Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Friday, February 19, 2010

Update: Efforts for Haiti.

Again, thank you all so very much for your help with our fundraising efforts for Haiti. The generosity I have found among you all is nothing short of amazing. xo

We are still in "collection" mode ... collecting proceeds of the Studio 36 Silent Auction, our on-line auctions, and Isaac's coin drive. Therefore, we don't have any "final" numbers yet ... but we have been able to send out a check to each of the organizations that we are collecting for. Here are some current numbers to celebrate:

Haitian Roots: $359.47
Hearts With Haiti: $359.47
Yele: $100.00

These aren't "telethon" numbers - but any amount is most helpful and needed - so we are pleased. And there is more money coming in nearly every day!

We also received much press for our efforts ... and that is always good. Keeping the plight of Haiti in the hearts and minds of the masses is going to be difficult. But if we - who love Haiti dearly - can find unique ways to keep media attention on the restoration efforts in Haiti - then we are doing something powerful indeed.

Our story was picked up (and made front page news) in The Bangor Daily and The Weekly. I was also interviewed for a piece on Examiner.com (here) and had another interview for a local college paper. Some friends have told me that they have found pieces of our story by accident in various other places, but I have yet to discover them. The point is ... one small family in Bangor, Maine can raise awareness and make a change. We ALL can. And not just for Haiti --- but for whatever we believe in. Remember that!

"Never underestimate the power of a small group of committed people to change the world. In fact, it is the only thing that ever has." (Margaret Mead)

My friend Shannon, from Haitian Roots, tells me that Isson (a fellow Board member of Haitian Roots) is on his way into Haiti today in order to locate and provide assistance to as many children in the Haitian Roots program as possible. This is good news, but it is also a bit frightening. Of the 200+ children in the program, only 34 children have been accounted for at this point. Please pray that good news is heard regarding the rest of the children ... including the sweet little girl, Ashly Dort, who many of you helped to sponsor via this blog. I will certainly update you all as I hear anything.

Also - I will continue to hold some fundraising auctions here on this blog - hopefully as early as tomorrow. Thank you all for your prayers, generosity, love and light.


Monday, February 15, 2010

Cloud 9.

I am on Cloud 9. Seriously. Whatever "bliss" is ... I am in it. I am giddy all over my body to the point where I am shaking as I type this ... and I just finished crying tears of joy. Now, once you hear what has caused me such elation ... please don't think me gluttonous or absurd. I am still very well aware of the pains that Haiti is enduring ... and will continue to do all I can for the people I love in Haiti, as well as all the Haitian people. But, I cannot help but to be so excited at the possibility of a certain something that I just discovered ... a treat that I am definitely going to allow myself ... and my family.

Ok --- I just discovered that the world of Harry Potter has now been "brought to life" by the genius of Universal Studios in Orlando. Hogwarts is no longer an imaginary castle ... it is now as real as it will ever be. And when I saw the videos about it ... I shook with joy. My greatest fantasy has been brought to life! (Okay, I have a few other fantasies, some of which include Orlando Bloom in his pirate attire --- but that is not going to happen --- except when Halis does a little "role-playing' for me). But this fantasy is now a reality and I am blown away! I am a faithful Harry Potter fan to the maximum ... and am one of those people who has uttered the words ... "Oh, how I wish Hogwarts was a real place that I could visit." From my lips to God's ears :)

So, you have GOT TO see this place. Go to the site, watch the videos, the interviews about the park with the characters of the movies, etc. Even a non-Harry Potter fan will have to be amazed at the work that has gone into this. AMAZING!!!


So, I am going to save my pennies ... get busy with some portrait gigs, craft away for my Etsy store, etc ... all to help me get to my personal "Cloud 9" ... and when I get there, I will be so excited to do the following:

1. Find & purchase the perfect wand for me at Ollivander's.

2. Enjoy some Butterbear at Hogmeads with the family.

3. Seek the perfect joke gift at Zonko's Joke Shop.

4. Visit Hagrid's Hut to take a ride on his Hippogriff.

5. Try on some school uniforms at Dervish and Bangles.

6. Check out some Death Eater masks and other "confiscated goods" at Filch's Emporium.

7. Get my fix of Chocolate Frogs at HoneyDukes.

8. Send some Owl Posts from the authentic Owl Post Office --- to some very lucky friends!

9. Stroll the halls of Hogwarts! (Where I may pass out from the excitement of it all).

10. And MAYBE take a dragon ride on the "Dueling Dragons".

Seriously guys ... I cannot even begin to explain to you how excited I am at the possibility of doing all these things ... while walking through the streets of this amazing replica of Harry Potter's world. Me ... and every adolescent (and adult trying to relive their adolescence) in the World!

Ok --- so, there it is. I am a total dork. But a youthful ... easily excitable ... fun-loving dork. And frankly, my son thinks he has the coolest Mom in the world because of it. Hopefully, sometime this fall, we will afford to make my fantasy come true ... that I shall purchase my very own wand at Ollivander's before heading into Hogwarts for some *magic*. Until then, we will be working on our British accents, sewing up some required Hogwarts uniforms, and practising some of our spells ... all to create the most authentic Harry Potter experience possible. I think I shall go as Molly Weasley, Isaac as Harry (or Dobby the House Elf), Halis as Snape (my fave character).

Wow - this is SO WAY BEYOND Awesome.

Any other 30-somethings out there who are on Cloud 9 over a Harry Potter theme park???



Thursday, February 11, 2010

Online Benefit Auction for Haiti: Item #2.

ATTENTION: This auction has now closed ... as I was given a bid to close it early that I could not refuse :) Not only will it be going to an AWESOME woman ... but the buyer made a significant donation to the cause. I hope you all understand. THANK YOU!!!

This is not just a necklace ... it is art. And I am privileged to know the amazing man who creates these works. Jason Brown, and his lovely wife Donna are both proud Native people who maintain many of the traditions of their tribe ... including creating various forms of art that have been a part of their cultural heritage for centuries.

Their website is full of their gorgeous works ... but you will not find another piece like this one! This necklace was created just for our Haitian fundraising efforts. Jason tells me that pieces like this usually gross over $200 in area museum stores and specialty shops. And I can SO see why. It is made with sterling silver, Tennessee River shell and turquoise.

This piece is absolutely stunning. And it can be yours!

If you are interested in placing a bid on it, please do so via the comment section of this blog post. Bidding will end on Monday, February 15th at midnight ET ... and I think I shall start the bidding :)

Thank you Jason & Donna for such a generous donation to this cause!



P.S. Kelly O. place the winning bid on Item #2. Thank you Kelly. I will be in touch to get this to you right away.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A Hand for Haiti : Recipe Book.

Reprinted from Raising Itty Bitty Bookworms ...

Since the earthquake in Haiti, Lauren at Celiac Teen has been working hard to gather recipes from contributing food bloggers all over the world in an effort to help. She has diligently put these recipes together in an e-book, available for purchase on her blog. All donations received for the e-book will be sent to the Canadian Red Cross (Lauren is Canadian) for purposes of helping victims of the Haiti earthquake. The e-book has many wonderful recipes, and many of them are gluten-free or easily gluten-free adaptable. Read more about how to obtain this e-book and contribute here.

What an amazing teen! Please support her in her efforts!

(Thank you Tara - for letting me know about this).


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Online Benefit Auction for Haiti: Item #1.

These pillows are absolutely gorgeous in person. They are made from the artwork of local photographers ... quilted and sewn by local volunteers ... and sold in area stores to benefit "at-risk" youth in Southern Maine. The woman in charge of this program gave me some pillows to sell for the benefit of Haiti. She is a generous soul to be sure.

This pillow is 14" square, has a bottom zipper for taking pillow form out, is sewn with high quality materials, and is washable.

The picture featured on this pillow is of a tree in winter ... full of birds. So lovely.

So - start the bidding!

Please leave a comment (on the blog - not facebook please) with your bid and your contact info. Please note that shipping will cost an additional $5. Bidding will be closed at midnight (ET) on Thurs, Feb 11th. All proceeds will benefit Haitian Roots.com.

Thank you!


Monday, February 8, 2010

Auction Results.

(Isaac's now-famous "froggie bank" & part of his coin drive for Haiti)

Again ... and again ... and again ... a HEARTFELT THANKS to all who supported Studio 36's Silent Auction Benefit for Haiti. Thank you for the donations, the well-wishes, the bids, the coin collections, the publicity, the prayers ... for everything. You all are amazing and I am so thankful for each and every one of you. xo

The benefit was successful in oh-so-many ways. Many folks brought their coins in to support Isaac's coin drive. Generous bids were made. Local artists gained some publicity for their work. Many of us shared stories of our connections to Haiti. Others asked questions about adoption. Lovely connections were made. And money was raised! It was all good. It was all love and light.

So, here are the numbers thus far:


Total winning bids: $1044.00
Total collected thus far: $764.00
Total to be collected: $278.00
Total expenses for the event: $280.96


Total collected thus far: $362.00



I am pleased with the results and hope you all are too. As soon as all monies are collected, we will dole out checks to the organizations that we were collecting for ... and Isaac will make his final decisions on where his coin collection monies will go. I will be sure to post the results here.

Also ... PLEASE NOTE: A few wonderful items did not receive their minimum bid amounts at the auction, and we have decided to sell some of them here on our blog ... in hopes of reaching a wider audience. We are hoping to post one item a day. Please stay tuned as there are some amazing pieces for sale and all sales will continue to benefit Haiti.

Again, thank you all.


Friday, February 5, 2010

Simply Amazing: Some Goodies Donated to Tomorrow's Benefit Auction.

I am in awe. And here is why ...

As you can see, there is something for everybody at the Studio 36 Silent Auction to Benefit Haiti ... and some absolutely breath-taking art. I am in such awe of the generosity of my friends, colleagues and neighbors. Several times tonight, while putting everything together for the big sale, I felt tears come to my eyes as I thought of the capacity we all have to love one another ... and how we humans always manage to come together to assist one another in our greatest hours of need. Haiti is in GREAT need right now ... and there is certainly no shortage of loving hearts and able hands to assist in all ways possible.

An enormous thanks to all of you. Every one of you has helped this effort in some way ... by telling your friends, donating an item, gathering coins for Isaac's fundraiser, sending prayers and positive thoughts, etc.

Tomorrow (or today, as this is being typed at 3am) is going to be great! I have faith that lots of money and goodwill is going to be generated for the people in Haiti ... and especially for the organizations that we love and trust to do amazing work within Haiti. I look forward to telling you all how successful this fundraiser has been --- and to seeing so many of you tomorrow.