So truly heartbreaking. My thoughts and prayers are with your friend, her family and their sweet beautiful angel. The thought of anything happening to my little scares the crap out of me. I could never imagine…. God bless them…

  271. Yes, it is indeed good to fall. However, we often don’t realize the beauty of the fall until we are able to glance back. My dad died in a boating accident when I was 10 years old and there are many wonderful things that have become of my life because of him, especially my little 1 1/2 year old lady =)

    We send prayers out to your friends!

  272. this was a beautiful post, kelle. that is a kind of pain i can’t imagine… thinking of and praying for your friend.

  273. Today, I will love a little stronger, laugh a little louder, hug a little tighter, enjoy the little things a little longer… All for a sweet little boy and his family whose hearts are breaking too much, too soon.

    <3

  274. “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” **These are the things God has prepared for those who love him in Heaven. 2 Corinthians 2:9
    – HI :)I am Meredith and I am a first time commenter on your blog! First off… many hugs, kisses, thoughts, and prayers go out to one sweet mama and her family many miles away. I am a mother of my own to a 2 1/2 year old miracle that unexpectedly came into our lives such a short time ago. Being 17 when my husband and I conceived her was not something I was thrilled about, but reading posts like these and staring into her little baby blues makes me feel even more blessed than one can imagine. I love following your blog and reading so many inspirational stories, feelings, and just day to day life with your family! Have a wonderful rest of the week, and happy Wednesday :)

  275. That is such a terrible thing to hear about– no doubt. I lost my father-in-law on the 21st of January to lung cancer, only 9 months after marrying my husband. And though still grieving, our family is comforted by the truth of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I know there is life after death, and I know we will all be resurrected and reunited with our bodies again. All of us. Yup. Every one of us. And as if THAT wasn’t cool enough, families can be together forever! How awesome is that!?! The relationships that you so obviously love to pieces (and that I love reading about so much!) can last forever. But, at the risk of sounding way too preachy, I’ll stop :) But if you’d like to learn a wee bit more, click on over to ‘www.mormon.org’ and it will all be pretty much laid out for you! Again, I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your friend’s little boy, but I’m also glad to hear that it helped us all to treasure our lives here on earth a lot more!

  276. I will say a prayer that the family will some day find peace. A parent should never have to lose their child. And you are so right, we may never know the why’s of these situations, but I find that I have to trust in the Lord and remember he only gives me what I can handle.

  277. It’s all so delicate isn’t it? And when my kiddos grew older the scary stuff is when two or more of them are in the same car, boat, whatever…cause I know I’d never survive if something bad happened.

  278. We may always be worried about money or jobs or bills or whatever in life that gives you stress but we can never prepare for such a tragic loss.

    Always seize every moment you can with those you love.

    In my thoughts and prayers…

  279. I too just found out about a death of someone close. It rocks your core and is heart wrenching. Having one child and another one on the way in 2 weeks…all you want to do is cuddle them and hold them tight.
    What a great tribute you gave your friends!

  280. I’m so sorry to hear of this tragedy and my heart goes out to that family. Every time I hear of someone losing their little one, it touches my heart.

    We are here on this earth to learn and grow and experience life’s greatest happiness and learn from our hardest trials. It is true, bad things do happen to good people. Life is a test and trials give us the opportunity to grow and learn and to prove our faithfulness. If only good happened to the good, our ability to grow and learn would be hindered. As I write this, I realize this is something I need to hear. Thank you for this post, which allowed me to ponder trials.

    I can’t imagine losing my little girl. But I feel truly blessed with the testimony I have been given of what happens after this life. While my testimony is firm, I know that the temporary separation from your loved one is SO incredibly hard to bare. I hope that family is able to find peace in this life.

  281. Sorry to hear of the loss of your friend’s son. Moments like that really do stop you in your tracks and bring what’s really important into perspective.

  282. Im so sorry for their loss, I know this pain all to well and it sucks! Praying for their whole family.

  283. So sorry for their loss. I can’t even begin to imagine the grief they feel. Hug our babies extra tight…but life does happen – good and bad.

  284. I am so sorry for your friends loss. I can’t imagine losing my daughter. I want your life, but with my child and husband :)I love how crafty you are and how you are always doing things with your girls.

  285. My heart truly goes out to your friend and her family. Words just don’t do justice in moments like this.

    At the end of last year I read of another blogger who had lost her 2 yr when, what she thought was a strudy dresser, fell on him when he tried climbing it. That really shook me. He was the same age as my youngest.

    Like you said, sometimes we need to be shook in order to really appreciate life and our love ones. I’ll be praying your friend and her family.

  286. I am so sorry for your friends loss. I can’t even imagine their heartbreak.

  287. I’m so sorry for your friend’s loss, I will pray for their family.

  288. I understand the “what if” feeling all too well. Several years ago, my son was in an accident with a television that fell on him. 2 weeks in ICU and 4 years later you’d never know it. However, at the time, I couldn’t function. It was the scariest event of my life. And a week after I took him home, another little boy died from the same accident. It still haunts me, to this day. This is just another reminder to hold them closer than ever.

  289. My heart absolutely goes out to your friends. I can’t imagine it – how does one take the next breath and then the next after the death of a child?

  290. Thinking of you and your friends! I cannot imagine what they must truly be feeling, but it makes my heart ache just trying.

  291. How heartbreaking. It is always those tradgeies that get us thinking and remembering what is truly important. I just read another blog – The Ben Towne foundation – which is always make me sad remembering little Ben who died at 3 from cancer. Everytime I read it I think about how hard it would be and what I would do if I were in their shoes. I think it really hits home now that I have a three year old and can’t imagine my life without her let alone seeing her suffer though the treatments etc. I will be praying for your friend and her family and giving my little girls more hugs and kisses tonight. It is a good reminder that you just never know what tomorrow hold so enjoy what you have today.

  292. So sorry to hear about your friends’ loss. So sad for them.

  293. Wow, I’m so sorry to hear that. I think I would have done the same thing in your shoes. Running home and drinking in the love of your children just seems right.

  294. Some times it is hard to move beyond the need to hold our littles safe for as long as we can, then we finally let them explore, and we hear of a loss. Which tempts us to bring our littles right back into our arms.
    Know that your friends are in our prayers.

  295. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family. Stories like these leave me catching my breath. I have a mild panic that settles in at the realization that things like this can happen in a second; can happen to someone you know; can happen to you. I feel that physical need to grab my baby and never let go. You are completely right though, that when we settle, we settle more solidly. Thank you for sharing.

  296. I’m so sorry to hear that. I swear, 2011 is terrifying me to the core- at just one month into the year. I’ve already had 2 friends and a friend’s parent die from Jan 1-31.

    I hope there is a silver lining waiting to pop out this spring. Coping with the loss of a person you knew so well is really tough. It’s hard to accept- to even believe that it’s real.

    I keep waiting for my friend to jump out of a closet and yell “Just Kidding!”, but I think I’ve come to terms with the fact that it’s not going to happen.

    Prayers and reflecting have helped me the most. Honoring the person’s life with story telling and hearty laughs. I will certainly keep that family in my prayers :)

  297. My deepest and most heartfelt condolences to your friends and their families, and to yourself as you all deal with this loss.
    As a funeral director, I have learned that most often, death can not be explained. And there is no answer as to why God would take such a precious little one home. The only answer is that sometimes…people are too good for this world.
    Hold your kiddies extra close, and thank God that they’re here with you. I’ll be doing the same.
    Much love and admiration to you and Tom, Yvonne and Connor.

  298. I don’t know your situation – with your friend – but I feel like I understand a bit. My best friend since birth, Melanie, lost her brother (whom I grew up with as well) to a car accident. This was in August 2010. 2 weeks later, her grandfather passed away. They were very close. 1 month after that Mel’s husband was killed in a car accident. 3 1/2 months after her husband, her nana (her dad’s mom) passed away. I have been loving on her since day one. We have always been there for each other. I was pregnant in Aug. and Sept. during all of this. Her husband and my husband were great friends, and we all hung out together. All the time. I still have nightmares – because our apartment was the last place he was before he died. (aside from a store) It is very hard. I can’t imagine if I lost my husband. She is left with two girls. Almost 4 years old and one that is 7 months. I just felt like I needed to share that too – and your story breaks my heart. It is great that you took time to put yourself in her shoes and then got back to life. Because YOU getting back to life…helps HER get back to it as well. It helps her know that it WILL be okay. And she WILL get through this. Praying for you and her and her family. :)

  299. Oh, Kelle. As soon as I read this I ran into my daughters’ room where all 4 of my kids were jumping on the bed and laughing. I wish I could have frozen that moment. Then I cam back to the computer and read Poppa’s comment. What a wise man he is! You have inherited that wisdom from him. Keep on reminding us to live and love fully. Sarah

  300. Loss like that is hard and consuming. We get too comfortable in our own lives and sometimes I think we need to be shaken right to the very core of our souls. I will be praying for that family in Michigan.

  301. Many prayers sent for your sweet friend on the loss of their precious child. I’ll be giving my girl an extra-big hug tonight when I get home.

    Also, those pinwheels would be beyond perfect for her first birthday party! It’s a pink and orange pinwheel theme. Alas, it must be destiny!

  302. Oh, I am so sorry. That is so sad. I know exactly what you mean about the “what ifs” that shake the ground…I’m not a mother yet but I think about all the ways I could lose my future littles and it makes me cry. I have to remind myself to enjoy right now and not worry about what may or may not happen. Life needs to be lived. :)

  303. I am so sorry to hear that. These moments are never easy but being a bit shaken helps keep everything in perspective. This life on earth is so short and precious.

  304. I am so sorry to hear that. These moments are never easy but being a bit shaken helps keep everything in perspective. This life on earth is so short and precious.

  305. we certainly live on the edge all the time & don’t even know it. thanks for the reminder to drink it in & love better.

  306. prayers to your friend and her family, hugging my angels a little tighter too xoxoxoxoxo

  307. I know how it feels to be shaken like that. I am so sorry for your friend’s loss. I cannot even imagine. His family will be in my prayers.

    PS – your sunset pic is insane!

  308. You’re going down in my personal history for this quote: “We are vulnerable beings. We were born, and we will die. But today, while we breathe, we live deliberately.”

    Beautiful.

  309. It’s all so scary when tragedys hit so close to home. I hope that family can find the peace and comfort they need to make it through this hard time in their lives!

    I love those pinwheels from Elizabeth St. and would love to put them in my kiddos easter baskets… they would absolutely have a ball with them!

  310. WOW… praying for that family! My husband and I have felt that “shaking” feeling before- 2 years ago, and I often think about it and cry and thank God for watching over me and my family. Prayers are with that family and every other family that has faced this same tragedy.

    Now- when I go home today I’m going to hug my baby a little tighter, keep her up a little longer, play with her a little more and tell her how much I love her!

  311. “Being shaken a bit is good from time to time. When things finally settle, they settle more solidly.”

    It is so true! As painful at it is, we need to go through hardship to come out stronger. To be better wives and mothers and friends. I am totally using this quote again.

    So hard to hear about someone’s loos, especially when it is a child. But thankful to know that God knows what He is doing.

  312. I am so sorry to hear about your friends. Tonight while I am reading bedtime stories to my babies, I will hug them a little tighter.
    The world is such a beautiful, yet confusing place.

  313. I’m so sorry for your friends loss. I’m guessing it’s the story I heard about on our local news.

    I can’t imagine how they must be feeling…hope they find comfort soon.

  314. My thoughts and prayers are with your friends and their family. It’s such a tragic loss and hard to imagine the grief they’re experiencing at this moment.

  315. Thank you so much. This was a great post today. I have a little one year old girl and I am often overtaken by the fears that come along with being a mom to such a precious fragile being. Thank you for bringing the balance of enjoying life through the realities.

    p.s. Your children are so beautiful, especially together. It *almost* makes me want to have another one (maybe if I ever get to sleep through the night again, I will consider it!).

  316. Thank you for sharing – I am going through something like this with a close friend right now. It’s heartbreaking. And terrifying. I don’t know why it feels like every since I had my son – the world is just not as safe a place. I feel like I hear nightmares stories like this sweet family’s every day and it gripes my heart and makes me think “dear God…what is going on”. But what you said is so true about when things finally settle – they become more solid than before – and every time we experience loss or fear we become a stronger and truer version of ourselves. We will be praying for your friends…and like you I will hold my baby a little tighter tonight.

  317. My heart goes out to that family and all families who have lots little ones.

    On another note: when you have a completely white background in your pictures are you editing to have that or are you taking those pictures using a white backdrop?

  318. I am so terribly sorry to hear about the little boy. My thoughts and prayers will be with his family tonight.

  319. A mother’s worst nightmare became your friend’s reality. There are simply no words to tell you how sorry I am. It is impossible to understand why accidents like these occur. May you all find peace, somehow.

  320. My heart aches for your friend and all who love her.

  321. You always say it best Kelle. Sometimes (ok, often) I feel guilty that the unimportant becomes important to me. But I feel ok with it now, seeing it’s need to make the important times even better. Sending hugs to you and yours.

  322. So sorry to hear of your friend’s loss.
    Your children are beautiful and I can see little Nella’s personality shine in your images. Look out world, she is going to do great things!!

  323. My prayers are with your friend as well as with you. We never know what tomorrow brings. We never even know what later today brings. I will be holding my little ones even closer today when they walk out of their school where we send them expecting everything will be okay at the end of the day.

  324. I know exactly the feeling you have. Today Kate Mcrae’s family learned that little 5 year old Kate’s brain cancer has come back. I have been following her story for over a year and click on her blonde beautiful head on the sidebar of my blog many times each week to read what is happening with her. This mornign I feel that sense of vulnerability and anguish for her.

    I’m so sorry for your friend’s loss. My Lola is 8 and I cannot…imagine…

  325. Kelle, thank you for opening my eyes by always grasping life’s “everythings”, you inspire and amaze. Today, I will hold my little one even tighter.

  326. i don’t know if you’re aware of each other, but i’ve found a lot of similarities in how you write/think about things and how http://pacingthepanicroom.blogspot.com/ does.

    you both write and photograph beautifully.
    you both have two children, with one a little different from what you probably expected.
    you’ve both shared your grief and your road to acceptance and your sheer joy with the wider world. often enough, you’ve done it so shamelessly and utterly honestly that it has also rocked my own understanding to the core.

    i found you both through stumbleupon.com. i am 7 months pregnant with my first child, a boy they say, and i thank you for sharing what you’ve shared with me. in a few short weeks, my life will have changed, too. i’m looking forward to meeting a child i’m carrying with me in my belly.

    i wish your family all the best.

  327. There is no greater loss than the loss of a child. I am heartbroken for your friend and her family. Wishing you, and them, peace.

  328. LOVE your new header!!!

  329. So very sorry for your friend’s loss. :(

  330. I am from West Michigan and saw that story on my local news, my heart just sank. Anytime a parent looses a child my heart aches and even more so when it hits close to home with family and friends. My best friend lost her 20 year old son 2 years ago in a car accident and I still to this day I cry for her. It is something that should never happen, no parent should ever have to bury their child, it just isn’t supposed to be that way. Many prayers and thoughts to you and yours.

  331. so so sorry to hear about you friend’s son. Lifting them up!!!

  332. http://adryandwearyland.blogspot.com

    i pray that my story will be able to help someone that’s hurting. no two stories are exactly the same, and i will never be able to look at someone and say, “i know what you’re going through.” because i don’t. because it’s their story. but in all stories where grief is a common denominator….there is also a bond to be had there. i am praying for this family and will continue to do so.

  333. Oh my, the unthinkable, the unimagineable…terrifying, and so so sad. Hug your babies, and thank God for all that we have, that’s all we can do.

  334. My heart goes out to those who have lost a love too young & too soon. Your friends are in the hearts & prayers of so very many people. Because, dear Kelle, of your willingness to share. We have two adult daughters with MS & there are times when they have called my cell & I walked away from a cart full of whatever, to talk & love over the wireless wave-lines as only a mama can do. loving you & loving yours, Cyndie in Nebraska

  335. Very sorry to hear of your friend’s loss.

    What beautiful pics of your kids!!

  336. I had the same feeling when a girl I knew from HS lost her son to a strange disease that showed up and took his life 4 months later. I would be up at night wondering how that could happen to a small boy and his sweet mama. So sorry to hear about your friends loss.

  337. You said it best that being shaken settles us more solidly. I truly believe that. So sad for your friends. Love the flower belt!

  338. Thinking of you and your friends today. I appreciate your perspective of the Important and the Unimportant blending together in this life. It’s so true. We just can’t hold the Important in our minds at all times–the mundane takes over so often. But it’s also good to be reminded of the Important every now and then.

    God bless you all.

  339. Last night at work, we had three deaths and they all shook me to the core. All unexpected, all defeating and crushing and so very eye opening. I want to live, really live. So glad you can hug your littles and love on them! Happy day!

  340. As I read your post in my little corner of the world we all praying for little Mattie who is in ICU with a head injury/skull fx. She is also 8 and in my sons grade. She was hit while tubing at a local ski place. She is on a vent but MRI looks encouraging. We never know what is going to happen after we walk out the door. Hugging my kids a little extra and a little more often.

  341. I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your friends little boy. Having two boys myself the thought of her pain takes my breath away. I will be praying for her.

  342. What a very sad post. I will keep you and your friend’s family in my thoughts and prayers. Thank you for the reminder to appreciate every day and every moment. You never know what is around the corner.

  343. So sorry… you’ve put words into such sad experiences we’ve all had.

    LOVE LOVE LOVE Nella’s Blueberry diaper :) Whomever made you switch, or at least try them out, should be patted on the back! Love cloth diapers!

  344. This comment has been removed by the author.

  345. I am so sorry for your friends tragic loss. I cannot even imagine what they are going through. I am holding my boys super tight today. Prayers are coming to you and your friends entire family. God bless!

  346. What a horrible tragedy for this family. Wishing them healing thoughts and hope. Such a reminder to be present in our families.

  347. My thoughts and prayers are with your friends….let them be at peace and know that they are surrounded by love during this unbelievably difficult time in their lives.

  348. As I’m reading this I can hear joyful little screams of delight as neighborhood kids are sledding down the hill in our font yard… Tears are pouring effortlessly… I’m so sorry for your friends loss and I’m praying for Aiden, Connor and his family. It’s only after our world is shaken that we can truly see just how strong we are.
    “We could drown ourselves with ‘what ifs'”.
    “The soul would have no rainbow if the eyes had shed no tears.”

    ~Beth

  349. So sorry to hear this devastating news. Wow…your poppa said it good, that comment was incredible. It reminds me of Psalm 103 (message translation) As high as heaven is over the earth, so strong is his love to those who fear him. And as far as sunrise is from sunset, he has separated us from our sins. As parents feel for their children,
    God feels for those who fear him.
    He knows us inside and out, keeps in mind that we’re made of mud.
    Men and women don’t live very long;
    like wildflowers they spring up and blossom, But a storm snuffs them out just as quickly, leaving nothing to show they were here.
    God’s love, though, is ever and always, eternally present to all who fear him, Making everything right for them and their children
    as they follow his Covenant ways
    and remember to do whatever he said.

  350. love those Nella toes. i agree that it is a balance between living in the moment and treasuring every tiny second, and also living life as a whole. one big balancing act. my thoughts are with your friend’s family.

  351. I was shaken today.

    While the rest of the country was getting their school canceled for snow, we got ours canceled today because of a threat made over a blog about my college.

    At about 8AM this morning all of campus received a text canceling class and that we were instructed to lock our doors and stay put.

    We are still under lock down…no one has been caught and no weapon has been found.

    Pray for NMU today!

  352. I am sorry to hear of the loss of your friends little boy. I recently had a moment of feeling shakened. A close friend of mine lost her niece in a tragic accident in a shopping mall parking lot. It shook me to the core as her niece was only a few months younger than my 4 yr old. It reminded me that we need to slow down a little and take things as they come, cherish all that is ours and not sweat the small stuff. Life is too precious. And to never be taken for granted.

  353. My heart goes to all who knew and loved the passing. My you all find peace in this tragic time.

  354. I posted once today but had to say after seeing your new banner… ADORABLE! :)

  355. So deeply sorry for your friends loss. There is a nothing worse than losing a loved one. Especially one so young and innocent.

    Your girls are beautiful, as always:)

  356. No parent should have to bury their child…ever. It is my greatest fear.

    My oldest daughter was born weighing two pounds, three ounces at just 29 weeks. Every single day we spent in the NICU I fought for hope for her life. And I prayed harder then I ever thought.

    And she’s five. And beautiful.
    And I am so, so blessed.

    My sister was not as blessed. While going into labor with her third child, and first girl, she had a placental abruption and I lost my first niece instantly. She was perfect in every way, but we lost her. It’s been seven years, and we miss her every single day.

    Thanks for providing some perspective, and not just brushing over the “bad things happen to good people” sometimes…because while it’s true, it sucks.

    oh, and your children are awe-strikingly beautiful.

  357. Kelle,

    I’m sorry to hear about your friends son….unfortunately there is no rhyme or reason sometimes…and it’s when something like this happens to someone close it hits home just how precious life is.

    To bury your child is unimaginable…..one of my friends asked me last week about this and I told them if they can imagine a stranger coming into their home and stealing their child away, and you never get to see your child again, never get to hug them or watch them grow….thats what losing a child is like…..the pain is forever.

    I also know friends can make a difference to the darkness….I’m sure Kelle if you were to write them (in only the way you can), a private letter about a special memory you have of their son, they would be forever grateful. I smile now when I read the one’s I have, they are priceless to me.

    Your post is a beautiful reminder to all of us to never ever take a second for granted….and I see your gorgeous Poppa gets it too!

    Sending a hug and I’ll keep you all in my thoughts.

  358. Once you become a parent you feel everything so much more. Stories like this make me hug my son a little closer and more thankful for health. So sorry for your friend’s loss.

  359. Kelle-
    I think that in order to truly appreciate your life – sometimes it needs to be “rocked” a little bit by tragedy. Not that I welcome sadness or heartbreak, but how would we know what happiness is if we didn’t know sadness, light if no dark? Hold on to today – because we don’t know what tomorrow is, and love up who is important. I will be loving mine in Iowa.

  360. It’s one of those out of body experiences when something like this hits so close to home isn’t it?
    It’s things like these that have happened in my life that have made me so much more sympathetic towards other people when it happens to them. Thinking of your friends during this unimaginable time.
    Makes me want to hug those in my life a little longer too.

  361. Oh my. I often share your blog with my mother – I love your thoughts on mothering and loving. This news… I don’t think I can even say it out loud. Truly a parent’s worst nightmare. I am so terribly sorry for your friends. Thanks for the reminder to squeeze a little tighter and kiss those little eyelids a little more often.

  362. Sending you a big hug from Utah and keeping you and your friend in my thoughts and prayers. You have this extraordinary talent of making sense of everything and helping us understand. I love it. Beautiful pictures of your girls. My favorite has to be the one of them on your bed all twisted together and fitting perfectly together. Beautiful! And I’m lovin’ the new blog header!!!

    xoxo

  363. i love your passion! and nella is looking so much like your hubby these days!!

  364. I’m so sorry to hear about your friends. I’ve known several people in my life who have lost their babies, and it’s always so heartbreaking.
    Love the pictures, as always. :)

  365. Praying for the boy’s family. Love your blog. So touching.

  366. My greatest fear in life is losing one of my children or my husband. I can’t possibly imagine living through that pain. My heart breaks for your friend. My prayers are with her and her family.
    As my children get older, I find it hard to find that balance of trying to protect them from everything and letting them go to experience life and not be afraid. I want them to experience everything that life has to offer but I also don’t want to know a life without them.
    I, too will be holding them a little tigher tonight.

  367. I had a horrible dream last night in which my four year old daughter was lost and when she was found she had been hurt so badly in horrible ways. It was a dream that was hard to wake up from. But this morning when I woke up and painfully waited for her to wake up I grabbed her and held her tight so thankful that she was okay. I am so sorry for your friends loss. Although I do not know that pain, I can imagine, and it aches. Our prayers are with them.

  368. Oh my goodness, that is so terrible awful. Prayers being sent your way and your friends.

  369. You are right…being shaken from time to time is good. Holding my little a bit tighter now, while still typing one handed. Thank you Kelle for reminding us how important each second is! Thinking about your friends in Michigan.

  370. Such devastating news. So, so sorry to hear. Just unimaginable. Thoughts, prayers and deepest sympathies to you, your friend and all who know the family. My heart breaks for them.

    Such a timely reminder that life moves way too fast, cherishing those I love this morning as I wake up in rainy Australia.

    (P.S. OMG – how could I have never heard of Anthropologie? Thanks, girl!)

  371. I can’t even imagine what your friends must be going through without getting teary myself. Just last night I snuggled with my little one – when she woke up at 3 AM – and just thought about how lucky I am to have her and how much I love her. Babyhood is fleeting – I can’t imagine losing her. Your post was a beautiful way to let them know how you are feeling and to send them all your best wishes. It is definitely hard to know what to do in a situation like this.

  372. When something like that happens to someone you know, it can totally upend your whole world view – and not just for a few days, but forever. Sadly, what first brought me to your blog was a post that someone had made on my friend’s blog about her learning to cope with the death of her 17-month-old daughter (http://hudsonsonegoodthing.blogspot.com/). Hudson died a month after my daughter was born and it just shook me to the core. I think about her and her mom EVERY SINGLE DAY. Most of the time thinking about what she lost makes me a better parent. When I get frustrated with my kids I slow down and regain my composure more often than before. I really try to be present when I am with them and not be consumed by all the distractions (work, e-mail, chores) around me. But it also brought to the surface a real fear that was latent inside me—sometimes for the better because I can appreciate things more, but sometimes for the worse because it can be paralyzing. So, thank you Kelle for the uplifting words you share on your blog. There are some days I really really need them. (Speaking of which, I really needed the post from the other day about loving where you live. I have been struggling with the feeling that I just need to get out of the city I live in. I’m sick of the stress and the rude people and always feeling rushed and that I don’t have enough time to do everything as well as I would like, let alone have time for myself. I need to re-prioritize, but that little pep talk did me a world of good to just get through what was a rough day. Thanks. P.S. Just so you know, there are days when I imagine living where you live and that makes me feel better, so know that there are folks who think where you live seems like paradise.)

  373. I have a 7yr old son and this just hits way too close to home…i am heading upstairs to snuggle him right now! Prayers being said for your friends

  374. My heart hurts for the family that lost their little boy. What a beautiful post and perspective from you.

  375. It’s funny how the world works in mysterious ways. I literally just started following your blog when a friend introduced me to it three days ago. I started with Nella’s Birth Story and instantly became hooked. I’ve never followed a blog before, and couldn’t quite pinpoint why I was arbitrarily following yours… until today. I got news my that my friend’s father was taken off of life support at noon and would soon be gone within a matter of hours. My heart sank and I felt like I was hit with a ton of bricks. After a few phone calls, and blankly staring at my computer, I came across your blog. It was EXACTLY what I needed. It couldn’t have come at a better time, and I realized why I was lead to your blog only a few days ago. You have no idea how this affected me today. Thank you for sharing your words and solace.

  376. Just like you, every day my head is full of what if…. I have so many questions, so many worries, but at the end of the night, I have to be thankful for what I have, and keep praying for those what if to never happen! May that little boy rest in peace, and today when I look at that beautiful dark sky, a new star will be shining, telling us to enjoy and live life to its fullest. May God bless you and all of your families!!!

  377. So very sorry. There’s nothing else that hurts as much as losing a child. So painful. Praying big prayers for your friends and their family.

  378. sometimes all of us have those moments of what if’s and we will never know why they are given to us but we can only do what you did: be thankful for what we have and love those around us.

    prayers and thoughts to your friends as the sun continues to rise each morning and they remember their son.

  379. My mother passed away in November and my daily thoughts of her are a constant reminder to be “present” for my kids and make the most of life each day. Thinking of your friends and their tragic loss.

  380. Thank you for the reminder that we need to cherish our loved ones as often as possible, as we never know which days will be our last. My prayers go out to any and all parents who have ever suffered the loss of a child. May God bless.

  381. Thank you for the reminder that we need to cherish our loved ones as often as possible, as we never know which days will be our last. My prayers go out to any and all parents who have ever suffered the loss of a child. May God bless.

  382. My heart breaks for you and for your friend’s family. :-( A sledding accident…wow. I hate to solicit links and things on your page since I’m sure you get them all the time, but my mother just wrote a book called “When Crisis Strikes: What to do, what to say, how to help.” It has amazing ideas of how to help friends, family, and neighbors when a tragedy occurs. It has tips on how to plan a blood drive in honor of someone, simple ways to interact with a child who has a terminal illness, and even guidance on how take care of mail, bills, lawn needs, and pets. It’s a beautiful book – it’s on Amazon and they have a website http://www.whencrisisstrikes.com.

    On a different note, the photos this week are BEAUTIFUL. Simply stunning. You can see your love shining through the gorgeous images.

  383. Loss of life puts a feeling in your body that can’t be expressed in words…even when you don’t know the person or their family. Especially when it’s a young person who gives so much energy and love to those around them.
    I’m sorry for your pain and especially for theirs.
    Your reminder to us all to cherish those we have is special.

    I’d love to know what you do with your photos to make them so special. The lighting in them is always brilliant. Is it the camera and the settings you use, or editing of some kind? I’d love to know Kelle.

  384. I’m so sorry for your friends loss. How can we ever understand when we’ve never been there… But we can feel the “what if…” and get a reminder. But it’s so sad that we need experiences like this to be reminded…. Let’s get better to take care of the moments, EVERY DAY! But that’s what your blog is all about Kelle!! Thank you for reminding me! Take care!

  385. 4″You’re blessed when you feel you’ve lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you.” Matt 5:4 (The Message)

    Someone was telling me about this verse today as she told me about a dear friend who’s disease has come back. Though the sad times are hard, I believe we need them to truly hold dear the good times.

    Your friends will be in my prayers. Thank you for sharing.

  386. this blog makes me ecstatic. those two little goobers are the cutest ever.

  387. I, too, had a core shaking moment when we lost my 14 year old cousin in an atv accident. I know the feelings you’re feeling all too well. The trick is to become better from it… it’s not fun, being shaken, is it?

    Your words are so beautiful.

    Love,
    Lafleche

  388. I’m so sorry about your friend’s son. That is devastating. Prayers are being sent her way.

  389. That was the most beautiful picture of a sky that I have ever seen. what a perfect reminder of the fact that there is love and beauty and good things in this world where things do sometimes shake us to the core. Keep squeezing your two little ones!

  390. How sad, I am so sorry. I too had a shattering moment this week that brought me home to my boy and led me to hold him a little tighter, pray thanks and blessings over him. Some things just shouldn’t be expereinced.

  391. I’m so sorry to hear about your friends loss. Its amazing how much these shaken moments can remind us to embrace all of the little things about our lives and our loved ones. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your friends family.

  392. My heart breaks for your friend. An old friend of mine lost his son at age 6 from choking on play food over the summer – reality hit all of us really hard. I remember hearing the news and running into my kids’ rooms and dumping out their bins for anything that fit down a toilet paper tube. I’ve since relaxed, however I make sure to hug and hold my kiddos tight every chance I get. Take care.

  393. Prayers going to the families affected by the loss of their Little Man.

    Thank you for the reminder of how precious life truly is and how unimportant so many little things are!

  394. This comment has been removed by the author.

  395. when i am down and feeling like i am just not doing enough to live my best life and without fail once i open your page and the music begins…….i get lost in your words and pictures……..i know you write to document your life…….but through it you inspire me to be better…..to look at the piles of laundry and dirty dishes……and let them sit while i cherish my hours with my husband and friends that have become family…….thank you for that…………i know you have the same piles of laundry and a sink full of dishes…..but you help me remember life moves to fast……..thank you.

  396. Thoughts and prayers for your friend and all who will be missing her little boy.

  397. Life is so fragile. Thank you for reminding me to keep my priorities straight.

    i love the picture of lainey with the wooden spoon.

  398. Life is so fragile. Thank you for reminding me to keep my priorities straight.

    i love the picture of lainey with the wooden spoon.

  399. Life is so fragile. Thank you for reminding me to keep my priorities straight.

    i love the picture of lainey with the wooden spoon.

  400. i’m so sorry for your loss, kelle– I have friends in kalamazoo and heard about aden earlier this week. so, so awful. it is, indeed, times like these that words fail us and there’s not much we can do other than hold each other a little tighter and try to “enjoy the small things.”

  401. My heart aches for your friends! I will be keeping them all in my prayers! This was a beautiful post Kelle….My 8 year old son was just giving me a hard time and when I calmed him down I walked out of his room to the office and clicked on your blog! 😉

    HUGS!

    Have a Happy night Kelle!

  402. HI Kellie & family
    I am a Pediatric Intensive Care Nurse and know FIRSTHAND how the loss of a child devastates a family. Be there for them. Send a note, a basket a thought. It helps more than you know.
    I have 3 boys who know that for the last 24 years, their mama has helped really sick children..they are better for it, they have learned from it and for that YES, I hold them a little tighter on some of my worst days..LOVE them…….
    I LOVE YOUR bLOG!!!!!

  403. Praying for them. I have an 8 year old myself, and tonight, I will hold all three of my children a little bit tighter.

  404. i am so sorry to hear of your friend’s loss. i will pray for her and her family every night.
    i absolutely love this post. every word you said makes so much sense.

  405. I am so very sorry to read about your friends and their loss. I will say an extra prayer for them.

  406. Grief always seems bittersweet to me – through loss we gain a sense of perspective and thankfulness.
    Beautiful pictures, as always :)

  407. My prayers & love to you and your friend during this difficult time. I liked how you said, “being shaken is good from time to time, when things settle, they settle more solidly.” Definitely true.

  408. I am teary eyed sittig here nursing my newborn. I just can not fathom the pain your friend and even you are going through right now. The thought of not seeing one more darling eyelash sprout out or one more smile shine would be devastating and a pain I would not wish upon anyone.

    I find that the mundane is what I yearn for in time of sadness. While the big things are big and wonderful and really stick in your brain, for me it is the small things that really warm my heart. The help making banana bread may be forgettable in a few years, it is so nurturing right now.

    Many hugs and positive healing vibes sent to you and your MI friends family.

  409. I’m sorry about your friend’s loss. Thank you for the reminder…those what ifs are scary.

  410. as i neared the end of this post, with the photo of that heavy Florida sunset, i thought to myself, “yes. this is what it looks like when we arrive at a place of complicated peace.”

    as parents, we do our best to sail past this abyss of loss. and my heart always tumbles a bit when i hear of someone unexpectedly being sucked into the dark and deep. your post reminds us to not only cherish these little promises of heaven known as our children, it also reminds us that our empathy emplores us to cast out lines of comfort to those caught in vortex of pain.

    you can’t save them from being pulled into this dreaded void, but your line can ensure they aren’t lost forever at its bottom.

    big love.

  411. I’m so sorry for the loss of your friends child! Her family is in my prayers.

  412. Oh gosh, it’s just not fair. I’m so sorry to hear about this tragedy – or any tragedy, involving a child so full of promise.
    Your Dad’s message, btw, rocks.

  413. A beautiful post, yet again. My heart is heavy with the news of the loss…

  414. I am sorry to hear of this loss – a friend of mine (who I always happen to be pregnant alongside) lost her month.5 old baby girl overnight to SIDS. My mind became a torture device and there’s been a nagging discomfort ever since — not to make it about me. I think I just felt the sympathy too strongly because it breaks our hearts for their mamas and anyone who loves them, hugs them, holds them. I don’t want to know that feeling! I’ve even gotten into this odd habit of a nightly prayer – same words each night. I just cannot go to sleep without saying the words and placing my hand in the direction of each of my 3 children. Have you ever read Waterbugs & Dragonflies? It’s a children’s book explaining death, but I swear I feel like it’s for the mamas. Here’s the link: http://www.amazon.com/Water-Bugs-Dragonflies-Explaining-Children/dp/0829818588/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1296687470&sr=1-1 (FYI– They make a coloring book too – and it still has the words in it – color your way to healing!)

  415. So sorry to hear of your friend’s loss. It reminds us of how precious our time here is. Sending a prayer for your friend and her family during this tough time.

  416. So sorry about your friends and their loss. They are in my thoughts and prayers tonight.

  417. So sorry for the loss of your friend’s little boy. I’ll keep their family in my prayers.

  418. We just had a very similar experience. A week ago Saturday one of our dearest families friend found their 20 month old son passed away in the night. It ROCKED me to the core. My heart has been aching non-stop for this friend of ours. I cannot imagine the pain. The autopsy found no reason as to why he passed. The family truly believes it was his time and God needed him on the other side. That brings them comfort, but the pain is so intense. I have been holding my baby close. Life really can be so fragile. I thank God every day I have with my son.

  419. The worst things imaginable to me before I had children are NOTHING compared to the worst things imaginable now…. So sad for your friend…. Last year my girlfriend had to say goodbye to her little 3 year old, husband, and life as cancer took her. That too is something I couldn’t imagine having to face.

    I have the feeling I will be reading today’s blog post in the future to help me in difficult times. Thanks for sharing your experience and wisdom, Kelle. It’s true, life is sacred and beyond precious, but it’s also silly and wild and outrageous! What’s that book, the unbearable lightness of being? I think that’s another way of looking at it :)

  420. The ache that you are feeling will pass. We too have experienced the loss of a friends child. A child I had taught tom tie his shoes. My girls played ball with him, chased him around the school yard,we ate dinners with his family and yelled at Little League games together. When I got the news, my world stopped. My heart broke into a million pieces and my cells were screaming WHY?WHY? WHY? How does a child die?
    Healing takes time, getting the words out that he died, will take time.
    You will heal and so will is family. There will always and forever be a whole where he lived. The loss is forever, but so are the memories.

  421. I am so sorry about your friend’s loss. It is an aweful experience to lose someone you love and so suddenly/tragically.

    21 years ago this May, my sweet precious nephew was taken from us in a fire at age 5. My brother was unable to save him and thought he was going to get out. He was only able to save my neice who was 2 at the time. My neice and brother suffered 2nd and 3rd degree burns and in the hospital for weeks. That was the worst time of our lives.

    ((((HUGS))))

  422. Just read this And while pain does not flow well with what we all have in mind for our future and what we strive every to day to achieve, it is a part of this world and the great catalyst for challenging us to love bigger and better every day.”

    So powerful and speaks to someone like me that things about ‘what if’ and ‘when’…..and afterlife etc…
    I actually quoted you on my fb and linked to your beautiful site. Hope that’s okay-all credit given:)

  423. Another beautifully written reminder to soak in every precious moment. I am so sorry for your friends’ loss and pray that they find peace and healing soon. No parent should ever have to bury their child.

  424. Those moments of acute awareness of reality are never easy, but, like you said, sometimes needed for us to appreciate what is around us. Praying for your friends!

  425. I’m so, so sorry for your friends. This is so sad…

  426. Kelle, I love your writing, thoughts and photos – such an inspirational woman! My favorite part of this post was how you point out that the “Unimportant has its place too–balancing the defining moments, softening the blows.” You know, I have never thought about it that way – it really puts into perspective the routine of our day and really defines that Unimportant truly is extremely Important and that we should not take even this for granted. Love your take on life!

  427. That is so sad. I can not even imagine losing a child. We had a boy die from sleading and he went in the road by us in southern mi. I will keep you all in our prayers.

  428. I needed to hear this. So, thank you. Keep enjoying the small things!

  429. awww…I live in Michigan and saw the news story about your friend’s son. I’m so sorry for you and for his whole family. :( Life truly is a gift and you never really know what might happen.

  430. Praying for your friends. <3

  431. I think this may be the first time I have ever posted a comment. I have been stalking your blog for quite a while. About 2 months after losing my daughter to stillbirth @ 35 weeks gestation. It was at that moment that I realized that I would have given anything to have y baby girl…even if she had not been normal….our biggest fear through the pregnancy was that our baby would have Downs or spina bifida or some other birth or chromosomal defect. Never in our 35 weeks did we think we would have to go through the worst case scenario….the loss of our child, our first born. I have been following you, because your strength and love for Nella is inspirational. I thank you for this. Hold those girls close, and enjoy every moment. The loss of a child is the most heart wrenching experience, and I am praying for your friend! No matter what the age, it is never easy. I hope they can find peace, and I am sure your family will be there to support and love this family during this difficult time….Hugs to all of you
    ~Erin
    journeyoflifeandluv.blogspot.com

  432. So sorry for your friends lost, I hope they know there is a community of people out there who care and are praying for her healing.

    Love the pictures .

    Love and Blessings
    the doughtys

  433. The passing of a child is always so tragic, my thoughts are with them. I read a quote today: “From winter comes spring, from death comes life.” From death, we cherish the lives around us even more…

  434. thank you for giving words to this feeling of utter fear of losing what means most. Three years ago, my dad passed away unexpectedly from a brain aneurysm. sometimes it feels like i have stuffed my grief into an innermost pocket in my heart, because if i allow myself to think about how much i miss him, and all the things that i can no longer share with him… or even the fear of losing my mom or sister… nothing feels safe or secure. thank you for acknowledging that sometimes we need the Unimportant, because the depth of the Important is sometimes too overwhelming.

  435. So sorry to hear of the tragic loss of someone’s little boy. It does shock you into holding your loved ones tight.

  436. So sad and devastating. It is news like that that does make us hold our babies closer and enjoy every moment with them. Praying for your friends tonight.

  437. Your blog always makes me love life a little more. This post is absolutely heartbreaking and my prayers are with your friend’s family.

  438. How incredibly devistating. I am so sorry for your friends loss. I couldn’t imagine the hurt she is going through.
    Your post made me grab my boys and love them up. Thanks for that. I need that every now again…to realize not to take the small things for granted.

    xoxo

    jennie

  439. I lost a son almost a year ago. I suppose it’s like being shaken, except that you’re shaken so hard the world cracks wide open, and there’s no pulling the crack back together. There’s only living in it and planting good things where the sun shines.

    I suppose the recognition arrived at some point in the grief: every moment dies as it passes. I can only play with my living son on the day he turns eleven months old for one day. He laughs this way right now, and in any other moment it won’t be quite the same. Life ends, but that seems so far off; I live each moment the best way I can at the time, because it’s about to go away.

  440. A friend lost their 11 year old to a cancer he battled from the age of 4 this past October. That funeral was so beautiful, and terrible.

    I picked my 2 year old up from daycare at about 8pm that night, and immediately burst into thankful weeping upon seeing her sleeping form. We are blessed.

  441. So very sad about your friends son. I too have had moments when I am shaken and as scary and as heartbreaking as they can be, they are necessary. To remind us of where we are, who we are and what we have.

    Love your new header.

    Oh and love the picture of the sky and treetops in the last post~ mind if I borrow it as a screen saver? I love the different perspective

  442. I agree…..being shaken sometimes is what it takes to make things make more sense. The loss of a child is so unbelievably sad:(

  443. I have been thinking about that family since you told me. My prayers and thoughts are with them and I do cherish the moments I have with Baylee even more when you here how life can change suddenly. Life is too short to not stop to smell the roses.

  444. As I read the begining of your post I was struck by two things. To be shaken… in a ground shifting kind of way – I know that awful feeling. And then the wisdom of those three simple words “for a moment”. I am a women who can be shaken to my core “for a moment”, but then I will come back, better, every time.
    I’m thankful for your post.
    Sending peace to all those touched by this loss.

  445. My heart goes out to your friends family :( A parents biggest fear in life is saying goodbye.
    A close friend of mine and I were pregnant together, she lost her baby at 10 days old, 2 days after my baby was born…makes me treasure every moment with my kids just that much more! lots of prayers.

  446. I don’t know if you get around to reading all your comments, but if you do your pictures have inspired me. You capture every moment that I love and hope to capture on my own little one.

    Your frames are so adorable and as soon as my baby gets here I’m painting some in the his color theme and putting my photos in there.

    Thank you for your beautiful words and sharing your adorable little’s with us.

  447. I’m so sorry for your loss. How truly devastating! My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  448. We are praying for your friends and their family. How devastating–and like you, it makes me want to hold my little ones and appreciate the time we do have with them.
    That sunset picture calmed me. God gives amazing reminders that somehow, all will be well and all shall be well (to quote Julian of Norwich).

  449. I know things like this happen. We all KNOW it can happen, but never expect it. It does take moments like this to bring us back to what’s important for a little while, before we drift back to the Unimportant.

    I’m so sorry for your friends. I hope in the days to come they can find some peace.

  450. Kellie I am so sorry to hear about your friends son. They will be in my thoughs and prayers.

  451. keeping your friends in my heart today. And will hold my husband extra tight tonight. you’re a beautiful writer, kelle. XO

  452. I just participated in a fundraiser for a family whose little girl (she’s 3) was just diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer. After I read about it, I felt so stupid and ridiculous about how frustrated I’d been with my son (who’s 3) over potty training. I can’t imagine. I just can’t imagine…

  453. hugs to you and hugs to that family! makes my heart ache.

    total aside: i know they are very young but i feel like nella and my harrison would make just about the cutest couple on the planet.

  454. prayers for that family

  455. Song: If tomorrow never comes.
    Artist: Reba
    It says it all. She has only performed this song once. She wrote it for her entire band she lost in a plane crash.
    Hold tight & never let go.

  456. “And while pain does not flow well with what we all have in mind for our future and what we strive every to day to achieve, it is a part of this world and the great catalyst for challenging us to love bigger and better every day.” Everyday that I read your blog I learn something new, and you inspire me. This particular sentence that you wrote is SO TRUE and it is why I believe that we don’t get the good without the bad sometimes. I am so sorry for your friends’ loss, but know that he is with God smiling down from heaven.

  457. That accident took place not far from where I live. I got goose bumps when I heard the news story. A simple, joyful time of sledding turning into such tragedy. So sorry for the loss of their son and the grief they are experiencing. Praying for God’s comfort in their lives both now and in the future.

  458. Very sad to hear of such a young life gone…just like that! My thoughts and prayers are with this family that you know! It is stories like this that make you want to keep your children close…as long as possible! xo

  459. I am so sorry your heart was broken. I am sending prayers for your friends and those who loved that little boy. I hope your heart heals soon.

  460. May God’s gentle hand have hold over this family as they journey through this next year. I cannot imagine.

  461. My thoughts and prayers go out to that little boys family. I’d gladly send them strength in this terrible time where things become even harder to bare. I remember in my senior year of class a girl in my year died in a tragic car accident. Everyone was shaken, but seeing her mother torn apart as we went to the viewing and hugging her while telling her she’s in our prayers….I don’t know how anyone could live through that. But you are right. We are born, and we will die, but we should live every day preciously; store the memories, and yet remember that the unimportant must mix with the important to balance out and create this perfect life we live.

  462. Your words today brought tears, as I thought about a friend’s 4-week old baby on a ventilator. You have a gift for somehow knowing the exact words to write that will touch people’s lives at just the right time.

  463. OMG! That is totally sad and prayers go out to them. I can’t even begin to imagine ho to cope with something like that. It is a tragic reminder to ‘live’ everyday to its fullest. Thanks for sharing.

  464. I’m so sad to hear about your friend. How do you even begin to heal from something like this? But somehow, some way, we do. Praying for such peace and comfort over your friends.

  465. Kelle, I so sympathize with what your friends are going through and am so sorry for their loss.

    I lost my first grandchild 2 years ago, and never thought I could get over the numbing shock of it all. He was a loving boy who lived his 20 years with everything he had. I have to go on because he would have wanted that. I honor him every day and smile when I think of him. He is my Angel looking over all of us. It forever changes you and absolutely shows you that family IS the most important thing.

    Your friends are in my thoughts and prayers and I pray they will find the strength to get through this.

  466. Well hey, how weird, I know the winner of the last post. Haha.

    That is awful about your friend’s son. I can’t imagine the pain. God bless.

  467. What a TRAGEDY. I think I’m going to go curl up next to my kiddos…

  468. I’m glad I rocked my little one for a bit longer tonight.

  469. I am very sorry about your friend’s loss. They will be in my prayers. My daughter who will be one soon swallowed some Desitin this evening and I got so scared after reading the warning of possible poison hazard. The poison control told me she should be fine but after reading your blog today and this incident it really made me appreciate what I have. My daughter is my life and I will spend more time with her tomorrow morning before going to work. Take care and enjoy your little ones before they grow up too fast!

  470. So sorry about your friends loss. I will remember to tell the people in my life that I love them, more often.

  471. My heart breaks for this family. I will pray for them. Struggling with our own loss these days – but nothing can compare to the loss of a child.

    Tears, smiles and beauty…thank you, Kelle – for another inspiring post.

  472. Being a nurse for many years you can never make sense of some of the tragic things that happen to good people. I have spent many many hours trying to rationalize events that make no sense. After many shifts I would go home and hug my boy just a bit tighter, make sure his seatbelt was buckled “just on more time” Hold me breath as he rode around the cul d sac on his bike. As mothers we are given these precious little gifts to try and nuture and protect. Sometimes no matter how hard we try harm comes to them. I am so sad for your friend and cannot imagine the intense pain and suffering she is going thru. I hope with friends like you she will find the strength to move on and live for the memory of her speical gift that she was able to love a nuture, even if it was a brief time. Events like this make us all stand back and enjoy the small things and decide what the important things in life are! Sending all my prayers to your special friend.

  473. Thank you, as always, for the grounding reality check. I’ll throw out the much too dog-eared Anthropologie catalog and embrace my little one and husband a bit tighter and more presently….and will pray deeply for the sweet boy’s mommy, who is likely experiencing the pain none of us ever want to know.

  474. I do not even have the words to express how sorry I am to hear of your loss.I did not comment right away because all I wanted to do was hold my babies. My thoughts and prayers are with your dear friend. And you. It takes such a heartbreaking tragedy to remind us of what really matters. Today I nursed a little longer,squeezed a little tighter,played a little harder and stared a little longer.All my love Kelle~Chantelle

  475. I am so deeply sorry to hear of your friend’s terrible loss. I don’t have the words. But you did in your beautiful post and my girls are also my little reminders. Each day, each moment with them is a blessing and they truly are the loves of my life.
    Thank you for your words.

  476. I have said before that if I knew how much I would love my children, I don’t know if I would have had them. It’s frightening. And equally wonderful. Praying for your friends.

  477. It’s shaken me as well, and so I can’t imagine knowing them… shaken to the core for sure. Thanks you again for sharing, for reminding, for encouraging! :)

    ~Tabitha

  478. I will diligently pray for God’s peace to surround their family and loved ones.

  479. I am so sorry for your friends great loss — that is horrific! I’m going to hug my girls tighter & kiss them all over right now! and every chance I get… not that we need reminders but every now & then a post like this makes me realize all over again how fortunate we are!!
    -s

  480. Sending prayers and love to your friends tonight. After reading this post, and having a family friend enjoy his last couple days of life, with his two young girls and wife, I hugged my friends a little tighter, and called my family just to say ‘I love you’. Life is so precious. We never know when it will be swept out from under us. Far far too fast, far far to soon. Enjoy your little angels.

  481. Life is not fair sometimes, my friend and her husband were killed in a car accident this summer leaving behind their 7 week old baby who by a miracle from heaven survived! While tragedy struck and there is so much pain in the hearts of many that baby girl has brought joy and is showing that life can go on…. even when it feels like it can’t. With the bad we get shown the good and not to take it for granted!

  482. So very sorry for your loss. Yes, the shaken moments make us more solid in the end. I was told while pregnant that “the moment you know you’re a parent is the moment you begin worrying for the rest of your life. So true.

    Peace be still-Tracy

  483. I’ve never been so afraid of losing something as I am now that I have my daughter. The fear of the unknown, however, can never match the blessing of having her. Praying for your friends tonight.

  484. My sincerest condolences on our friends loss….Tragedies such as that put life into perspective… I cannot imagine what it must be like to have to bury a child. It makes me feel the need to run and love on my sleeping babes right now.

  485. That is so devastating. I was shaken once when my 4 yo daughter disappeared at the mall. She just slipped away from me so quickly. We found her 30 minutes later, and she was fine, but I can honestly say it was the worst 30 minutes of my life. It was almost 4 years ago but I can still feel the horror. I squeezed her SO tight when we found her. Thanks for the beautiful post!

  486. I believe this blog post will speak to you, as it did me. Hopefully other readers here will stop and read it as well.

    http://babynumber10.blogspot.com/2011/01/pure-love-giveaway.html

  487. How true this is. We had a tragic day in our area when a principal was shot a killed by an employee up the road from my school. It puts things into perspective and I came home as soon as I could to hug, hold and breathe them in. You don’t know when life will be taken so enjoy and breathe it all in. Thank you for this post.

  488. Nella is becoming such a little lady in all of her photos. She looks like she grew months overnight!

    And thank you for sharing the sledding tragedy. You’re right that being shaken a bit can be good at times. Praying for those dealing with the horrible loss, and I’m going in to sneak an extra few kisses in to my sweet sleeping little boy right now.

  489. Oh, man. What a story. Gotta get off the computer and go tuck my babies in one more time tonight.

  490. Kelle-praying for that dear family and letting my heart break for them. Treasuring my blessings every day God give me with them. Your girls are just too beautiful, it kills me. Their faces always bring a smile on my face- such innocents and sweetness. Keep drinking it in and sharing the overflow.

  491. I am so sorry to hear about your friend. My thoughts go out to their family. So very sad. But the sun always comes up.
    I’d also like to let you know that little Nella’s smile is so, so infectious.
    and i would LOVE a gift certificate to Elizabeth St. to help glorify my Everly’s vintage carnival themed 1st birthday party!

  492. so sorry for the loss, makes you realize what is most important in your life.

  493. so sorry for the loss, makes you realize what is most important in your life.

  494. I will definitely be praying for you and those affected by this tragedy. :( Life is precious and too often we neglect to realize the importance of those close to us and how much they truly impact our lives.

    From a college girl stuck in the snow in TEXAS of all places, I have loved checking in on your blog and seeing the beautiful Florida sunsets and weather during my snow days. :)

  495. What a gorgeous post – as all of your posts are. But this one is especially poignant. Your way with words is a gift. Thank you for sharing it.
    I’m sorry for your friend’s loss. It makes my stomach feel like an empty pit to read about it.
    :(

  496. this day and this memory will haunt you – let it teach you to hug tigher and kiss more EVERY day, forever!
    prayers for your friend.

  497. I am so sad to hear of your friends loss. I know what you mean about that feeling of “I don’t think I would survive that”. I hope that the family can find peace and comfort somewhere. Thanks for your words, always encouraging me to live and love deeper.

  498. One of my dear friends lost her dad to cancer last week. To be in college and have that happen, it just shakes to the core. I wanted so badly to see my dad, to know he was okay. But alas, I live 2,000 miles away. Thanks for sharing this.

  499. How tragically devastating for your friends and family. My thoughts and prayers are with you all. Because of situations like this, we love a little harder and we are reminded to appreciate life for what it is. I completely agree with you. I can’t imagine losing my baby. I’ve watched it happen to a friend of mine and I just can’t get over how painful it was for me, let alone her family. Wishing you all peace of the heart and mind.

  500. I am feeling shaken as well as a family near to my heart also lost their 2 year old son to brain cancer. I am so sorry to hear of this tragedy. Praying for you and your friends and their family. Such a heartache and a tragic Monday for the both of us. Tough to wrap our brains around such loss-Jenny

  501. I am so sorry to hear of the little boy. I know how you felt though when you heard the news, and felt like you had to run to your littles and hug them tighter. My friend’s little girl, who is 3, was diagnosed with leukemia on Christmas Eve. It is so hard to imagine what she is going through and every day I pray for her and cry. It makes me realize how life can be so fragile sometimes and to take in every moment with my little girl! I snuggle her more and kiss her more and I know that it wont take the pain away from my friend and her daughter, but one can hope there is enough love in the world to help her.
    My thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the little boy. xoxo

  502. I’m so very sorry for your friends loss. Their family will be in my toughts and prayers. I’m gonna hug and kiss my babies a few more times tonight because tragedies like this remind you of how precious life is.

  503. We will be praying for your friends. I can’t imagine. I’ll be holding mine tighter tomorrow!

  504. such a hard and devasting thing for any family to go through..
    your words, as always, are so meaningful..
    love too what poppa wrote..
    ♥♥♥

  505. I am so sorry for their loss. How heartbreaking. It hurts to know of their pain. It is my greatest fear that something will happen to my Kaish. When I think of it my heart is gripped with fear. I just want to protect him forever.

  506. It’s amazing the lessons we can learn in the face of tragedy & adversity. Your words brought tears to my eyes, & your pictures made me smile.

  507. I had to read this horribly sad story on your blog b/c I never watch the news, too depressing. This family is from Rochester, minutes from my home. May God bless this family & know that although we don’t know each other, our hearts grieve with them!

  508. Being shaken is a hard part of life that can never be prepared for.
    Please know that Tom, Yvonne, Connor and all those that love them are in my prayers. May God Bless their hearts and send them warmth and healing.

  509. My heart goes out to your friend and her family. Holding my baby close tonight.

  510. Kelle,
    I am so sorry to hear about your friend’s son. Thank you for sharing and encouraging us to take a little more time with our kiddos today.

    I tried to do that today and painted with my 3 year old…it was fun!

    Take care!

  511. ….and now, my friend – my friend whom I’ve never met, whose life I’ve only shared in the beautiful glimpses posted on a blog – now that the Starbucks Barista has mopped up the last of the chai-tea-covered-floor, now that you have had the much-needed and totally understandable opportunity to reassure yourself that your own littles are indeed OK, now that you have spent a day totally present with those you love and need the most, now that you have found some measure of peace, I hope that you have taken the terrifying, but most important step of reaching out to your friend in real and tangible ways.

    I hope that the ocean of support and love that has been poured all over you – from friends, family, & those faithful Cyberspace blog-readers, who have sent it to you in spades, will serve to arm you now, as you help a friend.

    Because, Kelle – let me tell you – nothing – absolutely nothing else – can produce a pain level equal to that of losing a child.

    I have no wish to offend – or argue about “pain levels” – because I know that pain is pain. Having said that – let me say again – nothing – absolutely nothing else – can produce a pain level equal to that of losing a child.

    Your friend will need an army of angels – angels to talk to her, to hug her, to do her laundry, wash her floors, hug her other children, if she has them, … to prepare meals, and make sure that she changes her underwear every day. She will need drivers, kleenex holders (that can hug her and wipe her nose at the same time!) She and her husband – in fact, the whole family – will need a whole platoon of invisible angels – behind the scenes – just gettin’ ‘er done! – while at the same time, taking their cues from the bereaved Mom and Dad. This platoon of angels must be willing to put their own lives and worries aside for awhile – because in that while, there won’t be any time for anyone but two grieving, shell-shocked parents – surrounded by equally shell-shocked family members – grandparents, aunts, uncles, and siblings to the little guy who has just been reclaimed by Heaven.

    It ain’t a pretty job – but, if anyone is capable of it, tis you! Maybe you – and a few of those amazing ladies you so proudly and lovingly claim as your net!

    I will pray for your friends – that they will be wrapped in love and support, during this time that can only be described as Hell on Earth.

    I will pray that the day will come when they will begin to heal – and – again feel a measure of peace, be able to be fully present with their own – but changed – family, and, to appreciate all that will still be beautiful in the world – even though it will never, ever, ever again be the same world….

    Take care………Rosemary

  512. I am so sorry to hear this horrible tradgedy. I will be praying for this family!
    XOXO

    ps- we do need unimportant, I totally agree

  513. So so sorry to hear this terrible and heartbreaking news.

  514. Ah stuff like that is so unfair, so…hard to respond to. No formula, just time and being honest with your feelings.

    And, I think you are right, little, big, life. It’s all valuable. But, really great to stop and think lakeside when petty stuff is unimportant and relationships are of the highest importance. All we have is NOW.

    Now? I love Nella in her new diapers, new art on the walls, Lainey’s skinny smile. What if we don’t have tomorrow? We will live well today.

    xo

  515. I’m a mama to 8 y/o twin boys and a 6 y/o daughter, also a surrogate to two little boys (ages 3 and 8 months). I cannot imagine the pain this mother and family is going through. Oh my gosh, my chest just got so tight reading this, and I don’t even know them.

    So sorry, Kelle. :(

  516. I’m so sorry for your friends’ loss. My heartfelt sympathy to them.
    As usual your photos and words are beautiful Kelle.
    xo

  517. We had a choking scare her last week. I am still reeling from it and cannot put words down to describe my feelings. They will come soon enough.

    Thank you for your words.

  518. Holding my daughter tightly today. Reminded to not take any day for granted. Thank you, and wishing your friend a lot of strength.

  519. I feel that some souls are so special and sweet that they need very little time here on earth before they are able to return to Him. My heart goes out to your friend’s family.

    on another note…….

    Does Nella have brown in her eyes?!?!? She’s so stinkin’ cute! Love the b/w pic of big sis and lil’ sis cuddling. They are adorable.

  520. Good, bad, happy, sad. It is all so fleeting. Living in the present is the best way to hold the moments more deeply. Peace to you, your friends in MI, your readers, to all of us.

  521. After reading this, I snuck into my three little birds’ bedrooms and stroked their hair and kissed their cheeks and whispered I love you’s. I have three boys and one on the way and cannot fathom the pain of losing one of them.
    Because of your soft, sweet heart that shared itself with all of us, the air is positively saturated with prayers tonight; for a family we don’t even know.
    And that is what living a meaningful life is all about.

  522. Wow that is so sad! I will be praying for the family during this sad time.

    Love the sunset pic (and the pics of the girls of course) :)

  523. So sorry to hear of your friend’s loss… there really are no words to express how deep that pain must be. I love what you wrote about the important/unimportant balance… how the two mixed together are what makes the good stuff recognizable as “good” stuff. Hugging my boys tighter tonight. My thoughts are drifting East toward Michigan, love and light and peace during this dark time.
    xo
    Kate

  524. Kelle – I have sometimes wondered why I read your blog, when sometimes the reminders of when my two sons were that little and I was in the same stage in life, are just too painful. I lost my 29-yr old son to suicide two years ago. It still seems impossible. I can still remember trying to hold onto every second when they were little, and only imagining my worst fears. Now, more than I ever feared in my worst imaginings has happened. And I still don’t every day appreciate the preciousness of those I still have and get to love for as long as I have them. If we thought about how fleeting everything is every second, we couldn’t possibly just relax and live in that moment. So…and amazingly, I am sometimes, and for brief moments, finding peace in the memories of a beautiful life,well lived, if only for a brief time, and I hang on for dear life to all I can find that is good and beautiful in this world. You, dear lady, and your little blog, are just one of those good things. Because you help to remind me that the world is still a beautiful place full of families loving each other, my own included. For that, I thank you.

  525. Gosh Kelle…I’m sure I speak for so many: thank you for reminding us of what’s so important and detailing it the way you do. Your second daughter has magic (not just because of that magic extra chromosome), but because you have magic. Bringing so many readers together in an often cold competitive world. I cry when I hear children dying or suffering, people being beaten or humiliated, or even people making fun of those who aren’t “just like them.” So sad to hear about your friend and child. At this point, I’m just really speechless. Trying to find the right words & can’t. God Bless them during this time of sorrow and give them strength.

  526. Awwww, like many others here I had tears over your post. I’m so, so sorry that this little man doesn’t get to grow up and experience the wonders of being on this earth. And my heart aches for his mother, who has to figure out how to live without the light of her life. I’m so, so sorry :(

  527. I am so sorry for your friend. I can’t imagine the heart break of losing a child.

    We have just lived through a terrifying and horrific 24 hours of Cyclone Yasi and are so thankful at this moment to come out intact on the otherside. Everywhere around us there is destruction though … bad things happen to good people and it sucks.

    I hope that you can all find comfort in the arms of each other during this very sad time.

  528. Tell your friend you love her, that you are there for her now while it is raw & later when she needs to talk, that you will do what you can for her. There wont be anything much right now, but later, she will need a shoulder to cry on & an ear to listen. Later, when most others have let the memory dim, your friend will need you more.
    I am so very sad for your friend, there are no words.
    My teenage daughter, Aleks, died less than a month ago & I understand some of what your friend feels. There are no words to express how one feels, that can be said that help, to convey the pain. There are simply No Words.
    Someone sent me a quote that I can’t find & need to paraphrase, essentially it said that ‘It hurts so much because I loved my child so much’. I miss my Aleks. Your friend will miss her little man, it will hurt so much. Be there for her.
    Hold your girls tight & love them & let them know you love them.

  529. Ohh:( that are bad news. I cant imagine ur frien`s pain. Im sendidng all my love to her.
    btw Thank you for this post. I needed so much to remind me what is the most important in life.

  530. I live in Michigan and on Monday heard from my husband that a friend of a friend had lost their 8 y/o son in an accident, my heart broke for that family, I can’t even imagine.

  531. My thoughts and prayers are with your friends. I always tell my sister to make sure her son wears a helmet when sledding…she mocks me. Life is just to short to take it for granted.

  532. I LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog. You have an amazing gift with words. You can easily feel your joy and pain and it always takes me away. Thank you for helping me enjoy the little things.

  533. Oh my, I can’t even imagine the heartbreak. It’s something you don’t really understand until you are a mama – that feeling that they are so intrinsically entwined with your heart, with your soul. I don’t know them, but my heart caught in my throat when I read this. Your friend will be drowning right now – I know you can be a life raft for her, whatever she needs, whenever she needs it.
    p.s. I love the picture of Nella on the bed with her teddy. And love the new banner too. xx

  534. Holding you and your friends in my thoughts and prayers. Thank you for reminding us that unfortunately we have to go to that place sometimes in order to remind ourselves to be more present – hug tighter, love stronger, and be oh-so-grateful for this wonderful and precious life.

  535. I have to say . . . I’m your newest daily reader.

    The way that you wrap us up in your world with so much warm and fuzzy.

    You are a breath of fresh air for me and my “issues” and always leave your site feeling inspired and encouraged.

    Tonight I went in, wrapped up my sleeping baby in my arms and just snuggled. I sat and ran my fingers through his hair, memorizing the outline of his delicious chunky cheeks… and I prayed for your friend in Michigan. I prayed with a fierceness that I haven’t felt in a long time.

    Thank you for bring this to our horizon. Sometimes it’s so easy to just be so focused on our own little bubble land that we forget all isn’t right in the world!

  536. First I must say how very sorry I am about your friends child. That is and will always be my greatest fear! Please pass along my sympathy!

    I have had a busy few days and didn’t see your post about “loving where you live” until today. I felt compelled to tell you where my safe haven is although it seems so simple to others.

    We live in a very rural part of NC. What I call, the good ole’ country! It’s quite common to hear farmers on their tractors wondering our roads in the evenings. My peaceful escape is sitting in an open field beside our house with freshly cut round hay bails as far as you can see. Where the warmth of the afternoon sun is sinking down below the the horizon, where earth meets the sky. In the background, hearing the sounds of my daughter and the neighborhood children’s laughter as they continuously slide off those big round hay bails! To them, it’s better than any amusement park sliding board that man can build. Some nights, there is even a little extra icing on the cake with a couple of horseback riders off in the distance who are enjoying the a ride of the open field too. Talk about peace?! In this moment, all in the world is right…Pure peace withing my soul!

  537. Enjoy this moment- For this moment is your life.

  538. Enjoy this moment- For this moment is your life.

  539. I live in SW Michigan and have heard the story on the news. To know that it’s affected you as well… it’s a small world, a world that can be cruel sometimes. Sometimes we need a reminder to love our children harder – as if that was actually possible. But it is.

    My reminder this morning was my first listen of Taylor Swift’s “Never Grow Up.” It’s true that I’m pregnant and have those hormones running around in me, but I laid in bed sobbing. If you haven’t already heard it, it’s worth the listen. With a box of Kleenex.

  540. What devastating news. I have 3 girls and my oldest is 8. This definitely brought a tear to my eye and love into my heart. Thank you for sharing and may God Bless your friend.

    Your photos continue to inspire me, the last photo of Nella on the bed is my favourite today. Very real. I love the look of wonder in little ones eyes.

  541. yes. a great reminder that we are not promised tomorrow, nor that life will be easy. life is so very hard. treasure the todays. ~mis.

  542. As I’m reading this, Keep Breathing is playing on your playlist. so appropriate. Thank you thank you for the reminders to love the ones in our lives with every breath, as long as we have them.
    The sweet mermaid that Nella is holding is just like one that our sweet friend Katie had. We lost her to a brain tumor a year ago. She had just turned 10.

    http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/katieseaman

  543. so sorry to hear the devastating news. thoughts and {hugs} are with you. an unfortunate reminder to always kiss and hug and love on the littles in our lives.

  544. “We are vulnerable beings. We were born, and we will die. But today, while we breathe, we live deliberately.”

    Very well said. May it be true of my life. We are here for but a sliver of time, compared to eternity.

  545. So incredibly saddened by your friends great loss. I often do the “what ifs” in my mind as well. It really does make you pull them in a little closer and kiss them just one more (okay two or three) more times.

    Tara

  546. Kelle,

    Could I also ask where you got Lainey’s dress in the pic with her Grandma Krissy doll? I am in love with the pattern and colors and would love it for my girl’s birthday photo shoot. Thank you! :)

    Tara

  547. Kelle.. I am so sorry for your friend’s loss. How very sad. It will definitely make me hug my girl tighter when I get home this evening. Take care.

  548. I will pray for that family! How very very sad. I am so thankful that our God is loving and merciful. He has planned each of our days and carries us through. I trust him with those I love most…his plan for them is sure and solid. That is what brings me comfort! I so want to live each moment I’m given with them to the fullest. This life is brief and fleeting…we’re living for something bigger!

  549. How sad. I’m sorry for your loss. I was shaken this Monday as well, when I lost a friend. She was only 30 and as the mother of five, the oldest only eight years old, she will be greatly missed. I love how you said that being shaken a bit can be good because things seem to settle more solidly… this week I have kissed my two kids and husband and cherished them just a little more. I want to make sure they know how much I love them!

  550. As so many times before, I am in tears reading this post. My heart goes out to your friend who lost her son. Today I will hug my own two son’s a little longer, give a few more kisses and pay more attention.

  551. Kelle, I am so sorry to your friends for their loss. I know exactly how shaken you feel. In December I got news that a friend of mine had lost her 13 yr old son in a gun accident, in their home. I was shaken to the core. I couldn’t stop crying and as the whap whap of my tears hit the laptop keyboard, my little girls were scared and asking me what was wrong. All I could do them was tell them I was crying because I love them so much and would be lost without them. I too held them a little tighter and watched them a little closer. It is never easy to see your friends hurting in the worst way my mind can imagine, and attending that little boys funeral was very hard. As soon as I walked in there was a plaque that said “I love you to the moon and back”. My knees almost buckled. This is what me and my girls have said to each other every day since they were born. I will pray for your friends to have strength and healing :(

  552. I am so, so very sorry to hear about your friend’s son! It’s terrible that disasters like this happen. Much love and prayers to your friend and her family!

  553. I can’t imagine the pain, heart ache, and devastation your friends must be experiencing. They are in my thoughts and prayers!! Sending them hugs from Manitoba, Canada.

  554. I don’t have the right words. So just know that I am so so sorry that this had to happen. I too, feel very unprepared when I hear these things and too feel the need to hold my baby longer, kiss her more and tell her I love her more often. Your friends are in my thoughts.

  555. Sending prayers to Michigan… I can only imagine the loss they are feeling. Will be giving my little love extra kisses today.

  556. my heart aches for that family. i’m so sorry. i have a friend who lost her son in an accident last December and I know that feeling of wanting to drop everything and be with your kids the moment you hear the devastating news. It’s so true that it makes us really breathe them in…even more than normal.
    On a lighter note, the pictures in this post are so beautiful. And my son makes his stick people with no bodies just like Lainey :)
    xo
    Kris

  557. I’m praying for your friend & her family. That God just gives them the strength, peace & comfort that they need during this time & in the days & years ahead.

  558. So sorry of your friends loss. It does remind us to hold them tight, take it all in, love them *too* much…

  559. I’m so sorry to hear of your friend’s loss. I, like so many others, can’t even imagine what pain they must be going through right now. I wish them peace.

  560. wow! praying for your friend and her family and friends. makes you stop and think. my kids go sledding all the time, but you can’t keep them inside sitting still. very tragic.

  561. This post made me also hug my daughter a little tighter last night. It’s hard to go there. To think of those possibilities and for that mother to have to…well, I am praying for her. She’s lucky to have a friend like you.

    aleytac at hotmail dot com

  562. So very hard to even imagine. Praying for the family…

  563. Oh, Kelle, I am so sad to hread this. But I love your words. No one should ever bury their child of any age. So many of the commenters here wrote such great things that I cant even comment on each, as I want to. Love Poppa Rik’s, especially. I am thinking of those affected by this tragedy. Love from the blog mama

  564. Yesterday my husband and I played hooky and took our daughter to San Francisco…it was a “beautifully present in our life” kind of day. Full of love and fun and a little adventure. We’ve dubbed it our secret day. It was random and a little irresponsible. But to come back and read this post, made our choice to be a family, skip work and preschool and just be the three of us for a day, feels to me like it was the best choice we could have made. It was necessary. It was valid and important. Those moments do ground you when the unimportant fill up the day to day grind.
    My heart goes out to any who lose their children before their time and when it hits close to home, it does pull you to a place that is full of fear, hope crashing and heart stopping. My thoughts are with your friends, family and you during this time of loss, confusion, frustration and pain. Envelope that family with all of the love they can’t imagine existed. Be their net.

  565. I know I’m the 600th post on here:)…but I just have to say:

    I just found your blog and I am moved to tears by your beautiful perspective on life, love, family..and enjoying what is really important.

    I read your bio and, I too, was a fifth grade teacher. I swear, there’s something about you that I just got; and that was it.:)

    Your words, and girls, and photos are beautiful; thank you so much for sharing!

    I’m so sorry to hear about your friend’s little boy…my prayers will be with her family!

  566. I am so sorry for the loss of your friend’s child. My prayers are with all that are affected by this tragedy.
    Thank you so very much for this post. You have put into beautiful words the very things I have been thinking about the past few days. I am a “what if” person. I think about the “what ifs” WAY TOO much….I am a worrier…. but motherhood is teaching me to not stay in that fearful place. I try to pray every morning an give my what ifs to God knowing that He will see me through even if one of those what ifs were to happen.
    Thank you again for sharing your heart with us… and your pictures!!!
    ~Ashley
    http://alexnashley.blogspot.com

  567. so very sorry about your friend’s son. what a good reminder for us all, though, to treasure each moment we have with those we love.

  568. i’m sitting with my son on my lap as i read your blog. i read while in the corner of the computer i put on youtube videos of trains and songs. i just realized this is one of those moments for me that has become so special. the newborn is asleep, and it can just be us two again. i forget to take in these moments and appreciate them. thank you for the post. i just discovered your blog and i LOVE it! so truthful. you write how i WISH i could. you write about feelings we all share but cannot find the words for. thank you!

  569. Sometimes being shaken can wake you up to the many blessings we have. I am so sorry for your friend’s loss. Nothing would be worse than that.

  570. I can’t begin to express how sorry I am for the loss…so devestating! You friend & her family are in my prayers.
    Also I LOVE the new picture at the top of your page…ADORABLE:) Also love that you frame her artwork, im going to steal the idea:)

  571. Your friend’s family will be in our thoughts. Reminds us all to let the special people in our lives know every day how much we love them.

  572. Even though we have never met, my heart breaks for the loss of that little boy. Sending prayers to your friend and her family in this time of need.

  573. My condolences to your friends. I can imagine nothing worse. I hugged the baby on my lap just a little closer and blinked away tears. I have been complaining about being housebound with a feverish 6 year old and a ice storm like nothing Dallas has seen, but on reflection, I see that it’s kept my babies close and safe and given me time with them. What more could a Mummy ask for? I’ll hug them all a little closer today and thank my lucky stars that they are all safe and (relatively) well. Thanks for the wake up call. Shame it tends to come at someone else’s great cost.

  574. I’m so sorry for the loss of this little boy! Hold those babies tight!

  575. So so sorry to hear of your friends loss.. I will hug my kids a little tighter today.

    I love your colored frame idea!

  576. Kelle, you are SO right. Yes, the loss of a child rocks you to the core, cuts straight through to your heart. It brings unbearable pain that is indescribable….I have lived it. But it was the zest for life of my amazing little boy that carries me each and every day. That makes me love my other boys deeper, to stop and appreciate every moment, to enjoy the small things.

    I would never wish the loss of a child on anyone. It is unnatural, it is gutwrenching, it is every parent’s worst nightmare. But in the honor of these children who pass before us, we must go on, we must live life to the fullest, we must suck the marrow out of life.

    To do anything less – for me – would be a disrespect to the beautiful little soul who changed my life….for the better. And though there are times when I want nothing more than to curl up in the fetal position and escape the pain, I pick myself up and keep pushing forward. Out of respect for him and all he taught me, I live with wreckless abandon. I cherish each moment with my boys and share my feelings with others a little more freely.
    I live.

    Thank you again, Kelle, for your inspiring words.

  577. I read of your friend’s son in the news Monday and I my heart sank. We were sledding the same day. And it is one of those WHY moments. We, too, had a very unexpectedly loss in our family in January. It is HARD. But somehow, I find myself coming out of it with more grace, love, and a deeper, closeness to God that I didn’t have even three weeks ago. Bless that little boy’s family. May God carry them through this.

  578. how devastating. but it all happens for a reason. it sounds so cliche, but it’s the truth. there is reason behind all of it, and although we don’t understand at times, things are going according to the Grand Plan. we can take comfort in the fact that there is a Plan, but gosh, do i wish that i had just a glimpse into what it entailed. thanks for the post, kelle. tears, again.

  579. There are really no words. I am in tears and can’t even begin to imagine how that would feel. I do appreciate being shaken from time to time. It feels real, it feels like life should. Thank you for sharing.

  580. The “what ifs” always threaten me at night… what if the house caught on fire…could I get us out?
    what if…what if…what if
    I’ve always answered my fears with scritpure and here’s my newest favorite:
    Proverbs 3:24-26 -> when you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. HAVE NO FEAR OF SUDDEN DISASTER or of the ruin that overtakes the wicked, for the LORD will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being snared.

  581. This time last year my grandfather’s health went downhill and it was really overwhelming for me. I still think back on it and him as I lay down to go to bed at night sometimes. It is even sadder with such a young child. Sending you and the family peaceful thoughts.

  582. Many prayers to your friends during this difficult time. I can’t even imagine their pain.

    These past few months have really shaken me up too.

  583. Love your blog ~ thanks for sharing!

  584. So tragic for your friends. I just cannot even imagine the sadness that takes a grip of your being.

    Thinking of the family.

  585. When my daughter was born, I experienced a new level of love and a new level of fear. I remember wondering how I could survive without her now that she existed outside my body. Those raw emotions have gracefully been woven into my everyday life. When someone loses a child, though, that fear is mercilessly brought to the surface again.
    Moms have a connection. Even if we don’t know each other, we know each other. We know each other’s fears and the depths of our love.
    My thoughts are with your friends and I pray they will find strength in the months to come.

  586. My thoughts and prayers are with your friends and their son. May he rest in peace. Off to hug my girls a little tighter today.

  587. A few years back, when my oldest was just a toddler, I learned that a beautifully talented girl I went to school with had died after a long struggle with a chronic illness. She left behind two young children and for a week, I was shaken just as you’ve described. I hadn’t seen her since graduation, but the thought of her death was incomprehensible. I ached at the thought that she would not be there to hold her little ones when they needed her. But as you said, we need these reminders of our fragility to prioritize ourselves when we wallow in selfishness, yet we need the balance of selfishness sometimes to truly enjoy the moment.

    Thoughts and prayers of comfort to that struggling family.

  588. Oh your poor friends. I want to give a hug to that mama so badly. But I also believe in the power of mentally-sent positive thoughts from another mama in hopes that those thoughts will wrap her in love and give her the silent strength to endure.

  589. That is such sad news. Sending prayers for their family in this time of need. I think I will be holding my babies a little tighter from now on.

  590. I can only imagine how much that would shake you! We just had a friend of ours loss their 6 month old due to a illness. It was heartbreaking. I defiantly makes you want to love on your babies just a little more that day! My thoughts are with your friends as the handle some seriously rough days ahead!!

  591. Oh, how hard, how horrific. Praying that they have a Net to catch them….

  592. I read this and wept, yesterday my family suffered a loss. My cousin passed away from a infection that attacked her heart and lungs. She was 25 and in her last year of University, she had been through so much, born with a serious heart condition and had open heart surgery at 3 days old, she was taken prematurely and my heart is breaking. I am curled up in a quilt my grandmother had made, it was almost 10 years since she has passed and our family hasn’t experienced a loss since her. It is amazing to me how my family is pulling together and, like this quilt I am wrapped in, it reminds me that we are all different, some big pieces, some little, but all colourful and together we make one big beautiful and warm being!
    My thoughts and prayers are with your friends family.

  593. I read this and wept, yesterday my family suffered a loss. My cousin passed away from a infection that attacked her heart and lungs. She was 25 and in her last year of University, she had been through so much, born with a serious heart condition and had open heart surgery at 3 days old, she was taken prematurely and my heart is breaking. I am curled up in a quilt my grandmother had made, it was almost 10 years since she has passed and our family hasn’t experienced a loss since her. It is amazing to me how my family is pulling together and, like this quilt I am wrapped in, it reminds me that we are all different, some big pieces, some little, but all colourful and together we make one big beautiful and warm being!
    My thoughts and prayers are with your friends family.

  594. So so sad. I’m so sorry for your friend’s loss. Your photos always show how beautiful life is, especially with our precious children. What a terrible loss… I can’t imagine their pain.

  595. How awful for your friends. I’m so sorry =( Just hearing those few details is enough to make me grab my kiddos just a little bit tighter.

  596. Ugh..I sure have been in a “funk” since reading this yesterday. So very sad and tragic. Sorry for your loss as well as your friend’s loss of their little boy. Hard to even fathom. So heartbreaking.

    Kelle – Thanks for your beautiful reminders to love more each and every day.

    Rosemary/Lightkeepersdaughter – Powerful message. Thanks for helping me walk in another shoes for a moment.

    Jill B (Overland Park,KS)

  597. So very sorry to hear of your friend’s devastating loss. My thoughts and prayers are with them.

  598. Yesterday I was shaken.
    My sweet friend fought a hard fight with lung cancer and lost it yesterday. She leaves behind two beautiful children.
    This is my third dear sweet friend that has died from cancer in the past 6 months. All young and all with young children as well as children getting ready to start their own journey with adulthoold.
    Thank you for your blog. It makes me stop and play instead of taping away working. So very sorry for your loss.
    Suzanne

  599. One more thing. My sweet boy was talking about his dear friend’s mother who passed away yesterday.

    “Mom, Savahanna’s mom should have changed her name to joy…cause, well, she’s just so joyful…
    Yep, her name should be joy.”

    What a beautiful way to be remembered in the heart of an 8 year old! huh. :-)

  600. so sorry to hear of that loss… it shook me up to read it.. .I have a chai tea cupcake recipe I want to share with you. I will email it to you.
    Love all the Nella and Lainey photos

  601. My heart breaks for your friends… I’ll be praying for them and will hug my little girl a little harder tonight.

  602. That is such absolutely terrible news :-( I am so sorry.

    I am convinced that you are the greatest mom ever, and I am inspired by you.

  603. I love all your pictures, always do, but the one I love the most is Nella in the shoebox. It brings a smile to my face and wonder “wherever did mom put the picture of my chubby little butt in a shoebox?” I’ll have to call her and find out.

  604. What a horrible tragedy for your friend and her family. It’s those moments that make us mothers want to shelter and over protect our own babies. The scary world of “what if” is there for each of us. I like how you say it made you so present for your family though. You can’t ask for more than that. I will hug my boys tighter tonight and think of your friend’s precious son.

    Your pictures this week are precious. I absolutely love Lainey’s “raisin” with arms and legs as I used to call them when I was teaching kindergarten. You’ve inspired me to frame and display my son’s water color paintings!!!

  605. This comment has been removed by the author.

  606. This comment has been removed by the author.

  607. Tears stream my face for a life gone too soon. I will be thinking of your friend and her son…sending hugs to you.

    Denise WI

  608. So tragic. No parent should ever have to bury their child, at any age. It’s not natural. My heart goes out to your Michigan friends :(

  609. I have been reading your blog for a while now, Kelle.

    This post was beautiful. You’ve become an even better writer than photographer…though nothing outshines your role as ‘Mom.’

    I hope your old friend finds her way to this post. It will bring her comfort to know how many moms place their own children in her baby’s situation and get a tiny inkling of her despair. We know her baby was the world…I don’t want to imagine, but for her, I do.

    P.S. Nella looks like a tiny little girl in that last pic…she won’t be a baby much longer!

  610. Kelle – you are a treasure. A woman who writes so beautifully it rocks us to our core. Thank you, thank you. For simply being you. Praying for your friend and her family.

    Beth

  611. So very sorry for your friend’s unimaginable loss. A parent should never have to lose their child. Our vulnerability, now that our hearts beat so fiercely outside our chest is cemented.Dear Lois from thedailylois.blogspot.com lost her dear little warrier to cancer today as well. The world shines a little less bright.

  612. So sorry to hear that news. It definitely makes you want to hold your family closer. Your daughters are absolutely precious! I love how your younger daughter has that little splash of brown in her brilliant blue eyes! My daughter has DS too and her eyes are blue and brown too. Prayers with you!

  613. I love this post, you speak the truth. I am so humbled by your words and mesmerized my your pictures. My heart hurts for you friend they are in my thoughts and prayers.

  614. prayers for comfort for your friend & family!

  615. Being shaken is horrid and gut-wrenching, but it’s what makes us better people. If we aren’t shaken once in a while, I think we lose perspective and become too self-focused. It proves we are genuine when the pain of others shakes our very existence. Praying for your Michigan friends! That pain is unimaginable.

  616. My heart truly aches right now as I’ve spent the last 4 days “snowed in” with my girls. I’ve tried to treasure every moment as we don’t get snow much here in Oklahoma. I’ve played daycare with babies, zoo keeper with Webkinz, multiple picnics, Wii, organized 10 year old jewelry boxes, made big breakfast every morning, and just snuggled and never let go until they did. I wish I could savor more everyday as it is true…we never know when today could be our last. Thanks for the reminder and I’m so sorry for your hurt.

  617. I can honestly not imagine. I have never had something hit that close to home. But, my girl is everything to me and my world would be shaken to it’s core if anything ever happened to her. I don’t know how people continue on but I pray for your friends, for healing, for peace and for joy in the midst of their hardship. So sorry for your loss and theirs.

  618. Going to kiss my sleeping children right now.

  619. I was shaken on Tuesday too…the same day as you. I heard of a mom friend who lost her 6 month old baby girl to SIDS. I held my own 6 month old baby girl a little tighter, a lot longer. I hugged my 3 year old big girl long and hard. I hurt for Randi. I couldn’t imagine.

  620. My condolences to the family in Michigan. Thank you for the reminder to hug a little tighter, hold a little longer, love a little more. And then go on and LIVE life.

    Esther D

  621. Sorry to hear of your friends loss. Extra hugs and kisses are a must in our home tonight. Thanks for sharing your heart with us!

  622. My heart aches for your dear friends who are coping with their tragic loss. I, too, will squeeze my boys a little tighter. I will keep their family in my thoughts.

  623. Many tears and prayers to your dear friends.

  624. Great reminder to tell my baby how much I love him and give him an extra hug and kiss tonight!

  625. How devastating and unbelievably tragic. My heart is with your friend and her family tonight.

  626. Oh Kelle. I so feel for you friend. And I so feel the rawness of your Monday. The what ifs are so hard to comprehend, but comes so close when things like this happen. Sometimes I find myself dwelling in them for a bit just to make each day count more. Having two precious babies I could never imagine loosing either. You, your friend and your families are in my prayers.

    Kristin

  627. Thanks for the reminder to live in TODAY, not for tomorrow.

  628. I am learning to love each day, each moment, a little more. Thank-you for your inspiring posts.

  629. Kelle, thank you for writing this post. You were able to put into words all the emotions I’ve felt the past few days. Last week a co-worker of mine from college lost his 2 year old daughter in one of those freak accidents that always seem so far removed from you until it actually happens to someone you know. You can’t help but grab your kids tighter and hug them a little more when you hear things like that.

  630. thanks for your words.

  631. I am sorry for you friend’s loss. It is my greatest fear to lose my little boy. When I hear of things like this happening, I just want to hold my son. Life is so unpredictable. I tell my son I love him about a hundred times a day. I never want to regret not telling him enough. I want him to know that he is my life.

  632. I’ve been asking myself these hard questions this week too…hoping for an answer aside from the usual ones. I’ve been trying to help find a home for three beautiful children this week. I’ve been wondering maybe if I hadn’t been loved so abundantly by my family, my husband, my friends, and been given such beautiful grace maybe I would be in the same position as their mother- heart-broken, beaten down by life, not sure she is capable of love anymore. So the only answer for me this week is to hold my babies, hug them and remind them once again how much they are loved. My son even said, “Can you please stop calling me love?”. And I replied, “Sure love.” Ugh- moms. :)
    p.s. I really love your song- I just want to mean something to you…was looking for the name of it and artist somewhere on here?

  633. shaken…had a few of those this past year. My older sister died this past summer at 31. She was a wife and mother of four. And now my family hug longer, talks more, doesn’t leave I love you unsaid. Doesn’t wait to apoligize. We love. One of my favorite verses and songs is Psalm 62 “Though life is but a fleeting breath,A sigh too brief to measure,
    My King has crushed the curse of death And I am His forever.”

  634. I’m so sorry about your friend and her loss. I can’t imagine what she is going through….I have three children and I literally can’t even bear to think about such a loss.
    You’re pictures are beautiful and moving. Beautiful children.

  635. So sorry to hear about your friends little boy. My prayers are with their family. It’s always so devastating when you loose someone, but it makes it worse when it’s an accident or a child.

    Love the photos of your little ones doing art, it’s my favorite passtime with my kids.

  636. Kelle, I feel for your friends, what a terrible loss. May they find peace in the very special memories they will forever have of their boy. My youngest (6 months) went in yesterday for surgery, my mind was flodded with the “what if’s”, once it was all over, I too, held all my babies tighter, kissed them longer and just basked in their sweetness, I stopped and really took them all in! Prayers for all as you grieve!

  637. Adding your friend’s family and yours to my prayers.

  638. These moments that shake us to our core, when we witness the complete undoing of someone else’s life as they know it….if nothing else serve to refocus us on our blessings. My prayers are with this mother. Thank you for reminding me to refocus my life this morning.

  639. OMG, that’s a crazy loss. Here I think that it’s great to see skiers of all ages wearing helmets, but should the bigger kids sledding still need to wear protective head gear when they are 8, 9, or 12? Wow, the activities that we took for granted as children. All those crazy adventures and somehow we are still here, safe and sound. My heart goes out for your friends.

    Thanks for sharing Kelle.

    -Jennifer from Annapolis

  640. So sorry for the family’s loss. That is just terrible and something I hope I never have to endure.

  641. So, so sorry about your friend. As you well know, we do have these events sporadically throughout our lives that snap us into this heightened sense of vulnerability and awareness of what really matters, what life is about.

    “Today is the greatest
    Day I’ve ever known
    Can’t live for tomorrow,
    Tomorrow’s much too long…”
    Smashing Pumpkins

  642. I just wanted to say thank you so much for your blog, and how openly honest you are! It’s like a breath of fresh air. You have inspired me to live more in the moment with my girls. As much as the daily to do’s weigh in on my mind, I have to remind myself that I will never get these days or moments back! thanks again and prayers are with your friends.

  643. Our family recently went through this…friends lost their beautiful, smiley 21 month old son in an accident (He fell down the stairs and suffered a brain injury)…spent all weekend with them, saying their good-byes. Yes, it makes you hold yours a little tighter..and draw a quick breath at times…and be thankful for the miracle that is life and love and for the God who gives them to us. Prayers for you and yours and your friend and her family.

  644. My heart breaks for your friend. I cannot imagine the pain of losing a child. My boys are my world completely. Your friend will be in my thoughts and more importantly, my prayers.

  645. It is so painfull when an innocent child’s life is lost. Our religion tells us he is in a better place – all who read your post will grieve for a young child we never even new. My childrenn will receive extra long hugs and even more kisses today. They are so vulnerable!!!

  646. I’m so sorry for your friend’s loss. I couldn’t imagine…I don’t know how I would go on….My prayers are with them as they walk through this painful and devestating process.

  647. Heartbreaking…I am so sorry for the loss of Aiden…Since you first posted this…I have been lighting a candle for Aiden and thinking of Aiden’s family and friends…Holding all of you up in prayers…

    Sending lots of love~

    “You will lose someone you can’t live without,and your heart will be badly broken, and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved. But this is also the good news. They live forever in your broken heart that doesn’t seal back up. And you come through. It’s like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly—that still hurts when the weather gets cold, but you learn to dance with the limp.” ~Anne Lamott

  648. So sorry for the tragic loss of your friends’ son. Definitely makes you hold your own little ones a bit tighter. I will keep them in our prayers.

  649. Love how creative you are!

  650. Thank you for this post. There can be so many what if moments in this life that cause us to focus on the fears of life instead of enjoying the small things (no pun intended). Thank you for the reminder to hug our kids a little more and be fully present in our lives. I am so sorry for your friend and her family. I pray that will feel comfort and peace only God can give. Losing a loved one seems to put all of life into perspective and force us to live for today, hold our loved ones a little closer, and stop sweating the small stuff!!

    I will enjoy reading your blog. Thanks for sharing your life and family in this blog. It is a blessing to read it.

  651. Word of the year: adapt (i googled a synonym for “go with the flow” – smirk). After moving across the country with a 3 month old for my husband’s job to a new climate, a new life, knowing no on one… I have forced myself to go with the flow, be less uptight, scared and nervous… adapt.

  652. my word of the year would be accomplished, i am back in school and almost finished, i stood up for myself more times than one and i completed the susan g koman 3day walk

  653. Ugh to Laura. I don’t get that at all from Kelle’s post. The bottom line is when you’re a compassionate heart, you hurt when other folks hurt. She has a right to share her pain derived from a tragedy that she experienced indirectly. I am sure that the family who experienced this loss would feel comforted in knowing they weren’t alone in the devastation of their loss. That concern for their son stretched through miles. That concern for their pain stretched through miles. I don’t understand why or what you are judging so harshly. C’mon. Play nice.

  654. oh. i’m so sorry for your loss.

    but thank you for writing about your storm in the midst of it. we all benefit from being reminded that life is fleeting… and precious.

  655. I have been so behind on your blog (along with writing my own lol) due to not having a laptop. I just jumped right in picking random post to read. You blogs always have so much life, inspiration, and honesty in them. It makes me happy and in complete awe of how you are so a wonderful mother. I love watching you and your family grow as the months go by. Thank you for sharing!

  656. I heard similar news this week of a friend who died suddenly of colon cancer. It really makes you think…and wonder…and worry for her family, for your family. I think that is why we are wired to feel compassion. To make us appreciate what we have. I know I spent the better part of the week lost in memories of the past and wondering about her family’s future. I did hug my kids just a little tighter…all 12 of them. It was a great weekend to be together. Just what I needed.
    Sandy
    http://www.twelvemakesadozen.blogspot.com

  657. Wow what a post! I missed this post and was reading Friday’s post and going back & looking at old ones I’d missed, so glad I found this one. So sorry for your friends, we have an almost 2 yr old little boy and I just can’t imagine. It is hard to not constantly live and obsess over all the what-ifs but you hit it right on the head with how that balance of unimportant or the little things along with these huge moments is so essential. Thank you for putting it in a way that many of wish we could :)

  658. This post made me cry every kind of tear there is. I am so sorry for your loss. Your girls are absolutely beautiful. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I am going to go hug & kiss my niece & nephew.

  659. I know this is an old post that I am just now reading but I have something important to say. My oldest son died 8 years ago at the age of 31. To this day I need to speak to my other children everyday, even though they are adults with their own lives. I just need to know that they are all right and I need to tell them I love them and hear I love you too mama in response. I hope that we all don’t need such a painful reason to tell our precious ones that we love them. Thanks for understanding.

  660. Of course, you make the death of a child about you. You’re disgusting. And I highly doubt your dropped your tea in Starbucks because that’s just fucking stupid.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>