I think you all know that I am incredibly lucky. One of the ways that I am blessed is to have a very unique community of amazing chicks in my corner. These women are not only gorgeous (and fashionable, with exceptional taste, grace and enviable hair) but also smart, witty and talented writers. And by making the choice to share their voices, they have become incredibly successful - both for their drool worthy taste in all things aesthetic, and for their creativity, punchy writing and ability to somehow pull all of this together into a dope little website which people (like me) obsessively read every single day.

They are the bloggers. This is my "Blog Roll". 

Today, I came across this amazing post "The Importance of Paying it Forward As a Blogger" on the Independent Fashion Bloggers website. It was written by Emily Van Der Beek of Isn't That Charming. And it was about ME! well, I got a shout out, but same same.


Now, when I read any kind of post about me, I always cry. Always. I can't help it. How, how did I get to be this lucky? Why are so many people pulling for me? And why are they all so good looking??

By writing about me on their blogs these beautiful, beautiful girls show that true beauty comes from the inside, which of course helps me feel better about my lack of hair, not to mention the universe in general which continues to insist on messing with me (I have not even mentioned that I got called for jury duty. Again. For the 11th year in a row.)

These amazing women, from all over the country, have become my champions and heros. And so, because it's Friday, I wanted to share some of them with you. Here is a roundup of what I secretly call in my head my "hot girl bunny army - comm wing" (oops, secrets out) and let me know if I missed someone, because some of these girls have been silent warriors, and their message of love keeps spreading and spreading.

General of East Coast Operations: Christin of WithaCH


I read Christin's blog EVERY SINGLE DAY. On a timer, the way I take my medicine. Because every single day she makes me laugh my tush off. And we all know this is definitely the best medicine, the thing that keeps my stupid cancer in check.  Christin is gorgeous, she is featured in Glamour magazine gorgeous, she is looks like celebrity fill in the blank_____ gorgeous (I think Ashley Greene) but she is also smart, and freaking funny as hell. 

She is a freaking warrior, who has been sending so much love my way I can't believe we have never actually met in person (I dream of the day this happens). She has inspired a small legion of other bloggers to advocate on my behalf. If she wasn't the Social Media Goddess of BaubleBar (aka the hotness) I could also see her as Olivia on Scandal (I love that show.) 

From WACH:

thank you.

I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason and that everyone that comes into your life has a purpose. There are some days that I think that I’ve outgrown blogging, that its something I don’t have time for anymore and then something like thisthis and this(to name a few) happens and I am so incredibly inspired by the blogging community.
You guys, I honestly cannot thank you enough for the kindness that you’ve shown in regards to this post. I am 100% blown away. Putting Dena’s story up here was the least I could do and I thought maybe someone would donate but I never in my wildest dreams thought that so many of you would share her story and donate. Words can’t even describe how happy all of your comments, tweets, emails and texts have meant to me and I know they mean even more to Dena.
I needed this. A lot. And I just wanted to thank you all, so very much, for everything. For always.

General of Infantry: Grace of Stripes & Sequins 

I met Grace through Christin (she is also a chief hotness at Baublebar) and she then proceeded to wave her magic wand of love and kindness and send a flood of amazing care packages, notes of love and generosity my way. I mean this and this  would not have happened without her. Her blog is also a must read for me because she is the dopest DIY expert on the planet. I think she's as good as PS I Made This...  which is saying a lot because PSIMT is the reason I love DIY in the first place, and basically the queen of modern, cool girl DIY. Grace is blessed with the ability to make friends everywhere she goes, and to inspire people to great generosity on behalf of others. She is like a fairy godmother, and I don't even hate her for having the most amazing hair of anyone I have ever seen before. 

From S&S:
Here’s the thing… it’s really easy to view our lives under a macro lense, only focusing on the moment and what we are feeling and our own little bubbles.  And then you meet someone like Dena.  She’s two years younger than me and battling breast cancer.  She is on her sixth round of chemo, unable to work, and dealing with staggering medical bills.   Yet, her attitude is 100x better than mine.  Also, she’s turned her blog into this amazing source of inspiration and information that I’m sure fellow cancer patients are able to benefit from.
I spent a lot of today reading through Dena’s blog archives.  Mostly just being amazed and inspired/awe-struck by her attitude.  I’m resolving to at least try to take more control over my own thoughts.  Not to sweat the small stuff, and to be more grateful and appreciative.  Basically, to have higher quality thoughts, if that makes sense.  I challenge you guys to do the same, and also to donate if you can.  I can’t really think of a better cause.

The "Foot" Soldier: Alexandria Hubbard of The Saga of a Twenty Something


Alex is running the Boston Marathon as part of a team that is supporting the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. The goal? To help find a cure for breast cancer. So far, her team of 500 has raised more than $600,000; their goal for this year's marathon $4.6 million. They've still got 12 weeks until the marathon, so she is confident they'll be able to get it done!

Alex also runs a really rad blog, which reads like my personal diary or maybe just my browsing history. Either way, I feel like we are soul twins. Also, I spent all day yesterday googling this dead girlfriend hoax business as well.

From TSOATS:
Let's get some link action going.
+ If you click any of my links today, make it Dena's blog. Dena is an amazing soul. Dena is 29 and she had breast cancer that has metastasized in her bones. And even with all of this, she has a positive outlook on life. And I'm running the Boston Marathon for her. If you can, help her out. Even if you think you can't, $10 does help. And if you want to help me try to cure cancer in our lifetime, I'd greatly appreciate even a $5 donation. Every little bit does help.
+ If you haven't read about the crazy Manti Te'o dead girlfriend hoax you should probably just read the Deadspin article and go ahead and scratch your head alongside me. Seriously.
I hope you all have an amazing long weekend. Have fun. Do something different. Hug people you love. And remember how amazing your life really is.


The Seasoned Fighter: Liz of Freckles in the Fog


Now Liz and I worked together approximately a million years ago (as she mentions below) but I never knew she was such a rockstar writer. I have her to credit with my favorite song, Same Love, and also with writing this amazing post that I still can't read without getting a little watery.

From FITF:
dena and i worked together for the hot second and a half that i was at the jcc in san francisco.  i must admit that tending to the campers (and more honestly, the staff) kept me away from many of the other people and programs at the organization but dena stuck out from day 1.  young and smart, not afraid to use her voice and stand up for what she believed in, a love for the gym that i could never fully understand and a banging body (hmmm, wonder if those two things were connected?).  as if all this weren’t enough – girlfriend introduced me to dry shampoo.  clearly someone special.
not only has dena been fighting off breast cancer over the last few months, but she’s been sharing her story each and every step of ther positive energy is like nothing i have ever encountered before (but it does help me better understand her relationship with the gym).  she’s been offering tips and tricks that she’s learned along the way but most of all she’s giving a voice to a journey that, unfortunately, too many young women are taking.  i can’t tell you how much i respect and admire this girl.
and now, dena needs our help.  her diagnosis has changed and so her course of treatment has changed.  what once was hoped to be cured with chemo and surgery is now going to be treated – long-term.  until, as dena so eloquently says, science catches up and a cure is found for what is now – incurable.  dena has great doctors and great care and health insurance but there are still an unbelievable number of expenses and this is where we can do something to help dena – who by sharing her story, is helping so many.  she admits that asking for help is hard – but for those of us who are feeling like we really want to do something, dena’s STANDBY PAGE offers a tangible way to make a difference.
every little bit helps.
wishing you all peace, love and a monthly breast exam

The Comm Specialist: Jessie of The Loud & Clear


Jessie and I met through a very dear friend of ours at her wedding, and like all of these amazing women, she is just stunningly good looking, both inside and out. So when she heard I was fundraising she asked if it was OK if she could share my story on her blog to try to help raise some more much needed dough for my ridiculous health care costs. My response? Of course, duh, you are amazing. 

From TL&C:
She’s so much like many of you – consciously living a healthy lifestyle, exercising, writing a style blog (with fun DIY projects), generally just being her fabulous self. Unlike many of you, she is in the process of undergoing chemotherapy and coming to terms with the fact that she will have a bilateral mastectomy when she’s finished with chemo.
Reading through the archives of her blog had an impact on me. I met Dena years ago through a good friend of mine and I have quietly followed her via Instagram, Pinterest and her blog. I still laugh every time I think of the time Dena, myself and a gaggle of other girls physically (somewhat violently) dodged a wedding bouquet being tossed in our direction – only to find Kate standing alone in the middle of the crowd holding it! (Guess who got married next??)

The General of All Things Delicious: Gabi, from BrokeAssGourmet


If you have not made these cookies (or do not own this cookbook) you are seriously missing out. Go buy it right now - it also makes excellent presents, so excellent in fact that it sold out over Christmas. So channel that FOBO and buy 2 (one for a gift)


From BAG:

It is unbelievable. I gripped my phone, silent with shock, tears pooling in my eyes.
"What can I do?" Evan asked me gently.
I know that what he was asking was what could he do to comfort me, but as he said it, I realized that his question was really what I should be asking myself.What can I do? What can we as a community do? 
As it turns out, we can do a lot.
Before I get to the recipe, I have two favors to ask of you. 
The first one is to please, please consider making a donation to our fund for Dena. The first major treatment she has to pay for out of pocket is in 2 weeks, and we really want to make sure it's well-covered.
The second thing--and I realize it may sound vague, but that's only because there is so much room for interpretation--is to look within your own life and your own community at ways that you can use your skills and talents to help other people or causes. One thing I'm learning now is that there are so many different ways to make the world a better place--and even the smallest courses of action count. 
What are your talents? What can you do?

The Mercenary of Social: Jolie O'Dell 


Did you know that Miss O'Dell not only rights controversy stirring Tech sexism articles like this but that she is also one of the best cooks and table setters in the entire world? Yup, she is, and she writes this gorgeous home blog called the Single Housewife. Oh and one tweet from her and I get a deluge of love, generosity and introductions from amazing and generous resources all over the world, like Andrew Schiff, founder of Someonewith.com (the best stocked breast cancer website I have ever seen, and I have seen a ton. I use something from the care package they sent me EVERY SINGLE DAY and he found me through Jolie's divine intervention.)



The Original Bunny: Julia of Tartans & Sequins

Julia taught me how to date. She also taught me how to rock a statement necklace (with plaid) and basically just dress myself in general, as seen here, here, etc etc  And then she wrote this post asking other women to take care of themselves and their breasts, and basically just spreading the essential message of breast cancer awareness and supporting breast cancer research whenever you can. 

From T&S: 

I LOVE the color pink. It has always been my favorite color but recently it became a little more important to buy pink things. Specifically pink things that supported Breast Cancer research. Because if I could chose for none of you to ever have to hear a friend sharing how their mom couldn't tell her friends about their diagnosis, I would. Every purchase of a BCR product makes that more of a reality. I'm not asking you to make EVERY purchase a BCR one, but if two products are almost identical and one supports Breast Cancer research and one doesn't, why not choose the pink one? :) 



Special Forces: Saschka of Standbuy.us 

To call this a blog is sort of like calling chocolate a food. I mean technically, yes it is a food. But really, isn't it so much more? So, so much more. This is not a blog, it's really a platform, but it is so dope I can't even describe it - I just want you to go and look at it yourselves. And read Saschka's story for why she created it, (but bring tissues.) 

From SB.us

The goal of Standbuy is to provide a focused, supportive and easy to use platform so that others might find a little more room in their day for healing instead of worrying about financial stress. We are deeply committed to doing everything we can to help you connect to your community and to make access to help easy and direct.

My response to Saschka: Oh and you have, you amazing hotness monster. You have. Plus your Sephora trick is LIFE CHANGING. 

More to come...


So I'm sure I am forgetting someone (DAMN YOU CHEMO BRAIN) but really, can someone please tell me, why are they all so good looking?? Why?

Love you lots and lots
SUCH GOOD NEWS
xoxo
Dena

P.S. I have decided that once I reach my fundraising goal any additional money, and any funds that we raise during my epic post chemo blow out celebration, will go to the Breast Cancer Emergency Fund, which bailed me out when I had an emergency and which is just another amazing thing to have in the universe - like hot girls who are also really smart and fun and generous and philanthropic.