Hello friends and family! I want to let you know about a new program I started back in September. I was thinking back then about how I wanted to spend my time, and how I could make a difference in the world. I ain't getting any younger you know!
I had been involved with various charitable organizations over the years. I was deeply involved with school activities when the girls were growing up. I liked helping, and I knew I wanted to continue giving back with my time. In an effort to follow the Golden Rule - Do unto others as you would want them to do unto you - I thought about what little ole me could do. I also had (and still have) a desire to make a difference, and to let people know I am a Christian who is blessed and I want to share all God has given me.
So, I made a list. Yes, I actually wrote down on paper the things that bring me joy (it's a good thing for everybody to try). I wanted to pick a venture that I knew was something that I would feel good about, not tire of, or come to think it as not important.
I let the list sit on the table for a few days. I thought about how some of the charities I had been connected with in the past were too "meeting heavy" and too "fundraising heavy." I wanted to do something that was turn-key and saw quick results. I wanted to find something that was local and hands on.
Top of my list: I LOVE LOVE LOVE babies! I love pretty much everything about them. My mother-in-law used to say "I could just eat him up" (a southern expression?) and that is how I feel. A baby is in the room? My focus is on that baby!
I decided I wanted to do something with babies! So, once the decision was made I conferred with my pastor because I wanted to put something together through my church and get the support of other members.
My new charitable effort is a baby layette program for the two local hospitals here. As it would just so happen (hello God?) a head nurse of the OB department of one of the hospitals goes to my church. I spoke with her and she told me how some mothers who give birth don't even have an outfit for the little one to go home in. They are not prepared at all! No baby clothes, no diapers, no receiving blankets, nothing. I think it's hard for most of us to believe it when we come from families who joyfully expect and prepare for a new baby's arrival!
So, I have turned my guest bedroom into baby layette central! I have started collecting baskets, and all kinds of newborn baby clothes, and infant diapers, blankets, etc. Anything and everything for a newborn! I have put together baskets full of these goodies and passed them on to my church friend from the hospital. She now keeps 2 or 3 baskets in her car and hands them out to the needy moms right before they go home. I have also included in each a hand-written note to let the new mom know that she is not alone, that we love her & her new baby, and hope the items in the basket help.
It's a GOOD START and a gesture of caring.
So far my church family has been donating generously and I am very appreciative. But, if you would like to give to the program too, please do!!! Most of you know me and can reach me. I will gladly come pick up items. (There is also a bin in the church narthex.) I can take new and "almost new" baby clothes up to 6 months, blankets, towels & washcloths, hats, socks/booties, disposable diapers for newborns, and baby shampoo and soap. No baby powder please. I am also collecting baby beanie stuffed animals because I try to put one in each basket.