Tuesday, April 26, 2011

KAJ Foundation Fund Raiser

I'm finally sitting down to blog about our KAJ Foundation Fundraiser.  This event has been in the works for almost 2 years.  For so long it just seemed like some thing in the distant future that we talked about.  It was an awesome series of events that brought us the venue, the entertainment, and all of the people that helped make it happen!  

We had it at Enoch's Stomp a very cool winery outside of Longview.  All of our "Gold Level" sponsors were displayed on the drive up. 

Here are Kory and Patrick putting the signs out Saturday morning.  

Patrick's Mom made this adorable candy table and these KAJ Foundation seed packets

I took a few pics of the beautiful property.  It was gorgeous and the weather was amazing.  All day Friday when we were trying to work the wind was blowing 40 mph.  Then Saturday it slowed down and stopped by late afternoon in time for the PERFECT weather for the event! Such a blessing from GOD!

Kory and Patrick doing something productive I'm sure

These 2 ladies are AMAZING!! Shelley Krupa and Teresa Knight have a decorating business called The Cozy Perch.  They donated their services for decorating and our friend Liz Gibson from church was also a tireless worker and awesome decorator!!!  They did an incredible job!!! They posted lots of great pictures on their blog, so go check it out and see their great pictures! http://wwwthecozyperch.blogspot.com

Our table
I can not say enough great things about our volunteers.  Here they are under their Volunteers tent (which they spent very little time in because they worked so hard!!!) Seriously, they were AWESOME.  Most of them are nurses from the NICU and the rest are some of the ladies that work at Patrick's office.  We had a few friends from church that coordinated the parking and Natalie was mine and Holly's right hand gal and Rand was our volunteer BOSS.  They were awesome. They worked so hard serving, cleaning, checking people in, and when the concert was over, they had that place cleaned up in NO TIME!  I know for a fact we could NOT have done it without them!!  

Ok, so you wanna know what we did for entertainment?  We had a private Five For Fighting concert!!  If you think you don't know him, look up 100 years or Superman on itunes and you'll recognize him.  He was AWESOME.  He was a great entertainer, funny, and the music was incredible.  Here he is doing his sound check.  We all got goose bumps when he did the sound check...that's how good he was.  He's one of those guys that sounds just as good live as they do recorded.  

I did a horrible job taking pictures but here are a few of the decorations.  They weren't completely done yet, but oh well.....I was a little.....uh....BUSY!

The majority of the night everyone was outside but there was food in the Lodge so the girls decorated a beautiful table for the food! The food was great...

Here we are with John (aka Five for Fighting...its not a band...just a guy with a band name.  he told us the story behind it, basically he had to come up with a name that wasn't just his own name.  He was watching a hockey game and there was a fight....you get 5 minutes in the penalty box for fighting.....there ya go. Five For Fighting!)  That is his daughter in the picture with us.  She sang with him on one song and sang her own song too.  She was great and a really spunky thing!

Before the concert started, we introduced ourselves and Patrick gave a little speech about our Foundation and how it came about.  It was a little emotional, so don't look too close at the pics or you might see tears.  

Right at sunset, the concert started and it was AWESOME.  We actually got to sit down and enjoy it (I felt like we hadn't sat down for 2 days straight!)!

I didn't think about videoing with my phone until the concert was almost over, but here are a couple of clips.  This is a song he dedicated to Jayde.  I caught the very end on video.  

This was the last song he sang and probably one of his most popular ones. Enjoy!

He was a great entertainer and so generous to do this concert for us.  If you like the songs, go buy them on itunes.  Maybe he gets a few cents out of that! :)

The event was a huge success.  There were close to 300 people there and seriously, nothing went wrong!! We couldn't believe it.  In a way it makes us never want to do it again because SOMETHING will HAVE to go wrong!!  When it was all said and done we raised $52,000!!!!!  Not bad for 4 rookie event planners/fund raisers!!!!  In all seriousness, we really feel like things were laid before us that totally made this thing happen.  From the money for sponsorships, to people offering services and items we needed, ticket sales, volunteers,  weather, FUN, all of it! We feel like GOD blessed this night and this event and we are so thankful!  We are excited to see where we are headed with this Foundation (so are the Neonatologists!!).

Now you know the KAJ Foundation!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

In the mean time...

****Before you read this blog....Did you notice my awesome blog makeover??!?!!!  My sweet friend Sharon did an ambush makeover on it.  She thought it was time to include Quinn!! haha!! Thanks Sharon! If you love it, you should see all the amazing things she does with her business Redbud Designs.  www.redbuddesigns.net CHECK IT OUT! She can do ANYTHING!!!*****

I'm still gathering pictures, etc. from our fund raiser so I'll have to wait to post about it. So, while you wait, I'll post lots of random pictures I like. 

klp and Gay Gay reading a bedtime story.....no klp did not break his leg, thats his new immobilizer that he sleeps in at night.  

klp and his PT Celia working on standing up straight and tall. Thank you to Elmo for providing the necessary distraction while klp works!

Oh dear....Q never saw this coming! I was able to stop it....as soon as I snapped this picture.  
Much better sweet brothers

Its kinda blury, but I love this picture of klp. He was laying down by me and looked so sweet. 

There is a park in Longview that is for kids of all abilities.  The boys love these big swings.  On this particular day, the swings were full so they shared!

Driving the fire truck

Q and a basketball. Always.

This might be one of my all time fav pics of Quinn.  

Q doesn't like his feet touching the grass.....he holds them up while he crawls....

I rarely use my umbrella stroller. I usually have both boys with me.  But this day I only had Q and just needed to make one quick stop in a store.  He looked like an elephant on a bicycle but oh well.  

Every time q wears these pants, the pockets turn inside out and hang out.  No matter how many times I put them back in, they fall back out. 

Quinn and Daddy catching up after Daddy got home from work.  A Phillips Phamily Phavorite for sure.  

klp loves to sit on this box in the corner.  He gets so excited when he climbs up there (it takes a lot of time and a lot of work, but he can do it!) and he just sits there.  

The drive home from lunch with Daddy was just too much for these two sleepy heads.  

klp has been really into wearing his hat lately. I love it so much!!  He points to his head and said "aaaaaa"

Still loving the bbal goal and our KD jersey!  klp can lean up against the wall independently and shoot standing up (here he's getting a little help from KLP) 

another evening at the park rocking in the car thingy...check out q's knees from crawling!  Yucky!  

OK there is a snippet of our goings on lately.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

KAJ Foundation

Some of you know about the following information already, most of you do not, so I am telling you now. 

It is the KAJ Foundation! 

We have some great friends here in Longview that we have known for almost 3 years.  They moved here from Kansas.  We have mutual friends so we knew they were going to be moving to Longview and were excited about building a friendship with them.  They ended up here about 3 months sooner than they expected.  The weekend they were in town closing on their house and moving a few of their things in, Holly ended up having an emergency C-Section at 28 weeks gestation.  Their daughter Addison weighed 1 lb. 11 oz.  Though she was three weeks older than our twins, she was very tiny like them.  Needless to say, I got a call from our mutual friend and our friendship with Patrick and Holly went into fast forward.  The NICU does that to you.  Kanyon had been home for a year by the time Addison was born, so in some ways we, and all our friends at church,  relived it again with Addison.  She spent about 80 days in the hospital and is now a spunky, sweet, talkative, CUTE CUTE little girl.  We have become close friends with the Briscoes, and not JUST because of the NICU thing.  But the connection we have with these micro preemies is a unique bond.  About 2 years ago, Patrick had the idea to start the KAJ Foundation in honor of our premature babies. (KAJ stands for Kanyon, Addison, & Jayde).

It is because of our experiences, our awareness, and our extreme gratitude towards the facilities, technology & staff that cared for our babies that we have started this foundation. It has become our passion & our goal to give back to GSMC's NICU and help make it the most advanced unit in the region. They gave our babies a fighting chance at life and we want to be able to help do that for hundreds of other premature infants born at GSMC each year. As with any hospital, GSMC has budgets & funding criteria and while their NICU is a level 3 unit, there are still things that they are not able to afford, things that they "go without" and equipment that they need to care for these precious babies in the best way possible. Often these items, although imperative and extremely helpful in insuring proper growth & development for preemies, get pushed to the back of the list or even left off because of budgets or funding situations within the hospital. Because our families know & experienced just how important these things are, we want to make sure that other preemies have the same fighting chance at life that our babies had.  We have such a desire to help this NICU because they went above and beyond for us.  I experienced other hospitals with Kanyon, and the feel of "home" that they created here in Longview, the personal touch they gave our whole family, and their investment in our lives was unmatched. The nurses here were SOOO knowledgeable and Dr. Chris went above and beyond to keep us informed as well as educate us and involve us in Jayde and Kanyon's care.  

Thus the KAJ Foundation has been born! Through our foundation and the funds we raise, we hope to help provide these babies with the important tools, supplies, & equipment that they need. We hope to be able to help GSMC's NICU & staff continue to grow & advance. We hope to keep it the most advanced unit in our region! As you can tell it is something that is very near & dear to our hearts. Something that we hope will be able to last thru our life times and beyond. Something that we pray will help a lot of babies, touch many lives, and Glorify our God! 

Since the Foundation was set up, we have done a few small things at the NICU with the money we had.  The funds were coming mostly from family and people that heard about it, but I personally, hadn't even told very many people about it.  I know there are people we are really close to that are hearing about this for the very first time.  

Well, this weekend the KAJ Foundation had our first fundraiser and lets just say that we are now ON THE MAP!!  I'll tell you all about it in the next post, because it is too much to add to with this blog. 

I just wanted to "introduce" everyone to our Foundation and let you know its there.  We are working on things like a website, etc. but we've been quite occupied as you'll learn in my next post.  Thanks for reading this.  Feel free to spread the word and remember us!  We pray that GOD will work through this foundation.  

Here  are Addison and Kanyon playing on a trailer back in the fall.  They are sweet little friends.  

Here is our "set up".  We use it when we go to places like March of Dimes Walk, NICU Reunion, etc.  

Here we are at last years NICU reunion.  

I have more pictures and way fun stuff to share, so stay tuned.  

(if you are friends with Holly and read her blog/email and parts of this sound familiar its because I copied and pasted some of hers!!!)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Kanyon's Birthday

Kanyon's birthday was kind of spread out but we managed to celebrate our favorite 4 year old!

Its always fun to open our presents from our Montana Family!! They already love this water toy and we haven't even hooked it up to the water hose yet!!

Aren't boxes always a gift in themselves!??!!

Someday soon, these boys will realize that pretty much anything one gets they both get to enjoy!! So they get double the birthdays!!

On his actual birthday, I was at Camp for my retreat, but Kory made sure the Birthday boy got a treat on his day. He had lots of cheetos at lunch and Kory took both of them to WalMart and let klp pick out a new "moomee" or movie.

As I mentioned, KLP brought the boys out to camp after naps that day so I could be with them a little bit. We all sang Happy Birthday to Kanyon and he got to eat some pizza for supper!

The next weekend was the weekend we decided to have a party. But that same day was his big Horse and Rider event out at Windridge, our hippotherapy place. Its a big open house thing with eating, silent auction, riders showing off, snow cones, and lots of other stuff. It was a fun day and fun for family and friends to watch klp and Kandy (the horse) do their thing.

On the way out there, Gay Gay was helping him practice making a 4 with his hands. In this case, his thumb works in our favor. The one on his left hand stays tucked up, but its perfect for making a 4!!!!

Here he is riding

and riding sideways

and making a weird face with his awesome PT Celia!!!

Nanny got to come out and watch. I took this picture right after klp was pointing at everyone's glasses. He pointed at Nanny's, PawPaw's, then his and said "MEEEEE!". Translated: "you have glasses, you have glasses, and I have glasses!! We all have glasses!" Smarty pants.

Enjoying cousin Caden's hat!

So after the horse show, mom and I went in to CAKE mode while the boys napped. We ate pizza at the house and later on our small group and family came over to eat cake. We had a basketball theme since klp is obsessed with it right now, he got a new goal for his birthday, and its March...basketball month (even though the party was April 2). My parents went through their house and got all our old jerseys we used to have and brought them so lots of people could wear jerseys to give it a basketball feel! It was fun!

Here are some of the kids playing in the sand box. klp was loving his Kansas jersey...too bad they lost.

q had on his bball shorts and shoes but we didn't have a jersey for for him so he wore the jersey for his team...THE SKINS!!

That night Butler and VCU were playing in the Final Four, so Luke Porter came dressed for his team. I mean really, you can't blame them for having to use electrical tape on a bib...who has a VCU jersey????

Minimal decor...this was it. Probably the ugliest worst cake I've ever made. It tasted yummy, so I guess that was the redeeming quality. Notice the Sixers jersey in the middle. OLD SCHOOL..its a Dr. J jersey. Of course its my dads. He was gonna wear it, but it was a little tight!

Me and Rachel! aka Larry Bird and Grant Hill.

Clint and Kory....Bobby Hurley and Jason Kidd

the men watching the game

Phillips Pham! Please notice the size of q's belly...and that was BEFORE cake! Seriously.

Nolan loved his cupcake

klp is still not a sweet eater. He wanted cake and ice cream so he had a plate but pretty much just pretended to eat it the whole time.

klp and Ro. I think she was trying to be nice and smile but really she wanted to keep watching TV.

All 3 Grant Hills. He was well represented...Amy had on an old one of ours from when the Pistons did that ugly turquoise jersey but she was gone by the time we took this picture.

Me and my 4 year old (with his new bball tattoo)

Birthday boy watching the bball game

Clint and Rachel stayed around after the party and got PJ's on the kids before they left...here is Nolan with his favorite part of the whole night...the guitar!

What's after PJ's?? A bedtime story!

sweet q playing the electric guitar

and another cutie q with a ball and his sweet arm band

we put his tat on his belly. He is still pointing to his belly and saying "ball" but the tattoo is long gone.

Here is the gift of all gifts....

q goes for the slam dunk approach.

klp got a KD jersey from Roselyn and Nolan (or really Uncle Clint...lets be honest)!

klp is OBSESSED with his goal. He is quite the shooter. While Q is the dunker, klp goes for the long range shot and he makes it!

We love the goal so much. He says "I ouuu BOOM!" That means he wants to play basketball. Somehow we started saying BOOM when you make a basket so basketball became "BOOM" and "babaaa" is a basketball goal. We hear those words A LOT. The next morning he had to shoot some hoops before church!

Here is a video Drew took for us....

We are so happy to have our Kanyon Luke!