Exciting news around here: Extreme Makeover: Home Edition has chosen a family in the DFW area! My husband is involved in the PR for the seven-day building campaign, and I’m really excited to get to help photograph the event. The opportunity to document the build is even more special, as the mom selected for the makeover is a photographer.
If you are in the area, you can go by to visit the site at any time. The Wall Homes team is also still looking for donations. You can find all the information on the website about visiting and donating: http://extreme.wall.com. I’ll be sure to post links to any photos that I take that make the website, and after the show airs, I’ll probably add some more photos here.
And of course, I’ll probably be blogging my thoughts as the week progresses.
Some initial insights:
- When you see the Design Team knock on the door to surprise the family . . . the really are surprised! You are truly watching the moment when they find out they have been selected.
- I knew that the community building aspects of this show were strong, but I really appreciated the stories of community that my husband told from his meetings with the show producer.
- I’m surprised by the inability of the press to rise above affiliations to cover an uplifting story of community; a positive light among so much negative news.
Here’s a little bit more about the family :
The Augustin family from Keller, TX is an amazing family. Their world was first shaken after their son, now age 4, was born ten weeks prematurely. Amber Augustin, a professional photographer, knew after those anguishing weeks in the NICU, her family would never be the same. They had a new purpose… a new goal.
The Augustins are a proud “March of Dimes” family dedicated to the survival of premature babies. Because some premature babies don’t survive, Amber created a foundation called “Tiny Works of Heart”. She takes pictures of families and their fragile babies. For many families these pictures are treasured memories of their babies who had very brief lives. The photos, often as many as 1,200 per family, are all free. Amber will not accept money for her mission.
With full support from her family, Amber began working to give families something they were unaware they might miss. Her husband, Peter, knew the first time he saw Amber in the NICU passionately photographing the babies, he needed to make Amber’s newly found mission a priority. He bought her a new camera and converted the garage into a photography studio.
The family’s world was shaken again on Father’s day last year, when their home was overrun with flood waters. The Augustins were notified that the home, uninhabitable, would need to be raised over a foot in order to meet code. Monetarily, it was simply impossible for them. Their first home, one they remodeled over a twelve year period and welcomed their three children into, sits vacant.
Another Hero in the Home
Peter Augustin is a project leader for Habitat for Humanity. He won an award last year, the same year he lost his home, for his role in the charitable organization. He zealously built a home for someone else, while his family was homeless. Very few people knew his secret.
Tiny Works of Heart
“My work is hard and emotional. But, it’s not about me. It’s about them – the families and the babies.” – Amber Augustin