March 11, 2019. Day +2922. 8 years since bone marrow transplant!!   Leave a comment

It’s really hard to believe it’s been another 6 months since my last post.  Things are still going as well as we could expect here.

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Tracy, Charlotte, Dr Diamond and Amy at CJ’s checkup appt in December 2018.

Today marks the 8 year anniversary of Charlotte’s bone marrow transplant and we feel so blessed to have her here with us every day!

Things have been very busy over the last 6 months with our lives.  Charlotte had her yearly oncology appointment with Dr Diamond in December and everything looked great again.  🙂   WBC count was 5.3,  Hemoglobin was 12.1,  241k Platelets and  Neutrophils were in at 2630.   She is having a bone density test next week to see if there was any chemo damage to her bones but it’s purely a protocol related follow-up test.

Charlotte and Molly have been busy the last month spreading Girl Scout joy in the form of GS Cookie Sales.  They’ve both been trying very hard to keep up with Mommy’s busy cookie booth schedule!  The final results aren’t in, but it looks like both of them were able to achieve their personal goal of selling 300+ boxes each.

Charlotte has been involved in the NASP Archery program in Columbus again and has been in 5 tournaments so far this year.  She has taken First Place once, Second Place three times(!) and came in fifth once.  She only has one or two tournaments left this year but we’re very proud of how far she has come.  She has been one of the top shooters in her division in the State!!!  We’re already planning out our summer practice schedule since next year she will be up against 6, 7th and 8th graders.

We continue to keep in touch with Erin, Charlotte’s bone marrow donor, and have seen her twice over the last 6 months- including this past weekend.  She was able to come to Wisconsin just in time to see Charlotte take over first place in the Portage tournament, beating out 33 other 4th and 5th grade girls.  She eventually lost to another girl at the end of the night taking second overall.  :\  Erin was able to hang out with us for two days, really taking in the very best Wisconsin weather we have to offer.  We started with a beautiful sunny day, then rain, then sleet, then very cold and windy blizzard conditions through the night!!!  She has been missing the snow since she moved from Philly several years ago so we’re just glad we could come through on her request!

Please take a moment to tell the people in your life that you love them and take some time to volunteer to make the world a better place for those that are suffering.  Many of us have been so very blessed and sometimes we just don’t know how special that is until our lives are interrupted and things just take a turn.  Let’s all be grateful for what and who we have.

Peace and love,

Lon

 

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Posted March 11, 2019 by L. Elske in Uncategorized

September 11th, 2018. Day +2741. 8 years since diagnosis.   1 comment

It’s been another busy summer of me ignoring this blog! The girls had a wonderful and fun-filled summer and stayed busy enjoying time outside and swimming and playing with the dog. They are happy and healthy and I cannot ask for more. Harris, our dog, has been growing up just as sassy as Broadway was, but he really is trying to be a good boy as often as he can.

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The four of us recently returned from a week long cruise to the Caribbean just before school started for the girls. It was a really nice way to end the summer! We had a really fun time and enjoyed visiting new places and seeing all of the sights. They spent a lot of time in the pool and water park on the ship while Amy and I relaxed in the sun and caught up on some reading. We swam with the stingrays and dolphins and went snorkeling and spent some real quality family time enjoying each other’s company in the small cabin. It was a well deserved rest and we won’t soon forget it!

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Daddy protecting Molly from a stingray!!

I would like to take a moment to ask you for prayers for a favorite co-worker of mine, Rob Gonzales. He’s been diagnosed with a brain tumor, and it sounds like there is just no cure for it. He’s always been friendly and helpful to me and I wish him and his family the best and pray for them every night.

 

Thank you all for checking on us and please take the time to tell your friends and family members that you love them and are thankful that they are in your lives.

Posted September 11, 2018 by L. Elske in Uncategorized

March 11th, 2018. Day +2557. 7 years post-transplant!!!   2 comments

It’s been a long time since I’ve last posted here (keep up with Amy and the girls on Facebook!!) and we’ve had another several months worth of happy memories that we will all cherish.  Charlotte’s annual appointment with Dr. Diamond went well and she is happy with how Charlotte is growing and progressing in school.  Amy and I spent a week and a half at Disney World in December with the girls and we had a wonderful time .  Charlotte and Molly have been enjoying school (save for homework) and spending time with friends and family around the holidays!  Charlotte and Molly (and Mommy) just wrapped up another successful year of selling Girl Scout Cookies, with each girl making her personal goal!  Charlotte has been active in archery in her school and she is becoming quite the marksman!!  I’ve proud of her for sticking with it, even though she wasn’t terribly happy to have us sign her up!  🙂

Today marks the 7th year since Charlotte received her life-saving stem cell transplant from our real-life angel, Erin.  We’ve been in constant contact with her and even seen her twice since my last update on this site.  We met up with her while we were in Disney World and she spent this whole past weekend with us.  She really has become part of our family and we’re so thankful for all she has given us.  She has made our family complete and we wouldn’t be where we are without her.

 

Posted March 11, 2018 by L. Elske in Uncategorized

October 8th, 2017. Day +2403   1 comment

We’ve had another wonderful summer with our family.  Charlotte and Molly are healthy and doing well. They both started school last month and are enjoying it!  We added another member to our family in July!  Harris is a Springer Spaniel, like Broadway, and boy is he a handful.  But we are having a great time with him.  The girls are wonderful with him and he’s already become an integral part of our family.
We spent a weekend with Erin, Charlotte’s bone marrow donor, last month as well!  All of us visited American Family Children’s Hospital and saw several of Charlotte’s old nurses.  They were so happy to meet Erin and we were so proud to show her off!  After that we had a customary Wisconsin fall weekend, including visiting the pumpkin patch and spending time with the family.
We’re so grateful to have her in our lives and we continue to pray for all of those affected by cancer every day.

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Posted October 8, 2017 by L. Elske in Uncategorized

March 11th, 2017. Day +2192. 6 years since Bone Marrow Transplant!!!   2 comments

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This is us 6 years ago  (Molly was staying with Grandma and Grandpa while we were inpatient).  March 11, 2011 was the date of Charlotte’s Bone Marrow Transplant from an anonymous donor.

Here’s a picture of her IV rack and the bag of stem cells at the top center.DSCN3725

We weren’t sure how Charlotte’s story would unfold, but here we are today- a very happy and healthy family.

 

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I would just like to say a  very special “Thank You” to the Doctors, nurses and rest of the staff at AFCH, to our friends and family who were praying for us, and to Erin-Charlotte’s real-life angel.  We wouldn’t be here without all of you.

Posted March 11, 2017 by L. Elske in Uncategorized

December 15th, 2016. Day +2106.   2 comments

 

We had Charlotte’s yearly oncology appointment with Dr Diamond this afternoon.  It was a pleasant appointment, catching up on the year’s activities.  We got to share our spring trip to Disneyland with Erin, and she loved hearing about Charlotte and Molly doing well in school.

All of Charlotte’s numbers looked great.  WBC was 5.1, Hemoglobin 12.9,238k Platelets.

When we were saying our goodbyes, we ran into Dr DeSantes.  We haven’t seen him in a few years!  He was all smiles when he saw how great Charlotte looked.  It was great to see him again and wonderful to know that he is still at AFCH performing miracles every day for kids like Charlotte.

We also stopped up on the 4th floor to say hello to the nurses and saw plenty of familiar faces!  Molly and Charlotte loved talking to all of them and telling them how their year has been going.file-dec-15-9-36-58-pm

 

Thank you again for checking in on us and following Charlotte’s story.  We hope you have a  blessed and safe holiday season.

Posted December 15, 2016 by L. Elske in Uncategorized

July 13th, 2016. Day +1951. We will miss you Broadway.   1 comment

And just like that, it’s been another 4 months since our last blog update. With Amy being IMG_1451on this Facebook thing , (that I figured would never take off) I’m sure many of you have kept up to date with our daily comings and goings.

We’ve had a great 4 months. We celebrated Charlotte’s 8th birthday in May. We had a wonderful time with Charlotte’s friends and our families. I had another terrific Canada fishing trip with Grandpa Elske and this brother I have and some other great friends. It was a very enjoyable trip and I’m thankful I was able to go again.

 

 

 

DSCN2606We spent this past Saturday with the Badger Cancer Childhood network playing around at Little Amerrika, and we found an old friend! We were originally introduced to Gloria and Ina on the first weekend Charlotte was admitted to the hospital. Ina was diagnosed with AML as well when she was 2. Gloria was there to help us through some of the hard times and we’ve kept in touch using that facebook thing, but we haven’t seen each other since Charlotte was inpatient. Ina has been doing well and it was awesome to reconnect and share how our families are doing.IMG_1450

 

 

 

 

 

 

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We have been very blessed over the years with our good friends and our families and our IMG_5663health. However, today we had to say goodbye to our not-often-mentioned-but-always-loved sidekick, Broadway. He has been in our lives since he was the cutest little puppy and he has been an absolute joy to have around.   He truly was an awesome dog and a great friend. We will miss him dearly and will always love him. He turned 13 years old yesterday.

 

Posted July 13, 2016 by L. Elske in Uncategorized