Thursday, March 27, 2008

Today's Times

For those of you in the Clearwater, Cheney, Goddard and Garden Plain, Kansas area, check out today's edition of the Times-Sentinel newspaper. Some pictures and a story on the visit that our great friends made to help brighten the Easter season for children at Wesley Hospital. We can thank Kyrie for the good that continues to catch on! Thanks to everyone that participated and donated. Keep doing good!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

From scrapbookin' to cookbookin'.

Thanks to our new friend Amy and her friends & family sharing their cookbook for Lindsey Moser's scholarship fund, we were encouraged, enthused and gratefully guided to create one of our own to raise funds for pediatric brain cancer research! And we would LOVE to include YOU, too!

Currently, we are accepting recipe submissions for the following categories:

Appetizers & Snacks
Soups & Stews
Salads, Vegetables & Side Dishes
Breads & Breakfast
Meats & Main Dishes
Pies, Cakes, Cookies & Candies

And ... Kid Stuff (like easy recipes for kids to make or dishes that kids love)!

Another special thought to keep in mind: we're also thinking of giving special designation to those recipes that include robust, antioxidant ingredients also known as those "super foods" that are said to help prevent or fight against free radical that are believed to cause some cancers. So look for the tastiest recipes that include things like spinach, blueberries, garlic, onions, tomato sauce, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, carrots, brussel sprouts, flax seed/oil, red grapes, mushrooms, oranges, lemons, avocados, raspberries, pomegranate juice, grapefruit, sweet potatoes, rosemary, ginger and more.

To submit, just send your recipes to Jan at before the deadline: May 1, 2008.

Can't wait to see what's cooking in your kitchen!

Crop for our cause!

Announcing our first-ever Kyrie Foundation Krop fundraiser! For those of you new to the idea, a crop is where scrapbookers & paper crafters go to work on their projects, share a few laughs and recieve fun & fabulous freebies & prizes. So much fun!

Thanks to the dedication and generosity of our friend Christy and from her friends at ScrapFunattic & Scrappin Boot Camp, this kind of one-day event is planned to benefit the Kyrie Foundation!

Saturday, October 11, 2008 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Family Church, 11135 W Kellogg Wichita, KS
Registration will open June 1, 2008, but feel free to pass the news on now to those who you think might be interested.
$40 per seat, which includes lunch, dinner, goodie bag and shared use of our tool station.

We'll have lots more details to come on this regarding featured vendors, class offerings and prizes, so stay tuned! If you have questions in the meantime or if you would like to be a vendor, please feel free to e-mail

Monday, March 24, 2008

Sneak peep.

More of the Easter Bunny & Eggbert's trip to Wesley Hospital to come! Here's a quick snapshot of the bunny hop wagon train making its way through the hallways.

A note: For those of you in the area, look for a write-up this week in the Times-Sentinel about Easter Bunny & Eggbert's journey!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Friday of Good.

Found this very apropos explanation of Good Friday by Ken Collins:

Calling the day of the crucifixion ‘Good’ Friday is a designation that is peculiar to the English language. In German, for example, it is called Karfreitag. The Kar part is an obsolete word, the ancestor of the English word care in the sense of cares and woes, and it meant mourning. So in German, it is Mourning Friday. And that is what the disciples did on that day—they mourned. They thought all was lost.

... There are a number of cases in set phrases where the words God and good got switched around because of their similarity. One case was the phrase God be with you that has turned into good-bye. So perhaps Good Friday was originally God’s Friday. But I think we call it Good Friday because, in pious retrospect, all that tragedy brought about the greatest good there could be.

I can see virtue in either terminology. If we call it Mourning Friday, as in German, we are facing reality head on, taking up the cross if you will, fully conscious that the Christian walk is seldom a walk in the park. But if we call it Good Friday, as in English, we are confessing the Christian hope that no tragedy—not even death—can overwhelm God’s providence, love, and grace.

Today, we're honoring the goodness of that sacrifice by creating some goodness of our own. The Easter Bunny & Eggbert as well as a few eggstra-special helpers are planning their visit to Wesley Hospital this evening, putting some good into Good Friday and some cheer into an otherwise tough day for children and their families undergoing medical care. Photos to come next week!

Also, please keep the Halley family in your prayers this Easter weekend.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Today I'm thankful for support. I'm thankful for the way friends & family work together to lift one another up in times of trouble and days of loss. I'm thankful for how little favors, small gestures or an hour here and there can really matter to someone in big ways. I'm thankful for the way people come together to get things done. More than just coming together for entertainment or spectating, I love how friends & family can work together to better something, to do something, whether it's cleaning out the garage, planting a garden or working on a community project.

So we needed some good photos of Terry's beautiful bracelets that have been very popular, and who came to our rescue? A great friend with a great camera. Thank you, Shelby. These photos look incredible, don't they? Again, so thankful for that support.

Style One:

Style Two:

The Set:

What are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Good thoughts from our friend Amy.

Thank you, Amy, for sharing another perspective, another way for us to care for others. So good to broaden our scope.

I went to pick up a diet coke yesterday from McDonalds (as I am completely addicted) and on the way home, I decided to drive by the cemetary where Lindsey is buried. It turns out that two other Mulvane teenagers were killed in a car accident on November 11, 2006, and they are buried across the way from Linz. We are also friends of the families that lost these boys and had heard that their headstones were to be delivered this week. As I drove out there, I saw the cars of one of the families and a few friends. I decided to drive on in and let them know that I was thinking of them and that God had for whatever reason, led me out there. They were putting together memorabilia to put under the headstones and just watching as they dug the dirt surrounding the boys graves. It was heartbreaking, but so peaceful for the family. Anyway, it brought me to this discovery.

As we go on about our busy lives, the lives of those who have been "left behind" after a death, also go on. However, they go on and have to face the daily void of losing that loved one. We are only faced with it when we remember or are put in situations like I was yesterday. I think of Sam and Kyle, Lindsey and Kyrie a lot. I forget to include their families in my prayers though as we just get so busy with every day life. As a reminder for these people whose lives are no longer "normal" I have written their names on a piece of paper and put it by my bed. That way , I can remember to pray for them every single day. I cannot imagine what it must be like to live without one of our children, but using that phrase is only good for awhile. Doing something for those people instead of constantly feelings sorry for them is what they need. The only thing that I can think to do on a daily basis is to pray for those that have been left behind. I guess I feel like that is a daily reminder to myself at how blessed I am, but also a daily reminder to God that those people need his constant arms around them. Anyway...I just want everyone to remember Kyrie, AND Jordan & Lacie. I want to remember Lindsey AND Stephanie & Kerry Moser, Kyle Adams AND his family, Sam Keys AND his family...we have to pray for the living and remember their battle is daily.


We pray for Ethan AND his family, too.

Monday, March 17, 2008


Kyrie has another friend now, one who can run like the wind & jump into the clouds & play a round of hoops with the best of them, one who can tell her all about the Hawkeyes. Ethan went to his heavenly home on Saturday morning.

After years of bravely battling a relentless cancer and in the midst of growing up into an amazing "superboy," Ethan and his family have been an incredible inspiration to us. Their wherewithal, their outpouring of unceasing love and their tenacity to live an enriched, faith-filled life, to live in the moment and to make the next moment count, too, is a shining example of grace & fortitude.

For years, they have dwelled within the soul's marrow, where life & death duel round the clock, accepting every milestone, every setback and every smile as God's will, yet at the same time, grieving at the unfathomable way God has assigned those milestones, setbacks and smiles into a finite amount.

We are with you, Grimm family, in prayer, spirit, tears and hope.

And I saw the river
over which every soul must pass
to reach the kingdom of heaven
and the name of that river was suffering:
and I saw a boat which carries souls across the river
and the name of that boat was

Saint John of the Cross

Friday, March 14, 2008

Scrap chat.

Thank you for including us in your post, Scrap*Funattic!

For those of you scrappers out there, stay tuned! Hopefully, we'll be able to announce some fun news next week!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Today I'm thankful for community. We have a common unity here. Whether it's working toward a cure, praying for a little boy & his family, wearing bracelets or just coming together with a shared hope, suddenly the differences aren't so different.

There was a song at the Mark Schultz concert in which Mark asked the audience to use their cell phones to mimic the flickering lighter flames of concerts past. This photo doesn't do it justice, but just imagine an immense darkened theater full of these tiny, waving, glowing lights. We were in awe looking behind us at the sea of beaming, blue-ish points of light, a community of good hearts.

What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A prayer to spare.

Please hold Ethan and his family tight in your thoughts & prayers today. For those new to the blog, Ethan was diagnosed at age 4 with the same kind of brain tumor that Kyrie experienced. He even fought leukemia in the midst of fighting the PNET as well! Miraculously, he is 14 now, and that is due in large part to the support of his incredible family and the tender persistence of his mother, Marcy. Marcy was the only means of parental information for Jordan & Lacie at the time Kyrie was ill. Over the years, she has researched doctors, protocols and blessings all over the world in hopes of a breakthrough for Ethan.

Until somewhat recently, Ethan was attending school and rooting for the Iowa Hawkeyes. Yet just in the last days & hours, seizures have gripped Ethan's body. He is under the care their local children's hospital, and of course, in the care of the Almighty.

A prayer or two or fifty would certainly be appreciated.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Kyrie Eleison.

Chad & I both wish that we could have scooped up every reader here and taken you with us to the Mark Schultz/Kyrie's Gift concert this past weekend in Holland, MI. Amazing. The spirit of that night has been circling into every thought we've had since returning.

Firstly, Holland is an absolutely darling, lakeside town. Built by Dutch immigrants, Holland juxtaposes Lake Michigan, and we must have heard nearly 1,000 times that the summer--oh, the summer!--is the time to experience Holland at its best. The sun, the beaches, the saltwater taffy, the friendly people. However, arguably, this weekend was, for us, Holland at its best.

Flying from K.C. to Chicago and Chicago to Grand Rapids and driving from Grand Rapids to Holland, we checked into the Doubletree Hotel (Thank you, Doubletree, for sponsoring the concert! Our stay was impeccable and your support so generous.) to find a lovely welcome package from Kyrie's Gift: a collection of local specialties and a welcome note that we will treasure forever.

Then we made arrangements to meet Margorie & Leslie for the very first time in the lobby. You may wonder, and many of you have, how is it possible for a group of perfect strangers to have taken Kyrie into their hearts on a such a powerful level that they are inspired to create another non-profit in her name? How can one photo of Kyrie coloring spawn a major initiative to donate coloring books to hospitals' pediatric units? How is this true?

I can tell you that Margorie has been blessed with copious amounts of empathy. This gift has allowed her to care for another during a time when her own health was compromised, to care for a child, for a family and for a cause that most would have politely moved past. Compassion is as natural to her as her breathing. And since birds of a feather flock, it's understandable that those in her circle of friends and family have mighty shares of empathy and benevolence, too.

Something else, though, that Margorie, Jeff, Leslie, Lee and every other member and volunteer with Kyrie's Gift has is the gift of eagerness. There are no excuses here, only enthusiasm to do something. What can we do right now? What can we do next? Like the subtitle of this blog says, "goodness in action" personifies their endeavors. Margorie is spiritually responsive and quick to care, no questions asked. So amazing.

How many times do we get nudged or invited but opt to pass? She has taken this call and soared with it. As a mother of two young boys, she is an incredible example of combining motherhood and this newly inspired vocation.

Upon meeting, the hugs were long and the conversations tearful, yet we were all stirring with anticipation for the coming hours.

The Central Wesleyan Church in Holland is a massive construct. Housing worship, education, a children's center and a coffee shop, this venue was a welcoming spot for guests. (Thank you Central Wesleyan for hosting this event! A beautiful space for a beautiful cause.)

The foyer was packed with sponsors' tables and merchandise for all things Mark Schultz as people lined up in the frigid Michigan cold, waiting for the doors to open.

The sanctuary was filled with stretches of pews underneath a balcony of even more pews. The alter, redressed for Mark's performance, was flanked on either side with projection screens, which displayed a PowerPoint presentation showcasing the sponsors and explaining Kyrie's Gift.

Chad & I helped sell merchandise for a while, then we each were able to sit through the PowerPoint as guests took their seats. Tears rolled at the culmination of so much work, so much care, so much sadness and so much hope. Margorie was there for a perfectly timed hug, which, to me, symbolized this whole journey with her & Kyrie's Gift.

Then, it was time to take our seats--in the front row. Lights dimmed and POW!--the music began.

Mark's talent is truly genuine. Song after song was burgeoning with meaning and intent, and Margorie had specifically chosen Mark as a result of his cover of Kyrie Eleison-—a sign that made him stand out among other options.

Admittedly, some lyrics were difficult to hear, yet there was something soothing about hearing them in a crowd of 1,700 people there to hear these songs with us and to help Kyrie's Gift.

After the concert, a line snaked around a long winding hallway as Mark gave autographs to everyone who wanted one.

One group of young girls was thrilled, I mean the kind of thrilled that makes 10-, 11-, 12-year-old girls shriek and squeal and giggle, to meet Mark. At the very end of this river of people, Margorie introduced us to Mark, and we shared our thanks as well as Kyrie's story.

Then we took a few snapshots before heading into the night air, reeling from all the good done that night.

Oh--one important note! Although Lacie & Jordan couldn't be there in person, Margorie & Mark's manager arranged for them to view via Web cast! They saw the whole thing: the slideshow, the announcements, the concert and the post-concert entertainment, which consisted of us on our cell phone with Lacie & Jordan, running back & forth across the sanctuary, peering into lenses, trying to figure out which camera was Web casting.

The next morning, we were warmly greeted into Jeff & Margorie's home as we visited about the event, got to know one another better and shared stories from this past year and beyond. Lee & Leslie, who were to leave for Wichita early that morning, made a surprise visit back to the house after their flight was in jeopardy of being cancelled due to weather. Another day in Holland! And another chance for us to share with people who have taken to Kyrie so fondly.

Here's another important note, literally: Kyrie's Gift generously donated 10% of their monies raised from the concert to the Kyrie Foundation! So wondrously generous. What a humbling experience to be united in word & deed to such goodness.

We're still in awe frankly. To Holland, thank you for responding so magnificently to Mark & to Kyrie's Gift. To the sponsors, businesses take on character just as individuals do. Thank you for showing the entire community just how caring business can be. To Mark Schultz, thank you for providing a means to raise resources and a means to affect the spirit. And to Kyrie's Gift, thank you for dedicating yourselves for the last year to Kyrie's memory, thank you for opening your hearts so generously to Lacie, Jordan, their families and their friends, thank you for the overwhelming hospitality and thank you lifting our whole community of family & friends up in your thoughts, prayers and actions. Kyrie—oh, Lord, we are truly blessed by your friendship here on this earth.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Thankful Thursday

So much to be thankful for today as we prepare to journey northward tomorrow. I'm thankful for Margorie, Jeff, Leslie & Lee for pouring their hearts into creating another magnificent way for people to know Kyrie and for people to do something good. I'm grateful for all the tingly feelings that I get when I read stories like Alli's, Susan's, Amy's & Terry's. I'm thankful for the modern marvel of air travel, which from the outset, seems absolutely impossible, but somehow, some way it works. Kind of like a few other things that come to mind.

What are you thankful for today?

p.s. We'll take plenty of photos to share with all of you who can't make the trip. SO VERY EXCITING!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Small is Big.

Currently, Oprah has publicized her new reality game show, Big Give. Based on the premise of helping and giving to others, watching the promos, I have to say that's old hat for us here on Kyrie's blog. ;)

The idea of giving big is, indeed, a tremendous one: $10,000 donations, houses, cars, etc. However, I believe in how tremendous giving anything can be. Because giving small or simply giving at all is colossal in the eyes of the recipient and transformative in the soul of the giver. Just ask Alli, a long-time participant here on the blog. This is her story. Thank you, Alli!

So I know we have been looking and talking about how to make a change for the good, helping others when they need help, doing good & helping others and in the end, only getting out of it that great feeling in your heart that you have made a difference in someone’s life.

Well, here is our story.

I have a really good friend, and her name is Ginger. I met her through her son who is my age. Well, Ginger is very involved in her Church and is always helping the elderly at her church. She helps the ones who have lost all their loved ones or have no one to care for them with their day-to-day lives. It is the simple things that she does for them, like grocery shopping, taking them out to dinner on their birthdays, doctor appointments, any holiday she includes them. I have helped her with lots of little gifts for all of her adopted family.

Well, Ginger came to me needing my husbands help; James is an electrician. Loren, one of Ginger’s “pals,” lost his daughter this past summer in a plane crash overseas. She was all Loren had left. Ginger has helped him with so much, and when he decided to sell his house, she was right there. Ginger wanted James to look at the electrical and make sure it was up to code.

We met her at Loren’s house one Sunday after church. James looked at the electrical panel, and Ginger and I walked through the house. The living room was baby blue with gold and silver trim, the dinning room was baby pink and the rest of the house was the same drab color on the walls, trim and ceilings. Ginger was worried it would not sell due to the colors. The colors dated the house, and we all know in this day and age that not many want to walk into a house and see the potential. They want it move-in ready!

So I told her I would help her paint! She was ecstatic since no one in her family understood her and her “pals.” James had to do some minor electrica—so what the heck! Why not? The next day I went to Lowe’s and got all the supplies and paint. James got whatever it was he needed. So we painted and painted and painted, for a week and half. James finished his work and helped us paint. Through our hard work and long hours at Loren’s house, we were able to help an elderly man sell his house in ONE WEEK!! He no longer looked at the house as his home but a burden. So when I got the news that it sold, I had this great feeling inside. And part of me thought about Kyrie and our do good campaign! Loren took James and me out to dinner to celebrate, and I have to tell you, the man was moved to tears that two complete strangers who he had never met until after his house had sold would spend that much time and effort to help him.

So it may not have been much on a grand scale, but for a little elderly man named Loren, it changed his world!

Go, Kyrie, Go!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Bunny tracks.

Our dear friend Susan is about to don her ears again this year! Here's how you can help:

"Frosty" was just a short 2+ months ago, and we are all about over the cold and dreary days. So what could make us move from the thumpity-thump-thump of Frosty & Elf Rita to the hippotty-hop-hop of the Easter Bunny?!

Well...SPRING is just around the corner! And what a perfect way to celebrate warmer weather than to spread a little sunshine!!

The "Easter Bunny" (ME!)and her faithful assistant, "Eggbert", (Rita...great name for her I thought!)are headed back to the Wesley Hospital Pediatric Floor & PICU to cheer up some little ones that will be stuck in the hospital during Easter Weekend.

We will be following the Bunny Trail on Good Friday, March 21, 2008! (Only 3 weeks away!) Anyone interested in helping fill the Easter Basket (wagon), please feel free to donate: money, toys, stuffed animals, books, stickers, activities to do in bed, games, crafts, gift cards, color books, crayons, play dough, puzzles, etc...

Please have all donations to us by Friday, March 14.

Susan Jae Eckel "E.B."
3738 S. Dugan
Wichita, KS 67215

As we've done in the past, Easter 2007 and Christmas 2007, our visit will be in honor & memory of Kyrie Dawn Thome. (How we got started....)

GO! Kyrie!! GO!!!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

For Friday.

The washing machine bumbles and the dryer tumbles today as we prepare for our trip to Michigan this Friday for the Mark Schultz concert benefitting Kyrie's Gift. Chad & I are so looking forward to meeting Margorie and the entire KG crew for the very first time. There is still time for you to join us; you can purchase concert tickets here and plane tickets here. ;)

And it sounds like others are looking forward to the concert as well. Welcome new commentator, Julie! We look forward to meeting you this Friday, too.