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August 22, 2012 · filed under baby miller

in the end, a pretty nice day

Happy birthday to Baby Miller

I struggled a lot with what to call today, but in the end it felt right to call it Miller’s birthday. And while it wasn’t a happy birthday, exactly, we ended up spending a really nice day together, feeling loved by friends and family, and close to our lost baby.

We ate breakfast at our favorite neighborhood hole in the wall, and then headed out to Great Falls, Virginia for a “hike” appropriate for a pregnant lady. The hike could have been just okay, given that I found it on google and had never been before, but it really ended up being way better than okay; it was the perfect place for the occasion.

We walked about a half mile up the trail along the Potomac River (across the river and a bit upstream from where Andrew proposed almost seven years ago…) and on the way saw a deer, dozens of butterflies, two beautiful herons, and a few tiny frogs.

We came to a point where Andrew hiked down to the rocky riverbed and took a moment to scatter some of Miller’s ashes. Then he built this little cairn (top photo) to mark the spot where Miller became a part of the river.

Miller's Point at Riverbend Park

It was pretty steep so I stayed up on the trail. But I can imagine coming back to this place in the future. Maybe we can teach our boys how to skip stones there, or find frogs in the shallow waters.

We came home to flowers, cookie cake (why is cookie cake so much more delicious than cookies?), a tree planted in Miller’s name, some lovely notes and cards, and an afternoon nap. Tonight we made dinner together to cap off our peaceful day.

the sweetest little baby block

Thinking back on the last year is kind of overwhelming. And thinking about what our future holds can be too (mostly in a good way). But today we didn’t have to think much about either of those things. We could just think about what Miller meant to us and how much love he brought into this world.

Thank you to everyone who has supported us over the last year. It has made all the difference.


  1. AndreaH
    August 22, 2012 9:34 pm

    It sounds like it was just as good as it could be. Looks like it was a beautiful day out too.
    Happy birthday, Miller. xoA

  2. Sian
    August 22, 2012 10:08 pm

    That sounds like an absolutely beautiful day. What a lovely thing to do and now you have a special place for your family to visit in the future. :)

  3. alison
    August 22, 2012 10:27 pm

    So glad it was a peaceful day.

  4. Elaine
    August 22, 2012 10:33 pm

    Happy Birthday sweet Miller!

  5. Janssen
    August 22, 2012 11:30 pm

    I can’t believe it’s been a year – so happy that you could celebrate and mourn together.

  6. Aly @ Breathe Gently
    August 23, 2012 2:12 am

    Happy birthday Miller. x

    Love and hugs to you and Andrew.

  7. Kandi
    August 23, 2012 8:36 am

    Such a sweet way to remember him on his birthday.

  8. Julie
    August 23, 2012 9:02 am

    What a beautiful day celebrating your son. Happy birthday Miller and peace to your family.

  9. K
    August 23, 2012 10:04 am

    I thought about you a lot yesterday and I had so many hopes and also a fair amount of hurt, too.

    Rarely a day goes by that I don’t think about you and Andrew and your boys–all three of them.

    So much love to you all.

  10. heidikins
    August 23, 2012 10:53 am

    I’m so glad.


  11. Audrey
    August 23, 2012 11:32 am

    What a beautiful way to spend Miller’s birthday. And the thought of your boys coming back to that spot and learning how to skip stones brought tears to my eyes. What a wonderful way for all three boys to spend time together.

  12. Lele
    August 23, 2012 11:50 am

    Beautiful! <3<3<3

  13. Zan
    August 23, 2012 12:41 pm

    This sounds like a wonderful way to celebrate Miller’s birthday. Glad you had so many people reach out to you as well. (Would still love to catch up with you soon!)

  14. liz
    August 23, 2012 12:55 pm

    Nothing to say really, just sending virtual hugs to you and your hubby.

  15. Lauren
    August 23, 2012 1:21 pm

    Happy Birthday, Miller. Lots of love.

  16. Carly
    August 23, 2012 1:59 pm

    I’m glad that it turned into such a nice day for you guys. (Nice being a relative term.) Something about the wording “the post where Miller became a part of the river” resonated with me and I absolutely love the thought of you and your boys going there in the future.

  17. Melissa
    August 23, 2012 2:29 pm

    Happy birthday sweet Miller. Janet glad you saw the beauty in the day and dreamed a bit on what the future holds in store for your fam. Looks like a beautiful spot for a beautiul soul. Xoxo

  18. Kristin
    August 23, 2012 3:01 pm

    Bless you and your Miller. Sounds like the best way to celebrate Miller and mourn him as well. I hope that spot becomes a place of many happy memories for you and your family.

  19. terra
    August 23, 2012 3:25 pm

    Happy birthday to sweet Miller. I’m so glad you were able to find a way to honor him in a way that felt right for you. The thought of you with your twin boys learning to skip rocks at a site where Miller will always be is a beautiful one. <3

  20. Laurel of Sass Attack, RIP
    August 23, 2012 3:42 pm

    That sounds just lovely. Happy birthday dear Miller.

  21. Jackie
    August 23, 2012 5:31 pm

    What a beautiful way to spend the day. Thinking of you :)

  22. katelin
    August 23, 2012 6:50 pm

    what a lovely day to celebrate miller! xo

  23. Anna
    August 23, 2012 10:34 pm

    Happy Birthday, Miller. You have a mom and dad that love you very much. I’m glad you were able to have a peaceful day to remember him.

  24. Shari
    August 24, 2012 8:33 am

    Happy Birthday Miller!


  25. doahleigh
    August 24, 2012 12:02 pm

    It sounds pretty perfect. I’m glad you had a good day. And I love the idea of your boys getting to know their brother, playing at a place in the river where you shared part of him. Happy birthday Miller!

  26. Marianne
    August 24, 2012 10:09 pm

    I love that you made this day about love. My heart aches for you, but rejoices at how you’ve lived for Miller and his two little brothers. Many hugs for you and your family.