500 Down, 2000 To Go On Our #Journey2aMillion

YOU GUYYYYS. I cannot even. I seriously Can.Not Even. We are barely 9 days into September and we’ve reached 20% of our #Journey2aMillion mileage AND fundraising goals. So yeah, I cannot even begin to tell you how amazingly, wonderfully, fantastically, stupendous you all are!


Of course numbers are great. Goals are great. Meeting goals is even better. But the best part about our 425 miles and $500 is that we’re doing it together. Nothing is better than that. That’s why we’re giving out a few pretty prizes this week just (and every week this month) for being a part of the team!



Every year, we ask you to join our team and donate your miles to support Alex’s Lemonade Stand. Every year, we are awed and inspired by your generosity and commitment. All the kiddos fighting the good fight are grateful for you, and so are we.

There’s always time to join the team (if you haven’t already).

Thanks to Racedots and KatieK Active for their kickin’ prize donations!


Guest Post: The Good We Do (for Friends, Strangers, Ourselves)

I’m Jodi, and I’m on a mission to get a better butt. In fact, I’m deep in the trenches. I’ve been working these glutes of mine hard – and for a good few months now. Am I seeing results? Yes. Maybe. I guess? I’m not sure. You’d think I know, considering the amount of time I spend checking out my rear. My bedroom has a full length mirror and at least three times of day, I can be found back to back with it, my neck awkwardly twisted, staring. What a weirdo.

Am I, though? Am I weird for wanting a little gratification for my hard work? Perhaps not. But I may very well be weird for asking my husband a couple weeks ago to snap a photo of my bare booty using my MacBook Air computer. For the record, I took a quick look, then promptly erased the photo. There were just too many frightening scenarios running through my head. (i.e. “Hey Mom. Hey Dad. Take a look at our vacation photos. Here we are with a palm tree. Look at us here, all dolled up for dinner. And this one…OH MY GOD!”)

So, as I said, in between staring at my tush, and having people take pictures of my tush, I’ve been totally trying to tone it, too. I belong to a gym and tend to have a love-hate-relationship with the classes (but that’s a story for another day). So I found a bunch of tips, videos, and tutorials online and have been exercising on my own. In many ways, it’s super great. I started a new job in January in which I work from home, so I’ll often head to the gym around lunchtime and do an approximately hour-long routine of squats, lunges, step-ups, hip lifts, and a slew of other moves. There’s also an exercise I do called butt burns. Ne’er was there ever a more appropriate name. Holy freakin’ ow.

Yet, even with my steady gym attendance and my relentless dedication to butt burns, I’m not seeing as significant a difference as thought I would by now. Some difference? Yes. Enough improvement for my liking? No. I know these things take time, but I’m getting a little impatient (plus, I fly out to Turks and Caicos in mid-June. Just sayin’). So about a week ago, I decided it was time to kick things up a notch. I put a hold on my personal workouts and signed up for classes at a fancy boutique gym in town. I’ve been there before, so I can tell you, here’s what guaranteed: The workouts are incredible. Here’s what’s not guaranteed: When you smile at the other patrons, they’re going to smile back. That’s OK. I’m not there to meet my best friend. And that’s fine with me because I’ve got one already. Her name is Sharon. And she’s awesome.

We’ve been friends since we were 11. We met at an after-school cheerleading clinic (I promptly quit before tryouts even happened. I guess I wasn’t the rah-rah type.) But out of that short-lived experience came a lifelong friend – whose family opened up their hearts and home to me as well. Picnics, parties, weeks down the shore. If there was a Phillips event, I was there.

In July of 2011, the unthinkable happened. Chris (Sharon’s brother, 27) and Sue (Sharon’s mother, 64) passed away within days of each other. Every time I write that, or say that, it hits me like a ton of bricks. I still can’t believe they’re gone. I constantly do the would’ve, should’ve, could’ve in my mind. The truth is, I can’t change what happened. But here’s what I can do.

I can continue to get the word out about the Christopher and Susan Phillips Foundation, founded by Sharon herself, who was unwavering in her wish for the passing of her brother and mother not to be in vain. Through dollars raised from fundraisers hosted throughout the year, the Foundation provides scholarships to graduating Jonathan Dayton High School students (the alma mater of the entire Phillips family) and to Trinitas Nursing School students as well (Chris was attending school there. He was studying to be a nurse). Sue was a Pharmacist Technician at Walgreens. Customers used to ask for her by name.

And they're off! (The start of the Phillips 5K/10K Run Walk)

And they’re off! (The start of the Phillips 5K/10K Run Walk)

June 1st will mark the 3rd annual 5K/10K Trail Run/Walk. Taking place at Lewis Morris Park in Morristown, NJ, it’ll be an opportunity for folks to celebrate and remember Chris and Sue. Many knew them in life. Others, though, never met them but have been so touched by their story and the good that the Foundation continues to do.

So come on out – it’s sure to be a morning filled with affirmation, determination, and a whole lot o’ perspiration. There’s still time to pre-register (signing up by May 18 guarantees you a cool wicking tee, too). Or simply show up the day of. I won’t be running the race this year. I’ll be volunteering at the event along with others and may even take the mic for a bit. Look for the short girl cheering participants on, and making the occasional corny joke, too. (tap tap. “Is this thing on?”)

Medal recipients proudly pose for a photo.

Medal recipients proudly pose for a photo.

Affixed on the back of Chris’ Jeep was a bumper sticker: Life is good, it said. He truly and wholeheartedly lived by these words. So, here’s to Chris. Here’s to Sue. Here’s to Sharon and the beautiful Foundation she’s created. And here’s to never forgetting that although it may not seem like it on some days, there’s still so much good in this life.

To learn more about the Christopher and Susan Phillips Foundation, visit its Facebook page or the Foundation’s website.


JODIBIOJodi Rigotti is the Senior Editor at Teachers Pay Teachers, an online marketplace for teachers to buy and sell their original lesson plans and other course materials. Her hobbies include hiking, cooking, and being nicer than some say is necessary. She currently lives in Hoboken, NJ with her husband (and college sweetheart), Dan.

Do Good, Feel Good: Million Mile Run Wrap Up

We’ll be honest, we weren’t sure how this month was going to go. That’s always the way with something new, something in its introductory year; whether it be a race, a blog, or an event, there’s always a slight fear of the unknown.

We heard about the Million Mile Run early in the summer and knew immediately we wanted to be involved. The whats and wherefores needed to be sorted out, but we knew the most important reason… the why.


We’ve inundated our lives, our social media accounts, our friends and our families with yellow. We’ve shared facts, recipes, pictures, and videos.

And we haven’t done it alone.

31 amazing people joined us in Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation’s inaugural Million Mile Run event.

Sara, Heather, Katharin, Karen, Maureen, Jan, Suz, Cyanne, Nita, Kate, Keri, Melissa, Sarah, Shaina, Lisa, Beth, Ben, Kyle, Kristen, Wendy, Jenn, Ashley, Sara, Megan, Gene, Heather, Mark, Ashley, Anne, Brandi and Michelle… THANK YOU.

We thank you with our whole beings and if we ever see you in person (that will be sooner than later for some of you), be prepared for tacklehugs!

We got to hear some of your stories, reasons why this cause spoke to you and we thank you for sharing with us. Furthermore, muchas gracias for sharing your miles with the Million Mile Run.


Our original mileage goal was 1,000, which we decimated within two weeks. Incredible! While a million miles weren’t achieved as a whole this year, 198,830 miles were “donated” to the cause. We’re sure that next year that number will grow exponentially.


That’s $315 OVER our goal!  Thank you to all who donated, shared the link to our team, and raised awareness and funds. You are amazing!

Some of our team members really went above and beyond with fundraising efforts and as a thank you, we put together a Top Fundraiser Prize Pack. We gave a little sneak peek last week…


The amazing companies, Sweaty Bands and Lace Locker, both graciously donated items toward our top fundraiser prize pack and we are so grateful. We know that our winner will put the headbands and lace stays to good use.

We happen to know that our tippy-top fundraiser loves Boom Chicka Pop and does not yet have a Scoot a Doot shirt. Watermelon Nuun because… yes.

But wait… there’s more!

The Chicks pooled resources and connections to add even more to the prize pack for our Don’t Stop ’til Ya Get Enough top fundraiser.

fundraisergiveaway2Oh yes! That is an Alex and Ani bracelet. A sweet Oiselle shirt. Bearded Brothers Energy Bar. Clif Shot Bloks. Wilbur’s Chocolate Coffee – because the melding of two of the best things ever is amazing and encouraged.

So let’s wave our hands in the air like we just don’t care for someone (but we do! And she does too!) for the woman who should go into nonprofit fundraising as a profession… MEGAN!



Rock on, Megan!

Should we say thank you again? Aw, what the heck!

Thank you. Thank you all so very much.