Don't Make Change too Complicated: Just Begin!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

October is Breast Cancer Month

Yesterday I went to the Quilt Bug in Rio Rancho. I brought with me a quilt that my mother had begun to make. (The below pic is not the quilt...that can be another post! ) My mom was a nationally known quiltmaker and quilt judge through the National Quilters Society. The quilt I brought in is one of many that I "inherited" that were left unfinished upon her passing.

My mom was a cancer survivor until her sudden passing. She fought 4 different cancers, including breast, for over 17 years. Throughout that time, she kept a very positive attitude and refused to believe the cancer would get the best of her. She , with the help of my dad, got the best medical care and her oncologist, Dr. Papalla, was her Dr. for all those years. She became like family to him and his family as he did in ours. He used my mom and her positive attitude to talk to many of his other patients to help them deal with their diagnosis of cancer and to help them to know that attitude and how you handle the diagnosis and ensueing trials is most of the battle. So, here I am in the quilt shop...flowy silk painter..... vroom vroom vroom cyclist.... who likes to be loose and free...contemplating tight lines and points and little stitches and just about getting a rash from thinking about it...telling the ladies I hate to sew and yes, I have a machine, but I forgot how to thread it! They put their hands on their hips and shook their heads! No they did not! This is an exaggeration...they were really very sweet and understanding as I told them this was one of many more to come. They loved the quilt and told me I was carrying out her legacy. They will help me and teach me and give me some discipline and I may even quilt my own quilt because I fell in love with a beautiful Asian quilt that I would certainly like to create! So, who knows?

Anyway, I am writing to you today to once again say, If you are a woman and have not gotten your mammo and annual exam done yet, turn off the computer and go make your appointments. Then KEEP your appointments. Suck it up and just do it. We all hate this. It is uncomfortable and we do not like people looking at our private things...but JUST DO IT> You could be saving your own life!

Here is a bit more information :

Here are 5 simple ways to celebrate Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM) in your own life courtesy of NBCAM:

Know your Risks: The risk of developing breast cancer is not the same for all women. Age is the single most important risk factor, although personal and family history, genetics, reproductive and menstrual history, weight , level of physical activity and alcohol consumption are also factors. Talk to your doctor about your risk factors.

Practice Healthy Habits: Women can reduce their risk if they eat healthy and exercise regularly. Begin making small changes in these areas and over time you will develop healthy habits.

Schedule your annual mammo and pap...yes, I know, I already said this! LOL But it is SOOOO .....important I will say it again!

Know there is hope: Thanks to early detection and treatment, more and more women are surviving breast Cancer....see above annual mammo and pap : )

Educate yourself: Empower yourself by learning as much about breast cancer as you can. is a year round resource that is available to you.

Another great resources is the American Cancer Society

If you are in Albuquerque, the American Cancer Society is a great resource in 2 locations:

10501 Montgomery NE at 260-2105

and at 900 Camino de Salud NE at 272-0228.

OR, you can go to the Lance Armstrong Foundation at for assistance and support!


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Cycling in the Dark, Cocoa Puffs and a Bike Musical

The Darth Vader Theme Continues...see below post.

I have decided that there are a few things that I like about cycling in the dark. I am sure my favorite Blogger Fatty (see side bar) will have a few things to say on this topic since he is doing a 24 hour ride this weekend...but as for me, my night blindness has its benefits.

My favorite thing about riding in the dark is that you cannot see the top of the oncoming hills...nor can you see the homeless man under the bridge...but that is another story! While hill climbing in the dark, you are lucky if you will see a slight "up" but you do not have a good idea where the top is because you cannot see it. You really have no idea HOW LONG your suffering will last. I really like this! It seems so much more easy going up when you do not know how long the suffering will last. I for one will do more night cycling!

Below you will find my favorite jersey , "She Loves Hills, She Loves Them Not" that speaks so clearly about how much I just love hills! Remember as a kid picking off the daisy petals and saying "he loves me, he loves me not." This is a Team Estrogen jersey. See side link. The second thing I love about cycling in the dark is that since I cannot see, I need to rely on my other senses more...but I am not quite sure how the smell of cocoa puffs will help guide me to the Bike Valet in the dark......I almost made a left hand turn into the General Mills cereal factory on my way.

Well, back at the Bike Valet, the riotous mood continued. I wondered if Fred was going to break into song singing Swanee River when he started to tap dance....or was it the soft shoe, but when I asked him, he told me he was creating a bike musical with a tap dance number in cleats! OK?

Just WHEN this musical is coming out is still a mystery to me, but stay tuned! The above is the poster for the musical.
In the midst of all the dance numbers, at the Bike Valet, we had many visitors once again and parked over 58 bikes on a cold day with a strong head wind and on a day on which they cancelled the balloons. Cyclists kept bringing us food and telling us stories and we saw a stream of parents who cycled in with their they human or pet...see below.

We had a fun visit with the Bike Cops who told us that there are 12 bike cops in Albuquerque...he told me that all their equipment including gun and handcuffs and whatever else weighed about 30 pounds! Anthony on the left was a racer before he became a cop and most of the bike cops still ride in their off time, he told me. Thanks guys for keeping us safe in the Open Space!

The pet type kids....came all harnessed in and we joked and asked where are their helmets?"
The little one was dressed as a little devil with horns and a tail.... and I thought he was probably wanting to see the Little Devil balloon...or perhaps....he was looking for "The She Devil!" (9/13/09 archive).
On this the last day of the Balloon Fiesta, we figured that in 8 days , we parked 2,000 bicycles at the Bike Valet! That saved a lot of gas, money and time for folks. It was just sooo easy to cycle in given the new extension to the North Diversion Channel and the new bridge over the arroyo that had been built and opened just for this event! Everyone was thrilled with this service and want to have it again next year....which we will.