Thursday, May 3, 2012

Every Day is a Good Day.

I am a cancer survivor.  I was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma a month after my 29th birthday. I did a course of chemo and radiation, and it worked beautifully.  I have been cancer-free for 7 years (and 1 month)!

Last month my 91-year-old Mema was diagnosed with breast cancer.  It is very slow moving, and not in her  lymph system.  Her oncologist is extremely optimistic about her diagnosis, and she will be cured with a simple mastectomy, which is scheduled for next week.

I was filing her insurance authorization paperwork today in her cancer binder (On a side note, did you know that cancer patients carry a binder to all of their doctors appointments?  That way all of the doctors can see at a glance what all the other doctors are doing.  It's a nifty system.), and it occurred to me how grateful I am that I'm here to take care of her.  How grateful I am that I survived so that I could have Mims, and celebrate birthdays and anniversaries and weddings and brand-new nephews.

Mema needed a new mug wrap to protect her hands from the heat of her morning cup of coffee, so I made her one with a crocheted awareness ribbon button.  I think it turned out really cute, so I'd like to share my pattern with you. I also made a visual tutorial to go with the pattern, grade-school-science-fair-style, all in one picture.

The Awareness Ribbon Button
approx 1" across
Aunt Lydia's Size 3 Crochet Cotton (Black and Pink)
Size D crochet hook
Sharp yarn needle
3/4" safety pins (optional)

R1: 5 sc in a magic loop, pull loop tight and sl st into first sc (5 st)
R2: ch 1, 2 sc in each st around, sl st into first sc to complete round (10 st)
R3: ch 1, (2 sc in next st, sc) 5 times, sl st into first sc to complete round (15 st)
R4: ch 1, sc in each st around, sl st into first sc to complete round (15 st)
Stop.  Get out the pink yarn and embroider the awareness ribbon shape onto the front of the button.  Don't worry about trimming the ends too closely, you can just tuck them inside as you finish the button.
R5: ch 1, (sc 2 st tog, sc) 5 times, sl st into first sc to complete round (10 st)
R6: ch 1, (sc 2 st tog) 5 times, sl st into first sc to complete round (5 st)
Finish off, leaving a long tail.  Flatten button, tucking any stray threads inside before you stitch up the back.  Tack the button together around it's outer edge.  Enjoy your new button!

 I made some that I attached a small safety pin to the back of, so that they could be worn.  I'm planning to give them to my mom and sister, so that we can all show support for my grandma.

I think that these buttons would be great for fundraising, particularly for families that are in crisis who really need donations to help pay for treatments.  You could give the buttons away with any donation to the family, or you could sell them for $2 (or $5 or $20) each, depending on how much money you're trying to raise.  I'm not a fundraising expert by any means, I just think it might work.  I put some on my business cards, and they turned out professional-looking enough that I would have bought one if I'd seen it out in the world, especially for charity.

I made the purple awareness ribbon in the picture for myself.  Purple is the color they use to represent Lymphoma and Leukemia.  I made it to remind myself that today is a really great day.  Every day that I have is a really great day.  Because I get to be here.


  1. I love those buttons!

    Congrats on living cancer-free for seven years (and one month)! This is a great project, and I can't wait to see what you'll come up with next.

  2. Thanks for sharing. You are an amazing person. I will sure make some buttons.
    I am not blessed like you to create patterns. When you have a moment, visit me at

    1. Hi Bindu! I am so glad you came by! I can't wait to visit your site!
      xoxo Jaime

  3. That is awesome! I had no idea you had gone through that. And Im sorry hear about what you guys are going through now... Im sure if you have looked at my facebook page, you can see i am passionate about Health and wellness and Hospice and Cancer awareness and research. Once I learn how to crochet this will definitely be something Id like to do... Let me know if you would be interested in working together on some projects as a joint venture to bring awareness and funds to cancer awareness. Have you thought about doing some of these things as a business? Maybe you already do... I dont know... I have some ideas if youd like to do something together sometime :)
    Prayers to your grandma and your family.

    1. Hi Kristy! That is something I would be very interested in. I will send you an email.
      xoxo Jaime

  4. Hi Jaime! Congrats on being cancer-free for seven-plus years, and I certainly hope that your Mema will be cancer-free, as well. I love your pattern for the Awareness Ribbon Buttons, and would like to make some of the mug-wraps with the buttons for breast-cancer charity. Can you post or send me the pattern you used for the mug-wrap, pretty please, as I love the way yours looks, and I'm the type of person that needs to follow a pattern. I look forward to your reply or post. My email is

    1. Hi BCSugar! There are 2 reasons why I didn't put the pattern up for my mug wrap: 1. All of the mugs in our house are different sizes, so there's not a single 'standard' size to make a pattern for - this mug is really slim, so the wrap only fits this ONE mug...
      and 2. I made this back at a time before I wrote everything I did down, so I don't even have the pattern to share. I want to say I made it with hdc stitches, size 3 crochet cotton and a size D hook...
      I wish I could help you more! I've spent the last 20 minutes wracking my brain trying to remember what I did. LOL!!! It's been a busy 5 months...
      xo Jaime


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