Get your tickets, now!

After such a huge success last year, we are hosting our second annual benefit and silent auction at The Historic John P. Furber Farm. Like last year, guests enjoy dinner, dessert and one drink ticket with admission and there will be fun events happening throughout the night such as a wine/beer pull, a photo booth, Charlie Girl merch table and the heads or tails game. Last but not least –  we are downright tickled pink to announce our entertainment this year is CHARLIE PARR!!

CP

An easily confused and very shy individual, Charlie Parr has been traveling around singing his songs ever since leaving Austin Minnesota in the 1980’s in search of Spider John Koerner, whom he found about 100 miles north at the Viking Bar one Sunday night. The experience changed his life, made him more or less unemployable, and brings us to now: 13 recordings, 250 shows a year or more, 200,000 miles on a well broke in Kia, and a nasty fear of heights. Resonator fueled folk songs from Duluth Minnesota.”

We’ll be posting details of some of the featured auction items on our blog throughout the coming weeks so check back!

Proceeds from this event will be benefitting young children with congenital heart defects and their families. The majority of the monies raised will go in combination to support families we sponsor  – just like Vidar and Clark  – the two heart warriors we are currently sponsoring, and also to local hospitals (University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital, and Children’s Hospital and Clinics of Minnesota) researching ways to eradicate these diseases.

Although we anticipate having family-friendly events in the future, this event is best for adults only.


Event Schedule

5:00PM – Happy Hour and Silent Auction Begins

7:00PM – Dinner*

7:45PM – UPSTAIRS Silent Auction – END

8:00PM –Charlie Parr  (DOWNSTAIRS Silent Auction – END)

8:45PM – Checkout

*If you have special dietary restrictions please contact us when you purchase your tickets.

Second Annual Charlie Girl Benefit – Save The Date!

Annual Charlie Girl Benefit

For planning purposes, we ask that you please purchase your tickets no later than Wednesday, September 5th!

After such a huge success last year, we are hosting our second annual benefit and silent auction at The Historic John P. Furber Farm. Like last year, guests enjoy dinner, dessert and one drink ticket with admission and there will be fun events happening throughout the night such as a wine/beer pull, a photo booth, Charlie Girl merch table and the heads or tails game. Last but not least –  we are downright tickled pink to announce our entertainment this year is CHARLIE PARR!!

CP

An easily confused and very shy individual, Charlie Parr has been traveling around singing his songs ever since leaving Austin Minnesota in the 1980’s in search of Spider John Koerner, whom he found about 100 miles north at the Viking Bar one Sunday night. The experience changed his life, made him more or less unemployable, and brings us to now: 13 recordings, 250 shows a year or more, 200,000 miles on a well broke in Kia, and a nasty fear of heights. Resonator fueled folk songs from Duluth Minnesota.”

We’ll be posting details of some of the featured auction items on our blog throughout the coming weeks so check back!

Proceeds from this event will be benefitting young children with congenital heart defects and their families. The majority of the monies raised will go in combination to support families we sponsor  – just like Vidar and Clark  – the two heart warriors we are currently sponsoring, and also to local hospitals (University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital, and Children’s Hospital and Clinics of Minnesota) researching ways to eradicate these diseases.

Although we anticipate having family-friendly events in the future, this event is best for adults only.


Event Schedule

5:00PM – Happy Hour and Silent Auction Begins

7:00PM – Dinner*

7:45PM – UPSTAIRS Silent Auction – END

8:00PM –Charlie Parr  (DOWNSTAIRS Silent Auction – END)

8:45PM – Checkout

*If you have special dietary restrictions please contact us when you purchase your tickets.

Clark

      

CLARK

 

Help the Charlie Girl family celebrate Clark Hillestad! He’s now at home with his family, and growing, thanks to the expert efforts of Children’s Hospital, Minneapolis. He’s slowly weening off of many high-powered medications, and will likely not need another heart surgery for a couple of years.

 

 

Clark was born in July of 2017, and due to early detection, his heart defects were already known. This allowed the medical team and his parents, Andrew and Brianna, to approach his early challenges with a plan. Clark was born with Tricuspid Atresia, TGA, Coarctation of the Aorta, Tracheomalacia, and Vocal Chord Paresis. He survived his first open heart surgery at a mere five days old. Things are looking up.

 

 

Thanks to the generosity of donors like you, The Charlie Girl Foundation has been able to offer support to this happy little heart warrior and hisfamily. At the moment, he’s eating well, and spends a lot of time laughing with his older brother, Oliver. But as with all children with heart defects, the medical challenges, and family stresses are many. So, your continued prayer and support is greatly appreciated.

 

 

Your help is so much more than dollars. Trauma can be isolating, but the incredible community of support that you’ve help build at A Charlie Girl Foundation brings warmth and joy to the Hillestads and families of      other heart warriors. Keep checking in with us, for future updates, and for news on this year’s benefit dinner on September 20th.              

 

                                                            


Vidar

 

Vidar – Our first heart warrior

 

The first of our little heart warriors is Vidar. It’s been a dream of the Charlie Girl heart family to find and support other children embattled by congenital heart defects. Vidar came to us by way of a compelling letter from his parents, Joel and Emily. His parents describe him as a “beautiful little guy with big eyes and pouty lips and a full head of hair.” Our Charlie had a peculiar charisma which, beyond empathy for her health, drew support to her from everyone she touched. We felt that same pull from Vidar. We instantly wanted to help.

Vidar is named after a son of Odin, renowned for his fight and survivability. He’s aptly named. From as early as Emily’s 12-week prenatal ultrasound, Vidar’s survival was in doubt. We’ll detail a few of his many obstacles, but before we do, we’re very pleased to announce that Vidar is home with his family, and no longer pinned to a hospital bed by the myriad of necessary, but nightmarish tubes and wires of life support. He’s home with his family, being held, and supported, and this is a very great thing.

The road home was not easy, nor is it the end of his challenges. His official diagnosis is: Idiopathic Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. His heart walls were too thick to fit blood in his heart chambers and lungs too cloudy even to be considered a transplant candidate. He spent the first few months of his life, in and out of surgeries and procedures, fighting every day for what most of us take for granted. In the weeks leading up to his eventual release from the hospital, one of his father’s greatest joys, was finally seeing the lower half of his son’s face, as feeding tubes were removed. It was like a second birth, when a child emerged from the medical viscera.

He’s home now, and his heart is looking healthy, but challenges remain. Feeding without tubes is a challenge for Vidar. His family is hard at work, developing routines and strategies to continue Vidar on his way toward growth and health. In the thick of the fight, his mother, Emily, adopted this thought: Replace your fear with love. It’s given them strength when the reserves are low, and the tides of doubt and disaster are high. It continues to be their prevailing thought, even as the light of hope and health begin to dawn.

You, as donors, have been part of that light, part of that love. You’re a huge help to a second great challenge for families with heart warriors. The life-saving medical treatments cost dearly. Add to that, parents are parents first, and employees second, particularly when every day is a desperate fight for life. Bills come in, but paychecks don’t. Without support, the situational and financial stress to the families seems insurmountable.

We’re so thankful that you’ve chosen to support Charlie Girl Foundation, and beautiful heart warrior’s like Vidar. Take time this week, to pray in love, for Vidar’s continued progress. Keep checking in with us, for future updates, for news on this year’s Benefit Dinner (September 20, 2018), and for an introduction to a second heart warrior, who you’ve also helped to support.

A week after extubation.

First stroller ride with big brother Espen.

Brothers – Espen and Vidar!

 


Genesis…A New Beginning

Genesis is our eldest daughter Elliott’s middle name, it means a new beginning. A lot of people choose to look at the new year in the same light, a new year is like a new chapter, a new start, a new beginning. With 2017 being our first year of fundraising and starting the launch of A Charlie Girl Foundation, 2018 also feels like our new beginning, our Genesis as a full fledged foundation. It begins our ability to give, to use the generous donations each one of you has provided to take care of the children and families affected by congenital heart defects.

The end of 2017 brought in additional donations, making our year to date total approximately $30,000.00! An incredible number for our first year! This has allowed A Charlie Girl Foundation the ability to give $3,000.00 to the University of Minnesota Masonic Childrens Hospital and $3,000.00 to Childrens Hospital and Clinics of Minnesota. It also gave us the flexibility to choose to sponsor two families in our first year instead of one. Being able to support two families is an incredible beginning for our foundation, and a huge incentive to keep going. The more money we raise the more families that we can support! Each month we will provide a stipend of $500.00 to each family to use as they see fit. We will provide this support for the full calendar year. We will introduce you to the families soon!

As always we thank you for your incredible support and generous donations to such a worthy cause.

Sincerely,

Kelly and Ryan and the board of A Charlie Girl Foundation