Welcome to Stephanie’s House ~ a beautiful, loving LIFE home for women with autism in Chester Springs, PA
The house is prepped and ready for painting by Team Sherwin-Williams on MONDAY, May 5th!!!
So many updates! Our picture loader was not working for awhile, so we were unable to update the new look!! The exterior of the house is completely finished!
Our talented volunteer design team of Markcharles Misilli and Sharon Hanby-Robie, both friends and on-air guests at QVC, have been busy working out all of our last minute details!
The exterior is complete, including the front door with its beautiful color of red! The snow is melting off the roof (finally) and we are seeing that it matches as perfectly as we expected it would. NO new roof for awhile!
We are now moving inside with our first volunteer, Brian Caldwell, who is graciously completing those menial tasks that nobody wants – spackling, sanding, wood putty, caulking and ripping up carpet from 1500 square feet! Last night our volunteer design team, Markcharles Misilli and Sharon Hanby-Robie, both friends from QVC broadcast, got their first tour and we have a plan in motion! The house is over 30 years old and many upgrades were already completed including a full kitchen with all of the amenities, new thermal windows and doors, new heating and air conditioning and a new tub and wall in the middle bath. We have great BONES!
So where do we begin and can we have the house ready by summer – we are looking at that as the goal now.
Paint colors have been chosen. We are going for neutrals in creams, browns and green throughout. White trims. Bamboo flooring thru the entire house. Simple window treatments. Clean and fresh. A couple of wall areas Play Blackjack , Slots, Video Poker and European Roulette. and linen closets removed to make way for a master shower and double vanity in girls” bathroom. New granite top for powder room and painting of paneled areas. The good news is that with the generous help of these two talented friends, we are going to be able to come in way under budget! We are hoping Home Depot will help us with some of our wish list.
This mom”s dream is taking place before my eyes and I could not be more grateful! A year from now it is my hope that three women will call Stephanie”s House home and we are up and running and working out the kinks and helping other families do the same. It is NOT an easy process by any means.
Stay tuned …
Marie and Andy
What began as one mom”s dream almost 5 years ago is now a reality and then some! Renovations on our official “Stephanie”s House” got underway this past week with Phase I – the exterior. We are blessed to have hired a wonderful Amish team, E & E Siding, LLC. After careful consideration and board approval, $20,000 was budgeted to cover removal of existing wood, gutters, all caps and rotted pieces to be replaced by vinyl siding. We chose a medium gray color to be complemented with black shutters and white trim, a red All roulette payouts are based on their likelihood of occurring; hence individual number bets are the highest paying bets. door and a garage door with a bit of character! New lighting will go up on front and back porches, as well. This project, weather permitting, is expected to be completed by the end of next week.
Phase 2 will be the upstairs starting with the master suite. We plan to redesign the entire master bath making it larger and replacing a shower insert with a huge walk in shower. A sitting area will be walled off from the main bedroom area to include a large soaking tub and vanity. It is our goal at some point to have a house parent full time who will live with our three ladies and be on hand to cover night issues. We want the master suite to be a place of serenity and feel like home for our lucky candidate.
Stay tuned for updates!
Andy and Marie
We are pleased to announce our partnership with Sherwin-Williams! This company has volunteered the time and talents of a team of 40 managers from across the country to paint the entire interior of our house – top to bottom- bedrooms, bathrooms, living rooms and hallways to fireplace, corners and crown moldings. May 5th!! In addition to FREE labor from the professionals, Sherwin-Williams is also donating all of the primers, paint, supplies and a catering team to feed the painters. We are so grateful to Corey Crapella and Jack Newnam from Sherwin-Williams and to our dear friend, Krissy Flynn and online casino australia her dad for presenting us. This is an unbelievable gift and one that will certainly add the perfect finishing touches to our beautiful home!
Color schemes have been chosen. Our primary colors for downstairs living areas are Banana Cream on top and Ryegrass (green) on bottom. Dining room color will be Sockeye with trims of white. Kitchen will be Banana Cream. These colors will extend up stairway and into hallway.
Master bedroom is being painted IVORY and white. Master bath will be all white with everything new including a new white vanity with white marble and gray top, new water efficient toilet and a HUGE walk in shower complete with corner seat and rain glass!!
Stephanie”s room will be Pink, blue and yellow and the other two rooms will be ivory and white for now. Middle bath is getting gutted and redone with a double white vanity and green walls to match a gorgeous turquoise and green paisley shower curtain.
All painting will be completed in one day! We are so excited.
We thank Soroptomist International of Phoenixville for the generous donation of all of the beach white furniture for Stephanie”s room. We thank La-Z-Boy Furniture for their donation of two brand new swivel rockers for our living areas.
We thank everyone who came out on Saturday, October 26, 2013 to support our 5th Annual Autism Shops event. We raised another $20,000!
Here is out story in a nutshell from Philadelphia!
Family plans for autistic daughter”s adult life
Posted: Friday, October 25, 2013, 2:01 AM
The house also is to be a meeting place for parents looking for help. Ludwig said Stephanie”s House had already amassed more than $230,000 through fund-raising and had a goal of $350,000.
On Saturday, Stephanie”s House will sell hundreds of donated handbags, pieces of jewelry, home goods, and other items at its fifth annual “Autism Shops” fund-raiser at the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge in Phoenixville from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Profits will help pay for the estimated $75,000 in renovations to the house, including installing a fence and alarm system so the women can”t wander off.
“Children with autism grow up to be adults with autism,” said Ludwig, who is 52 and also has two sons. “And I”ll tell you, it happens in the blink of an eye.”
As Stephanie grew up, her family saw that they wanted something different for her than group homes or other available options. By providing Stephanie with her own house, Ludwig said, she doesn”t have to worry about the quality of care Stephanie will receive.
The concept for Stephanie”s House came from another nonprofit, Katie”s House, started in 2001 by a parent in North Like with any mobile casino game, your odds of winning in roulette improve greatly as the house edge decreases. Jersey. Evelyn Dudziec has helped mentor the Ludwigs.
“I encourage all parents, if it”s possible to do something like this, to do it,” said Dudziec, who estimates hundreds of people across the country have asked her for advice on starting their own nonprofits since her daughter moved into her own house in 2007.
Dudziec”s 28-year-old daughter, Katie, lives in a house with a few other women in Newton, N.J. Dudziec has a second house, also in Newton, for male residents.
Likewise, Ludwig said dozens of people across the country had asked her for advice on how to help their children.
Life-sharing, in which an autistic person lives with a family willing to take him or her in, is one option available to parents no longer able to care for their children. Ludwig decided against it.
“For most folks, a 150-pound, 5-foot-10 person who is really 2 or 3 years old, a lot of people are not prepared for it,” Andy Ludwig, Stephanie”s stepfather, said.
One in 88 children in the United States has some form of autism, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In the next 10 years, about 500,000 U.S. children with autism will become adults, the advocacy group Autism Speaks said.
“We”re not very well-prepared for this influx of individuals with autism who will need housing as well as residential support to allow them to live as independently as possible,” said Lisa Goring, vice president of family services at Autism Speaks.
Waiting lists for housing are long and money is limited, so parents are taking things into their own hands to fill this tremendous need, Goring said.
Autism Speaks and other advocacy agencies offer services to help with the transition from school to adulthood.
Jennifer Brown, who works with New Jersey”s nonprofit Neighbours Inc., has been following Stephanie”s story on Facebook. Brown helps people over 21 with autism live the best lives they can.
“Very often, people with disabilities get told what they”re going to do with their lives,” she said. She didn”t want that for her 16-year-old son, Kyle, who will move into his own home soon.
Her goal is for Kyle, who loves being outside, to eventually earn a living through the farm she and her husband own in Tewksbury, N.J.
For Ludwig, Stephanie”s future is bright. Although Stephanie needs constant supervision and can”t bathe herself or cut her own food, she can read and write and loves to swim.
She knows what she likes: macaroni and cheese, honey crisp apples, baked potatoes, and all things Disney. Ludwig said she looked forward to seeing Stephanie be as independent as she can in her new house.
“I know if I was 21,” Ludwig said, “I wouldn”t want to be living with my mother.”
WE are PROUD to announce that we BOUGHT THE HOUSE TODAY!! Thursday, October 10, 2013. We have our first Stephanie”s House in Chester Springs, PA. Four years and a lot of shopping and donations in the making! Please join us in a celebration!
In 4 years, we raised over $260,000 and the bank said YES!!! This house is a 4 bedroom. 2.5 bath colonial that sits on the end of a cul de sac in Chester Springs, PA, a wonderful little village!
As expected, much of the money we raised is being used to buy the house and leave us with a smaller mortgage. For this reason, we do not have much money left for renovations and it needs a lot of work to prepare for our ladies to move in. Thankfully, the house has newer windows, except for basement, a newer roof and a newer heating and ac system. It needs to be aluminum sided and fitted with a new garage door as a top priority. The paint is peeling.
One of our biggest challenges will be an alarm system. As you can imagine, there needs to be a way to alert caregivers, especially overnights, to girls coming in and out of doors and windows (yes, windows), fire, carbon monoxide. The back of the huge online casinos back yard needs to be fenced in. The sides are already done. The back is all woods.
There are four bedrooms, one is a master with a master bath. All four rooms need work. When Steph was little she kicked in a few walls and broke doors, windows. All three bathrooms need to be gutted and rebuilt.
The kitchen is GORGEOUS. It looks like something straight out of a beach house. Just needs holes in ceiling fixed from plumbing leaks. Our dream is to use the soft and serene themes of nature and beach throughout the house with a bit of Disney Magic kicked in. We were given several Disney store large statues that we tend to use in the rec room area!
Living room, dining room and back fireplace room all need painting and flooring. The carpets in the house now have served as a pee zone for two small dogs that have not been let out enough. This all needs to be ripped out and replaced. I would like some kind of laminate flooring throughout so we no longer have to worry about spills from the girls. Hallways and stairs and four bedrooms need one color of carpet throughout.
We have a beautiful dining room set and cabinet. We need chairs for the Broyhill table. Our chairs were taken.
We need EVERYTHING ELSE – from bedroom sets to bath towels. We are starting with nothing. A shell.
Basement needs to be finished as a computer area/recreation room for girls and visitors.
We need the back deck to be extended so we can hold at least 30 people, maybe a nice patio area.
This house belongs to EVERYONE … the world. It will be a house filled with joy and passion. A place to gather and socialize. A place where parents of autistic adults can come and see HOW we put this together and how we might help them do the same.
We need donations of supplies, money and manpower.
All of this is tax deductible. So much to do. And more fund raising to come.
In a nutshell, we are also looking for contractors to help us modify this house for our girls. We need all of the following:
1. aluminum siding
2. hardwood floors thru downstairs and carpet for upstairs
3. Plumbing fixes for several areas including bathrooms that need to be completely renovated
4. electrical work
5. Three bedroom sets
6. living room furniture
7. alarm system
8. paint throughout
9. fencing for backyard
… and so much more.
Let”s get ready!!!!
HUGE THANKS to the angel family foundation who recently donated $60,000 to us!! We are over the moon and sliding down rainbows right now! They asked for anonymity and we respect that … I will just say this family understands and appreciates gratitude and giving so very well. This goes beyond just a check – by the way – original pledge was $50,000 but an extra $10,000 was tossed in for good measure and maybe some help with renovations!
It is times like these when I KNOW I am exactly where I am supposed to be. All is well.
In four years, this mother warrior, who refused to give up despite being hackled within my own circle to STOP and let the state take over her care for good – I kept on going. I refused to give up. I will keep raising funds, giving back and reaching out until beyond my death. This is more than just one house. This will be many houses. A legacy.
What have you done for your children today?
We are SO excited to be a featured in this month”s Main Line Parent Magazine here in the Philadelphia area. We thank Melissa Greiner and Sarah Bond for reaching out to us for a sneak peek into life with Stephanie.
Here is the link for a full page.
“Autism” – hearing that 6 letter word – a diagnosis for our daughter, Stephanie, 19 years ago, was nothing less than a dagger in my heart. We did not understand its complexity. Or how severely it had affected her. Back then there was no GOOGLE to click for research. How were we to know that she would never speak a sentence. Be able to tell you her name. Bathe herself. Fix herself a meal, have a date, go to college, get married or ever be left alone for more than a second. She was merely an adorable 2-year-old who suddenly lost her ability to speak, look at us or parallel play. Autism?
The grief was overwhelming, especially given that her older brother, Ryan, was battling serious congenital heart and bowel defects and was a regular patient at CHOP. We were young parents with no family to help us. Transplants from Ohio, trying to care for a chronically ill son, pay for his astronomical medical bills, going it pretty much alone and now we were adding a severely autistic daughter to the mix. There were no books to read. No step by steps on how to handle her. No caveats about “what to expect when you got what you were NOT expecting.” We set out simply enough to give life, the second time around, to a child with a perfect heart and ended up being blessed with a forever child who teaches our hearts everyday just how perfect life can be.
Two decades later, as Stephanie prepares to graduate from 14 years as a resident at the Devereux Kanner Center in West Chester, I am relishing in the blessings of autism. I now know that our daughter was chosen for a higher purpose. Getting to this place, however, has not been easy. I had to get over myself and the hardest thing for me was letting go of the guilt. What did I do wrong while I was pregnant? I was a health fanatic. It was one thing to have my first child arrive with about 50 health issues that would require three open heart surgeries and more and another to have the next one diagnosed with severe autism. I had to forgive myself and to this day, honestly, I am not sure that I have.
And we have since learned that the diagnosis comes with more than just a 6 letter word. Your world will never be the same. EVER. It will be a succession of high highs and low lows. Days when you are scraping poop off the bedroom walls and crying until you are dry and other days when you begin to notice that in that poop art there may be some artistic ability and Betfair Casino http://s4gambling.com/se/ Limited, Triq il-Kappillan Mifsud, St. you laugh. Outloud. Days when the rejection from everyone in the neighborhood being invited to a birthday party but your kids makes you more depressed than you ever dreamed possible to days when out the blue you hear your 15-year-old say “mommy” as clear as a bell for the first time and the happiness is so bright you squint through your tears.
You will find joy in what your child CAN do, learn to pick your battles, of which there will be many, and be gloriously relieved of the typical worries of your child having a boyfriend, driving a car, getting their heart broken, fighting about curfews, college and getting a job. You trade all of this for battling for funding, respite care, IEP updates and extended school years.
Stephanie is oblivious to all of this life hullaballoo. She knows what makes her happy and that is a warm bath, Disney characters and butterfly kisses from her mom. She knows not of greed, murder, war, or global warming. She cries when we leave her. She lights up like a summer sun when we return. She loves Disney dolls, eating frosting out of can and sneaking poptarts.
Autism – that 6 letter word that I once thought would kill me has become the very passion that drives my soul. From this challenge comes my purpose in life. In 2009 I started my own 501c3 non profit, Stephanie’s House, Inc. It is our mission to establish and support life homes for adults with autism. Because, as expected, there is nothing out there and one day we shall pass and who will care for our kids? Funding is tight. These adults need constant care in a home that is filled with love, joy, dignity and purpose. We are breaking some ground, creating some new rules and forging a path for those 1 in 50 parents who will need to care for an adult with autism.
Soon enough, at a time when I should be moving my daughter out of a college dorm and into her first apartment, I will instead be moving her and two others into their own life home. Conceived in love. Purchased in love. A legacy of love.
Today is graduation day. And I am sure I will have one heckofa blog later today as soon as I find my way thru the tears.
I do not know where 14 years have gone. And she is coming home. For good. How blessed am I as a mom to not have to let go of my daughter ever again. For the remainder of my days. Happy. And terrified. I hope we can make this work.
In the meantime, I am sending out HUGE thanks to our new supporters who, in the past week, have contributed another $55,000 to our organization.
HUGE thanks to Aimee Herbert and Debbie and Craig Dininny and family who organized an amazing Acoustics for Autism night at the State Theatre of Boyertown that raised over $3,000 for us!! A special thanks to Courtney and Zack Dininny who sang some great songs and to the local band YIKES! who donated their time and talents, as well. Thank you to the friends who donated some GREAT raffle baskets. Wow! The kind folks who came to the event walked away with awesome prizes.
We also send our thanks to Kevin Rhude, owner of the State Theatre of Boyertown, for donating the theatre and part of the ticket sales – $385 – to us. And to American Infrastructure Corp who donated $250. We pokies online are blessed.
This past week has also been what I will always call a “miracle” week. We have received a gift of $50,000 from a local family foundation. Somehow, we were put together. They do not want any publicity … they give from their hearts. This came the week of her graduation. The week we needed it the most. God is FABOO!!!
We pray now that our local bank, Phoenixville Federal Bank and Trust, will approve our mortgage request and that we will be in the house before August 1 to begin renovations.
We need a lot of help!! Following down payment, our coffers will be down and we need to keep as much of that as we can for programming and to pay for the house until we get all of our girls in to help.
We need carpet, hardwood flooring, tons of paint, contractors, plumbers and labor. We need aluminum siding, a garage door, backyard fencing, alarm systems. And so much more. Please help!! xxxooo
Marie, mom on a mission
We are pleased to announce that the “consolidated waiver” that one piece of signed paper that guarantees Stephanie care for life has been APPROVED!! We are now pretty much guaranteed that Stephanie will have care beginning June 28 and long after we have passed away. We are grateful to the many individuals who supported our case and to God, who surely blinked it through.
It has taken me a long time to fully realize the gift of my daughter. What a precious gift she is. What a sacrifice she has made to make this world a better place than how she found it. In her severe autism, she chose a mom who would take her challenges and help others.
While I will always miss every single “what could have been,” I have grown in the past 14 years. I have gotten over the death of every dream I ever had for her. Mind you, I still have my moments. Prom is next week. Always hard to see the facebook friend photos posted of all of their kids all dressed and sassy. Full futures ahead of them. Pretty. Poised. Perfect smiles. Parents on the other side of the camera beaming … sharing … not a second given to what their destiny could have been. I feel their joy.
Prom is truly an event in the special needs world. Goodness. No one should miss it. I have always gone every year to Steph’s house and done the hair and make up for the girls. I get them each a necklace and hair bows. I bring donated dresses. They look so sweet and grown up. I soak it all in like a mother sponge. This will be my last prom … and I have to work.
Kids arrive with aides. Sit at tables adorned with handmade paper flowers. This is not country club fancy, but it is cafeteria perfect all the same. Some of the boys in suits. Most of the girls wearing bathing suits under their dresses for discretion. Steph will sit. Look annoyed. Chew on a piece of overfried chicken, suck down an entire can of soda, get grease all over her face and hands, smear that grease all over her taffeta dress and belch. Loudly. Like clockwork.
And then they dance. About 75 kids spinning, jumping, waving their arms and screaming like they’ve all had 24 hours of Monster drink injections. I will never forget that first year when the most handsome young man came up and pulled Stephanie onto the dance floor. And she held his hands and rocked back and forth for the entire song, moaning and smiling, oblivious to her mother in tears.
This year she will have to go it alone. Perhaps like every 21-year-old should. Maybe she will be happy that her mom is not screaming at her from the sidelines, adjusting her straps, wiping her face with a napkin, scolding her for shoving an entire cupcake in her mouth and spewing cake down her front.
This is good stuff, no?? And in one month graduation.
I am blessed.
We have about one month until Stephanie graduates from the Devereux Kanner Center, a place she has called home for the last 14 years.
On May 22, she will turn 21, and we took her best online casinos on a trip to Disneyworld to celebrate. While it is always fun to head to Disney, it was a reminder of how different life is going to be for Andy and me in a few weeks.
Things are moving in rapid fashion! We have a house we want to buy and we are in meetings with a local Philadelphia bank to support a mortgage. Money is in. Two fund-raisers in the works and at the same time, it has been announced, officially, that 1 in 50 children will be diagnosed with autism. Those numbers are downright frightening. We knew they were coming. We have been working for years to be ready for the big day – aka graduation day – June 28, 2013. On this day, Stephanie will don a gown and maybe a cap for all of five seconds and be handed a diploma that offers her nothing but freedom from 14 years of great love and care at Devereux. No one will look at that paper. No college will see her transcripts. No employer will want at least a GED.
Graduation day for my daughter will not be from college. Ever. She will not be packing up her things to go away or move to her own apartment. I will not be scrambling to buy her dishes and curtains and bedding for her first place.
Instead, she will move in with Andy and me for a few months until we can get Stephanie’s House upgraded and modified. It needs EVERYTHING. We will be interviewing for a house mom to live in, her aides, her roommates and their families. She is ours for life and that means our life as we now know it is about to change in a HUGE way.
Stephanie cannot work. She doesn’t even know her last name. She cannot brush her own teeth let alone stuff envelopes. She will need an aide to work with her 8 hours a day and a night companion to make sure she is safe. She could not get out of a house on fire. She cannot take a bath alone. She cannot cook, clean, do laundry … what CAN she do? It is a short list.
She needs activities on a set schedule every day. I have to plan all of this for her. Swimming, shopping, walking, art classes, some socialization. I have to make a life for her.
I am not sure where 14 years have gone. In those 14 years, she has grown from a crazy 7-year-old to quite a demure young woman.
These children with autism become adults with autism. These adults need a life. We are blazing a trail. Join us.
Sending a HUGE thanks to ICON who donated $10,000 to us for our mission.
The sales are all complete from our recent Autism Shops events both LIVE and on Facebook and we are pleased to annouce that between sales and donations, we raised enough to reach our $150,000 goal for the year! In fact, we are now at $160,000!
The house is waiting to be purchased! Thank you to everyone who has supported our cause this year. We are busy now attending meetings and lining up services. It is a daunting task. If you are the parent of a child with intellectual disabilities who will need life assistance, you need to get on the bandwagon and MOVE. It is never too early, especially if you are a resident of Pennsylvania. The state wants out of the housing business … it is going to be up to the parents to create and maintain LIFE homes for their children.
Although there are other parents who have been doing the same thing we hope to do for our daughter, they are in quiet working mode, generous to share their hows and whys, but moving forward with life. It is our intention to learn from them and be trailblazers. If you think it is a huge problem now – think down the line.
Currently, our daughter is on a list to be placed in an appropriate home. There is NOTHING available and she has been in a residential program through her school since she was seven. She is top priority. She has funding. There are NO options.
Off to create some magic.
Marie and Andy Ludwig
We thank everyone who supported our shopping event this weekend. We raised close to $40,000!!
Please join us on December 8 starting at 6 p.m. for our online Facebook Sale. We saved GREAT items including over 50 Coach bags, make-up, WEN, tons of Honora pearls and sterling gemstone jewelry, kitchen items and more!! All half price plus a couple bucks for the house!!
The way it works is simple. Go to the link below. LIKE the page. I will be giving updates and all info you need. At 6 p.m. the night of Saturday, December 8, I will post a link to a new Facebook page. This page will have a catalog of items to buy. TONS of items. It is all first come, first gets the item. So, if there is ONE Coach bag style, whoever says I WANT IT first, gets it!!
We saved a lot of Mally, Laura Geller, Philosophy skin care, Honora Pearls, WEN and more, including some great Genius kitchen items. Plenty for all. Online sale will run thru the holiday.
Items sell out fast!!!
Simply keep track of what you buy by adding it to a sales form I will e-mail to you at your request before or after sale. Send form back to me by e-mail and I will send you total, with shipping. You mail us a check made out to Stephanie’s House, Inc. and we send goodies, in a box, pretty darn quick. Expect extra goodies in box, as well! This is the fourth time we have done a Facebook sale. It works beautifully!!! Hundreds of happy shoppers! Yes, we need checks. We do NOT do credit cards online yet. Checks help us to keep all of your money and not pay percentages to credit card and bank machine companies. We will do paypal if it means the difference between sale and no sale. However, know that Paypal holds all of our money for a long time. We need to buy a house!!!!
Go to link, check in and stay tuned.
Help us make his dream come true!!
Thank you to Jan Muller and Lisa Commodari for donating 5 cases of wine for our Friday preview party!!
Thank you to Art and Paul for the Rich Chicks sliders.
Just picked up from one of our angel donors – gorgeous Dooney and Bourke bag, 3 Bruce Makowsky Bags , a couple of Kathy Van Zeeland bags, Ninja Blender, Mally Nail Gel Kit, cookware, Temptations and more.
30 pounds of Corky’s pulled pork! Thank you, Jimmy Stovall!!
3o Grandmas Coffee cakes! Thank you Robert Katz and Joanne!!
Thank you to Nancy for the handmade fleece blankets!
30 Triple Chocolate Cheesecakes from Juniors! Thank you Alan, Cindy, Colette and Debbie!
Tons of WEN. Thank you to Chaz Dean and Linda Cooper and the entire WEN family.
Over $5000 worth of Philosophy – lotions, potions, bath, fragrances … we thank two very special angels!!
We have over 50 brand new authentic Coach bags donated!! Great deals!!
Thank you to Kathy Robinson for some beautiful hand crafted pieces of clothing.
Thank you to Meg Adams, gifted psychic, for two readings!
Thank you to the Desmond Great Valley for brunch for 4!
Thank you to Josh Harrell for Jock Soap year 2!!
Thank you to Amy Dluhy for allowing us to store in her basement!
Thank you to our friend Mark Bruecks for donating two lovely curio cabinets and a gorgeous king size bed frame!
Thank you to Diana Urbine for loads of great stuff.
Thank you to Miss Mary from Cheryl’s cookies for donating year 4!
Thank you to Joanne and everyone from KIND bars for coming to our event to hand out free bars, and also for 10 of their gift cubes and a $2500 donation.
Thank you to Joe Campanelli for 17 cases of safari mops, dusters and cleaning sponges!
Thank you to Ed from Harry London for 5 6 pound tins of gourmet chocolates!
Thank you to Milan and Cindy from Genius Kitchen for over 150 items!
Thank you to Mally Roncal who donated 200 kits, 100 lipglosses and one of her fab new gel nail kits over $20,000!
Thank you to Joel and Ralph from Honora Pearls who donated over 150 necklaces, bracelets and earrings.
Thank you to Laura Geller who donated hundreds of items totaling over $40,000!!
Thank you to Valerie Parr Hill for a generous selection of her fabulous home items.
Thank you to John McLemore and Masterbuilt for 6 turkey fryers.
Thank you to our friends at SideKicks Int’l for all of the great household items.
Thank you to our friend Lisa Commodari for a car crammed full of super kitchen items.
Thank you to Regina and Kim from Grandma Hoerner’s for the boxes of fresh preserves, jams, coffee and candles.
Thank you to Jimmy Stovall and Corky’s for once again providing all of the pulled pork for our sliders.
Thank you to Sweet Jazmine’s Bakery in Berwyn, PA – Kim – for her commitment to breakfast treats.
Thank you to jewelry designer Steven Lavaggi for reaching out to US to donate some of his wonderful pieces.
Thank you to Sue at Dooney and Bourke for the beautiful black leather DB tote.
Thank you to our friends at Coach for everything
Thank you to Tara at Temp-Tations for over 40 boxes of TT!
Thank you to Art and Paul at Rich Chicks for offering ANYTHING we need to feed our customers and volunteers.
Thank you to T O Epps and team for saving another truckload!
Thank you to Valerie Parr
May 25, 2011 Prom night at the Devereux Kanner Center
Who doesn”t relish that first word? That first time your child looks you in the eye and says “momma.”
Been waiting 19 years for the word to come from the lips of my daughter and it finally came. Last night. As I headed up the steps at Steph”s group home to get her and the three other young ladies ready for their prom. I heard her – kind of a squeal, but as plain as rain.
“Mommy! Mommy!” Followed by a huge squeeze around my neck. My 6 foot tall 19-year-old daughter, spewing her joy in every direction with the energy of TAZ.
All freshly scrubbed, the girls were ready for their gowns, lovingly chosen, fitted and tailored by the kindess of our dear new friend, Deborah VanCleve Phelps, owner of the beautiful VanCleve Collections in Paoli, PA. It isn”t every day that these girls get any kind of new dresses, let alone the kind of couture that one would expect to see at a high machine a sous gratuite Midas est tellement sur de sa machine a sous qu’il vous laisse l’essayer gratuitement sans meme telecharger quoi que ce soit. class event. Oh, AND matching handbags!! So, while the rest of the young gals at the event arrived in still lovely hand me downs and Goodwill finds, the girls of Roundhouse were the talk of the night! The light in the room.
This night meant so much to me and Andy! It was a chance to feel some sense of online casino enjoying the typical things that most take for granted. The only differences – well, this prom is held in a rundown school cafeteria. The decorations were from Party City. The kids wore handmade paper flower and drinking straw necklaces strung on yarn. The food was a piece of overcooked fried chicken,green beans and cornbread. The DJ was loud and the music just way too hyper for these kids who bounced … and bounced … and swayed and bounced – off the walls – for two hours. Energizer bunnies on crack! The time of their lives. Boys in shirts and pants that did not match. Girls in dresses with t-shirts and sports bras underneath lest be too revealing. A mish mash of misfits and God bless every one!
It was nothing and everything I have ever wanted for Stephanie. Just pure joy!
Just got done wrapping a few presents for Stephanie to open tomorrow on her 19th birthday. As I put the finishing touches on a twin bed size Disney Princess comforter, matching princess pillows and a spinning Cinderella battery operated toothbrush geared for ages 3- 7, I allow myself the requisite time to mourn the loss of my adult daughter while celebrating her perpetual toddlerhood.
Today, I should be readying her room as she returns from her first year of college. Anticipating a summer filled with mom and daughter outings, conversations out on the deck at night, fights about her rights to stay out past midnight, endless pacing and clock watching as she outs with friends and “Mom, can I borrow your car??”
I sift thru the pile of artwork she brings home for the Blackjack ar ett casinospel som ar som gjort for spel med hoga insatser. refrigerator each week – a mish mash of tissue paper squares on butterfly cutouts, coloring book pages filled with the skills of an infant scribble, jameshallison casino a handmade Mother”s Day card with a giant STEPHANIE on the inside and, of course, a LIST. That LIST of hers. Despite not being able to speak very well, or follow commands, she is able to type out words of things she wants … Princess and the Frog video. Princess and the Frog blanket. 101 Dalmation video. Jasmine doll. Mermaid doll. Anastatia doll … 100 or so things.
Thomas the Tank Engine video. My 19 year-old daughter wants a Thomas the Tank Engine video. I should be wrapping a Coach bag, a giftcard to Anthropologie, an Ipad.
I got her a Princess cake. Balloons. We will share a lunch at Sonic with her dad tomorrow. She will be forgotten by people, but never by us. It will be a day of joyful and loving celebration for her!
Tomorrow marks an official two years until she is done with school. Two years of intense fund raising, planning and hoping.