Wednesday, August 10, 2011

How To Help

Dear Friends and Family of Dana and David,

Many of us have longed to help the Hursts during their time of need.  As post-MRI life has unfolded, Dana has begun to identify some of the family's needs.  She asked that I would pass on.  Feel free to forward this email to anyone who indicates they are interested.

There are several tangible ways to help the Hursts:* Notes of encouragement - Dana has indicated this has been much appreciated.  All notes and cards are being read, kept and will be reread to David after surgery.

* Gift Cards for Gas - Houston is 3.5 hours away from Waco.  So, the family has and will continue to spend lots of money on gas when driving back and forth between Waco and the hospital.  Gift cards for gas will most certainly be used.

* Gift Cards for Food - Between appointments, traveling and surgery, meals are difficult to plan for in advance.  Gift cards to fast food places and restaurants will appreciated.  Suggestions of restaurants near MD Anderson and Waco include McDonalds, Chick-fil-a, Chipotle, Subway, Jimmy Johns and Panera.  Both Waco and Houston have many of the national chain sit-down restaurants.

* Gift Cards to Walmart, Target and HEB for various items - Gift cards to Walmart, Target and HEB can provide resources for the family as they find needs pop up they didn't even know about. Various items forgotten while packing for the hospital, the need for laundry detergent while staying at the hospital or food to replenish an empty refrigerator during travels to and from Houston are just some of the things Dana and David may use with these gift cards.

* Meals - Meals have been coordinated from now until next week.  However, the Hursts are in for the long haul.  So, signing up for a meal in the future can be very helpful.  Sheryl Carroll will be coordinating these meals.  If you are interested in helping with a meal sometime in the future, please email her at or call her at 254-722-2662.  Some meals will be most helpful given warm.  However, frozen meals may be better used as they can be used at the family's discretion. 

* Devotionals and other items to encourage their faith - Dana has indicated any items that will encourage David and Dana's trust in God during this time would be much appreciated.  A good devotional, a prayer journal, a hand-written prayer, a small framed Bible verse are just some of the things that could be encouraging to receive.

* Interactive Family-Child Activities or inexpensive wrapped gifts for the Kids - Quality time with the kids is a high priority these days.  Some people have asked what the children need.  The Hursts would appreciate any craft projects (like Make-A-Picture-Frame-For-
Daddy) or interactive games/toys that would allow Dana and David to spend quality time with the children.  Audrey is 3 and Parker is 1.  In addition, the children will likely be spending pockets of time at the hospital or in the car traveling to and from the hospital.  So, small wrapped inexpensive surprises can make a long car trip more bearable or a visit to a scary hospital more enjoyable.  Dana can keep these in her purse to use to pacify the children should a doctor call unexpectedly or David need her attention.

* A Provided Thank You Card (or better yet, saying "no Thank You Note is needed at all"!) - One of the most difficult situations about receiving a gift during a time of need is trying to keep track of who to send a thank you note to (and finding the time to do it!).  So, Dana has suggested that it would be helpful if anyone who sends a gift provide a thank you note inside so that it may be returned with a note of thanks.  (As a personal side note, I believe one of the greatest gifts to someone in time of need is the gift of no need for a thank you note at all!  So, if you don't necessarily need one, please indicate no thank you note is needed.  It will be a great gift to the family and will help minimize additional stress during this time of need.) 

* Other items - Having never been through this before, Dana and David don't even know yet what they need.  Things may not even know they could use include coins for the soda machine, snack foods to munch on, a comfortable blanket, warm socks, a box of chocolates, etc.  Don't be afraid to think outside of the box with regard to gifts.  Sometimes it's the simplest gifts that can mean the most!

**A note about Visa Gift Cards and money.  Certainly generic gift cards can be used by the family.  However, some of the national credit card gift cards have alot of restrictions on where and when a card can be used (for example some cards require registering the card first or using the card within a certain period to prevent fees from accruing).  Please use your discretion.  Also, cash may be used by the family on a variety of things such as food, gas and medical bills/co-pays/medications.  If you have a purpose for a gift, please indicate.

Where to send cards and gifts:Since the Hursts may be traveling between cities, Dana's friend Amanda Pryor will be making sure all gifts are promptly given to the family.  Please send all cards and gifts to:

David and Dana Hurst
c/o Amanda Pryor
727 Harvest Lane
McGregor, TX 76657

Amanda may be reached at 214-289-6765 or

If you have any questions or suggestions, please let me know.
David and Dana have felt a blanket of friends and love surround them through this time and cannot say enough about the overwhelming support they have felt. 
On behalf of David and Dana,
Thank you,