Off the Dial

The pump on the fritz

All of the profits from my new book, I Can’t Cook, But I know Someone Who Can, will benefit Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation of Charlotte.  It’s a small way you can help a great cause.  My little boy has type 1 diabetes and every once in a while we get a reminder of exactly why we need a cure.

Earlier this month, Slade and I took our longest vacation without our children ever.  We’ve gone away for a couple of nights before, but this was our first week-long trip by ourselves since January 2001 (not that I’m keeping track).  Our ten year anniversary is this year, and we’d originally thought about going to Europe.  Didn’t want to be that far away, in case of an emergency, so instead of Southern Italy, we decided on South Carolina.

We had a wonderful week.  Spent several days at the Sanctuary at Kiawah Island.  Played two rounds of golf at the Ocean Course there.  Wow.  We’d played it about nine or ten years ago, but they’ve made some improvements – which you wouldn’t think were possible.  I got an eagle!  Knocked it in from 170 yards on the par 4 #13.  Whoo-hoo!   

Went to Charleston for a night at the beautiful Market Pavilion Hotel.  They have a rooftop pool and bar with some food service.  We’d planned on going out in the city that evening, but with an amenity like that, there was no need.  Really enjoyed it and spent the next day shopping. 

We’d planned to end the week with two nights at Ballantyne Resort, closer to home to go to the book launch Saturday, September 13th.  We’d just checked in when the phone rang.  It was my mom, at home with the kids.  Benny’s pump wasn’t working.

They’d had a pretty quiet week.  An hour or so after we left, Benny’s button came out.  (click here for more on what that means)  They replaced it, which isn’t fun, but my mom and brother-in-law got it done.  This time was different.  The insulin pump has a little display screen. It looks like this.  It wasn’t lit at all and it didn’t seem to be working.  After a few minutes on the phone, it was clear we needed to go home.

Less than an hour after we checked in, we were on our way out.  Same bellhop, same valet.  See you next time!  Benny’s blood sugar was good, even a little on the low side (85) so we weren’t too worried about giving him insulin right away.  Without the pump, though, we were back to shots.  No fun.

Benny was pretty upset.  Slade and I worked together to give him one shot at bedtime.  He needed another over night (setting my alarm for 3am to check him – that was fun).  We gave him mostly protein and few carbs in the morning, hoping the new pump would arrive before he needed another shot.  When the UPS man rang the doorbell at 10:30am, you’ve never seen a happier kid.  "No more shots, mommy!"

Animas makes the pump and they are terrific.  Still not sure what went wrong, but we called them at 6:30pm Friday and got the new pump 10:30 Saturday.  That’s some pretty amazing customer service. 

We were disappointed to cut our vacation a little short, but that’s no big deal.  What makes me mad is seeing my son so upset.  It just breaks your heart to hear your little boy crying, knowing you have to give him the insulin he needs, even though he’s scared the shot will hurt.  We were up to 6 shots a day before the pump, but he hasn’t even seen a needle in more than a year and he’s not used to it anymore.

So we’re back pumping and back to normal.  Or at least what normal is for us!

My Book!

Stacey_simms_book_cover_2 I feel like I’m in a very strange place right now.  My book is coming out  next Saturday, September 13th.  Of course, I’m beyond excited and definitely nervous but it’s a strange pause as I wait for the release date.

It’s been an amazing year – I only had the idea for this book in July of 2007.  It’s called I Can’t Cook, But I Know Someone Who Can.  It’s a cookbook, but with more than just recipes.  I like to say it’s a tell-all collaboration between twenty-five of Charlotte’s greatest chefs and one of our city’s worst cooks – me. 

Along with the 70 recipes and techniques from the chefs, I’ve written essays about my crazy kitchen disasters.  I’m a mess in the kitchen.  Everyone’s burned dinner, but have you ever had the fire department over because of the smoke? I’ve done that and more. I hope you’ll find these stories as funny as they are embarrassing!

Carolina Panthers Head Coach John Fox contributes the forward and the profits are all going to benefit Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation of Charlotte.  Coach Fox has long been a supporter of JDRF, even chairing our golf tournament every year.  As you can imagine, I’m beyond thrilled that he’s a part of this project.

I got a nice write up in Davidson and I’ll be featured in the October issue of Charlotte Living.  They came into the studio and took some pictures last week.  I’m sure I’ll look like a goof ball in my headphones – probably with my mouth wide open, laughing at something Al or Jim Szoke said! 

Anyway, we kick off at Blues Brews & BBQ on the 13th, so come by and say hi.  Please spread the word about this project – I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I’ll be able to write a big check to JDRF in a few months.

If you’d like to help, you can learn more and buy the book here.  Did I mention I’m a little nervous?