We Climbed before the Klimb 4 Kim...

We Climbed before the Klimb 4 Kim...
1997's Climb

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Angel Tree

          Man, the days are just steamrolling along...It's amazing to me how in tune the bambini are and want to do more during these next few days to honor their Mama and to remember her...

          Today, that meant re-hanging all of the beautiful angels that everyone came an hung in our olive tree in the front yard!  Before I talk about that actual hanging of the angels, let me revisit the tree itself.
          Turns out, that the olive tree is one of Kim's favorites.  She loved their color and the fact that they do not typically drop their leaves, so there is no mess.  They are excellent shade trees and require very little water or care.  She would just have me trim them up a little to give them some shape.  The first thing she had me do, when we moved in here 7 years ago, was to tear out the mesquite and acacia trees planted by the builders. She hated the mess that they made, the thorns that they had and the fact that their root systems do not go down very deep, so the monsoon would knock the trees down.  The olive trees that we planted together 7 years ago have grown into the beautiful trees that she imagined they would become.
           So it was very fitting that well wishers chose to hang angels in her favorite tree!

                      We had picked up Lexy and Breanna at school today, and they were excited to help.  Cody was very into putting the angels back up - he, more than the little ones, wants to make sure we do something special each day.  Here, the bambini are choosing which angels to hang first, pulling them out of boxes, wrapping, etc and attaching new hangers where necessary.

Lexy and Autumn climbed as high as they could to hang angels and then found it was kind of nice to just stay up in the trees, like monkeys, for awhile. 

                                                  This simple act, of putting the beautiful angels back in the tree, was comforting, soothing...feel free to add more, if you wish...these guys had a fun time and the angels look pretty and have such meaning.  Many still have messages attached to them.  And Patti's and Jennifer Lofgren's angels, made it through the whole year hanging from the very branches from which they were hung!
                                                  Here they are, proud of their work and ready to go eat Italian Wedding Soup at Viro's...it is Thursday, after all.  I've come to realize, that, if someone were to put a hit out on me, I'd be a pretty easy mark.

                  I try to fill their days with meaning and memories...and to push away the dark.  We are all staying up until at least 10, Cody and I until midnight...and then, I do my best to get to sleep...I had asked Kim to haunt me, she promised she would and of course, she does.  But, upon reflection, I asked the question wrong.  I should have thought to set up signs, ways that I could be sure that Kim was visiting/communicating to me - like a hummingbird on campus at Cottonwood Elementary (I saw one this morning, despite the frigid temps, and thought 'dammit, why didn't we come up with some sort of code??')  There just wasn't time, but I am thankful for the goodbyes that we did share...

               "   On the first page of our story
The future seemed so bright
Then this thing turned out so evil
I don't know why I'm still surprised
Even angels have their wicked schemes
And you take that to new extremes
But you'll always be my hero
Even though you've lost your mind"
                    Kim told me that I was her hero...more than once.  She was so sweet...but I was out of my mind.

                             Here's some precious shots of Kimmy and Autumn on our last visit to Pennsylvania.  One of her with Cajun, who traveled well.                    

And the thank you's continued:

December 8th, 2010

To Micah Mortensen, principal at Desert Sky Middle School;
Thank you for the show of support last night at Chuy's! Kim was overwhelmed with emotion when I told her how many good people were there to cheer her on. We really appreciate all that you do for our family and for Desert Sky. Please thank Cindy and all of the front office girls who came out too! Cody was especially excited to see Coach Lee and Coach V - and Rayna, what a hard worker she is! Words can never express how grateful we are. Dave"
              Cody played on two championship flag football teams at Desert Sky.  Last year, being special, as he had incredible games during the playoffs and championship, at running back.  It meant a lot to him that the coaches came out to Chuy's.  And, I can still clearly remember, Kimmy insisting that I park her in the Expedition on Rankin Loop, so that she could watch his game...
             And to Rayna Krewszewski, who was Volunteer Coordinator at Desert Sky...
"Hi Rayna,
Just wanted to thank you again for last night at Chuy's! Thank you for all of your hard work in making that a success, we really appreciate it! Please thank Deanna for coming out too, it was good to see her and the boys. Kim was overcome with emotion when I told her about all of the good people that were there cheering her on. You guys are making a difference. Thanks again! Dave
PS Tell Rick that Kim is getting me a Juventus, Del Piero #10 jersey for Christmas! There's just not enough soccer fans in Tucson..."
     To Lydia Crain, principal at Rincon Vista, where Kimmy worked;
"Hi Lydia,
Chuy's! It was great to see you, Cindy, Brent and so many teachers and staff. I let Kim know how many good people were there to cheer her on and she was overwhelmed with emotion. We couldn't do this without people like you. Also, we appreciate all that you and the staff are doing to help Kim get sick pay and all of your team who have made us food. Amy has been so helpful in setting up the food schedule and working on the sick time.  Monica Christensen has been especially supportive, making us several meals. You guys are amazing! Thanks again, Dave"
       To Brent Edwards, Assistant Principal at Rincon Vista:
Thanks again to you, Jenna and your family for taking time out of your busy schedules to go to Chuy's to support our family! Kim was overcome with emotion as I let her know how many people from Rincon Vista were there - what a caring, generous community we are blessed to be a part of. I'm sorry I did not get more chance to visit with your family - I wanted to thank Jenna for her generous offer to stop in to check on Kim - that would actually be comforting, as she seems to run into complications, like blood clots, caused by the cancer. You guys have been so helpful, especially seeing that Kim gets sick benefits and all of the staff that have cooked us meals. Thank you again, Dave"
            And Kim had another good day on 12/8/2010...Janene came over and styled her hair in our kitchen.  It did Kim so much good to have her hair cut and cleaned - again, something we had taken for granted, meant so much to her.  Janene took alot of time to make Kim feel good that day...
            It was today, last year, that Kim taught Autumn and I how to make the marinara sauce.  Andrea, Lexy and Breanna were coming over and Kim wanted to make them pasta and make your own sundaes - she insisted on running to Fry's with me to get ice cream and all of the fixings.  Cody enjoyed going to see our neighbor, Alex, play basketball for Rincon Vista against Desert Sky...And Kim and I ran to Target to pick up some gifts for Christmas.  Even though she was wheel chair bound and on oxygen, she was up, alive, and glowing...As only Kimmy could...

"Far, far away; find comfort in pain,
All pleasure's the same: it just keeps me from trouble.
It's more than just words: it's just tears and rain."
                                                           - James Blunt


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