Hi Baby Boy. I love you.

To say yesterday was jam-packed is the understatement of the year. I know we are only 9 (now 10) days in, but I can't help thinking about how even the most insane days remind me so much of you. Once you graduated from the wretched infant carrier, you LOVED going from place-to-place and all of the excitement even the most ordinary days would bring!

I miss hearing your little voice in the back seat pointing out the color and make of every semi, "vroom vroom," taxi, truck, bus, "shoe shoe." I miss passing a police car and slowing down not to comply with the speed limit, but to make sure you could see it too. I miss the way you pointed your little finger and gasped right before you recreated your enthusiastic siren sound effect you had for every emergency vehicle.

I remember my sweet auntie being fearful that you didn't want to be dragged all over one of the national parks where we took you hiking. She even offered to let us drop you off at her house and watch you while we trekked the hundreds of miles we covered together. Your daddy, the planner of the family, might have had to scale back the laminated itinerary a bit so we could coordinate our hikes and longer voyages in the car with your nap time, but we had such an incredible family trip with you.

You laughed as you played in the ocean still fully dressed, and were amused when a wave chased you back toward the shore. You rode on our backs in your friend, Jack's hiking backpack (though you mostly preferred Mommy get the extra workout), and picked leaves bigger than your head. You peeked down through huge, mystical clouds and saw cities that looked like toys. You fed the ducks for the first time, and found your own walking sticks and mud. You threw rocks into the lakes and clapped and giggled at yourself in delight. You made your own bird calls that echoed through the trees and amused the other park visitors wondering what kind of animal made that strange noise.

Whether is was a typical car ride to "2s" (AKA the 2-year-old daycare class), dancing to a band on Mommy's race day, or going to see your friends for a play date on the weekends, you always managed to fill your life and ours so full of love. My mind still can't comprehend both the magnitude of not having you here or how it was that you were able to completely win over literally EVERY SINGLE PERSON YOU MET during your 2 years, 2 months, and a small portion of your 23rd day. How is that even possible? They say you can't please everyone, but Caleb Lennon, you did! Even people who didn't like children had to admit that they thought you were pretty cute. Secretly, I think they also felt the love you coated them with the instant they looked into your beautiful, blue eyes. You were special and you always will be.

So, Baby Boy. We are still trying to be like you and share a layer of your magical, perfect love. We celebrate the day of the month you were born and even when it is a sprint, it is always worth it.

I hope Daddy and I made you proud yesterday.

Mommy knows sometimes she has more words than you probably have patience, so I will include more specifics about our first "Nice on the 9th" day of 2018 in each picture grouping.

I love you. I always will.

You will always be my greatest adventure, Caleb Baby. Even if I live to be 100, you will have crammed every second of every day I have left here with more love than I ever knew could overflow my heart.

One day.

Love,

Mommy
XOXOXOXOX

#calebeffect
#benice
#NiceOnThe9th
#grief
#ChildLoss
#RAK
#ThisLittleLightOfMineImGonnaLetHimShine


   
  
   
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    Hi Baby Boy. Mommy met the day early enough to see this beautiful sunrise. I watched a fun-loving little cutie so her mommy, a small-business owner, could rock a bridal event. Look how pretty her flowers are! You would have had so much fun playing outside with this little athlete and making impromptu artwork from things we found in the yard. I'm sure now you are seeing nature's paintbrush in ways we could never imagine.   I love you, Baby Boy. — with  Sarah A. Toy .

Hi Baby Boy. Mommy met the day early enough to see this beautiful sunrise. I watched a fun-loving little cutie so her mommy, a small-business owner, could rock a bridal event. Look how pretty her flowers are! You would have had so much fun playing outside with this little athlete and making impromptu artwork from things we found in the yard. I'm sure now you are seeing nature's paintbrush in ways we could never imagine. 

I love you, Baby Boy. — with Sarah A. Toy.


   
  
   
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    Hi, Baby. After playing with our sweet friend for the first half of the day, Daddy and I went to a place called Infant Crisis Services. Our friend, Scott Magnetti, at Dollar General helped us collect toys for this months' "Nice on the 9th," so we gave the ones for kids 4 and under to this really wonderful place, and saved the other toys for Calm Waters. Daddy and I also threw in a few things we thought they could use as well. This month, there was also a secret contributor who likes this organization, so the diapers we delivered are from them. We will be able to do more with their donation than just this, though, so stay tuned for more. Scroll down and I will tell you more about this place. — with  Scott Magnetti ,  Ken Toey ,  Infant Crisis Services  and  Dollar General .

Hi, Baby. After playing with our sweet friend for the first half of the day, Daddy and I went to a place called Infant Crisis Services. Our friend, Scott Magnetti, at Dollar General helped us collect toys for this months' "Nice on the 9th," so we gave the ones for kids 4 and under to this really wonderful place, and saved the other toys for Calm Waters. Daddy and I also threw in a few things we thought they could use as well. This month, there was also a secret contributor who likes this organization, so the diapers we delivered are from them. We will be able to do more with their donation than just this, though, so stay tuned for more. Scroll down and I will tell you more about this place. — with Scott MagnettiKen ToeyInfant Crisis Services and Dollar General.

  
 
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    So, Baby. As I was saying, Infant Crisis Services gives families things like diapers, food and formula. These items are their main mission, but nice people also help them give kids and their families other items like clothes, sippy cups, toys, bottles, and baby soap. Can you imagine having to sit in a dirty diaper because you didn't have enough money to buy more?   
  
  
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
  
  
  
  
  
    :( Want to know more about this charity? Keep scrolling to the next image. — with  Infant Crisis Services .

So, Baby. As I was saying, Infant Crisis Services gives families things like diapers, food and formula. These items are their main mission, but nice people also help them give kids and their families other items like clothes, sippy cups, toys, bottles, and baby soap. Can you imagine having to sit in a dirty diaper because you didn't have enough money to buy more? :( Want to know more about this charity? Keep scrolling to the next image. — with Infant Crisis Services.

   
  
   
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    Little Man, you were fond of the word "more" when eating, but many in our community won't be able to give their kids enough to eat. Many also don't have a washing machine so it is too expensive for them to use cloth the way we were able to save money. The Infant Crisis Center has been able to expand their mission and they even have a section with gallons of milk, dozens of eggs, and even carrots and potatoes! We agree. "No baby should go hungry." — with  Scott Magnetti  and  Dollar General .

Little Man, you were fond of the word "more" when eating, but many in our community won't be able to give their kids enough to eat. Many also don't have a washing machine so it is too expensive for them to use cloth the way we were able to save money. The Infant Crisis Center has been able to expand their mission and they even have a section with gallons of milk, dozens of eggs, and even carrots and potatoes! We agree. "No baby should go hungry." — with Scott Magnetti and Dollar General.


   
  
   
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    Mommy and Daddy's next stop was to Calm Waters. This is a place where people like us could go because we are very sad that you aren't here with us anymore. You didn't have any siblings, but Mommy and Daddy feel especially heartbroken for some of your new friends' families who leave behind brothers and sisters, or sons and daughters. — with  Scott Magnetti ,  Ken Toey ,  Calm Waters Center for Children and Families  and  Dollar General .

Mommy and Daddy's next stop was to Calm Waters. This is a place where people like us could go because we are very sad that you aren't here with us anymore. You didn't have any siblings, but Mommy and Daddy feel especially heartbroken for some of your new friends' families who leave behind brothers and sisters, or sons and daughters. — with Scott MagnettiKen ToeyCalm Waters Center for Children and Families and Dollar General.

   
  
   
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    One of the things they do here is to have families write messages about how they feel after they lose someone. Calm Waters also takes good care of people whose relationship has changed because of divorce. The one that really made Mommy sad was the person who wrote about wanting to go fishing. That's something Mommy wanted to do with you, too. — with  Calm Waters Center for Children and Families .

One of the things they do here is to have families write messages about how they feel after they lose someone. Calm Waters also takes good care of people whose relationship has changed because of divorce. The one that really made Mommy sad was the person who wrote about wanting to go fishing. That's something Mommy wanted to do with you, too. — with Calm Waters Center for Children and Families.

   
  
   
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    Baby Bear, going through adult-sized issues like losing a brother or sister or having to move out of your house because your parents don't get along anymore are not fun. Those things are really hard even for big people, but can be very confusing for someone small. Mommy lost her daddy when she was 14 so she understands how it feels when something like this happens. One of the things they do here is to decorate a shoe box like you see in the picture on the bottom right and fill it full of memories of the life they used to have. I think you would agree that this group needed some toys to play with, so once again, with the help of our buddy, Scott, we brought some fun things to share!— with  Scott Magnetti ,  Ken Toey  and  Dollar General .

Baby Bear, going through adult-sized issues like losing a brother or sister or having to move out of your house because your parents don't get along anymore are not fun. Those things are really hard even for big people, but can be very confusing for someone small. Mommy lost her daddy when she was 14 so she understands how it feels when something like this happens. One of the things they do here is to decorate a shoe box like you see in the picture on the bottom right and fill it full of memories of the life they used to have. I think you would agree that this group needed some toys to play with, so once again, with the help of our buddy, Scott, we brought some fun things to share!— with Scott MagnettiKen Toey and Dollar General.


   
  
   
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    Last, but certainly not least is that you have a cousin, Annalysa Longworth, who lives in Puerto Rico. She and her boyfriend survived a really scary hurricane! They were left in the dark until a charity called "Watts of Love" showed up. Read about it here.  https://www.rd.com/true-stories/inspiring/lives-changed-by-charitable-gifts/   We thought it would be appropriate to share the most radiant light and life we have ever seen with this part of our country. I have never met this cousin, but I hope just like you have shown us, that she feels your love even when she can't see you.   I love you, Baby Boy. Keep shining your rays of love on us.   One day.  Love, Mommy XOXOXOXOX   — with  Lili Oller ,  Annalysa Longworth and  Watts of Love .

Last, but certainly not least is that you have a cousin, Annalysa Longworth, who lives in Puerto Rico. She and her boyfriend survived a really scary hurricane! They were left in the dark until a charity called "Watts of Love" showed up. Read about it here. https://www.rd.com/true-stories/inspiring/lives-changed-by-charitable-gifts/

We thought it would be appropriate to share the most radiant light and life we have ever seen with this part of our country. I have never met this cousin, but I hope just like you have shown us, that she feels your love even when she can't see you. 

I love you, Baby Boy. Keep shining your rays of love on us. 

One day.

Love, Mommy
XOXOXOXOX

 — with Lili OllerAnnalysa Longworthand Watts of Love.

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