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Kansas City MO 64131

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Filtering by Tag: charity

LET'S WALK

Cindy Maddera

Six years ago, Terry said “Hey! Come do the AIDS Walk Open with us!” The AIDS Walk Open is a large charity event for the AIDS Walk of Kansas City. Combine mini golf with a pub crawl and some golf teams in crazy costumes and that’s the Open. There’s day drinking and laughter and ridiculousness and I am usually in bed by nine o’clock every time I participate. This was also true for the year I volunteered. Most of us skipped out on the Open last year. No one was in the mood for it, but this year Bradley decided to coral all the cats into teams for this year. Another fun fact? Six years ago was my first Open. That’s when I met Greg and Bradley. It was also their first Open. Out of our three teams on Saturday, only me, Greg and Bradley had ever participated in the AIDS Walk Open before.

Passing torches.

We had a really great time. Wilson brought a pink bucket filled with dollar store crap, including dollar store fingernail polish. My nails are still a light shade of pink. I’m not used to having painted nails and every time I glance at them I do a double take. Then I remember, “Oh yeah… I painted my nails pink while we waited for our turn at Sidestreet Bar.” We made it to eight out of eleven bars. You need six to qualify for prizes. The people who win every year are the ones who buy mulligans to reduce their points. I don’t have that kind of money. Particularly this year. Wow, was I not good at mini golf. It seems pretty straight forward. Hit ball into hole. One of those mini golf courses was covered in cue balls. There was no straight forward. I could have spent a fortune on mulligans.

Bistro 303 ended up being our last stop before heading over to Missie B’s for the closing ceremony. Belinda was in charge of the course there and she said “you’re helping with the memorial flags this year right?” By this point I had been drinking a lot of gin and I enthusiastically nodded my head and replied “YES!” I am not one of those people who gets so drunk that they can’t remember what happened while they were drinking. So it looks like I am helping out with the Memorial Team for the AIDS Walk this year. This morning I went over and activated my donation page and updated my picture. I have until April 27th to beg for donations. If you feel like giving to this great cause, you may donate to my donation page here. You can also get to that page by going to Linky-links and then charities in the navigation bar at the top of my website. People who donate will get a 4x6 print of their choosing from the photos posted in the photography section of my website.

Thank you!

THANKFUL FRIDAY

Cindy Maddera

I had planned Monday as a vacation day in anticipation of having a hangover from our progressive dinner. Except when I woke up Monday morning, I felt just fine. I used the day to do some of the things I didn't get done on Sunday. I finished the laundry and made ghee. I watched Room and wrote a blog entry. I dusted the house and rearranged some elephants. I brushed my teeth but didn't wear a bra all day. Truth be told, this all stuff I would have done if I had been hungover. I just would have been more grumbly about it. I am not good at taking a vacation day unless it is vacation for actual travel. But hey, for some people having some time to dust the house with out interruption is vacation worthy. I'm talking about me. I'm the only person on the planet that would think dusting is a vacation activity. I'm planning a whole week of vacation that involves cleaning out a basement. 

Looking at my calendar today, I realized that taking Monday off to dust was not a bad idea at all. Last night was the AIDS Walk Kickoff party. It's official. We are moving into serious fund raising season. Last year I decided that I wanted to help out a little more, not with donations, but with my time. I told Terry that we'd get the flags for the walk organized and on hangers before the walk and I still want to make that happen. Terry, we're making an IKEA trip soon and having a flag organizing social. I'd like to make that whole thing a bit easier for him because that day is hard enough. Of course, I'd also like to raise some money. My AIDS Walk Fundraising page is up and active! Any way, there's going to be a lot of AIDS Walk things coming up and I want to be involved even it means that I will have less time for dusting and being a hermit. 

I am grateful for both of those things. That is, I am thankful for the days I can be a hermit and I am thankful for the activities that are coming up that do not allow for hermitage. I am also thankful to have any part in fundraising for the AIDS Walk. My experience with the AIDS Walk KCMO has been so different and so much more rewarding than when I raised money in Oklahoma City. I think it's because I do more than just raise some money. I carry a flag bearing a name of someone who lost the battle. So we don't forget. I am thankful for being able to do that and I am thankful for Terry who has provided me with that opportunity. 

This has been a good week with lots to be thankful for. I am thankful for warmer temperatures. I am thankful for the eggs from the chickens. I am thankful for really good moments on my yoga mat. I am thankful for the promise of a productive weekend. And as always, I am so thankful for you. Here's to a great weekend celebrating the Year of the Monkey and a truly Thankful Friday!

 

LOVE THURSDAY

Cindy Maddera

It's been kind of a heavy week around here. The injustices of the world and ignorance of others has me feeling as though I've had an anchor tied to my feet and I've been dropped into the nearest deep body of water. I worry for those girls taken a year ago. I worry for the countless other young women whose lives are in danger of the same fate as those girls. I worry about the implications of Hilary Clinton's announcement and next year's elections. I worry about the HIV epidemic that's happening in Indiana with 95 confirmed new cases in just this month alone. I worry about what's happening in Yemen. I worry about this peace deal with Iran. I worry about the water in the basement. I worry about the chickens quickly outgrowing their current box. I worry about bills and debt. I suppose I worry about the same things many people worry about on a daily basis. Basically, I worry.  

My whole life I have been a worrier. The death of bees, the baby seals, the rhino population are all things that keep me up at night. I worry about the great big stuff and I worry about the teeny tiny stuff. Most of the time, I have it all under control. I am concerned about the big things, the giant global issues, but they don't keep me up at night. I am concerned about the little things too, but I don't fret over them. This week though, for some reason, I have felt all of the things. Each one a stone stacked on top of one another and I'm balancing them on my head. This is when I become overwhelmed with my insignificance and lack of power to do anything. 

Then I remember the ant. The average size of an ant is less then the size of a normal paperclip, yet they can carry up to three times their weight. One tiny ant makes up a large community of ants and they all work together for the good of the colony. After I think about the ant, I think of the snow flake. One snow flake sits with millions of other snow flakes to cover the ground with a blanket of snow. Next, I think of the ocean. One drop of salt water. One blade of grass to make up a field. One cell to work with millions of cells to form a human body. The ant, the snow flake, the drop of water, the blade of grass, and the one cell, each of these things on their own are insignificant, but look what they can do when they are combined together. 

Finally, I am reminded of the seed. The seed needs the nutrients in soil, it needs water and the warmth of the sun, but once these requirements are met it only takes one tiny root hair to start the process of growing into something amazing. As of yesterday, I have raised $275 for the Kansas City AIDS Walk thanks to your generous donations. Some may say that this is a very small amount, but I would disagree. That $275 makes up the $114,208.58 that the Kansas City AIDS Walk Foundation has raised so far. So, you see, each one of us is an ant, a snow flake,a drop of water. Each one of us is a seed. 

Here's to growing into something amazing and here's to a worry free Love Thursday!

THANKFUL FRIDAY

Cindy Maddera

Thursday morning, I woke up not coughing. It was the first time in over a week where I didn't start my day coughing. I mean, I still have a cough, it's just not as relentlessly persistent. Waking up without it on Thursday made me want to fist pump the air or high five someone and then I walked at lunch and spent the afternoon coughing. But! There's always a but. Waking without the cough means that I didn't wake up a bazillion times during the night because of it. I didn't take cough medicine before bed either. I slept through the night unassisted. High five! I am thankful that I am finally on the up side of this crud mountain. 

I feel like today's Thankful Friday could easily fall into a laundry list of piddly ass things like short weeks and Kleenex. It is easy to be thankful for the quiet evenings we've had this week as well as the low expectations of getting things done. It's easy to be thankful for my food and the weather or the endless supply of cherry tomatoes that seem to be coming from the garden on a daily basis. They are small little things that can also be easily taken for granted. Maybe that's why it is important to occasionally recognize and be thankful for that laundry list. With daily lives full of work, family, school things, the hustle and bustle of living, the mundane of simple is a blessing. Often I feel the push to dig deeper, to find something more. I don't want my gratitude to be superficial, only being thankful for the things on the surface. Surely I am more blessed than just having a roof over my head, but then you consider those who do not have roofs overhead. I can always pull out a can of beans from the pantry when I'm hungry. To some people the ability to open up a closet door and pull out a can of food is a luxury. 

Weeks ago I was invited to join the 15 Can Challenge through Facebook. I sort of just ignored the invite. It sounded like a good challenge to do, but then I thought about the effort required to actually get the cans to a charity. I set the invite on the back burner to mule over for awhile. The challenge is simple. Every week, when you buy groceries, you buy an extra can of something to set aside for a food pantry charity of your choice. When I received the invite, it was fifteen weeks until December 5th, the day you turn everything in. Now we have more like thirteen weeks, but it's not a big deal to pick up two extra cans here and there to end up with the final total. But the initial reaction was to not bother. I've started the challenge late. I have to get the food to a pantry. Would you listen to those excuses?!? I am gross and lazy. I joined the event today. Taking a moment to be thankful for the simple things was the kick in the pants I needed. If you'd like to join me in this food drive, leave a comment or contact me on Facebook and I will send you an invite. 

A cold front is moving through right as I type this. We will have Fall temperatures this weekend. I am not ready to let go of Summer weather, but I will be thankful for a preview of Fall. Like Christmas in July. I am thankful for treadmill time and clean yoga mats. I am thankful for tofu scramble. And I am always thankful for you. Here's to a fantastic weekend and a truly Thankful Friday.