Friday, April 25, 2014

Spring showers

 This was the view from the driveway this morning when I picked up the newspaper. Our good neighbor's Grey and Rhiannon's horse farm after an overnight 1/2 inch shower. Gorgeous!

  Turning to my left, this view of our south pasture. I mowed yesterday. It sure hurts to mow off such beautiful pasture, but I know selling the herd was the right thing to do at this time.

  As I am still pretty limited as to what I can do (lack of strength and stamina, and occasional low blood pressure), Rita has been a trooper at the yard work. This area is rocky with thin soil, so she planted in these pots under the paper birch tree.

  This garden row is Walla Walla sweet onions and at the far end, Yukon Gold potatoes are up.

  This row was planted yesterday to 4 varieties of sweet corn with varying maturity dates....Quickie, Cloud 9, Kandy Korn and Peaches and Cream. Our intention is to make several plantings like this so we have sweet corn maturing all summer.

  I planted fewer tomatoes this year, so splurged and bought some big plants at Martin's Mennonite nursery.

  Blueberries in the foreground are blooming vigorously; the blackberries behind them are late this year and just starting to bud.

Medical Update
  Wednesday's chemo concluded the first 2 month regimen. Next week is an off week and then we start again. I am generally doing well. Have battled diarrhea the past 2 weeks which keeps me from maintaining my weight and strength. Have had 2 episodes of low blood pressure that needed to be treated with IV fluids. We are waiting on the lab results to see if I need an injection or an antibiotic. 
  I have lost so much hair that I finally got the "chemo buzz cut" and 2 more hats! I will look much better when I can gain about 20 pounds, too. (I've never said that before in my life! Always the other way around!)
  But we continue to praise God for the positive results of the chemo treatments!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Birthday Boy

  We celebrated Caleb's first birthday last Sunday. He was 1 on March 28, but we had to wait until the whole family was cleared up of the snuffles, colds, etc. as my blood counts are low and I am supposed to avoid such things.

Good chocolate cake!


  We have the boys again this afternoon as Katie needed to be at a business function with Dave.

  The weather is having a hard time deciding that Spring is here. Some beautiful days at 75-80 but next Tuesday is forecast at 52-32! What!
   I am trying to do as much as I can outside every day the weather allows, but my stamina is severely limited. I started the second month of chemo Wednesday. Side effects are really fairly minimal, but for stamina, hair loss and numbness of feet. 
  We continue to sell some unneeded things on Craig's List. Sold a lawn plug aerator yesterday for $120, then got a small load of topsoil delivered this morning for $100. We found some really nice 3 ft. blueberry bushes for $12.95 at Kroger, of all places, so we are replacing some that didn't make it. Also lost a lot of strawberry plants this winter.
  I am anxious to plant more garden, but my common sense tells me to be patient.
  I got a shot Wednesday that is supposed to help my body build more blood cells. I guess it is one of the PED drugs Lance Armstrong is accused of taking. Cost $3000! Thank goodness for insurance.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

More Spring and Great Report !

  The forsythia is in full bloom and the redbuds are breaking out. Looks like Spring!

The first asparagus spear of 2014! I had been checking every few days; went out today to pull a few weeds and there it was!

  Rita and I planted the onion sets and potatoes last Monday. If temperatures turn out as forecast the next 2-3 weeks, I hope to plant corn, squash, tomatoes etc. before the end of April. Accu-weather says highs from 65-80 and lows mostly 45-58 so that would be wonderful.

  I must admire the gardeners in several blogs I read who live in the "North" who still have hard freezes and snow. Minus 6 a few days ago in North Dakota? I don't think I could stand it!

Medical Update

  We received wonderful news Friday at the doctor's appointment. First of all, my blood counts, which had been dropping down to near the transfusion level, had improved. But BEST of all, the CA19-9 pancreatic cancer blood marker test, which had been skyrocketing to 14,000 and then 36,000, had dropped to 6000! God is using the chemo as we have been praying to kill those bad cells.
  This was an off week from chemo and I feel more nearly "normal" than I have in many a day, but I have another repeat of the March chemo starting Wednesday April 9 for 4 weeks, with 4 more months to follow after April.
  Thank all of you who are praying. God hears and answers!