Friday, May 21, 2010

Walmart Kick-Off Party!!

Yesterday, we attended the kick-off party at the North Bergen Walmart Supercenter. It was totally amazing!
The kids were put into one of the Walmart rigs, with a really wonderful driver named, Bob. Bob drove the kids around to the front of the store, and I helped them prepare for their grand entrance.
Among our guests were TV crews, reporters, and 11 different Walmart stores were represented. Jerry, the DM for Walmart, and Phil, from Children's Specialized were there, too. Of course, no CMN event for us would have been complete without our lovely Miss NJ, Ashley!!

When the kids came into the garden center, everyone was clapping and cheering. Music was playing and everyone was taking video and pictures. It was so overwhelming.

We all sat down, and listened to the great guest speakers. Everyone had wonderful things to say about Mackenzie & Michael. They talked about how strong they are, and how inspirational. It was absolutely amazing.

Miss NJ then gave Mackenzie a tiara and Michael a ribbon, and then one of the people from the Corporate Walmart gave each of the kids a $500 gift card for shopping before their trip!

There were 4 cakes for the kids, and they even sang Happy Birthday to Michael! We ate tons of great food, had a tour of the store, and did some shopping before heading home.

We were featured on a local news program as well, the link is here:

All in all, it was just a fantastic day, and the kids conked out early. Tomorrow we have the Walk N Roll to benefit the hospital, and then Sunday is Michael's 8th birthday. Only about one and a half more weeks and we have our big trip to Washington, D.C. to meet all the other Champions & the PRESIDENT!!!

Saturday, May 8, 2010


Well, today we helped to kick off the Costco Balloon Campaign in TWO locations in New Jersey today!

Our first stop was in Brick, NJ, where many of my friends go often. We met Lorraine, from CMN, there, and helped set up.

The staff was incredible, they had already put up hundreds and hundreds of balloons to form a beautiful mural and tribute to CMN. They gave all of us free smoothies, which were DELISH, and Mackenzie & Michael were given honorary employee badges that had their names and "2010 Champion" on it! We brought Mackenzie's good friend, Jessie, and they made her one, too! It said "2010 Champion Friend"--I thought that was so sweet!

The kids got right to work, too! Michael sat at the table for a while, encouraging people to buy balloons with his sweet face and kind demeanor. He shouted "Would you like to buy a balloon today?" in his adorable voice, it was nearly impossible for people to say no to him! ;)

The girls were busy selling balloons to customers that were coming off the check out lines, sitting and eating or coming into the store. They also brought kids over to our table to enter in the coloring contest. It was a great time!

From there, we headed to the Manahawkin Costco, where they had two HUGE cakes ready to be cut up and distributed to patrons in exchange for a donation to CMN. One of the employees there, Rose, just went above and beyond! She and her two daughters had knit stress balls, scarves and hats to give for donations. They also had popcorn, single roses for Mother's Day, mousepads and keychains. The girls were right in front of the store, and they were wonderful to us!

After we were filled with pizza and cake, we packed it up and headed home. The kids relaxed and we watched a movie together as a family. This whole experience just gets more and more wonderful the longer we continue. Now, we look forward to the Walk In the Parks Kick Off on the 13th in New Brunswick!!! EXCITING!!!

Friday, May 7, 2010

LakeWood Blueclaws & Our Sams Club Announcement

Our Wal*Mart announcement has been postponed until May 20th, but that has not meant that we were any less busy this week!!

On Monday, the wonderful owners and staff at Brick, NJ IHOP, invited us to attend a Lakewood Blueclaws Game...what they did not tell us-at least not until our arrival-was that the kids were going to be throwing out the first pitch! It was incredible!

You can check out Mackenzie's video of it here:

They filled us up with food and goodies and we had a WONDEFUL time with our friends, the Clutter's. They were the NJ Champion Family for 2009 and have really taken us under their wing to show us the ropes of this whole, wonderful ride!

Today, we had our formal announcement at our local Sams Club. Sams Club is one of the largest sponsors that Children's Miracle Network has, and, in fact, they sponsor the trips for ALL the Champion Children to go to D.C. and Orlando. They have raised over $500 million dollars to help CMN, and for that WE are grateful!

I had the opportunity to say a few words, and I was happy to do it. I find it is really important to let people know how much our family appreciates these things, as well as let them know exactly where their money is going. It was a great morning! Sam's Club even presented the kids with gifts-BRAND NEW DIGITAL CAMERAS for their trip to D.C.!!!! This was such perfect timing, as my camera BROKE at the Dance Marathon!! LOL!! I could not thank them enough!

See video of our Sam's Announcement here:

TOMORROW, we hit 2 Costco locations to tell our story and help raise money for CMN! We can't wait!!!!! Mackenzie's friend, Jessie is going to tag a long with us...Kenzie wants to share some of her happiness with her close friends!