Wednesday, December 24, 2014

December 24

Merry Christmas,everyone.  It seems just like a regular day here.  Paul and Tracy (and probably Daisy) are coming tomorrow.

Barrie won't be here for Christmas.  She said Kasey is at her Dad's house anyway.

I've done over an hour of physical therapy today.  I was prepared to hate it, but  I know I'm making progress and getting stronger. 

The food is another story,  I sent my tray  back today and asked for a bowl of tomato soup , some toast, and a large glass of milk.  I got a bowl of cold soup, one piece of toast and no milk.

A nurse mentioned that a local artist comes twice a week to give lessons.  Guess I will check it out.

I've knit a scarf and hat, and started on a sweater.  I tend to get sleepy when I knit!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Update 12/17/14

Hi everyone, it's Tracy hijacking Mom's blog again, because I wanted to share great news with you.
We met with Mom’s care team today, and things are going really, really well! She is eating MUCH better – pretty regularly 50% - 75% of her meals. Her physical therapists have her walking 500-600 feet (with her walker) on some days...not every day, but she's definitely building up her stamina. They suggested that she start walking down to the dining room for meals, which she wasn’t crazy about, but I’m hoping they can convince her to do it. The Dr. said if she’s more active we could take her off the blood thinners, which she’s been on because of their concern about blood clots due to her being bedridden.
She has gained 2 or 3 pounds, and seems much brighter and happier. The Dr. would like to try reducing her pain meds even further to see if that will help with her alertness, and they want to make an appointment with the cancer center for a followup in January. Now that they feel she's on the upswing, they want to see what the cancer Dr. feels is the next best step in her cancer treatment.

She has started knitting a scarf, and asked for some movies and magazines. Her pressure sore is also improving a little, which they think is due in good part to her increased appetite and calorie/protein intake.

So overall, good news and I thought you’d want to know. I have asked Barrie to come down for Christmas, hoping that she and Kasey could help keep Mom's spirits up after the bad news about Judi, but haven’t heard back from her.

I do have a favor to ask of all of you...please pester Mom to get out of bed and walk to the dining room for meals. She's never been much for caving in to peer pressure, but maybe just this once it will work. The faster she regains her strength, the sooner she can come home. And that's MY Christmas wish this year! 

Love to you all,

Monday, December 15, 2014

Hi All

Yes, it's me, what's left of me, anyway.  If you want entertainment, don't try this.  I  find myself wondering what hit me.

Tracy says I spent a week at the Vail Valley Medical and I don't remember any of it.  That's when they decided maybe  they were medicating me too much. 

sleep, eat, knit, sleep some more.

Thanks for all the cards and letter from all of you.  I love and miss you all.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Update 12/14/14

Aren't you all proud of me that I posted an update without Claire reminding me? LOL

This will be short and sweet, because I haven't been able to actually go see Mom since I've been back. The facility is still under a quarantine due to the GI outbreak; the head nurse had thought they might be cleared up by Thursday or Friday, but I guess there were a couple of people who got sick again, so they decided to keep the quarantine in place. Disappointing, but what can you do...

I have talked to Mom on the phone a couple of times; the good news is that she has at least tasted the food there enough to complain that she doesn't like it. The bad news is, that means she's still not eating much of anything. I told her to keep a list of things that sound good to her, and to ask them for those things. And she hasn't had any Ensure for a while, which is something I know she will eat and it provides a lot of protein and calories, so I need to talk with the nurse about why that's not happening.

Our conversations have been short, but she sounds like she feels better and maybe/hopefully has a little more energy. I have a list of things to bring to her and one of those is her laptop, so maybe she will start posting her own updates for you. I'm sure you would all appreciate that!

The Bronco game is starting so I will sign off. I'm hoping to be able to go see her after work tomorrow; keep your fingers crossed that the quarantine is lifted.

Have a great rest of your weekend,

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Update 12/9/14

Good morning, all. I do not have much news to share, but I promised to post an update when I got back from vacation so here you go...

Bill and Alice did a wonderful job checking on Mom while I was gone, and it was a huge relief to know that someone like them could be here on her behalf. The care facility is a good one, but it helps to have someone there daily to make sure she's getting the care she needs. The staff can get a little lax unless you stay of top of what's going on.

I spoke with Mom on the phone on Saturday, and she sounded much brighter. Alice said she was dressed and in her wheelchair when they got there, which I think was a first. I tried to go see her last night, but when I got there, the facility had been quarantined due to a GI outbreak. They wouldn't even let me go peek my head in if I gowned up with mask and gloves, so they were taking it very seriously which I guess is good. The head nurse said Mom and her roommate were two of the only people in the facility that hadn't been hit by the bug, so appreciate their efforts to keep it from spreading any further.

I was able to talk for about an hour with the head nurse, who went over Mom's charts with me and we talked about how things are going. There may be a slight (very slight) improvement in her eating, so we are hopeful that this might signal a turnaround.

The bedsores had gotten infected the last time I was there, but a round of antibiotics seem to have kicked that and the nurse said it appears to have little bit of new tissue growth, which is great news. Hopefully she'll continue to eat more, which will give her body the energy it needs to heal.

That's all I have to share; please let me know if I'm not answering all of your questions. I don't want to cross the line between an update and TMI.

Happy Holiday to you and your loved ones,

Monday, November 24, 2014

Update 11/24/14

Hello all, not much to update, but I wanted to make sure I posted something before the Thanksgiving can all thank Claire Faler for the gentle reminder that it had been a while! :-)

My husband and I will be out of town visiting his parents, so my Uncle Bill and Aunt Alice (Mom's brother & sister-in-law) have generously volunteered to stay at my house so they can check on Mom while I'm away. It will make me feel better to know someone will be here for her, and it was so nice of them to offer so that I would feel comfortable leaving town. Alice has plenty of experience dealing with nursing homes, so I know Mom will be in good hands!

Mom has been eating a little bit more, although still not near enough. But it's encouraging that she says she actually feels a little hungry, even if just a few bites fill her up. She likes ice cream! Not much else, but she likes plain, vanilla ice cream. And apparently Cream of Wheat is another dish she requests, regardless of the time of day.

Her pain level fluctuates, and the medical staff are unclear whether it's coming from her back, the tumor, or her bed sores. Regardless, we are working on tapering off some of her pain medications in an effort to increase her alertness so that she will eat and exercise and hopefully get strong enough to come home.

Exercise, exercise...she absolutely HATES having to do physical therapy! Luckily, she has a very good physical therapist who doesn't take "no" for an answer. I just wish the rest of the staff had that attitude; many of them give up far too easily in my opinion, whether it's getting her to eat or shower, or just sit up in a chair for a while. She is still extremely weak, and that unfortunately doesn't seem to be improving, so eating and P.T. are key.

The social worker suggested that maybe she needed some activities to motivate her, so I also got her some magazines and brought her some yarn so she could knit; she hasn't actually knit anything yet, but she holds the yarn and talks about what she's going to make!

Thank you all so much for the wonderful cards she's been receiving; I read them to her, and leave them for her to look at. I have another meeting with her "care team" on Wednesday, although I doubt I will hear anything new. Then I'll be gone for a week, but I will do my best to post an update when I get back.

Thanks again for your support and prayers.  Happy Thanksgiving to you all!


Saturday, November 15, 2014

Good morning, everyone...don't get too excited, it's just Tracy. I promised Mom I would post an update since she's been offline for a while.

For those of you who don't know, Mom has lung cancer. In August she came to live with me in Colorado to undergo treatment at the Shaw Cancer Center. She underwent an aggressive treatment of both radiation and chemotherapy, which did result in a reduction in the tumor size of about 42%.  Unfortunately, the treatment was too much for her and we stopped chemotherapy early, although she did fight her way through and complete the radiation.

We had to hospitalize her 3 weeks ago due to her weakened condition and overall state of malnutrition. After a week at Vail Valley Medical Center she was transferred to Heritage Park Care Center in Carbondale for rehabilitation. The first two weeks it was touch and go, but she is starting to show some improvement, albeit slowly.

We met with her "care team" on Thursday - this consists of the doctor, a physical therapist, a dietitian, an occupational therapist (still figuring out what that gal does), a social worker, a wound care nurse, the head nurse and her case manager. It was a very crowded room.

The good news is that she is a little more alert and eating a little bit more. Her appetite is still nowhere near what it needs to be so that is the main concern - to get some nutrition in her. She's lost about 45 lbs, but the last week or so that seems to have slowed down.

The not so good news is that she is still extremely weak and cannot sit up or get out of bed without help. She sleeps pretty much constantly, unless she is woken up for physical therapy or meals. She has pressure sores on her bottom that are also a big concern due to infection and her weakened immune system. Even sitting up tires her, and while I've passed on to her the emails and text messages she's received, she's not yet up to returning calls. But she does appreciate your concern and support.

I visit her daily, so I would be happy to pass on any messages. My mailing address is PO Box 5246, Gypsum, CO 81637 if you would like to send a card or letter. Or you can email her at

Not much else to share; at this point it's up to her. She is getting the best possible care and only time will tell. Thank you all for being her friend and for all your thoughts and prayers.

Tracy LeClair

Saturday, October 25, 2014


The next time I buy I product with a lid that is hard to open for my protecration, I think I think I will throw it out the window.  That's right,  "protecration".  When you figure it out, let me know.

Or how about spoons that are too long and slip down into the pan or bowl, or plastic or foil covers that snap back and spatter back onto the lid while you are wiping off your shirt front?

Or maybe you could spend your day reading labels or signs on some of the products you buy.  There is lots of entertainment to be found there..For instance, "

"Do not use orally." -- On a toilet bowl cleaning brush.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


I don't think I will ever get used to the view out this east window.  I never saw a place where you could see a sunrise view out the east window like this.  It doesn't last long, but it's genuine!

Groucho, your nose is so big!


I have an idea, people in my art group.  Let's buy this place.  It's right on the golf course, we can use it as our painting retreat, and Rollie can live there for care and upkeep on the place.  We can sell our paintings and make millions!  I'm sure it's affordable!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014


A couple of weeks ago, I rode to Glenwood Springs with Tracy and Paul for her to exchange some curtains.  Ever since then, I have had an ad for Glenwood Springs Ford at the top of my blog page.  How does it do that?

And there has been an ad for the hotel for the place we ate lunch.  Boy, Big Brother really does watch you!!

I am not strong enough to continue with the chemo.  That is why they had stopped it.  I still have six daily raidiology treatmets left.  We'll keep you posted.

Saturday, October 11, 2014


I just used the little flashlight "app" on my iPhone to help me find a tiny white pill I dropped on the floor, and a big crumb.  Now, how cool is that?  That's life in the fast lane!

And  am knitting a pair of "fingerless" gloves. 

I also found what a "knook" is.  It's a cross between a "knitting needle" and a crochet "hook", and I plan on using one.  I think it's a hook, and you use it like you would a needle.

This is what it looks like out my window Last night.  It 's really sunset, but the sun is shining on the mountains to the east.  Hard to sleep through this.  

I found what a "Knook" is today.  It is a cross between a "hook" and a "needle" and you use it like a "knitting needle".  Sounds simple. And one less thing to lose between the couch cushions.

 I wonder if Tracy remembered how closely her shirt matched the new drapes.


Thursday, October 9, 2014


Tracy took one look at the new orange hat I got yesterday, and said "That has got to be potentially the ugliest hat I have ever seen."  Okay, I just ate the macaroni and cheese she made me and shut up.  She's right, of course.

Great news, and some not so great from the doctor yesterday.  The tumor has shrunk 43% but we won't know for a couple more treatments yet how much damage has been done to the spinal chord.  We do know it hasn't spread. 

Still having problems keeping medications straight, and under control. 

Paul and Tracy are going camping this weekend, and I have given in (finally) and agreed to having the PT send in an aide to be with me part time.  I know it will be easier for them to know someone is here when they are gone and out of cell phone range.  Don't know for sure why I was so against it.  Stubborn old lady.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014


Managed to make myself feel a little down this morning when Judi texted me that even though Rock Rabbit's sign said it was open at 7:00, they weren't open at 7:30.  Nor was the Patio.  My friends ended up at the Stockmen's and had a good time anyway.  That made me feel a lot better.  I was looking forward to a good party!

I'll stay mad at Rock Rabbit for a while, though!

Here is a photograph of an old Buick Tracy and Paul have, taken by a friend of theirs.  Yep, it's going to be a painting one of these days.  Isn't it great?  Not sure what to do about the setting, though.  Trees, hills, old fence, mountains, desert?  Or maybe just the old stone building, roughed up and aged a little bit. 
If Tracy comes and in and catches me not eating, she'll forgive me if I'm drinking a Gator Aide, won't she?
I found a couple things this morning to make my life easier - a small notebook, a magnifying glass, my scissor sharpeners, some rubber bands and some lotion.  I need to add those things to my "nest" on the floor at the end of the couch along with the knitting.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014


Up very early this morning, but I wasn't the first! While Paul and I were chasing the sound of a ringing iPhone all over the house, the phone was ringing happily away, charging itself under the couch cushion.  I was trying to remind all my friends that they are invited to breakfast on me at Rock Rabbit tomorrow morning, on me.

That means ALL of you who helped me move, including your moral support!

I hope the elusive Barrie and Kasey get this message.  Just don't bring Kat!



Sunday, October 5, 2014


Paul and Tracy were going to hang curtains today, but I think the golf clubs won out.  I'm sure they'll get it done after that.

Tracy ordered some large canvas art prints for her office downstairs.  She has been searching for quite a while and finally made up her mind what she wanted.  They are a little on the abstract side, but beautiful.  I'll photograph them after she gets them up.

Yesterday she got my bluebird picture hung a little higher on the wall over the bed, and hung the mirror.  The mirror matches the hand made pine dressers and night stands in that room.  It reflects the bluebird perfectly when I open my eyes in the morning.  He glares at me every morning.

What did I accomplish?  Well, I tipped a small set of plastic drawers over and dumped all the paper and pads from the top onto the floor.  Good job, Duene.  I guess I better stick to the knitting. 

Saturday, October 4, 2014


Beautiful drive to Glenwood Springs today.  Tracy returned the curtains she got at J.C Penney's.  We had lunch at the Amtrak station in Glenwood.  Drove by the big hot springs pool, but didn't see Doc Holliday around.  I guess the springs never helped him that much anyway. 

We went to Target, and I got some new dark glasses, a new bright colored wallet, and got to drive the electric cart around.  Didn't even run into anyone!

I took this picture in their living room just before we left.


We took these two photos of a white cross high on the hillside along the Interstate just east of Gypsum.  I Googled it, but didn't find out much about it except that there was mining there in some very early days.

Thursday, October 2, 2014


Optimism and good news yesterday.  My doctor is pleased with the progress of the treatments and says the cancer has NOT spread and doesn't seem to be growing.  They will do a Cat scan next week, then are looking at from three to five more treatments before they reevaluate. The pain is mostly coming from the pressure the tumor is putting against the spine.  They will continue to reduce the pain by reducing swelling, and the size of the tumor, hopefully.

Meanwhile, I just keep on smiling, eating, and knitting.  And taking my medication, which is hard for me to keep track of.  Tracy is doing her darnedest to keep me on track there!

 Vicky is showing off the art supply cupboard at the apartment. She and Judi have been working their tails off to help get things moved out.  What would I do without friends like them?  They are worth a million bucks (no, more than that).

Once again, Tracy has threatened to cut up my credit card.  Yesterday I put those stiff old Crocs in the closet and wore my new moccasins (bedroom slippers, actually.) They felt so good on my feet, which are still swollen.  I got the new remote for the Bose iPod docking station and XM radio and the pager. 

After spending years building her reputation as being an unfriendly, nasty, cat, this is what greeted Judi yesterday when she went to the apartment.  Oh, somebody needs this cat!

Judi found this old (very old) sketch in one of my sketchbooks.  Wow!  I didn't even do this!  Tracy's dad drew this elk in one of my old sketchbooks years ago. 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014


There are just some lessons that shouldn't have to be learned early in the mornings - like shake a bottle of Milk of Magnesia without first making sure the lid is on tight. 

I can't tell for sure how low the snow level is on the hills.  Can't see much of them for the clouds.

I've posted this before, but it fits the day so perfectly.

Tracy's cleaning person didn't show up Tuesday, so she fired him.  Here is what she put on Facebook looking for a replacement.  I wonder if that is Rowdy interviewing for the job? 
Friends in the Eagle/Gypsum area...I find myself in need of a new cleaning service. Anyone have someone they can recommend that does an amazing job? I have a dog and two cats and a mother who is allergic, so attention to detail is a must.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014


I was up really early again this morning.  Slept like a log and hardly moved all night.  So glad I am sleeping well.

Today a physical therapist will be here, then Tracy will be here to take me for the radiology treatment.  And make me eat, and eat, and eat.

In the meantime, I really have accomplished something - made some corrections on a couple of knitting projects.  That's always a hassle.  I am expecting some new yarn in the mail soon.  Yippee!  Spent time looking for my fingernail clippers, and didn't find them.  I am told I will lose my hair, so why are my fingernails growing like crazy?  I did order a new remote for the Bose docking station for my XM radio and IPod.  It was easy to find online, and cheap.  A lot of people must lose them!

Rainy, foggy day.  I know Pinedale is sick of rain, but it is sure pretty here.

I sneaked this picture of my pickup on Sublette for Sale this morning with Barrie's name and phone number.  I'm hoping people will bug her and she will get it sold for me!  I've changed my mode of transportation for a walker.  And it's red too!  I think I'll call it "Pappy" (short for Paprika)?  Why do we name things?


Monday, September 29, 2014


Big day today - both chemo and radiation treatments scheduled.  It's really an easy day, though.  I sit in a recliner for the chemo treatment, hooked to a big bag dripping the solution into my arm, covered with a warm blanket, and reading my Kindle.  I usually go to sleep.  Radiation takes about 10 minutes.  I'm never sure if I'm supposed to be taking my shirt off or putting it on.

My calendar is a little small, so Tracy brought me this new planner yesterday.  Pretty neat, especially what is written on the front cover.  A bonus six months is nice to plan on!  I don't know how they can guarantee that, but it's a nice thought.

Well, I will feel proud as soon as I get around to pretending to do something!

Friday, September 26, 2014


I have achieved something!! Check out the time, people! I have beat Judi up and posted my blog.  Can't decide whether to eat some ice cream, or go back to bed!

My friend Mary Lou, who now lives in Bullhead City with her daughter, Kris, sent me this yesterday.  She sings "I Want to be Loved by You"! 

Mary Lou babysat Tracy when she was little, and they used to play a game called "The Horrible Pink Curtain", a totally original game they made up.  Neither one of them remembers what the point of the game was now, but they had fun.  Tracy thinks this must be "The Horrible Pink Curtain's" grand daughter.  Look at those knobby knees!

After just one song from her, Daisy stayed behind Paul for protection.

I am supposed to be pushing the protein.  Seems like all I do is eat, sleep, eat some more, and sleep some more.  I guess that's my job right now.  And soon a physical therapist will be bossing me around a couple days a week. I may soon be sleepwalking just to keep everyone happy.

And how's this for a cool iPhone case? 

Thursday, September 25, 2014


I don't think I remembered to say that Tracy and Paul have threatened to put a "Grandma Block" on the TV.  I have no idea how I did it, but I managed to purchase a baseball game - for $40 of all things! When I saw what I had done, I immediately turned the set off - didn't even watch the game!  Tracy got it straightened out.  And no, they have not blocked me, not even from porn!

I keep forgetting to post "Throwback Thursday" photos.  Here is one of my old favorites.  Tracy and her sister Leslie are wearing the matching shirts I made them.  Marty and Sonny have slicked back hair that probably never moved all day. Sonny has been posting photos lately on Facebook of him dressed in his Indian regalia. 

A physical therapist was here yesterday to start me on a program.  Okay, I said I'll try it for a while, and I will.  I don't remember now how often he will be coming, and they have promised I can quit if I want.  I'm sure I would rather be knitting, or reading.
I like this thought.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014


Another beautiful day in Colorado.  This place grows on you!

Tracy was up in the middle of the night again to check on me.  What am I going to do with her?  She is such a light sleeper.  Sometimes I am up in the middle of the night reading, or knitting.  It's not that I am lying awake worrying about anything.  Far from it!  It's just that the couch is so comfortable, I am comfortable, and just feel like reading, or knitting.

Also planning on how to get my drawing and painting area set up.

I told Tracy I DID need her last night.  I was almost to order some new yarn, and saved myself just in time.  But I may change my mind and order it anyway. 

I am having lots of problems with Amazon.  It seems some of my orders are being shipped FedEx and those people can't get their act together and my orders are being sent to the post office box in Pinedale, and end up at Sublette Center.  UPS is getting my goodies here just fine.  I need to get that straightened out soon.

I actually texted Barrie this morning!  I'm learning.  But my fingers are too fat! Love the new phone!

I promised myself about thirty years ago I would never get another flu shot, but I got one yesterday.  No ill effects, and I even forgot which arm it was in.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014


Long day yesterday, but easy.  Had both chemo and radiology which takes several hours.  Things are going good.

Woke up on the couch at midnight and had a tough decision - either go to bed and maybe not sleep well (maybe), or stay up and knit.  I drank water, had some Ensure, stayed up and knit and watched part of a movie!  It woke Tracy up, and she came down to make  sure I was okay.  I should have remembered she is a very light sleeper. I think I'll get her a little beeper thingie.  So I can assure her I will beep her if I fall at night.  Paul didn't hear me at all.

New iPhone is working great.  Now to explore everything about it, which seems to be exactly like the iPad.  Somehow, I have XM radio playing on it right now.

Sunday, September 21, 2014


Tracy took me to Cocso yesterday, put me in an electric chair, and we shopped!  I now have an iPhone 5 and am trying to figure it out.  It helps to have some experience with the iPad, but it is confusing.  Having fun, and Tracy is so good with technical stuff.

The electric chair was quite an experience.  I didn't run over anyone, and had a few near misses on the corners.

After Cocso, we went for a drive.  The colors in Colorado are "peaking" and Tracy and I definitely "peaked." A beautiful drive!

This is Gilman, Co.  It is an abandoned mining town.  I guess the company just came into town one night and moved everyone out, even leaving their dishes on the table.  The town was abandoned in 1984 because of toxic chemicals.  It is currently a ghost town on private property and is strictly off limits to the public.

There are the abandoned houses of Gilmore.  There are cars still left in garages, toys, clothes, etc.  Kind of spooky. 

This is the bridge over the highway into Redstone.

When I saw the main street of little Redstone, I told Tracy I wanted to buy the town and just live there!

Saturday, September 20, 2014


One of these days, Judi, I am going to beat you up and have my blog written before you do!  I woke up early, was just lying there looking out the window at the sky and decided to get up.  Paul and Tracy are having a bed delivered today, so they are moving the one out of their bedroom downstairs.  Daisy and I are supervising.

Am loving watching the Rockies pulling out their wins the last two nights. 
Plans for the weekend - I get the weekend off from treatment.  Paul plans on golfing, and Tracy  mentioned that the fall colors are at their peak.  Am looking forward to the day.
The furniture is coming from Denver, so no telling when it will get here.  And Tracy has new drapes to hang.

Thursday, September 18, 2014


Tracy is at a conference in Keystone, so Paul is in charge of getting me to treatment today and tomorrow. 

I went to sleep on the couch last night and Tracy didn't have the heart to wake me up and make me go to bed.  Couch sleeps nice!!

This is what I see in the ceiling in the radiology room while I am laying on my back looking up.  Gorgeous.  There are two of them, very similar. 

My friend Claire is just about the most thoughtful person I know.  She sent me a head cover, bandana type, yesterday.  I have been knitting a hat, which will probably fit the Jolly Green Giant, and I will probably never wear it.

Hmm, eat, drink, take pills, sleep, read, etc.  Exciting life.  The new walker came, and all we had to do was take it out of the box and unfold it.  Have to think of a name for it!

There are two hawks circling in the sky outside the window.  Hope they aren't watching the little rabbit.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Things to do today

Number one on my list of things to do today:

  1. Get up early to watch beautiful sunrise
  2. Turn on fireplace because it's chilly in here
  3. Sit on couch and blissfully ignore smoke filling the air
Well, I got all that done.  Tracy has called the fireplace man to come.  That was the first time it has been used for more than just turning it on to see if it worked.  It took about 30 minutes to fill the room with smoke, and the smoke alarm never went off.  I will not charge Paul and Tracy for testing it out for them.

Tracy plans on taking me to the Verizon store after we go to Shaw today and get a new phone.  I have cancelled everything I had with Century Tel.  Barrie called yesterday, and I told her I am going to learn to text.  Kasey already knows how, of course.
This watercolor painting hangs in the hallway at the Shaw Center.  I had Tracy photograph it for me yesterday.  Eye Candy.  I love this artist's style and colors.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014


"I don't always go to WalMart... but when I do, I'm reminded that I have hit the genetic lottery."

This is from my friend, Alan Berge, in Wyoming.  Thanks, Alan!  I hadn't been to a Walmart in a long time, and just sat in the car and watched the parking lot.  I have a new walker ordered, so when it comes and is ready, look out Walmart!  Tracy has to take me.  And yes, I am taking my camera!

And taking a camera to Walmart sounds like a good way to start!

I had my first chemo treatment and first radiology yesterday.  It took a long time, of course, but no pain, and so far no after effects that I'm aware of.  I took both my kindle reader and some knitting, and got in a good nap.  I will have radiology every day, and chemo once a week.  The radiology only takes a few minutes.
I am having my land phone, internet, and email account from CenturyTel turned off the end of the month. I called them this morning.  I have discovered something when dealing with places like that who are usually so difficult to deal with.  First thing, tell them you have cancer and let your voice tremble a little bit.  They immediately turn into a helpful person who speaks perfect English, and give you the assistance you need without many questions!  Keep that in mind.
I have discovered something else.  You remember the old prayer (I think it is a prayer) about fear of "things that go bump in the night?"  Well, that "bump" is actually just the ice maker in the big fridge/freezer in the bar, kicking out ice cubes!  No need to be afraid. 


Tracy brought me this little planter full of succulents last week.  Aren't they beautiful?  They may be in trouble, though.  She thinks she brought home some of those pesky little flies that like to come home with from you from places like Walmart and the grocery stores.  I hope not.
For those of you who read my blog, I will now be using my google email account, which, is  You may be getting notification of this more than once, but the old account will be cancelled as of next week, and don't want to miss anyone. 

Saturday, September 13, 2014


Okay friends, I believe the above picture explains my status for today. Constipation and dehydration problems solved.  That's all I am going to say on the subject and more than I'm sure any of you want to know.

Radiation and Chemo both start Monday.  The show is on the road.

And this little guy came out on the deck yesterday just to say hello.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Living Life in the Fast Lane

Sat in the car while Tracy went in a super-duper Wal-Mart somewhere for groceries on the way home from Vail hospital.  Now I know why people take their cameras to those big Wal-Marts to watch people dressed (or not), and what they wear.  I didn't have the nerve to take photos!

This is why we were almost late for our appointment!

Also heard a train. 

Nap time now!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014


Same old, same old.  Not doing a very good job of keeping up with all my friends and relatives, but I hope you understand. 

Beautiful rainy day today in Gypsum.  Flash flood warnings, but NOTHING like the Southwest is getting!  Leaves are turning here quickly. 

This sign is still in effect.  No exceptions!

Sunday, September 7, 2014


I spent time yesterday writing a group email to everyone in my address book.  It was a great, newsy letter, and I have no idea where it went when I pushed "send".  The only thing of real interest was my constipation story, which I don't want to talk about and you don't want to hear.  When I told Barrie, she laughed and said "Yeah, been there, done that."  I guess dogs get constipated too.

I'll catch up more later.  In the meantime, I am being well taken care of by all!

Love you all and thanks for your thoughts and good cheer.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Settled in

I'm all settled in at Paul and Tracy's house.  Had an uneventful six hour drive to get here.  Paul and Tracy packed all my things downstairs and Tracy unpacked everything.

Here we are on the downstairs deck.  It's hard for me to think of this as "downstairs", as it is on a hillside and looks out over a large golf course. 

Here is the view out my window this morning. 

And here is my very own "Red Solo Cup".  Sorry, it's got something like "Pedialite" in it, and it is for sick kids to keep them hydrated.  Tracy brought it home. Well, I can pretend, can't I?  And there is a full bar down here!

My first doctor appointment is tomorrow afternoon.  Things are finally getting started!

Saturday, August 30, 2014

on our way

Tracy is here, whirling around boxes in my apartment, packing up more than I intended, but I am happy to let her do it.  I had a nap on the bed.  She cleaned out the refrigerator too.

Bill and Alice were here.  We always have such a fun visit.

By this time tomorrow, I will probably be in Colorado, picking out my favorite napping spot in Tracy's house.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014


Just relaxing at home, under the care of nurse Kasey.  She fixed herself cereal when she got here this morning, then brought me my water bottle so I would have it by the bed.  Later, she settled in with the iPad, and I laid down on the couch for a nap.  After about an hour, she said "Grandma, I need you to wake up a minute and have a drink of water.  Then she checked to make sure I had taken my pills, and keeps fussing at me about eating something.  She's a great caretaker.

I now have an appointment for September 4 with  Dr. Hardenburgh at the Shaw Cancer Center in Co.  They called me this afternoon and set up the appointment.  She said it will take about a week to do the CT SIM to map the radiology and to complete the treatment plan. 

Tracy has plans to come get me this weekend.  I am so ready to get this show on the road!

I went to the apartment office this morning to pay them my rent and told them I would be gone about a month, maybe more.  Barrie and KC will watch the apartment and take care of the cat.

This is ridiculous.  Every time I try to log onto Google, this is what I get.  It's got to be a joke, but haven't been able to find any information about it on the Internet.

Friday, August 22, 2014


Just returned from the third visit to Jackson this week.  After discussion with the doctor and Barrie, we have voted for Tracy!

Yes, I am going to the Shaw Cancer Center in Edward, Colorado for radiation treatment.  It's very close to where Paul and Tracy live.  Tracy will come get me. I hope it won't be long until I can get in.

And Barrie is stuck with the cat! 

Yes, I still have a sense of humor.  The doctor asked me this morning how I was ever able to teach kindergarten for thirty years.  I told him I drank a lot.

Thursday, August 21, 2014


To all my friends and family, you probably think I am ignoring you, and you're right, I am!  I really do appreciate the calls from all of you and offers to help.  I will do doubt be calling on some of you.

Tomorrow is my third appointment in one week in Jackson at the hospital.  I am hoping all the testing is done - all the needles, tubes, beeping machines, nurses with cold hands, clothes with no back, cold feet, etc.  Well, you know.

I have an appointment tomorrow to discuss it all with the doctor and decide what kind of treatment, how often, etc.  At least that's what I hope happens.Then maybe my life can settle into some kind of order. 

Boy, could I have fun with all this if I could reach it!  Yes, I was bored.

Friday, August 15, 2014


Well, my feet have touched the ground for a day or two anyway.  I have ben sent to the Oncology Center at the Jackson Hopital for more tests, more scans and talking.  Yes, Lung Cancer.  I finally have the need for one of those appointment/Calendars.  I will have a biopsy done Friday, then back to the oncology department at the hospital on Monday or Tuesday.

I tried to contact relatives and friends earlier this week so you won't be taken off guard when someone else writes it on a wall.  Please share this with everyone you might think knows me.  I know it can be embarrassing to someone if they make a remark that might seem rude because they didn't know.

This is where I live!!

I'm so lucky Barrie has such a terrific boss.  Susie will do everything she can to make sure Barrie is available to drive me to Jackson.
And Tracy wants me to come to Colorado and stay with them.  One of the best Cancer Centers in the country is located very close to where she works.  I haven't even had a treatment yet, and don't know what kind of treatments I will have or how often.  But it's nice to have options, and kids who care about you.
New cat in the apartments!  When Barrie and KC left to go home, a man was walking a cat on a long leash down the hall.  Of course Kasey immediately got acquainted.  He's a young cat, very pretty, and very loving.  Kasey was smitten.  Should have taken a picture and enlarged it to show to my cat!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


Happy things first.  Here is the "toothless wonder".  She lost two teeth in one day. 

Barrie bought four tons of hay, and borrowed  her father and his trailer to go get it.  Kasey learned to use a hay hook, and was dragging 70 lb. bales up to the trailer.  She thinks she is "Superwoman."

I called the clinic over a week ago for an appointment, and couldn't get in until a week later.  When Barrie came Monday morning, I was on the couch.  She took Kasey to work with her, then called an hour later and told me she had my appointment changed to 2:00 that afternoon.  I think she told them something to the effect that they treated their dogs better than the clinic treated their patients.
So - I had X-rays done on my back on Monday. It showed I had a compression fraction.  New pain pills, and went home. Later that afternoon, Dr. Freunpreis  called and wanted me to come in at 9:00 this morning for a CT.  (New pills worked much better, and I felt better.)  So KC and I went up at 9:00, and no one up there knew why I was there.  They drew some blood, I finally got a CT, and we were home three hours later. 
I am in the vortex!

Unless something changes, I should be able to make it to art group tomorrow.  I have really missed my artist friends.

Saturday, August 9, 2014


Still haven't figure out how to send email, mostly because I haven't spent any time experimenting with it.  I did find that I can use CenturyTel's email program to send mail.  It works.

I watched this new DVD yesterday on painting watercolor portraits.  I was disappointed.  She didn't get to the finishing stages of her demonstration, so it didn't look much like what is on the cover of the case. 

My back doesn't want me to do any art work now, anyway.

Barrie's truck is now all dressed up with its new "cow catcher".  She and her dad put it on yesterday.  Looks like it should do its job!  Look out, moose!  Don't step out in front of this truck!
Just read in the news that Charles Manson (80 years old now) is going to be married to a 25 year old girl he met through correspondence.  She has moved to the town where he is in prison, and he has completed the paper work.  She has carved a swastika in her forehead to match his.  Oops, I think I just threw up a little bit in my mouth there.