Tag Archives: “Holiday Cheer”

Calling All “Elfs” – “Holiday Cheer at Walter Reed 2017”

Marine Moms-Bethesda's "Holiday Cheer @ Walter Reed-Bethesda 2017"

This is your opportunity to say THANK YOU to the patients at Walter Reed NMMC and let them know they are in your thoughts this holiday season.



We are very grateful  to our “Elfs” who’ve helped Marine Moms-Bethesda bring “Holiday Cheer” to Walter Reed since 2007.  Thank you for caring and for giving your precious time to bring “Holiday Cheer” to the patients and their families at Walter Reed-Bethesda.

"Great Joy For All" Marine Moms-Bethesda "Holiday Cheer"
“Great Joy For All”

“Holiday Cheer” has been one of the events over the years that really touches the heart.  Seeing support come in during the holidays from all over the country for the men and women we serve when they are so far from home is very humbling. They really appreciate your efforts. Thank you for your consideration.


“Holiday Cheer” is two parts:

  1. We are collecting hand-written Holiday cards to give to wounded, injured and ill in-patients and out-patients.  Address is below.  FINAL POSTMARK DATE is Saturday, November 18, 2017.
  2. Adopting two single Marines and a Marine and his or her family through the Wounded Warrior Battalion at Walter Reed.

Cards (screened and bundled) and gifts for the Marines (bought from a “wish list”) will be delivered in December to our contact at Walter Reed and they’ll take it from there.

Would you like to be a Marine Moms-Bethesda Elf?  If so, here’s how!

“Holiday Cheer Cards”

Marine MOms-Bethesda "Holiday Cheer" cards

  • Card bundles will be given to wounded, injured and ill out-patients and in-patients (all service branches) at Walter Reed-Bethesda.


  • We would like to make up a minimum of 50 packets.  If we have enough cards, we’ll make up more.
  • If there are extra card packets left from the initial delivery  at Walter Reed-Bethesda, they will be distributed at other military and VA hospitals.

PLEASE follow our Guidelines for sending cards:

  • Flat-faced cards are best. Please, no glitter or anything that can fall off and get into open wounds.  They can cause secondary infections.  Cards with glitter, flocking, or glue that dries, cracks, and falls off, or little beads, etc., cannot be used.
  • All cards are screened.
  • No need to put the cards in individual envelopes.

Marine Moms-Bethesda "oliday Cheer@ Walter Reed-Bethesda"


We bundle the cards without them.



  • Please use your first name only inside the card.  For security reasons we do not pass on names and addresses to either the recipient or the sender.
  • No enclosures, please.
  • Please rubber band individual signatures together to help making sorting easier for us.  Example: 6 different people wrote their own cards with just their own signature on it, and all of the cards are sent in one box or envelope.  Please bundle each persons’ cards separately.  Our “Elfs” will love you for this!
  • If you wish acknowledgement your cards were received please include an email address. (We won’t spam you, promise!)


Mailing address: The old “Cordova, MD” address is no longer in use and P.O. Box 22 has been closed. Please remove the old address from your address book if you still have it.

Our NEW mailing address is:

Marine Moms Bethesda

P.O. Box 3172

Easton, MD 21601

FINAL POSTMARK DATE is Saturday, November 18, 2017.

Please consider printing a flier to share with others at work, school, church or other places. This would be a great service project for Scouts or school, or a worthwhile activity to include at a VFW, American Legion, Rotary Club, or other meeting.  The flier downloads as a .pdf.

“2017 MM-B Holiday Cheer at Walter Reed Card Campaign Flier”

Marine Moms Bethesda gift for Walter Reed-Bethesda patients

Part 2 – “Marine Elfiness”

We’re adopting a Marine family and two single Marines (male and female) at Walter Reed-Bethesda.  

When the date is closer we’ll have a “wish list” for Santa and the “Elfs” will shop accordingly to bring “Holiday Cheer” to them.  Gifts will be dropped off to our contact at Walter Reed for delivery in early December.  After the holidays we’ll post an After Action Report.

Thank you for helping to bring some “Holiday Cheer” to patients during their recovery at Walter Reed over the holidays while they are so far from home!

If you’d like, you can read about last year’s event here:

Holiday Cheer 2016 AAR

Questions?  Please contact Jane:

Jane (at) MarineMoms (dot) Bethesda (dot) org


AAR – “Holiday Cheer 2016”

giftBeing far from home in a hospital over the Holidays is no fun.

We were grateful to once again have the opportunity to bring some “Holiday Cheer” to recovering Marines at the hospital.


On December 7, 2016 Marine Moms-Bethesda delivered gifts and cards to the Marine Corps Wounded Warrior Battalion-East Detachment at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. This was our 10th year bringing cheer to patients!

The car is packed and ready to head over to Walter Reed!
The car is packed and ready to head over to Walter Reed!







With so few combat patients on the hospital ward, we focused our “Holiday Cheer” efforts on our annual card campaign and adopting three recovering Marines.
Continue reading AAR – “Holiday Cheer 2016”

Holiday Cheer 2015 Updates

Holiday Cheer 2015 logo


Thank you to the Marine Mom-Bethesda “Elfs” who brought Holiday Cheer to Walter Reed!

We love how “Elfs” from different parts of the country show their support during such a special time of year to those we serve!  You are SO appreciated!

Thank You for entrusting Marine Moms-Bethesda as a steward of your donations and gifts in support of our mission of bringing food and comfort items to the injured, ill, and wounded warriors and their families at Walter Reed.

You help brighten their time spent during their recovery at the hospital, and you are more appreciated than you know.  Thank you for caring.


The Holiday Cheer 2015 “Elfs”:  Thank You!

Their very generous donations made this year’s event possible.

Alabama: Barbara

Florida: The Zabel Family;  Cheryl & Ted

Maryland: Choptank Marine Corps League Detachment #439; US Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 21-03; Dina; Jessi

Oregon: Marilyn

Washington: WA State Operation Thank You


The Cards:

“Elf Barb” screened, sorted, and bundled the cards up in a cheery bow. Thank you, Barb!

Thank you, Cards Elves!

Alabama: Barbara

California: “Women in Recovery”

Colorado: Ellen-Alisa

Florida: The Zabel Family, The Frase Family, Marilyn & Crew, and Cheryl.

Maryland: Michelle; Choptank MCL Detachment; Our Lady of Victory/Baltimore grades K, 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5.

Oregon: Marilyn

Card bundleThe hand-written, and sometimes homemade, cards were distributed during our December 6 Holiday Cheer luncheon on the 4th floor to patients either directly, or to their family members to give to their loved ones.  They were given to combat patients, and to “regular” active duty or Veterans who were surgical and cancer patients on the 4th floor. 

The handmade cards were beautiful – no they were gorgeous!  The ones from the kids were great, the blank batch sorted into packets with stamped envelopes were really appreciated, but most of all, the heartfelt notes and thoughts inside the cards were uplifting and encouraging.
Continue reading Holiday Cheer 2015 Updates

Holiday Cheer 2015: Cards and “Elfie-ness”

Holiday Cheer 2015 logo

It’s hard to believe this will be our 9th “Holiday Cheer event”!

Once again we’ll be bringing Holiday Cheer to patients and families so far from home at Walter Reed/Bethesda over the holidays!

This year’s “Holiday Cheer will be a little different and consist of:

  1. A “Holiday Cheer” luncheon on the inpatient surgical ward at Walter Reed, serving all service branches.
  2. “Elfie Gifts” for a Marine family with children, and two single Marines.
  3. “Holiday Cheer” Cards Campaign.

We’re pretty excited, and also honored to have this opportunity to serve those who’ve served us and who are so far away from home during the holidays.

See the Elfie details by clicking “continue” or click here for the AAR.

Please note:
The final postmark deadline for “Holiday Cheer” is Monday, November 16, 2015.

Continue reading Holiday Cheer 2015: Cards and “Elfie-ness”

Holiday Cheer 2014 – Would you like to be an MM-B Elf?

Marine Moms-Bethesda 2014 Holiday Cheer LogoThe holidays are right around the corner and it’s time to plan for “Holiday Cheer 2014”!

We’ll be serving out-patients at Walter Reed during this luncheon. They live on their own or with their caregivers in dorm-like rooms. Many are young, single, and do not have family living with them.

Not all are “combat wounded”, however they are at Walter Reed-Bethesda for medical reasons during active duty service. Our Holiday Cheer event and bi-monthly luncheons are a HUGE morale booster for them!

The event consists of a holiday meal, Christmas stockings, handwritten holiday and Christmas cards from across the USA, cookies baked by our local “Elfs” AND a whoooole lotta CHEER!

“Holiday Cheer 2014” will be on December 4th, 2014. Location: USO. Serving Time: 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM  This event will be limited to 25 wounded, injured, or ill service members and their family members, first come, first served.

Would you like to be a Marine Moms-Bethesda Elf? Sponsor a stocking or send cards! Here’s how!

Continue reading Holiday Cheer 2014 – Would you like to be an MM-B Elf?

Holiday Cheer at Mercy Hall 2013 (Updated Dec. 9, 2013)

2013 Holiday Cheer Logo(Updated Dec. 9, 2013)

It’s hard to believe this will be the seventh year we’ve brought “Holiday Cheer” to Walter Reed/Bethesda!  It’s actually the eighth holiday event if we count when Janelle, Brenda, and I were there in November 2005.  3/1 Marines we or our sons knew were patients on the overflowing combat surgical ward after being wounded in combat.

December 5, “Holiday Cheer at Mercy Hall 2013” Luncheon

A Holiday Meal, Stockings, Cards, and Cookies, with “Elfs” providing support from all over the country made for a Very Merry Day at Mercy Hall!

Gladys and Bob, always early, were there and unloaded when Guy and I arrived around 10:15, with Katie right behind us bringing in adorable gingerbread houses from the Calvert County Hospice’s Festival of Trees Gingerbread House contest.  Ace and the Sailors set up the two buffet tables and Jaime from “Touch of Relief” arrived shortly after to offer free seated massages to our guests.  We missed having Jess with us.  She’s being kept busy by “The Littlest Elf”, her darlin’ new Wee One.  Jess sent the stockings with Bob she and her “Elfs” put together, made possible by individual sponsors and local organizations.

We covered the tables and started the chafing dishes, then began setting out the food and “niftie-gifties”.

Guy putting the finishing touches on the buffet table.
Guy’s putting the finishing touches on the buffet table.


The “Holiday Cheer” luncheon was quieter this year than in past years. The number of troops at the barracks is lower than they have been.  Marines and Soldiers we’ve met over the past year or two have recently been medically discharged, and the ones still living there are kept busier than they used to be just a few years ago.

Stockings, cards, and other items left at the end of the day were taken by Katie, Bob and Guy to 7 East (the Traumatic Brain Injury Ward in the hospital) and the Marine Liaison Office for distribution.

A little bit about Mercy Hall:

Individual living quarters in this small out-patient barracks are equipped with a small fridge and microwave in a dorm-like room with a kitchenette.  Pots, pans, cooking utensils, plates, cups, and silverware are the responsibility of the residents living there.  We recently learned those basic items are no longer provided for them. That ended after the building was remodeled in 2011 due to budgetary restraints.

There is no cafeteria in Mercy Hall.  McDonald’s and a gas station, kind of like a “Quick Stop Shop”, are a short walk away – downhill.  To get to the hospital cafeteria is quite a walk, and the Warrior Cafe in Building 62 is even farther away – uphill.  There is no commissary on base.  Unless they’re able or inclined to cook for themselves, choices for food and meals are limited for these mostly young, single, men and women living on their own. Many have told us they don’t like going over to the Warrior Cafe (it’s too busy for them) and after a long tiring day, they don’t want to walk to the cafeteria.

Physical therapy and other things the out-patients have on their daily schedules are also quite a walk away from where Mercy Hall is located.  Our bi-monthly Thursday luncheons are “drop in and have lunch with us” on a “catch as catch” can basis. Bethesda Naval Hospital and the old Walter Reed Army Medical Center combined in September 2011 and most events for the out-patients are now held in Building 62, on the other side of the hospital.  We are one of very few groups still doing events at Mercy Hall.

One of the 19 year old residents of Mercy Hall said to us,

We love your luncheons! You make it feel like HOME!”

The buffet.

As we were leaving, we told one of the Sailors we met six months ago we’d be back in February.  He said,

“I wish you’d come back in January.”

We asked him,  “Why? Are you leaving before February?”

No, I just like it when you come.  Your food is so good and it beats the Ramen noodles I have back in my room.”

After the chafing dishes start simmering, when you open the door and walk into the lobby the scent of the food reminds you of “Mom’s kitchen” at home on a Sunday afternoon.

Our luncheons are really appreciated by the guys and gals living at Mercy Hall, and we are very grateful for our Supporters and Volunteers who make them possible.

Below is a list of this year’s Holiday Cheer “Elfs”.  Thank you, sincerely, for making the day extra special for the Marines, Sailors and Soldiers we served!

The Holiday Cheer Menu:

Cheese Spread and Crackers
Roasted Turkey
Baked Ham
Mashed Potatoes and Gravy
Cornbread Stuffing
Assorted Rolls
Green Beans
Sweet Potato Casserole
Pasta Salad
Fresh Fruit
Shortbread, Sugar, and Chocolate Chip Cookies
Assorted drinks, including six varieties of Two If By Tea®

Imagine our surprise when 8 cases (96 bottles) of tea arrived by Fed Ex from an anonymous donor!

The car is loaded and ready to go!
I was afraid everything wouldn’t fit in the car, but it did! This didn’t include what Gladys & Bob and Katie were bringing!
Katie's car loaded with the gingerbread houses.
Katie had a full car, too! Love, love, LOVE the gingerbread houses!

Many Thanks to the “Elfs” for helping to spread “Holiday Cheer at Mercy Hall” this year!

Stocking Thank You’s!

Wrapping stocking stuffers25 stockings for the Mercy Hall luncheon!

Bayside Quilters of the Eastern Shore made the stockings.

Elf Jess” – Coordinator & Stocking Stuffer Shopper Extraordinaire

“The Wrapstravaganza Elves'” – Graeme, Jason, Josh, and Rachael wrapped and stuffed the stockings.

“Elf Dina” – Printed the stocking tags.

“Niftie-Giftie Stocking Elf” – Terri in NC sent beau coup styluses and 4 sets of ear-buds to include.

wrapping stocking stuffers“Mr. & Mrs. Rudolph” (aka Gladys and Bob) picked the stockings up from Jess and brought them to the luncheon.

Stocking Sponsors:

16 stockings were sponsored!  Thank You!

Alaska: Jana

Maryland: Suzan

wrapping stocking stuffers

Massachusettes: Barbara

Utah: Torina

Below Right: Women’s stocking stuffers.

Below Left: Men’s stocking stuffers.  The men’s stockings had either a pair of gloves or a bottle opener, plus a Dunkin Donut or a Subway gift card.  (Gift card not pictured.)

stocking stuffers

Thank you for protecting us!Card Thank You’s!

24 packets with 30 cards each!

1,300+ cards total (Extras will be sent elsewhere!)

Elfs – screened, sorted and bundled the cards:

Jane & Lauren

Cards came from:


Sue & the Mountain Valley Community Church “Love Our Troops” Crew

Writing Holiday Cheer notes for Marine Moms_Bethesda's December 5th luncheon at Mercy Hall.
The Choptank MCL Detachment had a table set up at their Marine Corps Birthday Party with cards for Marines and their guests to sign.




Jan Z.

Diana sent beautiful handmade blank cards for the guys and gals to send out their own cards to loved ones.


Choptank Marine Corps League Detachment #439

Our Lady of Victory School – pre-K, K, grades 1, 2, 3, 4, 8, and Brownie Troops 1217 & 984

Bayside Quilters

The “K-Kids Club” at Beach Elementary School






Torina & Family

Holiday Cheer cards ready for ribbon!

The cards are bundled and ready to be tied up with ribbon.

Cards all wrapped up in cheery ribbon!






Here they are at the luncheon. 

“Santa’s Elfs” Thank You’s!

Their “Gifts From the Heart” helped fund the event!


Jan Z.

Joanna & Joel


Choptank Marine Corps League Detachment #439

Easton Rotary Club, Easton, MD

Coast Guard Flotilla Auxiliary, St. Michael, MD


WA State Operation Thank You

Julie & Michelle's CookiesCookie “Elfs” Thank You’s!

39 dozen cookies baked

29 Tins of Cookies

Coordinator:  Elf Chris D.

Elf Lauren packed the tins.

Bakers: Elves Deb McF., Carey D., JoAnn D., Barb C., Nan S., Michelle H., and Julie.

Card, cookie and stocking table
Card, cookie and stocking table

Luncheon “Elfs” Thank You’s!

Grauls’ Market, St, Michaels, MD donated the turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy and rolls.

Main dishes and sides






The Kids who participated in the Gingerbread House Contest at The Festival of Trees benefiting Calvert County Hospice donated 7 Gingerbread Houses for table decorations.

Gingerbread Houses






Two If By Tea(R) Marine Mom Approved“Just An Elf” from somewhere sent 8 cases (96 bottles) of assorted flavors of Two If By Tea® for our “Semper Fi Guys”. [Double-duty – Warriors enjoyed a delicious drink, while proceeds from our donor’s purchase supported Two If By Tea®’s sponsorship of the Marine Corps – Law Enforcement Foundation (MC-LEF), which provides assistance to the children of United States Marines and federal law enforcement personnel who were killed on duty or died under extraordinary circumstances while serving our country.]

And yes, we taste tested the tea to make sure it passed inspection for our Marines, Sailors and Soldiers.

This Marine Mom gives it a “Thumb’s UP!”  (Especially the Raspberry flavor.)

But more importantly, the guys and gals liked it.

The Luncheon Crew!  Thank you, for both your time and your donations of food!

Katie, Gladys, Bob, Guy, and Jane, and Jaime from “Touch of Relief” provided free seated massages.

This was our last “Holiday Cheer” event in Building 50. 

The old barracks is closing in 2014 and being replaced by “Sanctuary Hall”, an outpatient barracks twice the size of Mercy Hall which according to this article, will be serving combat-wounded Warriors and their caregivers in the last stage of rehabilitation as they learn to live on their own before they are medically discharged.

We’ll follow along with them!  Our six Thursday luncheon dates for 2014 have been approved!

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.  May your Holidays be the best ever, and… please keep our military, far from home, whether they be deployed, or across the country from their families, or in a military or VA hospital, and their families in your thoughts and prayers. 

Special thoughts for our Gold Star Families, whose loved ones have paid the ultimate price in service to our country.

Until next time,

Love and Hugs,




2013 Holiday Cheer Stockings








December 1, 2011: “Holiday Cheer at Bethesda 2011”

Marine Moms-Bethesda Holiday Cheer 2011 logo







“Holiday Cheer” is one of our favorite events of the year! 

Thinking about all of the “Elfs” involved, from our hands-on volunteers to the “Elfs” across the country who help make the event possible, it is overwhelming.  Your support and help is deeply appreciated by those who are the recipients of your kindness.

The past several years we have held “Holiday Cheer” at Mercy Hall.  However since the transition of Walter Reed to Bethesda, the dynamics at Mercy Hall have changed and we thought we could better serve our mission by hosting the luncheon on 4 Center, the 4th floor surgical ward, received permission to do so, and forward we went.

Chafing dishes from an "Elf".To our delight and complete surprise an Elf said, “Janie, pick up two chaffing dishes, a popcorn popper, two 6′ portable tables and a 4′ table.  A check’s on the way to cover the cost.”  When I  opened the boxes to wash the chaffing dishes, I thought I had died and gone to Heaven.  A very welcome addition to MM-B’s “Stash of Stuff” for the luncheons!!!  Thank you SO much!!!

Plans for “Holiday Cheer” began this fall when the holiday card collection began.  Information was sent out in our newsletter and on our Facebook page.

Many of our card “Elfs” send year after year.   We begin receiving inquiries about them in August.  Cards started coming in from all over the country in October.  Lots and lots of cards from Florida this year thanks to Jan and her Florida “Elfs” getting the word out.  sorting-the-cards





Always love the cards from “Our Lady of Victory School” in Baltimore – pre-K through 4th grade and their Girl Scout Troop.  This is the third year they have participated in the card collection.  cards-all-tied-up-in-ribbon






One group of cards came to us from Iowa; and there must have been 25 signatures from different people in each card, each signature with a different message to the troops.  Screening the cards is one of my favorite things to do during “Holiday Cheer”.  The messages are very heartwarming.  Each card bundle had approximately 22 to 25 cards.

Once again, Chris and the Bayside Quilters’ Outreach Ladies made the stockings (and sent cards).   Elf Jess did the shopping and with the help of Elf Bobbi and the crew from “Covers and Soles”, wrapped and filled them.

stocking stuffers

Stockings all stuffed















Socks from "Covers and Soles" for the stockings.


Bobby from “Covers and Soles” donated hand-knit socks for the stockings,


Snowman Soup





and “Snowman Soup”.





The Sunday after Thanksgiving, the Cookie “Elfs” packed 60 containers of cookies.

Barb labeling the cookies.

One dozen cookies in each container.  BEAU COUP bunches this year.  “Elfs” who said they would send 4 or 5 dozen cookies sent 10 and 12 dozen.  (Guess what was dessert the day of the luncheon?)



Deb packing cookies.







Okie dokie, cards, stockings, cookies taken care of! Thank you, “Elfs”!

dessertsMenu:  Pickles and olives, cheese platter, roast beef, ham, turkey breast, gravy, mashed potatoes, dinner rolls, macaroni and cheese, green bean casserole, garden salad, cranberry sauce, fruit salad, cake, cookies and brownies, and popcorn, assorted drinks and of course, smoothies.

Jess and Cyd,with Jack and Wayne in the background.
Jess and Cyd,with Jack and Wayne in the background.

When I heard Cyd and Kym from the T.A.M.P.A. group down in Florida were going to be in the area for the Semper Max Wounded Warrior Support Conference I invited them to join us for the luncheon.  Cyd and I have “known” each other online for several years.  I remember when the T.A.M.P.A. group started back in 2004.

Elf Jess offered very welcomed free seated massages to the families on 4 East.  Cyd helped hand out the stockings and cards, kept the desserts flowing and the drink cart filled and helped wherever she saw a need.

Jack and Wayne, from Choptank MCL Detachment, helping us out.
Jack and Wayne, from Choptank MCL Detachment, helping us out.

Jack and Wayne from the Choptank Marine Corps League #439 were our “Santa Marines”.

They have helped out at Mercy Hall luncheons in the past but this was their first visit to the 4th floor.  We love having them join us.




Kym and Kelly, the OOH RAH Girls!
Kym and Kelly, the OOH RAH Girls!

The “OOH RAH Girls”, Kym and Kelly made smoothies, popcorn and helped serve.  This was Kelly’s first time with us.  Her extra pair of helping hands were gratefully appreciated!  Kym’s beautiful smile was as welcome as the Florida sunshine and 82 degree temps she had to leave to come North.

One of the really neat things that happened was when we gave a mom we met several luncheons ago the gift certificates that The Spa Room donated to us back in August.  She and her son will use them.

Cathy, also a new volunteer, Connie, and Katie all seemed to escape the camera.  They were not in one spot long enough to to stand still for a picture!

Julie's Shortbread cookies.
Julie’s Shortbread cookies.

Katie and Connie went down to ICU and invited families up for lunch.  While there, Connie had the opportunity to say hello to a family whose Soldier had attended the Naval Academy while her daughter was there.

We had the pleasure of meeting Shannon Maxwell from Semper Max.  She put a little bug in my ear about the TBI guys… this got my mind whirling… looking forward to some special events just for them next year…

After the patients and families were served, we opened the luncheon up to the Caregivers – staff –  of our Warriors.  Many of them are also far from home and we were grateful for the opportunity to bring some “Holiday Cheer” to them as well.

Thinking about all of the people, donations, hours given from the heart by everyone involved to make this day so special was very humbling to me.

Thank you to our volunteers, our “Elfs” both local and across the country, to the caregivers, and most especially, Thank You to those who have sacrificed so much on behalf of their country and to their families who stand beside them.

Special Thanks To:

Janelle's "Cookie Boys".
Janelle’s “Cookie Boys”.

The Marine Corps Liaison Staff at Walter Reed NMMC, Choptank Marine Corps League # 439, Bayside Quilters – YOU LADIES ROCK!!, Bobbi and “Covers and Soles”, Torina, Jan Z., Mary T., Joanna and Joel, Barbara, and Edgar, and Don, Barb, and Deb McF., Maureen, Mr. Benson,  Chris and Carey, Julie, Janelle, Jen, and Nicholas, and to our “Card Elfs” – Jan Z. and the Florida Roses, Barbara H. in AL, Torina and Friends in Utah, Sally in Texas, Terri in FL, Momma Dee in FL, Marilyn in Oregon, Ellen-Alisa  in CO, Gramma Pam in CA, Mary Ann, DAV 101 and DAVA 101 in FL, the Brod and O’Bannon Families in IN, PMM of Cpl. Bradley in CO, Patricia and Friends in VA, Carrie in Wisconsin, Bayside Quilters in MD, and the Iowa Farm Crew, and I have a feeling I have unintentionally left someone out….

Today’s Luncheon Crew: Katie, Connie, Jess, Cathy, Kelly, Jack, Wayne, Cyd and Kym – Job WELL Done!  Thank you!

Merry Christmas!

Love and Hugs,






4 Comments on “Holiday Cheer 2011″ at Bethesda

1. William “Guy” Ellis on Sun, 18th Dec 2011 00:07

How can I make a cash donation? What goes on the Payee line? To what address do I send it?

2. Jane on Sun, 18th Dec 2011 23:59

A check or money order (no cash please) made out to “Marine Moms Bethesda” may be mailed to:
Marine Moms Bethesda
P.O. Box 22
Cordova, MD 21625
Thank you, Guy!

3. Cyd Deathe on Sun, 18th Dec 2011 21:08

What an honor it was to finally meet you in person (after all these years via the internet) and help with your wonderful Holiday event at the hospital.

You and your organization are doing wonderful things and we are so very proud to know you and be able to work hand and hand when wounded arrive.

Keep up the great work and hopefully sometime soon you can come down tojoin us for one of our events.
Hint / Hint – 5th Annual Run For the Fallen Tampa in August of 2012

4. Jane on Sun, 18th Dec 2011 21:39

It was a pleasure having you with us, Cyd! So glad you and Kym  were able to be there.  Let me know when you have a date set for the Run For the Fallen!

December 2, 2010 – Mercy Hall: “Holiday Cheer at Mercy Hall”

HC 2010 logo“Elfs”, Cookies, Stockings, Cards, and a Holiday Meal!

Here’s our AAR for Holiday Cheer 2010. Thank you to everyone who made it a wonderful success!  You are SO appreciated!!!

“The Elfs”

Some “Elfs” sent gift cards, some sent stocking stuffers and ornaments, and others sent checks to help with the Santa shopping.  They also helped by getting the word out about “Holiday Cheer at Bethesda” by posting on Facebook or on their websites and blogs.

Saying “Thank you” for your unconditional support of our wounded, injured, and ill service members seems inadequate to me. I have difficulty finding words strong enough to express the appreciation and gratitude that comes from the troops and their families when we gave them the stockings, cookies, cards, and food that they weren’t expecting.

So many people have given their time, money, and hearts to help with our event and each one of you have touched many people in extraordinarily wonderful ways that we will never know.

Thank you. We appreciate you.


Thank you to the “Cookie Elfs” – Kate, Barb, Don, Robin, Janelle, Aunt Jeanne and Mr. Russell, Alice, Catherine, Chris and her ladies from Bayside Quilters – Barb C. Kris S., and Marlene, and Grace. Thanks also to Delmarva Blue Star Mothers for helping to fund the cookie tins.

cookie elfs 2010

Jeanne, Janelle, Barb, Don. and Katie gathered together to sort the cookies into cheery tins. Each tin held a dozen assorted cookies.

Just a few of the delicious cookies the Cookie “Elfs” made.


Nope, they’re not mini-burgers. The cuties below were made by Alice and are vanilla wafers with a Peppermint Pattie between them to look like a hamburger, using red and yellow icing to hold them together to look like ketchup and mustard with sesame seeds on top.

We filled 77 cookie containers with at least a dozen cookies in each, and have cookies in the freezer for another luncheon. Grace brought at least 8 more containers with her the day of the luncheon.


the stockings made by Bayside QuiltersStockings were stitched by Bayside Quilters and filled with the help of “Elfs” from all over the country. Thank you Bayside Quilters for your support and dedication to our troops not only for “Holiday Cheer’, but all year long. You have brought so many smiles and so much comfort to the combat troops and their families throughout the year.

They were stuffed with things like this and more,

the stocking stuffers






including hand-knitted hats by Jessi’s friends Cheryl, Tesia, Michelle, Abi, and “Covers & Soles”. Thank you!

handknitted beanies





MassageThank you, Elf Jess, for heading this up! A HUGE project! And thank you for doing massages after you unpacked the stockings.



Thanks also to “Elfs” Jason, Neale, and Erin who helped to wrap and stuff the 65 stockings.

stockings stuffedThe stockings were divided between which ones were best for Mercy Hall and best for 5 East; some for the guys and gals we see every Mercy Hall luncheon (we know what they like); some had more “things” while others had more gift cards.




Cards were sent by people all across the United States from Alaska to Florida, Maine to California, Minnesota to Texas and points in between.  Some just had a signature; some had every spare space filled with words.

2010 Holiday Cheer cards






We made up 60 bundles with 30 to 40 cards in each packet. Thank you “Card Elfs”!

Thank you, Janelle and Katie, for helping to screen them.

The Luncheon:

Thank you to Susie, Grace, Katie, and Jess for the good food!

Menu:  Roast beef, ham, scalloped potatoes, mashed potatoes, salad, rolls, appetizers, pumpkin pie, apple pie, cookies, and smoothies. I probably forgot something.

holiday cheer buffet






cookies and pie






Susie, Grace and HopeHope is interning for her future Naval MOS and is required to do volunteer work as part of the requirements.  She helped Susie and Grace serve the luncheon.


More “Elfie” Stuff:

blanketsBayside Quilters sent quilts as did some groups that are in contact with one of our volunteers.

Melissa from Ohio sent some warm, snuggly, beautiful fleece blankets with cards from the families that made them.

When we finished and packed up at Mercy Hall, Katie and I, with Hope’s help,  went over to the hospital ward to distribute stockings, cookies, and the card bundles.  When we returned to load up the car, the Mercy Hall staff was decorating with what we had left there.

Holiday Cheer Christmas Tree at Mercy HallThis came from Amerina after the event:

“Hey Jane just wanted to thank you and let you know that the boys here at mercy hall enjoyed the stockings and yesterdays treats! I gave the rest of the stockings out at formation and hung the rest of the little stockings but by morning they were all gone. Such a success! Once again me and Pascal front desk staff would like to thank you for including us with your functions here @ mercy Hall Bethesda! I will send pictures of the tree as soon as we get it up. Thank you for funding the decorations.”

Christmas tree in the entryway at Mercy Hall.They ended up decorating two trees, one in the common room and one in the entryway.





Our Choptank Marine Corps League friends were with us.  They helped sponsor “Holiday Cheer”.

Marines at Mercy Hall for Holiday Cheer







Jim (“Old Corps”, 1946 – 1948) sent this out to his friends:

“A luncheon was served at Mercy Hall and gifts, blankets, quilts, canisters of cookies, stockings stuffed with goodies and packets of cards with greetings and thank you for your service were given out to the Marines recovering from wounds received in protecting our country.  The meal was roast beef, and ham with all the trimmings.

Later stockings, cards and cookies were taken to the wards where the non-ambulatory were recovering.

Most moving was when a entire family of brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, mother and father, grandfather and grandmother [just guessing at the relationship] came through the line and took their meal over to the ward to be with their son.  They received gifts as well for him.

Visiting the hospital and seeing the sacrifices of these young servicemen and servicewomen is very humbling.”

We also thank and are grateful for our “Defenders of Freedom” for their dedication and commitment to our country.

Choptank MCL with Marines at Mercy Hall






“A Different Christmas Poem” (Revised)

Wishing all of you a peaceful holiday season and ALL the Best in 2011.

Until next time, continued prayers for our military and their families.

Love and Hugs,


Holiday Cheer at Bethesda 2009 “Elfs”

Holiday Cheer 2009 cookies and stockingsMade possible by “Elfs” across the country!

Thank you so much for being an “Elf” and bringing “Holiday Cheer” to Bethesda Naval Hospital.


2009 holiday cheer stockings

Stockings made by Bayside Quilters of the Eastern Shore,  MD.

Stocking stuffers were sent from: Continue reading Holiday Cheer at Bethesda 2009 “Elfs”

“Holiday Cheer at Bethesda” – Mercy Hall, December 3, 2009

mercy hall 2009 stockings cookies and cards







“Holiday Cheer at Bethesda 2009” at Mercy Hall was an incredible success!

The food was great, the stockings were fun, the cookies were delicious and the cards were the icing on the cake!

”Elfs” across the country helped us fill 65 homemade stockings, sent us over 1000 Christmas cards, and the local “Elfs” baked 100 dozen scrumptious cookies for “Holiday Cheer”.

Our December Luncheon Crew and the Choptank Marine Corps League Detachment served up a full holiday meal including turkey, ham, and all the sides!

Heartfelt gratitude to everyone who made “Holiday Cheer at Bethesda 2009” possible!

Before the Luncheon:

Our goal was to fill 60 stockings, fill 60 containers of cookies with a dozen cookies in each, Continue reading “Holiday Cheer at Bethesda” – Mercy Hall, December 3, 2009