Progress Updates & Photos
July 2, 2008
Thanks to Raymond Ramirez from Fox 26 News for making the matching
deal for Courtney with Mattress Mack, she now is the owner of a Sony
46 inch flat screen LCD Digital tv. The cost of the tv, on sale was
$1,999.00 and add on $499.00 for the extended warranty. After Mack
matched half of the cost Courtney finally paid a total of $1253.11.
That took up the whole amount of the Skydiving fundraiser ($700.00)
and the Putt Putt/Silent Auction Fundraiser ($500.00). We did not
want to make any other purchases deciding to save the $2,000.00 from
the San Antonio BBQ fundraiser to make all the additional purchases
for the room and restroom. There still needs to be so many things to
buy, sinks, ceiling fan, toilet, sheetrock, tile, and on and on.
Thanks to everyone who helped and participated with the fundraisers,
Mattress Mack and all who donated money, sponsored a skydiver, paid
their own skydiving fee's, bought Putt Putt tickets, donated silent
auction items, bid on items and to all Courtney's friends who give
their love and support. We love you all, we are blessed to have each
and every one of you in our lives.
My basketball from Mack
Me and Mattress Mack
Monday, June 2, 2008
This was the 4th work week-end on
Courtney's new room.
*Saturday's miracle worker team consisted of Barry Boggs, Rod
Sutton and my husband Manuel. They started early and worked
late. I don't know if we could ever re-pay these two gentlemen for
their hard work they are doing for Courtney. The day was filled with
the sound of saws and hammering as the three men worked framing up
the bathroom and adding a beam across the ceiling area for added
support. For those of you who don't know Barry Boggs, this man is in
such poor health that it is a miracle that he can hold up to work at
all. And God bless Rod, he has a heart of gold. I do believe with
all my heart that God is holding Courtney's little life in his
powerful hand and is touching everyone who she encounters. I can't
stop being amazed by all the wonderful people who are sent to us.
*Sunday proved to be another spectacular day in which I felt the
awesome presence of God. Barry and Manuel got an early start on the
framing of the closet area. Courtney's friends at the South Houston
Fire Dept. came through once more to answer our call for help. New
volunteer Fire Dept. Cadet, Vernon Bussell has graciously
volunteered to do the plumbing work for Courtney's room. The
hammering and sawing sounds were drowned out by the new sound of the
jack hammer. Vernon worked quickly and was finished with the jack
hammer by the time Courtney woke from her nap. As I went to the
kitchen and looked out the back door I was brought to tears as I saw
a little girl on the garage floor picking up the broken cement
pieces and putting them in a wheelbarrow. When I regained my
composure I went out to meet her and take a picture. Her name is
Heylie Bussell, she's the 7 year old daughter of Vernon, she wanted
to come over to help Courtney also. Later on in the afternoon when
she and her dad finished their work for the day, Heylie came inside
with her dad, she wanted to meet Courtney. Courtney was thrilled to
have Heylie next to her, Heylie read several books to Courtney. I
asked Courtney before she went to sleep tonight if she liked Heylie
reading to her, she raised her eyebrows and smiled.
*And the miracles continue....my husband's family all live in San
Antonio, several hours away from us. One of his sister's, Linda and
her husband Markie along with one of Manuel's brothers, Randy and
his wife Gloria came over for a visit. They arrived when Courtney
was taking her nap. After we greeted each other, Randy handed me
this huge card saying this was a little something they all had been
working on for Courtney. The card was hand made, decorated with
flowers and a photo of Courtney on the outside with the words 'we
wish you well'. The inside of the poster card was filled with
signatures and traced handprints. I didn't realize the significance
of the card until Randy handed us a huge stack of twenty dollar
bills. There was a total of $2,000.00
that my husband's family had earned having a BBQ fundraiser for
Courtney. I couldn't believe it, we didn't have any idea they all
had been planning this for Courtney. I was told that all my
husband's sister's, sister-in-law's, brother's, brother-in-law's,
niece's, nephew's and his mother along with their friend's,
businesses and community members from San Antonio had all joined
together to prepare and sell the dinners on Saturday for our
precious princess. I am so grateful to all these people, this was
such a wonderful thing for them to do to help Courtney.
We don't know yet if we will use the money for the building
materials or to take to Mattress Mack for the Gallery Furniture
project since we still have to buy so much for Courtney's room. I
will make a list of things we have spent money on for the project so
far soon. There will need to be plumbing fixtures, toilet,
windows, doors, insulation, sheetrock, ceiling fan, and light
fixtures purchased and the list goes on and on.
*I hope to find out more today about the other fundraising events I
hope to do, I will post another update as soon as I find out more.
I really hope we can get the
skydives donated soon so the volunteers for that event will have
ample time to get their sponsors involved. Please help us with this
if you can. Please keep Courtney in your prayers that she will
remain well for her upcoming ballet recitial.
San Antonio Relatives
Courtney and her new friend, Heylie
Thursday, May 29, 2008
While we were in the hospital my husband Manuel
and Courtney's Occupational Therapist Dawne Sweet met with Bruce
Monroe from Mobility Headquarters. I think they have everything
worked out for the lift. The past two week-ends have been really
hard on the guys with the heat and the very hard job of replacing
almost all the overhead joists and rafters. The plan was to replace
two of the rafters in the beginning then it was discovered that
almost all of them would have to be replaced. That second week-end
Rod Sutton worked with Manuel both days and Justin worked several
hours also. Manuel's good friend Barry Boggs joined in on the hard
work that Sunday.
This past weekend was the third week-end since the project began,
and it was Manuel, Barry and Rod working for both Saturday and
*Next weekend the framing for the walls will begin.
We are in desperate need of a plumber
now to start the work for the
bathroom plumbing. We had hopes that Daniel Olivo from the South
Houston Fire Dept. would be able to get someone for us but I have
not heard back from him. I sure wish we had someone to help design
the bathroom. I am so afraid we will make a mistake and not do what
is best for Courtney so she can get in and out of the bathroom
without any problems.
*We have one month that Gallery Furniture will match our donations
we raise for purchases we need for Courtney's room. We need to get
busy to maximize this wonderful opportunity that Mattress Mack has
offered to us. Thanks to our new friend, Raymond Ramirez from Fox
News for setting up the benefit for Mack to match the donations for
Courtney. Sue Ann, Courtney's speech therapist has offered to sell
things for Courtney at her garage sale in about two weeks down in
Seabrook. If any of you have some nice things that you would like to
donate for the garage sale you may drop them off at our house.
*I have contacted the skating rink near our home and am waiting to
hear back from the owner about a fund raiser there. I am hoping
the owner will donate an evening during the week for an event and
all the proceeds will go to the Gallery Furniture benefit project.
*I also am waiting for the owner of the Putt Putt in Webster to get
back with me about a golf tournament.
*One of my idea's for a unique fundraiser, which I am calling around
about is for a skydive business to donate several skydives, then I
could get some key people to dive for donations for Courtney. I
would need to ask the people we know with the best chances of
earning more from sponsors. I think one person from the school
district, one from the Fire Dept. and at least three others. I do
believe in miracles so lets see if this will turn out to be another
one for Courtney.
me via e-mail or call me if you have any suggestions or idea's.
We all have the same goal, to do what is best for Courtney, to
benefit her health, happiness and life in some way. Thank you all
so much for "Caring for Courtney".
Saturday, May 10, 2008
The volunteers arrived early then started tearing out the old
sheetrock and insulation in the two car garage. By 11:00 am they
were tired, sweaty and hungry. I thought they might enjoy something
cold so I had prepared an assorted fruit/dip tray and a veggie/dip
tray along with assorted sandwiches with chips. After a short break,
they were back to work again. At 3:00pm, as the Miracle Team
Volunteer's were finishing up, South Houston Fire Fighter Capt.
Daniel Olivo dropped by to see how things were coming along and to
say hi to Princess Courtney. He's a funny guy, Courtney smiled at
Daniel with his sun glasses on. We love all Courtney's Fire Fighter
We want to say thank you to Rod Sutton and Joey Vestal from the PISD
Air Conditioning Dept. and Justin Sharum from PISD Maintance
Dept. for giving up your Saturday, helping make Courtney's new room
happen. We also want to say thanks to Republic Waste for their
generosity, donating the use of one of their waste containers for
all the old building materials from the garage. This saved $500.00
of the money that you all donated, sold raffle tickets or paid for
admission to the dinner/dance for Courtney.
Friday, we will be having a representative come out from Mobility
Headquarters to give us advice about the overhead hoist system that
we want for our princess. Next work day will be Saturday, May 17,
2008, with plans to replace the broken rafters in the ceiling that
support the roof.
Please pray for Courtney tomorrow, she goes to the pedi surgeons
office to have her g/j tube replaced. The doctor said she will be in
a great deal of pain, he will only be using a topical ointment to
deaden the area.
Thanks to the generous support
from everyone, we have reached our goal of $4,000.00 to begin the
renovation of the garage in to a bigger room with a wheelchair
accessible bathroom for Courtney. We will have to check and see how
much one of those large waste containers are and have one delivered
to leave on site for all the old materials that will be removed.
We are planning for Phase 1-The
to begin on Saturday
After the bathroom is added and the existing washer, dryer and
hotwater heater are enclosed, the room will not be as big as we
would have wished for but it is going to be so much better for
Courtney with her own door to the outside for a fire escape and her
own bathroom. Presently we only have one bathroom for our entire
family to share down stairs. The ideal situation would have been for
our whole house to be remodeled for access for Courtney with all the
doors widened and such or maybe an entirely new wheelchair
accessible home with all new a/c duct work with all the new home
benefits to fit our entire family. We are still making miracles
happen for Courtney with this room, she will have a lift to carry
her to the bathroom and to help Candace pick Courtney up to put her
in her wheelchair/stroller. Our little miss is getting to be so big
and long, 46 lbs. and 46 inches long, that it is getting difficult
for Candace to lift her safely. I plan on updating as we go along
with all the details. My husband did say that we have some
volunteers from PISD to help, I only know one so far is the
wonderful Rod Sutton, I will list the others names on the " New Room
Miracle Team" as I find out.
If you can help in any way please contact