Friday, December 28, 2007

Quick Update!

Hi all!!
This is gonna be quick -- we leave for our cruise Sunday morning. M'Lys and A'Lise are coming in today. Dad, our deer that's been processed in Hamilton, and Kathy get here tomorrow. The cleaning lady never showed today. I'm not packed. You get the idea!!!

Just a couple of quick praises / prayer requests: My friend Stephanie is back in the hospital because her white blood cells bottomed out. They can't give her the Neupogen to bring them back up because of the "Sweet Syndrome" she developed. Please pray!!! Baby Addison is doing great. We could have told the nurses to expect that -- her Mama is one competitive chick when it comes to Nertz. AND she did the 3-Day 5 months pregnant!!! Finally, a HUGE praise -- Elise Goertz got home from the hospital on Christmas Eve. How cool is that???

Here are a few pix from our Christmas -- it's been a bit crazy!!!

Alan & Amber gave us a bunch of steaks from Omaha steaks. The girls aren't that into the steaks -- they just had fun "playing" with the dry ice that was in the ice chest!

Here are a couple of the doll outfits for the girls.



Christmas with the Stephens and Daman families...





Abbie's Gingerbread house from school....


M'Lys made these cute reindeer hats for the girls....


Ya'll have a wonderful holiday!!! I'll send pix from the cruise and more news as soon as I can!

Big Hugs,

d.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Prayers Needed for Baby Addison

Hello All,
If you don't know my friend Nichole, you're missing out. This woman has an incredible spirit. So many people say they can't do the 3-Day because they can't walk that far. Well, Nic did it 5 months pregnant!!

A week ago, she woke up in the middle of the night and was in labor. They have no idea what happened, but they had to do an emergency C-Section. Nichole, her family and Baby Addison could all use your prayers!

Thanks!
- d.

Hi Everyone,

First of all, I would like to thank all of you for all of your help and support. I am happy to say that Addison Elizabeth is doing absolutely amazing. She was born on the 13th weighing in at 1 lb 10 oz, and 13 " in length. They took her off the ventilator that same day, weening her onto something called a CPAP. They took her off of that yesterday, and she is down to just 1 liter of oxygen in her nose. She is breathing completely on her own. All of the doctors keep telling me that she is doing much better than any of them expected, considering the fact that she was 12 weeks early. Since we both lost a lot of blood in labor, she was given a blood transfusion. There is also some level 1 bleeding in her brain, which everyone tells me sounds much worse than it really is. Hopefully it will just be reabsorbed, but it's something that they will keep an eye on. They are feeding her now, 1 cc every hour, and she had her first big poop today. She had two tubes in, one in her umbilical vein, and one in her umbilical artery. The venous one came out today, and hopefully the arterial one will come out in the next couple of days. As soon as that happens I will be able to hold her! The staff at Plano Medical Center is really taking good care of her. Everyone tells us that she could start "acting her age" and we may have some set backs. So far though, it's only been progress. I really believe in the power of prayer, and I thank God for such great friends to pray with me! Thank you all again so much for everything!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

From my Aunt Teen....

MY FIRST CHRISTMAS IN HEAVEN

I see the countless Christmas trees around the world below,
With tiny lights like Heaven’s stars reflecting on the snow,
The sight is so spectacular; please wipe away that tear,
For I am spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this year.
I hear the many Christmas songs that people hold so dear,
But the sound of music cannot compare with this Christmas choir up here.
I have no words to tell you the joy their voices bring,
For it is beyond description to hear the angels sing.
I know how much you miss me; I see the pain inside your heart,
But I am not so far away, we really aren’t apart.
So be happy for me dear ones, you know I hold you dear,
And be glad I am spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this year.
I send you each a special gift from my heavenly home above,
I send you each a memory of my undying love.
After all love is a gift more precious than gold,
It was always most important in the stories that Jesus told.
Please love each other as the Father said to do,
For I cannot count the blessings or love He has for you.
So have a Merry Christmas and wipe away that tear,
Remember I am spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this year.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Merry Christmas from the Biggs Family!




We ate our blacked-eyed peas on New Year’s Day, but this year they didn’t work. In honor of Granny, who loved to hear news of our family more than just about anyone else, we give you….

Our Little Moments from 2007

As 2007 began, we were still trying to get unpacked and settled into the new home we’d built in McKinney. Sweet Sara Beckett joined our family February – May and introduced us to life with a 16-year-old girl in the house. Jake barked all night. D’Lyn and friends began building “Team Tiara” for the Breast Cancer 3-Day. Abbie played her first season of soccer. Biggs coached Abbie & Kait’s softball teams – the Red Hots and the Groovy Girls. “I’m half doe, half buck. I’m a duck!” As the drought ended in North Texas with the wettest spring ever, we contemplated the purchase of an ark. “I’m half Mommy, half Daddy. I’m a goose!” Abbie had mono. The girls spent hours riding bikes with the neighbor kids in front of our house. Jake barked all night. We discovered Rosati’s pizza. Mmmmm…. Kaitlyn never walks more than ten steps before she starts running. We found out we were moving to Houston. Biggs took the girls camping at Lake Ray Roberts while D’Lyn put offers on two houses in Houston. Abbie’s softball team rocked the coach pitch league. Jake barked all night. We moved to Houston on June 16. The playhouse made the trek, thanks to Uncle Alan, a big truck, a 4-wheeler, and moving a tree in our backyard. The tree still hasn’t recovered. On June 20, D’Lyn’s Mom was diagnosed with a tumor at the base of her skull. The next month was a blur of hospital stays and tests. We were blessed to have family and good friends “fill the gap” for us. The Sandusky, McCall and Jones families incorporated Abbie & Kait into their homes, families and churches, so D’Lyn could spend time with Granny. When Granny joined Jesus on July 21 she left a hole in our lives and hearts that can’t be filled. Through everything, God demonstrated compassion, love, and His amazing power to care for us even in the tiniest details. D’Lyn began writing again. Abbie rode in the Grand Entry at the Snyder Rodeo. We began meeting new friends in Houston and enjoyed re-connecting with dear friends from before. We hosted a debut party for High School Musical 2. Pa bought a big, new boat. Belly Flopper…. He’s in there! Jake barked all night. The girls swam a lot. Abbie started 1st grade at Keith Elementary – about ½ mile from our house. Kaitlyn started her last year of preschool at The Met – about 25 minutes from our house. Yikes! Our Opening Weekend dove hunt made the Dallas Morning News. Biggs finally got a riding lawn mower. Abbie was promoted to the GT program at school. Slug Bug! Kaitlyn’s new school is the “huggiest” place ever. Abbie is making a fortune off the tooth fairy! Jake barked all night. We had season tickets for Rice Football and a parking space with our name on it! Both girls played fall soccer, and Abbie turned into quite the goalie. Kaitlyn turned 5 and celebrated with a cookie decorating party. D’Lyn & Biggs celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary with a trip to Vail. We rented a Hummer, hiked up the mountain twice, rode mountain bikes and horses… and were very sore by the time our vacation was over! Jake barked all night. Biggs got an iPod for his birthday, so he’s cool now. From Abbie: “Kaitlyn, your piece of lasagna is the square piece because your head is kind of square.” Kaitlyn sings all the time -- and in tune! Grandpa Weldon booked a cruise, so he could take Aunt M’Lys, Aunt A’Lise and the Biggs Bunch on a vacation over the Christmas Holidays. Team Tiara raised over $38,000, contributing to the $6.5 million raised in the DFW Breast Cancer 3-Day. D’Lyn walked all 60 miles with no blisters. Biggs, Abbie & Kait made the trek to Dallas to surprise Mommy. Susan G. Komen for the Cure flew D’Lyn, Suzi Bruin and 15 new friends, AKA “The Talent,” to L.A. to shoot a TV commercial. A new HEB opened just up the road! Abbie turned 7 and got a hunting vest and cap for her birthday. A&M beat Texas. Kaitlyn learned to ride her bicycle without training wheels. Biggs got a deer. Kait’s learning to read. The other day, she came in and said, “Mom, what does W-I-I spell?

As you look back on your own little moments in 2007, we wish you the greatest of blessings!

Christmas Card Outtakes, Part 2....




Friday, December 14, 2007

Men Get Breast Cancer, too!!!

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071214/ap_on_he_me/male_breast_cancer

Check this out....

Okay. Ya'll HAVE to watch this. Especially the Christmas down in Africa part!


http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=2Fe11OlMiz8

Keep your damp hands, and your damp feet, off the chalkboard!!!!

This has been running through my head way too much in the last couple of weeks. I think it's because I'm knee-deep in making doll clothes for the girls for Christmas. I mean Knee-Deep. I'll post some pictures this weekend.

But you see, SJ was one of the people who helped teach me to sew. In fact, I was at her house doing 4-H sewing when Ronald Reagan was shot. Crazy huh? Anyway, she's been at the front of my mind a lot lately. So has her trademark admonition!!! (I was short -- those weren't my feet!!!)

I don't know what it is about BHS memories, but I couldn't get away from another one last night. We were at Biggs' company Christmas dinner at a rather fancy hotel down by Rice. One of the appetizers was grilled Quail. Well, this poor thing was laid out spread-eagle on top of some corn casserole patty. I'd never thought about how dead frogs and dead, spread-eagle quail had the same shape until last night. But I swear, it looked just like the frog that Kate Ph. stood up in Mr. C's Science class that time. Do ya'll remember that?

Oh, the memories....

Breast Cancer 3-Day Ad

The commercial isn't out yet, but the Full-Page, Running in Oprah Magazine is!!!!

I can't figure out how to load a file, but I know how to put a link on here.... http://www.knockknocktx.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/12/3day-283_oprah_lores_11-21-07-1.pdf It will take a little while to load -- it's huge.

My friend Stephanie is much better at all this than I am. While you're on her site, take a moment to pray for her. I'm praising God that she should be out of the hospital tomorrow!!!

The cool thing about the ad is knowing the back-story behind it. The big picture is of Cissa. Cissa lost her cousin this summer to a long fight with breast cancer.

Along the bottom.... Those chicks on the left? No idea.

The next picture is of Jewel -- an amazing woman in Dallas who has single-handedly been responsible for raising awareness of breast cancer among black women. There's no telling how many lives have been saved through her perserverence!!!

The mother and son are Stephanie and David. You've read Stephanie's story on my blog. Please pray for them. My running-buddy Suzi is in the background of that picture!!!

The picture on the far right is of Ed and Sherry. They live in Victoria and are just the sweetest, in-love couple you ever did see. Sherry is about 7 months past chemo. They rock!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

One in a Million, that's Me!

Saw my foot doctor again yesterday. I've had three weeks of these ultrasound treatments along with the anti-inflammatories, and it just hasn't really helped my foot. I'm beginning to get frustrated and a bit down about it. I need help!

Well.... He did a set of X-rays for the first time since August, and it seems I've done something that very few people do. I've fractured my bone spur. Don't ask me how. But the plantar fasciitis has caused a bone spur (we knew that), and the bone spur has a little bitty line across it on the X-ray, which supposedly illustrates a fracture.

What to do? They're doing an MRI later this week to get an idea of what's going on with the plantar fascia -- the tendon that runs the length of my foot. The problem is that if there is indeed a fracture on the bone spur, it won't ever heal itself. They'll need to do surgery to get it out of there.

YIKES. With the cruise coming up in 2 1/2 weeks, there's no way I can get it done before the end of the year. What a mess!

I do have to say, though, I'm very thankful they did the X-ray yesterday. It explains the continuous pain and the fact that nothing they've done so far has really worked.

I'll keep you posted!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Abbie's Letter to Santa

(As written.)

12-5-07

Dear Santa
I have ben a good girl this year. I think you are the luckieist poursun I ever hourd of! do your raindeer land very quitly I never her them land on the rofe? say hi to the riandeer for me. how have you ben this yaer? how is your wife? dos rudofs nows stil glow? how meny presints do you mack a yaer? how is your wife? I would like a Ipod and a fur real freind. have a vary Merry Chrismas love
Abbie Biggs

Dress Update / Prayer Request / Cookie Exchange

Okay, guys. Just a really quick entry to bring you up to speed on a couple of things.

First, please pray for the Biggs family, particularly for Jacquie. They are probably going to bring Jack home in the next couple of days. He's really not in good shape, not always lucid, etc. He will require 24-hour care. Pete and Jacquie have to decide if that will be nursing care (where they will try to help him get better) or hospice care (where they will just keep him comfortable.)

Second, I was wrong about the last dress I bought -- it wa 2002 when I bought one to wear to watch Rana Beth in the Miss America Pageant. (How could I have forgotten that trip???)

Finally, my cookie exchange is tomorrow -- 9:30 a.m. If you're in the area, please come -- you don't have to RSVP -- just come on. All are welcome!

Many Blessings,
d.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

You'd better sit down....

Are you sitting down?

I have BIG news!!!

Are you ready?

(Drumroll, please.)

I bought THREE dresses today!!!

Okay. Maybe that's not as big of news to you as it is me, but do you have any idea how long it's been since I've bought a dress??? 1998. That's right. As far as I know, the last time I bought a dress, it was for the MCFA Christmas party. Wow....

I've bought a lot of skirts, but no dresses. Until today. But today, the floodgates opened. Yeehaw!!!

I needed something to wear to Biggs' Christmas party. AND I needed dresses for the cruise Dad is taking us on during the Christmas holidays. I asked Biggs what he thought, and he said I should wear the "fishing lure" pants I always wear for dress-up occasions. Those words... "Always wear." YIKES.

So I saw a dress in an ad that I liked, and I just went and bought it and two others that were WAY on sale!!!

And I had to share it with you!!!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Three More Prayer Requests

I have three more prayer requests for ya'll.

The first is for Elise Goertz. Elise is a Kindergartner at Abbie's school, and they found out a couple of weeks ago that she has cancer again -- for the third time. The first time was in her bone marrow. The second in her spinal fluid. Now this time it's in her lungs. She's going to have to have another bone marrow transplant. Please pray for her and her precious family.

The second is for my new friend, Carrie Miller. Carrie is in the Sunday School class we just joined. She's 39 and has breast cancer. (Another young survivor.) Her lump was 1-inch when she found it, but chemo has shrunk it to 1/4 its original size. She has two more rounds of chemo, will have a lumpectomy after Christmas and then radiation.

The third prayer request is for Biggs' Grandpa Jack. He's had a rough year. He broke a hip, then cracked a vertebrae. Now, he's back in the hospital with breathing issues. Pray also for Jacquie & Pete as they weather this latest storm. Jack lives with them.

Thanks for your prayers!
- d.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Merry Tossmas!!

Check it out!

http://www.citizenlink.org/content/A000005834.cfm

We Need a Christmas Miracle!

I know there are some mighty prayer warriors who check this blog, and I'm asking you to pray for a Christmas Miracle for my friend Stephanie. Stephanie is a member of "The Talent." You can read more about her walk through breast cancer on her blog at: www.KnockKnockTX.com

In short, the "cocktail" of drugs they've been using to keep her cancer in check isn't working anymore -- and they're switching to a new protocol. I'm asking that you join me in praying that this works.

But more than that, I'm asking you pray for a Christmas miracle -- the kind that makes doctors scratch their heads. The kind that can't be explained away. The kind that gets Stephanie on Oprah -- not because "The Talent" should be on Oprah, but because she won't be able to tell her story without sharing how God orchestrated it. And in that story, God will be able to work through Stephanie to reach so many people who are hurting, and who need Him so badly.

I know this is a tall order, but we're talking about the maker of miracles. He created man, parted the seas, bestowed His Grace on us. Our all-powerful God can heal Stephanie.

Thanks for helping me storm the gates of Heaven on Stephanie's behalf.

Much love,
d.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Fat Momma's French Toast

Hello All!
I found this recipe last year and made it for Christmas morning. Our family LOVES it!!!

Beware: It can certainly turn you into One Fat Momma!!!

Holiday Hugs,
d.


Fat Momma's French Toast

From the kitchen of Dowell House c1870...a Bed & BreakfastMcKinney, Texas

Ingredients
1 stick margarine or butter
2 cups brown sugar
2 tablespoons corn syrup
1/2 to 3/4 cup pecans
Loaf of French Bread, cut in 1" slices
2 cups milk
5 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
cinnamon and granulated sugar to taste

Directions
In 13x8x2 baking dish, melt margarine or butter. (If you use a different dish, this recipe is a little unpredictable, but still works out ok.)
Add brown sugar and corn syrup to melted margarine and mix well in baking dish. Sprinkle pecans (chopped if you're cheap, or halved if you're rich) on sugar/butter mixture.
Spread each slice (at least 1" thick) of French Bread heavily with cream cheese and place with cream cheese side down, on sugar/butter/pecans mixture in baking dish.

Mix together milk, eggs, and vanilla. Pour over the bread in the dish. Sprinkle cinnamon and granulated sugar to taste on top.

Cover and refrigerate overnight. Next morning, bake in 375 degree oven for about 45-60 min until puffed and lightly browned. Remove from oven and cool slightly before serving. Dust lightly with confectioner's sugar and serve.

If you're really ambitious, (and careful) you can flip this over on a serving plate before dusting on the confectioner's sugar. Be careful of the hot syrup! I have also made this in individual ramekins and turned each over on a serving plate, which makes serving each person less messy (well, less messy at the table, anyway).
Good accompaniments are fruit (preferably something like grapefruit which is a nice counterpoint to the rich sweetness) and sausage, bratwurst, or bacon. Orange juice and coffee round out this breakfast. This dish is a filling main dish which can be served as an egg, bread and milk serving.
Variations include using maple syrup instead of corn syrup, and using 2 layers of bread in a deeper dish with the cream cheese layer and some type of fruit preserves (orange is good) in between the layers.

This breakfast is not for anyone on a serious diet or who has had a cholesterol warning from the doctor lately, but it is SINFULLY rich and comforting!

Friday, November 30, 2007

Honey Bars

Hi Ya'll,
This is one of my favorite recipes for Christmas. The first time I had them, it was back when Leiza Morales and I ran the S&S Senior Tea at A&M. Rene Stewart brought a batch to the tea, and we had a ton left over -- I think I ate them all in one sitting. I still have to stop myself from eating an entire batch in one sitting.

I make these each Christmas and think of Rene. She was one in a million.

Merry Christmas,
d.



Rene Stewart’s Honey Bars

2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. soda
1 ½ tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. salt
¾ cup oil
¼-1/3 cup honey
1 egg, beaten
1 cup chopped nuts

Combine and blend dry ingredients. Add oil and honey and mix. Add egg and nuts and mix. Pour into greased 10 x 15 jelly roll pan and pat into corners and sides. Bake at 350 for 18 minutes.

Icing:
1 cup powdered sugar
1 T. water
2 T. mayonnaise
1 tsp. vanilla

Spread mixture over bars while still warm. Let set until almost cool. Cut into squares.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Kate's in Hungary

If you know Kate Porter (fellow Borden County Coyote, class of '89), she's in Hungary. Check it out:

http://kateinhungary.blogspot.com/

Happy Birthday to Me!

Too many to report.

Cool new hot pink bicycle in the garage!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Post-Turkey Update

Howdy!
I apologize for not having written a "real" post in DAYS, but things have been very crazy around here the last few days. I spent all day Wednesday getting ready for Thanksgiving. Then, we had about 23 of Biggs' relatives here for the festivities. Then, the second they all left, I started decorating for Christmas.
Before I get to Christmas, here's a picture from Abbie's birthday -- #7!!!



We were supposed to go to the Creek this weekend for Abs' "official" birthday party, but the weather has just been horrible. So we stayed in Houston and got a lot done. Biggs did the lights on the front of the house while I did the trees and such on the inside. I'm not completely done, but I've just about got everything but my village done.

I really thought it was going to be hard to decorate this year. I braced myself for it to be all emotional and everything. But surprisingly it wasn't. It was just really, really sweet. We've all collected Christmas ornaments for forever and a day. And it was a very positive trip down memory lane for me. So many of my Christmas decorations are linked to Mom in some way or another, and I loved putting them up.


Here's our tree in the family room. Anthony & Cheryl -- note the Santa pix are on the mantel right where they belong!


Not all of my Christmas ornaments made the move from McKinney in one piece -- but check out the bows on the staircase that did really well!


I've never been big on theme trees, but Jacquie got a new tree last week and donated her old one to our dining room. I've been telling everyone it's my "Jesus tree." Doyce and I used to trade dove ornaments each year, so those are all on there, along with all the angel, nativity and heart ornaments in the house.


The china cabinet even got in the act. The top shelf has Biggs' grandmother's singing angels and Mom's "Noel" angels that she got from Grandma and Velma Lee. Growing up, we all had a great time turning them into the "Leon" angels from time to time. The china doll and blue willow tea set were Mom's as well. See? Sweet memories....



Finally, here is one fairly naked Christmas card tree. As you can see, we've yet to get any Christmas cards to hang on it. So ya'll better get busy!! Our cards will be out as soon as I get a picture, get it printed, order the cards, address the envelops and write and print the letters! Whew! Better get busy!!!

Merry Christmas!

- D'Lyn

Cookie Exchange!!!

Cinnamon, Sugar, Sprinkles Galore!!!

It’s time for our 8th Annual Cookie Exchange!

Saturday, December 8 9:30 a.m.

At the Home of D’Lyn Biggs
15802 Applerock Trail
Cypress, Texas 77433
Phone: 281-256-8067
Please RSVP if possible.

Here's the scoop: Bring at least 3 to 6 dozen cookies or pieces of homemade candy with each 1/2 dozen in a separate plastic bag. One bag of cookies will go into the "tasting party" and the others will go into the exchange. You'll go home with the number of cookies you brought -- minus 1/2 dozen. Now... We're talking homemade cookies or candy here. If the only kind you know how to make is chocolate chip, then by all means, bring those. But let's try to have a good variety!
Please feel free to bring your cuddly babies, moms, aunts, sisters, friends, neighbors etc. -- just no toddlers / kids who are old enough to climb our stairs!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Foot News

Okay. I think I'm getting old -- I'm reporting foot news, but here goes....

My heel was perfect all through the 3-Day -- something that can only be attributed to the power of prayer. But since the 3-Day it's gotten worse. I saw a new podiatrist on Monday. This one came highly recommended by another 3-Day walker and fellow "Talent," Sherry Taylor.

I have a crush on this new doctor. Not the same kind of crush I have on Craig Biggio. Not nearly as big a crush, and not because he's cute or anything like that.

I have a crush on him because he's going to fix my foot. And at this stage of the game, anyone who's positive about fixing things is my kind of doctor.

First, he started by flattering me -- not a bad place to start. He said I was too young and too small to have this problem. I AGREE!!!

That enormously high arch that I have is the trouble maker. No arch support or insole of any kind works for me. So... He taped it, did an ultrasound treatment and prescribed Lodine. All of this is geared at reducing the inflammation. It does feel much better.

But we all know 5 minutes of prayer can accomplish more than 5 weeks of treatment. So please be praying that this will work. So much of who I am is tied up in being active -- whether it's cooking or walking or shopping -- I don't ever sit. This has really been hard for me. Thanks for your prayers!!!

Love you,
d.

Pumpkin Dump Cake

This recipe is from one of the Titus women at my MOPS group. Prepare to eat yourself silly....


Pumpkin Dump Cake

15 oz. can pumpkin
4 eggs
1 1/2 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
2 tsp. cinnamon
12 oz. can evaporated milk
1 box yellow cake mix
1-2 sicks butter, melted

Mix pumpkin, eggs, sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon and milk together and put in 9 x 13" pan. Sprinkle dry cake mix on top of mixture. Pour butter on top of dry cake mix (a thin layer). Bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with Cool Whip.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Listen Up, Everyone!!!

Breast Cancer is Not Your Grandmother's Disease!!!

Got it?? More and more I'm hearing about young women -- younger than the "recommended mammogram age" -- who are being diagnosed with breast cancer. My friend Denise was 33 when she was diagnosed 3 years and 15 surgeries ago. I recently heard about a 19-year-old who has breast cancer. There's a Mom from Kaitlyn's preschool class who looks beautiful with her head covered by a scarf -- but not by choice. This is no fashion statement.

I've heard that they are going to lower the recommended age for your first Mammo because so many young women are fighting the disease. (Right now, the powers that be recommend that you have a baseline Mammo done between 35 and 39. Then, after 40 they recommend you have yearly mammograms.)

Hopefully everyone will get on the bandwagon soon. But even if that happens, you are (and will continue to be) your best defense. What should you do?

1. Self-Exams are your #1 line of defense. If you aren't sure how to do a self-exam, go to www.Komen.org and download the "how-to" card. Whether you prefer to Check your Chi-Chi's, Knead your Knockers, Squeeze your Oranges or whatever.... The point is you need to get very familiar with your breasts. They're yours, and God gave them to you for KEEPS. Whether they're little mosquito bites or big melons, they're perfect just like God made them. To keep them that way, you've got to get friendly with them!

2. Mammograms are of utmost importance. If you have a family history they're hugely important, but did you know a large percentage of the women who are diagnosed with breast cancer are not considered a high risk because they there's no breast cancer in their family trees??

I had my first Mammo at 35, and I had another one this year. No, it's not comfortable. But from what I understand, it's nowhere near as bad as chemo!

3. Be proactive!! ASK to have a mammogram. ASK to have an MRI if you think you need one. And please, please... If your doctor sees something suspicious and wants to "just watch it" awhile, please get a second opinion!

This is not a disease to play around with.

Big Hugs,
d.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Awesome T-Shirts!!

Hi Ya'll!

Okay. I just had to post a link to a dear friend's website. It's www.tshirtsbycaroline.com

Carol is a sweet friend from Plano. We first met her at the Jr. League's Neath the Wreath Christmas show in 2001 -- the weekend Abbie turned 1. Mom had come in for her birthday, so we decided to check out the show.

Mom loved Carol's shirts, and after that buying one each year became a family tradition. I've been trying all week to track her down (we both moved this summer), but no luck until tonight when I stumbled on her website. Her shirts are great. They hold up really well -- they're a great quality.

My girls have had a ton of "Carol" shirts -- I Love to Swim, I Love to Flip, Big Sister, Little Sister, Princess, Nativity, etc. She does all the artwork and production herself -- she rocks!!!

3-Day Registration "Bargain" Ends Tomorrow!!!

Don't forget!!! If you sign up for the 2008 Breast Cancer 3-Day by tomorrow (Thursday, 11/15), you save $35 on your registration!!!

I know some of you are thinking ... that's a whole year away. What if you decide to have a baby, move, go on vacation, etc?

Well, let me ask you this -- where's that a problem? Even if you don't get to walk for some unforeseen reason, you've still raised money to help stop breast cancer. You'll still be saving lives!

So get out there and sign up. Half of the crew positions are already filled, so if crewing is your dream you'd better get a move on!!!

http://08.the3day.org/goto/teamtiara

Enter the word "SPIRIT" as your discount code to save the $35!!!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Pumpkin Muffins

This was one of my Mom's favorite fall recipes -- however, I cut the amount of oil and substitute applesauce for part of it to make these better for our girls!

Pumpkin Muffins
2 cups sugar
3/4 cups applesauce
1/4 cup oil
4 whole eggs
1 1/2 cups pumpkin (one can)
2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla

Mix sugar, applesauce and oil together well. Add eggs, beat well. Add pumpkin. Mix. Sift flour, soda, salt and cinnamon together. Add flour mixture to batter. Add vanilla. Pour into muffin tins and bake 15 minutes. Cool and ice if desired.

Icing:
1 stick butter, at room temperature
1 pkg. (3 oz.) cream cheese, at room temperature
1 box powdered sugar
1 Tbl. vanilla

Mix butter, cream cheese, vanilla and sugar together. Beat well. Spread on tops of muffins.

Classic Pumpkin Pie

With Turkey Day just around the corner, I thought I'd share a couple of my favorite recipes!!!

Note: When making this pie, you'll want to use a deep dish crust -- and there's a strong chance you'll have pie filling left over to make a few mini pies for your kids!

Classic Pumpkin Pie

1 1/4 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar
1 Tbs. cornstarch
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg (at my house, that's "freshly grated by McCormick's" nutmeg)
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
2 cups pumpkin
3 eggs
1 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup milk
Prebaked and cooled deep-dish piecrust.

Preheat oven to 375.

In bowl, whisk together brown sugar, cornstarch, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves. Add pumpkin, eggs, cream and milk; whisk to combine.

Pour filling into prebaked piecrust; bake until center is set, 60-65 minutes, covering edges of crust with foil after 30 minutes if it browns too quickly. Transfer pie to wire rack; let cool completely, at least two hours before serving.

Serves 10.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

"It makes my hair smell good."

For the last week or so, I've been noticing that Kait's hair just didn't feel "right." I couldn't really figure it out, but I've recently started letting her wash her own hair and just figured she wasn't getting it rinsed well.

Then yesterday, while hugging her, I noticed her hair smelled really good. And I commented on it.

This morning, Biggs discovered her beauty secret.

Apparently, Kait has become enamoured with the scent of Wal-Mart's grape hand soap, so much so that she wanted that scent to follow her all day long. So she's been squirting it on her hairbrush before she combs her hair in the morning.

I LOVE how her 5-year-old brain works!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

A Blessing from one of God's Great Gifts

If you know my cousin Carla, you know that she's one of God's great gifts to this Earth. She has an incredible voice, a giving spirit and has been my mentor for longer than I can remember. She's one of my most cherished friends. She sent me this, and it's just too precious for me to keep to myself.

Carl, I love you.

To: D'Lyn Biggs

I, Carla Sandusky, being of sort of sound mind and heavenly body, do hereby officially lease you 50% of all calling rights and daughterly privileges for the rest of this earthly address for my one said mother, also known as "Aunt Nelva" to certain parties. These are anytime minutes and privileges, renewable by simply bragging on her bread. Someone will always answer, though intelligible, useful responses are not always guaranteed. The satisfaction of knowing someone who loves you is touching your same frequency is guaranteed. Service is comparable to On-Star...never consider yourself alone. You have the back-up you need 24-7; please, please just use it. It may not be exactly what you had, but this new plan will try to meet most of your needs, once you get used to it. Nothing is ever as good as the original version; thanks to God that He makes things perfect in the end.

Signed with a kiss this 8th day of November, 2007, with invisible, indelible ink. XOXOXOXO

Sunshine on My Shoulder

Just so you don't think I'm totally immersed in self-pity, I wanted to share a couple of things that are making me happy these days....

First, Team Tiara bought me a beautiful bracelet in celebration of the 3-Day. You can see a picture of one like it at www.alamobreastcancer.org/powerofpink.html

I love it and wear it on my left wrist with my Mom's bracelet. One is a remind of a woman who loved me very much. The other is a reminder of 16 women who love and share and are determined to make a difference.

Another thing that makes me happy -- Milton sent me a dozen pink roses to thank me for doing the Walk. Beautiful roses -- a pink ribbon bouquet. What girl doesn't love flowers?

Another thing that makes my happy -- Abbie's 7th birthday is tomorrow. This child, who is such a treasure and was a miracle from the start is going to be SEVEN! She doesn't want a traditional birthday party -- for her birthday party she just wants to go fishing at the Creek. But thanks to soccer and all that goes with it, we can't go this weekend or next. So we're going the weekend after Thanksgiving. We'll be there for the Boat Parade. How cool is that???

I can't let her actual birthday go by unnoticed. I've invited several of her little friends over for a playdate tomorrow and have ordered a cake to surprise her with. Biggs doesn't get back until late tomorrow, so we're going to wait to do a birthday dinner with Mimi and Pa on Saturday night. Abbie, being Abbie, wants Chinese -- so Chinese it is!!!

I. Can't. Call. My. Mom.

Imagine this being punctuated with sobs between each word, and you have me on Tuesday night. On the floor of my laundry room with the washer and dryer running, so my sweet, innocent children wouldn't hear me as they played upstairs.

A girl who doesn't know me all that well managed to touch on the one thing that's my biggest insecurity right now.

The details of what was said, and how, and what all was involved aren't important at all. She lost her Dad not that long ago and is grieving deeply. I'm still grieving deeply. We aren't completely rational 100% of the time.

But it brought to light another loss. I can't call my Mom.

From the time you're just a wee little one, who do you run to when you're hurt? Your Mom.

Then you grow up, and who do you call when you're hurt? Your Mom.

And when it seems the world has got your number, and you can't get anything right -- you call your Mom.

When I was in college and broke up with a boyfriend, I called my Mom.

When I was pregnant with Abbie, and the doctors told me they thought I'd lost her, I called my Mom.

Last spring, when a dear friend hurt me to the core, I called my Mom.

And she always had my back.

But now, I can't call my Mom.

In the span of a month this summer, we left our home and our friends, the church that we loved, our support group.... and lost my Mom. And I'm still reeling.

Spending two straight weekends immersed in the realities of breast cancer was carthartic, but incredibly raw at the same time. I've been incredibly blessed, but it still hurts.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

"The Talent" Does Laundry???

I have to say.... "The Talent" is having a hard time adjusting back to Mommy-hood. After being completely spoiled this weekend, doing laundry and dishes really aren't that high on my list.

I'd rather just sit here and continue to bask in the warm glow left from this weekend.

I walked yesterday -- six miles. And I think I cried for about 5.5 of them. It wasn't that I was sad -- although the sadness never really goes away. But it was just that all this emotion had to have somewhere to go.

But I've got to walk. Thanks to the crew in L.A., I managed to gain THREE pounds! Yikes! And then I come home to two plastic pumpkins of Halloween candy. How is it that my children don't like the "good" candy? Oh no.... They'll leave all the Reese's and Kit Kats and all that jazz for me -- they just want the Tootsie Roll Pops. So I've eaten more than my fair share of chocolate since I got home!

Please continue to pray for my new friends. For a healing miracle for my new friend Stephanie. For Sherry, Tina, Lois and Denise to remain cancer-free. For Denise's reconstruction to finally be successul. (She's had 15 surgeries since she was diagnosed three years ago at the age of 33.)For healing of the hearts of those of us who have lost our Moms: Jeaneanne, Amy, Mary and me.

And please pray for little Sophie as she has a brain tumor removed (for the second time) the week after Thanksgiving. Pray for peace and strength in their household and for quick and complete healing for Sophie.

Thanks!
- d.

Monday, November 5, 2007

"The Talent"

There's always room for Nertz!


Yes, I'm a dork -- had to have my picture taken with just about everyone! Here I am with Liza.



This guy is extremely important. He ran this little tent that was stocked with food all the time! AND what's more... He's my "2 degrees from Brad Pitt" guy. Last week he was on a movie set where he made Brad Pitt a tuna sandwich. Just. Like. Mine! (Would you believe he pulls down $125K a year catering on sets? Too cool!)

Jewel was a hoot! She kept us all laughing! Here she's teaching the "young uns" to line dance! (Yes, Suzi qualifies as a "young un.")



Megan & Amy. Amy lost her Mom while she was a sophomore at A&M. I loved what she had to say about the 3-Day. That it finally gave her a chance to stomp her foot and voice her opinion. Megan and Amy were also walking in honor of their mother-in-law, a survivor.

Three Aggies. Three young women who've lost their Moms to cancer. One club we're thrilled to be members of. The other we would have done anything to stay out of.



We met Rex in Dallas, and were thrilled to see him in L.A. Rex writes a lot of the material for Opening and Closing ceremonies and is responsible for a ton of the other stuff associated with 3-Day Marketing.

Outside the "Talent Lounge:" Here are Ed and Sherry -- with Jeneanne in the middle. Ed & Sherry are from Victoria, and Jeneanne is from San Diego. Jeneanne wasn't going to walk in the 3-Day this year, but after spending the weekend with us decided to sign up to do it. You go, girl!


Ed & Sherry pose with Chris the Driver -- he's not the one that got us lost!!!


Marilyn -- Oops -- Suzi climbs into Wardrobe & Makeup.


This is Cissa. She lost her cousin to breast cancer this summer. Cissa rocks. In her still portraits, she looks like she's about 12. She's precious. And she has three kids under the age of five. YIKES!


Suzi & I pose with Kait & Julie -- two of the other masterminds behind the 3-Day!!! Kait designed much of the logo wear and buttons that we all love!


This picture is for my Mom. She loved to take pictures of pretty skies out the windows of airplanes! This is on our flight home last night.

More pictures to come!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Still Here.....

We're still in L.A. but about to hop a plane home. I'll write as much as I can, then more tomorrow. I didn't post yesterday because, in all honesty, I was very disappointed in myself. Taping the commercial was far more difficult than I thought it would be. It was hard to be "real." I don't know why. Maybe it's that I felt all this pressure to be perfect for my Mom. Maybe it's because of the 12 hours of taping they're doing, only 60 seconds will be in the commercial. Maybe it's because I kept thinking how Mom would have totally dug it -- she would have wanted to know every last detail.

So it was hard. It felt canned. I was so disappointed, I asked to be brought back today -- even if they were going to give us the day off.

And they brought me back.

And in many ways I feel redeemed by that. Today was a completely different atmosphere. With the exception of a couple of people who went sight-seeing since they weren't shooting today, we were all there. And the energy was amazing.

(Yes, Biggs, it was AMAZING!)

As I've said earlier, each one of us who was there has a story. And I'm not really sure why Suzi and I were brought out here, but I think it was so we could be a part of Stephanie's story.



You see, dear, sweet, precious Stephanie has a layer of baby fuzz on her head where her hair is growing back in. We rubbed it for good luck. She was our little Buddha.

Stephanie had four hours of chemo on Thursday then flew out here Friday. That's four hours of drugs being pumped into her body to hold at bay the breast cancer that has invaded her. It's in her liver. A new drug for bone cancer was added on Thursday. Four drugs -- she had no idea what the combination was going to do to her physically.

Stephanie gets tired -- we knew she did. But she and her son David walked the walk in Dallas last week. And then they came out here to make a precious memory. And they did. And in the process they changed all our lives as well.

This morning we cheered and danced and celebrated to help keep Stephanie "in the mood" while she did still shots. Cheers like "Knead your Knockers" and "Polish your Apples" and "Check your Chi-Chi's" and "Squeeze your Oranges" and my all-time favorite.... "We must! We must! We must preserve our Busts!!!" (Judy Blume would love that, wouldn't she?)

That was the highlight of the weekend, I think. Being a part of something so precious.

This morning they did group still shots with Stephanie -- and I was so HONORED to be included in those. With tears running down my face.

When we were done, they pulled me back over to video and let me finish what I started yesterday. They all knew I wasn't happy with myself -- that somehow I felt I'd let my Mom down. And this is what I shared....

I think so much of what the 3-Day means to me was exemplified in this weekend. Suzi and I were talking -- why do we have such a connection with these people we just met? Or the ones we meet while we're on the walk? And I think it's because in many cases we've almost lost them -- and we didn't even know it. They've faced cancer -- in many cases multiple cancers -- and we never even knew. We've been blessed by them -- but we almost missed it.

They're calling us to get on the plane. So I've got to run. Pictures and more tomorrow.

Much love,
D'Lyn

Friday, November 2, 2007

We're here!!!

Well, I have to say we really don't know where "here" is. We were in this van and saw the oil derrick from Six Flags out the window. At that point, our driver took a wrong turn, took us about an hour out of the way, and then brought us right back to Six Flags and dropped us off at Embassy Suites. The highlight? Bob's Big Boy -- good thing since we were all hungry. Got our pictures taken with Bob. Way cool.



Anyway, we're here safe.... Ensconced in the Embassy Suites and looking for something to do. You could put about 10 people in our shower -- it's that big -- but it really doesn't sound like a plan. Happy Hour downstairs at some point. Nah.... We'll find something. Oh, and get this. In the morning, they're going to send us a fax to let us know what time we need to be downstairs. This whole fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants trip would do Biggs in. Luckily, I'm not a planner!!!

Note: Friday night a group of us ended up eating Italian. Mmmmmm.....


Hugs,
d.

Hollywood Bound!!!!

You should see us -- I wish I could post pictures! That'll have to wait, so I'll just try to paint word pictures for now. Suzi and I are at the airport in Houston. I HIGHLY recommend travelling with Komen! We're posted as "Elite" passengers. And while we don't have seats in the front of the bus on the way to L.A., we are in First Class on the way home!!! Our bags were marked "Priority" at check-in. How cool is that????

We're travelling with the PVC pipe "flagpole" that we used on the walk. They told us to bring everything -- so we did. And while you can't take a can of hairspray through security, you can take a 5-foot piece of 1/2" PVC. Go figure!!! We've had so much fun telling everyone where we're going and what we're doing. For Ben: Thanks so much for the tip about flatulation in the "puffer" machine. We're happy to have learned from your experience and thrilled that we didn't have to spend 3 hours in security!!! (That may have been too much info for some of you -- sorry!!!)

When we get there, we're supposed to board a van with Susan G. Komen on the side. Personally, I was hoping for a limo, but I guess we don't rank that much.

You know, to be on this trip you have to have a story. And it really sucks to have a story. But I take heart in the fact that there is no way I can tell my story without telling how God orchestrated it all. So I pray that I'm able to bring Him glory on this trip!

There are four Aggies on the trip -- I'll be in good company. One lost her Mom when she was a sophomore at A&M. 19. YIKES. There's a woman who did 4 hours of chemo yesterday. There's a 2-time breast cancer survivor. A man and his wife who walked the 60 miles hand in hand last weekend. A woman who lost a best friend. And me. And Suzi. I'm humbled and honored to be joining such an amazing group. And I can't wait to get to know them all!!!

More details later!

Biggs Hugs,
me.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

L.A. Hasn't Called....

But they emailed!!!!!!!!

"we would love it if you would come to LA, along with Suzie, to be in the commercial. You will get a call tomorrow, if you haven’t already, with more information. We really liked your story, especially the passing on of the your mom’s picture on the tiara. I really hope that you will be able to join us. It is going to be a remarkable weekend.

Kait"

Check out how she spells her name -- just like my Kait!!!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

To Register for the 2008 DFW 3-Day:

http://08.the3day.org/goto/teamtiara

Click on "Join our team."

You can either walk or crew -- it's up to you!

It once was lost, but now is found!

Two years ago this month, I made the trek with my Mom to MD Anderson for a follow-up visit with her oncologist, and also an appointment with her the nephrologist who was working with her. The appt. with the oncologist went great. The appt. with the nephrologist didn't. Her kidneys were failing faster than expected, and she needed to make some tough decisions concerning dialysis. We couldn't get a straight answer on a kidney transplant -- just that it would be several more years before she could get one because of the breast cancer and chances of reoccurrance.

We came home deflated, defeated. I was feeling very inadequate and wondering how on earth I came to be on deck for that appointment.

I got off the plane in Dallas and sent her on home to Lubbock. I drove directly to a little shop in Plano that I knew of and bought her a silver bangle bracelet I'd seen. It read, "Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength." I sent it to her immediately, and she wore it every day.

I wore it home from her funeral in July and every day since.

I wore it on the walk. I wore it as we passed that little shop on Friday and stopped to tell the owner its story.

And on Sunday morning, as we were packing up camp, I lost it. Couldn't find it anywhere. Worried that I'd thrown it out. Grieved that bracelet. Tried to tell myself that "things" aren't what mattered -- no success. Tried to convince myself that God would use it to bless someone else later -- no success.

I cried. And cried. And all I could talk about was the bracelet.

Sunday night, as soon as I could get to a computer I posted a message on the message board.

And this morning I got a call -- a woman named Susan had found my bracelet!!! And in His perfect way of taking care of every last detail, God made sure it was someone who could get it to me quickly. Out of the 3000 people at the 3-Day, this woman lives about 20 minutes from me in Houston.

Monday, October 29, 2007

I did it! 60 Miles! Not one Shuttle Bus! Not one Blister!!!!

Hello All!
Well, live-blogging from the 3-Day didn't work for some very good reasons, so I'm going to do a series of posts and back-date them. So.... You'll want to skip down and read Friday, then work your way up!!!

Happy Reading!!!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Day 3 -- Sunday

Here are the pictures from Day 3. Day 3 was really hard for me (see post above about the bracelet.) But it was a great day nonetheless. Read on....

These kids were so cute. Their T-shirts read, "Our Mommies walk because we can't hug our Grandma." I cried.



The signs people make are one of my favorite things about the 3-Day....











I have to say, it took me two trips by this sign to get what it meant. I never knew there was a name for "that."

One really neat thing that happened on Sunday... We passed one of the women that I'd given a tiara to on Saturday. I asked her how she and my Mom were doing. Her reply went something like this: Oh, I have to give you a hug! You've made me cry three times! Every time someone would ask me if I was doing okay, I'd say Yes. Sue's walking with me.
I cried. And I vowed to take at least 100 of those tiaras on the walk with me next year.

And the absolute best part of the day -- Biggs and the girls showed up to surprise me. Yep, that's right. One husband, 12 fellow walkers, two kids, two dear friends and I don't know who all else were able to keep a secret. It was just what I needed -- just when I needed it!



Check out the cap I wore on Day 3. There was a ribbon on it for each of my sponsors and for each of the people they asked me to walk for. That's what it looks like when you raise over $11,000 for breast cancer research and education!




This would be Suzi and Maxine.... While Maxine was Suzi's favorite, I have to say she stopped to love on just about every dog we passed. Next year I'm bringing her a bag of doggie treats to share!
We got to "grafitti" the Care Flight ambulance in thanks to the medical crew that worked so hard to keep everyone walking!
Here Suzi & I pose with Jenne Fromm, the 2007 3-Day Spokeswoman.

At White Rock Lake
Team Tiara at the Finish!!




Walking into Closing Ceremonies...



This walker's shirt said, "I miss my Mom today." I did, too!




At the end of the day, what really matters: Team Tiara raised over $35,000 and finished #15 in the rankings. BUT.... The DFW 3-Day raised $6.5 million!!! So many of you were a part of that! Thank you so very much for all your support!!!