Spiritwood Foundation Blog

News and updates from the foundation

A Summer Update

Hi Everyone. I am so excited to update you on what our Foundation is doing this Summer. Again we have donated to the Minnesota Veterans Home Silver Bay for their Summer Concert Series. We have also donated to the Minnesota Veterans Home Fergus Falls for all of their annual activities. We donated the funds to Veterans On The Lake in Ely to fix their hoist equipment that enables wheelchair-bound Vets to board their boats. And we have donated funds to the Minnesota Veterans Home Minneapolis for their fishing and boating outings. I am so excited about that! This is amazing synergy for me. My daddy's passions were: his military service (a WWII hero), music, and the water - in that order. He was an avid fisherman. He always had a boat. They always sank :-( poor daddy. But right up to his death, all he wanted us to do was take him to the water's edge. And he would sit there calmly, watching the water, breathing in the ocean air. My deepest, darkest regret is that I didn't make the time each day to go to his assisted living facility and do that - take him to the water. I was too busy with work. Ugh. So now, with daddy watching, and in his name through our Foundation, we can help our veterans afflicted with this horrible disease - with music programs, fishing trips, and yes - repaired hoists so wheelchair bound vets (like my dad was) can get on boats.

We continue to contribute to Northwoods Partners with quarterly donations that fund their caregiver programs. And we also funded a Minnesota Memory Care Tour this Summer, with performances scheduled in assisted living facilities around the state.

We will again be at Blueberry Arts Fest in Ely this Friday, Saturday, and Sunday - selling our amazing sheets to raise money for our Foundation so we can continue to make a difference in the trenches with this horrible disease. Thank you for your support!

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Where We Are Going From Here

Hi Everyone...

It is now 2019 and there is so much to update you on. Sorry I haven't kept you informed as we go. We have been so very busy! For now check out the updates in the Our Impact section on this site. There are new photos and lots of new news.

We are creating ripples in the water - reaching out to all of Minnesota to do what we can for Memory Care Facilities, Minnesota Veterans Homes around the state, and other initiatives. And of course, Pat and I are continuing to stage and perform shows benefiting our Foundation.

Stay tuned here as we will be having a continuing conversation with you via some cool technology that this Hippie is learning. 

Thank you for being here and being a part of what we do.

Talk soon...

Blessings,

Donna

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Remember When Magical Musical Happening - A Smash!

After months of preparation, rehearsal, ticket sales (and anxious anticipation) our 2 Remember When shows (Friday August 7th and Saturday August 8th) have come and gone - and they were a huge success! Both performances were sold out. And everyone loved it! Audiences rocked with performers on stage and off. It was a real happening.

Thank you to all who supported the show. The profits will go back out into the community to help families struggling with Alzheimer's Disease.

More to come - with pictures.

Blessings...

Donna

Director, Spiritwood Foundation

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The Journey We Are On

Hi. Thank you for joining me here.

Last weekend Pat and I were at the Land Of The Loon festival in Virginia, MN. Venues like this give me an opportunity to connect with you in person. I am inspired by the stories of the people I meet - people from all over the country but traveling the same road. Our common narrative shapes my understanding of why I do what I do with this Foundation, and cements my commitment to continue. I want to keep the conversation alive - to be that voice in the wilderness that does not shrink from a daunting and unpleasant subject - to demonstrate empathy - make a connection.

At the festival I met a lovely woman who is now facing the same horror I experienced with my dad. We talked - we connected. I received the following email from her:

Hi Donna,
I met you at the Land of The Loons when I bought some CD's. I was telling you about my father that has Lewi Body Dementia and all he has is his music, it seems to help him make it thru the days.  My dad was a very loving southern gentleman before  this horrific disease got a hold of him. I saw you on Saturday at the Land of the Loons and like you I was also given the power to help him when he was not able to.  Well that following Monday I had to place him in Assisted Living because he had fallen and is badly bruised and I could no longer watch my dad get hurt any longer. It was a difficult decision but I needed him where he was safe.  I cried almost the whole day while we moved him but he just sat there listening to his music and it helped him tremendously.  He wakes up and goes to sleep to his to his music.  So I am just wondering how much it is to have you perform at this assisted living in Nashwauk. All the people in this assisted living would love your music as much as I do.  The funny part of this story is I was walking in the rain having a bad day because I hurt for my dad and all of the sudden I heard this voice but I could not see anyone singing. My husband must of thought I was nuts because I was trying to following this voice to see where it was coming from and low and behold I saw your husband singing like a angel. I bought 2 CD's and played them for my father and he loved them.  Thank you so much for what you do with your music. They may not remember it but I will always have the memories of my father listening to the music.

Julie


Thank you, Julie, for taking the time to write this note. We will certainly bring music to your father.

And to you out there - I look forward to hearing from you. We are here to help.

Blessings...

Donna

Director, Spiritwood Foundation

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There is so much to share with you...

Thank you for visiting our blog. Keep checking here as we will be filling you in on what is happening with our Foundation.

There is so much we wanted to communicate to you from this site. But mostly we wanted you to know our heart. Everyone on our board of directors has had some kind of relationship with this dreaded disease. There are so many heart-breaking stories. We are certain that many of you have them too. I have received countless letters and emails telling these stories. All loss, all disease, breaks hearts. But Alzheimer's tears a heart to shreds because the loss of your loved one is fragmented - creating tiny shards that relentlessly pierce your heart when another fragment disappears. You desperately try protect your heart, just so you can get through another day. It is a new reality. A new normal. And it separates you from the world. Who can relate to this - thing - that has become a day in your life? Who can understand the courage, the resolve it takes to not constantly weep? That is why throughout this site you see caregivers referred to as heroes. My mom was my hero.

I look forward to hearing from you, and seeing you at our events. I am deeply grateful for your interest in our Foundation. May you never need us. But if you do, we are here.

Blessings,

Donna

Director, Spiritwood Foundation

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