My Fundraising Page

My Fundraising Page
Jul 28, 2008 by Veena Smith

Thank you

Welcome to my Team In Training home page where you can track my progress as I work to raise public awareness and funds for blood cancer research and patient services while training for the Rock & Roll Marathon iin San Antonio, Texas in November 2008. For information about fundraising events I'm involved in, please visit Thank you!

Update: December 12, 2008

Thank you, all, for the emotional and intelligent support you gave me during the preparation for the marathon. Even greater thanks for donating so generously to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Update: November 14, 2008

Wow. I'm headed off to bed in a few minutes. Tomorrow, Aimee and I leave for S.A. and the hotel, the check-in and the pasta party. We're headed to the biggest athletic feat of our lives thus far. Thank you for caring about me and The LLS! You may track my progress as I hit the milestones by going to Bib 29220 Veena Smith

Update: October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween! Today, I may see some scary things, but one thing I am not afraid of anymore is 26.2 miles. Last Saturday, I ran 21 miles in under 5.5 hours. I know it's not fast, but it tells me that I can finish 26.2 without having them pull up the waterstops and taking down the flags before I get to the finish! I found my "groove" too. I have struggled for months with choosing to do intervals or not. Finally, during the miraculous 18 mile run, I found out that I did at least as well in every aspect if I just ran a steady pace instead of running and walking in intervals. Someone I met during a fundraising event last 4th of July explained it to me but I don't think I could regurgitate it well enough to make sense except to say that my body tolerates the slow and steady very well and I now have a new strategy. I'm using a handheld waterbottle also, which drastically reduces the time I spend chatting around the watercooler (another weakness). Everyone has noticed how chatty I am and I have realized that talking gets me through the hardest parts of my runs. I was delighted that Coach Miranda suggested not abandoning that strategy just because I won't know the people around me in San Antonio. She says I can talk away , so that I will do! Can't wait to give an update again in a few weeks when the marathon is completed! Lots of thanks to all for the support. I have so many thank you cards to write! Love, Veena

Update: September 3, 2008

Sent a couple hundred dollars worth of checks in to the bookkeepers at Team in Training. That means I'm less that $650 away from meeting goal! I'm super excited and so grateful that I still have 2.5 months to train before the marathon itself. I did send in my commitment papers yesterday, so I will absolutely be there in San Antonio with my teammates. This has been a great year!

Update: August 28, 2008

Two and a half months until the marathon. I'm confident and the runs have been meeting my expectations. I am learning to slow down to conserve energy. Learning to make a sport of running involves so many details. Nine months ago, I would have had a good laugh if you told me I should go out and run even a mile, so I don't get down on myself over mistakes I make during this adventure.

I am gearing up for the second Bunco Benefits night. It is set up to be short & sweet. We don't intend to keep you out late (we are done promptly at 9), but at the same time, we like to see you getting out and doing things! Consider it a treat to yourself that helps blood cancer patients live their lives.

Update: August 13, 2008

Bunco was fun! Wish you could've been there? You can- August 25, September 8, September 22 & October 6. Email me at!

Also... Chick Fil A Clear Lake Shores is donating 20% of your purchase price when you mention you want to credit the LLS! So come on down and get some free chick'n'strips that they're giving away this week.

Update: July 29, 2008

Big news is that the other TNTmamas and I are staying in Texas for our upcoming marathons. We are trading Francisco for Antonio and will be extending our training so that we run the full race in November 2008, instead of October. I will always love San Francisco, but San Antonio is special to me as well. My husband and I were married there 7 years ago yesterday.

The Red team had a pretty successful time with Bingo at Good Shepherd Church in Friendswood. We all got along well and the air conditioning kept us comfortable. My thanks to my fellow team members for being so easy to work with and so sweet to my 5 y.o. and I. I had one quilt completed (just finished that a.m.). It was made of tie-dye and batik cotton and measured between 32-38 inches square- I can't say I remembered to actually measure it. I did go and meet the silent auction winner yesterday to take some pictures with it. I've got fabric laid out for a couple more projects. It was more satisfying than I thought it would be. I read that it is more important for a quilt to be loved than it is for it to be perfect, and I have to want for that to be true since many of the triangles turned out to be trapezoids.

Update: July 9, 2008

Those holiday weekends do fly by! One good thing I did between the 4th and now was get started with my mini-quilts. They will be my contribution to the Bingo silent auction on the 26h at Good Shepherd Episcopal in Friendswood. Yikes, I need to hustle. You can have a look at a couple of unmounted blocks here and here. And if you're local and just love helping with other people's quilts, call me! Ooh, our first date of Bunco is getting finalized. I'm so excited that Kim from Cork Wine is a great event planner and easy to work with. Yay! email me at veena for tickets.

Update: July 4, 2008

Had a great morning at the Kemah Children's Parade. Aimee's kids and mine passed out treat bags. They did a fantastic job and I'm proud of them for enjoying their generosity. Talked with a guy about triathlons and we got $6 in donations as well as a generous offer from Bernadette of D'Vine Wine. Again, it was a great morning! Happy Independance Day!

Update: July 3, 2008

Whew! That was a HARD run for me last night (10 miles). My buddy Aimee kicked butt last night, or else I think she did, because, after a point, I did not see that woman again until we got back. Yeah, by that time, my legs were made of burning jelly. Thank you for the multiple contributions received last couple days. Mr. Trevino, I got your check in the mail today! Thank you! Going to mail it in along with the check from my dentist.

Link for the day: Make a Child Smile. Takes some paper or a card and a stamp. By the way, if you ever want to send Joseph Novick a card or anything, let me know; I'll get it to him. Thanks again!

Update: July 2, 2008

Today, my Team and me & my pink eye are running 10, HELLO, 10 miles. Up NASA Rd., so if you see us, be kind- no catcalls, please! Kidding, kidding.

I found a really cool link. Please see- this is SO awesome:

Update: July 1, 2008

Two new programs you can take advantage of because it's fun-

1. Phantom Matching Donor

I've got someone who hasn't donated yet. This anonymous person is willing to make a donation to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and has agreed to DOLLAR 4 DOLLAR MATCH donations made from here on out. Any donation you make up to $1,000 (don't know who you are but that would be awesome!) will be matched as soon as I notify the Phantom. Your dollar amount doubles!

2. Look in this picture album, and you will see a picture of me with my car. I made a vinyl sticker as a thank you to my dentist. He sent me a generous donation! So... it comes out of pocket and I will have one made that reads YOUR preferred message with a donation of $100 or more. And I WILL put it on my car.

Update: June 28, 2008

Today was a very important day for me. I went up the Saint Arnold Brewery with my husband and our friends, who brought our super gorgeous godchild. The atmosphere is fun there- like the Hofbrauhaus in Germany. I wore a new shirt I made because the crowds are so conversational and I was certainly open to talking about The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Team in Training.

I was standing in line with our steins when a man smiled and said, "I like your shirt." "Oh, really," I said, "are you on a Team?" My guess would be that he was a cyclist or a triathlete. He was tall, slim and gray haired. He looked like he could compete. "No, I have leukemia and I like your shirt." Well, that floored me for a moment. I am sure I had a stunned smile. Then, I stuttered, "How are you doing?" which I was hoping expressed concern and interest in a sensitive way. Although I have been a nurse for 3 years, cancer diagnoses are still new to me. I think I did ok, because he didn't miss a beat. He has had chronic lymphocytic leukemia for 2-3 years and is currently doing alright. I asked him how he was diagnosed and for him, it was a high white count that got the ball rolling. Later on, when I stopped back by to thank him for getting my attention and talking to me, he asked me if I was a nurse. He probably wondered because the second thing I asked him was what his symptoms were. That's really my top question when I hear about a condition that is new to me. It's going in my mental database:)

Anyway, today was hugely important because it was the first time a blood cancer patient spoke up to me about their condition. And he did so with a lot of joy in his eyes that strangers could care enough to make a whole Team for it. I was equally joyful to see a man out living his life flanked by his 2 beautiful grown daughters. One of the daughters saw me later and let me know that her dad is interested in being a walker next season. I think that would be a fantastic experience for him and his family. Because of meeting people and finding a common mission, being a member of Team in Training is proving to be one of the most fulfilling ventures of my life.

I hope that you are similarly moved by this simple story. Your donation of even $10 benefits people like the man I met at the brewery as well as infants and others. Blood cancers affect people of all walks of life. Please make a contribution today!

To read about chronic lymphocytic leukemia, visit The LLS' website.

*******end of update*******

I'm training to participate in an endurance event as a member of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's (LLS) Team In Training. All of us on Team In Training are raising funds to help stop leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin lymphoma and myeloma from taking more lives. We are also counting on them as they improve the lives of those living with cancers.

So very important is your contribution today: please make a donation of $100, or any amount you can (Go Take 5'ers!), to support my participation with Team In Training and help advance LLS's mission. Your donation is 100% tax deductible and you will receive a receipt in the mail.

You may make a secure donation via credit card that takes less than 5 minutes to do, using this website, or message me to learn how to mail a check.

When considering your gift, please keep in mind that a donation of:

  • $80 would cover the cost of 5 days of parking for a patient at treatment at Houston's Medical Center
  • $162 would be the equivalent of $1/day for each day I will train
  • $288 would honor every child or adult who will be diagnosed today

I changed the picture, but I can't forget my 3 year old Honored Teammate, Joseph Novick. Joseph was diagnosed with Myelodysplastic syndrome, which is similar to a type of acute myelogenous leukemia, but is thankfully in remission now. Joseph's family have come out to practice often to boost morale during training. I want to thank them for joining us on this mission and sincerly hope they have fun along the way.

I hope you will visit my web site often. I also hope to make more frequent updates. Thanks for your support!


Supporter Comments

    "Veena, keep up the great work! Remember I'm running her at home right along with you. All of us at SM are super proud of you. :)"

    Elizabeth Muirhead

    Wed Aug 20 12:02:37 EDT 2008

    "Best of luck to you and Emily!"

    Elizabeth Muirhead

    Mon Mar 07 03:12:29 EST 2011

    "I wish you all the best!! What a great cause!!!"

    Ana Morales-Amaya

    Thu Aug 14 02:09:46 EDT 2008

    "God Bless you all !"

    Steven Quintela

    Thu Jul 31 10:28:30 EDT 2008

    "Good Luck with your Venture. I am proud of you and am really glad that you are trying to make a difference in others lives. God will bless you and your family for what you are doing. Keep up the good work."


    Wed Sep 17 12:29:20 EDT 2008

    "What a great cause! Good Luck Heather! Love you!"

    Natalie Moya

    Thu Oct 14 11:51:39 EDT 2010

    "Such a wonderful thing you are doing, Heather. Blessings to all!!"

    Natalie Moya

    Tue Oct 12 09:23:24 EDT 2010

    "Keep up the great work Tina!!"

    Ana Morales-Amaya

    Fri Feb 18 11:45:40 EST 2011

    "Good luck Teeny Weeny! I am so proud of you and excited for you! Such an awesome cause!"

    Ana Morales-Amaya

    Tue Jan 18 10:26:14 EST 2011

    "Good luck Liz, I'm sure you'll do great! Very inspiring!"

    Veena Smith

    Thu Sep 22 12:13:38 EDT 2011

    "We're proud of you for doing this, Liz. It's great to make a difference!"

    Veena Smith

    Fri Aug 12 10:35:14 EDT 2011

    "Great job Liz!!! ♥"

    Veena Smith

    Sun Aug 07 03:21:42 EDT 2011

    "Good luck Liz!"

    Veena Smith

    Sat Aug 06 06:17:34 EDT 2011

    "Good luck, Zaz!! I'm doing a half in September if you want some easy practice:) "

    Veena Smith

    Mon Jul 25 07:30:06 EDT 2011

    "YAY LIZ!"

    Veena Smith

    Mon Jul 25 07:02:57 EDT 2011

    "Gabrielle, Best of luck and thank you very much for honoring our own hero--Grandma with this effort!"

    Wed Nov 30 03:33:11 EST 2011

    "Gabrielle, Your October "team in training" at Forest wishes you the best! Lisa Bogutz Blair Kress Danielle Galanaugh Dan Berger"

    Wed Nov 09 08:01:48 EST 2011

    "Cousin Judy is proud of Liz for contributing so much to fight the cancer that claimed her sister Joyce's life."

    Veena Smith

    Fri Oct 07 11:51:41 EDT 2011

    "Liz, you family and friends admire your dedication and commitment to this cause. Way to go!"

    Veena Smith

    Wed Sep 14 02:44:45 EDT 2011

    "A successful person is a dreamer whom someone believed in..... I believe in You. Congrats my son you reached your fundraisng goal. Your next Goal, cross the finish line & help find the cure. Lov Ur Mom"

    Bunco Contributions 8-11

    Wed Sep 14 06:19:32 EDT 2011

    "Gabby, My wife Marina is running the NYC Marathon this year with TNT also! Best of Luck & Keep On Truckin!"

    Tue Oct 11 09:13:44 EDT 2011

    "I am very proud of you. Keeep up the good work. God Bless you and your team!"

    Fri Sep 23 08:46:50 EDT 2011

My Fundraising Total

Raised: $1,247.94 | Goal: $2,800.00
45 %

Make a Donation

We are sorry donations are no longer being accepted for this participant for this event.

My Thanks To

Anonymous $250.00
Lou Battilone $100.00
Bunco Contributions 8-11 $100.00
Amy Jaynes $50.00
Vanessa Paelicke $50.00
Elizabeth Muirhead $50.00
Ana Morales-Amaya $50.00
Steven Quintela $50.00
Ashley Shaw $40.00
Chick-Fil-A at Clearlake ... $31.00
Joan Potter $30.00
Natalie Moya $30.00
Peter Demarest $25.00
Jason Demers $25.00
Stacey Amdur $25.00
Richard Delgado $25.00
Ryan Kerker $25.00
Mary Sterling $25.00
Marie White $25.00
stephanie interbartolo $22.50