Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Fundraising Dinner!

This past weekend, I held a fundraising dinner for my upcoming mission in Panama, and the only way I can accurately explain how I felt about it is WOW!!! The amount of support and encouragement I received from my family and friends was absolutely astounding. I never imagined that so many people would be so passionate and excited for me, but most of all I am so grateful and blessed to have so many generous people in my life. After this fundraising dinner, in addition to donations from my extended family, I have almost made the halfway mark for my fundraising goal! Although I still have a long way to go, the energy and enthusiasm inspired a new and exciting hope that I can continue down this path when I appeal to churches.

For the dinner, the Alberts, our family friends, were kind enough to help us rent out a room at their yacht club. It overlooks the water and was the perfect spot to hang out with family and friends. Not only was it a great way to inform my friends and family about my upcoming mission in Panama, but it was also just a really nice and fun reunion for everyone. We got to see a lot of faces that we don't see too often anymore, and it was way too much fun to catch up with everyone and have a good time.

With the help of several people, the dinner was a great success. A special thank-you to everyone that brought dishes of food and drinks! Most of all, I want to give a special shout-out to my mom - Beth Carter - for making it all happen! This woman I, at least most of the time, claim as my mother went above and beyond and organized everything as well as devoted so much time and energy to make it all happen. Her efforts truly showed since the dinner was awesome! Also a special shout out to Mrs. Alberts, a close family friend and basically my other mom, for helping us find the perfect place as well as help organize.

At the end, it was obviously appropriate to have a photo shoot. Here are a few gems that accurately sum up how amazing my family and friends are:
Again, special shout out to this woman who made it all happen as well as has supported me in everything I do. I can't imagine where I would be without her. Most amazing is the fact that we took a good picture together, considering most of the ones we take are absolutely absurd like this:
Another special shout out goes to my dad - John Carter - for being my other number 1 fan. After all these years he somehow is still able to put up with me, which is a miracle in itself.
To continue the photo shoot, I naturally have to add the two girls in my life that I couldn't imagine my life without. These two have been by my side since the beginning and helped shaped me into who I am today. Although I can't believe I can't pack these two into my suitcase for Panama, I'm sure we can find a time to adventure around Panama together.
And just to add to this list, I can't leave out the two other mamas that I have. I have probably spent more time at both of these houses than my own, and probably more than they wished I would, and I am more than blessed to have three families that I claim as my own.
Lastly, how could I leave out my weirdo sister Katherine. Although she couldn't be there since she's kickin' it in the Netherlands with her new fiance (YAY), I know she was there in spirit. I love this girl more than life, and I am positive I wouldn't be half the person I am today without her. Here's a real beauty of this silly girl:

Okay - just had to send some lovin' out. THANKS AGAIN to everyone that has supported me and continues to support me - without you, none of this would be possible! Thank you thank you thank you for all of the donations made so far, and I promise the next few posts will not be this long and sappy.