Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I am blogging because I just registered online for the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life.
When I registered online, I was issued my own personal fundraising web page. It explains what Relay For Life is and why I chose to get involved. My web page also has my fundraising goal and how much money I’ve raised so far.

Please visit my page, and while you’re there....why not make a donation to the American Cancer Society?  Or better yet, sign up to join us for the event!  It’s going to fall on my 30th birthday weekend and I cant think of a better way to celebrate!

Your donation will help the American Cancer Society create a world with less cancer and more birthdays - the amount you donate will count towards my fundraising goal.
Thank you so much for your help - I will keep you updated on my progress!


Thursday, September 15, 2011

ok, I'm using my blog for propaganda today, but hey, its my blog!

After an amazing weekend at the American Cancer Society Mid-South Headquarters, I'm committed more than ever to funding research and all the things needed to finding a cure for cancer.  Most cancers are preventable, but we need to get the word out.  There is a group called the ACS Cancer Action Network (or ACS CAN) and they are the friends who STAND up on THE HILL and keep the decision makers straight.  They are making budget cuts again and cancer research along with the auxiliary medical things that affect us are on the line.  We can make a difference!  Please read below about how you can get involved.  (BTW, I have a few ideas of things that we could cut....that aren't saving lives!)

ACS CAN General Email Header

We've all heard it, friends.

Congress has created a “supercommittee” whose job is to find more than one trillion dollars in cuts to the budget. And, they’ve re-started work on a budget for next year that will cut billions.

But, what about things like cancer research and early detection programs that are working -- that are saving lives?

Who will protect such lifesaving funding from this mandate for cuts?

Friends, it's up to us. It's up to you and me and volunteers just like you across the nation, working together with ACS CAN to ensure that the voice of cancer patients is heard loud and clear on Capitol Hill.

In just one minute - yes, only one minute - you can do three things to make sure we're all ready to stand up and fight for cancer patients. Can you spare one minute right now to help us continue saving lives from cancer?

We know that nearly half of all cancer deaths could be prevented through prevention and early detection. We know that research can eliminate suffering and death from cancer. And we know the impact of significant cuts on American lives could be devastating.

But what we don't know yet is if Congress is ready to stand up and fight for this lifesaving funding. These are tough budget times for our country and some cuts do need to be made, but it shouldn’t be to the research and prevention programs that are saving lives from cancer every day.

Please take one minute right now. It's easy, quick and doesn't cost you a penny. But the lives you can save - men, women and children - are priceless.

Thank you,

Brian Rubenstein
Associate Director, Grassroots at ACS CAN

P.S. We're hearing that a key U.S. Senate committee might vote on a budget as early as next week. So, please act now.


Tuesday, September 6, 2011


My favorite Ouachita memories involve these ladies:

While the memories in Frances Crawford East and Maddox flood my mind, its the 7 years since graduation that are the most meaningful.

I could write about the posters we made for serenades in the courtyard, getting ready to go on TWIRP dates, packing to go on outings with boys we barely knew, trash schedules, late night trips to the ER, Friends running on our TV all night, some boy showing up at our door with a green frog floatie for our birthday, lighting candles when we weren't supposed to (sorry, Keldon!), watching April's dad hang Ansel Adams pics in our "living room" and wondering if she was related to the artist, a road trip to Durant complete with black and white film, helping Brooke poof her hair for a special Valentine's date, Arby's runs on Saturdays and watching Lifetime movies...  but I''ll leave the specific details of those days out!

Instead, my favorite moments with these girls are showers, weddings, pageants, cookouts, big girl sleep overs (meaning we go to be early and get up early), and new babies.

The special time we shared in 71998 created lifelong friendships.  I remember the day I called each one of these girls in March of 2008 to tell them I had cancer.  It was so difficult.

April was in a dressing room trying on dresses for Lindsey's wedding.
Lindsey was on a Friday night date with her soon to be husband.
Lacey and I played phone tag for a couple days.
Brooke and I were both driving down the highway.

I'm not sure what happened in the moments after I hung up with each of them, but I do know the moments I shared with them, they were calm, understanding, and sympathetic.  Reactions I so desperately needed at the time.

I remember getting a care package full of goodies for chemo and stuffed with feathers for packing (that book still has feather hairs and glitter in the binding).  I remember walking in to my appointment where I found out my treatment routine and Lacey's mom was standing in the lobby of the building to go in with me.  I remember April and Derek picking me up to drive to Dallas for Lindsey's wedding and I slept the whole way there and back.  I wouldn't have missed that weekend for anything, but I was too weak to drive myself.  Then, there was the one chemo weekend that my mom and dad couldn't come in town and Lacey came to stay with me.  We ate Burger King and watched every "Love comes....." movie in the series.  We laughed and cried together through each one and sweet Matt let us have our own time together.

And, I will forever cherish being asked this past spring to come to come to Cabot Relay for Life and share my story.  I watched Brooke and Robert lift an offering of praise and then we walked hand in hand in silence during the luminaria lap.  It was a truly special moment.

These girls are like sisters to me and Ouachita gave me that.

I remember every year when I worked in Admissions and we would gather with Mrs. Frazier with the housing folders of every new student and the comment was always made "no pressure, we're just helping them pick who will be in their wedding".  While it was meant as a proverbial tongue-in-cheek joke, it was true.

The people you meet at Ouachita really are your lifelong friends.  They are the people you call when you are in your darkest places and who you rejoice with in life's greatest victories.

My greatest Ouachita memories are being made right now!


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Gov. Beebe declares Sept. 6 as Ouachita Baptist University Day

August 31, 2011 Gov. Mike Beebe, the keynote speaker for Ouachita Baptist University’s opening chapel of the academic year, presented a proclamation declaring Sept. 6, 2011, as Ouachita Baptist University Day in the state of Arkansas.

The Aug. 30 chapel service served as a kickoff event for Ouachita’s 125th anniversary celebration throughout the fall semester. Sept. 6, 1886, marked the first day of classes for Ouachita Baptist College, with an inaugural fall enrollment of 166 students. During the ensuing 125 years, the university has grown to an enrollment of approximately 1,600 students from more than 30 states and 40 nations.

The proclamation presented by Gov. Beebe to Ouachita President Rex M. Horne, Jr., notes that Ouachita “has operated continuously since 1886 to meet the educational needs of students from Arkansas, other states in our nation and numerous countries around the world.”

It adds that Ouachita “offers a strong curriculum with four bachelor’s degrees in more than 50 majors of Business, Christian Studies, Education, the Fine Arts, the Humanities, the Natural Sciences and the Social Sciences.”

Emphasizing that Ouachita “is celebrating the 125th anniversary of its founding as a learning community dedicated to fostering a love of God and a love of learning,” the proclamation concludes by encouraging “fellow citizens to recognize and congratulate the trustees, administration, staff, students and alumni for 125 years of service to higher education in Arkansas.”

Introducing Gov. Beebe to the chapel crowd, President Horne said, “How blessed we are today to begin our celebration of our 125th year with the governor of the state of Arkansas to come and be our speaker. I speak to you so often about being a difference maker. Here is one before us today who is truly a difference maker. … He is a man of service, now in his second term being elected by the citizens of Arkansas as our 45th governor.”

In his chapel address, Gov. Beebe detailed the biblical account of Queen Esther who had “been placed by God in that position for a time such as that” to intervene on behalf of the Jewish people who were scheduled to be slaughtered.

Noting that going before the king without an invitation “was so taboo that it might put you in peril; wife or no wife,” Gov. Beebe added that Esther declared, “If I perish, I perish.”

Citing her courage and leadership, Gov. Beebe said, “She either had to do it or God would replace her and somebody else would do it. For all of the peril, she beseeched the king and was successful.”

Applying Esther’s example to today, Gov. Beebe said, “You, me, Dr. Horne, virtually all of us at some time in our lives will be called on to do something dangerous or unpleasant or taboo or against the norm and you will be faced with that challenge and decision.

“If you accept the challenge despite the obstacles, despite the dangers, despite the challenges and if you are successful,” he added, “then you know that you fulfilled the challenge for a time such as this.”

Ouachita provides students “an educational opportunity to be able to make those judgments going forward in your life … that allow you to meet those challenges,” Gov. Beebe concluded. “I hope all of you will understand when that time comes, that you are not alone, that there are people on whose shoulders you stand and that there is a precedent for doing God’s will.”

In addition to Gov. Beebe’s visit, other 125th anniversary events in the next few weeks include a Founders Day Convocation and Musical Showcase on Sept. 6, a campus concert by Gungor on Sept. 9 and a chapel address by former Gov. Mike Huckabee on Sept. 20. Activities also will include a 125th anniversary Community Celebration on Oct. 19 and A Festival of Christmas featuring Point of Grace on Dec. 2-3.

For more information about Ouachita’s 125th anniversary celebration, contact the university’s Office of Communications at 870-245-5206 or visit

By Trennis Henderson, OBU Vice President for Communications