Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Goodbye to 2014!!!!

We're screaming, "GOODBYE 2014!!"
I feel like with today being New Year's Eve, I had to write something.  The problem is though that I have given this a lot of thought and really couldn't decide what to write.  2014 has been a year of the highest highs and the lowest lows and I'm not too anxious to relive any of it to be honest.  If you've ever had a child with a serious illness, you can understand the stress that brings and 2014 started out scary for us as a family.  Lainey was about to enter into the hardest phase of her treatment and we didn't know what to expect.  I was training for my first half marathon and finding strength I never knew I had.  Just as Lainey was entering the maintenance phase of her treatment and we were exhaling a little, I was diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer.  It was the ultimate sucker punch that I never saw coming. I finished my half marathon (Go Team Lainey 9:16 and many thanks to Tricia, KP, Cindy, Sarah and Emily), then started chemo, followed by double mastectomy and radiation.  Somewhere in the middle of the biggest fight of my life, I decided starting a non-profit to help others was a GREAT idea! (Must have been the meds, ha!) Couldn't have done it without Dianna Bacon being my partner in crime.  Over and over again though, God showed up and gave us all everything we needed at just the right time.  Suffice it to say, it's been a LOOOOONNNNNGGG year!  I am not gonna lie, it's been a LOT and at times I was exhausted and past exhausted.  My husband and family will tell you that I heard over and over again, "Stop doing so much, you have to take care of yourself first, everything else can wait."  But I just felt like God had given me this opportunity to share my story and I needed to do it.  I have no regrets, but boy am I READY to put 2014 behind us and move into 2015 with a bang!  We still have almost another year of Lainey getting chemo and lots of surgeries for me but that's ok because by God's grace we're both HERE! I will be starting some contract work again to finally make money again, along with focusing on building the Foundation, but most important of all, focusing on my family.  Loving on these beautiful babies God chose me to be the mother of and spending time with my husband, who unfortunately through all of this really got the short end of the stick but has been incredibly supportive.  I don't just love this guy, I LIKE him, like really, really LIKE him.  He's my favorite person to hang out with in the whole wide world, seriously. I'm not a fan of New Year resolutions, but I am of new beginnings.  This is a new beginning for us ALL, not just my family, but yours too!  Take stock of your life, learn new things, break out of your comfort zone and make a new friend, go back to church, just shake things up, listen to some new music, it feeds the soul!  I love the old saying, "If you keep doing what you did, you'll keep getting what you've got."  It's really that easy, we make life so much more complicated than what it really is.  Start a bucket list because you want to, not because you NEED to.

Every night after I say prayers over each of the girls, Lainey always insists on saying her own prayers too.  It goes the same every night, she's very dramatic about it, throws her head back, closes her eyes tight and says, "Dearw Gawd....." she inserts the most random things in there, sometimes it's Cheetos, a dog she met at the park, but she always says a couple things, then stops abruptly and says loudly, "WHAT ELSE?"  Then I'll say something she might have forgotten, and again she says, "WHAT ELSE?" This will go on forever if I let her, she's a great bedtime staller :-).  So today I say to all of you, "WHAT ELSE?"  What else in your life do you want to do or learn, what relationships do you want to fix?  Find out what your "WHAT ELSE?" is and just like Lainey, don't stop asking yourself that question until somebody cuts you off with "Enough already!" and then just like her, you can say, "I'M NOT DONE YET!!"  Oh, the lessons I learn from these kids.  Thank you all for following us, praying for us and believing in us.  My prayer for all of you is that 2015 is full of excitement and most of all, LOVE.  Love for yourself, for others and most of all, for God!  AMEN!
We're all looking straight AHEAD to 2015 (Sorry, I couldn't resist, AHEAD :-)

Monday, December 29, 2014

From have to HAD

Today I moved from a have to a HAD. I've  gotten so used to saying I have breast cancer that it feels weird to say I HAD breast cancer. Weird for sure but FANTASTIC at the same time! I had my last follow up apptmt with my Radiologist at UTSW since my radiation therapy is complete and she said, "Congratulations, things look good, I'll see you in a year for routine follow up." I also met a woman in the waiting room who was just starting radiation today. She complimented me on my hairstyle. I actually have enough hair to start having one of those again too! I was telling her how many rounds of chemo, surgery, radiation and then I said, "I had Stage 3  breast cancer." HAD, that single word echoed in my head right as I said it. I HAD breast cancer, wow, as in past tense! I walked away from that conversation with a different perspective, I'm now officially a HAD instead of a have. At the same time, any survivor will tell you that cancer is always in their review mirror, every day they glance up, knowing it's there and hoping it stays right where it's supposed to be, BEHIND them. I'm sitting here now at the cancer clinic getting my Herceptin drip, which I will continue to get every 3 weeks through May. I also start the long process of reconstruction soon with multiple surgeries scheduled in 2015 to become my new normal. All of this AHEAD of me though, new and exciting things on the horizon for me, Lainey and this wonderful Foundation God has given us the opportunity to help others through. So today, when I look in my review mirror and see cancer back there, I just put the pedal to the metal, and give this life all I've got, moving full steam ahead. If it catches me again one day, so be it, but I've got odds on me and the one riding shotgun with me. He's brought me this far, so I'll keep trusting in HIM and know that "it is well with my soul!"  Happy New Year!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Introducing the fabulous Ms. Eliza


I have had the incredible pleasure of spending a few minutes of every Monday through Friday for the past six weeks at radiation with Ms. Eliza.  It's amazing what happens when you talk to people and hear their story.  First of all, she takes public transportation to get to radiation and is never late, which was astonishing to me since I drive myself and end up late :-).  When I first met her, she walked in with a bright smile and I said, "How are you today?" she answered with a simple, "Blessed to see another day Honey, God is good!" and for the past 28 days I've seen her after that, always the same answer.  When you start your day off that way, it makes the rest of the day so much easier, doesn't it?  I think many of us are guilty of checking Facebook or grabbing coffee before we take a moment to say a prayer over the day that is before us, but not Ms. Eliza.

Over the course of radiation, I've met several strong women who I've traded stories with but hers is a very special one.  Ms. Eliza at the age of 69, has survived more tragedy in her life than most of us could comprehend.  She's lost her mother to breast cancer, lost two grown children suddenly, and currently has three remaining children, one of which is in the hospital with heart issues.  Through all of this though, she has a STRONG faith in God and continues to help others in her community.  She told me they call her 'Soup Kitchen' because if you're hungry, you come to her house and somehow she'll find a way to feed you.  She said, "They call me Annie, Granny, Momma, you name it, I answer to it."

I'm not sure why God brings everyone into your life, but I do know that each person you meet is meant to teach you something.  When I gave Ms. Eliza her Wallet of Love this week, I also gave her a note with it, explaining how much of an inspiration she is to me and how blessed I am to have met her.  Women like her are few and far between, when you hear the term 'it takes a village', Ms. Eliza is definitely a part of that village that steps up to raise those that 'need some raisin'.   She doesn't have a computer, doesn't know about social media, but when I explained to her that I wanted to share her story, she looked me in the eye and said, "Please Baby, please do."  She's battling breast cancer with courage and grace of the best kind, straight from God.

This wallet was given in honor of the very special father of one of my best friends who we lost this week to cancer, we'll miss you Dad aka Bill Tweeden. Thank you Ms. Eliza for being who you are and inspiring so many of us with your faith.   She is, quite literally, Love Personified.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Our Avery bird


THIS kid, my shining star, Avery. Y'all hear so much about her little sissy but never enough about her. It's hard for me as a mom at times knowing that Lainey and I share something that I hope and pray that Avery never, EVER has to share. I can only imagine how hard it is for her though, watching her baby sister go through all of this only to have it happen a few months later to Mommy too. As parents, you try to do everything in your power to protect your kids and there are days I struggle, knowing I couldn't do that for these sweet babies. I know it's not my fault, but still, it's hard. She is smart, kind, FUNNY, curious, loves to sing and has a beautiful voice. She's a SURVIVOR too though, not many 5 year olds have weathered the storm she has. We have challenging days sometimes explaining why Lainey is getting away with a little more than she should since she's on her "bad medicine" (steroids). Does she fully understand that, no, but one day she will and my prayer is that like us, she'll become stronger because of all of this. She's our "Bird", that's been her nickname since she was a newborn. She's also my little nurse when I'm having a hard day she'll bring me a blanket, crackers or just want to hold my hand as I walk down the stairs. For every moment I curse her defiant spirit of 'I can do IT!!', it makes me a little sad, knowing she's right. I want to savor every moment with them because time sure does pass fast. I don't care what my kids grow up to be or how much money they make. The only thing I want them to be is kind, respectful and good human beings. If they become millionaires but are arrogant and rude, I have failed as a parent. But THIS precious bird, I just know is going to SOAR one day and I'm so lucky to have a front row seat!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Wallet of Love Recipient - Ms. Betty is Shaping Little Minds

Ms. Betty & Dianna, Board President, LILTC

It takes a BIG HEART TO SHAPE LITTLE MINDS and that is what Ms. Betty does on a daily basis!

She is a teacher of children ages 18-24 months (that's the age Lainey was when she was diagnosed with Leukemia).  I've personally known Ms. Betty for 7 years and when I learned she had breast cancer this year my heart broke!  Ms. Betty helped me raise both my babies years ago just like she does for so many other families.

I was personally able to deliver her Wallet of Love and visit with her briefly.  She is looking strong and back at work full-time.  During radiation she was only able to do half days most of the time...she said she knew exactly how Kelly must be feeling these days..."it can make you exhausted." But she said her energy is starting to come back as well as her hair : ) You wouldn't know it but Ms. Betty is in her 70s...can you believe she spends her days running around after toddlers?!  Bless her!

The look of surprise on her face when I delivered her Wallet of Love was of absolute gratitude and beauty.  It is the very reason that I know God led me to meet Kelly and be on this path with her and this Foundation.

LOVE IS LOUDER!
-Dianna, Board President

"Let all you do be done in Love."

Friday, December 5, 2014

Meet brave Jaxon

Jaxon is another recipient of a Wallet of Love. In the words of his mother, "2 year old Jaxon went in to the doctor for a normal visit to get his iron levels checked, and the outcome was something very unexpected. His platelets were low, as well as his white blood cell count being irregular and he was immediately sent to Dallas childrens hospital for more testing. Early morning, September 9th, 2014, he was Diagnosed with 'Pre-B ALL' Leukemia. He has weekly visits for chemo, with the occasional stays in the hospital from the toll therapy. He has an older sister who is 7 and she misses him when he is gone weeks on end. Please pray these next 3 years go smoothly and everything turns out okay."

We are all praying for this family and know that Jaxon will be just fine!  Fighting this battle involves the entire family just like Lainey's 5 year old sister Avery, his 7 year old sissy needs to be shown lots of love too.  Send it up today friends, love grows when we join together!  Please continue to share our Foundation with friends, you can donate here by clicking at the top of the page on Donate AND on our Facebook page by clicking on Give.  



Thursday, December 4, 2014

OUR VIDEO IS FINALLY HERE!!!!!!

I can't EXPLAIN how excited I am to make this announcement, OUR VIDEO IS DONE!!!!!
I am issuing my disclaimer now though, have your tissues ready, this one will get you, but in a fantastic good way by the end!  Thank you to the wonderful folks at the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of North Texas for sharing the raw video footage so I could use it to help tell our story and the AMAZING team at Capture the Market led by Kimberly Scott who did a ROCKSTAR job of editing!  Please, PLEASE share this with your friends!!  We need to continue to raise funds to help all of these families and the more we share this video, the more exposure we'll get and we will be able to continue to SPREAD THE LOVE!!!  JUST CLICK BELOW.....

Wallet of Love Recipient: Meet Imogene



Meet Imogene...a sweet, wonderful woman battling squamous carcinoma of the jaw for the 2nd time. Her first battle began in 2009 but cancer reared its ugly head again this year.  Ms. Imogene is a mother and grandmother and when she is healthy enough continues to substitute at a district daycare...loved by many of the kids there!

Her Wallet of Love was sponsored by the loving Kennedy family of Frisco, TX who wanted to pay a special tribute to their father & grandfather, Rick Kennedy, who lost his battle to cancer this fall.

We ask for prayers this week as Ms. Imogene fell in rehab and had to have 8 stitches in her head and was placed back in the hospital.  They also had to stop treatment for the time being. Due to the treatment for the jaw cancer she has only been able to have liquids (no solid food or chewing).

We ask for prayers that her strength is regained and she is able to get back on track with her chemotherapy and other treatments soon.

Thank you to the Kennedy family for helping Love Is Louder Than Cancer show Ms. Imogene that LOVE IS LOUDER.

"Let all you do be done in Love."



Friday, November 28, 2014

T-Shirts have arrived and are on SALE!!!!

BLACK FRIDAY SALE!! Our NEW tshirts are here!! If you are viewing on a mobile device, be sure to scroll to the bottom of the page and click on Web Version, then click on SHOP above. Today through Cyber Monday, buy more, save more! One for $20, Two for $30 or Three for $40. We have ladies cut, which I'm wearing a Medium here, youth sizes and men/unisex sizes. SUPER soft, this will become your favorite shirt. Kids sizes run a little big, all else is pretty true. All proceeds go to our foundation! Local pickup is available or shipping is $3 per shirt.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Sunday, November 16, 2014

10 sessions of radiation down, 23 to go!

 
 
Why do I have that old song from Smokey and the Bandit in my head, "I've got a long way to go and a short time to get there....."  but that's how I feel right now with this radiation, WHEW!  33 sessions, Monday through Friday for six and a half weeks total and I've got 10 down!  So far, so good, I'm seeing some minor skin irritations but nothing serious at this point so we're thankful for that. 
 
Lainey is doing SO good right now, her hair is CRAZY, I call her Richard Simmons because she loves wearing her headbands right now and she has this huge mop of blonde curls, it's AWESOME!  She is loving preschool and is the best napper in her class, ha!  Sundays are her favorite because she really loves going to church and "talking to Jesus."  We are looking forward to the holidays this year with lots of fun stuff planned. 
 
Obviously I've been keeping myself busy with all of these Wallet of Love applicants.  I can tell you though, I wasn't prepared for the mental part of absorbing all of these stories.  When I started this journey to start a non-profit, my goal was to help people financially but even more so, just to say to them, YOU ARE NOT ALONE.  When I read through every application we've received and I meet some of these families, my prayer seems to be, over and over again, "God, please give me the STRENGTH I need to see this through and help these families."  I have NO doubt that this is what God meant for me to do, so I know that He will give me what I need, not to just see this cancer fight through, but to be a voice of hope for these families.
 
As we enter into this wonderful holiday season of giving, please keep us in mind if you are having a holiday party of any kind, tell your friends about us.  If you have a company that supports non-profits, tell your boss about us.  Know of a friend that has lots of connections who could help us spread the word, send them an email with our blog and/or Facebook link.  I know we need all the help we can get fundraising and I'm also trusting that God will send us in the right direction to connect with people that will help us.  As always, THANK YOU, for praying for Lainey and I, for opening your hearts and your wallets for these sweet families and for showing the world LOVE IS LOUDER THAN CANCER!!!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Meet sweet Kambre and her strong daddy....

In the words of Kambre's daddy, "Through several attempts of going to the doctor trying to find out what was wrong with my daughter's very bad headaches and vomiting, she was admitted to the ER and had a CAT scan performed.  A mass was found on her brain, which was one of the worst times in my life to hear something like that, you never expect to hear that about your daughter. She was then transferred to Children's Medical Center Dallas, they did an MRI on her and found a lime sized tumor. After removal, the pathology came back that it was cancerous, grade IV Medulloblastoma. She was also diagnosed with hydrocephalus and she had to have a permanent shunt put in. After our 30-day stay in Children's hospital, we are now undergoing chemotherapy." 

Friends, sweet Kambre was diagnosed just 4 days before her 5th birthday, when this baby should have been playing with Barbies and eating her birthday cake, she was starting the fight of her life instead.  Kambre and her daddy are a two person team. In addition to helping his daughter fight cancer, he's a single parent.  I can tell you, it takes a STRONG family to fight cancer, so this single dad needs prayers for strength as he starts down this journey with his sweet baby girl.  As you're at church today, please say some extra ones to cover them in prayer and send all the extra love you have today their way!

Meet Derek, another wallet of love delivered!


When I finished up radiation Friday, I had the pleasure of meeting this family and personally delivering their wallet to the hospital. Derek was diagnosed with Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in October. He is currently a senior in high school and excels in his academics.  He plays tenor drums in the marching band and is active in Robotics team and UIL math and science competitions.  He's busy now trying to get caught up on missed class work (HS and community college courses) and his college applications.  He's interested in Computer Engineering and looking at University of Texas and several other fabulous schools.
 
We shared some cancer humor and stories. I continue to be thankful God has chosen us to help families in this way and will continue to pray for God's healing and strength for all of them.
 
Hook 'em Horns Derek or whatever school is lucky enough to have you join them! Thank you to mom and dad for trusting us to share your story and your time Friday.
 

Friday, November 14, 2014

More wallets of love DELIVERED


I think I've slept 8 hours in the past week, or at least that's how I feel, but it's all for a GREAT reason!

WE ARE HELPING PEOPLE!  

God has given us this amazing opportunity to shine a light for families that are fighting cancer.  

In the past week, we've given away 5 WALLETS OF LOVE!  

We had the amazing opportunity to personally deliver one of them yesterday to this sweet gentleman.  Friends, meet Esteben and his amazing mom Amanda!  He just turned 9 (happy belated birthday!), is in 3rd grade and was diagnosed with Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH) in June of this year.  You can read more about it here: http://www.histio.org/lchinchildren.

Some of his FAVORITE things:
Movie: Godzilla/Jurassic Park
Sport: soccer/football
Team: Brazil and Dallas Cowboys/Seahawks
Toy: action figures 
Board Game: LIFE
Video Game: Yugioh and Pokémon

I also love that he told his older brother ALL of the gift cards in the Wallet of Love were just for him! :-)  

Lainey went with me on this delivery and LOVED Esteben's dinosaurs!  

Please keep this sweet family in your prayers.


video

                  Love is LOUDER than cancer!

Mark those Christmas cards off your list, donate instead!


It's about to be the HAPPIEST time of the year, right?  

So let me guess, right now the words CHRISTMAS CARDS are on your to do list??!!  

I've got great news, you can take them off your list NOW!  

Here's how:

1.  Just click on the DONATE link above, make a donation
2.  Choose one of the cards below and share it on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram
3.  Invite your friends to click the share button on your photo and join you
4.  MARK CHRISTMAS CARDS OFF YOUR LIST and pat yourself on the back for being smart AND pretty (or handsome) along with helping families fighting cancer.





Thursday, November 13, 2014

World Kindness Day + RAK Cards


Today, November 13 is WORLD KINDNESS DAY...what will you do TODAY to put a smile on someone's face...maybe its a loved one or possibly a stranger?  Either way TODAY is the perfect day to SPREAD THE LOVE and show the world that LOVE IS LOUDER THAN CANCER.



We are also happy to announce that our Foundation is ready to start taking donations regularly.  We have a safe, secure way to DONATE.  You may do so by clicking the above "Donate" button and it will take you directly to the secure EFT website which accepts credit, debit and echecks.

We are also overwhelmed that so many of you have responded to our Random Acts of Kindness Cards.  We would LOVE for you to help us SPREAD THE LOVE and help others learn about LILTC.

Now that our donation page is up and running - if you donate a minimum of $10 we will send you 15 RAK cards.



Remember your gesture of KINDNESS doesn't have to cost money...you can simply  hold the door for someone, help load their car with groceries, roll up their trash bin...anything to help restore a little more humanity in today's world!

"Let all that you do be done in love. 1 Corinthians 16:14"


Friday, November 7, 2014

Meet Tina, our very 1st "Wallet of Love" Recipient



LILTC friends, meet Tina. She is a busy single mother to three amazing children including one with autism. A breast cancer survivor who is cancer free (can I get an amen??!!) but has gone through SEVEN reconstructive surgeries (most recent one was just Oct 2nd) in the past 3 years to rebuild her breasts from the radical double mastectomy that saved her life. She will still have at least one more surgery in 2015. Due to numerous complications, which are unfortunately a big reality for breast cancer survivors, she is struggling to make a steady income and obtain promotions. 

Somehow through all of this though, Tina works full-time as a special education assistant, working with special needs adults and works two other jobs, including working for an autism waiver provider helping those on the spectrum. Tina has remained positive, gracious and is clearly an amazing example of strength to her children. 

It is with GREAT pride that I announce Tina will be our first "Wallet of Love" recipient! Tina's wallet is given in memory of the extraordinary husband and father, Edward M. Stuhl. A huge thank you to the entire Stuhl family and their friends for their generous donations to make this possible. 

Thank you Tina for sharing your story and your wonderful family with us! 

Please include Tina and her beautiful family in your prayers and join me today in showing her that love is so much LOUDER than cancer!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Announcing...Wallets of Love!



I am SO incredibly proud to be able to announce this, I have tears in my eyes.

We are officially kicking off our core assistance program from the Love Is Louder Than Cancer Foundation which is called "Wallets of Love"!

We had a wonderful community that came together after Lainey's leukemia diagnosis and donated gift cards to us.  Everything from Chickfila to CVS and they were incredibly helpful. So much so, that we decided we wanted our core program to be modeled after it. 

I am proud to announce that one of the ways we are putting all of your hard earned money to work is by providing families who are fighting cancer and dealing with cancer related surgeries our "Wallet of Love" which will be full of gift cards for gas, groceries, pharmacy and restaurants to help them with their basic needs during this difficult time. Our average wallet will include around $300 in gift cards that will be customized for each family's needs. They also include our story and a list of helpful online resources that helped us through our fight. 

We are currently working with several DFW area hospitals to connect with families needing assistance and will be introducing some of them to you very soon. 

I couldn't have done this without all of your love, support and donations and ask that as we enter this fabulous holiday season you keep all of these families in your prayers. 

Thank you to my husband for countless nights of giving baths and putting our girls to bed, so I could work on foundation things and Dianna Bacon for being the best board VP a girl could ask for! We have several other board members you'll be meeting soon too! 

This is my purpose, THIS is why God chose our family to go through these trials, so that we could turn all of this bad into something powerful and good and to show the world that love is and will always be so much LOUDER than cancer! Amen!

"Let all that you do be done in love. 1 Corinthians 16:14"

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Granny Warner and Building a Legacy

Meet Granny Warner.  Today is her birthday and even though she's gone, there's still lots of reasons to celebrate.  I have had the unique pleasure to have two amazing grandmothers the majority of my life to learn from.  We lost my Granny two years ago and each year on her birthday, I want to honor her and what she stood for.  

Nobody loved babies more than my Granny and this is a picture of her holding our Avery with that perfect familiar smile she always had when a new baby was around.  She was so much more than a grandmother to just her own grandchildren, she was everybody's 'Granny Warner'.  Sometimes it seemed like she raised half of our small town and I'm sure there would be a few who said she did.  

My Granny was old school, full of lots of "bless your hearts", "gimme some sugar" and "y'all get you somethin' to eat".  She loved Jesus, her family, cooking and her community, in just about that same order.  If she wasn't crocheting a blanket for a new baby about to be born, she was canning apple butter, beans, cooking up something in her small kitchen or going somewhere to help a friend.  She was everything to me, the quintessential grandmother that you wish everyone could have.  Make no mistake though, Granny Warner wasn't a softie, she kept us in line and ran a tight ship.  She could raise a finger at any of us, no matter our age and you'd better believe we would pay attention and answer with a firm, "Yes ma'am."

When I went away to college, I wrote her a letter and told her I was homesick, she wrote me back directly (true southerners will understand the use of 'directly' here :-) and her advice was simple.  Find yourself a good little Baptist church, go when the doors are open, read your bible and everything will be just fine.

After Lainey got diagnosed last year, I felt my Granny so many times.  I asked her to be Lainey's angel and watch over her and somehow to send me the strength I needed to make it through all of this.  I had a particularly hard day at the cancer clinic last fall when Lainey was at the top of her weight gain and steroid treatments.  She had gained 8 lbs in three weeks, 30% of her body weight and it had taken it's toll on her, she could barely walk.  I was trying to be as strong as I could, but it was SO hard that day.  Then, in walked the doctor/clowns at Children's who visit sometimes to cheer up the kids during treatment.  One of them pulled out a ukulele and they started singing, "You are my sunshine." I lost it, the tears started flowing.  That was one of my Granny's favorite songs, she sang it to us all the time and we had them play it at her funeral.  I just knew it was my Granny's way of telling me to hold strong in my faith and it would all be ok.

I tell you all of that, to tell you this about my Granny.  At her funeral service, the preacher reminded us that we each preach our own funeral through our actions each day, because those are the things people will remember about you when you're gone. Nobody had to think up good stories about my Granny to share that day, there were so many, it was hard to decide what to include. Each and every day we're all deciding what our legacy will be, through our actions, how we treat people, so choose wisely. My Granny came from a time when if you gave someone your "word" it meant something and we helped our neighbors, everybody pitched in if times were hard for one.  I've spent a lot of my life not being as focused on building a legacy, I was more focused on building a bank account. Don't get me wrong, we all like nice things, me too and that's fine, but I want to be remembered one day for what I did, NOT what I had. 

I'm so thankful for my family who have taught me through leading by example, my girls who I try to pass that on to always and all of you, who teach me something new everyday. I am so incredibly proud of the Love is Louder Than Cancer Foundation that we are building, with your help, and I have no doubt that Granny Warner is smiling down on me today saying, "You've done good Kelly D, you've done good."


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