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  1. #1
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    Welcome to one dad's journey....

    Hello All--

    Ok, so many of you know my story about losing my 4-year-old daughter to croup. It sucked then, and it still sux now. Granted, the pain isn't as great, or is it that my body has become used to the waves of emotion of such a loss. Either way, with the help of family, friends, sponsors, and RM, I have been moving forward.

    This is to show appreciation to my sponsors, which I will list when I get a bit more time, and to give you a bit more insight into what goes on while I ride in Alaina's honor. Please keep an open mind, like I do for signs from Alaina, and yes, I'll share a few with you. They may sound dorky, yet they are what I see.

    So--- Welcome to my "new normal"........

    Shawn
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

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  3. #2
    Why don't you have a seat over there? moff_quigley's Avatar
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    Awesome RM.

    Shawn,



    Travis
    Ask your doctor if getting off your butt is right for you.

  4. #3
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    So, as I always tried to teach Alaina random acts of kindness, today I was cleaning out the garage a bit, and found 5 pairs of mtb tires I was no longer using or will use. Knowing that the juvenile detention center refurbishes bikes for less-fortunate kids for x-mas, I took them out to them to use. Left with a good feeling.......
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  5. #4
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    So now it's time to thank......

    Those that have supported me to this date. First, of course, is my wife and family. Granted, wifey tells me she's over the whole riding thing, yet it's what gets me through. Hey, if it doesn't hurt anyone, why stop???

    Sponsors. As you know, without them, it would be quite a bit more difficult to keep the riding going. At first, I would contact companies about my Make-A-Wish fund raiser I held out in Virginia City, Nevada, for 4 years, then Gardnerville, Nevada, for a year. Seemed like they couldn't help fast enough. Guess it had to do with my "send your close-outs/seconds/blems/what-have-you, I'll use it to get you name out" approach. Then my stepson decided he wanted to ride, so to approach for support for him. Maybe it was because I said "THANK YOU" all the time? Finally, to hit home with losing Alaina. Sure, some companies said "no", and that's fine. Now, I do have a core group that has been with me since. And they are (drum roll, please)---

    Big Daddy's Bikes of Gardnerville
    ClifBar
    Crank Bros.
    Fox Racing Shox
    Gary Fisher Bikes
    Hayes
    LH Thomson
    No Tubes
    Race Face
    Ridemonkey.com
    Ritchey
    SixSixOne
    Voler Wear
    V.S.I.
    W.T.B.

    To me, it's amazing, and humbling, when companies such as these look beyond, way beyond, podium finishes, and really look at the rider. As I tell them in my email updates, I can truly never say "THANK YOU" enough for their support......
    Last edited by mantispf2000; 10-17-2009 at 09:17 PM.
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  6. #5
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    Another site I like to post on, and mainly because I'm involved with a bunch of my Compassionate Friends gang, is facebook.com. I have a new page there as well, under Team Alaina Sage (duh, how original). Maybe it's because I'm still trying to work on the right sizing for my pics to post here, or maybe because including my family/friends is a bit easier. Either way, come on over and see what's posted pic-wise......
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  7. #6
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    2010 schedule...

    So tentatively, for 2010, my plans are to attend Sea Otter in April, Downieville in July, the Northstar Thursday Night MTB XC Series July-August, and Mammoth. I'd also like to try for an endurance event, maybe Kirkwood or Cool, CA, or even Arizona. Just depends on the work schedule and $$$'s. If you're at any of these events, I won't be hard to find. Just look for some guy wearing either a "Team Alaina Sage" t-shirt, or a jersey with "Daddy's P.I." of the front and "I'm Alaina's Daddy" on the back. I sure would like to put some faces to names from RM......
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  8. #7
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    Great ride today....

    Granted, it was using the trails/service roads behind the schools here in the 'hood, but it was the course used for my last Make-A-Wish event. I did change a bit in the middle, which added to the fun factor. Makes me wonder--- if I put the whole course together, what kind of fun/turn-out would there be for a short xc race, or a longer 12-24 hour event? Sure would like to find out some day.............
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  9. #8
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    Some of the other angels I ride with/for....

    Most of you know I ride in my daughter, Alaina's, memory. Well, she has a few friends that come along for the ride, flying next to me and keeping me safe. They are--

    Bryce (D)-16, Brian (R)- 31, Savhannah/Donnie/Britt (L)- 6mos/21/33, David (RP)- 20, Clarissa (A)- 22, John (P)- 17, Colby (C)- 21, Cody (C)- , Faron (F)- 5, Mariah (S)- 21, John (S)- 37, Clint (S)- 21, Kylie (M)- 2wk preemie, Beth (S)- 16, Rhiannon (D)- 21, Brandon (M)- 17, Jessica and Gregory (F)- 23 and 14wks, Susie (M)- 44, Jessie (S)- 22, Ryan (I)- 22, Joe (G)- 18, Pippin (A)- 11, Melinda Rose (J)- 28, Chris (S)- 22, Ryan (E)- 27, Rachael (R)- 20, Sabine (S)- 3mos, Sydney (W)- 19, Steve (M)- 32, Gregory (C)- 24, Mitchell (L)- 29, Ben (P)- 27
    Last edited by mantispf2000; 10-31-2009 at 11:09 AM.
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  10. #9
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    A movie and a ride.....

    Dang that Michael Jackson guy. Wife wanted to see his flick, This Is It, so I caved, well, wanted to go, too. In the middle, he does his "Earth" song, and it starts with a little girl running and playing in the forest. At one point, she catches a butterfly with her finger. Towards the end, she's desperately trying to save a seedling from the bulldozer. Reminds me of teaching Alaina random acts of kindness.

    Another fun ride-- I put together a loop behind the local elementary schools, part of which was used for my Make-A-Wish event, adding a bit more climbing/downhill and adding some in the middle, and it was a blast!! About 10 miles of rocky/sandy/grinning work.
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  11. #10
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    A visit and a find.....

    Was out visiting Alaina before work, and as I was leaving, noticed a beads/bell hanging on one of the trees. Went back to look at it, and it's one of the local Ring In Kindness Bells. Card on it said to take it, so yes, I did, called them to see about volunteering, and may help make a few with them. Thank you, Alaina, you still help make daddy's day.........
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  12. #11
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    Alaina's wild horses....

    There's this herd of wild horses, about 7-10 depending on new babies, that visit Alaina from time to time. Lately, I haven't been able to see them, until just recently. I found the wild horses, and they're about a mile from Alaina, on someone's section of land, all together in a paddock. They looked so sad, though, no grass, just dirt, and I really felt for them. When I got home, I left a message with the BLM, and I'm going to see what it would take to "buy" them and set them free again.....
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  13. #12
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    Wild horse update.....

    Spoke with the BLM, and was told that yes, the horses were caught, and they have been adopted as a group minus 1 (1 adopted just down the road). Now, to see if I can contact the adopter, give my Alaina-visit story, and see if I might be able to help out to be close to them. We'll see.........
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  14. #13
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    Um, er, pics posted....

    Ok, this is not meant to in absolutely no negative bad feeling way ticked off the powers that be here on the RM. I appreciate the ability to post about my riding for Alaina, and don't want to become black-balled for the future.

    That being said, I've had hiccups downloading pics here for you fine folks to see. Therefore, I've been downloading them to my facebook page, Team Alaina Sage (gee, how ironic it's the same name as here, eh?), and just put about 25 new ones up for your viewing.

    Oh, and had another good ride out to visit Alaina today. Man, I'm going to have to stud some tires soon, as we're supposed to get snow in the somewhat-near future......
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

  15. #14
    anti-dentite drkenan's Avatar
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    Awesome! If the horses were together in the wild, they definitely deserve to be in captivity. That sucks that the BLM decided to "catch" them in the first place.
    Better lives have been lived in the margins, locked in the prisons and lost on the gallows than have ever been enshrined in palaces.

  16. #15
    Turbo Monkey mantispf2000's Avatar
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    Signs from Alaina.....

    Ok, so this is a chick flick, however, I've noticed we get a decent amount of signs from Alaina, just showing that as long as we keep our heart/mind/eyes open, there's no telling where she'll show up.

    Got My Sister's Keeper last night, and saw 5, yes 5, signs from Alaina. They are/were--

    1-- During the preview of Time Traveler's Wife, at the end, the guy says "I can't stay here long (or something to that manner)", and his wife says "I know", then the screen goes right to Alaina's bday (August 14).

    2-- At a hospital scene, the family talks with Dr. Farquad. Let's see, what other movie has a Farquad in it? Why yes, Shrek, one of Alaina's favorites.

    3-- Dad works for the fire department. Alaina wanted to be a firefighter.

    4-- Judge's chambers is #614. My grandparents'/now uncle's address is/was 614. Maybe granddad was saying hello as well?

    5-- A memoir book by the daughter shows a hand print. Alaina and I would trace mine and her hands on her bday.

    Co-ink-ee-dink?? Maybe, although I'll think otherwise......
    Better a participant than a spectator, and always riding with my daughter, Alaina, in her seat.

    It's not the effort, it's the smile.

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