Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Get Your Give On!

The Headlines:


Now's the time to teach a lesson.

We will take our blessings and give to a cause that matters to us.

Here's how we're doing it.


  


It's this time of year we all tend to have a lot of friends and family over.  Everyone feels more festive.  People come and go… us personally, we have a Halloween party, lots of different in-house dinner dates.  Thanksgiving.  We have a fairly decent size Christmas Eve Party.  That kind of stuff.  It's a good opportunity to… well, ask people for money.  Not for us.  For a cause.

I thought it was time we taught our kids a small life lesson about giving back.  Sure we give money to our church, my daughter raises money for the Girl Scouts with cookie sales, maybe a school fundraiser here or there but it's time to do a grass roots effort that they are, mostly, in charge of - from start to finish.  One they can see through and understand fully.

So the first thing to figure out was… our cause.  We decided on Alzheimer's Disease.  Specifically, the research to find ways to prevent it.  Because we all feel - memory matters.  Our family has been touched by it on both sides.  And while no ailment is easy this one is difficult for different reasons.  The body is working so the person is technically there.  But they are not.  They may appear okay but just below the surface they're slowly and steadily dying inside.  It is heart breaking for the person.   But painful for the people around them.

Our kids were in complete agreement.  We got a big glass jar with a lid on it and stuck it right by our front door so it would remind us to ask when someone enters or leaves our home.


I wrote out what, exactly, we were doing… where the money would go and how people could volunteer or get more information.

Only, my kids forgot to tell anyone at our Halloween Party about it.  Not one soul… oops.  Remember, I told you earlier this week Halloween was chaos.  But they did contribute money themselves.  The two of them dove into they their own "spending money" jars/piggy banks and put in their contributions to the cause.


They weren't stingy either - they made me proud.  Now, if they can only remember to tell everyone who comes over to give us their extra change so we can pass it on.  Yes, I see the irony in that last sentence.  Specifically, we're going to donate the money raised over the next several months to the Alzhemier's Prevention Initiative.  It's an international collaborative effort to postpone, reduce or prevent the onset of the disease.  They're associated with Banner Alzheimer's Institute and the Arizona Alzheimer's Consortium.  If you're interested in more information go to www.endalznow.org There, you can sign up for newsletters or volunteer opportunities.  Another source is here.

So if you take anything away from this post, I would say, "get YOUR give on" this season. Decide what matters to you and your children and teach them a lesson that may - arguably - matter more than the ones they learn in school.

Wish us luck…  I'm not sure the dollars will be too high but I'm also not sure that means as much right now.   See, the lesson will come through the effort.  The money, while important, is secondary.  Isn't it always the journey that matters more than the destination?   Here's to our safe travels.  And, hopefully, yours too!

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