Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Goodbye to 2008

Well, here we are- about to say goodbye to 2008 and welcome in a brand new year- how exciting is that? I always love the start of a new year and all the promise it brings with it. I am feeling a little anxious though- I'm concerned about fundraising in particular. Every time one turns on the news or reads the paper, it is more bad economic news after another. However, that being said, there is still money out there and it is my job to find it. I do want to work on more events, not only to raise additional funds, but to supplement the grant money that we may not be getting. We're in the early stages of a great mothers day event, I will have more progress on that next week.

I was thinking these last couple of days about what I learned this year- I like to take a little time and reflect about what they year brought. I'm not sure how many new things I learned, but there was a lot of reinforcement about things that I already knew. I already knew that events are important fundraisers, but this year I got to experience firsthand just how great events can be. Even though our events are still small compared to what other chairities do, they were record amounts for us. For the rest of my life, I will remember what it felt like to stand and look at the hundreds of happy people enjoying our date auction at Gypsy Bar. I can't describe the feeling very well- it's pride, but its also a feeling of awe- of actually believing that dreams can come true- that you can work really hard, worry a lot and have a lot of tough times, but wonderful things can happen. It is similar to how I felt standing on centercourt at the Celtics game, but it was also a little different.

I'm really happy with the way things went for us this year. It wasn't perfect of course, I've made some mistakes and there are things that I want to improve upon for next year, but we are headed in a good direction. Expanding to work with the Department of Children/Families was our biggest achievement. Our elder care program has been successful. I was working on networking more this year and had some great results- need to do more next year. I've met some great people this year and I'm really happy to have them in my life. Of course, I've met the usual amount of twits and flakes and had some unpleasant experiences, along with one quite frightening one and I'm concerned about finances. But this year has been better than last year and I can announce that our trend that has been running for the last 4 years of every year being better than the one before it- continues.

I hope that 2009 brings wonderful things for everyone who reads my blog- I don't know who most of you are, but thank you for taking the time to read and for caring about what goes on with me and Project Smile. It never fails to amaze me when people tell me that they read this blog. When I started this in January, I didn't think I'd ever have any readers- couldn't imagine that anyone would find me interesting!

I've been watching the highlights of the year on TV, and they were showing the sports highlights- with the Giants winning the superbowl being one of them. Now, I like the Patriots a lot, but I fell in love with the New York teams- particularly Giants, Yankees and the Jets too- so of course, I was pulling for a Giants victory in the Superbowl, but I never thought they would win it. They did win- they were a tough, scrappy team that hadn't gotten any respect and they went up against perfection and won- it is inspiring. I remember watching the Giants in the 2001 Superbowl- I was going through difficult family times and was feeling very sad and stressed most of the time. I was alone in a huge bar/restaurant in Times Square. I watched the game on a huge television, standing the whole time. The game sucked and I was sad anyways- only a few hours earlier I'd been walking to Times Sq. crying on the phone with my mom- I remember thinking how the game summed up how I was feeling about things. What a difference it was 7 years later- those dark days have been replaced by many wonderful things and I am so incredibly grateful.

Anyways friends, I am off- it is 12:17, I am going to read my book- total chick lit, but I'm loving it. Tomorrow, I am continuing my end of the year clean up and organizing my office and also hoping that we don't get too much snow and the roads are driveable tomorrow night- I'm heading to the Resolution Ball- my first time going to a huge NYE event. Happy new year!

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