Monday, May 20, 2013

Celebrating Carter {FIVE years post transplant} and a Giveaway!

I haven't blogged since Carter's fifth birthday and here I am again almost a year later to celebrate his 5th year post transplant. Five years seems like an eternity when we talk about our sweet Carter and his amazing journey.

He is an incredibly smart and a spunky cutie pie and we can't imagine our family without him.  This day is such a precious reminder of how fleeting time is and how incredibly fragile life is.  Our family will be indebted to the family who so bravely chose to give life in the face of loss.

I can't imagine the thoughts racing through Sean and Chelle's minds in those many many many days in the hospital.  The prayers begging God to spare Carter.  The tears flowing for the umpteenth time. The gnawing feeling of the unknown with each conversation they had with medical personnel.

Seeing this sweet picture on his first day of kindergarten was surely a hallelujah moment!  I'm so proud of Sean and Chelle for never expecting anything less than the best for Carter and then fighting for it.  They have consistently shown me that love is just as much a part of the healing process as medicine.

Chelle has a beautiful gift for capturing Carter's sweet personality in every picture she shoots.  His smile quite literally lights up a room! Oh we are thankful for this precious nugget! I'm so thankful he has had so many opportunities to live life to it's very fullest!

While he was in the hospital I took this picture and felt the Lord highlight the verse  Isaiah 58:11.  It is one I have prayed over and over since.  As with Carter's fight into this world and in the first few year's of his life, each day is a gift and each day isn't guaranteed to be without complication.  As I post this he is fresh out of the hospital from a bout of pneumonia and pink eye. 

Carter is our real life superhero.  He never stops smiling.  He never stops reminding us of his zest for life.  He never lets us give up on miracles.

And so we celebrate this incredible boy today!  Our family is scheduled to enjoy a balloon release and cupcakes in honor of our amazing Carter Bear and hope you will join in the fun!  I'd love to see anyone and everyone join in by releasing five balloons in honor of Carter and snap a picture.  Share it on Twitter {I'm @jennilynncar} or Instagram {I'm @ragamuffinbeauties} and tag it with the hashtag #cartercatesdonatelife or upload it  to Facebook or post it to your blog or email it to me at, anyway you do it be sure to share with friends & encourage them to do the same.  How cool would it be to have a ton of people participate to share with Carter and his family?!?!

I'd also love to give back in a tangible way.  I have been working on some new clutches and I would like to give one away.   The winner will have their choice of the available clutches at the end of the giveaway.  You will be eligible for an entry with each book purchase from The Joyful Life Library of your choice and/or your incredible choice to Donate Life.  You are able to purchase as many books as you like for as many entries as you would like.  The winner will be required to email me their Amazon receipt to be eligible for the clutch, choosing to become a donor will be a honor system entry.

I've been so blessed by my sweet friend Heather's choice to choose joy after her son Samuel passed away.  Like Sean and Chelle, Heather and her husband are familiar with hospital waiting rooms.  To honor Samuel and his memory while loving sweet families facing the unknown in the waiting rooms of the PICU, she created The Joyful Life Library.  What started as a project for one waiting room has grown into ten.  The library keeps these waiting rooms stocked with beautiful children's books to spread joy and bring the sweet gift of normalcy to hurting families. 

The choice to donate life or recycle your organs as their slogan suggests, is an intimate and incredibly selfless choice.  I strongly suggest to discuss this option with your family and pray about the decision.  It is one of the most incredible gifts you can give to a family waiting on the transplant list, a family faced with a tragedy, a family praying for a miracle.  The gift of life effects the donor recipient and their family in such a powerful way!

So that's it, for every donation you earn an entry.  For every entry you need to leave a comment.  Make sure you leave your email address with your entry if it isn't attached to your blogger profile. The giveaway ends Friday, May 24th at midnight CST and a winner will be selected using and then notified by email and by a post on Monday, May 27th.  (This giveaway is not endorsed or in connection with the Donate Life Organization.) 

I'd love it if you would share this giveaway too, unfortunately entries are limited to donations and not shares.  Thanks friends for celebrating our sweet boy!