My Spring Reading List!

After the heavier reading of Lent, I thought I'd like to continue some inspirational spiritual reading through the Easter season as well. 

Here's my book list!

Private and Pithy lessons from Scripture - Mother Angelica
Little Book of Life Lessons - Mother Angelica
Three to Get Married - Fulton Sheen
The Little Oratory
Diary Sister Faustina
Getting Past Perfect - Kate Wicker
The Words We Pray - Amy Welborn
Perfectly Yourself - Matthew Kelly 
Crossing the Threshold of Hope - Pope John Paul II




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Raphael

This month was the 1 year anniversary of our baby's death. I wasn't sure how I was going to handle the anniversary. It was strange knowing that the date was getting closer, only this year I knew to expect it.

A lot of the families at Holy Cross decorate their babies graves for birthdays and holidays. My kids, particularly my little 4-year-old daughter really, really, really, loves it when the graves have new toys or balloons, or statuary etc. I didn't want to ignore Raphael's birthday, but at the same time my heart was breaking at not having him in my arms. But just like last year, I wanted this to be a good experience for my other children. I also fully realized that this first year would set tradition for our family.

So, we did buy balloons - a Happy Birthday balloon, and a Happy Halloween Balloon. I also bought a pot of hardy mums, just like we had last year. The flowers in our vase at the cemetery still looked great, and after we had fastened the balloons and put down the mums, it looked positively festive!. The baby next to us, little Austin, also had a birthday and his mom had decorated for that. Austin would be 14 years old, as old as my oldest. The baby on the other side also had a birthday, but his parents were more low key with a bouquet of white roses on the stone and some plastic flowers in their vase. I wonder if they think we're odd for having Happy Birthday balloons?

The baby next to that was 5 months old when she passed away. I met her mom once... she looked very young to me,and very sad. That baby loved apple juice and for her birthday (which as fate would have it, was also the same week!) she had some apple juice on the headstone, a little Kelly doll (which I know Izzy was tempted to take, but she hates it when things are taken off of Raphael's grave so she resisted), and even a blanket sleeper in a gift bag!

I don't think it was the birthday for the baby on the other side of her, but that little one also got some flowers and a Winnie the Pooh balloon this week. She never has anything on her grave so it was nice to see. The string of 5 little graves in a row there with balloons, and flowers and gifts etc. was a bright spot in the cemetery. You could even get a splash of the color if you were on the highway going past the cemetery if you knew right where to look.

Unfortunately things looked different yesterday when I went out to check. Our mums had been taking (darn it) as had the baby sleeper at the little girl's grave. The helium balloons were losing there puffiness. After last night's wind storm I'll have to go out there tomorrow or Saturday to clean up and put something else there - maybe artificial flowers now that it's past November 1 and allowed.

I thought maybe I'd get some phone calls or something on the anniversary. I shouldn't really surprised that none were forthcoming. People move on - it's the way it should be. My sister remembered which was very sweet. We went out and had a bite to eat and to talk. My sister-in-law called a few days later, but we didn't have a chance to speak because I had a student. When I called her back she was out. I'll probably just let it drop. I could hear her baby on her lap as we spoke briefly, and I just don't think I'm ready for that, or that I can talk about baby stuff just yet.

It also occurred to me that maybe I should take the crib down in my room - it's full of clothes (mine and Pete's) and my exercise ball and other junk. It would give us more room, but I'm not ready to do that yet. Not yet.


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