The loss of a home and the love of good friends.

9 May

Our dear family friend, James, and his wife, Julia, lost their house to a fire last Friday night. (It was, of all things, a freak accident with nail polish remover. Please be careful, ladies!) Thankfully, no one was hurt, save their pet beta fish. Also thankfully, they have homeowner’s insurance, which will help them recover the posessions they lost and either fix the home (there was no structural damage,) or find a new one, depending on the extent of the interior damage.

I’ve known James literally all of my life. He gave my mom away at my parents’ wedding, and he’s quite a character. He inspired me as a kid with his involvement in theater, and inspires me now with his involvement in local music. When I spoke to him on the phone the other day, he was joking about how they still had the pool, and his response to people who offered to donate items has been “Well, we could put it on the back porch …” Like he said, it’s not the first time he’s had the blues, and he’s just so overwhelmed by the kindness they’ve received that he’s crying happy tears. He has always been a great friend to us, and now we’re honored to return the favor.

James’s family set up a benefit and a donation account to help cover any extra expenses that insurance won’t, and to be sure they have the money they need to replace the necessities they lost as soon as they have a place to put them. I’ve been contacting everyone I can think of to donate items for the silent auction and raffle for the benefit, and I’m so excited by peoples’ generosity! So far, just out of the people I’ve contacted in the past couple of days, a photographer friend has donated a couple’s portrait session, my sister in law has donated a piece of her nature photography along with a handmade custom wooden frame, and another friend I met through James is donating brand new kitchen items and appliances along with some other miscellaneous items. Mom is modifying a Stetson hat with beautiful feathers, and I’m going to make a set of matching jewelry to donate. I’m hoping to hear back from some of my Etsy friends so that I can assemble a handmade gifts basket, and I’m contacting people in an attempt to collect event tickets and gift cards to put together a “Year of Fun” package.

I even created an icon and an invitation flyer for Facebook and for the event host to print. (she conveniently works for a printing company.)

We only have a couple of weeks until the benefit, but everyone is working together, and everything is just falling into place. It’s been really uplifting to witness all of the love friends and family and pouring out to this couple. It also feels really good to give. They deserve every bit of it.

If anyone has suggestions about how to obtain donations for the silent auction and raffle, please let me know! Also, if you would like to make a donation, you can check out the Facebook event page for more info.

Gentle hugs,

Chels

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