29 November, 2007

Lost and Found from Sunset Hills Lighted Christmas Ball Workshop

Anne and I found some cool stuff after the dust settled! See if you recognize any of the items.

Back row, left to right:

2 nice pairs of brown cloth gloves. I know they're warm cause I wore them when I hitched up the trailer when Marlene and Anne and I took the food to Urban Ministries.

one small, tightly wrapped ball with clear, red, and green lights. Not all the red lights burn, which is maybe why it got left behind. Sad. Claimed by Emmett M.

one very cool cylinder-shaped ornament (think, one big fat roll of paper towels, gold plated ) gold bulbs, not all of which burn, which is maybe why this one got left too. This ornament isn't a brand new one because it has a little bit of white nylon line tied on from last year. This definately can be fixed...and they don't make gold bulbs like these anymore, so this ball might be collectable. Claimed by Emmett M.

Front row, left to right:

1 left glove, the kind with sticky rubber dots all over,

1 right glove, the kind the real cowboys wear when they're driving in fence posts and working with 2'wide lengths of chicken wire,

1 right glove, soft leather, maybe the kind a city cowboy (cowgirl maybe?) might wear, someone not accustomed to hard work,

1 very nice pair Wiss aircraft shears. I know these are nice because I used them, and I'll keep on using them till they're returned to their rightful owner.

1 nice pair of garden clippers, the kind, if my wife caught me using to cut chicken wire with she would have snatched me bald-headed. Claimed by Scott S.

Too bad the bucket truck didn't show up in the lost and found. Maybe Bravo Signs will be over this way again soon.

Remember, glow is good.

27 November, 2007

Slide Show from Margo Bender

I have to laugh when I think of Sunday (this is Anne writing) Jonathan has this saying 'what if our best idea turns out 100 times better than we think it will?' He applies this question to many things we are pondering whether to do or not. He wondered this about the workshop 5 years ago when we first ventured out in it. I must say, it has quickly surpassed this 'what if' test of worthiness. The fun and growth year to year has been exponential. It's rewarding whenever we hear friends say, "we're going to do this in our neighborhood."

J-Bird and the Soul Central Band took the whole event to the next, next level. A big round of applause goes to Emmett, Lee, Graham and Liam Morphis, and Emmett's Mom, Linda, for making this event memorable in every way. Neighbors brought tables, camp chairs, chicken wire, snacks, drinks, cider, and more. Twin City Brokerage supplied two awesome tents and Bravo Signs designed our banner.

If you have about 5 minutes, click on the photo to the right and view some of the fun we had Sunday on Ridgeway Drive (when finished viewing Margo's slideshow, just click your Internet Explorer back button to return to the blog. Her slide show is a combination of stills and videosk so turn up your volume for even more fun. Enjoy the slideshow and see family and friends having fun all afternoon long. Over the years, Margo has taken more wonderful photos of the lighted Christmas Balls than anyone I know. Her enthusiasm for this project is contagious...and beautiful. THANKS for sharing Margo!

26 November, 2007

What it Is

What it Is, originally uploaded by cssmith.

by the end of the day:

1. 637 brand new boxes of 100 count mini lights were opened and tested. not one bulb in 63,700 bulbs was bad. (637 boxes of 100 count mini lights plugged end to end would stretch all the way from the corner of Ridgeway Drive to the middle of A&T State University.

2. 1100 feet of 2' wide chicken wire (enough to cover Ridgeway Drive from one end to the other) was unwound and cut into 45" lengths.

3. four hours later, 283 newly made lighted Christmas balls left the Workshop Tent, ready to go new homes. This is "build and release" at it's finest,

4. One dozen kids under 5 played on, in, and under a 3'x4'x6' pile of freshly raked leaves, flattening the pile completely.

5. 5 string-tied limes were launched from a potato cannon (Kablamm!) in front of an expectant crowd. 4 of 5 limes sailed beautifuly over the targeted tree limb only to get stuck on the way down to earth. 1 of the 5 smacked a tree limb 80' high and blew into a million pieces. zero for five but hey, we're in this for fun. and we got to see a lime vaporize on impact. cool.

6. One 6'x8' trailer got filled 2 feet high (557 pounds!) with canned and non perishable food for Greensboro Urban Ministry's food pantry.

7. $735 in monetary donations was given to Greensboro Urban Ministry - You could look at this way, each strand of lights wrapped on a Lighted Christmas ball generated $1.15 for Urban Ministry.

8. Jonathan learned to operate a bucket truck.

9. J-Bird and his band delighted 300+ new friends.

10. Ridgeway Drive was officially renamed "Soul Central Avenue."

11. Neighbors committed to installing and overseeing food collection boxes for Urban Ministry for the month of December.

Kids lead the way (click on photo to launch slideshow)

IMG_0079.JPG, originally uploaded by cssmith. (click on photo above to launch the slideshow, click on back to return to blog)

Play comes natural to kids. All adults need to do is follow, the kids will show us how it's done. Thanks, Scott, for the great shots!

Sunset Hills in action

The trailer was the holding place for the Food Bank items brought by those coming to make lighted Christmas balls.

J-Bird and the Soul Central Band provided lively music to keep the fingers flying while bending chicken wire and wrapping lights.

I have many more pictures and I will either post some here or link to another site with photos.

21 November, 2007

A neighborhood helps neighbors

in the spirit of fun and fellowship, Sunset Hills neighbors gather the Sunday after Thanksgiving for an afternoon of play, artistry, and adding to the beauty. in this, our 5th year, we've partnered with one of our community's most trusted stewards, Greensboro Urban Ministry, asking all Lighted Christmas Ball Workshop participants (and the larger community who enjoys them) to offer monetary and canned food gifts to Greensboro Urban Ministry.

and so to help fight hunger in Greensboro, click here for a suggested shopping list of items you could bring to the party; if you can donate money, please click here or you can bring your check payable to Greensboro Urban Ministry. and throughout the season, encourage your friends and neighbors to give. together we can be a neighborhood helping neighbors.

consider this: on an average day at Greensboro Urban Ministry -

• 150 people registered in the Emergency Assistance Program for financial assistance, emergency food, or free clothing and/or household goods.

• 26 emergency food orders filled from the Food Bank, helping to feed approximately 80 people; 18 non-profit agencies receive food from the Food Bank to feed the hungry.

• 332 people fed a hot meal at Potter's House Community Kitchen.

• 100 homeless individuals provided shelter and supportive services at Weaver House.

• 15 homeless adults and 28 homeless children provided shelter at Pathways Center.

• 30 individuals/families provided spiritual counseling through the Chaplaincy Program and 10 individuals recovering from substance abuse through the Manfred Gaiser Substance Abuse Recovery Program.

• 32 formerly homeless single individuals provided case management and support services and 23 families (26 adults, 58 children) reside at Partnership Village, a transitional housing community.

• 102 individuals provided Volunteer Services in all areas of the Ministry.