Hazel Altbaum’s name has carried through our wedding & events circle – through Healing Hazel fund raisers, blood drives, donations, and regular updates – for her 2 year struggle with a very aggressive Leukemia. Hazel, Hazey, Hazel Bug, Hazelnut,…the true giggle-monster is now a precious angel.
Words cannot express the sadness & loss that must come from losing a child. We shall commit to continue supporting our friends in their grief and in helping surviving daughter Raya through the loss of her baby sister. Through this, we also respect the incredible gift that comes from knowing such a pure and kind little soul. The child who loved eating sprinkles one-by-one, who relished in buttercream, cheesey mac-n-cheese, and French fries, the child who brought us more of a purpose.
This little Hazel-bug lived as much of her life in Rady’s Children’s Hospital than at home. Nurses, caregivers, and doctors – also touched by this incredible tiny patient and her joyful laugh & strength – joined over 100 friends and family for a Celebration of her life in a beautifully serene garden at Estancia La Jolla.
Eloquently spoken words by friends Bethel Nathan & Rachel Peniche, and by Joanne – one of Rady’s finest caregivers – and even the truest most poignant letter, written by her incredible parents Tim & Lynn and read by dear friend Amanda, held a silent audience in awe…speechless. Many others, including our kitchen, decor, and wedding team, helped as best we could to make the day as perfect in Hazel’s honor as possible, given the circumstances.
Our incredible team at Sweet Cheeks Baking Co. donated their own time (thank you, Lauren!) & product to provide a “Very Hazelicious” display of her favorite treats, featuring Funfetti cupcakes, Rainbow cookies, bowls of Sprinkles (her favorite for noshing), and a beautiful Unicorn Cake (Gjaidan put extra love into this one).
It has been truly inspiring to see the warmth & supportive outreach coming from our tight-knit events industry in a big city like San Diego. We have been proud to donate goodies to all events “Hazel” and monies to the fund-raisers…even blood to the Blood Bank.
If you would like to donate blood to the San Diego Blood Bank for other survivors, please do!
The fund-raisers now continue to help future children in their struggles, thanks to the help of Nicole Matthews & Rachel Peniche: @Heroes for Hazel.
A stunning release of biodegradable balloons (pinks, purples, & yellows, Hazel’s favorite colors) with perfectly fitted music provided by Tim’s company VARIO Productions, captivated us in unison.
Video of balloon release: https://www.facebook.com/elaine.ardizzone/videos/pcb.10212326185886202/10212326181086082/?type=3&theater
For a very beautifully written piece on loss: http://stillstandingmag.com/2016/05/endlessly-i-search-for-you/