Tuesday, March 27, 2012

An Exhausting Success

Hard work is...well...hard, but it generally pays off in the end!

I am happy to report that the Whole Hearts Foundation fundraiser event in Dallas, this past Sunday, was a great success!


After months of planning, meeting, recruiting helpers, inviting guests, and changing plans, the event went off without a hitch. 

We arrived at Medical City Children's Hospital at 10am on Sunday morning to set up and get everything ready for the guests. By 11:30, most of the stuff was ready to go, Dena just needed to put the finishing touches on everything, as she is so good at doing! Matt and his manger, Jenn, and two band mates, Chris and Mark, arrived to tour the hospital and Congenital Heart Surgery Unit. The tour was  very good and I was excited to get to hear and see a few things that I didn't know about at the hospital.

At 12:30, the tour was over and it was time for Matt to do a sound check for his acoustic performance. I knew that people would be there for the event because we had about 125 RSVP's, but the few minutes before it was supposed to start were still tense due to doubt. By 1:15pm we probably had over 100 people there to support us. At 1:30 I had to work up the nerve to step up to the mic and welcome everyone. It is so weird that I don't have a problem standing in front of a class of kids, but if you ask me to speak to a room full of adults, I get so nervous! 

Me giving my welcome
After I welcomed everyone, Devin Bruton, who is a hospital administrator, spoke a little about Medical City and then introduced Dr. Mendeloff (Tucker's surgeon). Dr. Mendeloff spoke for about 10 minutes and it was great. He shared about the past and future of treating CHDs and about the hospital's program. Finally, the moment that most were waiting for, Matt performed a few songs, including "All of Me".

Dr. Mendeloff speaking
Matt singing "All of Me"

Matt & Chris performing "The Redeemer"
It was so awesome to see everyone's reaction to the Whole Hearts mission and our plans. The support of the families and people there was surprising, to say the least. We were honored that Matt's band mates and manager took their time to join us. I was blessed to have some family and old friends who came to support us. Also, we had a few businesses that I had invited who came. 

The great crowd!

So proud of the group!
Honestly, it was probably one of the most involved, pressure-laden project that I have ever undertaken. However, it was totally worth all of the time and energy that was spent on planning, setting up, and putting it on.

I had a tremendous amount of help and support along the way. The event absolutely wouldn't have happened without my friends and "teammates" from Whole Hearts: Andrea, Matt, Brett, & Julie! Also, I had a ton of help from the people at Medical City Children's Hospital, particularly Devin Bruton, Amy Carlisle, and Jennifer Abrams. My brother, Greg, and his DJ partner, Dan, donated their services for the cause too, and that was a great help! Most importantly, Dena put up with all of the time that I spent planning and working on stuff. She also helped me make decorations, set up, and tear down. And the biggest job of all was single-handedly wrangling Tucker while I was busy at the event.

Greg & Dan with Matt
We ended the day by going to the Winter Jam concert at the American Airlines Center, where Matt's band, Sanctus Real, was performing with other groups. We had great seats and got to hear some wonderful Christian music. Tucker had a blast! By the time we made it home we were all exhausted. Tucker actually gave a little scare on the way home by having some sort of panic-attack or bad nightmare. Luckily, he seemed to be fine the next day. We aren't really sure what happened, but he hasn't had any more of those, so I guess he is alright.

I hope that you might consider making a donation to Whole Hearts to help us support families dealing with CHD. It is really simple to donate, just click this link: Whole Hearts Donation. The link is totally secure and 100% of the money will go to help families.

Thanks for listening and please share our blog is possible!


Monday, March 19, 2012

Spring Break

We had a great Spring Break!

YOU are invited!
Before I get into all of our family stuff, I want to share an opportunity that is coming up. I have been planning the first Whole Hearts Foundation event for Dallas for months. The time has finally arrived to put all of that planning into action. Our Whole Hearts "social" and fundraiser is this coming Sunday at 1pm at Medical City Children's Hospital. It will be a reception in the atrium of the hospital and it will feature an acoustic performance by Matt Hammitt (Bowen's dad). He and his wife, Sarah, founded Whole Hearts and they will be sharing their vision for the foundation. All money raised at the event will go to support a special project at Medical City and heart families in Dallas. You all are invited to join us at the event, just RSVP to to let us know you are coming. I have attached a copy of the invitation so you can see it. 

Tucker knows his ABC's

So, for Spring Break we took a short trip to Oklahoma City. We took Tucker to the zoo, which he loved, we went to Bricktown, and we visited the Oklahoma City bombing memorial and museum. It was a great little trip and we had a lot of fun and made some memories. You can read a little more about it on Tucker's caringbridge site here:
Mommy, Tucker, and Daddy at "Pops" on Route 66
Can you tell he is ready to go to the zoo???
Tucker and his "pride"!
Tucker & Mommy having lunch at Leo's BBQ in OKC
The other big event for Spring Break was to get Finn's nursery ready. If you didn't know, the nursery was our guest room. It was painted the color of a Tiffany jewelry box and VERY feminine. This would not do for our new little man. We picked out some crib bedding after we found out it was a boy and it is red, white, and blue. The idea was to save the red and white stripes that were in the middle of the room and paint the Tiffany's blue to match the bedding.

I started priming the walls on Wednesday night and then moved on to the paint on Thursday. The top half of the room is light blue, almost like denim, and the bottom half is navy blue. I finished up on Friday afternoon, with some help from my mom and dad. There was only one mishap, a puddle of spilled navy blue paint in the middle of the beige, carpeted floor. After trying numerous things to clean the stain, I gave up and decided to up the stain with beige paint. It doesn't look great, but I think it will be okay until I can find someone who can patch the piece of carpet. See the before and after pictures below.
Before - "Tiffany's" room            After - Finn's room
It was a great Spring Break, not too busy, but not boring. Now comes the countdown to the end of school and the arrival of Finn. We are ready for the new little guy to get here and join our family.

Thanks, as always, for visiting and sharing our family journey with us.

God Bless,