Tuesday, January 17, 2012

More cancer fighting for less money, MLK lessons, catching dreams and giants

Five at five means 50 percent off for you

With only five days left, five of you have taken me up on my offer to honor a cancer patient, remember a lost loved one, and support leading edge cancer research--all for 50% less.

But they won't get the deal unless you help them: donate today.

Last year, a $100 donation was required to put a picture on my jersey to honor and remember those who have fought cancer, but until January 21, it's only $50. But only if I get 10 donations of $50 by then, so those five need your help to get their deal.

The photo-quality pictures on this jersey, professionally designed by my brilliant cousin, will be seen by thousands of riders and supporters as I ride the 200-mile route of the Pan-Mass Challenge in two days this August. Those who ride with me and line the route include cancer survivors, researchers, family and friends of those lost to cancer, the President of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, both Massachusetts senators (John Kerry and Scott Brown), and last year we were joined by Lance Armstrong.

This is your chance to
  • honor a loved one
  • save the life of someone currently fighting cancer at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
  • discover a new treatment for cancer through DFCI's leading edge research
Please, donate today.


What's up with getting up?
Yesterday, 3B got up and came into our bed at 2.27 a.m.

But who's counting? Me, actually, since he got in on my side and ended up pushing me all the way over to Mama's side while taking all the blankets. I'll never say that he never learned anything from Barky.

This morning, both kids decided it was a good idea to wake up at 6.00. It's all I can do not to scream at them, "Sleep now, for the love of all that's holy! You have no idea! Later in life, you will have children who will never let you sleep! You will become zombies, living in a half waking, half sleeping limbo! Save yourselves!"

And my kids would pat me on the head and say, "Nice man. Can you turn on the TV for us? Thanks."


Future's so bright...
Over the weekend, at 3B's behest, we had a playdate with a friend from preschool. He's been hounding us for weeks, but there were few obstacles, like Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year's, a trip to Vermont, Grammy breaking her ankle, and the fact that he and his friend are both in kindergarten, which kind of takes up their whole day.

However, Mama did find time this weekend, and we got together at a local store that offers free kids crafts every Saturday. Much more comfortable than scootering around outside for an hour which is what we did before that. After 3B got over his initial five minutes of shyness, he and his friend were stuck like glue, just like old times. It's fun to see him having such a good time with friends.

Also at his behest, we went to the Lincoln Memorial to see where MLK, Jr. delivered his I Have a Dream speech. It was moving to have 3B explain to me that MLK's dream was that everyone would be equal and then to watch the speech with him and explain as 3B asked what MLK was talking about.

And while a trip to the Lincoln Memorial and the engraving on the steps where MLK stood that commemorates his speech is always inspirational, Martin's birthday is in the winter. And an open-front marble building isn't a cozy spot on a windy day. So, by the time we got there, the kids were frozen, hungry and thirsty.

However, we did walk around the outside of the memorial to the south side, the leeward side of the building where the sun warmed us. Until, that is, the kids both jumped on my belly as I was lying down and bounced on me like I was Secretariat coming through the final turn. That's 80 pounds of bouncing children on my abs for those of you keeping score at home.

That was all forgotten as soon as 3B backed up and rabbit punched me three times in the cojangles.

Hey, if you don't want another sibling, just tell me.

Apparently MLK's message on nonviolence didn't quite saturate 3B's being. Maybe next year. Then again, my response--yelling and a time-out--weren't probably my proudest moment ever, so perhaps we both have something to learn.

Apparently Jewel also has more to learn about racial tolerance. When I asked her later if she liked the Lincoln Memorial, she said, "No. I didn't like the statue."

"Why didn't you like the statue?"

"It was too white."

To her credit, I think she means that on the south side, with the sun shining on the white marble, it was too bright. To our credit, we brought her sunglasses and offered them to her about 37 times, but she's two and can't give "yes" for an answer.


Catching dreams and giants
The next day, we had a wonderful time at the National Children's Museum Launch Zone in National Harbor. We made dreamcatchers in honor of MLK's speech and created valentines that will be sent to veterans as our service project to honor MLK's work. We met our friends there as planned and were happily surprised to find a friend of 3B's from kindergarten there.

The kids loved the yarn, the beads, the flowers, the coloring, the gluing and, when that was all done, the wall-sized chalkboard, the beehives (demonstration only, no actual bees) and beekeepers outfit and, of course, the grilled cheese and french fries next door.

But the big hit of the day was the statue that was moved from Haynes Point to National Harbor. The kids had a blast pretending to be eaten, pulling out the giant's teeth, and just running in the sand and scrambling on rocks along the shore.

Papa Bradstein will ride 200 miles across Massachusetts in two days to help fight cancer. Please support his ride.

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