How to Help Oklahoma Recover

My friend, the Do-Gooder Mama has created an amazing list of ways to help those affected by the tornadoes in Oklahoma. Please read, please donate where your heart leads you. If you want to donate to a faith-based organization, she has listed the Salvation Army. I want to list one more: World Vision. Their corporate headquarters are local to Federal Way, WA (my neighbor really) and do great work domestically and abroad.  Check them out too. Hugs and love to all affected. Praying for you and donating for you!

The Do-Gooder Mama

I am watching CNN and in shock at the devastation that Mother Nature inflicted on Oklahoma.  As a mother, my heart aches for the children who lost their lives at their school today and for their families who have to move forward and pick up the pieces of their lives.  So many lives, young and old, lost.  So many homes destroyed.  So much still unknown about the extent of the damage.  As an American, I know it is my responsibility to take care of my fellow citizens in their time of need.  Do you feel the same?  Here are some ways that you can help:

1.  Support the American Red Cross

  • Text REDCROSS to 90999  to donate $10 to Disaster Relief efforts
  • Donate Online
  • Donate by phone – 1-800-RED-CROSS
  • Donate blood

2.  Support the Salvation Army – mobilizing mobile kitchens to feed 2500

  • Text STORM to 80888 to donate $10…

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NW Family Expo

ImageOn March 16th, save the date for the NW Family Expo. Ticket prices are moderate, but you can enjoy all there is to offer.

  • Vendors for local family attractions (Children’s Museum of Tacoma, Frog n Kiwi and Spring Free Trampoline)
  • Local restaurants (Dove Chocolate Discoveries)
  • Local vendors/businesses (Ikea, Smith Brothers)
  • Local services (dentists/doctors/Pierce County Health Department)

These are just a few of the vendors listed on their website. Take a look and buy a ticket. The reason I’m posting early is the 1st 100 ticket holders get FREE passes to Wild Waves! At only $6 per adult person over 12yrs old, that is a STEAL! So plan a great Spring and Summer with the NW Family Expo. Best of all, the proceeds to this event support our own wonderful Mary Bridge Hospital!

30 things to be thankful for

I love this list! So many great ideas for helping others and around Seattle!

Volunteer in Our Community

I believe in giving back to your community. I am also trying to instill in my boys a sense of duty toward something other than themselves. A duty to care for family and to care for the world. Over the last 2 years, since they were really able to understand this concept, we have done traditional things, like Giving Trees at Christmas, Food Drives at their school, Donations to the Tacoma Mission. However, many times that is giving of money, or goods, not necessarily ourselves. I am looking to find an opportunity for my boys and I to volunteer together.

As I walk through the journey of finding an opportunity for my kids to volunteer, I will post opportunities I find here. What might not work for my schedule, might work for yours. There is a lot of need out there. If we all chipped in, we CAN and WILL make a difference.

*Button picture can be ordered here:

Teddy Bears for Children of Deployed Service Men/Women

We are HUGE fans of teddy bears in our home. My husband has a collection of many bears he has acquired throughout his childhood and when the twins were born, they came home from the hospital to all kinds of matching furry friends. Each child chooses the “it” toy, the one key toy or blanket that will travel with them everywhere. I had my rag doll, made by my grandmother, Jenny, who went everywhere – college, Europe, and still sits in my room. My husband has Ba-Bear, and my boys have Baby Bear, Koala and Pooh. Baby Bear and Koala joined the family while my husband was on an 18month deployment. We had daddy record his voice in a voicebox, so when the boys gave the bears a hug, the bear said “Daddy loves you”. I think this is one of the reasons these two bears have become the “it” toy.
Donating $15 can give another child something huggable while their parent is away, for months at a time, on deployment. I can’t think of ANYTHING better!

Operation Gratitude Blog

Did you know that Operation Gratitude sends cuddly bears in care packages to our youngest Warriors — the children of deployed Military? Battalion Buddy packages come individually assembled in a box 8 1/2″ by 11″ by 5″, that closely resembles the “care packages” we send to our brave men and women serving overseas. Inside each box is the Battalion Buddy bear dressed in a “camo”-style jacket.

battbuds-patrioticTo learn more about the Battalion Buddy Program and how it got started, please go to:

Family Readiness Officers and battalion leaders wishing to **request Battalion Buddy packages should visit our website and/or send an email to for more information.

Each Battalion Buddy Care Package costs Operation Gratitude $15 to assemble and send to a Military child. Financial donations to support the Battalion Buddy Program can be made online here:Donate to Battalion Buddiesor by check made payable and addressed…

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