There have been so many blessings that have come out of our journey the last five years. At the top of the list is most certainly the Ronald McDonald House of Baltimore. The staff has created such a warm community there, and it really is our home away from home. We love it and shout that from the rooftops!
We were so honored that they invited us to their Hamburgala fundraiser. The kids presented flowers to the chair of the committee, and we all held signs to direct people to dinner. It was such a fun evening and a great way to raise money for the new house!
Abby loved her new dress and enjoyed twirling in it!
Caleb got so many compliments on how sharp he looked.
Abby decided to practice her princess wave for Disney World while we waited for the shuttle to take us to the Gala at the Four Seasons. :)
Our menu for the night.
Everything served included McDonalds ingredients! (but much fancier!)
Our dessert was served in a Big Mac box :)
It was a tiny little cheeseburger Macaroon and a homemade Coke float in a miniature McCafe cup!
This is the design of the new house. They will double their capacity, which means they will be able to help SO many more families! Their goal is to never have to turn a family away again.
Sandy, the amazing director, gave a speech sharing about a few of the kids who have stayed at the House. Abby was one of them!
Sandy shared about Abby's difficult beginning, then explained about Abby's surgeries in the past and future.
But this was my favorite slide--it shows the hope and joy of our family!
After the program, we got a few pictures. This was underneath this great arch that had pictures of all kinds of kids from the House.
This was taken in front of one of the trees that lined the hallway with pictures of many RMH faces. The kids loved seeing so many of their friends on these trees!
Much of the decorations were done by my super-talented friend Kim!
We were able to meet Walt Williams, who is apparently one of Matt's childhood sports heroes (I'd never heard of him, but that's not surprising!) He was a superstar for University of Maryland basketball back in the 90s. He also donated one of the big packages that was auctioned off for $6,000! The live auction alone made over $50k, and there were also many items for silent auction as well. It was a fantastic fundraiser that will most definitely aid in the construction of the new house.
I had to do a little convincing to get the kids to join me in this photo booth. They were surprisingly cooperative, considering these were taken at 10:00 pm!!
(The shadows are because I took a picture of the printed picture they gave me.) You can go here to view all of the Photo Booth pictures of the night!
It was a wonderful night full of memories, thankfulness, and joy. And it was not lost on me the difference between this night and the same night a year ago, when we very nearly lost Abby due to a kink in her intubation tube. You can read about it here, but remembering that day made me even more thankful for such a wonderful night a year later.
Our journey isn't always easy, but it is people like our RMH family that make it SO worth it. They really do bring "Joy to the Journey."