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Defenders of the Realm

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Hello there!  It's Nicole here, founder of Lux Illume.  If you know me at all, you know my heart beats for our military, police, fire and other first responders.  My husband is an Air Force veteran.  My step-brother is an active Green Beret.  My sister is a police officer and tactical team Negotiator; her fiance is a Lieutenant of a police force and tactical team Operator.  Both of my Grandfathers served - one in the Army and one in the Navy.  We are a warrior family.

We grew up in the aerospace industry outside of Edwards Air Force Base.  My father was a contractor for the military so we were surrounded by the best of the best...the ones who keep up foreign relations through inverted communications via hand signals (that's in there just for you Dad!).  My childhood heroes were the test pilots and support personnel that would gather at our home for different functions.  No conversation could last 30 seconds without the classic hand gestures mimicking aerial maneuvers.  We were very close and a tight-knit community.  And we were all as patriotic as they come.

Fast forward to 2003.  I'm living here in Oklahoma, married to my awesome husband and he tells me a story from when he served...one that 17 years later would become the catalyst for our newest candle collection. 

It was Winter in early 1989. I had been on TDY at RAF Alconbury in England. Man it was so cold and damp - it just cut right through you.  My TDY was for 2 or 3 months and I worked 16-18 hours every day - no weekends or days off, it didn't work like that. If I was lucky, I'd sleep from about 10am to 3pm and then I'd have to head back in.
I had a room at a hotel in St. Ives, England, it wasn't too far from the base. I got abrupt orders one night at about 2am - I was headed back to the states ASAP. So I ran over to the hotel to collect my belongings and check out. I got there, bone tired, and damp from the cold winter rains.
I walked in to check out and was met by a balding little old man. Here he was at 2:30 in the morning behind the desk with a full coat, tie and vest. That's just the British way...anyway, we got to small chit chat talking about my work, the weather and all the usual pleasantries. As I said my goodbyes, in his thick British accent, the little old man said “life is not easy for the defenders of the realm."

That story has stayed with me and has become the heartbeat of this collection. This is for all of the defenders out there. The invisible and unsung warriors who are working tirelessly and thanklessly in dark cold nights, bright summer days and everything in between. This is for them - the defenders of the realm.

Now, one last thing before you go...with a new collection comes new charities to share our profits with.  This collection was especially important to me and I couldn't narrow it down to just one.  So I chose 3.  Yes, 3.  First, to honor the police, fire and first responders, we'll be making donations to the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation.  This is a fantastic group that helps purchase expensive equipment for smaller departments that may not have the bigger budgets others are afforded.  Second, to honor the military and their families - who equally make a sacrifice - we'll be sharing profits with the Gary Sinese Foundation.  These guys truly put their money where their mouth is and there's minimal administrative "fluff."  They're doing real work for real families and I can't wait to send in our first donation.  Lastly, we're supporting Team Rubicon.  This is an incredible organization that leverages military veterans' expertise in mobilization, logistics, health, demolition, search and rescue and these men and women are no joke some of the FIRST on the ground when responding world-wide to natural disasters. The plus side - suicidal veterans who get involved with Team Rubicon now have a purpose again. It's literally saving lives for those affected by the disasters and those doing the volunteering.  They even helped here in Moore after the 2013 tornado.  Read the book Charlie Mike if you want a glimpse of how team Rubicon got started.

Enough from me - I'm super passionate about all this and can go on for hours, lol.  I just wanted to give you a proper introduction into the Warrior Collection.  I'll be back soon with more info on the scents, how they were developed, and the significance of the names behind them.


fire first responders military police warrior collection

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