Hand to Hold's Official Blog: Written by Parents for Parents

Hand to Hold’s 3rd Annual Baby Shower Luncheon a Success!

hand to hold baby shower 2016

Photo credit: Peary Photography

Thank you for joining us in Oz at Hand to Hold’s Third Annual Baby Shower celebrating the birth of new resources and support programs for NICU and bereaved families!

On Friday, November 4, guests enjoyed a whimsical afternoon at our beautiful Wizard of Oz-themed Baby Shower Luncheon, filled with games, prizes and friends at the beautiful Hyatt Regency Austin. Guest speaker Melanie Shankle graced us with her inspiring and humorous words on the true nature and meaning of friendship. The Mrs. performed a beautiful acoustic song, accompanied by a heartwarming slideshow of preemies past and present. Finally, to close the afternoon, Baby Shower Chair Fayruz Benyousef took the stage to encourage guests to give in support of Hand to Hold’s mission to provide resources and support for NICU families.

hand to hold baby shower 2016

Founder and Executive Director Kelli Kelley. Photo credit: Peary Photography

hand to hold baby shower 2016

The Mrs. performs for the guests. Photo credit Peary Photography.

hand to hold baby shower 2016

Guest speaker Melanie Shankle inspires and entertains with her moving words. Photo credit: Peary Photography.

Our giving thermometer currently stands at $21,336 of our $25,000 goal! If you missed your opportunity to donate or if you would like to help us meet our goal, you can do so by visiting us on BidPal.

hand to hold baby shower 2016 bid pal thermometer

Thanks to you – our sponsors, table hosts, individual donors and planning committee – together we can ensure NICU families have a Hand to Hold during and after a NICU stay or loss.

Hand to Hold has many exciting things coming in 2017 to keep NICU families thriving! Stay in touch with us by visiting www.handtohold.org and following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

More photos of the event, courtesy of Peary Photography:

hand to hold baby shower 2016 bid pal thermometer melanie shankle

Photo credit: Peary Photography

hand to hold baby shower 2016 fayruz benyousef, kelli kelley, melanie shankle

Baby Shower Chair Fayruz Benyousef, Hand to Hold founder and Executive Director Kelli Kelley and special guest speaker Melanie Shankle. Photo credit: Peary Photography

hand to hold baby shower 2016

Our Decor Committee knocked it out of the park with their amazing Wizard of Oz inspired decorations. Photo credit Peary Photography.

hand to hold baby shower 2016

Guests listen attentively to speaker Melanie Shankle. Photo credit Peary Photography.

A special thanks to our sponsors:

Red Slipper Sponsor

The Mrs

Lemon Drop Cocktail Hour Sponsor

Over the Rainbow Sponsors

st davids healthcare

Lana Macrum-Craig and Ronda Gray


VIP Meet and Greet Sponsor


Fayruz Benyousef and Malek Ben-Musa Family

Dare to Dream Sponsors

Mays Family Foundation and Linda McCaul

heb logo baby shower

Emerald City Raffle Sponsor

texas fertility center baby shower luncheon

Lollipop Guild Diaper Pull Sponsor

Heather and Patrick Nichols

Blue Bird Sponsors

Austin Fertility Institute/Vivere-Austin Surgery Center
Austin’s First Steps
Austin Maternal Fetal Medicine 
Austin Regional Clinic
Carolyn and Dave Bartelli
Cook-Walden Funeral Homes & Cemeteries
Donald D. Mateer Foundation 
Doss Ladies Who Lunch
Meridian Wealth Advisors/Emily and Josh Galatzan
Haegelin Construction
Kelli and Michael Kelley
Rare Trends
Roger Beasley Mazda

Thank you again for ensuring a bright future for NICU families.

Leigh Ann Torres About Leigh Ann Torres

Online Community Coordinator, Preemie Babies 101 Lead Blogger - Leigh Ann Torres is a freelance writer, blogger and mother of three living in Austin, TX. After a short and sudden bout with severe preeclampsia, Leigh Ann’s identical twin girls were delivered at 31 weeks, spending 38 mostly uneventful days in the NICU. Two years later the Torres family welcomed another baby, this time at term, with only a mild case of preeclampsia. Leigh Ann currently runs Hand to Hold’s official blog and social media channels. When she’s not doing laundry or fulfilling requests for snacks, she usually has her nose stuck in a book. You can keep in touch with Leigh Ann on Twitter or via email.

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