Sunday, January 31, 2010

Our weekend

On Saturday I ran my 2nd half marathon! Yay, I'm so glad it's done! This particular run benefits local families fighting cancer. It's named after a little girl, London, who passed away 5 years ago during her treatment of Leukemia. For more info on her, click here.

It was neat to be there for the opening ceremony and see the families and children that are continuing their fights with cancer. I knew a few of the kids and parents there and I am so glad to see the money that was earned for the race will be going towards the treatment of these kiddos.

During the run, there were pictures posted next to the mile markers of the kids currently fighting or those that have lost their battles with cancer with phrases like "Running is Easy, Cancer is Hard!" or "Keep going" or "Dont give up!" Pictures like this one of our Bree:
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(taken almost exactly 1 year ago)

Everytime I would pass a picture, I would get shivers & feel touched by these sweet children. I even ended up crying while I ran because I would think back to when Bree was battling cancer and all the emotions that came with it. I also thought about Layla (see my post below). Seeing the pictures would also give me the motivation to "keep going" and finish the race.

I'm glad I did it and accomplished my goal. It felt good to run! Here's a few of the girls I trained with. (L to R: Amber, Collette & me)
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Here's a few other pictures of our weekend. I actually took this one last week because Gunner was cracking me up. He loves swords (go figure) and kept trying to put it through the belt loops on his pants. Instead, he figured this would suffice:

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The kids were having a blast in the bath together and I wanted to capture their sweet faces. I didnt get too many because they were tossing water everywhere and I feared for the life of my camera!
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Then, today we just relaxed as a family after church. We made cookies, had a yummy dinner and just hung out! I snapped a few pics of my favs!
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I promise Bree didn't stick her finger in a light socket, this girl's hair is just naturally fluffy! It's so wild & crazy, just like her! I wouldn't take her any other way!
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Until the next time....

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Saying Goodbye

Today I received some bad news. Bree's little friend Layla passed away this week. I don't have many details. The only thing I do know is that she passed away in her sleep.

We met Layla and her Mom, Nicole, back in April of last year. Bree had a bacterial infection in her line and we were in the hospital for our 5 day stay until she got better. While we were walking around the halls of our hospital room, we met a cute little girl with dark brown eyes and a beautiful bald head. She was very friendly and interested in Breezy. They shared the common bond of having the same cancer. With neuroblastoma, it's not that common to meet someone else because it is such a rare cancer. Layla showed us some of her scars and wanted to see some of Bree's too.

From then on, Nicole and I kept in contact. They weren't from the Phoenix area so they would travel down and stay at a Ronald McDonald house while Layla received chemotherapy. Whenever they came to town for treatments, we'd try to go visit them. Layla liked baby dolls just like Bree. They were cute friends, even though they were 5 years apart. Kindred spirits I guess! We visited Layla on her 6th birthday (which she spent at the hosptial) and gave her a bunch of toys to brighten her day.

She had been through so much. Nicole has been through so much as well. As a parent, it's so hard to watch your child suffer with a disease like cancer. I am at a loss for words at the moment. My heart hurts for this family because they watched Layla fight for so long. The part that gives me comfort is that she is now free from her little body that was sick for so long. She is now with a loving God that carried her and her family through their journey.

Goodbye sweet Layla. Until we meet again. We love you!

**If anyone would like to check her caring bridge site or inquire about funeral details, please leave a comment with an email and I will contact you. (I will delete the comment if you dont want your email shown) Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Thirty Something

Today is Justin's birthday! He's 33 and he's the love of my life. This man is kind, gentle & loving. He's fun and silly yet can be serious when he needs to be. He's a wonderful Daddy who loves our kids and takes the time to play with them, teach them life lessons and always teaching them about the gospel of Jesus Christ. He often listens to me ramble and is my own personal "counselor." (I've told him so many times that he'd be a great psychologist because he listens well and always has the greatest advice.) He's a strong, yet sensitive man and I love that about him. We've been through so much in our 10+ years together. I'm grateful I have him for eternity! Love ya babe, and Happy Birthday!