Archive for December, 2010

It’s all about PERSPECTIVE ….

Sunday, December 19th, 2010

The holidays seem to bring out the best and the worst in people.  Personally, I have experienced the absolute joy of how it feels to give a gift to someone that had very deep meaning.  Earlier this year I made a wedding gift for a soldier who I supported a few years back, and his lovely bride.  Hopefully I will never forget the amazing way that gift made them feel in receiving it, or in me giving it.   Every stitch of that blanket was made with prayers for their marriage to sustain the tests of time and for the safety of our brave heroes who continue to serve our Nation all over the world.  Few gifts can probably ever mean as much to me as that one.  One would probably ask, who it meant more to … the giver, or the receivers?

Honoring a hero and his wife ....

That question should be asked of all gifts given this holiday season.  There have been times when I was less mature and more selfish, and I didn’t really appreciate what someone had given me.  When I began adopting service members years ago, I stopped exchanging traditional gifts with most people, and began making my closest friends and family a calendar from my travels.  To me, it is the best gift I can give, because they can see where I have been and it always evokes stories they would otherwise probably not know to ask.  The gift means something to them (well, I hope it does anyway .. haha).  If nothing else, they have great pictures to look at all year long and a calendar to boot.  (hehe)  …. and on those rare occasions when I do give someone a gift, it truly is one I believe they will value and appreciate.  Something so simple as a “Proud Coin” can make all the difference in the world, from what I am told.  🙂

There are other times, where we have to look deeper inside to see the reason why someone gives the gift they do.  Maybe they have little money, so they make something they think you will like.  Maybe it looks dorky and you don’t see any purpose in it, but ask yourself if it could have a bigger meaning to the person who gave it to you.  Could it be possible it was in hopes it would make you happy inside, even if that wasn’t your reaction?

Sometimes we spend money on gifts, when we are not looking at the whole picture.  This reminds me of my second visit to South Africa.  The year before I had been taken to Soweto and met a bunch of children who were seeking donations for uniforms so they could attend school. (at the time I thought it a bit odd that one of the poorest places on earth would require children to have enough money to purchase uniforms, let alone charge for them to go to school).  For a few months I saved money and sent it to the school in a box full of clothes, toiletries, paper, and crayons so hopefully one child would be able to have that uniform.

The children each have on clothes brought by The Sky Angel from "Amerika" ...

When I went back the following year, that little boy was so excited to thank me.  He said “Miss Robin, it was so very nice of you to send money for this uniform so I could go to school.  It means so much to me to be able to study so I can make a better life for my family.  I hate to ask this, but is there any way you could buy me a pair of shoes, so I won’t have to walk on cut glass in order to get to school?”  Those words have stuck with me for various reasons … one simply is because at the time, I never about the shoes before that moment in time.

There will be gifts we receive in life that we simply do not want or need.  Accept them with gratitude, because sometimes it’s not about us.  Sometimes it is about the person giving the gift.  In reality, maybe my blanket doesn’t mean as much to Ed and Krista as it did to me to make it for them.   Maybe it means more to them.  But gifts are given as a token of our love and admiration for the receiver.  If you have lost perspective on the reason you are purchasing that gift, or why you are receiving the one you have gotten, maybe you should opt not to exchange gifts at all.

And if you receive a gift you simply do not want or cannot use, do me a favor?  Send it to me.  I promise I will put it into the hands of someone who will appreciate it more than words can begin to express.  Whether it be to a service member serving on battlegrounds on the other side of the world,  an orphan at a school in Johannesburg, or a family who will not have Christmas this year because their parents lost their jobs this past year and don’t even know where their next meal is coming from. 

May you experience the Reason for the Season through the gift of salvation this Christmas, for in that I found a reason for living my life with purpose.  Through my faith, I found forgiveness, and that I was and am accepted exactly as I am.  Having those gifts and being able to share them with you, is the best present I will ever be able to share … the gift of accepting people where they are, and being an example I hope you would want to follow.

As I bring this blog post to an end, I truly wish you and yours the most precious of holiday seasons and hope you have the joy of knowing you are a gift to every person you meet.  Set aside your differences and make things right with those you care about the most … life is short, do it while you can.   Look deeply inside yourself for PERSPECTIVE before you judge someone elses actions, and most of all .. I wish for you to experience the pure joy in giving AND receiving, gifts that deeply touch you … like an afghan that took months to make, or my lesson from a school kid thousands of miles away, about shoes.

The Sky Angel and Tigger, Christmas 2010

As a final note, please take a moment to light a candle, and say a prayer, send up positive thoughts and good juju to our valiant heroes serving so far away from home this holiday season and throughout the year.

Ho Ho Ho,

The Sky Angel

Please send all unwanted gifts (especially shoes! hehehe) to:

Robin Schmidt

PO Box 122037

Covington, KY 41012-2037

Please read BEFORE sending Holiday Cards to our Wounded Warriors at Walter Reed or Bethesda …

Saturday, December 4th, 2010

Christmas card for a hero ...

Thanks so much for ALL your support this past year with my efforts to support our valiant heroes, both on the battlefield, or here at “home”.  Earlier today on my layover, I had the blessed opportunity to visit some of our Wounded Warriors at Bethesda National Naval Medical Center and participate in a Christmas party thrown by Operation Homefront at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in WA DC.  While at both hospitals, I specifically asked what happens to cards where the envelope arrives without a specific person on it.  

The response at both locations was the same.  Since 9/11 and the threat of anthrax, any letters/cards/packages sent to a Military facility without a specific name, are destroyed.  On the internet many people email and say “send a card to “any soldier” or “any wounded hero”.  Please know these fall into the above category.
If you or anyone you know wants to (and please, I encourage you to do so!!!) write a Wounded service member, please feel free to send them to me, (or any legitimate organization who says they will deliver them for you, there are plenty of them on the internet) and I will be happy to either hand deliver them to Walter Reed, Bethesda, or forward them on to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany or the Combat Surgical Hospital in Afghanistan.  Our troops need and deserve our support and a card is such an easy way to uplift someone’s spirits.  Just write on the envelope “service member” or “wounded warrior” or something like that, and I will know NOT to open it. CARDS for CHRISTMAS must be received no later than 13December for Christmas delivery.  Anything received after this date will still be sent, it will just get there a little late.  (I accept cards all year round to support our Wounded Warriors).
Just this week I know there are 7 service members who paid the ultimate sacrifice while serving our Nation, from the units I am personally supporting in Iraq and Afghanistan.  My thoughts and prayers are with each of those families and all of those who are suffering from the effects of terrorism.  May there one day soon be Peace On Earth.
Thanks so much for helping me spread this information across the airwaves, and a huge shout out to my personal heroes reading this message. 

Happy Holidays …. and remember, if you are a service member who needs support, or you are someone who would like to adopt a hero, please go to : and sign up!!!   


Always, Robin 
Robin Schmidt
PO Box 122037
Covington, KY 41012-2037                    
Robin Schmidt chosen as:  ABC World News “Person of the Week” 23 October 2009
Robin Schmidt interview on Fox News “Fox & Friends” 22 October 2009

Angels among us …

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

The Sky Angel Santa ...

‘Twas the beginning of August and Santa’s chief elf better known as The Sky Angel was in charge of the Southern workshop. Knowing the time required for Santa’s sleigh to reach Afghanistan, The Sky Angel started to network for the needed donations to make “Mail Call for Our Heroes 2010” a success, for a US Army 101st Airborne Unit, known as “The Gators”. There are more members in this unit than she had ever done a project for in the past and knew it would be necessary to collect at least $3800 US dollars to purchase each of them a calling card for the holidays.

The Sky Angel shopping for our valiant heroes for the holidays ...

When the email call arrived at the Pacific Northwest workshop, chief elf Angel 2 went into action planning a fundraiser for the donations needed in this project and to support 5 other deployed units The Sky Angel has been supporting. Angel 2 contacted Cindy Brown the manager of The Valley Tavern in Port Hadlock, who along with the owners Chuck & Karen Russell generously agreed to host the Fundraiser.  Cindy jumped in to help plan the fundraiser, cooking all the food for the actual event and personally donating most of it.  Meanwhile The Sky Angel continued to rally for donations all over the world both for monetary and actual items to be included in the care packages, rallied to get schools involved with making cards for the troops, spoke at a church near the Southern Workshop, and participated in a book signing with author Steve Flairty, who featured The Sky Angel in his latest book “Kentucky’s Everyday Heroes 2”.  


a bit of "home" for our valiant heroes for the holidays ...

The original  time line to get the calling cards in time for the holidays was to have them shipped to Afghanistan by October 10th (because of the length of time it takes for Santa’s Sleigh to reach The Gators), but for various reasons the shipment could not go out until the beginning of November.  The initial donations received exceeded the “Mail Call for Our Heroes” project goal, even with extra expenses not previously foreseen.  The Sky Angel took care of the calling cards and accompanying Christmas cards from various sources, including the ones she wrote herself.  


"Mail Call for Our Heroes" calling cards for "The Gators" of the 101st Airborne ...

Angel 2 concentrated on the Fundraiser and took to the streets passing out fliers for the Fundraiser, collecting items for the silent auction to be held at the Fundraiser, including many handmade items from family and friends, and email networking.  Angel 2 even went to the local gun store, after her husband planted a seed in her head to do so, and was received with open arms, leaving with many donations. Many were skeptical that these would sell at the Fundraiser but in reality they were the most heavily bid on items.  The Sky Angel & Angel 2 as well as their family members and friends were all on site during the Fund Raiser and Angel 2 personally managed the silent auction. 

Posterboard made by Angel 2 for Fundraiser ...

The Pacific Northwest Workshop was now looking like a disaster zone, with Fundraiser paperwork, Christmas cards, and care package donations.  Angel 2 set about finishing up the Fundraiser paperwork and personally wrote over 200 Christmas Cards, then packaged up all the Christmas cards and care package donations, shipping them to the Sky Angel at the Southern Workshop for inclusion in the care packages along with all the other cards and goodies collected.

The remaining funds from “Mail Call for Our Heroes” project were added to the Pacific Northwest Fundraiser proceeds, leaving a generous allotment to fund Holiday care packages for “The Gators” and the other 5 units.  The Sky Angel enlisted the help of one of Santa’s Elves with a pickup truck and purchased a Christmas tree for each unit and all the decorations to put on them.  By this time the Southern Workshop was looking like a cyclone went through it, with Christmas trees, ornaments, Christmas cards, and care package contents spread everywhere. The push was on to finish off the care packages and have them on the sleigh by the first part of November in order for Santa’s sleigh to arrive on time.  Knowing she had to leave in a few days to get back to work, The Sky Angel worked furiously to get the job done of putting together the care packages and hand writing the many remaining Christmas cards to accompany them 1 1/2 days before returning to the friendly skies.  Just as the packages were loaded onto the sleigh, an email request came asking for help with a Marine unit in Afghanistan.  When the Sky Angel communicated with that particular Marine (Marcus), she was told he was more concerned about his buddies in the 3/5 Marines, Lima Co. in Afghanistan, who had suffered tremendous casualties and needing a moral booster Sky Angel style. 

Care package Sky Angel & Tigger style ... whooo whoo who!!

The Sky Angel immediately asked for help from her network of elves, and received a generous donation which enabled her to spring into action and quickly purchase a Christmas tree, all the decorations, Christmas cards and the traditional care package items for the entire 3/5 Marine Lima Company.  The Sky Angel also knew that Marcus’ Marine Unit (MWHS) probably needed a morale boost too, so she matched the donation given for the 3/5 Marines with donations from the fund raiser and her own wallet, sending Marcus and his MWHS Marine unit a Christmas tree, decorations, and whipped up one giant care package for them as well.

Marcus and his Marines are smiling from the efforts of The Sky Angel and all her angels …

The Sky Angel then contacted Marcel Rust of the Rust Family, who sponsors the  website, who is working to get every member of the 3/5 Marines in all the different companies adopted for the Holidays and the remainder of their deployments. This whirl wind operation was completed in a little over one day for our Marines, with the packages being loaded onto the sleigh as The Sky Angel was heading to the airport, to go back to work.

During the course of The Sky Angel’s networking she came across a sweet lady in Alabama who is the mother of one of The Sky Angel’s past adoptees. As it turns out Clara loves to bake, and she has personally taken on the mission of making sure all of The Sky Angel’s Adopted Units have homemade cookies for the Holiday’s.  One contact made an entire case of special unscented soap and donated it to the care packages.   Another contact purchased hundreds of back-scratcher’s The Sky Angel requested, even covering all the shipping too, as the sleigh was already full and ready to depart. 


Thanks so much for your donations to help deliver smiles to our heroes!!!

Thanks to The Sky Angel, Angel 2, their family & friends, and many very generous big-hearted individuals, the following deployed men and women as well as hundreds of others in their units will have brighter Holiday’s.

(Senior Chief David Lally, Combat Surgical Hospital / Afghanistan)
(Sgt. Morgan Koski, 2nd Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry / US Army / Iraq)
(Sgt. Will Shawl, B Co. 1-21 IN Battalion / US Army /Iraq)
(1st Sgt Harold Lucas, 3/5 Marines Lima Co / US Marines /Afghanistan)
(Lt. John Paszterko, 1-502 IN 2 Battalion 101st Airborne / US Army / Afghanistan)
(Spc. Ryan Drahman, G-101 Aviation Regiment / US Army / Afghanistan)
(Spc. AJ Kirkendall, TF Brastogne / COP Monti / US Army /Afghanistan)
(MSgt Marcus Dawson, MWHS-3 Det A / US Marines / Afghanistan)
Angel 2