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Miracles in the Making … Erin’s Advent-ure Calendar – Week Four

Communications specialist Erin Baily chronicles her adventures as the newest member of the Children’s Miracle Network at UC Davis team. Click here for background on this feature. 

Oh the places you’ll go. ~ Dr. Seuss

Day 16 – Dec. 18

I cannot believe another work week is already here. That means I am almost at the end of month one and am approaching the last few days of my Advent-ure Calendar. I have hardly had time to catch my breath in between the whirlwind of activities – holiday and otherwise – that have been part of my day-to-day.

I have sported my elf dress on more than one occasion, jingling all the way. Met Santa on numerous occasions and have experienced generosity beyond compare. It has been SO MUCH FUN and I just don’t want it to end! Well, guess what? I just found out it won’t! YAY!

With the exception of the elf dress (which WILL be retired … temporarily) and a few less fir trees, ornaments and Santa visits, it looks as though this trend of fun and generosity will continue into 2018. Woo hoo! Here comes the herkie! Argh … pulled a muscle. Think I broke something, too. Yikes.

Lucky for me, I will have time to recover from my cheerleading injuries before attending the fabulous event I found out about today! In a place where glam meets glitz (AKA the Citizen Hotel in Sacramento), the stars will be out on March 4. It’s the third annual Red Carpet Black Tie Ball 2018.

Hosted by Gilmore Heating, Air & Solar, this Academy Awards viewing party benefits UC Davis Children’s Hospital. Although the holiday decorations will be long boxed up, this event will shine nonetheless! Imagine being greeted and photographed on the red carpet just like the celebrity donor you are, then enjoying locally sourced hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar with Best Picture-inspired cocktails. For the right price at the silent auction, Hollywood-themed memorabilia, tempting experiences and outings can further elevate your donor stardom.

The Red Carpet Black Tie Ball 2018 at the Citizen Hotel on March 4 is your opportunity to enjoy the limelight while generously supporting UC Davis Children’s Hospital. The event date is set … is yours?

Day 17 – Dec. 19

Speaking of the Academy Awards, picture this: It’s 1957. The 29th Academy Awards is underway. It’s the Best Actor category. And the winner is (there’s that anticipation thing again) – Yul Brynner for The King and I! The crowd goes wild.

Why do I bring this up? Is it because it’s the holiday season and Yul is close to yule? No, because I JUST thought of that after the fact. Is it my secret longing to have been in musicals? Well, yes; but no. I mention Yul because of his haircut … if you can call it that.

Although Andrew Schaefer from Addison Avenue Investment Services, a First Tech Federal Credit Union partner, didn’t go completely “Yul” with the trademark bald head, he did let his co-workers take a few inches off as part of “Shave the Schaefer.” I found out about this fundraiser for Children’s Miracle Network and could not believe the back story, let alone the before and after.

Unlike Yul, Andrew’s new “do” revealed a face not seen for YEARS by anyone; including his wife. In fact, he would not even shave for his wedding! But after more than 65 donations totaling $1,000 for the kids at UC Davis Children’s Hospital, Andrew grabbed the razor. We at CMN (not to mention his wife!) were thrilled.

And another award for generosity goes to … First Tech; Andrew Schaefer accepting.

Day 18 – Dec. 20

Speaking of “accepting,” the UC Davis Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department began accepting toys today as part of the Drive-through Toy Drive. This annual event gives people the opportunity to literally shop, stop and drop! Donors can circle the drive at UC Davis MIND Institute … no parking required! Unless, of course, you have SO many toys you have to pull over to unload your ambulance. WOW!

Thanks to Chive On Sacramento and hundreds of other donors, Santa will have some help this holiday and more importantly, so will kids and their parents at UC Davis Children’s Hospital. GIVE ON!

Day 19 – Dec. 21

And the gifts – monetary, toys and otherwise – keep coming! Just this morning, another bin FULL of toys and gift cards and games arrived. Elves from Flyers Energy stopped off at the store this morning before heading to their “shift” at the annual, just-in-time-for-the-holidays Holiday Workshop put on by the Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department, the great folks who bring you the Toy Drive! They are giving ANIMALS!

Thousands of toys lined the “shelves” as parents strolled the aisles, choosing gifts for their children. This is the tenth year for the free workshop where parents and siblings take a moment away from their child’s bedside to enjoy goodies and crafts, gift giving and complimentary wrapping. More than 30 volunteers from the hospital and the community staff this event which gives parents a chance to shop without hassle and make the holiday brighter for their families. What a gift.

Day 20 – Dec. 22

Like a kid with a new toy, I could not wait to “play” again today. I am not talking about the basketballs or babies or BIG bears (although I would have LOVED any of those as a kid), I simply wanted another day doing what I have been documenting on this Advent-ure Calendar – LOVING MY JOB and writing my story. Turns out, today I got to write a Toy Story, too!

This Toy Story has a twist, though. Unlike Woody the cowboy doll who initially was jealous when a new spaceman known as Buzz Lightyear arrived in Andy’s room, the toys at UC Davis MIND Institute were thrilled when new toys kept coming. So much so, a little birdie (aka Hatchimal) told me I might want to make a return visit to greet a U-Haul truck full of toys from Fitness System in Woodland and friends! Yep, you heard right. It was a haul that could impress even Santa! The lobby soon became a virtual toy store, complete with superheroes, dolls and, well, Cars. But I’ll leave the Cars saga for another time.

Every day since I’ve been here – Dec. 25

Speaking of time, this time spent in my new role has worked wonders for me; miracles, really. As I look back over this month-long Advent-ure Calendar, I revisit the days … and there were many. But as one of my favorite quotes reminds me, “We don’t remember days, we remember moments.” I am so grateful to have been a witness to innumerable moments of grace and tenacity and resilience and generosity and joy that leave me speechless. And, as you have probably already figured out, that doesn’t happen often.

Thank you for sharing in my advent-ure and allowing me to share in yours. Happy New Year. Here’s to many more moments!

If you’d like to revisit some of the previous “moments” of Erin’s Advent-ure Calendar, please click below.

Miracles in the Making – Week One

Miracles in the Making – Week Two

Miracles in the Making – Week Three