Thursday, September 11, 2008

Raccoon Holler Re-visited

Labor Day weekend is quickly approaching and we wanted to do one last trip out of town in the camper before the season comes to an end. We decide to head back up to Raccoon Holler to not only enjoy the beautiful scenery, but to actually have fun this time.

Right before this trip, I had been on a low iodine diet for 3 weeks in preparation for my 1 year thyroid cancer scan. The diet was necessary to starve my body of iodine so that when I take a low dose radioactive iodine pill, any remaining thyroid cancer cells will glow so they know if it has come back. I luckily only have to do this 1 more year. The diet is basically fruits and vegetables. No dairy, eggs, fish, or iodized salt or anything with those ingredients. I also didn't have to go off my medicine and feel horrible now that the FDA approved a new shot to eliminate my medicine in order to do the scan. I did the scan on Friday before Labor Day and left that afternoon. Results weren't given until the next Thursday and I'm happy to say I'm cancer free after 1 year. But that afternoon I indulged in just about everything I was craving for the past 3 weeks and it felt so good. Egg and cheese bagel, pizza, bar-b-que, m&ms, cookies, and finally cream back in my coffee.

Friday night we get up there and get settled, chat a little bit with Daddy D and his family who are also back up for the weekend and have a fairly quiet evening. Daddy D's daughter had just gotten a new puppy which was the highlight of the weekend. Bryce loves and I mean loves (will not separate) from little dogs. Saturday we wake up to beautiful, cooler weather and decide to just hang out at the park at the campground and have an easy day. The kids had a blast of course and they love Daddy D's daughter and her friend who are 12, to play with. We liked them too because they were a huge help.

Saturday afternoon comes and the campground puts together some fun activities for kids so while Stacy and Dave were napping I took Bryce down to check it out. He was hesitant, but that changed quickly. He got to create a paper plate smiley face in which he placed 2nd (out of 20) with a little help from mom of course. Then he played a game where you hold a plate on your head and one on your lap that has cotton balls and try to use a spoon to scoop the cotton balls on the plate on top of your head in the quickest time. This was a little challenging for him. But then came face painting and Bingo. He did win one game of bingo and the prize was an ice cream treat from the store. He was so giddy by this point. Last game was a water balloon toss back and forth between us. We were 4th from last to get out, so not too shabby. He was thrilled when getting me wet and how the afternoon ended.

Daddy D has several seasonal site friends who were also there for the weekend and we have obviously grown fond of them as well. Great group of folks to hang out with. We all collaborate for dinner, each bringing a different dish. Them more than us as we're learning, but that night was steak and potatoes. We decided for Sunday breakfast to head to the Daniel Boone Inn - which serves a family style breakfast, no menus, they just keep bringing the food.

I got to eat my biscuits and gravy and delicious cooked cinnamon apples. Everyone goes their own way after breakfast while our family heads up to Blowing Rock to enjoy the beautiful park. After about an hour there Dave and I sit down on the bench not feeling so hot. Dave actually started feeling kind of bad the night before and my stomach had been upset most of the week before. So we pack up and head back to the campground just in time for us both to get the Stomach Flu. I thank God we were not in tents! Dave quickly went off to sleep while I kept an eye on Bryce. Then we get a knock on the door and its our good friend from Raleigh who was also up for the weekend at his in-laws along with some other folks from our church who were doing a big ride on the Parkway. Dave was able to muster up the strength to say hello but that was about it. The afternoon got worse but then better for Dave and then got much worse for me. Daddy D's daughter and friend were so great and took the kids off our hands for a little bit while we rested. Talk about a huge help. We were able to sit outside and join folks for conversation at dinner and Daddy D's wife even had Dave's must have when he's sick - chicken noodle soup. I tried a few bites of green beans, but nothing tasted good. By the time everyone finished dinner and I was walking the kids back to the camper to put them to bed, I turned the corner and threw up just outside the camper. Unfortunately the kids had to witness this and all Bryce could think of to say was, "Mommy your beautiful." I had to laugh and throw up at the same time. I think I will always remember that though.

So once again Raccoon Holler has not been the greatest of places for us at this point and Daddy D and his family would probably like us to be a little more fun instead of needy the next time we join them. I also forgot my camera battery which was charging at home so no pictures either. Not that there was a lot to take anyway. Maybe next time.