Party On Designs $570 Giveaway!

Posted on June 28th, 2012 by Kara
Comments 750

Party On! Designs Ultimate Birthday Party Package Giveaway! ONE WINNER — 10 Party Supply Vendors- $570 Value!

***THIS IS NOT A RANDOM DRAWING***

This prize will be given to the “Most Deserving” person in need of an AMAZING party. We know there are so many of you who for one reason or another may just need a break. We want to do that for you! You are mothers, grandmothers, daughters, step-parents, you name it. You do so much for those around you, and we want to reward you for your hard work and love you give to others. Tell us what makes you special, or tell us about someone special that you would like to throw a party for.

How to Win:

1. We ask that you kindly “LIKE” on Facebook all of the vendors who have made this giveaway possible:

Party On! Designs

Kara’s Party Ideas
Party Steals

Pretzels Pleaze

Sweet Threads Clothing

The Sweet Crush

Ten23 Designs

Tout Mon Amour

Baby Birdie Boutique

Prop Shop Boutique

2. Please leave a comment on this post before 11:59pm MDT on Saturday June 30th detailing what makes YOU or someone you know the most deserving person {with a US address} to receive this amazing package. Please include WHO the party would be thrown for.

3. We will select what we think are the top 10 most deserving stories and post them here on KPI on Sunday, July 1st. All entries will be verified {making sure the person liked all of the above Facebook pages}. The winning stories will be numbered 1-10, and voters will be allowed to leave a comment with their vote {number}. ONE VOTE PER PERSON…votes will also be verified. Voting will end at 11:59pm MDT on Tuesday JULY 3rd. The story with the most votes at 12:01am MDT on July 4th will be the winner.

*IMPORTANT- Please do not email us your stories, or facebook message them. They MUST be written on www.karaspartyideas.com in the comments section of this post in order to be considered.

Below are photos of some of the party supplies and personalized décor that will be provided for the winner.

Details of what the winner will receive:

1. Personalized handmade party supplies, including a banner, cupcake toppers, thank you tags, water bottle wraps, stickers and more. From Party On! Designs – $150 Value.

2. Additional party supplies to match the color scheme, including paper products, balloons, baking cups, paper straws, party favors and more.  From Party Steals – $100 value.

3. Two dozen chocolate covered pretzels and two dozen chocolate covered Oreos for a total of four dozen treats. They will even drizzle the colors to match your party! From Pretzels Pleaze – $100 value.

4. A beautiful, handmade and personalized party outfit to match the theme. From Sweet Threads Clothing – $50 value.

5. Two Necklace & Bracelets sets, which could be worn by the mother and the birthday girl, the hostess and the mom-to-be, the bride and maid of honor, or even given as “prizes” at the party! From The Sweet Crush – $50  value.

6. One full sheet of vinyl decals to match your party theme (polka dots, stars, etc). The sheet will have 20 – 30 decals on it. Use it to decorate a myriad of things at the party! From Ten23 Designs – $25 value.

7. Two daisy grass mats and two bottles of gorgeous fairy dust, shipped (for free) from Australia! From Tout Mon Amour – $35 value.

8. A custom headband to coordinate with the party theme, which could be worn by the guest of honor, the hostess, or could be used as a party “prize”. From  Baby Birdie Boutique – $20 value.

9. Custom-made party hat or crown. These are just amazing! From Prop Shop Boutique – $40 value.

Good luck to all, and we can’t wait to see the who wins!

So, once more….How to Enter to Win:

1. We ask that you kindly “LIKE” on Facebook all of the vendors who have made this giveaway possible:

Party On! Designs

Kara’s Party Ideas
Party Steals

Pretzels Pleaze

Sweet Threads Clothing

The Sweet Crush

Ten23 Designs

Tout Mon Amour

Baby Birdie Boutique

Prop Shop Boutique

2. Please leave a comment on this post before 11:59pm MDT on Friday June 27th detailing what makes YOU or someone you know the most deserving person {with a US address} to receive this amazing package. Please include WHO the party would be thrown for.

3. We will select what we think are the top 10 most deserving stories and post them here on KPI on Saturday, June 30th. All entries will be verified {making sure the person liked all the above Facebook pages}. The winning stories will be numbered 1-10, and voters will be allowed to leave a comment BELOW with their vote {number}. ONE VOTE PER PERSON…votes will also be verified. Voting will end at 11:59pm MDT on Tuesday JULY 3rd. The story with the most votes at 12:01am MDT on July 4th will be the winner.

*IMPORTANT- Please do not email us your stories, or facebook message them. They MUST be written on www.karaspartyideas.com in the comments section of this post in order to be considered.

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook. We hereby release Facebook of any liability.

**UPDATE**

HERE ARE THE FINALISTS!!

**FINALIST #10** VOTE IN COMMENT SECTION for #TEN if you want her to WIN – @Whitney Paddock on June 29, 2012 at 10:59 am said:

I believe my son Sammy is the most deserving of an AMAZING party! When Sammy was born April 24, 2009, after a pretty stress free pregnancy, the cord was wrapped around his neck three times. After the midwife and nurses took care of my little blue bundle, they realized that his skin had a strange purplish hue and his feet and arms were not the same size. Three hours after he was born, he was sent to the local Children’s Hospital for testing, while I had to stay behind until my iron counts went up. We were able to leave the NICU after the first night, but we stayed in the hospital for almost a week while they ran a series of tests on my precious baby, and while he stayed under the bili lights to lower his counts. He had blood work, several X-rays, and ultrasounds done to determine the severity of his limb abnormalities (one hand and forearm is smaller than the other, his left foot is much thicker and the toes much bigger than the right, he has several lumps of fatty tissue on his back and stomach, and one butt cheek is bigger than the other – definitely the cutest feature!) and the discoloration of his skin which covers a majority of his torso and most of his left leg. When we left the hospital, we had some idea as to what he could have. He was initially diagnosed with KTW Syndrome (I believe a few thousand people have this syndrome), then CMTC (about 250 people have this diagnosis). After a month, we came back for an MRI of his brain, which thankfully was normal. Over the past three years, my little man has endured numerous doctor’s visits, MRI’s, X-rays of his entire body, Ultrasounds, and many other tests. We have traveled to see specialists in Cincinnati, and all of his lab work and paperwork was sent to Boston Children’s hospital for review. As of August 2011, Samuel is officially diagnosed with CLOVES (for more information, visit clovessyndrome.org) which 90 people in the world have been diagnosed with. While he is a healthy, happy 3 year old, he recently had the 2nd toe of his left foot amputated due to its size and to help decrease the width of his foot. We will need to go in for further testing soon to see how the vascular anomaly on his chest is affecting his internal organs, blood flow, and especially his heart. For one reason or another, we have not had the opportunity to throw Sammy the big wonderful birthday party we feel he deserves! We want Sammy to have a big blow out for his 4th birthday – a celebration of him and the wonderful life and health he has! We are so lucky to have him in our family, thankful that he is healthy, and we won’t to show our love to him! We love you Samuel Connor!!!

**FINALIST #9** VOTE IN COMMENT SECTION for #NINE if you want her to WIN – @Bridgett Runyon on June 28, 2012 at 5:42 pm said:

I would like to win this awesome giveaway for my baby girl Mira’s 1st Birthday coming up in August. On August 11, 2010 I had a stillborn at 37 weeks to a baby girl named Maddyn Shaye. Losing a child is a mothers worst nightmare, a pain that no one should never have to endure. I will forever remember my sweet Maddyn & the joy she brought to me in the little time I had with her. She’s brought me joy that I can’t even describe & friendships from women across the country that I’ve met through “Faces of Loss, Faces of Hope”-an online support group. I’m forever thankful for my angel. Just 4 months after, I got pregnant again with what is now my little MIRAcle baby, Mira Shaye, born on August 10,2011- – Just one day short of what would have been Maddyn’s 1st birthday. Throughout my whole pregnancy & before I even found out I was having another girl, I referred to Mira as my “rainbow baby”. A rainbow baby is a baby that is born after any kind of pregnancy or infant loss. After having gone through the storm of losing a child, a new life brings with it a rainbow… So that is why I want to throw Mira a “rainbow” themed 1st birthday party.

**FINALIST #8** VOTE IN COMMENT SECTION for #EIGHT if you want her to WIN- Lydia on June 28, 2012 at 8:53 am said:

My story isn’t sad, or heart wrenching. My story is uplifiting and I want to celebrate all of the amazing things that have happened for my sweet Bella. We adopted Bella from Romania, after long bouts of in-vitro and egg donors, we needed to explore the idea of adoption. The orphanages over there are DEPLORABLE. We went through MONTHS and MONTHS of red tape in order to adopt her, and finally did. We got back stateside, and got a call from the adoption agency, stating that they had found Bella’s brother, Anthony, in another orphanage in Romania and knew we were interested in adopting him. We had only been home a few weeks, so we told the agency to give us a while to adjust to having Bella, and allow us to mull it over. After two weeks, we decided the best thing to do would be to adopt Anthony, as well. We called the agency and told them we were interested and were HEART BROKEN to find out that he had been adopted. We reveled in having our own child, FINALLY, and though we were hurt by not having her sibling there to raise with her, we still had our sweet Bella.
Fast forward 6 months. I get a phone call that I am floored by. The family that adopted Anthony is ELEVEN MILES FROM MY HOME. That’s where they LIVE. A true MIRACLE. I am sobbing happy tears as I tell my husband, and over the last year and a half, we have been able to raise Bella with her brother, Anthony and have them know eachother. We are SO blessed and SO happy to know that she has a true part of her that she can hang on to for the rest of her life.
My sweet Bella is deserving of an amazing, over the top, birthday party and I hope that I am able to give this to her by winning your package.

**FINALIST #7** VOTE IN COMMENT SECTION for #SEVEN if you want her to WIN- Michelle Jones on June 28, 2012 at 3:22 pm said:

I would Love to be able to have a chance to win this give away from my Sister Sheila she is a single Mom of two wonderful kids and she just currently lost her job. I just recently celebrated my daughters 4th birthday, and my Sister, her daughter and I with a few other people were sitting at a table. And her daughter said to her softly “Momma can my birthday be like this” She replied back “I don’t know, because I don’t have a lot of money” her daughter hugs her and says “it’s OK” as my Sister has tears in her eyes. It truly made me sad. later that day I told my husband, I wanted to throw Alyssa (my sister’s daughter) a party and explained what had happen. But as I start to think. I myself have two other kids who’s birthdays are coming up soon My daughter Madison who is turning 1 July 9th and my son J.J is turning 3 sept 4th. And I don’t have a lot of my money myself so I may not be able to give her the party she deserves. But when I seen this I just had to try it out. My niece Alyssa is Going to be 5 at the end of September and she is just the sweetest little girl who cares about others and what she can do for them before herself. She deserve to have a day that is just all about her, to make her feel special like a princess :) So please I would love to help my sister out be able to let her give her daughter a great Birthday!

**FINALIST #6** VOTE IN COMMENT SECTION for #SIX if you want her to WIN- Allanna on June 28, 2012 at 4:49 pm said:

I would love to throw a homecoming party for my husband! He is currently deployed overseas and has been gone all year. March 30th of this year I gave birth to our daughter. She is our first born and my husband was not able to come home for the birth. Needless to say, he has not met his daughter yet and won’t until she is nearly 7 months old. He has always wanted to be a father and was so patient waiting for me to be ready, and he truly sacrificed the most important day of our lives, and some of the sweetest moments of our daughters life, to serve our country and protect our freedoms.
I want to give him a homecoming party that he will never forget! He works so hard I think he truly deserves a celebration.
Thank you so much for hosting such a wonderful giveaway. It will really allow someone who otherwise couldn’t to have a special day.

**FINALIST #5** VOTE IN COMMENT SECTION for #FIVE if you want her to WIN- Desiree huling on June 28, 2012 at 10:40 pm said:

I would love to win this party for my little 4 year old brother that has been battling cancer (Leukemia) for 1 year. He would love to have a party…he is a strong little boy. If I can put a smile on his face for a couple hours that would make my day.My brother Dominick fights everyday to beat CANCERS BUTT!! My mother is a single mother and can not afford to throw him a lavish party. She had to quit her full time job to take care of my brother. This party would mean so much to us. Thanks again for the wonderful opportunity!!!!

**FINALIST #4** VOTE IN COMMENT SECTION for #FOUR if you want her to WIN- Missy Douthit on June 29, 2012 at 10:49 am said:

On May 15, 2009 after just 1 month of trying, we found out we were pregnant. We were over joyed and so excited to see what this bundle of joy would be like. On June 9th, 2009 just 3 short weeks later I felt like our life was turned upside down. My husband was in hotel management and had been expecting to get a raise….instead he was terminated with just 1 month of severance pay. He tried relentlessly to find a job…unfortunately it took over 16months for him to find one. During that time we found out that we were pregnant with a little girl, her name is Avonlea Marie. She joined our little family on January 14, 2010 and has forever changed my life. Since then we have been trying to dig out financially. We are now over $20,000 in debt from just paying to keep our bills paid and groceries in the refrigerator. We have been gradually working on paying down bills and things, my hubby finally found a position as a middle school teacher after he did a “Career Switcher” program. Unfortunately we have no extra $$$ (We are still $300 in the hole every month) so we don’t have the extra to splurge on things we would like.
This party pack would be amazing and a way that I feel like I could do something special for my daughter, the way she deserves. Thanks for such an amazing giveaway!!!

**FINALIST #3** VOTE IN COMMENT SECTION for #THREE if you want her to WIN- @lorna nickle on June 29, 2012 at 10:40 pm said:

Wow, skimming through some of those amazing stories; judges you have a tough decision to make! My name is Lorna and i am 21 years young, I would like to nominate my sister Ellen Marie Massey for winning your grand prize party. She is 14 turning 15 in September, she is my half sister and now my responsibility.
We share the same mother who is very ill mentally and physically. Her father is in the same boat add on top of that a drug addict. About 3 years ago they were all living together in North Carolina in a very unstable and abusive situation/environment. Food, health, and safety was nonexistent. At 11 years old, Ellen to get away from her abusive parents would run to friends houses where they would influence her to party, drink and do drugs. This was not a bright future for her and a very dark past.
Our mother decided to leave Ellen’s father to move in with a boyfriend. This relationship was not much better than the last and it ended up leaving Ellen homeless at 12 years old. The boyfriend did not like Ellen and made my mom discard her. Instead of actually kicking her to the curb my mom dropped Ellen off at a mental hospital and made her live there for two weeks until I could get time off from work and school to drive from Florida where I live to get her.
I was 19 years old taking on raising a troubled teenager, what was I thinking I am a teenager myself? She is my sister and I would do anything for her, I had to try. Within a month of Ellen in my care my mom decided to call law enforcement and tell them I have kidnapped her. So I can tell you it has been quite an adventure learning how law enforcement and the legal system work. It was worth it because as of December 1, 2011 I am now her legal guardian.
We both have been on an amazing journey together and it can only go up from here. She has had so much of her childhood taken away from her, I would love to be able to throw her a party to celebrate the fun and innocence that she deserves for her 15th birthday. Thank you for reading this and for the opportunity of a very special day!

**FINALIST #2** VOTE IN COMMENT SECTION for #TWO if you want her to WIN- Mandy on June 30, 2012 at 11:54 pm said:

I’m a mom of two special needs children…both on different levels of the Autism spectrum.Plus the mother of 2 year old twins.My oldest daughter was diagnosed with PDD/NOS and as you can imagine has had to sacrifice so much because of her disability and her brothers severe Autism dignosis.She misses out on alot of things other girls her age are doing and it honestly breaks my heart.She wants to take dance lessons…but the girls make fun of her because she is on a 7/8 year old grade level.And how do you explain to a 13 year old that we can’t attend a birthday party or family gathering because her brother will have a complete melt down because he is overwhelmed in crowds and mom doesn’t have any help because family just doesn’t want to deal with his disability?Her birthday is in August and i’ve been planning a party for her because she deserves to be a princess even if it’s for one day!She works so hard in school…makes honor roll…she deserves a break from our hectic life to have an awesome party!She is the sweetest,caring,most loving young girl and would absolutely love this!Thanks so much for the chance!
Mandy

**FINALIST #1** VOTE IN COMMENT SECTION for #ONE if you want her to WIN- Jessica moore on June 29, 2012 at 11:43 am said:

Our daughter will be a year old in October.

I’ve waited my whole life to be a mom, and early one morning in October 2011, I watched my miracle baby enter this world via emergency c-section. She was beautiful and healthy, and perfect in every way. My husband and I were instantly wrecked in love with her.

Four days later, we were ready to leave the hospital with our 8 lb little bundle. But before we could go, we had to first say goodbye to her birth mom. Selah is adopted… And the happiest and hardest moments of my life converged as I lifted this sweet baby to be kissed one last time by the woman who gave her life. Seconds later, we stood as a new family of three while we watched a yellow cab drive away with the most amazing & selfless woman inside, wiping away thousands of tears.

I love being a mommy to this little miracle. And my husband is the greatest father I’ve ever known. But financially, adopting has not been easy for us. We let go of any savings we had, and took on a very large personal loan to pay for the cost of the adoption when we were chosen to be the parents of this precious child. We have been denied for financial assistance from the government, and seven adoption grants that we have plead our case to. We long for the day to not be burdened by the looming cloud of financial hardship… But we will not allow it to take away from the joy that comes from raising this little girl. She is every bit of our happiness, and proof that the bond between a parent and child is not dependent upon a bloodline. We are so thankful to have her as our daughter.

With her first birthday coming up, this would be a HUGE blessing for our family. Winning this give-away would allow us to give our daughter the best first birthday, and official “welcome to the family” celebration that we have not been able to give her yet.

We want to follow Facebook regulations, so please vote for the winner in the comment field below. Leave a comment with your # of choice. One vote per person, please. xoxo

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750 thoughts on “Party On Designs $570 Giveaway!

Please feel free to ask questions or leave comments

  1. Jennifer Barnes

    Well, my story isn’t sad and it won’t make you tear up, but this party package would be an amazing thing for my almost five year old Abby Grace. (She will be 5 in October.) Now don’t take this the wrong way, but I don’t feel any of us, including my precious Abby and her sweet sister Emery, DESERVE anything. None of us do. The only thing that makes me complete is my relationship with my Savior, Jesus Christ. I try and teach this to my children, but fail so often. But how wonderful it is to know that Christ loves me anyway. He doesn’t give up on me. Again, I try and teach Abby and Emmy from God’s Word. I don’t go out and buy my girls things all the time. Honestly, besides clothes, I only buy them toys around their birthday and the holidays. I may buy them a knick-knack here and there, but not big items. Yes, grandparents buy them things, and they love it. But we don’t “go crazy” over buying things. This party would be great to give to Abby for her 5th b-day. We just moved into a new place, and we are excited about what God is going to do in our lives. I would be thrilled to throw her this party at our new place and invite her friends from church. She will have also started Pre-K in August, so maybe some of her new school friends could come. I would love to give this to her as a “gift from mommy and daddy.” She could look back and remember how fun her 5th birthday party was. Thank you for taking the time to read this. God bless you!

    Reply
  2. Denise Allen

    I hate to talk about myself but this is a good reason to because I could REALLY use this. I have 5 children 4 of which still at home. my youngest 2 (15) are twins and the girl has Bi-polar and the boy has Aspergers (whom I home school, and can’t leave). My daughter left her husband and her and her daughter moved in with us. I love having my grand daughter around all the time but it is alot of work because her mom is going to school so I take care of her everyday. I have had to quit my job due to pain, I have had major back problems had surgery on my spine had 3 discs in my neck fussed together with no releif and was just shortly diagnosed with fiberminalga. With me not working for the past year we have come close to losing our house, we lost our van, and had our sewer break. But even with all this I keep a cherry disposition, I am highly envolved in Scouting (Webelos leader, Roundtable staff, camp director, and Trainer) and will fill in anywhere I am needed. I adopted some land in my area for the scouts to go and clean up to learn how to keep our country clean. and I volenteer at a old house in a canyon close to my house to teach vistors about the area and the histroy.. Winning this package would put a huge smile on my face and would fit as to the fact that we have not been able to celebrate adult birthdays, holidays, or Aniverserys this past yr.

    Reply
  3. Melissa Wood

    Neely is her sweet name. My daughter turned nine this year and I was unable to give her a party. I have recently gone through a divorce and started over. Unfortunately this starting over period happened during her birthday month. I have been saving for her a surprise belated party little by little. She is such a great sprite and wise beyond her years to be only nine. All she wanted was for her and I too spend the night on trampoline together. (slept with one eye open and couldn’t move the next day) I know she would love to have her friends for a slumber party on trampoline. It would be great to have this set and surprise her one evening with all her friends there.

    Thanks… for the chance.

    Reply
  4. Sara

    My Birthday Celebration would be for my second daughter “Briana” she will be celebrating her 15′s teens…. I’m a busy mother of three and always prepare and give as gifts great birthday parties for others, like friends and family! I need help this time for my own daughter’s birthday party….Love all the GREAT VENDORS and KARAS PARTY IDEAS. Thank you for this great contest….XOXO, Sara

    Reply
  5. Angie Christensen

    I would love to win this amazing giveaway! After seven (long) years, I will finally be graduating college this year. When my oldest son was in Kindergarten, I decided to go back to school to become an elementary school teacher. After many years of struggling with homework, studying, and trying to be a wife, mom, and student…I am finally completing my goal. I would like to have a party not just for myself, but for the wonderful family members and friends who have helped me as a pursued my dream. My husband and children have been extremely kind and understanding. Many family members and friends have helped tend my children, read papers, and give needed encouragement. A fabulous party would be the perfect way to celebrate my accomplishment and for me to show appreciation.

    Reply
  6. Luz

    I would love this amazing opportunity for the most amazing little girl in the world, my daughter Mya!. She has changed my life forever. When she was born, it was such a struggle. I wasn’t financially ready and was in such a bad relationship. But, when she was born she gave me so much strength and courage. I am still amazed how something so tiny can change your whole life! She taught me inner strength and made me realize that WE deserve the best in life. Mya turned out to be the funniest, most strong willed, little diva (lol) a woman can ask for. I wasn’t ready for her when she came to be, but God was ready for me to be her mommy. She is so beautiful inside and out and God has truly blessed me with her. I had planned her whole first year that she would have a huge celebration for her first birthday. I mean after all, it was the first year of lots and lots of first. But, life had other plans for me. I went from working 2 jobs, to one and then to none. I was devastated! I felt like I had failed. So many people celebrate their child’s first year with a bang! But I couldn’t. Then Mya got sick. She got an awful respiratory infection that ultimately lead to Pneumonia. It was such an awful time in our lives.I felt the worst pain a Mother could feel. I am very grateful that we persevered and made it through that tough time but i’m so sad that I never got to celebrate her first year. She will be turning 5 in November and to this day I have always wanted to give her an amazing party because she is so deserving. I know everybody has their stories just as I do mine. I have read others comments and am just in awe of the amazing blessings we are all blessed with. Whoever gets this package is so deserving. My little girl means the world to me. Lord knows how much I want this for her. I would love to give her the party that I never could before. She deserves to celebrated with a grand event..lol. If we don’t get this package it’ll be sad but I am just happy I was able to share with you all the greatest blessing in my life. I know we are truly blessed and in the end, we have already won. We won each other.

    Thank You to all those who are making this possible and Good luck to all those who participated <3

    Reply
  7. Marguerite Miller

    My daughter will be getting married at the very end of Summer! She wants her bachelorette party to be a fun sugar themed event! After she gets married and they begin to plan to have a family, they will be eating healthy and not eating sugar and ice cream! So she has been saying that is what she wants for her send off into married life! What she will not be having any more!!

    After 3 cancer battles won…I am now facing my fourth! My daughter and her husband have been planning and paying for everything that has to do with the wedding! My medical bills are huge and we have no money to be able to help them pay for the wedding! They have been amazing at doing everything themselves! I would love to be able to plan her Bachelorette party or shower of her dreams!!

    After my first 2 cancer battles, I was able to return to work, but after the third battle and a stroke, I tried to work part time for another year and a half, and it was killing me! I had to stop working and lose my health insurance! I remained cancer free for a few years and then had kidney failure! They took me off of my chemotherapy and started dialysis, which I still have three times a week! But stopping my chemotherapy brought my cancer back!! Now I have to fight for my life and for my chemotherapy drugs that they want me to pay $2,000 a month for!

    Please help me win this awesome prize so I can do something amazing for my daughter before she gets married!! Thank you!

    Reply
  8. Jessica Clements

    I have been look for a theme for my baby girls 1st birthday and can’t find anything I like! I was thinking this would be great for her 1st birthday. I love bright colors. I want to go all out for her1st birthday and make it very special!!! Even if I don’t win it would be great to get some ideas from you.
    Thanks so much,
    Jessica

    Reply
  9. Tamara

    I want to enter this giveaway to throw a party for my Mother. Who I love with all my heart. She has been through so much and has still raised me to be a strong confident woman. Her first husband, my biological father, started abusing her on their wedding night. Scary thing to go through. She still has medical records from when he dislocated her elbow and the bruising on her legs and the sprained ankle from just one night. This was back in the mid 80s before there was really much cops did for domestic abuse. She tried to push through but life just kept her down. After two miscarriages the doctors told her not to get pregnant for at least 2 years for her body to heal. Two months later she found out she was pregnant with me. After a very difficult pregnancy, about 5 months of which was spent in bed, she had me just two days after her 23rd birthday. After I was born she got the strength and courage to leave him. We had to go into hiding, staying at family’s houses and never being alone until the divorce was over with. Not long after the divorce he was arrested for drugs and was found with a gun in the car, which is an automatic felony. He got 6 years in prison.
    Her struggle did not end there. Husband #2 was so laid back, the opposite of #1. But it didn’t take long for her to discover his alcoholism. After just 2 short years they were divorced.
    Several years later she met a friends friend and after 2 years of dating he became husband #3. He was supportive of her as a mother, if I couldn’t go somewhere with them then they just wouldn’t go. Cut to me growing up. As most kids do, I gave my parents a hard time, back talking, rolling my eyes. Granted I never really got into much trouble. I did however have a horrible track record with cars. It got to a point where he just stopped talking to me. And my mother had to hear all the complaints and she had to deal with all the stress. Even after I moved out, he got worse. Blaming her when things got moved. Switching from job to job, never staying anywhere longer than a couple years. Even taking jobs out of state. I started to see a change in my mother. A loss in her personality, her fire, her energy. His negativity was taking a toll on her. He became paranoid about the money and the bank accounts. Refusing to help me out while in college he started checking every penny. Mom used all her extra money she could save to help me out. Help me buy supplies (my degree was quite expensive for supplies) and to buy food when I needed it. I graduated 2 years ago and he still continued with the negativity. Even when I had to live at home briefly btwn college and my first job he and I didn’t speak. I couldn’t understand how my mom could get rid of #1 & #2 but she couldn’t see what #3 was doing to her. It was still abuse, it was just verbal this time. She finally filed for divorce last summer when we received a phone call informing us that he had a girlfriend up where his job was (3 hours from home). It took a year to finalize the divorce. His stubborn attitude that he made more money than she did and that entitled him to more of the assets. She had to fight and fight and fight just to get her fair share. He even tried to split up her dogs, which are like her grandkids. I was there with her that day, she even thought about it, I had to tell her to say no, that he didn’t want those dogs except to make her upset. She got the dogs, the house, and everything in the house. Just in the past year, especially the last few months, I’ve noticed my mother coming back. She is dancing and singing and being carefree again. I cried one day because I saw her laugh so freely.
    All the while, between husbands, during husbands, she was taking care of me. Even with them it has always been mom and me. I love her and we are so close. She lets me make mistakes but she also helps me when I need her. She is the perfect balance of friend and mother. I never want to disappoint her but I also know that if I make a decision that she will support me. In our private moments, the conversations between me and her, I see where I get my quirkiness from. My strength comes from her. My intelligence comes from her. And she gets her goofiness from me :p
    With everything that was going on with the divorce and everything that goes along with moving and a demanding job my mom’s birthday was glossed over this year. I take part of that blame, my best friend was getting married and I was just so busy. The Monday after her birthday (and mine) the divorce was final. All my mom asked for her birthday was for me to setup her DVD player so she could watch Breaking Dawn. She didn’t make a fuss and kept changing the subject from her birthday to helping me plan my wedding. After all the heartbreak and divorces my mother still fully supports me with my marriage.
    There isn’t much I can do for her myself because all my extra money is going into a wedding fund. And I would love to have a party to celebrate her. Her love of books, disco music, dancing, and having fun. A celebration of strength. A day just for her. Nobody else.

    Tamara, loving daughter.

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  10. Beth Santoro

    Like many young families just starting out, we have struggled to make ends meet. Our daughter Adele will be celebrating her first birthday next month. Throughout my pregnancy and Adele’s first year of life, my partner Scott was laid-off twice. He was forced to take an electrician job that involved many weeks away from home, and often feels as though he missed out on many of Adele’s precious moments as a baby. As a former preschool teacher, I was unable to return to work following her birth since the cost of childcare was so high. We decided that I would spend Adele’s first year at home. I’m also working part time as a nanny. Her wonderful dad works 6 days a week to provide for our family, still, we are wondering how we will pull together extra funds to throw Adele an amazing first birthday party in our back yard. We are eager to celebrate with our family and friends, but with student loan payments and daily living expenses only getting higher, we would truly appreciate some help. There are so many fun decorations that will take our party from a dollar-store budget to a custom “Pinterest worthy” celebration! Thanks for the opportunity!

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