Hello March and the promise of renewal. The sense of something new is even further validated by the sunshine!
The first sign of sunshine makes me think of Friendships. I think of crisp white tshirts, messy hair, painted toes and cold beer and all shared with a friend.....On a patio, boat, sitting in the grass, an outdoor concert anywhere that giggling is welcome and required!
I've been very lucky in the friend department. I have many friends that I have had for 30+ years. I have gotten even luckier to become close with the "friends of friends"......
There is one special girl in particular that I have become friends with through one of my Besties, Abby. Her name is Jacque Warren and everyone loves her immediately. She IS beautiful, funny, sweet and very generous in her spirit. Every time I have been in Jacque's company, she always has a compliment to pay to several people. She is very selfless in her conversational stye and always makes it mostly about the person she is talking too. She will very enthusiastically want to know all about you.
I met her at the beginning of my art "career". It was when I was really trying to step out there and see if I could actually earn a living at it. I didn't know what that would look like or where it would lead but I was gonna take a stab at it! I had a successful career already so I was taking a big risk. Looking back, I didn't realize how brave (or dumb!) I was being!
I opened a studio space and to cover the expenses, I was going to do "painting parties". This was before the Sips and Strokes craze started. I planned a free party so that I could take some promotional photos for my website. I called Abby and asked her if she could round up a crew who would like to do it. That was when I met Jacque and it was an instant friendship!
|Jacque and another one of the Crew I so love Stephanie!|
|She was an absolute Natural!!|
|Abby Boggs- The glue that holds the world together!|
So...now that I have introduced Jacque here is the real reason that I am writing this blog post. Another awesome thing about Jacque is how much she loves her family. She can barely finish a sentence without mentioning her Husband or one of her children.
Recently her husband, Jay has been diagnosed with "Giobastoma Multiform". It is an aggressive form of brain cancer. He is young and healthy and the diagnosis has been devastating news. A tumor was removed immediately but because of how very aggressive it is, one twice the size grew back in it's place in a matter of weeks. That one was removed last week. He will be undergoing chemo and radiation in two weeks along with any clinical trials he qualifies for.
In usual Jacque Warren fashion, she has hit this fight head on with a positive attitude and a "let's whip this" spirit. How brave she is being is really quite touching to watch. The last time I spent time with the two of them was on my Wedding day in December and it was very special that they were there!
Of course, all of her friends (including me) are feeling desperate to help in any way we can. Jay is a self employed IT whiz and these numerous surgeries and upcoming treatments will affect his ability to work. All of the financial assistance they can get will at least help relieve some of the burden of worry while they can fully concentrate on this fight.
Abby and Stephanie are the master chefs.... My abilities lie with the paint brush. In the spirit of Jacques Bravery and to celebrate the way we became friends, I made something for her that I can sell to raise money for her. She has been a "Difference Maker" in my life and I hope to be a small one in hers.
I found these vintage subway tokens and bought 85 of them and I painted this arrowhead to represent being a warrior. So this necklace represents- "Life will bring you lots of journeys to take and you are Braver than you think. And always remember that there is always someone that will be in the foxhole with you ready to be "your muscle"."
Here is the link to purchase this for $20. It is a 1.75x1.45 lightweight pendant on a soft deerskin lace cord. About 20 inches. If it's not for you- then give it to someone who is facing a battle of their own. If you don't know someone like that right now- buy it and put it away for the occasion when you do. Pay it forward or save it for a Christmas gift- Be a Difference Maker. 100% of the money goes straight to Jacque and her family.