Monday, June 30, 2008
GOOD LORD but it's a huge effort. I've got a lot of the files transferred, but it takes time, time, time. Fortunately, though, I've got the new CPU up and connect to the internet so I can post here.
I did a facial portrait for the first time tonight in art class. It ended up being kind of cool. I'm feeling like I learned something tonight. I haven't always felt like I have. Tonight I feel like I really accomplished something. I don't think the model's parents will ever recognize her from the portrait I did, but she looked human, and I've never made a facial picture that remotely looked like it was a normal human. I have a small sketchbook that I'm taking with me on the trip. Must practice.
The water/sand-proof case came today to protect my camera from myself. I also now have my other suitcase. I might actually have everything ready by the time it's time to leave!
My scar revision surgery is set for July 23rd. I can hardly stand the thought of anyone with a scalpel coming near me, but this will really help relieve some pain and discomfort (in an ideal world). Lots to do before August 4th!
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Congratulations to my friend A. & R. who are leaving soon to go pick up their adopted son in Russia. Send them prayers as he speaks no English, and they speak no Russian. It will be a true language immersion experience for all involved. School will start for him shortly after he arrives in this country. I'm sure it will be true culture shock at age 12! My mother who was raised in war-time Europe could never surrender her miserly ways and accept the abundance around her, because she grew up with so little to eat and such social anxiety (anyone could be an informer). I hope this child will escape from that poverty of spirit.
My computer is having a nervous breakdown. I have a new CPU and need to transfer the data. It's a little (ok a LOT) intimidating to me to do that, but I'm going to try and do it tomorrow. I'm on the computer a lot and a stable CPU is an imperative for me.
I had a very anxious dream for a long while in my sleep last night. This is the second time recently that I've had a very anxiety-producing dream. I'm not sure what's causing the anxiety, but it's lingers for such a long time after I wake up, that I really wish my conscious mind could "get" whatever my unconscious is trying to tell me.
My hungry tummy just rumbled so loud that the cat jumped! Fighting hunger is a tough job. My appetite is coming back, back, back and I could eat, eat, eat, but I'm really trying so hard to lose weight. Sometime this week I have to find time to get a pedicure. My toes have been condemned like a delapidated house! Before letting strangers who I'll never see again in my life see my feet, I have to get them properly done up. I guess they sort of scream Redneck as opposed to alluding to sophistication. ;) Lookout world. I have enough hair to not look like I'm about to croak any second, new panties, and I'll have a pedicure and tropical attire.
Saturday, June 28, 2008
It's officially less than a week before we take off, literally! How cool!
Thursday, June 26, 2008
The trip feels more excitingly close as I put each and every item into the suitcase.
OH and the good news of the day is that Emory called and my scar revision has been approved by my insurance! When we get back from the trip I'll schedule the surgery, which should not be a huge deal. I will have to have a general anesthesia, but I will be happy to get rid of this irritating, painful and dense area of nerves that is a result of the mastectomy on my right side. I wish it could have been done a month ago, but oh well. At least I'll be able to heal for a week by the time school starts. (I hope.) What day from July 23rd or after will work for your schedule, Jenn?
Not feeling awfully well tonight, so I'm heading to bed.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Showed off my mastectomy swimsuits that I got for the cruise. The hearts of some of us are so big. One lady felt alone while she was getting chemo, so now she makes packages to take to new people on chemo that don't have someone to accompany them to treatments. Such kindness. She takes them there personally and includes such wonderfully nice things in her packages. One lady brought her "seatbelt" pillow. Most of us don't like the seatbelt that crosses our chest, even after our chests have healed. She showed us a pillow she made and uses to prevent the seatbelt from putting too much pressure on our chest. As a group we're thinking of making these and distributing them. We'll see if it really happens.
Our fearless leader was unable to be with us tonight. We wish her well in her recovery from recent surgery. Evidentally she's doing so well, however, that she's making most of us feel inadequate.
Oh, I weighed in at WW tonight. Lost a big 0.4 pound. This is the kind of loss that undermined me and made me feel like all the effort was for next to no reason. However, I've lost 13.5 lbs. since I started, so I suppose if I just keep at it, sometime in the next decade I'll finally either be dead or down to a more ideal weight. Very discouraging. Very.
Monday, June 23, 2008
I seem to have difficulty getting heads and feet in proportion to bodies. I make them too small (the heads and feet).
I'm still pretty amazed by how a little instruction can make a huge difference in what a person can accomplish artistically.
Ate breakfast this morning out under the pergola. I like it!
I've found someone to feed my fish and kitties while I'm gone. BIG relief. My goldfish are pretty big now and I don't want to overly stress them. They have to be fed daily.
Maybe tomorrow I can work on my next flower bed. I need to shovel up some grass before I put in the Miracle Gro (tm) dirt. I already have some flowers to put in the bed.
Leslie, I got the post card today! I bet the cats were cool. Manx cats have the SOFTEST fur.
Sunday, June 22, 2008
I see the ENT tomorrow. Things are better, but I'm still not hearing as well as I should. I'm hoping he has some positive suggestions for improving that.
Finishing up a John Gresham book, "The Chamber." I think I'll have to stay up late and finish it tonight. Only one or two chapters left. I have already taken my night meds though, so I might be drooling soon and unable to have a cohesive thought.
Thanks to all who helped with the pergola today. It's going to be lovely. Between it and my two umbreallas, I have about a 16 by 16 outdoor room to sit int he shade and have breakfast, read, or nap. Love it.
Sending good thoughts out to Randy tonight. Get well soon girl. I'm hoping your new and improved arrangement will give your relief from a lot of discomfort. You're just getting all tuned up for retirement! Put bamboo in the restaurant somewhere. It is supposed to attract money.
Peace to you and all you love.
Saturday, June 21, 2008
Came home and started searching on the web for the perfect fold-up beach bag, carry-on, humongus purse. I may or may not have found one, but it's ordered and on it's way. I was surprised where I found it (QVC) but if you look at the pictures, it has all kinds of interior pockets, which is a must! I can pack it in my suitcase and then use it when going to the pool, the beaches or on return home for souvenirs.
The excitement is building around here. We all feel like the kids in the Disney advertisement who exclaim, "I'm too excited to sleep!"
I've made my personal check-off list of what will have to go in my suitcase. My other bathing suit that I ordered (so I have two) came and so I have one to put on that won't be cold and wet (I hope.). I was surprised though that though the style of the newest one is different, the fabric is a different color of the same print. Didn't know when I ordered it that it was the same print as the first suit I got from these folks.
Attire, ESPECIALLY bathing suits, is a whole new challenge now that a major portion of me has been removed! It's not impossible though and I'm much more concerned about people seeing my fat thighs, than I am them seeing a peek of my scars.
July 5th is our departure date. "I'm so excited I can't sleep!"
Friday, June 20, 2008
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Jewel and I were the dynamic duo today. Not a lot got done other than dinner. It's ever SO sweet to be loved by anything that innocent, and vulnerable and happy. Babies are the bestest.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
People who have bumper stickers are more likely to be involved in road rage, a recent study says. It doesn't matter if your bumper sticker is about Peace and Love or if it's an advertisement for the benefits of certain green, leafy, vegetable matter for a tobacco substitute. Your kid may beat up my honor student, or perhaps you're proud of your alma mater -- it doesn't matter. If you have a bumper sticker, you're more likely to have temper issues when confronted with poor driving, a challenge from another driver, the proverbial "finger" or the occasional shout out. I don't have any bumper stickers, but I've thought about it, and of course I have that 2ft. by 3ft. magnetic sign on the truck advertising Jenn's web page for the 3 Day. I wonder if that magnetic sign means I'm at risk for road rage?
Very excited by our upcoming cruise. So many exciting possibilities.
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
However, I walked and did so much all in one day that I wore myself to a totall FRAZZLE and as a consequence, I did NOTHING today.
I got up at my regular time, watered plants, ate breakfast and then lay down again and the next thing I knew it was 1PM. Pheww, that is tired!
I hope you and yours have had a wonderful day.
Monday, June 16, 2008
Shopped until I about dropped today. But I got several nice tops that I can wear to school (and on the cruise). And I was able to get a couple more pare of shorts. I have about three pair, and feel better about having a couple more to wear on the trip. I have a beach cover-up now too. We lucked up at BabiesRUs today and got some sunblock-type clothing for Miss Jewel and Master Liam. We're going to be in the tropics so we want to be sure that they don't catch too many "rays."
I had art class tonight. I was tired but was very jazzed when the art teacher said I did the best job of anyone in class tonight! Wow!
Tired, tired, tired. Must sleep.
Sunday, June 15, 2008
The big excitement is that we're going on a cruise. I've never been on a cruise before so that alone is exciting. But the real cool part is that it's going to be Jewel and Liam with their Mom, Dad and all their grandparents. With some extensive juggling it's been worked out so that we can all go. We're going on a western Caribbean (I would have never figured out that Caribbean had two "b's" in it, if it wasn't for spellcheck!) cruise that will include stops in Cozumel, Mexico, some port in Belize and some island off Honduras. I'm pretty stoked about the whole thing. Thank goodness I bought that bathing suit a couple weeks ago. It appears that I'll be using it a good bit on this trip. If you're really interested, you can browse THIS site for the whole lowdown.
This is the vacation I wanted to take (going to exotic places) but it's better because I get to have my family around too. I found some pictures of Jenn recently when she was 4 and she couldn't remember the event, but she looked SO cute. Now we'll have pix of Liam and little Jewel on this big family get-together on the ocean, that they can show their kids in years to come.
I of course want to geocache on the trip and so far have found two caches within walking distance of the ship dock in Cozumel. I hope to have similar success in Belize and Honduras, and then I can say I'm an international geocacher!
I had a lovely lady luncheon with several of the townhome ladies here today (over at my next-door-neighbor's). We dined on sumptuous fresh fruit, some GREAT grits w/shrimp and asparagus' and fresh salad. THAT is a lovely, lovely luncheon that would never have filled up a manly man, but we had a fun time cackling and noshing on the good food. Thanks, K. It was nummy.
Betty is restocked with food. I've done some laundry of my own. I'm still scratching, but I bought some hydrocortosone cream to see if that gives me any relief whatsoever.
I'm getting a really coolies vacation this year! Wow. I get the beach, a cruise and international travel all rolled into one. It's just freakin' AWESOME!
Friday, June 13, 2008
Tragic news about Tim Russert today. He seemed to like his job. But I personally am hoping for more than 58 years; I'm sure he was too.
Jenn tried to "style" what hair I have today and make it more stylish. Unfortunately all we had were a lot of laughs. It's just too short to really be "styled." I at least have moved from the image of Uncle Fester to a Marine hair cut all the way to an Army hair cut now. As time goes on maybe I'll even find out what I look like with bangs -- something I haven't had in about 50 years. I'm glad for every micrometer of hair that I have, no matter what color!
Thursday, June 12, 2008
I'm tired tonight but looking forward to going to my first Geocaching event in about a year. It's in downtown Atlanta and I don't plan to do much more than hold down a chair, but I'm looking forward to some fun and seeing friends I haven't seen in AGES. Saturday, I'm headed to do something I want to do and see friends and meet new friends in a way that I did BEFORE cancer -- like in my life might be approaching something I'd consider NORMAL! Ok, well, closer to normal -- for me. I never claimed to be truely "normal."
Before school starts back, I'd like to travel somewhere cool and exotic. Probably not Europe because the exchange rate is so awful right now with the weak dollar. Where would be an interesting, but not too challenging place to go to for a few days? If I stay in the US, what would be a cool place to visit that I haven't already visited? If I go somewhere out of the country, where? What would I see there? I have about six weeks left to have a little fun before my life is locked into the school year. All suggestions appreciated.
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
This afternoon I had four dental fillings. I drove myself to the dentist over on Wendy Hill Rd. and home. I didn't have to have any shots and no hypnosis was required. The dentist did it all and I didn't have hardly any discomfort. After years of traumatic dental work leading to years of refusing to get any dental work done, I love my dentist. He is so gentle and so incredibly nice.
Amber you will be glad to know that there is now mulch over the tree bases. Thanks to my next-door-neighbor they're covered in bark. I hope the rain tonight and an hour and a half of slow drip on the most fragile fo the two trees will help it out some.
I'm assembling the baby pergola that I bought but it's going to have to be done on the installment plan. It's pretty challenging assembly in this heat.
I sinned grievously today and will not be able to claim victory in the Weight Watcher's hall of fame today. I've been bad. But it was all GOOD. Mmmmmmm.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
OH, and get this.......I sent the permission to MD Anderson giving them permission to release the information about MY pathology report to me. I got a letter from MDA yesterday.....it's them sending it back to me, because I didn't specify a date the permission would expire. So I have to send it back to them after specifying when the permission will expire. But I still get hung up on the idea that I have to PAY to get MY information from MDA and I have to give MDA my legal permssion to release the information to ME. That's another screwey medical thing. I think it's a genuine abuse of HIPPA. Who do you report this insanity to? It's just crazy.
Bought a nice little sun shade gizmo from Lowes today. It's not as expensive or as fancy as a pergola, but it offers some nice shade, and that's something I desperately need around my outdoor room. Especially with these high temps we're "enjoying" more shade is good. I'm hoping that it won't be too complex to assemble. I've been wondering how to acquire a little more shade, but the price was right and the size is pretty much what I need. Yeah, Lowes!
Hope you and those you love are safe, well and cool tonight.
Monday, June 09, 2008
Everyone in the class is a total beginner. Some folks have done some other kinds of art but no one is more than a beginner for drawing. Using charcoal is interesting. We did all our drawing on newsprint. I won't be able to scan this pics because he has us using paper that is 18 x 24.
The gallery in C'ton has a nice space for the class. Apparently I will need to arrive early to class each week, unless I plan on buying an easel. (They have a few you may use, first come; first served.) The newsprint and charcoal are an interesting medium to work with. I didn't understand why we had to get different kinds of charcoal, but after using two different kinds of charcoal, I see how they are different in the level of impression and the depth of the mark they make.
Tired. Tomorrow I go see the plastic surgeon to determine if I'm eligible for a scar revision. You wouldn't believe all the hoops this guy makes you jump through before you ever see the fellow! Amazing.
Hope you and those you love are well.
Sunday, June 08, 2008
There's a bunch of us "mature" women that live here in the townhomes, and I found out today that one got laid off from her job. She is freaking OUT. I know I would be. She's literally willing to mow grass and clean houses in order to make money. I'm not sure, but I think she's older than I am, so finding a job is going to be a BIG challenge.
The heat is effecting my new dogwood trees. I'm worried that they may not make it. A different neighbor clued me in on how to let a dripping hose gently drip onto the tree roots for a while instead of trying to just water them with a rush of water. I hope letting the drip deal work will save them.
Tomorrow I get to hang out with Jewel. I hope her teeth have come through. The girl is going to be happier when they finally come in.
Friday, June 06, 2008
If I knew how to turn it 90 degrees, I would. But, I don't. So just turn your head sideways and listen to the girl as she says, "Mam mam mamma" I took the video with my phone. I'm impressed that it's as good a quality as it is.
Did a little pottery yesterday, but wasn't very satisfied with how it turned out so far.
Even though it was hot, hot, hot today, I enjoyed reading in my outdoor "room" out back.
For dinner tonight I made Chinese spring rolls and they turned out pretty nifty if I do say so myself. I haven't done it before, but decided I'd attempt it today. They were actually easy to make, it just took a while to make the stuffing because you have to cook it twice. They'd never make the Weight Watcher approved list though because they have to be fried.
Miss Jewel is going to get a couple of teeth most any moment. I don't understand why they haven't broken through her gums yet. They're really pushing up hard against the gums and she's clearly unhappy about it a lot of the time.
There's an old Hank Williams song, Kaw-Liga, and I have this music playing in my head, because I think it'd make great melody for Jewel's song. I've decided with her constant drooling, she needs a song about SALIVA. ;) I think if I came up with lyrics it could be put to this song quite easily. Hahaha.
Shoulder is improving with the work-outs they give me at physical therapy. It seems to be more stable. It's gratifying to know that all that suffering is worth it!
Good to continue to hear occasionally from my former ChemoAngels. You'll both always have a special place in my heart. It's always awesome to hear from you both.
Thursday, June 05, 2008
Tuesday, June 03, 2008
I've officially lost 13 pounds now since joining WW's. That's more weight than I lost in 6 months back in the 80's when I did WW's when it was much more difficult and required a LOT more food preparation and obsession. Basically I've decided to be hungry most of the time. But I was hungry most of the time when I was eating everything I wanted to and was gaining weight. So I guess I'll keep at it a while longer. Losing 13 pounds in about 2-1/2 months makes me feel like I'm actually getting somewhere with my deprivation.
Reading a new book.
Jewel and I get to hang out tomorrow, so it's up and at 'em early.
I ordered a bathing suit suitable for boobless women. I'm expecting it to arrive soon. I'm supposed to be able to put my prosthetics in pockets in the right spots, and so then I'll be able to visit the pool. I'm very skeptical of buying attire that can't be tried on, when I have huge fitting issues these days. It'll be interesting. It's ugly, but it's less ugly than most of the other ugly swimsuits for fat girls with mastectomies. Another reason to lose weight. Maybe I can actually get down to a weight that has minorly ugly swim suits instead the majorly ugly ones.
Monday, June 02, 2008
Right now I'm miserable with eczema. All I want to do is scratch, scratch, scratch. After a search on the internet, it appears that eczema can be an infrequent side effect of a compromised immune system resulting from chemotherapy. The cure appears to be boosting your immune system and time.
If it's not one thing it's six more. Scratch. Scratch. Oooooooo, Scraaaaaaaatch!