Friday, July 31, 2015

# 292 Join Me

Trust me, this will not be a prickly experience. Reiki Kelly posing by a cacti.
At the Firefly in Oregon getting ready for a reiki session.  Come join us to learn more about this amazing mind and body experience.  8-4 today with all money going to METAvivor.  One dollar a minute and you can spend as much or as little time as you like.

See you there or be square! (Definitely throw back vocabulary from the '60's). Or if you can't get there, go to Donate today!  She will send you her healing vibes.

Thanks for reading # 292 of 7777.

#291 It Was an AHA Moment

We are our own worst critics.  I look at this video and cringe on how I was really really trying to be articulate and failed or wondering where the profound words were when I needed them.  As that adorable song says--Let It Go, Let It Go...

 The AHA moment was somewhat of a fluke happening.  Dena from Three Gaits received the call to share her fascinating story about horses and people with disabilities and she then passed my name on as someone else with a cause. Thanks, Dena (I think).

Rob and I traipsed down to the video trailer and I mumbled through my narrative about metastatic breast cancer, swimming and blah blah blah.  Not sure what happens next if they select one for their commercial or if they sell the bunch to some government agency that is in to torture.  "If you think solitary confinement is painful, watch this."

Watch this for a good laugh...or not--My AHA moment

Thanks for reading # 291 of 7777.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

# 290 You Won't Want To Miss This

The talented Kelly Sholtz has offered her services to support METAvivor with what she does best--Reiki. For several months I have been fortunate to experience the healing and comfort from her presence and it is worth every moment spent with her.  This is a wonderful opportunity to find out what Reiki is all about and contribute to a cause close to my heart--finding a cure for metastatic breast cancer.  She, along with a few other practitioners, will be there to let you try out this practice for 5--10--30 minutes or for whatever time you want for a dollar a minute.  One dollar per minute is all and 100% of the proceeds goes directly to METAvivor which then gives 100% of its donations to research.  It is a win-win situation.

Please join us (I'll be hanging out there in the morning) at the Firefly from 8-4 on Saturday, August 1st.  I am betting you will be pleasantly surprised at how you feel both inside and out!

A day of Reiki for METAvivor. My friend Mary was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012, believing she was done with Cancer, she found out 20 months later that the Cancer had metastasized. Mary is swimming in an effort to raise awareness and badly needed research money for METAvivor. You can check out Mary's swimming endeavors and METAvivor here:
I'm excited to invite you to a day of Reiki at the Firefly Coffeehouse. Reiki promotes deep relaxation and a sense of physical and mental well being. Reiki works in conjunction with medical and therapeutic treatment to promote recovery and relieve the symptoms of side effects from standard medical treatments. For $1/minute you can experience the benefits of Reiki and help Mary too! All monies raised will be donated to METAvivor.

"Reiki is a natural, simple, safe, effective healing system that uses spiritually guided universal energy, the energy which permeates our entire universe and all living things. This energy is channeled through the hands of the practitioner into the body and aura of the receiver. It is an ancient healing system that has been used for thousands of years and was rediscovered by Dr Mikao Usui. Reiki is a Japanese term meaning universal energy, or spiritually guided universal energy, because it is the divine consciousness, the All-knowing that guides this life force. Because of this, Reiki can also be sent to someone who is not physically present, this is called distance healing. It can also be used on animals and plants. During a Reiki session, the person receiving Reiki lies or sits, fully clothed, while the practitioner places his hands lightly on or a few inches over the person's head and body. Reiki opens the mind and spirit to the causes of disease and pain and the necessity for taking responsibility for one's life. Reiki heals on all levels: physical, mental, emotional and spiritual to help return the body to its natural perfect state. It increases spiritual awareness and progress and is a means for each person to access the richness of his soul and discover his own great potential. Reiki is not a system of religious beliefs." 

Thanks for reading # 290 of 7777.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

#289 No Croc Will Get Me

A little African influence today.  Each quote reminds me of my constant and steady supporters on this wild ride with cancer. I do believe they would cross the river by my side so a croc wouldn't eat me.  That's what it feels like to have them in my life.

A village in Togo--"Many hands..."

African Quotes on Unity and Community

  • Unity is strength, division is weakness. ~ Swahili proverb
  • Sticks in a bundle are unbreakable. ~ Bondei proverb
  • It takes a village to raise a child. ~ African proverb
  • Cross the river in a crowd and the crocodile won’t eat you. ~ African proverb
  • Many hands make light work. ~ Haya (Tanzania) proverb
  • Where there are many, nothing goes wrong. ~ Swahili proverb
  • Two ants do not fail to pull one grasshopper. ~ Tanzanian proverb
  • A single bracelet does not jingle. ~ Congolese proverb
  • A single stick may smoke, but it will not burn. ~ African proverb
  • If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. ~ African proverb

Thanks for reading # 289 of 7777.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

#288 The Giggling Auntie

An aunt grows more treasured as time goes by.” 
Author Unknown

Aunt Marie (second one on left)

A visit to my beloved Aunt Marie is on the docket for today.  She is my mother's youngest sister and is the spitting image of her in both looks and personality which makes her even more cherished to be around.  Being exactly 19 years three months and nine days older than me she acts more like a fun loving sister than the sophisticated aunt that we proclaim her to be.   Her sense of humor is outrageous with giggles engulfing the house whenever she is around.  

The afternoon will be spent catching up on all the details of the extended family members as she has been appointed the historian and present recorder of all our tribal news.  Every clan needs someone to keep track of us as we are sprawled from coast to coast and beyond and, fortunately for us, she tends to be a master at details.  

If you are lucky enough to have an aunt in your life to compare stories, learn the history of the family or just share a good chuckle consider yourself a lottery winner.  Aunt Marie is our treasure and I'm looking forward to having her show us another wild and crazy good time today. Beware, we could experience one of those laughable moments that causes tears to run down our legs.

Thanks for reading # 288 of 7777.

Monday, July 27, 2015

#287 Hopeful Answers

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center president Dr. Gary Gilliland speaks at the Life Science Innovation Northwest conference in Seattle.

MetsMonday and today's blog is brought to you by the Fred Hutch Cancer Research Center in Seattle.
Hopeful answers to our questions.

Go to: Fred Hutch Cancer Research Center

I'm also swimming tonight at Crooked Lake in Delton, Michigan.  Join in on the fun!

Thanks for reading #287 of 7777.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

#286 Here Fishy Fishy Fishy

Yep, that's me trying to find a trout lurking under the waters of this quiet little stream.  It was approaching dusk which should have been the perfect time for catching something, but alas, not one decided to latch on and grab a bite to eat.

It gave me time to work on my cast--wait on the back swing (or whatever they call it) and then thrust it towards the bubbles leisurely drifting by.  No luck, not even my begging of, "Here fishy fishy fishy" spurred them on to take a nibble.  Dogs or cats they are not.  Apparently fish do not bite on command so I returned with an empty satchel but with a greater appreciation of fisherman Rob when he arrives home trout-less.

Slowly I am getting the hang of this sport but have found the peacefulness of fishing can be interrupted when the mosquitoes arrive... and then it is all abuzz with the noises of --swat, smack, get me out of here-- sounds that drive this fisherwoman back to the protective confines of her car.

Thanks for reading # 286 of 7777.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

#285 A Mountain View

A Tuscan sunset and a poem for your reading and viewing pleasure.  Thank you David for sharing your poetic wisdom and your brilliance behind the lens of a camera.
Photo by David Sandgrund

By David Sangrund 
 Mountains change color as day ends
                 The fleeting glance of the valley sometimes
                              darkness against light

Thanks for reading # 285 of 7777.

Friday, July 24, 2015

#284 Eat, Live or Donate

Put the gloom and doom of the news aside for today and enjoy this light yummy summer salad that will put a smile on your taste buds.

Blueberry, Strawberry and Jicama Salad

Now go out and relish this beautiful summer day...or go to my web page and

Thanks for reading # 284 of 7777.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

# 283 It Bit You Where?

Oh great.  According to the Cal Tech researcher, it's very difficult to escape mosquitoes.  I could have told him that today after spending less than a nano second in my garden when the little monsters crept out and sucked my blood.  Who likes these guys and why do they insist on ruining the party? The article below gives an explanation on how they find food but an unrealistic report on how to avoid being their breakfast, lunch or dinner.

How do mosquitoes find food? First, they smell you, scientists say
New research shows that mosquitoes find targets by following the scent of the air we exhale, then using sight and body heat sensors to close in.
By Sarah Caspari, Staff writer JULY 17, 2015

To investigate how mosquitoes home in on their targets, biologists from the University of Washington and the California Institute of Technology tracked them tracking us. The researchers found that mosquitoes rely on a variety of senses to find their meals in a process they divided into stages: first they pick up a scent, then they follow a visual cue, and once they are close enough to the target they sense its body heat.

The scent that alerts mosquitoes to the proximity of a potential target is not that of blood, but of carbon dioxide, the gas we exhale. Mosquitoes can smell the gas from as far as 30 feet away, University of Washington researcher and co-author on the paper Jeff Riffell explained in a news release.

Carbon dioxide is the best signal for a warm-blooded animal, and they can sense that from up to 30 feet away – quite a distance,” Mr. Riffell said. “And then they start using vision and other body odors to discriminate whether we’re a dog or a deer or a cow or a human. That may be how they discriminate among potential blood hosts.”

In the study, mosquitoes were put in a wind tunnel that was plain and empty, except for a black dot on the floor to serve as a visual stimulus. The introduction of carbon dioxide into the tunnel triggered the mosquitoes’ instinct to search visually for food, Riffel said.

“When we gave them the odor stimulus, all of the sudden they were attracted to this black dot,” said Riffell. “It’s almost like the carbon dioxide gas turned on the visual stimulus for the mosquitoes to go to this black dot.”

Adding heat to the dot increased the mosquitoes’ attraction to it, Riffel said. CalTech researcher and first author on the paper Floris Van Breugel told the BBC that to evade mosquitoes’ “annoyingly robust” senses, you would have to “capture all the CO2 that you were breathing out,” dress so you were “visually camouflaged,” and use another person as a distraction.

"The unfortunate conclusion is that it's very difficult to escape mosquitoes,” he said.

From the Christian Monitor

Thanks for reading # 283 of 7777.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

#282 One More...or Not

More swim pictures.  They tend to look all the same even though each is a completely unique and different experience so bear with me as I show once again the latest plunge.

Half way there

Dedicated to Bri

With four news stations looking for a story, I was overwhelmed with the papaparrazi floating around me as I stepped out of the water.  One news reporter sidled up beside me in a canoe paddled by my friend, Deb.  Nothing like trying to look like a master swimmer with a camera stuck in your face.  A bit discerning but, hey, if this will bring in the cash and find a cure, I will tolerate the invasion of my swimming space.

Lake Nokomis TV News

No new swims until next week so a bit of a reprieve from ubiquitous swim photos--they've become more prevalent than adorable kitty pictures on the internet.

For more pictures and news coverage, go to my One Woman Many Lakes Facebook page.

Thanks for reading # 282 of 7777.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

#281 Minnesota Swim

 “Swimming is simply moving meditation.” 

Swim # 14 will be the stage for quiet meditation today as I reflect on the 155,000 of us living with this disease. As my friend, Heather, says, "Research is our only hope."  

Donate today at One Woman, Many Lakes

Thanks for reading # 281 of 7777.

Monday, July 20, 2015

#280 One More Voice

Another MetsMonday.  They keep on coming and I will not stop the rants know when I will stop the rants.  That four letter word--CURE.  That's when I will hang up this gig.

It looks like I am not the only one ranting.  Click and read the informative article below to see why the metsters will not be silenced.


Thanks for reading #280 of 7777.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

#279 The Awe-Inspiring Heather

My friend, Heather, a mets sister.

  Sometimes--really most times--cancer makes me mad and frustrated and angry at the world that this has to be part of our every day lives.  Then along comes Heather, a shining star if there ever was one.  She has taken on this disease with as much grace and dignity as it allows and she does it with a beautiful smile on her face (and a few swear words under her breath).  While we both agree it sucks living this hell, she has embraced life and reveled in it for whatever amount of time she has on this earth. Her story continues to make an enormous impact on me and, I'm sure, gazillions of others.

Recently the local television station featured her in a segment on what she is doing for her daughter.  Get your kleenexes ready while tears will run down your face as you grab your own children and hug them with all your might.  Grace and dignity--that's what she is all about and what she has taught the rest of us.

Click here for the NBC 15 News story--Heather's story

For more about Heather, go to and read about her amazing strength in the "Our Stories" tab; and while you are there, donate to help her and the 155,000 of us living with this disease.

Thanks for reading # 279 of 7777.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

#278 Minneapolis, Here I Come

It's time to move this dog and pony show of swimming on to another state.  Minnesota, land of 10,000 lakes, here I come!

Check out Lake Nokomis in Minneapolis on Tuesday, July 21st at 9:00 AM as I splash my way from one shore to the other.  There will be a few swimmers joining in on the fun so if you are in the area, come on down.  Spectators and kayakers are always welcome.

Hopefully word is spreading about MBC and the money will start rolling in from this new location.  That is what it is all about--research money and blasting the airways with the message that this disease will not be ignored.

Go to Donate today to support American Cancer Society with their pledge to give all money raised from this swim to metastatic breast cancer research.

Thanks for reading #278 of 7777.

Friday, July 17, 2015

# 277 we are water

I just finished reading Wally Lamb's latest book, we are water, an appropriate title as I progress through the summer of swimming.  A memorable quote grabbed me at the end when the main character philosophizes about the phrase, "We are water".

"All of life came from the ocean, right?  Even us. We flip-flopped out of the water, grew feet and bigger brains, stood up and started walking.  Makes sense, doesn't it?  For the first nine months of our lives, we float underwater.  Then we hit the cold air, the glaring light of the day, and start crying salty tears. Begin the lifelong challenging of trying to figure out why we're here, what it all means."

 I love Wally Lamb books so read this one as he expands on the unique character developments and writes his typical dysfunctional family storyline.

Thanks for reading # 277 of 7777.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

# 276 Take the Leap

Are you swimming?  The fundraiser at the Oregon pool is in full swing (swim) mode.  Join us by doing laps at your own pool and then record the totals in Oregon.  Find out how to do this by going to:
Oregon pool fund raiser

It's fun, a good work out and your donations will save lives.

Thanks for swimming and reading # 276 of 7777.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

#275 Mittens, A Butter Knife and Guts

Blog writing...every day...for 7777 days.  What the heck was I thinking? The task of performing a self appendectomy with a butter knife while wearing mittens covered with glue is the kind of feeling that swoops over me when the words are stuck.  An unpleasant visual to ponder.

When I am attacked with a loss of ideas I have gone to various blogs--one of the suggestions from a workshop--to get inspired.  Quite frankly it depresses me.  These people are phenomenal writers with words flowing effortlessly out of their computers to the masses and I wonder, "How do they do that"?  I'd like to think my blogs are sometimes entertaining, a bit informative but, realistically...  This is where the writer's block hits me in the head and says, "Please stop now before anyone gets hurt".


Someone writes describing how my blog has brightened her day or a Facebook messager explains how she can now better relate to her mother's cancer.  Notes have appeared via internet or face to face expressing thanks for the education on MBC.

Okey dokey then...

Maybe reconsideration is in order so I will remove the mittens, put down the knife and hold off  detaching the appendix with a declaration that masterful writing may not be my forte but possibly sharing a piece of me to offer comfort or educate about MBC will be my solace when the writer's block hits.

So, I am back.  And that is all I have to say.

Thanks for reading # 275 of 7777.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

# 274 Ahhh!

Great day yesterday to complete the last of my trio of swims in the north woods of Wisconsin and Michigan.  Let me just say that the 1.4 mile swim in Duck Lake was another extraordinary event with calm waters and nary a breeze that would complicate swim # 13.  It truly was a relaxing and invigorating swim with the conditions both above and below water that could only be classified as spectacular.

A big thank you to Chris and Diane Hornung for their never-ending support and for bringing along a new set of cheerleaders for my cause.  People are listening and paying attention and that's what it is all about.

Meanwhile, while relaxing after the swim, Hornung's dog cracked me up with his ability to wear a pair of glasses without whipping them off and growling that he is a dog and not our entertainment for the evening.
Thanks Kozmo for helping me with my blog--smart pooch

If you haven't viewed the "cannon shot" video, I would highly recommend it.  I'm not sure if it was one of those moments you had to be there, but it certainly gave all of us a good chuckle at the time (and the need for a change of underwear).
Here it is--  Cannon Shot

And, the Rhinelander News story for Two Sisters--KJFW-12 News release

Thanks for reading # 274 of 7777.

Monday, July 13, 2015

#273 Loving the Water

Can you handle yet another blog about yesterday's awesome adventure in the water?  Two Sisters was the chosen lake and the designated distant point was a tall tree with an eagle standing watch while I side skirted the nearby loons.  Does this come close to describing the tranquil setting for the day?  You had to be there to truly appreciate what a northern Wisconsin lake offers to the humble gathering of mortals.

A boisterous crowd congregated at the Zuhlke's beautiful beach area as one official looking swimmer and three fun loving noodle toting characters joined me on the trek across the lake.  Also teaming up were the boosterish kayakers, a couple of adept canoeists and a speedy jet boat guarding us against any evil rogue boaters--safety in numbers and it was never an issue on this serene lake.

1.2 miles later and we triumphantly emerged from the waters with one more swim--number 12--under the belt.  My fellow swimmer suggested I make the goal of swimming 64 lakes this year.  Seems pretty lofty but, hmmm, maybe not an outrageous expectation.  Why not?  Swimming equals awareness equals more money for research.  Bring it on, baby.  Swimming 64 lakes for my 64 years--sounds like a trip south may be in order when the temps start to drop.

Stay tuned tomorrow for my third swim in three days today. Don't forget to go to one woman many lakes and donate.

A midway break

Thanks for reading #273 of 7777.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

#272--Swim #11--Check!

Wow!  Is all I have to say about yesterday's 1.6 mile dip in Lake Hasbrook.  No teeny minnow or gigantic walleye came venturing by my toes to take a little nibble, in fact, I never saw a creature nearby in this crystal clear paradise of a lake.  Three swimmers accompanied me with a plethora of trusty kayakers and boaters in the mix paddling along watching out for our safety.  Again, a successful swim with the word about MBC spreading to a fresh group of eager supporters.

Mary and Bob Weber did an extraordinary job mustering the troops with an upcoming newspaper article and informing all the lake's residents of my excursion across their beloved body of water.  First Weber Realty's Foundation Fund plan to match the donations from the swims this weekend so besides the awareness, research monies will increase.  Like the movie, Field of Dreams' famous line, "Build it and they will come", an alternative twist to the saying could be, "Swim it and the funds will follow. " Keep on swimming, keep on donating, keep on keeping on.  Thanks Webers and Lake Hasbrook residents.

Donate today!

Stroke after stroke

Happy swimmers at the end

Thanks for reading # 272 of 7777.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

# 271 Another Swim for the Books

This is it.  Today's swim picture from the deck of this lovely home.  The winds are calm and the temperatures couldn't be better.  Hallelujah!  Swim # 11 for the year will have a perfect day to get across the lake.

More pictures to come.

Thanks for reading #271 of 7777.

Friday, July 10, 2015

#270 Up North

We are heading up to beautiful northern Wisconsin this weekend with a trio of swims on the agenda for the next three days.  Our dear friends, the Webers, invited us to their lovely cottage on Lake Hasbrook and as long as we are there and the temperatures are fine, I'm ready to jump in and get across another body of water.

 Their lake and the nearby Two Sisters are two of the prettiest lakes around and I am sure the seaweed that entangled me in the Madison lakes won't be present to hang from my goggles.  In fact, I'm looking forward to watching the fish swim by me as I will actually be able to see clear to the bottom of these pristine bodies of water.

On Sunday I'll swim Two Sisters and Monday, Duck Lake in the UP.  All this swimming and splashing is brought to you with the hope that the word is spreading about MBC.  Join me in one lake or many.  We're making noise!

Stay tuned for pictures and adventure stories.  Below is the flyer if you are in the area.

Swimming quest across the country to raise research money specifically for fighting terminal breast cancers
Mary Gooze, age 64  from Oregon, Wisconsin is struggling with late stage cancer, “I decided to focus my days doing something that I loved. I plan to swim across as many lakes as possible, bringing awareness and funding to metastatic breast cancer,” said Gooze.  Since the cancer has spread to her bones, there are no other treatments that can cure Gooze. Unfortunately, funding is sparse for research that explores how best to fight late-stage cancer and that’s why Gooze has chosen to literally dive into this fight. Her first swimming campaign of 2015 includes Lake Patagonia in Arizona, Hillsdale Lake in Kansas City, all five lakes in Madison, Wisconsin and now on to northern Wisconsin and Minnesota. 
Come join her in the Northwoods!
July 11, 2015  Hasbrook Lake
  • Start and End:  Public Boat Landing, Hasbrook Lake
  • Please park so boats and trailers are still able to launch
  • Swim will begin and end at the Public Landing
  • Swim begins at 11:00 a.m.
July 12, 2015   Two Sisters Lake
  • Start and End: 7131 N Shore Dr, Lake Tomahawk, WI (Barr/Zuhlke Family dock)
  • Please park along the road and walk down the hill to the dock
  • Swim is across and back on the western basin of Two Sisters Lake. The total distance will be 1.25 mile
  • Swim begins at 11:00 a.m.
Please donate to this important cause.  You can donate online at:  If you would like to have your donation matched by First Weber Realtors, make a check to:  “First Weber Foundation” with “METAvivor” in the memo section and they will send your donation and a match to METAvivor.  

You can swim with her or simply watch and support.  Check out her quest at:

Thanks for reading # 270 of 7777.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

# 269 A Ride on the Wild Side

A quick story today.  Last Saturday was perfect kayaking weather so despite the hours Rob has been spending in our little ducky watching me swim, he was willing to venture out in the boat for a leisurely afternoon of floating down a river.

All was going as planned with this glorious day when all of a sudden a brush up against the shore turned into a scene from Mr. Toad's Wild Ride.  What I recall from this incident was a rocking boat and girly screams coming from Rob (not a bad sound but a high squeal none the less) while I tried to steady the boat figuring a dip into the stream was inevitable.  Luckily one of us managed to keep our wits (that would be me) and managed to secure the almost sinking Titanic.

The cause of all this consternation?  A gigantic (according to Rob) renegade frog decided to jump aboard and land between hubby's legs.  Not only did that cause the rumpus, but the little devil thought its only escape was up Rob's shorts--that's when the screams and the rocking really began.  As I'm trying to stabilize our already tippy kayak, he quickly grabbed the dare devil critter by its leg and flung it back into the water bidding the snoopy little monster good riddance.  What was the amphibian thinking when he took a nose dive into our craft--that there might be a giant worm up those pants?

Thankfully a disaster was averted and the rest of the trip was uneventful, however, for the duration of the ride our eyes constantly scanned the banks for any other harebrained creatures looking for a cheap thrill.

Thanks for reading # 269 of 7777.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

#268 It Wasn't Impossible

phd quotes funny

Our daughter-in-law now has the official PhD insignia behind her name! Her defense was last week and according to her loving husband (my son), she nailed it with a huge hammer.  We are exceptionally proud of her and her dedication to all those years of studying, writing and whatever else this degree involved; and the fact that she never gave up speaks volumes about her character.  Public Health and the rest of us will benefit for years from her knowledge and expertise.

Smart and beautiful!
Congratulations and now on to a much deserved vacation for her.

Thanks for reading #268 of 7777.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

#267 Get Over It

Limitations.  That's what cancer seems to be about as I adjust to this new life with a disease that doesn't seem to care that running or frolicking around are no longer options for me.  I don't like it but to sit around and fret about what I can't do now and what I am missing, well, just "get over it" I tell myself.

 Last winter I discovered Pickle Ball and the joys of racing around a court while slamming a whiffle ball at my opponent.  Mini thrills for anyone who loves a little competition.  Unfortunately, attempting to play this game at the level I love to compete does not bode well with a hip bone that has been compromised by radiation and cancer. Hang up the paddle and...


Move on and find something else to occupy the time and leave the picklers to themselves.  Sidelined again but heck, it could be worse.  I could be playing and get the snot beaten out of me but now with an excuse I can fantasize how I would pummel them all with a slam landing at their feet.  Ouch, guess I'm not quite over it yet.  Working on it.

Cancer, the ever present teacher--instructs us to slow down, alter our attitude and accept what we can not change.

PFFFFFFTTTT! (said with a waving middle finger at cancer).

To help go to donate and swim

Thanks for reading # 267 of 7777.

Monday, July 6, 2015

# 266 #TheTurningChallenge

What do you think?  Shall we do this challenge?  I'm spinning around as I write thinking what I can do.  Join me!

The Turning Challenge



One year ago, when I was 23 years old, I learned that I have metastatic breast cancer that has spread to my sternum, spine, and pelvis. Metastatic cancer is cancer that has spread from its original location to another body part.  It is sometimes called advanced cancer or stage 4 cancer.

I am among the 10% of women who are initially diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. It was the last thing I expected.  Other than being female, I have none of the risk factors for breast cancer:  I am very young, thin, physically active and fit. I have never used any hormonal medications; I don’t smoke, drink, or use drugs; I eat a healthy diet.  Genetic testing indicated I do not carry the breast cancer genes. I was never diagnosed with stage 0, I, II or III breast cancer; but I have metastatic breast cancer.

Metastasis is what makes breast cancer a deadly disease.  It is the leading cause of death in young women with breast cancer. In fact, every day 108 American women die from metastatic breast cancer. This is over 40,000 women each year and this number has held steady for the last 15 years.   If a cure is not found soon, one day it will be me. 

Billions of dollars are raised for breast cancer, but only 2% goes toward research to find a cure for those with metastatic breast cancer.  Most of the money raised is spent on awareness, early detection, and treatments for early stages of breast cancer. Early detection does not guarantee a cure, and being told one has been “successfully” treated” for early stage breast cancer does not mean that one never has to worry about cancer again.  It only means that at present, they cannot see one’s cancer.  Cancer cells can disseminate undetected and then lie dormant for a very long time before they activate.  Thus metastatic breast cancer can occur many years after the patient’s original diagnosis and treatment.

Until a cure is found for metastatic breast cancer, no one with breast cancer can ever be certain they won’t die of breast cancer, even after both breasts have been removed and no cancer is detected following surgery.  Our current technology cannot detect whether very tiny breast cancer stem cells have traveled to a new body part. These cancer cells sometimes begin growing after surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy have been completed.  In fact, this will happen to about 30% of the women who were successfully treated for early stages of breast cancer.  Months, years, or even decades later, they will develop stage 4 breast cancer and die.

It is a possibility that no one wants to talk about.  It is the elephant in every breast cancer patient’s room.

Please help raise awareness and funds for Metastatic Breast Cancer Research by joining me in the Turning Challenge.  Let’s send a message to breast cancer fundraising operations to turn around and look at us Stage 4 patients; we deserve more than 2 percent.

The Turning Challenge can be fun for everyone: both dancers and non-dancers.  All that you have to do is post a video of spinning or rotating in some fashion.  It can be as simple as the Hokie Pokie or as difficult as 32 fouettes.  You can hold a spinning object like a pinwheel or film your pet dog chasing his tail. There are no rules! 

Inspire, entertain, amuse – or just make us smile! Be creative!
Please use #TheTurningChallenge and nominate three or more friends.  If you prefer not to complete the challenge, please make a donation to METAvivor where 100% of your donation will go to metastatic breast cancer research.  You can do this at the following link:  Of course, nothing prevents you from “turning” AND donating to METAvivor!
Help make this a Turning Point for metastatic breast cancer research.
The Turning Point Video:

Thanks for reading # 266 of 7777.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

#265 Oh Please, Honey


Bare bottoms.  I guess if my goal was to have as many "hits" on this blog as I could, bare butts would do it.  Because of sophisticated technology, I can now monitor how many people are viewing each posting and their location (kind of creepy if you ask me).  The number varies for whatever reason but it is usually consistent without any big jumps in the viewership.

 Until...the bare bottoms blog.  Remember that one? Yep, I'm sure you do.  The hit machine went nuts.  My conversation with Rob as the numbers rose was the following:

Me: Wow!  People love bare bottoms.  I think a new way to get attention for MBC is to show a bare butt every time I post.

Rob: Hmmm! Well, if you could find anybody stupid enough to drop their drawers, go for it.

Me: Oh sweet husband, you have the perfect tush.  Please, please, please?

Suddenly the door slammed and the only view I had was his fully clothed backside running down the street screaming, "NOOOOOOOO!"

So readers the only a$$ showing you will witness here is the a$$ kicking of cancer--unless I can convince Rob to moon his--you know what-- which, unfortunately (or fortunately) for all of us, it probably won't happen.

Thanks for reading #265 of 7777.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

# 264 Independence Day!

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826)

They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Benjamin Franklin (1706–1790)

I always consider the settlement of America with reverence and wonder, as the opening of a grand scene and design in providence, for the illumination of the ignorant and the emancipation of the slavish part of mankind all over the earth.
John Adams (1735–1826)

That these united colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent states; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British crown; and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.
Richard Henry Lee (1732–1794)

There, I guess King George will be able to read that.
John Hancock (1737–1793)

Idleness and pride tax with a heavier hand than kings and parliaments. If we can get rid of the former, we may easily bear the latter.
Benjamin Franklin (1706–1790)

Liberty cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people, who have a right…and a desire to know; but besides this, they have a right, an indisputable, unalienable, indefeasible, divine right to that most dreaded and envied kind of knowledge, I mean of the characters and conduct of their rulers.
John Adams (1735–1826)

While Gen'l Howe with a Large Armament is advancing towards N. York, our Congress resolved to Declare the United Colonies free and Independent States. A Declaration for this Purpose, I expect, will this day pass Congress...It is gone so far that we must now be a free independent State, or a Conquered Country.
Abraham Clark (1726–1794)

The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826)

I am well aware of the toil and blood and treasure it will cost us to maintain this declaration, and support and defend these states. Yet through all the gloom I see the rays of ravishing light and glory. I can see that the end is worth all the means. This is our day of deliverance.
John Adams (1735–1826)

Equal and exact justice to all men…freedom of religion, freedom of the press, freedom of person under the protection of the habeas corpus; and trial by juries impartially selected,these principles form the bright constellation which has gone before us.
Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826)

We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately.
Benjamin Franklin (1706–1790)

Happy Fourth everyone!

Thanks for reading # 264 of 7777.

Friday, July 3, 2015

# 263 What I Should Have Said

What I wish I would have said on the swim day in Mendota.

Public speaking is not one of my favorite things to do. In fact, I'd rather sit in a dentist chair with pins sticking into me while undergoing a root canal--without any numbing device--that is how much I hate to get up in front of a crowd. (I know I was a teacher, but somehow that was different).

With that said, my speech before the masses on my Tuesday swim was, how can I say it, lacking in flair and punch.  Here was a willing non hostile audience and the words I wanted to convey were stuck somewhere in the back of my throat.

  So if you were at that send off, this is what I wish would have come from my heart and sent to you via my blubbering mouth.

Blah blah blah blah!

"Thank you for coming today on the fifth lake swim in Madison.  The weather gods were shining down on us every single swim day and they did not disappoint today.  It has been quite the ride and with everyone here it is even more special than I could have even imagined."

Then I would have rambled on about how honored and pleased I was that my supporters were there and dedicated the lake to them.  I did manage to say some nice things about my #1 supporter, Rob, whom I have often gushed over in this blog or publicly. That was all well and good,


What I did want to say is this group standing in front of me has chosen not to ignore Stage IV.  Maggie, Heather and the 155,000 of us living with this disease only have to look around at the assembly of supporters and know that we are not alone.  We have not been forgotten because this team of warriors are unwavering in their support and will shout from the rafters as long as we need them.

This entire swim "package of five" (a line from my daughter-in-law) has been a humbling experience from the beginning and I don't know how to thank these kind generous people anymore than simply saying, thank you.  I am a better person for having every single one of them in my life.

That was what I should have said.

(Please donate to...Metavivor link to donate)

Thanks for reading # 263 of 7777.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

# 262 Swim For A Cause

I am pleased to announce the group of swimmers from the Oregon Pool have put together a fundraiser for the month of July--swim a lap, make a donation.

The two women who decided on their own to tackle this project are like hungry sharks attacking a school of fish (pardon the water reference).  Once they decided on a plan I was astounded by their organization and dedication to my cause. Remarkable women!

The deal is make a pledge to someone swimmming laps or swim them yourself in your own pool, lake or pond and monitor your laps or the time you swim.  Below is the website with information to share with your own fitness facility to see if they will jump into the pool with you. Spread the word and let's get people swimming and donating.  Working and swimming together for a cure--that's what it is all about.

Click on the link and all the information you need to know will pop up on your screen. 

Swim for a Cause

Thanks for reading #262 of 7777.