Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Happy 12th Birthday Candace!

Today is Candace's 12th birthday. She passed away on Valentine's Day 2007. 

This is one of the few family pictures we have with all of us in it together. I remember it was hard to get Zach to sit still to take these pictures. In fact, we told him he only had to do 3 pictures and you can see his right hand counting down. I remember Shaylin struggling to choose between her 2nd grade class Valentine's Day party or staying with her baby sister for what she knew could be her last moments. I remember Hailey being so enamored with her baby sister, she loved the feeling of putting her finger in the hole of the pacifier and feeling Candace's little mouth sucking on the pacifier. These are a few of the precious memories for me and are accompanied with so many wide-ranging emotions including joy, sorrow, happiness, heartache, celebrating life, embracing death, peace, anxiousness, faith, uncertainty, love, and the incredible gift of comfort given through the Holy Ghost. As I reflect back on this day, I am given so much peace knowing that we will hold our Candace again and we will be reunited as a complete family again. I'm so thankful for our Savior, Jesus Christ, and his atoning sacrifice that makes it possible for all of us to be reunited with those loved ones we have lost. Happy Birthday Candace!
Our annual balloon release for Candace's birthday.  Well, it was one-of-a-kind balloon release.  I'll explain.  Jon was gone to Florida on Candace's birthday, so we didn't get to do it ON her birthday.  Zach worked late on Valentine's Day.  I was gone from 1:00-10:00pm on Friday judging Idaho's dance competition.  That brings us to Saturday, but dad had an appointment scheduled and Zach had work, so we determined to get the balloons as late as we could Saturday evening and release them Sunday afternoon after church.  Well, as you can see from the pictures, they weren't exactly "floating high" from helium, but we (some of us) were confident the wind would help us out and carry them up.  We decided to release them from our Charter Pointe park this year.  Enjoy the pictures that follow. . . 
Go balloons, you can do it!

Zach trying to "help" the balloons along.

The boys chased them all the way down the field.  One never took flight from the field and the boys brought it back to the car.  We watched the others sort of floating.  We followed the balloons down SeaBreeze.  One came down on the road and another came down by the clubhouse.  The other 3 actually made it up, up and away!  Of course the kids wanted to know who's balloons made it and who's didn't.  Shaylin, Zach, and Ethan's balloons made it up, up and away!  😊
We've had some extremely rainy weather the past couple of weeks, but on the evening of (Candace's birthday), the rain stopped and these beautiful pink clouds formed.  The picture makes them look orange, but they were pink as could be.  We love our pink for Candace, right? 
Later on Wednesday, I was even able to release a balloon for Candace's birthday! That's one tradition that my family does every year is release pink balloons together. I'm so grateful I was able to even find a balloon (courtesy of Valentine's Day) to continue that tradition! :)

Friday, February 23, 2018

Happy 11th Birthday Candace!

We had beautiful sunny weather for your balloon launch this year.
 I guess all the dogs thought it was a good day to be out too, because we had so many dogs come and up and see us while we were there.  This one reminded us of good ol' Sunny dog who is in heaven with you.  It was a sweet reminder of her as we celebrated your birthday.
 Your family just can't take a normal picture.  Love them!
 This scene never changes from year to year as we all watch the balloons drift out of sight.  However, what does change is the size of each of the children as they grow a year older each year.  We miss seeing you grow each year and I often think about what you would be involved with and doing right now if you were still with us. 
We miss you sweet Candace.  Happy Birthday!

Monday, February 13, 2017

Happy 10th Birthday!

 Jon and I just returned from a cruise to the Caribbean yesterday.  
We were so glad to be home in time to celebrate Candace's birthday with the family.

 Ethan has been quite sensitive this year and talking a lot about Candace.  He's been 
emotional about it and missing his sister.  They must have been very 
close in heaven, as he hasn't met her on earth before.

It's hard to believe that Candace would be 10 years old today.  
Time has a way of continuing to tick on whether we're ready for it to or not.

Happy 9th Birthday!

 Today we celebrated Candace's 9th Birthday!  

It was also Sweathearts dance for Shaylin.
She and her date came and joined us in our annual balloon launch.

 I love how good of friends our kids are.

Heading to the "launch pad" at Ann Morrison Park.

Ethan and Mom playing a little hide-n-seek before the launch.

We love that the kids have an enjoyable time and happy memories 
each year as we celebrate her birthday.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Happy 8th Birthday to our little Angel!

Today is our angel daughter Candace's 8th birthday.  The dress she would have worn for her baptism hangs empty next to her first white dress.  We picked her name because of it's meaning: flowing white, pure.  How fitting to be reminded of this today on her 8th birthday.  This mama's heart can't help but ache a little at the different earthly milestones missed, but I also rejoice knowing that she is already perfect and waiting patiently for our family to be reunited again one day.  I'm so very grateful for temple covenants and eternal families.  I know I'll hold my little girl again.  Happy Birthday my sweet daughter!  

Candace's 8th Birthday Balloon Launch

Friday, August 1, 2014

A Bonus Visit

 We went back to Oregon to visit family and friends 
and were able to spend a little time at Candace's grave.  
There is such a peaceful feeling when our family is 
gathered together there.
 I had to get a picture with all 5 of my children 
in it, even if it's just a picture of Candace. =)
As we were getting ready to leave, Hailey was 
having a hard time.  I was standing back a bit
 and noticed Zach put his arm around her and 
comfort her.  It was such a sweet moment to capture.