Thursday, July 28, 2011

My pittiful Gracie..

If you don't know by now, I have two dogs, Gracie and Callie.  I got Gracie on New Years Eve of 2005 and she moved with me to Aiken where I knew no one!  She is very scared of everyone she doesn't know so she is stuck to my side all the time.  She is my baby.  I mean I love Callie too but she sticks to Wes so much and they have that special bond like Gracie and I do.  
Whenever I have a dog that is sick or hurt, it breaks my heart! When I came home from work last night, I loved on my Grace and realized her ears were swollen.  Wes's old lab, Buck, used to have this problem all them time so I knew what was wrong...
Gracie gets ear mites a lot, so we stay stocked with ear mites medicine to give her.  I usually check her ears every week but since I was gone for two weeks...her ears were covered in them. (Yes, Wes was home but I didn't ask him to look for them and plus when I am not around Gracie doesn't let Wes get too lovey dovey on her)
So when dogs have ear mites...they shake their heads and flap their ears against their head...causing them to bust blood veins or something like that.  So that is why her ears are swollen.  Wes said we had two options, go to the vet and they will tell us:
          A) they will cut their ear to make the bleeding come out but it will cause the ear to deform
               B) they will send us home and tell us to get ace bandages and wrap her ears to her head so she cant hit her ears against her head.

We just decided to start with option B and see if we can skip the high vet bills and fix it first.  The only problem is keeping the bandage on her head!  Look at my sweet baby!
This is how Wes wrapped her up.  I personally thought it was too tight because she kept burying her head in my lap (But she is also so skiddish I think she was really just scared)

I really didn't want to take any chances on it being too tight and her not being able to breath so I loosened it up on her.  I knew it was probably not tight enough, but it stayed on for the few hours she was inside with me last night.  When I checked on her this morning....the bandage looked like a necklace around her neck.  Lets hope that her ears get better soon so she wont have to get them cut open!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


It feels like forever since I have participated in the WILW blog posts!  
I'm Loving...that I have a new nephew!! Matthew Ryan Crawford was born on July 25th at 11:31pm weighing 9 pounds and 7 ounces and 22 inches long.  What a big boy :)  I can not wait to finally hold him!

I love this little guy already!  He is going to have the best big brother too..
I'm Loving...Apple Juice! I have always been a fan of apple juice but Mom kept the fridge stocked while I was in Texas and now I have to have a little every morning...a little obsessed right now :)
I'm Loving...that I keep getting volunteered to teach sessions at our Leader Kick Off on Saturday for my job.  I just found out yesterday I have to teach the leaders about making websites and I have no idea where to start.  Plus this is the same day as the huge benefit I have been working on forever for Jodi.  Can you feel the sarcasm??  Of course I'm not really loving this, but my co-worker is stepping up to help me come up with a lesson plan.  So I know it will all work out in the end :)

I'm Loving...Greenwood Businesses right now.  It is amazing how many people have donated items for the auction at Jodi's Benefit this Saturday.  Planning this benefit has almost been a full time job too! I have had a lot of fun doing this, but I am ready for it to be here!  (I work from 7-4ish about 30 miles away then the benefit starts at 7:30 but I want to be there to set up at 5...what a day!)  We have gift cards for restaurants, hair salons, for plants/flowers, massages, facials.  We have loads of sod and a beautiful large canvas oil painting.  Rounds of golf, photography sessions, jewelery, cosmetic bags....really anything you can think of, people have donated.  Now I just need people to come to the benefit and buy this stuff!! (it is located at a local bar and we will have bands playing)
I'm Loving... these guys....

I missed my sweet Gracie, wild Callie and my hubby Wesley while I was in Texas for two weeks!  It was so nice to be home :)

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Still trying to catch up!

First off, I just want to thank Aubrey for writing about Jodi again today...she is trying to get lots of people to send Jodi cards on her "re-birthday" a.k.a. transplant day.   I think that would be pretty awesome!  Check out Jodi's story on Caringbridge and she has her address there if you would like to send her one.  Jodi loves cards :)

Back to what I was going to post today...this past Saturday my friend Stephanie and I went to the "Dabo Swinney Lady Football Clinic" in Clemson.  This is a way for Dabo (Clemson Headcoach) and his wife, Kathleen, to raise lots of money for his All In Foundation, which supports breast cancer.  And it is also a perfect day for female football lovers to learn even more about the program.

We were split into large groups and went to the following sessions:
Class about Defensive
Shopping at local sisters store being one of them (of course you have to have that) 
Q&A with Kathleen about breast cancer
Tour of weight room
Class about offense
Tour of locker room and training room

It was so much fun, better than I ever imagined it would be.  Here are some pictures we took that day...
(just to warn you..this may be picture overload)
Dabo welcoming everyone

Our transportation for the day

Defensive Coach

Defensive is my favorite part of I loved this class

Casey, Heather, Ashley and me at The Beaded Tiger table (they worked the table for Jodi)

Just a small part of the money that was raised..I think it was around $45,000

Football players played "CU Bachelor" for some entertainment

Elvis even showed up

Weight room

he jumped up there in one hop! impressive

they showed off their a runway :)

pretended to strip for us

he liked to show off too

Dabo's wife Kathleen standing in the pink shirt

Locker room

Me and Stephanie with a guide Demonte...he played for Clemson from 95-99

Thought this was a funny sign in the bathroom

On the Hill for a group picture

Me, Stephanie and Dabo :)

Look who has a Jodi is a Rockstar shirt now...Dabo :)
Told you it would be picture overload!  I cant wait to go back to this event next summer!!

Monday, July 25, 2011

I'm Back!

I am back in South Carolina after two weeks in Texas!  I have had several emails from you guys asking how everything went in here is the update on "The Houston Project" as my Dad likes to call it.

My Dad and I drove to New Orleans on Saturday, July 9th.  I haven't been there since I was like 8 years old and I was very excited to be back.  The excitement didn't really last too long.  We stayed there for a couple hours and had a great dinner but I just can not get over the smell on Bourbon Street!  We were there before the big partying started and it already smelled like a mixture of beer and urine!  I do believe that people wear more to the beach than they do on this street.  Saying all of that, I am so glad I went but I am in no hurry to go back!

On Sunday, Dad and I arrived in Houston around lunch time.  We went to a great restaurant called Rudy' if you are ever in Texas....this is a must!

I really don't remember what else we did the rest of the day.  Monday, I checked into MD Anderson as a patient.  I had to give them all my blood it felt like for blood work....
See told you....21 vials of blood!  The next couple days, I had to have a EKG test, chest x-ray and meet with two different stem cell doctors.  We got a tour of the room where I would donate my stem cells and it was is the coldest room in the hospital!  They checked my veins to make sure they were good enough for the donation process because you have a line in one arm taking your blood, your blood goes through some machine to separate the stem cells and then there is another line in your other arm where you get your blood back.  But of course my veins were not big enough so I had to have a femoral CVC line put in my groin area the day of the procedure.  I was actually excited to get this so I would be able to move my arms during the 4 hours it took to give stem cells. 
I also learned about my neupogen shots that I had to take for 4 days.  We were able to do the shots at home so I didn't have to go to the hospital each day to get them.  They told me it would make my bones hurt, kinda like having arthritis.  Man did my bones hurt! I tried not to complain too much since this is nothing compared to what Jodi has to do but I did complain some...couldn't help it!  The pain was bones started hurting soon after I got the shot each morning.  The pain would move from one elbow to the other, go to my knees, back, chest and head.  I had a constant headache and backache.  Here are a few pictures....

two shots a day for 4 days

just a little pricey!

My Dad having a little fun with the situation

No, he didn't need the mask or stethoscope

His work is done! after all my shots were done, it was time to check in for blood work, get my CVC line and donate stem cells (last Monday).  The CVC line didn't hurt at all to get in...I just couldn't bend my leg or sit normally for two days.  When they took the line out on Tuesday...I found out why.  It was like 7 inches long going through my vein!

Jodi really didn't push me in the wheelchair....this was just a fun picture.  But I did have to be pushed since I was on some drugs after getting my CVC line in
After my line was in, we had a little time to wait.  So Mom went to get us Chick-fil-A.  My appointment was at 1 (Jodi and Dad went back to the apartment) but of course I didn't get hooked up until 3:30..there is a lot of waiting at MD Anderson.  I got all hooked up and was finally comfortable.  I had my own little tv and was set.  I couldn't feel anything from the procedure.  Then about 30 minutes into it, my face was really tingly and my fingers.  She said I needed more calcium, so she gave me some and said I would be fine.  Well, I was tingly the entire time, which was fine, just weird!  Before we got started, i asked my nurse what happens if I get nauseous.  I told her I did when I gave platelets and this procedure is a lot like giving platelets...just longer. (each person donating stem cells gets your own nurse.  You are their only patient, so she was at my bed the whole time).  She said that wouldn't never does.  Well..guess happened! I told her I didn't feel good and within seconds I was sick.  Then about 30 minutes later, I was sick again!  She gave me medicine then :)  Once that was over...I only had about 20 minutes left to donate...yay :)  The only thing is, they do not know if you have donated enough until the next morning, I had to donate 4 million cells, so I was unsure at this time if I had to do this again on Tuesday.  

My stem cells
We finished up around 6:30 and went home for supper.  Well they had supper, I  had two bites of grits and laid on the couch.  Jodi gave me a wonderful shirt that said "I donated stem cells to save my sisters life" and a super sweet card (that I had to reread on Tuesday bc I had no idea what it said..) 

We went back on Tuesday morning to find out if I donated enough.  I walked it (they remembered my since I was so sick haha) and they you were close!  I donated 3.94 million stem cells (I went in knowing that 40% of people have to donate two days) and they had to check with the doctor to see if that was enough.  A while later she said it was.  I was so excited I wanted to hug her, but then I got nervous and double checked that there would be enough for Jodi :)   So I was done....Mom and I headed over to get the CVC line out.  It wasn't bad, the only thing that I felt was taking the stitches out.  The crazy thing was, my nurse held pressure on the spot for 10 minutes and then I had to lay with a 10 pound sack on it for an hour.  This is the largest vein and they had to be extra sure it had stopped bleeding!

That night we went to Cavender's Boots and Jodi bought me these!!

I picked these out the first time I was in Houston...I love them.  I was certainly not expecting her to buy me those!  Dad said these boots are worth 3.94 million stem cells!

I was able to hang out with my family for a couple days before heading back to SC on Thursday/Friday.  We went back to Rudy's the night before I left and it was so yummy :)

Wow...this is a long post!  That was my trip to Houston.  Jodi goes to the hospital today for a month.  She starts chemo tomorrow I think and will have her transplant next Monday, August 1...her re-birthday!  Please keep the prayers coming for her.  This next month isn't going to be fun for her!