A while ago...almost two years I think...I stumbled upon a gorgeous picture of this pregnant mother, belly almost bursting out of her top, glowing with love for what she was growing inside of her. That picture was part of a maternity series, and that maternity series was photographed by her husband, Ryan. I began visiting Ryan's site to check out the maternity series. Then I subscribed to his RSS feed so I could read the posts he was writing and see the pictures he was taking between the maternity photos.
It was amazing reading about the pregnancy [my very favorite post, that I emailed to as many girlfriends as I possibly could, is this one.]. And the posts between the pregnancy posts were amazing. They were about life. They were about what it was like for Ryan and his wife Cole to be newly married. They were about what it was like for Ryan to be an expectant father, and they were about what it was like learning to be stepdad to Cole's son, who he refers to a LB [the Littlest Buddy because Ryan calls all his friends buddy].
Mid-pregnancy LB was diagnosed with SMS [Smith Magenis Syndrome—read more about it here.]. And from there, as I've read Ryan's blog, I—and all his other readers—have watched Ryan and Cole grapple with what it means to be parents of a kid with SMS, what it means for LB to have SMS, all the while doing it with the fierce love of parents who want the very best for their son.
After reading his blog, one thing Ryan most certainly is is driven. So when he decided he wanted to do something to help not just LB, but other people with SMS, it didn't take long for it to become this HUGE idea. What did Ryan do? Oh, you know, he got a bunch of his musician friends together and they made an album. WHICH DEBUTED AT NUMBER ONE ON ITUNES. Ryan's going to release an album every year on LB's birthday, and the proceeds of the album go to SMS research. Because right not there's not much information and there's not a whole lot of funding.
So. What does this mean? It means that if you're a parent and you have good taste in music and are sick of listening to Kidz Bop and Yo Gabba Gabba, there's a BETTER, AWESOMER album out there with music for your kids that won't make your ears bleed. You can listen to the album below, AND you can buy it on iTunes. Also, I love the birthday song. I kind of want to find a way to incorporate it into my next birthday.
PS.I'm late to the game here, friends. All the cool people blogged about it on Monday. I suffered from Notenoughpeoplereadmyblog-itis, but a run this morning, complimented by ruminating on how much work Ryan and his friends and family have put into this project, cured me real quick. Even if I'm the only one who buys it [and then gives it too all of my friends with kids for their respective children's birthdays], I still want you to know about it. K. That's it.