Last Saturday I went looking for Thomas' birthday bear. I was searching for a teddy with character, and I knew I'd know the right bear when I found it. But this year, I had problems. None of the bears seemed quite right and when I arrived at the last shop in town, I was beginning to despair. What would I do if I didn't have a teddy bear for Thomas for his birthday? I couldn't just buy any stuffed animal. 

As I walked around the baby and child shop - one of those places that sells beautiful expensive items every mother adores but every baby could probably live without - I found a cute stuffed animal tucked up in a designer cot. I couldn't decide if it was a bear or a dog because its ears were a bit long. I wanted a bear, not a dog, but I bought the cute animal anyway.

When I arrived home I showed the dog-bear-teddy to the girls and they exclaimed with delight. "It looks like a bear, Mum! What will you call it?" I try and give Thomas' teddies names that are significant to each year. "You'll have to call it Therese! It's been the year of  A (The) Little Way!" suggested Imogen. And I agreed.

So this morning Therese made her appearance. I'd pinned a flowery hair decoration to her head. Now she looks definitely bear-like and not dog-like and very Therese-ish. She is sitting on a coffee table in the lounge, together with a green bird Imogen bought for Thomas, a bunch of green and sparkly flowers and an apple-green candle. Thomas' photo is cradled between Therese bear's feet.

We went out to the cemetery to visit Thomas at lunch time. I was so pleased all our still-at-home-children could be there for this annual event. 

We blew up balloons and tied them to the flower bowl together with a birthday card of birthday messages. We had a new bunch of flowers too.

It was very hot and sunny which isn't very good for photos. The children squinted into the sun and I snapped away capturing the birthday pictures for 2011.

Then it was time for our picnic. We sat in the shade of a tree, whose leaves rustled with a refreshing breeze,by the church and enjoyed our lunch.

Now we are home; our birthday is outing over.

A short while ago, the doorbell rang: a delivery of flowers. Thank you, Cathy and Ian! I cried a few tears at your thoughtfulness.

There have been emails and Facebook messages full of love and hugs and prayers, and I want to thank everyone for remembering us and dear Thomas on his birthday.

May St Therese pray for you and may God bless you.

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  1. *crying* How can I say this? But you and your family have this sad sad loss of Thomas.. but you've made it into an annual day of love. So beautiful. I know Thomas is pleased to know his special day is one of such absolute love.

  2. Susan,

    We couldn't ever stop celebrating Thomas' birthday. I do feel especially sad on this day every year, but as you said, it's "an annual day of love". That is so well put! He isn't here to see what we do every year but I am sure Thomas is aware of how very much we love him.

    Thank you for your comments. They mean so much.


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