Sunday, September 30, 2012

My mouth and face feel less sore today, so I'm quite relieved.  The first meal I tried to eat was dinner last night, which was tricky and hurt my tooth every time was I wasn't careful enough.  No real surprise that it took me quite a while to finish, what with needing to cut tiny pieces to deliver to the back of my mouth, and then having to think about how I chewed each one.  
I've always tried to take good care of my teeth, because as Dad used to say, "Be true to your teeth when you're young and they won't be false to you when you're old."  But on a certain level I took them for granted.  Sorry for that, teeth!

We will be leaving in a bit on our trip up to the North Rim, Antelope Canyon, and (possibly) other points north into Utah.  We have no real itinerary after the first couple of days (it all depends on my energy level) but you can be sure we'll take this exit if we see it!

I'm still quite tired in the afternoons, and most days I nap.  
At the very least I get horizontal and read or watch TV...
at home in my own bed!  :)

Not sure if I will have internet access where we stay. Wait....let me amend that.  Not sure if I will be able to figure out how to access the internet where we stay.  So I may not be posting until we return home.  But I sure hope to take lots of pretty pictures, which (of course) I will share.
  Think of me being on a grand adventure: 
NO doctor visits, NO medical procedures, 
and (major bonus!) getting out of the house!  

Pretty exciting all the way around!!!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

 Bunco, fun as always, ended at 9:30 last night, and I was the first one to leave (way past my bedtime these days!) Walking home along Yorkshire I tripped over a rock and went down hard. In addition to banging up my right hand, right knee and left shin, I did a full face plant - as a result I knocked one front tooth loose and chipped several others.

 My front tooth was hanging at a weird angle and also considerably lower than the other front tooth. As soon as I got home I called our dentist, and within half an hour he met us at the office! (I thought he'd tell me to come in tomorrow, but apparently we needed to do it right away to give us any hope of saving the tooth.)

The good news is that I broke the bone and not the tooth. He got the tooth back into place in the socket without too much difficulty and then put a brace on it; hopefully in 8 weeks or so when the brace comes off all will be well, although at the very least there will have to be some fillings. I did get nervous when he mentioned other possibilities (root canal, implants, etc.) in case the tooth doesn't 'take'.

In the meantime he wrote me a scrip for some antibiotics 'just in case' I start to get an abscess, so we're still good to leave on our mini trip Sunday.  (Which reminds me... I may be off the grid for several days, but don't worry about me!)

 And one hour after my latest escapade (no comments, mom) we were heading back home, (almost) as good as new. Another casualty of my fall was that I dropped my Thermorest but I couldn't find it, and neither could Tom when he went off to search for it.

No idea how much my after-hours clumsiness is going to cost, but I'm beyond grateful that Dr. Johnson was available, although I did feel guilty about disturbing him on a Friday night. But he was most gracious and said that's his job; in fact he said he would have been upset if I'd waited to call until today, when it would have been too late to save the tooth.

We've always been happy with him, and this is just another example of the excellent care Dr. Johnson gives his patients.
This morning my jaw and face are sore, and eating may be a tad difficult (Tom was planning corn-on-the-cob with dinner tonight, but obviously that's not going to work for me) but otherwise I feel pretty good.  As soon as Walgreen's opens I'll drop off my Rx, and then it's off to the movies with Patti.

Hope YOUR weekend is off to a great start!

Friday, September 28, 2012

Yesterday the rheumatologist was very happy to hear that my all-over body itch is (finally) under control... but certainly no happier than I am!

She ordered a Vitamin D bloodtest (which I took care of this morning) as a baseline before I start on the Vitamin D and Calcium that oncologist wants me to start, although there's some question about the amounts of those.  (Plus after looking at the numbers on the bottles at the store I'm more confused than ever.)  

And after looking at my Dexa numbers (my osteopenia is almost at the osteoarthritis level) she wrote a scrip for Fossamax.When I dropped off the new Rx today I had hoped to pick up the Arimidex, but the insurance company is still balking at that one (something about prior authorization.)  Not an issue yet since I'm supposed to wait until my radiation rash is all cleared up before starting it, but I would still like to see it resolved before it does become an issue.

Yesterday while I was way on the west side of town I also picked up a refill of Sapphire's meds.  Since I was ahead of schedule 
I stopped in at the thrift store next door, and found the most adorable (and brand new, tags still attached) ladybug outfit (zip up jacket and pants) perfect for some lucky little girl. (You can't see the black pants because they're still attached to the back of the jacket.) 
Of course I ended up buying it, for only $3.50.  How could I pass up a bargain like that?  With its own jacket it's the perfect costume for a chilly Halloween evening.

Tonight is irrigation, but at a ridiculously convenient time, early evening. 
In preparation I used to riding mower to take care of the Back 40, center ditch, and all around the guest cottage, Tom did all the weed-eating, and Alex (whenever he finally appears today) is slated to mow the main ditch.  But one of them will have to take care of letting the water go - I have other plans for the evening.
It's Bunco with the neighborhood ladies tonight!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Yesterday I finished Chris Bohjalian's latest novel "The Sandcastle Girls", about the 1915 Armenian genocide. While I grew up hearing about the 'starving Armenians' I didn't really know much about the actual history.

Tonight I have started "Nothing Daunted" by Dorothy Wickenden, which recounts her grandmother's experiences as a 'society girl' from New York who moves to a small Colorado settlement in 1916 to teach school. Should be interesting!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Of course those of you who have been following my blog (and have put up with my whining and complaining) are well aware of what the fuss is about!

So it's a VERY HAPPY DAY for me.

At the oncologist's this morning I learned that I can't have tofu any more because it's high in estrogen (who knew?) and we're trying to keep estrogen out of my body. I'll need to start taking daily calcium and vitamin D supplements (because of the new daily med I will be taking for the next 5 years to block my estrogen production) and also have to get a bone density test before my next chemo as a baseline before starting on the Arimidex.

I was able to get the oncologist to add the pre-chemo steroid back into the mix for today's infusions, and I am heartily hoping that it solves the systemic itching issue!

It was pretty empty when I got to chemo but I still tried to get a party going with the M&Ms I brought to celebrate today being my last day of radiation! It was bagel day there so I got to eat a real breakfast after all (thought I might have to breakfast on chocolate...)

I was finished with chemo by 10:00. The benedryl did not make me the least bit sleepy (weird how sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn't) so I was able to drive right away (last time I had to sit around for an hour or so) which meant I had plenty of time to head home before this afternoon's appointment.   

Marcela called, and we worked out a schedule for her early October visit (with her mom and sister) from SoCal. Something else to look forward to!

Today's smile:

Like Father, Like Son

Monday, September 24, 2012

The house is delightfully clean, thanks to a 'visit' today by Bella and her crew.  Too bad it won't stay this way - but I'm sure going to enjoy it while it lasts.

There's been a change in tomorrow's schedule.  Chemo called a little while ago to see if I could move Tuesday afternoon's appointment from the afternoon to 8:00 a.m.  A call to radiation verified that they would be able to move my (LAST!!!!!!!!!) session from 9:45 to the afternoon, so I'm all set.
Since we'll be eating dinner early tomorrow (in preparation for my Yom Kippur fast, which starts at sundown) it works out much better not to have to be at chemo until late afternoon - especially since I have to wait for the benedryl effects to wear off before I can drive home.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

This morning Patti and I went to see "End of Watch", which we both enjoyed. 

(My first choice would have been "The Word" - except that the only showing today at our neighborhood theater is at 9:00 p.m., which is around bedtime!)  Sometimes we are virtually the only ones in the theater on a Sunday morning, but today we had a fair amount of company.  Maybe because the movie just opened this weekend?

Monday morning I'll zip over to the lab as soon as they open and get my pre-chemo blood drawn.  Then it'll be radiation time.  I'm pretty jazzed about the idea of finishing up in just 2 more days.  Here's where I am now:

But after tomorrow, that little red sliver shrinks even more.

You know what that means, right?

Saturday, September 22, 2012

I am a happy camper - I got a great night's sleep, which does wonders for anyone.  When I woke up in the wee hours of the morning I popped a Lunesta (no worries about having to be on time for radiation) and slept until Alex's alarm went off around 10.  So I expect to get a bunch of stuff done today (for a change.)
Before Alex headed off to work today he recounted a dream.  There was some sort of seismic event that opened up a big crack in his bedroom, and a scorpion kept crawling out of it.  Unfortunately said scorpion would escape back into the depths of the earth before Alex could kill it.  When Alex went to Tom for help, Tom was more into explaining about the reasons for the crack than dealing with the scorpion.  Just one of the 'perks' of having a geologist for a dad.

I good a good laugh when I saw this picture friend Cindy V. posted on FB.  My drawing nonability (I am still stuck with laughable stick figures, lollipop trees, and generic one-shape-fits-all animals) is just one reason (out the MANY) why I am not a tattoo artist.
BUT after reading the children's book The Dot, I feel much better about myself!  It's a must-read for art teachers, but also a wonderful read for anyone dealing with kids. 

Happy First Day of Fall (to anyone who lives where it IS Fall!)  

We here in Arizona tend to drag out Summer. Could be worse...only expected to be 104 today.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Up early again, around 3:00, but since I was enjoying my current book (which I have since finished) I didn't mind.   

While I admit it did take a little while for me to really get into it (unlike some books, which grab me on the first page), once it got going I was hooked.  So you might want to put The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D. (by Nichole Bernier) on your 'to read' list. 

Tom fixed the broken support in my penguin cabinet so I've been able to start moving some of the pile off the couch; after I finish up this post maybe I'll get the rest of them relocated.  That shelf looks a bit different from the others now that it's all clean and shiny, but I'm not the least bit motivated to do the remaining five shelves.  I'll just 'let it snow'!

I get a break from the radiation for the weekend, and then 
only 2 more sessions!

Yesterday was dogs, so today might as well be cats. (Sorry, Bana.)

This was how Sapphire (and Alex!) looked 16 years ago.  
They've both changed....

Now you know

The dog was right (for once.)

On the other hand

Payback's a bitch!

Her endless fascination with boxes strikes again.

Here, let me help!

And I saved my personal favorite for last!