Each spring there is an event infused with magic, kindness and generosity in Scottsdale known as The Fairytale Tea. Think silent auction and fundraising kicked up a notch with décor to die, a cause anyone can get behind and a group of women who can kick ass with the best of them. Mostly because a good portion of the women in the room have come face-to-face with the beast cancer.
The Fairytale Tea is the brainchild of HEAL, the Happily Ever After League. The YaYas have been attending for years. It’s a simple, yet completely unique, idea. Each table of ten creates a wonderland tabletop in some sort of theme—be it The Queen of Hearts, Winnie The Pooh, 101 Dalmatians complete with a Cruella to scare the hella outta of all of us, Princess and the Pea, Cinderella or The Frog Prince. It is a menagerie for the eyes as each year the women attempt to best each other in décor and fundraising. After all, there are prizes.
This year is the first I do not attend. Two surgeries, Gus the Asshole feeding tube and exhaustion keeps me away. Led by party planner and table scaper extraordinaire, our Yaya Bean, a Duchess Diaries table is amongst the glitter and glam. The table overflows with pearls and diamonds and teacups and all things Duchess related. Heart swell.
As you know, the YaYas are the bunch of friends for which every girl yearns. Yep, they’re named for the book—The Divine Secrets of the YaYa Sisterhood and they live up to the name everyday. Blessed are those with chicks like this.
But what is most amazing about this year’s event? Record attendance and fundraising. And for what? Mothers with cancer. The nonprofit provides outreach, resources and support to mothers going through cancer treatment. Moms are from all over Arizona. HEAL distributes gift cards to help offset the cost of monthly expenses as a result of a cancer diagnosis. Then there’s the HEALing House, which hosts monthly social outings, a pantry and support to the whole family.
Behind HEAL is the ever-smiling, ever-cheerful, ever-example-to-us-all, Lauren Daniels. Lauren was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 35. She had a bilateral mastectomy, reconstruction and a hysterectomy. Her youngest child was one-year-old; her oldest 11. This year, I hear, her youngest got up to speak about her amazing mom and a dry eye could not be found. At the time of her diagnosis, Lauren recognized her amazing support system but wondered about those without the same. Cancer with children is very different.
She started HEAL only six months after her cancer diagnosis in 2004. Cheers!
If you need help or know someone who does, reach out to HEAL, 480-275-0613 or send an email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit the website here.