Back to Back

Wow, it feels like forever since I’ve actually had the time to post on back to back days.  We had a busy day of hockey and hockey related activities.  The morning started with the Mayor’s team fundraising at a Publix in Coconut Creek.  Thanks to the store’s generous patrons, his squad raised over $800.  Fortunately, he and the hubby were back in time to leave right way for Goalielock’s games.

Goalielock’s and his squad split the day dropping the first contest to the Hawks, but winning their second against the Toros.  I had a blast in the box with Tonya and DB during the first game.  Reunited and it felt so good!  Unfortunately, during he warmups for game two Goalielock’s left leg slid out on him and he pulled his groin.  Long story short, I walked out to hit the restroom pre-game and when I came back he was on the bench in a different jersey.  It only took me almost the entire first period to figure it out.  Needless to say, Goalielocks has been on solid regimen of ice for 20 and heat for 20 since he got home.

I’ve gotta give a shout to fellow hockey mom D. Green for the amazing ribbon she gave me.  I freaking love it.  It makes me wonder how the crafty gene skipped me entirely.  Truly, I have not one crafty bone in my body.  When I try to be crafty, it ends up looking like something you’d see on Netflix’s Nailed It. (love that show!) Nonetheless, since I don’t possess that skillset at all, I’m in awe of those who do it so well.

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Between Goalielock’s game, the Mayor had a four hour clinic.  We sent Goalielock’s to John’s house with the team, while we drove to Palm Beach to drop him off.   After dropping him off, we headed over to meet the team for some grub.  As for my Mayor, he’s completely exhausted after the craziness of his day.   It’s not often that he puts himself to bed this early!  Speaking of which, it’s time for me to head off  to practice my Swedish, read a bit and head to bed.

P.S.  Don’t forget to join Team Deb Force Five!

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It’s State Tournament Time

It’s state tournament time here in Florida! Goalielocks and I made the trek across Alligator Alley early this evening. Surprisingly, the Friday night traffic wasn’t too bad. When we drove over last year for the Mayor’s tournament, traffic was absolutely horrendous!

Meanwhile back in Palm Beach, the Mayor and his team took the ice against the Florida Panthers Gold. That team had been undefeated in league play until today. That’s right our squad took it to them winning 4-3 in regulation!!!! Awesome sauce! I wish I had more pictures to share, but the hubby is manning the bench with Coach P.

When I spoke with the Mayor after Goalielocks’ game, he was so excited for his team. They worked so hard and they play for each other. Their squad is absolutely special!

In Ft. Myers it was a tight contest between our boys and the league leading Gulf Coast Flames. Honestly, probably one of the better games that I’ve seen them play. They were in it to win it and nearly did.

Our boys carried a 2-0 lead with 10 minutes left in the third. We had a couple of mistakes and some penalties that cost us dearly. Goalielocks’ partner in crime played one hell of a game and gave his team a shot to win it.

To say it was excruciatingly painful when they tried the game up, would be a major understatement. The boys didn’t give up though or lose steam. They kept pushing and working hard. In the end, it ended up going to a shootout. Sadly, we didn’t come away with the W, but we did get a point.

Now we’re at the hotel. Honestly, it’s been a bit of disaster. Our first room smelled like a testing room for Phillip Morris or a room above a cigarette lounge. Now we’re on our second room and the toilet doesn’t work. Consequently, the security guard is now in the bathroom trying to fix the toilet. It was temporarily fixed and then stopped working again. If it weren’t 12:30 am I’d be more adamant about the issue, but I need to sleep. Oh the humanity, Hilton’s corporate is definitely going to hear about this one.

An Update To The Update

So here’s an update to the update on Goalielocks. We were in the ER in Southern New Hampshire medical center for several hours this afternoon. Based on his symptom and mechanism of injury, they ordered a CT scan. Unfortunately, the CT scan showed what they believed to be a small bleed on the brain.

As he spoke the words, my heart sunk. Brain bleeds are never good. The hospital is pretty small and wasn’t well suited to treat Goalielock’s injury. For example, if he needed surgery to alleviate pressure in the brain, they couldn’t do it. The ER doc felt it was likely non-surgical and an observation approach is likely the approach they’d take.

Consequently, he was transported via ambulance from Southern New Hampshire Medical Center to Massachusetts General in Downtown Boston. In order for this to happen, our incredible hockey family sprung into action: helping me pack the car, driving me to the hospital and bringing me the rental car tomorrow.

Our ride took about 45 minutes and he was triaged into the acute care part of their giant and impressive ER. Goalielocks was quick to notice his doctors were all Harvard affiliated. I’m pretty sure he was impressed. Nonetheless, we were there for several hours.

While he was in Mass General, his case was reviewed by his ER doctor, the attending ER doctor, neurosurgeon, neuro-radiologist, radiologist, pediatric neurosurgeon and the chief of neurology. In the end, they felt the hospital in Nashua misread the scan. There was no brain bleed present. None of their specialists saw bleeding on the brain!!! Thank God!

Our ER doctor was spot on, the emergency department in Nashua was right to send his case to them. They’re much better suited to accurately diagnosis these types of injures. Nonetheless, we’re both hungry and exhausted. Neither of us have eaten since 9:00 this morning. I didn’t feel right eating while Goalielocks waited to be cleared by the neurosurgeon. The good news is we have pizza on the way and a late check out. Undoubtedly, we’ll be sleeping in tomorrow.

Lastly, thanks for all the prayers and well wishes yesterday and today. They mean a lot and prayer certainly works! Special thank you to our hockey family for helping us out today. We love you to the moon and back!

Brilliant Combinations

When it comes to brilliant combinations, you may not think about designer dressed with sneakers.  Since I’m unable to wear heels or any other shoes except for tennis shoes, I’ve had to pair my BCBG dresses and nice jackets with my kicks.  Now I love my Asics, they’re the best running shoes around.  I just don’t love the dress and kicks look.

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It is reminiscent of when I worked in the insurance industry in Minnesota.  In the winter, I would wear boots or somewhat sensible shoes into the office.  Consequently, when I got to the office, I’d put on my stilettos.  Stilettos on the ice are a sure-fire way to break your back, hip or head.  Fortunately, there’s no ice or snow to contend with here.  Unfortunately, that just makes my shoes look like a grand fashion faux pas.  I have to keep reminding myself it is only temporary.

Last night, I went to spin class, which my tendons tolerated pretty well.  Admittedly, I had to modify my ride to accommodate the injury.  For example, instead of going into 2nd or 3rd, I would stay in the saddle.  I was able to ride in 2nd position for a while, but I had to be judicious about it because too much time or resistance in that position resulted in discomfort.

Tonight I went to yoga.  Let me tell you, yoga in running shoes is pretty darn clunky.  It would have been hard to do a flow class in my kicks.   I found that I couldn’t get into my arm balances as my shoes kept getting caught up in the mat.  Oh well, it is a small price to pay for fully recovered tendons (hopefully soon!)  Fortunately, my instructors at Burn have been amazing in helping me modify moves in the classes to protect my legs.  Rather than do a flow class, Monica led an amazing stretch class.  It was exactly what I needed.

Since I’m headed to Chi-Town on Friday, I’m trying to get some great workouts in before I go.   My new year’s resolution was to start attending the 5:30 am classes at Burn.  Thus far, I’m 0-3.  After tomorrow morning, I intend to be 1-3.  Tomorrow morning is a circuit burn class, which is the same class I attend on Saturdays.  My teacher, Amanda, is freaking phenomenal.  Not only does she make sure we’re all maintaining our forms, she’s quick to provide modifications for those of us nursing injuries.  It makes a huge difference!  I’ll let you know tomorrow night if I was able to get up at 5:00!

Lastly, we’re almost ready for Chicago.  The last of our winter wear should arrive yesterday.  I’m so looking forward to spending some quality time with Goalielocks and the Mayor.   Moreover, I looking forward to seeing my bestie Jenny and hanging out with my fabulous hockey parents.  As we held our poses tonight, I was reflecting on how lucky we are to have so many amazing people in our lives.  We’re truly blessed.   The photos I’ve included on the blog are from three of my favorite hockey trips: Ottawa, Peewee Quebec and Minneapolis.

Tonight’s song performed by Shakira at her Paris concert is a “Nothing Else Matters/Despedida” medley.  As an aside, “Nothing Else Matters” is one of my absolute favorite songs.  I loved watching this clip from her concert and witness the universal nature of a great song.  It is awesome hearing the audience sing along to it.

Wintry Weekend

Wintry Weekend

Our wintry weekend was cool, quick and quite jolly thanks to our hockey family.  Last night, we headed over to Finland’s house for Goalielocks’ team party.  As expected, the party did not disappoint.  All of us had a marvelous and jolly time from start to finish.  Heck, we would have stayed later if the Mayor wasn’t obsessed with getting enough rest for his games today.

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Wintry Weekend

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The food was exquisite and unending.  We brought chili cheese dip and a baked brie.  Unfortunately, the hubby worked late, so we were about an hour late.  As I was getting dressed, our dog Maya stole the bake brie out of its pan and devoured it quickly.  Fortunately, she didn’t break my brie pan and it wasn’t cooked yet, so she didn’t burn herself.  As I waited for the Hubby, I headed up to Publix to buy another wheel of brie.

We brought beer, ciroc and LaCRoix as beverages to accompany our food selections. As always, Peach Ciroc mixed with Peach Pear LaCroix was a solid beverage choice.  This drink, which is both low calorie and low carb was truly magnificent.  The best part, however, was the lack of hangover this morning.  I’ll have to buy another bottle before our next party!

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Like I said, we could have stayed at the party all night.  These people are our family and time flies when you’re hanging out with them.  Unfortunately, the Mayor had games this morning, so we had to be somewhat responsible with our night.  I love that my Mayor is so diligent about getting enough sleep before he plays!

This morning’s game was pretty good.  We ended up winning 2-0, but could have easily been much 6-0.  Their goalie was on fire that game!  Unfortunately, as well as the morning game went, the evening game was disastrous.  The sin bin was busy including a visit from the Mayor.  Of course, as he entered the box, he plead his innocence.  Truth be told, the Mayor had the hit of the game.  Unfortunately, there’s no checking at peewee. Doh!

As we left the rink, Air Force One was taxiing off to take off from PBI.   We drove down Southern until we found a spot just North of the road to watch the jet take off.  My kid’s are aviation fanatics, so this a takeoff we simply couldn’t miss.  No sooner had we pulled over when Air Force One started barreling down the runway.  While Hubby and the Mayor videotaped it, I face-timed Goalielocks so he could watch it live.  When I tell you they’re into aviation, I cannot emphasize enough how much they love it.

Air Force One took of into the sunset.  It was a beautiful, resplendent sunset as the world’s most advanced jumbo jet climbed into the sky.  The Mayor was beyond thrilled to have watched the big, beautiful bird leave PBI.  Now we’re home trying to unthaw as we cook fajitas!  The air temperatures are only in the 50s here in South Florida, which by are standards is quite cold.  Consequently, unthawing from a day at the rink is a bit harder tonight!

Finally, I wanted to again share the link for a family that is in dire need of our support during an imaginably difficult time.  If you are able to, please consider helping this family.  Here is the link: Youcaring

Tonight’s song is “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” as performed by Michael Buble.

 

Hockey Mom Holiday Goals

Hockey Mom Holiday Goals

I’ve been thinking about the holidays for a couple of weeks now and thought it might be time to make a list of my hockey mom holiday goals.   Hockey moms, given our crazy schedule, take a little bit of a different approach to the holidays.  As much as I’d love to go crazy decorating the house, I have neither the time nor the money.  After all, Goalielocks already needs a new set of leg pads.

Here’s my list:

  1. Put the Christmas tree up before Christmas and take it down before Valentine’s Day.   So we’ll definitely get the tree up by Christmas, but Valentine’s Day feels a bit aspirational given our January/February schedule.  The oddsmakers have the odds at 25:1 for tree removal before Valentine’s Day.  Coincidentally, the Mayor will be taking bets….                                                                           images (34)
  2. Try not to gain the holiday 10 on top of the hockey 5.  This one will be tough with holiday parties, hockey games, cookies and drinks galore.  But, hey at least I have goals.                                 e4bef8c4247a68cf899b9d503ba10787
  3. I will try to bake Christmas cookies before Christmas and hide them so we have cookies through Christmas.   At least, I’ll have some awesome cookies from BG to tide me over until I can bake mine! 10._SugarCookie
  4. Spend loss money on things and more on experiences.  There isn’t a gift in the world that can compare to the fun we had as a family in Norway.  Truly our Norway trip was the best gift we ever gave ourselves and our kids.  I’d go back any day to see that beautiful place and the beautiful patina on its statues and metal work.  Of course for the cost of Goalielocks’ leg pads, I could buy a ticket to Oslo… (I’m only kidding Goalielocks.)IMG_0274
  5. My goal is to stay in the gym, on the running path and on my mat throughout the holidays, so I can stay sane.  Yes dear hubby, this one’s for you.  This should also help with goal number 2.
  6. This year my goal is to create a Christmas card on Shutterfly and order it in time for Christmas.  However, there is a slight chance here that your Christmas card may be delivered with your Valentine’s day card.  Christmas cards
  7. My last goal for this holiday season is to enjoy the time I have with my family and friends.  These are the people that make my world go round and I couldn’t imagine life without them.

Tonight’s song in keeping with the holiday theme is “All I Want For Christmas Is You” by Mariah Carey.

Cue the Exhaustion

Cue the Exhaustion

Cue the exhaustion folks, it’s Sunday night after a major holiday and hockey tournament.  Undoubtedly, I am exhausted beyond belief along with all of my fellow hockey parents.  I’m positive I’m not the only one regretting not taking tomorrow off to recover.  It’s month end, which means I cannot afford to miss a minute let a lone a day.  So I’ll be back to work tomorrow at 8:00 am with bells on.

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Our Thanksgiving holiday was marvelous.  We had a great Thanksgiving dinner at Jon and Brandi with family and friends that have become family.   After a great dinner, we played some Right Left Center and another game with a box.   Jake had a great night and walked away with some moula after winning two rounds of the game.  After playing games, we watched Star Wars “The Force Awakens.”  I know I’m late to the party here, but I enjoyed the movie.  Although, it is sad to watch knowing we lost Carrie Fisher way too soon.

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I wrote about our early hockey games on the blog earlier and today was no exception.  We were back to the rink by 9:00 am and didn’t leave until after 4:00 pm.  It was a fun weekend at the rink with our hockey family.  These tournaments are exhausting, but are much like a family reunion.   Its a great opportunity to catch up with former teammates, their families and other friends we’ve made throughout the years.

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Yesterdays games were awesome, but I still had quite a few visitors yesterday in the Sin Bin with a lot less (thank goodness) today.   At U-14  body checking is legal and these hits are incredibly loud and percussive.  I’m pretty sure they build the boards to amplify the noise of the hits and increase the hockey moms collective anxiety.

Our boys finally clicked this weekend, after a couple of painful months, which was awesome to see.  These kids have so much potential there aren’t enough superlatives in the English word to adequately describe it.  Nevertheless, I am beyond proud of each of them for their efforts.  As the team went into the championship game, they were definitely the underdog. In the end, we lost a nail biter to a strong Russian team in sudden death OT.

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Of course the bitter reality of leaving the rink at 4:00 pm on a Sunday, is that I still had to grocery shop, finish the laundry and finish all my other errands upon leaving the rink.   I’m pretty sure I heard a collective ugh as us parents left the rink to head home and on to our errands and chores.

Tonight’s song is for my Goalielocks.  Enjoy “May We All” by Florida Georgia Line.

Friday Afternoon Bowling

Friday Afternoon Bowling

Today I spent my Friday afternoon bowling at a team building event for one of our business partners.  On the heels of yesterday’s BBQ for our team, bowling and building relationships with our business partners was awesome.  Truly,  I spent a good part of my week building relationships and on employee engagement.  Is there anything better?

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Unequivocally, one of the things I love about my job is the people I work with.  Some are on my team, but many work across the organization in the departments we work with daily.  Silos are the greatest danger to any organization.  Make it your mission to remove silos from our place of employment.  Make it your mission to make positive relationships with the people that support your department, but may work outside of it.

 

That’s all I have for career/work advice tonight.  Let’s talk about the bowling.  I’m awful.   Truly I don’t have enough fingers on my hand to count the gutter balls I threw today.  Consequently, during our second game I switched to bowling from my left hand.  The first ball I threw left handed resulted in (gulp) a gutter ball.  I promptly followed it up with a right handed spare.   Thereafter, I alternated between the hands in resulted in a score that was double my second game.

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In fact, in game two I even led for a moment.  Albeit a brief moment.  For that brief moment between the 2nd and 3rd frame of game 2, I was in the lead.  Since this never happens, I simply had to take a picture of my amazing accomplishment.  Unfortunately, I followed it up with some more gutter balls before netting another spare and two strikes.  You can only imagine the awesomeness of my post-strike strut.

My AD and I had joined the white team.  There were five teams and we rocked it.  As sure as I was that I would torpedo the team, we killed it.  We had a blast!  It was such a great opportunity to meet new  people, connect with those we know and build positive relationships.  While I will never become a professional bowler (cue the small violin here,) I look forward to my next bowling trip my colleagues.  Special thanks to our friends TE and NM for the invite.

Tonight’s song “Smooth” by Santana ft. Rob Thomas.

demand better

Demand Better

One of PanCan’s most powerful slogans is demand better.  Demand better for patients and for survival.  Pancreatic Cancer is now the 3rd leading cause of cancer related deaths in the U.S.  By 2020, pancreatic cancer is forecasted to be the 2nd leading cause of cancer related deaths surpassing breast cancer.  Meanwhile the 5 year survival rate for pancreatic cancer has increased from 7% to 8%.  While the increase is welcome, the survival rate for pancreatic cancer is still way too low.

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The diagnosis of pancreatic cancer to anyone’s friend or family member is horrifying.  What I respected so much about Debbie is that she lived her life fully not allowing the disease to define her.   I’m grateful to have had her in my life and for the example she set.  Additionally, she was the epitome of grace under pressure.  In the midst of her treatment, she was committed to making the future brighter for all pancreatic cancer patients.   Our commitment to the cure steadfast driven by her absence, which is felt profoundly by all of us.  I promised her that I would never give up the fight that I would always wage hope as her proxy.

Join us or donate to Team Deb Force Five here.

The beginning

The Beginning

Tonight I’d like to take you you back to the beginning of our story with John and Debbie as I continue my posts of gratitude.  When we met John and Debbie, we were still playing rec league hockey up at skate zone in addition to travel.  I know exactly what you’re thinking and you’re right.  We were absolutely crazy back then.  TK had just started skating and was an impressive player out of the gate.  The hubby knew instantly that he needed to make the jump from rec to travel.

It wasn’t until our first year of peewee, however, that TK and Goalielock’s ended up on a team together.  We had incredible group of kids, parents and coaches.  To date, that season remains as one of my favorite and most memorable seasons.  Debbie was our manager and as always was on top of everything.  She did an incredible job!   She organized our out of state tournament to Boston, which ended up being a magical albeit blizzard filled weekend.

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For us, Boston almost didn’t happen.  The year before Goalielocks’ peewee A season, we started our own business. It was a huge, scary leap for the hubby and I.  The November of our peewee A season, hubby took a tennis ball to the eye in a freak accident that left him out of work for weeks.  Can you imagine the stress?  We had no employees, as finding qualified help in S. Florida is like finding a needle in a haystack, and the business was starting to gain momentum.   Honestly, I was ready to put him in a bubble.

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No sooner had he gone back to work when he had a run in with a SUV and an unscrupulous driver in our neighborhood.  I’ll never forget when he called me from work to tell me he had broken his arm and he was driving to the doctor.  He’s absolutely crazy and did in fact drive himself, with a major break to his dominant arm, to the urgent care.  At the time, Jake was a sophomore in high school and not yet able to drive while the younger two were still in elementary.  To complicate things further each of the boys was playing travel hockey at the time with scattered practice times all week long.

I met hubby at the urgent care where they had tried to convince him to take an ambulance to the hospital.   There was no way my hubby was going to pay $500 for an ambulance ride 1.5 miles down the road to the hospital!  I picked him and got him into the ER right away.   Fortunately, the Bethesda West ER was incredible and took care of him immediately.

Hubby was in incredible pain and was having trouble recollecting what happened.  There was no way I was comfortable leaving him in the ER.  As this craziness was transpiring, our boys were still at school and After the Bell.  Thank God for the John and Debbie!  They had become neighbors when they moved into the Canyons a few months previously.  John and Debbie were our knights in shining armor.  They picked up the kids, fed them and even helped with homework.  Honestly, I cannot tell you what we would have done without them that day.

While we were in the ER, it was determined that hubby would have to be admitted to the hospital.   Moreover, he was scheduled to have major surgery on his arm the following morning.  Hubby was getting some new hardware!  When I went to pick the boys up from John and Debbie’s house, I was a hot mess.  They were so kind.  I left their house to bring the boys up to see the hubby in the hospital.

Fortunately, Hubby’s surgery went well.   His blood pressure was quite low due to the morphine, so he wasn’t able to get out during the day.  Once again John and Debbie came to the rescue taking care of our boys.   Through the afternoon and early evening, his blood pressure stabilized and his pain became manageable.  The doctor wrote the discharge orders with the caveat that he could urinate post surgery.  Oh boy, the struggle was real.  They brought him something he could use bedside, but he was having none of that.

He was finally able to go, so I started to help him un-tether the cords, unplug the IV and take off the blood pressure cuff.  This created a problem as we were at a hospital that serves a largely geriatric population and therefore uses bed alarms.   Long story short, as soon as I took up the blood pressure cuff, we set off a code blue.  As I walked towards the door to see what all the commotion was, I quickly realized that we were the commotion and they, meaning all the doctors and nurses on duty, were coming for us as they responded to the code blue.  I greeted them at the door to tell them he was simply trying to pee.  The nurses laughed and apologized for forgetting to turn off the bed alarm.  Thankfully, he was able to pee and he was discharged from the hospital.H

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It was weeks before the hubby could drive again and my mom wasn’t able to come down until a week later.  In the interim, John and Debbie were instrumental in helping us function as a normal family.  They helped us with school and hockey.  We couldn’t have done it without them and are forever grateful to them.  While we were always at ready to return the favor, it was always a favor you didn’t want to return.

You never want your friends find themselves in a health emergency.  I never in a million years thought that in less than six weeks, they’d need us just as we had needed them.  I’ll never forget March 4th, 2015.  I had caravanned up to Orlando for our employee roadshow where I was one of the presenters.  This was my first time presenting to the group, so naturally I was petrified.

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No sooner had we finished presenting, when I received a call from my hubby who was hysterical.  I was petrified.  Quickly, I walked out of the meeting room into the long windowed hallway that ran the length of the building.  I thought something horrible happened to the kids while I was in Orlando, so I was terrified.  Once he was able to collect himself, he told me that Debbie had been diagnosed with stage iv cancer.  My heart stopped as I collapsed back against the wall falling to my knees as I began to cry. 

At this time, they only knew that it was stage iv cancer and they needed our help.  We were going to be there for them in anyway they needed nothing more had to be said.  The “Meatloaf rule” went into full effect that day.   Today I’m grateful for the beauty of friends that become family.  For the type for friends that our always there at life’s lowest moments as well as life’s highest.  By the way, John even helped the hubby regain strength with some intense weight exercises.

 

 

In sixteen days, we’ll be running the Broward Palm Beach Purple Stride event in Debbie’s honor.  Please help us wage hope by joining us or donating to Team Deb Force Five.

Tonight’s song: Forever Young