Category Archives: dear lucy.

dear jude & lucy.

jude & lucy,

you could never possibly know how much i love you. my dad used to always say, “you’ll never know how much i love you until you have kids of your own.” and that is so true. but yet, i still don’t think you’ll understand it because you, jude & lucy, are both just so YOU. you’re perfect, in every way. i mean, not literally perfect. you’re annoying sometimes. you’re loud, you fight, you make a mess, you don’t listen, you drive me nuts. but you are perfectly YOU. you’re just as i’d have you.

i had one of those moments tonight when i just wanted to press a button and freeze time. jude, i found out today that kindergarten registration is next week and that really got me worked up. lucy, you’ll be having your first ever school experience next year and i can’t imagine leaving you with someone other than family. so after dinner i was cleaning up the kitchen, daddy was playing guitar and you guys were dancing and eating candy canes and i just cried. i cried because i don’t want things to change. i cried because there are so many moments that i never want to forget, that moment being one of them. i cried because life is short and fleeting and i know that in the blink of an eye things will be so very different.

jude & lucy, these precious moments are what makes life worth living. i never, ever want to forget how completely perfect the two of you are right this very second…innocent, carefree, confident and safe and loved in the comfort of our home’s walls. i love you way past the moon, beyond mars, and into infinity!





dear lucy.


i can’t even describe how adorable your face is. your cheeks are so squishy. i could kiss them all day long. i know i’m partial, but seriously, you have the cutest face. you’re like that classic cute little girl in commercials or something. i’d think that even if i wasn’t your mom. your bangs, your huge brown eyes, your kissable cheeks and super high voice. i think you get the point. but i just never want to forget how insanely perfect your little two year old face is.

i love getting to know you. you are so sweet and nurturing. you’re also bossy. and you’re quite an instigator. you do this thing where you pretend to be mad and you’ll put your hands on your hips and frown. it’s hilarious.

you are a terrible eater. i forced you to take the tiniest little bite of a green pepper today (obviously i bribed you with a chocolate kiss) and i just about peed my pants. i think that’s the first vegetable you’ve ever eaten, with the exception of baby food.

you love to sing. we sing every night before bed. usually its jesus loves me, oh how i love jesus, the raindrop song, the butterfly song or something like that. you woke up in the night once recently and had a very croup like cough. you sounded terrible…wheezing with every breath. i stayed in your room for a while to try and calm you down. you tossed and turned for a while and then said, “mama, sing to me.” it was so precious. so i sang one of the usuals…”jesus, jesus, jesus. there’s just something about that name.” it reminds me of my dad and my childhood so i like singing it to you.

you’ve been quite an actress lately. you’ll act out the “do you want to build a snowman?” song from frozen and it cracks me right up. you do it just like they do in the movie, including going to the closet doors and pretending your ana talking to elsa. it is the cutest thing ever.

a couple weeks ago meme was downstairs visiting. you were sitting next to her at the island. you leaned over and put your arm around her and said “meme, you’re my best friend ever!” we just about died. so now you say it quite often to a variety of people and its just as cute every single time.

i hope we are best friends, lucy. perhaps not all the time, because i’m not supposed to be your friend…i’m supposed to be your mom. but i know that if i put the hard work in while you’re young, the reward will be a great friendship. i so look forward to it. i want you to always be yourself with me, lucy, and i will do the same.

jude is obsessed with teenage mutant ninja turtles right now. its rubbed off on you a tiny bit. you play ninja’s with him and its sweet of you. you think jude is the coolest kid ever, and you’re right, he is. he loves the theme song and sings it constantly so everyone in the family knows it by heart now. i was singing it the other day and you piped in, “michelangelo is a party dude…AHHHHH!” it was hilarious.

like i said, you think jude is the best. you want to be just like him. i love overhearing the conversations you have. for the most part, he is really sweet to you. he calls you “sweetie” often and it just about makes me die. i love it. he’ll be playing with something, or talking, and you’ll pipe in and say “oh jude, that’s so cool!” its the most adorable thing. you fight like crazy, at times, and other times you give and take and play what the other one wants to play and those moments are wonderful.

you’re so affectionate. you love to give hugs and kisses. you randomly come up and wrap your chubby, soft arms around my neck and its one of my favorite things ever. when daddy leaves for work in the morning you run the length of the kitchen to jump into his arms. and every morning i tell myself that i will never forget it.

that’s why i write these letters, really. i’m always telling myself “this is a moment that i never want to forget.” but life is crazy and sometimes i do forget. so i will continue to write. so we can both remember life as it is right now. because i want to remember you like this forever.





dear lucy.

dear lucy,

it’s been a while since i’ve written. and you have changed SO much. i often look at your sweet, pudgy face and think “i want to remember her like this forever.” you are just so perfect, lulu. don’t get me wrong. you have your moments. you are naughty and you love to be a bug. but you are still just so perfect.

i kept peeking at you in the rearview mirror on the way to gramma’s. your hair was combed and you had on a flowery summer dress. UGH. you should be a model! you’re totally going to be a heart breaker someday. i think you’ll play hard to get and make the boys chase you. god help us.

you’ve turned into quite the singer. your favorites are: the bumblebee song, the itsy bitsy spider and the birdie song. you sing along with me and do all the motions. it’s the cutest thing! i often hear you singing while playing outside or sitting on the floor with your toys.

gramma got you some new pink sandals. you are SO proud of them. you like pink. i don’t. but that’s ok. at the liver walk this weekend you asked the balloon maker to make you a kitty. you pointed to the pink balloon in his apron. you’re kind of a girly girl but you’re kind of a tomboy. you love playing with jude’s cars and trucks but you also love your babies and princess dress. you’re a good mash-up.

you are an insane sleeper. daddy and i love checking in on you before we go to bed because we always find you in the funniest positions. which also makes you a terrible co-sleeper. we’ve done it on occasion (camping, hotels) and it is not fun.

jude is one of your favorite people. you adore him. you love to copy him and you also love to bug him. you know just what buttons to push! i try to explain to him that its just what little sisters do, but he still gets just as angry. although he is a great big brother to you. he loves to help you and he calls you “sweetie” which is just so adorable.

you love to say “superman saves the day!” you always talk about snow monsters, mickey mouse, and dragons. we always laugh when you say “no hug! no kiss!” and “no way, jose!”

the other morning i was getting ready for work. i heard you get up so i went to your door to say hi. i leaned down and you touched my hair and said, “i like your hair!”

we went to uncle byron’s camp over the 4th of July weekend. we had a blast. you loved being in the water and throwing rocks. on the first night we slept in the camper. you were kind of freaked a bit so i slept with you and daddy slept with jude. you kept reaching over and touching my face to make sure i was there. then you grabbed my hand and held it until we both fell asleep. i loved it. we ended up having to go inside in the middle of the night because it was thundering and lightning. on the second night, we tried to put you and emmy to bed upstairs in your pack ‘n plays. you guys cried and cried and cried. finally, we all ended up heading to bed. once we got upstairs you would not be quiet! you were such a chatterbox. emmy was settling down but you kept trying to talk to her. you’d say, “emmy! watch this!” and “emmy! go to bed!” you kept singing the paw patrol song, too. “paw patrol! go, go, go. we’ll be there on the double…whenever you’re in trouble!” you were acting so quirky. it was entertaining.

ohhhh lucy, you are so squishy and lovable and sweet. you’re also quite a little sassafras. you remind me so much of me when i was little. you are my joy, lucy, and i just love you right to pieces!



Photo-5 10350623_10101735805818079_981989636034198396_n 10301603_10101703480173929_8702869691146565001_n 10426901_10101731565066579_6499709017635405318_n 10457849_10101743303547569_4032512523586440145_n



dear lucy: the story of you.

dear lucy,

its an appropriate time to write all of this down seeing as you are turning two this weekend. two…WHAT?! that has flown, in a way, but then when i think back to where we were in life when you were born it seems like forever ago. this one will be a hard one to write, lulu.

i remember when daddy and i started talking about having another kid. jude was almost a year and a half. he was easy and we knew we wanted another not too far into the future. so we went for it. you came about instantly. i could feel it right away. i was turned off by certain foods. i had to force myself to eat so i wouldn’t feel sick. i couldn’t go far without my water bottle.

brian and leanne and the girls were here visiting. the day they left i took a pregnancy test. it was july. daddy and i sat and waited for the results. i was nervous. then we saw it…PREGNANT! ahhhhh. even though i knew i was already, reality hit me. i was SCARED. and excited. daddy was too. jude was clueless.

aunt megan and uncle nick came over that night. we told them the news and they were happy. we urged them to try for another and i think our excitement stuck because you and emmy are a month apart. we waited a little bit longer to tell other people. gramma and papa were first. papa cried, i’m sure. meme and bampy were next. we were having a family photo shoot so i wanted to save the announcement for then so cait could get it on camera. we were in the back yard figuring out picture scenes and daddy said, “how about we do one where we’re all pointing at gretchen’s belly?” the look on bampy’s face was priceless and i’m so glad cait was there to capture it. we gave hugs all around and meme and bampy were so excited.

we visited the doctor and got pictures. you were growing just as you should. my belly got bigger and i was tired. i was more sick this time around and having a toddler to chase around with you in my belly was hard. we got the news that aunt megan was pregnant and we were so happy that you’d be close in age just like jude and bella.

fall came and bampy got sick. i quit my job, a job that i loved, to work with bampy before it was too late. but his body disagreed and his condition got worse. in october we had a big meeting in boston with the liver transplant team to qualify him for the transplant list. bampy never came home from that meeting. the night before we were supposed to go home he went to the emergency room in the middle of the night because of pain in his abdomen. he was admitted and tests were run. we stayed in boston a little longer. the doctors were shocked at how fast his disease had progressed in such a short amount of time. it wasn’t safe for him to return home so he stayed in boston where he could get the best care. the rest of us went home to get back to our kids and jobs and figure out a game plan.

to make a long story short, we made several trips to boston that fall. some were at the drop of a hat, thinking that it was the end for bampy. other trips were because he begged us to visit. the stress that my pregnant body went through during that time was abundant. i was worried, terrified, sad. i was desperately hoping that these emotions were not affecting you; that you were safe and sound within me and unchanged by the storm i was enduring. at 20 weeks i had an ultrasound to check on your growth and to find out your gender. aunt kate watched jude while i drove to meet daddy at the hospital. i was so nervous. i was hoping for a girl. for something different than jude and for someone to do girl things with. but then again, i was hoping for a boy. i was comfortable with boys. i knew how to be mom to a boy.

we got situated and took a peek at you. then she said it…ITS A GIRL. tears came to my eyes. i was happy…i was intimidated. how was i going to deal with a girl? how was i ever going to love this baby as much as i love jude? i felt guilty; guilty to be bringing a baby into our family and taking my attention from jude. but at the same time i felt excited for a change. i couldn’t wait to meet you in real life and see what you looked like. the ultrasound tech told us that you had hair…tons and tons and tons of hair. more hair than she had ever seen. we laughed.

daddy went back to work and we made our calls. i called meme and aunt megan. i called bampy who was at the hospital in boston. although emotionally and physically struggling due to the disease inside his body, bampy was so glad that i called. he loved it when i called. he was happy to hear that you were a girl and that you were healthy. i told him your name was lucy.

november came it it got cold. i’ll never forget that day. i was out with jude and got a call from meme. her voice was serious. the doctors had called and things were not good. we had to go to boston and we had to go now. i panicked. i cried harder than i’ve ever cried before. i dropped jude off at gramma’s and rushed to meet meme. we got in the car and drove. the car was quiet. our minds were racing. we spoke with doctors and nurses and said we were coming fast. things were not good and bampy’s body was shutting down. he was being put on dialysis because his kidneys were failing. meme drove. we were in crisis mode.

we got to the hospital and rushed to ICU where bampy was. i’ll never forget that place and the sight as we walked into bampy’s room. he was hooked up to a million machines and his blood was running through tubes. he was watching “i love lucy”.

bampy passed away a few days later. those days were grueling, lulu. bampy, meme, aunt megan, daddy and i shared laughs, memories, pictures and songs. we cried a lot. we held hands and hugged. we were thankful and we were heartbroken. my body was exhausted from the turmoil of the situation. when i look back on it all, the only way i can describe my survival is in one word: JESUS. he carried us through. he kept you safe from the harshness of my struggles.

life went on and we adjusted. it was a hard time, lucy. i tried to focus on you and staying healthy and being a good mom. it was hard. i was exhausted emotionally, physically, spiritually. a couple months before you were due i had a conversation with my doctor. i asked that if everything was progressing like normal and i was a good candidate for induction, if i could have you on bampy’s birthday, march 22. she said yes. i was so excited!

on christmas day we got word that aunt kate was pregnant. another cousin! it was a happy time.

march came and things were looking good. i was nervous for delivery and i was terrified but excited to meet you, lucy. my little girl! i made you a million headbands and got ready for your birthday. march 22nd came and it was HOT. like 90 degrees hot. i waited and waited to get the call to go into the hospital. but it wasn’t happening. things were too slammed in the delivery room and your birth would have to wait a day. i was bummed. super bummed. bampy had a thing for birthdays and he would have LOVED sharing his with you. but life goes on.

morning came and we waited for the call to head in. things were slammed, again, but because of the amazing nurse that helped deliver jude they were able to squeeze us in. we left jude with meme who then transferred him to emily. i was sad saying goodbye to him. and i was NERVOUS. we drove to the hospital and my stomach was in knots.

we checked in and got things rolling. holy cow, it was intense. the contractions were so painful and way worse than when i had jude. i got an epidural and that helped until it was time to push. dr. bretta came in to check on me. i wasn’t quite ready to have you yet. she said she was going to go let her dog out and then come back. when she was gone, i could feel you coming. my nurse called dr. bretta and told her to hurry back…it was time. you were coming full speed and my body wanted you out. OH MAN. ouch. i vividly remember saying, “i am NEVER doing this again!” a few minutes later, you were born. you were gorgeous. you had a full head of thick, wild black hair. you weight 8 lbs 9 oz. you had thunder thighs. i loved you instantly. i couldn’t believe i ever worried for even a second about not loving you as much as i did jude. you were PERFECT. our family came in and admired you. i can’t describe how proud i felt to have taken part in creating you…such a beautiful, perfect baby. daddy couldn’t take his eyes off of you.

that night we shared a room with another mom so daddy couldn’t stay. it was just me and you. you slept in the nursery but came in a few times throughout the night. i was tired but slept well and my heart leaped when they brought you in to me. i loved holding you, feeding you, cuddling you. i remember that time in the hospital so vividly and fondly. i was sad that bampy wasn’t there to experience the joy that the family was feeling, but i like to think that he was looking down on us and that he caught a glimpse of your beauty.

there are so many reasons why you are special to me. but first and foremost, lucy, you are the most perfect gift sent to me during the worst time of my life. you are my light. my anchor of hope in the fiercest storm. your sweet little face and perfect personality remind me of god’s amazing love and that he sent you to me when i needed you MOST. i have a special connection with jude because he was my first. he made me a mom and he taught me about love. i never thought that connection could be matched, but you totally made that happen, girl. my connection with you is just as amazing in a totally different way.

i love you, lucy mae keezer. the past two years with you has been seriously awesome. you blow my mind every day and i just can’t get enough of you. “i am the luckiest”. honest and true, girlfriend.

happy 2nd birthday!



a long nine months.IMG_2193lucy mae keezer.some of my favorite things.1625544_10101535500232079_1468827570_n

dear lucy.

dear lucy,

oh my goodness, girl. you are TOO MUCH. your bangs, chubby, kissable cheeks, your cute scowl, big brown eyes and perfect white teeth…AH! i can’t take it, you are just so adorable. honestly, lulu, you are that spunky little girl that should be in commercials. that’s what uncle scott says. and its true. i just want to gobble you up. even when you say, “no, mama!” and air swat at me i just can’t help but smile because you are so cute while being naughty.

i know there will come a time when you make me see red. but not just yet.

you LOVE jude. you’ve picked up on some of his habits, good and bad. you love to tease him and instigate fights. you grab rudolph when you know you shouldn’t and you walk slowly by his face to make sure he’s watching. then you RUN while he loses his mind and chases after you.

your favorite word is no.

i’m not sure you’re going to be a morning person like mama and jude. that keezer blood, i guess. it takes you a while to warm up and you’re often grumpy towards either me or daddy.

lucy, you have your own way of talking. jude was speaking in full (and long) sentences by this age, but you’re a little different. and that’s ok. you can barely get a word in edgewise! some things you say as clear as a bell and other things we have to translate. marshmallow’s are “dubba-dub”. not sure where you came up with that.

i was upstairs the other day doing something. i could hear you saying, “mama, where are you?!” like you were the clearest speaker on earth! you pick and chose what you want to say well.

you are quite possibly THE PICKIEST EATER EVER. holy crap. i thought jude was bad when he was your age, but he’s got nothing on you. you are obsessed with cereal. kix and cheerios, to be exact. you often eat 3 or 4 bowls in the morning.

you are independent. you know what you want and what you don’t want. you have a happy disposition and i love that about you. whining is not your thing and you recover quickly. you don’t respond to my scolding, so we’ll have to see about that.

we went away last weekend to portsmouth with gramma, papa, and aunt kate and d. we had fun! it was chaotic, obviously, but we had a great time. you love being with family. you were attached to gramma a lot. you loved chuck e. cheese and roamed the place like you owned the place. you were tired and antsy towards the end and only slept for 20 minutes on the way home.

daniel tiger and elmo are your favorite things to watch. you ask for dora a lot too, even though we don’t watch that at home.

lucy, you are such an artist. you love to color and whenever you see a pen you have to get it in your hands as soon as possible.

you love to sing and laugh. you tell jokes with jude and throw your head back while laughing at yourself. i love it so much. the barney song is probably your favorite and you sing it before you go sleep and when you wake up.

you love to show off. whenever you do something goofy you say, “mama! look!” until i look your way.

oh my cute little gal pal, i love you right to pieces! you are my JOY, lucy mae.



photo-8 IMG_8341 photo-4 photo-5 IMG_8316

%d bloggers like this: