Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010 Review MeMe

After reading DiabetesMine, Six Until Me and The Superhero and the Princess I thought I would join in on the Year End Review MeMe.  Me being me I am throwing a few pictures in the mix (as if you haven't had to endure enough already!). 

So here are first lines of one blog post from each month —
Should be interesting -
Here we go . . .

January - I am so frustrated I could scream!  No matter how hard we try, no matter what we do we just cannot seem to get Nate into those 'middle' numbers.

 February - Yesterday my mom, Helen and I took Nate to Children's Hospital to attend an insulin pump training class called Pump It Up.

March - Well, we did it.  Nate is now officially on the OmniPod Insulin pump. Yea Nate!

April - We finally found the best spot for Nate's pod.  We like his arm, we love his thigh but have always struggled with his bum because of his diapers and his tendency to poop in them.

May - After a great Diabetes Blog Week I need a blogcation!

June - Sophie had her follow-up appointment with her GI on Thursday.  After reviewing the biopsy results unfortunately we are not really any closer to knowing whether she has Crohn's or Ulcerative Colitis (UC).

July - Nate's alkaline phosphatase results came back much lower today and all of the other results were completely normal. It looks like we have a case of Benign Transient Hyperphosphatasemia which really means that his alkaline phosphatase was elevated for no good reason but should go down and cause absolutely no problem whatsoever.

August - No complaints. No worries.  Just a happy little boy.  Nathan James Houston is my
hero . . .  Go Team Super Nate.

September - Team Super Nate has raised over $12,000 to date and we are still collecting donations! We have more than doubled our goal and just writing that makes me cry --- now I know you think I cry all of the time but I swear I don't!  We've just gone through Nate's 1-year with D anniversary and 1 week later the overwhelming support from my friends and family for the walk has stirred up a lot of emotion!!

October - The very lovely and very foul-mouthed (2 things that I absolutely love about her) Reyna over at Beta Buddies started the Naked Pancreas Challenge.  Here are my Naked Answers!!

November - We spent 5 days in Key West, Florida . . . it was our 1st trip with diabetes and it was wonderful.
December - Last weekend we decided to make Christmas ornaments from Nate's old pods instead of sending them in for recycling.  We planned on decorating maybe 5 each but before I knew it we were having so much fun we had decorated almost all of them.  I haven't counted them all but I am guessing there's are close to 100 decorated pods in my house right now.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010


I cannot say enough about the Diabetes Online Community (DOC) --- 

There have been times since Nate's diagnosis that I have felt like the only people that understood me, supported me, lifted me up and really KNEW what I was going through are the people I have met online.  Yes, the people that live in my computer have at times been my saving grace.  I cannot imagine for one moment me surviving that last year and 3 months without the wonderful people in the DOC.

When I started this blog in September of 2009 it was for sole purpose of self-medicating.  My son had just been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and I felt scared and alone.  So, in my spare time (that's a joke) I decided to blog it out.  I honestly had no idea that anyone besides my mom and grandmother would read what I had written.  Today looking at my stats I can see that my blog gets on average about 250 hits per day 

---- What?  
How did that happen? 
My mom has a lot of time on her hands but NOT THAT MUCH time.  

People I don't know and a lot of people that I do know are actually reading my blog.  This fact makes me both happy and nervous!!  I never want to offend anyone but I always like to speak my mind.  I also know that I often come across as a raging, depressed, lunatic which has my grandmother adding me to every prayer chain she can get her hands on but I always feel better after I get my feelings out --- thank you for reading my words, hearing my thoughts, understanding my craziness and helping me get through it all.

Thank you for wanting to hear more from me!  This past month I have missed my blog and my DOC peeps so much. For me the nomination for Blogger We Wish Would Blog More could not be any more fitting for me personally.  I wish I would blog more!  I have missed it so much this month.  It has been one of those months where I have SO much to say that the words just get lost in my head and with so many other things going on I have not had the time to sit down and sort them all out.  I mean seriously, I still have posts sitting in my drafts that were supposed to be posted in November for Diabetes Awareness Month.  Oh well - January seems like a good time to get those out - no?

So, all of that to say that I am truly HONORED to be nominated and appreciate so much that someone (even if it was my mom that nominated me) actually wants to hear more from me.   Thank you, my friends.  Thank you!

Here are the others nominated in the same category:

Wil –
Becky –
Dana Lewis – needs to start a blog
Penny –

Anyone can vote!  Go check it out ---

The categories are fun and the people nominated are some of my favorite people in the world! 

GO VOTE, please!
Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas 2010

We did it.  It's done. Over. Finished. 
And here is what it looked like for the Houston Family:

12/4/10 - Brunch with Santa


12/18/10 - Williams Family Christmas Party

Me, Jeff and Nate

Me and Dad

 I chose the 2 pictures above to represent the Williams Family Christmas for 2 reasons -

1) My cousin Jeff and I grew up together. We were super close and I love him like a brother.  Before he was dx with Alopecia Universalis he and Nate looked A LOT alike.  Jeff lost all of his hair around age 2 or 3 - I honestly do not remember because I don't remember him ever having hair.  He had beautiful blond hair just like Nate -- I've seen the pictures and they really do look a lot alike.

When Nate was 1st dx I really thought the autoimmune genes came from Jim's family --- not that I blamed anybody I just needed to find an answer.  Some reason why this was happening.  Anywho - this year in the Secret Santa gift exchange our family drew Ronda from Autoimmune Island and her daughter Queen Alopecia has Alopecia Universalis and her other daughter The Sugar Princess has type 1.   A light bulb went off --- Alopecia - Type 1 - Autoimmune Island.  Hey - my family has autoimmune diseases too.  I don't know why it matters - it doesn't really - it just made me think that Nate's T1 and Sophie's Crohn's comes from both of us.  Silly - I know.

2) That's my dad. No denying that - right?  I don't think I've ever posted a picture of him.  He's Type 2 and insulin dependent.  I won't discuss his D management here but he and Nate both have diabetes and Nate's dx forced me to better understand my dad's disease.  Now that I  know more about it I want to micromanage his care like I do Nate's --- unfortunately, my dad is pretty set in his ways and it is very hard to teach that old dog new tricks.  :)
I don't think he reads my blog so I can say that.  :)

12/20/10 - Holiday in the Park

This was 2 days after the Williams Family Christmas party and when I discovered that I had picked up a VICIOUS stomach bug from above mentioned party.  Oh yea - I tossed my cookies all over Six Flags of Texas and then went on to keep tossing until Thursday, the 22nd.  At least I was in good company -- my cousins, Amanda and Michael also got sick and Jeff's daughter Peyton caught it too.  Good times!  Yep - that put me a little behind. 

12/23/10 - Cookie Decorating with GaGa

Ummm - Yea - he ate a spoonful of blue sugar!

Christmas Eve Day - Nana & Grumpy


Nate loves his basketball net!

Grumpy (my dad) and Nana came over and delivered some pretty amazing gifts for the kiddos!  We had a great time celebrating but before we knew it -- it was time to depart for church.

Christmas Eve after Church

My grandmother (80-years) playing Christmas carols

The Houston Family

Sophie, Me, Mom, and Nate

Emma, Poppa, Sophie and Nate being Super Silly!

Nate loves his GaGa!!
Getting Ready for Santa

Christmas Day!!

Checking it all out.

Sophie making sure Santa's not up in the chimney.
Always There.

We are so blessed this year!  Santa had lots of help from GaGa and Poppa as well as Grandma Pat.  Our Christmas would not have been as wonderful as it was without the love and help from our dear family.

We love Christmas!

BG check and Bolus for . . .
Still ready to party!
Merry Christmas to all . . . and to all a good night!

Ok - I know this is the longest post ever!  If you are still with me - - - I thank you!

We saved our Secret Santa gift exchange gifts for the day after Christmas.  We were beyond blessed this year.  Our wonderful friends from Death of a Pancreas drew our family!! 

And our favorite gifts . . .

How awesome are these??

If there is one thing that I am thankful for when it comes to diabetes it is the love and support of the DOC.  I have been double blessed with DOC love.  Joanne and Fred from DOAP not only live near by but have become some of our closest friends and for sure our biggest supporters in this D journey.  I absolutely cannot imagine how I would have survived the past year and 3 months without Joanne and Fred.  Diabetes brought us together but our friendship goes beyond the diagnosis and I am thankful everyday that they are in our lives. 

Thank you, Fred and Joanne --- We love you!!
Monday, December 13, 2010

Passport to Health Diabetes Initiative

Last month was diabetes awareness month and I had hoped to post more than I was able to about all things diabetes.  So, this month I am playing a little bit of catch up.

On November 3rd Jim, Sophie, Nate and I attended the Annual Mayor's Passport to Health luncheon at the Meyerson.  Nate is an ambassador for the JDRF Dallas Chapter and Jim and I are as active as we possibly can be with a 2-year old, a 4-year old and a 6-year old..  We were excited to attend and participate in the luncheon and also to meet some pretty amazing people living with type 1 diabetes.

Two of the speakers that we got to meet were pretty awesome in our book -

The 1st one was Robyn Cox.  Robyn was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 13. She always dreamed of being a dolphin trainer and didn’t let her diabetes prevent her from becoming a leader in the field. We love Robyn and had been wanting to meet her for quite a while!  She is a dolphin trainer at Sea World in San Antonio and our children are CrAzY about Sea World and the dolphins there.  So cool!!

Robyn with Sophie & Nate

Robyn was such a good sport to take a picture with our 2 wiggly kiddos. After the picture when I picked up Nate I noticed a foul odor.  Oh yea - he had a poopie diaper - NICE!  Way to make us proud, Nate!!

The keynote speaker for the event was Jay Hewitt, an Ironman triathlete, international motivational speaker and practicing attorney. He was diagnosed with type 1 at age 24 and races to prove that diabetes cannot stop him from achieving his goals. His speech was amazing and so inspirational.  He truly does not let his diabetes slow him down and the stories that he shared prove it.

Jay with me and Nate


As if these 2 people were not cool enough in our book --- both pump with OmniPod!  Oh yea - even at 2-years old Nate understands the concept of  "same".

It was a great thrill to meet these 2 and many others during this special day.  Oh yea and did I mention that I started it off with a little introduction thanking the Dallas ISD for donating the table centerpieces which were beta fish.  I then went on to try and educate those there about type 1 and how with type 1 the beta cells do not produce any insulin . . . blah blah blah.  Easy peasy - right?  Yea - not so much!  As soon as the following words came out of my mouth:

Because my son, Nate has type 1 diabetes, his beta cells don't produce any insulin at all . . .

I was a mess.  A big bawling mess.  I tried to look out at the audience and visualize them in their underwear (ok, I learned that in high school speech class) but it totally didn't work.  Everyone I looked at was crying with me!!

So for the rest of my speech I looked directly down at my notes.

I was going to try and wing it at the advice of my husband but while I was up there I was so glad I had that little piece of paper to hold on to and stare at intently!

After I regained some composure I went on to say that Nate wears the OmniPod insulin pump (if you look closely Jim is holding a pod) . . . this is Nate's life support, but unfortunately it is not a cure.

I don't know why that was so hard for me to say.  It's not like I don't know that Nate has type 1 diabetes or that his beta cells don't produce insulin.  Good grief - I live with it 24/7 -- why do I still cry?  Oh well, that's another post for another day!

The Houston Family would like to thank Mayor Tom Leppert and his wife, Laura along with OmniPod and JDRF for making this day a huge success.  We enjoyed it and were thrilled to be able to be part of such a great cause.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010

A Breakfast Post

Some would say it is a love - hate relationship but it is really just a hate relationship for me.  I hate breakfast.  Not because I don't love me some pancakes, waffles, eggs, bacon or coffee - - - nope, I love all of the yummy-ness that is breakfast.  What I hate is that no matter what Nate eats for breakfast it looks like this:

(Sorry Facebook Friends - I know you have already had to endure this roller coaster ride today)

* Above photos were taken today after Super Bolus, no correction, and 7g of banana uncovered around 10:15 AM.

I am obviously trying to eliminate that AM spike but it seems no matter what I do it's always there.  I do believe it has a lot to do with the massive growth spurts that Nate goes through and the increased alkaline phosphatase when he is having these major growing spurts (note to Nate - please stop growing!  You are my baby boy!!) I have increased his basal starting at 5:30 AM, reduced his I:C ratio for breakfast and for the past two days tried the Super Bolus trick I learned from Lorraine.  

I received a lot of feedback today on Facebook from other D-rents that all said that with the wee ones -- their DexComs look like this is the AM too.  I hate to say it but it is so true - - - misery loves company!!  Thanks everyone for your words of wisdom and encouragement! Seriously, I am relieved to know that I am not the only one that is riding the roller coaster every morning. 

I haven't given up!  I increased his basal again so we will see what it looks like tomorrow and I will keep you posted.  

Wish us luck!! 

*** Adding this information for a good question asked . . . 
We always pre-bolus at least 10 minutes before breakfast but prefer 15.  Nate wakes up saying 'eat, eat, eat'. And we pump with Apidra.

Just a Mom

I am NOT a doctor, nor do I play one on this blog.

I AM a wife.
I AM the mom of 3 wonderful children.
I AM my son's pancreas.

The information provided on this blog is from our personal experiences with Type 1 diabetes. Because something works for us does not mean it will work for you.

Please consult your doctor if you have any questions or concerns about your health care options.

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