Saturday, December 29, 2012

Season 6 Over

Holiday number 6 is over.  The trees are torn down and put away.  It seems like I used the avoidance tactic for the most part this year.  I could not bring myself to take the tree to the cemetery, so Marc and the girls did it.  I held off a good two weeks after the girls started asking before I put the trees up.  The shopping and wrapping were done just days before Christmas.  But Santa still remembered to leave stuffed animals under the Abby Tree.

So now it's on to New Year's and I am super excited that one of our friends from our CMH support group will be riding on this year's Donate Life America float in honor and memory of her daughter.  I asked her to find Abby's flower that we have placed on the float and be the one to put it in its place for us.    


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Donor Mother
Age 45 ~ Independence, MO
Business Owner and Executive Director,
Blair's Foster Socks Foundation
Sponsored by Cytonet
in partnership with Midwest Transplant Network

Michele Shanahan DeMoss knew her daughter Blair didn't have a problem with teddy bears. Blair's problem was babies' cold, bare feet. Each time a foster child came into her family's care, Blair asked, "Why do they always have stuffed animals, but no one can find them socks?" Determined to fix the problem, 11-year-old Blair envisioned Foster Socks, a program to provide socks to foster and homeless children. Blair's dream was dashed when she was fatally shot by a nearby Fourth of July reveler, but Foster Socks did not die with Blair, who gave new life to at least six people as a donor. "She would have gotten this done, "said Michele. "Now it's up to us."

Michele's Story
Michele Shanahan DeMoss knew her daughter Blair Michaela Shanahan Lane didn't have a problem with teddy bears. Blair's problem was babies with cold, bare feet. Each time a new foster child was given to her family's care, Blair asked the same question: "Why do foster kids always show up with stuffed animals, but no one can find them socks?"
That was Blair: pragmatic, compassionate, and determined to fix the problem. Her solution was Foster Socks, a program dedicated to providing socks to foster and homeless children that she hoped to launch as part of her Girl Scout Gold Award project.
While most girls complete their Gold Award projects as juniors or seniors in high school, Blair had a different sense of urgency. Though not yet a sixth grader, she was already filling journals with ideas and project plans for Foster Socks. She couldn't get warm socks to foster and homeless kids soon enough. Sadly, her dream was dashed before it got started.
Celebrating the Fourth of July, 2011, 11-year-old Blair was enjoying the traditional back yard holiday festivities she had since she was two years old at a family home in Kansas City, Mo. Suddenly, Blair collapsed; she had been shot by a holiday reveler firing a gun from nearby.
Hundreds of people visited Blair in the hospital, friends, family, civic leaders, pastors. Michele was stunned at how many people her daughter had touched, and she was touched by their words. "Her friends' parents told me their kids wanted to be like her. And so many people mentioned that Blair knew how to live as a good Christian," said Michele. "Her understanding and devotion to that was not about religion. She went to the church nearly every week, but it was never about the building."
Blair died the next day, July fifth. She never gave socks to homeless children, but as an organ donor, she may have given new life to at least six people between the ages of six and 60. And, if Michele has anything to do with it, Foster Socks will not die with Blair. "Blair radiated the love and presence of God. She would have gotten this done, "said Michele. "Now it's up to us."

Please take the time to read the rest of the float riders' stories and the floragraph stories.  Each one is an amazing gift that changed another life.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Holiday Ramblings

Christmas is all but here and it has been a struggle like usual for me. 

It started the day before Thanksgiving for me as I ran to Walmart to grab a birthday gift.  I was standing in the toy aisle, looking at all the boy toys when I began to notice the holiday songs and the Christmas decor.  My chest started to tighten and the anxiety started to flow.  I made up my mind rather quickly about what I would be purchasing and made my exit. 

The next evening after our family dinner, our evening plans were made.  It was decided my sisters were taking the kids to see two different movies and my Mom and I would try to make a couple of purchases during the sales.  I knew from the day before that I might not be able to handle the store, but we would give it a try.  Unfortunately my prediction was correct and I only lasted about 10 minutes in the store before I was calling my Mom to tell her it was just too much.  I could feel the panic attack starting and knew I had to leave before it progressed any further.

Instead I have been online shopping more this year and it has really helping me in dealing with the holidays by avoiding the stores as much as I can. 

We also finally gave in and put the trees all up in one day last weekend so it was all over at once. 

Pictures are done and we had family ones done too this year. 

We used Abby's little red leather purse she had gotten for Christmas her last year with us to the pictures this year. 

Here is a glimpse at how our Christmas cards are this year. (Hopefully I get them mailed.)
Wishing you ~


& Joy
And the good thing is there is just a week left and I can be done for another year. 

(And yes, I am doing my best to avoid the recent tragedy in the news because it just brings too many emotions back up for me.)