Dear Tickle Bellies friends and supporters:
Thank you so much for your business and friendship. Our stationery company has grown nicely over the last four years and we are so proud that you have chosen us for your invitations, labels and notecards. We love being able to share our fun designs and love of stationery through our website and stores across the US.

Tickle Bellies is a small company and because of that, I have gotten to know many of you from answering the phone or through email. You may have even read the 'Tickle Bellies story' and have seen photos of my two girls, Emma and Ellie. They are amazing and the lights of my life. This past April 23rd our lives turned completely upside down. Our youngest daughter Ellie was diagnoised with a brain tumor. Ellie is five. She had no prior symptoms and woke up a bit confused in the middle of the night on April 23rd. .We thought she may be sleepwalking but I felt a strong urgency to take her to the emergency room. That is when a CT Scan revealed a very large tumor in the right frontal lobe of her brain. I am sure many of you can only imagine what that news is like and I hope you never find out something like this about your child. It's an emotional time and all I can say is that it is the worst thing that can happen to a family and the best thing - all wrapped up into one emotional ball.

I want you to know that Ellie is doing fine. She has had 2 brain surgeries (April 25th & 29th) and 95% of her softball sized tumor has been removed. We did some research regarding her cancer and tumor type and realized that receiving treatment at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, TN was our best option for a full recovery. Ellie has really been a miracle through all of this. She breezed through her first surgery which was suppose to be 10-14 hours long. By the grace of God, the surgery was just 4 hours and the tumor was not entangled as they had thought. She was never on a ventilator and her face never swelled at all like it was suppose to. She was the same sweet child coming out of surgery that she was going in. One of the doctors said it was 'Divine Intervention'. We agree. Ellie is a blessed child and we are so lucky to be her parents. Currently we are back in Memphis and undergoing chemotherapy. Ellie continues to do well and in December we should have the clear to go home. We pray to go home cancer free.

So...what does this have to do with you? Well, Ellie just LOVES to get mail. It really makes her day when we go to the mailbox and she receives a card. I was thinking how neat it would be to show her how wonderful people really are and that they care about her and what she is going through, even people that have never met her. So that is why I came up with Friends of Ellie. If you can, we would be so honored to receive a note, card or drawing from you or your kids. We have a wall where we place all of Ellie's cards and greetings. As I mentioned, this turn of events in our lives has been one of the worst things that could have happened to us, but God has showed Himself to us so strongly in the past few weeks and so many friends, family and even people we do not know have joined us on this journey. It has been life changing in a positive way and we will never be the same. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for listening and for your friendship and business. We also thank you for praying for our little girl. Your prayers and positive thoughts make a big difference and we can feel them all so strongly.

You can send your mail to us at the following address:
Ellie Bouchard
Target House 1 - Room 404
1811 Poplar Avenue
Memphis, TN 38104

You can follow Ellie's journey by visiting her Caring Bridge website. www.caringbridge.org/visit/ellie1

Thank you so very much! Colleen, Steve, Emma and Ellie