When Life Gives you Lemons

Those of you who have followed my Working Mother Magazine blog the last couple of years know that I couldn’t get through September without sharing that it’s National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. This designation has only been around a few years, but I’ve written about it the last two because I have a son who was diagnosed with cancer at the age of five.

Thanks to a lot of prayer and two surgeries, he has been cancer free for almost six years. I’m thanking God for his remission. His great grandfather died of the kind of cancer with which he was diagnosed.

I have been volunteering for the American Cancer Society for over a year now and am also the captain of my church’s Relay for Life team Angels for a Cure.  Although the American Cancer Society is a great organization and I love Relay for Life, there’s another organization that’s dear to my heart because of my son.

It’s Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF). Alex is a little girl who was diagnosed with a childhood cancer known as neuroblastoma before she turned a year old. She began having lemonade stands to raise money to fight cancer when she was four and lost her battle with cancer when she was eight.

ALSF has a ton of things going on this month that I want to share. First of all, we all need to rock the yellow on National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day, Thursday, September 13. I look awful in yellow so I’m going to have to search for something to wear. Maybe I can find one of those t-shirts that sports a huge smiley face on it from the seventies.

This next one will be easier for me, buying a paper lemon icon for a buck at Auntie Anne’s Pretzels in September and getting a coupon for a buck off my next purchase of a pretzel and a drink. I can do that one just fine.

If you want to do the fundraiser that started it all for ALSF, register a special Strawberry Shortcake Lemonade Stand with ALSF in September and American Greetings will donate $50. You can also get a strawberry-lemonade recipe, Strawberry Shortcake stickers and a chance for more prizes.

Nearly 500 Old Navy stores are supporting ALSF with their own lemonade stands this weekend so pick up some lemonade or a paper lemon for a donation. That’s another tip I can handle.

ALSF sponsor Volvo will donate $10 for every new Volvo sold and in September will match every donation made to a member of Team Lemon. Team Lemon is ALSF’s national athletic program. Participants run, walk, bike or swim to reach personal athletic goals while raising money to help kids with cancer.

Here’s a few more ways to help out. Buy a floral bouquet from Teleflora’s Sunny Day Pitcher Collection and Teleflora will donate 10 percent of the revenue to ALSF. Rosa Mexicano locations across the country will donate $10 to ALSF for each $100 gift card purchased in the month of September.

Lastly, at Culver Studios on Saturday, September 29, 2012, Neil Patrick Harris, David Burtka and Jimmy Kimmel will host the L.A. Loves Alex’s Lemonade Culinary Cookout with some famous chefs to raise funds and awareness for ALSF.

Now, that’s a list! I’m sure we can all find one or two things we can do to raise money and awareness for childhood cancer this month. I’m also sure everyone will be wondering why I’m wearing yellow next Thursday so I’ll be able to tell them. Have a great weekend and God Bless!

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