Bucket List

I have a bucket list. It doesn’t have much on it.

I already did zip-lining. My husband, Alex, did it with me. Bless him! We are both scared of heights!! We did it anyway. We had to admit we had fun. Haha. I’d do it again…in a heartbeat. I screamed, I love you, Alexander when I took the first step off the tower. It felt very exhilarating taking that first step.

I would like to go horse back riding. I’ve never been on a horse. I think it would be awesome.

I’ve already gone on train rides through Colorado. There were four trains. I have always found trains to be interesting.

Enjoy!

Laurie Jackson

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Update on Laurie

First I would like to apologize for taking so long to post an update. It has been a week and a a half since Laurie’s surgery and I have been by her side the whole time.

The pathology report came back and it was as suspected. Laurie does have cancer. The tumor was a high grade glioma multiforme blastoma. It is the most aggressive of the primary brain tumors. The surgeon told us it will come back, the oncologist told us that treatment will eventually stop working. How much time we have it not known at this time. She will be seeing a neuro oncologist on Aug 8th at the Siteman Cancer Center in St Louis, MO. The doctor specializes in this type of tumor.

The tumor affected Laurie’s right side (causing weakness and some loss of direction from her brain to arm and leg). It also affected her speech and language area. She has aphasia (difficulty in finding her words and getting them out) – both spoken and written (texting and typing included). She has been at a rehabilitation hospital since last Wed night. She gets physical, occupational, and speech therapy. She is making amazing progress. I have no idea if she will ever be able to blog again, but I know she will try her hardest to. She loves to write and she loves this blog.

Below are some pictures of Laurie’s journey so far:

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Alex – Laurie’s Husband

Prayer – Update

Laurie made it through the surgery without any complications. They removed a tumor just bigger then a golf ball. She had a good night. She has been talking, eating jello, laughing and crying. Her speech is still affected and will probably need therapy. The right side weakness showed some improvement then slid back a bit. She is still trying to sleep off the anesthesia.

We could possibly have the pathology report today. She has a long road to recovery but she is a fighter and will make it through this.

Alex

A Prayer

This is Laurie’s husband. I am writing this because Laurie is in the hospital and will be having brain surgery tomorrow (Thursday July 14th). On Monday a CT found a 3 cm mass on the left side of her brain. Over the last 2 weeks it has been affecting her speech, ability to text, write, type, and spell. It is considered an aggressive tumor because of how fast the symptoms have progressed. Yesterday weakness on the right side of her mouth showed up and has moved to her arm today.

She is a talented writer and this is devastating for her. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers. We don’t know yet what type of tumor it is or what other treatments will be needed. We won’t know this until the tumor is biopsied tomorrow.

I will update this when I know more.

Thank you everyone

Alex Jackson (Laurie’s husband)

From Grandma’s Country Kitchen

GERMAN CHOCOLATE CHEESECAKE SQUARES

1 package Fleischmann’s active dry yeast

1/2 cup warm water (105 to 115)

2 to 2 1/2 cups Gold Medal all-purpose flour

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 egg

1/2 cup margarine or butter, softened

2 packages (8 ounces each) plus 1 package (3 ounces) cream cheese, softened

1 cup sugar

1/3 cup Hershey’s cocoa

3 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla

Coconut-Pecan Topping (below)

Dissolve yeast warm water in a large bowl. Stir in 1 cup flour, 1/4 sugar, the salt, 1 egg and the margarine vigorously until smooth. Add enough remaining flour to make dough easy to handle. Turn onto lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, 3 to 5 minutes. Cover; let rest 20 minutes. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease jelly roll pan, 15 1/2 x 10 1/2 x 1 inch. Press dough in bottom and up sides of pan.Beat cream cheese in large bowl on medium speed. Gradually beat in 1 cup sugar and the cocoa until fluffy. Beat in 3 eggs, one at a time, and vanilla, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into crust. Bake until crust is golden brown and center is set, about 25 minutes, cool. Spread with Coconut-Pecan Topping. Refrigerate until chilled and firm, at least 1 hour. Cut into about 2 inch squares. Refrigerate any remaining squares.

3 dozen squares.

*If using self-rising flour, omit salt.

Note: Unbleached flour can be used in this recipe.

COCONUT-PECAN TOPPING

1/2 cup sugar

1 egg

1/2 cup evaporated milk

1/4 cup margarine or butter

2/3 cup flaked coconut

1/2 cup chopped pecans

1 teaspoon vanilla

Heat sugar, egg, milk and margarine in 1 quart saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until thick, about 12 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in remaining ingredients.

Enjoy!

Laurie Jackson

Things Your Mama Never Told You

You made her cry…a lot.

She cried in private. She didn’t want you to see her tears.

She wanted that last piece of pie.

Instead, she gave it to you. 

It hurt.

You hurt her feelings. A lot

She was always afraid.

She didn’t show it though. She was afraid for well-being. She worried all time. Mothers worried. That’s what they do.

She knows that she’s not perfect.

She did the best that she could. She knows she made a lot of mistakes. Raising kids was no easy task. She’d hope you would have forgave her. 

She watched you as you slept.

 She was amazed that she had created such beautiful child. 

She carried you a lot longer than nine months.

She would love you until the end of time.

It broke her heart every time you cried.

Not just each time you stumbled and fell. 

She put you first.

She made sacrifices so that you could have the best.

She would do it all again.

In a heartbeat. 

I was truly blessed with raising five healthy amazing kids—four boys and one daughter. They each had their own personality. They were as different as the day was long.

Motherhood was a tough job. I would not have missed it for anything. I’d do all again in a heartbeat.

Have a blessed day!

Laurie Jackson

From Grandma’s Country Kitchen — Fudge Pillows

FUDGE PILLOWS

1/2 cup margarine or butter

1 1/2 cups Gold Medal all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons water

1 teaspoon vanilla

Fudge-Cream Cheese Filling (below)

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cut margarine into flour and salt until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle in water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and vanilla, tossing with fork until all flour is moistened and dough cleans side of bowl. Divide dough into halves. Roll each half into rectangle, 12 x 8″ on cloth-covered board generously sprinkled with sugar. Cut each lengthwise into four 2-inch strips. Prepare Fudge-Cream Cheese Filling. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls into 6 mounds, 1 inch apart, onto 1 strip; top with another strip. Cut into six 2-inch squares; seal edges securely. Place squares about 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining strips and filling. Bake until light golden brown, about 15 minutes. Immediately remove from cookie sheet; cool.

2 dozen cookies

*If using self-rising flour, omit salt.

Note; Unbleached flour can be used in this recipe.

FUDGE-CREAM CHEESE FILLING

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1/4 cup Hershey’s cocoa

2 teaspoons milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 package (3ounces) cream cheese, softened

Mix all ingredients in small bowl until smooth.

Enjoy!

Laurie Jackson