Happy Birthday, John

I put a great deal of thought in how I wanted to honor and remember John on his  Birthday.  I think it is doubly important because of Nathaniel.  I always want Nathaniel to know that his father loved him and that although his father is gone that he never meant to leave us.

Right now Nathaniel is too young to understand, but I know there will come a day with a lot of questions.  I want to be prepared with the best answers that I can have for a situation that I really don’t have answers for.

A Young Widow’s bulletin board had some great suggestions.  My favorite being writing notes and attaching them to balloons and sending the notes to Heaven.  I thought, how perfect.  It even addresses another of my concerns.  I visit the cemetery daily and I can just see Nathaniel one day questioning why we go to the cemetery to visit Daddy if he’s up in Heaven.

So, I decided we’d take John a card, some yellow roses, and some balloons.

The card that I liked was just a “Dad” card, so I modified it a little… no sense buying two cards for a dead guy.

Outside of Card

The inside of the card could have fit better.  But, one of the things that is so hard to deal with is everything that John took care of and I never had to worry about… like flat tires…

Inside of Card

We both wore our “Team Smitty” shirts.  Nathaniel’s shirt that fits is in the wash, so this one is huge on him.

Nathaniel & Mary (Team Smitty)

I had called Wendy at the pharmacy and she had the balloons ready when we got there.  James & Wendy added two balloons as a gift to John  (Thank You).

Nathaniel, Mary, and the balloons

I tied 3 balloons to the LiveStrong band on the marker.

John's grave

I got the boy out of his car seat… he thought this was GREAT fun and was toddling all over the place.

We sang Happy Birthday to John.


I let the balloons loose.


And smiled as they headed over the town.  John was very proud of Rising Sun and love his town.  It was cool to see them floating overhead.


I did keep one balloon for Nathaniel to play with at the house.  I figured that was only fitting.

We went out to lunch with a very dear friend, Shawn.  We had a great time… good people… good food… good conversation.  Then we went shopping at JoAnn’s for craft stuff.

After I got home and relaxed and fed critters, I started on the ornaments.  I used some black fimo clay to create them.


These next ones aren’t the greatest shot, but they show detail…

JPS ribbon ornament

JPS Ribbon Ornament

And a freehand one…

So… that was our day in a nutshell.

Happy, Birthday, John!  Love always!!


About Mary K. Smith

I was widowed in July 2009, when I lost my beloved husband, John, to melanoma. Cancer SUCKS. We have a young son who was just a year old when his father died. I live on a small farm in Maryland which is home to horses, cats, and a dog. I started this blog as a way for me to heal, a way to remember my husband, and eventually I'd like to share it with our son so he can see the love that his father had for him, the love that we had for each other, what a great person his father was, and how hard his father fought to live.
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