Help us surprise Dad and his family with Christmas together!!!
As our friends and family know, after going through a very frightening, dramatic and stressful time over the last year and a half, we recently and happily made a huge and significant family discovery!!
If you don't know us personally, it's a long and trying story. I'll just say that, after accepting that it would never get better after several bad years, we went through the hardest year of our lives removing ourselves from a very unhealthy and dangerous situation, and have finally risen back up from the lowest point to once again being healthy and happy!
Last summer these kids had to give up their nice home, school, friends, most of their belongings, and even some family in order for me to get us to a safe place. They've been realistic, supportive and mostly happy all along, even when we finally arrived home with a total of $54 in cash only to find our living arrangements had fallen through. They were absolute troopers--keeping their heads and spirits high--while waking up in a VW bus to get dressed, have breakfast, be ready to be dropped off at school and pretend they weren't homeless all of last September. They managed to stay kind and polite to each other and were so brave while living in a hotel for another month and a half, then for the entire winter were able to get up at 5:30 in the morning for their hour-long commute from our temporary house so that they could stay in their awesome schools until we could get our own place in town. They've taken care of the dogs and themselves while I've worked two jobs, seven days a week, sometimes from 8:00 am until 3:00 the next morning, and helped me with the house when I was exhausted. Little Girl was SO BRAVE taking a paternity test and understanding what it meant, and was even excited about the news. Young Man has been so open-minded, welcoming and accepting of Dad and is happy to have a positive male figure in his life. I owed them the world simply for bringing them into it. I owe them the universe and more for them being who they are.
Dad has also been brave, immediately making arrangements to join us half a continent away when we found out he was Dad. He left his entire life, his parents, siblings, cousins, best friend....his job of seven years...his home and belongings...all without blinking an eye. He faced his fear and left his entire support system, believing that we would be our support system, without hesitation. He has worked SO hard, finding employment before even arriving here and heading out before sunrise to labor in the sometimes VERY hot and now freezing COLD weather. He has been nothing but loving, supportive and gentle. I often wish things would have been different so that none of us would have gone through what we did, but it's all for a reason and we both understand that. He has had every right to be angry, but instead he iss thrilled and looks to the future instead of what can't be changed. We love and adore him and I owe him and his entire family my whole heart aside from nine years....
!!!Help us surprise everybody with a Christmas visit!!!
I'm not telling any of them until they find it online or I am able to book the trip! Fun surprise!
What better time than Christmas to introduce cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents and even a great-grandmother to a Little Girl and Young Man they've never met?! Dad's family is dying to meet their newly-discovered relativess and there is a TON of happiness regarding our return to being a family.
Had it not been for the unseasonable weather and flooding this summer (he works in concrete and I make most of my money in the service industry with a large focus on tourism) we'd have been able to stash cash for the trip, but it just stopped raining in October. We get by, but no savings until next year. Hand to mouth for winter, indeed. Somebody recommended an online fundraiser so I talked with the kids and we decided to give it a shot.
This would be the best Christmas gift we could give the entire family!
Amount needed leaves room for flight cost increases before purchase.
Any funding over the cost of the flight will go toward flying from a closer airport, car rental, food, lodging and/or presents for the plethora of children in NY.
If we don't get enough for a flight, we'll rent a car and drive.
If we don't get enough for that, we'll just stack presents for the amazing 20+ cousins!!!
I'll try to get a family photo at Niagara Falls (weather permitting) and email to any donators. Thanks in advance!