A hat to cheer and comfort

When we hear of a need, we respond. That's the beauty of being a small organization.

Amy and I attend a bible study at Park Ave. United Methodist Church in Minneapolis, and a number of women are connected to people who are battling cancer. In November, Tricia pulled out a few hats for her cousin, Glennan, who has recently been diagnosed with cancer and is beginning her treatment in Louisiana.

Patti also took a few items to cheer the life of her neighbor, a young mom who has recently been diagnosed with cancer. We encouraged them to select a few item so that the women had a variety of hats to pick from in order to match their outfits and moods that day. The beauty of having a friend get a few items for you is that then they don't feel as it they're being greedy by taking more than one item. And then the friend can also be comforted that she is doing something to help. It's a win-win.

May these items bring hope and comfort...

44 items in November 2015

In November 2015, you ladies brought 44 items to our meet-up to donate -- soft, creative, gorgeous hats and scarves and blankets. We know how much time and effort those take, and we're so grateful for what you do.

The ladies delved into a box of donated ribbon, dreaming up ways to use it. The consensus was that it would work well with the hats Bernice has been making that have gone like hotcakes!

 Tesha picked up hats from the Cambridge drop-off location prior to the meeting, and everyone enjoyed seeing what Lorraine Hertges had made this month!
 Josey showed off her first little red hat, and got right to work making a larger one with purple yarn that should be big enough to donate.

 Thanks for being the drop-off man! We waited to make our delivery to the VA in November in order to get Brenda's soft, chunky blanket. Tesha's will be done soon, too!

 Linda's challenge to herself for the month was not to use any yarn twice or repeat any pattern. Thus, her pile of donated hats was quit diverse! She made an earflap hat with granny squares, and discovered how to do the bobble stitch, among other things!

A note of thanks:

I went to the Cancer Resource Center at Cambridge Medical Center to buy a few hats for my Mom Monday. They brought me into the Harbor Room where I was told I could not buy a hat. A little dumbfounded I said, I can't buy a hat and she said no they are free, please take as many as you want. She then proceeded to show me all of the different hats and invited me to bring my mom to the Center. A big THANK YOU to the volunteers who make the wonderful, colorful assortment of hats and to the volunteers who donate their time at the hospital. My Mom loved her hats and they look wonderful on her. Thank you Team Head Huggers! ~ Sandy Staloch
In October, we donated 106 hats and 1 scarf to the Harbor Room in Cambridge.

This was our third donation to this valuable resource at the Cambridge Medical Center. It has a special place in our hearts because the Harbor Room helped Amy's mom. (Click here and here and here and here to read about our past visits.)

"Thank you, thank you, thank you guys," said Lori Dimitry of the Harbor Room.

We learned that next year, the Harbor Room will be located in a different place within Cambridge Medical Center. They're switching places with the gift shop. Although the new location won't have natural light from so many windows, it will be better, according to Lori. Not having windows open to the outside will increase the privacy of the support center, and the space will no longer feel like a fishbowl. "The coffee will be on. The fire place will be on," she stated. They don't currently have a fire place, so that will make the new room nice and cozy. "My vision is very soft and very warm." The switch will occur in either January or February 2016.

At the Harbor Room, they do whatever a patient needs, be it big or small. Earlier in the day, Lori and her nephew had brought two Diet Cokes to a patient who requested it. When someone has a hard time keeping food and drink down, they're definitely going to get what they ask for!

The Harbor Room hosts a regular support group that meets monthly. There's a different topic each month. The most recent one got attendees doing the salsa dance in their chairs! Lori pointed out that when people suffer from lymphedema, they need to exercise or it will get worse. But it can be tough to exercise. So they learned how to exercise in their chairs!

The Harbor Room sees a lot of people on limited incomes, and not all can afford their medications. By accessing the Hope Fund, people can get help paying for their gas or a new washer and dryer.

CMC's infusion wing is using a holistic approach, and includes essential oils such as ginger and bergamot to help with nausea, pain control and headaches. "We try to do what the patient needs," said Lori.

October happens to be Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and the Harbor Room had just received a donation from the Cambridge Caribou Coffee. Caribous around the nation sell Amy's Blend in October to raise money in honor of a former employee who lost her life to breast cancer.

Learn more about the resources at the Harbor Room here.

Cozy October 2015 meet-up

In October, we gathered around the fireplace at Silverwood, warmed by good company and hot drinks. We received 20 items, many of them time-consuming blankets and shawls.

It was our month for red, white and blue items -- and you all came through with such gorgeous items! They'll be donated to the VA Hospital in November in honor of Veterans Day. We donated there last year, as well, after learning that they're always in need of amply-sized lapghans for ailing vets. (Read about our previous donations here.)

Thanks from Beth

Special shout out to Alexys Tellinghusen!! We received this message in our inbox:

A huge THANK YOU to Alexys Tellinghusen for the fabulous purple hat that I found at MN Oncology in Minneapolis.

November is Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month and I will wear it often (I am wearing it right now).

I am sending love right back to you.

Click here to read more about our donation in January 2015 to Minnesota Oncology in Minneapolis.

Thanks from Terri

Terri Shoberg had this to say about the three hats she received from Team Yarn - Head Huggers in October 2015:

Tricia Brownlee [of the Morning Blend Bible Study at Park Ave. United Methodist Church] delivered 3 very cute hats to me a couple of weeks ago. I love them & they are much lighter to wear around the house than my wig. Thank you so much for your kindness.