Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Light the Night Kick Off Cruise

Because Tyler is one of the honored patients this year, I was invited to share our story at the Light the Night kickoff cruise on Saturday, July 23rd.  It has been special to share our story with others who may not know the path we have taken, and hopefully my words have had an impact on someone and Tyler's spirit will continue to live on.

The cruise was scheduled for a day that turned out to be one of the most beautiful of the year!  We sailed around the Puget Sound on one of the Argosy ships.  I was joined by some other Team Firefly members who wanted to join in the fun and we all enjoyed the trip.

Our team was honored as the top fundraising team so far this year.  We've raised over $5000!  They actually read off the names of all of the Seattle area participants that have already raised over $100 and I was so thrilled to hear that 9 of our 45 team members have already become Champions for the Cure this year!  In fact, at dinner tonight, one of my friends said that she couldn't believe how easy it was to hit the $100 mark. She donated a little bit herself and then sent out one e-mail to a few friends.

Congratulations to our $100 Plus club members:
- Glenna and Jeff Stone: $377.98
- Charlotte Frank: $287.98
- Bonnie Rydman: $202.98
- Kirstine Whisler: $202.98
- Cabryn Taylor: $102.98
- Ceci Rozendaal: $102.98
- Pam Smith-Graham: $102.98
- Celeste McArthur: $102.98
- Kari Laib: $102.98
Thanks so much to each of you that have joined the team and started your fundraising!  I look forward to seeing as many people as I can at this year's walk.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Exciting Light the Night news!

Recently, I was told that the local Leukemia and Lymphoma Society office plans to create an award to be given to the top fundraising team at the Seattle Light the Night walk AND they want to name the award after Tyler!  I would love for Team Firefly to be the first recipients of this award, so I ask that you join our team in fundraising this year if possible.

To see Tyler's Honored Patient story, you can go to:

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Smiles out of my Camera

I wanted to download some pictures from my camera onto my computer today and was pleasantly surprised to find some of Tyler from our trips to Houston.  Since they made me smile, I thought I would share with you too.  He was a wonderful goofy man that filled my days with laughter, despite the tough circumstances he faced!

Attacking his breakfast in the cafeteria at MD Anderson in Houston.

 Notice the 2010 Light the Night t-shirt that he is wearing...  We were in Houston the week before and week after LTN last year, trying to get on the trial.  He finally made it on the week after the walk.  Maybe that is why he is smiling in this photo?

Tyler had a great deal of sensitivity to bright lights after his bout with shingles last summer, so he wore all sorts of hideous sunglasses to protect his eyes.  Here he is showing on his beverages at a mexican restaurant we went to in Houston. I actually think it might have been our last day there, but this picture really makes me remember how great his attitude was and how much fun we had together!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Doing More with Less

According to this article in a Washington State newspaper, our blood banks must do more with less in the summer months. They write that our blood bank collects about 20% less blood over the summer, but needs about 20% more to meet the needs of local patients.

Can you give blood today to help?  I actually did my best to give blood after work today (which involved heavy duty water drinking throughout the day), but found that the local donation site had closed by the time I got off work.  I'll try again in the next week and hope that you will join me.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

6 months gone

It's hard for me to believe that 6 months have passed since Tyler lost his battle with leukemia.  He lives on in the stories we tell and the memories that we treasure.  Recently, I had the opportunity to spend some quality time with many of Tyler's childhood friends and was so thankful to hear them telling jokes about his cross country running prowess.  Apparently, Paul actually beat Tyler in a race and made sure to invite the media to the event.

Life certainly changes as time continues to march on, but I am doing well.  I am a little worried that I won't be able to get enough time in on the soccer field this summer, as my teams aren't playing enough or on the right nights.  :)  I am thankful for the continued friendship of the many friends that I made through Tyler, as well as the new friends that I am making now.  It is strange to restart your life again.

I read an amazing story several months ago about a woman who had lost her grandmother, an avid button collector.  From time to time she would find a button in a completely random place like the bathroom sink.  I thought that was an amazing story and, after much thought, I decided to give Tyler a song that he really loved and consistently made me think of him.  From time to time, I hear his song on the radio and remember that he loves me still. I was quite moved when his song played just before the craft swap a couple of weeks ago.  It felt like he was telling me that he was happy that I doing this fundraising (or maybe just happy that I was giving away some craft supplies).

Thanks to the many people who prayed for me and encouraged me, especially in the first few months when the pain was so much more sharp.