Mattie Miracle 9th Annual Walk & Family Festival -- Raised over $97,000

Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation Promotional Video

Thank you for keeping Mattie's memory alive!

Dear Mattie Blog Readers,

It means a great deal to us that you take the time to write to us and to share your thoughts, feelings, and reflections on Mattie's battle and death. Your messages are very meaningful to us and help support us through very challenging times. To you we are forever grateful. As my readers know, I promised to write the blog for a year after Mattie's death, which would mean that I could technically stop writing on September 9, 2010. However, at the moment, I feel like our journey with grief still needs to be processed and fortunately I have a willing support network still committed to reading. Therefore, the blog continues on. If I should find the need to stop writing, I assure you I will give you advanced notice. In the mean time, thank you for reading, thank you for having the courage to share this journey with us, and most importantly thank you for keeping Mattie's memory alive.

As Mattie would say, Ooga Booga (meaning, I LOVE YOU)! Vicki and Peter

The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation celebrates its 7th anniversary!

The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation was created in the honor of Mattie.

We are a 501(c)(3) Public Charity. We are dedicated to increasing childhood cancer awareness, education, advocacy, research and psychosocial support services to children, their families and medical personnel. Children and their families will be supported throughout the cancer treatment journey, to ensure access to quality psychosocial and mental health care, and to enable children to cope with cancer so they can lead happy and productive lives. Please visit the website at: and take some time to explore the site.

We have only gotten this far because of people like yourself, who have supported us through thick and thin. So thank you for your continued support and caring, and remember:

.... Let's Make the Miracle Happen and Stomp Out Childhood Cancer!

A Remembrance Video of Mattie

Random Shots of Mattie, Family and Friends

July 5, 2013

Friday, July 5, 2013

Friday, July 5, 2013

Tonight's picture was taken in July of 2003. Though Mattie had access to the Atlantic Ocean, he preferred being on the deck of the house and playing with the hose. We spent a lot of time with that yellow hose that week. The deck and the chairs on the deck were the cleanest around thanks to Mattie's spraying!

Quote of the day: Good memories are like charms...Each is special. You collect them, one by one, until one day you look back and discover they make a long, colorful bracelet. ~ James Patterson

When I lived in Boston, I remember Peter's family talking about Pickity Place. But since I had never visited it, I really had no idea what it was. Today we drove to Mason, NH to experience Pickity Place for ourselves. Since 1786, there has been a quaint little red cottage which has graced the hills of southern New Hampshire, seemingly untouched by time. The enchanting cottage was chosen by Elizabeth Orton Jones as the model for her illustrations in Little Red Riding Hood (Little Golden Books, 1948). Today it is a mecca for gardeners, foodies and anyone looking for inspiration and relaxation. This little cottage is named Pickity Place and it is located on a hilltop hideaway at the end of the winding dirt road.

When I was a child, I read Jones' Little Red Riding Hood and I am familiar with the book's illustrations. What I did not realize though was the house illustrated in the book was based on a real life house..... Pickity Place. In addition to the historical significance, Pickity place also treats you to a five course lunch and the opportunity to walk around in their beautiful gardens. Not just any ordinary gardens, but it is within these gardens that many of the herbs used to prepare our lunch originated!

As you enter Pickity Place, you are greeted by this whimsical sign. As you can see, the sign says "Grandmother's house (the character in Little Red Riding Hood) was built in 1786. This cottage was used by Elizabeth Orton Jones to illustrate her version of the book Little Red Riding Hood."

This is a profile of Little Red Riding Hood's House! It is a real cutie, charming, and surrounded by lush and beautiful vegetation. Though it takes about 90 minutes to drive there from Boston, you would be amazed to know that the entire dining room of the house was filled today. In fact people who came without lunch reservations were turned away. It is that popular!

One of the rooms inside Red's house is a tribute to the story. Look at this adorable room, filled with Red Riding Hood's cape, dolls, and if you look closely you can even see a wolf in Grandma's bed!

Before lunch, I snapped a photo of Peter with his parents in front of Pickity Place. The cottage's dining room serves lunch in three shifts. One at 11:30am, the next at 12:45pm, and the final shift at 2pm. I imagine they believe that giving people an hour and 15 minutes to eat a five course lunch is enough time. But for a person like myself who eats slowly, it most definitely wasn't enough time and I felt rushed.

I snapped several photos of the gardens that surrounded Pickity Place. They are inviting, lush, and they also have cozy nooks to sit in and people watch or relax. This cute little red table and chairs in the garden caught my attention. It caught my attention because if Mattie were with us, he would have gravitated right to that area!

What do you think of this old tree? This tree sits right in front of the cottage and the shape of it alone is intriguing but when you stare at its girth, you have to imagine it is quite an old tree.

After lunch, Peter and I walked through various gardens where we saw many of the edible flowers we ate at lunch as well as the numerous beds of herb gardens!

At lunch I had a homemade lavender lemonade. I am very familiar with lavender, but not in terms of drinking or eating it! Today I learned it makes a wonderful herb to place into a drink. These beautiful purple flowers in this photo are lavender. There were beds and beds of them and what you can't see in this photo are the hundreds of bumble bees buzzing about this lavender. I can see why they are attracted to it!

This is a photo of Peter and me in the Pickity Place Dining Room! Our five course lunch consisted of:
1) Fresh Herb Spread
2) Toasted Corn Soup with Cilantro and Ancho Chile Cream
3) Shaved Cauliflower and Radicchio Salad
Multi-Grain Bread
4) Cuscino Pasta (pasta pillow)
or Crimson Fettuccine Primavera
Garden Tomato with Spinach and Basil and 5) Local Berries over Rum Pound Cake with Almond Sugar.

On our drive home, we stopped along the side of the road to snap a photo of the beautiful mountains in New Hampshire! The sky was a perfect blue and the clouds looked just like cotton.

However, on our drive home from New Hampshire, we got into a car accident. We weren't far from Peter's parents house. Maybe 30 miles away. At an off ramp, we were stopped behind a SUV. The SUV then began merging with the traffic, so Peter also checked for on coming traffic and started to merge as well. However, without notice, the SUV in front of us slammed on the breaks. For no reason, since there wasn't any on coming traffic she was trying to avoid. Needless to say, we hit her. Fortunately the driver and her car are fine. She has a bit of a dent. Whereas Peter's Explorer is a MESS. None of us were injured, but then again given how slow we were moving, I would be surprised if anyone was hurt. Nonetheless, even at such slow speeds, Peter and I are devastated to see the extent of damage to our car. The whole front end has caved in, we lost transmission fluid, and we can't start the car. So literally where the accident occurred we were partially blocking a ramp. Peter and I immediately mobilized into action to handle this situation. Peter dealt with the other driver, exchanged insurance, and then called our insurer. While I was on the phone with AAA arranging for the car to be towed to a Ford dealership. Keep in mind that it is as hot as blazes here!!! Like 90+ degrees with humidity. AAA couldn't have been nicer. They also had the police come to the scene to help protect us from getting hit by other cars and to direct the flow of traffic. In addition, the tow truck showed up within 30 minutes as promised.

However, the bad news is that we will have to leave our car in Boston for a month to get it repaired and rent a car to return home on Sunday. I am not sure how I am feeling about any of this, other than somehow this snapped me into a depressed mood. This evening Peter is downstairs with his parents and his brother's family and I am sitting upstairs. Some times certain things trigger me off and when they do, being around normalcy doesn't help me at all. It is hard for Peter and I to spend time with children period, even on a good day, and right now it doesn't feel like a good day. I realize I have experienced Mattie getting cancer and dying, and I should be able to put a car accident where no one got hurt into perspective. But here I am sitting, not being able to have a mature perspective and instead just feeling like this is yet another sign to Peter and I about our life's happiness.

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