Saturday, March 27, 2010

Ashley & Jay's Save-the-Dates

I would like to share with you a special save-the-date I recently designed but in order to do so I first need to tell you about how the paths of this couple and myself crossed. This past summer I was meeting with three other small business owners in order to do some networking. Natasha Bansfield owns Natasha Bansfield Events, Heidi Nicholson and Lisa Almeida own Bella Sera Bridal, that afternoon we talked more about giving back than we did about networking. In just a short amount of time Reason to Give was born. Our first project would be a North Shore Wedding Giveaway to a deserving couple that was experiencing some type of hardship. All of us reached out to numerous vendors and to this day are stunned at the amount of people who stepped up to the plate for no other reason than to give. I am proud to share that we now have every inch of this wedding covered by donations. The entries were narrowed down to three possible finalists who would be interviewed by us resulting in the winning couple being surprised with the news on Valentine's Day.

It was a Tuesday night when we went to Amesbury to visit the first couple Ashley and Jay. The excitement of getting engaged on the fourth of July was quickly over shadowed that September when Jay collapsed. Shortly after they discovered he had a mass on his brain. He underwent emergency brain surgery as well as months of radiation. As we all sat there in Ashley's parents home that night we listen to them tell their story of what they had been through but as hard as it was to hear what they endured it was so easy to hear the love they had for each other. Her eyes lit up when she told us how they had met when she was sixteen and how lucky she was to find the love of her life so early. Ashley and Jay are two of the most genuine people I have ever met and as we left their house that night we all agreed on one thing, they are the type of people that make you want to do more.

So on Valentine's Day we showed up in a white limo armed with their photographer, florist and the local media to tell them the good news! As the minutes went on numerous family members arrived to share in the excitement and joy for Ashley and Jay. It was at that moment that the four us realized we were not just changing their lives but the lives of all their family and friends. Our goal with this giveaway was not so much about giving the wedding to this deserving couple but giving them a new story. More often than not the hardship you may be experiencing begins to define you and of all sudden you lose what you use to be. We at Reason to Give wanted to give this couple a new story.

Not long after that I met with Ashley and Jay to start designing their save-the-dates. I came up with my vision the night we interviewed them, my ahha moment came when she told us how they met and how lucky she was to find the love of her life at sixteen. My immediate thought was how she gave him the key to her heart. The key is a timeless symbol of love, success, and opportunity. By giving Ashley and Jay this wedding we essentially are giving them the key to unlock a new chapter in their life. The save-the-dates went out this past Friday and so the new chapter begins......

I shared Ashley and Jay's story with my paper company Envelopments, and like so many others they too had a reason to give. They were generous enough to donate all the card stock for these save-the-dates which further supports my belief that there are far more people in this world doing good than you think.


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