Road Trip…

I hope you’ll all forgive my absence here on the blog for the past few days.  After seeing the news of the tornado in Joplin, MO I knew I wanted to do something to help.  So, this past weekend I made the trip down there with my dear friend Nichol.  Neither of us knew exactly what we’d be doing once we arrived, but we knew we’d find some way to help.  On our first night there we drove around the city letting the gravity of the scene sink in and spent some time chatting with people who were in and around the “zone”.  Everyone we came in contact with looked completely exhausted as many of them have been working around the clock for three solid weeks only stopping for a few hours of sleep wherever they can find a pillow.  As we headed out on day 2 the temps were hovering around 105 degrees and most of the “zone” was still without power.  Nichol and I decided that our mission could be to deliver gift cards for both the workers and families to enjoy a meal indoors in an air conditioned restaurant.  We pulled our car over and put out a call for action to our friends on Facebook and Twitter and within 20 minutes we had over $300 in donations.  In an hour we had nearly $700 and by the end of the day we were well over $1000 in donations!  We spent the entire day walking the streets of Joplin passing out gift cards to the 100′s of people working tirelessly to rebuild the city of Joplin.  My favorite part of the day was when Nichol and I stopped for lunch a crew of volunteers came in dripping with sweat and looking completely exhausted.  Without saying a word to the group we told the cashier that we were covering their lunch for the entire crew.  Nichol and I loved seeing the smiles on their faces when the cashier told them their meal was paid for, but we were moved when one of the men in the group started crying as he expressed his gratitude.

Looking back on our trip, I can’t think of a better way we could have spent our time in Joplin.  Feeding people around me is something I love to do and it was a great way for us to serve the city of Joplin.  Something tells me I’ll be back there again.  To my new friends in Joplin, until we meet again…

P.S.  I’ll be back tomorrow with a summer lunch pack idea so stay tuned!  :)


And just to give you an idea of just how many gift cards we distributed…

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14 Responses to Road Trip…

  1. Trisha D says:

    Thank you for doing this. This made my heart happy and my eyes well up.

    I live just a few hours from Joplin and feel so lucky, but on the same hand, so deeply guilty that the same exact storm that gave them such a devastating blow, gave us only a few measly hail stones, raindrops, and some wind.
    I have been watching all of the coverage of this awful disaster on the news night after night and it really gives me great joy that so many people have traveled from near and far to help these poor people. I have not been able to travel down or give them much monetary help, but have been doing what I can to help through a few dollars and supplies here and there, and it’s so nice to see others doing the same!

    Thank You again for doing what you could to help and Thank You to all others who have helped out this poor Missouri town either through donations and/or through prayers!

  2. Ry-Ann Ewart says:

    Wow that story just brought tears to my eyes. You are a wonderful person and Im so happy you could help out those people. You did an Amazing thing :)

  3. Lori Savage says:

    I was born and raised in Joplin and my family and many friends still live in Joplin. Thank you so much for going down and helping raise their spirits! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

  4. Christy B says:

    I, too, live just a few hours away from Joplin. Your story brought me to tears and has got me thinking of other ways I can help. Your generosity has inspired me. Thank you for sharing.

  5. Jamie Woodward says:

    You inspire me friend! Thank you for all you do!

  6. natalie millard says:

    This is very close to my home. I have friends there. The stories are heart wrenching! Your story and your heart bring tears and inspire me :) Thank you for helping those dear people! You are truly wonderful.

  7. Anna Mayer says:

    Woman, where do you find the time and energy to do all you do? You are amazing. And tiring. :) But I am so so glad you did this. What a gift!

  8. Beau says:

    this is great, so glad you are able to do this :)

  9. Nichol Krupp says:


    I cannot think of a better person to do this little mini-mission with. I love that we were both so open to going wherever the wind blew us. It all worked out perfectly. I cried all over again reading this and I am so blessed to have been a part of it with you. You are an incredible human being with a HUGE HEART for others. It is hard to describe the damage and devastation that we saw but your pictures show it well. Thank you so much for all that you do and ALL THAT YOU ARE… I would do a mission with you any day. I miss your Minnesota accent already.



  10. Renee says:

    You have a heart of gold for doing this. When I was a kid, my family and I were almost killed in a tornado that ravaged our small town. We had no warning. It came while my sister, mom, and I were sleeping. My dad saw it coming over the hill as lightening lit up the night sky. It hit our house before we were able to get into the crawlspace. I honesty don’t know how we survived. Only one wall stood, and it was the one we were hovered behind. Our eyes are locked on local news, radio, and radar every time there is a cloud in the sky now. It changed our lives; it’s devastation on a level that can’t be explained. I was deeply saddened and impacted by not only Joplin, but the other people effected by the tornado outbreak this year. Bless you for helping these people. They need all the help they can get. Our devastation brought looters into our home, people who came out of state to rip others off, contractors who took money and left homes half rebuilt… etc. It’s chaotic on levels that people can’t even fathom, and I guarantee that your efforts were cherished beyond words—a glimmer of hope for them. I’d love to make a trip to help as well.

  11. Jamie, I am incredibly moved by your compassion, humility and generosity. What a great reminder to me not just think, ‘it’s too far away’ or ‘someone else will take care of that’ I work for a company that does water hydration/filtration systems. I’m going in to work today to see what we can donate and how we can help out! You are amazing!

  12. Carolina says:

    I saw your blog shared by a fellow photographer (Melissa Surprise) and it is so fun! And this particular post warmed my heart so much. It is so encouraging seeing people help people. That was a wonderful and selfless thing you did for the people of Joplin.

  13. Kelly Ripplinger says:

    Jamie, you are truly an inspiration to women everywhere. I so admire you. I love that you just up and did this and made such a difference.

  14. proba says:

    I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own blog and was wondering what all is needed to get set up? I’m assuming having a
    blog like yours would cost a pretty penny? I’m not very web savvy so I’m not
    100% sure. Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated.

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