Simple Sunday

I went down to Walmart for a grocery pickup. It went smooth and fast. They really have it dialed in and it was loaded quickly and efficiently. Part of the reason I did Walmart is you just can’t beat their prices. I checked out Campbell’s tomato soup at the store as I didn’t have any. It was $1.99. At Walmart it was .98 . So go figure.

I came home and put together a batch of cranberry orange scones. Scones are fairly easy but sometimes they don’t hold together so we’ll see. The recipe is NYT orange cranberry scones.

This week FL is in the living room zone so I plan on doing a few things this morning. I wasn’t feeling totally great so I’ll leave most of it for tomorrow.

Last night I made what I’m calling Tucson mix. Back when we were at U of A, being vegetarians, there weren’t a lot of options to eating out but there was a small health food shop that sold a bowl of brown rice topped with a medley of zucchini, onions, tomatoes, mushrooms, and ?? Actually both of us can’t quite remember but I think that was it. They sold a bowl for .99 . So we ate there often. Yesterday I started it in the Staub and simmered most of the day. It turned out delicious. For my son( a meat eater) I sauteed some jalapeno cheddar sausage from costco and we also had some sauteed shrimp if anyone wanted to add that. I’m definitely adding this to the rotation in monthly meal planning. Next time maybe adding a yellow squash. I’m pretty sure it didn’t have eggplant because Barclay doesn’t like eggplant. Anyway it was a good first attempt.

Here’s the pizza from Friday night. Very nice!!

This week’s menu will include breakfast for dinner, Mac and cheese and salad, a new tofu recipe I saw in the NYT for BBQ tofu.

I just finished tidying the living room and dusted. I might do the windows or leave that for tomorrow. I still need to vacuum.

Rain is predicted all week with even the possibility of snow tomorrow. Our walk this morning was cold @ 36 degrees but NO one else showed up so it was nice. Everything was quiet and frosty! I can already tell I’m getting slight tingling( neuropathy) in my foot. Hopefully it will just an annoyance and NOT a problem. Velcade does cause neuropathy so I guess I’ll bring that up at my doctor appt.

Frugal Friday

I made all our bread and snacks this week. The sourdough seed bread was really good.

The chocolate sheet cake went pretty fast too. I used my new hand mixer and the frosting got nice and fluffy. This morning I’ve got a pan of brownies started and am thinking about making some scones as well.

We were going to order out pizza but then we all decided to just stick with homemade cheese and one with pepperoni. That all will save $40. minimum. Pizza is very expensive these days.

So with me being on Vel/Dex two days( Wed and Thurs) cooking dinner is a challenge so my daughter is doing Wednesday night pastas and my son is doing Thursday whatever. Last night he did a turkey pot pie and a tofu pot pie. Boy, were they ever delicious.

This is the tofu one in one of my small Lodge pans!!! He ate it all!!!! it had tofu, mushrooms, carrots, onions, cream, wine, salt and pepper. Yumm.

So because I was dexed up I paid a bill early:) I guess that counts as a frugal win since now it’s one less to do. Actually almost every bill we have, is paid directly except this one and PGE. PGE because we’re on their balance program so that your bill is averaged over the year. For some reason they don’t do auto pay for that.Go figure.

My VW( Buggie) got an oil change this week so that cost but since I drive it under 2,000 miles a year the last time it was done was late 2019 so it was time.

I still need to plan a small shop for lettuce, and a few things next week. I haven’t decided to just go to the Holiday here or actually do a Walmart pick up. I guess I’ll think about it since I won’t do it till Sunday or even Monday.

B went and bought another stack of boards to turn the corner on the fence. We will do 3 panels down to block off the neighbors hoard of junk. Then that will be done. Sometime when the weather turns sunny again I ‘ll get a gallon of redwood stain and paint it. I like painting overall so I don’t mind doing most of that.

Earlier in the week I redid one of the Heywood chair covers. I use painters canvas and it holds up well.

This is the only keyhole Heywood chair I have. The others are solid back. The key hole ones are more valuable.

Basically, you just cut the piece to fit and then staple down. Pretty easy. This is the piece that I took off. I plan on doing another one today.

It’s raining out and it looks like rain for the next week with temperatures colder. I guess that’s good. The mountains will get much needed snow.

Round 1, Velcade, shot #2

I was able to watch the swearing in of Harris and Biden and it really brought me to tears.

Then I left to go to Rocklin for shot #2 and was able to listen to quite a bit on the radio.

This nurse wasn’t quite as good as the first one. She did a blood draw which they need to check my WPC and RBC and she didn’t seem very seasoned in where a vein was on my arm. They do it always in the same place at Quest so not sure what her thing was but she did it and did leave a bruise. A good draw never leaves a mark at all.

This is the injection site. The red lasts maybe 3-4 days. Yesterday she did the opposite side and did leave a little bruising. So the other nurse did seemed to do a better injection. Other than that no complaints and of course, I just want it to work again.

I made a loaf of sourdough seed bread. It came out very nice.

I also made a chocolate sheet pan cake and it’s disappeared so I guess it was good.

Today is just a home day due to dex but I hope to get a few things done.

I should know better than to do business, so I went to pay a bill and and instead of putting in Feb 1st( due date) I left it as today. So I had to move money over from savings to cover it as it will come out tomorrow. Oh well, just a reminder that dex messes with your mind:)

Five on Friday

  • I’m feeling pretty good this morning and most of the ‘Dex’ effects are gone. Just a small bit of hyper-ness. But I put that to use making yogurt in the IP. Actually, I made it yesterday and I put the yogurt selection on for 24 hours. It looks good. Also, frugal-wise, I bought the organic milk at Costco just for this purpose so it was 2 gallons for 9.95. So 1/2 a gallon is about $2.50. That puts a quart of homemade organic yogurt at $2.50.
  • We picked up the free pizza at the Holiday Market for dinner tonight. Each month there is a coupon for something free so this month is the pizza. It’s not the best pizza but heck it’ll be fine. Last night my son cooked the new vegetable burgers from Costco that were on sale. Normally $12.89 and then $5.00 off. The box is 10 burgers I think. They are not soy or pea protein like Beyond burgers or Impossible. They are brown rice, veggies, and almonds. We all like them with pickles, cheese( swiss) and tomatoes, and lettuce. If you go to Costco they are on sale till Jan 24.
  • Our weather is really nice , with a high yesterday of 67. We really need rain but this is nice ,and I’m enjoying it. Next does show some rain though.
  • I’m re-reading all the Sue Grafton books and that’s been fun. She was such a good writer and I totally enjoy reading about Santa Barbara that she called Santa Theresa. I don’t know if I ever mentioned that the first trip I did to SB with B when he was working, we were walking the beach path near the marina and in the parking lot near one of the restaurants was a 1974 light blue VW with Kinsey on the license plate. Of course, if you know her character Kinsey Millhone, she drove a Baby blue 1974 VW. We never saw her but still, I saw her car. ( Sue Grafton’s as she lived in Santa Barbara).
  • We’re planning on having a fire in the fire pit this afternoon as again the temps are still @ 67 degrees. It’s nice to sit out and watch the birds and have a glass of wine or two:)

January 13, 1st Velcade

So yesterday I went down to the Mercy( Dignity Health) satellite medical center in Rocklin. It was about a 25 minute drive so this is less than 1/2 of going down to C street in Sacramento. It was very nice. A quite small infusion room with 5 chairs. The nurses(2) seemed exceptional and mine was over the top friendly and informative.

So this is round 1.

Shot one of 2.5 milligrams of bortezomib. The nurse said she had quite a few patients on different regimes such as weekly( no breaks), 2x weekly for 2 weeks and then a 2 week break. So I thought that was interesting.

The drive home uneventful and I was back quickly.

When I got home I waited till @ noon to take the dex. I rested a bit and got up around 2 and read some. My daughter made some tortellini for dinner. My eyes do get affected with dex and so we only watched one Bridgerton.

I took an Ativan and was in bed @ 9. I didn’t fall right to sleep but eventually. This morning I could tell it was still a Dexish morning so I’ve done some of my morning resets( swish and swipe), tidy kitchen, and started a IP of yogurt. I did cut our walk short by 1 round as I was just too tired to do another.

So onward to Shot # 2 next week.

Five on Friday

Finally, it’s 2021. I’m not sure how great the year will be but I’m hopeful. I start Velcade mid month, as expected. I asked about getting my shots in Rocklin which is about 25 minutes away, and he said sure that would work. Mercy ( or Dignity Health),has a satellite facility there and it will make it easier. Unfortunately, I’ve fractured another rib so it’s smart that I’m starting now. Fractures, in case you don’t know about Myeloma, are one of the damaging aspects of this cancer. I’ve had multiple rib fractures, so I know what it feels like. Unfortunate, to have it happen right now and also quite painful. It limits how much stuff I can do around the house. With rib fractures there’s not much you can do. If it’s a vertebrate or another bone they can some intervention. Oh well, I’m just glad it’s not a vertebrate.

We had a fun New Years eve with sub sandwiches from our Holiday Market. We watched the newish Starsky and Hutch and it was fun. We didn’t crack the champagne but will today.

Budget wise, I came under $800 on groceries including holiday food and alcohol. This is the lowest I’ve had since the pandemic started and I was stockpiling every month. Into January I’ll try and keep it between $700-800. That includes food, non food, and alcohol.(mostly wine and some beer). I’m planning a Costco trip mid month so we’ll see how much that adds if I add in prepper stuff. I’m not planning to but will stockpile a few things like coffee, Rosarita veg. beans, TP, and a few other things. The rest is just stuff we need like cheese, fish, bread etc.

I’m starting another round of decluttering. Mostly this is paper stuff. I’m going thru all our old receipts, medical things and throwing away anything that isn’t needed. Also, little stuff in drawers, like old pens, screws etc. It probably won’t add up to a lot but I’m motivated to do another sweep. I also started a bag for the food bank with food I know we’re not going to really eat. ( I see you canned chicken:) ). There’s nothing big I’m decluttering like furniture since everything we have has already gone thru multiple layers of decluttering. Still, I always like to look at things from a fresh perspective.

I’ve made up my monthly meal plan.

I’m renaming Wednesdays, Pasta Wednesday since that will be my Velcade/Dex day. It’ll make it easier for the others to cook if they know what the plan is. 🙂 I also dashed out to Target to get one of their simple calendars. I loved the one from last year but they didn’t have quite that style. It’s funny how such a simple thing like a minimalist calendar is so hard to find. I checked all over and the nicest were like $20 and up. Even on etsy they were expensive. So Target had just what I wanted for $5.00. It was pretty empty just like I hoped.

Simple Sunday and Christmas is over.

It was a really nice simple christmas.

Everyone got some nice things. I got my son a Pendleton National Park wool blanket from Goodwill Seattle. It’s the Glacier one that is white with color stripes. Very nice and a fraction of the cost new. He also got a used copy of Easton Press” A Tale of Two Cities”. B got a new Leatherman knife since a few years ago when he went to board a plane he had is quite expensive Leatherman in his pocket and they took it away. My daughter got 2 pairs of pruning shears, an Easton Press Grimm Fairy tales and some other stuff including these made in Japan Sound Collection plates… I discovered these by accident about 2 years ago at Goodwill when I found a bowl and fell in love with it. They are quite hard to find and the only place apart from Japan ,I guess, is Ebay.

I got a lovely sweater, a Kitchen Aid hand mixer( I asked for this), and some great gifts from my son, artisan flour, and a scone mix.

All in all a really nice and somewhat minimalist Christmas. It could have been scaled back even a little more but in the end I think it was perfect.

I made a NYT recipe called the Big Lasagna.

This is just the first page of the recipe, there are 2 more pages if you’re interested you can google it. It actually was huge and must have weighed 5 pounds. Lasagna is always our Christmas dinner. Not sure quite when this started but I remember when we were first married making lasagna since it was vegetarian.

It really was delicious.

I took all the Christmas stuff down and put away. I start to feel it looks a little cluttered up after 3 weeks of decorations. So now it’s all tidy and things put back in place.

I’m cooking up the scone mix this morning. It’s a ginger cranberry and it was a nice mix. I’m thinking scones are a nice easy thing to bake so maybe I’ll do this more often. This mix was from the Vermont Store but King Arthur has some lovely ones to choose from.

Our walk was lovely at 6:10am this morning. Still dark, but by 7am we’re getting a nice light and the park is all frosty.( well, it’s frosty before that but then we can see it!).

If you follow FL, we’re in the Living room zone. That was one reason I wanted to put Christmas stuff away. I’ll wash the inside windows and dust everything.

Well, this is the week I go to Sacramento to meet with my oncologist. My first question is going to be” when can I get the Covid vaccine? the second will be when do we start treatment.” 😦 Really, I’d rather start than have myeloma cells multiplying and then risking fractures or worse.

Is 2020 over yet?

What we have 15 days left till January 1st. Honestly, some things about 2020 were awful and some less awful. I’m an introvert in a house of mostly introverts(my son is pretty outgoing) so staying home wasn’t a biggie for me. Not being able to go on camping trips was an inconvenience especially with all the reservations I had and that are frankly a PITA to reserve. Going into stores just for a few things is a thing of the past except maybe our market at the bottom of our hill. Literally I could walk down there in 3 minutes. It would be the walk up that would do me in. Our driveway is probably a 45 degree angle. Okay maybe slightly less. I wonder how you could figure that out?? Anyone? with an engineering degree? The political shit was too much to bear and still is with Trump not conceding and still whining like a toddler that he didn’t get his way and the sycophants that should be removed from office for supporting him.

And I guess I can’t ignore that I’ve relapsed and cancer is back. So starting treatment in January 2021 may not be the best start to a new year. 😦

Well, anyway, I find myself somewhat depressed these days. Maybe it’s all the political crap finally taking its toll on me or not sleeping well or who the F*k knows. I’m sure that this too will pass at some point.

We have been having some nice walks in the early morning and haven’t seen the jerk for quite a while. I think he’s just taken to getting there earlier so as to avoid everyone that shows up a little later. That’s fine with me.

I’m half way thru the Obama book and some of the political stuff is a little over my head but some stuff is so poignant and really speaks to how much he cared about this country. The other book I’m reading that I picked up at the little free library at the park is Chris Bohjalian’s book ” the Guest Bedroom” . His books always have a controversial topic and this one is no exception. It’s about the sex slave traffic from Russia of under age girls. Pretty tough reading but well done. Maybe I need a cozy mystery next.

Last night we had chicken tortilla soup made in the Staub. It was quite good. I’m seriously loving this pot and would highly recommend. Actually, I think I saw the sale was still on ($99.00). I’m convinced it has something to do with how the top is made that is keeping the liquid from evaporating and just deepening the flavors.

Tonight’s dinner is unknown right now but probably something easy. I have salad stuff and maybe a pasta? Or I do have some chicken brats, that would work too.

Simple Sunday

We finally have rain!!

We had to use umbrellas to walk but that was fine. Nobody was there but us so that’s always a treat.

I made some sugar cookie dough this morning and it’s in the fridge for a few hours to harden some. So I’ll start those a little later. I used an Alton Brown recipe and it was pretty straight forward.

If you follow Flylady, we are in the bathroom zone. I can finish mine in about 15 minutes as our bathroom is so small. I might add on a couple of extra tasks this week as well. I consolidated the Christmas ornaments into 1 larger plastic bin that B had bought at Home Depot. So that’s most of the Hallmark boxes and some felted animals when I use to put them out at Christmas on the nature table. I don’t do that anymore but they’re cute enough to keep for now. In the future, who knows? right.

So, as expected, my kappa light chains went up over 600,( high normal is 26.4) and the ratio also doubled( It was 74.3 mg/l ) normal high is 26.3. So Velcade will start in January. So since it’s 3 weeks on 1 week off, I’m thinking @ the second week of January and then a break the first week of February and so on. I guess we’ll have to see how it’s working as to how many rounds it’ll be. That’s a wait and see kind of thing. But one would hope, if it works on the myeloma, 6 months of treatment. Again, big unknowns since we don’t know how things will go. Disappointing but reality.

Tonight I’m cooking a roast chicken in my cast iron pan and I think I’ll make some buttered noodles to go with it as we are potatoed out from latkes. i wanted to get down to Krispy Kreme for donuts( you know to keep the cooking in oil thing going for Hanukkah:) but that may not happen.

B is actually going down for a doctor visit this week as I think they want to see him in person. I’m going to write a list of things for him to bring up because they continue to bother him. He is supposed to get his pneumonia shot and soon he will start revaccinating. I never did revaccinations as back in 2006 it wasn’t common then. Now, I think with autos it is. It is absolutely necessary with an allo transplant though as he had donor cells.

Well, I think I’m going to finish my Sunday chores and read some more of the Obama memoir. BTW, it is a great book and so full of compassion and insight. Definitely worth buying . One thing that really stood out to me was how many times he went to Walter Reed to see the wounded soldiers and how he would interact with them. I tried to look up how many times trump did it but I only found the 1 time shortly after his inauguration. I guess he couldn’t handle seeing the soldiers with one leg or arm or whatever. What a guy!:(

Simple Sunday

We were supposed to have a PGE blackout tomorrow but it seems that the last message I got said it may not happen. We are supposed to have 70 degree weather and some wind. JFC, this is December 6, where is the rain?? I guess we would be ready. We do have what we need and our heat is mostly wood and propane so it would be ok. I just hope we get some kind of rain soon.

This week is the kitchen zone for Flylady followers. It is my biggest zone and takes the longest. Still, clearing your counters and keeping your sink clean will go a long way.

I have a Tartine bread dough started and will do that tomorrow. I used up most of the pieces I had frozen so I’m ready to do a fresh batch.

We been having fun opening the Bon Maman advent jams. They are the cutest little jars which of course I am saving for?? Well, I’ll think of something. Seeds? spices?

I’m planning on making a curry for dinner in my new Staub. I ‘ll make some rice to go with it and also a tofu curry.

Tomorrow I have my labs and I am bracing for the worst. I think if it is under 600mg/L I’ll be happy. Well, not happy but ok. If the same pattern emerges though it will probably over 600. Guessing almost 400mg/L now, so adding 50% ( that’s what it’s done,) will take it to 600 or so. maybe I’ll be lucky though but who knows.???

Well, off to do the first fold on the Tartine bread.