Thursday, April 30, 2015
I tell ya, I have some pretty special friends out there.
Case in point, we came home to a big box on our front porch.
My dear (and obviously very thoughtful) friend, Cathy Downing Kindberg
and I worked together at KPNX in Phoenix many years ago.
She has been blessed with several grandsons-- but no granddaughters.
Therefore, she thought it would be fun to do a little girl shopping
and spoil a trio of x chromosomes.
The girls were thrilled with their jewelry kits, art projects
and drawing books.
They will be busy all summer!
And even though Kean isn't one of the "Barker Girls" the box
was addressed to-- he certainly wasn't left out.
He immediately started gobbling down on BACON JERKY.
Didn't know it even existed until then-- but he's hooked.
Cathy also spoiled him with a set of farm animals, which is great.
He's become quite the master at making the sounds the animals make.
And finally, both Holland and Greer had
their big science fair at school tonight.
Months of torturing mom with these projects
has finally come to an end.
So nice to have this off our plate.
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
This is one of those days I'm so glad is over.
Kean wouldn't wake up this morning
and had another one of those Hypoglycemic episodes
where he is cold, clammy, and near comatose.
My girls have it down to a routine.
Reese grabs Kleenex to hold on his finger
after I take a little blood sample,
Greer grabs the camera to document it for the doctor
and Holland gets a cup of Orange Juice ready.
The girls are truly superstars. They got their own
breakfasts, made their school lunches and got ready and out
the door while I held Kean, tried to get him to drink and eat
and talked with the doctor.
I can't wait for his Chemo to be over and done with.
His Endocrinologist thinks these episodes will go away too.
I loose five years of my life each time we go through this.
We are lucky though, after an hour or so, he's totally back
He had horse therapy and speech therapy and did quite well.
You'd never even know there had been so much drama in the house!
It seems we must have a magnet for drama.
Kean's horse therapist, Candice (the one who lost
her horse and the baby during birth) started having
some pretty serious pre-term labor signs today.
So guess who got to take her to the hospital this afternoon? Me!
I was going already for a meeting and so it worked out great.
She saw her doctor two floors up from where I met with Kean's.
So quick update-- all is well with Candice and her baby.
And my meeting? It was with the Neurophsychologist
that was trying to give Kean an IQ test when he lost
it and then I lost it a few weeks back in her office.
She gave me the report she is giving to the state
to make sure Kean continues to qualify for therapy.
Anyway, her report was BRILLIANT!
She totally took the state of Idaho to task
for wasting time, money and resources by requiring
a child with Down syndrome who is currently undergoing
treatment for cancer to go through this ridiculous testing!!!
She's my new hero.
It was sure nice to have my exact feelings validated!
Sunday, April 26, 2015
You missed out on one of the most highly anticipated events
of the year (well, at least in the eyes of Greer).
Barker Bingo Night.
The Moomey's came over...
and Greer, who had organized everything,
called out the letters and numbers-
and had even saved her money, gone shopping
and put together the prize table.
Trust me, all stuff you can't live without.
And if you are waiting for the big hint as to who will
be headlining Baldapalooza, our children's cancer fundraiser-
here it is.
Tune into ABC's Dancing With the Stars
on Monday night
and see if you can't guess our big shot guest.
Saturday, April 25, 2015
It was supposed to be rainy and windy all day.
At least it didn't get windy until late this afternoon.
So for much of the day, Kean just wanted to be outside.
He wasn't much help pulling weeds.
But he is quite skilled, if I do say so, at digging in the rocks.
Yesterday, we had a big meeting at the headquarters of Scentsy.
Looks like that's where we will be holding our Baldapalooza this year.
They have the perfect grounds for a concert (can even hold
up to 7000).
We are making the final arrangements to announce who ouf
big headliner is on radio later this week.
But tell you what, tomorrow I'll drop a really big hint.
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
A much needed one.
Kean got a Joy Jar in the mail .
If you are not familiar with these little goody filled boxes,
they come from the Jessie Rees foundation.
Jessie was a girl who fought bravely against cancer and lost.
In her memory, her family sends jars filled with toys and gifts
out regularly to kids like Kean.
I think this is Kean's third Joy Jar-- and it was filled with all kinds
of goodies-- a toy truck, a "Never Ever Give Up-- NEGU" bracelet,
and hat, play dough, a coloring kit, a ball, toys, a stuffed animal and
a Lego kit that Reese was so excited to put together.
As I said, the timing couldn't have been better.
We are going on a solid week (feels like about 7 years)
We are going on a solid week (feels like about 7 years)
that Kean has been 90 percent ornery.
Can't figure out why. He's not on Steroids for another two weeks
but geez, he sure acts like he is.
Fingers crossed tomorrow he will be through this "phase".
Monday, April 20, 2015
Whether we wanted it to come or not, Holland is now 14.
I'm sure she's anxious to grow up-- me? Not so much.
She moves to a new age group in church and her leaders
came by to spoil her...
with the cutest candy letter all about her.
I just wanted to kiss her when she asked for donuts
instead of me making her a cake.
I did go all out on her dinner though...
We had the Bodily's up (our neighbors and honorary
Grandparents). Hopefully, Holland wasn't too
disappointed that her wish didn't come true and she still didn't get a cell phone.
(She is trying to convince us she is the last 14 year old
on the earth who still doesn't have one).
I had to throw this picture in--
Kean was for once digging on the sweets.
Usually, he's all about the salty (can we say bacon?).
I was almost tempted to leave that little mustache on.
Today, he was definitely a donut man.
Kean, by the way, practiced saying "Happy Birthday Hottie"
We got it on video-- it wasn't his best rendition-- but we got it.
Can't get my head around the fact our little princess has bigger
feet than me now!
Happy Birthday dear Hottie!
Sunday, April 19, 2015
So Holland turns 14 tomorrow.
Yowza, she just won't stop growing up on us.
Case in point, we let her escape the chicken coop
and go on a road trip with nine of her friends (and three moms to chaperone).
The girls ditched school on Friday,
drove down to Salt Lake City went swimming and out to dinner.
Then they spent all day Saturday at Lagoon
(kind of like a Six Flags).
This was their big "about to graduate from 8th grade
and they finished PACE -- a huge project--" party.
Happy Birthday eve to my beautiful, intelligent, kind hearted daughter!
I'm pinching myself that she's getting so old, while I continue to not age.
Ha!!! Denial, I know.
Saturday, April 18, 2015
We are so very, very sad here today.
Do you remember Kean's first horse love, Reba?
She was the five year old mare he started horse therapy lessons
on about two years ago.
It took him a little bit of time to warm up to her.
But for Reba-- it was instant.
She was young, wild and wiggly until Kean got on her back
and then she was as gentle and calm as if she knew she
was carrying the most precious of loads.
(And she was).
Kean would pull her hair, poke her nose and give her
big bear hug, head locks.
(Reese was much gentler).
But she'd take it all and not even flinch.
Kean hasn't been riding her lately-- he's been on Romeo
because Reba was pregnant with her first.
She went into labor last week and we hoped she would have
her baby while we were there at lessons on Wednesday.
She looked so good.
We got word today from Candice that neither Reba, nor the baby
How very, very sad.
Friday, April 17, 2015
Sixteen years ago, just after Byron and I were married,
we went back to LA so I could "play" a newscaster
for a Batman cartoon called Batman Beyond.
How in the world did I get this sweet gig you may ask?
The lady I sold my house to in Toluca Lake, California
just so happened to be the head of casting for Warner Brothers animation.
I said yes.
It was not a condition of closing, by the way.
It was such a fun day.
And they even paid me over two thousand dollars
to read about four sentences.
As if that wasn't bonus enough, I still get a check
from Warner Brother's for residuals-- about 30 bucks every quarter.
(I totally would have done it for free).
Now for the rest of the story.... (my apologies to Paul Harvey)
I got a message on Facebook last week from a guy asking if he could
send me a picture to get my autograph.
Can you believe that? All these years later-
and the funny part is he lives on the other side of the Valley.
Instead of giving out my address, I offered to meet him.
He brought two copies of the picture-- one for me to keep
and one for me to autograph.
It was fascinating to meet James.
He has spent the last 11 years collecting over 400 autographs
from all things Batman (movies, TV shows, cartoons) and he
still has more to get on his quest.
Here's what's wild-- he knew so much more about the episode--
Lost Soul than I did. And I was in it!!!
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Those silly "weather guessers" here in Idaho.
Supposedly we were only to have 5 mile per hour winds today.
It was downright blustery and blow you away kind of weather.
Horse Therapy didn't last too long outside.
It was miserable.
So we moved into the arena
where Kean (my little adrenaline junkie) just
wanted to "trot, trot, trot".
We may have looked like doof's trying to keep up with
Kean and Romeo
but oh was it worth it.
He giggled the entire session.
Huge news on the Baldapalooza front.
Yes, we are doing it again.
Yes, we have been trying since November to book our headliner
yep, today, we made the deal.
I'm gonna be a brat and not tell you who it is quite yet.
We are working on a big unveil because we booked
someone big time
and I couldn't be more excited.
SAVE THE DATE:
August 29th-- a Saturday.
p.s. that is two weeks before Kean finishes 3 plus years
I can't think of a better way to celebrate
and we want YOU there with us!!!
Posted by Lonni Leavitt-Barker at 10:02 PM
Tuesday, April 14, 2015
We had another doctor's appointment.
I can't complain about this one.
Kean didn't have to have any tests, get any shots
or give any blood.
In fact, it went about as well as a doctor's appointment can go.
We saw his Endocrinologist-- the doc who is trying to figure
out why Kean keeps having those Hypoglycemic seizures.
Typically we see them when he doesn't eat well, then takes
his nightly Chemo (which he has take fasting at night).
Then he won't wake up in the morning, is sweaty, clammy
and totally non-responsive.
It is incredibly frightening but now that we know it is caused
by low blood sugar when he doesn't eat, it has eased the fear a bit.
(I still am spitting adrenalin trying to revive him each time it happens).
Anyway, he's had several of those episodes, especially just after heavy Chemo
when we can hardly get him to do anything other than cry-- let alone eat.
Kean threw me for a loop a month ago when he ate a ton of food at dinnertime
and then wouldn't wake up the next morning and had all those
horrible symptoms/side effects.
Dr. Flynn put me at ease today with his thoughts that there is not something else
wrong-- but that his body is just under so much stress with the cancer that
he can't hang onto any extra energy to keep his levels up during the night.
The doc assured me this problem will likely go away once he's done
Yippee!!! Another huge reason to celebrate come September.
We did, by the way get a prescription for- and in - office training
on how to give Kean a shot in the leg to get him to come around
when he is non-responsive and won't drink orange juice etc.
Joy, another prescription to pick up (and add to our impressive collection).
Meanwhile, tonight was Holland's Medical High School's orientation.
I'm still in shock she'll be in high school next year.
Greer went with us-- and was more than willing to pose
in the perfect light after our storm.
She's a keeper, I tell ya.
Sunday, April 12, 2015
Finally we have good news to report.
The boy has turned a corner.
Today he was smiley...
I swear, just in time.
If he kept up this whimpering all through the night
and whining all through the day-- you'd soon find
me drooling on myself in the corner of a room
(waiting for the guys in white to take me away).
Now we can focus on trying to keep his enormous
appetite under control.
I swear he must open the refrigerator
at least 16 times an hour.
Most often, minutes after pounding down a meal.
It is really quite staggering.
I won't miss those Steroids when this is all over.