Monday, February 10, 2014

Beautiful Beginnings

Ever since I posted about my basket idea, so many people have contacted me willing to help. The school I work at even held a 50/50 raffle to raise money for the project. (I must add that even the winner of the 50/50 gave me her half to put towards the basket. There are seriously some amazing people in this world!) 

So all of this lit a fire under me and I wanted the baskets made right away! The problem was I just didn't know where to start. I was so overwhelmed with the idea of trying to find a lawyer, and fill out all of the IRS paperwork to make it legal. Honestly I never would have thought that starting a non-profit organization would be this intense. I didn't go to school for business, and I don't know the first thing about running a company on my own. I don't have the funds, the space, or the time to make this idea as successful as it could be. That is why I was trying to find help. I wanted someone to help with the legal side. Maybe help me fill out the paperwork and point me in the right direction from there. I also thought that it would be nice to have help fundraising, and collecting donations for the baskets. It just seemed a little much to take on all by myself. For a little while now I have been trying to contact a few local Down syndrome interest groups/associations, and have not heard anything back. I finally was in contact with someone that was excited to bring the idea up during the board meeting of one of the local groups. I was so excited, I went on the computer during my lunch break, wrote up a proposal, and designed a label for the company. I pressed send on the email and couldn't wait to hear back because I knew in my heart that this was just the start of something amazing. But, this horrible winter weather struck again and because of snow the board meeting was cancelled. I had to wait a few more days for a response.

When I finally called to ask how the meeting went, I was a little shocked. Honestly I was confused, and I still am. Basically, in so many words they said that they can not help me in the way that I would have liked them to. If they were to take on the legal aspect of the organization then they said that it wouldn't really be under my control anymore. They thought it was a good idea, but from what I understood, they were not going to help.

Ugh. After that conversation I felt pretty defeated. I thought that I was close to getting it all started. Back to the drawing board. Now what? There are so many questions swirling around in my brain and I just cant seem to figure out where to start.

How do I find a lawyer that will help me, free of charge? How will I get these baskets made and filled with everything all on my own? Where will they be stored? (Lord knows there is no space in my small house!) How will I pay for it all? How will I find the time to drive each basket to different hospitals in the area when a new baby is born? 

I believe in this idea SO much, and know that one day it will be just like I picture it in my head. I just need someone to show me how to get it all started and where to go from there. Then I can take control. I'll start small.. and then hopefully have the experience and funds to expand. There is a need for this organization, and I know it will make a difference. I know that it will grow to be something amazing.. it will just take a little time to figure out how to get to that point. I will continue to research and learn about this process so that this idea doesn't fail.

I have had a few questions about what my ideas were for items in the basket. This is what I was thinking:

-A letter explaining the purpose for the basket
-My story, along with other local family stories
-Early intervention information
-Local Down syndrome interest group information
-The Holland poem
-"Bloom" by Kelle Hampton (If you have never checked out her blog, you must do so now, she was a HUGE inspiration for sharing my story.)
 -A picture frame
-Baby items; a baby hat, baby blanket, teddy bear ...etc
-"Gifts" and "Gifts 2" (books filled with amazing stories about Down syndrome)
-Good/Positive online resources like facebook groups, blogs, and websites
-A congratulation letter from an adult with Down syndrome.
-A children's story about Down syndrome ( I still am deciding which story I like best, there are a few contenders. Honestly I wish I had one written because then I would use that ha!)
-a Down syndrome ribbon or pin

I know that there are a lot of people that want to donate and help me raise money to start this project, but I am not sure of how to go about collecting that. I think that it might need to be a "legal" non-profit organization before I can start a website where people can donate. Who knows... that's something I will have to look into! As for now, just know that from the bottom of my heart I appreciate all of the interest in wanting to donate. It really makes me so happy to know how many people there are willing to help!

I know that when this project is successful, we will bring happiness back to the delivery room. All children deserve to be celebrated on their birthday.

And I will end the post with some recent pictures of the little man, because I know that is why you really read this blog! He is just so darn cute.

Such a little love monster! 

I guess I forgot to mention that our heat has been broken for almost a week now. We hate it, and so does Anthony! 

But, that does mean that we get to snuggle close to keep warm! My favorite !

We have resulted to lock-down in our upstairs bedroom where the space heater can heat the room quickly! We also love the heated blanket! 

Being a silly man in the heated blanket

So much love! 

Caught mid-yawn. Gotta love those baby yawns! 

He found his feet recently, and it is adorable

Such a happy baby!!

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