Well, not good on the labs.

Well, I figured another increase. Up to 239.9mg/L from 176. So another almost 70 point increase. Lamba went down to 10.2mg/L so of course, that means the ratio went up. Up to 23.4 mg/L.

The bigger news is now there is finally a monoclonal protein showing:( it’s at .3  I haven’t had a M protein in over 4 years so that is a bit unsettling.  Well, as I’ve said, the blood tells the story. Not much I can do about it except plan on the timing of Chemotherapy. I’m guessing when I see him at the end of August he will still say, wait.  I’m predicting by November/December will be a good time to start.  If you figure about a 70 point increase each 8 weeks, that puts it at 4months apprx.

This will be my 4th relapse( well technically my 3rd, since I counting when I became refractory to Revlimid and started Pomalyst.) so I guess I know the drill.

 

Projects done!

The closet looks bright and clean. We did move our space heaters to the barn and I have one box of “I don’t know what to do with” stuff. One item is my old Waring blender that I bought new in 1985. It still works fine but most I use my Vitamix. So I’m undecided and will wait on deciding to give away or not.  We still need to hang my mirror back up and then I can take a photo if I remember.

B finished repotting the bamboo in the new barrels. This is actually a pretty big job as the roots needed to be cut with a Sawzall.  That’s how thick they were.  We are going to get a 3rd barrel as it will fill the space out nicely.

We also took everything out of the chest freezer and defrosted it. I got a good count on what’s in there so that was helpful plus it’s more organized.

The weather is quite a bit cooler and we actually sat outside last night.  Today is also really nice with a high of only 85.

Yesterday I bagged up the Central Milling flour into 3 mylar bags. I could have used the food saver bags but  I wanted to test out how the flour would be. The other bag I will use the food saver bags and then compare the two.

Tuesday we did our Costco shop. It was just under $500. Some of that was alcohol. The Costco beer which is a variety of ales and other types is a great deal at $20. and this was the first time we’ve seen it in almost a year. So we bought 2. That should last a while. I don’t drink beer but B does( although not too much right now with his issues) and my son has the occasional beer. Then we bought champagne for our anniversary. Since we’re not going anywhere, we figured we’ll do some kind of celebration dinner with champagne. This shop wasn’t really a prepper shop but more stuff for the month, salad stuff, avocados, spinach, cheese, bread.  The only things I still need are milk, bananas, vegetable shortening, and burger rolls. I’ll probably do that later in the week.  I’m hoping this shopping will get us thru most of the month.  Oh, I did get organic pasta that was on sale. So that’s for the prepper pantry.  Later this month we’ll hit Winco and get 2 more of the buckets if they have them and the gamma lids. I’m tempted to go sooner than later as I’m guessing they will get sold out.

I’m still waiting on my labs, so maybe by tomorrow.

Tomorrow is my son’s 26th birthday. Such a wonderful young man. Funny, talented, smart, and has a full-time job with California State Sierra Nevada Conservancy.  He was a fun kid and outgoing.  He was homeschooled all the way thru high school. He then went to Community college, got 2 degrees, and then graduated from CSU Sacramento. No student debt and he did most of it on his own. We are so proud of him. So, I need to find out what kind of dinner he wants and dessert. Our family ritual is the birthday boy/girl gets to pick their favorite dinner and dessert.

I’m reading the new Todd Borg” Tahoe Hit”. It just came out if you’re interested. He’s one of my favorite authors and is local to Lake Tahoe.

685789B5-5871-4B18-ADA0-0533A910EDF3.jpegHere’s my new BLACK LIVES MATTER yard sign for the driveway.

 

 

Simple Sunday

For some reason, I got a bee in my bonnet. so to speak, to clean out and paint our ONE closet. It is a good size, 4×6. I always wanted to make this a half bath with a small shower but that would mean digging up our septic and putting a bigger one in. That expensive just isn’t on the table anymore( unless we win the lottery, and since I don’t play, that’s not happening).

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So we need to get a roller to do most of it. The Hardware store doesn’t open till 9am( here in town, not Home Depot). I have 1/2 a gallon of white and that may or may not be enough. We’ll start with the ceiling and then the clothes side. I’ll consider going into Home depot for more Behr paint or I’ll go tomorrow and finish the pantry side.  Getting the clothes back in would take priority as they are on the bed and the couch right now.

If nothing else it will get the dust bunnies out and freshen up the space which hasn’t been done, like ever.

Also here are the mylar bags filled.

 

These are really nice bags if you’re interested. The came from TheEpicenter in Oregon. They have a zipped part as well as the normal heat part. I read it can be tricky to do the heat but I had no problem. The oxygen tabs in them should pull the oxygen out in 48 hours. Some are already showing that but others seem the same. No matter they are sealed.  I already ordered another 20 bags since a few months ago you couldn’t even get these.

Tonight I ‘m making tofu burgers with macaroni salad.  I need to go to the store and pick up some burger rolls later.

Tomorrow are my labs. It’s been 8 weeks so we’ll see what they show. As I said before Myeloma just doesn’t disappear  so with my numbers increasing it’s a matter of time before I start Velcade and Dex.

Being off Facebook has been overall easy. Once in while I miss reading what people are up to but not a whole lot.

 

Off to paint!!!

August 1, Lammas

For some reason, I have always loved the Celtic calendar. which is also called a cross-quarter. I used to believe it was all ‘past life’ influence but now that stuff doesn’t ring true. It’s probably more kinship with the Welsh( which I have in family lineage) and Irish( perhaps on my father’s side). Anyway, it doesn’t matter, why, just that I like the cross quarters and today is Lammas. The Celtic celebration of late summer.Photo Of Sunflower

I can always feel the sift of air and light at Lammas. Perhaps just that I walk early every day and notice those things.

This would be a day to bake bread from the harvest. I also saw to make beeswax candles. I used to make my own candles but have long given that up and now just buy my beeswax candles. I do burn them nightly from fall to spring but not during the summer. The glow they give is like no other and is one of my favorite rituals.

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I just made some bread so I won’t do another loaf but I do have some buttermilk to use so I am planning on making buttermilk biscuits. Good enough.

On a sad note, our neighbor has poisoned the skunks and we have one in our yard dying a painful death. It has really upset me. I don’t want skunks under our porch either but for the most part, they are harmless and they do eat things at night.  Right now it has sprayed a last spray and is in the bushes by our water pond. I guess once we can see where it is we will pick it up(with a shovel) and go bury it. It makes me mad that he did this.

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Some lavender from our plants that I harvested. I use lavender all winter to freshen up clothes and sprinkle on rugs and then vacuum up.

 

Five on Friday

  • Well, I ordered the upright freezer.

That’s the good news. The bad news is delivery is 3 months away. Who knows if it even will be delivered or I will get an out of stock notice. I think I must have gotten one of the last ones.  This Lowes upright was $719. From there they went way up at $1500 and higher.  So we’ll see. But I have a plan for this upright and feel it is a wise investment. Regardless of the pandemic, it’ll be nice to have a 6 months’ worth of freezer stuff and be done with it.

  • Our budget is done for August and all bills accounted for.  I put in for my LLS reimbursement. They have a new format on their website and it is very easy to use. If I didn’t get the reimbursement for insurance I don’t think our monthly income from SS would cover it. So I am very grateful for all who donate to the LLS.
  • We are planning a trip to Costco next week( 1st week of August). I don’t need to go to the store before then so that’s nice. I’m not planning on prepper stuff just normal we need like cheese, bread, olive oil, and some other random things.
  • Tonight is pizza night. Tomorrow I plan on BBQing a pork roast for the carnivores and will probably do a Field Day roast sausage for the vegetarian.
  • I canceled the extra Amazon channels of Brit Box, and Acorn for now as we have watched all the current shows we like. Maybe when some new seasons come out I’ll re-up. But that saves almost $15.00 a month. Then I saw somehow we were paying for PBS masterpiece too so I canceled that. We haven’t watched any of those channels for quite a while so I guess we were throwing that money away. Right now, we mostly watch Amazon Prime stuff and are currently rewatching Death in Paradise which is a good detective show.
  • I need a new book so I  may peruse Amazon for an ebook today.
  • I’ve decided to take a Facebook break. So I’m deactivating my account for a month. I don’t spend a lot of time on Facebook but I just feel it’s time to break away for a while. It’ll be interesting to see how I feel when it’s over.  Maybe my creativity will get sparked again.??
  • okay, I can count and this is more than 5!!!!

 

Hot Weather continues

Today we are 100 degrees. It is really getting old that it is just day after day of heat. The mornings start off nice and then by noon it’s hot.

It looks like this will continue for at least the next week. I mean it is July/August in California but still…

The NP, in the video conference, did tell B to lower the Jakofi to one a day till we see how the hydration is going. I’m pretty sure she talked with Dr. Abedi and voiced my disapproval/concern about the creatine being linked to when he started the 2nd Jakofi. So I guess we’ll see.

I haven’t been too inspired to cook( too hot) but I did make a nice brown rice salad last night for dinner. It was brown rice, carrots, green onions, a few olives, a nice zucchini from the garden, tomatoes from the garden and some parmesan cheese. It was good.  I also made kinda a green dressing with parsley, basil, and a little thyme. I put it in the Vita-mix with lemon and olive oil. I had tried it in the food processor before and it didn’t seem to pulverize it. I’m wondering if the food processor just doesn’t do that. If that’s what you have happened let me know.  So I think my son is planning on cooking some fish tonight( mahi-mahi).  Not sure about the vegetarian option but the rice salad and maybe a beyond burger. No one seems especially hungry at dinner time so maybe we should do a few YOYO nights.

I ordered a few used cookbooks to purview.  One is actually one I gave away years ago. A vegetarian cookbook from Ananda.  I found it on amazon used so with our pet bookstore closed I decided to get it. I had ordered a book on eBay about southern cooking but then it was not in stock even though I paid for it so now it’s hanging out there to be refunded. Oh well, not good communication on the seller’s part.

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I offered up some sourdough starter on our Nextdoor neighbor site. I have way too much starter. So I had one person interested so I gave them 2 jars. I still have a quart in the fridge.

 

The week ahead…

First looking back over the last few days.

Still really hot here making it hard to go outside and do much except for early in the morning.

We picked up some oak barrels at Home Depot to replant some bamboo in. I love putting bamboo in barrels as it looks lovely.

Years ago, probably 20, I went to a Waldorf parents house who had golden bamboo. I dug up as much as I could( believe me, back-breaking). But that is what we have as a privacy screen all around the driveway area. But we put some in barrels as it contains it and makes a pretty visual effect. We have these two barrels outside our bedroom window. But the old barrels had deteriorated and were no longer holding water so they will be replaced. I’m guessing these were about the same age, 20 years.

Then Barclay’s labs came back with very high creatine( not good) because of the new drug Jakofi. We both kinda flipped out since the NP kept saying hydrate which he was doing obsessively. He will need to go in for an IV hydration if his numbers remain high. I’m really bugged by this as it all started with the Jakofi. It’s a great drug for GVHD but he’s still on other stuff and it’s hard on the kidneys. So I asked why not drop the Jakofi to 2 a day then 1 a day and so forth. No answer on that yet. So we were definitely bummed out for a few days. We’ll see how the labs are this week.

I had worked on learning how to butcher a whole chicken. I saw a youtube by ProCooks, who I like, and thought well, I could do that. It’s fairly simple just kinda involved so not sure I think it’s worth doing regularly.  Then I made Pioneer woman fried chicken and it was A LOT of Work. Not doing that again. Plus the kitchen ended up looking like a vat of oil exploded. It was tasty but I wouldn’t say great. I think I’ll stick to Southern-fried tofu.

Today is my Flylady morning in the LR zone. Definitely an EZ zone for me with just some deeper dusting and window cleaning.  Generally, it takes 10 minutes tops.

I’m going to get out the bread maker and make some WholeWheat sourdough. I just use the bread maker to make and rise the dough and then I bake in the oven.

Other than that an open week.

I’m making lists of my barn prepper pantry items so I can determine how many weeks/months of stuff we have.  I want to have a balance of pantry security and not going overboard with the ‘survivalist’ mode. I did order some dried Whole milk to put aside in case of either a power outage or unavailable at stores. If anything, I can use it in baking.

I found a book at our little free library, “Radio Free Vermont

. Pretty funny book and is contemporary as Trump is president. If your library has it, I’d recommend it for a fun read.

Here’s an interesting bit of news from our area. We used to live in Foresthill. From 1975 when we came to California till 1995 when we moved here( about 20 miles difference) with Auburn being in the middle and everyone’s main hub. ( mostly). So we lived near a road called Yankee Jims. Very remote and goes down a very windy, steep and treacherous dirt road( some of the way) to the North Fork of the American River. There’s a bridge there that, if I remember correctly, was one lane. Anyway, there’s parking on the side of the road for maybe 10-15 cars MAX!  Last weekend there were 313 cars down there, blocking the road both ways. So now the whole area is shut down and no cars can go in. WHY PEople!! So STupid!

Oh and another STUPID controversial thing. I was looking on Youtube for prepper pantry ideas so I clicked on this one called Alaska Granny. I thought it looked interesting. Younger than me, so not sure where the “granny “comes from. Anywho, this was right after the debacle with GOYA foods. BOYCOTT GOYA!! BUT, this lady does a whole vlog on GO OUT AND BUY AS MUCH GOYA FOODS AS YOU CAN TO SHOW SUPPORT FOR TRUMP AND THE OWNER OF GOYA.

Really??? oh well, takes all kinds. I guess she thinks Trump is cool or some deluded thing. Really, he’s sending federal troops into cities for political shit.  Really, people, he’s a narcissistic nutcase.  History will show this to be one of the worst periods of American politics.

OK, I’ll get off my soapbox now.

 

 

Putting things up

I made a quick batch of pickled jalapenos this morning.

 

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We use these all winter. They are not canned but just refrigerator jalapenos. It says they are good for 2 months in the fridge but we are just finishing ajar from last fall so I’m guessing they last a lot longer than what the recipe says because it’s just vinegar and water and some sugar.

Also, at Winco we SCORED gamma lids and some buckets. These are seriously expensive on Amazon. They’re probably not quite as good as the Amazon ones but they’ll do the job of sealing the buckets. AF23071C-19BD-4C6C-9865-F0B4CA78E2BE

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I have the black beans and points to put in the 5 gallon buckets but I’m waiting on the mylar bags to separate the beans. I could vacuum seal them so I might do that but the mylar I guess are  better for longer term storage.  The mylar bags are not coming in till the first week of August so I’ll have to see what I want to do.

I rearranged the prepper pantry in the barn and moved all the non food( well almost) to other shelves that used to hold all my magazines. It looks good and based on what’s there I’d say I have almost a year for some things and 6 months for others( TP).

I was watching a few youtubers who are preppers and the recommendation was a cooler dark place. We do not have a closet to use in the house as there is only one real designated closet albeit that it is large. So I got to thinking maybe we should build a closed in cabinet in the barn. I’m not sure since the barn does not get any direct sunlight in there and is generally on the cooler side. I don’t know, I’ll have to think on that too.

I tell you though, some of these preppers are really out there with survivalist stuff. I sorta ignore all that and just try and glean some ideas about storage.

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Some of my orchids are reblooming which I’ve never had happen. It must be they like where I put them which was actually an accident. I had put them on B’s to get them out of the way and sure enough the morning light and then the coolness from the windows at night must be the right condition. Excited to see if it happens again.

the week ahead…

Another quiet week with no appts. I don’t get my labs till the first week of August. I’m expecting the worst with another steep rise but am still hoping to delay treatment till fall or even this winter. Not to be pessimistic but realistic since Myeloma just doesn’t go away and blood work doesn’t magically get better:(

Monday is chore day and doing little things around the house. I cleaned the tub with Comet and I plan on washing the towels which I try to do on Mondays. The Flylady zone is the bedroom. I’d say if you’re new to Flylady, clean everything out of your bedroom except your bed and maybe a dresser. No TV’s, no extra chairs( unless it’s a very large room), and basically remove all distractions.  If you haven’t uncluttered, now is the time to do so. As I’ve said many times, once things are simplified and cleared out cleaning is a snap, and keeping it that way is quite easy. More stuff means more cleaning and it is visually distracting. I do have a Heywood Wakefield bedside table I need for my meds that I take in the evening and my water.  If I could figure out a way to eliminate that I would.  Maybe another wood crate attached to the wall like the one on B’s side of the bed. It’s small but has enough room.

Mondays are also the day we don’t walk but oddly it feels like the day just doesn’t feel quite complete. But since I’m quite OC about it, it’s probably good I break up the routine.

I’ve been researching long term prepper pantry storage and it seems Mylar bags are the way to go. But since I’m using the vacuum sealer right now, I don’t think I’ll add mylar to the mix. Maybe down the road.  But I’m not looking to try and prep for 5 years and those people that do are kinda extreme. So what I am going to do is get a few more 5-gallon buckets and put some of the vacuumed sealed bags in them so light doesn’t affect them. I’ll try and do a bucket for rice, then one for beans, and then one for flour or baking things. Also, I’d get the gamma lids since they screw down.

I do think that in the fall things are going to get worse and so it is good to be ahead of that. I still like the idea of the upright freezer for certain things but we need to kinda regroup from the tree expense.

Meal plan for the week is : ( in no particular order of using)

  • Tacos, bean and some taco beef for the carnivores plus all the trimmings
  • Cobb salad with hardboiled eggs, sliced cheese, olives, maybe some kind of bean like kidney beans, veggie bacon, cherry tomatoes from the garden and we also have cucumbers coming in as well.
  • homemade macaroni and cheese with broccoli on the side
  •  chicken piccata/tofu with corn I froze( from the fruit stand) and maybe potatoes.
  • homemade pizza
  • mystery meal???

Well, that’s a wrap for now.

 

 

 

 

Simple Sunday and a blogger apology!

First off, I owe an apology to Hawaii planner blogger.  She is an honest blogger who I respect. I was unfair in my comment concerning her kitchen renovation.

I was rude and unnecessarily judgemental about frugalness while being well off.  That was an unfair assessment on my part.   Everyone should try to be careful with their money no matter what their circumstances.  We can all learn from one another and should be open-minded about other people’s circumstances.

 

 

Overall, we had a nice week.

Quite hot and it will continue to be so for a while. At least it cools off at night so the coolers are turned off by 8pm. I’m expecting our PGE bill to be high.

I went to Safeway as I mentioned and it wasn’t too busy at all. Some people were still not wearing masks but most were.  I’ll probably not go back to Safeway but if I need something over to Bel Air as they are requiring face covers.  I didn’t really get any prepper stuff just regular groceries.  I don’t need anything this week but 1/2 for coffee which we go thru a lot of with 4 of us drinking coffee with cream.

We’ve been watching some fun old movies like Caddyshack.  Another favorite this time of year is What about Bob!!!