This blog is an uncensored look into my soul. I am writing this as part of my healing process, but am leaving it public so others can follow me through my journey.

If you'd like to start from the beginning, click on the beautiful, adorable picture of Hailey on the right hand column.

You can also email me at:

Monday, August 8, 2011


As the two-year “anniversary” of Hailey’s death quickly approaches I’ve been reflecting a lot on what I’ve learned since she died.  First off, I put the word anniversary in quotes because I hate using that term for a death.  To me, an anniversary should be something celebrated…a joyous event, so I’ll do my best to celebrate that “beau’ful” little life she lived.  Anyways, I’m not going to lie and say these past two years haven’t been the hardest, most excruciating years of my life because they absolutely have, but even so, I’m still here and moving forward everyday.  Even more surprising is that I still feel peace and joy at times.  This is because my precious child lives on and I know how proud she is of all the work we’re doing in her honor!

Over the past week as I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about who I am and how this trial has changed me.  One of my big epiphanies was that I'm not taking full advantage of one the special “gifts” that Hailey has given me.  I realized that I wasn’t enjoying my children, or my life for that matter.  When Hailey first passed away I remember suddenly becoming so aware of the little things and how important they are.  By little things I mean hearing my children laugh, seeing a beautiful butterfly, eating a yummy ice cream sundae, etc.  I really started to appreciate and savor those moments and it was wonderful.  Unfortunately, that appreciation didn’t last as long as I would have liked and I quickly fell back into being easily annoyed by the little things.  In this case, by little things, I mean a spilled drink on the table, a messy playroom, a fussy child, some traffic on the freeway, and so on.  Those “little things” that I once so appreciated were now overshadowed by the “little things” I began to find so darn annoying. 

I've finally gotten sick of being annoyed and miserable all the time and decided to really pray about it.  I mean, a real prayer.  Like the get on my knees, pour my heart out, and beg the Lord for help kind of prayer. So I did just that and I’ve done just that every single day now for over a week.  I told Him how much I just want to be happy.  How badly I want to enjoy my husband and children.  How I want to hear my children laugh and feel joy.  How I want to see the sun shine and feel joy. How I just want to wake up in the morning and feel joy.  And how willing I was to do whatever it would take to develop that feeling of joy.

The day after my first prayer I already started to feel it.  One of the impressions that came upon me was to stop voicing all my complaints aloud but instead keep them to myself.  And when those negative thoughts do creep in, argue with them, play devil’s advocate and see how true they really are (or aren’t!). Okay, WAY easier said than done!!!  But I truly feel that as I work on this and speak positively my thoughts will eventually follow suit.  My prayers aren’t usually answered this quickly or profoundly, but I think that God knows my desperation and pure intent. 

Then, sure enough, on Sunday in church one of the lessons we had was completely on JOY!!  I mean, could that have been any more perfect?  It so inspired me!  I know that God wants us so badly to be happy and feel joy, just as we want that for our own children.  Of course it may not be possible every single day, but I think overall when we look back upon our life, He would want us to say we lived a happy, joyful life.  So that has become my mission.  And let me just say, it is a work in progress.

So, what does this all have to do with the two-year “anniversary” of Hailey’s death? 

Well, another impression I had while praying was that one of the “gifts” Hailey gave me when she passed away was the freedom to enjoy her siblings.  When she was here, almost all my time, efforts, and worries were focused on her, which they should have been.  But that also left me little time to focus on her sisters.  Luckily, they are both healthy, very happy, well adjusted kids so it didn’t seem to bother them much.  But now I no longer have to worry about Hailey.  I know where she is and that she is much better off than she ever was here.  Does that make everything okay?  Of course not!  However, it should give me the peace of mind to be able to focus on my other girls and my new baby boy.  I realized that I owe that to her.  I owe it to her to take care of her siblings and enjoy them to the fullest.  Yet I have done nothing of the sort. 

I realized that I’m have become such a ridiculous control freak because losing Hailey made me feel so out of control.  I waste so much time being stressed and anxious over trying to control every aspect of my life and everything around me.  To be quite honest, it is so exhausting and extremely overwhelming.  The ironic thing is that losing Hailey really should have taught me that I truly have no control over anything or anyone but myself and the way I behave.  That’s a tough thing for me to swallow, but I’ve finally gotten to where I’m ready to give it up.  I literally cannot do it anymore.  I have wasted so much time stressing over everything being exactly as I think it should be that I’ve completely missed out on the pure joy of those little things.

So the past few days I have seriously worked really hard at letting go of that false sense of control and just enjoying what is.  I am constantly reminding myself that those little things that I think are so annoying and frustrating will pass tomorrow and be completely forgotten.  So why waste one second on them now?  Not to mention that my little kiddos are not going to be so little for long.  I don’t want to look back on their childhood wondering why I wasted it all away trying to be in control rather than just loving what is and enjoying who they are.

Today was the perfect test.  I had all planned out in my mind how it would go, yet it went completely different and I totally embraced it.  Ava wasn’t feeling well and actually slept until 11:30…yes, 11:30!  That is completely unheard of and the “old” me would have been so annoyed that she missed preschool and I didn’t get to do the errands I was planning on. Instead, I reminded myself that my sweet little girl needed her rest and if my errands didn’t get done that morning, the world was not going to end. (Although, I’d probably be cool if it did!)  I embraced the peace and quiet and actually relaxed.  When she woke up, I took the girls out front on the driveway and pulled out this huge cardboard house Sean and I bought, a bunch of paints, paintbrushes, and markers and just let them go at it.  (So not my style…too messy!)  We had so much fun together!!!  The three of us sat out there and painted, chatted, and giggled for several hours.  And when Lexi asked me if she could paint her face (It was washable…I’m not that relaxed yet!) my initial reaction was to say “No way,” but instead I looked at her and said, “Absolutely!”  So, of course, Ava followed along and they had a blast!  And you know what?  When we were all finished, I put them in the bath and washed it all away…and yes, the world was still spinning! 

To some of you this may sound so trivial because you do things like this all the time with your kids, but for me, that would normally be very overwhelming due to the lack of control I would have felt over the mess.  Today I learned that messes can be cleaned up, but precious moments lost cannot be retrieved.  I think Hailey would have been very proud of the fun I had with her sisters!!!

So, in honor of Hailey’s 2nd Heavenly birthday, my gift to her is to truly enjoy her siblings and the “worry free” life she left me.  Of course, I would take all those worries she brought with her back in a heartbeat if it meant she were here, but since that’s not an option I’m going to do my very best to feel a little bit of JOY, in her honor, each and every day!

Here are some pictures to prove it!!!
(Seeing the joy in my girls' faces made it all worth it!)

Friday, August 5, 2011

Video from the aMAYZing Kids Fundraiser!

Hi Everyone-

Here is the video from the "entertainment" portion of our fundraiser last Saturday.  It's about an hour long, so below is a list of what is featured.  In parenthesis is the time frame you can find it on the video in case you don't have time to watch the entire thing.  Drag the bar at the bottom of the video to get where you want to be.  (For example: If you just want to watch the first musical number drag the bar to the 15 mark.)  It's all really great though!!!

Click Below for the Video:
aMAYZing Kids Fundraiser 

  • Intro 
    • Sean's Remarks
  • 2 Musical #'s (@ 15 min) 
    • (The second one was written by Sean's brother for Hailey while he was on the plane flying out here for her funeral...It's absolutely beautiful!)
  • Halo Recipient (@ 26 min) 
    • This is a family who received a "Halo" from your generous donations.
  • Hailey's Therapists (@ 33 min)
    • These are the four therapists who worked with Hailey and who will be running the clinic!
  • Me (@ 42 min)
    • Yes, I said some stuff.
  • Grampies' Song (@ 47 min)
    • My dad decided to sing a quick impromptu song for Hailey.
  • 2 Musical #'s (@ 50 min)
    • One written especially for Hailey after the dragonfly story I wrote on my blog - I explain it on the video. (50 min)
    • In My Daughter's Eyes...a song that I used and dedicated to Hailey in her first birthday video. (54 min)
  • Closing Remarks (@ 57 min)
I hope you enjoy it!

Monday, August 1, 2011

The aMAYZing Kids Fundraiser!

Wow!  People are so “aMAYZingly” good!  Saturday night we had a fundraiser to help make our dream come true of opening the aMAYZing Kids therapy clinic in Hailey’s honor.  It was an enormous success!  I can’t even describe how overwhelmed I am by the amount of people who came out to support us!!!  It was one of the most aMAYZing nights I’ve ever had!  As Sean and I stood up and addressed the crowd (I’ll post video once we receive it) my heart literally swelled with gratitude for each and every face staring back at us.  To be loved that much by so many people is indescribable. 

The generosity of people, especially in tough economic times like these, is something that I am in complete awe of.  I was telling my sister in the car on the way home that night how I felt somewhat embarrassed by the fact that I don't even know where to begin in properly thanking each and every person for their immense support.  I am a person of many words, but sometimes there really are none.  I guess all I can do is pay it forward and pray each night that the Lord will personally bless each and every person who has taken time out of their busy life to show their love, compassion, and support for us.  It was an honor to be in the same room with so many wonderful people! 

At the end of the night we ended up raising $20,000 to go toward the clinic!!!  I’d have to say it was a HUGE success.  We are so excited to have the opportunity to open such a special place.  The whole point of this new clinic is to help underprivileged and/or under-insured children get the help they need to live as normal a life as possible.  I was quite skeptical myself about putting Hailey into therapy when she had just turned one.  She only had an hour a week and I wasn’t convinced that was going to do her any good.  To be totally honest, as you all know I am, I only put her in it because it was free and gave me an hour break!!

Well let me just say, I am now a believer and huge advocate for these services.  The therapists that worked with Hailey literally changed her life.  Not only did she learn to do “simple” things that you and I take for granted (like step up onto a curb), but she gained such confidence in herself (almost too much at times!)!!  Her quality of life would not have been near what it was without these amazing therapists in her life.  This is why we are so passionate about making sure that other children get the services they also need.  I can’t imagine what it would be like to be a parent who has to watch their child struggle and deteriorate because they cannot afford therapy and honestly I didn’t realize what a reality that is for so many right now.  Several “halos” we’ve given out were to families who needed help paying for therapy for their child.

All that being said, this is why we’re so excited about The aMAYZing Kids Clinic!!!  To be able to help children get the services they need in Hailey’s honor is so exciting!  Losing a loved one is the worst thing in the world, so if it’s possible to make some good come out of it that means everything.  Opening this clinic has become Sean’s passion and he has worked hundreds of hours with Hailey’s therapists to achieve this dream.  I wish I could take some of the credit for something so great, but I have to admit that it’s all them.  They are a ridiculously amazing group of people and anyone who has the honor to work with them should consider themselves extremely lucky!

I think one of the most important and special things about the clinic is that it’s non-profit.  Sean and I will never make a dime on this venture.  It’s all about giving back and helping those in need!  Losing Hailey has taught me how wonderful it feels to serve and give to others!  It’s such an awesome feeling!

Hailey made Sean, myself, and her therapists very proud while she was here, so I hope that we are now able to make her just as proud!

Here are some pics from the event!
(I tried to stay away from posting pictures of the guests for privacy, but just for the record there were about 150 people in attendance!!)

Here you could purchase one of Hailey's hand prints and write a message to her.  They will be made into a mural by a professional artist to go permanently on the wall in the clinic!
(If you're interested in buying a hand print for yourself, please email me at  They are $5.00.  I will mail it to you so you can write your message for the mural!)

We gave away a diamond ring that was donated!
(Oh, and there was Martinelli's Apple Cider for those non-champagne drinkers!  Ha Ha!) 

The equipment wall!
(Also, if you're interested in purchasing a piece of equipment for the clinic please email me at the above address and I can let you know what's available.)

Hailey's Table
This was full of photos and knick knacks that belonged to Hailey! 

The 4 most aMAYZing therapists in the whole world!
Me showing off a custom made necklace in Hailey's honor.  It's a halo of diamonds with white gold angel wings.  The couple who won this in the auction later gave it to me as a gift!!!  I am soooooo thrilled!!!

There were several musical numbers, most of which were written just for Hailey.  (This is one of the therapist's daughter singing.)

The final song, In My Daughter's Eyes, really brought the tears flowing...

Some of our many sponsors...
We also have Ed Asner as an official sponsor too!!!  Click on Ed's name below to view his public service announcement!!!  
(For those of you "youngins" who don't know who Ed Asner is, one of his latest projects was the voice of the man in the movie Up!) 

If you haven't already checked out the aMAYZing Kids website click on the following link: