On Log Your Memory’s First Anniversary …

… my son Karstin and I woke early to drive my brother Rob about 60 miles away to what would be his fifth consecutive chemotherapy treatment, 19th overall.

Montana Cancer Center sign

… watched as the nurse attempted to find a vein that would accept the IV – not quite the easy task it was in the first few weeks of treatment.

Closeup of arm full of IV tubes… sat nearby as this nasty cocktail of drugs made its way into my brother’s arm … drip by painstakingly slow drip. It still amazes me that to help Rob get better, he must willingly allow this deadly, nausea- and pain-inducing concoction to coarse through his tired veins.

Chemo treatment… and it amazes me even more that he manages to smile through the ordeal, endearing himself to the hospital staff that hovers nearby in an effort to offer whatever resources they have to help make the whole process more comfortable.

Rob at the hospital… after returning Rob safely back to his house for a few hours of rest, Karstin and I then met back up with my mom to help get ready for the benefit dinner to be held later in the evening. Karstin did a great job of preparing a huge batch of taco soup to be added to the many more batches provided by volunteers.

Preparing another batch of taco soup… after another couple hours of rushing around, setting up food service, arranging silent auction items, communicating with the many wonderful volunteers and contributors that helped us out, and getting ready for people to arrive, I barely had a moment to catch my breath and snap a photo of my dad before the crowds starting coming.

Dad selling tickets

… and come they did … TONS of them. To say we were overwhelmed with the turnout is an enormous understatement.

Benefit dinner crowd… Not only did we serve every last bit of the gallons and gallons of taco soup, the response to the many donated auction items was wonderfully generous.

Silent auction… Rob even managed to make an appearance for a little while, with Mom grabbing a chance to steal a hug.

Rob and mom

Drawing raffle winners…While Rob & Dad drew the names of raffle winners at the evening’s end, I was busy trying to get a rough idea of just how much this wonderful community had shared with our family.

Benefit proceeds

… and we were all once again incredibly overwhelmed. We still don’t have a final tally, but between the benefit dinner, the raffle, the silent auction, general donations, a match from Thrivent Financial for Lutherans and the wonderful generosity of the friends and followers of Log Your Memory, it appears we’ve raised nearly $10,000 to help Rob and his family deal with financial strains imposed by this nasty disease.

It was a wonderful, difficult, exciting, draining and emotional day … an experience that both made this ordeal my brother is going through a bit too real but also an amazing reminder of the power and value of community.

Thank you again to everyone who contributed in whatever capacity to help Rob and our family. Words cannot express our gratitude and I cannot think of a better way to celebrate the first year of Log Your Memory and the value of “real” life.

Get a sneak peek at what’s to come in the 2011 Memory Logbook product line & pre-order your LIMITED EDITION 2011 Memory Logbook Wall Calendar before they’re all gone! Click HERE for details…


  1. Many hugs to you all. Your brother has a great family and a wonderful community. I hope the treatments go fast for him. Sorry the vein is hard to find for the chemo. I was the same way and had to get a port. The port was so much better then getting poked many times. Your brother is in my thoughts. Many hugs. Mary

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