my third year without you…

My third year without you I missed you.

I missed you so much.  I missed my center.  I missed the top of my totem pole.  I missed my call for all important and unimportant things.  I missed your warm smile, your huge hugs that automatically made my feel like I was 8 years old again.  I missed your approval and my drive to make you proud of me.  I missed you.  I miss you.  Every single piece of me misses you.

My third year without you I didn’t cry as much.

The first two years after losing you I would constantly feel this rush of grief and it would be tipped off at the slightest of things.  I would burst into tears no matter where I was, who I was with, and what I was doing.  This past year that changed dramatically.  I found the right times to cry and release the pressure that built up from losing you and missing you.  The pressure was strong, frequent, and unbearable at times but I was much better about managing it.

My third year without you I felt grateful.

My third year without you I felt less cheated and more grateful for the time I had with you.  I felt grateful that I had you as a pillar of all things I aspired to be.  I felt grateful for our one-on-one time walking the beach in longboat and I was grateful to carry on that tradition with my own girls.

My third year without you I worried.

I worried that my kids would not know you.  I worried they wouldn’t hear your laugh, feel your hugs, and see the love you had for them.  I worried that you weren’t here to walk beside me as continued to make decisions for Bea’s health.  I am realizing that you’re in the best place possible to help her. To help me.

My third year without you I did things to make you proud.

Your door in our yard got a lot of use and I know you’d be proud that Pappy left treats and toys every so often there.  I know you’d be proud that Jordan & I choose you each Christmas to be the giver of the “big gift” – this year you got the girls a pink bike to share.  And they were so grateful to you.  I know you’d be proud that Bea talked about you often – made up stories and told Poppy of all the things she and Pappy did together.  I know you’d be proud that when I had an extremely hard day recently and didn’t explain why to the girls – that they hugged me and Bea said “I miss Pappy too”.   I know you’d be proud that they know you.

My third year without you I talked to you.

I talked to you every single day.  I was always the talker in our relationship and that hasn’t changed.

My third year without you I felt close to you.

I felt you the day Louise Kelly was born.  I saw you in her eyes and felt so close to you knowing you were with her before I was – holding her until she was delivered to me as a healthy, sweet baby.  I felt close to you at church.  I felt close to you in Longboat.  I felt close to you when I held my girls before bed.  Instead of waiting for signs from you, I chose to find you and see you in Mimi, Carolyn, Mom, Jordan, Dan and Zack.  I found that things they each do remind me of you and I let it lift me up.  I saw you & felt close to you through them.

My third year without you I lived what you taught me.

I listened to my conscience.

I developed strong character.

I was courageous.

My third year without you I survived.



nordstrom anni sale


I’m sure you follow a bazillion bloggers who are currently talking about the nordstrom anniversary sale so disregard if you’ve had your fill.  If you’re still looking into it, below are the details and some items I’ve bought or have on my list 🙂

Nordstrom Ambassadors & Icons shop online Thursday, 7/11

Nordstrom cardholders shop online Friday 7/12 at 12:30pmET

Everyone else 🙂 Shop starting July 19th

First of all, I haven’t been super impressed with the anniversary sale for the last few years.  There isn’t A TON of things I am dying to have BUT it is a great place to stock up on basics and a couple fun pieces.  See a few of my favorites below!

I purchased the below jacket as a great fall neutral.  I bought the blush.  Find it HERE.

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I also purchased this casual jacket to toss on over leggings and a tee when I’m with the girls.  Super casual but cute.  Find it HERE.

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Another jacket on your list if you don’t already have one is this oversized denim jacket.  I ordered this to see how it fits but imagine it would be cute tossed over your shoulders when wearing a fall dress.  Find it HERE.

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Also loving this faux leather jacket – great price and flattering cut.  Find it HERE.

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This is a great work jacket – perfectly paired with denim.  Find it HERE.

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I also grabbed this jacket to try for work.  I love wearing black jeans in the winter and this would be perfect with them.  Find it HERE.

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I can’t wait to see this bag in person.  I ordered thinking it would be a great winter bag to carry for work – I would be able to fit my laptop etc in it easily.  Find it HERE.

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I also love this crossbody bag for the fall – find it HERE.

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I find myself DREADING wearing heels to work.  I think it’s because I’m on my feet SO MUCH with the kids that by the time I’m ready to get dressed for work, flats just seem more doable.  I purchased a couple pairs from the sale.  Find them HERE , HERE and HERE.



A blogger I follow LOVED these booties when she tried them on.  I need something neutral like this in my closet.  Find them HERE.

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I am trying a few pairs of jeans from the same – I always love Mother & AG so those were no brainer.  They are all high waisted (which is a must for me) and a good denim color.  Find them HERE, HERE,.


A few tops/sweaters that I purchased that are great basics.

Find the below sweaters HERE, HERE, HERE HERE HERE


Tops HERE, HERE, and HERE.


Honestly, there are a few other things but I am running out of steam!  I’m hoping to do a follow up post once some of the stuff I bought arrived 🙂  Happy shopping!



LIVERversary – year #4


We are back to reality over here after a week+ of Florida sun and ocean breeze in our favorite spot – Longboat Key.  It was an incredible trip and I can’t wait to do a post about it.

In the meantime – today is a big day.  HUGE day.

Today, 7/7 marks 4 years post liver transplant for our Beatrice.

When looking back at photos from that day, I can hardly believe we went through all of that.  The surgery, the waiting, the recovery, the outcome – all of it was unknown and frightening but we had no choice.

If you’ve read my last post – you know that Bea is doing phenomenally well.  We are starting her vaccinations on Thursday and from the outside AND inside – Bea is a healthy 4.5 year old.

Beatrice – your Dad and I are so proud of you.  You are THE kindest, sweetest, and most loving person I have ever known in my entire life.  You exude strength and I can’t imagine a world without you in it.  And thanks to your doctors and nurses at CCHMC, your family and friends, your guardian angel – I won’t have to.  We love you so deeply.

[My Dad took this picture the morning of her surgery.  While Jordan was taking me back to get prepped, we needed someone with Bea starting at 5am.  He was our immediate choice and was so honored to be with her.]


[1 year post transplant]


[2 years post transplant]


[3 years post transplant]


[4 years post transplant]