what a crazy couple of days and i mean CRAZY! let's go back to wednesday when we finally got our power and phone back - thank goodness as we had much coordinating to do for our friends' benefit dance on saturday night.
kids - this story that am i about to tell you - you will never believe! let me start back at the beginning - our friend R was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer about a month ago. our 2 small communities just came together like mad. we all scrambled and we all came up with ideas and we all ran around to ensure that we could take at least the financial burden off of our friend R and his wife D during this difficult time. and we sponsored a benefit dance for them this past saturday night.
anyway, amongst the core group of us, having contacted various businesses and individuals, and because of the amount of prizes that we were able to obtain, we decided to sell tickets on 3 separate gift baskets. the certificates that i am showing below are cropped because all of the titles of the certificates had our friends' name on them. but this certificate shows all of the gifts listed in Goodie Basket #1, worth over $800 (make sure to enlarge so that you can read all of the items in the basket):
this next certificate is Goodie Basket #2, valued at over $300:
Goodie Basket #3 was donated by Tim Horton's and was beautifully wrapped by Tim's - it contained coffees, teas, cups, xmas ornaments and a bunch of other stuff. there's a real reason why whenever we send Canadian Forces troops anywhere, the first thing they scream for is to have a Tim Horton's set up. Tim Horton's is a big supporter of our troops, and they also aren't shy when it comes to asking for a donation. the Goodie Basket that they gave us was worth over $100:
this was a list of our silent auction items and we raised quite a bit of money from these items:
lastly, here's a list of our awesome door prizes which everyone enjoyed:
oh - wouldn't i love to tell you all that it went off without even the least of a hitch. but no - that would be a lie. first off, on thursday, a few of us got together and wrapped up all the goodie baskets in garbage bags and decorated them and made them look fancy. then on friday, jambaloney and i spent about 4 and a half hours making all of the dough for the pizzas that we were selling at the benefit dance. on saturday morning our core crew got together and in an assembly line fashion, whipped off 7 big, giant combination pizzas, 2 cheese pizzas and 3 cheese and pepperoni pizzas, that we put in the fridges with the intention of starting to cook them at 6 as the dance started at 7. all of the ingredients were donated by our core crew so whatever money we made off the pizzas was pure profit and going straight to our friend R and his wife D. in addition, our brother G and sister C donated a bunch of ingredients for the pizzas, as well as a bunch of the items found in the Goodie Baskets, Silent Auction items and door prizes. our other friends S and H held a ham and salad supper in another close community and donated all proceeds to R!
the day couldn't have gone any better! we set up the hall and made it fancy with blue and white table cloths, our dj who agreed to play for free got all of his equipment set up and we all went home to relax a little before getting ready for the dance.
and then everything that could go wrong - DID GO WRONG! but hey, we are cape bretoners and we can handle whatever you throw our way. at 5pm we lost our power. my sister E ran down to the hall to see if the power was still on and it was. me and jam called in the power outage and were told it was only affecting our small area and that the power would be back by 8pm. so our core crew met up at the hall and made the decision to not cancel the benefit dance. we decided to get our VFD generator which was in our sister community of Fourchu and hook it up to at least have lights and be able to serve hamburgers and hotdogs. our Fourchu brothers B and D brought the generator to the hall. then my sister E and i took all of the pizzas to our sister community of Fourchu and they let us use their hall's ovens to cook the pizzas. our other sister C (we're all sisters and brothers here) drove down to Fourchu after 20 mins and picked up the first 4 pizzas and took them back to our hall. even though the power was out in our area, we still filled the hall and people were very gracious, waiting for the pizzas, understanding that we were without power and running off the generator and generally having a good time filling up on hamburgers and hotdogs.
as our friend R normally works the bar with our brother D, jambaloney filled in and did an awesome job as he waitered and bartended for years. our sister C worked the door collecting donations and giving out door prize tickets and our brother G took in dance tickets. everyone worked together and we somehow managed to pull this event off without a hitch!
when we got the rest of the pizzas finished, me and my sister E raced back to our hall with the pizzas and they went like wild fire. and everyone enjoyed them and were very gracious about the wait. then we held our silent auction and made over $400!!!! then we gave out our door prizes and everyone enjoyed themselves with so many door prizes to be won! then - woohoo - the power came back on and we were able to start the dance. we all had such a good time! we had a group of friends from another neighbouring community who grew up with our friend R and he was really glad to see them. he danced all night long - as did we all. an awesome time was had by everyone. lastly, our friend H made up some Newfoundland "Ugly Sticks" which
were demonstrated at the dance - and people loved it and bid on them!!!
you can learn more about Ugly Sticks here and the proceeds from that auction also went to our friend R.
after E, S and i counted up the money from tickets and donations - we had over $3,000!!! but we also had a bunch of cards that people dropped off in the donation box, which we didn't open but found out later that it all totaled $4,600!!! can you believe that a few small communities and caring people can raise that much money in such a short time in order to help out a beloved member of the community and his wife??? i find it amazing!
we still have 2 more weeks of selling raffle tickets on the baskets, and will be drawing the winners on April 19th at a special bingo game in Fourchu. i am positive that we can bring the total up to $5,000 if not more.
i have to say that for the past week i have felt such anxiety and worry that the pizzas would go over like a brick because they were mine and jambaloney's idea. and people were surprised to find out that they were home-made from scratch. and so many people said they enjoyed them. i was sick with worry because we had to drive them to Fourchu, cook them and then drive them back. they would have been so much better if they were fresh-made at our hall, but people were very gracious in saying that they were delicious. i just wanted to serve something a little special and have people enjoy them, you know?
considering all of the things that went wrong and could have thrown everything askew - somehow we pulled it off. mostly because we are such small communities and we look adversity in the face and then give it a punch so that it has a black eye like mine that night!
here is a pic of our friend R, my 2 sisters and me with my shiner.
i have their permission to put up this pic and as more pics of the night come in, i will put up some more. from left to right is my sister E, my brother R, my sister S and me - ya - the one with the shiner.
me and jam can't believe this wonderful community have accepted us right from the beginning with such open arms. i can't believe the awesome time that was had by all - and oh - there are some stories from that night which will become legend - bahahahahah! we had such a great time. and to my friend d - it was so nice to see you and A there and we hope to see you at many more events. thank you both for all of your kind words about the event, the pizza and the blogs.
kids - all i can say is that we pulled it off and our friends have at least some financial worries off their shoulders. our brother and sister D and E have been taking time off work to get R in for his first treatments and everything looks like it is going well. all i ask now is for your prayers, because we all know that prayers work. and we all believe in miracles. and our brother R is strong and i am sure that he can beat at least some of the odds.
oh and the fact that he stepped on my feet through the 2 last waltzes of the night, we'll just keep amongst ourselves. yep, i got a shiner, a bruised up shoulder, several even more bruised up ribs from all of the hugs on saturday night - and now - both of my feet are bruised and crushed from waltzing with R!!! i won't even mention that my bestie C didn't care that i was bruised up - she yelled at me to dance with her like she always does and i did!
oh kids - what a crazy, awesome, crazy night. what a crazy, awesome, crazy community. i can't think of anywhere else i would rather be.
give me a day or 2 to hit up all of your blogs....it's been a crazy week. a crazy month. and now i have to start planting. it's 4am - and i am still reeling from all that has gone on this past week. i promise to hit you all up in a day or two. thanks for understanding.
gosh do i ever feel good about being a part of this fundraiser...and being a part of this wonderfully crazy community!