Ellie and I had such a memorable day yesterday celebrating my late husband and Ellie’s Daddy, Andrew’s, Heaven birthday! The day started with finding flowers on my front door from a dear friend, which reminded me of God’s goodness to bless us with such amazing friends and family.
Then Ellie, Aunt Betty (aka Saint Betty– don’t know what I would do without her help with Ellie), and I sang happy birthday to Andrew. Ellie blew out the candle as we ate carrot cake at Cheesecake Factory.
After lunch and cake, we walked to James Avery, a famous Texas jewelry shop. This year, I planned to buy Ellie a charm bracelet with the idea of letting her pick out a new charm each year on Andrew’s Heaven birthday. I encouraged her to pick a charm that represented what was important to her this year that she would want her Daddy to know about her. My hope was she would feel more connected to her Dad. She LOVED the idea and spent a good amount of time going through all the charms, finally deciding on her favorite two for this year and last year. If you know Ellie, you know she loves animals, so you can probably guess her first pick was a puppy. The second one she picked was a pink and purple charm with flower designs all over it. Ellie has always enjoyed giving me beautiful flowers, so I thought this flower charm very much reflected her personality.
For the past couple of weeks, I can tell Ellie’s had her Daddy on her mind. Last week, my dad called me from out of town, and since it had been a while since I’d seen or talked to him, I got excited and yelled, “Daddy!” when I picked up the phone. Immediately Ellie’s face lit up and she jumped up and down, screaming, “Daddy!” and my heart sank as I realized she genuinely thought I was talking to her Daddy. She quickly figured out it wasn’t her Daddy on the phone and I could tell she felt a little embarrassed.
On Sunday at church, we we’re encouraged to write prayer requests on a card and Ellie told me to grab a prayer card and write, “Pray for my Daddy.” I did and the church wrote me an email yesterday that said, “I thanked the Lord for Andrew’s life, love, and faith today. And, I prayed for comfort and protection for you and Ellie.” I found it encouraging they happened to pray for Andrew and for our family on Andrew’s Heaven birthday.
We ended the day with Ellie sending a balloon to the sky with this message attached to it, “Dear Daddy, We have a new puppy named Keller. We just want to say we love you. We hope you write us a note in the clouds. Love, Bailey and Ellie.”
Thank you so much for your encouraging Facebook comments, messages, emails, and text messages yesterday. We felt so loved and cared for. Just wanted you to know how grateful we are for YOU! Love and Blessings.
PS – If you’re looking to motivate, inspire, and encourage a group you are a part of, I would love to come share my message of how each and every one of us can transform our most challenging times into the most meaningful and purposeful path for our lives. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.