Christina’s Corner: May 5, 2023

Dearest friends, it is my birthday today. I was born on a Friday some time ago now, which makes me loving and giving, according to that old nursery rhyme – no big deal. Like many folks after a cancer diagnosis, birthdays bring a complicated feeling. I’ve now spent five birthdays in the grip of cancer treatment, and that feels kind of depressing. But I’m also here, celebrating another birthday, unlike many of my peers- so it feels worth celebrating, perhaps even more so than before.

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Christina’s Corner: April 28, 2023

We wrapped up our birthday month at Cactus Cancer Society last night with our Birthday Bash. If you’ve never been to one of our celebratory events, let me tell you – you have to make it to the next one. We played games, raised more money toward our goal, and danced like there was no tomorrow. There are a lot of things I love about our community, but the fact that we know how to have a great time is my favorite. 

Here’s some easy ways to keep the fun going into the easy, breezy vibe going into the weekend.

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Christina’s Corner: April 21, 2023

It’s time for me to come clean: spring is not my favorite season. Summer is my favorite and I wait all year for the warm evenings when I can watch the fireflies, sit outside watching the sun go down at 8 PM, and everything feels like it is holding a magical, promise-filled potential. And I don’t even have allergies to complain about! Still, this week has been so lovely near me. No rain in sight (a bit of a loss since I threw down some grass seed on my backyard’s bald patches), warm during the day, but still cool enough at night to cozy up. Spring, you may be winning me over yet.

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Christina’s Corner: April 14, 2023

I was able to spend some time with one of my favorite kids today, my former student I’ll call Clara. I taught Clara from preschool until the end of elementary school. She lives around the corner from me, and I’m also friends with her mom, so we’ve stayed a part of each other’s lives even as she’s now almost through 8th grade. Clara used to be quiet and a bit reserved in class, but in the past few years, has totally come into her own. She’s laid back, confident, and finds joy in the little things and honestly, I’m in my thirties, and these traits are still goals. The kids, as they say, are alright. Here are some little things that I think embody the notions of ease, confidence, and joy for your weekend.

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Christina’s Corner: April 7, 2023

If the past few years and a cancer diagnosis have taught me anything, the simple things are really the big things. There are too many to count: getting to sit outside for a moment between meetings, making your destination just in time for the thunderstorm. A sale on your favorite pint of ice cream, making silly jokes with a friend over text and laughing until your cheeks hurt. When the big stuff is precarious, the little stuff is even more important – and that’s what today’s post is all about.

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Christina’s Corner: March 31, 2023

A moment of vulnerability: I struggle with what to write here many weeks, folks. I never want to seem oblivious to the suffering of the world, and there’s been so much of that to go around of late. I don’t want to be that equivalent by pretending the world is fine, thank you very much, because it’s not. (I recall, shuddering, that Mario Batali once responded to a sexual assault allegation claim in an email that ended with a cinnamon roll recipe. Talk about being totally out of touch.) What’s the solution, I wonder? After cancer, after the first whispers of COVID, after gun safety laws fail to be adopted by a country with endless mass shootings – why not just eat tasteless mush, see only darkness, and do nothing other than accept bitterness as our sole emotion?

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Christina’s Corner: March 24, 2023

I spent a solid amount of time outdoors this week. I’ve been working towards tracking my time outside, not necessarily my time being active, and it’s been an absolute delight. The weather was warmer on the East coast: the sun was shining and even the rain wasn’t too harsh and pleasant enough to walk in with a raincoat. My body has needed some extra rest, but it’s been worth it. I hope that you’ve had the space to both enjoy what the outdoors has offered you this week and the time to give your body the rest it needs.

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Christina’s Corner: March 17, 2023

By the time I write this next week, it will be spring. True, it may not feel like spring for some, but it will be spring by the calendar and that will be good enough for me. Next week, spring, and in three months, summer. Near me, I’m seeing crocuses and daffodils spring up,and my favorite magnolia tree put forth soft pink petals. I’m taking the sweater off my tiny nine pound dog when she goes into the sunshine, and I even cracked a window this afternoon. Wild! I hear those of you in the south, or in more temperate climates, it doesn’t shift much for you. (Or, you know, climate change.) So don’t worry, these picks will greet you perfectly in time no matter what season it’s feeling like today.

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Christina’s Corner: March 10, 2023

My dog is currently snoozing at my feet, in a direct line from the tiny space heater I have been running for… what feels like years. I just had some macaroni and cheese from the box, complete with barbeque jackfruit on top. It’s full comfort mode over here, folks, and I am leaning into it. I was confusingly on the brink of tears most of Wednesday. I was running through possible reasons in my head: was it the full moon a few days before? A heartwarming commercial? Did I not sleep enough the night before? It wasn’t until the early evening that I realized that my body was remembering, even though my mind was not.

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Christina’s Corner: March 3, 2023

In case your seasonal allergies haven’t informed you yet, we are 17 days away from Spring. Instead of thinking of it like “biding my time,” which I absolutely do, I’m trying to find some enjoyment in the month. There’s excitement in looking over the seed catalog I was sent and planning my garden, and the daylight is stretching a bit later so I can walk my dog closer to dinner time. It reminds me a bit of the time between scans and treatment, to be honest. How can I make joy, even here? How can I make this fun, even now? I hope the following ideas give you some motivation to do the same.

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