2013 Operation Smile Final Mile – Virginia Beach, Virginia

2013 Operation Smile Final Mile - Virginia Beach, Virginia

The Operation Smile Final Mile is part of The Shamrock Sportsfest, held every March in Virginia Beach, Va. The Operation Smile Final Mile is designed to teach children the importance of exercise, commitment and helping children born with facial deformities.

Over the last five years, Final Mile participants have raised enough donations for 1,000 children suffering from cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities to receive free corrective surgery and new smiles!

Georgie and Gwen are proud to support Operation Smile. We’ve teamed up to provide fundraising opportunities and can’t wait to show you our latest creations. Stay tuned and we’ll share more on how YOU can get involved.

Meanwhile, get ready to RUN!

For more information on the Operation Smile Final Mile, click here: http://www.operationsmile.org/get_involved/student-youth-programs/final-mile.html


game day!


2011 began with some reservation on the part of my dear, sweet daughter.  we had just announced to the kids that we were going to be moving across the country…and while this was an exciting prospect for our little guys (who were going to get to make the switch from cowboys to surfer dudes), the big kids were not near as thrilled…especially georgie.

this was, pretty much, going to ruin her life.  she agreed to join us provided the following conditions were met:

  •  she would drop out of school and sell sno-cones on the beach
  • she would receive a pet tiger
  • she would also receive a purple flying unicorn which could fly her back to texas whenever she wished

being the awesome mom that i am (hee hee) i immediately agreed to all conditions and for the next few months we lived in this fantasy land where these things would actually take place.   of course, somewhere between texas and virginia, we’ve come back to reality and life goes on.

volleyball season officially begins with a scrimmage tonight.  it’s nice to see a smile on georgie’s face again.  she’s back in the game in more ways than one and that makes my heart happy 🙂

check out the fun magnets we worked on for the girls…their jersey numbers & some sporty phrases!  love how they turned out.  

little piece of trivia:  my husband and i were both patriots in high school (he in virginia, me in ohio).  as a result of this move, austin & georgie are now patriots as well.  how cool is that? 

tonight begins a new chapter.  GO LADY PATRIOTS!   hope it’s a GREAT season.


georgie and i have known monica & her family for about ten years now.  carson was a baby.  georgie was just a wee girl.  and monica’s only daughter, leah, was a gangly preteen.  it wasn’t long after meeting that monica adopted her precious baby faith.  in my mind she will ALWAYS be baby faith even though she’s certainly no baby now 🙂 

through all the crazy journeys we’ve been on, one thing has always remained constant:  monica and i are both crazy as they come.  (oops, did i just type that?  hee hee).  actually, what i meant to say is:  i am continously inspired by monica’s faith and her passion.  her life is a rollercoaster ride of twists and turns, ups and downs…it’s like a good book that you can’t put down…never knowing what the next page will reveal…and while  it’s fascinating to watch…i can’t EVEN IMAGINE what it’s like to actually LIVE it.

but LIVE IT is exactly what she and her family are doing.  her oldest son just celebrated his one year anniversary, leah is a gorgeous college student, faith is a well adjusted young lady.  and just when doug and monica could finally coast, they have instead adopted two very active, very handsome little guys from ethiopia.  no empty nest syndrome for this couple 🙂

yesterday monica told me that i simply HAD to check out the THIRD DAY — ‘CHILDREN OF GOD’ video.  i did.  i’d heard the song many times, but watching the images was an entirely different experience.  interesting timing with it being father’s day weekend.

if only we could TRULY grasp that we are, indeed, children of God.  and if only we could TRULY grasp that God is GOOD.   it would change our lives.  it would change the world.  if only. 

check out the video…and let the change begin:

at monica’s request, georgie and i have begun working on some adoption magnets. thank you, my friend, for continuing to live it. i am so very blessed to call you friend.

xoxo, gwen


georgie and gwen.  mother & daughter.  designers & friends.

you should know that georgie and i are completely outnumbered in our house full of boys.   it’s been this way for a long time.  there may be MORE of THEM but we know how to stand our ground in this house 🙂

everyone warned me about the ups and downs of raising a teenage girl.  the hormones.  the fits of rage.  the rebellion.  but georgie and i have not experienced that (yet).  i love this girl more than life itself.  i’m so proud of who she is…of how she is…we’ve gone through a LOT of adventures together…we’ve been challenged, we’ve been stretched.  and through it all, we learn.  we grow.  we laugh.  and we cry.

we are entering a brand new chapter of our lives.  no teenaged girl wants to move across the country at the end of her freshman year of high school.  no teenaged girl wants to leave her friends behind.      no teenaged girl wants to have to start all over in a new place.  and neither does georgie.

but that’s exactly what we’ve done, the result of a new job for my husband, her daddy.

one night in texas (prior to the move) a friend of ours had offered to come help us pack.  somehow we ended up crafting into the wee hours of the morning.  my nine foot island was COVERED in scrapbook paper and modge podge, glitter and rhinestones. 

that night i learned something about georgie:  the girl has creativity OOZING out of her pores.  i’ve always been creative…and i KNEW that she had inherited this.  but i had never really seen her in action like i did that night.  not only that, but it also gave us LOTS of opportunity to just chat about all the changes…the good, the bad, the ugly.  it’s a night i’ll never forget.

and it got me thinking that maybe it would be good to continue on with the creativity and see where it takes us.  we’re definitely going to have some free time this summer and it will be good to keep our hands & minds busy, our lines of communication open.  we’ve got all sorts of ideas and projects swirling around in our heads…for now, we’re starting with our super fun washer necklaces.   we’re going to hit the streets and see if we can’t get some of the beach boutiques to sell them for us…and we’re also going to have them available via facebook for our friends & family.  stay tuned for some photos from our fun-filled, beach-inspired creativity sessions 🙂

we are VERY EXCITED to launch this new venture.  for so many reasons.  one of the MOST exciting reasons is that we have decided that we’d like to use this venture to support OPERATION SMILE.  if you haven’t heard of them, you should definitely check them out.  http://www.operationsmile.org/index.html  did you know that it only takes $240 to change a child’s life FOREVER by providing the funds for cleft palate surgery?  a very dear friend of ours had a baby boy that was born with a cleft palate & she and her family do a lot to support the cause of this great organization.   OPERATION SMILE is located right here in the virginia beach area.  i hope that georgie and i will be able to regularly send off donations to them as a result of our new venture. 

and i hope, more than anything, that we will continue to strengthen our bond as we tackle this new chapter of our lives.  won’t you join us in our new adventure?  we’d love to hear from you!