Sunday, December 25, 2011

KFTS Radio Show + Gratitude = Us

We're still on a natural high from our FTSF Variety show last Saturday, December 17th.
When we started the process of creating the event we had no idea what it would look like.
We knew it was time to celebrate. The KFTS Variety Show was our 39th event and it was time to bring together musicians, food, foundations and friends that have been supporting us for the first time or the thirty-ninth time....yes indeed, it was time to celebrate.

And it looked a little something like this...

Words cannot explain the feelings Cat, Vallie & I have the day after an event. Happiness, bitter sweet sorrow, excitement, inspiration, love...well, I guess those are just a few...but mostly gratitude. We're grateful that we can coordinate an event that brings all of us together in laughter, music, food and celebration.
We couldn't do any of this without YOU friends - old and new - so from the bottom of our hearts to the top of our souls....THANK YOU for showing up and supporting musicians, restaurants, venues, artists, locals, worthy foundations and Feeding the Soul.

Happy Holidays from our soul to yours,
Cat, Vallie and Mel

View some photos by Natalie Warr Photography here.

Thank you to our sponsors!!!
Harney's Sushi, Oceanside
Neuroscience Institute Performing Arts Program
Redfearn & Associates
Olive PR Solutions
SuperFood Drive
Jitters Coffee Pub, Oceanside
West Coast Coffee
Bitchin' Sauce
California Avocado Grill, Escondido
Nika Water
Anita's, Oceanside
Flying Pig, Oceanside
Twisted Oak Winery, Murphy's California

Thank you to our amazing photo and video volunteers who make us look good...
Natalie Warr Photography
Boyte Creative

And a HUUUUUUGE thank you to our iPods...and the sound tracks to our hearts...
Broadway West - where kids explore the love of the arts
Voices of Prayze
Bob Taylor, Andy Powers & Todd Cooper
Jack Tempchin
The Makepeace Brothers
Jessie Payo
Raining Jane
Our hilllllarious host Justin Willman


Thursday, March 31, 2011

March events...wooowza!

Wow friends! I am completely amazed at how much fun we had at our March events! THANK YOU for helping create these two very special nights of community and THAT is creative generosity at its finest.

Our Raining Jane show at Linksoul Lab created 4.5 scholarships for the Rock n Roll Camp for Girls, LA. That means 4 girls will be able to enjoy a week of empowerment through music education....annnnd get to spend time with 4 of the most ammmazing women I have ever met.
Thank you Becky, Chaska, Mai and Mona for allowing us to contribute to such a great organization and for bringing sooo much love and fun to Oceanside! We love Raining Jane!

Thank you to our dear friend...and global do-gooder Jason Mraz (and Toca too) for bringing your beautiful energy and songs...what a wonderful surprise!!! We love you so.

Another wonderful surprise...LIVE ART by our dear friend Jon Marro. Jon is an inspiring friend with so much creativity....thank you Jon for sharing it with us and for always being love. Jon's art was auctioned off and help raise an additional $1,000 for the scholarships. Amazing.

And to all our Raining Jane much gratitude to YOU and your love and support!!!

Now let's talk Nutrition Awareness CELEBRATION with the Makepeace Brothers and Matty & Avasa!!!
Our dear friends at SuperFood Drive inspired us to have our own food drive and bring music, healthy foods and art together. As the day came together (before the doors opened) I knew this event was going to be high energy and fun. It's rare you get a glimpse behind the scenes where Vallie & I go shopping with a $200 gift donated by Jimbos, SuperFood-ers and Colin AND Vallie prepare food for 100+ attendees, I work on the raffle coordination, Ruthi runs around picking up donations for the raffle, sound check fills the empty venue with harmony, our volunteer friends Natalie, Nicolle, Philly & Allie come early to help me in my state of frenzy and Cat runs off to pick up last minute equipment in the hills of much many wonderful volunteers...all come together to create an unforgettable night with YOU!

How about the Love Couple...Matty & Avasa Love...beautiful!!! What an honor to help spread their music to our Oceanside community.

Again we were blessed to have more Live Art! Thank you to our SUPERFRIEND Jason! His masterpiece helped raise an additional $800 for SuperFood Drive which helps with 3,200 meals to those in need. YES!

The Makepeace Brother's energy is amazing. They give us songs that make us think, dance, give thanks and support our heroes. I have been a fan for years and support their messages through their music. There is something about their sound that gives me the comfy feeling of home...the music I listen to as a child with my family full of musicians. I am so honored to have created this night with them. I love you guys!

Way to dance friends!!!

To sum up our month of contribution during our 12-months of giving...YOU helped gift $1,860.00 to the Rock n Roll Camp for Girls, LA annnnd $1,760.00 (7,200 meals) to SuperFood Drive as well as 304lbs (250 meals) of healthy food to North County's Food Bank...not bad for 2 nights of music and fun huh?
Let's do this again sometime shall we?

So to all the friends, family, sponsors, volunteers, dancers, singers, artists, restaurants, organizations and do-gooders....THANK YOU for being a part of our very special March.
Much love and gratitude,
~ Melissa and Team FTSF ~

A special thanks to Linksoul Lab, Olive PR Solutions, Nika Water, Natalie Warr Photography, Kindred Journey, The Naked Cafe, Creme of the Crop, Gina & Michael's Blown Glass, Jitters Coffee Pub, Stone Brewery, Spoken Glass, Chuao Chocolates, Jimbo's...Naturally, Sushi by Colin, Jennifer Cupcake and Redfearn & Associates. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Feeding your SuperKids

Okay, so as you may remember...on December 18th we had our CD Release party where we raised over $8,000 for the Lewy Body Dementia Association. We chose LBDA to celebrate Vallie's mother, Mrs. Norma, and her beautiful life. We were also inspired by our new friend Ruthi Solari of SuperFood Drive and wondered how we could contribute to her organization that believes in "Giving the Gift of Health by providing nutrient dense non-perishable food items to populations in need." So we agreed that our CD sales from our CD release party would be donated to SuperFood Drive....115 CDs and $2,300 later we handed a check to Ruthi and asked her to let us know what great things were to become of that money.
This is us. This is SuperRuthi.

Little did we know that our donation would help develop a program to raise awareness in schools about hunger, healthy eating and good nutrition, which if you are listening to the news lately they estimate that childhood obesity has more than tripled in the past 30 years. Yikes. Being that Vallie & I both come from the child development field this seemed like a perfect fit for us. Oh, and we love us some healthy eats too.

A message from Ruthi...
"SuperFood Drive is grateful and excited to use the $2,300 from FTSF CD sales to assist with the launch of our pilot program for SuperKids for SuperFoods (SKSF), which is a service-learning program to raise awareness about three concepts: hunger in the local community, healthy eating and good nutrition, and how to fight hunger with healthy food!

In addition to an educational presentation, students are empowered with a tool kit to host their very own SuperFood Drives. Students learn how to ask for healthy non-perishable food items (such as black beans instead of refried with lard, whole grains and fruit canned in its own juice instead of high fructose corn syrup) as well as how to ask peers, parents and local organizations for food donations. By hosting their  own SuperFood Drive, students learn how to Give the Gift of Health to themselves and to populations in need in their local community. SKSF empowers future leaders with a transformative experiences that includes providing a (healthy) service to the community. Lastly, each SuperKids for SuperFoods program culminates with a nutrition night for parents and community members complete with samples and cooking demos on how to use the healthy SuperFood non-perishables. This funding contributes to the creation of a concrete SKSF pilot model in the Chula Vista and City Heights community which will help obtain further funding for more sustainable, ongoing programming."

It's been such a pleasure to work with Ruthi and her team that we decided to partner up with them for Nutrition Awareness Month and create an event where you will be educated, entertained, feed and inspired!!! Our event is also a SuperFood Drive where you can bring a item off the SuperFood Shopping list and be entered for our SuperRaffle.

Thank you, SuperFood Drive, for bringing awareness and transformation to food drives and our children.
~ Melissa

For more information on SuperFood Drive and the SuperKids Program please find them at:

Come celebrate with us...

Monday, March 7, 2011

Happy Soul-iversary!!!

Happy Anniversary to Feeding the Soul!!!

It was one year ago that our founder, Vallie Gilley, created the first Feeding the Soul Event! It started as our community coming together for a fun night of dinner and music to donate money to Brother Bennos Soup Kitchen...and I, Melissa Grove, was there! I had an event the weekend before and I was still on that high so having another event just seemed like the natural way to increase the high...and it did! The next few days after the events Vallie and I did nothing but smile and talk about our friends, family and supporters that jumped in and created the best night ever! I clearly remember her looking at me with a big smile and happy eyes..."Wanna keep going?" she said.
"Um.YEAH!!!!" I said. And that was a year, 20+ events, $40,000+, a compilation CD and mmmmany songs ago. I have enjoyed each breakdown, breakthrough, lesson, manifestation, hug and macaroon with all my heart.
And with that I say...HAPPY ANNIVERSARAAAY!!!

Wanna keep going? UMMMM.YYYYEAHHHHH!
Love you all,
Melissa Maria Grove
Promoter of the Soul

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

February - A month of giving to our furry friends

Helen Woodward Animal Center...Creating a Humane World for Animals and People.
Vallie and I took a tour of the Helen Woodward Animal Center on January 20th. It was a special day for me being that it would have been my mother's 89th birthday and knowing how much she loved animals (cats in particular) it just seemed like the perfect thing to do on her day.

We met with 2 amazing women of the center...Renee and Nedra. I was super nervous because I tend to tear up around cute animal faces. However, what they do at the Helen Woodward Animal Center is much more than I had anticipated. I did some research on them...but actually BEING there and seeing all the different!!! I was speechless...and yes I cried...but more so tears of happiness for all the positive things they do for our furry friends.

At the center, located in the hills of Rancho Sante Fe, children and adults with special needs can take part in the therapeutic horseback-riding program...people from animal centers all around the world come to their conferences, and the center hosts camps for children to learn compassion and kindness through animals. (Apparently now-a-days children are desensitized to these!) These are just a few of the programs personal favorite AniMeals.

The AniMeals program provides free pet food for dogs and cats of the elderly and disabled. This was started by a clever lady a while back who saw that the elderly who participate in the Meals on Wheels program would rather feed their hungry pets the food before feeding themselves. THAT is how much we love our pets! It's so great that the center has paired up with Meals on Wheels to give both the elderly and their pets a full belly. Sometimes pets are all the elderly have and they bring them so much joy, companionship and a responsibility. I know this because my 91 year old father has a kitty named Thomas...and they are the best of friends. :)

Soooo after our wonderful tour of cats, dogs, horses (large and mini), tortoises, and goats we were inspired to have a portion of our February events go to the Helen Woodward Animal Center. We're also donating 50% of our CDs sales for February to them as well. Annnnd...if you come to a show, please bring a can (or 10) of Whiskas, Friskies and Pedigree food for both dogs and cats for their AniMeals program. We will have a bin all month long at stop in and get a treat...while leaving a treat for the AniMeals.

When I asked where the money will go Renee replied "To the adoptions." The center takes in any animal that is without a home and sometimes that includes nursing them back to their perfection. Monies are always needed in the adoption program.

There are beautiful cats, kittens, pups and dogs there that would love a home so please spread the word of this amazing center and join us in February as we contribute to the Helen Woodward Animal Center and our furry faced friends.
2/5 - Parker Ainsworth & Jessie Payo at Jitters
2/12 - Carlos Olmeda & Jessica Bell at Jitters

2/26 - Alysse Fischer & Kellen Malloy at Jitters

Thank you to Nedra & Renee for the work they do!
Thank you to Parker, Jessie, Carlos, Jessica, Alysee & Kellen for sharing their talent to help contribute to our animal friends
Thank YOU for being a part of our journey in creative generosity!
In love & contribution,

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Uplifting the dignity of those we serve

As I climb into bed tonight I am reminded how grateful I am for my partner Clayton. He is my best friend, lover, boyfriend, coworker and coconspirator in life.  As he sleeps next to our very small faced 18 pound cat Bella, breathing rhythmically all warm and dreamy I smile and am aware again how truly blessed we are. In knowing this we live a life of service to our families our community and customers. It’s been 14 transformational years and it only gets better as we get older. I feel like we have an advantage because of the model my parents have been to us.

Tomorrow is my parents 50 wedding anniversary. I am amazed at life and how we need to choose all of it, the good the bad and everything in between. My mother and father have had an incredible run at it, successful in all aspects. They have the family, home, careers, travel, love, passion, growth, loss, laughter, anger, challenges, peace and happiness. I believe this is called marriage you know for better or worse, richer or poorer in sickness and in health. I think it goes something like that.

Their roles changed when my mother was diagnosed two years ago with Lewy Bodies Dementia, their lives altering forever. But falling off the horse they both rallied and got back in the saddle together and carried on.  She let him take care of her knowing what the conclusion would be surrendering to have help, support and assistance at all times. My dad yielding to the idea that for once in his life he can’t make something better of fix it. With no regrets and resentment they live day to day. My mother’s disease progresses and she has lost all use of her body and speech they still continue to uplift each other by really cherishing the time they get to share everyday. My mother if asked would never of course want to be in this situation, there is no dignity one might say in being feed, changed, bathed and cared for. But that’s not true not even a little. To be of services is the most gratifying form of love. And being witness to this has made my life miraculous.

This month the Feeding The Soul Foundation is sponsoring Brother Benno’s Soup Kitchen. They are a true example of service and their motto is uplifting the dignity of those they serve. An all volunteer based organization raising awareness and feeding the hungry each and every day. Brother Benno’s is the reminder that there is no shame in needing help ever. It takes you and I to make community so a portion of January tickets for all FTSF concerts, CD’s and merchandise sales will benefit and provide for those in need.  Thank you for being of service………

Soup, Soap, Hugs, Hope = Unconditional Love
In service, love and gratitude,


Monday, January 10, 2011

A Thank you to our sponsors...from Vallie

Hi Friends,
I woke up this morning with a smile on my face, love in my heart and gratitude for my life. I started thinking about sponsorship and life and community and well…
Sponsorship means many things, simply it’s a form of backing, funding, aid, finance protection and support and as I reflect on the holidays and our CD release event I realize how sponsorship shows up for Feeding The Soul Foundation. Our mission is creative generosity and a lot of people ask us what this means well here is an example. 

I personally can’t write a check for $5000.00 or even $500.00 dollars to a good cause. I’m sure some of you could but for me abundance shows up differently. I or we still write the checks to organizations but out of a communal contribution. We have a concert with a cause, a party for a purpose or a night of acknowledgement and everyone gains. You get to be part of a great show or event and with your dollars we contribute to the musicians to support the arts and the lucky recipient with our dollars. We all win!  
Together we feed the hungry, empower young musicians, race for the cure, free slaves, create safe homes, fight disease, support others, help Haiti, acknowledge love, supply kids for school and feed souls.

Another example was December 18th CD release, Feeding the Soul couldn’t pay for a venue or 23 musicians, production, sound, lights, pay for permits and insurance, buy food, alcohol, supplies, buy a tent 30 x 60 make that two tents because of rain or serve hot coffee and chai, take photos and promote this event and produce a CD by myself or even with the three ladies behind Feeding the Soul Foundation. But as a community and a community of enrolled drivers we can. The end result is an amazing, magical, life changing for some of us evening, full of joy, hope, love, music food, spirits and laughter.

All the Musicians
West Coast Coffee Roasters
The Rogers Group
All Volunteers 
All Ticket purchasers past, present and future

We are so blessed to be in a community with you and together we can be the change we want to see in the world. As a mater of fact we already are. Happy 2011

In gratitude and love~