Feeling thankful during a family crisis. By: Lolladad - lollaland

Feeling thankful during a family crisis. By: Lolladad

Thanksgiving week is one of my favorite weeks of the year.  What is better for your soul than thinking about all the things you are grateful for?  Also, who doesn’t love that it is perfectly acceptable to spend 7 straight days obsessing about gorging yourself all night?

That being said, this year’s Thanksgiving is bittersweet for our family.  Hanna has been suffering all year with a severe skin condition for the past 9 months (link to blog post).  I can’t even begin to imagine how I would handle being in that much pain every morning, noon, and night for such an extended period of time.  Luckily we have had amazing support.  We moved into my parents’ house (thanks mom!) for 6 months because Hanna was unable to properly care for our newborn and our friends would send food and flowers on a weekly basis (best friends ever).  Yet, even though we feel incredibly blessed, it has been difficult to deal with the countless nights of crying and feeling utterly helpless.

While I was exhibiting at a tradeshow in Las Vegas last month, I was beginning to feel sorry for myself.  Even though I didn’t show it, having to deal with this major adjustment in our lives while struggling to grow this small business was starting to affect my mental state… Until I met Bill.

Bill and Mark meet in Las Vegas at the ABC Kids Expo. Baby Face Band and Lollacup meet!

Lollacup + Baby Face Band meet in Las Vegas at the ABC Kid's Expo

Bill is the owner of Baby Face Band, a very useful item that allows you to personalize your child’s cup or bottle by putting the picture of your child on a band that goes around bottle.  It makes perfect sense because your kid could easily identify his/her cup without having to know how to read!

Bill approached me in Las Vegas to talk about my experience on Shark Tank.  I was more than happy to talk about our journey and when I asked him about his story, I learned that we had a lot in common.  Baby Face Band was created by his wife, Laura, they were in contact with Shark Tank, and they also have three young children.  It’s almost like we were the same family except in different states!

But as the conversation went on I learned that Bill had lost his wife to cancer just about a year ago and that he was exhibiting at the show to keep her vision alive.  As soon as he shared this with me it took every muscle in my body from dropping to my knees and crying for him.  Immediately, I felt a rush of guilt for feeling so sorry for myself while Bill, who has the biggest smile in the US, is juggling his business and his kids without his wife. For the past month, I’ve been thinking and praying for Bill and his family.  We’ve only been in touch a few times since I met him in Las Vegas but his story has given me a lot of perspective.  I really admire his strength and I’m hoping to learn how to be as positive as he is.  I will definitely spend this Thanksgiving thanking my lucky stars and hugging my family members as hard as I can.  

Lollaland + Baby Face Band Giveaway!

To enter: Send good thoughts to Bill and his three young children during the holidays and enter either Red, Green, Blue, or Pink.  We will choose 4 lucky winners (Ends Dec 1, 2013) to get a free lollacup and matching Baby Face Band.  Happy Thanksgiving!  

Here it is in action: (picture of adorable baby not included)

Baby Face Band + Lollacup



Chad Riddersen
Chad Riddersen

Author



55 Responses

Patricia Oliver
Patricia Oliver

July 02, 2015

I’ve purchased three of your cups & we all love them! These little personalized bands look so cute – would live to get them too!

Elaine S.
Elaine S.

July 02, 2015

You are an inspiration Bill! Thinking of you and your family this thanksgiving! Good reminder to have much to be thankful for every year no matter what the circumstance !

Alexandra Pitcher
Alexandra Pitcher

July 02, 2015

Bill & family,

Losing a loved one is never easy; it sounds like your wife and mother was the type of woman that moved mountains. I hope during this holiday season you can find the peace to reflect on her life and all the joy she brought to you every day. I know grief can be overwhelming, but know that there are people all over the country thinking about you and sending good thoughts your way; she will never be forgotten and her legacy lives on.

Alex
(Green)

Amanda W.
Amanda W.

July 02, 2015

I wish Bill and his three lovely children a wonderful holiday season. A season of remembering their Mommy and all the great memories they created with her, and also a time to create new memories and traditions with Dad.

Eunice
Eunice

July 02, 2015

Praying blessings on the baby face band family and business!!

Oh, and pink for us! :)

Erin Ensley
Erin Ensley

July 02, 2015

Thank you for the reminder to reflect on the many blessings we do have during this time of year. Thinking of all those who are missing someone as we approach this holiday season.
Happy Thanksgiving!
Erin

P.S.- Green!

Mia
Mia

July 02, 2015

Thinking about your family and Bill’s family. Love your cups!! Thank you for sharing the Baby Band Face product and their story.

Tracy P.
Tracy P.

July 02, 2015

Sending good vibes to Bill and his family!!!!!!

- Blue :)

Candace P
Candace P

July 02, 2015

Thank you for sharing this story. I wish Bill and his family strength and that he is blessed with many happy memories to give him reasons to keep smiling. You are also a beautiful family, just from reading your posts and stories. We absolutely love your Lollacups, you stand behind quality & made in the USA! Our little guy has 2 so far and we use them everyday all day. His favorite color is Green

emily
emily

July 02, 2015

I will be in prayer for your family during this time. So glad that the Lord has been able to take care of you guys. Praying everything soon gets better. Youa re a greatfamily and your cups are absolutely amazing.

Shana smith
Shana smith

July 02, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving to you as well! Good reminder of what this holiday really is! Spending and enjoying time with family!
Ps-PINK

Michelle
Michelle

July 02, 2015

Bill & Family, Sending good wishes your way this holiday season. Good luck continuing your wife’s vision with Baby Face Band!

Our triplets have lollacups on their Christmas lists! We love green.

Heidi
Heidi

July 02, 2015

Thanks for posting this. A good reminder this time of year (and all year long). Sending prayers to your family and to Bill’s.

Ps- green

Danielle Martins
Danielle Martins

July 02, 2015

Bill,

I’m so sorry for the loss of your wife and your children’s mother. There will never be a replacement! I too suffered an irreplaceable loss last year. My mother, very unexpectedly passed away 18 months ago. My heart aches for her everyday and couldn’t imagine what you are going through. Be strong for your children and give them the love that their mother would’ve. Wishing you all the success in the world with your business!
BLUE

Beth
Beth

July 02, 2015

Another great reminder to be thankful this holiday season and all year round. Sending lots of positive thoughts to Bill and his family.

Thanks for the great giveaway. Love the idea behind the bands and will be sharing your site with all my mommy friends.

-Beth
(green)

Nellie
Nellie

July 02, 2015

막키야!
Praying for Hanna (we NEED to talk, I might be able to help!) and praying for Bill! I love you like a brother! Thank you for sharing! 사랑!

Mackenzie
Mackenzie

July 02, 2015

Thanks for sharing that story. Bill is an inspiration!!! His wife would be so proud of him and the legacy he is continuing in her honor. I wish Bill and his family blessings through the holiday season!!!

(Pink)

Alison
Alison

July 02, 2015

Peace that passes all understanding, comfort and joy to Bill and his children this holiday season!

(Blue for us!)

Alexandria Bauer
Alexandria Bauer

July 02, 2015

Our thoughts and prayers to Bill and his children. Many blessings to yours as well, Mark.

P.S. Pink

Stephanie
Stephanie

July 02, 2015

Praying for Bill and his family…praying for strength, love to his family, and for his business (keep Laura’s vision alive)…his story reminds us to cherish every moment with our family/friends and tell/show them how much you love them everyday.
I will definitely give my daughter and husband hug bear hugs and kisses when I get home tonight.

Pink

Alex
Alex

July 02, 2015

To Bill and his three children: I send you blessing for your future and strength to go through one of the hardest things to do in life. Although your wife is watching you and probably aware of the work you are doing to keep her memory alive.
On another note: Great idea with the picture in the band! looks lovely.
BLUE

Esther Chung ha
Esther Chung ha

July 02, 2015

Bill, you are inspiring. Reading your story encourages me to be thankful in all circumstances. I’m sure your wife is proud of you and how you’re taking care of the kids. May God fill you with peace and joy this holiday season while you’re surrounded by family and friends.

P.s. Red, please.

lollaland
lollaland

July 02, 2015

A very special person told us to never trivialize our own struggles just because it isn’t as serious or difficult as others. We thought just like you Liz. I would always ask myself, “how can we complain when so and so…” It’s been tough but we’ve tried to respect everyone’s struggles including our own.

I’m really sorry for you and your daughter and even though eczema or what Hanna has isn’t the worst thing on earth to have, it does affect your daily life physically and mentally. Thinking of you and your family too! Please please read as much as you can about the long term effects of topical/oral steroids.

Karina Coleman
Karina Coleman

July 02, 2015

Blessings on both your families. Bill and his children to make it through the tough times, and on your family with hope that they find something to help Hannah manage the pain soon.

Karina
(blue)

megann
megann

July 02, 2015

Happy thanksgiving to lolacup & babyface. what and inspiration you both are. and a great example of strength bill. ive heard people say in response to ‘’i cant imagine how that must feel’’ ‘’-well just try to imagine, it will make you appreciate what you do have that much more.’’ i wish you and your kids the happiest of thanksgivings and that you would feel your wife with you. that you would grow stronger each year, and more full of thankfulness for the company you both started together. thank you for the giveaway chance! we have an orange lola cup, i think green would be a nice addition :)

liz smith
liz smith

July 02, 2015

My daughter has eczema too – and it does seems like the worst thing ever until someone else’s health concerns put things into perspective. But we really love coconut oil and are so glad Costco carries it! Would love a lollacup – blue! would be great but we’ll take any color – i have a son too but my daughter loves blue anyway.
love the baby face band too!

Kelly
Kelly

July 02, 2015

Bill, my heart goes out to you and your family. I can’t imagine how it feels to experience such a loss, but it sounds like your children have a wonderful dad to give them all of the love and care they need! Wishing you all a happy holiday season, and continued success with your business.

And best wishes to the Lim family as well! I hope that Hanna finds relief soon, and that you all have a peaceful and prosperous holiday season (and new year).

All my best,
Kelly R, Prep Class of ’01
(We would love to add a pink Lollacup to our little flock!)

Michele Sipolt Kapustka
Michele Sipolt Kapustka

July 02, 2015

Mark – you are an incredible story teller – this entry is so well written and gets to the heart of the matter. Blessed to have you in my life. FOR SURE I am thankful for that. And remember, middle children ROCK. Just a shameless plug for my girl!!!

Beth Barnhill
Beth Barnhill

July 02, 2015

Love the bands…as a daycare teacher too many kids have the same cup and inchbug bands…I love the bands, but a picture would allowe even for the one year olds to keep cup seperate…and help out substitutes!! Awesome Idea! Hope to see you be able to fulfill your wife’s dreams…what an honor and a privieledge that would be!

Brittany Smith
Brittany Smith

July 02, 2015

I hope you and your family have a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving! Sending prayers for Hanna’s healing. (pink)

Erin Lewis
Erin Lewis

July 02, 2015

Thoughts and prayers to Bill and his family as well as to all who may be struggling with loss. As another poster said, it is an inspiring story – positive realities need to be shared more often and good for Lollaland to do so! -Red

Jenn S
Jenn S

July 02, 2015

my heart goes out to him! we <3 the red.

Kristen
Kristen

July 02, 2015

Prayers and blessings to Bill and his family this holiday season.

(Pink)

Cori
Cori

July 02, 2015

Thoughts and prayers to Bill & his family. Thank you for sharing. Crossing my fingers for Green!! Happy Thanksgiving!!

Kelly
Kelly

July 02, 2015

Praying for Bill and his family as they go through the holidays this year!

Kelly
(Green)

Glen C.
Glen C.

July 02, 2015

Sending positive thoughts to Bill and the family. Teared up reading your story. Wishing you all a wonderful Thanksgiving. You are an inspiration.

Hope you have a blessed time, Lim family. Thanks for posting Bill’s story.

Jeff
Jeff

July 02, 2015

Bill – praying for continued strength with your family and abundant success with your Business!! God is good!

RED

Michelle
Michelle

July 02, 2015

Meeting Bill must have been great as he appears to be the young to the amazing Lollacup yang. His wife will be smiling to know her idea has a great fit on the great Cup we love! Great idea Bill. Thanks Lollaland for sharing!

Carrie
Carrie

July 02, 2015

Thoughts and prayers to Bill and his family. What an inspiration, I know his wife is proud! You all are inspirations too, what a great family. Your girls will grow up to be wonderful women because they have such amazing parents :) Happy thanksgiving! Xo, your friends at i play. Ps blue for FWE ;)

Jeanie
Jeanie

July 02, 2015

Blessings to both your families!
(green)

Susan
Susan

July 02, 2015

You are an inspiration to anyone who hears your story. Your wife is smiling down from heaven on you and the children. RED

Tasha
Tasha

July 02, 2015

Thank you so much for sharing this! Wishing you all peace and strength to get through your journey and may the love and support of your families sustain you. God bless you all!
(Pink, please.)

Katie
Katie

July 02, 2015

Sending many blessings your way this holiday season!! Happy Thanksgiving!!
Katie – Pink :)

Terri Gudowicz
Terri Gudowicz

July 02, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving to the “Lollaland” family, and to Bill and his children. Keep the memories alive in your children by talking of their mother often. God Bless

blue

Susan Hudacek
Susan Hudacek

July 02, 2015

You are an inspiration to anyone who hears your story. Your wife is smiling down from heaven on you and the children.

Liz
Liz

July 02, 2015

Dear Bill & family,

Happy Thankgsgiving! I am so touched and encouraged to hear about your story. I will keep you and your family in my prayers! Sending you many blessings this holiday season to your family and your growing business

Tracy
Tracy

July 02, 2015

Prayers to you and yours. You are truly an inspiration. God bless.

Pink

francine
francine

July 02, 2015

Good luck & great strength to both of you & your families. With your families behind you you will be able to make it through these difficult times. We have had a tough year this year as well, but a new year is upon us and with it comes more change, but hopefully growth & peace.

The Lolla Cup is our favorite sippy of all time!!! We had it even before we saw you on Shark Tank!

Pink Please!

Danielle
Danielle

July 02, 2015

Thinking and praying for Bill and his family. We are facing our first Thanksgiving and Christmas without our infant who passed away this summer. Missing a loved one is extremely painful each day but even more so during the holidays.

lollaland
lollaland

July 02, 2015

PS. If you share the name of a winner but did not receive an email… it’s because we only have your first names.. sorry! =(

lollaland
lollaland

July 02, 2015

We are so thankful for such heart warming comments, thoughts and prayers!

Congrats to our four winners!
Pink – Katie
Green – Beth
Blue – Terri
Red – Jenn

I will email you to get your address. You can see how we drew our winners! =)
http://instagram.com/p/hbXoIpF_Pw/

Stephanie
Stephanie

July 02, 2015

What an inspiration you are Bill! Sending warm wishes for a happy holiday season to you and your kids. Love the Baby Face Band Idea! Even better with the Lollacup! (Pink)

Erica Routley
Erica Routley

July 02, 2015

My Prayers Go Out 2 You And Your Family May You Have A Blessed Holiday (Green) Please

G
G

July 02, 2015

I wonder if your wife is suffering from a mite called Demodex. It can cause severe rash and itching. One way to see if she has it is to put a small amount of tea tree oil on a non-facial area. The next day you will see tiny white hairlike extrusions from the hair follicles—dead mites. Any dermatologist can help you with prescription cream
and oral medication. Body Shop makes a nice line of tea tree oil skin care products, and Paul Mitchell makes a nice tea tree bar soap. Best wishes.

Charity
Charity

July 02, 2015

I remember seeing Lollacup on Shark Tank, and I’m thrilled you and my friend, Bill found each other at the trade show. My prayer for months (unbeknownst to Bill) has been that The Lord would grow Baby Face Bands to great success, not only to provide for Bill and the kids, but to carry on Laura’s beautiful legacy! I wish great success to you both!

Leave a comment