Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The 5K

Well, I ran the 5K, and it didn't completely kill me!!! AND it was a HUGE success. We had over 80 people show up, and we raised more $$$ than i could have imagined!!!
Einsteins donated, and i kid you not, over 450 bagels!!! The pictures here could not possibly do justice! We gave as many away as we could, froze a ton, fed all the 5k-ers with them, and still had TONS left over!! I don't know if i'll ever look a bagel in the face again! But if I do, it will only be an Einstein's bagel! (I won't mention that Krispy Kreme just throws away all their doughnuts at the end of the day...)

That bag there has probably 1/3 - 1/4 of the bages we received

These awesome ladies helped me get the bagles/watch my kids. Thanks, again!!!

People donated all sorts of yummy goods for the Bake Sale. We had some AWESOME honey whole-wheat mini-loaves, delicious rice-krispy treats, to-die-for cookies, and other things i can't remember right now. King Soopers donated $25 worth of bottled water! (I won't mention that Safeway wouldn't) and Party America donated a dozen balloons! Michaels gave me 50% off everything i purchased. I was amazed at how many companies were so willing to help out for a cause. It felt like Christmas everywhere I went. It was great!

The 5K itself was a really challenging course. Reid, the girls and I went with my lil' bro Jared, and his wife Kristie the night before to chalk the path. We did all these cute arrows, encouraging phrases, etc, etc, only to arrive home and see clouds roll in and rain-away all our hard work. So, my awesome hubby woke up early the next morning and RE-marked the whole trail!!! So, he ran his 5k and marked the trail and STILL did it in less than 30 minutes!!! something like 27...i think. Anyway, he's awesome. I love him!!

Jared and Kristie stayed here that morning with our little ones (thanks again!!!) It was so nice not to have to worry about my kids while we were setting up the table and getting people registered!. I sent the runners on their way in three separate groups--the runners, the joggers and the walkers. Three of my awesome friends waited for me to get everyone else off and we ran in our own little group. It was so much fun....until the hills came. And then I started cursing the blasted course and had no one to blame but myself!! There were probably a total of 100 yards on flat ground. Other than that we were killing our knees running downhill or killing our lungs running uphill! But, when it was all said and done, it did feel really rewarding to finish my first (and last?) race. (Merathon and Liz--you ladies rock my world. Dunno how you do it. And I never want to find out!)
There was too much going on before the race for me to get a picture of all the runners, so these after pics will have to do. I wish I would have had somebody take one before, but what can ya do??

It was so fun counting all the money at the end. People were SOOOOO generous! I'm realizing more and more that everybody loves to help friends, and friends' friends out. But they just need a way to do it. I can't tell you how many times people said something along the lines of "I've been wanting to help them out, but just didn't know how." And that, my friends, is what this 5K was all about.

Because of the extreme generousity of so many people, miracles have been happening. The Ortons had, combined, about $40,000 in medical bills. Miraculously enough, the hospitals were able to help them out a lot thru different charity programs. But the bills they had left were still totalling almost 4x the amount we raised. So, we needed some serious $$ stretching. And that, my friends, is what I do best. I've spoken with over 15 billing managers/assistants, and told them that the Ortons have some friends who've gathered some funds to help them out. And miracles have happened. It's amazing what a lot of cash can do!! Dr's have been willing to take off as much as 75% of the bill. Hospitals have lowered bills that "could not possibly go any lower." And I've completely mastered the "Is there any way you could go lower than that?" technique. Mastered it, i tell you!! Ask my friend, Kristin--she witnessed me not taking no for an answer. There are still a couple bills we're working on, and I've still got a little bit of the $$ left to work with. But....I'm really hoping that in a few days the Orton family will be medical-debt free!!! Isn't that amazing!?!?!?

I can't say Thank You enough to everyone who helped out with this little fundraiser! Every person I know offered to help out in one way or another, and that is why it went so well! so, once again, THANK YOU!!!


Team Millward said...

You are seriously the most amazing and thoughtful person to have put that together. It was so much fun helping you and I am SOOOOOO glad I got a babysitter so I could run with you ladies. There was no way that I was going to be able to push 70 lbs up those hills (don't worry, I too was cursing those hills and your name!) And you know that you will be getting many calls to be people's financial assistant, especially when it comes to medical bills. I'm not the least bit surprised you could pull that off!

merathon said...

do you negotiate your own medical bills too? if so, i'd like some tips!

Gillian Brown said...

You are an angel my darling!

Candace said...

You are such a great person to take all of this on. What a wonderful friend you are! I miss you guys! Love the girls haircuts and all the cute pictures!

Just Us said...

Sooo... first- you're awesome. that's amazing that you were able to raise that much money and negotiate their medical bills down to nothing. What I am wondering (and maybe I missed a post about it) was why they had so many medical bills? What happened? How did you know them?

carin t said...

I may be picking your brain in a couple of months when my friend and I start planning a 5k fundraiser for my good friend who's 2 year old has cancer. Looks like yours turned out great - gives me something to get excited about!