Axe Cancer – A Fun Day

….and a great way to raise money for Camp Quality

A couple of weeks ago I told you about a fundraiser that I was participating in to raise money to send children with cancer to camp. I had set a goal for myself to raise $500.00 and thanks to all of you who donated I surpassed my goal and raised $515.00.

The event took place at BattL in the east end of the city and I have to say that the staff made the event a very enjoyable and memorable afternoon. We were a little concerned that the event took place on Father’s Day but the organization managed to pull together enough people to form 14 teams and as a surprise cast members from American Gods arrived and formed a team of their own.

My team, The Cormier Clan, consisted of my husband, my two daughters and me. We were instructed on how to throw the axes and the staff made sure that it was a very safe event. Everyone was given an opportunity to practise throwing the axe until we felt somewhat comfortable.

The teams were all mixed up and everyone threw against someone from another team. The staff kept track of the scores and after three rounds they tallied up the scores to figure out who the highest scorer from each team was. That person then competed in the finals to determine which team won the competition.

Our lead scorer was my. husband. For someone who was very hesitant to try this he ended up really enjoying  himself and went through two rounds before he was eliminated. In the end the team from American Gods won the whole thing. Here are a few photos of the event (my granddaughter was only there at the beginning and then her father took her to the Aquarium so she would be out of harm’s way).

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BULL’S EYE!!!!

…just to prove that Winnie wasn’t there during the throwing of the axes

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Axe Cancer in NOT Spam or a Scam

….this is an authentic fundraiser

I don’t normally try to enlist people on this site to sponsor good causes but I wanted to ensure people who received emails from me or saw it on my FaceBook page that this is a legitimate cause. With all the spam on the internet I can understand if you thought that this might be a scam. Trust me it’s NOT.

‘Axe Cancer’ supports Camp Quality which is a camp for children with cancer. My son-in-law is Executive Director for Camp Quality in Canada and he constantly tries to find ways to raise money for these camps that are completely run by volunteers all across this country. Camp Quality also runs camps in the U.S.A. and Australia. Here is the link for Camp Quality in Ontario if you’re interested in knowing more about the organization, the history and the members who run it.

Camp Quality

Next Sunday, my husband, daughter, son-in-law and I will be throwing axes as a team. I’ve never done anything like this in the past but I know some people who have and they love it.

My initial goal was to raise $150.00 and I raised it to $250.00. Now I think I have to raise it again. To the seven people who have already sponsored me, thank you very much. If you’d like to make a donation here is the link for ‘Axe Canada’.

Donate to Camp Quality

 

 

 

Happy Anniversary to Us!

…..38 years and still going strong

wedding photo

Today K and I celebrate our 38th wedding anniversary. Wow! Looking back through the photo albums it’s clear that we’ve changed physically but how we’ve grown and matured emotionally and socially aren’t as obvious.

K still has all his hair and there is very little grey. No, he does not use Grecian Formula. The big difference is that he likes to keep it really short. Drives me crazy because I’m the one who cuts it. Just when I start to like the length he insists it’s time for another buzz. I, on the other hand, still have very blonde hair but I do cover my grey and I’ve been wearing it longer.

We’ve both gained weight over the years. K used to run marathons when we were first married and even when the kids came along. Except on our wedding day, I’ve always weighed more than my husband. Even at my thinnest, 132 pounds, K weighed 2 pounds less (at the peak of his marathon running days). Although we’re both heavier now we’re probably fitter than we’ve been in years. We walk anywhere from 5 to 10 k every day and we eat pretty healthy meals.

I’ve always worked as a teacher but at numerous different schools and I’ve changed specialties over the years. K on the other hand has had a lot of different jobs  but he’s happiest working on his own. He’s been self employed for over 20 years.

People often ask what our secret is to maintaining such a long relationship. There really is no secret. We have our rough patches just like everyone else but we work through them together. We also give each other a lot of freedom to pursue our interests. K has always supported my little business adventures over the years and encourages me when I take courses and classes. I do the same for K. A few years back K was travelling to Ireland on his own almost every year. I knew it was important to him to keep in touch with his family and travelling in June or October made sense, money wise. Of course that meant that I couldn’t go because I’d be working. On the other hand, however, I have the cottage and I spend a great deal of time there during the summer.

When we were first married I did most of the cooking but K has become a very good chef and he prepares at least 75% of all our meals. I can’t tell you how envious my friends are.

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One of the most difficult  periods of our marriage took place about 3 years ago when K was diagnosed with cancer, CLL. Last year he underwent 6 months of chemo and I’m happy to say that he is in remission for now. We know that it will return but we’re hoping that it will be later rather than sooner. Today he went for his routine three month check-up and everything looks good but more importantly he feels good. This is the best anniversary present for both of us.

July 2013 at Howth, Ireland

July 2013 at Howth, Ireland

Running for Terry

…. and Kevin, Marcia, Kathy and anyone else who has or is suffering with cancer

Terry Fox was and is a Canadian hero. I say was because he passed away over 30 years ago just before his 23rd birthday. Diagnosed with a rare bone cancer at the age of 18 and after losing his right leg above the knee, Terry was determined to do something to help raise money to fight cancer and eventually find a cure.

In 1980, after secretly training on his artificial leg, Terry started his Marathon of Hope on the east coast of Canada and was determined to run all the way to the west coast. Everyday Terry ran 42 kilometres and along the way he collected money from the Canadian people for cancer research. His goal was to raise one dollar for every Canadian.

Unfortunately, just outside Thunder Bay, Ontario, Terry had to give up his journey because his cancer had spread to his lungs. Inspired by Terry’s dream, Canadians continued to raise money while Terry endured more treatments. Just before his death, Terry realized his dream when over 24 million dollars was raised.

Every year since, Terry Fox Runs across the country and in over 50 countries around the world have raised over 600 million dollars for cancer research. For the last 11 years at our school the children, staff and the community have raised over $22,000.

Thursday of this week we had our annual Terry Fox Run. After a short assembly and raising the Terry Fox flag, over 300 students, staff and parents ran around our cross country course. It was a beautiful day and full of emotion. Everyone wore large stickers this year with the names of loved ones they were running for.

Raising the Terry Fox flag before the run.

The whole school running around the yard and adjoining park.

Even our school trustee came out to join in.

My friend and colleague, G, who has organized this run at our school since 2001.

Running for her aunt.

A picture of me in my running gear. A picture I couldn’t even imagine 8 months ago.

Running for 3 people near and dear to me.

Holding Steady at 25

…. still down 25 pounds but experimenting with new foods is stalling my weight loss

I feel great, my clothes are looser and my size 16 pants are baggy around my waist but I’m learning that certain foods, even in moderation, stop or slow down my weight loss. Those foods that I need to avoid or limit even more are sweet potatoes, potatoes, nuts and dried fruit and pork products.

I have started running again and went out 2 days in a row while up at the cottage. I was all set to run again this morning but I took too long getting ready and as I was leaving the house, K returned with the dog from their walk and we had to get ready to go to the hospital for K’s follow-up check-up. On that front I’m happy to report that he’s doing well and the doctor’s only concern was his need for some vitamin supplements.

Later in the day it got too warm to run and frankly I was exhausted and fell asleep in the middle of the afternoon. I have to admit that I was disappointed that I didn’t lose more weight over the last 5 days, especially after all the exercise I did but I wasn’t completely surprised either. I do get very involved with my summer reading and even though I walk, run, swim and rake the grounds, I also am very stationary for hours at a time while I get lost in my books.

The last book that I finished was recommended by my good friend, B. I had a hard time getting into it but I couldn’t put it down either. Pigeon English by Stephen Kelman is set in modern day London, England and is written in the voice of a 12 year old boy from Ghana who witnesses the murder on a young boy in his neighbourhood. Together with his friends he tries to gather evidence for the police while at the same time avoiding the bullies and the pressure to join a gang. The language is colourful and at times difficult to understand. The book is often compared to Room in it’s writing style. The author combines humour with the harsh realities of living in a new country in a state of poverty. At times the story is endearing but disturbing and funny but sad. I would rate this book 3 out of 5.

Another New Computer and Long Overdue Photos

…. took the new one back and exchanged it for the newest version

Last night I couldn’t believe that Apple introduced a new version of the MacBook Pro, one week after buying my laptop. It was more powerful and cheaper. I checked my receipt and learned that I could return my purchase up to June 18th. I expected a fight but got quite the opposite.

Returning my purchase was painless. It couldn’t have been easier. So here I sit with a ‘newer’ laptop. K figures it will last just that much longer than the last version. My love for Apple has been renewed.

I’ve finally been able to access my photos. They include pictures of our special lunch with K after his last chemo treatment.

Me, A and J.

Hamming it up for the camera.

That’s better!

Sorry for Not Responding

…. looks like I’m going to have to bite the bullet and buy a new computer

The thing I miss most about not having a fully functioning computer is replying to emails and thanking people when they ‘like’ one of my posts. I am able to read everyone’s comments (with some difficulty) but I can’t even push the like button or make comments when I see things I like.

At the moment I’m working on my husband’s computer. I can’t always depend on using it though because he needs his for his business. Today is not a good day for him. The side effects of his last chemo session are hitting him hard this time around. Thank goodness it’s the last time (for now) that he has to endure this dreadful nausea.

I also miss posting pictures on my blog. I don’t feel I can download my photos on other people’s computers so at the moment all my pictures are sitting in my camera waiting for that new computer.

On the weight loss front, the scale had been up and down or static this week …. except today, it finally showed a significant loss. I am now down 14 1/2 pounds. Hooray!!! I’m almost hesitant to share this with you because of the fluctuations on the scale but on the other hand it keeps me motivated to keep going.

I’m going to try to keep my activity level up for the next two weeks because the Girls on the Run 5 km is two weeks today. It won’t be easy because it’s also report card time. Enough said.

For those of you who are following my blog, don’t give up on me. I read yours everyday and hopefully I can be up to full speed again in the next few days.

Cheers