The neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) can be a place of great stress and worry for parents, but the NICU at St. Luke Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, has a bit more happy Halloween cheer, thanks to a kindhearted group of volunteers who created some itty-bitty costumes for the hospital’s tiniest patients. 
The gifted March of Dimes volunteers crafted the costumes from felt and glue in a controlled room in the hospital to ensure it was safe and sanitary for the premature newborns.
If you can’t imagine anything cuter than a tiny baby, well, imagine a pint-size Superman, Batman, ladybug, or butterfly. The delicate garb takes some of the attention away from the tubes and wires flowing in and out of the cradles and incubators.
Hospital spokeswoman Michelle Manuel said:
“Families in our NICU may spend weeks or months here, and it can be an emotional time.
Providing an opportunity for them to celebrate Halloween with their little ones allows them a sense of normalcy, and to celebrate their baby’s first milestones, which is what every family wants to do.” 
Three volunteer photographers were on-hand at St. Luke to capture the costumed babies in their full, adorable splendor, including Emmalee Schaumburg, who last year began photographing babies every other month. 
Schaumburg’s own daughter – who will soon celebrate her 3rd birthday – was born prematurely at 3 pounds and 6 ounces, so she understands what NICU parents go through. She said:
“Now that she’s 2 and a half, I am so glad I can go back and look at those pictures and see how far she’s come. It’s so important to remember how far these babies have come.” 
Thirty-five families currently have babies in the NICU at St. Luke, and not only do their tiny blessings get Halloween costumes, the families themselves also receive a “Trick or Treat, smell my feet” card with their baby’s footprints, and a hand-crocheted pumpkin filled with treats and a Halloween book. 
The NICU staff is already dreaming up sweet ideas to make the rest of the holiday season a bit more fun for the families. 
 USA Today
||Julie Fidler is a freelance writer, legal blogger, and the author of Adventures in Holy Matrimony: For Better or the Absolute Worst. She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and two ridiculously spoiled cats. She occasionally pontificates on her blog.