Reading Through the NICU


Meet the Ward Family

Little Ward Books is a family owned publishing company. Our mission is to raise awareness about the NICU experience and provide comfort to those on their own NICU journey.

Our 3 children went through the neonatal intensive care unit and we strive to be a resource to encourage others on their own journey through the NICU and beyond.

What is the N.I.C.U?

N.I.C.U. stands for Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. This unit is a department in a hospital that specializes in the care of ill or premature newborn babies.

The term neonatal stands for the first 28 days of life.

According to the March of Dimes, one in ten babies is born preterm and might require admittance into the NICU, but not all babies in the NICU are premature.

A premature baby is a baby born prior to a gestational age of 37 weeks.

About Our Book

Our NICU Journey

Our NICU journey is an inspiring children's book and keepsake that follows first time parents as their children find the strength, courage, and perseverance to come home.

The illustrations are created from real photographs of the NICU and of real members of neonatal medical teams.

This book is perfect for an uplifting gift for new NICU parents, NICU graduates, and healthcare professionals or supporters who are dedicated to this fragile community.

A Love Letter to the NICU Community

Our NICU Journey is a love letter to your NICU miracle and to NICU families. Remember that you are not alone.

Great For Parents of Multiples

This book is perfect for parents with one child or multiples.

Perfect Keepsake or Going Home Gift

Record special details about your journey, document special first, and remember your healthcare team with signature pages

Personalize Your Book

Personalize your book by documenting your family's journey.

Record Important Milestones

Celebrate each victory by recording your miracle's special firsts

Remember Your Team

Remember the ones who helped bring your little one(s) home. Pages dedicated to Guests and Health Team Members make this book a favored NICU keepsake

*Hardcover is now available through the Beads of Courage® gift shop*

Please contact for bulk orders:

Also available online through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and


Sarah Ward writes a charming and loving account of her premature twins' NICU stay. With rhyme and dignity, she reveals the depth and strength of their journey. This book is a blessing to all the families affected by premature birth and she brings strength and hope to them. The watercolor illustrations are a beautiful complement to the deeply emotional story. Written as a love poem to the children, Our NICU Journey will be treasured for years. The resources listed at the end of the book and the journaling pages will be most helpful to families experiencing this process. Kudos to Sarah Ward for her efforts to bring hope and strength to others!

Elizabeth S.

Amazon Review

"As a fellow NICU parent seeing that someone took their struggles and made them into a supportive book is truly amazing! I am proud to have been given the option to read this book and will recommend to fellow NICU parents for years to come!"

Amber M.

Nicu Parent

"Our NICU Journey is a sweet NICU book for families to read to any child. Whether or not you have a NICU baby, you can enjoy this story and your children will too. Spreading awareness on NICU stays is very important and this is why I love this book. I also love the literature, it rhymes! Super cute book art to capture the attention of little eyes, short and sweet."

NICU.mamas Foundation

Parent of a NICU graduate

We would love to hear from you!

Feel free to leave a review on Amazon, Goodreads, or share a photo on our social media page.


Beads of Courage®

The Beads of Courage® program provides children and their family a visual representation of their treatment history. It's purpose is to help survivors see their journey in a tangible form. We are partnering with this amazing nonprofit to share our story. Click below for more information.

March of Dimes

49% of NICU patience are born premature. Our twins were born at the gestational age of 28 weeks and March of Dimes provided comfort and care throughout our entire stay at the hospital. For more information about premature birth and ways you can help please visit March of Dimes.

Mothers' Milk Bank

Mother's Milk Bank at Austin provides vital human milk to fragile infants in NICUs across the world. All three of our NICU graduates received donor milk to increase their chance at survival. We were fortunate enough to give back to the program.. If you are eligible please consider donation.

Purple Butterfly Project

The Purple Butterfly Project created the symbol to signify the loss of multiple and is dedicated to working with bereaved parents.

Reading To Your Baby

Reading to your newborn in the NICU can help with neurological development and helps soothe. Read all of the benefits to reading to your baby.


Medela is a valuable resource in the NICU and beyond for breastfeeding products and lactation support. For details more about Medela visit their website.

These resources were helpful during our time in the NICU.

Please see our community section for a growing list of resources available to you!

Reading Through the NICU

What to read to my baby?

Reading Through the NICU will be in our stories on our social media platforms. We will feature some of our favorite books that we read during our NICU stays, as well as some new books that will be available for free on kindle. Feel free to browse our picks on facebook and instagram.


For any inquiries or bulk orders please contact Little Ward Books.

Join Our Mailing List For Updates

Follow Us On Social Media

The mission of Beads of Courage, Inc. (a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization) is to provide innovative arts-in-medicine programs for children coping with serious illness, their families, and the clinicians who care for them.

Through Beads of Courage® we help children Record, Tell and Own their Story of Courage. Through the Beads of Courage® Program, children receive colorful beads that symbolize each step of their treatment journey. The beads they receive provide a powerful dose of narrative medicine that visually translates their treatment experience and helps them cope with the many uncertainties of their treatment journey. Every bead makes visible the otherwisethey receive provide a powerful dose of narrative medicine that visually translates their treatment experience and helps them cope with the many uncertainties of their treatment journey. Every bead makes visible the otherwise invisible. Beads of Courage® serve as metaphors that help the child and their family derive meaning from their experience, and help them connect to others in their life that might otherwise never comprehend all that they have been through.

Beads of Courage® Programs currently support more than 300 participating member hospitals in the United States, Japan, New Zealand, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Australia.

To learn more please visit: