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Thursday, February 28, 2019

A Country Wedding...

The gloomy days of February just got a little brighter...

This weekend past, family and friends were welcomed to celebrate 
Love's vows, sweet and true.

Our beautiful niece found her Prince Charming!

The wedding was a time for smiles and joy... 
and a selfie with a sweet grandgirl!

And perhaps, best of all, Poppy was able to make it!

Dad's health has been precarious these last few months,
but, oh, so precious to have him here for this celebration of Love...
we don't take one minute for granted!

grateful to escape the "Deep Freeze" for a day or two!

And there was cake!
Does it get any better??

We love you Amanda and Joey!

May God send Blessings in Abundance on you both as you
begin your journey together...

Hope and Grace abound in New Beginnings!
Rejoicing with Love today,


Friday, February 22, 2019

The Compassionate Act for Pancreatic Cancer

Getting a pancreatic cancer diagnosis is bad.  Most people are slammed with shock and disbelief.  And then horrified by the doctor's prognosis...

"3 to 6 months..."

"Your cancer is inoperable..."

"There is no cure..."

"Treatment may prolong your life... might give you an extra few months..."

"Go Home... Get your affairs in order..."

We have been there.  We have had this very conversation.  It is the stuff of nightmares.  There is no room for Hope in this dialogue.

No Hope.

And yet, if there's one thing we've learned since pancreatic cancer touched our lives, it's that Hope can find a way in to even the darkest of places.

As mom walked the hard road of her pancreatic cancer journey, she chose constantly to trust in a Hope springing up from a deep faith... not an easy faith... but that faith, it was one of our first grace gifts in the nightmare journey.

All along the way, that Hope... it kept the dark at bay... it was a light for the next step.

Today, there's another bit of Hope.  It's called The Compassionate Act for Pancreatic Cancer.

It is help for the financial hardship of a pancreatic cancer diagnosis.  The high cost of cancer treatment is not something we talk about often, but it is a burden that compounds an already emotional battle.

The Social Security Administration has determined that a person who has been diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer will automatically qualify for Social Security disability benefits, as the SSA has determined that Pancreatic Cancer is one of the illnesses that meet disability standards.

The result is that your disability case can be expedited, which means that the approval process can be completed in weeks, not years.  If all of the correct documents are present and in order, you can expect your case to be completed in less than a month.

Funds from a Social Security disability benefit can be used for many things... from sorting through a multitude of possible treatment options, arranging for child care, addressing transportation issues, as well as the usual day-to-day responsibilities of life.

When a pancreatic cancer diagnosis leaves your world in tatters and everything begins to feel overwhelming, it might be comforting to know that Social Security disability insurance (SSDI) benefits may be able to provide a bit of relief.

The first thing you need to do to qualify for SSDI is to make your intent to file known.  Even if you are not positive that you are going to file a Social Security Disability claim, you should go to your SSA office and state your intent to file.  Doing so establishes a protected filing date.  In the event that you are eventually approved for SSDI benefits, your back pay will generally be calculated based on your initial filing date.

The Compassionate Act for Pancreatic Cancer... the name speaks to the urgency of a pancreatic cancer diagnosis... we need early detection, we need better treatment options, we need a cure... and yes, we need Compassion.

This cancer. It. is. brutal.  Anything that can offer Hope and ease the burden is a gift.

Praying for Grace to light the way,
My Love, Always,

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Smiles for this Valentine's Day!

Love comes in all shapes and sizes... and sometimes in the most unlikely of places!

May Love surprise you at every turn today!

And if  this day is filled with more worry than happy,
consider yourself hugged and loved...
Praying the Blessings of Hope and Peace over you tonight!

In Grace, Always,

Monday, February 11, 2019

Did you know?

Hello!  Did you know that this week is Random Acts of Kindness Week?

I didn't even know that was a thing!  Lol!  However, it makes me smile and I am totally on board!

All this week, Febraury 9-15th, 2019, people everywhere are celebrating ways to step out of their comfort zone and perform a random act of kindness.

According to the internet ;-) a random act of kindness is a selfless act performed by kind people to either help or cheer up a random stranger, for no reason other than to make people happier.

The Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center has shone a spotlight on one couple who are giving back in the kindest of ways:

Bonnie and her husband have found an incredibly sweet way to honor her mother's Legacy of Kindness... This is her story, shared on Roswell's Cancer Talk Blog:

Turning tragedy into kindness is no small feat, but one woman does just that every year at Roswell Park and throughout her community.

Bonnie Hoag's mother was a patient at Roswell before passing away on September 9, 2015.  "Everyone says this when someone dies, but my mom truly was a thoughful, generous, amazing person," Hoag says.  "She did kind things for people she didn't know and for people she did know.  Her birthday was coming up and I was dreading it, so I thought, What if we made it a day of happiness?"

So it was decided that on June 12, 2016, Hoag and her husband, would do 59 random acts of kindness, marking the fact that her mother would have been 59 on her birthday that year.  Every year since, the tradition has gotten bigger and bigger.  "We did 61 acts of kindness last year and over 80 this year," Hoag says.  "We do them all over - at nursing homes, fire departments.  We do anything we can think of, like paying for people's lunches.  Other people have gotten involved.  I have a good support system in the community.  My mom was so loved by so many."

At Roswell, Hoag has left bottles of water, baskets of snacks, and blankets in different locations for people to enjoy.  "It can be cold in the hospital," she explains.  "We stop and talk to families in the Intensive Car Unit, and it's easy to form bonds with people there.  We leave envelopes with meal vouchers for the staff at the front desk to give to people."  The Hoags have also left money at the parking garage to surprise patients and visitors with free parking on their way out.

"I think everyone can relate to it," Hoag says.  "Most people have been touched by cancer in their life, unfortunately.  My mom fought and didn't win, but if there was any place she had a chance to win, it was at Roswell."

As far as setting out and doing the random acts of kindness, Hoag said it's something anyone and everyone can do.  "Everyone has a helpful heart, but people don't always think to actually do those types of things.  It makes you feel good when you're doing it, and people aren't used to having something kind done for them.  The world needs more of that."

Yes!  Oh, how the world needs more of that!  I believe we have been challenged!!  

Our turn to share kindness with the people in our own corner of the world.  May we find that performing a selfless act of kindness, not only brings happiness to those around us, but cheers our own hearts as well!

The world desperately needs more of that!!  

Grace and Love tonight,