My Dance Marathon Giving Page

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My Dance Marathon Giving Page

What is Dance Marathon?

Dance Marathon is one of the largest student-run organizations at the University of Iowa. Over the past 20 years, Dance Marathon has raised almost 13 million dollars to benefit over 400 families who have been treated at the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital Pediatric Oncology Unit. During my third year at the University of Iowa, I have been busy partaking in events to raise awareness and money for pediatric cancer. On February 7th and 8th, Dance Marathon culminates with the 24-hour BIG Event to celebrate the children’s fight against cancer and remember those who have lost their battle. During the 24 hours, I will not sit, have caffeine, or sleep, all in honor of these courageous kiddos battling pediatric cancer.

Why You Should Donate

Dance Marathon provides:

  1. Emotional and financial support for families and patients in the cancer unit
  2. Educational resources for diagnosed children
  3. Comfort Kits containing parking voucher, gas voucher, and meal voucher plus other care items for families
  4. Child Life Assistants to aid in the holistic treatment of the patients
  5. Technology in patient rooms such as flat screen TV’s, DVD players, Play Station 2’s, and laptops
  6. Several fun family events throughout the year

In February 2010, Dance Marathon, pledged five million dollars over the next seven years to the building of the new University of Iowa Children’s Hospital, and now, four years later, grounds have officially been “broken.” When completed in March of 2016, the new Children’s Hospital will be a great center of growth and aid for the state of Iowa. Through the five million dollar donation, Dance Marathon has the honor of the eleventh floor being named “The University of Iowa Dance Marathon Pediatric Cancer Center.” Dance Marathon is excited to see what wonderful things will come out of the hospital, both for the Dance Marathon families and the children of the entire state. 

My Connection with and Journey in Dance Marathon

When I started with Dance Marathon my freshman year of college, I got involved because I loved kids and it was a huge organization to get into and meet new people. Then, my Grandpa Bob had a cancer relapse, and my work for DM took on a whole new meaning. He passed away that Winter, so my experience at that Big Event was an emotional one, and I shed more than a few tears as I took part in memorial services in remembrance of my Grandpa. With the physical and emotional strain, and without a whole lot of friends with me, I almost wasn’t able to make it through the Big Event, and had to spend some time in the first aid room. But my family sent me support via messages and phone calls, and I was able to get back on my feet in time to cut my hair and donate it to Locks of Love, get some visits from friends, and dance through power hour. The experience really changed my life. 

The next year, I was determined to get more involved, and get my friends into it. I became a Family Representative , which means that I got to write letters of correspondence and support to one of the families helped by DM. I raised over $500 dollars that year, and had one of my best friends at the Big Event with me. We had a great time meeting and playing with the family our group was dancing for. 

This year will be another emotional Big Event for me, because we lost my Great Grandpa Chuck to lung cancer this holiday season. He was an important patriarch in my family, and we miss him very much. With his loss and a lot of other things going on in my life this past semester, I wasn’t able to get as much fundraising done as I would have liked, and now I’m scrambling to make enough to get to the Big Event–we need at least $400 each. I can’t imagine not dancing in honor of the family I’ve lost, or even the family I’ve watched fight and survive (we have a lot of those too), but I need help! 

How to Donate

It’s easy! If you can, please visit my Online Giving Page. It’s the easiest and quickest way to donate. If you can’t donate at this time, or would like to help in another way, please consider sharing this link on your various social media platforms. Everything helps! THANK YOU!

Introducing My Coffee Mug Collection!

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As I’ve mentioned before, and as the above title probably makes rather clear, I collect coffee mugs. I have a TON. My apartment has a double cupboard completely dedicated to coffee mugs, almost all of which are mine, and we’re starting to run out of room. In fact, I think I may have a problem. 

Nah, it’s not a problem. I love coffee and drink it on the daily, so why not invest in super awesome coffee receptacles? They’re practical, and can totally function as are pieces too in a lot of ways. 

So, I’ve decided that once or twice a week, I’ll pick a mug to feature here, along with a description of the beverage and/or meal I had at the time, and of course the story behind that given mug. They will be appearing in no particular order other than that in which I use them. This way I might actually find out exactly how many I have now anyway! 

So, without further ado, I present you Coffee Mug #1: Melody Malone!

Melody Malone

 

As many of you probably know, this fantastic mug is an homage one of my favorite Doctor Who characters, River Song, and her message to the doctor via a private eye who-dun-it paperback. I saw it online and shared it on my Facebook, and ended up getting it as a gift from my father, who lives in California. It was a great surprise! This morning I used it for my coffee (treated with a little almond milk and tiny touch of sugar) to go with the pancakes my roommate made for breakfast; she said they had too much vanilla, but I thought they were delicious. 

She broke up with me

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My girlfriend finally broke up with me tonight. 

I don’t mean finally like “I couldn’t wait for this to happen and now it finally has,” but finally as in “it’s the end.” 

We went through a rough patch, but we had talked, worked on things, took space. I was so ready to work to make it work, and so sure that we would. I kept telling my friends that we had made it through the hard time and things were so much better now and improving all the time. I guess for her it was already too late. She acknowledges that things have been better this past month, but doesn’t think we can keep it up in the new semester when life gets crazy again. Quit while we’re ahead I suppose. 

It’s late. It hurts. And I dunno how I’m supposed to sleep. My Facebook relationship status is hidden and my profile picture changed. Couldn’t bring myself to take it away completely. 

We’ve been together for over a year, but the anniversary of the day she asked me to make it official and my coming out was coming up early this February. I’m so sad that I won’t get to celebrate that with her. 

We’re determined to keep being best friends. I couldn’t bear to lose her completely, but this is going to be so hard. I love her very much. 

Do We Have To Be Offended By Everything

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So eloquently put. Good read!

The Belle Jar

You are a smart person and you pride yourself on your critical thinking abilities and general good taste.

You read or hear or watch something and find yourself smiling, nodding in agreement, maybe even laughing out loud. This, whatever this happens to be, is genius. Whoever created it somehow articulated exactly what you’ve been thinking but have never been able to put into words. Nothing has ever been more perfect.

You share what you’ve just read, heard or watched with your friends, expecting that they’ll be just as blown away by the insight and hilarity as you were. And some people do get it, so you high five to celebrate your mutual intelligence and awesomeness. But then a few of your friends start to voice misgivings, and then someone comes right out and says it:

This isn’t cool.

Here’s the thing – you’re not a bad person. In fact, you…

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I made coffee cake!

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Ingredients

Ingredients

Classes start up again on Tuesday, so I’m going to need to be stocked up on school supplies and groceries and stuff, but especially on coffee and breakfasts to get me going on those early mornings. So today, I baked coffee cake from scratch.

Baking collage

Look at that messy, gooey goodness. Yeah. 2 cups of sugar, three egg whites, and three sticks of butter among other things. It’s definitely not good for me, but it’s delicious. Just look at it.

Coffee Cake

And, this may or may not surprise you, but it goes great with coffee.

With Coffee

Anybody want the recipe? 😀

Dear Joss Whedon:

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WHO GAVE YOU THE MOTHER-FUCKING RIGHT???!?

In the past several months, I’ve been watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer on Netflix with my girlfriend, since it’s pretty much her favorite thing of all time and she wanted to share it with me. I used to make fun of her for being so into such a silly 90’s fiasco, but I was pulled in and am now totally hooked. We watch it all the time, and we just finished Season 6 out of 7. 

SEASON 6 WAS AWFUL. Gut-wrenching. Painful. I cried. And cried. And cried. How dare you get your audience so tied up in the lives of those characters and then spend an entire God-forsaken season putting them through Hell, give them one little ray of hope, and then literally murder that hope? This is cruel and unusual, and I really think the only thing for it is to just retro-actively end the show after Season 5, as it should have been. 

Thank you, have a nice day. 

Evil Willow

Dangers of Fracking

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Fractivist Sticker

 

So I have this sticker on my laptop, a take-away from the road trip I took last year with some friends to Washington, D.C. for a big environmental rally in protest of the Keystone XL Pipeline. I was so excited to get to go on this trip; I was really involved in environmental action and volunteering in high school through my school’s ecology club, but haven’t found the same outlets and don’t have the same time to commit now that I’m in college. It felt really good to be a part of such a big movement that I really care about.

Rally

 

I like the sticker, because it often prompts friends and strangers to ask what it means, but I haven’t always done the best job of eloquently explaining hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) and its dangers and the other complicated issues surrounding it. But never fear! I just found this great website that explains it really well and uses a visual that I think would appeal to a lot of people in the general populace. Especially now that there’s talk of fracking in Iowa, I hope to have a lot more conversations about this issue. Check out the website if you’d like know more!