This week we got treated to one of the most incredible and memorable nights I think I have ever had. Kayla and Anthony said it was the best night of their lives. I just feel so blessed to have spent it with three of my favorite people in the world while we were all healthy! That was the icing on the cake.
Last week I got a call from our local ALSAC rep, Meredith. She let me know that the Hoops for St. Jude campaign is currently going on and wanted to know if we would be interested in going to a Warriors game. The warriors star player, David Lee, had recently visited St. Jude and fell in love with the kids and all that the hospital is doing to save lives. He was so impressed that he doubled his normal donation. Since learning more about David, I now know that his best friend is a two time cancer survivor... so finding a cure is near and dear to his heart. We were honored to be the family to represent St Jude and mostly to THANK him in person. Meredith told us it would be a fun night, but we were not prepared as to just how fun it would actually be!
We arrived at the Oracle Arena in Oakland at 4:00pm and were greeted by Meredith and a rep for the Warriors who escorted us in through a private VIP/Players entrance only. There were security guards standing by waiting for the players to arrive. We knew exactly which ones were players as they arrived because they had to duck under the door way. We walked through a metal detector and made our way onto the court through the same tunnel entrance that the players run through at the beginning of the game. We tried to take it all in because even just that was a once in a life time experience!
The door in the background says "Players Entrance Only"
Posing in front of David Lee's pic
Here we are walking down the very private VIP entrance onto the court. SO cool!
Once we walked out onto the court we were able to sit and watch the players and the cheerleaders warming up. Just thinking back as to how awesome that was makes me smile. A few of the cooler players made time to come up and shake our hands (I got hugs) and say hello. Kayla got miked and she was followed around by a videographer and photographer. They were sure to capture all of the moments. And there were many.
Kayla getting miked
You can't get much closer than this...
I have a hard time picking my favorite pictures from this night. They were all moments I am glad are captured in time through the eye of a camera :) They are for sure in my heart forever.
Just when this was getting too fun, we were brought out special gifts. All of us! Kayla and Anthony got backpacks filled with warriors gear. Shirts, hats, key chains, necklaces, cups and more. So so soooo generous and cool of them! Before the excitement of their gifts could even ware off out came David Lee to meet us. All I can say is WOW. What a NICE guy! Such a sweet heart. He had big hugs for all of us and insisted we come back for a private tour of the locker room and more. We got to see where the guys get taped up, ice themselves, and I even accidentally saw someone in their underoos. Oops. He didn't seem phased at all. Everyone was all smiles as David brought us back into meet his coach. We saw the dry erase board and all the cubicles where they strategize during the game. It truly was a once in a life time moment. I wish I had more pics from that part. David brought us over to his locker where he presented a ball that he autographed for Kayla and a jersey of his that he autographed too! Pretty awesome, huh? Kayla's favorite part? Autographing a St. Jude Tee-shirt for David . She really loved that part!
Serious Warrior fans for LIFE
Anthony took this shot... we do LOVE St. Jude
So much in common. Not only is he a Taurus and a Warrior... but he's also a LEFTY like Kayla! Love you DL #10 :)
This is where the players get taped up pre-game or looked after if they get injured
"Thank you for donating money to St. Jude Love, Kayla Rose Dehnert"
We watched and cheered as it was a VERY close game the whole time.
Just as the first quarter ended, we were surprised and pampered yet again with snacks galore
courtesy of the Warriors
Ultimately the Warriors won and our girl CONKED out. Not Anthony. 10:30pm? Nope. Not him!
What a wonderful night for these Warriors!!!
I have missed blogging. It's been such therapy to me during all of this. Kayla has been continuing her piano lessons. She truly is good! I cannot wait until her recital. I promise to post the date/time so that if any local friends want to come and cheer her on they can. We would love to have as many people come as possible so stay tuned! Kayla's next scans are at the end of April. For now, we are just happily doing the grind. I like the grind. This new normal. I hope it never gets interrupted again.
Please say a special prayer and or light candles for my former co-workers daughter Amanda. She is 15 and has been diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma. Since I last blogged, two amazing warriors that I knew personally gained their wings. Ryan and then Matthew. These boys were amazing and they are missed terribly. I do know their parents... and these boys lives will not be in vein. Their legacy will live on. Their momma's won't stop fighting to spread this awful truth. Neither will I.