Enjoying the Small Things

I did something this afternoon that I haven’t done in a long time–I napped. After a bit of a cold relapse and an exciting/exhausting day yesterday, I listened to my body as it begged me to be kind. Once Nella was down for her nap and Lainey was tended to by my friend, I stretched out on the couch and closed my eyes as the dogs took their cue to come join me. Warmed by the heat of the sun from the window behind me and calmed by the weight of the dogs at my feet, I stopped thinking about everything I could have been doing and instead rested quietly for a full hour. Miraculous accomplishment.

While the nap was followed by various tasks and to-do lists, I slid the complementing restful bookend on the day when I took a long hot shower tonight and made a pot of tea. Creating balance is always an interesting challenge, but finding it is sometimes easier than we think. Amid hectic days and schedules without vacancy, I can still make tea, take reviving showers, slip outside to let my bare feet kiss cold grass and sometimes–if I’m lucky–stretch out to quietly deprogram. Small things make big impact.

Speaking of…

Enjoying this week:

It was memorable, marked with such a range of emotions that, compiled, left me feeling overwhelmingly fulfilled by the end of the day. Seeing that baby feet book cover propped up on the sales table? It is a moment I won’t forget.


FYI: Upside down books are funny.


What a joy it was to hear from so many of you the past two days as well. Thank you, as always, for your words and stories (and all the photos on Instagram and Facebook of your books!). Celebrating “it” (the book, life, challenges, fill-in-the-blank) with you makes it all the sweeter.

My first official book signed and I froze because all that came to mind to write was “Stay Cool” and “L.Y.L.A.S.”

If you’re local, the Naples Book Signing will be next Friday, April 13 at Barnes and Noble, Waterside Shops, at 7 p.m. Hope to see you there!


Celebrating yesterday was a great excuse for gathering friends and babies and coffee cups.


Nella is settling into friendships more, and I smile watching her react with little buddies. Yesterday, she and her friend Emery initiated a game of peek-a-boo on their own. They were both belly-laughing, and I was delighted with the perfect natural display of inclusion. This is what it looks like. This is what it is. Pointing it out actually seems silly as if I should marvel at the fact that they breathe. Of course they breathe; it’s what they were born to do. What would really be silly is if, over time, we were taught how to stop breathing; how to gradually retrain our good, natural instincts. Something to think about, indeed.



The last couple times I’ve made plans with friends to “go out,” we unanimously decide to stay in instead. Last night we talked until the wee hours of the night over the glow of firepit flames behind our house as we listened to great playlists and contemplated life. I dig contemplating life.



Its blooms are contagious, and our front yard bush is having a fragrant party of white blossoms right now.



The Wave.
She’s done it forever and it’s never not funny. Every passing car. Every jogger, walker, biker. She stops whatever she’s doing, stretches out her arm with a little hand wiggle and says, clearly and cheerily, “Hi!”



Friend Visits.
My friend Rebecca has a knack for, among other things, showing up. She cozily slides into our home without making us feel any need to entertain, and her presence here this week has been a thrill for our family.




Independence and Vulnerability.

Loving the way my kids are modeling the marriage of bold independence and quiet vulnerability lately. We all have a bit of both, and I notice when each takes its turn coming to center stage. Lainey likes to make her own breakfast, choose her own clothes, visit a friend’s house all by herself and yet just a few minutes ago, she woke up crying, “Mommy, I need you.”


Nella contorts her body to get out of our arms and on to the floor, shakes her head “no” when we try to help her eat, proudly puts her own shoes on and yet she still reaches her hand to grasp her big sister’s or grips my shoulders a little tighter when she’s timid and unsure.


How we all have our moments–bold and independent, moving ahead; vulnerable and needy, pulling back a bit.


Both are important.



Bare feet.
We walked through the entire neighborhood tonight, all of us girls, with bare feet that slowly blackened as we made our way across the sidewalks. We carefully stepped over two beetles and avoided red ant mounds but ended up at the mountains where we stayed until the sun slipped past the roofs of neighboring houses.



And that, followed by a cup of tea and a hot shower, was the perfect end to our day.


Petite Lemon $50 gift card winner is:

Comment #13, Amanda: Kelle I have been counting down till April right along with you, Congratulations! It’s here!!! The bunny has arrived, the egg is about to crack, ok you get the picture… I’m excited to get my copy of Bloom! Have an awesome tomorrow, week and Easter all in one!

Amanda, please e-mail your contact information to kellehamptonblog@comcast.net with PETITE LEMON GIVEAWAY in the subject line, and you’ll be picking out cute t-shirts soon. Congrats!


Thank you to all those who have purchased Bloom and are sharing through Facebook and Twitter!

Happy day. What are you enjoying right now?



Leave a Comment
  1. Many congratulations on such a wonderful monumental day!

    I’m still waiting for my copy from Amazon and can hardly wait until Friday!

  2. my book has shipped and i cannot wait to get my hands on it!! πŸ˜€

  3. I am about half-way through the book and have a hard time putting it down. Love all the pictures and your raw honesty (and language for that matter!). Kudos to you, your family must be so proud… as you should be of yourself!

  4. Congratulations!! Can’t wait for my book to arrive, since i discovered i could order it in amazon directly from Mexico and it will arrive here… I thought I was going to wait till i went and visit my family in the US

  5. Such an exciting time for you. Now you’re the rock star!

  6. Congratulations on the book, and on coming full circle with it all! I’m so looking forward to getting my copy, all the way here to Darwin, Australia. A belated anniversary present from my husband, but one I have been desperate for :)

  7. Another honest, beautiful post. I too am anxiously awaiting my delivery from Amazon. Congratulations, Kelle. You have worked very hard for this day!

  8. Congratulations Kelle!
    Your new book is one of your biggest accomplishments and you still focus your post today on so many of your other blessings, like your beautiful and healthy family and friends.
    I wish you huge success with your book.
    GREAT things happen to wonderful people.

  9. Congrats on your book. Mine should be here tomorrow and I cannot WAIT to sit down this weekend and read it. I adore that picture of Nella waving. Stinkin cuttteee!

  10. Umm…I’m enjoying YOUR BOOK! (and the fact that I gave in, didn’t finish my homework last night and simply read until my eyes could no longer stay open) I’m enjoying that even though I know I have homework, I know it will be there when I get to it, even if it is due on Monday and I’m going to see my grandparents this weekend. Spending time with the people that mean most is far more important than any homework assignment. Loving your book! You’re awesome!!

    Love, Mere
    Twitter: @mere728

  11. Congratulations Kelle! I’m anxiously awaiting my copy of Bloom, all the way here in Brisbane, Australia.

  12. It’s been a while since i’ve read a good old enjoying post! The perfect ending to my happy day! And I just found out that my book is coming by the slowest mail known to man! It might as well be delivered by horse!

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  14. I am enjoying… page 89… reading through tears … soaking up every word of your sister’s “I have a dream” speech. Dude. Your sister is right on. You are so amazingly lucky to have had someone close to you to put it all out there right from the start. To take you by the hand & lead you out of pain into the beginnings of joy. It sounds silly but I keep thinking of the game “Chutes & Ladders” and how her words were a ladder leading you way ahead of the game. We took a slower route, but got there just the same.
    Back to reading… loving it so very much!
    p.s. Please be sure to tell your sister how much she rocks!!!

  15. So very happy for you and your family!!! What a fantastic accomplishment, not just the book but the inspiring, beautiful message you’ve put out there for the world to see.

    Cheers to you! Let’s all make Bloom a New York Times Bestseller! Good people deserve to have good things happen to them :)

  16. Hooray! Well done Kelle to get to this point.

    I’m looking forward to my copy – says it was posted yesterday – and that I have over a month to wait! Hopefully it surprises me before then!

  17. So excited!! I ordered Bloom today and just got an email that it shipped! Cannot wait! Congrats and many blessings!

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  19. Right now I’m enjoying the email I received saying your book will be here Monday! I’m also enjoying the weather warming up, thinking of our first Easter with our four month old little girl and meeting new friends at the mommy-baby group we went to today!

    So happy for you! Thank you for being such an inspiration!

  20. I am over the moon happy for you. What an amazing thing to be able to cross off your bucket list. Girl, you wrote a freakin’ book! It’s on mine…..oh someday. Someday I hope I can cross it off too. I’ve been so jealous seeing everyones updates about receiving their books. I’ve been tracking my ups package for 2 days and I can’t wait until it lands on my doorstop so I can rip it open and have some much needed quiet time. You are such an amazing woman. I can only hope that this book will blow up to unimaginable proportions, and you will be forced to travel for book signings. That would be awesome. If that is ever the case, make Austin your first stop. πŸ˜‰
    Hugs to you and your fam. Relish in this moment…it’s a biggie.

  21. Yay!!! It’s so exciting looking at your photos and reading about your emotions through this whole, glorious process of Bloom. I even started tearing up at the beginning of this post and that made me realise I hadn’t taken my Efoxor for the day. I always get teary later in the day if I miss it in the morning.
    So, I’m still waiting for my copy. I’m hoping it will be in the post box when I get back from the Easter weekend. I can’t wait to instagram my copy.
    Happy Easter to the Hamptons!

    Kylie in Melbourne, Australia

  22. You are such a gem.

    And I am so close to finishing Bloom and actually feeling sad that I have read it so quickly! Very excited to share with my “net” of friends though…

    Bloom, you, your perspective and choices…such a joy and an inspiration for me to connect to.

    Thank you a million times over.

  23. I’m half way through your book and your book has brought tears, love, and inspiration. And as a mama of two girls, your book just makes me want to hold them close and let them know that nothing could ever make me love them less or think they are less perfect. Thanks for sharing your story, it’s been a true blessing.

  24. Lovely spring moments. Laughing at the peek a boo.
    So envious of your gardenia. For all their showiness coloured flowers don’t have a patch on white. So pure, so stunning. Perfect.

    What am I enjoying?
    15 minutes and I have 5 days of holiday bliss.
    The last days of summer here.
    We are building our vegetable garden tomorrow.
    Making new online friends through blogs and IG (one of your IG followers offered to send me a copy of Bloom when they read that I had to wait 3-4 weeks for it to arrive in Australia!)
    My husband. We are so much closer than before, and I love him so dearly. He’s my soul twin.

  25. I laughed out loud when I saw the picture of Nella and her “wave.” What a sweetheart πŸ˜‰ As for the book…I am so excited that it’s out for everyone to read! I, of course, feel so honored and lucky that I was able to read it before (after winning one of your giveaways!) Seriously, I smile every time I see it. Such a goooood book! Congrats to you :)

  26. Ah! Read the book from beginning to end yesterday… is that crazy? Loved it. Thank you for being you, that’s all.

    Hugs to you– and take more naps!!

  27. Congrats on the book. I am sure it must have been a moment packed with so many different emotions.

    Can’t wait to get my copy … the only downside of preordering it. At least I’ll have something good to read for the weekend.

  28. What an exciting week for you, your family and your friends! I am so excited about the book and can’t wait until my copy arrives. Beautiful pictures as always! The girls are just getting so big :)

  29. I saw your header and was like, Oh that’s so cool and then realized, it’s the picture on the book!!! Right now, right this second, what really gives me so much enjoyment is your blog.

    And hugs from my own little girl.

  30. So happy for you! I can’t wait to read my copy as soon as I finish this class ( I did sneak and look at some pictures!) You should totally come to Michigan to do a book signing! Would love to finally meet you! I have been spreading the word about the book!

  31. Kelle,
    My friend has a mental disability and she has enjoyed many real and enduring friendships including our friendship of over 20 years now (and we’re both only 30).

    The fickle people don’t tend to stick around but is that really a problem? Nella will have her people and they will be ones worth having.

    There’ll be hurt feelings and sleepovers and best friends and giggles and spats… for Nella and for Lainey. Deep down, every human is a people-person, we’re programmed that way. For all the ‘differences’ we see (especially when we’re young and superficial) eventually what wins over is our ability to see our ‘sames’ and our desire to connect.

    My friend’s life is very different to mine. She’s still stuck on teenage magazines and soap operas and childish fascination with boyfriends and dates and first kisses. I have a partner and two children. But we gain so much from each others company as we listen to music and sip tea and bake cupcakes. My 5yr old adores my friend and my friend adores curling up on the couch and reading to my daughter.

    Your girls will be just fine, Kelle, you’ve made sure of that- by raising them and by changing the world they live in.

  32. I just finished reading Bloom and I loved it! Of course, I knew that I would since I enjoy your blog so. I’m going to pass it along to MY (grown) daughter to read…

  33. It’s midnight, and I just enjoyed reading the first half of your book! Crying, laughing, nodding, and becoming more and more inspired with each page I tell myself will be the last for tonight :-) I’m only forcing myself to put it down so I won’t get mad at myself for going through it so quickly…

  34. this was beautiful in so many ways. so happy for you, HUGE congrats!

  35. Lovely post and photos. Could almost smell the gardenias. So glad you had a nap. My goodness I bet you needed it. Still waiting for my book in the UK. Can’t wait. Tried to buy it as an ebook but couldn’t. One of your IG friends bought it on iBooks but I couldn’t even do that. I wonder why. Longing to dive in. Will just enjoy catching up with you here and on IG as thepitts!

    At the moment I am enjoying the Easter holidays and a break from the school run and making packed lunches. I was down to only 2 children yesterday instead of the usual six. Although I missed the others, I knew they were having fun, 2 with my mum and another 2 with my cousin. I enjoyed the relative peace, fewer tiffs and being able to focus on mr number 4. We went to a local farm and enjoyed the spring sunshine andbnewborn lambs. We came home and made chocolate cornflakes nests. X to you

  36. Your blog never fails to warm my heart – thank you – thank you – thank you – I am off to buy your book xxx

  37. Beautiful. Your photos are always full of emotion, but these ones feel especially so. xoxo

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  40. So many kind detailed congratulations sent to you! I almost never read comments, but lately I’m reading more and more of them, and it is SO refreshing and inspiring to see ‘the good side’ of people. I don’t know whether to laugh or pity the jealous, negative commenters. I guess I could show compassion…but afraid they’d bite at that too. LOVE your blog and cannot wait to read your book (hopefully on its way). This was such a great post too!
    Enjoying the kindness in my kids when they don’t know I’m listening to them play, adoring my husband’s giving heart, and enjoying the company of one of my dearest friends today.
    PS – perfect life? Quite the contrary…I’ve been in a pit lately and choose to embrace the positive when I come here…hoping to transform back into a lover of life. Fake? Not exactly…that would be so if I decided that it ‘looked better’ to leave the PS off of here.
    PSS – take all the rest you need, Kelle. The world is a better place with you in it!
    Love ya in Tejas,

  41. LOVE all the pictures with you and your book! So very cool! And your girls are just TOO cute! Right now, at 3:53am, I’m enjoying… your book! I woke up for a split second, but it was long enough to remember where I left off reading last night, so then I was soo excited at reading more to even try to go back to sleep… :) Ps. I can’t get over how beautiful each page of your book is! I love how many pictures are scattered throughout the book, and your author photo on the back page is TO DIE FOR… you are GLOWING and beautiful in it! :) Also, enjoying how much my 2 year old and my 6 month old look alike. When they were both soaking wet in the bath tub tonight… they looked like they could be mistaken for twins separated by 20 months. :)

  42. I’m halfway through Bloom (and probably should get some sleep so I can get up in four hours and take my son to school). Kelle, thank you. I’ve already gotten out of bed (where my two year old is sleeping between my husband and I) twice to go hug and kiss my older boy. He’s too far away. Tonight I’m thankful for your book, my family, and the kindle app on my iPad.

  43. Kelle, I am so so happy for you. To think that a few years ago you set out for Florida not knowing where it would take you and look at you now. Married, children and now an author. What an amazing achievement! Blogs are cool, but it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. A lot of people still like reading a good old-fashioned book. I’m overjoyed that your exposure to others beyond the blogging world is growing. We only hope Bloom will be the first of many books to come. You, Brett and the kids so deserve this success. Don’t stop here, the sky’s the limit! Relishing in the good fortune and much deserved success of a wonderful woman.

  44. As tears fill my eyes when I read your question “what are you enjoying right now?” – I’d say I really enjoy being asked that. Apparently!

    Right now I enjoy, apart from you and your magic here, the fact that four days off, enjoying spring with my husband and little son awaits me.
    I will paint eggs, I will laugh, I will have coffee, I will smile when my boy finds his Easter egg and I will so enjoy a bath in our semi-renovated bathroom!!
    A foam bath, sweet joy!

    Nowadays I look so much forward to finding your book in my swedish mailbox at home, any day, and I really really can’t wait to read it. To enjoy it.

    I wish you a glorious Easter and I just want to say: “way to go, girl” on accomplishing that book. I love that you did!!!

  45. Never have I been so happy to have a Kindle. I pre-ordered Bloom and it magically appeared on my home screen when I fired it up yesterday morning (because we live.. IN THE FUTURE!)

    And I read the whole book in two sittings! A bit before work, and the rest when I got home. (Luckily my IT geek-guy was the home office, knee deep in..well.. something computer-ish.)

    THAT BOOK! Oh my gosh. I laughed! I sobbed! (those big heaving sobs that actually made him come out and ask if I was okay..heh)Then I laughed more. I’ve rarely enjoyed a book SO much. I can’t wait to read it again. and again.

    Thank you for sharing your family’s story. xoxoxox

  46. I am excitedly awaiting the arrival of my BLOOM from Amazon to here in Australia….I am so friggen excited Kelle. Congratualtions on it’s launch…and your amazing talent as a writer! Something I found pretty cool the other day…. I was talking books with a friend, she asked me who my favourite Authors were. I started listing a few…and then without even needing forced prompt, your name came out of my mouth :) I then explained that I read your blog & haven’t read your book yet, but your writing is inspiring & lyrical & poetic & beautiful…therefore a favourite author of mine :)

    What am I enjoying right now? Dressing my baby boy in leg warmers & hats in these cooler Autumn mornings. Late night writing with hot coffee & candles burning while the rest of my house sleeps. Easter has begun. And the anxiety that is coming with waiting for BLOOM to arrive :)

    Happy days Kelle. Life is GOOD.
    P.S. Love that photo of Rebecca & Lainey walking barefoot across the road.


  47. Um, Nella on the shelf is my favorite photo ever.

    Also, that gardenia reminded me of growing up – we had gardenias in our back yard.

    Happy “Bloom” Week!

  48. Finished the book last night, it was an incredible read. And really, I had expected no less.

    What I couldn’t get out of my head, Kelle, was that while yes, you and Brett are the perfect parents for Nella, Lainey is the PERFECT big sister. Through all your agonizing about their relationship, I just kept thinking ‘doesn’t she see, these two little girls were so meant for each other!’ I know you see that now.

    Lainey’s nurturing, mothering side is so alive and awake at such a young age, and that really doesn’t happen with every little girl. She and Nella are just so lucky to have each other.

    Thank you for sharing so deeply with us.

    One more little question…. When is the next book coming? :)

  49. So pretty pictures!!!!

    much Happiness, Tranquility, Peace and LOVE!!!! ***********


  50. I need your book! Good thing i know where to find it :) I think I will pick it as my book club book selection! Love your blog and your pictures and everything. Thanks for sharing your life with us. Peace.

  51. I’ve been following your life since somewhere between Nella’s birth and my little one’s birth (2 years ago TODAY!) I, too, was homeschooled. I, too, have lost babies much too early. I, too, am devouring every moment of this crazy, beautiful, painful, amazing, precious, most blessed life! Bloom is sitting here beside me, ready to share some quite moments in my otherwise very full life! Oh and I recently wrote a little blog post about the balance between needing comfort and being “brave” as I watched my little one!

  52. Right now, even though it’s not even 6:30am, I am enjoying 10 minutes with my 20 month old twins. Getting in some cuddles before their big sisters get up & the craziness of the school morninng begins!

    Congrats on your amazing book. What’s next? πŸ˜€

  53. Almost done with the book! Love it! So amazing Kelle!!!

  54. Congratulations to you!

  55. Kelle – There’s a sea of us out here beaming with pride for you. There’s a vast sisterhood cheering you on. Wow. What an accomplishment!

    I’m still (im)patiently waiting for my book from Amazon, but thankfully creative projects are wrapping up and I will take the time to just sit and read.

    I’m loving Spring – the green meadows of grass, the blooms on every tree, the sweet scent of my holly trees. Oh, I didn’t realize Holly’s give back more than berries until last night! I am loving the strength God is giving me to finish sewing an Easter dress and to make artwork for Alex in the few free hours I have post family/post workday.



  56. I was up for 2 hours last night going through your blog. My cousin has downs syndrome and she is one of the smartest people I know. I get your book today and can’t wait to start reading it!! So inspiring!!

  57. I am trying to wake up because I stayed up too late reading your book. And, I do not regret that decision for a second, even amidst my very puffy eyes this morning. The tears just flowed so naturally, as I was reminded of some of my very own moments with my sweet Ethan, moments that could have been taken straight from some of the pages of your so beautiful book. Great, great job, Kelle! I am not quite finished with the book yet, but I am loving every single page so far.

  58. Oh Please please tell me you did write Stay Cool and L.Y.L.A.S. That’s just cool beans to me! While I don’t really “know” you, that seems like such a “you” thing to do.

  59. Congrats on the book! Just bought it & cannot wait to start it. A tad bummed though, wont lie…I fly in to Naples next week on the 13th, however I do not get in until 11pm, so I see now that you are having a book signing & I will miss it :(

  60. I’m going to be enjoying your book by this evening! BEST birthday present ever!!! But first, a trip to the aquarium with my boy’s and a birthday picnic!

  61. I am enjoying your book, Easter pinterest crafting, the gorgeous weather, and a day off from the confines of my hospital desk today!

  62. Your book is stunning and I hope you’re enjoying this week to the fullest. Drink it all in. Many congrats to you.

  63. I bought your book on release date then spent whole day/night reading it! It was a well written book with beautiful pictures; your story made me cry all over again, and it inspired me so much to look for good in my life as well. Loved your book!

    I’m telling all people I know to pick up a copy of your book and read it!

    I wish I have your signature–that would be so cool–so come on over to Milwaukee, WI for a signing someday, okay?


  64. I enjoyed reading a book last night too—with chasing, feeding, dressing, putting on shoes, entertaining and comforting two little girls all day long….it was heavenly to just sit and read last night. It makes for a peaceful night sleep, too. Until the baby wants a bottle at 4am.

  65. Congrats! I am enjoying having my hubby home all week on his Spring Break. Looking forward to an Easter egg hunt this weekend!

  66. I am so excited for you and your book! Love your friend that always comes to visit. So sweet! Love the new baby : )

  67. In the midst of schoolwork and research for final papers, I’m enjoying the “me” time I give myself to unwind– which currently is occupied by reading Bloom! Congratulations, Kelle! Your book is here, and it’s beautiful. I read the first chapter last night, and already wiped away a few tears.

  68. After a long day of working and getting my son ready for bed, then packing for our trip “home” to WV for the Easter holiday, I was wiped. I crawled into bed, turned on my Kindle Fire, and to my delight, there is was, Bloom. So beautiful, it brought tears to my eyes just looking at the first pages, the dedication to Lainey. Tiredness went away as I couldn’t stop reading. Although not finished, it’s beautiful thus far! Congratulations. You’re heart must be so full of joy.

  69. It’s been absolutely incredible to re-visit the story of Nella’s birth after reading it so long ago. Your writing is SIMPLY stunning Kelle. Every time I open one of your blog entries, or in this case Bloom, it sparks a fire in me-reminding me of my passion to write. But it sparks so much more too. It reminds me to live, love and laugh more deeply. We can never thank Nella enough for coming into this world. And you-for so beautifully putting that wonderful moment to words. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  70. Kelle, I’ve been a long time reader but this is my first comment. I am a mom of 2 boys who sport the beloved extra chromosome. Yesterday morning I went to Target and purchased Bloom. I started reading it in the car while I waited for my oldest to come out from pre-school, I picked it up again while I fed the boys lunch and again after I put them down for their much needed naps. I could not put it down and by 9pm last night I had read it cover to cover. I cried, I laughed and I related to your words which were so beautifully written. Thank you for your honesty and humor. By the way, I live in Rockford, IL and so wish you would have moved here!!!

  71. My three year old son looked over my shoulder as I was reading your blog this morning. He said, “Who is that?” I told him it was a little girl named Nella. He said, “She my best fwend.” Gotta love it.
    Many congrats on your book. I got teary eyed looking at the pictures of you in the bookstore. I mean, WOW. What an accomplishment. Good for you!

  72. I was so excited when your book arrived. I had to look at all the pictures right away. Saving the reading til the week-end.
    Love seeing Nella in front of all the books. And Miss Lainey is growing so fast. She looks so tall al of a sudden.

  73. I’m enjoying an early morning of reading your book. I can’t seem to put it down but that’s not a problem in my opinion! Thank you, thank you. I’m less then a 1/4 of the way through the book but I keep looking at the remainder of pages left because I don’t want it to end. Ever. And then I am reminded by your words that this is your beautiful story, and I have my own just waiting to be started.

  74. enjoying that feeling you get when you love your new book so much that you just can’t put it down – but you try to read slow so it doesn’t go too fast. congratulations.

  75. I am a new reader (in the last few weeks), and loved every word of this post. It made my morning coffee so enjoyable. Thank you!

  76. PLEASE say you are coming to Minnesota for a book signing. I want L.Y.L.A.S. in my book :)

  77. I received my book today. My Mom wants me to hurry and read it so that she can. I may “let” her read it first. She is 86 years young and “doesn’t do computers”, so it would give her the opportunity to meet you and your family.
    Best Wishes,

  78. i am LOVING The book! love the post! love that nella and lainey need you still yet they are blooming into independent little ladies.
    soak it in, kelle! and thank you for being you and teaching us all how to enjoy the small things.

  79. I love this: “They were both belly-laughing, and I was delighted with the perfect natural display of inclusion. This is what it looks like. This is what it is. Pointing it out actually seems silly as if I should marvel at the fact that they breathe. Of course they breathe; it’s what they were born to do. What would really be silly is if, over time, we were taught how to stop breathing; how to gradually retrain our good, natural instincts.” Just beautiful and perfect! :)))

    I am so happy for you, my Friend! Congratulations! I am celebrating with you! LOVE your memoir. It is a beautiful story: your story. I love your voice, your honesty and your message. Reading it felt like having a conversation with you. Your writing was engaging. There are chapters that are very emotional and healing. You are funny too. I found myself crying and laughing so many times. Love a thought provoking book.

    Your journey has moved me deeply. I know, I am reading a good book when I get chills, can feel the author’s words and experience many emotions at the same time. This book will always have a special place in my heart for many reasons. Reading it was an amazing experience. Bloom: an inspiring and powerful story about unconditional love, beauty, grace, life, pain, joy, wisdom, motherhood, family, friendship, celebration, courage, strength and perspective! Cannot wait to buy some hardcovers and share them with others.

    Thank you so much for writing this wonderful book, for doing this for Lainey, Nella, our J, your loved ones, you and the human family!

    xOx…Much Love~

    This is one of my favorites quotes from Bloom:

    “…I have found that joy and good are everywhere–in many people from all walks of life and beliefs systems, and that while I believe in God and feel his presence in the events in my life, I feel him as love, rather than fear or judgement. I am certain that forgiveness and reconciliation beget good and can only draw one closer to the mystery and wonder that is God.” ~Kelle Hampton

  80. I sooo LOVED your book! I think Michigan is calling you home.. we need some ink on our covers :) There is no denying you and your beautiful family inspire many, thank you for that

  81. Enjoying:
    Bloom, for sure…its one of the most heartfelt stories I’ve read in a long time
    My sweet 3 month old…she’s growing so fast, I try to soak in every possible minute
    Easter…LOVE this time of year, a time of fresh starts, dressing in spring clothes, shedding the winter blues!

  82. I am enjoying having a newly turned 6 year old. She turned 6 on Monday and is still asking for candles in her PB&H sandwiches and asks me to sing. I love it. Birthdays are fun. Especially celebrating your own child’s. I’ve been blissfully happy lately.

  83. Just finished your book! It took me all of a day and a half! Once I started, I didn’t want to put it down. I started reading your blog about a year ago…and have loved all your inspiration words and beautiful photos ever since. Congratulations on all your accomplishments!

  84. “How we all have our moments–bold and independent, moving ahead; vulnerable and needy, pulling back a bit.” – Love this! I have a beautiful baby boy who is about to turn 2, so we have that day-to-day struggle happening. Watching him learn and master new things everyday is my greatest blessing and the push and pull of it all is fascinating. Just checked my Amazon account and my copy of “Bloom” is arriving today! You have inspired me so greatly, Kelle. I can only hope that my own writing and sharing my story of motherhood can be as motivating and inspiring as yours. All the best to you and your lovely family <3

  85. Thanks, Kelle, for your blog and words of inspiration always. I dedicated my blog to you today: http://www.apeyleedesigns.blogspot.com/2012/04/certain-blogs.html

  86. Stopped by to read some more Bloom comments & just have to say how much it made me smile that KC’s quote today is from YOUR book.
    Very cool.

  87. I am enjoying your success, your deeply inspirational blog, your beautiful, soul touching photos of your family and friends. It’s a wonderful moment. Thank you.

  88. Just loved Bloom! Read it in a night!

    You look great during the bookstore visit… I love that dress!

  89. Got my copy (errr…I mean the copy I bought for my sister) in the mail on Monday!! Big congrats and I can’t wait to read it. I have til my sister’s birthday in May and if I can just crank through this last Hunger Games book, Bloom is next on the list. Stupid Hunger Games.

  90. I have to shamefully admit that I procrastinated. I told my husband “I’m going to pre order Kelle’s book because I want her signature!” (and yes, we’re on a first name basis) but true to form I procrastinated…and missed the deadline. Regardless I can’t wait to go out and grab my copy of Bloom and dive in! Many Many Congratulations to you. L.Y.L.A.S.

  91. I went to Amazon.com today to look something up and guess what is on the “Amazon Editors’ Picks: The Best Books of the Month”??? BLOOM! Congratulations!!!

  92. Yesterday I enjoyed the quiet. I enjoyed your book while holding my own special girl. I hugged her a little closer, smelled her a little deeper. I took a slow walk with my bigger kids and really listening to their laughter. I heard a new song and fell in love with it. I am enjoying moments of joy in the midst of sadness.

    I posted on instagram too but just wanted to say again, thanks for your book. Can’t wait to share my own story someday but for now you put into words so many of my own thoughts and emotions in this journey…
    <3 Ramee

  93. Lainey looks so big in some of those pictures! I am enjoying being happy right now, just happy with my life. That is all :)

  94. And yes I just had to google L.Y.L.A.S because I am so not cool like that…..

  95. Hi, Kelle! First time commenting, long time reader. My dear friend, Amy, over at flipflopfollies.com, dropped passed your book to me during the night. She left it neatly packed at my door ater zooming through it in under a day. I am looking forward to having my heart bloom with the love I know you have poured into your words. Congratulations to you and your family. A great accomplishment topped only by the endless love you give to your girls each and every day. thank you for sharing your life moments with us. Best, Lisa Raigosa (Valencia, Ca)

  96. A huge congratulations are in order! That is so incredible, and such a monumental day! Gorgeous pictures, and I am glad you guys had such a wonderful time!

  97. My facebook status right now – *Today’s reminder: “How we all have our moments–bold and independent, moving ahead; vulnerable and needy, pulling back a bit. Both are important.” Kelle Hampton*

    I needed to have this affirmed this morning. Thank you. :o)

  98. I am loving every second of Bloom. I find myself crying, smiling & laughing along with your amazing story.

  99. Congrats again! I am enjoying time with my kids and rare sunny days. My son does that shaking his head no because he wants to do it and he shakes his head yes when he wants something or he wants us to say yes he can have something – it is pretty funny. Happy Thursday!

  100. Last night I gathered my two girls up and went to B&N to find your book. After searching here and there I finally found it. One left. Since I don’t have the extra money to buy it and bring it home, I led my girls to the kids section and while they picked a pile of books to read, I started reading your Bloom. Very open and honest. I got through most of it and when I felt the saleslady’s eyes boring into me to buy the book or leave, I left it for maybe another trip to the bookstore. Congratulations on another big step in your life.

    Right now I’m enjoying my girls practicing guitar and piano and singing and dancing to the Nutcracker. Happy Day to you and your family.

  101. Congrats, Kelle! I can’t wait to read it! Your girls will be SO proud of you someday when they read this book.

  102. Kelle – Bloom is amazing! It’s so much more than I expected! I remember reading your blog before Nella was born and being so excited for Nella to arrive! I have an older brother with Down syndrome, so when I read her birth story, I was excited but also wept with you.

    I love your photos… as usual :) I’m enjoying watching Zayn dance to Imogen Heap. Oh, naps are the best aren’t they?! xx

  103. “L.Y.L.A.S.”…I admit, I snorted a little laughing at that blast from the past.

    Congratulations on your big day yesterday!

  104. Book Tour, Please!!! So I can hug your neck! Or shake your hand. Or fist bump, whatever man :) So glad you’re enjoying this special week. Stay Cool.

  105. I can’t wait to get my book! I was hoping it would arrive before Easter weekend but it never :(

  106. So exciting, the pictures in the bookstore made me tear up! I can’t even imagine how amazing that must have been. Congratulations! I can’t wait for my copy to arrive

  107. I thought your learned your lesson about walking barefoot? πŸ˜‰ Now beetles and fire ants, ew! JK! And Rebecca has some amazing hair, looks like it should be “pinned” on Pinterest!

    And such a huge congrats again about Bloom! I can’t wait to read it. You must feel so accomplished! Are those friends of yours or just random women that were over the moon to see Kelle Hampton in Barnes and Noble and took a picture with you?

  108. I am so excited to be the lucky #13 comment winner… when I posted my comment yesterday you had none and somehow I ended up being 13, I’ll take it! :) Thank you Thank you Thank you. And PS. you can sign my copy of Bloom with LYLAS any day!!!

  109. Kelle, congratulations! I am so happy for you! Many best wishes coming your way!

  110. This is one of my favorite posts of yours. I LOVE the photo of you signing your book (and the consequent caption, especially because my sisters and I say “LYLAS” all the time). To me, this photo seems to be the ultimate representation of the independence + vulnerability you speak about later in the post. I think you look just like Lainey in one of her reserved moments, while at the same time you’re SIGNING a BOOK that YOU wrote. How cool and crazy powerful is that?! Rock on, sister.

    You are a huge inspiration to me, I can’t wait to pick up a copy of Bloom this weekend! Congratulations!

  111. Hi Kelle!

    Saw Bloom at Target today and was so excited for you! I wanted to thumb thru it but resisted since I hadn’t gotten my copy yet, until I got home and it was waiting in the mailbox for me! Yahoo! Can’t wait to start it. Love that you took the time to post last night with so much going on for you. I really enjoy reading your posts and can relate to so much that you say, especially today. had to LOL about the LYLAS, so cute! you clearly aren’t used to being a star! :) And they way Nella waves to cars, my daughter Ava did the same thing not long ago. I was dealing with a little independance/dependance this past 5 days when my husband was away with my stepsons…it was just me and my 2.5 year old daughter, which was nice and I got to see girlfriends and do what I wanted…but I really missed my husband :) and that’s coming from a girl who waiting until her late 30’s to get married!!
    I’ve never been a reader of blogs, nor do I blog myself, but have really connected with yours and just wanted to say thank you! Have a wonderful Easter!
    Vickie in Virginia

  112. Kelle, I want to thank you for writing such an amazing book. I finished it in a day and have told everyone I can to read it! As a special educator, and a new mama, this book (and your blog) have touched my heart. Thank you for putting yourself out there, you will help and inspire so many. I hope that I raise my daughter to not see differences in people, but to accept and love everyone.

  113. Hi I am so excited my book came in today!!! Congrats seeing you story in on the shelves!!!

  114. I’m still waiting for my book but have enjoyed watching your journey to its arrival. I wish I could join you at the book signing! I hope you have a blast and continue to bless our community with your honesty. I hope new parents will grasp more quickly the knowledge and perspective that you share and embrace their precious baby as the gift they are.

    Happy Easter!

  115. Nella and her friend playing peek-a-boo….that one really got me….so very precious and silly and cute and normal! Hurray for moments like this that make me realize just how extraordinary normal is. I hope I can explain myself here. I mean, of course I celebrated my boys when they met the usual/expected milestones and I thought they were adorable and funny when they showed personality, but I feel like with Nora, my eyes have REALLY been opened to just how AMAZING every bit of development truly is…..for every.single.child.— whether they have DS or not. I didn’t intentionally take my boys for granted, but I truly didn’t know the depth of their accomplishments until I had Nora. Babies, children, humans in general….are amazing and capable and normal. Ugh, I feel frustrated—like I’m not explaining my thoughts accurately, but I will take a chance and say that I bet I know what you were feeling when you saw her interact like that. And I bet you didn’t take a bit of that moment for granted. Maybe even a little teary-eyed?

    I CAN NOT wait to get my book….we went through a few major mishaps before it was actually ordered! Whew! And was it coincidence that your book came out in the Spring? I bet not…..perfect timing, and dual meaning, yes?

    Much love to you during this “blooming” April,

  116. I am enjoying reading your post (as I always do) in my pajamas while the kiddos play next to me. I’m hoping to enjoy reading your book soon, I can’t remember the last time I took the time to read a real book and I really miss reading. Congratulations, you look truly happy in those pictures.

  117. All my congratulations to you Kelle. Your dream came true yesterday!it was unforgettable.i have to wait for the end of next week, because i live in France, it will be a long long time, but i’m sure that it’s for a very good book!!Thanks

  118. congrats on the great book! cant wait for my ladies book club :)

  119. Wow!! I received my book yesterday and immediately started reading…finishing it today…wow!

    You seem to put into words some of my very own thoughts and I appreciate the way you are able to string it together so beautifully.

    Thank you for your vulnerability, honesty and courageousness, but most of all for you sharing your family with all of us. It truly opens your eyes to the beauty of what can be, if you let it…thanks for letting me be a part of your journey!

  120. Congratulations on your book being published!! Mine is downloading to my Kindle now! I can’t wait to read it! :)

  121. I just got my copy! So excited to get home and crack it open!

  122. I can’t imagine that feeling you felt when you saw it there.

    I have always said that was my dream. To walk into Barnes & Noble and buy my own book.

    I finished Bloom last night (my husband was wondering who died because I was crying so hard). It’s safe to say you’ve lit a fire under me. I wrote about you and the book a little on my blog today. You have inspired me to find my “new pair of glasses” with which to see the world.

    I am in such a sorry, sad and depressed state and have been like this for so long I don’t know anything else. I’m so tired of feeling like this.

    Today, I opened up the file on the computer that says “novel” and started working again. I’m nearly finished but I quit in December and haven’t gone back. It really is my dream and it feels so far away.

    But after reading yours, the way you put your beautiful story together, I know I have to finish.

    Congratulations again, Kelle. I secretly wish I weren’t finished with your book yet. Maybe I’ll read it again!

  123. Beautiful pics–perfect capturing of your achievement–and beautiful reminders! Thank you! :)

  124. Received my copy of Bloom. It is beautiful. Congratulations! I am enjoying our beautiful Spring weather and playing in the back yard with my children. Happy Easter!

  125. It is such a treat to read your blog. I like to save it for when I have a quiet minute to myself, to really savour your beautiful photos and beautiful writing.

  126. My copy of Bloom came in around 3pm yesterday. I instagramed (can I verb that?) you a picture (amiejanette on insta), and sat down to read it at 8pm. By midnight I was done, and a mess. What a beautifully written memoir for your girls! The gorgeous pictures took my breath away, and the eloquent words kept me awake last night. Bravo on a job well done, and don’t forget us little people when you’re a big bad (or bigGER and badDER)author!

  127. Something to think about indeed. Children have SO much to teach us, yet we often are focused on what we can teach them. Love this reminder.

  128. My book has shipped and I can’t wait for it to arrive! Congrats!

  129. So excited to get my copy of Bloom at Barnes and Noble today. I didn’t pre-order and then couldn’t wait for Amazon. Can’t wait to sneak it into my next couple days!

  130. Yay Kelle!! I am thrilled about you book…you go girl! I started reading your blog about a year ago but have never commented before. You are an inspiration. I LOVE reading what you write. You have made me cry so many times; your writing is so touching! I haven’t bought your book yet, but I will be. I am a special education teacher but stopped teaching about 18 months ago when I had my first (and only so far) baby. Thank you for sharing your life! You are such an amazing woman!

  131. Oh Kelle CONGRATULATIONS!!! I had pre-ordered “bloom” from Amazon and it arrived today and of course I was sucked right into it. You are simply amazing! I have read Nella’s Birth Story multiple times and have been following your blog since just after her birth and yet reading it from your book has brought me to tears once again. God knew exactly what he was doing when he sent Nella to your family. Thank you for sharing your heartfelt stories and your gorgeous family. You have touched lives in ways I am sure you can’t imagine. Keep doing what your doing and you will continue to change people’s lives for the better. OK – gotta go … I have a book to read :)

  132. ahh! seriously?! you’re signing books the day that we leave SWFL to head up north before leaving for Kenya (to move there). major bummer! my husband came home from work today and he asked me how my day was and it went like this “guess what is so sad? kelle is signing her new books the very day we leave.” :) he was very supportive – gave me a good encouraging smile back. i’m so happy for you, kelle. congratulations! blessings to you and your family…

  133. I started reading your book during my lunch from work today! Love it already!! Congratulations Kelle!! :0)

    – jen

  134. What am I enjoying right now…Week 39 of my third pregnancy…The anticipation is killing me :-)

    Congratulations on your book!

  135. SCORE! I bought your book today at Target:) I swear my heart skipped a beat when I saw it on the shelf. Having followed your blog since Nella’s amazing birth, I felt such a rush of excitment for your success in writing a book!

    Gotta run now:) Since my busy day has finally come to a close, I now get to go upstairs, get cozy and dive head first into your book. CAN NOT wait……

    Susan from Boston

  136. Beautiful pictures! I cannot wait to get my hands on your book! :) Hope you are feeling better soon!

  137. I am half-way through “Bloom” and LOVING it! I “shared” the trailer on my Facebook page and all my girlfriends who (like me) have a child with Down’s watched it, were moved by it, and ‘shared it’ as well- so the network spreads! You have touched so many lives and are a true inspiration to me.

    A weird coincidence- my daughter, Olivia, who also has Down’s, was ALSO born at 4:24 p.m. (different date of course-Nov.30,2006, but same time)- I feel like I have another “cool link” to you know πŸ˜‰

  138. Congratulations, I cried when I read Weds’ post, that your book is on the shelves. I started reading your blog not long after Nella was born by a recommendation from a woman I knew. Our 2nd son has down syndrome, he is now 4, his brother is 5 and a half (that half is a requirement). I went to your site, oh a dozen times, in the beginning before I could even read it. My heart was still aching as we found out when our son was born that he has this wonderful thing called down syndrome. Once I read Nella’s birth story, I sobbed and sobbed—-it was very much like our son’s. The title of your book is more appropriate than you may realize when it comes to the beginning of feeling so shaken up, to growing with your child and it becoming as natural as breathing to accept everything about each of them as a “good and perfect gift”. I just want to say thank you for this blog and your book and living your life in your blog, AND through God’s grace, He has in part used you and your story to heal a mother’s heart and soul. I am planning to purchase your book, and if you are ever in North Carolina, I’m coming to find you to say thank you and please sign my book. :) May God bless you and your family in the most amazing ways.

  139. I am just into chapter 3 after having my book arrive at my doorstep this evening. I am so impressed by the book; the photos, the flow, I am forcing myself to slow down and take it in.

    For the lovers of books, photography and inspiration…Bloom satisfies all the senses :)

    Great job and congrats!

  140. Kelle, Congratulations on your book! It’s wonderful! I’ve been up the last two nights until the wee hours reading it. I’m almost done. I’ve never wrote a comment on any blog before for fear that I’d sound like a stalker or something. I’m compelled tonight to tell you how much your blog has meant to me the past two years. I became a mother for the first time in January 2010 and started following you in February of that year. I was taken immediately by your honest perspective and visual diary. Having lost my own mother 10 years ago when I was 25…your blog came into my life during at time when I was feeling a little lost in my new role as a mother. I felt scared and overwhelmed and unsure of my abilities. You became a mommy mentor to me from afar. You have inspired me in so many ways and I am in such a good place now. I’m home with my girl and cultivating my own ‘Net’. Your words and pictures have been such a gift to me. I’m so thankful. Congratulations again!

  141. Just got my copy of Bloom (so thankful for Amazon Prime 2 day free shipping!!!) and am soo excited to read it over the weekend. In between celebrating Passover seder with lots of family and friends, I’m looking forward to snuggling up with this book!

  142. So excited , just got my book, but I actually stopped reading because I want to save it and yes there were tears, just because you write so beautifully about life , love , and Down Syndrome. So happy to see the book had your photographs as well, a gorgeous book to hold and I know I will be giving as gifts. Congratulations and thank you.
    Carol (mom to Hannah, age 6)

  143. Hello Kelle,

    Im a big fan of your blog! I also ordered your book and I’m loving it. I also have 2 children, a boy who’s turning 5 next week and a little girl, who will be 1 in May.
    We are from Munich, Germany, so your book had a long way to get here.

    Best wishes,

  144. Wow! Must be an amazing feeling having all these people from around the world reading your book. I just got my copy!! Thank you.. What a touching fantastic real book.. from an amazing photographer! Didn’t know someone could be such a great writer and great photographer!!
    Way to go rockstar!


  145. I received my copy of Bloom yesterday and I read the entire thing, cover to cover, in an hour. I thought I would already know your story because I’ve been following your blog since someone forwarded Nella’s birth story to me, but there was so much more to learn (and I’m sure there’s even more you’re keeping to yourself!) I absolutely loved your memoir, and wanted to take the time to say, “well done!”

    Thank you for sharing your life, your joys, your struggles with us. I am not one of those rainbow-and-unicorns-glass-half-full people, but your outlook on life has encouraged me to look for the positive in every circumstance.

    Enjoy your weekend :)

  146. Went to Barnes and Noble last night and got my copy of your book! I am only 22 and not a mom, but have been impacted and changed through several experiences with children with Down syndrome and autism. Even though you and I are in totally different life stages, much like my sister who is a mom, I really love your words and can relate on so many levels to the feelings of uncertainty that bring wonderful, life-enhancing change. I am so proud of you and your book and I’m about half way through and can’t put it down. I blogged about it to my friends in hopes that they, too, will read it and be changed!

    Congratulations on a dream come true!

  147. Congrats Kelle!!! So happy for you.
    Can’t wait for my copy to come-if B&N would ship it already!! : /
    We are enjoying going to my husband’s family’s house for Easter tonight. Happy Easter to you!

  148. Got my book a day early!! Woohoo!! Started it last night… it is wonderfully written. Well done Kelle.

  149. The book is beautiful…amazing! I got back in to town at midnight and tore open the box. What an exciting moment for you! Congratulations on accomplishing this dream! I dug in to the first two chapters last night and will surely finish it by tomorrow! Congratulations again!!

  150. come visit my blog!!! can wait to read Bloom!

  151. I love reading your blog. I just thought I’d say that. The gorgeous photographs, the beautiful girls (yourself included, lady)… It’s all marvelous. :)
    I was up from 2-3am with horrible cramps so sans anything else to do, I lay with a heating pad about my middle and your book propped up in front of me. :) I’m over halfway done because of that hour of pain and at the same time enjoyment with your book.
    I did have a question though, about the event you held a few weeks back where we were to email a screenshot of our Bloom receipts and you would send an autographed book plate? I wasn’t sure if you just hadn’t sent htem out yet or what. No rush. :) Just wanting to make sure my email was noticed. πŸ˜‰

  152. 1) lovely blog post as always!
    2) I heard the door bell ring on April 3rd at about 12:30ish and knew instantly that it was my copy of your amazing book. I was SO excited I felt like it was a first date!!!!
    3) I can’t believe how incredibly smart Nella is! She is one AWESOME little girl! So is Lainey. She’s so beautiful and I can tell just from the way you write about her and photograph her she’s going to be one amazing young person when she grows up!

    You’re so awesome!

  153. Received my book today! Kelle, it is just a beautiful book. I love how so many pictures are blended with the story.

    Congratulations on adding “author” to your incredible life journey!

  154. I just got my copy of “Bloom” and I can’t wait to read it.

  155. Just finished reading Bloom…couldn’t put it down. So enjoyed reading it, thank you for taking the time to share you heart and hopes. You’re family is truly beautiful!!

  156. Looks like Nella is going to drop her bottle on Lainey’s head.

    Just bought your book on my lunch hour. Come onnnnn 5:00, I’ve got some reading to do!

    I bet that’s one awesome feeling… seeing your own book on the store shelf. Congratulations Kelle!

  157. Just finished the book. LOVED it, could not stop reading. I admire you, you are so brave and you will rock the world.
    Thanks for sharing your story!
    Katrin from Berlin, Germany

  158. So a dear friend turned me onto your blog which has changed my thoughts as well as some of my everyday actions. I am the mother of 4 beautiful girls and often feel the same as you but unfortunately cannot put my feelings in the eloquent words you can. I received Bloom on Wednesday and finished it last night because I could not put it down. Thank you Kelle for the inspiring words and thoughts you have written and for making me stop and enjoy all of the small things in my life. i wish you and your family all of the best- and know that the beautiful pictures you take are appreciated and loved!

  159. KELLE!!!! I walked in to work this morning to THE BEST SURPRISE EVER!!! My pre-order copy of bloom, right there on my desk… the copy that was supposed to arrive on Saturday, that I have been so anxiously awaiting, ITS HERE!!! I can not wait to dive in and spend the evening with you… Have already cried just reading your dedication page – and the goosebumps don’t stop with the turn of every page. Problem is, I DON’T WANT TO WORK!!! Just want to ready your beautiful creation. counting the minutes, and so incredibly excited for you, your family, and mine – you’ve put a new perspective on life, love and enjoying all that is in it. Thank you, thank you, thank you. YOU, Kelle, are a ROCK STAR!!! ~Alexa

  160. Thrilled for YOU!! I look forward to the day when Lainey and Nella write a book of all of their amazing childhood memories and lessons learned.
    Best Wishes to you & your lovely family.
    Dream BIG! Dreams & Wishes do come true!!

  161. I read the book in about 5 hours and it was even more wonderful that I expected! I don’t remember when I started reading your blog or even how I found it, but I’ve always enjoyed reading it.

    You amaze me, Kelle. Lainey and Nella are so lucky.


  162. LOOOOVING the book, I cried at least 10 times by page 75! Your story is so touching. Nella is definitely an angel so close to the veil of Heaven you can feel it! What an amazing blessing to have in your home.

  163. Just finished reading the book. I lack the words to tell you just how beautiful that book really is. One part that touched me the most was when you wrote about not wanting people to have pity for you because you have a child with Down Syndrome. And in that moment, I immediately thought, ‘this woman has no idea just how inspiring, admirable and amazing she really is”. No pity here. Nope, just amazement. Kelle, not just because of your love for Nella, but also because of your absolute zest for life, your no-holds-barred attitude, your complete dedication to your role as a mommy, and your seemingly innate nature to ‘find the unicorn’ in every situation, I admire you. I so, so admire you and hope that I can and will convey the love I have for my kids to them in the beautiful, loving, and kick ass way that you for yours.
    Love from Cali,

  164. Just finished reading the book. I lack the words to tell you just how beautiful that book really is. One part that touched me the most was when you wrote about not wanting people to have pity for you because you have a child with Down Syndrome. And in that moment, I immediately thought, ‘this woman has no idea just how inspiring, admirable and amazing she really is”. No pity here. Nope, just amazement. Kelle, not just because of your love for Nella, but also because of your absolute zest for life, your no-holds-barred attitude, your complete dedication to your role as a mommy, and your seemingly innate nature to ‘find the unicorn’ in every situation, I admire you. I so, so admire you and hope that I can and will convey the love I have for my kids to them in the beautiful, loving, and kick ass way that you for yours.
    Love from Cali,

  165. Congratulations Kelle! What an accomplishment Bloom is! I’ve been following your blog for about a year now and I just love how you always completely and fully seize the moment, how you relish your kids and appreciate them right now to the fullest, understanding and accepting that time will keep moving. You demonstrate for the rest of us moms how to not dread that forward movement, to embrace it, as it’s part of life and how important it is to make memories for our kids. What makes you different from other mom blogs is that you aren’t trying too hard, you aren’t straining to be that perfect mom who’s real goal is to show off or compete with other moms – you are the real deal. I’m a mother of two girls myself, 2.5 years and 4 months. I can honestly say I look at life a bit differently, thanks to you. Best of luck to you with Bloom, I am really looking forward to reading it, and also reading your next book, as I believe this is just the beginning for you my friend :)

    All the best,

  166. I’m enjoying MY BOOK!!!!!! Hooray!

  167. i spent this afternoon alternately weeping and laughing, sometimes at the same time, because of you! i meant to buy “bloom” but instead stopped in my tracks and read for an hour in the barnes and noble cafe. i could. not. stop! such wonderful, inspiring, life-shifting words. i don’t know if it’s because i feel like i “know” you through the blog, or if it speaks to me as a mama, but i love it!

  168. Just wanted you to know Iowa is reading Bloom! My mom got impatient for her copy to arrive and sought out to find one at the local book store. Target and B&N are SOLD OUT! And I’m one of the lucky ones… πŸ˜‰

    Happy Easter to the Hampton’s! Blessings from our home to yours!

    Jorgensen Better Together

  169. Congratulations on your book release! What an amazing accomplishment! My dream one day is to write a book, one day! I can’t wait to recieve my copy in the mail! I know everything will stop as I’ll want to devour it straight away! Happy Easter to you and you family xxx

  170. Congratulations on your book release! What an amazing accomplishment! My dream one day is to write a book, one day! I can’t wait to recieve my copy in the mail! I know everything will stop as I’ll want to devour it straight away! Happy Easter to you and you family xxx

  171. Congratulations on your book debut Kelle!! I am so excited to read your words in print! You should be so proud of yourself this week. Thanks for sharing your life with us!

  172. I’m absolutely in love with this book! I finally had the chance to open it last night, which really killed me since I’ve had it since Tuesday. But anyway, I couldn’t put it down. Suddenly it was 1am. Then I finally went to sleep and of course, dreamt about you and your family. I was part of it, naturally, and I was holding Nella in the hospital room. I wonder if I’m the only creep who has now drawn myself into your family in my subconscious. Oh well, it’s a great place to be. Happy Easter XO Jenna

  173. Loved it! An amazing and beautiful memoir. I so appreciate your outlook on life, your honesty and your enthusiasm for the “small things”. Congrats!

  174. My friends and I like to “burn wood” as we call it, too. Sometimes it’s nicer to stay “in” then to go out.

  175. I hope the book will also come to the Netherlands

  176. Congratulations!!! That had to be very exciting! I can’t wait to get my own copy. Procrastion… I missed the pre-order.
    Of course, it is tempting to make the 2 hour drive for the signing on Friday.
    Enjoy this beautiful day with your beautiful family :)

  177. Congratulations!!! That had to be very exciting! I can’t wait to get my own copy. Procrastion… I missed the pre-order.
    Of course, it is tempting to make the 2 hour drive for the signing on Friday.
    Enjoy this beautiful day with your beautiful family :)

  178. Picked up my copy several days ago and am loving every word I read. Thank-you Kelle for your honesty, your sweetness and your amazing ability to open your heart and let us all share you precious little family. P.S. Loving the photos, my favorite part of, “BLOOM.”

  179. Kelle,
    Congratulations on your beautiful book! I got my copy last Friday and I finished it over the weekend. It is amazing!!! You completely changed my perspective on having babies and I hope one day I will be a wonderful mother to my children as you are to Lainey and Nella. Your girls are beautiful!

  180. I finished your book last night! Sooooo great- congratulations! I literally took a pic of a page from my kindle and sent it to a friend… “You have to read this paragraph… it is SOOO what you have to hear right now!” I started my own blog last week, and put a link to yours on my page… Hope you don’t mind. All the best!

  181. So very thrilled for you!!!! Cannot wait to receive my signed-book-insert-thingy-ma-jig that i get because I pre-ordered!!!!! :) So happy….

  182. Congratulations!
    Now just wanted to read the book, but I live in Brazil. = /

    Sorry for the bad English (via google translator) = x

    Agora so queria poder ler o livro, mas moro no Brasil. =/

  183. When I read this post I was in the middle of composing my own BALANCE list and finally finished it yesterday…thought I’d share:


    I’m bummed my in-laws are leaving Naples the morning of your book signing…I was hoping for a copy! Amazon here I come:)

  184. Beautiful, touching blog & book! Planning to attend the book signing with my mom & sister to show our support. We’ve been blessed & comforted by your words, and look forward to having our books signed! :)

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