hi my angel,

WOW March is already flying by down here!! It feels like I was just in San Francisco and I definitely miss that traveling and I can’t wait for my next trip to Alabama to visit Kylie! It felt like everything became so busy once we got home from Ava’s Kitchen event and it has been great but also caused me to have to take a step back, not being able to blog each week. I miss it a ton but I’m also searching for good content to write about. I want each post to come from my heart and touch others and for me, I don’t think it can be forced out. I’m for sure learning to have grace for myself with this blog of mine. Grace is always a struggle for me and I know I need the practice, and God sure is giving me that practice here and now. I want to do a whole post on grace so I’m praying God puts the right words on my heart.

I got a very special opportunity to speak to a group of 6th grade girls this week about you and share your story. It was soooo fun and it went really well!! I am so proud of you and it blows me away that I get the honor to share your story with others and impact their lives with the difference you are continuing to make! I brought mini red velvet Sprinkles cupcakes to share with them as a little touch of you. They even came to stuff JoyJars the following evening and it was so fun to get to stuff some of your special jars with these girls and see them get to do exactly what you started.

I feel like I have so much to fill you in on girlie! I can’t believe our 6th annual Gala is just a week away. We are over 700 people Jess! That is absolutely crazy and amazing and just all around WOW. We are back at the Disneyland Hotel and I am so excited to see how it all goes this year with so many more people. We have had incredibly gracious hearts this year as well who have given us the opportunity and ability to treat 50 courageous families for the night! We have so many surprises in store for everyone and Donna has done the best job at weaving in your story to everything that night.

You’d be soooooo jealous what momma and I got to do this past week as well…we picked out the Gala puppy!!! This year we have the most precious and spunky chocolate lab. I’ve never been able to pick out the puppy before and it was so fun to meet all these sweet puppies 🙂 so from now until gala, I’ve got a new roomie!

Now, something SUPER exciting that I get to tell you about…YOUR EIGHTEENTH BIRTHDAY PLANS. First, I can’t believe you’ll be eighteen – holy cow!!! We’ve got three super exciting ways to celebrate YOU Jess. First, we are going to open the JoyFactory for 18 hours on your actual birthday, April 8. From bright and early 6 am until midnight, we are inviting the community in and our goal is to stuff 1,800 special JoyJars. Momma, daddy, JT, and I came up with a special jar filled with 18 of your favorite things even – all things you loved to put in your JoyJars. I am so excited that we get the opportunity to do this because everyone always wants to stuff one of your JoyJars!!! It’ll be super fun with music and sweets and JOY all around 🙂

We are also going to be launching another limited edition t-shirt! Two actually!! These will be on sale for 18 days and they were designed by the incredible Brooke Gudenau of Bevy & Brine. I picked two words that completely embody you: Joy and Brave. I love these words and the designs and I think everyone else will too!!

Finally, Lucas Oil Racing, came up with a very fun challenge for everyone! They are calling it #WhipCancerWithJOY. Their idea is to have people put a whipped cream pie in their face, donate money, and then challenge others to do the same! It’s similar in set up to the ALS ice bucket challenge. I know you would have LOVED this and I can only imagine you, JT, and I chasing each other around trying to smash whip cream pies in each other’s faces!!! I’m for sure going to have to smash one in JT’s face and I can’t wait!

So that is what the beginning of April will look like for us (and for YOU)! Thank you for changing my life Jessie, and for giving me a reason and a purpose to impact others with your story.

xoxoxo,

your big sis