The Gang's All Here!

The Gang's All Here!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Sunshine and Rain

Not too much to report here, which I guess is a good thing. I'm up to my ears in puppy and toddler insanity. The constant rain may be the straw that officially breaks this camel's back. If I even hear ONE word about a drought here in the near future I'm going to to require said person to spend the morning mopping my floors from the constant onslaught of mud and debris. It's never ending! I thought Murphy had made big improvements to her housebreaking until I noticed the floor underneath our foam mat in the playroom was wet. Pulled it up and oh yeah, wood floor was soaked. So, up came the mat (in a fit of rage - at myself mostly for not realizing what she'd been up to for the past day(s).). Sigh, it's always something, isn't it? I broke out the Bona floor cleaner and the floors appear to endure the worst of it...we shall see.

In some (relatively speaking) exciting news, we're having our windows replaced in the sunroom (playroom) next week. We've known since we bought the house that the windows needed to be replaced but, as you might imagine, windows don't come cheap. I should also mention that we have 48 windows in our house, so unless one of us robs a bank or starts selling drugs, we'll have to replace the windows in stages. The sunroom is first because it's drafty and the windows actively leak when it's raining. We discovered this little gem on Christmas night when it was monsooning and water was pouring in through the glass. Oh yes, that was all kinds of awesome. Especially when said water was pouring in over the electrical outlet that the Christmas tree was plugged into. I'm telling you, our life - the crazy just keeps on coming.

I am so excited that February is almost over. It's never been my favorite month and I'm so anxious for spring and warmer weather to be here. I think I might have that seasonal disorder - I crave sunlight and warmth! I was happy to see on the calendar that the time change is in less than two weeks, woohoo!! I love when it stays light later - bring on summer!

So, that's about it. I wish I had more to share that's worth writing about. Simon has figured out how to climb (found him climbing up our built in bookshelves yesterday). I know it's only a matter of time before he figures out how to get out of the crib... I found Stella pulling all of her clothes out of her dresser trying to "find a decent outfit". You know my OCD self was horrified staring at my perfectly folded and organzied drawers strewn about the room like a clearance sale at Nordstrom. Is it beer-thrity yet??????

Monday, February 18, 2013

Keep Calm and Herceptin On

I met with my oncologist on Friday to go over the results from the scans I had done recently. All in all, they were good. There are some areas of "interest" but not necesarily concern. Most notably, my skin has shown some changes. My oncologist is confident that this is (yet another) side effect from radiation. Considering how badly I burned at the conclusion of radiation (crispy is the best word I can come up with to describe that little experience), this news is not surprising. However, given that I have IBC and it's main pathway is via the skin, she is going to be keeping an extra close eye on me for a while. Oh great, just what I was hoping for!

So, Friday was supposed to be my final Herceptin treatment. Protocol (for IBC, Her 2 + cancer) is typically chemo and one full year of Herceptin. You know where this is going, right? My oncologist feels like taking me off of the Herceptin right now is asking for trouble. She wants me to stay on it for the "forseeable" future and basically use it as an insurance policy. We'll redo the PET scan in a couple of months to make sure my skin is behaving as it should.While I am bummed to not be finished with my treatments, I do understand and agree with her recommendation. Going cold turkey scares the bazingas out of me. Being that my cancer is Her 2 + and not hormone receptor positive (ER or PR), I cannot take any of the maintenence drugs that are commonly prescribed after treatements are completed. In my case, Herceptin is the force field (yeah sci fi nerds!) keeping my cancer at bay.

I was so hoping to be able to share the exciting news that I'm completely done with treatments and on my way to Tahiti. Alas, the news is certainly not bad, I don't currently have cancer. I just don't get to leave the chemo lounge yet. I'm working on keeping my chin up and celebrating my victories, of which there have been many. Still, it really stings to know this journey isn't over. Oh well, live to fight another day, right? I can't really complain, I don't have any side effects from the Herceptin (other than having terrible nails - seriously, Simon's nails look better than mine). My hair is growing just fine while on Herceptin. In fact, my oncologist thinks I need to put green or blue streaks in it, because according to her, I can pull off the "punk" look. I'm not sure that was a compliment? Anyhow, back to the grind. "Keep Calm and Herceptin On"...

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Puppy Love

So...Steve and I did something a little (a lot) crazy. We adopted a 7 week old yellow lab puppy. Before you even go there, we're know we're completely insane, but we did it anyway. And, we're totally, head over heels in love with her. We named her Murphy and the name seems to suit her. She's a little butterball full of kisses and nips. Wow, forgot how much puppies like to nip. Murphy is giving Willie complete hell (which is Karma in it's most pure form!) and he's exhausted. She's wonderful with the kids and they love her right back. Simon's only sat on her a few times and Stella thinks she's a doll and constantly refers to her as "Willie's friend".

All that to say, we're so excited to welcome Murphy into our family. We decided to continue on with the Irish-themed name as a tribute to Shamrock. I felt a little guilty, almost like we were replacing Sham with this puppy. Then I realized that there's no way we could ever replace Sham (she was just too much of a special dog and companion to ever be forgotten) and she'll always have a very special place in our hearts. She would absolutely love Murphy and I take great comfort in that.

I will be honest and say that adding Murphy into our lives is kicking my ass. Holy cow puppies are so much work!! I knew it was going to take up a good deal of time, but I guess I had forgotten that puppies have to go out...all.the.time. Murphy is really good about going potty once she's outside, but I have to vigilant about it. That would be all well and good if I didn't already have two toddlers destroying my house. Why not add a puppy who chews on every blasted thing into the mix??? And throw in a neurotic, OCD chocolate lab just for fun. Really, I know I've brought it all on myself, I guess I felt like I needed a new challenge. Kidding, here's to hoping that everyone (with the exception of Simon) in this house is potty trained before the end of the month. My sanity depends on it. Cheers!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Chitter Chatter

I had my final round of tests on Monday. The last test was a bone scan which I had not had done previously. It was actually quite enjoyable (I'm being honest!) and certainly easier than an MRI or even the PET scan. The only complaint is that it's time consuming (over 3 hours, you have an injection and then come back 3 hours later for the scan). The bone scan was nice because the scan tech actually stays in the room, so I had someone to talk to. He was friendly and entertaining, so the 35 minute scan went by quickly. I was also allowed to move my head which was great; in the other types of scans you can barely breathe!

Ironically (or maybe not), I'm getting to know some of the scan techs quite well. My hospital recently went through a huge merger/ acquisition (they are sucking up places left and right) and it's become a regional cancer center. Anyway, they've been advertising like crazy on TV and I have seen the commercial(s) a bunch of times. One of the commercials features the PET scan technology and I thought that I'd recognized Chris (one of the PET scan techs). Yup, it was definitely him on TV! It's also interesting to be able to converse with said techs regarding testing etc, I know so much of the lingo now and they seem to like that I take an interest. Signs that you're spending too much time in the medical industry... ;).

I won't have any of my results until February 15th, when I see my oncologist. Yes, it's a long time to wait, but frankly, I don't have time to stress about it. The kids are taking 100% (realistically, 256%) of my time. Simon is EVERYWHERE. He's like a little mobile wrecking ball. He's quite happy these days, I'm assuming mainly because he can get into all kinds of trouble now. Simon is also very loud. He "talks" at top volume and regularly cracks himself (and us) up. Luckily, most people we encounter find him "charming" and "entertaining" (thank you to the kind folks sitting around us at Chili's last night- Simon had LOTS to share with the enitre restaurant. At least he was happy, right?). I had been agonizing over the last few weeks as to whehter or not to sign him up for preschool next year. In the end, I decided that he would probably love it and the socialization would be good for him. He's certainly not a shy child...

Stella continues to amaze us with her rapidly expanding vocabulary and antics. I think the funniest part of her personality right now is her mixed use of southern accent and Brittish prep school pronunciations. Please, allow me to share. Here's a typical Stella phrase this week: "I can't (pronounced with a Brittish accent) go up the hill (said: heel) and peel my banana (also Brittish). I'm serious, it's hilarious. That, and the fact that she never stops talking. In case you are wondering, the Brittish accent comes from our nanny.I have no idea why my children are such chatterboxes...surely they don't come by it honestly?!?! ;)