How we work

We are an online community of kind-hearted individuals who directly donate gently loved children's clothes to mothers who could use a little kindness. The wonderful donating mothers lovingly box up the clothes that they once loved their own kiddos in and send them for another mother to love on her children via the US Mail - Parcel Post. If you are in need, know someone in need or want to help by donating, please contact us at If you can't do any of these but would like to spread our message - thank you kindly! ~ Elizabeth & Heather

Monday, April 26, 2010

Clothing for tornado victims...

Please note: If this is your first time visiting our blog, please click here to hear the premise of Pass It On, Baby! and how it all began.... Pass It On, Baby!

Dear Pass It On, Baby! Community,

We have received an email from one of our PIOB readers about a tornado victim family in Mississippi. Apparently on Saturday a horrible storm rolled through Mississippi bringing a string of violent tornadoes that have been blamed for at least 12 deaths and dozens of injuries.  Hundreds of people have been pushed from their homes. (please see this link for more storm details)

A set of 3 boys aged 2, 3, and 8 lost their mother in the storm and all of their belongings. If you or someone you know have clothes that could fit any of these ages, please send to their grandparents home at the following address:

The Carpenters
8843 Myrleville Road
Benton, MS 39039

We can provide you with a shipping label if need be. Please send us an email by clicking below. As always, the Pass It On, Baby! community is here to help clothe those in need and we definitely want our presence to be known for this devastated family.

In love and kindness,

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Releasing expectations...

Please note: If this is your first time visiting our blog, please click here to hear the premise of Pass It On, Baby! and how it all began.... Pass It On, Baby!

It seems like that during this transition in season, me and my family are also undergoing some transitions in life. I have new career opportunities in my path, we are finally starting to get ahold of how to budget our money, my 22 month-old is transitioning from a baby to a toddler, my marriage is evolving into a more communicative - more expressive relationship, and even my sisters and extended family are under going some positive changes as well. It seems like there is change all around me.

If you were to know me, you'd know that I don't necessarily do change all that well. I have been one to resist change due to fear. Fear that the change wouldn't turn out the way that I would want. Or that my expectations wouldn't be met. I have a really hard time with that. My expectations that is.

I expect everything to go according to the little plan I have so carefully thought out in my head. I believe that my life or experience or situation will be perfect if it could only go like "THIS"... However, life has a funny of way of showing up and teaching you a thing or two about planning.

One example is that I have been contracting on a job for a couple of months now. Now I expected to have only a few weeks at this job and with my crazy schedule of teaching fitness classes, running my marketing consulting business, Pass It On, Baby!, and being a wife and mother - I thought for sure I couldn't keep up with that kind of schedule for more than a few weeks. However, 3 months later, this job has turned out to a more long-term contract position and now quite possibly a full-time job. I have been feeling so lost and confused as to what to do with schedule since in my mind - this job would be over by now and I would go back to the schedule I had before this. But life had a different plan. I am not complaining because the money has been great and we are finally getting things back on track. However, I am going to have to decide here at some point how to release other things in my life and keep the balance. My expectations may not have been met but it has definitely worked out in my favor if I can only start releasing things off my plate. That's hard to do with my "you can do it all" mentality.

Another perfect example of my inability to release expectations is when other people get involved. Like our dinner and evening with my father-in-law and the family. I expect for the things to run smooth, people know where to be and at what time, as well as a time schedule (cause you know I have a 22 month-old and we have to keep schedules for the most part), and how our evening will go. I started having a difficult time when the family couldn't figure out where we should eat, what time we were meeting, who all could meet us there, and what plans we would have afterwards. I started to feel flustered and chaotic. Definitely not my cup of tea. But as my husband so gently reminded me that I can't control everything and sometimes I need to go with the flow. I couldn't allow myself to relax and enjoy our time together because I was so frustrated that my expectations of the evening weren't being met. Once my husband had gently nudged me to be aware of how I was being, I realized it and tried to take a deep breath to relax. Doing my best to enjoy the moment for what it was and not create this perfect idea in my head. What was meant to happen was happening - I had the choice to enjoy it or be miserable. By the end of the evening, I was relaxed and enjoying the interaction of the family and the kids instead of desperately trying to control the moment.

I say all of this only because I truly believe that the student is also the teacher. As I learn (as we all learn), we should share with those who are willing to listen about our experiences in bettering ourselves as you never know how it may impact another.

I know that I have a lot to learn and practice about having less expectations. I know that I will be less unhappy and more likely to enjoy life if I can stop expecting things to be a certain way. Now it doesn't mean that I won't still make a plan but it does mean that I need to start being more flexible when that plan takes a turn and know that it is exactly the way it was intended to be.

Here is a quote that really helped to solidify this releasing expectations for me. "Success is getting what you want. Happiness is wanting what you get." ~ Dale Carnegie

May you know the exact reason you've read this today and how it can impact your own life.

As always, we appreciate you for reading our blog, sharing our message, donating or receiving clothes and being apart of our community.

In love and kindness,

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Everyday Miracles....

Please note: If this is your first time visiting our blog, please click here to hear the premise of Pass It On, Baby! and how it all began.... Pass It On, Baby!

I think the old saying goes "sometimes you're the bat and sometimes you're the ball" ... it's kind of the way life works out. Sometimes you're the message, other times the message is directed to you. Lately, I guess I've been both...and learning a lot about the risks you take, the benefits you reap and remembering that you either jump head-first in the pool or walk away all together.....there is no sitting on the side. =)

Easter Sunday is an important time for our family. Yes, it's a time where we celebrate with food, candy and egg hunts - but for my husband and I, its also a time where we take stock of our lives and the way in which we are raising our children. It was important for us to celebrate by going to Mass on Easter Sunday. We had the kids dressed up beautifully, had finished up one egg hunt, had an amazing breakfast and were feeling pretty good about life. I remember the moments clearly, because I teared up a few times thinking about how perfect the day was and how I wished I could bottle the moment and never have it leave. So, when my two year old, Ashlyn, started getting squirrely in Mass, I took her out and let her wander the halls without a second thought. There were LOTS of moms and dads out doing the same thing, each with their own level of frustration. While Ashlyn explored, I read the bulletin boards and noticed a 5K going on for a young girl and her boyfriend that had passed away in a car wreck earlier in fall. Ashlyn distracted me and I went back to watching her when a grandfather approached me and told me how nice Ash looked. I thanked him and remarked the same about his granddaughter in her Easter dress. He had noticed our family in church and talked about how well behaved my kids were and how nice they looked. (Not sure what moment he saw them in --hee hee...because the behaving can sometimes be a rarity!) Anyhow, we started talking about having large families. He was so interested in our family because he, himself had seven children and my young family reminded him of his own. He talked about the fun of the holidays and how he also had a boy dominated family...we just seemed to hit it off and were at ease talking. He looked down and paused for a second and said, "Im so sorry. I don't know why I am telling you this, but that was my youngest," and motioned to the bulletin board where the memorial race was advertised. His fifteen year old daughter had been the girl who passed away in the car wreck. I hugged him immediately and we both started crying. Here I was in the moment of absolute joy with my baby, and he was living his first Easter without his own. We talked for a little before Mass was over and it ended up that I volunteered for his sister-in-law on a weekly basis. A week later when I ran in to her, she pulled me aside and told me that her brother-in-law had struggled with his faith since the accident and had seen his running in to me as a message that people and life in general is good. It was his moment of peace on Easter. Its funny you  know, because I'm always struggling to get to church too, struggling with my beliefs, struggling to be a better person. Strange to think that you could be a message of compassion for someone when you yourself are looking for that same message....

At the same time, I see someone like Tammy as my own sort of message. She represents all that you can do when you truly give of yourself to help another. If you haven't read her story....please click here. If you remember, Tammy is the mother of two who was chatting on a moms message board with a mother two states away who had been diagnosed with lymphoma. With no one to help her care for her small daughter during her treatments, she had started to turn them down until she could figure something out. That was when Tammy had the thought - what if I cared for her daughter (she runs an in-home daycare center) while she focused on getting better. It was a story that touched so many of our hearts. Recently Tammy wrote to us again, not for any accolades, but to make sure that the mother she was helping by caring for her beautiful daughter, knew how loved she was. Take a moment and read about the good news and the struggles they have experienced is amazing. Tammy reminds me that sometimes the real answers don't come from the head - that sometimes that gets in the way. Sometimes the real answers are irrational, unclear and uncertain.....but in the end, those moments will make it all worth living.

I say it a lot - but I feel so lucky to meet these people along the way. They humble me and remind me how I want to live and who I need to be. We recently heard from a mother of a miracle baby. A baby born without a heartbeat and without brain fuction....who remained that way for 13 minutes. He wasn't supposed to live. He wasn't supposed to eat, to walk, to talk.....and yet he is. With a mother who never gave up. With another inspiration....

Sometimes I spend so much time making lists, dealing in reality and common sense that I forget that there are miracles that occur each and every day. They come in the forms of people. They show in the form of example. They touch our lives and make us want to be just a little better from having met them. So here's to them. and to you...those of you that have walked as an example and who make the beauty in the world seem just a little bit brighter. You never know who is watching, who is learning, whose life you will have touched or influenced. But the world is just a tad better because of you, today.

In love and kindness,

Email Elizabeth & Heather

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Easter Fun!

Please note: If this is your first time visiting our blog, please click here to hear the premise of Pass It On, Baby! and how it all began.... Pass It On, Baby!

We hope all of you had a very happy Easter! This past Easter my little family (Me, Chris & Cade) went to Kansas finally to visit my dad's side of the family. We had missed the Christmas holiday due to the big blizzard at the end of December.

Cade had everyone's names memorized, GG (for great grandma), Gray Papa (aka great grandpa), Keri, Kim, Bruce, Charna, etc...I was pretty happy that he said everyone's name on cue so well since he's only 21 months old.

We spent time on the golf course hitting balls with daddy, driving the golf court (yes, he got to steer), hanging out at my uncle's with a big bonfire and playing with ALL the animals (like 5 cats, 3 dogs and lots of birds).

Cade got to a "trial run" easter egg hunt at GG's on Saturday morning since Sunday we had plans. (Plus he wouldn't know the difference.) When Sunday came, Cade had a cute little handed down outfit from my friend Anna who's been "passing on" clothes to Cade for the last couple of years. It hand only been worn a handful of times and looks nearly brand new. We headed over to my Great Aunt's house in Topeka and spent the day with with my cousins and their little ones. The day started off with an Easter Egg Hunt. Cade being the youngest, the older kids had been instructed to help him find eggs or make sure he had an even amount. Cade gave them a run for their money. He was hustling up eggs left and right so eventually my husband would take eggs out while Cade wasn't looking and put them down for the other kids to find.

Since Cade doesn't really eat candy yet (it will happen soon enough) nor does he know anything about money, we gave all the earnings of quarters and candy to the other kids. He just had fun playing with the eggs and hiding them again.

We enjoyed our trip, albeit we were exhausted. It was nice for us to get away and for Cade to learn about the rest of his family. I got to slow down from my very hectic schedule as I usually teach classes, work a contract job, handle my marketing clients and then fill in the rest with being a mom and wife. Being in a small town really helped me slow down and just enjoy. It felt nice not to have every minute of the day planned until bed. Sometimes we would just lay around until after lunch and then decide to do something. My goal is to continue working towards a day a week that I have that same feeling. Less planned more relaxed. 

All in all Easter was enjoyed by everyone. Cade is still talking about GG, Gray Papa, etc to this day so it must have been memorable for him too even though he's only 21 months. :)

As spring is fully upon us, families in need are looking to clothe their children with seasonal clothes. Please look through your closets and see if you have a few outfits (in good used condition) to donate to a family in need. Let us know and we will gladly find a match. Thanks for listening and as always for Passing It On!

In love and kindness,

Friday, April 2, 2010

The Season of Beauty ♥

Please note: If this is your first time visiting our blog, please click here to hear the premise of Pass It On, Baby! and how it all began.... Pass It On, Baby!

I LOVE spring. It's my season. I've always lived in some corner of the Midwest, so spring is a welcome change from snow, lack of sunshine and overall dreariness that comes with the tail-end of winter. I fall in love with the world and life in general just about the same time every year. I get really (probably nerdily so) in to the whole idea of the season of rebirth. Of starting over....light from darkness, second chances, new beginnings. And more than anything...the beauty of it all.

Beauty has been on my mind a lot lately. Not the skin-deep outside appearance type, but that which is true, full of love and makes our lives extraordinary. This past weekend, my husband and I spent a weekend in Chicago sans kiddos. One of the "must sees" on our list was the Art Institute. It holds a special place in our hearts because way back in what feels like a cross between just yesterday and a lifetime ago, he asked me to marry him. So, on our walk down Memory Lane, we spent some time there. We loved it on so many levels. For me, the paintings represent a glimpse in to someone's soul and what they themselves found beautiful in the world. There were paintings of the less fortunate, pictures of loved ones, pictures of religious occurrences, paintings of strangers, of pets -- you get it. But what's so magical about it all, is that each person painted (or photographed, or sculpted) what they found beautiful and profound. They focused on their little corner of the world and made sense of it how they could. And all of sudden, what should have been a revelation from long ago, came to me. It doesn't matter how we make sense of the world - how we add beauty (if you will) but that we do. That we do create and improve and give our best - wherever and to whatever it may be.

Throughout my life, I hated those questions that you might do at work or in any "getting to know you" session where you had to say something unique about yourself or what made you different. I still don't have a good answer to the question. What's unique and different about me? Who knows. Maybe how I see and feel the world....but again, isn't that just like all of us? Maybe for me, a better question would be how I make sense of the world. Helping others (primarily children) helps me make sense of this lifetime. Why? Because my path lead me down that path. I was a young mother and proceeded to have five kiddos - so much of my life has been dedicated to raising them, teaching them and caring for them. I started out struggling along the way - and so it's no great stretch that I might help someone coming along a similar path that I did. The artists make sense of the world by painting, sculpting, photographing that which is beautiful. They include symbolism and themes and their own perspectives and points of view. For those that love art, they add beauty in to the world. The same can be said for those that write stories, or those that create music. All of us are just making sense of the world which the eyes and perspective that we were given. And to me it's all so beautiful.....

After I had this thought or realization, or whatever you want to call it, my husband and I were walking around the city. We came upon a boy (really - he was pretty young - certainly not even 21) that was standing on a milk-crate preaching his faith. It was beautiful. Not because I necessarily believed in everything that he said, but because it was said in love for what he was doing. He believed SO strongly in the words that he was saying that you couldn't help but smile when you heard his words. He preached against racism and arrogance and fear and talked about those as sneaky forms of hate. We loved his conviction....he added beauty to the world because his beliefs were so pure, honest and built on love for his fellow man.

Later that day, Dave and I stopped to get a treat as we walked within the city. Just outside the shop, there was a man selling Streetwise (which is a publication that those who are homeless sell so that they are not just pan-handling - but actually selling a product). I watched through the windows as a group of young adults approached the man and talked with him. They were the type of people that I always look upon with interest and maybe even envy - those who are totally comfortable in their own skin. The girl that was leading the conversation was warm, smiling and totally at ease. The group was introducing themselves by name and at the end of their short interaction, the girl reached in to her backpack and pulled out a grocery bag filled with non-perishables. I realized then, that each person in the group had a backpack on, and guessed that they must have been doing this repeatedly. It was beautiful and brought tears of humility to my eyes.

There are those out there creating beautiful parks, helping people, rescuing animals, painting, writing, dancing, raising children, planting gardens, being amazing friends (and man, do I have some of them!!=) - simply put - just processing the beauty that they see on this Earth and I am so glad that each and every one is doing it in their own way. Sometimes, especially when Heather and I depend on our word getting out, I (I won't say "we" because she may be doing better than me - LOL!) expect everyone to just hop on board with our cause and just get to helping people. But, that's a really arrogant view, right? And I'm learning....bear with me! =) There are MILLIONS of great causes around the world - we just can't each stand for everything....and it also isn't my job to stand over here and judge and insist you process the world the way I do.

So, beautiful people -- HAPPY EASTER!! I hope you view the world as beautiful and that you see that each of our roles in this world are beautiful also.

In love and kindness,

Email Elizabeth & Heather