Wednesday, December 10, 2014

$50 Origami Owl Giveaway to Bless Anna!

You can win $50 worth of Origami Owl jewelry just in time to give it for Christmas! (Or keep it as your gift to yourself.)

Whether you're a faithful lover of Origami Owl, or still haven't even heard of's a chance to win $50 worth before Christmas, and help Anna as she goes through cancer treatment and prepares for a bone marrow transplant. 

Anna's (short version) story: Anna is a special needs child born
with MeCP2 duplication syndrome. When she was 9, she was also diagnosed with Anaplastic large cell lymphoma. After a year of treatment she relapsed immediately, and the doctors decided she needed a bone marrow transplant. When she started her transplant, she contracted RSV, and had to stop the transplant process. While waiting for the RSV to clear, she relapsed again. She is now undergoing cancer treatment for the third time and hoping for a life saving bone marrow transplant soon. In the meantime, she and I are stuck away from home, away from family, and bouncing around from the hospital to nearby places to stay. To find out more about Anna and her cancer journey you can follow her facebook page: All For Anna.


Online raffles are illegal. This is not a raffle. This giveaway helps draw people to the blog post so they can learn about Anna's situation and decide whether or not they can help. We're telling you about Anna and if you are able to and would like to donate any amount from $1 on up to help her out it'd be greatly appreciated. Whether its for food, for travel, for something to make her smile, for a new app on her iPad, or to help pay a bill for the family we need help at this time. If you are not able to donate or just simply don't want to, you can still enter this giveaway. Donating is not an entry option. The only options for entry are on the rafflecopter form at the end of this post. If you would like to donate to help Anna, please use the paypal button below, and enter any amount. If you can't...please go ahead and still enter the giveaway. Good luck!

{The Giveaway}
I wish I could offer this giveaway worldwide, but Origami Owl only ships to the USA. So, only USA residents can enter. The prize is $50 worth of Origami Owl products, plus free shipping (for items in the cart that total $50). The giveaway ends (winner will be chosen) on 12/18 and the order must be in by 12/19 to get it in time for Christmas. (If the winner does not need it by Christmas, the winner is able to take longer to choose.) One winner will get to choose from the entire online catalog. Any amount over $50 must be paid by the winner, PLUS any additional shipping costs that the overage incurs.

Head on over to, and be looking through to see what you could win! If you don't want to take your chances on winning, you could also make a purchase directly from that website, and the proceeds will still go to Anna.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms and Conditions:

  • No purchase is necessary to enter this giveaway.
  • Open to the USA only.
  • Starts December 10, 2014 and ends midnight December 18, 2014
  • Sponsored by donations given to Anna's family for this cause
  • Prize: One winner will receive $50 worth of Origami Owl products from
  •  Odds determined by number of entrants.
  • Winner will be contacted by email to obtain a mailing address for prize delivery. New winner will be chosen if the winner does not respond within three days after two email notifications.
  • Winner will be chosen at random by rafflecopter.
  • Winner will be listed on the rafflecopter widget by 12/18/14.    
List your sweepstakes at:Sweepstakes at

Another #Lymphoma Relapse

I love this smiling photo of my sweet Anna. This is not how she looks today. Today she looks pale, gaunt, weak, and very very sick. Our bone marrow transplant journey has been frustrating and scary. A few days into transplant, we had to stop because Anna contracted RSV, a very dangerous virus for transplant patients. For you or me it would feel like we had a lingering common cold, for them it can be life threatening. So, we stopped the transplant in the nick of time and treated the RSV.

While waiting, Anna's anti-A counts went up. This means she could not go forward with the transplant from the donor because her blood type would not receive the blood type of the donor. She can still use the donor as long as the counts go down again, but now...she relapsed. That is a word no cancer parent wants to hear. This is Anna's second cancer relapse since we first discovered that she had lymphoma in 2013. It's scary, but we feel confident that the antibody will work for her the way it did last time and free her body of this disease once again. It should only take a few weeks, and then we can move forward with the life saving transplant. If her anti-a does not go down, we can switch the the back up donor which is cord blood.

We still have plenty of options, and there's no reason to fret. Other than it's just really really difficult to see her sick and hurting. We're gonna hold tight to our faith and believe for the best. Thanks for reading our update.

If you would like to help our family as we go through this cancer journey, please use the paypal button and enter any amount you like from $1 and up. We sincerely appreciate it. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

24 Days of Javita - Another Weight Loss Test

The most popular post on this blog has been my Javita coffee weight loss test. I've gotten the opportunity to try it again, and see if doing things differently will give me different results.

If you have been wondering about Javita Gourmet Instant Coffee and whether it really works or not, chances are you may have already visited my blog post about it. I tried it and it didn't work for me the way it works for others. ( I lost half a pound the first week and nothing the second week. That's not enough for me to keep buying it.) Many people said "well, you didn't eat right". Granted, I didn't. If I ate everything I was suppose to though, that would be the diet working and not necessarily the coffee. I do realize that what you eat can go hand in hand with the coffee and enhance it; but, to make the coffee worth purchasing it should work regardless of whether I eat perfectly or not. Same goes for the arguments of exercise. 

I also got the comments that I didn't drink enough of the coffee or give it enough time. My test was two weeks even though I only did a step by step blog post about the first week. Recently a very kind Javita distributor wrote to me and asked me if I'd be willing to try the test again if she provided the product for review. (There's my disclosure. All the opinions written here in this post are mine.) I have been saving them up for a couple of weeks because Anna and I are getting ready to go into the hospital for her bone marrow transplant. We will be there anywhere from 4-8 weeks and I figured that would be a good time to give this product another test run.

What we're doing differently

When I originally tried this test, there was only Burn + Control and Energy + Mind. I only drank the Burn + Control once or twice a day. This time, I'm going to drink three cups of the Javita everyday, and each day I'm going to drink a variety of different types of the coffee. They now offer a Lean + Green variety which will be part of it. So, I'm going to start with the Burn + Control, then mid-morning have a Lean + Green, then early afternoon have an Energy + Mind. I'm going to try...and the operative word is take a 20 minute walk around the hospital when Anna is sleeping at night. I'm going to need to get out of the room anyway, and there are stairwells I could take if I want to add to the benefit of it. I'm thinking of taking my weights with me but I'm not sure if that's going to be feasible or not. As far as eating goes...sitting at hospitals with anxiety in my heart is one of the reasons I've gained so much weight since she got cancer. My last Javita test was just before we found out about her cancer and I was what? 168-169 pounds? Well, now I'm 182. There have been, oh...12-14 hospital stays since then and the longest was only a week and half. Now, we're talking about up to 8 weeks. 

I'm going to try to eat off of her tray when she isn't hungry to save money. I'm bringing some snack bars with me (KIND brand so far), and when I have to I will purchase food. I can't tell you that I won't buy the cheesy burgers and comfort food. I'm going to try to make the best choices I can, but those things may end up being part of it. What I will do is not eat the "crappy foods" all in one meal. If I have a burger I'm not gonna have fries with it, etc.

Pre-test thoughts

Honestly I don't know if this is going to work or not. It bugs me that I may have to drink 3 a day for it to really work. The coffee is expensive, and if it works and I can't buy any more I'm going to be bummed. Then again, if it really does work, I'm going to want to find a way to buy it because so many other things haven't worked. I know in a way it's taking the easy way out, but that's kind of the point isn't it? We need something easier to do than completely change our diets and work out all the time. That works...but so many of us can't make ourselves stick to it. People say well, if it isn't hard then there's no glory in making the accomplishment. I have a kid with special needs and cancer...I know a thing or two about things being hard. I need weight loss to be easier if it can be. Sure I can modify my diet some and work out when I can. I'm not cutting those things out of the equation, but relying on those things so strictly is something I'm not sure if I have in me right now. Yet, I can't take care of my daughter if I'm not taken care of so there's the pickle I'm in. 

The other thing that bugs me is that Javita calls a box of product a "month's worth".  It's a 24 pack. Twenty four days is not a month. It's three weeks and three days. It's seven days (a whole week) short of seven months out of the year, six days short of four months of the year, and 4 days short of the shortest month of the year. It feels like false advertising to me and I don't like it. I think they should make a 28-30 count box if they're going to call it a months worth. Exit soap box. 

On the positive side, I'm thankful for the convenience. The go-anywhere-ability of the product makes it easy for me to do this test in a hospital. For this procedure, we have to wipe down everything with Clorox wipes and put them in Ziploc bags to be able to bring them into the hospital room. It was easy to do that with the Javita packets. 

Getting started

When we get settled in the hospital I'll start this test and update this post. If you'd like to keep up with Anna and her progress through this stem cell/bone marrow transplant you can follow her Facebook page. Check back soon for updates! 

Update 12/3/14 So far I haven't been able to do this. I've tried a few times but it may have to wait till we're done with the BMT and home.