Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Updates - Cancer, family, etc.

It has been pretty busy these last few weeks.

My mother had her lumpectomy to remove the cancer and all tests have come back looking positive towards a full recovery. She had genetic testing and results show she is not carrying the cancer gene which was very good news. She starts radiation treatments tomorrow which will continue for about 6 weeks.

My grandmother passed away peacefully in her home. Although it is sad for her to be gone, she is in a much better place now. It has been hard the last several years with her not recognizing us due to her Alzheimer's disease. Hopefully she is reunited with the loved ones that passed before her. It was nice to see extended family even though it would have been better under different circumstances.

May is always busy with the school year wrapping up. We've had Teacher Appreciation Week and are truly thankful for the wonderful job the teachers do in our school. Collieville Elementary is a great school and my kids love it!

Kelly has started practicing with the POM team and absolutely loves it. Right now all she wants to do is dance! I hope the enthusiasm sticks with her.

Carleigh wants to play tennis and swim this summer. She is looking forward to having lots of fun!

I am looking forward to spending this summer at home with my wonderful kids. This will be my time to reflect, de-stress and just completely enjoy my break! I can tell I sure need one! I hope you enjoy your summer as well!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Kelly is a Memphis Elite Pom Dancer!

Yeah! I'm so happy for Kelly! She made the Memphis Elite Junior Pom/Dance Team. She is soooo excited! I haven't seen her this excited about an extra-curricular activity in a long time. Of course, that is subject to change at any time, but she really does love the kind of dancing/moving that the pom squad does. AND naturally, she gets all that rhythm and talent from me! Ok, anybody who really knows me and has seen me dance can get off the floor now and quit he-hawing! I have a lot of coordination for sports, but don't ask me to move my hips one way and my shoulders a different way and by the way, where in the world would my mid-section be going while my hips and shoulders are moving in different direction???? Why, I can't even clap to a beat, much less dance to one!

Anyway, back to the point....My understanding is that the owner and coaches of this team are very talented and they win a lot of National Championships for both cheer and dance. Matter of fact, one of the Mem Elite dance teams got their expenses paid to Worlds because they did so well. The dance coach is also the coach for the U of Memphis Dance team as well. Because of this, Kelly will most likely get a chance to perform a half-time show at a U of Memphis Tigers home game at some point and I KNOW she will be very excited about doing that.

My niece, Ashley, wanted to know what Pom is since a lot of schools just have Cheer. Pom is a lot like Cheer, but they do not usually do the "stunts" or gymnastics/back-hand-springs/pyramids, back-tucks, etc. that cheerleaders do. They usually perform with pom-poms (cheerleaders do sometimes when they aren't doing heavy stunting) but POM incorporates more dance moves rather than stunts. They will sometimes do hip-hop and jazz performances and sometimes they will look a lot like cheer performances with just slight differences (like adding dance techniques minus the stunts). I'm not a Pom "guru", that's just what I've gathered from VERY FEW observations. Anyhoo.....I'm just happy because Kelly is happy!!!

Grandmother (Mama Anne)

My Grandmother (Mama Anne to us, Mimi to the other grandchildren) is not doing very well at all. She has had Alzheimer's disease for many, many years but her over-all health has been very good until the last year or so. Really until the last 6 to 9 months ago. My aunt called a couple of weeks ago to tell us that she had basically stopped eating, talking and walking and was just drinking liquids and lying in the bed. Friday she called to say she was even worse, then today she said it was possible that she wouldn't make it through the night.

We went to see her tonight (Saturday) after Kelly's soccer game and it was sad to see her in that condition. She has episodes where she will stop breathing for about 15 to 25 seconds; enough to get you extremely concerned, but then she will start breathing again. She is a fighter so it is possible that she can hang in there for another couple of days, but you hate for her to suffer. We plan to see her again tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Never thought I would be posting about this, but Kelly has become interested in Pom. She tried out for Collierville Middle school Pom but only 2 5th graders made it (for 6th grade next year). They had 43 or so people try out and 25 girls made it. They are usually the National Champions for Pom (or so I'm told) for that age group. We heard about Memphis Elite in Cordova and she is trying out for them this week. The coaches from Memphis Elite are also the coaches for Collierville Middle School Pom so she should at least be more prepared next year for CMS POM if she makes the Mem Elite team. Of course, all of this costs money, so if she doesn't make it....well, just less money to be spent for our one income family!

Mom's Cancer Update

Mom has been in Houston at MD Anderson since last Monday. She had to be at the hospital at 6:30 this morning (Tuesday) for surgery pre-work and her surgery was scheduled for around noon. The surgery was delayed until around 3:15 and she was starving since she wasn't allowed to have anything to eat or drink after midnight the night before. They performed a lumpectomy and it went well. They tested the lymph nodes and we will know the final results of those later but initial signs look good. She was out of surgery around 5:30 and into the recovery room after that. She was very hard to wake up after surgery; it took quite a bit longer than expected before she "came to" around 7:45. By 9:00 she was able to eat and sit up and watch t.v. but they are keeping her overnight. So all in all, the surgery seems to have been successful. Angela is with her and says that MD Anderson has been just wonderful to them and does an excellent job.

Truman - large paint pony for sale or lease

If any of you know anybody looking to buy or lease (full lease or half lease) a large paint pony for jumpers or hunter/jumpers let me know. My girls aren't riding him enough to keep him and I was layed off from my job. The combination means he needs to go! He is beautiful and sweet so I really don't want to sell him but....tough times call for tough decisions! Let me know if you know of anybody!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Simply Perfect Pancakes

I haven't tried these, but they got good reviews so I wanted to keep and share the recipe.

Malt, rather than sugar, is what sweetens most food-service (i.e., restaurant/hotel) pancake mixes. For that typical "diner" taste, try malt in your pancakes instead of sugar.

Our guarantee: These pancakes will go together easily, and make a tender, flavorful pancake.

Ingredients View by: Volume Weight
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups milk
3 tablespoons melted butter or vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar OR 1/4 cup malted milk powder
2 large eggs
10 ounces milk
1 1/2 ounces melted butter or vegetable oil
6 1/2 ounces King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar OR 1/4 cup malted milk powder

1. Beat the eggs and milk until light and foamy, about 3 minutes at high speed of a stand or hand mixer. Stir in the butter or vegetable oil.

2. Whisk the dry ingredients together to evenly distribute the salt, baking powder and sweetener.

3. Gently and quickly mix into the egg and milk mixture. Let the batter rest for at least 15 minutes, while the griddle is heating; it"ll thicken slightly.

4. Heat a heavy frying pan over medium heat, or set an electric griddle to 350°F. Lightly grease frying pan or griddle. The pan or griddle is ready if a drop of water will skitter across the surface, evaporating immediately.

5. Drop 1/3 cupfuls of batter onto the lightly greased griddle. Bake on one side until bubbles begin to form and break, then turn the pancakes and cook the other side till brown. Turn over only once. Serve immediately.

Recipe summary
Hands-on time:
10 mins.
Baking time:
20 mins.
Total time:
45 mins.
2 dozen 3-inch pancakes

Tips from our bakers
To make waffles, substitute 2 tablespoons melted butter or vegetable oil for 2 tablespoons of the milk. Cook waffles as directed with your waffle iron. Hint - if you try to open the iron and it doesn't open easily, the waffle isn't done yet.

For a whole grain breakfast treat, replace 1/2 cup of the all-purpose flour with 1/2 cup of ground oats.

A grated apple mixed into the batter will keep the pancakes moist longer if you need to cook them ahead and bring them to the table all at once

For blueberry pancakes, sprinkle fresh or thawed frozen blueberries over the batter after you pour it on the griddle. Mixing frozen blueberries into the batter before scooping will turn it blue and streaky.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size One pancake
Servings Per Batch 24
Amount Per Serving
Calories 50 Calories from Fat 20
Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g
Saturated Fat 1g
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 20mg
Sodium 130mg
Total Carbohydrate 7g
Dietary Fiber 0g
Sugars 2g
Protein 2g
* The nutrition information provided for each recipe is determined by the ESHA Genesis R&D software program. Substituting any ingredients may change the posted nutrition information.