Wednesday, August 31, 2016


Yes, I guess I am waiting for the other shoe to drop.
Friday I saw my cardiologist and all is well. In 6 months I'll have   an Echo and  my bloodwork and doctor's observations and visit will be more in depth.  
Monday I saw my oncologist and was happy to hear that my bloodwork is good. The numbers that we want to go down are!!! One test mainly, for my liver was over 2000 when I started, pretty darn high, it is now over 300, 117 is normal. YEAH!!!! Both of my tumor markers are coming is near normal. But no, the cancer will not be cured.....but we can pray to control it for many years!!!!!!!  My prayer. This almost makes me want to return in another month for more bloodwork, but my appointment is for another 6 months. I guess it is good that the dr does not think he needs to see me every 6 weeks or so.
I'm just afraid....when will the numbers go in the opposite direction??? When will the other shoe drop? How long can I continue to do the things I want (to a percentage of what I really want to do)? Since I don't drive any distance I am not going very many places, seeing many things. I've said it before and I will say it again "I miss doing things with my friends". I am still me!!! I am an introvert and am comfortable with doing/going by myself, but that has boundaries now. I work slowly, I tire easily, am tired after supper,  I go to bed early and sleep late. I can tell my body is different, nothing I can really explain....but some things have been affected.  I try to get my 5000 steps a day, some days I do.  My appetite is pretty darn good though!
This is my journey and I'm stickin' to it. I am not complaining, just telling it how I see/feel it. 
Thanks for coming along.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

A Killer's Grace

Don't think you're going to rush through this book as you watch the kids play in the pool. It is thought provoking: what is right? why do people commit horrible crimes? who should be held responsible? what happens to the victims and their families? what does innocence mean? Is there a God? is it ok to kill a killer? Is forgiveness possible? Kevin Pitcarin, a journalist lives in the high desert and does a lot of walking and thinking in the early morning hours with his dogs; I loved reading the descriptions of the landscape. Pitcarin receives a letter from a convicted killer which has him rethinking innocence, evil, his past, the victims of crime, pondering the meaning of this................All the while he is battling with  his own demons from his past.
This book makes the reader think. 

 Following are a couple of reviews from other authors: 
“…a work of fiction, it was inspired by a real letter from a serial killer…important and compelling… will stay with you long after the last page.”
—Kam Aures, reviewer for Rebecca’s Reads

“A Killer’s Grace delves deep into the human psyche… Those who have experienced abuse or violence in their own lives will not only relate to the story, but may find their own self-discovery journey unfolding alongside Kevin’s.”
—Paula Renaye, author, Living the Life You Love: The No-Nonsense Guide to Total Transformation

Ronald Chapman is a new to me author. 

Sunday, August 28, 2016

End Of Summer Weekend Pics

Just another weekend at my house.

A friend gave me a Georgia peach tomato to try.
Yes, it's ripe and yes, it is just as yellow on the inside. I'd say it's just a little milder than a red tomato. 

 Saturday morning we got up to rain....drat! I had invited my 3 grandsons over to play that day. After we ate lunch it stopped raining and later the boys, including their dad, went outside to play for a a bit. We also played some board games. I seldom see them but I am hoping to change that.
 Just recently the public library placed a Little Free Library at the school across the street. I asked the older boys to pick out some books to donate. They did a good job! The little library is 1/2 full  and my book shelf is a little cleaner.....a win, win situation.

Jalen stayed overnight.....he set my alarm for 6:30AM but I shut it off when it went off and we both fell back to sleep for 3 hours. After we got up and were dressed he finished his scrapbook and we were just about to have a late breakfast when dad called to say he had to go home b/c mom was coming soon to pick them up. Our plans were foiled and he was not happy. I told him to look on the bright side and not on the things that he did not get to do.
In the afternoon I washed the dishes and sat outside for while.
When Kevin came home from golf he suggested we go for a short ride and then get a bite to eat, so we did. I'm tired so am going to bed early....tomorrow I have some cleaning to do and lots of phone calls to make. 
Happy monday to everyone!!!

Friday, August 26, 2016

A Doctor and Garden Today'v

Friday I and my friend took a ride to Milwaukee to my cardiologist. Strangely I wake up in the wee hours of the morning and it takes me awhile to go back to sleep, so I was really in a deep sleep when I heard text sound....before 7AM fault....I don't turn my phone off at night...usually it's not a problem. I guess my daughter had some free time before work and sent me a photo of my grandson.
I had about 8 more minutes to sleep so I was able to wake up slowly.
As usual I was 5 minutes late to pick up Carolee, my driver. Tis the season for orange cones (road construction) in Wi, but we arrived in plenty of time for my lab work. My dr is usually on time  so my appointment doesn't take much time. He said all seems good, my heart and kidneys that is....cancer??? seeing my oncologist next week.
After lunch we did a teeny bit of shopping...both of us are trying to move things out of our house...not into it. After St Vincent de Paul and Trader Joe's stops we headed home. She didn't buy a thing, I got a few things at Trader Joe's.
Doesn't this dessert look good?
Before we went home we also stopped at the gardens by the lake. It's been a few years since I've been there.

Tons of flowers and they are beautiful!!! 

It's beautiful and peaceful, I could walk around for hours and could have taken 100's of photos. 

Thursday, August 25, 2016

It Is What It Is

It is what it is..............that was my facebook post. I guess I just got sick of wearing a hat all of the time. Lately I've been forgetting it, but today I intentionally didn't wear it. I have a friend who is done with her chemo and radiation and still wears her wig, she loves it. She's even had the back of her hair trimmed. I don't think anyone is aware of her situation, I just happened to run into her one day and we talked. I hated my wig, it felt like it was coming off, I prefered to wear a hat.
My very short hair is really light and hard to see. People seem to think I look OK so I am going with it......actually even if they weren't, I'd go with it. I am comfortable. 

I have METS (breast  cancer that has metastasized), you don't hear much about that. The emphasis is on breast cancer survivors, you don't read about women who are just trying to live for as long as possible and aren't sure what is going to happen next. I feel good and have had a great summer! 
Much of the funds for breast cancer go for administrative costs....I know that is true with many charities, but's not right.
I read an interesting article about METS.... if you want to read it here it is   METS

Skechers shoes

So many people liked my new shoes (here)  that I decided to post a link. I don't think there are many left....they are an 'older' style. Maybe there's another style you like. I have received so many compliments.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Dumb Miscellaneous Stuff

This picture doesn't really go iwth this post, I don't feel outstanding today, but I guess that's OK.

It sure gets dark early lately *sad face*, fall is definitely in the air *sad face again*, and you know what that means.....winter is next *another sad face*.
Today I just hung out at home doing a little of  this and a little of that. First some food (that I stuffed into the freezer) fell on the floor so I had to clean up the floor. 
Then I washed the windows on our screen doors....a real pain because they have grille work on them and I couldn't get the windows off so I had to stuff a towel behind the metal and try to get it clean. GRRRRR.....all that on my hands and knees.....not the easiest position to get up from. 
I am still working on our extra bedroom.....putting vinyl letters on the wall isn't as easy  as you might think.....I have 3 lines and only 1 on the wall. I'll get it done this week. I worked on that this afternoon too. 
I burned the french fries I had in the oven for my supper...none for Kev, he was golfing.
I got my 250 steps every hour today on my fitbit...won the 'game' I play with my friend. I'll also get my goal of 5000 steps for the day....not a lot, but it's my goal.
Nothing exciting planned for tomorrow.....WHAT WILL I DO???

Monday, August 22, 2016

Pretty Cards

Yes, I get pretty cards in the getting cards, any cards.
This one has a special fold that can be used for tucking treasure in it. Isn't it adorable?

Here are my goodies.
I love, love, love the saying in this card!
Here's a simple, but elegant card.
It is really a light yellow, not cream colored.

Thank you all for thinking of me and taking the time to send me a card. One of my friends who was faithful in sending me cards has now been also diagnosed with cancer....I hope to be as faithful to her as she was with me. Pay it never know.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Happy Mail Week

Actually I shouldn't call it mail, I should say deliveries. I get some pretty cards, that post will be later.
Yesterday I was feeling kind of lazy and light headed so I took it easy. Thankfully the UPS and Fedex guys didn't.
I received a couple of orders of medical supplies, not my favorite things to find at my front door. When I found a shoebox at my door yesterday I was excited.

I love Birkenstocks and have 8-10 pairs of slip on sandals.....but with my foot problem I have a hard time walking in them so now I wear a shoe that covers my whole foot. Two of my 4 pairs of flats are well worn, cheapies from Walmart, and the other 2 pairs are more dressy. My friend wears Skechers with the memory foam and she says they are so comfortable. I have wide feet and the toes on my right foot are deformed so I have a hard time with shoes lately.  I like to  try shoes on before I buy and I wanted these particular shoes. I love, love the colors. I think they are last year's style .....but I found some online and took a chance and ordered them.
They are fabulous! The sole is so soft and the woven outer adjusts well to my wide feet. 
I would definitely consider buying another pair.

Next I want to talk about the great customer service I got from Amazon. I have a small, cheaper Kindle Fire and ever since last fall I have a VERY hard time connecting to Wifi when I am away from home. After talking to several customer (no service) reps a I finally got a woman who understood my problem. She told me my Kindle was still under warranty and thought it needed to be replaced. I received a return label via email and UPS'd it to Amazon. They kept in touch with email consistently and 4 or 5 days later I had a new Kindle. I was going to test it yesterday while I was at my therapy appointment but I forgot to bring it along. I just like to pass along good service. 
Hope your week is going well!!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

I'm not sure who recommended the book, but I had it reserved on Overdrive and it was available so I downloaded it. It's a short book, 150 pages. 

The author suffered a massive stroke that left him paralyzed from his neck down. At 43 and an active national magazine editor he was definitely out of his realm of activities. He's a father of 2 young children and wants to maintain a relationship with them. He is what they call 'locked in'....his brain works fine but his body is confined to a wheelchair or bed.
He's fortunate that he often has visitors and is able to spend time with his son and daughter. Even though he can only blink on eye and move his head he communicates with a letter board. This was not an easy process but he perseveres. He's determined to share his story, which miraculously he does. He describes his daily activities, his thoughts, and how  he 'lives' in his brain.....he often relives actions, food, travels, feelings.
It definitely made me realize how blessed I am!!!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

A Woman's Place

I really enjoyed this book by Lynn Austin and think I'll read more of her books.
The setting is in a small town in Michigan during WWII. Many of the men have been called to war and the factories are short handed. Four women, from different phases in their lives, start working in a shipyard for varying reasons and friendships are formed.

This is a Christian book, the way the gospel is brought in is not preachy, it's explaining a better way to live life.....simple ideas  in some ways.
Stay tuned....more book reviews on the way. I read about 2 books per week. I LOVE sitting outside and  reading. I HAVE to be outside when it is nice out,

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Lake Geneva Mailboat Tour

On the road again............A few days ago two of  my friends and I took a bus tour to Lake Geneva go on a mailboat tour. It's about a 2-1/2 hour drive and I almost think that for the price we paid we might have been better off driving down ourselves. I was picked up at 5:30 on an already hot day. After about 4 other pick up stops the bus was on the way to southern Wi. We arrived at the Walworth dock with just enough time to take a bathroom break and board the mailboat
I've heard about this and wanted to go on it for a few years, finally I found a day trip.
Let me tell you there is money in this area. Mansions were built by such famous people as  the founder of Montgomery Ward, Sears. Wrigley, Maytag, Schwinn, etc. Huge houses! Many people came over after the great Chicago fire.
from the internet:
Stone Manor is the largest estate ever built on Geneva Lake and probably the most talked about.   This colossal lakefront property is often mistaken as the Wrigley Mansion by tourists talking on the streets of Lake Geneva.  Otto Young, started building this historic home 1899, and originally called the mansion Younglands.  Otto came from an affluent family in Germany, however when he came to the USA in the mid 1800’s, he was virtually broke.  He started his American business life selling costume jewelry from a pushcart on the sidewalks of New York City.  Over the years, his business skills blossomed and he stockpiled an enormous fortune.
His story amazes me.

Geneva lake is a big lake, over 5000 acres.
the 3 stooges?

Like I said: it was a hot of our hottest. We were almost the last ones on the boat and had to climb up to the top. We had to look at the TV monitors to watch the mail jumpers deliver. We had a nice breeze to keep us cool, we weren't hot at all. A canopy covered the upper deck. I was brave and took off my hat because it has a floppy brim and I would have had to hold on to it and also the people behind me wouldn't be able to see. I didn't put it back on for the rest of the hair is 3/4" long and I HATE wearing a hat all the time.
A very few of the homes we saw, can you get the picture?

Kids were swimming all over, boats galore, I could spend my summers there.....but NOT in one of those mansions. They are obscene....selling for $16,000,000 and down. 
All around the lake is a 21 mile long walking path at the water's edge. People are encouraged to walk it, as long as you stay on the path you are OK, but don't walk on the lawn.
After the tour we stopped for lunch at a Victorian mansion. We were supposed to get a tour, but didn't. Lunch took a LONG time....a fruit cup, Chicken salad on a croissant, and chocolate mouse. Very good, but slow. 

 There were all kinds of hats to wear, I chose this one and didn't want to leave it there.....but I did. I think I am a 'hat person'.
We agreed that it wasn't the best tour we've taken, nor the worst. We enjoyed it and had a great day. Thanks for coming along.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

It's A Birthday Party

Our youngest granddaughter turned 8 the other day and her party was at an amusement park. She loves everything Paris. 

It was a beautiful day! !!!


Of course the kids spent time on the rides. My daughter's kids lined themselves up in order of age.

Many of our grands were there.

Elvis' favorite roller coaster, even Kevin rode it.
Two of my handsome and me.
We really had a good day!
I don't want summer to end.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Thoughts On Thursday

Do you know what bothers me?

Why do I have such a problem with my balance? Is this forever? Is the nerve damage to my foot permanent? I'd like to be able to walk....I tripped and fell into Lake Superior and I tripped Tuesday  while watering my tomatoes and doused myself with water. What if I fall down the steps?

Every time I cough I wonder if I am getting worse. Sometimes I get a 'funny' feeling in my left chest area, what does that mean?

Will I be able to have tomatoes and flowers next year?

What will the winter be like?

What if I can't get my lymphatic system working?

Are the chemo pills helping? I guess my next blood test will tell.

I think about cancer every day.....I am aware of it.....I don't fret about's just there.....a fact of life I am not happy about.

Thanks for modern medicine and friends who don't leave me behind.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

The Last of My Bayfield Trip

I've dragged this trip out, don't you think???
Friday we had a tour of Bayfield....beautiful homes...big homes.....lots of flower gardens....not many in this area. Famous people have owned homes here or have come for vacations....of course I can't remember names now.

Rows of bee balm. While we were there I overheard a mother and her daughter discussing an upcoming wedding in that area. We watched the hummingbirds when we were there.

One of the orchards we stopped at.

My travel companions picked some blueberries. They were delicious!!!
A light from one of the a museum.
 Beautiful flowers are all over.
 The first jail.
 A few houses had little guest houses next to them, I didn't get any photos though. They had been barns from when everyone had a cow or two. 
 The Rittenhouse bed & breakfast is BEAUTIFUL!!!!
We had a fabulous lunch and toured the house and garden. A few of the rooms were of an 'ordinary' size with very nice bedrooms....the newer, remodeled rooms were very elaborate with sitting rooms, fireplaces, hot tubs, and more.....much too fancy just to spend a night in.

 the dining area
 One of the rare spirit house in the Indian cemetery. 
Many Ojibwe graves were covered by traditional spirit houses where food and offerings were placed for the deceased until they had passed on to the spirit world.  

Our last night we visited the 

Big Top Chautauqua tent show.

It reminded me of a circus.....all tents....selling food & drinks, souvenirs, etc. 
the show was really good and I enjoyed it.

 On of the ways to upcycle old skis....there were fences and walls too. 
 We stopped at this orchard on the way home. 
 This area is famous for its brownstone.
 In the museum before I 'swam' in Lake Superior. 
My 'after swim' outfit. 

 I always take advantage of these goofy photo ops. 
 On the way home we stopped in Mercer for a bathroom break. Guess what? There was one bathroom for both sexes. This was a small visitor center.
Loon day was coming up..............craft, music, food. We asked if we could stay for the week...but it was not to be, the tour guide had a different itinerary.