Monday, March 9, 2009

Beautiful Day

Yesterday, Paprika and I went to a memorial party for Devon and Rob's twin sons, Blake and Ethan. Both of their boys passed away a year ago, Blake on March 8th and Ethan on March 7th, due to prematurity. They were about three weeks older than Vivian and Annemarie when they died. Blake and Ethan have had a huge impact on our lives because of the friendship and support Devon and her husband Rob have shown to Mr. Mustard and I over the past eight months.

It was an emotional day, and a beautiful one. There were lots of kids at the party. We got to the party early and we stayed late! Devon and Rob had rented a bouncy, which Paprika took full advantage of while we were at the party. I think she probably bounced for five hours straight!

Getting to spend time with Devon and Rob's families on such an important day was such a blessing. Blake and Ethan have brought so many people together- although their lives were short in days, they have been very long in significance.

When we first got to the party, we got to meet Devon's sister-in-law and brother-in-law, and their two kids: Camryn and Wyatt. Camryn is four and is a leukemia survivor. Camryn's leukemia is back, and she is currently undergoing agressive treatment to battle the disease. Their story is pretty amazing, and another testament to the strength of families during incredibly sad and difficult times. They are currently walking a very difficult path, and could use all the prayers you can spare.

Later on, a huge group of people came to the party to celebrate the boys' lives. Devon and Rob had organized a balloon release, and we all wrote messages to the boys before we sent our balloons up to Heaven. Watching those balloons fade into the sky is so hard- and so many of us were crying as we watched the balloons escape. Of course, the kids at the party were blissfully unaware of the significance of the balloons, and were sad we let them go for different reasons!

I can only imagine what grief looks like at the one year mark. Please pray for Devon, Rob, and big sister Riley as they pick themselves up and walk forward every day without their sons, Blake and Ethan, here on earth. They are certainly in our prayers.

Here are a few pics from our day:

Paprika, Bouncing:

And Bouncing...

And Bouncing...

With Blake and Ethan's Big Sister, Riley:

Having too much fun!

Getting Ready for the Balloon Release:

About to Release:

Blake and Ethan's Balloons:

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