Our family enjoyed celebrating Candace's 1st Birthday. We wrote little notes, and put them in balloons and filled them with helium. We went to her graveside, excited to surprise the children with her new grave marker that was just finished and put in the previous week. We laid down a tarp (the grass in the winter is so soggy), and sat on the tarp, wrapped in blankets recounting memories of our time with Candace and singing songs. The children had fun decorating her little spot for her birthday and Valentine's Day. We finished off with singing every birthday song imaginable and releasing the balloons. We returned home to celebrate with a birthday cake and presents. Yes, the children were confused about this and why Candace was being given gifts. They all quickly figured out that she wasn't receiving the gifts, but that they had each received 1 simple present, something for them, rather than for Candace on her birthday. It was a fun twist and surprise.
We have been so blessed to be remembered by so many. Our porch has been the landing spot for so many notes, cards, plates of goodies, butterflies, butterflies, and more butterflies. I can't remember if I've shared the significance of the butterfly, but here's a brief catch up. A short time after Candace passed away the children came up with an analogy of Candace and a butterfly. They explained that when she was in my tummy she was a caterpillar, when she was born she was in her chrysalis because she couldn't move around very well in her body, when she passed away her spirit was set free and could fly away to heaven just like a butterfly. So, there you have it. We have pink butterflies in various locations around our house as sweet reminders of our little Candace, and now our yard and front porch have been decorated with butterflies by sweet friends. We are well taken care of, and with each gesture we are reminded that Candace hasn't been forgotten.