Category: Parenting things

How to Keep Your Angel’s Memory Alive

When I ask about a topic to write about, this comes up a lot! figuring out how to keep your angel’s memory alive is so important to our motherly instinct. Just because our child died, it DOES NOT mean they didn’t exist and can’t be remembered. It’s hard going day to day with a reminder that people go about their day as if a piece of the world is gone. It’s your duty as a mother or father to make sure the child’s memory is being protected. You ask, “How do I do that?”

Well, it’s sometimes rather difficult to imagine how to incorporate a missing person into a family event or even every day life, and that’s why I came up with this list. This list is what I do to keep my son Callan’s memory alive. At the bottom I’ll even add other suggestions that I’ve yet to do, but want to.  


Family photographs including a photo of your angel – Like the above photo, I had another heart mom take my photo with an actual framed photo of my son before he passed. We use this photo in almost every picture we take to include him in what we are doing now. All you need to do is, pick your favorite picture of your angel, have it printed to an 8×10, frame it, and then have someone hold the frame while everyone gathers around for the family picture. This will keep your child included in all of the photos that happen after his or her passing. 



Angelversaries – A lot of people do not know what an angelversary is, and that’s okay because I’m about to explain it to you. An angelversary is the anniversary of a death. So, Callan’s is February 11th, and every year we go out and set balloons free at his head stone. This date is the day you send messages, send things to heaven, and let the world know today you lost a piece of your heart.



Angel birthdays – Every birthday from after he passed until forever, I vowed to celebrate his birthday. I bake a superman cake and we go visit his head stone. We sometimes also do another balloon release. Today we celebrate a birthday that nobody acknowledges anymore. My son was born, and that day is still special, so I will forever celebrate the day he graced the world with his angelic presence. 



Yearly Christmas Stocking Stuffer – On Christmas, I usually will find a small stocking stuffer sized sock monkey and place it in his stocking to ensure that even though he isn’t here physically, he will still always be a part of the family. I’ve known people to also take the money they’d spend on their angel and use that for the Angel Tree donations. Another thing I’ve known other loss parents to do is, have a toy drive in their child’s name and donate to Toys for Tots or another local charity.



Have a memorial shelf – When Callan passed away, my husband and mother in law boxed all of Callan’s stuff away to help us move forward, but we kept out his favorite things, pictures, his beads, and pacifier. We placed those things on a shelf, along with his photo album, memory box, and soil we took from the grave site so a piece of his new home will always be with us. This shelf has helped me more than words can express because it’s like I have a physical spot to look at and know he was real. When everything else moves on, I have this one sacred spot to look at.



Memorial TattooI have two, so far, in memory of my son. I joke I’ll probably be fully tattooed in just tattoos for him. Tattoos, for me, are cathartic. There’s pain at first, but the permanence of the ink in memory of your angel validates they were real. It validates your thoughts, your grief, your tears, everything. Tattoos are a great way to keep your angel with your forever. I got Callan’s name and his exact EKG strip, one of his last heart beats that were recorded is on my skin. How much more real can one person get? The second tattoo I got is shared, Peter Pan for my son, and the moon for my daughter.



Butterfly Release – I’ve yet to do this, but I’m thinking of using this idea for Callan’s birthday this year. It’s safer for the environment, and to me, more symbolic than just balloons. Butterflies are a symbol for angels near by.



Paper Lanterns – You definitely have to check about burn bans, weather, and all sorts of stuff before doing this one, but I’d love to be able to have a full memorial service after dusk and float the lit paper lanterns to heaven. You’re supposed to be able to make wishes on them, and I’m a Disney fanatic, so I love the idea of tying in the beauty of Rapunzel’s light festival. It’s a beautiful and symbolic ceremony.


If you have anymore ideas on how to keep an angel’s memory alive, please share in the comments below. I’d love to hear your feedback! Also Follow me on Facebook and Pinterest


Lots of love,





Wham Bam, Thank You Ma’am

So guys, I planned a great day today (my day off). I was planning on finally doing something on my bucket list. I was hoping to start the process to get my passport and have this awesome photo shoot with my kid. All these ideas of whimsy and ethereal beauty shots danced in my naive little mind today, almost like sugar plum fairies.

So, let me begin with the beginning of my day. I remember I have to go get parts to make a whimsical swing for a prop in the photo shoot. I was so excited! The hardware store I go to has awesome customer assistance, so I get my wood cut, drilled holes, and find rope to make this gorgeous prop swing. The excitement in me is bubbling all over and harshing everyone’s bad mood with my good one. Then I leave ready to go to my next part of my to do list: fake flowers. Why silk flowers? Ethereal swing. I go and pick out this beautiful arrangement of flowers to wrap around the rope of the swing. It’s going to be so pretty!

Then I go to a clothing store to find another dress, hopefully with lace, to use because you can never use too many costumes at a photo shoot…right?! Anywho, this store had NOTHING, NADA, ZIP, ZILCH, ZERO in dresses for toddlers. They had tuxes for boys, but no dresses for girls…Am I the only one here who still likes girly things? What happened to lace, pearls, and formality?! Aaaanyways, then I go to this really almost kind of expensive boutique, and AHHHH!!! heavenly music plays as I find this gorgeous lace white gown in my kiddo’s size! It’s like God himself said, “Nicole, Reilly must wear this!” So, I snatched it off the rack and bought it!

Cut to me sashaying to my car to realize I forgot the balloons for part of the photo shoot, so I go back to the fake flower store, and find a super cool gigantic balloon, lace, and ribbon. THEN, I decide I should be good on errands for the day, so I pull out of my parking spot to realize, PINK NAIL POLISH! Because no one likes nekkid toes. I run into the gigantic everybody goes here place, and run back out with some paleish pink polish.

FINALLY, I got home, took the dog out of the crate (He hates the crate), and spray paint the base of the swing! I finally can breathe. I wait for the hubs to get home, when he says there’s not enough rope. He heads off back to the store to get what I failed at getting, and then I pass out on the couch from too much sun interaction. It’s now 3:00 and I’m stretching time as far as it can go. 5:00 rolls around and I’m zip tying the pretty flowers. 5:30 I pick up the tot and race to get her ready.

Here’s where it gets interesting. Photo shoot at 6:00. I failed to bring snacks. I didn’t have time to stop and get food. So, the tot and I roll up to the park ready to take some dazzling pictures. First the balloon pops out of nowhere and then BAM! The kid pulls a switch on me. I knew it was coming, but nevertheless it was still embarrassing. She freaks out and doesn’t want to touch, sit, or swing. She throws herself in the dirt and only wants me to hold her. I say this goes on for about twenty or so minutes, but it felt like someone was dangling ice over me while I’m dining in hell. I finally gave up and realized the pictures weren’t going to happen today, so I thanked my wonderful photographer and we decided to reschedule, to when? HAHAHA I have no clue?! The moral of the story is, be flexible and BRING SNACKS! Not everything is going to work out the way you want, but in case it doesn’t you’ll always have some fruit snacks to keep the toddler calm.