A Summer of Fun!

I’m not really ready, but it’s almost time to go back to school! Next week I find out who my new teachers will be and I will meet with the school nurse to go over my diabetes care. My mom has been busy getting my school supplies ready which include the normal binders and pencils, but also everything I need in case of a diabetic emergency at school: water bottles and ketone strips for highs, fruit juice and snacks for lows, extra test strips and batteries for my glucose monitor, needles, alcohol wipes, insulin pens… I’m trying not to think about all that, and instead, I’m getting ready for my 13th birthday and remembering all the great things I did this summer. We did ALOT!

A few days after school was over my sister, mom and I left to Florida for a 10 day vacation. We stayed at a resort in Disney World. This was our treehouse for 10 days:

treehouse deck

It had 3 bedrooms, a living room and a kitchen. The view from the deck was great, but we rarely sat out there because it was so hot and full of mosquitos!

We went to all four theme parks at Disney World: Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom & Epcot.

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Epcot

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Magic Kingdom

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Animal Kingdom

Animal Kingdom

Animal Kingdom

We also went to Universal Studios Florida & Universal’s Islands of Adventure. The Harry Potter lands were awesome. I think that was the best part of our trip.

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Hogwarts Express

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Since we were in Florida for 10 days, we had plenty of time to do other stuff besides go to amusement parks. For instance, at dinnertime we would take a boat from our treehouse to Downtown Disney and have dinner at the T-Rex Café or a fancy seafood restaurant.

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Boat Taxi from our Treehouse to Downtown Disney

out to dinner

Fulton’s Crab House

We also played miniature golf twice!

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Winter Summerland Miniature Golf

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Pirate’s Cove Miniature Golf

I think my mom’s favorite place to go was the 2 water parks. She was happy to relax all day and read.

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Typhoon Lagoon Wave Pool

But one of my other favorite day trips was when we went to Gatorland. I’ve never seen so many alligators in one place!

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Walt Disney World was not the only place we visited this summer. We also went to the Discover Science Center, La Brea Tar Pits, Birch Aquarium and LEGOLAND.

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It was a great summer, but now I have to start thinking about 7th grade. Just one week to go!

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School is Almost out for Summer!

no breaks

Only a week and a half left of school and I’ll be on summer vacation! Unfortunately my Type 1 Diabetes never takes a break. Sometimes I have easy days with no surprises, and other days I am really working hard to keep my glucose readings just right…

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This week was a busy one. I had Open House at school, so I had to rush home to get my homework complete and ate an early dinner to make it to the event on time. My mom built in enough insulin to cover for shaved ice that was going to be sold at the Open House. Sometimes trying to figure out how many carbs are in something that you haven’t made yourself is tricky. Exactly how much syrup did they add to the ice? Did I receive too much insulin or too little? It’s always hard to estimate.

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Then there are my super busy days when I am moving non-stop. On those days I start my homework right after I get home from school, eat an early dinner, go to drum lessons, come home and take a shower, go directly to a Boy Scout meeting, and then I’m back home just in time to get my long-acting insulin shot. Usually on days like this I tend to run low (my LOW glucose readings range from 40-70—and I’ve never had a reading below 40). Of course I always carry my diabetes kit with me—no matter what. My mom says as long as I plan for the day and have my medical kit with me, with snacks to help deal with my lows, I can be as healthy as anyone else.

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And now it’s time to plan for the next few weeks. I’m really excited about a year-end field trip with all-you-can-eat pizza and non-stop videogame fun, and a summer vacation beginning with a trip to Walt Disney World. I’ve got my diabetes kit and I’m ready to go!

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November 14th is World Diabetes Day

band

Today is World Diabetes Day and I will be selling these awareness bands from now until April 2015. All money will be donated to JDRF. The bands come in two sizes (adult and youth) and are $5 each. I hope you will help me raise money for research to find a cure for diabetes. ~Jonathan

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November is Diabetes Awareness Month

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There are a lot of myths out there regarding Type 1 Diabetes. So since November is Diabetes Awareness Month my mom and I thought it would be a good idea to share some facts about T1D. You can find these facts and other information about T1D at:

http://jdrf.org/about-jdrf/fact-sheets/type-1-diabetes-facts/

About T1D

Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is an autoimmune disease in which a person’s pancreas stops producing insulin, a hormone that enables people to get energy from food. It occurs when the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, called beta cells. While its causes are not yet entirely understood, scientists believe that both genetic factors and environmental triggers are involved. Its onset has nothing to do with diet or lifestyle. There is nothing you can do to prevent T1D, and—at present—nothing you can do to get rid of it.

Insulin Is Not a Cure

While insulin injections or infusion allow a person with T1D to stay alive, they do not cure the disease, nor do they necessarily prevent the possibility of the disease’s serious effects, which may include: kidney failure, blindness, nerve damage, heart attack, stroke, and pregnancy complications.

The Outlook for Treatments and a Cure

Although T1D is a serious and difficult disease, treatment options are improving all the time, and people with T1D can lead full and active lives. JDRF is driving research to progressively remove the impact of the disease from people’s lives until we ultimately achieve a world without T1D.

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It’s Halloween!

Today is Halloween and the end of October, but it’s also the beginning of my third year living with Type 1 Diabetes. Since my diagnosis in October, 2012, I have had over 3,000 insulin shots and about twice as many finger pricks. Tonight my mom talked to me about experimental therapy that JDRF is helping to fund that could someday help Type 1 diabetics like me. I hope it works, but for now my parents and I work hard to keep my glucose numbers in check and my A1C levels between 6 and 7. Of course I have my ups and downs, but I am healthy and happy and can’t wait to go trick-or-treating! Happy Halloween!

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New School

So it’s October, and I’ve been in middle school for three months now. The difference between middle and elementary school is that the food is better in middle school. Homework is a lot harder and there is a lot more. Since I have PE, I have to check my numbers twice a day at school. So far I am having fun and my favorite subject is science and PE. This is Middle School:

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Today is Earth Day!

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Today is my kind of day. I have always loved animals and nature, so today is the day to celebrate both! Tonight my family and I will spend time together by candle light and not use electricity between 7 and 8PM, just like we do during Earth Hour which was this past March 28th.

Dealing with diabetes everyday creates a lot of waste. Test strips, alcohol swabs, pen needles and insulin pens have to be disposed of properly, especially when there is blood involved. That’s a lot of plastic and a lot of waste! It’s important to me and my family to make sure we do what we can to minimize our waste in other areas.

  • We recycle paper, plastic, aluminum and glass
  • We always take reusable grocery bags to the market
  • I take a thermos with my ice water to school everyday (instead of taking a plastic bottle)
  • We have solar panels on our roof
  • We donate our time and money to the Surfrider Foundation (beach cleanup) and The Jacques Cousteau Society
  • We compost (that’s me in the picture composting what’s left of my breakfast… a banana peel)

Of course we could do a lot more, but at least this is a start. I hope you are helping to take care of our earth as well. It’s the only one we’ve got!

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JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes!

SOLD OUT bag details

This year I am looking to raise funds for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s Walk to Cure Diabetes, held April 27, 2014, in Ontario, California. My family and I will not be participating in the actual Walk this year, but we will still be making a pledge.  If you would like to contribute to my fundraising efforts you can help by purchasing grocery totes with my original artwork for $5.00 each. It’s easy…

  1. Log-on to my website: www.dinopetesjohn.com
  2. Select the JDRF page
  3. Select Click this link to the JDRF website
  4. Select the orange Donate button (upper right)
  5. Select the blue Donate Now button (middle)
  6. Select the blue Donate to a Walker  button
  7. First Name: Jonathan; Last Name: Torres; State: California
  8. Select my name and donate!

The totes are like the type you would buy at the supermarket to use instead of paper or plastic bags. They are large (14 ½ x 13 x 9), with a sturdy plastic board bottom to handle large loads.  Your bags will be hand delivered or mailed to you via USPS. All monies collected for the totes go directly to JDRF. I hope you can help!

Thank you for your support.

~Jonathan

actual bag

Oh, yeah…a special thanks to my mom’s book club, The Mindful Reader’s Book Club, for donating their 2013 member dues to my cause. JDRF is the only organization with a strategic research plan to end T1D. With generous contributions, like those from the Mindful Reader’s, Type 1 becomes Type none. Thanks again Mindful Reader’s!

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I’m officially a Boy Scout

Last night at our Cub Scout Pack Meeting I bridged from the Webelos to a Boy Scout!

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Dessert!

My mom made brownies for me tonight. I love them! I don’t always get this kind of a treat because it’s full of sugary carbs; almost 85 grams! That’s 6 units of insulin for me. Normally my entire meal is about 6 units. Sometimes my Type 1 Diabetes is a pain because I have to check my glucose numbers before I eat each meal, and I count every carb that I eat before I put anything in my mouth. But, my mom tries hard to make me feel like I’m a normal 11 year old that gets to eat what I want without thinking about carbs. I love brownies! image

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