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After months of waiting to bring a new life into the world, it’s hard for parents of premature babies to accept that they cannot bring their baby home when they leave the hospital. Having a premature baby is one of the worst nightmares of all the parents. Unfortunately, this is the reality for a lot of families. Marian Gross, 77, resident of Mustang Creek Estates of Frisco, is a mother of four children and her daughter, Michelle, was only 4 pounds 4 ounces when she was born. Gross says those few weeks Michelle stayed in a hospital were some of the hardest weeks of her life, and she cried a lot of tears during that time. Donna Butler, also a resident at Mustang Creek Estates of Frisco, had a very similar experience to Gross. Except, she had two preemies to worry about, since her twins were born early weighing only 5.4 pounds and 5.1 pounds each. After hearing Gross’ and Butler’s stories, the team at Mustang Creek Estates of Frisco decided to show love and support to families of premature babies by handmaking for families when they leave the hospital together for the first time. They recently worked on their first round of blankets, and each resident also wrote a personal note for parents of the preemies.

“When they told me about making blankets for local preemies I got excited because I identified with the mothers, and I can guarantee that it is not easy for anyone,” said Gross. “I would have loved to receive something like that when I was stressing over my babies. I am thankful for the opportunity to show love and support to the local families.”

All blankets are going to preemies from Texas Health Plano Hospital. Butler, 86, is mother of four and she remembers the challenging times when her twins had to stay in a hospital while she went home to rest. At the time, local volunteers knitted hats for preemies like Butler’s twins, and she said it was lovely to know somebody thought of them. Gross and Butler understand the fear and stress that accompanies a pre-term baby, and they can relate to the joy felt when families finally go home with their newborns.  

“I had two children at home and 2 premature babies in a hospital who had to be fed every 4 hours and I ended up having only about an hour in between feeding times,” said Butler. “Those were some crazy times, I tell you. I was so grateful for the local volunteers and the hats they made for my babies. I am glad I had the chance to “return the favor” just to somebody else.”

“Our residents had a wonderful time during the blanket making,” said Candy Jiwa, executive director of Mustang Creek Estates of Frisco. “We always look for ways to give back to the local community and what better way to do so than have our residents participate in a fun and creative activity that put smiles on so many faces.”

Mustang Creek Estates – whose mission is to provide seniors with high-quality residential-style assisted living and memory care at an affordable price – has additional locations in Allen, Burleson and Keller. Recently, Mustang Creek Estates opened its newest senior living community in Sachse.

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