Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Our Community is OUTSTANDING!

I've always known we lived in a great community. Collingwood born and raised, and love it here! But it has been in the past 3 years since taking on the role of Run Director for this great event that the community has truly really shined for me. Our community and surrounding communities really go above and beyond when the need is there. We see it time and time again. (( A great example of this was in the summer of 2008 when Drew Wright was on Canadian Idol, the out pouring of support was amazing to see. ))
Now when it come to our event the support from our local community is OUTSTANDING. In 2008 when I stepped into the role of Run Director, we already had an amazing base group of local sponsors, that year we were able to add to that group with some more amazing sponsors.
Year after year our Collingwood local sponsors set the bar ( in my eyes ). We are blessed at our site to have such support, that way we are able to keep our costs as a site as low as possible. The most important thing to me as a Run Director has been to keep all costs as low as possible. Having been a participant for 3 years prior to my role as Run Director, I knew first hand how hard it was to raise money and how exciting it was to get a donation ( whatever amount it may be ). So it is important to myself and my committee that we keep our site costs low and I can say with lots of certainty that our site keeps cost very low!

We are able to do this because of our OUTSTANDING local sponsors and friends of the Collingwood Run Site.
I really can't express enough how much we as a committee appreciate their support.
Please join me in saying a huge THANK YOU, to our 2010 local Sponsors.... ( In random Order )

Georgian Life

and our 2010 Friends of the Collingwood Run Site so far are....

If you know any other local businesses who might like to become Friends of the Collingwood Run Site please email me to learn more...

Once again we would like so say a huge THANK YOU to all of our local sponsors.

Summer is here, a new month begins tomorrow, Happy Canada Day everyone, SQUEEZE
those lemons !

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Pink Collection is back @ CIBC...

The 2010 CIBC Pink Collection has arrived!

Pop into a CIBC branch and pick up one of the fabulous 2010 pink collection items. 100% of the net proceeds support for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.

In 2009 CIBC banks raised $1.76 MILLION through the CIBC Pink Collection! All thanks to you! Let's help do it again this year...

This years Pink Collection includes a Card Protector , Bookmark , Roll-up Eco Bag Glass Magnets Photo Album, Lunch Tote and Cufflinks ....

Remember while your thinking PINK, you should also be thinking about your lemons !

( Photo shoes, Lunch tote, Cufflinks, photo album and glass magnets. )

Friday, June 18, 2010

Save the Date, Mark your Calendar's, Come join us....

Mark Tuesday July 13, 2010 on your calendars.. Thanks to the generosity of Blue Mountain our Collingwood Run Site will host it's 2nd Annual Information & Appreciation Night.
Formal invitations will be emailed out shortly. This is a night you won't want to miss, hear from Guest speakers, including Dr. Renee Hanrahan of RVH in Barrie, Dr. Hanrahan is a foundation funded fellow who will speak about her work and the way in which it has contributed to breast cancer research.
It is important to our committee that we are able to share with you where some of the money you work so hard to fundraise is going and the differences that we ARE making in creating a future without breast cancer. So please mark your calendars and join us! See you soon...

Are you getting to know your lemons?

( Save the Date created by my very talented little sister, Lauren Schleifer )

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Some will walk, some will run, ALL will create a future without breast cancer...

On Sunday October 3rd 2010

Join us at Harbourview Park in Collingwood as we gather together, some will walk, some will run, some will volunteer and some will donate, but ALL will be creating a future without breast cancer.

Have you registered yet? Who are you running for?

Give those lemons a good squeeze!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

An Amazing Story about Life, Love & Cancer

I have watched many great love story movies, and to me coming across this blog, it feels like the one of the great love stories you would see played out on film, but it's not a movie, it's real life. A real life story about life, love and cancer.
I stumbled across a blog a last week called The Bees Knees. I really think it has forever changed my life. I was so moved by it that I really felt the need to share it.
I didn't know Meghan, nor do I know her husband Adam, I have however been emailing back and forth with Adam for a week now chatting about writing this blog post, and have come to realize more each time I get a new email how truly inspiring their story is.

The Bees Knees is Meghan's blog. Her journey at the age of 27 with Breast Cancer, the blog was to keep a detailed description of the physical and the emotional struggles that Meghan was going through while living her life with cancer. What first caught my attention as I skimmed through her blog posts the first time, was how unafraid Meghan was to show exactly what she was going through. Even posting pictures after her Mastectomy. I found it incredibly brave. I then went back to the most recent blog post to realize that it wasn't Meghan signing off on the blog posts, it was Adam. Adam, Meghan's husband has taken over the reins of The Bees Knees, and this is where the story took on a true love story for me. You see when you read the blog or the new website 'For the Love of Meghan' you will learn that Meghan was a list maker, she had a list of goals she wanted to accomplish in her life, one of the goals on the list was to get Married. On Meghan's list of 'new goals' she wrote # 5) Get Married ( hahaha, um... no pressure Adam ) Meghan crossed that goal off her list on March 28th 2010 in Petrolia, ON. Meghan passed away 1 day shy of their One month Anniversary.
Adam decided to take over Meghan's list, to accomplish all of the life goals that his wife was unable to cross off her list before her passing on April 27th, 2010. I can not even being to explain how truly inspiring I find this. It really speaks to the woman that Meghan must have been. ( I will enclose Meghan's List at the bottom of this post )

In my emails with Adam about writing this blog post I asked him some questions about Meghan and about their story,

Q: Adam, I myself didn't know Meghan, I just stumbled upon her blog " The Bees Knees"... What can you tell me about Meghan, just Meghan, the woman?

A : Meghan was the best thing that happened to me. She constantly, and very gently, tried to help me be a better person in every way. She was a great judge of character and wanted to like everyone. She was extremely protective of those she loved. She never wanted to stop learning or pushing herself. She was a list maker, a great cook, had amazing style, liked good music(and sometimes bad music), could not stand being lazy(which ruined many a good morning watching tv or trying to sleep in). She had hope beyond hope. She was mentally and emotionally stronger than anyone I've known. She was completely determined to succeed and dedicated to the things she believed in. She loved rules and hated breaking them. She was proud of her family and herself for the things they had come through and achieved. She liked drinking tea. She wished she lived in a Jane Austen book. She liked being healthy and exercising and going to bed early. She was strikingly beautiful.

Q: Now what can you share with Meghan, and her diagnosis with Breast Cancer?

A: She was definitely upset about it but never let it get her down. She had so much resolve and strength throughout the entire time. She determined right away that she was going to fight every last second and never let it beat her spirit. She took everything in stride, as just another step along the way to recovery. She took the time to teach herself about every aspect of her diagnosis and was always realistic about what each thing meant.

Q: I know you can't speak for Meghan, but what do you think that Meghan would want people, esp. young women to take away from her blog, and her experience with cancer?

A: She wanted everyone to understand what she was going through and to provide a concise and simple outline of breast cancer treatment. She wanted everyone to understand that cancer can never take your resolve, determination or spirit. Those are things you always have control of.

Q: Meghan made a list, a list of Life Goals, Meghan wasn't able to finish the list before she died, you have decided to take over that list, I know a lot of people would say, "of course they would do that for their wife or husband" but most wouldn't, for most they wouldn't pack up and set out to live in 5 different countries, travel to 30, run a half marathon. Was taking over the blog and the list something you talked about with Meghan, how did you decide to do this?

A: Not really. I was not the strong one throughout Meghan's treatment. Every time she tried to bring up what I would do afterward I would get upset, start crying or change subject. I didn't want to give the thought of Meghan not being here any space in my head. This goes back to her being realistic about everything. She wanted to make sure I'd be ok. So i avoided talking about any of is with her. I decided to finish her goals not ten minutes after she passed away. I couldn't stop thinking about how unfair it was that she wasn't here anymore and how much these things meant to her, how important it was for her to always be striving for something. She deserved more than anyone to have the chance to see these things through and something in me knew that the only way to heal(whatever that means) is to have goals that mean something to her. To do things she couldn't because 'm still here. To not waste my time and be lazy. The best way any of us can honor her is to make an impact, to make something of ourselves that betters others.

Q: I have watched and loved a lot of great movies, I know you want this blog post I am writing to be about Meghan and her story, but you are part of her story, a HUGE part, you are her husband, and you are doing this truly incredible and inspiring thing for your wife. It seems like a great love story movie, only it's real. I commend you.
How do your families feel?

A: I think it makes sense to both sets of parents. Both know what we meant to each other and both can see how important it is to do this for Meghan so yeah, I think both are fully supportive of it.

Q: If you could describe Meghan in just one word, what would it be?

A : Anchor

Here is Meghan's List of Life Goals..... (If you go to The Bees Knees Blog, you will see an Update on how many goals Adam has been able to work towards crossing off in the past 6 weeks since Meghan's passing...)

So.... here we go- (Thursday, September 10, 2009)
Life Goals...

1) To hold a PhD, I'm not too picky on what it is going to be in. The way I am going though, I think it's bound to be nursing.
2) To learn another language. I've got a head start on Korean and French, I just need to get motivated enough to do it.
3) To master at least one of the following musical instruments - cornet, cello, piano, or guitar.
4) To live in at least 5 different countries - So far I've only got Canada and Korea. I'm assuming that I will have United States in the near future (preferably San Fran, DC, Portland and Maine). I'm thinking somewhere in Europe and in South America?
5) To run a half marathon. I've a lot of training to do though, seeing as the 5km I ran today was far from easy.
6) Spend at least 100 hours volunteering. (Note*** So far I'm up to 40h :))
7) Master the following- sewing, knitting & crocheting (Note*** on my way with knitting/sewing, kinda sorta)
8) Become part owner of a Bed & Breakfast (with Adam)
9) Travel to 30 countries. I'm at 7 now.
10) Read at least 12 books a year until I die (Textbooks NOT included).
11) Complete 'The Weekend to End Breast Cancer' 60km walk in Toronto. Sept 11-12.
12) Own a little cottage by a lake.

New Goals-
1) Take the train across Canada
Go to an NHL game (don't really care where, I just want to go)March 6th in Ottawa
3) Make Peter take me (and friends) to a Blue Jays game... I don't really have any interest in baseball, but I think it would be fun.
Go to the Symphony. Feb 20th in Toronto
Get married (hahaha, um... no pressure Adam) March 28th in Petrolia
6) Go to Canada's Wonderland with my friends/family
7) Take a road trip back to Maine
8) Go snowshoeing
9) Go ice-skating on the Rideau Canal
10) Get my darn tooth fixed
11) Get some darn shiny nice new glasses
12) I've always wanted to go to Ireland with my father... it's been a dream of mine since I was just a little girl. My father has been, and he loved it. I would love to share this with him while I still can. I don't think I'm ready to let go of this dream yet.
13) See the northern lights.
14) Travel to India to volunteer in orphanages.

Wishing Adam all the best on this journey as he works his way through Meghan's List of Life Goals, and wishing the best for both Adam, his family & Meghan's family as you learn to live without Meghan here. I know all to well the feeling of the loss of a loved one to cancer ( my dad ) and I wish you all the best.
Both Meghan and Adam, have inspired me more then I could ever say. I am very thankful to have stumbled across your story, and to be able to share it with others. I think it's worth sharing, and I would ask each of you to take a few moments and check out The Bees Knees for yourself.

You are never to young to start squeezing your lemons !

( With Adams permission the photo of Adam and Meghan was taken from Adam's sister's blog )

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

And the Winner Is....

So the verdict is in.
Remember a little while back I wrote about picking a winning team name. One that sets the tone and the boob bar until run day, October 3rd? Well, after much debate and input from faithful friends - it's finally DONE. I thank everyone for their time & suggestions in my breast name quest - and truly for providing some very fun correspondence!

To recap: I came up with 10 possible team names:
Steph's Breasts In Show
The MacDaddy's Booby Train - hmm
Boob's Your Uncle, Run With Steph
Steph's Original Ladies
Steph's Big Bazookas
Get Your Bazooms On
Stephie's Carumbas
Steph's Boobs of Fury
The Pontoons
Chesticles of Fury
Chi-Chis for a Cause
MacDaddy's Gazongas
Some were funnier than others. Some didn't quite register and, heck, I didn't understand a few. But, after reaching out for help, I did get an email from one of my closest buddies. He suggested three winning choices: twin peaks, the rib pillows or the pointer sisters. How could I go back to my original 10 with these three instant classics? They were so good. So, the search became 3. And then there was 1.

So, drum roll please

The winner is

Steph's Pointer Sisters

It works, It's direct. It's too the point. Dare I say it, I'm so exited and I just can't hide it. I'm about to lose control and....I think I like it. OK, I took that a little far. I apologize. But, isn't that what the Run is all about - getting excited; supporting a great cause; and being motivated to help in any way you can?!?

I am happy to report I have registered my team proudly. I have 6 confirmed teammates and I am looking for a few more. Let the fundraising begin and be sure to be on the look out for my Pointer Sisters on Sunday, October 3rd!

And, give those lemons a good, healthy squeeze.


Stay tuned to Freshly Squeezed - we have lots of fresh ideas for a FABULOUS RUN day on Sunday, October 3rd!