Beautiful Souls

Beautiful Souls
Beautiful Souls of Amoeba Awareness

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Part 17~ Days turned to weeks

Before this weeks post, I want to make sure everyone is aware of our event in a few weeks to raise awareness for Amoebic Meningitis. I am attaching the flyer here. You can get tickets by going to our website, click on events, Awareness Rocks and there is a drop down menu there to buy tickets. You can also become a title sponsor on this page. Space at the venue is limited, so hurry and buy your tickets in advance! GB Leighton will be the entertainment, and they are........ AWESOME !  We are also still in need of items for our silent auction as well as bigger ticket items for our end of the night raffle. Thanks to all that have contributed and that are coming out to the event!

Back to 2008~
It is amazing how the days start to turn to weeks. We paid off the funeral expenses and spent time designing Hailee's headstone for the cemetery, and got that ordered. Our goal was to have it in before the winter. We also ordered and received the keepsake jewelery. Justin a cross necklace with some of Hailee's ashes in it, Marcus a thumbprint necklace, Chad ordered both a thumbprint necklace and a urn necklace, and I ordered a heart shaped necklace with ashes and a thumbprint ring. These items would prove extremely helpful to us in the weeks and months ahead.

Exactly 4 weeks after her death, we faced going through Hailee's 12th birthday without her. It came up very quickly as the days all blended together. My wonderful co-workers planned something very special for Hailee's birthday. There would be a tree planting, a butterfly release and music for those that I worked with and our family. Following that, we would go to the cemetery and out to dinner.

Her birthday was a very nice day. Slightly partly cloudy in the morning. I worked that day in the morning, of course my mind was elsewhere. I was excited and nervous for the tree planting. Finally, at about 2pm, the event started. My co-workers presented me with a framed poem, and played some music while one of them sang. Pastor Ron Gerl, from Parmly, shared prayers and thoughts. During the short ceremony, it stated to rain.... pour rain actually. Some umbrellas came out, while other just stood and let the rain run down on them. The tree was a flowering crab, and ironically the name of the tree was "Royal Raindrop". How fitting.

We went inside after and greeted and talked with people and had a few refreshments. It was really beautiful and nice to gather with people again. After that, we went to the cemetery to visit Hailee, which was hard because of course her headstone was not in yet. We made the best of it. Then, we went to dinner with a group. Someone had been thoughtful and brought a birthday cake. :) We sang her Happy Birthday.

It was also right around this time that we began talking about the next big change in our life. My Grandma Carolyn, as I mentioned in a previous post, was now living in the Assisted Living at Parmly. Her home had been vacant for about 2 years. My family was looking for someone who might what to stay at the house for the winter and their only expense would be to pay the heat and electricity. When I heard about this, my mind immediately went into action. It had been a dream of both Chad and I to someday live on the property I grew up on. I wondered... should we raise our hands and stay the winter? It was getting increasingly hard to stay in our house. Not so much that Hailee's room was there but more so that we saw and heard her friends playing and riding by. We saw the bus go by and not drop her off. We began to feel like we might not stay there. Although I could not imagine leaving the house, I became excited about the idea of moving home to my grandparents farm. (By the way, my parents live in the property next door, so I literally grew up on this property).

The only hard part was that I didn't want to just stay at the farm for the winter. We would need to negotiate a way to buy the place at some point because we just could not justify selling our house, moving to the farm and then in  a year down the road have to move again. We began the discussion with my parents and my Dad spoke with his family. It was a large discussion, because I have a large family, but everyone was in agreement that we could go ahead and move in, and down the road work toward buying the house and a parcel of land. So.... with that we started planning to move. It was a BLUR, to say the least. The first weekend in November was when we would move. It was actually opening hunting! The boys hunted in the morning and evening and we moved in during the day. In the weeks prior to that, the family got together and cleared out the house of all of Grandma's things (except the kitchen table which Grandma said had to stay with the house, and a few odds and ends that no one took. We then came into the house, painted, cleaned, cleaned and cleaned. We got it liveable again after being vacant for 2 years.

Also in this time frame was Halloween. It was awful. Halloween was Hailee's absolute favorite!! Here are some photos to prove it:

The morning of the move is when I packed the first box. It was mass chaos. It very much resembled our life at the time. We threw things in boxes and our friend Joe came over with his giant trailer and we loaded it up, with no real order or plan. It was nuts. We got what we needed to get by (which was almost everything because Joe's trailer was huge). We packed up the cats and the dog and we pulled away from the house. I could not believe how easy it was to do it. It felt strange, and a little scary, but it felt right. And do you know what? I could honestly feel Hailee coming with us. I felt her as we got to the farm and started setting up the house. She came with us, never left us. She did not stay with the house, she stayed with us. <3

We got into the house as best as we could, which was actually not exactly what Marcus and Justin had wanted. We were moving them away from their friends too.... which was not fun for them. However, Marcus could drive already so that made it a bit easier. There was a huge transition, though for them.

As we settled in that November, we prepared for our first Thanksgiving without Hailee. It would be at the farm, and we would bring Grandma Carolyn home for the day to her home, for Thanksgiving.

More to come,


In loving Memory of These Beautiful Souls

Annie Bahneman~ Age 7~ Minnesota
Blake Driggers~ Age 8~ South Carolina
Christian Strickland~ Age 9~ Virginia
Courtney Nash~ Age 16~ Florida
Dalton Counts~ Age 9~Oklahoma
Elizabeth Simms Hollingsworth~ Age 10~ So. Carolina
Hailee Marie LaMeyer ~ Age 11~ Minnesota
Jack Ariola Erenberg~ Age 9~ Minnesota
Jeff Rosenthal~ Age 19~ Florida
John "Jack" Herrera~ Age 12~ Texas
Marissa Claire Cook-Norris~ Age 7~ South Carolina
Mark Kincade~ Age 27~ Texas
Mason Faubel~ Age 6~ Minnesota
Phillip Gompf~ Age 9~ Florida
Waylon Able~ Age 30~ Indiana
Will Matthews~ Age 14~ Louisiana
William Steven Sellars~ Age 11~ Florida
Zachary Reyna~ Age 12~ Florida