I just keep raising that goal and we just keep meeting it.  We’ve now raised over $23,500 and are well on our way to exceeding our $25,000 event goal. Not only are we doing well, but St. Baldrick’s events across the country are breaking all previous fundraising records. Every time another million dollars is raised, there’s a short piece in the “Head”lines section of the website’s homepage, featuring shavees or researchers or kids affected by cancer. A photo of Braedan and Austin was used to announce the $5 million mark and we’d been planning to take a picture of eleven kids with shaved heads at our event on Sunday the 11th to announce the $11 million mark … but they reached it yesterday! They’re assigning us another number for Sunday, well into the future.

But the kids and I are in the $12 million picture, taken last week at the Bluffton event, which just appeared on the website, a mere 24 hours after the $11 million picture! Austin (in green hat) and I are over to the right and Braedan is hidden right under the number 12. .

Tomorrow is Green Hair Day for the shavees at both boys’ schools, so I’ll be outside spraying away (nothing like breathing in hairspray fumes first thing in the morning).  It’s a nice way to raise awareness of childhood cancer and St. Baldrick’s among the staff, students and families, as well as a chance to celebrate the bravery and generosity of so many young people. The kids have really taken this and run with it. I think we parents all struggle with finding the right opportunities to engage our kids in meaningful giving.  I know I’ve tried to involve the boys in charitable endeavors, especially during the holiday season, but they’re often kept so separate from the actual beneficiaries of their kindness that it loses some of its impact. Participating in St. Baldrick’s gives them a chance to really DO something tangible and visible, to make a true difference in a way they can feel and understand.

Not to mention, the events are fun! I’m so looking forward to both Sunday and the AJ Rocco’s event the following week (and, of course, I’m looking forward to Monday when it’s all over and all I have to do is write thank you notes and mail in our checks!). But for now, we’ve got three days of nonstop St. Baldrick’s: Tomorrow morning, I’ll go in and talk to the three second grade classes about childhood cancer (I’ll use my old weeds in the garden analogy), highlighting the impressive engagement of eight of Braedan’s peers. Then in the afternoon, Austin and I will go down to Rainbow, where the doctors and nurses who usually shave at AJ Rocco’s will be shaving instead with the young patients as their audience.  That one should be moving, to say the least. Then Saturday morning is the pancake breakfast at my nephew Van’s day care. Have any of you seen that enormous sign out in front of First Baptist on Fairmount and Eaton? I came across it on a run the other day and was stopped in my tracks by those three gorgeous faces, who look nothing like my current shaggy little beasts.  And then, of course, Sunday.

And then, … rest? Relaxation?  Nah, there’s always something else coming down the pipeline …

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