Within days of talking to her, I found myself on the phone with Verizon, downloading StarzPlay on my iPad and becomingly thoroughly addicted to the show.
Now I have a cable bill that rivals my pay from that one account.
I truthfully almost never watch TV. However I do love reading, so I went straight away to the library to check out the original Outlander, a series of novels by Diana Gabaldon.
I’ll be honest with you: I ended up with the mass-produced paperback copy, which had the tiniest print, and could NOT get myself into the book. The books are so well researched, and really just steeped in history. There is plenty of adventure and mayhem, and even a love story, so I forcibly moved on, until I reached the third book in the series, at which point I became so hooked that I went back to re-read the first two (no small feat, since they are about 700 pages long). Eventually, about 4,900 pages later, I made it through the seventh and final book in the series.
Since then I have read the entire series twice. It truly gets better each time.
In my own defense, last year was a long winter and if you remember, over the summer my back went out and I could hardly move, so there was plenty of time to read.
Between the books and the show (which you can also see on Amazon) my family has become very familiar with Outlander, one way or the other.
So the stars of both the book and the movie are Claire and Jaime, perfectly cast in the Starz production and played by Caitriona Balfe and Sam Heughan. When the kids asked me why this was The One TV show I watch, I showed them photos of Sam and Cait on set and also videos of other cast members and funny outtakes from Starz’ YouTube channel.
Of course I expected #1 to swoon over Sam, but instead she screamed “EWWW!!! HE HAS LONG …CURLY… RED…. HAIR! I Just Don’t Know What You See In Him!”
Really? Truly?? Sincerely???
Are you fevered? Do we need to make an appointment with the ophthalmologist? Are you sure you are my daughter?
#2 of course had to join in: “Daddy is SO-O-O-O better looking than Sam”.
UMMMMMMMMM. OK. I mean A1 is hot, but………..
Outlander and Sam managed to become a staple in our home, mostly for the “How Could You” and “Daddy Is” superlatives, which quickly became funny jokes that haven’t stopped.
They once Googled as many red-haired photos of Sam as they could find, printed them out and pasted pictures of A1’s face over them. Not good use of my ink, I can tell you, but damn funny to see A1 with a kilt and sword or a horse or next to Caitriona.
Sam became quite famous for his role as Jaime, and decided to use all that attention for a worthwhile purpose. He created My Peak Challenge, which is a fantastic way to engage his fans, partner with businesses like Bear Strength Clothing, The Box Magazine and John Valbonesi and Fight Camp while also supporting his designated charity, Bloodwise, a UK nonprofit that works to research and eradicate blood cancers like Leukemia and Lymphoma.
You all know how I love a good marketer with a big heart!
Essentially, Peakers challenge themselves to achieve a fitness or lifestyle goal within a set period of time. This year the period is February through May. Peakers can buy tee shirts or a fitness prep program that features Sam and his trainers, and a percentage of each sale is donated to Bloodwise.
A couple of weeks ago, my kids decided they wanted to become Peakers. They are (generally-speaking..sometimes…ok, when prodded) nice kids, with a child’s natural concern and sympathy for others. They decided helping kids with cancer was a great cause. They thought it would be fun to raise money to help. They want to make fairy houses and hold lego-a-thons and donate their hair for wigs. They want to meet Sam and visit Scotland and learn from the Outlander pros how to fight with swords…
So we joined My Peak Challenge.
Our team name is We Stand With Sam.
Not because we love Sam in particular, although of course we do, but more because it TORTURES them to say this and it entertains me ENDLESSLY. You can find us on Facebook.
The kids decided that they want their efforts and funds to help kids here at home instead of in the UK. So we bought the MPC tees and Prep Program, and have made a donation, but plan to raise money for our own designated charity.
Wellness House of Annapolis provides free services and programs to anyone whose lives have been touched by cancer. From support groups for children, teens, and adults to healthy living services such as yoga, reiki, meditation, and therapeutic art classes, the goal of Wellness House is to help anyone suffering from cancer or living with cancer to find the strength and support necessary to focus on recovery and healing.
The kids have some wonderful events in mind and are really looking forward to raising some money and bringing some cheer to Wellness House and to area children.
This page will be a documentary of our My Peak Challenge journey. We will have area experts visit to talk about fitness, health, blood cancers, empathy, food, and much, much more. We are teaming up with trainers, nutritionists, yogis and others to learn how we can meet our challenges, get strong and have fun being fit.
We hope you will visit frequently, post often about your own health, fitness and life challenges, donate to the cause, and use this page as a sounding board for your own community efforts.