Thursday, December 31, 2009

Just in case you didn't catch it!

We posted this on Facebook last week, but we wanted to make sure you saw it here, too. There was a lovely piece that aired on KWCH Channel 12 in Wichita about Frosty and Elf Rita's visit to Wesley. So much good has been pouring out into people because of this visit, this story, this love. Hope you are moved, too!

Thank you again, Susan, Rita, family and friends for making this happen! You are all so dear to us and have warmed so many hearts with your selfless, do-good-no-matter-what visits. May good, joyful blessings abound for 2010!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

As promised, we have a very special gift to give you!

For the last couple Christmases, that John Lennon song "So This is Christmas" has really bugged me. It's that line about "And what have you done?". I suppose a lot of people scratch their heads and wonder where the year went and what they have to show for it. Not here on Kyrie's blog, though. So, John, let me tell you what we've done.

So you know how a while back we all got together and thought that the way to save children from brain cancer was to instigate more research? And remember how we realized that the research came from raising money and the money came from, well, it came from anywhere and anybody? Remember how we sold t-shirts designed by Rhonna and beautiful bracelets made by Terry? Remember how you sent us those super recipes for our cookbook? Remember how Dr. Rosen spoke at the Wichita Baby Fare and how we all put together those happy, scrappy crops at Family Church? Remember how we walked those nine laps for the Twilight Walk at first in Clearwater and then the next year in Wichita? Remember how we were lucky enough to have artists from all over the world donate their work to this crazy idea called an art auction?

Remember how that $50,000 Kyrie Foundation Research Grant seemed so big, so far away in light of a tough economy and being a new, tiny, non-celebrity non-profit?

Guess what?

WE DID IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You, me, your family, your friends, their families, their friends, schoolteachers, farmers, stylists, attorneys, designers, doctors, writers, realtors, construction workers, moms, dads, aunts, uncles, grandpas, grandmas, brothers, sisters, young people, not so young people, this person, that person, people you knew, people you got to know, people you didn't even know you knew! WE ALL MADE THE FIRST-EVER KYRIE FOUNDATION RESEARCH GRANT TOGETHER!

This means that January 22, 2010, we'll be traveling to Asheville, North Carolina to meet with the wonderful people at the PBTF. From there, they'll help us decide where this money will do the most progressive good toward finding a real, viable cure. Something REAL. Not something that just looks good, sounds good or simply evaporates. This money has to work just as hard if not harder than we did to create it.

So we have much to celebrate today, don't we?! Thank you. THANK YOU. Thank you for making this happen. Know that, indeed and sincerely, you have made the world a better place not just in theory but in truth.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Thankful Thursday

Today I'm thankful for this night, a night to honor what was given freely with love, without expectation or manipulation or resentment or conditions. Just like the kind of giving we are capable of giving, too, right? To give our time because its use is bigger than if we kept it to ourselves. To give our ideas and energy because two brains are better than one ... and because you know what happens when two or more are gathered in His name. To give our resources and watch them multiply beyond our wildest dreams. To give our love and care because more than deserving it, he or she simply needs it.

I am thankful because of a night over 2,000 years ago means for us today losing someone we love in our lives is a temporary good-bye.

I'm thankful for nights like last night, when a group of warm-hearted do-gooders led by Frosty and Elf Rita find the courage to be in a place where no one wants to be at this time of year, where suffering for moms, dads, grandparents, siblings and children hangs heavy in fluorescent-lit hallways. I'm thankful that Kyrie is a conduit for sharing and caring and cheer and joy. She certainly was that for her parents when she was here.

I'm thankful for this night in November. These images are courtesy of Chris Bendet Photography, a fantastically generous photographer who made his second-annual appearance at the art auction. We are still reeling with gratitude for all that made that night possible.

Craig & Lee Lueck, Dave Lueck and Gareth Agnew were incredible. Shopping and chopping, getting and prepping, on their feet all day and night to make delicious and nutritious morsels for munching. Dave and Kristi Swob garnered a copious amount of donations for us and turned their dining room into Gift Central. For Anna's aunt Wendy for driving all the way from Wichita to support the event. So many other friends who made time that evening for this little cause with big might. Oh, so thankful for all of you.

For another year that has been particularly awful for Chad and me, these nights are the bright, hopeful lights of 2009. We are thankful that you haven't left us! We are thankful that brighter days lie ahead, that the journey is lighter when traveled with friends, and we're thankful that this is not the end.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A special visit today!

Today is the big day when Frosty, Elf Rita and the Merrymakers visit Wesley Hospital's pediatric unit to deliver all the goods and goodies that you've donated to them this year! They have been able to turn ordinary, everyday events like hosting a Halloween party and giving away unnecessary clothing into grand opportunities for giving to this special annual event.

I dropped off a sack of toys & books at Frosty's parents house last month and Frosty's pops told me how incredible it was for him to help make this delivery each year—the sheer joy on the children's faces, relief and gratitude in the parents' expressions, kind support from the nursing staff—it's all really miraculous to behold.

We are SO grateful for Frosty and Elf Rita's time, attention and energy to organize and manage this fantastic trip each year in Kyrie's name. You have altruistically grown this amazing good out of unspeakable sorrow. Your constant love and creativity has been a healing balm to our family in ways that we can't even find words to explain. We know that your visit will do precisely the same thing for other families tonight!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Wait till you get a load of this ...

Frosty has done it again! Now we've got an award-winning singer on our elf crew this year! Read this amazing note from Frosty:

You know that old saying…
"That is music to my ears!"

Well, I now have a whole new appreciation for that saying.

You see, I was sitting at the Jim Brickman concert in Wichita, Kansas on November 23, enjoying his beautiful talents, thinking how relaxing and soothing his piano music was. When I thought, "I know who could really use some relaxation and soothing!"

So the next day, I sent off an e-mail to Jim Brickman's public relations person, explaining Kyrie's story and telling about the "Frosty & Friends" annual Christmas Trip to Wesley Hospital. I shared with her that not only do we shower the children with gifts, but we also like to include the parents who are stuck there, ever-so-worried about their kiddos.

I inquired as to whether they would consider donating some of Jim Brickman's CD's for us to hand out to some of the parents that we met while we were making our rounds on December 23rd.

Immediately, I had a reply…
"How many do you need?!"


You see, people want to do good. They need to do good. It's not what the doing-good does for others, but what that doing-good does for US!

And sometimes all it takes is for someone to ask a simple question.
To make a request.
Just inquire.
And then…there it is. Goodness.

I answered the question with, "We usually visit between 20 to 30 children." And what did I find in my mailbox within just days?
30 of Jim Brickman's "Homecoming" holiday CDs.

Sent with love.
Filled with goodness.
And…sweet, sweet music.

Haven't heard of Jim Brickman? You are missing out! Check out his website, buy a CD for you, give one as a gift.

And listen.
Not only will you hear notes and chords and melodies and lyrics…but woven into all of that, oh-so-quiet, you can hear the chant of "Go Kyrie, Go!" "Go Kyrie, Go!"

Thank you Mr. Brickman. And thank you to Jim's public relations person. Frosty will be sure to pass on a good word for you two on to Santa!

Friday, December 18, 2009

What a creative do-good idea!

Frosty and Elf Rita have been very good this year working on being healthier and that meant that some of their clothes had become too big. So they simply sent this e-mail out to forward to friends, etc.:

Rita & Susan Jae have been cleaning out their closets!

It may be fun to lose weight -

but what do you do with all of the clothes that no longer fit?!


FREE…but with a catch!!


All we ask for is a "donation" towards our

Annual Kyrie Christmas Trip to Wesley Hospital

Pediatric / PICU Floor!

Cash - Toys - Color Books - Crayons - Games - Craft Kits

(Even just $1.00 per item towards "Frosty & Elf Rita's" Trip

would be GREAT!)

IF you are interested in looking and trying on…

let me know!

Wednesday evening THIS week would be perfect!

Ladies: XL - XXL - XXXL

16 - 18 - 20 - 22 - 24


Blouses - Shirts - Dresses - Skirts - Jeans - Slacks - Pants - Shorts - Capris

A little bit of EVERYTHING!

A variety of styles!!


Guess what!?!?!? They ended up raising $50 and 2 BAGS OF TOYS for their trip next week! Can you believe this? What a lovely, ingenious way to create a win-win-win-win! We love this thinking. SO inspiring, isn't it? What if we all could apply this thought pattern--making everything work in more ways than one.

THANK YOU friends of Frosty and Elf Rita! We hope your new clothes keep you as warm as the wonderful generosity you've given these families at Wesley.

And boy-howdy, do we have another amazing story to share tomorrow!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A gift to everyone.

Did I mention that we have a Christmas surprise for everyone?

Well, we do, so be sure to check Kyrie's blog on Christmas Day or thereafter. We're VERY excited! Hope you will be, too.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Holiday stuffings.

A big, warm round of thanks to everyone who popped by the Holiday Boutique last Saturday! Lacie reported that it was a lovely day to meet and greet with lovely, new friends. Seeds of great ideas hatched and a healthy amount of funds from that day is ready to be put into our research grant.

Enormous thanks to Stephanie for this brilliant idea, for thinking of us, for organizing and promoting and planning and managing. A big task with tremendous heart! Again, thanks to you do-good shoppers. Hope you knocked out some items on that list of yours.

In other news, don't forget about Frosty and Elf Rita's visit next Wednesday! Their deadline for donations was Sunday, but if you have giftcards or dollars that you would like to contribute, I'm sure they won't turn you down. ;) Hey! Have you received any gift cards from office parties, gift exchanges or secret Santas that you won't use? Why not donate those!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Holiday Boutique 2009!

Here's another great way to pick up a few gifts AND support The Kyrie Foundation! A few months ago, out of the clear, blue wonderment, Stephanie contacted us asking if it would be okay to organize a vendor event that would benefit our cause. Of course, we said YES! (in fact, we'd been hoping and praying for help just like this!). So guess what is happening THIS SATURDAY? Her event!!

Holiday Boutique 2009

Saturday, December 12
Sedgwick County Extension Education Center
7001 W. 21st St. N. (21st. St. at Ridge)
9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

Come shop these super-fab, good-hearted vendors: Celebrating Home, Close to My Heart, Cuddlebug Baby Gifts, Mary Kay, Pampered Chef, Premiere Designs Jewelry, Scentsy, Slumber Parties, Tastefully Simple, Tupperware and Uppercase Living.

Plus, there will be PRIZES given away from: Avivo, Beau Monde, Bella Luna, Il Vicino, Java Salon, Olive Garden, On The Border, Pei Wei, Progressions Salon & Day Spa and Under the Cork!

And, I believe, there just might be some Kyrie Foundation cookbooks and bracelets for sale that day, too.

With the shopping season in full swing, you'll probably be out an about that day in Wichita crossing items off your gift list. So wouldn't if be great if you could swing by the Holiday Boutique and take care of a bunch of gifts on your list for school teachers, friends, long-distance friends, sisters, moms, in-laws, co-workers, bosses, family gift exchanges, office gift exchanges, bus drivers, babysitters, your stylist, your clergy, care packages or December/January birthdays? And a portion of each purchase goes to help fight children's brain cancer?

Smart, do-gooder you are, Stephanie! Way to make shopping work in wonderous ways. Big thanks go to her and to ALL of the vendors and contributing businesses. We know first-hand how much time and energy it take to organize an event, so we are tremendously grateful to have your dedication benefit what we're doing.

See you Saturday!!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Update from Frosty!

Talk about initiative—this is amazing! I have always preferred QT for their cleanliness, but now they've got my business for anything convenience related! Read on ...

I decided to venture out a little bit this year and not only ask friends & family for donations towards our Annual Kyrie Christmas Trip to Wesley Hospital Pediatric/PICU Floor…(12/23/09)but to inquire with a couple of bigger entities.

In September, I sent a letter to the main office of QuikTrip in Wichita, explaining what we do and why we do it. I told them that not only do we hand out goodies to all the kiddos in the hospital, but we also like to give the parents a little something to help out a bit. Gas cards and gift certificates to restaurants.

And then…I waited.

I resent the letter in October, telling myself it had just gotten lost in the shuffle.

And…I waited.

Third time's a charm they say…so I re-mailed for the 3rd time in November.


Finally decided that they must have already filled their charitable donation limit, and told myself to mail that letter in May next year!

But then…the phone rang yesterday.

A nice lady saying she was from QuikTrip was on the other end of the line. She explained that their Contributions Committee only met quarterly,and yes they had received my letter(s)! :-)

The generous QuikTrip Contributions Committee voted to donate…

20 - $20.00 QuikTrip Gift Cards

Friends…that is $400.00 worth! $400.00 that that we can now spend on more goodies for those sick children. $400.00 of stuffed animals, games, craft kits, blankets, toys, books, playdough, coloring books & crayons.


Persistence pays off.

So does patience.

And so does generosity.

As I hope when you read this, you will file it away in your mind,and next time you need to swing in somewhere for gas, or a snack, or a soda, or a sandwich, or a lottery ticket, or…

that you will choose QUIKTRIP!

What goes around, comes around.

Pay it forward.

Do unto others as you would have them to unto you.

You get the drift…

Tis the Season!


Friday, December 4, 2009

Quick reminder.

If you're making holiday gift purchase online, we would LOVE it if you would go through the GoodSearch or iGive shopping portals in order to help The Kyrie Foundation! Make sure you've chosen to help The Kyrie Foundation with either site, then look for the online store you're wanting to shop. Click to its website and a percentage of everything you purchase will be donated—at no extra cost to you whatsoever!

It's SO easy to do good this way. I just ordered several gifts from this way on Monday--free shipping, too! Just a few other shopping ideas: for anything!
Apple Store for iTunes giftcards, iTouch, iPhone or computer-y stuff
Best Buy for movies, DVDs, electronics
eBay for everything! for jewelry, shoes, etc. for Kansas City Steaks and Diamonique ;)
Travelocity for holiday travel tickets/hotels
Toy R Us for toys
Walmart, Home Depot, Sears, Kohl's, Gap, Avon, Sephora, Tractor Supply Company, Snapfish, Walgreen's, Bass Pro Shops, Dick's Sporting Goods, NFL Shop, even eHarmony! Please—I'm begging you—just check these portals for your favorite stores before heading directly to those sites. You'll find yoga stuff, organic, stuff, internet service stuff, religious gift stuff, craft stuff, maternity stuff, golf stuff, school stuff—you name it!

Also, would you mind telling your friends about this, too? It's just so easy to do this, especially if you're already shopping online anyway, you know?

Monday, November 30, 2009


The hiatus has ended! But unfortunately, I only have a speck of time with which I must tell you that Frosty and Elf Rita are planning their annual trip to Wesley Hospital in Wichita for December 23!

I cannot believe another year has passed. Sometimes it's difficult to type past the lump that thought creates in my throat. However, there are children and families that will light up with surprise and gratitude over the bestowal of unexpected gift from Frosty and Elf Rita—I choose to focus on that.

This holiday weekend, I dropped off my bag o'goodies for the big trip at Frosty's parents' home. Frosty's dad, Buster, mentioned how wonderful it is to bring a little joy into these hospital rooms. He should know because he's been a helper both years now. He's seen the little miracles firsthand.

So ... if you'd like to donate a few toys to the trip, Frosty and Elf Rita would LOVE to have your support. Here are a few ideas

• groovy stuff for teen kids
• snuggly, new stuffed animals
• giftcards for the parents (Wal-Mart, Walgreens, McDonald's, Spangles, gas cards)
• books, activity packs, little electronic games, young child toys and anything you think would be easy to do while laying in a hospital bed.
• stickers

And of course, any cash donations go to the purchase of whatever might be in short supply for the trip this year. This year, the big visit is scheduled for Wednesday, December 23! So if you could have your donations to Susan by Sunday, December 13, that would be swell.

Susan Jae Eckel
3738 S. Dugan
Wichita, KS 67215

Saturday, November 14, 2009

A success!!

We have so much to tell you about the event on Thursday night! Great music, fantastic food, incredible art, lotsa fundraising and more gratitude than we can possibly convey. I can't wait to tell you about the Lueck family and Baby Cakes and the bartenders and the floral donations and the live auction! Right now, Chad and I are attending to matters that take us away from the blog, but we'll be back next week to fill you in.

For now, it's good to know that we came in financially very near what we did last year. In this economy, we consider that quite amazing. We hope you do, too.

Our first Ebay auction was fun, too. Congrats to all the winners!


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thankful Thursday

Busy, busy setting up for tonight! Oh, we have so much to be thankful for this Thursday:

• for people who care enough to stand with us
• for people who call in a favor or who ask friends to help us in unfathomable ways
• for the impressive list of generous gift donors, which continues to inspire us
• for the patience of friends and family in our lives who understand the sacrifices necessary to begin a nonprofit
• for the blessings that have floated into the planning of this event
• for the talent bestowed within the eyes, hands, hearts and brains of each donating artist
• for fortitude and endurance to work and plan and plan and work on events like tonight's
• for the courage to think we can give this cancer a showdown

We hope to see you tonight!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


So it's nearly here: the one & only Kyrie Foundation fundraiser commencing in Kansas City for 2009!

We've had several things fall into our laps over the last couple days, including a super cool photo image from We Are the Parsons, a whopping Kansas City Chiefs package of 2 December games for 4 people each plus parking and 2 signed prints from Shepherd Fairey in L.A. (the artist that composed the famous/infamous 2008 Obama campaign poster art.)

I can't tell you how crazy excited I am about chef Dave Lueck and chef Gareth Agnew preparing all of the delicious ingredients from Whole Foods Market on Metcalf. These are Dave's own recipes—creative and tantalizing. We know what a phenomenal task we have requested from him—cooking for over 200 people! We are still stunned at his amazing generosity of time and talent to the cause. Thank you from the bottom of our grateful stomachs and from entire throngs of taste buds!

Ebay auction
is still live—only until Friday at 8 p.m., though.

Tickets and more info are here:

If you're still on the fence whether or not to go tomorrow night, I say (and of course I'm terribly biased. ;)) GO! Not only is it a fun evening, not only will you have access to art you wouldn't otherwise, not only can you knock out some Christmas shopping, not only are your purchases tax free, not only will there be fantastic food and an open bar, not only will you enjoy great live jazz, but you will be doing all of to help a new, homegrown charity that is doing its best to grow and to save children's brains from cancer.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Meet the Artists, #6

We're in the home stretch until the big night this Thursday!! Woo-hoo! The Ebay auction is up and running, the tables are being delivered tomorrow, picked up framed art over lunch today, picking up linens Thursday morning, printing the bid sheets tonight, hanging art tomorrow night and meeting with WDAF Fox-4 for the live remote on Wednesday morning!

Meanwhile, here are three more generous artists whose work you'll see Thursday night.

Several months ago, I picked up a lovely donation from Rob Ryan, a London-based artist who is fantastically skilled at silhouette papercutting. The details that he can cut into a piece of paper are breathtakingly astonishing.

He even has beautiful packing tape. I'm not kidding. This is the tape his assistant Hazel used to pack up his donation for us.

Incredible, isn't it? What's more—you can buy this tape, too, here!

Pretty cool to know you are this close to an artist whose work has been on the cover of TIME.

Another Brit artist has contributed several ORIGINAL watercolor works that are super cool. Tom Hovey's work has been commissioned for the likes of Red Bull and Saatchi, a major worldwide advertising agency that has brought you messages from Toyota, Sony and Betty Crocker.

Tom has incredibly donated the following original pieces, which have graced Web pages here and there.

The popular blogger of House Wren Studio, Charlotte Lyons, has donated a darling 3-D fabric creation fashioned by her talented hands. Charlotte creates lovely, textural objects d' arte like this:

From her site: After growing up in a household decorated with colorful textiles and flea-market finds, Charlotte's work is still inspired by the humble designs of traditional art and craft and the inventive use of everyday materials. Born and educated in St. Louis, Charlotte raised three artistic daughters in a bright pink house near Chicago. Presently, she lives in a green house along the Hudson River in New York with her husband and daughters.

Charlotte’s work has been featured in Country Living, Victoria, Woman’s Day, Better Homes and Gardens, Somerset Life and Mary Engelbreit’s Home Companion and on HGTV, CBS and DIY networks. We thank her, thank her, thank her for being part of our work!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Why you're reading Kyrie's blog.

Sometimes amidst the event planning or simply flipping pages in a calendar, we can forget why we're doing this, why I'm typing posts and why you're reading them.

A couple months ago, we connected with Kate McRae, a five-year-old girl in Arizona who is battling the same kind of brain tumor that Kyrie did. Her mom keeps a Caring Bridge journal and there was a passage recently that brought me back in half a heartbeat to Kyrie's battle. This situation shouldn't happen—ever:

Frustrating night.. I guess that is to be expected right now. Kate's tummy was hurting some tonight. Immediately after I gave her chemotherapy she threw it up, along with her NG tube. She kept crying, knowing what that meant, another NG tube put down. I called the Dr on call, they agreed to redose her chemo and for me to put back down her tube. So after giving her tummy a little break. We went to put her tube back in. It was heartbreaking. She kept screaming "No, please, No!" She then started frantically saying "Please Jesus, heal me quick so mom doesn't have to do this to me, please Jesus". Over and over she screamed it. I was ready to scream with her but instead put the tube up her nose and down her throat. It makes them feel like they are choking. Not how you want to make your child feel. However, we know it is better than the alternative. So we just do it. Heart in throat.
Thankfully, she is now alseep. her tube is in, chemo stayed down this time, and all of her nightly medications are in. Her nightly feedings are now running.

This is just a snippet, one bit of one millisecond of the battle when you're fighting your baby's brain tumor.

And this passage, too. While the world is busying about making their holiday plans, there are families who cannot:

Reality is, we could be up here for Christmas, which means, no Christmas with all of the kids together. And Kate's birthday is the day after. The thought is so very discouraging. How could we not enjoy such a special holiday together. 2 kids at home, and one in the hospital going through an extremely tough and rigorous chemotherapy? No family breakfast, no opening stockings together, no traditions, no Christmas with the 5 of us. So the more we thought about it, the more we realized, we may get the chance to be home, we just don't know. But the reality is, there will be families up here. On the oncology floor, away from the traditions, their immediate families and extended families, fighting for the lives of their children. Some their resources spent to get their children treatment. Others deciding which children to spend Christmas with. Others wondering if this will be their last Christmas together. The thought never ceases to bring me to tears.

It's this reality that pushes us forward in the work we're doing. This is why we're hosting the fundraiser Thursday; this is why we launch items on eBay; this is why Frosty and Elf Rita go to Wesley Hospital each Christmas. This is why I'm here typing and you're here reading.

Friday, November 6, 2009


If you don't live in the K.C. area or are unable to attend next Thursday, you can still participate in the Metamorphosis 2009 eBay art auction, which goes live TONIGHT at 8:00 p.m. (CST).

Just go to eBay and type kyriefoundation (all one word) into their search bar. Up will pop a dozen artistic donations from a various artists: Julia Pott, Nate Williams, Jessica Hische, Gemma Correll, Keri Smith, Elektra, Milosz Konefal, Mark Laita, Sheri Berry Designs and Tuesday Schmidt!

Anyone from around the globe can bid, so feel free to pass this on to friends and family via e-nail who aren't local or to your pals on Facebook. We're so stinkin' excited about this!

Also, this online auction closes next Friday, November 13 at 8:00 p.m. CST. Just FYI.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Thankful Thursday

Oh, so much to be grateful for today!

* So thankful that we've been able to figure out and build an identity for The Kyrie Foundation on eBay for the online portion of Metamorphosis 2009! (Us cowpokes at the ranch are less tech savvy than we appear to be.) At least a dozen pieces of art will be up for auction. Set your alarms: the Metamorphosis eBay auction launches on TOMORROW, Friday, November 6 at 8:00 p.m. CST and runs through next Friday.

* So thankful that WDAF Fox-4 in Kansas City has scheduled a LIVE REMOTE from Studio 2131 at 8:50 a.m. on Wednesday morning as we're prepping the venue for Thursday night. Can you believe that?!? We really, really, really hope that it will raise awareness and inspire more guests for the event.


Can I let you in on a little secret?

Get close.



Okay, there are really super-thoughtful, super-affordable items being offered at the auction. I've been thinking all week that I should be doing all my shopping at charity auctions. Great deals. Specialty items. No tax. Every penny goes to a good cause. And with Christmas lists looming, you could knock out a good chunk with us!

Here are just a few of the most recent interesting additions:
• Need to clean a Johnson County speeding ticket from your record? You can bid on that.
• Want to grill Kansas City Steak Company steaks all summer long? You can bid on that.
• Want a gorgeous, unconventional photo shoot with We Are the Parsons? You can bid on that.
• And perhaps we'll even be able to offer a walk-on role with the Emmy-winning Unreal Housewives of Kansas City!

It's been a load of work to plan, but I can't imagine not doing something to fight this cancer. Today? Nine more families got the news while I was at work. I would hope that if I were one of those moms, somebodies like me and you would send a few e-mails, make a few phone calls, plan an event and put this research quest into high gear.

So thankful for all the little miracles that have bubbled up to make Metamorphosis 2009 happen.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Halloween helps Christmas

Some do-good inspiration from our favorite characters!

"Frosty" & "Elf Rita" put the word out to all of their friends, and once again they came thru! The "ticket" into their Annual Halloween Costume Party was a donation towards the Kyrie Christmas Trip to Wesley Hospital coming up in December.

36 party-goers donated: 58 items + $40.00 cash

12 Stuffed Animals
6 Dolls
8 Cars
7 Craft Kits
2 Electronic Games
4 Puzzles
1 Card Game
4 Color Books with Crayons
2 Stickers Books
1 Pack of Markers
8 Sesame Street Toys
1 Set of AAA Batteries

"THANKS!" to everyone including...'Jon & Kate + 8', KISS, Betty & Wilma, Punk Thugs, Vampire & Vampiress, Michael Jackson (before & after), the Blind Refs, and ALL of the generous donors who we claim as our friends!!

Friday, October 30, 2009

A neat reminder as we arrive at All Hallow's Eve/All Saints Day ...

There are no perfect human beings! Persons can be found who are good, very good indeed, and even great. There do in fact exist creators, seers, sages, saints, shakers, and movers... even if they are uncommon and do not come by the dozen. And yet these very same people can at times be boring, irritating, petulant, selfish, angry, or depressed. To avoid disillusionment with human nature, we must first give up our illusions about it.

Abraham Maslow

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Meet the artists, #5.

Last week, I went by the home of MJ Rigby and his family to pick up his fantastic donation to the art auction. What a treat! Not only did he contribute a fabulous piece to the event, but I was lucky enough to meet his lovely wife and two darling sons. From the moment I met MJ, I could tell that not only is he a riveting artist, but a devoted dad as well.

His acrylic color studies on glass are some of my favs--adds such vibrant conversation to any room. His architecture has been profiled on HGTV, and you can see an MJ Rigby installation in K.C. at JP's Wine Bar and pieces at the Leopold Gallery.

Kansas City artist Anne Garney has also donated a piece of her work to the auction. So thankful to have her vivid Fauves artwork. "The Fauves, a group of French artists in the early 1900s, painted with brilliant, luminous colors expressing a joyful passion for life."

From her site: In every city, I visit their Art Museums and Galleries. I love to see the paintings of the Impressionists and the Fauves. The Fauves, a group of French artists in the early 1900s, painted with brilliant, luminous colors expressing a joyful passion for life. My favorite artists from the Fauve movement include Andre Derain, Maurice Vlaminck, and Henri Matisse. When I was in the Mediterranean in 1999, I specifically took a train and boat to Saint Tropez to see the Musee de l'Annociade which has a large collection of Fauve paintings. It was wonderful to see. Of the Impressionists, I admire Vincent Van Gogh and Paul Gauguin, each having a unique use of color and expressive style. Lately, I've been studying the Expressionists and have enjoyed the paintings of Gabrielle Munter, Ernst Kirchner, August Macke and the early Wassily Kandinsky paintings.

Through our friend Kelly, we know of the talented Jeremy Collins. It was through Jeremy's blog that we learned of the Moore family in Liberty, MO, and their daughter Marley, who is currently fighting a valiant battle against a brain tumor.

Jeremy has a wonderful way of mixing shadows and color, gradient and hard lines.

And he obviously has a generous spirit to volunteer his work in order to spare children from brain cancer.

Thank you, dear artists. We are forever grateful.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Meet the Artists, #4.

Illustrator and designer Tuesday Schmidt has been an instrumental force of energy and possibility for Metamorphosis and for The Kyrie Foundation in Kansas City. Way back when—when this was just an inkling of an idea—she was one of the very first people to sign on and employ her friends and their friends to make this event happen, like a fairy godmother.

Not only can you see her work at shows around the area (and in Alaska!) but you can also find her styling on our 2009 poster and at the auction itself on November 12.

A good friend of Tuesday's became a good friend of Kyrie's as well. Jen Walker has wonderfully deft eye and hand for mixed media creations, which you will see for yourself in a few weeks. She also has a committed heart for helping fight this insidious cancer beast. Not only has Jen joined the fight against pediatric brain cancer, but she also is a vigilant fighter against breast cancer. She shared her work and event experience with Camp Quality, a local camp that hosts children who are fighting cancer, with us in order to help organize Metamorphosis. With a full-time, demanding job, an adorable young son, a supportive husband and the call to create all needing her, we are humbly grateful for her time contributed to our event.

Photographer Kelly Jackson is another incredibly generous creative who has blessed us with help, ideas, connections, resources and support. Kelly has a tenacious photography style that produces beautifully honest moments captured as life on photo paper. She brilliantly photographs children


family, seniors, new babies, couples--you name it. Luckier for us still, she also has a gallery of fine art prints from her European travels. Ah, gondolas in Venice, turrets in Turkey. We are fortunate to have such a steadfast friend who continues to give in ways that consistently amaze us.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Sweets from sweeties.

Two more fantastic contributors to the Metamorphosis 2009 experience!

Moxie Catering is relatively new on the scene in the catering world of K.C. And, whoa!, are they making a splash in my soup! Located in a cozy, stone-wall space in the Crossroads District, Jill and Wes create be-uuuu-tiful food--a feast for the eyes and the stomach!

For us, Moxie is whipping up something deliciously sweet for a post-pasta finish. If you have an event in your future for which you need gorgeous catering, please call Moxie. And ... you can come sample their wares November 12. Thank you, Moxie Catering!

And we have another sweet soul who has generously offered her baking expertise to the cause! You may see the name Em Byerly Wolinsky on our poster & postcards as a contributing artist, but she is also the entreprenuer behind 360 Degrees, her baking biz designed to make your taste buds frolic with abandon.

Designer by day, baketress by night—just the simple task of making the world beautifully delicious. If you need a super-special birthday cake, please get in touch 360 Degrees. Thank you, Em!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Meet the artists, #3.

Fantastic illustrator Nate Williams has donated a fabulously funky print design to Metamorphosis 2009! We are thrilled at his talent and amazed by his generosity. Nate creates pieces that I think are utter visual feasts, like this:

and this:

and this:

Nate donated more than one sample of his design, so if you're not in the K.C. area, you can still bid on his work when we unleash our eBay portion of Metamorphosis 2009. Lucky you!

Returning again this year for another generous appearance is the work of Kansas City photographer Scott Hepler. He is adroit and successful at commercial photography for clients like Applebee's, Visa and Cessna, but he also has a knack for capturing the serene like these examples.

I really appreciate how he can depict beauty in a masculine way. The best of strength and grace.

We are also thrilled to have the talented Flora Chang donating to the cause!

She has such a darling, effervescent style. Sometimes it's so refreshing to look at work that makes you feel child-like and joyful. Such a gift.

And this one she calls "Bad Cloud" because she doesn't like thunderstorms.

And did you know that if you go here, you can download little bookplates designed by Flora for the inside covers of your books that you loan out? Adorable!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Thankful Thursday

Today I'm thankful for this composition by columnist Christine Mason Miller. As the to-do list gets longer and longer, I'm thankful for a reminder like this. It's okay. Just breathe. It's okay.

“We aren't here to make things perfect. The snowflakes are perfect. The stars are perfect. Not us. Not us!” ~Moonstruck

There is something in the air, something that has been in the air all summer but is just now making itself widely known throughout the blogging universe – a feeling of too much and not enough, as in too much to do and not enough time, energy and resources to do it all. On the one hand, this struggle is a nice problem to have, as all the different balls everyone is trying to juggle have to do with things like family, career, travel, creativity and home. On the other hand, I can’t help but wonder why it is so many of us – successful, creative, powerful women – march through our days haunted by the question Am I enough?

... and no matter how well-intentioned we might be, we’re going to stumble through it at times. We’re going to miss lunch dates, disappoint our friends, exhaust ourselves and forget to pick up the milk. We’re human.

What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


The first 15 online registrants for Metamorphosis 2009 will get a certificate good for a free appetizer at the T-Rex Cafe in Legends at Village West! Get 'em while they're hot!

I mean, who can resist Pterodactyl Wings or the Nacho Mountain? ;)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Meet the artists, #2.

Genevieve Gail. Oh so lovely. She has a gentle way in which she crafts art that is just so lovely. We are lucky to have a contribution straight from her talented hands to you.

From her site: Genevieve currently creates her own line of designs including jewelry, crafts, illustrations, and fabrics displaying her signature style. Her artwork is an eclectic mixture of patterns combined with fresh color pallets to produce on-trend, whimsical designs. Her goal is to create fun products that puts smiles on people's faces! Look out for her debut collection for Windham Fabrics available in stores Oct. 2009!

Another loyal Metamorphosis contributor is back again this year! Shawna Stobaugh illustrates and designs charming depictions of animals, flora and fauna--and a couple bearded men, too!

You can find more of her work on her Etsy site, too, for sweet little holiday gifts.

We also welcome the generous, talented donor Jill Assman, a collage artist with a heckuvalotta heart.

And a healthy funny bone, too.

Thank you immensely for giving a part of your world to us.