December 18, 2018

Santa Claus made his way to Texas Children’s Newborn Center last week to spread some holiday cheer – but he wasn’t the only one dressed up in red. Babies in the NICU at Texas Children’s Hospital Pavilion for Women and West Tower were dressed in their own tiny Santa hats and booties.

Vincent Michael Garza, born on December 6, was dressed in a green and white striped holiday-themed onsie when Santa walked in bellowing a spirited Ho, Ho, Ho! The days old infant gave Santa a quick newborn smile and then went peacefully back to sleep.

“I love this,” said Santa Claus, who has a personal connection to Texas Children’s – his own grandson spent over 100 days in the NICU when he was born. “It makes my day.”

Click here to watch a video of Santa visiting babies in the NICU at Texas Children’s Hospital Pavilion for Women.

Vincent’s mother, Norma Garza, said Santa’s visit meant so much to her, giving her a sense of joy, relief and normalcy during what was a longer stay at the hospital than expected.

“Everyone here has been so great,” she said. “Having Santa come by made it even better.”

Vincent and Norma got an equally as good surprise later that day – clearance from Vincent’s doctor to go home! The infant was discharged on December 12, just in time to spend the holidays at home with his family.

Stephanie Jones, a Texas Children’s employee, delivered her son, Levi, on October 8. He has been in the NICU at the Pavilion for Women ever since and might not be discharged by the end of the month. So, having Santa personally visit the infant was super special.

“Being here in general is hard,” Jones said. “A surprise visit like this helps bring peace of mind and a little bit of normalcy to our day.”

The visit from Santa was hosted by the hospital’s Newborn Center Family Advisory Committee and First Memories Texas, a volunteer group that helps families with babies in the NICU and CVICU at Texas Children’s to make memories and tell their children’s stories through photography.

January 3, 2018

Texas Children’s employees kicked off the holiday season with camaraderie and joy by participating in the organization’s annual bread and wassail tradition. Employees enjoyed delicious holiday bread and wassail served by our leaders earlier this month. Please view the photo gallery below to see photos of the festivities.

December 20, 2017

From festive holiday decorations to trees decked out in ornaments and lights, it sure is beginning to look and feel a lot like the holidays at Texas Children’s.

Throughout the month of December, the Child Life Department and Volunteer Services collaborated with several organizations in the community to spread holiday cheer to patients and their families. From Texas Children’s Medical Center campus to Texas Children’s West Campus and The Woodlands campus, employees organized numerous fun activities for the kids that brought plenty of smiles and laughter to their faces.

Besides the annual tree lighting events to kick off the spirit of giving, children participated in holiday arts and crafts, built their own gingerbread houses and got their pictures taken with Santa and Mrs. Claus. Bennet’s Bears and United Airlines surprised inpatients with a special delivery of stuffed teddy bears. Texas Children’s beloved therapy dog Elsa also joined in on the festivities at the hospital.

Santa Claus also made his way to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women to spread some holiday cheer – but he wasn’t the only one dressed up in red. Babies in the NICU were dressed in their own tiny Santa hats and booties.

The visit from Santa was hosted by the hospital’s Newborn Center Family Advisory Committee and First Memories Texas, a volunteer group that helps families with babies in the NICU and CVICU at Texas Children’s to make memories and tell their children’s stories through photography.

December 5, 2017

It’s beginning to look a lot like the holidays at Texas Children’s. The annual tree lighting ceremonies kicked off the season of joy with Santa and Mrs. Claus spreading holiday cheer to patients and their families.

On November 30, Senior Vice President Tabitha Rice and Nancy Baycroft, president of The Auxiliary to Texas Children’s Hospital, kicked off the tree lighting event on The Auxiliary Bridge. Within seconds, the bright lights magically turned on and Santa’s HO HO HO could be heard as he walked down the hallway bearing gifts. Every child received a stuffed holiday bear. Santa also visited patients who were not able to leave their rooms. St. John’s School Choir sang holiday carols to more than 50 patients and their families.

Santa Claus also spread holiday cheer to more than 145 guests at the inaugural Tree Lighting event at Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands. Chief Medical Officer Dr. Charles Hankins delivered the welcome speech and Vice President Trent Johnson thanked the event sponsors, Newfield Exploration and The Woodlands Art Council, and wished everyone good cheer. Children took photos with Santa and participated in fun activities including making holiday ornaments and picture frames.

Approximately 8,000 people attended the 10th annual Tree-Lighting Celebration in the courtyard at LaCenterra at Cinco Ranch on November 18. Three-year-old Paris Ndu, a patient at Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus, had the honors of lighting the 30-foot Christmas tree to kick off the holiday season.

With the holiday season upon us, there’s plenty of cheer left for patients, families and employees. Be sure to check out one of these holiday gatherings on your clinic floors and get in the holiday spirit.

  • Thursday, December 7 – Gingerbread house making (10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in The Zone)
  • Thursday, December 7 – Storybook Theater with Elsa (3 p.m., The Woodlands campus lobby)
  • Monday, December 11 – Junior League Big Santa Event (1 p.m. in The Zone)
  • Friday, December 15 – Bennett’s Bears visit fifth-floor inpatient (The Woodlands)
  • Tuesday, December 19 – Santa visits patients (1 p.m., West Campus)
  • Thursday, December 21 – Holiday Piano & Violin Duo (11:30 a.m. The Woodlands campus lobby)
  • Friday, December 22 – Bennett’s Bears visit clinic floors (10 a.m., West Campus)
December 6, 2016

It’s beginning to look a lot like the holidays at Texas Children’s Hospital. The Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony kicked off the season of joy with Santa and Mrs. Clause helping to light The Auxiliary Bridge Christmas tree.

St. John’s choir sang holiday carols as young patients danced along. Senior Vice President Tabitha Rice helped kick off the lighting ceremony. Within seconds, the lights magically turned on and the “HO HO HO” of Santa could be heard as he walked down the hospital hallways.

View photos from the event below.

There’s plenty of cheer left for patients, families and employees. Be sure to check out one of these holiday gatherings on your clinic floors and get in the holiday spirit.

  • Monday, December 12 – Four Seasons Santa’s workshop
  • Wednesday, December 14 – 360 Property Agency Craft Party
  • Friday, December 16 – Direct Energy Board Game Mania
  • Tuesday, December 20 – WATCH Santa Day
December 2, 2015

It’s beginning to look a lot like the holidays at Texas Children’s Hospital. The Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony kicked off the season of joy with Santa and Mrs. Clause helping to light The Auxiliary Bridge Christmas tree.

St. John’s choir sang holiday carols as young patients danced along. Executive Vice President and John Nickens helped kick off the lighting ceremony. Within seconds, the lights magically turned on and the “HO HO HO” of Santa could be heard as he walked down the hospital hallways.

There’s plenty of cheer left for patients, families and employees. Be sure to check out one of these holiday gatherings on your clinic floors and get in the holiday spirit.

  • Friday, December 4 – Four Seasons Santa’s workshop
  • Monday, December 7, 8 – Junior League volunteers bring Santa to various Clinical Care Center floors
  • Tuesday, December 15 – FBI members carol the halls
  • Thursday, December 17 – WATCH Santa Day
  • Monday, December 21 – Retired NBA players visit floors
  • Thursday, December 24 – Bennett’s Bears – Brande Nester visit clinic floors
January 20, 2015

12115Operasinger640

Ana Maria Martinez is known around the world for her Grammy Award-winning voice. The soprano has performed with the likes of Andrea Bocceli and Placido Domingo, world-renowned artists in Opera. Martinez graduated from the prestigious Julliard School of Music and has played at La Scala in Milan, at the Met in New York City and at the most important opera houses around the world. In mid-December she played Boheme in the Paris Opera, but just a few days later, when Martinez visited Texas Children’s Hospital, the children were the star of her show. She stood in the West Tower lobby and sang to patients waiting for their appointments in the emergency center. She asked the young patients to come in close and encouraged them to sing along. Martinez then took to the floors and sang holiday carols to patients on the inpatient units.

Martinez will soon play the leading role in Madame Butterfly at the Houston Grand Opera.