Monday, August 25, 2014

Gift Bags: The Start of Lisa's Cancer Kickers!

I am taking a cue from Emma Rose, A Patient Helping Patients and my dear friend, Abby, and looking to brighten the day of some leukemia patients at Rush University in Chicago.

I am being treated at Rush.  Although I am (hopefully) almost done with my maintenance chemo, I want to help others that are dealing with what I dealt with last year...staying at the hospital for weeks.  Leukemia and other blood cancer patients tend to have longer hospital stays, because their cancers are treated differently.  They want to wipe out all your immune system and make you weak, nauseous, and tired.  Wait, that sounds awful!  Well, it is and it isn't.  Its good to get rid of all those bad cancer cells, and its even better to have 24 hour care.  It just sucks being in lock down and feeling awful because your body isn't really making blood (your life force). 

So, when I was at Rush getting my induction (first) chemo, I was there for 5 weeks.  My friend, Abby, mailed me a box filled with goodies.  I got a ton of little things that made me smile, laugh, and came in handy.  I think its time to pay it forward and surprise some people that are having a rough time have a bit of a better day.

Would you like to help?  I am looking for small things (new, unwrapped) that can help a cancer patient and maybe give them something to do.

Suggested items I need:
  • Kleenex or Puffs cubes (the hospital has tissues, but they are hard and scratchy)
  • Lip Balms, like Aquaphor and Neutrogena, for very dry and sensitive chapped lips
  • puzzle books, like crosswords, Sudoku, word finds
  • iTunes and amazon (or kindle) gift cards. $5-$20 range.  Patients can use to download games, apps and books onto their phone or tablets.
  • yarn for crochet and knitting
  • gum
  • hard candies (lemon heads are the best)
  • soft travel sized fleece blankets
  • memo books, pens.
  • hand weights (to keep the muscles from atrophying, like 1-2 lb.)
  • inspirational books, like chicken soup for the soul
  • ear buds for listening to music on their phones/tablets/laptops
  • long distance phone cards, so they can use the landlines and not use up all their cell minutes
  • chocolate bars-- plain milk chocolate.  Chocolate anything is a commodity in the hospital.
  • magazines (entertainment, travel, health, fishing, sports, news)
  • little knick knacks that motivate or inspire
VIEW my Amazon Wishlist
If you can help and would like to donate some items, please email me at