Monday, December 27, 2010

A Christmas Miracle

Christmas Eve brought good news. REALLY GOOD NEWS!
My director and his wife were at MD Anderson for nearly two weeks. If you read the post prior to this one, you know they found a mass on her pancreas but were unable to get a biopsy for it. MD Anderson had the technology to deal with it and so they went there.
On the eve before Christmas Eve I received a message that it wasn't a mass after all but rather scar tissue from all the pancreatitis she had been dealing with. So there is no cancer.
And it looks like they will be able to control the problem with medications!
They were able to come home for Christmas and are now back at MD Anderson for more tests and possible treatments.
What a wonderful gift we were given! Prayers have been answered.
What I have learned from this is that even when you think there is no way things can get better, God is BIG enough!
Just after they went to MD Anderson, I had a donor come into my office. She had called me earlier about a special patient and we had shared a moment-a moment that God could do big things.
She had a bracelet that her church was giving out in support of this young woman she had called me about. It said simply "God is BIG enough"
I took that bracelet and have worn it since then.
No matter what your religion is or your particular thoughts on prayer, remember that God is BIG enough to handle whatever we have.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Really, that long?

Really has it been that long since I last posted? Can't be. But it has.
I haven't been stitching much at all. I haven't even thought about the next Relay For Life project.
The quilts went over really well. But the one request I get over and over is for something to sell as an individual item rather than a raffle.
So I think we will do ornaments again. I need to figure out which pattern. But generally any one of the several I have posted patterns for will work.
The past month or so has been really hard on me. My director's wife, who is an absolute angel, has a mass on her pancreas. No small mass. It is located on the valve where the blood supply goes from the pancreas to the liver. They tried to do a biopsy, but were unsuccessful.
They are now at MD Anderson in testing. The mass will have to be removed and that is no small task. And then there is the biopsy to see whether it is malignant or benign.
We have all been in prayer over this. She is such a faithful Christian and is just precious. I keep reminding myself this is why I Relay. But this is too close to home.
And it is so close to Christmas, which is her favorite holiday. Chances are she will be in the hospital for Christmas. Yuck. So Christmas will have to come to her.
Please pray for a miracle. We need one here. A big Christmas miracle.
Now, I refuse to end this post with bad news. It is Christmas. We have been blessed in so many ways. You have blessed me. You have brought joy to me. I hope I have done the same for you.
I found out recently that my youngest grandson Craig has taken it upon himself to pray for all the grandmas and great grandmas in his family. "Dear Looorrrrd, thank you for my family. And thank you for grandma, mo-mo, GG, abuella and all the grandmas. Please don't let a tornado or hurricane hit the house. And please don't let any space aliens come down from outer space. Amen."
At least we know we are up there with the big stuff, hurricanes and space aliens.
And to all a goodnight.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Stop childhood cancer

A friend who lost her son to cancer posted this. I had to share it.
"Tonight, as you tucked your healthy kids into their own beds,or snuggled with them in yours,somewhere in some hospital,46 sets of parents were looking at their babies in shock after being told cancer had just invaded their lives. Tonight, 7 sets of parents are spending their first night without their children. IT pisses me off.STOP CHILDHOOD CANCER!"
Let's keep up the fight until we don't have to fight anymore.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Survivor walk, and Relay wrap up

video
We had a great time at Relay last year, but I won't lie. This year's Relay For Life was tough. I don't know why. Maybe it is because I did 3 Relays. Maybe it is because of the health challenges I had. But whatever it was, I am glad we did it and glad it is over.
I finished up last night with $940 total. I came to Relay last night with $909 in the bag and got another $31 at Relay.
I was disappointed that we finished up $60 under our goal of $1000 for this Relay. Then an amazing thing happened. My friend Debra messaged me on Facebook and said, you got your $60. WOW! WE DID IT! WE MADE $1000 at the Waco Relay For Life!
That brings our total for all three Relays to $2276. OVER $2000 MADE FOR AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY RELAY FOR LIFE!
I didn't do this alone. I did it with a lot of help from you, my friends. A LOT OF HELP. And I love each and every one of you for all your help. I talked a lot about you last night.
God bless each and every one of you. You have made a difference!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Monday, October 4, 2010

New breast cancer awareness pattern

There is a new breast cancer awareness pattern at By the Bay Needleart blog
Hop over there and check it out. It is really cute!
And don't forget that October is breast cancer awareness month. When was the last time you were felt up?
The Waco Relay For Life is less than 2 weeks away. I am excited, but really ready for it to be over with. This year has been a tough one. Hopefully we will raise lots and lots of money for all the good things American Cancer Society does for local cancer patients!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

What could be better?

What could be better than this ornament made by a friend?

Well, 5 more ornaments made by friends!

You might recognize the first ornament as the one I posted before stitched by Janice B. The others were stitched by Trudy E, Barb B., Laurie D. (breast cancer survivor also) and Shiela F.
These kind ladies heard my plea for ornaments for the breast cancer survivor volunteers and stitched these, with the request that I finish them into ornaments. I was very happy to do that.
And we had such a great turnout for the plea with more ornaments than needed for the volunteers, so I asked them if I could use these for fundraising for Relay For Life. They said yes, so this Saturday I will be selling these six ornaments for $10 a piece at our fundraising craft fair/garage sale.
I will also be selling these completed pieces, which you have seen with the stitching finished, but not completely done.

And last but by no means least, I have this beautiful ornament made by Lisa for the survivor volunteers:

Thanks so much for all of your help! We will be selling tickets for the quilt drawing this weekend at the craft fair also. I am hoping to raise the last $236 to bring the Waco Relay money raised to $1000 by itself from these projects. That will be about a total of $1700 so far for all three Relays together!
AMAZING!
So keep stitching and as we are bringing the 2010 Relay For Life to a close, think about whether we want to continue this project. I am thinking we could do individual ornaments that we sell individually rather than doing a drawing next year. You tell me what you want to do.
I will pop back in after the sale and let you know where we stand at that point!

Monday, September 6, 2010

The last

I have finished stitching my last piece for the 2010 Relay For Life. I still have several ornaments from friends I have to finish off into ornaments and I have to put the trim around this one, but I am through for now.
Here is a pic of it. It is the same "C is for Cure" freebie I did before but in different colors.


My focus now will be the Sept. 18th Craft Fair/Garage Sale that I will sell the ornaments and finished pieces at and also sell tickets for the last quilt. Then on Oct. 16th is the RELAY FOR LIFE! That will be my last opportunity to sell tickets and then we will draw the winner that night. I am $341 away from my goal of $1000 for this Relay alone. We are well over that amount for the other 2 Relays held earlier this year. I expect we come in around $2000 total this year for RFL which is absolutely amazing.
So if you have anything out there you want to donate for this year's RFL please send it my way. And get ready for 2011. We are going to blow it out of the water next year!
I will pop back in with more updates!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Childhood Cancer Month

Do you ever wonder why we are doing this project? I have to say that yes, at times, I have wondered why. Keeping up with everything, selling tickets, going to the Relays, sometimes it is overwhelming.
46 children will be diagnosed with cancer today. 9 of those children will die from it. Of the 37 who do survive, 25 of them will suffer from long-term or late onset side effects... things such as secondary cancers due to chemo treatment, fertility loss, memory loss, etc. Yes, they're sobering statistics. Yes, it's hard to read. But yes, it's reality. It's our reality. September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.
Then I remember. DUH! We are making a difference. We are helping save lives with our talents. Relay For Life is the biggest fundraiser for American Cancer Society. So big that the theme "Relay isn't all we do, but all we do depends on Relay" has been the mantra this year.
So keep those needles flying. We are MAKING A DIFFERENCE!
And if you have a healthy child, hug them and say a prayer for those fighting the battle. Hugs to all of you!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A new ornament and a finsh



I have finished off the C is for Cure. I put a cute little yellow polka dot bow in the corner of the finished piece and on the back I have the cutest fabric that has Hope written all over it. I attached a miniature photo frame on the back so whoever purchases the piece can put a picture of a loved one in it. Hopefully it will bring in some money for ACS.
I received several of the blackwork pieces by my friends in MD. They requested I finish them into ornaments or smalls.
Here is one of them that I finished as an ornament (the hanger hasn't been put on it yet, though). It was made by Janice B. from Baltimore, MD. She is a breast cancer survivor! HOORAY FOR SURVIVORS!

Hopefully I will have more to show in a few days.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Another ornament from a friend


Karen stitched this beautiful ornament for the Reach For A Cure volunteers. I really appreciate it!
I have also received many other stitched pieces that need to be made into ornaments that we are going to sell the night of Relay For Life. I have ordered some fabric (it is that same Hope fabric that Jeanine used in my previous post) that I am going to finish them with.
I also stitched up the C is for Cure freebie by Lizzie Kate and Just Cross stitch magazine I talked about in my last post.

I used Strawberry Milkshake lugana by Silkweavers and changed the color of the threads. I think it is really cute!
Our last Relay in 2010 is on Oct. 16th. We will draw for the winner of the quilt at that time. Then take a deep breath and get ready for 2011!
Thanks again for everything. We really are in this together!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

New pattern

Just Cross Stitch Magazine, Sept./Oct. issue has a new pattern from Lizzie Kate, C is for Cure. AND they have posted the freebie on their website: Just Cross Stitch
While I very much encourage you to purchase the whole issue because it has some really cute stuff in it, you can jump over in the meanwhile and print off this freebie!
I am off to stitch!
P.S. I have been asked if we will be doing another round of ornaments. The answer is YES! They won't be due until at least March for the next year's Relays (I think I am doing 2). The request from Relayers is that they want to be able to purchase individual ornaments rather than do a drawing for a group of them. So I am responding to their request for next year.
We are still selling tickets for the drawing for the last quilt for the Waco Relay For Life. That happens Oct. 16.
We will catch our breath, enjoy the holidays and start another year!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Ornaments for breast cancer survivors

I reached out to you asking for help making some ornaments for our volunteers who are breast cancer survivors and work on our Reach For Recovery fund raising luncheon.
And you responded! Last week and this week I have really enjoyed checking my mailbox.
I received this beautiful ornament from Meari


The back is so pretty and has a little charm that says "I made this for you".
And then yesterday I received this trio of ornaments from my friend Jeanine. They are so pretty, front and back.


The back of one of them has some really cute fabric that says "hope". I don't know where she got this fabric from, but it is just so cha-cha!

She also included 2 handmade bags. These bags are about 8x8 and have a nice little pocket inside. VERY, VERY NICE! I am going to sell these and raise even more money for Relay For Life!

I have had e-mails from a couple of others that they will be sending ornaments soon. The luncheon is in September so we are good on time.
Thank you is not enough for what all of you have done for this cause. We do make a difference with each stitch we take.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

As always

As always, you stitchers have come through for me. I have secured enough stitchers to make ornaments for the Reach for Recovery Luncheon volunteers. I may even have 1 or 2 more than I needed, but you never know when an ornament will come in handy!
It amazes me what kind of response I get when I put out a need plea. But it shouldn't surprise me.
Because throughout these projects I have found there are really good folks out there that want to use their talents to help others. Esp. in these economic times, I think we have all had to look at ourselves and at others in a different prospective. Many have been profoundly affected by loss of jobs, lower income and illnesses.
But yet we reach beyond our need to the needs of others. And many times that fills our heart with gladness, a gladness that we wouldn't have merely helping ourselves.
We have been blessed by using our talents to make a difference in our community. Thank you for being such a blessing to me.
And I have another request (if I may humbly submit another request). Many local blood banks are having a tough time this summer. A great deal of the blood supply is given by high school and college students. When they are out of school for the summer, the blood supply typically drops. This summer has been more dramatic nationwide.
So if you can give, please do so. If you can't but know someone who can, please encourage them to give. Remind them (and yourselves) to drink plenty of fluids, esp. water before giving and to eat a good meal high in iron at least 4 hours before they donate. Giving the gift of life is something so very important.
Thank you for allowing me to request this of you!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Some pics of the Gatesville Relay For Life

I may not have been able to attend the Gatesville Relay For Life, but that doesn't mean my camera couldn't be there. Here are some photos of the Relay. Check out the pics of our Carter BloodCare Stitching For A Cure table. You can see one of the quilts and the pillows that people purchased chance tickets for!


And here is a picture of all the survivors that were out that night. And a picture of JoLeen and a committee member (Jo's in the purple shirt). JoLeen is a Hero of Hope and a breast cancer survivor. One of the pink squares on the quilt was stitched for her!


Also, don't forget to check my previous post for a new way to help! Now onto the Waco Relay For Life!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

New opportunity to help

I have been requested by the survivors chairperson for the Waco Relay For Life to stitch 6 ornaments to be given to breast cancer survivors who are volunteering for our Reach to Recovery Fundraising Luncheon in October.
I need the ornaments in my hand by September 1 if possible. We have selected the blackwork pattern on the right side of my blog.
The thread will be pink DMC and can be stitched on either 28 count lugana or 14 count aida in a white or off white color. I would be happy to provide you with the fabric if you decide to do it. There are a few beads on the design.
PLEASE NOTE: IF YOU DO NOT FEEL COMFORTABLE FINISHING IT INTO AN ORNAMENT, PLEASE LET ME KNOW. I can do the finishing for you but I have specific margin requests around the stitching.
Please email me at stitchingforacure@yahoo.com if you have questions or would like to stitch an ornament.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Last chance to help Gatesville Relay For Life

Tonight I sit at home, on medical restriction, unable to attend Gatesville Relay For Life. I have come to terms with the fact that now is the time to take care of me.
But I can still do one last ditch effort to raise funds. From tonight through next Friday night, if you would like to donate to Relay For Life please go to:
Gatesville Relay For Life and click on the donate button. That will take you to my fundraising site for Relay.
You all have done so much for American Cancer Society and for me and the patients. I understand if you cannot do this and please do not feel obligated to do so. I am simply reaching out in the ways I know how to help.
Remember, cancer doesn't sleep and the Relayers will be walking all night in the Texas heat. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers! Thanks.
Donna

Monday, June 21, 2010

A sad end

For those of you who don't know, a few weeks ago I thought I was having a heart attack and had to be taken to the hospital by ambulance. It wasn't a heart attack thank God!
But I have had a couple of episodes of extremely high blood pressure (208/120) that had a sudden onset. Still have some chest discomfort.
The doctor has me on a blood pressure medicine and I have had a stress test and a non-stress x-ray. A visit to the cardiologist today told me that the stress test was clear except for an area he couldn't really see due to the shadow of my breast. At this time he is going to watch me and do a few more tests. Any more chest pain and we are headed for an angiogram, which is dangerous for me due to a clotting disorder I have.
But here is the real kicker. I have to slow down. And I cannot go to the Gatesville, TX Relay For Life this weekend. It breaks my heart.
My family and friends have been asking me not to go due to the extreme heat here in Texas and I was trying hard to listen to their advice. But when the Cardiologist said no go, I had to take his advice (which BTW my DH says he really likes this doctor because he made my husband's advice right!).
And I have to slow down on how active I am with the Waco RFL. I am the sponsorship chairperson and I am going to have to meet with the chairs for Relay and see what we can do to make this work.
But thanks to my co-worker, Terry and his beautiful wife, we will carry on. They are going to be out at Relay and will sell tickets for the quilt. Before they leave a name will be drawn and if the winner is there, they will receive the quilt that night and a picture will be taken.
But I won't be there. Life is not fair, but no one said it would be. And I need to take care of me in order to keep doing these things to make a difference in cancer patients lives.
So please think of me and say a prayer. And spend some time Friday night thinking of the wonderful souls that will be walking through the night because cancer doesn't sleep.
Onward we go...

Friday, May 28, 2010

We have topped $1000!

Today we held a bake sale/chance ticket sale at work for Relay For Life. We made $256, much of it was donations and chance ticket sales.
What is significant about today is that it put the grand total we have raised so far for the combination of the three Relays For Life at

$1147.00

WOW! Can you believe this? And we still have two of the Relays to go. We will be selling chance tickets for the Gatesville Relay up to and including June 25th, the night of the Relay.
Waco's Relay isn't until October and we will be selling tickets up to and including that date.
So there is lots more time to raise lots more money! I really think we will see $2000!
Thanks to all !

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Gatesville News Article

I apologize for the grainy picture of this article. It was in last Wednesday's Gatesville Messenger, which is a small local newspaper for Gatesville, TX. I thought you might like to see it. They do not have the article online and so I scanned this:

I hope you can read it. The article itself was wonderful!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

My time on Facebook isn't a total waste of time

I have to admit it. I am spending waaaayyyy too much time on Facebook. But I find all kinds of neat stuff out there.
One of the things I found is this great blog about this great guy named Terry. He is going on a motorcycle run around the country to promote cancer awareness.
You see, Terry is a SURVIVOR!
Check out this blog for more info. Terry's big adventure
I wish him luck in his travels!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Colon cancer awareness fabric

One of the things I am most proud of in relation to this blog is that it serves as a place that people can look for answers to different questions, particularly stitchers looking for cancer awareness patterns.
I hope to help educate and serve as a listening ear to those "going through" it.
Such is the case with a request I received.
A crafter that reads my blog is looking for some fleece fabric with dark blue colon cancer ribbons on it. She wants to make a blanket for her mother. We have both been searching the internet, but have found none. Now I know it is out there because there are ready made items with it on them.
Have any of you seen fabric such as this? If so, please let me know as soon as possible. Thanks.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Killeen Relay is a SUCCESS!

Last night was the Killeen, TX Relay For Life! It was the first Relay of 2010 that I am participating in. It was a huge success!
We had 139 teams, 1518 participants and raised $176, 111!
I left my camera at home and didn't realize it until I was almost to Killeen, so unfortunately I have no photos to show you.
The Killeen quilt brought in $300! Amazing! And I believe this will be the lowest amount brought in on the 3 quilts. The Waco one is already at $435 and we still have until October to raise money for that! That doesn't include the $50 we made off of the photo cube, which brings the total to $485 raised for Waco! And then there is Gatesville which has already brought in $72 off of it's quilt and I just started selling tickets for that!
That means we have raised $857 so far! This is wonderful!
Now let me tell you some highlights from last night. First off it didn't rain. Which was a miracle from God because it was definitely forecasted for rain.
And the 1518 participants? That was just actual team members. It didn't include all the visitors who weren't on a team. At 7:00pm when the kickoff and survivor walk was occurring, there were a line of cars in the parking lot looking for parking spaces. You could see the line went on FOREVER!
And the survivor walk! What can I say? I walked the first lap as a 23 year survivor. Slowly, but I made it. The walking I have been doing helped prepare me for this. I was huffing and puffing but I made it.
And just as I got back to my seat, along came a survivor with a friend walking the track. She was walking slowly with a walker. It took her a LONG time to get around the track. But let me tell you she put us all to shame. She did it with STYLE! She would stop every once and awhile and do a little dance, she sang along with the music and she was so cute I just wanted to run to the track and hug her.
This Relay's survivor's lap was different. They had the survivors line up on the track. Just behind them, facing the opposite way, was the caregivers. When the survivors got around the track they were met by the caregivers, who then joined them on the next lap.
The first 3 survivors leading the lap were small children. I still tear up when I think about how sweet they looked.
Speaking of tears, there were lots of them. But there were also lots of smiles! Lots of "way to gos" and "you're doing great!".
Their luminary ceremony isn't held until around midnight. After being at the track from 3:30 until 9:30 I had to call it a night. A migraine sent me home and since I had to drive an hour in the dark, I decided to not let it get any worse before I headed home.
But it was so much fun! They had a national RFL photographer out there and he took a picture of our campsite, which was made up of my new double lawn chair with umbrella set, the quilt hanging from the umbrella and a table with our sign on it.
Maybe in the new RFL promos, you will see me!
If you have never been to a Relay For Life, I encourage you to find one in your area and GO! It is fun and will inspire you!
Now onto June 26 and the Gatesville Relay!
And speaking of the Gatesville Relay, the quilt is going to be featured in tomorrow's Gatesville Messenger. Be sure to check back here for the link!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Hope for a cure --UPDATED 04/26

Today I finished a small project that I am going to sell chance tickets for tomorrow night at the Relay For Life, Waco team captain meeting.
It is a photo cube that I stained myself and then I stitched a little piece on purple 28 count Lugana with spring colors. It says HOPE in big letters, and then For a cure in backstitching.
I think it is quite cute. I framed the stitch piece with spring colored varigated rick rack and attached it to the top of the photo cube. I think it is perfect for a Mother's Day gift!
Here is a pic of it:

I am going to sell the tickets for $1 a piece or 6 for $5. Hopefully I will make $25 off of it! More money for Relay!
Hope you all have a fantabulous week!
UPDATE! WE MADE $50 OFF OF THE CHANCES FOR THIS LITTLE JEWEL! AMAZING!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Stories of hope & survival

Today I went to Killeen for the Relay For Life garage sale. We had a table there to sell chances for the quilt, as well as recruit for our blood drive we were having.
First of all it poured. I mean, the heavens opened up and dropped an ocean on us. And the person at the garage sale didn't mark off spots for our blood mobile which meant we were at the back of the parking lot.
But that didn't stop people from coming to donate. Our numbers were lower than what we would have liked, but people responded to our need.
We made $45 on the quilt which was good given that this was a garage sale crowd and not a craft fair crowd. $30 of that was simply a donation from two folks.
I don't know what it is about me that people feel comfortable "opening up" to me, but I do consider it a blessing. Today was no different.
At the start of my day, a mother and daughter came by, looked at the quilt and when I told them about it, both started to cry. I asked if one of them was a survivor and the daughter said "it is too fresh" and walked away. So I looked at the mom, told her I was a 23 year survivor and whatever it was, she would get through it. She cried, and then told me she was a 5 year survivor--until yesterday. They found another cancer spot in a different part of her body. We talked briefly, I tried to encourage her and told her I would think of her as I walked in Relay in 2 weeks.
A little time passed and an older gentleman came and looked at the quilt. He told me he had been diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma and prostate cancer a few years ago. Basically, they told him there wasn't much hope, but that he should go to the VA since he was a veteran. He did and found out that the lymphoma was probably caused by agent orange during the Vietnam war. They told him they could help him and he has been cancer free for 10 years. When the doctor sees him, he calls him "his walking miracle". I shook his hand and told him I was proud to meet a miracle. About 20 minutes later, he came back, laid $20 on the table and told me to donate it to ACS to help others.
Just before I left, another couple came by and asked about the quilt. We talked and their son has lymphoma is is undergoing treatment. We talked for awhile, cried for awhile, and then smiled for awhile, assured the treatment was going to work. They left a $10 donation.
You know, I am truly blessed. God gave me the ability to talk with folks and to listen with folks and to try to understand what they are going through. I pray today I helped someone along the way on their journey. I know they helped me.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Songs of Love

Hey guys! I just heard about this great site that helps children and teens going through treatments for cancer.
When I heard about it on CBS Morning Show I thought "wow! Someone is using their talents like we use ours to help cancer patients". It was amazing.
What these people do is to bring musicians together to record a song for a specific patient. The song is about that person, their hobbies, likes, dislikes, personalities, etc. Then they send the song to the patient to enjoy. It can help them get through nasty stuff like MRI's and getting stuck over and over again. Mostly they just know that someone cared enough about them, someone that didn't know them personally cared enough to do something just for THEM!
They have a website. It is called Songs of Love and the website is http://www.songsoflove.org
and is wonderful to read about what they do. And they need donations, so if you feel moved, do something to help!
Wow! Stitching for a cure, songs of love, what next?

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Some recognition!

Tonight I attended the Gatesville, TX Relay For Life team captain meeting. It was absolutely amazing! I love those folks there.
We sold $32 in "opportunity" (no raffle here, legal eagles) tickets for the quilt and for pillows. That means just on the Gatesville quilt we have sold $72 in "opportunity" tickets. That is just Gatesville. I have the Killeen one and the Waco one we have sold tickets for. And we are just beginning.
The best part is their hometown newspaper is doing an article on the quilts and on the wonderful part each of you have played in this fundraiser for such a great cause!
I have a craft fair on April 17 that I will be selling tickets at as well as another one on May 1st. So we have lots of time to raise money for Killeen/Gatesville and we have all the way until October for the Waco Relay!
I will post the article or the link to the article here when it comes out! Great job everyone!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The new quilt is in!

I received the new quilt for the Waco Relay For Life today. I start selling raffle tickets for it at our Relay Kick-Off on Monday!
These are lousy pictures, but here is the front and back of the quilt. The editor on my Photosnap is not working correctly now.


Thanks again to all the stitchers who worked on this project and esp. to our quilter, Halina who did the quilting on both!
I will keep you updated on how much we raise with these quilts!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Why do you Relay?

Or rather "why are you so involved this year in Relay? Last year and in the years past, all you did was go to the track the night of Relay" That was the question I was asked this afternoon by someone of me. I had to pick my chin up off the floor and just remind them that we are being a part of our community by participating in three Relay For Life walks this year. A part of the communities we serve.
And I realized that this person probably has no real idea of the time and effort I put into fundraising and volunteering for Relay For Life. And it is not just the night of Relay but for months before.
But on the way home, I thought about why I Relay. I Relay because most of the blood products we collect to help save lives are used by cancer patients.
I Relay because today a little girl named Layla Grace went to heaven because of neuroblastoma. And today, another child I don't know started treatment for cancer that might save them.
I Relay that we might find a cure for cancer in my lifetime. A CURE! Not another treatment, but an actual cure.
I Relay because I want to make sure that when a patient hears those words "you have cancer" and they don't know what to do, American Cancer Society will have the funds to be there to answer their questions and to help them.
I Relay because even though "bald is beautiful" most women don't feel that way and I want to make sure that the Look Good, Feel Better program is available to those folks.
I Relay because treatment clinics are not always in your backyard and the Ride to Recovery can help you get there. Gas is expensive and Relay helps with this.
I Relay because I can't do anything else but Relay. It is part of my soul, part of my heart and a big part of who I am.
Thank you for all your help in making these Relays successful. Because you are a big part of WHY I RELAY FOR LIFE!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Ok, you asked for it!

You asked for more survivor stories and more education in this blog and I am going to do my best to give it to you. So here goes!
March is Colon Cancer Awareness Month. Here is a post from American Cancer Society:

American Cancer Society - High Plains Division, Inc. Getting tested for colon cancer can save your life. Colon cancer is one of only two cancers that can actually be prevented through screening.If you are 50 or older, talk to your doctor about getting tested, even if you have no symptoms. If you have a family history of colon cancer or polyps, you may need to get tested ...earlier than age 50. Colon cancer is highly treatable if found in its early stages.Visit cancer.org/colon for more information.

So ok. Are you 50? Do you have a family history of colon cancer? If so, go get tested NOW!!! Promise me you will do this because I want you to be around for a long, long time!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

What now?

Well, the last square of the last quilt is in. And the quilt is off to the quilter's (thanks Halina!).
So what now? I mean I still have three Relays to go to and I still have to sell raffle tickets for the quilts, the pillows and some ornies that were left over. But that is all stuff I do at the meetings and such.
What do I do about this blog? We won't be starting anymore projects until at least September or October for next year and even then I don't have a clue what those projects will be.
I will of course, keep you updated with pics of the quilt when it is finished and on how much money we have raised.
I have missed stitching stuff just for fun. So I guess that is what I will focus my stitching on. And I have a few charity quilt squares I am working on.
But you tell me. What do you get from this blog? Do you want more educational posts on different forms of cancer and what American Cancer Society does? Do you want more stories of the patients I know, both those that are survivors and those who aren't?
How can I make this blog continue until our next project? I really need your input on what to do. You have made all of these projects a huge success. Thank you to all of you, whether you have stitched something or simply followed along with our progress. You will always have a piece of my heart.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Calling all quilt blocks

We have the date for the Waco Relay kick-off. It is March 22nd. I would like to have the quilt ready to go by then so we can start selling tickets. If you have quilt blocks at this time, please let me know how you are doing on them. Just shoot me a short e-mail.
If I can get it to Halina by Mar. 1, we might be ok to get it back by March 22. I just need to check with her.
I have shown off the Killeen quilt everywhere and they are loving it. I have sold a few tickets, but have the first big Killeen team captain meeting on Feb. 25th. So I plan on selling a TON of tickets there!
Thanks for all your help. In addition to the 3 Relays I am actually participating as team captain in, there are a couple of smaller Relays I will be attending as a survivor. So we will be busy, busy, busy until June. Then it all kind of slows down until around Sept. for the Waco Relay in October. You don't want to do a Relay in Texas in the summer, trust me!
Thank you all for your help!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

We have some money!

I sold my first 5 raffle tickets for the quilt. $20 for 5 of them! We are on the way!
Woo hoo!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Ladies and gentleman we have a quilt!

First let me apologize for the lousy pictures. I tried to drape my board that I usually use, but it wasn't big enough. Since my comforter on my bed is all floral, I took it off and put it on there. Still not great.
But let me tell you this quilt is absolutely beautiful! I take it to my first event tomorrow night, a speaking engagement at a survivors group. Then on to a kick off for a local Relay I don't have a team at, but still want to be a part of it.
Tickets for this raffle are $5 a piece, 5 for $20. If you are interested, go to the Killeen Relay link on the right side of my blog. Make a donation of $5 or more and shoot me an e-mail. I will fill out the form and include you in the drawing.
If you had a part in making this quilt, stand up and take a bow!
With no further ado, here is the quilt:

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Update on Cooper

I just read Cooper's dad's blog. Cooper did well through surgery and the doctor was cautiously optimistic that he got all the tumor out! I will be keeping up with Cooper and let you all know how he is doing!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Prayers for Cooper

This is from a local boy in our area named Cooper. I have verified all is true. Please keep him in your thoughts and prayers on Feb. 5th. He has late stage Neuroblastoma. He needs a marrow transplant among other things to heal him. It isn't pretty. This is why we stitch for a cure.
Here is an excerpt from his dad's blog:
Its Time For Surgery
The time has come for Coopers tumor to be surgically removed. We set up his appointment for Feb 5 2010. There will be an incision in the left side of his chest, stretching from the front of his chest to his back, it will be in the middle of his ribs. I got a chance to see the actual tumor from the CT scans, its actually about the size of a baseball, between his heart and lungs, attached to his spin. Directly after the tumor is removed, Cooper will stay in the hospital for 3-5 days for healing, then start his 6th round of chemo. Since his bone marrow hasnt cleared from the cancer cells, we have to find a donor for the stem cells. This alone poses danger just like anything else he has been going through. During the transfusion, Cooper can develop Graph Verse Host Disease (GVHD), because of this treat Cooper will spend 3 Months in San Antonio. Due to the complications we are having with his progress, the San Antonio trip has not been set in stone yet.

I am sorry I haven't updated anyone for a while, life has been rough and I dont like to give people discouraging news. I had a chat with one of the doctors overseeing Coopers progress, he mentioned to me that since his bone marrow hasn't cleared, we have to find a donor. In finding a donor, Coopers chances of beating this decrease by 50%. His original odds where about 40%, with the donor....it is about 20%. The logic behind that was kind of a mystery to me as well. The reason it decreases is we have to find someone else's DNA, thus not being Coopers. Cooper using his own DNA is the most likely and promising path. We still have high hopes that Cooper will come out of this fight stronger than he ever was. It is had to see him turn from that sweet little boy we all came to know and love to a kid who has not the energy to do much. He is so strong. He has been through more medical procedures then most of you reading this post. He has probably been poked with more needles as well. How can someone so young withstand so much pain...

For everyone reading this, please pray for him tonight, pray for his surgery and the progress of his treatment.

~His Loving Father

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I can hardly wait!

Halina sent me the quilt layout with all the blocks on top of the sashing fabric. It looks absolutely beautiful! I can just imagine it finished, with the pretty pink printed fabric on the back with all the wonderful sayings!
Do you want a peek at it? Really, want a peek? Ok here it is!


Monday, January 25, 2010

Fabric for quilt #2 has arrived


I am so excited! The fabric for the back of quilt #2 arrived today. It is even prettier than the first piece of fabric.
I had originally ordered this fabric but they were out of it. So I went with the other fabric and while it is fantastic, this is more what I thought about using. It is purple, which is the color of Relay. It has purple ribbons on it and swirls of purple with wording on it such as "be generous", "help others", "join the fight-care about a cure", "overcome", "live", "love", "pray for a cure" and "help with hope". These are all words that describe what we are doing with this quilt and with this project. I just have one more square to have stitched and that is a yellow square for bladder cancer.
It is amazing. Soon we are going to have all the squares in and can send it off to be quilted also.
Then what???? We will have completed all our projects for all three Relays! I have several pillows we are going to raffle off for the 3rd Relay and several ornaments we will do silent auctions for at the team captains meetings.
I know I will be busy going to team captains meetings, committee meetings and actual Relays, along with selling raffle tickets for everything.
But it is hard to think that our project is finished for now. We Relay in April, June and October and then start again. So keep checking back here for new projects. We will get started again probably in mid-summer.
Any thoughts on what to do next? I want to see how the quilts do and we may do it again next year. This has been an easy to manage project, unlike the Christmas ornament project. But of course that project brought in over $1100. Wonder what these quilts will bring in?
Thank you to all who have participated. If you are interested in doing the yellow square please e-mail me. Check back here frequently for pictures of the finished quilt!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Relay For Life University

Yesterday I had the privilege of attending Relay For Life University in Austin. It is designed to give committee chairs and co-chairs the tools they need to do their jobs in helping make Relay a success. It is also a very large pep rally!
The music was loud, the Relayers were louder, the speakers were amazing and the decorations were great. We had a theme of "More Birthdays" so all the tables were decorated for birthday celebrations. And since you know how I feel about birthdays (mine is a National Holiday) it was perfect for me!
Here are pictures of my Relay committee chairs. Not everyone was there, but we did have a great turnout. We weren't as loud as Killeen (no one could be as loud as Killeen!) but we did a great job.




You know I am participating in 3 Relays this year: Killeen, Gatesville & Waco. So seeing everyone there at one time was fun. I have my work cut out for me. I am going to be on the Sponsorship Committee for Waco this year and also be the team captain for our Stitching For a Cure team. I am just doing the team captain thing at Killeen & Gatesville but it will keep me busy.
During the University, there was a time for caregivers to be recognized as well as survivors. We also remembered those lost. Sweet MaKenzie was mentioned and I don't think there was a dry eye at our table. I wonder if I will ever get through a Relay event without crying. Probably not.
I came away with a new enthusiasm for Relay. I am ready. More than ready. I also have an announcement to make on Feb. 4th, so check back here then.
Thank you for all your help. Everyone can hardly wait to see the first quilt!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Off to the quilter they do go!

I received 4 squares in the past few days. So we are now ready to go off to the quilter tomorrow! Woo hoo!
I received this square from Marian. Blue is the color of colorectal cancer. She did a lovely job on it!

I received two lavender squares from Carolyn. Lavender is the color for general cancer awareness.

And I received this pink square from Cathy. Again, another lovely square!
This is why Cathy said she stitched this square:
"My mother-in-law, sister-in-law, father-in-law and grandfather have all battled various forms of cancer. I also have several friends and coworkers who have also.
I chose to stitch the breast cancer square for my sister-in-law (Dana) and a lady who's very active in our church and the chairperson of the board I'm on (Pat). Both are currently "cancer free". Besides 603 is my favorite DMC color.
Thanks for allowing me to help with this project.
Cathy"

So with that, this quilt can be "put to bed". I am sending it off to the quilter tomorrow.
We are still working on our other quilt. I am in need of a green, yellow, lavender & blue square, so if you haven't stitched yet or you want to stitch another, more fabric is on it's way! Just shoot me an e-mail at my SFAC Yahoo e-mail and let me know what you want!
Thanks to all! Keep checking back for pics of the quilt!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Another quilt block from a friend!


This quilt block was stitched by Sandra in honor of her cousin Marshall, who just completed his second round of chemo for leukemia!
Woo hoo! Thank you Sandra!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A new update



I received two purple squares from my new friends, Sheila and Barbara.
Sheila stitched the square in memory of her mother in law, Mary. She survived diabetes, heart attacks and even colon cancer, but in the end pancreatic cancer took her life.
Barbara stitched her square in HONOR of her husband who is an 11 1/2 year SURVIVOR of pancreatic cancer! Woo Hoo!

This is another centerpiece for our quilts (remember, we are doing two!). Janet did beautiful stitching on this piece.

This is the backing fabric for our quilt. I had some purple ribbon fabric all picked out, but when I went to order it, they were sold out so I took a chance on this fabric. All I can say is WOW! It is perfect! In fact I am going to use this on the back of the second quilt also. It has sayings like "Friends forever", "celebrate", "dream", "inspire" "beautiful, wonderful, lovely", "amazing" and "friends are fabulous".
The colors are right on with the thread colors I chose for the squares.
I have several people who are sending in their squares and I should have them this week. So by next week I should be able to send Quilt #1 to the quilter. Fantabulous!

Very disappointed

You know I live in a beautiful world. One where kind people send ornaments and quilt blocks to help cancer patients they don't know. One where kind people I don't know make me a beautiful quilt.
So in this beautiful world, I cannot believe that someone would send out a prayer request for a cancer patient that didn't exist. Just for the heck of it. Make people like me cry over someone that doesn't exist. Make me pray for someone that doesn't exist.
In my past post (I left it up just so you can see how evil people can be), I asked for your prayers for someone. The friend that sent it to me believed it was real. I believed it was real.
But the hoax is on the original sender. Because you see, my God knew that. And he knew my heart and all of your hearts. And he just passed that prayer on to a real patient. One that needed true prayers.
Shame, shame on the original sender. I will pray for your heart, because that is true evil that lurks there.

Monday, January 11, 2010

We need prayers!

I received this from a friend and I am forwarding it as requested.


Prayer request for Gary and Cindy Hogman by way of Faith Presbyterian
Church. Gary is serving in Iraq while his young wife is fighting cancer
here.
See his Request below.

Bobby S. Briggs, MSgt, USAF
823 ESFS/SFOC
Flight Sergeant
BAGHDAD AB, IRAQ

My name is Gary Hogman.. Some of you receiving this know me, some
do not. My wife, Cindy, is 32 years old and has just been
diagnosed with stage 4 Cervical cancer. Her chances for survival
are very slim. She was pregnant with our second child and had
miscarried recently at 3 Months; and now we know why. This is a
request for you to forward this e-mail to everyone you know
asking for prayer. The more people that pray for her to be
healed, the better. Pray and forward. It only takes a second to
hit 'forward.' Please do it and don't delete this. Your prayer
can, and perhaps will, save her life.. Please pray and ask
everyone you know to pray for the HEALING of CINDY HOGMAN And
the removal of all cancer from her body, so she may enjoy all
that life has to offer, and to continue to be the wonderful
mother to our 5-year-old son Michael. The power of Prayer is
unsurpassed. I want the whole world to have her in their prayers
The next few weeks. God will hear our cry. Please do not be offended by
my plea. This is only a request for your help. Thank you from the bottom
of my heart for reading this and helping with our request for healing! No
words can express the power we have when we each do a little to come
together.

Regards, Cindy's husband -
Gary

Thank you, and please send it to the far reaches of our world!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

More quilt blocks & memories


I received this yellow quilt square from Vicki today. It doesn't show up very well in my picture, but it is really pretty.
Yellow is the ribbon color for bladder cancer. She stitched the square in honor of her grandfather, who died much too early from bladder cancer.

I stitched this quilt block in honor of my friend Carolyn. Blue is the color for colon cancer.
Carolyn was a good friend. She passed away 10 years ago this year at the age of 57 from colon cancer.
I angry with her. That anger has subsided over the years, but is still there. Why? Because Carolyn had EVERY sign that she had colon cancer and did nothing about it. Her mother had colon cancer and it ran all through her family. For over a week she was in severe pain, with severe colon symptoms and did nothing. By the time she went to the doctor all they could do was take most of her colon out and do a colostomy. It had spread to her liver.
Carolyn lived several years more, but her life was limited. Limited in what that vivacious woman could do.
A colonoscopy done a few years before could have prevented it. Her doctor had recommended it. Her family had encouraged her to do it. But she didn't have one because of the "embarrassment".
I miss my friend. Don't let any of your friends miss you too soon. Check with your doctor and see if he recommends a colonoscopy. It could save your life.

Monday, January 4, 2010

What cancer cannot do


As most of you know, we are doing 2 quilts this year for 2 different Relays. I have two stitchers doing the centerpiece of the two quilts.
Today I received the first one from Karen. Trust me when I tell you my picture does not do this piece justice. It is quite beautiful and will be a wonderful centerpiece to the quilt.
I have heard from some stitchers who are sending in their squares in the next few days. After those come in, I will just need to receive one more and we can send the first quilt to the quilter.
Woo hoo! I ordered the backing fabric today.
If you are interested in doing a square, please e-mail me and I can let you know what colors are available.
Thanks for all of your help!

Friday, January 1, 2010

January!


Every month I am going to focus on a new reminder for all of you! I found this on the Facebook site, National Cervical Cancer Coalition and HPV Cancer Coalition.
Ok, so ladies what are we going to do? HINT: Involves stirrups and opened front paper robes!
I want all of you around to follow me on this wonderful journey, so make those yearly exam appointments and KEEP THEM!