Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Football Wrap Up!!

This weekend finished up Turner's flag football season.  He played 2 games in the freezing cold Saturday morning.  He made his 1st touchdown!!  He was so proud and we were too!  He also pulled 2 flags.  It was a great way to end the season.
  Sunday night they had an awards banquet.  It was long...but a lot of fun.  They had an illusionist, the kids received a medal and a football, and there were ice cream sundaes afterwards.  They had a few giveaways, maybe 6.  I would say there were several hundred people there.  Would you believe I won a free registration for Turner to play next year and Kev won a $100 Amazon card?  It was pretty unbelievable and we were pretty excited!!  I just might be getting a fitbit for my birthday with that amazon card;)
  It was a long season and Turner often complained about going to practice or a game.  But he always had fun once he got there and was able to learn about the game.  It was a good experience for him.  Usually basketball is up next, but with my surgery in 3 weeks, we decided to take a break.  So other than Mo's gymnastics and church activities, we are laying low.  Next up will be baseball for Turner and soccer for Mo in the spring.  I am thinking gymnastics might be in Harper's near future as well.  She talks about it all the time!

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Kick Off the Season Party!

Last Saturday we headed to the gym to see the new competition leos and it was big/little sister reveal.  Mo was so excited and was really hoping to be a little sister again.   She got her wish and actually got Tori, who happened to be her big Sis 2 years ago.  They are on the same team this year so it worked out great.  They love each other and will be at the same meets, which makes delivering happies easy.
  We love all their new gear and are ready for the season.  It will be a nice distraction from radiation and the kids love the out of town trips.  Let me tell you how sweet and the supportive the gym has been to our family-
  A few weeks ago Erica (manager/head coach) asked me to share my story with her.  Since it was Breast Cancer Awareness month I just assumed she would send out an email telling my story.  Well, at the beginning of the party, she called me out on the floor.  They had told everyone my story and people brought in gifts/gift cards that went in a huge gift bag.  I was floored!  The coaches also gave me a pretty survivors bracelet and we got a $175 gift certificate to the gym.  We were so surprised and so touched.  I think keeping things normal for the kids these past 6 months has really helped them and Mo is always ready to head to the gym.  She is loved there and she loves all the girls and coaches.  River City really blessed us and we are proud to be a part of the gym.
  When it was over, we headed to IHOP for dinner.  Turner loves that place!  It was a sweet night.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Bell has Been Rung!

Monday was a big day!  It was my last chemotherapy treatment.  16 rounds over the last 5 months.  I can't believe it is over.  In the beginning, I thought the day would never come.  I began the day by opening my last gift from Kelly and Mrs. Martha.  Oh my goodness...it is a pillow and I absolutely love it.  She has blown my mind these pat 6 months.  She is a friend I cant imagine doing life without and and am so glad we went to Europe together 19 (yikes) years ago!  Kev had taken the day off and we were going to check the kids out of school when it was time for me to ring the bell.  Maddie woke up at 3:30 that morning needing a breathing treatment and crying because she couldn't breathe.  Sooo, plans had to be adjusted and Kev had to get Maddie to the doctor.  My parents took me to chemo and Megs got Harper.  Thankfully Maddie was ok, and everyone was still able to watch me ring the bell.
  I had several sweet friends come and sit with me, my parents brought balloons and cupcakes, and Mrs. Cowell made a beautiful sign for me to hold.  It was a special day.  We have had a wonderful support system throughout this and that has made this much easier to bare.  The volunteers and the nurses are always so sweet.  One, Delia, used to go to Ellendale, and has been a tremendous encouragement to us throughout this process.  God has put some amazing people in my path to walk along side me.
  Once chemo was over, I was able to go outside and ring the bell!  It felt good.  Before it happened, I thought I would cry.  I got emotional thinking about it the week before.  I was just relieved to be done and to be doing well.....I felt complete joy.  It is one obstacle we have overcome and the to do list will just get shorter from here.  Praying to say goodbye to cancer forever in a few short months.
  After that, most of us went to Newks for lunch.  My sweet daddy bought everyone's lunch and we had a good time with good food and fellowship.  We couldn't have gotten through these last 5 months without my parents.  They always either had Harper or were taking me to chemo on Mondays.  They would then pick up the big kids and keep them most of the day.  I just happened to get sick during football season.  They never complained, or hesitated to help. 
  Chemo made me physically sick.  Chemo killed most if not all the cancer.  Chemo made me tired.  Chemo made me so very thankful for my husband, parents, sister, and friends.  Chemo brought me to my knees a few times, which strengthened my relationship with the Lord.  I sure don't want to have chemo again, but it sure did bring some sweet blessings.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

A Little Recap!

Last Monday was my 2nd to last treatment....which means tomorrow is it!!  I will be reclaiming my Mondays.  God has been so good to me throughout this, and I feel like I have made it through the 16 rounds and am in the same shape as when I began....minus the hair, plus a few pounds, and MINUS the cancer!  I will take it.  But back to last Monday-dad went with me and I saw Dr. Tauer.  We just love him and dad snapped our picture together at the end of the appointment.  I will see him again before surgery to make sure my numbers are climbing back up.  They were actually pretty good already.  He was really pleased with how I have done.  What can I say, I am a model cancer patient:)
  Then onto the Chemo room.  The food truck that was there was Grilled Cheese Gourmet.  Oh my goodness!!  We both enjoyed a pimento cheese with bacon on sourdough bread.  It was delicious!!!  Then I immediately took a nap.  Once we were done we headed home.  Mimi had spent the day keeping Harper and ate lunch with both kids at Oak.  She had a busy day while I ate and napped!
  It was a pretty easy low key week.  We spent lots of time at home. Tuesday we had everyone over for dinner and I didn't take a single picture.  The kids had fun playing though. Thursday I picked up 40 lbs of chicken from Zaycon.  That is a lot of chicken...but it was a deal.  So I spend the next 2 hours cutting, dividing, and making about 10 freezer meals.  It will be great for Kevin in December after my surgery.  I even shared a bit with my parents and sister!
  Friday Kev had to go to Nashville for football.  My dad kindly offered to sit with the kids while my mom and I shopped at Goodwill.  I am happy to report I got 5 shirts and a dress for $26.  Score!  We were going to all go to dinner and were hungry when we pulled up to the house.  Maddie was standing in the doorway looking pretty unhappy, Turner had tears in his eyes, and Boo Boo was sitting on the couch looking a bit....frustrated perhaps.
  You ever heard of the toy Bunchems?  I will post a pic of the box so you know to never buy them.  They are the devil.  Turner decided to grab a handful (about 40 of them) and put them in H's hair.  About 2 hours, conditioner, vegetable oil, scissors, and lots of "ouchies" later, we got them all out.  Not fun!  Boo Boo even had his birthday cancelled by Turner in the process.  But all is well now.  H's hair doesn't look terrible and we enjoyed Sonic at 8 that night.  Whew...Kev missed a fun one!!
  Tomorrow is the big day and I will share more then!  Also, my hair is starting to grow back!  It is looking a little gray, but I will take it.  I am going to start sharing pics to see how quickly it grows back.  I will be excited to retire my hats:)

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Happy 9th Birthday Maddie!

It is official...she is 9 and we have celebrated the last 3 weeks.  Don't think I will have a party that early again.  We celebrated with friends, Nonna and Marcy came 2 weeks ago to celebrate, we had a family party on Halloween, she took jump ropes on Monday to school for all her classmates, and we took cookies that night to gymnastics.  Enough!
  Maddie is very independent, competitive, determined, and has a mind of her own.  She thinks she is grown!  She loves Jesus, gymnastics, AR points (for real), the outdoors, doing anything with friends, making utube videos, and spending one on one time with is.  She and Turner are either the best of friends, or don't get along at all.  She is generally pretty sweet to Harper and can be a big help to me.
  She asks a lot of hard questions and is very curious.  She has a lot of questions about cancer and has been very sweet to me when I haven't felt good.  The hair loss was an issue for her at first, but she is good now:)  She enjoys school, already talks about boys (good grief), and is pretty outgoing.  She doesn't always remember to say yes and no m'am (usually doesn't), but she is a work in progress.
  We are so thankful for our Maddie Rae and can't believe she is already 9.  I remember having her like it was yesterday.  I hope the next 9 years don't go as quickly!

Monday, November 2, 2015


  We had a fun weekend dressed up in our costumes, playing with friends, and trick or treating.  Friday, Kev had a game and the kids and I headed to church for Trunk or Treat.  We had the best turnout and the kids had so much fun.  I gave out candy the whole time with Turner helping a lot.  Harper went trunk or treating and then sat in my trunk and ate 5081 pieces of candy....I definitely didn't win any awards that night.  We had such a great turnout the church ran out of hotdogs, so a trip to Sonic was made on the way home.  Kev came home at 10 to me asleep on the couch and the 3 kids were still awake...whoops!
  Saturday it rained a lot of the day, but it stopped when it was time to trick or treat.  We all went to Mimi and Boo Boo's for Barbecue and let Maddie open her gifts from the family and eat cupcakes.  She has had the birthday that never ends.  This is the 3rd weekend we have celebrated with someone.  Thankfully her bday is today, so until next year Mo:)  I will do a separate post on her.  We gave her a bar that hooks on the doorway and she has been using it a ton.  Competitions start in 2 months.
  Kev and Boo Boo took the kids around their neighborhood and on the way home we stopped at the houses in ours.  This was the first year they really trick or treated and they enjoyed it...unless H saw a dog in the doorway.  Then the screaming and running began.  Halloween was fun and I can't believe it is November.  So many things to be thankful for this year.  We are going to have a busy end of the year.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Cancer Update

The past two weeks have been filled with lots of doctor appointments....surgeon twice, plastic surgeon, radiologist, and the regular Monday chemo.  Harper told me the other day that I have to go to the doctor every day.  It feels like it.  But we have a plan!!  And I can see an end in sight!  And the chemo worked!  So we are going to do everything that we can to keep this from coming back.
  Which means on December 11th I will be having a bilateral mastectomy with expanders put in.  They will do a sentinel node biopsy which will determine how many lymph nodes have to be removed.  I am praying not meaning.  I will spend that next month recovering and going in to have the expanders filled.  Then I will have 30 rounds of radiation to my chest, underarm, and neck.  I will go everyday Mon-Fri for 6 weeks.  Then, hopefully there will be no complications and a final reconstruction surgery will be about 6 months after that.
  So we are looking at a year....a year that cancer has disrupted our life, but definitely not controlled or claimed it.  I am tired, ready to have my hair back, ready to move on to the next chapter.  But one thing this has taught me is to take and be thankful for one day at a time.  We aren't guaranteed tomorrow so I am not going to wish the next 7 months away.  There is no telling what they have in store.  God has met all of our needs and more.  He has given us the most incredible support system and he has allowed me to get through chemo a lot easier than it could have been.  I hate this, but am thankful for a lot that has come from it.
  Cancer changes you.  The small stuff is no longer worth sweating.  This has strengthened my relationship with God, my famiy, my friends.  It has taught me to be brave, to not be fearful.....to cling to bible verses such as Joshua 1:9.  I pray that once this is over that it never comes back.  I don't want to go through this again, buy I also don't want to forget what I have learned.
  Last Monday Nonna came and sat with me through chemo.  I loved having her there, but I did manage sleep through some of it.  My parents stopped by to say hi and we all enjoyed Cheesecake Factory once I was done.  I have enjoyed some yummy lunches after chemo:)
  The ballgame that Friday recognized breast cancer survivors before the game and Kev was able to walk me out.  The Pink Heals truck was there and I was able to sign it along with my mom.  It was a nice thing for Arlington to do for Breast Cancer Awareness month.  October is coming to a close, but I hope everyone remains aware.  It is so important to go to your yearly exams and check yourself regularly.  Mine was hard to detect, but very big.  If it hadn't been in my lymph nodes I think my story would be a lot different.  Another example of God taking care of me.  You don't want it to spread, but by doing so we were able to find it.  God is good:)
  I have so much else to post, will get to it soon:)