Saturday, April 30, 2011

Z~ Zip

This is the story of Zip. When I was a little girl my uncle Chicky owned a toy store. How cool is that? My parents took us to his store and he said "pick anything you want in the store"! I remember looking up and all around at the toys, bikes, everything! But then, I found Zip! Yup, out of the whole toy store I chose this stuffed animal with his hat, yellow shirt ( with his name on it), his red overalls, plastic white shoes and an arm that squeaked when you squeezed it. My Zip also held a banana.

Zip became my best friend. He went everywhere with me, bike rides, sledding, camping, climbing trees, everywhere!

A few years ago, my husband and I walked into Cracker Barrel and there he was, ZIP, sitting on a shelf! I was so excited, I told my husband "you have to go buy him for me"! I hadn't seen Zip since I was a little kid. I now have another Zip. He is not the true, authentic Zip of the 60's but it is fun to have a piece of my childhood and wonderful memories with my Zip :)

As this challenge has now come to an end, I have learned so much, made new blogger friends and created new memories! Thanks for allowing me to be a part of the challenge, sharing your blogs and stopping by mine with your encouraging words. I have signed up to for a writers workshop once a month and look forward to learning more and meeting up with all of you again at next years A~Z Challenge!

Friday, April 29, 2011

y~ Years ahead

This week I have been reminded once again of how God has answered our prayers over these very difficult years. Thirteen years with cancer and the last four with it being considered "non-curable".
So, what does that mean for someone like me and my future years? How do I plan? How do I dream? What do I pray for? How do I remain hopeful?

I plan to be here as long as God chooses for me to be. I dream about short term goals and long term goals. It has taken me quite some time to have any comfort level at all about thinking into the future. I pray that God will continue to show me what His plans are for me, and my Hope is in Him,Yahweh.

He has once again answered our prayers and brought this little boy into  my life. My first grandchild, who is right now growing big and strong in his mama's belly. Before I knew he was a boy, I dreamed about swimming with him. There were snakes in the canal where we swimming  ( I am a swim instructor, so this job has already been assigned to me, yeah! :). I,in the dream was scared but he was brave and strong!

So, how do I think about the years to come? With hope, with faith and with joy as I consider  how much more there is to do and how much more God wants me to do. I think about being a grandparent and all the wonderful and exciting things to do and teach to this brave and strong little boy!
My husband and I have prayed all these years to be grand-parents and Great grandparents. I pray that this is just the start of many years with all of my future grandchildren.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

X~ Xiaobo, Liu Awarded the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize

Liu Xiaobo (pronunciation: [ljǒʊ̯ ɕjɑ̀ʊ̯pɔ́]; born 28 December 1955) is a Chinese literary critic, writer, professor, and human rights activist who called for political reforms and the end of communist one-party rule in the People's Republic of China (PRC).[1] He is currently incarcerated as a political prisoner in the PRC.
Mr. Liu has served from 2003 to 2007 as President of the Independent Chinese PEN Center, an organization funded by the National Endowment for Democracy,[2] an organization almost entirely funded by the US Congress. He was also the President of NED-funded MinZhuZhongGuo ("Democratic China") Magazine since the mid-1990s. On 8 December 2008, Liu was detained in response to his participation with the Charter 08 manifesto. He was formally arrested on 23 June 2009, on suspicion of "inciting subversion of state power."[3][4] He was tried on the same charges on 23 December 2009,[5] and sentenced to eleven years' imprisonment and two years' deprivation of political rights on 25 December 2009.[6]
During his 4th prison term, he was awarded the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize, for "his long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights in China."[7][8][9][10] He is the first Chinese citizen to be awarded a Nobel Prize of any kind while residing in China.[11] He is the fourth person to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize while in prison or detention, after Germany's Carl von Ossietzky (1935), the Soviet Union's Andrei Sakharov (1975), and Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi (1991). Liu is also the first person since Ossietzky to be denied the right to have a representative collect the Nobel prize for him.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

W~ Well, What is it???

Tonight we attended a "gender reveal" dinner party to find What our first grandchild would be.
Well, It's A Boy!! I can't wait to meet my Grandson!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


 I have learned over these years of battling cancer that victories come in many ways.
They may be small victories like getting out of bed and taking a shower which the day before you were unable to do. Or perhaps being able to get up a few mornings a week to work. For many, going to work does not seem like a victory...until you can't do it anymore. Then it becomes a great victory.

Some are much larger victories, like surviving chemo, radiation, surgeries , on-going tests and endless treatments.
Perhaps it was the day I crossed the finish line at my first marathon...that was indeed  a Victory!

Very wise counsel was given to me not long ago. "Celebrate the Victories, no matter how big or small they may seem". I try very hard to remember this advice, especially on the hard days when I may feel more defeated than victorious.

 Deuteronomy 20:4
For the LORD your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory."

Monday, April 25, 2011

U- Understanding

My friend has cancer~ by Elayne Minich (2008)
What do I do, how do I be a friend when my friend is living with cancer?

I decided to touch on this because I think this is a tough area for everyone. Just last week I sent an e-mail to a few friends after talking with my counselor and decided I needed to be specific about how they could help. Realizing that others don't know what you need if you don't ask. Many people can't or won't ask so I hope this puts a voice to those that need it. There are some do's & dont's here that I hope you find helpful. I realize that it is very difficult to know what to say or do so hopefully some of this will help you and your friend. After 10 years of living with cancer these are a few things that I have found helpful~

~ phone calls, cards, e-mails, comments on their blog, etc. Sometimes phone calls are too much, especially if your friend is going through treatments and does not feel well. If you are a caretaker, maybe encourage letting voice mail pick up the calls until the person feels up to returning them. Don't be discouraged if you don't hear back from them, it still means a lot.

~ going for a walk or run together if your friend is well enough. This is always a nice change and helped me both times. Getting outdoors and moving is very therapeutic however sometimes your friend may need encouragement to get out there.

~ Staying positive about your friends future. Talk about goals, plans, life. There are plenty of doubts regarding the future and talking about moving forward is very helpful.

~ talk about your life and family ( hopefully the positive things). Your friend wants the distraction of other people's lives. Not to dwell on theirs all the time.

~ No-one wants to be in this situation, and your friend definitely does not want to be perceived as "unable". If they are up to it give them opportunities to help you or others. This may be in a big or small way. Whatever they may be up to, use your discretion so they don't feel "obligated" if it is too much. Many people going through or that have been through cancer like to "speak" to groups or encourage others in any way that is helpful. If there is an opportunity, ask them.

~ Get together. Do the things you always did together. Go out for lunch, coffee, shopping etc. If your friend is not up to that just visit, talk, watch a movie together. Work on a project together ( photos, painting, family journals, etc). Especially during times that family members are away. Idle time is very difficult, so filling in some of that time is helpful.

~ Let your friend know you are praying for them. I can personally tell you I know when there is prayer being lifted up for me. Trust me-they know.

~ Let them know how you feel about them, that you love them and what they mean to you.
~ Have Fun! Laugh!

What to avoid~
~ Questions, questions, questions. It is very difficult for the person with cancer to continually be answering questions. Each time it brings the situation to the forefront of their minds and they have to then work very hard to "shake it".
It is understandable that you want to know what's going on and how your friend is "really" doing. I have been in the same position with many friends. If they have a blog or newsletter that is the best way to keep up with the details they want to share. Otherwise asking someone like their caretakers, or family would be a better alternative.

~ Don't ask them if they are going to die or how long they have to live. Yes, people do ask these questions. This is troubling enough with out having to answer that question. Remember, be positive and look forward with them. If they want to share that, they will.

~ please do not feel the need to tell your friend about everyone you know that has cancer and how horrible a time they had or that they did not make it. This really does not help. If the story does not have a happy ending it is not appropriate to share with your friend or their family members.

~ please avoid introducing your friend as "this is the one with cancer" or "cancer patient". Your friend is trying to live a normal life and their "normal" name works just fine :)

~ If your friend is in treatment, be encouraging about the beautiful person they are to you. Avoid focusing on what it may be doing to them physically. It is temporary. It is not helpful to your friend if you take one look at them and begin to cry or have a horrified look on your face. Just remember who that person is~ your friend.

Most people are affected by cancer in one way or another. I hope that sharing this is helpful to you and your friend should you ever be in this situation.

I know some of you are also survivors, family members, caretakers, etc. Your thoughts left in the "comments" section would be great to share on this subject from your own experiences.


Just can't get this song out of my head today.I guess the Time spent at the lake this past weekend with my family just went by too fast.
T is for TIME...cherish it, enjoy it, savor it, love it, spend it!

S~ Socks and Surprises!!

I have a few letters to catch up on with the A-Z challenge. Letters S & T will explain why I am behind.

This past weekend was spent with my family at the lake celebrating 2 Special birthdays. My husbands 50th and my youngest son's 21rst!

This is where SOCKS and SURPRISES comes in! My husband, Chris is always asking me ( before he heads off to bed) "do I have any black socks for tomorrow"? Well, sometimes I can answer yes and...well, mostly not. Either way, it is an on-going question here. One night I said "you are going to end up with 50 pairs of black socks for your birthday"! He said "good"!

It was now time to decide what to do for his 50th birthday. A surprise party, a big get-together with everyone, a vacation?? We talked about it and decided a weekend at the lake with the kids would be perfect. However, I really wanted him to know how much everyone loves and appreciates him. So, with the help of Many of his family and friends, we were able to collect and sneak bags full of black socks to the lake!

Saturday night, after a surprise fajitas dinner ( his favorite) that was catered in, us girls set all the gifts out for Chris to open. One by one he opened his presents! First one, black socks, he laughs, second one, black socks, he looks curious, and on and on till he reaches 60 pairs of BLACK SOCKS!! It was fun watching him open them up and reading who had sent each pair. He was defiantly surprised and we all got a good laugh!  Thank you to everyone who was there in "Spirit" and helped make this a Black Sock Surprise Birthday!!                                          

             "I will never complain about anything ever again"!!~ Chris

Thursday, April 21, 2011

R~ Running!

Inspired To Run
By~ Elayne Minich

My journey as a runner began nearly four years ago when I, along with five other family members trained for and ran The Dallas  Half Marathon in memory of our brother Jim, who just 7 months prior lost his short but heroic battle with leukemia.
 While I was in training I decided to have a physical due to pain in my back that was getting worse. At that time I was a 9 year stage 3 breast cancer survivor, about to be hit with the news that the cancer had spread to my bones, stage 4. Now facing more treatments and very difficult decisions including whether or not to keep running. I did, and completed the Half Marathon, inspired the whole time by how hard Jim fought. That was what kept me going.
 It did not take long before  I decided to tackle a full marathon with my goal set on the Dallas White Rock marathon. Again, during training the cancer roared it's ugly face, this time spreading to the pectoral muscle. More treatments, surgeries and tough decisions combined with the loss of my father-in-law, mother-in-law and 18 year old nephew, all within a years time.
  I have been fortunate to have support from my doctors, family and friends that fully supported my running and did everything to help me reach my goals.On  December 5, 2009, I completed my first marathon with my husband and running partner by my side, and our kids cheering us on at the finish line!
 Running has not only helped save my life and helped with the many healing processes, it has become my passion.
  I decided to become a Personal Trainer and share this love with anyone that will run with me. I teach 5k and 10K run groups and boot-camps. The joy I have teaching and sharing my running experiences is what gets me up each day and keeps me going as I continue to fight for my life.


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Queen Liliuokalani



Hawaii’s last sovereign queen was born on September 2, 1838 in Honolulu. According to Hawaiian tradition, she was adopted at birth by Abner Paki and his wife, Konia (a granddaughter of King Kamehameha I). Liliuokalani’s childhood years were spent studying and playing with Bernice Pauahi, the Pakis’ natural daughter.

Liliuokalani received her education at the Royal School and became fluent in English. She was also a member of
Kawaiahao Church, which was built under the direction of Hiram Bingham, the leader of the first group of missionaries to Hawaii in 1820. In 1862, she married John Owen Dominis, the son of an American sea captain.

In 1874, Liliuokalani’s brother,
David Kalakaua, was elected as Hawaii’s new king. One of his first acts was to name William Pitt Leleiohoku as his heir; just three years later, however, the crown prince died at the age of 23. Liliuokalani was now directly in line for the throne.

Kalakaua himself died in January 1891 in San Francisco. On January 29, the
USS Charleston was sighted off Diamond Head, its hull draped in black and the Hawaiian flag at half-staff. Suddenly, the Hawaiians knew: Their king was dead. Government ministers insisted that Liliuokalani immediately sign an oath to uphold the constitution that had been forced upon her brother.

Under the constitution, Liliuokalani wielded little power. She formed a Cabinet three times, and each time it was rejected by the Legislature. She drafted a strongly royalist constitution, but no one supported it.

Finally, on January 17, 1893, pro-American forces overthrew the government and proclaimed a provisionist government with Sanford B. Dole as president. Liliuokalani had no choice but to surrender her throne. She made a plea to the U.S. government for reinstatement, and a representative of President Grover Cleveland found the overthrow to be illegal. Dole, however, refused to accept the decision.

The queen withdrew to her residence, Washington Place, and urged her supporters to be patient and avoid bloodshed. A fierce uprising was firmly squelched in January 1895, and although she denied playing a role in the attempted takeover, Liliuokalani was arrested and taken to a second-floor room at
Iolani Palace. It would serve as her jail cell for nearly a year. During her confinement, the queen wrote one of Hawaii’s most beloved songs, "Aloha Oe" ("Farewell to Thee").

Liliuokalani was pardoned in October 1896. In her remaining years, the deposed queen fought for the restoration of the Hawaiian kingdom. She died in 1917 at age 79.

If you have made it this far there is a special reason I chose to write about Queen Liliuokalani.In 2005 we had an opportunity to spend the summer in Hawaii on the Island of Oahu while my husband worked on a job. Our apartment was on  "Liliuokalani Ave". While there, we decided to learn about the history of Hawaii as well as the Queen whose name our street was named after. Several years later, after my second diagnosis my son Kevin and his wife Nikki brought me a little kitten to cheer me up. Needing to choose a name for her, we chose a strong name that brought "happy thoughts" and wonderful memories. This is our "Queen Liliuokalani" ( real name) who we just call LiLi. .


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

P~ Personl Training

This is a fun topic for me as it is my passion as well as my profession! Teaching and training people of all ages and levels is such a rewarding job.
From my "Little Swimmers" as young as 1 year all the way up to the women in my boot camps and running classes.
There are always success stories for each person as they conquer their own goals, fears, battles and victories. Be them large or small, they do it!
After nearly 30 years of teaching swimming and 7 years of training there are many success stories. Here are just a few recent ones.

Little 3 year old Sarah who accidentally fell in her home pool was able to swim back to the side and pull herself out after learning this skill in our swim class!

Vicki, started out as a student in our 5k learn to run class. In just several months she went on to complete her first half marathon!

Seeing the excitement on the runners faces as they cross the finish line at their first 5k!

Watching the "trickle down effect" as  my clients teach and involve their family and friends!

I am so blessed to be able to work with and teach so many people of all ages and physical backgrounds. There are days, like my clients have, that are harder for me than others with many side effects to deal with. However I believe it helps keep me strong, healthy and committed as I continue to fight my own battles and reach my own personal goals.
P is for Personal Training~

Monday, April 18, 2011

Nature & Oasis

Getting behind, need to cover N and O today! These are two of my favorite words and very important parts of my life.
I have always been in love with nature. Pretty much anything you can do outdoors I love. In these last four years this has become more important than ever as it provides for me a place of rest and healing.
What is your oasis? A question I was recently asked, and the answer is Nature, in all it's beauty, peace and wonder.
Sometimes it is just sitting outside in my backyard or planting my garden. It may be climbing a mountain to take in beauty that is so breathtaking you never want to leave.  A midnight kayak ride under a full moon or watching the sunset at the end of a long day at the lake.

Biking through the woods in Oklahoma or running at a park in Prague, taking in all the sounds, smells and beauty! The snow stinging my face as we run through the falling snowflakes.
Walking along a beautful beach with your feet in the water. Swimming...anywhere. I love the feel of gliding through and being under water, I can spend hours and hours swimming and never tire of it.

Oasis~a place of peace, safety, or happiness in the midst of trouble or difficulty. In Nature is where I find my oasis, the places where I feel peace, comfort,rest & God.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

M~ Minichs

Meet My family~ The MINICHS!

                                                Matthew Minich

                                               Kevin & Nikki!

                                        Timothy and Stephanie!

                                                 Chris & Elayne

M~ is for My family... The Minichs :)

Friday, April 15, 2011

L~ Life and Death in Shanghai

Who do you think of when you think of a hero, someone you admire and would love to meet? One person that always comes to mind in Nien Cheng. A phenomenal women who stood for what she believed in under conditions that most men and women would have crumbled.

The book Life and Death in Shanghai written by Nien Cheng is one of my all time favorites. It was a required reading book in my oldest sons history class in high school. He suggested we read it. One by one the book has been passed around our family and on to friends. It has traveled from Texas to Hawaii to China and recently returned from Spain. It is well worn and I hope many more people will read her amazing story of strength, courage, and standing for what you believe in.

After reading this book, I was so inspired I decided to locate Nien Cheng and try to contact her. I was successful and wrote her a letter letting her know how much her life and courage inspired me.  I also told her that two of my sons were able to travel to China after reading the book which added so much more meaning to their trip, especially as they stood on The great wall of China and visited Beijing.

I was thrilled when I received a letter back from her. At the time she was 91 years old, eloquent in her response and even sent me her e-mail address!
This is a women I would have loved to sit and have tea with and consider a hero. I am so thrilled to have this well worn book and her letter she so graciously took the time to write to me.

                        Life and Death in Shanghai~ a must read!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

K is for Kim likes Kefir and.....

Tonight I felt stumped with the letter K. Nothing sounded good. I decided to call on the FaceBook friends and asked what their favorite word, book, movie,place, etc. is that begins with the letter K? A few good suggestions, but I have to say Kim's answer was too good not to use..thanks Kim!

Kim likes Kefir and kabobs but not ketchup and looking through a kaleidoscope in Kalamazoo but stay away from kryptonite while watching Kite Runner in Kansas which only has Kangaroos in zoos where kerosene is not often used and karaoke is a...n ear killer and kit kat candy bars are popular and Kim recalls Katowice, Poland where there wasn't anyone Kayaking at the time and nobody had a Koran like they have in Kazakstan but don't play a kazoo while wearing Keds in the kennel with a kernal keepsake and making one long sentence is the key.
Thanks to the Kindness of some friends I didn't miss the letter K .

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

J is for Jim

Today I would like to share a very special person with you, my brother-in-law Jim. There were so many special things about Jim's life that I can not list them all here. I will write about some of the most powerful ways Jim impacted my life and gave me strength and courage to face what was ahead.

Almost four years ago, we found out that at age 38 our brother  had Leukemia. He was treated very quickly and aggresivly. This is where Jim became a hero to so many of us. He was so young and strong and fought with everything he had. Trial after trial he hung in there, when most people would not have been able to. In just 3 short months and one very courages battle, Jim went home to be with the Lord.

Jim taught us all how to love and give with everything we have. How to hold on and fight until God says "it's time". We witnessed suffering and miracles. We loved, laughed, cried and lost together.

Feeling so helpless we wanted to do something special to honor Jim's life. This was the beginning of "Team Ambo" and my start as a runner. Six of Jim's family members trained and ran the Dallas Half Marathon, including myself,my husband and son, Jim's wife, sister and brother-in-law. It was a bitter sweet race!
During training and only 4 months after we lost Jim I was diagnosed for the 2nd time with Stage 4 cancer. I don't think either my husband or I really ever considered not finishing what we had started. So, with the approval and support of my doctors I began treatment and continued training.

There were so many days that I had to pull from this experience with Jim. I would picture him in my mind when I was having trouble running and think about how strong he was and how hard he fought. "If Jim could go through what he endured I can do this"!  We lost our sweet Jim on April 26, 2007 and finished the race in November of 2007.
                      In memory of our hero.. James Patrick Minich...Ambo!
J is for JIM

Monday, April 11, 2011


Following up my post on "Home" comes the letter I for INTENSE! Spring has arrived in Texas and with it comes our spring storms.
We were woken up at 1 AM last night to the sounds of hail pounding against the glass and strong winds. The power was out and the only light we all had was from our cell phones. In this part of the country you have a designated spot to take cover in the case of tornadoes. This storm had all the makings of a tornado with the hail, winds that sound like a train coming, green skies and the outside moving around in all different directions.

We grabbed our cat, dog, pillows and blankets and headed for the pantry, our "shelter". The storm came and went quickly, but left our yard in shambles.
We all went outside to evaluate the damage. Several of the neighbors were outside as well. Fortunatly all the damage was to the yards. No homes or people were hurt that I am aware of.

Our backyard was hit the hardest. We lost 2 trees. The first one was planted for me on my first Mothers day when we moved in 13 years ago. This tree has always been special to me. It was not just my first Mothers day in our new house, it was also my first year with cancer. The tree has always represented life to me. As I sit here and write this I am looking outside at what is left of it. It is battered and torn but...still standing! Maybe a better way to look at it.
 I also lost my wooden chair swing..also a Mothers day present from many years ago with so  many special memories.
 Our tree landing in several neighbors yards. I am sure they just love that!

 The winds were so strong, the tops of the onions in the garden were torn right off. The yard smelled of onions when we were out there at 1 AM.
 The second tree split right and half, crushing the swing.

I~ is for the Intense Texas spring storms! My daughter-in-law (to be) just left me a message with the word "INSANE"! I think that fits as well today.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

H~ Home

Spring 2011
 Once again, I had a different topic I was going to write about today but as the day when on and my husband and I worked in our yard, I felt this was better suited for today.
Tomorrow marks the day we moved into our home 13 years ago. At the time, my youngest son was 7 with his 8th birthday just 2 weeks away! I remember setting out their Easter baskets in the kitchen for their first morning and Easter in our new home.
We have watched our kids grow up here, literally going from boys to men. As with any family, we have laughed, cried, celebrated and said good-bye during these past 13 years.
Home has been a place of love and comfort for me. Especially during the difficult times going through all the treatments, surgeries and challenging moments. It is a place of refuge where I feel warm, safe and loved.
There really is no place like HOME!
Winter 2011

Friday, April 8, 2011

G~ Grandparents

My sons still talk about those special memories they had when they were younger with all of their grandparents.
From swimming at G&G Ski's house with all their cousins to sneaking more Dr. Peppers than they were supposed to have.
The funny times when G&G Ski would come over on Halloween to help us "haunt the house". Grandpa Ski even played along as a scary monster sitting under a tree and scaring the kids who dared to poke him to see if he was real.

Each summer the boys traveled to Tulsa to spend a week at G&G Minichs. These grandparents, sadly are no longer with us but the memories will be there forever.
Like G&G M. opening up a world of different experiences for them. From the musical "Oklahoma" to photographing the buffalo and visiting with a local artist. And who can forget "the camper ghost" with Grandpa M. or helping at meals on wheels with Grandma M.
We now find ourselves getting ready to take on this role of Grandparents to our first grandchild who will be here in October! We look forward to loving and creating new and special memories with each of our grandkids!

At age 34 I prayed God would let me raise my kids and be here till they were grown. At age 43, when my kids were all grown, I prayed I would be here to see them get married. At age 46, we have skipped right to praying to live to be 96 and be Great-Grandparents!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

F~ Fatigue

Fatigue~ not the topic I had planned to write about today. Unfortunately Fatigue is a very common and frustrating side effect that I ( and most survivors) have to live with.

It interferes with many parts of your life and the daily plans you may have, as it has done today. Sometimes you can feel it creeping up on you and other times it just hits you like a ton of bricks.

After I finished teaching my 5k class tonight I planned to go home and take it easy, as today has been one of those days that it has been "creeping" up on me. However, tonight was supposed to be a "run" night with my husband. So, I told him I was ready to go but it wasn't going to be pretty.

Off we went for a 3 mile run. Although I didn't feel good, I consider myself very Fortunate just to be out there running. Even if it isn't pretty :)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

E~ is for Elisa & Nathan Bond

Elisa & Nathan Bond are a young and loving couple with an adorable 18 month old daughter.  I have been following their story of struggle, life and most of all, extraordinary  love.
They were featured on The Today show this morning.
Their strength and positive attitudes are exceptional. Please keep this beautiful family in your prayers. To visit Elisa's blog go to;

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

D~ Determination

There were many "D" words I wanted to use today, but I am going to go with DETERMINATION!
I chose this word on my way home this morning from teaching my Outdoor Fitness Group, basically a boot-camp. I could not help but think of how hard all my clients work. They do or try anything I ask of them. Including  army- crawling through sand. Not their favorite :) Tonight I will be introducing a longer run with more hills to my 5k class. I am sure they will attack it with the same determination.

It is the essence of living a strong and healthy life as a survivor....yup, DETERMINATION!

Monday, April 4, 2011


Cancerversary! I am not sure where I first heard someone use this term, but I decided I liked it! Your cancerversary is the anniversary of the day one becomes a survivor, which is from the moment you are told you have cancer. A day you will never forget and one which you will come to celebrate year after year.Some people make it a very special day, like a birthday, others simply acknowledge the day in smaller ways. I like to go for a run, a swim at the lake, things like that. Just enjoying the fact that I am healthy enough to do it.
       I am happy to tell people which birthday I am celebrating or how many years I have been a survivor, as it means "I am still here"!
My next Cancerversary is August 21 and it will be 13 years!
  Happy Cancerversary to all of you that will celebrate your special day of survivorship!

B ~ Blogging, should I or not?

When I received the 2nd diagnosis nearly 4 years ago that the cancer had spread to my bones and was now considered Stage 4 metastatic cancer, I had many decisions to make. One of them being who do we tell and how do we tell everyone without having to say the words over and over again?

My first thought was "No WAY am I going to start a blog"! I guess I didn't want my life to be another sad story. After thinking about it and much consideration, I decided not only would it be a very helpful tool to let everyone know what was/is going on but a great way to seek support, ask for prayer requests and maybe even provide a little healing therapy for me.
It has turned into all of that and more, which i will save to write about in another post during this challenge.

April has brought a new challenge!

What is the A to Z Challenge?

It’s blogging a letter of the alphabet every day the month of April (with Sundays off for good behavior.) It begins April First with the letter A and ends April 30 with the letter Z.
My first post for April is 
A is for April ( don't worry I will get more creative as time goes on 
I have entered this blogging challenge on day 4, so I have some catching up to do).April has brought a new and interesting challenge for those of us who love to blog. I have decided to take this challenge on in hopes that it will help me be more creative as I write about daily life as a person living with metastatic cancer.

Friday, April 1, 2011

2011 Komen Survivor brunch and fashion Show

I spent a wonderful morning Saturday with my friend and sister survivor, Natasha at the 2011 Komen Survivor brunch and fashion show. I am not sure if we were wind blown,in a hurry to get our raffle tickets or simply needed more coffee in this picture. But, it was the start of a fun morning!
Elayne & Natasha
A highlight of the morning for us is getting our raffle tickets and picking from all the wonderful prizes! We always try to win the garage door opener, kind of as a joke ...this year Natasha won it!! We laughed so hard! I won a spa package from L'Occitane for my  beat up feet :) Great stuff.
Natasha and I with our prizes!
It has been announced that this will be the first year Race For The Cure will be held in Denton, on Sept. 24th! The organization is now reaching 8 ( I believe) counties vs. the 3 it has been at for many years.
$800,000 was awarded in grant money to local organizations that are working for the cause. We watched a few survivor stories of how women and their families have been helped through Komen when there was no where else to turn.

They do a beautiful job of making all survivors feel special.From the elegant brunch to the recognition of all survivors. From those diagnosed just a few months ago, all the way to a 39 year survivor...who gives all of us hope!

I was the person at our table with the pink card..Longest Survivor :)

I ran into a special group of women who I call "The Lewisville Ladies".These were the women who mentored me from my support group back in 1998 when I was first diagnosed at 34 years old. It is always nice to spend some time celebrating survivorship with all these fellow survivors. A lovely morning brunch :)
While looking at the Komen website I found these pictures of Olympic Gold medal winner Nastia Liukin signing my race bib # after one of the races! Put on your running shoes and participate in one of the local 5k Komen Race for the Cure will be helping many people!
Nastia Liukin signing my race bib!

Elayne with Nastia Liukin after the Komen race


Related Posts with Thumbnails