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

Sunday, June 27, 2010

A Place of Love.....

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!

Hello!! I was gone last week on vacation and Heather manned the fort. Huge thanks to her - especially with all she has going on!

My last week was on a vacation that I take and look forward to every year. I went to Cape May, New Jersey. I won't bore you with the details because I remember blogging on it last year, but it's a very special and important trip to me, because it is where I see my extended family. My father took the same trip growing up and continued the tradition with his own kids. As a child, my father and his five brothers and sisters made the trip with their kids and it is a week devoted to spending time with family and in turn, learning about yourself. These years, my cousins have kids also, so my kids meet their extended family and hear the same stories that I grew up with. It's just a wonderful time and very important in building the tapestry of who I am and where I come from....and every year we all laugh about just how similar we all are. We celebrate upcoming births, special days, birthdays and even people who are no longer with us.

Although it is something I look forward to every year, it has its own frustrations. As Ram Dass once said, "If you think you are truly enlightened, go spend a weekend with your parents." Not that I think I am enlightened in any way, but it's a funny way of talking about making extended time work with your family. We actually stay in the beach house with my parents, as well as my sister and her boyfriend, and my uncle as well. Most years, there is at least one situation that comes up that aggravates someone for at least a moment. This year, though, I was determined not to let that happen. I was determined to treat and respond in love....

Before I left, I had stumbled upon a quote that I've thought about and mulled over many times. I have no idea the author, but it is, "Love is always the appropriate reaction." When I initially read it, I knew it to be true, but it is so hard to put in to place in every situation...Sooo - I hung it up on my fridge and made a point to think about it as I saw it.

A few days later, I stumbled upon a short story about Buddha.

Another day Buddha was walking through a village. A very angry and rude young man came up and began insulting him. "You have no right teaching others," he shouted. "You are as stupid as everyone else. You are nothing but a fake."Buddha was not upset by these insults. Instead, he asked the young man, "tell me, if you buy a gift for someone, and that person does not take it, to whom does the gift belong ?" The man was surprised to be asked such a strange question and answered, "it would belong to me because I bought the gift."Buddha smiled and said " that is correct. And it is exactly the same with your anger. If you become angry with me and I do not get insulted, then the anger falls back on you. You are then the only one who becomes unhappy, not me. All you have done is hurt yourself. "If you want to stop hurting yourself, you must get rid of your anger and become loving instead. When you hate others, yourself become unhappy. But when you love others, everyone is happy."The young man listened closely to these wise words of the Buddha. "You are right, O Blessed one," he said, "please teach me the path of love. I wish to become your follower." And Buddha answered, "Of course, I shall teach anyone who truly wants to learn. Come with me."

My family is so important to me, and after a little bit of reflection on these two thoughts, I found myself able to easily put aside any anger that normally would have resulted out of aggravation. They are my family, and I love them dearly so it should be easy to respond to them with love and kindness. But this is much harder when we are dealing outside our families. We should be reacting with love to everyone we come in contact with. And that's where the real work begins. Those that are angry, bitter, selfish, rude - we need to watch our reactions and respond from a place of love. Anger is poison that cannot create anything positive, it only destroys. Besides that, your reaction to someone's anger says more about you, then it truly does about them.

It is easier said than done, but challenge yourself for the next week to respond to frustrations and problems from love.

In love and kindness,

Email Elizabeth & Heather

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Not your father's Father's Day

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 was debating about what to write the past few days and wanted to touch on Father's Day and the importance of it. There are so many families apart of this blog with so many different situations that I wasn't sure I felt comfortable with writing from my own point of view. I started looking around online and came across this article from the San Francisco Chronicle. It's a very eye-opening article about fathers and their roles and it touched on some points that I definitely felt I could relate to in more than one way. I am hoping that many of you can relate to some of the thoughts portrayed here as wekk.  Although this article is written from the point of view of a father, I hope that you can take something from this and provide your feedback. Happy Father's Day and we hope you enjoyed this beautiful Sunday!

Sunday, June 20, 2010 (SF Chronicle)
Not your father's Father's Day
Jeff Gillenkirk

   As a father, I've come to dread the appearance of Father's Day. Not
because of lame presents or family members forgetting the day altogether.
My son usually tries to get up early enough to make me breakfast in bed,
though as he gets deeper into his teens the idea of early gets later and
"breakfast in bed" means that I'm breakfasting while he's in bed. But he
always rises to the occasion and provides a heartfelt, homemade card by
the end of the day and a poetry anthology or a CD of what he thinks my
favorite music is.

   What really troubles me about Father's Day is the bad rap fathers get.
Three years ago, Time magazine marked the approach of Father's Day with 
an article wondering "whether dads have done a good enough job to 
deserve the honor." Two years ago, presidential candidate Barack Obama 
used a Father's Day sermon to proclaim, "Too many fathers are MIA, too 
many fathers are AWOL." Last year, National Geographic News focused 
on a tribe in the Himalayas for its Father's Day coverage. The title: 
"No-Fathers Day: Remote Group Has No Dads, and Never Did." 
The concluding thought: "Are fathers really necessary?"

   As another Father's Day approaches - the 100th anniversary of the first
Father's Day, by the way - I ask America to celebrate, not castigate, its
fathers. After all, studies and census abstracts show that more American
dads are spending more time doing more things with their kids than at any
time in our post-agrarian society. Almost 2 1/2 million single parents
today are single fathers - an increase of more than 30 percent over the
past 15 years. The number of stay-at-home dads rose nearly 60 percent
between 2003 and 2008 and is expected to keep rising as the economy 
and family roles continue to change. Newsweek's Julia Baird reported in a
recent column that "Millennial fathers - those under 29 - spend an average
of 4.3 hours per workday with their kids, which is almost double that of
their counterparts in 1977." Finally, a Lever study that found that four
of out five dads who responded "show more physical affection to their
children than their parents did with them." A startling statistic from
that study was that these fathers "hug and kiss their children an average
of five times a day." Startling to me, as my father never hugged me once
in his lifetime. Not once.

   Clearly this is not our father's Father's Day. Millions of fathers still
have to step up to the plate, however. Nearly 25 million children are
growing up in America without fathers - making our country the world's
leader in fatherless families. A distressing 28 percent of white kids, 39
percent of Latino kids and almost 70 percent of black kids will wake up on
Father's Day without a their biological fathers at home. The impact of
this is devastating. Children without fathers are more prone to nearly
every negative development imaginable: more drug use, more depression,
more crime, higher rates of teen pregnancy, dropping out of school, gang
activity - and a lifetime of poverty.

   Kids need their fathers. Most won't say it in words, but they're certainly
acting it out. Father advocate groups around the country are showing men
how to do better. They are pushing to reform divorce laws and welfare
regulations that end up separating dads from their children. President
Obama has gotten involved in a positive way, providing generous funding
for several fatherhood-strengthening initiatives. And a new trend is
becoming clear: More dads are doing more for their kids since the days
when families lived together on farms. They're demonstrating awareness
that the word father isn't just a noun - it's a verb. "To father" means to
be involved from the moment your child enters this world, until the very
day that one or both of you leave it. Hopefully, the more fathers who do
this, the fewer stories will appear about the ones who don't - which would
be better for everyone.

   After all, you always get better results with praise than criticism. Every
good parent knows that. Happy Father's Day.

In love and kindness,

Sunday, June 13, 2010

A Shade of Gray....

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!

Hi friends!! Hope this blog finds you well and enjoying your summer thus far with the kiddos and family. We've had sleepovers galore, play much so that the poor guys over here got put back on a schedule because Momma just doesn't know how to exist in a sea of chaos!! I just feel completely out of control without one. Probably says something about my personality, because my husband can exist with or without one....and my kids prefer not having one!! ha ha!! But I am one of those people who like to know what's coming, know what they are supposed to be get it.

So the other day I was reading the news and I came across a statistic that shocked and appalled me...and one that relates very strongly to Pass It On, Baby! In 2010, over 21% of children in the United States will now be living below the poverty line. Over 1 out of 5....completely unbelievable to me and so very sad. I sat down with my husband and talked at length with him. My mind working the way it does, I wanted to know who was to blame. Not because I need some scapegoat, but because I always feel that if you can identify the problem, you can get to the solution. As we were talking, I was completely aware that I kept focusing on the problem and the solutions, and he talking about just understanding it all from every different perspective....totally different ways of looking at it.

He practices something that I need to try to put in action a little more. I like to think of it as "compassionate understanding". He doesn't want to talk about who's at fault, he just wants to see the situation from all angles and understand it. Never judges it....just understands it. So say we are talking about the illegal immigration issue...I'll be all up in arms about who should do what, who's to blame, how to fix the situation....and all the while, he is telling me individual stories from all sides, so I can understand the situation truly. He looks at pretty much all situations like that....I'm the black and white thinker and he's always talking to me about the gray.

I used to get so annoyed during these conversations thinking that understanding the situation has nothing to do with fixing the situation, but I was wrong. Understanding, and not judging any one side of the issue has everything to do with fixing it. Because when you do have a suggestion or an improvement, it comes from a place of love and respect....not blame. It results in truly helping the people at the heart of the situation, not judging who was right and who was wrong and then figuring out a punishment for who was wrong.

On a very small level, take an argument between two siblings where one hit the other and then the children came and told their mother. (Not that this would EVER happen in my house.... ;) I used to handle the situation by saying, "Who hit?" "Why did you hit?" "We don't act like that in our home, so you are in time out." "Apologize to him and go sit on the stairs." But in handling a situation like that, the child that did hit never learned compassion. He was never asked to think about how his brother felt or how he felt in the past when someone hit him. That type of discussion probably does a lot more to deter a child from hitting then the five minutes on the stairs....And so I'm learning as I go. :)

That is one of the nice things about Pass it On, Baby! The help DOES come from a place of compassion and understanding. It is not our job, nor our intent to ever figure out WHY someone is in that situation, but it is our job once they have reached out to us -- to help them. To love them and to treat them just how we'd like to be treated if the situation was reversed. What is gained from behaving in any other way? Sometimes I think that judgment itself, is a lot of the problem. Instead of wasting time talking about why the problem occurred, what if we just accepted it and moved toward a solution?

These families that reach out to us do so based on a lot of factors....and simply put, none of them really matter. What does matter is that when we read those notes, there is a mother hurting and a child going without on the other end of the note. That's where our focus belongs....Hugs and love to each one of you reading these words tonight.

In love and kindness,

Email Elizabeth & Heather

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Life's a beach!

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!

Special thanks to Elizabeth helping me out while Cade and I were vacationing on Ono Island in Alabama! My girlfriend, Jodi, had mentioned on her facebook a couple of months ago about being excited to head to the beach. Jokingly I wrote back - "Take me with you". That joke turned into some serious thought and then planning out a besties trip with our kids. Her parents own a beach house on Ono Island in Alabama (right on the border of Florida - literally like 3 houses down was Florida) but are temporarily in Sweden for work. So, Jodi needed to check in on it and see how it was doing - plus enjoy a little beach time in the process. 

Now, this was the first time that Cade had ever traveled this far in a car so I was a little nervous but nevertheless that wasn't going to stop us from being beach bound! We started out on Friday driving 4 hours to Houston. We met up with Jodi and her daughter Emma there and then the next morning headed out for Alabama. We started off with Dora, Diego, and Nemo. However, Cade hasn't yet gotten into a lot of these shows so he was only interested in Wonder Pets and Jungle Book. Poor Emma would never again see "her" shows the rest of the trip. The last couple of hours was pure torture. A screaming almost 2 year old with Emma chiming in when she'd see him get attention so I finally crawled in back and decided to play entertainer for awhile. Luckily that helped and we finally made it in 1 piece to Mobile. (her parents regular home is there which is about an hour from their beach house) Cade was still saying "beach mommy - beach" but yet we still weren't there yet. Finally on Sunday we made the last 1 hour leg to Ono Island and we were there!

This home was beautiful! A four bedroom 3 bath home that was just finished being remodeled. All the furniture still had tags on it! There was only 1 TV and it didn't have any cable hooked up so it was nice to know the kids wouldn't be able to watch much. The floors were all wood and every room had a color theme. Truly a beach home out of a movie! The back patio overlooked the saltwater pool below and that was right infront of the "soon to be" beach with a boat dock.  Most of the homes had their own personal private beaches but they were still working on theirs.

Cade was super excited to get his "suit suit" on and check out the beach! We went a few doors down where we would be at the islands canal so the waves aren't as big and we are still on the private beach. I took Cade's shoes off and he was totally upset with the sand on his feet. Although he has a sandbox, he never really plays inside it. Just outside of it playing in the sand. So he complained and whined for quite a bit. I put his crocs back on and that seemed to help him a bit but it definitely was taking a little for him to get used to. He finally got in the water and got used to it hitting his feet.  He then let me hold him and take him out in the water. He wasn't sure about the waves hitting him but luckily these weren't too big.

That night once we did a little grocery shopping (my child acted like an untamed animal in the grocery store - never happens at home but I guess he knew we were on vacation) and got the kids to bed,  Jodi and I decided to stay up and talk and drink some wine. We sat out on the back patio listening to our Pandora talking about everything under the sun. We hadn't done this in YEARS! We really enjoyed it! We actually enjoyed it so much that we didn't notice that it was FOUR O'CLOCK in the MORNING!! Lord help us - as we knew that morning would come bright and early with two little kids. And the shutter blinds hadn't been put up on the doors to our bedrooms yet.

6:15am came nice and early the next day. Cade usually sleeps till 7:30 or 8:00 but not that morning! The sun was shining brightly and they were both super excited to get up and play with each other! It was a VERY long day for Jodi and I. Luckily we were just hanging out on the beach all day! We went to the big beach the next two days. The waves were bigger so Cade was a little more apprehensive but after he'd warm up to it - he'd finally go look for seashells or get in the water. Emma was a little beach bum! She was in the water, swimming like a fish, digging in the sand, she was having a blast! The last day, Cade was chasing all the seagulls down the beach. I had to chase him nearly a 1/2 mile! A couple of guys who were a little down the way from us, brought over some chips or something and started feeding the birds. Next thing you know - there was literally like 30 birds hovering over us. I was freaking out! I was a little concerned that we were going to get pecked or something. But Cade was LOVING it!! He kept waving and saying "Hi Birdie!".

Anyways, we enjoyed our trip and headed back to Houston. We arrived late and after a whining child that would only watch Wonder Pets for hours on end - I decided that maybe we should finish the trip while he was sleeping. I made it in that night (peacefully and quietly) around 1:30 in the morning.

I was glad that I was able to be a little spontaneous and just plan and make it happen. I hadn't been with my best friend for that many days in a row since we were 23 years old. Our kids hadn't ever spent that much time together either. It was really nice to just "do it!" I am usually the planner, the OCD one that has to have everything all lined up. I have been contracting and I knew that I had the ability to up and go when I wanted so I just decided to do it!

Boy was I glad. I am usually going 150 miles an hour between my own business consulting for advertising and marketing, contracting, teaching classes, Pass It On, Baby! and then just being a mother and wife. But I like it that way! This trip though truly reminded me that I need to slow down, stop working so hard, and just enjoy this life! It truly can be a beach life any time I choose if I would just make it a priority. I get all caught up in getting the never-ending "to do" list finished and always working in my off time but I can't really enjoy all those things if I don't have some down time to reflect.

This was a wonderful trip and I hope that I can take this renewed energy and zest for life into all areas in my life and remember that "Life's a beach!"

Much love to you all!

In love and kindness,

Email Elizabeth & Heather