Blissful Bedrooms
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Ivey’s Bedroom Makeover

During the weekend of April 1-3, 2016, we completed our 18th bedroom makeover for a 15-year-old girl named Ivey, however, it wasn’t our average one. While we routinely interact with young individuals with severe disabilities, Ivey is one of the most medically fragile and physically limited young individuals we have ever served. Our challenge with fundraising for this project was to find a way to provoke others to see Ivey in the way her family does – as a sweet, beautiful, lovable person with a unique personality, who is trapped inside her body, but nevertheless is very much alive and present. Thank you so much to everyone who recognized Ivey and for believing that she was worthy of your investment in her happiness. With a community of compassionate contributors, we were able to create a tranquil and uplifting sanctuary fit for a lovely princess – a secret hideaway in a garden paradise with butterflies, magical unicorns and animals, and lots of trees and greenery – and we are happy to report that Ivey is very content in her new accommodations.

Ivey's-bedroom-portfolio-collage

From the first moment our team met Ivey and stood next to her bed, we were captivated by her eyes, framed by her oxygen mask, which were portals of vast expression and emotion, and seemed to have so much to convey to us. We spent a lot of time gazing into her face that day and knew that she would deeply feel and benefit from the act of love we were considering for her. Ivey is so strikingly affected by her disabilities that, while we had great faith that our efforts would drastically improve her everyday life, we didn’t know if she would react in a noticeable way when she was brought into her bedroom for the very first time during the Reveal. If we had any doubts about the awareness she has of her surroundings, and if she would perceive her new space, they quickly evaporated as the entire volunteer team watched her respond with obvious excitement for her transformed bedroom.

Ivey's-reaction

The revealing was so moving! Her father carried his fragile princess in his arms from the living room, down the long hallway, as someone followed close behind with her oxygen tank, and a house packed with supportive people chanted Ivey, Ivey, Ivey……… All of the volunteers were gathered in her room, ready to present Ivey with the gift they selflessly worked all weekend to create, and to welcome Ivey to her enhanced “world.” Her father gently placed her on the bed and he and mom quickly attached Ivey to her medical equipment. Everyone paused their joy and excitement as this was underway, and then when Ivey was safe and connected, the celebration resumed and the gasps and tears abounded. The best part was watching Ivey’s head vigorously move in every direction, and her eyes dart all around her new bedroom with obvious amazement and interest! Over the course of the evening, family, friends and neighbors toured the room and marveled at the beautiful work a group of strangers manifested for a sweet and vulnerable girl they never even met before this endeavor.

Please take some time to look at Ivey’s photo album on Facebook which nicely documents the bedroom makeover experience.



Prior to the makeover, we did a personal photo shoot with Ivey and her family, just like we do for every bedroom makeover recipient. However, this one was quite different from the previous ones and we faced some daunting obstacles. We weren’t quite sure how we would pull off capturing Ivey’s lovely essence, but we surrendered to the task and trusted that beautiful photos would result from our wholehearted efforts. We believe we accomplished our goal (see below) and her family members were deeply moved when they saw the photos displayed in Ivey’s bedroom.

IVEY-PHOTOSHOOT-COLLAGE

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Ivey is a delicate and vulnerable teenager who was born with a rare genetic disease that has led to her being completely confined to her hospital bed, 24-hours a day, and because she has profound deformities of her extremities and spine, the only position she can tolerate is lying flat on her back with her head turned to one side. To add to that harsh reality, Ivey must be connected to several pieces of life sustaining equipment at all times, including an oxygen mask that covers her face, a BIPAP machine, a vital signs monitor, and a feeding tube thru which she receives all of her nutrition. Ivey is non-verbal and can only communicate with her eyes. She requires round the clock nursing and the only time she ever leaves her bedroom is by ambulance to attend doctors’ appointments.

Please view Ivey’s video below. Any amount at all can help us turn her bedroom in to a comforting and peaceful sanctuary. In addition, we are seeking skilled volunteers to join Team Ivey (artists, house painters, electricians, carpenters, etc.). 

Meet Ivey!! Blissful Bedroom Makeover #18 from Blissful Bedrooms on Vimeo.

Support
Thank you to all of the amazing people who made this spectacular event possible! Whether you volunteered your time, donated money, or donated products and services, we are forever grateful and couldn't have done it without you.

Thank you to all of the beautiful volunteers – TEAM IVEY - who dedicated their hearts, shared their talents, devoted countless hours to Ivey's happiness and went above and beyond to make her bedroom makeover and special weekend perfect!

VOLUNTEERS:
Avra Cohen
Emma Craig
Atiya Diakite
Erica Diakite
Jordan Delzelll
Alex Gold-Dvoryadkin
Martha Gold-Dvoryadkin
Brian Golub
Irina Golubovic
Marko Golubovic
Dalila French
Naima French
Lexy Ho-Tai
Frank O'Leary
Chase Randell
Steve Rayboy
Mark Ressl
Adam Seim
Sergio Tsalantapis










Thank you to all of the generous ORGANIZATIONS/ BUSINESSES and INDIVIDUALS - IVEY'S ANGELS - who supported Ivey’s bedroom makeover by donating funds, services, food and/or materials. This makeover turned out amazing because of your help!

DONATIONS

Individuals
Brenda Allen
Erica Amadeo
Jessica Amadeo-Guzman
Marcus Arthur
Heather Bailey
Saije Bashaw
Rochelle Bell
Ronald Benjamin
Anna Berman
Elysa Blumenthal
Cynthia Buttafuoco
Antonio Camacho & Lizzette Perez
Ciretta Carroll
Raymond Chenez
Emma Craig
Susan D’Angelo
Rene Daniels
Katherine Deats
Erica Diakite
Kimberly Escobar
Jack Falk
Debra Fendell (in honor of Melissa Moschitto)
Eric Fiebert
Andrea Fitz
Lesley Flaminio
Julia Forbes
Janet Fowler
Katherine Fredrickson
Anna Georgalis
Suzanne Gerstein
Leigh Golterman
Irina Golubovic
Samantha Guariglia
Hector Guerrero
Teresa Hamm
Robert Hepner
Kaitlin Holt
Katerina Ho Tai
Pearl Ho Tai
Ginna Incalcaterra
Steve Jacobson
Maria Javier
Sigrid Jernudd
Margo Kakoullis
Martin Kaminer
Jon and Pamela Kalish
Cassandra Kane
Robert Kaplow
Adel Kerpely
Denise Kimberg
Lisa Kressbach
Yuko Kudo
Bekah Lacoste
Kevin Largent
Frances Lim
Ilene Martin
Michael McAndrews
Christelle Mopono
Andrea Morino
Bushra Nasim
Michael Nasutowicz
Clay Nelms
Lois Ogan
Caroline Proto
Eric Rayboy
Steve Rayboy (in honor of Diane Rayboy)
Libby Russell
Sandra Sanchez-Muller
Karn Santikul
Trish Schreiber
Monique Schreijer
Paul Shoyinka
Ramesh Sookhwa
Samantha Sossin
Amy Stevens
Donna Stevens
Anastasia Tamasco
Ryoya Terao
Christian Tice
Nancy Tompkins
Vanessa von Hessert
Jessica Williams

Companies/Organizations

Patron of Honor: The Stephen Colbert Americone Dream Fund

Alexographer
KKR – MP Charitable Fund
Murals Your Way
Spoonflower
White Faux Taxidermy

Thank you to the businesses who have adopted Blissful Bedrooms donation boxes, and to their generous customers who contribute to the boxes. You helped us manifest Ivey’s dream bedroom!

Belaire Diner
Brooklyn Bagel & Coffee Company
Coffee Pot
Double G. Pharmacy
Igloo Cafe
Natural Frontier Market
Omega Wines & Spirits
Rosario’s Italian Food Store
Stamatis
The Giving Tree Yoga Studio

If you are touched and inspired by what you've seen above, please help us to perform our next bedroom makeover by making a donation of any amount today. Our work is only possible because of your generous contributions and loyal support!