Saturday, August 6, 2011

Just Serve...It Feels Good!

This past week has been amazing! Some of you know that I've been involved with a service project called "Just Serve", a feel good reality t.v. show geared around volunteering. Two other volunteers and I went into the week not knowing what to expect. Over the course of the week, we worked with veterans to support soldiers currently deployed in Afghanistan and Iraq. (Believe me, we were all relieved we didn't have to attempt a training course or  jump out of an airplane. Although, that would have made for some pretty good t.v. I am no G.I. Jane!)  We sent care packages to 23 soldiers with the help of three veterans. They let us know what items meant the most to them while they were deployed. It wasn't surprising to hear that ANYTHING from home was appreciated. And all three said it was like Christmas every time they would receive something. I was paired with a retired Marine who served in Vietnam.  I was struck by his strong emotions he carried over 40 years later. He spoke of the friends he lost and the sadness he felt by the lack of support when he got home.

We wrote letters to the soldiers letting them know that they were thought of and appreciated. That we were praying for them. To come home safe. All of the veterans had talked about how important letters were while they were deployed. Even though I had never met any of these soldiers that I wrote to, I felt like I owed them so much for their sacrifice. We even baked some homemade cookies for them. (A few may have been burnt! BUT it's the thought that counts!) I feel so thankful for everything I have. It was a truly humbling experience.

Not to mention the crew and other volunteers were amazing! We all had so much fun laughing and serving together. We also realized that it doesn't take a HUGE project to make a REAL difference in someone else's life. If you want to get involved go to It doesn't take much to make a difference!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Protect Your Man Parts

Kids are tough! Especially 4 year old boys. Not only does he have the Spartan helmet, cape AND sword...he's right within striking distance of my ankles. After the first jab to my thumb, he says..."ok, you can have the shield." I think I'm safe. BUT before I even have the shield in my hands....WHACK...he strikes my shins...really hard. No. It was not a real sword but I swear to you that 4 year old boy is HERCULES. Seriously. Ouch. Then he says, "Alright. I'll get you a weapon." I'm thinking this is going to be a fair fight now. Wrong. I was so wrong. He comes out of his bedroom and gives me...dun duh da dun...a lincoln building log. I can't make this stuff up. So picture this pint sized warrior with a sword and helmet. Then picture me with a dinky little shield AND lincoln log scrunched up to the 2 foot size of the shield...I did not win.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011


I'm really excited to be working on a service project this week called "JUST SERVE". It's an inspirational reality t.v. show based on people helping people. Part of our mission for today was to help a family who's father and husband is deployed in Iraq. We were helping pack their entire house so that she wouldn't have to do it all alone. It was incredible to see all of these veterans coming together to help someone in need! We even got to meet the father over skype in the afternoon. The mother has two small kids, so in addition to packing, a lot of my time was keeping the kids occupied and out of the way. (SO much fun!) Because the experience is being filmed we were all wired for sound to capture as much conversation as possible. As I was holding the little girl, she pulled my shirt down and yelled...BOOBIES! I guess service means different things for everyone and I'm just glad I could contribute! 
Really, it was an honor to help a family who has given so much for this country. For you. For me. We often think of the service men and women abroad and the sacrifices they make to keep us safe, but forget about the families right here at home and the sacrifices they make. Can you imagine spending 18 months away from your spouse, trying to raise two kids and keeping your house together? Not once did I hear that mom complain. Makes me appreciate all that I have even more. Just...thank you. I'm looking forward to the rest of the week and the exciting opportunities that lie ahead!