Monday, February 28, 2011

Fun visit

We enjoyed our visit to the doctor today. The doctor was in, and so was Anne. We also had the nurse that did all of Terry's Rituxan treatments in Wenatchee helping in ML today, so that was fun for her to be the one drawing Terry's blood today - a nice surprise. Everyone was pleasant and happy to see Terry. We also saw some neighbor's (whom I better not name, due to patient privacy) that seemed to have had a pleasant visit as well.

The counts were pretty much as we expected, except for the potassium count - it is too low, so he has to take some potassium this week.

WBC = 3.3 (L)
RBC = 2.97 (L)
Platelets = 84 (L) but "maintaining"
Neutrophils = 1.9

It won't be hard to compare to last week, since I only have one short post between them. So, scroll down a bit to see last weeks results if you wish.

We welcome warmer days ahead!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Happy Day!

Happy Birthday Ellen!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

no doctor today, just blood draw

Our doctor is on vacation for the week so we were going to see Annie Anderson, but she got sick and had to go home this morning, so we just had our blood draw and waited for the results. These are the results:

WBC = 3.4 (L), down from 4.2 last week.
RBC = 2.98 (L), down from 3.01 last week.
Neutrophils = 1.9, down from 2.6 last week.
Platelets = 88 (L), up from 71 last week.
ALT = 125 (H), up from 97 (H) last week. :(
AST = 128 (H), up from 85 (H) last week. :(

As far as how Terry is feeling - he is not as energetic as he has been feeling, but that might change tomorrow. Things change so fast sometimes that I could be wrong by the time I click the publish button. :)

Monday, February 21, 2011

It's Official!

Chase received his official call to serve in the Nauvoo Brass Band, and is looking forward to it with great anticipation.
His service will begin May 7th and end August 16th.
At this point it looks like he will be set apart by his bishop there at college sometime when we go pick him up in April.
Many things are similar to a full-time mission, but there are some differences for this service mission. We'll be anxious to learn of them all.
He has learned that this is the only mission where parents can come visit without breaking any rules. YEAH! Now we just hope for good health so that it might be possible. Hopefully the results of this Rituxan treatment will take effect by then and the counts will all be good and the doctors will give permission. All this hoping might be a bit premature, but it is all so exciting!!!!
We are still working on his full-time mission papers. He hopes to have them completed and sent in so that he can receive that call while in Nauvoo. Maybe that is when we will try to make a trip to Nauvoo. It sounds great now, but we'll have to see when the time actually comes.

PS - this call came from Chase's stake president. His stake president is Steven B. McGary, and we think that is Chad McGary's uncle. Small world! I know I've said this or something like it before, but; We are grateful for good people everywhere.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Tender Mercies of The Lord

During our stay at Seattle we became acquainted with two couples that were patients at the same time we were. There were others that we enjoyed quick visits with, but these two couples caught our attention and tugged on our hearts. The only socializing we did while we were there was to smile, wave, say hi, and enjoy a few brief conversations while waiting for appointments. However, we did feel a love and concern for these two couples and enjoyed seeing and visiting with them on occasion. Even just seeing them across the room would bring us joy. We wanted to follow their progress and prayed for their recovery.

But we learned some sad news this week. The Lord had other plans for Robert Eugene Hawkins - recovery was not to be his. He died on January 28, at age 68, "from complications following a long battle with leukemia". We are saddened at this news, and found that we were more attached than we even realized. We do find some comfort in the fact that he is now free from pain and worldly sorrow, and he is surely happy. We find comfort knowing that our Savior's plan provides a way for families to be together forever and we pray for this to be the case for this family. We will continue to pray for Mary, his wife. She is a great and pleasant woman who always seemed to have a smile on her face. She informs us that she has great family and friends at her side supporting her along this new path and we know that the Lord will give her strength. For these things, we are grateful.

One way to combat sorrow is to talk about it, therefore I write this post. I also wanted to pay tribute in some small way to both couples who gave us comfort and joy during our stay in Seattle. We consider those small and simple moments (when we would see them, wave, say hi, or have short little visits in the waiting rooms) tender mercies from the Lord and we are grateful for them. We are truly glad that we had them and will continue to cherish them, forever! They are good people and surely the Lord is pleased with them.

So, to the Hawkins and Aguiar families we say, THANK YOU! Thank you for being the kind of people we enjoyed seeing and visiting with during those long months at SCCA. You brought joy to our hearts in simple and special ways.

To all who have touched our lives in small and simple ways - WE THANK YOU!

Tractors at work!

The tractors are in the field, and this year, one of them is Connor. He is pictured in the tractor in these photos.

The icky part of this is that they are putting manure water on the fields and that stinks like crazy. We will be glad when this job is done.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Happy Day!

Happy Birthday to Jill!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Rituxan Completed

Rituxan infusions are complete so we are playing that waiting game again. We asked today how long it might be until we would know if the Rituxan was helping. Doctor suggested it could be a few months. We would need to do a bone marrow biopsy to know for sure, and she doesn't want to do that too soon. We agree and suggested that maybe we just wait for our 1 year follow-up appointment at SCCA since it should be in a few months. We don't have that appointment yet, but transplant day was April 21 ... it's coming up. We are not in a place we thought we might be at this point, but we are still going forward, even if ever so slowly.

Labs today:
WBC = 4.2 (L)
RBC = 3.01 (L)
HCT = 31.3 (L)
Neutrophils = 2.6 (L)
Platelets = 71 (L)

The next two are numbers relating to the liver, and they are up slightly from last week, but still not as high as the weeks previous.
ALT = 97 (H)
AST = 70 (H)

It was a long day again. The kids had their chores done and all was well when we got home. BrittanyJo was even making a delicious dinner for us tonight. We are so lucky!

As for how Terry is really feeling right now ... well ... His words exactly, when I asked him on the way home were; "I'm fine!" Not surprising right! Quite familiar.
But if you ask me how he is feeling I would say something like this; "He is fine, but he looks very pale today and seems to be tired and worn out. He is still fighting a sinus infection and cough probably due to bronchitis. He is certainly happy that he feels as good as he does, but it is not one of his better days."
It's almost over though! On to new and better days ahead.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day!

"Let us always meet each other with a smile, for the smile is the beginning of love."

"Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing."

"If you want a love message to be heard, it has got to be sent out."

- Mother Teresa

Saturday, February 12, 2011

another reason to celebrate this day

It is strange to celebrate a completed harvest in February, but this year that is the case. Thomas and Terry harvested the last of the corn and are feeling good about it. It's been a constant concern for them and they are happy to be relieved of that concern. Thomas began the harvesting as days would permit, then the last couple weeks Terry has run the combine and Thomas ran the trucks. We all worried about Terry's health, but he seemed to do well. He was worn out and ready for bed each evening, but he was able to continue the next day. I think sometimes it's the fact that he is up and doing something that makes him feel good. Certainly getting his crop harvested makes him feel good. Though I think that, I also know that it is because of blessings from a loving Heavenly Father that he is able to do anything and everything that he does do. I know that Heavenly Father was also helping Thomas as he was a one man show for awhile.
Now, just around the corner is preparing the ground and planting the crop. We are praying for as successful of a beginning to planting as there was to the end of the harvest.
Anyone ready for another Thanksgiving dinner? We do give thanks that our corn is finally harvested. What a relief it is! It may have even turned out better than we thought! We do have much to be grateful for!

31 Years!

Today we celebrate 31 years!
Not just 31 years, but 9 children, 4 additional daughters, and 4 grandchildren. We love each one! Very Much!
There is more to come and we look forward to it. Another 31 years sounds least at this point it does. :)
I suppose in another 31 years we will more than double the number in our family. We will love each of those children too.
Whatever time we have left on earth will be great, but even greater will be our time in eternity. Our family was established 31 years ago today in the Idaho Falls temple, so eternity is in our plans for the future. Families can be together forever, through Heavenly Father's plan. We are so grateful for that plan, and are striving to be worthy of it. There is so much more to do! We are in it for the long haul, and lovin' it.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Blogging Strong!

This blog was created three years ago today, on February 11, 2008. The date doesn't mean much, in fact, some day I might forget when I started, but the information within is very important to us.

Blogging has become a big part of our lives and includes much of our history. It has been a fun way to keep a record of our events, and a great way to share our events with others, especially with the events of the past year (2010) and our family being separated for several months.

Just as we share news with others, we enjoy catching up on others news from their blogs. It's a great way to keep informed and updated. Thank you to those who do blog. We love to hear about your family.

Though we do not celebrate our first day of blogging, we do celebrate life and the experiences we are having. We celebrate family and friends. We celebrate faith, our Faith in Jesus Christ and in our loving Father in Heaven. We are so grateful for Them and for the blessings we receive from Them.

Thank you for caring about our family. We are grateful for you!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Rituxan 4 of 5

Today was another successful infusion day. He feels and looks a bit more drained today, but I'm blaming that on the cold/sinus infection he has and the lack of good sleep lately. Maybe he will feel better after a few days of antibiotic and some rest.

As for lab work, here are the results:
First # is today. [# in brackets is the normal range] last # is last week.
WBC = 3.9 (L) [4.5-11.0] 3.6 (L)
RBC = 3.05 (L) [4.5-5.90] 3.48 (L)
HCT = 31.9 (L) [41.0-53.0] 36.9 (L)
Neutrophils = 2.5 [1.8-7.8] 1.8
Platelets = 75 (L) [150-400] 68 (L)

The best news for the day was that the numbers they check to learn how his liver is doing were really changed. Those numbers have been quite high for quite some time now, and this is the lowest they have been in a very long time. We sure hope that continues, or even just staying as it is would be progress.
ALT = 82 (H) [17-63] 177 (H)
AST = 70 (H) [15-41] 147 (H)

We are certainly grateful for better numbers and good days!
It will be interesting to check the numbers again after all the Rituxan treatments to see how it has helped. I don't know how long it takes for it to do it's job, but we will be anxious to find out.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Happy Day!

Happy Birthday to Dennis!

Friday, February 4, 2011


BrittanyJo will be able to play basketball tonight!
She was happy to receive her doctor's release yesterday and practiced with the players after school. We are thankful that she didn't get hurt worse, and that she is recovering. Good health is really a bonus in life!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


Rituxan infusion went well today - even with the full dose. It was a long day though. We have been so glad that there was not reaction to it, and today is just the same. One thing he forgot was how his bones begin to ache so terribly a few days later. Late Sunday night was quite painful for him, but by Monday morning he was doing better. We have that to look forward to in a few days and I am hoping and praying that it is not more intense for him since he got over 4 times more today than he got for Thursday's dose. Thursday was twice what he got last Tuesday.

There is more good news though. The blood counts are all headed in a better direction. We are quite pleased with that. The doctor was too. She seemed quite happy and was so anxious to hear how Terry was feeling today. We could tell she had some good news.

The lab numbers are listed below - the first number is today's, the number in [brackets] is the normal range, and the last number is last week's count, just to show how he has improved..

WBC = 3.6(L) [4.5-11.0] 2.6(L)
RBC = 3.48 (L) [4.50-5.90] 3.06 (L)
Platelets = 68 (L) [150-400] 33 (L)
Neutrophils 1.8 [1.8-7.8] 1.5(L)

3 out of 4 of these counts are still low, but they are improving. We like improvement and we are grateful for it.