Make Lemonade . . .

Hey, cupcakes!

I’ve started this blog a dozen times and deleted it.  But now it’s time to finish it.

When I was about 39-years-old, I found out that I had a genetic disease, polycystic kidney disease.  I wasn’t too concerned because I have always been in good general health, never smoked, never done any drugs, and drank alcohol rarely.

From what I understood at the time, that having this disease could go in many different directions.

Some people suffer with it and die (like Erma Bombeck did).

Some must have kidney transplants  without complications (write a book about the experience) and all that goes with that (like Steven Cojocaru did).

Some go on dialysis 3-times a week, for 5 hours each day, for several years (which can kill a person).

While others, the lucky ones, might have this diesase their whole lives without any affect on their bodies at all.

This is according to

“Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) is a genetic disorder characterized by the growth of numerous cysts in the kidneys. The kidneys are two organs, each about the size of a fist, located in the upper part of a person’s abdomen, toward the back. The kidneys filter wastes and extra fluid from the blood to form urine. They also regulate amounts of certain vital substances in the body. When cysts form in the kidneys, they are filled with fluid. PKD cysts can profoundly enlarge the kidneys while replacing much of the normal structure, resulting in reduced kidney function and leading to kidney failure.

When PKD causes kidneys to fail-which usually happens after many years-the patient requires dialysis or kidney transplantation. About one-half of people with the most common type of PKD progress to kidney failure, also called end-stage renal disease (ESRD).”

So, kids, without any symptoms whatsoever . . .

I found out  (and only through a routine blood test that was given just a second thought while I was at my doctor’s office), that I am in end-stage renal disease.

This past Monday, I was told that I am in need of a kidney transplant.

**  I am in need of a healthy kidney from a compatible donor **

My blood type is O- (negative) .   That means I can only take a kidney from another person with an O blood type, or an A blood type (and that only after specific testing).

Jeff is testing for compatibility.  Evan is totally freaked out, teary and frightened. My heart is breaking for him.

I’m grateful that I’ve not been in any pain or haven’t had any of the gazillion symptoms (but high blood pressure) and that it has not seemed to slow me down,  — but I have to admit, it doesn’t really feel real, yet (those of you who have “accidentally” found a lump in your breast know exactly what I mean).

If I find a compatible donor, the surgery doesn’t sound all that bad.  The amount of anti-rejection medications that I will have to take for the rest of my life sounds freaky.  Luckily my insurance covers both myself and my donor.

I will continue my teaching and lecture schedule until I have to stop and that will only be during the recovery period.

So, chickadees, besides my quilting, crafting, magazine writing, bitching and complaining, this blog will begin to include musings about health & wellness.


By the way, my amazing bouquets of violets came up this week.  They are beautiful. And they are the New Jersey state flower!


So, folks, back to the subject, let’s see where this all goes, shall we?

What an adventure!

And, I try to remember that when life gives us LEMONS . . .

. . . We make lemonade!

  • 1 3/4 cups white sugar
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups lemon juice

In a small saucepan, combine sugar and 1 cup water. Bring to boil and stir to dissolve sugar. Allow to cool to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate until chilled.
Remove seeds from lemon juice, but leave pulp. In pitcher, stir together chilled syrup, lemon juice and remaining 7 cups water.

What?!?  No lemons?


(Sorry, I just could not resist!  LOLOL)

1 lb. beef round steak
1 beef kidney
1/4 c. flour
1 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
3 tbsp. lard or drippings
1 med. sized onion, chopped
1/4 c. chopped pimento
2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp. thyme
1 1/2 c. water
Pastry for 1 crust pie

Cut round steak in 3/4 to 1 inch cubes. Remove tubes and fat from kidney and cut in 3/4 to 1 inch cubes. Combine flour, salt and pepper. Dredge steak and kidney cubes in seasoned flour (reserving any extra flour) and brown in lard or drippings. Remove meat from frying pan. Add onion to drippings and cook over low heat until transparent. Pour off drippings, add pimento, Worcestershire sauce, thyme and water to onion in frying pan and bring to boil. Stir in browned meat cubes and any remaining seasoned flour. Invert 9 inch pie plate over pastry rolled to about 1/8 inch thickness. Cut a circle about an inch from rim of plate for top crust. Cut a design in crust to allow steam to escape.

Cut a second circle about 3/4 to 1 inch from edge of top crust to provide pastry to circle edge of pie plate. Moisten edge of plate and top with outer circle of pastry, adjusting to fit. Turn meat mixture into pie plate and cover with top crust. Seal top pastry to edge and flute. Bake in preheated 325 degree oven for 1 1/2 hours. Makes 6 servings.

Do what you love, cupcakes!

I’m always on your team!  xoxom

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217 Comments on “Make Lemonade . . .”

  1. Julie Messerly
    April 19, 2010 at 10:15 PM #

    My God this is a bit shocking to all of us too.
    I am so very sorry you and your family have to deal with this. I will pray that a match is found soon. I wish I were a match as you could have 1 of my kidney’s.
    Please keep us up to date as much as you are able and if there is anything we can do, I have no doubt it will be done………….


  2. April 19, 2010 at 10:19 PM #

    Funny how life can turn on a simple test, a heartbeat, a kidney, whatever. Love your attitude, Mark. That is what will get you through this.

    Thanks for sharing the beautiful violet. My favorite flowers of all time.

    Gayle (who is on YOUR team!)


  3. Karen Pegg
    April 19, 2010 at 10:21 PM #

    Sorry to hear that Mark. I hope you find a compatible donor very soon. My dad and brother both do dialysis 3 times a week. (There are home options as well). But definitly alters standard of life. Prayers to you and your family.


  4. Carole Lakomec
    April 19, 2010 at 10:22 PM #

    Mark — Many prayers are sent your way. I hope it isn’t too long before you can find a donor. Too bad I’m a B+.

    We just got word that my 3 yo granddaughter has cystic fibrosis, but in a very mild form. This could lead to transplantation also.

    Carole, aka Poodle.


  5. cathi boerio
    April 19, 2010 at 10:22 PM #

    Mark, I am so sorry to hear this–i’m sure you are still a bit stunned by the news. My step-brother just got a liver transplant—-and thinking with your slightly warped sense of humor–at least no one has to die for you to get a kidney! I hope you find a compatible one very quickly!! Your sense of humor will go a long way to help you through the bad days!! And everyone will be thinking of you and cheering you on! Poor Evan–I’m sure he is scared!!
    take care,


  6. Sandra Scotty
    April 19, 2010 at 10:23 PM #

    OH MY !!! What news! I can’t imagine what you and your family are going through right now but I do know you have the spunk and the positive attitude to make it through all of this. My prayers are bieng sent your way for you and your family. Please take care of yourself and I wish you all best of luck in the world.


  7. April 19, 2010 at 10:25 PM #

    I will be praying that you find a donor quickly. My heart goes out to You, Jeff and Evan. Big (((HUGS)))!!!


  8. lkettle
    April 19, 2010 at 10:26 PM #

    Sending lots of hugs, prayers for a donor and an extra helping of comfort for you and your family.


  9. April 19, 2010 at 10:27 PM #

    Crappers, Mark. Mav Power, white light, prayers and wishes for a quick donor search and then a quick recovery for you and yours.


  10. Susan
    April 19, 2010 at 10:27 PM #

    Mark, my heart goes out to you and your family. I pray that you find a donor soon. A big hug for you, Evan and Jeff. God Bless…Susan


  11. Susan
    April 19, 2010 at 10:28 PM #

    Mark-What a shock! I hope that a donor is found quickly! Love your spirit! The recipes look yummy! Love and prayers to you and your family.


  12. Jane
    April 19, 2010 at 10:29 PM #

    Sending positive thoughts your way hoping you find a donor soon. Goes to show we never know what life is going to throw our way or when! Love the lemonade recipe!!!! Gotta keep the sense of humor right???


  13. April 19, 2010 at 10:30 PM #

    OMG Mark you just blew me away! I wish I could donate to you but I am not compatible. I wish you all the best and hope that you find a compatible donor very soon. Please keep your chin up and don’t give up! You will conquer this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So many people believe in you as do I and we know that you will make good Lemonade, so take your time and make it a good one. You are in my prayers. Wow, this what you meant when you told me that you needed my well wishes so much more than I would ever know. Oh wow, Mark I feel so blessed that I was able to offer a kind word at the right time. Take care, Muffin! xoxoxox


  14. Sharon Decker
    April 19, 2010 at 10:30 PM #

    My prayers go out to you, Mark. What kind of restrictions are there for a donor? Are there age limits? Health restrictions? I am O+. Is that an issue?


  15. Lezley
    April 19, 2010 at 10:31 PM #

    Mark – if you EVER need to talk to someone who has been through TWO kidney transplants and it still going strong – you please call!!!! And there will be someone out there for you !!! SUPER big hugs to you and all those close to you!


  16. Beth
    April 19, 2010 at 10:32 PM #

    OMG that wasn’t at all what I was expecting to read in an important blog announcement but thanks for having the courage to share it with all of us. Prayers that you can get matched up with a suitable (living) donor quickly. I’m all for organ donation, even have the license plate on my car to prove it. Kevin saved 3 lives via organ donation.


  17. Lezley
    April 19, 2010 at 10:32 PM #

    Mark – my first thought was – how old are you! I wouldn’t have pegged you over 39!!! SUPER hugs dude.


  18. Melissa
    April 19, 2010 at 10:34 PM #

    Aloha Mark, I have A- blood…please let me know if there is somewhere I can go for a blood test. Anything I can do to help, please let me know. Prayers to you, your family, and your Pickle friends. Mahalo nui loa for all you do for all of us. Melissa


    • Guin
      April 19, 2010 at 10:42 PM #

      Mark, I can only imagine what you and your family are going through. My mother passed six years ago from kidney disease, I’m glad you are not havng any problems at this point and may you continue that way. My prayers are with you and your family. Much Love..Guin


  19. Auguste
    April 19, 2010 at 10:38 PM #

    Mark, I am shocked and sad to hear this. 😦 I hope you can find a donor quickly.


  20. Linda
    April 19, 2010 at 10:38 PM #

    Wow, what a shocker…I can only begin to understand your shock (both my parents died of cancer within a month of each other…before age 65) but particularly Evans…love and prayers to you all
    p.s. I LOVE steak and kidney pie!! (is that bad?!?! LOL)


  21. Penny Cable
    April 19, 2010 at 10:39 PM #

    Well, amazing how many medical problems seem to be found accidentally.
    I am truly sorry you have end-stage renal failure. But you have a loving family and a quadzillion ladies (well, mostly ladies) to support you. I will keep you in my prayers and thoughts.


  22. Chelley
    April 19, 2010 at 10:40 PM #

    Mark, you are so loved and have so many friends who will get tested for you. What are the test requirements? I’m O+. I’m glad your spirits seem to be holding up and you’re able to keep the jokes coming. We’re all here for you!


  23. April 19, 2010 at 10:40 PM #

    Mark, I am so sorry to hear about this turn of events. I am glad to hear that you have a great attitude about it all because that is what will get you through this easier. I will be praying for you and your family. Take care and God bless, Cory


  24. April 19, 2010 at 10:41 PM #

    Definitely keep us posted…I’m A+ in Baltimore.

    Praying for you and your sweet guys!


  25. April 19, 2010 at 10:43 PM #

    I’m so sorry to hear this. My thoughts are with you. While you’re making lemonade out of lemons, I suggest looking into the story of Nick Glasgow. He needed a bone marrow transplant but was told he had less than a 1 in a million chance of finding a donor because he was part Asian and the number of mixed race donors were VERY slim. With the power of social media Nick was able to find 2 perfect matches. Unfortunately, his story has a sad ending, but it is uplifting to know that now so many people have a shot a life because the bone marrow registry’s mix of mixed race donors has increased significantly because of Nick. I hope you find a donor soon. You’ve been an inspiration to the quilting community.


  26. Diane
    April 19, 2010 at 10:43 PM #

    All I can say is Wow.


  27. Amy
    April 19, 2010 at 10:45 PM #

    My thoughts are with you and your family. I am B type blood so I guess I’m not a match either. I would happily donate to you if I could. That would help me knock off an extra couple pounds right? I hope everything turns out fine but I know it will because I still firmly believe that good things happen to good people.


    • Kelly
      April 21, 2010 at 6:05 PM #

      Hi, My name is Kelly. My oldest son, Joshua was diagnosed with Wegener’s disease in April 09 which has damaged his kidneys. He started dialysis 1 week before Thanksgiving and am praying that a living donor would appear. Josh’s blood type is a B. Mine is AB and dad’s is A. If you would consider kidney donation or know of anyone interested in kidney donation for my dear boy who will be 16 on May 1, please let me know. This isn’t Josh’s first blow with medical issues unfortunatley as he was born with a hole in his heart and had open heart surgery at 10 months old. Josh is a very special sweet boy who deserves the best chance. Hope to keep in touch..


  28. Fran
    April 19, 2010 at 10:46 PM #

    Mark, my husband and two of his three sisters also have polycystic kidney disease. His younger sister had a transplant from their 64 year old mother about 25 years ago. His other sister has had two kidney transplants. Both they and my husband were on dialysis at different times. My husband had a transplant at the age of 62 a little more than a year ago. He is doing great!!! His sisters do well also. You hang in there!


  29. Alice Troxel
    April 19, 2010 at 10:46 PM #

    I’m so very sorry for your troubles, I wish I could offer a kidney, but this would be the very first time I’ve found us to be incompatible. I know how strong you are and tour family, friends, and pickles will all support you. I’ll pray for you. Love you mark.


  30. Diana LaFaro
    April 19, 2010 at 10:47 PM #

    I’m so sorry. I wish you the best, Mark, for a speedy donor match, surgery and recovery.


  31. Sandra Fiegi
    April 19, 2010 at 10:48 PM #

    I am so sorry, Mark. This is a big shock. Please give Evan a hug for me & tell him it will be fine because we are all pulling for you. I would give you a kidney but I am O+ and a diabetic so that probably wouldn’t work out so well.


  32. Denise
    April 19, 2010 at 10:48 PM #

    Dear God! Mark, I will be praying for you- thank you for sharing this with us, and please let us know how we can help you, what kind of encouragement means the most to you? I am simply stunned and just really don’t know what to say but you, Jeff and Evan are certainly in my prayers! ((Hugs))


  33. April 19, 2010 at 10:50 PM #

    My heart goes out to you, Evan and Jeff. Hang in there…..I know there’s a healthy kidney somewhere with your name on it.


  34. Peggy
    April 19, 2010 at 10:53 PM #

    Mark, I just said a prayer for you that a donor will be found for you very soon.


  35. Patricia Wilcoxson
    April 19, 2010 at 10:53 PM #

    Dear Mark, I am o neative .How cah I help ? I would gladly donate a kidney to you. Check with your dr. I am 73 in great health. Just had my annual physical this month .My doc said she wished she was in such good shape.


  36. April 19, 2010 at 10:55 PM #

    Hi Mark.
    I just HAD to respond. I, too, know the emotional roller coaster that you are feeling. When I was 45 I went fova routine colonoscopy. It turned out to be anything but routine. I was told that I had Stage III B rectal cancer. It was a tough year, but I am happy to report that it’s been 3 years and so far so good. My motto is: When life gives you lemons, make lemonade; when life gives you cancer, make Quilts!! God Bless and you are in my thoughts and prayers !! Tamme


  37. Cindy
    April 19, 2010 at 10:57 PM #

    OMG. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. Let’s hope they find a donor soon.


  38. AmyBB
    April 19, 2010 at 11:00 PM #

    Hang in there, dude. You know I love you guys.


  39. carol
    April 19, 2010 at 11:01 PM #

    I am so sorry about this news Mark, gigantic hugs to you, Jeff and Evan. All positive thoughts and prayers going your way.


  40. Jan
    April 19, 2010 at 11:03 PM #

    Good gravy! I wish you and your family all the best during this difficult time. Hugs to you all!


  41. Sharon
    April 19, 2010 at 11:03 PM #

    Some questions:

    This showed up a web search r/t living donors – “Some kidney diseases seem to have immune cells in the body that attack the kidney and damage it over time. These diseases often tend to come back and affect the new kidney. In these cases, a slightly poorer match is usually preferred.” Wondered if this may or may not apply.

    And would your Dr. perform laproscopic surgery on the donor or a traditional incision? You know, girls and their bikini-bodies!

    I’m listed with the National bone marrow donor registry…I don’t know if that information is available to cross match (and save some time/tests) for a kidney transplant. I’m blood type A+…healthy, and willing to put Roller Derby aside for a bit! LOL… So, add me to a list of possibles (I think you can see my email) and keep us posted! (I’m also a Facebook friend) Hugs!


  42. Sally Signore
    April 19, 2010 at 11:04 PM #

    Sending good thoughts to you, Jeff and Evan. Life can take such strange twists. As necessary as it is to spread the word so that a donor can be found, it must be hard to share this news. You have a world wide community of support out here thinking of you and wishing you the best.


  43. Carolyn
    April 19, 2010 at 11:07 PM #


    You, Jeff and Evan are in my thoughts and prayers. I am praying that you find a donor soon. Your great attitude and humor will help all of you get through this difficult time. Please keep us posted.


  44. Helen
    April 19, 2010 at 11:11 PM #

    Mark, Jeff and Evan,

    Keep strong and rely on each other, let your love for each other support you and give you strength. Im so sorry for this news but Im believing you will find a positive match and a donor. You have many years of life together ahead of you all, hang in there, a donor cant be far away. xoxoxoxox


  45. Carmen
    April 19, 2010 at 11:14 PM #

    I’m pretty sure that I mentioned on the group (Pickle road) that I have had a kidney transplant. I don’t think I mentioned that the reason I needed the transplant was PKD. IF you have any questions at all, or just need a sounding board, please do not hesitate to contact me. I’ll do anything I can to help.


    • April 19, 2010 at 11:18 PM #

      You are kidding?!? I can’t believe how many people have it, now that I’m aware of my own circumstances! I’m very curious about where/how you found a kidney? Your meds routine? Steroids? etc. Can’t wait to chat with you! CANNOT WAIT! xoxom


  46. Rita C
    April 19, 2010 at 11:15 PM #

    Send you well wishes and prayers. May a donor be found soon.


  47. BethG
    April 19, 2010 at 11:17 PM #

    My prayers are with you, Jeff and Evan. Keep up the humor and remain positive.


  48. Barbara Miville
    April 19, 2010 at 11:19 PM #

    Keeping you in my prayers. Know of several people with transplants (one even with a heart transplant) – they are doing excellent – so will you!


  49. BethQ
    April 19, 2010 at 11:20 PM #

    I’m very sorry to hear your news. I had to sit here and think for a few minutes after reading this. You just never know what your future holds for you. Not even the next day. I am A- and would be very happy to help in anyway I can. We already have a lot in common (I erased my list!) and what could be better then to have kidneys in common? I’ll keep you and your family in my thoughts.


  50. Anita
    April 19, 2010 at 11:23 PM #

    Mark, you have so many people who love and admire you. I know this situation is going to end up being ok. You have 3000 posse members! You’re going to be ok, I just know it. And you’re going to continue to entertain and teach us about quilting and life!


  51. Laura Jo Farries
    April 19, 2010 at 11:24 PM #

    Mark, sweetie! So sorry to hear about your kidney problems! I would offer to donate, but with my high blood sugar, I don’t think I’d be compatable. Praying you get a donor asap! I do have some good things to say, however. My adopted father had a kidney transplant in 1978, and when he passed away 17 years later (not from kidney problems), that kidney was still going strong. Kidney transplants have come a long, long way. And if you have to go on dialysis even temporarily, it’s not as difficult as you would think. I think my dad said it made him a bit tired on the days he had dialysis, so think of it as built in nap time! I know you’ll be fine, and will be praying for you, Jeff and Evan. Keep your chin up, babe, things will come out all right! 🙂 Be sure to contact the American Kidney Foundation if you’ve not done so yet, they’ll probably have some words of wisdom.


  52. April 19, 2010 at 11:24 PM #

    Mark—some healthy hugs coming your way. My best friend’s father-in-law in Ohio had two kidney transplants (quite a few years apart). The second one came from his 50 year-old daughter. Recovery time was really fast for both of them.


  53. Francine A Warren
    April 19, 2010 at 11:28 PM #

    Goes without saying all prayers are with you! I am O- unfortunately I have Thalamessma- a type of Anemia which you can’t take iron for & can’t donate even blood- you don’t want to pass this one- it affects the heart & other organs as the blood fails to carry oxygen properly through-out the body. Lord child you do seem to get it all- the best & the worst. Please take it easy, no one will ever say a thing about a quilt not made or a magazine not written, but everyone will cry over a man not with us!


  54. April 19, 2010 at 11:30 PM #


    Please know that good thoughts and prayers are being sent to you, Jeff and Evan. Keep thinking positive, stay active, don’t take any shit from anyone and you’ll pull through this just fine.


  55. mary lou eustace
    April 19, 2010 at 11:36 PM #

    Mark, I’m still in shock. I wish all the best for you. You will be in my prayers. Your positive attitude will surely help you.
    love to you,
    Mary Lou


  56. April 19, 2010 at 11:38 PM #

    The woman from whom I bought my shop has had both a kidney (from her brother) and a pancreas transplant. I’m sure she could tell you about the long term effects of all those meds, too (transplant was a few years back).

    What a sudden ‘hitch’ in your life! My heart is with you and your family — good luck!!



  57. Marsha
    April 19, 2010 at 11:40 PM #

    I am so sorry to hear your news, but it sounds as if you have half the battle fought already with just your attitude being so postive. May my prayers be with you and a quick match found. Thank you for sharing, I know it is hard. Hugs to all, Marsha


  58. Roniquilts2
    April 19, 2010 at 11:45 PM #

    I am sorry this problem has come into your life, Mark. May the sharing of your burden be lightened by all of us who care and will pray for you. I hope you feel the prayers flying high and the thoughts heading your way. HUGS, Roni


  59. April 19, 2010 at 11:49 PM #

    I feel your pain, my children have a rare gentic diease called Primary hyper auxluria (Ph1 for short) and may require both kidney and liver transpalnts in the near future.!!! Praying a donor is found for you!!


  60. Mary Van Dijk
    April 19, 2010 at 11:52 PM #

    Mark Certainly not the important news that we are used to seeing on your blog. My prayers go out to you all. My siblings and I are also checked for PKD as my Dad had it. So far so good. We also lost our Mother to kidney damage when she was very young. Hoping that a kidney becomes available for you soon.


  61. Rena Long
    April 19, 2010 at 11:53 PM #

    Mark –

    You are the pillar of strength. I saw you what three days ago. You took the time to hug me and have your picture taken. I will be praying for you, for Jeff, and for Evan. Keep making lemonade, Cupcake – remember the will to live is ever strong and you are blessed.



  62. Jackie (aka Katy)
    April 19, 2010 at 11:54 PM #

    Wow, you sure know how to change the subject from free thread. 🙂 I’m B+ so I can’t donate directly to you . . . BUT if you could find someone in a “chain” transplant, I’d be happy to donate to that person so you could get your kidney. Send me an email! I’ll head to the doctor’s office.


  63. Sandie
    April 20, 2010 at 12:05 AM #

    Prayers and thoughts are with you,(and Jeff and Evan). Is there an organization that tests for compatibility for transplant donors? I am uninsured, but would be willing to test for compatibility for you or anyone else on the waiting list. I am O blood type.(Can’t remember if it is +/-, but I am the universal donor for blood, whichever type that is!)


    • April 20, 2010 at 1:05 AM #

      Universal donor is O- like me, but we can only take O- xoxom


  64. Eileen Kicken
    April 20, 2010 at 12:07 AM #

    Mark–I’m so sorry about your news and I’m sending healing energy your way. I can only imagine how frightened and stressed you all are right now. We’re with you, too!


  65. Valerie in WV
    April 20, 2010 at 12:11 AM #

    Mark, Don’t give up, never let anything in life stop you or get you down. I am O positive but my health is in too bad of shape to help, but I can say a prayer for you which can often times be the most important gift of all. I am so glad you chose to share your struggles with us all, never try and fight something alone, there is always strength in numbers. Please give your son a huge HUG for me, tell him to stay positive and we will all help you get through this ordeal and give you all the support we can possibly send your way. We never know when God will choose to take us home, we should all live each day as if its our last. You are a strong person, that shows in your words. I know you can beat this and you WILL WIN. SMILE, you’re a very special person, creative and loving. I’ve seen you fight through the tough times in the quilting world and I know you can fight this stumbling block in life. Stay positive and keep on fighting! Love ya bunches!


  66. Patty Johnson
    April 20, 2010 at 12:12 AM #

    What news! My heart and my prayers go out to you and your family. Keep up the positive attitude—that’s half the battle!! Lots of hugs to you!


  67. Jill
    April 20, 2010 at 12:15 AM #


    You are the most positive person out there. I am sure your guardian angel is looking over you and directing your donor to you as we speak. I am grateful you are not in any pain and look forward to your continued blogs and laughter filling my inbox 🙂


  68. Nancy
    April 20, 2010 at 12:17 AM #

    Stunned is not an adequate word for what I’ve just read. When I read the blog notice “important to me” I thought you had added an exciting new undertaking to your already busy life. I’m so sorry Mark! My parts are a “bit” too old to donate to anyone, but I’m certain, with prayers and good fortune, you will find a compatible donor. Hugs to you.


  69. April 20, 2010 at 12:17 AM #

    Mark, just let me know if Jeff isn’t a match, I’ll give you one of mine. I had been meaning to confess to Jeff that I love you. Kidding aside, you, Jeff and Evan are in my thoughts and prayers.


  70. April 20, 2010 at 12:17 AM #

    Oh Mark, what a bugger! I hope you find a donor soon and that all goes well. Keep us posted!


  71. sara volk
    April 20, 2010 at 12:25 AM #

    Mark, I’ve never prayed for a kidney before, but hey, there’s always a first time. I’m B-positive or I’d be on The List in a heartbeat. Take time for yourself, try to do what your doctors tell you, and keep your wonderful family close. XXOOOOO. There’s a kidney out there with your name on it boyfriend.

    I can just see your next fabric line with paisley kidneys.


  72. Cecelia
    April 20, 2010 at 12:33 AM #

    Mark, you are in my prayers. Hoping for a match quickly.


  73. Terri Thayer
    April 20, 2010 at 12:46 AM #

    Best wishes, Mark, for a wonderful result. My thoughts are with you.


  74. Liz V
    April 20, 2010 at 12:50 AM #

    Sending tons & tons of positive thoughts your way! May a match come quickly and a restful recovery!


  75. Debbie Goff
    April 20, 2010 at 12:52 AM #

    Mark I have a friend whose sister gave a kidney to her, they were both in thier teens at the time. They are both doing great and I know there will be a donor out there for you. Several of our patients have undergone this also and they are thriving. It is amazing the technology that is out there. I am sorry you and Evan and Jeff are going thru this. Stand strong cupcake and remember the saying, If God Brings you to it, He will bring you thru it. (Or what ever higher being you believe in). My thoughts and prayers are with you and yours. OH and I LOVE steak and Kidney pie thank you sooooooooo much for this recipe, will try it tomorrow. Luv ya


  76. Nancy Dill
    April 20, 2010 at 12:54 AM #

    Mark, I have a disease that puts my kidneys at risk and has already damaged my heart. So I might need a kidney myself one day or I would gladly give you one of mine!


  77. Leta Brennan
    April 20, 2010 at 12:55 AM #

    Just wanted you to know that you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.


  78. Maria Mayet
    April 20, 2010 at 1:00 AM #

    Mark – you are an inspiration to all. For me personally, you have opened up the world of quilting. There is so much more that I look forward to learning from you which is why I will be raising you, Jeff and Evan in prayer. You are loved by many, those you touch everyday with your words; and, those that have met you face-to-face. I look forward to meeting you one day and giving you a much deserved hug! XOXOXO one of your cupcakes, Maria


  79. April 20, 2010 at 1:02 AM #

    Oh, wow, Mark. I’m stunned to learn this. Nothing to say except that you are in my thoughts and we’re rooting for you…


  80. Maria Cupcake
    April 20, 2010 at 1:05 AM #

    I wish I were healthy enough to give you a kidney because I am A+, but I’m not able to because of my health issues (bladder cancer, so, damaged goods)
    I wish I could say”oh Mark, didn’t you hear, there’s a cure for this, piece of cake” but I know you will always have questions.
    I wish I could tell your little family ” go on about your business, no big deal” but I know it is
    Most of all, I wish I could sit on the little seat beside you , hold your hand and share a soul cleansing cry and say “well , that’s enough of that, let’s do what we have to do.
    Loving your strong spirit Mark, keep us all in touch


  81. Maria
    April 20, 2010 at 1:10 AM #

    Mark, I am sorry to hear the news. My husband received a kidney twelve years ago. I donated mine. Not a perfect match, but good enough. You are in for a journey. It may be overwhelming at first, but stay organized and it will become easier to deal with over time. Your life will change in many ways.At least you have a supportive family that loves you and a world of friends that support you. Be easy on yourself. I have a friend looking for a donor who is working for a circle of donations. If you have a living donor who is not compatible with you, he may be compatible with someone else and the circle goes on until your donor gives his kidney to someone else and you receive one from a stranger. Again, sounds overwhelming, but your transplant coordinator should be able to help. Please feel free to chat with me if you have questions. Is a different experience for everyone. Good luck to you and please, keep us posted.


  82. CelticRose
    April 20, 2010 at 1:13 AM #

    Mark, you and your family are in my prayers.



  83. Kathy
    April 20, 2010 at 1:21 AM #

    Love and hugs to you and your family. I am so sorry to hear your news but I will keep very positive thoughts going your way.


  84. Deanna
    April 20, 2010 at 1:22 AM #

    Best of wishes for a quick match. Thanks for sharing so we can all lift you & yours up in prayer.


  85. Amy
    April 20, 2010 at 1:23 AM #

    I think everyone wishes they could make this all better for you. Keep the faith. I wouldn’t be surprised if your new kidney comes from a friend of a friend of a pickle! I’m not one to talk about divine intervention, but how many collective friends do all of your facebook friends have? I think you are meant to do big things & I think all of us will help you through this! My heart is with you and your family.


  86. JoAn godfrey
    April 20, 2010 at 1:28 AM #

    Take care of yourself. i have been a dialysis nurse for over 14 years total. do what you are told EXACTLY, whether you want to or not, they know what they are talking about. DO NOT stop taking your meds.
    Then you will do OK.


  87. susan j gill
    April 20, 2010 at 1:31 AM #

    have you contacted johns hopkins/baltimore? they are doing kidney transplants with over 12 people at a time-if someone can’t find a perfect match but has someone that wants to donate they locate someone to take the healthy kidney and on wards kind of like passing good luck and blessings forward you are in my thoughts and heart YOU CAN DO THIS!!!!!


  88. Brenda
    April 20, 2010 at 1:32 AM #

    Mark, first and foremost, prayers for strength, hugs and kisses for love, friends for laughter and peace for your journey. I went through breast cancer 12 years ago at 32 with three small children and just married. You may go through the stages of denial – anger – angst – and so on but chin up big guy. Rely on Jeff and your friends to get you through. This is a journey that affects everyone so Jeff and Evan need to have help available to them so they can cope also. I am offering you my whole heart full of laughter and best wishes for your journey. If I were a match, I would be there tomorrow am for the testing. If I were closer I would be there to hold your hand and for the shoulder (for everyone). I am with you in spirit and heart. Keep your sense of who you are and you can do anything. If you need me – just contact me.
    Love to you, Jeff and Evan


  89. April 20, 2010 at 1:44 AM #

    OH dear Lord…..I wish I could help you,,but being diabetic that is NOT an option. I can send up thoughts to the Universe!
    Or I can say “honestly Mark, aren’t you taking this whole Patchwork thing a bit far now, piecing yourself back together?”….LOL

    YOu know I love you my Gemini Twin!
    Hugs to Jeff and Evan from Auntie Jacquie and an extra squeeze for you cupcake!


  90. BA in BC
    April 20, 2010 at 1:48 AM #

    Wow…will hold good thoughts for you…


    • Alba Elliott
      April 20, 2010 at 5:48 PM #

      One brother donate a kidney to the other brother,he lived almost l4 yrs after that and enjoy every minute, I wish my father had done the same as my brother. He didnt. I am glad to say the donnor still around in good health. Go for it.


  91. April 20, 2010 at 2:09 AM #

    Mark! This is really rotten but seems like you’ve already filed this under annoying and inconvenient, but doable (and worthy of poking fun at). Big hug to you and your family.



  92. April 20, 2010 at 2:11 AM #

    I am B+. While that means my kidney is not right for you, it allows me to be positive (get it?) that an angel is out there waiting to give you a kidney! You and Jeff and Evan are in my prayers! Much love to each of you!!xoxoxo


  93. April 20, 2010 at 2:29 AM #

    Wow Mark!! What a week you, Jeff and Evan are having! God Bless you richly my friend, and may He bring you your doner expediantly!! I wish I could help you with this as quickly as I did with your push-pins – but I am not a match on blood type. 😦 However, I do have a few friends out there that I will pass the word on to and see what we can find. 🙂 Stay possitive, tell Evan (and Jeff) to be strong and BELIEVE!! Miracles and answered prayers happen every day! You are such a blessing to so many, you brighten their lives in so many ways, you make everyone around you feel loved/special, and you inspire us all in too many ways to count – for this you are loved, prayed for, and in line for a HUGE Blessing (because you have Blessed us). We all love you; thank you; are praying for you, and will do all we can to help – in any way we can. Be brave, stay possitive, and this “challenge” too, you shall overcome!!


  94. April 20, 2010 at 2:44 AM #

    Mark my thoughts and prayers are with you, Jeff, and Evan. My brother and nephew have the same disease. I’d offer you mine, but I’m saving it for my brother. Hang in there I’m sure you will find a donor.


  95. Sherri
    April 20, 2010 at 2:50 AM #

    Mark, I had to write. I wish you, Jeff and Evan the best. All your pickles are here for you. It was one year ago that I was diagnosed with a rare bone marrow disorder called Essential Thrombocythemia. It was discovered during routine blood work. I am ok, but it can develop into acute leukemia later in life. In both our cases, it was found during a routine doctor’s visit. It goes to show you how important it is to have these routine visits. My prayers are with you. Please keep us posted. I love your energy and your love of life. Hugs, Sherri


  96. Judy Knox
    April 20, 2010 at 2:52 AM #

    All of your vast quilting family are wishing the very best for you. We hope your pups and your people help you keep that smile on your face while you wait as patiently as you can for the match that you need.


  97. Joyce Siedentop
    April 20, 2010 at 3:09 AM #

    My postive thoughts and prayers go out to you. I will put you on our prayer chain tomorrow. Hey you will be able to join my cousin in the transplant olympics. Yes there is such a thing usually held in May. He had a liver transplant about 12 or so years ago. Doing fine. If you need to talk I am only a phone call away.


  98. April 20, 2010 at 3:11 AM #


    My heart and prayers are going out to you and will so be, until I know your transplant surgery is completed and you are over this hurdle of life. Sounds like you have a wonderful doctor. Please let us know if there is anything we can do to help.

    Hugs, many hugs.



  99. Sally Russell
    April 20, 2010 at 3:18 AM #

    Attitude, attitude…attitude. You must keep your quirky sense of humor and talk, Get it all out! When you can’t sleep due to worrying..there are drugs for that, if they don’t help….ask for more. It will get easier. I myself didn’t think I could ever say the word “cancer”, but believe me I can now and with laughter. I was surprised when I found out about my breast cancer, but with great family, friends, doctors & their staff…they days got easier and easier. I was shocked to read your blog, but confident that you will sail through this like the trooper you are. My best wishes to you and your family.


  100. Bonnie B2
    April 20, 2010 at 3:29 AM #

    Mark, I am stunned and speechless, but after reading so many of the comments, I see there is much hope and possibility expressed by those who have knowledge and experience in kidney disease and transplants. I feel confident that the legions of fans you have will spread the word and donors will materialize before you know it. Hugs for you, Jeff and your wonderfuk son, Evan.


    • Bonnie B2
      April 20, 2010 at 3:47 AM #

      So sorry, please see ‘wonderful’ rather than the unfortunate typo. Bad eyesight on my part.


  101. April 20, 2010 at 3:38 AM #

    You have the best sense of humour – including that pie! It obviously has helped you to this point in life, and will continue to do so. Hang on to that and your family on the rough days.

    I will be hoping that everything turns out as it should and you will be on the road to recovery before long.

    PS My boss had a heart transplant at 51. He feels great now, despite the anti-rejection meds.


  102. Ruth lofgren
    April 20, 2010 at 3:45 AM #

    Mark. I too have PKD and have been on peritoneal dialysis for 6 years. I was listed for transplant 4 years ago in VA then moved to Calif and am being reevaluated and tested to be listed here. Iwould live to chat with you more about it if you would email me at Ill give you me phone number there. My son was 15 and my husband in Iraq when all my news came about.


  103. Linda Scribner
    April 20, 2010 at 3:55 AM #

    Mark, you will be in my prayers as will your family. I pray that you find a donor quickly. Your humor will go a long way in carrying you through as will the love of your friends, your family and your cupcakes!


  104. April 20, 2010 at 4:11 AM #

    Sending all good wishes that you will find a donor quickly. Can’t lose our Mark!


  105. carolrose
    April 20, 2010 at 4:23 AM #

    I am so sorry…I hope that you have a donor soon. You and your family are in my thoughts. You (and your wonderful sense of humor) are much appreciated by so many of us quilters!


  106. Cathy Stoddard
    April 20, 2010 at 4:41 AM #

    Dear Mark,
    I have faith you will triumph over this disease. You have what it takes to beat a chronic disease – a GREAT ATTITUDE!! I found out 25 years ago (at the age of 25) I had Rheumatoid Arthritis. I went to a specialist that told me the only option I had was to go home & go to bed. That within 10 years, I would be in a wheelchair. Being a single parent of a 3yo, I simply could not do that. Praise God for a young doc that gave me hope! I have had to make some (minor) adjustments like giving up the bull-riding & sky diving, but I’m still going strong – with NO wheelchair!! If you have any qualms about your doc – find one you feel good about!!! Make sure you understand every little detail about what they are doing & WHY. I will keep you, your family, your docs, and the perfect donor you will find, lifted up in prayer.
    Stay strong! Rember, while you may have days you doubt this – you have the disease – it DOESN’T have you!!

    Cathy Stoddard


  107. Jodie
    April 20, 2010 at 5:08 AM #

    Hey Petal,
    I really can’t believe this. A close friend just told me a few days ago her partner needs a liver transplant – he is in his early 30’s.
    I have several friends who have had successful transplant surgeries, and two family members who are still waiting.
    Remember darling that you have thousands of people hoping and praying for you. By putting the message out there no doubt you have reminded people to consider organ donation.
    Stay positive – we are all behind you cupcake. Something great is going to happen very soon.
    Lots of quilty hugs, XXXXX


  108. Judi Wamsley
    April 20, 2010 at 5:18 AM #

    I know how you feel. I have PKD and have been monitoring my health for several years. I have an older brother and sister that have had transplants and my younger brother is on the list to receive one. He may have a live donor. It scares me to think it will most likely happen to me too but then I think of my family and they are doing well. We have to think positive. I love your sense of humor and I felt like we were kindred spirits before but now I feel it even more. I look forward to seeing you this Friday in Olympia, Washington. I think this weekend will lift your spirits. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and yours. I love music so put on some good tunes, rock out and celebrate life! The sun will come out tomorrow….


  109. April 20, 2010 at 5:20 AM #

    Here’s hoping that among your vast legions of friends, fans, followers, acquaintances, that one will be a perfect match and volunteer to help.

    It always amazes me how life can turn around in an instant, when we least expect it.


  110. Becky
    April 20, 2010 at 5:33 AM #

    Bummer! What a shock! FWIW, at least you’re close to a big city and have a ton of things going for you. I worked with a lot of transplant patients when I did my medical lab training. They always had the most incredible view of life. Many came from long distances away and the worst part was being away from home. But it wasn’t for very long. I hope you can find a match!!! Good luck!


  111. GeeGee
    April 20, 2010 at 5:56 AM #

    Dear Mark, I have been following you since we were on Dear Jane and rejoiced in your successes and saddened to hear of your illness. May God’s Grace, Mercy and Divine Healing be with you!!! You are loved by so many and such a joy to us, I only hope we can be of some comfort to you, Jeff and Evan. Will keep you in my prayers. “By His Stripes, we ARE Healed!”
    Take care and God Bless!!!
    gladys xoxoxo


  112. April 20, 2010 at 6:15 AM #

    Mark – thanks for sharing. We don’t know each other, but I feel I know you through your mag and your blog and you are one vibrant energetic funny and interesting person. It doesn’t surprise me that you are going to keep going with your regularly scheduled programming – not much of an alternative is there? Sit in a rocking chair and turn sad and bitter? I don’t think so. BTW I use the lemons life gives me to make margaritas – yum yum!!!


  113. Jane
    April 20, 2010 at 7:23 AM #

    My thoughts and hopes are with you Mark.


  114. April 20, 2010 at 8:54 AM #

    Mark, you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.


  115. Catherine Ravera
    April 20, 2010 at 9:10 AM #

    Bonjourrrr Mark!
    You know this stupid volcano is keeping me away from you but I am sure you know I am next to you from accross the Atlantic! Love you 🙂


  116. April 20, 2010 at 9:54 AM #

    I know how it feels like, when the floor unexpectedly opens up underneath your feet, the ball of fire in the pitt of your stumage, and the only persons you can think of are your loved ones. Keep up the common sence, the humor (black humor) and optimism. This is your sons biggest lesson in life ever, he’ll learn from you and your partner how to handle situations like this, and he’l come out of it so much stronger. My kids did and so will your son. Big warm hugs and 3 kisses -very Dutch-, and I’ll keep my fingers crossed for a new kidney.


  117. Alison
    April 20, 2010 at 10:26 AM #

    Mark, your honesty and truthfulness are inspiring. You have the will and spirit that is needed for a challenge like this. I am a breast cancer survivor. These things happen to us to let us be example for others. We are teachers, (especially you!), so thank you in advance for all of the teaching to come. I wish you all the best, and a quick transplant. I know that you will be such a positive role model and will bring education, (there I go again) to all whose lives you already touch each day. I will pray for a speedy recovery…Us cupcakes are waiting for you – to be taught so very much more! God will bless you…..more….


  118. Peggy
    April 20, 2010 at 11:39 AM #

    Oh Mark, I cried reading your post. I know a donor will come forward and you will be healthy again. It is sad that our bodies can change our life plans, but I see that you are going to continue as usual……GOOD FOR YOU!
    It is good to see all the support you have with family and friends.


  119. April 20, 2010 at 12:13 PM #

    Mark I am so sorry to hear this. I was a dialysis nurse for many years and know that if you have to get on the transplant list the wait is 4-5 years. I hope that you can find someone willing to give you a kidney. My prayers are with you.


  120. Janice Webster
    April 20, 2010 at 12:19 PM #

    WOW!!! What no vodka in the lemonade? I went into the same shocked enviroment when the doctor told me that it was cancer. What questions do I ask, what will happen to me, everthing???? But it was my quilting friends that came to my rescue. They had the questions I should be asking the doctors and all the encouragement to get through it all. And I know that it will be your quilting friends that come to your rescue. Wish you all the love in the world for the compatible kidney to come you way and recovery to be quick and pain free.


  121. April 20, 2010 at 12:27 PM #

    first time I ever met someone with PKD, I met a couple bicycling across the U.S. to raise money for the PKD foundation (there IS one, check it out!) The young lady in the couple was the one with PKD. They were stopping off at a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Lake along the way in Virginia. We later heard from them when they dipped their bikes in the California surf! I hope your journey with this disease leads to a similarly beautiful and triumphant conclusion! I will be praying that you find a suitable donor soon and that all goes well for you and your family. Special hugs to Evan & Jeff–I know how they must be frantic for you!


  122. April 20, 2010 at 12:28 PM #

    Think positive and take it day by day. Attitude is everything. We have heard this mantra so much over the past 6 months as my husband battles cancer. We have really started to believe it can make a scary situation more bearable. You are in my thoughts and prayers!


  123. April 20, 2010 at 12:35 PM #

    Holy Crap Mark. Wishing you a healthy kidney and a speedy recovery. xoxoxxo


  124. Rosanne Clouston
    April 20, 2010 at 12:45 PM #

    Mark, sorry to hear you have to go through this. Sorry your family has to go through it too. 3 1/2 years ago in Dec. 2006, right before Christmas, I was dx with Esophageal cancer. The hardest thing I had to do was tell my sons, one is Evan’s age, at that time he was 12, the other 2 were18 and 20. The youngest I know had a lot of support from not just family but his friends and their parents.


  125. Irina
    April 20, 2010 at 12:47 PM #

    OMG I’m so sorry to hear about this, Mark!
    But I do admire the attitude with which you are handling this. I know how hard it can be to keep not only a “stiff upper lip” as the British would have it but also a smile on your face – all this in the face of a (potentially) life threatening situation. Keep it up – you are in my thoughts, for what it’s worth! LOL


  126. April 20, 2010 at 1:08 PM #



  127. Loretta Ivison
    April 20, 2010 at 1:11 PM #

    Hugs and hope to you and yours


  128. patricia oglesby
    April 20, 2010 at 1:13 PM #

    Thank goodness for routine blood tests! Hope you find a donor fast and wishing you a speedy and easy recovery. Blessings, blessings, blessings to you and all of yours and to the donor and their family as well.


  129. Tammy Horn
    April 20, 2010 at 1:29 PM #

    I’m so sorry to hear about your diagnosis. I’m sure that you have been innundated with offers of kidneys, well here’s one more (I’m A+). You are such an inspiration to all of us in the quilting world that it would be an honor to be able to help you continue to inspire us. Much love and good wishes to you, Evan and Jeff.


  130. Sandy
    April 20, 2010 at 2:20 PM #

    Good morning Mark, just read your blog. Now, I knew something was up, but just couldn’t figure out what….now we know 🙂
    I am O- and am a blood donor. I live in Canada….don’t know if I can help you or not, but am willing to try! We are only 7% of the population. I also know that I am free of a certain virus, so my blood can be given to newborns and preemies…not sure what the virus is tho.
    Wishing you all the best!


  131. Denise in PA
    April 20, 2010 at 2:30 PM #

    Mark, I am so sorry to hear this news – for you, for Jeff and for Evan. I, too, will send prayers for the perfect donor for you. Looks like a lot of prayers are coming your way and that and your humor will see you through this to a healthy and strong outcome. You have been, and continue to be, an inspiration to all of us. Hugs to you.


  132. April 20, 2010 at 2:38 PM #

    Prayers are with you Mark to find a donor and get this ball rolling to good health again! So glad you have not had bad symptoms or sickness…hope that part continues. Hope your sense of humor can get you and your family through this rough time!


  133. Ronna
    April 20, 2010 at 2:54 PM #

    My prayers are with you and your family. I would happy to spread the word and seek out donors. The quilting community is a wonderful place of loving people. Please contact me and let me know what someone would have to do to get tested to be a donor – place to go or contact, an organization or something that is nationwide?? My newsletter goes out tomorrow. If you can get me the information before then, I will post it. May you have comfort in know how many people are routing for you!


  134. Linda Craig
    April 20, 2010 at 2:56 PM #

    Hi Mark! Well, life sure does takes it’s twists and turns, doesn’t it. I can’t tell you how shocked I am, but I’m sure that’s very mild compared to how your family must feel and of course yourself. I love your upbeat, positive approach to everything in life, and I am going to do the same for you. I know you’ll find the right donour and you’ll have a wonderful recovery. I too know a friend that has donated to her friend (who was desperately ill) and that was many years ago, and they are both doing very, very well. Medicine has taken such leaps and bounds over the years and I know you will benefit from their expertise. Keep us posted as to how you are doing and I send my love and prayers your way. ((((HUGS))))


  135. Jeanette
    April 20, 2010 at 3:10 PM #

    How about a Facebook group page called “Find A Donor for Mark!” We could all invite our friends, who could invite their friends, and so on…who knows..maybe it would raise awareness for more transplants! I lost a kidney when I was 31…had failed as a child and was never caught. Have been lucky with that…no dialysis, no transplant yet…and I’m 56!


  136. Barb in Winnipeg
    April 20, 2010 at 3:22 PM #

    Your sense of life and humor and the thoughts and prayers of all your cupcakes will help get you through this My Dear Pickle King. Thinking of you, Evan and Jeff.


  137. Jaci Emerson
    April 20, 2010 at 3:23 PM #

    A+ here…Not compatible…But I’ll be praying for you, too! Focus on happiness, and live each day to the fullest! Live happy!


  138. Karen Rumsey
    April 20, 2010 at 3:26 PM #

    Hey Mark…I was scared for you and your family when I read this. Then I got to reading more of the postings on the Blog and have concern but don’t feel as scared. Met and talked to you once at a quilt show. Love your attitude!! I have every good reason to believe that a donor will be provided for you. Keep positive…..hummmmm…..long island iced tea……….


  139. Pat in NY
    April 20, 2010 at 3:26 PM #

    Sweetie, if anyone can turn this lemon into lemonade, it’s you.

    I can’t help you donor-wise (B-), but you’ve sure got my prayers and my virtual quilt to snuggle up in. You will beat this and come through it better than ever.

    Let Jeff and Evan (and the pups) keep your spirits up and, in turn, keep them and us posted on the gory details. It’s not knowing what’s going on and guessing the worst that is so scary for your support group.

    We’re all here for you!
    P.S. It’s okay to whimper a little once in a while. Even you can’t be upbeat all the time and we love you any way you dish it.


  140. Pat Coble
    April 20, 2010 at 4:00 PM #

    Dear Mark,
    I’m so glad you had that last minute test.
    Thank you for helping us understand the illness and your options.
    More thanks for the entirely Markish lemonade recipe following the life and lemonade
    quote. and then ,,the violets.
    You brighten our lives so much with your humor and point of view.
    I hope you will be able to brighten your own life with the same gifts you give us.
    Thank you,
    Pat in Seaside, CA


  141. Susan
    April 20, 2010 at 4:00 PM #

    Sorry I can’t help you out with a kidney. But my prayers are with you and even though you insurance is picking up most of the tab it will still be expensive. If there is a way to donate that would be wonderful. Or I could buy more fabric and thread. (mmmmmm)


  142. Dorene
    April 20, 2010 at 4:03 PM #

    Prayers, hugs and an offer of a kidney. I am O+ and will gladly share. Just need to know what I have to do to be tested.


  143. April 20, 2010 at 4:24 PM #

    Mark – you are in my prayers. I’m an AB+ person, so can’t help there. God bless you and your family and I look forward to hearing you’ll get your transplant and have many, many happy years ahead.


  144. Luann
    April 20, 2010 at 4:26 PM #

    Mark I am praying for an excellent outcome! Know that you are loved. Take good care of yourself. Positive Thoughts bring Positive Results!


  145. Leanne
    April 20, 2010 at 4:29 PM #

    Mark, you are in my thoughts and prayers. Last month we celebrated the 10th anniversary of my Mom’s kidney transplant! It hasn’t been easy or perfect, but she has had 10 years of quality living, thanks to a donor and her family. I also have PKD, and like you, am pretty much symptom-free. I do keep close watch on it though, and realize that one day I will probably be where you are. Just remember, transplants are miracles, and you are deserving of one!


  146. April 20, 2010 at 4:32 PM #

    Mark, you don’t know me so let me tell you a bit about myself. I am a Spanish long arm quilter that lives in Spain. I have been following you on facebook for more than a year and you mean a lot to me, well, I guess I should say to many many many people. You’ve made me smile some days when I couldn’t, you’ve made my days more than you can imagine. You are such an inspiration to me. I want to be like you when I “grow up”.
    I wish all the best in this “adventure” and I am sure you will find a donor pretty soon. In the meantime, you will be in my prayers.
    Take care,


  147. April 20, 2010 at 4:34 PM #

    You’ve done great thus far by taking care of yourself. Feel free to bitch, whine and cry. Anyone who has a chronic condition that says they don’t ever do that is lying. You are beloved by many. Your sense of humor and wit will carry you far through this process. Lots of love,


  148. Janet W.
    April 20, 2010 at 5:13 PM #

    I am in shock and feeling very sad after reading your blog. I found myself not feeling 100% in late January, one month ago I found out I have cancer. For three of those weeks I thought my days were short. It is a strange feeling. I made my end of life preparations. Although, now, after seeing an oncologist, seems I could have a little longer. I hope and pray a lot longer. My thoughts and prayers are with you Mark. You, Jeff and Evan. You have given so many peole so much joy. I pray, and I know, all will go well for you. You are in my thought and prayers. Hugs and Blessings, Janet


  149. Kim Buterbaugh
    April 20, 2010 at 5:16 PM #

    Mark, my prayers are with you, as always! God loves you, my friend, and He will get you through this! Let me know if there is anything else I can do to help. I’m here for you. You are very special to all of us.


  150. jeanine
    April 20, 2010 at 5:20 PM #

    Floored absolutely floored.
    Remember your pillow:
    Believe in miracles!
    Sorry I am AB+.But with all the people you know there should be a donor in the not too far future.
    Janitor at my school had a kidney transplant, from his wife. He has been back to the job, does not take any time off.


  151. Vicki
    April 20, 2010 at 5:46 PM #

    Mark, darling man, you are loved by so many who would do anything to help you. I wish I still lived in NJ so I could bring you food. Lots of love and positive thoughts are being sent to you, Jeff, and Evan.


  152. Weezer
    April 20, 2010 at 6:01 PM #

    Wishing you the very best, always! You have been such a source of happiness for so many, may the universe return the favor many times over.

    A positive attitude is very important. Find a highly skilled medical team that shares your positive attitude and works with you to achieve the goal.

    I know professionally that over the last 15 years, there have been may advances in the field of anti-rejection medications.Medications now are more effective and the adverse effects can be managed. The American Kidney Foundation will be a great resource. Seek Information. Also, studies show sassy people do better when ill.

    We are all saying prayers for your good health. Who else would call us cupcake?


  153. Sue George
    April 20, 2010 at 6:02 PM #

    So sorry to hear your news, Mark. I KNOW exactly how you feel as I was told nearly 5 years ago last month that I had kidney cancer. They took it out and I’ve been doing fine since. I’m SURE that you’ll find a donor! Wish I could be the one, but only have one left 🙂 Enjoy your lemonade because the day before the surgery, they won’t let you have any. Hang in there!


  154. Tonya
    April 20, 2010 at 6:59 PM #

    So sorry to hear about this Mark…how does one find out if they’re compatible?? I’m O-….


  155. Shannon
    April 20, 2010 at 7:27 PM #


    Many prayers and lots of love to you and yours. I too would like to know how you to become a possible kidney donor. Is there a website that we can go to or anything? I don’t know much about the process.


  156. April 20, 2010 at 7:35 PM #

    Wow – My son has PKD we found out about it when he was 16. He’s now 24 and thankfully his kidneys are holding there own. One kidneys is worse than the other. I’ll hope/pray that you can find a donor. I also pray that if and when this time comes for my son that we’d be able to find a donor. Sending good thought your way. Let’s find a CURE for this horrible disease…..


  157. Jan
    April 20, 2010 at 8:19 PM #

    Good things happen to good people — therefore you Will find a donor soon, and you Will recover and live a full life. (You will also go on Oprah and tell your story and inspire many who have similar challenges to face life with determination and humor).


  158. Annie
    April 20, 2010 at 8:54 PM #

    I’ll pray for you, your family and your quick recovery. Your post brought me to tears for several reasons.
    First, because you and your family have to go through this.
    Second, because I was one of those people who found the lump (at 33 years old) and have experienced all that goes with this type of diagnosis. I am happy to say that I am a 15 year survivor and a much stronger person for it.
    And third, because you have recently inspired me to follow my heart and dreams. I saw you speak not long ago and left feeling like I could do anything. You are such an inspiration and great guy. I look forward to enjoying you a very long time. Thank you!


    • April 20, 2010 at 11:14 PM #

      LOL Be careful what you wish for! LOL Great news about the beating the cancer, eh? xoxom


  159. kim mik
    April 20, 2010 at 8:55 PM #

    Hi Mark – My husband has polycystic kidney disease as well. It runs in his family and his mother was on dialysis for 25 years (refused transplant). He was transplanted 10 years ago and has had very few problems since. He was in the hospital for 24 hours and has been well managed ever since.
    I wish you well in your treatments and search.


    • April 20, 2010 at 11:12 PM #

      What amazing news. Just what I needed to hear! xoxom


  160. April 20, 2010 at 9:10 PM #

    First of all, I thought you WERE 39 now. 😉

    I am sending good thoughts your way for a donor and hope that Jeff or someone close to you will be the one. I also hope it happens soon. I am so pleased with all of the good things that have happened to you lately. I think that this is just another challenge that you will overcome.

    Best regards,


  161. Ida Lively
    April 20, 2010 at 9:19 PM #


    So sorry to hear about your PKD. I lost an ‘unborn’ grandchild to this horrible disease. It’s genetic … both parents have it … the ‘rare’ form … and the chances that the parents would ‘create’ another child with PKD as severe as what took the life of Riley, is 1 in 4. They’re now afraid to try again to have another baby ….

    I wish you the best in your search.



  162. Jeanette
    April 20, 2010 at 11:45 PM #

    There are some links here, one from Mark on the disease, and some I found about donors! Hope it helps someone, somewhere!


  163. April 21, 2010 at 12:07 AM #

    My thoughts and karma go out to you. An acqantaince of mine is on her 2nd kidney transplant and its been 15 years already. It’s hard but I doubt you’ll have a problem. Keep smilin’ Oh, and you forgot the vodka in the lemonade. Never drink it without it!! 🙂


  164. Machelle
    April 21, 2010 at 3:01 AM #

    After I stopped getting chocked up on my tears…for you,Jeff,and Evan ,my next thought was this really blows!(Sorry I don’t mean to offend anyone that is really what thought popped in) You have inspired me in many ways beyond quilting. I have always appreciated your honesty and transparency in your articles,blog,Pickle posse surveys,rants,live class”performances” updates, and as someone in the quilting world who is a respector of all types of people. I am a nurse and have taken care of very few patients in the past 26years with PCK,the ones I recall,in my limited experience with this disease,have done remarkably well post transplant. I will keep all of you in my prayers.This is a rough road to be on,but not an impossible one.My heart aches for all. Will be on your team any day(Never got picked for many other teams!!)


  165. Trenia
    April 21, 2010 at 3:12 AM #

    Love this! I’m kind of in the same boat as far as feeling pretty good. I’m one of the lucky ones. I’m in renal failure according to my nephrologist. I’m still working fulltime, not doing dialysis, just waiting on my insurance company to decide where to send my for a transplant evaluation.Hope all continues to do wll for you.
    Take care~


  166. Lesley
    April 21, 2010 at 11:40 AM #

    Dear Mark – so very sorry to hear this news – and love the positive attitude. I want you to know how many of us have thought of you as we use our beautiful chuppah at weddings. My son Adam was married under it, and Lois’ son will be married under it this October. My husband is working with a group on this disease – but the research is slow and far from answers. I will keep you posted if anything comes up that could help. We will post this far and wide to help you …
    love and prayers from all your fans and friends in West Morris.


  167. Margie Veon
    April 21, 2010 at 12:22 PM #

    Dear Mark, I opened your blog expecting some news about a new undertaking! What a shock but as all the Pickles said we are all with you all the way with prayers and good thoughts. Keep up your good old Pgh. spirit- we never give up!! Love to you and Jeff and Evan. Margie


  168. Sue Reed
    April 21, 2010 at 1:52 PM #

    Wow, life is sure an adventure isn’t it? So sorry to hear your news – its not what anyone wants to have to deal with and certainly not what you had planned for. Your attitude is fantastic and will surely help you through this, but its okay if you sometimes want to throw that damn pitcher of lemonade across the room. 🙂 But thank god you & your doctor decided to do that blood test. Hang in there sweetie, my prayers are with you.


  169. susan j gill
    April 21, 2010 at 2:48 PM #

    if you can’t get a direct donor I hope you can get into a group kidney exchange kind of like a round robin quilt exchange but with kidneys best wishes, prayers, hope, and love


    • Maggie Magee
      April 21, 2010 at 8:25 PM #

      Dear Mark–When I read your message last night about your having this disease–first it shocked and saddened me, but then made me think about what a fearless leader you are: your sense of humor and wit, your talent– have added so much to our lives–and so much joy! I am keeping good thoughts in my heart for you and your family. I talked to you a couple of years ago when you called me in reponse to my message that I had not received my Quilter’s Home magazine that particular month. I knew then what a giving and caring man you are–you are the real deal! You are certainly an inspiration, Great Pickle, and we are all with you and filled with hope that you will get a donor very soon. We love you, Mark!


  170. Cathy Cameron
    April 21, 2010 at 3:05 PM #

    Sorry to hear your news. Keep up your positive attitude..donors can suddenly pop up from the strangest places. My thoughts and prayers are with you.
    P.S. agree with Sue Reed…throw the lemonade or something to relieve a little of the stress.


  171. jb
    April 22, 2010 at 4:21 AM #

    Sorry to here you news. I recently had a kidney transplant because of female failure due to PKD. The drug protocol is not bad at all and does not effect your life much at all. For great education on PKD check out there are also local chapters that may be able to provide education and support.


  172. April 23, 2010 at 9:40 PM #

    Oh Mark –
    I don’t know what to say.
    Leave it to you to deliver this sad and sudden news with humor and recipes 😉
    I’m sure there are a herd of posse girls lined up to get tested and help – keep us posted.
    I’d love to help, but one of my kidneys is slightly malformed (found accidentally in an MRI, unrelated to the kidneys). I guess I have to keep my other one in reserve……
    I’ll keep you in my thoughts, friend.


  173. Rose-Marie
    April 24, 2010 at 12:48 AM #

    Hello Mark,

    I am so sorry. I hope you find that donor soon. You have such a vibrant personality. The world needs you. We wish you and your family all the best life gives at this time.



  174. Christine Ricart
    April 24, 2010 at 7:10 PM #

    I am so sorry to hear of your health issues. You have been an inspiration and a bright ray of sunlight in this stodgy world full of “Quilt Police”! Keep up the good work, keep smiling- our warm hugs and constant prayers go out to you. God Bless!


  175. Susan
    April 25, 2010 at 2:30 AM #

    Dear Mark, know that you are loved, very much, by all of us!
    And know that love has power. Lots of power. Really.
    Miracles can and do happen. I’m not just sayin’ that, I mean it. Know it.
    You’ll pull this off.
    Wished I could be there to hold you and rock you in my arms. It’s hard to be the sick one and have to be the brave strong one all at the same time but it seams that’s how life deals the cards, and doesn’t even provide us with a stinking suggestion box!
    Much love and hugs 🙂


  176. Nicki Coppersmith
    April 25, 2010 at 3:03 PM #

    I am O+ I will gladly donate a kidney if I have the requirements. Please let me know what I need to do.



  177. Carin
    April 26, 2010 at 10:26 AM #

    Mark I am so sorry to hear of your needing a kidney transplant. I know this is hard on you, Jeff and Evan. Am keeping all of you in my prayers for improved health and finding a donor. Healing energy and white light are being sent to you….


  178. Diane
    April 27, 2010 at 12:46 AM #

    Chin up, my friend. I have friends and relatives that are recipients of donated kidneys. True, the hard part is finding a donor and going through the transplant. They are back living their wonderful wacky lives again. Your kidney could be just around the corner….no joke. My cousin tried to get a match from the entire family, no luck. Her donor turned out to be her next door neighbor – who’d a thunk?! Go borrow a cup of sugar, sugar. Wishing you a speedy match, prodecure, and recovery. – Di


  179. Harriet Campbell
    April 27, 2010 at 1:01 AM #

    Mark sorry to hear about the problems with your kidneys. I have lupus and have had it for 19 years they said like when I found out I had this is it will attack the kidney liver heart lungs so I have to keep up with my health.About 3 years ago I found that I have RA also but I just keep plugging along. Good luck to you and will keep you in my prays Happy


  180. Paula
    April 27, 2010 at 10:09 AM #

    Mark, my best wishes to you. I gave a kidney to my husband 6 years ago, and would donate again if I could! If Jeff is able to donate, he will find it will be one of the best things he has ever done. We are here to lend an ear if you want.


  181. linda
    April 27, 2010 at 8:05 PM #

    I just stumbled across this today and am SHOCKED. My prayers are with you and all of the people who love you. I’m glad I found this site, cause I have been missing your humor and unique take on life.

    Also, I would like to respond to the note from Carole Lakomec regarding her grand-daughter being diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. If you would like to correspond with me Carole, send me an email at Must sound strange huh; but I’m not a crazy person, just a quilter, well, maybe that does been I’m crazy LOL 🙂



  182. Granny Fran
    April 28, 2010 at 3:59 AM #

    God bless you, comfort you and heal you. With your great attitude you are a born winner!


  183. April 28, 2010 at 6:40 AM #

    Mark, I’m sorry to hear your hard news. My own father has PKD, as does my older brother. Both have had transplants and are doing fantastically. It is remarkable how far treatment has come, even in the last 15 years, between my father’s and my brother’s surgeries — truly remarkable. I pray that you and your family will receive excellent care and support, and will have a wonderfully-successful outcome.
    xo–Heather Bailey


  184. April 28, 2010 at 7:00 AM #

    Thinking goods thoughts for you and for all who love you – and you love. I love your spirit and your wickedly delicious humor, Mark. Go kick some kidney ass!


  185. Mary Dombrowski
    April 28, 2010 at 4:07 PM #

    Hey Mark,

    Dude, I’m an O negative, and I live in the Lehigh Valley. Don’t know if my hubbie would agree with me on donating a kidney, but hey, he’s not here today! LOL Seriously, I think you’re wonderful, and can’t help but wonder if I have the cojones to help you, and if it’s even medically possible for me to help you. What are the other medical requirements?

    Drop me a line, I check my email everyday.




  186. Paula
    April 28, 2010 at 11:03 PM #

    Mark your attitude and love of life will help you pull through this I am sure.
    I will put you in my prayers.


  187. joanie
    April 29, 2010 at 3:44 PM #

    This too you will make scraps of and I hope very quickly!


  188. Sheila
    May 2, 2010 at 2:41 PM #

    Hugs to you, Evan and Jeff. You’ll find that taking care of those around you who are falling apart over this horrible news will give you strength to carry on. I wish I was a match for you. Look on that blood test as a gift from God. What if you had not had it!!! I believe a donor will be found. The daughter of a dear friend just celebrated her 9th anniversary of her transplant and will be graduating from med school next month. Miracles happen, and I will pray that one happens for you soon!! Know that all of you are in my thoughts and prayers.


  189. Jamie
    May 4, 2010 at 3:47 AM #

    I was so shocked find out about what’s happening to you. I know we don’t know each other personally but reading your blog and having you as a friend on facebook I feel close to you and it just broke my heart to find this out. You, Jeff, and Evan are in my thoughts. Have a positive attitude and things will change for the better. My Aunt Susan was diagnosed with stage 4 Cervical Cancer and her doctor had a very positive attitude which in turn made her have a positive attitude. She did chemo and radiation treatments and now the tumor is completely gone. I know the situation is different but it goes to show what a positive attitude can do for your health. Anyways, hugs to you all and good luck in the search for a kidney donor!




  190. Lance Bukoff
    May 10, 2010 at 11:11 AM #

    Mark –

    A few comments –

    I suggest that you don’t refer to your blood type as O “negative”. Rh factor, as I understand it, is not a factor in determining whether a person can donate to another. So, although you have O neg blood, and O positive donor could potentially donate a kidney to you. That’s good news, since roughly 36% of human beings are O positive – add in the 5% or so that are O neg and you have a pretty good number of potential donors! But you don’t want someone with O positive blood to conclude that they can’t donate to yuo, when in fact they can.

    Also, if you haven’t already done so, educate yourself on paired kidney exchanges. Paired kidney exchanges allow willing but incompatible donor/recipient pairs to complete an exchange with one or more other willing but incompatible donor/recipient pairs. I don’t know about the Washington area, but in the Boston area there is a program known as the New England Program for Kidney Exchange ( Perhaps they can direct you to a more local program. When you find a donor, you’ll want to know as much as you can about paired exchanges in the event that you are incompatible on blood type or tissue cross-match.

    Mark, my wife has PKD. At the age of 56 she reached ESRD. I couldn’t donate for medical reasons, but we were blessed to have several people volunteer to be tested. One was cleared to donate. The one year anniversary of the surgery was just a few weeks ago, and both my wife and her donor are completely healthy and have prognoses for long, happy healthy lives.

    Finding a donor is a difficult, emotional process which can be cause anxiety and disappointment. If there’s anything we can do to help you, please let us know.



  191. Paula
    May 18, 2010 at 7:33 PM #

    Dearest Mark,

    I was so taken back with your announcement, reading your words truly took my breath away. I’m not sure I can even begin to imagine what you are going through; what you are thinking and how you and your loving family will cope.

    Laughter is the best medicine and we know that your light-hearted sense of humor, larger than life laugh and brilliant smile will help you as you go on this new adventure. It’s just a side-trip on the road we call Life. A side-trip that I PRAY you will conquer!

    Many prayers and good vibes coming your way. Please keep us posted and give Evan and Jeff a {{BIG HUG}} and then have them both give you an equally {{BIG HUG}}.

    Prayers & Blessings,
    Paula Z


  192. Jennifer Ewing
    May 18, 2010 at 9:28 PM #

    I have had one kidney since I was two (47 years) and have lived a very normal, active life. When my son was 21, on a routine exam, he was also found to have a kidney disease, IGA Nephropathy. Because it is autoimmune, it often comes back after transplant. Most people aren’t diagnosed until they are in renal failure usually in their 30’s. We were told that the best we could hope for was to slow the progression of the disease.

    Last January, completely out of the blue, my son was deemed in remission. What sweet words. We attributite totally to the power of prayer. He is in stage 3 renal failure but is immune system isn’t banging on his kidneys right now.

    Don’t ever lose hope because amazing things are happening all the time in the medical field. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.


  193. Rose Butler
    May 18, 2010 at 10:00 PM #

    HI Mark,
    I just wanted to tell you to put your trust in the Lord, because He can give you peace and eternal life if it doesn’t work out! I have been a cancer patient since 1997 and praise God I’m doing good! Jesus has totally changed my life and He keeps me everyday. I just had a treatment today and I get 2 every 3 months. I will be praying for you! Read John chapter 14, it will be a comfort to you! My Aunt had a bladder transplant a few years back and is doing terrific and my grandson, who is 7, is a heart patient and is doing great! The Lord answers prayer, so we’ll be praying. God Bless You ! Rose


  194. Mary Sell
    May 18, 2010 at 10:03 PM #

    The quilting world is sorry to hear that you have had such downer news. Hang in there—-lots of prayers and good luck is being sent your way! In these situations-every sunrise becomes a wonderful gift.


  195. Debbie Thornton
    May 18, 2010 at 10:28 PM #

    As a retired ICU nurse, I can only rejoice that you haven’t been symptomatic to this point. It is my desire that a compatable match is found soon and you are not on the transplant list long. I had a dear friend (24 years old) that had kidney failure secondary to auto immune vasculitis. She recieved a kidney in September and did fabulous! She said she didn’t know that she was feeling bad until she felt good! I am sure you will have a similar result! Hang in there, baby! This is just another patch in your quilt of life!


  196. Marie Gengarelli
    May 19, 2010 at 12:15 AM #


    My prayers and best wishes are with you. God is good and he will see to it that you get everything you and your loved ones need to get you through this horrible time. I’m sending you great big hugs and love. Be well my friend.



  197. Leslie Williams
    May 19, 2010 at 1:49 AM #

    I am a huge fan and so sorry to hear the news. Where are you geographically? I work at a medical center in Eastern NC where many transplants are done. The team of people who work in the transplant section of our School of Medicine are totally awesome and extremely knowledgeable about all aspects of ESRD. Unfortunately, we live in a very high incidence area, usually due to high blood pressure. I know that there are many resources out there for you. I am an A+, if that is any help? I wish you a speedy result in finding a donor, living or otherwise. You are an inspiration in so many ways, your humor and outlook will take you far as you battle this new hurdle.


  198. Karen Freeman
    May 19, 2010 at 3:08 AM #

    Mark, I am new to quilting and I love your show. Please be well soon, and know that many people hold you in their prayers.


  199. Diane Tucker
    May 19, 2010 at 12:28 PM #

    There is only one thing to do. Keep laughing!
    A donor will appear, and medical intervention will work. Think no other thoughts. I was in the audience in your Oklahoma City lecture and realized just how much your upbeat attitude means to so many, many people. You have touched lives in such positive ways, and your fans will all be willing to help. In fact, you’re on another prayer list now. Be strong but laugh. It is the best medicine.


  200. Lisann
    May 24, 2010 at 11:22 AM #

    Dear Mark,

    I am so sorry to hear the news that you are not well. I understand you need a donor who is either O- or A-. I just happen to be A- and am on the National Marrow Donor Program. I am registered at the NATIONAL DONOR PROGRAM at NORTHERN OHIO& INDIANA AREA, 2 Summit Park Drive, Suite 210, Cleveland Ohio 44131. Phone no# 888-862-7769. My donor # is 0394-8264-1. If I can be of any help.

    Lisann ( pronounced as if its Lisa Ann)


  201. dee daundivier
    May 25, 2010 at 11:20 PM #

    I am deeply sorry for you and your family. I wish I could give you mine. I have offered mine only in death as I have only one left. Had kidney problems as a child. I pray for your health and that there is a donnor for you. Love you and keep up your wonderful spirit, I know that a good attitude helps recovery. My laughter and prayers are with you every day. Dee


  202. Lynn
    May 27, 2010 at 8:08 PM #

    Gosh Mark, what tough news to get.

    Does remind me of how I felt going to sleep to have a routine heart cath and waking up as a post by-pass patient! Whew! Aalot to swallow all at once.

    I’m A negative but doubt you want a kidney that is already 65! ha ha

    Hope Lisann #200 above can work for you. Wouldn’t that be great to get a kidney from a quilting blog? Oh boy, I can see the headlines: “Quilting for Kidneys!”



  203. Kyle Ice
    July 17, 2010 at 2:34 AM #

    Mark, I’m so sorry to hear about your illness. I will keep you in my prayers. I have enjoyed you so much on Quilt Out Loud. I have just returned to the US after 8 years in Brazil and I looked forward to the internet quilt show as well as Quilter’s Home. You are an inspiration! Beijos! (kisses)


  204. Mary Beth Glover
    August 6, 2010 at 7:41 PM #


    I was shocked to read your news…I was diagnosed with severe juvenile rheumatoid arthritis when I was 13; at 18 they told me to go have fun because I wouldn’t make the age of 21. Guess what? I will be 59 in October…still have health issues, but functional and enjoying life… ATTITUDE when your are suffering from a serious medical condition is every thing and I KNOW you have the right attitude…my prayers are with you, Evan and Jeff.

    Mary Beth Glover
    Kerrville, TX


  205. Valerie
    August 30, 2010 at 3:57 PM #

    Wish I could help, but I only have one kidney myself. Hope you get one soon! My prayers are with you all. xoxoxo


  206. Kate
    April 15, 2011 at 4:03 AM #

    I am so sorry. THis week, I learned that my left kidney is not working and needs to come out. After living in severe pain due to seven years of kidney stone after kidney stone and a kidney infection since 2009, now on my third urologist….i was told that the problem has been that my kidney isn’t functioning. So stone formation is common, the liquid becomes stagnant from not coming out, voila. So, I now have answers after so much time, but also accordingly have new issues to come to terms with. Accepting this all, trying to stay working so I can keep my benefits is top priority at the moment. I am sorry to say, that had I been able to maintain two healthy kidneys, I would have gladly given you one Mark, as I too am an O Negative. Love, Kate


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