Saturday, December 18, 2010

Merry Christmas 2010 from Daryl & Carol!

The 2010 Nativity Scene is up.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Cancer Update

I went to see the cancer doc this week and discussed the results of a blood sample taken just prior to Thanksgiving. Although the cancer is still slowly increasing (up 50% from sample taken in September), it is still not bad enough to resume chemotherapy. I will go in for another check on the status and evaluation of options in early February. As always, thanks to all for love, care, prayers and concern. It will be good to have more time off the chemo and allow for further recovery.

Precious Moments

Trust me, I'm really not a Precious Moments kind of a guy, but if you're ever on I-44 near Carthage, MO, you really should take about 45 minutes or an hour and get off the beaten track and go see their place there. The artist built a chapel on his property with scenes from the Old Testament on one side, and scenes from the New Testament on the other. Here's a few of our favorite pictures from the same, when we stopped on our way home from Illinois after Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving in Illinois

We got to go to Illinois for Thanksgiving to see our kids and grand kids there.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Hall Johnson Farm 10/30/10

Just before Halloween, Carol and I got to take the two local grand girls to Hall Johnson Farm in Colleyville. The bottom photo is a video.

Just before Halloween, Carol and I got to take the two local grand girls to the Hall Johnson Farm nearby.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

My Teachers

While attending my class's 40th high school reunion last weekend, I was blessed to see some of our former faculty. It it good to know that as we near middle age, our class still has its faculties. Anyway, it caused my to remember the teachers who stand out as being the most influential in training me, or making me the person I am today. They include:

Cathy Street, 11th grade English. She was not much older than we were, but taught us how to really write and use the English language. She was also known, on occasion, to stop in her yellow VW bug and give a ride to a student walking to school on a cold winter morning.

Lt. Col. Henry B. Edwards, US Army Retired, Military Science. What he taught (and exemplified) in his Principle of Leadership course, I have used all my life.

Ruth A. Mills, 10th grade geometery. A real life changer in my life. Three weeks into the class, I was flunking miserably. As she handed me back my weekly test, one that had a LOW "F" for its grade, she looked me fiercely in the eye and said, "Now you can do better than that!" I believed Mrs. Mills to be smart and honest, so I went home and did not get up from my desk until I had mastered the fundamentals of the material to that date. The next week, I made a 100 on the weekly test, and never made below a 96 on any weekly test or exam in that class for the rest of the year. Later, Mrs. Mills wrote for me a nice recommendation that helped me get a scholarship to college to study engineering, and just a whole lot of how I've made my living for 36 years has been based on geometry I learned from Mrs. Mills.

Pictured below at the reunion are me and my two favorite science teachers from high school, or anywhere else for that matter. They were the ones who started me in a career of science. The lady on the left is Sandy Buhler, who taught me 11th grade chemistry (and yes, she really is old enough to have been my high school chemistry teacher). What she taught in how to analytically solve a problem, I have used throughout college and throughout my career. She was also a good and understanding friend.

The teacher on the right is Edna Hatcher, 10th grade biology, and the best teacher of all time. Teen age years are tough enough without having to endure the social stresses of high school. Miss Hatcher's class was always a place of refuge in the midst of the school day. As well as being an excellent conveyor of the scientific principles of life, which I loved learning, she refused to tolerate any of the high school caste system in her classroom. She treated all students the same, regardless of their social standing, and insisted that we do the same. Guess what - we did, and it made for a very nice class. Words fail to express the Christian influence she was on me at a turbulent time in my life. I'm glad I got to tell her so last weekend.

I am probably forgetting or failing to mention other great teachers in my life. Whoever they are, they are in many ways responsible (in the good sense) for the person I am today. My thanks to them all.

A Reunion With Class

October 8 & 9, Spartans from across the country and around the globe convened in Memphis, Tennessee, to celebrate the fact that we graduated together 40 years ago, and are still around to talk about it and remember it today. About 150 alumni and spouses gathered at a classmate's house on Friday evening, and then about 250 of the same got together for the big shindig on Saturday evening.

Saturday evening's party was on the 33rd floor of a tower near our alma mater and it was really nice. It started with a buffet dinner and a short program, then the alumni gathered at one side of the room for the group photo below. While assembling for the photo, we sang the school fight song with much gusto (remembering to stomp the right foot on the rah! rah! rah! part). There were about 150 alumi in the photo below, so don't bother trying to find anyone you know.

I guess this was the only part of the evening when things were still and somewhat quiet, because after that the dancing and singing started and went on past midnight. Memphis folks know how to sing, and somewhat how to dance.

Below is a picture of how the main entrance to my alma mater looks today, a sad shell of its former self. I guess looking at it must be like looking at the ruins of an ancient civilization. When we attended there, WSHS was the city powerhouse in terms of academics, football, and basketball. Today, I see from their website that their record is 2-5 to this point in the season. I hope their academics are still strong.

Anyway, it was a lot of fun, and I got to reconnect and have some meaningful conversations with a lot of folks from long ago who are still really neat people today. I only regret it will be 5 or 10 years before, Lord willing, I get to see this group of people again.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

A Study in Orange and White

We had the two local grand girls for a while today. Go Vols!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Just an update on me

Because many of you faithfully ask about how I am doing, and some make me promise to tell when I get an update, here is the latest news on me and the cancer. Blood work at the end of August showed a slight increase in the cancer, but blood work at the end of September showed no additional increase. To quantify this, the M-spike (measure of the cancer) is now 0.4, compared to an all-time low of 0.2 just before I discontinued chemotherapy 5 months ago (it stayed at 0.3 for several months over the summer), and an all-time high of 4.0 at diagnosis 3 years ago. Today, the doc and I discussed all of the same options, and the same pros and cons of each option, as before, and came to the same conclusion as before - we will not restart chemotherapy at this time, but will continue to closely monitor the situation to see if the cancer increases.
I am still recovering from the time on chemo (fatigue, nueropathy), and it is taking longer than I expected. It is not good that the nueropathy is still around, but I am hoping it will eventually go away. Thanks again for love, support, and prayers.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Mr. & Mrs. Ben Thompson

One of my favorite commercials show a dad talking to a little girl (maybe 6) seated at the wheel of an automobile, giving her instructions about driving - don't go too fast, don't go onto the Interstate the first time out, etc. Then the camera changes and you see the girl is really a grown-up teenager, but he just sees her as his little girl.

I can remember coming home from work years ago, often after a bad day. There would be a figurative dark cloud over my head, and I would be mumbling as I walked up the walk, muttering thoughts about a crummy job, crummy office, crummy paycheck, pointy-haired boss, lousy automobile. Then a little blond-haired girl would come bounding out the front door, yelling "Daddy!" and the dark cloud would disappear and sunshine would shine through.

Every daddy wants his little girl to grow up to be happy, fall in love with a godly young man who will love her back, lead her in paths of righteousness, protect her and provide for her. At least that's what he thinks. But there is also that part of him that wants to put the brick on her head at age 8 and keep her little forever.

Today, my greatest hopes and inner fears were both realized in the same event as Emily married her Prince Charming Ben. They will be great together, and her mother and I are thrilled. For lots more neat photos, see my albums on facebook.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Just Some Good Pics

Here are a few good pictures of SOME of the people I really like a lot, from an otherwise sad occasion, when we went to east Tennessee last weekend for the funeral of my father-in-law Walter Young. Most of them are from the hotel late Friday evening, with the grandchildren, one is with Carol and her friend Kathy after the funeral, and one is of the rainy graveside gathering at the cemetery. Photos courtesy of our good friends the Hensleys.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A Good & Godly Man

Sometime Monday night/early Tuesday morning, my father-in-law, Walter "Dub" Young, passed away and went to be in the arms of the Lord he adored. He was a good and godly man, as evidenced in one aspect by the extremely well-worn and well-applied Bible in the photo.

Although he was old in not in good health, the timing of his death was not expected. We had moved him into a local nursing home just 3 weeks ago (see a few posts down). Carol and I had visited with him on Sunday afternoon and he seemed to be doing okay. He introduced himself to another resident as, "I'm a Tennessee man,...and I Love the Lord!"

We were looking forward to having some times with him for just a little longer, and will miss him. Here's what I guess are the last photos of him from Sunday afternoon.

My Update

I got back the results of a blood sample taken last week, and there continues to be no change in cancer levels for the past 3 months since I discontinured chemotherapy. I am very thankful for this. This means no chemotherapy for at least one or two more months. I'm thankful for that, too. And thanks to you for caring and praying.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Emily & Ben's Adventure in Moving

Today, Emily and Ben (aka Ben and Emily) are moving things into their future new apartment. Ben will move in along with the furniture today; Emily moves in after their wedding in a few weeks. It has been real nice to have Ben stay in one of the many empty rooms at our house since graduating and starting a new job a few weeks ago, while Emily has continued to share an apartment in Arlington with another young lady from our church. It has given us a chance to get to know better this excellent young man who is marrying our daughter. We will miss having Ben around, but are excited for this beginning new chapter in their lives.

Hmmm - I wonder if the caption to the above photo should be "Emmovable" ?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Sparkling Personalities

Four girls - we could have had seven if only we had thought sooner! This was taken right after Julia and the other two local girls left.

Welcome to Texas

This afternoon, all of us in Dub's local family got together at the nursing home to throw him a "Welcome to Texas" party. We celebrated by enjoying one of the finest benefits of residing in the Lone Star State - eating Blue Bell Ice Cream.