Friday, October 1, 2010

"Be Someone's Paula"

Sister-in-law’s legacy was to inspire others by Kate Jackson, for the Patriot Ledger

"Small stones engraved with the phrases “Never Give Up” and “Strength” are scattered on the sill of the bay window that overlooks her garden. Her wildflowers bloomed early this year, and it seems as though the season hurried just so she could see them one last time. Everything seems hurried, though, as my sister-in-law Paula lies dying in the next room, given two weeks to live at age 48.

Her husband and two daughters take turns holding her hands. Her oldest sits on the floor next to her bed, asking questions and writing down the answers for the days ahead when she’ll crave her mother’s advice (and cooking): “How do you make your pasta sauce?” “What do I do if I fall in love with someone who treats me poorly?” Paula, a natural teacher, answers every last one. Each day she perseveres, even as ovarian cancer ravages her insides."


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Classy Awards

If you like TheSAMFund please nominate them for small charity of the year -

Just go to, click on the first tab (Boston), and fill out the required fields (zip code is 02111).

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

NEW TheSAMFund Blog • Join the Network

When I got 'it' - I was 29, not living check to check anymore, could support my car, apartment, buy clothes, I wasn't living in the lap of luxury, but I was completely financially independent and it meant a lot.

Then I got sick. . . THANKFULLY I had the endless support of my parents, financially, emotionally, but I saw firsthand how cancer would debilitate finances if things were only a little bit different. Disability simply does not cover monthly expenses and prescriptions.

One year after I was done with my treatment - I read about Sam and TheSAMFund and the mission to raise money for young adult cancer survivors to help with their financial needs. I've been hooked ever since. This is an important cause - and as an added benefit - I've met a lot of other young adult cancer survivors as a result. Which, really helps.

Join the Network of young adult cancer survivors - (from TheSAMFund) -

"Cancer is the gift that keeps on taking.

We all know that financial struggles post-treatment are, unfortunately, nearly universal within the young adult survivor community. Savings are depleted during treatment. Health insurance premiums take up almost an entire paycheck. Medical bills pile up. Trips to the pharmacy can mean hundreds of dollars in co-pays each month. And so on… That’s why we created The SAMFund back in 2003: to remove some of these barriers and help young adults regain their footing as they move forward after treatment ends."

But that’s not the only struggle young adults face. One of the most common experiences we hear from young adult survivors -- and, to be honest, one that I experienced myself -- is the feeling that you are the only person on the planet who has gone through cancer. Having a different perspective than your peers. Feeling decades older than everyone around you. Wondering if there’s anyone around you who “gets it.”

So, The SAMFund decided to do our part to tackle this barrier as well, and make it a tiny bit easier for young adults to make in-person connections -- and realize that there is a community of others who have gone through similar experiences. Thanks to a start-up grant from The Lenny Zakim Fund several years ago, we developed a new program to help young adult cancer survivors, caregivers, friends and family members meet one another. "

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Cervical C Survivors/Patients Sought for Media Interviews

Our friend Tamika Felder is looking for cervical cancer survivors/patients, those with HPV and family members who have lost a loved one to cervical cancer for media interviews in NY, NJ or CT. Please send her an email if you're interested: Thanks!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Will Ferrell Sunscreen and Cancer for College

Hilarious - Will Ferrell is the Paul Newman of Sunscreen. Okay, not really, but you've go to love the packaging, spoofing the old Coppertone baby AND the fact all proceeds from sales go to the Cancer for College Fund. With three types of lotions Sexy Hot Tan, Sunstroke and Forbidden Fruit, there's one for the sun goddess in all of us.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Free Cancer Sucks Button

Pardon the profanity - but sometimes it just is what it is.
Get yourself a free button here. Make a donation and get some for your friends too!

Other News: Today is the birthday of TheSAMFund!

Friday, July 9, 2010

New Journal Entries

Pop on over to the to see the new journal entries. . .

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Now Accepting Applicants for Grants and Scholarships The SAMFund

Hey - all you young-adult cancer survivors!!!

The SAMFund proudly provides financial assistance to young adults as they move forward with their lives after cancer. With our support, survivors are empowered to achieve their educational, professional and personal goals.

Grants and scholarships provided by the SAMFund cover a wide range of post-treatment financial needs, such as (but not limited to): rent and utilities, car and health insurance premiums, graduate tuition, vocational training, student loan repayment, current and residual medical bills, fertility-related expenses, gym memberships and transportation costs. Click here to see our categories of funding, which includes the maximum amount we will award in each one. To date, we have awarded a total of $500,000 to more than 250 individuals across the country. Click here to read recipient stories and updates.

The Deadline is July 12th - 5:00pm, EST

Sunday, June 6, 2010

It's here!

Happy National Survivors Day!

Friday, June 4, 2010

National Survivors Day

What? There's a National Day for Survivors? Well, well. Sounds like a good excuse to buy myself a present.

For this occasion, leave your mark at

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


I've been doing one small painting a day for a year. Yesterday was my anniversary and the Patriot Ledger did a fantastic article complete with photos.

When I was interviewed, the journalist asked if having cancer had anything to do w/the painting a day project.

When you get the Big C - everything thereafter is kind of related to having it and getting over it. Somehow. I declined this correlation though because sometimes it's nice to forget.

Okay, that was a big contradiction. What I'm trying to express is, after thinking about it, everything is a product of survival. Because it's the little things, the things you get to do everyday. The perspective you gain, the ability to be able to leave your mark. . .

Monday, May 3, 2010

Alluring Artists - Hull

The Big C Visual Journal will be mentioned on the local cable station's new show, "Hull Alluring Artists." I was so nervous, I've never been interviewed before let alone for television. The stardom definitely went to Brie, the dog's, head though - she kept flitting in and out looking for her fifteen minutes of fame or more peanut butter (her pacifier), not sure which, probably the latter now that I think about it.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The months I didn't have it

The spring, these are the months I got better - - and it was fitting, it was springtime - these months are not marked by anniversaries, big or small in my mind and it's easy to forget about the big c visual journal project, but then I'm suddenly reminded - so here goes!