It's Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. It's one of the busiest months of my year. Here's a little rundown of one week:
Saturday, September 12th--Heroes for Children 5K Run/Walk. The rain that lasted for well over a week came in a few days before, promising 100% rain. Yeah. Luckily, we had a little talk with our angel who made it only drizzle slightly long enough for us to have another great race. The downpour started just minutes after we all drove away. The race was awesome. We had happy runners and happy children who came to enjoy the event. I'm thrilled with the turnout given the rain.
That night, we enjoyed a fun evening with Debbie and Brandon and Deanna plus a whole mess of kids. The younger girls played destroy Maggie's room and dress up as much as possible while the older ones holed themselves up in the front room playing Wii Resort. The adults laughed hysterically, ate yummy Mexican food, and told story after story. Love these friends. Maggie's new mattress for her "big sister bed" arrived, leaving D's oldest girl to declare that it was PERFECT for a sleepover! So, sleepover with Maddy, Gabby, and Maggie it was.
Sunday, September 13th--The anniversary of Allie's death. FIVE YEARS. To say it was an emotional day is an understatement. I was a mess. It hit me so incredibly hard. Reading my sweet husband's letter (see blog below if you haven't read it yet) left me sobbing in the shower. For twenty minutes. Just stood there and cried. We attempted some family time that didn't go as planned (damn rain) and then came the Cowboy game. Andrew wanted a bit of distraction and I was VERY unhappy about his choice of focusing on the game. Let's just say it didn't go well. I think I spent more than six hours, maybe eight, sobbing that day. It was awful.
Monday, September 14th--My funk of the day before spilled into Monday. I was cranky. In a foul mood. So, I chose the best thing I could do for my co-workers. Close the door to my office, leave my funk enclosed there, and get my to do list knocked out. Maggie and I had dinner with my mom and grandma that night after her dance class.
Tuesday, September 15th--It was a hectic day at work. No time for a funky foul mood. I had to finalize all my prep for a massive trip to Houston, leaving the next morning. In the middle of it, I had to stop and head over to a meeting for planning Heroes for Children's 5th birthday party celebration.
Wednesday, September 16th--Andrew dropped me off at the rental car place after we both dropped Maggie off for school. I was renting a minivan for our big Houston trip. I finally made it on the road around 10am and headed Houston bound down 45. Halfway into the trip, a car in front of me swerved into the right lane. Then, it swerved and fishtailed, trying to regain control. The next thing I know, the car (less than half a football field away, I'm the next car heading about 85 miles an hour), cuts hard to the left, goes into the ditch, up the other side of the ditch, and goes through the thick wire barricade, doing a 180 at the end and heading the opposite direction. Along with two other cars, I stopped to check on the car, after getting my heartrate a bit slower. An elderly couple emerged from the car. The driver, the husband, had fallen asleep at the wheel. Once I made sure everyone was ok and spoke to the police officer who responded, I was back on the road. Phew.
That night was our kick off meeting for the 2010 Heroes and Handbags event in Houston (April 16th, River Oaks Country Club). I love the women I work with in Houston on this event. They are incredibly sweet, dedicated, funny, and stylish. They know handbags. The meeting was a success and I'm looking forward to another great year.
Thursday, September 17th--8am call with the HR Director of Best Buy about Heroes for Children's Laptops for Love program. I don't know what will come of it but I'm hopeful we have the possibility of developing a relationship with them. She loved our laptop program and what it does for teens. We've donated over 210 laptops since Heroes for Children was founded. Love this program.
I picked up Allan and Christie, two of our awesome board members and Michelle, our Director of Development, and Larissa from the airport then we all headed to have a little sushi lunch (yes, I chose cooked only sushi). That evening was Hold'Em for Heroes, our men only poker tournament at the Houston Racquet Club. We got there at five for set up. We left at 1am. We had 145 players. It was an awesome night. The only women there were on the committee, dressed in black and red. Um, yeah, finding a red maternity top? Not as easy as you would think. I love this event. It's definitely one of my favorites.
Friday, September 18th--Because I couldn't sleep after a great night like that, I was up until past 3am talking with Christie. Problem with that, I had to be early. Dressed and ready to drive to the Woodlands to introduce our women's auxiliary HFC Friends to a new crowd. We signed up close to 40 new members. We stayed until noon and then finally made it for a lunch at 1pm. Knowing that I had to be in a cocktail dress and ready to entertain again by 6pm, I had to nap or I wouldn't make it. Nap and then it was time to get ready for the next event.
An Advisory Board member in Houston noticed that 52% of those we gave our assistance to are hispanic. She decided to make an introduction cocktail party to people of the Hispanic community in Houston to let them know of our work. We had over 150 people attending, including our awesome Honorary Chairs the Lopez Family (Jean, Steven, Mark and Diana), the "First Family of Tae Kwon Do." I spoke and so did Jean. We were then joined by a family, the Cruz family, who was assisted by HFC. Mom Angie cried trying to tell them about HFC's help. It was a wonderful evening to introduce more people to HFC. By the end of the evening, my feet throbbed so badly it wasn't even funny. So, of course, my wise decision was to allow Christie to influence me to head down to Allan's room and watch The Hangover until 2:30in the morning. Right, smart choice.
Saturday, September 19th--One week later, I was exhausted. Allan and I drove back to Dallas when the others flew back. I'm so thankful that Allan is our Chairman of the Board and one of my closest friends. He's a great guy who is committed to his family and Heroes for Children. We're lucky to have him on our side. That night, Jennifer and Allan came to our house for dinner to relax and let the dads watch the Texas Tech/UT game. Night ended early because we were so damn exhausted. Allan and I were barely functional at that point.
So, it was a long seven days. Today, we went to Six Flags for some much needed family time and I got a chance to nap. It's going to be a busy week at work (remember, Childhood Cancer Awareness Month all of September--keeps us busy!). Love it.