Sunday, February 24, 2008

Time Keeps MOVIN ON!!!!

First an UPDATE on the Transplant..........


Scott's Bone Marrow Transplant was done on Monday, Feb will be 2 weeks ago tomorrow. So far, the transplant seems to have been successful. He has had lots of complications and lots of "bumps in the road" from all the meds he is taking but he is taking it one "bump" at a time. Scott is a real "trooper"....I think he will like that name since he worked for the Nebraska Safety Patrol for many years and is still a "trooper" at heart. And, let's don't forget Ann. All I can say about Ann is she is Scott's "Guardian Angel". She is taking care of Scott like a PRO and he is so lucky to have her. Scott is very upbeat and is looking forward to the day when he can move to his "temporary" home away from the hospital. He will have to stay in Omaha for a few more weeks to remain close to the hospital. We are PRAYING he will be home in Lincoln real soon and be cancer FREE!!!.

Here is a picture of Scott with his Hair Hat that I brought him from Texas. He calls it his "lucky hair hat". This was taken the day of the transplant. (Feb 11Th,2008)

He has what he calls a "Garden Hose" installed, that enters under the skin on his right chest and a tube that runs beneath the skin up directly into the Jugular vein. This is called a Hickman Port and is a double port line for administering all the medications, chemo, etc. He also still has the PICC line in his right arm.

Scott has quite a journey still ahead, but he has came a long way. We are very proud of the progress he has made. We all certainly appreciate all your thoughts and prayers. Special thanks to those that have posted notes to him on his CaringBridge web site. Please keep it up, its what is helping him pull through this!!!!

Here is that web site again:

We are enjoying a few day of "catching up" around our little place here in the desert. Next week we begin our "barrage" of annual medical checkups. Tomorrow we are headed to Phoenix to see the Dermatologist and my prostate cancer specialist. We also have a dozen other errands to run while in the BIG city!!! Don't like to go into all that traffic and congestion unless necessary.

Its been a WET spring here in this part of Arizona this year. The desert is already starting to get real GREEN!!! That's kind of unusual here, but does happen every few years...

Things will be blooming all over the place in a few weeks. A beautiful site!!!

That's about it for this week. Our good friends Jack and Danielle Mayer left us yesterday, headed to their hosting position in Moab, Utah. Gona miss them!!! Take care you guys and enjoy Moab.

Thanks for stopping by this week everybody,,, and stay in touch.....
See ya next SUNDAY.

Its a GREAT DAY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Congress, AZ (North Ranch)

See where we are: Mike & Pats Location in the Desert

PS. We're not really parked on the Highway!!!!! (about 100' from it)

Sunday, February 17, 2008

It was a GREAT WEEK!!!!

First of all, I must tell you that Son Scott's Bone Marrow Transplant took place Monday as scheduled without a hitch!!!!! Hallelujah!!!!!!
We were so concerned about it we had a hard time keeping our minds on business!!! So far, other than a few complications, it has gone extremely well for him. It will take approximately 10 days before they will know for sure that his body accepts the Transplant. Please keep him and Ann in your prayers. Here is his CaringBridge website so you can read about it. Please sign his guest book while you are there. We are so proud of those two!!!

WOW,,,,,it was a BUSY week!!!! We moved 173 miles to Casa Grande, AZ for the Gypsy Journal Rally. We were there and all set up for business Monday morning. It was a GREAT rally. We gave our 1.5 hr Seminar on Tuesday. Shortly after that business picked up and we sold a BUNCH of PressurePro Tire Monitoring systems and two PowerTanks. We sold MORE than we thought we would, in fact we RAN OUT of stock. Several others wanted a system, so we called our Distributor and ask them to "overnight" a shipment. Well, they did better than that!!

They flew a shipment into the local airport themselves!!!! Now you can't beat service like that!

Here is Pat receiving our new shipment from Duane Sprague our distributor, at the local Airport.

Here is a NEAT picture of the Rally. Its a full 360deg panoramic view, plus you can pan up and down and zoom in. Try it:

See our rig in the Panorama? We were set up and selling right out of our's along side of the long building.....

We were on our feet for hours at a time. Here Pat relaxes a few seconds while talking with a customer.
(click on picture to enlarge)

Here is a link to our friend Nick Russell's web site. He and his wife Terri put this fabulous affair on. There were over 250 rigs there. Thats close to 500 people and from the feedback I was getting, they all had a SUPER time.
We enjoyed seeing a lot of our old friends and old customers, and meeting new friends and new customers!

Yesterday we got back to North Ranch about 2:30 and it was 4pm before we got everything unloaded and had a chance to relax. BOY-O-BOY, its good to be back HOME at the Ranch!!! At the Fairgrounds in Casa Grande, we only had 15amps and no sewer hookups. We both needed a nice LONG, HOT shower!!!!! Now we need some R&R!!! WE are WORN OUT.............Considering retirement.............:-) I have about a dozen projects going that I have to complete first!!!

Its a busy LIFE!!!! Thank GOD!!!!! Otherwise I'd worry myself to death.

See ya next week, have a good one!!!

It was a GREAT DAY!!!!!! EVERYDAY!!!!!!!!


Sunday, February 10, 2008

Back HOME!!!!

On Thursday Feb 7th Mikel and I left the COLD, COLD, country and flew from Omaha back to Tucson. It was about 12 deg when we got to the Omaha Airport and we were anxious to get back to AZ. When we stepped off the airplane in Tucson, it was a beautiful sunny day and the temp was around 70. What a change!!!! Pleasant change !!!

Although we were anxious to leave the cold country, it was extremely hard to leave Scott and Ann in Omaha. They arrived at the Univ of Nebr Medical Center where we were staying 2 days before we had to leave for home. He had surgery on his chest where they installed a HICKMAN, line. It is a double port line that is surgically implanted in his jugular vein. This is a more direct line for the Chemo and the Bone Marrow Transplant.

Shortly thereafter, he began receiving the Chemo doses, plus several other shots and drip lines. The Chemo was pumped into him 4 times a day, 6am-12noon-6pm and 12midnight. It took around 2 hours for each dose to be pumped into his body. He and Ann are in the same room at the Medical Center Hospital, right next to the Lied Transplant Center where we were staying. They allowed Mikel and I to visit with him a few hours each day since we would be leaving soon and were blood relatives. No other visitors are allowed, as he was in the "bubble" and most of the nurses had to were masks and gloves as they entered his room. Even if we would have stayed, we wouldn't have been able to continue visiting him. They MUST eliminate any possibility of contamination as the Chemo continues to wipe out his immune system and the CANCER. This will prepare him for the Transplant. If all continues to go as well as it is, the Transplant will be Monday, Feb 11th. That's the BIG DAY!!!!!! We are all hoping and praying that it will be successful and his body will accept it.........

I mentioned it was hard to leave Scott at such a dramatic time as this. It was also hard to watch this Chemo do its job and drag him down. Its gets worse and worse with each dose! He gets nauseous, feverish, chills with violent shaking, diarrhea and many other side effects along with extreme fatigue. I felt so sorry for him and also felt so helpless! Thank God Ann is there by his side assisting him in every manner. I realize how hard this is for both of them and I am so PROUD!!! I must say that Scott is standing up exceptionally well through all this and what he has already been through! His outlook is great and he is happy and friendly, joking continually with his nurses. It confirms the feeling that he will BEAT this thing!!! If anyone can, he will.

Tomorrow is the BIG day. Keep him in your thoughts and prayers with us and I know it will come out succesful.

Click on this web site to hear more direct from Scott and Ann.

Click on the pictures to enlarge them........

They wanted us to experience a nice snow STORM while we were there, so they ordered this Special for us!! This was taken out of our room window.

This is Scott's room.

Ann has her bed right close, so she can keep a watchful eye!

These are the pumps and monitoring equipment Scott uses. It was interesting that it has a self contained battery pack and when he needed to use the bathroom, he just unplugged it and took it with him!

These are the bags of medication that Scott is receiving at the moment. There are two bags on the closest hook and the top bag is CHEMO!!!

This is the best look I could get at the Mountains from the airport in Denver.

DIA is a NICE airport. Its new since I used to live and work here.....We enjoyed touring it. The 4.5 hr lay over got a little long. We both wanted to get home.....

Here is our gate and its time to load !!! Next stop TUCSON, AZ. Can't wait to see Ms. Pat's smiling face...............PLUS,,,,today is our Anniversary!!!!!!!!!

Mikel and I were happy to have our mission completed. The exact match of Stem Cells are now in easy possesion of the Medical Team at the Univ of Nebr Medical Center for the TRANSPLANT!!!!!!
Its interesting to note (as I understand it) that both boys will have the same DNA after the Transplant and Scott will acquire Mikel's blood type. Scotts is O+ and Mikel is A+, so Scott will also be A+.

We will be anxiously waiting for the results of the Transplant and I will keep you advised. Also please visit Scott and Anns CaringBridge web sight. They are keeping it up as best they can while all this is happening................*Leave them a note!!!

MONDAY, will be a GREAT DAY!!!!!!!!!!!

See ya all next week.


Sunday, February 3, 2008

Greetings from ALASKA!!!!! errrrr,,,,NEBRASKA!

Nothing against my home state but I can't help but wonder "why in the world someone would live here!!!!"

Pat took my oldest son, Mikel and I to the Tucson airport last Wed morning and we flew out here to Omaha, Nebr. and checked into the University of Nebr Medical Center. When we arrived, we were met by my good friends and Mikel's Aunt and Uncle, Larry and Judie Johnson. It was GREAT seeing them again and they graciously took us to the Nebraska House which is a part of of this very large Medical Complex. It was brutally COLD!!! Everybody was dressed like Eskimo's.

Early the next morning Mikel began his preparation for the Bone Marrow Transplant. It was a FULL day of tests and answering questions and filling out forms. At 4:30 he began the series of shots he has to take to increase the number of stem cells in his blood. This is done because the amount of stem cells in your body is normally very low. There are two medicines called Growth Factors that are used. They are Neupogen and Leukine and will increase the number of cells in the blood stream. These are two shots and have to be administered very slowly because they will cause extreme pain if given fast. These shots will be given every morning at 9:30am and on Monday Feb 4th the Stem Cell collection will begin. We will start the day at 7am with more growth factor shots, then at 8am the actual Stem Cell collection process begins. Mikel will be hooked up to a machine that will pull blood from his arm into the machine and remove certain cells from his blood; and then pump the rest of the blood from the machine back into him. This machine will continue to pump blood from him, into it and then back until about 12 quarts of blood have passed through the machine. This process will take from 4 to 6 hours. If enough Hematopoietic stem cells are not collected with one collection, the collection process will be repeated the next day. These Stem Cells are then frozen until Scott has received sufficent Chemo and his body is ready for the Transplant. This will be at least a week after Mikel has donated.

It's very interesting that these Hematopietic stem cells collected for Scott will be maintained in storage until his death or until his Physician indicates that there is no further need for them. Thats neat!!! So if Scott should need more at a later date, they will already have them on hand. WOW,, the wonders of modern medicine!!!

Our flight plans call for us to fly back to Tucson on Thursday. If all goes as planned we should be back in the WARM country and we can put these winter coats back where they belong,,,in STORAGE!!!! Here are a few pictures of our trip and the area:

Tuscon Airport at 7:45 AM heading to OMAHA...

Pat has to STOP here,,,,,,,ticketed passengers only beyond this point........Bye Dear!!!!! Gonna miss ya!!!!

Wasn't long until we were there and the process began!!! Shots, Shots and more Shots!!!

This is the Lied Transplant Center. We have nice room here and all the medical offices and rooms are all right here. This is also the same place Scott will have his Last HEAVY 5-6 days of Chemo and then the transplant.........After that, he has to stay here within 10 minutes of the place for 3 months..........It's 55 miles from his home......

This is the Nebraska Cafe where we eat all of our meals...

We are all looking forward to the BIG day, MONDAY. The day of the donation. Then the next REALLY, REALLY Big day will be the TRANSPLANT. That will hopefully happen in 6 to 10 days. We are all praying that it is successful!!! Please keep Scott in your prayers!!!

There are more pictures of this superb Medical Center on my Web Albums and I will be adding more as it happens.....

click here:

See ya all next week end!!!

It's a GREAT DAY!!!!!

Take care

Mike & Mikel