Wednesday, August 31, 2016

A Quick Check-In

I'm still taking a blogging break, but I did want to pop in and give you all an update.

On the 19th, I had my monthly blood draw, and my cancer markers came back high ... Dr. Powell was concerned about the increase and ordered a CT scan last Friday. Yesterday DD, DH and I met with him to discuss the results. As we suspected, the cancer is back ... the good news is that it's early and there isn't a lot of cancer or fluid built up.

Dr. Powell recommended that I participate in a clinical trial designed for women like me whose cancer came back within 6 months of finishing the first round of chemo. The options in the study include oral meds that target the cancer cells or standard chemo. The treatment I will receive will be chosen randomly. I'll be having several tests over the next week to ensure that I'm healthy enough to participate and establish baseline levels for future labwork. I will be closely monitored and can withdraw if it becomes obvious that the treatment I'm receiving isn't helping. Not to worry, though, as there are still lots of other treatments available.

We're hoping that we'll still be able to go to Hilton Head as planned next month, but it's already looking like we'll be leaving later than originally planned. Obviously our priority is to get this cancer under control.

I would really appreciate your prayers that the treatment will be effective and that I'll tolerate the treatment with minimal side effects.

Sunday afternoon I headed back to my sewing room. If you all remember, I've been debating what to make next. I had so many ideas that I was suffering from "analysis paralysis" ... plus many of my choices would require some stash enhancement (aka a trip to Homestead Hearth). As I was checking Facebook Sunday morning, I saw a granny square quilt that I fell in love with. It was an "aha" moment ... #1 it is a perfect scrappy quilt, so I could use my stash - #2 I have a 2" (finished) square die so cutting my scraps into usable pieces would be easy peasy - #3 it will be perfect for quick and easy chain piecing which will be perfect considering I may not have large blocks of time to spend in the sewing room (what with getting ready to move). I pieced together 3 blocks Sunday afternoon. Here are two of those blocks.

I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that brings you joy ... have a great day!

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Another Blogging Break

If you remember, DH and I stayed with DD and her family when I was first diagnosed. It was a little crowded and no one had any real privacy, but we loved being with them and miss being actively involved with them on a daily basis. We've dreamt about finding a large house with a separate in-law suite or cottage (with a little acreage and of course a pool! if we're going to dream, why not dream big - ha!) ... only to realize that we'd need to win the lottery first to be able to afford it. We have managed to find an alternative ... we're going to buy the house right behind DD's house. ;-)


We will be closing at the end of October, which seems like a long time from now, but I think most of you will agree that the time will pass by entirely too quickly. So DH and I will need to get right to work on packing and getting this house ready to sell, as well as planning the improvements and upgrades we'll be making to the new ... unfortunately that won't leave much time for blogging (especially since we are still planning to be in Hilton Head for two weeks next month). Suffice it to say, we're going to be busy as bees. ;-) Once we get moved and settled in, I plan to be back with a full report.


So until then, I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that brings you joy ... have a great day!



Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Trip Report - aka the Best Week of My Life

I have to admit that I was a little concerned whether I'd be able to tolerate the drive (12-1/2 hours) and whether I'd be able to enjoy my time away and whether I'd be able to keep up with everyone else and not be a burden.  Thankfully my concerns were for naught ... I really didn't have much pain and was able to do whatever I wanted.  The only activity I wasn't able to participate in was the snorkeling ... and only because I couldn't wear a mask over my glasses and I'm as blind as a bat without them.  ;-)

The beach in the panhandle is absolutely the most beautiful beach I've ever seen.  Unfortunately, it's not the flat, solid beach conducive to walking (like the beach at Hilton Head).  Even so, it was the beach, and we loved every minute of our time. 

We were blessed with beautiful weather the first 7 days ... sunny and warm in spite of rain in the forecasts.  Alas, the rain finally materialized the final 3 days ... thankfully there was a break in the rain each day so we could get back out to the beach. 

This was our view crossing over to Destin - our first view of water.  I was practically giddy with excitement, and this was just the bay.  ;-)

 Our view at lunch that first day in Destin.

 The beach at Destin.

We got to the condo in Navarre Beach an hour before we could check in ... so we spent that hour out on the beach.

Just minutes after we checked in, we saw this fly-by.  This was taken from the balcony of our condo.

 Another pic taken from our balcony.  The view was spectacular!

T#2 and I went for an early-morning walk along the beach and saw a sea turtle nest.  Speaking of sea turtles, DD, DSIL and I were out in the water later that morning and saw a sea turtle swim by - no more than 15-20 yards from us.  It was spectacular!

The sun was too far north to get photos of a sunrise or sunset on the Gulf, so this was the best I could do.

As I mentioned, I couldn't snorkel, but that didn't mean that I didn't see anything while on the boat waiting.  That's a jelly fish.  Yes, some of our snorkelers were stung, but the stings were minor and alleviated with a spray of vinegar.

 T#4's artwork our final day on the beach.

 <3 <3 <3

 T#4's artwork at dinner our final night.

DH and I didn't head straight home Saturday morning.  We decided to go check out Ft. Pickens and were treated to a show by the Blue Angels (stationed over at Pensacola Naval Air Station, just across Escambia Bay).  I got a video which you can view here: 

The shells I found on my walks along the beach.

Don't forget that you can click on the pictures to see them even better.  ;-)

I am not exaggerating when I say that this was the best week of my life.  The memories we made are priceless, and I will cherish them the rest of my life.

I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that brings you joy ... have a great day!