July 30, 2010

I still feel like a Twit.

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I joined in the #dsma chat on Twitter the other night. I have been on the odd chat here and there on the internet and even a few that I thought went fast. Nope.

I tell ya straight up I have never seen any online chat moving so fast. I think there were about a million people on, maybe more. It was crazy. Posts were flying. People agreed, disagreed and were funny. There were great point made and new friends found.

Oh and I need to find a better Twitter tool for chat because what ever I was using wasn't tough enough to keep it going smoothly. It was awesome. See y'all next week.

Scott Johnson on FFL

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Scott Johnson's FFL Newbie 24/Seven Video is up at theBetesNOW.com. Like most newbie Scott became an advocate of Friends For Life and he is now working with Jeff and Laura to help further define conference material for adults with diabetes. Help Scott out at his blog post FFL for adults share your ideas.

July 29, 2010

WaveSense App Demo

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theBetesNOW.com has a video demo of WaveSense's iPad / iPhone app is up. Cool. They taped WaveSense at Friends For Life.  Makes me want an iPad even more.  Oh and a cable as soon as they are available.  Check it out.




My review (much less cool than the video)  of the WaveSense app is here.

July 27, 2010

Crystal Jackson in an Online Discution on Diabetes at School

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School is hard enough without diabetes being an unholy pain in the butt too. Crystal is ADA's queen of school issues.

Make life easier for yourself and join her and MyCareConnect for an online "Back-to-School" planning discussion on Monday, August 2nd at 9:00 PM (ET). It free and given Crysrtal's wealth of knowledge that make this a steal. However even a steal has it's limits and in this case it is space that is limited so for more information and to sign up go to https://www.mycareconnect.com/back2school.aspx

Here's Crystal kindly doing a segment for theBetesNOW.com


theBetes:Now 24/7 - ADA On Schools from thebetes now on Vimeo.

I'm a Twit

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... or at least Twitter makes me feel like the Twit of the Year.
The Diabetes Online Community is alive and well on Twitter.  I miss a good deal of it because I am Twitter impaired.  I am just not very good at it.  Fortunately there are others who are creating exciting dialogs on Twitter and they are kind enough to help folks like me out speciffically Cherise Shockley who writes at http://www.diabetesdaily.com/shockley/.  You may be like me somewhat Twitter impaired and she will help you too.

She runs a weekly question and answer session on twitter.  Here is a little primer she wrote for me which is coincidentally a convenient question and answer format:


Bennet
Cherise I hear you run a weekly live diabetes conversation on Twitter. I am real week on my Twitter skills. What is this all about?

Cherise
I moderate a weekly Question and Answer about diabetes for 1 hour each week on Wednesday night. The questions will address topic's such as exercise, diet, endocrinologist, CDE's and meter accuracy--just to name a few. We blog about it, why not tweet about it...1 hour a week...3 questions and a whole lot of live responses!! This is another way We the DOC (Diabetes Online Community) can educate, spread awareness and promote advocacy via Twitter.

Bennet
I don’t use Twitter a lot or very well. I don’t have a lot of connections there so how do I, (or if there is anyone even less skilled at at Twitter than me, we) join in?

Cherise
Well first you need to go to www.twitter.com to create an account.  If you like, I could be your first friend, search @DiabetesSocMed.  Once you are following me, I will follow you back.  When you make updates, I'll be able to see them and vice versa and you'll be able to send me a direct message (DM)

Bennet
OK even I can do that but how do I join your conversation? Do I have to follow everyone ?

Cherise
Let me explain a little about hash tags, Twitter hash tags are pretty much like a directory of sorts, they make the conversations easy to follow.  You do not have to follow anyone to participate in #dsma (diabetes social media advocacy).  All you have to do is update your status with #dsma.    Example:  Q1.  I do not agree. #dsma 

Bennet

OK so I sign up. I find you and follow you. Then I send a update or message with this this tag thing. How do I send a a comment to everyone?  They don’t know me at all?

Cherise
If you follow me and you are a part of the DOC.  I will send a tweet out to everyone who is following me to let them know you are new on twitter and to please follow you.  but there is an easier way... follow a few people from the DOC and I am sure you'll get followed back.

Bennet
Cool when is the next conversation?

Cherise
Wednesday's at 9 PM EST. I am excited! I hope you all will join us last week we had  77 people join in.  The response was amazing! the more the merrier.

July 23, 2010

D-Feast Friday - Dijon Rack 0f Lamb

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What we make for Mrs. YMDV's birthday (a.k.a. Christmas Eve.)

2 racks lamb
1/2 cup Dijon Mustard
4 Garlic cloves
hand full of fresh rosemary
teaspoon kosher salt
Tablespoon white balsamic vinegar

Mince the garlic and rosemary put it in a food processor with the dijon salt and vinegar and process till well mixed.

Coat the lamb and stand at room temp for 30 - 45 minutes. Heat oven to 450 and roast until rare about 20 minutes but this stuff is pricey a warrants a thermometer to avoid over cooking. Rest under foil for 15 minutes - almost as long as it cooked. Cut into individual ribs and enjoy.

I doubt there will be any left over but of there is, it will be killer good chilled.

D-Feast Friday Index

D-Feast Friday - Orange Chicken

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Here's a hugely popular item at our house:

Orange Chicken

Pat dry a few Chicken Breasts, boneless. Rub on a health coat of 16 spice (see below.)

Sear in a hot pan with a little oil - 2 minutes a side. Darken but not blacken the dry rub.

After both sides are nicely seared fill the pan about 3/4 the way up the chicken breast with orange juice. Poach the chicken as the OJ reduces turning occasionally. Pull the chicken and reduce the OJ to 1/3 or so the original volume. Thicken with a little cornstarch in a cold water slurry. The sauce will pick up a lot of the 16 spice.

Slice the chicken thin. Zest orange and squeeze a little fresh orange juice on the chicken. Serve with the reduces and thickened OJ as a sauce.

As long as you have the 16 spice on hand this is way simple, fast and crowd pleasing. I serve with rice and the orange sauce is good on the rice too.

I keep  Bobby Flay’s 16 spice Rub ready at all times. I think I would put it on corn flakes if I ate them.

Bobby Flay 16 Spice.
3 tablespoons ancho chile powder
3 tablespoons pasilla chile powder
3 tablespoons ground cumin
3 tablespoons ground coriander
3 tablespoons ground ginger
2 tablespoons garlic powder
2 tablespoons onion powder
1 tablespoon allspice
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon ground fennel seed
1 teaspoon chile de arbol
3 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

D-Feast Friday Index 

D-Feast Friday - White Chili

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1 pound large white beans (you can sort and soak or use pre-soaked great northern beans)
6 cups chicken broth
1 clove minced garlic
1 - 2 medium onions finely chopped
1 Tablespoon oil
2 4-oz cans of chopped mild green chilies
1 and 1/2 - 2 Teaspoons of cumin
1 1/2 teasponn oregano
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 cups diced cooked chicken breast
3 cups grated monteray jack cheese
salsa
sour cream


Combine beans and broth in a large soup pot.  Bring to a boil. (not necessary if you use
pre-soaked beans.)  Add more broth or water as necessary.

In a skillet, sautee onions in the oil until tender.  Add chilies and seasonings and mix
thoroughly.  Add to bean mixture.  Add chicken and simmer one hour.

Serve topped with grated cheese, salsa and sour cream.

** If you desire a thicker base, mash some beans before adding to broth.

D-Feast Friday Index 

D-Feast Friday - Pineapple Chicken Chili

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Pineapple Chicken Chili

3 or 4 chicken breasts cut to ¾” cubes
1 large sweet onion
2 tablespoons cooking oil
2 - 20 oz cans chunk pineapple
2 – 12 oz tomato paste
1- 28 oz can diced tomato
3 – 12 oz can small beans
3 tablespoons ancho chili powder*
3 tablespoons garlic powder*
1 tablespoon passila chili powder* (or more ancho or cayenne if you can’t find passila)
1 tablespoon cayenne chili
2 teaspoons paprika *
1 teaspoons ginger powder*
3-4 fine chopped jalapeño peppers*

*Your taste may vary so maybe work your way up if your not a fan of hot.

Dice the onion and sauté in a large pot in the cooking oil to translucent. Toss in the chicken and the syrup from the cans of pineapple. Reserve the pineapple chucks. Poach the chicken in the pineapple syrup until cooked through.

Mix in the cans of tomato, tomato paste, beans. Mix in the amount of the spices your comfortable with. You can always ad more. Let it all simmer for a few hours. If you’re not getting a nice back of the throat heat, add more chili. Add the pineapple.

The sweetness of the pineapple chunks will temper some of the heat of the finished product. So will some sour cream.

D-Feast Friday Index 

D-Feast Friday - Caesar’s Steak

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This is a big favorite at local Appetizer and Dessert parties. We serve it as a main dish typically but hey we needed a winner for the party. Considering all the hunters at the party with the great cuts of game, I was honored to place with a beef dish. (We did well with some Chocolate Stout home brew at the party once too. I think it was ‘cause it was strong and people were getting light headed on the stuff.)

It is great cold with horseradish and that is how I serve it as an appetizer.

Flank Steak or two.
3/4 cup A1
3/4 cup Worcestershire Sauce
3/4 cup Ken’s low fat Caesar’s Salad dressing (low fat has less oil and so it flairs up less on the grill)
1 (or more) table spoons Garlic powder
½ to 1 cup Grated Romano cheese

A day or two before you are going to cook put every thing in a big zip lock bag. Put in the refrigerator. When ever you go in the frig squish things around.

Fire up the grill and let it get hot. Pour the marinade off the meat and into a pan on the stove. Turn on the heat and boil the marinade. You are going to use this as a sauce and you have to kill any bacteria from the raw meat. Stir regularly to keep from burning.

Grill the steak. I do three minutes a side. Take it off well before it is the level of “done” you like. It keeps cooking while resting off and it is our opinion that rare for this dish is better.

Don’t forget to stir the sauce.

Take the steak of and let it rest a few minutes. This lets it cool and the juices are drawn back into the meat.

The sauce should be safe now, turn off the heat.

Carve thin slices across the grain.

Serve with the sauce.

---- or -----

Put it some slices back into the refrigerator. Roll the chilled slices up around a dab of nice hot horse radish. I hold them rolled up with a tooth pick. Serve as an appetizer. Typically I present them in a cast iron fry pan rolled up like wild west sushi, sitting in the sauce. Although for a more formal dinner party I have served them as strips on a few pieces of Romaine lettuce garnished with onion, red peppers and dressed with the sauce.

Of course if you make two you can do both.

D-Feast Friday Index 

July 22, 2010

Great Minds...

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 ...Blog Alike.

Ginger Vieira has a great entry up today about speaking up for yourself with your health care providers. Yesterday I had the pleasure of highlighting Bob Fenton piece on being prepared for the hospital which was very similar. While Connor was having his appendix pulled out his belly button I wrote along the same lines.

I am sure there are a bunch of other closely related comments out there.

In fact I read Kerri's whole type 1 pregnancy and resulting happy, extremely cute (I have seen the kid and that may be an understatement) baby series and a first hand account of working with your doctors while not blindly following them. That there is a really good point.

In the very first post I wrote for YDMV (second posted) I wrote;

After a while of this the guy next to me, Mark, said something so brilliant it stopped me cold. He said, and this is a close as I can get to a quote;

‘My wife and I are our daughter’s primary care team.'

Doing!

That may have been the single best sentence of the week. I would say we hold these truths to be self evident but it obviously wasn’t evident to anyone else in the room until he said it. Then there was unanimous support for the idea.
Be your primary care giver.

FTNW: MannKind Resumbits Afrezza

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Inhaled Insulin Resubmitted to FDA.

MannKind Corporation (NASDAQ:MNKD) announced that it has submitted, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted, MannKind's resubmission of its New Drug Application (NDA) for AFREZZA™ (insulin human [rDNA origin]) and classified it as a Class 2 resubmission. With the Class 2 designation, the FDA set a corresponding Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) action date of December 29, 2010.
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/195474.php

It is said this insulin peaks at 14 to 14 minutes. That is interesting.

As a side note, I find it faster to read Scott S's Tweets than my news reader for news like this. Thanks Scott.

July 21, 2010

Check out Bob's Bit on Hospitals

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Friend of YDMV and fellow diabetes blogger Bob Fenton wrote a nice piece that lays out clear steps for thinking about hospitalization, hopefully before it is an issue. Bob must have been a boy scout as he spells out how to be prepared.

http://bobsdiabetes.blogspot.com/2010/07/hospitalization-concerns-for-persons.html

Nice Job. Thanks Bob.

July 16, 2010

FTNW: Diamyd Agreement Approval

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Diamyd Agreement Receives Antitrust Clearance
Diamyd Medical AB has received antitrust clearance that closes the transaction announced on June 22, 2010 with Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (OMJPI), a Johnson & Johnson company. 
The US Federal Trade Commission's clearance under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Anti-Trust Improvements Act is regarding the agreement between Diamyd and OMJPI for development and world-wide commercialization of the GAD65 antigen-based therapy (Diamyd®) for the treatment and prevention of type 1 diabetes and associated conditions.  
http://www.diamyd.com/docs/pressClip.aspx?section=investor&ClipID=503738

Speaking of Driving

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These are awesome. Always have glucotabs.






The Ninjas are next.

Crash Test Dummy

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Raise you hand if you put a car into a ditch or other immovable object off the side of the road as a teenager.

I did.

I was cut off on a highway and ran a perfectly good VW Bug into an Exxon sign pillar. The sign was fine. I popped the windshield off the car with my head and it flew 20 feet in the air, bounced and landed unbroken. The windshield did best. I went to the hospital and the Bug went to the scrap heap.

I loved that car.

It was the American dream in a old German car. It was slow. It was noisy.  The heater didn’t work very well, when it worked at all.  But it was freedom. It would go anywhere and, bonus, it fit on sidewalks. However the statute of limitations on some those sidewalk missions may still not have expired so enough said.

It would’ve been nice to miss the sign.

My T1 son is learning to drive. It would be nice for him to miss the sign too and to stay off sidewalks.

Some of all of y’all (a phrase that here means "In select cities"), can get free hands on training to miss the sign and stay off sidewalks.

Medtronic is sponsoring a free driving program for diabetic teens. It is called Test B4U Drive.

If you are skeptical, I understand. I thought “Test B4U” sounds like diabetes preachiness dressed in text messaging slang trying to be cool. I too was a tad skeptical. I mean I am an American Male and therefor endowed by the creator with certain unalienable rights like life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Hello! I am sure that by that Thomas Jefferson meant driving.

Also it means that my American Maleness grants me presumed naturally superior driving abilities that I can passed on to my son both genetically and spiritually. (Your Honor. I move the testimony of the Exxon sign be excluded on the grounds that it is a sign and so has no business commenting on my natural American Maleness driving superiority.)

I mentioned the class to my son and he responded with the comment that the driving session at Friends for Life a few years back was an extremely boring lecture, where they just sat there and listened to some dude drone on. This is what I call this the Charlie Brown’s Teacher Syndrome   “Wa WAA wa Waa WaWa.” (C.B.T.S. - you know I love the four letter acronyms.)

The folks at Medtronic were kind enough to talk with me about the program today. They rolled out their big guns, Dr. Francine R. Kaufman, Chief Medical Officer and Vice President and Amanda Sheldon, Director of Public Relations. You put three people on the phone that are passionate about diabetes care and we tent to all talk at the same time. We did somehow sort out taking turns. 

I asked them straight up how they were going to avoid CBTS with an all day deal for teens? I can’t pay attention for 7 minutes how are they gonna get teens to pay attention for 7 hours?

(I can hear regular YDMV readers saying, “Hey Bennet the T1 teens are probably more mature than you are!” Probably that Kerri chick and her pal Christel. Those two are trouble with a capital T of course that's why I love'm.)

I digress. Back to Test B4U Drive. First of all driving is a topic near and dear to the teenage heart so that should help get attention. (How else can you explain the American Dream in a German car above.) Next while there is some diabetes stuff and there will be an actual endo at each session the organizers get that the day is about cars. So they will also have professional diving instructors at each session. Instructors - plural. One instructor to three teens. 1:3.

The day will be mostly driving and only some classroom. They said it is like six hours playing and one hour of classroom time and it sounds like there is fun stuff to do in the cars. Hard breaking, avoidance maneuvering and my personal favorite skidding! (but not into an Exxon sign - avoiding now there is a concept... )

Medtronic is in the program with the Juvenile Diabetes No Limits Foundation, who I had never heard of. The good folks at Medtronic explained it a group based in Minnesota lat is supports T1 kids living full lives. Cool. I think they said something about the founder being a car racer. Even more coolness.

Test B4U Drive is being offered to teens with diabetes at these select locations, none near me, in 2010, 15 kids to a class:
  • July 19-21, The Forum, Los Angeles
  • July 26-28, Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, Commerce City, Colo. (Denver area)
  • August 2-4, KCI Expo Center, Kansas City, Mo.
  • August 9-11, Standard Bank Stadium, Crestwood, Ill. (Chicago area)
Yeah they may mention diabetes care and some of Medtronic’s products and/or services but they are also gonna let you go beat up err.. play no wrong word again... learn in a rental car. That’s a fair deal.

For more information see: http://www.medtronicdiabetes.com/testb4udrive/

July 15, 2010

Jumping in with Amy

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Amy has a piece up on data systems and I thought i would jump on the bandwagon with a re-run. This is a previously aired YDMV bit. Summer is like that you get re-runs.  I hope it helps sound a call for data interoperability. (Sorry. I'll stop using big words like that now.)

Swimming in the Data Stream Looking for the UN. (Aug '07) 
or Becoming a Commie Pinko

Type 1 isn’t all about the numbers. It is about kids (and adults) living their lives. That said there are one hell of a lot of numbers. We gotta deal with the numbers, so we can love the kids (and adults) as kids (and adults). Nobody need love the numbers.

There are a ton of little electronic machines that produce billions and billions of numbers (and about as many strips on the floor.) At times it seems we are floundering in a sea of data points (and strips on the floor.) Unfortunately each machine speaks its own language. What we need is the UN. United Numbers.
Brenard responded to my post ...and I would like a side order of Holy Grail while I am at it too
saying:
One of the key parts to this (and the thing I've been preaching about for a while) is a unified data standard for diabetes data. Something that all device makers (pumps, meters, CGMS) follow. That would make it possible to actually take data from several devices and combine it into a single package for graphing and analysis.
Doing!
Brenard is brilliant. Bernard for President. (The heck with that constitutional provision about natural born citizen as long as he doesn't change us to left side of the road driving.)

Everyone at FFL with any kind of a {in my best Monty Python imitation} ‘Machine that goes PING’ (by the way when I wrote this Animas hadn't named a pump after a Monty Pyton bit yet) was touting some kind of undefined wireless connectivity to some tool that alerts someone, most likely the doctor, (who is way too busy with patients in the office to be taking PINGs from machines that go PING.) I call this the machine that listens to the machine that goes PING and tells someone else.
 
In one of these sessions we got to talking about the school setting. One guy said there were three, count'm THREE, pumpers in his daughter’s one classroom. Wow!

So the big idea of the focus group was this new undefined machine that listens to the machine that goes PING and tells someone else could alerts the nurse if one of the three kids in the class was trending south.

How techie cool would that be?

But wait! What if each kid is wearing a different pump and CGM?

Does the school have to buy three different machines that listens to the machine that goes PING and tells someone else? One that listens in each of the three different languages, that each of the different machines that all go PING speak?

Or do three different insurance companies have to pony up (fat chance.)

Sounds a wee bit inefficient to me. It is like every machine is it own nation.

Imagine if we could get all these different Nations United or at least talking. We need the UN!
If all the machines that go PING spoke the same language then one machine in the classroom could listen to any manufacturers’ device and call the school nurse.

Just think, all the manufacturers could all reduce the cost of R&D spent on the machine that listens to the Machine that goes PING if they didn’t each have to invent a new language in the process. Hey guys in expensive suits! Lower expenses means more profits and bigger bonuses for the guys in expensive suits or they could then invest that saved R&D money into better design, clearer user interfaces and compete on usability! Yeah I think it would go to bonuses too.

Anyway - Bernard for President of the UN!

I look at it like this, there are a standards for a USB port, bluetooth, driving on the right side of the road. Well OK there is the whole UK exception for the last one but you get my point ...well Bernard may not.

I know that some companies want to invent the wheel, patent it and keep others from rolling. Who gets hurt in this deal they say - we invent the spoked wheel, we should have exclusive rights to it.
I’ll tell ya who get hurt – kids - maybe two of the three kids in the classroom. It is the kids’ data transmitted through We the People’s spectrum. There is an interest here that takes precedence.
OK call me a communist - I want to see a Reaganesque rising tide that lifts all boats.

I did promise to write a number of medical companies a letter about this when I was bending their corporate ears at FFL.

Think they will like this?

Maybe I should write my congresswoman too. I think I'll skip the commie pinko part in her letter and maybe the Regan bit. She's a D.

July 12, 2010

theBetesNow Sighting

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We are just back from Orlando. After FFL we had a little fun games and fireworks. We come home to see that one of theBetesNow.com videos we made at Friends For Life is featured on the American Diabetes Association's home page. WoHoo!

theBetesNow is by and for people living with type 1. Our goal is to share short often humorous bits that are not Charlie Brown's teacher. You know, "Wa Waa Wa WAA Wa wa Wa WA."

Maybe an example will help:


theBetes:Now Top 7 - Least Likely Places to Find a Test Strip 2 from thebetes now on Vimeo.

 
Thanks ADA for joining in with a little less frivolous bit on school safety, I grabbed a screen capture just to have  a souvenir.


July 6, 2010

TheBetesNow Coming Attractions

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Here is one of the Friends For Life bits that is coming up at theBetesNow.com

alcheckin from thebetes now on Vimeo.


Lots more coming soon to an Internet near you!

July 4, 2010

OK

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Alfred says OK. I think this trend is more than just OK.




OK I know that it isn't really called Alfred well other than ours and I know that isn't what the green OK means but three hours in Epcot on July 4th including chocolate mousse that is still OK by me.

Oh and the Red Ninja was on the case with Alfred.

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July 3, 2010

Red Ninjas in Theme Parks

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We picked up True2Go meters at CWD. This is the son of the Sidekick meter that I wrote about at www.DisneyWithDiabetes.com ages ago. I was a big fan of the Sidekick for it's mobility and the new 2.0 version is better.

The True2Go meter twists onto the top of a can of 50 strips. With a groovy little wetsuit strap they gave us we can attach their way small lance device to the side. It brilliantly designed so that with the pokey end down the lancer works without being removed from it's holster.




There is even enough room a can of 50 strips to carry extra lancets. You know it maybe time for the semiannual change of the lancet any month now.





This is a great on the meter. True2Go Dudes put a key ring on this bad boy. It small enough to go along with every T1 driver every day. While you are at it make a way to tote around 4 glucotabs too without the gluconess getting to the strips and messing up the readings. I thinking a two ended strip can with a bottom flap for tabs.

True2go gave me a white paper on accuracy. I'll read it when we get home. In the mean time my kids are carrying these little guys around Disney World. It is one nice tight little kit.

They come in red. Dudes I got more than one T1 kid - color options would make knowing who's is on first. (We got home and the local CVS has a variety of colors. Rock On.)

In the mean time Delaney calls them Red Ninjas.

Need I say more?



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