tomorrow is joy's birthday.
each year during this time i feel like i am under a raincloud.
i am not myself.
i cry.
i get irritated.
i am impatient.
i am anxious.
i am edgy.
everything just seems more difficult.

even seven years later i see and feel my grief manifest itself in so many ways.
i am so thankful for our three girls, 
but cannot help but wonder what our life would be with four.

janey looks like joy.
i am so thankful for that gift.  
through her i will get to see what my firstborn would grow up to be.

tomorrow we will celebrate her.
in an unexpected way.
an abundantly blessed way.
a way that only God could have orchestrated for us.

for that my heart is happy.

but i really miss her.

so today i am crafting,
while it is raining outside.
under my own little raincloud.
joy's little sisters will wear these tomorrow as new memories are captured.

then we will let seven pink balloons fly to heaven.
and eat cupcakes.
and wonder what birthdays are like with Jesus.


  1. Awww Julie...that made me cry. I can't even fathom what this day each year must be like for you. My heart breaks as I imagine the pain and hurt you must feel.

    Your shirts and flowers are darling! And the boots are so sassy and fun!! I hope tomorrow fills your hearts with happy memories!

    I'll be thinking of you...

    Lots of love,


  2. What you're doing is so special! Made my eyes tear up a little bit. I can't imagine the pain you must feel, but will be thinking of you tomorrow.

    I love the shirts and flowers!!!

  3. love the pic with the new rain boots! I get the same way around the twins b-day, it is weired! 7 years! Crazy!!!!

  4. Big hugs to you, Julie!! I just cannot imagine. I am sorry, but glad your heart is still so full of Joy.
    Love the shirts!!

  5. wow. You brought tears to my eyes. Hugs aren't enough I know, but hug your three girls a little tighter tomorrow. What a sweet thing to do, cupcakes and ballons :).

  6. Julie- So beautiful. I will be thinking of all of you tomorrow with your darling little shirts, balloons and cupcakes. I know that Joy will be smiling with you. Lori

  7. I'll be thinking of you all tomorrow and praying for you on this memorable, yet difficult day. Stay strong and continue to look to the Lord who is all powerful and ready to comfort us at all times.
    Love Jessica. :)
    P.S. Hopefully if you haven't yet received the magazine, you will soon.

  8. Oh Julie, I cried too. And I can only imagine that a birthday spent with Jesus is filled with more happiness than we can even dream of.
    I too will be thinking of you tomorrow.

  9. Julie,
    I just popped in to look at your blog after seeing that you signed up for my swap. I just wanted you to know how much this post touched me. You are a special woman to have an angel already watching over you daily. I am sorry for your pain and your hurt. My sister lost a daughter when she was six. But, we still feel her close to us as I am sure your Joy is close to you. Enjoy tomorrow! Feel her presence. Love to you,


  10. I will be thinking about you and praying for you! :) I can't wait to find out what birthdays with Jesus are like! :)

  11. Aww Julie. I am so sorry for tomorrow for you. I am similar in my actions when Faith's birthday comes. I know that when I began to read your blog and went thru the past posts I read about the balloons. I loved it. I had the girls and I do that for Faith's birthday too. You are such an inspiration!

    The shirts and flowers are fabulous!

  12. thinking of you and praying for you.

  13. Julie,
    You don't know me but I've been reading your blog for a while now. When I read your entry today, I started to cry. My son died five years ago and I know exactly how you feel. I do the same thing when it's David's Birthday. I'll be praying for you and your family. I'll also be remembering your precious Joy.
    God Bless,

  14. Just wanted you to know I am thinking about you today. It sounds like perfect way to remember Joy on this day..and WOW! what must birthdays with Jesus be like!!!! (HUG)

  15. Such a beautiful post. I have often wondered where your blog title came from, today I know. God bless you and your beautiful family, all 6 of you.

  16. i love how you celebrate Joy. i'm sure my caylin is friends with your Joy. They probably craft together and make things for Jesus:)

  17. I have read your blog for a while now but haven't ever posted.
    I hope that Joy's birthday is a day filled with happy memories.
    Our baby daughter died just over a year ago, since then we have had another baby. Like you, I hope to share Olivia's memories with her little sister.
    you'll be in my thoughts today.

  18. I will be keeping you and your family in my thoughts- I know it must be so incredibly hard.. but I also know you all are truly blessed in so many ways! xoxoxox

  19. dear julie,

    i read your blog daily & love it! i have a 2 year old daughter & she is my world. i lost my brother when i was 15 and i know how hard his birthday is every year. although i don't know the pain from the loss of a child i do know pain from losing a sibling. i can't imagine how hard it is for my parents or for you. my thoughts & prayers are with you today. try to enjoy those 3 little miracles of yours!!
    xo, dixie

  20. Julie, we will be praying for you tomorrow. We think of you often. I am amazed by all the work God continues to do in your family. I know there is a beautiful girl in heaven just waiting for the right time to see her mommy. What a special girl Joy is. I think you are right, tomorrow will be a special day for you and your family. The outfits for the girls are just right as always. We love you guys.

    Kelly Smith

  21. Thinking of you today and saying a prayer for all of you.

  22. Gosh I feel so sad now...I had no idea...I thought Joy was your name...being a newbie I am learning. I got all teary eyed over sweet to remember her...

    I think your little Joy will be waiting for those balloons to reach up there so she can play and share with all the other little friends she has with her. What a sweet way to celebrate her life in heaven.

  23. It is just as if you were writing my life at this moment. Next week our Jonne should celebrate his second birthday.
    Thanks for sharing!

  24. Lovely post. Birthdays with Jesus will be wonderful!
    Vintage Lily

  25. Do you sell those initial shirts???? I would love one!!