I had 12 wonderful years with my beautiful, brave son, Gavin. Unfortunately, along with the good times we had days, months and ultimately years in and out of hospitals as we battled his rare form of CVID. With IVs and PICC lines we found it impossible for him to wear long sleeves. I came up with idea to keep him covered by creating fun fleece poncho capes for him to wear during his weekly infusions or while in the hospital attached to IVs. From this journey sprang the idea of Cape Ivy. My experience as a patient care giver, advocate and parent has given me a perspective that few have.

Gavin at age 11

Easy To Use and Warm:

I created fun fleece poncho capes for him to slip over his head. They do not interfere with access to ports and IV lines. He was cozy in bed and no more cold walks down hospital corridors. The large pocket in front warms hands and holds precious items like phones or hand held gaming devices.

Easy Care:

Fleece is 100% polyester and requires no ironing. Washing in cold with like colors and drying on LOW is all that is needed. We spent months at a time in the hospital and I was able to wash the poncho capes at the hospital. (Parent tip: all the hospitals we stayed at had laundry for patient use on the patient floors.) People who come to hospitals for a weekly or monthly infusions or dialysis can bring their ponchos and not rely of blankets that may not be washed regularly.

Out and About:

There were times when Gavin could go out of the hospital for a short trip. One time his older brothers brought the dogs for a visit in the hospital garage. (Parent tip: if you have a stay that lasts more than a few days, ask your assigned social worker nicely for parking passes and food vouchers. These expenses add up. It can’t hurt to ask!) These capes work well with wheelchairs too.

Hospital Deliveries:

I found that I was able to have packages delivered right to the hospital. We are happy to ship to hospital addresses. All we need is the patient’s name and the hospital address. They will get it to the right room. (Parent tip: food can also be delivered to hospitals by restaurant delivery services when you get tired of the cafeteria.)

Meg Smith