On Mondays I get to pick up my oldest granddaughter from school and sometimes we go to the nursing home to visit some ladies who live there. My granddaughter is only seven and many times young children are afraid of nursing homes but Abby isn’t. In fact, she loves going there and she especially enjoys playing with one of the resident’s Ipad. Technology connecting the generations!
Many of us will attend weddings or graduations during the months of May and June, but there is another event that occurs in the early spring in many hometowns: Relay for Life. If you or someone in your family has cancer then you probably already know what Relay for Life is, but read on.
What is Relay for Life?
You can read about it and what it does on the American Cancer Associations page. If you have never attended one I encourage you to do so. It brings whole communities together in a way that is touching and inspiring. It’s impossible not to be moved by the speeches, memorials and survivors walk.
Just about everyone I know has someone in their family who has been touched by cancer. As I write this my cousin Martha is at M.D. Anderson getting scanned to see if her latest treatment plan for her breast cancer is working. You can read about Martha’s journey here. http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/marthatodd
Martha has been involved in her communities Relay for Life in Milton, Florida for many years. She does it not only because she has cancer, but because she wants to help raise funds for research for the benefit of future generations.
The Many Colors of Cancer
Martha has breast cancer and the color most often associated with breast cancer is pink. NanaHood is pink in her honor and will stay pink until there is a cure, but there are many other colors and kinds of cancer.
In 1990 at the age of 51 my mother lost her battle with colon cancer. My husband’s father died of lymphoma the same year as my mother. My husband’s brother died of lung cancer just a few years ago. Cancer is color blind and all cancer has the potential to destroy the lives of people we love.
Just as there are different kinds of cancer there are different organizations who are determined to help in the fight. One of those organizations is Stand Up 2 Cancer. This morning I read a wonderful article on their site called, “You Are Not Your Cancer.”
The article was written by Paul Brenner M.D. and it says in part,
“I have been living with cancer for fifteen years. Early on, I observed how many of my thoughts were either unhealthy or focused on the future or past. One day, I realized my mind could not hold two thoughts simultaneously, that the negative anxieties were outweighing the positive awareness of everything that was so wonderful in the world around me. I found that it helped me to devise skills to control thoughts, and to help me realize that I am not my cancer.
Along the way, I have learned from my patient-teachers about the healing power of love. They have taught me to accept life with all its beauty and with all its thorns. They have instilled in me that fear is the enemy of love. And perhaps most importantly, love is the absence of fear. We cannot allow anything to diminish who we are, physically or emotionally: not cancer, nor life’s experiences.”
Not only was this article inspirational, also on the same site I saw a video made by middle school students and their teachers. They wanted to do something to help in the fight and so they created ”Dancing With The Teachers” modeled after Dancing With The Stars. They did a fantastic job of raising money for the Stand Up 2 Cancer organization.
Stand Up 2 Cancer is an awesome organization and I encourage you to learn more about it by visiting their website here.
Can We Do More?
Friends, when it comes to cancer and helping those who fight it on a daily basis let’s all ask ourselves how we can do more. Can we give more? Can we love more? Can we pray more?
I know I can.
Remember what Helen Keller said….
I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.
Whether it’s through Relay for Life and the American Cancer Society, Stand Up 2 Cancer, or another organization. Let’s all do more!
Yesterday I was driving and listening to the radio when I heard a news story that I just couldn’t believe. It happened in Kentucky, not too far from where I live. A man slipped into a supermarket and hid until it closed. Then he gave himself a party, and what a party it was.
* He cooked and ate 6 steaks, shrimp and birthday cake.(After all that I wonder if he needed some Tums, too?)
* He also drank a bunch of beer and smoked cigarettes.
* There were 57 empty whipped cream cans in the garbage.
* Then he crawled up in the ceiling rafters and went to sleep and that’s where the police found them.
His whole one man party was caught on the store’s surveillance tape. Since he was alone there is no way he can claim he did it due to peer pressure. Maybe he could say temporary insanity….
I’m willing to bet he was the type of child who could easily entertain himself. Ya think?
This is a blog hop. What are your Thursday Thoughts? Link up and let us know!
What is it about babies that makes us want to do weird things to their hair?
Maybe it’s because they are adorable no matter what their hair looks like?
When you are a baby you really can’t have a bad hair day….because you are just too stinking cute!
I have often said that Erma Bombeck was my second mother, even though she and I never met. I say that because my mom loved her and often quoted her or shared something with me that Erma had written. Most everything Erma wrote was funny but the few things she shared that were serious have such wisdom in them that you know she was speaking from the heart.
If you are familiar at all with her writings you will recognize what I am about to share. I think it’s very appropriate for Mother’s Day. If you are a mom and perchance you haven’t read this before after you read it take a few moments to think about what she says. It’s some of the best advice this mom of 5 ever received!
IF I HAD MY LIFE TO LIVE OVER
I would have invited friends over to dinner even if the carpet was stained and the sofa faded.
I would have eaten the popcorn in the “good” living room and worried much less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace.
I would have taken the time to listen to my grandfather rambling about his youth.
I would never have insisted the car windows be rolled up on a summer day because my hair had just been teased and sprayed.
I would have burned the pink candle sculped like a rose before it melted
I would have sat on the lawn with my children and not worried about grass stains.
I would have cried and laughed less while watching television, and more
while watching life.
I would have gone to bed when I was sick, instead of pretending the earth would go into a holding pattern if I weren’t there for the day.
I would never have bought anything just because it was practical, wouldn’t show soil or was guaranteed to last a lifetime.
Instead of wishing away nine months of pregnancy, I’d have cherished every moment, realising that the wonderment growing inside me was the only chance in life to assist God in a miracle.
When my kids kissed me impetuously, I would never have said, “Later. Now go get washed up for dinner.”
There would have been more “I love you’s” and more “I’m sorry’s”
. . . but mostly, given another shot at life, I would seize every minute . . . look at it and really see it . . . and never give it back.”
Linking up today at http://apeekintomyparadise.blogspot.com/2013/05/tgif-link-party-2.html
Bloggers from Around the World Series
Howdy everyone, my name is Mandy and I am the proud author of my sewing blog Hong Kong Chic. I am really honored to be a featured blogger on Nana Hood, although I am not a grandmother (if I were, this post would be a little shocking haha), nor am I a mother (yet), but I am very happy to be sharing with you all my story!
My hometown Hong Kong
I was born and raised in Hong Kong, China and I can go on and on about my hometown, but to make a novel short and if you were to take away anything from my story, is that 1. Hong Kong is not Communist, 2. We do not kill baby girls, and 3. We are not all Kung Fu masters. LOL OK OK, that was just me trying to be funny, but to be more serious…
Hong Kong has a land mass of 426 square miles with more than 7 million in population. So how big (or small) is it really? It is 6 times the size of Washington D.C. Of that 426 sq. miles, only 25% of that is developed because hills occupy most of our land. With that in mind, there are roughly 6700 people per square mile, making it the most densely populated area in the world. It became a British colony after the First Opium War (ended in 1842), was briefly occupied by Japan during the Pacific War, and was returned to China’s ruling on July 1, 1997. We, as Hong Kong citizens, have gone through quite a bit of turmoil, but for my generation, it was the uncertainty of our nationality; are we Chinese or are we British?
Summary of My Life
I came from a swimmer family, both my parents are good swimmers, so I joined a swim club and started training everyday, 3 hours a day when I was 11. I started competing among other teams, and among high schools, won a quite a few medals and trophies. About one year into my training, a former Australian Olympic champion started training me to be drafted into the Hong Kong Olympic team, it was very exciting but stressful. I was merely a 12-year-old and did not want to lose my social life. I quit after only a few weeks of intense training. Looking back, I should have stayed and at least try it out, but there is no time for regrets now.
Growing up in Hong Kong sure was fun but I realized I was not like everyone else. For one, I was athletic, never into beauty products or hair styles or fashion, cannot play one single musical instrument, loved working with tools, and was pretty tech savvy. But I was not a very good student, never got really good grades, except for English (that should’ve been a sign). I did not fit into the stereo typical Asian mold, so when I was 15, my parents sent me to England for the summer to learn English and to experience something different. I loved it! Then the next summer, I went to New Hampshire, Seattle was next, then it was Oklahoma for a whole year. I eventually went to college in Oklahoma. My college life in Oklahoma is another novel so I won’t bore you with it today.
The Love Story
During my second semester in college, I signed up for a Humanities Class, which was taking a trip to France for spring break. The day of departure, a friend gave me a ride to the airport and we were talking at the gate (when security was not an issue yet), a boy walked up to us, who happened to have gone to high school with my friend, introduced himself to me, was taking the same trip with me, got seated next to me on our flight, and with whom I fell in love and married 8 years later. Such a romantic story right? It never gets old telling this story. We do not have children yet, but we do have one cute dog named Bella, she is a Lab mix and she is 5 years old. She can do many tricks, her most recent one is balancing a treat on her nose and then catching it in midair.
Finding My Passion
I became a wife in 2008 and my hubby did not force me to work, so I stayed home and became a domestic goddess. But it was a bit boring doing chores day after day. One day after a hail storm, I met a neighbor who happens to sew. From there I learned how to operate a sewing machine and bought myself a sewing machine and started sewing. It has been exactly 3 years this month since I started sewing. I have always kept a journal, so I figured I should keep a sewing journal and that’s how I started blogging. Since then, I have created lots of things, most beginner stuff, but lately, I have been info upcycling. Using old jeans or military uniforms to create something entirely different is very satisfying for me knowing that I am helping our mother earth one seam at a time! Not only do I sew, I also repurpose household items such as laundry detergent bottles, turning them into something else. Plus, I have been renovating our 1960′s house. Everything I do, I try to do it green, from organic gardening to hang drying clothes on clothes lines. I believe every bit helps.
Blogging in Hong Kong
The blogging community in Hong Kong is different in a sense that they mostly blog about fashion, entertainment, or politics, seldom do I come across a sewing blog. Sewing isn’t a very popular hobby for people in Hong Kong, they are busy, too busy. I remember when I had a job in HK, I worked 6 days a week, from 9am to 10pm and sometimes past midnight. With that said, when people have time to stop, they rather sleep. Plus, people in Hong Kong micro-blog much more than really writing an article, again, because they are too busy.
Last but not least, I am so blessed to still have my heroes with me, my parents. NO ONE will ever replace them in my heart. I was just like any teenager, thinking them as annoying, but that soon changed once I had to be on my own, taking care of myself, no more just yelling out “mom, did you do my laundry?” I now call them everyday (since I live in the US and they live in Hong Kong), I miss them soooo much that it hurts. I am getting teary eyed just typing this. I want you all to know that no matter how much you think your parents (for lack of a better word) suck, they actually are the only ones who love you unconditionally, so treasure them as long as you can before it’s too late.
From Teresa- Thank you, Mandy, for sharing your story with us! I love reading about other cultures and other people, don’t you? If you or someone you know is from a country other than the U.S. I’d love for you to tell us about your country. Just message me here and I’ll get in touch! Thanks again, Mandy!
You can meet Mandy at the following places….