The Wood Family, New Zealand
September 5, 2001 Whakatane, New Zealand
After waiting anxiously for ages, Rufus has arrived up to the North Island in the middle of a huge rainstorm. Great excitement! He came in time for Alex to have her soccer photos taken.
September 6 2001
Rufus went to school to meet all Alex's classmates and everyone wanted to hold him. The teacher read the storybook of Rufus the Bear. After school, he went down to the Heads to have photos taken, make sandcastles, explore the rock pools and watch the white baiters trying to catch the little white fish for a feed. We bought him a kiwi badge to wear on his braces.
September 8 2001
Another busy day at school yesterday meeting Natasha, a 6-year-old diabetic at Alex's school. Rufus also went to school assembly and told the whole school about his world travels. Alex had a hypo last night, another before breakfast and then sank to 2.2 while playing soccer with her brother on the front lawn-Rufus forgot to remind her to have morning tea! She then shot up to 18 after a glucose and biscuits-it's pretty tricky when your numbers are all over the place. Alex was diagnosed in October last year so must be zooming out of her honeymoon period. Having Rufus to hug and share all these ups and downs with is a real blessing. And now we are in Te Kuiti in the middle of the North Island for a soccer tournament for the best 8 year olds around. Rufus has seen more cows and rolling green hills than maybe ever before.
September 9 2001
A gorgeous Spring morning with the trees in blossom looking beautiful. Alex's team did very well with 3 wins and a draw but she was a tired soccer player today after so many hypos. Rufus was the team mascot and supported her by sitting near the goal while she kept those opponents' balls out.
September 10 2001
Today, Rufus had a photo shoot with the local paper, went to the hospital to meet Alex's paediatrician, diabetic nurse and the insulin rep and then went home for a night to stay with Jeremy Clark. He is nearly 13 and has had diabetes since he was 2. Rufus looked at Jeremy's science project which is about a guide that helps him rotate his injection sites. This has helped Jeremy not only with his diabetes but it has also won him some awards in the school's science fair.
Tuesday 11 September 2001
Jeremy's Mum Sue writes, "I think Rufus is getting a bit confused with the different measurements of blood sugars. In the USA where they measure in mg/dl 72 and below is getting low while here in NZ, the same measurement is 4.0mmol/l. When Jeremy woke up this morning, he was 2.2  so he wasn't feeling too flash. Thank you Alex and the rest of the Wood family for sharing Rufus with us."
Rufus came to Alex's music lesson after school-it's called Music For Young Children and is a Canadian system of learning. He was most impressed at the singing, rhythm, instrumentals and keyboarding.
Wednesday 12 September 2001
Woke this morning to learn about the dreadful attacks in America. We all sat dumbfounded and watched as the World Trade Centre crumbled. Everyone here is very sad and Rufus had lots of hugs from the kids at school on his last day there. I suspect the teacher may be pleased when things get back to normal!
Rufus had a clean up for his big trip tomorrow to Canada. We have all loved having him and it's made Alex feel very special-in a positive way. Good travelling Rufus and haere ra from Alex , Jesse, Christine and Bryan Wood.
Editor's Note: Rufus was caught in the mail for a long time between New Zealand and Canada. Sorry for the delay!
Rufus and Ruby, the bears with diabetes, is the creation of Carol Cramer, who owns the copyright to Rufus and Ruby. The graphics of Rufus are from Rufus Come Home, written by Kim Gosselin and illustrated by Terry Ravenelli, and are used by permission of the author.
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Last Updated: Friday December 20, 2002 09:38:16
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