Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Update on Ansley

Ansley is doing great!!  If you haven't checked her blog, you can scroll down our blog and a link to hers is listed on the right. Please continue to pray for this precious family. 

Thanks to Ansley's family and all that they are going through, I am once again reminded what Christmas is all about. It's about LIFE. The gift of life that God graciously gave to us through his son, Jesus Christ. We take life for granted! As Christmas Day quickly approaches, I am trying to remember that all the presents and food, parties and decorations, & desperate attempts at making memories for the kids, are gifts in itself.  These days are precious.  These moments are precious. I am so thankful for our healthy family of five. So, I hope that you, too, will enjoy this week. Be in the moment with your family. Get on the floor with your kids, play games and color, drive around a look at lights, sing Christmas songs, give hugs freely and say I love you.

Today is a gift!

Merry Christmas and many blessings,

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Praying for Ansley

Sweet 4 year old, Ansley, has been diagnosed with stage 3 anaplastic large cell (t cell) non-hodgkin lymphoma. Please do not google this as you will find statistics for adults & kids intertwined as well as very old information that is not trustworthy.  Lymphoma is very treatable in children and although Ansley will have a tougher road, there is still as 75% cure rate with her specific stage and type of cancer.  Praise God! She will have a year of chemo ahead of her which has already begun.  Please continue to pray for her and her family!  They have begun a blog with info, pictures and updates. If you would like to continue to keep up with Ansley and her family the website is:http://prayingforansley.blogspot.com  I'm sure this family covets as many prayers as they can get. May God bless you, Forester Friends and prayer warriors. You are a precious gift.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


Our little 4 year old friend has Lymphoma. Please continue to pray for her and her family.  I know they are still in shock and still trying to wrap their heads around the fact that their world has forever changed. 48 hours ago they thought they were dealing with simple belly pain, tonight they are dealing with pediatric cancer. Our family knows this grief and shock all too well.  I remember every moment of those first few weeks and they are definitely some of the most difficult they will face.  Please, please pray.

Thank you,


Urgent Prayer Request

Friends of ours here in Charleston  just learned that their youngest (5th) child who is 4 1/2, may have Lymphoma.  They are currently waiting for biopsy results to determine whether or not this is cancer and if it is, what type of Lymphoma.  We are gathering all resources to ask for prayer. So many did this for us almost 2 years ago.  Thousands were lifting up our Forester!  It was the greatest blessing of our lives.  Will you do the same for this precious little girl and her family?  *I will share more about them if I get permission to do so.

God's bring your healing power and your perfect peace!

Thank you,

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Halloween Pix! :)

painting pumpkins with grandma

preparing for the craziness ahead...

Craziness! But so much fun with friends!

my Star Wars kiddos

Trick or Treat!

Joshua YODA! (minus the hot annoying mask)

Slade's 1st time to Trick or Treat

She likes it!!

Grandma is ALWAYS festive!

Staci with Yoda & Ewok. :-)

Bye Bye Port!

(sorry, to re-post but there was a huge typo I just had to fix. The gas alleviated his anxiety not elevated! Ok, now I can sleep tonight..)

Last Friday's surgery went really well. We had to do a lot of waiting beforehand due to two pediatric emergencies but other than that, Forester did fabulously. He was put to sleep via gas before the IV was placed which alleviated a lot of anxiety and he had no pain when the IV was removed. Thanks for your prayers about that! He was a little sore when he awoke from surgery but morphine helped and he felt fine by the time we got home.  He hasn't had any pain meds since!  Not even tylenol. In fact, we went bowling on Saturday night to celebrate Micah's birthday and he was able to do that without any problem or pain. His stitches dissolve and we can remove his bandage tomorrow.
Micah had a wonderful birthday and everyone enjoyed dressing up for Halloween. Darth Maul (Forester) , Aniken (Micah) and the Ewok (Slade) looked great! Slade received one piece of candy and was practically running to the next house for more. Fun for all!
...And now onto Forester's 9th birthday on Sunday! (whew!)

*Here are some pictures from last weekend's events.  ...I've been struggling with blogspot & these pictures for hours. I'll have to post Halloween pix separately. Stand by...

waiting & waiting...
All done!


Baby Micah

Pinata loot!

Scooby Dooby Doo!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The day is almost here!

Tomorrow is Micah's 6th birthday!!  How can this be possible?! It is also a very special day because Forester will be having port removal surgery! YAY! Forester was very excited about this...until last night.  During dinner he mentioned something about after his port was out he wouldn't have to go to the hospital anymore.  I corrected him and said, "well,  you'll still have to go for blood labs from time to time and still have MRI's every 3 months for a while".  He was very upset. Removing the port to him meant it's all over. It was heartbreaking to see the realization on his face that this is not the case. Then began the anxiety about having to get stuck for those procedures and he said, while crying, "I do not want to get my port out!".  It broke my heart that this happy milestone has now created sadness and anxiety in him.  I held him while he cried for a while and then we talked it through and he feels better about things now. But, please pray for him that he will have peace and not be afraid of future hospital visits.
  At his last check up his weight was up to 66 lbs and his height was 4'4". Great news! But Pete and I have both noticed that once again his appetite has begun to decline.  He's only had a couple vomiting episodes this month which we think was related to eating too fast so that is a big improvement.  It really seems that we're controlling the nausea issues but he needs a boost in his appetite. The megace effect is gone. Less and less is sounding good to him. It's a fight to get him to eat breakfast and he brings most of his lunch back home in the afternoons. So, keep praying about that. Thanks. 

We'll keep you posted about tomorrow's surgery.  We still haven't heard what time the surgery will occur.  So, just say a prayer for our little guy when you wake up tomorrow.  :-) THANK YOU!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Another Update! :-)

On Friday we arrived at clinic early without allowing Forester to eat as is required to test his cortisol level. Testing his cortisol is  a simple blood test and it was added to the rest of his routine blood labs that were ordered. After they took his blood he was able to eat so we went downstairs, & brought up some food for Forester to eat in the clinic.  He proceeded to eat some eggs, grits, a biscuit, bacon and a pack of Nekot peanut butter crackers!  Now, before you go gettin' yourself all excited there is a bit of information I neglected to to tell you in my last post. About 2 weeks ago when Forester was barely eating, Pete & I decided to start giving him Megace again. This is an appetite stimulant that he has been given over the last year and a half when his weight has gotten too low. This stuff works but tastes disgusting. Anyway, we only had a little bit left so he received about 5 days worth. We called the clinic to ask them to call in a refill and they kinda freaked on us and said no. We were told that Megace is only to be used during chemo treatment and he can't have it anymore.  It turns out this drug can have some substantial side effects and it shouldn't be given unless absolutely necessary. Also, since Forester has been off of treatment for 3 months now they want to know why this is happening - not just treat the symptoms but find the root.  But, like I said this stuff works. For the last week or so Forester has been eating a block of cheese a day. I am not exaggerating. A BLOCK of cheese a day & snacking on other things throughout the day. Major improvement. But, I think we shot ourselves in the foot because at clinic they raved that Forester's weight was up 2.2lbs and rejoiced in watching him devour that breakfast! I kept mentioning that these things were related to the Megace but I'm not sure they heard me....but oh well.  The cortisol level came back not just normal but "great" and all of his other blood counts looked really good as well. For the 1st time in 18 months Forester's red blood cell count was at 11 (normal)! HAPPY!  I guess this means we're back at square one with the appetite stuff once the Megace effect wears off but I am thankful that his cortisol is normal and that his body is doing what it is supposed to be doing. Our new regimen will be Zofran & Zantac in the morning & Prevacid and Zyrtec at night.  Forester's blood labs did indicate seasonal allergies & that can contribute to stomach upset sometimes. So that's where we are on that.

Yesterday was MRI day and our little man did great. He was so patient as the wait was long and boring as usual. Not one complaint! Sedation and wake up went fine and then he headed back to school.  Seems so weird to have your child under general anesthesia in the morning and then studying at school in the afternoon, but I digress... We received a call today that the scan looks "fantastic" and we will talk about scheduling the port removal surgery at his next check up in October. WOW. We are thrilled beyond words!!! Thank you so so much for your thoughts and prayers for us.  We are so thankful for you and your love for our family.  And a huge thank you to some of God's angels here on earth, Staci McLain, Mary VonRosenberg, & John Fortney who helped in big ways yesterday so Pete & I could both be with Forester & hear news about the scans right away. God bless you!!

In other fun news, on October 1st Forester & our family will be attending another Braves game! Coach Glenn Hubbard asked Forester to come back and once again enjoy batting practice & some other fun stuff now that he is feeling well enough to really enjoy it. This man has been amazing to us and has such a servant's heart. Forester can't wait and neither can we!

Thank you again for your prayers and as always we'll keep you posted.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Update on Forester

Thank you for your prayers for us. Things have still been tough when it comes to Forester and food.  You all have asked several questions and given suggestions which we appreciate so much. I will try to answer some of your questions here.
It is difficult to explain exactly what is going on with Forester... Generally, he doesn't feel nauseated. Though frequently (at least once a day) he'll stop in the middle of eating something, spit out the food, gulp down some water & say "I can't eat anymore of that or I'll get sick".  But, then he may wander over to the pantry, pick out something else & start to munch - sometimes not.  The vomiting usually comes as a surprise. It's not like the instances above but just "all of a sudden" and a lot of times it's before he's even eaten anything.  I still describe Forester as being like a 1st trimester pregnant person with morning sickness.  If you've had it you know what I mean.  He's hungry. He decides he wants lasagna. I make the lasagna. He looks at it or maybe even takes one bite and says, "I don't think I can eat this. It doesn't look good/taste good to me. Can I have something else?" I say, "Ok, what else would you like?" I proceed to name & search for everything we have.  Sometimes we find something else and he eats it!  Sometimes we never find anything that sounds good and he complains that he's hungry but there is nothing "good" to eat.  Sometimes I make something else and then the exact same thing that happened with the lasagna happens with the next item and we do it all again.  I get exasperated and frustrated & I'm not very good at hiding it.  I know Forester feels bad & doesn't want to tell me that he "can't" eat what's in front of him. :-(
An example of a day of eating a week or so ago was this: a cup of dry Fruit Loops for breakfast, a mixed fruit cup for lunch, 2 bites of chicken & 2 bites of mashed potatoes for dinner, a couple handfuls of Doritos. That's it.  On occasion he'll have a day where he eats like a normal 8 year old boy. It's not predictable & not consistent so we can't really figure out why a normal day is normal.  He has quite an aversion to sweets so things like milkshakes or smoothies for breakfast, things we could sneak extra calories or protein into, just don't appeal to him.  So...it's a challenge.

Now, on to some good news. One of the leaders of a non-profit organization that helps cancer kids, called Courageous Kidz, emailed other moms to see if they had any insight to Forester's issues. One mom whose son also had Medulloblastoma recommended getting his cortisol level checked.  Hmmm.. A couple days later I had a really good 20 minute conversation with one of the nurse practitioners at the hospital.  She really listened to me as I explained what was going on and she also suggested having Forester's cortisol level checked. So, tomorrow morning we'll be doing that!  Regardless of the outcome, I am thankful that we are being heard and that something is being done to try and figure out what's going on. So, thank you for praying and  keep it up!

Forester will also have another brain MRI on Monday morning. Same routine as always - under general anesthesia, usually takes all morning & requires a lot of boring wait time for Forester.  Please be praying for a beautiful and clear scan report!!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Prayer Request For Forester

Forester has been doing really well! He is adjusting to school and life in the 3rd grade. Just a reminder that it is such a miracle that Forester is in the 3rd grade after missing half of 1st grade and half of 2nd grade due to cancer.  God is good! We've had a wonderful and normal summer and good check ups at the hospital.  In fact, we were told at his last visit that if his next MRI on Sept 13th comes back clear then we can schedule his port REMOVAL surgery! This is the port that was surgically implanted under his skin on his chest that has been accessed to administer chemo, fluids, blood transfusions, etc. And though it was a huge milestone for us when Forester reached the ends of his chemo treatment, I think for Pete and myself this is an even bigger one.  Having his port remain for a while has kind of been code for "let's wait and see if the cancer comes back - we may still need that." So, to remove it is a great confirmation that he is in the clear!  Please be praying for this scan on the 13th, that it will beautiful and perfect.
I'd also like to ask you to pray for Forester's appetite. According to his doctors he shouldn't still be having problems with vomiting and food aversions. But, he is. It seems he still has a random vomiting episode every couple of weeks. He is still taking Zofran once a day. He is still very particular about what he will eat.  It's a daily struggle and though it is small in comparison to everything else that has come our way, it is still difficult.  Everyone needs to eat.  Several times a day.  For me, this means some level of conflict or frustration several times a day.  In reality, Forester hasn't been eating much at all and is losing weight again. I am unsure of what to do about this on a daily basis. Will you please pray that God will grant me wisdom in this and an even temperment? And, also pray for Forester's system to balance back out so he can once again have a normal relationship with food?

I knew you'd say yes! :-) 

Thanks and love,

Friday, August 20, 2010

A little conversation with Slade (video)

Happy Friday! Slade doesn't talk much around others so here's a glimpse of her little vocabulary.

Click Here

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Bradburn Kids DANCE!

 I didn't have time to edit this & my camera is always shaky - sorry.  Thanks to Weezer for the soundtrack. Enjoy!

 Bradburn Kids DANCE
(click on the link above)

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Way to go, Pete.

Yes, Pete has done it again.  He has raised the bar and left other husbands around him cursing his name.  He took me on a SURPRISE trip for my birthday to NEW YORK CITY! The day of my birthday (July 15) Pete arranged for family members to watch our kids for the long weekend & we packed bags and drove to the airport.  I had no idea where we were going until we got our tickets!  Needless to say, it was the BEST BIRTHDAY EVER.  Pete spent months planning for this and many gave to make it happen. Of course, you know we could never afford a trip like this but thanks to frequent flyer miles and the amazing generosity of my wonderful mother in law (& her friend, Allie, & her apartment!!), we were able to go. We ate great food, saw great shows (Wicked & Jersey Boys), and walked and walked and walked. It was a wonderful time to just be together without the children/responsibility. :-) I am so blessed and so thankful.  Here are a few pictures from our trip.


Monday, July 26, 2010

Isaiah 43:2-3

For some random reason I decided to be someone else and just click on our blog as if I had never seen it before. Thinking, as I browsed through, "it's really hard to pretend not to be yourself you silly girl." But, I clicked on the "how it all began" link.  I don't think I ever have.  I read the post.  I don't think I've read since the day I wrote it.  And, I cried. I cried for that poor boy, those parents, that family.  I cried for me.
Believe me, I've done a lot of crying over the last year or so but this was different. I'm removed from it now. I can stand outside of it now and look in on those people. With my heart aching I think, "oh my gosh, how do you survive something like that?"
With Jesus, one day at a time.
We're standing outside of it now but sometimes I feel like we're still in the middle of it. God has done so much in our lives. I am so grateful for the healing in Forester's body, the peace that passes all understanding, and God's presence that has been so near.  But I'm realizing that though he's brought us through the fire, I still grieve that we, rather my child, had to walk through the fire in the first place.  It's like a tender bruise that won't heal.  Does that make sense?
Sometimes I'm just sad about it all. Not any less grateful, just sad. Today seems to be one of those days.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Ryan Olivia Swaney

I have a new niece! My sister, Katie, gave birth to a precious 7lb.15oz. baby girl on the morning of July 11th. She is so beautiful! Though Katie was past her due date, once labor began she went pretty quickly so unfortunately I didn't arrive in Atlanta in time for the birth.  But, Slade and I did get to see her when she was only a few hours old and got to stay over a couple of nights.  I got in some good Aunt Whitney snuggle time.  So far, Katie is feeling great and Ryan is doing wonderfully! Her older brother, Jack, who is not quite 2 doesn't seem to notice her much and seems to be adjusting to her quite well.  That may have something to do with Muzzy being there - who has been there since July5th! We are blessed with a great mommy who always helps so much when new grandbabies are born.  I'm sure she hates every moment. :-) Pop has put in a lot of help time too!
Thank you, Lord for sweet Ryan. Our family is blessed beyond measure!


I know a new post is long overdue!! Why is it that it takes me 2 hours to do a blog post? Needless to say it makes it tough to carve out the time.  We have had a fabulous last couple of weeks and I just need to unload my pictures to the computer so I can POST them!  Coming soon!...

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Video of Forester's Baptism! :-)


Question: What is Baptism?

Answer: A general definition for the word baptism is “a rite of washing with water as a sign of religious purification and consecration.” This rite was practiced frequently in the Old Testament. It signified purity or cleansing from sin and devotion to God. Since baptism was first instituted in the Old Testament many have practiced it as a tradition yet have not fully understood its significance and meaning. In the New Testament, the significance of baptism is seen more clearly. John the Baptist was sent by God to spread the news of the coming Messiah—Jesus Christ. John was directed by God (John 1:33) to baptize those who accepted his message. John’s baptizing is called “a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.” Mark 1:4 (NIV). Those baptized by John acknowledged their sins and professed their faith that through the coming Messiah they would be forgiven. Baptism then is significant in that it represents the forgiveness and cleansing from sin that comes through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Purpose of Baptism:

  • Water Baptism identifies the believer with the Godhead – Father, Son & Holy Spirit.
    “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Matthew 28:19 (NIV)
  • Water Baptism identifies the believer with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection. “When you came to Christ, you were "circumcised," but not by a physical procedure. It was a spiritual procedure--the cutting away of your sinful nature. For you were buried with Christ when you were baptized. And with him you were raised to a new life because you trusted the mighty power of God, who raised Christ from the dead.” Colossians 2:11-12 (NLT)
    “We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” Romans 6:4 (NIV)
  • Water Baptism is an act of obedience for the believer. It should be preceded by repentance, which simply means “change.” It is turning from our sin and selfishness to serve the Lord. It means placing our pride, our past and all of our possessions before the Lord. It is giving the control of our lives over to Him. "Peter replied, 'Each of you must turn from your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.' Those who believed what Peter said were baptized and added to the church--about three thousand in all.” Acts 2:38, 41 (NLT)
  • Water Baptism is a public testimony - the outward confession of an inward experience. In baptism, we stand before witnesses confessing our identification with the Lord.
  • Water Baptism is a picture representing profound spiritual truth:

    Death - “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20 (NIV) Resurrection - “We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the father, we too may live a new life. If we have been united with Him like this in His death, we will certainly also be united with Him in His resurrection.” Romans 6:4-5 (NIV)
    “He died once to defeat sin, and now he lives for the glory of God. So you should consider yourselves dead to sin and able to live for the glory of God through Christ Jesus. Do not let sin control the way you live; do not give in to its lustful desires. Do not let any part of your body become a tool of wickedness, to be used for sinning. Instead, give yourselves completely to God since you have been given new life. And use your whole body as a tool to do what is right for the glory of God." Romans 6:10-13 (NLT)
    Cleansing - “And this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also – not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” I Peter 3:21 (NIV)
    “But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” I Corinthians 6:11 (NIV)


Forester is being baptized today at 2pm! Our church goes out to the beach for a great celebration. Please pray for Forester,that he will have God's peace as he wades out into water with our pastors & that he truly understands what baptism means. Thank you!! It's a great day of celebration!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Hearing Test - Proof!

For those who are interested in seeing the "proof" that Forester has regained hearing in what was described as permanent loss, here are the actual results.

The shaded area represents normal, day-to-day hearing frequencies (e.g.,conversation, music, TV, etc).  The hand-written line that trends downward is marked by the audiologist and represents the beginning of hearing loss. You'll notice on the "After" graph that the hand-written line is further to the right now and passes through less of the shaded area than it did 6 months ago.

Though Forester still has some hearing loss in the high frequencies we are continuing to pray that God restores his hearing completely.  Not, just because we want Forester to be whole, of course we do.  But, because we truly believe that that is the kind of stuff God can and will do! We want YOU to see the good God we know and be encouraged!! I mean, He rocks. He totally ROCKS!

*if you're reading this via email, go to the blog to see a couple of updated pictures. The kids are growing up!  http://thebradburns.blogspot.com

Before (12/09)

After (6/10)

Friday, June 18, 2010

Video -Updated/Revised

I made some volume & info revisions per the request of others who would like to share this video. Please feel free to share it!!
What a difference a year makes (REVISED)

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Nothing is Impossible

Click HERE 
to see a great video of Forester.  I think you'll like it.
And if YouTube is giving you a hard time (not loading and playing the video) give it a minute and retry.  Not as fun to watch if it keeps starting and stopping.  If I could figure out how to put the video directly in the post I would.  Still learning...


*I'm having trouble getting this post to go out to sunscribers so I'm re-posting. Hope it works cause I have no idea why it isn't!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

It's a great day for good news!

I just got the most amazing text message from my husband and I can't stop crying and just saying "PRAISE YOU JESUS"!
Forester & Pete have been at the hospital today getting Forester's blood counts checked and also a hearing test. This is what the text said: Big IMPROVEMENT in Forester's hearing since his last test in Dec. The audiologist said to me four times, "I can't explain it. This is the opposite of what I expected to see and there's no medical explanation for it. This is amazing!"

God is healing Forester and HE is AMAZING!!  If you remember several months back I was very discouraged about Forester's hearing loss because I had prayed so hard and really believed that God was going to spare him from that. Please re-read that post here!  Leave it to my amazing and all powerful and all knowing Father God to do something that can't be explained by medicine and only be described as amazing and miraculous! And, it's documented!  That's the kind of God he is!!  We are thanking Him and full of joy and couldn't wait to tell you.  GIVE HIM PRAISE, YA'LL!!!


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The LAST Day

Today is Forester's very last day of chemo!! Two more pills and he's DONE!!  Woo-hoo!!

He'll have a brain MRI on June 23rd as well as hearing tests, liver tests, etc. this month. He'll continue to have MRI's every 3 months for the next year or so. If everything continues to look good 6 months from now, they will remove his implanted port and we will hope to hear the word REMISSION

Tomorrow starts a new day of freedom for Forester.  We REJOICE, we PRAISE and we THANK God!!  He has been with Forester and all of us every step of the way.  Our God is faithful in all circumstances!

With love & thanks,


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

DoDo The Great

Our family is very saddened as my grandmother, "Grand DoDo", passed away on Saturday.  She would have been 89 on the 23rd of this month.  Her body just started shutting down - her heart wasn't pumping efficiently and her kidneys began to fail.  Thankfully this began only a few short months ago and she was still feeling good and enjoying everyday life until very recently. I was privileged to be with her daily and help my mom and dad care for her these last couple of weeks.  As her kidneys began to shut down she began to become very swollen.  Her "Pray for Forester" bracelet on her arm began to cut off her circulation so we asked if we could take it off.  She said "no, I'll never take that off" and she hadn't since the first day she put it on & it was on when she died.  Precious!  We have it saved in a special place.  She loved her children, her grand children and great grand children with a passion.  She has lived with my parents for the last 4 years or so and passed away in the comfort of her own home and bed surrounded by loved ones.  She was amazing and we miss her so.  We are so thankful to know that she is completely whole and free with the Savior!

Obituary below.

Dorothy M. Slade

Dorothy M. Slade, 88, a native and long time resident of Evansville, Indiana, passed away Saturday, May 8, at her home in Seabrook Island, South Carolina, following a brief illness. 

Dorothy Slade, known as Dodo, Grandodo and Great Grandodo to friends and family, was born May 23, 1921 in Evansville to Ralph and Lillian Burchfield.  She graduated from Bosse High School and attended Indiana University, then supported the WWII war effort as a clerk in the rations office.  She later worked with her husband at Jack Slade Realty.

In 1943, Dorothy married John T. Slade and became mother to a son and daughter, and the adoptive mother of dozens of cocker spaniels and lhasa apsos — the couple shared a hobby of breeding and showing dogs.

Dorothy was a St. Mary’s Hospital Pink Lady and a volunteer at Little Sisters of the Poor.  She was an enthusiastic fan of University of Evansville basketball, Davidson College football, Atlanta Braves baseball and the NFL.  She was an avid bowler, bridge player and Scrabble player and worked the daily crossword puzzle in ink.  She was a lifelong member of St. Benedict’s Catholic Church, where she was baptized nearly 89 years ago.  She loved the ocean and spent the last four years of her life living beside it in her home near Charleston, SC.

She is survived by a daughter, Susan S. Brown of Seabrook Island, SC, and a son, Gordon B. Slade of Stone Mountain, GA.  “Grandodo” was dearly loved by her grandchildren: Parker Slade, Whitney Bradburn, Katherine Swaney, Brandon Slade and Forrest Goodyear-Brown.  She recently said that her favorite music was the voices of her great-grandchildren: Anna Slade, Madison Goodyear-Brown, Slade Bradburn, Sam Goodyear-Brown, Forester Bradburn, Jackson Slade, Micah Bradburn, Jack Swaney and Nicholas Goodyear-Brown.

She is also survived by her beloved sister-in-law, Isabelle Burchfield, by nieces Marty Slade Perlman and Ann McCutchan Osuch, and nephews John Burchfield, Dean Burchfield, Bryan Slade and Tom Slade. A nephew, David Carlton, died in 1972.

Dorothy was predeceased by her husband and by her sister, Betty McCutchan, and brother, Jack Burchfield.

A mass for Dorothy Slade will be said at St. Benedicts Catholic Church on Friday, May 15 at 9:00 a.m. with burial to follow at Oak Hill Cemetery.  The family will receive friends from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Alexander Funeral Home – East Chapel, 2115 Lincoln Ave. in Evansville.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions may be made to a fund that helps to pay medical bills for Dorothy’s great-grandson, who is being treated for a brain tumor: The Forester Fund, 114 Sugar Magnolia Way, Charleston, SC 29414, or  http://thebradburns.blogspot.com

Condolences may be made online at  http://www.alexandereastchapel.com

Monday, April 19, 2010

Forester's Medical Bills

Throughout this last year we have been SO blessed by your amazing generosity to us. So many care packages, gift cards, AMAZING fundraisers, and financial gifts. Thank you just doesn't do justice to how we feel. Because of you, we are not drowning in a sea of debt right now and that is a miracle in itself! In spite of this, our medical bills continue to come in and we continue to be challenged by this financial burden. And, we regularly encounter people who ask us what we need & how they can help us financially. So, we have added a Donate button on the top right of our website. If you feel led to contribute to Forester's medical bills (even if it's just $5.00!) please click on that button and it will take you directly to Paypal and Forester's fund. We thank you so much for your care and willingness to fight this cancer battle with us.  We are not alone and you are a part of our mighty army that is winning this war.  To God be the Glory!

We love you,
The Bradburns

Saturday, April 17, 2010

April Update

I've been working on a new post for quite sometime now and I believe I have "bitten off more than I can chew" as they say.  Lately we seem to be surrounded by a lot of difficult situations...my grandmother's health is declining, we lost one of Pete's best friends to cancer 2 weeks ago, some of our closest friends are dealing with a very fragile pregnancy with twins - one twin with Downs Syndrome & possibly other complications. Frankly, too many people I know have CaringBridge websites! Are you picking up what I'm puttin' down?  YUCK.  And again it begs the question WHY? So, I started a post about what I have learned in the last year or so about asking God that question.  It's not a small thing to try and put into words and I'm currently stuck due to my lack of communication skills and feeling completely inadequate to tackle such a question. But,  I'll keep working on it.  Meanwhile, it's been a month since I've updated you on Forester and I know it's overdue.

The last month has gone quite well.  We are back into the normal routine of school and homework, church and play, and even some normal weekend activities like golf with Daddy & Pop & Uncle Steve, and kicking the soccer ball in the backyard. Forester continues to go to physical therapy once a week to work on improving his balance and regain strength in his legs. He met all of his goals in physical therapy last month and was so proud to show me.  Things such as, 15 jumping jacks, & running on the treadmill! His therapist is very good and we are so pleased with the progress he is making.  We continue to see some side effects of his chemo like; random nausea/vomiting, fatigue, emotional ups and downs, depressed blood counts & loss of appetite.  These are minimal compared to what we were dealing with a few months ago but can still be stressful at times.  Our biggest concern at the moment is Forester's weight.  He's about 10lbs under weight and looks pretty skinny.  He just isn't eating much at all and still has what I describe as being like 1st trimester pregnancy morning sickness symptoms.  Something may sound good until he sees it and then he rejects it. Certain foods will sound good for a week or so and then he doesn't want it all at anymore. He'll take 2 bites of something and that's it. I know it must be so tough for him.  But, it can also be so frustrating for Pete and myself. Especially for me when I spend time cooking what he wants (in addition to what I've already made for dinner) and then he doesn't eat it.  Please pray for patience for us where food is concerned. 

At Forester's check up on Thursday his blood counts were really good - almost normal! Everything we heard was positive except he was put back on Megace, an appetite stimulant.  Pray that it increases his appetite and that he eats and gains weight! Again, in comparison to our worries a few months ago this is nothing and we are so thankful that this is our greatest concern at the moment. We are also so thankful that we are in the last 2 months of chemo! Is that a light I see at the end of this tunnel?? God is so good and YOU and your prayers have made all the difference. We are so thankful for you - that you care and that you pray. It is overwhelming and completely humbling.  Thank you and don't stop. :-)

Love, love, love,


Monday, March 15, 2010


Cancer can bring out the best and worst in people. It's really true. I've seen both sides. And, I have to say in the midst of the most trying year of our lives, my husband, Pete, has come through shining and he truly is the BEST!  Today is his birthday and I just want to celebrate him.  Though, I would never wish cancer on my child and I would take it away in a second if I could, I am thankful that I've been able to see more of who Pete is. (see how God can take even the hardest circumstances and use it for his good?!) To say that Pete stepped up is an understatement. His compassion and patience, his calmness and humor, his love for God and trust in Jesus have kept us all together.  He is a Godly husband and father, a hard worker and wonderful provider.  I am so blessed to call him my husband.  I love you, babe.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Prayers for Layla Grace's Family

 Layla Grace Marsh

Some of you already know this but the little girl, Layla Grace, who I referenced in my post a few weeks ago, passed away yesterday morning.  Unfortunately, her mom and dad spent the last two weeks watching Layla die and very slow and painful death.  So, while we all grieve with this family because of their loss, we can also rejoice in the fact that Layla is "playing with the angels" as her mom said.  She is no longer in pain, she is no longer stuck in a body overtaken by cancer.  She is free.  She is whole and she is in the most wonderful place - our minds cannot even fathom it!  But, Layla has 2 older sisters. One who is 9 and one who is 3.  Please pray for this family as they begin a whole new journey on a very lonely road called loss. No one ever wants to travel that road.  Especially when it's the loss of your 2 year old daughter.

If you've read this blog, you know I believe in prayer.  I believe our prayers make a difference.  I believe it's one of the greatest gifts we can give someone else at anytime we choose! Because, I believe God hears.  I believe He listens.  And, I believe he loves.  He cares deeply for His children - which includes me and you.  He hurts when we hurt and wants to comfort us.  So, I'm asking.  Would you please pray for this family? It only takes a moment and I truly believe your prayers can bring God's peace and comfort to them.

Some of you may ask: if God is God, if God loves us & desires to comfort us, & hurts when we hurt, why would he let poor Layla die of cancer? I am not a theologian and I'm almost afraid to even "go there" for fear of the judgement of those who are, but I will.  Just not now. I have Bible study in a few moments and don't have the time right now!  But, I will.  Because I, too, have asked this question. I'll be happy to share what I've learned.  Stay tuned...

Please pray.

All my thanks and love,

Monday, March 8, 2010

Cleaning house around here

I'm in the process of taking over the bradburnfamily@gmail.com account that is referenced on the sidebar of this blog.  When Forester was diagnosed last year some dear friends of mine set up this account and got things going.  As time has gone on this account was neglected. So, my sincere apologies if you requested to subscribe to this blog, or sent us a message or made a request and it was never tended to. I started trying to go through each email to figure out who had been added or replied to but there are over 500 emails & it's just too big a task.  SO, if you wouldn't mind, if you were one of those who did not receive a response will you please email again?  I have all my accounts going into one mailbox now and I promise I will get it and respond! If you would like blog updates to come to your email inbox, just send and email to bradburnfamily@gmail.com with Subscribe in the subject.  Thank you!


Saturday, March 6, 2010

Always good to hear good news

Official MRI results: "Looks beautiful".  :-)

We're enjoying a gorgeous day here in Charleston.  Hope you are having a wonderful weekend!