Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Mom's Eulogy

Billie Sue Herring was born March 2, 1946, in Scurry County. A blessing to the home of W.P. “Bill” and Jimmie Herring of Dermott, she joined siblings Ray and Nelva in a life filled with fishing in the tank, reading Sunday Funnies, trips to the garden and a succession of dogs. At night, Nelva was charged with keeping her warm. She would burrow under the covers to the foot of the bed. “Billie Sue, what are you doing down there?” Nelva would ask. “I clean my toes out,” came the answer.

It’s often said that when you pass to over to the other side, and a headstone is erected at your grave, the dates of your birth and death don’t really matter. It’s what you do with the dash in between that really counts. While Sue’s time on Earth was relatively short, she made the most of her “dash.”

She attended school at Fluvanna, graduating in 1964. Being a Fluvanna Buffalo was quite the experience – school friends who became Friends for Life, stealing cotton bales from the gin and strategically placing them around town. During a party at Edith McKennah’s house, Sue managed to lock herself in a bathroom at the other end of the house. If you were lucky enough to spend any time at Mrs. McKennah’s house, you know that was a long ways from the party. Luckily, there was a phone in the bathroom, and Sue was able to get an operator to help rescue her.

Sue graduated from Lubbock Christian College in 1966 and Abilene Christian College in 1968 with a teaching degree. She taught school in Lubbock for several years.

She was blessed with three daughters, D’Lyn, M’Lys and A’Lise. As they remember their growing-up years, most of those memories involve cars. Whether it was the old blue Pontiac, a station wagon or the van they affectionately called the “beached whale,” she was always driving them somewhere. As a volunteer leader with the Borden County 4-H Club, she drove many a mile to stock shows, fashion shows, food shows…. anything 4-H had to offer. She rarely missed a basketball game or other activity, and there’s no telling how many miles could be attributed to orthodontist appointments.

Sue was a talented seamstress. She made most of the dresses, all of the formals and many of the other clothes the girls wore growing up. And of course, no outfit was complete without white eyelet lace or rick-rack.

In 2000, Sue added the title of “Granny” when Abbie Grayce was born. About that time, her daughters started hearing the name “Milton” more and more. She would often tell them he made her feel safe when he held her hands in his sturdy ones. On October 25, 2001, she married him. The whole family was thrilled – this Godly man knows how to drive a tractor. With Milton came a whole new slew of family -- Terry and Theresa (pronounced: Tressa) and their children Brantley and Abbey. Tobi and Gordon. And Todd. Emma and Raylee and Kaitlyn joined the crew in 2002.

Once a Granny, Sue was in her element. Showing off pictures and telling tales about the grandkids brought her so much joy. They all loved to pile in the pick-up and check the cows. She loved to watch soccer, baseball and softball games – rooting her grandkids on with the best of them. And no matter what they said or did, she was sure they were the smartest, most clever, most creative children that ever existed.

Sue and Milton loved to travel. Whether it was a trip to Ruidoso, an Alaskan cruise or a trip to Germany to visit Mike and Gudren, they were always ready for an adventure. Whether at home or abroad, much of their relationship centered around cooking and food – after all, in this family eating is an Olympic sport. Sue and Milton could always be counted on to provide a brisket, dressing, cobbler, or other dish whenever needed. And of course, no family gathering would have been complete without Sue’s famous pasta salad. While cooking brought so much pleasure, all would be put aside if the grandkids wanted to go check the cows.

Where Sue was concerned, taking care of things didn’t end at home. She was the secretary at Anderson & West C.P.A. in Snyder for 26 years and was secretary of the Snyder Ministerial Alliance. She was a board member of the Big Country Electric Co-op for several years and helped plan many Fluvanna Homecomings. She was a long-time member of the Fluvanna Church of Christ, seldom missing a church service. The faithful example she set for her children and others set about a chain reaction that will spread Christ’s love for years to come. Most recently, she was a member of the Gail Church of Christ.

When Jesus took Sue into his arms Saturday, July 21, she joined a whole host of loved ones gathered in Heaven. Her parents, Bill and Jimmie Herring, had preceded her in death and we know an army of Herrings, Watsons and Freemans welcomed her with open arms along with all the Fluvanna and Snyder crowd. While our hearts are breaking as we say good-bye, we know Sue is better now. We know she’s no longer in pain, that her suffering is over.

She is survived by her husband, Milton Stephens of Snyder; daughter and son-in-law, D’Lyn and John Biggs of Houston; daughter M’Lys Lloyd of Midland; daughter A’Lise Kern of Dallas; daughter and son-in-law Tobi and Gordon Daman of Midland; son Todd Stephens of Lueders; son and daughter-in-law Terry and Theresa Stephens of Snyder; brother Ray Herring of Fluvanna; sister Nelva Jones of Fluvanna; her step-mother, LaVerne Herring of Snyder and more nieces, nephews and “greats” than you could count.

Six grandchildren were not ready to lose their Granny and will miss her hugs and love. Abbie Grayce and Kaitlyn Biggs of Houston, Raylee and Emma Daman of Midland, and Brantley and Abbey Stephens of Snyder.

She loved each of you and under this list of survivors she would have wanted your name listed here, as well.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Funeral Service Details

Hello all,
We're still treading water around here.

Mom's service will be at 2:00 on Tuesday, at East Side Church of Christ in Snyder. Burial will be at the Fluvanna Cemetary. Visitation is from 6:00-7:00 p.m. Monday at Bell Cypert Seale in Snyder.

In lieu of flowers (I never imagined myself saying that), memorials can be made to the Breast Cancer 3-Day (www.the3day.org/dallas07/teamtiara ), the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life or the Fluvanna Cemetary Association.

Family Addresses are:
Milton Stephens, 8718 CR 2136, Snyder, TX 79549
John & D'Lyn Biggs, 15802 Applerock Trail, Cypress, TX 77433
M'Lys Lloyd, 2600 West Loop 250 North, Apt. 215, Midland, TX 79705
A'Lise Kern, 4849 Frankford Rd., #718, Dallas, TX 75287
Tobi & Gordon Daman, 3503 Claremont, Midland, TX 79707
Terry & Theresa Stephens, 2907 36th St., Snyder, TX 79549

Thanks for your love and prayers!
- d.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Mom's Gone

This morning while I typed my blog update, Mom slipped away. She was in dialysis -- she had to have it, but hadn't been able to tolerate it very well. Her blood pressure dropped and they lost her.

Biggs is on his way in. Tobi is taking M'Lys back to Midland to get what she needs and then on to Snyder. A'Lise is flying in, and I'll get her at the airport at about 4:00.

Yes, we're incredibly sad. But our Mom fought so bravely for so very long. Now that she's in Heaven, helping God run the show, we know she's not hurting any more. That was the hardest part -- seeing her hurt. So now there's no more of that.

Thanks for all your prayers.

Love you,
d.

Saturday

Hi all,
I apologize for going a couple of days between postings sometimes -- it just doesn't always work out to post every day.

Let's see.... The rodeo was great. Abbie and Max rode in the Grand Entry. She lost her stirrups at some point, but did great. Abbie, being the capitalist she is, was trying to figure out all the ways she could be involved in the rodeo -- and make money at it. She did the calf scramble and LOVED it. She wanted to know if there was a money prize for the best decorated horse in the Grand Entry. It was a hoot. She follows Uncle Max around like a puppy dog -- all nervous if she can't find him. She's very intent on keeping up with him.

Kaitlyn wasn't into the rodeo as much, but she'd already had her performance earlier in the day. When I drove up to Nelva's, Kait was in the front yard running through the sprinkler. Not a stitch of clothes on her. Something she'd never get to do in Houston, that's for sure. She was loving it!!!

After a couple of days of Grand Entry-riding and bread-baking at "The Other Granny's," they're headed to Aunt Donelle's today. She's been making plans for them -- they'd better watch out.

Mom is at dialysis this morning. If she can tolerate it, she needs 4 hours. But she's never gotten past about two. Treva and Mike are coming by today about noon with Redell. It'll be good to see them. Their son, Jordan, is one of our cousins in Iraq that we've been praying for. Mom and Treva have always had a special relationship -- I'm hoping she wakes up for them.

I tease her about giving me the silent treatment.

We had to take her rings off yesterday. That was hard. But her hands were getting so swollen. I'm going to try to find Milton a chain, so he can wear her wedding ring.

They did a scope Thursday night that just showed one ulcer that had a clot on it. Nothing that would cause this blood loss that she has had. They had to give her two units again last night. After they did the scope, they took out the tube that was in her nose because it appeared to be irritating her stomach -- when they did that, she threw up twice. Cleaning her up caused cold chills, and the anti-nausea medication caused her to be even more out of it. It's like the domino effect around here. One thing triggers 10 more.

We're basically where we were last weekend -- her blood pressure is low. The medicine for that causes her heart rate to race. Pretty much the same scene -- we just now have the blood loss added to the mix.

We really want to thank all of you for your comments and emails. We don't always have time to respond -- more often than not, we don't have that time at all. But we read every one. We appreciate those of you who show us that we will get through this -- the ones of you who have been where we are, made it through, and are able to minister to us from your experience. It's a club no one wants in.

The visits we have had help, too. True friends who will track you down in a sandwich shop when you aren't in the waiting room. Friends who'll leave you a note at dialysis with the one piece of information you really want to know -- did Mom recognize them and communicate with them. A treasured cousin / big sister who will take you to dinner in a REAL restaurant because you just need to be around "grown ups." Friends who just come to help you break the monotony -- even if it's just sitting with you and watching TV -- just so you don't have to do it alone.

We love you all and all the gifts of time, and love, and prayer that you bring us.

Much love,
d.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Grand Entry

I'm sitting here in Mom's kitchen -- the house is so empty and quiet. Daisy was sitting right by the front door when I drove up. On her chair -- just waiting for Mom & Milton to come home.

I stopped by to grab a couple of things on the way to Nelva's -- and use Mom's computer. I've gotten to be the master of bumming internet access wherever and whenever I can find it.

No real update on Mom. They're still trying to find out where she's losing all that blood. They had to give her two units last night. They're trying to wean her off the prednisone, so they can put her on the original steroids that they were using for her tumor. She's so sleepy. Sondra and Angela (used to be Evans) both came by today and she just really wouldn't acknowledge us. Milton has better luck getting her to open her eyes. He and Charlie Boaz got her to wake up a bit earlier today.

She still isn't able to tolerate an entire round of dialysis -- they had to take her off early again today because her blood pressure dropped too low. Her kidneys do seem to have a bit of function left -- so the infamous Dr. Rose is only ordering dialysis every other day.

They're trying hard to get her out of ICU. There are so many germs in there. All these random people come in bringing bajillions of germs with them -- then the nurses move around in that stew all day, spreading it around. They're afraid that if she's there much longer she'll get an even bigger infection that she can't fight.

I'm not sure what's next -- the charge nurse at nights has pretty much taken over Mom. She's awesome -- and really watches out for her. She said we needed to be thinking about where to go next -- whether it's around the clock care at home or going to long-term acute care.

THIS IS NOT WHAT WE SIGNED UP FOR!!!!!!!

Last night, Carla and I went to dinner, and brought dinner back for Milton. Then when he left, I got ready to settle in. Well, the waiting room just got busier and busier. At 10:00, people were showing up in their pajamas and brewing pots of coffee. Lisa, the charge nurse we think so much of, sent me back to the hotel, promising she'd call if ANYTHING happened. Milton came and got me, and I got a good night's sleep. It helped.

Nelva got the girls yesterday afternoon -- they were thrilled to be going to the "other Granny's" house. The rodeo starts tonight, and Abbie, Uncle Max and Simon are going to ride in the Grand Entry. Yes, Nelva knows how to get me out of Lubbock -- she's smart. How could I miss seeing Abs ride in her first Grand Entry??? I have always loved the Grand Entry -- every time I hear that music it brings back memories of the parade and then picnics in the park with all the Herrings, Joneses, Beavers, Belews.... anyone we could fit in. Grandad picking up fried chicken on the way. Someone always brought watermelon. And Aunt Opal's fried pies..... Mmmmmmm.......

I'd better get headed that way.

Thanks for all your prayers!

We love you!
- d.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Wednesday Update (I think this is Wednesday!)

Hi all,
We're still plugging away at the ICU thing. If you hear about a bar-room brawl type thing in the Lubbock ICU waiting room, don't worry. Things did get a bit tense in there a couple of nights ago, but I figured I could run faster than the other gal. So we're all good.

Mom is still hanging in there. Night before last, I asked our nurse what the best-case scenario is. She said that Mom would hang on like this for months. That doesn't sound "best" to me -- I'm just not ready to accept that.

She's still "in there." Last night, when Carla and I told her good-night, she said, "I love you." Carl and I barely made it to the door before we lost it all-together. This is just so hard -- I don't know how we can do this for months. Not the exhaustion thing -- I can handle that. It's the having your heart ripped out every time you walk in there that I'm handling too well.

M'Lys came back in today. I haven't seen her, but she's here somewhere. I'm at Brent & Paige's church right now -- bumming their computer. The girls and I are supposed to meet up with Granny Nelva sometime today, so they can go home with her. Uncle Max had better watch out -- Abbie's already making plans for Simon. She's pretty sure Simon is her horse -- and just on loan to Max when she's not there.

They're still trying to find out where all Mom's blood is going -- there's some talk of doing a scope. Her nutritionist says his mix of carbs & proteins seems to be working well. And the results from yesterday's CAT scans still aren't in.

That's the scoop for now -- wish I had more.

Love you all,
d.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Significant Progress!!!!

Things are much better here today. Mom is much more alert, and we've had a few actual conversations!!!! She has admitted that she does have a crush on Dr. Rose and likes being his "pet." It's great to be able to talk to her. They have just put a tube down her throat so they can do a CAT scan with barium tomorrow. There's bleeding going on somewhere, so they are trying to figure all that out. Yesterday, they said her blood loss was due to some auto-immune anemia thing, but Dr. Rose says that just doesn't add up. So they're trying to figure it all out.

Our girls are doing great -- they're with Brent and Paige this week. Paige has checked them into VBS. We were so upset when they left The Branch, but now it's such a blessing to have them here in Lubbock.

M'Lys has an interview for a teaching position in Midland, so she's gone back to do that tomorrow. Please pray for that as well. She needs a job there.

Thank you so much for all your prayers -- we serve a mighty God, and He's listening to you!!!
Much love,
d.

p.s. We have a contract pending on the house in McKinney!!! Yea God!!!!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

More of the same.....

Hi guys. I'm sitting here with M'Lys and A'Lise on a naugahyde couch in the waiting room. How many Naugas does it take to make a couch? No one seems to know around here, and I'm not sure anyone but me thinks that's funny.

Things here are tough. Mom's vital signs are bouncing around like ping-pong balls. She looks somewhat better today, but medically that doesn't seem to be the case. Her blood volume goes down quite a bit on occasion, and they aren't totally sure why -- ulcers? internal bleeding? No one seems to know for sure.

She's not as alert today as she was yesterday -- it's harder to get her to come out of the depths to get an answer. I had her listening to my IPod while ago -- Jim Brickman's piano music. I asked her if she wanted to listen to more -- she said, "yes." So we did.

We've decided that the much-talked about "Dr. Rose" must be her latest crush. (If I can have a crush on Craig Biggio, I guess she can have a crush on Dr. Rose. He is quite a "looker.") Anyway, she will answer him far more than any of the rest of us -- when he asked her if she was in pain, she said, "no," and immediately followed it with, "but I lie a lot."

We look for humor wherever we can find it. Nelva used the men's restroom all day on Friday -- she preferred it. Apparently it has a window -- she liked that.

We're hanging in there -- it's tough but your prayers mean the world to us. It's like Carla and I were talking about the other day. We've known that the dialysis route would be coming at some point. I guess I always thought that when we go there, we'd know it was time to really worry. But then, this tumor stuff came up in June. At that point, I thought once we got a game plan and knew what was going on, I'd sort it all out. And now we're here. It's all way too fast.

There is a new tumor or something near the one on her skull -- they aren't sure what it is. The morphine helps alleviate any pain, so she's comfortable. The ICU nurses are amazing -- they just let us in whenever we want, for however we need to be there.

I'm going to sign off for now -- We love you all.

- d.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Saturday afternoon

Since D'Lyn is with her mom in Lubbock, she has asked me to be her guest "blogger" and post the most recent information about Sue. I am John's mom, Jacquie Biggs, and will attempt to share the ever changing situation of Sue's health.
The doctors still have her on dialysis everyday, but other complications have developed. Sue's heart rate is jumping all over the place (over 200 at one point) while her blood pressure is extrememly low. She is in considerable pain, but they are giving her morphine to keep her as comfortable as possible. Sue is extremely weak -- almost "inert" says D'Lyn.
All of the family is in Lubbock or on the way. John is flying out at 5:00 pm. this afternoon.
Not good news at this point. Please continue to pray for Sue, D'lyn, and all the family. They all love Sue so very much. D'Lyn appreciates your emails and blog comments, so keep those coming.

Friday, July 13, 2007

ICU Waiting rooms -- not exactly the Taj Mahal

A'Lise and I made it to Lubbock okay. The girls are at Carla's dodging the rattlesnakes. Mom is critical right now - according to the doctor, her bloodwork is a train wreck. Her creatnine level this morning was 8-something -- up from 4.3 last weekend. She's out of it -- will wake up for a couple of words but that's it. They started dialysis this afternoon. She's on supplemental oxygen, but not a vent. Her lungs are clear, so that's good.

One good thing, is that they will be able to do the contrast MRI now. So maybe we can find out what this is that she's fighting as far as this tumor goes.

A'Lise and M'Lys have gotten a hotel room, and we're sending Milton back to his hotel for a good night's rest. I'm hijacking a hotel pillow and will hang out with Mom tonight. I can't sleep in her cubby with her, but I'll be as close as they'll let me.

Thanks for your prayers.

Please pray for us.

Mom is in the emergency room. Her kidneys have shut down, and they're asking M'Lys and Milton about a ventilator. The girls and I are headed home.

Please pray for all of us.
- d.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Home, Sweet Home.....

Well, news around here -- we have an offer on our house in McKinney. And it showed again twice today (Amber Buie rocks!) Hopefully we can get out of this two-home ownership season of our lives pretty soon.

M'Lys is at Mom's again. She went with them to Lubbock for radiation today and said she thought that went well. But Mom is extremely weak. They gave her some medicine on the way home and it pretty much knocked her out. I wish I had some really great update to give you -- like she's back to her old self or the radiation is just doing a number on that tumor. But unfortunately that isn't the case. She has to do 28 treatments -- 2 down, 26 to go.

I've got the living room painted -- Biggs just got home from Salt Lake City / Chicago and LOVED it. Good thing -- I've stayed up till 2:00 a.m. the past two nights working on it!!!

Hope all is well with you and yours.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Painting, painting, painting....

The painting never ends. Not positive about the living room color -- will have to get back to you on that one.

Just talked to M&M. She's sounds tired -- but her voice sounded a bit stronger, I think. Milton said she woke up last night and felt good and talked and talked. But this morning it was back to being tired. She'd had half a sandwich, so that's good.

I've got a bunch of pictures up on my blog at www.yuwie.com/3daymom I'm having fun setting it up -- gives me a break from painting! I'll put more up on there this evening. In the meantime, I've got to work on the living room some more -- then the girls and I are going to Pa & Mimi's to swim.

Have a great day!
- d.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

What a Ride!

Okay. I'm going to eventually move my blog over to Yuwie.com. It's got more capabilities and is just plain cool. For a short time, I'll post dual blogs -- the same journal on each. But I have a lot more pictures over there on Yuwie. And hey -- I'm all about supporting my friends, right???

You can check out that blog at www.yuwie.com/3daymom.

You do not have to sign up to view my blog and get updates on life in the Biggs household. But it is free to sign up if you choose.

In the meantime, last night the girls and I went for a bike ride. They rode. I walked -- I needed to get in three miles on my 3-Day training schedule. Anway, we got in 2.77 -- would have been more but we had to come home early when Kait (in la-la land as always), veered off the path, down a hill and right straight into a retention pond. Completely soaked. She stunk. So we headed home after fishing her and her bike out of the water.

Mom had her first radiation treatment today. Milton said she did okay, but she's still very weak. I'm anxious to get up there in a couple of weeks and see for myself how things are.

Today I'm painting the living room. I'll let ya'll know how it turns out!
- d.

Monday, July 9, 2007

We're the proud owners of....

.... A receipt that says that someday we'll have new furniture! We spent our weekend shopping all over Houston and finally ended up with (eventually, I hope) a new kitchen table set and new living room furniture.

In the meantime, here are pictures of the dining room and guest bedroom. I still need to paint a wash in the art niche of the dining room, but I can't get to that until later this week. I do think this is my favorite room that I've ever painted -- well, this or the flip flop room in McKinney.









Mom went to Lubbock again today, thinking they were going to start radiation. But apparently, the new radiation place she went to requires a different mask than the one that was made last week. So they made that today, and she has her first appt. tomorrow at 1:30. Milton seems to think she's stronger today.

Abbie & Kait start swim lessons tomorrow.

We "tried out" another new church this week. We went to West Houston C of C, which is pretty close to our house. Our friends the Venettes go there, and we were happy to see a ton of people we know there, as well -- Darren & Karen Croom (from A&M), Troy & Tiffany Blackmon (A&M and Bammel connection) and some others. Seeing Amy (Fortenberry) Lippencott was a HUGE surprise -- we had no idea she and Spencer were in Houston. It was great to see her again.

But it's going to be really hard to find another place like The Branch. If you're lucky enough to be a part of that family, you should say a prayer of thanks every day -- we miss it (and you) all so much!

Ya'll have a great week!

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Saturday Evening

Just wanted to let ya'll know that Mom went home from the hospital today. M'Lys and A'Lise were both in Lubbock last night, and A'Lise stayed with her at the hospital. She fell yesterday, so had a really rough night last night. They discharged her today, but A'Lise said she just went limp when they were trying to get her in the house and fell again. They've since been to town and gotten her a wheelchair to use around the house. She did eat a good dinner, so that's something.

I'll update ya'll again tomorrow. Thanks for your prayers!
- d.

Friday, July 6, 2007

TGIF

Mom sounds better today. Her voice still isn't normal, but seems to have more strength behind it than it did yesterday. They'll wait to start radiation until Monday or so, which gives her a couple more days to get her strength up first. In the meantime, though, she isn't eating much. Food doesn't taste good to her.

Our niece Raylee is having her tonsils out today in Midland, so we're praying that goes well. She's pretty keen on the idea of eating lots of ice cream -- maybe she should send some Mom's way.

I'm painting the dining room today. Chocolate on bottom and a color that looks a lot like Mom's milk-chocolate fudge on top. There's a chair rail dividing the two. We'll see how it looks....

Ya'll have a great Friday.
- d.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Quick Note:

They didn't start radiation today, but they did make some kind of a mask for Mom at the radiation center. They'll start the treatments next week?

She's still incredibly weak, but they've taken her off the liquid diet and are giving her "real food" again.

Please know that as we're praying for Mom and Milton, we're including so many of you in our prayers as well -- Uncle Truitt who recently had another stroke and Uncle Jimmy whose cancer has returned. Prayers for M'Lys to find a job teaching in Midland or Odessa. Prayers for our precious friend Lynn Jones to recover from surgery and pneaumonia. For safety for Gary Lloyd and Jordan Boyd, our cousins in Iraq. Prayers for Mimi's back to heal quickly. And lots of prayers that our house in McKinney will sell soon! Miss Martin, we're going to add your health to our list!

On top of all those prayer requests, we have so many prayers of thanks -- for the family and friends that have been Jesus with "skin on" to us the last two weeks. We love all of you!

- The Biggs Bunch

The War Zone

Well, folks, Fairfield turned into a war zone last night. Without an organized neighborhood fireworks display this year, the dads took matters into their own hands and more than made up for it. I have never seen a fireworks display like the one we had last night. All around us, the entire subdivision was shooting off fireworks -- and we're not just talking about bottle rockets, either. It was awesome!!! Abbie was right in the thick of things setting off smoke bombs right and left. The show continued on some level until midnight.

In a war zone on a different level, Mom is extremely weak this morning. They can't seem to get her leveled out -- her protein and sugar are both really low. She says she can barely lift her arms, and that Milton has to help her sit up, move around, etc.

Please pray for them. For strength for both of them. I'm as worried about Milton as I am about Mother.

They're going to do her first radiation treatment today at 1:30. And they are going to go ahead and biopsy the pancreas in Lubbock. So they won't be coming down here in two weeks after all. This is a good thing. A trip to Houston in two weeks would just be interrupting her radiation treatments.

It sounds like that group at Covenant has decided to kind of embrace her situation and take action on it. That's a good thing. Until now, all the doctors have all seemed to be pretty hesitant to take action.

That's the update for this morning. I'll let ya'll know how things go today.

Happy 5th of July!
- d.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Happy 4th of July!!!

Mom is doing better today. They gave her some medicine last night to help her nausea and help her sleep, and it worked. She's on a liquid diet for now. (Biggs asked if that included beer. Yeah, right!) Hopefully they'll get everything straightened out in the next couple of days. They're also supposed to see an oncologist in Lubbock tomorrow. She sounded better this morning than she has in awhile -- so that's good!

We did the Fairfield parade this morning with about bajillion other kids. It was fun -- even if it rained the entire time! We were able to reconnect with Bret & Suzi Bruin (from Biggs' MCFA days) and are going to their house for burgers tonight. Biggs about bought out a fireworks stand, and I can't tell you how excited the girls are. Here are a few pictures from the parade!!!


Have a Great 4th!!!

- d.


Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Back in the Hospital Again....

Update: Mom is back in the hospital -- this time at Covenant. Things improved once she got into their ER, but they're going to keep her overnight just for grins. Nelva said their ER doc was good -- and trying to sort out all Mom's hospital-hopping. Hopefully while she's there they can get some progress made on setting her up for radiation as well.

She's still not feeling great -- she was better for awhile this afternoon but is back to feeling yucky again. They're going to check and see if she has pancreatitis (on top of everything else.) She had that a couple of years ago and was SO sick.

As always, I'll keep ya'll posted!

The guest room is all painted. Apparently when I ordered "Garden Green" the guy at Home Depot thought I said, "Fluvanna Cafe Green." It's pretty green. But I think it'll look good once it dries!

I had a lot of time to think and pray while I was painting today. I was thinking about all that rain we had last year at Addison fireworks. And we're sure going to miss the Plano 4th of July Parade crew tomorrow. Ya'll take care of our tree for us!

Love you all!

- d.

2006 4th of July Parade:

It wasn't me, it was the mower!

The great news is that the lawn mower is broken -- something about the drive mechanism and the wheels? This gives me great hope -- that this week when I mow it will be easier. I'll let you know....

I just talked to Mom. They had a really rough night last night. Lots of nausea. Lots of discomfort. She's probably headed to an emergency room this morning -- and is trying to decide between Snyder and Lubbock. I voted for Lubbock. She's scared. Please remember that as you pray today. Yesterday she did get some medicine for the thrush that has been a problem the last few days. So hopefully that will help on some level.

One of the difficult parts to me has been watching how much this has messed with Mom's joy of food. In the Herring / Lloyd / Jones bunch, eating is an Olympic sport, and Mom has always been on TEAM Fluvanna. Over the last couple of years, trying to hang onto her kidney function has really messed with what she can and can't eat. But now, with the glucose factor we have another issue. And the medications, thrush, etc. make it so that food doesn't even taste good to her. It's just been hard to watch.

Thanks for all the prayers you're continuing to send on her behalf. We are all humbled by kindnesses, the prayers, all of it. You are amazing.

I'm off to paint the guest room. It's going to be "garden green" -- if all goes well!
- d.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Two Days till the 4th of July!!!

I know that may sound like a no-brainer to some of you, but Abbie & Kait have told me at least 50 times today! We're all ready around here -- we've got plenty of decorations for their bikes for the big parade on Wednesday. Stay tuned for pictures!

Mom is pretty weak right now. She tires easily. Last night the dizziness was back full force -- maybe because they can't give her as much of the steroids when it isn't through an IV? They still haven't gotten in with an oncologist in Lubbock -- they're sending her treatment protocol to two. Hopefully one of them can do it. One of the doctors she's going to talk to was Terry Pepper's oncologist and is supposed to be really good.

Please pray specifically that she finds someone in Lubbock to follow the protocol set by MD Anderson. Otherwise, she and Milton will need to come to Houston for the treatments. She just wants to be home -- not in an apartment or hotel in the Medical Center.

As for the Biggs Bunch, we spent the weekend at the Creek trying out Pa's new boat! It's huge -- about 5 feet longer than the other one. I was nervous enough about pulling Biggs on skis when it was the old boat, and I'm not too sure about this one. It's so nice, though -- much easier to clean up at the end of the weekend -- and has great cushions!!! Pa, Biggs & Abbie fished Saturday evening but didn't catch anything. Kait and I went to the beach for awhile while they were fishing. We still had fish for dinner -- at the Krusty Pelican.

When we got home yesterday, I mowed the lawn. That 1/2 acre we had in McKinney was easy-breezy, lemon-squeezy compared to this St. Augustine yard down here. The grass is so thick!! It took me two hours just to mow it. I told Biggs we had four options: get a riding lawn mower, get a yard service, build a pool or just make the backyard one giant, concrete patio. It whipped me!!

That's the news for today. Please keep praying for Mom -- specifically for her energy level and for an oncologist in Lubbock. Thanks!