Sunday, November 30, 2008

Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving. We sure a lot to be thankful for with Hannah's latest clear MRI. She did really well with the iv this time for the contrast, but with about 10 minutes left to go, I looked in and saw her shaking and crying. We got her out and she said she was very hot. Her face was red and she was upset, but the tech didn't want to move her since she had only about 4 minutes left. If they moved her, they would have to repeat the entire scan, and she had already been in there for over an hour. She was crying that her head hurt and her stomach hurt, but she made it for the next 4 minutes, then we stripped her sweatshirt off, and she calmed right down.

So, our Thanksgiving started out with the Turkey Trot I mentioned earlier here. This is a 5K race and fun walk put on by our PTA to benefit the school scholarship fund, and this year, they also chose Hannah's Cans for Cancer as a recipient. The weather was good and the turnout was fantastic. Over 600 people participated. We all encouraged Dave to let it all out and run this year (usually he stays with us). He came in 21st overall, 4th in his division of 44-49 year olds. He was a very polite runner (not passing people at the end, not wanting to pass the lady that ran next to him in first place for the women), otherwise he may have won his division! Bad hip/back and all, he did great.

Hannah and I gave a brief speech about Cans for Cancer to the crowd then she pulled the tickets for all the raffle winners. I think that was the highlight of the day for her! We rushed home afterwards, heading to Pennsylvania to spend Thanksgiving with Dave's Aunt Rosemary. Unfortunately, she had come down with the flu, and we had to postpone our trip. With no plans for dinner, we headed out to find a place to eat. We were 4 hungry runners. We drove for 2 hours, through towns on the south fork and north fork to find nothing! I never knew that NO restaurants were open on Thanksgiving, not even McDonald's (not that we would have eaten there, but still!) We were the family without a Thanksgiving. We finally headed to the supermarket, they had one left over prepared turkey feast that someone didn't pick up, and they said we could have it! We came home and micro-waved everything and sat down for dinner. It wasn't the same as mom's, but we were happy to have found something.

We have been working on two special things for Christmas that I can now announce to everyone. This year the girls want to do two things to help kids with cancer from Hannah's Cans for Cancer program. First, we are adopting an oncology family this year from clinic. We have not been notified yet of the family, so we haven't started purchasing gifts for them yet. We are so excited about this, and hope to make Christmas very special for a family struggling with cancer who may need some extra help this year.

The other thing the girls want to do is visit the 4th floor pediatric oncology floor at Schneider Children's hospital, where Hannah spent her time when inpatient. The plan is that Dave will dress up as Santa, I will be Mrs. Clause, and they will both be elves. Yes, you can all stop laughing now, it should be quite amusing. We will have boy and girl gifts for all ages and will travel room to room handing out gifts and candy to all the kids. We plan on leaving toys for the bone and stem cell unit children also, but we can't enter that area, as it is strictly quarantined. If any of you out there have any Santa/Mrs. Clause/elves costumes we can borrow for a day in December, please email me.

We had to get special permission from the hospital to be able to go up on the 4th floor. Usually, they do not allow donors to directly give the gifts, due to hospital and state regulations. Also, no child under 12 years old is typically allowed on the floor if they are not a patient or a sibling (I never knew this.) Since both of the girls are under age 12, they will not be allowed to actually enter the rooms, but the children can come out to the hall or the doorway. If that isn't possible, their parent or a Childlife helper can deliver the gifts.

We are very excited! There is a lot of work to do though. We have to select a date for delivery, and it has to be a weekday so we'll have to coordinate with school, Dave's work and the hospital. We already began purchasing some great gifts and got good deals at Radio Shack on toys that we think the kids will love! They were a big hit with Hannah in the store, that's for sure. She played and played with the robots and the remote control jeeps.

As you're probably thinking...these are very ambitious projects. I'm thinking the same thing..but I know we'll pull it off. The thought of bringing these kids a little bit of happiness at Christmas will keep us on track and rolling! With that in mind, we are announcing one more initiative 
Toy Drive

Yes, we are in need of toys, lots of toys and FAST! We will be delivering these toys to the hospital and the family sometime during the week before Christmas, which doesn't leave us a lot of time. We need boy and girl toys, of all ages, but mostly in the age range 6 years old and above. There are kids of all ages on the oncology floor, but not that many very young children. The children were most often around Hannah's age or older. If you are out and about shopping for Christmas, please help us help these kids, many of whom will be in the hospital on Christmas, instead of at home with their family, as they should be. It's difficult to be in the hospital, and especially difficult to be in the hospital on a holiday.

Please consider donating to Hannah's Cans for Cancer Toy Drive this year. If you do not have time to purchase a gift, and could drop off or send a donation instead, that would be appreciated also and will go directly to purchasing gifts for the children. Hannah designed a sign for the bin that will be out in our driveway beginning Monday, December 1st. Please drop off any unwrapped gifts to our Toy Drive box at our home, 1556 Grand Ave, Mattituck. If you would like us to come pick up at your house, we would be happy to, just send me an email or call (information on the side bar on the left of this page.)

I'm off to bed, my head is spinning!!


1 comment:

Mylese said...

Wow!!Those are ambitious projects! You guys are going to have the best Christmas ever! Thanks for being an inspiration.

The Reyes Family