I wanted to share what was a busy week earlier this month in the Kitzmiller household… a busy week but also an extremely rewarding one!
My family and I participated in “Love Week,” an initiative that was started by Elevation Church about four years ago. The goal of Love Week is for people all across Charlotte to serve as many hours as possible in the community. It’s grown every year, not only in the number of service hours but also in reach, with new churches and groups joining every year. The goal for this year was 60,000 hours of service!!!
To kick off the week, my daughters, Anja and McKenzie, and I volunteered at the Ballantyne Triathlon. Our job was to cheer participants along at different points along the race route and to keep the energy level high at the finish line.
Having done triathlons, I know how participants and their friends (aka “cheering sections”) tend to move on to other activities after the athlete finishes the race, while others who might not have as much support are still finishing. It was fun for us to be able to make sure that everyone had a good experience… right to the very last finisher!
It was also a lot of fun to serve at such an event as a family who likes to be active. In fact, both of my daughters said they think a triathlon is something they might like to try in the future, after seeing participants of all ages and body types. That was wonderful to hear.
Next, we volunteered with an organization called Kids Against Hunger, packing up food bags that contained rice, vegetables, soy and protein powder. The bags will be shipped to Nicaragua and can feed six children for an entire day, just by adding boiling water. So, armed with a hair net and gloves, we got to work!
My daughter, McKenzie, and I also served with another organization called Friendship Trays, where we delivered food to individuals around Charlotte who were homebound, either due to age, illness or handicap. It was a joy to be able to serve together, just the two of us. This whole week was so impactful to her as a teenager. Not only did she volunteer more than anyone in our family, but she really learned so much about giving and serving, and how important it is, and how great it feels. It was awesome to see her growth.
I capped off the already-busy week by doing another open water swim, this time at Cane Creek Park in Waxhaw. It was not a huge event, but was a great opportunity for me to work on my time for swimming one mile in open water. My goal was to finish it in under 30 minutes and I did it! I came in at just over 28 minutes, which was 9th overall out of 56 participants and 1st among females.
All and all, I’d say it was a pretty good week!