Thursday, April 2, 2015

Light It Up Blue for Autism Awareness Blog Hop!

Hello and welcome to the Light It Up Blue For Autism Awareness Blog Hop!

I'm not lucky enough to be a parent yet, but I'm a big sister, a little sister, and aunt.  I've got a large family, and that means a lot of love.  That also means, I end up caring deeply about children, Autism has not touched by family as of yet; but it's touched some of my dear friends, and their children. 

For a short time after high school, I was lucky enough to get to teach dance, one of my favorite students was Ali.  Ali was a little ball of energy, still is only, she's not so little anymore! I developed a strong bond with her, and will always consider her mother, Carmen, one of the strongest women I know.  She's done everything for Ali, given her a love for dance and music (the girl's got moves), the opportunity to love animals, horses, dogs, I'm pretty sure Ali loves anything with 4 legs.  We had our ups and downs when it came to dance class, but ultimately, Ali showed me a whole new world and taught me patience I didn't know I had, and a love I will never forget.

 After completing just enough college to participate in the Walt Disney World College Program, I moved to Florida for 4 GLORIOUS months and became a Disney slave (if you know me, at all, you know this was the best time of my life).  During my program I worked at the Tomorrowland Indy Speedway (Speedwhat?), one of the full-time cast members was Aimee.  Now, I would love to say Aimee and I were best friends, but we weren't. She was, and still is, one of the kindest people I've ever met, she never treated me different because I was literally the youngest person working there (barely out of high school folks!) She is a kind, patient person.  She has two absolutely ADORABLE children, her youngest was diagnosed with Autism at the age of two.

Little Mr. Dom, has stolen my heart.  This kid, he's so cute.  Currently, Aimee and her husband, Kevin, are working on fundraising towards getting Dom a therapy dog!  He's had a huge amount of success with the dog that visits during his speech therapy sessions.  I've done a few small things to help how I can, on April 2nd I will be wearing a shirt that another of the Cleffi family's friends created to support their fundraising efforts, I've also been able to create a few sets of cards for Aimee, some to sell at a craft fair, and some for personal use.  

Please visit their fundraising link, if you can, donate a dollar or two, otherwise, just read a little bit about this amazing kid and imagine how much a parent must love their child to want so badly to give them everything they can to succeed in life, to say nothing negative about their struggles and to simply ask for help when they need it, sometimes from a perfect stranger, sometimes, from an old friend.  You can also follow Dom's Ninjas on Facebook.



Back to the Blog Hop!  We have so many fantastic sponsors that have shown their support for Autism Awareness and you can see the complete list here: Autism Awareness Blog Hop


  Please take a few minutes to look around at what these wonderful artists have created.  If you would like a chance to win a prize from one of these fabulous companies leave a comment on this blog, and any of the other blogs participating in today's hop! Winners will be chosen at random and will be announced on Monday April 6.

 Now here is the card I created for today's hop! 

The image is from the The Amy Doodle Stamp Company, puzzle pieces are used to represent Autism and blue is the color used to represent it.  Now what you can't really see it that my card isn't done in the traditional sense, normally, your crease would be at the top of the card, mine however, is different, not less.

I folded my card on the bottom, why? A few reasons, I wanted to be different.  Also, I wanted to use this adorable heart punch and I couldn't make it work any other way.  Sometimes, with Autism, it's different than what you would expect, things don't work the way you want, but in the end, if the child gets what they need, a dog, a horse, to dance, to see Mickey... what ever it may be, the hurdles are worth jumping to get to the end result.  

Aimee and Carmen, I love you both, I hope that when I am lucky enough to become a mother, I'm half as good as you are, because even then, I will be a wonderful mom.  Thank you for being an inspiration and for allowing me to be part of your children's lives, they truly are blessings.



75 comments:

  1. Beautiful card! Love your design! Thank you for joining this hop and for sharing your stories ♥♥

    ReplyDelete
  2. Very cute card! Thanks for sharing your story!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great card, love the colors, the puzzle pieces and the hearts. TFS.

    ReplyDelete
  4. What a beautiful blog post! Really touched my heart, you are so sweet! Your card is adorable, perfect for the hop!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Definitely was a labor of love!!

      Delete
  5. what a fun card! And your hearing your heart was precious!

    ReplyDelete
  6. What a lovely write up...it is very evident you are tuned in to special people! Great creation!!!


    ♥ Sue Kment

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Sue, I'm lucky to have such special people in my life!

      Delete
  7. Beautiful card ~ that sentiment says it all, Rachel!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The image and sentiment were definitely a perfect combo! Thanks Helen!

      Delete
  8. Super inspiring - that is what this visit to your blog today has been for me!! Love your card - love your energy and enthusiasm about helping others and I truly hope that dreams come true for Dom and that you will find that Love makes everything possible!!! Thank you for participating and supporting this hop!! I hope you have an EXTRA SPECIAL DAY!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Taunya! I get to meet little Dom in a week or so!! (We live across the country from each other) Which makes this post even more special to me.

      Delete
  9. Thank you for sharing your experience with us. Your card is cheerful!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I don't care if your card is different...I absolutely LOVE it!! Having the hearts sprinkling love over the entire image was a wonderful touch...BRILLIANT!! Thank you so very much for playing along in the LIUB blog hop and for sharing your story! I wish Ali and Dom all the best!! They are blessed to have a friend such as you in their lives.♥♥

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Carolyn! I'm planning on making a few more because it makes me happy! I love those kids, thank you for the well wishes for them!

      Delete
  11. Love that puzzle pieced LOVE on your great card!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lori, hop over to The Amy Doodle Stamp Company, she's graciously got it on her site for download free of charge!

      Delete
  12. a therapy dog is a GREAT idea! best of luck to them in their fund raising efforts. I love the hearts along the top and the one in love <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We're definitely working on getting him his dog! Dom's parent's and family have worked so hard fundraising! They're getting a donation from Disney even! I'm proud to call them my friends, and even more proud to do every little thing I'm able to help them!

      Delete
  13. Awesome card! Loving this hop! My baby boy (14-year-old, Jake) has Autism, so this is close to my heart!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope your Jake is doing well! Are you getting to show him how much love there is out here on this hop? Thanks for joining us!

      Delete
  14. Oh this is so super cute, love the fabulous design! My boss is really into show dogs and she has raised a few service dogs. These dogs are like $50,000 each, so I really hope they are able to get him one. Thanks for sharing. LIUB!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lucky they've only got to fundraise for about $16,000! They are working with some fantastic people! Every penny they fundraise gets him closer to an amazing "tool", friend, and support.

      Delete
  15. thanks for sharing your story
    and woooww you answer each comment you are so dilligent
    I never answer cause some people never come back after leave a comment
    also here is my comment for your sweet card
    I adore the red blue and yellow combo
    so vibrant
    and that LOVE sentiment is adorable colored too
    you made a sweet and beautiful card
    hugs,
    Monika
    (I love and proud to join this hop and hope you like to hop back to my card it is #155)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Monika! I'm a newbie to blogging, and this is my very first hop! This cause is so close to my heart. I feel like every comment deserves a response! Thank you for the sweet words! I'm working my way through the hop and have made it about 1/3 of the way through, I can't wait to see what you've done. Thank you for visiting Monika!

      Delete
  16. Thanks for sharing your stories...your card is wonderful!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I was delighted to find this blog hop in aid of Autism as our 8yo son has low spectrum autism. He is a wonderful boy, much loved by many. Your card is amazing! Thank you to all the sponsors for supporting this cause.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for visiting Anne! Give your boy a hug from me!

      Delete
  18. Beautiful card! I LOVE stamp. Thanks for sharing your story.
    Hugs and kisses;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank so much Eva, I'm glad you enjoyed it!

      Delete
  19. Lovely card. The coloured 'LOVE' image is a wonderful focal point of your card. Thanks for sharing your story. xx

    ReplyDelete
  20. Love your different gorgeous card! The hearts and stars are amazing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Becca! Hearts and starts make me happy!

      Delete
  21. What a beautiful card ! Different can be great !!
    Thank you for sharing your story with us, and for caring about autism !
    Happy Easter !

    ReplyDelete
  22. What a fun card and I love the puzzle image.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Thank you for sharing part of your life with us! :) Your card is fabulous--that sentiment is perfect! HUGS! :) Mynn xx

    ReplyDelete
  24. What a fun card and thanks for introducing Dom to us!!

    ReplyDelete
  25. Neat card. I have two children with autism. Thanks for supporting this great cause.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What a strong momma you must be! I hope your kids are doing well! Thank you for visiting!

      Delete
  26. Your story is fantastic and your card amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Beautiful card! Thanks for sharing your story.

    ReplyDelete
  28. I like the puzzle pieced LOVE. Very clever card.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is the most heartwarming free image I've ever been lucky enough to get!! Thanks Mary!

      Delete
  29. Sweet card!! Love the hearts!!

    ReplyDelete
  30. Wow, you are amazing and sweet. Love your card! :) Thank you for participating ♥

    ReplyDelete
  31. Beautiful story and wonderful card. Love how you explained abt the symbolism in it. Blessings to you for being a priceless friend to the ones that have crossed your path. You will be a fabulous mom!!!
    Thanks for participating in this important hop!
    <3 J

    jwoolbright at gmail dot com
    HerPeacefulGarden.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  32. Wonderful card, love the hearts and the stars.

    ReplyDelete
  33. I loved reading your blog post and your card is great too..... So clever how you made it to be different because different is good as well :)
    Jenny x

    ReplyDelete
  34. annnnnd I'm crying again :) Your post is wonderfully written. I love that your card is different - just because it's not what you've expected doesn't make it any less wonderful. Such a perfect metaphor. *sniffle* Thanks so much for joining in this blog hop that is making my heart sing :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aww thank you Jessi! I'm so sorry it took so long for me to respond!

      Delete