Help Faye Help PAALS


This is Faye. Faye is spending the week at Blue Ridge High School helping to raise money for PAALS. PAALS is truly changing lives - people with autism, PTSD, and mobility challenges. I know they changed mine.

If you want to learn more about PAALS, check out their website at

If you want to help, donate here through Made By Mer, and I will match your donation up to $1500.00.

You can donate through the website or by dropping a check off to 112 Water Mill Rd, Greer made out to Blue Ridge High School.

Sami and I say thank you in advance!


Raise the Woof with Sami

Sami's ready to "Raise the Woof!" - Join him in making a difference!

Made By Mer is partnering with Hillcrest High School during Spirit Week to raise money for PAALS.  You can help by donating any amount to Made By Mer through Friday, February 3rd.

Made by Mer will match all donations up to $1,000 - let's get this party started.


Eagle Scout Project Supporting Veterans

Will and RC

Will and RC

Mattox Boyce, a friend and neighbor, has chosen to hold a supply drive for PAALS for his Eagle Scout project. He would specifically like to support the PAALS Rob's Best Friend Fund whose goal is to provide service dogs to our public servants who are in need without requiring them to fund raise to support the service.

PAALS believes that these individuals have already served us and should be repaid with our support in their time of need.

Mattox will also be working to raise awareness about the benefits of service dogs and will be talking at Scout meetings, Army and Navy alumni groups and perhaps even other veteran groups. Sami and I hope to join him at some of these meetings.

I asked Mattox why he selected PAALS for his Eagle Scout project. 

I selected PAALS as my Eagle Scout project for two main reasons. First, my family has military ties and I have read many stories about how service dogs have helped veterans such as Purple Heart Winner and former Clemson football player Daniel Rodriguez that suffer from PTSD successfully return to everyday life. Secondly, I have personally seen the positive impact Sami has had on your life and I want to help someone else receive the positive benefits of a service dog.
— Mattox

Mattox was also inspired by watching a video of Will, a veteran with PTSD who has a PAALS service dog. Will credits his service dog, RC, for saving his life. I agree with Mattox, the video is impactful - I hope you will watch it!


Mattox has already held a supply drive and spent an afternoon educating the community about PAALS, Service Dogs and Rob's Best Friend Fund!

Make Some Noise for Turquoise!

October is Dysautonomia Awareness Month - which is a good thing - because although it isn't considered a rare condition, a lot of people have never heard of it.  

What is Dysautonomia?

Dysautonomia is an umbrella term used to describe several different medical conditions that cause a malfunction of the Autonomic Nervous System. The Autonomic Nervous System controls the "automatic" functions of the body that we do not consciously think about, such as heart rate, blood pressure, digestion, dilation and constriction of the pupils of the eye, kidney function, and temperature control. People living with various forms of dysautonomia have trouble regulating these systems, which can result in lightheadedness, fainting, unstable blood pressure, abnormal heart rates, malnutrition, and in severe cases, death. 

Dysautonomia is not rare. Over 70 million people worldwide live with various forms of dysautonomia. People of any age, gender or race can be impacted. There is no cure for any form of dysautonomia at this time, but Dysautonomia International is funding research to develop better treatments, and hopefully someday a cure for each form of dysautonomia. Despite the high prevalence of dysautonomia, most patients take years to get diagnosed due to a lack of awareness amongst the public and within the medical profession. 

Take the initiative to like DI's facebook page - just for the  month of October.  They will post all kinds of interesting facts and stories about individuals overcoming (inspiring I promise), and it just might help you help someone else!

Information taken from Dysautonomia International Website

Be a Part of Something BIG

You may already know this, but my service dog Sami came from Palmetto Animal Assisted Life Services (PAALS).  The organization means a lot to me, but not for the obvious reason of Sami being the most amazing dog you will ever meet, or even the fact that he has literally changed my life.  I learned a lot during the 2 years I knew PAALS before I got Sami.  It was eye opening to see so many volunteers give so unselfishly to make a difference in MY life.  And beyond that, PAALS existed in the Executive Director's home - she could have 20 dogs living in her home at any one time, and PAALS staff and volunteers always coming and going.  It all seemed a little unbelievable to me at first, and then I began meeting people through PAALS who either already had a service dog or were on the waiting list to receive one.  I met people who were ill, people who had lost limbs, people who had been in car accidents and were now in a wheel chair, and people who had served our country and were now basically homebound with PTSD, Then it all became very clear - why so many people were giving so much - and it inspired me to want to help others too.

Sami doesn't make me different, he makes me one of the girls.  

Sami doesn't make me different, he makes me one of the girls.  

PAALS finally moved out of the Roger's home and into a facility in late August.  Ten days later, a sewer main downstream of the PAALS sewer connection clogged up and the new PAALS building was flooded throughout with 4 inches of raw sewage. The sewage company doesn’t feel responsible. The county doesn’t feel responsible. PAALS insurance has an exclusion for sewage backup. Now the PAALS building is closed and all of the PAALS service dogs in training are spread out into volunteer’s homes until it can reopen.

PAALS needs our help, and the bottom line is - YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE.  In dog terms, it takes a "pack" and all of us doing something will come together to be BIG.  Getting PAALS back on their paws does more than give puppies back their home - it gives independence, mobility, and peace of mind to people who have some difficult circumstances in life. Wouldn't you want the same?  


Please give - You can donate to PAALS via GoFundMe or their website.  

Girls Scout Troop #2549 Knows Where It's At!

I love Girl Scout Troop #2549 for so many reasons.  They helped me and my family 4 years ago when I was raising money to get Sami.  They hosted the Great Woof Lodge which was an event with amazing spaghetti and a raffle where everyone won a prize (it was awesome).  And it didn't end there; these girls have continued to support PAALS with things like raising money at their schools or taking gifts to PAALS at Christmas, and they even had a second Great Woof Lodge.  

Last Spring, PAALS bought a building to become their new facility and volunteers worked all summer to get it ready.  They moved in the beginning of August, and 10 days later had a flood that damaged a lot.  Needless to say, I wasn't surprised when I heard that the GS Troop #2549 was gathering today to make raised dog beds for PAALS and were going on a shopping spree to get things for PAALS that they need right now.

Gifts for the PAALS dogs.

Gifts for the PAALS dogs.

Thank you Girls Scout Troop #2549 for being willing to spend your weekend helping others - you are an inspiration for me and others!  

Shout out to Greenville veterinarians that help PAALS

PAALS is working to get puppies in the upstate through their Prison PAALS program. Hopefully before the end of the year, they will have 4 pups in the area - this means opportunities for more people to get involved with this amazing organization here in Greenville.

Sami's vet, Dr. Davis at East Greenville Animal Hospital has partnered with PAALS to take care of three of the puppies that will be growing up here.  For PAALS, Dr. Davis is a Valued Veterinarian partner and is an integral part of the PAALS team.  PAALS still needs more Valued Veterinarian partners - if you are a veterinarian interested in participating, you can contact PAALS at or (803) 788-7063.

Today, Sami and I attended an open house at Crosswinds Animal Hospital.  They are also supporting PAALS by donating a portion of things that they sell to PAALS (thank you Crosswinds!).  We had a really great time and got to meet another PAALS client who is waiting for a PAALS Ministry dog.  




Life Rolls On

Sami and I went to the most amazing event on the beach today put on by a charity called "Life Rolls On."  Life Rolls On was founded by Jesse Billauer - who was a surfer on the verge of going pro when he suffered a spinal chord injury and became a quadriplegic. The organization is designed to give "hope, independence, freedom, happiness, and inspiration."  Check out their website at

There were hundreds of volunteers - all helping physically disabled people surf.  They would roll them out into the water in specially designed wheel chairs where a team of people would put an individual on a surf board and stay with them while they were able to ride waves into the beach. The cheering was heartfelt and there were smiles all around - on the surfers faces, on the volunteers and on those that were only watching.

I was truly inspired.  I found out that this is the second year in a row Life Rolls On has sponsored an event at Carolina Beach and that they will likely be back next year due to local support, and I hope to help next year.  If there is ever an event in your area - don't miss it!

It's the Little Things

My service dog Sami is trained to get his exercise by fetching a tennis ball - and he loves it.  He also loves to chew, and no matter how you slice it, Sami goes through at least a tennis ball a day. While it doesn't seem like much, a couple of cans of balls a week adds up.  

Last week, my mom put out on facebook that we would love to have old tennis balls for Sami.  We couldn't believe the response we got - tennis balls showed up on our doorstep for four days - it really was like Christmas around here.  We all got so excited as the bags kept coming - and it was more than just the fact we are now stocked for the summer.  It really made us feel good that people - whether we knew them or not - were willing to take their time to drop off tennis balls for my service dog.  It made such an impact on us - we are beyond grateful for the kindness we were shown.

It's the little things - and these acts of kindness just really made me stop and think about how I can impact others with small acts of kindness.  I'm keeping my eyes and ears open to ways I can make a difference in someone else's life!

I'm giving, will you?

Midlands Gives starts tonight at midnight and it's a great way to support a charity because your dollars are multiplied!  Check out to find out how to make a difference with a donation of $20 or more.

PAALS, the organization I got Sami from is one of the charities that Midlands Gives supports. PAALS has been operated out of their founder's home for many years, and the money they receive from this campaign will go towards a desperately needed new facility and to help fund service dogs for veterans with PTSD (check out the video below to see how PAALS helps veterans).

The best times to donate are during the power hours when PAALS can earn more $ at 6am-7, noon-1, 7pm-8pm. Every 100 dollar donation made between 5-5:15pm will also get matched. And, PAALS has an anonymous donor who will match anytime up to $2500!  Join Sami and I in making a difference!

May is EDS Awareness Month

Researchers say 1 in 2500 to 1 in 5000 people have Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS). EDS is a connective tissue gene disorder that basically means that the collagen in your body isn't structured correctly.  Yes, this can cause a lot of problems anywhere that collagen is found - skin, muscles, tendons and ligaments, blood vessels, organs, gums, eyes....

I was lucky to get diagnosed quickly so that I could manage my symptoms and do things to protect my body.  Because so many aren't aware of EDS and its how it effects multiple body systems - many aren't diagnosed for years. This is why EDS awareness is so important, and you can help spread the word.

We're all on social media - consider downloading the image above and posting it on your page with a link to Ehlers Danlos National Foundation where people can find out more:  Or - just share this post on your page - go ahead - it's easy!


There is always a way!

One thing I've learned over the past five years is that there always a way to get involved and make a difference.  And, not only does it make you feel good, it's a lot of fun to be a part of a community helping others.  I'm going to use this blog to post ways to get involved with Made By Mer supported charities - even if you don't need a website!  Try it, you'll like it:).