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A Super Bowl Pool for a Good Cause

24 Jan

As you probably know, I am currently fundraising for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society while I train to run the Surf City Half Marathon in Huntington Beach.  My race falls on Super Bowl Sunday, so I will run in the morning and then get to eat and relax the rest of the day while watching the game – or maybe just the commercials.  In an effort to finish up my fundraising and meet my goal, I am hosting a Super Bowl Block Pool.  It is $10 per square and half of the proceeds will go to LLS.  The other half of the proceeds will be awarded as prizes.

So what do you say?  Do you want to help out a good cause and have the chance to win a little cash as well?  If you are interested in buying a square, or 5, leave me a note in the comments.


I Need Help

18 Jan

I need help in so many ways these days.  As I wrote yesterday, I need help letting go and figuring out where my life is to go in the future.  I am trying to be grateful for what I have, trying not to get overwhelmed, and trying to have faith.

I also need help with my fundraising for Team in Training.  My race is in three weeks and I am supposed to have all of my fundraising completed by this week.  I was trying to be considerate of the demands of people during the holidays, so I didn’t send out as many requests as I should.  Now I am trying to do everything I can to finish my fundraising, but I am still struggling.  I have tried offering incentives for donations – a drawing for a custom knit item made by me.  I have let people know about a comedy show at the Brea Improv at the end of the month – buying tickets to the show will result in a donation to my fundraising.  I am also organizing Super Bowl block pools to try to raise money.  Nothing seems to be working for me now though.  I don’t know what else to do.  If anyone has any suggestions, please let me know.  I could really use your help.

Here is something I wrote last night when I sent out another email to everyone I know hoping for support:

I truly believe in this cause, and in addition to losing people to leukemia and lymphoma, I have met people who have survived because of the wonderful things that LLS has done.  In fact, two weeks ago, we had an all team practice where the marathon, triathlon, and cycle teams from Orange County and the Inland Empire met together for our Saturday morning practice.  Before we went out for our training, we had the pleasure of hearing from John Gronnel, who just recently finished his second battle with lymphoma thanks to LLS.  If you want to understand how inspirational this program is and how wonderful it makes you feel to help out, just watch this video –

We run in honor of those who are currently fighting the disease and in memory of those we have lost.  Help me support LLS so that there can be many more people like John Gronnel who are surviving this battle.

I truly do believe in this cause, and my struggle with fundraising for it is disheartening.  I hope things start to turn around quickly.  This cause is too important for me to fail.

Let’s Get Started

10 Jan

Last week I posted that I wanted to try to publish a post a day in 2011.  Well, I figure Monday – the beginning of the week – is a good time to get started.  Now the only problem is figuring out something to write about.

Over the past year I have taught myself to knit and crochet, which has provided me an outlet for creativity as well as a way to help me relieve stress.  I hope that writing more often will help me to feel more creative also.

I knit quite a few gifts for Christmas, so I guess I will show a few of them off to display my creativity.

One of my favorite gifts was a hat I knit for my brother who lives in Massachusetts.  It was a little bit silly and crazy, but it was the perfect gift for him.  Luckily, he seems to love it.  He sent me this picture of him with my nephew, who apparently also got a fun hat for Christmas.

My brother in his custom knit hat with my nephew in a sock monkey hat.

Unfortunately in that picture you can’t see all of the fun details.  First, I knit the hat in an orange and white yarn that I got at a yarn swap, and it ended up creating a pretty cool striping pattern.  Then, the ear cover parts are actually detachable.  Each piece has 3 buttons that connect it to the hat.  The best part was that I found fun pig buttons and I used one on each side as a little nod to a joke my brother and I have had between us for years.  Here are some more pictures that show off the details of the hat.

See the Piggie button?

One of the other nice pieces that I finished for Christmas was a scarf for my brother’s girlfriend.  At the same yarn swap where I got the yarn for the hat, I got some really beautiful yarn and knew I wanted to use it for a scarf.  The scarf was actually made with two yarns held together – Eucool, a eucalyptus/wool blend, and an Angora/wool blend.  I thought this combination would make a nice warm scarf for the East Coast winter.  I knit an easy, open lace pattern and I was pleased with the result.  Unfortunately, the pictures don’t do justice to the color.

So those are a few of my recent projects.  I have more to show off and a number waiting to be finished.  I will continue to share.

As part of my fundraising (I need your help) for my current TNT training (my race is in 4 weeks), I am doing a drawing for everyone who donates to receive a custom knit item.  I will provide the winner with a choice of patterns and then will complete the item in their desired color.  If you are interested in contributing to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and getting a chance to win a custom knit item, please make a donation on my fundraising page.

I guess that will suffice for my first post in my post a day challenge.  Tomorrow is my birthday, so I already know my topic.

Dinner Out for a Good Cause!

13 Sep

For everyone in the Orange County area, I have a great, fun way for you to help support my fundraising.  Along with a few of the other women training with me, we are having a fun fundraiser tomorrow night – Tuesday, September 14, 2010.

Join me out for dinner tomorrow night at Johnny Rockets at The District in Tustin between 5-8pm.  All you have to do is use the flyer below when you order your food.  20% of the sales made during that time will be donated back to support my fundraising efforts.

Since you are eating out for a good cause, you can enjoy your burger, fries, and shakes without any guilt!  I hope you will join us.


And if you can’t make it tomorrow night, but still want to support my cause, please visit My Fundraising Page!

Third Group Run

16 Aug

Saturday morning I finished my third group training run.  It was another early morning at Heritage Park in Irvine.  After announcements and a warm up, we had another clinic.  This week the clinic was on core strength.  A strong core can help you when running long distances.  So I think my pilates practice will definitely help me as the training continues.  After some instruction on core exercises, it was time for our training run.  This week it was a timed running – 30 minutes out then turn around and run the 30 minutes back.  I continued to run at 4-1 intervals with a few other ladies.  It was a nice cool and overcast morning, so the run went pretty well.  My total mileage for the run came in at just under 5-miles and my pace was pretty consistent with what I have been running lately – about 12:30 to 13:00 per mile.  All in all it was a good run.

And speaking of pilates, I did get back into it last week.  I had a session on Friday afternoon, and it felt good to start my practice again.  My body was definitely tight after a month off, but I could feel things start to open up and loosen throughout the session.  My body felt much better after I was done.  Then I woke up on Saturday morning and was reminded of the soreness that comes from working muscles that haven’t been used recently.  Luckily the soreness didn’t bother me while running, but it was another reminder that I need to keep up a regular pilates schedule.  I am hoping to get it in about twice a week throughout the rest of my half marathon training.

My fundraising has slowed lately, but I have surpassed the $2000 mark.  However, I still have a long way to go to reach my goal.  If you haven’t taken a minute to donate yet, please visit My Fundraising Page to make your tax-deductible donation.  Any amount of support is greatly appreciated and helps an amazing organization.  For those who have already donated, or for anyone who wants to support me in another way, please pass along my blog and fundraising page to your family and friends.  Unfortunately, almost everyone has been touched by blood cancers in some way, and support of my goal is an easy way to fight back.

One way to define team is:

Together Everyone Accomplishes More

You are all part of my team in this journey!  It is only with your help  and support that I will accomplish my goal and that the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society will continue to find ways to fight blood cancers.

Thank you all!  Go Team!

4 Miles Done!

11 Aug

I have now completed my second group training run.  However, before I got to the 4-mile run on Saturday, August 7th, I had to keep up with my maintenance runs during the week.  I met a girl through the running meetup group that I have joined who lives nearby in Laguna Beach.  She was looking for someone to run with in the mornings, so we have started running Monday, Wednesday, and Friday morning.  Right now we are running an easy 2-mile route through Laguna at 4-1 intervals – running for 4 minutes, walking for 1 minute.  Our route has some hills which are good training and keep the run challenging for now.  We are slowly improving our pace each day.  Having a partner to run with during the week keeps me motivated to get the runs in.  I know she is waiting for me down the street, so I have to get my butt out of bed and get moving.

I already told you that we received training shirts from TNT that they want us to wear to our group training runs.  They also asked us to get creative and put our names on the shirts.  At first I was just going to go the sharpie route, but last week I got creative.  After a quick stop at Michael’s, I pulled out the iron and personalized my shirt with my name on the front and a little Woohoo! excitement on the back.  I will try to get a picture of me in my shirt at m run this weekend so I can show you my craftiness.

So Saturday morning was our second group training run and our second clinic.  We actually had two clinics on Saturday – one on running form and one on stretching.  Both clinics were informative and will hopefully help me make it through the season injury free.

After we finished the clinics, we went out for our out and back 4-mile run.  I decided to stay with the 4-1 intervals I had run during the week.  My mentor Jacqueline and teammate Britney ran the route with me.  It was nice because we were able to talk and get to know each other throughout the run.  We ran through a residential area in Irvine, which included a lake and some ducks enjoying the early morning.  The weather was overcast and cool – perfect for running.  I finished the 4 miles in about 50 minutes, which puts me at about a 12:30 pace.  I am pretty happy with my pace at this point and think that with consistent training, I will be able to bring it down a little before race day.

I am keeping up my weekday maintenance runs this week, and I am also getting in a pilates session.  I have missed pilates for the past month and think it will be good to get back into it on a regular schedule.  Now, i just need to figure out what that schedule will be.  I do expect to be sore the day after my pilates session, since it has been so long since I’ve had a session.  But I think it will be a good balance to my running.

Thank you everyone who has donated to my goal.  I have raised just under $2000 and am still working toward my goal.  You are all amazing and give me the motivation to continue.  Thank you!

Prudence Noon

Hakim Elaby

Roger Newhall

George Newhall

Ken Nelson & Tom Simmons

Skip Newhall

Elaine Lawson

Svend Peulicke

Anthony Newhall

Pilates Hound/Amy Truong

Mark Chung

Peggie Thomas

Bana Hilal

Catherine Peatross

Brian Peulicke

Katie Haven

Robert Cormier

S A Electric Inc

Natalie Verbeck

Doug Long

Bonnie Brown

Cindy Prewitt

Barbara Klein-Robuck

Paul Gadebusch

Jeffrey Jones

Patrick Scott

John Moreiko

Nancy Long

Gail Sahara

Jean Brotherton

Jacqueline Peraza

Patrick Freeman

Deana Pink

Walter Semizorov

Miriam Kranser

Thank you everyone for your support.  Please share My Fundraising Page with your family and friends so that they can contribute to my goal as well.

My mentor is working to plan a group fundraiser at a local restaurant soon, and I will let you all know the details as soon as they are set so you can spread the word and help us raise money while having dinner out.

You all are the best.  Go Team!

Training Begins

10 Aug

So I am quite late with this posting, but life has been crazy lately.  Saturday, July 31st was our first group training run.  I spent the day before the run moving so I was pretty tired and sore at 6am on Saturday when I had to get up.  Our first month of the group training runs all includes clinics on different aspects running and training.  The clinic on our first training day was the shoe clinic.  We met at a local running store and learned about the different types of shoes available and how they can help your running form.  Then it was time to run.

The first group run was an easy 2-mile run – one mile out and one mile back.  I tried to go out easy and not start off too fast.  I actually ran a pretty steady pace.  And, I ran straight through the full 2 miles.  The only time I stopped was waiting for a light to cross the street.  I finished those 2 miles in 25 minutes, and I was pretty proud of myself.  It was a good start to the group training.

After the run, in addition to the water and snacks they had for us, we had the opportunity to be professionally fit for proper running shoes.  Since I still had moving to finish, I couldn’t stay for that fitting, but I plan to head back to the store for a fitting soon.

I was excited to get started with the official training and to start meeting some of the other people who I will be running with this season.  It is really amazing to see so many people who are working toward the same goals – running a 1/2 marathon and raising money to help eradicate blood cancers.

I want to thank everyone who has donated in support of my goal.  I am about one-third of the way to my goal.  Your support keeps me running.  If you haven’t donated yet, please visit My Fundraising Page and give what you can.  I would also appreciate you passing along my blog to your friends so they can support my goal as well.

Thank you all!

Go Team!


27 Jul

So Saturday morning was the kickoff party for winter training season with Team in Training.  Woohoo!  It was great to see all the people who are taking on the challenge of a half marathon or sprint triathlon and raising money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society at the same time.  I met some of the people who will be training with me for the half marathon.  I will meet everyone this coming Saturday when the training really gets started.

At the kickoff party, I got my training shirt (picture to follow soon) and training schedule for the first month of training.  The program really is set up to help non-runners achieve the goal of completing their first endurance event.  I think I may have a little advantage, as far as knowing what to expect from the training and having started running a little bit, so that I will hopefully be able to improve my pace through this process.  According to my schedule, this week I am just supposed to get out for a 20 minute run or walk 3 times before Saturday’s 2-mile group run.  I still plan to run at the beach Tuesday night with the new running group I have found, but I will make sure to get in at least 20 minutes on two other days.

On Saturday I also met my running coach Paul and my mentor Jacqueline.  Paul was leaving after the party to head up to San Francisco to run the SF Marathon on Sunday morning.  Jacqueline, my mentor, has trained with the program before and this year is here to help us with our fundraising, training, and any other issues we may have in the program.  She seems really nice and is very enthusiastic about helping us.  She was already working to come up with a group fundraiser that we could all do together.  I’ll be sure to let you know about that as soon as it is set.

Vicki, the campaign manager for the 1/2 marathon training team in Orange County ran the kickoff party and introduced us to all the wonderful staff members who will be helping us through this process.  We were also reminded that 75% of the money raised through the TNT program goes directly to the mission of the LLS and will directly help those who are suffering in some way.  She also introduced our honored teammates.  Unfortunately, the honored teammate for the OC marathon team was unable to attend the kickoff because he is preparing for a stem cell transplant.  I look forward to meeting him soon and learning more about him so that I can share it with you.  We did get to hear from the honored teammate for the triathlon team.  She is a mother of 3 daughters who was diagnosed 3 years ago with leukemia.  She had a bone marrow transplant and is now in remission.  She will actually be training with the triathlon team, and will compete on the third anniversary of her transplant procedure.  Her story was amazingly inspiring and reminded me that my life is not as bad as it feels sometimes.  One thing she said that has stayed with me and I think will help me through this journey is that she is doing this because she can.

I run because I can and I will run for those who can’t!

I also have to say Woohoo! and thank you to everyone who has donated to support my goal.  Over the weekend I surpassed $1000 in fundraising and am now over a quarter of the way to reaching my goal.  I want to thank the following people who have made donations since my last post:

Hakim Elaby

Ken Nelson

Tom Simmons

Skip Newhall

Elaine Lawson

Roger Newhall

Amy Truong – Pilates Hound

Mark Chung

Peggie Tomas

Bana Hilal

Katie Haven

Bonnie Brown

Cindy Prewitt

Barbara Klein-Robuck

Paul Gadebusch

Jeff Jones

Patrick Scott

John Moreiko

You are all motivating me to reach my goal and you are helping millions of people by supporting the LLS and their mission.  If you haven’t had a chance yet, please visit my fundraising page to make a donation.  You are all part of my team and I truly appreciate your support.

Go TEAM!  WooHoo!

Help me reach my goal

21 Jul

So, it’s been a week since I started my fundraising and running again.  Things are progressing … just a little more slowly than I would hope in both the fundraising and running.  I ran again last night with the local running group.  It was another good run and I picked up my pace a little bit.  The only problem was that I had a cramp in my side through most of the run.  I am still trying to figure out whether it was because I didn’t drink enough water yesterday or because I haven’t found my breathing yet.  Hopefully, next Tuesday night’s run will go better.  I still have a little over a week until training officially begins, so at least I will have gotten in a few runs to prepare myself before then.

The fundraising has also started.  It is progressing steadily.  I am hoping to raise at $1000 of my $5000 goal by this weekend, so I still need your help.  Please visit my Fundraising Page to make a donation.  Don’t forget it is tax-deductible and you will be supporting the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s mission to cure blood cancers.

I would like to send a huge THANK YOU out to those people who have graciously supported me so far:

Jean Brotherton

Gail Sahara

Brian Peulicke – my big brother!

Catherine Peatross – the daughter of Charles Whitesell, one of the people in whose memory I am running

Tony Newhall

Svend Peulicke – I love you daddy!

Nancy Long – she’s run this Nike Women’s Marathon twice before

Your support for my goals and for the mission of the LLS is truly inspiring and will help me to finish this journey.  I also want to thank those who have indicated that they will be donating.  I will happily accept your donation in any form, but please consider making your donation online at my fundraising page, as it will add to my total and you will receive an emailed receipt for your donation immediately.

This weekend is the kickoff celebration for the Team in Training winter program.  I will be getting my training schedule, meeting my coach and mentor, and also meeting our honored teammate.  I look forward to telling you all about these wonderful people this weekend.  They are going to be providing me the physical support to improve my running while you all offer me the mental support to keep going toward my goals.

I am also working on posts to tell you all about Monsignor McGinn and Charles Whitesell, the two people in whose memory I am fundraising and running this race.  Monsignor McGinn was my parish priest growing up.  He lost his battle with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma almost 13 years ago.  Charles Whitesell was the attorney who hired me to work at his firm 6 years ago when I moved back to California from Washington, DC.  We lost Charles to leukemia 4 years ago. I will tell you more about these two wonderful men soon.

For a little more information about the Team in Training program and all the wonderful work they have done to help LLS over the past 22 years, watch this video from their 20th Anniversary year in 2008.

Thank you again for all your support!  Please keep coming back to follow my progress and feel free to engage with me in the comments below.  You are all part of my team.


And so I begin

13 Jul

So today I began running and fundraising in earnest.

I sent out email requests and posted links on every social networking site on which I have an account.  I received my first donation – Thank You Jean Brotherton! There will be something special coming your way as the first one to make a donation toward my goal.  I hope there will be more donations soon.  The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) is an amazing organization and their mission to find a cure for blood cancers is so important.  In fact, the Team in Training program is one of the best fundraising programs in the country, with approximately 75% of the funds raised going directly to LLS to support their mission.

I appreciate any support you can give me to reach my goal.  Please visit my Fundraising Page to make a tax-deductible donation.

This evening I also started running again.  I found a local running group on  They do a run every Tuesday evening in Corona Del Mar.  It was a great run along the bluff above the beach and the scenery was absolutely beautiful.  I took it nice and easy, walking for portions of the 3 miles, just to get myself back into the swing of things.  I met some really nice, supportive people.  I think I have found my Tuesday training run for the duration of this journey and beyond.

It felt good to get out there tonight and know that I was running for a great cause.  And it didn’t hurt that we finally were rid of the June Gloom today and had a beautiful, sunny summer beach day.

Now I think I will spend a little time knitting before heading off to bed.

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