Yes, she's a butterfly in every sense of the word :-)

Along the way in the journey of motherhood (and fatherhood), there are forks in the road where you practice letting go of your child.  It actually starts early on when you leave your baby with Grandma and later with an unrelated babysitter.  Or you entrust your toddler to the nursery at church and then a few years later to the kindergarten teacher.  Before you know it you are watching nervously from the window as your teenager backs out of the driveway to drive alone to school for the first time! Eventually you are helping the high school graduate pack the vehicles full of belongings to a destination you have mixed feeling about – that first apartment across town or the college dorm in another city – knowing all along this moment would come — you just didn’t think it’d be quite so soon.  You also know in your heart that the butterfly wings were created for a reason and to hold the child back would ultimately hinder a healthy flight. 

Fortunate for us (parents), letting go doesn’t happen all at once, but gradually and naturally, unfolding like a flower that blooms. 

This is a song that captures moments of Ashley when she was a little girl growing up in our house. It didn’t surprise us that she, true to her butterfly nature, decided to test her wings early after graduating from high school.  Amazing to take these pictures of her in her 2008 Halloween get-up which was, of course, a butterfly with wings! 


There’s glitter on the counter / stickers on the floor

Everywhere are signs of her / smudges on the door

Laughter down the hallway you can’t ignore

Oh, the life and joy of her! / couldn’t ask for more


Hanging in her closet are dresses, jeans and lace

Everywhere are signs you see that she lives in this place

And everytime she looks at you life slows down a pace

And we’re all so blessed to know her / she’s our Angel Face


B: Like an open window with summer wafting through

Birdsong sweet – a Butterfly – that joy we know as you

If we tried to bottle you up – like a firefly in a jar

Your light would fade, wobble and stop so you wouldn’t fly as far

You wouldn’t fly as far
T: and we are so glad you are our girl / we love you and we always will
You will always be our little girl. . . Ashley JoAnne. . .
. . .Birdsong sweet – a butterfly – the joy we know as you. . .
NancyKellyMusic c 1999 the letter c?
how can you not smile back at this?



Motherhood Initiation

Benjamin at 3 days old

My introduction to Motherhood  began on February 6, 1981 with the birth of our son, Benjamin Eugene Kelly.  I was 23 years old and ready to begin this life called My Own Little Family.  When I wrote the song, A Child Is Born,  in 1988 about becoming a mother, I referred to those feelings of aloneness in it, (yet not quite as negative as that may sound) – which were very raw in me in 1981, especially since it was my first experience of having a baby.  The previous year or so had been leading up to this event – I had conceived and lost an embryo at 8 weeks but subsequently conceived a child afterwards who gestated to full term.  This was the life that was to become our son.  Giving birth to Benjamin was an awesome, miraculous, yet somewhat frightening, event – frightening only because this was brand new territory for me.  Like every new mother before me, I had never been this way before! 

When the time came for Ben’s birth, he ended up positioned in the womb defined as Posterier, so consequently, he didn’t emerge too easily.  In fact, I pushed for about 3 hours before we prepped for a C-section.  We had prepared for natural childbirth (with the fervency of fanatics!) so were adament about bringing our son into the world with no medication, let alone surgery! It was quite a blow to our perfect plan to finally relent to what became inevitable.  But alas, Ben somehow dislodged at the last minute so the surgery become unecessary afterall!  Triumphant and exhausted, and probably delirious, I still remember laying eyes on him for the first time.  It was like a dream to see our son, so exquisitely beautiful and handsome all in one, and I felt like the only mother in the entire world.  His coloring was radiant and his little lungs resonated gustily, notifying the delivery floor and beyond that he had arrived!  His Grandpa Eldon has described Benjamin as never having an ugly day in his life!  We tend to agree with his slightly exagerated assessment. a little biased.  But beyond the outer layer, Ben is a discerning and thoughtful person with gifts of wisdom and kindness.  As a mother, I could go on and on. . . 

When Ben was a one-year old, I was inspired to write a song about his crawling days right before he learned to walk. He was a typically energetic and busy little boy and had recently discovered the pots and pans cupboard.  You can imagine the drumming that went on in the kitchen!  I can’t recall if we thought of it as music to our ears. . .  At any rate, the title has always been the first phrase of the song, Benjamin, Our Boy.

Benjamin, our, boy
Your life is like the morning son arising
And we wonder what you will become
Benjamin, our son
Right now we love to watch you play
Your joy and laughter fill our hearts, our home
And we think about the years to come
Benjamin, our son
Right now, you play away the hours of the day
Curious of mind, you like to try and find things
You peek around the corner and then you go explore
Every cupboard, every door, and everything behind things
Benjamin, our joy
Your life, like the sun, will rise to defy the darkness
And we love you, Precious Little Boy
And we'll love you as you grow


But right now, you play away the hours of the day
Curious of mind, you like to try and find things
You peek around the corner and then you go explore
Every cupboard, every door, and everything behind things
And we love you, Precious Little Boy and we'll love you as you grow
Lei, di, da di, lei, di da di da di di
We just thought you would like to know

NancyKellyMusic C 1982

Ben's Cake! (by Le Vie en Rose in Boise)We've just celebrated Ben's 28th birthday!!

Ben + FamilyStan, Nancy, Ben, Ashley and Billy