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Running For More…

The personal blog and website of Kristen Cincotta

Posts Tagged ‘Special Thanks’

#ATL3Day Fundraising Update

Sunday, September 13th, 2015

Hi everyone!

As I mentioned yesterday, my friends and family have responded to my fundraising plea for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day with immense generosity. As a result, I was able to meet my fundraising minimum within two weeks of sending out my primary fundraising letter. In fact, I am currently sitting at $2680 (including two offline donations that haven’t posted yet), a number that blows my mind. Literally, all I have done to raise that money, besides raising awareness through my training, is send out fundraising letters. It is a testament to the size of the hearts of my donors that WE have raised that much money, so quickly.

Because I view this as a team effort from top to bottom, I wanted to acknowledge all of my donors to date in this public forum. No matter the size of the donation, all of them matter and all are appreciated. So please join me in thanking the following people for their commitment to the cause of ending breast cancer forever:

Family

  • Roger Sager – Thanks Dad!
  • Mike and Kathy Cincotta – My incredible in-laws
  • David and Claudia Reeves – Mom’s brother and sister-in-law
  • Laurie and Larry Yaw – Mom’s sister and brother-in-law
  • Robyn and Colin Fink – Cousins on my mom’s side and new parents of Awesome Calvin!
  • Chumby and Lorelle Torkewitz – More cousins on Mom’s side
  • Doug and Lydia Warfield – Mike’s maternal grandparents
  • John and Pam Cincotta – Mike’s uncle and aunt
  • Sam Cincotta and Janice Eaton – Mike’s other uncle and aunt
  • Tom and Maureen Harrington – Not technically family, but basically Mike’s uncle and aunt

Mom’s former colleagues – some of the MOST generous people I know!

  • Domenick Gambardella
  • Brandi Hanback (and the Rockefeller Group who matched her donation)
  • David and Laura Ostheimer

Friends (from all walks of life!)

  • Andy Piazza – Race Chair for the Komen Atlanta Race for the Cure and my first donor!
  • Patrick and Amber Brown
  • Amie and Justin Collins
  • Bonnie Gartley – Go see her at Big Peach in Midtown if you need new running shoes!
  • Tim Long
  • Mike and Dawn Mazzanti – Some of my most dedicated supporters who ALWAYS come through for me!
  • Sarah Merrill
  • Tim and Janet Shoemaker

Fellow 3-Day Walkers (and friends, obviously!)

[I wanted to call these ladies out separately because they are all ALSO fundraising for their own 3-Day walks. Links to their fundraising pages are included!]

Many of these folks have left me incredibly touching words of encouragement and dedications for their donations. Bonnie donated in honor of her aunt and Sarah donated in honor of her grandmother, both of whom were breast cancer survivors. I am honored to walk for them, just as I walk for Mom, Marcia, and several others.

So, what happens now that I’ve reached my fundraising minimum? WE KEEP GOING. There are 33 days left for me to reach my personal fundraising goal of $5000. That means I need to average just over $70 per day until the walk steps off on October 16th. That’s not an insignificant challenge but one that I think is very much in reach. If you would like to help me reach this goal, you can do so by clicking here (or on the widget in the sidebar… or on the image at the bottom of this post… ). If you’d prefer to mail me a check, let me know via email (kscincotta@gmail.com) and I will send the directions for how to do that.

You may have noticed that I didn’t post the amounts that any of my donors contributed to my fundraising cause. That is because I believe that all donations, regardless of size, are worth equal acknowledgement. A $20 donation from one person may reflect a week of skipped Starbucks just to be able to contribute while $100 from someone else may be a drop in the bucket. What matters is the commitment behind the donation, not the amount of it. A commitment to more breast cancer research that WILL save someone’s life. A commitment to better screening and treatment for those who wouldn’t otherwise have access to it. A commitment to improved education around cancer for all of us. I may be the one walking the miles, but all of us are a part of this movement. Thank you for taking this ride with me!

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Click the image to visit my fundraising page and make a donation!

 

My 3-Day Fundraising Plea

Saturday, September 12th, 2015

The Atlanta 3-Day is less than five weeks away. Thanks to the incredible generosity of my friends and family, I have already hit my fundraising minimum. In fact, everyone was SO generous, I reached that important milestone within two weeks of sending out my fundraising letters (WOW!). Words cannot express how grateful I am to everyone who has donated to date. This is an important and personal cause for me, and it touches my heart to see everyone come together to support the great work of Susan G. Komen in the fight against breast cancer.

HOWEVER! The walk is still five weeks away. That means there is still more time to raise money, and I don’t intend to stop trying until the clock runs out. My current fundraising goal is $5000, as it has been every time I’ve done the 3-Day. I would LOVE to hit this goal for a fourth time. But I can’t do it alone. So, to that end, I’m sharing my fundraising request here as well. Please read this to see why this cause is so important to me, especially this year, and what you can do to help. And if you know of anyone else who might be interested, I would be forever grateful to you for passing this on.

Thanks!


Dear Reader,

Shortly before my mom died of breast cancer last year, she told me something that I didn’t know. Unbeknownst to me, back in 2010, she had planned to walk in the Susan G. Komen 3-Day with my friends and me when we walked in memory of our friend Marcia’s passing. Marcia was my best friend’s mom. Marcia had gone through her cancer treatment alongside my mom for two years, enduring all of the ups and downs together before she sadly passed away in April of 2009. We walked to honor her relentless optimism throughout her battle and my mom wanted to be a part of that.

Unfortunately, that plan was derailed before it even got started. Mom’s cancer came back early in 2010, just as we were all starting to train and fundraise. She traveled to Boston with us in July and cheered us all on as “team mom”, never letting on that she had once hoped to be walking with us. Even then, she held out hope that she would eventually be well enough to walk those long 60 miles herself someday soon. Like me, she wanted to opportunity to give back to the breast cancer community that had benefitted her so much over the years. She wanted to take some responsibility for her own fate by raising money for the cancer research that had already prolonged her own life by several years beyond what her doctors expected.

Mom never got the chance to walk with me. While her health ebbed and flowed over the next few years, life kept me away from the 3-Day. I didn’t know she hoped to walk with me and I didn’t make the time to take on the fundraising and training challenges. When she told me her secret wish just a few weeks before she died, I knew immediately that I had to walk again. Whether by her side, with her cheering me on from the sidelines, or in her memory, I was determined to walk the 3-Day again. And this October, with her spirit guiding my feet over the streets and hills of Atlanta, I will do just that.

For those who don’t know what I’m talking about, the Susan G. Komen 3-Day is a 60 mile walk over the course of three days that raises funds for Susan G. Komen for the Cure and breast cancer research. A Susan G. Komen for the Cure grant has impacted virtually every major advance in the fight against breast cancer in the last 32 years. The money that we raise through the 3-Day will truly help to save the lives of untold numbers of women. In order to participate in this event, I must raise at least $2300 and would love to raise $5000. This is a huge goal and I cannot reach it by myself. Please consider making a fully tax-deductible donation to help me reach my fundraising goal today.

If you would like to contribute, you can do so one of two ways. If you prefer to take the traditional route, you can mail a check to me at home (email me at kscincotta@gmail.com for my address). The check should be made out to “Susan G. Komen 3-Day” in the amount that is right for you and then I will do all the legwork to get your donation processed. If you prefer to donate online, please visit my personal fundraising page at www.the3day.org/goto/kscincotta to process your donation. Donations made online can be made as one time payments or in installments for up to four months. As you consider your donation, please keep in mind that many companies have matching gift programs, an easy way for you to double the size of your contribution!

The Atlanta 3-Day steps off in less than 60 days. That is not much time for me to reach my fundraising goals. But I am confident that together, we can get there. I am doing all of the walking. I just need your help with the fundraising. My mom never got the chance to do this walk. This year, I am walking for her. Please help me get there.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this letter. I hope that you will join me in taking part in this incredible adventure. Please share this information with anyone that you think might be interested. If I have learned one thing during my time with the 3-Day, it is that everyone, everywhere has been touched by breast cancer in some way. This is something that has affected all of us and together, we are working towards achieving the ultimate goal of the Susan G. Komen 3-Day: a world without breast cancer.

All my best,

Kristen Sager Cincotta

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Clicking on the above image will also take you to my fundraising page. Thanks!

 

Welcome to the world, Dash!

Friday, August 22nd, 2014

Seventeen days ago, my husband Mike and I celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary by welcoming this guy into the world:

 Dash 20

As most of you know by now from social media, his name is Dashiell Reeves Cincotta and we affectionately call him Dash. Although my pregnancy was easy, Dash’s birth was not. I don’t feel comfortable sharing all of the details of his birth story in this public forum, but suffice it to say, three days of contractions (two days worth of which were induced following my water breaking) does not make for fun times. The length of time between when my water broke and when Dash was born also led to some nervous moments immediately after he arrived as well. Thankfully, everything turned out for the best and everyone has been doing well since then.

We have now been at home for two weeks, slowly figuring each other out and learning our new family dynamics. My mother-in-law was here for the first week and was hugely helpful, especially when it came to letting me catch up on sleep and recover from labor and delivery. She was joined by my father-in-law and brother-in-law last weekend, making them all Dash’s first visitors. While it was great to be surrounded by so much love and support, I think that by the time everyone left, both Mike and I were ready to be on our own as a small family and try to find our own new routines. The past few days have been a wonderful mix of happy baby snuggles (I could let this guy sleep on my chest for days!), frustration over seemingly cause-less baby wails, proud parenting victories (no crying during bath time last night!), and a love between all of us that grows exponentially with each passing day.

Dash 22

During the time since Dash was born, the world said good bye to Robin Williams. His passing led to a lot of discussion about the need for open dialogue around depression. In that spirit, I can honestly say that while things get better every single day, being a new parent has been a hard adjustment for me. I knew it would be physically exhausting, but the emotional toll it has taken has been a surprise. The best way to describe how I feel is this: I feel homesick. Not for a place, but for other times. I loved being pregnant and now realize that I wasn’t prepared for it to come to such an abrupt end. Our lives pre-Dash were easy and free, if a bit quiet in recent years. Shenanigans was the center of our universe for a very long time and I hate the idea that she is feeling neglected due to a change she had no say in. The thought that I can never go back to those times hurts my heart immensely, as it always does following a major life change. I also miss my mom more than I thought humanly possible. Knowing that, for the first time ever, my life has moved on to a stage that she will never be a part of makes everything that much harder. I am leaving her behind with my old life and that thought breaks my heart on a daily basis.

All of that being said, with each passing day, things get a bit easier. Sleep certainly helps, as does having a wonderfully supportive partner. I’ve also done better this week about getting outside for some fresh air and exercise most days. I can’t wait until next week when I can start running again, even though I know it will be challenging. Writing things out, as I’m doing here, also helps me to make sense of things. Returning to some of these old habits is a helpful reminder that not everything in life has changed and even those things that have changed, haven’t necessarily changed for the worse. Life just looks a bit different now and that’s ok.

As for Dash and I, we’re taking things one day at a time. We fall deeper in love with each other by the minute and I find that if he sleeps for too long, I actually miss him. Even with all of the emotions that I’ve been wrestling with, I have rarely felt overwhelmed by Dash himself. Holding him and realizing that I really do have the ability to comfort and soothe this tiny person in a way no one else does has been incredibly reassuring. I am genuinely amazed that he finds my singing voice soothing. Spending time looking into his big, curious eyes and feeling him snuggle into me has been very comforting to me in much the same way that holding Mike’s hand has always made me feel better in times of stress in the past. I already find myself wishing Dash would grow slower and stay this tiny forever, even as I simultaneously long for the days when he can take care of himself a bit more. I have not for one second regretted our choice to become parents.

Dash 27

I promise that not all of my blog posts going forward will be quite this personal, or even this Dash-heavy. But since I know a lot of people are checking in on me and are curious how I’m doing, I thought I would share a more thorough update. From here on, though, things will be back to blogging business as usual, as time and Dash allows. Next week starts my official “training” for the Atlanta Half Marathon on Thanksgiving Day, so you can expect to see training updates popping up regularly (hopefully weekly!). I’m not fundraising for this race, since completing this race is enough of a challenge for me at this point, but I always have my eye on the cancer advocacy world and will try to mention different events and opportunities as I learn about them. I’m already thinking about posts around the Stand Up to Cancer telethon on September 5th and both the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Atlanta walk and the Susan G. Komen 3 Day for the Cure in October. I’m also confident that I’ll be tying on my Komen Atlanta and Atlanta Track Club volunteer shoes soon enough. So there will be plenty to write about in the months to come. Plus you never know when I’ll throw in some Dash updates, so definitely check back regularly.

For now, though, a deep and sincere thanks to everyone for their well wishes and supportive words. While we haven’t been able to respond to everyone’s texts, tweets, emails, phone calls, cards, and Facebook messages, we have read and appreciated every single one!

Dash 16

 

All of the gorgeous photos in this post were courtesy of Allison DePalma Photography

#Run4Results Fundraising Update!

Tuesday, November 26th, 2013

Hello friends!

Cruising into the finish line - still standing! (Photo courtesy of MarathonFoto)

Cruising into the finish line – still standing!
(Photo courtesy of MarathonFoto)

Tonight, I spent a few hours doing one of my favorite volunteer gigs – working the Atlanta Track Club membership booth at the Atlanta Half Marathon Expo. Between being surrounded by all of that running goodness and the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday later this week, I thought it was appropriate to log on tonight to write a quick update on my #Run4Results fundraising for the American Cancer Society and to express my gratitude to everyone who supported me in this fundraiser!

So, without further adieu, I am THRILLED to share that I passed my fundraising for the #Run4Results! When I set out to do this fundraiser, I was running as well as I ever have, but was coming off some disappointing results from my #Run4Research fundraiser. Then my computer crashed and with it, my hopes of reaching my $1000 goal for this fundraiser in time for the AllState 13.1 Half Marathon at the beginning of October. However, as I wrote here, I regrouped and refocused and despite the development of some injuries that hampered my running, decided to target the Atlanta Marathon 10 Miler as my fundraising “goal race”. I quickly sent out some fundraising letters explaining what I was doing (which you can read here) and started pumping my fundraiser on social media.

On race morning (which was VERY chilly), my fundraising stood at $912. Not quite at my goal, but well beyond 75% of my overall goal, which was where I wanted to be on race day. So going into the race, I felt pretty confident that I would get there. Sure enough, over the next couple weeks, a few last donations trickled in bumping my fundraising up to where it currently stands now: $1052.30!!

After my relatively easy #Run4ROC fundraiser in March and my really tough #Run4Research fundraiser in June and July, I really wasn’t sure how this last fundraiser would go. Ultimately, I learned two important lessons:

1. With fundraising, you get out what you put in. The donations for this fundraiser really came in bunches – one bunch when I started the fundraiser, another bunch when I ran the AllState 13.1 half marathon, a huge influx after I sent my fundraising letters, and a few last donations after I ran the Atlanta Marathon 10 Miler. Clearly, when I put in the effort to write and share about what I was doing and why, people responded. Donations aren’t made because you wished for them. You have to put in the elbow grease to get the word out there. I’ve learned this lesson many times over the years and clearly, I needed to learn it at least once more.

2. My friends and family are incredibly generous. This is the third fundraiser I’ve done this year. I haven’t added up the total amount raised yet (that’ll come in December), but it’s somewhere in the range of $2750. That’s HUGE. I couldn’t self donate anything close to that amount of money. I was only able to meet my $1000 goal for #Run4Results and reach that larger fundraising total because of the generosity of all of you. So, extra special thank you to all of my wonderful #Run4Results donors: Pam and John CincottaCarolyn and Dustin DavisJanice Eaton and Sam CincottaDeb and Jon EhretLianne ForseyJay and Carole FurrDot HighfieldJanet and Tim Shoemaker, Caitlin Thayer, and both of my parents, Karen and Roger Sager.

I also wanted to give a special shout out to a few especially generous donors, either in amount or frequency of donation (or both!):

  • Andy Carr, my main man at the Atlanta Track Club who also donated to my #Run4Research fundraiser
  • Brandi Hanback, a colleague of my Mom’s who has been incredibly supportive of her throughout her cancer saga
  • Kate and Joel Jackson, who also donated to my #Run4ROC fundraiser
  • Dawn Mazzanti, who donated to all three of my fundraisers this year which is just absolutely above and beyond
  • Laura Scholz and Tim Long, who ALSO donated to all three of my fundraisers and ran the 10 Miler with Mike and I
  • Faren Shear, who also donated to my #Run4ROC fundraiser
  • Nancy Torkewitz, my aunt who thinks she donated anonymously but didn’t which is why I get to publicly thank her!
  • Laurie and Larry Yaw, who also donated to my #Run4ROC fundraiser as well as to my mini-fundraiser for the Atlanta Making Strides event

I am humbled to know that so many people support me in my efforts to do something in the fight against cancer in general and breast cancer specifically. Together, we truly are making a difference. When I am giving thanks this Thursday, much of that gratitude will towards everyone who has helped me to reach so many of my fundraising goals this year!

ACS Determination Logo 2

Because I have met my fundraising goal for the #Run4Results, I am not actively raising money for this fundraiser anymore. However, I am still quite a bit short of my fundraising goal for the #Run4Research, benefitting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. That fundraiser is still open and active. If you would like to contribute and help me reach that goal by the end of the year, you can do so here. Thanks!

#Run4Results Fundraising Update!

Tuesday, September 17th, 2013

We are now just under three weeks out from the AllState 13.1 Atlanta Half Marathon, which means that it is time for a little fundraising update!

To date, solely through the power of social media, I have raised $234.30 towards my goal of raising $1000 for the American Cancer Society, which is a fantastic start. Early donations make all of the difference when it comes to fundraisers like this. They give me hope and momentum that keeps me pushing to raise more money and I personally think that these early donations add legitimacy to my fundraiser, possibly encouraging others to make donations as well. So, to everyone who has donated so far, THANK YOU.

In particular, I have to recognize my four generous donors by name: Andy Carr, Faren Shear, Kate Jackson and her family, and Dawn Mazzanti and her family. All four of these wonderful folks not only donated to my #Run4Results fundraiser, but they have ALL donated to at least one of my other fundraisers this year as well. Dawn, in fact, has donated to all three fundraisers that I’ve run this year. Even more astonishingly, Faren, Kate, and Dawn are all fundraising for their own events this year too, which makes their generosity extra meaningful to me (clicking their names will take you to their fundraisers). So again, THANK YOU, to each of you for getting the ball rolling for me for this fundraiser!

I also wanted to take a minute and give a shout out to Cheryl Pochapin, who read my #Run4Research Lessons Learned post last week and was moved to make a late donation to that fundraiser. Cheryl is ALSO currently fundraising for her own event (and again, clicking her name will take you to her fundraiser). With Cheryl’s donation, my #Run4Research fundraising total has just barely edged out my #Run4Results fundraising total to date, with a total of $235 raised for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. So thank you Cheryl!

As for my own ongoing fundraising efforts, my overall goal still stands at $1000. However, I would be thrilled to reach my intermediate goal of $750 by race day, which is Sunday, October 6th. That means I’ll have to work a little harder to keep the donations rolling in, but if you’ve read this post about my less than successful #Run4Research, then you know that I’m already planning to do just that. So that’s the target I’m aiming at: $750 by race day!

To get there, I will be sending out my fundraising letters THIS WEEK to let my non-social media inclined friends and family know about my efforts. If you don’t get one, either via email or snail mail, let me know and I’ll send you the information. I’m also going to be posting my first piece about why I chose to focus my efforts on ACS. Hopefully between the two, I can really start to bring in the donations. If not, I’m going to have to start thinking about other fundraisers I can run and other sponsors I can bring on board. Stay tuned!

Finally, in addition to my 75% by race day goal, I would LOVE to get to $300 by the end of this week. If I can get to the $300 threshold, ACS will send me a DetermiNation singlet to wear for my race, giving me the opportunity to continue to draw attention to this great organization. I’m just $66 away from reaching this benchmark – can you help me get there today?

 

ACS Determination Logo 2

Please click on the image above to visit my fundraising page and make your donation!

Thank you for all of your ongoing support!

Fantasy Olympics Wrap Up!

Tuesday, August 21st, 2012

I know that the London 2012 Olympic Games have long since come and gone, but I would be remiss if I didn’t update everyone as to the final standings for our Fantasy Summer Olympics League benefitting members of the #3DayTweeps!

Ultimately, our league was made up of 29 paid teams, although thanks to the generosity of our family, friends, and fellow #3DayTweeps, we actually raised $370 total. That amount was divided into a $145 prize for our overall winner (equal to half of the $290 collected as entry fees) and $225 that was distributed amongst the walkers and crew members who helped recruit participants for our league fundraiser ($145 in entry fees plus an extra $80 in bonus donations). In the end, the five registered walkers who participated each received a donation of $30 and the three registered crew members each received a donation of $25 (because Nicole Anderson generously re-donated her portion back to the walkers). Those donations were all made on August 9th, just in time for the Chicago 3 Day in which many of the participating tweeps were walking and/or crewing.

So, in conclusion, the following #3DayTweeps received donations from this fundraiser:

Walkers
Julie Brock
Val Daniels
Laura Davis
Bernadette Massey
Cheryl Pochapin

Crew
Lyle Deckowitz
Anne Marie DeSimone
Alison Glancz

As for our overall winner, I am thrilled to announce that a fellow #3DayTweep, Jennifer Carbary and her team, Save the Toucans, were ultimately victorious in our Fantasy Olympics League! That means that Jen is the recipient of the $145 grand prize. Because Jen had already reached her fundraising minimum for her 2012 3-Day walk in Michigan, she requested that I hold her prize money to donate to her 2013 fundraising efforts, which I have since done. Congratulations Jen and what a great use for the $145!

In case you were interested in how your team ultimately fared, the COMPLETE final standings for our Fantasy Olympics League were:

Gold Medal Save the Toucans Jennifer Carbary 1856
Silver Medal Lyle Lyle Deckowitz 1847
Bronze Medal Shannon Miller JT Shoemaker 1787
4 Alison Alison Glancz 1759
5 Bernadette Bernadette Dohmen 1725
6 Henry’s Picks Laura Davis 1685
7 Z Team Kizo 1678
8 Croatian Water Polo Helmets Kristen Cincotta 1649
9 I love the oylimpics Dustin Davis 1597
10 Irish Car Bombs Joel Jackson 1569
11 Team Batman! Anne Marie DeSimone 1568
12 Julie Walks…all over the medal count! Julie Brock 1551
13 Wes Wes Lyons 1531
14 Cheryl Cheryl Pochapin 1503
15 Fruitcakes Kate Jackson 1487
16 Pinkalicious Nicole Anderson 1485
17 wile e. wolverines Michael Cha 1459
18 Casondra Casondra Clement 1440
19 Bryan Bryan Miller 1417
20 Valcinda of Stokesdale Valerie Daniels 1396
21 Rikki Rikki Noel-Williams 1375
22 SHOEt for the Gold! Matt Shoemaker 1348
23 Mike Mike Cincotta 1344
24 Lisa Lisa Brewster 1343
25 Medals for Mimi Jen Rabbitt 1340
26 Cinvaldia of Stokesdale Cindy Adams 1332
27 Go Sis!! Nancy McKeown 1306
28 Mylia Mylia Liddell 1299
29 PKS Warriors Gretchen Peters 1261
30 Team Big Sis Kristin Moreland 1256

 

Our league website is still public and can be found here, in the event that you want to look over the results in more detail. In particular, you can find the “ideal” fantasy team of countries that would have accumulated the highest possible score here. Relatedly, my good friend JT Shoemaker (who finished third overall) did a tremendous amount of work calculating all of the point totals and updating the site on a daily basis. Please join me in thanking JT profusely for his efforts – I could not have run this fundraiser without him!

And with that, I think this Fantasy Olympics fundraiser is complete. I could not be more thrilled that every penny of the $370 that we raised is going to help 3-Day walkers and crew members reach their fundraising goals and, as a result, will be put directly into the fight against breast cancer.

Thank you for playing along! See you again for the Sochi 2014 Winter Games!

Our Team Shirts!

Sunday, July 18th, 2010

(Note: This was cross-posted from the Relentless Optimism team blog because I was just too excited not to share!)

Things are really moving here at Relentless Optimism headquarters, with the Boston 3 Day for the Cure stepping off in just five days!  Our team banner was delivered, our article was published in our hometown paper and now, our team shirts have arrived!

The Official Relentless Optimism Walker shirt!

We are incredibly excited to have our own team shirts this year to wear throughout the 3 Day event.  This will be my third 3 Day event and it will be the first time that my teammates and I have had matching shirts for the walk.  We truly feel like a team now!

Our team shirts were generously provided for our team by Mag Mom Diana Moreland and her company Diana’s Costume Closet who we cannot thank enough for her support of our team.  The shirts feature another version of the Relentless Optimism logo on our team banner that was again created for us by Robyn Torkewitz.  If you would like Robyn to design something for your team, you can see more of her work and find her contact information here.


Playing supermodel in our team shirts before a training walk.

For our shirts, we worked closely with Custom Ink to get everything just right.  If you are interested in ordering something similar for your team or event, I highly recommend them.  They will work with you to ensure the clearest possible printing of your design and will check in with you at every possible.  I worked with a wonderful guy named Neil who was incredibly patient with me as I made change after change to our design.  Even after five different proofs, we still received our shirts three days earlier than expected.  I really can’t say enough great things about Custom Ink!

For those who are wondering, our shirts are the Augusta Lades Performance Sleeveless Ts.  I tried mine out on a training walk and it was great!  No weird seams and no pulling.  If you are looking to order shirts for the 3 Day, this really is an excellent choice.

A closer look at the back of shirts, featuring our team sponsors (click to enlarge).  
Some small changes were made from this proof to the final versions of our shirts for clarity.

I can’t wait to hit the streets of Boston in our new team shirts.  If you see us out walking, please be sure to say hello!

Relentless Optimism Thanks You!

Monday, July 12th, 2010

(Note:  I’m cross-posting this from our team blog so that everyone sees it!)

All of us here at Relentless Optimism are incredibly grateful for every donation that we have received this year.  We would not be able to do this crazy thing that is the 3 Day without the support of our friends, family and generous strangers.  The primary goal of the Breast Cancer 3 Day is to raise money to help find a cure for breast cancer.  It is because of the generosity of all of our donors and supporters that we are now that much closer to achieving a world without breast cancer.

We are incredibly thankful for and overwhelmed by the number of donations that we have received in pursuit of our team goal of raising $20,000 before the end of August.  We are thankful for every single person that entered one of our fundraising contests or bought flowers through Flower Power.  We are thankful for everyone that supported us through Tastefully Simple or Mary Kay.  If you bought some stuff through our Amazon link or clicked on our Google Ads before they were shut down, well, we’re thankful to you too.  It is because of all of you that we have been able to raise so much money for such an important cause.

Because we are so touched by the enormous generosity that has been sent our way, we want everyone to know all of your names.  Shouting all of your names from a hilltop is little too difficult and hiring a skywriter to write all your names in the clouds is a little too expensive.  So instead of all that, we have chosen to instead recognize each and every one of our donors and sponsors on a large banner that will be proudly on display between our tents during the Boston 3 Day for the Cure!

Our team banner, courtesy of Vistaprint!
(Click to enlarge)

I am thrilled that we are able to recognize all of our supporters in such a public way.  If you donated to us in any way before July 1st, then your name is in there and everyone in Boston will know it.  We are truly honored that you have all thrown your support behind us and we hope that we can make you all proud as we walk up and down the streets of Boston in just under two weeks time.  

I also would be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge my cousin Robyn Torkewitz who designed the spiffy new Relentless Optimism logo that you see on our banner.  She also designed a second logo for our team shirts that we will be showing off in Boston as well.  Robyn is a very talented graphic designer and we’re thrilled that she donated her services to us in this way.  If you would like to see more of her work, you can find her personal website here

Finally, if you will be walking in the Boston 3 Day for the Cure, please be on the look out for our banner!  If you happen to spot us in the sea of pink tents, please be sure to stop by and say hi!

THANK YOU!  THANK YOU!  THANK YOU!

Image courtesy of Leanne Johnston.

The Reeves Family Training Walk!

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

As I mentioned in last week’s Week in Review post, I spent Memorial Day weekend in western New York visiting my mom’s family.  It was a bit of a whirlwind trip, as we were only in town for about 48 hours.  Needless to say, we didn’t sleep a whole lot.  Because of that, I knew that if I didn’t plan things out ahead of time, I was going to miss out on some important training miles for the Susan G. Komen 3 Day for the Cure.  To make sure that I stayed on track, I decided to plan an official training walk just for my family!

The route that we walked was absolutely gorgeous and we couldn’t have asked for better weather.  We walked along the Seaway Trail, a paved trail that snakes along the Niagara River.  We were treated to scenic views of Canada just about the entire way.  Walking along the border of our country was a big change from the steamy sidewalks of Atlanta.  I absolutely loved it!

Hello Canada!

Now, no one in my family besides me is actually going to be walking in the 3 Day.  Unlike me, they haven’t been busting toe and tail to get in walking shape.  Because of that, I knew that the 9 mile route that I had planned would be a bit of a stretch for most of them to complete.  So instead of everyone walking the whole distance, we ended up completing the walk “relay style”.  Some people started at the beginning and only walked for a short distance, some people jumped in along the way and a couple hardy family members walked the entire distance from my grandmother’s house to my Aunt Barb and Uncle Rich’s house where the family reunion was taking place.  It was sort of fun walking along the trail and waiting to see who would pop up next!

For the first short leg of our walk, Mike and I were joined by my mom.  Mom is the middle of chemo treatments, so we knew she wouldn’t be able to do a long stretch of walking.  However, she was determined to take part in the family training walk, so she walked with us from the Bed and Breakfast in Lewiston where we were staying to Mima’s house, which was the “official” starting point for everyone else.  Mom’s leg of the walk covered 0.75 miles.

Mom and I during the first leg of the training walk.

At Mima’s house, Mike and I met up with my Uncle Sean, my cousin Patty, Patty’s husband Konrad and their little baby Jax in his stroller.  I was a bit concerned that people wouldn’t have proper walking gear, but everyone came ready to walk, all with their sneakers on and water bottles in hand.  As Sean said, “When someone in this family suggests going for a walk, that means you wear your sneakers!”


Sean and Konrad pushing Jax in the stroller (L) and Mike and Patty (R)

We were joined by my Aunt Nancy on our way up to the Seaway Trail from Mima’s.  Nancy ended up walking with us for a little over two miles before turning around to head back into Lewiston to pick up her family for the picnic later.  So we figure Nancy walked about 5 miles round trip.  We were trying to convince her to keep walking with us and have her family meet her at the end, but to no avail.  Unfortunately, that meant no pictures of Nancy on our walk.  Next time!

Pit stop to check on Jax and get some water.

After a quick pit stop, we continued on our way.  Sean and Konrad decided to be total boys about the whole thing and speed walked the rest of the way to the end with Jax.  We didn’t actually see them again until we finished the walk.  I think they ended up finishing about 30 minutes before the rest of us.  They said they were feeling pretty good afterwards but I suspect they were feeling it the next day.  Nine miles is a long way!

Shortly after Sean and Konrad took off, Patty, Mike and I were joined by my Uncle Rich.  We didn’t actually know that Rich was planning to join us, so that was a great surprise!  We figure we picked up Rich around Mile 3, so he ended up walking 6 miles total.  Our walk ultimately took us into the cute village of Youngstown where we found my Aunt Pam waiting at a cafe table for us.  Pam was probably just over a mile from the end of the route, so with her walk out to meet us, she did just over 2 miles round trip.

Pam and Rich walking in Youngstown.

The very last walkers to join us were my Aunt Barb, my cousin Jenny and her 13 month old son Dane.  Barb has had some issues with her feet recently, so much like my mom, she knew she couldn’t walk for very far.  So while Mom took the opening leg, Barb took on the very last leg.  Apparently they weren’t satisfied with how far they had walked, though, because they kept walking after we headed inside!

Aunt Barb, Jenny and Dane.

All in all, it was a wonderful way to spend the morning!  I got to get in my training miles, I got to catch up with my family who I hadn’t seen in years and Mom’s family got to show their support for her.  It is amazing to have this kind of support from my family – it meant more to me than they can possibly know.  I can’t wait for all of them to come out to Boston in July for the actual walk.  Seeing the mass of pink stretching for miles and miles is really a sight to behold.  And now, they are truly a part of the 3 Day family!

Thank you Reeves family!!  See you in July!!

Fundraising Update – Halfway to $2300!

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

It’s little early for my weekly recap, but I wanted to share some good news:  I’m officially halfway to my fundraising minimum for the Susan G. Komen 3 Day for the Cure event in Boston!  I was really excited to find this letter from the 3 Day folks in my inbox this morning and I thought I would pass it on.  I also wanted to thank everyone that has donated so far – I couldn’t do it without you!  Now, onward to $2300…

Congratulations! You have reached a huge milestone in your Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure™ journey: reaching half of the $2,300 fundraising minimum. You are so close to experiencing the event of a lifetime. You can do it!

Your fundraising efforts are invaluable. The dollars raised by dedicated women and men like you are making immense developments in the breast cancer movement.

Did you know that virtually every major advance in the fight against breast cancer has been touched by Susan G. Komen for the Cure®? That we’ve helped train more than 400 breast cancer researchers and funded more than 1,800 research projects over the past 27 years? That we’ve provided more money for breast cancer research and community health programs than any entity besides the U.S. government? Komen for the Cure’s goal is to “energize science to find the cures.” We are proud of our contribution to some real victories:

More early detection – nearly 75 percent of women over 40 years old now receive regular mammograms, the single most effective tool for detecting breast cancer early (in 1982, less than 30 percent received a clinical exam).

More hope – the five-year survival rate for breast cancer, when caught early before it spreads beyond the breast, is now 98 percent (compared to 74 percent in 1982).

More research – the federal government now devotes more than $900 million each year to breast cancer research, treatment and prevention (compared to $30 million in 1982).

More survivors – America’s 2.5 million breast cancers survivors, the largest group of cancer survivors in the U.S., are a living testament to the power of society and science to save lives.

Thank you for your help in eradicating breast cancer. We couldn’t do it without you and applaud your efforts this far. We know you can meet your goal so we can reach our goal of a world without breast cancer. Keep up the great work!

If you need any help getting to the next step, call the Komen 3-Day for the Cure coaches at 800-996-3DAY for advice.

Breast Cancer Fact: Breast cancer knows no boundaries—be it age, gender, socio-economic status or geographic location.