Simply A Farmer’s Wife

Awesome News.

I’ve been meaning to share this with y’all for quite some time now but just haven’t had the opportunity to really sit down and spend some quality time on it.  So today I decided that I would just do it before I forgot again or didn’t have the time.  Story of my life.

Anyway, Brad and Kellie Myers are staying at Parker’s House right now.  Actually they are at Duke right now in labor and hopefully Carter makes his grand entrance soon.  On their multiple trips to Duke they shared with the doctors up there about The Parker Reese Foundation and Parker’s House and the doctors started asking questions.  They wanted more information and were impressed with our mission to help CDH families.  So, long story short they asked for our info and we made some contacts and are in the process of scheduling a meeting with the CDH team at Duke for possible sponsorship.  I have spoken with 5 doctors, one was actually Parker’s doctor, and a social worker.  They are all very interested in working with our foundation on many different levels and supporting Parker’s House.  This news is overwhelming and I cannot even begin to explain what it will mean for families of CDH.  We are so excited to be working so  closely with one of the top facilities in North Carolina that we have to continue to pinch ourselves. 

We still cannot believe that after 10 months our foundation has grown to be what it is today.  We are so proud of all the people behind the scene that give countless hours of their own time and money.  We are so blessed to have the sponsors we do.  And we are especially blessed  that people are praying for our mission.  We believe first hand that prayer is powerful and it’s why we always ask you to say one for us and for all families past, present and future. 

We are in the process of opening our Chapter in Texas and are super excited about that.  We’ll have a Chapter in Texas y’all!  How freaking awesome is that?  Before long there will be a Chapter in every state.  We will change the face of CDH as we know it today.  We are making great efforts and strides to fund research, advocate awareness and support families affected by CDH. 

I am proud of what we’ve accomplished thus far and I know that with time our foundation will be even greater than it is today.  There are days when I question if I can do this or if I have the energy to do this and then I’ll get an email from a family and it confirms that I’m doing the right thing.  

We have some other really awesome things up our sleeves and I cannot wait to share those with y’all as they develop.  We are going to have a huge open house/anniversary party for Parker’s House next year so y’all start making plans to be there!! 



October 6, 2008, 3:15 pm
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There are several things I want to mention so here goes:

  • John Michael Larson was born on 10-4-08 in Denver, CO.  He is a CDH baby.
  • Kellie will be induced tonight at 8 pm with Baby Carter.  I’ll update when I know more.
  • Pictures of Dedication (the few I took) are on the foundation  blog.
  • Round for Hope ™ is October 24 ,2008 in San Antonio, Texas. 
  • PRF Launch Party is December 6, 2008.
  • Heels of Hope™ starts February 27, 2009 lasting thru March 28, 2009 for Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia Awareness.  More to come later. 
  • There are only 80 more days until Christmas!  Eek!

Okay, things have been extremely busy the last week.  I thought it would slow down but I was so wrong.  I will udpate more later as I know this post is so blah.

The Calm After The Storm.

So, we made it through Saturday.  It was a blast and we had a good turnout.  It was so awesome to finally meet Brad, Kellie and Lucy.  They are amazing people and we had so much fun with them.  It was also great to see Russell, April, Debbie and Roy again!  We have sure missed them!  The weather was beautiful.  It was such a peaceful day and I think everyone had a great time. 

We had the most amazing cupcakes!  Most of you remember that I ordered Parker’s birthday cupcakes from The Cupcake Shoppe Bakery in Raleigh and they were delicious so I decided why mess with a good thing.  These cupcakes were just as amazing and I think the hit of the party.  I haven’t downloaded my pictures yet so I’m stealing one from Kellie’s blog.  They were yummy!

I am so glad that the weekend is over and that I can finally relax some.  We have a lot going on right now and being able to focus solely on our family is really good and needed.  My brother-in-law, Roger, left yesterday morning for a year deployment and it was rough.  Seeing my sister, niece and nephew upset was extremely hard on me.  My sister is 15 months older and has always been the strong one.  She has always protected me and taken care of me.  She spent every day with us in the hospital and cared for me like I was her child.  Anyway, seeing her cry was painful.  And to see the fear in my niece and nephew’s face is truly unbearable.  Please pray for them as they manage their lives for the next year without him. 

We are planning our next event which will be in December and our next in February.  We are so excited about all that The Parker Reese Foundation is doing for CDH families. 

I better get back to work and will update with some pictures from this weekend later. 

And oh yeah.  Texas beat Arkansas 52-10.  Ouch!

Parker’s House Dedication Is Tomorrow.
September 26, 2008, 10:42 am
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And I’m freaking out.  I feel like I have a million things to do and only about 24 hours to do them in.  I need it to stop raining and I need it to be really nice tomorrow.  Not too hot and not too cold.   Tomorrow is an important day for Parker’s House and The Parker Reese Foundation.  It is a chance for those to see what it is we do for CDH families.  A day for all to  feel the amazing peace, hope and excitment that exudes from Parker’s House. 

We have had more stuff donated for Parker’s House in the last week than I could have ever imagined.  My car is full from front to back.  Enough space for me to put me.  Our living room is packed full of stuff.  We had to get a trailer from a friend to haul more stuff.  We are taking two vehicles tonight because we needed that much space.  Is that not amazing?  A true testament to God’s amazing work. 

I know that tomorrow will be a crazy day and I probably won’t have time to post until late Sunday.  I am super excited about Parker’s House and the people involved.  With each day that passes I become more driven and inspired to truly make a difference for CDH and the families it affects.  There will be several CDH families there tomorrow, along with their family members and ours, and some medical professionals.  We are counting down the hours and checking our list one last time. 

Please say a prayer for us tomorrow.  For Parker’s House.  For The Parker Reese Foundation.  For Brad, Kellie and Carter Meyers.  For April, Russell and Nash Van Dyke.  For the people who will be traveling hours to attend.  Pray for good weather. 

And please pray for my brother-in-law, Roger Solano, who leaves at 7 a.m. on Monday for a year deployment to Columbia, South America.  He has served 15 years in the United States Army and needs our prayers as he leaves behind my sister, Jennifer, my niece Karsen and my nephew, Caden.  He will be missed more than words could ever say but I know that this time he has a very special angel going with him.

September 16, 2008, 9:45 am
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So, I was reading Kristyn’s blog today and I noticed her GoodReads section so I decided to check it out myself.  I had never heard of GoodReads before and am now completely addicted.  I have always been a reader.   I started reading at a very young age and could always be found with a book instead of toys.   Reading has been a way for me to escape reality on many occasions.   I can literally get lost in a book and lose all sense of time and my surroundings. 

I read a lot when I pregnant.  I didn’t work the last part of my pregnancy and I was home by myself a lot.  I’m one of those readers who says “just one more page” and end up reading at least two more chapters.  I normally always have a book in my car and purse.  Just in case.  When Parker died I stopped reading.  Then I started reading books on grief and I lost my passion for reading.  It wasn’t healing anymore for me to read.  It was more like homework from your therapist.  So I just stopped altogether.  I’d still buy books weekly but never read them.  Just kept collecting them and watching them collect dust on the shelf. 

I started reading again several months ago.  And I’m in a different place now.  Reading is fun again.  Not a chore.  I have always been a careful reader.  You know the kind that has their favorite authors and doesn’t venture out to explore new authors.  I read James Patterson, John Grisham, Mary Higgins Clark and Nicholas Sparks.   Well, this time I’m going all out.  I am going to venture out and read authors I’ve never read before and that I’ve never even heard of and more importantly I’m going to trust my friends and read their suggestions. 

I’m still trying to get sold on the Twilight Series by Stephanie MyersJenn gave it some great reviews but I am just not sold yet.  I really want to be because it’s the “in” thing to be reading right now but a teenage vampire?  I mean really.   I might try it out but I also might need some more convincing. 

Anyway,  right now I’m reading two books.  The Last Lecture, which I’m almost done with, and Bridge of Sighs which is a great book so far!  I’ve never read anything by Richard Russo before but so far I’m loving this book.  I couldn’t put it down last night and read until 1 a.m. and today I’m completely exhausted.  I did bring the book with me so I could read at lunch though.  I encourage each of you to start reading and maybe we should start a Blog Book Club.  Well, I’m at work and I’m sure they’d appreciate if I did something productive today instead of blogging.  Please feel free to give your reading suggestions!  I am hoping to be able to read at least one book a week.  We’ll see how it all goes! 

On a side note if y’all are looking for a place to donate your books please donate them to Parker’s House!  I have purchased two book shelves for living room area and am taking some of my books there as I am running out of space to keep them.  If you are interested in donating your books please email me at and we’ll work something out.  We can even pay for shipping if you don’t want to or can’t.    THANKS!

Looking Back.
July 18, 2008, 6:27 pm
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So, when we started the foundation and we started Parker’s House I never imagined that my life would change in the magnitude that it was the day that I met April, Russell and Seth.  I remember our first visit with them.  It was at Parker’s House.  I felt an immediate connection to them and as we drove off I told Ashley that they would be lifelong friends.  Not the kind you see every once in a while but the kind you plan trips with and the kind you talk to all the time.  They are truly some of the most amazing people I know.  Their courage is indescribable.  Their love for each other evident.  Their faith in God everlasting.  When I went to the hospital to see them and Seth I had butterflies all the way there.  Not the good kind either.  The kind where I felt like I was going to throw up.   I knew that I needed to be strong for them.  I promised myself I wouldn’t break down.  I wouldn’t cry.  I even asked Parker to help me.  I was in the parking garage and I said a prayer.  I know that God heard me because I felt this amazing gust of wind and I knew it was Parker.  He had sent one of my favorite angels to comfort me.  I walked in the PICU and I felt this numbness start to come over my whole body.  April knew something I think because she put her hand behind my back.  This woman who’s child lay fighting for his life was comforting me.  It wasn’t supposed to be like that.  I was supposed to be strong for her.  I immediately started crying when I saw him.  For many reasons though.  He was gorgeous and perfect in every way.  He opened his eye and looked at me.  It gave me chills.  When I touched him he moved and I remembered never seeing Parker move.  Never seeing her eyes.  Never seeing her do anything except lie exceptionally still.  My heart was heavy for the Van Dykes and for myself.  I know that it’s selfish of me to think of myself during a time like that but how do you not.  I cried myself to sleep that night in the hotel thinking of Seth and Parker.  Praying that God would spare his life and heal his body so that April and Russell could take their son home with them.  Reliving Parker’s death isn’t easy.  It tears my heart a part all over again and I find myself in that same dark place that I was two years ago.  I questioned whether i needed to continue with the foundation or just get out while I still could.  I didn’t think I could continue to be connected to families and CDH babies and walk away not scarred.  I knew that each time a family moved in my heart would break all over again and I would have to relive Parker’s death.  Was the reward worth the pain? 

And then it hit me.  The day Seth passed.  It all hit me like a ton of bricks.  I was given Parker for a reason and it wasn’t to quit.  It wasn’t to lie in some dark hole and feel sorry for myself.  It was to help families like our own.  To change the face of CDH as we know it.  I know what my purpose is now.  I know what I have to do and I have never wanted it more than I do now.  Not just for my beautiful little girl but for every single baby who has been and will be born with CDH.  I wanted to bring to her home.  I dreamed of the day I would bring her home.  That day never happened but I’ve been given this amazing gift because of her.  Her life has touched so many people and her story is one I will tell forever.  Parker will live on not only in my heart but through our foundation.  My plans for her ended before they ever began but now I have new plans for her and her memory. 

I know that this journey will mean reliving the worst moments and days of my life but it also means reliving the greatest moments of my life too.  It means honoring the one person who I love the most.  Parker.  So is the reward worth the pain?  Absolutely it is. 

Tomorrow Ashley and I will travel to Kings Mountain for Seth’s funeral.  Please continue to keep his family in your prayers and say one for us too.  This family has a long journey ahead of them.

Parker’s House – Part II
May 26, 2008, 10:56 am
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