May 30, 2011


I just wanted to take a moment to thank all of our family and friends for making Carter's first angelversary so special. I appreciate all of your little messages, gifts, good thoughts, and prayers. Michael and I were just talking about how lucky we are to have amazing people in our lives. Thank you. It means so much to us.

I am going to do a longer post tomorrow about our day today, because quite honestly I'm heading to bed. Yes, it's only 6:32, but I'm ready.

Our sweet friends, Kathy and Terry, put a memorial in the newspaper for Carter, and I think it pretty much sums up how we feel today. Thank you for doing this you means SO much to see his sweet little face there!
We stopped by the cemetery three times today, and each time there were more and more decorations. There's no doubt that our little guy was loved (this pic was taken the first time).

Thank you again to EVERYONE. We appreciate you all!

Good night!

May 29, 2011

The Day Before Kung Fu

Dear Carter,

We went to see Kung Fu Panda 2 this morning, and it was so SO good. I'm a huge Kung Fu Panda fan anyway, and this movie just put the icing on the cake. There was one particular part that had me in tears and made me think of you, but I don't want to go into too much detail because I don't want to spoil the movie for anybody.

We came home afterward, and I got the wonderful opportunity to participate in a book chat about Angie Smith's book I Will Carry You. It was nice to chat with these ladies, and I feel as though I made a few new blogger friends.

We've been preparing for the day tomorrow. I still can't believe that we will celebrate your first angel day, but am thankful for the way we will be celebrating. Your daddy is running a half-marathon for you, and your brother and sister will be running a kid's mile. I asked them if they would like to wear their Team Carter shirts, or the shirt provided by the race...they didn't even have to think about it before replying that they wanted to wear your shirt. I'm so proud of them.
We're hopeful that the rain goes away for the morning, otherwise it's going to be a very dreary run.

We love you little sweetie pie.

May 28, 2011

Small Distractions

Dear Carter,

I'm amazed by how just thinking about certain dates affects me so much. I'm not typically a sentimental person when it comes to specific dates, but when I woke up this morning...I remembered almost immediately that this was the day that we made that incredibly hard decision to take you off of the ventilator.

I remember coming home and having to tell your brother and sister what would probably happen...that you were going to live with Jesus.

I remember the way that Mikey reacted when we told him, and it will haunt me until the day that I die.

I remember going shopping for outfits for your brother and sister to wear for the Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep pictures.

That day is one of those days that I wish I could completely erase from my memory. I don't feel like anything good came out of it. I'd rather think about the day you died over this day because I knew that you were healed, but I've honestly done rather well today, and I think it's been because of a few small distractions. I am thankful for these to keep my mind off of all of those bad memories.

As I told you before, we have a couple of birds living in our parkway. We were excited to see that the fourth egg was laid this morning. This is a picture of the two eggs, I can't get close enough to see all four now that "Polly" and "Popcorn" are always there to protect them.

This is the left side of our parkway RIGHT next to our driveway. That's the sidewalk right next to "Polly". I'm hoping they can stay safe. We've already had one neighbor come to our door to let us know that we had a sick bird in our yard.
She's not sick!! She's just a good mommy (yay for telephoto lenses)!

I can't help but think that these silly birds are in some way a Random Act Of Carter. You wouldn't think that a couple of birds could bring so much entertainment to a family, but they sure have. Your brother and sister want to name the eggs now that they've named "Polly" and "Popcorn".

Our church mass was said in your name tonight, and the last time this happened it was extremely emotional for us. Since a lot of people were making their First Holy Communion tonight, it made the mass a bit more happy for us. I appreciate that small distraction as well.

Oh baby boy, I can't believe that it's really been almost a year since we've said goodbye.

I miss you.

May 26, 2011

Random Act Of Carter Thursday Update

Dear Carter,

Is it just our family, or has May been a crazy busy month?! I keep on trying to do a Random Act Of Carter every single day, and I think that I've done a pretty good job at it. I've made a lot of small donations in honor of you, and I've also tried to be extra nice to people. I had to laugh when one day I tried to let a lady go in front of me at the checkout, and she absolutely refused. She had her hands full and I had a full cart, but she still refused to go ahead of me. I wanted to stop and say to her "can't you see I'm trying to do a Random Act of Carter here?!"

I have heard from a lot of people that they have been doing a LOT of little things to help make the world more beautiful. One of our favorite families, the Travis' set up this very cool jar with your picture on it Each time their kids did something nice,they got to put a fuzzball in it. As you can see, it filled right up! Way to go Travis kids!! We love you guys (and the baby girl not pictured)!

I also heard from you friend Isaac's mommy. You can read up on Isaac by clicking here:

One Day At A Time

Here's what Isaac's Mommy had to say:
Dear Team Carter,

Carter and my sweet boy Isaac remind me everyday to do good things for other people. Because of this journey, I recently started a support network in my area for Moms of special needs kiddos who are medically complex. Not only do we meetup up during the month, but there has been so much more to it. Recently a couple of Moms in the group had surgery or were struggling with their own major health issues and were unable to care for the family. The moms group is also in connection to another awesome program called community meet community. I called the leader of that group and they provided meals for a week for each Mom. Another cool thing is that a sweet boy named Branyan who reminds me of Isaac and Carter was born with a rare disorder. Recently the family heard about a convention in Chicago so that they could learn more about it. This weekend me and several other people donated items to a yard sale so that they could attend this much needed convention. If it wasn't for little miracles like Carter and Isaac I wouldn't know how to do good deeds like this for others. Thank you!

Thank you so much Colleen and Isaac! It's amazing what these kids can do, isn't it?

May 25, 2011

Need A Random Act Of Carter?

I'm sure that you've all heard about the devastation in Joplin. I'm praying that God helps these people work through it...I can't even imagine the fear and uncertainty they are feeling right now. Especially since these storms are not finished yet.

I have a friend, Allison, who blogs over at The Story Of Five, and I was especially struck by this picture on her blog.
I've spent a LOT of time in hospitals, and they always feel like a safe place to be. I can't imagine the terror that the patients felt as this tornado ripped through it.

Ironically, Allison's husband was supposed to start his new job at this hospital in July. They are preparing their move to this very town, so this has hit close to home for them. She wanted to do something to help, so she is doing an awesome fundraiser.

Allison is a Thirty One consultant, so she is hosting an online party until the end of the month here: Thirty One Party . ALL profits are being donated to either United Way or a needy family. If you don't know what Thirty One is, they sell ADORABLE bags of all shapes and sizes. They can also be personalized with names. Allison has been a great support to me through the birth of Carter, and the loss of him, so I felt compelled to share. I think this is a great way to help out. Even if you can't purchase something from her party, maybe you could help us spread the word....because maybe, just maybe somebody else you know can help.

May 24, 2011

Not Acceptable

Dear Carter,
I was so excited to see this video at the end of Glee tonight. Even though I know that some of the language will cause some controversy, I think that they nailed it.

Kill The Deer

Dear Carter,
Well, it looks like the rocks RIGHT next to our driveway have become a nest for a nice little Killdeer family.
If you don't know what a Killdeer is, it's quite an amusing bird. They will lay their eggs among rocks, or in a field and then when you get anywhere near the of them will act like it's wing is broken to lead you away. Some of them had made a nest across the street from us last year, and they were so much fun to watch. I guess now we'll have an even closer look. So far there's only one egg...can you spot it? I just did some research on the Killdeer bird (never thought that I'd EVER make a statement like that), and it looks like they can lay up to four eggs and it could take up to a week. We noticed that the mommy (or daddy...I'm not sure) only came back a couple of times today, but I guess that's normal until all of the eggs are laid. Mikey and Jovie are loving keeping an eye on this egg, but of course are careful to not get too close. This is really a pretty cool thing, and we're excited to watch it all unfold. Hopefully the eggs can stay safe since they are right in the parkway between the road and the sidewalk.

Now to think of names for the mommy and daddy. Sonny and Cher perhaps?

May 23, 2011

See You Later

Dear Carter,
What a busy month! I swear, we have something going on every single night and weekend for the next two weeks. I'm really not complaining because I think it's good to keep busy during this rough patch, it's just funny how things keep stacking up.

One of the activities that your brother and sister have been participating in is AYSO Soccer. They had a blast this year, and their last game was on Saturday. I'm not sure what their record was because they don't really keep score, but I'm pretty sure that each team had a good season. Here are a couple of pics from Saturday.

Now we get to move on to Tee-Ball for Mikey. The last two seasons were a complete blur to me because the first season started right as we got to bring you home, and the second was right after you went to Heaven. I'm a little anxious to see how this year goes.
I love you so much baby boy. I had a few short moments of peace today when I just felt totally and completely in love with you without any sadness. I love that feeling, and hope that more moments like those are coming soon. I'm sure they are. Just need to make it through May.

May 20, 2011

The Random Acts Of Carter Update

Dear Carter,

Well, your auction ended at a pretty good number. April managed to raise $39 for Operation Smile in memory of you. If you would like to check out her store, you can click here: Pinkebody's Store . She is very talented! Thank you April for all that you do!

Carter, you were at work again today! We found out earlier in the week that Jovie's dance class had the opportunity to perform at a benefit for your hospital. She was ecstatic to dance for you, and she did an amazing job! Her whole class did! I just know that you are proud!

I've been looking at a lot of different blogs about infant loss lately, and I came across this blog earlier this week: Life Rearranged . This site does a different series every month in which they raise money for different charities. This month's just happens to be Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep . We were very blessed to get some fabulous pictures taken of you by this amazing foundation, so I donated to help them reach their goal.

Hug High is continuing their work in your name. They have raised even more money for Operation Smile, and even had a Give A Hug For Carter day. We are amazed by this school. Thank you!!

I'm still missing you terribly, but today wasn't quite as bad. It's probably because I don't have a specific memory tied to this day. I love you my sweet boy, and hope to continue to make you proud!

The Auction

Dear Carter,
Check out your auction! It's moving right along!

I just wanted to let our readers know that this ends tonight, so if you have a moment check it out! April aka Pinkebody has named this colorway after Carter, and I have a couple of things made from it. It is beautiful!

Click here for Carter's Auction

We have an exciting Random Act Of Carter happening this afternoon, and I'll come back and update it later.

Thank you again for all of your love and support. We can't wait to hear what projects you've come up with for your Random Act Of Carter.

May 19, 2011

The Graduate

Dear Carter,
I can't believe that one year ago today was the last time that you were home with us. We packed you up early in the morning and took you up to the hospital. I had no idea that those last moments with you in the pre-surgical area would be the last time I would see you awake and alert. I treasured each second of it, and I always will.

I have been having a bit of a hard time lately. It's the time of year. So many anniversaries all in a row. The funny thing is that I've always thought that dates really didn't mean that much to me, and even as these dates were sneaking up on me I felt like I would be just fine. That is until they actually arrived. Now all I can think about is you and those last days with you. I hate thinking about the last days as they weren't the happiest time with you, but right now I find my mind drifting back there. I'm trying...I mean REALLY trying to just concentrate on the happy things that are happening right now, but I always find my mind back at the same place. This to shall pass...we just need to get through May.

Your sister graduated from Pre-school today. It's bittersweet for me. I'm extremely proud of her and the little girl she's becoming, but I honestly want to just keep her little. Your daddy always tell me that you'll always stay little for me, so at least I get to keep one of you small. Your brother and sister are growing up so fast!

Jovie had a little program for her graduation.

She wore her butterfly dress so that you would be there with her. I love this girl!

Afterward we had a picnic. Doesn't she look so grown up?! This girl loves her Daddy. Right now I can hear them talking about going on an alligator hunt together. I don't know where they come up with these things.

May 18, 2011

He's Got Talent.....Yes He Does!

Dear Carter,

Your brother had a talent show in his music class today. Mikey decided to do a magic trick. Unfortunately I didn't get very good video of it, and cut off at the end before the trick was actually over. That's what happens when you're fighting with a five year old over the camcorder.

He did a great job, and the first graders were all in awe of his magical skills. What a cutie pie! We are very proud of him, he's had a great first grade year. I'm so excited to have him home with me over the Summer. Last Summer was kind of a blur, so this Summer I hope to do a lot of fun things with your brother and sister.

I still have you very heavy on my mind. One year ago tonight was the last night you were at home with us. I try so hard to remember that night, but nothing comes to mind. I hate that some of my memories of you have faded like that. At least I have the videos and pictures to remind me of my favorite moments. Tomorrow is the day that started the beginning of the end. I wish that we could change the way things happened, but I know that God doesn't make mistakes and this was the way it was supposed to go. We've been trying to concentrate on your project to shift the focus a bit. I talked to your brother and sister about what we are trying to accomplish, and they both decided that they want to do something nice for somebody as a part of our Random Acts Of Carter. We've got one idea in mind which I'll share tomorrow after it's put together, and they are both brainstorming other ideas. I'm excited to see what they come up with.

Hug High is still plugging away with their Random Acts Of Carter. The last update I heard was they were up to over 3,000 good deeds done in your name, and almost $50 raised for Operation Smile. I am simply amazed by these students and how they have adopted your project. Thank you so much to Hug High for changing the world one day at a time. Keep on Keepin' On!

I'm wondering about our blog readers....did you do something nice, or see something that reminded you of Carter today?

May 17, 2011

One Year Ago

Dear Carter,
One year ago today we were making all of the last minute preparations for your surgery. If only we would have known that these were the last days we had at home with you. I would have done things so different.

These pictures were taken on this same day.

We took you on a walk up to Grandma and Grandpa's house to water the garden. It was actually your very first "real" walk, and I had no idea it would be your last. Although you didn't look too happy in this picture, you LOVED it. I wish we could have gone on more walks together.

I miss you so SO much today. Maybe tomorrow will be a little better.
Goodnight my sweet baby Jay.

May 16, 2011

The Beefcake Gets Into A Jam

Dear Carter,
We're still working hard on our Random Acts Of Carter, and it seems that this project is really working! If any of our readers have a story to submit we would LOVE to hear them! I know of a couple of projects in the works, and can't wait to share them with everybody. Team Carter has some amazing members, that's for sure!!

Our new puppy, Brutus (the beefy cake) has been keeping us on our toes. He is amazing therapy for me, and even though he won't cuddle with me as much as I would like, he still manages to put a smile on my face. That's his job after all! Today he even managed to give me a different perspective on things.

This afternoon I found this as I walked into my Kitchen.

That is Mikey's clothes hamper which WAS downstairs in his room. It wasn't full of very many clothes, but enough to make it heavy for such a small puppy. Brutus must have been wrestling around down there and his collar got caught on the fabric. I'd imagine he felt stuck, but instead of calling for help he decided just to carry that heavy load around with him. He managed to bring it up the stairs, and was trying to get it out of the doggy door when I found him. At this point his spirit was broken because he had wrapped the loose fabric around part of the doggy door and was just plain stuck. I freed him, and he thanked me with lots of Pug kisses.

It occurred to me afterward that I was like Brutus a lot during this last year...not so much the squished nose and mouth breathing, but I tried to carry that heavy load without asking for help. I tried to just deal with my grief, and I didn't ask God for help. I felt like I just had to continue on carrying it until I got to the point where I was just plain stuck and my spirit was broken. I finally asked God to help me with this heavy load, and you know what? Most of the time I feel like he listened, and hasn't exactly freed me. He has at least lightened the load a bit.

There are other times when I feel like I'm right back at that spot by the doggy door waiting to be freed.

Maybe it's those times when I'm just not asking loud enough.

May 14, 2011

A Test....Really?

Dear Carter,
Today was a tough day for me. It didn't start out that way, but sometimes that's just how it starts out all nice and pleasant and then I feel like I've been kicked in the gut with the missing you. It will always be like this, but it's just part of me now. I've accepted it which makes it a lot easier. At least most of the time.

I've always had the hardest times around special needs kids, and today was the day that God chose to test me on this.

While we were at the park for Mikey and Jovie's soccer games, I spotted a special needs boy who was probably in his teens sitting on the grass. Of course I immediately thought of you, and how that could have been you one day. Instead of letting myself get sad over missing you, I decided to immediately shift my focus to being thankful for the time we did have together. It worked...I said a little prayer for the boy, and went on with my day.

Then as I was walking Jovie to the restroom, I came across a little girl with Cerebral Palsy who was also playing on the grass right beside her wheelchair. Her mommy was loving and cuddling with her, and I felt myself get the little feeling of jealousy. I shifted my focus to thankfulness again, said a little prayer for the girl, and went on with my day.

After Mikey's soccer game we went to grab some lunch. While we were waiting in line, I noticed a girl in front of us with Down syndrome. She was a sweet thing and made me smile. I didn't feel any jealousy or sadness, so I was quite proud of myself. I just enjoyed being around her for our short period of time, and then went on with my day. It was at this point when I decided that God was putting me to the test today for some reason, but I had no idea that he still had more in store for me.

Later tonight, we went to church. It was a church that we attend sometimes, but we don't go there too often. As we sat down in the pew, I spotted a little boy with Down syndrome about five rows in front of us. When he turned to look in our direction, I felt the lump form in my throat.

Why? Why was God testing me like this today? Why?

He was the cutest little thing. He was about three years old. He was playing with his mommy, but that wasn't the hard part for me.

He had a trach.

Really God, Really?

That was it for me. I couldn't hold back the emotion anymore, and I spilled a lot of tears right there in the church. There was the trach staring back at me from five rows ahead. I didn't hear a word of the mass because I couldn't stop thinking about the trach. This little boy's situation was completely different from yours...he was even on room air, and except for his mommy having to suction him several times, it didn't slow him down one bit. Now I KNOW...I KNOW that a trach was NOT the right thing for you, but it's so SO hard when there is a smiling happy child staring right back at you with the trach. I had a little conversation with God, and I knew that I was supposed to be thankful, say a prayer, and go on with my day.

I tried, but it just wouldn't come. Instead I was full of anger, jealousy, and sadness, but as I sit here tonight and type this those feelings are starting to fade. Maybe by morning I'll be ready to be thankful again, but for tonight I'm going to be wondering why I was put to the test today. I love you so much baby boy. I am missing you a lot today, and I hope you know it.

May 13, 2011

We're Still Here!

Dear Carter,
Ughhh, I wanted to update the blog last night, but Blogger was down for me until this afternoon. I hated that I couldn't update because I have SO much to tell.
First, I decided to share your story on this website:

I really liked that even though it's a pregnancy/infant loss website, they end with the word Hope. Here's the link if you'd like to check it out: Carter's Story

I got to see one of my favorite people last night. Her name is Tiffany, and she shared with me her Random Act Of Carter. Her family happened to stumble upon a baby duck who was in an area which was not native to ducks. The poor little duckie didn't look so good, so they took him to the vet. The vet told them that he would be OK, but needed some TLC so needless to say they now have a new pet duck!

That is little Sadie holding him, and his name is Carlos...isn't he cute?
And here's an update from the High School that has taken on your project as their own. As of today, they now have 1,221 good many that they had to move to the window! Yesterday, Ms. McNulty's class each wrote a love poem to their future children in honor of you. And on to my favorite part...on May 30th at 11:55 am there will be 1,380 kids singing Louis Armstrong 's song " what a wonderful world" for our Random Acts of Carter day finale. The kids said they were going to sing loud enough for the whole city to hear it.
Thank you so much to the students at Hug High. You are changing the world!

May 11, 2011

And So It Continues

I don't even know where to start because it seems like there is so much going on! I'm ECSTATIC by all of the messages I've been getting. Thank you so much for all of your continued support. it is definitely making this hard time in our lives a lot easier by knowing that our baby boy is truly making a difference.
First, let's start with April. She is an amazingly talented seamstress who has held a huge auction for Carter in the past. She managed to raise over $800 for Operation Smile in his name. She has already done so SO much for Carter, and we are incredibly thankful. April is offering up another auction with 100% of the proceeds benefitting Operation Smile. It starts on Friday night, so please PLEASE check it out. The colors are from her "Carter" collection and are simply beautiful. You can find the auction here: Kings Of The Castle .

Next, remember the board from the High School the other day? Lila's class began a Random Acts Of Carter board and pledged to fill it up with post-it notes stating any good deeds they have done for Carter. It started out looking like this... and today, it looks like this!!
That's 243 beautiful things for Carter Jay, and we're only on Day 3!! Amazing!
Not only that, but Lila sent me this message: May 30th will be Carter day at Hug High. Kids will be signed up to pledge to spend the whole day making the world a better more beautiful place ! I am speechless! Thank you Hug High!!

Kristen from The Princess And The Tornado posted a comment on our blog: My 5 yr old and hubby were going to the cemetary today with intentions of putting flowers on her grandmother's grave. (I was home with napping Max.) They knew there were already some flowers on it from her cousins, so instead, she opted for a balloon - a big balloon with a butterfly on it!! Totally made me think of Carter :) .
Thank you Kristen...send our love to Max and Piper!

Your girl, Kathy, let us know that she has been making several small donations to different charities. Thank you Kathy!

Jenn let us know that she purchased something that somebody else needed just to spread a little bit of beautiful around. Thank you so much Jenn!

I have a few more exciting things to announce, but I don't want to make this a monster long post. Thank you again to everybody who is helping to celebrate our baby boy.

May 10, 2011

If Love Could Have Saved You

Dear Carter,
We're still keepin' on with your project. I can't believe how many people are pledging to participate. Every day it seems that something new pops up!
I really wanted to recognize your cousin, Samantha, today. All of your cousins love you so much baby boy, but Samantha....well, she has a special love for you. Samantha is thirteen, and man has she loved you ever since the moment you were born. She was one of the very first people to start making things for you, and to show her love for you. I know that she misses you so very much, so she does things.....lots of things to show you how much! Sam doesn't need your project to keep you in her heart, and to make things more beautiful. She just does it on her own. Here's a rock that she brought over on Mother's Day. She wants to put it on your grave, but we're waiting for the weather to get a little better (maybe tomorrow?)

It says that If Love Could Have Saved You, You Would Have Lived Forever.

How true is that?! This just scratches the surface of the things that this girl has done for you. She used her own money (remember she's only 13) to purchase a Lily for the Easter services at her church. It even had your name on the ribbon. She's currently saving up money to make a donation to her church's rose garden so that they will put a plaque in there with your name on it.

Samantha has also managed to save up over $150 to go toward a tree she wants to make for The Festival Of Trees this year. She plans to ask local businesses for donations to help with it too.

We are so, SO lucky to have Samantha as a part of Team Carter. Thank you for all you do girl, we're incredibly proud of you!

When I opened up my Facebook account this morning, I was excited to see that there is a contest being held by KSL news. Basically, they are giving a $20,000 donation to the charity that gets the most votes. I thought it had to be a sign when I saw that your hospital, Primary Childrens, is in the running. I quickly voted, then posted, and persuaded a bunch of my friends to do the same. It felt like we were all doing it for you baby! Another Random Act Of Carter!

May 9, 2011

We Are Wicked!!

Dear Carter,
I shared this video about a month ago on Facebook and just barely learned how to put it on the blog for the people who aren't members. If you have seen it, why not watch it again for a quick review because it is DANG COOL!
This video was made by Wicked Audio for the Operation Smile 5K, and if you ask me, I would tell you that it features Team Carter lol! How many members can you spot?!

Just a word about Wicked Audio, if you are in need of some awesome headphones, then you need to check these out! They were giving out free pairs as a sponsorship for Operation Smile, and I must say that these headphones rock...almost as much the company does! We got the ear buds, and they came in several, teal, black, green, and white.

I got a couple more pictures for The Random Acts Of Carter today, and I'll share them later. If you have a story to share...remember you can email me at teamcarterjay at gmail dot com

May 8, 2011

Random Acts Of Carter Day 2

Dear Carter,
We're on Day 2 of your project, and I'm so thrilled with all of the stories we've been getting. I hope that we can keep them coming and spread the word. Thank you so much to everyone who is participating. I think we really are making the world more beautiful!

I kept on seeing things of beauty throughout the day, and of course they all related to you. First, I saw something beautiful when I noticed a couple of people wearing your bracelets. These are new friends who I had given your bracelets to earlier in the week, and was surprised to see that they were still wearing them. I felt the pride swell. Later in the day we had to make a trip to Wal-Mart where we donated $5 to Primary Children's Medical Center (your hospital). Your brother and sister put coins in a big bank for your hospital too. These are little things, but I'm hoping they'll all add up. To finish off the night, I was blessed to have a conversation with a family friend who I have known since I was little. She also has two twin babies up in Heaven with you. It was so good to connect with another person on that level, and hear her story since it has been 27 years since she said goodbye to her angels. She may not know it, but she gave me a lot of hope and strength that I needed right before Mother's Day. Thank you Pam!

Our friends Jenn and Yan sent us this picture of a butterfly on a jungle gym at the park. Here's what she had to say about it:
At the park with Yan, and this beautiful butterfly would not leave me alone. I think he came to tell me to wish his mama a Happy Mother's Day!!!
So So sweet! Thank you!

Jennifer sent us this picture that her 7 year old daughter, Natalie, drew. She said that she was going to draw her very best butterfly ever for Carter. Isn't it beautiful?! Thank you so much Natalie! A bracelet is on the way for you little sweetie!!

Then Aunt April sent me this picture of some reusable bags that are being sold at Smith's. I'm totally stocking up on these! Do you see Carter all over it?

We love you little Carter Jay, and can't wait to see other ways in which people make the world a little less ugly for you. Thank you to everyone who is participating!

May 7, 2011

Day One Of The Carter Project

Dear Carter,
Friday was day one of The Random Acts Of Carter, and I must say that I was overwhelmed with the response we have gotten on this project. I have gotten several messages from people telling me that they are participating, and we've already gotten a couple of stories submitted. PLEASE keep them coming if you've got them. It makes us all so proud to see that our little boy is spreading his beauty one person at a time.
Here's how our journey started. Yesterday your daddy participated in a 5K for cousin Emily's school. Check out this picture...Emily, Daddy, and Grandma all got certificates for placing in their age groups. Team Carter represented!While we were there, a man noticed our shirts and told us that he had heard of Team Carter before and that one of his relatives had a son with a chromosomal disorder. It was pretty amazing to hear somebody say that they had heard about you. It's like we have a famous son!
As we were leaving the race, Grandma found this penny on the ground. You were there giving us one of your random acts! I also got a message on my facebook wall from Lila yesterday. She is a teacher who I worked with at the junior high before Jovie was born, but she now lives in a different state. I haven't seen her in quite awhile, but she and I are facebook friends. Here's what she had to say:

We have begun our Random Acts of Carter board. My class has pledged to do one nice thing each day. Their goal is to fill the walls of the room with post its describing their actions. They hope to get the whole school in on it and cover the halls with good deeds and beautiful things.

Here is a picture of the board...we can't wait to see it all covered in Random Acts Of CarterMany thanks to Lila and her class. It looks great! You have no idea how proud we were to see this.

We love you so much Carter, and we are excited to see how this all unfolds. I have more stories to share, and I promise to. Stay tuned for more!

May 5, 2011

The Random Acts Of Carter

Dear Carter,
Look at that picture of you! It's like you're keeping a secret from us, and you can't wait to fill us in. This was taken just a few weeks before your surgery, so maybe you knew that you were going to be with Jesus. I believe that would be something to smile about...even if it meant we would be left missing you. I can't believe that we are coming up on one year without you.

It's no secret that these next few weeks will be tough for our family. I feel the need to do something to shift the focus off of being depressed that you died to celebrating that you are still living within us.

Remember my post the other day about everybody needing to Quit Being So Dang Ugly? . I decided that since you were so beautiful, there had to be a way to spread that beauty around a little bit right?! The world was so amazingly beautiful while you were here, and I think it should still be that way now that you're in Heaven.

The first thought that I had was that I could just beg and plead with everyone to donate to Operation Smile in your name, but it seems like I ask people to do that all.the.time. I wanted this to be something that EVERYBODY could do. Something that didn't require money. Something that even your brother and sister could participate in. So, this morning when I woke up with an idea heavy on my mind...I KNEW that I had to act on it TODAY.

So readers, I'm asking you to help me out with this. No worries! This is going to be easy as pie!

Here we go! Are you ready?? Announcing:

From now until May 30th (Carter's Angel Day and Memorial Day how fitting is that?!) We are going to be working on a project for Carter. As you can see, we've dubbed it The Random Acts Of Carter.
I'm asking that you help make the world a little less ugly in honor of our baby boy. If you are asking yourself how to do that, then here are a few ideas, but I would love to see what else you can come up with!

1. You could try to be a little more patient and understanding with somebody when you would normally be a little ugly to them.

2. You could think of Carter when you see something beautiful, or create something beautiful in his name.

3. You could do at least one act of kindness in Carter's name. It can be something simple like helping out a friend in need, or something bigger like donating to a charity (there I go again lol!)

and please think of Carter while you are doing any of these things.

I am going to be following suit with this, and I plan to blog my journey along the way.

I would be lying if I said I came up with this all on my own, but I actually read of a similar project over at Dear Stevie , and I wanted to follow her example. Isn't it cool to think that Carter can still change the world today?

I would also like for you to share your story about Your Random Act Of Carter (it would be even better with pictures!). I can keep you anonymous if you would like. I want to post them on the blog to show that this is really working...that Carter is spreading beauty. You can comment on here, blog about it (but let me know so I can link to it :), email me at teamcarterjay at gmail dot com , or message me through Carter's facebook page.

Please help me spread the word by blogging/facebook/word of mouth. I'd like to get as many people stamping out the ugliness for Carter as possible.

I appreciate each and every one of you for loving Carter and continuing to show support and love to our family. Thank you so much! I can't wait to see where this journey will lead us!