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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Give Back

I was cleaning the house the other day and I cannot believe how much "stuff" we have in our house.  As a combined family, we combined two households into one... which makes our house full and warm.  It makes me get this overwhelming feeling of how lucky we are as a family.  We are so lucky to have each other and we are lucky in the fact that our children do not go without. They may not get some of the things they WANT but they have everything they NEED.  If they want something, they have to earn it. This I am proud of.

I am a big believer in giving back to my community. We have a Relay for Life team here in Linn County (If you want more information, message me.. walk with us, donate or just come and hang out).  I want my children to learn to give back with a loving, willing heart. There is so much they can gain from giving to someone else with no strings attached. So, we walk for a night and raise money to fight cancer. We are team Dah-Feet. As Relay approaches, I see my older kids getting excited.  They have change saved in a change jar to turn in, and everyone puts change in it.  When my son gets his allowance, he keeps part, he saves part, and he donates a small portion. This makes me happy!

Sometimes, I think that we as a society can be selfish with our money and our time... I know I am. But I am trying to change. You can teach an old dog new tricks (LOL).

I guess I am on this "give back" tangental today because I saw the generosity of so many women last Saturday night. Last Saturday night, I attended Macaroni Kid Cedar Rapids/ Iowa City's Mom's Night Out! It was amazing! And women could donate to two local charities that help kids and families... and get raffle tickets.  I was helpig with the event (handing out tickets, doing name tags) and we thought our little folding table would work for the donated items. To my surprise, it was OVERFLOWING halfway though. It sent tears to eyes to see all of the wonderful things that were donated. I was in a great moment of abundant joy. Women who are coming together donated all of this out of their hearts. Love it!

The MK Mom's night out event was amazing. I was one of the speakers and I loved talking to all of the women about taking their own time outs. How to rejuvinate as a mommy! It was also a wonderful night to spend some time with other MK moms that I get together with monthly for our girls night out gatherings. They are a bunch of incredible women who have come into my life. Amazing women... funny, strong, smart, and amazing!

So, mom's night out really inspired me to get my kids more involved in giving back.  Over the next 6 months we are going to volunteer with a couple of things; as always, here are some ideas:
* Serve dinner at a soup kitchen
* Prepare dinner at a soup kitchen
* Read books to kids in the hospital
* Help a women's shelter (I would take my older girls here)
* Volunteer time in a retirement home. Play bingo, make crafts, read, listen

We will start our first adventure in April.  I have made plans for us to take the dog to the retirement home and have the kids visit some folks after lunch on a Sunday. Maybe we will even sing old church hymns.

Macaroni Kid Mommies from Mom's Night Out- some of the most amazing women I know!

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