Alex and Ani Jewelry: A Rhode Island Gem

I recently visited my local Alex and Ani store in Newport, RI.  It is a beautiful store with so many different types of jewelry to choose from.  Alex and Ani also have a store in East Greenwich, RI right up the street from me.  I am lucky to have many of these stores nearby, as the designer happens to be a local Rhode Islander.  This jewelry can be bought nationwide though.  Check out the Alex and Ani site to see where you can find a store, or to order some of this wonderful jewelry on-line!

As I write for different on-line sites, I actually reviewed Alex and Ani and have a GIVEAWAY for a wonderful piece of their jewelry.  Check it out at GalTime to enter the giveaway!

Pictures from the Newport, RI store (see the beautiful jewelry, that happens to be eco-friendly, for yourself):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

* What do you think of Alex and Ani jewelry?  Do you like the idea of beautifying yourself and being environmentally responsible all at once?

Kristin Wheeler

Video Diary Day 1 (Leaving Rhode Island)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ZS6Oo8SZ30

Why You Should Never Let a Friend Stay With You

As many of you know, I’m leaving the beautiful state of Rhode Island.  Actually, I’ve already left.  Maybe it’s for good, maybe not.  I only know that four years ago, I never would have guessed I’d even visit Little Rhody, much less live there.  But, my friend and former News Director in Cleveland asked me to come…and so I did.  As with almost any new project I take on, or job I start, I was looking forward to all the possibilities… the new station, the new people, the rich Providence history, the ocean.  It would be a lie though if I didn’t tell you that it was also with a bit of trepidation. What if I didn’t make new friends?  What if the people were snotty? I have moved SO. MANY. TIMES. Every time I say the same thing to my husband.  I’ll never make friends like my old friends. And I don’t.  I make different friends.

You know how they say your heart just opens up to allow yourself to love ALL your children as much as you loved the first?  THAT’S how I feel about my friends, but I digress.  I lived in Rhode Island for a solid year…a very lonely year before it happened.  My husband worked out of state and I felt isolated.  Admittedly, I worked a tough schedule to go out and socialize (anchoring evenings), and I’m not really a bar girl, but I finally decided to pull on my big girl panties and stop feeling sorry for myself and go out and make some darn friends.  It didn’t happen overnight, but it did happen and these women are amazing.

Heart Ball at Newport Mansions

Leaving for the Heart Ball

Newport Mansions

How could you not feel like a princess here?

My last week in Rhode Island has been one of my best yet.  Maybe it had something to do with my last minute invite to the exclusive  Heart Ball set at one of the majestic Newport mansions.  I should note, when I told my pals I couldn’t possibly go because all my formal attire was packed up, they said they’d find something for me to wear.  And they did.

Great gift baskets

Or maybe it was the fabulous luncheon the aMomKnowsBest contributors held for me the day before, where they put together a much appreciated gift basket for my big road trip.  Notice the gas gift card, wine, and scented lotion.  Let’s face it, when you are piling in the car with your husband, dog, and toddler, for a road trip that includes logging thousands of miles– with no real destination in sight–  gas money, wine, and smelling good are all necessities.  Did I mention how I have the best contributors and friends EVER?  While I didn’t get to connect with everyone in my final week in RI, I did get to spend some quality time with a few close friends.

girls having fun

Now, when I say I got to spend quality time with my friends…I really mean quality time. We had to be out of our house last week, so my friend Elizabeth invited us to stay with her family.  For those of you keeping track, that’s four adults, five kids and two dogs in ONE house.

I cannot explain how grateful I am to Elizabeth’s family and how much we enjoyed our time there. She may never invite us back (watch this short clip to see why) but knowing the kind of friend Elizabeth is, I think she will.

 

 

How Social Media Makes Saying Goodbye a Little Easier

As I’ve moved around quite a bit in the past few years, moving from Virginia to Oklahoma to California to Illinois to finally Rhode Island, I’ve had to say goodbye many times to good friends.  Unfortunately, it never seems to get any easier.  This time I happen not to be the one moving, but our good friend and owner of amomknowsbest.com, Allison Alexander, is the one moving.  It’s very sad to see a friend moving away, but at least as technology has progressed over the past few years it is easier to keep in touch.  I would always say, “Let’s keep in touch!  We’ll write each other and call,” but everyone knows that is easier said than done (unfortunately).  Moms are busy, both working and raising kids, and day to day life in the new place becomes all consuming.  You make new friends, you move on, but you do always hold in your heart the friends you had in other places.  Now technology is giving us the chance to keep up with friends easier!

(Part of the AMKB Contributor Crew with Allison, Owner of AMKB)

The greatest thing now is the expansion of social media.  I created a Facebook profile in 2006, and have connected with many friends and family through that outlet ever since.  It’s such an easy way to keep in touch and see what friends are doing.  I have been able to connect (and even reconnect) with friends from all the States I’ve lived in.  It makes it so you can actually say, “Let’s keep in touch!” and truly mean it.  Our group at amomknowsbest.com will use social media (Facebook and Twitter) and other technology available to keep in touch with Allison on a very frequent basis.  I’m sure we will be Skyping her in at meetings!


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Friends I keep in touch with from Illinois through Facebook!)

Technology is always advancing and bringing us new great ways to communicate.  My parents, even in their 60’s and 70’s, are using tools to commute with us!  We just spoke to them from their Alaskan Cruise, via my father’s iPad 2 to my MacBook Pro, using Facetime (the Mac version of Skype).  It’s just really amazing how much technology has advanced even in the past 10 years.  One of our AMKB contributors, Joanna Stepka, was able to view her child’s crib on her phone from the restaurant we were eating (see her article).  Now that’s some great technology!   I guess we’ll see what they think of next!

(Skyping with my kids while my parents were babysitting them)

 

Allison Alexander, we will miss you here in Rhode Island, but we know you will be just a mouse-click or Skype call away!

*  How do you use technology to keep in touch with friends?

 

 

Kristin Wheeler

Sometimes Losing is Good

One of the inevitable outcomes of a crappy few years is the slow and steady erosion of health and fitness.  While some people run off to the gym to work through stress, there are those of us who run for the wine glass and the remote.  I can’t say exactly when I let myself go, but gone I have!  It wasn’t that long ago that I regularly attended yoga classes and watched what I ate.  It’s kind of scary to think of how quickly I was able to pack it on and loosen it up.  Yuck.  I think what happened with me is a confluence of events initially launched by the passive act of turning forty.  Up until then I had the ‘thoroughbred’ of metabolisms.  I could have eaten a horse, actually, and maintained my svelte figure.   It was enviable and remarkable really, and as a result, I appeared to be one of those skinny girls we all secretly hate.  I became indulgent and lazy.  Then along comes the big 4-0, a few babies birthed on either side of it, and I’m not so smug anymore; more like snug.

I’m going to admit here to having tried a few radical measures to drop the ‘offending fifteen’ as I’ve come to address them.  First, there was the ambitious attempt at preparing for a sprint triathlon.  I should have known when I had anxiety training in the lap pool, that open water would turn out to be the deal breaker.  Next was ‘40 days of Yoga’ which was going gangbusters until my husband took a three-week business trip in the middle of it, leaving me without early morning child coverage.  Then somewhere along the line I joined Gold’s Gym with my pals, but unfortunately discovered that I don’t like to work out in a fishbowl.  The most successful effort was also the most radical: Beyonce’s Lemonade Diet.  She didn’t invent it, but she glamorized it when she lost 20 pounds doing it before filming “Dreamgirls”. Seriously, though, who doesn’t want to look like Beyonce?  It was ultimately a colon cleanse, and it works great, yet it’s not for the undisciplined.  I lost the weight on it, but as I faced those tough few years (see my previous posts “Surviving Unemployment” and “When Someone You Love Dies”) they steadily and stealthily crept back.   Little *bleep*s.

Enter: Medi-Weightloss!  I’d heard about it from my OBGYN when a few years ago he sauntered in to examine me 60 pounds shy of when I’d seen him the year before.  I was duly impressed, but skeptical he’d keep it off.  So when he came in at my annual exam the following year looking lean and fabulous, I sat up and took notice.  I asked him all about this program thinking maybe my husband or I might need it one day.  He said it was doctor run and really worked.  I stored that information away, and never forgot it.

Fast forward two years and I’m staring down bathing suit season with my love-handled hips and muffin top belly mocking me.  It’s time for the big guns to be brandished, so off I go to the local Medi-Weightloss Clinic in Warwick, RI under the auspices of researching a story for this blog.  After filling out my paperwork, an adorable Medical Assistant named Zoey called my name and showed me to a room.  For the next hour she ran through various tests.  First she weighed me – obviously – then she measured my height.  This data was then put into a special electronic device that I stood on which spat out a diagnostic (Tanita Slip) having to do with body fat percentages.  She told me by reading it I would see that I fell within the range of fine, or, not overweight.  I told her I knew I was not obese, but that my goal was 15-18 pounds of weight loss.   Next, I had an EKG, blood drawn, my blood pressure checked, and my pulse listened to, all while chatting easily with this adorable woman.  She also measured my waist so we could see my progress going forward.  Zoey hugged me goodbye since she felt we had connected (I don’t think it’s policy), and said the doctor would be in to see me next.  In came Dr. Gaffney, also delightful, who listened to my heart and lungs, checked my pulse on my legs and then my thyroid, etc.  I have to say, the exam was thorough.  Then she went over the program with the packet Zoey had given me.  She explained that I would come weekly for an exam and a shot of vitamins, and one time between for an additional shot.   She produced a zippered tote bag with a water bottle (that I love now), my supplements, a food journal, and Keto Sticks.  We talked about the sample menu in the pamphlet and how I was going to eat only protein that first week in the amount of 500 calories a day, along with tons of water.  That initial visit was the pricey one: $268 less the $25 coupon from the Patch.com site, but it includes a full physical and blood panel.  Subsequent weekly visits are $70.  I went off then to shop for the deli meats, shrimp, chicken breasts, etc. I would be eating, as well as Smart Water that I needed to drink once daily.

The week went well.  I returned for my shot midweek, and was in and out in ten minutes.  When I checked my ketones on day four, I was in fact “in ketosis”, which is when our bodies are using fat for energy.  Woo hoo!  My first weekly visit involved a weigh in that showed changes in a few areas: According to the Tanita Slip (analysis of body composition) I’d lost five pounds of fat, my body fat % was lower as was my BMI (Body Mass Index).  All good.  I saw Dr. Gaffney again and she showed me the new diet for week two which includes vegetables.  Never has a cucumber tasted so good!  The plan was to keep to the 500 calories, but now I get 2 helpings of veggies and a healthy fat each day such as 12 nuts or ½ an avocado.  Yum!  One of the best outcomes from this experience is that I have developed a greater appreciation for savoring flavors – you have to when you eat less often and less variety.  Back to my exam, the doctor then reviewed my food journal, and we discussed integrating exercise going forward.  Oh, and there is no alcohol in the first month of the program, but caffeine is allowed.  Did I mention that they called me mid-week each week?  I ended up having questions that they promptly answered for me.

I have had my second weekly visit, and it went much like the first.  I was down another 4 pounds (more than ½ way there!) and all the other numbers on the Tanita Slip were lower, too.  I feel great.  I now have control of my weight, and the process of getting it where I want it.  I would wholeheartedly recommend this program to anyone, but particularly to someone quite heavy.  I think the clinics do a great job making sure their patients stay healthy and safe through the process, and that’s critical. Unfortunately, even as a growing franchise, there are a mere 80 locations across 22 states right now, so not everyone has one nearby.  Six more are opening soon, and I hope that trend continues, because this country needs a solution.  Did you know “that two-thirds, more than 190 million Americans are overweight or obese?  Obesity-related diseases are a $147 billion dollar medical burden every year, and childhood obesity has tripled in the last thirty years.” Shocking, isn’t it?  (Read more at: Battling Obesity in America)

Although I’m about halfway to my “goal weight”, I know I can get there.  It’s going to take about a month in my case.  That’s pretty quick if you ask me, considering how long it took to put it on.  In total, I spent $466 on the program, which I think is money well spent – especially since I didn’t have to buy new warm weather clothes to hide under.  Also, if you were due for a physical anyway this would be a great way to get more bang for your buck. This turned out to be a wonderful experience, and I hope more people try it.  Here’s the website if you or anyone you know wishes to shed some pounds.

The happy outcome for me is that I learned good eating habits, and I no longer fear the beach, my bathing suit, or a tank top.  I’m free to enjoy the glorious Rhode Island summer instead of agonizing over how to dress for it. What a relief!  Who knows, maybe I’ll take up surfing…

 

Please share a weight loss success story you have.  Let’s encourage each other to be “losers” together!

 

 

 

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History Can be Fun, Educational, and Exciting for Kids!

Until I moved to Rhode Island, I had never heard of Gaspee.  I didn’t know who or what it was, and I love learning about history.  This must have been included in our American History book somewhere, but probably only about a chapter or two.  After living in Rhode Island for three years, I definitely now know what the Gaspee is and why it was important in American history.  The Gaspee was a Bristish customs ship (schooner) that had been enforcing unpopular trade regulations in 1772.  It ran aground in Warwick, Rhode Island (area now known as Gaspee Point) as it was chasing the packet boat Hannah.  A group of Providence members of the Sons of Liberty, boarded, attacked, looted, and torched the ship.  This was the first significant event that lead up to the American Revolution.

Rhode Islanders celebrate this event every year, and it is a weekend long celebration!  They have fireworks, 5-K runs, dinners, a parade, and of course the annual burning of a ship representing the Gaspee at the end of each Gaspee Days celebration weekend.  The Gaspee incident happened June 9, 1772, so the events are always held around the June 9th weekend.  This past weekend (even in the rain), we decided to attend the Gaspee Days Parade since we had never been.  It was a fabulous event, and even with the cold, rainy weather, many people came out to see it and participate in it!  I think going to this parade will become a yearly event for my family!  My son is excited to go back next year to see the burning of the Gaspee (since we missed that event this year)!  Here are some pictures of the parade, and you can see many people came from Connecticut and Massachusetts to celebrate the event as well.  We even got to see Governor Lincoln Chafee and Miss Rhode Island in the parade!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My kids and I had a fun and educational time at the Gaspee Days Parade!  I love learning about local historical events!  Check out what fun and historical/educational events you have close to you!  It’s always great to give kids the opportunity to learn, especially while they are having fun.  Please post ideas here!  Our family loves to travel and see new things.  Let us know what your area has to offer!

Kristin Wheeler

Help the Environment…the 4th R!

Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle…..these are the 3 R’s we are now familiar with to help out the environment.  After chaperoning a preschool field trip to “The Dump” recently in Johnston, RI (officially known as the Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation), I learned that there is a 4th R in the mix now: Rot!   Composting is very important these days, as the RIRRC only has about 25 years left before it runs out of space to store Rhode Islanders’ trash.  We can help add time to that estimate if we focus on doing the 4 R’s faithfully.  There is no plan so far as to what is going to happen once they run out of space.  We will either have to find more space in Rhode Island for more landfills, or we will need to take our trash out-of-state, which will be very costly for us and the State.  The field trip was great, and I think every person from Rhode Island should visit the RIRRC to become more aware of how things are run there and what they need to do to be more environmentally responsible.  The trip consisted of a tour of the center, an answer and question session, a small hands-on museum for kids, and a bus ride through the landfill (all the way up to the top of “Mt. Trashmore” where you can see from Providence to Newport).  The kids had a blast, and they learned so much (although I think the adults learned even more!).  Here is what I learned from the tour:

*  The landfill was established in the early 70s to keep RI trash localized and make the cities cleaner.

*  The landfill ONLY accepts trash from RI, and it is considered a sanitary landfill.

*  The landfill is 250 feet high, and it is almost full and will be capped shortly.

*  The RIRRC is digging a new area for another landfill that should last about 25 years, but that is all the room they have at the RIRRC (after that, who knows????)

*  The RIRRC makes the most money from recycling items (so keep the paper, plastic, and glass coming!!!)

*  Towns in RI get money back each year from recycling.

*  You can personally take hazardous materials (car batteries, motor and cooking oil, tires, etc.) to the RIRRC to be disposed of for a fee.

*  All towns send their trash to the RIRRC landfill except for Tiverton, which has its own landfill.

*  The RIRRC uses gases produced from the trash to create energy for power plants!

 I try to do a pretty good job with reducing, reusing, and recycling, but  know I can always do more.  I have all the trendy bags to take to the grocery store (even the small ones that fit in my purse), but I am not always faithful about using them.  The guilt always sets in when I hear “paper or plastic.”  Ugh!  The answer is neither!!!  I read a book in book club called, “The World Without Us” by, Alan Weisman.  Reading that was a huge wake-up call, especially about plastics and using plastic bags.  Read it if you get time!

Today was a good reminder about being environmentally responsible.  I will be better about using my reusable bags, and I will also start composting (which is something I’ve been meaning to do anyway).  I heard you can get nice compositing boxes at Ocean State Job Lot or Lowes, so I will be checking that out.  I will also be better about putting things into the recycle bins appropriately.  I learned today that the cardboard milk containers I’ve been recycling should go in the BLUE (plastic/metal) bins, not the GREEN (paper) bins!  They actually have thin metal lining in the cardboard.  Whoops!  I also learned that you cannot recycle the cardboard from soda boxes or frozen meals.  They have chemicals in them.  Whoops again!  Lastly, I learned you should not recycle wire hangers, Capri Sun pouches, or ANY plastics labeled 3-7.  Rhode Island currently ONLY takes #1 & #2 plastics, but next year they are hoping to take 3-7.  Keep an eye out for that news!

Off to buy a composting bin for the backyard, and to refill my purse with my reusable bags!  Practice those 4 R’s faithfully!!!  We want Rhode Island (and the Earth) to be a better place and last longer!!!

* How are you with recycling?  What can you do to improve your carbon footprint?  You can calculate you carbon footprint here

 (It’s very scary how big of an impact an average family in the United States has!)

Kristin Wheeler

Downsizing….The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly!

Some people choose to downsize their home based on family circumstances, life changes, or they just want a smaller space to maintain.  Our latest move to Rhode Island forced us to downsize based on economic factors.  For one, we were moving from Peoria, Illinois where housing prices are much cheaper than in Rhode Island.  Also, we were dealing with a quickly changing housing market.  We had previously bought and sold houses in California with no problem at all, but now with the declining market, we were having many issues trying to sell in Illinois.  It ended up taking us about a year to sell.  I was holding on to the value I thought our house should be, and in retrospect I should have listened to my husband who wanted to drop the price significantly much earlier than we did.  All I did was give us more heartache, separation from each other, and stress.  We ended up selling our house for less than we bought it for, and we spent five months apart (as he had to come to RI to work at URI with me staying in IL to try and sell the house with a 3-year old and 1-year old at my side).  So, for the difference in housing prices, the loss on our house, and the new PMI we were having to pay in our monthly mortgage, we were forced to downsize from 2,710 square feet to 1,974 square feet.  It has been quite an adjustment, as well as the adjustment of having a brand new home on a golf course to a 1960’s fixer-upper.  The only thing that made the adjustment a bit easier was being able to live in a lovely rental home in Warwick in between houses (which was close to 2,500 square feet).  Sadly, the rental ended up being too expensive for us to buy in the end as well.  Here is what I’ve learned in the past two years:

Downsizing:  The Good

*  Less area to clean!

*  More environmentally friendly (use less resources and heating/air bills much cheaper)

*  Taxes are cheaper

*  More money to spend on traveling and other things for the family (going to Ireland in June for our 10-year!)

*  Forced cleaning and getting rid of unnecessary items (constantly)

*  Have just what we need, and are happy with what we have

*  It’s cozy and keeps the family close together!!!

*  The ability to make the choice to stay-at-home with the kids

Downsizing:  The Bad

*  As the kids are getting bigger, the space seems to be getting even smaller

*  Not enough space to host parties/playgroups

*  Not enough space for an office or workout area (my husband uses the dining table for his work)

*  Hard to host out-of-town family and friends (we are from D.C.)

*  Not enough space when the kids are playing loudly and you are craving some quiet time

Downsizing:  The Ugly

*  To add more space (an addition) is very expensive

*  For older homes, maintenance and fixing-up can be costly (yes, even for large homes as well)

*  Your house may not be the house of your dreams

*  You may feel like you’ve taken a step back in your life instead of forward

Overall, downsizing can be a good thing to do both for the environment and your wallet.  I like that the bills are less, and that we are not strapped to a mortgage that is difficult to afford.  However, it is a difficult adjustment after previously having much more space, but if our perspective was coming from a 1,200 square foot house then this place would seem larger than it currently does for us.  The most difficult thing for me with downsizing is losing the space to host parties, playgroups, and family get-togethers.  I really LOVE being a hostess, but if you don’t have the space then you don’t have the space.  I always have to sign-up to host playgroup when it’s warm out so I can do it at the park.  You can always find some way to work things out.  If we can fix up our yard and deck area, then that would be helpful with entertaining space too.  We are slowly working on our “things to do” list for the house, so we will eventually get to the place where we feel comfortable with the space we are in.

2,710 square foot (plus, 1,500 sq. ft. basement) house in Peoria, Illinois:

1,974 square foot house in East Greenwich, Rhode Island:

I have also learned in the past two years that there is more to life than the house you live in and the possessions you have.  Family and health are even greater things to cherish.  I am blessed and happy with my family and my two beautiful kids!

Have you been forced to downsize, or made the choice to downsize?  I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences!

Kristin Wheeler

Waterfire Providence: A sight to see, hear, and smell……

If you live in Rhode Island or if you are just visiting, then Waterfire Providence is an event you won’t want to miss.  It’s easy to live in a place and not do all the wonderful things around you because “it’s just there and you can do it anytime.”  I grew up in the Washington, D.C. area and did not even see the changing of the guard in Arlington Cemetery until I had moved to Oklahoma (and was back visiting family in D.C.).  You definitely seem to do more when you are a sightseer instead of a resident; sad I know.

I am glad I visited the Waterfire Providence last night (I had my mom in town wanting to do something).  I’ve lived in Rhode Island for three years and this was my first time seeing it.  It was a partial lighting and it was a cool,rainy, and very foggy night, so it kept a few people away from the event I’m sure (but not us!).  I think it was actually nice going to see it without a big crowd.  The waterfire event did live up to my expectations.  I had heard it’s an event for all your senses, and it truly was.  You could see the  beautiful water lit up with fire, hear the wonderful crackling of the burning wood and gorgeous music being played, and you could smell the wood burning just as it smells walking around the streets of Williamsburg, VA on a cool fall/winter evening.


Come visit this wonderful event; residents and visitors alike!  There is also food/drink, entertainment, art displays, etc.  Last night we saw fire shows on the boats, and human statues posing (just like you would see walking the streets of many European cities).  I’m sure a full lighting event would  have even more to offer than I saw last night at the partial lighting.  I will definitely be back for another lighting.  Check out the Waterfire Providence 2011 Lighting Schedule and come on out for a night of fun and culture.  It would be a nice family event if you don’t mind having the kids out a little late, or you can just make it a date night with your significant other.  I’ll probably see you there!

* Have you been to Waterfire Providence?  If so, what were your impressions of the event?  Are you hoping to make a trip to see it if you haven’t been?

Kristin Wheeler

Pancreatic Cancer: Know it. Fight it. End it.

Today I walked with Team WKRP (in memory of Bill Priestley, a community friend) at the PurpleStride Rhode Island event for pancreatic cancer, and I made the decision to have my 6-year old daughter and 4-year old son walk with me.  At first they were a bit resistant to waking up early and having to exert energy, but after they saw the event in action they were excited to be a part of it and enjoyed it!  I was initially planning on running it by myself, but when I heard others were bringing their kids, I realized this could be a great learning experience for them.

The weather held out, and the race started after the introductions and speeches were made (Allison Alexander  former ABC News Anchor was the emcee for the event – she walked in the race with her family as well)!

My daughter was able to walk most of the way (a couple quick wagon breaks along the way), but my son was pulled by myself and some others the entire race.  He was in a wagon decked out with signs for our friend, Bill Priestley.

We saw the Priestley family there walking for their husband/father, who just passed away April 8, 2011.  He battled pancreatic cancer for 18 months, and he leaves behind a beautiful wife and four wonderful kids (all ages 6 and under).  His wife, Kinda, has a wonderful supportive network of friends in East Greenwich, RI and many were at the race (Team WKRP and Team Priestley from Edwards and Angell, the law firm Bill worked for before he got ill).  It was nice to see these groups, as well as many other large groups out for people in the community (another being the group from Happy Hearts Preschool, walking for the owner’s husband who is currently battling pancreatic cancer).

Pancreatic cancer is a hard illness to overcome (survival rate is currently about 4.6%), and it is nice to see people out raising money for research to help find a cure and to learn more about the disease to help increase the survival rate.  After the 5K was finished and we were on our way home, my daughter said, “It was nice all those people gave money and helped out people that are sick.”  I am very proud of her for saying that, and I realized that the decision to bring my kids along was a good decision after all.  They did learn from it, and it was a great experience for them to see the community coming together to support a cause and to support loved ones, both battling pancreatic cancer and those that have passed away from the disease.  Please visit the PurpleStride Rhode Island site to donate money, or consider donating to the Priestley Children’s Education Fund, which can be sent to The Law Office of Joseph A. Priestley, Jr., 85 Beach Street, Westerly, RI 02891.

* Have you included your children in community events for raising money and awareness?  What lessons did your children learn?

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Kristin Wheeler