Luke's Lids for Kids

Luke's Lids for Kids

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A BIG and Exciting Challenge!

Okay so I got some terrific news today!  I connected recently with a camp I volunteered with while I was in college known as Special Days Camp.  It's based in Michigan and was closely connected to Mott Children's Hospital at the University of Michigan.  It is a camp for kids who have or have had cancer and their siblings.  They have a summer program and a winter program; I was fortunate enough to have been a part of both camps numerous times.  I sent out an offer to Special Days to send them hats for their upcoming winter camp and they accepted.  The woman I am in contact with said they are planning on 115 kids for winter camp and she figured that I probably wouldn't be able to send them that many hats but I would like to do just that!!  So I guess by now you have figured out that they money we make from the bow sales is going to buying hats for Special Days. I would like to offer up this challenge to those of you who are supporters of this project.  Please help me in getting hats for all of the campers at this years winter camp...if you are knitting hats for Christmas maybe you could knit a couple of extras or if you see a good deal on winter hats maybe you could pick up a few for our kids.  If you indeed would like to help us with this mission, email me at and I will send you my address.

Let me tell you a little bit about Special Days from my experiences.  Special Days is the second oldest oncology camp in the world and was started by a father of a daughter with cancer.  They have kids come from Michigan mostly but also from Chicago and Indiana; they are ages 5-18.  Special Days does 3 different programs: they have Special Days Summer Camp for kids who have or have had cancer, Special Days Partners Summer Camp for the siblings of cancer patients, and Special Days and Partners Winter Camp which includes everyone.  My first summer at Special Days was right after my grandma passed away from non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.  I wasn't 100% sure I wanted to go and be around a whole camp full of people with cancer given our family's recent loss.  I was sure it was going to be so very sad...sick kids, sad stories, limited activities, etc.  Boy was I WRONG...nothing could have been further from the truth.  The kids who come to Special Days are full of spirit and energy, if they feel poorly you would never know it.  These kids are treated to some amazing air balloon rides, horse back riding, small plane rides, swimming, tent camping, all sorts of things.  There really is no sadness only joy and love.  That's not to say that they don't acknowledge the reality of cancer, they do have a night of remembrance for the campers who lost have  their battles but mostly that night is a celebration of the love that surrounds this camp.  The campers are just wonderful.  If they are currently on treatment there is a dedicated medical staff there 24/7 so those needs are always taken care of.  I learned how much it takes out of a parent to leave their child who is battling cancer with a camp counselor for a week but I can assure you the staff take such loving care of these special campers and partner campers.  Special Days is really a special place and I am so excited to be able to give something back to them.  Special Days gave me a great deal of healing and hope that first summer and to be able to give back is really important to me.

Soo...if you are up for the challenge to get 120 winter hats (so they have a few extras) to Special Days I'd be so grateful!!  If you are interested in helping, email me at

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Getting Ready...

So, this month we have made a donation to Central DuPage Hospital's Cancer Center and on Friday will be making a donation to the Ronald McDonald Children's Hospital at Loyola!  Pretty excited about that!  We received a wonderful donation of hats and headbands from one of my cousins (thanks Jacquelyn) and we were interviewed for another blog - Tiny Blue Lines (thanks Chaunie).  We are also getting ready for a sale of hair bows at St. Petronille Catholic Church's Christmas Craft Fair!!  I have lost count as to the number of bows I have to sell but I'm hopeful we will be making a lot of money!  If you are in the Glen Ellyn or surrounding area please stop by and say hello!  Maybe pick up a bow or two!  The craft fair is happening November 13, 2011!  Things are going well and I hope that everyone who is reading this has a wonderfully fun Halloween!  Thanks again for all the support!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Fulfilling a Dream!

Okay I just needed to post this because I am so very excited!  I got an email back today from St. Jude's Children's Hospital with approval to add them to the list of hospital which we are donating to!  They will only accept the headbands at this time because they get a lot of hats (as I can imagine) and they have very strict guidelines for their donations (understandably)!  As a kid, I would ride in the St. Jude's Bike-A-Thons and as I got older I always thought it would be the place I would end up working.   My husband and I even made a pilgrimage there when we moved from Michigan to Texas, just because I wanted to see in person this place where miracles happen.  I'm sure you have watched the St. Jude infomercials and listened to those Stories of Hope and thought what "what would I do" hoping to never have to find out; but it does happen, as it did to my brother.  I think everything changes from that moment of diagnosis on.  I think the conception of this project started long ago, on those late nights watching those St. Jude's commercials and hoping that it never happens to anyone I love.  But it did and now we can do and are doing something to try and make the day or even just a moment a little brighter for those brave brave children.  Yep, it's a dream fulfilled for me to be able to do something for kids battling cancer.  I've heard the story that Danny Thomas (the founder of St. Jude's) prayed to St. Jude saying "show me the way and I will build you a shrine" - he listened and acted on what his heart was telling him to do.  Obviously, this project is nowhere near what he did but just as I was wondering if this project was going to continue, I get this email from St. Jude's agreeing to accept a donation from us.  Maybe I'm just being really way too mushy (and if you know me you know I'm a big no huge sap) but this is really meaningful to me and to this project.  Thank you St. Jude's for allowing us to be a part of your kids' lives! :)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Yes, we are still here!!!!

Okay, I know shame on me!!  I haven't posted anything in a while but it's been a crazy time in our home (summer fun, camping - yikes, school starting), so getting time to do much of anything else has been close to impossible!  Luke, of Luke's Lids, and his family also moved home this summer and are now closer to our family and I know that everyone is so happy about that!  Welcome home Luke and Co!

We are working right now on hats and bows, planning for a donation the beginning of October (keeping my fingers crossed that we can make that goal).  We are also going to be selling bows at a craft show, November 13 at St. Petronille Catholic Church here in Glen Ellyn, so if you are around here please please please come by and tell your friends to come by!!  To be frank, we really need to make some money to keep this project going! There are some super cute Kofi hats that I want to purchase for the winter months but they are expensive and in order to be able to buy them I need to sell A LOT of bows!  I did get a wonderful donation from Diane Lucas of beautiful hats for this project!  They are so soft and comfy, I know our kids are going to LOVE them!  Thank You Thank You Thank You!!!!

There is so much that I would like to do for this fall and winter season!!  I have seen some adorable ribbon for Halloween and Christmas, as well as collegiate ribbon that I would love to buy but the ribbon is quite expensive so I am hoping to sell out our bows at the craft show in November!!!  I was thinking it might help if I could find a local store that might be willing to sell our bows during the year so if anyone knows of a store that might be willing to help please contact me (!!   Until I file for 501(c)3 status we are funding this project on our own and really need to find some different ways to keep going and growing!!  If you have any ideas I am all ears!!  Any and all help is so welcome and appreciated!!!

I hate asking for help so this is all really hard for me to write but in order to keep this project alive I need you!!!  I need people to help me brainstorm ideas, make bows and hats, and deliver them to as many kids as we possibly can!  I'm hoping to connect with St. Jude's in the next couple of weeks about starting a partnership with them as well and I'm pretty excited about that.  I am just so grateful for all the help that we have received thus far...especially from my sister who is my partner in all this.  Kimi you are such an inspiration to me and I am so proud to be doing this project with you!!!  Thank You Thank You Thank You and I Love You!!

Have a blessed day everyone and thanks for taking the time to read!!!!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Bow Sale this Weekend!!!!

Okay, so this Thursday through Saturday, I am going to be selling bows during the Glen Ellyn Sidewalk Sales!  I will have a table set up outside of the Swap Shop (Thursday and Friday from 10:30 - 1 and in the evening, Saturday all day) with a variety of bows for sale.  All proceeds are going right back into purchasing the supplies needed to continue our mission of creating funky headware for kids with cancer.  If you are in Glen Ellyn, stop by and see me and tell your friends!
Thanks for all the continued support and hope to see some of you this weekend!!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Growth and Expansion

Wow!  All I can say is Wow!  I feel so blessed to be surrounded by so many people who care about this project!  I have to first start with Canada - no not the country - but the vacation there with my husband's family.  I am so grateful to my husband's mom and aunt for the beautiful scarves they brought from India and his cousins and sister for helping me out with creating so many funky fun hats and headbands while in the beautiful setting of Cottage Country!  You ladies did an awesome job and I am so proud of you all!  Next, I have to say that my sister (AKA project partner) and I rocked it out the following week while I was home with my family!  We were up late almost every night making bows for headbands and brainstorming our next moves (which I am so very excited about)!  Between the hats in Canada and the bows in Michigan, we managed to make 150 hats, headbands, and scarves.  That means that we have enough to supply 3 different hospitals this month!  AMAZING!!

In our brainstorming sessions, my sister and I decided that it might be beneficial to start selling some of our bows to help fund this project, so......I will be selling bows this week (Thursday through Saturday or until they are gone) during the Glen Ellyn sidewalk sales outside of an awesome shop called the Swap Shop (thank you Beverly)!!!  So if you live in the area, please come by and check them out!  We are going to try to start selling them at area craft fairs and possibly some local shops.  If you know of a store owner who might be willing to keep a couple of bows on hand to sell, please contact me!  We are also planning a hat/headband making party in our hometown of North Branch, so keep checking for updates as we finalize dates and times for this event!
The last bit of exciting news is we have added another hospital to our project!  I will be making a first delivery to the pediatric oncology unit of Central DuPage Hospital next week and I am very excited about this!  I have to thank the Chicago area chapter of the American Cancer Society for this connection!
I am so humbled at the path this project has taken and thank God for all of the wonderful people helping us to continue our mission.  I'm not sure "thank you" is enough, but to all of you who have helped us out in any way, my God bless you and thank you from the bottom of my heart!
If you know of anyone who might like a hat or headband please contact me or if you know of a hospital that might be interested in a donation please let me know!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Creative juices are a-flowin'!

It has indeed been a while my friends!  With summer now upon us, my boys want to spend most of their time outdoors so it has been hard to get much accomplished!  I did have one fun evening with my friend Tina making hats!  I also had my bow making sister teach me her craft, which I am leaning slowly but surely.  I have to say my bows are not quite as adorable as Kim's but it's a start, right!  My in-laws are in town right now and have graciously donated a box full of beautiful scarves from India for this endeavor, so between those and the hats we have been able to finish, I am ready to make my first donations to Hurley Medical Center and the Ronald McDonald Children's Hospital at Loyola Medical Center.  I do not yet have a tally for the Hurley donation but I have 45 hats and scarves for Loyola.  I'm so excited to get these out to the hospitals and start getting some feedback!

I would like to take a moment to thank a few people...
My good friend Tina - thanks for helping me out and all of your great ideas!
My mother-in -law and my husband's aunt - thanks for all the scarves, I'm sure the girls are going to love them!
My sister Kimi - thanks for teaching me the art of the hair bow!
My friend Lori's mom - thanks for all the hats, you are awesome!

Hopefully your summer is off to a fun and exciting start!  If you are reading this and have any suggestions for hat ideas or know of someone in need of some funky headware, please let me know!

Thursday, May 19, 2011


Hi Friends!  It is May, we have moved our family back to Chicago, and Luke's Lids is growing!!  I'm so excited to be expanding this project!  We are going to be donating hats to the pediatric oncology program at Hurley Medical Center in Flint, MI and the Ronald McDonald Children's Hospital at Loyola University Medical Center in Chicago, IL.  I'm so excited about these opportunities to expand this program but it means we are going to have to step up our production to be able to fill all the needs.  I'm hoping to maybe have a few hat parties this summer and get lots of people involved in helping us!  If you are interested in helping out, please let me know:

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

April's in Bloom!

I wish April was in bloom!  In Minneapolis here, it snowed all morning, luckily it has all melted and the day ended with a beautiful sunset!  We are moving this weekend so thankfully my sister has kicked the headband and hat making into high gear!  She is personally hand-delivering a truckload of headbands and hats tomorrow to Mott's and I'm so excited for her!  I think these headbands are going to be just perfect for Easter!  I'm also proud to report that this month's tally is:
April - 93 hats and headbands

I am looking for help designing a logo for Luke's Lids.  If anyone is creative and wants to help us with this or knows of a graphic designer who might be willing to help us out, please contact me (!  I have absolutely no talent for drawing whatsoever not a single drop so this is something I need to outsource! :)

Happy Easter and thank you again for reading and all the support!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Bows, Bows, Bows...Oh My!

I cannot believe that Easter is just around the corner, that means tulips, daffodils, and cherry blossoms are on the way!!  YES!!!  It also means that much of my family is in the midst of changes!  Luke and his wonderful family, are currently on the road to Arlington, VA where they are beginning the next chapter of their lives and we wish them all the best!  My family is also getting ready to move back to Chicago next week and so I am SO very grateful to my sister Kim for picking up the slack in making the hats and headbands this month!  Kim has become an expert in the art of bow-making...seriously adorable headbands are coming out of her house and I am so excited for the kids at Mott's to get them.  I think they are going to be perfect for Easter!

I also want to thank Natalie and Jen from my local MOMS Club for coming over last week for a night of hat-making and wine-drinking!!  It was our  first Luke's Lids "event" and it was so much fun!  It was just nice to have a night of girl talk, even if there was the occasional interruption of "I want Mommy..." from my boys!!

I want to again, thank everyone for all the support of this project!  If you know of a young person going through treatment for cancer, please contact us so we can get them a hat or headband!  If you have an idea for a Luke's Lids event, please contact us because we are always open to new ideas!!  Hope you have a wonderful day and that we continue to be blessed with this beautiful weather!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Who is Luke??

It just dawned on me that maybe you might like to be introduced to our brother Luke and learn a bit about how this project came to be! 

We, the Gyomory kids, come from a family of 9...2 parents, 2 sisters, and 5 brothers.  We have since expanded to include 2 daughter in laws, 1 son in law, 3 seriously adorable girlfriends, 3 granddaughters, and 4 grandsons!  I am the oldest and Luke is next in line (from there it goes...Paul, Lance, Joel, Kim, and Andrew).  6 years ago, Luke was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Disease, a form of Lymphoma.  Prior to his diagnosis, there were 3 other very close family members also diagnosed with various forms of cancer who had lost there battle.  Speaking only for myself, hearing the word cancer, associated with my brother was both terrifing and heartbreaking.  Luckily, as a family we have a strong Catholic faith and the ties that bind us are unbreakable!  Luke also has an AMAZING wife who stood by his side and fought the battle right along with him and I know how much that helped him through.  So...before Luke started chemotherapy my Dad and brothers and hubby all decided to show their solidarity by shaving their heads to varing degrees!  My Dad is the only one who actually went bald along with Luke.  It was interesting that their heads are actually quite similarly shaped...random fact!  After Luke completed his treatment, he, PRAISE GOD, went into remission!  The day he gave us that news is a day that renewed my faith and the tears of fear finally stopped for me. 

Well our Dad decided that he was going to keep the bald look.  You see, he is very much a "Jack of All Trades" and a "Man's Man", he is also quite the comedian these days and calls his act "Jack Not in a Box" (yes his name is Jack)!  I believe, it was the Christmas after Luke went into remission, Dad asked us to get him hats for Christmas to keep his poor head warm.  So I did but decided that I wanted to make them personal for him.  In that spirit, I bought some fabric paint and put phrases on each one...some funny, some sentimental, and always one with the names of everyone in our family.  I remember that first Christmas, I did one that said "My son's a cancer survivor" and he wore it often!  Since that Christmas, these hats have been his Christmas present and I think he looks forward to them because they always get a reaction!  This year, we were talking about them after Christmas and started to brainstorm this idea of making them for children going through chemotherapy.  We decided that it made sence to send them to the patients at Mott Children's Hospital at the University of Michigan because that is where I went to college and spent most of my free time volunteering (on the pediatric oncology unit).  My Mom made the first hat donation!  Dad has provided me with multiple ideas for hat phrases when I run blank, which happens often!  Kim has taken the lead on designing hip headbands and hats for the girls!  Luke agreed to have his name used in this project and gives me ideas on who I could go to for donations!  It is indeed a family project and one I am so proud to be a part of!! 

There you have it, the birth of Luke's Lids for Kids!  It is a labor of for Luke, love of a family, and love for the kids who have to endure what no one, especially a child, should have to endure.  I think, ultimately this project is a testiment to the way that our parents have raised us to know what is important in life, so Mom and Dad...Thank You and We Love You!

If you have a story about how cancer has touched your life, we would love to hear it!  If you know of a child who might like a hat or headband, please contact me so we can get something to them!! 

Hope you have a peaceful night and a joyful tomorrow!

Big Thanks!!!

I have been extremely overwhelmed by the support for this project Kim and I have started!  Truthfully, I was pretty nervous about "going live" with Luke's Lids but because the response has been so positive I'm thrilled that we did!  I think I forgot to add in my first post a contact email for those who want to get in contact with us about helping out, so you can email me at

I wanted to send a shout out to a couple of companies who have been or are helping us with this project.  Luke suggested I contact his favorite sportsman company Realtree, so I did and they sent me a box full of hats, so thank you Realtree and Bill Jordon!  Also wanted to thank the Ribbon Retreat for allowing me to use their nonprofit discount on ribbon supplies, so thanks again!  If anyone happens to know of a company or store that might be willing to donate supplies, please contact me!  We are always looking for help in this endeavor!

Thank you Mom for all the supplies you and Kim got this weekend!  You guys rock!  Thanks to Kim's friend Dennis for his generous donation and support!

So we are working on our April donations now!  I know Kim is having a blast right now with all her cool new supplies!  And I'm excited to have some of my Mom pals over this week to make hats, should be fun!!  We are hard at work and always looking for others to join in the too!  Jonah (my 3 year old son) has made a few hats to donate to the hospital and I'm so proud of him for doing so!  He has a lot of fun doing it!

Anyways, so happy spring is finally here, I think to stay too!  Hope your flowers are sprouting, the winter coats are going away, and grass is again starting to appear!  I'm happy to say, here in Minnesota where we have gotten 9000 inches of snow this year, it has disappeared and there is indeed still grass there!  Thank goodness!!!

Thanks again for all the good wishes and for just reading this!!  Happy Spring!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Getting Started!

We are now off and running!  Luke's Lids for Kids is a project started out of love; love for my brother who is a survivor of Hodgkin's Disease and love for the kids at Mott Children's Hospital at the University of Michigan who are recieving treatment for different types of cancer.  We are making hats, headbands, bandanas, and whatever else we can find to enhance those beautiful heads and hopefully bring a few smiles and laughs along the way!  As you can see from the picture, my sister is hard at work on the girly side of things, I'm taking care of the rough and tumble boys!  We recently presented our 3rd package to Mott Children's Hospital (in person this time) and hope that the kids will enjoy these hats made with love.  More to come soon!
January - 22 hats
Febuary - 22 hats
March - 53 hats/headbands
We are shaing this blog in the hopes that some of you reading will be inspired to help us with this project!  If you feel that this is something you would like to help with, please contact Kim or I.  We are open to any and all ideas and help!!  Thanks so much for reading this and following (or hopefully joining) us on this adventure!