Saturday, April 9, 2011

angel bear

Sarah has a mom in her class who embroiders everything and anything really well.  I thought about asking her to put John's Angel logo on the bear's shirt, if I could find a blue or black button-down. 

When I walked into the Build-a-Bear store this morning, that mom was there shopping with her daughter.  What an excellent omen that I would find the right bear.  Or at least I took it as a sign it would all work out.

I asked her if she'd embroider something for me on a bear shirt and she said yes.

They didn't have a solid button-down, but the lady helping me had an idea.  She came back with a "cub scout" shirt; blue, button-down, with several patches.  I showed it to the mom and asked her if we could take them off and add the logo.  Again she said yes.

I got a tan bear, white tennis shoes, white low top socks, tan shorts, blue shirt, and the kicker: a safari hat!  [John wore a safari hat the last several years. I think we got it at Walmart.]

When they stuff the bear, you have to step on the pedal that powers the blower that shoots the stuffing into its body.  You also get to pick a plain, satin heart printed with "I love you" or a heart you press that says different things.  I took my Sharpie with me so I could write "Laura & John" on the satin heart, then I put it in.  I watched another bear builder help a couple of kids with theirs, and they made a wish and a promise before they put their hearts in.  This is a ritual you are to do during the process of stuffing.  My helper asked me if I made a wish.  I told her "he knows."  And when she pulled the stitches to close the back of the bear, I fell apart.  She looked at me sympathetically, so I told her my husband had died, and this was his work uniform.  And that I hoped to make it through without crying.  She gave me a hug. 

I registered the bear on their computer.  Named it John Dennis, and gave it the birthdate of April 4, 2011.  Our anniversary date.  When I told Sharon I picked our anniversary date for his b'day, she asked, "Which one?"  We do have lots of special dates to celebrate.

I managed to get out of the store in one piece.  Mush, but one piece.  He's now dressed, except for his shirt. 
very cute

Friday, April 8, 2011

another first

April 4th, our 8th anniversary, was an emotional day.  A particular meltdown happened at lunch while Sarah and I talked about teddy bears.  She said when you make a bear at the mall, they give you a little heart to put inside it.  I told her I didn't think I could make it through doing that.  I pulled up the Prince Charming bear and showed Sarah.  It could even be made with blue eyes. 

During my planning time, the teammate who videoed when John came to school to propose, set the video on my desk.  It was almost a year ago when he asked me to marry him, and I thought the video long gone.  So did she.  It's in a weird format and he husband will try to convert it to a cd in the next couple of weeks.

When I got home from school, I wanted to emerse myself in something of John's.  I put on his favorite hat and started the process of putting together his family's memory packets with a copy of the audio of his memorial service, obit, copies of pages from the guest book; etc.  I spent a couple of hours sorting, reading, and remembering.  I gathered some old cards we'd given each other to put in my keepsake box.  One of the cards was the one John gave me on our last anniversary.  It was between surgeries, so there were some mixed up words, but it reminded me of the decline he went through in reading, writing, and speaking.

During class, our registrar called on my intercom to say I had a personal phone call.  My heart dropped, thinking it might be about Mr. John.  But hooray, hooray, it was good news.  Kelly nominated me for a WCTV Monday Morning Makeover!  Hair, make-up....lots of pampering.   They're going to call to schedule.

Today I found a sticky note!  It has been a while since I've come across one, and was hoping to.  It was in a drawer of my Grandma's old sewing machine, which I don't go in often.  It said, "Gen. 1-12   Love ya! John
xoxo"  John loved studying Genesis 1-12 and wanted to teach on it.  He worked on a lesson plan for it a couple of years ago, before he got sick.  Found the cards the other day, too, in John's office. 

Tomorrow I would like to go to the bear store at the mall and make one so I can put a heart in it.  That's much more personal than just ordering one.  I hope they have an outfit. 

Talked with Mr. John and Gloria yesterday.  He has had 2 blood transfusions and platelets in 2 weeks, and was going for more platelets today.  Gloria contacted Hospice over there.  I'm glad.  They'll give her much-needed help.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

all over the map

When I am tired, I get emotional.  With my first week back at work, I'm tired.  Doesn't help that tomorrow is our 8th anniversary.  John and I always celebrated April 4th as our anniversary and agreed that no matter what day we were married, we'd continue to use that date.  Well, actually I say it was April 1st but John said April 4th, no discussion.  "IT" was our first kiss, in the parking lot of the bowling alley.  2003.  So long ago.

I've been tired all day.  Not sleeping through the night.  I wake up around 2:30 for an hour or so, then don't feel rested in the mornings.  Taking a p.m. tonight.

How to celebrate our anniversary?  Thought about going to the "Build a Bear" store and making a boy bear wearing something that reminds me of John.  For 4 Valentine's, he gave me bears:  one wearing camo for hunting, Yankees with my name on the jersey, 2 with Valentines.  Vermont Teddy Bears has a "Prince Charming" bear.  He's holding a glass slipper on a pillow, and this may be the one I go with, but I wanted to make one myself.  I may go to the store and see what they have.  Would love to find a blue button-down shirt and have it embroidered with "Angel Carpet Cleaning" like John's uniforms.  decisions decisions