Just before the festival, my mom was hospitalized for a severe case of pneumonia. My sister and I spent many days before the festival and specifically the entire night before the event, sitting at her bedside in ICU. We were not even sure if we would be able to make it to the festival. So many of my friends and neighbors jumped in and filled all the gaps that I had left behind to pull everything together for the big day. The effort was incredible!
After being by my mom's bedside throughout the night, it was clear that she was stable enough for my sister and I to attend the festival on Saturday. We jumped in the car and drove two hours southbound to make it back. I felt like a bride late for her own wedding! When we skidded into the driveway, we had just enough time to shower and get down to the event for some of the last minute set up...and then it was "go" time. Everyone was in place and it all came together beautifully.
|My sister, Jana, and her husband, Andy - along with my long time friend, Carrie. They ran the Auction Table all day.|
|Here two of my neighbors, Carrie and Holly ran the donation booth! My sweet friend, Amy, from Promise686 helped too!|
|Notice the awesome HLV tees! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to get yours!|
|Look at how big our raffle table was!! The Auction was impressive, too!|
|Jenn and Nikki ran kept the hot dogs coming all day!|
|This is Amanda - the backbone of the whole operation! She and my other friend, Brooke are the two that started this whole thing months, and months ago. The two of them have worked endless hours to bring this day together. The fact that they gave up all that time for me means so much!|
|Don't worry! There was no fire, just some really generous Johns Creek firemen that added to the fun by bringing their trucks out.|
|Pass the Pumpkin contest!|
|Brian and I attempting to let everyone know how grateful we were to have their support.|
One of my favorite moments during the festival was when a little neighbor came to me with her own money that she wanted to add to the donation box. She dropped in $9 and some change. She was so proud and happy to be able to use her money towards a real life result....seeing Valor come home. Many have shared with me their excitement to participate in a cause in which their effort makes such a difference - and it really does. Because of the money we raised at the festival, through the blog and with the Promise 686 grant, we are more than half way to our total goal.
It was a great day... one of those rare occasions where you get to visually see the support that God has provided through the relationships in your life. I feel like my words fail to explain how grateful Brian and I are for all the hard work that was put into bringing it all together, in addition to all of those that came and participated and gave. We are richly blessed and deeply humbled.