"Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up." - Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
Friends are amazing. We have been so touched by friends and family, both the ones that we know in person and those online. We received such an outpouring of e-mails, phone calls, letters, gifts, prayers, and hugs last week, as we celebrated Lilly's 2nd birthday without her in our arms. She of course had the ultimate party in heaven! Through the tears and smiles of remembering Lilly, we were certainly held up by friends and family.
I wanted to post pictures of all the gifts here, mainly as a journal for my family. But I thought my readers might enjoy seeing them too.
First is the gift I bought Lilly. (Last year I bought her this one, and thought I'd add to the collection each year. We buy our other children birthday gifts, it only seems right to with Lilly too.)
From Ann Barnes, the author of The Care of the Infant and Child with Trisomy 18 or Trisomy 13, (the most helpful Trisomy 18 book out there!) we received this wonderful frame with hooks (perfect for hanging some of Lilly's b'day dresses on):
The Barnes family had a daughter, Megan, that lived almost 20 years with Trisomy 18. How amazing is that??!! (Today, July 8, is Megan's birthday. I wonder if she's having a party in heaven!)
From C.N-R, the mom of angel Darian, a baby girl that lived one day with Trisomy 18, we received these beautiful pictures and the card that is in the pictures:
C. took the photos of the Lilly card she made on what she had dubbed "Darian's Beach." It is in Canada and certainly looks like an amazingly beautiful place!
From C.C., mama of angel Jordan, a baby girl that lived three days with Trisomy 18, we received a sweet book entitled To Let You Know I Care and an angel ornament:
Look at Jordan's precious tiny footprints on the front of the card! C. wrote that an older woman in her community made the angel to share with another angel mom. C. added the "Lilly colored" ribbon.
From my friend H.B., H. received a "Lilly colored" necktie (his first tie and he is SO excited about it) and T. a red hairbow with a flag on it. (T. always has a hairbow or flower in her hair.) I received the doily:
H. wrote in a letter that her great-grandmother made the doily. It's not easy to see in the picture, but wow - what amazing work she did! H. said she was the wife of a railroad man and farmer and a faithful and godly woman. And that she had 8 children. One son died of pneumonia at about a year old. Like Lilly, he died at home in his sleep.
From A.S. we received the most remarkable Christmas stockings I have ever seen:
A's friend hand made these. Every stitch, bead and sequince was hand-sewn. It takes about 40 hours to do one stocking! Wow! A. wrote that all the stockings, except my husband's, were finished when Lilly passed away last December. She couldn't bring herself to send them at that time though, but decided that now was the right time. A. has even already had a stocking for our Rainbow Baby made, and all that is left to do is to add his name to it, when he is born. I love Holly Hobbie and A. knew that. Look at this close-up of Lilly's beautiful stocking:
From J.C., the mom of Julia, a little girl that lived for a bit over a year with Trisomy 18 (and who went to heaven the day after Lilly), we received "lilly colored" hand towels, a b'day flag, and an adorable card that J. made:
My friend K.L. dropped off a gift box with the most amazing paper lilies on it. Inside was a beautiful ruby (the July birthstone) beaded angel:
My brother P. and his wife K. had these beautiful flowers sitting on our kitchen counter when we got back from our trip Thursday. The lilies smell sooooo good!
My mom left a gift "from Lilly" to us, a crystal angel ornament for Lilly's tree and a Willow Tree figurine:
H.A. and her family send a tree! A European Cypress tree:
It's way to hot to plant the tree, so we will enjoy it inside until fall at least.
The L. family, that lives very close to us, thoughtfully sent both T. and H. a book. For T. was two books in one: Time at the Top and All in Good Time, books which M.L. said she enjoyed as a child. H. was excited about the Diggers and Dumpers sticker book. Oh yeah - heavy equipment - he loves it!
From Emily's big sisters S. and L. (Emily is 6 years old with Trisomy 18!) we received ornaments for Lilly's memorial tree. Both girls made a wooden ornament. S. took one of her own bears and made clothes for it. I have it sitting under the tree.
Finally, I appreciate the mom's that mentioned Lilly on their blogs last week. (These are all mom's of children with Trisomy 18. Two are still living.)
Aaron's blog: http://compatiblewithjoy-trisomy18.blogspot.com/2012/07/time-of-reflection.html
"The Other Lily's" blog: http://iseeloveblog.blogspot.com/2012/07/summer-camp-2012-and-happy-4th.html
Julia's blog: http://jennychildress.blogspot.com/2012/07/july-4th.html (Check out little angel Julia in her red white and blue bathing suit!)
Thank you EVERYONE for your prayers and for caring. You inspire us to do better at reaching out to others.