Happy New Year to everyone!! 2013 will no doubt be full of wonderful things as well as hard things, as that is the way of life. We are looking forward with great anticipation for the things God has in store for us to grow us and mature us and to make Himself known through each of us individually and as a family. It will definitely not be a boring year!
With a new year comes a bit of a new endeavor. I am always very nervous about starting something new, and I tend to jump in with both feet sometimes without always doing all my homework. But I think this is something that will totally be in God's hands and if He wants us to be successful, then it will take off. "What is it?" you ask. Well, as many of you who have come to my blog know, I have a few passions and talents in the creative and food areas. I want to use those things to be a blessing to others. As some of you may know as well, we just had a very unexpected diagnosis in our youngest son this November, when John was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Although the brain tumor was mostly removed and the pathology came back benign, we will be going through some form of treatment to eradicate the part of the tumor that is left.
As a result of meeting with our oncology and radiology doctors, we have crossed paths and become more aware of the issue of children's cancer and pediatric cancer treatments. It is a very heart breaking thing to see so many children, most of whom are very young, having to go through such illnesses, and the effects of the treatments used to try to cure them are so hard on their little bodies. We as a family would like to do something to help them and future children who may be diagnosed with brain and other cancers. That is why as of January 2013 we are going to try to raise funds to go towards finding out a way to treat childhood cancers with better and less harsh treatments and to find a cure for these conditions. Funding for most research in this area does not come from government grants, but is mostly funded privately.
How are we going to raise funds? What is our goal for this year?
1. I will be selling handmade cards and gift packaging in my etsy.com store. Most of the net profits of those cards and items will go towards our goal.
2. I am also a consultant for two direct sales companies, and I will be donating all my profits from the sale of these items to this cause. The first company is Jordan Essentials which is an all natural skin care company that sells body care, hair care, mineral make up and face care products. I love love love all their products. I highly recommend their basic body care set for everyone, especially during the cold winter months when our skin is so dry. It would make a great Valentine's gift, Mother's Day gift, wedding or baby shower gift.
The second company is Dove Chocolate Discoveries, which is a high end exclusive line of ready to eat chocolates, chocolate based beverage mixes, chocolate baking mixes, chocolate flavored savory rubs and sauces, and baking/candy making chocolate. I am very much a chocolate lover, and I love their products. We have some fabulous items that would be perfect for Valentine's Day.
3. Our goal for this year is modest in amount, but will require us to work hard to make the cards and items needed to meet that goal. Our goal is to donate at least $400 to the Children's Hospital of Alabama oncology department. All the money will go into cancer research.
It may seem like a very small goal, but it will take selling at least 200 single cards to reach that amount. As a busy homeschool mom and homemaker, that will not be an easy thing to accomplish. My oldest son is very artistic and has said that he will help me make cards if I cut out materials. I am trying to get my children involved so that they have something big to work towards and will learn how to work towards a goal, pray about it, and see God provide. I am also trying to teach them how to give and help others, to work for something bigger than their wants.
My youngest son loves to help me in the kitchen and manage things, so I will be getting his help in some endeavors that may show up in the store in the near future along the lines of baking mixes.
My husband is an IT guy so I hope that he can help me post items and run the techie side of this, but mostly he will help keep me grounded, cheer us on and pray with us for God to provide for us to give towards this cause.
I am starting out small. Right now I need to get things up in my etsy.com store to sell. Be looking for that in the next week or so. I will be mainly focusing on birthday cards, Valentine's/Love/Anniversary, friendship/encouragement, thank you, get well/feel better cards, and things like that. I want to make cards to encourage my boys to be the young men God wants them to be and work hard at what He is calling them to do right now, so you will see cards like that too.
I hope and pray that you will join me in this endeavor. Check out my stores, they are all linked above if you click on the names. Check into them monthly and see what new things we have up and the specials that are going on. I hope that you will take the time in 2013 to send a card to a friend or loved one to say that you are thinking of them and wishing them well. I can't tell you how excited most people get when they see a non-junk mail or bill envelope in their mailbox. It is a treat that is so rare and we have lost the art of doing. Make someone's day and give a gift of your time and attention. Life is so short and we are never guaranteed a tomorrow. Make sure you are spending your time building the relationships that will last and have eternal impact.