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October 2012

Dearest Beloved Friends, 


As many of you know I love quotes. The one I think of every single day is by Ben Franklin when he said, 

"I will act as though what I do makes a difference."

But the quote today that made me smile was this one as it pretty much defines my life...
Oh crap
(Reprinted without permission.)        Card by Expressions from Hallmark "Saturdays"


As you know October is National Down Syndrome Awareness Month and since we have the greatest kids in the whole world we wanted to Celebrate Down Syndrome this month with two great events.  

"Through the Eyes of Love"
 (Alex Hinton son of Proud Parents, Adrienne and Matt in Prescott. PS Matt is a Pediatrician so if you live in that neck of the woods, tell him "David's Mom" said "Hi.")

The FIRST event is "Through the Eyes of Love." This will be a panel discussion by individuals who have Down syndrome who will share about their experiences in life. 


Those speaking will include: Hope Coates and her adorable husband Jared Carter. This sweet couple were married on April 25, 2009.   xoxo (Did I mention Hope and Jared both have Down syndrome?)  Heart icon



Hope and Gina
Hope and Gina
Hope and Michelle Jung
Hope and Michelle Jung


Hope and Jared.
Hope and Jared

Also on our panel will be a young man I adore, Parker Bradshaw (15) along with his sister (Proud Parents, Kay and Mark Bradshaw); and my own very cute son David (28) and his best friend since Kindergarten, Blake Miracle. 

Parker young
Parker Bradshaw in his younger years.
Blake David POUND IT
Blake Miracle and David pound it!

Parker and Jeremy
Parker and Jeremy
Blake, David, and Tom
Blake, David, and Tom
 I know this is a meeting you will not want to miss! Just so you know the location will be where we always meet but we will be on the 3rd floor near the nursery that will be provided. xoxo


 Special Panel:  Down Syndrome in Real Life
East Valley Parent Support Meeting
All are welcome!

Who:      Anyone who loves someone who has Down syndrome
What:    Through the Eyes of Love, Panel Discussion

               TUESDAY October 23, 2012
                7:00 pm -9:00 pm
Where:  Mesa Student Services Building
               1025 N Country Club, Mesa, AZ      


Cost:      Free!  Respite is provided. 


Please RSVP to or call 480-926-6500 so we know how many to plan on.  Light refreshments will be served. 

The next event is the annual

  Pumpkin patch

at Desert Botanical Gardens!!


Josh and the pumpkin
Josh and the pumpkin
Who: All children with Down syndrome and their families
What:   The Great Pumpkin Festival
When:  Wednesday October 24, 2012 
             8:30 am - 12:00 pm
Where: Desert Botanical Gardens
              1201 N. Galvin Parkway, 

              Phoenix, AZ 85008 (map)

Cost:      FREE with RSVP by October 15th to reserve your spaces. 

Details: You MUST RSVP for this fun festival that is dedicated to families of children with special needs so you can get in. RSVP By Oct 15, 2012 to info@sharingds.orgInclude the number total in your party and the ages of the children attending with you. We will email you more detailed information as to where to meet us to check in upon your arrival the day of the event.


Every autumn the Desert Botanical Garden's Great Pumpkin Festival is one of the Valley's favorite places to find that special pumpkin. 


Take a hayride out to the Garden's pumpkin patch, where each child 12 and under can choose their own free pumpkin. 


Get lost in the Amazing Hay Bale Maze, visit with friendly animals in the petting zoo, enjoy lively country western entertainment, carnival style games, and visit the Butterfly Pavilion!  


Thank you beloved parents for all you are and all you do for your beloved children. Your love for your children means the world to me. 


A dear friend of mine said something very profound that has stayed with me since the moment he said it. He said, "The two greatest days of your life are the day you were born...and the day you discover why you were born. " -Randal Wright


For me it is in being a mother to my adorable seven (now grown) children but especially for this one little boy, David, who is teaching me every single day of my life what matters most. I know your babies will do that for you as well. I would like to tell each of you, "God Bless" but I can see He already has! 

All my love,


David's Mom (aka Gina Johnson)   


PS.  Just FYI... our final meetings to close this year for Sharing will be:


...On Thursday November 15, 2012 our East Chapter parent meeting will be two wonderful guests, the "Ballet Academy of Arizona" who includes children with Special Needs in these darling children's productions (with our beloved friend Caroline who can be reached at and a guest speaker from Special Olympics. 



In December we will have our "Breakfast with Santa and his Favorite Elf" Saturday December 1, 2012 East Valley Chapter and Saturday December 8, 2012 West Valley More info about that soon. xoxo

Candice and Parker Bradshaw
Candice and Parker Bradshaw
If you ever need me by cell is 602-622-6344 is and my email is ( I love you.)  Oh and by the way, if you haven't gotten it yet, here is the link to the Walk for Down Syndrome pictures!! 


  include the number total in your party and the ages of the children attending with you. We will email you more detailed information as to where to meet us to check in upon your arrival the day of the event.











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