Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Friday, June 26, 2015

Art Therapy: Drawing your Cancer Cells

It is no secret that Teen with a Dream truly embraces the benefits of art therapy and the profound impact that it can have on pediatric cancer patients. Today's portion of your Summer Research Project, take a look at Google images of your cancer cells.

Once you have a better idea of the visual of your cancer cells, take some time today and express them through drawing them, painting them, whatever you like best! You can draw them accurately or you can draw what you think they look like or how they make you feel.

Ultimately our goal through this portion of the project is to really get a visual understanding of your cancer's workings that provide you with just another opportunity to educate yourself and more importantly empower your self!

In our post picture you will see Hodgkin's Lymphoma cells which is the type of cancer our founder, Spencer Harrison had.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Treatment Information Resource

Building on extensive research for your Summer Research Project, we would like to share with you this great resource provided by the National Cancer Institute. It is within this resource that you will be able to be directly connected to information regarding treatment specific to your type of cancer!

As we are going to begin wrapping up this Summer Research project over the next two days lets take a look back at the information that we have discussed and will be in the project:

  1. MY Cancer Information
  2. Emotional Aspects
  3. Side Effects
  4. Inspirational Figures in my cancer community
  5. Cancer Journal 
  6. Knowledge is Power

Also if you missed our post on choosing credible resources check out our post here!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Knowledge is Power

As you continue on with your Summer Research Project journey, remember that even though you may feel overwhelmed with the information that you find at times, this knowledge provides you with empowerment. 

Today, as you continue your research seek out people, stories and environments that inspire you. Take a breath and take control, because cancer is not who you are.  

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Cancer Journal

Happy Tuesday, Dreamers. Today's portion of the Summer Research Project does not necessarily require any research at all. Your focus will be creating a Cancer Journal. This journal will be the place where you can vent your daily emotions as you go through your journey. 

We have discussed the benefits of journaling within pasts blog posts and feel that is an important aspect to incorporate within this project. 

Examples of things you may keep in this journal:
  1. How you are feeling during treatment
  2. How you are feeling after treatment
  3. Jot down both emotional highs and lows
Eventually you may be able to analyze a pattern of emotions from this journal and may be able to cope even more effectively. 

To further incorporate it into this project you may also want to include writing down emotions in relation with: 
  • The facts surrounding your particular cancer
  • Side Effects 
Now, the only time that this portion of the project would require research would be if journaling is not right for you, you may consider looking for alternative coping methods and emotional support techniques. Check out all of our Emotional Support posts HERE

Monday, June 22, 2015

Side Effects: Summer Research Project

Happy Monday! Today we will jump back into our Summer Research Project, last week we focused on [1] credible resources and research tips [2] basic facts [3] inspirational figures. Today we will kick off this week's research with researching side effects of your cancer and treatment options.

Side Effects Research Topic- Short Term + Chronic 

  1. What are potential side effects of cancer and its treatment in general?
  2. Are there side effects that are particular to my cancer versus other cancers? What are they?
  3. What are some ways that I can combat some of these side effects?
  4. Are there any preventative steps I can take to help limit chronic side effects?
After this portion of the research, analyze how these side effects may impact you on an emotional level. 
  1. How will I manage these side effects?
  2. What is my plan of action when these side effects are acting up?
  3. In what ways will I cope with these? 

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Summer Research Project Example: Part One

Throughout last week you focused on the following topics to research and record regarding your cancer:
  1. Fundamental Facts about your cancer
  2. Emotional Aspects
  3. Inspirational Individuals
We also discussed credible resources and researching tips. Today we would like to share with you our founder, Spencer Harrison's research for his own summer project! 

Next week we will be discussing even more aspects to add to your Summer Research Project!

Friday, June 19, 2015

SPLURGE! Friday: Summer Hats

Image by A Crafter XD

Happy SPLURGE! Friday Dream Team! We are taking a break from our Summer Research Project and spending today looking at D.I.Y Summer Hats! You may be familiar with hair-loss as a side effect of chemo, and you have to start getting creative with your head wear.

A Crafter XD shares lots of free patterns and tutorials to ensure you can find the perfect summer hat- and it gives you a great craft for the day! Below you can check out the different choices of summer hats:

  1. Shell stitch Sun hat by Daisy Cottage Designs
  2. Granny stitch Sun hat by My Merry Messy Life
  3. Toddler Sun hat by Stitch 11
  4.  3D  flower lattice Sun hat by Dearest Debi
  5. Tranquil waves toddler Sun hat by The Crochet Lounge
  6. Toddler cotton Sun hat by My Hobby is Crochet
  7. Belmont Sun hat by KatiDCreations
  8. Vintage tulip Sun hat by MNE Crafts

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Credible Resources: Summer Research Projects

Tomorrow we will be taking a break from our Teen with a Dream Summer Research Project for SPLURGE! Friday.

So, for today we want to share with you a few credible resources that are abundant with information. Although these are just a sliver of the great resources out there-it is important to make sure that you are using good resources to gather your information [especially if you are getting it from the internet!].

As a reminder we focused on the following sections this week for your Summer Research Project....

  1. Fundamental Facts + Knowledge About Your Cancer
  2. Emotional Aspects
  3. Inspirational Individuals 

[Key Research Tips to Keep in Mind]
  1. Don't settle for one opinion, or one resource! Make sure to pull from a multitude of perspectives, cancer can be a scary topic so make sure not to settle with only one source of information.
  2. Take hand written notes as you compile your research.
  3. Use resources beyond the internet-go to your local library and check out books! You could even ask your doctor for recommendations.
  4. Soak in all the information and then condense to the bare necessities.
  5. Don't be afraid to ask questions from the professionals! Sometimes the best resources can be an experienced individual-your nurse, your doctor, a cancer survivor etc!

American Childhood Cancer Organization - Get the Facts Page

Kids v Cancer - Facts Page

Check out our Pediatric Cancer Resources Tab for additional resources!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Part Three: Inspirational Individuals

Moving forward with our Summer Research Project, today's focus will be finding an individual that inspires you that is within your cancer community! It is our hope that you are able to feel a spark of inspiration from someone that has your similar cancer. Research their journey and seek out any tid bits of advice that they may have through getting through it.

Now, you may already have an individual in mind that inspires you who does not share your cancer. If this is the case, try to analyze why this person is inspirational to you in connection to your cancer journey. This is important to do to in order to really delve into the world of your particular cancer!

Key points to focus on during this assignment would be:

  • The person's diagnosis story
  • What about this person inspires you?
  • How can you use this inspiration to get through your own  cancer journey?
  • What can you do to inspire others that have cancer?

Check out our Inspirational Blog Posts HERE or through our Inspirational Tab on our Home blog page to see if any of our shared stories inspire you!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Knowing the emotional aspects of Cancer: Summer Research Project

Yesterday, we introduced our Summer Research Project. We will hit the ground running and share with you the two main topic areas of your first assignment of this project.

Research Topic Number One: Fundamental Facts of Your Cancer

  • What does your particular cancer do? 
  • How does it effect your body?
  • What are your treatment options?
  • Research about your hospital and doctors.

Research Topic Number Two: Emotional Aspects

Additionally today, we would like to focus on a couple different aspects that deal with the emotional side of cancer.

1. Recognize how this project will ultimately provide you with emotional support during your cancer journey.

As we briefly mentioned yesterday, by empowering yourself with knowledge will give you a sense of control and power back during a chaotic time. You will be equipped with knowledge of knowing the inner workings of your type of cancer.

2. Discovering, knowing and coping with emotional side effects of cancer.

Today, research various ways to cope with being diagnosed, getting through treatment and post-cancer. There are a multitude of credible resources that you will be able to pull from. This aspect of the project allows you to discover which type of coping mechanisms are best for you during your journey. You may realize that journaling helps you, for others simply talking about your journey may assist you.

Check out all of our posts regarding Emotional Support HERE to see if there is a tactic that you see would fit best.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Summer Research Project: Knowing your cancer inside and out!

We are excited to begin a two week journey with you as we share our Summer Research Project Proposal with you and your family. After being diagnosed with cancer, you are flooded with information and even more questions. This can create even more stress during a chaotic time.
That is why we would like to invite you to embark on our Teen with a Dream Summer Research Project!

What is this project?
Over the course of two weeks we will post certain aspects of research that you should focus on. Each section of this project is fairly broad and leaves room for flexibility and the opportunity to take it where you want. At the end of this two week duration you will have abundant information and fundamental research on the following topics:

  1. YOUR particular cancer, how it works, what it looks like on this inside
  2. Type of Treatment
  3. Side Effects
  4. Emotional Aspects
  5. Inspirational Figures 
  6. Your desired communication and discussion plan about cancer
Each one of these sections will have subtopics that we will share with you through out this project.

What will the end result of this project look like?
Although this is primarily up to you we would suggest to record and compile all of your research and put have a hard copy for you and your family. This will be discussed more closed to the end of this project.

Why would this project be beneficial for me?
By researching, evaluating and coping with your particular type of cancer will empower you with knowledge and provide you with the ability to discuss it openly and factually with your loved ones. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Teen with a Dream Program's Breakdown

Teen with a Dream is dedicated to enriching the lives of pediatric cancer patients and the lives of their families. Today, we would like to share with you our breakdown of programs that ultimately accomplish our mission.


  • College Scholarships
  • Tutor Hours
  • Laptop for Learning

  • Compassion Project
  • Chemo Day Care Bags
  • Therapeutic Art Sessions
  • Support Groups
  • Staffed Therapist for families 
  • Movie Premieres
  • Germ-Lite Holiday Parties
  • Girl’s Night Out 
  • Boys Night Out
  • Firehouse Fun
  • Princess Party
  • Comfort Rooms
  • DVD Libraries
  • Game Systems
  • Giving Trees 
If you know a pediatric cancer patient that could benefit from one of our signature programs please contact us at kati@teenwithadream.org

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

4K For Cancer "Every Mile Matters"

Today's Pediatric Cancer Program Resource is 4K For Cancer! Here is a little about who they are and what they strive to do!

What is 4K For Cancer?
The 4K for Cancer is composed of young adults from all over the world who have a spirit for adventure and a desire to changes the lives of those affected by cancer.  We are siblings, children, grand childrenand friends of those affected by cancer.  We are cancer survivors riding to support those who supported us.  We are motivated individuals who have seen the destruction the disease can cause and want to do something to fight back.  We are about people and action. We are not just a cross-country journey – but instead a movement of young adults making our way cross country to attack this disease head on.  We believe in the power of building a team and supporting our fellow participants. No one will be left alone or behind and we will support each other during the difficult times.  We are the 4K for Cancer
The History of the 4K for Cancer
The Early Years | 2001 – 2008
The 4K for Cancer originally began as the Hopkins 4K for Cancer in the fall of 2001. A group of undergraduate students at the Johns Hopkins University decided to combine their desire to fight against cancer with their dream of cycling across the country.  The 4K was founded by Ryan Hanley, and the inaugural 4,000-mile journey was inspired by the memory of his father who died in 1995 from cancer.  For the next seven years, the 4K continued to operate as student group with an annual summer ride from Baltimore to San Francisco.

The Expansion Years | 2009 – 2011
For the 2009 ride, the 4K for Cancer became an independent non-profit organization, governed by a board of directors and eventually a full-time staff member.  In the summer of 2011, the 4K expanded to include two additional routes.  Riders were then able to choose to ride from Baltimore to Portland, San Francisco, or Seattle

The 4K and UCF | Fall 2011 – Present
After the conclusion of the 2011 rides, the 4K and UCF officially merged into one organization. From that point on, the 4K has operated as a program of the UCF. The merger enhanced the ability of the 4K to make a positive impact in the cancer community. With the strength and support of the UCF, the 2013 4K participants raised nearly $800,000, and in 2014 over 1 million dollars in the fight against cancer.
2015 will represent the 13th year the 4K will journey across America.  This summer we will offer our four cross country bicycle rides and two runs across America.  The bar has been set very high, but the summer of 2015 has the potential to be the most successful year yet for the 4K for Cancer!

Each year 4K participants identify various service opportunities along their route. In the past service opportunities have included visiting cancer patients to deliver our chemo care bags, taking part in community dinners, and giving cancer awareness presentations.  In 2014 we are rededicating our efforts towards expanding our service events through new and creative ideas.

Check out their full site and find even more information here!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Emotional Support: Self Confidence Activity

Today we would like to share with you a Self Confidence Boosting activity that is appropriate for all ages from Polk Mentoring Alliances. 

Read up on this Self Portrait Activity that will help boost your child's confidence:

This is a good initial activity for any age level. The self-portrait can be easily and effectively executed as a sketch, drawing or painting in a wide variety of art media, such as chalk, pencil, ink, charcoal, crayon, pastel, water color or tempera. Length of the activity will be largely determined by age level and the particular medium selected.

Self-portraits may be created impromptu from memory or from mirrors. Be accepting and encouraging during your mentee‟s first try. Wait a few weeks, then try again. It is helpful if you work along with your mentee on a portrait of yourself.

Create occasions for displaying the self-portraits frequently. Birthdays and special projects provide ideal opportunities for using portraits. 

If your kiddo does this activity take a picture and submit it to dream@teenwithadream.org 

Monday, June 8, 2015

What to do on a rainy summer day: Indoor Treasure Hunt

When you have little ones in the house, you may know the feeling of being confined in the house with stir crazy kiddos! That is why today's Tips and Tricks is a solution to that problem!

Here at Teen with a Dream headquarters we have been experience lots and lots rain-so we wanted to share this awesome tip with all of you!

We have found this great resource to start off your own treasure hunt from iMom

1. If you’re in a hungry mood, go here first and find some food.(Hide the clue in the kitchen in your pantry or where you store food.)

2. Now you’re on your second clue, these go on before your shoes.(Hide this clue in your child’s sock drawer.)

3. If you want your teeth to shine, pick this up and spend some time.(Hide this clue by your child’s toothbrush)

4. If you want to learn and grow, turn the page, get in the know.(Hide this in a book, with part of it sticking out from the pages.)

5. Add some color to your days! Pick these up; you’re on your way.(Hide this clue near some crayons.)

6. Take a walk and step outside, this is where you go to ride.(Hide this clue near your car, a bike, or even a scooter.)

7. Time to chill, time to think; please go here for a cool, cool drink.(Hide this clue in, or tape on, your refrigerator.)

8. Keep it clean and keep it dry. Can you guess? Come on, just try!(Hide this clue near your washer or dryer.)

9.You’re almost at the very end, but this is where your guests come in.(Hide this clue at your front door.)

10. The final clue. The final prize. Look into this to see your eyes.(This is where you’ll place the final prize for your treasure hunt.)

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Summer Fried Rice Recipe

Today's recipe is for Summer Fried Rice!

  • Summer squash matchsticks
  • Leftover white rice
  • egg, beaten
  • Sliced scallions
  • Splash of oyster sauce
  • Chopped fresh basil

  1. Stir Fry Squash matchsticks
  2. With leftover rice, beaten egg and scallions
  3. Splash with oyster sauce
  4. Sprinkle with chopped basil

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Get a Free Teeth Whitening and help a child with cancer!

All patient’s new and current are eligible for free whitening and with each whitening Arbor Dental Group will donate to the charity Smiles for Life and Teen with a Dream!

For every teeth whitening scheduled, $50.00 will be donated to Teen with a Dream and provide aid & comfort to pediatric cancer patients!

Contact them today to schedule your FREE teeth whitening!
CALL TODAY 720-943-3761
Call for Eligibility Details

Friday, June 5, 2015

DIY Glow Firefly Jars on SPLURGE! Friday

Happy Friday Dream Team! There is nothing that gives you that feels more like summer than the sight of fireflies! If you are like us here at Teen with a Dream headquarters, these beautiful bugs are not native to our Colorado state--so we are going to create our very own!

These D.I.Y. Glow Firefly Jars are a great craft for you and the kids! Note: This craft can get a little messy so be prepared!

What you will need:

  • Glass jar
  • Glow sticks (you can get them at the dollar store)
  • Sprinkle Glitter 
  • Rubber Gloves to protect your hands
  • Scissors

  1. Use scissors to cut the ends off the glow sticks....This is the messy part-so use caution! 
  2. Open your glass jar and shake the opened glow sticks into the jar. 
  3. A tip for getting that splatter effect comes from banging it against the sides of the jar
  4. Add in some of your sprinkle glitter into the jar, trying to get it to stick on the sides over the glowstick fluid.
  5. Tighten the lid, if you have really little ones around the house you may consider gluing it shut
  6. The average lifespan of these jars is around 6-8 hours so plan accordingly:)

Image Source

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Summer Camps for Pediatric Cancer Patients

Happy Thursday Dream Team! For today's program resource we would like to share with you this wonderful resource provided by NeedyMeds.

We have talked a lot about summer camps over the past week and found a complete list of summer camps specifically for pediatric cancer patients across the nation!

Check out their full list  HERE and see if there are any in your area!