Saturday, March 22, 2008

Kalahari Waterpark and Easter

We continue to try and party as much as possible with Ann Arbor friends before we move and while Izzy is feeling well. We spent Thursday night in a 3-room suite at an indoor waterpark in Ohio with the Maynors and the Ingmires. We had such a fun time! Izzy was full-on swimming (coming up for air when needed) for the first time.

We celebrated Ryan's 2nd birthday and Willa's first while we were there.

The girls have loved the Easter festivities!
Friday Night / Saturday Morning the Easter Bunny came and hid our shoes (a long-time Kofoed tradition) and each girl's treasure hunt notes and dropped off some candy.
(The candy has put them into a trance apparently.)

I thought this was a cute shot of Izzy's hair growth.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

One Year Anniversary and Ode to Red Blankie

Today is a fitting day for a little story as March 9th marks the year anniversary of Izzy's diagnosis. I let the Disney post linger a bit before telling the sad tale of Izzy losing Red Blankie on our trip:

The blankie I made her as a newborn, the blankie that has been her friend through all the rough times was lost (and I mean lost regardless of my blood, sweat, and tears trying to find it) in Florida. The first night without it she sobbed 'til about 2 a.m. But then amazingly she has not shed a tear for it since. I think she sucks her thumb less and has more energy without it here to lull her. So as much as I miss it :) I think it has been a positive thing altogether.

Izzy has a way of turning things postive as I was reminded today at church. Laura Hall told a story of babysitting Izzy once a few months back in which Izzy started really wanting me. Instead of crying, she found a toy keyboard of theirs and started singing a made-up song "I want my Mommy back." I thought it was a good example of Izzy's amazing coping skills.

I explained to Izzy today that it has been a whole year since she got cancer. I asked her what she thought about the last year of her life. She mentioned being at the cancer center a lot. I asked if she remembered all those leg shots we had to give her..."oh yeah I remember that." Then I said, remember when you couldn't talk for a while... "that was kinda funny," she said. Then when I asked if she remembers her seizure and ambulance ride and the doctors cutting her shirt off, she had absolutely no recollection of it. Strangely we had a nice little chuckle about it all as a family. And now, as recommended by Grandpa Costley, I think we're going to "cork it all like a bottle of fine wine and put it on a shelf: far far away!" :)

Red blankie used to have stripes on one side...
Red blankie used to be shiny and soft...

Red blankie got played with a lot...

Red blankie gave a lot of comfort...and got a little scuzzy...

Red blankie gave a last hoorah to Izzy and possibly found a new friend to cheer up...thus marking the beginning of a new year of feeling better and apparently not needing Red Blankie anymore.


Monday, March 3, 2008

Disney World: Izzy's Wish Came True

We had an amazing trip to Disney World this last week. Thanks to everybody who helped us get excited about and ready for the trip--UM Stars, Disney bucks, Disney toys, Make-a-wish, Give Kids the World and the amusement parks. Izzy was feeling great which made it possible to really suck the marrow out of Orlando.

Warning: Slew of pictures to follow.

We knew that we were in for a fantastic vacation when the limo showed up to pick us up in the morning and take us to the airport.

We spent the rest of the day at the Give Kids the World Village (GKTW) that was a mini Magic Kingdom where we stayed for the whole week.

(They had free ice cream at GKTW, and the shop was open from 7 AM to 9 PM. You can guess how many trips we made there.)

Tuesday we took the Magic Kingdom down to china town. They gave us a permanent fast pass to use on all of the attractions which was incredible, but it also made for a day of little breaks as we went from ride to ride to ride.

(Izzy and Jack Sparrow)

(A pretty freaky little roller coaster)

(We had a sweet Florida rain storm hit us as we were heading to our car for the night--Yes, I was excited)

We spent another fun filled day at Disney World, specifically Animal Kingdom in the morning and then Magic Kingdom in the afternoon when Izzy had her dinner with the Princesses.

Thursday morning we spent some quality time with Mickie and Minnie and then headed to Sea World to hang with the dolphins and friends. The girls loved feeding the sting rays and the dolphins. That night GKTW had a Christmas parade during which Santa and Mrs. Claus showed up.

(Dang I look good in this one. The girls were wearing me out.)

(Izzy and Haley--a fellow leukemia fighter at the UM Hospital)

We decided to take a day trip to the East Coast and let the girls get their first taste of the ocean and a little sunburn. That night Izzy and the girls had a Princess party at GKTW.

Our plane didn't leave until 7 PM so naturally we decided to spend some more quality time at Disney World after one last ride on the GKTW carousel. We rode on this carousel literally 5 times a day, every day of the week. I got close to puking a few times. At the Animal Kingdom, Lorin and Izzy got to be in a Lion King Festival show.

An Amazing Trip
After 24 carousel rides, 10 rounds of Buzz Lightyear's Coaster, 2 rides on It's a Small World, 1 ride on every spin in a circle and go up and down attraction, an African safari, Pirates of the Caribbean, Shamu, sting-rays, dolphins, a trip to the beach, 3 days at Disney World and one day at Sea-World our little Izzy's wish was fulfilled and our family has more strength to keep fighting.

Thanks again to everyone who made the trip a reality.