Life Is Just So Daily

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Chemo 4: Done.

Why, yes, it is in poor taste.
But, whatever.
Got your attention, didn't it???


Mom update:
Chemo 4 was increased from the 30% strength that she got in Chemo 3.
Chemo 4 was not quite the breeze that Chemo 3 was.

Remember when she had Chemo 1 & 2?
Remember when they knocked her down, made her sooooo sick & damn near killed her? Well, that's the genetic marker hypersensitivity to the 5-Fu thing. So, they titrated it down to 30%, and now they are slowly increasing it to get it into a therapeutic range. How do they know if it's in the right range? Well, these super-expensive blood tests that are mailed to Salt Lake City with the geneticists looking at them.

Speaking of therapeutic ranges....Mom's been on coumadin (blood thinner) to keep her blood from getting too thick & clotting. Well, even when the dose was doubled, she wasn't staying in therapeutic range. Dr.W even had Mom take her actual Rx coumadin PILLS to the pharmacist to make absolutely certain that they were coumadin and not some random fluke mistake that she was taking something else. Yes, she's been taking coumadin...and now, she's getting Lovenox injections at home too, administered by PawPaw. What troopers!!!!
Doin' what they can to keep the blood clots at bay.

Mom's current worst fear: she'll accidentally cut herself shaving & bleed to death from a teeny-tiny-little cut in the shower, and she'll be found down, in the shower, pale & naked.
I say: valid fear. Give up shaving, opening envelopes, handling knifes, or paper for that matter, avoid dart boards, ill-fitting shoes, thumb-tacks... Stay home. Eat only with a spoon. Pad the walls. Stay in bed.
I'm just sayin'....

In other good news: My mamasita, the Scarf Style Icon that she is, has been asked, along with Dammit Arlene, to teach others about the scarf styling & what not through the cancer center there where she lives.
How cool & flattering is that!???

She's also considering walking in their town's Relay for Life, but unfortunately, it will be on a post-chemo weekend, so I am not sure it's going to work out for her this year.
We'll just have to see what we can do about that...

That's my Mamasita Update.
4 Down.
We're 1/3 of the way there.

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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Cool = Loco.

Thanks, Amanda!

Amanda packed Gage a little snack... He had to figure out the puzzle before eating the little crackers. (FYI: Gage can't read yet.)
Above is what we came up with....
Gage is loco....I mean, cool.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Truth About the Zen Spa in Rockwall.

Should anyone google "Zen Spa in Rockwall Complaints" or "Zen Spa Rockwall", or "Zen Spa & Skin Care" or "Zen Spa Coupons" or "Zen Spa+Rockwall" or "Zen Spa in Rockwall has a super-sucky man who runs the place" or "Suck It, Zen Spa", I hope they end up on my blog.
I will NEVER return to the Zen Spa in Rockwall.

We had a gals day planned there... 4 of us gals getting our fingers & toes done. That's 40 fingers & 40 toes that they made money on that day.

But, at least 10 of those fingers & 10 of those toes will get manicures and pedicures elsewhere based on an interaction with the male manager, owner, pompous-ass-who's-just-paid-to-walk-around-and-be-a-general-tool that I had the displeasure of being exposed to that day.

Here are some pics from the event:

Yes, I know. It seems contradictory that I would post pics of us all smiling & what-not, when all I have to say are negative things about the place.
I agree.
I'm actually quite disappointed in myself, and my own response to the previously referenced pompous ass.

Now, let me get to it: the story.

So, we had a gals date planned, and suddenly, it was going to be possible for my mom to come into town that same weekend for a quick visit. So, Mom wanted to tag along for the fun gal's outing. Mom's getting chemo, and just can't risk infection right now, so getting a manicure or pedicure at a public place where let's be honest, there IS an increased risk of cross-contamination, improper cleaning, etc. Well, she can't take those kinds of risks right now. So, she wanted to join us, and just enjoy the conversation and gossip and all that goes along with a mad-gab-get-together.

So, we arrive. Mom & I were last to arrive. The 3 ahead of us were seated. When it was my turn to be seated, we headed that way, and I moved a standard seating chair over to be near the pedicure chairs. I handed the chair to the man who was showing me to my seat, and I asked him to place the chair in the space between where I was to be seated, and Amanda (who is seated to my right in the above photos). I would have put the damn chair there myself, but he was in my way. When I asked him to put the chair there, he said, "No." Long pause. Then he repeatedly said that my mother needed to sit in the front of the spa & wait for me to be done.

What I wish I'd done:
Dropped the bottle of his nail polish that I was holding, and simply walked out.
Dropped the bottle of his nail polish that I was holding, and given him a piece of my mind.

What I did instead: slowly closed my mouth as my jaw was hanging open, and said, "Well, we'd like her to be back here with us" and "can't she just sit back here with us?" Things of that nature. I didn't want to ruin the event for the other girls, but at the same time, I didn't really stand up for what I felt was just completely rude.
His response wasn't even what was so completely rude. It was his tone when he spoke to me and my mother, his general disrespect for both of us, and his mannerisms. If he'd said, "I am so sorry, we can't do that because the fire marshall....blah, blah, blah" I would have been accepting. If he had extended one cell of brain power toward problem solving and spoken in a kind tone, I would not likely have walked away from this experience with the awful feeling that I have about the Zen Spa.

So, in the end, I didn't walk out.
I got the mani & pedi that I'd scheduled.
I sat & chatted a bit with the gals, all the while steaming inside & wishing I'd walked out instead of sitting down.
I tipped the gals who did my nails.
But I didn't speak another word to him.
My mother wouldn't even look at him.

To the world I say: there will never be any circumstance under which I need my nails done so badly that I would EVER return to that place. If I do happen to step foot through those spa doors, it will only be to re-create some Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman scene! "Big Mistake! Huge!"

In the future, when or if the topic of salons in Rockwall comes up in conversation, I will tell EVERYONE WHO WILL LISTEN just what an AWFUL and rude experience I had when I was a customer there.

Nail Salon to AVOID:
Zen Spa & Skin Care


Courtney's 30th Birthday....80s theme!

Okay, so remember when I posted these 80s themed invites???

(I covered up the RSVP/Address info...)

Well, the 80s theme for the party was a hit.

We all had fun getting into costume.

The birthday gal & husband, Joel....

Amanda & Patrick...

Trey & Annabeth...

Kara & Claire...

And, Hubby & I went as the "Preppy 80s Couple"...

There was splatter paint & fun 80s candy...

Fun games, like Twister...

And then there was "The Stache."

{AKA: The last holdover porn casting agent from the 70s.}

Clothing: actually taken from his closet.
Glasses: True Ray Bans from the 80s (oooh, maybe 70s).
Mustache: Top part of his former goatee with a nice coat of mascara on top.
The cheesiness of the character: All Hubby, of course. He was cracking us up all night!

So, I didn't get pics of all the party-goers, but man, what a great & fun theme!

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Saturday, March 26, 2011

Preview....of Hubby.

Man, I've got a collection of funny photos to share with you all, but I'm not going to blog about it now. I'll just leave you with a tiny taste of the event. I present for your viewing pleasure---my Hubby:

Super Bowl Party 2011

Well, I told ya I had some blogging to catch up on!

The kiddos....{well, most of them...}

How cute is Little B????

Jessica's Cookies....

Come to find out, I really didn't take very many pictures from that night at all!

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Thank You, RMH., yesterday I had a bad day.

Just---work junk.

At the end of the day, I kept analyzing, tracing, re-tracing....what could I have done differently? Did I go forth with a cheerful spirit?
I took it all home mentally.

What helped?
Climbing into bed with my son by my side with a big bowl of popcorn and watching a movie until our eyes were heavy.
Then---when it was time to sleep, it was like my mind just took flight. The thoughts were once again all a-swirl in my mind.

And this morning, I got to work.
I keep this little copy of The New Testament in my top desk drawer. I pulled it out, thirsty for something. A bit of encouragement to get me through the day.
What did I find?
Exactly what I needed when I needed it: a sticky note from my friend & co-worker at my previous job: "Romans 12:1-2, Colossians 3:23".

Thanks, RMH.
That's exactly what I need today.


Chemo 4

Mom update: Chemo 3 was not nearly as bad as Chemos 1 & 2. If her lab values are good today, she's set for go on Chemo 4 for today!

Yaaaaay for the titrated medicine!
And FYI: "You ain't NEVAH seen somebody rock a scarf the way MY Mamma rock a scarf!"


Cook It UUUUUPPP!!! with Gage.
He got this chef set for Christmas, and it's so cute!

{now, Gage, this is one of those things where I'd like you to do as I say, and not as I do. Grow up & cook. Enjoy it. Cook for your family. You know Mommy doesn't cook a, I want you to enjoy cooking for your family when you grow older, okay?}

To the blog readers out there, I'm working on getting Gage's "Cooking Show" video uploaded.
It's pretty cute too, though he's talking in some kind of baby voice during the video. {grating, I know...} When/if I get it uploaded---forgive him for the baby-voice.


Monday, March 21, 2011

A bit more painting...

We've done a bit more painting around here.

And, we've got a bit more to do, but it's fun.
We love how just a little bit of paint can make such an impact. Good times.

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Sunday, March 20, 2011

It's Official.

SOMEONE is riding exclusively with no training wheels now.

Congratulations, Baby.

This all took place sometime in January.
I'm slowly but surely catching up on blogging!


Friday, March 18, 2011

Valentine's Day 2011

So, yes, clearly, I have some blogging to catch up on.

And, as an aside, I can't figure out how to crop photos, or edit them on this new computer. My old photo program that I used isn't on this new computer yet, so you'll all just have to bear with me....

Gage & his Valentines....
He did all the writing himself. He makes the letters so large, so if there's an extra letter that needs to go on there---he just puts in somewhere else on the card. So cute.
Here are Valentines for Lilee & Piper (two girls from his class).

He worked so hard on those little cards. It was precious!

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Hello, New Laptop!

I got my new laptop.

Well, actually, I got it last night.
Got it home.
Wouldn't start up.
Good times.

Returned it today.
Got a new one.

We had crap for luck trying to connect to the internet.
Got that figured out.

Now I'm blogging from the kitchen.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Yaaaay! Chemo 3!

Well, mom had chemo 3 yesterday.
Meds titrated down.
Feeling pretty good she said.
NOTHING as bad as the last two treatments.



Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Chemo 3???

Update on mom...

As I post this, she's doing pre-chemo blood work. may be the day for chemo 3!

Those GI symptoms: gone.
Overall, says she's feeling great & ready to get this show on the road.

New chemo plan: the 5-Fu will be titrated down to a lower strength.

So....that's the update on that.

Life without a laptop: ugh!
But, hopefully I'll get a new one by the end of the month.
Honestly, I've been so busy lately that I haven't made the time to go laptop shopping, so I don't yet even know what I want.
I'm not a mac person, so just don't even throw that out there.


Thursday, March 03, 2011

Doom & Gloom & a little bit of good stuff....


Mom update….

Well, mom met with the ob/gyn & oncologist yesterday.

Bloodwork: have to hold off on chemo. While her ANC is 7,000, there seems to be an imbalance of bacteria in her GI tract causing her not to be at her very very best to tolerate chemo right now. Liver function seems to be improving! What a blessing.

Ob/Gyn report: what was seen on the sonogram was possibly part of her GI tract, as her anatomy is now shifted & changed from her colon resection, may be an encapsulated appendix (though he thinks that would have been a remarkable finding during her surgery, during her previous CTs, etc.), and says that it would be rare, rare, rare for it to be cancerous since she’s had so many CTs (post op, pre op, etc. and nothing showed up.) Oncologist has advised that it needs to be re-sono’d at 1 month & 3 months to note any changes. He feels that it is not worth interrupting her chemo treatments for an exploratory surgery or ovary removal at this time. And just to note, her left ovary is fine. Her right is atrophied. She doesn’t care b/c she’s not using them anyway (she says). They did a blood test for ovarian cancer (which they say is not always high for cancer patients, and is not always 100% accurate, but still relevant, yada, yada, yada), and it came back negative. They will retest that at 1 month & 3 months. Mom now feels more comfortable just waiting & watching as that has been what was advised by both the oncologist & ob/gyn, with input from the surgeon who did her colon resection.

Chemo report: well, I mentioned---they’re holding off. Future chemos will be at 30% strength. Will that be strong enough? Yes he said because the cancer is made up of the same genes that indicate the hypersensitivity to the drug. So, at this point, they’ve shocked the mokey out of the cancer with one drug, but not all 3 drugs. So, her future chemos will be 30% of the 5-FU, and the other two drugs at regular strength. Still the same # of treatments in total, so if she gets one next week and continues on track, she’ll be done mid-July.

What else? She’s tired a lot. Nauseated all day every day. Lingering effects of the high levels of the 5-FU in her system. She’s bald. But, her weight is up to 109! Woohooo!

In other doom & gloom news: death to the laptop.
Bought a new charger.
That wasn't it.
Bought a new connecter piece to where the charger goes.
That fixed the charging issue, but a new issue developed, and it's just a pain in the rear! $400 to fix. Yeah....I'll pass. For a little more I could have a brand spankin' new laptop with everything I want on it. I'll opt for that! So, a new laptop is on the horizon.
The good news: Poppa (a computer wiz) is able to get my pics off there that haven't been backed up or saved to snapfish yet, so that's good.


Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Big Day for Mom

Well, Mom's got a big day today.
Friday she had a gyn appointment to check on an ovarian cyst. Monday they sent her in for a sonogram related to that. Well, the sonographer and radiologist found something suspicious on the opposite ovary. Well, not on it, but near or right under it. My poor Mamasita can't catch a break. So, today she goes in for her oncology bloodwork, then mmeets with the gynecologist, then meets with the oncologist to discuss the new plan, and MAY have a new or different chemo today.
Like I said---big day. She's going to be so tired....