Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Workout Fillers

What I should be doing right now:  laundry, cleaning bathrooms, and getting more Christmas decorations out of storage.

What I AM doing right now: trying to peel off acrylic fingernails and reading blogs.  Oh come on, don’t pretend you don’t do that too. Winking smile  I’ll get to the other stuff, eventually.

What I am NOT doing right now: RUNNING.  It’s officially been 14 days, 2 hours, and 12 13 minutes since I’ve last ran a step.  I’m hanging in there pretty good, but I’ll admit that I have wanted to throw all doctor’s orders out the window on more than one occasion (Sorry, Tim).  But I have managed to hold off for two whole weeks.  Every time I start to whine about it I just say to myself, “But it’s not cancer!!”  And that makes me smile…and go back to my other workouts of choice.

Which, by the way, have been pretty good fillers!  I read about Extreme Burn on Clare’s blog the other day, and since I was looking for another DVD-type workout to add to my rotation, I bought it and downloaded it.


The verdict?

I really like it!  Well, I like it less as I’m getting my rear handed to me after a little while, but it’s a really great workout!  I’m really glad I bought it. 

So between the new Extreme Burn DVD, my Jeanette Jenkins’ Cardio Kickboxing DVD, JJ Cardio Sculpt, and another 30 minute cardio-blast download, I have a pretty good rotation going on right now.  It’s not running but it’ll do. Smile  I’m sweating my butt off during every one of these workouts so they are doing the trick I’d say.  That, and the fact that my family hasn’t disowned me (yet) are good signs of a good workout for me.


I’m going to go figure out what’s for dinner on this game day – GO BULLDOGS! – and maybe tackle some of that laundry.  Maybe.Winking smile


Later, guys.


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Kickin’ It Off Right

What a fabulous time we had last night kicking off the regular season for


Basketball season in Van Buren has always been a pretty big deal.  And that’s putting it mildly.  We are a little Ozark town, nestled in the hills, that LOVE our Bulldogs.  Especially basketball.  Being a summertime tourist town, we have always said that “there’s nothing else to do here in the winter except play basketball.”  And there’s a lot of truth to that.  And this has led to a legacy of Bulldog pride, fun rivalries, and passionate fans.

And boy did we have all three present last night!

This year’s regular season kicked off with the annual Yellow Sucker Game, a game rich in tradition here in Carter County between the two schools in the county, Van Buren and Ellsinore.  The “county basketball championship” so to speak, features a traveling plaque adorned with the aforementioned fish and representing all the glory of the county title.

It is always one of the biggest and most fun games of the year, with packed gymnasiums full of passionate fans.  [And yes, I’m a little scared to know that there is a camera on me at a basketball game.  Yikes!]

Umm, yeah.  I don’t know really what to say…so I’ll just incriminate myself further…



And yes, I about died when I saw these pictures this morning.  I thought, “OMGosh.  We are THOSE parents.”  Luckily our kids laughed right along with us and didn’t slink away in total humiliation. 

But when your KID is on the floor, and especially LAST night when he’s having such a bang-out game, it’s SO HARD to sit still!!!  My right leg was actually sore last night from jumping up and down on it all evening!

Have I ever mentioned that #40 is my favorite number? 


For good reasonWinking smile  [circa 1994]



And have I mentioned that my kid has skills?!

He dribbles…




He shoots…





He scores… [ahem, 32 points last nightWinking smile]IMG_0730


And whether or not we win, he makes us very proud. Smile 



Yes, even with a Nike symbol and his number shaved into the sides of his head (and colored with black eyeliner so you could see it in his white-blond hair).Smile with tongue out BTW- can we be compensated for using his head as a billboard??



AND with the Varsity victory, the FiSH stays with Van Buren for the 8th straight year!



Way to go, Bulldogs!


Cheer loudly, smile big, and enjoy every moment, friends.


Friday, December 2, 2011

What A Month! Welcome December!

Wow.  What a month November was!  And it’s one I don’t care to repeat again, thankyouverymuch.

There were high points in the month like Thanksgiving, Katie’s 8th birthday, and the start of the high school Bulldog basketball season, but the “c” word lingered over everything.  At least it did to me.

It was filled with stress and anxiety as I have been going for many scans, my sister had a scare which turned out to be fine, and my brother-in-law (her husband) also had an issue that had to be checked out, which was also fine.

But, Praise The Lord, OUR fears were finally put to rest this Wednesday when the MRI of my right femur showed only a stress injury from running, and NO CANCER.  That’s right, NO CANCER.  Those two words together are so, so sweet.

And a running injury??  Imagine that.  I don’t even care.  I hugged my dr as he was telling me that I would have to take 4-6 weeks off from running, telling him “I wouldn’t care if I never ran another step if I never had to worry about cancer ever again.

Of course we all know that’s not how it works unfortunately.  Cancer, and the anxiety it causes, will be with me the rest of my life.  Hopefully a long, long, long life; and hopefully less and less anxiety as it goes on.  Hopefully long enough to see all my children graduate high school, college, and get married.  Long enough to see them give me grandchildren and to play with those grandchildren and spoil them to pieces.  Long enough to celebrate dozens of years of marriage to my still-high-school-sweetheart and the love of my life. 

Whatever God has planned for me, I know that it’s “to prosper me, not to harm me; plans to give me hope and a future” (Jer. 29:11).  And I won’t fear the unknown because I know that He’s already there.  All I can do is to try and live a life that is pleasing to Him and to live each day to it’s fullest…cherishing every second and not taking anything for granted.  <-----And that’s not a bad lesson for ALL of us!

So, as we start a new month, let’s all try to focus on the things that really matter and to take the time to savor every moment.  I know we will. Red heart








Smile LOTS today, cherish every second, and check your breasts, ladies!!


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Long Time No Post

“But thanks be to God!  He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 15:57

Hey guys Be right back

I’m not even going to look to see how long it was since my last post, I know it’s ridiculous.  And I know I say this again and again, but I seriously have had no.spare.time. in which to blog.  I still don’t, but it’s 615am and nobody else is up around here, just me and God.  We are just waiting for another 45 minutes to roll around when this house will undoubtedly spring to life with people, little and big, getting ready to start another day.

By the way, have I mentioned how thankful I am to have “another day”?

Well, I am.


For the past 4 weeks we have made countless trips to STL for all sorts of different scans, which first started out trying to determine WHY I have two broken ribs. BTW-we still don’t know. Humph.

  • X-ray of ribs to diagnose 2 broken ribs (9 & 10 if you’re wondering)
  • Bone density which would give us a clear reason as to the broken ribs-it was normal
  • CT scan to determine if cancer is lurking anywhere else-it’s not PTL!
  • Bone scan to round out the scanning regimen-wuh oh. <----hot spot on the ribs, left ankle, and femur
  • X-ray of the femur to determine the cause of the uptake shown in the bone scan, looking for a lesion, tumor, fracture, SOMETHING.

So this brings us to the present, where I heard from my dr last night that the bone expert doesn’t THINK the spot on my femur is cancer, but now we have to do an MRI to be certain. 

So you can mentally just add that to the list above. Winking smile

I am mentally and emotionally exhausted.  I have had so many emotions running through me in the past month, it’s almost like the time of my original diagnosis all over again…sad, frustration, toughness, anger, it’s been pretty much the norm as far as the cycle of emotions goes.

Over and over I keep handing all my fears to God, and over and over I have failed and have picked them back up and tried to take control in my human hands.  And I’ve figured out, yet again, that umm, this doesn’t work so well.  Mentally and emotionally exhausted-yeah, are not characteristics of a child of God.  We are supposed to hand our worries over to Him and let.Him.work.

Have faith.

Don’t pick them back up again.



Well, I’m trying.  And I’ll keep trying.  I know that while I have so many unknowns, there are no unknowns with God.  He is not startled by anything and He really does have all this under control!  No matter how much I like to think I am…I’m totally not.  Boy that’s tough for a Type-A control-freak to say!



I am so thankful that I serve a Risen Savior who loves me, no matter how many times I fail.  That I can ask Him for forgiveness and He continues to pick me up, dust me off, and put me back up on His shelf where I belong.  SO THANKFUL.  <-----Kinda appropriate for the day before Thanksgiving, right?

So again this morning, I am giving it all over to Him.  Again, I’m going to fix my mindset on

“Erica, He’s got THIS.”

And be SO THANKFUL that He does.

Find something to be thankful for today, smile with hope, and check your breasts.

Love y’all!


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Yeah Cancer, YOU Heard Me…




Yesterday was the 1st Annual Tell Cancer To Take A Hike at Van Buren School.  It was the idea of a very good friend of mine (and a fellow survivor), Sue, to raise money for cancer by having kids pay to sign up for a hike.  And we live in one of the MOST amazing hike-able places, ever!

What a great idea!

For their $15, each child that wanted to sign up got a t-shirt, a 4-mile hike, and a post-hike BBQ…and all this started at the beginning of 6th hr, so they also got out of their 6th and 7th hour classes.Smile 

Close to 100 kids signed up and came to hike their booty’s off and raise money, which was then donated to our Lending A Hand Fund!!!!  (I still don’t have the exact totals but I am guessing somewhere close to $1000!!!) Print

There was a LOT of walking up and down our Ozark hills:




And there were several breaks at the top of some of these small mountains! This is some of Zach’s 8th grade class:




And what sounds better to 100+ kids and adult chaperones at the end of a long 4-mile hike??


A BBQ of course!  Sponsored by a local bank, there were hot dogs, chips, granola bars, and drinks all waiting for the hungry mob when we returned.




I gave little impromptu speech on how “Yes, this hike was hard…but fighting cancer is even harder.”  I also thanked them for participating and showing that they care. Red heart 




I could probably stop with the pictures now, but since It’s my blog and I’m a little biased, here are some of my favorite hikersWinking smile  I love and need their support more than they’ll ever know.HIKETYLER



It was a perfect day to tell cancer to…



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