Saturday, January 25, 2014

Eli and fellow St. Jude patient Makenzey. This is Eli's car.
As I was rushing back and forth in and out of the house unloading the car this evening, Eli stepped out in front of me to slow me down, then leaned into me with his version of a hug. “Mommy, I had a fun day today,” he said, then moved on to going through his goodies from the day. He did have a fun day, really did. I wish we could have met each of you that were able to come, and to those that helped, but it was a phenomenal crowd. I hope that you all had a positive experience and enjoyed participating. There were many precious moments from the event. I am hesitant to try to name some because I know I will forget something, but there were two little boys that were so sweet. I can’t help but make special note of the kids. The boys were not together, this was two separate times. But, each had brought a hot wheels mustang to give to him. The cars were loose, not new, so I am going to assume they were from their own personal toy box. How beautiful is that. He kept those in his pocket the rest of the afternoon, not because of the significance that I just pointed out, but because he is a little boy like them and he carries hot wheels around. He almost always has one in his hand or pocket or somewhere close, at least. I don’t know who they were, and they were as talkative as Eli, so neither one hung around. They each had a mission to give something from them to him, then they moved on. We are really, honestly humbled that so many people pulled together to
An early favorite, but as the day continued, he struggled to pick.
make it happen, and so many came out to support it in all ways. Such a beautiful mix of those that love him, and those that just want to do good for a little boy who has been dealt a bad hand. I hope that we can grow it into a regular event for the community, and that we get another chance to meet more of you. But, as Eli requested, “next time can we do it when it is warmer.” Of course, I am so grateful to all of you for acting on such short notice, and coming out when it was cold. Time is one of our many enemies right now as we do not know if the chemo treatment is even doing anything at this time, so everything we want to do is under the “better now than later” rule. So, thank you for reacting, and making it great. Joseph can correct me, but I think we made over  $4000 for St. Jude just at today’s event, and the online effort is over $4,000. So, that is well over enough to donate and have a plaque placed on the wall at St. Jude. We
The winner of Eli's Choice: 2013 Boss 302 in Grabber Blue.
will all be so proud to hunt for Eli’s name on the wall when we are there. And, I hope that none of you know the heartfelt appreciation for donations toward the effort of treating and curing pediatric cancer. If you are ever in or near Memphis, I hope you take the opportunity to tour the hospital. People are sometimes afraid to go because it might be sad or scary. But, they do a great job of making it welcoming. It is small, and yes, you will see bald heads, but it is a blessing to experience - as a visitor. As far as the car count today, Joseph is going to give his best guess, but they were pretty sure it was close to 400. It was a sea of cars, and so cool when they were coming down the road, preparing to turn into the parking lot. It was also fun when they left! And, I mean that in a nice way. You could’t help but stop your conversation and listen and look at what was roaring off. Eli’s car got a lot of attention, too, as it should! Thanks again to McClary Ford and McClary Tire for providing the Shelby for Eli to drive up in. And, we collected a complete
Joseph Scott giving Eli his membership into the LCMC
truckload of laundry detergent, so we appreciate Champion Chevrolet for providing the truck and for keeping up with the detergent until I can get to it. We will have more opportunities to give for that effort, so watch for those details. I’m going to miss mentioning some businesses that I know helped behind the scenes but I don’t know who they are. Hopefully, Joseph or Lawrence can chime in with any that need to be mentioned. I know that Suzanne’s Bakery made the cool Eli cake; Micah Clem of M. Clem Media was there doing some videography for us; Abernathy’s Awards provided Eli’s plaque that he gave; Allied Photocopy and Kelly Cain for the t-shirts and design. Thank you to the girl scouts and beta club members for helping with whatever came up. And, it was especially nice of Mr. Pruitt and Mr. Blackstock to come from Augusta. Of course, the Limestone County Mustang Club and the surrounding clubs. Eli picked his winner for the Eli's Choice award - A 2013 Grabber Blue Mustang Boss 302. He doesn't have as great of an appreciation for the older cars as we do, so he likes the newer ones and he said he liked blue with black stripes. The owner, Semekia Swett-Harding, drove in with the Music City Mustang Club from Nashville and she let him sit in the driver's seat, which we have been told she does not ever do. He had a couple of other favorites: the Ford GT he really liked, and there was a navy blue GT convertible on the front row, and he liked the red Roush cars, and the yellow Hot Wheels with the flames under the hood. He had fun looking at the toys associated with the cars, like the smurfs, the minions, the hot wheels, and the miniature versions of the cars. There were several corvettes that he liked, but we didn't make it all the way around. Caleb mostly enjoyed looking at the engines. He is our mechanic and he just couldn't understand why everybody didn't have their hoods up. I really hope that you all had fun getting together, too.

The kids were worn out, cranky and chilled through by the time it was over and were ready to be home. So, we had warm leftover pizza from the day, took warm showers, vegged with skylanders, and played car show and transformers. What a wonderful gift for our family today. Thank you.
Eli tore through all the hot wheels from the day for is car show.

Eli and Caleb have played car show tonight…. of course, Caleb is “crashing” Eli’s Mustang Club with various hot wheels makes. Such a stinker. He said last week, “When they do my car show, would you tell them that I want it to be about camaros.” He loved the corvettes and camaros that were there today. He felt like they were there for him.

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