Monday, December 28, 2009

Huge Success!

So yesterday's fundraising event was a widely huge success! I can't believe all the people that came to our event, and all of the support that was given to us and our quest to help send support to families who are going through the NICU experience. Not only did it feel amazing to know that so many people were helping my husband and I, but sooo many people wanted to know about MJ and his life. And that honestly means more to me then anything. I so desperatly want to make sure that MJ is never forgotten, and that his short life will live on in the love that my husband and I have for him.
The fundraiser started out pretty emotional. My little sister and I both started tearing up quite a bit, actually. Caitlyn was there when we lost MJ, so all I really had to do was look at her, and she knew what I was thinking. I am so thankful to have her in my life. And my whole family, really. My older sister has been a rock for me, to call and scream and vent. And my parents coordinated the entire fundraiser yesterday. My husband's family has been just as amazing. We truly are blessed with amazing families, and we are so thankful for them.

Anyway, soo many people came yesterday! I saw people that I went to high school with, that I haven't spoken to in years! And old neighbors and people we went to church with, and the list goes on and on. It meant so much to me that so many people came to support us. We got so many donations, easily enough to fill 200 bags full of goodies! Imagine, 200 families comforted just a bit, in memory of my amazing son MJ. How awesome is that???

We also received sooo many monetary donations and raffle ticket proceeds, and we sold 10-12 Awareness Bracelets! I wasn't really keeping count, I was talking to so many people, that it was truly a whirlwind yesterday.

And I would have to say that the best part of yesterday was meeting another Project Sweet Peas mom, Theresa. I live in Topeka, KS and my parents hosted the fundraiser in Mundelein, IL (just outside of Chicago). Theresa has started her Project, called Donny's Shining Light, in memory of her son, Donny. He is also a CDH baby who graced this Earth for six days. Theresa has just joined Project Sweet Peas, and I am so very thankful that I was able to meet her! I also got to meet her beautiful daughter, Rachel Rose. Rachel is Donny's little sister, and is 13 months old. Will (MJ's twin) totally loved her! It was so cute to see them together. It was so nice, too, to have
someone there who knows what I am going through, and I can totally relate to. Just about everyone that I talked to would say "You are doing so well . . ." and things like that. Theresa knows. She knows that I am not really doing that well, that I am real good at faking it. (Another b
logging babylost momma says 'Fake it until you make it' so that's what I am doing right now). That I can put a smile on and say, "Oh, thank you". Right now I feel like doing MJ's Memories is the one thing that I can do for my son, and therefore I have to do it the best to my ability. And that's why I am doing this. And it was so nice to have someone there yesterday who knows. And understands. And doesn't say how well I am doing, because she knows. Thank you for being there yesterday, Theresa!

Overall yesterday could not have been any better. I wish more then anything that I didn't have to do something like this. That I have my son in my arm's and we spent Christmas showering our two boys with presents and love. But instead we spend Christmas blinking back tears and feeling empty. We did our best for Will, but still, it was really hard. I love and I miss you MJ!! I hope that you are having an amazing time in Heaven. Hugs and kisses from your Mommy!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

It's Been a Few Weeks

So it's been a few weeks, a few emotional weeks. The holiday's are finally over and they weren't as bad as I thought they would be. It was very good to see Will's first Christmas, but very sad to have to celebrate without MJ. I don't want to get into too many details, because knowing that we have to live and we have to go one without MJ breaks my heart.

But today is our first fundraiser for MJ's Memories! I am very excited about it, yet it is very bittersweet because I would give anything to be able to have my baby boy in my arms and not have to do something to remember him by. The fundraiser is from 3 pm to 8 pm today at Kaiser's in Mundelein, IL. I will update later on today or tomorrow on how it went, and add some photos, too.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

So, I was really hoping that making and selling the Awareness Bracelets would be a really great way for income for MJ's Memories. After our first Craft Show, I thought that I was correct, but after last weekend's utter disapointment, I am just not sure if we are going to be able to. We have sold a few online (thank you to everyone who did), and a lot to family and friends (thanks!), but not enough to full fund everything that we plan on doing. I was looking around for another craft show to go to, but I can't find one for a few months. I don't know if I am looking in the right places or not. I am simply Googling 'Craft Shows in Topeka, KS'. Maybe I am not doing it right? I thought that in the Art and Craft Show world that there were events just about every weekend. I must be either wrong or not looking in the right places.

Hopefully at the end of the month at the fundraiser that my parents are doing, called MJ's HUGS (Help Us Give Support) that we will be able to sell a lot. I am really excited about that fundraiser. We have a ton of great raffle prizes, and they have already sold a ton of raffle tickets, which is really cool!

I sent out my first gift bag today (sort of), which is a little exciting. Averi Hope is a CDH baby who is really struggling right now. Prayers would be appreciated! Anyway, I met her mom, when she was still pregnant, and it turns out that she is from Fremont, CA, which is were my husband, Willie is from! Small world! Anyway, I sent her out a package today with some stuff that is gonna be included in our bags: a name plaque, baby blanket, teddy bear, birth record pillow, baby girl bows, and a deck of cards for Teresa and Kevin. I hope that they really like it! I hope that it can at least make them smile for a bit, because I know how hard it is to go through the incredibly emtional roller coaster that they are going through right now. Averi is going through a lot of the same stuff that MJ went through, and I just pray every day for a different outcome. I get so upset when any CDH baby losses their battle, and I feel especially close to this family because of the similarities of Averi and MJ. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers as Averi continues her battle.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Check Us Out On the News!!!!

MJ's Memories - - News, Weather, Sports - Topeka, Kansas

Posted using ShareThis

Well, Saturday was our big craft show to sell a ton of bracelets and raise lots of money for our gift bags. Yeah, right. We got to the 'big' show bright and early at 9 am (show started at 10 am) to make sure we got a good spot and set up so our table looked great. We were all ready and set to go at about 9:45 am and all we had to do was wait until people started showing up. Well, we waited, and waited, and waited. Then we started looking around and realizing that this was not at all what we had thought we signed up for. There were only about 20 vendors there (I thought there would be about 60+), and the place was very rundown and not in a very good neighborhood in Kansas City. As we waited and waited for people to show up, we started talking to the people around us. At about 11 am there had been literally about four people who showed and they just walked through and left. The lady next to us was selling crocheted purses and scarves and I asked her if this was how it always was (they have these shows every weekend), or if they expected more people to show up. She replied that they had already had double the amount of people that they had last week. I literally almost choked. Why the heck did we pay $25 to sit around all day?? After waiting about 30 more minutes and still not having anyone show up, we decided to book it. I did not want to sit around until 5 pm getting more and more mad. The website made it seem like a ton of people showed up and that this was a hugely successful show every weekend. Being that we live in Topeka, KS, about an hour away from Kansas City, we really had no way of knowing if they were telling the truth, or not. And they weren't. Very disappointing, but what are you gonna do? In the end we lost $25 and about three hours of our life. It could have been worse, we could have stayed all day. So glad we faked illness and booked it!

So we decided to not waste the day, and do something for MJ's Memories, at least. When I was at Hobby Lobby the other day, I found these way cute wooden plaques and things to put on them, and I bought a bunch. Being that we were in Kansas City, we stopped at that Hobby Lobby and bought some more, and some paint and went home to get started. They are so cute! We only had enough for 26, so we need to buy some more, but we bought both our Hobby Lobby, and Kansas City's Hobby Lobby out. I think they are just so cute! I would have loved one for MJ's isolette. Here is a picture of them, and my husband, Willie, working on them.

So after finishing our name plaques and resting on Sunday, today I woke up bright and early for our big news interview! We had to be there at 6 am, so I woke up about 4:30 am. We got there and Will was a super happy baby! I was so nervous he was going to be fussy, but he was such a cheeseball! Laughing and giggling at the news anchor, he worked the crowd for sure! The interview went great, it was about three minutes and I talked about MJ's story and what MJ's Memories is and then asked for donations. I really hope that they have a link to the story up on the website, I forgot to ask, so I emailed her and asked. It would be so cool to post a link! Hopefully we get some donations, or at least some interest. We got like four responses from our news article in the paper, so hopefully this will generate some interest, too. Regardless, I am just super happy that I was able to tell people MJ's story. Talking about him helps me and makes me remember him more. I emailed them several photos ahead of time, and they showed all of his photo, too, which made me really happy. I love looking at photos of him! Here's to hoping I get on in a few hours with link!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Busy Weekend Ahead!

Tomorrow we go to another Art Show to sell Awareness Bracelets to fund MJ's Memories! If you live in Kansas City area, come check it out -

1522 Holmes
Kansas City, MO

The show is from 10 am to 5 pm. Bracelets are only $10 each and come in TONS of Awareness Colors. Check out Bracelets for Awareness for examples of the bracelets we will be selling

Then Monday if you live in Topeka check out ...27 News at 6 am - they are going to interview me about MJ's Memories!!!! Hopefully they put a link on their website to the interview, because then I can post it here, as well. But if not, I will be sure to tell you how it goes on Monday afterwards. I am going to be bringing Will along with me, so he is going to be a superstar! I am pretty nervous about going on the show, but excited at the same time. I really wanted Willie to come with, but they said they just do not have enough room for both of us to be there. Which makes me sad, Willie and I are completly doing this together, and I really wanted both of us to be included. I almost backed out of it, but at the last second, I decided not to. I just hope that I don't cry. I always cry. I am pretty sure that I cry everyday. But I know when I do it in front of people it makes it wierd and uncomfortable. But maybe our sob story will get us some more donations, so maybe I should cry, :) LOL. We'll see how it goes.

Right now I am just excited about tomorrow. I really hope that we do well. There are going to be a lot of vendors there tomorrow, so hopefully that means a lot of people! We need to buy the bags soon, which I think will cost about $2 a bag. Not too bad, but I would ideally like to buy a lot of bags now, so we don't have to keep buying them every three months. We'll see how it goes. Wish us luck this weekend!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Woohoo! Thank you Jill! You are now able to leave comments on my blog! It works!!!

We Were Four

I was looking at Jill's blog, Footprints on our Hearts last week and she had a sculpture made by Dana at The Midnight Orange. I saw her sculpture and thought 'I have to have one of those'. So I emailed Dana and she made this amazing sculpture for Willie and I. It is a mom holding twin boys, one with angel wings, and a dad holding the mom. It just so perfectly fits our family, I can't even describe it. Willie has been my rock throughout everything we have been through; he holds me up when I am down and long to hold both of my boys together. I just love it! I ordered two of them, so both Willie and I have one with us at all times. I haven't gotten them yet, but will soon! She emailed me a few pictures of them and I posted one. It makes me cry each time I look at it, but I so totally love it!!

PS For some reason my link to post comments is not available, anybody know how to fix it? I am not very good at this kind of stuff. Please email me if you know how at Thanks!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Into December We Go . .

So we are past Thanksgiving, thank god! It wasn't as hard as I thought it was going to be. I think though that was because Will wouldn't stop screaming the whole day, LOL. He was still recovering from the plane right out to Nevada to visit Willie's family. I think the elevation got to him and upset his tummy. Willie said it was MJ pinching him so we didn't have to think about our first holiday without him. I think I agree a bit, too.

The fundraiser was amazing! It was very emotional, but in a good way. I didn't think it was going to be that emotional, but it was. We met another family that lost their baby to CDH this past year. That was so great to meet another family going through what we are. He was their first baby as well. I think we will stay in touch and friends with them forever, it's a kind of bond that is very special and unique, and I am very happy that we have that.

So this weekend is our big show! I am very excited about it, I really hope that we are able to sell a lot of bracelets. We have a ton to make this week! We figured out how many we want to have of each, and total we have to make about 60 bracelets this week. Willie is amazing, though and we have about half done already, which is nice. On Sunday after we got home from our trip, we made a three part poster board that tells MJ's Story. It really looks great! We are planning on putting that on the table at the art show. The last one we went to we found that the more we told about MJ, the more apt people were to be buying bracelets. This way, people can take a look at his pictures and read his story, and will be able to know him a little bit. We are also going to make one that says a little bit about Project Sweet Peas and what MJ's Memories and Bracelets for Awareness is. I am very excited for this weekend! Can't wait!! I will post pictures of our posters and table after Saturday.