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Gabriel's Big Brother Dylan's Journal Entries  

augustus 8 1997:   Gabriel drools a lot. I like that. Gabriel rolls over a lot. I like him to lay on his back so I can make believe punch him in his nose. He likes that. He likes to get out of his crib. Gabey loves me. Gabey laughs a lot. Gabey talks a lot. Gabey laughs and talks. Four Gabeys in a row! Oh no! Tic-tac-toe! I won! We sleep in the same bedroom. He is my favorite brother because he is happy and he plays with me a lot. Sometimes I will give him toys from my club.

September 3 1997:   Gabriel loves me and he crawls up things to get me. Gabey doesn't like it when he gets his diaper changed. Gabey is a little trouble maker and he likes to play with things that he's not supposed to.

September 5 1997:   Mommy is proud of me because I am Mommy's best boy. I came out of her tummy. So did Gabey. I bet he is a best boy too.

Januari 7 1998:   Gabriel is a good brother and he is my favorite brother and he is my best brother. Ilove him. Gabriel got a Cabbage Patch doll for Christmas. He is nice to him. Gabriel says "Goot yeah." or "goot no." to tell us if he likes food. He likes everything but mashed potatoes. Gabriel and I like to snuggle because we are best friends. 

Mei 5 1999:   Gabriel is happy and he sings a lot but he bites me when  I play too rough with him.  


Gabriel's Star  

A star named

Gabriel William Stuart

is located at

Hercules

17h 51m 27.43s 38.20' 7.97"


You've Just Got to Feel It With Your Heart & Soul by Gabriel William Stuart 10/08/04  
You’ve just got to feel it with your heart & soul
Just go down on the drifting road

You’ve just got to feel it with your heart & soul
You can do anything in they sky 
Into the night 
Away and high

You’ve just got to feel it with your heart & soul
And drift away into the sky
High into the sky tonight

You’ve just got to feel it with your heart & soul


Making Dreams Come True by Kate Schott / Noblesville Times/ April 3, 2004 / Make-a-Wish Trip  
Every day before he leaves for work, Tim Whisman rips off the previous day ’ s page from a trivia tear-off calendar and leaves his 13 daughter Alison a message. The note usually includes a drawing and a few words of affection, but always has a number. He started around 100. Today, the number was a zero. Since January, the Whisman family has been counting down the days until they leave for Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. While many families head to warmer locations during spring break, this outing is special, especially for the Whisman family. This trip is a dream come true for Alison. The Noblesville Middle School student, her parents and her 13-year-old cousin Kimberly received the vacation courtesy of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Indiana, several volunteers and the generosity of a local business. Make-A-Wish Foundation grants wishes for children who have life-threatening illnesses. In Indiana, nearly 200 Hoosier children see their dreams become realities each year. Today, Alison, a heart-transplant recipient, and 7-year-old Gabriel Stuart of Fishers, who has leukemia, joined those ranks. Matt Ferch, community and external events manager for Make-A-Wish Foundation of Indiana, said children with life-threatening illnesses typically don ’ t get to experience many of the pleasures of childhood. “ A good majority of the kids, their time is spent dealing with their illness in some shape or form, ” Ferch said. “ The wish is their chance to be a kid again and enjoy something really fun. It ’ s a chance for the family to be together and be joyful. ” 
Children usually are referred to the organization through doctors or someone connected with the family. If a child meets the medical requirements, two wish-granting volunteers meet with the family and work behind the scenes to make the child ’ s wish come true. For Gabriel and his family, the timing of their trip to LEGOLAND in Carlsbad, Calif., was a godsend. Scott and Michelle Stuart said
day their son seemed mentally defeated by his illness, Make-A-Wish called to tell them his wish was being granted. Gabriel was diagnosed with acute lymphoblast leukemia April 28, 2003. Michelle Stuart said her son has spent much of the past year receiving chemotherapy. With treatment, Scott Stuart said Gabriel has an 80 percent chance of beating his illness. The leukemia has depleted most of Gabriel ’ s white blood cells, so he is very susceptible to infections. Everything around him must
exceptionally clean, Michelle Stuart said. Gabriel has spent 25 days in the hospital since being diagnosed and has had 12 blood transfusions
the past month. “ We went through a lot these past couple months, ” Scott Stuart said. “ This trip has really given him a new attitude. ” The trip comes at a time when Gabriel has turned a corner: Thursday marked his last day of intense chemotherapy. Gabriel said he is happy his entire family, including older brothers Braxton, 15, and Dylan Helminger, 12, are going with him. The
also will visit Sea World and the San Diego Zoo while in California. “ It ’ s pretty much been my dream, ” Gabriel said of his visit to LEGOLAND. “ I love LEGOS. ” The Stuart ’ s are amazed at what Make-A-Wish has done for their son. A limousine drove them to the airport this morning, a doctor
California has been informed of Gabriel ’ s condition and will be on call for him and a rental car will be waiting for them when they
plane. “ They do a great job planning, ” Scott Stuart said. “ They do everything from the transporta-tion to the meals you ’ ll eat while you It has just been zero stress for us. ” Added Michelle Stuart: “ It ’ s nice that they give them a wish, but then they do so much more. ” Strangers who care Both the Whisman and Stuart families initially didn ’ t think their children qualified for the Make-A-Wish program, since they thought
intended for terminally ill-children. Alison ’ s mother, Paula Whisman, said they found out about the Make-A-Wish Foundation through Alison ’ s transplant coordinator
Hospital for Children. “ It ’ s just a wonderful thing, ” Paula Whisman said of the trip. “ I ’ m sure this is something that we maybe could have went for a day
a whole week. ” Tim Whisman agreed. “ They do it right, ” he said. “ They ’ re a make-your-day organization. ” Alison had a heart transplant from her twin brother, who was asphyxiated at birth, when she was 3-1/2 days old. Although her parents
is as vigorous as other children her age, a body can reject a donated organ at any time. Alison takes 11 medications twice a day in order
remain healthy. She said she ’ s always liked Disney movies and enjoys art. Her original wish was to meet an animator, but all Disney animators work
Barbara, Calif. She ’ ll visit Disney World, Universal Studios and Sea World while in Florida. “ I felt good and happy that they care so much, ” Alison said of the people who have arranged for her trip. The wishes of Alison and Gabriel were made possible because of two local businesses. Indiana Members Credit Union held several
raisers to fulfill Gabriel ’ s wish. Pennie Herbert, director of community development for the Credit Union, said Make-A-Wish has a
place in their hearts because a member ’ s child, who was diagnosed with a life-threatening illness, had a wish granted by the foundation. Hare Chevrolet in Noblesville donated the entire amount needed to fulfill Alison ’ s wish. Owner David Cox called the Make-A Foundation a “ top-drawer ” organization and said he was pleased the company ’ s donation was funding the wish of a Hamilton County
“ We ’ ve been a part of this community forever, ” he said. “ We like to give back. I ’ m always glad to help somebody else out, especially...
Pals Always by Raygan Swan / Indy Star / February 16, 2006 / Officer Kevin Kobli  
A bond formed with an 8-year-old boy whose life was cut short by cancer has changed Fishers Police Officer Kevin Kobli's life forever.
Their story is one of friendship, courage and, ultimately, heartbreak for Kobli, who recently was named Officer of the Year by the Indiana Association of Chiefs of Police for the impression he left on Gabe Stuart, a Fishers boy who died of leukemia last March.
The boy's parents say the friendship became a highlight of Gabe's young life.
The two first struck up a conversation in the summer of 2004 at an Arby's restaurant in Fishers.
Kobli, in full uniform dining with a few other officers, could sense Gabe staring at him from afar.
He smiled and waved at Gabe, thinking to himself the boy must be sick. Gabe had thin hair and a pale face.
The officers left shortly after Gabe and his father, Scott Stuart, so Kobli grabbed a silver junior officer's badge from inside his squad car and handed it to Gabe, who sat in the back seat of his father's car.
"I told him, 'If anyone ever messes with you, tell 'em you're Kevin's partner,' " he recalled.
Gabe's eyes widened as he thanked Kobli.
The gesture, which took only seconds, personifies the best in law enforcement, says the police chiefs association.
When the officer told Gabe they were partners, the boy took it seriously. He began giving verbal warnings and writing speeding tickets to his family members.
The junior badge Gabe wore on his shirt proved to be a badge of courage for the next few months during aggressive procedures at Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis to treat his leukemia. He wore the badge constantly throughout the ordeal.
Grateful for the attention his son received from Kobli, Scott Stuart tracked down the officer at the Police Department to thank him.
The conversation led to several more visits between Gabe and Kobli.
One visit at Riley was especially difficult for Kobli, 27. After receiving a call from Stuart, Kobli learned Gabe was not expected to live much longer, maybe just a few weeks.
"It was a tearful moment in that room for me," Kobli said. "He asked me if I had caught any bad guys that day. He always wanted to hear stories about police work."
As Gabe's time narrowed, Kobli planned a special gift for his buddy. With the help of other officers at the department, Kobli made a shadow box that contained a real police badge, handcuffs and photos of Kobli and Gabe.
On the shadow box, Kobli called Gabe a true hero's hero.
Officers sometimes forget how a simple "hi" or kind gesture can affect the life of a child, Kobli said. Gabe made him more aware of that.
The relationship also prompted the Police Department to start a Books and Badges program in which officers read books to children at Hamilton Southeastern schools.
Occasionally, others in the community with sick children call upon Kobli for a visit, but the officer hasn't accepted any appointments.
"I never want to get that close to another kid again," he said. "He was special. Ever since I met him, I wanted to do everything for him."
To keep Gabe's memory close to his heart, Kobli keeps two photos of the boy tucked in the visor of his squad car and visits his grave regularly.

Funeral Statement from Fishers Police Department  

            A hero’s hero.  This is the inscription within the shadow box which we gave to Gabe, making him an honorary member of the Fishers Police Department.  This is not just a catchy saying, Gabe truly is our hero and inspiration.  We work within a profession that has countless examples of bravery, determination, and dedication within it.  Within the law enforcement community we have recently seen officers facing the toughest circumstances one can imagine, including fighting for ones own life.  Yet here we sit today, completely in awe of an 8 year old boy, who to us epitomizes bravery, determination, and dedication.  Gabe did not lose his last fight, he battled like a true warrior for God and his family and fulfilled God’s calling.  We thank God for the impact he has had on all of our lives.  Imagining Gabe in heaven we can picture him stopping the other angels, informing them that he is a police officer, and writing them a written warning for flying too fast in heaven.  Stuart family, thank you for sharing such a special gift with us and the world.  God, thank you for blessing us with someone so special like Gabe.  Lastly Gabe, we love you, will miss you, and feel much safer knowing that our ‘partner’ is looking down at us from heaven. 


Gabe & Dylan's Star Wars Rules  
1) No one is invincible.

2) Stealing, smuggling, murder, treason, torture and assassination are NOT allowed! (If you're going to do it, don't get caught!)

3) Shields can cover cities but not people.

4) NO ILLEGAL BOMBS!

5) You can't start a war without telling the other person.

Gabriel's Favorite Jokes  
When Gabriel was little, he told the same joke over & over, like little people do. He loved it every single time, like he had never heard it or told it before!

Question: Where does a sheep get his hair cut?
Answer: At the Baa-Baa Shop.


Not long before he died, he had a new favorite joke. Being the con-artist he was, he was charging the nurses & doctors 25 cents to hear it (&, for some reason, they were paying him!). He was in isolation, so they would have to gown up to come in to see him. He knew it was funny, but didn't get the double-meaning... which made it even funnier.

A pirate goes into a bar & orders a shot of rum. The bartender looks at him & says, "Sure... but do you know you have a steering wheel between your legs?" The pirate replies, "Yeah, arrrgggh, it's driving me nuts!"

Gabriel's Make-a-Wish Trip Top Ten List  
1) The dinosaur roller coaster at Legoland.
2) The white-water-rafting ride at Sea World.
3) The 4-D racing movie at Legoland.
4) Talking with Dr. Zoolittle & seeing his show.
5) The Castle Hill jungle gym at Legoland.
6) The Fools with Tools show at Sea World.
7) The dragon roller coaster at Legoland.
8) The repelling ride at Legoland.
9) The skyline rides at Sea World & San Diego Zoo.
10) The free day at the hotel with Mommy.
Brother Dylan's Eulogy (Age 13)  

My Brother Gabriel

By: Dylan Helminger

Gabriel was the best friend I ever had. He always had a caring heart to everyone around him. If you just sat down to talk to him for two minutes, you would never be able to forget him. Gabriel had a special way of making people feel happy and important no matter who they were.

Gabriel would wait all day for me to come home after school so we could play games like Legos or with his castle set. Whenever I got home, he would make me smile, because I knew I had someone that had been waiting for me all day and that made me feel proud to be his brother. Gabriel always wanted to be with me no matter where I was and we were always a close team. Gabriel looked up to me as a big brother. He followed a lot of things I did and like. Some things were; Legos, monkeys, Star Wars and his love of history, especially the Middle Ages.

Gabriel was one of the smartest boys I ever knew. He could play the board game Risk, which some kids even my age can’t understand. He also taught me how to play Chess. He liked me to hold tournaments, just to see who would do the best. He liked when he was the champion, but sometimes when he wasn’t winning; he would get nervous and start changing the rules to make sure he would be by the end of the game. He also could help me with my math homework, because he was very good with numbers his whole life.

When we went to pumpkin patches, we had a great time. Gabriel and I picked out the smallest pumpkins we could find. We always liked little things. Gabriel loved babies! Gabriel always said that when he grew up, he wanted to be a daddy. He was very upset when he found out that when he got radiation, that wouldn’t be possible, but we told him about adoption. I am sure that if Gabriel would have grown up, he would have been a great father.

When Gabriel was very young, when I went to my dad’s house for weekends or week long visits, Gabriel would get upset, because he wanted to see me more, or because he missed me. As he got older, he didn’t get too upset because he liked my dad a lot. My dad’s name is Mark. Gabriel called him Mark-an, because it sounded like Dyl-an. Gabriel used to call me at my dad’s house for random things just because he wanted to talk to me.

Gabriel was kind of weird when he was little. He always loved to eat round foods, like blueberries, peas and Cherrios. When he was a baby, we gave him massages and then blew raspberries on his belly every night before he went to bed. Gabriel was a very happy boy throughout his life. I know we gave him a good life.

Gabriel met a lot of people as he was going through his treatment. He even made friends with some Fishers police officers & some of the Pacers. I think he inspired everyone around him to do good things, because that is what his personality was like. Gabriel always liked to talk a lot, just like our mom does.

When I went to Sea World years ago, I bought Gabriel a stuffed white seal which he named Sealy. It was always his favorite stuffed animal. The last thing that he was holding before he passed away was Sealy. It made me very happy to know that after all of these years he still loved Sealy, so I do not regret buying it. Gabriel always cherished the things he loved and kept those things in his “special drawer,” so he could keep them safe forever.

My brother Gabriel was strong and he fought until the end, but in the end we knew that there was no fighting that could help him to live any longer. I know Gabriel is in a better place now, but I still miss him. He is in heaven, but he is also still in my heart. I love him more than anything in this world. I know I will be sad as I continue to miss Gabriel, but I am lucky that I have people that help me out every day at school and at home.


Gabriel's Funeral Song - I Can Only Imagine by MercyMe  

I can only imagine
What it will be like
When I walk
By Your side
I can only imagine
What my eyes will see
When Your face
Is before me
I can only imagine

Surrounded by Your glory, what will my heart feel
Will I dance for You Jesus or in awe of You be still
Will I stand in Your presence or to my knees will I fall
Will I sing hallelujah, will I be able to speak at all
I can only imagine

I can only imagine
When that day comes
And I find myself
Standing in the Son
I can only imagine
When all I will do
Is forever
Forever worship You
I can only imagine


Gabriel's Funeral Song - Come To Jesus by Chris Rice  
Weak & wounded sinner lost and left to die O,
Raise yor head for Love, is passin' by
Come to Jesus, Come to Jesus, Come to Jesus and Live! 

Now your burden's lifted and carried far away,
And precious blood has washed away the stain,
So sing to Jesus, Sing to Jesus, Sing to Jesus and Live!

Like a newborn baby, don't be afraid to crawl.
And remember when you walk sometimes we fall.
So fall on Jesus, Fall on Jesus, Fall on Jesus and Live!

Sometimes the way is lonely, and steep and filled with pain,
So if sky is dark and pours the rain
Then cry to Jesus, Cry to Jesus, Cry to Jesus and Live!

Oh, and when the love spills over and music fills the night
And when you can't contain the joy inside
Then dance for Jesus, Dance for Jesus, Dance for Jesus and Live!

And with your final heartbeat kiss the world goodbye
Then go in peace and laugh on Glory's side
And fly to Jesus, Fly to Jesus, Fly to Jesus and Live!

Fly to Jesus, Fly to Jesus, Fly to Jesus and Live!
This is What The Card From Gabriel's White Dove Release at His Funeral - His Dove Made It's First Flight That Day & Was Appropriately Named Gabriel  

For centuries, white doves have symbolized the
Holy Spirit, hope, love, peace and the soul.
Today, as we gather to celebrate the life and
cherish each precious moment spent here on
earth with our little angel, Gabriel William
Stuart, we will release a snow white dove in a
symbolic tribute to his spirit.

As Gabriel's dove soars over the horizon out of
our site, we'll softly whisper, "Look,! He is
gone." But, we can be certain, that over that
very horizon, others will look to the sky and
joyfully exclaim, "Look! Here he comes!"

It is our hope, that as Gabriel's dove ascends
into the heavens on his final journey home, you
will send with him your prayers and your love.

It is our wish, that as you experience this
beautiful moment in time, your heart will be
touched by the Holy Spirit, and you will
forever know the hope, the love and the peace
of Gabriel's dove.

"Oh that I had wings like a dove! For
then would I fly away and be at rest."
Old Testament, Psalms 55:6

In Cherished Remembrance

Gabriel William Stuart
1996-2005

A gift...from my family to yours
Ed Porter
Legacy Funeral Alternatives


SOMEDAY by Gabriel, October 2004  
Someday
Oh, someday I know we'll be together forever.
Come to me and I know we won't be apart.
I know our spirits are apart,
but someday we'll be together forever.
Oh, come to me from the sky and let our
spirits be in harmony.
I know we won't be apart.
Oh, come with me and see the moon and stars.
Oh, come with me into the sky.
Come to me and I know we won't be apart.
Oh, someday I know we'll be together forever. 

Gabriel wrote this song titled Someday soon after he told me he knew he was going to die. He was showering & called his dad to come write the words down. Gabriel sang it as fast as he could, without pause, & Scott was trying to keep up writing. Later, Gabriel only changed one word that didn't flow well. He said it was a love song about me. Then he told me to write down the music before he forgot. I explained to Gabe that I couldn't, that not everyone write music. He was on steriods & was edgy & began to panic. I told Braxton he better start writing down the music. Having no idea what he was doing, Braxton ablidged & started scrawling rows of music notes. Soon after, the music therapist at the hospital helped Gabriel by writing the music. Her name is Ann & Gabriel loved her & her beautiful voice, but really wanted to hear a man who was in his 20s sing it. He wanted it to be, "like a heavy-metal-rock-n-roll-love-song." At his funeral it was sung by Aaron Pelsue & his band. 

 http://aaronpelsueband.com 

Aaron is the worship leader at our church. Aaron said, "I don't know if I can sing this is well as Gabriel did, but I'll try." Aaron is awesome & it was perfect. Actually, I couldn't even explain how perfect it was. Afterwards, a man walked up to Aaron & asked him if he wrote the music to Gabe's song. Aaron replied, "No...the little dude did." I felt really proud to be Gabriel's mother, as I always did.

In June, I entered Someday in a the International Library of Poetry's junior contest where it one First Place & the Editor's Choice Award for Outstanding Acheivement. It is now in a hardbound poetry book. Gabriel's song provides a beautiful legacy to his unfaltering faith, creative talent & never-ending love.

Gabriel's Obituary - Newspapers: Indianapolis Star, South Bend Tribune & Berrien County Record on April 1, 2005  





Gabriel William Stuart Age 8, of Fishers, died March 30, 2005. He was born December 12, 1996 in Indianapolis. Gabriel was in the first grade at Harrison Parkway Elementary School in Fishers, an honorary member of the Fishers Police Department, a patient honoree of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and a patient at Riley Children's Hospital. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions be made to Indiana University and noted "In memory of Gabriel W. Stuart" and mailed to the Riley Hospital for Children, Pediatric HematologyOncology, Attn: Linda Hancock & Dr. Paul Haut, 702 Barnhill Dr. Room 4340, Indianapolis, Indiana 46202-5225. Survivors include his father and mother Scott W. and Michelle Haslock Stuart of Fishers, brothers Braxton Stuart, Torey Stuart, Dylan Helminger, paternal grandparents James Stuart, Wilfred and Mary Foist, maternal grandparents John and Cheryl Haslock, Jennifer Simpson, aunts and uncles James (Tammy) Stuart, Barry (Andrea) Foist, Paula (Kenny) Sebasty, Julie Kuhl, Abraham Hempel, Catherine Haslock, Johnny Haslock, and several other family and friends. Services will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday, April 2 in the East 91st Street Christian Church, where visitation will be on Friday from 4 to 8 p.m. Burial will be in Oaklawn Memorial Gardens. Legacy Funeral Alternatives in Memorial Park have been entrusted with arrangements.


Excerpts from “The Private Journal - Thoughts, Letters, Funny Things & Memories”  
Written by: Mommy & Gabriel Stuart

April 8, 2001
Gabriel,

I love you so much, little angel! I am glad that I was chosen to be your mommy. I hope that you are always a very happy little boy, because you mean the world to me! You are so special! I will always love you & take care of you. Thank you for giving me so many reasons to smile & a reason to wake up each day – you are my inspiration.
Love,
Mommy

July 14, 2001
Gabe,
This summer when we were at Panama City Beach, Florida visiting your grandpa & grandma, you learned how to swim under water. You took swimming lessons when you were two-years-old, but didn’t participate much. In Florida, Braxton, Dylan & I were swimming through each other’s legs & you decided you could do it, too! That was just over one month ago. You look so funny & cute, because whether you are under the water or on top of it, you always have your eyes wide open & have a huge smile! I am always so proud of you, Gabriel.
I love you,
Mommy

Gabriel,
Today I was complaining about being chubby & you held my face, like you always do when you are talking with me, & said, “Mommy, you can’t be chubby, because you are just so lovable!” You always have seen the good in everything – that is one of your gifts. You actually said “WUVABLE,” because you can’t say the “L” sound. You also have trouble with blend sounds with Rs, so you still call your brother “WAXTON.” You are such a little cutie bug!
Mommy

Gabe,
One day you were doing something a little bit naughty & your dad told you to stop. You turned to him with your hands on your hips & said, “How does it feel when you talk to me like that? Does it feel good? No, I don’t think so. Mommy said you should use nice words & a happy heart…” – all in one breath! Although your dad wasn’t very pleased & he explained to you that he needs to tell you right from wrong, I had to smile. Sometimes you are so much like me.
I love you,
Mommy

Hi, Gabriel!
You & I are sitting on your bed & you asked me to write that you like to eat at Bob Evans. You say you like macaroni & cheese & little pancakes & sausages.

This week we got a new kitty together. Her name is Seven, but you keep calling her, “Chicken Little.” This morning she got into the bath with me & I called you to see & we both laughed & laughed. I thought cats hate water??!!?

You want me to write, “Mommy, you’re soooo perfect & I love you, too! Gabey, you always treat me so nicely. I bet when you are a teenager you won’t think I’m so perfect, but it’s so nice to hear now!

I love you more than anything in the world! You make my life happy.
Love,
Mommy

Mommy,
I eat ice cream so much & it drips so much that I go outside & put a towel on it. Mommy, I love you so much. We are best friends, right? I have a game I made up & it’s called “Dinosaurs,” too. I play “Adventures” with Dylan & it’s so fun. Dylan has 27 turtles. Dylan is very nice & he plays with me a lot. He plays with me the most of the brothers & everything.
Gabriel

Hi, Gabriel,
Your Aunt Paula had surgery this week & I went to South Bend to see her at the hospital & spent the night. There have only been a few nights that we have been away from each other, but when I am gone I am lonely & miss you so very much. I don’t feel complete when we are apart, but every time we talk on the phone you make me so happy. One time you told me that it seemed like I was gone so long that you were wondering if I still had make-up on my lips. You hate lipstick & lip gloss! You make me wipe my lips off over & over & then you inspect them before I can kiss you! You are so funny!
Mommy

Gabriel,
We had a very fun & busy week together this week. Our week was packed because we did so many great things. I really enjoy the time I spend with you!

Here are some of the fun things we did:
Sunday:
You went to Sunday school & I helped in your classroom. You learned to “Choose to do right.” We played at the park. We baked cookies.
Monday:
You played with your brothers & the neighborhood kids outside. You like to play “Traffic” on your bikes. You don’t like to ride, you love to be the police officer & stop people & give tickets. You want to be a police officer when you grow up. We watched Tarzan.
Tuesday:
We went to a really good Italian restaurant. You ate cheese pizza, one of your favorite foods! We went to the bookstore & bought, “No More Monsters for Me” & ordered “Jack & the Beanstalk.” You went to see Dr. Bruns so he could check your ears. We went to The Snowshack for snow cones.
Wednesday:
We went to Glendale Mall to buy new school clothes & to go to the library. You love to play on the kids’ computers! We read lots of books, including two versions of “Jack & the Beanstalk.” We went swimming with Aunt Julie & lots of kids. We planted beans, just like Jack, in a can at home. We made sticker pictures together.
Thursday:
We went to The Children’s Museum ALL DAY. It was the best day we ever had there together. We went to our favorite outdoor farm market & listened to a band play. We ate peaches in the car on the way home – their juice dripped all down your arms!
Friday:
You had friends over & played outside a lot. We went to Spencer’s Farm & picked 6 quarts of raspberries. You love berries more than anything. I think you have eaten a million blueberries in your life! We watched “Hook.” We made a “Lucky List” & thought of lots of reasons we are lucky! I am so lucky to be blessed with you.
I love you,
Mommy

August 25, 2001
Gabriel,
This week you got a new set of tubes in your ears. You hearing was back to about 50 percent & you had so many infections since your last set of tubs came out. Every time you finished antibiotics, it would come right back. The nurse picked you up for surgery in a battery-operated Jeep for you to drive. When you stepped on the gas, it went so fast that it jerked your head back. Then you tried to wave good-bye to Dylan, Daddy & I & almost crashed. You were swerving all over. We could hear you laughing all the way down the halls. How funny! It made it much easier to watch you go that way & you were back in no time.
I love you,
Mommy

September 23, 2001
Gabriel,
On September 11, four planes were hijacked & thousands of people were killed. It caused things to change in America & people are fearful right now. Since that day, you keep asking me questions over & over & refer to it as, “That movie where all those people got hurt.”

I picked you up from preschool as soon as I saw the news & then we went to pick Dylan up after school let out. I wanted to take you somewhere quiet so I could talk to you about what had happened in a mom’s words. You are so perceptive & knew right away that something was different. You are so insightful that you amaze me.

Yesterday, you came home from school said you thought the quote, “United We Stand, Divided We Fall” was like “Underwear is Fun to Wear.” Oh, Gabe, you can even make the saddest times worth smiling about. You are my sunshine on even the cloudiest of days. I love you so much & wish that you could keep the innocence you have. I promise to always try to protect you, my baby.
Mommy

November 22, 2001
It’s almost your fifth birthday. You say all you want is a Lego Knight’s Castle set. I also bought you a frog cage & some tadpoles. You only want to invite your three best friends to share your birthday with you; Austin, Ryan & Tess. You like so many kids, but you love your best friends. You are very committed.

Today is Thanksgiving & you tried pumpkin pie for the first time. You didn’t like it but you ate the rest of your dinner. After lunch we went to the theatre to see Monsters, Inc. You laughed so much. You love going to the theatre. You love to get snacks & watch the movie with big eyes while talking about it all the way through & you like playing the games in the lobby.

Right now you are always playing with your Rescue Heroes action figures. You love them & play with them all of the time. When we had our house fire, they were the only thing you cared about getting out. Luckily, they were in a big, plastic storage container & the firefighters were able to get them out.
Love,
Mommy

December 12, 2001
Gabriel,
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!, my very favorite five-year-old boy! I love you today, I will love you as much when you are 15 & I will love the same amount when you are 55. The depth of my love for you will never change - unless it grows, which I cannot imagine possible! You fill my heart & make my cup runneth over.
Love,
Your Mommy & #1 Fan

January 30, 2002
Hello, Gabey-the-Baby!
I know I tell you that I love you enough - I just hope you always hear in my words & in my voice just how much I mean it. I hope I always show you in the right way, both big & small. The time we spend together means so much to me. You are such an important part of every single day of my life & always make me feel so special.

The other night when we were in bed, I asked you if you thought you might want to have children when you grow up. You said, “YES!,” very excitedly. I asked you how many & you said, “Just one.” Then I asked if you would like to have a boy or a girl & you said, “Either is good, but maybe a boy.”

I am already excited that someday I will be blessed with having grandchildren. You love the babies I watch one day & you have always talked about being a daddy. I began to tell you that when you & your wife go out, I will watch your child – how we could make cookies, do crafts, watch movies – then, suddenly, you started cracking up laughing. After finally catching your breath, with tears in your eyes, you said, “Silly! You’re gonna be my wife!!!” You may think I am silly now, but you, my quirky angel, are the silly one!
Mommy

March 2002
A few days ago, you came running from the window to me, your hands shaking & said, “Mommy, the ROBBERS are coming…the ROBBERS are here!” I couldn’t figure out why you were so nervous. You kept saying it, so I figured there must be some pretty scary people outside. You grabbed my hand & pulled me into the kitchen windows where you had been. You said, “Don’t you see them, Mommy? Right up there in the tree!” And, there in front of our eyes were three robins – the first sign that spring is here. We had been waiting for weeks to see them!

Later that day we walked across the street to see our neighbor, Pat, because we haven’t seen her outside for a long time. We both love her & right now she is sick with cancer. Cancer scares me & I worry about her so much. She is going through radiation treatment & is very sick. The very first thing she said when we walked up her driveway was, “Did you see the robins came back today?”

Spring is here! Yeah!
I love you, Mommy

May 6, 2002
Today Torey was playing a war where you try to get people on their knees & then they lose the game. Braxton doesn't play. Then a guy, one of his friends accidentally hit him in the eye. I don’t know who it is. The game was called, “Charge.” Torey was trying to sneak up on Dylan & that was bad. Then I went inside & James had to go home. Before that we ate dinner. Then my mom read me a story. I love my mama, because I don’t know why. It’s hard to say stuff. I love Dylan, too. I don’t know why. Mom, I love you so much. I love you so much, Mom.

My mom read me Peter Pan. And we read it & read it & read it. I love her too much. Tonight I’m gonna watch a movie with my mama. I love her too much. I love her too much. I love her, love her, love her more than anything in the whole wide world, more than anything that is made.

I love the computer, especially I love ice cream & especially I love my friends. I love my mom even when she hugs me & we wrestle & when we play tug-of-war. I only have one kidney. I could have had my kidney knocked out.

I love my mommy to pieces, to pieces.
Gabe

September 22, 2002
I started kindergarten. I have a good time at it. We bought some stuff for my classroom treasure chest. It has prizes you can bring home if you’re good. I’m good at school! I get eight WOWs & no REMINDERS.

Tonight Mommy & me went through the door & our cat had a mouse. Mommy screamed & then ran inside & then I cried. She didn’t scare me, the mouse did. George had his claws out. Then mommy laughed & said, “I hate a mouse!” & I said, “I hate a mouse, too!” Then we kissed a lot of times.

That’s all for tonight for real.
Gabriel Stuart

Gabey William,
I am so glad that I am your mom. You are a very sweet boy! You fill me with love & happiness. You make me feel special & more wanted than anyone ever has. I love how you look in my eyes when you talk to me & reach your hand up behind my neck & twist your fingers around & around in my hair.

I ask you to close your eyes & tell me if you can see me in your heart. You say I look like, “Curly hair & soft skin.” (Not a bad description!)

I am so proud that you are going to kindergarten. I was sad at first, but when I realized how much you are learning & growing, I had to be so pleased for you.

You mean the world to me. I love you. I love your face, your voice, your little pointed chin, your spine, your little, crooked, ridged, upper lip. In my eyes, you are so beautiful & so perfect.

If I could freeze today & keep you just as you are, I might – but I am also so much looking forward to watching you grow up. I know I will always be as proud of you as I am today.
I love you,
Mommy

November 1, 2002
Gabe,
Today you came home from school & said, “I am supposed to promise you to be drug free. There are good drugs & bad drugs. Instead of promising, I think I will do Eenie-Meenie-Minie-Moe when I grow up.” Ohhhh, Gabriel!

Mommy loves you to the moon & back! I hope when you grow up you find lots more love.
xoxoxo, Mommy

February 2, 2003
Hello, my favorite six-year-old!
This weekend I took your cousin Heather to Cleveland to visit her boyfriend. You stayed at home with your dad. You asked me to leave you the phone number to the hotel I would be at. I wrote t on your dry erase board & signed it with the same picture I always make for you. [A smiley face with curly hair, a heart & a smiley face with little, spiked hair.]

When I looked in my purse, you had snuck in a note that said: [smiley face with spiked hair, heart, smiley face with curly hair] & 578-290 The 5 was written backwards & you had forgotten to write down the last number in our phone number, but it was so sweet of you to remind me in case I forgot! I could never forget you though!

On Friday you told me that your teacher wanted to borrow your tape with The Hokey Pokey on it. You paused & then said, “Wait…maybe she said Yellow Polka Dot Bikini.” You make me laugh all of the time. I love you so much, Gabriel. I wish sometimes that I could freeze you & keep you small!
Mommy

March 25, 2003
I love my mommy so, so much. I even do when I do fun stuff & kinda forget about her. She’s still my favorite mother. Dylan is my favorite brother. He plays all this stuff with me & takes care of me. So does my mommy.
Gabriel

March 27, 2003
Dearest Gabriel,
You have been feeling sick & aching for over six weeks & I am so scared that something is wrong. I feel it in my heart. I keep taking you to the doctor but they don’t think it’s anything anymore. One time they thought you might have a virus. Another time said you have growing pains. They just say to come back if you don’t get better & I keep taking you back. Your hips & knees hurt & you have a hard time some mornings even walking. People say you are manipulating me. I don’t think so & I am very confused. I don’t think I could live if you were sick & I can’t stand you hurting any more. You are truly my everything.
I love you,
Mommy
Gabriel's Grandad - By Gabriel Stuart April 2003  
Mommy:    What do you think of when you think of Grandad's house?

Gabriel:    My Grandad's house has ducklings. Grandad calls them "the girls." They are white and black. They live in Grandad's pond. He has boats in his pond, too. Sometimes we go fishing there.

Mommy:    What do you think of your Grandad?

Gabriel:    I like my Grandad because he is good. He looks like he is tall, skinny and blackish hair.

Mommy:    What does Grandad like to do?

Gabriel:    He likes to work on his computer and work on wood.

Mommy:    Why do you like to go to Grandad's house so much?

Gabriel:    I like to go to my Grandad's house to play with my cousins and stuff. Sometimes we build forts in the woods. The boys are awesome against the girls. The girls are like, "Wow!" Braxton is on the girls' teams though. At Grandad's house, some people like each other and some people love each other, it's weird. No one doesn't like each other.

Gabriel:    I was wondering something, where was Grandad born?

Mommy:    Hmmmm, why don't you think Grandad was born in America?

Gabriel:    I just don't, Mommy, but I know you were born in America.

Mommy:    Is there anything else you'd like to say about Grandad?

Gabriel:    I love him. I love him with all my heart!

Mom:    Why?

Gabriel:    Because he's my Grandad, silly!
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