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A Weekend of Holiday Spirit and an Early Gift – Great Counts

What better way to get in the holiday spirit than to spend a few days in New York City. We spent Saturday morning, looking at all the store windows and strolling through the market at Bryant Park. We watched the ice skaters in Bryant Park and Julia stopped to make a wish in the fountain. Thanks to some of Santa’s special elves, we had tickets for the 4:30 Radio City Christmas Show, so we headed back to the room in the early afternoon so that Julia could get some rest. She had quickly become tired from all the walking and we wanted to make sure that she was ready for the show.

After making our way through the mobs of people at Rockefeller Center, we arrived at Radio City. After a short wait in line, we were ushered to our seats. Julia was mesmerized by the show. From the Dance of the Toy Soldiers to the 1000 Dancing Santas, Julia could not take her eyes off the stage. I watched her throughout the show, seeing all the joy of the holidays in her smile.

We walked through Rockefeller Center after the show, seeing the “big” Christmas tree and the light show at Saks. As we walked down 5th Avenue, Julia saw the American Girl store and wanted to go in to “look around”. She was amazed with all the different dolls and decided that she wanted to make a doll “just like me”. With all the crowds, Julia quickly got tired, so she asked to go back to the room. We decided that we would use technology and look at all the dolls on line, finding one that looked like Julia. Thanks to another one of Santa’s magic elves, Julia was able to order a special American Girl doll with blue eyes, freckles and “light brown hair like I used to have”. I reminded Julia that her hair would soon grow back and she said “I know, but I can still miss it sometimes”.

Sunday morning we left New York and headed for the Lehigh Valley. We were meeting Aunt Cindy and going to see the Nutcracker. Upon our arrival at the theatre, we were met by a representative from the Lehigh Valley Ballet, who quickly escorted us back stage. Aunt Cindy had made arrangements for Julia to meet the Sugar Plum Fairy (who was a guest soloist from the NY City ballet). We took some photos and then went to our seats, watching a wonderful production of the Nutcracker. Julia is still humming the “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy”.

Monday brought a clinic visit and arm poke to check Julia’s blood counts. Due to some scheduling issues with the lab, we needed to wait until today to find out the results. Julia’s counts were great (ANC 4200, platelets 135 and hemoglobin 10.4). Her counts are on the upswing and Julia does not need to go back to clinic this week. She will have chemo as scheduled starting next Tuesday.

The rest of this week, Julia will be going to school, finishing her shopping for gifts, preparing to be the Star Angel in the Christmas pageant and visiting “the big guy in the red suit” so she can tell him what she wants for Christmas. “Just a big hug from Santa this year, Mom”. Hope that Santa is ready!

Merry Christmas!

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