Heart of a HeroDecember 5, 2009 in Crafts, Creativity, Current Affairs, Family, Friendship, Quilting, Quotes
Sometimes we don’t think about some of the agony that volunteers and people who serve others can feel. However, a letter I received from the founder of American Hero Quilts reminded me of that. We featured this organization in our newest book “I Care with Quilts” and as a thank you to Sue Nebeker, the founder I sent her a couple autographed copies of the book. Here is an excerpt from the letter she sent to me.
“I wanted to tell you a little bit about the arrival of your unexpected package and what a gift it was on a very difficult day. The day started with a phone call letting me know that a young Marine I had come to know had succumbed during a facial reconstructive surgery. I then sent off three quilts to a family where their daddy had been killed. We packed the car with 100 quilt to go to Madigan (Army Medical Center ) and another 25 to be mailed to our wounded service men and women getting care in other states. In truth I arrived home quite depressed and once again wondering how I could continue this. My friend and volunteer greeted me at the door with a huge smile and your book. This was just the medicine I needed.”
The message was clear – the volunteers who give their heart and soul to look out for others, need us to look out for them too. It really can make a difference.
KRIS WINS!!!May 21, 2009 in Current Affairs, Television
Great Day for a Ribbon CuttingApril 30, 2009 in Current Affairs, Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores, Media
My ongoing recovery from the long winter was enhanced even a little more when I got to visit Jensen Beach, Florida for a JoAnn Store Grand Opening. Not only were the temperatures toasty, but I was also greeted by about 60 very warm and sunny locals that showed up with some very friendly “Hello’s” and to witness the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony. This shy, but darling little girl came by (okay, she might have been nudged a little by her grandmother and seamstress whiz) to model her dress that was made out of my fabric. I maneuvered the biggest pair of Fiskars on the planet to slice in half the ribbon that had been pieced together out of some of my fabrics. It was very satisfying! Thank you Florida for supporting this very busy Grand Opening Event.
8 to 80 in Seven Days or LessApril 23, 2009 in Current Affairs
A week ago I woke up to an unusually bright reflection peeking around my bedroom drapes. I slid on my slippers and stumbled over to pull the drape open to see what was going on. I literally gasped when I discovered 8 inches of snow had fallen over night. I double-checked my calendar and it was indeed April. Still in a state of disbelief I dug out my snow boots that I had already put away in my off-season closet.
The next day Sam Champion of Good Morning America featured Spokane and our unusual snowfall which did give me some level of satisfaction. He announced to the world that we had broken our all-time record for snowfall at 100 inches for the season. All our complaining about the weather had now been affirmed. And now the ironic thing is a mere 7 days later it’s nearly 80 degrees! Aw, spring…….you might be shoveling snow one day and digging out your shorts the next.
Live a Little Bit GreenerApril 19, 2009 in Current Affairs, Holidays, Well-Being
Is it Funny OR Scary?October 24, 2008 in Crafts, Creativity, Current Affairs
Tie me Kangeroo Down Sport!October 13, 2008 in Current Affairs, Friendship
Former staff member Kat recently moved to Douglas, Arizona to pursue a teaching career. The other morning while getting ready for school her little boy double-taked a very unfamiliar sight. Kat grabbed her camera and captured a photo as evidence. When they tried to report it to the police, they got hung up on - assuming it was a "Drunk-Dial." She mentioned the incident to her 3rd graders and one bright little lad mentioned there was a Fair in town with an Australian exhibit. Low and behold her student got a "A" for keen observation because one of the kangeroos had indeed escaped. I loved the irony of the Pet Signs next to the stray Kangeroo. I bet Jay Leno would have loved to get his hands on this photo!
Back in Business & Easier to NavigateAugust 8, 2008 in Current Affairs, Technology
You may have noticed that for several weeks our shopping cart has been on vacation. Vacation is over and we’re back in business. Although many of the updates are “behind the scenes” - as a result, the cart is now more user-friendly. You’ll find larger images and the products are better organized for your shopping ease. For instance if you go to “Scrapbooking” – that will give you subcategories of Accessories, Albums, Paper and Stickers. Hopefully, this will make it easier if you’re looking for something specific. So, please browse the aisles and I hope you find some great treasures. Good news – all our 2009 Calendars are now in stock. If you’re one of the many who were looking for a 2008 Engagement Calendar, we listened to your requests and I’m pleased to announce that the 2009 Engagement Calendar is now available through our site. Take a look!
Idol Gives BackApril 10, 2008 in Current Affairs
I hope you got to watch Idol Gives Back last night. There are so many positive benefits to witnessing a show like this. First of all a well orchestrated opportunity to corral the power of many to serve our world and battle the injustice of poverty. They made it clear to us that no matter how much you are able to give - that it would be meaningful because it will be pooled together to make a real impact. It's hard to watch this and not be hit with the marked contrast between our lives and the devastation that millions live with. It really does shift the focus from myself and my problems and issues and helps me realize that by contrast - I really am okay. I have clean water to drink and comfortable shelter and the money to buy good quality food, medical and dental services, the medicines I need, and my family and friends are safe and healthy too. And, I'm not living in fear that at any moment these priviledges and securities will be pulled out from under me.
Annie Lenox (who Bono aptly described as an angel) probably moved me the most. She introduced us to to five children living in Africa who have lost their parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles (anyone who might have cared for them) all to HIV Positive. The oldest, a 15 year old boy took care of himself and the other children while having to bottle in his fears of being able to hold everything together for his younger siblings. The weight of that responsibility while barely surviving a life of poverty and rampant illness is unfathomable.
Even though there is so much to accomplish, the show and celebrities showcased many of the programs that are in place and how the dollars we gave last year are being utilized to improve and save people's lives. Alicia Keye's commented that you can "Change the lives of people FOREVER for the price of a pair of shoes." I think I could give up buying a pair of shoes to change a life.
Even Simon was inspiring - to see his tender and caring side is uplifting. Sometimes, it's just awareness that makes the difference. I remember watching the show last year. It was clear that he didn't realize how bad it was for so many people.
So many of us watch this show religiously as bystanders and become involved by discussing the drama and the performances purely for our own entertainment. This is a chance to watch and now discuss how we don't have to be just a bystander. You can so easily be involved by sharing just a little of what you have. I hope all my blog friends will take this opportunity to Give Back and make a difference. Keith Urban said it well, "Tonight you can save a Life, tomorrow you can change the World."
BOOBIES – Hug them-Love them-Save themApril 4, 2008 in Current Affairs, Well-Being
“BOOBIES – Hug them-Love them-Save them”
We’re wearing them in support of “Race for the Cure” on April 20 here in Spokane. Our Monica (center in photos) put a team together to walk the race, but she didn’t stop there. She and her team (Team GiGi) have created these t-shirts, tanks, necklaces, buttons & bumper stickers to raise additional funds. All proceeds taken in will be donated to the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. Monica, in shock by her Mother’s recent diagnosis of Breast Cancer was inspired to raise money for Breast Cancer research and awareness as a way to feel like there was something she could do to make a difference. The good news is that her Mom (who goes by the nickname, Gigi) recently finished chemotherapy and is doing very well. We, here at DM Studio are very proud and inspired by Monica for being proactive and also for using just the right touch of gentle humor to deal with a scary diagnosis. So many of us have experienced a family member or friend who has dealt with the devastation of Breast Cancer and/or live with the fear of negative results from a Mammogram. My mother very bravely dealt with this diagnosis 5 years ago. It was a mammogram that revealed her cancer. The good news is that it was caught early which made the prognosis as well as the treatment a little less traumatic. So remember the slogan, “BOOBIES – Hug them-Love them-Save them” and do your exams and get your Mammograms. Check out this link if you’d like to support Team GiGi or get a t-shirt. Grace and Blessings to all who have suffered.
We've been called to the MountainApril 26, 2007 in Current Affairs
I'm still watching the American Idol Gives Back. (In fact Celine Dion just finished her duet with Elvis) It's been quite a show.
I had a dollar number in mind that I was planning to donate when the program began. Facts I learned about the death rate of children as a result of poverty, malaria and other illness all are so shocking. To see their sad, vacant eyes just breaks your heart. More exposure to and understanding of these devastating lives and worlds have educated me more about how dire these conditions are. The unbearable weight of endless sadness, the eyes that look mostly down to the ground, the hearts that appear to have no hope. As I continued to watch all the stories and visits, I realized that I could do better. I took the number that I originally had planned to donate and multiplied it by 10. I guess, I might challenge you to reconsider increasing your bid too.
Dr. Phil said, "You never stand so tall, as when you stoop to help a child."
There are so many children living with extreme poverty, and dire illness, and the constant threat of death. Not to mention, sick children from all over our world, are barely surviving without medicine, health care givers and facilities, and parents to care for them. They are living without education, homes, food and sadly they exist without hope. There is virtually not even one aspect of their lives that I could remotely compare to my life. (or any one else's that I know)
My donation was a start for sure. Let this become the beginning of being better caretakers of those who need our help. Whenever you give, in any capacity, it is Universal Law that it will come back to you.
American Idol is a show I follow religiously, but consider it a guilty pleasure at best. But now, I'm proud that this became a vehicle for raising awareness as well as the kind of funds that can make a difference. And that, I'm proud to be a part of.
God Bless us everyone.April 17, 2007 in Current Affairs
I am deeply saddened and quietly weeping for the tragedy of yesterday on the Virginia Tech Campus. The how and why are truly beyond our comprehension. I find myself projecting a little, by imagining the "what if" my son went to school there. And then the wonderment again about just how safe are our College Campuses? The feeling that results from that is really all about fear. And fear is powerful. As a nation and as a world we feel the collective pain and a heightened sense of fear. For the students and families that were directly involved - I just can't even grasp their feelings of horror.
Wherever you are, what ever you are doing, no matter how lost you must feel.......wise ones remind us that, "this too shall pass." When you are ready, (which may be today, tomorrow, or months from now) shift your mind to find a way to accept what happened and and work up the determination to move forward as a joyful being once again.
My approach is to be very thankful for the safety of my son, his friends, and of course for everyone in our lives. This is a day that also contains much beauty. Search for this too, you will always find beauty no matter what.
My prayers for great strength and blessings go out to families who are suffering. And if your world is pretty sane and intact - this is a wonderful time to express your gratitude.
Peace and Goodwill to all mankind, Debbie
Met a Sports Celeb!January 22, 2007 in Current Affairs
Oh, the power of a star! I'm not exactly what you would call a big sports fan. However, the other evening I was out to eat with some good friends.....and we were "taken" by a celebrity sighting. We noticed one of the star basketball players from our Gonzaga University team was at the table next to us. Throughout the evening we debated, "Do you think it's really him?; Should we ask for his autograph?; Do you think he would mind having his picture taken with us?".....Finally, the moment of truth came. He was getting up to leave. Without a second to spare, I asked, "Sean, would you mind having a picture taken with us?" "I'd be happy to," he replied. So, if you follow College basketball, you might have heard of the Gonzaga Bulldogs, and if you're a Gonzaga fan, you'll definitely know of Sean Mallon. Here's a photo with me, Sean, and one of my dearest friends, Crystal.