Good News

Did you hear the good news??? NO MORE SCANS!!!

If you hadn’t heard the good news yet, here it is! Tristyn recently met with her team up at LDS hospital and they informed her that she will not need to be re-scanned in three months. They said that the tiny light that showed up on her last scan could have been anything and that waiting around for another scan would just be unnecessary torture at this point. They are very pleased with the results of Tristyn’s last scan and said that the only reason that Tristyn would ever need a scan in the future is if something peculiar showed up in her blood work.

Tristyn will continue to go in for regular checkups as the doctor’s work to taper her off of her post transplant medications. She will also continue to have blood work done so the doctor’s can keep an eye on how everything is going with her recovery and with her remission. These minor check ups are nothing compared to the constant medical attention Tristyn has had to endure in the past.

We are so grateful to be at this stage in the recovery process and to have everything going so well! The next steps will be to get Tristyn completely off all medications and to have all of her child vaccinations redone over time. We are finally feeling like we have found our new normal and it is great! Words cannot describe how grateful we are for Tristyn’s remission and the numerous blessing that have come with it.

Looking forward to many more happy days ahead!

1 Year Scan

This past week was Tristyn’s first pet scan since receiving the news that she was in remission back in February. This month marks one year since Tristyn entered the hospital for her bone marrow transplant. We are pleased to announce that the results from this scan are MOSTLY good! They said that there are no real significant changes since her last scan! The reason we use the word “mostly” is because there was one small little flicker of light that the doctor’s are unsure about. The way a pet scan works is it causes the cancer in your body to light up on the scan, however, it can also cause other things to light up as well like heightened activity in the kidneys, for example. In this case, there is a small light showing up near Tristyn’s groin that the doctor’s are unsure about. They don’t think it is cancer. They pointed out that it could have been caused by a number of other situations and that her cancer has never shown up in that area of her body before. They have decided that the best thing to do is to have Tristyn re-scanned in 3 months, just to be safe and to make sure that this peculiar lit up region near her groin does not change during that time.

Despite the news not being “perfect,” we are very optimistic and hopeful that Tristyn’s Hodgkin’s Lymphoma is behind us. It has been a long journey, and we are so grateful to continue to move forward with our lives and make the most out of every day that we have been blessed with. Thank you all so much for the love, prayers, and support. We will keep you posted on Tristyn’s recovery!

Kauai

When Tristyn was first diagnosed with cancer, some good friends of her family approached her parents and said, “when Tristyn is finished with this whole cancer thing, we want you all to go stay in our vacation home in Hawaii.” This last week we were finally able to accept this generous gift and stay in their home in Kauai. The trip was absolutely incredible. We made memories that will last us a life time and experienced a sense of healing as we celebrated Tristyn’s remission as a family. We are so grateful to this family and their generosity and can not thank them enough.

Here is a break down of our trip!

The House

The home that was generously gifted to us for the week was located up in the hills of Kapaa. The views were amazing!

Scarlett loved being naked, playing in the rain, and eating the fresh fruit from the yard.

Kealia Beach

This was our favorite beach for playing in the waves! The waves were awesome and the scenery was beautiful! We spent a lot of our time here.

“Our Spot”

Unreal Sunsets

Shopping in Kapaa

Haena Hike to Hanakapiai Beach

This hike was NOT easy! But it was beautiful!

If you don’t want to do the insanely long and treacherous hike to Hanakapiai, then try this gorgeous beach just before the trail head!

Up the mountain…

THE BEACH! Hanakapiai was hands down the most unbelievable beach we have ever been to. The price you pay from the hike is absolutely worth it for the the paradise you arrive at in the end!

Cool Roadside Lookout in Princeville

Wailua Falls

Na Pali Coast

This catamaran ride along the Na Pali Coast was definitely one of our favorite highlights. These locations on the island are only accessible by boat and they are out of this world!

King Kong profile, as seen in the old movies!
Kind of hard to see, but there is a black billy goat up on the green grass to the right of the waterfall!

Waimea Canyon

They call this spot “The Grand Canyon of the Pacific.” It was very grand!

Hindu Monastery

Not allowed to take pictures in most areas so this is all we got!

Mango Festival

Not as cool as it sounded so here is a picture of the beach by the festival…

Poipu Beach

We don’t have a lot of pictures of this beach because we were snorkeling most of the time, but the snorkeling was amazing! (sorry we forgot the gopro)

This is the road to Poipu. Looks more like the road to Narnia.

Kahili Beach

Beautiful beach with a cool inlet and a rope swing!

Queens Bath

This spot was another one of our favorite places on the island. The clear blue water splashing up against the black rocks was like something out of a movie. In addition to the beautiful scenery, the place was loaded with sea turtles!

Short hike leading to the bath.

Bath #1 with waterfall.

Bath #2, aka “sea turtle bay”, aka “one of the coolest things we have ever experienced!”

Queens Bath & other amazing natural pools.

Opaeikaa Falls

Ruins

The island is covered with ancient abandoned ruins! Pretty cool!

Lydgate Beach

This beach was really cool and especially good for kids! They have a large section of the ocean closed off by a man made rock formation. This makes for an awesome little pool for the kids as well as some great snorkeling! We saw a barracuda!

Hawaii exceeded all of our expectations. We never would have thought that this trip would be so different from anything we had ever experienced. We are so grateful to the family that let us stay in their home. Thank you so so much! We will cherish these memories for the rest of our lives!

July in Review

We had quite the eventful July! Being swamped with moving, vacations, and job changes made it difficult to post consistently. Here is a review of our exciting month!

Independence Day

Good Food and Good People

Tristyn’s new hair looks a lot like her little brother’s!

We bought our first home!

We feel truly blessed to finally get into our first home! We have received so much financial help from so many people to help keep us on top of our medical bills. Thank you so much to everyone who has supported us. You made our dream a reality!

Moving out of the basement apartment!

Home Sweet Home!

FaceApp

Yes, this happened…. It was deleted shortly thereafter because of the Russians spies!

Bear Lake

Sorry, we did a terrible job taking pictures on this trip!

As you can see, July was pretty crazy! It was stressful at times, but mostly, it was a blast! The term “work hard, play hard” definitely sums it up. This summer is flying by but we can’t wait to see what the rest of the season will bring!

5 Years

It has now been 5 years since we started our journey together as husband and wife. We have had our fair share of ups and downs, but we feel that the good greatly outweighs the bad. There is no greater joy that can come in this life than the joy that your family can bring you. We look forward to spending everyday for the rest of our lives together and continuing to grow our little family over time. Love you forever!

Mountains to Climb

Everyone in this life will at sometime be given a mountain to climb. No one is exempt from going through hard things. These types of trials are meant to shape us and make us stronger than we were before. The growth that we gain from these experiences is completely dependent upon how we respond. There will always be pain and sorrow, but we get to decide whether we want to focus on that pain, or focus on the hope of a better tomorrow. We can still make the most of every single day. We can still be happy amidst the chaos. Strive to focus on the good that is in your life and the blessings that you do have. This type of attitude will make the long days feel shorter and the tall mountains seem smaller.

In addition to this, remember that you are NOT alone. You have a Father in Heaven who loves you. You have a Savior who suffered and felt the pain that you are going through right now so that He could be there for you when you needed Him most. There are also people all around you, seen and unseen, who will be there for you. These people WANT to help you through your journey. Rely on them, find strength in each other, and your bond with those people will be fortified in such a way that nothing will ever come between you.