The Mayhem of May 2014

After an emotional month of April, there really hasn't been much calmness in our midst.  I guess such is the life with cancer and the emotional roller coaster that we ride.  We had so much going during May, especially when you add in the end of the school year, that it was more non-stop chaos...otherwise known as Mayhem in the Dismuke house!  So here are the highlights of the month, including T-ball, soccer, lacrosse, Preschool fun, Tim Tebow, another Chuck E. Cheese visit, St. Jude fun, and of course water fun!

Ingram has had so much fun playing T-ball again this season.  He's played so many different positions, but his favorite by far is playing catcher.  There must be something extra special about wearing a catcher's suit (even if it's bigger than he is) because he begged to wear it even when it was a thousand degrees outside!  He even "arranged" eating dinner with the coaches and other boys when we went to the same restaurant. 

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Big Hit For The Little Man!


Cutest Catcher Ever!!


Crouching Conqueror, Hidden Dragon??


Sitting At The Coaches Table!

From one field to another, Ingram had a ball supporting his girls in all of their ventures.  He loved being at all the different fields and always cheered on Madison, Lindsey, and their friends.  We had regular season soccer and lacrosse games, tournaments for both sports, and an out of town tournament with Madison's soccer team.  Of course, Ingram loved running around and playing tag at every field and always found another kid or two to play with once he was finished his "biggest fan ever" duties!  He also loves to be in the middle of everything that the girls are involved in; I think he's going to take their teenage years to an all new "annoying little brother" level!

Madison's Biggest Lacrosse Fan!


Ingram And Collin...Favorite Soccer Buddies
 
Oh Yeah, This Is How We Roll...
Dinner At 10pm After a Soccer Game Out Of Town And
Ingram's At The Head Of The Table With Madison's Team!


Ingram The Water Gun Collector At Lindsey's Soccer Party!


Due to some last minute schedule changes, Ingram got to be a part of the Family Advisory Council at St. Jude for the day.  We packed up his bag with all sorts of goodies and he set up camp in the corner of a room of about 30 adults.  He watched a little TV, played a few games, drew some pictures, and went to a special luncheon with the committee.  Whoever said all day committee meetings were boring definitely has never been a part of SJCRH!  We also made a visit to SJ to have all of Ingram's Psycho Educational testing completed and we both loved being back in the hospital.  I know that's odd, but we love SJ and love seeing everyone when we're there.  Ingram sailed through 3 and a half hours of one-on-one appointments with three different "testers" (as he calls them).  We ended his day seeing Mrs. Penny and even got a new coloring book!

The Newest Member Of The SJFAC!


Oh Man We Have Missed Mrs. Penny!!


And then there's Preschool...don't be afraid to get a tissue because I cry even thinking about this one!  This is Ingram's final month of Preschool...EVER!  These are Ingram's favorite guys from his time at Preschool; they've been in each others classes every year.  They are all sweet boys but when they're together it's a totally different ballgame.  They sort of feed off of each other and they're such little goofballs and lots of trouble!!  Play dates at the park and restaurants in addition to lots of mischief in the classroom have led to the best year ever in this years class.  This foursome will be split up in four different schools in the Fall, but I feel certain that these boys will find a way to stick together.  Ingram's Spring Fling (think field day for school aged kids but with bouncy houses and snow cones) and Preschool Program (think of all the kids in all the classes on stage together...better yet, imagine a zoo with lots and lots of animals that want to be seen) were so much fun and definitely the best of all of his years.  It definitely has to do with this group of boys!


Harrison, Jacob, Nolan, And Ingram
Oh We Are Going To Miss Seeing These Boys 3 Times A Week!


Ingram Was Having "Remembories" About His Preschool Friends While Daddy Was Tucking
Him In Bed.  They Made Him This Blanket While He Was Recovering From Brain Surgery


Another Big Day...Last Preschool Payment!

Last Preschool Spring Fling


Walking Down The Aisle For His Last Preschool Program!


Perfect Photo Bombing Opportunity From One Of The Best Teachers!!


Can't End Preschool Without One Last "Injury"

Everyone who has heard a small bit of our story about Ingram and St. Jude has likely heard about Tim Tebow and how Craig was "training" Ingram to be a quarterback like Tebow prior to the start of his headaches.  If you've heard the full version, we jokingly refer to it as Daddy's Man Crush on Tebow and somehow it actually got back to Tebow.  Not only did Ingram receive an autographed football, but we also have a voicemail message from Tim Tebow himself!! 


Check It Out...Tim Tebow #15!!

Listening To A Voicemail From Tim Tebow On The Way To Take The Girls To The Airport!!

The end of May was a very exciting and busy time!  The girls began their 2014 Team Ingram fundraising with a trip down to Texas to meet with prospective donors and to hang out with G-Mommy and G-Daddy.  Ingram was more than excited to have us all to himself while the girls were on their business trip!  Ingram loved doing anything and everything he wanted to do and didn't miss his girls at all until we were at the airport waiting to pick them up on the 9th day.  He went to the lake for an afternoon, to Chuck E. Cheese with Daddy, to the park to play tennis, out to eat at his favorite El Mezcal and Chick Fil A, and sooooo much more.

We're pretty sure the girls were too busy to miss any of us between all the fun they were having with G-Mommy, G-Daddy, and Aunt Leigh!  They went to an Astro's game, to Schlitterbahn Waterpark, to a super fun party at church.  They helped with a bridal shower at G-Mommy's house for U.S. Women's Gymnast Natasha Kelley and they made a few trips to get Starbucks, ice cream, and candy!  Of course, the main reason for the trip was to meet with the CEO John Chisholm of Flotek Industries and with the CEO Paul Kruse of Blue Bell Ice Cream!  And by all accounts, the business meetings went quite well with Blue Bell very excited about partnering with the girls to help meet their fundraising goals AND with Flotek matching dollar for dollar the next $25,000 the girls raise!!!  What a huge success for two sisters who are only 10 and 12 years old!  So let the official Team Ingram St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend begin!! 

If you would like to join in being part of the beginning of their fundraising, please follow this link www.heroes.stjude.org/madisondismuke and make a donation of any size to help us get that matching donation.  Also if you would like to be a part of Team Ingram and participate in the SJMMW, follow this link www.stjudemarathon.org  to sign up for one of the races as a Hero and be a part of Team Ingram!


The Boys Sending Off The Girls (Flying Solo) To Texas!

Watch Out Texas...They're Here!


Ingram And Beau And Their New "Bed" For The Week!
Ingram Wanted It To Be Just Like His Bed During Treatment And The Funny Thing
Is That Beau Did The Same Thing Back Then Too.
 
Madison And Natasha At Her Wedding Shower Saturday Morning In Texas


The Girls Helping Serve At Natasha's Shower With Aunt Leigh And Bertha

Yeah Baby...It's Good To Be Back!

 
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Ingram Decided He Was Scared To Knee Board Without His Girls With Him This Trip.  This Clip Is AFTER Be Promised He Wouldn't Scream And Cry To Get Off But BEFORE He Remembered How Much He Loved To Knee Board.  He Stuck To It And Gave Us The "Thumbs Up" And Lots Of Tricks Until We Finally Made Him Get Back In The Boat At The End Of The Day.



Woohoo!! He's Back In The Saddle Again!

Speed...I Need Speed!
Ingram Loves Driving The Boat FAST!

And The Girls Are Having Their Own Fun With Light Saber Wars!

Yes, The Girls Are At The Blue Bell Ice Cream Factory!
And They're Not Just Eating Ice Cream Either,
Fundraising 2014 Has Begun!
 
4 Team Ingram Members On A Fundraising Adventure, But G-Mommy And Mrs. Debbie
Were Not Allowed Into The Meeting. The Girls Wanted To Do It On Their Own.


Ingram Figured Since The Girls Were At Blue Bell Eating Ice Cream,
He Needed To Eat Some Too. But I Bet The Girls Didn't Put Fries On Theirs!

Ingram Practicing For The FESJC (Because He Thinks He's Playing Too)!

Even Practicing In The Pouring Rain With Daddy And Mr. Bryce!

Ingram's New Pokemon Toy From Mr. Bryce And Mrs. Stephanie From
An After Dinner Run To Target And Gracie Blue!


The Girls With The CEO Of Flotek Industries, John Chisholm



A Little Reward Lunch From G-Mommy After A Successful Fundraising Meeting
With Mr. Chisholm And His Flotek Team!


Looks Like We Have Another Independent Thinker In Our House!
He Created This Little Contraption All By Himself And Without An Instruction Book!


Helping Clean Up The Tree Limbs For Daddy After Playing With His Lego's!

Look Who Made An Appearance At A FESJC Party While They Were In Texas??
 

Uh, I'm Not Quite Sure How This Happened,
But It Has Aunt Leigh's Influence Written All Over It!

Now This One, I Totally Blame On G-Mommy!
 

The Girls With Javier Bracamonte At The Houston Astros' National Civil Rights Game!
Of Course Javier Is Standing (In Between The Girls) Down In The Bullpen,
But Lindsey Is Holding The Ball He Signed For Them!



After 10 Days, We're Ready For These Two To Get Home!

Working On "Patience Is A Virtue" Is A Real Hard Thing To Do!


Apparently They Were Ready To See Us Too!!

Yep, Our World Is Back To Chaos...And It's Awesome!

Please continue to keep our family and all the other family battling Childhood Cancer in your prayers.  We hear both good news and bad news from other cancer families on a daily basis and we know they all would appreciate any extra prayers.  We are so grateful to God for bringing us this far in Ingram's journey and ask for prayers for peace leading up to Ingram's MRI on Tuesday June 24th, and of course for clear scans.  We will also be talking with our Doctors about some side effects that we have been noticing that are most likely from all the effects of surgery and treatment that make us a little nervous.  We're also awaiting all of Ingram's Educational Testing results so that we are all a little more prepared for our new Kindergartner this Fall. 

Once again, thank you for all your prayers and support! 
 

A Busy And Emotional April 2014

Warning: it's another long post but full of pictures and videos!!

Madison and Lindsey taught Ingram about April Fool's Day and he loves the whole idea!  His famous "fool" of the day is "You've got a chicken on your head!" and then he points to our heads and starts cracking up!  I have no idea where he got this, but it is definitely funny when he does it.  We "scream" every single time he does it (and we've lost count) and he just laughs and laughs!

These Three Were Definitely Fooling Around On Their Zombie Lunch!

Ingram Ran Off With Daddy To Fool Us With His Monkey Bar Adventures!

Ingram has had a lot of T-ball games this month and he loves it and has so much fun with his team.  He's really getting the hang of it and loves playing in the yard with us.  He must take after his Daddy but I'm not sure if Daddy ever made dirt piles when he was on the field!  At one of his games (that I missed because I was running the girls to all their places) he knocked one over every one's heads; Madison dubbed that one a home run and I'm sure the story will only get better over time!  Lucky for me, Daddy was there and snagged some great pictures and videos that are below.  Ingram also had his T-ball pictures taken before one game (that ended up getting rained out) and he and his team were hard to corral for the group picture because they were too busy running around being crazy boys.  And I love how normal that is!


These Little Sluggers Have Had Soooo Much Fun!
Ingram's Bringing On The Cheese For Sure!
 
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A huge event in our cancer world was on April 10th...Ependymoma Awareness Day!  This day happens every April and we had no idea about it or any other major cancer days/months until we were diagnosed, ironically in April.  We celebrated and spread the word about Ependymoma and St. Jude with Ingram's "Ependymoma twin" Allie Allen and her family.  We released balloons with tags on them at the Allen's house and of course Ingram had lots of fun with Allie while he was there.  Keep both Ingram and Allie and all the other Ependymoma kids and their families in your prayers as they will deal with Ependymoma and its effects for the rest of their lives.


The Crew At The Allen House

Ingram And Allie
Ependymoma Twins

Look At Them Go!

Tag Anyone?

Ingram had a couple of fun preschool moments this month and he was talking about them forever.  The first was a "field trip" and the second was his Easter Egg Hunt and party.  For his field trip, they walked through the parking lot of the church to the park next door and then the real fun began.  We led the kids on a treasure hunt for bugs and we were digging and rolling over dead trees that had fallen (small ones of course) to catch all sorts of bugs with our bug tweezers and bug buckets.  I never thought I would be touching bugs like this but it was so fun to see Ingram and all of his friends get so excited about everything that God made in the forest.  Thankfully we didn't see any snakes or we would have all been running for the hills!  His Easter egg hunt was great and had a lot to do with Math too.  They had to count their eggs to make sure they found them all and they could only pick up their assigned number.  The sweet part of this was that whenever they saw someone else's number on the egg, they'd yell for them so they'd know where it was.  Half of the time, they would pick it up and run it across the field to their friend; it was so cute and surprising that they knew all 17 kids numbers too!  Both of these days were great weather days and the kids, teachers, and parents alike loved soaking up the sunshine and good ole Vitamin D.



Ingram And Cole Spotted His "1!"

"Cheesing" At The Preschool Easter Egg Hunt!

Ingram, Jake, And Samuel Comparing Their Finds!

Boys And Bugs!!

Easter was also a super fun weekend and we celebrated it three times; once with Mimi, Pops, Aunt Amye, Uncle Len, Carley and Brett, then with Grandmother, and then with just the five of us on Sunday.  On Saturday we saw everyone in Jackson and enjoyed a huge meal and Easter Egg hunt for the 5 cousins.  I still don't understand why they find all the eggs in a quarter of the time that it takes us to hide them.  We also had a pretty fierce game of wiffle ball in the front yard at Amye and Len's while Mimi and Pops watched from the porch.  I think they were pretty wise not to play since the kids (Daddy and Uncle Len included) were all pretty competitive!  It was a fun long day and I think all the kids had no trouble falling asleep after their showers and "tick checks" from the woods.  Easter Sunday was a great day with the kids at church and at home; we even stopped to take pictures at a park on the way to lunch and got some really cute ones of the kids.  Even though I love our Easter picture from 2012 which was two days after brain surgery, I love this years even more because it shows how far we have all come in these past two years...especially Ingram. 


Batter Up!

"Not Today Ingram!" Courtesy of Lindsey

Pretty Sure That's Not Legal In Wiffle Ball!

And Again...Pretty Sure Those Girls Are Doing Something That's Against The Rules!

Uh Oh...I Guess Kids Do Learn From Their Parents!
Is Holding In Wiffle Ball A Foul Or Something?

Man On A Mission

Daddy And Madison Making A Secret Play

The Whole "Jones" Crew!

Ingram Wanted To Take A Picture Of Grandmother Before We Left Her House!
The Only Problem Was He Was Already In The Car With The Camera.

Of Course Ingram Found The Deer!

And Get Stuck In Tree Jail!

Crazy Boys!

Can You See The Mischief In Lindsey's Smile??

...Because Here It Is!!

Daddy And Madison

Easter 2014 Family Picture

And This Is Ingram's Face After Pictures At Lunch When We Realized That ALL Of The Fish On His Bow Tie Were Dead Because His Tie Was Upside Down Thanks To Mommy!

Madison also celebrated her 12th birthday and of course Ingram was right in the middle of her and all of her friends!  We had her party the week before her birthday so that they could recover over a long weekend (they stayed up till 3am!!) and then celebrated her birthday "family style" a day early since we had four ball games on her actual birthday night.  El Mezcal, TCBY, and Dunkin Donuts were part of the festivities for her party while a homemade pizza dinner and TCBY were part of the family dinner.  The extra fun part of family dinner was heading to TCBY for ice cream!  Of course somehow Gibson's donuts and Chick Fil A were a surprise lunch drop off at school.  Ingram loved it because he ate more donuts than anyone that week and gave Madison "Birthday Love Pats" in front of everyone.  Lucky for Madison it started storming during one of her games and all the other games got cancelled so she got to have a third birthday celebration with some of her Lacrosse buddies at El Mezcal and TCBY...again!  Of course we were there too...just at a distance so that we didn't embarrass her because, you know, she's 12 now!



I'm In The Car Keeping An Eye On Them Because They Left Without Me!
Madison Is Rollerblading, Ingram Is Riding His Scooter, And
Lindsey And Daddy Are Riding Their Bikes!



He's Very Proud Of Himself For Making It The Whole Way!


The Monkey In The Middle Is Now 12!!

The Crazy Crew!
Sarah, Ally, Emily, Libby, Madison, and Megan

See?? He's Always Trying To Get In The Middle!
Oh What A Night It Was!

ECS, one of our local private schools that's right down the street, participates in the St. Jude Bike-A-Thon every year with their Kindergarten classes every year and they asked us to come out again.  Ingram loved it last year and I think this year was more fun because he was feeling much better and it was warmer compared to last year.  We got to talk to the classes and Ingram showed them pictures from surgery to baldies (he and daddy with shaved heads) to eating potato chips for breakfast to a picture of him getting his chemo to his Make-A-Wish trip to Disney.  We even brought "I Love St. Jude" tattoos for all the kids and of course Ingram was wearing his...one on his belly and one on his arm.  The kids were so sweet and let Ingram "lead" them for their first lap around the school; and when I say "let" I mean Mrs. Taylor and Mrs. Robbins told them not to pass Ingram at all on the first lap!  We had such a fun day with all the kids and Ingram ended up getting a popsicle, a juice box, and a goodie bag of swim toys!  Once we got home, Ingram used for the whole rest of the day and weekend swimming in the backyard with his new swimming toys. 


The Serious Side Of Kindergarten At ECS

And Definitely The Not-So-Serious Side!

Start Your Engines!

They're Coming Around The Far Corner With One More Turn Before
They Can Go As Fast As They Want!
The Pace Car Named Ingram Is About To Give Out!

This Is More His Style...Chatting With Mrs. Taylor While He Rides To "His" Finish Line!

This Is A Link To The ECS/St. Jude Bike-A-Thon Video!
 
 
Playing With His New Dive Toys!

Yippie!! Woohoo!!

One of the last hurdles for Ingram to start Kindergarten in the Fall is the dreaded "kindergarten shots."  We decided with the help of our SJ doctors and our regular pediatrician to go ahead and get them out of the way.  It turns out that he almost weighs 50 pounds (technically 47.7 pounds) and has grown to 45 inches tall!  Talk about miracles and our amazing God...he was down to 22 pounds less only a year and a half ago!  He ended up getting 4 shots which translated into 4 stickers (two for him and two for his girls), a special lunch of his choice, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle sunglasses, and a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle movie.  I'm not exactly sure, but it seems like he definitely knows what strings to pull on Mommy!


He Loves Wearing This Shirt And Shorts Together ALL THE TIME For Some Reason!
But Since He's Growing So Fast, Maybe It Will Only Last The Summer?

Passed His "Shapes And Letters" Vision Test!

Totally Wrapped Around His Fingers!

April is Ingram's "Cancerversary" month and it has been quite a month indeed.  April is when it all started for us with the first phone call, the first time hearing Ingram and Cancer in the same sentence, the first hug between Craig and I that seemed to last forever when I pulled up to his office with Ingram to go to LeBonheur, the first hospital admission to LeBonheur, the first time we had to answer "Is Ingram going to die?" from Madison and Lindsey, the first time to meet our son's brain surgeon, the first of hundreds of iv's, the first surgery, the first time to walk into St. Jude as a patient, the first of sleepy medicine, and on and on and on.  We have had many emotions around here and I even started to slip into my own pity party about his cancer.  Thankfully, Craig was able to pull me out of it before it got out of control and helped me realize all of the positive things about Ingram being diagnosed that I was losing sight of.  The list is way to long for me to list, but the top of the list is that God loves Ingram more than we do and I'll leave it at that.

Ingram will undergo Psycho Educational testing in May at St. Jude to determine any possible deficits from his brain surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy  so that we can be better prepared for Ingram starting school in the Fall.  And then in June, Ingram will return for his quarterly MRI to determine if he has any cancer in his body.  This will be a long wait but hopefully our busy schedule including end of school events, T-ball, soccer, swimming, and the Fed Ex St. Jude Golf Classic will help take some of the scanziety away!  Please continue to keep Ingram and all the other children battling cancer in your prayers. It's a lifelong battle and it affects everyone in their families and every one of their friends.