Author Archives: Bill and Paige

About Bill and Paige

Years ago we were bitten by the Wanderlust bug and the result was a serious case of “we gotta get out of here” syndrome. Pressed for time to see the world – we want to live it, breathe it, feel it and give back! So… we’re on the move!

Final Days – Photo Sale to Help Raise Funds for Alex’s Lemonade Stand

Photography sale to kick off my partnership with Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation.

30% discount on photos and keepsakes for the rest of February.  Please head on over to www.paigeshaw.com and use the code ALSF upon checkout.  Make a purchase and help cure childhood cancer at the same time.

If you wish to donate and not make a buy there is also a donation tab on the front page of the website.

Save the date. Stop by our Alex’s Lemonade Stand in Marion Square – Charleston, South Carolina – June 8th. Late morning until early evening.

Let’s raise enough money to fund a month of research.

  • $50 = 1 hour of research
  • $400 = 1 day of research
  • $2,000 = 1 week of research
  • $8,000 = 1 month of research

The mission of Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation is to change the lives of children with cancer through funding impactful research, raising awareness, supporting families, and empowering everyone to help cure childhood cancer.

Update and Exciting Information

After walking the Via Francigena Bill and I took a 14 day transatlantic cruise from Civitavecchia (near Rome) to Miami, Florida.

The goal was to recover (have a birthday party) and decompress.  Which we did in spades. But the change was abrupt, the cruise ship became our prison, and the port of Miami looked real good.

Bing Crosby got it right when he sang: Oh, give me land, lots of land under starry skies above –
Don’t fence me in.

We celebrated Thanksgiving in Charleston, SC and got in as much grand-baby time as possible (is it ever enough?), then headed to Indian Wells (near Palm Springs, CA) for a tepid Christmas and a warmer winter.

So here we are. Palm trees, colorful flowers, bougainvillea and snow-capped mountains paint the horizon. Golf courses are pristine – green from edge to edge.  We’re trying to make the best of a rough situation!

Now the exciting news.

Most of you know I’ve turned my passion for photography into a business. As we travel the world, Bill carries my camera equipment and I take photos.  Those are showcased and sold at www.paigeshaw.com.

I have worked on this for some time and am now thrilled to announce that I have decided to partner with Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation and donate to them all of my photography proceeds.

The stars aligned when I read about Alex’s Lemonade Stand.  I was looking for a grass-roots  charity with a national/global reach and one that has personal resonance.

Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation mission is to change the lives of children with cancer through funding impactful research, raising awareness, supporting families, and empowering everyone to help cure childhood cancer. 

My eldest son Preston was diagnosed with the same cancer as Alex when he was 9 months old and then with a different cancer when he was 11. Preston’s oncologist is part of ALSF’s Crazy 8 Initiative where 90 scientists and researchers are getting together to help find a cure for hard to treat cancers. Today Preston is 35 years old, married and dad to 2 dogs and 3 cats.

To kick off my partnership with ALSF and Valentine’s day I am offering a 30% discount on photos for the rest of February.  Please head on over to www.paigeshaw.com and use the code ALSF upon checkout.  You can get a beautiful photo and help cure childhood cancer at the same time.

If you’re in Charleston, South Carolina on June 8th – stop by our Lemonade Stand in Marion Square. Details to come…

Please spread the word.

Life Happens While Making Plans

The Via Francigena pilgrimage had been in the works for almost two years – August 28th to November 19th – generous time to walk, explore and then return by means of a transatlantic cruise.In April of this year we learned our son and daughter-in-law were going to have a baby – the due date coincided with our walk.

Plane and cruise tickets had already been purchased and commitments to our pilgrim partners had been made. We decided to continue and make a plan when the time came.

Graciella was born October 8th.

Rome was five days out and the proud parents wanted some alone time. This allowed time to finish the Via, rest a couple days and fly home for some Gracie time.Oh, to hold a grandbaby. What a miracle.

It was only 36 hours after arriving in Charleston that Bill and I looked at each other said let’s fly back to Italy and get on that ship. The boat sails in 14 days…

The cruise took off from Civitavecchia, an hour outside Rome. We stayed near the airport and meandered our way to the port.First stop, Barcelona. We have great memories of our time here. I was particularly looking forward to seeing the progress of the Sagrada Familia. A Gaudí designed church. It’s a fantastical whimsical fortification – part adult hallucination part child’s mind. Within a year of the corner stone being set in 1882 Gaudí became the architect. He abandoned the original Neo-gothic theme for his own modernistic style. Rumor has it that the goal is to finish in 2026. This – Gaudí’s last project.

On the opposite end of the spectrum both in time and in design we toured his first commission, Casa Vicens. The juxtaposition from the start of his career to the end is a lesson in the creative mind.

The ship was scheduled to arrive in Funchal (an island just west of Portugal) in two days. However, a northerly storm with twenty foot swells put an end to that and we remain another day in Barcelona.

Tomorrow we head west, out into the Atlantic, where we will sail seven days to St. Maarten.

A Roman Recovery

Today was our last full day in Italy.

After spending the day in bed yesterday we took the time to revisit (our first time was 12 years ago) the Coliseum, Forum and surrounding areas.We managed to accumulate ten miles on these weary bodies of ours. My heels are not happy.Room service, bed and Charleston by tomorrow night.

The Day After Finishing the Via Francigena

Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened. ~ Dr. Seuss

Today we went the office of the “Opera Romana Pellegrinaggi” in St. Peter’s Square for our Testimoniums (certificate for completing at least the last 100km of the Via). The pilgrims who started Canterbury get the same document.It’s just like the Camino de Santiago. Walking the last 100km (62 miles) gets you a Compostela.Chappy, Bill and I weighed ourselves. Bill was the winner at losing the most.Bill and I hoofed it to our new luxurious hotel where we will veg for the next three nights. Soft sheets, a bathtub and a huge TV with English channels. Not sure if we’ll get out of bed tomorrow. Chappy, Darrell and Roxanne stopped by to check out our new digs and we all walked to see the Trevi Fountain (along with 1,000,000 other people) to hug it out and say goodbye.Chappy is heading home tomorrow and Darrell and Roxanne are off to discover Italy by train.

Roxanne’s post and photos:

Completing our pilgrimage to Rome and receiving our Via Francigena Testamonium today means farewell to the Fab Five and hello to the positive memories we’ll share with each other back home in Nevada. Thanks Paige for sharing your blog with our loved ones! Luxury is clean cloths!Well done Pilgrims!

Day 39 the Final Day on the Via Francigena

La Storta to Rome – Sunday October 14th (Preston’s birthday – love you honey) – 13.3 miles in 7 hours 14 minutes.

The Fab Five made to Rome all in one piece and blister free.

What an experience! We’re so appreciative of our health, the ability to perform such a task and friendship.

Our walk today was…. well… you decide…. (photos are in order).Obstacles to climb over…95% was on pavement.We’re staying at the Vatican Garden Inn. Don’t stay here!

Roxanne’s post and photos:

The Fab Five have landed!
St. Peter’s Square, Rome.

Day 38 on the Via Francigena

Campagnano to La Storta – Saturday October 13th – 14.4 miles in 6 hours 45 minutes – climbing 1443 feet.

You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own (and with friends). And you know what you know. And you are the one who decided where to go (Rome). Dr. Seuss

It feels so good knowing that the Fab Five will be walking into Rome tomorrow. We’re smelling the barn. I think we’d gallop if we had the energy!

Hotel Cassia is where we will rest our heads tonight. Twin beds in a private room. Clean.

It isn’t the mountain ahead that wears you out; it’s the grain of sand in your shoe. Robert W. Service

Roxanne’s post and photos:

Ladies and gentlemen, The Fab Five are now on final approach into Rome. Walked from Campagnano di Roma to La Storta. This last stage before Rome took us through pastureland, shady woodlands, 6th century BC Etruscan burial sites, a waterfall and an ancient water mill. Gluten free eating is easy in Italy!
There’s an APP called AIC (Italian Celiac Association) that shows where Gluten free meals and products are sold and those options are everywhere in Italy even in tiny villages.