Thursday, December 15, 2011

{GIVEAWAY} Hospital Bag Essentials :: Everyone Poops

Plain and simple....we are all human and everyone does it. We take measures to hide this fact, but when you're in the tight quarters of a hospital there is nowhere to hide. It can be very stressful and humiliating to create a not-so-pleasant smell while away from the comforts of home. Let's just say, you don't want your nurse to call a "Code Brown"....seriously. 

We knew that some kind of room spray would make our "Hospital Bag Essentials" list. In our search for the perfect spray, we came across Poo-Pourri. The name caught our eye and we soon realized that Poo-Pourri is not your average room spray...It tackles the problem before it ever starts.. in the toilet. With a few sprays to the bowl, no one will ever know you were there. 

Poo-Pourri sells products like...  
  • Loo-Pourri ~ A Preemptive Bathroom Scent With a Touch of Elegance
  • No. 2 ~ Spray the Loo Before No.2 and No One Will Ever Have a Clue!
  • De'ja' Poo ~ You've Been Here Before, but Now with A Scent you Adore!
  • Royal Flush ~ Great Washroom Scents for all Distinguished Gents!

We don't want you to be caught in a "Code Brown" situation in the hospital or even at a friends house, so here is your chance to win your very own Poo Pourri!  We will have SIX lucky winners. We have 2 gift sets {pictured below} and 4 other single bottles of Poo-Pourri to share.  

So 6th on our Hospital Bag Essential List is.....Poo Pourri for your hospital room.

1. Annie & Isabel Hospital Gown - giveaway closed
2. Your Own Shower gel, Loofa, Lotion, & Lip Gloss/Balm - giveaway closed
3. Comfy Socks - giveaway closed
4. Journal or Notebook - giveaway closed
5. Flip Flops - to enter click here * closes midnight 12/15 PST
6. Smart Phone, Sound Dock & Favorite Playlist - to enter click here * closes midnight 12/18 PST
7. Room Spray like Poo Pourri - enter via this post
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To enter this giveaway you can do ONE or ALL of the following:

1.  Like Annie & Isabel on FACEBOOK AND like this giveaway post on our FACEBOOK page

2.  Tweet "Enter the @annieandisabel giveaway so you will never be caught in a #CodeBrown @poopourri1"

3. Share our post on your facebook wall by hitting the share button on our post and saying "Enter the Annie & Isabel Facebook giveaway so you will never be victim to a "Code Brown"


This gives you up to 3 entries into this contest!!!  Good Luck and...

*Giveaway is open to only US residents and winners will be picked randomly. We were not compensated for this post and we chose to feature Poo-Pourri in our Hospital Bag Essentials list. We were given products from Poo-Pourri to share with our readers. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

{GIVEAWAY} HOSPITAL BAG ESSENTIALS :: iPhone, iTunes, i-Everything

We know that iPhones have certainly changed our lives....period. So, taking your smart phone to the hospital definitely made our Hospital Bag Essentials list. Having your phone not only keeps you connected to your friends and family, it allows you to time your contractions, capture your labor in pictures and video and play your favorite pick-me-up or push-baby-out music while in the hospital. Also, it makes it easy for you to post a pic of your new little one and you in your Annie & Isabel hospital gown to your Facebook wall or Twitter stream. {HINT HINT}

But, seriously... We are excited for this giveaway because ANYONE will love this.. not, just someone going to the hospital. We love Kate Spade and love her iPhone cases. We are giving away this zebra Kate Spade iPhone 4S case {which matches perfectly with our Susan hospital gown} and a $25 iTunes gift card to one lucky winner!!!


So...5th on our HOSPITAL BAG ESSENTIALS CHECKLIST is... your smart phone, sound dock, and your favorite playlist
     1. Annie & Isabel Hospital Gown{s} - giveaway closed
     2. You Own Shower gel, Loofa, Lotion, & Lip Gloss/Balm - giveaway closed
     3. Comfy Socks - giveaway closed 
     4. Journal or Notebook- to enter click here *closes midnight 12/14 PST
     5. Flip Flops - to enter click here *closes midnight 12/15 PST
     6. Smart Phone, Sound Dock, & Favorite Playlist *enter below  
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To enter this giveaway - 

All you have to do is join our mailing list HERE. We will never spam you or give your email address out. We just want to send you special offers and happenings of Annie & Isabel now and then. Also, if you don't already like our page on Facebook.. we'd love that too!

This giveaway will run through Sunday December 18th at midnight PST. We will announce the winner Monday morning via email and on our Facebook & Twitter feeds. This giveaway is open to US residents only and the winner will be selected randomly. If we do not hear back from the winner within 72 hours and new winner will be picked. Good Luck!


We also wanted to recommend bringing a travel speaker set to the hospital. We emailed our favorites Bose and Koostick, but never heard back.. ha! Hey, it never hurts to try, right?  

Here are a few examples of sound docks from most technical to just plain cool...

Bose Soundock® Series II digital music system - retails $299.99

Koostik, the "natural alternative to electronically amplified iPhone sound docks". 

Each dock is hand crafted out of solid wood and made in America. We appreciate their values that ring so true with us. Koostik sells various sound docks for iPods, iPhones, and iPads ranging in price from $70-$90.  How convenient would their docks be to pack in your hospital bag? No batteries or plugs and the sound is beautiful. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

{GIVEAWAY} Hospital Bag Essentials :: Protect Those Feet With J Flops


There is NO reason that your bare feet should ever hit the hospital floors or, even worse...the dreaded hospital showers! You might like to think that hospitals are "clean", but take it from the registered nurses in your life...they are not that clean and actually house a mecca of superbugs and bacteria. ALWAYS pack a pair of flip flops in your hospital bag. 

For today's hospital checklist giveaway, we are really excited to partner with Jennifer of J Flops. Jennifer started J Flops in 2006 for the pure joy of making girls feet happy and stylish and THAT she has! The custom craftsmanship behind each pair is undeniable. Jennifer sews all embellishments on by hand; from fun glitter and ribbon, to beautiful Swarovski crystals. J Flops make the perfect addition to your Annie & Isabel designer hospital gown!

We are giving away THREE $30 gift certificates to J Flops...

There are 4 ways to enter this GIVEAWAY!

1. Like Annie & Isabel on Facebook AND like this giveaway post on our Facebook wall.

2. "reshare" {located next to the "comment" button} our Facebook post about this giveaway and say "Annie & Isabel is having a giveaway today"

4. Tweet out "Follow @annieandisabel & enter their giveaway for some fabulous flip flops here-> "

This gives you up to FOUR entries into this giveaway.  Good Luck!!

This giveaway will close at midnight PST on Thursday December 15th. We will announce the winner on Friday morning on our Facebook wall. This contest is open to US residents only and the winner will be selected randomly.

So let's review our Hospital Essentials checklist so far:

1. Annie & Isabel Hospital Gown{s} - giveaway closed

2. Your Own Shower gel, Loofa, Lotion, & Lip Gloss/Balm - giveaway closed
3. Comfy Socks - to enter this giveaway click here *closes midnight 12/13 PST
4. A Journal or Notebook - to enter this giveaway click here *closes midnight 12/14 PST
5. Flip Flops - giveaway closes midnight 12/15 PST
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Monday, December 12, 2011

{GIVEAWAY} Hospital Bag Essentials :: Bring a KATE SPADE Journal!

When a friend or loved one is stuck in the hospital and you don't know how to help them, here is a useful gift! Please read on.. so you can enter to win this fabulous journal from Kate Spade!

Are you are getting ready for a long hospital stay? Don't forget to bring a journal or notebook. When you are in the hospital...all the days tend to blur together. You lay in your hospital bed with emotions of uncertainty and questions, and when the moment comes and the doctors arrive...your mind goes blank! It happens every time. They are in a rush and you forgot that one thing you wanted to ask! I am always handing my patients paper to write down their questions. 

Having a journal or notebook gives you a place to jot down all your questions, concerns, and test results. Just last week, as I cared for my patient in the ICU, his lovely wife was being his amazing advocate and writing down all the happenings of the day in her journal. Having a journal will allow you to keep everything organized and ready for when someone needs information about your hospital course. 

     1. Annie & Isabel Hospital Gown{s} - giveaway closed
     2. You Own Shower gel, Loofa, Lotion, & Lip Gloss/Balm - giveaway closed
     3. Comfy Socks - to enter this giveaway click here *closes midnight 12/13 PST 
     4. A Journal or Notebook 
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We love all things fabulous, so we purchased this Kate Spade journal to give away to our fans.  

  • comment on this blog post with your email address AND/OR "like" our post on Facebook about this giveaway. We will put your name in twice if you do both!  
  • You do not have to be heading to the hospital to win!
This giveaway will run for 3 days and will close at midnight PST on Wednesday December 14th. We will announce the winner on Thursday morning on our Facebook wall and via email if you've entered on our blog. This contest is open to US residents only and the winner will be selected randomly. You are not eligible if you have won a previous hospital bag essential giveaway this week.

*This post is dedicated to my friend Nicole Carillo. My son was diagnosed with bacterial meningitis and was urgently admitted to the ICU when he was 2 years old and I was 8 months pregnant. Nicole brought me a journal, along with food for a week...and coffee every morning! I kept track of his lab results and updates from the nurses and doctors. I also wrote down all the names of the amazing medical staff that cared for him, so I could write them all thank you notes. I always cherish thank you notes from the patients I take care of and didn't want to forget the nurses and doctors that made our hospital stay so much more bearable. The journal Nicole gave me helped me after we got home from the hospital to process all that happened those two scary weeks. It helped me tremendously. Thank you Nicole!!! You are an amazing friend. 

Sunday, December 11, 2011

{GIVEAWAY 12/11-12/13} Hospital Bag Essentials :: Comfy Socks

Yes... these are standard hospital socks THAT are just plain ugly! How are you supposed to feel better when you have these to look down at while you roam the halls? Today's "HOSPITAL BAG ESSENTIALS" item is your own cute and comfy pair of socks! 

We love these shea infused lounge socks from Bath and Body. They are so incredibly soft and, more importantly, have grippers on the bottom {nurses don't like you to get out of bed without the grippers}. We are giving away one pair of each of the socks below....... these so beautifully match several of our designer hospital gowns. 

To enter our giveaway today it's easy!

1. "like" our post on Facebook about this giveaway - - - {HERE}

Contest closes at midnight PST Tuesday 12/13 & we will announce our 3 winners on our Facebook wall. Contest open to US residents only and winner will be picked randomly.  

Friday, December 9, 2011

{GIVEAWAY} Hospital Bag Essentials :: Don't Forget Your Lipgloss!

I will never forget how it felt to shower for the first time after the birth of my first son in the hospital. It was amazing...yes, I said amazing! I have been a nurse for quite a few years, and there is nothing that grosses me out more than hospital showers. That is why I packed my own shower gel, loofa, lotion, and lipgloss for my stay. I was so thankful I had them when the long awaited shower came to fruition and the visitors started to trickle in to see my son. It may seem like such an afterthought to bring your own products, but it can make a huge impact on your stay. 

So, next on our list of Hospital Bag Essentials are shower gel, loofa, lotion, and of course lip balm/gloss;)

We are thrilled to partner with alex + von consultant Anne Hamilton who is a breast cancer survivor and our Annie & Isabel warrior for this giveaway. After her victory against cancer, she started a blog "Livin' the Green" in which she educates and inspires all who subscribe to live a cleaner more healthy life. She has influenced us tremendously and even has us trading in our morning toast for green smoothies {sooo yum!} and shopping more organically for our families. When Anne announced that she was going to be a consultant for alex + von, a website dedicated to representing products and brands recommended and tested by women, we were listening. She introduced us to 100% Pure, a line of natural and organic skincare, bath and body products, and fruit pigmented cosmetics. Every product that we have tried...we have LOVED. Because the skin on our body is our largest organ, it is only fitting to nourish it with products that will not harm you.
We are honored to be able to share 100% Pure products with you. We will be giving away 2 baskets:




To Enter:
For an Extra Entry

*To be eligible to win this giveaway you must be a resident of the United States. The winner will be selected at random and your name will be entered as many times as you enter {up to 4}. Entries must be submitted by midnight PST this Sunday 12/11. We will announce the winner on our Facebook wall Monday morning. Good Luck!

Please take a moment to check out  alex + von and 100% Pure! We know you will love the products too!

Sunday, December 4, 2011


In the spirit of the holiday season, we would like to introduce our "HOSPITAL BAG ESSENTIALS" giveaway campaign that will run for the next two weeks! We have partnered with some of our favorite brands and purchased other products that we feel are necessary in making any hospital visit more comfortable.  As nurses, we know what you REALLY need and we can't wait to share these items with you.

We will be giving away TWO Annie & Isabel hospital gowns throughout this campaign.  What better way to kick off the fun than with a FREE Annie & Isabel designer hospital gown....THE most important item in your hospital bag.

If you know anything about our company, you know that all our hospital gowns are named after women who have inspired us.  We want to know who has inspired you.

To enter this giveaway, all you have to do is tell us about a person who inspires you on our Facebook wall.  Sometimes pictures help to tell your story, so we invite you to include a picture with your post if you so choose, but it is not required.

Now for the fun part.....the person with the most likes on their story will win the Annie & Isabel designer hospital gown.  We will ask our followers to vote on their favorite post and encourage you to invite your Facebook friends to help you win by liking your story.

This contest will end on Thursday, December 8th at midnight PST.  Good Luck and we can't wait to hear your stories!!

READY, SET.........GO ----> FACEBOOK

and remember.......

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Esther's Testimonial and An Appearance on the TV Show "The Doctors"!

One of the greatest rewards of having our company, Annie & Isabel, is the opportunity to come into contact with , learn from and often be inspired by the amazing women that wear our designer hospital gowns.  The women that share their stories with us always remain in our hearts and often in our prayers as they battle a disease or deal with unusual diagnoses or circumstances.  The testimonial we are sharing today is no different.   This testimonial comes from, Esther, who is a young mother of two beautiful children. We were contacted by Esther because she was interested in wearing one of our designer hospital gowns to recover from a rare surgery to correct a condition called Pectus Excavatum.  The surgery Esther endured to correct this condition was very invasive and required a lengthy recovery.  We were so happy that Esther was able to enjoy wearing one of our hospital gowns to provide some comfort, dignity and a little style during her hospital stay!!

We have been anxious to share Esther's testimonial with you because her story may be featured on the television show, "The Doctors"!
A part of her surgery was filmed for the show in order to share her story in hopes that it can help anyone else dealing with this condition. While our hospital gown was not filmed during the pre-operation and surgery it still feels pretty cool to know that we played a small part in Esther's successful surgery and recovery.

Esther is a 33 year old woman who is married and the mother of two beautiful children. She was born with Pectus Excavatum which is a congenital condition in which a person's sternum and several ribs grow abnormally, causing a large indent in a person's chest. People can live symptom free of this condition but in more severe cases it can cause problems. Esther had never had problems until she had her second child. It was at that time that she began experiencing shortness of breath, a racing heart and an inability to physically exert herself to a normal activity level.  She also had severe pain in the middle of her chest that she described as the feeling of "a knife being plunged in one end and out the other." She realized that she needed to undergo a pretty radical surgery in which a metal bar is placed in her chest to hold up the chest wall and allow her muscles and tendons to grow and strenghthen and learn their "new" position, at which time the metal bar will be removed.

Esther has undergone a very painful and long recovery but we are happy to report that she is beginning to get back to her normal daily activities with a much higher quality of life. This surgery has been a life savor for both Esther and her family!

Esther recovered in style with her "Susan" Annie & Isabel designer hospital gown. While you can tell she had just undergone a major surgery, she looked pretty good in her hospital gown!

Here is what she had to say about wearing her Annie & Isabel hospital gown:

"I absolutely LOVED the "Susan" hospital gown. It made me feel like a human being at a time when my entire world had turned upside down. I felt like a woman wearing the gown and not a specimen or science experiment. It was very pretty and beyond pretty. It was fun and had personality. I also got many compliments about the gown, and that felt really good and made me feel a whole lot more comfortable given that I had just had a metal bar literally shoved into my chest, and wasn't feeling so hot in general. I also liked the thickness and quality of the material and how when it covered my body, it was not revealing in the slightest. I appreciated the modesty it afforded me, both laying in the bed, and walking around the hospital wing. All in all, I was so happy to have such a pretty gown to recover in."

Thank you for such a nice testimonial Esther.  We know you will be enjoying a much better quality of life and can now fully enjoy playing with those beautiful children of yours!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

"I Cheated Cancer"

Today's "Wednesday Warrior" is Patricia Brett. Patricia's immediate and extended family have been ravaged by breast cancer. She has lost loved ones and has seen several family members suffer through surgeries and treatments to beat breast cancer. Patricia herself, feeling like it was only a matter of time before she would have breast cancer, underwent a prophylactic double mastectomy to give herself a chance to live a long life and be able to enjoy seeing her son grow up. She tells her story so well below.   What we really love about Patricia is that she used this awful experience to help other breast cancer survivors by creating a product to help women feel better about themselves after losing their breasts.  Please read Patricia's story below to find out more about her family history with breast cancer and the amazing product she developed to help breast cancer survivors!!

"I cheated cancer.

These three little words would be enough to satisfy most people for a lifetime. For me, it simultaneously signaled the end of one journey and the start of a new one. It also taught me there is a real truth to the old saying "everything comes full circle."

I grew up in Ravenna, OH, the youngest girl in a family of 11 children. My father, the oldest son in a family of ten, had the added responsibility of looking after his siblings. This included his youngest sister Veronica, who was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 41. I went with him to visit her in the hospital and remember him bringing her wigs. I knew he was thinking, "If only she could look better she would feel better, and then she'd get better." Sadly that wasn't to be the case. Including Veronica, who passed away at age 44, my dad lost three of his six sisters to breast cancer, all at young ages. I always knew, even as a child, that breast cancer was somehow "in the family". I wouldn't realize just how much until many years later.

In February 1998, my sister Regina was diagnosed with breast cancer - at age 41. She had to undergo the full treatment - mastectomy, chemotherapy and radiation. The first in my generation, she was soon followed by three first cousins, all about my age or younger, including two of Veronica's daughters.  Later, more cousins were diagnosed, two with breast cancer and one with ovarian cancer.

It turns out that my family carries a genetic mutation that predisposes us to breast and ovarian cancer.  The cold hard facts - while there is a 50% chance of having the BRCA1 gene, if you do have it, there is up to an 85% chance of getting breast cancer in your lifetime. And with my family history, it wasn't "if", it was "when".

In early 2002, I tested positive for the BRCA1 gene. Of the six girls in our family, only my sister Regina and I carry the gene. I always knew I was like my father. The person from whom I inherited the genes for blue eyes, long skinny legs and hard work ethic, passed along to me a genetic mutation for breast cancer. Luckily, he never knew this himself, having passed away before our discovery.

After a whole summer spent worrying about whether or not I had breast cancer, followed by surgical biopsies (all negative!) I decided to eliminate my risk. So, in January 2003, I had a prophylactic bilateral mastectomy with reconstruction. I was 39.  My son had just turned two and I knew I needed to be around to see him grow up. Four years later,  in May 2007, after a long and difficult decision-making process, I had my ovaries removed. While these measures may seem drastic to some, it was the only way I could insure that, at the very least, breast or ovarian cancer would not prevent me from some day attending my son's wedding or seeing him graduate from college.

Strangely enough it was a wedding, or more specifically, Regina's visit to New York in search of a dress for her daughter's wedding, that started my entrepreneurial wheels turning. She wanted something beautiful, sexy and elegant, which could also accommodate her thick-strapped bra and breast forms (she calls them "Thelma and Louise"). We scoured all of Manhattan and found nothing. She ended up wearing the same simple, black, tank-style column dress she had worn to countless other events. It just struck me, after everything breast cancer survivors have to contend with, finding something to wear shouldn't be yet another challenge.

Then, in October 2007, not long after my ovarian surgery, I joined Regina and her then 29 year-old daughter Gabe for a girls' weekend. Gabe, who inherited the BRCA1 gene from her mother, had scheduled her own risk-reducing bilateral mastectomy for December of that year. Like her mother, she opted not to have reconstruction. For perspective, this was my 5'2", blond-haired, blue-eyed, tiny, beautiful, recently married niece who wore cute little camisoles with colorful bra straps peeking out!  While she had made peace with the idea of surgery, she spent the weekend venting, "I'll have to give away my entire wardrobe!" or "The mastectomy swimsuits are all floral with horrible little skirt bottoms." You get the picture.

That Monday I came back to New York, pulled out my sketchbook and began to draw.  At the same time, I drafted a rough business plan with the (admittedly) unglamorous working title 'Fashions for Women - Post Mastectomy'.  I joked, "If I can design a building, surely I can design a bra or swimsuit?!" After all, I did have a Master of Architecture degree from Yale! Armed with inspiration from my sister and my niece, I set out to create something to help both breast cancer survivors and pre-vivors (a person like me, who has not been diagnosed with cancer, but has survived the higher risk of cancer) look and feel like a million bucks again.

I made the first swimsuite myself, fashioned from a store-bought pattern that I modified to add coverage where needed, cut it a bit sexier where I could and added pockets that allowed for breast forms.  It was totally crude - the suit barely held together, the leg seams and armholes weren't even finished.

The next time my sister came to New York for a visit, I asked her to try it on.  Almost immediately her eyes lit up, she burst into tears and started twirling like a little girl.

"This is the sexiest thing I've worn in ten years!" she declared.  "This could be the bodice of a dress, a shirt, a body suit...!"

Since then, I've worked with more patternmakers, sample sewers and factories than I care to admit.  It's a technical, well-engineered solution that requires a high level of expertise. Maybe that's why some of those other suits looks the way they do.  But I kept at it, knowing that, if I was successful, one day women all over the world would have the opportunity to twirl around like my sister and feel fabulous all over again.

The brand, which debuted in Spring 2010, is named veronica brett, in honor of my aunt Veronica who we lost to breast cancer 35 years ago. She was beautiful, intelligent, elegant, and an inspiration.  I want every woman who wears a product bearing her name to feel the same way, and to truly believe our philosophy that "LIFE NEVER LOOKED SEXIER".

These pictures are of one swimsuit that Patricia designed and is modeled by breast cancer survivor and activist, Stephanie LaRue.  Please visit Patricia's beautiful website, Veronia Brett,  to see many more.  You can also find her company on FACEBOOK and TWITTER.

Monday, November 7, 2011

The "Annie" Hospital Gown Brings Comfort During a Tough Pregnancy and Hospital Stays

Today's testimonial comes from Michelle who is a friend and co-worker of mine.  Michelle is an Emergency Room nurse and knows, first hand, how terrible standard hospital gowns are. She was excited to purchase her own Annie & Isabel gown well before her sweet little daughter was born. It was a good thing Michelle ordered her gown early, because, unfortunately she had some unexpected hospital stays during her pregnancy.

Michelle picked the "Annie" designer hospital gown to wear during her hospital stays and gave us a very nice testimonial below:

"I wanted to let you know how much I loved having my gown for my hospital stays during my pregnancy.  I was admitted a couple times during my pregnancy due to preeclampsia and it was hard to be away from my young son and husband; especially not having my baby yet to keep me occupied.  It was really nice to have a hospital gown that I was comfortable in, and that smelled like home during those stays.  I got so many compliments from nurses, doctors, and other patients during my stays and while being stuck on bedrest in the hospital was hard, it made me feel a bit better being able to wear something of my own style and that I knew was clean.  The gown was wonderful during the frequent fetal monitoring.  It was also great to wear after the birth of my daughter.  I loved having the snaps on the sleeves to help with pumping and since my little one was in the NICU I had to pump often.  The pocket was wonderful to put my camera and cellphone in during my visits to see my daughter.  I will definitely recommend these gowns to my friends - it's so nice to wear something of your own during hospital stays, and the gowns are perfectly designed for monitoring, breastfeeding, pumping, and walking to and from your room while maintaining modesty."

Congratulations and thank you Michelle!!! Your new family of four is beautiful. 

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

KCRA Channel 3's Leticia Ordaz Welcomes a New Baby Boy!!

It is such a pleasure to share this beautiful testimonial from Leticia Ordaz today.  For those of you that are local to Sacramento, you probably recognize Leticia Ordaz. She is a news reporter for KCRA Channel 3. She is a beautiful person inside and out and recently welcomed her first child into the world.  We feel so honored that she wore one our "Isabel" Annie & Isabel designer hospital gown during her hospital stay. We also, once again, have the most amazing pictures to share with you from Brenda Bisharat Photography, who captured the first precious moments of the Ordaz's new family together. These are some photos that we know Leticia and her family will always cherish.....such a beatiful family!

Leticia wore the "Isabel" designer gown during her hospital stay.  Here is what she had to say about her experience wearing her Annie & Isabel hospital gown:

"I wanted to let you know I absolutely loved my designer Annie and Isabel hospital gown. Your blue "Isabel" gown made me feel so glamorous after giving birth.  The hospital staff at Sutter, along with my friends and family commented that I didn't look like I had just been through hours of labor.  The gown made me feel beautiful.  Thanks for creating a wonderful garment for new mothers.  Brenda Bisharat's beautiful photos really helped capture my joy of becoming a mother for the first time.  I can't thank you enough for making my special day even more memorable.  I loved the gown so much, I have the picture of me and my sweet son Maxton on my facebook profile."

Leticia Ordaz ~ Sacramento, CA

Our "Isabel" designer hospital gown will be making it's second appearance on national television tomorrow night on abc's Private Practice! Watch the preview here to see Addison, played by Kate Walsh, in the gown. This episode airs Thursday at 10pm.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Happy Birthday Mom! :: ONE DAY Susan Designer Hospital Gown {birthday} SALE

Tonight our family will be going out to dinner to celebrate our mom and best friend Susan's birthday. She taught us the importance of family and we are SO blessed to have her as our mom! She has always supported us in everything we've done...from following her footsteps to careers in nursing to starting Annie & Isabel, which has been more wonderful than we ever could have imagined! She is always there to listen and knows just what to say...or not! As most of you know...we named our "Susan" zebra print hospital gown after her. With each gown that we ship out, a card is laid upon it with these words that say it perfectly...

To celebrate her birthday...We're offering a one-day-only 20% discount on The Susan Gown. Use the code "CelebrateSusan" today {October 27th} in our shop

Happy Birthday Mom! We love you SO much!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

::Wednesday Warrior:: Brandie's Story

We are happy to introduce you to this weeks Annie & Isabel "Wednesday Warrior", Brandie. We have been following Brandie's blog and battle with breast cancer for the past 6 months and find her to be such an inspiration! She is currently rockin' her "Annie" Annie & Isabel hospital gown for radiation treatments. We'd love if you read Brandie's story below then leave a comment or visit her blog to cheer her on! She has been feeling exhausted this week from radiation and we hope our Annie & Isabel love will bring her a smile today! 

"Just about 6 months ago, my world was turned upside down when I learned I had breast cancer... Hearing the news was just so shocking. I imagine it's always shocking to get that sort of news, but the thing is... I had no idea I might even have cancer. You see, my mom had breast cancer when she was 30. So my doctor sent me to get my baseline mammogram solely based on my mom's history. The doctor even told me she didn't see anything going on, so don't worry. It was just going to be a baseline. When the mammogram showed that something was going on and I found myself having to get a biopsy, none of it seemed to make sense. 

I am 31 years old. I have 3 kids to raise. Breast cancer had no place in my life. And yet, there I was, trying to process some of the hardest news I've had in my life. The doctor appointments felt never ending. Decisions has to be made. Treatment plans mapped out. Babysitters to be found and a huge fight that needed to be fought. 

3 weeks after diagnosis, I was at the hospital having a double mastectomy. My hospital stay?... It was the longest I'd been away from my two youngest kids, and only one other time was I away from my oldest for that long. It was so hard. 

A month later... chemotherapy started. 16 weeks of chemotherapy - 4 different medicines being pumped into my body. 

Now it's time for me to start radiation. It has gotten off to a rocky start... there were some issues with being able to get the radiation to where I needed it to be. Thankfully, those issues are resolved so now I can get back to kicking cancer's butt. 

Brandie {far left} with her parents and sisters
I won't lie. It is hard. This road is full of many bumps, some bigger than others. The love and support from my family and friends have helped me get through it all. The other thing that has helped me get through this is blogging. I love having that outlet. I've been honest- maybe too honest some days - on my blog about everything going on. It's been such an important part of the acceptance process and the healing process. For me being able to share, has taken away the power of cancer and put it back into my hands. So much right now is out of my control. The feeling like I'm getting some of it back...? Well, that's amazing!!"

Brandie in her Annie hospital gown ready to take on style!

Friday, October 14, 2011

ABC Primetime Drama Private Practice Features Annie & Isabel Hospital Gowns!

A few months back we received an order for twelve Isabel gowns in various sizes from ABC Studios! We couldn't help feeling SO excited at the thought of Annie & Isabel making it's primetime debut! Last night was the night! Our Isabel gown was spotted in the Oceanside Wellness Group of Addison's "Private Practice".  Here are a few screen shots and a link below so you can see it for yourself. We must say that the actress looked gorgeous and the gown looked so beautiful on her, don't you think?! Thank you to everyone for you support and excitement along with us! 

Watch the episode HERE on
{2 minutes 10 seconds into the episode...not too long to wait!}

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Wednesday Warrior ~ Breast Cancer Survivor Makes Her Passion Her Mission

Today's Wednesday warrior is Elyn Jacobs. Elyn, her mom, and sister all battled breast cancer. Elyn was her mom's main advocate and it was this experience as well as her own that made her realize how important it is to have someone be an advocate for you when going through a diagnosis such as cancer.  As nurses we KNOW this to be true. We feel blessed to be in the medical field and have used our knowledge to advocate for many family members and friends during their own medical ordeals. 

Elyn was so passionate about the need for people to have advocates when dealing with a cancer diagnosis that she left her job on Wall Street, where she had worked for 23 years, to start her own business of being what she calls a "cancer coach." She helps anyone dealing with a cancer diagnosis navigate through the medical system.  Her story is wonderful and we feel so strongly about what she is doing that we thought she was the perfect person to be our Wednesday warrior!!  When you read her story below, you will know why she is such a brave warrior in a world that can be hard to navigate with a cancer diagnosis. 

"My mother succumbed to breast cancer in 2007, after a long, grueling battle.  I was diagnosed just prior to her death and my sister a year later.  My mother always said “I never meant to get cancer.”  Nobody intends to get it and nobody should ever feel at fault for getting cancer. I never meant to get it either, so after battling breast cancer I realized that I would do everything possible to avoid a recurrence.  I began with extensive research to better understand the causes which led to certain lifestyle changes I have made. Cancer is a multifactorial disease.  Simply put, several elements combine to either produce or eliminate a cancer cell. By changing the environment in which cancer was permitted to grow, you reduce its ability to take hold again. I exercise, but no longer so intensely that I compromise my immune system.  I gradually changed my diet to a mostly plant based one, and cut back on my wine intake. Some people eat to live and some live to eat.  I do both, I just make better choices now and concentrate on foods with cancer fighting nutrients. I take supportive supplements to strengthen my immune system. I have taken steps to reduce my stress, adding yoga and other relaxation modalities into my routine.  I avoid situations that I know will be stressful, such as opting to take a taxi rather than drive on a rainy day in traffic.

Elyn with her beautiful boys
From beginning to end of my journey, I had an incredible team of doctors who empowered me to take control of the situation.  My questions were answered, my voice heard. When faced with a life threatening disease, you can acquire amazing strength if you have a solid plan and strong team behind you. I reflected on my mother’s ordeal, and in remembering all the errors and near mishaps, I came to realize that likely my experience was far better than most. 
Elyn's mother 4 months before she succumbed to breast cancer
My mother’s journey was strife with episodes of doctor’s orders, not teamwork, and I had to intervene many times. I remember one particularly disturbing occurrence. She had just endured some substantial surgery for recurrence when her doctor called to say a follow up scan detected a spot on her lung.  The doctor recommended a biopsy procedure resembling open heart surgery.  I explained that my mother was very weak and that such invasive surgery would kill her.  The doctor gave us no options.  I began calling other facilities to see if there was some other way.  I soon learned that my mother could likely have a needle biopsy.  I called a doctor I knew at the New York City location of my mother’s cancer center and asked why this was not an option for her.  He calmly explained that of course it is, but that the adjunct facility simply is not aware of this option.  I was stunned.  This was a prominent cancer facility. The needle biopsy was performed in New York, no cancer; we could have lost her to an unnecessary surgical biopsy. Many women find it a challenge to find a doctor who can hear and respond to her opinions and questions, and all too often women are pushed into a path for treatment that does not suit her core needs or desires.

I found my new passion.  I wanted to be the voice.  I wanted to make sure that all women were heard by their doctors and received the best possible care. I wanted to help women to reduce their risk of recurrence. I wanted others to know the value of complementary therapies during and post treatment. I wanted to help others get past their cancer and into cancer-free lives. I became a cancer coach.

Elyn's favorite spot...the beach in front of her parent's beach house...beautiful!!

I have been successful in helping women better understand their diagnoses and treatment options and in helping them choose the right team and path for treatment. Cancer treatment requires an individualized plan, as every cancer is unique and there is not one plan for treatment that fits the needs of all.

Information is power. My goal is to get this information to women and to empower them to make the best choices for them, for their cancer. I accompany women on visits to the doctor where I take notes and ensure the tough questions get asked.  I know that under these circumstances, it is very difficult to concentrate on all that a doctor is saying. Together we choose a team, even if that means second or even third opinions and firing a few doctors. Once team and treatment plans are chosen, we work together through the process. I feel strongly that no woman should have to face cancer alone.

My role is not often easy, but I want to make a difference.  Helping others has helped me to heal, and the appreciation of my clients tells me I am making a difference."  

To learn more about Elyn's mission and clients, please visit:

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Shannon Welcomes Her Third Daughter In The Elizabeth & Annie Designer Hospital Gowns

We have been so excited to post this beautiful testimonial from Shannon which chronicles the arrival of her third daughter. You may recognize the gorgeous work from Bisharat Photography and we feel honored that our Annie & Isabel designer hospital gowns were the backdrop to such a special day! Brenda Bisharat is available to photograph your birth if you live in the Sacramento area, something that we both did with our youngest sons - unfortunately before Annie & Isabel came about! She took these photographs of Shannon before, during, and the day after her daughter arrived. Thank you to Brenda and to Shannon for sharing them with us!

Here is what Shannon wrote about her experience wearing her Annie & Isabel designer hospital gowns:

"During my pregnancy, I learned that one of my daughter's classmates mom was one of the designers of Annie & Isabel.  I knew then that I had to don one of these adorable gowns during my hospital stay for baby # 3.

So, it was such a treat when during my maternity photo session, our wonderful photographer, Brenda Bisharat, surprised me with two beautiful Annie & Isabel gowns.  We were expecting our third daughter - so the Annie and Elizabeth were perfect.  The gowns were washed, ironed and packed weeks before my due date - just in case!  There was no way I would wear any old gown."

"While at the hospital in labor, I wore the Elizabeth.  I walked and walked that short hallway in my adorable gown and heads turned every time! Nurses and other patients couldn't help but comment and ask where I got it - or if it was provided by the hospital.  I proudly replied, "No, it is Annie & Isabel - it was a gift."  Big belly and all, I received tons of compliments."

"Even as the team of doctors and nurses came in when the baby was born, they couldn't believe how adorable the gown was, and that I was actually wearing it during labor!  The yellow and fun polka dot pattern made me feel so happy and comfy."

"Once I was moved up to my private room, I changed into the Annie gown.  It was so nice to feel "pretty" just after delivery!  And to be so comfortable, I felt like a princess!"

"Thanks to Brenda Bisharat and Annie & Isabel for helping us moms feel extra special! I only wish I had them for my first two deliveries:-)."

~Shannon, Sacramento, CA

Do you know about our partnership with Brenda Bisharat Photography for local moms-2-be?  
With the purchase of an Annie & Isabel designer hospital gown, Brenda Bisharat will come to the hospital the day after your delivery for a complimentary photo session of you and your new baby! In addition to the session, Brenda includes a free 5x7 and will put up a nice slideshow that you can share with family and friends.  Click the link below for more information.