Archive for the ‘Blinded by Science’ Category

Stop what you’re doing and watch

September 7, 2010

No News is Good News???

August 10, 2010

Hello all and thank you for your notes of support. Today was a medically uneventful day for the Mixons. Jen continues to recover quickly and really just yearns for some good, uninterrupted sleep. I hate to tell her, but that ain’t happening for a long time.

I want to recap a discussion we had with her pediatrician this morning. We informed the same pediatrician that the boys see that Maryellen was born. He came in to see her within an hour of birth (just happened to be in the area). His initial impression was that she looked perfect. He was aware of the prenatal ultrasound findings, but had a hard time believing them just by examining her. This morning, he had read all the same updates as all of you have and he commented on how humbling of an experience this is for him. For a child to possibly have several malformations to be acting and looking so normal was a testament to how resilient we are. To me, it just reaffirms the words of Psalm 139:13-16

   13 For you created my inmost being;
       you knit me together in my mother’s womb.

  14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
       your works are wonderful,
       I know that full well.

  15 My frame was not hidden from you
       when I was made in the secret place.
       When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,

  16 your eyes saw my unformed body.
       All the days ordained for me
       were written in your book
       before one of them came to be.

Knowing that God has knit this child together, we acknowledge that He is in control and that he has a plan for her! What a relief.

We were able to make it to rounds in the NICU this morning where the plan remains watch and wait. Maryellen continues to look absolutely adorable (not a medical term). The NICU nurses also thought that she looked a little generic and changed her “linens” and hat to obtain a more girly feel. We were thankful. We really wanted to be able to hold her and the doctors and nurses readily agreed! She had a repeat Echocardiogram this afternoon. There were 2 small pieces of news. The PDA (Patent Ductus Arteriosus) is closer to closing. This means that the challenge of more mature circulation is approaching (her first real test). In addition, her heart function was below-normal at birth and this has improved without intervention! Baby steps…

Many have asked if there is anything they can do and other than pray (and send food!), we appreciate the continued support. More photos from today!

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Pinch me

November 23, 2009

I have been an Ole Miss fan as long as I can remember. I grew up less than one mile from the heart of campus and as hard as I tried to escape, I am glad that I decided to be a Rebel. In this time, I have had the opportunity to watch our football team win games we should have lost and lose games that should not have even been close. All this to set the stage for Saturday’s showdown with #8 LSU. There is no team out there that I have more animosity towards than LSU.

When in college, I travelled to Baton Rouge twice to watch the rivalry. In 1997 as a freshman and in the marching band, we won 36-21 in a day game. I will never forget the near-constant rain of bottles and cups that were thrown at the band throughout the game. That’s classy. In 1999, Jen and I drove down for a night game (in the rain) and we put it to them 42-23. With those 2 results, you might think that we have had the upper hand in the series, but 02-07 found us losing 6 in a row. If you look back on the series tally (since I was old enough to go to games), LSU has held the edge 15-9. All this to say, there is a lot of bad blood between these two schools.

Enter Saturday, Nov 21. The CBS SEC game of the week. The early game was dominated by Ole Miss with a couple of questionable calls that took the rebels out of the endzone twice, having to settle for a field goal and a LSU int for a TD. The defense held strong and we went in at the half down only 17-15.

The 3rd quarter was a field position struggle and the real excitement came in the 4th quarter. Dexter McCluster has been the hero of the second half of the season and completed his first pass ever for a TD with 13 minutes left to go putting us up 17-22. A clock-eating drive gave us a field goal to go up 17-25. Up by a TD with 2-pt conversion with 3:42 to go. What happened next is legendary. A methodical drive by LSU gave them a TD with 1:17 left pulled them to within 2. After 2 tries at the conversion, the rebels somehow managed to hold onto a 2 point lead.

Everyone knew the on-sides kick was coming and LSU ran it to perfection. At this point, I had indigestion. I could just see Ole Miss losing this to a last-second field goal. I could barely watch. The mental vaccuum that is the offensive minds in LSU somehow botched clock management and the tigers ended up on the Ole Miss 6yd line with the game clock expired. For once, things went our way. I waited for 10 minutes (well after the game coverage went off the air) to allow myself to breathe and enjoy the tally mark in the win column. At 8-3 with the Egg bowl left to play, the Rebels are finding a way to redeem what was supposed to be a great season. Will await bowl predictions soon.

The night only got more interesting as we went to a Mannheim Steamroller concert. Yes, the uber-popular Christmas music phenomenon tours and has been doing so for some time. Needless to say, it was a Laser Drum, Laser Light, Laser violin extravaganza. I lost it when the violin player pulled a spin move. It was a good day.

Next: Highlights!

Where would we be without technology?

July 13, 2009

dim

Lessons Learned

December 9, 2008

So, for the curious in the crowd, here’s an explanation of the events as they unfolded Sunday night. I was blogging away about the weekend that was and took a jab at Phil Stacey. Many of you remember him as the bald-headed American Idol contestant from a few seasons ago. Within 30 minutes, I had 4 comments on the post up-in-arms that I would say something against him. So in light of this, I have learned a few things.

#1 I picked the wrong crowd to piss off. There exists a (previously unrecognized) middle-aged female paramilitary internet cabal who use Google Alerts to follow the every move of their crush. They are quick to declare a jihad on your blog if you dare criticize their star. Seriously people.

#2 This is a great way to get blog traffic. Josh noticed this. All you have to do is hate on something, then you’re a star. Next target: David Archuleta.

Hey Jealousy

August 4, 2008

So I actually heard the Gin Bloosoms once at Memphis in May circa 1997. They stunk. Anyway, Sister-in-law Christina is visiting and just got a new Macbook. Haven’t had a chance to check it out, but am currently using the iPod touch that came with the computer. I place my iPod mini next to it and am insanely jealous. I know that these new generation iPod have been around for a while, but still. I’m currently drafting my letter to Santa Claus.

Hypermiling

June 11, 2008

I was talking to a friend this morning about old (not antique) cars. I was reminiscing about my 1995 Ford F-150 (manual tranny) and he had a similar year VW Jetta. There were talks of great gas mileage and he brought up a new term to me: Hypermiling. Generally stated, it’s the practice of getting ridiculous MPG out of your car. While this may not work for those Hummer drivers, I’m thinking that I can get on board with this. I obviously am taking the content for this from elsewhere. Check out these 2 sites if interested. The first has an interesting article on traffic.

www.hypermiling.com

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypermiler

 As an example, and without really implementing too many of the stratagems, I made it home yesterday at 38.3 MPG. This was mainly accomplished with slower acceleration and maintaining a lower top speed. This obviously is difficult to do in extremely congested traffic, but the concepts are interesting. The “going green” aspect remains a contributor, but mainly I’m just trying to save a buck, you know?

Update: Made it to work today at 41.3 MPG. (2000 VW Passat with 145K miles). I’m assuming that the on-board computer is correct, I should probably try to correlate this. Nevertheless, I’m getting 33% better fuel economy!

It’s late and I’m up

May 23, 2008

Jen and I have begun to go through all our stuff and weed out the junk that we don’t want to pack. I have quite a few books and have been contemplating what to do with them. I was talking to a colleague and friend Sara Rippel in clinic today when inspiration hit. She is in an identical situation as she is moving to Nashville to start a fellowship (Pediatric GI). She has many books as well that are becoming progressively useless. She has been listing them on Amazon.com with a few positive results. She can do it, why not me?

So, logged on and posted a couple of books. Low and behold, not 5 hours later I’ve sold my first book. How in depth do I really need to know EKGs anyway? So $22 later, that’ll be one less book to pack and approximately 5.5 gallons of regular unleaded in the tank. Jen’s giving me strange looks as I scour the house, looking for things to sell.

As I was looking through old pictures, I found some of me as a youngster. I want to post 2 to compare myself with the junior size Avery. Let me know what you think.

Tuesday Variety Post

May 13, 2008

Been fairly busy over the last few days, so hopefully this will catch me up.

Went to see Speed Racer on opening night. Unfortunately it has received poor reviews and I’m scratching my head as to why. I was immensely entertained. Visually stunning, plenty of laughs. A real-life cartoon. I’m wondering if people who review movies are just a little uptight? Let loose and feel free to laugh.

Saturday brought a trip to Kennedy Space Center (finally). Josh and I made the trek over to the East coast. The crowd was pretty thin, so lines were non-exisent. Started off with the general tour and the first stop was the shuttle launch observation point. The shuttle Discovery was on the launch pad in preparation for a May 31 launch. We were there about 21 days prior to launch, so the protective cover was still hiding most of the shuttle from view.

In August, there will be 2 shuttle launches fairly close together and both launch pads will be occupied at the same time (like in Armageddon). Next stop was the Saturn V rocket pavilion. Unbelievable. All you Good Morning America fans will note that the Saturn V was just named number 5 in the “7 Wonders of America.” This machine is beyond imressive. I could quote a lot of facts about the power of the beast, but standing under it inspires awe.

The International Space Station (ISS) center was the last stop on the tour. This facility receives components from international contributors to the ISS and processes them for delivery to the station. Not much was happening Saturday, but still cool to see it. A brief lunch was followed by IMAX movie #1 about the ISS. Fun fact of the day: When the ISS is complete, it will replace Venus as the brightest ‘star’ in the night sky. The Shuttle Launch Experience was next. Basically a big magic motion theater, but a lot of fun. Saw IMAX #2 about the moon, also good. Finished up checking out the rocket garden (below) and a quick peek in the Astronaut Hall of Fame. All-in-all a great trip.

Mother’s Day was also a lot of fun. Went to a cookout at Frank’s house and made it home in time for boys AND mom to get naps. I spent the majority of the afternoon cooking. The menu consisted of: Scalloped Ham and Potatoes, Steamed Broccoli, Homemade biscuits, and Yellow cake (Duncan Hines) with chocolate icing. It was palatable.

Outside The Box

April 22, 2008

Here’s the latest with my dad. Upon speaking with the oncologist, we’ve firmly established that surgical resection is off the table. The remaining options traditionally are radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or some combo of the two. The upside of these “traditional” modalities is that there is a 20-25% 5-year survival rate (not that much of an upside). The downside is that chemo and radiation therapy messes you up and you feel like crap. So, in light of this, he has decided to explore other options.

As a physician, I have initial reservations about such plans, but let’s think outside the box and assume that we in the medical field don’t have all the answers. Many new medications have come from analyzing what other cultures have used as their traditional or native cures. Two recognizable examples are Gensing (used in traditional Chinese medicine for years) and Taxol, a naturally derived medicine (Yew tree) that has action against lung, breast, and ovarian cancer. So who’s to say that the cures my dad is looking at might not be all that strange?

Currently looking at a couple of different potential medications. The first is some kind of Venezuelan mushroom and the other is a compound derived from the bark of the Pawpaw tree. I’ve only begun to research these, but am hopeful that some positive results will come of it, and with fewer side effects. Not giving up, just looking for a different way.