Samuel’s Trees

Dear Friends and Family,
Can you believe that our little Samuel would have been 4 this year? It just doesn’t seem possible! It feels like yesterday we were at CHLA fighting for our precious boy, taking each moment in and never forgetting the time we had.  December is a bittersweet month for us as we are swarmed with so many memories of those 19 days we had with him. We also know that we are blessed that Samuel was born in the same month that we celebrate the birth of our Savior, as we can combine the sweet life of Samuel with the passion of Christ. As we celebrate Christmas, we are so thankful for what Christ has done in our lives, how much he loves us, and how he never  did forsake us throughout our journey with Samuel. He was beyond good, beyond enough, and forever faithful.
Last year, we were able to bless two families with our gift card Christmas trees in honor of Samuel, and this year we are hoping to do four!  Noah’s old preschool wanted to adopt two families, so two trees are already taken care of!  We have always said that we will try to do one more than the previous year, so this is really exciting.  Would you consider donating a gift card to a family at CHLA?  When we had Samuel, it was one of the greatest blessings that we received, and alleviated a lot of worry financially for the simple things.  Our tree was loaded with gift cards and awesome notes, dropped off at the place where people were donating blood, and given to us by a nurse we hardly knew.  Yet it spoke volumes to us about the love of strangers and the provision of God.
Some people last year gave gift cards to Vons (right next door to CHLA), Starbucks, McDonalds, Subway, Quiznos, Baby’s R us, Toys R us,  gas stations, visa gift cards, etc.   If you can, be creative; by by no means feel obligated.  We know how hard this time of year is for many, and we also know how tight budgets can be.  First as always give to the local church, then consider helping out with Samuel’s Trees.
We called the hospital a few days ago and they have given us FOUR potential families: a baby boy who has a heart defect, a baby boy who is on ECMO due to bacterial sepsis, another baby boy who was born with his intestines on the outside, and lastly, another boy who was born at 24 weeks. Most of these babies are going on there 2nd or 3rd month in the hospital!  Due to privacy, the hospital is not allowed to give us names of the families.  There is currently no babies who have a Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia like Samuel, so this is good news, but each family is precious and we can’t wait to share Christ’s amazing love with them.  We know the trees will be a blessing, and also an opportunity to share Christ with them.
We are hoping to collect gift cards by the 17th of December.  Feel free to write a note of encouragement, or your favorite Bible verse, but no pressure!
Thank for all your love and support!  Please send an email to me is you are wanting to be involved ( or respond to this blog.
With Love,
The Parkins

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