Sunday, July 26, 2009

Baxter Family 07/26/09

Hello all. This Alexander. I plan on continuing this blog in my mother's absence. I may not make weekly updates, but I'll do my best to keep everyone updated with what is going in our family.

~The Baxters are currently in Utah, on vacation. We will be here until August 5th, 2009, and we are enjoying our stay and visiting with family. Yesterday (07/25) we went swimming in the Great Salt Lake, and Thursday (07/23) we attended the Occur Mountain Temple open house.

~Brother Baxter's 9th anniversary of being sealed to Sister Baxter in the Mt. Timpanogas Temple just passed on Thursday (07/23).

~Rosie only wears diapers at night now; she has decided that she is now a big girl, and is opting to wear underwear during the day. So far, not a single accident.

~Alexander and Daniel are working hard to finish school in time. We have until the end of August. Next (school) year, Daniel will be in seventh (7th) grade, and Alexander will be in tenth (10th) grade.

~Alexander is looking forward to his birthday on August 12th. He will be fifteen (15) years old.

~Alexander recently attended the Pokemon National Championships 09, and placed in the Top 8 out of more than 250 players in his age division (born in 94-97)! He is very excited, and in addition to a $750 scholership, has even won an invitation to the Pokemon World Championships 09. It has been his dream for more than five years to play at the World Championships; his dream will finally come true.

I realize that this blog may now have a lot more information about me, Alexander, than it did before just because I am maintaining this blog. However, I'm doing my best to include the rest of the family in this blog. Nobody is perfect. Also, my mom was a grammar and spelling fanatic, and took English as her major in college. Keep in mind that the writing capabilities of a Sophomore pale in contrast to my mom's elegance with words. So if you notice any incorrect grammar or spelling (which, in comparison to my mom's posts, you probably will), please, do forgive me.

Until next time,

Friday, July 17, 2009

Funeral Arrangements

The funeral arrangements have been made:

Sunday, 19 July at 7:00
Pierce Funeral Home, 9609 Center St., Manassas, VA

Monday, 20 July at 2:00 (viewing at 1:00)
Bristow Ward meetinghouse, 5750 Websters Way, Manassas, VA

Graveside Service
Wednesday, 22 July at 11:00 at the Salt Lake Cemetery
I don't know the exact location of the grave, but it is just below 11th Avenue, on the East side of the military graves.

I realize that many of you will be unable to attend these services, but I am grateful for your thoughts and prayers and for your wonderful comments about Holly. Thank you for sharing your precious memories.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me directly at


Thursday, July 16, 2009

Holly Baxter 21 December 1964 - 15 July 2009

Holly passed away this evening at 7:30 at home. I've known this was coming for quite some time, but there really is no way to prepare for it. I've lost the love of my life, and our children have lost their wonderful mother. I draw strength and comfort from the knowledge that we have been sealed in the Temple for all eternity. I also find comfort in knowing that she is free from her pain, and that she is in a glorious place free from sorrow. We will have to rely heavily on our faith to be able to get through the rest of our lives without her.

We haven't finalized the funeral plans at this point, but we're anticipating that the funeral will be on Monday, 20 July. We will then fly her out to Salt Lake City for burial. We will conduct a graveside service there. I will update this blog with details when we have them.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Holly's Condition

Holly's condition continues to worsen. She sleeps most of the time, and when she is awake she is not very responsive. She isn't able to communicate much, and when she speaks it usually doesn't make much sense. It looks like her time is very short.

Every time I experience something, or think of an idea, or see something interesting, my first thought is, "I can't wait to share this with Holly!" Then I remember that I can't. It is so painful to see the love of my life and my best friend dwindling away day after day. It's hard to accept that I can't share my life with her any more. I know that soon she will be free of her pain and that she will rejoice in the next step of her eternal progression, and that brings me great comfort, but it still doesn't take away the pain and emptiness of knowing that I will not see her again for a very long time.

They say that misery loves company, so maybe it's a good thing that there are so many people out there who are sharing this loss. I hear almost every day of someone who has been touched by Holly's influence for good. She has had such an impact on so many people. I only wish they all could have known her as well as I do.

I found this picture from some old pictures we took while we were living in Vienna. Holly was the president of the Primary, which is something like the children's Sunday school program. She was in charge of about 30 kids from ages 3 to 12. She took after that job with full gusto. I spent countless Saturday evenings cutting out or laminating pictures with her until 2:00 a.m. so she could give the children a quality learning experience. She had a dramatic impact on all of these children, and on many of their parents as well. This time period was the happiest I've seen Holly, which is why I love this picture. It reminds me of what Holly is really about: Christlike service to others.

Saturday, July 11, 2009


This is Robert, writing for Holly again. I'm sad to say that Holly's health has seriously declined in the last several weeks. Her liver has not been functioning well, and has been producing a lot of "sludge" that fills her abdomen. Her lungs have also been filling with fluid. She has a difficult time breathing and she can only get out of bed for very short periods, if at all. She is now under hospice care, since her doctors have told us that there is nothing more they can do for her. They tell us that she has only a couple weeks left, at best.

This is not what we wanted to have happen, but we have known for some time that this was coming. We have never given up praying for a miracle, but we know that God's ways are not always our ways. We have been preparing ourselves (as best as we can) and we have slowly come to terms with it. We don't know all of our Father in Heaven's plan for us, but we know that his will is always best in the end, and he must have something very important for Holly to do on the other side if he is willing to take her away from us so soon. I feel I am getting just a tiny taste of what our Savior felt when he asked, "... O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt."

Throughout all this, we have been blessed by so many good friends and family. My son Scott got married on 19 June, so we were able to have a lot of family come to visit us. It was so wonderful to get to go with Scott and his new bride, Brooke, into the Washington DC temple to see them be sealed for time and all eternity. What a blessing to see two pure, humble people starting their new life together.

Holly's cousin, Jamie, decided to come and stay with us for as long as needed to help Holly and the rest of us. I don't know what I would have done without her. She has truly been a gift from God (even when I argue with her). She has experience with home health care, so she has been able to help Holly in ways I would never be able to. Holly's dad and stepmother have also come to help, as well as Holly's nana. Of course, Holly's mother has been here all along to help her out. Whenever Holly needs help or is afraid, the first person she wants to talk to is her mother. The members of our church have been amazing too. They have been bringing meals and taking Rosie on outings. They will do literally anything we need, and they have proved that over and over. I hope that I can return the favor in some small way in the future.

Holly is resting comfortably right now. I am taking off from work for as long as I need to so that I can be with her and help her in any way I can. Thank you all for your prayers.


This is Robert, writing for Holly. She has been wanting to update the blog for quite some time, but she hasn't been feeling well enough to stay at the computer for any length of time.

The trip to Disneyworld was fantastic! It was truly a fantasy trip. We are so grateful for all the people who made real sacrifices to make it possible. The youth at our church put together a car wash to raise money. Our dear friend, Donna, did a 5K run with her family to raise money as well. We also had friends from church making donations to make this come true. Of course, the Dream Foundation put the whole thing together. We got to stay at the Nickelodion Hotel, and then at a wonderful Marriott property. We got three days at the Disney parks, a day at Sea World, and two days at Universal Studios. The donations made it so we could fully enjoy all these attractions without having to sweat about money (and it does burn up fast!)

Probably the highlight of the trip was when we got to get in the water with the baluga whales. Holly has always wanted to do that, and this was a wish come true for her.

Holly and Jym Antony took us under their wings and set up some amazing stuff for us. We got to get up close and personal with the animals at the Disney Animal Kingdom restaurant. We ate our delicious dinner right by the window and watched zebras and giraffes wander by. It really reminded us of Kenya, where we met and got married 8 years ago. They also set up a personal meeting with all the princes and princesses at the Disney castle. Rosie went to the Bippity Boppity Boutique and got all dressed up as Tinkerbell, then she got to go and meet all the Disney royalty. I think she was a bit overwhelmed.

This trip was so important to us because we really wanted to make sure that the kids have good, positive memories to carry with them in the coming years, especially Rosie. The last couple of years have been focused so much on going back and forth to hospitals that we really haven't been able to do much else. The boys have had to carry a huge load around the house, doing a long list of chores every day in addition to their school work. Rosie has had very few chances to do anything fun or memorable with Mommy. This trip really did the trick. We did it just in the nick of time, too, because if we had waited only a couple weeks longer, Holly probably wouldn't have been able to travel.

We were especially thrilled that Max was able to go with us. Everything went very well with him. We can see that he has made tremendous improvement since we moved him to the new group home (Turning Point for Boys). The director, Mr. Butler, really knows his stuff, and he has had fantastic results with boys like Max. We see a light in Max's eyes now that we haven't seen in a very long time.

Our thanks to everyone who made it possible for us to live a dream for a few days that will carry us long into the future.