Saturday, December 26, 2009

Seriously, Snow Stinks!!!

Here's what I was doing around Christmas time last year....

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Rondi Sings "Baby It's Cold Outside"

I thought this would be the perfect music video to show this time of year. I did alter some of the lyrics, so this would be the PG-13 version. Don't worry, nothing too crazy :) Merry Christmas Eve everyone!!!!

Alright, now go get your shopping done!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Tis the Season (but we can still workout)!!

My posts this Christmas season will probably be a bit different than many of you are used to. Here's the reasons: One, I don't expect many of you, nor want you, to be here on my blog instead of with your family. Two, this time of year is also crazy for me. Three, it will give us all a chance to relax a little more and catch up on previous posts. What I'd like to do is re-post blogs or videos that you all found either interesting or which received a lot of "action". How does that sound?

I do however want to encourage you guys to make sure to stay as active as possible during this time of year. Believe me, I know it's hectic and the weather can stink, but that can't stop us from doing 100 jumping jacks in our living room :) Just because you can't take 30 minutes to walk or run, doesn't mean you can't take 5 minutes to do push-ups. Anytime you increase your heart rate, you're most likely also having to take deeper breaths and probably coughing a bit. Even if you can only squeeze in 5 minutes a day, it's still better than doing jack squat!

Make sure to watch this video if you haven't before, then, let me know what your excuse is!

Alright, let me have em...why can't you commit to at least 5 minutes of real exercise a day for the next 5 days? Actually, tell me why you couldn't commit to 15 :)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

My Top Ten Christmas Movies

One thing you'll notice about my Top Ten Christmas movie list is that I don't really list any of the "classics" except for maybe the National Lampoon's flick and Charlie Brown. You won't see, A Miracle On 34th Street, A Christmas Carol or A Christmas Story, but I have a very good reason: I've never seen them. You'll also notice that many of these aren't really "Christmas movies", but I do promise that Christmas was part of the movie one way or another.

10. The Family Stone- Don't remember a whole lot about this movie other than I thought it was pretty entertaining.

9. Ernest Saves Christmas- One of those goof ball movies I loved when I was younger. Not nearly as good as Ernest Goes to Camp.

8. A Charlie Brown Christmas- Watched it many many many many times around the holiday season...although it seems to be coming on earlier and earlier in the year.

7. National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation- This is one of those movies you could watch everyday from now until the New Year and still get a good laugh from it.

6. Gremlins- I always wanted one of those little furry guys.

5. While You Were Sleeping- One of the best romantic comedies out there; full of cheesy and very predictable scenes.

4. Home Alone- I really shouldn't have to explain this one. I doubt that if you are reading this you'd question why. And if you are, please go rent it for the holidays.

3. Love Actually- This is actually one of my favorite movies ever (as well as #2 & #1). It had some questionable scenes, but it was a very fascinating movie.

2. Serendipity- My favorite romantic comedy ever. I've seen this movie 100 times (not really) and I still never really know if he'll get the girl.

1. Elf- If I were forced to watch this movie everyday until the day I died, I really don't think I'd be upset.

There you have it!! Alright, let's see your list! Let me know what I'm missing.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Let the Wedding Frenzy Begin!!

First and foremost I want to announce that my brother, Josh, just got engaged to his girlfriend (NOW FIANCEE) Christine on Saturday night. The Melin's are so excited to welcome her into our family. So when I say, "Let the wedding frenzy begin," I don't only mean ours, but their will be coming fast also. WOOT WOOT!!

Now onto what's new with us in the wedding realm. As I mentioned in a few posts and as Ronnie has mentioned, we have really ramped up the wedding planning by visiting venues and trying on dresses. The main reason for the fire under our butts is because my mom is home from Shanghai and we only have 2 weeks with her to power through the big stuff. Before she heads back on January 2, we want to have a dress bought, a venue picked, a flower vendor and MAYYYYBE invitations decided on, designed and ordered. We are well on our way to making it through that list after this last week.

On Wednesday my mom and I went to one venue, on Thursday we went to another venue and to a bridal boutique, and on Saturday, Ronnie's mom, Chris, and younger brother, Andrew, came up to Phoenix to join me, my mom, and Ronnie in some dress shopping and venue hopping. As of now, we almost have our mind made up on the venue (see the venue at and a dress (YES...THE DRESS!!!!!!). I am a little nervous to make the final call on the dress, but I think I found the one. We all looked at dresses together (RONNIE TOO) and got everyone's opinion of what looks best (me not letting on to what I reallllly liked so Ronnie wouldn't know). After that, my mom and I went to another store and ended up finding something that I think everyone will reallllllly love, but that no one would ever have guessed or picked out...that way Ronnie will be SURPRISED!!!! I am super excited!!

So anywhooo...that is where we are with things. I wish I had something more entertaining or educational to share with you, but unfortunately for you, I only have wedding on the brain. I have attached a few photos for your viewing pleasure, but I'm not going to post any pictures of me in dresses (as I originally thought I would) for fear of Ronnie figuring out what the dress will look like.

I did have one favor to ask of all of you. I WANT SUGGESTIONS. Did you or someone you know have a cool, unique thing at your wedding? Did you find really good deals on something? Did you discover and tips or tricks? Are you a wedding planner and want to just tell me what to do? LET ME KNOW!!! Seriously...I'd love input!!

Ceremony site looking from where we'd be standing to where the guests would be sitting

Looking at where we'd be standing (see the stone at the end?)

Wedding dress shopping!!!!!!! MY FAVORITE PART!!!!!

Fight of My Life

Guest Post by Lindsay Conde

We’ve all been there, well many of us have. You know what I’m talking about, the “wake up and smell my reality” moment. The “whoa”, “ah-hah”, or “holy sh#t” moment. This is specifically the point at which, despite our most valiant efforts to ignore it, the truth about our health situation smacks us right in the face. I, personally, have had two of these. One happened when I was still a “child.” I mean I was 20, but still behaving like a juvenile. The other was more recent, in January it will have been 2 years. Two years since that instant, the smack.

Some choose to look at this experience negatively but not me. Although I do not remember the event fondly, I view it as somewhat of a turning point for me. Here is my story…..

At the time, I was 26 years old, had been married for over 2 years, and had my beautiful son. Life was good and I truly felt blessed. We lived about 30 minutes away from my parents. My CF clinic and doctors were in Nashville, but I had a local doc in Knoxville. I started to come down with something around the second week in January. My usual symptoms: sore throat, increased cough, coughing up more mucus, fever, and lack of energy. So I immediately made an appointment with my doctor. They saw me, prescribed Cipro for 14 days, and sent my sick butt home. After several days of being on the antibiotic, one night my fever spiked big time. I took my O2 sats, to find out that I was at 91, when I usually hover around 97/98. I was having quite a bit of trouble breathing, so my husband took me to the emergency room. On the way, he called my parents and they met us at the hospital. I remember feeling really weak, so much so that they put me in a wheel chair once we entered the ER. But, I had no idea just how bad things would get. In the ER, they took my blood pressure, 02 sats (89), temperature (102.8), all the usual stuff. They also did a chest x-ray and found “double pneumonia”. I was admitted right away and hooked up to an IV for immediate antibiotics and steroids. They put me on oxygen (4-6 liters if I remember correctly) and took a ton of blood. After 5 days in the hospital, my 02 sats had bounced back up to 96, so they discharged me. I was sent home with a PICC line and IV antibiotics and oral steroids. I went home, though I was not feeling much better. (And that was the last time that I ignored my inner voice, my gut telling me what I know is best for me) I was home with my husband and son for 24 hours.

The following evening, the same thing happened all over again. My fever spiked, my sats dropped, and I could not breathe. Once again, my poor husband rushed me to the local ER. Once again I was admitted immediately. Another chest x-ray was done, which showed the pneumonia consuming my lungs. Things were much worse now and my whole body felt it. I was barely conscious, in a lot of pain, and on 6 liters of oxygen. I had never felt so weak and scared. After 4 days in the hospital, I was still sleeping a lot. One morning I awoke to what I think was the sound of the doctor talking to my husband outside my room door. For all I know, I dreamt the whole thing. But in the conversation between a professional and my worried husband, the words “she is not responding to treatment” were mentioned. My husband asked about the options, to be given unappealing choices. It was then that I heard him beg the doctor for more time, more time on the antibiotics. He pleaded with the doc that “my wife is a fighter and is so strong, she can beat this!” I remember at that moment feeling unbelievable fear. This was the first time that oral and IV antibiotics weren’t working.

My health continued to decline and I was just feeling worse and worse. Was it possible that I was not going home? Was I going to die in here? What if I never made it home to hug my little boy again? All these thoughts and questions came flooding into my mind. I was desperately trying to remember the last time I told everyone I loved them, that I hugged them, and expressed how much they mean in my life. Every second spent with my husband and son was flashing before my eyes. The smiles, the laughs, and the tears all seemed so distant but beautiful. I couldn’t possibly say goodbye to my little boy, I had promised to always protect and be there for him. Realistically, if I left him now….he would never have any memory of me.

It was right then that I actually felt myself getting angry. I was angry at my situation and at myself for being so pessimistic. I was also indescribably furious at the idea of never seeing my son graduate high school, never dancing with my sweet husband on our 10th (or 20th or 30th, etc) anniversary, at all the things I would miss out on in my family’s life. Then came a moment of absolute clarity for me. I was dealing with this all wrong. I was looking at the big picture and trying to tackle this monster all at once. Individual’s rarely succeed with that type of strategy. I needed to take control of things one at a time, start with something small and build on that. I was going to beat this, to kick this pneumonia’s ass…but I needed to be realistic about it. It had wore me down, but I was by no means out. I decided right and there that I was going home to my son. I was going to hug him again, and kiss him, and play with him. No matter how much time it took, I was going to conquer this demon and find my way back to he and my husband and our (semi) normal life. So when my husband came back into my hospital room, I asked him to bring me something from home. It may sound silly or even trivial, but I asked him to bring me my makeup bag. My plan was to start feeling better on the outside in order to gain back my strength and heal the inside. So when he came back with that makeup bag, I asked him to help me take a shower. He so lovingly did, and then helped me blow dry my hair, and put on some makeup.

I was in the hospital for a total of 3 and ½ weeks, but I made it home. When I walked through that front door, I wasn’t 100% back to my old self. I still had my PICC line and my regiment of treatments and meds to do several times a day. But I was better and continuing to improve. I have never really been the type of person that allows other people to dictate my capabilities. Once I set my mind to do something, it gets done! That’s part of why I fell in love with my husband, because he is the same way. We sit around occasionally and talk about how hard that time was and how scared we both were. But I know, that with the right mindset, him by my side, and my family in my corner…..I can take on the world

Bio: Hello Everyone! My name is Lindsay and I am 28 years old and living with CF. I was diagnosed as an infant, after my older sister passed away from CF when she was just 5 months old. So, that makes me the oldest of 3 siblings in my family that deal with Cystic Fibrosis everyday. Life has most definitely been full of its' challenges, but also its' blessings. If you would like to know more about me, or about my "challenges", feel free to ask :) Until then, I am so happy to be here and would love to get to know you all.