Keeping His Memory Alive

Every month, I take gift bags to my local cancer center, the same place where I had treatment the first time I was diagnosed, and where I go for monthly bloodwork, injections, and appointments.  Although I would love to do more, I can’t take bags for all the patients, but I take a dozen bags each month and pass them on to the wonderful oncology nurses who distribute them to those who could use a little pick-me-up as they go through treatment.  I have taken everything from comfort items to lipstick to Bibles and cake mixes.  Each month, I plan the gift bags around a theme.  I typically put these bags together myself or with the help of my loving mother; but, over the last couple of years, generous people have donated money, time, or materials to help fill these bags.

Even though the items found in the bag are often simple and inexpensive, the nurses have told me that the patients love to receive them.  As a patient myself, I know that there were days when I felt terrible and my spirits were low.  My prayer is that God sees to it that these bags fall into the hands of those patients who need them the most, those patients whose day could use some brightening.

My father passed away in 2004 and each year on his birthday, we try to give back, just like he used to do.  My father was on dialysis for 7 years before he passed away, so he understood what it was like to sit in a recliner for hours and receive life saving treatment that wore on your body and soul.  We have donated to various dialysis centers over the years, but this year we wanted to donate to the cancer center through the LifeConfetti bags.  I know that he most definitely would have approved.

The bags were filled with a box of spaghetti, a jar of spaghetti sauce, mints, a pot holder, oven mitt, and dish towel.  My Dad used to make spaghetti sauce with tomatoes, fresh from the garden, using his special recipe. I included that recipe in the bags along with a description of the wonderful man he was.

Here are some pictures of this special LifeConfetti donation.

Dad's LifeConfetti Bags
The oven mitt, dish towel, dish cloth, spaghetti, sauce, and mints that filled the bags.
Bags
LifeConfetti bags, assembled and ready.
Husband. Father. Friend
I wrote this in Dad’s memory and included it in the bags.
Spaghetti Sauce Recipe
Dad’s Famous Spaghetti Sauce Recipe
Cancer Center
It was a beautiful day for a delivery to the UPMC Cancer Center in Bethel Park, PA.

 

If you would like to donate items, or fund gift bags in memory or in honor of someone special, please contact send me a message through the LifeConfetti Facebook page or via email at lifeconfetti2017@yahoo.com.

Author: Jennifer Lilley Collins

I'm a Mom, wife, daughter, and friend navigating life with metastatic breast cancer while finding joy in the everyday and spreading hope, love, and inspiration along the way.

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