I just got back from L.A. last week. I’ve been meaning to first and foremost write to THANK everyone who participated in the Mary Kay fundraiser and was able to come to celebrate my sister, Maritess’s birthday fundraiser concert. It has been a busy week with us going out-of-town to Los Angeles and having my boys on spring break. The trip was a blessed weekend so I thought to share it from beginning to end. I’ll try not making this too long. We left Friday evening and my family and I traveled with my cousin Erica, Cousin in law, Dave and my brother-in-law, Dana. I was so happy that they all were able to join us for this special weekend. Especially to hang out with Erica in the last month of her pregnancy. She is so cute pregnant. I’m so happy for her and Dave to start this new chapter in their lives. Can’t wait! Anyhow, we took off Friday evening. We just took our time, nice to not be in a rush. We arrived early morning on Saturday and the first thing I seen as I walked up into my sister’s kitchen is a poster board made by a good friend and sister in Christ, Rowena. She put together a collage with my website blogs and highlighted certain sentences. Just to see my writing up there. Words that the Holy Spirit gave me wisdom to write about. Which put me in tears. Beautifully made just for this occasion. This definitely set the tone for the weekend. Just an overjoyed feeling to be among loved ones, to celebrate life on a special weekend. When Jesus died for our sin and resurrected. No better time to celebrate and rejoice life. Just so thankful for the strong support system. It only makes me realize we don’t have to go through trials alone. When we reach out and give a pattern of blessings start.
We all enjoyed relaxing. The guys found their way to the PS3 and it was over. Erica and I did our usual, took pictures literally had a photo shoot as we played around with her new camera’s settings, ate and fell asleep. We are pretty infamous on taking kicking back to another level. Which was good because I wanted to save my strength for the big event. That evening, my mom had a grand opening for her new office and the launch of her new company. My cousin Ashley came in from San Diego with my other cousin, Marie and nephew, Soli. Later that evening we came back and started preparations for Easter Sunday, the women stayed up stuffing eggs as the men continued their PS3 marathon. We woke up early to attend an Easter service at Hollywood Bowl, which my niece, Alexis performed in the children’s choir. We came early to make sure we had good seats for everyone, my sister and mine’s 2 families, Ashley, Marie, Sol, Rowena my mom and her friend Edna. We had an early brunch picnic. The service was great and the pastor was really funny. Even grabbed my brother-in-law’s, Dana’s attention. It was a blessing to here that he felt wiped away from his sins that day. I told him forget just today our Father has done this for us for our lifetime ( ;
Afterwards, we took off and went back to my sister’s to set up, cleaned, got ready, hid Easter eggs (thank you Smasley I think we had good hiding spots). My sister went all out with a traditional Filipino food spread and deserts. She set everything up so beautifully. Her backyard patios were meant for entertaining as you will see in the photos below. Just an intimate setting. We started the party off with the Easter egg hunt for all the kiddies. The kids were going crazy. After we served food and the concert began. I knew of the 2 singers who were performing, which our close friend’s of my sister. Both who I’ve met and knew before, an amazing Christian artist, Shelly James and a pop/country artist, Coffey which has been adopted in our family since he came to join my family for the last Christmas ( ; As Erica and I started to eat Coffey came to tell me to come out to watch the performances. We were already glued to our seats and we actually had a good view from the TV room, but he insisted to trust him and come out with him. So we finally get up and follow Coffey and I come out to see a familiar face sitting there with her guitar. Than it dawned to me that this was Hope an artist, that I found a year ago on MySpace. She had a song, “The rain don’t last”, which touched me so deeply word to word when I first heard it. I had it on my MySpace profile for the longest. It was a song that really touched what I was going through and I fell in love with it and couldn’t stop listening to all of her music. Just all the lyrics in her music are very poetic and seriously can touch your soul. Even my sister felt so touched when she first heard her music and that particular song and even shared it with friends including Coffey. Well Coffey ended up knowing her, so this is how the surprise came to be. As Coffey introduced her he shared the story of how I found her and how that song touched me. I felt so blessed that she accepted to perform for my fundraiser concert. It just worked out that she wasn’t recording or touring. I was so emotional and was glad to share this moment with Erica. So we sat there touched and teary eyed as she opened with my song. I can’t even describe it. To experience a performance so close, she was literally sitting right across from us. She would look at me from time to time and I knew she felt what connection I made to this song. She was so graceful and she sang just behind her guitar.
After her performance I got to meet her. She is a very sweet and down to earth person. She just signed Atlantic Records. I know she’s going to be big. All of the artist that performed our upcoming artist which all continues to utilize their God-given talents to bless people. Also, they all donated their time and their CD’s to go towards my kidney fund. This was just the beginning of an amazing night. As the sun came down Shelly James and her husband duo team performed.. She came after a full day of performing. She opened with healing music which always creates true spiritual healing within. She also sang songs from her album and popular worship music with Coffey as he joined in later and to watch them perform together was very magical. It was just amazing and everyone was singing along as the night came in. You just felt the Presence of Our Lord fill that room or patio.
We ended the night with a prayer from my brother in law, Alex and a happy birthday wish to my sister, Maritess. My nieces best friend read poetry. Just showed how amazing my sister, Maritess is is. She can never fail to amaze me. Just to want to celebrate her birthday in honor of me. To ask for no gifts but instead she just asked for a donation to my kidney fund. This is just like my sister to put others before herself. She has always been there for me through it all. Believed in me and really guided me in my own spiritual life. She has this incredible gift of giving, always has. This weekend was just a reflection of who she is. She created an evening that first glorified our Lord and Savior and just showed how beautiful his Love and Sacrifice is. It was a great evening. I was able to meet more spiritual support system through new friends, hung out with my out-of-town family members and just enjoy Easter day through celebration.
I wanted to end this by thanking everyone who made this day happen. For the gift of giving through donations. Which I will acknowledged the names on my Maribel’s Kidney Foundation page. This event has made this foundation official. Yippee! We are now registered through the county court records and have the accounts set up. I am so excited because I have envisioned how this was going to overall become a non-profit organization that will help others in the same situation as I am in. This will help my current situation as promised with each fundraiser 10% will be donated towards other kidney related organizations and missionary fundraisers. Please visit: Maribel’s Kidney Foundation Page for all details on this fundraiser benefit relief information, the ending fundraiser totals, future fundraisers, where to donate info, etc..
Again, thank you, thank you, thank you, everyone for sharing this day. I am happy to even share it through this blog. I also would like to thank everyone again who purchased Mary Kay products. I just recently received the list of names from Lennie, you will be hearing from me soon. I am truly blessed for your giving. I am hoping I didn’t miss anything but feel free to view all the photos below. Also, as we established the online pay pal account you still have the opportunity to give to April’s fundraiser until the end of this month as we close it out. Click here for the pay pal link.
Thank you for allowing me to share this special weekend. Hope you had a Happy Easter weekend as well. God bless Always~