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29 December 2008 @ 11:31 pm
Day 545 - Monday 29th December.  

Birthday - tick!
Christmas - tick!

It wasn't nearly as bad as I anticipated.  For the third year running, Jason and I were up before the kids which meant there was no morning madness - we were showered, dressed and refreshed before we woke them :o)

We opened Kyah's Twinkletoes present together and it was just perfect.  I now have her feet and hands sitting beside me on the wall.  It is so detailed and it is amazing to stare at them and remember just how delicate her hands were.
We also received a painting of Kyah from a friend's friend.  It is so lifelike and when I talk to her, I find myself seeking out this portrait - the expression in her eyes is just so surreal!

Val and Nick (Jason's parents) bought me a book by a NZ author named Mary McCallum.  Inside was a note that said (I'm heavily condensing this) Mary was happy to spend a few hours with me discussing turning Kyah's Journey into a book.  Basically I can pick her brain and actually get the ball rolling.  VERY exciting!
My only dilemma is whether I keep the book as a diary form (i.e. don't change anything) or I rewrite it from scratch.  I've had loads of feedback and there are pros and cons to both ... I guess it'll come clearer at a later stage.

It's going to give me such a focus.  I've still been so torn between wanting another baby, wanting to travel, joining the Police force and just doing nothing.  To date, the 'just doing nothing' seems to be the priority but I'm going to get very bored, very soon.
So now, I throw writing a book into the mix and it doesn't seem quite so hazy. 
I write - it's what I do, I love it and it makes complete sense to put everything else on hold and focus solely on making Kyah a bestseller.

I've had many comments asking about the Funrazor next year.  I haven't backed out despite getting cold sweats everytime I think of it! I created a new journal so that all progress (and lack of) can be tracked there.
http://funrazor09.livejournal.com/ Add it to your favourites and keep checking back.  It won't be updated as frequently as this journal but we will put all the fundraise online details up sometime into the new year, along with photos and various other bits and pieces.

Finally, just so you can appreciate what I get to stare at and gush over whenever the mood takes me...

stilettomum on December 29th, 2008 11:22 am (UTC)
They are absolutely beautiful!
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 11:35 am (UTC)
That painting is so amazingly incredible. And the feet and handprints are awesome too. What a neat idea to have her photo underneath them. Honestly I am so in awe of that painting. You must be absolutely thrilled with it. I am so pleased Xmas wasnt as bad as expected. Wow you do have lots of decisions regarding your next path in life, but I am so pleased to hear you are planning on writing Kyah's Journey. I have no doubts it will be a best seller, as you have such a following of people behind you, but also you have a wonderful way with words. I will definitely be a buyer.
I do hope 2009 will bring you and your family some joy and peace.
Take care
St. Annie Merlot: m&m heartaafetzer on December 29th, 2008 03:04 pm (UTC)
That painting is absolutely stunning,
as are the Twinkletoes.

I think the book is a great idea.
It's such a wonderful way to honor Kyah,
and it would also help you in your healing.

{{beautiful}} nicole.gabrielle {{disaster}}yourstareiscold on December 29th, 2008 03:10 pm (UTC)
WOW! Both of those are stunning and such a beautiful tribute to a beautiful girl.
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 04:31 pm (UTC)
Oh my! That painting is incredible! Very talented artist. Her hands and feet casts are so real, they must bring comfort to you. I love the way you have a closed fist and an unfurled one.

So glad to hear that you are going to write a book. You are so talented at this (and Jason was, too, in his journal entries)that it would be a waste not to put your skills to good use. As you say, it will give you something to focus on. No doubt as you write, everything else you've been torn between will become clearer to you too. If I could be so bold as to offer my opinion - the "diary" option sounds good to me. If you write it as you have written this journal, it'll be a bestseller. There are very few people that can write in the honest, heart-breaking and witty manner that you do. You have a real way with words! Have you ever considered a career in journalism ....? I think you'd be very good at it.

I'm delighted that Christmas was better than you thought it would be. You are naturally an optimistic person (I'm very jealous - I tend to veer towards being pessimistic) and it seems like you're coping and keeping your head above water. What a woman! May you take this positive attitude in to 2009 with you.

Lastly, how on earth do you manage to get up before the boys on Christmas Day??? Do you slip them a sleeping pill at bedtime? LOL. I managed to keep the kids in bed til 5.30am but gave up after they took it in turns to go to the toilet every five minutes (visit my Facebook page to see the photos of me looking like a dog's a**e!).

Keep going guys, you are all inspirational.

Much love,
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 05:37 pm (UTC)
Hey guys,

You are continually in my thoughts each day as is wee kyah.
I haven't posted since her passing as to be honest I haven't known what to write to you, nothing at all I can say will make things better.
Its great to hear you have so many options to keep busy.
I can so relate to the whole having another baby thing.
When I lost both my angels it turned into my sole purpose in life to have another baby, not to replace the little men I had lost, nothing will ever ever do that, but to take away the hurting and to help to fill the void in my heart.
I was very lucky both times that my next wee angels were absolutely perfect and I have no regrets at all having them. I would be lost without them now, but like everything it is individual choice.
I love the painting and of course the hand and feet prints, they are just awesome and are something that are so precious and you will treasure forever.
Take care, you are never far from out thoughts.

Jayden and Justin's mummy :)
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 06:07 pm (UTC)
Shannell, Jason and boys I haven't written for a while but check regularly to see if there are updates. OMG that picture is amazing and the hand and foot prints are a true way of remembering your darling. I have one to and I find myself looking at it all the time. I am so glad you all got through Xmas which was always going to be hard. Equally I am glad you have a few things to focus on for you which is great to. I hope Jason and the boys are coping well also. I know from having lost an angel that it is easy to forget the males in our lives as everyone always seems to worry about us and asume that the tough males will just cope, but from experience we all know our males aren't always as tough as everyone thinks they are.
Stay strong as a family now and always.

KIA KAHA from my family to yours xoxoxo (WATTSEY TMMB)
linda_tawhai on December 29th, 2008 06:57 pm (UTC)
... Gorgeous xxx ooo
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 07:27 pm (UTC)
I agree
both are beautiful.. I have the same hand and feet with photo at home.. they are so realy :) keep smiling :)
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 07:33 pm (UTC)
well done on getting through those two milestones. i think a book is a marvelous idea and in diary form too! It would be a more emotional read (if thats possible) if in diary form but that is just my humble opinion. May the new year be brighter for you all.
vermin_nzvermin_nz on December 29th, 2008 07:56 pm (UTC)
I am glad that Christmas wasn't as hard as you'd expected. I've been thinking of you guys a lot over the last few weeks.

The book idea is great! You really do have a way with words, as evidenced by the way you've touched so many people who've never met you or your family (myself included).

As for the Twinkletoes casts and the painting....both are beautiful.
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 08:05 pm (UTC)
is just beautiful it is like khya is looking out at you the eyes say it all what a beautiful little girl the painter as captured it so well it must bring you a lot of piece to look at each day glad the day wasnt to bad for you and you will decide what happens to the rest of your journay and what is right for you and the family just take time hugs to you and family
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 08:12 pm (UTC)
Absolutely lovely
Truly beautiful what can anyone say. As per the previous comment 'Kyah' would be a best seller even before it was written with advance sales if the number of followers of the journal is anything to go by. Best wishes for you and your lovely little family for 2009. You are always in my thoughts.
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 08:21 pm (UTC)
What a stunning and vibrant painting! Well done friend of a friend! It is just beautiful. I love the wee feet and hands too, they are gorgeous.

S, as a reader, I just have to say that yes, you are very right - you are a writer. From this perspective, it is your talent, your passion. I hope you hold this ability close to you forever, because you are very linguistically artistic, and I believe fully that artists need to express themselves to remain happy and healthy. :D

Take care,
xxx Lou
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 08:46 pm (UTC)
Think of you guys often (kyah included). Check the posts weekly now just to get an idea of how your all doing and it sounds like things are going ok. The twinkletoes and painting are amazing. As far as the book goes, whatever you decide to do re: journal/book etc will be fine which ever way you do it as the sentament and love will still shine through and the honesty will help other parents understand and empathise what you guys and kyah went through and how its a road you had to travel, you just didn't get to give the directions this time (if you know what i mean). Big hugs to you all, wishing you a merry christmas and hope for the new year.
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 08:59 pm (UTC)
Oh my god they are AMAZING!

Go the book!!!

Glad you're doing "ok".

Still thinking of you all
Mum of 3 Auckland.
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 09:00 pm (UTC)
Hiya you beautiful family
My God I see what you mean about the portrait of Kyah, clever artist aye but then when you have such a stunning model...
And the hand and feet casts, how special, they're gorgeous.
I just watched Kyah's funeral montage again last night and was reminded all over again as to what a brave and incredible little fighter she was and what a huge spirit she had. What an inspiration. My own little 2 year old daughter has just spilt juice all over the carpet and because I'm all Kyah-ed up (what a term!) after watching her montage, split juice is so incredibly nothing right now, mop it up and move on.
Yes please write the book!!!! Word of mouth alone would definately make it a best seller...and (for those few that haven't heard of Kyah by now) who would be able to walk past her beautiful wee face staring out at them from the cover of a book and not be able to buy a copy! It sounds like it would be an awesome way of helping you with the grief process too, a great focus for you. Am curious, and if you don't want to answer that's completely fine, but do you have a background in writing or has it just always been a hobby for you? You're such a clear and concise writer and you can paint such a picture with your words, a rare talent Shanell!
I wish your family a very healing and happy new year and continue to send all my love and support to you all.
kyahsjourneykyahsjourney on December 29th, 2008 09:21 pm (UTC)
I desperately wanted to be a journalist when I was about 13 or so and applied for a course at tech when I was 17 or 18 but I didn't have enough experience?! Go figure. Creative writing was my passion at school and beyond and I much prefer it to the structured form as I'm free to explore and write whatever I desire.
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 09:14 pm (UTC)
Oh my goodness
that portrait of Kyah is stunning!! And her little hands and feet. I am glad Christmas was a good day for all of you. And fantastic news for you having an authors brain to pick! Kyahs book will be a best-seller, that is just a given.
It was great to log on here and see Kyah and your update...this morning I got a call about my aunty (47) dying last night so in some strange way your post was very therapeutic for me (and its always all about me! haha)
I keep scrolling up to look at the photos...they truly are beautiful :)
Take care,
Nikki (nzceltic)
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 09:22 pm (UTC)
The painting is Gorgeous! You are so lucky to have such a beautiful, lifelike portrait of your darling girl. And the Twinkle toes are fantastic, aren't they! What an awesome way to remember the details of Kyah's wee hands & feet. Both things you will treasure forever.

The book sounds great! Either way would be lovely and would steal the hearts of everyone who reads it. Good luck with the writing.
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 09:37 pm (UTC)
That portrait and her hand and feet prints are just awsome!!! I am so pleased to hear that your christmas went as well as it could. I hope you do turn this journal into a book, i will cue up to buy it. Hope through all the haze you can find some light also :o)
Hugs to you all
Emvuli (tmmb)
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 09:38 pm (UTC)
Beautiful Painting! STUNNING!!!
WOW, what absolutely beautiful momentoes to have with you. You are lucky to have such amazing people in your life. Blessings to you and your whole family!
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 09:43 pm (UTC)
Hi Shanell
Writing a book is a brilliant idea,Mary McCallum is well known and would be an excellent collaborator,and would be helpful with the structure and form of writing your book.I have mentioned in an earlier post that you have a real talent for writing and this project would no doubt be therapeutic for you.
Kyah's portrait is beautiful,the artist has really captured her,and the hand and footprints along with her photo are really quite special.
All the best to your family,I admire you all very much

(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 09:49 pm (UTC)
The portrait and casts
are absolutely beautiful!! I'm looking forward to watching you and the others' shave your heads next year, and hope you reach your goal. ((HUGS)) Selena - j.m1
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 09:55 pm (UTC)
scooby614 (TMMB)
gorgeous....brings a little tear. You know what I really love about how you have taken the pic of Kyah's hands and feet, her mummy and daddys reflections are on there looking over her so she is never without you.

The painting is beautiful,captured her eyes wonderfully, was it painted from a photo, the trueness is amazing.

And yes, you have 2 very big ones ticked off, the book thing was always going to come your way, you have a natural writing style it would have got picked up at some point :)

As you go into the new year with your new beginning may only the very best of things come your way, look after each other and laugh alot :)

much love
(Anonymous) on December 29th, 2008 10:09 pm (UTC)
Wow, what gorgeous, gorgeous pictures. I can't stop looking at them.
Putting Kyah's journey into a book would be such a great thing.
You have told it so beautifully in here, she touches so many hearts and changed so many lives.
You have such an talent Shanell, I really hope this happens for you.
Hugs and kisses, love to you all.