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tyler scan 3I remember being very worried before Tyler was born, how was I possibly going to love this new baby as much as I loved my first. Seems silly now, looking back, but at the time I was genuinely concerned. The second that I saw him though, I fell in love hard and it became instantly apparent how a mom’s heart grows to love each and every one of her kids as if he or she was the only one. Today, 22 years later, it’s hard to imagine what my life was life before he was a part of it.

tyler scan 1When one says that time flies, the young scoff. As you get older though you realize that it really does fly by in the blink of an eye. In my mind, I see the adorable kid with the infectious smile in these pictures. Before me, stands a young man that I am proud to call my son. He is intelligent, funny, kind, thoughtful, quiet and sincere. In many wonderful ways he reminds me of his dad, particularly when they both gang up to pick on my lack of musical recall. (The Red Hot Chili Peppers are seared into my brain thanks to him). He is my forever date to go to a Tracy Chapman concert with (if and when she ever tours again) and to see the Northern lights. The partner who gets to spend her life with him will be one lucky girl because he gives his heart fully and completely. He will be a wonderful champion for our environment as he embarks on his career upon graduation.

tyler scan 2My wish for his 22nd birthday is that he realizes just how special and talented he is goes out into the world. The world is lucky to have him, as am I.

Happy birthday Tyler, love you!

~Mom

PS – Yes, I get to post the toddler pictures, it’s part of the reward for going through the birthing process. ūüôā

 

 

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Today starts the cycle of birthdays here in the Heffernan house. Two of our boys celebrate birthdays 10 days apart. For many years when they were younger, we celebrated their birthdays together with family and friends. I have yet to adjust to the whole college life where birthdays are often spent apart and celebrated together when we can. I do miss hanging the “Happy Birthday” banner and setting up their place at the table with presents for when they woke up.

Twenty years ago this afternoon, we welcomed Tyler to the world. He came bouncing into this world at 5 p.m. and has held my heart ever since. He has the unique spot in the family to be both a big brother and a little brother, something neither of his siblings can claim.

It has been amazing to watch him grow into the young man that he has become and I know that the world is, and will continue to be, a better place with him in it. He has such a  big heart and is probably the most empathetic person that I know. He is the strong silent type, soft spoken, quiet and very observant.  If you are able to have him flash you one of his smiles, you are lucky indeed because his entire soul lights up with that smile.

Tyler:

It is a privilege to be your mom. I wish I could be there to give you a birthday hug but instead I send a heart full of wishes for lots of love, laughter, happiness and success as you embark on a new decade in your life. You will do great things. I am very, very proud of you and love you with all my heart. Happy Birthday!

Love you,

Mom

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Just before Tyler was born, I was wondering how mothers could say that they love all their children equally. Our oldest was our world and I couldn’t imagine loving another little baby as much I loved him and it scared me. How could I do this?. Then along came Tyler. He was very different in a lot of ways from his brother. He was a different build, he had the most beautiful blue eyes that you could lose yourself in and he was nothing like his older brother. My heart melted and expanded many times over just like that and suddenly, within hours of bringing this (not so) little guy into the world, I couldn’t imagine my world without him in it. He has the best smile, he’s thoughtful, caring and wears his heart on his sleeve. He’s grown into a wonderful man that I am very proud to call my son. He is handsome, smart, witty and reminds me a lot of his dad. Although I won’t ever get used to this “not always seeing them on their birthday” thing, there will be plenty of birthday pictures when he comes home in a few weeks for Easter. We did get a chance to spend some pre-birthday one-on-one time in the past few days and it made my heart melt all over again.

So…. until those pictures, here are some other pictures from birthdays past that are just going to have to do.

Happy Birthday Tyler – I love you!

IMG_2590  IMG_1111 My beautiful picture

Happy Birthday Tyler! It is so hard to believe that 18 years ago today, at this time, we were anxiously awaiting our new baby’s arrival. Tyler, who was in no particular hurry to enter the world (he should have been born on St. Patrick’s Day) arrived at 5 p.m. on March 22nd.

Before his arrival, I could not understand how a mother has enough love in her heart to love two little babies, but taking one look at that face and holding him for the first time in my arms, there was no doubt that I would love this guy (I can’t say “little” since he arrived at 10 pounds 12 ounces) with all of my heart and soul.

Time has flown by. It is so hard to believe that 17 years have passed between this picture
My beautiful picture

 

and this picture

IMG_2242He is and always has been very independent, caring and empathetic. 

Tyler has grown into a wonderful young man who makes his mom very proud. 

Happy 18th Birthday Tyler! I love you! 

It is so hard to believe that TJ will be graduating in a few weeks, making prom even more tear jerking. I warned him that this would be the first of many tear filled events for his mother over the coming weeks.

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To make a special day even better, it was a historic event in the Heffernan house. It marks the first and last time that all three boys attended the same prom. Here is Tyler and his date

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And last, but not least, Tim with prom date.

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Almost 17 years ago to the exact hour, as I write this, our second little boy slipped into the world. Bearing no resemblance to his brother, Tyler came into the world weighing a whopping 10 lbs 12 oz. He was such a big baby that newborn diapers didn’t fit and the nursing staff had to get diapers from pediatrics since he exceeded the newborn 10 pound limit. He has grown like crazy and now stands the tallest of all the boys, very close in height to his dad.

 

My beautiful picture

All the boys were baptized right around a month old. So,  believe it or not, this is Tyler who looks considerably older than one month at his christening.

 

 

My beautiful picture

Here is a picture of Tyler and his friend Anna playing with chopsticks at dinner in Burlington last night.  Tyler has grown into an intelligent, handsome and funny young man.

We love you, we’re so proud of you.

Happy Birthday Tyler!

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Last night was confirmation night. Tyler and about sixty or so other candidates were confirmed at St. Peter’s Church in Rutland. TJ was Tyler’s sponsor and it was very nice to see the boys together. I was very proud that TJ stood up for his brother. Last year, TJ was the last candidate confirmed. He and the Bishop had a conversation after he was confirmed, while the entire congregation looked on, making TJ very nervous. This year, Tyler was confident that he was “safe” considering that he was by no means the last one. Evidently, Bishop Matano had other plans though and took the time, after confirming him to ask them both questions. He evidently remembered TJ from last year. It provided us all with some chuckles.

 

A vase full of flowers is always nice. It adds a pick-me-up to the indoors and makes me smile. Especially when the flowers it holds are lilacs and the vase holding them was made by your son.

Tyler took a great deal of time setting up under the tree and working on the train. He also did a wonderful job taking these pictures….so I share…. The Village. We started these buildings the year Tom and I got married (which..ahem will be 19 years in a few weeks). Each year or two we had a new piece. The train didn’t come until the boys arrived since it seemed that every Christmas tree for kids (be they young or young at heart) should have a train under it. Each house has a meaning… we started out with a Christmas Tree Lot (which Tom was doing at the time) and Scrooge and Marley’s building (which is the closest we could come at the time to a lawyer’s office). Since then there is a house which resembles our house here in Vermont.

TJ and Tyler were invited to a sweet sixteen party for three of their friends on Saturday. TJ was escorting one of the birthday girls. The party was “dress to impress” formal.

Here’s a few pictures of the boys all dressed up…… pretty handsome, don’t you think?

So…who was it that TJ was escorting?

They make a cute couple….but no.

Again, another cute couple, but Emily has a few more years before she’s celebrating Sweet Sixteen (and for that my brother is, I am sure, quite grateful).

No, TJ was escorting his friend, Maddie to the party.

Not the greatest of pictures, but hey, they were in a hurry to get inside!

At 5 p.m. on this date, our middle son arrived into this world. An easy delivery after our first son which was startling considering the kid weighed 10 pounds 12 ounces at birth. So hard to believe that a baby that didn’t even fit in newborn diapers arrived into the world so easily – or so it seemed. It was a little scary since he was whisked away quickly as they were concerned about shoulder dystocia and his (gigantic) size which could indicate other medical issues, but all turned out well with him. He looked way different than his older brother.

We’ve been lucky to have known him and have him in our lives 14 years today. I wouldn’t trade him for the world. He’s funny, empathic, a good cook, patient and handsome, if I do say so as his mom.

His cake well, that’s another story. The cake was baked bright and early and eaten in part by the dog before noon. The second cake was in the oven by noon and proceeded to turn into a Haiti cake by 3 p.m. Oh well…… still it tastes good and he seemed to think it was awesome. (No accounting for teenage taste in appearances I guess – I was heartbroken – he thought it was the best cake… ever).

Happy Birthday Tyler!

Photo by Tyler Heffernan

Photo by Tyler Heffernan

Well, all those raspberries we picked on Sunday were turned into jam on Monday. The raspberries were beautiful. We picked 24 pints and used 20 in the 20 jars of jam that we made, leaving 4 to pick on which made Tim just so happy.

Photo by Tyler Heffernan

Photo by Tyler Heffernan

Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 8 cups of freshly washed raspberries.
  • No Sugar or Low Sugar Sure Jell 1 1/2 packages
  • 4 cups of sugar

Process:

  1. Mash 8 cups of raspberries with a potato masher. Mash leaving larger pieces of fruit for a chunky jam. DSCN5013
  2. Put fruit and 1 1/2 packages of Sure Jell (Low Sugar) pectin into a saucepan. Make sure that the pan is significantly larger than you need if you have never done this before because it will froth up quite a bit during the boiling process.
  3. Bring fruit and pectin mixture to a boil. Boil until you can no longer stir down the boil – ie- it is still boiling as you are stirring.
  4. Add the 4 cups of sugar. Stir occasionally until it returns to a boil (again, a boil that cannot be stirred down) and let boil for approximately one minute. A good test is to take a clean spoon that is cool (run it under cold water) and then dip into the mixture. Pull it out and see if the cooling jam will stick to the spoon. If it does then the jam is good and will jell properly when cool. If it slides off the spoon add the other 1/2 package of pectin, bring to a boil again and boil for one minute. Repeat spoon test.
  5. Pour mixture into clean, sterilized jam jars. DSCN5015
  6. Wipe rim of jars and then place gasket and seal. Put all jars into a water bath for 10 minutes plus 5 minutes for altitudes over 1000 feet. Altitudes over 2000 feet add additional 5 minutes for each 1000 foot increment of altitude.
  7. Remove jam from canner. Allow to cool. Check seals. If lids are not secure, repeat water bath to properly seal jars.

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