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Sunday, October 21, 2012

Happy Birthday

Today was a very special day.  Little Bear turned TWO!!  
What a great age, so full of exploration and learning...gaining independence and a personality starting to shine through...meeting milestone after milestone.  Two is Terrific!!  We celebrated in our hearts on her special day.

   There were cupcakes and a balloon...necessary items at a birthday.
 (Pictures to come...) 

 Presents to be purchased in her Birthday Auction. 

And friends and family...also good to have on your birthday.

The only thing missing? The. birthday. girl.  She spent the day alone, in an orphanage, on the other side of the world.  The last birthday spent alone though!  Next year, the celebration will be grand and best of all, it will include the most important piece.

This baby...

...is growing up.
Happy Birthday Little Bear!
I love you to the moon and back!


 


Monday, October 15, 2012

Birthday Party? Nope, try again.....Birthday AUCTION!!

     Okay, fundraiser number two...I'm having an online auction for L.  It will begin on October 21st, Little Bear's second birthday, and run for 10 days, through the end of the month.  

     Normally, for a birthday, if you're invited to a party you bring a birthday present.  This year, instead of giving presents to L for her birthday, we are selling presents for her birthday!  Really, the biggest present that could be asked for is for her to come HOME.  We know that will happen in God's time...and this will be her last birthday in that stinky orphanage!  

     The auction will run on Facebook, but will also be linked to this blog, so that those of you who do not use Facebook can still go shopping.  There will be items for anyone and everyone. It's a perfect excuse to start shopping for Christmas, for upcoming Fall or Winter birthdays, or for a little splurge for yourself! 

     And by you shopping at L's auction, you will help her move another step closer to coming home...

     And next year...we'll have the BIGGEST birthday bash a three year little girl has ever experienced!!

     The Birthday Auction is OPEN...Start your bidding!!!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Jewelry ROCKS!!!

This post is not really related to Down Syndrome (or well, maybe it can be...) and is not one of the two originally planned fundraisers for a little girl turning two this month but...it is fun news.

A friend of mine is co-partners in a jewelry business and also has a daughter with Down Syndrome (who I have determined is going to be L's future BFF...) Her business is called 'Jewelry Rocks'.  And for L...it did just that.  Rocked all through the month of September as part of their earnings were shared towards Little Bears 'break out' costs. 

The jewelry is pretty awesome! You should check it out at....
 
It was very nice to see L's FSP take a nice jump in one day! 
And to know that the people behind that jump, aren't helping 'just because', but are helping because they realize how special L is and already love her a lot even though they have never met her and how much it will mean for her to get busted out of that ol' orphanage and have a family of her very own. 
 
Thanks Jewelry Rocks,
You...ROCK!!!

Monday, October 1, 2012

October...a month of awareness and celebrations

   This is going to be a month of many things...awareness, pumpkins, trunk-or-treat, fundraisers, celebration and BIRTHDAYS!!! 
  
   October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month  I will be posting interesting facts, new information and uplifting stories all month long.  You can read the first post in regards to DS Awareness, HERE.
  

Pumpkins!!!


     October also means Pumpkins!  At our church we have a huge Pumpkin Patch that is run by our youth. (After being coordinated and then continually overseen by our Youth Director.  Could you just imagine what excitement could ensue when mixing teenagers and a field of pumpkins!?!)  Families from all over the Island come to our Patch to hunt and choose the perfect pumpkin. There are lots of 'Pictures in the Patch' and the feel of Fall is always in the air when you're walking through rows of pumpkins. This is also a fundraiser for our youth group as they earn points by working at the patch, which they can then cash in towards trips and outings throughout the year.  It's a win-win!!  As part of the pumpkin patch, we have a Pumpkin Fun Day.  Which is pretty self explanatory.  You spend the day, having fun, at a Pumpkin Patch, with pumpkins!  There will be food, games, food and lots of fun activities (and did I mention, food?) I CANNOT wait for next year when Little Bear will be running around choosing her perfect pumpkin and enjoying the fun of a pumpkin filled day!!   And at the end of the month, after the patch is closed down and the final pumpkins are hauled off the lot, we have a night of Treats and 'Trunks'?  Yep, you read that correctly.  We have Trunk or Treat for kiddos to don their first second third final choice of costume (No child ever changes their mind about what they want to be for gathering goodies, right?  Especially not within days of the actual treat gathering!) and go from 'trunk to trunk' gathering goodies.  I have wondered the aisles of many stores scanning the costumes for what could be the 'perfect' find for a certain little girl next year.  I suppose I'll let her have some input as to what she'd like to dress up as.  Though her cuteness will probably get her all the treats she could ever want!  There will be games, contests, pumpkins, fun and guess what...FOOD!  It will be treats all around!
   
    October also holds a very special birthday.  My Little Bear will be 2!  This is a big.deal.birthday, for a few different reasons.  First, uhm, 2 is just kind of a big deal.  At 2, you're not really a baby anymore, you kind of fall into the ranks of being a 'toddler'!  And, well, being a toddler is a big deal!  This birthday, turning two, will happen in an orphanage.  That is definitely a big deal.  There will not be a family to celebrate with or presents to open or cake to devour.  (Whoa...no cake...I know, REALLY big deal there!!)  Anyway, the biggest deal about this birthday is that it will be her LAST in an orphanage! and THAT is the BIGGEST deal of them all!!!  Though she doesn't know it, she has a family who will be celebrating on the other side of the world.  Celebrating her for all of her two 'long' years, celebrating that her birth mother chose life for L so she  and I could find each other and celebrating that next year, we'll have the biggest birthday bash EVER! Family and friends to party with, presents to open, cake (LOTS of cake) to devour and the big deal for her birthday next year...she'll be home!

    As this is such a special month, I have a little fundraiser (well two actually, but will tell you more about the second at another time) to share.  For the month of October, we are holding...'Loose Change for Lizzy'.  I will be passing out cups... placing them at local business, sharing them with friends, putting one on my own desk... to gather 'loose change'. (you know, those extra coins from your pocket, the change from your drive through lunch at Chick-fil-a, the 'found' dollar at the bottom of the dryer).  I'm positive, if L could tell you herself, that the biggest birthday wish she'd have is to be busted out of that darn orphanage (and that is certainly MY biggest birthday wish for her!). Isn't cool to think that YOUR loose change could help make that happen!!  To find out more about 'Loose Change for Lizzy'.  Click HERE and you'll go directly to a post dedicated just to change...
   As for the second fundraiser...you'll have to keep checking back.  That will be happening during 'birthday week'.  (TWO fundraisers for a TWO year old girl...perfect right!)
    

     

Loose Change for Lizzy

      For the month of October, we are holding...'Loose Change for Lizzy'.  I will be passing out cups... placing them at local business, sharing them with friends and family, putting one on my own desk... to gather 'loose change'. (you know, those extra coins from your pocket, the change from your drive through lunch at Chick-fil-a, the 'found' dollar at the bottom of the dryer).        
      I'm positive, if L could tell you herself, that the biggest birthday wish she'd have is to be busted out of that darn orphanage (and that is certainly MY biggest birthday wish for her!). Isn't cool to think that YOUR loose change could help make that happen!!  


      This are the cups that I'm sharing.  They are for 'kids on the go'.  I'd say that is a pretty good description of the Little Bear. 
 On the go, from an orphanage...On the go, home...
Plus they are orange and can so easily be transformed into pumpkins for the perfectly pumpkiny month of October!
 If you would like me to send you a cup, please give me your address and it will be at your door in no time.  Or if you already have a container to use and would simply like the picture to add to your collection device, I can email that instantaneously!  (Isn't technology wonderful!)   
I am also sharing a little 'blurb' to go with cups being left in businesses and for people who really wonder 'What IS this all about?'.  If you would like me to include a sheet of these 'blurbs' to share as well, please let me know.  I can add a sheet when sending your cup or in an email.  You can feel free to copy and spread around as wanted.

The pages look similar to this...
...but are adjusted slightly to explain the 'Loose Change for Lizzy' fundraiser 
and come 4 to a page!

You can fill up your cups for the ENTIRE month and at the end of October, we'll gather them all up (and the change inside), add it all together and share the total that will to go towards busting L out of that orphanage and giving her the chance to enjoy the rest of her birthdays at home with her family!



Down Syndrome Awareness Month


   Okay, this will be the first of (hopefully) many posts this month to share uplifting stories and information to raise awareness for individuals with Down Syndrome. 


    I saw this on Facebook this morning- 
"It's October 1st--the first day of Down Syndrome Awareness Month 2012. Time to reflect on a little history...check out this photo from 1984: President Reagan signs a resolution declaring October as "National Down Syndrome Month"!"

I think it's pretty fitting for the first Down Syndrome Awareness post on the 1st of October!  If you click the picture, it links to the National Down Syndrome Congress website.  The National Down Syndrome Congress is the country’s oldest national organization for people with Down syndrome, their families, and the professionals who work with them. They provide information, advocacy and support concerning all aspects of life for individuals with Down syndrome, and work to create a national climate in which ALL people will recognize and embrace the value and dignity of people with Down syndrome. 


I am also going to share a video that many of you have probably seen, but I think it's PERFECT for the 1st day of this special month!  Once my Little Bear is home safe in my arms, I can share more on how impactful this video was for me!  In this video, (which was posted on March 21 - World Down Syndrome Day) a little girl (Ace) talks about having a brother with Down Syndrome (Archie), who was adopted.  I can't watch it without crying.every.single.time!  (And I should drop a little plug for one Miss Danielle Rhymer as she is the one who shared this video when I saw it for the first time!  It goes to show, you never know who might be touched, in what sort of way, by the things that you chose to do or say!  Thank-you Danielle!) 

(If you scroll to the bottom of the page, you can pause the background soundtrack to better hear the video!)

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