Welcome to the Sweet Pea Project's Blog, part of the Sweet Pea Project's effort to create a supportive and compassionate community for those of us affected by the death of a child. Here you will find updates on the Sweet Pea Project, as well as anything going on in the world that relates to childloss. If you have a suggestion for a topic you would like to see discussed here, I'd love to hear it. Please make sure you stop by the official website, www.sweetpeaproject.org and feel free to email me for any reason at anytime at Stephanie@sweetpeaproject.org.
peace, Stephanie Cole (Madeline's Mom)

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

3rd Annual Sweet Pea Sisters & Brothers Picnic

You Are Invited!

3rd Annual Sweet Pea Sisters & Brothers Picnic

There is no greater pain for a parent than the pain of outliving their child.  But we parents are not the only ones who suffer.  The death of a baby can be very difficult on our surviving children, and even our subsequent children. These kids witness their parents wrestling with overwhelming grief, and struggle with their own feelings of sadness and confusion. They deserve a day just to be carefree children, playing with their parents in the sunshine and having fun, and that is what our annual picnic is all about.

Sweet Pea Project will be holding this special event for children who have lost a brother or sister during pregnancy or infancy on Saturday, June 1st, 2013.  Parents are invited to bring their surviving and subsequent children to Lititz Springs Park in Lititz, PA, from 4pm-7pm to play, eat, and enjoy each other's company.  This event is free but registration is required.  To register, go to www.sweetpeaproject.org/picnic and click on Picnic Registration Form!  Registration will close on April 25.

Just as we did in years past, we will be offering tons of food and family fun activities.  Dancing Bears Music will be performing on the bandshell stage, Kulfan Photography will be doing free family portraits at the park, Bob's Critters will be doing live animal demonstrations, Gymboree of Lancaster will run bubble and parachute playtimes and Acts of Jennius will be leading kids in some hula-hooping fun.   Country Conjuring and Tony the Balunguy will be wandering through the park performing magic tricks and making balloon animals.  We'll be offering various arts and crafts projects and children will be able to  plant flowers from Shenk's Greenhouse.  We'll be serving a picnic dinner from Freeze & Frizz and dessert from Couture Cupcakes, so bring your appetites!  We'll continue to announce activities as the event date approaches, so be sure to check out www.sweetpeaproject.org/picnic for more.

The idea for the Sweet Pea Sisters & Brothers Picnic came about after Beth Gauthier and Nicole Jackson joined the board of directors in 2010. Both had older children who grieved along side of them when their sons were stillborn and each have had another baby since then. Though support groups exist for parents, very little is offered for children. Sweet Pea Project is excited to be able to reach out to these children through this annual picnic, in honor of Mark and Max.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

March Happenings

Free to the Families of the Sweet Pea Project Community

On Saturday, March 9,at 11 AM  the Fam Fun Fest Series at the Ware Center in downtown Lancaster, PA will feature a delightful bilingual musical by the celebrated Pushcart Players.  The play, entitled "Cuentos del Arbol" (Tree Tales) draws on Spanish and Latin American folklore with plenty of song and dance.   The hour-long show begins at 11 a.m. but the doors open an hour earlier for creative hands-on activities for kids!

The centerpiece of all the stories in this family-friendly event is a tree that has sheltered, shielded and nurtured countless characters that have passed her way over the years. The tree's caretaker, Arbolita, shares four of these stories with Tomas, a storyteller who is looking for tales for his collection.  These stories from Spain, Mexico and Puerto Rico, are told with a lively Latino beat - both in English and Spanish, and are universal in appeal.

To reserve your free tickets, please contact Barry at barry.kornhauser@millersville.edu and be sure to mention Sweet Pea Project!

AND don't forget, this Saturday, March 9, Beth Gauthier and Stephanie Cole will be heading to the Ware Center at Millersville University's 42 North Prince Street, Lancaster, location to represent Sweet Pea Project and bereaved mothers everywhere at the International Women's Day Celebration Event.  The event is free and offers a morning filled with inspiring & engaging speakers who will share about the work they are doing here in Lancaster and around the world to positively impact the lives of women. There will be speakers, breakout sessions with Q& A time, and a room filled with organizations working on behalf of women worldwide where you can purchase fair trade items such as jewelry, clothing, purses and more!  Sweet Pea Project will be handing out information as we work to educate the public about this important women's issue, and we'll be collecting donations of blankets and monetary contributions.  Please stop by and say hi!  Check out the event's facebook page for more details, www.facebook.com/events/557590290937107/?fref=ts

Also, Weeusables Spring Consignment Event in Lancaster has chosen Sweet Pea Project as their organization to support this year.  Donations will be collected each day of their sale (March 21-23) and we will be receiving all the proceeds of their Stuff-A-Bag event on March 23 from 4pm-5pm.  More info can be found at www.weeusablesevent.com/locations/lancaster

Thank you to everyone who voted for Stephanie Cole to receive the Unity Award.  The winner will be announced at a luncheon in Arizona on March 21st, cross your fingers for Sweet Pea Project!  And look for Stephanie's photograph in the spring issue of MASK the Magazine!

Thanks for all your support.  Hope to see you at one or more of these events this month!