Saturday, February 26, 2011

More Ramblings...

(I got to shave my legs today.)  I whispered that for anyone that might find that a sensitive subject.  8-)  Of course, we spend all our adult lives thinking what a chore it is but I found it very exciting that I had even grown hair on my legs.  Whoo Whoo!!  Count your blessings, ladies!

I did a lot of other things today also, like cleaning off my disaster of a desk (at home).  Oh had really piled up.  I also made us some of the Quesadilla Chicken Soup for lunch.  I love to make a big batch of it and then take a cup with me to work for lunch everyday.  I have no problem eating the same thing for lunch all week.  Some might think "BORING" but I like routines and as long as it is something I really like, I can eat it every day.  We also finished the laundry today.  

I'm sitting here with my Eminence facial drying on my face and maybe after I get done with that we will go out shopping.  I can't think of anything major that we need but just the regular weekly shopping needs to be done.

It has gotten into the high sixties outside today and the birds are singing and Shadow is sleeping in the sun.  See cat below...what a life...

Here is a little Max for you for today.  When I'm feeling a little out of step with (and maybe different than) the rest of the world, it is always good to know that I am in step with Jesus no matter what.  8-) 

"You Have a Place With Him

None were more shunned by their culture than the blind, the lame, the lepers, and the deaf. They had no place. No name. No value. Canker sores on the culture. Excess baggage on the side of the road. But those whom the people called trash, Jesus called treasures." 

By Grace Alone -

- T

Friday, February 25, 2011

Recipe Day

Those of you who know me, understand that I don't LOVE cooking but can do so when I need to.  8-)  This blog will NEVER be dedicated to cooking so don't get all excited that there is a recipe coming out of it and expect more....LOL.

A friend of mine (Terrie) asked me to post this really good soup recipe that I invented while on chemo so here you go, Terrie.  Terrie and I named it together today.  8-)  It is very easy to fix if you're wanting a quick and delicious soup to warm your tummy.

Quesadilla Chicken Soup


2 14-15 oz cans of Diced Tomatoes (seasoned with basil, oregano, and comes already seasoned)
3 boneless chicken thighs
1 small can rotel tomatoes
Half of a large bag of mixed vegetables (your choice what the mix is)
12 oz cubed velveeta cheese
~2 cups water

In large pot, put the diced tomatoes, rotel tomatoes, chicken and water and bring to a boil. 
Cover and simmer for 40 minutes (or until chicken is tender)
Remove chicken and cut into small pieces then put back in pot
Add mixed vegetables and bring back to boil. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
Add cubed velvetta cheese and stir until melted in.  Bring to a boil stirring constantly and serve immediately.


By Grace Alone -

- T

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Small Acts of Kindness Are Remembered

My sister asked about the helicopter on the bookcase in my office.  There is kind of an interesting story behind it. 

The gentleman that gave it to me was someone I worked with back in 1997 when I started with Boeing as a writer.  He took a particular 'shine' to me for some unknown reason.  He was in his 60's at the time and was heading towards retirement.  His name was Gene and he had a strong case of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.  He would come into work at precisely 7:00 every morning.  Not a minute sooner or later.  He would proceed to sit down at his desk and work diligently until exactly 9:00 and then he would take a ten minute break and come into my office (it was next to his) and chat with me for exactly 10 minutes.  He would tell me all kinds of adventures that he had had in his lifetime.  Then after ten minutes he would go back to work until 10:50 when he would go to the fridge and get his sandwich and soda.  He would put his sandwich on his monitor (we used to have big CRT monitors) to warm it up.  He would continue to work until exactly 11:00.  Then he would proceed to eat his sandwich, drink his soda and then go and take a walk.  While he was out walking, I would proceed to rearrange everything on his desk and he would come back and take a nap from 11:30 until 12:00.  At exactly 12:00 he would wake up (with no alarm...I would guess he was just resting his eyes and not really sleeping) and put all of his desk articles exactly where they belonged before I rearranged them and go back to work until 2:00 when he would come back into my office and chat with me for 15 minutes.  Then at precisely 2:15, he would go back to work and work until 4:00 when he would leave for the day. 

We worked together like this for about a year and then he decided to move back to California where he was originally from and eventually retire there.  Before  he left, he asked me if he could have this little silly toy that I kept on my desk (see...I've always had toys of some kind on my desk for people to play with).  It was a little girl on roller skates with braids in her hair and you could pull on the strings on her body and they were all rubbery.  He said he'd like to trade it for this helicopter that he had that I always liked to play with when I visited him.  (It plays 'Happy Days are Here Again' when you wind up the propellers.)  I told him that I didn't think it was a fair trade but he assured me that it was.  So we traded and I have always had it on display in my office.

Once, when I was sick with a cold, he walked in the Florida heat to the pharmacy to get me some cold medicine when I didn't have enough sick leave to take off and go home.  When we were all put into this huge room in cubicles, he fought management against them putting the copier near my cube so that I would have a quiet place to work.  I don't know if he is still alive or not but I am sure he is retired and enjoying life to the fullest.  It will always be the small acts of kindness that I remember from him. 

By Grace Alone -

- T

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Life Has an Easy Rhythm

Life has settled back into an easy rhythm. 

I remember now how to get ready for work and get there on time.  (Sounds like it should be easy but that was the hardest part of going back to work.)

I have balanced the grocery shopping, cooking, and having fun after work to an acceptable level.  Not so much Farmville anymore...priorities have shifted.    Sorry Farmville friends...I don't have unlimited time anymore to visit you everyday like I was.  I'll still try to get in there on the weekends though and fertilize your crops and check for eggs in your henhouse.  (grin)

Radiation treatments have become part of my daily life on Mondays thru Fridays (The doctor assures me that cancer doesn't grow on the weekends...HA!) and there is still no pain associated with those treatments.  I was worried about shoulder pain because my sister's friend had said that was the worst of it but I am having no problems with that.  I am probably laying with my arm over my head for a maximum of five minutes so it really isn't a big deal.  They only radiate for a total of 2 minutes.

I'm glad they got the chemo out of the way first.  I always do hard chores first and then work my way to the easier ones so they played right into the way that I would have planned it.  8-)

I actually have little stubbles of hair growing out of my head now so I feel great hope that I will eventually have my full head of hair back...8-)  Hope is such a wonderful thing.  I will be so glad to burn all these hats that I am currently wearing to cover my widdle bald head. 

My energy levels are even better now than they were before the cancer was discovered.  I can go and do anything I feel like doing now and I don't get winded or tired at all.  I can't remember when I felt this good last.  Now I just have to start fitting the treadmill into each day (somewhere).  If I could wake up an hour earlier in the morning, I could fit it on that end of the day but I already wake up at 5 in the morning...not sure my body would like 4:00.  I may have to wait on that until after the radiation treatments are over in 5 and a half weeks.

Tom and I are trying to decide what to do with our vacation time this year.  In June, I'll reach my max vacation that I can store away so I'll need to start taking some then (because I lose it if I don't use it) but I'm not sure I'll have hair that is acceptable by then.   It has been 6 weeks since the last chemo and I only have stubble...maybe it will start picking up the pace now that the follicles are healing.  We would like to go up and see Tom's sister, maybe see BJ for a bit, and I'd also like to see my Mom and Sister but all of them live in three distant areas of the US so we can't do all of them in one trip.  We'll have to make that decision in the next few months. 

Here is a little Max for today.  It is so good to know that God is unchanging, uncaused, and ungoverned.  Knowing that he is in control of things just lets me rest easy without worry.

"An Ungoverned God

By Max Lucado

“God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.” I John 3:20

You and I are governed. The weather determines what we wear. The terrain tells us how to travel . . .

God—our Shepherd—doesn’t check the weather; He makes it. He doesn’t defy gravity; He created it.

God is what He is. What He has always been. God is Yahweh—an unchanging God, an uncaused God, and an ungoverned God."

By Grace Alone -

- T

Monday, February 21, 2011

Back at Work

As I've said...I'm back at work.  I thought you might like to see my office.  Unfortunately, it will be pictures of pieces of my office since I can't seem to get it all into one picture.  It isn't as neat and uncluttered as my home office.  Things are a lot more frantic here and it seems that organizing always gets shoved to the bottom of the pile of things to do...HA!

These are things that remind me of others and they give fidgety people something to play with when they're sitting in my office.  Toys are important.  8-)

This is where I sit and work all day long when I'm in my office.

The rest of my desk....You can see my brain under the hutch (all those little stickies to remind me of things).  That is a little space heater underneath my desk that I don't need so much right now due to very good internal heating going on.  8-)

Just another view of my desk....blah blah blah...

The bookcase I need to clean up.'ll recognise that "Teresa" plaque from the Greek Festival. 
Okay, I have to get back to work now...hope everyone is having a great day!

By Grace Alone -

- T

Sunday, February 20, 2011

God Hurts With You...

Life is getting back to normal.  Probably even better than normal.  8-)

We ventured out yesterday after all mundane things were taken care of at the house.  (Which, by the way, is NO LONGER MY PRISON...)  

We decided to go to the Bridgestreet Mall and see what Coldwater Creek had that was new.  I can always use new clothes...HA!  That was our original mission.  Funny how things never finish up the way you start them.  I love the Bridgestreet Mall because it isn't an indoor mall, it is all out doors, kind of like you would imagine a Mainstreet Shopping experience in the olden days might have been.  There is a place there for children to play in the water (yeah, there weren't any doing that yesterday...although, the temperature was in the 60's and was quite nice, still not nice enough for kids to be playing outside in water.)  There is actually a bridge on the street that runs over a flowing stream of water.  (Hence the naming of the Mall)  t really is done quite nicely.

Anyway...we went straight to CC and I found a new jacket and some sweaters and ordered some of the pants that I love so much.  Then we decided to go to P.F. Chang's to eat.  Tom loves oriental food and I like it pretty well too.   

But...on the way...we saw the Apple store and I thought Tom might enjoy stopping in there and browsing around so I asked him if he wanted to stop.  I could see the wheels in his little head turning and he said, "Sure!"  So we went in and started looking at the iPod Touches.  We already have iPads but the iPod Touches are really neat...they are actually thinner than the iPod Phone and would be much less bulk to carry around to the doctor's office than the iPad.  (There were lots of reasons to go in this direction beyond these but I won't bore you with ALL of it...)  We give ourselves an allowance every week and neither one of us had touched it in months and we thought this might be a fun celebratory gift for being done with chemo.  (Yeah, whatever rationalization works for a new toy, right?)  So we spent about an hour and a half in that store getting the iPods and all the accessories.  We also bought a new mail system for them so that we can synchronize all our mail between our PCs and our iPods.  That has been quite an issue with the iPads because if you delete your mail on your PC, then it still exists on the iPad and that is one of my major gripes with the mail program.  They could do a lot of things better with the mail program on the iPad. 

So, after that, we moved on to P.F. Chang's and had what we both thought was kind of a disappointing meal.  I would have just thought it was my taste buds post chemo but Tom said he was disappointed also.  We decided we wouldn't eat there again in the future.  (Hopefully, we'll remember that next time we think we want to eat there...HA)

By the time we got home, about 5 hours after our trip out began, I wasn't even tired.  It is REALLY good to do fun things again and still feel human after they are finished.  8-)  

Here is a picture of Tom taken with my has really good resolution.  I took some pictures of moving cars and they were clear as a bell too.

My Honey!
Here is the Max for today...this truth reaches all levels of my heart.  8-)   Through all that I have suffered, God has been right there hurting with me and carrying me through it.

"He’s Here

“The moment I called out, you stepped in; you made my life large with strength.”  Psalm 138:3, The Message 

Where is God when we hurt? Where is he when sleep won’t come? Where is he when we awaken in a hospital bed with pain that won’t subside? He’s right here! He hung on the gallows to prove once and for all, with pierced hands and blood-stained face—that he’s here—that he didn’t create the hurt, but he came to take it away.  When you hurt, God hurts with you."

By Grace Alone -

- T