Tole Friends' Memory Boxes

There is a wonderful all-volunteer organization that provides memory boxes free of charge for hospitals and infant bereavement programs. Each box is painted or decorated by volunteers who purchase the boxes and other supplies with their own funds, and then mail them to the appropriate hospital without any expectation of compensation.

To date, the volunteers of Tole Friends' Memory Boxes have donated more than 113,000 memory boxes for angel families across the United States. The purpose of the program is to affirm the life of the child for the family who has suffered the loss of a newborn. Crafters and artists create each box with great love and a sincere wish to reach out in support and understanding. They know each infant is special and loved very much, regardless of how long the child lived.

The gals at Tole Friends provide free patterns, tutorials for decoupaged boxes and decorated boxes, tutorials on making boxes from scratch, links to suppliers, and poem suggestions appropriate for memory boxes.

Check out their gallery of painted memory boxes and also the decorated boxes.  The individuality and love that is put into each box is a special gift for the families that receive these boxes during a very difficult time in their lives.

To find out more about the important work done at Tole Friends' Memory Boxes or to participate in their project, visit their website.  Don't forget to "like" them on Facebook!

For Love of Jared

This could also be titled, "2nd Collection of Diapers In Canada, This Time Alberta!"

My sweet friend Tracey has made a donation of 200 diapers for the angel families at Lois Hole Women's Hospital in Edmonton, Alberta.  She has navigated the local bureaucracy and represented the vision of Teeny Tears well as our Canadian ambassador.

These special gifts have been made in memory of Tracey's precious nephew Jared Lee Softley.  They were handcrafted by Jared's aunt, grandmother, cousins, and the Young Women of the  Sturgeon Ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Thank you so much for your contribution to the angel families of Edmonton!

For Love of Blake and Shane Part #4 and #5

This could also be titled: "Holly Takes On The Northeast".

 Blake and Shane's mama just sent 64 diapers to Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, New Jersey and Massena Memorial Hospital in Massena, New York.  They have all been donated in memory of Blake and Shane Mendolsohn.

I have told Holly that I suspect she has a stash of diapers tucked under her pillow, ready to fly out the door at a moment's notice.  I'd like to point out that she hasn't exactly contradicted the mental image that I have described.

Mollianna's Mission Part #2

My next door neighbors are serious diaper addicts.  They have "the sickness".  Bad.

They are not at all into glory seeking or public adoration, but I just. can't. help. myself.  Their devotion to angel babies everywhere is such a blessing.  In the future, I will try to be less effusive in my accolades, but just this once they must receive their due.

Meet Steve: cutter, trimmer, flipper!  He's a diaper addict every bit as hard core as his awesome wife.  Even the flannel pajamas at Costco catch his eye...

And our amazing J.R. with the pups!  (You better believe I am going to catch some serious grief for swiping this off her Facebook page!  But I love her and I think she's so cute.)
Diapers, diapers everywhere....
Every few weeks, J.R. shows up on my doorstep with a box of diapers like this.
They never care where they go; they always know that their teeny diapers will find their way to an angel family somewhere in the world that needs them.  And they do.

We were able to send 80 of their beautiful diapers to Mollianna's Mission in memory of Mollianna Mae Matthews.  Mollianna's Mission was established to benefit families suffering from pregnancy and infant loss by providing assistance with financial expenses for an honorable headstone, and to provide free remembrance cards and grief support packages.
THANK YOU!!  And I will behave myself in the future.  I pinky promise  :)

For Love of Blake and Shane Part #3

Blake and Shane's family donated 100 diapers for the angel families at St. Joseph's hospital in Paterson, New Jersey.  THANK YOU.

The Ribbon Retreat -- Mollianna's Mission


We were able to transform a generous donation of flannel from The Ribbon Retreat into 122 diapers for Mollianna's Mission!
Mollianna's Mission was created in memory of Mollianna Mae Matthews to benefit families suffering from pregnancy and infant loss by providing assistance with financial expenses for an honorable headstone, and to provide free remembrance cards and parental grief support care packages.
We were able to make some beautiful "large" boy diapers.
 Including these super cuties from the Puppy Park collection.
Some darling coordinating itty bitty boy diapers as well:
And girlie diapers too.  Oh, sweet girlie diapers for angel princesses.  These are some of our large diapers that fit angels between approximately 24 and 32 weeks.
Sweet pinks from the "Wanna Be a Cowboy 2" collection.
They look so pretty in the teeny tiny diapers as well.  These diapers fit angel babies between about 18 and 23 weeks.
Precious little love tokens.
For love of Mollianna Mae, from the SLC Diaper Divas.
To find out more about Mollianna's Mission, visit their website and like them on Facebook!

THANK YOU, Ribbon Retreat!!!!

Fat Quarter Shop -- Matthew's Mission

 
Thanks to the Fat Quarter Shop, we were able to make a beautiful donation of 32 diapers for Matthew's Mission, who provides care packages for the angel families at Memorial Hospital in South Bend, Indiana.

The Fat Quarter Shop carries a wide variety of fabrics, quilt kits, free quilt patterns, pattern books, notions, and more! 

I just love these special little diapers made out of their donation of flannels from the Madeline Collection.
These pretty diapers were made with love in memory of Matthew Pierce Boothe by the SLC Diaper Divas.
THANK YOU, Fat Quarter Shop!  You can "like" The Fat Quarter Shop on Facebook!
 
Sending our love to Matthew's Mission!

Angelitos

I have been so humbled to receive this special story from a mother of six precious angel children.  This mother has been lovingly sewing gowns, blankets, and diapers BY HAND, without a sewing machine, for the angel families in her community.  Not all angels are in Heaven.  One lives in Donna, Texas.

"Hi, my name is Laura M.Villanueva, mother of six beautiful angels. I am sorry that I am just barely communicating with you. I have thought and wondered if I should share my beautiful and yet, sad story with you. I am 30 years old and have suffered the hardest pain a woman can go through - that of losing a child and I have lost six. Let me tell you a little bit about me.

My first pregnancy was three years ago.  God gave me the blessing to carry in my womb twins, a girl and a boy. My pregnancy was a bit tricky but my husband and I had a lot of faith and knew that everything would be fine. At 25 weeks, we went in for a checkup and my doctor told us that my little ones hearbeats could not be heard. Those were the most painful words I ever heard.  My life fell apart, I am a Mexican immigrant, and my belief is that if the baby is stillborn, he/she never existed.  The only family I have is my sister and my husband. They have been my support  in this painful journey.  I of course I can not talk to my mom about the loss of my children.

Seven months later, I became pregnant again only this time with triplets. I did not understand what was happening! For some reason thought it was a gift of life from God.  My children were born at 18 weeks. I was in a car accident; when I awoke 3 three days I got the news, I do not understand why again it happened.  I go through the mourning, the pain and the unanswered questions, as to why I'm alive, I don’t know.  It is difficult to want to live but also be dead inside. With help from my family and via psychological help I moved forward and in May this year I became pregnant again; at eight weeks I had a miscarriage, I am again in mourning and am a mother with empty arms! It is so hard to explain to people that I don’t have children here next to me but that I carry them in my heart.

What you do is wonderful, I do not sew but the diapers, dresses, blankets to put in memory boxes donated I sew by hand. You cannot imagine how much the little that I do has helped me.  I only work with two hospitals and a funeral home.  Tomorrow, I am having a garage sale to raise money to buy the things I need for the boxes. I have a just one job now but hopefully soon I will have one more, because the money from my second job will go towards supplies to make memoirs.  I have received no donations but you know, I do not care!  The little I do, I do with much love to give some comfort those parents who have gone through what I have gone through.  I sent you photos of the third installment I gave one of the hospitals and hopefully you like them. What I do is not a lot. I have two appointments in two new hospitals near where I live. I have already made ​​20 diapers should they say they accept my little boxes.

Gracias for listening and may God and the Virgin bless you for all the beautiful things you do."

****

"Hola,soy LauraM.Villanueva mama d seis hermosos angelitos,te pido una disculpas porque apenas me estoy comunicando con tigo,he pensando mucho si debo de platicarte mi hermosa pero ala vez triste historia,yo tengo 30 años y e pasado por el dolor mas doloroso que una mujer puede pasar el perder a un hijo pero yo he perdido seis,deja y te cuento un poco d mi.Mi primer embarazo fue hace tres años dios me dio la bendición de llevar en mi vientre a twins,una niña y un niño,mi embarazo fue un poco delicado pero mi esposo y yo teníamos muchas fe y sabiamos que todo saldría bien,alos 25 semanas en un chequeo mi doctora nos dijo que el corazoncito de mis chiquitos no se escuchaba,fueron las palabras mas dolorosas que escuhe mi vida se vino abajo,yo soy mexicana imigrante,y mis creencias son que si el bebe nace muerto es como si no hubiera existido,aquí la unica familia que tengo es a mi hermana y mi esposo ellos han sido mi apoyo en este doloroso camino,yo porsupuesto no puedo hablar con mi mama hacerca de mis hijos.Alos siete meses bolvi a quedar embarazada solo que esta vez eran triplets no entendía lo que estaba pasando por alguna razón pense que era un regalo de la vida y de dios,alas 18semanas mis hijos nacieron  muertos por concecuencia de un axidente en mi carro,cuando desperte alas tres dias me dieron la noticia,no entiendo porque otra vez ami,nuevamente pasas por el luto,el dolor y las preguntas sin respuesta,como es que estoy viva,no lose,que difícil es querer vivir pero al mismo tiempo estar muerta por dentro.Con mucho apoyo y ayuda sicológica te puedo desir que sali adelante,en mayo de este año quede nuevamente embarazada,alas 8 semanas tuve un aborto natural,estoy nuevamente en luto y en el camino de ser una mama con los brazos vacíos es tan difícil aprender a vivir sin ellos,no hay dia de mi vida que no piense en cada uno de ellos,es tan difícil de explicarle alas personas que no tengo hijos aqui alado de mi sino que yo los llevo en mi corazón.Lo que tu haces es maravilloso,yo nose cocer a maquina pero los pañales,vestidos,las cobijitas que pongo en las cajitas de memoria que dono las coso a mano,no te imaginas lo que me ha ayudado lo poco que ago,solo son dos hospitales y una funeraria,mañana boy a poner una venta de garage para recaudar dinero y poder comprar las cosas que necesito para las cajitas,ahora solo tengo un trabajo pero espero pronto conseguir uno mas,ya que lo que yo he hecho es que el dinero de mi segundo trabajo lo ocupo para comprar todas las cosas, nadien me da donaciónes pero sabes no me importa lo poco que hago lo hago con mucho amor y cariño para darle un poco de consuelo aquellos papas que han pasado lo mismo que yo.Te envie fotos de la tercera entrega que di en uno de los hospitales ojala y te gusten es muy poco lo que hago,tengo dos citas en dos nuevos de los hospitales serca de,donde vivo,ya tengo 20 pañales hechos por si me dicen que si aceptan mis cajitas.Gracias por escucharme.Que dios y la virgen te bendigan por todo lo hermoso que haces."




Thank you, Veronica Santos, for your translation assistance!

For Love of Grant

Jonathan and Kristy are the loving parents of Grant Oliver Bybee, who was born still at 21 weeks on March 23, 2012 due to congenital abnormalities.  This sweet family provides a number of important bereavement items to local hospitals in his memory.  They make itty bitty blankets, mini hats, tiny little sleepers, and teeny diapers for the angel families in their community.

The Bybee family recently made a donation of 60 diapers, 60 hats, 60 blankets, about about 5 sleeper/hat combination sets.  These precious treasures were donated in memory of Grant Oliver Bybee to Providence Hospital in Waco, Texas.  They also made a donation of 40 diapers to Threads of Love in Houston, Texas.

"I have thoroughly enjoyed sewing these over the last few months. It has been so therapeutic to sew things knowing that they will bless another family during their darkest moments. I know how much something so small can mean to these families."  Kristy
Do you see these tiny little hats?  I mean, do you SEE all the preciousness and possibility in these hats??  Kristy has provided a FULL TUTORIAL for them!
In memory of Grant.
Thank you, Bybee family, for all that you do to support the angel families of Texas.

Threads of Love, Sallye Chapter -- Cook Children's Hospital

Most of our requests come from hospitals that have Labor and Delivery units.  However, many Children's specialty hospitals are starting to take notice of our precious little bereavement diapers for families that experience the passing of a micropreemie child in their critical care units.

While we always include at least a few of our tiniest diapers in every delivery for any angel babies that may fit into them, Children's hospitals primarily need our "large" diapers, those that fit angels from approximately 23 weeks to about 30/32 weeks.

Siouxsie and her helpers made a generous gift of 52 diapers through the Sallye Chapter of Threads of Love for the angel families at Cook Children's Hospital in Forth Worth, TX.  
Thank you, Siouxsie & co!!

For Love of Kathryn

Kathryn Bigwarfe briefly entered this world with her identical twin sister after a complicated battle with Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome.  Having suffered the recipient effects of this dangerous disease, Kathryn passed away in her parents' arms after two days in NICU.  You can read about the TTTS journey of Kathryn and "Tiny" by clicking HERE.  You can read the loving and poignant account of Kathryn's passing by clicking here.

Kathryn's family donated 22 diapers in her memory to Greenville Memorial Hospital in Greenville, South Carolina.  See more pictures here!

"This was quite the project! But it brought so much healing to me, and it gives me great comfort to know that we will potentially help another family who suffers the way we did... by providing this simple token of our love."


You can follow Kathryn and Tiny's family as they bravely, honestly, and optimistically navigate their new life!

For Love of Cassidy

We have a super volunteer that has adopted all of the teeny tiny hospitals in rural Utah!

Carrie made her very first delivery to Moab, Utah:  4 little diapers for an anticipated 2 angel babies that will need them during the coming year.  These diapers have been made in memory of Carrie's daughter, Cassidy Jane Austin.  Cassidy passed away in July of 2012, just this past summer, at 23 weeks.  She has left behind a family that is ensuring that a legacy of individual worth will live on through her memory.

Some may ask, "why bother for only 2 babies?!"  We believe that every single angel baby is deserving of dignity, modesty, and all expressions of love and individuality that can be offered!  Because a "person's a person, no matter how small."
Thank you, Carrie, for your vision and for your willingness to proactively serve the angel families in our rural Utah communities!

For Love of Blake and Shane Part #2

We have an angel family that is determined to give a diaper set to every angel family in New Jersey that has need of one! In memory Blake and Shane Mendelsohn, their family has donated 24 diapers to St. Clare's hospital in Denville, New Jersey.

Delivering these precious diapers (their second delivery) was the way that Blake and Shane's mommy chose to celebrate own birthday. Healing for her own heart through love to fellow angel families that will one day walk the path she has already taken. Happy birthday, Holly.  Bless you and your sweet family.

Flannel Queen for Kaitlin's Angels

Thanks to the generosity of The Flannel Queen, we were able to make another donation of diapers!
This beautiful collection of 88 Flannel Queen diapers has been donated to Kaitlin's Angels, a wonderful organization in upstate New York that donates memory boxes for angel families to local hospitals.
We made gorgeous large diapers:
 Including this darling set made out of Carnival Bloom flannel.
And we made sweet little teeny tiny diapers:
 These diapers have been donated in memory of Kaitlin Terra Herne.
We also donated 26 more itty bitties that were sewn together by Sveta, one of our SLC Diaper Divas:
To find out more about the special work that Kaitlin's Angels does for the angel families of New York, please find them HERE.

Don't forget to "Like" them on Facebook!

You can read more about Kaitlin's Story and watch her memorial video HERE.

THANK YOU, Flannel Queen!