December 18, 2001
Rufus arrives in Lakeland, Florida. We are between Tampa and Orlando on the map! David (11, dx'd Friday, October 13, 2000), Matthew (7), and John (2) are very excited about our little visitor. Tonight we have a Cub Scout Pack Meeting so we have a very busy afternoon ahead of us. Rufus helped David do his homework (Rufus is very good in math). David checked Rufus' sugar before dinner and it was 96, Great job Rufus!). Both David and Rufus bolus before eating pizza, then we were off to scouts! Since it was our December meeting, we invited Santa Claus to come. Even though he is very busy this time of hear, he came! We introduced Rufus to him and he said he had been watching Rufus in his travels to see if he was being a good little bear. We took a picture of Rufus and Santa so Rufus will remember that Santa is always watching. Rufus was so tired from traveling and the excitement that he fell asleep in the car on the way home. Sssshhhhh. Pleasant dreams, Rufus.
December 19, 2001
David and Rufus checked their blood this morning. Both were in good numbers, which always starts the day off right. David helps Rufus figure out the carbohydrate count on the pancakes and they bolus accordingly. While David and Matthew are at school, Mom, Mim (the boys' Grandmother), John, and Rufus go to the mall shopping. John fell asleep holding Rufus in his stroller, so Rufus decides to take a nap, too. When we pick David and Matthew up at school, David decides to check Rufus with his FreeStyle Glucose Meter. Rufus really likes the meter because you can stick your arm instead of your fingers. He said he didn't even feel it. David likes to use it better as well. Rufus was low (60), so he got 4 glucose tablets. We re-checked him in 30 minutes, and he is up to 102. This makes all of us happy. David decides that Rufus needs to play his keyboard, so he moves up the chair for Rufus. Our two Rufus' joined in making it a trio and they played wonderfully.
December 20, 2001
Today, Rufus is going to school to visit David's class. He is in the 5th grade at St. Anthony's Catholic School. One of his teachers, Mrs. Obermeyers, said she would like for Rufus to come visit. We went to school and took Rufus' Box with us. Everyone loved looking at all the things Rufus brought to share. The newspaper from Germany was a hit, as well as his clogs. There were lots of questions and a discussion about the fact that some schools had a lot more subjects than we did. We are only required to take English and the kids thought it would be fun to learn another language.
December 21, 2001
Today, Rufus stayed home while we went to school for the Christmas parties. There were lots of goodies and we made sure to have a carbohydrate count for most of them. School was only until 11:30 a.m., so it was a very short day. We came home and had grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup for lunch. Rufus like the sandwich, but didn't care much for the soup. The rest of the day was pretty much watching tv and playing Nintendo 64 games.
December 22, 2001
We got up early this morning to head to Tampa to Busch Garderns. All of us go (except Dad) as well as Aunt Carolyn (mom's twin sister), Christopher and Andrew, our cousins) and Robin (Andrew's girlfriend). We go to Bush Gardens often and have passes, so it was easy to get in and hit the rides. The first one was Montu, a really great roller coaster. Rufus and Matthew were too short to ride, but they let us take a picture anyway. Rufus liked the animals there and wanted to know if any of them were diabetic. We told him we didn't think so. He watched as all the kids rode the different rides. We could only stay for three hours because we had to get back home to go to a birthday party for Clare (another cousin). On the way home from Tampa, we have lunch at McDonald's. We know the carbohydrate counts for the food there, so it makes eating there easy. Both David and Rufus test, then bolus before eating. We stop by Plant City at Carolyn's house before going home. Then rush home to be on time to the party. Clare is turning 4, and she is having a party. David and Matthew take Rufus along so he can have fun, too. He wears the tie he has in his box and looks so handsome in it. We are not sure about the cake, but David has a small piece anyway. He promises to check his blood and bolus in a couple of hours if he needs to. At dinner time, everyone is home and we have spaghetti with meat sauce and dinner rolls. Rufus especially liked the rolls and ate an extra one to be sure and get his fill. He then had to bolus for his extra food! David, Matthew, and Rufus spent the night at Mim's house. It is great having her live only two houses down. She has enjoyed having Rufus around and help plan his escapades.
December 23, 2001
Today is a day of rest and we all need it after all the excitement of the past few days. We go to Mass at 12:00 p.m. and then come home to watch more tv and play Nintendo!
December 24, 2001
It's Christmas Eve, and everyone is excited. We have a busy day planned with visiting the family and exchanging presents. We try to do all of our visiting on Christmas Eve Day, that way we can spend Christmas at home. We take some cakes over to Aunt Carolyn's house, and we visit a few other relatives while there. We go to Mass at 4:00 p.m., and it is very nice. Rufus really liked all the Christmas music and candles. It is getting cooler outside and we have chili for dinner. Both Rufus and David test. Rufus' numbers are great, but David's numbers are a bit high (we think due to all the excitement), so we bolus extra for the high numbers. We are glad to have the pump at times like this. It makes life so much easier! After dinner, we go around and look at Christmas lights. Rufus wanted to see some up close, so we stopped and took his picture in front of some. The lights were very pretty this year, but it was night and a bit chilly, so we had to put jackets on. Rufus already has a fur coat, so we didn't worry about him. Tonight, we open presents at Mim's house. She has a new tree this year, and we call it the Dr. Seuss tree. It is really funny to look at, but easy to put up and take down. David, Matthew, John, and Rufus are excited about Christmas. They all have some hot cocoa before bed and go to sleep. It will be an early day tomorrow!
December 25, 2001
Everyone is up by 7:00 a.m., and ready to open presents! Well, they were really up before that, but Mom and Dad said not to wake them until 7:00. Everyone is looking for presents with names on them, and John (2) is just wanting to open them all! David and Matthew both received skateboards, so Rufus said he will show them how to ride it if they want him to. There is even a present for Rufus under the tree. He opens it and it is a stuffed Clifford, so he won't be traveling alone anymore. Rufus watches while everyone opens their gifts. It is a fun morning with a lot of excitement. Then it is off to have breakfast. Mom has made pancakes and bacon for breakfast. Testing is done and carbs are counted so everyone can have breakfast! After breakfast, it is outside to watch the boys ride their new boards. We made a lot of changes when David was diagnosed, but we are still as active as ever. Most of the day is spent outside. The weather is clear and cool, but this is sunny Florida, so it isn't cold and it is perfect weather to play in. Mom calls everyone in at dinner time. Christmas dinner is a big meal and has a lot of carbohydrates, but everything is added up and nothing is denied. Last Christmas, we had to stay around 60 carbohydrates because David was still on shots, but this year he is on a pump and all we have to do is count up the carbs and bolus for them. David is very happy because he can have homemade pumpkin pie, with whipped cream! Rufus skipped the pie and just ate the whipped cream. Silly Rufus.
December 26, 2001
Today, David and Matthew's SugarGram (Mom's Mother) is coming over. She is bringing a special package. David and Matthew saved all of their Christmas money and wanted to get a Nintendo Game Cube with it. So SugarGram went and picked it up for them on the way over as well as a game. She met Rufus and thought all of his treasures were wonderful. She prays daily for all the children with diabetes, and knows there will be a cure one day soon. Now she has added Rufus and his friends to her prayer list. David, Matthew and Rufus disappear into David's room with the Game Cube not to be heard from for the rest of the day.
December 27, 2001
We have a meeting today with some other children with diabetes at a new support group. It is just for fun and the moms can talk about challenges in living with diabetes. Besides David, there are Erica (8, dx'd 9/1/99) and Jordan (10, dx'd 3/26/01). Along with Hunter, Madison, Marissa, Austin, Matthew, and John, none of whom have diabetes. We order pizza, and everyone enjoys eating it and then playing outside. We spend three hours there playing and it is fun. We are planning to get together again soon.
December 28, 2001
Today we have an appointment for Rufus to see David's endocrinologist. Dr. Terry DeClue is from St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa, but he comes to Lakeland every other Friday to take care of his patients over here. He is a very special doctor and has helped us get David under control. David says he is cool and he likes the way Dr. DeClue talks to him about his diabetes and not to Mom and Dad. He has a very special nurse, too. Her name is Becky Gordon. She is a Diabetes Educator and has helped us a lot since the diagnosis. Dr. DeClue checks Rufus out and says he is in great shape! His Hemoglobin A1c is 6.3, and he is very proud of Rufus for taking such good care of his diabetes. We tell Dr. DeClue where you can go to read about all the Rufus and Ruby travels.
December 31, 2001
Since today is the last day of the year 2001, we are staying up late. David, Matthew, and Rufus are spending the night at Mim's house. This has gotten to be a tradition, and Rufus is happy to be included. They all stay up watching the ball fall in New York Times Square on tv, well, all but Matthew. He says he was just resting his eyes, but Rufus thinks he might have fallen asleep. David's numbers have been up all evening, so a few minutes after midnight, Dad calls down to have David check his glucose level. It is high, so Mom goes down to change the infusion set. It only takes a few minutes, and it gives Mom the chance to look up at Jupiter in the night sky while walking home. We wouldn't want to start 2002 with any problems now, would we!
January 1, 2002
Everyone is tired today, including Rufus. Mom gets up and takes down the Christmas tree and decorations. David, Matthew and Rufus are playing Nintendo all morning. David teaches Rufus how to play and he likes it. We are going to send Rufus along to the LaRocca Family in Plantation soon and hate to have to say good-bye to our little friend. We know he will have many more adventures and we will be watching the Children with Diabetes website for all of his travels. God Bless you, Rufus, and all the children whose hearts you touch.