Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Things That Make Me Happy

As many of you know, I am a slight overvolunteer (thanks Angela for the great word)  I have been since I was in 6th grade.  My parents instilled in me at a very young age to be a hard worker.  Not only to be a hard worker, but to give back to the community in different ways. The summer of my 6th grade year is when I began volunteering with Girl Scout Day Camp in Canyon.  I then began to volunteer with the education part of the Panhandle Plains Historical Museum.  I have spent countless hours volunteering on tons of different things.  One of my favorite quotes is:

"Do something because you love it, not because you expect a reward."

When I moved to Irving it was even more important for me to be involved in different activities because I longed for the small community feel of my home town.  I am so thankful that my parents taught me the importance of community and volunteering.  They also taught me that even though not everyone appreciates what you do, it is the thought that counts... and not to  stop what you are doing.

This past weekend I participated in the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Breast Cancer 3 Day.  This was my 4th year.  I walked my first year to participate in it.  If you don't know about the event it is a 3 day walk that spans 60 miles.  During the weekend you tent camp in pink city.  To be able to walk you must also raise $2300.  After I walked the first year, I realized that I am a much better cheerleader and behind the scenes worker so I signed up for Crew.  I was put on Camp Logistics.  Camp Logistics is the advance team.  Our team goes in on Thursday morning and lays out the tent grid for the 1000s of tents, puts up the thousands of chairs, puts up hundreds of 8ft tables, puts out tons of trashcans, and does other odds and ends to get ready for the almost 3000 walkers.  On Friday when the walkers arrive we do what we can to make their life easier.  This means bussing the tables, picking up trash, emptying trash, offering kind words, and so much more.  We do this for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  We are up before the walkers are up and we go to sleep much later.  On Sunday our job is to get up, make sure the walkers are taken care of, and then take everything down again so the staff can move to the next location.  This year the Dallas 3 Day raised over 7.1 million dollars for breast cancer.  Wow! I was a part of that!  How amazing to be a part of something so much bigger than me!  This year the school that I moved to had their first ever pink week and we raised over $430 in one week!  I was SO PROUD to be a part of a new community that was willing to give what they could!
This year I am learning so many new things, learning how to juggle my time better, and hopefully learning how to be a better person.  At the first of the year I asked someone for help or suggestions on what I could do to get everything done.  The response I got was.. "Andrea, you know you are at a new school this year, so maybe you shouldn't take on as much as you have in the past of after school activities." Wow... I have run into so many people this year that are having a tough time at their jobs.  I understand.. I get it.. I am there!  We all have tough jobs.. ones that take up so much of our time.  If I only did my job... I wouldn't know what else is going on.. what else is important in my community.  I think that we forget though, that there is so much more beyond us.  I do things because having a community makes me the person that I am.. and more importantly the person that I want to be.  Last year I did the school yearbook (and had for 5 years), was on PTA board (and had been for 5 years), was on CIC,  co-managed a Destination ImagiNation team, helped head up Pink Week, hosted STAR Events, participated in the Breast Cancer 3 Day and so much more.  I don't list these to toot my own horn.. I list these because it is a reminder that yes.. I have a school community.. but my after school activities make me a better person that is ready to get my own students and anyone I come into contact with a better contributing member to society. 

So.. I didn't listen to that suggestion, it just wasn't going to work for me.  This year I have started a DI team at my new school, just completed my 4th Breast Cancer 3 Day, helped host our first pink week, hosted a STAR event, am on the CIC, am on my new schools PTA board, and so much more.  I do these things because they make me happy, help my community, and help others see that there is more important things than the looming test or all of the deadlines that we must all make.  Am I tired.. very much so.. do I spend alot of time at school.. of course I do (it is almost 6pm and I am still here).. do I want to give up anything so I am not so overwhelmed... NOPE (it hasn't gotten that far yet.. and I have an Amazing Husband that lets me the person that I am)

What are you doing for your community?  How do you stay involved, but also ahead at school?

Want to see more pictures from the 3 day? Check this link out!  Thanks for listening to me ramble :)  Next blog will be over how I organize Unique.