Thursday, April 30, 2009


What I've been doing and how I'm seeing a difference

Lunges! Stepper like this one! Weight training! Walking! Push-ups! Yep, I've gotten motivated. I'm finally feeling better than I have in a couple of years and am taking advantage of it. And once you start seeing results, it just motivates you to do more.

I started out doing 10 lunges per leg and 5 push-ups per day. I then bought the stepper and started using that. It came with 2 work-out DVD's. It is unbelievable the difference I have seen in my stamina since I started this. Even when I was only doing so few reps, I was getting stronger.

J and I walked a hill last night in our neighborhood that I hadn't attempted in a very long time. I did it without taking any breaks. It's never been about my lungs (well, since transplant at least). My leg muscles have just been so weak. They are the first muscles that seem to "waste" when I get sick, and for me, they are the hardest to build up.

I've also been eating tons of protein which is making a huge difference. I've always loved almonds, but now since I'm exercising so much, I'm going through a 2 lb tub of almonds in a little over a week. I am also eating a lot of chicken, cottage cheese, and soy nuts. Anytime you consume a lot of protein you should also consume a lot of water, so I'm doing that also. My one downfall is chocolate. LOL. I'm craving it everyday! With that of course, comes insulin. :)

When asked by pre-transplanters what advice I would give them, it has always been "Build up your leg muscles", because being in the hospital decreases muscle mass so fast! Lunges are a perfect way to do this, besides the obvious... walking.

Other than me trying to act like Jillian Michaels, things have been pretty uneventful. We've been staying busy and enjoying the springtime. :) I hope all of you are too!

Monday, April 27, 2009


Here is a picture of Casey with braces! I'll get back to my regular posting soon. :)

Saturday, April 25, 2009

I've been horrible

I have done a really bad job of updating my blog. Feeling good is a wonderful thing though!

We helped my sister move today. She bought another home in the same neighborhood she's lived in for 7 years now. It's just larger. It's a beautiful house. I'm so excited for them.

I've been exercising like mad! I'm feeling good and have energy now, and I'm doing something with it! I even bought a stair stepper that Casey and I are both using. I'm going to have a booty if it kills me. LOL.

Are any of you "Twihards" going to Twicon 2009 July 30th through August 2nd? It's in Dallas, and they are going to have tons of stuff for us Twilight fans, including a Volturi masquerade ball, guest appearances from the stars of the Twilight movie, and a fansite meet up. It should be great fun. We are thinking about taking Casey, but haven't decided yet. It's quite expensive.

Is it just me, or are any other CFers/transplant recipients/other immunosuppressed people concerned about this?

I hope all of you are having a healthy, happy weekend! If you have time, check out my hubby's blog.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

No drama

...has meant no posting for me! While there hasn't been anything bad going on, there hasn't been anything exciting either, but I'll take it over surgeries and hospitalizations anyday!!!

Casey did get her braces yesterday. Her mouth is very sore! Hopefully she'll start feeling better in a couple of days.

I am catching up on my photography classes, and since I've been feeling so good these past couple of weeks, I'm actually out and about and enjoying life. I hope all of you are!

[rolls eyes, shrugs shoulders]

Jason is trying to become active with his blog again. He's even so narcissistic as to make this post in the third person, while his wife is at home sleeping and completely unaware that he's exploiting her blog; all to promote himself.

Follow along at your own risk.

Jason (posted this)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

I Acknowledge...


I have not been doing a good job of keeping up with my blogger friends lately.

I am behind on my photography classes.

My floors need mopping.

Closed minded people make me hysterical sometimes.

I am only on page 64 of the book I'm reading for the online book club.

I went back to bed after taking Casey to school and slept until 2:20 this afternoon.


My friend Jeri, who had a double lung transplant and liver transplant last Thursday, is doing GREAT! She might be getting out of the hospital tomorrow!!! Is that unbelievable or what? I'm so happy for her. What a fighter she is.

My friend Clark, who has cancer and was told to call in hospice, is doing better. He is still in Mexico receiving treatment, and he is sitting up eating and feeling stronger. Yay!!! Definitely an answer to prayer! He still needs your thoughts and prayers though. He isn't out of the woods by any means, but it's just great to hear that he's feeling better and actually able to eat instead of having to rely on parenteral nutrition.

My kidney transplant appointment was very uneventful yesterday! That's a great thing. :) When the doc came in, I was eating chocolate because my sugar was low. For all of you diabetics, you know how sometimes you get a little delirious when your sugar gets low? Well, he must have thought I was a little off my rocker. I acted a little bit like I was drunk. Thankfully, Casey was in there to correct anything I said that was off. haha. I was fine after about 10 minutes. Anyway, my labs look great!!

I got to see 2 transplant friends yesterday. I had met one of the girls right before my transplant. She was about a year out of her transplant when I first met her, but was still on oxygen. She had a really rough time after her transplant, but she's been doing great ever since. She looked awesome yesterday, and we had a great lunch together. Then I got to see another friend, who I only knew online. She was speaking to healthcare workers at Duke about patient advocacy, so Mom, Casey and I went to hear her speak. What a great speaker she is... and so funny! I got to meet her briefly afterward. It's so much fun meeting online friends for the first time in person. I have NEVER been disappointed!

I hope all of you are having a great week! Casey went back to school today. Their spring break was cut short, because of make-up snow days. We did have a good week though!!

Casey just sent me this picture. She took it on her phone yesterday. It's of me and Dana, my friend I met for lunch yesterday...

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Think before you comment

“For some kinds of thought, especially moral decision-making about other people’s social and psychological situations, we need to allow for adequate time and reflection,” said first author Mary Helen Immordino-Yang of the USC Rossier School of Education.

In other words, when you read something on the internet, whether it be via email, blog post, Twitter update, Facebook update, etc., think about what the other person is saying before you comment, because it may take some time to understand what the other person is saying.

I was so angry at something that happened online last night AND the subsequent email that I received regarding said incident, that I was considering taking a month's break from the computer. Because there were people who jumped to conclusions, formed their own opinions based on other's very quick conclusions (instead of using their brains to formulate their OWN opinion), and didn't take time to try to understand what someone might be trying to convey, there were some very (dare I say) idiotic comments made about said subject. Then to top it off, an email was sent to me about my comment on said subject accusing me of something that made absolutely no sense at all!!!! There was absolutely NO basis for it!

What made me most angry was the fact that people were getting so offended at something that wasn't directed at them in the first place. It seems that people respond before even TRYING to understand someone else's position on something. AND some people respond in an ugly manner if the other person's opinion differs from theirs. When did everyone have to have the same opinion? I didn't get that memo!!!!!

Here is a great article that I encourage you to read if you make any online comments at all.

Sorry for the rant, but I really think that people need to be more open-minded, and realize that there are going to be people out there who have different political/religious belief, life situations, etc, and that's OK! They are also going to have different opinions and shouldn't be scolded because of it. The internet has allowed us to have friends from every kind of culture and background, so doesn't it make sense that opinions are going to vary greatly?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter pics

A great day! Church was great, and then the rest of the day was spent with family. I hope all of you had a wonderful Easter.

And this is the best pic of the day! Jason actually broke this rocking chair. It was rotting anyway, but we can't help but tease him about eating too much Easter lunch. :)

Thursday, April 9, 2009

She got the call!

UPDATE SATURDAY AFTERNOON: This was posted by Jeri's step-daughter Kristen today. "I just saw Jeri, she was doing good. Bekkie & I got to see her walk down the hall, it was pretty amazing considering she did it WITHOUT oxygen. We almost cried. But the doctors came in & said she was a "paper tiger", all her liver numbers are perfect & her lungs are awesome. She's doing really well, just in pain, but we just left because the pain service was in there trying to take the edge off. So, all is excellent. She looks amazing." I'm so happy for and proud of Jeri. Is this awesome news or what? Keep those thoughts and prayers coming!


UPDATE SATURDAY MORNING: Again, I'm going to copy and paste from Jeri's caringbridge site. The last entry was written by her hubby at 7:30 pacific time last night. It sounds really good!!! Keep the prayers coming. Here is what Doug had to say..."She sat in a chair for over an hour earlier, next step walking around ICU after she rests for a couple of hours. She is still in tons of pain, mostly back pain caused by drain tubes. Dr Hoops says he would like to pull them tommorow. Also doing another bronch in the morning. All the staff in ICU are amazed how well Jeri looks and her recovery up to this point. She has a slight fever, hoping just post op fever.Nurse says probably just secreations in lungs, from not being fully inflated yet. Told Jeri to do her breathing exercise every half hour."


UPDATE FRIDAY AFTERNOON: Here is the update from Jeri's caringbridge site... Doug wrote "Came back from ICU again, talked to two Lung Docs they said jeri's vitals are strong and stable. ICU nurse said they hope they can get her up and start walking this evening, all I can say is " WOW" so soon.I am so excited for her, her first steps without yukylngs in a very long time. She was a little more alert this time around." I'm SO stoked!


UPDATE FRIDAY MORNING: Well, I didn't go to sleep until 4:00 am, and I've had my phone by my bed all night. I heard from Doug at 6:30 (eastern time) this morning and again just a few minutes ago. Everything seems to have gone well. Early this morning, he told me that the lungs were in, liver was in, and all they had to do was reconnect the bile duct and artery to the liver, and then close up incisions. Just now he told me that he is getting ready to go up to post-op to see what's going on, because he hasn't heard from the docs in awhile. The last he talked to the surgeons, they said that the organs were working beautifully!! YAY! I'll update when I know more!! Praise God!!!!!!


UPDATE: The organs were good, so Jeri went into surgery about 4:00 pm pacific time. The surgery will probably take 10 to 15 hours! I'll update as I know more. Please keep those prayers coming.


My dear friend Jeri just got the call! Yep, she's going in for a double lung and liver transplant!!! She was just listed on Monday!!!!! For those of you on CF2chat, you may remember her.

I am so excited. I had the wonderful privilege of meeting Jeri a couple of years ago when she and her husband Doug came to North Carolina to visit the race shops. They are big Nascar fans! This will be the first double lung/liver transplant that her center has done. Her lung transplant surgeon, who is now the head surgeon at her hospital in California, assisted my transplant surgeon at Duke during my surgery over 7 years ago. He is a really great surgeon, so I know she is in great hands!

Please keep Jeri in your thoughts and prayers today. Pray that the lungs and liver will be viable and in perfect shape to be transplanted, and pray for the wisdom of her surgeons. I will update as I hear more.

YAY Jeri!!!!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Who knew...

that braces cost so much now? OK, I won't say what every parent says... "When I was little...", because we know that everything costs more now than it did when we were little.

Casey gets braces in 2 weeks. I'm so thankful for good insurance! She's on her dad's insurance and Jason's, so she's pretty much covered. 

She only has to have them on for 10 months, so she'll be getting them off around the middle of her 8th grade year. She has no bite problems and no teeth that need pulling so that's good. I have never known anyone to keep them on for such a short time. I'm not complaining though! I think I had mine on about 18 months.

The orthodontist also told us that they take kid's wisdom teeth out earlier now than they did years ago. I think I was 22 or something like that. Now, I guess the average age is about 16 or 17. They will decide when she needs them out after she gets her braces off.

Do any of you still wear your retainer? My teeth are just now starting to shift. I haven't worn my retainer since I was about 18 and my dog ate it. :) Seriously! 

Mish Mash

Casey has her first orthodontist appointment today. 

Casey got accepted to a new school, and we went to an informational meeting about it last night. Apparently this school looks better on college resumes than even AP classes in a regular high school. There was a lady there who had interviewed with Dartmouth, and she said they put students from this type of school at the top of the pile!!! Holy cow!!! Dartmouth? Obviously this tells you how challenging this school is, so Casey is definitely in for some hard work! Yikes!

Health is good. I have actually been feeling better in the past 2 weeks than I have in years (well, with the exception of some CF intestinal issues the past 2 days). 

I am SO behind on my photography classes. I have 5 classes to catch up on. I'm being a really bad student.

My house is a mess! What have I been doing all this time I've been feeling good? Not cleaning house, that's for sure! :)

Balin is back to normal. We are giving him a Pepcid everyday, and he hasn't thrown up since. His back seems like the inflammation is completely gone. Yay!

Easter is this weekend. Do any of you have plans? Our plans for Sunday include church, my family, and Jason's family. It will be a busy day.

I head back to Duke next week for a kidney transplant appt. Afterward, I'm meeting a fellow CFer/transplant recipient friend I haven't seen since 2002. I'm really excited to visit with her!

That's all I've got for ya! I hope all of you are having a great week. Happy Wednesday!

Monday, April 6, 2009

And the winner is...

Ok, so we put the names in a hat... literally, and drew a name at exactly 8:00 pm EST. All the people who attempted to answer a question were entered. Casey drew the name after rooting around in the hat for a good 20 seconds... LOL. It was a completely fair drawing, just so you guys know...

AND the winner is... Christy (and no, not me... haha)!! Congratulations Christy!! Email me with your address, and I will send you the book! I wish everyone could have won. Maybe I'll have another contest again soon!!! Next time I'll make the answers multiple choice. :)

Some of you are serious Twilighters!!! Thanks so much to those who participated. You guys did great. I know they were hard questions. If Casey wasn't so into these books, I wouldn't know half of these answers, but I've heard her talk about Twilight for a year and a half now, so our whole family is pretty well versed in the entire Twilight series. LOL.

Here are the answers for those of you who haven't looked them up yet. If for some reason, Casey and I have gotten any of them wrong, or not answered them fully, please correct us...

1.) What is Edward's full name? Edward Anthony Masen Cullen

2.) What year was Edward born? 1901

3.) What was Edward dying from? the Spanish Infuenza

4.) What color Porche does Alice drive? Yellow

5.) What did Bella call Edward's volvo? A ____ ____ Volvo. Stupid Shiny Volvo

6.) How tall is Alice? 4' 10"

7.) What is Bella's special talent after she's turned? Mind shield

8.) How many ribs did Bella break during her attack from James? 4

9.) Who was Sam's high school sweetheart? Leah

10.) How did Carlisle try to kill himself after he found out he was a vampire? (3 ways) Jumping from great heights, drowning, and starvation

11.) What color was Bella's prom dress? deep blue

12.) What did Edward say Bella did in her sleep? talked

13.) What is Emmett's favorite animal to hunt? grizzly bear

14.) Who is the Volturi leader? Aro

15.) What was the name of the restaurant that Edward and Bella went to in Port Angeles? La Bella Italia

16.) What is Renesmee's middle name? Carlie

17.) Who did Quil imprint on? Claire

18.) What was the name of the half vampire/half human like Renesmee? Nahuel (there were others, but this was the main one)

19.) What was Jacob's nickname for Renesmee? Nessie

OK and this one is only for those who have read "Midnight Sun" (Edward's version of the story, which is only available here)...

20.) What did Edward put on his piano to help him write Bella's lullaby? Bella's lemonade bottle cap

Twilight drawing tonight!!!

Click here to enter the Twilight drawing. You don't have to repost, you don't have to add it to your Twitter or Facebook, and you don't have to spread the word. All you have to do is enter.

Drawing will be at 8:00 pm eastern time tonight. Casey will be drawing the name out of the hat! Look for a post about 8:15 pm for the WINNER! :)

Sunday, April 5, 2009


How to save up to $2,000 a year

Look 7 years younger

Eating super foods

Take better pictures

Easy "weighs" to lose weight

10 ways to get more stylish

New uses for common toiletries

Saturday, April 4, 2009

TV and other things

Heidi and Christy have inspired me to talk about TV!

Now I know many of you (especially those with small children or those of you who have a job outside the home) don't have time to watch TV. Unfortunately, I do. :) And because of it, like Christy and Heidi, I am addicted to TV. I love the shows that are on now, and am SO thankful for my DVR. Because of course, without it, I wouldn't be able to catch half of these (and I'd have to sit through all of the commercials.. ughh).

So, I thought I would share with you what my favorite shows are and why I like them. Feel free to comment about your favorite shows, whether they be the same as mine or not. It seems that my faves, and Christy's and Heidi's faves, are very different.

Here they are:

House - I love Hugh Laurie. Plain and simple. He is my absolute favorite actor (it doesn't hurt that he's British)! Because of my nursing background, I also love the medical part. I find myself looking up terminology they mention on there if I don't know what they are talking about. If you are a Hugh Laurie fan, then check out "A Bit of Fry and Laurie" on Youtube. It's hilarious. Especially the "Mr. Burmie" episode (for those of you who are animal lovers. :)

Fringe - Well, I must say that my husband has turned me into a Sci Fi geek. I love everything about this show. Especially the fact that it's not too "Hollywooded up". They keep the characters real. Dr. Walter Bishop is absolutely hilarious and is a such a joy to watch.

Without A Trace - I like the mystery surrounding the disappearances. I also like all of the characters.

Doctor Who - Mix the British and Sci Fi together and you have the perfect show! David Tennant is dreamy (I can't believe I just used that word...LOL) I'm going to be sad when they replace him after 2010. I also liked Christopher Eccleston in the role though, and British tv usually chooses their actors based on their talent and not how much plastic surgery they have had, so I'm sure the next Doctor will do a fine job in the role.

Psych - Oh my, what do I say about this...other than the show is hilarious? Shawn and Gus have the perfect relationship as partners. Casey, Jason and I are ROFL whenever we watch this show. We haven't missed an episode! Again, I'm so thankful for my DVR!!!

Monk - A good mystery coupled with some OCD! Funny, funny, funny. They are canceling it after 2010. Boooo!!!

CSI and CSI NY - I like anything forensic. Even though it's not very realistic a lot of times, it's still fun to watch. I have always been so interested in a medical examiner's career, and this gives me my fix every week. The more gore, the better!

Torchwood - A spin-off of Doctor Who! Again, mix the British, Sci Fi, and of course hunky John Barrowman together, and well... I can't get enough!

Criminal Minds - What a great show! Lot's of serial killer mysteries. I love the characters and the mystery. And of course Matthew Gray Gubler!!!

Eleventh Hour - I didn't like this show at first. But now, it has become one of my favorites. I love the science part of it, and of course the mystery, and Rufus Sewell is phenomenal in the role of Dr. Jacob Hood.

Lie to Me - It's fascinating to watch how they can tell if someone is lying or not. I don't know if everything they say on there is real or not, but it's so cool to watch. I love the mystery of it all.

Ok, I think that about covers it! Do any of you like these shows? What are your favorites?

In other news:

My friend Sara has written some great articles for Check them out.

Also, check out my friend Aimee's blog. Very cool fundraiser for CF.

Balin is throwing up everyday now. Does anyone know if I can give him a Pepcid everyday, or if that is only a temporary thing? His back seems to be all better, so that's good!

Casey is out shopping with her friends and step-mom today. She texted me earlier, and I think she's going to be buying Delia's out today. LOL. I just love this shirt with this belt and this bracelet. She already has the bracelet, but I'm going to have to buy the shirt and belt online, because they are out of her size at the store.

Want to join an online book club? My friend Carrie has started one. Go to her blog to vote on the upcoming book we are going to read! It's going to be so much fun!!

I'm meeting my family for dinner tonight at our favorite Italian restaurant. It seems I'm going there every weekend now. Jason is working, but is going to try to meet us for dinner.

Don't forget about the Twilight drawing if you are a Twilighter!!

Happy Saturday everyone!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Friends and a recital

I had a great time today with my friends Nicole and Trenda. I have known them both since high school, and we don't get to see each other often. They live in Virginia about 2 1/2 hours away. We met halfway today for lunch and then we went to the mall. One of our good friends Kristin usually comes with them when we meet, but she couldn't today. We missed you Kristin!!!

Here are some pics of us today. I couldn't resist taking the first one. There was this crazy family of mannequins in Old Navy, so I begged Trenda and Nicole to go stand with them. :)

Trenda and me

Nicole and Trenda

Nicole and me

Tonight was Casey's piano recital. She did a great job!! I almost didn't make it though. I left the mall with a lot of time to spare in order to get to Casey's recital on time. I even allowed for traffic. What I didn't allow for was a 1 hour and 40 minute delay, because of a wreck. I literally went 5 miles in that amount of time. I then had to drive 80 all the way to the church in order to make it on time. I hate driving that fast, but I didn't want to miss it. I was 3 minutes late. :)

Don't forget about the Twilight Drawing. It's happening on Monday night, so don't forget to put your entry in.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Twilight Giveaway!!!

Here are some questions that Casey and I came up with about The Twilight Series. I thought all of you Twilighters out there would enjoy this. Please answer as many as you can without looking the answers up in the book(s), or on the net. These questions are based on the books, not the movie.

To enter the drawing, all you have to do is try to answer at least one of the questions in the comment section. I know most people won't be able to answer all of them (unless you are a crazy, serious Twilighter like my daughter). You don't have to get them right or answer a certain amount... you only have to try!!! It's that easy! The drawing will be Monday night (April 6th). Again, please don't look the answers up! Just try to answer them from memory.

The winner will get the hardcover book "Twilight Director's Notebook...The Story of How We Made The Movie" by Catherine Hardwicke.

The description on the back of the book... "In this book you'll follow me through the creative process that went into making Stephenie Meyer's hypnotic novel come alive on-screen. Get the inside scoop on the wardrobe, storyboard sketches, behind-the-scenes photographs, and personal notes about making my favorite scenes." - Catherine Hardwicke, director of Twilight

Ok, here are the questions! Good luck!

1.) What is Edward's full name?

2.) What year was Edward born?

3.) What was Edward dying from?

4.) What color Porche does Alice drive?

5.) What did Bella call Edward's volvo? A ____ ____ Volvo.

6.) How tall is Alice?

7.) What is Bella's special talent after she's turned?

8.) How many ribs did Bella break during her attack from James?

9.) Who was Sam's high school sweetheart?

10.) How did Carlisle try to kill himself after he found out he was a vampire? (3 ways)

11.) What color was Bella's prom dress?

12.) What did Edward say Bella did in her sleep?

13.) What is Emmett's favorite animal to hunt?

14.) Who is the Volturi leader?

15.) What was the name of the restaurant that Edward and Bella went to in Port Angeles?

16.) What is Renesmee's middle name?

17.) Who did Quil imprint on?

18.) What was the name of the half vampire/half human like Renesmee?

19.) What was Jacob's nickname for Renesmee?

OK and this one is only for those who have read "Midnight Sun" (Edward's version of the story)...

20.) What did Edward put on his piano to help him write Bella's lullaby?

Remember: You have to answer at least one question to enter. It doesn't have to be the right answer :).

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Very Short Post

Getting a cut and color tomorrow. I totally need these thin ends gone!

Balin is doing great. It's like nothing was ever wrong with him. Yay!

I'm going to meet 2 very dear friends from VA for lunch on Friday. We are going to meet halfway. I can't wait.

Casey's piano recital is Friday night. I can't remember the song she is playing though. She's almost ready. One more day of practicing will do the job.

I have had NO nausea at all today. Could be the new med. How thankful I am for a day of eating!

For all of you Twilighters out there, tune in tomorrow for something fun!!! :)

Teen Talk

Being open and honest with your child, especially your teenager is so important, especially in this day and time. Girls feel so much pressure (boys may have some of this pressure, but not all of it) to be thin, attract a mate, lose their virginity, make perfect grades and do volunteer work to get into college, and dress in the very latest fashion to fit in. WIth so much pressure, you wonder how they ever make it to adulthood!

One of the best gifts I think we can give our children is to be open and honest with them no matter what. My closest friends know just how serious I am about this. I would say that Casey knows more about her body than most 40 year old women do. That may be the nurse coming out in me, but I think it's important. Whenever Casey has asked me a question, I have answered her honestly. My philosophy has always been that if she's old enough to ask, she's old enough to know the truth.

It's very important to teach our children about morals and values, but it's also important to teach them about the reality of life. Yes, I'm talking about sex. Teaching them ONLY abstinence and not how to protect themselves, should (or should I say when) the situation arise(s), is doing them a great disservice in my book. It's also possibly putting their lives in danger. When I was younger, it was not talked about as much as it is now. It was all hush, hush for most of us growing up. I don't think it should be like that. I think parents should be able to openly talk about this, and other subjects such as drugs, eating disorders, teen suicide, and peer pressure with their children. They are going to learn it from someone. Isn't it best to come from the parents?

Casey told me recently that all of her friends are saying they learned about all of these things from their friends, siblings, sibling's friends, etc. Casey said she was the only one who told her group of friends that she had learned these things from her mom. How sad is that?