Sunday, September 30, 2012

the Sweet Pea Exchange: A preemie and newborn clothing exchange

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We are pleased to announce the launch of our new program, the Sweet Pea exchange! To get things started we need your help! We are actively seeking donations of new and gently used preemie and newborn clothing.

 All donations can be mailed to:

 Sweet Pea Exchange
86 Hanover Avenue
Pawtucket RI 02861

 Thank you!
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Thursday, September 27, 2012

Sweetfully Yours Cookbook Sale

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Sweetfully Yours is full of recipes from NICU moms, Angel moms, family and friends and presented in a cute little book perfect for resting on your kitchen counter. Get one for yourself and one for each of your closest friends. It's not just a means of new ways to cook your food but also a way to help NICU and bereaved families throughout this country.

 Purchase yours today:

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Pregnancy and Infant Loss Candle Vigil

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October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss (PAIL) awareness month. Forever My Sweet Pea (Project Sweet Peas' National Bereavement Division) will be hosting our third annual candle vigil. All around the world events will be taking place to honor the sweet babies who are no longer with us. Let us honor your angel!

Please complete the signup sheet to have your angel's name added to the list of those that will be honored through a Project Sweet Pea division. This year PSP leaders across the country will be hosting remembrance events and lighting luminaries for each name that is submitted. Parents will be tagged, via Facebook, with the images of the luminary representing their angel. Add your angels name to the list today.

 Submit your angel's name(s) here:

 Deadline for name(s) submission is October 6th.

 Pictures will be uploaded by October 22nd, 2012.

 Also, be sure to enter our Pregnancy and Infant Loss Giveaway for a chance to win some beautiful prizes! 

E-mail for any additional information.
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Come join is for a ghoulish volunteer day!

Our 3rd Annual NICU Hallowboo is in memory of ‘Super Luca’ who lived his short life at Magee-Women’s Hospital NICU. In memory of his 2nd birthday volunteers come and help us make costumes just like Luca had in the NICU! Our goal this year is to make enough costumes to give EVERY NICU baby in Pittsburgh one! Don’t worry, we only cut and glue no sewing skills required.

 Here’s the haunting details:

October 6, 2012 at 12pm
Rostraver Volunteer Fire Department
A monster lunch is provided
For a $10 donation you will get 5 raffle tickets for our spooktacular raffle

If you bring goodies for our Parents Trick-or-Treat Bags, you will get 3 extra raffle tickets!
Goodies could be:
Hand Sanitizer
Lip Balm
Travel Toiletries
Stress Ball
Halloween socks

 If you can’t join us, consider making a donation to help us make the costumes!
With a $6 donation we can make 5 costumes
With a $12 donation we can make 10 costumes
With a $24 donation we can make 15 costumes
Contact for more information
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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

September Sweet Pea Spotlight: Erin & Ember

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September Sweet Pea Spotlight
Erin and Ember

My name is Jeanne Tucker, I am the founder of Erin's Mercy. To tell you a little about me and how my organization came about, I must tell you part of my story. I conceived mono-mono triplets in September of 2010. My husband and I lost one at 11 weeks of gestation. After losing one of our babies we found out that I was carrying a rare form of twins, known as Mono-Mono (Monoamniotic-Monochorionic) which in means they were growing in the same placenta and sac. They shared everything. The whole pregnancy had been up in the air, because it was a 50/50 chance that one or both of them would survive, due to cord entanglement.

At 21 weeks of pregnancy we found out that the my babies cords were intertwined but that they couldn't do nothing till I was 24 weeks gestation, due to the fact that there are too many risks and it’s not fair saving a babies that's earlier than that. So after making it to 24 weeks I was immediately put on hospital bed rest.
After about a week of the nurses poking, prodding, adjusting, the beeping, screaming, etc. I told my doctor that I was not happy in the hospital I needed to be in the comfort of my own home. I said "if I am not happy how are my babies supposed to be, I keep getting told you want me to make it as long as possible." So based on that I was allowed to leave!
About 2 weeks later I started having contractions. Went to the hospital, NOTHING. So they sent me on my way said that I had a slight bladder infection that was probably causing my contracting. Home on meds. When I got home I continued to have contracting for 2 days, one morning at 430am I woke up and thought that I had pee'd! and just kept peeing! About 730 rolls around and I finally call my Dr.
He said get in here now! So I dropped my husband off at work and on I went to the hospital to find out I was already dilated to a 6! I was terrified of what was going on, everyone was rushing around me, my mother in law was getting my husband from work (all I could think is "is he going to make it").
Shaking in fear awaiting surgery I hear that "HE MADE IT"!!
On March 18, 2011 two of the most beautiful little girls were born. I was so greatful to make it to 27 and ½ along with all the other Dr.’s and nurses as well! Mono-mono is where they share the same sac and placenta, they share everything it only happens one percent out of all twins. Everyone told me that they were luck to be alive; there cords were entangled so bad that if they stayed inside any longer that they wouldn't have made it. They were ready to be here they both did great pretty much breathing on their own the whole time; they started them on feedings after 24 hours of being in the hospital. Ember (baby A) weighed 2lb. 3oz. and was 14 ½ in. Erin (baby B) weighed 2lb. 1oz. and was 14in.
They were so small; the whole hospital talked them up all the time, they called them the Twisted Sisters of the NICY. They were going to be in an article in the N.W. Med magazine. The pregnancy was hard enough; there was nothing normal about it. They had a 50% chance that one or both would make it. Every day was up in the air they could have died any moment and I would have never known till the next ultra sound. I had a Dr. Visit every week until I got bed rested.
Then one day Ember (baby A) had started to get sickly on I was scared to death, I didn’t want anything to happen to one of my girls. So they stopped her feedings, put her on the C-PAP and put her on antibiotics instantly. They performed x-rays on both girls just to be safe they noticed that Embers bowls were sick but they caught it before anything bad happened, they also noticed Erin (baby B ) had sick bowls too. They lowered her feedings but kept feeding her.
The next day Erin wasn't breathing rite so they put her on the C-PAP and did the same thing like her sister. I get a call at 12:40 in the morning from the doctor telling me Erin wasn't able to breathe on her own so they put her on the ventilator, he also said he talked to the surgeon and they were going to evaluate her to see about surgery but they chose not to till the morning. Well in the morning when the surgeon evaluated her they moved for surgery at noon that way they had enough time to try and make her a little stronger. It was so hard to look at her paralyzed from all the medicine. When she went back for surgery, we were told an hour and they would call as soon as she was done. So we went up to see his mom and inform her of everything that was going on.
It seemed like it took hours for them to call and I just had a bad feeling so we started back to the hospital, a few blocks down the road we get a call from the hospital I was scared to death. Surgeon said she did really well they barely had to take any of her small intestine, in gave her a bag for her bowls. We rushed down there to tell her what a brave girl she was and that we were very proud of her.
After leaving the hospital we went for dinner, when we were getting ready to get on the freeway we got another call, nurse said to hurry up and get back she wasn't doing well. After all the hope we were given if I knew this was going to happen I never would have left. When we got there they were giving her CPR, they said they had been doing that since we pretty much left. Doctor said the best thing was to take her of the breathing machine and hold her so I said okay, I held her in my arms for her last few breaths it’s been the hardest thing ever, now I have one.
But even though I lost one I have the exact replica of her sister. Erin was my smile girl and until the day after Erin passed away Ember never smiled, so no matter how bad I just want to scream the only thing I can do it think that GOD may have taken her soul but he left her spirit behind with her sister. I started with natural occurring triplets, lost one at 11 weeks and lost another to an awful disease. Erin Rene Womack was born on March 18, 20011 and past way 04-01-2011, life didn't even give her a shot. She and her sister are the greatest gift life has to offer.
Ember was in the hospital for 90days. She weighed just a little over 6lbs when getting out; she had to come home on oxygen though. She remained on the oxygen for about 1 month. We have occasional check-ups at the lung Drs., but their saying that if she does well by the time she is 1yr 1/2; they’ll tell us that she is free to go. That’s so exciting! Her Dr. even says that she is doing as well as the babies her age and they’re not premature.
When Ember was a year old, she weighed 17 1/2lb. We had a Developmental appointment and she did excelled at it. The nurse said she is ahead for where she is at, and that it had been a long time since, she had seen a baby come in as good as her that, had been through everything she had been through in a long time.
Now at 16months old Ember is 19 1/2lb. She loves to run around, jump in the air, outdoors, there is nothing she won’t try. She just pushes me to the max with all the love she has given me. I feel so blessed every day to be here with her, and to guide her on her journey.
And I chose not to hold a grudge onto the past and rather try to look at the joy I had meeting my Angel. My life has been so sweet, I would never change anything. It just wouldn’t be the same and I wouldn’t be as strong as I am today. I still have both my girls with me; their life is just one now.
I chose to do this because I wanted to give back to our community and to continue to allow Erin to leave her imprints on others hearts as well as our own. The NICU is a very scary place, and it’s just good to know that someone has you in their prayers.

-Jeanne (Erin and Ember's Mommy)
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Vote for Project Sweet Peas

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Having a baby in the NICU is life-changing for families. Project Sweet Peas understands the emotional, physical, and financial strain that families endure during their stay and seeks to support their wellness. Project Sweet Peas also seeks to support families who are faced with the unimaginable pain of saying goodbye to their beloved child. By providing bereaved families with memory boxes filled with keepsakes and other resources, we help them to create cherished memories of their child.

This week we are asking our supporters to help us continue our mission by voting for us in the Chase Community Giving Contest. With this very important funding we have the potential to support thousands of NICU and bereaved families across the country. Voting will take you only a minute of your time and will help make a BIG IMPACT in the lives of these families. Thank you so much for your support.

VOTE FOR PROJECT SWEET PEAS here!​chasecommunitygiving/​charity/view/ein/27-3679594
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