Saturday, July 11, 2009

There's no place like home...Etsy Project Embrace

"There's no place like home...there's no place like home..."
~ Dorothy, The Wizard of Oz

Well, it's good to be home ~ in every way. A few things have happened in the last few days that make this a very heartfelt statement. Home is a word that can fill us with the peaceful certainty we belong somewhere, the joyful understanding that there are people who care about us no matter what, and the freeing gift that we can be ourselves and experience our lives with the support and acceptance of those who accompany us on the journey. Home can make us just plain grateful.

Laura Slocum, of lauraslocumpainted on Etsy, has recently been diagnosed with stage 3 ovarian cancer. Her amazing strength and attitude have inspired Etsy Project Embrace, the brainchild of Kim (slinkymalinkicat) and Amy (ThePeachTree), to raise money for cancer research through The American Cancer Society. An ever increasing number of sellers have signed up to donate the proceeds of the sales from some of their listings in support of Laura and this cause. People who have come to know each other, celebrate each other's successes, create treasuries to showcase each other's talents and creations, encourage each other and send beautiful, simple and happy notes to each other and who, like this phenomenal group of Esty sellers, step up to help each other when someone needs it ... have come together ~ hmmm, sounds like home to me.

The following are Laura's words, written to be shared with us all:

I believe that you must play the hand you’re dealt. Six weeks ago, I was diagnosed with stage 3 Ovarian Cancer. My mom died from the same. I am a huge believer in eating right, exercising, and getting regular checkups. I’ve done all those things, yet, I have cancer. WOW. That’s a life-changing situation, for sure. I just turned 46 …. (a very very young 46!) Strangely, I feel blessed. Most everyday of these 6 weeks, I’ve had a smile on my face. I’m going to play the hand I’ve been dealt in the best and most positive way I know how. I’m so fortunate my boys are older, they drive, they can do laundry and help around the house. There will always be some people in this world who have it better and some who have it worse. That’s just life.

I’ve been an Etsy addict since around this time last year, when I started doing treasuries. My sister Jenn, of jennreese7 and my niece Kelly, of SweetnessJewelry, are also crazy about Etsy. The one thing I’ve learned in the past year is that Etsy has made it a point to have their competing sellers be friends through promoting each other in the treasuries. That sounds kind of funny, but, on the quest to have the “coveted” FP, we create treasuries, we comment on other treasuries, we “convo” people all over the world to congratulate them on their successes, and we make friends. Aren’t we supposed to be competing for sales?? Well, maybe some things are just more important than sales. From the moment I had a diagnosis, while still in the hospital, my Etsy friends were first on the scene – building treasuries just for me, wishing me well, offering advice, sending gifts, and a few have gone so far as to donate proceeds to the American Cancer Society in my honor!! Just to remind you………these are people ....I’VE NEVER MET! They have completely gone out of their way to be a friend or try to put a smile on my face. I now even talk to some of them on the phone! Now, I’m not talking 2 or 3 friends, I’m talking like 30 or 40! Some people just have checked my profile and offer words of encouragement!

The first day that we learned about my chemo and all the ‘ins and outs’, the ‘goods and bads’, etc., my husband went online to search for support groups. He said to me that night, “I will never do that again, I was so depressed that I had to get off the computer” I said, in reply, “I don’t need support groups, I all need are my friends on Etsy”! They lift me up on a daily basis. It is Sunday. Tomorrow morning, I will leave my house at 7:30 am for my first round of chemo. I will have an IV drip for about 6 hours and be home around 5:00 pm. I will do that again on Tuesday, then again on Wednesday. then again on the following Monday. I look forward to 8 months of that chemo schedule, followed by another year of some form of maintenance chemo.

There are 4 things I know for sure:
1. I am a Christian and I believe God has a plan for me.
2. I believe in myself to do the very best I can do and try to help others in the process by getting my story out there.
3. I have the most wonderful and supportive husband, family and friends.
4. Logging onto Etsy everyday and hearing from my friends will keep this smile on my face, not matter what I am going through.
Thank you Laura, for your example of heart, strength and courage.
Thank you Kim and Amy for your leadership and willingness to step up.
For more information on Etsy Project Embrace, or if you would like to participate, please contact Kim or Amy.


  1. karon--- yet another beautiful and heartfelt post in laura's honor. everything you stated above so eloquently couldn't be more true. i feel so fortunate myself for having met so many wonderful people on etsy. to be able to join together to help in any way to lift laura's spirits and help to bolster her courage--well i can't even really express how meaningful it is--
    and yes--hats off to kim and amy-- they've done a terrific job of gathering the forces!

  2. Thank you Karon for sharing Laura's story. I was totally unaware. I will definitely keep her and her family in my prayers. Thanks too, for the links that I will need to keep in touch.

  3. karon, awesome blog!! thanks so much for writing about me and spreading the word - It means so much to me!! So many people have gotten in touch with me since reading the blogs and I'm very very grateful! laura xxoo

  4. laura, it's my perfect pleasure to offer some small help in any way possible... i hope you're feeling ok today!
    kathi and cat ~ many thanks for your lovely comments, my friends!
    karon xo