Thursday, December 23, 2010

December 23, 2010: Fun in the snow


What a day!  We are all gonna sleep well tonight.  We started the day with some snow ball fights and snow man making.  Ali absolutely LOVED the snow!  She would go out for a bit, then come in and take a break, then head back out again.  The boys played really well with her.  We started making a "Snow Muskateer," but momma got her this really funny little snowball maker and it was  HIT!  She just loved making and throwing snowballs!

Then, my stepbrother Mark and I head off for Wolf Creek Pass.  Mark didn't ski due to a shoulder injury he has, but he wanted to come along for the ride.  That was GREAT because it's a little over an hour jaunt from my mom's place to the mountain through some pretty intense terrain toward the end.  It was comforting having him riding shotgun since he's been up that way before and knew how to get there.

It rained and snowed the whole way there, and snowed all day long.  The peak is at just under 12,000 feet, so it was pure snow up there as well as at the base.  I didn't have to wait in a single line all afternoon!  You could just ski right onto the lift.  Meanwhile, Purgatory was sold out?  Glad I missed out on those lines!  I literally got in as much skiing as my body could handle, which wasn't a lot considering it's been 19 years since I last skied and I was skiing at 12,000 feet!  That was ROUGH!  I had a lot of  trouble catching my breath.  However, after saying all that, the skiing was amazing.  They got 11" of snow last night and it snowed all day on top of the 80" base they already have.  There was just smooth soft skiing anywhere on the mountain you wanted to be.  Awesome.  I am hooked again!

Skiing equipment has changed A LOT since the last time I was on a mountain!  The skis are parabolic instead of straight now, well WAY more than they were in the '80's.  There was a hint of that curve in my 4Ss back in the day, but NOTHING like now.  Skiing long skis was the rage back in the day, and now everyone isn't even on skis, they are on snowbards.  Those of us on skis are all on these short fat funny looking skis that make life SO much easier on the mountain!  It really was a ton of fun even struggling with fogging goggles, bad rental boots, and poor visibility.  The rental guy summed it up best, he called it "skiing by Braille!"

Ali got one of her Christmas gifts early today.  It is a roll of paper to color on!  It just goes, and goes, and goes.  When I came home, she was coloring endless pictures with the boys.  Awesome.  After playing in the snow all day, and coloring all evening, she was SO HAPPY.  When I came home, mommy had a relaxed, happy look on her face, and Ali's face was positively glowing.  That's about all you could ask for on vacation, or on any day, right?

God is good.  All the time.

Tomorrow night.... The Polar Express!

Thank you all for sharing your Bella stories.  It was so nice to hear from so many of you!  I know I sound like a broken record, but your comments keep us going.  After going through such an ordeal with so many for so long, quite a bond has been established.  I don't read many blogs other than mainly the other EB blogs, so I don't know how interactive this medium "is supposed to be," but I am so happy that it is as much as it is.  Of course, I would love to see even more participation as I have sang about in so many different ways while on here, but make no mistake, I am so happy to still share our lives with you, and we are so grateful you still keep coming back.  Thank you.

God night.


  1. Tim,

    Sounds like the snow and the hill were made for fun. Good to hear you got out there and enjoyed it.

    Re. blogs, commenters, feedback and such, I think we are all a little in the dark as far as levels of interaction and such. We'll probably laugh about our naivety in twenty (?ten) years' time. All I know is that , as I said in my reply to your post yesterday, the whole blogging/responding that came for me via Bella and you has been a pleasure, providing rich reward.

    I ca just see Ali and her cousins coursing through that roll of paper so fast you'll have to replace it in the blink of an eye.

    Enjoy family and the joy of the season.



    PS I made a mistake in my last comment - my very first delurking reply to you was on Sept 21 (not late August, as I'd thought). Those were intense times - and days felt like weeks (and I speak merely as an outside observer and reader). I hardly believe my interaction with your words is only a little over three months old.

    You are all doing so well as a family to move onward with zest and hope in the aftermath of Bella's passing. She's still taking us all on the big adventure, though, isn't she? Bless her glorious quirky heart...

  2. Forgot to comment on my favorite Bella moment on the last post - so here it is...

    I absolutely LOVE her fabulous socks of the day!!! As a nurse who wears the standard blue surgical scrubs at work every night, fun socks are the only thing we can do to have fun with the seasons! A lot of us on my unit have huge holiday sock collections. I wear my christmas / chanukah / holiday socks to work immediately after thanksgiving in order to be able to wear them all at least once!

  3. Hi Tim.

    Well it's Christmas Eve over here in Sweden, which is when we celebrate Christmas.
    I know that this years Christmas will propably be hard on you, so I'm praying extra hard and sending lots of positive thoughts your way.

    So, Merry Christmas, to two amazingly strong and wonderful parents, and one of the most awesome little girl in the world.


  4. Wow, it seems you've had a lot of fun. Great! It is nice to hear that you all feel good. At least in the daytime. Have a nice Christmas Eve!


  5. Merry, Merry, sweet family!

    Mountains to ski...a roll of paper to color on...a fire in the fireplace...glowing Yes, God is good! Wishing you a day today to match the one you had yesterday.

    With affection,

    A friend in NC

  6. Bella, just like Jesus, was born with a message and lesson from God. May your hearts be filled with joy this holiday.

    With love,
    Carol in Ohio

  7. Hi Tim. I missed a few days of the blog because I'm in boiling hot Buenos Aires and don't have always Internet.
    I'm glad to see that your are with Tracy and her boys and so much snow!!
    Christmas is always a special day and it will be even more this year, for you and everybody who follow your blog.
    Always praying for The Ringgold family.
    Lots of love,
    Mariana,UK now from Argentina

  8. Dear Ringolds, I'm still here... Im compelled to stay here because of Bella's life, your loss, and the dream for a cure for EB. I work full time and am a mother of 3 children ages 5. 3 and 1, so my days are busy. But with all of these competing demands, I cant forget Bella, your family and your dream. I feel like a bystander who has yet to be used in Gods plan for a cure for EB. I pray for you all and I wait for a time in which I can be used for the greater good. I continue to feel enriched by Bella's life, I'm here and I wont leave. Merry Christmas,
    - Laura

  9. Love that scrunched-up-nose expression on sweet Bella's face. She's waiting till you all will be together again. Meanwhile, live life and have fun but most of all, love and serve God with all your hearts!
    Christmas Blessings to you.

  10. Merry Christmas Ringgold family! I spent the afternoon yesterday at Jennifer Edling's mother's home. The four older kids were with us, but Brian and Jennifer had Daylon out for dialysis. I'll get over there again next week to get a visit in with them! Have a wonderful time at Polar Express and may 2011 be a Blessed year for you all. Thank you for keep up on the blog, I look forward to it every day!

    Tina Zalanka, Corona, CA

  11. Sarah Hickman in ColoradoDecember 24, 2010 at 9:49 AM

    yay!! It looks like you guys are having such a blast! I absolutely LOVE going home!!! There is something so peaceful and special about Bayfield and the mountains! I forgot to tell you my favorite story of Bella... actually it's one of your videos. Its the one of her bouncing out of her bouncy chair! I can only imagine how much fun she must have been having to bounce right out!!! I love that! There is nothing better then a happy baby! It's crazy... because when I started reading your blog, Bella had already had her BMT and didnt really look like little Bella anymore.... but through your blog and all of your wonderful pictures.... I remember Bella as the silly cute little girl that was full of life!! You are such a wonderful dad, and are doing a great job of keeping her memory alive! I hope you all have a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

    All my love,
    Sarah Hickman

  12. Have a Blessed Christmas, Ringgold family! (I love what Carol from Ohio said above! I second that!)
    Karen in Ohio

  13. Make wonderful new memories..wishing the entire family a Merry Christmas. Love ya

  14. Kelly Jones in Tampa, FLDecember 24, 2010 at 12:20 PM

    Happy Christmas Eve! I love the pictures in the snow. I don't know if I've mentioned before but I am originally from the Canadian Rockies so seeing the mountains just lifts my heart. Somehow Christmas seems so much more "Christmas-y" in the snow.

    I am so glad you are enjoying this season. I think about your family during this time and send lots of prayers your way. Another first without your dear Bella. She's in Heaven but we all know she's with you in your hearts every moment of the day. She will share Christmas with you and help bring you comfort and peace. Can you imagine how glorious Christmas must be in Heaven??

    We have a new addition to our tree this year -- a Bella butterfly. It's wonderfully colorful, sparkly and full of personality just like its inspiration -- Bella.

    I've been trying to teach my 4 year old the reason for Christmas (we love the fun Santa aspect and all the trappings but I want him to start understanding that this day is all about Jesus). When I told him that tomorrow is Jesus's birthday, he responded, "well, he needs a birthday cake." How funny that I never thought of it that way. So tomorrow we will be baking Jesus a birthday cake and helping Him blow out his candles. I love how kids minds work.

    I just wanted to log on and let you know I am definitely still here. Sending lots of hugs and love and prayers to your whole family.

    Kelly in Tampa

  15. SO so so happy to hear you all got to relax, ski and be with family and just recharge!

    Here in NJ we have been cooking / cleaning / chopping and dicing for the past 24hrs. We head to church in an hour, then out to dinner with my brother & nieces. Tomorrow we open gifts and have a homecooked me at our house. Then sunday we are having our 1st annual Holiday Open House!

    Merry Christms to all - Love the picture of you and Bella!

  16. Polar express will be wonderful!
    I didn't comment the other day....but my favorite memory was celebrating Bella's first birthday ;)

  17. Wow! What a wonderful day you had! Glad to see your family having a terrific vacation...and a change of scenery. Ali looks like she's having a great time. Have a snowball fight for me!


  18. Ringgold Family,

    Merry Christmas! Welcome to our beautiful state! I think it feels a little closer to Heaven here, especially on a snow-covered mountain top. I grew up in Orange County, and I do miss the ocean at times, but Colorado always feels like home. I love the bright blue sky and crisp, fresh air. Even on a cold day, the warm sun is such a surprise. I'm sure your friends and family equipped you with sunscreen! (My sister just visited with her 10-month-old daughter, from Seattle. After going to the park, and lots of walks, she asked if I had any baby sunscreen! She said they hadn't seen the sun in months!).

    My prayers are with you all this Christmas and I'm so glad you are with family. It may not have been the Christmas we were all dreaming of, but maybe the last "suffering" Christmas for babies like Daylon, thanks to all the people Bella has touched.

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful daughters with all of us.

    Merry Christmas!

    Karen Steiner
    Denver, CO

  19. Susan and I must be alike....she keeps "stealing" my thoughts. :) It does my heart good and puts a smile on my face to hear that you all are enjoying yourselves.

    The scrunched nose of Bella...I love it. Clara does that frequently and I always think she is smiling with her entire melts my heart seeing sweet Bella doing it.

    Merry Christmas!

    Denise WI

  20. I'm so glad you got some great skiing in while you were there. How awesome. And I'm glad to hear that Ang got to relax and Ali had some fun coloring with her cousins. Good times!!

    I love the picture of you and Bella. So adorable.

    Lots of Love,
    Amber, Craig, Malorie, and Liam
    The McLaughlin Family, CA