27 December 2009

Holiday Wrap-Up

Despite a rocky start, the holidays went pretty well. Mom, Ross and I gathered with Angel and the girls at their place. It was a cozy little dinner with those that mean the most to me. The girls seemed to really like their new socks... although the gift cards seemed to go over better. We ventured out into the icy weather to look at lights around the neighborhood. Mackenzie insisted we go see the city's grandest estate because she was convinced it would be decked out... the house is nothing short of amazing but there were no decorations.We came back to find that Santa had dropped by. It was the first time the girls experienced Santa like their mom and I used to have.  Santa always came while they were sleeping, but he had to make some changes to his schedule because their dad was picking them bright and early the next morning. We spent the next several hours playing with the girls' new toys... particularly Band Hero.

We spent the next evening at Ross' dad's house. The usual suspects were present for the exchange of presents. Theresa was wearing her new socks before the night was over. Eating, chatting, opening gifts, more games on the Wii (this time it was Sports Resort) and finished off the night watching the latest Star Trek movie. Poor Ross had to keep explaining why the storyline wasn't staying true to the series.

Now Ross and I are just enjoying some quiet time around the house. We didn't even venture out to shovel the driveway or get the mail yet. We'll be finishing off the year with a gathering at Gretchen and Shaun's house. It'll be nice not to travel so far on New Year's Eve... maybe then we can enjoy a touch more of the spirits without worrying about the long drive home from Ray's. I'm glad that the bulk of the holiday madness is over and I'm ready for the new year. The whole Yulegate mess will be set aside and life will go on... minus a few relatives.

09 December 2009

Snow Day!

Peaceful Snow
It's not often the adults take a snow day, but a blizzard dumped a ton of snow on us last night. The roads are coated in snow and the plows just can't keep up. I don't think we've gotten this much snow in one storm for about ten years... and it's still going. It was bad enough that Ross took the day off.

I would have preferred that Mom didn't insisted on going to chemo by herself. Her truck is on its last leg as it is... then add the post-chemo exhaustion and heavy snow. She's promised to keep me notified, but I wish she had just rescheduled. At this point, she made it to the hospital. She said she had the truck in four-wheel-drive and it was clicking and clanking worse than ever. Thanks, Mom... that makes me feel so much better. I'd be there if we could get out of the driveway!

Guess it's a good day to get some more knitting done. I have one of Kris' socks done now. I haven't even finished the cuff on Ross' first sock. Of course he wants regular height socks that he can fold over or scrunch up! This snow day is going to mean the loss of about three inches of progress, but I should be able to get the other of Kris' socks done. I'm also hoping to finish a few pairs of slipper socks before the week is done.

05 December 2009


Sore, Blistered Skin
My hands are badly flared up again. I'm still not sure what I came in contact with. I haven't had a flare in almost a year, so it came as a bit of a shock.

I've been to the hospital and used their soaps a thousand times, so I don't think it's that. I'm very careful about what I touch there, too.

Mom and I made a few stops at stores and a Taco Bell that day also. I'm leaning toward the notion that it was the soap or something dirty at the Taco Bell. The refried beans there tasted like fish (yeah... ewww... I know!), so I'm guessing it wasn't the cleanest of restaurants.

I've been treating it with the steroid cream the dermatologist gave me, but I'm careful with it because she told me it thins the skin and makes it weaker. It also smells like, looks like and feels like Vaseline... with a medicine-y scent. Lovely, eh?

Needless to say, I haven't accomplished much in the world of knitting the last couple days. I'm planning on washing the goo off and getting back to work sometime today. Sometimes, I think I actually heal faster without the cream. With it, I can't do anything because my hands are coated in goo and all I can focus on is my itchy skin. Without it, I can keep myself and/or my hands busy and I don't scratch it. I also really have too much Yule knitting to finish so I just don't have time to take a break!

03 December 2009

Yule Gift Knitting

Socks Underway
On a lighter note... as it started snowing here in Wisconsin, it also started snowing on WordPress blogs. Cute, eh? Just the thing to boost my holiday spirit and get me working harder on my gift knitting.

I've been working on Monkeys for both of my mothers-in-law. Theresa's are the completed orange, pink and brown pair. Kris' are the red, yellow and black pair in progress.

I also have basic ribbed socks for Ross... at his not-so-subtle request. Those are the speckled-looking black ones.

The aqua-colored socks are the first of many quick slipper socks that will be gifted to a few friends and family... dependent on how many I can get done. My nieces will be among the recipients... along with a "real" gift, of course! What kid really likes getting socks?

Can No One In this Family Stay Healthy ?

Well, the family has been busy being sick. Just the highlights...

Grandpa gave us quite a scare a few days ago. He was brought in after collapsing at home. He was losing blood without a known cause. The severe lack of blood caused a heart attack. They couldn't find the bleed because the hip surgery he had just went through had required the use of the dye they needed to find the bleed. Using the dye so closely together would have caused liver failure in his already weakened liver. We were pretty sure we were going to lose him... but he pulled through once again!

Mom was scheduled for her final chemo treatment last week, but they had to cancel it because her blood counts were down too low. She went in yesterday for it and they had to reduce the dosage to about half because she wasn't feeling well. So, lucky her, there will be another session next Wednesday. She's so sick of taking the pharmacy of pills and feeling lousy.

Grandma has been getting her cataracts dealt with. They were getting to the point that it seemed to hurt her to have her eyes open. She was constantly using eye drops. She kept putting it off because of Mom, but mom convinced her to get it done before they got un-repairable. She had surgery on one eye last week and the other eye today. It sounds like that should go well.

My friend Gretchen's mom is not doing well at all. Her cancer has spread so far and so quickly that they just couldn't get control of it. The lesions are in her brain, so the family has to deal with the unfortunate side effects... confusion, memory loss, and clumsiness. It has been very hard on Gretchen. She is pregnant with her second child and due in April. She had hoped her mom would live to see her grandson, but now they just pray she makes it to share one last Christmas with them.

Please help me to keep them all in prayers.