Hope Wissel

Bringing Hope and A Smile to a Child

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June was the start of a NEW ThirtyOne year.  Every year, I reflect on the past year – goals made and accomplished as well as those where I missed the mark.  Anyone who knows me, knows that I want to make a difference in the lives of others.

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My passion and my purpose will come together this year in a way I never thought possible.    I am on a mission of:

Bringing hope and a smile to children, reminding them they are special and worthy

Yes, the giving campaigns (chemo comfort bags, etc) will continue.  In addition, I will be donating 10% of my sales every month to a local organization that works with children.  Children who are hurting because of no fault of their own ensuring that for even a moment they know that someone cares.

In July, it will be “Lunch Break” whose mission is:

to alleviate hunger and lead those we serve to self-sufficiency and healthier lifestyles.  We serve everyone, with compassion and dignity.

I had the opportunity to meet with their staff last week and was impressed with their programs and their commitment.  This groups humble beginnings in Red Bank has grown in safe haven for those in need.  I saw smiles on the faces of children. I saw women feeling better about themselves.  I saw them making a difference in the lives of families who are struggling.

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Last year, we provide 31 children with THERMAL LUNCH TOTES filled with healthy snacks. The totes also contained a note of encouragement for mom as well as some inexpensive lunch ideas.  Let’s be honest, the FREE lunch program doesn’t always have kid friendly foods. No hate mail PLEASE because I know that there are some places that have great meals but let’s be honest, not all of them do.

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This year for $20, you can sponsor a thermal tote for a child in need. If you want to help BUT you don’t have $20, donate what you can – $1, $2, $5, or $10. Maybe finances are tight BUT you know a business that may want to help, GREAT! Let me know or forward this information to them. I will supply a list of business sponsors in every thermal tote along with blogging about them – FREE advertising for helping out a great cause. Where else could they get FREE advertising for $20 or $40?

Won’t you help to make a difference today? You can fill out the form below or contact me directly. I will be happy to invoice you. Let’s bring a smile to the face of as many children as we can this school year. The deadline is July 18th!

Have ThirtyOne-derful day!

Hope Wissel

Memories of My Buddy

Elsie

It has been 17 years since I heard your voice.  Seventeen years since I smelled snickerdoodles baking in the kitchen.  Mine just never taste as good as yours did.  Seventeen years since we spent hours talking. Elsie Marie Weston, my mom’s baby sister, lost her battle with breast cancer 17 years ago and will forever be known as one of the strongest women I know.

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Elsie‘s battle began when she was about 18 years old with lumps which were always removed and were not cancerous. Until the life changing diagnosis in 1990.  Her first mastectomy in 1990. Her second reconstructive surgery 6 years later to replace a leaking implant.  That’s when they found it in her bones. She went through medication regimes, and chemotherapy. And through it all she fought.

Sure, Elsie was family but she was also my best friend. Growing up, Elsie was privilege to some of my deepest secrets. I went from being the pesty niece she was forced to babysit to her buddy as we partied at the Headliner during our years working in Neptune Township. We both went to Atlantic City to open the Claridge Casino. We weathered hurricanes, blizzards and life itself. Elsie was there when Belinda was born – she even cut the cord before heading out to attend a wedding.

Elsie and Belinda were buddies. She was there to help. When I was in detox and rehab, she made sure life remained as normal for Belinda. I remember being in detox, not being able to have visitors – she helped Belinda make a sign and they stood outside the hospital window to show their support. When I came home from rehab, Elsie took us in when we were homeless.

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Elsie taught me that dreams can and do come true – NEVER GIVE UP.  She fulfilled hers when she opened Small Wonders, a gift shop in Ocean Grove.  When the cancer spread, to Elsie’s eyes, things got a little tougher but she was  determined to work every day in her store. We all helped – Belinda learned how to work the register and run credit cards at the ripe old age of 10.

Belinda put together one of her famous surprise parties for Elsie’s 50th birthday. Elsie was mad but she never stayed mad for long at Belinda. That would be her last birthday with us. On May 23rd, Elsie was admitted into the hospital – she had lost 95% of her eyesight to cancer and had given up her will to live. Seven days later she became another Weston Angel – joining her parents in heaven.

She left behind a legacy…. She was a fighter. She was loving & kind. She was Belinda’s Buddy! A day doesn’t go by that I don’t think about her. When there is a crisis or we are in the hospital, a sense of calm comes over me and I know that everything will be okay – see all my Weston angels are always with me – Mom-mom, Pop-pop, Elsie and Edythe.

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Elsie, I miss you and I am sure that I didn’t tell you enough how much I loved you. Cherish the moments today – the good, the bad and the ugly for life is precious.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day.

Hope Wissel

Giving Back in 2016 – Chemo Comfort Bags

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When I began my journey with Thirty One in 2011, my goal was to help others.  Sometimes it was a fundraising project, or a donation to an event or giving to those who were in need.  It didn’t matter whether it was a small goal or a HUGE goal, I wanted to help.  As a result, I have been able to donate to various causes that are near and dear to my heart.

No, I am not telling you all of this to toot my own horn. I NEVER do any of these projects without the help of my AMAZING customers, hostesses, family and friends. Individuals who believe in the cause, or just want to help. Okay, can you guess where this is leading…. YOU GOT IT!

At the request of my customers but also at the nudging from a few friends concerning the need – I am looking for sponsors for Chemo Comfort Bags…

chemo comfort bag sample

The $35 sponsorship will pay for the actual bag and I will use 100% of my commission to fill them with a variety of things like a blanket/scarf, notepad, pen, bottle of water, lotion, warm socks, chap stick and crossword puzzle book.  Donations will be distributed to local cancer care centers to bring a smile to the face of those who are fighting this dreadful disease.

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Last year, we delivered 31 bags to Ocean Medical Center in Brick.  This year by January 20th, my goal is 50.  I know this is a HUGE jump but I am confident that we are up for the challenge.  The bags will arrive in the beginning of February so that I can stuff them and deliver them around Valentine’s Day.

So, who is with me? For $35 you can bring a smile to someone who is fighting the cancer battle. This project is near and dear to my heart. It is a tribute to my Weston angels – Edythe, Elsie and Pop-pop – who all had cancer.

You can sponsor a bag in memory of someone, in honor of someone or just anonymously. Payments can be made via check or through Paypal at hopesgiftcloset@@comcast.net as a friend/family.  I can also accept credit card payments directly.

Won’t you help to make a difference today?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

 

Hope Wissel

Give a Thermal Tote to a Child in Need

back to school flyer

Today I want to CELEBRATE you!  Many of you have been a part of my “giving back” program this year.  We have done chemo comfort bags and zipper pouches for our soldiers.  We have raised money for Smiles for Trevor and Relay for Life and we have helped families.  When I began my journey with Thirty One, I wanted to make a difference in the lives women and families and you are helping me do it!

To date, the programs have been a success with the help of my AMAZING customers, hostesses, family and friends. Individuals who believe in the cause, or just want to help. Okay, can you guess where this is leading…. YOU GOT IT – a new month, a new project.

You have heard of the “Back to School” campaigns that provide kids with backpacks and school supplies, right? These programs help each child start off the school year on the right foot.

This year, I will be providing THERMAL LUNCH TOTES to children. I will be using my commission to fill the thermals with some healthy snacks along with tips on inexpensive ideas for a healthy lunch or snack.  I mean let’s be honest, the FREE lunch program doesn’t always have kid friendly foods. No hate mail PLEASE because I know that there are some places that have great meals but let’s be honest, not all of them do.

So, for $20, you can sponsor a thermal tote filled with healthy snacks for a child in need. If you want to help BUT you don’t have $20, donate what you can – $1, $2, $5, or $10. Finances are tight BUT you know a business that may want to help, GREAT! Let me know or forward this information to them. I will supply a list of business sponsors in every thermal tote along with blogging about them – FREE advertising for helping out a great cause. Where else could they get FREE advertising for $20 or $40?

Won’t you help to make a difference today?  You can fill out the form below or contact me directly. I will be happy to invoice you. Let’s bring a smile to the face of as many children as we can this school year.  The deadline is July 9th!

Have ThirtyOne-derful day!