Sunday, May 30, 2010

Healthy Cause

Beach Beauties

Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) Ladies on the beach at Cassis

Thirteen years ago, during her medical checkup for her fourth birthday, my daughter’s best friend was diagnosed with Juvenile Diabetes. As the friendship matured and we became closer to this sweet girl and her wonderful parents, we learned much more about the life threatening and disruptive effects of this disease and determined that we should try to do something, in our own small way, to help find a cure.

We’re fortunate to have a beautiful property in the South of France, Les Murets, and with the generous help of Delta Air Lines, we were able to offer our house as a live auction item for the Juvenile Diabetes Atlanta Gala. We were thrilled that it was very profitable for the cause. But you can’t offer the same thing year after year, so we needed to do something that would spice it up a little.

I’m not sure how this idea evolved, but I decided to throw myself in to the mix and offer a week at the house, with yours truly acting as the chef, chauffeur, tour guide and bottle washer (although it turns out there is nothing more efficient or helpful in a kitchen than a group of eight women, so I don’t think I ever washed a single bottle!). The week was a terrific success and set a record for any single item raised during the live auction of the JDRF Gala. Equally importantly, everyone bonded nicely and had a great time.

Many of the women on the original trip decided they wanted to do the trip again, and of course I was more than happy to oblige. So this year, four of the original group, along with two lovely newcomers, joined me for another trip of a lifetime – and with their generous contributions, they actually surpassed the amount raised several years ago. (All you have to do is attend a JDRF Gala, and your heart will be warmed by the number of generous and committed people who have poured their lives in to finding a cure for this disease.)

For me personally, this trip has magically turned in to the gift that keeps giving. What started off as a fundraising event for a cause that my family supports very personally, has actually now broadened in to another business venture that is a natural extension for Huff Harrington Fine Art. This year, we will lead four trips to Provence, each one with different people and slightly different interests.

Could I have ever asked for more when I originally suggested this trip to JDRF? I don’t think so. Although the JDRF family is the first to wish for its own demise, and of course I agree with that, (for that would mean a cure for diabetes), I have to say that I am enormously grateful to this organization for what it has brought me personally: The chance to share my passion and love with extraordinary people for the benefit of an important cause, and the chance to build another business venture that keeps our gallery growing, happy and healthy. I’d call that a wonderfully American win/win! We hope you enjoy the photos from this special trip to Remember.

P.S. We still have a few openings for our October 2 to 9, 2010 trip to Provence. For information, please call the Gallery or visit our website.

A Day in Cassis

A Calanque in Cassis

A Calanque in Cassis

Barbara and her toyIngenious Iphone: Never miss another photo-op

Sally and Terry on the beachThe idyllic Cote d'Azur - a memory that will last forever.

Dipping her toes in the Mediterranean Dipping toes in the Mediterranean

Vera in Cassis

Mediterranean port villages provide the best photo backdrops!


On the terrace

Home Sweet Home: on the terrace at Les Murets


A Day at the St. Remy Market

(for more pictures, see our last blog: Hooked On…Orange)

A vision in pink and orange

Dining al fresco – a vision in pink & orange

Eggplant perfection at le B du P

Eggplant perfection at Ann’s favorite restaurant – Le Bistrot du Paradou

Molly and Barbara with their Orange Striped Market bags

Pink & orange goodies from the market


At Edith Mezard's

At Edith Mezard’s, from which our delicious candles hail!


Chappelle Sainte Sixte

Our ladies of the Wind


Terri in the Wind

A vision in blue in St. Hillaire

Mary Beth St. Hilaire


For more information about the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, click here (national chapter) and here (Georgia chapter).




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