Mason’s Toy Box started when a young man named Mason, lost his battle to rare childhood cancer in 2011.

The truth is that not all children will be home for the holiday season, as my family as experienced in 2008 as my son was fighting for his life after his liver transplant.

Parents will choose to be by the side of their child instead of heading out to the stores shopping for the gifts under the tree. My own family postponed Christmas because everyone agreed it wouldn’t be one without Lennon being home.

“Every year I remember the dark road we had to travel where everything was so unfamiliar and unknown about my son’s future. I reflected on some old blog posts I had written over Christmas that year and Christmas wasn’t even mentioned. I was so wrapped up in my son’s care who was fighting for his life so incredibly hard that I was merely thinking about how alone my other kids may be at home.”

Petra Monaco – 2013

The goal is to assist parents in delivering toys to children who are in the hospital and reduce the extra stress that this time of year can bring – especially when you have children at home.

Volunteers dress up as elves with Santa in tow to deliver toys to the hospitals in the surrounding area from Richmond to Roanoke.

And you can find out who they serve, and how to get involved by following this link!

“…how important it is to be remembered… as you get to sit at home, have an amazing meal and spend it with the ones you love. And while we sit in the hospital quietly hoping we too could be at home, we hold vigil over our children, pray to the powers that be that we one day get to go home at all. But most importantly being remembered as we do just that, it is incredibly nice to be remembered by family and even strangers.”

Petra Monaco – 2013