Friday, June 12, 2009

Just a quick update...For those following me on here that are not on the DIS or my Facebook account.

First...feel free to friend me on Facebook. I have an AWESOME username and I am so excited about it! It is maroo! Just Feel free to friend me there.

Now, to a harder topic...

I am struggling this week to try to figure out exactly what to do for my friends. They are having such a hard time. What can I do to help? How much should I help before I lose myself in helping.

Lauren's sweet family...has been through so much.

Her grandmother - we call her "grandmother" - was a missionary in Nigeria. Her son was diagnosed with Type I diabetes and was so sick they had to come back to the States from the mission field. She was a teacher for many years. A great teacher. The kind they name parts of the school after when you retire.

She has her first grandchild, Lauren. Who is a delight, but has so many struggles. Lauren never really walked and spends her days in a wheelchair. But with the help of her parents and grandparents - she lives a very full and active life.

She has her second grandchild...who was adopted. Her daughter was not able to have a child, but was able to adopt a child at the age of 5. At the age of 9, that child was hit by a car - suffered a traumatic brain injury that has him significantly delayed to this day.

And this grandmother is so supportive of her fragile family. Of her children and grandchildren who are all so special. She helps whenever she can - despite painful arthritis. She has taken chemotherapy for the arthritis and continues to help her children and grandchildren in significant ways.

Then last week she is taken to the hospital in severe back pain. The diagnosis and treatment result in a spinal cord injury. She can't stand or walk. She can't feel her feet. Bowel and bladder control are possibly gone for good.

What is up with that?!?! Hasn't one family just had enough?

Anyway...I am asking those of you guys reading this to really pray for this family. To pray that we would find some extra help to take care of the grandkids and fill the big shoes left by a wonderful caring grandmother. Pray for grandmother...that they would be able to help her regain some of her movement and control again. Pray for her children, who are just hurting so bad right now. Thanks for praying!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

I DID IT!!!!!!!!! *insert dancing banana here!*

I am so excited! Actually...that is a lie. I am so TIRED!

But I did it!

The triathlon was this morning. I did the lake swim (250 meters), 10K bike (some nice hills!), and 3K run (well, walk!).

There were a lot of people there. They said there were 100 more people than they expected. It was a very nice day! But it made for very crowded bike corrals for the transitions, which slowed me down considerably.

The swim was pretty neat. I will post pics soon. But there was a beach area and a lake and we swam in 5 second intervals...but we all still ended up swimming together! Definitely different from swimming in the heated pool with my own lane.

The bike was very difficult for me. It was actually a nice hilly course, but I was hungry right before we started swim (not good!) and I was pretty low on "fuel" during the biking portion.

I eventually "ate" some hammer gel and got some calories in and finished the bike part strong.

Then to the "run"...I walked this. With my iPhone in my hand (don't tell!). The music was a lifesaver for me, because by this point, I was almost alone out there. The run portion was HARD...VERY hilly. I didn't even think we had hills like that in Jackson! It was intense. And it was actually a bit longer than 3K...there was a lot of space between the transition and walk and then the finish line that was not "part of the course"...

All things considered...I did it...finished! Learn some about what I should and should not eat. And will CERTAINLY post a better time next year!

GO ME!!!! :)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The Kitten

Lauren has been wanting a cat since...well, probably since she could talk. She has begged. She has pleaded. She has said things like, "But Mom! I can't actually PLAY with Scruffy (their dog)." "I just want something that can sit in my lap!" She has even played the, "But I work so HARD!" card...which usually gets Lisa's attention. Because Lauren DOES work very, very hard and deserves just about anything we can give her.

But...a cat has always been illusive.

Until now. I am not sure who hypnotized Lisa. Or who took her place for a few minutes? Maybe she took some sort of medication? Maybe Lauren just caught her in a very vulnerable moment. Who knows? But Lisa said YES!

Lauren's assistant at school (who is also named Lisa!) had some kittens. Ok, ok...LISA didn't have the kittens. Her cat had some kittens! And Lisa offered one to Lauren. Lauren gets her pick!

The cool thing about these kittens - is that they were born on Lauren's birthday! They also all have "chest straps." Let me explain. When Lauren is in her wheelchair, she can't stay upright without a strap that goes across her chest. So she has a chest strap that she "wears" pretty much all of the time. Well, these kittens all have "stripes" on their bellies...just like Lauren when she is in her chair! Of course, here she is actually sitting on the couch.

We took Lauren out of her chair and set her on the couch with a blanket and this sweet kitten crawled up in her lap. That sweet kitten has found a home!

Lauren gets to take it home after we return from a church trip in Chicago (more on that later).

Is that not the sweetest face you have ever seen?!?

In other triathlon is this weekend! I am getting all of my stuff together and planning a long bike ride and walk tomorrow to help get ready, too!!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Happy Birthday Lauren!!

For those of you guys that don't know me - let me introduce you to Lauren.

Lauren is now 16 years old. She has cerebral palsy and I have been working with her for the past couple of years now. She sparked my love for Disney World last year when I was able to join her family on her Make a Wish trip to Walt Disney World!

We celebrated Lauren's 16th birthday earlier this month. We punctuated our celebration for this precious teenager with a party fit for a celebrity!

I just wanted to share some pictures with you guys from this fun party!

The theme was Hollywood...Here are some of the decorations...

Lauren all dressed up! Muffin was just along for the ride!

Lauren had a great time dancing with her friends.

I just wanted to share those with you guys. I have posted these to the DISboards already, but for my Team Voice friends - I wanted to introduce you to Lauren and share some pictures with ya!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Practice

Before I get to my actual blog entry, I must introduce someone to you guys...

This is Muffin. She doesn't normally wear "clothes"...but she got dressed up to go to a party! I will post pictures from that party in another update...

But for Muffin!

Now, to the big news...I DID IT!!!!

This morning I went to the gym with a friend and was able to complete the following...

8 miles on the bike - followed by...
2.1 miles on a walking trail - followed by...
250 meter swim in the pool!

So...I did it! I can do all of those in one I should have no trouble finishing the triathlon!

Of course, we will swim first on the big day, but I didn't think the gym would appreciate us running around the gym soaking wet.

Now, my timing was not great. We had a lot of transition issues because we had to walk outside, down 2 flights of stairs, and over to the walking trail to do the 2.1 mile walk - so that took extra time. I also had to stop and take a quick restroom break.

So...regardless of my final "time" I will be able to finish! :)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Try the Tri!

Hello folks!

Rae, Thank you so much for posting! :)

You asked about Triathlon training...and I am glad you did...because you got me off my rear end to really think about it.

Let's just be honest - shall we! I am way off the path for training for the triathlon. I have a kidney stone trying to pass, which doesn't always bother me, but certainly has me not feeling well. So my training schedule is all off. I had lost 18 pounds and now I am back to a net loss of 13...Ruh! No one to blame but me!

I have done a triathlon before. The picture above is of me (in the orange) at my first triathlon! Let's not tell Lisa (in the middle) that I posted this, ok? Rick, her husband, is on her right side!

The last time I competed in a triathlon I was ready. I didn't win. I was even in the big people division. But I didn't come in last, either!

The Triathlon is May 16th. Which gives me three more weeks to train for it. It is not a long triathlon - Just 250 meter swim, 10K bike and 3K run. Not too long. Less than a "sprint" honestly. But I am way out of shape.

Swimming is my strongest sport. I can swim a mile and not really miss a beat. I am not extremely fast, but I can swim a long time without stopping. The swim for this event is in a lake, which is new for me!

Biking is normally my favorite of the three, but I have not even been on my bike (road bike) all spring because Lisa has a broken leg. I actually store my bike at their house and we go on 16 mile rides often...but we have not since she has been injured.

The running. Walking, honestly. Is the very hard part for me. Not just because it is at the end. It would be hard at the beginning! I would rather swim last, honestly! I hate to run. I don't run. It just messes my knees and shins up. I do much better walking fast and actually go faster. However, I have been focusing on this part of my training as I am preparing myself for the half marathon in January. So, this may help my cause here!

Regardless of the fact that I am not really ready...I am going to do this triathlon. And try not to be embarrassed when I come in LAST. Dead last, I am afraid. But my good friends on the Disney boards have told me that a dead last finish is better than not finishing which is better than never starting! So...I am going to do it!

Thank you, Rae. For your encouragement today! Just asking about it made me realize that I have committed myself to this. And I need to get out there an DO IT!

So...tomorrow. Swim. It is time to get back in the pool!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Hi guys!

I am so excited! I have a reader! Thank you so much Rae, for reading and posting! :)

I have a double blog tonight since I missed last night.

First, I woke up yesterday morning and listened to a podcast as I was getting ready for work. A Disney Podcast, of course! And I was shocked...stunned...amazed - and as they said - turned 17 shades of red - when they actually read my email on the show! Thanks Bryan and Jonathan! ( for those of you tuning in that have no idea what I am talking about!)

Jakob, the Make a Wish child that was referred to in the show, is now in the hospital again and is quite sick - so please pray for him!

Tonight was a very cool night! Lauren turned 16 last week and she had her Sweet 16 birthday party tonight! I don't have pictures yet. But I was part of the paparazzi and took a LOT of pictures! They just are not loaded yet. She had a movie themed birthday party, complete with the red carpet and her friends all dressed in their celebrity best! Muffin even got to come! Lauren was beautiful and we all had a wonderful time! About 50 people came to her party, despite a rainy Saturday night here in Mississippi.

I am quite tired and am glad to have a morning "off" for my computer duties at the church tomorrow. I am actually going to be attending a service at a different church tomorrow with some old friends. I am looking forward to getting to spend some time with them. We might even get to talk a little Disney. Gotta love that!

As I get used to this blog stuff...I will add pictures and all of that jazz. :)

Thanks for reading and posting! More tomorrow! :)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Heart Broken...

My heart is hurting for a family I don't even know. Breaking for a child I have never met in a city that is unknown.

I know this...that their family loves God. They trust God. They love Him. And a mother who loves her son. A mother who already lost her husband. Her husband already lives in heaven and it seems as though her youngest son will be joining his earthly father and his heavenly Father at some point in the near future.

Her son is not in pain. He has cancer that has just gone too far. But he lived his life to the the very end. His family enjoyed some wonderful memories at GKTW. And now he is home. And will probably be eternally Home soon.

My heart breaks for that Momma. And his brothers and sister. Life is so hard for some incredible people.

This blog is going to be the real deal. And there you have it. The real deal.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

First Post!

So...If you are reading are getting in on the first floor, folks!

This is no pyramid scheme, though...So I don't suppose it really matters. But several of my friends have been asking me to start a blog. So here I am!! :)

I will update some more on this later. But for tonight...

Good Night, my friends, good night!