Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Pumpkin Patch - The highs and the lows

 Ella's been fighting a cough & sore throat.
According to her pediatrician, her right tonsil is "HUGE and red" but not strep.
So naturally we've been fighting high BGs.
Huge red tonsil aside, it was the first day Ella was feeling decent and it was the last day before Halloween for us to go to the pumpkin patch.
The girls had a great time picking out the "perfect pumpkin"...
Climbing the hay stack...

And getting lost in the hay maze.
So imagine my surprise when, after battling high BGs for the last several days, Ella says:
MOM - I'm STARVING and feel WEAK.
Meter count-down
When, oh WHEN will she start feeling low in the 60's ???
I shoved 3 Starbursts (Ella's current favorite low-buster) in her mouth and snapped this photo.
I think you can see the bulge of the starbursts in her cheeks if you look closely.

Disclaimer: I know I'm supposed to give her 15 carbs of fast-acting glucose. But I know my kid. I know my kid can fully chew and swallow and function at 35 - crazy, but true. And I know that 1 carb will bring her blood sugar up 10 bings. So 3 Starburst should have her sitting pretty somewhere around 135 - 160. This works for my kid. It may not work for yours.
And then she inhaled some stale Annie's bunny crackers that I had crammed in the back of my car from LAST YEAR's school emergency supply kit.
She was so ravenously hungry she didn't seem to mind.
I think she recovered quicker from the low than I did from the shock after learning the price of the pumpkins.
I'm there a squash shortage I don't know about?
 Because $45 for 3 pumpkins and one spaghetti squash just seems outrageous to me.
But it's not like I'm going to make my kids cry in the middle of the pumpkin patch by tossing out the perfect pumpkins they spent over 20 minutes searching for to tell them start over just so Momma can save five bucks.  
 Really??? $45 ????
My kids had better bust out some serious carving skillz on these pumpkins.
And they'd better contain some tasty seeds, too.
And some punk kid had better not even THINK about smashing my $45 pumpkins tomorrow night.
Happy Halloween Eve.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Screw You, Diabetes: We Did Disneyland

I posted a while ago about getting diabetes "firsts" out of the way during our first annual
Screw You, Diabetes Summer o'Fun
This past weekend we checked another "first" off of our list:
Over the summer, the family we went to Diabetes Camp at Camp Conrad Chinnock and had an amazing time.
Last Saturday night, the camp was hosting their annual fundraiser at the Disneyland Hotel Convention Center so we were able to get discounted conference rates to the Disneyland parks and the Disneyland hotel while raising money for a good cause.
We hit California Adventure on Friday. Ella's blood sugars ran in the 200's and 300's ALL DAY LONG (due to the excitement??) but it didn't stop us from having an amazing day.
Toy Story Mania
(I beat Domestic Divo with a whopping score of 240,000 hits & made him cry)
 Ready to ride the big Ferris Wheel

Next time I think I'll stand in the "non-swinging" gondola line.
And when Ella had a high blood sugar...
(don't you love when they wipe the blood on their clothes?)
...little sister Livie was there to give her a rest in the stroller.

Blood sugar at 330? No problem, sissy...take a rest. I'll push you.
Saturday day we decided to stay at the hotel and enjoy the remodeled pool area.
We love Mickey!
Exactly what is this kid doing?
And Saturday night we got gussied up to hit the Fundraiser Event
Where I didn't take very many pictures because the Jalapeno Cheese-filled pretzel I ate at Car Land on Friday didn't sit well with my stomach.
Yeah...I just admitted that.
In the end, we raised $200,000 to provide support & assistance for children and families affected with diabetes and to maintain the facility at Camp Conrad-Chinnock.
THAT, folks, is what it's all about.
Sunday we spent 14 exhausting magical hours at Disneyland where the kids hit every single Fantasy Land Ride and Ella discovered her love of roller coasters, experiencing Big Thunder Mountain and Matterhorn for the first (and second...and third...and fourth) time.
 Popsicle so cold my tongue froze to it...but I'm still smiling!
 31 Carbs of Deliciousness
 13th hour and still going strong...
I think we finally wore them out!
So there you have it, folks, the continuation of our "Screw You, Diabetes Summer o'Fun"
And yeah, we rocked it. And yeah, we had some high blood sugars. But look at the JOY on their little faces. Diabetes will NEVER take away that joy. Not as long as I'm alive.
In case you're keeping track, still on our list:
  • First trip to pumpkin patch (on the books for next week!)
  • First Halloween Candy Fun (October 31st, here we come!)
  • First Water Park Adventure...ummm...does the Disneyland slide count? No?
  • First Christmas Cookie Eating (December's right around the corner)
  • First trip to the snow/ski school (Booked! December 8th with Riding on Insulin)
  • First Sleep-over....ummmm....maybe 2013?

Sunday, October 14, 2012


I admit it.
I was getting a little too comfortable.
A little too cocky.
A little too big for my britches.
Ella's numbers had been cooperating. I think I actually said to Domestic Divo:
Huh. Weird. I don't think I've seen a number above 200 in a few days.
Then, last night, after a party full of carbs & cake, Ella was 148 at 9:00pm and I think I actually said to Domestic Divo:
Yeay. We rocked that one.
Then, at 11:00pm the madness started:
Omnipod said HIGH for the first time since diagnosis.
Well, hello there.

The accu-check gave us a number we could actually work with:
Now since this pod had been working beautifully for the past 2 day, I chalked it up to
and gave her an injection because she comes down quicker at night if I do an injection.
The rest of the night went like this:
1:00am: 299. Sweet. Another injection.
3:00am: 139. Sweet. Let it Ride
6:00am: 63. I'll take it. Pod MUST be working...a little too good...toss her a roll of smarties.
7:30am:  201. Hmmmm.... one roll of smarties shouldn't have brought her up THAT much.
Breakfast. Bolus.
9:13am: 305. Yeah....I think it's time to wave the white flag and do a pod change.
9:30am:  POD CHANGE
The rest of the day went like this:
I mean, really, have you ever seen such AWESOME numbers?
The 422 at 1:47pm I chalked up to:
Well, we MUST have accidentally been given the full sugar snow cone instead of the sugar free snow cone.
As obviously evidenced by the 370 a mere 1 hour later.
The correction MUST be working. This pod MUST WORK.
So imagine my surprise when, 2 hours post correction, she was back up to 436.
Again, I waved the white flag and admitted defeat. I told Ella we needed to do another pod change. She protested. I told her it was either a pod change or a Lantus injection. That seemed to work because she said:
POD Change. I will not Lantus Win!!
She hates Lantus.
And now, at 7:00pm, she's down to 330.
I never thought I'd be so happy to see 330.
Please let this pod change work.
I promise to never get cocky again.
I promise to never get too big for my britches again.
I promise that, despite a few good days of blood sugars, I will not forget that I am not the one in charge.
I promise to never forget that the second I do forget, diabetes will remind me by giving me this:

And I promise to remember to not beat myself up because...

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Saturday Work Day

My yard was starting to look like Sanford & Son Salvage...less antiques, more junk...
So I declared today a Saturday Work Day. No one was exempt.
The littles helped sort recyclables:
While the bigs (well, mostly Domestic Divo) got to work on the rest of the yard which looked like this:
Side yard
Garden box that hasn't been planted in 3 years
The "where everything ends up" corner
Messy backyard
Messy back of house
And by 2:00pm, our Sanford and Son Backyard has now been replaced with:
And I've got photos to prove it:

Side Yard
Garden Box
The once previous disastrous corner

Clean Backyard
Clean Back of House
The girls even earned $22 cash for recycling all of those bottles & cans.
We decided to add it to our "Cash for Cure" jar.

Now that the yards are all cleaned up and all of the recycle containers empty, I guess this means I need to go drink something so we can earn more $$ for a cure.
Oh, the sacrifices I make.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Homework & Diabetes

I love looking through Ella's Homework.
I love seeing what she does during the hours she's at school.
I love seeing how her mind works and her creative spelling.
Question: Write what might happen if people did not buy the vegetables Amy's family grows.
Ella: They would be poor.
Write to tell how you are a consumer.
Ella: We do not oen a compne.
Translation: We do not own a company.
She also writes a lot about diabetes.
She's never been a talker, so I often feel like I don't really know what's going on in her little head.
So I love seeing her write about diabetes on her school work because it gives me a little glimpse of how she's feeling about this whole diabetes thing.
This one made me smile:
This one made me laugh:
This one made me smile but also broke my heart
And this one? This one is surprising.
And I'm not talking about when she says the best part about her is that she has diabetes.
The surprising thing to me was that if she could choose to go anywhere in the world she'd choose to go to Mexico so she can collect "Mexican Dollars"
 I think a trip to Cabo San Lucas is necessary.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Tegaderm for Cheap Shoes, Dexcom G4 & Pump Peelz

Tegaderm + Cheap Shoes = Heaven

I was cruising through K-Mart the other day and found some super cute shoes for $7. Yeah, you heard me right. SEVEN BUCKS. They just happened to have one size 6 left.
I wore an outfit today that provided the perfect opportunity to wear these. The problem was that when I put them on and walked around, the back of the strap was rubbing my ankle. I was about to pop matching yes-I-bought-cheap-shoes bandaids on my ankles when all of a sudden it dawned on me that I had something better: TEGADERM!
I cut one in half, popped one half on the back of one ankle, the other on the back of the other ankle and I walked around ALL DAY LONG in complete comfort in my $7.00 shoes. I got several compliments on my cheap-o shoes and, thanks to tegaderm, nobody knew how cheap they really were.
You know the best part? If you're a size 9 and act fast, you, too, can own these for $3.99! $3.99?? Are you kidding me?? Don't forget the Tegaderm!

Dexcom7 G4: I'll give it a chance

The other great thing that happened today was that I found out Dexcom finally got FDA Approval for G4. My love affair with the G3 didn't last long. Why? Here's my top 5 reasons:
1. The 5 foot radius. Ridiculous. We spent more time out of range than in range, which I believe probably contributed to reason #2.
2. Inaccuracy. That thing was > 20% wrong > 75% of the time.
3. More finger pokes. Because of Reason #2.
4. More nagging. Because of Reason #1. I was constantly saying, "Ella - where's Dexa?"
5. More, rather than less, time managing/thinking about diabetes because of all of the above.
So I basically have a BRAND SPANKIN' new Dexcom G3 sitting in a box with a 3 month supply of sensors. So why the heck would I pay the $399 for the upgrade to the G4? Top 5 reasons:
1. 20 foot range
2. 19% improvement in overall 
3. 30% improvement in accuracy in the hypoglycemia range
4. Pretty color choices
5. 30-day trial
I placed my order for a pink one and I'm hoping we like it better than G3.
And really, if I continue saving money by buying cheap shoes, I'll eventually be able to pay it off. 
I suppose I'll have to wait a little longer for Hatsy. Sorry neighborhood kids. No snow cones for you.  

Pump Peelz

And finally...last, but not least (I just had SO MUCH to talk about today!): Pump Peelz.
Denise at My Sweet Bean and Her Pod posted about Pump Peelz.

We used to bling out Ella's pod with rhinestones and quickly learned her hair got caught in them. Then we moved on to stickers but they always fell off.

Then we started having issues with the pod sticking so now we wrap it in leg and arm bands.
Because of this issue, pump peelz aren't something we could use on a regular basis, but we can use them on special occasions!

Like Halloween. How cute would this be with Ella's Midnight Fairy Costume?

There are lots of other Holiday and Every Day Pump Peelz to choose from, so head on over and shop!

Remember: A Naked Omnipod is a Sad Omnipod.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Ella Does Diabetes Saturday: Day One

Ella's been living with T1 Diabetes for 9 months.
She's 7 years old.
She checks her own blood sugar, thinks it's fun to give herself injections and knows how to operate her pump better than the school nurse.
But she doesn't understand the idiosyncracies of her disease.
She doesn't know that if it's been less than 2 hours since last dose, she needs to choose "no" when her pump prompts, "use BG to calculate dose?"
She doesn't know that, during the school day, if she's between 150 and 250 at lunch that a half correction, rather than a full correction, will usually have her sitting pretty in the 100 to 150 range at 2:00. 
She doesn't know that she can drop pretty quick between 2 and 4, so an after-school snack at around 2:30 is needed to give her plenty of energy to play in the backyard.  
Most adults get confused about all of this, so do I really expect a 7 year old to know this?
But she needs to start learning. Because someday I'm going to have to turn this all over to her. Because no matter how much I want to take diabetes away from her and make it mine, I can't. It's not my diabetes. It's Ella's diabetes...for life.
I read a post by Diabetes Dad called It's Not Your Diabetes where he recounts a conversation he had:
What was she talking about that this was not ‘my’ disease? It affects all of us, so it belongs to us all. Give it back to her? What?!! Like a final punch in the head, which would be the knock out blow, she closed the conversation with this: “One day, my parents were no longer around. I was left to care for my diabetes and had no clue what to do. I was fifteen and had diabetes for years but my parents did everything for me, and I let them. And in one instant, they were gone. Do yourself a favor and the best favor you can ever do for your daughter - give her back her diabetes. The more she does for herself and the sooner, the better off you will all be.”
I decided the only way for Ella to start understanding is to start doing.
So today begins our first "Ella Does Diabetes" Saturday where Ella will be the one in charge with me watching...and yes, prompting. It is only Day One. I'm not expecting miracles here.
What I do expect out of today is for me to say: Breakfast! and have Ella know that this means wash hands, check blood sugar and bolus for breakfast. She did a lovely job adding up the carbs, dontcha think?
 I know that when we go to a birthday party this afternoon I will need to give her a little hint before she goes in the bounce house...I anticipate it going like this:
Me: OK, Ella, you're going to go in the bounce house. How long as it been since you last ate?
Ella: Ummmm....
Me: Figure it out using your pump.
Ella: 1 hour
 Me: Good. What do you think you should do?
Ella: Check my blood sugar
Me: Great. Now your blood sugar is XX. How much insulin do you have on board?
Ella: Ummmm....
Me: Figure it out using your pump.
 Ella: .25 units
Me: What do you think you should do?
Ella: Have a snack?
Me: Yes. Good. WHY?
I want Ella to start THINKING and making decisions and being confident in her decisions.
When she was first diagnosed I remember saying that I wanted to bear this burden as long as possible. To shield her from all of this decision making and thinking in order to give her a "normal" childhood. I realize now that I need her to start making decisions and thinking so she can do normal childhood things like go to sleep-overs and after-school activities and play at friend's houses without having to have her mom tag along.
So, every Saturday will be "Ella Does Diabetes" Day where she will take responsibility of managing her diabetes with Mom and Dad watching and helping and guiding. The best part? To her, it's not a burden. She thinks it's kind of fun.
I mean, really, what kid doesn't want to feel like they know it all?

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Shave It

Now that the girls are both in school, we've been having a lot of ho-hum days around here.
Wake up
Get Ready for School
Holler at Kids to GET IN THE CAR....NOW!!!
Drop off kids at School
Drive to Work
Pick up Kids from School
Brush Teeth
Put Kids to Bed
Make Lunches
Pick up House
Watch an hour of mindless T.V.
Fall into Bed
Today I felt like I just couldn't stand another day of the same old normal routine. We needed some excitement. Something much less than a trip to Disneyland but much more than the old trick game called "let's see how many toys we can pick up in 10 minutes"
So we packed up the girls and headed to a place called Shave It - a snow cone shop that offers all flavored syrups in both sugar and non-sugar offerings. 
Both girls had HUGE snow cones topped with sugar-free Black Cherry syrup.  
They were so excited you would have thought we HAD taken them to Disneyland.
Which got me thinking...why the heck don't I have a snow cone bar at my house?
DD thinks I'm nuts, but I'm looking into getting a professional ice shaver and ordering up some snolite sugar-free syrups so that we can whip up tasty carb-free treets 24 hours a day.
I've got my eye on the Hatsuyuki Cube Ice Shaver HC-8E. With 1/3 HP Motor, this bad boy can shave 6 lbs of ice per minute. I'll call her Hatsy and charge the neighborhood kids $5.00 for a snow cone and donate all the proceeds to Faustman so she can find a cure for this damned disease. I'll invite all of our T1D friends over and let them go hog wild with snow cones as big as their faces.
I have so many grand plans for Hatsy.
Hatsy would look great wrapped up in a big, red bow under our Christmas Tree this year.
(Hint, Hint)

Monday, October 1, 2012

No D-Day: Our Love Story

I met DD (Domestic Divo) when I was 21. Much to my parent's delight, I took the year off between my Junior and Senior year in College and decided to work for minimum wage + tips at a local bar & grill called Chuy's. Don't knock it until you've tried their wings.
February 11th, 2000 DD walked into Chuy's with his Fire Academy buddies and was ordering at the register next to mine. Something he said caught my attention. I looked up and we made eye contact. I remember thinking he was cute. Next thing I know, he sticks his hand out and our conversation goes like this: 
Hey - I'm Clayton
(shaking hands)
Hey - I'm Krissy
Are you single?
Yes, I am
You want to go out sometime?
Uhhh....yeah, sure. I'll bring you number
We went out the next night, February 12th, and on February 14th he sent me a big bouquet of red and white roses. February 16th we met at a little coffee shop and talked for hours. I remember thinking he could be the one. 
In August, I transferred to a local college to be near DD to finish out my senior year.
In November, he asked me to marry him.
July 7, 2001 we said I Do.

We've been through so much in the past 11 years.
We're not the same people that we were when we were 23.
We argue. We've been in marriage counseling. We've taken each other for granted. There were times I thought we weren't going to make it. We drive each other insane sometimes. We laugh. There are times I've laughed so hard I've tinkled a little bit in my pants. It happens after giving birth twice. He's my best friend. He's my rock. He's the best father I could ask for. We love each other.
We both come from a long line of divorced families. Our family trees look more like spider webs. When we got married, we were determined to break the cycle. I think sometimes that determination has been the only thing that kept us together. But isn't that what it's all about? At the end of the day, we made a commitment to each other: for better or WORSE. And being able to stick through the WORSE and come out on the other end is what makes our love grow stronger.
I'm not very good at expressing how much I love him. I know he reads this blog sometimes to get a peek into my mind. So, DD, on this no-D-Day I want you to know how much I love you - for your strength, for your humor, for your kindness, for your BBQ skills, for your ability to get through a honey-do list in 6 hours, for your perseverance, for your support and for loving me when I'm at my worst.

Baby: If I had to do it all over, I'd pick you again every time.