Monday, March 31, 2008

Two Amazing Birthday Girls & Bon Voyage to Magda

Tomorrow is Karen's Birthday (yes, she's an April Fool's baby!) - please join us in Peggy's room at noon for a lunch celebrating the AMAZING Karen! Wooo hooo!

And Wednesday is Marvel's Birthday - please join us in Peggy's room at 2pm for a party celebrating the AMAZING Marvel!

By the way, Karen knows about her party, but Marvel doesn't know about hers - that is, unless, she reads the blog between now and Wednesday! Marvel, if you are reading this - SURPRISE!!!

In other news, Madga leaves to go back to Poland tomorrow night. Can't believe she's leaving already, we'll sure miss her. However, she promises she'll be back - she loves it here! Bon Voyage, Magdalena!

A Note From Peggy About Using the Spellboard

Peggy spelled this out for us to post on the blog:

"I am having trouble spelling. But I believe I can help. I love you all and I have some ideas:

Please slow down and give me more time between boxes.

Get both numbers right before continuing. Ask if the letter is correct before continuing. Ask if the letter is correct before writing it down.

Try to write out only letters that have been confirmed.

Make sure that the board is level with my eyes.

If people are confused about which box I'm looking at first, ask "Are you looking at box ___ first?"

Friday, March 28, 2008

Earth Hour

Hey all, did you know that tomorrow (Saturday) millions of people around the world are joining together to make a statement about climate change by turning their lights off for an hour. It's called Earth Hour. Earth Hour is on March 29 from 8 - 9 p.m. local time. So far 25 cities around the world are taking part, including Atlanta, Chicago, Phoenix and San Francisco in the U.S.

Not to get preachy, but global warming is one of the greatest threats the world has ever faced. Our continued reliance on electricity sourced from coal-fired power stations is causing a dramatic increase in the Earth’s temperature, resulting in rising sea levels, an increase in drought and severe storms, and massive changes to the environment we all rely on to survive.

For example, if the greenhouse reduction achieved in last year's Earth Hour in Sydney (where this event originated) was sustained for a year, it would be equivalent to taking 48,616 cars off the road for a year.

As caregivers, parents, island residents, humans, our world can get so small and focused. I think it is important to step back often and look at the larger picture of the earth and all its people and the generations to come.

Find out more and sign up for Earth Hour by visiting and join the movement!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Photo of Leslie's Baby Bump!

Here are some photos from Leslie. She says she'll keep sending the photos so we can watch that belly grow!

Doc Visit Report

Peggy had her doc visit late Tuesday afternoon. Here is the report:

Peggy says that she feels like her left eye has discomfort, as if the pupil is bigger and more sensitive. Dr. D checked it out and said that the pupils are equally reactive.

Peggy says that both stints in her ears have fallen out and so her hearing is very muffled. She would like to make and appointment with the ear doc to get the stints reinserted (because Peggy does not use the muscles in her jaw, her Eustachian tubes in her ears have collapsed. We keep them open with little stints). Dr. D is aware and said that he will come by to check it out and then make and appointment if necessary.

Peggy says that there is occasionally light blood during suctioning. Dr. D didn't respond to this issue, but they always tell us that this is normal and most likely due to all the activity she has had (getting up in the chair, etc.).

There was some bacteria found in the UTI test that Peggy took recently. As I understand it, there is a Rx ordered for her. We have also been doing 30cc prune juice mixed with 30cc cranberry instead of blueberry since cranberry juice can help/prevent UTI. We are keeping the cran juice in the office fridge. Maybe we should move the juices to the same fridge...I'll leave it up to you guys.

Dr. D advised Peggy to elevate her coccyx every few hours to relieve pressure there. Peggy says that her coccyx has been sore.

Peggy says she still is having hallucinations even at 10mg of oxydose. Furthermore, the 10mg is not managing the pain as well, but Peggy has been requesting only 10 to see if it helps with the hallucinations, which it doesn't. Dr. D didn't have any recommendations at this time. Peggy will let us know how much oxydose she would like. The minimum should be 10mg. Please note anytime Peggy indicates that she is having a hallucination and the time/circumstances of the occurrence.

Peggy says her mood this week has been GREAT!

One more note, we are switching most of our over the counter and hopefully Rx meds to a new pharmacy called Pacific Health Inc. They were recommended by our awesome HMSA case manager, Wade. I can order meds via email and they deliver. They have great prices and are so nice. Yay! This will hopefully take much of the burden off of Elroy who has been picking up/purchasing most of Peggy's meds all around town!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

It's a Girl!!!

We have wonderful news to share! Our dear Leslie (Peggy's biological daughter whom she was reunited with just last year) is pregnant! She is due with a baby girl in July. Peggy is so excited to be a grandma once again. Leslie sent a book to Peggy called "For My Grandchild: A Grandmother's Gift of Memory" for Peggy to fill out for her granddaughter on the way. Please feel free to help Peggy with this project when you're on shift - she is very excited about it and loves what an amazing gift this will be for Leslie, Stuart, and the baby. Hooray! Congratulations, Leslie and Stuart!

Photos from Easter

Bet you all didn't know that the Easter Bunny is also a trained nurse. He's great at the yankaur and a whiz with the spellboard. Easter only comes once a year and a bunny's gotta pay the bills!

Hope everyone had a great Easter. Ours was fab! A perfect Peggy party - great food, great vibes, great fun! We started a new Chun party tradition - face painting! It was a huge hit and so fun for the kids (and adults). The Nuuanu mist didn't stop us from doing an egg hunt - we sent them off in 3 tiers: first the toddlers, then the older kids, then finally the biggest kids to finish off the hunting. The food was delicious and the wine was flowing. It was very easy, very pleasant, and definitely one of the best Easters yet!

You can see all of our photos from the event if you click the link below. There is a great group shot of everyone - they grumbled when I made them do it, but I know they are happy now that we have it forever! You're welcome, Team Easter 2008! Ha!

Photos on Shutterfly

Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy St. Patty's Day!

Clearly, I'm catching up on all my blogging! Hope everyone is having a great GREEN day today. Thought we'd share these photos of our little Leprechaun Sawyer and Peg!

We have just a few medical updates and random tidbits of info...first of all, Cathy came by today and we were going over Peg's vitamins. We suspect that Peggy may have on occasion been getting her multi-vitamin twice a day. To avoid any further confusion, we have decided to pre-pour her multi with her other meds. HCA will be in charge of this as usual, so we are just removing it from the basket of supplements given by the private hires. As I understand it, this basically leaves COQ10, Milk Thistle, and Alpha Lipoic Acid to be given during the day.

I spoke to Ty last week and I forgot to mention on the blog that she says that it is OK for us to give Peggy the Tobradex ointment as often as needed. We should be using this only if acute redness develops and let's limit it to no more than once an hour. You'll see that we have recently gotten some Tobradex drops, this was a mistake and we have found that the ointment works better since it doesn't fall out of her eyes as easily. However, in a pinch, the liquid form is better than nothing.

Cathy has been taking a couple of urine samples since there is a possibility that Peggy may have a UTI. We are waiting to get results, until then there really is no change in protocol.

Peggy's eyes have been working great this morning. She has been working on her speech for WCC coming up this Wednesday. Indy and I made a little green (and organic) cake for St. Patrick's Day today, so we've been munching on that and hanging out. Lisa, Marvel, and Judy Moody all came in with no green on, so they all got pinches!

The Father Damien Unveiling

Last Friday's big event was so wonderful! Some of the highlights of the day included a standing ovation for Peggy in the Senate, the Holy Trinity children singing Josh Grobin's "You Raise Me Up" to Peggy, the look on the children's faces when the painting was unveiled, selected children reading their heartwarming essays about Peggy and the project, Gary Secor blessing the painting, Terrence Knapp dressed as Father Damien doing a dramatic reading, Christine and Wally representing the Peg's Legs, special appearance by Mrs. Aiona, Representative Gene Ward presenting a framed certificate to Peggy, the beautiful mele led by Sean Tiwanak (Lolo was one of the beautiful vocalists), Yvonne Elliman and crew singing their magic, Magda and Reke enchanting us with the song they wrote for Peggy, Shelly and Magda's speeches, the closing by Principal Sister Rose, the list goes on and on. My personal favorite moment was Eric speaking for his mom, impressing us with his presence and his heartfelt appreciation for his mom's work, Shelly, Magda, the children, and me too! I'm a lucky woman - he is the man of my dreams :)

I should also mention that Thursday's "soft unveiling" and blessing here at the house was another fabulous event. The house was just bubbling with love and excitement, not to mention GREAT FOOD!

Thank to all of you who helped make this moment happen. It is so amazing to see this project come to fruition. I feel so privileged to be "behind the scenes" watching it all unfold. I speak from a unique vantage point and I have witnessed first hand that this painting is the result of so much devotion, so much generosity, and so much love.

Below is a clip from KGMB and also some photos.

KGMB News Video Clip

Photos on Flickr of Peggy on the Senate floor and the unveiling

Peggy at Windward Community College this Wednesday!

Please join us at WCC this coming Wednesday March 19, 12:40 – 1:20 p.m., Hale Akoakoa, Room 105. Peggy is the keynote speaker for the WCC National Women's History Month series. The theme for this year is "Women's Art: Women's Vision". They will be first showing the HPU documentary, "To Peggy with Love", then Peggy has prepared a few words that I will be sharing for her. To read more about the event, please see the article below that was posted in the advertiser:


Posted at 10:52 a.m., Thursday, February 28, 2008

Peggy Chun to speak at WCC's Women's History Month series
Story submitted by Bonnie Beatson

"Women’s Art: Women’s Vision" is the theme for National Women’s History Month. Windward Community College will celebrate Women's History Month with a series of inspiring speakers: Keynote speaker artist Peggy Chun, Hawai‘i International Film Festival founder Jennette Paulson, musician/entrepreneur Millicent Cummings, and tattooist Tricia Allen.

Audiences are invited to participate in discussions with the distinguished speakers. All events are free, open to the public and located at Windward Community College in Hale ‘Akoakoa 105. WCC is located at 45-720 Kea‘ahala Rd., in Kane‘ohe.

Keynote Speaker: Peggy Chun

Wednesday March 19, 12:40 – 1:20 p.m., Hale Akoakoa, Room 105

View “To Peggy, With Love,” a film about Peggy’s life, and listen to her words with a little help from her friends. Peggy Chun is known for her beautiful and often whimsical watercolor art. Now fully paralyzed by Lou Gehrig’s disease, Peggy captures the spirit of aloha in her paintings and thrives on sharing her love of the islands (and life!) with the world. These days, with only her eye movement unaffected by the disease, Peggy now paints digitally with the help of a computer.

“After all,” says Chun, “you don’t paint with your hands, you paint with your heart.”

This is Windward Community College’s forth year of presenting women speakers important to Hawai‘i and the nation. Women’s History Month events are sponsored by WCC’s Faculty Staff Development Committee.

For more information, contact Kathleen French at 236-9223 or at The URL is

Join us for Easter this Sunday!

Come one, come all! It's Easter Time - Peggy's favorite celebration! Please join us for our annual potluck Easter gathering. We will have an Easter Egg hunt and face painting for the kids at 3:30 and we're shooting for a 4 or 4:30 dinner. Here is the link to the evite invitation. If you can join us, please add yourself if you are not yet on the evite list, so that we can get a head count and you can let us know what you are bringing!

Click here Easter Evite Invitation

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Nurse Eric the Hero!

We had a little excitement last night. We got a call from Nurse Eric at 1:30am because the power went out at Peggy's house and he could not get the generator started. I sent my Eric over to the house to help. Magda got up and comforted Peggy while Nurse Eric and Elroy worked on the generator. Well, even with my Eric's help, they could not get it going.

Eric had Peggy on the battery right away when the power went out, so the vent had power, but the real problem was Peggy's bed! Without electricity, her air bed collapses around her! HCA was alerted and Cory was ready to send Peggy to the hospital if we couldn't get the generator going since we really don't know how much time we have on that external battery (should be 4 hours, could be less) and she was really concerned about Peggy being in a lot of pain without her mattress inflated.

So they just waited for hours for the power to come back on. While they were waiting, Nurse Eric got out his tools and started messing with the generator. Now, get this - then he took the spark plug from his car, put it in the generator and got it running! How awesome is that? He's a total MacGyver! They were able to put plug Peg's bed in and get her comfortable. Then, the power came back on finally around 4:30am.

I want to say a big thanks to Denise from HCA, who also ran her inverter over to Peg's house when she found out the generator wasn't working. She wanted to avoid having to send Peggy in to the hospital, so she drove over to the house at 3 in the morning. But by the time she got their, MacGyver Eric had already got the generator running.

Elroy is supposed to be picking up a new spark plug today. I hope Eric plans to install it on his shift tonight since I didn't even know that generators have spark plugs. In fact, I don't think I even know what a spark plug looks like.

Well, that's our hero story of the day! Yay, Eric! We are so impressed and so lucky to have you. Elroy, Magda, and the 2 Erics handled this crisis with such grace and calm. Thanks, guys!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

This Thursday at 5:30pm

We would like to invite the Peg's Legs to a private "soft unveiling" of the Father Damien mosaic this Thursday at 5:30pm at Peggy and Elroy's. Be there to help us celebrate and bless the painting before it goes to the Capitol on Friday and is unveiled to the public.

We hope you can join us on Thursday to celebrate this accomplishment with Peggy. We are so happy for her, Magda, Shelly, and the Children. How amazing to see this special project come to fruition.

This party is also a "Bon Voyage" party for our beloved Magdalena, who will be returning to Poland April 1. We are so grateful for her work on this project and will miss her so much. Please help us honor her for all that she has done and wish her well as she embarks on her next adventure!

This will be potluck. Please call me or email me if you have any questions.

We hope you will also all join us at the Capitol on Friday. The mural will be unveiled in a ceremony at the State Capitol at 12:45 p.m. March 14, with readings and music, after a proclamation commending her is read on the Senate floor. It will be a wonderful chance to meet all the children who spent so many hours painting those little squares for Peggy! It will be a special day, one not to miss.

Coming Up for Air!

This past weekend's sale was AWESOME!!!!!! I am still reeling from all the excitement and success. I am just SO grateful for SO much - there are so MANY blessings to be thankful for...the people that brought in piles and piles of yard sale donations (including some REALLY valuable stuff!), the people who donated goodies for Kat, Pono, & Ryan's Bake Sale area (that did VERY well), the people that spread the word about the sale, the people that helped us sort, the people that helped us set up and price, the people that gave up their weekend to work the sale, the people that came to shop and donate, the people that helped us clean up and bag everything up for United Cerebral Palsy, the list goes on and on and on and on...

Because of all of the help of all these amazing people, we were able to raise enough to get us by a few more months...we were able to buy us some TIME, which is exactly what we need. Time. Time with Peggy. Time for Peggy.

Thank you to all of you that helped. I keep getting asked if I'm tired after the sale and the truth is that I'm not. That may sound crazy, but the reason that I'm not tired is that we had so much help! It really felt pretty low impact with so many hands sharing the workload. Plus, I feel so much relief to know that we can pay our bills for a while, this gives me so much emotional energy. My heart is swimming with gratitude, I don't even have the words to express how truly blessed we feel.

Peggy had a blast this past weekend. She was up in the chair Friday, Saturday, Sunday with a "Not For Sale" sign on her. She loved seeing everyone, checking out all the cool stuff for sale, talking with customers. Not surprisingly, she was tired yesterday and today. Her eyes haven't been working that great these past couple days.

She had a short doc visit today and Dr. Davis mainly wanted to look at her eye movement. He did a short eye exam, asking her to look right, look left, etc. Hanna was there for the visit and said that it seemed to take Peggy quite a while to move her eyes in the requested direction. She made a good point that we might all need to be giving Peggy more time to get from one box to the next. This is probably the reason that we've been getting a lot of repeat letters, we might not be giving Peggy enough time to move her eyes.

Did you guys see the article about the sale in Monday's Honolulu Advertiser? If you missed it, here's the link:

Visit Friends Turn Out to Help Artist Chun

They also just posted a note about Friday's unveiling of the mosaic. Here is the link to that:

Visit Ailing Peggy Chun's Damien mosaic unveiled

I'm going to leave it at that for now. I will be posting another blog post in a moment with more information about the Father Damien Unveiling.

Thanks again everyone - what a fabulous weekend we had! And the excitement just keeps on coming...what's next...Father Damien, Easter, Rome? Phew, I need a nap.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Peggy's Eyes Better

As the day went by, Peggy's eyes got better. Lolo kept her eyes patched throughout the day and kept giving her PM gel which seemed to help things tremendously. By the time Evan from Archinoetics (brain wave guy) came for a meeting in the afternoon, Peggy was able to spell out some words. She seemed way more alert and responsive when I left today than she was this morning.

We had a lot of helpers today...tons of people in and out. Jim Franklin came by and sang in Peggy's room (with Magda, Betsy, and Andy doing back up vocals!). We had a lot of people dropping off great stuff. Too many fabulous people to name! Kat came by to help and little Sundae showed off his new "puppy cut"! Too cute! Donna Sullivan was sorting and tagging ALL DAY! She was still there when I left!

I had to leave because Sawyer had a huge meltdown. He was crying so hard he puked right in front of some visitors that Evan brought by. Not cute. Sawyer and Indy are just a little under the weather and I'm fighting whatever they have. But tomorrow I WILL BE FINE. I will be fine. I will be fine.

By the way, Karen left early today to go see her NEW GRANDBABY! Her daughter, Chas, just had another baby girl (they already have 2 boys and 1 girl). Congratulations!!!

Peg's Eyes, Doc Visit, Father Damien Unveiling - save the date!

We're having a hard time with Peggy's eyes today. All morning it has been difficult to tell whether she is awake or asleep. We can barely get a yes or no. It seems as if she is trying to communicate, but is having a hard time. Peggy had her doc visit today, but we definitely couldn't get the new doc visit form filled out (for future doc visits, you can find the form I created in the top plastic drawer beneath the white phone).

Dr. Davis did the visit and looked at Peggy's eyes. He was able to see some movement. He told us to just keep trying to communicate, be patient, and he'll check in again tomorrow. Throughout all of this Peggy's heart rate has remained quite low (53 or 54) which leads us to assume that she is not highly agitated or anxious about her eyes right now and that perhaps she is feeling more tired than usual.

The sale preparation is going well. We have got some amazing stuff piling up and lots of people have been dropping by, helping is going to be AWESOME!!!

I have some very exciting news about the Father Damien project! Magda is just about finished and the unveiling has been set for next Friday, March 14th, at 11:30am at the state capitol. They will be doing a proclamation first on the senate floor and then it will be unveiled shortly after. More info to come - but please save the date!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Sorting Sorting Sorting

We walked in this Monday morning to find piles of contributions for the sale in the living room! Yay! We have been so blessed with so many wonderful things for the sale. Keep 'um coming! We have posted the ad on Craigslist, The Honolulu Weekly, and the Honolulu Advertiser, so we're anticipating a big turnout. Eric is doing a run on Wednesday to pick up some pick furniture, TVs, etc. that have been donated to the sale. Karen has been sorting and organizing all day. She is so awesome.

Peggy is excited for this weekend. She's been spelling away with Lisa today. Lisa is doing a 12 hour shift (yikes!) since Marvel had to take care of some family stuff. Cathy is here right now to cauterize some granulated tissue around her trach.

I sent the March Newsletter out - what do you think? Our web designer, Daniel Gannaway, helped me lay it out - he is so good! I'm really excited about this new communication tool.

We spoke with Robyn Buntin Gallery today (the one on Beretania). Kat had seen on their website that they have an original Peggy Chun titled "Mango Cat" which is an image of Bug in a mango tree. They are selling it for $1200 which is out of our price range, but they did let us know that we can scan it so that we can add the print to our inventory since it is a "lost" image that was never scanned. Exciting!