June 6, 2005
Children's Miracle Network Telethon
and Ambrosia's birthday
Good morning, one and all!

Whew...this has been one crazy weekend!

Thursday night, Aurora had dress rehearsal for her
recital.  Friday night, she had the first recital show,
followed by two shows on Saturday.  We left the second
show early, to beat a path to Children's Hospital, to
appear on the Children's Miracle Network Telethon.  After
getting home at the beastly hour of midnight, Nick and I
slept a few hours, and got up to finish party preparations
for Ambrosia's birthday party Sunday afternoon.  I told

Aurora's recital was loooonnnnnggg.  Very, very, long.  
She did well, in the few minutes we got to see her!  
Apparantly the Irish Step teacher wasn't too interested in
choreagraphing a dance - it was the shortest in the show
by several minutes.  On the flip side, someone was very
interested in choreographing ballet solos...for the same 3
or 4 teenagers.  They got 5-10 minute segments, while
entire classes were granted less than 2 minutes.  Yes, the
ballet half of the show was disappointing and tedious.  
The second half of the show where other disciplines were
showcased, was more balanced (with the glaring
exception of Irish Step - you know, the one
we pay for).  In
the end, all that matters is that Aurora enjoyed herself.  
As I work to regain my sanity...I'll keep telling myself that...

Saturday night's telethon gig was fun, but exhausting for
the kids.  We were told we were the 10 o'clock interview,
so we got special permission to leave in the middle of the
second act of the recital and ran like crazy to get to the
hospital.  We were frazzled, but made it by 9:50, only to
find out we were the "10:00
hour interview" - translation it
happens during the hour, but not at 10:00.  In fact, the
interview was really scheduled for 10:57 p.m. .  Neat.  All
the panic had been for naught.  

Oh well, it gave us time to meet some great people, and to
feed the kids in the complimentary commissary. The best
part for the kids was getting to see the reporter, Heather,
and the cameraman, Steve, who came to the house last
week.  They were both very nice to the girls, and the girls
are huge fans of them.  In fact, when Ambrosia was
having a fit  "Hi Heather!  Hi Heather!"-ing, Heather at the
telethon...she was greeted with a warm smile and a giant
hug.  She was very excited to tell Heather, "Did you know
you were on TV?"  Heather was very gracious and said,
"Yes, and you're going to be soon too!"  She treated the
girls like gold.

I got to meet one of the founders of Circle of Friends, and
to hear the story of how it began.  This wonderful charity
actually began around a dinner table of a few friends.  
Through the past few years, it has grown to be a force to
be reckoned with.  They may top a million dollars in
donations to pediatric cancer research this year - right
here at Children's in Columbus.  I am utterly
astonished...and very hopeful for what Avalon's Army of
Angels will be able to accomplish.  It was inspiring to get to
meet someone who has started such an incredible thing.  

I do have a funny though.  I again met someone who has,
from mutual acquaintences, been a visitor to our website.  
I have to say, its a bit disconcerting when someone knows
us so well.  I forget, that I've shared
everything with you
guys.  Its odd to have someone comment on our lives,
until I remind myself...I'm the big mouth who put it out
there in the first place!  Its a good thing I'm as honest as I
can humanly be.  At least when someone asks about
something, I can easily answer them.  I don't know how
politicians lie...my brain couldn't take it...

The interview itself was short, but fine.  Avalon had found
her second wind, and was in rare form.  The hospital had
two couches for the families to sit on, and a coffee table
full of stuffies to amuse rambunctious toddlers.  Oh, it did
that, alright.  As Heather tried to do the intro to a video
clip (the interview from last week), Avalon shoved an
Eyeore ear up her nose.  Not to mention the game of
piling all the stuffies on and off the of couch next to
Heather during the interview.  And did I mention the
monitor?  To try to keep Avalon interested, Heather
showed Avalon herself and sissies on the monitor as the
taped piece played.  The problem is, Avalon now knew
where the monitor was.  During the interview, she kept
yelling, "Mommy!  Daddy!" and pointing at the monitors,
that is - between rounds of piling stuffies on Heather.  She
definitely turned "the cute" on high Saturday night.  

As for myself, darn it!  Yes, I'm a giant wimp...and I
again.  If I'm going to speak publicly about this, I've
got to get better at it!  If I was one of those pretty criers...it
wouldn't be so bad.  Nooooo...I have to be a blotchy
faced, runny nose sap.  Worst part is, I apparantly have
no control over it.  I think I'm just fine, then wham!, the
waterworks start.  Ack, its embarassing.  The funny thing
is, I don't cry over the sad.  I cry whenever I try to talk
about how kind people at Children's have been to us.  Or I
cry when I talk about kind acts from the community toward
cancer kids.  Basically, tragedy - I can deal with.  
Kindness makes me a basket case.  Go figure.  

After the interview we got to see Nichole from Circle of
Friends.  It was nice to introduce Nick and the girls to her.  
I've spent so much time talking about her, and to her, that
it was fun to finally match faces with names for everyone.  
Avalon liked her immediately.  Nichole carried Avalon into
the studio to meet some of the volunteers for the telethon.
 It was wonderful to have an opportunity to say "Thank
you" to several of them.  I don't think people realize how
much we appreciate them raising money for the hospital.  
That building and the people and technology contained
within it, have handed out daughter back to us.  No
amount of "Thank Yous" will ever be enough for people
who participate in supporting it.  I supposed I'm willing to
cry on 20 television shows if it helps the hospital...

As I said before, the weekend wrapped up with a birthday
party for Ambrosia.  Grammo, Pappo, Aunt Nettie, Uncle
Darby, Papa Joe, Papa Steve, Marnita, Kevin, and
Jeannie (Travis was studying for a final) joined us for lots
of food, lots of sweat (we don't have air conditioning), and
lots of laughter.  We had a riotously good time, and
Ambrosia played the part of "Queen for a Day".  It was
wonderful to see her get to be the ultimate center of
attention for a change.  She is the most easy going, giving
child.  She truly deserved a day of complete indulgence.  
She giggled, grinned, ate lots of cake, and strutted her
stuff in her new dress-up clothes.  She enjoyed the
spotlight with every ounce of her little four year old body.  
It was pure joy watching her revel in it all. (pictures are on
the website along with this email)

Basically, it was one crazy, over-booked weekend.  A
quiet week of house cleaning and weeding flower beds
sounds blissful.  Yeah, I need to get out more...

Love to ALL of you!!!
Alicia, Nick, Aurora, Ambrosia, and
These 3 pics were from her real
birthday morning.   Party pics follow.
Hee hee hee, I love it!
Look at the princess dresses!!
Prettiest princesses, ever.
Cinderella with her cake.
Pretty in pink and playing with
a new Polly Pocket
Our Journey:
Avalon's Army of Angels
You have to love a kid who
hugs a clock...