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Stella Stories

Saturday, May 29, 2010

When we went camping, one of the parents who came to chaperone was Christy, the wonderful person who gave me the gift of Stella. Lady, Stella's mother, is dying of lymphoma and decided that she didn't want her mom to leave her home, so she stowed away in the van and ended up camping with us. It was wonderful to spend time with her.


Lady, Chrisy, Stella





Christy's tent was broken and she planned to spend the night in her van. No Way! I fixed up the couch that folds out into a bed in the camper for her. When we were finally able to hit the sack, Lady jumped into bed with Christy, and Stella jumped into bed with me. At some point during the night, I woke to find Stella sound asleep on my feet, and Lady curled up sleeping in my arms. At daybreak, Christy woke up with Stella in her bed, and I woke up with Lady in mine. It was very funny!

Stella started her Therapy Dog training last spring.



She almost passed her final exam, but she greeted the evaluator by gently mouthing her hand. Mouthing is an automatic failure, so now she needs to retake the final exam this coming fall (and pass) to be formally certified as a Therapy Dog. However, she already works as a Therapy Dog and is very good at her job.

When my 84 year old aunt, with breast cancer, bone cancer, and a broken arm was visiting, Stella did not leave her side.



Christy's daughter, who played Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, had to have some extensive surgery on her shoulder, but she still wanted to come camping post-surgery. She was still taking pain meds, and when she looked tired or pale, I would invite her into the camper to take a nap. Stella would curl up next to her and keep her company while she slept.



She can be a complete Wild Child, but when calm and comforting behavior is required, she knows it and is such a good caretaker.

She has also decided that she has another job. I was worried about letting the chickens roam free because I was worried that she would chase them mercilessly, as she has a very high prey drive. However, she recognized her role as care-taker immediately. She likes to herd them back to their house, or just hang out with them under the shade of a tree. They have grown fond of her and will sometimes follow Stella around.





Stella's Babies

She loves to pester poor Tex, but they also love each other and are total cuddle buddies.


She is such an awesome girl!








  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KRITTERKEEPERS 6/1/2010 10:27PM

    How sweet Stella is! I love your stories about your animals. Your chicks are really getting cute!
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JUST_TRI_IT 5/31/2010 7:38AM

    Stella's soul is amazing! You capture it quite gently with your words and photos. What a special friend she is.

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CATHYGETSFIT 5/31/2010 2:48AM

    Awww, I love hearing Stella stories! Makes my day to hear what great companion she is to anyone who needs her and that she has such a great mom! Sorry to hear about Lady though! You could see in her face that she wasn't feeling well. emoticon Thanks for sharing stories about Stella!!

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IUHRYTR 5/30/2010 9:50AM

    Stella is a wonderful friend and I enjoy reading about her. May you two share many, many more years together. -- Lou

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PENNYAN45 5/30/2010 8:42AM

    I love the Stella stories. She is a very empathetic dog. What a star! Thanks for sharing the pictures and narratives. I think I'm in love with your dog.

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DJS-DEBBIE 5/30/2010 7:48AM

    Thanks for a wonderful story!

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CEW1111 5/30/2010 2:05AM

    What a nice blog and amazing dog! I admire your therapy work and Stella's ability to nuture people, but it doesn't surprise me - she is a poodle after all. But, the chickens! Wow! I don't think I'll ever see the day my dogs don't chase the birds.

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AQUAJANE 5/29/2010 10:57PM

    emoticon Way to go, Stella! Made my day! emoticon

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MEOWMAMA3 5/29/2010 10:08PM

    That Stella is a true SuperStar! I'm glad you are her mom! Your camping trip sounds so nice! I did read the other blog too, what a great experience for you and your kids. It would be nice if I could do something like that with a hand picked bunch of kids. Some of the ones I've got this year might tie me up and burn me at the stake! Just kidding. You enjoy the crescendo of your school year and then give yourself a good relaxation period just for Chris.
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MTNCLIMBER88 5/29/2010 9:32PM

    Thanks for sharing about Stella! She is a total beauty and such a sweetie :)

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0309COOKIE 5/29/2010 9:25PM

    What a great blog! I love Stella!

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WATERMELLEN 5/29/2010 8:14PM

    Stella is a star. It's amazing to me how empathetic dogs are: all unspoken. They know what we need and are happy to provide it to us.

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MARY1313 5/29/2010 8:00PM

    Awwww what a good girl Stella is! I love these picture stories. You are a teacher even when you aren't at school!!

On a sad note, Stella Mom looks really sick. I'm so sorry about that, but how great that you got to spend this time with her.

What a little Mother Hen Stella is!

Mary

Comment edited on: 5/29/2010 8:01:00 PM

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SIRIRADHA 5/29/2010 7:11PM

    What a sweet, gentle creature...Stella, too!

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2BHLTHY4LIFE 5/29/2010 6:51PM

    Hi Chris! Another award winning blog emoticonStella is the most sweetest poodle,and so well behaved and so maternal.I cannot believe how big the chickens have gotten,seems like they were chicks,now they look almost full grown,amzing how qiuck they grow.What kind are the balck ones again? Which one is Denty? emoticonso much for sharing your most fulfilling life you live. I really enjoy your photo blogs,they are so emoticon. emoticonDiana emoticon P.S. Just a question about the color of Stella's daddy,her mommy is beautiful!

Comment edited on: 5/29/2010 6:53:32 PM

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KATIEGLEN012 5/29/2010 6:46PM

    I loved these pictures. She is such a good dog...and I love how she flies through the air!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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GRNISHADE 5/29/2010 6:45PM

    How awesome that she is gentle with the chickies! My six girls are getting so big! The new 'de-luxe apartment in the sky-i-i' is almost done. Hubby promises to whistle the Jeffersons theme song when we get them moved...

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LMB-ESQ 5/29/2010 6:41PM

    She IS an awesome girl... what a sweet dog!

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MARYMAC45 5/29/2010 6:40PM

    Very nice & touching! Thanks!

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Camping

Saturday, May 29, 2010

We had a great time on our end of the year camping trip. It was hot - in the mid-80s during the day, but cooled off into the mid-60s at night, so it was ideal swimming weather. The children spent a lot of time at the beach and out on the catamaran one of the parents brought along. We had a very pleasant evening night fishing one evening, and an evening swim the other evening. We also got a good booming thunderstorm on the second afternoon; I love at least one good thunderstorm on a camping trip with the children so they can see that you can not only survive one, but also enjoy it. The children got to spend some time in their tents playing cards, etc waiting it out, and I got some quiet time for me - woohoo!







Our Campsite



Children played music...











Went fishing...



Tended the cooking fire...



Went hiking..



Enjoyed snacks at the marina, went swimming, and just generally had fun. Everyone was cooperative at least most of the time and got along well with each other. They did not want to leave and are already excited about the camping trip next May emoticon

The Aftermath:



This is what poodles look like after camping with children for 3 days. emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BIRDBRAIN222 6/6/2010 11:27AM

    Wow! Hard to believe one person can make that much of a mess in only three days!
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KRITTERKEEPERS 6/1/2010 10:23PM

    The kitchen frightened me! When I was a single mom and I came home to a kitchen that the kids had left in disarray, I refused to cook until they cleaned up their mess! Hope it didn't take you too long to clean it up! emoticon

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HOPERISING 6/1/2010 8:41AM

    You are an amazing woman! What a great teacher/mentor/rollmodel you are for those kids! As for the kitchen... I used to come home from work to a kitchen like that EVERY night. Ahhhh... divorce.

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CATHYGETSFIT 5/31/2010 2:52AM

    LOL Men!! You gotta love 'em and all of their challenges in minor things! Sometimes you'd like to strangle them just a little bit though! emoticon Looks like you all had a fun camping trip! Did you catch any fish on your trip?

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IUHRYTR 5/30/2010 9:48AM

    Time to whack hubby over the head and teach him how to clean after himself. emoticon -- Lou

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MEOWMAMA3 5/29/2010 10:10PM

    Men are so challenged! Looks like you and Stella had a blast. Love the pooped out pic! I'll send my maid right over!
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JUST_TRI_IT 5/29/2010 10:02PM

    That aftermath!!! OMG... I've seen those before!!!

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PENNYAN45 5/29/2010 9:45PM

    Thanks for posting the pictures. The camping trip looks like it was lots of fun for everyone! I agree with you about experiencing a thunder storm -- it can be exciting!
You are terrific to do this each year with the students!

As for the kitchen on your return home - there must be some bargain you can make with Mike that would prevent that in the future. Threaten something terrible? Promise something wonderful? Maybe both! LOL







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0309COOKIE 5/29/2010 9:24PM

    I can't believe that kitchen, lol!

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WATERMELLEN 5/29/2010 8:18PM

    The camping trip looks paradisal: the kitchen, not so much! What is it about men and closing cupboards and drawers and putting stuff away???

Your Mike does sound like an absolutely excellent guy, however -- and I've been led to believe that I might have a few (tiny) flaws myself, which my Mike is too too tactful ever to mention . . . . .

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SIRIRADHA 5/29/2010 7:15PM

    Gosh, I miss kids!

And for the love of Mike! He's probably just trying to show you how much he needs you! LOL

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2BHLTHY4LIFE 5/29/2010 6:35PM

    Hi Chris! emoticonso much for sharing this with us! It sure takes me back to my own childhood and all the camping I did with my family almost every weekend growing up we had a camper and our friends had a trailor.The memories of your pictures remind me of the things we did and Memorial weekends that we always went camping or boating with our yacht club and always dealing with tons of traffic and 3 hour long waits for the ferry that took us to the other side of Puget Sound salt water.We lived on the east side of the salt water. Stella looks so pooped tired,poor girl. What kind of fish are you fishing for?What a beautiful place to go camping. That really is your kitchen? You are so honest and traumatizing with the photos of your kitchen,how many days were you gone? Wowsa,lol. Yah know, your kitchen looks like people with a very busy lifestyle and a happy one. Have a restful happy Memorial weekend,you and your family! emoticon emoticonDiana emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 5/29/2010 6:38:01 PM

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MARYMAC45 5/29/2010 6:30PM

    You deserve a lot of credit for doing this for all of those lucky kids. You are awesome. There are not many who could do this as well as you. I would have had a stroke if I came home to that kitchen-lol. Good bless you!
Mary emoticon

Comment edited on: 5/29/2010 6:31:16 PM

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LMB-ESQ 5/29/2010 6:28PM

    Looks like a great trip! Glad you had fun!

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CELLOSONG 5/29/2010 6:14PM

    Aw, looks like it was a great trip! I did have to pick my jaw off the ground when I saw those kitchen pics, though. Wow!

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EMMABE1 5/29/2010 5:51PM

    Sounds a great trip - but the aftermath - uggh!!

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A Few Answers to Questions About...

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Camping With My Class and My Camper

My camper IS more comfortable than a hotel. It is clean to my taste, all MY things are in it, I can prepare my own meals, all of the furniture is comfy, poodles are permitted, and no one has ever smoked in there. It has a fridge, large freezer, range, oven, lights, and a heating system for cold weather camping that I can use when I am not hooked to electricity with the addition of a microwave and AC when I can hook to electric. I love it!

The only thing that gets cooked in my camper on the school camp trip is coffee!

I do have a Dutch oven with it's own tripod for the camp fire, but I don't bring it on this trip because even though it is a large Dutch oven, it isn't large enough for the amounts of food we cook. Instead, one of the meals that the children make for dinner is a foil dinner. They cut up vegetables and meat (if they want) and wrap their custom made meals in aluminum foil after lunch. I put all of these in Big Daddy to slow cook until dinner. Clean-up is very easy. We also wrap potatoes up and slow cook for baked potatoes. Corn, we just soak while it's still in the husk, then throw the whole kaboodle in the coals to steam.

This year the children also want to make pancakes for one breakfast, bacon and eggs for another, quesadillas or tacos for a lunch, and sloppy Joes for one of the dinners. When they want to cook messy stuff, I make sure I have children who are willing to sign up for the cooking and children who are willing to sign up for the cleaning. There are vegan alternatives for each meal.




For desserts we will have vegan cupcakes (which we will cook today at school) the first night to celebrate the summer birthdays, and the second night we will have s'mores.

I will be taking 23 children ranging in age from 10 - 12.

The children have to haul water from the artesian well up the hill for clean-up after each meal, so I do try to keep things pretty easy to wash, but not TOO easy because one of the things I want to foster in them is a sense of adventure, accomplishment, and independence. As much as possible, I want them to do the work of out door living so they know they can do it. We go every year, so by the time they are in 6th grade they are very good at it and help show the younger children the ropes.



I do have parents coming to help chaperone. They can sign up for various time slots throughout the day. That way, there are enough people that various groups of children can be chaperoned at base camp where they love to play badminton, the beach, out on the lake on a boat, on nature hikes, etc.





The children set up their own tents, but if they need a little help, the parents make assist. However, I encourage them to let the children do as much of all of the work on their own. The parents are always amazed at how much the children can do!


Parent chaperoning base camp

The park is about an hour from here, so it isn't a huge hardship for parents to drive up to join us for a couple of hours, yet it is too far away for children to wimp out and decide to go home if they feel a little homesick.



All of these photos are from last year since we haven't left yet. emoticon

We always have a great time regardless of the weather, so I know we will have fun again this year.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IUHRYTR 5/30/2010 9:45AM

    I'm sure the young ones will remember these trips for a long time. Sure doesn't look like the "camping" we did in the Army emoticon. Hope you have a terrific time. -- Lou

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MHNGJR 5/28/2010 4:17AM

    Wow, sounds like fun! Have a great time. emoticon
Hope its sunny but not too hot.

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CLEVAGAL 5/25/2010 11:08PM

    sigh........I missed your blogging so gald to be on SP again and hear what you are up to and to do a good blog myself!
Cleva xxx emoticon

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MARY1313 5/25/2010 9:11PM

    oh I wish I could go!!!!

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SCOOTER4263 5/25/2010 2:49PM

    Many years of Brownie and Junior Girl Scout camping (two daughters, and I was always either leader or co-leader) doing basically the same stuff. Great memories. Hope you're enjoying. emoticon

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OLDERDANDRT 5/25/2010 1:52PM

    So, these are kids from your school? Sounds just like wht we did with our girls in Girl Scouts! DH and I were co-leaders. Your menu even sounds like the ones we used to have! It was tons of fun! Hope you all have a great time!!!

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Jayne

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PATRICIAANN46 5/25/2010 11:51AM

  I am a retired teacher who used to do fun outings like yours with the students and after reading your blog, I miss it even more.
These are memories that will live on with your students forever.
Good for YOU!!!

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JOY1972 5/25/2010 10:14AM

    Sounds like a great time! Enjoy!
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WATERMELLEN 5/25/2010 8:12AM

    What an amazing end to the school year for the children: and where do you find the energy -- physical and emotional -- to keep on giving like you do??

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SUNNY332 5/25/2010 7:45AM

    Yes, I am thinking you are going to enjoy the summer.

Hugs, Sunny

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All My Bags Are Packed I'm Ready to Go....

Monday, May 24, 2010

Except for the last minute items and after a weekend of shopping and packing, the camper is packed for the end of the year camping trip with my students. Today I took half of my sixth graders shopping for the groceries supplies, enough to feed 30 people 2 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners, and snacks for each day. Tomorrow I will take the rest of the sixth graders shopping for the supplies we didn't get today. The 6th graders have waited 3 years to get to be the shoppers and they are always so excited about it. They have been sadly counting down... "This is our last Monday at Antioch School." "This is our last camping trip with the Older Group." Poignant moments.

The children tent camp, but I bring my camper - it is base camp headquarters where the food, first aid supplies, etc. are kept and also my quiet, cozy refuge after the children are all tucked in, tired and overstimulated and ready for bed.

Camp Headquarters is now packed to the gills, although the bulk of the food, the fresh produce, is in the refrigerator at school waiting to be packed into coolers right before we leave on Wednesday morning.

Many of you have met Mike's and my classic camper in an earlier blog, the sweet little antique. This is my luxury camper with hot and cold running water and a shower. It is rigged to run on gas or electric; I will be using the gas this trip since we do primitive camping at the lake.



Trunk filled with outdoor cooking supplies, the kitchen tent, chairs, games, activities, and recreational equipment



You can't see very well, but Big Daddy Fry Pan is monsterously huge. It can cook pancakes, eggs, etc. for many people at once. The kids love cooking with it.



Ever nook and cranny,



or every crook and nanny, as my father used to say,



is packed with food to feed



the hungry hoards.



It is really amazing how much I can fit in there!



Bathroom with shower and tiny tub





Bedroom



Quiet meditation and centering corner




Kitchen



Living Room



Excited poodle who loves camping

After not getting out of the mid fifties and raining for 2 weeks, the weather has been forecast all week to be in the 80s during the day and mid sixties at night with mostly sunny skies. However, today, they put a chance of thunderstorms in the forecast for Thursday and Friday. I don't mind a thunderstorm, as long as all of the children are off the lake and back at base camp so I can send them to their tents. It adds an element of adventure to the trip. When it is cold and rainy the whole time, it gets wearing. So, all in all, it is looking like we will have good camping weather.

The children have to start the fire, do the cooking and cleaning, as well as keepthe campsite clean, so tonight I have to make up the chore lists for 3 days so different chores can be alternated between the children over the duration of the camping trip. Of course, it's not all chores - they get to hike, boat, fish, play, swim, and hang out at base camp - big fun!




  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LN7777 5/25/2010 6:12AM

    Hope you and Stella have a great time making memories that will last a lifetime for those kids emoticon

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LADYNETTIE 5/25/2010 1:42AM

    Wow this thing looks more comfortable than a hotel room! Reading about your big daddy fry pan reminded me: do you have a dutch oven? It makes the best dinners and desserts, right over the fire and super easy cleanup at the camp faucet afterwards. Keeps the mess out of the camper! Have fun
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0309COOKIE 5/25/2010 12:13AM

    All I can say is that you are one talented and brave soul! That and the fact that Stella looks adorable.

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IFDEEVARUNS2 5/24/2010 11:13PM

    Excited poodle is the best part!

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MARY1313 5/24/2010 10:48PM

    Oh wow! This brings back memories of taking over 30 boy scouts camping in the primitive area at one of our State Parks. It was soooo fun but lots of work to put together! You are so good to give these out going kids a life time of memories! I know this is bitter sweet for them and you too!

Hugs to you!

Mary

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SATYAGRAHA 5/24/2010 10:31PM

    Sounds like it's going to be A LOT of fun. I LOVE your little meditation corner in the camper. So cute!

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LMB-ESQ 5/24/2010 10:29PM

    Wow! What a trip! Are you the only adult going? How many kids? Sounds like great fun, but also LOTS of work! Good luck! And have a great time!

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MCGS62 5/24/2010 10:23PM

    Chris
You must have the patience of a saint to go camping with all those kids. I hope you have a great time. As always I enjoyed the pictures. emoticon

Jim

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MAWRTIAN 5/24/2010 9:43PM

    Sounds like its going to be an awesome trip!!! I loved camping as a kid, usually with girlscouts. I never had full appreciation just how much went into planing! Sing a round of Cum By Yah for me!!

m emoticon

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DOR2BFIT 5/24/2010 9:04PM

    Another impressive Pudlecrazy adventure, and Stella is so lucky to be able to come along! emoticon

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MARYMAC45 5/24/2010 8:44PM

    Chris, YOU are fantastic and your students are so lucky to have you. What an awesome class trip for 4th-5th and 6th graders. So many great memories will be made for all. Good luck, I hope the weather is glorious for you.

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TIBURONA 5/24/2010 8:42PM

    I won't kiss you, but I will smile for you. Have a safe and happy trip!

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WESLEYV 5/24/2010 8:26PM

    Nice...have a great time.

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DJS-DEBBIE 5/24/2010 8:22PM

    Wow, you are brave...and your kids are so lucky to have you!

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FT4EVR 5/24/2010 8:18PM

    Sounds like a fun time! My grandkids would LOVE taking a school trip like that! You look so relaxed in the picture...must have been sitting in the meditation corner! Enjoy your trip and looking forward to hearing about it when you get back.

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PUDLECRAZY 5/24/2010 8:17PM

    Actually, I am camping with 4th, 5th, and 6th graders since I have a three year program/

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PENNYAN45 5/24/2010 8:15PM

    Wow!! I am so impressed with your abilities! Camping with all those 6th graders is an awesome task - and responsibility!

I hope you have a WONDERFUL time! I am sure that the students will.

They are SO fortunate to have you in charge of this expedition!

My hat's off to you. You are amazing!!


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_COSMOPAULATAN_ 5/24/2010 8:11PM

    Your dog is super cute :)

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I Hate Cancer!

Friday, May 21, 2010

I don't want to sound like a whiner. It seems like this is a really bad time for my friends. I just found out that my friend, Jeanie, has just been diagnosed with stage 2 cancer of the pleural lining of her lungs. It seems that the breast cancer that seemed to be so effectively treated 3 years ago, metastasized. She will start aggressive chemo on Tuesday.

Jeanie has been a friend for many years, since our children were 3 years old and in dance class together. Those 'children' are now in their mid-thirties. She was the kindergarten teacher at the school where I still teach. She had retired 3 years ago, and almost right after that was diagnosed with breast cancer.

Jeanie has a couple of things in her favor; she has an effervescently optimistic attitude and a wonderful sense of humor. All of the things that made her the most warm, loving, humorous, effective, kind, patient, and over-all fabulous kindergarten teacher are the very things that keep her strong. But I know, after years of taking care of my father while he underwent chemo and radiation treatment for lung cancer, that she has a tough journey ahead of her.

I will be right there pulling for her, but I have to admit that I am scared. I looked up pleural lining lung cancer, and it is being called mesothelioma. My aikido parter of many years, the man who shared every belt promotion and the trials of the mat with me, died of mesothelioma after a two year battle with it. My father lived for 3 years after being diagnosed with lung cancer. I am trying hard to keep my thoughts as positive as Jeanie, but tears jump into my eyes and my throat clenches up if I spend time thinking about it.

I am hoping and praying that Jeanie will come through the other end of her treatments and recover to be a strong and healthy person again. I am determined not to dissolve into a puddle of tears and to be a strong warrior against cancer side by side with her.

Pardon my language, but cancer sucks.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

UMTONDO 5/24/2010 4:33AM

    Sorry you are not a whiner, you are expressing your feelings and that is good, get it out into the open. Let everyone know what and why you are feeling this way. Never keep it bottled up, shout it to the world. When you do that you are making us aware of your problems and we can rally around to give you encouragement and share your troubles. Only those that have lost loved ones to Cancer can truly understand our feelings about this, But gratefully the Lord does assist by being there in our time of need, all we need is prayers. God Bless and will add your friend Jeanie to my list of Prayers.

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ASTABETH 5/23/2010 9:34PM

    I am so sorry to hear about your friend. My mom's breast cancer metastasized and she had it in her lungs, liver, bones, and brain. It totally ate away one of her thigh bones. Now she has been released from chemo and the doctors are watching her closely. Miracles do happen and there are some unbelievable new treatments out there. I'll keep you both in my thoughts & prayers!

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WATERMELLEN 5/23/2010 8:16PM

    Cancer is very tough: having been there recently, and having stood by my sister as she dealt with it recently too, I assure you that friends like you DO help immeasurably in dealing with whatever comes.



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BILLTMAN 5/23/2010 6:47PM

    So sorry to hear the news about your friend. One of the great things she has going for her is that she has you as a friend. I will add her to my prayer list as well as you as the two of you go through this together. May God's blessings be upon you and your friend.

Bill

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JUST_TRI_IT 5/23/2010 8:43AM

    OH I am so sorry to hear this sad news. Being strong while a friend or family member is fighting hard against an illness is one way to love them. Jeannie will be in my thoughts.

emoticon,
Diane

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LADYNETTIE 5/23/2010 1:35AM

    I understand your fear and feelings. I also have a good friend who is battling breast cancer for the second time. She has been clean for years, and now it's back. They caught it early and she is in week 5 of 18 weeks of chemo and shows every sign of beating it this time too. The bad news is that they tested her for the cancer gene and she has it, so this is a genetic trait and she will have to expect more cancers to pop up for the rest of her life. I HATE CANCER TOO. I wish they would find a cure for some of this that doesn't include trashing the body. Maybe someday... emoticon

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MARYMAC45 5/22/2010 2:36PM

    It does suck. I am so sorry for your friend and I hope you both can stay strong. My FIL only lasted 5 months after his lung cancer diagnosis. That was 25 years ago. There are so many more treatments available today that the chances for beating it are better. You are both in my prayers. Stay strong so that you can support her in her struggle.
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MEOWMAMA3 5/22/2010 1:25PM

    Geez Chris, you are getting hit right and left with bad news. Which means some kind of great news HAS to be right around the corner. Keep the faith and stay strong. Jeanie will need you.
I'm here if you need to cry, scream or just vent, and you can use any kind of language you want. Hugs, Kim emoticon emoticon

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KRYANPRINCESS 5/22/2010 12:47PM

    I'm so sorry to hear bout your friend. I can relate to your feelings...A good friend of mine from High School has Stage 3 Lymphoma and My dad was just dx with Stage 1 throat cancer....sooooo yeah....Cancer Sucks...I hate it too! emoticon

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IUHRYTR 5/22/2010 11:20AM

    Yes, I agree that cancer sucks. It is such an insidious disease. Dad, Mom, my sister, a grandfather, all cancer victims. Let's pray for your friend and for a cure for this. Be strong. -- Lou

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LADYINOHIO 5/22/2010 10:39AM

    My grandmother lived with us the last few years of her life, and through a 2 year+ battle against lung cancer and emphysema. She actually ended up dying of an aneurysm, which was not what anyone was expecting... When I think of that, it just reminds me that we never truly know how much time we're going to have with anyone in our lives. That's why I hug my dearest loved ones as often as I can, I know that much. You don't have to apologize for your language either: cancer DOES suck.
Anybody who has been close to or lived with someone who is going through chemo or dealing with end-stage cancer can empathize with you, it IS scary and intimidating.
Sounds like your friend has a great attitude about it, and that is an amazing place to start the next leg of her journey, I think.
Deep breaths, it's okay to be sad, and sparkpeople are definitely here to support you, don't forget that.
emoticon

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LUECL3 5/22/2010 9:10AM

    emoticon
My father lived six weeks with cancer.
I know you're cautious in your feelings. Hopefully, Jeanie will be a success story.

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YUMYUMYUM1 5/22/2010 5:33AM

    you will need so much strength and courage to walk this path with your friend, knowing that our plans for life do not always match our destiny. you are a blessing to each other and I pray that you will be carried by the love you have for each other.. never give up hope, still, allow what must be.. that is one of the greatest challenges we humans face. love creates healing energy and it is obvious that love will not be missing in your journey together!
God bless you both and your families
Fraenzi

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MCGS62 5/22/2010 2:17AM

    emoticonand forward emoticonto your friend.

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0309COOKIE 5/22/2010 12:31AM

    So sorry to hear about your friend. I will add her to my prayer list.

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KRITTERKEEPERS 5/21/2010 11:52PM

    Chris, I am so sorry to hear about your friend. My father survived lung cancer and prostrate cancer only to die from cancer of the duodenum. My sister is a breast cancer survivor. Stay strong and positive.
emoticon

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DREMARGRL 5/21/2010 11:43PM

    Amen .....My mother has Stage IV colon cancer and has been doing fairly well. After chemo she was quite weak, but I'm passing along a shake I make just in case you need it for your friend. It has put my mother back on her feet and 7 lbs back on so that she is stronger. I put this in about a 24 oz. thermos twice a day when my mother couldn't eat. First I put in a couple oz of milk, then added a scoop of 100% whey powder, 1 T. natural peanut butter....shake very well....then bottle chocolate Ensure, two scoops Edys Vanilla Bean Ice cream and then filled the rest up with more milk. She loved it....looks forward to it and it helped put the weight back on. Since she has cancer in her bones, the calcium and protein couldn't hurt. She has only taken three medication pain pills since Dec. Every day she is without pain is a celebration. I know exaclty the emotions you are going through. Since I am the caregiver during the day with my Dad....it's tough, but we remain upbeat, smile and joke when she feels good...Her attitude is that of your friend and always has been. She is still being positive about what life she has left. Kudos for being such a good, loyal friend....She will need you! Blessings....Nite...XO MaryAnn

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TKADEEPBREATH 5/21/2010 11:29PM

    If ever the term fits, I would agree "suck" indeed. So sorry you and your dear friend are going through such a thing. My prayers are there for both of you.

love and hugs, Jan

emoticon emoticon

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MARY1313 5/21/2010 10:39PM

    ((((Chris)))) I am going to add you both to my prayer list indefinitely. and don't be afraid to cry in front of your friend. It may allow her to cry too. Be yourself and let her know that this is making you sad. I am so sorry about her. Cancer does suck. I have heard of this type of cancer too. But, I also read something the other day, I am thinking from the Mayo Clinic that said they had found from years of treating cancer that the ones with the great upbeat attitude are the ones that are the most resilient!

I so hate this for you both. You are in my thoughts any prayers.

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Mary

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GINGER1OF16 5/21/2010 9:42PM

    emoticon emoticon..sending prayers. She is blessed to have a friend like you to support her. God bless you both.

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PATRICIAANN46 5/21/2010 8:53PM

  You are absolutely right!!! Cancer does SUCK!!! My husband has a T-shirt that says just that. He had prostate cancer 5 years ago and lost BOTH of his parents to cancer. We also lost our sister-in-law in January.
It is a horrible disease but there is so much positive research on the horizon. All we can do is pray and be the kind of friend that you are.
I wish you and Jeanie the very best. emoticon

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SAMMIESMOM13 5/21/2010 8:27PM

    So, so sorry to read your blog. I haven't had to deal with cancer personally, but my mom has alzheimers- sometimes life sucks. Now we know why they call this the "veil of tears"- I will pray for you and for your friend. Her attitude can make all the difference so you stay strong for her and help her keep that attitude.

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THEICEVALKYRIE 5/21/2010 7:48PM

    SO, so sorry to hear about your friend. There are so many things that are outside of our control and sometimes you have to make the best with what you do have. It sucks being powerless, particularly when you have to watch someone you love suffer.

I hope your friend can win this battle! You are such a good friend to stick by her.

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OVERWORKEDJANET 5/21/2010 7:38PM

    Right there with you. I've lost more friends and family to it and have had my own share of woes than I care to think about. Having friends like you makes all the differnce in the world!

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~MISS_TEA~ 5/21/2010 7:37PM

    Oh sweatheart! I feel for you and your friend. You have been faced with quite a bit lately. I hope you can find peace with all that is happening around you so you can continue to be the incredible person that you are! YOu are in my thoughts!

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DJS-DEBBIE 5/21/2010 7:31PM

    I am with you. I lost my best friend a year ago to cancer and I still tear up when I think about her. It definitely sucks!

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KATIEGLEN012 5/21/2010 7:29PM

    Oh...I am sad for you and for your friend. This does seem like a lot to handle and is bringing up all the memories of your dad. As I said before...you have had a lot to deal with lately. I'll include you and Jeanie is my prayers this evening.

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OLDERDANDRT 5/21/2010 7:28PM

    Oh, sweetie,
I am soooo sorry about this awful turn of events. I will pray for you strength to be strong and positive for your friend and I will pray she beats this and can live out a healthy life for many years. It used to be just saying the C word was a death sentence, but research continues and new things are found to help. We're getting closer to cures all the time. Some types are already being cured!
I am very glad you have shared this in your blog so you can reap the many benefits of your Spark Friends support. Lean on me anytime, honey. I'm here for you.
emoticon emoticon emoticon
Jayne

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