Sunday, July 6, 2014

Catching Up

     As most of you may know, we said hello and goodbye to our sweet Savannah on October 9, 2013. We spent the last few weeks of the pregnancy celebrating Savannah and helping her finish her list. It has taken us awhile to get comfortable with the idea of  blogging again, but now we would like to show you the joy and happiness of those last few weeks with Savannah.

These next posts will be mostly pictures, but we hope that they can say more than just our words.. <3

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Christmas in August

     We took a trip back home during week 32, the last one before Savannah comes.  While we thought this would be just a simple visit, our families had much more in store for us! 

     Josh, Savannah, and I were shocked when we opened the front door to Grandma and Grandpa Hurtley's house: Christmas had arrived early! The entire house had been transformed into a winter wonderland.  The tree was up and decorated, the nativity sat on the entry table, and Christmas music was playing in the background. We were greeted with big hugs and the news that Savannah's Christmas was only 2 days away.  

    The only thing that was pre-planned for the weekend was taking a trip to the circus: Quidam by Cirque du Soleil!! Josh and I love Cirque du Soleil, and this was such an exciting experience to share with Savannah.  Throughout the show Savannah was doing some crazy stunts in my belly; Josh is starting to think we have a little acrobat of our own!! 

     On our way home from the circus we made a surprise stop at the airport to pick up some very special unexpected guests... Savannah's Aunt Sarah and Uncle Justin! They flew in from Texas just to be here for Savannah's Christmas.

     All of that was on the night before Christmas! (We love that we got to spend Savannah's Christmas Eve at the circus!!)    
     The next day was Christmas and we were really looking forward to spending it with all of our family.  We took our group photos, had a delicious Christmas dinner, and our family even had special gifts for Savannah.  

Only the best dads get promoted to GRANDPA! <3
     Christmas at the Hurtley house would not be complete without the Florida snowball fight! It is a tradition that Josh's mom started years ago. Simply put: We all throw our FL snowballs (marshmallows) at each other until they get so gooey that we have to stop.  It is always tons of fun, and makes for some amazing memories! 

     We want to say how blessed we are to have such amazing families that helped to create the most memorable Christmas for sweet Savannah! Words cannot express how thankful we are for each of you and the time that you took to make every detail just right.  This truly was a magical Christmas!

     When Josh and I got home we continued Savannah's Christmas celebration by watching classic movies as well as reading her some holiday books!  It was such a sweet moment when we got to share the true meaning of Christmas with our little girl.  

     We finished the week by taking Savannah to a movie in the park.  We watched The Lorax as we ate our yummy food truck food! <3 

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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Daddy & Desserts

     "There is truly nothing sweeter than a Daddy's love!" <3

     Throughout this entire pregnancy the only things I have really been craving are fruit and juice.  I cannot seem to get enough juice!! This week we decided to take Savannah to Planet Smoothie, and introduce her to the best smoothies around.  Cocoa-banana for me, a screamsicle for Josh, and Savannah had a little of both.

     This week was a test of patience for Josh and I as we waited to find out if he had made Staff Sergeant.  Josh was scheduled to test the day after we found out about Savannah's condition, and I can only imagine all of the thoughts that were racing through his head as he set his mind on passing this year.  We eagerly awaited the results, and I will never forget the morning we found out that HE MADE IT!! Savannah wrote her daddy an email at work telling him just how proud she was of him, and how strong and courageous he was.  Later that week Savannah and I were able to celebrate Josh at his selection party. It was a special moment sitting with Savannah watching her daddy get tacked on.

     We celebrated Josh's huge accomplishment by going to the Melting Pot for cheese and chocolate! We were so excited when we found out that one of our close friends, Kathy, was working that night. She helped to make Savannah's first Melting Pot experience one to remember!!  Savannah's favorite part was the s'mores melted chocolate.  She was definitely dancing as we walked out of the restaurant!

     At the beginning of week 31 we had an ultrasound appointment as well as special lunch date with Savannah's best friend Sophie and her parents!
     We cherish every ultrasound we have and we consider it our special time with Savannah.  She is always showing us something new. This week she had her legs crossed, and we love that Savannah is already acting like a little lady!!

Pink boxes = Savannah & Sophie's massive cupcakes!! YUM!

     This week was Josh's birthday, and in honor of him turning 24 Savannah decided to bake daddy a cake!! There was no way we could have done it without the help of two of Savannah (and Mommy's) favorite boys!  These are the two little men that I am blessed to spend my days with. We made some priceless memories as we cracked eggs, decorated cupcakes, made a mess of the kitchen, and celebrated Savannah and "Mr. Josh" :)

     We continued celebrating Josh's birthday with Kevin, Lindsey, and baby Sophie as we went out to dinner and then headed off for special front row seats at a Delta IV rocket launch!!  The launch was absolutely incredible and unlike anything the 6 of us had ever experienced.  Savannah kicked and rolled as the rocket lifted off!  We had a wonderful time, but no birthday celebration would be complete without cupcakes, candles, and a round of Happy Birthday!

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**We will be talking about our trip to the circus on the next blog post**

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Dreams Come True

"When you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are, anything your heart desires, will come to you..."
     From the very beginning when we first found out about Savannah's condition and we started making our list of 100 things we would like to do with her, we knew that a trip to Savannah, GA. was at the top.  
Our high risk doctor mentioned in the beginning though that traveling long distances was probably not the best idea because sometimes anencephaly babies can come early.  We decided to talk with our regular OB and we were over joyed when we got the all clear to take our sweet Savannah to her namesake; Savannah, GA!
     Back in December 2010, Josh and I took a trip to Savannah. We fell in love with how simple the city was, the cobblestone streets, Forsyth Park, and all of the beautiful fountains. We made so many fun memories, which made this second trip even more exciting as we were looking forward to making new memories with Savannah in some of our favorite spots. So, on Sunday July 21 we packed up the car, said good bye to our kitties, and set off on our 4 day family vacation to take Savannah to Savannah, GA. 
     We would love to tell you everything we did, but the words themselves could fill a small book!  We have decided to just highlight a few of our favorite memories for you all.  
  • River Street Sweets: This was Josh and I's go to spot for dessert the last time we were in Savannah, so we knew it was a must for this trip as well.  There is a reason they say you are "like a kid in a candy store" when you are really happy, because there is truly nothing quite like it.  Josh and I enjoyed walking through the store trying to figure out what Savannah's favorite candy is.  Mommy thinks it is chocolate truffles, while Daddy is sure that it is salt water taffy! 

  • Forsyth Park: Just a short walk from our bed and breakfast is one of the most beautiful places in Savannah; Forsyth Park.  The park has this gorgeous fountain in the middle and is surrounded by ancient oak trees. This was also the spot where Josh and I took our 2010 Christmas card photo.  This time we took a lot of photos of our family of three, picked some flowers, and even made wishes in the fountain.  Right after I made my wish a man walked by and as he pointed to my belly he said that my wish already came true.  In that moment, I just wanted to break down and cry because he is so right. Savannah truly is our wish come true.

  • Family Bike Rides: One of the best ways to get around Savannah is to take a pedicab, and with me being 7 months pregnant it was a lifesaver! We took advantage of the pedicabs more than a few times while in Savannah, but there was one time that stood out more than the rest. We were headed back to the bed and breakfast when out of no where a torrential downpour opened up on us.  Our driver at one point asked us if we should stop, or just keep going.  Josh and I looked at each other, knowing that we would get soaked either way, and told him just to keep on going!! We were right, we got SOAKED, but it was so much fun!!

Totally Soaked!

  •  Play Dress Up: On each of our vacations Josh and I try to take old time photos, and this time our sweet Savannah got to join in the fun.  We decided to dress up in 1920's attire: Josh a gangster, and Savannah and I as a flapper.  I tried on different dresses to find just the right one to show off Savannah. The photographer was great and made us feel very comfortable. He even did his best to find poses that would work with my belly.  We smiled and laughed through our whole photo shoot, and I know that we will always remember the day that we played dress up with our daughter!

  • Dance with Daddy: On our last night in Savannah, we ate dinner out on the terrace of one of the River Street restaurants.  It was so relaxing looking out over the water, and hearing different musicians play their music.  After dinner Josh took Savannah over to the saxophone player and asked if he knew a particular song, he did, and this lead to Mommy and Daddy's favorite part of our Savannah, GA. trip...

What a Wonderful World

  • Tybee Island Lighthouse: On our way out of Savannah we decided to stop and visit the Tybee Island Lighthouse.  Josh and I have never been to a lighthouse before, so we enjoyed being able to share another first with Savannah. 178 steps didn't seem too difficult, that is until we started climbing! Once again though, Savannah gave Mommy the strength to push through so that we could make it to the top and see the beautiful view.  

     Since I was 29 weeks, Josh and I decided to do 29 hearts over Savannah! We chose 29 different memories that we loved, and then circled them in handmade hearts. 

     We also made it our challenge at the beginning of the trip to try and spell out Savannah using anything and everything that looked like a letter! 

Here are a few more memories from our Savannah trip:

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     Savannah could hardly wait, it was almost as though she knew ahead of time. The night before our Disney trip, Savannah was up kicking almost the whole night.  We had so much fun prepping for our magical day! We even made special shirts just for the occasion!


     Thanks to a lot of help from our friends, we were able to make all of Savannah's dreams come true...

Savannah and her Dream Team <3

    Savannah's day at Disney was filled with so many magical moments:
  • Princess Meet and Greet!! A big thank you to Kevin and Lindsey for setting up a private meet and greet with Savannah's favorite princess'! We had so much fun introducing our princess, Savannah, to Snow White, Cinderella, and Aurora!

  • Fantasyland Scavenger Hunt: We set off to solve fun puzzles while using our magic key card :)

  • Rode the Walt Disney World Railway (Savannah kicked and rolled at the sound of the "choo choo train")

  • Car Barn Surprise! What an unexpected blessing it was to receive an email from a previous Pastor's wife, and close family friend, saying that she knew someone who wanted to make our Disney trip unforgettable. That someone was Tracy, and all she told us was to "meet her at the car barn at 2:00"  Little did we know what we would be walking into... it looked like a regular barn used to hold the parade floats, until characters started pouring out from behind a large gate!! We were overwhelmed when Mickey and Minnie came out, but then Pluto and Goofy, and before we knew it there were too many to count!  My eyes filled with tears as each character came up to hug us and express their joy for Savannah.  Tracy had told everyone there about Savannah's story, and they made sure to make her feel extra special!  

Tracy, thank you so much for making all of Savannah's dreams come true!!
You are a true blessing <3 

  • Dancing with Mommy- Savannah and I got to have some fun dancing with Stitch, Pluto, and Goofy at the 626 dance party in Tomorrowland! We did the cupid shuffle, YMCA, and even got Daddy to join in the fun.

  • Parade Time- Rain or shine we were set on giving Savannah the entire Disney experience! One of our favorite moments was watching the parade while it rained. We could not help but smile and laugh the whole time. (A big thank you to Daddy for holding the umbrella over Savannah and I)

  • Savannah and Sophie's Magical Playdate- One of the best things about this day was that Savannah and her sweet friend Sophie got to have the best playdate ever.  We loved being able to spend the day with such special friends, Kevin and Lindsey!!! (Kevin created the story below to show some of the special memories that were made!)

Savannah's day at Disney was more than we ever could have dreamed of! We rode on some of our favorite rides, watched the castle shows, and even ate dinner in the Beast's castle!  We stayed at the park from open to close, and went on Savannah's first boat ride back to our car. (The Disney Ferry Boat)

We are so grateful for all of those who helped us make Savannah's Disney day a real DREAM COME TRUE!! <3

"...Like a bolt out of the blue, fate steps in and sees you through, when you wish upon a star, your DREAMS COME TRUE"

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