(Feb. 8, 2018) “When you can’t do anything else, you can pray and you can knit,” Brenda Trice, owner of Berlin yarn store A Little Bit Sheepish, said Tuesday.
About a month ago Trice learned her great-nephew, Grayson, was born prematurely at just 24 weeks old during the blizzard on Jan. 4. He is currently at Children’s Hospital in Washington, D.C. in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
“His mom, who is our niece, texted me one day last week and said while Children’s Hospital NICU has plenty of little hats to give to the preemies that are there, they’re running very low on baby blankets,” Trice said. “They had received one when their baby came to be at Children’s Hospital and said how much it meant to them just to have something that was his that they could take home and wash and bring back to him. When they’re in the incubator and there’s so very little that you can do for them, that it really makes them feel good, as crazy as that sounds, just to have that.”
When her niece asked for help, Trice put out a call on Facebook.
“She wondered if we had any knitters that would be willing to knit blankets or crochet blankets that could be donated, because they give the blankets to the families, its not just for them to use while they’re at Children’s Hospital,” she said. “We said absolutely, that we would get our own knitters to buy into the project and hopefully get onboard.”
The post, started on Feb. 2, has reached more than 12,000 people and been shared 168 times, as of Tuesday.
Trice said there is no deadline for people who are willing to make blankets.
“As long as people are willing to send them, we’ll keep doing that,” she said. “I also have a son who works at Children’s in the CICU [Cardiac Intensive Care Unit] and he’s recently made me aware that they do the same thing in their unit, so it’s an ongoing need that they have.
“We’re all about creating community anyway as knitters and crocheters, so it’s just really terrific to see,” Trice added. “Sometimes you feel helpless when these situations happen and it’s something that we can do to help as well.”
Trice said baby Grayson, so far, is “doing really well”
“He’s made it through his first month,” she said. “He was born at 26 weeks, so he wasn’t supposed to show up until April and he’s got a long way to go.
But he’s over two pounds now, he’s made it over several hurdles and they’re really hopeful for a good outcome for him.
“His mom is an ER nurse at PRMC and his dad is an EMT at Wallops Island and for the Town of Salisbury, so they’re good, local folks who are invested in their community and it’s good to just have a way to help out,” Trice added. “We’ve had a great responses. Lots of people have offered to help and the more we can get, the better off.”
There is no size requirement and blankets can be made of any machine-washable fiber. Trice suggests car seat or stroller sizes, “As most of their [hospital] guests are rather diminutive.”
Donations can be dropped off or mailed to A Little Bit Sheepish, 2 South Main Street, Berlin, Maryland, 21811.
The shop is open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, 11 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday.
For more information, visit www.alittlebitsheepish.com, www.facebook.com/pg/ALittleBitSheepish, or call 410-641-1080.