February, 2017 Edition 
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February is...
American Heart Month &  Black History Month   
Not only is heart disease  the leading cause of death, it affects African American men more than any other ethnicity. And of course, people with diabetes are at increased risk for heart disease due to the strong correlation between the two conditionsAll the more reason to take good and active care of your very amazing and incredible heart, as illustrated by these fun heart-i-facts

National Wear RED Day
Go Red, which took place on February 3rd,  was  about bringing awareness to the likewise high rates of heart disease and stroke for women. Awareness and prevention are key to saving lives - find ways to honor your heart

Grammy Awards 2017  
With some of the greatest music awards being given out this month, its time to reflect on dlife's list of numerous (although not exhaustive) incredible musicians with diabetesSomehow the 2014 Grammy's missed this adorable diabetes-themed take-off on Megan Trainor's "All About That Cure" performed by a kid quartet. Too cute! 

World Radio Day
February 13
World Radio Day  celebrates being able to dial in around the world to hear your favorite news or  treasured  tunes over the airwaves wherever you are, including Divabetic's DivaTalkRadio show and Diabetes Late Night. 

Happy Valentine's Day
February 14

Embracing both love, diabetes and yourself Insulinnation bares it all with some heart-to-heart talks about Love, Intimacy, Type 1 and more. 

Or, how about catch a few episodes of "Love, Life and Diabetes", a program where you can also submit a question (to be answered) by video! 

Heart's Desire Dolls
Amazingly adorable hand-made,  Raggedy-Ann reminiscent dolls are lovingly crafted by a seamstress in    Redlands, California    who is using them help raise money to fight diabetes!  

These dolls are sooooo sweet and can be personalized for those loved oneyou have in mind - no doubt you will also be tempted to have one created to satiate your own heart's desire; they are that precious !
A lot of love gets poured into these dolls - see the ordering information here! 

Roses are Red,
Violets are Blue And Violets are Edible Too! 
While roses are often the Valentine flower of choice, violets - as the official February flower -can hold their own on your plate! Diabetes Self Management explains how even common garden flowers like the Woodland violet can make its way into something surprisingly tasty and trendy on the table. 

Random Act of Kindness Day:
February 17
A perfect opportunity for your brand to generate some good vibes. Donate your time, money, product, or service and encourage your followers to join in on the kindness. 

Mardi Gras
February 28
Yes -    laissez les bons temps rouler ! In other words, "let the good times roll" for Mardi Gras 2017Although all is not quite as rosy for "Fat Tuesday" as it might seem. The New Orleans Musicians Clinic covers some interesting facts about both the heart and diabetes, including a song tribute, and maps out the tragic rates of diabetes in Louisiana.  

Furthermore, Lousiana has the highest rate of obesity in the country, significantly raising the risk for Type 2 and other illnesses. While France itself is doing better, it still has a diabetes rate that has climbed to nearly 7%.

So, go easy on that King Cake this year, instead, learn and practice those Mardi Gras dance steps

Save the Date - 
April 22, 2017
Looking for a do-good-and-have-fun-while- you're-at-it Valentine's Gift? Or inspired to help yourself or someone else get back on an exercise routine? Sign up yourself, friends, family and co-workers for the Diabuddies Dash in Keizer Oregon which will benefit CDFChoose from 5K or 10K. Learn more, be active and get inspired at Diabuddies Dash!

Jordan Stratton Scholar - Athlete of the Week
Stratton is a senior guard for the Oilers of Huntington Beach, CA. He is enrolled in AP English literature, AP physics, guitar, AP calculus and U.S. government. Stratton volunteers in the Children's Ministry at First Christian Church. He is involved with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes on campus, the California Scholarship Federation Club and he is a member of the Science and Math Competition team. Stratton has been nominated for the Tower Award in English Composition. He has been accepted to the University of Portland with a President's Scholarship. He plans to attend a four-year university and major in physics or geo-physics. He plans to pursue a Masters degree.

Recipe of the Month: 
Mardi Gras King Cake 
3 eggs, separated
3 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
1 packet Splenda
2 Tbsp Davincis or Torani Vanilla Syrup (Sugar Free)

1 oz cream cheese
3 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp heavy cream
1/4 tsp vanilla
1 Tbsp Torani or Davinci Vanilla Sugar Free syrup
6 drops liquid splenda

Colored erythritol in purple, green and yellow instructions 

En joy !


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CHC grad creates 'Camino Clutch' for women with diabetes

Reprinted with permission from the Chestnut Hill Local and Len Lear. 

Drawing, sketching, painting and designing are what Monica Vesci, 39, mastered as she earned her degree in Fine Arts from Chestnut Hill College. But like millions of women around the world, Monica has been shouldering the burdens and responsibilities of Type 1 Diabetes for a long time. Diagnosed at age 17 while living in upper New York state, Monica endured too many setbacks for an active young woman just entering Rochester Institute of Technology.

Thus, college was put on hold for a few years while she learned to manage her health. Later, strengthened by the support of family, physicians and diabetes educators, she went to CHC. "I had a great experience at CHC," she said. "I grew so much as a fine artist and really felt like I received a well-rounded education there. I loved every minute I got to spend in the art studio with Sr. Margie Thompson. She taught me so much, and I am forever grateful for her artistic guidance. She is an amazing artist and inspired me daily."

But tired of finding her used blood glucose test strips all over the house, her car, her clothing and her hair and needles in the bottoms of her purses, Monica wanted a more practical, safer and more stylish way to carry daily supplies. Therefore, she developed the Camino Clutch, a hip, stylish clutch with enough room to carry daily diabetes essentials - insulin pens, needles, syringes, test strips, a glucose meter, insulin pump supplies, etc. - plus the usual glam stuff.

Devoid of the standard medical kit and elastic, the clutch can be carried on its own as a chic purse (for running errands, a lunch date or a night out on the town) or thrown into a larger tote, gym or diaper bag. It also includes a hidden, discreet sharps/disposables container.

Monica got the idea for the Camino Clutch in 2012. It took her about two years to develop it. She did a lot of research and had to teach herself about manufacturing and production from the ground up. "It was an exciting but trying time," she said. "I was trying to figure all of this out while still learning the ins and outs of living in a foreign country."

Monica, who grew up in Blue Bell, is now living in her studio in Copenhagen, Denmark, where she moved to be with her husband, who is Swedish and Danish. They decided to live in Copenhagen because he was just starting his post-doctoral program and is now an assistant professor at the University of Copenhagen.
The name Camino, by the way, is an anagram of Monica. Also, the Spanish translation of Camino is road/path/journey. "It makes perfect sense in relation to life with diabetes," said Monica. "It is a constant journey of trying to figure out the right path to take (to best manage everything) in order to be healthy and happy, stylish and confident...

The first prototype of the Camino Clutch was made in Copenhagen by a local seamstress. She did an excellent job of realizing Monica's sketches, but the price was astronomical. Through the internet, though, the CHC alumna was able to find a U.S. manufacturer who was able to make the bags more economically.

Monica started a Kickstarter campaign on June 12 to help fund production. When we contacted her, the project was 11 percent funded, having brought in $5,936. When backers pledge, their credit card is not charged unless the project is funded 100 percent.

"Stylish women love haute couture," Monica said in an interview last week. "They look adorable in fun sportswear, impressive in stunning suits and surely turn heads in their sexy workout duds. And if you're coping with Type 1, Type 2 or gestational diabetes, the 'look' is even more important for self-image."

Artist's Statement 

Dear Chris Dudley Community:

I know that having diabetes can be overwhelming at times. I really try to stay positive, eat well, exercise, keep my blood sugars in check and remind myself that I am doing the best that I can do.

There have been a few updates since the article was published !    I am currently working on something new-so Casualty Girl or   www.casualtygirl.com is my new site. 

I have moved on from the Camino project (the Camino Clutch is currently sold out  -  for now) and I am currently working on a graphic design series called Typography & Diabetes. It is a series of words and sayings revolving around diabetes. It includes some of my own phrases along with some of the more common, playful phrases that are well known in the diabetes community.

The series is still in the works but several of them are now available as small and large scale, high quality art prints (great for adding a little fun to your gallery wall) and I have recently started applying the designs to products too-mugs, tote bags, notebooks, throw pillows, etc. My goal is to be able to design more and to continue to learn and evolve as an artist-working at a little bit of a slower pace then when I was developing the Camino Clutch. It is important to me that I have the time to focus on my diabetes management too-so I can continue to stay healthy while following my passion.

You can view some of my new works on casualty girl

Thanks you and warm regards, Monica 

Where Are They Now
Hayden Gehr
1. How many years did you attend camp and what was the last year that you attended?  
I have spent a  total of 7 summers at Dudley Camp, and 3 of those were as a camper. My last year as a camper was 2011, and I was a counselor from 2012-2015. 

2. What is your favorite camp memory? 
There are so many to choose from, but my favorite moment has to be the first time I heard the magnificent Herb Brown song. It is an appropriately legendary tribute to an even more legendary man. From then on, that song was always one of the highlights of my year, and I always looked forward to soaking up knowledge from a true basketball genius. Other standout memories include performing an acoustic cover of Lady Gaga's "Poker Face" with Ben Rue, and doing a diabetes-themed rap battle with Ryan Schwab.

3. Did you learn anything at camp to improve your diabetes care?  
I learned the importance of paying attention to your body and addressing a low blood sugar right away. At home, when I'm exercising, I often trick myself into thinking I can run for a few more minutes, or push myself a little further, but that's a mindset that could prove dangerous. At camp, it was always reassuring to see other people at the low table who are taking their health seriously, and I never felt ashamed about taking myself out of a game to test my blood sugar. Being around so many Type 1 Diabetics and hearing their stories always inspired me to be a better diabetic myself. Also, because I have always taken insulin shots, it was beneficial to be around so many people who used pumps, since I could compare their methods to mine and learn more about the various ways to manage diabetes.

4. Do you stay in contact with anyone you met while attending camp?
Yes! Admittedly, I am a pretty poor communicator, but I touch base with a handful of fellow counselors on occasion to talk about life and reminisce about camp. I have met up with friends from camp both in San Francisco and Portland, and it is great to know that no matter what city in the country I visit, chances are there will be a Dudley buddy living there who is more than willing to hang out.

5. Do you have any advice for present or future campers? 
Approach camp as a great chance to polish your basketball skills and play against some great competition, but more so as an opportunity to make lifelong friendships and feel as normal as you probably ever will! Every one of us has felt ostracized or uncomfortable at times because of our disease, but Dudley Camp is the one place where being diabetic is super cool, where you can share a story about waking up with a low blood sugar, stumbling into the kitchen and raiding the refrigerator, and everyone else will be like "I know right!" So my advice would be to take advantage of that chance to connect with others. I never got the chance to play on the upper courts as a camper, so I was always pretty focused on winning games and capturing that elusive Dudley Camp Championship. But when I worked on the upper courts for the first time as a counselor, I realized that I should have just relaxed more and had fun. All of the younger kids were great sports, very supportive of each other, and spent a large portion of games just goofing around and laughing. Sure, they improved as basketball players, but most importantly, they enjoyed each others' company.

*Tell us about yourself since your camper days....did you attend college and where...are you working...are you married...do you have children...anything else you would like to share...
After ending my career as a camper, I attended the University of San Francisco and graduated in 2016. To kick off my post-grad life, I spent 4 months backpacking around Asia before returning to my hometown of Portland. Currently, I am experiencing the difficulty of breaking into the job market and attempting to begin a career in multimedia sports journalism. I hope to teach English abroad and travel much more over the course of the next few years.
Chris Dudley Head shot PT
Happ y Valentine's Day!


Chris Dudley and  
Chris Dudley Foundation