The test was negative for swine flu for Brinley. We were all surprised with that because we were all pretty sure it was. Docs and nurses too.

They want to keep her on the tamiflu, and they decided instead of making me go back up to the hospital, they would just send out our home health nurse to draw another culture, check counts, and administer a dose of antibiotic. Brinley is pretty miserable, the minute the tylenol wears off, she starts burning up again and just cries.

So we don't know anything, really. I worry if it's swine flu, I worry if it's not. This can be one big fat worryfest sometimes. We are just trying to keep everything sanitized and hands washed. Seems impossible sometimes, but we do our best. Jade seems a bit better today.

Just wanted to petition a few prayers out there. Jade came home yesterday and was suddenly very sick with flu symptoms. It came on so fast. Brinley woke up this morning with a fever, up to 102, and so off to Primary hospital we went. She got the flu test and we will find out tomorrow. In the meantime, they gave her the IV chemo that was supposed to be Thursday so we don't have to go back. All other chemo is on hold until her fever is gone. We are not starting steroids yet until she is better. Thankfully, her counts are good, so we are not in-patient. They are pretty sure it is H1N1, so she is on the Tamiflu (holy $$$!). Our oncologist was nice enough to write a prescription for Jade too so I didn't have to take her in. I am trying not to worry, but how could I not? With Brinley in the "high risk" category, well, you know. And poor Jade is so sick.

Oh, how sweet is this - the tamiflu apparently is not very good. So of course, Brinley sucked it down with a sour look on her face, but did it quickly. Jade is not quite so used to downing yucky medicine, and so we were having a very hard time, lots of tears. Brinley came up to me with her big brown eyes and said "I'll take it for her." Brinley was willing to take the yucky medicine for her sister. I think that is the sweetest thing ever.

Anyhow, I'll update tomorrow, but please give my girls a few prayers. And pray that the rest of us will stay healthy, especially Mylee. Thanks!

Our Alex's Lemonade Stand was a huge success! Not only was it a success, it was an incredible experience for all of us. We each came home with some amazing stories and I can't wait to do it again next year! Our goal was to raise $500, and we ended up raising $1199.64! In just four hours, and with some online donations, we raised $1199.64!!! I couldn't believe it. It was such an empowering feeling, when I have had so many feelings of helplessness in all of this. I felt like we were truly fighting back, and it felt good.

I'd just like to share some of our experiences, so this post might be a bit long. I'll start with some pictures.

Brinley and Aunt Nancy at our stand. It started out chilly, but the day turned out to be absolutely beautiful, after a very cold week.

Our stand looked so great, thanks Danielle for doing the decorations!

We were able to set up at the upstairs entrance. Taylor and my sisters ran that stand. We had a lot of kids helping and they were all wonderful lemonade servers! A picture of all the kids would have been nice, I dropped the ball on that one.

We had a TON of traffic, it was a busy store. The store director was absolutely wonderful to us and everything just went perfectly.

I wasn't able to get everyone who helped in one picture, I regret not being able to do that, because we had so many wonderful people there helping us. I didn't ask one of them to help. They all approached me to help. We had more requests to help than we needed, I guess we'll have to go bigger next year! Thanks to everyone who participated, you are truly amazing, caring people.

Our little family!

Okay, are you ready for this? One of the highlights of the stand was being able to meet two people who actually DO the research for pediatric cancer! They have received grants from Alex's Lemonade Stand, and this doctor actually KNEW Alex! He used to live in Pennsylvania and was one of her doctors. He heard we were there and came asking to meet Brinley. She was in the bathroom, so he said he would wait. He had come to meet her and take a picture with her. So he waited, and when she came back he stooped down to talk to her. There was this man, this doctor, behind the scenes working every day to find a cure, stooped down face to face with one of the children he is fighting to save. Talk about a moment. What I would give for a picture of that moment. You could see without a doubt in the way he talked to my Brinley that it was more than a job for him. I wish I had taken a picture of the other lovely person who is doing research, who had the same passion in her eyes. I just didn't think of it in time. Heck, I wish I could have taken a picture of every single person who donated so you could see all of their faces. But here is a picture of Dr. Meeker with Brinley.

I want to share something I have been feeling, but I do have a purpose behind sharing this, so hang in there til the end please! While we were preparing this stand, several of us had talked about how disappointed we were. It seemed like people just didn't care. I guarantee you that many of the fliers we handed out went straight to the trash. Many of the businesses we asked for supply donations so we didn't have to pay for it ourselves said no. Some people, even friends of all of us involved, gave a polite smile when they were told about it and never thought about it again. I must admit I went into this with some disappointment in my heart.

Here's the good part. Now that the stand is over and after what I witnessed, I have a whole new outlook. It hasn't changed that some people just don't care. I get that. But some people do. I mean, really, truly DO care. And I got to meet them. If I could have, I would have swooped each one of them up, spun them around, and squished them until they begged me to let go. There's a picture for ya.

For example, I called Officemax to ask for copy donations, expecting the same turndown that I got from Office Depot, but instead the store manager said yes without batting an eyelash. He donated $110 in copies for our cause.

I sent in a request to the regional manager of Walgreens to donate some pictures for the stand, and he approved it the same day, his secretary telling me she wishes there was more they could do. I was able to print all the photos I needed.

The people involved with the stand and their family members donated money, paper products, and decoration supplies. The store director of Smith's Marketplace went above and beyond to help us. There was an outpouring of people at the stand who cared. Some of our friends and family drove anywhere from 30-90 minutes to buy a cup of lemonade. We met a childhood cancer survivor, people with someone in the family with childhood cancer, adult cancer survivors, doctors, nurses, and people who just plain old care about other people. All of us caring about the same cause. All of us working together to get cancer out of our lives. My point is that PEOPLE CARE! That was all I needed to see, that people care what my daughter is going through. People care about what other children are going through, in so many cases so much worse than what Brinley has experienced.

One of my favorite stories was at the stand upstairs. A man was lingering in the background for quite a while. Finally he said he was going out to his car to get his checkbook. He came back in and folded a check up to put in the donation bucket. He told my sister, Melanie, "it isn't much, but they have been sending me home from work every day, so I just don't have much to give." His check was for $1. He walked out to his car to get his checkbook so he could write a check for $1. I wonder what that dollar meant to him. I imagine it was a big sacrifice for him, enough for him to really contemplate donating it or not. I can tell you it meant the world to all of us involved. Incredible.

I absolutely cannot WAIT until next year when we can do it again. I just want to thank everyone who donated and helped. You mean the world to us, I would love to name you one by one but there are too many of you. You know who you are. I love you all and if my heart could explode from gratitude and love for you it would.