Friday, June 23, 2006


June 23, 2006

I sometimes wonder what the gelcap Erin takes every day actually has inside. Certainly, it has some anti-tumor something, because her tumor is keeping its head down. But could that be all? Consider her schedule for the last week:

Last Saturday--ninth birthday party (lake swimming with 18 of her best friends), plus a sleepover

Last Monday--shopping for a kicky outfit to wear to Washington (successful)

Last Tuesday--fly to Washington DC (first flight cancelled for equipment issues; second flight delayed because of weather). Total travel time: 12 hours.

Last Wednesday--lobby on Capitol Hill--6 meetings. (missed departure flight; caught later flight--no seats available for College Station, so Walter picks us up at Intercontinental in Houston; arrive home at midnight)

Last Thursday--depart for Houston at 7:30 (a.m.) for a day with her church group at the Houston Aquarium

Yesterday--errands, including blood counts (white count has finally returned to the normal range--first time since we returned for Disney), and an evening festivities at the Tjoelkers

Today--leave for Temple at 8:00 (again, in the morning) for a birthday party at a horseback riding school plus swimming. When she returns at 4:00 she will go to a second birthday party/sleepover

Are you feeling sluggish in comparison?

Let me tell you a little more about Gold Ribbon Days and our visit with Chet Edwards. We had meetings scheduled with staffers and aides from the following offices: Kay Bailey Hutchison (her staff calls her Senator KBH), John Cornyn, Joe Barton, and Kay Granger. We actually got the see Chet himself.

He met us at the door, brought us in to his office, sat Erin down right next to him at the conference table, and proceeded to share Skittles with her while he listened attentively and took notes for the next 40 minutes. Twice his staffers slipped in and tried to move him along to his next appointment, but he brushed them off so he could continue to listen to what we had to say. He asked intelligent questions. When he had heard what I had to say, he looked me in the eye and told me we could count on his support for the Conquer Childhood Cancer Act of 2006.

Two planes tickets to DC: $950
A night in the Holiday Inn in the nation's capitol: $198
Meals and snacks in various airports while waiting for flights: $40
Having a Congressman listen: priceless

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