Stem Cell Transplant 12 year -new birthday!!

It was a rainy day Feb 28, 2006, when I was admitted to Sutter Memorial Hospital Bone Marrow Transplant unit. It was a small unit of only 6 rooms.  Each patient is in isolation because of having little to no immune system working. Every day, a cleaner came in and did the entire room top to bottom. The nurses were the kindest and very experienced in their field. It takes a special person to be that nurse.

I can’t exactly remember but I think I was given the Melphalan that day, and then the stem cells are given either the next day or the day after.  It’s the Melphalan that does you in as it kills everything along with the hope it’s killing the cancer cells.  Then it’s the stem cells that actually rebuild your immune system and white blood cells. But first, you go thru white blood count dropping to close to zero, plasma transfusions as your red blood count is so low, horrible diarrhea, and on and on.

12 years ago today. I’m one of the lucky ones as my SCT did work and I had 4 years of remission.

But it was singularly the worst experience of my life. Yet, I’m grateful for the medicine, my doctors and transplant specialist, nurses and of course my family. They got me through.

So Happy New birthday to me.

Rainy Monday

I went for my walk, as usual, but in the rain. It wasn’t too bad as I do have rain gear I wear. ( Frogg Toggs).  If you’re equipped it’s okay. My North Face hiking shoes are gore-tex so my feet stay dry. If the wind is blowing then it’s harder but it wasn’t too bad this morning.  We are 90 days away from hitting the 5-year mark of the JKW project.

The rest of the week still looks rainy and cold with more snow forecast for the end of the week. WTF, this is not normal. We always have some cold weather but this just seems like its going on and on. Oh well, I guess just enjoy it as much as you can.

Today is a relaxed puttering day. I’ve made some turkey chili for tonight and it’s simmering away. I hardboiled some eggs for snacks or lunches. Then yesterday I made hummus in my old Waring Blender. I got this blender back in the 80’s. So I thought gee, I wonder if this would make the hummus as creamy as the pictures from the Vitamix blender. And I ‘m happy to say it did.  I’m still going to check out the Vitamix as I think making nut butter would be cool. Any recommendations a model?? Costco has a few models so I’ll look there first.

Then I’m doing 1x laundry and a few Monday chores around the house.

I have gotten back some Labs and they look good. My CBC panel looked great and the SPEP test came back normal but I had to e-message the doctor as I pretty sure the light chains got lost somewhere. Maybe today.

Simple Sunday

Yikes, the cold is just not going away. It was 29 degrees this morning and tomorrow looks more snow.

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We’ve had our wood stove going 24/7. At least we have the wood from the trees we had taken down plus B bought the wood splitter which really has been an excellent non-frugal purchase.

Flylady has 2 zones this week as March 1 is Thursday. So we’re starting in the Living room zone and then move on to the entry ways. Yesterday, I was listening to a vlogger and she mentioned going into a room and determining what you use it for and then getting rid of whatever doesn’t support that. So, I looked around and saw the vintage suitcase I have by the couch and realized it didn’t really fit there but would be a nice side table next to my bed. On my husband’s side, there isn’t a bedside table so I put it there. He doesn’t have a pharmacy like I do in my nightstand.  I take acyclovir at night and then I take levothyroxine sometime in the wee hours of the night when I get up to use the bathroom.  Plus, before I had to take dex and Revlimid and who knows what else, so I kept them in the Heywood bedside table.

So, I’m going to scrutinize the room and other rooms to see what can be or needs to be moved. There’s not a lot to declutter but with fresh perspectives comes new thoughts on what is needed or not.

Today is a gym day and then I may go into Target. We need cat food and I wanted to look for a candle. Candles for me are non-negotiable.  I use beeswax tapers every evening at dinner. I get those from Amazon( the best price I’ve found for 4 pairs is $40) from Blue corn bees wax.

But I like one or two fragrant candles around. I don’t keep more than that and then either I recycle the glass or reuse it.

But, look at what I received from my sweetheart….

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they are so beautiful

I’d completely recommend FARMGIRL FLOWERS!!!!

 

 

Friday Stuff

We had SNOW!!

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Amazing at this elevation but it does happen from time to time. It’s like a winter wonderland!! And Cold!!! While I really dislike cold this makes it pretty. Of course, it won’t last but our cold temperatures are supposed to stick around for the next 10 days. Where’s our California weather??

Well, anyway, other stuff. I’m resigning my position as VP of the library friends. The board is elected in March, and I’m just not feeling it. I think that the Friends have been incredibly supportive of Applegate, still, really, more than it deserves still, it is a library. There is still no news whether it will close this year so who knows. Anyway, I think I’ll just back away. I’m still going to our Koffee Klatches, but that’s just Friends meeting for lunch.

The other news is my SPEP test came back, normal electrophoresis pattern!! YaY!! But I haven’t seen my light chains, so I e -messaged my doctor because they should have been in at least by yesterday.  So hoping they are still in the normal range too.

Today,  with the snow is still out there, I may not go into town. B is going to the gym so I can have him get cat food at Target.

Dinner is a pizza. I have a coupon for a free pizza so we’ll use that.

why​ minimalize

We all have different thresholds of clutter and for things that are around us. When I look around my small house, I can see where a die-hard minimalist may say, ‘Gee, you have a lot of Easton Press books, or that I still have my Fiesta Ware.’ Even though I have gotten rid of probably 75 % of what we did have ( grand piano and 2 couches and a futon) plus more, there is still a comfortable amount of stuff that I like.

I love my Needles and Pine Tepco dishes that are in the Heywood Wakefield. Even though I use White dishes daily, I do use the Tepco and I use the Fiesta Ware. But I have them where I can appreciate them visually and they fit on the shelves they are on.

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That’s a big minimalist thing and I do use that concept of how much ‘real estate’ or space do I have for those items. If they were boxed away, I would get rid of them. But they are out on my shelves and fit the space. If you need to start your minimalist journey, I’d recommend the container concept. There’s only so much room on a shelf or in a drawer for items. So that is your parameter. You can only put what fits and that doesn’t mean cramming things in sideways.

So why bother decluttering and minimizing your stuff. From my own personal experience, my house stays cleaner as there is less stuff to dust and overall less stuff to deal. My stress levels are quite low( mostly) when things are tidy and uncluttered. I read a great article on some blog about when we’re stressed we want to declutter and I can say that is what I did.  I found the more I released the less stressed I was. My home felt better to be in. As an introvert, I spend a lot of my time home especially since I no longer work at the library. So

  • cleaner house
  • less stuff to deal with
  • lower stress levels
  • more time for other things like reading, cooking, walking etc

 

There’s less noise in my head when I have more white space around me both literally and figuratively. I think there’s even more, I can declutter down the road but for now, it is a nice balance.

 

 

Simple Sunday

We are in for some very cold weather and snow is even predicted for Thursday.

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This is a pretty picture of Tahoe though with snow.

Ugh!! I do not like cold weather. It was 41 degrees this morning walking but with a jacket( I have a North Face polar fleece I bought like 8 years ago), it was comfortable. But when it gets to 29 degrees like it is predicted, then that is cold.

So today is a gym day and then some light chores. The zone is the bedroom this week and closet, so I’ll work on the pantry/closet again. It’s just always a work in progress. Our bedroom only has a bed and Heywood dresser, so it’s pretty easy to just tidy and dust and wash the windows.

I downloaded a fun ebook by the author of ‘Decluttering at the speed of Life’

This one was her first one ” How to manage your home without losing your mind’

She is really hysterical to read and I gleaned a few good ideas.

Tomorrow I get my 6-week labs so we shall see. It’s sorta like Russian Roulette. Will they still be normal or will it have changed? Who knows , right??

Tonight I’m making another Skillet recipe from Cook’s Illustrated ‘The Best Skillet Recipes’. I’m making skillet lasagna.

 

‘Zen Camera’ a book review

‘Zen Camera’ is a unique book that captures an artistic approach to photography. The photos are quite stunning and I enjoyed many of the Zen thoughts about how to take pictures and even deeper, the why.

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The book goes into 6 lessons to do so as to improve one’s photography. The lessons are thought provoking and innovative.

The author David Ulrich is a talented photographer as well as a Buddhist teacher.

If you are into photography or just want to deepen your skills it is an excellent book. I would highly recommend it.

 

This book was given to me from bloggingforbooks in exchange for my honest review.