Be The Best.

Borscht and Berries

I usually make a shake for breakfast at least 3-4 times per week.  Chris loved them as well.  He wrote the recipe down last year and called them ‘Randy’s Jacked Shakes’….of course he did!  (recipe: 1-2 frozen bananas, 1 cup strawberries (frozen or fresh), 1-2 cups orange juice, 1 cup yogurt, 1 scoop protein powder (you can get at Costco), all measurements are adjusted to taste and consistency)

Anyways, as I was making the shakes one morning this week I realized what I was making them with.  Remember all that food at the funeral?  Well, through the assistance of amazing friends and family about 3 big bags of strawberries were sliced and frozen.  That’s what we were having for breakfast this week.  I thought again of all the generosity and amazing support.

Tonight I was busy downstairs and Ingrid came down about 6pm and said a relative (name protected!) had dropped off some hot borscht.  If you’ve never had borscht, you better get friendly with some Mennonites  (Toews, Friesen, Harder, Thiessen, Funk, Klassen etc etc) and have a bowl.  It is a vegetable based soup that absolutely hit the spot tonight.  Not only with the food aspect but another humble reminder of how many people have cared and are continuing to care for us.

We get through each day and are looking to the future, but any moment and many moments we have thoughts of our amazing, loving, wonderful son Chris who we will all see again one day.

Until then, we’ll have a shake, eat some borscht and keep helping each other one decision at a time.

Be The Best.

More soup for you!

The generosity of people in the past 13 days has been amazing and remarkable.  My sister Grace took on the major task of organizing food for the 500-800 people we felt may attend Chris’ service.  As the phone calls, emails, Facebook page kept building, we realized that we could have over 1,000 people at the funeral.  As it turned out over 1,500 attended for which our family is so amazingly grateful.  It was simply stunning.  More on that later, but back to the food!  Grace made some calls and things snowballed.  Companies like Tracy Cakes, Kin’s Farm MarketThe Butler Did It Catering, and colleagues from BCIT all came forward in a huge way.  Staff from Wardell chopped and cut vegetables for 6 hours straight. So many individual families, lacrosse moms, relatives, church groups and complete strangers (friends of friends of friends) kept providing food and wanting to help.  I am probably missing some because even those I mentioned weren’t looking for shout-outs…I just know who you are and we are humbled by your support!! THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!

Chris loved to eat.  Just last month we had come home from work and noticed the frying pan on the stove.  We asked

Chris piles a plate high at Christmas.

him what he had eaten after school.  “Nine eggs”, was his nonchalant reply.  After the funeral service, we were delighted to see hungry teenagers eat and talk and mingle…(oh and maybe text…that’s what they do!).  Here’s where the story gets even more interesting.  There was enough food that we needed to call in the Salvation Army.  Additionally, we brought food home to feed family and friends at the house, but even that was too much so we made contact with an organization that takes food to Vancouver’s downtown eastside.  But yet another twist.  My sister Grace who started all this, went home to Vernon and made soup from vegetable leftovers.  She knew of a Grandma (unrelated) in Vernon who had just returned from Prince George and a family funeral of her own.  Her grandson had lost his life serving with our Canadian forces in Afghanistan.  Grandma’s favourite soup?  Cream of celery.   What soup had Grace made?  I think you know.

The generosity of people was overwhelming.  I wanted to tell you that beyond feeding hungry teenagers and the masses of supporters who stood with us on April 1, that spirit of generosity fed literally hundreds of the poorest and hungriest around us and provided a moving connection with a Grandma suffering a family loss in Vernon.

We will simply never understand the extent of our actions.  Be The Best.  Another amazing example of what that means.  Go change the world, one bowl of soup at a time!