Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Camden's Crusade: Fighting Pediatic Cancer

Camden's Crusade: Fighting Pediatic Cancer
Photography by Second Ave Photography

Camden's crusade. On September 29, 2015, 4 year old Camden was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Sometimes, there are no words. When you say "pediatric cancer" that should be enough. A child is going through something that no child should ever have to endure. However, there is a hidden rainbow I have discovered through my past profession as an ER pediatric registered nurse. The rainbow is: We have a choice. Through life and death(inevitably for all of us), we have a choice. We choose how we face our day and how we live our lives. None of us knows the length of our physical earthly existence, but the choice we have remains the same no matter the circumstances. Above all, we must choose to live.

After the storm, lies beauty unimaginable.

Fighting cancer is expensive for the affected families. There is extra time off from work, medical expenses, and other expenses that I cannot even fathom. We have so much, can we not GIVE just a little? A little gesture, a little food, a little smile, and yes a little money all goes such a long way. Hope, love, and always back to HOPE. Where there are people that care, we have hope. Hope lives where there are people willing to fight on behalf of such brave children. Children like Camden. Camden, we fight with you.

Recently, Camden's mother Jocelyn chose to shave her head along with her son. The ultimate love is a mother. With two boys of my own, I understand the love and sacrifice. The "whatever it takes" attitude that a mother must have. Jocelyn has that and so much more. Camden's family are supporters of the Stillbrave Childhood Cancer Foundation. Camden's mom tells me that the National Cancer Institute only allocates 4% of their funding to pediatrics. That is truly a shocking number as well as the statistic shown below.
 Photo from CureSearch for Children's Cancer Research + Education.

If you have a little to give, please visit Camden's Crusade to donate. Want to do even more? Camden has his very own "Crusading 4 Camden..." tee. You can buy this tee on behalf of all children who are fighting and have fought cancer. Hope is the only thing stronger than fear. Thank you for reading as well as your heart-felt donations for this local Northern Virginia family.
Visit Project Loudoun to see how bloggers are giving voice to humanitarian issues right here in Northern Virginia.


Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Fabbioli Cellars NEW Tasting Room

Photography courtesy of Second Ave Photography

Fabbioli Cellars has a stunning new tasting room! Myself and many friends of Project Loudoun got to experience the new tasting room for the very first time at their Grand Opening Saturday, February 6th. Fun Fact: Did you know? The owner Doug Fabbioli and members of his staff constructed the new tasting room. The magnificence of this new tasting room can be seen and felt right as you walk through the doors. The space is inviting with high ceilings, beautiful natural lighting, and lots of earthy elements to ensure an enjoyable and relaxing ambiance.

My favorite part of the new tasting room? The wine. Fabbioli's has the best wines in Northern Virginia. My personal recommendations? Something White, Cabernet Franc*reserve*, and their Raspberry Merlot. Feel free to skip the tasting and simply buy a bottle with some accoutrements for a leisurely afternoon with your friends. Fabbioli's has a fine selection of local meats, cheeses, chocolates, and bread.

When it comes to a wine tasting, you will not find a better curated tasting menu anywhere in Northern Virginia.  The sweet and savory pairings at Fabbioli's are carefully organized to go perfectly with each wine. These beautiful little bites also feature many local area businesses. The tasting guides are very knowledgeable about wine flavor profiles, Fabbioli history, and the little bites served with each Fabbioli wine. Local, fresh, and beautifully curated. What more could you ask for? Just look at that lighting!
A special thank you goes out to Blaire Ring of Second Ave Photography for the beautiful photos seen here. Also, a huge thank you to Taffy Floral for providing lovely floral for our tables and Pure Love Macaron by Kim Moehnke for providing a sweet French treat for everyone to eat. We hope to see Pure Love Macarons on the tasting menu really soon! I'm thinking a dark chocolate macaron with Fabbioli's Raspberry Merlot. The thought is mouthwatering!

Project Loudoun made its launch on Saturday, February 6th along with Fabbioli Cellars new tasting rooms. We are grateful to Doug Fabbioli and all the staff at Fabbioli's for their unwavering support. Project Loudoun is a blogger driven project. Bloggers are united in Northern Virginia for one common cause, "Community Love". We are dedicated to spreading the word about issues facing our area and non-profits that are making a difference. Non-profits like One.Love.Loudoun, who are setting the bar on how you "make a difference" one small step at a time. One.Love.Loudoun works with many members of our community including: politicians, small business owners, and other non-profits to raise money for a variety of charitable causes in Northern Virginia. It is my pleasure to recognize Second Ave Photography, The Marketing Management Group, One.Love.Loudoun, and Christy Jenkins Senior Photography as proud sponsors of Project Loudoun.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Charity Cornhole Tournament for Love Shack Dog Rescue

Charity Cornhole Tournament for Love Shack Dog Rescue
What difference do you want to make? If you are a dog lover, then you do not want to miss the opportunity to support Love Shack Dog Rescue who dedicates their lives to rescuing dogs that are marked to be "put down". Love Shack Dog Rescue has been saving dogs from kill shelters since May 2012. This very special non-profit just got a logo this year. Clearly, it is not about the money for owner Sabrina Droescher.

Charity Cornhole Tournament for Love Shack Dog Rescue
 *KK got adopted by this beautiful family. A very happy ending indeed.

Sabrina doesn't just rescue these beautiful dogs, she cares for them like family. She raises money for any medical expenses they might have, feeds them, and gives them some well deserved TLC. The ultimate goal? To adopt these deserving dogs to a loving home. To continue their mission, Love Shack Dog Rescue needs continual support, supplies, and monetary donations from regular folks like you and I. Can't make it to the event? Please mail Sabrina a check so she can buy the necessities for the dogs she rescues.

Where people can send monetary donation: 
---->PayPal is sdroescher@yahoo.com
Checks can be mailed to:
Love Shack Dog Rescue
P O Box 356
Capon Bridge, WV 26711
*Contributions are tax deductible.

Items that the Love Shack Dog Rescue needs:
Large Metal Dog Crates
Towels
Sheets
Paper towels
Spray bleach cleaner
Laundry detergent
Bleach
Dryer sheets
Large and  extra large dog cages
Stainless steel bowls
Stainless steel buckets
Disposable rubber gloves
Fish oil capsules
Benadryl
Dog treats
Rawhide/chewies
Flea and tick prevention
Charity Cornhole Tournament for Love Shack Dog Rescue
Thank you for your support and thank you to One.Love.Loudoun for their dedication and hard work within our community. Please come out to support their upcoming cornhole tournament benefiting Love Shack Dog Rescue. You can e-mail oneloveloudoun@gmail.com to reserve your spot for the cornhole tournament at Old Ox Brewery. One.Love.Loudoun works with and raises money for a variety of charities in Northern Virginia. The owner, Heather Elise, knows that "it takes a tribe" to make sure these charities have everything they need to continue making a difference in our communities! Virginia Bloggers Club is a proud One.Love.Loudoun sponsor.

Charity Cornhole Tournament for Love Shack Dog Rescue
Please visit our new blogger driven initiative Project Loudoun on FB for more information on how bloggers are getting involved and helping our communities...one post at a time.

Monday, February 1, 2016

The Best Valentine's Day Gifts in Northern VA

The Best Valentine's Day Gifts in Northern VA
Many small businesses are located in Northern Virginia, but none hold a "bon bon" to these special local businesses! Whether you are looking for a special gift for your significant other or just want to treat yourself(I won't judge), rest assured you are making an excellent purchasing decision either way! Get ready to feast your eyes on the best Valentine's Day gifts for your special someone right here in Northern Virginia. Drum roll please....

The Best Valentine's Day Gifts in Northern VA
Let's get down to business. Flowers reign supreme on Valentine's Day. Two words: Taffy Floral. You have a florist right here in Northern Virginia with a background in fashion design. Michelle Samson, the floral designer and curator of Taffy Floral, really knows how to make something look visually stunning! The texture and color achieved in her arrangements are second to no one. She works with fashion designers, brides-to-be, and regular folks like you and me. If you really want to impress that special someone this V-day then you must buy a floral arrangement from Taffy Floral.

After floral, next comes Oh So Good Organics. They have the best Organic soaps and essential oil candles this side of the Chesapeake! I recommend their Charcoal soap with floral notes of ylang ylang and their classic Organic lavender soap. Oh So Good Organics only uses top shelf natural and Organic ingredients in their soaps to moisturize, detox, and exfoliate your skin. Perhaps, you are a candle lover. Then I highly recommend their lavender essential oil candle. This lavender botanical soy candle leaves your entire room smelling of "natural lavender". You will swear you are standing in the middle of a lavender field. You better just get one of everything to be safe!

The Best Valentine's Day Gifts in Northern VA
Sweet treats are "without-a-doubt" a Valentine's Day staple. This year, forget the stale box of chocolates and run, skip, hop, jump, crawl(well...you get the picture) to Pure Love Macarons by Kim Moehnke. Her macarons are stunning to look at and even more delectable when it comes to taste! Kim has been told her macarons are as good as the ones you can get in France! Now that is high praise if I ever heard it. "Nom nom" awaits your taste buds this Valentine's Day. Tell your sweetie, "Don't forget the Pure Love Macarons!"

The Best Valentine's Day Gifts in Northern VA
And what is Valentine's Day without a fine bottle of local vino? The wines at Fabbioli Cellars will take your V-Day to new heights. Personally, it does not matter what you get, because every wine they carry is amazing(and that's no fluff)! I did not even like white wines before Fabbioli's converted me with their spectacular white wine known as "Something White". I also highly recommend their 2014 Chardonnay, which is buttery buttery heaven. Perhaps you like something a little sweeter? Try their Raspberry Merlot and pair it with a dark chocolate treat. Don't stop there, take your sweetheart straight to Fabbioli Cellars for a romantic date and don't forget to look around their new tasting room while you are there! Thank me later.

The Best Valentine's Day Gifts in Northern VA
What about some puppy love? Try Nana's Biskitz Dog Treats! My German Shepherd gives it two paws up. Woof.

I hoped you enjoyed this special edition Valentine's Day gift guide for Northern Virginia! This post comes from the heart. No money was earned from this post. I genuinely love all the businesses mentioned and have a passion to spread the word on their behalf. If you loved this gift guide, please share the love. Happy Valentine's Day everyone!