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Helmet of Hope

From Kate:

Some really incredible foundations help other non-profits make their dreams come true. One in particular is the Jimmie Johnson Foundation. They are currently accepting nominations to enter the Blue Bunny Helmet of Hope. Some of our friends have been kind enough to start the nomination process for Getty Owl Foundation.

The more nominations we receive, the more likely Getty Owl Foundation will be in the running for the grand prize: $10,000 grant and the Getty Owl Foundation logo featured on Jimmie Johnson’s helmet.

The deadline for nominations is May 6th, 5pm ET.

We would appreciate you taking a few minutes of your life to submit your nomination of Getty Owl Foundation. Click HERE to nominate.

There is a portion of the process that asks for a short paragraph to explain why Getty Owl Foundation should be nominated. We understand that time is of the essence for any person, so we put together a short example for inspiration.

“Getty Owl Foundation (GOF) helps families affected by Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA), the #1 genetic killer of young children. SMA has no treatment or cure. SMA is a severe neuromuscular disorder affecting the ability to move, swallow, and even breathe. The prognosis for most SMA cases is passing away by age 2. GOF helps newly diagnosed families understand SMA, advocate for their children, and helps SMA families worldwide get much needed information, medical supplies, and equipment. GOF raises SMA awareness and funds research for a cure. There is hope, as SMA is the #1 disease closest to treatment of over 600 neurological disorders. Researchers and families need funds to better their lives and end SMA.”

Thank you in advance for your time and consideration to lend a hand.

Helmet of Hope

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Cluck, Cluck, and a Cluck!

From Kate:

As a kid, my house was always a welcome haven for pets. Hamsters, rats, dogs, cats, fish, and chickens. You name it, we probably had them at one time or another. My brother Tim had some really cool frogs as well now that I think about it.

My parents must have also liked animals, because I don’t think I ever heard no in regards bringing an animal home.

Mark had a dog growing up.

When we merged as a couple, I brought along two cats and a rabbit and two fish. As our lives continued to grow, so did the animals. We added two more cats. May I first add before anyone rolls their eyes in the sure quantity of cats, they were all rescued. I cannot let an animal be without a family. Poppy our gentle giant, Maine Coon was found as I was on a run about two miles away from our house. Malnourished and abandoned, I needed to save him. So Libby, Maggie, Poppy, and Mr. Richie Tenanbaum are our loving (I use that term loosely for a couple of the cats) felines. Libby and Maggie are our female ladies who are almost 16 years old. Libby literally is about an ounce in weight but oddly enough is the alpha of the entire household. It is amazing to watch. 🙂

We had a rabbit named Sophia for a short time.Veterinarian declared him a she, so the name was decided and I didn’t have the heart to change his name, so Sophia stuck. 🙂

We brought our pride and joy, Cooper, our beloved Whippet into our lives in 2006. He has been such an incredible companion and he is so loving and gentle with Getty. He is extremely sensitive but also mischievous, which makes it difficult to get upset with him if he does something bad. He plays us like a fiddle. 🙂

So when Getty graced us with her presence in 2010, we were bringing her home to not only her new home, but home to her new sisters and brothers.

In true cat form, they didn’t care about the new addition. Cats don’t care about anyone, if you know what I mean. 🙂 However Cooper was jazzed to have a little sissy to care for and look after.

I did notice something happen after Getty was diagnosed with our animals. I am convinced they know that Getty needs extra care. I am not sure what to call it, but there just always seems to be a gentle energy about each of our animals when they are around Getty. Cooper, we noticed very early on. He is close by her and he tends to alert us in advance in certain situations. Kind of weird.

Anyways, Mark has really been a trooper with all of our animals. Hairballs, potty training Cooper, you name it, Mark has been very forgiving for my need to have pets in the house. So when I came to him with another “idea”, his ears were working but I am not sure if he was listening. 🙂

I wanted Getty to have some chickens. Spring was in the air and I knew chicks were plentiful at any feed store. My rationale is this: I want Getty to experience all kinds of animals and chickens would be so cool. They would be self contained outside, which would appease Mark. I liked the idea of continuing our sense of routine in the house. We spend a lot of time outside and having friends to welcome every morning sounded terrific. Gathering eggs with mama and use them when we have Baking Mondays. Just seemed like a win, win.

PicMonkey Collage1 We named each of them on Easter. As you can tell we were shooting for 1940’s-50’s names of the time. Chickens certainly have personalities. Agnes is a sweetheart and avoids conflict in every situation. Ethel is the peace keeper of the trio. As she gets bigger, she is starting to grow into her own. And then there is Mildred. She is the top hen, the alpha, the queen of the coop. Getty loves watching them move about the coop and as the days go on, she is enjoying their clucking. 🙂

The ladies have a flock protector by the name of Richie. You would think our youngest feline would be out to eat them, but on the contrary he is very protective of them. Always hanging out to make sure the ladies are okay. It is very cute.


Here are some great pictures of Getty with her new feather sisters.

Getty1 chickens 

So now our house is a bit bigger. English, meow, woof, and cluck are all languages spoken in our home. 🙂 Here is to a terrific Spring season.




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Full Circle

From Kate:

Sometimes you have moments that make you step back and wonder “how could this be true?”

When Getty was first diagnosed at 4 months, our family was lucky enough to receive an interview by one of our local TV stations that leant their ear and their time to showcase the heartache we were going through. But most importantly the awareness for SMA that we felt was so vital at that moment. The shock we felt with the diagnosis made us instantly want to tell the world about this horrible condition. We were given that time and we were so incredibly thankful.

Fast forward: The camera woman that filmed our interview in 2010 now just happens to work for the same school district as I did for the last ten years as a teacher. It was not until a phone conversation that we both connected the dots. It was a really comforting conversation.  I was excited for her to see Getty after almost two and a half years.

Rebecca’s goal was to interview our story while connecting the story with a program that was going on at New San High School, the very same high school I taught at for ten years. Earth Day was coming up and it was a perfect time to showcase a program that we have had on campus for a considerable amount of time. Headed by Kendall Macgregor, the Community Transition Program, the adults enrolled are learning life skills. They have been recycling at the high school for years and they used the money earned for all kinds of reasons. In the last two years, they have donated some of their funds to Getty Owl Foundation.

We are so proud of their hard work and their willingness to use their hard earned money to donate to helping the fight against SMA.

A video was created by Rebecca yesterday and we wanted to share. It was a very emotional day when Rebecca came but I was also so excited for Getty to show how she is beating the odds.

The bubble Mark and I have created is stable, functioning, and helps Getty thrive. There was a moment in the interview that I became very emotional and I wanted to explain why because to me it is worth noting.

I had a moment to explain how fortunate we are to have an SMA community that helps us care for Getty. It does take a village and I think sitting in front of the camera, I had flashbacks of times in which we needed to make split second decisions and had we not had a conversation on trouble shooting emergency situations, it is very likely Getty would not be with us. We continue to learn from families all over the United States and it is my hope that our family in some way shape or form have been able to contribute in some way as well.

We would like to thank Rebecca Leroux for the interview and for her thoughtful video. Rebecca you have given us another opportunity to educate and tell Getty’s story. We would like to thank Kendall’s awesome kids that believe in making this world a better place and knowing that helping others is the best gift anyone can give of themselves.

Thank you all so very much.

Here is the video, click HERE!


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Winner of the Family Four Pack! Sorry so late. :)

From Kate:


We were having a lot of fun over here that we forgot about drawing a winner. Oopsie.

The random winner is……….Heidi!

Thank you all for commenting and participating.

Heidi can you email us at so we know for sure you can make the event. If not, I will draw for a new winner.

Happy Friday Everyone!

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Ticket Giveaway to Family Fun Fest This Saturday!

FFF logo (3)


From Kate:

Our friends at the Junior League of Sacramento are putting on an incredible event THIS Saturday, April 20th from 5:30-8:30pm at Fairytale Town.

The  Junior League of Sacramento, Inc. is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women, and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers.

They host events, like this, to raise funds to support community programs. Kids in the Kitchen program, Rethink your Drink campaign, and their Read and Feed Garden, and  The Sacramento Food Bank and Family Services,  are only just a few out of many programs  JLS support.

What to look forward to at Family Fun Fest:



Kid’s Cook-off

Kid Friendly Booths as well as many other booths. *They have been nice enough to have us there too. 🙂 We are so excited!

-Make Musical Instruments

-Arts & Crafts

-Food Trivia

-Decorating pots and planting seeds

Live Music

Martial Arts and Dancing Demonstrations




You can purchase tickets HERE as well as at the door on the day of. 



JLS has been awesome enough to let us give away one Family Four Pack (A value of $60)

Here is how you win. Leave a comment……it is as easy as that. We will choose randomly on Friday (April 19th at noon). Tickets will be at will call at Fairytale Town for the winner.

We hope you have a terrific time and stop by our booth and say hello. 🙂