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Two weeks into school, and it would seem that a schedule has ensued and some kind of sense of normalcy…not so much in southeast Louisiana.  Hurricane Isaac decided to make his appearance last week, giving us three days off from school.  Needless to say, it shook everyone up a bit and changed around school things, but it also gave some much needed reflection time as to just what I want to accomplish this semester:

1.  As always, time with family.  Spent two days of the hurrication with sister Pamela (and of course my favorite niece Abby).  Since the first major theme of Louisiana – the shrinking coast – was taken care of by Isaac, we decided to take care of Louisiana’s second major theme – eating.  We cooked Southwest Turkey Meatballs with Creamy Cilantro Dipping Sauce.

The dipping sauce is fantastic – and I highly recommend the meatballs, too.  I’ve been putting the sauce on just about everything from chips to chicken.  If only I could brush my teeth with it…

2. Time with friends.  As this year begins, I am reminded (a little – ok, a lot – too much) of what next year brings.  I’m excited for the uncertainty, and I know that it’s out of my hands, but it is sad to think that all I’ve known for four years will be different.  Living within a half mile radius of majority of my best friends just cannot be beat.  In fact, I was surrounded by 92,000 of my closest friends at the first football game of the season.  Geaux tigers!

Elizabeth, Emily and I

Feeling sad, happy or just bored, I am so blessed to just be able to call my friends up and be over there in minutes to help me take care of the aforementioned feelings.  Emily Morgan, Allie Petit…thank you for letting me crash your apartments to talk most recently!

3. Keeping on top of my schoolwork, without senioritis setting in.  I have been able to balance schoolwork so far in college, so here’s hoping I can continue it. Also, planning on having all grad school applications done by finals week, so I can start figuring out this ‘after college’ thing people speak of – adulthood?

4. Relaxation.  Amidst all of the business, I’m also making it a priority to spend some time relaxing…just having fun without an agenda.  For me, staying up late in college has generally been from studying, but it doesn’t always have to be that way!

5. Running and adventuring.  I plan to keep up the running, train for some 20 milers, or even another marathon…AND, currently most excited about the next MS ride I get to do.  (Link to my past one).  I am very excited to get to ride with Lauren and her family in the Louisiana Bike MS 150 mile bike ride from Hammond, La. to McComb, Miss.  It takes place Oct 6-7, and more information from my fundraising letter is below.  I understand I just raised funds for a ride, so any support, monetarily or emotionally, is greatly appreciated.

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Many adults peak athletically in their mid-20s; for Louisiana native Lauren Rolston Jacobs, this was no different.  By the age of 23, Lauren was already a half-ironwoman and had run three marathons.  However, unlike most adults, Lauren’s feet began to go numb as she biked and ran, and fatigue required her to take six hour ‘naps’ after her long runs. Each month, more than 800 Americans are diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS).  In January 2009 at 24 years old, Lauren became one of the 800.

With the diagnosis, Lauren was welcomed into a new family: the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.  The Society contributes to MS research, advocacy, education and helping those suffering with MS.  One major source of funding for the society is Bike MS – there are more than 100 rides nationwide.  A key component of the rides is that riders must raise a certain amount to participate.

Through generous donations in 2009, I was able to ride 75 miles in the Louisiana Bike MS event.  With a cause and friend so dear to me, I wanted to take Lauren’s story across the nation.  In June 2012, I rode 150 miles from Williamsburg to Richmond and back with Bike MS Ride Virginia.

Day 2 of the Ride Virginia 2012

Now that I am back in Louisiana, I want to partake in the Louisiana Ride this October.  For that, I need your help!

To make a tax-deductible donation online, visit here.  Make sure to put my name in!  You can also send a check made out to the National MS Society with my name in the memo line. Mail to: 2012 Bike MS: Louisiana Ride, NMSS, P.O. Box 4125, Houston, TX 77210-4125.

Lauren completed the 2009 and 2011 Louisiana Ride, and she plans to do the 2012 ride, too.  I have had the pleasure to go on many training rides with Lauren, and her positivity and fun-loving spirit never cease to make me realize just how strong she is.  I’ll never forget one ride I was on with her and her family.  When I mentioned my feet were losing sensation from riding so long, Lauren laughed, “Mine have been numb the whole time!”

Team Lauren Rocks at the 2009 Louisiana Ride

Thank you so much for your time, consideration and donation.

rideLA_fundraisingletter

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For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.  2 Timothy 1:7

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