Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Trace's Tree

He who plants a tree
Plants hope.

--Lucy Larcom

Trace's tree is here!

We picked it out last weekend at our favorite tree farm and our tree guy brought it over the day after Thanksgiving. It is Sienna Glen maple and should look like this in the fall:

The leaves will be an orange red and so far it is the biggest tree in our yard so I think it will be a nice addition to our landscape. I'm happy he was able to bring us a maple tree because they were so beautiful in October when we lost Trace. I mentioned how beautiful they were this year when we were picking it out and our tree guy said it was an exceptional year for maple trees...everything was a perfect combination to make them look so pretty.

We are excited to see it in the spring and hopefully it will be leafed out by Trace's birthday in May. I have lots of plans for more things to plant in the spring as we have many generous gifts to our favorite nursery. I am thinking about doing a rose garden or a butterfly garden but I'm just not sure yet.

Our neighbor was over the day and she said she loved the new tree and was glad we planted it but to also think about doing other things in remembrance of Trace just in case we would ever leave this house. We are planning on living here forever but the Lord knows we can't predict his plan for us so for now I'm thinking of other places where we could possibly plant a tree to remember Trace. Does anyone have any good ideas? I'm thinking our local park we love to visit or maybe one on the public access by our pond. It is so hard to know.

It seems like such a little thing to do but also like a big thing at the same time. It is a another marker in our life, a reminder that Trace was here. I hope we can watch it grow big and strong through the years and changing seasons and think of our little boy.

He who plants a tree
Plants a joy
Plants a comfort that will never cloy;
Every day a fresh reality,
Beautiful and strong.

--Lucy Larcom, "Plant a Tree"

Friday, November 25, 2011



For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food,
For love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.

--Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

I spent much of Thanksgiving trying to pretend that it wasn't any special day and that I wasn't without my precious baby boy. I thought of him all day and how thankful we are for being blessed with him.

Michael and I did a quick trip to our favorite park in the morning and I spent some time just reflecting and being thankful. Being thankful for the beautiful weather and the sunshine on my face.

Being thankful for my awesome little boy and his joyous spirit.

Being thankful for visions of peace and protective mommy elk.
(she later charged at the fence because we were too close to her sweet baby--yikes!)

....and being thankful for self portraits that graciously auto focus on the rock instead of me. :o)
We had a great meal at our friend's house to celebrate the holiday. Everything was so awesome and I felt so guilty I didn't cook anything.

Michael was so happy to have a friend just his age to hang with for the afternoon. They were so funny together running around with their toys and pushing their noses up to the tv.

It was a beautiful fall day. 60 degrees and sunny on Thanksgiving? I'll take it.

We are thankful for many things.

I hope your holiday was full of peace of love.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


I was browsing through my photo collection last night and I found some great photos of Michael when he was the same age as Trace. I had done this before and I thought they actually looked pretty similar when they were newborns but as Trace got older, I think he started to look a lot different. Check this out:

Isn't that funny? I like how they are both wearing a little football shirt.

Next, I found this photo of them both blowing raspberries.

I love the chubby baby cheeks!

Finally, a little side by side of the boys at their four month appointment:

It is really funny to me how different they look from each other. I think Trace would have been a really good looking guy, just like his brother. But I think they would have also looked a lot different. It is so sad for me to think about what they would have been like as brothers together and it is just like a big hole in my imagination. I try and imagine Trace being there in different situations and then I have to remind myself that no, he won't be there.

I often think about what it is like in heaven for Trace and I think other people who have lost babies probably can relate. I think about it all the time. Will Trace still be a baby in heaven? Is there a concept of time in heaven? Days and years? It is just so hard for me to come to realization that these are the only photos I will have of more. Are there cameras in heaven? Because I will need to do a lot of catching up. :o)

Speaking of heaven, every night before I tuck Michael in we say our prayers. At the end I always say "God Bless baby Trace in heaven". The past few nights after the prayer Michael has said that "Trace is bye bye". It just melts my heart every time and I break down crying. Just hearing Michael say his name makes me so sad. I just want Michael to know that Trace loved him too and he was a part of our family. I'm excited (& sad) to keep sharing Trace's story with Michael as he grows older.

Here's one more of my goofy guy before I get started on my day:

Thanks for sharing a few moments with me! ---Rose

Monday, November 21, 2011

Cyclones' Epic Win!

On Friday night, Cyclones had the biggest win in school history. We beat the number two ranked Oklahoma State Cowboys.
And it.....was.....AWESOME!!!

(photo source)

Seriously, it was a little unbelievable. I was pretty much in shock the entire game and in disbelief that it was actually happening, waiting for something to go wrong. Some things did go wrong but lots of things went right and we pulled out a victory in double overtime.

(photo source)

(I'm including this photo of the on-side kick because I was in the bathroom and missed it...what!?)

The stadium was wild. After regulation time was over and the score was tied, Jack Trice was so loud! It felt good to feel excited about something. It felt good to have hope...even if it was just the silly hope that your football team wins a big game.

(It also felt good to be the top story on Sports Center!)

Even when the stadium was so loud and rockin', I just so sad inside because I thought how could this be have the same spot where I stood just a few months earlier with my favorite little guy? How could life change that much in one football season? It may be a little weird to get so emotional over a football game but honestly.... it gives me a little hope that good things can still happen in this world. :o)

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Our Days

I thought I would just share some photos from our ordinary days around here. We are up to absolutely nothing exciting but I feel like that is what we need right now.

Eating donuts (do-dos) with grandma early on Saturday morning before the ISU game. A friend dropped off a little meal care package for me with a six pack of Sam Adams beer and three big donuts with Cyclone sprinkles. It was the best!

We've also been watching entirely too much TV and sometimes even taking naps on the couch. I was selected to do the Nielsen ratings this past week and it was embarrassing to record what I actually watch. Essentially all the shows watched in this house are on three different channels: PBS (kids), Bravo, and HBO.

Michael has really been having fun drawing lately and he just looked so cute that I had to get my camera out.

His favorite things to draw are: hockey balls, hockey sticks, dad playing hockey, daddy's boat, suns, and moons. I'm not sure where this whole hockey obsession is coming from, but I'm sure its due to many hours of Scott's grooming. He got Michael this little hockey goal set and Michael loves it. He loves it so much now that any ball is now a hockey ball, and any sport on TV is hockey, and anyone playing hockey is Daddy. Lord, help me. Can I really deal with a lifetime of two sets of smelly hockey gear in my house??

He loves to draw and talk about what he is drawing and I think it is just so cute. He is getting so smart.

Its hard to find things that Michael likes to eat that are also easy for me to give him (hopefully this is temporary and soon I will unlock some magic healthy recipes and energy to make them) but for now he's really been liking those little drinkable yogurt things. We call it a milkshake and he really goes for it.

He just looks so grown up and handsome to me sometimes. He is getting so smart and starting to put all the pieces in the world around him together. The other day when I was looking at Trace's photo book, Michael ran and got some prints of Trace that were sitting out on the counter because he knew that those pictures of Trace needed to go in the book with the other pictures. He also loves to find pairs of his toys and then show me how he has two of them. "Two trucks, two cows, two boats".

Michael is such a joy to us and we love him so much. Sometimes it is just too hard to think about what could have been with Michael and Trace. I think they would have had lots of fun growing up together.

So that's pretty much what we've been up to here....trying to hang in there and take each day as it comes.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

It's here:

The product of many hours and tears arrived in the mail yesterday:

It was Trace's memory album!

I ordered a 12x12 book from using a Groupon that I had purchased before we lost Trace. When I bought the Groupon I thought I would use it to make some gifts or something else because I am trying to think of a way to better organize the boys' photos rather than yearly books (more like a scrapbook type book, with full printed photo pages that you can keep adding to or rearrange).

Little did I know at the time that I would be using the credit to make my baby's only album. It is beautiful and I love every photo but it just makes me so sad to think that this is all we got: one stupid photo book instead of a lifetime of memories.

I hate myself for even saying things like that. I know there are so many mommies who never got to see their baby's faces let alone have four months with them. still sucks.

I'm glad I got the photo book done. I love having something tangible that I can hold in my hands, feel with my fingers and carry from room to room. Working on it was a healing experience- just to know that he was here, he was ours and we loved him.

I also bought supplies for a more traditional scrapbook for Trace where I can keep some items that are not photos. It will be nice. I want to get parts of my blog published somewhere but I am having a hard time thinking about how I want to do it. I thought I could print entries from Trace's birth until his death but then I thought....Trace's story is so much more than just the four months he was with us. It started before he was born and I don't think it is over yet. I still have more to tell...he still has more to share with us.

For you created my inmost being;
You knit me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
When I was made in the secret place.
When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,
Your eyes saw my unformed body.
All the days ordained for me
Were written in your book
Before one of them came to be.

- Psalm 139: 13-16


Thank you all again for all your wonderful comments. You have no idea how much they mean to me. It has been hard for me to reply because it is hard for me to put into words how I'm feeling some days.

Some days have been okay, but I have not been feeling the best this week. I've been trying to get back into some of my former activities but it has been adding stress that just seems to be multiplying to unhealthy levels. It is hard to try and figure out what my new normal is and find the balance between being a hermit locked up in my house and being out and about all the time. Please pray for peace and healing. :o)

with much love...Rose

Friday, November 11, 2011

Trace's name

We had a hard time thinking of a name for our sweet boy. We didn't actually consider the name Trace as contender until right before he was born. I told Scott that when the baby was born he could just say his name right when they asked us, which is usually right after you deliver. He took my passing comment to heart and as soon as I was wheeled to the recovery room, Scott named our new son. Trace it was, even though there wasn't a lot of discussion about it and I was a little surprised.

"That's really his name?", I thought. I didn't even know anyone named Trace.
Over time it seemed to be a perfect fit for our little boy and I couldn't have imagined a name more perfect.

I wanted to share some meanings of the word trace with you, as our pastor shared with us during Trace's memorial service. These words are a comfort to me...they are so perfect and speak right to my heart.


A mark, impression, or visible appearance of anything left when the thing itself no longer exists.

A mark left by anything passing; a track; a path; a course; a footprint; a vestige.

To follow by some mark that has been left by a person or thing which has preceded.


Dear sweet Trace,

We are so blessed you have left your mark on our lives and our hearts.
Thank you for leaving a path for us to follow in our lives.
We love you.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Where to even start? This is a question I've been asking myself every day for the past month....where to begin? What do I do now? How am I going to get through these moments, through today, through the rest of my life?

So I guess I'll just start somewhere...

We lost Trace on October 10th.

I went to grab him to feed him early in the morning and I knew something was wrong as soon as I opened the door to the room and saw him in his bed.

He was gone. He died in his sleep.

He was four months old.

We miss him so much every day. Things are not the same without him in our lives.

I miss his quick smile, his chubby cheeks, the joy in his heart, and the light in his eyes.

I don't know if this will get any easier but I feel like I needed to say something...just to put my story out there. I used to feel like bad things like this never really happened to people, at least not to people in my world. Now I know.
Now I know what it means to be sad, to be lost. I know that there are guarantees in this life. I am forever changed and my world will never be the same.

But I also know that God is bigger than death and I know Trace is in heaven.
I believe it with all my heart. If there is one thing I know for sure, it is that Trace is safe in God's arms and free from the trials and pain of this world. I feel Trace's spirit and even though my heart hurts I still have a piece of Trace in it.

Instead of having him in my arms, I now carry him in my heart.


Revelation 21:4
He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away."


Family and friends,

Thank you so much.

I feel like I can not thank you enough. You have blessed me and humbled my heart. I'm not sure how I will ever repay you all but please rest assured if the need ever arises.....I will be on your front step as quick as I can with a lasagna and bottle of wine in hand. :o)

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