Hope & Faith

In April last year, two beautiful baby girls were born at the hospital where I work and since then, I have had the privilege to work with the Mata family to share their amazing and inspiring story.

Their daughters were born sharing a chest wall, lungs, pericardial sac (the lining of the heart), diaphram, liver, intestines, colon and pelvis.

They've spent the last 10 months---their entire lives---in our NICU, receiving care until they were ready for surgery. I have gotten to know this family over the last 10 months and they are incredible people with strong faith and a truly inspiring attitude--- even when faced with unimaginable challenges, like leaving their whole life in Lubbock, along with their 5-year-old son, to live here in Houston so that their girls can get the care they need.
I became the lead member on our PR team to work with this family to share their story in the media and we have become very close. Over the last almost year, I've helped the family announce the girl's birth (when they were about 5 months old), their tissue expansion surgery and most recently, their separation surgery. I've also worked with our surgeons and experts so they could provide the media with insights into the complexities of the surgery and overall care during interviews.

It is with great joy that I can now say that Knatalye Hope and Adeline Faith were successfully separated by a multidisciplinary team of surgeons at Texas Children's Hospital. It was a complex surgery, but these miracle babies, in the hands of our skilled surgeons, now have the chance to lead independent lives.
I can't tell you what it means to me to know that this incredible family will get to watch their girls grow up and lead separate lives. I could write a novel about the incredible experience of working with this family and the surgical team, but I will let the stories myself and my team worked on with various media outlets tell their story because the images and videos are incredibly moving and beautiful.

My favorite story is the one I worked on with Janet Shamlian for the TODAY show. You can watch that one here. We also worked on a longer story with ABC's Nightline that you can watch here. The Houston Chronicle story is here and Kevin Reece did a wonderful piece on KHOU, here--- and there are many more but too many to share in this post. You can also view of a full gallery of photos on the Texas Children's Hospital Facebook page.
Knatalye
Adeline

I don't normally share a lot about my job on my blog---I work with a lot of families that have incredible stories, but I felt compelled to share this one (with the permission of the family, of course) because I think it's so inspiring. From the very start, this family had the attitude that this was all in God's hands and that He would take care of the girls--- and I never doubted it for a second, even knowing how complex the surgery would be.
This family has been a part of my life for nearly a year---Elysse and I talk almost every day and I am so thankful that I have had the blessing of knowing them. I also feel very lucky to have played even a  very small role in such a historic surgery, as this is the first time ever that a separation of conjoined twins configured the way Knatalye and Adeline are, was successful.

If you would like continued updates, you can follow the family's journey as their girls recover on their Facebook page and their YouCaring page. If you are so inclined, the family is also fundraising for all of the care and therapies the girls will need once they are discharged. As you can imagine, the girls will have to learn to sit, crawl, walk, etc. and I'm so grateful they will have the chance to do that.

Thank you for reading and allowing me to share a little part of what I do with you. If you're interested in learning more about what I do, I would love to hear from you. A lot of you have emailed me about what it's like to do PR at a children's hospital but I've never done a full post about it. Let me know if you would be interested!

*All photos by Allen S. Kramer/Texas Children's Hospital

New Purchases + Toddler Style

Hello and happy Monday! 

Today I'm sharing a few recent purchases for Harper. All of the Baby Gap items were purchased during a promo they had a couple of weeks ago where you received  50% off of your purchase if you ordered five or more items.

First though, I must share these absolutely adorable hair clips I got for Harper from one of my favorite hair accessory shops, Ryan and Wren.
Could they be any cuter? I have one of the double heart clips, two of the large leather heart clips and two leather snap clips. I have so many items from Mary's shop and I can't rave more about the quality and craftsmanship!

Now onto the clothing. This past weekend, I cleaned out Harper's closet and put stuff in storage as well as a donate pile. I realized she had very little clothing left since I got rid of anything that she had grown out of or was out of season. So I'm glad I picked up some new items for her closet before the temps start to rise a little here in Houston.

My favorite item is this amazing emerald green dress with eyelet detail. I love the color first and foremost, but the details make the dress feel so special. Can't wait for her to wear it!

The second dress is a simple stripe dress that's loose, comfy and lightweight. 

Another of my favorites is this drop-waist dress. I just love everything about it and of course the eyelet detail is a bonus. So fun for spring!

I can't resist a crisp white dress for spring and last summer's are long outgrown, so this pretty one is now sitting pretty in Harper's closet. 

Now onto tops, I picked up a few tunic-style tops to wear with leggings as we transition seasons. This one with embroidery and sweet fluttery sleeves is a favorite.

This top is one Harper actually had last summer--- and I couldn't resist buying it again because it was one of my favorites on her.
 |  eyelet flutter top  | 

These shorts are so precious! I know they're white and that they will probably be a disaster…but…bleach? 
 |  eyelet shorts  |  

I guess I had to throw one non-eyelet item into my order--- a simple pair of dark legging jeans.
|  legging jeans  |  

I hope you have a great week!

Our Weekend...

Today's weekend update will be short and sweet. I've been working a ton (evenings, weekends) and I haven't had much time to devote to the blog. Things will be slowing down (a little bit), so I should be back to a regular blogging schedule soon.

Saturday was a pretty laid-back day. It was rainy out and I worked on and off. We did our morning Little Gym class and went out for lunch. 

Harper has been fully recovered from the flu since Thursday so we were just thankful she was feeling well. We got lucky--- the pediatrician tested her on day one of symptoms (Monday) and got her started on Tamiflu that night. Kevin and I started the same meds on Tuesday and neither of us got sick. Harper had really high temps Monday night and on Tuesday she had a very low grade fever just in the morning. By Tuesday afternoon, she had no fever at all, which was incredible. She still wasn't herself, but she was on the mend much more quickly than we expected.
Sunday was more of the same--- lots of time at home since I was working again and we also went on a walk and headed to the Children's Museum after nap time to burn some energy.
Tonight we had dinner at Chuy's and I still feel sickly full. Damn that jalapeno ranch sauce!
 Hope your weekend was great!

StitchFix Review!

Sidenote, as this was a scheduled post: If you follow me on IG, you know Harper has come down with the flu. So we are all on Tamiflu now (us as a preventative measure since the flu shot is only about 1/4 effective this year) and hoping our little one gets better soon. Harper has never been this sick before and it was scary to see numbers on the thermometer we've never seen before. Thanks for all of the well-wishes everyone has sent!

My latest StitchFix box came in and I'm excited to share its contents with you. If you're interested in the name for each item, you can find them in the last picture of this post!


The top I kept from my fix is called the Silvio arrow print sleeveless silk blouse. I liked the print and the colors and I don't have anything in my closet like it. Plus, with warmer temps around the corner, it's nice to have some more sleeveless options.

Here is how I wore the top to work one day (I swapped these shoes for regular black heels)
|  top- stitchfix  |  pants- banana republic  |  necklace- dolceave  |  cardigan- old navy  |  

Next in my shipment was this rose-printed blouse. I actually loved the fit and style of this top (especially the length!) but the print wasn't doing it for me and I didn't love the off-white color either. I hope they have this top in different prints or solid colors because I would love to recieve it again.

The third item I received was this v-neck cardigan. I actually quite liked it, but didn't end up keeping it. Normally I like my cardigans to be a little longer, but I actually thought this one would be nice on its own (with a cami underneath) worn with a pencil skirt. I didn't bite the bullet with it because I would prefer it in a bright color for spring.
My fourth (and one of my most favorite items) is this navy blue dress by the brand Taylor. Though I absolutely loved it- I have a nearly identical one by J.Crew in my closet (it's navy and the exact same silhouette--- see it here).
Lastly, I got a pair of black legging-style pants, but they were too small and too short, so can't really show those to you on.
Overall, I enjoyed this fix and I like having these items delivered right to my door and being surprised when I open the box! If you're interested in trying StitchFix, you can use my referral link, here.
 Have a great week!
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