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4th Quarter Appointment

Greetings!  I'm happy to report that I had a CF appointment on Friday and all went well.  I'm actually down a pound and 1/2 which is exciting for me...the working out is making a difference - yay!  Have no fear, I still have plenty of meat on my bones ;)  My doctor had no concerns about the slight decrease in weight.  On a side note, I like the scale at my house better...its always 3-4 pounds lighter then the hospitals.

I had PFTs done...here are my results:

FVC - 97% (previous 101%)
FEV1 - 85% (previous 85%)
FEF25-75% - 62% (previous 47%)

So - pretty good!  My smaller airways (FEF25-75%) seem to have made some improvement.  Could be because I'm currently on Cayston.  On Friday I was Week 3, Day 3 of the 4 week cycle.

We talked about my last sputum culture which turned up some confusing results.  So, they want to redo the AFB Culture as there wasn't enough "stuff" to test from last go round.  Hopefully, all is OK with that.  So, I got to spit in a cup and hav…

Remote Hog

Do you ever find yourself sitting on the couch with your significant other while they have something on TV (that they aren't actively watching), but you're not allowed to change the channel?  Well, I find myself in that position as I type.  Will has something on (Grease Monkey or Gas Monkey...something of that nature on the Discovery channel) and is fiddling on his laptop.  Then, here I am just sitting here wanting to put ANYTHING else on...but when I ask for the remote, I get told "no, I'm watching this".  *&@#!?!?!  NO, YOU ARE NOT!!

Is it a guy thing?  I find myself in this predicament more times than I wish.  Granted, we do watch several shows together...usually his choice (Ax Men, Gold Rush, etc.) and not so much my choice (Bachelorette, Grey's Anatomy).  I can't blame him for not watching the Bachelor or Bachelorette...I don't think most guys enjoy those.  So, I record my shows and catch up on them during the week while he is at work or whe…

I'm still here...

I can't believe its been a week and a half since I've been on here...I'm not quite sure what I've been up to thats distracted me so much.  Let's see...

Will and I went to Atlanta the weekend of the 1st - we had a great time with some wonderful people...we say the Cirque Du Soleil show Totem.  It was amazing...those people make it look so easy!  I put up the Christmas decorations in the house...unfortunately, I was a bit destructive this year.  I broke a few of my favorite things in the process :(  I was about to throw in the towel and say bah humbug, but I didn't...and now just looking at the Christmas tree makes me happy.I started Cayston...all is going well with that.  I did struggle to remember it a few times and got behind schedule...which drives me nuts.  So, I've gotten myself caught up now.  I had a little Cayston-induced cough around day 3 of the cycle which unfortunately kept me awake one night (and Will too), but all is better.This weekend I had 3 …

More Thanks

Day 26:  I'm thankful to be able to sleep in!!  Me and pups enjoyed sleeping in after a long and fun weekend!

Day 27: I'm thankful for mom's cooking!  Will and I went to mom's for dinner tonight and boy do I miss her cooking.  Thankfully, some was sent home with me too :)

Day 28:  I'm thankful to celebrate my hubby's birthday today...I'm thankful for him everyday :)

Catching up!

Wow - so I missed a few day - oops!  I'll just sum these past few days up...I'm thankful for the awesome time I had in Indiana celebrating my brother & his new wife, Amanda.  Our travels went smoothly and we had great flights.  We celebrated Thanksgiving with my family and Amanda's while we were in Indiana.  The wedding went perfectly and the bride couldn't have been any more beautiful.


I'm so very thankful that my brother found an amazing woman that makes him happy.  I'm thankful that I now have another sister!!  I'm thankful for my family that joined in the wedding celebration this weekend.  I'm clearly very excited about the wedding :)

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend with their family & friends!

Days 14 - 16

Day 14:  I'm thankful for my special little buddy, Preston.  I've claimed him as my Godson and nephew :)  I love that little fellow like crazy and he can put a smile on my face like no other.  He's just about 3 1/2, and let me tell you that this age is a blast!  I've always been partial to the baby stage, but he's making the toddler stage so fun!  Granted, I don't live with him and get to avoid the occasional 3 year old melt-downs, but he's always been a very pleasant and personable little guy.  It seems like over night, but he just talks and talks...and I have no idea where he gets some of his stuff.  Will and I went to dinner this week with Matt, Brandy and Preston and we were talking about being boys and girls.  The conversation went something like this:

Me:  Preston, are you a boy or a girl?
Preston:  Boy!  (and of course he says it in the cutest way...he manages to turn a one-syllable word into two syllables - lol)
Me: What is Daddy?
Preston:  Boy!
Me:…

Days 12 & 13

Day 12:  I'm thankful that Will arrived home safely from his weekend away celebrating my brother's Bachelor Party!  I'm glad they all had a great time...the wedding will be here soon!!!

Day 13:  I'm thankful to be out of my funk.  I've been lazy the past week and have skipped a few workouts...I just didn't feel like going.  But, I got up today and went to the gym and got back in the swing of things.

Days 8 - 11

Catching up...

Day 8:  I'm thankful for my dermatologist appointment today.  I had a mole removed 2 weeks ago and got the stitches removed - yay!  Also, got the results and everything is fine with old mole :)

Day 9:  I'm thankful for getting to spend the day with my little brother.  He and I went to tour USCA's campus for a possible college choice for him.  Its crazy that I graduated from there 7 years ago, but I'm so glad he decided to visit my alma mater.  Not sure where he will end up, but I'm a proud big sis :)

Day 10:  I'm thankful for my bestest friend Brandy.  As always, she came to the rescue to let the pups out for me while I was gone for most of the day.  Its great to have a friend that you can always rely on, whether its letting the pups out or just letting me vent when I need it.  She's my partner in crime and I can't imagine what I'd do without her.

Day 11:  I'm thankful for my little sisters.  Today my oldest little sis, Corinne, t…

Day 7

I'm thankful for this chilly, wet day.  Yes...that is true!  I've got some potato soup on the stove and can't wait until Will gets home from work so we can cuddle up on the couch.  Well, I can cuddle up...I'm sure he'll be busy doing more work in his office.

3rd Quarter CF Appointment

Better late then never, but I had my quarterly CF appointment on October 27th.  It was a long day, but its just one of those things I have to do.  I went by myself as I couldn't recruit anyone to endure the long day with me, but I didn't mind.
My morning started at 10am at the blood lab...I of course had to fast for my glucose test :(  From there, I proceeded to Radiology for my chest x-ray for a 10:30am appointment.  Since the blood drawing went by so fast, I was at x-ray early and they were able to take me back early - woohoo!
On a funny note, the x-ray technician said I had a nice chest after the x-rays...lol.  I headed to the PFT lab for an 11am appointment.  Unfortunately, they were swamped so I didn't get to sneak in there early.  While I waited, I popped back in the blood lab for my 1 hour drawing of the glucose test.  After PFTs, I went for my bone density scan scheduled for noon.  With much surprise, I finished that early and headed over to get my last drawing fo…

Day 6

I'm thankful to live in a country where I have the right to vote!  So, I went out and did my civiv duty today :)


On another note...this time change has completely confused the pups.  They used to follow me around starting around 5pm until I fed them, but now its starting at 4pm - ahhh!

Days 2 - 5

Just doing some catching up...I've been out of town and unable to blog, but I've still been thinking of what I'm thankful for!

Day 2:  I'm thankful for my safe travels to Indiana.  I went to visit my brother and future sister-in-law for her Bachelorette weekend!

Day 3:  I'm thankful for the extra time I spent with Amanda (my future sister-in-law) celebrating her and the upcoming wedding!  We don't always get a lot of time with just the two of us, so it was special that we had some time together.

Day 4:  I'm thankful for my safe travels home!  It seemed like it took forever to get home, but I made it safely.  My wonderful husband picked me up at the airport, so that was a great welcome home.

Day 5:  I'm thankful for answered prayers.  I've had a very special prayer request and it was answered today...I'm overjoyed and beyond excited that we received the good news I was praying for.

Until tomorrow :)

CF Awareness

I had a pretty busy week last week that I've been meaning to write about, but just don't seem to sit down to do it.  So, here I sit in the kitchen on this slightly chilly afternoon, listening to the rumbling of my sweet bulldogs snoring...

I had the opportunity to speak to 2 different high schools here in South Carolina about Cystic Fibrosis.  The first one, Gilbert High School, invited me to speak on Tuesday evening to one of their student organizations, HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America).  HOSA has adopted the CF Foundation as their service project (for the next 2 years).  I went to college with one of the advisors (Hi, Sue Ellen!) and she invited me to speak to the group.  Will wasn't able to join me as planned that evening, so my faithful friend Brandy joined me for the special occasion.  I won't lie, I was nervous.  I was actually a little intimidated going to speak to a group of 30-40 teenagers.  But, I knew this was my opportunity to share about CF a…

A Month of Thanks

Just like last year, every day in November I will write about something I am thankful for.

Day 1:  I'm thankful that my family is OK after the wrath of Sandy.  New Jersey was hit pretty hard and thats where 4 of my favorite people live (Dad, Sarah, Corinne & Callie, if you were wondering), plus their 2 dogs - Zoe and Winnie.  They lost some trees and still don't have power, but everyone is OK!  Our family in West Virginia (on Will's side) are all OK too!

Thinking of everyone affected by the storm and hope your lives can get back to normal soon!

Pupdate

Its been a while and you all deserve a pupdate :)

Sarge & Stella had their annual exam on Monday...so off the 3 of us went to the vet.   Pure chaos as usual.  I look like the horrible pet owner that can't control their maniacs when I show up...they get so excited and practically drag me through the door when we get there.  Fortunately, they sit by my feet in the waiting room and just wiggle as they wait to get called back.

They have slimmed down a bit from the summer - which was good news to the vet.  Stella is 46 lbs and Sarge is 50 lbs.  They got a clean bill of health:  good hearts, good eyes, good ears, good teeth &  no heart worms!  I was given some Omega-3 oil for their food to keep their skin healthy...they tend to shed a lot because of the sensitive skin.

After their kennel cough nasal spray and rabies vaccination, these guys were ready to go home!  They were sent home with cute Halloween bandanas...I didn't manage to get a picture but I saved them in hopes th…

5K

I'm happy to announce that I ran in my very first 5K yesterday!!!  I'm so excited and so proud of myself - I never thought I'd actually RUN.
I've been attending Race for the Cure events for years now...since my college days.  My sorority's philanthropy is Breast Cancer Research and Awareness, so I started volunteering way back when.  Since college, I go to an event (most every year) with my alumnae chapter to keep up our tradition and support a cause so dear to us.  
This year, we went to Charleston (SC) on Friday night to get ready for the early morning on Saturday.  As I mentioned, I've been running/jogging at the gym lately and decided I was going to attempt to run this time...generally we walk the 5K.  
I completed the 5K in under 38 minutes!  Its no world record, but it is for me!  I'm looking forward to doing another 5K soon!

Flu Shot

It's that time of year - FLU SHOT TIME!  So Will and I just got back from getting ours.  I'm so thankful to have such a wonderful husband that will get a shot for me :)  He hates shots, but every year he sucks it up and gets one with me.  Probably because he knows I will not be his nurse if he gets the flu and he'll be quarantined. 
I went first:
Then Will: I won't lie - this guy wasn't the most gentle flu shot giver I've ever had, but it got the job done...so thanks CVS!!  And to Blue Cross Blue Shield for covering the cost :)  
I thought it would be fun to get a little reward for our shots today, so we picked our favorite things:

Don't forget to get your flu shots if you haven't done so yet!!

Cayston Time

Its was nice with my busy September that I was on my 4 "off" weeks of Cayston.  It just makes traveling a bit easier not having to worry about bringing all the "stuff" and then having to be sure I'm somewhere that I can do my treatment in the middle of the day.

That being said, I've finished my 1st "on" week.  I have been coughing a bit more - which I'm not sure if its cause of the Cayston, the weather changing (and my sinuses have been acting up) or from my increased exercise.  I feel good just coughing some :(  I've held off on the flu shot just in case its a bug.  But not having my flu shot makes me nervous - I DO NOT WANT THE FLU!!  I'm going to get it next week (and Will as well) just so I feel better about it.

As for exercising - I have been coughing while on the treadmill the past few times.  It isn't a full out coughing fit - just more of clearing some of the cobwebs.  Usually one good hack gets it out of the way and I kee…

Where has September gone?

It feels like I blinked and its already the 26th of September...what happened?  I guess its a good thing that life has been so busy that I haven't had time to blog.  I had 2 bachelorette parties and 2 other trips this month!  Sadly I discovered that I am not 22 anymore...the old fogey-ness of 29 has kicked in.  Despite my inability to "hang" with the younger crowd, I still gave it one heck of a try!

 I went Zip Lining in Asheville, NC:




I had a night out on the town in Myrtle Beach with some of my favorite ladies from college:


I visited Pittsburgh and helped host a shower for my soon-to-be sister-in-law:



Got to paint a pretty picture as part of my sorority's Alumnae event:


And finally,  last weekend Will and I went to Morgantown, WV to cheer on the Mountaineers!!!


This month has been a whirlwind, but I have loved it!!  I can't lie though, I'm ready for the craziness to stop and just spend a weekend sitting on my couch doing nothing!  All in due to time, this f…

One Happy Gal

I am one happy gal!!  Why you may ask?  Well, College Football has started - woohoo!!  I never was a big sports fan, but thanks to the hubby, I have become a huge College Football fan.  I really only like West Virginia and my alma mater, South Carolina.  So, don't go quizzing me on a bunch of stuff about it.  Heck, I'm still learning some of the rules but I do love the game and this time of year for many reasons.

Perhaps, its all the food?!?!  For all the games, we get together with our closest friends and tailgate (at home) with food galore!  We kicked off the season last night by watching Carolina play Vanderbilt.  Go Cocks!!   And another fabulous coincidence with football is the fall weather.  This miserable heat will soon be gone and I can bust out my jeans and hoodie (all time favorite outfit!).  Ahh, I just get all happy thinking about the cool air creeping in and the leaves changing - its the best season ever!

In honor of WVU, as part of our family photo session, we ha…

Family Photos

As I'm sure everyone has assumed (if you don't know me personally), my dogs are my children.  I obsess over them, take endless pictures, and I'd do anything in the world for them.  For some, this probably doesn't make much sense, but several of you probably understand.  Dogs give unconditional love, they never talk back and are always there for you.

To celebrate the pup's first birthday, we had a friend of mine come over and take some family photos (see her website here).  I always wanted to do this with Sophie, but never got around to it.  So, I wasn't going to delay any longer!

In honor of National Dog Day, here is a pic from our family photo session:



Cayston & Baseball

I just started a new round of Cayston on Monday.  I was scheduled to start on Saturday, but since we were out of town, I figured I'd just wait to start when we got back home so I didn't have to lug it with me...I had limited room in my carry-on suitcase for the flight, so the Cayston was sacrificed :)

All has been going well, I can feel it working already.  Unfortunately, that caused me to cough my head off on Tuesday night.  I woke up around 3am and tried to change positions and even sat up to try to help (this usually does help), but had not luck.  I had to go get my inhaler and take a puff.  Thankfully, this helped and I went right back to sleep and didn't disrupt Will or the puppies too much.

Speaking of my trip, here are a few pictures from the Yankees game:

We had a great time at the game and its getting me even more excited for my favorite sport - college football!!!  Woohoo - can't wait for a fun football season and lots of good tailgate food :)

Pupdate

Its been a while since I last provided a Pupdate.  The pups are a year old now (if I haven't said that yet - their birthday was July 6th) and they bring me more joy each and every day.  While they still have a lot of puppy in them, they are starting to behave more like mature, grown up dogs.  I trust them not to have accidents in the house, although I'm still not 100% trusting that they won't eat something they aren't supposed to when I'm not looking.

They have a lot more freedom these days and don't have to be kenneled unless we aren't home, or they get a bit rowdy and are terrorizing my house!  This usually happens when I'm gone and Will is working from home - I come back to rearranged furniture and toys spread across the floor, its quite the disaster!

We have even been letting them sleep in our room at night the past few weeks.  I got them a BIG bed that they just adore and have been sleeping great for us.  Sarge gets confused in the morning sometim…

Do you hear what I hear?

Have you ever noticed how certain sounds can bring on different emotions or even bring back an old memory?  I was laying in bed the other night struggling to get to sleep and as I lay there, I heard one of my favorite sounds of all and was relaxed.  That sound you may be wondering was the snoring of my bulldogs.  I'm not a fan of snoring (but who is?!) and can never sleep if someone is snoring nearby.  But, there is something about a bulldog's snore...it gives you peace (that they aren't tearing up your house!)


Then, the other day I heard the song "Amie" by Vince Gill and my mind immediately went back to when I was really young and I would sit on my dad's lap as we pulled the car into the garage.  This is one of my oldest memories...I was probably 4 or 5, but for some reason I have this distinct memory and always think of my dad when I hear that song.

Will and I flew to New Jersey this past weekend to spend some time with my dad, stepmom and sisters...we had…

PFTs and Clinical Trial

I get so frustrated with myself when I forget to finish a blog.  Here's one I started last week sometime...sorry for the delay :)

I'm beyond excited to be a part of a clinical trial!  I don't mind being a guinea pig :)  I've gone twice now and have 1 more visit left.  On the first day, I rode a bike and was hooked up to a bunch of machines measuring my heart rate, breathing, O2 count, etc.  I performed a max test, meaning I pedaled until I couldn't pedal any more!  I could have kept going (and I'm frustrated I didn't go longer) but my legs were exhausted, they couldn't pedal anymore...the lungs were feeling great.

So on my second visit, I worked at 20%, 40% and 60% of my max.  I did some PFTs, and was hooked up to all the monitoring devices like the first time.  Then, I had an ultrasound on my arm, so the doc could see my arteries and how the blood was flowing.  It was pretty cool!   I was given a few meds and after a 2 hour break, we did it all again. …

CF Appointment

Well, my quarterly appointment has come and gone, leaving me happy to report good news!  I'm down a few pounds (woohoo) thanks to my new workout routine and the lungs are doing good.  My FVC was 100% and FEV1 was 90% - I had done a round of Cayston about an hour before the test.  And thankfully, Friday was the last day of my 4 weeks on Cayston...so I had a happy day!

I told the doc about my chest tightening which occurred again on our West Virginia camping trip.  It felt like an elephant was sitting on my chest and I could not take a deep breath (kind of freaks you out a bit).  But, it went away.  It only happened one other time (this past February) and we couldn't find any common denominators between the two occurrences.  So, now that Cayston is off, I'm going to go back for some more lung functions on the 20th to see if they can see anything different.  I'll let you know how it goes!

 Also, I'm going to be participating in a clinical trial about arterial health i…

Camping

So I've been MIA again, but only on account of being busy or having my nose stuck in a book.  These days, I much rather read then write - sorry!

A few weekends ago, we had our annual summer camping trip with Will's family and as usual, it was a blast.  Our friends Matt and Brandy joined the camping crew again this year (they are brave souls!).  The guys kayaked and the gals relaxed!  The puppies had a blast - they even enjoyed swimming in the Greenbrier River, just like Sophie used to!







Birthday Time

I guess its been so long since I blogged since I've been having a wonderful time celebrating my birthday!  It was June 6th, but I tend to claim a whole week (at least) to celebrate - I think everyone should :)

My birthday started with a trip to Hilton Head Island with the hubby!  It had been a while since just he and I went on a trip, so we took off for the weekend!  We relaxed at the pool, took a few walks on the beach, did some shopping, ate some fabulous food, got massages, and had a great time!


After our weekend away, Will had LASIK surgery and all went well.  So I played nurse again for a few days with all his eye drops.  Its a rather amazing thing, within 24 hours he had 20/20 vision - wow!

My birthday was on a Wednesday and we went to Greenwood to have dinner with my mom and stepdad and then on Thursday we went over to Matt and Brandy's house to cookout with some more of our friends.

On Friday, I went off to New Jersey to visit my dad, stepmom and sisters!  Its hard…