January 30th update

Bennett is doing good. His cough has finally gone away, Yeah! Another day of no school but he had basketball practice today for two hours.

We went to the movies tonight to see Mall Cop, it was pretty good.
Bennett spent the night with a friend last night and went to the movies too to see Gran Torino. Hamilton and a couple friends and I went to the Benton movies to see Hotel for Dogs, we loved it! It was really cute.

The boys are taking advantage of any chance they get to play outside and sled around. Hamilton said, this is almost as fun as Christmas break, we have snow but no presents.

Sid doesn’t expect to get back home until next week. They have been working till about 11:00 p.m. and get up around 4:00. He was in the Paducah area today.

Hope everyone has a great weekend, thank you for checking in.

Posted by Cindy on January 30th, 2009 in Updates | 1 Comments

January 28th update

Whew! what a day! Hope everyone is safe and warm! We had about 4 inches of ice and 6 to 8 inches of snow on top of that in Benton. Some towns had a foot of snow. The boys enjoyed playing and sledding outside in the snow. The snow was too fluffy to build a snowman. Hamilton hopes to be able to tomorrow since there is no school again. We closed the bank today in Benton, just way too dangerous. I think that is a first since I have worked there in 23 years.

Bennett has been having trouble going to sleep at night. I’m not sure what is going on, he is tired, he just couldn’t fall asleep.

Sid didn’t come home last night. He slept in his truck for a few hours. He is working in Metropolis. In the deep so IL, there is 14,000 people out of power. I pray for his safety and hope he stays healthy with little sleep and freezing temperatures.

:”Lord, don’t hold back your tender mercies from me, Let your unfailing love and faithfulness always protect me. For troubles surround me – too many to count!” Psalm 40:11

Posted by Cindy on January 28th, 2009 in Updates | Comments Off on January 28th update

January 27th update

The boys were excited to not have school today! And school is already canceled for tomorrow. They played outside sledding with the four wheeler. It doesn’t seem like the sleeting rain is every going to quit! It has kept up most of the day and night here in Benton. Bennett measured tonight, and he got 2 inches of snow/ice. We closed the bank at 2:00 p.m. I didn’t leave till about 4:30 though trying to catch up.

Sid was called out on storm work this afternoon. They met in Anna and went to Dongola. From the news, there is about 3,900 people out of power in that area. We pray for his safety and the people without power.

I talked to Bennett’s nurse today, and she indicated the Dr. reviewed Bennett’s protocol study for his treatment. And that it says not to change his methotrexate pills till the liver levels are over 1,000 or his total billirubin is at 2.0. Right now his liver was 514 and billirubin at .20 so he took he took the normal dose of 10 pills today. We will check counts again on Monday to see where their at. We pray the levels go down. I hate the thought of damaging his liver and causing problems either now or late.

The 6mp chemo pills he takes daily kills his WBC, ANC, Hemoglobin and platelets not the liver. The methotrexate pills that he takes weekly on Tuesday affects the liver and not the other counts.

We had awesome news today that Brittani test showed no rejection of her new lungs!

Hope everyone is staying safe and warm! Don’t get out in this slippery mess!

“You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of Your presence and the pleasures of living with You forever.” Psalm 16:11
Hamilton and a buddy with Bennett driving them around on the sled tonight.

Posted by Cindy on January 27th, 2009 in Updates | 1 Comments

January 26th update

Bennett’s ANC today was 1,403 with 2.3 WBC and 61 neutrophils. It dropped quite a bit but were not surprised because the last test was when he was sick and figured he had an infection is why his WBC were elevated. His hemoglobin was great at 12.6! This is the first time, It has been in normal range! His platelets were also in normal range at 174!

However, his liver levels were way too high! They were 514 from 79 and 149 from 36. It’s concerning that once a month is liver becomes aggravated and his numbers go through the roof. The last time they were in the 500’s were December 2nd.

His nurse is going to have to check with his Dr. and see what she wants to do about his weekly methotrexate dose for tomorrow. Last week he took his normal dose of 10 pills.

Hamilton had a basketball game tonight. They lost by 3. Hamilton played good. Bennett kept score on the scoreboard. Below is Ham in the blue, I only had one picture that turned out. He’s #10 too!

We have already received notification No School for Franklin County! The boys are excited! It’s already covered all the roads with sleet.

Posted by Cindy on January 26th, 2009 in General, Updates | Comments Off on January 26th update

January 25th update

Bennett is doing pretty good. He still is coughing but not as much. It’s hard to stay healthy with these drastic temperature changes.

He has been having heartburn so he went back to taking pepcid daily. It’s been almost a week since he has been off steriods so hopefully it will get better soon.

We have washed everything in the house and washed down counters, door knobs, etc. to help get rid of any viral bugs. Especially since we all have had some type of cold. We’re all doing better except for periodically coughing.

Bennett has a blood test in the morning. We pray for good results.

Our buddy Ethan from SLCH is awaiting test results and we pray that they hear good news.

Thank you for checking in and God Bless!

Posted by Cindy on January 25th, 2009 in Updates | 1 Comments

8th Grade Night

WOW! What a game, we beat West Frankfort tonight at home by about 25 points. All the boys played Great! It was 8th grade night with all the 8th grade cheerleaders and basketball players were recognized along with their parents. I remember last year, I couldn’t watch the 8th graders and their parents because Bennett was supposed to be in that class, graduating that year with his friends, and playing basketball but instead we were getting ready to begin radiation treatments and he wasn’t able to be on the team. It was a special night for our family, we were so proud, thankful and happy that Bennett is well enough to play ball and sometimes pretty good. God is Good!

Bennett played almost all of the game. He had a few rebounds and 4 points. He looked so good, full energy, confidence, and spunk!


Posted by Cindy on January 22nd, 2009 in Updates | 3 Comments

January 21st update

We had another nail biter tonight with the game in DuQuoin, we lost by 2. Bennett played about 2 minutes in the 2nd quarter and few seconds in the third. He had a rebound. The game was pretty physical, it almost looked like we were playing football rather than a basketball game.

Hamilton’s cold is worse. He stayed home from school with his grandparents. He went the the pediatrician and she thought it was viral and didn’t want to give him an antibiotic. I called and pleaded our case that he probably needed an antibiotic since the rest of us started out with the same thing and it turned worse quickly. She gave him amoxicillin. Sid is taking avelox. I got a different antibiotic today to the z pack. Bennett finished taking all of his antibiotic over the weekend. He still coughs some. Today at school, his stomach hurt and his muscles were really sore. I took him some zofran and tylenol around lunch. We pray everyone starts feeling better soon.

“One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord.” Psalm 27:4

Posted by Cindy on January 21st, 2009 in Updates | Comments Off on January 21st update

January 20th update

Bennett is doing good. It seems each day, he is feeling better and his cold is gradually better. Wish I could say the same for the rest of us. Hamilton woke up this morning with a sore throat. Tonight at Bennett’s game, he was so tired and ready to go home.

Bennett’s team lost against Herrin by 3 points. It was a very close game. We didn’t play well and the refs didn’t help us out any. Bennett said Herrin went to the free throw line 23 times and we went 6 times, Wow, kinda one sided. Bennett played about 4 minutes of the 2nd quarter and played the last 3 minutes of the 4th quarter. He had a couple rebounds and with just about a minute left of the game, he shot, and missed, he was fouled but nothing was called. The game was very frustrating for the players, our coach and us fans.

Bennett taped his ankles for the game tonight and wrote “Brittani Nolen”. We pray for her recovery and that her new set of lungs gives her an incredible life!

“I can do all things through Christ who strengtheneth me.” Phillippians 4:13

Posted by Cindy on January 20th, 2009 in Updates | Comments Off on January 20th update

January 19th update

Bennett slept in today since they didn’t have school. And he didn’t have a blood test. We will check counts next Monday, hopefully they will stay good so we can keep on a bi-weekly schedule.

Bennett finished his last dose of steroids Saturday. He indicated his bones feel sore and thinks it’s from the steroids.

Sid’s cold and cough are the same. He still doesn’t feel good. His x-rays shows he has mild case of pleurisy. He has been on an antibiotic for several days and will continue. I have managed to start coughing and have a sore throat for most of the weekend. I started an antibiotic Saturday so hopefully it won’t turn into anything. So far, Hamilton doesn’t have it.

Hamilton had a future Rangers basketball game tonight and they won. Bennett was able to go and kept the score board.

Bennett had basketball practice today for couple hours. He has three games this week. Tomorrow night we play in Herrin, Wednesday in DuQuoin and Thursday is his last home game. We pray that he continues to feel better and gains his strength back. He had been lifting weights but hasn’t the last couple of days because of being so tired.

“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” 1 John 4:7-8

Posted by Cindy on January 19th, 2009 in Updates | Comments Off on January 19th update

Another miracle from God!

Our dearest friend Brittani Shurtz Nolen is on her way to St. Louis Children’s Hospital for her 2nd lung transplant. She has been waiting patiently to be called for a new set of lungs for the last few months. She will be in surgery this evening.

This is her 2nd and last transplant. We pray that God keeps her strong to make it through surgery and that her body accepts the new set of lungs.

Thank you to Brittani’s donor and bless their family. Please give the gift of life and register to be a organ/tissue donor. You must sign up through the new registry to be legally binding. Call 800-210-2106, visit any driver services facility or visit www.LifeGoesOn.com

Posted by Cindy on January 19th, 2009 in Updates | Comments Off on Another miracle from God!

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