So I'm from the big city, I've only seen a small handful of parades, I've attended even less, and I've never even come close to being in one. But this year I dove in headfirst to all of the above! Since I am the new activities chairman in the ward and the Bishop said he would like the church to be better known in the community and the "Lights On" Parade was coming up I did something I never thought I would do; I signed the church up for a float. Yes, add this to my list of "nevers". How on Earth do you build a float? But that's what life is all about right? Just going for it!! Go Big or Go Home! I always say. So that's what I did. I donated all my Saturdays in November to the planning, organizing and constructing of a float representing the church. The theme was Candy Cane Lane. We went with the sub-theme of "Sweet Treats". We constructed larger than life candy canes, gingerbread men, peppermint twists and cupcakes. We made an over-sized, old fashioned stove and had tons of lights. I was pretty happy with the results despite the fact that I doubted my ideas at every turn (an ongoing problem I've gotta work on). I was so happy with all the people who were willing to volunteer time and resources. We have a great ward! So willing, and so cheerful. Bishop Starkweather is my hero! Our float would have been pretty sad and pathetic without him. He is incredibly generous and able. Along with his time, he let us use his 25' flatbed trailer, his truck (which he drove for us) his generator, his scrap wood, his Christmas lights and other Christmas decorations, and his tools and equipment. Truly a remarkable man!
Here is the evolution of our float
The Bishop's Granddaughter got to ride in the cab with Grandpa.
Carter and Christy got to ride on the float. Carter fell asleep in the staging area and woke up at the end... but look how cute he is
Some other cool things:
-Michael Hanson showing up on my doorstep with 4 precut cardboard gingerbread men. (I thought he was just bringing me cardboard)
- Every week, even though I had no clue what I was doing, there was almost always something for everyone to do despite their ages and interests
-Liz McMullen being able to help from home using her Cricut and making the cutest signs ever
-Red Duct Tape - wow was that EVER a time saver
- I have the best husband on the planet who gave up his time (and a few golf games) to help. He had some really great ideas and ingenuity. My own little MacGyver.
-A terrific ward - so, so willing and supportive even if my ideas and methods were a little crazy
And I would like to dedicate this float to 2 very unsuspecting people.
First: Dianne - my mogul friend and former business partner. If it wasn't for all the trade show booths we built over the years I'm sure I would have crumbled under the task.
Second: Aunt Sharon - my aunt whom I've always admired and wanted to be just like. Several years ago we visited them (in small town Henefer, UT) and she was - unless I'm mistaken - in charge of their 4th of July parade. I didn't know then, and I don't know now, how she did it and still kept her cool. But I just kept channeling my inner Sharon and told myself, "If she could do that, I can certainly do this."