Tuesday, December 28, 2010

102 and Counting

Though we've all finished our miles and fundraising efforts for Road Warriors 2010, I wanted to share a story that fits the passion we all had for "Finding The Road Ahead".

Today I had the privilege of attending the funeral of a woman, my husband's Auntie Alice, who lived to be 102 years old. She grew up the child of Italian immigrants, one of 13 children, working on a flower farm in Pacifica, living in a one room house, and after she got married, walking across the street every day to her church to meet with God for a while and go back home. Her sister told us that the last day she saw Alice...about a month before she died...she didn't recognize her sisters, but she had a smile on her face. A few weeks later, she went to sleep and never woke up again. Her only daughter Barbara, gave the eulogy today. At the end of telling her Mom's story, she simply ended with this, "Alice doesn't live her anymore. She lives with God now."

It was a very moving day for me. My parents and Dave's parents are gone. Some sad stories there. My father disowned me. He never wanted to know God or accept His love. In the end, he didn't want me either. That broke me. It wasn't like he wasn't offered the truth. He just didn't want anything to do with God's life or love. 

In the end, the only story of a life worth telling-- it seems to me--is that a person got to know God,  loved what God did for them, and then passed it on, not because it was a duty but because it was impossible to contain, because the love God put into a life just got so big, it spilled out onto everyone around. If that isn't our life's story, I have to wonder, what IS our purpose?

I hope that just like Alice, someone's last memories of me will be this: that just before I died, I had a smile on my face...that I wasn't afraid to die because I knew I wasn't dying at all...I was just taking a long awaited run to God's house.

Welcome home Auntie Alice.
That's Auntie Alice on the right at 100 yrs old and her sister Florine, now 91

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Truffles to Remember Christmas Campaign Sends Total to $9400

Merry Christmas from our home to yours! To celebrate the season, we just hosted our last event to help us reach our goal of raising $10,000... "Truffles to Remember". We set up shop outside of Studio 7 Art Gallery in Pleasanton, gave away our home made truffles and accepted donations for the Freedom Alliance Scholarship Fund. The scholarship fund is a beautiful way to tell the sons and daughters of fallen heroes that we will not forget the sacrifices their parents made.

Two Great Things Happened Today
First...It didn't rain! 
And on Saturday December 18th at the corners of Main and Angela Streets near the Farmers' Market, our big hearted Americans stopped to find out what was going on and donated another $85.00 which brings our donation total up to $9400 to honor America's military heroes! 

I'm SO grateful and SO pumped for our Christmas Miracle. 
All week the weather report threatened to drown out our event. But we asked the heavenly rain maker to help us out and the rain held off! Woohoo!

We made up little boxes of truffles that looked like special gifts and that is exactly how they were scooped up..as surprises for 92 year old grandmas and birthday presents for special friends. It was just a whole heck of alot of fun today.

If you have a couple minutes, here is a Freedom Alliance video that shows just exactly why and how our donations and efforts are worth every second of our time:

And if you would like to donate to Freedom Alliance, click here.

And thanks again to everyone...you gave from the heart of Christmas today.

Joyful all creation rise
Join the triumph of the skies
With angelic host proclaim
Christ is born in Bethlehem

Friday, December 10, 2010

SOLD! Racy Red LeMond Has A New Owner!

The beautiful red Lemond Road Bike I was always so proud to ride now has a new home and owner! We are so grateful to Ian and Alicia Connelly for donating the $600.00 asking price to Freedom Alliance...this money is precious as it will be used to honor the memory of our fallen soldiers by sending their sons and daughters to college.

Thanks to Alicia and Ian!
 Our total for money raised through Road Warriors 2010 now stands at $9275!

What a fantastic and meaningful Christmas present for Alicia,
for Road Warriors 2010 and for Freedom Alliance.

What a perfect time to say...
"God Bless Us Everyone!"

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Au Revoir Racey Red LeMond Road Bike!

My Racey Red LeMond Zurich Road Bike

I did most of my Road Warrior miles on my Santa Cruz MTB, not the Greg LeMond road bike pictured here because I never felt quite stable on it and now I know why...it's too big for me! Should fit a person 3 inches taller than me so I put it on Craig's List yesterday. Besides....I have a new ride! Dave bought me a VERY HOT Trek Madone 6.5. Still getting used to the speed of this thing..scary going down hill so fast when you're so short!

Anyway, 3 inquiries so far. Sale of this beauty will be our final donation for Freedom Alliance Scholarship Fund.

Only asking $600.00 for a gorgeous Christmas present for some lucky new owner who will also be honoring a veteran killed in action by helping send his/her son or daughter to college with a Freedom  Alliance Scholarship. Yes!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Gotta Love My Katella High School Classmates

I loved high school...well most of it...but always my high school friends. They stuck by me even when I couldn't hold onto my regular baton, my fire baton or my swords during our KHS Spring Talent Show...I can't imagine how frightening the results of my sweaty fingers must have been for the people in the front row bleachers. They were watching a slicing, dicing and burning act. Of course I cried all night after my disastrous drop-itis showing, but my friends never teased or made fun of my folly. In my sophomore year, I advanced from baton twirler-dropper to assistant drill team leader. I remember "yelling' at the tall girls (I'm very short) in the back row who couldn't seem to meet my standard of marching with a 90 degree angle to their long legs (mine are short). They didn't hold it against me.
ok, ok, that's me on the left with my fellow KHS cheerleaders
Marsha Capen is third from right...she is our latest  big donor!

Some 41 years later, I find myself SO proud and grateful for my high school friends because they sponsored me so generously to support Wounded Warrior Project and Freedom Alliance.  Even though money was tight, my high school buddy Phil Bement pledged $100.00 right off the bat. One of those tall drill team members, long time friend Susie (Martin) Jaqua and her husband Jim chimed in with another $100.00. My cheerleading buddy Marsha Capen (and fellow RD) just sent us $100 wonderful dollars yesterday. And Bob Sherwin, our 30 point a game basketball guard and West Point graduate honored us with $500.00 donation thanks to a matching contribution from his employer Zenger Folkman...bringing us up to $8600! Mike Vanderwalker, who hosts our KHS reunion website, was gracious enough to let us announce Road Warriors 2010 on the website all summer and has offered to post any future fundraising announcements as we move forward.

High school is a bitter sweet time peppered with giggles, tears, unfettered joys and overt rejection for most of us. I've got some of those memories. But I also have a great sense of pride in the kids I giggled and cried with all those years ago. Can't thank you enough for picking up the gauntlet and making a stand for our nation's greatest citizens.

41 years later, KHS class of '69: tall Susie, me, Ginny, Sandy and Susie

BTW...since we're talking education, Road Warriors 2010 is still accepting donations for Freedom Alliance Scholarship Fund which honors servicemen who have been killed or permanently disabled in ANY American conflict by providing their children with college scholarships--for any type of college and for up to 4 years of college. If you would like to make a donation to the scholarship fund for Christmas, click on the link www.FreedomAlliance.org.