Thursday, April 23, 2009

I watched a clip on "you tube" this morning of the Run for the Wall segment in Jackson, MS. There is no background music provoking any feeling, just raw footage of the bikers making the trek across the country from California to D.C. to pay tribute to our veterans.

Pete Tyer, the director of the MS Chapter of Hog Owners, who enthusiastically accepted the cupcake mission to raise money for the Trail of Honor, shared a story with me one day.
He told me that he was working traffic for the event and a Vietnam veteran walked past him and Pete said "Thank you for serving our country." The Vet teared up and said that in the 40 years he had been home, no one had ever thanked him.

I openly admit I never thought to thank a person in uniform before I started working with Pete and my father on the cupcake mission on behalf of the Trail of Honor, and my father is a 2 star General in the Air National Guard. A friend of mine thanked him once and I thought he had just held the door open for her.

Cupcake mission or not, we have soldiers, men and women, who sacrifice their time with their friends and family, sacrifice their very lives, to protect ours. Whether you agree with war or not, the fact is, the sad fact is, is that it exists so the responsibility of protection falls on someone. If you see a man or woman in uniform, please go out of your way to thank him or her. They have fought, or are fighting, to protect us on our homefront.

I look at my dad with new eyes now. I see him as bigger than I ever imagined-and that's pretty big because I already held him up on a pedastal. My thank you is more heartfelt and I am proud of what he has done for our country, continues to do for our country, and I am proud for all the battles he has fought but not always won on the homefront, too. He has taught me "character" from a very early age whether I was ready to embrace it or not.

There were so many special moments at the cupcake mission in Jackson, MS on April 11th, and the one I will treasure most, is riding in on the back of my Dad's bike. It was a moment of pride, admiration, enthusiasm, and gratitude all wrapped up in one bundle, a moment shared between father and daughter, General and civilian, Harley owner and a Harley owner wanna be.

Of course other moments stand out as well: meeting the wonderful Pete Tyer himself and his lovely wife, Linda, embracing Savannah Triplett, gold medal mother of Andrew Triplett who I have not seen in almost nine years, and sitting on Big Sexy's bike. Some people are "in the know" and some will just have to leave that to their imagination.

If you are in the Jackson area, please go to the Trail of Honor event May 16-18th at the Harley Shop on I-55 South and not only support the people who are making the trail such a special place, but also pay tribute and respect to the people riding through on their Run for the Wall.

The sound of rolling thunder will forever change you...

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

It is more challenging than I imagined to convince people to accept the cupcake mission. I have officially stalled. And for anyone who read my first entry, I am afraid of flying. Which is ironic, because when I graduated high school, all I wanted to do was skydive which made no sense to my father, the pilot. He agreed to the skydiving lessons as long as I would take 10 flying hours on the very Cessna style plane I would be jumping from. I only took six hours realizing I would never solo so reluctantly my father granted me the skydiving lessons. I almost backed out of those, too, but my grandfather, Opa, had a few words of wisdom that convinced me to jump. Opa was a wise man full of wit, humor, and one-liners that summed everything up. His one-liner of the day was, "At least you don't have enemies shooting at you." Why that put everything into perspective and gave me the courage to jump is beyond me but it was the most immaculate sunset I have ever experienced to date.

But I digress...back to stalling out. Having spoken to friends, they are all incredibly supportive but flat out of time and unsure that their efforts will actually make a difference for the better. While it is easy for me to disagree, it is more challenging to be persuasive. But I will....

I have contacted one business in Atlanta, a cupcake bakery of all things, and I am waiting to hear back if they, too, will accept the cupcake mission and donate all proceeds of the sales for the day (or a portion of the proceeds) to a charity of their choice. In time I will disclose the bakery because regardless of them accepting the mission or not, everyone should go support them and fill their tummies with absolute yummies. Again I face the challenge of persuasion (why did I drop debate in high school???) but I never underestimate the power of a cupcake and I have hope and faith that the cupcake mission will be in Hotlanta soon...

Friday, April 17, 2009

I’m still in the process of discovery.

My father is a two-star General and pilot in the Air National Guard. I am afraid to fly.

My mother is a brilliant chef and I manage to send instant cheese grits all over the kitchen counter.

My husband is a focused business man and I am a creative artist. As an eternal optimist, I see this as balance.

Our daughter is two and head strong—I have met my match.

As a freelance writer for Longleaf Magazine, I have eaten my weight in cupcakes and lived to write about it. In search of the perfect cupcake, I found that cupcakes have far more depth than I ever gave them credit. They are powerful sources for fundraising and this epiphany was my first inspiration for the documentary. This epiphany, combined with my long time obsession with all things dessert and my drive to reach out and help people, has led me on this journey to save the world one cupcake at a time.

As a long time actor, I tried my eye at film making and my first short film, “You’re Too…:” is entering its sixth film festival in March. “You’re Too” won an award at Broad Humor in California in June of 2008. Other screenings include the Women’s International Film Festival in Miami, FL, Austin Women’s Film Festival in Texas, Cucalorus Film Festival in Wilmington, NC, Dixie Film Festival in Athens, GA and Reel Women Film Festival in Beverly Hills.

As a wife, mother, creative artist and student of life, I am totally loving the ride.