Thursday, April 24, 2014

A Family's Struggling With Hoarding (Chapter 6)

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Lately, Mandy has been made feel guilty, as if she is doing everything wrong for the last five days according her mother’s negative attitude toward her each day. Dolly has been bringing in more stuff or junk, but refuses to go through she already has piled up in kitchen and liven room. She has bought Christmas supplies in that she bought and too many tables, both small and large! This type of behavior from Dolly has really frustrated Mandy and her husband Kyle, because Dolly just tells them to “shut up and leave her alone” whenever they say anything.

Unfortunately, now Mandy or Kyle are dealing with moving more of her stuff, in order to find certain dishes that they may need or to reach the dining room table. However, they cannot sit at the same table together: due to her stuff surrounding it, being on top of it, and being underneath it. They need a new or better stove, because the other one is on its last burner. Recently, Dolly gets angry or mad over the simplest things like: moving her boxes, throwing her trash away, and just generally cleaning up the kitchen.

Honestly, it is the frustrating to have limited access to dishes and other things that we may need while one of us is cooking. Just this week, she has brought home over fifty different items, which she got through Lola. Mandy’s best friend is Lola, so she has talked to Lola about not giving her any more stuff to bring home. However, Dolly goes down to Lola’s to beg for something she is going to put in yard sale, so she feels sorry for Dolly and gives in to her wants.

Nevertheless, Mandy’s best friend Lola hasn’t been around much, so Mandy has been feeling alone and stuck in a place that she doesn’t want to be. Thankfully, Lola helps Mandy get her mind off of the negative stuff and helps her focus on the positive things that she has in her life. For example, Mandy just stays in her room and tries to ignore her mother’s constant yelling by watching TV, as well as playing with her two dogs, listening to e-books, and writing.

Unfortunately, every day there is an argument over clothing, food, and anything else that Dolly feels belongs to her. So far, Mandy has pleaded with her mother to stop the yelling and constant screaming, but day after day it continues for whatever reason when Dolly gets in a nasty mood. Mandy just tries to ignore the arguing and fighting about stupid stuff, since she can get more clothes and she can get her own food.

Additionally, she feels berated and belittled by her own mother, which is hard to stomach sometimes and hard to handle mentally as well. Therefore, Mandy began seeking help through a psychiatrist and a counselor, which has helped. Especially, one she began taking mood stabilizers and anxiety medications, but her mom will always be a trigger for Mandy. She doesn’t want be disrespectful to her mother Dolly, but in many ways Mandy has became the parent and Dolly has became the spoiled child.

The role reversal has given Mandy things to think about, but what others suggest just will not work on her mother right now. She is defiant, greedy, and can be very nasty at times when she doesn’t get her way.
Unfortunately, Dolly will do things behind everyone’s back and by the time we find out about it, it is usually too late to take back. Mandy prays that one day, she can teach her mother the right way to love somebody. Instead of what she was taught, which is to buy things for those you love as a form of showing that person love. Changes can be difficult, yet with God’s help, patience, long-suffering, and faith can change anyone.

(2014, Crystal S. Kauffman/Fictional Short Story)

Monday, April 21, 2014

Manic Monday-April 21, 2014-Combating Depression

Manic Monday- Combating Depression


This is video of my best friend Laura and I discussing dealing with depression and ways to combat it, as well as other stuff. Hope you enjoy our new series of videos and my new videos that I will be uploading in near future. Sorry so long this time. Thanks for watching and subscribe to our channels. Sorry for mistake in video


Our Channels:
Crystal S. Kauffman aka Imogen Rayne (Imogen Rayne)
Laura Bragg (LAURA BRAGG)

Monday, March 31, 2014

MANIC MONDAY-March 2014



This is my best friend Laura and I are discussing how we generally cope with anxiety in our lives. I apologize for strong medications I am on, because it shows in the video. 

This is our first full video together, but we plan to do more in the future. I hope you will like and subscribe to my best friend's YouTube Channel.

Additionally, I know that I must break my habit of using the words, "you know". Have blessed night!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Wings of Hope Project - September 2014- Give Away

We successfully completed our Wings of Hope Project for March 27, 2014 give away, which consisted of 12 gift bags full of items that will be given to new patients at Shands Infusion Center for Women. We made up a nurses bag and threw some extra stuff in it, so the nurses can give them away to new patients. However, we need your help to continue the project and help us get ready for our next give away in September 2014. Let's try to get more than 12 gift bags for our next planned visit.

We do as three times in year: March, September, December. This way, we can reach as many patients as we can during each year. We pick out local cancer clinics or nursing homes to bless with our donated gifts. Please take a moment to look around your house and see if you may have some of the items that we need, in order to make this project a success. Each time we visit them, the nurses are happy to see us because they do not have items give out to the patients at this time due to hospital rules.

Ask your church, school, or organization to get involved and help us to continue to bless many patients  with these gifts of love. For September’s give away,  we will need at least 30 gift bags for men and women.

Items we Need:
Small gifts
Gifts bags
Thinking of you cards
Blankets
Bookmarks
Non profits- organizations wristbands- prostate, cervical, ovarian
Anything to cheer a patient up, men and women. Every new patient will get a bag until they run out. No candy!!!

Together we can make a difference!

Send items to:
Laugh at Cancer Support Community
c/o Crystal s. Kauffman
7192 Park City Dr.
Jacksonville, Florida, 32244

EMAIL me laughatcancer@gmail.com
If You send a donation of any kind.

FYI: The Support Community cost $30.00 a month to keep it open, so if you can help out in that please follow this link to our donate button. http://laughatcancer.ning.com

Friday, March 28, 2014

Wings of Hope Project for March 2014



Yesterday, we gave away 12 bags for new patients at Shand’s Infusion Center For Women, plus we threw extras in the nurse’s bag. So, the nurse can make a few more bags. I am excited because we were able to bless so many patients. Come on and get involved for September’s give away.
WE Need:
small gifts
gifts bags
thinking of you cards
Non profits- organizations wristbands- prostate, cervical, ovarian
Anything to cheer a patient, no candy or perishables. 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

A Family’s Struggle with Hoarding (Chapter 5)

Right after waking up, Mandy walked through her mother’s room and become instantly overcome with disbelief. She was irritated that her mother had most of her boxes in the center of the room, which made it harder to get around her mother and her wheelchair. Overwhelming chaos! Mandy thought as she retreated back to her room. It is way too early for this; she began repeating to herself and she held her head in her hands.

Today, Mandy is going to let her mom go through each box, by herself and put away the things she was pulling out. Most of the day, Mandy cleaned up her side of the house and began doing everybody’s laundry. Dolly managed to get through a few of the boxes, but in the meantime she filled her bed with stuff from the boxes. Now, she is cleaning off her bed and shoving stuff back into different boxes, which drives Mandy nuts.

Before Mandy walked in her computer room, she was baffled by what her mother was doing and offered to her put things where they belong.
“Why don’t you just put your stuff where it belongs, instead of putting it back in boxes?” Mandy asked her mother.
“Don’t worry about what I’m doing!” Dolly snapped.
Mandy felt a little angry, but she felt more crushed by her mother’s sharp tongue toward her at that moment. 

She felt like she had been punched in the stomach, yet Mandy couldn’t do anything about the intense feelings that she felt. Additionally, Dolly went back to empting certain boxes; while stuffing other slam full of stuff like knickknacks, mail, magazines, pictures, and clothing. Mandy thought they were making progress in de-cluttering their lives, but everyday it just seems like there’s more clutter.

Raymond is tired of moving Dolly’s boxes of stuff to different rooms and then two different spots all over the house. He is also annoyed when having to clean off her bed, whenever she piles it up with heavy things that she cannot move herself. Mandy gets overwhelmed by the constant barrage of boxes, which is stacked up and the small trail to the kitchen. Sometimes, Dolly will fall asleep in her wheelchair right in the middle of the small walkway she has created.

However, Mandy and Raymond knows that Dolly is trying to go through years and years of stuff that is piled in boxes. So, they are both trying to be patient and help her as much as they can, but Dolly has to be the one to go through her stuff. This way, she won’t think one of them is throwing her stuff away and she will know where she put her things. Mandy feels blessed that her mother has already gotten rid of a lot of boxes, but there are still many more to go.



(2014, Crystal S. Kauffman/Fictional Short Story)

A Family’s Struggle with Hoarding (Chapter 4)

This morning, when Mandy woke up, she found her mother passed out in her wheelchair with a large box of papers in front of her. She tried squeezing by Dolly without waking her up, but she was unable to make it around her wheelchair and the boxes that she has stacked up next to one of her dressers and medical cabinet. Mandy gently woke her up and Dolly seemed startled at first, but then she began going through the box once again. She begged her mom to lie down and get some rest, because she had been up all night going through the boxes.

Mandy went to the kitchen and noticed that there was as many boxes, as there was where she went to bed the night before. She felt pleased that her mother had taken the initiative to go through the boxes and start getting rid of things that she didn’t need. However, later on that day, Mandy found out that her mother had just consolidated the stuff into the different boxes. Finally, Mandy, asked Dolly if she could help her go through some more boxes and eliminate the need for so many boxes.

“No, I will do it myself. You will just throw my stuff away.” Dolly barked at Mandy.

“I promise that I will not throw any of your stuff away, without your permission.” Mandy replied.

Mandy knew that no matter what she does, her mother will always be a hoarder and the more she tries to organize Dolly’s life. The more resistance and negativity she receives from her mother, but Mandy is determined to somehow change circumstances that she has been dealt. Her grandparents were hoarders, just as her mother and her brother is a hoarder. Dolly is against having a yard sell or giving her stuff away to an organization that can use it to help other under families.

Currently, Dolly has three dressers full of clothing and boxes stacked about 5 foot high in some places, yet Mandy is proud that she has taken a time to finally eliminate many of the boxes that once filled up a whole room. At last count, she has about 30 more boxes to go through and then Mandy is hoping to talk her into going to her clothes. This way, she can live comfortably in the living room, instead of having the move boxes around constantly. Mandy’s mother has a lot of nice things, yet they are all stored in boxes and no one can see the beautiful pieces that she has collected over the years.

Mandy is thrilled that her mother has stayed on task and has gotten rid of many of the boxes that filled up the entire kitchen, as well as the living room. She doesn’t have that far to go, yet she still has a lot of boxes to go through still and Mandy will help her whenever she needs it. Maybe one day soon, Dolly will have her bedroom set up nicely and hopefully she will not have any more boxes full of papers are clothing. Honestly, Mandy’s mother has taken a big step in changing her life from a hoarder to someone who can show off her unique collections.

She has a long way to go still, because she needs to go through her many bags and purses, and order to find the best one for her to carry each day. Dolly also needs to gather her clothes and decide whether she wants some are not, so we can donate or sell the ones that she doesn’t want. At this point, Mandy is amazed at the progress that her mother has made, since we started this project six days ago. However, she wishes she could help her mother go through her stuff and finally get done with this daunting project.

(2014, Crystal S. Kauffman/Fictional Short Story)

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

A Family’s Struggle with Hoarding (Chapter 3)


“Here do you want this?” Dolly snidely asked.  

“What is it?” Mandy answered inquisitively.

Mandy instantly knew that her mother was in a bad mood today, but she was surprised when she saw the little black box she was holding. She took the little black box that her mother had given her and she took it with her to the kitchen. She slowly opened the box and was immediately stunned when she seen the beautiful necklace.

Mandy was puzzled by this gesture of kindness, despite her ill mood she was displaying at the time that Dolly gave her the gift.  She pulled the necklace out of the black box and put it on in front of the bathroom mirror. Mandy loved the necklace but, she wasn’t sure why her mother was in such an ill mood. Mandy headed back to her room, while wading her way around Dolly endless boxes of clothing and miscellaneous papers.

As Mandy walked by she said. “Thank you!”

“You’re welcome” Dolly grumpily stated.

About thirty minutes later, Mandy came out of her room, in order to help her mother go through more boxes. However, Dolly’s had changed drastically and she was very angry, but Mandy couldn’t figure out why she was so mad. Mandy try to ignore her attitude and continue working on getting her clothes separated. 
Suddenly, Dolly starts screaming at Mandy to leave her stuff alone, so Mandy decided to go to her room and watch a movie.

Mandy was feeling cold, but she has no warm shirts and she asked her mom if she could use one of her winter shirts. Dolly got angry and began ranting and raving about how Mandy needed to get her own clothes. However, Mandy got upset because she had lots of her own clothes when she moved in with her mother. Four year now, she has begged Dolly to go through her clothes and see if any of Mandy’s clothes are packed up with her clothes.

Unfortunately, Dolly refuses to go to her clothes and swears that none of Mandy’s clothes has gotten mixed up with her. Mandy’s mom has two closets full of clothes, as well as many boxes and baskets that are filled with clothing. Some of these clothes have not been touched in years, because they don’t fit her anymore. Currently, she is trying to get another closet built, in order to hold more of her clothes that she doesn’t want to get rid of.

Mandy believes that her mother should go through her clothes and keep what fits her, while letting the other clothes go to the local Goodwill. However, Dolly will not part with her clothes and she doesn’t really like sharing them with Mandy either. Right now, Mandy feels overwhelmed by the amount of boxes that are cluttering up her mother’s room and the kitchen. She prays that her mother will seek help for her problem with hoarding and with her depression.


(2014, Crystal S. Kauffman/Fictional Short Story)


Sunday, March 23, 2014

A Family’s Struggle with Hoarding (Chapter 2)

Dolly spent another day sorting through her boxes of stuff, but Mandy can’t tell whether there has been progress or not. Unfortunately, all Dolly has done is created a trail to everywhere that she needs need to go. Raymond has to move boxes, in order for Mandy to get in our dressing room or to get dishes out from under the cupboard.

Dolly still has boxes that are up under the table and blocking some of the cupboards, which can be very frustrating. Sometimes, Raymond and Mandy just want to throw the boxes away, especially the ones that just old magazines or old bills. However, Dolly would have a fit, if they were to touch any of her precious stuff.

Mandy and Raymond wants to be able to bring her friends over for a barbecue or just sit around and hang out together. Additionally, they want to be able to do a Bible study and invite people to join them, but the kitchen table is full of Dolly’s stuff. Every time Mandy moves it, somehow, Dolly places it right back up on the table.

Today, Mandy decided to work on a book that she’s been writing, plus, she worked a little on a volunteer project that she is involved with. Dolly continued moving stuff around, but all she did was place boxes to a different spot. Furthermore, Mandy’s new anxiety medication is working so she is able to tolerate the feeling of being overwhelmed when confront with Dolly’s stuff.

Mandy and Raymond are spending more time together, which helps Mandy by giving her the house and away from Dolly. Whenever they return to the house they both feel overwhelmed by a dreadful feeling that consumes them. Both of them know that she will have a room full of boxes, including part of the kitchen which is currently under and on the table.

One thing they have learned throughout the four years of living here is that Dolly will never change. She grew up with parents, who were hoarders and her brother is the same way. So, Mandy and Raymond just keep their side of the house clean and pray each day that Dolly will recognize her condition. Additionally, we pray that she realizes that she doesn't need all those boxes and will throw away the old stuff.

So far, Mandy and Raymond are doing their best with learning how to live with someone who is a compulsive hoarder. It’s not easy, but God doesn't put more on someone than they can handle. Thankfully, Mandy knows that with God’s help she will have the strength to endure the struggle with Dolly.

(2014, Crystal S. Kauffman/Fictional Short Story)


(Chapter 3 coming soon)

Saturday, March 22, 2014

How to Start Your Own Personal Prayer Journal


Four years ago, I founded an online support group for cancer patients and their families, which is named the Laugh at Cancer Support Community. Many times, I just listen to the members talk about their individual situation and we read the Bible together over the phone. However, I have had a few members asked me if I can teach them to pray, because most didn't feel comfortable talking out loud to God. So, I admitted that I don't pray out loud all the time either, instead I have kept a prayer journal for about ten years.
Use the talent that God gave you
Thankfully, a special woman named Ms. Annie gave me some helpful advice years ago about using the talent that God gave me. She encouraged me to write down my prayers to God, especially when I was a new Christian and in need of guidance. Whenever you pray, feel free play a musical instrument while praying or sing the prayer. This way, you are using your own talent to keep a close relationship with Jesus and God. Remember, that God knows your heart and you mind, so find a way to include him into your life every day in your own way.
Write what is in your heart
Never second guess yourself, instead always go with your own gut instinct and write what you feel led to discuss with God. Sometimes, it is easier to write down your feelings and thoughts, than it is to speak them out loud. You can open up your heart and let God know exactly what you feel and ask him to help you become a better person. Keeping a prayer journal will also help you obtain a closer relationship with your heavenly father and his son Jesus. No matter what you choose to write about in your prayer journal, be sure to remember to include Jesus Christ and repentance of your sins so God will hear you.

(Read More)

Friday, March 21, 2014

A Family’s Struggle with Hoarding

“Living with a hoarder or someone who piles stuff in boxes, can affect your whole life and can be very overwhelming for someone with your physiological conditions.” Doctor Tater stated right before their counseling session was over

“I know, but at this time I cannot move out or away from the home, because of my mother. She is in a wheelchair. Over last four years, I have discovered that she cannot live alone and she has no one else to depend on. My mother is very gullible and someone would hurt her in some way or another.” Mandy stated in despair. Mandy loved her mom, she gets tired of the constant arguing between her and her mother.

“We will need to work on your triggers or things the make you angry with her, so you can learn to tune her out. I am giving you several medications, which you are to take at breakfast and before bed. You can start them immediately, but I want to see you back in two weeks.”

Whenever Dolly begins to argue with Mandy, generally Mandy will be the first to walk away and try to get her mind on something else. She will read a book, listen to audio books, write something on the computer, listen to music, or watch TV. Lately, Mandy has been helping her mother Molly, move her boxes around, so she can go through them and get rid of more junk.

Well, just recently Mandy found out that her mother hasn’t been sleeping well, which makes her very grumpy toward Mandy every day. Raymond is Mandy’s husband and he is the only man, who will help Dolly with things she wants done. However, if Raymond fixes something like a wall, Dolly’s wheelchair puts holes all in it.

Mandy and Raymond gave up everything they owned, in order to come save the house from the City of Jacksonville, Florida. Now, Mandy finds herself daily wondering, why she came back to save the house and keep her mother in it. She knows that her mother is going to hoard stuff, but Mandy cannot stand tripping over her mother’s stuff.

To put it plain and simple, Dolly has probably over fifty or more boxes stack up full of a bunch of stuff the needs to be thrown away. However, Raymond and Mandy have slowly cleaned out each room with her boxes in it and made it rooms that they can all use. Now, Dolly has moved to a living room and her boxes, what with her, so far as she is made of dent in cleaning the boxes out.

Mandy and Raymond believes that she is an unappreciative, dictator, bully, and very disrespectful to them. Furthermore, Mandy will always love her mother, but she prays everyday that her mother will have a better her attitude toward her. Therefore, maybe kindness and love from Mandy and Raymond, Dolly will grow out of what she’s learned from her own parents and she will learn to de-clutter her own life.


(2014 Copyrighted, Crystal S. Kauffman)

(Fictional Story)

Touched by Cancer Again

I want to tell you about my beloved Uncle Chris, who is the only uncle that I have ever known throughout my life. He helped take care of me and my twin brother Thomas, as we grew into young children. 

To me, he is and always will be my favorite person, to hang out with and talk too. He used to be a local race car driver, even though he lost his left leg at fifteen due to a drunk driver.

As an adult, he has taught me many things, which I will remember for the rest of my life and I will pass on to my children. Unfortunately, about two weeks ago, he went to the emergency room because he couldn't breathe. After several tests, the doctor found several masses on his lungs and the doctor informed him that it may be cancer.

After getting out of the hospital, he was able to get into a clinic that has helped him to locate the resources that he needed to get the treatment he needed. However, he went back to the hospital and went to the emergency room because he couldn't breathe again. This time they kept him as a patient and he had some biopsies done, which came back stating that he has stage 4 lung cancer.

He will start chemotherapy tomorrow, but the long-term outlook is not good and we have no idea how long we will have with him. So, I am making the most out of the time I have with him and making as many memories as I can. Additionally, I am asking all who read my blogs to please pray for him, his family, friends, and my family.


Honestly, I love him so much and I am asking God to heal him, in whatever way he feels is necessary. His mother and father (my grandparents) have already passed away and are in heaven. They will both be there to welcome him with open arms, once his journey on this earth is done and God calls him home.   

Friday, March 14, 2014

Getting Your Business Noticed


Another neat way to advertise; is to plan a grand opening party at your company and invite as many people as you can. Check into promoting on your local radio station or local TV station of about your grand opening. You can serve food and refreshments, while using a promotion that can help families like giving out child identification kits. These special kits can usually be found at the local sheriff’s office or in city hall. This type of promotion can benefit your business and the community’s safety, as well as give parents a peace of mind.
       
Depend on word of mouth advertising, by friends and customers that you have already serve with respect and honesty. Ultimately, your happy customers will end up bringing the most business to your company and your product. Therefore, always find a way to reward your customers that help advertise, by referring their friends and family. Give them a discount for each friend and family, which they bring to your business.


Also, try to leave flyers and brochures, in certain places where you believe that people will see it. You could try passing out your business cards and flyers, whenever you meet new people daily. Additionally, began social networking on Facebook and Twitter, as well as other social networking sites. Advertising is hard work but once you start getting steady stream of customers, you will find that your efforts have paid off.        

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Learning to Laugh the Cancer Blues Away on a Private Support Community

Jacksonville, FL/Feb. 5, 2014: A private support community has been created to help families who have been touched by cancer in anyway. The networking site Laughatcancer.ning.com has been created to allow patients, survivors, and families to meet other families facing the same devastating diagnosis. However, with the new blossoming friendships and the social networking in this private support community, families will learn how to cope with cancer’s touch.    

“The private support community will allow members to share their journey through cancer’s touch,” stated the Founder, Crystal S. Kauffman. She is a cervical cancer 2B survivor of ten years now and has kept the Laugh at Cancer Support Community alive and growing since 2004. She used the networking feature through Facebook to keep the community alive, after leaving Ning.com in 2012. However, she recently decided to return to Ning.com, in order to offer the private networking feature, which will make it easier for member’s to tell their story.

The networking feature will offer families: support, encouragement, and inspiration from volunteers or other members. As of Feb. 4th, 2014, Mrs. Kauffman reopened the private support community and is excited about its future potential.  Every new member will have the opportunity to meet new friends, volunteer in the community, or tell their story to other members. The private support community will allow member honor loved ones, start a discussion, join a group, or keep a daily blog.

In the future, she hopes the private support community will continue to grow, while raising awareness and celebrating the beauty of life. Mrs. Kauffman believes that laughter will help drive the cancer blues away. However, once the members begin networking with each other, friendships will begin to blossom into laughter and love for one another. Therefore, she would like to invite everyone to join us, especially those who have been touched by cancer or want to become a volunteer.  

The Laugh at Cancer Support Community/Website: http://laughatcancer.tripod.com

The Laugh at Cancer Support Community/Network: http://www.laughatcancer.ning.com



Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Laugh at Cancer Support Community has Reopened on Ning!

We Are Back!

I am trusting God and reopening the Laugh at Cancer Support Community at Ning.com, due to request from Facebook for a private community. The support community will have a new web address http://laughatcancer.ning.com and all are welcome to join us. Come join us is our mission to offer encouragement, laughter, inspiration, and support to families who need it.

If you were a member in our other support community or are currently a Facebook Page member, please join us at the PRIVATE support community and tell your story. You will meet other, who can be friends and encourage you in your journey.

Furthermore, if you are helping with the fight against cancer, come join us and tell others about your organization. You may create a group within our private community/network. This support community is a networking site for families touched by cancer whether…directly or indirectly! So come join us and help us make a difference by working together.

Volunteers Needed

I will need design volunteers, community volunteers, and help spreading the word about our new support community’s address.  Additionally, I need help gathering “Thinking of You” greeting cards by July 30th of each year for our Wings of Hope Project. Every year, I pass these out at cancer centers and nursing homes, because many patients don’t get visitors and it is nice to know someone cares. If you can help, please contact me, by phone 904-450-3560 or email laughatcancer@gmail.com.

Donations Needed

Honestly, it will cost $30.00 every month and I will need to raise $30.00 by the 14th of each month. Even a little amount will help me to continue keeping this private network or support community open for families touched by this devastating disease. I will need help covering this cost each month, so if you would like to help us keep the community alive and growing. My PayPal email is laughatcancer@gmail.com and you can email me at that address for any other information you may need.


We are not a non-profit organization; instead we are a support community/network that cares about those families touched by cancer. If you are able to help in any way, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. First payment is due Feb. 14th, 2014. Come join us and let’s make a difference together, also contact me if you can volunteer in any way.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Seniors Can Overcome The Blues by Volunteering

Are you experiencing the holiday blues or struggling with loneliness this year? If so, you are not alone, because many seniors feel the same around this time of year. Maybe you are mourning the loss of a spouse or a loved one. Nevertheless, if you feel depressed, maybe it is time to talk with your personal doctor. Fortunately, there is help for depression, which can allow you to feel like yourself again.
Your physician will know if you need treatment or if the feelings will pass in time, so do not wait to seek help. Get out there and make a difference in your neighborhood, instead of feeling down or blue. Did you know that working with other seniors could be very rewarding and challenging for anyone?
Ways to Help
Maybe, you would enjoy being a heath care volunteer, which allows you to help others and create more friendships. This will allow you to comfort a baby, feed a sick child, or help a patient's family during a treatment or surgery. Many sick or terminal patient, can use and extra hand around the house or at a nursing home. Check out the local nursing facilities or visit local seniors, who are unable to leave their home.
Show someone you care, by visiting with them and being a true friend. Try visiting seniors in your neighborhood and bring them homemade meals. Some seniors require daily care like bathing and feeding, but others require a little more help or just an extra hand. Always make sure you are ready to learn more, because you may need these skills daily..
Starting a Mission
Your local church may have opportunities to help a local families or create you own mission Furthermore, you could give out Bibles, non-perishable food, or personal care boxes to people that truly need the help. There may be a few families in you neighborhood that desperately needs your kindness and encouragement. This year, some are spending the holidays in a nursing home or the hospital, due to their own illness.
If you like animals, then volunteer at the local dog pound or animal shelter. They will use all the help that they can get! They need people every day, to help care for these lonely abandoned pets. You may even find a special friend, who can help end your struggle with loneliness. Talk to your local shelter and ask about ways to help these homeless pets.
Getting Involved
Additionally, many local schools are in need of extra help, during each school year. Ask the local school or school board about the volunteer opportunities, which are available to you. Then, take the proper steps to get involved and watch as the blues begin to disappear. Every elementary school needs volunteers, in order to give the teachers an extra hand with the students.
Fortunately, there are several senior centers that offer fellowship with others, who are looking for companionship or friendship. These centers may also provide exercises or games, for everyone to participate in. Look around in your community for the nearest senior center and enjoy the companions, who are waiting for you. Many centers have scheduled events that everyone can do together, as a group or alone.
Making a Difference
In addition, many other local groups are looking for volunteers, in order to help spread their message. Be sure to look for local groups and volunteer opportunities that will spark your passion. No matter what you choose, you will find a way to get involved and help others that need it the most. Many families in your neighborhood may need a helping hand or a just a friend.
Either way, when you become a volunteer, you are helping other people and yourself. Thankfully, you will help your neighborhood or the city become stronger, while defeating your loneliness. However, be sure to find a way to help in your own community and the people in it. Therefore, you will be making a difference, so look for ways to get involved and beat the blues.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Remembering Lost Loved Ones

My Granddad and I, three weeks before he passed away. 

Do you ever think of me?
Are your truly happy and free?
I am weak and sad tonight,
Embrace me with your heavenly light.

My heart is empty and blue,
Everyday is painful without you.
The cancer took you away,
I miss you in every way.

You suffered and died so quick,
After the illness made you so sick.
Each memory blows me apart,
The anger has captured my heart.


Hold me, as I face my fears,
Can you wipe away my tears?
Why did you have to die?
Will the tears ever dry?


By, Crystal S. Kauffman
©2007

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Anniversary of a Dream


Missing the moments we spent,
Wondering where the time went.
Time has passed without a glance,
Sometimes, I wish I took that chance.

On our anniversary of the day we met,
I can’t help but wonder if I will ever forget.
The love we shared so long ago,
I wonder if you will ever know.

Never will I forget the dance we shared,
Nor will I ever believe you never cared.
Fate happened and tore us apart,
Yet, your love remains locked in my heart.

We will meet as we did once before,
But, only in my dreams forever more
Years have passed and time has sped by,
However, I will not let myself cry.

I will meet you once again in my dreams,
Where not everything is as it seems.
The secret garden I built back then,
I will always open up to let you in.




Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Enter a Short Story Contest


     
Are you an aspiring author that wants to enter your short story in a contest? Is your story ready to compete against thousands of other stories? Then, the internet has become a perfect tool for you to get started. First of all, you will need to research the different writing communities for legitimate contest to enter. Websites for author like www.writing.com or www.fanstory.com have contests listings and community boards for aspiring writers.

      Fortunately, there are several websites that are full of contest listings and tip that can help you become a winning author. Most contest websites will list its guidelines and types of stories that they accept. Some contests are looking for certain types of stories to judge; like fantasy, adventure, comedy, drama and overcoming life’s trials or challenges. Every contest has its own requirements, which that should followed by the contestant.

       Sometimes, you will find contests that require an entry fee or a reading fee, before they will even consider judging your story. Other contests may only accept submissions from children under 18 or minorities from other cultures. So make sure that you read and understand the contest rules, as well as the guidelines. This way, you can decide if your story is appropriate for the short story contest that you are planning to enter.

       Furthermore, you can join www.writersmarket.com and find current contests that have just been listed.  Also, there are magazines like Writer’s Digest that list contest and markets for aspiring writers, who want to showcase their story or talent. Therefore, it shouldn’t be hard to find a contest that would be perfect for your literary masterpiece. However, beware of the different type of scams, which has hit the writing world by storm and has disappointed many new authors.  

        Always be sure to check out the company and the contests out, by calling the Better Business Bureau. Plus, you can search the internet and writing communities for complaint and comments about the contest. But, there are also websites like: www.winningwriters.com, which is exposing the writing scams that exist. Then, you can protect yourself from the disappointment and frustration that scams cause all of their victims.  

         Additionally, try to submit more of your writing to separate contest, since this will increase your chances of winning. Before you send off your contest entry, be sure to write down the contest information in a safe place. You should create a submission notebook or index cards, in order to keep detailed records of your submissions.  So, you will avoid submitting stories that have already been judged by another contest.

          Some contests require newly written stories and other contest will allow simultaneous submissions by new authors. However, you must be sure what each judge is looking for, if you want your story to at least be read. Plus, be sure to send your best writing, because you will be competing against other freelance writers. Therefore, use your best writing and proofreading skills, in order to increase your chance of winning.

Monday, January 20, 2014

How Would I Change the World?

       
First, I would start by spreading seeds of kindness to all nations and change the heart of every adult or child. Only, then can a reaction began to take effect and they will inspired to spread their seeds of kindness.  I’d start by spreading seeds of kindness around my own city and neighborhood. Then, I would try to visit every state and nation trying to motivate or inspire others by my actions. However, I must find the best ways to impact somebody with an act of kindness.

        In return, they will also want to spreads seeds of kindness to those they love and know. Change will begin, as the heart of every man and nation has been affected by the kindness of others. The reaction will spread across every ocean and reach those with the coldest hearts. By spreading the seeds of kindness, I can stop the violence and sorrow. Therefore, laughter and love will run rampant in the heart of every man, woman, and child. 
        
       No one would cry, as the love and welfare of others will rule their heart and mind. Never will hunger kill another living person, because there would be enough to eat. All children will experience unconditional love, instead of hate and anger. There would be no more terrorists left, due to their hearts and minds, being filled with unconditional kindness. Therefore, the world can change, if one person is able to start a chain reaction of love.  
       
      So, I will spend my life trying to spread seeds of kindness to those I met. However, I hope my actions can make a difference in this world of mine. As I walk daily with many, whom I will influence with my own plan to care to care for others. Hopefully, I can reach their heart and start a chain reaction that flows…all around the world!


Thursday, January 9, 2014

Removing Negative Labels from Your Life

Sometimes during your life, you will hear negative labels that have been placed upon you by teachers and parents. Maybe your parents told you, you will never amount to nothing or teachers have told you that you are not smart enough to pass a grade. Unfortunately, we tend to believe what others say about us, even though we know that they are wrong. Something I learned from Sunday school is that God doesn't make junk, so how can we amount to nothing or be worthless?
With God as our guide, we will learn by faith that he has a divine plan, which will help us reach our full potential. Never hold onto these labels that others have given you, which is solely based their limited observation of you and your past mistakes or behaviors. You are not worthless or a freak in God’s eyes, because you were made in his image and he has a plan that will lead you to success. However, you must first believe in Jesus Christ and repent of your sins, in order to become a new creature in Christ.
God has a plan for your life that will help you reach your full potential, whether it is to be successful in business, a ministry, or as a witness for God. Start today, remove the negative labels from your life and soon others will see how God has changed your life as well. Furthermore, believe in yourself and take a moment to thank God for bringing you out of past behaviors and mistakes like: addiction, failures, and other labels that may have held you back for so long.
Never let anyone speak a negative label over your life, because God has put many positive labels into your life. The day you became a Christian, your life became new and God spoke blessings over your life. So now, it is up to you to remove these labels and speak positive things into your life, so you will begin to the many blessings that God has in store for you. However, if you continue to believe the negative labels that people spoke about you, then you may be missing out on the many successes God has been preparing for you.
“Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him” James 1:12

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Blankets of Hope Project 2013


Blankets of Hope 2013

 By Crystal S. Kauffman

This Christmas, help me spread the joy of Christmas cheer to the patients in local nursing, which has many patients. Some patients have no family and would enjoy receiving the small gifts from someone. There are many ways you can help like you can donate signed Christmas cards, small gifts and/or, throw blankets. Items must be donated by Dec. 20, 2013, in order for the nursing home to get them before Christmas Day
Throw Blankets

The blankets are desperately needed, because the patients tend to get the chills and a fleece throw blanket would be perfect on warming the up. The must be a typical sized throw blanket, so it is easy for the patient to carry with them. The blanket will represent all of the people out here thinking about them during the holidays. Please feel free to email me for my address.
Christmas Cards

The Christmas cards should be signed with your family’s name or you may allow everyone to sign it. Children can make homemade cards or they can draw pictures. I am hoping to get enough things to give out to each patient there. Additionally, write Patient on the front and Christmas on the back of the envelope. These cards seem to brighten the patient’s day and are generally inexpensive, since money is tight in this economy.
Small Gifts

The patients love getting small gifts like figurines of any kind. I usually go to the dollar store and get some from there for cheap, but this year I cannot afford to buy them myself. So, if you would like to volunteer and help me gather up some cute small figurines like angels. Most patients love getting an angel for Christmas with a card and a blanket. This shows that there are people out in the world who do care about them, even if they have no family coming to see them.
Volunteering

You can help by donating any of these items. Patients will be thrilled and feel blessed to receive anything that you can donate. Without the kind donations of others helping, the nursing home cannot possibly give something to all of the patients. Let's make a difference together by bringing a little love and cheer. 
Collecting Donations

Currently, we have until Dec. 20th, 2013, in order to collect the donations needed to make this a day that the patients will remember. Please consider helping me bring a little joy into the life of each patient that will receive the gifts on Christmas 2013. This Christmas can be brighter and full of hope, by giving the patient something special that they can use every day.  

Care Packages
Other ways you can help is gathering up shoe boxes wrapped and marked male or female. These shoe boxes should be full of personal stuff like deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrush, powder, shaving supplies, brush or comb, body lotion, perfume or cologne, or other items they may need. If you can help, please contact me by email for more information about this project. 

Contact Me for Address

The Laugh at Cancer Support Community is sponsoring this project, but we are not a non-profit. We just care about those who are stuck in a nursing home or hospital during Christmas time and would like the patients to know someone does care. Thank you to all who will be taking the time help with this Blankets of Hope project. Together we can make a difference!
 

My Email 

 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Park City Baptist Church

I would like to introduce you to my church Park City Baptist Church. I started going to this church when I was young until I became an adult. I began attending another church near where I live, but it never really felt like home to me.

Once in awhile, I would visit and I would feel like I was at home again. I moved down the road from the Church and now I go whenever I can. I deal with being sick a lot, but I so thankful for the fellowship I have with the members of the church.

So, feel free to stop by and say hi!  Additionally, meet some wonderful people who also attend our church. We are located at 7410 Park City Dr. On the Westside of Jacksonville, Florida.

We are a small yet loving church that welcomes everyone with open arms and hearts. We have sermons during Sunday morning services and bible studies (open discussion) Sunday night, as well as Wednesday night. We are Bible based church, who helps the community around us with our events and fellowship.

Check out our website for more information and a map.

We also have a Spanish ministry called Park City Ministries. Take a moment to look on the website for their location and a map.

To learn more about our church, please visit our website.

Follow us on twitter @parkcitybaptist

Follow us on tumblr

Follow us on Facebook

Follow our blog and listen to different sermons

Friday, November 15, 2013

Our Wedding Day, Despite the Many Setbacks

My seventh wedding anniversary is coming up Nov. 30th.
I wanted to share our wedding story with you that I wrote four years ago.
 
Today, makes my fourth wedding anniversary and I can't help but think about the day I finally decided to say I do. It was an ordinary day in Jacksonville, FL., but it was a day that would change my life in many ways. We have had ups and downs since then like every couple, but we have two rules that we always honor. We never let the sun go down on our anger and we call a truce when we cannot reach a conclusion we both agree on.

November 30th 2006 was my official wedding day, but it was a day that I will truly never forget. I began the day excited about our wedding plans and I worked hard to make sure everything was perfect. I didn't want a big wedding, so I invited only my and his family to the wedding. Suddenly, I got a call that our Pastor was unable to marry us, due to being put in the hospital. I almost gave up on getting married that day, but my landlord was a notary and she performed the ceremony right in her office.

My husband and I were married, yet my sister-in-law decided to throw us an official wedding with the frills and all. I explained that I was already officially married and it did no good, because she was not taking no for an answer. We decided to get dressed in Jean and nice t-shirts, since I don't really care for dresses. I decided to make one demand, which was to have the ceremony in my granddad's front yard and I wanted him to give me away.

(Read More)

PS: We love everyone for making our day special, despite the setbacks we endured. 


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Donate Your Unused Gift Cards

Do you ever have unwanted gift cards after the holiday season has passed? If so, think about how many friends and family will be giving out gift cards you may not. Additionally, you may not be able to use each gift card for many different reasons, which means the gift card will expire and become worthless. During the upcoming holiday season, think about how you can change someone's life using the very gift card that you may not use or want. Many different websites will allow you to resell the gift card to them and offer you cash back for each unused card.

However, here is another idea to ponder… how about donating your cards to the military, patients in the hospital (with cancer or other illnesses), or to the less fortunate in your community? During this recession, many families may not have food or presents for Christmas. Therefore, why not take your unwanted gift cards or even gifts order to donate them to others, who will enjoy knowing that you are thinking of them. These families will enjoy the fact that you are thinking about them during this holiday season.

(Read More)

Friday, October 25, 2013

My Son is Moving!!!

My Children and Me
 
 
My son DJ has been a constant jewel in my life, but he is about to set off on an adventure with his father and step-mother. I am sad but happy that he leaving to a whole new town. He will be far away from me and I will miss him so much, yet I know that his father and step-mother will love and care for him. 

Thankfully, he will be able to meet new people and enjoy going to a new school where he can make friends. DJ will also be able to find new adventures to enjoy, as he grows into a little man. I will get to see him at designated times, but it will be time well spent making new memories. We will use Skype, cell phone, and Facebook to stay in touch with each other. I pray that his father, step-mother, and DJ will make it to their destination safely. I love him and I hope he explores all possibilities that God sets in front of him.

PS: A special thank you goes out to him step-mom for loving and caring for him, as I would. Thank you for being there for both my children and thank you for being such a wonder second mother. You are the best!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Exciting New Changes are Coming to SweetAroma4U

Welcome to SweetAromas4u.com! We have an array of homemade, yet one-a-kind products that will captivate and tantalize your senses. Feel free to look around our website and check out the many different homemade products we make. SweetAromas4u.com is a family owned business that was started by Serena Gibson, who is a Certified Aromatherapist. All of our products are eco-friendly and priced to fit your families budget.

Products available:

Homemade Candles

Candle Warmers

Bath and Body Products

Aromatherapy Products

Colorful Beauty Cosmetics

Mrs. Gibson makes customize holistic aromatherapy products which may help you alleviate many different types of ailments. Aromatherapy can help with medical issues like: pain, stress, insomnia, and detoxification. The aromatherapy can help an upset stomach, memory, PMS, and water retention. Additionally, aromatherapy can also help lighten your mood or bring out your romantic side. All customized aromatherapy products are made upon customers request.

Check out our catalogs and brochures that are available on our website. When you decide what kind of products you like, please visit our Facebook page to meet Mrs. Gibson. She is offering her creative products and special orders through her Facebook page. Additionally, she is displaying her new creations through her Facebook page. Therefore, take a moment to join her page and get to know Mrs. Gibson. You may also speak with Mrs. Gibson live or schedule a one-to-one meeting with via Skype at serena.sweetaromas4u.