September 20, 2016: On Monday, August 15th in the wee hours of the morning, my father entered eternal rest with Jesus Christ. The words which are written below highlight my ideas for a non-profit organization that while he fought courageously for his life after open heart surgery. I wrote just one week before he passed away (August 9, 2016), and now the desire to begin this project is even deeper!
There are things that I love very dearly: my dad, books, and art. I'm currently in the process of establishing a non-profit for a special project that merges the three of them together. This idea came to me after a trip to the Amon Carter Museum of Art. They hosted a fabulous story time every Wednesday during the months of June and July. Each week, the stories featured letters of the alphabet, and children also created an art project that was connected to the literature! While we didn't go to Paris this summer, my children were exposed to some beautiful pieces of art!
We love this museum so much that we attended every single week. I love the fact that my children were able to practice their listening skills, develop creativity, and get out of the house (while remaining in the AC)! Most importantly I love the fact that they were being exposed to the museum etiquette and expectations in a very meaningful and safe space. If you're in the DFW area I highly recommend it.
One of the major events that has impacted my summer in a powerful way is my dad having open heart surgery. This man has a heart of gold. He never meets a stranger. He is a man of great thought. He is also an extremely patient, giving, and hard working individual. Because of his hospital stay and the trips that we took to check in on him, I began to think about all of the individuals (and their family members) who are faced with unexpected hospital visits or an extended stay that requires them to be away from the comfort of their home much longer than they'd like. My heart began to truly soften for heart patients especially (for obvious reasons).
The idea came to me as "Kid at Heart." My dad has the heart of a kid. He's jolly and fun to be around. This project involves a group of individuals (any age, background, club, organization, etc.) who gather with books (mainly children's books because they're bright, colorful, and cheery). Each of the individuals would create a simple art project using paper, markers, stickers, pipe cleaners, googly eyes, glue dots, and all sorts of craft supplies. After their project was complete, they'd place it in a simple bag along with the book and some of the same types of supplies that were used for their creation. As a group they would make a trip to the hospital to visit patients, read the books, share their creations, and help the other individuals create their own masterpiece.
Right now this idea is definitely in the infancy stages, and I'm thinking about grants, funding, and other potential resources that are available. I look forward to updating you on the process. I'm joining a MOPS group this fall, and I'm hoping that this will be one of the community service activities that we complete. For now. . .those are my ideas, and I'm really hoping I can really brighten the faces of few individuals add lots of joy to someone's heart with this endeavor!