Thursday 18 December 2014

Stella : 10 months an angel

The 18th has creeped up on us again. 18 used to surprisingly be my favourite number but 10 months ago today it became a date I would never forget. I watched Ellen yesterday and heard of a family that suddenly lost their little boy at 3.5 years old and then today I watched Marilyn Dennis and they made a little girl's wish came true, her name is Stella. Somehow I am constantly reminded of our little sweet girl in everything I do. Ofcourse I think of her hundreds of times in a day but to hear of these stories it brings ours to the front of my thoughts.
Christmas is a time for family, a time for giving and a different time for us this year. The lead up of course as I have mentioned before is always worse then the actual day itself so I am sure it will be the same next week as well for us. My brain still doesn't compute that Stella will never be here again. Hudson is at an age where Stella being 19 months or her now being 29 months old, I can imagine her as his big sister. As time goes by, she will less and less feel like my children's older sister but the little baby who would have been their big sister, which makes me sad.
As always, I am generally doing really well but Stella is on my mind much more these past few weeks with the Christmas rush happening. It hasn't been as much fun preparing for Christmas as it normally has been the past 2 years. I wouldn't be up for much if it wasn't for Hudson. I am greatly looking forward to spending time with our families but I would have no problem skipping Christmas this year. Its just a reminder of what we are missing with Stella. On the other hand, as always there is another side to all of our feelings, I am so grateful for all that we DO have and am concentrating on those aspects of life. Its a great reminder to enjoy the family you do have in the present, while of course remembering those who are not and not worry about the meaningless things in life. As hard as it is for me, being the emotional person I am. Concentrate your love, feelings and energy towards those worthy of it and cherish the ones who gladly return it.
Its been 10 months of happy and apprehensive steps forward with my pregnancy and birth of Hudson but also 10 months of deep sadness and longing for Stella.
Thank you to all those who constantly look out for us, your text messages and facebook comments, your emails, small acts and gifts of kindness and help constantly amaze me and got me through the craziness of pregnancy after our great loss and get me through the days since. For those who I have become closer with through this unbelievable time (some of you were strangers 10 months ago) and those who have stood strong by my side - I greatly appreciate it from the bottom of my heart.

Happy Holidays to all xo

Here is Stella's 10 month update.

I am now double digits, 10 months old! And the biggest news I want to share is that I finally have 2 teeth and I took my first steps this past month!! I haven't been too upset over my new teeth surprisingly. Grandma noticed two sharp buds and now I have two full fledge teeth on the bottom that you can see in some of my 10 month old photos. I think I have more on the way! Stay tuned..
I have been walking holding onto two hands since the end of January (walking with two hands is "so February" lol), then I started to walk with only one hand holding onto Mommy after we got back from Mexico. And the week before Mother's Day I took steps on my own! The only person I like to walk to is Mommy as I'm not quite confident yet on my own, so I let go and sit down unless I'm walking to Mom. Mommy says I can do it as I hardly hold onto her finger tip anymore and I basically walk on my own...I'm just waiting to surprise everyone and take off!!
I now eat most of the food Mommy and Daddy eat at the dinner table. I love chicken breast, grilled zucchini and nearly everything else. I don't always like puree anymore as I like to feed myself. You will see lots of photos of me eating.
I'm so happy and excited that my new friend has arrived...Baby B is Mommy's friend's daughter and my new BFF!! I am going to teach her so much!
I still make funny faces...I scrunch my face and breathe in and out quickly. I also open my mouth wide and scrunch my nose and eyes. I say Mama and Dada. I also started learning animal sounds! I make BAA BAA and NEIGH sounds. I love turning the book pages. I shake the rattle when you say SHAKE SHAKE, and dance when you say DANCE DANCE as well as kick in the bath. I am starting to copy everything from noises to faces to funny sounds with my mouth. I am still screaming to get attention which Mom doesn't like much but I do understand the word NO. Sometimes I think its funny when Mommy says it.
I'm still dancing to music and love to multi task by playing with a rattle and walking with my walker. You can watch my walk on the videos on my own and with the walker. I also cruise holding multiple items...Mommy always seems to multi task so I do too.
Here is what I have been up to this month! I went to the cottage! Love to you all near and far...hopefully one day we all can experience life together...face to face!

Tuesday 18 November 2014

Stella : 9 months since she grew her angel wings

I sat in bed last night thinking about how today it has been 9 months still Stella grew her angel wings. Life although it has been moving forward quickly feels like it is at a stand still regarding Stella. I continually struggle with this thought as its mind blowing she is still not here with us. We are generally doing great as we have been given a new joy with Hudson in our lives but its not the same without our sweet girl. Hearing friends daughters say his name so cutely in different ways and watch them interact is so nice to experience but a sad reminder of what Stella might be doing and saying at 28 months old. Gearing up for Christmas reminds me of so many great times together. Oh how this Christmas would have been different with two kids to sit on Santa's lap. I think this is a good chance for me to look at some of her videos, its been a little while, in the meantime, here is Stella's 9 month update. It's amazing how much growth and development happens in 9 months time. I feel like it was yesterday I posted her 8 month update.
We love you Munchkin Girl!
I am now 9 months old! We just got back from Mexico, where we celebrated Grandma's birthday..I also turned 9 months old while there. I am a pretty strong crawler now on my hands and knees but I still prefer to walk and am obsessed with walking! I pick up a lot of speed and run to Daddy and after my cousin. I also let go of the hands and stand for up to 5 seconds or so. I've also started walking with only holding one hand too. My couch cruising skills are getting faster and I also bend down to pick things up while cruising. I cruise and crawl with food in my hands sometimes, I have a tight grip.
I got to enjoy so many foods in Mexico and use both hands to put (shove) food in my mouth (I love grouper fish)...I am like a squirrel and keep food in my cheeks. I love all foods and love feeding myself. I learned so much from my cousin in Mexico, from eating foods and squealing (screaming) with delight! I got so much attention from the guests, staff and my family I now seek attention by screaming - Mommy is not very happy about this.
My hair is getting thicker and I still have no teeth but drooling as usual for the past 6 months - my shirt is always wet. I go to the library with Mom and crawl to the front of the room to get a close look at the book being read. I really like the Joe Fresh commercial, it always gets my attention when its on and I wave my arms in excitement. I loved swimming in the pool in Mexico and slept in my stroller by the pool for all of my naps, it was so relaxing. I slept a bit on the plane and walked the aisles and played..everyone commented how good I was! I wasn't as good on the way home since I learned to squeal but people still said I was a good travelling baby although I didn't let Mommy sit down for long.
I got to visit my friends before we left for Mexico and attended also a baby shower. I can't wait for Baby B to arrive. I'm such a lucky girl with so many people to love and who love me.

Saturday 18 October 2014

Stella : 8 months since that horrible day

8 months have now gone by since that horrible day in February. I can't believe its been that long since we've cuddled our girl we miss so dearly. Stella would have now met her new little brother Hudson..I wish we could experience them meeting. Although we only know Stella as a 19 month old I can only imagine how she would act as a 27 month old (as of yesterday). Would we be dealing with the terrible twos and the extreme determination at this age - probably so! Stella was such a level, even keeled toddler its hard to imagine her any other way but I'm sure as she would have grown these past 8 months things would have changed. I see so much of Stella in her baby brother. He is so familiar to me and similar to his big sister when she was born, although he is definitely more boyish looking! Surprisingly, as always, when we finally arrive at a situation we have been waiting and anticipating, its always been better than what I expected. Stella was part of the delivery with her photo at our side and part of our first family photos by including Baby Stella doll as planned. Hudson has been hearing about his sister Stella and his Dida Mike already. It's still hard to believe she's not here and I don't have both of my children by my side and our family of 4. We are thrown back in time to memories of bringing Stella home as our first born but this time its much harder as our family isn't as it should be and never will be. It's not fair they don't get to meet on another but we are trying to stay positive and enjoy these first few weeks together as a little family. Hudson was brought into this world after his Great Grandfather passed away and he is truly a gift to our family that Stella is watching from up above!

 Stella's 8 month update

I am now 8 months old. It's been another busy month as usual! The biggest news is that I started to crawl this past month. I started to pull myself and now I am pushing hard and picking up some speed. I am always grabbing for Mommy's fingers so I can use them stand up and walk around. I don't want to sit and want to walk all the time! I also hate being on my own, I love being with Mommy...reaching for her even when with Daddy. Mommy stays busy with me these days.
I say both Dada and Mama. When Mommy holds me and Daddy come around and when I see him I say Dada. I usually only say Mama when I am upset and crying. Mommy and Daddy also hear me say "hello!" like they say in the morning - I don't quite say the word but make the sound of the word. I clap my hands together, get excited when music is on and wave my arms up and down when I am happy and excited. I pull myself up to the couch and have cruised along the couch trying to grab water glasses, cell phones and the tv remote. When Mommy sits on the ground I crawl onto her lap and up her onto the couch. My crib was lowered as I started to stand in my crib.
Still no teeth but that doesn't stop me from enjoying food. I now eat (suck on) cantaloupe and strawberries. I also had pieces of steamed carrot...feeding myself! I still LOVE puffs. I still drool and gnaw on my fingers so something must be on the way. I love Mama's milk so she doesn't mind that I don't have teeth! I also love to drink water from a straw and tend to chug it like Daddy!
I really enjoy hanging out with all of my baby friends. I love to play and watch others play. I even crawl over to other Mommy's for a visit and cuddle. We are getting ready for our family trip next month...getting summer clothes and gear out and prepped. I cannot wait to "tear up" the resort and cruise around with Cousin J - watch out Cabo - ay ay aye!!

Thursday 18 September 2014

Stella : 7 months missed

It's been 7 months today that we lost our sweet Stella. Time is continuing to pass quickly as we have been busy at home and work, its hard to believe Stella is going to miss the arrival of her little brother in a few weeks time. Thinking of two people who aren't here with us, one that will be and one that won't ever be is difficult and wanting to include each into eachothers lives - we know that won't be fully possible. I've had lots of thoughts of how to continue to include Stella in our family - she is always in our thoughts and we talk about her..I plan to hopefully finish Stella's memory wall at our house and to include her Baby Stella doll into our photos in her place. I will pack a photo of Stella to have at the hospital so her little Bro is introduced right away to Stella. Unfortunately this little guy will be exposed to life in a different way than others kids because in order for him to know his sister he will know a part of life that no one should have to know about that early - ofcourse we plan to explain things age appropriately but we can't not tell him about Stella. I say it every month but its crazy to me that she is not here with us and the thoughts of what Stella would be doing - I see how much she grew in her first 7 months but what would this past month include?! Watching my nephew interact with his new little brother is so sweet to watch but very difficult at the same time as I can imagine how Stella would love and welcome her little brother.
Although I know its been hard on everyone, I appreciate everyone sharing their thougths about Stella with me. If anyone has photos that I don't have copies of, I'd love to get them.
Miss you baby girl everyday xoxo

Stella's 7 month update

I am now 7 months old...getting much closer to turning 1! It's always a busy month.. I'm still teething and drooling but no teeth are poking out yet. My hair is growing tons and evening out all over. I love to eat! There really isn't much food I don't like (except green veggies!). Mommy made me home made healthy food which I love. I self feed puffs so quickly now, I pop them in my mouth and love them!
I'm attached to Mommy lately..whenever she leaves the room I look for her but I have had a great time while being babysat by Gran, Grandma and Grandpa, Great Uncle G and Auntie E while Mommy and Daddy have some time out together. I LOVE to blow raspberries just to be silly but I also do it when I am tired or when I don't like food or certain things. I've started to dance when my parents say "Dance Dance Stella!" and I also now jump in my jumper now. I now know how to put one foot in front of the other (see video!) and as you know, I love to stand so now I take off and start walking everywhere with some help. I am a bit apprehensive but am sooo close to crawling. I sit then go on all fours, then sit then go on all fours and nearly pounce forward when I am excited. Sometimes I land on my belly then I act like I am swimming in the pool! I started swim lessons and was worried and clung to Mommy with my head burried in her shoulder but now after two more lessons, I splash so much that Mommy gets all wet and her makeup runs down her face! My legs kick under the water and I can float on my back wearing a life jacket. The instructor is amazed at me!
I got my passport and am ready to go on vacation in April to Cabo Mexico with the entire family..I can't wait to see my cousin J! Until then, I am here in the snow. We had a huge snow storm with over one foot of snow on our street. I sat outside in my snow suit for the first time in snow! I looked like a pink little eskimo in my snowsuit!
I'm still watching my sign language dvd's and I've started to do one of the signs! I sign "eat"..I put my hands together and tap my mouth a few times. I don't really know what it means yet but I am signing! I celebrated and watched my first Superbowl..I was decked out in red, white and gold with a matching headband but it was too bad that Daddy's team didn't win, probably because I stopped cheering for them when I went to bed.
I keep growing and getting taller and thinner! I'm such a busy body, I don't stop touching anything I can get my hands on especially cell phones and the tv remote and put them in my mouth. I sit on the couch with Daddy, pull myself up and crawl and wrestle all over him. I even stand myself up on my own. You would think I can walk or crawl by the way I am all over the place!

Monday 18 August 2014

Stella : 6 months since our little girl left us

It's been 6 months today that our little girl left us. Again I think of all the wonderful things that happened in Stella's first six months of life and life since has definitely been less joyful and exciting despite having so much go on - we would prefer to have Stella experience it with us. It's crazy to think that half a year has gone by. I constantly wonder what Stella would be up to, what she would be saying and what she would look like as we see our friends children growing and developing so much. It's still very hard to not be busy with a little one but that will change very soon with the arrival of our boy in 7 weeks, or if he decides to come early like Stella, 4 weeks?!? We are getting things ready but its a challenge as our family is not complete without Stella and I wish we could seeing Stella interact with her brother - that's half the fun of growing a family. Our love for Stella was cut off instantly and I know our love will grow for this little guy but it will definitely be an adjustment while getting to know him. He will definitely hear much about his big Sister, who we know would love him very much.
As my pregnancy moves forward, ofcourse I am becoming more tired and more emotional!! So this past little while has been hard not having our family together to enjoy J and J's wedding and Oma's 90th today and all the memories along the way and in day to day life. But we know things will get better with time, although time is also hard -a double edged sword.
So much happened in Stella's first six months of life and I realize it when I re read her six month update. Here it is. Stella would be 2 years and 1 month tomorrow. Missed daily...never forgotten.

Stella's 6 month update

Hi Everyone,
It's time to celebrate, its my half year birthday! 6 months have passed by so quickly in our family! This month I have perfected sitting up. Although I still LOVE to stand, I love to hang out sitting up and on my tummy. Sometimes I fall over but I don't normally hit my head as I can scrunch my body up to avoid face planting! I am starting to get ready to crawl, pushing my knees under my bottom. I am learning to clap, so far I wave my arms around and hit my legs. I am interested in EVERYTHING, I'm very curious and need to touch everything and put it in my mouth..wait till I start crawling! Watch out!
I guess I was a good girl because Santa visted our house for my first Christmas! I had a wonderful Christmas dinner complete with starting solids with the entire V family...cereal to start and since then I love peas, carrots and sweet potato, butternut squash, apples and peaches, banana and blueberries. I love sitting at the table in my highchair with Mommy and Daddy for dinner as a family.
I'm still drooling and gnawing on my fingers a lot but no teeth have poked through. Mommy thinks she sees one coming..stay tuned! I stopped sleeping through the night temporarily but seem to be back on track again. I now sleep on my tummy, since I am such a good roller, I roll to my tummy right away once in my crib. I got lots of fun toys for Christmas, I especially love my pink vanity complete with a compact, comb, lipstick, powder puff and mirror from Great Uncle G and my cousins W and J! I also got a fun jumpy car from Great Uncle B and Great Aunt P. I caught up with my cousin J for a few days and we had so much fun together playing just like old times at the cottage. J makes me giggle a lot. Oh yeah, I also giggle now! Daddy makes me giggle the most..
My dark hair that I was born with at the back is now falling out, all over the place and my lighter hair continues to grow in on top. Everyone loves my headbands that Mommy makes so she has been making them for my friends. I'm getting taller but we will know how much I have grown next week for my 6 month shots. I'm long and strong but still have rolly polly legs and "Michelin arms" as Daddy calls them. Just before Christmas I got my ears pierced.
Santa brought me baby signing dvds which I love to watch...they keep me interested for the entire movie! Mommy sings the songs with me and sometimes sings them even when the dvd isn't on. I start swim lessons at the end of the month and I have my bathing suit ready to go.. I made new friends this month too..I finally met my friend L from Vancouver as well as the twins A and C. I watch Mommy do her exercise class and I kick my legs and copy Mommy. I give lots of cuddles and big wet kisses.
Anyway, that's it for now...a month in the life of me, Stella Eve!

Thursday 17 July 2014

Stella : 2 years ago was the best moment of my life

2 years ago at 4:31am was the best moment of my life, Stella Eve was born and little did we know what effect she would have on all of us nor would we know what was to come. I was 36 weeks and 6 days pregnant, at home relaxing when my body decided it was time for Stella to join this world - 3 weeks early. My water broke but nothing happened. We later made our way to the hospital and I was induced at 8pm and ready to go at 2am. An hour later it was time to start pushing, the moment I had waited my entire life for, to meet this little one my body made. Little to say it wasn't that easy but Stella did make her way to the light of day 1 hour later and boy did she make an entrance!
It was love at first sight but being first time parents we had no idea how our love would grow for her and our family so quickly. We loved every stage and thinking back it never felt overwhelming but quickly realized how great every new stage became as we got to know Stella better, her personality became more apparent and our love continued to grow leaps and bounds.
Our little Bunny grew so well right from the start and blessed us by sleeping through the night by 3.5 months old. We didn't know at the time that sound sleeper would be something that we never would have wanted that February 18th morning.
Life with Stella was amazing, she supported my shopping habit on mat leave and gave me many opportunities to stop and talk to people - she always gave a little smile or look right at the perfect time, strangers would stop us and tell me how cute she was. Those full cheeks, long eyelashes, blue eyes and body creases! No one could resist her and I understand why!
As she grew and began to understand her surroundings, we would watch her think. You could see the thoughts going through Stella's head. She would look around, think about the situation and decide how to handle it in a calm, cool and collected manner. She was always confident which helped us be confident parents who many people would comment that it was like she was our second baby - she made life easy! Stella came everywhere with us and got to know so many friends and family. She would sleep in her playpen at blaring parties, hang out at the cottage, play quietly at baby showers and events, so why wouldn't we bring her with us, she is part of our family and we never wanted her not to be.
When my mat leave was up, it was time to determine who would take care of our girl. We decided to enroll Stella in the toddler program at a Montessori school. She was 13 months old and the youngest in her class. She started walking very early so she could always keep up with the older kids and we are told ran the show. Even with her older cousin J who would follow Stella around wondering and curious as to what she was up to, Stella would continue onwards and upwards with whatever she was doing acting like she didn't even know he was following her. She was a busy body who didn't stop until she got the task done. From start to finish, she would play with toys and put them away after her - a teachers and parents dream! She made me unaware of how other children play as she was always so calm and not destructive, hopefully these traits will follow in her baby brother.
Stella was always such a healthy baby but like many others started to get coughs and colds being exposed at daycare. Thanksgiving weekend was the first moment where we were exposed to the feeling and thoughts of losing Stella when she had her first febrile seizure in my arms. She wasn't breathing and we didn't know what was going on. Running around frantically, it was a blur at the time but I remember it so clearly now. As parents we all have worries and thoughts of our children being injured or passing away - what would you do but this would never happen! We were told her seizures are normal and might be part of her life until she is 5.
We enjoyed Christmas and many events to come before a seizure would return. Any colds or fevers, we would monitor her closely to watch her temperature, it became part of our normal life but we continued to live life to the fullest as we didn't know if a seizure would in fact return!
Stella won the hearts of my new co-workers and was my little fashion model. She didn't mind wearing any of the clothes I would put on her (why would she, they are adorable!) She loved playing in her room and repetitively practice her skills. She was a good eater and loved drinking water. I now notice how many photos we have of Stella with her sippy cup. She loved goldfish crackers. Sean and I love candy but Stella never pushed to eat them but when we gave her a ju-jube she savoured it, holding it in her hand and sucking on it as she pleased. She never worried us by putting things in her mouth or eating dangerous things, she knew better! When we would mention a possible time out, Stella would put her self on the time out carpet on her own and when the minute was up, she often didn't want to leave. One time I remember her watching me, knowing she should be sitting, she would get up and look out for Mommy bending over to see me then sit down when I saw her. What a little devil!
January 6, 2012 one of Stella's first days back at daycare I got the call that Stella was possibly having another seizure. It was bad weather and I was stuck on Derry road bumper to bumper in a panic to make it to my baby. Stella always recovered from her seizures despite being sick, she would end up playing in the hospital and entertaining other with her cuteness. We enjoyed many indoor and outdoor days of fun between that seizure and the next which came too quickly on February 2nd. We had a house full of friends for Superbowl and poor Stells temp spiked and along came another seizure but this time Grandma got to experience it with us. Stella had pneumonia and I struggled knowing what to do and taking time off from work as many parents have.
Stella got better quickly as she always did. She was speaking more and amazed us by knowing many animal sounds and could pick out words on demand. Sean and I loved watching her develop and discover new things. She loved helping us with everything we did and loved to clean. She was helpful putting garbage away without being asked and put our dishes away in the dishwasher. We couldn't believe this was our child! Stella got a kitchen for Christmas and would play for hours in her kitchen.
When Stella found out she would be a big sister, we bought her a baby doll for Valentines day. We got to experience how great of a big sister she would be, feeding her baby and tending to her baby for that last weekend. We spent our last day together on Family Day not knowing what was to come the next day.
Looking back, it will be 5 months ago Stella became our Angel and there were tough times and scary times as all first time parents experience but Stella brought us a lifetime of joy in her short 19 months and 1 day that can never be replaced.
We wish we could celebrate her 2nd birthday with her today, hug and kiss her and watch her enjoy her day with friends and family like we did on this day last year at her ruffle pancake party. A day doesn't go by where I don't think of her, what she would be saying or doing and what she would look like and how she would continue to bring joy to our family. Those big blue eyes that showed so much emotion and that quirky face she would make. Her soft kisses and always holding my hand.
We hope to continue to share our memories with you all and vice versa as its our way for her to continue to live on although she will live on in our hearts forever!
Happy 2nd Birthday to our girl Stella and two years of experiencing the joy of being her Mom even though it has been 5 months since seeing her. All we can now do is help find a cure and research into SUDC and try and remember all those special Stella moments!

Sunday 18 May 2014

Stella: 3 months gone

It's been 3 months since Stella passed away. We continue to miss our Stella Belle like crazy and wishing she was here to see my belly grow and to be part of the excitement of it all as well as helping us pack! 
wink emotico
 As time passes I continue to wonder what she would be doing especially when I see other kids growing and developing. It's been a very hard few weeks for me as the season changes we would be outside with Stella at the park, she would be wearing the spring clothes I got for her (and the white jacket she got for xmas from Grandma and Grandpa shown in the photo), she would be talking up a storm and may have let me do something with her hair?

Here is Stella's 3 month old update. I will continue to repost my monthly updates as she grew and now as time passes without her. We miss you Munchkin Girl!

Stella's 3 month update

Hi Everyone,
I am now 3 months old, boy does time fly when you are having fun. This past month I have been busy, I was babysat by Grandma and Grandpa and my Gran while Mommy went to a concert, also Mommy and Daddy went to Cirque de Soleil and also went for dinner to celebrate their 1 year wedding anniversary. Gran threw me a baby shower with all of my parents friends and I was spoiled rotten with love and pressies. 

I went to where Mommy and Daddy went to university for dinner to Morty's and I went to a soccer party where I met my 5 other friends who were born just after I was. I had my first thanksgiving dinner and met new friends through two playdates with home and Soccer friends. Mommy and I love to shop together!

Mommy and Daddy have started to train me to sleep longer at night and its working! I only feed every 4 hours during the day now that my tummy is bigger and I slept 8 hours last night! My eyes look even bigger now (they also are lighter blue) and I smile a lot now. I like to copy what Mommy and Daddy do- faces and making different sounds. I've also discovered my hands last week...they are so interesting! I haven't grown too much this past month but I am making up for it in development! I have strong legs and can hold my self up with Daddy's help. I am working on rolling over and have gone to my side twice! My head is super sturdy, my legs can push hard and my hands are starting to grip objects tightly!

I love hanging out on my playmat for over half an hour at a time...I kick like crazy and swat the toys. I also sleep in my crib in my own room now! My hair is filling in on top (Daddy keeps messing it up!) and its changing to look more like Mommy and Daddy's lighter hair. Everyone says I look like my Daddy,which Mommy doesn't mind.
Here are some photos of me.
Love Stella xox