Monday, July 17, 2017

Getting Back to Remembering

I've been so busy with my comic book store over the last three years that I've neglected this website and I'm sorry. The whole reason for doing it was to give me a place to collect memories of Carroll and maybe Lilly would use it later for a place to learn more about Mama, as well as you folks.

It was ten years ago on July 14th that they removed the mass in Carroll's temple. I thank the skill of Dr. Cattorini for helping give my wife two and a half more years to live. May 10th would have been her 45th birthday. January 30th would have had us celebrating our 12th anniversary, she would have eaten birthday cake with Lilly on her 7th birthday January 2nd, and of course, it was four years ago on February 3rd that she went ahead of us. I hadn't really thought how I say that until I saw it in print. She left us. Sounds like she did it on purpose and we all know that is not the case.

Anyway, I happened to be cruising my Facebook feed and came across this video. The song is one that I played at the funeral. It was a favorite of mine and Carroll's and it's where Carroll resides, somewhere over the rainbow.

The story behind the singer is tragic and lends to the solemnity of the song. In the video you can see how much the singer was loved and how many people turned out for the ceremony interning his ashes to the ocean. Beautiful song, beautiful video.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Dallas-Ft. Worth Brain Tumor Walk 2015

Yep, that’s right. It’s been a year. This will be the our third walking without Carroll, but we know that she walks with us in spirit. I’ve been lax in getting this info out, so I’ve gotta step up my game a little.


I’ll try to keep this as simple as possible because the website is still a little hard to navigate. Even for me. There are several ways to participate. You can join the team and walk with us. That means you pay $25 and you get a page to gussy up real pretty and send the link to all of your friends and try to get them to donate, then you walk with us. Or, you can be a virtual participant. This is for those that can’t be there to walk with us, but want to help out in the fundraising department by having a page that they can send all of their friends to and collect donations. You’ll get an event t-shirt just as if you were at the event. You can just donate to the team or me, either one. If you donate to me, it is added to my funding goals. I set them a little low this year due to me running a full-time business and wrangling a kindergartner, but it can always be raised. And you can also just donate to Team Kiwi itself. And the last option is to just volunteer. It doesn’t cost anything, you get a cool volunteer t-shirt and you get to help out in a great cause.

So, if you would like to join TEAM KIWI, volunteer or donate to the team, then click TEAM KIWI.

If you would like to donate to my page or join TEAM KIWI, then click JAMES PICKERING.

I’m hoping to have another great turnout as we always do. If you’ve got ideas for ways to raise money, feel free to share them on the Facebook Page - Dallas/Ft. Worth Brain Tumor Walk - Team Kiwi. If you’d like to be on the mailing list, send me your email to walkwithkiwi (at) maildrop (dot) cc. If ya’ll don’t know how to turn that into an email, what are you doing on a computer? lol Seriously.

Love to all and let’s start raising some money!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

The Game is Afoot: The Dallas/Ft. Worth Brain Tumor Society 5K Walk

I wouldn’t normally look forward to this time of year because it always reminded me of what Carroll and I were dealing with. Now, I look forward to it because it gives me the chance to tap into Carroll’s spirit of giving and help fight the war against this disease.

The event is being held on November 8, 2014 which is a Saturday. It’s looks to be even larger than last year and I love being a part P1010202of it. I already have a few team members and would love to have some more. Not only to walk with us, but to help raise money. You can donate to me or you can join the team and get your own web page to take donations on. Follow our Facebook page at This is the easiest way to keep up, even if you don’t have a Facebook page. When you register, I’ll send an email to the one you logged in with. I’ll keep them to about every 2 to 3 weeks and if you want to opt out, just let me know.

We will also have a t-shirts provided free this year. It would seem that we won a contest of sorts and all we have to do is submit a design and the organization will pay for the production of the shirts.

So, go to We Are Team Kiwi and register to help fund raise and walk with us, or you can go to my personal page at James Pickering to donate. Regardless, please pass this message on to anyone that can be of help to this cause. I have seen too many people lose their lives to brain cancer in the last few years and I want to be a part of the generation that stops it in it’s tracks. Help me do that. Please. For me, my daughter, and my wife, Kiwi.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Happy Birthday, My Love!

Happy Birthday to my loving departed. She would have been forty-two this year. The mother of a beautiful, smart, active four year old daughter. Still, doing her best to make sure everyone else was taken care of. In a way, I picture her doing that from on high as she rides butterflies, as Lilly puts it. She joined Grandpa Jim, and since, has been joined by Uncle Jeremy, her brother-in-law. Lilly and I say goodnight to them at every bedtime. She sleeps better knowing that we've talked to them. I want to write more, but it's hard. Over a year gone and it is still hard to comprehend. We didn't have a birthday party for her like we did last year. Graduations are going on around us, Mother's Day, more birthdays, and life in general. I figure everyone will remember her in their own way, but I would like to remind everyone of how giving she was and ask that you give in some way to someone else. Not today, but somewhere in the near future. Love to all. We miss you, Mama.
Carroll and Julie DeChristefaro on Vacation
The photo is of Carroll and her friend, Julie, on vacation and having some fun with a portrait. Troublemakers.

Monday, April 7, 2014

On Butterfly Wings

Carroll and her sister Maggie

I haven't posted on here in a while. Been dealing with the loss of my little brother among other things. But that doesn't mean we don't have more memories to post. My brother's death was upsetting to Lilly but she handled it in stride. Seems since we've lost Mama, she has been part of the funeral of five fish, two chicks, and then this recent loss. I know that she is handling it well because of this. Grandma Bitsy told me that one evening Lilly told her that Mama was riding butterflies in heaven. Don’t know where she got that from, but that’s what she said. Then upon finding out about Jeremy’s passing, she got quiet. I asked her if that made her sad and she said yes. I said that that was okay and if she felt like crying, then that was okay, too. She shook her little head. Then she looked up at me and asked, “are there enough butterflies in heaven for Uncle Jeremy to ride, too?” It makes me smile every time I think about it, that Grandpa Jim, Kiwi, Uncle Jeremy, two cats (Jade & Tigger), five fish, and two baby chicks are riding butterflies. Well, maybe not the fish and chicks.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Super Bowl Commercial Was Our Life

Kind of funny that they aired this the day before the one year anniversary of Carroll's passing. It hit me kind of hard, because this WAS me and Carroll. The five years before Lilly came along, we took long drives. We would drive for hours, just hold hands and watch the countryside. This commercial is how I see some of our most memorable moments, enjoying each other's company and nothing but the road whine and the radio to keep us company.

But, it also showed the trips that we took, knowing that some day she wouldn't be there and we just bathed in the moment of togetherness and hoping for that dawn of sunlight that might be a cure or at least a diagnosis of remission. I miss my beloved everyday. This video helps me remember some of our moments. It's strange to say that about a car commercial, but it does.


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Reaching Out

I think I’ve donated to a dozen charities since Carroll’s passing. Nothing like losing someone close to you to make you feel close to those that are suffering through the same ailments.

I received this video and though I don’t normally watch them because I’m running out of Kleenex, I did this one. And yes, the waterworks were on. Below is a video of a young 12 year old girl with brain cancer, Olivia Wise. She wanted to record Katy Perry’s song ‘Roar’ and someone stepped up and got her some studio time. Katy Perry has some very inspirational songs and this one is no different. There is also a link for a video reply that Katy sent to Olivia. Under the videos are links to donation pages to the Liv Wise Fund.

Donate to the Live Wise Fund.

I donated to Olivia and I’m also walking with my 34 team mates this weekend at the DFW Brain Tumor 5K Walk. If you would like to donate or walk, go to If you’d like to walk you need to register before Thursday, November 7.

Katy Perry’s Video Reply