Giving back!

The Love Jar

Today marks the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness month. I’ve been thinking about this month for weeks now. I want to do something to give back but I couldn’t decide what I have the ability to do.

This morning, I woke up and dressed for work. While my husband and I were getting ready to walk out of the house, I realized it was October 1st. I also realized that I wasn’t wearing anything pink. I went back to change my clothes and decided that I would commit to wearing pink every day this month. It is the least that I can do, especially since I have not been able to come up with a way to give back. At least I can show my commitment to awareness through wearing pink.

On the way to work, I commented to my husband that I had posted 41 times on my blog. He responded that 41 blog posts means 41 pages in a book. I smiled at that!

Changing my clothes made us a few minutes late leaving the house – oops. My husband had an 8am meeting so I dropped him off and brought little man to daycare. After dropping little man off, I started thinking again about what I can do. I recalled my husband’s comment and thought to myself, Maybe one day I’ll be able to hand out my book to people undergoing cancer treatments! This made me smile again. I asked myself what my abilities are, thinking that I can utilize them in some way. Ok, I can write. How can I utilize that to help people? And then it hit me.

The Love Jar!

I wrote about The Love Jar that was created for me a few weeks back. This is the second one that I have received and I absolutely and completely LOVE IT. When I am having a bad day, I pull out a one or two (or five) of the strips of paper in there. They make me laugh or smile or cry or all of these at once. They make me feel so good inside. It helps alleviate the stresses of treatment and it reminds me of how loved I am. It gives me strength.

I want to create Love Jars for people undergoing treatment for cancer. I want to fill them with inspiration, positive thoughts and words of wisdom, strength and courage. All of the things that can help someone through the challenging treatment days. I want to bring them to my treatment center and leave them to be shared with the people who receive care there.

While this is a small gesture, it is something that can help make people smile and feel good, during a time they need it most. All of you make up the Red Phoenix community, which will be the heart and soul of these Love Jars. If you want to help by sharing your thoughts, kind words and encouragement, please please please do so! Leave a comment here, on the I am Red Phoenix Facebook page or send me an email at and I will gladly include it!

Here’s to giving back – and helping to make people smile!


Goodbye, queen

When we purchased our home, one of the cool things about it was the queen palm in front of the bay window. It was massive, rising high above our house, and it was beautiful.  Every year the palm fronds need to be trimmed. We usually time this right around when the seed pods begin to form because once the pods grow, they are quite heavy and drop onto our roof and yard. Each time they fall, they bang loudly and roll down the roof. It’s rather annoying all day but we also worry about the potential damage to the roof.  With everything happening recently, we didn’t have the tree cut like we normally do so the pods are fully formed and the seeds have been dropping on the house. This time, my husband pointed out a rotten smell around the tree as well, which we associated with the seeds, although we don’t remember the smell in years past.

There is a lot of construction being done on our road and many of the trees around our house have had limbs broken by the equipment moving around. This made me a little nervous because I didn’t know if that caused harm to the trees. I don’t want the trees to start dieing and become a risk of falling.

Yesterday we had a tree company come out to trim everything back and ensure they are all safe and healthy. When the arborist looked at the queen palm prior to trimming it, he called to let us know that the tree is rotting. The smell was coming from the pods.   The tree would be dead in 3 months.

Three. Months.

This tree, which weighs thousands of pounds, could have fallen directly on our house if it wasn’t taken down.

Funny how things work out sometimes, isn’t it? A little tree damage from construction prompted us to call about our trees and it ended up raising a bigger issue that could have been disastrous.

Have you experienced a time where you happened to follow a certain path, that ended up being a blessing in disguise?