Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A sad addendum

Not long after my last post, I found out that our friend Allie passed away today. We had met Allie and her family in Texas. They are from Colorado and have been all over the country the last few months trying to fight Allie's recurrent leukemia. She had a cardiac arrest during a lung biopsy this morning. Roger and I are very sad. Allie was not much older than Charlotte and leaves loving parents and a twin sister, Sarah, behind. We are thinking sad thoughts for their family today.

Please keep them in your prayers.

Lots of goings-on

So, where to start? A lot of announcements, it seems.

First of all, if you're not busy this afternoon/evening (Wednesday, 3/24), head on over to Chilis at Virginia Center and eat (or drink) for ReeseStrong. 20% of your meal cost will go to ReeseStrong when you present a flyer. Flyers will be available at the restaurant and are also available at Romp n' Roll. Roger and I had a lovely lunch over there and got to see some of our favorite families as well!

ASK has some events coming up soon too, including the ASK walk on April 24th. If you're not busy racing in other events, this is a fun thing to do. They featured Charlotte on their posters and flyers this year. We are honored.

Things are rolling along on the CJSTUF front as well. We are getting ready to redo our website so watch for changes (coming soon!!!). We have had many requests from home-based businesses that want to raise money for CJSTUF so we have decided to select one to two home-based businesses per month that will raise funds for CJSTUF. Hopefully that will help spread the wealth a little.

Our first featured business is Pampered Chef. Jessica Cole is the sales representative in charge of the party and it will be hosted by Sue Ferguson. The actual party will be on 3/16 at about 7 PM. I will post more information soon if you would like to RSVP; however, you do not need to be present to help. 15% of all sales from this party will go to CJSTUF. You can go online to and type in CJSTUF. I will have some mini catalogs and order forms at Romp n' Roll soon (probably by next week) in case anyone wants to place an order directly from me. I'm hoping to attend the party itself. If you've never attended a Pampered Chef party, you would be in for a treat. The food is usually FABULOUS and I always come away with a great new cooking tip (or two!).

Finally, tomorrow is the big (drum roll) reveal from the Thumbs Up Ball. The MOMS Club of Mechanicsville (Cool Spring Chapter) will be coming by Romp n' Roll at about 3 PM to present the proceeds from the Valentine's Weekend Fundraiser. If you're in the area, stop on by to check the results. I promise we will post news on the blog and Facebook soon after.

I think that's it for now. Yucky weather seems to be moving in to Richmond so Open Gym is hoppin' today; however, I don't think we'll get tons of snow. Just wet goop!

Stay warm and dry...Rachel

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Others still fighting the fight.

Very quickly:

Wesley Berry, who we've been following for a long while (We sponsored a hole at his golf tournament), will be going into surgery tomorrow morning to debulk/remove the mass in his brain so everyone please send out the positive energy. Here's his Caringbridge site:

Wilson Braun, who I've just started following, is going in Thursday to place a G-tube which will be a tremendous relief for his family.

As always, there are many others. Go seek.

Please plan to come by the Richmond Kids Expo at the Richmond International Raceway on Saturday starting at 10am. Romp n' Roll will be there and Rompy is actually scheduled to make an appearance! He will be suspiciously about the same size as Mr. Roger. Imagine that! :-)

Been feeling massively mushy lately about all the support and care we've received, and are still receiving, from our Romp n' Roll "family." A mom was talking to me lately, heaping lots of love on us and I thought, for the thousandth time, how much our members and staff have helped us out. Just wanted to say "thanks" yet again.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Insurance Hilarity...And a day tinged with sadness.

Ok, so you may think from the title that I am going to wax poetic again about health insurance.


The only thing I have to say about the health insurance front is that I think we are (mostly) done with medical bills from Charlotte. I did get one last bill from MCV for some leftover doctors visits. I had been round and round with Humana and MCV and I think they billed it incorrectly. Supposedly it was fixed but then I got another bill....

The upshot of all of this is...I will pay the bleepin' bill. In the grand perspective of things, it's nothing. Charlotte racked up over $700,000 (yes, those zeroes are correct!) in medical expenses last year and I think we paid for less than 10% of that out of pocket so I'm not going to nickel and dime the insurance company any more.

As a small aside, Roger and I have been most impressed by those in the medical community who have followed our story and contacted us in the last few weeks "just to see how we are doing". We have received cards and phone calls from my OB-Gyn, Charlotte's pediatrician (Dr. Weber who made the initial diagnosis), many of the staff from MCV including those who never even worked directly with us, people from our health insurance....the list goes on. It just feels good to be more than a number in their eyes. I know from working in health care that sometimes you have to do your job with a certain lack of emotion. If you get too caught up in it, you will go crazy or burn out (and I never even worked in a field with life or death situations like emergent medicine or oncology). That being said, it is so touching to know that these people didn't just look at Charlotte (and us) as just another cancer family. Or, hopefully, we are just another cancer family and this is how they treat everyone. These people deserve all the support, respect, and praise we can give them. It's a tough job!

Ok, I'm getting distracted. Back to the insurance story. I had to make some phone calls about a general liability policy for the Foundation. During one of my calls, I spoke with the man who answered the phone (the agent) and told him what I was looking for. He started asking very probing questions about the Foundation. What is it for? Who will it help? Do you and/or the members of your Board have any experience with nonprofit organziations (Um, yes sir. A combination of at least 50 years experience just in nonprofits alone. Not to mention the years of experience in organizational management and general quality business practices.)

The interrogation continued: What do you do for a living? What is your background? What does your husband do for a living? What is his background?

Are you getting the picture?

Then the questions got a little more inane. Actually, they weren't even questions but statements:

Him: Well, you know, it takes a lot of money to start a foundation like that.
Me: Um, yes sir. I am aware of that. It's all part of the plan.

And then it got interesting...

Him: So how did you decide to start this Foundation?
Me: Well, my daughter was very sick last year and when she passed away we decided to start a Foundation in her honor.
Him: Your daughter died?
Me: Yes, sir.
Him: That's TERRIBLE!
Me: Yes, sir.
Him: No, I mean, when a child dies that's just about the worst thing in the world!
Me: Yes, I can pretty much agree with you there.
Him: How old was she?
Me: She was four years old.
Him: Are you kidding me? That's just terrible. Horrible. That's just so sad.
Me: [Truly at a loss for words. I mean, really. Am I supposed to be comforting HIM???] Um, yes sir.

Fortunately, the conversation kind of shifted at this point. We talked coverage needs and policy parameters. All that objective stuff. He got a few more points of information from me, including my date of birth and Roger's date of birth just in case the underwriter needed it. At this point he says. sound a lot younger on the phone. I suppose I will take that as a compliment. I guess I sounded like a young kid just starting a Foundation "for kicks and giggles" until he realized how old I really was.

So there's your amusement for the day.

I need some amusement. As I mentioned before, the emotions have been riding high lately. It's very difficult to explain because I'm obviously not incapacitated by grief. It's like a low-riding hum. I just cry a lot. At silly, small things. I miss her. I miss going to the store and filling my cart with Macaroli and chocolate milk and anything princessy. I go to the Hallmark store and see cards that say "Happy Birthday Mom" and it makes me cry. And it's not even my birthday! I just realize that I won't get one of those. At least for a while. That's when the emptiness hits. Nobody bother me in May, please. I will be a MESS. I can already tell.

Fortunately, I have wonderful friends who take very good care of me. Well, us. People still bring us meals every once in a while. I've gone out a few times for drinks with friends. I get care packages in the mail (Amy, you're the BEST!). It all helps in small ways. It doesn't take away the sadness but it helps me cope...and sometimes I can forget.

Changing subjects, I just got a freelance gig with VOPA: The Virginia Office For Protection and Advocacy. Someone in their office got my name from the presentation that I did in Lynchburg last fall on Augmentative Communication and they have brought me in as an EXPERT to consult with them on some issues with adults in state facilities. Yes, the word EXPERT is actually listed as my title in the contract. I find that highly amusing. The project will be about 3 months with meetings, site visits, and some collaborative training so I think it will be interesting as well as a good way for me to keep my professional chops up.

The most interesting part about this to me is that I met with them WAY back in November. It was right after Charlotte's condition was deemed terminal. I went to the meeting not knowing where it would go and I never told them about Charlotte. They asked for a proposal and we traded emails back and forth after the meeting. I let them know that I would be away for a few weeks for vacation and then, of course, the holidays happened. When I talked with Roger about it, he advised me to just take it one step at a time. If they wanted me to do something and I wasn't able, I could just tell them at that point. So I didn't say anything. The holidays came and went. I didn't hear anything and by the end of January I just assumed that they had decided to go in another direction. Sure enough, I got a call last week from their office saying that they apologized for the delay but they were still interested and wanted me to come in to review and sign the contract. So whaddaya know?

My final topic for the day (you're getting a nice novella today, aren't you?) revolves around fundraisers. Some of you have contacted us about using your business as a fundraiser for CJSTUF (Usborne books, Tupperware, Pampered Chef, etc.). I know that some of these are already in the works but I think I may have lost a few emails.

First of all, if you contacted me or Roger and we never got back to you, please contact us again.

Our friend Erin is going to do an Usborne books sale at Romp n' Roll on March 11th. More details to follow.

Also, our friend Susan Ferguson is hosting a Pampered Chef party at her house on March 16th with Jessica Pittman as the consultant. Jessica is a Romp n' Roll mom and also works under Marie Snyder who has always been my Pampered Chef consultant. (PS Happy Birthday Marie!).

Finally, one of the Moms Clubs will be hosting the Book Sale at Romp n' Roll again on May 6th. They did a used book sale in December to benefit CJSTUF while we were at Disney. I think this one will be even bigger and better!

All of these events will benefit CJSTUF.

We will get more details out to everyone once I have official details like times, etc. We will add them to the events calendar. Again, if you have an business or organization that would like to raise funds for us, please go for it and let us know. We will be happy to help promote it in any way that we can. Please also know that the Foundation isn't going anywhere. If you need to wait to hold a fundraiser until we reach nonprofit status (goal: by July!), that's ok. We will always have the need for fundraisers and I don't want people to get burned out on asking for money in CJSTUF's name in the first six months or year. It's like a 'gotta pace yourself.

Ok, the carpal tunnel is kickin' in so I am really going to wrap this up.
Spring is coming. I can feel it in the air. Let's just get through the rest of February!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Thumbs Up Ball!

The Thumbs Up Ball was today! I know we have been blogging about it for a few weeks now. What a wonderful event! The MOMS Club of Mechanicsville (Cool Spring Chapter) did all of the work for this party and it was WONDERFUL in so many ways. The church gymnasium was decorated in pink and purple with lots of handmade butterflies everywhere! It looked like a princessy prom. There was food, craft activities, music, dancing, formal pictures provided by Hayes and Fisk photography. I haven't heard anything about final numbers but I know that over 300 tickets were sold and there were many silent auction items bid on and won! I personally bid on (and won) 2 cooking classes from Mise En Place and a Whole Foods gift certificate! All of the money raised from tonight's event will go directly to CJSTUF! How cool is that?

I know I won't be able to thank everyone here but special notes of gratitude are due to:
Robin O' Sullivan, Darya Suleske, and Tracy Surratt for their leadership in the MOMS Club. I know the club has about 50 moms and all were involved in some way but these ladies were involved in a lot of the heavy planning and deserve a special thank-you.

Big thanks as well to Triad, a wonderful live band that provided the entertainment. As musicians, Roger and I certainly appreciate the work of a quality band. They were top notch and I understand they play a lot in the area so check them out. In fact, I think they will be at O'Banks next week. Speaking of O'Banks, they were one of the many sponsors that donated items for the silent auction and raffles. I also saw great prizes from local representatives of The Happy Gardener, Tastefully Simple, Pampered Chef, Premier Jewelry, DoubleTree Hotels, Aloft Hotels, Hanover Air Park Auto, The Children's Museum, Ginter Botanical Garden, Avon, Pizza Fusion, Buffalo Wild Wings, Romp n' Roll, The Smokey Pig, Stroller Strides...whew! And I know I am leaving some folks out.

It's been an emotional weekend for me. I'm not really sure where it started. I was unusually weepy on my drive to work this morning. It just hit me for reasons I can't explain. Then things got "worse" when I spent about 90 minutes working on a slide show presentation on the foundation for the event this evening. Putting Charlotte's story into words (again) and adding all kinds of pictures just brought memories and thoughts flooding in.

Then, about 2/3 of the way through this evening's event, I realized: Roger and I were the only adults there without kids! (I'm not really counting the grandparents...and really, they had kids there too...their adult kids!) It was truly a family event and I loved seeing some of our regular romp n' rollers as well as many of our friends from church and the community. And yet, there remains this constant thought in my head that I no longer have a child. It really HIT me like a ton of bricks tonight.

I often hear people speak of our strength. It's been a constant theme. Again, tonight I had perfect strangers (as well as a few close friends) come up to me and remark, "I don't know how you do it. Where do you find the strength?" I can't answer that question with any kind of certainty but I can truly say that I just take each day one step at a time. I keep myself busy and that definitely helps.

Idle time = thinking time = opportunities for the mind to run wild and truly make you crazy.

One Day At a Time, Baby. One Day At a Time!

The surreal essence of my new reality plays out in some really bizarre ways sometimes. After so many months (a whole year) of an intense and stressful lifestyle, I am finding the occasional solace in the freedom that Roger and I now have. I would give anything to have Charlotte back my life...healthy. But when I spend full days at work and realize all that I can accomplish when I am not shuttling back and forth between home and the hospital OR strategizing on a new treatment protocol OR anticipating the next MRI or surgery, it is a harsh reminder of how much of our lives were lost in 2009.

When you become a parent, your life is consumed by your child in so many ways. Your life now revolves around their schedule: naps, eating, school, activities, vacations.

Now imagine that consumption intensified about 1000 times with a life-threatening illness.

And then imagine that one day, that all-consuming part of your life just ENDS.

Yep. It's bizarre. No other way to describe it.

Tomorrow we are planning to go up to Bethesda to visit the Georolds. This is the family that we met in Houston, lives in Denver, but is currently pursuing an experimental protocol at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for her recurrent leukemia. They have been blessed with a lot of family support during this leg of their journey and currently things seem to be working for Allie even though she's still struggling to get well. The experimental protocol on which they have her seems to be promising. We are looking forward to being able to see them again and support them in a small way.

Hooray for a weekend with no substantial snow. Hooray for a weekend with no cancelled birthday parties or classes. Hooray for the Thumbs Up Ball!

Hooray for our friends and family who love us everyday!


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Diggity Good Fun!

Scott Milstead (formerly of Carbon Leaf and majorly good drummer) has a new project playing family friendly music. Here's a letter he sent out about an upcoming benefit for Connor's Heroes and since we love Connor's Heroes, we encourage everyone to participate!

Well, it's happened...

... I'm in a kids band.

I tried to resist it but the temptation was just too strong. And besides, regression is a strong suit of mine, so why not?

Please read on!

We hope everyone is thawing out from the recent snow and wanted to let you know about some very exciting stuff happening in Diggity World.

Many of you may not know us, but we are The Diggity Dudes, playing Hip Music for Hip kids ( While most of you have been huddling around the fireplace and watching the snow melt, we've been hard at work rehearsing new songs as we get ready to record our debut CD in just over a week. Diggity Mike & Diggity Donny have recruited Diggity Scott to join the band on drums & percussion as the third fulltime Dude, while a host of other musicians are lined up to round out the music in the studio (Scott Duncan formerly of The Venture Rays on bass, Houston Scott of the Houston Scott Band on Harmonica, Sara Gleason of the Velvet Marias & Karen Lynn on back up vocals just to mention a few). The CD should be available in late spring and is going to be a Diggity Biggity Deal.

Of course we can't sit idly by and let our music go unheard, so on March 6th you're going to have 3 (YES THREE) chances to see us. First, we'll be playing in the Northside, at the 10th Annual Linwood Holton 5K, followed by a noon performance at The Diamond for the Flying Squirrels First Annual Family Festival. Then we wrap up the night with a huge full band benefit show at The National to support Connor's Heroes. Over the next few weeks, look for The Dudes in Style Magazine and appearing on Channel 6's Virginia This Morning promoting this epic day of events and great causes.

If you would like to support The Diggity Dudes, you can purchase tickets for The National from any "Dude" for only $10. This is an all ages show, and we take the stage at 7:00, so you can bring ALL YOUR LITTLE ONES and help us "Jump In The Air". The bill is headlined later by The Houston Scott Band, and all proceeds go to Connor's Heroes ( to benefit Childrens Cancer research.

Please pay our site a visit, or catch us on Facebook at The Diggity Dudes. Please, leave us a comment, and tell all your friends to support us on March 6th.

Diggity Mike, Diggity Donny & Diggity Scott

We're also in the early planning stages of a pasta dinner party the night before the Monument Ave 10K as a joint shindig for and First thing we need is to get people to cook and/or provide the food. We'll have it in a location with a kitchen so noone has to risk losing any Pyrex or Pampered Chef. The more provisions we get donated, the cheaper it will be and I would love to provide it free to FUN-raising members of TEAM CJ and Reesestrong. The menu will probably be Spaghetti, garlic bread, good salad, tea, chocolate milk, and beermosas. We might add other things as time goes by. The purpose of the pasta party isn't to make/raise money but to celebrate community and carbo-load for the race.

After the Thumbs Up Ball on Saturday, we'll start taking reservations for the pasta party. (By the way, have you bought your tickets to the ball?)

Anyone want to chair the Pasta Party Planning Committee? I'll chair the Pasta EATING Committee! :-)

Romp n' Roll is open, the sun is actually peeking out, and I have new, free musical software toys with which to play.

Our friends from Colorado, the Goerolds, are in Bethesda and Allie started her experimental protocol a couple days ago. Very interesteing drug that seeks out a protein particular to her type of leukemia and then releases a toxin that attacks the cancer cells. Some serious smarts behind that one. Drug companies = 1

Now if they would spend as much time and money on that as they do on helping old men keep it up, cancer would be a footnote. (Woah, was that out loud? Guess so.)

Anyway, those of you in the MD/DC/NOVA area might want to look them up. They have family around but I'm sure a little extra help of any kind would be appreciated. Rachel and I might try to take a quick trip up.

We also have a newer member of the CANCER SUCKS! club. Her name is Kayla Webb and her family is from my dad's neck of the woods in Tennessee. They're now in Houston for proton beam therapy at MD Anderson. Please think good thoughts for them and if you're in the Houston network, please reach out to them.

That is all.


Monday, February 8, 2010

One Month

Yep, yesterday was a month (It was also Peter Gabriel's Birthday). As Rachel says, it seems a lifetime ago. What has been happening to me, lately, has been that I'll look at a picture of Charlotte and be surprised, "Woah! She's gone, that's right. Man, that's weird." The "moments" are always there.

Her stuff is still in her room, no real need to do anything with it just now, kids at Romp n' Roll still ask about her including one at a Birthday Bash yesterday who I didn't even know had met CJ, and I still think about her constantly.

The child yesterday asked, "Where's your kid?" Who knows, maybe it was just a generic question kids ask. They do that sometimes. Mom was very cool about it. Sometimes, parents who know our story whither in embarrassment when kids do that but I have no problem with it. I love talking about Charlotte.

I answered the child, "Well, here's a picture of her." and showed her the picture box Annette made with CJ's framed picture and all the great quotes (Thanks, again Annette. You're so amazing!) And that was it. I think kids just need to be reassured sometimes. About what, exactly, I'm not sure. Just being "present" counts for a lot.

We really didn't think a lot about the actual month out thing although it did cross our minds. Mainly because we were SO busy. We held classes at RnR, Rachel and Emily organized (I escaped that!), I got a replacement coat for the one that started falling apart on me, and there were two Birthday Bashes, one of which was a 2-hour party instead of our normal 90-min.

Both parties were a blast and very therapeutic. Every moment I spend in classes or parties at RnR seems to help me deal.

The weekend weather made us cancel Saturday morning classes for the second week in a row. There will many makeups to schedule.

Also as Rachel said, CJSTUF is moving right along! We seem to still be doing things the right way and when we finally get our official non-profit status, the flood gates of activity should open wide on all fronts. It just takes a while to get everything in place and thanks to our wonderful advisory council, it IS being done the right way.

That brings me to the latest CJSTUF stuff. The Monument Ave. 10k planning and TEAM CJ organization is progressing. We have a good problem which I might have already mentioned. Some enthusiastic members actually registered more runners/walkers on their codes than I had planned so if you have not registered and have trouble once you try, please let me know. I'll bet it's getting close to full.

I officially registered for the Chicago Marathon in October. That means I'll be doing Chicago in October and Richmond in November. Oi! No fundraising for these yet. We'll let you know. If anyone wants to do either one/both of these with me, let me know.

Thought I'd let you all know about the efforts and sentiments of others:

James Staudte is a friend from U of Miami and has been training like a mad dog and collecting pledges for CJSTUF. He's been blogging about his experiences on his own page.

We also got a wonderful note from a member at Romp n' Roll which pretty much recounts several stories we've heard about Charlotte and her activities when we weren't looking. With her permission, I've pasted it below:

"Dear Rachel and Roger,

My thoughts and prayers have been with you for the past year. And it is with a heavy heart that I sit down to write to you how deeply sorry we are that Charlotte has passed. While I have no way of understanding what you are going through and will continue to go through as you grieve, I can share with you my memory of your sweet daughter.

Molly and I were visiting Romp n Roll for one of the first times at Open Gym. We were the only ones there until a charming little curly-headed girl bounded into the room. She immediately introduced herself…not waiting for me to initiate. When I learned she was your daughter, I thought what a lucky little girl to have parents who own this awesome kids’ gym. (The only thing cooler would be if you lived in a castle and owned a pony farm. J) Molly was just a baby so she wasn’t able to do much in the gym. And Charlotte took it on herself, as the proud owner, to show us how to utilize each piece of equipment. The funniest part was that she used her impeccable charm and manners to ask my assistance in “spotting” her or giving her piggy-back rides. I can still clearly see her adorable smile and hear her angelic “please”. And it worked. Almost to the point that I kept temporarily forgetting about baby Molly just sitting over by the little rompers area. Through her exuberance, Charlotte was able to show me what fun being a toddler was! I wanted to take her home with us. I couldn’t wait for Molly to get to toddlerhood so we could laugh and play like sweet Charlotte did!

So it’s a simple and brief moment in your child’s life that I am recounting for you. But I am sharing it because I want you to realize what a lasting impression she made on me in that brief 30 minutes or so. I imagine that’s how she lived her four years…to the very fullest when she could; charming people along the way. Charm is not always easy to find in other people’s children. Cuteness, sweetness…yes. But charm is a sign of someone special. How fortunate you are to be Charming Charlotte’s parents! And I know you realize that every day.

With our deepest sympathy,"

We LOVE stories like these. Please keep sending them if you have them.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Want to talk about the weather?

It seems like that's ALL anyone is doing these days. And for good reason, I suppose. If you haven't turned on the TV or radio in about a week or two, you may want to know that the mid-Atlantic is getting the biggest snowstorm of the year...decade...century...millenium. Oh, you hadn't heard?

Fortunately, we just keep Rompin' and Rollin'. The work schedule has had everyone in a tizzy and we've had to cancel Saturday classes two weeks in a row. Friday's classes were cancelled this week as well and we will have to see about Sunday. Most of our birthday parties have simply been rescheduled (rather than cancelled outright) and we even had some brave souls who came out in the rain and sleet yesterday for Max's 2nd birthday party. It was a blast! Roger and I hadn't worked a party together in ages. Open Gym was hoppin' earlier that day too before the weather got too nasty.

Yes, work has been busy and it's been a very good distraction. I think I've said that before but I think it also bears repeating. We have also been rolling along with the Foundation stuff. Our bylaws were approved by our Advisory Council/Board this week which means we can now begin to officially work with the IRS on our non-profit status. The members of the Board have also been meeting in their subcommittees to get things rolling. We have heard the requests and I promise that CJSTUF t-shirts and other merchandise are all coming soon!

With all of this going on, it's a sharp reality check to realize that today is February 6th and tomorrow will mark one month since her death. It really blows my mind. This month has been so busy that I honestly feel like it's been a lifetime since her death. I miss her every day. I see her in everything I do. I am sad but not distraught. I am so glad that Roger and I have something like CJSTUF in which to sink our energy. It definitely keeps the misery at bay. I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts yesterday: This American Life. If you've never heard it, it's a fascinating and fabulous public radio magazine with stories wrapped around a theme each week. Their show from the first week of the year was called 2010 and it contained stories surrounding "predictions" for the coming year. The first story is by Shalom Auslander about his neighbor and friend who was dying of cancer. The story really touched a nerve for me (in a good way) and I encourage you to take a listen (you can click on the link to get to their website and archive).

So now that I have your attention with our latest blog post, I will make sure you know about a few important announcements:

1. The THUMBS UP BALL is Saturday February 13th from 4:30-7 PM at Shady Grove Methodist in Mechanicsville. You can't get in without a ticket but you can get tickets at any Romp n' Roll location for just $10 each. This is a family event with food, live music, a visit from the Dance Fairy, a silent auction with lots of great sponsors (bring your checkbook!) . I am sure it will be a blast! Huge thanks to the MOMS Club of Mechanicsville for putting this together. I am hoping that it will be successful enough to turn it into an annual event!

2. If you are running for TEAM CJ in the Monument Ave 10K, don't forget to download your pledge forms. We have over 57 runners taking part in this event, not to mention the cheering squad that is forming as well.

3. Good news on the ReeseStrong front: she had her latest MRI on Friday (2/5) and continues to be cancer free. She got a very clean bill of health from the docs and we are so happy for them!

I think that's it for now. Roger is upstairs working on some music stuff and I'm sifting through emails, paperwork, and correspondence while I laze by the warm fire. If you're somewhere surrounded by snow and ice, stay warm. If you are somewhere warm, count your blessings!

Monday, February 1, 2010


This is extremely short notice but I thought I'd put it out there and see what happens.

Please only reply if YOU are the one able to help. If you know a person possibly able to help, please forward my contact info to them.

Here are the details: our Colorado friends, the Goerolds, are supposed to travel to Bethesda, MD tomorrow so that Allie can participate in a study. The problem is that. Allie has had a low fever the last few days and my not be able to fly commercial because of it. Odds are she still will but I'd like to have an alternate plan in place if possible and time is of the essence..

I'm hoping someone in the network might be able to arrange private transportation from Denver International Airport to Baltimore, Dulles, or Regan National. This needs to be arranged next to immediately. They are hoping to fly out tomorrow and the study begins Friday.

On top of that, they're going to need local support when they get here.

Let's see what we can do.