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Fishing The Coast, Oregon and Washington

December
2010

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Picture by Pete Morris

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Madeleine
Morris and Jennie at Christmas Party 2011!
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Happy December
1st!
Pizza
Tonight!
Don't forget!


Good morning! OHmygosh... I've been so busy and I remain so busy,
and besides that, I'm way behind! I feel like I'm chasing my tail, lately!

Gotta go to the dentist, then come back and put up Stan's column, and get out
the ifish stuff for the party, and get cards for the mods, and load the car
with toys (load the sleigh!) and go!

Gotta find the right banners (Where are they?) and, find name tags, and and
and... Yikes!
The party
is tonight!


Call your wife and tell her you all don't need to cook, tonight! It's party
night! Just go buy some toys!

I was up all night coughing. It's that phase where you feel better, but your
body is trying to expel all that sick from you, so that you can go on your merry
way. I'm glad I'm beating it, at least!

I went to get a wig, yesterday and had so much fun at this "Look Good Feel
Better" meeting. Lots of fun makeup and a wig! Wow! Never thunk I'd wear
a wig!

It's kinda cute, actually!

We decided not to cut my real hair, yet, as she said she doesn't think it's
"that" bad. OK! It does bug me, though. Hair, everywhere! Oh well...
we'll see how long I can take this. At least for tonight, I'll have real hair,
but look out, you guys! I shed!

Please remember that if you are with ifish, you get 20 percent off pizza at
Pietros! Just say the magic word, and if you have an ifish badge with a moniker,
you win 20 percent off!

Oh! Enter our "Guess
the toys
" contest, and win a prize from Okuma!

OK, gotta go to the dentist. I'm off!

Happy December
3rd


The party was excellent! For pictures,
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Click here!

I always get so frustrated, though, at these parties. I want to spend time with
everyone, and then I end up hopping around like scotch, and not getting to spend
any quality time with anyone!

There are even people I missed, all together!

And then, to top it off, I was SO excited about some almond roca that was given
to me, and my Dad was enjoying it so much, that I accidentally left it on the
table! I quick called them and they are saving the left overs for me! I can't
wait to go get it! And my friend, Ginny has the recipe! So, thank you for the
candy! I'm in wait! (and want!) NOW!

So, this morning I was vacuuming my hair... Yes. I vacuum my hair. It's now
coming out quite nicely, thank you.

It just grosses me out when it comes out in the shower, so I give it a good
brushing, first. But, then, it's like cleaning up after grooming Kilchis. I
end up having to vacuum the floor. So, why not skip a step? I just vacuum my
head! It works really well! I take a little hand held vacuum and go at it!

I should just shave it, but my beauty gal said that maybe... just maybe it won't
all come out and to wait and see for sure. At this rate, honey, it's all coming
out!!! I have a ton of hair, but there is another ton in the waste basket! What
a mess!

And now I have three wigs to wear. They are very sexy! And one of them is so
freaky! It looks so much like my own hair! The other two are donated and kinda
fun! I can't wait! That's a lie. I can totally wait! I don't want to go bald,
but I'm trying to make the best of it, so "I can't wait!"

I have been so busy trying to keep up with ifish! Man oh man! I do love ifish.
I do! I don't think I'll ever be able to leave. I'm stuck here. Like it or not!

So, we have a new contest up! Take a peek! Make some hot chocolate and get out
your coloring set! It's
Mag Lip time!


And by tonight, we'll be voting on the Kwikfish! Just look
at these entries!
Talk about fish killers! Springers, anyone? We are SO
near to that season! Do you even realize? Whoo hoooooo!

Merry December
5th


Ever wake up in a great mood, and then in no time at all, things
that happen (people that happen! LOL) change that around?

Bothers me.

I want to be in a good mood! I will! I will! I will be in a good mood! I seem
to naturally be in a good mood when I wake up. I love mornings! And I try, I
try, to keep it that way! But, by golly, it seems like some people just want
to turn that around for me. Well, I'm not going to let that happen! So, there!
I'm going to smile, regardless. Ha ha!

I'm going to leave the computer, now, and go put up Holiday decorations! Holiday
decorations can't ruin my good mood! They like me! LOL

Then, I'm going to take pictures of some Salty Dog Sweatshirts that I have,
and get rid of them on the Salty Dog board. Great big sweatshirts for great
big fishermen! My fav!

And all the while, I'm going to smile.

See if you can stop me!

And no, that's not a challenge.

I'd much rather you join me!

smilie.jpg

See? This is me!

Look, Ma! No hair, too!


Merry December
4th


The
Kwikfish Vote is on!


Please take a minute to click above and put in your vote! The
guys worked hard on their coloring projects, so let's pay some respect, here!!!
:)

Merry December
6th
Just goofing around
at the piano!

Merry Christmas! :) I can't wait to be sick with chemo so that
I can play the piano, again. It worries me a bit, because I'm having trouble
with things like Schubert, because my arm is really irritated due to the chemo
injection site. It hurts! I can't for sure, stretch it out, so octaves are difficult.
And- that's my usual forte. I mean, I have a great reach, and... well, it's
kaput, now! I hope it gets better.

Well, I'm getting used to wearing a wig. I took my kitchen shears and cut off
my hair. It didn't even bother me. In fact, it was a relief. Who is in control,
here? ME, dangit! So, now I have to wear my wig. I went to see my hair gal and
she likes it! I nearly paid her for the compliment. That helped me so much to
hear it looks alright. I felt goofy in it, till then!

I received a poem in the mail from one of my breast cancer mentors and it really
made me smile! I don't know the author, though! Yikes! Anyway, if someone knows,
please send it along!

Tomorrow is chemo day. I need all the good chemo karma I can get! :)

ATTITUDE

There once was a woman who woke up one morning, looked in the mirror,
and noticed she had only three hairs on her head.


"Well," she said, "I think I'll braid my hair
today!"


So she did and she had a wonderful day.

The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror and saw that she had
only two hairs on her head.


"H-m-m," she said, "I think I'll part my hair
down the middle today."


So she did and she had a grand day.

The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror, and noticed that she
had only one hair on her head.


"Well," she said, "today I'm going to wear
my hair in a ponytail."


So she did and she had a fun, fun day.

The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror, and noticed that there
wasn't a single hair on her head.


"YEA!" she exclaimed, "I don't have to fix
my hair today!"


Attitude is everything!

Merry December
8th


What's it like to do chemo?

Well, you know? I'll tell ya. I always wondered myself, and now I have that
experience.

Wow. I'm lucky! I get to do so many things! And I'm not kidding, either. I do
like a well rounded life. Now I've had cancer, too. I get to do it all! It's
good to have both ups and downs, so that you can appreciate the ups even more!

(Notice the past tense? I consider myself a survivor, already!)

So, yesterday was my chemo day.

I've lost nearly all my hair, now. And I mean... e v e r y w h e r e!

I nearly made a sign and jokingly posted it on the outside of the entrance to
the chemo shop. I thought it was funny, but you guys, (warning)
some of you may not. But, I've learned to laugh at things that are the most
morbid, when things are gray. I have had to! So, my gift of the sign was going
to say:

FREE
BRAZZILLIONS

With office visit!

Pain free!

For those of you who have no clue, (Like I didn't, just months
ago) A brazzilion is where they wax off even your, um... personal hair.. eh
hem, down there.

Sometimes I get my legs waxed, and I, having had no clue, asked my wax lady
what in the heck a "brazzillion" was, when I saw it on the price menu.
I was shocked! Why in the world???

So, anyhow, yes. That hair goes, too, with chemo! Yikes! Why would anyone want
that on purpose?? I don't know, but it's a fad, right now!

Whatever happened to pet rocks?

My doctor laughed when she heard about my sign. I was so relieved! LOL

So, people on chemo (me) are right in with the fad, it seems! I'm stylin'!

Yesterday, I rounded up all my hair products, hair sprays, gels, shampoos, conditioners,
all my razors and put them away for the duration. No more hair dryers or curling
irons or flat irons! What's a girl to do? Wear a wig!

That was kind of freeing! No more shampoo! No more shaving! Cool! Showers will
be long, but not busy! My bathroom drawers are clean!

So, I walk into the doc office, yesterday morning early, and they first checked
my blood levels. I checked out fine. So, then, it's off to visit with the doctor.
My doctor is just awesome. Dr. Webster. She is a two time breast cancer survivor.
Here's
a story on her.
She's battled hell, and come out closer to Heaven-- and
I feel I have that in common with her. I actually don't know her religious preference,
but she is filled with joy!

She also is a great research person on the new parp inhibitors for triple negatives.
Listen
to her lecture, here.
I am especially interested in this, as this is what
very well could save my life, down the road. However, it would have to be approved
by the FDA, because with marfan and all, I'm not eligible for any test groups.

Anyhow... So, Dr. Webster talked to me about my side effects last time, and
approved me for my second round. (I'm half done!)

I went upstairs to the "chemo suites" and found a nice comfy room.
They hooked me up with my IV and started to pump first steroids, then Benedryl,
then Cytoxin and then Taxotere? I think? But, in between those they gave me
a little Ativan, due to nausea. That made me sleepy!

After three hours, I was done, and went home!

I've been a bit sick since then, but nothing that isn't do-able. You know? I
mean, so far, nothing worse, but a little comparable to a slight flu.

Today I'll get a Neulasta shot that will help bring my white blood cell back
up. Now, this makes my bones ache quite a bit, so I'll be in a bed for a couple
days, most likely.

I think I'll get out my Christmas bulbs (the clear ones) and do a little crafts,
or perhaps have my laptop in bed, and try to get some ifishing done.

I'm OK with it all, you guys. Chemo isn't that bad.

I had fun wearing my wig, yesterday, and enjoying comments on it. It matches
so well and looks quite a bit like the old me. I'll take a picture of me with
it, sometime this week. You'll see!

It's so much nicer after the shock of hearing you have cancer, to have a plan.
Once you have a plan of attack, things seem to just chug along and I think I'll
be done with this, before I know it!

Never have I been more excited for springer season. Cuz, you know what? I'll
be done by then!

Giggle!

And you know what? I thank my Heavenly Father for each and every morning I wake
up. Each moment is special. Each commonly small disaster in life is less important
and less depressing... as long as I'm here, as long as I'm breathing, there
is good.

Praise God!

...and I can't believe I wrote what I did, up there. It might get taken down
once I fully realize my overly candid sharing! You know, "report regret!"

Merry December
9th


Oh, what a difference a day makes!

Talk about a slam dunk! That great big hand of fate came down on me all at once,
and slammed my "feel good" right into the basket!

It happened right after my Neulasta shot. I was supposed to take a Claritin
in the morning, the day before, and one the day of. Well, leave it to me to
be lazy and put it off. I finally bought some as I filled a prescription for
antibiotics after my Neulasta shot.

While at the doctors for the shot, they told me I had a fever, and to really
watch that.

I didn't know I had a fever!

So, I went home and sure enough, the chills started, and then the heat, and
then the total slam dunk. I was out for the count. I wasn't making dinner! In
fact, I was telling Andrew I'd not like the steak I'd gotten out, but please
send up some chix noodle soup and a PBJ. My favorite sick food!

I was staying in bed!

And now the mouth peeling starts, and my fingernails hurt, again.

I lay there, trying to read a contract a mile long, and instead, watching a
dozen reruns of "Storm Chasers", dozing in and out, all the while.

I have a bad cough.

This morning I feel so weak, but my fever has broken. That's good news! I think
it did, anyhow. I have that weak, cold feeling.

Man, but did that hit me! Or something hit me! A car?

And so now I wait and pull myself out of this hole. I know that it's going to
get better until my next chemo. Right?

At least I don't have anything huge on my plate. Well, except Christmas, and
I have not ONE... not ONE Christmas present purchased! I don't know what to
do, there!

I hope that I get the 'zip back in my doo dah' soon, so that I can get out there
and play Santa, too!

There MUST be stockings hung by the fire with care! We are hoping that St. Nick
will soon be there!

Speaking of.... I was sent this wonderful piece on Mr. Stan Fagerstrom and I
was so taken by it! Meet
Don Barone
who was touched by the presence of Stan Fagerstrom, just as we
all are!

What is it about some folks that just stir up the magic in life?
Read
here!


Merry December
10th


I think I'm going to live, after all.

Merry December
13th
Jenniechemohair.jpg


Me with chemo hair! I cut it with the kitchen scissors because I was
tired of cleaning it up. It's very thin, but so far, I still have a little!
Just lots of bald spots! You have to cover them like some men do, with a side
part!
jenniechemohair1.jpg
and....

springer_fevera.jpg


The winner of the Kwikfish Contest!


Ifish member Pickles!

With "Springer-Fever"


Thank God! Today is the day. I finally feel like I'm over the
hump and going to feel better until the next chemo. I'm halfway done!

You can't really consider yourself halfway done until after the lousy feelings
from chemo.

I have two more chemo dates and then I'm all done. Well, after the lousy feelings.
December 28th and January 18th. By show time, (Sportsman Show) I should be feeling
alright, and celebrating! Then, I do 5 weeks of radiation and I'm done! They
may even shorten my radiation, as I have marfan and people with marfan don't
take as well to radiation as others. I'm not sure how they'll handle that, but
I do have to talk with them about it as a consideration.

I'll tell you, this time was way worse than the first chemo. One day I just
lay in bed and cry. All day long! I cried! I called my sisters and cried. I
called my brother and cried. What a wimp! I hurt all over. My emotions were
a mess. It doesn't only take you over physically, but mentally, too! I just
didn't want to be here!

It scared me! I thought, "Wow. If the first one wasn't so bad, and the
second one this bad, will the third and fourth be as bad?" I don't know!

I'm so lucky to be loved, though. My sister drove all the way in a terrible
storm to deliver an excellent dinner, yesterday! Chicken with lime and curry
and green olives. Rice with, I don't know what, but so good! And green beans
with... I don't know what, but so good! And then this awesome salad with great
greens, orange slices, nuts, goat cheese, and just yum! Plus, she made me a
Christmas wreath with fishes in it! It is so cute! I will take a picture, later!

Speaking of pictures... I promised one of me in a wig. Thing is, I don't know
how to take a picture of me! I'll try. I can't wait to go on a walk with my
iphone, and go look at the full and lush river!

The storm here was so dark and ominous! It was a great couple days just to stay
in bed and watch the outside.

Now, it's still and warm out, and the river is at bankfull. I'll put on my boots
and slosh out there. There is nothing better than the Pacific Northwest the
way it is supposed to be, in winter time. Warm, lush, wet, and full!

To feel no movement in the air after all the push and pull of the wind is exciting
and new. The light is barely coming up, right now. I can't wait to see the changes
the storm has made. The rearrangement of God's furniture, both by river and
by wind.

I only hope my iphone has batteries, this morning. That way, I can take a Youtube
of the river, and flash in on me, too, so you can see me bald to thinning, and
then see me with a wig, too! I'm not shy! I'll show you what chemo can do! LOL

OK. I'm off with taking a video of the water saturated Kilchis Canyon. The water
came up higher than it has in two years! It took away all my two year old maple
leaves! Pix of me in my wig, to come!

Oh, yeah! And the Kwikfish winner will be announced, today!

Merry December
14th


OK, it's time to post me in a wig! I like it, because it looks
like me. Honest to God, unless people are very kind, they are saying that they
didn't even know. Especially, if they didn't know I had cancer. But, my post
office angel was looking at me getting out of my car and said, "OK... I
thought she said she was losing her hair!" So, here I am!

jenniewiga.jpg


Time to write Christmas Cards!

jenniewig1.jpg


You can click for bigger images.


So, what do you think? Is it alright? I wouldn't mind wearing
it all the time, but they say that they fringe out at the bottom, where it rubs
against your shoulders, so not to expect it to last long. I get a kick out of
the fact it's made of monofilament! I couldn't afford the "real" hair
option... and besides, these stay styled! You don't have to do anything but
put it on, comb it thru, and go!

I'm kind of getting used to this! Lazy!

I crack up at Bill's new thing. I guess I complain a lot when I don't feel well,
because his new utterance when I complain about feeling yucky is, "Pity,
pity, pity..."

It cracks me up!

Now, do I look like pity? No! I'm happy!

Merry December
16th


Trying not to be miserable, but I just am. Still smiling, still
laughing about it, but miserable!

I can barely walk and I can't button my shirts, play the piano, or type very
well. But, nonetheless, I'm doing it! I refuse to let this take over.

I have been diagnosed with (I keep giggling because I keep thinking it's hoof
and mouth) Hand
and foot syndrome, or Palmar-Plantar Erythrodysesthesia.
Isn't that a cool
word? How do you say it? Erythro dysesth esia?
Note the symptoms: Severe pain. UH HUH! It's like I dipped
my hands and feet in acid. I have these lesion like wounds all over, and my
middle knuckles are all swollen and bright red. They are now blistering and
breaking open. Yuck!

And wheelchairs just don't cut it out on the river and I want to fish! I'm going
to hobble out there, anyhow, darn it. Put ice in my boots and go!

Have I told you how good cold feels? Oh my gosh! I went to town in the car,
yesterday and the steering wheel was so cold! It was wonderful! I caressed it,
held it, squeezed it! Giggle. And then, it got warm. I have heard of warmed
steering wheels. How bout cold ones? Please?!

So, after I discovered the ice remedy, I grabbed two bags of frozen peas, and
took them upstairs to bed. I lay them on a pillow, took off my socks and ah....!
Wonderful! My feet felt GOOD for the first time in a couple days!

And here I thought I was breaking thru the yuckies of chemo. Just as I was losing
the nausea and the lack of energy, this happened!

I guess it happens when you get too much chemo, or when the chemo breaks thru
the small vessels and enters the fatty tissues of your hand and feet and burns
the heck out of them! I mean it! They are fried! They look awful!

And last night I tried to take a bath. WRONG! Sheesh! I jumped out of that tub
so quickly! My feet weren't so bad, but my hands just couldn't take even warm
water! They sizzled!

How did this happen? Well, the other day my feet mysteriously hurt, so I went
to lay down, take a load off, and decided to give myself a manicure. I just
thought my feet were achy from, who knows what.

It was then that I noticed little blisters all over my cuticles and fingers.
What the? By bedtime, my hands hurt so badly, and my feet weren't going to be
doing any walking. I was miserable and called my doc. She confirmed what I had,
and said we'd have to postpone or reduce my chemo, next time. I guess it happens
with taxanes. (chemo medication I'm on.)

Yep. I was sicker than the first time. Way sicker! My mouth is like molting
for the third time. It, too, is like a bad burn. And then you can't tell if
something is overly salty, or overly hot, so you re injure yourself!

The thing that bothered me is this. When talking to my doc, I said that if this
is the way it's going to be, I can't do it again. (What a spoiled brat.)

And she was so nice, that it made me feel really guilty. She said, "We
aren't going to make you do go thru this again." Meaning, that she would
reduce the dose.

I said, "Wait! I'm so sorry to come across like this. You aren't making
me do anything! I am doing this to get well. It is my choice." and I apologized.

Here she is, doing all she can to heal me from cancer, and she thinks I feel
that she is making me do this?! Argh. I felt awful. Of course she isn't going
to make me do anything. This is my choice. I chose chemo. She is trying to help
me. I have to remember that.

At the very least, tho, I'm glad I can laugh about it this new hoof and mouth
affliction I have. :)

OK. Ice my boots, and off I go. I'm going to fish, darnit, come heck or iced
peas.

Oh, no. I just thought about how the cork might feel in my hands? I'm supposed
to avoid any friction. Like, if I have to fight a
fish? The inside of my palms are the owiest, right now. Oh well, I'm going to
try it.

Giddeeup!

Merry December
17th


Just hear those reels a singing, a zing zing zingeling, too!

Come on, it's lovely weather for a steelhead together with you!

The river is perfect! The weather is cold! My fingers are freezing , but shall
I be bold?

Uh huh! I'm going back out!

You know, the river is a bit high, but not too bad. I find that if you find
a spot in the river where your bobber floats along about walking speed, that's
where you'll find your fish.

Of course, I've picked off a few in riffles or fast water, too, but more often,
as soon as I find a consistent path where my bobber moseys along about walking
speed, that's where the fish are.

Andante! They like that water, too! It's a good thing, because when it's cold
out, it is such a relief after you cast out, to be able to fish longer, slower
stretches and hide your hands in your pockets!

But, now that I think about it, is it because I'm actually "fishing"
longer, or is it because they are holding in the flat water? I mean, my jig
is actually out there for more time, when I'm fishing slower water.

I don't know what the truth is, or the reason, I guess, but fishing walking
tempo water gets me into more fish.

This morning I was out in the way cold, fishing. I came in, due to freezing
hands.

I have been sitting here warming up, catching up on ifish, and doing some legal
work.

I was warming up, nicely, but thinking, "What is that awful smell?"
I looked in the trash. I smelled the dogs. Nope. Can't find it.

I was about ready to go out, so I was thinking, "Where is my bait? Where
is my rod?"

Eh hem.

I didn't have any fresh sand shrimp this morning, so I grabbed a container of
D&G's frozen shrimp out of the freezer. I had no where to put them, as the
container was too big, so I simply stuffed them down my coat.

Well, guess what? I stink.

They are still down my coat, but now nicely warmed.

SHEESH.

Jennie, girl? You stink!

Just not right for a girl. Just not right.

And here I'm such a pretty thing, too. .

Merry December
18th


Holy Moly Lightning, Bat girl! I am LUCKY!

I was sitting here at the front window, doing computer work during a lightning
storm. (Yeah, I'm not so smart, but how often does lightning....)

BAM! hit?
Sheesh louishe!

I couldn't believe it! Pretty lightning lit up the sky and just as I glanced
up, the window sill? The long steel wire that holds up my bird feeder outside
my window? Something zzzz like when you hook up a car battery wrong?! Like a
foot from my hand! I felt it!

I jumped up... There had been this ball of fire about the size of a baseball
that kind of rolled in the window, as it happened. So bizarre! Never seen anything
like this!

I have Christmas lights on my monitor, plugged into my USB port, and they got
blown off and behind the monitor!

Yet-- everything seems fine! Including me! I am so lucky!

You know, it goes to show. Here I have cancer. Here I've had an aortic dissection.
All of those things could have killed me, and you'd think they might. But, lightning?
You never think you'll go that way! But, I could have! All this fight against
cancer, and all the yucky things you go thru, and focus on, totally, and yet
your life can be taken by lightning, or getting hit by a truck, or falling on
the river!

You just never know when it's your time to go! So, if there is a lesson in this,
I guess we shouldn't focus on any one thing. Don't be worrying about a cancer
diagnosis. Just live your life, because you never know which day it is that
our Heavenly Father is going to beam you up!

Thank you, Lord, for this day! I'm going to make the very most of it, since
you allowed me to make it thru that zap! Holy Moly I'm still in shock! (Literally!)

Merry December
22nd


Yikessssss! I don't even want to look at the date, let alone post
it, here! Oh, my, but Christmas is soon!

I've told my kids over and over that Christmas won't be quite the same, this
year.

They keep saying, "That's what you always say, Mum." But-- but-- REALLY!

You know, they are old enough to understand, right? WRONG! I'm not old enough
to understand! Santa MUST bring stockings! There MUST be presents! I pride myself
on picking the most thoughtful things out... except for this year!

I raised my kids to be kids at heart, forever and ever, amen!

(Yeah, yeah, I get it... don't put that back in my face, please!) But, it's
true! Christmas has to happen and there is protocol, to be followed!

There must be sweet petals. (My Mom's cinnamon rolls) There must be stockings
hung by the chimney with care, and they must have things in them that make people
go "oooh" and "ahhh!". There must be a wonderful dinner.
There must be wrapped presents under the tree! I don't care if there is anything
in them! It just has to look festive!

Maybe I'll just scrunch up some wrapping paper and throw it under the tree.
That way we can pretend we already opened presents!

Argh. Santa? Oh, great Santa in the sky? I need help!

Just like a woman once told me that she prays before shoe shopping, I am going
to pray, today that I can get everything done despite the fact that I don't
feel well and I have a doctor's appointment, today!

I went to Portland for two days, thinking I could get it all done. Ha! Joke!
In between, I had a meeting, and then I only have so many hours in the day that
I can drive. And then I had a family emergency. And then I got sick.

I did search the world over for one gift I couldn't find, anywhere. 'Sold out'
were the two saddest words! I went to maybe 10 stores to find something and
failed! Oh, Portland! You failed me!

So Santa didn't do well as Santa at all!

OK, I'm off to the races. Chemo or no chemo, sick or no, I must have stockings
full of wonderment!

It reminds me so much of the stubborn girl I was, when I got out of the hospital
with my aortic surgery six years ago. It was really near Christmas. (Days before,
I believe) and it was in me that we had to have a perfect Christmas dinner.

So, there I was, weak as all get out, slumped over in my wheelchair with a cutting
board in my lap, in the kitchen. I was trying so hard to prepare a beautiful
Christmas dinner. Ever peeled potatoes, sitting in a wheelchair? Ha! If only
I would have just said, "Go get turkey TV dinners" it would have been
so much better! Instead, I ended up in tears in that chair, yelling at the kids
to help, and... Well... Maybe there is a lesson to be learned from that memory.

Do they make pre made stockings, somewhere? :)

Off I go. Even if they did, we are past the shipping date!

Merry December
27th


We had a beautiful Christmas with my extended family in Portland.
What a blessing it was!
Here's a peek at our family
dinner.


I have such an awesome family! Before dinner, we all held hands (about 30 of
us!) and my niece, Jamie, said the most wonderful prayer! The prayer was so
incredibly touching that half of us, (mostly the girls) had to leave the table
to go fix our eye makeup. (Yes, it was that touching!) We all left, half sobbing
and half giggling that we all had to visit the powder room!

My Dad was able to attend, and what a blessing that was!

You know, Christmas morning was so hectic! In fact, all of Christmas seemed
hectic this year.

With chemo, everything is an extra effort. I have this just bone tired feeling,
and a head that doesn't work right! I swear, I have to think twice as hard for
everything. The question always is, "What am I doing?" LOL.

Efficient, I'm not. Even Christmas shopping was incredibly difficult. I'd get
to a store and think, "What am I doing? Is my wig on right? Can I make
it up those stairs?" Everything. Everything requires extra thinking and
extra energy! I'm fairly relieved it's over!

I got up Christmas morning about 6:30 AM and said to Bill, "You know we
have to leave by 11?!" He said he was alright with that. Well, I wasn't!

I had breakfast to make, stockings still to stuff. (I mean, Santa had stockings
to stuff, anyhow...) and even Christmas morning I was still finishing up with
present wrapping!

Then, the normal dog walking and showers... all in that little time?

It was just hectic! And I kept losing things, and Andrew hadn't made the smoked
salmon dip yet, and I couldn't figure out which dishes to use to display the
appetizers on, and well? It was crazy!

We finally got in the car and left by 11:30 AM and we were only 10 minutes late
for the gift exchange!

On the way there, the boys did their usual, "Do we really want to go?"

Yes. We are going! There was no doubt!

And by the time dinner was over, everyone was so glad we went! Our family is
magical and I thank God for everyone in it!

I magically had energy that day and I don't know where it came from! People
even noticed that I seemed very healthy and well! They said, "You don't
seem sick!?!" I didn't feel sick!

I was blessed on Christmas Day with energy! It was the best present I could
have asked for!

And in the gift exchange, I opened a present with gloves in it, with fingers
long enough to fit my phalanges! That's rare! I so hoped no one would steal
my present, and no one did! I love them and I wore them out on the river, yesterday!
(Note my short wig!)

I had the best Christmas in the world, and I just really thank God! I hope that
you did, too!

The only thing I missed, and I was so sad about this, was taking time out to
go visit Bill's brother and wife. But, there just wasn't time. Bill was able
to go yesterday, but I was so tired, I just couldn't imagine going to Portland
on Christmas, the day after, and then again tomorrow, for chemo. (Yes, they
are infusing me with more chemo tomorrow, and then one more time and I'm done!)

One of these years we must spend all of Christmas with Bill's side of the family!
I would love that! But, this year, I'm so glad we did what we did, even though
I missed seeing Bill's brother and family. It was an important year for my family.

I will try to keep up with this more often, now that the Christmas crazies are
over!

Merry December
30th


Stan's column is up! I love stories
about Bruce. :)

sfbhbarredpeacocka.jpg

Bruce Holt has fished extensively all over the world. Here he is pictured
with a beautiful peacock bass.


I'm also becoming excited about Peacock bass fishing. Dudley Nelson
is going to be doing a bit of that, soon, so we are hearing more and more about
it. Stan has always talked about it. Look
in the archives!
Read up!

I wonder, though, if like other bass, they fight a bit at the first, and then
roll in like a log? LOL. Sorry. Had to ask?

There is just something about the continuous whirl, twirl, and cutting wake
fan blade spins of a steelhead that tickle my fancy!

Chemo was two days ago, and I'm still upright. What's the deal with this? Usually
I'm sicker than a dog. I'm not complaining! They reduced my dose by 15 percent,
and I'm liking this, so far! I can still live! I may even go for a walk, today!
Or... heaven forbid, fish? Is the river in shape? I saw two boats go up to the
park. It must be fishable!

I woke up to a bit of stress, this morning, but a few prayers later, and I'm
doing alright. Something must be wrong, here. Usually chemo has me down a bit,
both physically and mentally, but this time? I'm balanced.
Like, more than balanced. Thank you, dear Lord!

And, to boot, the sun is shining and the sky is bright blue! Not even that sickly
blue that reminds me of surgeries in the winter! Wow!

Are you ready for the New Year? Just one more chemo treatment for me, and I
am MORE than ready!

Oh! I have had more fun with my chickadees, this year. They are becoming fast
friends. I gave them a scoop of peanut butter in their seeds, and they just
adore it! It's never been busier! They get it on their little feety and have
to stomp it off, right in front of me! Giggle! I love them so much! ...my little
chickadee!

Happy New
Year's Eve!


The poison hits so hard, so fast! And there is no denying it!
THIS is chemo. This is killing cells. This is trying to kill off part of me,
and it's working!

It started when I tried to go for a walk. Every step home was a challenge.

Then, I went upstairs and tried to vacuum. I was out of breath and I coulda
sworn the nice vacuum that Bill bought us wasn't the same one. Some cheapo thing
that feels like I'm pushing a beached whale across the rug.

And that was it. No, not quite. I still tried. I went to the post office, and
was (ha!) relieved I didn't have any mail to pick up! It would have been much
too heavy, I'm sure.

I slogged into the door... kinda like that old man on Carol Burnett? Remember
him? The one that took the tiny little steps? Yep. That's me on chemo.

So, Andrew says, "Can I help you?" I think I'm beyond help. "Chicken
soup?" He knows the drill, now. Yep. Chicken soup.

That makes me feel loved. Always has. That's my 'sick' food ever since I was
a small child, and my Mom would bring it to me. Chix soup and a lightly peanut
buttered and jellied sandwich on white bread. Comfort.

I was freezing and nothing in the world was better than chicken soup and my
wonderful Costco furry throw, --and my USIA warmies. My "sick" warmies.
(I did not eat them, though! I wore them! LOL

I used to wear them for fishing, but lately, they are my sick clothes. When
I'm cold. When I'm on chemo. When I eat chix soup, and lay in bed, helpless.

And that is where I stayed. I thanked God for Andrew over and over, yesterday.
I thanked him to everyone who would listen. He was so sweet, bringing me chix
soup and then iced drinks with lots of ice, and then something hot, again. Even
a bowl of potato chips, just in case. (They still sit by my bed, though!) Potato
chips aren't much good for a girl who is molting the skin in her mouth. Ouch!
But, still, he's sweet, and I do thank God for him. I knew there was a reason
he had to live here, while unemployed. He's a blessing to me, for sure.

David is sick, again, and that worries me. Not only for he, but for me. I have
no resistance against his illness. Give me that cold, David! I'll take it, and
I don't even want it!

My Motherly instinct of wanting to care for him has been lost on my own selfish
needs. Andrew was running, yesterday, serving us all. Thank God for Andrew!
Did I say that?

Bill cooked a wonderful piece of salmon for dinner. Springer, with bbq sauce,
and pineapple. So, so good! Thank God for Bill!

I love my family.

I stayed in bed for a long time, dozing in and out, hot, then cold, and had
terrible cramping in my feet and legs. I woke at 2 in the morning, and tried,
(without any luck) to have a conversation with Bill. I was lonely! He wanted
to sleep. (Why sleep at 2 in the morning? LOL)

I stayed up, not able to sleep. I caught up on the mod board. Probably the steroids
that they give you with your chemo? I don't know... but about now, I'm wanting
to go do it all over again. Sleep, cold, hungry...

Andrew? Chix soup?
I want to wish you a Happy New Year's!

I really do! Stay in touch with those you love. You never know what may come.
Breast cancer, whatever... but give lots of hugs, thank God for your closest
friends and family, and let them know you thank God for them! Call folks you
haven't spoken to! And look forward to this coming year with all of the eagerness
and positive thoughts you can dream of! Gather all of the love in your heart
that you can muster and give it away freely!

This chemo shall pass. I have one more treatment... then either radiation, or
now, they want me to have a total mastectomy. What a decision... They think
the radiation may be too hard on me? I dunno. That's for later. Right now, all
I can muster are thoughts of chix soup. No decisions today, thanks.

Just thanks be to God.

Thank God for my family.

They can make me Chix soup. :)

Oh! And I'm excited, too. Tomorrow, I have an extra sweet petals I made up on
Christmas, just for New Years! I so hope I can manage to chew the nuts on top!

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