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Friday, November 11, 2011

We hit the paper again!

Students Supporting Students

Elk Mound High School students and members of the group Students Supporting Students will be collecting donations for Ronald McDonald House in Rochester, Minn., and Faith Lodge in Danbury.

When Emily Stokke decided as an Elk Mound High School freshman she wanted to get more involved in her community, joining Students Supporting Students seemed like a no-brainer.

Three years later, Stokke, now a 17-year-old high school senior, can rattle off a number of activities - such as promoting safety among young students and buying gifts for needy families - she has taken part in during her time with the high school group that helps students and community members.

"I think it's so much more rewarding going shopping for others," Stokke said about the group's holiday shopping effort, her favorite of the organization's many activities.

These days Stokke is SSS co-chairwoman and is preparing for the group's next opportunity to make a positive difference. Beginning Monday, the group will collect items for charities in Minnesota and Wisconsin that supported its adviser, Randi Stanley, during her son's illness and after his death.

Stanley's son, Brextin, died in May 2010 before his third birthday after a 2007 diagnosis of infantile spasms, a rare form of epilepsy. During Brextin's medical treatments and after his death, the Stanley family received extensive support from Ronald McDonald House in Rochester, Minn., and Faith Lodge in Danbury.

"We always encourage the kids to do and act out what (they have learned through SSS), but this time we're actually putting forth something extra," said Stanley, who is one of the group's advisers and works as an Elk Mound business and information technology teacher.

Since 2001, Students Supporting Students has been an active organization at Elk Mound High School that focuses on asset-building, Stanley said. Asset-building centers around 40 developmental assets, such as integrity and social justice. This month group members are finding ways to help others.

"We are basically a group that focuses on giving back to others as you would unto yourself," Stanley said, adding that more than 90 high school students are involved.

SSS members are encouraged to lead by example and to make happy, healthy decisions. The organization is made possible through grants, which Stanley's fellow adviser, Peggy Bodenburg, writes. More than 90 students are involved.

Stokke said she has grown as a person through her involvement in the organization.

"I'm learning to be a lot more helpful to others and not be afraid to lend a hand to those in need," she said.

Breann Schossow can be reached at 715-833-9203.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Faith Lodge!

We were so LUCKY to have the opportunity to stay at Faith Lodge in Danbury Wisconsin. It is sponsored by the Ronald McDonald Foundation. In order to stay there you have to qualify in three ways: 1) lost a child under the age of 18 within the last 3 years 2) Have a terminally ill child under 18 3) lost a son or daughter while serving in active duty

Private parties can reserve the lodge as well. While you stay at the lodge you are able to connect with families that can relate to you and your family. They group the three categories together. So the week that we stayed allowed us to bond with 4 other families who have lost a child under 18 as well.

I would love to go back next year - you are only able to attend the lodge up to 3 years after the passing of your child. Your first visit is based on a donation to the lodge then the price goes up the following times. They offer group sessions and wonderful bonding activities. I truly enjoyed our time there and it was real comforting to be surrounded by such caring families!

Here are some of their children's webpages:

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Please vote for our son's memory garden!

I have just entered Brextin's Memory Garden into a local contest - if we win - I could win prizes to help to enlarge his garden in the back of our home - you are allowed to vote - one time per day. The contest ends July 20th - I currently have around 60 votes - but the winner so far has over 300 - please please please help me out - please post this to any of your other support groups -

You will need to register first - they then approve your account - by emailing you then you may return to their site and vote (remember one time per day) until July 20th. Ours is currently #21 out of 23 entries - look for the garden that is filled with SUNFLOWERS - plus the image of our beautiful son peaking through. I did include a description under the garden entry as well.

Thank you so much for the love and support!!!

Just click on the link below!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

We are sadly approaching our one year anniversary . . .

This coming Friday will be our one year anniversary of our son's passing - we are planning a couple of events to honor his life.

  • t-shirts in his memory are being created

  • we plan on visiting an eagle center near us - to remind us he is soaring high above and watching over us

  • lighting wishing lanterns into the nightly sky so they can reach the skies of heaven!

  • a memory ad will be placed in this Sunday's newspaper which is Mother's Day - which is fitting since he was born on Mother's Day 4 years ago!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Montage of Brextin's life

You can create a 30 second Montage for "FREE" I had a very hard time limiting the video to just 30 seconds. Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Saturday, January 15, 2011

In memory of Brextin (car decals)

I found a lady on ebay - her auction was actually for a soldier in the service or someone with breast cancer but I just sent a message to inquire if the ribbon could be purple and have it read epilepsy - and for $4.99 a piece I was really pleased - I ordered 6 for family members but I won't be offended if they don't want one - they are basically a vinyl sticker that was real easy to put on - it said they are easy to remove as well. I kinda think the sticker resembles that he is always with us - even in the car!