Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Date is Set

Hello, friends! Happy Thursday to ya! ;-)

We have rain, rain, and more rain here. Yuck. Seems like we have had a lot of it lately. I'm so happy to have gotten two runs in outside this week! This morning I was back on my ol' friend TM for 5 quick miles.

About 3 miles into my run, my dr's office called and told me they had a surgery date for me if it works for me. So it looks like Wednesday, Dec. 9 will be my bye-bye girlie-parts day! There is really NO time in the next two months to have it done, so I had made up my mind that whatever date they called me with, I was gonna go with. Nevermind the fact that my sister's baby shower (that I am hosting at my house, nonetheless) is on Saturday the 12th! Oh geez. What have I done?? But I have already informed my mom that she may have to prop me up in a chair and do all the work that day. I will only be 3 days post-op. Should.be.interesting. I can picture myself propped up in my lazy chair with sunglasses on, lookin like Bernie cause I am too sore, tired, and all jacked-up on pain meds to care! Goodness. I hope not! I know I won't be running around doing much, but I hope I at least feel like getting out of bed and putting on makeup. Oh you KNOW I will! I would do anything for my sisters. And my nephew, who is to be named Brayden, BTW! Thanks, Jess for letting us in on the little guy's name. As for my other pregnant sister, Layne, we STILL don't know what she and Brett are naming their little bundle of joy...and she is due in like, 3 weeks! Hmmmmm..... I like Eric. I'm just sayin.

So I'm off to enjoy the rest of this rainy day. I have worked on Katie's class' Halloween treat bags today...tomorrow is the big class party day, ya know. And now a load of laundry beckons me from the dryer. It's so chilly and rainy out, I would probably be comfortable just climbing in all the warm, soft, fluffy clothes and hanging out. Crazy, but sounds kinda good right?!

Have a good afternoon, all!

xoxo

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

“Journey”

I finally figured out how to post my video that I played last Thursday night at our ladies night at church.  I hope it works here so y’all can see it.  It captures our journey throughout this past year and Casting Crowns song “Praise You In This Storm” is the perfect fit for what we went through.  God is who He says He is and can do what He says He can do no matter what, no matter where, no matter how. 

xoxo

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Updates!

Happy Tuesday, friends :-D


I hope your Tuesday looks prettier outside than mine. We have rain...again. It seems like we have had a lot of rain lately. It's supposed to be a cool and crisp fall, not a soggy and dreary one! Despite the yucky weather, I headed outside for a great 7-mile run yesterday and it was fantastic. The run, not the weather. I didn't have to run in the rain, but it looked like the clouds could open up at any moment and pour. But, thankfully, I was spared and I really enjoyed myself. Best of all: no leg/foot pain! Hmmmm, tart cherry juice maybe? Yesterday was kind of a test for me because I haven't run outside since my leg joints have been giving me "issues." And throughout the 7 miles, I felt fantastic, and no pain! Yay! But I don't want to push it by running outside too much, so today I was back on the treadmill for 7. It's all good, though, cause like I said, it's really coming down outside today.


I'm going to back up to last Thursday for just a sec because I believe that's where I left y'all hanging. We had our "Faith, Hope, Love, and...Chocolate" ladies' night at our church Thursday night. It went great! I prayed for peace and courage all day long, and the LORD heaped it on my head as I was able to speak about my year-long journey with breast cancer. I pray that God receives all the glory for my words, and my journey. The turnout wasn't quite what I had hoped but it was raining and all yucky outside, and there is quite a larger number of flu cases around. And if there's anything that will keep people away from a public event, it will be the fear of getting the flu. But the night ended with chocolate, so that's always good ;-)


Then on Friday, bright and early, we headed to STL to meet with my new ob/gyn. I guess I can just say gyn, because I don't need the ob part anymore! The appointment went very well, and I L.O.V.E. my new dr! She is easy to talk to, answered our questions, and I felt like she knew where I was coming from, in wanting to have the hysterectomy. After her exam and talking with us, she said she could schedule me for THIS THURSDAY! Yikes! And as ready as I am to get this over with, I told her that I really wanted to wait just a little longer so that I could get through Tyler's basketball season, he only has until next week left. Of course the more I think about it, there is really not going to be any good time to do this before the end of the year; which it needs to be done before then for insurance purposes, obvi. So when she calls with another date, I am going to jump on board and get this done. I am so ready. Other things will just have to wait, if they must.

Our Lending A Hand Fund Kickoff Fundraiser was Saturday night. It took an army to get the event together, but our army showed up and boy was it mighty! The bands were amazing, the fish and all the fixins were great, and we had a lot of positive feedback on our "little fund that could." We ended up raising over $4000!!! Yippee!!! I hope that when January 1 rolls around that we are able to help many many people who have been diagnosed with cancer. Because, that's what it all about, folks.
Have a great rest of your Tuesday, friends!
xoxo

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Geez! A Week?!

Over a week, actually. Sorry :-( I've still been reading your blogs as time has allowed, but it's just been a cah-razy week!

Now that we are in full-fledged basketball season for Tyler, the games and practices have been nonstop. Zachary doesn't have a lot going on right now so we're good there, and Katie really doesn't either, except for the cheer clinic she had last week. My schedule consists of just following the kids around, except for our Bible study on Wednesday nights. And Jack, well, he's strung out between 3 houses right now so he's just a teensy bit busy (heavy sarcasm here).

A few notables of the past week:

  • Katie is reading full sentences now! What a big girl!
  • There's another cheerleader in the house!! Katie went to her first cheer clinic put on last week by our high school squad. She was SO excited and did great! It's crazy, it seems like yesterday that I was teaching little girls in our hs clinic. Geez. She got to perform during one of Tyler's games last week, on the floor and everything. Yes, she is doing cheers in her sleep. I LOVE IT! ;-)
  • Tyler jammed his finger playing ball the other night and insists on practicing and playing through the pain...tough guy! But his ballgame schedule has been nuts! He has two tournaments left, the next two weeks, then he is done until high school ball next fall. Oh my.
  • Zachary organized a "pink day" at school this week. He even took a couple of pink shirts that he had for a couple of boys who didn't have pink shirts. He is the most tender hearted little man I have ever seen. The oneriest, but the sweetest!
  • I am speaking at our ladies' night at church tomorrow night. The theme is "Faith, Hope, Love, and...Chocolate." I get major nerves every time I think about it, but am excited at the same time. I even made a photo video set to music for tomorrow night that I will post as soon as I figure out how! Pray for me!
  • I started taking blood pressure medication last week in hopes that it will take care of my stroke-level white coat syndrome. My bp is crazy high when I go to any dr, even when I have Michelle take it at her clinic. Now my mom can take it at home and it is normal. But, we are trying this to see if we can get it under control continuously. We'll see! I hope so!
  • We are now beginning to see cases of H1N1 pop up in our area. The other school in our county shut down yesterday for the rest of the week, and I believe our school will be next. There were 60+ absent today, which is a good bit considering we are a district of 500 total. We all received our seasonal flu shots a couple weeks ago and our H1N1 shots this week. Hope they help!
  • Our kickoff fundraiser for the Lending A Hand Fund is SATURDAY!! We have two bands set to play, a fish fry, a costume contest for kids, and just an all around good time. I hope there is a good turnout and we raise some big bucks to help others in our community suffering from cancer. Tiffany and I went to PB this morning to talk on the radio about it and it was the coolest thing ever! I only had one "duh-moment" when I forgot my phone number! I looked at Tiff like, "A little help here!!" It was too funny, and quite the experience. Don't think I'd like to make it a career though!

Well, I think you're all caught up. Maybe. I'm sure something has slipped my mind, but I'm not sure what right now! I will try to not let another week go by! *crossing fingers!*

Have a great what's-left-of-your-Wednesday!

xoxo

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Faith & Fitness


In my email inbox this morning I had my daily Scripture verse from Daily Bible Verse. And since I am interested in all things health, nutrition, and fitness, I was absolutely in awe of the words that God sent to me today! Check this out:

"For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the prsent life and the life to come." 1 Timothy 4:8


Perfect, right?! Of course it is. What an absolutely perfect verse to remind us that while physical fitness is of course important, we sometimes make the mistake of thinking that it will make us a better, happier person. When the truth is, that giving ourselves to God and His perfect will for our lives is the only way we can change from the inside out. Physical training is of some value, but godliness has value in ALL things.

Have a terrific Tuesday, lovelies!

xoxo

Monday, October 12, 2009

Guest Post In Honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Brest cancer Pictures, Images and Photos


I am so honored to have been asked by my friend, Lindsey, to do a guest post for her over at Sound Eats in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month. Thank you, Linds for the opportunity to share with your fabulous readers. Love you, girl! <3

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Some Tart Cherry Juice a Day Keeps...The Joint Pain Away?

Happy Sunday evening friends;-)


I hope everyone has had a wonderful Sunday! Our day was beautiful and perfect. I got up a little too late for an all-at-once long run so I did 6.5 miles before church, then we went to eat at our fave Mexican place for lunch, and then came home and did 5.5 miles. 12 miles today! WooHoo! AND I was able to run them with no leg/joint pain!! I'll be honest, I've been having to take ibuprofen occasionally to be able to run because of the joint pain as a side effect of the Femara that I'm taking. But the last few days it has been minimal. Deserves another WooHoo!!


Could it be because of this?




A couple weeks ago, my mom told me about an article she read in Parade Magazine (you know, the one that comes folded up in most Sunday newspapers). Here's the article.

Since I've been having the joint pain when I run I thought I would give it a shot. No harm, right? It's just juice. I've been mixing 2 tbsp of this concentrate with ice water (although Jack says is good with tea) twice a day. And get this: my joint pain has been less and less. Interesting, no? ;-) Maybe there is something to this!

I thought it would be a difficult thing to find so I ordered two bottles of it from some website, and I'll be darn if I didn't see it at Walmart last week. Sheesh, Walmart really DOES have everything! LOL But I'm just going to keep drinking it, and I even got my in-laws started drinking it to try and help with arthritis pain. We'll see....

Have a relaxing Sunday evening, friends. Rest up because a fresh week starts tomorrow! We have 3 ballgames, Katie's mini-cheer camp, Bible study, and birthday parties. Let's go week!!

xoxo

Friday, October 9, 2009

RaNdOm

A little bit of Friday randomness for ya! Tina did this over at Carrots 'N' Cake today and I thought it looked fun. Fun? Well I guess a little, but I was bored! LOL

You're supposed to answer the questions with 1-word answers. It was interesting. But it was kinda hard because I found myself wanting to use whole phrases and certainly more than one word! But anyway, it was fun for what it was!

1. Where is your cell phone? Here

2. Your hair? Growing

3. Your mother? Stylin'

4. Your father? Dependable

5. Your favorite food? Mexican

6. Your dream last night? Nothing

7. Your favorite drink? Fuze

8. Your dream/goal? Help

9. What room are you in? Living

10. Your hobby? Scrapbooking

11. Your fear? Snakes

12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Here

13. Where were you last night? Alton

14. Something you aren’t? Short

15. Muffins? Blueberry

16. Wish list item? Forerunner

17. Where did you grow up? Missouri

18. Last thing you did? Snacked

19. What are you wearing? Pink

20. Your TV? BIG

21. Your pets? None

22. Your friends? Amazing

23. Your life? Perfect

24. Your mood? Content

25. Missing someone? Sisters

26. Vehicle? Suburban

27. Something you’re not wearing? Hoodie

28. Your favorite store? Maurices

29. Your favorite color? Purple

30. When was the last time you laughed? Today

31. Last time you cried? Awhile

32. Your best friend? Many

33. One place that I go over and over? School

34. One person who emails me regularly? LeAnn

35. Favorite place to eat? Tio's

I'm so glad it's Friday, I had to d.r.a.g my booty out of bed this morning. I am usually not slow to rise but I think the combination of the rain and the cold temps in the bedroom made me want to hibernate under the covers for just a bit longer. But after laying in bed and watching the news for 30 mins, I finally drug myself out of bed at 6am and started my day. I am definitely a morning person. I LOVE LOVE LOVE getting up before everybody else and pouring a hot cup of coffee and sitting down with my Bible to have some quiet time before the day gets crazy. I remember Beth Moore saying during a Bible study one time that it didn't matter if you're kids got up at the crack of dawn, you ought to consider getting up earlier than they do so that you can pray for the strength and guidance to get through the day with them! AMEN! Hehe;-)

I hope y'all have a fun weekend planned! Have a great one!

xoxo

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Lending A Hand

Hello friends! Happy Tuesday!



We have picked up where last week left off, in terms of busy-ness! Basketball games, fundraiser work, and household errands all abound this week. And my mom says it will only get worse as the kids get older...whoa boy! It's all good though. If there's one thing this last year has taught me, it's the appreciation of ALL times...busy and unbusy. There's nothing like a good ol' NORMAL busy week! Love it.


The basketball game schedule is a little easier this week because we only have 2 versus 4 like we had last week. Tyler played last night (and lost) and plays again on Thursday. Both games are away.



On Saturday afternoon, Tiffany and I spent 3 hours sorting through our Lending A Hand Fund tshirts. We had 300 shirts to sort into all the many different orders. It was quite the chore for these two "chemo brain girls" to list and sort and label! I'm not so sure it was smart for the two of us to tackle this job! Haha, but we managed to get it done somehow and with minimal mistakes!
So yesterday (Monday) was busy making tshirt deliveries all over town and putting shirts in the mail. A friend of ours and current Miss Missouri International, Emily, is donating her time and hard work into putting together a Spooktacular Costume Contest as part of our kickoff fundraiser on October 24. Tiffany and I are so thankful for her help and Emily also receives credit for her title for working with a nonprofit charitable organization. So it's a win-win! Here is us with Emily yesterday. I told her mom to shoot from the waist up because I was the only one in slouchy windpants and Em and Tiff were in cutesy jeans. I didn't want to be the only one lookin' like I was bummin'!
We also got the kids their flu shots today, which was an interesting after school activity! Even with the numbing cream that I used on Katie's arm she still about had a complete runaway. It worked so well last time...but no so much this time. Oh well. So after a busy day, this Mama wanted to come home and take a nap but it was not in the cards. I cooked dinner and comfort food topped the menu. Good ol' mac n cheese did the trick! It.was.divine. OMGosh, love love love me some mac n cheese. It has been my fave since childhood. Guess that's why it's like the ultimate comfort food for me!

See y'all later on! I'm going to chill out with the fam and watch The Biggest Loser. I love this show! Does anyone else sob when they see Abby?! When they show pics of her family and talk about her, I just lose it! Bless her sweet heart. There are no words.

Have a great evening! xoxo

Friday, October 2, 2009

The Last Hurrah

Well, I don’t know if you can cancer treatment a hurrah, exactly, but when you get to the last day I think it’s certainly fitting!

October 09 039 - CopyTreatment went great today. My very fave nurse ever, Renee, was there with big congratulations hugs and tons of good vibes! I also painted my “Survivor Tile” today that will be hung somewhere around Siteman soon. There are walls of murals of these tiles all around the Center for Advanced Medicine. Each one represents a cancer journey and today I got to paint mine. I chose the verse that has guided me throughout treatment, Mark 5:36, a pink breast cancer ribbon, and my new title of “Survivor.” I had fun painting it. I’ve had a long time to think about what I was going to put on it. October 09 037October 09 041 October 09 043

Jack and I “cheesin” it up for the camera, passing the time! He is so stinkin’ cute!! Yeah, that’s MY man! Hehe;-)October 09 047

OK, here’s where it gets a little ridiculous. We were getting a little bored!October 09 057October 09 058 October 09 046October 09 048 October 09 050October 09 053

But in the end, I got my certificate and a t-shirt, too! October 09 056October 09 055

And then we went to celebrate! Landry’s Seafood House for a late lunch, which of course included the best chocolate cake you can imagine…October 09 059 October 09 060October 09 061

And then we came home and had a celebratory toast with our kids! No worries, it was sparkling strawberry juice ;-)

October 09 063October 09 062

It was a wonderful day. It feels very surreal that I am actually done. I don’t know how to feel about the fact that I don’t have to go back in 3 weeks!

But I am so grateful to God for leading me through the past year. It has been quite the journey that we’ve had, me and Him. I feel like today I’ve lifted my head out of the folds of His robe and begun to look around for the first time in a year. The storm has passed and the clouds are rolling away. But I can tell you one thing for sure, I won’t be going very far. Me and God, we are tight. Inseparable. And I plan on spending the rest of my life glorifying Him and praising Him for my second chance at life.

Right now it’s on to some rest! I’m going to get Katie a snack and get ready for bed. See y’all soon! Love ya!!

xoxo

I MADE IT!

So here I am.  October 2, 2009.  The day of my last Herceptin treatment!  I remember sitting in the dr’s office last October and getting out my calendar and counting out 17x every 3 weeks and circling October 2, 2009 on my calendar.  I was aware, and afraid, that things could get off schedule at any point due to illnesses, low blood counts, or whathaveyou.  But by the grace of God I was able to stay right on track from Day 1.  Speaking of Day 1:

chemo1chemo2chemo3 chemo4 chemo5IMG00398chemo6   I was going to number the chemo treatment pics, but me holding up the fingers on my hand, kinda speaks for itself.  Ha! 

Through the grace of God, I’ve come a long way.  He is such an AWESOME GOD!!  Thank you, LORD, for the strength and peace that you heap on my head every.single.day.

Thank you, friends, for all your thoughts and prayers throughout the last year.  For sticking with me and never failing to give me such kind and encouraging words.  I love you ALL!

PRAISE GOD, I AM A SURVIVOR!!!

“Don’t be afraid, just believe.  Mark 5:36”

xoxo

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Awareness

Today is the 1st of October and marks the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness Month!


PINK surrounds us! (This is a good thing!)


I have been looking forward to October and BCA Month because I feel very supported and encouraged by all the publicity that breast cancer receives. It is SO researched and SO in the public eye...it's hard to miss the pink yogurt lids and the pink ribbon on everything from Cheerios to contact solution. And I LOVE it! It makes me feel very powerful and PROUD that I am a SURVIVOR!! Praise God!


Tonight in STL, they are lighting the Gateway Arch pink in honor of BCAM! VERY cool! From 7pm - midnight the arch will be pink! I wanted to see it in person so much, and with the last treatment tomorrow it would have been perfect except for the fact that Tyler has a ballgame tonight. And I'm NOT leaving for STL at 8pm! Oh well. I am enjoying this ball season so much because last year I didn't get to see many games due to my surgery and then starting chemo...so I am enjoying every moment this season! GO BULLDOGS!


So friends, be aware of your TATAS this month! If you are 40 and older, you should be having a mammogram every year. If you have a family history of breast cancer, I believe the guidelines are to start having mammos 10 years prior to your family member's diagnosis. So if your mom, aunt, nana, sister, was diagnosed at age 45, you should start having mammos at 35. My sisters, who are 26, need to start regular mammos now. Here me, girls?! And regardless of your age, do your breast self exams every month. Nobody knows your breasts better than YOU (well, maybe your significant other!). Regardless, be aware. Breast cancer caught early is so treatable and mostly curable.


In closing...I read MizFit's blog this morning and she had breast cancer survivor, Jacki Donaldson, as her guest poster. PLEASE read her post, it is perfect and powerful and is totally ME.


Bring a little awareness to someone's day today! Have a great day, friends! xoxo