Thursday, December 31, 2009

No UTI...test came back I guess these symptoms I've been having are something else. My sleep difficulties continue, so I guess I'll be up for watching Kathy Griffin and Anderson Cooper welcome the New Year tonight on CNN. I love Kathy, so it won't be a sacrifice for me or anything like that.

I sat up and watched "The Wrestler" last night in the bedroom. I watched about half of it. It is a GREAT movie. I can't wait to see the other half. Micky Rourke is really great in this movie....he looks so different! I can't remember ever seeing a movie he did that I liked....I'm really enjoying this one.

Sandy rented "El Camino" from Netflix. I wasn't in the mood to see it today. I did want to see this movie when it first came out. Now I find I have to work myself up to see it.

We got about four inches of snow today. It's pretty out there, with the lights and all. Sandy was able to snowblow the driveway and paths for the dogs in less than an hour. Love that snowblower!

Sandy is working tonight. We hope to be able to get-together with Janet, Jess and Jere Saturday night. Maybe Barry will join them. We have gotten together around New Years for several years now...usually fighting over board games, particularly Cranium. I get so competitive and they get silly and I get pissed because I think they aren't taking the game seriously, which of course, they aren't. They laugh at me and I get more irrational. It's loads of fun...that dynamic never quits and is always loads of fun!

HAPPY NEW YEAR! 2010, seems so weird to write looks sci-fi almost.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Another Doctor's Visit =Another Outing

Just back from my check-up with Dr. McCourt down at L&M. She is pleased with how I'm healing, reassured me that being exhausted is a GOOD thing, it means I'm healing and she says I can start chemo in two weeks.

She also cleared me to go to Maine next week...YAY! But, I'm not cleared to drive until six weeks after I have a few more weeks to go. I was hoping she'd say I was okay to drive now. Not that I want to drive all over the place, but it would be nice to be able to make a hair appt and not have to worry about if it fits Sandy's schedule.

I had such trouble sleeping last usual "night before the appt insomnia"...I didn't dare look at the clock. Finally I sent Sandy a text message, we texted back and forth for a bit and then I was able to go to sleep. Oh, maybe the fact that I had two huge bouts of diarrhea also had something to do with me being able to go to sleep. I was so uncomfortable prior to this "release." I think it helped to "relieve" myself of this burden. I was then free to travel to dreamland.

I have two doggies sleeping with me as I doze in the recliner: Rocky on my lap and Bubbles beside me. They are my two snuggle bunnies who comfort me when I'm having problems sleeping and who are always willing to nap with me. It is so nice.

Oh, of course, as soon as I type this last paragraph, Rocky has to jump up to go bark at some unknown entity in the front yard....something that has come to kill us I'm sure!

Think I'll get myself a snack and take a nap.

Just because I can and the doctor says I should.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Going to see Dr. McCourt tomorrow to find out when chemo will start. I'm hoping mid-January.

I got my tooth fixed yesterday, didn't even need novacaine (I'm such a tough gal!)....and they got me an appointment to get my teeth cleaned on Jan 8th. I would go at I have time before we are scheduled to leave for Maine. I'll go to Ogunquit with clean teeth!

Went over to Lynne's after the dentist and got to see her lovely decorations. She always has the house so nicely decorated with both Christmas and Hannukah items.

So that was my big outing for the day...oh, and going to Jean's where I made myself a half of a liverwurst sandwich!

I came home, exhausted and feeling a bit sick from being exhausted. Took a little nap in the recliner while Sandy made supper (reheated the meatloaf and macaroni and cheese that Jean made)...we had supper while we watched the Huskies...who had a little trouble dispatching Florida State.

Talked to Richard last night, he brought me up to speed on his doings. I am so proud of him...he is still not smoking and he is working lots of hours for the catering company...keeping busy, so he hasn't gained weight as people generally do when they quit smoking. So proud of him. He is really happy and I am very happy for him.

I have really been enjoying listening to the History of Howard Stern on Sirius radio this week and last. Some really funny stuff there. Howard is on vacation and they are filling the time with stuff from the old days. It has given me some good laughs.

I can't wait for Howard to get back on the air...want to hear his take on some of the latest news, but I kind of figured out how he will feel about: 1) Paula Abdul regretting her decision to leave Idol. DUH! Howard said she was stupid to leave in the first place...she was getting boatloads of $$$ just to sit there and act stupid....the job was so easy--she did it drugged, or drunk or whatever. Who else was going to pay her that kind of money to come to work under the influence? No one...and that's what she has found out now. 2) Kate Gosselin was dropped from the talk show they were going to have her co-host with Paula Deen and someone else, in a "View" type format. They dropped her because she is "too controversial"....STUPID!!! That's what Howard would say.....stupid to drop her for being controversial....sure, let's find someone who is so bland and inoffensive that NO ONE will watch the show! How dumb!

It's scary that I seem to have more of a sense of what people will watch than network execs. I knew that Jay Leno would stink it up at 10pm and lo and behold, he's bringing down, not just his show, but the whole network!

I'm not a Kate Gosselin fan, but come on...if she's controversial, people are going to tune in to watch! Even the people who hate her will tune in to see if she screws up! How stupid are they? Too controversial....give me a break!

Sandy and I finally got around to watching the ending of Top Chef and I was so pissed that they got rid of Jen. They really had to reach to come up with a reason for dumping her. It made me so mad I may not watch next season...I'm beginning to think that these shows are rigged...Chef and Project Runway....when Kortu lost that Runway stars show I saw the hypocrisy and how it's rigged.

Okay, I have ranted long enough. That felt good. To rant about things that aren't important in the whole scheme of life...feels good.

Now I will turn to watching some episodes of "Friday Night Lights" that I downloaded from On Demand. Now, that is a great show!

It's 10 degrees here and we have the fireplace going. Nice and toasty in here....I feel sorry for all those people and animals that don't have a nice cozy home like we do. I think of that every time it gets cold like this. We are so fortunate.

Nighty night and stay warm!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas was great, quiet, but very nice. Jean and Frank came up Christmas Day, with a prime rib dinner that was delish! We are so lucky to have them in our lives. Jean brought up tins and tins of cookies for us to have when people drop by. Fortunately, people have not been dropping by, so we've been eating all the cookies.

Sandy got her iPhone activated and then went nuts yesterday, downloading apps and ringtones and in general, having a blast playing with it. She loves it now. Last night we lay in bed, each of us with our respective phones, watching the penquins in the aquarium in Japan (on the LiveCam app) and playing Bejeweled Blitz...and losing, of course.

I love that LiveCam app. Every night I check the front desk at that Russian hotel, to see who's working. There are two young women there who seem to like their jobs. They are always smiling and laughing, even when the customers aren't around. I love "spying" on them.

Today I go to the dentist to get that tooth fixed, hopefully. Then we'll swing by Jean's to pick up meat loaf that she's made for us and then over to Lynne's to drop off a tin of cookies from Jean and a little something-something from us. Lynne has been so faithful to us this past year. She's gone through some hard times herself, but has never wavered in her support of us. We really appreciate all she's done to help me and help Sandy. It's been tough at times, but it's always been fun too!

Maria and Phil and Renee and Austin came down on Saturday, bringing gifts from the family. We had a nice visit and had some laughs. After they left I crawled upstairs and slept for two hours. Did the same thing yesterday and I think I should be napping every day. I'm just so tired, all the time. If I go too long, I get feeling really sick. Sleeping makes it so much better.

When I go up to bed, my little boy, Rocky, is right with me. He climbs up on the bed, kisses me and then goes under the covers, snuggling right up to me. It makes me feel so good. Bubbles comes to bed with me too, but she always goes down by my feet. Rocky stays up near the pillow and lets me put my arm around him. It's so comforting and I slip right into a deep sleep.

The weather doesn't know what to do with itself. Since I've been sitting here it has rained, snowed and now the sun is out nice and bright. Make up my mind!

Oh, I slept until 11:30, it's now 1:30 and I could go back to sleep already. And I still have to go to the dentist, etc. PLEASE!

Huskies play tonight...I have to nap when I get home so I can watch them. Or maybe I'll record it and watch it later.

Go Huskies!!!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve

Well, it's Christmas Eve and for the first time in.....ever, I'm not going to Phil's for the annual family get-together. It's just too much for me right now. It would take too much out of me and I need to work on getting strong for the chemo that is on the horizon.

It kills me to not be there....mostly because I always wonder if this Christmas will be the last Christmas that we will have with Bob Miller. I am almost positive that this is the last year that he will know who we are. His memory is going faster and faster. He is 89 years old after is to be expected. He loves his life and he loves Wini and that's all that matters. He's happy.

I'm doing much better now. My bowels are about 60% back to normal. I was able to eat some filet mignon and baked stuffed potato for dinner last night. I can go for longer periods of time between pain meds now. I am sleeping better....not so many trips to the bathroom to interrupt my sleep.

It feels good.

Last night, after dinner, we were sitting talking and I felt something in my mouth, sticking to my tooth. I poked at it and out fell a good sized chunk of filling. This sent a chill through me. When you are getting the chemo I get, you can't have dental work done. I got scared that I wouldn't be able to get into the dentist before the chemo started and what if this turned out to be something bigger? Today I got the answer: the dentist will see me Monday. Hopefully he can fix this and maybe even get my teeth cleaned before chemo starts up again.

I find out Wednesday when I see Dr. McCourt when she plans to have me start getting the chemo. I hope that it doesn't interfere with the plans for Maine, I really am looking forward to that trip. I told Maria that even if I just laid around up there and slept, it would still be worth it to me to go. I do want to go to Remy's though, and that store near it where they have the great buys on clothes and shoes. I hope it's still open. Please be open!

So, we are having a quiet night tonight and tomorrow we'll "wrap off" and spend the day quietly with the pups. Of course there will be the usual chaos in the AM when the dogs open their gifts. I love watching that scene....I never get tired of watching them rip the wrapping paper off and pull the toys out. Then they run off to their respective "safe places" to tear the toy apart to get at the "squeaky" that is inside. Some toys last longer than others...some don't get torn apart at all, and some don't last more than two minutes. It's good that Sandy finds toys at cheap prices!

These dogs have so many toys. We have a toy basket in the living room and another one in the bedroom. These get washed every few months and there is a big box in the basement filled with toys that replace the ones being cleaned. The cleaned ones go into the basement box and so everything gets rotated.

That's how we roll here at 60 BMW.

I'm hoping that the President gets some kind of healthcare bill on his desk soon. If it isn't perfect, we'll figure that out and fix it. Nothing is written in stone. At least get something going and we'll take it from there! PLEASE! Get 'er done!


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Lately I've had that old ditty that you used to see posted on pay toilet walls (back when they had pay toilets)..."here I sit broken-hearted, paid to shit, but only farted."

I've been broken-hearted plenty of times in the past two weeks. Those of you who were reading this blog last year are familiar with my bowel "difficulties." I don't know if it's the anesthesia, the pain meds or the fact that they had to remove a section of my bowel (this time around) that has made having a BM such a challenge, but it has been.

Finally! After 13 days (a new record for me) my bowels are moving. The past three days have been particularly trying and exhausting. Something is causing me to have tremendous cramps that won't quit. I told the nurse Friday that it's like menstrual cramps gone horribly wrong.

I have had the heating pad pasted to my abdomen for the last two days. It has helped a bit but the pain meds help even more.

A weird thing I've noticed. A good portion of the upper part of my thigh is numb. I don't know why, and Sandy can't figure it out either. I'm going to mention it to the doctor Wewhen I see her next week. Maybe they hit a nerve or something.
We got about 18 inches of snow here Saturday night. Sandy had to work and she said the trip to the hospital that night was "gnarly." She said it was almost white-out conditions. She made it home all right in the AM. She didn't go right out and run the snowblower as she had planned, she was too she went to bed. In the afternoon, as she was getting ready to go out to clear the snow, she looks out and sees someone running their snowblower, clearing our driveway. She thought it was Mark, but it turned out to be Mike Sullivan. His wife said that he got in a groove and couldn't stop! It was so nice of him.

We recorded the Survivor finale and didn't watch the conclusion until this AM. I can't believe Russell did not win. We started out hating him and ended up rooting for him to make it all the way. He did play a masterful game and I don't think that what'shername deserved it at all. See, I can't even remember her name! What does that tell you?

Sandy is off with Truman and Rocky...they have their physical therapy sessions today. Rocky broke a nail, so he won't be able to go on the treadmill. Poor guy. She took him to the vet's today to have the nail checked. They cut it off, put stuff on it to keep it from bleeding and he was a perfect patient. When the same thing happened to Truman, she had to muzzle him and wrap him up in a towel so they could work on him!

I realized today that I don't have any stocking stuffers for Sandy...and she realized that she doesn't have any for we are going to leave it that way. I can't go out and get stuff and she doesn't have the time, so we aren't going to stress about it.

I don't know if I'll be able to go to Phil's for Christmas Eve. I'll have to see how I feel. I've been so tired lately. I can sleep until 10:30, come downstairs, fall asleep in the chair around 1pm, go upstairs and take a nap from 4-7 come back downstairs, eat and watch tv...go upstairs to bed at 10 and start the whole thing over again. I am up multiple times in the night, but I fall asleep quite easily after each of these episodes. I'm a sleep machine.

Speaking of sleep machines. Sandy bought a new sound machine to replace our old one which was breaking down. We've had it for about 10 years I'd runs every night. Well, we don't like the "waves" sound on this one...they have sea gull sounds in it...and they don't sound like sea gulls and whatever they are is not relaxing! I prefer the "Sleep Machine" and "Silent Island" programs that I downloaded on my iPhone for a fraction of what she paid for the sound machine! When she's working, or when I'm taking my naps, I put my iPhone on and use that to sleep. Otherwise we play the "waterfall" sound on the sound machine, which to me sounds more like white noise...which I don't mind at all.

That iPhone is wonderful, I'll tell you what! I lie in bed, check my mail, Facebook, read the NY Times, check the weather forecast and play some Bejeweled Blitz as I sip my morning protein drink and wait for the bathroom to warm up before I get out of bed and take my shower. I wonder if they'll come up with an app that turns your iPhone into a handwarmer? I just thought of that one!

Tomorrow is a big day. Taylor is driving Ryan up to the house at 3pm. First time she's driving here. Jean and Frank are coming up too. We'll be having dinner (steak for them, hamburg and gravy for me) and then opening our gifts. I'll see how I feel after that to help me decide about going to Phil's the next night.

Christmas Day will be quiet here. Sandy has not made plans for her folks to come up again. She has to work Christmas night, and it looks like another storm will be hitting then, figures! I'm looking forward to the peace and quiet and sleeping! Maybe Maria can come down for a visit from Phil's on the weekend. That would be nice.

Anyway, I've rambled on long enough. Time to head back to the bathroom where I am no longer "broken-hearted." That's my early Christmas present!


Saturday, December 19, 2009

Good news all around!

Landry had her surgery: had a 10 lb. growth removed from her abdomen! Poor thing! She feels and looks a lot better now! They did remove her spleen, which dogs need about as much as we do.....not at all.

So Carol and Mark are truly celebrating this Christmas. Now the challenge will be to keep her away from her stitches. She likes to pull stitches out. Even when she's half out from anesthesia, as the vet discovered the last time she had surgery.

I got my "stitches" out yesterday. They weren't stitches, but staples. A tech took them out and it didn't hurt much at all. They were all amazed at how good my suture line is healing. It really is quite special. Janet took me to get them taken out. Lynne was going to take me, but came down with a nasty I'm glad that I got Janet...who is on the OTHER side of the same cold.

When we got back it was noon....I had a little of Carol's chicken soup and then went up to bed and slept for five hours!

The nurse told me to double up on the Miralax....take it in the AM and the PM and take another dose of Colace. Seems like every two hours I'm doing something to help my bowels....when are my bowels going to start helping me??? It's not like I'm eating a whole lot....I dropped four lbs.,
but there has to be something up there! Little pieces of chicken, some crackers, maybe some rice krispies???

I guess I'm as ready as I can ever be for Christmas. I have my presents, just have to wrap them. The kids will be coming over Wednesday. Have to find out when the Huskies vs Stanford game is...I bet it's the same time that the kids are here. We'll be going up to Phil's for Christmas Eve, where we always have a great time.

I wonder if I can get my hair done before Christmas. Sandy is going on Tuesday....she was able to switch her appt easily. Maybe they have a space for me. I need a trim. My last trim before it gets shaved off!

I see Dr. McCourt the first week of January and I'm sure they'll set me up with my first chemo appt. I don't want it to be the Friday that we are going to Maine for Camp Husky. I'm going to push for starting the middle of January.

Get it going and get it over with.

Tonight we are going to have a big storm. Figures that Sandy has to work. Which means that she'll come home to a snowed-in driveway. She was hoping it would snow on Sunday as they originally said. Then she could sleep Sunday night and clear off the snow in the AM. It rarely works out that way. Good thing we invested in that great snow blower last year!

Rocky likes the snow, even though he has the thinnest coat of all the dogs. He likes to go out and fly around...which makes us nervous that he could injure that surgically repaired leg, sliding around out there. So, he'll be happy tomorrow and Lily will be too. She loves the snow too.
Truman and Bubbles...not so much!

Well....I have a quiet day ahead of the recliner, Rocky on my lap under the snuggy throw, Bub in Lily's bed, Lily on the floor, snoring. Nice.

I leave with this thought? Am I wrong for thinking very very bad thoughts about Joe Lieberman? I used to love this guy......not anymore!

GO HUSKIES!!! The new guy plays tomorrow!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Update to the post I did this morning: Landry had her spleen removed. The tumor (?) weighed 10 pounds! The doctor doesn't think the tumor is malignant and it had NOT spread to other areas....don't know what the first vet saw on the images. They also found out that Landry has only one kidney! Don't know where the other one got to. It's very rare for a dog to be born with only one kidney...but if there is a dog like that, it figures Carol and Mark would have it living with them!

So, we are cautiously optimistic here. She is spending the night at the vets. Hopefully the sweetheart can come home tomorrow.

We are so happy for her and for Carol and Mark...and her "brother" Porter, who was a wreck today while she was gone.

Oh, and they did show Sandy in the gas wars piece on Channel 3. Fortunately for her they cut out the part where she said, "this is great, my dogs are happy and I got gas!" Of course, it would have been THE BEST if they HAD let that stay in! HA HA! I would have laughed myself silly and so would everyone else who knows her.

She looked so cute on tv.


Came home yesterday, climbed the stairs, put on my pjs and went to bed. Slept for five hours. It felt so good!

Carol brought over a huge pot of homemade chicken soup. Came up to see me. She got bad news about Landry yesterday. She has a splenetic tumor. She hasn't been eating right for two weeks and her stomach looked big....for reason. This news made me cry. I feel so bad for Landry and for Carol and Mark. They have had so many heartaches with their pets. Carol is taking Landry to the vet in W. Hartford today...he may do emergency surgery. The tumor is wrapping itself around all kinds of organs and it's moving fast. I hope it works out all right for Landry...she's such a sweetheart.

I had some of that soup last night, a small bowl, along with a piece of Canadian brown bread toasted. It was delish. No comparison to hospital food.

Poor Bubbie cried when she saw me for the first time. She grabbed a toy, came in the bathroom with me and cried and ran around in circles. It was cute and heartbreaking at the same time.

Sandy went to run errands and left Lily and Bub home with me....we all got in the bed and that's when I took my long nap. Didn't hear Rocky barking later and didn't hear when the Overhead Door guy came to fix the garage door. I gues I was out like a light.

Did I write here how I broke my glasses in the hospital? They just fell apart...just like they did a few months after I got frames. The nurse got me a roll of tape and I would have to retape it three-four times a day. Sandy finally brought me my old glasses when she came to visit on Sunday and you know what? I seem to see better with the old glasses than the new ones. I think I'm going to ditch the graduated lenses (or whatever the hell you call them) next time. I'll stick with bifocals.

When I lay on my left side it hurts like hell...but it also gets the gas blowing out. It took a few hours to work last night, but when it got started, the results were fantastic! Lily was also blowing farts and between the two of us, the air was "special" in the bedroom last night.

Great to sleep in my own bed. That hospital bed was the worst. There was a "hole" in the middle that would really hurt my back. Enough of's over.

I also didn't have my little snuggle bunnies (Bub and Rocky) in the bed with me in the hospital. Last night they both snuggled up to me. Rocky would lean over and kiss me every once in awhile in the middle of the night.

We started watching the last Star Trek movie on the Blue Ray player last night. Sandy had bought the movie on blue ray. That movie is fantastic. We had to switch it off as Sandy was getting tired, I could have stayed up to watch the whole was that good.

Sandy took Rocky and Truman to their PT appt this AM. I read in the paper that gas in Colchester is the cheapest in the I called her to suggest she tank up while she's there. She did and the guy from Channel 3 was there doing a story on the cheap gas and interviewed her. She might be on tonight. We'll have to record it. I want to hear that voice on the tv.

Well...Bub thinks Sandy is home, she's barking at the door. I didn't hear the garage door, but I have headphones on. Oh wait....they are home!

Gotta go.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Going Home

Big day today. Sandy will be en route in an hour or so. I'm getting out this morning. Had some rough patches over the past few days with the gas, but last night I blew out a HUGE amount of gas and this morning when I woke up, I felt FANTASTIC!

Katie, the resident that I know from UConn came in this AM and took out the Jackson Pratt drain that was in my right side. That went well. I gave her my email address and she's going to drop me a line from time to time to let me know how she's doing. I really like her and she likes me. Nice person.

Every day is pretty much the same here. I have my little routine now. I walk, eat, wash up, play on the computer, sleep, eat, walk, walk, walk, and sleep. Play on the computer some more. I'm so glad I am connected via the laptop and the iPhone. It makes the time pass faster and more pleasantly.

So, that's it from here. Going home. Will be happy to be in my home, with my puppies, in my own bed, on my own toilet, etc. Eating Jean and Carol's food. It's going to be so good.

I don't know when I'll get back to this blog again. I hope within the next couple of days. Maybe sooner. We'll see.

Until then,

Friday, December 11, 2009

The Goal

Is to fart.

That brings life down to it's simplest components. I have to fart. If I can manage to eke out a fart...I will be allowed to eat, more than the liquid diet that I am on now.

Once I'm eating, the next goal will be to get on a "regular bowel schedule" as Dr. McCourt says. My heart sank when I heard that and I told her that last time it took almost two weeks to get me "regular." She told me that they would be a lot more aggressive with the meds this time to get me back to regular.
I hope so. If not, I'll be spending Christmas here in Providence.

Yesterday Sandy brought Rocky to visit me. I have the dog's pictures hanging up on the bulletin
board here in my room and all the nurses and aides love them. They were very excited at the prospect of seeing Rocky. Sandy just had to take him to Security, show them that he was all up to date in shots, etc. Then they took his picture and issued an ID badge with the picture on it. He wore it on his harness.

I heard the nurses in the hall yelling, "Rocky's here!" It was a good five minutes before they let him come in my room. My nurse Janet, had taken him away from Sandy and she carried him in to see me, kissing him and he was kissing her. That fickle guy!

Rocky and Sandy went for a walk with me, around the corridors. He was SO GOOD! Everyone loved him and they were buzzing about him for the rest of the shift.

Last night was a little tough. They discontinued my "on demand" morphine and are giving me percoset and oxycodone. Thankfully, those meds work. But when they start to wear off......YOW!

So, I have my liquid breakfast, lunch and dinner, run back and forth to the bathroom to pee (like a race horse); take my meds and walk, walk, walk, to get the gas moving down and out.
That's my day.

Last night I slept in three hours increments, so it was almost like "normal." I do doze quite a bit during the day. It's not a bad life, really.

The "sound machine" app that I downloaded (at Lynne's suggestion) works great! I use it every night. Last night I used "white noise #3" and it put me right out. It was well worth the $1.99 I spent on it.

Tomorrow Sandy is coming up with more supplies and with Jean. I think she might bring Rockster with her too.

So, I'm fading now. Think I'll take a little nap, then get my meds, then a shower. It feels so good to shower. Yep, that sounds like a plan!

Nighty night.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The prone position

Monday night I heard from lots of folks, it was SO NICE. People sending emails, texting me, calling me, from all over the place--Peggy in Maine, Carol and Jim in Tennessee, Steve en route to Montreal, Maggie from Delaware. That felt so good and I really got energized by it all. Made me feel like I had a whole Army getting "my back."

Everything went like clockwork yesterday. Sandy got home a bit early thanks to Lindsay (one of her co-workers) coming in early and letting Sandy get out of there. She got to sleep for an hour and a half or so and then it was time for me to rouse her and we got on the road.

We brought Lily with us so she didn't have stay in the kennel all day. She and Sandy slept in the car while I was in surgery.

I liked the gas-passer, an Asian guy named Joe. He and I exchanged a few yuks....we have same type of humor. Dr. McCourt explained that the description of what she planned to do was being kept very she wouldn't know the whole story until she got in there. It reminded me of the exploratory surgery my mother had when her cancer came back, they opened her up, messed around inside for hours and then closed her back up and stop fighting, she was "full of cancer." That gave me a little chill...but I shook it off quickly as everything was moving fast.

I signed up for another Tissue Study trial. No skin off my n ose to help out....get it? No skin....
Then they gave me the good stuff....Versid and wheeled me into the OR. I got a little treat as they had to wait for my blood type test to come back. So, we all chatted about music and such. Dr. McCourt even sang a bit of "Whole Lotta Love" when I said I liked Led Zeppelin. I had asked what kind of music they would be playing and they said whatever I if I was going to be hearing it. I told them I like all kinds of music and of course they whip out the "even opera?" wise guy question. So I told them I DO like opera! And Led Zepp and Sinatra, blah blah.

Then they got me on the table and I got to see how they put you in the "cruxifiction position"....your arms straight out on table extensions. Then the tests came back and they told me it was time to go under. I said, "oh, the big stuff." To that Joe said, "you're getting the Michael Jackson stuff" and I said, "cool, just make sure I wake up!" He said, "no problem" and the next thing I know I'm waking up in the Recovery Room.

The surgery was quite involved and took five or more hours. Dr. DiSilvestro came in and helped Dr. McCourt. She was very happy about that as she said it was a "mess" in my pelvis, which is where she focused her efforts.

So, I lost my uterus, my left ovary, my cervix, part of my colon and they had to do a resiection of my small intestine. Sandy told me that they had to remove part of my rectum, but they left enough that doodies won't fall out while I walking down the street! And that is a good thing!

I got up to my room around 8:30 and started appreciating the beauty of the pain pump right away. Ah, morphine......

I slept in five minute increments all night, until around five...then I started sleeping for about 15 minutes. There were people in and out all night, doing all kinds of things to me. Some of it good, some not so good. I started itching in the most inconvenient, hard to reach places. That drove me nuts for I got the iPhone out and played Bejeweled Blitz...another maddening thing, but it took my mind off the situation.

In the early morning I read all the response from folks to the update post Sandy had made on my FB page. That really perked me up. I've said it before but I must repeat it...I am so lucky to have such a wonderful family and so many supportive friends. I get so much energy from them.

Dr. McCourt showed up early, looking beat. She was exhausted after the surgery Sandy said. It took a lot out of her. I told her she really earned her fee yesterday. She didn't argue with that.
She gave me the good news that I can't eat until I pass gas. Now, as most people know, farting is not a problem for me...unless farting too much is considered a problem...which is how Sandy looks at it. She gets annoyed with me and my gaseousness.

But after surgery, I have trouble farting. I am really going to have to apply myself. First have to get the catheter out so I can sit on the toilet instead of peeing in the bag. That's another conundrum for me. Ordinarily I can pee my lit. tle heart out....24/7. Yesterday they said they needed a urine spec from me. I had JUST peed not 10 minutes before, but I was still able to produce a goodly amount for their test. It's just a talent I have. Hard to be modest about it. Not everyone has this talen
Anyhoo, after surgery things are different. I have to really focus, meditate, will myself to pee. So, I'm still not doing enough to warrant them pulling the catheter out and I can't fart with the catheter I don't get to eat until this is all resolved. I think the catheter will come out pleadings and focus exercises are working. Once that is out, my focus switches to farts.

It's all about the basics in life.

When the Resident and Fellow came in to do their morning rounds, the Resident was looking at me oddly. I asked her who she was and she immediately lit up and started gushing, "I know who you are, I know who you are!" Turns out she graduated from UConn School of Medicine and knew me because of my job up there. Not only that, she says I was the one who worked with her to learn the complete physical and she also had me for a few scenarios. She said I did a great job. I told her, "that's nice, we don't get much feedback on how we are doing." She said "are you kidding, you were our favorite Standardized Patient!" I don't know about that, but it was nice (and smart) of her to say it.

She was so excited about seeing me, she was telling everyone on the floor and her fellow residents. I heard from people all day about her telling them about me.

So that was a nice start to the day. Mostly I layed in bed, playing games and dozing on and off all morning. Late morning they got me up; washed me; changed me and changed the bed. I got to sit in the chair by the window for a few hours, which gave me the chance to get the laptop out and get on the "net.

Then I went for a little stroll down the hall with Janet, my nurse. Since I had no idea where my room was located in relation to my old room, it was fun to see what was out there. I did get a bit nauseated walking, so we came back and I got back into bed. That felt good. I didn't blow my vomiting since 1986.

One goal I had for a long time went by the boards yesterday. I had always said I wanted to go through life being a blood DONOR not a blood recipient. Well, I had to have two units of whole blood that dream is over. SOB SOB! Ha ha! I just hope the donors lived "healthy lives" if you know what I mean.

My nurse just came in and told me they are stopping the morphine. They want to give me percoset...and I'm leery about it. I wanted the Tramadol I had taken last year, but she said that "wasn't enough for the surgery I had." She suggested vicodin! That really got my attention. I do NOT want vicodin....I'll take the percoset thank you.

She's coming back with the pill and we are going to go for another stroll. Hope I don't get the nausea again. I can take just about anything, but nausea levels me. I'll keep my eyes on the horizon as we walk, so I don't get seasick!

The walking today did get the bowel sounds going. I can't wait to be unhooked from the catheter so I can walk, walk, walk. Walking cures a lot of ills.

Sandy is going to bring Rocky to see my tomorrow. They will let him come in if she brings proof of his shots, etc. It will be so much fun to see my little guy running around here! I know they are going to love him. I just have to keep him off my abdomen....which is where he likes to sleep.

Huskies playing Kentucky tonight. I can't stand Calipari....I hope the Huskies paste Kentucky! Of course, they had trouble with Harvard this weekend, so who knows how it will go. I'll be watching, 9:30 on ESPN.

Big day tomorrow--nighty night!!!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Prep work

Today's the big day....for sitting on the potty and purging for the surgery. I screwed up right away and dropped one of the two pills I was supposed to take and it promptly disappeared. I crawled around the kitchen floor with a flashlight, searching for it, no dice. So, I took the one pill and hoped that my bowels would respond.

Lynne came over for "lunch"...which I can't have. She was nice enough to bring me a jar of boullion so I have something to have for supper. She crawled around the kitchen floor with a flashlight, looking for the dice. She boldly predicted that Sandy would find it when she got up from bed.

After Lynne left, the trots started. I guess I only needed one pill after all. Then the process demands that you drink 8 oz glasses of that "golightly" stuff EVERY 10 minutes! OHMYGOD! I have found something that is worse than the CT scan stuff. I dutifully set the timer for 10 minutes and follow the directions to the T. Guess what? The stuff works!

So, Sandy got up from bed and found the second pill. I just took that one and we'll see what happens. I mean, everything is moving quite nicely on just one pill...that second pill will probably rocket me to the moon!

I'm all set for the hospital. I even downloaded a sound machine application for my I can use it in the hospital. It has lots of neat sounds on it...I have a big choice.

Jean and I went to Sears yesterday to get tires put on Sandy's car. Sandy was sleeping at home. Jean told me that she bought me a Blue Ray DVD player...UNBELIEVEABLE! It is a Sony, so it is compatible with the new TV. I hooked it up last night. I tried a Harry Potter movie in it and Deanna is can't believe how it improves the picture! Parts of movies that are dark are so lightened up that you can see so much more detail.

Jean is so good to me. She said that when I'm stuck home this winter because of the flu fears...she wants me to be able to enjoy DVDs on the player. Isn't that the most wonderful thing? I have to come up with something special to do for her. It's so hard to do anything for her, I'll have to put my thinking cap on.

So, next time I write here I should be post-surgery and probably loopy. Who's knows what I will write? Can't wait.

Nighty night

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Hot Thursday

Maybe I wasn't HOT...but it was warm. Warm enough that I was out there without a jacket and when I got soaked washing the palladium windows, I was able to stay out there with wet jeans and shirt.

I washed the downstairs windows inside and out. That inspired me to drag out the ladder and hook up the hose to the Windew outside window cleaner. I love that stuff, it works so good. You just have to rinse the window, then spray it with the cleaner and then rinse it again. It cleans it so good. Of course, I had to climb the ladder with the hose to reach the window and that's how I got soaked.

I did the palladium window in the master bathroom and the hallway upstairs. I also did the storm door on the deck. It is so hard to clean the storm door as you can't slide out the screen section. So I used this stuff to clean through the screen to get the glass washed. It worked like a charm.

All the windows look great now. Thanks to me....Windex...and the ladder.

Then I got a second wind and put up the outside Christmas lights. Put the three reindeer out by the tree and strung lights on the tree...then put up the rope light on the front porch columns. Job well done. The great thing is all the exterior lights are run off one switch in the garage. We don't have to go out to plug things in, we just flicked the switch! Easy as pie.

Now I'm sitting and vegging on the laptop. Playing all those dopey games, Yoville, Farmville, Mafia Wars, Farmtown, etc. etc. I am totally addicted to Bejeweled Blitz....I bought it and have it on my IPhone and even play it while I'm on the toilet. As a matter of fact, my current high score (which puts me in second place behind Meghan Stone on my list of pals) was accomplished last night while I was taking a dump! Success on two counts!

Sandy and Frank worked today to get the heat lamp installed in the bathroom. I had bought a combo fan/light/heater for the bathroom when we lived in the old house. Sandy was afraid to install it there as she didn't think we had the wiring for it. Now the current fan/light doesn't work right (the light doesn't work) and she decided to install the heater/light/fan combo instead. Turns out all we need to do is install a new heat bulb...instead of the plain bulb that was in there. All that was wrong with it was a faulty switch. She and Frank took care of that today and they picked up the heat bulb. So I guess I won't be freezing this winter when I get out of the shower!

So now I have a combo heater/fan/light to give away. First one who contacts me gets it. It's never been used. It's a nice one too. Not a cheap model.

Let me know.


Monday, November 30, 2009

Went to Maria's on Saturday and finally got to go to the Lithuanian Club Kitchen. Karin joined us and we walked over there. The Club is in a big building, but you go downstairs to the kitchen. There are two ladies working there. One runs the bar and you buy your drinks (soda) from her and one runs the kitchen and makes all your food.

We had great food. We bought four plates and shared all four meals. We had stuffed cabbage with potatoes that had a nice sauce with diced bacon in it. We had sausage stuffed with vegetables and sides of cabbage and other veggies. And we had potato somethings...I call it potato pancakes but Maria said it's potato something-elses. Whatever they were, they were GOOD!

Then we hiked over to CVS and I saw a HUGE Reese's Cups package for 9.99. It was two HUGE Reeses cups. I never saw Reeses that big.

After that we went to Maria's favorite store--Goodwill. I got more books, in anticipation of being shut-in this winter. I now have LOADS of books. All different kinds.

Then I was starting to fade, so it was time to get back to Maria's. I dropped Karin off at home and then hit the road back home. Got home and watched the Huskies football game which I had recorded. Was so happy that they won again.

Sunday Jean and Ryan came up. Ryan worked with Sandy out back, hacking away in the woods, cutting out paths for Sandy to use to walk the dogs as a special treat. They did a great job. We walked the dogs around there later.

Jean and I ran down to Lisbon Landing and I was able to get most of the presents I wanted to get for Sandy. We also went to Home Depot and I got two motion sensor lights for the replace the lights we had there which I hated since the first time we drove up in this driveway.

I installed the lights and they look nice. Jean helped me, as I am always fumble-fingers when I do things like that...and sure enough, I dropped screws, caps and little nuts several times during the process. Jean was able to find them for me, so I didn't have to get up and down from the ladder.

The lights stay on from dusk to dawn in a low glow and when motion is sensed they come up full power for five minutes. Nice. Used to be we were the only house in the neighborhood that had lights on at night out front....the walkway lights leading to the front door. Now, since the break-ins, everyone has some kind of lights on. I don't really like it, but it's a necessary evil I guess.

Got the phone call this AM, my surgery will be next Tuesday. So I will be missing the Ladies Night out Holiday party at Juju's. I go "under the knife" at think good thoughts then please. You only have to think them for about 10 seconds.....that's all I need. I'll handle the rest! HA!

I'm happy about this. I want to get the "show on the road." I'm spoiled...last time I got my diagnosis on Friday, was admitted that night and then had my surgery on Monday. This waiting stuff really gets to me. I'm having trouble sleeping and I'm starting to think too much about this....I need to get over myself!

Congrats to Geno for his 700th win...I think it's now 702. I don't see them losing until well after they have broken Wooden's consecutive win record.

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Steve came this morning and we went up to the Putnam Killingly game. We ran into Romeo and spent time jawing with him. Then at half time we ran into a bunch of guys I knew from high school. I didn't recognize a lot of them at first, but they all introduced themselves and we exchanged hugs. It wads great chatting with them and we talked again about having a combined class reunion the class of '66 and the class of '67....people in those classes hung out a lot together and it makes sense for us to join together.

Then we went down to Waterford to Jean's for dinner. Turkey, stuffing, creamed onions, squash, mashed taters, peas, etc....good eats! I avoided the turnip although I was sorely tempted. I have enough problems with my bowels right now, I don't need to push it! Dessert was delicious too. Taylor and Ryan were there, although Taylor came late as she had an ambulance call to go on.

Taylor is doing so good. She has a new boyfriend who we met later and he is special. Ryan likes him too, very much. She is taking EMT classes and is doing great in school. We are so proud of her. It's so good to see her happy. And, she's driving now and Sandy says she is a great driver, very careful and attentive to the road.

I still haven't heard anything about a surgery date, so I'm guessing it won't be until the 7th. I am going to call nurse Wendy tomorrow though as I have some new symptoms (bloating) and an increase in other symptoms--abdominal pain, bowel difficulties, etc. Sandy thinks they should operate faster, before I end up with the fluid in the lungs again. We'll see what Wendy says.

Tomorrow Deanna and Lorraine may come over. I hope so...haven't seen them in awhile. Pat called tonight and invited us up to their house for dinner tomorrow night. Sandy has to work but I can go. My throat suddenly got quite sore tonight, so we'll see how it is tomorrow. I'm hoping I can go over there.

Saturday I go up to see Maria. We're going to hit the Lithuanian Kitchen. She's been telling me about it for quite some time and I want to go based on her testimony.

Sandy doesn't have least it didn't titer this time. We're thinking maybe she had a flu and we're hoping I don't get it.


Nighty night!

Monday, November 23, 2009

And the answer is....

Surgery first, chemo second.

I'll probably have the surgery either Dec 1st or the following Monday. I haven't been getting the Avastin since March. So, it was exactly how I thought it would be....I would get the Avastin early on and when it came to the "extension" of the study, I wouldn't get it. And that's how it was. I guess the power of suggestion made me ignore the signs that I WASN'T getting more nose bleeds, blood pressure going back to normal, etc.

So I'll have the surgery and then I'll start the chemo...but this time only six rounds of the heavy duty stuff and then I'm DONE!!!! No Avastin in this trial.

I'm glad I'm having the surgery, despite the risks and the side effects (UGH) from the anesthesia and the morphine. I will be rid of my remaining ovary and I assume they will take my uterus out too. Maybe I can get rid of the hot flashes and night sweats. I won't have to go through more ovarian cysts!

I can handle the six rounds of chemo. The thought of having to go another year plus was a bit daunting, but now I won't have to do that. The side effects from the chemo are not pleasant, but at least I know what they are and I know what to do to minimize them. I won't have nose bleeds this time (no Avastin); my blood pressure should stay good and maybe I won't have the diarrhea either. I'll be tired, but heck, it will be winter...I can hibernate!

I'm relieved I have the answer and I like the answer. All's right with the world.

Sending positive thoughts and energy to Harvey and to Tommy! Get better guys!

Nighty night!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Once I thought I was wrong....

but I was mistaken.....

This is when those of you who have continued to read this blog, even after it got tediously boring, are rewarded.

You get to be among the first to hear this news:

I went to see Dr. McCort today. After being made to wait for over an hour, she came in and gave me the news. All I can say is, there must be something about the month of November that is ALL WRONG for me!

Long story short, I do have a cyst....actually two cysts, one on top of the other, on my left ovary. They believe it's cancer. I also have some sort of presence near my liver and some vague spots of stuff on my right side, down near where the bowel was stuck to my uterus last November....and on the left side towards my back. When Dr. McCort did my pelvic exam I told her about how my butt has been sore, she did a rectal exam and she and I both feel "something" and it was sore! That's new since the last time I saw her, a month ago.

The report says these are fast-growing things....which is good, because the chemo they give me is great for killing fast growing cancer cells. That's right, I'm going back on the "big chemo"...the carboplatinum and the taxol....and maybe the avastin. First they have to decide if I have surgery or not. Then, if it's surgery, I have to wait for eight weeks after my last chemo treatment, which (if I have been getting chemo in this part of the trial) was four weeks ago tomorrow.

If the decision is to not do surgery, then I can start chemo as soon as next week. I don't really want to have surgery, as long as the chemo gets rid of the cysts as the doctor thinks it will. She was reading Dr. Lachance's report on the surgery he did last November and he noted a lot of scar tissue from my gastric by-pass surgery. I guess I am the kind of person who produces a lot of scar tissue from surgery. Lucky me! I certainly don't want to add to what I already have if I don't need to.

So, it looks like I'll be spending this winter dodging H1N1....which will be my biggest concern. I'll be avoiding shopping and will be breaking out the mask again for my trips to the hospital for bloodwork.

I'm sure I'll also be regaling you with horror stories of constipation and diarrhea once again. I hope there are no vomiting record of not vomiting since 1986 is still intact and I want to keep it that way.

One thing is for sure, we know what to expect and what to do to keep it from happening, or to make it better if it does happen! Live and learn I always and learn.

So, aren't you glad you hung in here with this blog? Now, you can go out and scoop the next guy on this news. Feel free to tell them I told you all about it! You can even gloat that you knew before so and so did....I know I would if I were you! Your faithfulness has been rewarded.

Of course you know I like to jest. That will never change. Have a great day and a wonderful weekend. I'll see you next Spring sometime.....bald and beautiful!!!

Nighty night!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The latest and greatest

Haven't posted for awhile and someone reminded me today of it. I have been remiss in not writing here about the latest going's on.

As you may remember, I had a CT scan a couple of weeks ago. I think I commented on it, I usually piss and moan about these tests, which I have to have every three months, as I hate having to drink that crap that give you before the test. Even chemo doesn't bother me as much as that crap does.

Anyhoo, I go for the CT scan and I forget about it. So on Monday I get a call from Dr. McCort (my other new doctor). After a lot of small talk (excessive I thought) about our cruise, etc., she finally gets around to telling me why she called.

It seems that the CT scan showed that I have another cyst on my left ovary (the same thing that I had last year, that started me on this whole whirlwind tour) and it was growing large. Also, my bowel was intersussepting....which means "telescoping into itself." I had had this before and was kind of figuring out on my own that it was happening again. I'm pretty sure this is what had been causing me all the pain I was having in my abdomen back in Aug/Sept.

She said that she has to consult with the radiologist as the scan had been read only by the chief resident, so it was only the preliminary report. She ordered a CA125 test for me and said she wants to see me this Thursday. She cancelled my chemo session, which was scheduled for Friday, because she said that if I do have intersusseption going on, the chemo is bad for it...and I may have to stop taking the chemo.

She is concerned that the cancer is back. I am not concerned about this at all. Although if she is right, I know what I have to do. I believe that this IS just a cyst....a pain in the ass cyst (actually pain in the pelvis cyst) and I believe this because she said that they described it as "fluid-filled." If it was HARD, then I would worry. But fluid-filled doesn't scare me!

Anyway, if I had to stop the chemo I wouldn't shed a tear. I am tired most of the time and I'm sure it's due to the chemo. My bowels are all messed up and I'm sure it's due to the chemo. My fingernails crumble, split and flake...and I'm sure it's due to the chemo. I'm sure the chemo is doing other things too, that I just don't recognize at this time.

On top of all this, the other day my abdomen was bulging and when I pushed on the bulge it made squishing sounds like fluid swishing around. I had Sandy listen and she was mystified about what it was. Then I talked with Carol about it and she said immediately: "sounds like you have an incisional hernia." BINGO!!! That is EXACTLY what it is.

So, I think on Thursday I'm going to be hearing about plans for another little surgery--to get rid of the cyst (think I'll insist on them taking the ovary too); what they can do to stave off the intersusseption and fixing that hernia.

I guess I just like to have surgery in November. This time a year ago I was having my surgery and starting my chemo. This November/December it will be all about small repairs.

So, keep a good thought for me on Thursday. I go at 2:00 to see her and find out the news.

Also, keep good thoughts for my Husky pal, Harvey, who had huge surgery yesterday. He has a lot tougher road ahead of him than I do! I know he will make it, he has a positive attitude and a lot of folks rooting for him.

Speaking of Huskies and rooting....tonight ESPN2, they play in the same house as the Lady Vols. Just not against the Lady Vols. Wonder if GMan and Miss Pat will exchange words? Or, please, PLEASE....fisticuffs! We need some excitement in the women's it looks like UConn will be going undefeated again this year. Ho hum!


Nighty night

Friday, November 13, 2009

Laptop returns!

Got the laptop back today. Of course, the guy (who's name is Walt and who is VERY NICE) had to clean everything off of it to save it. He did save my document file and all my pictures...but I lost all the music I had downloaded. Fortunately, it's still on my I haven't lost it completely.

So I had to load AOL on the computer and Mozilla and now my sound isn't working. It's funny, it works when I plug in headphones, but not when I remove the headphones. Oh well, maybe I'll dope it out...and it wouldn't be the worst thing if I had to wear headphones to hear the little dings and "You've Got Mail!" stuff. And when I listen to Sirius on the computer I always use the phones anyway.

Jean and Frank came up yesterday and Jean continued her raking job. Frank helped Sandy put an support thing under the deck. I call it a jack and they call it a loblolly or something like that. Anyway, it looks like the jack my father put in our cellar years ago. The deck was sagging and needed to be supported. Don't know why the home inspector didn't see it, but Frank and my brother Steve sure did. And they were right!

And Sandy and Frank cemented in the pole holder for the clothesline. Finally. Now that it's winter and I REALLY need it! (ha ha)

Lynne came up today and finally got her mussells. This made Sandy happy as it frees up more room in the freezer. We have a lot of stuff in that why don't we eat better meals? We're always settling for cereal for supper, or pizza or Chinese.

Tomorrow night is the next neighborhood Crime Watch meeting and we will be attending. We missed the last one as we were in Tampa. There have been more weird things going on, including a car sitting outside a house down the street in the middle of the night, when the son went out to see what was going on they took off at a high rate of speed, and he heard someone in the woods next to the house. They didn't catch anyone though.

I'm watching The Office. I love that show. Michael is so horrible, he makes me look like a good boss! It cracks me up.

Oh, I just realized that UConn is playing on tv....gotta go!

Nighty night!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Laptops and sniffles

I finally got my laptop down to the computer repair place. I'm sick of the whole thing. If I didn't have chemo brain, enhanced by being 60, enhanced by a cold or allergies or some sort of thing...I could probably dope out the solution to the problem myself. But I do have all those things going on and I just can't do it myself.

I'm using Sandy's laptop and I can see how much faster hers is than mine. And when you unplug it, the battery keeps it going at full speed, unlike mine. Mine has ALWAYS been so slow and the light level drops significantly when I unplug it, making it impossible to use with just the battery powering it. Maybe these guys (or gals) can make it all better for me.

I went to the cardiologist for my follow-up appt and spoke to the office manager about my concerns from the last time I was there. I don't know if I posted it here, but when I went for my appt for the echocardiogram, I had to sit and listen to the office staff bitch and moan about being counseled by someone about a HIPPA violation that they apparently had committed--this went on for some time. Then I had to listen to them gabbing about jokes they were sharing on email that they had gotten from family and friends. Then Ihad to listen to yet another HIPPA violation committed by them as they called another doctor's office to refer a patient--heard that patient's name, Medicare number and diagnosis!

Then the technician who did the echo told me my diagnosis and talked politics almost the whole time I was in there!

I let her know that I thought their office set-up, with the openness of the reception area the workers were a liability not an asset. I told her they needed to put glass up to separate the employees from the waiting room, so they could have privacy. She agreed and said the doctor didn't like them to be separated from the people in the waiting room. WRONG! I told her every place I go to has this type of privacy and where they don't have's trouble.

I don't have much confidence in her ability to change things, especially when she told me that she had heard the tech talking politics and one patient told her that when he talked politics with her (the patient)...she felt her blood pressure going up! Hardly a good thing when one is in a Cardiologist's office!

So, this manager knew about the problem, had heard it for herself and had had another patient complain...and still it happens.

I don't have to go there anymore, I checked out okey doke....but I wouldn't go there again anyway.

Still having symptoms of something. Drip drip drip down the back of my throat, making it sore. Coughing and slightly congested....very tired and draggy. Probably hay fever. We had a good frost this AM...that should help.

Oh, in the early AM today I had to get up with Bubbles as she had to go potty. When we came back in the house, I couldn't help but notice Murphy being very interested in the pile of firewood Sandy brought in. And then Bubbles caught a whiff of something there too and went over and checked it out.

Something tells me that soon we'll be seeing "little visitors."


Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Back from our "adventures," as we call them.

The cruise was great and we would love to cruise again, but not to a hot place like where we just went! It was WAAAY too hot for us!

The hotel in Tampa was very nice and we enjoyed our stay there, in the beginning of our trip and for two days after we docked.

Our first stop was Key West. It was HOT HOT we walked around a bit and then got on a train was a sister tour to the trolley tour Maria took us on in Boston when the Swedes visited last year. It took us all around Key West and they pointed out all the sights: Harry Truman's house, where Hemingway stayed, the bars where Hemingway hung out, etc. Very interesting and a great way to see stuff without having to walk and sweat!

That night a big rain storm blew up and we were delayed leaving Key West for a bit. We found out later that sea water ran into the upper decks and down the elevator shafts, putting three out of four of them out of commission! I know it was raining hard as I sat out on our verandah and watched women running for the boat, screaming because they were getting soaked!

Then we went to Belize and we went on the zipline/rappelling excursion. It was GREAT! It was also very very hot....I was soaked through and through with sweat when we finished. We had to travel an hour and a half by bus to get to the jungle and we saw a lot of sights along the way. Soldiers with rifles, patrolling the streets. Dogs lying flat out in the shade, looking dead. Goats and more dogs.

We had to hike up the mountain to get to the zip lines. We were all in helmets, harnesses, etc. I was sweating. Me, who is so afraid of heights did not have one moment of nervousness about the adventure. Sandy, who is not afraid of heights, was very nervous. I looked down as I zipped over the rain forest, checking out the sights. Sandy held onto to her line, grimly zipping to the next platform.

Then we had to rappel straight down from the platform to the ground below. I don't know how big a drop the first one was, but it zipped right by! Lots of fun.

Vicky Shaw, the comedian who was performing on the ship, was on this trip with us. She and her partner had lunch with us later...they served us a great meal. The ride home was as bumpy as the ride out, and we got to see lots more sights. Belize is really a nation of "haves and have nots."

In Guatemala we went to the beach. The beach was shitty (I think it was a river, like the Thames, not the ocean) but the pool was nice, with water slides and a waterfall. It was 92 degrees and the humidity was 98%. We had a nice coconut drink on the beach that was very refreshing and we stayed in the shade as much as possible. We also had a nice barbecue there, very good.

In Cozumel we went out in a glass-bottomed kayak and then snorkeled along the beach. We could have done without the kayak part, it was SO DAMNED HOT! I would dip my Tilley hat into the water and put it on my head and a few minutes later it would be dry and I'd have to dip it again. The snorkeling was great, saw some neat stuff, but I wish I could have had my glasses on (or worn contacts) so I could see more. Mid-way through the snorkeling I started to crash, energy-wise, but fortunately I got my second wind and was able to make it to shore.

The ship life was wonderful. The food was fabulous and the shows we went to were great. I laughed my ass off at the comedy shows. We wore our zombie outfits for the Halloween Party and participated in the Halloween Parade. We scared the shit out of several people. We didn't say anything, we'd just stare at them...that would really blow their minds!

We decided that we would love to go on another cruise, but not to where it is so hot. It really took the starch out of me to be in that heat. We loved our cabin, our verandah, "our guys" who took care of us. Maybe next time we'll cruise to Alaska, where I've always wanted to go.

When we got home I tried to download my new Windows Seven program to my computer. It told me to uninstall some programs from my computer before I could continue with the installation. I did uninstall some of them and now my computer can't get online and it doesn't recognize that I have an "E Drive" which is the drive that powers the CD/DVD. So that means it won't run the upgrade disc! I will have to get someone from Dell or the Geek Squad to come and fix it for me. I'm so disgusted now. I'm really looking for any excuse to shitcan this computer and get an Apple!

We're happy to be home. We've put on a few pounds from all that eating, so it's time to get busy working out and watching our diets.

I go tomorrow for one of my favorites: a CT scan. Yuck! I don't work again until December, so I have plenty of time to work out and recuperate from our adventures. Have to get work done in the yard, pulling up some plants and planting some others. Also raking. UGH!

Dunno when I'll get a chance to use Sandy's computer again, so I'll say Nighty night and will post again when I can.

Nighty night!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Wednesday was Sandy's birthday. We celebrated by getting up early to go have bloodwork done (both of us) at Backus and then race down to L&M for my appointment with Dr. McCourt. She checked me out thoroughly and said everything looked good. Good news!

I am all set to go to chemo tomorrow and then leave on Saturday for Tampa. Sunday we CRUISE!

Tuesday night we (Frank, Jean, Ryan, Sandy and I) went to 99 to celebrate Sandy's bday. We had a great meal there and Ryan and I compared my i-phone and his i-thingy...I can't remember the name of it does everything the i-phone does, except it isn't a phone. He was impressed with my phone. He gave me some tips on battery life and told me that he uses his while it's in the docking station and charges it every night. I have to charge mine just about every night too.

Today I spent a few hours ironing clothes for Sandy and me for the cruise. Sandy was going to do hers herself, but I intervened. She has not a clue about how to iron, it's pathetic really. She would go out with wrinkled clothes if I let her, truth be told. Jean admits she never taught her how to iron, I'll bet Jean just did it for her, as I am doing now.

My mother taught me how to iron....I didn't learn willingly, but she made me iron and I had to do it to her specs....or else! As a result I am very skilled at ironing. It came in handy when I was in basic training, I would barter with my platoon mates...they would make my bed and I would iron their uniforms. I was also great at spit polishing shoes/boots and polishing brass too.

But I digress.

Something I wanted to share: a poop chart.

When I was in the exam room at L&M I saw a hand drawn chart on the wall. I couldn't see all of it because a towel dispenser was in the way, but I sent Sandy over to check it out. It was a poop chart. It ranked poops from one to six and had drawings of each one....from "well-formed" through the "loose" to the "liquid" or the equivalent. I got a good laugh at that one. Sandy had to admit that even she had never seen a chart to describe the various poops.

Imagine being the person who drew that one.

"What did you do today Mommy?" "Oh, I had to draw poops for the doctors to use."

I want THAT job!

I may not get to make another entry here until we return on Election Day. I'll be busy getting tanned, swimming, lounging, eating, drinking, laughing, ziplining, kayaking, eating, tanning, reading, RELAXING!

Nighty night.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

If there is a God, and that's a BIG IF.....the Yankees will lose tonight.

Went down to Otis Library for the used book sale and went nuts. Bought 22 paperbacks and a few hard covers. If I had known that they were only charging one lousy dime for each paperback I'd have bought a whole lot more! As it was, my order came to $7.25 and I gave them a $20 and told them to keep it. We all know how they need the money!

Then I went to Walmart and bought myself a connecting cord for my i-phone for the car's auxiliary. I listened to my tunes while I drove around.

Then it was off to Kohl's where I got a whole bunch of neat stuff, including slacks, jeans, and some nice tops. Oh, and a cool corduroy jacket. Like a suit jacket. I also splurged on a griddle that they had on sale. I've been looking for one and I supposed I could have asked for one for Christmas (Jean was pissed when she heard I had bought clothes), I went for the "immediate now" and got the griddle.

Now I'll have to have Maria stay over and make pancakes on the griddle. No more making two pancakes for Sandy or whoever and then having them start to eat while I make my pancakes.
As if this happens all the time.

Sandy looked on the NADAC website and found out that Truman took seventh place in both of his Regular runs! That means he was entitled to placement ribbons, but who knew? They never posted the results so you could tell. They finally posted them on line on the 29th, but didn't tell anyone. Sandy found it by accident! We are very proud of him....

Oh, I came home and ordered a new bedspread set for the guest room. It's blue and brown. Very nice. I saw it at Kohl's and wanted to get it, but they only had the display model and no others. So, I got the bright idea of ordering it online. I'm so smart.

Carol and Mark are having a patio built out back of their house. Carol has been fighting with the contractor, who apparently subcontracted the work. Well, they screwed it up big time. They never did the proper prep work and the patio has a 7.5 inch tilt! They had the guy from Geer's come over and look at it. He did it as a courtesy....brought his transit and checked it. He said the patio should have only a 1.5 inch rise. The way they built it, Carol's wine glass will slip right off the patio table! So now they have had to tell the guy that he needs to rip it all out, level it and build it again.

It will look very nice when it's all done and I look forward to many nice evenings out there. But in the meantime.....Carol is NOT in a good mood!

Tomorrow I might go up to Maria's and hook up her VCR or whatever the hell it is that is disconnected! She wasn't feeling good this AM, so I'll see if she's feeling better before I go. Don't want to get sick now!

Yankees and Angels are still tied. I gotta concentrate on the game.

Nighty night!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Friday night....and it's cold!

Guess it was good that I got all that work done the other day. It's been miserable outside ever since. We even had snow flurries here last night!

Today I was supposed to go to Lynne's for lunch, but Sandy wanted me to go to RI to get the dog's dehydrated food as they are running low. She wanted me to go tomorrow, but it's supposed to be raining tomorrow, so I elected to go today. I called Lynne and we will go tomorrow to the used book sale at the Otis Library instead.

The trip to RI was enhanced by music I downloaded onto my i-phone. I finished downloading my CD collection last night. I used the wire Taylor and Ryan left in Sandy's car for their i-pods and I hooked up my phone to my car's auxiliary feature. It was sweet listening first to Anne Murray's Love Songs CD and then to a bunch of songs shuffled. It was a nice mix.

I have downloaded FOUR DAYS worth of music on my phone. It is great...but there is one problem with the i-phone.....the battery isn't worth shit. It drains very quickly and it is a concern. I have done the things they recommend to slow down the draining problem...but some of them are things I'd like to be able to use--like the "locator" feature...which would come in handy if I ever lose the phone...and I just know that I am going to lose it at some point!

Oh...Friday Night Lights is coming back on tv....but only on our satellite company! Wow...we are lucky we chose DirectTV...for some reason they are the only ones to carry the show. We love that is so well done--the characters are very real and the stories are not far-fetched. We're going to be adding that to our recording list.

So tomorrow, it's books, books, books....and maybe on Sunday I'll go to the Flea Market at the Slater Mill. Good rainy day activities. I got some good books the last time I went to the Flea Market, when Maria was with me. I'm reading one of them now: Tom Clancy's Debt of Honor. I have another one: John Grisham's The Street Lawyer waiting for me after I finish the first one. I'm getting back into reading and have been reading a lot lately---reading before I go to bed....which has been keeping me up late!

Today is Katie's birthday. She's 31, which doesn't seem possible. I remember the day she was born....just about everything about it. It was one of the most wonderful days of my life. It's good I didn't know then how things would turn out...that I would lose her and then get her back again. That's life though and I'm happy that she is back in my life.

Right now I have two little doggies on my lap. Rocky and Bubby. Bubbles has been really snarling at Rocky lately....but only at night when I am sitting in the recliner. We have to put her gentle leader on most nights and then she calms down. We have to reinforce her position in the "pack," she must be higher than Rocky. But she carries it too far and the other day she turned on me and snapped twice, just missing my face! We're working with her and she is coming around. Most times she loves Rocky, but at night, when she's tired, she says "no way!" I understand, I'm cranky when I'm tired.

Come tomorrow, we'll have one week until we are off on the cruise. I'm getting so excited and so is Sandy. She told me about a friend from work who lost her passport overboard when she was on a cruise. She's all worried we'll lose (read--Ann will lose hers) our passports! I reminded her that we make copies and put them in each piece of luggage and that we carry ours in their holders around our necks, when we need to carry them! After all I did travel around Italy and Sweden without losing my passport!

Anyway, one more week and we are gone baby gone! YAY!

This morning it was 42 degrees in the bedroom....I did have the fan going in the window. It felt nice under the covers, particularly with Truman at my back, Rocky at my hip and Bubbles behind my knees. A three dog night!

Nighty night!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Long time no see

Went out to eat at Go Fish last night with the gang. When I go out to eat I usually order fish, since we don't cook it too often at home. So what do I order last night? A pizza. I did have the clam chowder though.

We had a good time and are looking forward to our next get-together in Dec at Judy's house, which will be our annual Holiday party.

MAFO was there last night in her wheelchair. She hasn't moved into her new condo yet, her house is up for sale and she's staying at her daughter's house in Black Point. She has a line in her so she can get IV antibiotics....looks like she gets it all the time. That's because "somehow" she got an infection when they did her operation to repair her broken femur.

Sandy is still fighting the cold she's had for over a week. She hasn't missed work and I worry about her. She has had the chills off and on, which makes me wonder if she has a touch of the flu. It's okay if she does--it would be a mild case and then she'd be over it.

Today she wanted to pull up the gardens and haul and stack wood. I got her up at 11am and immediately felt bad that I did so. She was dragging.

So, I got busy and went out and pulled up the corn stalks, made two of them, one for our mailbox and one for Carol and Mark. Then I had Sandy show me again how to start up the tractor and I hooked up the cart and got busy hauling stuff. I pulled down the wisteria and whatever the mystery foliage is that grows with the wisteria. I hauled that away. It took two loads but I got the wisteria, mystery foliage and the bad corn stalks all hauled and piled up out back.

Then we loaded up the cart with wood from out back and piled it into the ring on the deck. I went and got another two loads and piled it up outside of the garage. We're all set for wood for the winter. We aren't going to use that much wood doesn't heat up the living room like it did in the old house--we don't have a blower unit on this fireplace.

I have been having fun with the i-phone--loading lots of my CDs onto it. I have downloaded some great applications too---and I actually USE them! I even downloaded two new songs...ones I paid for: Kings of Leon--I Could Use Somebody and Black-eyed Peas--"Tonight's Gonna Be a Good Night"....those are two current songs I really like. Just when you think that there is no good new music, songs like that come along.

Jeez...Al Martino died. I loved him. He was great in The Godfather Johnny Fontaine. The Godfather "made them an offer they can't refuse" and Johnny got the part in the movie.

Tomorrow we take the dogs to PT...Rocky and Truman. Then the dogs have to go to the vets and get check-ups; nail trims and Rocky is going to have an ID chip implanted. He's the only one of our pets who don't have the ID chip. I think even Mr. Murphy has a chip.

Tonight is "Modern Family" night. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this show. It is so funny....and so well done. It's about time they come up with a great sit-com...I can't stand the crap they've been showing the past few years. I'm so glad I accidentally caught the pilot of this show when we were coming back from Tennessee....I don't miss the show now.

Oh....about the Sox.....WAIT UNTIL NEXT YEAR!!!

Nighty night....

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Little bit of excitement here this afternoon. I was up in the bathroom and heard a huge crash. I knew immediately it was a tree coming down and I knew immediately which tree it was. The dead tree in the back corner that we were planning to take down this fall.

Rocky and Truman were out in the yard. Rocky started barking, Truman did not. And, he wouldn't answer when Sandy called. So she went running out, with me not far behind.

Truman was safe. The tree broke off half-way up and the top half was neatly deposited on the other side of the fence, landing a mere foot away from the fence. We were planning on taking this tree down because we were afraid if it fell down, it would knock down the fence. That didn't happen. We were very lucky.

Sunday I went up to Uxbridge to visit Shirley and Gus. Gus started chemo yesterday for cancer of the bladder. I brought him some comfort items and gave them some tips based on things I've learned. I hope he does well, he already has other health concerns that will make it harder for him. We're keeping positive thoughts for him.

Lynne and I went shopping today and I bought an i-Phone, finally. I've been preparing for this and today was the day. They will be shipping it to me in a few days. Lynne showed me all the apps she has and gave me some good tips. I can't wait to start playing with it. I'll probably drive everyone nuts with it.

We hit Kohl's and then went to Ruby Tuesday for lunch. She had the salad bar and I had the avacado quesidilla, which was delicious! Then she had to go back to work and I went to do more shopping....trying to help the economy!

Sox start their play-off games on Thursday. Here's hoping that Papi can continue his success at the plate, the pitching is solid and the rest of the team just does what they do best. It's going to be exciting.

We haven't turned the heat on yet, but last night I did get out the down blanket and put it on the bed.

OH! I got my hair "highlighted" in blond yesterday. It looks good, if I do say so myself. Once, years ago, I had Lorraine color my hair with a Lady Clairol was a disaster, it came out BROWN! This time I had it done by a professional and I like it. I know I had said I would go platinum, but my hairdresser talked me into highlighting...this way I don't have to worry about keeping up dark roots.

So, I'm just about all set for that cruise at the end of the month. I have to get my clothes out and see if I need to make any purchases. I'm getting excited and I think Sandy is too.

Nighty night!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

We didn't go to VT...the weather was going to be horrid up there. The thunderstorm warning was the last straw. That meant Lily and Bubbles couldn't go. So, we slept in. YAY!

While slicing a roll for lunch yesterday, I sliced my "finger finger"....Sandy had to put a butterfly bandage, a pressure bandage and two bandaids on it to get it to stop bleeding. It doesn't help that my platelets are down now.

We got our "Final Notice" letter from Nancy Wyman, telling us that we have to get our marriage license in to her or Sandy gets dropped from my insurance. Good thing Sandy finally sent it in a couple of days ago!

Now we are going to veg some more by watching the "Family Guy" movie.

see ya!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Sad news from Arizona. Terry and Tom's dog Chloe passed away.

I had called Terry on Monday as we were driving home, to find out how things were going. She told me that Chloe had come up lame and when the vet checked her, they found that she had cancer in her leg--it had almost eaten through the bone. It was also in her lungs. She was still eating and wagging her tail, but they gave her anywhere from three months to two weeks to live.

Chloe was such a sweet dog. We loved her and we know how much the Coney's loved her.

She will be missed.

Not much else going on here. We're resting up and getting ready for our day trip to VT on Saturday for the dogs to run in an agility trial up there. Everyone but Rocky will be in this trial. I may even run Bub or Lily in one or two things. Or, I may leave it for Sandy to do and I'll help with driving. I have chemo Friday morning, so we'll have to see how it goes.

Went to lunch at Harry's with Charmine yesterday and then we went up to the Health Center for our semi-annual Patient Instructor meeting/training. It was fun seeing a lot of my co-workers there yesterday and we got to chat with some of them for awhile, as we got there about an hour and a half early!

I booked our side trips for the cruise today....the zip-line and rappelling tour in Belize (which I have wanted to do for YEARS) and the glass kayak and snorkeling in Cozumel. The kayak is you can see the coral reefs, etc. below you as you paddle around. I may book trips for Guatemala and Key West, but I want to talk with Charmine and Pat about that. We may want to do things together or stay on board the ship and play there. I had wanted to see Mayan ruins but they want too much for that trip. It would be nice, but if I'm not up to the trip I don't want to lose that much money.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


We made it home! One final little glitch--on Rte 2 there was an accident and the traffic was backed up. We bailed out in time and used the GPS to find another way home on the back roads....we saw some stuff we wouldn't have seen and it was fun.

The dogs let us sleep in today. I got up at 8:30 and fed the dogs and let Sandy sleep. I had started doing the laundry from the trip last night and I finished it this morning. So proud of myself. I had it washed and put away by noon time.

We just lazed around today and that was fine with us. Getting caught up on our shows that recorded while we were gone: Housewives of Atlanta; Top Chef; Project Runway; and the Office. You know....all the important shows.

They are going to start showing the old English version of "The Office" on Adult Swim. I'm going to record these...I love Ricky Gervais. And I love, love, love the Office.

Oh....and we watched "Flipping Out"....we love Jeff and Zoila.

Enough of this drivel. I'm off to bed. I have to go to a training session at work tomorrow. I'm going up to Charmine's at noon. We'll go eat at Harry's one more time and then go to work. Should be fun.

Nighty night. Good to be sleeping in my own bed...with my little buddy Rocky and my little sweetheart Bubbles snuggled up to me. Oh...and Sandy too.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sunday in Virginia

We drove through horrific rainstorms yesterday from Tennessee all the way into Virginia. We didn't even get the dogs out of the car to pee and poop until we were almost at our destination. They weren't even interested in getting out in that rain to pee and poop. When we did get them out, Rocky peed and then shivered uncontrollably until we got him back in his kennel...then we didn't hear a peep out of him.

We saw eight accidents along the way...all but one of them were single car things. I think people were either driving too fast for the conditions (they were blowing by us) or they made the mistake of leaving their cruise control on....most of the cars we saw were down in the median, spun around the opposite way. We saw one that happened a few minutes before we got there, they were up the embankment, with their front end pointed towards the road...they had spun around and shot up the hill. We kept on driving, there were cars stopped to help them....but I did feel guilty about not stopping.

There was two accidents that involved two cars and the police were there...lots of police. One accident had ambulances on the scene. All of these just cautioned us to drive slowly and carefully. Despite all of that we only lost a half hour of travel time due to the rain.

We are back in the hotel where we stayed on the way down. This time we are in a different wing and I think they allow smoking somewhere in this section. We have a non-smoking room, but it smells of smoke. The hotel manager insisted on trying to pet the Russells this Sandy said, "Rocky earned his keep!" She pet him and that gave Sandy time to warn her about not petting Truman or Bubbles. I just whisked Bub away, back to the room, leaving Sandy to chat with her about the dogs.

This is the hotel that had the power loss as we were packing up to leave on our way to TN. Something happened in the area and the power went out all around. We had to finish packing in the dark essentially, it wasn't too light out when we were leaving.

Cindy came over again last night. She and Sandy went to Bojangles and picked up our supper, chicken biscuit for Cindy, steak biscuits for Sandy and me. YUM! I haven't had a Bojangles biscuit in years! Bob Duncan used to FedEx them to us from South Carolina years ago.

We had a nice visit with Cindy and made plans for her to come visit next year....hopefully in October. We'll take her around to get good photos. We want to go to Maine. Maybe we'll go up and see puffins!

So, now we head to Pennsylvania. The sun is breaking through, should be a good day for traveling. I have my jeans's cool out there. We froze yesterday, the temperature dropped so fast. Today I smartened up and am dressed for success!

See you soon!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Finally Friday!

It's Friday night and I'm sitting in the hotel room, watching the Sox get beat by the Stankees. Jon Lester just took a wicked hit to his knee and I can see our chances for the post season going down the toilet!

We arrived on Tuesday...but it feels like ages ago! Truman did great in his first two events--he got qualifying ribbons for both of them. He didn't place, but all Sandy asked of him for this whole trip was a Q ribbon and he got two of them right off the bat! His next two runs--in touch and go he may have gotten Qs in too, but no one can tell us the course time! We know he didn't have any faults--but he may not have made the time.

Today he was obviously tired when he ran his Regular runs....I saw him run this AM and he was poking. He just ran the second one and Sandy said he was pooped and he started getting silly. She and he are glad we are not staying for the weekend events, three days is plenty for both of them. The weather has been hot and sticky and that has effected him also. I don't think sleeping in a strange bed helps either.

Anyway, he has exceeded our expectations and we are very proud of him. He is 1o years old after all and he is competing against much younger dogs. He had fun and now he wants to go home. We all do. We will hit the road tomorrow and travel back to see Cindy in VA. again.

Tonight Dana and Keith are coming over in a few minutes and we'll go out to Legends....a steak house around the corner. We've had some new food experiences here....we got Sonic to-go last night; I found a good Mexican place---the burritos and guacamole was great and we got KFC yesterday.

Today I tried a barbecue joint down the road. Their "sauce" was like vinegar....I guess that's how the locals like it. I know that different regions have different tastes in sauces---tomato based in Texas and mustard based in the Carolinas...this sauce was like vinegar. The pork was good and Sandy said the beef was good...the potato salad was awful; the cole slaw decent; and the "corn bread" was more of a johnny cake and not a good johnny cake!

The hotel breakfast is the best. They have all kinds of I had a hard boiled egg and got Sandy cheese danish. They had microwave grits, which I tried...not as good as mine.

I did pretty good in the heat. Today I had to break-down and take my Five Hour Energy drink. It helped me keep going. I even got to go for a swim...finally, in the hotel pool. The water was so warm and relaxing...I hope I don't fall asleep at dinner!

The puppies (Bub and Rocky) are asleep on my lap. Well, Bub is on my lap and Rocky is lying next to me on the couch. It feels very nice.

OH! I almost forgot! Sandy got a phone call on her cell phone today....from the Waterford Animal Control Officer...letting her know that he "had her dog." LILY! She's staying with Frank and Jean while we are gone. Frank had let Nami in the house and Lily was asleep in the yard. He came out ten minutes later and she was GONE! They searched for her for two hours. I called Jean and told her that Lily was at the pound. Jean was hysterical with worry and I know exactly how she feels. I've had that feeling many times thanks to Lily's propensity for escaping. She had gone through the invisible fence and went up Vauxhall St Ext and was at Greentree--a good distance away. Someone must have seen her and called Animal Control. He called our vet--the name is on Lily's tag and they gave him Sandy's cell number.

Jean and Frank picked her up and last we heard she was laying about the house like nothing happened. Dopey dog! All's well that ends well.

Nighty night!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Tennessee TITANS!

We arrived in Tennessee yesterday and Truman ran today in two rounds of of his favorites. He got two qualifying ribbons, so he and Sandy have already fulfilled their goal for coming down here.

We traveled three days to get here. The first day we stayed in a nice Best Western in PA...Harrisburg. We passed through the Delaware Water Gap, where we have not been in years. Day Two we traveled down through W. VA to Dublin VA....near Cindy Vasko's house. We called Annette along the way, after we passed through her old town of Berkley Springs W. Va. We reminisced with her for a bit...good times and bad.

Cindy came over to our hotel and we had a wonderful visit. On our way home, we'll be staying in the same place and she's going to come to visit again. I think we have convinced her to come north for a vacation sometime soon. I really hope she does.

Day Three on the road, heading to Tennessee, Rocky started barking. We laughed and then had to tune him out as he kept it up for a LOOOOOOOOONG time. That is his one vice...the barking. We made ourselves go to our "happy place" to blank him out. The poor guy, he isn't used to traveling and it was making him anxious and nuts!

Fortunately, the medication we got for Bub and Rocky worked and there was no vomitting on the trip. We hope this continues on the way home....we did bring extra pillows for them and extra covers for the pillows--we have pillows in their kennels--that's what they lie on.

Tomorrow Truman runs two rounds each of tunnelers and touch and go.....two of his absolute favorite events. I think he is being very "business-like" down here. He knows what his job is and he is bent on doing it. He made excellent time today, despite the fact that the course is on sand that hadn't been packed down yet.

The runs are in a huge indoor arena where they display Tennessee Walking Horses. We rented a horse stall to house the dogs/kennels and all of our stuff. It is pretty cool in there, we have their fans going--there is electricity in the stall. I brought my laptop to the stall because they have wi-fi at this site, but it doesn't reach the stalls. That's okay, I read my Kathy Griffin book....almost finished it this afternoon.

Now I am pooped. Had Mexican food tonight, from a restaurant down the street, to-go. I need to take a shower and hit the bed. The dogs are exhausted....all the new noises, people and dogs going by the stall has tired them out.

I have confidence that Truman and Sandy will do well tomorrow. I'm filming their runs and stay to see other dogs run. There are several folks we know from trials in New England and we even have a Team New England t-shirt that they made up for us. I'm listed as "kennel help." Another title to add to my name!

Okay, enough of this.....Nighty NIGHT!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Friday before the trip's been a week since I last Carol so nicely pointed out. It's been a busy week--had my chemo last Friday, went to the "mussell party" on Saturday and came home with two pans of mussells-one for me and one for Lynne (who couldn't make it). That reminds me, I still owe Joanne $5! Wooops!

Well, I'll have to get the $$ to her tomorrow as we leave Sunday AM for Tennessee. We will be staying in Pennsylvania Sunday night and then driving to Dublin VA on Monday...where we will get to visit with Cindy who we haven't seen in over 10 years. It doesn't seem possible. Thanks to the internet we have kept in touch pretty regularly.

On Tuesday we head to Tennessee...where the NADAC national champsionships will be. We will be heading back home next Saturday....reversing our route and stopping again near Cindy for another visit---hopefully.

Some things about the dogs. Rocky and Truman have been going to "Wizard of Paws" which is a place where they do physical therapy on dogs. Rocky has been going to work on his left leg and right pelvis...which were hurt when he got hit by the car. He has been making great progress....and today I went to see him workout on the treadmill in the water! He was great!

Sandy works out with them on a ball in the cellar. This helps their balance and to develop their core I do when I work out on the ball. It's great for inner core and for flexibility. She does exercises with each of the Russells...with Bubbles being the star!

Truman is getting therapy for a back and shoulder problem. He is doing really well and is cleared to compete at the agility trial. Which is good, because he loves to compete.

Sandy has been working out with all the dogs in the backyard---doing tunnels courses. Truman is going to run in the tunnels event, so it's good practice for him and good exercise for Bub and Lil. Rocky learned how to do tunnels too....and seems to love it. When he's all fixed (as much as he can be) he will start to take agility classes.

Sandy bought these ceramic magnet jackets for the two boys....for Truman's back and for Rocky's leg and pelvis. They look cute in these jackets...they hang way down all around give the area maximum exposure to the effect of the magnets.

I ordered a magnetic shirt for myself. I don't usually subscribe to "new age" medicine...but years ago my nurse practitioner convinced me to try these magnets on my knees. I got the ceramic magnet sleeves for my knees and damned if they didn't help! They heat up the area just the right amount to promote healing. I had a wrap for my foot too and it helped my heel spurs. So I can see how it might help the dogs. And a shirt could help my neck and my back.

We also got some new medication for Bub and keep them from vomitting when they ride in the car. The poor dears, they take turns puking and sometimes they puke at the same time. Then it's stop the car, clean out the kennels, fluff up their pillows and hope that it doesn't happen again. We've tried lavender oil, ginger, pepcid and now this medication. When Bub eats the ginger she doesn't throw up. But now she won't eat the ginger anymore. Rocky is more afraid than having trouble with the motion. We tried them at a low dose today and it worked good..even though we were on back roads that were windy and bumpy. We're hoping it works on the long trip..without giving them any negative side effects.

Rocky got out of the fence the other day...Sandy opened the gate and he flew out. Fortunately I was up at the mail box and he just came flying up the driveway to me. Good thing there weren't any dogs or people going by...he would have kept on going. As it was he came right to me, all waggy tailed and happy. I scooped him up and we got the mail. Sandy and I heaved a big sigh of relief! He did look cute running towards me...his bad leg kicks out to the side making him look all galoopy when he runs. Despite this impediment he runs faster than any dog we've ever had! Can't imagine how fast he'll be when he's at full strength.

Now I have a little snugglebug up on my shoulder like a baby....Bubbles. She comes up here when something makes her hinky. And it seems every night something makes her hinky! I'm sorry that she's nervous, but I do enjoy having her snuggle with me.

I've been playing Big Brain Academy and I'm doing much better. It really helps to stimulate your brain...feels good.

I'm reading Kathy Griffin's book and it is SO GOOD! I got a few paperbacks to take with me to Tennessee...I figure I'll have time to read them in the hotel and when we're waiting for Truman's turn to run. I haven't been reading too much lately and it feels good to be getting back into the reading mode. Sandy reads every's her favorite thing to do, sip her tea, read and have her dogs on her lap.

Well...I have to work on my list of things to bring on the trip. I'm really looking forward to this--we haven't been on a road trip like this since the last time we went to Nova Scotia and that was over ten years ago! Well....I guess Italy was a road trip too...we did drive while we were there. But that was in 2004 so it has been awhile. And it has been over ten years since it was just us in the car going for days.....good thing I'm on the new antidepressant and they upped my dose---it's helping me to be all mellow and enjoying things....instead of worrying and bitching about things!

So, I'll say nighty night. I will be bringing the laptop when we I can do updates on the road.

Nighty night and GO SOX!