Thursday, October 7, 2010



Is the face of a little girl who still has stable scans one year off treatment!


Is the face of a little girl who will be celebrating her 10th birthday in 2.5 weeks.


Is the face of a little girl, who gets to just be a little girl for the first time since she was about 4.

And this?

All makes me absolutely giddy with joy! I sobbed today in front of God and everybody in my clinical group at the hospital when I got the news. I will be calling the surgeon tomorrow to schedule the surgery to remove her port.

Love to all~

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A year later

It has been just over a year since Mandy had her last chemo. She has pink in her cheeks, bounce in her step, thick and healthy hair and an energy that seems to know no bounds. Tomorrow we go for the one year scan. If that is stable, we will schedule the surgery to remove her port and let go of the last of the physical reminders of the war. We are going to make a necklace or maybe a Christmas ornament out of it. Just so we always know that ultimately, we were very blessed that out of something so scary and so ugly came something beautiful.

Alannah is 16 now and will get her drivers license soon. If you have an errand to run, she's your girl... she will be more than willing to drive anywhere for any reason, I'm sure. Now, if only she had a car.

Zachary is in middle school now and slowing discovering that maybe girls don't have cooties. He is as funny and charming as ever, God help me.

I started school almost 6 months ago. When I grow up, I want to be a nurse and in another two years or so, hopefully, I will be. Pediatric oncology has my heart and I really want to be able to do something there. But, I just finished my labor and delivery rotation and absolutely loved it. I am truly passionate about nursing and really feel like this is the career I am supposed to have.

And, after 19+ years, Ronnie and I are no longer married. The why's and how's and coulda, woulda, shoulda's don't matter now. I am grateful for our marriage and for our children. And I believe, we can both go forward and find joy and love and happiness.

Hopefully, tomorrow brings more news of stable tumors. I will let you know.

Love to all~

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Thank you!

So, we threw a great big party, to watch the first broadcast of the Eukanuba National dog show in which the ACE awards were presented to 5 amazing dogs and their people. You can see Mandy and Poodle's clip from the show here

About 100 of the people who have embraced our family over the last two years joined us and many more who were there in spirit. We put together a little video to say thanks to some of those people. Unless we used the song "Freebird," there simply wasn't going to be a song long enough to sufficiently be able to thank everybody. But, these lyrics were far more appropriate, so, here we go, from us, to you ... Thank you!

Love to all~

Thursday, January 28, 2010

From the St. Petersburg Times

Columnist Ernest Hooper captures Mandy's story and our family's journey beautifully. We share the link with gratitude.