First of all, I just have to say how excited I am about Pledge Page. What a great way to get this message out! I'm deeply grateful to Peter Dudley and the rest of the staff for all of their help and for making this service available.

Sherry's Fund started out as an idea in the back of my mind years ago. But when I decided to run the Portland Marathon, I actually considered other local causes first. I wasn't sure if I was ready to be thinking so much about breast cancer and my family's experience.

But I am grateful for the way things turned out and for the support I've received to do this project from Mary Bunday and others associated with the American Cancer Society. Up to this point, this process has been very rewarding. It's been a joy to share a little part of my mom with people and to be undertaking a project that I know will be of help to the small community from which I came.

I have a lot of time to think when I'm out running, and this fund raising project has been my motivation. I'm up to 12 miles on my longest runs now, and when I'm out pounding the pavement, I think of how pleased my mom would be. I think of her friend from Astoria who developed breast cancer years after my mom had died. She told me about how the experience of having known my mom during her illness gave her strength to deal with her own cancer, and how there was still so much need for additional support. I really hope that Sherry's Fund will be able to provide that needed support.

There are other things I think about when I'm running. I'm very interested (okay, a little obsessed) with how far and how fast I'm going. I even bought this pedometer - it's this very cool little gadget that tells me these things I want to know. You just measure and put in your stride length and your weight, and it works. Like magic. Sort of. The drag of it was that I had it set wrong the first couple times I went out. So I thought I was going MUCH farther and faster than I really was. I won't tell you what I thought I was running, because my actual time and distance might pale in that comparison. I'll just tell you I was feeling very studly. Once I got the thing to work right though, I was happy to see that my mile time is almost 2 minutes faster than four years ago (which I attribute to boxing!). What this means is that if I can keep up my pace for 26.2 miles, I'll come in 4 minutes under the Boston Marathon qualifying time of 3:40 for my age. Not that I necessarily want to run it. But it would be cool to qualify. Now THAT would make me feel like a stud!

But 4 minutes isn't much buffer. I still have a lot of work to do if I want to be able to, say, stop and pee during the race. So keep sending me good thoughts!

More later....