Tonight's picture was taken in January of 2009 at Charlotte's birthday party. For my faithful readers, Charlotte is a very known and understood presence on Mattie's blog. Mattie met Charlotte in kindergarten and they became instant friends. Well that was until Mattie let me know one day in his dentist's office that the ring he got for a good cleaning was going to Charlotte. Not as a gift, but this was an engagement ring. I made a mental note of that, and figured that Mattie would forget and move on. However, one afternoon I was transporting Mattie and Charlotte together in my car to a birthday party. It was at that point Mattie popped out the ring and gave it to Charlotte and told her it was her engagement ring for when they get married. Mattie's feelings for Charlotte were real and he was very loyal to her and the beauty of it all was his feelings were reciprocated by Charlotte. Through Mattie's cancer battle, Charlotte was there. She visited in the hospital often and ALL the nurses, art therapists, and Linda knew exactly who Charlotte was and understood the importance of her in Mattie's life. There was just an aura around them. I have to imagine that there are certain children who were touched by Mattie's presence, a presence they will carry with them their entire life.
Quote of the day: A man's friendships are one of the best measures of his worth. ~ Charles Darwin
Today we learned our five percent earnings from the Whole Foods day on Wednesday was $6935. Before leaving the store on Wednesday night, I learned that the last non-profit who had a five percent day at Whole Foods in Alexandria earned around $6400. I told my mom about these numbers, and instantaneously in her head she calculated that we raised an additional $10,000 in sales for Whole Foods that day. The beauty of her mathematical mind! Some things are NOT genetic!!!!
Therefore our grand total we raised from the Whole Foods event is $8540. The Super Bowl raffle basket was a great idea and really brought several shoppers to our table and got them interacting with us. So from donations, selling 209 raffle tickets, and sales at Whole Foods, the day was a great success! The raffle basket was won by a man who we met toward the end of the evening. This fellow and I spoke for a while, and he actually got involved with helping adults with cancer, after cancer touched his friend's life. When I called this man to tell him he won the raffle item, he was stunned! He told me he never won anything and was very humbled by this.
Before heading to the mall today, I ran to the post office. We finally finished completing our Combined Federal Campaign (like United Way) application! This was no easy feat to do especially since it was our first time applying. Hopefully we should know if we qualify by the summer! For all our local federal government employee supporters, I will keep you posted!
I met my friend Heidi and her daughter's girl scout troop at the mall today. I was surrounded by 12 energetic and lively girls who were committed to assemble 100 teddy bears for sick children at Georgetown University Hospital. The girls are earning 50 service hours this year to qualify for a silver award from the Girl Scouts! Working with Mattie Miracle is part of these service hours. The girls raised $1000 by saving their babysitting money and from other part time opportunities to purchase the teddy bears. I had the opportunity to meet all 12 girls and their wonderful troop leaders. However, this is only part one of our interaction together. Next Friday, I am meeting the troop at Georgetown University Hospital. They will have lunch there and I will present to them information about Mattie and the Foundation. After the presentation, the girls will then go to each of the three pediatric units and the Lombardi Clinic to distribute teddy bears to sick children and their siblings.
For those of you who have never gone to a Build A Bear store, I assure you it is an experience. In the store is a stuffing machine. Each girl was given four or five bears today (the store premade 50 bears for us!). The bears come to them unstuffed. However, before they go to the machine which shoots fluffy stuffing into it, the girls pick a material made heart and rub it and give it wishes and then place it inside the bear. Almost in a way the bears are symbolically stuffed with HOPE and LOVE for its recipient. With the HOPE of feeling and getting better. I will share with you some of the pictures I took today for this special gathering.
The store leader had the girls do a bonding activity. The girls formed two circles. They then crossed arms and held hands. The goal was to unwind themselves without letting go of each others hands to form a circle in which they were holding hands normally by their sides.
I entitle this picture... Bear Happiness! As you can see Lexi loved the bears she made and Erin (on the floor on the right) also felt the same way!
Heidi's daughter Isabel was helping to organize the Teddy Bears as they were being made. As you can see the bears are adorable, and with their pretty bows, they will hopefully bring a smile to many children.
Ann and I represented Mattie Miracle today and Heidi took a picture of us with all the girls and their bears.
The store leader also took a picture of ALL of us, including the troop leaders. The adults in the upper left hand corner are: Ellen, Pam, and Trevor, and you can see Ann on the left hand side on the floor. On the right hand side on the floor is Heidi, and I am behind her.
I love Darwin's quote, because I do think friendships are a measure of one's worth. Based on how I have been feeling for the last couple of weeks and the intensity of this week, I was simply wiped out by noon. I had lunch with Ann and Alison today. I actually sat down while they purchased lunch for me because standing on a line was more than I could handle. I did not have to say that, they just understood that. As my faithful readers know, Ann and Alison were instrumental to Team Mattie, and these women saw me at my worst moments. However physically I am not at my finest hours and between how I am feeling and the emotional component of the week, I am on overload. Alison shared with me some feelings about Mattie and his connection with her son (who was in his kindergarten class) at lunch that were very touching and will remain with me always. I do have a mind like a steel trap. I remember what people say and especially how they make me feel.