blogging / Make A Difference / Pink Hat Missions / Sockvember / Volunteering / writing

Making A Difference in Westland and elsewhere

It is 4:14 PM

Been a tough couple of weeks trying to get this entry written. I sit down at the desk and my words just vanish…not a good thing and especially not during Sockvember!! But we’re here and we are writing right now!
The weather here in SE Michigan has been just outstanding,just beautiful and perfect…last week was between 74 and 80 degrees! (yes,we hit 80 in November!). While this week has gone down a bit,its still quite sunny and warm in the early afternoons. My job is getting our live Christmas trees in on Thursday,last year at this time,we had snow on the ground and it was COLD!!! This year,its shorts and a long sleeve shirt for the unload.
Even when we get rain,its often fast moving storms and then its cool and clear but we know the weather can’t stay this way,winter is coming…my early warning center in Minot,North Dakota (hi Michelle and Brad!!) have already mentioned they have had snow,not much but still snow is snow,right?
Still,it will be a little strange unloading Christmas trees in the mid-50s….
While Sockvember is going on now,the end of October found my fellow Musketeer Justin and I back at another volunteer project,this time helping a family of a soldier wounded in combat. This project was once again through our job and was in Westland,the city next to where I live at.
Now the weather for this project was cold and windy,no bright warm sunshine on this day!

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Justin and I once again were the only people who signed up to help from our store which was a little disappointing since Justin had put up a sign-up sheet. Our third Musketeer,Darryl,had a family engagement that was important for him to attend,hopefully he’ll rejoin us for our next project.
We got there around 9 am and met up with about 15-16 other volunteers including our DM Jeff Watson who also worked on our Detroit project.
The house,while small,needed a lot of work…a new shower was installed,the kitchen was repainted and the front yard needed some fresh landscaping. Justin and I helped out clearing debris from the shower. This was a bit tough as the area was very small and we had to work around the painters in the kitchen.

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Then we made a run back to our store for some supplies that we needed. After we got back,our team went to work on the landscaping. We cleared a couple of bigger shrubs and then built a 2 layered retaining wall. While the dad was making lunch for us,the mom made a trip to the store while the two sons chipped in some help in laying down fresh dirt and mulch.
We thought it was pretty cool that the parents had their boys stay home not only to help but to see how important it is to give back when you can.
This family really deserved the help we were able to give them and I am glad we were part of the effort.

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Sockvember is perking along at a great pace. As of 14 November,folks have donated 285 pairs of socks to the cause. So touched and amazed by all the love and willingness to help me on this drive to collect socks. My co-workers have started to contribute as well,my work made fliers and provided a little box for folks to donate their socks.
Also,another co-worker got a family for our store to adopt this Christmas season and set up a Giving Tree. She made paper ornaments and hung them on the tree,these were for clothes plus she set up 2 large containers so folks can also donate food as well. The cheetah and I donated several cans of soup plus we took a ornament for a four year old little girl.
Since I have no kids,I asked our family friend Cheryl if she could help out in shopping for this little one,she agreed and we went shopping at Kohl’s. The store was pretty busy but we found a cute little fleece sweater and pants to buy. It felt great to once again to contribute to someone else.
This family has been through hell….three small girls being raised by their grandparents as the father is in prison and the mother overdosed on narcotics and died. You can only imagine how hard the path these girls have to travel in the future,to be able to help them have a Christmas is a real blessing.
And one more nice story to cap the week…last Sunday Sue called me up and said she was taking me out for a chicken dinner at the local Cracker Barrel. So we ventured down to the Cracker Barrel just in time for the massive dinner rush,we were put on the waiting list and looked at the Christmas items that were put on display. Soon our name was called and we went in for dinner.
The dining room was packed with people,many folks coming in from local church services from around the area. As we chatted about various subjects,our waitress came over and gave our bill…then Sue asked her to get closer and said she wanted to buy the couple’s meal who were sitting next to us. It was a nice looking couple around our age who looked like they had just attended church.
The waitress was a little surprised and said “Really??” Yep….Sue got their bill and paid it while they were eating. She wanted it kept quiet but the couple found out when the husband asked for the bill and was told Sue had taken care of it. They were so grateful and shook her hand and said “Thank you” many times. Making someone’s life a little brighter,so easy to do…you just have to WANT to do it.

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I love history as many of you know. Going to museums and art galleries as well as battlefields is something I enjoy very much. In all my years of living in my town,I had never been to our Historical Museum. The building is a small schoolhouse and doesn’t look very impressive in the slightest. No one I know had ever been inside to see a exhibit so when our local community newsletter talked about a new exhibit on old toys,I asked my friend Sue if she would like to go see it. I said we would be there for maybe 20 minutes,I mean,how much history can a small one room museum actually hold?
Turns out,quite a bit!! The room is much bigger then it looks from the outside. While admission is free,they have a donation box in which you can slip in a couple a dollars. The museum only has one paid employee,the museum’s director,the rest are volunteers. Sue and I walked and donated our fee and looked at the different old toys.

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The layout was charming with a large dollhouse and a full Lionel train as well. While Sue and the volunteer started talking about the area’s history,I looked at the old Sear’s ads on the wall. The volunteer said we had made our visit just in time as the museum closes for the winter because there isn’t enough traffic to keep it open.
It will reopen in the spring and the new exhibit will most likely be on the Civil War. Sue and I will be taking a peek come then and I’ll post a blog about it.

Well that is all for now,I have been sort of blocked as of late in putting entries down and since its Sockvember,not a good time for this to happen.
But I will try and get it going a little quicker. In my next entry,I will chronicle the major home repair projects I am doing,have a bad leak in the upstairs bathroom that needs to be addressed ASAP.
I also have met a new walking partner I just recently met. It is a bit of a surreal experience to be sure of….

 

It you want to help me in Sockvember,you can send your socks to:

 

Michael Sullivan
45249 Lemont Road
Canton,Michigan
48187

 

If you are on Twitter,you can follow me @Jinzo_2400

 

Shout outs:

 

Store 2703- Thank you for your very giving spirit in Sockvember
Justin W – Find us another project!!
Trish – Thank you for the socks!!
Brian and Brenda – Thank you for the socks!!
Lamar – Thank you for the socks!!
Latasha – Thank you for adopting that family in need.
Smooth Jon Jones – Awesome job in saving a life,the right man at the right time!! Proud of you!
Romey – Glad you are in your new place!! When is the first wrestling event at the house??
Sue E. – International Festival next weekend!!
King Tut – I hear Dom Toretto’s crew needs a new driver!!
Cheryl – enjoyed the recital today and we’ll see you for the Christmas show.
Ivy – Thank you for your gift
Cebella’s Pizza and Kohana Coffee – thank you for your help for Sockvember!
 

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4 thoughts on “Making A Difference in Westland and elsewhere

    • I agree,while it doesn’t heal in my case,it does honor Lori and I do enjoy it very much. Sockvember is my biggest Pink Hat Mission I have yet undertaken,we have raised over 500 pairs of socks to donate to the church we went to…

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