Monday, March 30, 2009

Deana is out of ICU!

Isn't this amazing news? She is a miracle. She is back on her laptop and sending out her own updates. She even signed up with Facebook! I keep using the word amazing because I just can't think of anything else. To think of where she was a few weeks ago. So inspiring!

Monday, March 30, 2009 7:48 PM, CDT
Dear family and friends,
Deana has had a very busy day -- many tests and blood too. Generally speaking, Deana is doing quite well. However, cardiology did point out in a recent electro-cardiogram she has a "leaky valve". Medicine is being added to her regimen to account for this, and apparently it is quite common in Hyper-CVAD chemotherapy patients. Deana is taking this in stride.
Doctors have postponed the very important, yet painful bone marrow biopsy that was scheduled for today in hopes the procedure can be performed while Deana is consciously sedated. (The pain Deana endured the last time was so great, I complained to the doctors and insisted we manage her pain better this round.)
Deana is now eating soft food again!! Doctors won't remove the feeding tube for a couple more days until they're sure Deana doesn't have any complications.
Deana's spirits are very high and she remains optimistic despite being a pincushion for all these tests.
Have a great evening. Either Deana or I will post again tomorrow.
Virtual hugs to all,
Jack and Deana
Sunday, March 29, 2009 9:34 AM, CDT
Good day everyone, it is GREAT to be out of ICU. I am sitting up in a chair writing this enjoying my morning. Missing my boyz like crazy though.
My wonderful parents will be here today. They have not left my side either. Love you Mom & Dad, thank you for being here.
Just wanted to say hi & hug your loved ones today.
Deana & Jack

First Haircut

Elise had her first haircut on Saturday! She was so excited about it as we drove to the salon.
Then, she got very nervous.

We had Sam get his haircut too - at the same time to show her how a pro handles it.

She had this sad, very serious look on her face the entire time. And not one peep.

We tried to get her to smile with the promise of a lollipop but this was the best she could do.

The tough decision - what color lollipop to pick.

Here is Sam with his hair cut long. Wish he would let me cut more but he insists he does not look like Sam if he has short hair.


As some of you know, I am quite the follower of the Pioneer Woman. She has great photography tips, yummy recipes, and is just fun for me to read. A few weeks ago she hosted another blogger at her house to give lessons on making cakepops. Seeing that I had to come up with a way to keep the kids entertained this weekend so Keith could do manly work around the house. He put up frames on all our window and they look so good!! I decided to try to make some cakepops with the kids.

First you bake a cake.
Nothing fancy, I just used a boxcake.

While the cake is cooling, go out to the garage and take pictures of your husband working.

We owe a big Thank You to our friend Doug for loaning us his tools!! This saw has laser lights and everything to make the cuts perfect.
Once the cake is cool, crumble it up in a bowl and add frosting. Mix together and then form into small balls. Chill in the freezer. And if you really want to try to make these then you can find way better instructions and way, way better examples at bakerella's website listed above.
Also, I had a defective tub of pillsbury frosting so I had to use a tub of the whipped kind of frosting. I think a regular tub of frosting probably has a better consistency for getting the balls to stay formed.

Once the balls are chilled. You use a little cookie cutter to shape the bottoms of the cupcakes...if that's the shape you want to make. I made some as cupcakes and left some as balls to use for the birds. If you do the cupcake shapes. Dip the bottoms into some melted chocolate and then put upside down on a cookie sheet, stick a lollipop stick in the bottom and let the chocolate harden.

It only takes a few minutes and then you can get ready to decorate!

I used some white and blue melting candy to coat the tops of the cupcakes and then the kids added the sprinkles and candy to the tops.
I saved some plain ones for me to try to really decorate once the kids were in bed. I wanted to be able to relax and let them have fun without getting uptight about how they turned out. I didn't need to worry because even our messiest ones turned out cute!

Then I took another picture of the windows just to show some before and after.

Sam helped Keith with the windows in the playroom. Way too late at night, I tried to make a Hello Kitty cake pop. Cute, but doesn't compare to Bakerella's.
And then some bluebirds. They look a little bloated but I still think they turned out pretty darn cute!
The next morning I put them all in the wood thing on my dining room table as a center piece. I think they are so cute. These will for sure be the treat of choice for all future holidays and kids birthday parties. The kids loved making them and really loved eating them!!

**You have to look at the comment I received on this post. It is from Bakerella herself, the inventor of cakepops, the one who was invited on Martha Stewart to talk about her cakepops! She likes my bluebirds! :-)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Pictures for Deana

Yesterday we loaded our bikes, scooters, skateboards and doll strollers in the car and headed to Deana's house for a little playdate in her court with the boyz. Deana and Jack always refer to them as boyz because of their Z names, Zane and Zachary. They are very cute boyz! Anyway, I wanted to take some pictures for Deana and Jack and post them here so they can see them. I know they miss them terribly. I can only imagine. So Deana and Jack, here are some pictures of your boyz. They were not too interested in letting me take their pictures until I told them I wanted to send them to their Mommy. Suddenly, they were very open to a photo shoot. I apologize, they were having too much fun so it was hard for me to get some good shots...but I managed a couple.

Also, if you happen to read more of this'll notice I have been posting updates on you here. I hope you don't mind. This blog is mostly for my family since we don't live close. They know about you and what you are going through and wanted to get updates on your progress. They are praying and fighting for you too!!

Jake was zooming down your court at about 100mph. Not kidding. And Zach is a little dare devil on his big bike too - he was going too fast for me to get a good shot!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Old Town

On Saturday, the Wierenga's invited us to take a train to old town with them for some lunch, a margarita and some wandering around.

Here is Sam on the train headin' South.

Here is Elise, sitting upright in her chair, facing forward. She looks like a serious rider. No messing around on the train for this little chica.

Ella preferred to stand in the aisle.

The train station is just across the street from one of the main entries to Old Town.

We were hungry right when we arrived. Of course, right?! My kids are always ready to eat. That reminds me, when we took our seats on the train, not two minutes later we hear this from Sam. "When are they bringing my drink and my snack?"

We found a restaurant with freshly made tortillas. Yum.

This happy lady is making corn tortillas. There was another happy woman behind her making flour tortillas. I like homemade tortillas but these ladies looked miserable. So miserable that I started wondering what they get paid to stand in the front of this restaurant all day, on display, making tortillas. Then I wondered if they were paying back some sort of debt for coming to this country. Then I wondered if they actually live in the US or do they have to go back and forth to Tiajuana? Too many wonderings...took the fun out of the homemade tortillas. Good thing we were seated pretty quickly.

After lunch, we walked around an area full of street vendors. We found a guy playing guitar.
Ella started dancing.

A crowd gathered to watch Ella and another very energetic toddler dance to the music. One very cheerful tourist started taking pictures of Ella. Very random.

After tiring herself out dancing, Ella modeled some adorable hats for us.
Elise and Ella are now owners of the cute butterfly hat you see Elise wearing in this next picture. BTW, I can't take credit for the adorable outfit Elise is wearing on this day. It is a hand-me-down from Skyler Varin. Skyler's mommy buys real nice clothes. I think I caught Ella eyeing this dress.

Ella LOVES to hold Sam's hand when she walks around. Sam is very patient with her and I think he LOVES it too. Here is Ella leading Sam down some dirt alleyway. Wonder where she thought she was taking him?

We took pictures in a tree.

After the tree picture, Elise and I were approached by some film students working on a little movie about an orange rolling through San Diego. They asked if they could film Elise chasing the orange. It took a couple of minutes and the promise of ice cream to get her to agree to chase the orange. The students said the film will be up on You Tube in about a month. They showed me some of the scenes. Looks cute. I must remember to check for the orange movie in April.
Time to catch the train back up to North County to get some ice cream!