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Great Memes and Blog Carnivals:

Families Again
Monday, 7 November 2011
Gratitude Challenge - Thanking God for My Oldest Being Cancer Free!
Mood:  happy
Topic: Blog Carnivals!

Today is a great anniversary!


No, not my wedding anniversary.


No, I'm not talking about a birthday either.


I'm talking about a real anniversary milestone.


What is it?


Today we mark 14 years of John Allen, our oldest, being cancer free!


It was 14 years ago on Halloween that John Allen was diagnosed with Retinoblastoma. Retinoblastoma is a rare eye cancer that almost always occurs in children under the age of two.


I remember when he was diagnosed. We, of course, were devastated. The only thing the doctor said was that it was a fast growing cancer that needed to be taken care of right away. The office made an appointment with the specialist at Vanderbilt, but we couldn't get in until the next Wednesday - five days away.




If this was a fast growing cancer we wanted to get in their right away! We didn't want to wait five days. We decided to travel to Sarah's grandparent's house to get away for the weekend to gather our thoughts. We found some old medical journals and looked up Retinoblastoma. They said that John Allen had a 25% chance that he might die! That made us even more frantic.


We began making calls to see if we could get into St. Jude's. Yes, it was further away, but what was a six hour trip compared to our baby's life?


Finally a good friend contacted us. She remembered she had a friend in college with an artificial eye. She called him up and found out that he had Retinoblastoma as a child as well. And, his parents had just moved to Nashville six weeks before. His parents wanted us to call them so we did.


Patsy was so kind. She told us to keep the appointment at Vanderbilt and she would meet us there.


The day of the appointment came. The doctor examined John Allen's eye and, we could tell, was trying to prepare us for something. We were thinking the worst. Finally she hesitantly said that she thought that it would be best if they enucleated John Allen's eye. She then waited for us to break down. Instead she got the shock of her life. We were overjoyed. Our baby wasn't going to die! She didn't know that we had read Medical Journals that were hopelessly outdated.


She must have thought we were crazy. I'm sure she doesn't get too many parents who are happy that their child is going to lose an eye. What was an eye compared to our son's life?


Patsy and her husband Lynn allowed us to stay at their house for the next four nights. Patsy came with us the next day, Thursday, for MRI's and CAT Scans and visits with the oncologist and visits with another eye specialist who would be doing the surgery. She patiently explained things that we didn't understand. After all, she had been through it all with her son. We are, to this day, so very thankful for Patsy and Lynn and their graciousness and love toward us.


Finally, John Allen's eye was removed on Friday, November 7, 1997. Fourteen years ago today. After spending the night in the hospital we were able to come home the next day. We found out later that the cancer had covered almost 90% of John Allen's eye and had started on the optic nerve. If it would have gone up the optic nerve to the brain there is nothing they could have done.



John Allen is 15 years old now. He's almost as tall as I am and has been cancer free for 14 years!


So, today for the Gratitude Challenge I want to thank God for sparing our son and healing him from cancer.


Thank you Lord, for being the great physician.

Thank you for being a loving God.

Thank you for being a God that heals.

Thank you for our son, John Allen. Amen

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Posted by tink38570 at 10:34 PM CST
Updated: Monday, 7 November 2011 10:40 PM CST
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Friday, 4 November 2011
Gratitude Challenge
Mood:  happy
Topic: Blog Carnivals!


Tonight I want to thank God for our international children:

Marcelo from Bolivia

Feyber from Colombia

Somi from Indonesia

Emmanuel from Tanzania

Ismael from Nicaragua

Yvone from Rwanda

These are all of our Compassion children in the order in which they were adopted into our family. Marcelo we have supported for almost two and a half years now and Yvone for just nine months. Marcelo we support financially and the rest we are correspondence supporters for. But, we love them all the same. They are all special to us. From Marcelo - who wants us to pray for his parents to go to church with him - to Feyber - who, after some encouragement from me - is beginning to read his Bible more - to Somi - who is fascinated with every snow picture that I send to him because he's never seen snow - to Emmanuel - our oldest child for whom I am praying for a Godly wife - to Ismael - our youngest child who has to have his teacher write letters for him but draws wonderful pictures for us - to Yvone - our only daughter - who calls us her Mother and Father - we love them all dearly and we pray for them all affectionately.

Thank you, Lord, for our wonderful Compassion children. Please bless them all right now whether they are sleeping or awake. Thank you for Compassion International who is rescuing children from poverty one child at a time. Please raise up more supporters for children who are still waiting for the love of a sponsor. Amen

If you would like to share the joy and love we have for our Compassion children, please click here to get to the Compassion International website.

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Posted by tink38570 at 11:04 PM CDT
Updated: Friday, 4 November 2011 11:10 PM CDT
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Wednesday, 2 November 2011
An Attitude of Gratitude!
Mood:  a-ok
Topic: Blog Carnivals!

A friend of mine from the TOS Homeschool Crew has hosted the Gratitude Challenge during the month of November the past couple of years. The challenge is for folks to think about all of the ways God has blessed them in their lives. If your a blogger, the challenge is for you to blog as much as you can about the things you are thankful for and then link it to the Gratitude Challenge homepage where others can click on your link to see what you are grateful for. I decided to participate this year. It's always good to remember God's blessings.

The first thing that I am grateful for is the sacrifice that Jesus made on the cross. He died so that we could live for him. All we have to do is believe that we need a Savior - we can't do it on our own. In fact, we can't do anything on our own to gain entrance to Heaven. We just need to trust that Jesus died for us and accept His free gift of salvation. I am forever thankful for God's gift of eternal life. Without Him, I would be nothing. Thank you Lord.

If you would like to participate in the Gratitude Challenge, or if you want to read what others are thankful for, just click on the banner above. And, all year long, but especially at this time of year, don't forget to have "An Attitude of Gratitude".


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Posted by tink38570 at 11:21 PM CDT
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Tuesday, 13 September 2011
I'm a TOS Blog Hop Host! Come join the fun!
Mood:  incredulous
Topic: Blog Carnivals!

Crew Blog Hop

I am super excited to be a host for this month's edition of the TOS Crew Blog Hop! You've heard me talk about the TOS Homeschool Crew a lot. It's the team of homeschool bloggers that review great homeschool products on their blogs. Well, even though the team for 2011-12 has been chosen, you can still get involved by joining in the blog hop.

This months theme is "Not-Back-To-School" but don't let the name of the theme fool you. The blog hop folks have tried really hard to choose themes that are vague and open. You can really write about anything that has anything to do with the theme.

  • What do you do on the weekends?
  • What do you do at night time?
  • Do you take field trips during the year?
  • It's past the "back to school" time. What is your regular schedule like?
  • How do you beat the "every day is the same old boring thing blues" after the newness has worn off?

Those are just a few of the topics that you can choose. And, you don't even have to write something new. If you've already written something that fits the theme, then link that post up. Really, the sky is the limit. All we want you to do is join us and have fun. The blog hop officially starts tomorrow, but I thought I would post about it tonight to give you all a heads up. Below are the guidelines. Have fun!    

The Guidelines for participating in the TOS Crew blog hop are as follows:

1. Please grab the blog hop button to spread the word.

<a href="http://www.linkytools.com/wordpress_list.aspx?id=106247&type=thumbnail" mce_href="http://www.linkytools.com/wordpress_list.aspx?id=106247&type=thumbnail" target="_blank"><img class="alignleft" title="Crew Blog Hop" src="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/devildogwife97/Blog%20Pics/Design%20Elements/WheelBlogHopButtonVBlue-1-1.png" mce_src="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v605/devildogwife97/Blog%20Pics/Design%20Elements/WheelBlogHopButtonVBlue-1-1.png" alt="Crew Blog Hop"></a>

2. Please follow our wonderful hosts – Families Again, Marine Corps Nomads, Faith, Family, and Fun, and Training Children up for Christ as well as the 2 blogs in front of your link.

3. Please link directly to your blog hop post. Our theme for this month is Not-Back-To-School.

4. Please do not link up your giveaways, blog hops, etc. (These will be deleted.)

Link up your blog, visit and follow the blogs that interest you and have fun getting to know the 2011-2012 TOS Crew as well as the other participating homeschoolers. If you follow our blogs and leave a comment, we will follow you back! (Since we're all homeschoolers, it may take us a few days to follow everyone back. Thanks for your understanding.)

Now, let’s get blog hoppin’ and have some fun! You only need to add your link to one linky for it to show up on all participating blogs. Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list...

Past Crew Blog Hops: August 2011 - Getting to Know You

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Posted by tink38570 at 10:07 PM CDT
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Thursday, 1 September 2011
It's Time for "I" at Destination Disney
Mood:  happy
Topic: Blog Carnivals!

I really need to look up some of my old pictures of Disney World and scan them in to my laptop. I know I have some pictures of my favorite "I" things at Disney. But, for right now, internet pictures and one YouTube video will have to suffice.

I decided to pick one "I" thing from each of the Disney World parks with one "cheat" which I will reveal when I get to it. Here goes:

The Magic Kingdom - It would have to be It's a Small World. By now, you know that many of my memories of Disney come from the trips and adventures we had there with my family when i was young. It's a Small World  was one of my parents favorites and it is one of mine as well. I can't wait to introduce it to my kids when we go this spring. I found this YouTube video of this classic ride. It doesn't really do it justice...no video could...but I think you will see why it's one of my favorites.

Epcot - It would have to be the Italy Pavilion in World Showcase. I think I reminisced in a previous post that I worked at Disney when I was in college (and before and after). I became friends with many of the foreign students that attended and would often take a group in during an afternoon or a whole day just to visit one of the parks. One of our favorite stops was World Showcase and eating at one of the really authentic restaurants. Italy was one of the number one choices. Great food and great memories.

Disney's Hollywood Studios - It is hands down Indiana Jone's Stuntman Spectacular. At least that's what they used to call it. I'm not sure if it's even there anymore. That has always been one of the favorites of Sarah and mine. Awesome recollections of date days at the studio and watching this great show. I found out years later that one of my former student's from the private school that I taught at played Indiana Jones in the show for a little while. He was a great gymnast, so I don't doubt it at all!

Animal Kingdom - Okay, here's my cheat! I really couldn't think of anything from this park so I picked something that, at least I think, can be found at all of the parks. Here it is:

Yep! It's a Mickey Mouse Ice Cream Bar. They are delicious and a must have for any trip to Disney World.

Well, there you have my favorite "I" things from WDW. Don't forget to check out the other Destination Disney contributors for this week by clicking on the banner at the top. See you next week for my "J" favorites. Could "Jungle Cruise" be one of them?!? You'll have to wait and see.

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Posted by tink38570 at 11:28 PM CDT
Updated: Friday, 2 September 2011 8:13 AM CDT
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