Last Friday was the 3rd annual Jiggy Day Celebration. Faced with a lifetime of October 8th's without her sister, Cass first envisioned this day as a celebration instead of a heartbreak. She wanted her future children to one day be able to love and appreciate Aunt Jiggy and her legacy.
Jiggy Day generally begins early at Angie's Restaurant for breakfast with the girlfriends. This year we had a couple girlfriends missing who weren't allowed to skip cheer practice on game day (we missed you Lindsay and Maren). Dean also had to be out of town on business...very sad for us all.
All kinds of nonsense generally ensues when these girls all gather together. They are such a treat to be around. They can always make me smile.
I can't imagine being their innocent young age and being plunged into such a heartbreaking circumstance losing a close friend. I adore each one of them and the unique relationship we have developed. I watch them closely, constantly, and love them deeply for what they have had to experience. They amaze me!
This is Sir Francis Bacon (which also happens to be the name of an awesome set of powder skis made by Line). We had a great time making him out of balls of butter scooped off our French Toast.
We never discuss what we will wear on this day, but we always end up in our Jiggy t-shirts. The girls sometimes call me Mama G and I wear the name proudly!
I like to give them something fun and spontaneous to celebrate the day. Last year it was a giant container of animal crackers, because they always left me animal crackers hidden all over my house. This year it was a jar of Laffy Taffy to remind them of all the times she made them laugh.
This was Olivia's first Jiggy Day and we couldn't wait to share it with her. Cass prepared Olivia with stories about her Aunt Jiggy. They started off their day with candy for breakfast...well just Cass. Dione celebrated in Los Angeles with Cini Minis for breakfast and in Philadelphia Dean drank 2 Diet Cokes for breakfast in her honor.
On Jiggy Day, red shoes are a must! Together, Olivia and I proudly show off our red shoes.
The cemetery is so peaceful for our family, it is a vital part of our healing... and has been since the beginning. Cass was eager to bring Olivia to the cemetery for the first time and explain to her baby girl how our family feels about this special place.
Olivia brought a beautiful bouquet of yellow flowers to honor her Aunt Jiggy.
We never know what items will show up at the cemetery or who brings them... from beautiful flowers and cupcakes to Diet Cokes and Butterfinger candy bars! And check out those balloons you can almost see them from space! We delight in all of it...right down to the Little Mermaid Pez dispenser.
At the end of the day I take one more trip to the cemetery...to sit and absorb the details of the day. The crows fill the air with their piercing song. The sky has been cloudy and rainy most of the day. As I start to drive away, the skies part and a streaming ray of light pierces through the gray clouds illuminating the ground below. That familiar sting resonates behind my eyes, for I know she is near.