Sunday, November 09, 2008

Free Chemo Pillows

The great Jim Miller, a dear friend of the family, passed away this summer from a long bout with cancer. He followed his wife, Julee, who'd succumbed to the same villain a few years earlier. Then last week, Robert Little, a friend whose family I've gotten to know and love through Fiber of Her Being, met the same fate. And we all know about Barack Obama's grandmother dying of cancer last Monday, the day before she saw her grandson make history.

It makes me sick.
I'm SICK of my loved ones getting cancer.
I'm sick of my loved ones' loved ones getting cancer.

I'm going to do three things about it. First, I'm making a donation to the American Cancer Society for their work in preventing and curing different forms of cancer. Second, I'm making a donation to the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, for treating and curing so many of my friends and family in East Texas. And third...

I'm giving away FIVE FREE CHEMO PILLOWS during the month of November. If I can't rid the world of this terrible scourge, I can damned well comfort some of the people who have to fight it.

Chemo (or Comfort) Pillows are 14" x 14" pillows that I personalize for the recipient. The pillows feature pictures of the patient's family and loved ones (that includes pets!) and motifs and colors that they like. They are emotionally comforting and physically soft, and give people something to look at and think about while they go through chemotherapy sessions. And as two people have said, they make the recipients remember what -- and whom -- they are fighting for.
I'll be making one free pillow each for the first five people who contact me through the end of November, 2008. I'll charge you $10 shipping, but the labor and materials are on me. For more details, please see the Comfort and Chemo page of my website.
Please take me up on it. I feel the need to do SOMETHING.
(Robert's Pillow)
(Jim's Pillow)

Monday, November 03, 2008

Caps to Cap-Haitien: Before and After

My friend Lucy sent me a link to a very worthwhile project today. The Caps to Cap-Haitien Project is an initiative to send homemade knit caps for newborn babies to Haiti, as a part of a larger effort to create and distribute safe birthing kits. In addition to the little stocking caps to keep the babies' heads warm, the kits contain a plastic sheet, hand sanitizer, and a sterilized string and razor blade! As someone approaching labor myself, this seems like the epitome of "the bare minimum" necessary for a safe birth.

As it happens, I had thrown away a bunch of my husband's old T-shirts last night. There were so many that I had to cram them into the bedroom trash can with my foot. This morning, when I got Lucy's email, I took them back out.

The pictures show the before and after of the project. It took about three hours total to make forty little caps, and it did my heart good. I hope Paddington is willing to give up his hat for some little Haitian baby. If worse comes to worst, I can make him another.

Check out the Mama to Mama site, which is coordinating the homemade caps effort. There you can find a very easy pattern and instructions for making your own caps. I think this is worth the trouble, since it's barely any trouble at all, and could save some little baby's life.