When I first found out I was pregnant with Charlotte, I immediately started planning the nursery. Because I didn't know whether I was having a boy or a girl yet, I went neutral and based the colors on a bedding set I found with giraffes, elephants, monkeys. Then we found out we were having a girl and giraffes quickly became her "animal" and her nursery was filled with outfits with giraffes on them, stuffed animals, art work, etc.
Fast forward to the day Charlotte was born: her nana (Sam's mom) brought her a gift which contained a little giraffe plush (above) and for her nine days of life, that giraffe hardly left her side --- if she was in her isolette, her giraffe wasn't far away; if she was being held, her giraffe was right there with her. And when we went home without our baby girl, this giraffe was close to us & brought us a little comfort during the harder times.
Today, this same giraffe sits on a hutch in our living/dining room. When people ask about it's significance, we tell them it's "our Charlotte giraffe" and are able to share our story. It's not a big gesture or memorial, but it's something that makes us think of our baby girl whenever it catches our eye. And for me, that's enough.
We wanted to include Charlotte in our family photos this fall by incorporating her giraffe.