Saturday, February 28, 2015

FaceTime with his older brother

Checking out a new level that Logan is playing.... :)

Friday, February 27, 2015

Some good news

"Mom, you're totally going to lose" (Callum says, as we play a new game).

So we got some good news today. Our doctor returned from his conference and examined the cells in question (from Monday's LP) himself, and isn't concerned. He says he wouldn't even have labeled them blasts (which is what the lab tech had reported them as), but would call them immature cells, and a result from the infection Callum is fighting, nothing more.

He's seen this happen many times before and the number of cells that showed up on Callum's results is so insignificant it doesn't warrant another LP check, in his opinion. (In fact, had he not been out of town, it sounds like he probably wouldn't have even mentioned it to us, to save us the grief)

So, our LP for next week has been canceled. And we are back to "normal" (other than still being in the hospital!).

I feel like we've really been through the ringer this week. So I'm still a bit nervous, but am happy to hear the good news and am glad our doctor reviewed our case himself.

Callum's counts did drop again today - so because of that and this little hiccup with the cultures, means we get to stay another day. But, assuming the cultures remain negative tomorrow, regardless of counts, it sounds like we may finally get discharged.

I'm not holding my breath. ;-) But it WOULD be nice to finally sleep in my own bed once more. :)

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Looking for the silver lining

Thought I'd share a couple snapshots from today. The first is Callum ordering his cheeseburger at lunchtime. He LOVES placing his food orders on his own. ;-)

The second was taken later this evening during dinner. He was acting pretty goofy throughout dinner (mostly to get out of eating his food I think!) but I couldn't resist snapping a quick pic during this little stunt. I asked if he was practicing yoga. He said no and told me it's what ninjas do.

Callum's counts were down again a bit this morning, so as you can see, we're still here. But more than the counts, we received some more "bad" news. I put it in italics because it's not so much bad as it is perplexing and has us all scratching our heads.

Whenever Callum is admitted due to an infection, one of the first things they do is take a blood sample for cultures, to make sure an infection hasn't spread to his blood or his port. Monday's results came back negative (they take 48 hours before we have initial results and then another several days to grow after that if there's anything), but Tuesday's results came back positive!

This is very strange since he's been on Vanco (a strong antibiotic) since he was admitted (and it just so happens the bacteria that popped up responds very well to Vanco), and he doesn't appear at all sick (if he had an infection in his port or in his blood he'd be so much worse, fighting a serious fever and really looking and feeling awful). So, the doctors are almost certain it's neither of these things but instead a contaminate that was introduced during the collection process (from his draw to the bottle). Still, we can't rule it out, so we're staying another night (at least) and they're running another round of cultures (one from today and another from tomorrow to test). So, we will see.

In the meantime, the home pharmacy nurse also paid us a visit, to teach me how to administer Vanco via IV at home.

Yes. You read that right. AT. HOME.

Kinda nerve wracking! But once she walked me through it, I *did* remember a lot from our days flushing his PICC line, so it wasn't as bad. Still, this should be interesting!! The doctors feel like he's doing so well and really just hanging out for his IV antibiotics, which I can do for him at home. So, unless something else crops up tomorrow (like the preliminary results of his cultures don't look right), sounds like they're going to send us home.

It's been a lot to take in this week. I told my Dad the one thing about all this crap happening in the hospital is it's helping to keep my mind off our long weeklong wait for the LP next week. So at least there's that. :)

Wednesday, February 25, 2015


I guess I'll just hang out and catch up on Disney shows while someone catches a few zzzz's. ;-)

Please keep your hands and feet inside the ride at all times

Yesterday morning started off just peachy. Neither of us slept well, but once I got a bit of hot cocoa and frosted flakes in the little boy, and set him up with some movies on his iPad, he was in a pretty good mood.

Except for when he would yell at me for taking so many pictures, like this one, scrunching up his nose in disapproval. ;-)

The attending came in late, about 1pm, to discuss our case. Callum's counts had improved and his toenails were looking a million times better. So, she thought, if he continued on this upward trajectory, we could get discharged the following day (today)**.

Whoa! I was pretty surprised. But pleasantly surprised.

Then she said, but there's something else I need to talk to you about.


We found a couple of abnormal cells in his spinal fluid (from yesterday's LP).

What do you mean?

As you can imagine, my head began reeling and I think I only heard 75% of what she actually said next.

Essentially, this can happen from time to time, that some abnormal cells will "sneak in". Everyone feels it's too early to be too concerned and most likely due to the infection he's fighting, but of course the worst case scenario is he's having a relapse and we may need to start treatment all over again. So, we need to be safe and make sure it's the former, and hope it's not the latter.

They want to recheck his spinal fluid again in a week, so we'll know more then.

In the meantime, we are now strapped in, and in the middle of, yet another stressful roller coaster ride.

(**His counts dropped some today - Wednesday - so we're staying at least another night...)

Monday, February 23, 2015

At the hospital

Today was another scheduled LP - so I thought I'd share a few pics of our day.

The first is a snapshot I grabbed while Callum was still somewhat agreeable, before he got super grumpy from being hungry, thirsty and tired (he hadn't eaten since last night and the clinic was behind by 2 hours!). He wanted to include his favorite Skylanders character, Love Potion Pop Fizz, in the picture, so that is what the monster head is in the foreground. ;-)

The second pic is of Mr. Callum, still snoozing after his LP procedure was complete. The procedure went just fine and all was good.

While we were waiting for him to wake up from the anesthesia, the doctors came in to examine his ingrown toenails again. He's been on a round of antibiotics for the last 10 days and his toes haven't healed completely yet. His nurse wasn't super concerned because he seemed to be doing so well, however his blood counts came back while he was in the procedure and showed that he was neutropenic.

Given we now know he's neutropenic, that changed their opinion of his toenails. Because they haven't cleared after 10 days of antibiotics, the doctor decided to order antibiotics via IV to more heavily treat the infection. And sadly, that means we're being admitted.

So, the third pic is of Callum hanging out, now awake and watching movies and chowing down on food while we wait to be assigned a room (which we have just now moved into since I've been composing this post over the course of the day!).

Friday, February 20, 2015

Today's Callumisms

I guess Callum was on a roll today as we have not one, but TWO, Callumisms to report on (or perhaps I was actually paying attention for once!). ;-)

The first was said to Logan: But Logan, it's very hard for me not to tell secrets.

I had to chuckle at this one, since it's very true.

The second was said to me: When boys turn into Daddies they're still boys. So actually, you have three boys.

Also true. So very very true. ;-)

Getting to know the new neighborhood

Callum and I are sampling at the local pastry shop. ;-)

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Stopping to smell the....tulips?

I had a very long day today.

The morning was fun and productive - since I spent several hours with my Dad, looking at all sorts of stone and masonry, for a few areas we will be remodeling in the new house.

But the boys were out of school today (actually all week - Oy!), so I felt like one arm/hand/eye/ear was constantly preoccupied, wrangling in the two monkeys, which is always a pain. They were actually pretty well behaved for most of our visit to the showroom but quickly melted down after we left, as the minutes ticked by, while we searched for a place to have lunch. The rest of the afternoon they were pretty hyper and whiny and getting on my nerves. :)

So, what a wonderful surprise, to have Jon come home with a gorgeous bouquet of these lovelies for me! ❤️❤️

Now, to sit down and relax for a bit with my hubby, a hot cup of cocoa and a good episode of Downton Abbey.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day

Callum made me a really cute Valentine yesterday that I forgot to post a picture of. :)

We had grand plans to travel down south today, for a long weekend with family, however we've all been hit by a terrible cold and are still quite sick. So today we stayed home most of the day, resting as much as possible, until we all started getting on each others' nerves, so we went for a long walk with the dogs. Thankfully we're having amazing weather right now to get a little breath of fresh air!! :)

Hope everyone had a lovely day and weekend! ❤️❤️❤️

Friday, February 13, 2015

Impromptu Picnic Lunch

Callum and I are having an impromptu (bagels with cream cheese) picnic lunch outside Logan's school, while we wait for the bell to ring. :)

Thursday, February 12, 2015

All done!

Ready to hand out tomorrow. 💚💚💚😜

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

An equestrian area

When I told my hair stylist we'll be moving to a new home this summer, he commented about how lovely the area is, describing it as "equestrian".

I hadn't thought of it as equestrian but then here is a typical view on our drive up to the house - gorgeous valleys and horses quietly grazing. I snapped this pretty quickly this past Monday when visiting with Callum, so it's not the greatest of shots, but you get the idea. We turn this bend every time we drive up and it hit me - how correct my stylist is! :)

Callum was super excited to see the new house. He was laughing and running all over exploring every nook and cranny.

Logan also loves it. But he has a more calmer attitude about the place. His first comment as we drove up the hill was, "oh, it's so peaceful!"

He's right of course. Quite idyllic really and I'm still in a bit of shock we stumbled upon a great find which we soon get to call home. :)

Friday, February 6, 2015


I feel like Callum has a lot of catching up to do in the writing department, given how much of this past year he's missed. So, I've been "upping" his homework exercises lately to get him ready for Kindergarten.

Today, was more writing, but a different type of exercise than usual. Writing his name over and over (and over!) on his Valentine's cards.

Ohhhhh, the whining out of this one! ;-)

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

That time of year again....

If you have young boys, or are around them frequently, you probably know what these little guys are.

If not, this will probably pass right over your head.

I've done my best to know as little as possible about Minecraft, but having two young boys who love it, there's only so much that I can stay away from. ;-)

(The little green guys are bad guys, called "Creepers")


So I'm taking care of some bills this afternoon and thought I'd share.

This is *basically* for the hospital stay we had when Callum got sick with a cold/ear infection over Thanksgiving.

I say basically because it *does* cover some of his chemotherapy that we would have done, regardless of being in the hospital. But it doesn't cover the 3 weeks of every other day visits and blood draws we had to do after we were discharged, to monitor his counts. So, I figure, it's probably a close good estimate (possibly on the low end, I haven't bothered to calculate it out).

And of course, it doesn't put a dollar figure on our time. 10 days in the hospital, away from family and friends. Plus another 3 weeks of back and forth visits, no school, and canceled events (birthday parties, swim classes, Mom's Pilates - you name it, I was canceling it!).

And it certainly doesn't represent the amount of worry and stress we have while he's so sick. Nor the stress we have of him being OFF of chemotherapy for four weeks, while his body recovers!

When you put all of that into perspective, you can see why Callum getting just the common cold can be so serious for us.

Now, about the recent Measles outbreak (due to stupid ass parents who threaten both their own children's health, as well as others').....

I can't even go there, without my blood boiling.


Monday, February 2, 2015

Best buds

Callum's two best buds. He, of course, turned the other way when I asked to take a picture but at least his buddies are smiling! :)

Sunday, February 1, 2015

My gift

Callum (and his artist helper) made me this little fuzzy monster, whose name is "Beautiful Swamp". :)

Cancer Sucks, Art Heals

Callum and I are making some (monster) art, thanks to Pixar Studios and the Kids and Art Organization! :)