Updates

Our progress towards raising our 2m target

George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
Today I clocked off from work at a much more reasonable hour, this meant we could pop out with the kids so headed over to the nearby Mayfield Lavender Farm. Despite us spending so much time just up the road at The Royal Marsden - Sutton it's a place we've never visited as we didn't even know this beautiful farm existed!

Isn't it incredible that just 3 years ago George was in his wheelchair post cancer resection / spinal surgery. On this day back then we'd taken him to the 2017 World Para Athletics Championships just 3 days after finishing his 7th of 14 rounds of chemo. There he met Team GB Para stars such as Kare Adenegan, all in an effort to inspire him not knowing how his #EwingsSarcoma cancer, or subsequent issues with his mobility, would go on to affect him.

Today he was loving life, eating cake and running through this picturesque lavender field with Alex 🥰 They far from covered the whopping 25 acre / 50 miles of lavender lanes but our hour there couldn't have been any more perfect 👌 If you want somewhere beautiful and perfectly socially distanced to go then we'd highly recommend you give this fab location a go!

Just as we were leaving we clocked an ITV van and camera crew. It was the one and only Sally Williams from ITV London News that's worked with us on a number of Giant Pledge features over the last 12 months (tonight they broadcast the ITV Weather from there!) Obviously we popped over to say hello, shared lockdown stories and talked about recent highs and lows. It was exciting to be able to tell her about appearing in the latest book by Adam Kay - writer / comedian. But great to also share that we'll be in a show all about the book called 'Dear NHS Superstars' at 9pm on BBC 1 on Thursday next week which we can now also share with all of you too!!!

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2020 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or for help with any event you may be thinking of email Mari-Louise.White@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com
George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
Why play in one room when you can make a mess in every room?! ...that certainly seemed to be the motto our kids lived by today! Something they managed to get away with as Woody and I both had our heads in the books all day. For me it was a normal work day with video conference calls back to back but for Woody, just in case he gets the call from work to say he's going to be flying again, he's getting his head down so he'll be a coiled spring ready to go as and when!

That meant Alex and George had the reign of all the toys and rooms in the house today...! And there was us thinking they were playing so nicely as the house was so quiet all day 😳 It was only when they took over the corridor making a creation out of half of our paper and card recycle bin from the kitchen I started to erupt! Hats off to single parents or parents in families where both of you have been working during lockdown....and don't even get us started on homeschooling and juggling work as well!

Talking of school, despite the fact both George and Alex have now finished, we're still keeping up with Explore Learning at home over the school holidays once or twice a week to keep things ticking over. It's also good for them to interact with people other than us every single day too! (Although, as I said yesterday, this is becoming more and more normal every day and I always love a cheese toastie lunch together out on our balcony!)

One thing it's certainly stopped us doing are our spontaneous socials and pretty much all of our fundraisers. On this day during George's cancer treatment we combined the two and had a spontaneous fundraising idea...sometimes brilliant but not always the best way to go about things! We bought a load of water pistols on the spur of the moment en route to an appointment at the RNOH Stanmore. I swear we've still got one or two in our house somewhere 😂 Joking aside we're always up for hearing your fundraising ideas as after all, we want to help get as many children with cancer as possible to reach this point!

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2020 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or for help with any event you may be thinking of email Mari-Louise.White@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com
George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
It's funny to think that in just over a week there'll be no more photos of our boys running, doing squats and / or sit-ups towards our TV screen. I say that because, as of Wednesday next week, there'll be no more #PEwithJoe The Body Coach live on our screens at 9am 😳 Yes they can still do one of his pre recorded sessions but for the last 16 weeks they've been exercising live with him - Joe helping give us and so many other families a huge part of our covid routine!

Today, as we move into the 17th week of lockdown, yes many UK government measures may be easing but for us we're still pretty much staying at home and have been feeling more content in doing so in many ways. Don't get me wrong, today was a sunny day and us having a good sized garden obviously helps but when asked the question by my work in a survey today about how often I'd want to go into the office if we flash forward to a time post covid, I can't pretend I want to revert exactly back to how things were before all of this started.

Of course I miss seeing my colleagues and clients face to face but if the flip side of that is barely ever seeing these two little faces again, aside from the weekends, then maybe there's a potential balance to be had?! One thing lockdown has taught us is that this degree of working from home in my line of work is absolutely possible so yes, we may be nowhere near the point businesses need to make any firm decisions, and for many this isn't even ever a possibility, but I love the fact that my work are already taking onboard people's preferences and that they're consulting us on how the future might look!

For the boys life's simple pleasures like having an ice cream and picking blackberries from the weeds in our garden (one of the things we've utterly failed to stay on top of but hey) made us all feel like today was a good day. Realistically this isn't sustainable for everyone, with many people out there struggling to get by with no income. But I guess for us George's cancer treatment left us conditioned to trying to look for any good we can in every situation, albeit simply slowing down or stopping and appreciating what we have full stop (and sneaking in a cheeky kiss and a cuddle with the boys in the process as Nana was here on this day in 2017 🥰)

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2020 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or for help with any event you may be thinking of email Mari-Louise.White@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com
George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
Today we got to enjoy the day we dreamed of yesterday. We sat on our balcony basking in the sunshine reading the two books we bought from Waterstone's Reigate earlier this weekend. I'm loving the insights we're getting into lots of different celebs, including their various brushes with the NHS, while Woody's reading 'How To Be An Anti Racist' written by Ibram X. Kendi. A book recommended to us by one of my clients in a continued effort to educate ourselves and be more informed with the black lives matter movement.

In fact we spent pretty much all day sitting and chilling outside. Here you can see Woody after his Sunday morning run and me reading still wearing my pyjamas like some sort of bum! This also meant we let the boys run riot in the house so it wasn't much of a surprise when George rocked up for lunch wearing one of my fancy dress jackets! Thankfully they ended up settling on playing Monopoly later this afternoon before being daft and enjoying themselves back out on the balcony tucked under blankets later this evening.

Everything felt so peaceful today making us feel so grateful for all that we have even if the house is in a complete and utter mess...after all, we had the mother of all reality checks on what's truly important after all of George's cancer treatment! (Just look at his little face on this day in 2017 pictured here 😢) Then again, one thing that's been strange in reading / getting our heads around is us being in the Dear NHS book in the entry by Jack Whitehall as one of the sad stories in it.

I guess we're so used to this now being our life we've probably become pretty numb to hearing some of the grim details of all the hardcore treatment George had. Then again, in reading it back it also punctuates just how lucky we are as well as how massively grateful to our brilliant NHS we'll forever be! ❤️

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2020 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or for help with any event you may be thinking of email Mari-Louise.White@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com
George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
I doused myself in factor 50 today with plans of sitting in the sun and reading the 'Dear NHS' book we feature in that we bought yesterday! However, all my plans went out the window as I ended up nodding off, falling asleep in the shade for half of the day 🤦🏼‍♀️ It's not even as if I'd joined the boys who did #PEwithJoe The Body Coach this morning, just funny old lockdown sleep patterns meaning I was super tired.

We ended up having a quiet and simple day. I chuckled to myself as we had our usual burgers for dinner and quiche for lunch combo which, whenever it seems to be a sunny day, we always end up having! ...ever since a friend pointed this out I've noticed even more just how badly we're creatures of habit! 😂

Aside from Woody mowing the lawn and the boys setting up their own crazy golf course the day simply disappeared into nowhere. Quite the contrast to this day just last year when we flew back from holiday in Spain in the morning to go to no.10 for a Sarcoma UK event where we met Matt Hancock as well as many truly impressive doctors and scientists in the Downing Street garden later that afternoon!

Oh to think about what the conversation would be around if we were to ever meet him again! Not only would we broach the under funding into childhood cancers again but also the crisis in cancer we now face due to covid19. We spoke last week about the BBC Panorama program starting our friend Deborah James, aka Bowelbabe. Well since then the family of Kelly, whose story was one the program focused on with sadly a very tragic end, have set up a petition to urge the government to consider an emergency response to cancer care during covid. Let's face it, the cuts and delays are affecting people young and old across the UK as highlighted in Monday night's program as well as in conversations with many of our little cancer friends.

Click here to sign the petition too and whatever you do, if you notice something unusual in yourself or your child go and get it checked out! https://www.change.org/p/the-secretary-of-state-for-health-matt-hancock-stop-unnecessary-cancer-deaths-caused-by-the-covid-disruptions-and-save-thousands-of-lives

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2020 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or for help with any event you may be thinking of email Mari-Louise.White@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com
George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
Today turned out to be a busy and brilliant day! Not least because we can now tell you about a book we feature in released to help raise funds for the NHS! After heading out to play some socially distanced crazy golf this morning, later today we popped along to our local Waterstones in Reigate. There we grabbed ourselves a copy of Dear NHS, a collection of 100 celebrities stories curated and edited by Adam Kay - writer / comedian.

Contributors such as Paul McCartney, Stephen Fry, Dawn French, Sir Trevor McDonald, Joanna Lumley, Miranda Hart and Dame Emma Thompson all tell their personal stories about their own experiences with our fabulous National Health Service. Add in Graham Norton, Sir Michael Palin, Malala Yousafzai and the friend we made in hospital, the one and only Jack Whitehall, now you can perhaps guess why we appear in the book on from page 122 onwards!

Yes Jack wrote about meeting George and Alex and all about their corridor football shenanigans! With every penny of profit going to charity why not buy yourself a copy and hear even more stories about just how brilliant our NHS is! Those of you that have followed our daily blog for a while will already know just how brilliant we think it is...they did save George's life after all so we've got everything to thank them for ❤️

In fact it was on this day during his cancer treatment his chemo started up again at The Royal Marsden - Sutton after more than a 10 week break we were forced to have due to his cancer resection / spinal surgery and his delayed recovery. By this point we were petrified that such a big break could mean his PNET #EwingSarcoma had a chance to grow back but so far so good now 2.5 years down the line from his treatment finishing 🤞 (We'll ignore his 50/50 statistical chance of survival over 5 years and focus on the positive!)

I said we had a busy day as today we also managed to do another Giant Pledge fundraiser to help beat childhood cancer! With Alex leaving school to start secondary school this coming September we asked all of his classmates for any unwanted school uniform ...well it turns out there was quite a lot of it! Today we turned our garden into a second hand school uniform sale with everything we know about infection control coming into it's own!

The £2000+ raised today will go on to be split between 4 charities close to year three's hearts (as to manage numbers we only invited George's year group with the remaining items all going onto the school) One being our local NHS Trust SASH Charity, next up The Daisy Garland helping young children with chronic epilepsy, leaving a quarter to go to our Giant Pledge to Help Beat Childhood Cancer as well as some towards the schools fundraising efforts for good measure 🥰 It's at this point we can only hope we didn't accidentally put any of Alex or George's uniform in the sale save George ending up having nothing to wear at school next term 😬

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2020 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or for help with any event you may be thinking of email Mari-Louise.White@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com
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