Life Starts Now.

Living each day to the fullest, because we know first-hand just how fragile life can be.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Very Sparrow Christmas

I know it's the end of January and all, but I've been thinking about what to say about Christmas for the whole it came late. 
Christmas was very different this year.  Usually it starts before Thanksgiving, with crafting, decorating, and baking up a storm...(near hybernating) indoors with my kiddos all day...(= bliss.)  This year it started November 1st...because this year I was not home, I was working my tail off at Harry and David.  Trying my hardest not to screw up any orders, pointing the public to 'that perfect Christmas gift'.....and rushing around like a chicken with my head cut-off.  Needless to say, I was not in the Christmas spirit.  AT ALL.  I love my job.  I love what I do....but I do not necessarily love doing it over 40 hours a week...and not during my hybernation season. :)  But I did, and we made it through.
As the nation knows, (thanks to ABC & Extreme Home Makeover,) we are a Sparrow family.  I love everything that Sparrow Clubs stand for.  Joel and I were able to go to Hedrick Middle School in early December to say hello to the kids and give an update on Joel's recovery.  It was overwhelming to watch them run up to us, and call him by name.  They took pictures of him with their readily-available cell phones, and gave him high-fives.  I can't describe what it's like to have perfect strangers care about you.  I can't describe it.  It's not something that can fit into words.  We knew that Sparrow Clubs would be blessing our family for Christmas with a gift for each of our children, a project called 'Bless-A-Nest.'  We emailed them a few suggestions of things the kids might like, with no hopes of what actually ended up happening... A CAR LOAD OF GIFTS.  And checks.  And cash.  And giftcards.  There were far more items for each child than we put on a 'suggestion list.' When you hear the saying, "It's the thought that counts," this is one of those times where it means exponentially more than it sounds.  The kids didn't open just loads of toys on Christmas morning, they opened gifts that were specifically picked out for complete strangers.  Someone bought a miniature backpack full of books for Joel.  An art set for Mia.  Perfect flannel pajamas for Logan. All of the kids were blessed beyond what we ever predicted.  My mom and I peeked at a few before Christmas (they were wrapped,) to make sure that there were no duplicates....and we cried and cried together; so touched at the gesture handed our way.  One gift in particular was my favorite....a little sippy cup, placed in a box, and marked "from cyrus" a child's writing. 

Of all things, a sippy cup was the one present that had me sobbing my eyes out the most.  Someone was thinking of us over the hectic holiday season.  Having a fragile child can feel so isolating, and while they may not have fully understood the things we've experienced, they wanted us to know that someone out there cares about us. 

If you have ever participated in Bless-A-Nest, or know someone that has, please give them a hug from me.  'Bless a nest' is an understatement.  Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.  The thought that counts, did... more than you'll ever know.


  1. Thanks for making me cry....yet again. :) Blessings sweet family!!


  2. So glad to hear that your Christmas spirit was ignited by some pretty wonderful folks. Ot truly sounds as though your Christmas was blessed!

  3. YES! It was! :) It completely turned my perspective around...reminding me of what Christmas is all about.

  4. Kari,

    I have so much respect for you and your family (especially Joel). I was also born with a heart condition (pulmonary stenosis) and required open heart surgery at two weeks of age. It scared my parents beyond belief. Believe me; better times are ahead for all. I wish nothing but health and happiness for Joel and your entire family.

    Jason Watson