Spring Soul Retreat Fundraiser - 2018

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Friday May 25th was a HUGE day for us. We held our first ever women's retreat fundraiser.  The idea came from our board member Jacquie. She attended an event similar to this and loved it so much that she suggested we host our own. What a great idea it was. So Melissa and Billie took the idea and ran with it. With only about 6 weeks to plan and get everything ready there was a lot of hard work ahead of us. Good thing we had some amazing people helping.  We have so many people to thank that made this evening possible and a huge success. A very special thank you to our friends and family who sold tickets, donated, collected auction items, sold raffle tickets, worked the door, help with the silent auction, ran around picking up last min things, bringing us food or drinks, arriving early to clean up and stayed so late to clean up, way past the tine we expected them to stay.  We could not have done this with out you all!  You know who you are!  AND especially to EVERYONE who bought tickets, came out and showed us your support by just being there, whether you bought anything at all, just having your presence there was more then meaningful to both of us!  

Here are the people and businesses who made this night possible and as wonderful as it was!



PURE Botanicals 
Label 25
Melissa DePape Photography 
Davids Tea
Family Connections Inc.


Tiffany Sparrow - You graced us with your beautiful voice and patience while we got the microphone problem fixed.  It was a pleasure and an honour to have you perform, you were amazing.
Kena León - Your presence was felt and appreciated.  You wowed us all with your voice and your ability steal the show.  Thank you so much for your support we look forward to having you come back and sing for us again.
Shakti Flow - The story you tell through your movements and dance is captivating.  Thank you for coming last minute to rescue us when we had a last minute cancellation. We were so please that you came and truly showed up.
InnerVerse Connect - Charlene, you arrived at the perfect time.  You came in with a bright light about you and contagious energy.  You took the stage and made the us all feel energized and beautiful.  Thank you for coming out and showing us what a little movement can do for your soul.


Tarot Card Reading - Christoffe was well received with his gift of tarot card reading.  He was so popular and had so many people sign up for a reading, that he stayed late to make sure everyone received their reading.  He also donated all his time to the Charity.  Thank you for coming it was great to have a little masculine energy among all the women. 

Dakota Moon Reiki & Crystal Holistics - Charlene came out and offered a Crystals 101 class and introduction to crystals and crystal grids.  Each client that came to see her picked a special crystal for them to take to take home.  Thank you Charlene for arriving early and staying late your love and energy was was appreciated.

Alberta College of Massage Therapy - We had 4 practicum students come and donate all their time and talent to us. We had amazing reviews from the attendees,  all of these ladies will do amazing in their new career! We wish them nothing but the best!

Feel Fabulous Mobile Spa - We had the lovely Mirielle come out and give our ladies mini manicures!  Thank you for coming out and pampering some of us! We loved the service.

YogaPath Wellness - Michelle Dionne and her crew of ladies came out and donated their time doing a special hand treatment called AROMATOUCH.  They used quality DoTerra oils and lots of knowledge.  Thank you ladies!

Essentially Balanced - Kristie joined us and offered Aromatherapy Massages.  These were so well received and she booked up pretty quickly!  Thank you so much for coming out.

Reflexology and Wellness Studio Edmonton - When your feet are walked on everyday and they are strained and tired Sarah will work magic on them... well reflexology magic!  Sarah booked up and sold out before the night was half over!  We heard nothing but amazing things about her skills.  Thank you Sarah, we might have to clone you for next year.

Henna - We had two henna artists who do not have business websites or FB profiles!  Thank you Izza and Nilufar.  Izza donated her time and talent. Thank you both for coming out and sharing this beautiful art with us.

Infinite Mist Readings by Sandra - We were blessed to have Sandra there helping guide some of our attendees.  Thank you for coming out and sharing your gift with us.

Welcome OM - Thank you Jennie for moving flights so you could attend.  We appreciate the commitment you gave us and to all our attendees.  We hope your next engagement was wonderful and we look forward to having you for next time!

InSentives By Design - Robin Cahill came out and had a table filled with her amazing designs. Using all natural crystals and stones. All of her jewelry is made using lava stones, so it’s diffuser jewelry so you can use your favorite essential oil.


We were so lucky to have an amazing Raffle Prize!  A 7 night stay in Mexico.  SAY WHAT??? YES!!!  Melissa's dear friend owns an amazing Scuba School Resort in Cozumel, Mexico.  BLUE ANGEL RESORT  is a small quiet resort with a beautiful view, delicious food, live entertainment, and the staff is also AMAZING.  We were excited to gift this prize to Janet Tancsics!  Congrats, we hope you have an amazing holiday.  It is the only place in Mexico Melissa will stay.

Weir Concepts Inc. $1000.00


Vanessa Brill - Tupperware Kit
Time Out Beauty Retreat & DJR Custom Builders - $400 Gift Card for Time out Beauty Spa
Jenny's Beauty Room - Lipsence Lip Collection
Edmonton International Airport (Chelsey Quirk) - Airport VIP Experience
Simple Country Co. - Macrame Plant Hangers
GoodFellas Ink - $100 gift Certificate and a Sweater
Don McMann - Ladies Drawing Night
Modern Gravity - Three Floats
MC Collage - Spa Getaway
Pandora Kingsway - Pandora Necklace and Earrings & Rose Gold Charm bracelet and Rose Gold Charm
Jacquie Dzioba - Michael Kors Rose Gold Purse and Wallet ,  Michaels Kors black leather fanny pack, Rae Dunn Flower Pots
Team Builder Sales - Tupperware Meal Prep
A Very Nice Greenhouse - Hanging basket
Cannor Nursery - $100 Gift Certificate & a succulent Planter
Rebecca King Fashion House - Designer Dress by Rebecca King
Saje Wellness (Kingsway) - Merchandise Valued over $125
Labronze Tan - Tanning Package
InSentives By Design - Bracelet and Earrings


Tim Hortons - Chad Jenkins ( St. Albert and Morinville ) 
DAVIDs TEA (Kingsway)
Sherbrooke Community Hall
Sandwich & Sons
Mercato Foods Italian Bakery  
Jenny from Jenny's Beauty Room  and HOTDAME who donated all her time to serve us drinks! She was amazing and always made sure Billie and Melissa were taken care of, as well as our guests!


A huge thank you to the lovely Susan Ozirney from Inside Edge Designs who donated all the linens that pulled our decor together. Thank you so much Susan!

A big thank you to Melissa's husband, Corey, who built our cool light standing tables. When we started to plan this, we both agreed we needed to have the tables, we had a vision. We left it up to Corey to pull this one off.  

Adorning our tables were Liliacs donated by Jacquie and Jacquie's Dad (John), and Family Connections. The flowers were arranged by Charmed Floral in St.Albert.  Honestly these ladies worked all day to have them done for the next morning, they did amazing.  Thank you so much they were stunning and made great door prizes.  

Our beautiful photo stand, which held hundreds of our tiny lights photos, and rustic frame for our event banner was made and donated by Billie Depatie Designs.


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We had a lot of compliments on the Lilac Blackberry Lemonade.  We had seen Jillian Harris post this speciality drink on here Instagram, and we knew it would be perfect.  Our main table centre pieces were lilacs, and lilacs represent spring, also The Tiny Light Foundation's signature colour is Purple. Taking Jillian's recipe and multiplying that so we had enough for over 100 people was hard.  We squeezed over 60 lemons, and used over 10 cups of organic cane sugar to make the simple Lilac Syrup. After many attempts, we ultimately decided to blend the blackberries, strain them, then add it to our simple syrup.  The lemonade had to be made more tart so when the syrup was added it wasn't too sweet.  We used Vodka as the spike in place of Gin.  All in all people loved it and it will definitely be our Spring Soul Retreats specialty drink for years to come.  Thank you Jillian!


This fundraiser made it possible for our charity to not only continue our work, but it has also allowed us to start the planning of a new program.  We want to make sure that no family misses the opportunity to get photographs of their family’s last moments together. We have raised enough money to get help putting together a program that will allow us to reach out to some bigger sponsors. With the goal that we can provide at the organizations, hospitals, and hospices with the right equipment and knowledge to capture memories of families and their beautiful children seen in the form of photographs, when we cannot get there in time.

With your help and generosity, this dream of ours is well on it’s way to coming true.   


In conclusion this event was fabulous! We weren't sure how things would flow, but the response we got squashed our doubts and worries. The room was filled with good energy and wonderful people! The people we both met for the first time were just simply amazing souls, along with faces we already knew and loved. We were overwhelmed with gratitude for the people that we met and that took time out of their lives to make this event spectacular! And again we can’t even begin to thank everyone that came out to support us, your support means more then you know! We will definitely be planning it for next year! Bigger and better!! 

Melissa & Billie
and the Tiny Light Foundation team!


Below are some photos of the evening! Enjoy!

Second Annual Online Photographers Auction

Today is the day we launch our Second Annual Online Photographers Auction.  We have some AMAZING sponsors that we are so thrilled to have a part of this annual event.  

There are a few things you need to know before you start bidding.

1. This auction is open to everyone, photographer or not.  All items are geared toward the photographer hobbyist and Pro.  

2. All higher valued items do have a reserve bid so be aware.  

3. We suggest watching an item your interested in, by placing your email in the proper spot.  We have shared this auction with thousands of people.  And if it is anything like last year we know there will be some bidding wars.

4. Shipping: Please be aware that not all items include shipping. If they do include shipping it will be stated in the description. Some vendors that did include the shipping will ship to Canada as well as the United States, BUT there could be an extra cost to ship to Canada. 
Borrowed Lenses DOES NOT ship to Canada at all, so that item is for US bidders only ( which is stated in the description ).

5. We had to host it on a private website, as our website would not host the program we had purchased.  So please be aware you are in the right spot when you follow the link. 

6. We have over 50 items so be sure to scroll down and so you can check all our awesome stuff out.  And BID BID BID.

7. If you happen to bid above the Fair Market Value posted by 30% you are eligible for a tax detectable receipt for the amount bid above the value.  IE: If the item you won was valued at $100 and your winning bid was $130.  You will receive a tax deductible receipt for $30.00.  If you have any questions please let us know info@thetinylight.com.

8. All monies Raised will be put towards Medical Professional Packages.  These packages will include things like posters, pamphlets, business cards, displays etc.   We will be mailing these packages to Children's Hospitals, Palliative Care Centers, and Children's Hospices across Canada.  Our hope is that no family will go without memories of their beautiful, inspiring Tiny Light.  

We want to Thank You for 'Helping Our Tiny Lights Shine One Photo at a Time'.

Please read the description on each item you bid on carefully, so you fully understand what you are bidding, what is included and what is extra. After the item is won, The Tiny Light Foundation and the vendor is not responsible for anything that was misunderstood by the bidder, as all information needed is stated in the item description.

If you have ANY questions regarding an item please email us at info@thetinylight.com


To access the Auction Please CLICK HERE.

Below are all our amazing Sponsors.

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Video Premier | The Tiny Light Foundation

This is something we have been so excited to share and we have been wanting to share it for awhile. We have beening waiting for the perfect time.  It seems as though it has been leaked and so no better time then the present.

Please take the time to watch, love and share.  The kids worked so hard and were so patient with the process.  It was an amazing day that we are extremely proud of.

We have so many amazing people to thank.
PMD Digital Media - Producer/Director/Editor
Cory Woodward - Artist/Singer, song writer

Kaitlynn - Directors Assistant intro voice over
Corey DePape - Set Assistants

Tiny Light Cast:
Parents & Grandparents

Kim Mallory Studios - Studio Space
Photo Express Foto Source - Donation of all the prints

Some photos behind the scenes!

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Edmonton Tiny Light Fundraiser November 2012

On November 27, 2012 we hosted our 2nd annual Edmonton fundraiser.  This year it took place at O2 Joe's Tap House and Grill.  The location was great and the food was even better.  The auction items were awesome.  We heard from a regular to O2 customer "This is the best silent auction I have ever been too".

We had some amazing items from some amazing vendors.
Boonstock Music Festival
Capturing Couture
CISN Country 103.9
M&K Candy Buffet
Ace High Roofing
Stewart's Tire Shop
Christy Wells Photography
Citadel Theatre
D4 Photography
Zin Frames
Soul Essence Wholistic Therapy
Pointe West Honda 
Epicure - Brandy Keenleyside
Missy Ruby Sue Accessories
As I see It Images
Szechuan Paramount Group
4M Blankets & Bags
Snap On - Aaron Matheson
Jacek Chocolate Couture
Christine Bezanson Photography
Evie Rose Photography

And some amazing people who donated items too!
Patti Biwer
Diane Troman
Vern Domsky
Billie Depatie
Jacquie Dzioba
Grandma Dzioba
Maureen DePape
Rachel Domsky
Yvonne Cyr
Shannon Lindenberg
Vanessa Ebel
Sarah Whitford
Amanda Marshall
Sherri Abrams
Sam Jalal
Sharon & Aaron Cartier
Penny Pawlechko
Brendon Guenette
Patrick Depatie
Amy DePape
And many other unamed people......

We had so many items that we had to have sections. We had supportive bidders and there was definitely some competitive bidding.  We can not thank everyone enough for coming out and attending this event.  Our families, friends, photographer, and all the regulars at Joe's, you all have made this event a huge success.  We were very close to meeting our goal this year.  All the money goes directly to the Foundation.  We have already put the funds to good use by upgrading our shipping packaging for prints, cleared our account with our charity lawyer, partial payment to our trademark lawyer. And we were able to supply our offices with ink, stamps, labels etc.  We have enough money put away to help get us through a portion of this year, with the simple costs it takes to run an organization of our size.

All images were taken by our amazing photographer volunteer Christy Wells from Christy Wells Photography.  Thank you so much Christy for coming out and attending this event and for taking some beautiful behind the scenes photos.

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The Founders, Melissa and Billie

The Founders, Melissa and Billie

Tiny Light Family and Photographer Picnic

Just over two weeks ago we hosted our first family and photographer picnic.  The day was amazing the sun met us nice and early while we set up, and stayed with us all day.  Not only did we have perfect weather we were met with such great company.  Families came from all over the Lower mainland and Fraser Valley.

It was so great to meet all these tiny lights that we have come to know through photographs and stories.  As well as the people who help us captures these moments.  Spending the better part of the morning with these children was so rewarding. 

Without the help of so many great people this event would not have been so perfect. 

Awesome Vancouver Canucks Ticket Give Away!!

Vancouver Canucks Tickets up for grabs! Value of over $500.00
Vancouver vs. Los Angeles Kings
March 26, 2012
7:00pm Game time
Want to know how to enter?
You can enter to win by leaving a comment on our blog post!
For additional entries do the following. (Be sure to leave a separate comment for each task you complete)
  • Like our Facebook Fan Page
  • Tweet about this give away #TheTinyLight
  • Write this in your status " @The Tiny Light Foundation is giving away 2 tickets to the Vancouver Canucks game! Check it out http://tiny.cc/canuckstickets (be sure we are tagged)
Get up to 4 entires!
A huge thank you goes out to Westminster Saving in Maple Ridge.

Contest Ends Monday March 19, 2012 at 8:00pm MST
Winner will be announced by 12:00am MST


Guest Blog - Tiny Light Mom Kristi

Living with a Tiny Light.

Hearing the news for the first time, that your son or daughter has something “wrong” with them is life changing for families of children with disabilities.  Every dream, hope and vision you had for them suddenly changes to fear, anxiety and unfailing worry.  You wonder what the future holds for them, if they will suffer and how, as a family unit, you will cope. 

It took us a long time to understand how to move forward once we learned of our son’s diagnosis.  In December of 2009 (Ben was sixteen months old) we were told of his condition while staying at The Stollery Children’s Hospital for nutrition related concerns.  Ponti-Cerebellar Hypoplasia Type 3, his diagnosis, is so rare that he is only one of five confirmed cases.  In the entire world.  You have a greater chance of winning the lottery than having a child like Ben (approximately six times over!).  To us, Ben’s diagnosis was not overly surprising but with such a small number of people having it, the information on PCH is nearly non-existent causing serious frustration.  The biggest question was not how did this happen but instead, where do we go from here?

First, we grieved.  We considered everything that Benjamin would not do (he experiences major global delay).   He will never play football with his daddy, he will never get married, he will never have kids of his own… the list goes on.

And we cried and screamed and yelled and… we blamed.

But then, with time, we got over it; our family has not looked back since.  Once we accepted all that he wouldn’t be able to do, we were able to focus more clearly on what he could do and what he will do.

For example, Ben CAN take some foods orally, push his arms out of his sleeves when getting dressed, help move his arms out of the straps from his car-seat, say Mom, Dad and no, he can identify when he is hungry, show when he’s happy and when he’s not, he can anticipate, give a high-five, put his head under the shower stream, get himself out of his chair, push a ball, commando crawl, and recognize his favorite things and people.  To name just a few.  He continues to fight the barriers working against him; he is such an inspiration to all of us.

I admit that some days are extremely hard and I need additional support; as much as I consider our family normal, there are many days that I need to remind myself that our living situation is not typical.  That Ben does require “extra” care.  And that I (we) need to take the time to be the best parents and individuals we can be, not just for Ben, but for all our children.  As with all kids, things that worked yesterday may not work tomorrow and so we are constantly adjusting.

The outlook for Ben was far from positive but he has managed to overcome every obstacle put in his way and has proven that with a little determination, you can beat the odds set against you.  Today, we have a healthy, vibrant, and joyful little boy who brightens our lives and infects everyone he meets with his spirited laugh.


Benjamin and children like him (or completely different, but equally wonderful) are Tiny Lights that show society just how perfect “wrong” can be. With the continuous push for inclusion, understanding and tolerance, we are paving the way for a brighter future for our children.  The Tiny Light Foundation provides families with the opportunity share the best parts of our world and we are extremely grateful they exist; capturing our beautiful children and presenting their stories to the world.   

 :) Kristi

Images Captured by Melissa DePape Photography

A Guest Blog by Tiny Light Miranda

Here is another guest blog, this time from a Tiny Light! Thank you Miranda!

If you would like to do a guest blog for us please email angela@thetinylight.com

I first read about the Tiny Light Foundation in our local paper. I like to read (or flip through) the paper so I know what’s going on in my community, but I don’t usually read the whole thing, only the stories that catch my eye. The one about the Tiny Light Foundation caught my eye and it was one of the stories that I really enjoyed reading. For a few days after reading it, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I wanted to help out but I didn’t know how. I figured the least I could do is tell people about it. Then I remembered my mom works for a pediatrician; she probably sees kids all the time who would be wonderful candidates for this. So, after some searching, I found the paper in the recycling and read the story again, this time making note of the website and email address. I sent an email asking for a brochure or something that I can print for my mom to show the patients and explained that I’ve been through quite a bit medically so I know what it’s like for some of these families and I know how much something like this would mean to them. I got an email back from Melissa with a printable pamphlet and she told me she thought I would be a wonderful candidate for the Tiny Light Foundation as well. I had never actually thought of applying until she said that. After she mentioned it, I thought that would be so cool and applied.

I have had ten surgeries to lengthen and straighten my leg because I was born with a posteromedial bow in my tibia and fibula. This means that my lower left leg was bowed outwards and grows at a much slower rate than my other leg. After ten surgeries, we have lengthened my leg a total of almost 3 inches and it is pretty much straight. My legs are now the same length and I don’t have any pain. Other than the problem with my leg, I have a bunch of different things going on: familial hypercholesterolemia, I’ve had a kidney stone (VERY painful!!) because of a problem I had with my kidneys, I have scoliosis with pectus excavatum, and one of the valves in my heart, the mitral valve, is slightly stretched/floppy and causes the blood to flow backwards in my heart. Also, for a year and a half I was really sick. I had so many tests done and saw a bunch of different doctors but nobody could figure out what was going on. My problems just kept getting worse yet we couldn’t figure out exactly what was causing them. Thanks to a trip to the ER in the middle of the night, my mom doing some research, and finally a doctor who was determined to find out what was going on, we found out that my gall bladder isn’t functioning at all. Right now that is all we know. I’m taking a medication that’s helping, I just saw a new specialist, and I am waiting for an ERCP to see what’s going on and we will go from there. To add to it all, I have also recently started getting really bad migraines. We always wonder why I have all of these problems, so that is why I am waiting for an appointment with genetics to see if it is all related in some way.

Only a few days after I sent my story into the Tiny Light Foundation, we got a call from Jenn of Jenn Di Spirito Photography. It was very exciting! I had told my mom about the Tiny Light Foundation and that I was going to apply but forgot to tell her that I had applied so it was a nice surprise for her! I have a younger brother and sister and when I was only five years old, my brother only three, and my sister just two, our dad passed away from a heart attack. He was young, healthy, and active, so it was quite unexpected. My mom has been raising us by herself since then and she’s amazing. She is always there for me; whenever I’m in the hospital, she takes time of work and makes sure she’s there and she takes time off to take me to all the appointments and tests. So between taking time off, the different medications that I’ve had to take, and driving out to all the doctors all the time, it has cost a lot of money and keeps us quite busy. Our last family picture was probably at least five years ago, if not more, and I think we had it done at the superstore. So the pictures that the Tiny Light Foundation has provided us with mean so much to our whole family. If it weren’t for the amazing things that they do, we probably would not have such amazing pictures. 

It took a while to set up our session because of our busy schedule and the not so great weather but when we did, we had a great time! We had to change locations because we were literally swarmed by mosquitoes trying to eat us alive (not kidding… I have not seen so many mosquitoes in my life). After we went somewhere else, we had lots of fun with Jenn and she got absolutely amazing pictures! Thank you so much to everyone at the Tiny Light Foundation!! And to all the Tiny Light families - thank you for sharing your stories, you are all so very inspiring!

Lots of love, Miranda Tymoschuk

P.S. If you would like to follow how I’m doing and what I’m up to (I do a lot of fundraising) you can check out my blog at 
www.ilaughlovedream.blogspot.com. In March I will be off to Kenya to help build a school. All my doctors have given me the okay to go, I’ve finished fundraising over $5000 for it, and I’m signed up! Now I just have to count down the days!!

Tiny Light Guest Blog By Eiko

Thank you to our amazing Tiny Light Photographer, Eiko for her guest blog and for all of her Tiny Light work! If you would like to do a guest blog for us, please email angela@thetinylight.com

A Guest Blog by Tiny Light Photographer Eiko

Browsing online one day I happen to run across some information about the Tiny Light Foundation. It struck such a cord with me that I felt compelled to apply immediately. Prior to starting my photography business I had spent over 10 years working with children and young adults with special needs. Already hoping to combine my passion with photography with this other piece of my life, I was delighted when I received a email welcoming me to the Tiny Light Team! To date I've completed four Tiny Light sessions for families in the Medicine Hat area and have met some wonderful families, amazing children and a few friends along the way.

My last Tiny Light was the incredibly sweet Julian! This little man stole my heart the minute I laid eyes on him with his handsome curls and bright smile :) When Julian was just over a week old he went in heart failure (cardio myapathy) without going into to many details this incredibly brave single mother saw her son through a stroke and then a heart transplant.

I had so much fun on this session. We had met a few days prior to the photo session and after emailing and chatting on the phone we immediately hit it off. Julian gave me tons of smiles as we discussed his history, personality and ideas for their session. Being a fun and younger mom, and because I tend to stray away from the traditional images we planned a more edgy session downtown. The day of the session we met up, played and chatted a bit. As soon as I started snapping away Julian strayed away from the wall and took steps towards me....When I had met him only days before our session he was only walking holding onto the wall or furniture totally an awesome moment! Spending our time downtown Medicine Hat I kept the session very casual and fun and was able to create a relaxed atmosphere which in turn meant for some great images showing the love these two have for one another as well as lots of personality. With all that they have gone through together Julian and Jeannine are both doing great and he's progressing amazingly!

I cannot thank the team of hardworking Tiny Light ladies that keep everything going behind the scenes on their own time and especially all the amazing Tiny Lights Ive had the pleasure of meeting!! Looking forward to many more!


Amazing people, Amazing day

A few weeks ago I received a call from Aaron McArthur from Global BC evening news.  Most people don't know yet but The McArther's are one of our Tiny Light families.  One of our amazing photographers BrandOne Studio did his family's photos.  Their story is to come!

We were very excited to have the opportunity to sit down with Global at VanDusen Garden to show how Tiny Light stories are brought to life from a few different angles!  One of our Tiny Light families came out.  What a great family!  After a morning of cameras, talking, and hugging... they went off to children's for neurologist appointments.  I am sure they had a very long day.

 Opening shot for the video!!

 Aaron picked up a bee!!  Evan loved that!

Yes Gabi put everyone to work!  Good Job Aaron. I believe she said you were hired!

Twitter photo break!

Our amazing photographer Gabi Moeller also told her story and why she loves this so much... xo Gabi!

Then it was my turn!  I was excited to sit down and talk about one of my true joys,  The Tiny Light Foundation!

They also told me to have my camera beside me... but they didn't think I would use it just as the interview started... Kinda caught them off guard.

Great Team! The Porter, I mean reporter and his camera guy!

Thank you to Global for bringing awareness to The Tiny Light Foundation, our families, and our photographers.  Thank you to Ani, Raymond, Anthony, and Evan.  You guys are so strong and it was a pleasure to meet you!  Your boys are both sweet angels.  Thank you Gabi Moeller Photography, your ability to make everyone smile in front and behind the camera is something we strive to find in a photographer.  We are so glad to have you on our team!  And I hope you win the lotto ;)

We all had an Amazing day with some Amazing people!  To watch the video click here.


Could not have done it with YOU!!

As most of you know we had our very first fundraiser a few weeks back.  We wanted to post a huge thanks to everyone who attended, donated, collected donations, helped set up, helped take down, etc.
We could not have done it with out any of you!



The Tiny Light Team

Fundraiser 2011

As the building filled Saturday July 16, 2011,  we knew all our hard work would pay off and we would have a very fun, successful evening.

The week leading up to the fundraiser was busier then anyone thought it would ever be. We worked day and night organizing the over 70 items that came in for donations for the silent auction.

By friday night we were both completely exhausted and our nerve's were shot.  We were so anxious and ready for the evening to come.

Setting up all our items proved to be a difficult task, we were so lucky to have people there helping out, and making sure everything was together.  And as people arrived they brought gifts, more auction items, cash donations, and very full wallets!

 We organized 5 sections each named after a local Tiny Light, each section ended at a special time.  Each table in the bar had a story and photo for the patrons to read and understand what we really do at The Tiny Light Foundation. 

As our first section closed we knew right away what kind of night we were in for. It was busy!  And the money kept pouring in.

The evening was so busy and Billie and I worked so hard.  The photobooth we worked so hard at, didn't end up opening until the silent auction closed but once it did open it was a lot of fun!Seriously looking at these phots, it kills us that we weren't able to open it for everyone.

Our very own Colette! Seriously everytime we look at this we can't stop laughing!!

Thanks to everyone who helped!  We had people selling tickets, collecting items and cash donations, we had people running from here to there, organizing, setting up, taking down.  The night was such an amazing success only because of all the people that helped, attended and opened their hearts and wallets!! We sold well over 110 tickets and made well over our goal amount!

We are excited to start planning our next fundraiser!!  Keep your eyes and ears open!!

We leave with some shots two of our lovely photographers who attended had taken for us.

Much love to everyone who supported us and helped us make this evening such a huge success.

~ Melissa, Billie, Jacquie and Colette
and our girl back home in BC who couldn't make it out, Angela :)

Another Tiny Light Guest Blog!

Our 2 yr old daughter has global delays from a rare genetic disorder and we've tried CME and the Anat Baniel Method (ABM). I really, really, really like ABM. It's gentle and she loves the sessions. You can just see her little face light up and pay attention to what the therapist is doing, like you can SEE her learning about her body as the therapist does her thing. And we've seen immediate results too, which are almost unbelievable if I wasn't in the same room watching the whole thing happen.

Anyways... we've traveled very long distances to get this therapy and spent a lot of money, so I've put together a 4 day block of sessions in Summerland BC this summer. Here's the info if interested...

If you know of any families with a child with special needs in the Okanagan area please pass this on…

I will be hosting an ABM therapist at my mom’s house in Summerland BC Aug 13-16 and am looking for families interested in hourly sessions.

We've traveled to Toronto and Edmonton for this therapy and I knew from the first lesson, that it was all worth it. Our 2 year old daughter, Sarah, has changed so much with each session. We’ve seen immediate and lasting improvements in her balance, coordination and cognitive abilities.

The Anat Baniel Method (ABM) uses gentle, innovative techniques to help the brain form new neural connections and patterns that take the child beyond their current limitations. While it is a process, the changes begin happening right away and are often quite dramatic.

For more info on ABM, please visit the link and take a look at the amazing videos (we didn't see quite this dramatic of a change, but I did see changes which lasted right after her first lesson)
http://www.anatbanielmethod.com/help-ch ... erview.htm

If you know of any child with a Genetic Disorder, CP, Developmental Delays, or Autism in the Okanagan area please pass on my email for more info: jenrx99@hotmail.com

Thanks so much!!

My Journey ~ Melissa (founder of TTLF)

If someone would have come to me and said " you would have a special needs Child"  I would have never believed them.  Never in a million years.

Now when I look back I can't picture my life with out Nevaeh.  She is this amazing human being who has this glow and love about her, not because she has downs.  She is like that because that is who she is.  I have had people recommend books, pamphlets, websites and I want nothing but the best for her, but not at the expense of us (as a family) I don't want to know her limitations, or the things she may never do or will do late. I don't want to put so much focus on her disability, but more on her abilities.  Enjoying her being a baby not a baby with DS.  I think some people struggled with that.  I think they thought I was in denial.  And maybe I was a little, but I never forgot the fact that yes she is special, but she is also a baby, a child.  And I have so many years of worry ahead of me, that I am just going to enjoy her for who she is and what she can do.  I am going to give her as much love as I can.  I want to teach her to be strong, to be happy, proud.  To be herself.  I want that for both my girls.  Special needs or not.

Photography is my way of artistically expressing what I see.  I love being able to take a moment in time and looking back on it, remembering.  I often see things, or people.  I think "I want to capture that I want to see this again, just like that."  I want to see the long lashes of my girls from me looking down on them. I want to see everything just as it is.

Before I began blogging I used to think and pictures were worth a thousand words, but I think being able to put words with photos help people understand more what you see.  Gives them a peek into my world and what makes it crazy, happy, special.

Putting my love of children, photos and words all together makes what The Tiny Light Foundation does so amazing.  We let other people see and read what amazing children we have.  It brings a sense of empathy and understanding. It builds a community.

One thing I love that The Tiny Light foundation does is when a child who in every sense looks typical but struggles with everyday things we take for granted. Often that child will be looked at and judged.  People will frown and say "what a bad kid" or "bad parenting".  Some of these stories shine a little light on these kids and their parents who have had labels put on them.  It helps us understand. It helps us empathize.

I am thankful for every child I have had the honour to see and get to know through their photos and stories.  The strength and the will to live and fight is truly the most inspiring thing I have witnessed.  These children and their families are amazing.  Being one of these parents I still read these stories and look at my life and can not help but to be thankful for what I have.  Thankful to brush my girls hair, kiss each little finger, and love them EVERYDAY!

Lately, I can't help but to feel so sad for the Tiny Lights we have lost.  The families who are missing their babies.  And there is nothing I can say or do to make things better. All I can do is work hard everyday to be sure every Tiny Light Application that comes in is handled with care, love, and done so diligently.  I know that sometimes it is hard to take the first step to apply.   You might think you have time, and you might, you probably do.  But never wait to create memories!  Never put it on hold because you child is missing a tooth, or you have a bad hair cut, or because he or she is hooked up to a machine/s,  just do it and do it now. And if your reading this and you do not qualify for a session with us The Tiny Light Foundation.  Please find a photographer in your area (we have a great list) book a session.  I promise it will be the BEST investment you will ever make.  Not only book a session but hang those memories.  Be proud of them. Enjoy them, love them.



Images captured by Page 84 designs

BC Tiny Light Raffle Fundraiser

Our first Tiny Light fundraiser will be July 16th at The Canadian Brew House in Edmonton! We thank everyone that has helped in anyway, from buying tickets to donating silent auction items. It's going to be a great night! For more information please contact us or see our Facebook page.

We also thank everyone who has given the Tiny Light Foundation financial support through purchasing our song by Cory Woodward. If you haven't heard or purchased this beautiful song, you can do so here:

We are now announcing another great opportunity for Tiny Light fans, families and friends to help out with fundraising! We have two fabulous baskets to raffle! Tickets will be $2 for one ticket or three tickets for $5. So buy LOTS! Chances of winning are great and the baskets are amazing!

Ladies Burberry The Beat & Clarins Basket:
Approximate Value $432+

Burberry The Beat Eau de Parfum 75ml $98
Burberry The Beat Ladies Shirt (Small) $20+
Burberry The Beat Journal $15+
Burberry The Beat Body Lotion 150ml $46
Burberry Women's Sunglasses $100+
Burberry External IPod Speakers $26
Clarins Alcohol Free Toner with Chamomile 200ml $33
Clarins Body Sculpting Cream 200ml $68
Clarins Body Sculpting Cream 75ml $26
Also... Various Burberry Samples

Men's Porsche Design The Essence and Nickel Paris Basket:
Approximate Value $359+

Porsche Design The Essence Eau de Toilette Vapo/Spray 80ml $85
Porsche Design The Essence Shower Gel 200ml $34
Porsche Design The Essence Lotion/After Shave 80ml $54
Porsche Design The Essence Deo Stick 75ml $26
Porsche Design Logo Notebook $15+
Porsche Design Logo Pencil $1+
Nickel Paris for Men Super Clean Scrub 125ml $26
Nickel Paris for Men Silicone Valley Wrinkle Equalizer 50ml $78
Nickel Paris for Men Morning After Rescue Gel 75ml $40

The draw will be made July 8. I can deliver the baskets to the winners anywhere between Chilliwack and Vancouver. Please email angela@thetinylight.com or call 604 4660364 to set up payment for tickets! I will need to know your name, phone number and location and which baskets you would like tickets for. 

Please buy lots, as this is (as you all know) a great cause! Thank you for your support! 

Thank you for your continued support. 

BC Gaming License: 35274

Words From a Guest Blogger, Tiny Light Mom, Nicola

We wish to thank another one of our Tiny Light Moms for sharing her words as a Guest Blogger. Nicola's family's story and photos will be featured soon, so please keep an eye on our website to see more! If you would like to be a Tiny Light Guest Blogger and share your Tiny Light experience, please email angela@thetinylight.com

Thank you to all of the wonderful people that have already shared!

When I first heard about the Tiny Light Foundation it was through a friend who had “liked” their page on Facebook.  I read about the Foundation and couldn’t believe that photographers were actually willing to donate their time to give families such wonderful memories.  I am the mother of 2 “Tiny Lights”, although one of them is not so tiny – Matt is 18 and has a diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy. Our second “Tiny Light”, Caleb, is 5 and has Autism and in between these two special boys we have been blessed with a beautiful daughter, Jayden, who is 7 and was a long awaited gift from God (11 years of waiting to be exact).

We all know photography can be expensive, but that coupled with the patience and time required to photograph children with some sort of challenge makes it almost impossible for some.  Two years ago we tried to do a family photo session with my husband’s family and it was very stressful, to say the least.  Caleb, our youngest son was just going through assessments for Autism at that time.  We did get a wonderful family picture, but that was only through the magic of photo-shop.  Our photographer at the time was able to snap some pictures of Caleb playing on his own around some columns and she photo-shopped him into our family picture.  As beautiful as that family picture is, I still look at it and know that Caleb wasn’t truly in that shot.  So, when I heard of this amazing foundation I thought I would send our story and apply for a session.  When I found out we were going to have this amazing opportunity I was thrilled.  

Our Tiny Light photographer, Oliver Rathonyi – Reusz of In View Images was nothing short of amazing.  He suggested an outdoor shoot as Caleb loves to be outdoors, but this proved to be a bit challenging because of our wet BC weather this year.  Between the weather and our busy family schedule it took a while for the shoot to actually happen; but it did it was well worth the wait.  The day was sunny and slightly cloudy but warm enough for us to be outdoors without our jackets.  Oliver made us all feel so comfortable, we chatted about our family, his family and the kids took to him straight away.  He was patient and understanding and took the time to work with us all in, what was to the kids, a fun day at the park not the work of a family photo shoot. The images he captured truly captured the essence of our family. We are thankful beyond words for the blessings of that day.  

Melissa and Billie, while we have never met, we are so thankful for the vision you have to give families who are enduring sometimes extreme hardships this very special gift. To all of the Tiny Light photographers, and we see this number growing every day, thank you so much for your dedication to this wonderful Foundation and the many families you are touching.  Your gift is a gift that will last a lifetime.  To the other Tiny Light families, we are connected by difficult circumstances, yet each story is touching the lives of every person who reads these heart-warming stories and sees the beautiful pictures of each of these very special gifts from God, these Tiny Lights.  

Thank you just doesn’t seem to say enough for all this Foundation is doing to bless families, raise awareness and to put faces to each diagnosis that affects them. My God bless you richly as you endeavour to bless others.

With deepest gratitude,

The Mitchell Family (Nicola, Todd, Matt, Jayden and Caleb)

If you would like to donate to Caleb's Crew and the Walk Now For Autism Speaks Vancouver Event please see the Mitchell Family Fundraising page: http://www.walknowforautismspeaks.ca/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.participant&eventID=509&participantID=3307

Words from a Guest Blogger. Tiny Light Stella's Mom, Anna.

Here is another Guest Blog from one of our amazing Tiny Light Moms! If your family or friend has been part of our Tiny Light journey and you would like to share by being a Guest Blogger for The Tiny Light, please email: angela@thetinylight.com

My name is Anna and I am Stella's mommy. 
It was just a typical evening for me, watching TV and surfing the net.  How I exactly came across The Tiny Light Foundation, I honestly can't remember.  But I do remember reading the foundation's Tiny Light stories.  The photos were beautiful and the stories beautiful, heartwarming and inspiring! I decided that night that I wanted Stella to be a Tiny Light.  I wanted to share her story and our journey as a family.  A few days later I was on facebook chatting with Eiko (photography by Eiko).  I had met Eiko when I was pregnant with Stella as she did our maternity photos.  I knew that she had been wanting to combine her love for photography and her passion for working with people with disabilities.  So I told her about the Tiny Light Foundation but she was one step ahead of me as she had already applied to be a Tiny Light photographer and had been accepted.  I already knew just what an amazing photographer she was, so I was even more excited to send in the application!!

Our photo session was an adventure for sure!  My two older daughters Olivia and Sophie, were not the most co operative, but Eiko was patient and laidback and just let them run around.  What few smiles my little rascals had, she caught with ease and looking at the pictures you'd think they were as sweet as pie!  Stella was pure sweetness the whole time and I loved all the amazing head bands and the cute little outfit that Eiko brought for Stella to wear on the photoshoot.  When I saw the photos for the first time I cried (just a little :) ).  Eiko has a gift. She captured the love that we all have for Stella with the click of her camera!! The photos of Stella showed her sweetness, her patience, her perfection.  Words can't properly express how much we love and cherish those photos.  Eiko is a wonderful person and a talented photographer.

After seeing Stella's story on the Tiny Light facebook page I felt inspired.  I wanted to give back, to do more, to pay it forward.  Stella was Eiko's first Tiny Light and I felt compelled to get the word out there in our community about The Tiny Light Foundation.  So I called a friend of mine who works at our local radio station and she organized an interview on the two local radio stations (Chat 94.5 and My 96)  and the local news (CHAT news).  I then called Eiko and asked her to help spread the word with me. 

The Tiny Light Foundation is truly a fabulous foundation.  Not only do they provide beautiful photos for the families to cherish,  they help bring awareness to so many different disabilities and illnesses. We are so thankful to be a Tiny Light family and we plan on spreading the word about The Tiny Light Foundation wherever we can!

Images by Photography by Eiko

Words from A Guest Blogger, Tiny Light Mom, Jessica

Here is another touching Guest Blog from Tiny Light Mason's Mom, Jessica. Watch for his upcoming story! If you'd like to do a guest blog please email me at: angela@thetinylight.com
Thank you to all that have come forward to share already!

My Experience with my Tiny Light

On October 25th, 2010, I was blessed with a beautiful baby boy…7 weeks early! Mason was born weighing an incredible 6lbs 12oz with just a little breathing difficulty. Twenty four hours later, he was breathing on his own and doing well. We couldn’t wait to bring him home. Four days later, a large blood clot in his kidney was discovered, then a grade 4 brain bleed and subsequently, hydrocephalus. Needless to say, our world was turned upside down. We spent what was the longest and most difficult month of my life at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO). A lot changed for me in that month, most of all my view on being a parent of a sick child. I’ve always heard stories and heard of friends of a friend who were taking care of a sick child. I’ve always felt for them and hoped and prayed for the best but I can honestly say now that I never really understood. I don’t think you can fully understand unless you’ve had first hand experience. It is something that I wouldn’t wish on any parent or especially any child. I believe that it’s truly one of the hardest things a parent can go through, being so helpless when their child is hurting. I was very thankful for the other parents we met at CHEO who were going through something similar with their child. It was comforting being able to talk to someone who was going through what my husband and I were going through, someone else who truly understood.

        Ultimately, this was how I eventually discovered the Tiny Light Foundation. While at CHEO, we met Kim, Tiny Light Brynn’s mother. My mother used to teach with Kim and was following Brynn’s story. After Brynn’s passing, we saw Kim’s posting of the Tiny Light Foundation on her Facebook page and how happy she was that Brynn had become a Tiny Light. I read more about this wonderful foundation and spent the evening reading up on all the Tiny Lights. It was so comforting to see other families who had also gone through tough starts with their little ones and to see the pictures of their beautiful, happy child. I decided then to fill out an application for Mason.

        I was thrilled when I got a response that Mason was accepted as a Tiny Light. A day later, I got an email from photographer Donna Larmour. She was ready to set up a photo session for Mason. Donna was very accommodating. We met her a few weeks later, not far from our home, for an outdoor photo shoot with our now, healthy 6 month old. Mason had become a very happy little boy. He smiles all the time and I wanted to capture his joyful innocence in these pictures. Once outside, Mason wasn’t so happy. It was the first time we had really taken him outside for any length of time. It was a very nice day out, but the chilly wind was taking Mason’s breath away. It took everything we had to get a few smiles out of him. We danced around, made noises, and wrapped him in blankets to protect him from the wind. Donna was very patient and came up with creative ways to get some good shots despite Mason’s crying. A few weeks later I was so thrilled to see the results of what I thought was a difficult shoot. The pictures Donna took were amazing! Not only did she capture his beautiful smiles, but she did it in a way that was real and candid. We couldn’t have posed him any better! Even some of his crying pictures were beautiful! She captured the Mason I get to see everyday.

        My experience with the Tiny Light Foundation has been a lot more rewarding than I imagined. The gift of the pictures captured what we delight in. Looking at them, I sometimes forget about the hardship we went through that first month of his life, the hospital visits coming up and the challenges that may or may not lie ahead. Every parent worries about their child’s future, especially when they have a health condition. Even if only for a second, these pictures take my mind away from that worry when I see the face of my perfectly happy baby boy. When I look at all the Tiny Lights’ pictures, I can’t see the conditions. The only thing I notice when I read their stories and look at their pictures are all these beautiful, happy families rallying around a small child who brings them so much joy! No matter what they’ve gone through, or what challenges lie ahead, these amazing children make all of it worth while.

        The Tiny Light Foundation, through something as simple as a website, give struggling families hope and support. We are gifted with the knowledge that we are not alone, that we are supported by those who understand and are going through the same thing. With these gorgeous pictures by talented, committed photographers, we are gifted with a memory of pure joy and happiness.

        I check up on the Tiny Lights every day. It has become a part of my routine. I tell everyone I know about these amazing kids. It has forever changed my view on children with special needs and touched me more than I can ever describe. A big THANK YOU to the Tiny Light Foundation for doing something so simple that gives us so much in such an incredible way!
                                                                                                        Jessica Brozincevic

Photos by Donna Larmour 

Words from Guest Blogger, Amy

Today's Guest Blog is from Amy. Her son is one of our Tiny Light babies. They recently had their session done by Melissa DePape. James' story and photos will be up on the Tiny Light site within the next few weeks. Watch for it, he is adorable!

If you are interetested in being a Guest Blogger, please email me at: angela@thetinylight.com

 No parent ever wants the hear a doctor say, “There is something wrong with your child.” There is an audible snap of your heart, followed by a fog of shoc, blurred vision and sound. No matter what the diagnosis, it shakes you to your core. For me it was a prenatal diagnosis of Down Syndrome and serious heart defects in my son, James. From diagnosis, to treatment, to survival you learn, you live, you love. There are so many memories from the times of trial to the moments of pure joy. The Tiny Light Foundation brings mental snapshots of these memories into actual photographs.

I heard about the Tiny Light Foundation first from an article in our local paper where I recognized the picture of Melissa DePape and Angela Stephen-Dewhurst. Angela and I are moms to daughters in the same Kindergarten class. I proceeded to go the foundation's website to find out more about it. My first impression was what a wonderful gift it would be to have pictures of my precious James with his family. I have always wanted to get family pictures done, but with finances strained already it was an expense that I couldn't justify with our tight budget. The Tiny Light Foundation was the answer to my wish. I applied for James and waited for our photo shoot with Melissa DePape. I had secretly wished for Melissa to do our photos, as we share the common ground of having children with similar stories.

Our photo-shoot was perfect. The rain held off that day. The wind stirred up quite a bit but that led to moments of laughter and extra snuggly pictures as we tried to keep warm. Melissa was wonderfully calm and patient with our five children. She made us all feel at ease and made the whole experience comfortable and enjoyable. I find myself at a loss for words to describe the absolutely wonderful photographs that were taken that day. They were stunning and beautiful and something I will treasure forever.

It is hard to think of a way to thank this amazing foundation for all that they do. Maybe one day I will find a way. Until then I will support them in any way I can, for they have given me a way to see the love in my family just by looking at a photograph.

~ Amy Watkins, Tiny Light Mother

Photo by Melissa DePape Photography

Guest Bloggers!

We are always so excited to share with you the stories of our Tiny Light’s. One of the reasons that we started the Tiny Light Blog is to give you a behind the scenes view of the Tiny Light journey from many perspectives, not just ours!

We will be having Guest Bloggers, and we would love to hear your story! If you are a Tiny Light friend or family member, a photographer, writer, editor or have been involved with us in any way and would like to share, please do! You can email me at: angela@thetinylight.com to find out how to do a guest blog.

Our first guest blogger is one of our amazing Tiny Light photographers, Andrea Devisser!

My name is Andrea Devisser.  I am a Photographer based in Chilliwack & The Fraser Valley, British Columbia.  Capturing real life is what I do best.  A photojournalist of sorts, I approach each shoot in a documentary style.  Telling the story.  Your story.

I first read about the Tiny Light Foundation & Melissa DePape in our local newspaper, the Chilliwack Times.  I knew immediately that this was something I would love to be part of.   Incorporating my talent as a photographer and being able to give this gift to these kids each with their very own mountain to climb, tugged at my heartstrings.  Children, some of whom have unpredictable health, and sadly, sometimes diagnoses or a prognosis that is seemingly far too much to bear.

In my own family, we have two nephews with Down syndrome, both who are in every way “tiny lights”.  Being part of a family in which we are watching & supporting our siblings as they face the various triumphs & struggles in their children’s various developmental delays has definitely opened our eyes to the incredible blessing a foundation such as The Tiny Light can be.

Photographs.  A moment frozen in time.  We simply can’t put a price tag on this.  And so we don’t.  It is our gift to these children & their families.  I’ve seen the joy and the tears these photographs bring to these families. 

So far I’ve had the opportunity to photograph two very special tiny lights. 

The first session I did was for a little guy named Parker.  His session had a great impact on me; there is just something about this little man that truly shines.  Parker was diagnosed with Autism in 2006.  He later was also diagnosed with having severe bilateral sensorineural hearing loss.  You can see more photos from his session, and read a bit more on Parker, on my website: