Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A gift for Anna's family

When I took my very brief hiatus (well, five days of no blogging is a long time for me!), I mentioned I was working on a project for Anna's family. It was a big project--but it was gratifying, and I dearly hope her family will be touched by it.

Anna and I originally knew each other from the message boards on BabyCenter.com, and as I was reading the words of moms who were shocked and saddened by her death, one mom's comment stood out. She said Anna's family would enjoy reading her blog to remember her. And I thought, Wouldn't it be nice to put her blog into a book?

Within a day, I found out that Winkflash was having that fantastic sale on photo books (which has been extended to February 3!), and I realized that could be an affordable way to print a book of Anna's blog posts. The girls from our board on BabyCenter were fully behind the project, and so I started it.

Anna had been blogging for almost two years, so I wasn't able to fit all her posts into the 100-page book. But I probably got well over half of them in there, enough for her family to remember in full-color detail these last 22 months.

Her much-loved husband Davide can read what Anna wrote about him on their 11th anniversary (and he can recreate one of her recipes if he wants to!)
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Her gorgeous boys will have pictures to help them remember the fun they had with their mom and dad every year at the pumpkin/apple orchard.
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And while three-month-old Baby Bella won't remember her mother, she can read Anna's words and know that she held a place of incredible love in her mommy's heart.
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The other girls on our BabyCenter message board have been so generous, and because of all the donations from them, we were able to order seven books--one for Davide, one for each child, and one for each of Anna's parents.

Reading the blog posts was a special experience for me. I occasionally read Anna's blog while she was alive, but not regularly, and I got to know her better as I did this project. Some posts brought me laughter; others comforted me; others brought tears again--but even that was an important part of my grieving.

Nothing will take away the fact that this was a terrible tragedy for a beautiful young family. But as time passes, I hope and pray Anna's loved ones will find real solace in their memories of her deep love and vibrant wit--qualities that shine from her writing at My Goofy Life.

18 comments:

Cathy said...

You made me cry again!
What a special book for each of them. You did good!

Autumn in jeans said...

Words can not express how proud of you I am for doing this for Anna's family. I'm touched, I'm amazed and I barely knew her. Her family will treasure these forever. You are an amazing woman.

~Autumn

Angeltazcuddy said...

absolutely gorgeous! thank you again for doing this!

*Monica said...

What a beautiful and thoughtful idea. I am moved to tears and so grateful that her family will have this.

Great job, CBeth.

Cindy said...

I was moved by the amazing gesture and you and the other mom bloggers did, that was a wonderful story of a great gift that Anna's family will treasure forever.

Sara_Ortiz said...

I didn't know Anna, but I think this is such an amazing thoughtful and really cool gift. I'm not one for mourning people's deaths but celebrating their life. It also surprises me that someone who you never met face to face could have this sort of impact on you.

I'm a very physical sort of person so it's taken me a while to get into this whole Blogging, Twitter, Facebook world. But you have shown me that the human spirit and friendship can travel through the internet wires too.

Thanks for sharing.

Call Me Cate said...

Beautiful work and such a great idea. I'm glad it also helped you grieve along the way.

Ginger said...

Looks great Beth!

Ginger said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Laurel said...

Oh Beth...what a lovely, lovely gesture. You have such a creative and loving spirit. Anna's family will be blessed in the years to come to look over her writings. These blessings will indeed abound.

beckiwithani said...

That is such a wonderful idea. The books will, without a doubt, become some of their recipients' most treasured posessions.

Angela said...

Beth, you have done such an amazing job! Thank you from all of us, Anna's family will have something wonderful to treasure in the years to come.

addhumorandfaith said...

A WONDERFUL gift, Beth. I know how touched her family must be. Definitely worth your time.

Cynthia said...

What an amazing way to celebrate a special part of Anna's life. I am sure her family will love it. You are so thoughtful Beth. You did good.

Kristi said...

Thank you SO much for putting this together, Beth! Such a great idea and a real treasure for her family!

SharkBait said...

Thank you Beth. What a beautiful gift. Her family will love it.

yvette

Drea said...

Can you tell me more about how you did this? How do you take what's on the blog and put it into the book format? I'm technically challenged, but I'd love to do this!

Tiffany said...

Thats awesome Beth! I just know that Davide and the kids will really apprecaite this - what a wonderful way to keep Anna with them each and every day.