MaKighlee Randolph is particularly talkative on a recent Monday, trying to watch an 'Underdog' DVD while explaining what has happened to her nose since surgery six months ago.
That surgery was necessary to remove a large facial hemangioma that has existed on the little girl's nose since she was a baby.
In July, MaKighlee, who turns 3 in March, had surgery at Doernbecher Children's Hospital to remove a hazelnut-size purple bump (consisting of a cluster of small capillaries) from her nose.
Dr. Carol MacArthur, who specializes in pediatric otolaryngology at Doernbecher, removed the ball of extra tissue, which made up what she referred to as a 'little blood sponge.'
Ask MaKighlee about her nose and she's quick to respond.
'It had a Band-Aid.'
'What was behind the Band-Aid?' asked this reporter.
'The owwie,' she replied.
MaKighlee's mother, Kayla Randolph, said when the bandages first came off, it was difficult to see what the surgery had accomplished.
'It was still swollen so it looked like a ball,' she said. 'I couldn't picture in my head what it was going to look like.'
She said MaKighlee has had one follow-up checkup and another one is scheduled to determine if the girl will need any reconstructive surgery.
For now, MaKighlee only has a small scar as a reminder of the surgery.
'I think it's done healing,' said Randolph. '(The doctor) is waiting for the scar to go away.'
Randolph said it wasn't until last month that the incisions really began to fade.
'Before, you could actually see the scar pretty good,' said Kayla.
Initially, the operation was to cost $20,000.
However, Doernbecher Chidlren's Hospital agreed to reduce that amount to $8,000 after discovering Randolph's insurance wouldn't pay for it. Also, being a single mother attending culinary school at the time, raising the money would have been difficult for Randolph.
That's when Rhea Medina, director of Merlo Station's Continuing Educaiton for Young Parents program, and Daphne Green, Merlo's horticultural teacher, came in, making sure that a portion of funds from the school's annual plant sale held last spring went to benefit MaKighlee.
Randolph is a 2006 graduate of the Continuing Education for Young Parents, an options program offered by the Beaverton School District.
By the time the plant sale was over, the school had collected $9,030 (including an anonymous check for $2,500 from a couple in Germany).
'It took care of all that surgery and all her follow-up appointments,' said Kayla. 'We've been back about three times.'
Randolph recently began sending out thank-you cards to those who supported the fund-raising effort. She plans to include 'before' and 'after' photos of MaKighlee to all those who helped out financially. That will include the couple from Germany since there was a return address on the envelope, said Randolph.
Randolph said what impressed her most is the quick turnaround from the time the money from the surgery was raised in May to MaKighlee's surgery in July.
Meanwhile, Randolph graduated from Western Culinary Institute in October and is employed by a catering company, hoping to work for Nike's catering company in the future, she said.
'I want to open up a restaurant some day,' she said. 'That is my goal.'
Randolph said numerous folks at the CEYP program, including Medina, like the results of MaKighlee's surgery.
'They think it looks really good,' she said.