Loss

It’s Beautiful

*Avery’s Memory*

The school supplies are out and the sales are beginning. This used to be my favorite part of the summer. My sister and I always loved school supply shopping! Now, as a parent, school supply shopping has a whole new meaning for me.

When I walked past the school supply aisles recently I couldn’t help but think about Avery. We lost our first child in October of 2013, but my due date was the following June. If the Lord hadn’t called Avery home, we would have a kindergartner this Fall.

I don’t think I’ll ever stop thinking about Avery and the “what ifs”. I don’t think grief ever entirely disappears, it just evolves. I no longer cry whenever I think of the baby we lost, but missed milestones are still bittersweet. I love ALL of my children, including the one we never had the privilege of meeting.

This year, (and maybe this will be a new tradition), I plan to purchase school supplies for another child in Avery’s honor. Avery’s memory isn’t sad. It’s beautiful.

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MommyCon Chicago, Uncategorized

Getting the Most Out of Your Trip to MommyCon Chicago

With MommyCon Chicago just three days away, I wanted to share some tips to help you get the most out of your time at the convention.

1. If you’re a local and/or are not staying in one of the hotels connected to the convention center, bring a stroller or extra hands (husband, best friend, mother, etc.) to help carry all your goodies around. If you purchased a Premium or VIP ticket, you will receive a gift bag upon check-in, and if you’re like most attendees you will make a couple (or several) purchases in the exhibitor hall. I attended MommyCon in 2017 without a stroller because I wore my little one, but thankfully my friend brought her stroller to carry our bags!

2. Look inside your gift bag (if you bought a ticket that includes one) when you receive it. Some vendors include coupons in the bag that are only good for a limited time. You don’t want to miss out on a discount you could have used!

3. Look at the back of your name badge! MommyCon is sponsored by many great companies, and thus is able to give away some pretty amazing prizes. All you need to do to know if you won a prize is check the back of your badge!

4. Bring a refillable water bottle and snacks for the little ones. There are water stations in the convention center, so it’s a good idea to bring a water bottle from home to save stay hydrated and save some money.

5. Check out the Babywearing Lounge. Whether you are expecting your first child or are slinging your fourth, the Babywearing Lounge is the perfect place for fit checks and to try on different types of baby carriers. The lounge will be staffed by a babywearing educator who will be able to address your needs!

6. Ask questions while shopping the exhibitor hall. The vendors are there to sell their products, and the best way to do that is to help the consumer see and understand them. If there is a company or product you’re curious about, don’t be afraid to speak to the vendor! They love answering questions and helping attendees with their products.

7. Don’t eat at the convention center. The food is fine, but the options are limited. One of my favorite area eateries is Naf Naf Grill in Rosemont. Naf Naf serves Middle Eastern specialties such as chicken shawarma, falafel, and pita, and is set up like a Chipotle. It’s cheaper and less formal than a sit down restaurant, and the food is delicious!

https://nafnafgrill.com/

Still need tickets? Use code MTJGO19 to save 10%!

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Today is the 80 year anniversary of Kristallnacht, so I want to talk about something heavy.

https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/oprf-high-school-swastika-airdrop-500151501.html?_osource=SocialFlowFB_CHBrand

This high school is down the street from my sister’s apartment. This is the third racist or anti Semitic incident in two weeks there.

We act like racism doesn’t exist anymore. We pretend a Holocaust couldn’t happen in America today. We say “we’re praying” (as we should,) but when God provides us with a platform to speak out or to help others we ignore it. Why do we do that?

I guess it’s easy to turn a blind eye when it isn’t our family members being targeted.

I don’t have all the answers. In fact I have more questions than I have solutions. I do know, however, that ignoring the problem does nothing to fix the problem.

I don’t want to have to talk to my children about racism, but I know I’m going to have to start soon.

I pray. I teach my toddler’s Sunday School class. We are faithful church members. I believe that is only the foundation though. I feel God pulling on my heart, telling me to DO something. I’m just not yet sure exactly what that “something” is.

So, let’s chat. What are some ways you talk to your children, grandchildren, or students about uncomfortable topics, like racism and anti-semitism?