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Surgery on the Horizon

I really can’t believe that it is almost August.  I don’t know about you but I feel like this summer is flying by way too fast.  I just realized the kids go back to school in one month, Frazierstock is in about three weeks, next week will mark Round 12 and it appears the last infusion until surgery.  The infusion I receive every three weeks is a medicine called Avastin and it needs to be at least six weeks out of my system before we can do surgery.  I will continue on the oral chemo.  I met with Dr. Genyk at USC on July 19th.  Anda, Nikki and I were prepared for the worst and poised for the best.  It turns out Dr. Genyk has a great bedside manner and we all really liked him.  He spent 45 minutes with us and in the end said lets get this surgery scheduled.  I’m still a little in shock and cautious but know deep in my heart he will be able to get whatever cancer is left.  I still need an MRI on my liver and a stress test but as of today the date of complete cancer eradication is September 19th!  Unfortunately, he will have to completely open me up.  Someone said to me well there is always one piece bathing suit.  My response heck no the scar will be my badge of honor and survivorship!  Bring it on!

Post surgery there will be additional chemo but when they get it all, I will actually have a chemo end date, which will be so awesome, because so far there has been no end date in sight.  I really can’t complain too much given how well my body has handled the chemo but it would sure be nice to have my hands and feet back to normal.  I know it won’t happen quickly and it is going to take some time for all the chemicals to get out of my system but I will do whatever I can to expedite that process. My ultimate plan is remission forever and statistics blown out of the water.

After our appointment with the surgeon we headed to try a class at Soul Cycle.  None of us had ever been and Nikki and Anda had never done spin so I knew we were in for some fun.  LOL.  It turned out to be awesome, well, at least I thought it was awesome.  They turn the lights out.  The instructor puts on killer music and seriously inspires you to spin your ass off.  If you get a chance you should try it.  We decided after each LA appointment we will do a different workout and push ourselves outside of the comfort zone.  Next pick is Nikki’s.


Keiki Paddle


Last weekend marked the 6th Annual Keiki Paddle.  The paddle benefited Samuel Helfand and the Gwendolyn Strong Foundation.  Gwendolyn was of course at the event with her ever amazing parents and Samuel lead the paddlers to shore.  The emotion I felt from the time I arrived at East Beach till we packed up and headed home is hard to explain.  I saw many people at the paddle that I haven’t spoken to since my cancer journey began and others who introduced themselves to me and told me they have been following my journey and sending love and prayers to my family.  It just doesn’t get better than that.  The love and positive energy of everyone who attended was incredible.  Seeing Samuel in the water with his friends leading in the pack was amazing.


At the end of the afternoon I sat on the beach as the girls played in the waves and Jon took them out on the paddle board.  It occurred to me once again how lucky we are to live in such a stunning place with so many remarkable people.  We are so blessed.



Thank you to the Chiarappa, Jaimes and Fell families for hosting such a fun evening and to those who donated to benefit our family.  I can’t forget to thank Kristi Gordnier for taking such beautiful pictures of the event.  The setting and evening could not have been anymore perfect.  The company of course was fabulous and the food looked awesome although not quite on my diet but guess what they thought of everything and I received a special delivery from my dear friend, Crista Fooks, Kale Salad from Scarlett Begonia.

I think this picture pretty much sums up how I felt about the evening!



If you haven’t heard the Running of the Guard is on Sunday and is benefitting our family.  It should be a fun and adventurous event.  Thank you Rich and Rick!!  Here are the details:

Who: Anyone who loves to run and swim!! Or is just up for a fun challenge!

What: Run, Swim, Run, Swim, Run, Swim??? East Beach to Carpinteria – I hear its about a 9 mile run

When: Sunday July 28, 2013

Where: East Beach Bath House   11:00 am Start

How Much: $30                              

Amtrak: 769 Pacific Surfliner Departs Carpinteria at 2:41 pm  Arrives Santa Barbara at 3:00 pm Cost $8

RSVP:  Rick Hubbard rhubbard@santabarbaraca.gov

Rich Hanna rhanna@santabarbraca.gov

This weekend is truly shaping up to be awesome.  Tomorrow paddling at 10:30 am, come on down and join us.  Sunday Running of the Guards followed by an evening with my fabulous friend Krista at the Justin Timberlake/JayZ concert and then Monday I head to Ojai Valley Spa to hang out with Jody and Dianna.  Pure Bliss.  I love my life.

Self Reflection

As I have been going through this journey I have been taking a lot of time to look at my life, who I am and who I want to be, what characteristics do I like and what characteristics might need some work because lets face it we can always improve who we are and how we live our lives.  I found this poem/quote that seems to encapsulate all that I have been pondering and thought that I would share it with you.

Promise Yourself

To be so strong that nothing
can disturb your peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness, and prosperity
to every person you meet.

To make all your friends feel
that there is something in them
To look at the sunny side of everything
and make your optimism come true.

To think only the best, to work only for the best,
and to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others
as you are about your own.

To forget the mistakes of the past
and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
To wear a cheerful countenance at all times
and give every living creature you meet a smile.

To give so much time to the improvement of yourself
that you have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear,
and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

To think well of yourself and to proclaim this fact to the world,
not in loud words but great deeds.
To live in faith that the whole world is on your side
so long as you are true to the best that is in you
― Christian D. LarsonYour Forces and How to Use Them

Hugs and Kisses,


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