WHAT A WEEK!! In just 7 short days I have come within $156 of reaching the minimum fund raising requirement to participate in the Komen 3-Day for the Cure!
I received 3 donations this week and they were all from people who have been my supporters since the first step in this journey (and for some, from my very first steps). I am thrilled to tell you about this trio.
I was delighted (but not at all surprised) to receive a generous donation from the Friedman family. From the minute they joined the U101 family, Dan and Sally have been on Team Jenn! They have supported me in many ways including feeding me many dinners, offering me therapeutic hours with their precious daughters Julia and Calla, and keeping my sweet tooth satisfied with regular servings of Sally’s famous desserts! They are my family away from my family and I am thankful for their cheers and support! (and happy early birthday to Calla who will be 2 this weekend!)
Helen Jones, or “Mama Helen,” is the mother of my dear friend, Sara. There is so much I could say about this beautiful warrior but I think the best story is the connection between Sara’s mom and mine. Aside from both being faithful Catholic women, both Helen and my mom have fought and won against incredible odds. When my mother told me she had a brain tumor, Sara was an amazing supporter and quickly activated Mama Helen’s prayer list. It worked! So when Sara told me that Helen had been diagnosed with breast cancer, I returned the favor. Mama Linda’s prayer chain went into overdrive. These two women, who have never met or spoken, have created a bond between my friend and I that is like a sisterhood. I am very thankful for Helen’s continued support and glad to report that while last year we walked while she was in treatment, this year we will celebrate her being cancer free!
My uncle, Robert, and his family, Charleene, David, and Kennedy, made a significant contribution to my fundraising efforts this week. Cancer affected our family the most when my grandfather, Robert’s dad and best friend, passed away. David and Kennedy never got to meet their grandpa because of this disease. It is my hope that in their lifetime they will see a world that is cancer free! After seeing two friends in the fight against breast cancer, Robert & Char were inspired to take a bold step to help find a cure. I am honored to add Tami Botello and Denise Holiday to the list of women who Team New Kids on the Walk will support through our journey. Tami is currently undergoing treatment for her 2nd diagnosis with breast cancer. Denise is a survivor who beat this terrible disease several years ago.
Whew! Too emotional! Now on to the fun stuff.
Walking AND Partying!This weekend was Shawn’s big fundraiser “$20 to be 12 Again!” The purpose of the day was to raise money for Team New Kids on the Walk. The mission of the day was F-U-N! The event was successful in both efforts.
Shawn and Danielle planned a fun day packed with “field day” style activities. For an admission of $20, participants could compete against friends and frienimies for the coveted gold medals. There were many games to play and winners were drapped in their medals and given the right to strut around for the remainder of the party with their bling hanging proudly from their sweaty neck. I came sporting my Carolina Girls Know How to Fight t-shirt and my feisty attitude! I was totally motivated by the potential to win a medal or two!
Things didn’t turn out as I had hoped. Valerie and I were last place in the 3-legged race and got a big fat DQ for the toilet paper plunger relay. I blame my partner for both of those losses because when I switched partners, Karen and I came in 2nd place in the water balloon toss! The most upsetting part of this being that I was beat by the oldest party attendee, and biggest bragger of them all, Shawn’s dad! I love you CSM but I would have rather lost to the 3-year-old team of Andrew and Cora.
I did NOT finish 2nd, 3rd, or even top 6 in the scooter challenge, but it was not for lack of great effort. See in the photos below that it is very hard to scoot around on your bum, uphill, while trying to look cute!
I passed on Corn Hole but Valerie and her mom advanced to the quarter final round. They should have gotten the prize for longest game played. After 30 minutes, we changed the rules to “first team to 10 wins.” We would have been there all day waiting for them to reach 21.
Since I am sure many of you will be soon planning your own homegrown field day, below is a list of games and the objectives:
Toilet Paper Plunger Dash: Partner 1 holds a plunger between his/her legs, stick pointed out. Partner 2 holds a roll of toilet paper between his/her legs and attempts to put the paper on the plunger handle, hands free! Valerie thought that squeezing her legs tightly would keep her from dropping the paper. However, that also caused the already very small hole that I had to aim at to become squished and even smaller. Poor Strategy! WINNERS: PACO & BRAD
Scooter Challenge: People who are too old to be this close to the ground, and on the world’s smallest wheels, “scoot” around a square course, uphill one way, downhill the opposite, touching cones at each corner. Fastest scooter wins. PACO won with a time of 9.2 seconds. His strategy was to go belly first. It worked. And he has a skinned knee to show for it.
Corn Hole: A tailgate favorite! Bags in the hole and on the board count. First team to 21 wins! This was a bracketed event and PACO & BRAD secured another win.
Flip Flop Fling: Shawn and Danielle happen to have a swing set in their back yard. How convenient! Players put a breast cancer swagged flip flop on and swing as high as they would like then fling the flip flop off their foot. The flip that flops the farthest wins! KATIE was a dark horse in this event, swinging in at the last minute and beating all the other floppers.
Water Balloon Toss: This is an oldie but a goodie. Teams of 2 start close together tossing the water filled balloon back and forth, taking a giant step backwards after each round. The last dry team standing wins. I blame my fear of balloons on the final very damp toss. It was coming at me so fast, I just moved out of the way and watched it burst at my feet. And, I think Mr. Seuberling cheated! (See the pictures for evidence.) WINNERS/CHEATERS: DAD SEUBERLING & STEPHANIE
Water Balloon Hot Potato: Water balloon in a plastic ball. When the timer dings, the balloon bursts. Last dry player standing wins. We got down to about 6 players and quit on this one. All 6 were declared winners. THIS is how VALERIE secured her medal.
Potato Sack Race: Relay style! Player 1 hops down the field and makes a quick switch of the bag to player 2 who hops back. Genetics must be an advantage because mother son team LEA & ALEX were victorious!
Musical Hoops: I thought THIS would be my shoe in!! Think musical chairs but with hula hoops on the ground. I was like a stealth making my way from hoop to hoop always conveniently near a hoop when the music stopped. It was down to 2 players-me and 3 year old. How was I supposed to take it from him? Another medal down the drain. WINNER: ANDREW
THE AFTER DARK EVENTS
Beer Run Relay: Team of 4. Each member must run around the entire perimeter of the house, return to the front yard, chug a beer, tag a teammate. Repeat. I did NOT play the beer run relay! (Mom and Dad, I was very happy to be the DD that evening!) WINNERS: BEN, GINA, KATIE, & STACEY
Beer Pong: My mother reads this blog so I won’t go into detail. Those of you know beer pong can imagine how this bracketed event went down. WINNERS: COY & KAREN
The big money makers of the evening were the Jello-Shots! 2 for $1 and I saw the Washington’s flying out of people’s pockets like crazy! Careful to only give the kiddies the ones marked with a “K.” Those were the virgins. The others were a potent combo of spirits and gelatin. Yum, Yum!
Danielle gathered a slew of donations for a silent auction. Players could place their bids on a variety of items from a life size Dale Earnhardt Jr cut out (we WERE in NC!) to gift cards from local gift shops. I think Shawn’s parents went home with the most gear-and the emptiest wallet!
There were many “you had to be there” moments Saturday but, most importantly, a group of nearly 50 friends gathered to recognize and support Shawn’s efforts to find a cure for breast cancer. Some left winners, others left with nothing (yes, I am still a little bitter about the scooter challenge), but everyone left their mark on Team New Kids on the Walk! Thank you to everyone who came and contributed over $1500 to Shawn’s fund raising efforts!
You can find the photo evidence here: $20 to be 12 Again! Thanks to Cara who took the photos so that no one would be free from public embarrassment.
I hope you all find some inspiration this week to PLAY & WALK!
Interesting Note: I wrote this blog on Wednesday, August 4, 2010. The 30-year anniversary of Susan Komen’s death. Since the creation of the Komen foundation in 1982, more than $1.5 Billion has been raised in the efforts to find a cure. Cheers to Susan and her legacy and all of the walkers, runners, pray-ers, singers, dancers, speakers, and motivators who have brought attention to this disease.