Monday, March 22, 2010

The Story of US

With the anticipation of my new blog design being almost ready to launch, I want to write out the story of US. My original plans were to just put in the title bar and let you all find it with a old post date. But I wanted to share this here first. I know I have gained some new friends in blog land and wanted to formally introduce US.


weddingmeMeet Me, Ashley. I am a 20 something wife, mother and oldest of 4 kids. I grew  up in the suburbs of Chicago and relocated to Florida after high school with my family. Best thing I ever did!

I have been told I am good at making people laugh, although I admit it’s not on purpose, it is usually because of my many imperfections or stupidity. I am passionate about life, enjoying every second and keeping the memory of our son Nolan alive.

I am in love with ANYTHING nautical, I adore anchors and even have an anchor tattoo for Nolan and you will probably find me  on the show Hoarders in 20 years trying to quit my addiction to buying anchors.


n290400051_310677_9317Meet Chris, my awesome 6’7” husband. He is my husband and father of our son. He is my best friend and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Chris is the laid back personality and the guy that everyone loves to have as a friend. He just has that type of personality. I struck gold when I married Chris, I am one of those lucky girls.

A simple story of US.

We met at the young age of 19 at our part time job of Best Buy. We both weren’t looking, but kind  of fell into a relationship fairly easy. Holy cow, Chris still has hair here!



We shared a love for FSU.


We cruised.


We partied.


We got a dog.

We changed jobs, together (yes, we’re dorks)

We went through college together, my parents moved to Ohio and left me here in Florida. But that was okay because I had Chris.


He changed his major one million times, while I had just been accepted into respiratory therapy program.

He ended up going to the police academy and in the year of 2006, we both got grown-up jobs.

graduation resize(2) 

In 2007, we took a cruise for our first vacation without family where he got down on one knee in St John’s on Honeymoon Beach and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him.


thering enegeemebt2

In December 2008, we invited 40 friends and family to sail with us aboard the Ruby Princess where we exchanged vows in front of the captain, out side on the aft deck while at sea. We partied our tails off and considered our wedding a week long reception. You can watch our wedding videos here, here & here.


Our_Wedding269 Our_Wedding572 n290400051_310705_7592

Then that New Years Eve, we found out we brought home a little souvenir from our wedding cruise. We were expecting our first child, a dream the both of us have talked about for awhile. Our unborn child was officially nicknamed

“Our Ruby Baby”


This is where this blog began, an innocent blog started to document the next 9 months of our life and share news with the family.

In May, the blog turned into a prayer and information blog sharing the fight we started of our unborn son and his fight with IUGR.

In June 2009, after 5 weeks of a grueling battle to fight for our son we welcomed Nolan Michael into this world at 26 weeks and 1 day due to Pre-eclampsia and HELLP syndrome.


We became parents and found out what being a NICU parent entitles.


Our son's life was cut short after 3 perfect days in the NICU. He was our miracle, our baby, our life. Chris and I became parents to a perfect 13 ounce boy who defied all odds and showed those specialists that he WOULD survive.

Baby Nolan 031

We buried our son, something no parent should ever have to endure.

baby 065

We grieved.


The following months my blog turned into my therapy, a public and very raw insight of my feelings and battle with grief. A journey trying to find my new normal.

We’re hoping that 2010 brings up some good news. Chris and I have become stronger, value each other more than ever before and truly understand the value in life, miracles and hope.

Who knows where the next few years and decades will take us, but I have plans on sharing with all you because in my darkest moments you were there picking us up with your comments, texts, emails, phone calls and beyond. Because of you guys you have helped me pass Nolan’s story on and keep his spirit alive. My personal goal in life is to never let Nolan be forgotten. I want to live in his spirit, pass on the hope I had when we had him and share with others.

Here is to a continued version of  the story of A Ruby Family.


party don't stop said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Lauren said...

Thanks for sharing your story!!! I loved reading it and it made me tear up. You still look the same as you did when you were 19! You guys make the cutest couple. I love your passion for life.

Its so wonderful that you and Chris have been able to grow stronger together despite all you've been through. That says a lot about your relationship. GOOD things will come and I hope just as much as you do that it's in 2010!

On a side note - Any idea what the 'Party Don't Stop' comment said above me?? LOL


mrs.messi said...

You guys are an amazing couple! Love the pics!

Jen said...

I've been reading your blog for a long time now, and I'd always wondered how you and Chris met and fell in love (I missed the Q&A post a little while back). Awesome story. Thanks for sharing!

The Ramirez Family said...

Thank you for allowing me to share in your life and story! You have helped so many people through this.

Jaime said...

What a beautiful family you have, Ashley. Thank you for inviting us in to share in your travels.

Cheers to all that life will continue to bring to you, Chris, Nola and Nolan.


Anonymous said...

Ashley, such a beautiful story. My boyfriend and i have been together since we were 16, so 3 years now, and he is thinking about going into the academy. If you have any advice that'd be great. I've been following your blog for awhile- Nolan is such a beautiful little boy.

Mrs. D said...

Thank you so much for sharing this adorable story! You guys make such a sweet & cute couple!!!

Oh & I'm not a creepster or anything, but I found this online randomly & thought of you & you're love for all things anchors :) Sorry it's such a looooonnnngg link :/,+product.marketingPriority,-product.startDate&navCount=210&navAction=poppushpushpush&color=&pushId=W_ACC_NECKLACE&popId=W_ACC_JEWELRY&prepushId=WOMENS_ACCESSORIES&selectedProductSize=

Lisette said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story from the begining. You both make such a beautiful couple. I love it when you can just see the love you have for eachother through a simple picture. I am glad to hear that you both have grown stronger because of Nolan. So many young couple's have a hard time communicating after such a loss. I hope that you both continue to love and grown stronger. You are doing an amazing job at keeping Nolan's spirit alive. You are an amazing mommy!
Can't wait to see your new blog.

Alison said...

Beautiful Ashley!! :) You guys are so cute!! I can't wait to see what the new blog looks like when it's done!

Beckie @ Wishuponastardesign said...

You are such a beautiful person and I hope 2010 is your lucky year, you certainly deserve it!!

maggs said...

thank you for sharing your amazing story. working in obstetrics, it helps me to understand the maternal side of what i do, and every day i think of your story. it helps me understand what others are going though. you are an amazing woman! stay strong! you are helping more people than you know :)

Maggie said...

What a wonderful story! I liked reading it! You two make a cute couple and you are doing an amazing job of remembering sweet little Nolan! I'm hoping 2010 brings a lot of promise and hope for the both of you!

Jayme said...

I loved this! Thank you so much for sharing the whole story with all the pictures, it was wonderful to read :)

jamie said...

Great post! You two are such a cute couple - look like the types of people the hubby and I would love hanging out with! Plus you are Red Sox fans so that is a plus :)

Sarah said...

Wow. Beautiful post. Beautiful baby and beautiful wedding gown girl! :) Im so so sorry for your loss. And I'm hoping 2010 brings you happiness and peace. :)

joelle g said...

your strength is amazing & you are an amazing mother. i have been reading your blog for the past few weeks and everytime it makes me realize how blessed i am. thank you.

p.s. i saw an anchor bracelet the other day and it reminded me of you and your blog.

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful journey the two of you have taken together. Nolan will always be a part of that. *hugs*

Mrs.F said...

Your story is beautiful. I pray for yall all the time. Just know people are thinking about you that you don't really "know."

kkwg said...

I love what you did with your photos & video of Nolan. I cried as I watched, but continued on to the end. I lost my little ones, twins, around the same time. Wishing you the best...

lindsey said...

I am so very happy that I stumbled upon your blog. Your story is beautiful, heartbreaking, and inspiring. I am looking forward to getting to know you through the wonderful world of blogging. :o)

kkasun said...

I am glad I found your blog (through "Our New Normal". I look forward to reading more about your family!

Raquel said...

Hi...just found your blog. I am also a Florida and also lost my son at 28 weeks due to pre-eclampsia HELLP.

Love your site and your story. Looking forward to reading more.

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