Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Bandelier Exploring!

Last Saturday, we adventured to Bandelier National Park for a fun day with the family. I have not been to Bandelier since elementary school. My last experience there was actually horrible. I was very sick from the bus ride and I did not go into a single cave because I did not want to climb the ladders, even the small ones. My love for the trails and outdoor adventures has grown and I am learning to try and deal with my set-backs. I even had to ride a bus from White Rock to the park because that is the only way you can get into the park during the summer season. We started with taking the Main Loop trail and explored all the caves and ruins.

The boys LOVED it! They loved climbing the ladders and trying to find pictures on the cave walls.

We ate our packed lunches and then made our way to the Alcove House. Connor and I did not go up to the Alcove House. Not quite ready for that yet! In order to reach the Alcove House you must climb a series of ladders and stairs 140 feet high above the canyon. Bradley and Josh decided to climb this together. Maybe one day I will be able to do this.
Alcove House, 140 foot climb to the top 
Bradley and Josh are climbing the ladder to reach the top! 
Next time we go I am definitely buying the guidebook that you can purchase for a dollar. We regretted it once we were on the trails and wanted to learn more about what we were finding along the trail. We thought it was just a map but it is filled with information about the ruins and painting that you can find along the trail. 

I highly recommend going to this park and exploring it! It was so much fun and very kid friendly. I want to also explore Chaco Canyon and the Gila Cliff Dwellings when it cools off. I have been to Mesa Verde and I want to go back soon. Mesa Verde is my favorite! 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Family Update!

I decided to try to update my blog again! I miss playing around with my blog and writing about my family and sharing things that are important to me. My goal is try and update my blog once a week. I am going to really try and stay on top of it. I find it is a great way to log our adventures and share with family and friends. Since I have not updated in a while, I decided to give you five facts about each family member. I hope you enjoy!


1. Bradley starts kindergarten in August. I still cannot believe he is going to school.
2. He is very much into policemen right now. He has wanted to be a policeman for several years now. It is the only thing that has really stuck with him. He changes his favorite color every day, literally.
3. He only will eats his vegetables raw right now. Any veggies cooked is a thumbs down.
4. He has amazing luck at arcade games. The last three times we have gone to an arcade, he has hit the jackpot!
5. He really enjoys riding his new bike that grandma and papa bought him. He is still using the training wheels but hopefully he can ditch them soon.  


1. Connor will be starting fourth grade in the fall. It is so surreal. I cannot believe it!
2. Connor loves playing lacrosse. He has recently been playing goalie and multiple field positions. His team won in a tournament held in Durango and they also won the local championship.
3. He is still extremely creative and always is working on a craft or taking something apart to see how it works. He loves science so much and is wondering when he can take Chemistry classes.
4. He loves snacking on sunflower seeds. He puts a big handful at once into his mouth, just like his dad.
5. He is a little Paul Bunyan and has some major lumberjack cutting skills. He can swing an axe very well and enjoys cutting down branches and small trees at the ranch.


1. Josh is still working for the fire department in Los Alamos and still loving it! I am so glad he loves his job so much.
2. He is currently working his way through his never ending "Honey Do List". He is working on tiling the kitchen and laundry room right now.
3. He is enjoying geocaching with the boys on hiking trails.
4. He recently got a newer diesel truck. It is bright, fire engine red!
5. In April, he was baptized and confirmed into the Catholic Church.


1. I will be starting working full-time again in the fall. I will be teaching third grade at Enchanted Hills! I am so excited to get back into the classroom.
2. This summer has really thrown me off my health and wellness goals. I cannot get my traction.
3. I am obsessed with Imagine Dragons new album! It is so good!
4. I have been watching The Handmaid's Tale on Hulu. It is amazing! I am seriously on the edge of my seat during every episode. It is so intense.
5. I am looking forward to the rest of my summer and ready to get outside and explore!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Walk of Hope: Day 5

Hi Everyone!

Today is just a simple video of pictures of Bradley. This is just to remind that Bradley is just like any other little 2 year old little boy. Thanks again for watching and please help us support the JDRF by going to our walk page and making a small donation. Every little donation is going to add up! Thank you!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Walk of Hope: Day 4

Today is all about Bradley's continuous glucose monitor (CGM). This thing is amazing! I believe it has saved Bradley's life several times. I cannot imagine not having it. It really keeps my mind at ease and helps us manage his diabetes a lot more effectively and quickly.

Bradley wears a CGM 24 hours a day. It gives his blood sugar, it shows you if his sugar is steady, dropping, or climbing and how fast it's moving there. It also alarms if Bradley's blood sugar is low. It does not replace his meter, he still needs his finger pokes. There is a lag time with his CGM so we always have to give him a finger poke if we are going to have a meal, or if he needs a correction for being too low. 

He gets his CGM replaced once a week. Sometimes he is very discouraged to get it replaced and other times he is excited. It changes weekly- as you will see in the video, he did not want a new sensor this week.

These are the steps you will see in the video:

  • He gets a numbing cream on about an hour beforehand
  • Next we use alcohol to clean the area
  • Then, we apply SkinTac to help the bandage stay on (it has to stay on all week)
  •  Using the applicator, we insert the sensor, it uses a needle to insert the sensor under the skin
  • The applicator is taken off the sensor
  • We then attach the transmitter

Just this year CGMs have been approved for Bradley's age group. I am so thankful for the advancements that science makes every day. This is truly a lifesaving device!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Walk of Hope: Day 3

Today I am going to be sharing with you how we handle high blood sugar (hyperglycemia). High blood sugar is very tricky to manage since Bradley is so small. You have to be extremely careful about treating high blood sugar. His insulin takes three hours to work through his body. If you give him extra insulin too early, he is probably going to drop. Scheduling, recording, meal planning and looking for patterns plays a very important role in helping manage Bradley's high blood sugar. 

Here are some causes of high blood sugar:

  • Too much food (carbohydrates)
  • Too little insulin
  • Sickness/infection
  • Stress
  • Growth 
  • High elevation (in our experience)
How do we treat high blood sugar??
  • Give extra insulin
  • Fluids
How does high blood sugar effect Bradley??

When Bradley's sugars are high he usually is fussy and anxious. He also sometimes complains that he is hungry. 

It is an ongoing balancing-act to keep Bradley's sugar stable, especially since he is so young. The endocrinologist does not want to be too aggressive with his diabetes(giving him a strong does of insulin) because of his age. They rather have him a little high than too low. Whenever we get his A1C (his blood sugar report card), I always want it better. The doctor reminds me every time that it is too dangerous to do any better. Bradley's body changes really quickly. His blood sugar can be above 300, and 30 minutes late it can be at 100. He is extremely sensitive to sugar, and also extremely sensitive to insulin. Some days the numbers look perfect and you think "oh wow! I got this!". Then the next day, he is high, and then low and you can't seem to get it just right. AND you didn't do anything different than the day before! Sometimes it doesn't make any sense and it can can be so frustrating. 

Before the 1980s, Type 1 Diabetics were treated with animal insulin. For many years, drug companies used pancreases to extract insulin from slaughtered cows and pigs, which didn't need their organs anymore. Animal insulin saved many lives, but it had a few problems: many people were allergic and it did not work as quickly as human insulin. In 1978, they created the first DNA insulin, which is identical to what our pancreas produces. Breakthroughs would not be possible without research support. Please support the JDRF and thank you so much for reading my blog! I think it is so important to spread Type 1 Awareness. Thanks! 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Day 2: Walk of Hope

Today I am going to be discussing low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). The scariest thing about low blood sugar, for Brad and many children with Type 1, is that it happens so incredibly fast. If you do not catch it and treat it quickly it can be extremely dangerous. In our experience, low blood sugars occur even when we are doing everything correctly.

 Here are some factors that cause low blood sugar:
  • Too much insulin
  • Extra activity/exercise
  • Giving an insulin shot in the muscle
  • Taking a hot shower or bath after an insulin shot
  • Not eating enough food at meal time
  • Late on schedule meal/snack
  • Hot weather
How do we know when his blood sugar is low?

We have to test his blood sugar and if it is below 80, we have to treat quickly with sugar. We usually give Bradley juice or chocolate milk to treat his lows. Then, we have to wait and retest his blood sugar to make sure his number is above 80. Sometimes we can tell if Bradley's blood sugar is low. He usually gets sweaty and his mood quickly changes. But not always, sometimes there are no warnings or symptoms. The lowest Bradley's sugar has gone is 48 and anything below 50 is extremely dangerous. 

If his low blood sugar goes untreated, he could go unconscious and/or have a seizure. If this happens, we have to treat him with an emergency glucagon shot and call 911. He would have to be put in the hospital for treatment. If a glucagon shot is not administered he could die. 

Some children have died in their sleep from low blood sugar. It is extremely dangerous and you have to be on alert all the time. Bradley's blood sugar frequently does drop in the middle of the night so I do check him every two hours at night to make sure his blood sugar is staying steady. 

We test Bradley's blood sugar with a glucose meter and a continuous glucose monitor. The glucose meter was invented in the 1960s. It was not until the 1980s that glucose meters were available for patients at home. I do not know how families were able to manage their children before this time. It would be impossible to manage Bradley without his meter. I am so thankful for scientists and the researchers that work on improving the management of Type 1 Diabetes. Again, that is why we continue to support the JDRF. Please consider making a donation (every little bit makes a difference). Thank you!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Walk of Hope: Day 1

Today I am sharing with you how Bradley gets his insulin on a daily basis. Brad's body does not produce insulin on its own. In order for him to get insulin, we have to give him shots. He typically gets five shots a day: breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner and bedtime. He gets them in his arm, leg or stomach area. He prefers getting them in his arm or stomach. He complains when he gets them in his legs.

The drops you see on this spoon is how much insulin Bradley gets after each meal. It is a half of unit of insulin. Not very much at all. I cannot get over how something so small can make such an impact on his body. As he grows, he will need more but right now this is plenty of insulin for most meals.

Half Unit of Insulin

This is what a half unit of insulin looks like in the needle when you draw it (this is usually what he gets after meals). It is as thin as a line on a paper. It is so important that you do not give him too much insulin.

One Unit of Insulin

 If you give him a smudge more insulin his blood sugar will drop and that it very dangerous. He could have seizures, pass out and/or go into a diabetic coma. 

I am so thankful for all the research that has happened for diabetics. 100 years ago Bradley would have not been expected to live because there was no fast-acting insulin. Now there is and it allows Bradley to lead a very normal, healthy life. His life span is just like everyone else. All this is because of research. 80 percent of money raised by the JDRF goes directly to support research. Please help me and support the JDRF so we can continue to make advances and better the lives of Type 1 Diabetics.