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San Diego Padres with Make-A-Wish! 9/16/2014

Padres Dugout!

Padres Dugout!

On Wednesday, 8/27, we were invited by Make-A-Wish San Diego for a night out to enjoy a San Diego Padres baseball game.  This was more than just a night at the ballpark, this was the VIP treatment.  We were greeted at the VIP entrance, given a bag of Padres swag and taken down to the field to watch batting practice, sit in the Padres dugout, meet some players, and get autographs.  Then the Padres Manager, Buddy Black, came in the dugout and talked with us for a couple of minutes, signed some baseballs and took some pictures with us.  WOW, that was very cool!  He asked the boys to go rattle the players’ bats around to wake them up since they have not been generating many hits lately.  Buddy is a very friendly and gracious guy who really made us feel at home.

Travis with Buddy Black!

Travis with Buddy Black!

Then we were off on a behind the scenes tour of the Petco Park stadium.  We did a similar tour a couple of years ago for Father’s Day but you always see something new or find out an interesting piece of information that you didn’t know before.

The tour ended at a Luxury Suite where we were hosted by US Bank.  They had all the food and drinks you could imagine.  There was a couch, big screen TV, a couple smaller TVs, refrigerator full of refreshments and don’t forget our own private bathroom.  It was an amazing way to watch a great game against the Milwaukee Brewers.  Well, the bat rattling must have worked because the Padres started hitting and took the win 3-2.  Go Padres!

IMG_20140827_193747_449

We can’t thank Make-A-Wish San Diego, the San Diego Padres, and US Bank enough for providing us with such an awesome experience.  Thanks also to Trevor, the photographer, who captured some great images.  You all made us feel so special and we are very grateful to have been a part of the VIP Night.

You can see some more pictures in the Photos section.

Thanks,

Tony, Lynne, Tyler and Travis

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Jonno’s 50k for Travis the Warrior! 8/27/2014

Travis and Coach Jonno

Travis and Coach Jonno

Coach Jonno is part of our extended soccer family and he came to us some months ago asking Travis to pick a charity that he could raise some money for in Travis’ honor.  With so many great organizations we have come across throughout our journey that was a very difficult decision to make.  But, Travis kept coming back to Make-A-Wish for all of the incredible things they do for so many kids facing life-threatening challenges.  So, Travis decided on Make-A-Wish San Diego!

Jonno’s idea was that on Sunday, October 26th, 2014, he would run a 50k Trail Run and the money he could raise from people sponsoring him would go to this great organization (yes, that is 50 kilometers or 31 miles).  If he can reach his goal of raising $8,000, Make-A-Wish San Diego will dedicate a child’s wish in honor of “Travis the Warrior.”  Travis asked:  “Coach Jonno is really going to do all that for me?”  Wow!  What else can we say?  Jonno is such an inspiration and we are in awe that he would go through such a grueling training program and a 50k race is such a special way to honor Travis’ battle (keep in mind, many of his training runs will be between half and full marathons).

Team Travis!

Team Travis!

Here is the link to Jonno’s website with a little about his story.  There is also a picture of Jonno and Travis, both sporting their Travis the Warrior t-shirts.  Hopefully we can help Jonno reach or exceed his goal to make a child’s special wish come true.  Donation amounts of any size will help.

http://friends.wish.org/024-000/page/Jonno-Davison/Jonno%27s-50k-for-Travis-the-Warrior.htm

You are awesome Jonno!!!

Thanks,

Tony, Lynne, Tyler and Travis

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RECAP: American Cancer Society’s “Relay for Life”! 8/26/2014

As we wound down our second annual participation in the Relay for Life event this weekend, we couldn’t help but feel so much love and support after coming together for such a great cause.  We started out with a few challenges but continued to march on to fulfill our mission which fit right in with our military theme this year.  On Friday evening, we loaded up the car and hopped in to go over to set up our campsite only to find out the car wouldn’t start.  That was not going to deter us so we jump-started it and off we went, but still had to work in buying a new battery over the weekend.  We came back Saturday morning to start the event only to find out that the sprinklers for the field had gone off Friday night even though we were assured they were turned off.  So, we arrived to a soaked campsite with everything wet including sleeping bags inside all of our tents.  Bummer!  But hey, we reconfigured and let the sun do its job while we soldiered on.

We had so much fun beginning with the Opening Ceremony, the Survivor Lap, various events throughout the day, Luminary Ceremony at night where Travis gave his speech (see below), walking all those laps (see the top totals below) and finally the Closing Ceremony.  Aside from generous donations (Thanks Everyone!), we managed to raise almost $800 at the event from organizing the Boot Camp Challenge, Baked Goods for Sale, Lap Beads and handmade Cancer Ribbons by Tyler and Travis.

In addition to our Faith & Works Family, there were so many people who came out or donated to support us that we can’t possibly begin to thank:

Jane and Bob T.

Saul, Erika, Saulito and Samuel A.

Martine, Tiernan and Olivia H.

Bessie, Scott and Zachary D.

Lori, Andy, Christopher and Stephanie G.

Dave M.

Karen W.

Karen, Clint, Bryan and Grandma

Steve and Terri H.

Thank you all so much!

 

Here are a few interesting stats…

Top Miles Walked: a Marine did 26.1 (Marathon), Rich did 23, Tyler and Travis both did 20 miles each.

Event Total Amount Raised: $25,693.56

Our Team Raised: $1,546.80

 

Here is Travis’ Speech that he did during the Luminary Ceremony:

Hi, my name is Travis and a lot of people call me “Travis the Warrior” because I am a Brain Cancer Survivor.  This is my second year doing Relay for Life with my Faith & Works family and I am happy to be here today.

Last year in March, I was diagnosed with a type of Brain Cancer called Medulloblastoma.  It was very hard hearing that I had Cancer because I didn’t know exactly what Cancer was but knew it was bad.  After the doctor explained everything to me, I interpreted it to be like a weed growing in my garden.  If you don’t take it out, it will spread and take over.  So, I had brain surgery the very next day at Rady Children’s Hospital to remove it.

On March 7th, the surgery went very well and the doctor was able to remove all of the tumor.   I am very lucky because we caught it early and it was located in my 4th brain ventricle so it was easy to access, as if brain surgery could be easy, right.  I spent the next week recovering in the hospital before I was able to go home.  A lot of my friends supported me by making cards and bringing me books, toys, McFlurries, and visiting me. 

In early April, my family and I drove to Houston Texas so that I could receive Proton Radiation Therapy at MD Anderson Cancer Center.  We stayed there for almost two months and everyone was very nice.  In the beginning of treatment, it was very hard but I adjusted over time.  After my six weeks of Proton therapy, I was able to bang the end of treatment Gong and we had a party to celebrate.  We drove back home over Memorial Day weekend and I was so happy to be home and see my family, friends and my dog, Cisco.

When I came back, I had lost all my hair during radiation so my friends did a head shaving event to support me.  That was really amazing of them to do such a thing for me.  With everyone’s support, I was able to finish out the school year with my friends and had a couple weeks off in the summer before starting my next part of treatment. 

Then over the 4th of July weekend, I started the first of my 6 rounds of Chemotherapy.  For each round, I spent 4 to 5 days in the hospital.  Then I was able to go home for the rest of the month but I had to have a lot of lab work done so the doctor could monitor my blood counts.  For two weeks I had to stay away from everyone so that I did not get sick.  When I couldn’t go to school, my mom home schooled me.  I finished my last round of chemo right before Christmas and I have been getting stronger every day since then.

My first Relay for Life was last summer in Carlsbad and it was just after my first round of chemo.  I was hoping I would be able to walk the Opening Ceremony Survivor Lap, the Luminary Lap and the Closing Ceremony Lap.  But when I started walking, I would walk until I needed a break and then I would walk some more.  A lot of people came and walked with me.  By the end of the event, my legs were sore but I had walked 9 miles.  Yes, that’s right, 36 laps.

To me, Relay for Life means that we will Celebrate all who have fought their battles, Remember all who have lost their battles and Fight Back for all who are still fighting the battle so that we can help find a cure one day.  I think we all know that Cancer Sucks.  Even though my treatment was long and hard, my family and I always tried to find the Silver Lining in everything we did.  I know that I have been blessed in so many ways and Relay for Life has been one of those blessings.

This Relay, my goal is to walk a Half Marathon (13.1 miles) so I look forward to seeing you on the track tonight and tomorrow morning.

Thank you! 

Relay for Life = Celebrate, Remember and Fight Back!

Love,

Tony, Lynne, Tyler (20 miles) and Travis (20 miles)

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American Cancer Society’s “Relay for Life”! 8/23/2014

Once again, our Faith & Works group has arranged for all of us to participate in the American Cancer Society’s “Relay for Life” which we will do in Encinitas this year.  The idea is that we will participate in a 24 hour relay where our team will have someone, or multiple people, walking on the track continuously for the 24 hour period.  The plan is that we will set up our campsite and stay from 9am on Saturday, 8/23, to 9am on Sunday, 8/24.  Our team will be helping to raise money for the American Cancer Society and cancer research by having a Bake Sale, running some activities during the event and then through the Luminaries that will be lighted at the Luminary Ceremony on Saturday evening.  It is going to be a lot of fun and a great way for all of us to pull together to support all of those battling or who have been touched by cancer in some way.

 

If you have some time and would like to stop by to walk some laps with us or just show your support for Travis, here are the details:

 

www.RelayForLife.org/EncinitasCA

 

Digueno Middle School Track

2150 Village Park Way, Encinitas, CA 92024

9AM on Saturday, 8/23 to 9AM on Sunday, 8/24

 

Here is the Link to our Faith & Works team Relay for Life site:

http://main.acsevents.org/site/TR?fr_id=56779&pg=team&team_id=1665114

 

Here is the Link to our Travis’ Relay for Life site:

http://main.acsevents.org/site/TR/RelayForLife/RFLCY14CA?px=37843303&pg=personal&fr_id=56779

 

Thanks,

Tony, Lynne, Tyler and Travis

 

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Summer has Come and is Almost Gone! 8/17/2014

Back in June, we remember saying that it would not be so long until the next time we posted an update.  But, here we are again delinquent in our writing and finding ourselves having a hard time trying to remember what happened last week, let alone 2 months ago.  The summer has come and flown by so fast, we can’t believe school is starting already.

 

So much has happened this summer it is difficult to know where to begin. We can start with both Tyler and Travis finishing school back at the end of June.  It is hard to believe that Tyler will now be in high school and Travis will be one of the big men on campus as a 6th grader.  Wow, or should we say Scary!

 

During his first week out of school, Tyler was able to attend a week long camp up in the mountains called Camp Reach for the Sky.  The camp is sponsored by the American Cancer Society and is for siblings of cancer patients.  Tyler was able to go last year too right before Travis’ chemo started and it is a great experience for the kids to be able to bond together knowing they are all in the same situation.  He had a lot of fun reconnecting with some of the kids from last year as well as meeting some new friends this year.  He also gets to see these same kids at the monthly support meetings down at Rady Children’s they can stay connected.

 

After Tyler returned from camp, we had a few days and then we were off for our first family vacation in a year and a half and first trip back to the east coast in more than 2 years.  We flew out of LAX to Washington DC where we were supposed to spend the night with Lynne’s stepmom, Patsy. But, since we missed our original 10am flight due to a ticketing snafu at the airport, and our rebooked flight was delayed until 5pm, we didn’t land in DC until 1:30am.  This delay caused us to miss picking up our rental car before they closed so we ended up having to grab a hotel near the Dulles airport and settled in around 3am.  Thanks United or should we say thanks to the ticketing system that did not properly issue one of our 4 tickets or thanks to the gate agent who did not hold the door open for a couple of minutes despite knowing that we were on our way from the ticketing agent!  Anyways, despite having some choice words about the situation, we weren’t going to let it get us down.  We spent some good quality Hours in the United Lounge and watched some of the World Cup games on TV to help pass the time.

 

Since we needed to drive to North Carolina the next day, we woke up in the morning, went back to the airport to get our rental car and then we were on the road to NC.  We were headed to see family and friends from when we used to live there, and we were going to our cousin Emily’s wedding.  Eddie and Holly planned a BBQ that evening for all of the family coming in from out of town so it was great to see/meet everyone and we laughed the whole night.  The next day, Karen, Clint and Bryan drove in from Tennessee so we were able to hang out, catch up and go to the rehearsal dinner which was a lot of fun too.  Saturday was the big wedding with Emily and Michael getting married.  They picked a “country” theme for their wedding and the ceremony was held out on a farm overlooking a beautiful lake.  It was perfect and the reception afterwards was a blast with great food, music, dancing and laughing the night away.  Even the boys (Bryan, Tyler and Travis) hit the dance floor to show off their moves.  The next day, we went to Raleigh to see some dear friends from when we lived there and went out to lunch.  Mary picked a great restaurant, Bahama Breeze (go if you have the chance) and Kim was able to come too.  It was so much fun back in NC hanging out with family and friends that the boys were ready to move back.

 

But it was time to go so after NC, we drove up to Virginia Beach to spend 4th of July with Tony’s Dad and family.  Since we were there last, Tony’s Dad had moved into a new retirement community that is located right on the Chesapeake Bay.  Every day, the boys were out there looking for shells on the beach and checking out the warm water.  We stayed with Steve and Terri, and Doug, Richard and John came into town to see us too.  Steve and Terri have a beautiful place right on the water, so the boys set the crab pots off the dock and checked them every day.  In the end, we let the crabs go and opted to have the crab cakes from the seafood restaurant instead.  Steve and Terri just built a new garage addition to their house which has the ultimate “man cave” above the garage with a 70 inch TV, full bar/kitchen, bathroom with steam shower and TV, and music throughout.  Needless to say, that is where the boys chose to sleep.  Go figure!  We had a great BBQ at Dad’s place but while we were there, hurricane Arthur came through so all of the fireworks were cancelled for the 4th.  Never fear, we made our back up purchase of fireworks in NC so the boys had just as much fun setting those off instead.  There is something about setting off your own fireworks!  Again, we had so much fun in VA Beach, the boys were ready to move there.

 

We left VA Beach on July 5th and headed for Ridgewood/Oakland, NJ to see Tony’s Aunts, Uncles and cousins.  We stayed with Patti and Phil and they hosted a BBQ/Pool Party that became known as Selinkafest 2014 after all of the fun, not to mention the Cinnamon Redhot Shots (Rumchata and Fireball).  With all of the cousins coming together, it was another reunion with some family we haven’t seen in more than 15 years.  Wow!  Where does the time go?  It was great to reconnect with everyone!  The day before we had to leave, we went up to Nyack, NY to visit Sister Helena who is a nun that has been a part of Lynne’s family for almost 40 years.  She used to live in New York City but retired a few years ago and now lives with some other sisters in a beautiful retreat situated along the Hudson River.  We had a great time getting to see her again, having lunch and touring their amazing property.  Sister always tells us that we have Nine Nuns from Nyack, New York praying for us, especially Travis.  How can you go wrong with that kind of support on your side?

 

It was getting down to the end which meant that it was time for us to drive back down to DC so we could catch our flight home.  The boys really hated to leave and were ready to move to NJ, especially since they had their eye on Phil’s super-super-charged Ford Mustang Roush edition.  We don’t think they realize how cold it gets there in the winter but at least they had grown accustomed to the summertime lifestyle of hanging out by the pool and BBQs every day with family.  Next time we go back, we will definitely plan some time to head into the city.

 

We made it back to DC where we were able to spend the night with Patsy and Susan this time.  It was nice to see them and the next day, we were off to the airport.  But, a trip to DC would not be complete without a visit to the Smithsonian National Air and Space museum.  So luckily, we were able to stop by the Udvar-Hazy annex near Dulles airport for a few hours before our flight left.  They have some amazing aircraft and aviation/space history there!

 

After being gone for two weeks, it was great to be home and Cisco was so excited to see us.  Thanks Maggie for taking such good care of our boy!  We came home and jumped right back into Soccer tournaments, Bethlehem camp, Batiquitos Lagoon camp, swimming classes and enjoying the last bit of summer.  Before you know it, we are back to school and trying to figure out a new routine.  But, that is how life goes as things get back to normal. If this is what getting back to normal is like, we will take “Normal” any time!

 

Thanks,

Tony and Lynne

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Celebration of Champions, Padres Game, 25th Anniversary and More! 6/6/2014

The last time we posted an update, we said that it would not be so long until the next one.  Yet, here we are again and time has flown by so fast, it is hard to keep up with.  During these last few weeks, we attended the Celebration of Champions and San Diego Padres game.  We celebrated our 25th Wedding Anniversary (Happy Anniversary Babe!) which was made possible thanks to Kathleen for hanging out with the boys so we could have some quality time.  We celebrated Memorial Day weekend and now soccer is in full swing.  Wow!

 

When Rady Children’s Hospital does an event, they do it right!  On Saturday, May 10th, we were invited out to an event called Celebration of Champions for pediatric cancer patients, aka Champions, to celebrate those who are battling against Cancer and also remember those who have lost their battle after fighting so hard.  The event was held down at the Marina Park on the San Diego bay front right by Seaport Village and you couldn’t pick a more beautiful place to bring all of these Champions together.

 

The idea of the event is to bring the patients, families, doctors, nurses, and staff and pair them with sponsors and celebrities to run an Olympic style relay passing the Torch to the next runner.  The distance each runner had to go was about 1/8th of a mile. Everything started out with the Marine Corps Color Guard presenting the colors and the National Anthem.  That always gives us goose bumps!  Then the relay was kicked off by the Remembrance Walk to celebrate and remember those children who lost their battle with cancer while their families and friends carried pictures of them around the first lap.  Then they all came to the center of the event for the Balloon Releasing Ceremony where the white balloons were released and represented the Angel Champions.  There was not a dry eye in the crowd and it was very emotional to watch those balloons disappear into the sky.  Very powerful stuff!  After we took a deep breath, dried our eyes and said a little prayer, we continued on with the Relay, just as those little Angels would have wanted us to do.

 

The relay portion of the event lasted around two hours and it was incredible to see each and every Champion carry the torch and pass it along to the next Champion.  They were all surrounded by their families, friends, care givers, celebrities and sponsors.  Some ran, some walked, some were pushed in their wheelchair and some were carried the distance by their celebrity.  It was so inspirational and uplifting to witness knowing firsthand what these amazing Champions have had to overcome in their lives.

 

Travis’ celebrity was Jedd Gyorko of the San Diego Padres and his sponsor was a team of about 8-10 scientists from Pfizer who work in the cancer field.  We were also able to meet, take pictures and get autographs of other celebrities including Nick Hundley and Will Venable of the San Diego Padres among others.  With the relay running a little longer than expected, just when it was almost Travis’ turn, Jedd came up to us to apologize because he had to leave to get down to the Padres stadium at Petco Park for their game later in the day.  We understood and we told Jedd we really appreciated him taking the time to come out and spend time with us.  One of the other celebrities in our group, Rich “Super” Power (a professional fighter), heard what was going on and he said “I’m running with Travis!”  He is such a great guy and you just couldn’t help being overcome by his infectious energy as he interacted with all of the kids.  Rich asked Travis are we walking, jogging or running and Travis said we are sprinting.  Rich said: “here we go!”  So when Travis received the torch from the previous runner, he took off running and it was hard for all of us to keep up with him.  That was great to see as we sprinted to try and keep up with him!

 

The relay concluded with a Survivors’ Lap where all of the Champions took a celebratory lap with all of the celebrities and it was inspiring to see so many kids battling back from such a terrible disease.  The event provided lunch for all of us courtesy of Jersey Mike subs and everything was delicious.  After lunch, the kids were able to enjoy a bunch of Carnival Booths that were set up around the event so they could do face painting, ice cream sundae making, photo booth, ball toss and so much more.  It really was a well-organized event that we will look forward to attending in the years to come.

 

Here is the link to the Celebration of Champions if you want to read more about the event:

http://www.celebrationofchampions.com/index.html

 

In addition to our local KUSI TV newscast covering the event (Travis was on TV twice during the newscast), here is a link to our local 10 News article covering the event (Travis is in one of the photos wearing the yellow shirt carrying the torch and running with celebrity Rich “Super” Power).

http://www.10news.com/news/celebration-of-champions-honors-children-with-cancer-raises-money-for-rady-childrens-hospital-05102014

 

After the event, we were treated to a San Diego Padres game against the Miami Marlins by the Padres Manager, Buddy Black and his wife.  All of the kids were taken down onto the field in front of the Padres dugout along the first base line and honored as part of the Celebration of Champions before the game.  And, the Padres won!

 

That was a great way to finish off a perfect day!

 

Thanks,

Tony and Lynne

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Happy Mother’s Day! 5/11/2014

Happy Mother’s Day to all of you Mothers!  We had a great day with a picnic lunch at the Leo Carrillo Ranch which is one of Lynne’s favorite places.  It takes her back to her early days watching “The Cisco Kid” on TV (fyi, Leo Carrillo was Pancho in the TV show).  Several years ago, we bought the TV series on DVD and the boys love watching it too.  Kathleen went with us and we ended up taking the guided tour after lunch.  We learn something new every time we go there.  All and all, it was a great day spent with some great people!  We hope you all had a great day too with the ones your love.

 

Thanks,

Tony

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Spring is Rollin’ Along! 5/9/2014

You know, we were just saying that it has been a while since our last update but we were shocked to see that it has been more than a month.  Wow!  Where did a month go?  Since we can barely remember the details from a few days ago, maybe we will just hit the highlights over this last month to kind of catch up and we will do our best to try not to fall so far behind in the future.  Promise!

 

At the end of our last post, the boys were just starting their Spring Break.  Since we are planning to travel back to the East Coast this summer, we decided to stay at home and have some fun around here.  Besides the boys doing typical spring break things like staying up late and sleeping late, they also used the time to do some kid things like build some crazy Lego robots and battle-bots.  Sometimes with the daily grind of homework and activities, they just don’t have the free time to play, so they definitely took advantage of the free time. 

 

Right around that same time, we invested in the “Bond 50: Celebrating 5 Decades of Bond 007” DVD set (23 movies).  Thanks Amazon/Prime!  The boys have seen a few of the more recent Bond movies like “Skyfall” and occasionally we catch an older movie on TV like “Goldeneye.”  But we started out going all the way back to the beginning which is “Dr. No” with Sean Connery.  Although the stories are still good and action packed, the boys realized how much the movie making has changed since the 1960s.  We were able to watch 6 or 7 of the movies but they can’t wait until we get into the 1990s and 2000s!

 

We attended the Easter celebration masses at our church. On Holy Thursday, Travis was selected to participate in the Washing of the Feet ceremony and on Good Friday, Tyler was an Altar Server with Olivia, both of which were great honors at this very special time of year for us.  On Easter Sunday, we decided to go to the 8:30am mass to try and beat the crowd but the service was packed and we felt very lucky to have seats.  We celebrated the day and then had a great Easter Dinner at our house with Martine, Tiernan and Olivia.  We always have such a good time when we get together and can’t wait for our next round of Apples to Apples.

 

We were able to do one of our service projects at the Escondido Humane Society with our Faith and Works group.  It was a hot day and we did some work cleaning out a bunch of pens and moving many wheelbarrows full of decomposed granite to cover the pen areas.  But, we always have fun putting in time together and getting dirty for a good cause. 

 

During the last month, we were able to go out and see some of the UCSD Men’s Soccer practice and games.  We traveled up to Riverside to see them play UC Riverside and also saw them play at home a week ago where Tyler, Travis and some of his soccer buddies were able to be ball-boys.  Travis really likes going to see the guys (and we all do too).  They are really such great young men and they always go out of their way to make Travis feel special.  And it is some good soccer to watch so it is a win-win for us.

 

On the medical front, we had to go in for Travis’ annual Lumbar Puncture (aka Spinal Tap) which is no fun but necessary.  Luckily they put Travis to sleep so he doesn’t feel anything during the procedure which is a good thing.  Also luckily, his spinal fluid came back negative for any cancer cells which is a great thing.  So we are good to go for another year on Lumbar Punctures.  Yeah!  We had an annual Endocrinology appointment and his Counts are good!

 

Before you know it, everyone was back to school and back to work.  Time really does fly when you are having fun!

 

Thanks,

Tony and Lynne

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Pets Add Life Poetry Contest! 4/7/2014

Back in January, Lynne talked Travis into submitting a poem for the “Pets Add Life” poetry contest.  The poem was for children between grades 3-8 and they were supposed to tell about the “joys and benefits of owning pets.”  After some coaxing and prodding, Travis set out to create his masterpiece.  Here is Travis’ poem:

 “Cisco”

One ear up

And one ear down,

I always love

Having you around.

You are a part of me

And I am a part of you.

You are the one

Who keeps me persevering through.

Whenever times are hard

You always keep me strong,

And ever since I got you

I knew I wasn’t wrong.

I know we’re brothers from different mothers

But my love for you is rife.

A human is just a human

Until a pet adds life.

Travis

(Brain Cancer Survivor)

Well, low and behold, we just found out that he won out of the 5th graders.  Wow!  Not only does Travis win a gift card, but he also earned a scholarship for his class to apply towards pet related education or supplies.  It goes to show, you never know until you try…

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Happy Birthday Cisco! 3/27/2014

Cisco!

Cisco!

Thursday, 3/27, was our pup Cisco’s third birthday!  In some ways, it is hard to believe that 3 years have gone by so fast while in other ways, it is hard to imagine life before him.  Since the boys could talk, they always asked about having a dog.  Over the years, we have had Hermie the Hermit Crab, Lizzy the Lizard, Pusher the Madagascar Hissing Cockroach and various other bugs and creatures.  The thing is, all of these previous pets had one thing in common: mom takes care of them and keeps them alive while everyone else enjoys playing with them. So, we wanted to wait until the boys were old enough to help share in the responsibilities of taking care of a little family member like a dog.

 

Then in early 2011, one of our neighbors adopted a rescue dog and after a few weeks, they started noticing changes in her.  Low and behold, Lindy was pregnant with puppies and had a litter of 4.  Since we had been talking about it anyways and he was so cute, how could we turn down that little thing?  Luckily, 3 of the 4 puppies were adopted in our neighborhood and our life with Cisco began.

 

Fast forward 2 years to early 2013 and little did we know how important Cisco would be to our family.  Prior to Travis’ diagnosis, when he wasn’t feeling so good, Cisco was right there with him.  Then with everything going on with hospital stays and traveling, we thought to ourselves, how are we going to manage taking care of Cisco?  But, no matter what was going on or no matter how long we needed to be gone (whether for a few hours, a day or weeks), we always found a way to make things work.  Who was always there to greet us with such excitement and positive energy?  Our boy Cisco!

 

Good to be home with our therapy dog!

Good to be home with our therapy dog!

Going through all of the hospital visits, no matter how bad things may have been at the time, one positive thing we always looked forward to was the Pet visits.  Whether it was pain, nausea, anxiety or pure exhaustion, as soon as the therapy dogs came in, it was like God was sending his personal angel in to change the situation, and it always worked.  The day we brought Travis home from the hospital after surgery, Travis was worried that Cisco would jump all over him since they hadn’t seen each other in 10 days.  But don’t you know, Cisco sensed the situation and just curled up with Travis on the couch and the two of them slept for hours.  Then when we brought Travis home from Houston, Tyler had Cisco wait in the back yard and it was amazing to see the two of them reunite after 7 weeks.  Cisco has truly been our “Therapy Dog,” not just for Travis but for our entire family.  Happy birthday big boy!

 

Oh…almost forgot, we received the results from Travis’ quarterly MRI he had on Tuesday and everything continues to look clear on the imaging.  Yeah!!! Thank God for such great news!

 

It was a great day!

 

Thanks,

Tony and Lynne

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