Monday, June 23, 2008

Relay For Life

On Friday, Anya and I were privileged to participate in Olathe, KS's annual "Relay for Life", sponsored by the American Cancer Society. She was honored as a "Cancer Survivor" and was given a free catered dinner for herself and a guest and was asked to walk with other survivors around the first lap. She was so proud to walk it by herself with her survivor friend that she met that night (see the third picture above). It was a very special night for both of us.

Sunday, June 8, 2008


We found a used wooden playset for the kids!!
Thank you to Jeff & Ken, two friends from our church, who helped Israel take it down, bring it to our house, and put everything back together. We couldn't have gotten one without you!

This playset is such a special blessing for our family; it something I have hoped for and prayed for since before we even left Ohio. The steriods cause Anya to have a sometimes insatiable appetite and to retain water, and this playset will give her plenty of opportunity to get exercise even when we aren't able to make it to a park. And it gives our family lots of fun times outside together! We have already spent much time outside.
One time when we were outside, Anya told me that her swingset reminded her of the Heidi movie. When I asked her to clarify, she said that it was like her mountains. If you've watched Heidi you'll know that the mountains were a place of hope and healing for Heidi and her cousin. It may seem dramatic, but yes, the swingset is our moutains!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

June Steriods

Last Friday, Anya returned to the clinic to receive her IV antibiotic and chemo. It was a special time for me (Anna) because it was the first time that I've been to the new clinic here in Kansas City. It was a much bigger clinic than the one in Toledo, with more nurses and doctors, and therefore much less of that "family" feeling that we had before. Made me miss the St. Vincent's Team! But everyone we came in contact with was very friendly and personable and I look forward to trying to build a stronger relationship with everyone at Childrens' Mercy.

This time around, Anya and I were in a private room with a tv and video games. Anya was able to request snacks and we had access to the toys in the play room. For the first hour or two, Anya and I just talked and watched TV - and even tried to play Nintendo Mario Brothers! :) But after a while, Anya became ansy so I visited the playroom and found "Guess Who", a game we played together when we lived at PawPaw & Grandma's house. If you know anything about playing games with Anya, you won't be surprised to know that she won both rounds.
Everything about this visit was routine, except that the nurses were having difficulty accessing Anya's port. They assumed that since she has had it for a year now, that it must be developing a film inside making it difficult for the fluids to flow. So they gave Anya some medication through her port called TPA to try and clear the film. Fortunately, it worked!

Of course, the monthly clinic visit signals the time of the month when Anya is on steriods for five days. She suffered the same usual side effects, and as always it is hard to see her have to deal with it all. But it seems like she was able to handle things a little better this time, praise the Lord. We always tell her, "Anya fight the steriods" and she is quite the little fighter.