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My Dad....

Sunday, June 19, 2011




William Mortimer West
January 15, 1927 ~ December 24, 2007

This collection of memories about my dad, Bill West, has been loving put together as a keepsake for my mother…. his bride of 61 years.

Through My Fathers’ Eyes….

As you read these tear stained pages, soon to be wedded with your own, our hope is that you know, Mother, how very much daddy, grandpa, Pop-Pop & Uncle Bill was and will always be loved by family and friends whom he touched and inspired every day of his 80+ years. From hero to father-figure to surrogate “big-brother” you will find, while reading these precious memoirs, a theme that’s woven itself from the earliest recollections through his very final days. Each holds examples of his infamous humor, unconditional love, inspiration and support. Some memories we share will surprise and delight you; some will tug at your heart and make you yearn to be together again.

He was a serious self taught man with wisdom that came from years of experience and yet he was silly, and fun. Yes, he could irritate the hell out of you too but only for a little while because you’ve come too realized just how far that 18 year old boy had come since you first met.

As a family we’ve all been appreciative that you both found each other and worked so hard to make a life together raising two sons and a daughter who in turn have had the great pleasure of giving back through the addition of grandchildren and great-grandchildren who will always honor and respect the wonderful parents you both strived to be.

John and Tom and I have looked through our father’s eyes at a world that he taught us to respect by just the way he lived. An honest businessman with integrity who delighted in what he did because he wanted to be constructive, not destructive. Dad was a proud patriarch who shared in the joy of all the successes of his family and their offspring’s. With his simple dedication to his vegetable and fruit gardens… he taught us to be lovers of things living and growing. His perseverance to take care of what he owned instead of just replacing it when it wore out was a lesson well learned and much appreciated. His silliness made every effort to lighten and entertain even the glummest of strangers and lives still through the laughter and humor we will always share as a family.

Dad had a wonderful sense of being able to spark your imagination and did so with many inventive family projects like “SWRD” and the group Lotto program he spearheaded. His thirst for knowledge wetted my appetite as well as his love of classical music and of course, his creativity…. from the first “Do-nothing” he built for me to the final boat he created for his great-granddaughter Stella and all the clever creations in-between.

I watched as dad’s gentleness grew through the years of joy and sorrow you both shared. I was able to strengthen my spiritual beliefs as we shared our perspective of life and death across Tom’s bed. I was often reminded how lucky a child I was to have him for a father as I watched his love of the grandchildren give him another chance to be the dad he may have wanted to be when we were growing up but didn’t have the time or patience for because he was working so hard to be a provider leaving you, mom, to be the nurturer and cheering squad for us kids. I watched him gently welcome dozens of cats who had no where else to go. And I remember the families he graciously invited into your home, giving them respite on their rough journeys. We all continue to benefit from dad’s willingness to share his business and knowledge with Michael and me. I’m especially thankful and privileged to have been present while Dad continued to evolve into a man of patience and support who portrayed a great strength through Tom’s illness and ultimate passing.

What a blessing to have watched my father fall deeper in love with my mother these last several years. Growing into a man who was unconditionally supportive as they both struggled to be excepting and strong through their trials and tribulations together…. truly a role model to all who had the pleasure of knowing him. What better legacy could he have wanted than to be a true hero to so many?

Mom, you knew dad best…. all his faults… all his triumphs. You will surely miss him the most, as it should be. Just know that we will remember and honor his life as he continues to live in all of us for we are so blessed to continue to look at life through our father’s eyes.

With love and appreciation your daughter…

“Keep a memory of me not as a King or as a hero,
But as a man fallible and flawed.” ~A quote from “Beowulf”

Happy Father's Day daddy... I miss you so much emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PATTILYNN224 7/5/2011 2:00PM

  Oh Linda, what a wonderful tribute to your dad. You have been much blessed to have him as a father. You are a wonderful daughter and the love you have spills out on the pages in your writing. It puts me to thinking about my dad and all that he is to me. Thank you for sharing.

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MEEBELO 6/22/2011 12:49AM

    Wha a wonderful tribute!

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LINOVER 6/20/2011 9:11PM

    This is a lovely and touching tribute to your dad! A wonderful gift for your mother!

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JOANNS4 6/20/2011 2:15PM

    What a nice tribute to your dad. Thank you for sharing a part of your life and heart with us.

Jo Ann


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PAWKETS 6/20/2011 10:51AM

    A beautiful tribute to your dad
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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 6/20/2011 8:12AM

    What a sweet tribute to your dad - I really enjoyed reading it!! This was my first father's day since my dad passed away and I wrote my own blog about memories of him. It's not the same as having him around but somehow it seemed to help me feel closer to him and after reading your words, I feel closer to you and your dad as well.

Have a great week!

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MADKAPKID 6/20/2011 12:41AM

    Linda you are such a lovely tender hearted friend. YOU are a blessing. YOU are also a gifter writer. This blog is such a truely wonderful tribute to your father. Your father and mother and love. Thank you for sharing this with us. It is very very touching. Have a joy filled day, Karen emoticon

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FRANCO1230 6/20/2011 12:39AM

    Absolutely beautiful! Thanks for sharing him with us.

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KAYTIE22 6/19/2011 10:58PM

    What a beautiful tribute to your father and what a caring and loving family. I know you can look back at the times you shared together with lots of smiles. Thanks for sharing these special moments with all of us.

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GRANPATTIE 6/19/2011 8:17PM

    Linda, this is an unbelievably beautiful tribute to your dad. I'm sure your mother's tear ducts were working overtime, and her heart was filled with love, pride and longing. It's not hard to tell that you had two wonderful parents. Their parenting skills shine very brightly through the person you've become! I'm grateful we're friends. You're one of my blessings.

Always count your blessings,
Pattie emoticon

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JILL313 6/19/2011 7:58PM

    This is such a wonderful tribute to your Dear Dad and how much he means to your Mom, you, your brother & all your GG & GGK. . .It is beautiful and touching and brought back memories of my Dear Dad and Mom. You are so fortunate to have had such a caring Dad who loved you very much and grew in patience and love the longer he lived. I hope your are celebrating Father's Day with your DH and family!

Hugs,

Jill

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7PASTORMIKE7 6/19/2011 3:53PM

    Thank you dear sister for sharing your precious dad with us !

God bless you
Pastor Mike

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YIGOBUTTERFLY 6/19/2011 3:25PM

    Thanks Speedy! What a tribute to your dad!

Jane on Guam

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0-60 in 12 months!!!

Thursday, June 09, 2011



Sparks is all about goal setting… originally my end goal was to lose 143 pounds. But I’ve realized that I don’t really have a weight goal in mind any more. Yes, I put one on my tracker but there is no finish line for me here at Sparkpeople. My journey will end when I die…. not when I reach 183 pounds, master 10,000 steps a day or when I fit into a size 14 again. My “Journey” (another fancy name for that four letter word DIET we all loath so much) is actually the path I’m walking every day of my life towards healthy living and emotional freedom.



When I joined SparkPeople and filled in the “My Goals” section on the front page it was clear to me, at the time, what I wanted to achieve at the end of my SparkQuest. And that was…

“To be healthy no matter what the scale reads.... tackle my arthritis so I have less pain in my joints and to lower my blood pressure and get off the $$$$ medications. Then I'll have more funds to do more FUN things with my sweet family.”

Surprisingly, those goals were being met just a few weeks into my initial journey and as a result I began living the life I had imagined I would once I reached my goals. Remembering Nike’s slogan……



Healthy living is a life style. Diets are not sustainable. There are no bad foods; it's all about portion control and living your life in the here and now. A good scale of success is the answer when you ask yourself... "Do I feel better than I did?" "Can I do more now with less pain?" "Am I proud of whom I am becoming?"



You bet your sweet bippy I am!!! I owe my success to God, my sweet hubby and with a lot of help from my Sparkfriends emoticon emoticonGOOOOOOOOOO Speedy emoticonAnd if I can YOU can too emoticon



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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LYNDALOVES2HIKE 6/15/2011 11:49AM

    I love this blog and the way you have framed things - wow!!

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MADKAPKID 6/11/2011 7:28AM

    I am so glad I found this. For some reason I didn't get a notice of your blog.

You, as always, put things Just right. You speak for many of us. I don't see an END to this adventure. IT is a day by day process to keep me healthy and more fit. IT will go on and on....as well it should.

You have made great progress on your journey. YOU are an inspiration.

Thank you for your incite. Happy Sparking and have a joy filled day, Karen emoticon

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STARTINGATSIXTY 6/11/2011 6:33AM

    emoticon emoticon

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KLASSIE 6/10/2011 2:38PM

    An inspiring message and you have the results to show. Thanks for sharing.

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HAPPYSOUL91 6/10/2011 10:01AM

    Linda, what a great job you have done. Love the "there is NO finish line" and really says it all.

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JILL313 6/10/2011 9:09AM

    Linda, Just Hearing About How you feel and think now is an amazing example that this is possible for all of us! I also am so proud of you and happy you're living the Life you've been wanting for years! I'm also in this for Life and at the rate I'm going I'll be where you are in a few years--LOL! Keep your great attitude and thank you for motivating me and many others.

Hugs,

Jill

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JOANNS4 6/10/2011 8:48AM

    emoticon emoticon

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JOANNS4 6/10/2011 8:40AM

    You have come so far in a year. Well said, you sized up what I believe being here means, our health and happiness and being able to face life's challenges better with sparks. Thank you.
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YIGOBUTTERFLY 6/10/2011 8:00AM

    Go, go, go! You are doing great!

Jane on Guam

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JINLYNN 6/10/2011 1:28AM

    Most excellent insight and words to remember each day.
Thanks for sharing.


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KSNANA2 6/9/2011 10:27PM

    "To be healthy no matter what the scale reads" -- I couldn't agree more! emoticon

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KAYTIE22 6/9/2011 10:15PM

    emoticon Really liked this blog. You have been doing great but most important, you have learned so much and that is really the key to meeting your goals and sticking with it.

Continued success and thanks for inspiring and motiving me and so many others!

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JAKEANDNELLIE 6/9/2011 7:56PM

    emoticon"I’m walking every day of my life towards healthy living and emotional freedom."
Those wise and profound words say it all for so many of us!
Thank you for sharing your wisdom!
Sheila

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WINTERRAIN 6/9/2011 6:21PM

    Great blog!

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GRANPATTIE 6/9/2011 5:59PM

    Linda, I'm so proud of you! Maybe some day I'll be there, too. Right now I need to get a move on. I've been sitting here not exercising, wondering why I'm not losing weight. I'd better get using the resistance chair system I bought on a more regular basis!!!

Thanks for being such a fine example for the rest of us.

Pattie emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KESTRIE 6/9/2011 5:05PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
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MISSY455 6/9/2011 4:57PM

    emoticon on your progress!
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ANNISSAT 6/9/2011 4:36PM

    emoticon

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Less IS More...

Wednesday, June 01, 2011



What a simple concept… we’ve all heard it and understand it but do we live by it? Can we embrace the idea and make it part of our every day? I’m going to make it my June mantra and at the end of 30 days I expect it will have impacted both my physical and emotional world in many positive ways. emoticon



Start with small steps that can lead to great rewards.



Remember to...... Talk less, learn more. Bark less, wag more. Eat less, more often. Spend less, save more. emoticon





Less alcohol, more clarity. Less salt, more vinegar. Less sugar, more fruit. More chewing, less choking. Less worry, more sleep. Less driving, more walking. Less anger, more laughter.






Today I start, "Sitting Less and Moving More" as June marks a new season reminding us that we still have time to continue our journey along the path to a healthier life style.



What will YOU be doing Less of for More results as Spring winds down and we swing into Summer??

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LAURACONNER 6/5/2011 12:01AM

    I love all you ADJectives - great spread and i so, so agree!!

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CHLOESUE 6/4/2011 7:24PM

    Linda...loved your blog.Very inspiring and great words to live by in so many different ways..Less It More!!
Congratulations on being a Motivational blog!
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KSNANA2 6/4/2011 5:56PM

    Just the motivation I needed today. Only been on Sparkpeople 1 week today, but every day I find something that really speaks to me. Just loved this one! Thank you! (You ARE talented!)

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YIGOBUTTERFLY 6/3/2011 8:32PM

    Great!

Jane on Guam

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KLH1982 6/2/2011 10:35PM

    My mantra this month is the exact opposite! But in a good way....more exercise! emoticon

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IOWAGRAMMA 6/2/2011 5:16PM

    Excellent! Love it, Linda. Jeannie

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JINLYNN 6/2/2011 5:02PM

    Great blog. What we say no to & have less of is no match for the more that awaits us when we reach our goals. Thanks for sharing and challenging me.

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MARSHASTAR 6/2/2011 9:59AM

    This is beautiful and inspiring. You are very creative and thoughtful.

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JOANNS4 6/2/2011 9:00AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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HARROWJET 6/2/2011 7:29AM

    emoticon

Judy emoticon

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CHYRL_C 6/2/2011 2:14AM

    emoticon emoticon That was right on the mark

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JILL313 6/1/2011 10:52PM

    OMG Linda, This is Wonderful and very creative-- you must be a graphic artist. . .I Love this Mantra--Less is More!! I'm going to write out my list of the lesses and mores that I want to work on in my Life. I just Love your great blog.

Hugs,

Jill

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TUBLADY 6/1/2011 10:20PM

    I loved this blog. You show such creativity and inspiration.
You reached many people with that simple saying, "Less is More".
I am going to borrow that and say it to myself . I need to practice less in certain areas. Not food but other things, I tend to want or acquire more than I need.
This shows why you were Honored as Member of the month for June.
Take care,
XXXOOO
Tisha
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MISSLISA1973 6/1/2011 9:47PM

    I love it!

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SUNNY2010 6/1/2011 9:30PM

    Linda, this is so awesome!!!! And so inspiring! What a great Spark person you are to spread such positivity!!!! Thank you for that!
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KESTRIE 6/1/2011 8:36PM

    Great mantra!!
emoticonit!!!
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RONIREDD 6/1/2011 8:12PM

    Awesome Blog! I think this is one of my favs! Thank you.

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GRANPATTIE 6/1/2011 8:06PM

    Hi Linda,

This is a great blog. We can probably all take lessons from this. It's sounds like a good mantra!

Thanks for posting,
Pattie emoticon

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HAPPYSOUL91 6/1/2011 4:06PM

    I really need to bark less and wag more!

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WINTERRAIN 6/1/2011 3:56PM

    Great blog! Lets see my list would be (and if you don't mind I'll be swiping some of yours)

Less yelling and more breathing
Less stress and more fun
Less sitting and more playing
Less doubt and more believing in myself
Less rushing and more taking my time

I hope you do an update at the end of the month!

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ERLYWA 6/1/2011 3:45PM

    Loooove your blog and it is perfect timing for me, as God has recently closed a door in my life but opened a window....an opening to a clean slate and a fresh start. So you really have me thinkimg about how to make the most of it....

Here are my less/more committments that I will focus on:
-Less self criticism, more self acceptance
-Less beating up on myself, more self forgiveness
-Less thinking of them as mistakes, more seeing them as life lessons
-Less excuses, more running!

Ohhhh, this is fun! I could go on and on but I better stick with a manageable number to focus on :)

I am smiling for the first time in days....thank you for a GREAT blog that I really needed!

Erika

Comment edited on: 6/1/2011 3:52:06 PM

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“HONK” if you love Sparkpeople…

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Tooting my own horn today as I recover from some very sore knees after participating in the Cancer Society's “Relay for Life” fund raiser this past weekend in Southern California. In a word it was emoticon I’m looking forward to next year and found that the experience has given me the spring board I needed to know that I can do more than I thought I could… given the opportunity to rest between laps and take it at my own pace. emoticon If there’s a place to sit and ice packs a-waitin’ my return I can actually walk a fair distance and get steps in that really add up and can be counted. Once around the park equaled a half mile so the seven trips I took plus a shortened care givers lap and a candle procession during the luminary lap equaled about five miles. emoticonGranted it took me 12 hours to complete but I did it!!!!! And now I plan to continue to “Relay for MY Life” by adding a walk around our neighborhood (approx. 1 mile) to my regular exercise program. emoticon



One of the reasons I joined Sparkpeople 11 months ago was to get in shape so I could participate more with my family emoticonMy next goal is to go to Disneyland with our grandkids. I believe this coming Fall would be a great time to let them play hooky and spend a non-touristy day with Mickey Mouse and friends. In the mean time we have a family camping trip planned for this July that I can really look forward to. emoticon Perhaps a fancy walking stick would make a great reward for my next 10 pound loss. emoticon

The relay was very successful and enjoyed by all.........

Amount raised by everyone at the event… $100,000.00
Amount our family contributed...……….. $1,000.00
Being able to walk during the event……. PRICELESS emoticon



Find a Relay near you and change your life forever emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KLH1982 5/26/2011 5:43PM

    I better be invited to that Disneyland trip!

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TUBLADY 5/24/2011 7:41PM

    Way to go. I only hope I can do as well as you did.
Our relay for Life is on June 19th. I was going to try to walk as fast as possible, but have had second thoughts and will pace myself so I can last as long as possible.
Very well done.
Congratulations on raising so much and your family contribution.
Take care.
Disney trip sounds like a winner.
i wish we had kids to go some more. I loved Disney, Land and World.
Tisha emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GRANPATTIE 5/24/2011 3:39PM

    I'm so proud of you!!!! I enjoyed reading of your experience and your hopes. Here's prayin' for you!

Pattie emoticon emoticon

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JILL313 5/24/2011 1:53PM

    Linda, You are Awesome and are making a real difference in your Life and Others. . .Woo Hoo to you! I'll honk for SP and my wish is to be able to do 1/2 of what you've accomplished so far. . .My "Hat" goes off to you my Friend. You're living the life that I've dreamed about as I also want to get Healthy so I can start enjoying things I haven't been able to do in many years but my Dream is to once again actively participate in Life! You Rock!!

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BETHV10 5/24/2011 12:22PM

    Awesome! emoticon

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FRANCO1230 5/24/2011 11:45AM

    emoticon

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CHYRL_C 5/24/2011 11:29AM

    emoticon emoticon

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KESTRIE 5/24/2011 10:44AM

    emoticon emoticon
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JECKIE 5/24/2011 9:08AM

    emoticon

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JAK106 5/24/2011 8:11AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GINNJEN2000 5/24/2011 4:33AM

    emoticon guess that would count as a honk.

Congrats on the race too what an accomplishment.

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HOTPINKCAMARO49 5/24/2011 3:33AM

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Why I Relay.........

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

I could not have participated in last years "Relay For Life" if my life had depended on it... this year, thanks to Sparkpeople emoticon I can and look forward to honoring all those who have given freely of their time and energy in preparation of this life affirming event.

One day. One night. One community. One Fight. emoticon

www.youtube.com/watch?v=b_LygIqNU5k&
feature=player_embedded


emoticonOur family will be honoring those who have past as well as those living with and having survived cancer while participating in this years' "Relay For Life" in Southern California. Look for our "STRIDING FOR LIFE" booth and get Lots-O-Free-Hugs emoticon

Relay For Life is a life-changing event that brings together more than 3.5 million people- to celebrate the lives of those who have battled cancer; remember loved ones lost to the disease; and fight back against a disease that takes too much. Won't you join us if you live in Orange County California. Or go online and find a location near you.

Event Date and Time
Saturday, May 21, 2011 11AM thru Sunday, May 22, 2011 11AM at
Central Park in Huntington Beach, California

What a great way to get some exercise and spend time with friends and family emoticon

Why I relay....... For my grama, for my daddy, for my brother Tom emoticon

www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWyqkFfCyqI

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TUBLADY 5/19/2011 7:37PM

    I am doing the Relay Race here in Oregon on June 19th.
I think it's the same cause. Ours is a 34 hours relay race.
I never dreamed last year that I could do this this year.
I know how happy you are.
Take care and I will be thinking of you on that date, and encouraging you on.
XXXOOO
Tisha emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JILL313 5/19/2011 4:39PM

    It's wonderful that you are paying tribute while you race for all your loved ones and many others. It's a great cause for a horrible disease. Enjoy the race and I thank you for doing this as there are people I've lost to cancer. . .
I also love your new stained glass background it is so different and beautiful!

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FRANCO1230 5/19/2011 11:47AM

    I relay for my dad. He passed May 21, 2002, from lung cancer at the age of 61. Funny, that your walk falls on the 9-year anniversary of his death. I don't get to participate every year, and, in fact, it has been a few years since I last did. But, yes, it is a wonderful experience! Have a WONDERFUL weekend at the relay!!!
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HAPPYSOUL91 5/19/2011 8:03AM

    It is such a pleaure to be walking for a cause. Glad you can participate this year

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YIGOBUTTERFLY 5/18/2011 10:53PM

    Two of my nieces have survived cancer as well as cousins.

So glad you are able to participate this year.

We do have a relay here on Guam!

Jane

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JAKEANDNELLIE 5/18/2011 9:21PM

    I Relay for my mom, aunts, and several other close friends and relatives. Ours is in June.
Congratulations for participating in a wonderful event.
Stay positive!
Sheila

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ACIMPEGGY 5/18/2011 8:43PM

    I'll be with you in Spirit! Susie's mom had it...great new page background. emoticon

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RONOSOF 5/18/2011 8:16PM

    Awesome! Love your stained glass too:) emoticon

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