If you knocked again I'd say yes...Always...

 Ten years ago today I opened my front door to find Craig standing there with a single rose, his goofy, adorable grin, smiling at me in a cocky manner because he knew what my answer would be...Yes...

Months before my girl Muls & I were at a University bar & I remember clear as day asking her Sweet Jesus, who is that white boy dancing- Its true my Craig could move out there...Now, I laugh when he dances but back in the day he was damn hot out there...Were going to be those parents when Noal & Pip ask about how we met, who then laugh hysterically at the thought of their dad picking up their mum based on his dance moves...But trust me my guy use to attract crowds...Most girls swarmed around him, our guy friends encouraged him & I knew I wanted him...Fast forward a few weeks & he was mine...Although he asked me to be his girl, drunk at a bar, I clearly told him to spruce it up & try asking again properly...And that brings us to 10 years ago at my front door...

I cant believe a decade has gone by...I knew right away with Craig that he was special...He has the kindest heart around, is loyal to a fault, is witty, chatty & makes me laugh more than anyone else in the world...I am beyond lucky to have found him & this kind of love...I would have been happy just being this wonderful boys friend but I get to be his partner & I am so grateful because my world is, what it is, because of him...I would go anywhere for him {Hello Cobalt, how are ya?}, do anything to make him smile {ask him about my new sweet mum dance moves} & truly believe he is the greatest guy out there...I am so bloody proud of the man he has become & all that he has accomplished in life...You've come a long way Parmesano's waiter...

Years ago when we were living in Dublin we took a trip to Portugal...SideNote: Amazing, beautiful country- more stories to follow & in the running for our retirement home}...Anyways,we were by a pool & this little tiny tank of a child {same body type as Noal} was cruising around & both Craig & I were in awe by how much the little boy resembled him...In that moment, I knew I wanted to have children with this beautiful man & thankfully have been blessed with these two Happy Souls...
Seeing Craig with Noal & Pip is something else- Hes playful, creative, kind, could work on his patience a bit but most importantly HAPPY...He has been the greatest lesson yet for me in having a Happy Soul- through ups & downs, worries & fears, he has always been my strength, my support & has had a Happy Soul...Thank you Craig for all that you teach me & the example you are to our hooligans...

All that being said- its obvious I pour my heart out into this blog & the people I love...So, when I told Craig about my idea for Letters for Pip being from other people, not just me like Noals, he agreed it would be something in time Pip would love...However, Craig loves fiercely but more privately than I do & although he would probably write Reid many letters in her life to put one out there publically wasnt ideal for him...I respected that & thought nothing of it & then I got this beautiful letter a few days ago...Pip& I are lucky gals to have such a beautiful man in our lives- And Noal is lucky to have such an amazing example growing up...
We love you Choo...You're still my favourite thing in the world & if I had to open the door again I would say yes...Always...

~Craig's Beautiful Letter to His Baby Girl~


To My daughter,
I must start this with an apology – When it comes to my family and the feelings and emotions that I have towards them my instinct has been one of privacy.  When your Mom shared with me this idea I backed away from making my private thoughts and wishes for you public ones.  I have come to learn that although this is a creative outlet for her, it comes from a place of pure love and is something only she could do.  This love for her children, in my mind, has not only inspired but has challenged people to look at their own family in a different way.  I love how brave she is – you will undoubtedly get that trait from her.
As you will find out I can be stubborn at times, but after some careful reflection this truly is something special.  I feel as though I need to be a part of it.  So I am sorry for being late to the dance, but when you dance as well as I do you can afford to let punctuality slide – you can ask your mother about that.
I think I have always been one of those guys who thought they had a good handle on life and the lessons it can teach you.  I carried on this way until the day your mother told me your brother was on his way.  For me it was a sobering moment that exposed me to an uncertainty mixed with pride and happiness.  My insecurities went from an ultimate high when I first held him back to normal within a month or two – that’s right it didn’t take me very long to think I knew it all….Again. 
When I found out that you were on the way, a day I like to call Shock n Awe, I found myself composed and calm.  It was nothing I hadn’t been through before….piece of cake right?
When we brought your brother home I remember my mind racing about all the things I would teach him over the course of his life.  When you came home with us the only thought that I can remember was thinking about all the things you would teach me.  This is a theme that has continued and something that I look forward to daily.  I can’t wait to see your interpretation of our world as you grow, I am sure it will continually change the way I think about things – as much if not more than you being in my life already has.
You will probably hear a lot of words like benchmark, spectrum, and milestone but I want you to keep this one thought close to you.  You will never care about where you are unless you remember how you got there.  Struggle, determination, and resilience build character and you, sweet thing, are full of just that.  I will always be right beside you to hold your hand or give you a boost in the event that you need it….but I know you’ll do just fine.
As you can tell by these letters your mother is a pretty special person – you will hear no different from me…..well maybe once in a while…usually when she is smothering everyone with “We should take a picture”.  She is easily the most beautiful person I know, this blog is only a small window into the size of her heart and just look at how many people she has touched.  The three of us are lucky to have her and she will be your biggest cheerleader throughout life.  If you get just half of her smile you will be one amazing lady.
I look forward to our journey……
I love you,
Dad

These Two Together are Killing me...

Watching Noal interact with Reid has been entertaining, touching & so special for me...When I found out I was pregnant {Noal was only 7 months old} amidst the panic & shock, one thing I was excited for was how close my kids would be...When I found out Reid had Down Syndrome one of the biggest things I grieved was Noal missing out on that close brother/sister relationship...As Ive come to realize that was a unnecessary thing to grieve...Yes, it might be different than the typical sibling relationship but Ive  always been one up for different...So, its fitting than that my two little happy souls will in turn teach me just how special a sibling relationship can be...When we first brought Reid home from the hospital we had lots of vistors between our families & I think Noal truly thought that Reid belonged to them...When he realized she was ours & staying & taking up his mums time he had a little period of adjustment- That usually meant, a bit more whiny, clingy & prone to tantis...I gave him extra loving, played the big brother/big helper card & even signed him up for gymnastics to have a little date with me away from Reid one morning a week...



Now, Noal seems deeply in love with his little sister {at times}...He usually wants to hold her, always wants to kiss her goodnight, & is protective of her when I pick him up from daycare...If other kids come over to see Reid, he runs over shouting Mine, Mine, Mine& Reid, Mine...When he first started saying Reeeed I just about died...Seeing the two of them together makes me so happy in my heart...


I know every mum thinks it & Craig makes fun of me pretty much every day but come on, my kids are bloody adorable...
 

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Does she know how to rock a pirate patch or what?

So, many of you have been asking for a Reid update...Here it is...

My baby girl is rocking...Literally- her eye healed much quicker than expected, she has a new lens in now that is allowing her to see & she is rocking wearing her little pirate patch...She only has to wear it half of her waking hours, {impossible to track/know what that is right?} & I've been decorating the patch to match her outfits when I can...Also you will note the patch is now on her other eye {her good one}- theory there is you patch the good eye so the brain learns to see using the bad eye...



The first week after her surgery was tiring...I had to put drops in her eye every 2 hours- so between that, nursing & taking care of Noal, this mumma was exhausted...The docs seem overly pleased with her progress but warn me we still have a long road ahead of us...All of the doctors, nurses, specialists, etc, since Reids birth have been so great & we are so thankful that we have moved to an area with all this right at our doorstop...I cant imagine going through what we have with Reid in the little remote town we use to live in- we would have had to travel so much & that added stress would have been a lot...

So, Reid really is doing awesome...And speaking of awesome..How beautiful are those Letters to Reid...She is going to cherish those so much when shes older...The letters are meant to show her how loved & special she is & in a way they have done that for me also...Some have wrote beautiful things about me & Craig and I just wanted to say thank you...Really...I hope that we can live up to what some of you wrote...I will cherish them like Reid will...I will also find strength & encouragement from them on days I need to & I will feel the love yall have for me & my little family...
 
So thank you....





P.S- On the note of awesome...My dog has got to be the best...Come on, right?






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