Every year on Christmas we visit the NICU where we spent our first Christmas with Scarlette as a family of three and deliver gift baskets to each of the families in the unit. We usually try to include some helpful items, like hand sanitizers and gift cards, as well as a children’s book and a letter with then + now pictures of Scarlette and a note of encouragement.
This year we decided to give each family a beautiful keepsake edition of The Velveteen Rabbit, as it was one of the first books I read to Scarlette and I love it, the way it tells of how love sometimes hurts but is ultimately what makes the rabbit Real. The books were almost all donated by those of you who read here and I am so grateful as we could never fill up the 20+ gift baskets without your generosity. Thank you.
This is our third year visiting the NICU to bring treats to our nurses and pass out gifts on Christmas – look how little Scarlette was the first year we went! Of all of our Christmas traditions this is my favorite thing to do each year. We started this tradition because someone did it for us when we spent the holidays in the hospital the month after Scarlette was born and I was so touched that I wanted to carry it on.
I am always anchored by the knowledge that our blessing is not just in having a healthy child but in the opportunities to share hope out of what was such a dark time for us. I don’t usually hear from the families, I never include my website or email because I don’t want to be self-promotional. But this year we have an facebook support group for our NICU families and I wanted to invite the new families to join and so it was the first year that some of the families contacted me on my personal facebook page afterwards and I just want to say thank you again to all of you who have helped us put these gifts together and let you know that they mean so much to the recipients.
Fun fact: The first year y’all knitted HUNDREDS of Christmas hats for the babies in our hospital and we had so many that they are still passing them out to families on our unit! Here is what year one and year two looked like!
Special thank you to ePantry for contributing to our gift baskets this year and a very special thank you to The Fitzgeralds, Julie K., Karalyn B., The Sweezeas, Alisa R., Courtney M., Jennifer M., The Roarks, Teresa S., Kerry H., Tammy C., and those of you who donated books anonymously!