Happy Anniversary, Lyon Road!

Today's a big day: January 25 marks one year since I started Lyon Road. And oh, what a year it has been. Failed some, succeeded more, learned tons, and best of all, far surpassed my initial goals. We are now in almost all fifty states, were featured in Buzzfeed twice, and have an average 35% increase in sales month-to-month. We are also excited to soon expand the business to include an in-house print shop and look forward to organizing an art show later this year.

I think the appropriate way to celebrate this success is to give back. Therefore, from February 1 until forever, we we will be donating 5% of proceeds to charity. This year's chosen charity is the Children's Cancer Association.

Why this organization? When there are so many excellent causes and top-notch charities? First, let me tell you about the CCA. This is directly from their site:

We prescribe joy. For children diagnosed with serious illness and their families, every moment is precious. At CCA, our goal is to transform as many of those moments as possible — with joy. Why joy? Because in the fight against devastating illness, joy is often forgotten. Because joy connects us with the power of hope, comfort, and happiness and helps families and children feel uplifted when their lives have been turned upside down. Because joy is something every child deserves.

The CCA infuses joy in three primary ways: One, with a mentorship program, where CCA provides a caring, trusted adult friend that a child can look forward to seeing during chemo treatments. Secondly, with their Caring Cabin, a retreat oasis where families can take stay at no charge, in order to create positive memories. Thirdly, with a music program, which can include bedside sing-a-longs, instrument lending from music carts, and live concerts from national recording artists.

I believe, I strongly believe, in their cause, as well as their strategy. We spent almost three months in the hospital with my son. Being in a hospital setting with a child struggling to survive, and then struggling to leave it, is devastating in countless ways. I have no words to describe the pain, the fear, the helplessness and hopelessness. And the crazy thing is, after the first scary week, we had a relatively good prognosis! While there was a constant fear of the long-term effects of a premature birth, and some chronic kidney and heart issues, we were still pretty sure that eventually our son would get discharged with comparatively few complications. During that time, I remember thinking, quite often, of parents of children with terminal illnesses. I wondered how they did it, bearing that weight, day after day. I'm sure I know the answer: you just do it, because you have to. But oh my gosh, the strength it must take. I promised myself at that time that someday I would try to do something to help assuage their pain.

Thanks to these memories, I feel committed to bringing a bit of joy in any way I can. CCA is a wonderful avenue to do so, and Lyon Road has made it possible.