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Charity Events

Megabus Making a Difference in NYC #BeTheEnd

megabus in NYC
megabus pink

This week I headed up to NYC to hang out with Megabus and LOVED it!

You see, every brand talks about Breast Cancer in October but Megabus brought it to the forefront in January by wrapping a bus and treating a group of survivors and their friends and family to a day in the city which included a stop of a viewing of The View at ABC studios!

I left my house at 4am to catch the 6:30 ride and loved every second!  I got there and hung out with women and really enjoyed hearing their story.  The bus ROCKED on the inside and out!  (Um, the Megabus I was on has a GIANT sunroof!  LOVED that!)

On Tuesday, every person who bought any rides with Megabus and their 100+ locations around the country, they donated $1 to Breast Cancer Research Foundation!  I heard they have an average day of 22,000 people buying bus tickets!  Check out Megabus and be sure to let them know on social that you love what you're doing! 

And... go watch my videos live from Periscope now on Katch.me.  I have a collection from my ride in NYC.  

Thanks Megabus for making a difference!  




The REAL Meaning of Christmas #RealMomBigGIVE

Yesterday was the 3rd #RealMomBigGIVE event with Kisses for Kyle Foundation at Holly Days Nursery in Horsham.  My phone died while setting up so I personally never got any pictures...and you KNOW I'm a picture nut.  I was pretty bummed about it since I didn't get to share much online before-during and after the event.... Nor did I have any to 'tell the story' of my experience.  But Boston and I really had a great heart to heart about it last night and it really felt amazing that I was FINALLY able to show him why he has grown up with a garage full of toys that he can't touch.  And the 'these are for boys & girls who need it more than us' comments all finally made total sense to him. 

So, needless to say this morning when Sharon Snyder, the mom to Kyle from Kisses for Kyle Foundation sent me a link and a million amazing pics - it was just the icing on the cake.  And it was the visual reminder that I needed to confirm that what I am doing is in the right direction.  It is ok to give more.  It is ok to believe in the good intentions of others.  It is ok to GIVE more than you RECEIVE during the holidays and the whole year for that matter. 

You see, personally, I had this internal struggle this year with so many things.  I decided I wanted to get away from the 'stuff' & anything that can be added to the 'mommy blogger' mentality with my business and get deeper into relationships that fuel my soul vs. sucking the life out it. haha.  And unfortunately, there was a LOT of soul sucking this year.  So to end it with seeing some of these amazing kids smiling again?  The best therapy in the world.

The essence of seeing my 7 year old help this little girl pick out a gift that he *thinks* she would love and she DID love?  Priceless.  Absolutely priceless.  Not to mention, I particularly love to talk to the moms of these kids.  So yesterday when I met so many amazing families who have been supported by Kisses for Kyle, I gravitated to the moms eyes.  I'm the type of person that lives for the in-person-part of life.  Yes, my job is 100% online - but there is nothing in this world that can take away two people making eye contact with each other.  I saw all kinds of eyes in front of me.  Women who sparkled with joy.  Some had pure sadness though.  Stress.  Exhaustion.  One mom I saw had a daughter going through chemotherapy at that moment.  My husband told Hudson (my 2 year old) to go give the little girl a hug and the mom stopped Hudson short of doing it.  I saw concern in her eyes.  And as another mother who has never and PRAY TO GOD never EVER has to deal with a child going through chemo, I personally wanted to hug her too.  She was super kind in saying that although she loved the thought of Hudson giving her little girl a hug, he couldn't in fear that it would compromise her immune system.  I never thought about that, honestly.  

But it totally made sense.  And then I found myself thinking about it. A child going through chemo - and she can't give or receive hugs.  As a person who lives in this life with the constant need of being touched, hugged, LOVED.... I wanted to cry for that sweet girl.  She was so full of spunk and Hudson really wanted to hug her.  She was full of funny quips and the whole cancer thing didn't seem to phase her.  I'd go on a limb to say that not everyday was a happy as yesterday was.  

Today I had lunch with a friend of mine that I've known since moving to Philly.  We ended up chatting till almost 3p!!  The best and the worst part about working for yourself.  You don't have someone working the clock with the 'proper lunch break' timing & honestly, it was a conversation I needed for a really long time.  I miss relationships with REAL women.  I feel like sometimes as women we get caught up in the gossip or the story that we forget that there are real human beings behind that story.  My conversation with my girlfriend is etched in that table we were sitting at for 2 hours & never to be repeated.  =)  But it was a really great reminder to me that no matter what someone looks like on the outside - whether it be by facebook or any other social media - until you walk a mile in their shoes - you have no idea the blisters on their toes that they're dealing with.  Or the skeletons in the closet.... 

One of the things we talked about was the blessings you receive when you become a mom.  But just like in anything, life is filled with ups and downs.  And remembering the blessings even when your house is full and you've got people digging in the fridge for food when you're TRYING to get supper on the table?  Yeah.  That house is MY HOUSE.  Not everyday - but almost every day of the week.  Insanity when the clock strikes 5!  And for many years I let that insane moment take me down cause I didn't think I could handle it.  So when I finally conquered the survival part of that crazy - it did not control me anymore than I allowed it to.  

I often wonder with these moms raising babies who get cancer.  That insane moment when you want to lose your mind over your kids turns into that moment when you want to hug them so tight that you never want to let them go.

I'm grateful for every second that my kids are healthy and living a vibrant & colorful life.  And moments like yesterday, I'm grateful to have the means to give to the 200 plus families who came.  And in fact, I'd go on a limb that 99% of the people there had no clue that I worked all year to be able to bring all those products.  But I'm totally ok with that.  Some kids actually asked me if I was Santa's Elf because I was dressed funny. Of course I am Santa's Elf.  Who else would I be?!?!  

That was yesterday.  Today?  I'm back to Boston & Hudson's mom.  And I'm grateful to all the toy companies who worked with me this year to make the #RealMomBIgGIVE happen once again.  And thankful to the families who pushed through whatever it was happening in their lives that day to be sure to be at this event.  It was the absolute biggest one yet.  

Cheers to curing cancer and many more holiday events!  Hug your babies tonite!


Giving with Kisses For Kyle

Giving with Kisses For Kyle

 

How is it possibly already December 9th??  I just can't believe how insanely fast this year has flown by.

I have an almost 10 month old.  He's perfect & precious in every way.  I often find myself seriously counting my blessings.  And today is no different. 

This past weekend my partner & dear friend Stephanie Glover & I got to experience an amazing event at Holly Days nursery in Horsham.  The event was with Kisses for Kyle Foundation where we worked all year to sponsor. 

You see, that really awesome gift guide you see on our site?  The one that has been viewed over 6,000 times?

We don't just pick out some random products on the streets to toss in there.  There is so much more that goes into these guides than that.  The guide is filled with a lot of sweat and PLAY!  We actually start our search in early August if you can believe that.  We keep our eyes peeled for the latest and greatest that brands are putting out for the holiday season.  

I also work with Toy Insider & The Big Toy Book and we put on events with major toy brands that we get to see first hand what is going to be hot each holiday season.  I've been involved with toys ever since I became a mom and started this blog.  I have such a fascination with them!  And a frustration - that is why I jumped right in.  My frustration with toys was that I could never find resources that would give me information on products that my son would enjoy playing with.  You see, I'd buy something and it would just sit there.  And it drove me crazy that I wasted money on toys that didn't fit him.  So that was my goal.  I set out to help bring awareness to toys and who they are the best fit for.  And in that expedition I have been blessed with stumbling along working with the biggest & best publication in the toy industry.  

And through my numerous attempts of trial and error - I began a safe track of getting products that fit my sons likes and interests.  From there it all snowballed to becoming a toy expert.  

Or... a real mom who is looking for the real & right toys for my kids and close ones to my family!

So... now that you have the back story - you might believe me if I tell you that a week ago, I had a garage that had been pouring at the seams with toys that I acquired throughout the year.  Toys that I personally played with and reviewed on this site or on air.  I'd say well over $5,000 in toys!!

So... each year has become bigger and better.  I'm hoping next year I can get a storage space because we don't have the space anymore. Why??  BECAUSE THEN MORE KIDS IN NEED WILL NOT BE LEFT OUT DURING THE HOLIDAYS!

So....with that being said.  This past weekend Stephanie and I spent the afternoon with some amazing families from Kisses for Kyle Foundation at Holly Days Nursery in Horsham.  (Holly Days, by the way is a HUGE support of Kisses for Kyle.  You gotta follow along with them & see how they give back too!)  Families that are affected with childhood cancer.  Some of the sweetest kids on the planet were there.  And to see their eyes light up when we handed their favorite gift to Santa for them to enjoy? 

Priceless. 

Please support this amazing organization.  Sharon Snyder has a heart of gold and has taken something that could have put her in a downward spiral and changed life as so many families know it.

Check out our facebook page for the pictures of the event and be sure to LIKE us as you may have a chance to win $500 in toys for your family!

MEGA THANKS TO OUR SPONSORS:  

Your contributions allowed us to provide drinks for the families and their kids.  Thank you thank you!

Just Between Friends, Reading & Western Mainline 

Comfy Cozy

Element Associates

The Abington Club

Warden Ettinger Group

Tuckerton Seaport's Lucky 2013 Online Summer Auction

Tuckerton Seaport will officially open its long awaited and highly anticipated Online Summer Auction on July 13th, featuring 13 lucky items with opening bids of just $13 each.  As they dry out from Superstorm Sandy, they are looking forward to getting back to business and having a little fun this summer. 

Bidders from throughout the state have watched this third annual fundraising event take shape over the last few months as items slowly but surely arrived on the auction site.  Much to the surprise of even the Seaport staff, over 100 items valued at over $15,000 were donated by local businesses. The Seaport hopes this innovative approach to fundraising will bring in strong community support for their educational programs. 

Thanks to funding events like this one, the Seaport never turns away a school who cannot afford the field trip cost.  Executive Director Paul Hart explained:  “Allowing supporters to bid from the convenience of their home computers any time of day makes it possible for more people to participate in this fundraising event easily. 

With such a wide variety of items and experience, I am sure there is something everyone would be excited to bid on.  Plus, you know that your bids will be supporting educational programs right here at the Jersey Shore.”  Tuckerton Seaport is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization that receives tremendous support from the local community for which we are tremendously grateful.  We also ask all of our guests to patronize the businesses who have generously donated to our auction as they are valuable community partners.

Bidding Begins at Just $13 On These Lucky or Unlucky Items:

 

  • The Oak Ridge Boys: 4 Concert Tickets
  • Lucky In Love All-Inclusive Romantic Getaway at Poconos Cove Haven
  • Viva Las Vegas at South Point Hotel and Casino Package
  • Reno Resort Casino Spa Package
  • A Lucky Party at Lucky Strike Lanes
  • Engleside Restaurant LBI $113 Gift Certificate
  • Schellenger’s Restaurant Wildwood $113 Gift Certificate
  • Chowderfest Cook-Off 2013 VIP Passes
  • Visit America’s Most Haunted Prison, Easter State Penitentiary 4 Passes
  • 13 SuperPretzel VIP Coupons
  • 13 Admission Passes for Broadway Comedy Club
  • 13 Lakewood BlueClaws Baseball Tickets
  • 13 Tickets to Radio Disney Dance Party at Tuckerton Seaport this September

Bidding will continue until August 13th, with additional items being added throughout.  Tuckerton Seaport encourages everyone to visit www.biddingforgood.com/tuckertonseaport to shop the auction catalog of incredible items.  For more information or to donate an item, please contact Brooke Salvanto at 609-296-8868 or brookes@tuckertonseaport.org.

KMart - March of Dimes® IMBORNTO® Contest

Think your child is the cutest ever? I sure do! Now’s your chance to make them a star! Enter Kmart’s March of Dimes® IMBORNTO® Contest and your son or daughter could be featured in a Kmart circular ad!

The winner will receive a trip to Chicago in August, complete with round-trip airfare for four, a hotel stay for three days and two nights and transportation to a photo shoot featuring them as the star of the show.

To enter, submit a recent photo of your child on Kmart’s Shop Your Way social shopping site, and fill in the blank for the following statement: “My child was born to ___.” Easy enough! Entries will be judged on originality, sincerity and how it conveys their unique talent.  

And, what’s even better is that Kmart will donate $1 for every entry to March of Dimes to support the organization’s mission of improving the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. 

 The deadline for entries is Saturday, June 22, so hurry and get your entry in soon! All kids up to age 10 are eligible to enter. To view complete rules, click here

Shop Your Way is a free, members-only program and shopping community that offers rewards, personalized deals, product reviews and services like e-coupons and e-receipts for faster returns and exchanges – join at ShopYourWay.com.