Sunday, June 30, 2013


I am a pretty organized person. I like to see order in things. I was a secretary all through college. I had really nice looking files. In all my jobs. I've always made things orderly. I loved taking unorganized chaos and bringing some sense of order to it. It's part of the reason why I could roam Staples and swoon over labels and file folders. It's also part of the reason I have way too many office supplies for an unemployed person.

Enter in my husband. That should be a transition sentence for "I married the opposite, he's a complete slob" but it's not. Greg is pretty similar to me. His files might not look as nice but he is one detailed, organized guy. It's in his nature for sure. We found a notebook he kept through college listing all his expenses and gifts. He writes incredibly small and he is not a spender so it all fit in one steno notepad. He also kept every pay stub through college. How many guys in college are organized and care enough to do that?!

So us two crazy people get married. And we file EVERYTHING. I remember a few years after moving to SC, we did purge some of our bills from living in ND. But every water bill we've ever had living here in the last six years? Filed. Every statement. Filed. Every user manual. Filed. In fact, up until a few months ago, we actually kept most every receipt we received. We used to input all that info (oh dear) but now we just let a computer do that work. We like to have complete records. I know you are calling us nerds right now. I accept that.

Well, all this was fine and dandy. We had a filing cabinet. Granted, it was getting a little full. But now that filling cabinet needs to find it's way in our attic so our little boy can take over that closet space. So it was time. It was time to purge and let go of too many organized, but unnecessary items. And we did it! We went through loads of files and got rid of anything not needed. We kept only the important stuff.

And I got to make new labels. Typed out. They look nice. You're jealous. I know.

I wish I could show you photos of Eli's new room since my goal was to have it ready for him to move in the first of July. But we still have a little work to do to get ready for the transition. But we are close! The files were one of the last declutter steps. The sooner Eli gets settled means the sooner we can get the baby room ready for a sweet little girl again. I'm 24 weeks now so prepared we must get!


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Berry Cute.

Last week Eli and I were at the mall getting a few errands run, riding the carousal, you know, important stuff. I was trying to make it quick because Eli shopping for long periods of time is a bad idea. We were strolling by Gymboree and I saw some sale bins. They just beckon me. I went to the girl side (happy sigh) and found this hat. It was 99 cents. I wanted to cry I was so excited to have a reason to buy it. We promptly paid and left because 1. I didn't want to have a screaming kid in the store and 2. I didn't want to buy everything in sight.

He found it today and said "baby sister hat" and I asked him if he wanted to try it on. He was entertained for a few minutes!

What a fun day it will be putting her in this hat for the first time. I can't wait to show you that photo!


Saturday, June 22, 2013

Third Time Naming.

We have only talked about names for this dear baby girl a handful of times. I think about it often though. Yet no decision has been made. Not even close.

Not surprised? You may recall me bemoaning about all my requirements for a name back in the day when we were figuring out what to name Maelee. We didn't decide until we knew she was gone and I was in labor. But it was perfect for her and for the situation.

With Eli, it was a gift that Greg thought of the name, we loved the meaning and there was so much confirmation because of how his name was found in Maelee's name. It just was so fitting.

I want the same thing to happen with this girl. The same confirmation. The same ah ha! moment where we just know. But so far, that hasn't happened.

Part of it is due to wanting to honor Maelee in the name. I figured out I can't have "Maelee Linn" be this girl's middle name. I just can't. Our niece born five months after Maelee is Ava Maelee Linn and I love that. But her last name is not Kasowski. I just don't think I can have Maelee's whole, complete, full name in this girl's name. Maelee Linn Kasowski. Let's say we name this girl Sally. Sally Maelee Linn Kasowski. I can't do it. I can't have all of Maelee's name there. Is that odd?

My sweet husband looked at me and said "that's okay" when I was processing all this. He also voiced my desire to have a little girl with the middle name Linn. He knows.We could just do "Maelee" or "Mae" and no Linn. But there's a big part of me that wants that little girl with my middle name, for the heritage that goes with it, for all that it means, Maelee included. I love love love love love the name Maelee. Love it. More than Linn, really. But I don't think I want that for this girl's middle name (but cousins? most definitely!).

So you know what that means? This little girl will most likely have the middle name "Linn". Just like me. And Maelee. And my mom and sister and nieces.

But that leaves the more important and much used first name still unknown!

We have a few ideas. We still have our list from when we were pregnant with Maelee, though I'm unsure about using those. I haven't spent hours looking or researching or googling. Yet. Perhaps you have the perfect name for our dear girl, eh? An idea for us, a name that seems fitting. Perhaps one that reminds you of Maelee or uses part of her name. Perhaps a name that has a super awesome meaning. Send your suggestions our way (email, text, comment) and we may just add your thoughts to our list!


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Beyond 30.

Birthdays were way more fun when you got to have your friends over for a backyard party with the slip-in-slide and kiddie pool and races around the apple trees. And yummy food mom made. 

Sigh. Those were the days.

My day was still nice. But not I-just-turned-seven nice.

I woke up to my baby girl moving (my absolute favorite!) and my husband going to take care of my boy so I could sleep more (okay, he does this most every day regardless if it's my birthday!). 

Eli has been at camp this week. 9 to Noon for three days. A baby loss friend of mine is in charge of it, at a local gymnastics cheer place. When she advertised it awhile back, I noticed the dates and thought "that would be a nice birthday present for me!" Three mornings to myself! Plus Eli gets to interact with other kiddos without mama around, a very good experience for him. He's been doing great which is awesome!

My plan was to come home and have some me-time while I ate a muffin from Dunkin Donuts. But when I got home with my muffin today, it was hard as a rock. Birthday breakfast FAIL! But my friend Cindy happened to stop by to bring me a skor bar (yum! a fav!) and offered to go exchange it for me. Friend WIN! So I did get to sit and read and compute in complete silence while eating a muffin like planned. Oh yeah!

The other bummer of my day is this stupid cold I've had for five days. It's not bad, just annoying most especially at night. Sadly, Greg woke up this morning with an itchy throat. Uh-oh. It's not bad, but still. Sickness should leave your vicinity on birthdays. It just should.

My boys gifted me with certificate for a prenatal massage (oh that's so happening one hot day in August when I feel like a hippo). And I got lovely cards and messages and gifts from family and friends. I am grateful to be loved so.

Greg had some meetings that lasted 'til 7 so Eli and I went shopping. Eli was in a great, silly mood most of the day, which was a gift in itself! See:

That could have been due to the fact he got a sucker earlier in the day AND I let him hold the thing (he's never gotten full-reign on a sucker before). 

-another year older Heather

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Someone Special.

Greg is an Ah-Mazing Daddy. Such a gift to me and to our kids. And what a joy to get to see him parent this boy.

From first wake up on, Daddy can be counted on for fun.
And all around silliness.
We went frisbee golfing today. This shot makes it look like Eli actually knows what he is doing.

And instead of walking around in the grass path, he lets Eli walk right through this little rocky, super muddy path.

But that's what good dads do!

I got to talk to my dad on the phone tonight, too. Such a great daddy to this girl, I always always always knew I was loved. And I married a stellar guy who came from a solidly awesome dad. Eli has some great men figures in his heritage. Thank you Lord!


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Shoulda Had Paper.

Can you see the evidence of Eli's handiwork on the couch?

And there's some baby girl bump showing off too. 


Sunday, June 9, 2013

Marker Babies.

I have started using this term though I have no idea if I heard it from someone, read it, or made it up myself. But "marker babies" is a term I sadly have a use for. A marker baby is a child that is born around the time you had a loss or possibly born when your baby was due, if you had an early loss. They are the babies that represent where your child should be if he/she/they were living.

There are a few babies born around the time that Maelee died that are "marker babies" for us. Some are harder than others to see or hear about. I have no idea why. Sometimes how close you are with the parents determines how tough it is to be around the marker child. Maybe sharing a pregnancy with a friend step-by-step but with wildly different outcomes. Or perhaps gender or similar hair color of their baby, etc. I suppose you don't get to pick exactly why a certain child makes your heart ache, they just do. Obviously we are glad these babies exist and that their parents did not experience what we did. There's just a weird connection between your heart and a marker baby.

That said, one of the fears I have with this pregnancy is we now know loads and loads of pregnant people! Like, seriously many people have been busy. And blessed. But to me, my experience, if I'm to put a voice to my fears, is that means more possible "marker babies" for us. And that is hard to swallow.

I remember too well what it was like hearing so-and-so had their child alive while I wept with sorrow over Maelee. I don't want to do that again. Most closely connected to us this go round are Greg's sister and his cousin, due within days of each other with their first children, girls, due the first week in September (oh that we would get to see these girl cousin cousins together! what joy!). And I can count another nine or maybe more pregnant ladies, some close, some not, due within September/October. I want to be excited and thrilled for these kiddos instead of knowing them only as marker babies. And I don't want their parents to experience what we did/do either.

So we continue to hope that each of these precious babies will make his or her appearance alive and healthy and pray to that end. God knows.


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

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Week Pics.

I'm a big fan of June. I just think it's a fabulous month. If I knew baby girl was full-term right now, I'd love nothing more than to have a June girl because I happen to think it's the best month for a birthday. (Of course, of course, any time a baby is born alive is a flippin' miracle and is therefore a great day for a birthday. Still, I'm allowed to have a bias).

So how about some Eli photos from our first week in June?

Mama's boy.

He wanted to wear a hat so I broke out this one the Lipperts gave him, then decided he could go full-on Twins that day. Doesn't he just look like a big boy?
Chillin' out with his best bud, Caleb.
Isn't this just adorable?
I give Eli my phone when I'm in a store sometimes. As you can see, I was shopping in the girls section (YAY!) and he found himself a place to plop down. Perhaps he realizes he will spend many hours doing this in the future.
Playing in the rain fun!
I checked Greg's phone for photos to put on here from the week but all he has are six videos he took (and if it were easy to upload those here I would). But to prove Eli loves spending time with his daddy, here's a screen shot:

Just a screen shot, but perhaps I'll get a video on here soon.
Today we got to be a part of a fun surprise 30th birthday party for our friend Sidni. It was loads of fun... no one does surprises anymore. And tonight is date night! So all in all, a very nice first week of June.


Wednesday, June 5, 2013


My revelation tonight: I live linguistically conflicted.

These maps are awesome (they describe so much of why it took me a few years to be acclimated 'round here). I feel I have a story for every single one. Even the bubbler (my old boss was from Wisconsin).

Kudos to that statistics student and linguistic prof. Check it out and have a laugh as you realize your regional biases.


Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Two Gregs.

This is just to cute not to share. I was out last week and Eli and Greg were sitting on the couch. Eli looks at Greg and says "Greg" (he has heard me say it enough). Then Eli says "one Greg" as he points to Greg and then points to himself and says "Two Greg".

So even though the photo yesterday makes Eli seem to be my mini-me, in reality he thinks he's Greg's mini me.

I love my Gregs. 


Monday, June 3, 2013

Mini Me.

I was going through a pile of old photos and came across this one. For a millisecond I thought it was Eli. Then realized that's my sister and therefore, that chubby white face staring out was indeed me. My poor son.


UPDATE: Eli is the spitting image of Greg in some of his baby photos so I suppose the logical conclusion is that Greg and I look alike. Hum. 

Sunday, June 2, 2013


Our friends who became our friends after they lost their son last July are gearing up for his first heavenly birthday. Nathaniel James was born around 32 weeks July 2, 2012. He had trisonomy-18 which is a genetic disorder that didn't allow him to live beyond a few hours. We grieve with his parents heavily and have tried to help them walk this road the past year. We are grateful for Maelee and Nathaniel because that means we got to be friends... it seems some of my dearest friends are people I wish I never had to know.

His parents, Jeremy and Sidni, have been inspired to do something sweet in honor of him for his birthday. They are asking folks to do something in Nathaniel's memory, to give of themselves in some way, and then tell them about it on his birthday this year. I think this is fabulous for many reasons, one of which is it will help them get through that super tough milestone day with joy.

If you are interested in making cookies for someone, volunteering, buying someone a meal, donating to a cause, making an effort to do good, etc, etc, and you want to do it in honor of one sweet little boy who lives in heaven... then this is your chance! You can write me a message and I can post it to Sidni on Nathaniel's birthday. You have exactly one month to do/give/be your gift.

Nathaniel's parents.
And here is Sidni last week with Eli at the lake. Eli completely adores her (he even took his first steps to her). She cuddles him and gives him whatever he wants (like cookies with insane amounts of frosting), so it makes sense, but I often think it's cause he just knows she needs little boy lovin' since her boy is in heaven.


Here's Sidni's explanation on Nathaniel's gift day:

“Every good and perfect gift is from above.” James 1:17

It has almost been a year since Nathaniel was born. Although he was only with us for a short time, Nathaniel was an incredible gift from the Lord, and we hope to celebrate him on his first birthday. We miss him every day but rejoice that we will see him again. His short life forever changed and blessed us, and it is in that spirit that we want to honor his memory. We want to honor him, and the Lord, by asking you to do/be a gift in his memory. This gift can be any type: your time, your energy, your talents, etc. Please do something that will, like Nathaniel’s life, leave an impact for eternity. Spend some time volunteering, send a care package to a missionary, write an encouraging note to your parents, prepare dinner for an elderly neighbor….anything the Lord leads you to do! Please know it doesn’t have to be an extravagant gesture. We just ask that while you give, you honor our little boy by thanking God for him. We are posting this early to give you all plenty of time to think of and give your gift before his birthday! On the second of July, please reply to this note and share how you gave. It will be such comfort to Jeremy and I to see that others are not only missing Nathaniel with us, but also honoring the Lord as they remember him.