11– Number 8 Down…. 3/4 Through!

What a great weekend I had on November 10th!  It was so fun to get out and see friends and watch a wonderful show that brought back so many great memories!  I was able to meet with some of the cast members of “Lucky Stiff” from when I did that show a couple of years ago at Rodgers Memorial Theater.  It’s sill on the top of my list as one of the most fun shows I have ever done!  And I LOVED the people in the cast!  It was so fun to see so many of them as we gathered for a little dinner beforehand and then went to see the production put on by Weber State University.  They did such a great job!  It was directed by the masterful, Jim Christian who also directed the show when I did it.  So fun to see some of the same funny bits we did plus a few more fun antics!  It’s truly one of the funniest shows ever written.  It made my day!  I was so glad I felt well enough to go!  Thanks for a great evening Lucky Stiffers!

I actually felt well enough to sit through all three meetings in church on Sunday.  That was a plus.  I miss it when I don’t get to Relief Society meetings!  It was a good day.  We try to set aside at least one Sunday a month when the whole family can get together.  Everyone is so busy, you just seem to have to schedule those things in!  I made a big pot of soup.  Tried a new recipe.  It was OK but probably not one I would make again.  But it was nice to get together.  I love my family and my kids!  Any time together with them makes me happy!

Monday was pretty ordinary as I recall.  I think I had a little bout with some stomach discomfort that day.  Not sure why, but it didn’t last too long.  But at least I finished the rest of my required Real Estate classes!  Now I can get my license renewed!  Yeah!

Tuesday, the 13th, was treatment day again.  We didn’t meet with Dr. Litton this time, but talked briefly with the Nurse Practitioner before my treatment.  I asked her if the message to Dr. Litton had gotten through about my concern for the fever and chills I had been experiencing the last couple of times.  I was hoping that they might reduce the amount of Bleomycin they are giving me to make that stop.  Instead…. his advice was that reducing the amount wouldn’t stop the fever anyway, so to try and combat it by taking Tylenol for the next 24 hours….. starting with a dose before my treatment started.  It seems to have worked.  I didn’t experience the chills and fever this time and I was so grateful!  It’s made a big difference on how I feel!

Wednesday, I made it to the temple!  I was so glad!  Though I didn’t do much while I was there…. at least I was there!  I was pretty tired though.  My body is used to 8 to 9 hours of sleep and not getting that makes a big difference for me…. especially the day after a treatment!  I was able to go on a session at least and then caught my husband before his session started.  Since they didn’t need him to stay for the session, I had him take me home a little early.  I’m hoping that next week I can do better as far as actually doing something!  I should be feeling better after a week off of treatment.

Thursday I finally got back into making some hats!  I was feeling like a slacker!  But getting through my Real Estate classes and my treatments was about all I could handle for the last couple of days!  But now I have two more hats under my belt and ready to move on with more.

I also have a self improvement course I’m taking online that I need to get through.  Now my classes are done and I renewed my license last night…. I can concentrate on spending some time with that.  Oh… and Thanksgiving coming up will take some time too…. but it’s all good!

As best as I can remember,   I think I spent the next few days relaxing and making a few more hats and planning for Thanksgiving dinner.   I did make it back to the temple on Wednesday morning.  The Cooridnator didn’t have any ‘assignments’ for me but had me go check where I was needed.  By the time I got into Initiatory to see if they needed me, all the spots were filled!  But I had a wonderful visit with about 5 patrons that I hadn’t seen in a long while.  It was so nice to catch up!  They are so sweet and were so concerned about me.  Many of them had not idea what I was going through.  They only knew they hadn’t seen me in a long while.  I love our Patrons.   After my visits and seeing that I wasn’t needed anywhere, I went on a session myself.  Once again, feeling a little tired by the end of the session…. I pulled my husband away from his session.  He was technically not needed again, so we came home a little early.

This year for Thanksgiving,  Jon and Ali wanted to host it at their new home.  Since it was their turn to spend the time with Ali’s family, they wanted to have it there.  They originally invited us to join them.  Thinking that it would only be four more people….. I think she thought maybe they could squeeze that many more in.  But Mandy had asked me if her good friend Kelsey could come join us.  She lives here from out of town and had nowhere to go.  Of course I said yes knowing that we could have dinner here if needed.  Then Nate mentioned that his roommate didn’t have anywhere to go either.  So now our numbers were six.  I kind of figured that might be a little overwhelming for Ali for her first hosting of a Thanksgiving dinner to have that many people.  They were already expecting 8 with just her family.  14 people are a lot to seat and feed for your first party!

So after asking her for an honest answer about whether that was overwhelming for her…… we decided to each have dinner at our own houses with our guests and then get together later that evening over there for dessert.  It worked out great.  Other than Nate’s roommate declined the invitation because he felt funny not knowing anybody.  (Silly boy!  Doesn’t he know how friendly we are??)  However, Nate had invited a couple of other people too.  We only ended up with one other guest, Jacquelyn, a friend of his he knows through theater.  They are both rehearsing for Christmas Carol right now.

I spent way too much time fretting about the dinner.  I knew my energy level wouldn’t be up to par so I wanted to make sure I had everything planned out and make whatever I can in advance.  Though my daughter is living with us right now, she isn’t around much and wasn’t available till the day before to help.  Thank Heavens for a wonderful husband!!

Planning ahead makes a big difference.  Thinking I need to do a million desserts was kind of not necessary…. but it happened anyway!  LOL….   Our dessert bar that night was a little insane with both families contributing!  We had a great time both at our house with a delicious meal consisting of pretty much traditional foods.  Of course we had a turkey (which turned out great), mashed potatoes and gravy, a Sweet Potato Souffle that is made with Rosemary and egg whites.  It’s NOT the typical ‘candied yams’ that I’ve never liked.  Sweet potatoes are sweet enough on there own!  It’s delicious.  It has a nice savory flavor to it.  One of my favorite sides.  Then Green Beans Almondine, homemade cranberry sauce and hot rolls.  We opted for Rhodes bake and serve this year for ease.  Like I said, pretty traditional… but delicious!

It was fun to get both families together for dessert.  We had a great time, eating way too much dessert, playing games and visiting.  All in all it was a wonderful day, full of family and gratitude…. but I was ready to hit the sack when we got home!

One thing we did do while we were getting the rest of the meat off the turkey after dinner, was throw all the bones into a crock pot so I could make some turkey stock.  I’ve never done that before, but I saw it suggested on Facebook on a page I like and I decided that was a great idea!  I love soup this time of year and what better way to get some free stock to use!  We ended up making two batches from it.  Good stuff.

Thanksgiving weekend is typically when I take down my Fall decor and get out the Christmas decor.  This is not a quick task…. even when I feel good!  But I am such a fanatic about my decor in the Fall and at Christmas time!  It just doesn’t feel like the Holidays if I don’t have my decor out!

Friday I ended up only getting my Thanksgiving decor put away.  Since my storage room is in my basement, that requires a few trips up and down the stairs.  It was tiring.  Gratefully, John helped me.  Since my friends were coming over that night to start rehearsing for a Christmas show we are doing for my Mom’s Assisted Living center, I decided to hold off on dragging out all the Christmas stuff.

It was good to get together with my girls that night.  We love singing together and don’t get enough opportunities to use our incredible talents anymore!!  <grin>  That may sound a little bold…..but we really are good!  We’ve been singing together since college where we were in a performing group at BYU called Sounds of Freedom.  It was a forerunner to Young Ambassadors and finally merged with them right after we left BYU.  In fact, our reunions are now part of the whole Young Ambassador thing.  Anyway….. we are pretty darn good and I hate that we don’t perform much anymore!  Can you tell I love to be on stage????

Saturday I got a good portion of my Christmas decor out.  John got the tree up but it still needs to be decorated.  I figured it was easier to get all the other stuff up first.  Now I just need the energy to finish!

On Sunday, the kids came over and we enjoyed Thanksgiving day leftovers.  I had to make some fresh mashed potatoes, since someone in the house had almost finished off the leftovers….. but we won’t say who other than it wasn’t me!!    Plus I made some fresh rolls.  Other than that, we heated up leftovers.  It was great.  Mostly because my family is here.  I would love to do that every Sunday…. but it seems their time doesn’t always allow it.  Hopefully we can do it a little more in December at least!

I didn’t get much done on Monday.  Wasn’t feeling very great.  I ended up taking a 2 hour nap.  So much for my plans to go out to Bountiful before we went to see OLIVER at Hale.  But, at least we made it to OLIVER!  I enjoyed it.  I know the family of the little boy who played Oliver so I really enjoyed it.  But I honestly don’t think I’m as critical as some of the rest of my family.  I just try to sit back and enjoy it no matter what.  It was a nice evening.  The young lady that Nate had invited over for Thanksgiving day dinner played Nancy in the show and did a marvelous job.  She was one of the highlights in it.  Way to go, Jacquelyn!

I haven’t felt like I bounced back from my chemo this time like I have in the past.  Many more days of being tired and sometimes just feeling icky.  It’s nothing horrible, but I don’t enjoy it!!  Consequently…. it’s the Wednesday after Thanksgiving and my tree still isn’t finished!!  That’s my goal for today…. finish getting out the few things up here and maybe decorate my piano in the basement.  I may leave the rest of the basement to my daughter.  Since she is the one living down there, I’ll let her do it when she gets back from L.A.

So, yesterday was another treatment day.  #8 down.  3/4 of the way through.  Still fighting with myself about whether I want to complete all 12 treatments.  I so worry about the long term side effects that can happen.  And they are not good ones.  I still feel strongly that the other natural supplements that are available to me will continue to kick it’s butt and that I don’t need to keep poisoning myself with chemo!  But the other side of the fact is that Hodgkins is one of the few that they have studies to show can be cured.  They just feel strongly that 6 complete cycles (12 treatments) is what it takes to better ensure that it doesn’t come back.  That’s the part that’s hard to argue with other than does EVERYONE need a full 12 treatments?  Probably not….. and the doctor kind of admitted that yesterday….. but how do you know if you are one of those????  Just so you know….. I have my appointments scheduled through the end of December right now….

Anyway…..  #8 down.  Made it through.  The Tylenol kept me from getting a fever again so I feel pretty good right now.  I usually feel pretty good for a couple of days.  We’ll see how I feel for the weekend!  We have tickets to go see “5 Carols for Christmas/ and the Jingle Jacks” at Centerpoint theater for tomorrow night.  It’s the Christmas show I REALLY wanted to audition for after “Little Women” had closed…. but I just didn’t feel it was fair to my hubby to commit to that.  I wasn’t sure how I’d handle the rest of my treatments being closer together than they had been.  I think now that I would have been alright…. but I didn’t know that!!!!  At least I get to go support all the wonderful women that did get cast!  It’s great being in the theater world.  It makes going to see shows so much more fun when you know people in it!

So onward and upward!  Looking forward to getting back to concentrating on more crocheting!  I forgot to mention that yesterday during chemo, I crocheted an Angry Birds hat that I am donating to a boutique here in my area to help raise money for a little 3 year old girl who is being treated for Leukemia.  They are trying to raise money to help with medical costs.  I figured I’d do what I could to help a little.  The hat turned out so cute that I think I’ll do a couple more!  I only have a few days though…. the boutique is this Saturday!  Time to go…. I’ve got to decorate and crochet!!

Thought you night enjoy seeing how the hat turned out!  And here’s the link to the free pattern if you want to give it a try yourself.


Here’s a side view…
Here’s how the hat turned out! Pretty cute! This is a small child size. I think I’ll make a small adult size too. It was fun!

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