Day 18 {beauty for her to remember}

I can’t believe I am even writing Day 18. My daughter and I have been in the hospital for 18 days. In this hospital room it is like time has stood still, but I know life as normal has gone on outside these walls. Our days here are the same. They have been full of waiting. It makes me think of Dr. Seuss…”Somehow you’ll escape all that waiting and staying. You’ll find the bright places where Boom Bands are playing. With banner flip-flapping once more you’ll ride high! Ready for anything under the sky. Ready because you’re that kind of guy!” Later today we are escaping all this waiting and staying…later today we are going home!!!

In all this waiting and staying I looked up what the most current Craft Hope project is….bracelets for orphans. There are two things FireCracker has loved the most while we are here: stickers and bracelets. As I thought through this I began dreaming up a fun party to throw when we get home. I’ve collected ideas and brainstormed ways I could make it a cute girly celebration….celebrating being home again and celebrating good friends. I saw this inspiration board on pinterest and thought it would be a perfect jumping off point for my bracelet making party.

First Birthday Inspiration Board

{Source: Visual Vocabulary “First Birthday Inspiration Board” found via pinterest}

My daughter’s middle name means “fair warrior”. One of our prayers for her is that she would be a voice for those that have none…that she would fight for those that can’t. There is no doubt that for years and years to come she’ll hear the story about breaking her leg and ending up in the hospital for a few weeks. Her leg will most likely always bare two little scars reminding her of this time. As I think through that I don’t want the story to end there. In the years to come when she hears the story I want there be something more than a broken bone for her to associate with this time. So in these final days at the hospital I’ve been making bracelets. Instead of throwing a cute party in our field, I’ve invited friends to stop by the hospital and make one too. When I get to leave here with my girl, I am also going to leave with a bag of handmade bracelets for children that may never know the overwhelming love from others that we have felt in this hospital. I hate being here. I hate that my tiny daughter is stuck on her back in traction. However, one day I will get to share with my daughter how even in a horribly tough circumstance God used her as a tiny girl to show His love and grace to those in deep need.

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So I got busy making bracelets and she checked them for size. We had fun in the quiet moments crafting and laughing.
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Others joined in. My grandpa even made one – which was so incredibly special to me. Thank you grandpa for doing that! I cherish this photo. My grandpa’s hands have built so many things for me…it is beautiful to see those same hands making a bracelet for a little one.
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Stuck on her back with a metal rod drilled through her leg my girl giggles when she fills her arms with bracelets. I can’t help but think that maybe a little girl who very deeply knows the pain of life without loving parents might find a few moments of joy when she places a bracelet we made on her little arm. And in this painful time for our family, we’ve discovered beauty.
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Resources:

Join the fun in making bracelets for the Orphan Project, find out details, deadlines & shipping info here

bracelet pattern by V & Co.

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  • Vanessa - I’ve never cried reading a blog but this post just made me cry! So beautifully written and well said. Thank you and congratulations on your homecoming!

  • Featurettes | visual vocabulary - [...] Laelia’s first birthday board was not exactly featured, but it was shown on Ashely Ann photography’s blog under the sycamore. She is also a monthly DIY contributor at [...]

  • craft hope - chikaustin - [...] am continually inspired by other people and their stories. If you don’t know Ashley, you really should. She is one of the most creative, loving individuals I know in the blogosphere. [...]

  • Jessie - Beautiful! What an inspiring story.
    My little ones who are almost 4 looked at your photos and announced “Aww…cute baby!”

  • Marykay - Thanks again for posting this… I just wanted to let you know that you inspired me to do this as our craft this month with my MOPS group. I haven’t counted how many we made yet but it is at least a few hundred!

  • melany - I just flipped through the “Craft Hope” book in the bookstore the other day and just about cried at the wonderfulness of it. I did not know it was a regular ongoing updated thing – I guess I probably would have figured that out if I actually read the book :-) I actually even blogged about the book as well … so now I foresee a blog update with even more exciting stuff.

  • Melissa Madden Truncale - Hi,

    My name is Melissa. I honestly just came upon your blog today. Yesterday we found out that our daughter has a condition that requires surgery and a Spica Cast to follow. My husband and I have a sense of peace already about this. We are so blessed. This is completely fixable thing.

    Yesterday I was a basket case. Today, I am done with crying (until I came across your blog), and now I am in a “do” mode. We just need to do what we have to do.

    SO, I googled “Life with a Spica cast”. Your post was the very first one that popped up. What helpful and useful and practical information. By far the best I have seen.

    I don’t even know you, but just by glancing at your posts you ooze Christ. Your family is so sweet. I know nothing about you, and you inspire me.

    Thank you for your posts.

  • leaks, tests and ‘problems’ » ashleyannphotography.com - [...] old pointed out that it was his sister’s hospital (FireCracker). He began talking about the 18 days she spent there in [...]

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