Wednesday, December 24, 2014

For You

 Since the beginning of Aviana's Elves, there's one person who is always first in line with both encouragement and a large donation. No matter what I choose for the year, my aunt Paula is 100% behind our efforts. Hospitals! "That's great!" Homeless! "Sounds wonderful!" Hospice! "Awww, that's perfect."

  This year was no exception, but what was... just as we were finishing up for the year, she unexpectedly passed away. How could this be? We were just texting. We were just at her house the day before with birthday and Christmas presents. 

Life changes. It shifts. Those we love come... and they go. 

So this past week was spent with family - while yesterday and the day before...
we laid her to rest. 

The purpose of Aviana's Elves is to bring those who may be going through a difficult time, a sliver of light. If only for a moment, to let them know someone is thinking of them. 

I know what this time of year felt like in the realm of our own, but now, as I watch through the eyes of my aunt's immediate family, Aviana's Elves holds new and different meaning.

If you happen to be the praying type, my wish this holiday is for some to be floated up for my aunt's family. Especially my Uncle Bob. He not only lost his sweet love of 50 years, but yesterday morning, the morning of my aunt's interment, he also lost his very favorite out of their five dogs. This is all just too much at one time.

Thank you.

This year, we dedicate Aviana's Elves to my Aunt Paula - one of the kindest, most loving, people I will ever know.




Paula Beth Lyon




Paula and Aviana on her first birthday
One month after we picked Avi up in Guatemala.








The morning of the deliveries.




Dave double checking my math - probably a good idea ; )




We loaded all the extended care packages in Dave's car, and all the remaining hospice in mine. I had already delivered 10 prior.








All ready.




"Elf Rainey, are you ready too?"

***

On the way, we stopped at Whole Treats and picked up muffins, cookies, brownies and donuts for both the hospice and extended care staff. 












We are always thankful when they have a cart. We wheeled at least three to this department.

We then went over to the hospice department, but I forgot to bring my camera. Val, the hospice volunteer coordinator, and her husband Joe, greeted us. She's one of the nicest people I've ever met. That day was to be her very last, as she was retiring. I was happy to have worked with her, if only for a short time. She started me on the volunteer path, and graciously connected me with others within the department. 

Our plan was for my mom to bring the scones donated by Panera up to Tahoe Forest, but there was a storm coming, so we had a slight change of plan. I think it was perfect though because it was nice to share the love around to where we began.

My friend Sara and her cutie kids delivered them to the Kaiser Roseville PICU. This is where Aviana was transferred after being released from U.C. Davis Trauma 1. The staff was wonderful to us. They were actually part of our very first Aviana's Elves too!




Everyone was especially grateful for the care packages and all of our additional efforts. With each interaction this year - my heart grew. Together we created something magical.

Thank you. 
❤️
Thank you. 
❤️
Thank you.
❤️

18 comments:

  1. Jen, if there is one thing you know about it is loss. Your aunt Paula sounds amazing. I know you will miss her so much. I am sad for all who love her. I am the praying type and will be praying for your Uncle Bob. I'm so sad about his dog as well. Hard times! I know your family will wrap him in love. I hope that you and yours will have a Christmas filled with hope, peace and love. I are forever in my heart.

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    1. Thank you Donna! Yes, she was one amazing woman : )

      Christmas was really nice - filled with hope, peace and love. I hope yours was too.

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  2. Always amazed at the phenomenal job you guys do of giving back to all the love you received. You guys are awesome!

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  3. Thank you so much ! : ) I hope you had a nice holiday and have a Happy New Year ❤️

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  4. So sorry to read about Aunt Paula sounds like such a loving caring giving person. Know your family is shocked. So glad Aviana's elf (project) went so well once again! Know it has to be a great feeling to give to others! Hope you & your family had a nice holiday & have a Happy New Year!

    Denise-Georgia

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  5. Thank you for sharing the pictures of your aunt. She is a beautiful person, both in the pictures and your description. That was a touching eulogy you gave. I'm so happy for ya'll being able to have that walk together in Tahoe in October. Your Uncle Bob and his children will be in our family prayers tonight. The gift bags look great. I like how you did the stamping, it really gave it a personal touch. I can't believe you had 3+ carts full, that's awesome! I know a lot of love and time and thought went into them. Good job elves! Now get some rest and have a Happy 2015!!! P.S. Thanks for a Rainey pic!

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    1. Thank you Channe. She sure was. I/we miss her every day. You are the sweetest. I was just writing to my cousin about how you amaze and inspire me.

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  6. Oh Jen.....how is it that life continues to throw these curve balls? I never stop praying each night for any and all families who might need extra prayers, love and support. I was just talking about Aviana in Heaven to my husband this weekend, I am comforted knowing she has Aunt Paula with her now and Kama has a new playmate as well. You are never not in my thoughts and prayers. Big hugs to you all.

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    1. Thank you Erin. Thank you so much. I just received your card today. You made my day. I am so happy to know you and I too feel we were brought together for a reason. I wish I could see you more. Give you a hug!

      You were a blessing to me at one of the most difficult times and I will never forget.

      Love you!!

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  7. I am so so sorry. what another terrible loss.......
    YOu are wonderful for all that you are continueing to do.

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    1. Thank you so much! I appreciate your love...always!

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  8. Big prayers to your family my friend.
    love Jess

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    1. Thank you Jess!

      I miss and love you, but you know ; ) Right!!

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  9. Love and light to all of you. Jen - can you please send me your new address? My email is the same, and we're at the Antelope address. <3

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    1. Thank you Jillian! I hope you got my email. Love you, all of you!

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