Sunday, May 18, 2014


Sam loved his piano lessons.
Like any kid, he didn't always love to be told to practice.
But he loved piano lessons, and he loved his piano teacher.

The third Sunday in May will always hold this memory for me.
I recounted it last year.
In some ways, it was the very beginning of our leukemia journey, we just didn't realize it.
How could we know that the pain in his legs that day was the first signs of the nightmare that was to come? We could not.

I'm good at photos, as you might have noticed.
I'm not quite as good at videos...and of course, I'm now relishing every last scrap, every last second, of video footage of Sammy. At least I'm good at saving stuff, even the blurry and out-of-focus things. Everything matters now.

So today I realized that I might just have a video of this piano recital from May 20, 2012....and I do.
(It wasn't his first piano recital, and it wasn't his last. But it's the one that I recall so vividly...)

Here it is:

It's not much, I guess. But I'll take it....

A few housekeeping notes:

I am honored to tell you that I will be participating in the Children's Hospital of Wisconsin Miracle Marathon (radio telethon) on May 22nd. It will be my first visit back to CHW since Sammy died, and I'm grateful that I'm going for the purpose of telling his story.

It would not be a proper trip to CHW, however, without an opportunity to help out the families that continue to be in treatment there. I'm hoping to take with me a stack of gift cards that will offer families a little treat or perhaps ease the burden of buying lunch or dinner. If you're so inclined to help us out, I've compiled this list of national-chain-kind-of-places that are near the hospital.

If you decide to help, please note:
***IMPORTANT: Please make sure that the increments of the cards are $25 or under. Even a $5 card means so much to a family.

***IMPORTANT: Please do not send me printable gift cards via email! These won't work.

Cards can be dropped off at my office (Am Shalom) or our home (message me for address if you need it) or mailed.

Thanks for helping our family help others.

Suggested places near CHW:
Pizza Hut
Noodles and Co
Jimmy John's
Taco Bell
Bruegger's/Stone Creek Coffee

More on the Children's Hospital Miracle Marathon:

And in other news, we're now the Baldest Family on the Block, with all of us shaving our heads for St Baldricks in the last few months. Thank you for all of your support and love.


  1. I can't get gift cards to you that soon. Instead, I will send some to CHOA in Atlanta. I will send them in honor of my nephew's second marriage. They want money and asked for it in the invitation. I will send a stack of gift cards to the hospital (or should they go to the Ron Mac house, instead?) in honor of their wedding and in memory of too many kids. Excellent all the way around. Thanks.

  2. special post
    lovely smiles
    G-d willing good health, lots of smachot and humor to enjoy the world

  3. A wonderful photo of a wonderful family.

  4. thank you for sharing the precious video of sammy playing the piano. and you win the prize of being the sweetest (baldy) family on your block. your children are so amazing for taking that step. you should have many simchas and good health.

  5. short and sweet, his music, his life; he plays our heartstrings now, in endless song; this video is a jewel! thank you

  6. Looking forward to hearing your story on WKLH later today. I've been volunteering at the Miracle Marathon since I could (age 18) and this year it's even more poignant because I lost one of my best friends to cancer in March; she was a patient at CHW. I've been following your journey through Emma Rose, and my prayers are with you always.