Since Bob's diagnosis of Lymphoma, more than three months ago, our life has be chaotic.  One example is he has spent 4 weeks total, out of the last six weeks as an inpatient at Loma Linda Hospital.  He had two inpatient chemo treatments, with four more to go; and was hospitalized for pain for 21 days straight.  The pain was caused by a deep hematoma resulting from a bone marrow biopsy.  Initially he could stand but not take a step; then when the hematoma released, his system was flooded with potassium and uric acid, which caused a severe gout flare, and he could no longer stand.

For me, I'm doing OK, and two companies have helped me stay healthy during all this, and I thought I'd give a shout out to them.

The first is GoPicnic!  These are Ready-To-Eat Meals,  If you were in the military, these are so much better than MREs!  They are great tasting and no refrigeration necessary.  I love that the calories are listed right on the front of the box.  There is a wide variety of choices, including Breakfast, Lunch and Snacks.  I don't eat beef, so I skipped those; and went mainly with vegetarian choices.  I have not been disappointed in any of my choices, but the five in the photo are my favorites.  GoPicnic boxes are available in some stores, I found my first one in the hospital gift shop, but I found much better prices when I ordered online,  If you're interested, sign up for their emails and get special offers galore.

The second one is Graze.  "Snacks by Mail", and "Snacking | Reinvented" are two of their mottoes.  For less money than you'd spend at Starbucks each day, you receive a snack box in the mail, each with four snacks.  Each box is tailored to the feedback you give them of your likes and dislikes.  I choose the "calorie counter box" and that helped me to stay on track with my slow weight loss.  Instead of grabbing something from a vending machine, I grab one of the four snacks included in each box, and nibble away.  I mean, who could resist, Hot Cross Yum, Topical Daiquiri, Banana Caramel Dippers or Cracking Black Peppercorn?  Then there's, Scandinavian Forest, Cheese & Chive Oatbakes, Raspberry & Coconut Muffin or Vegetable Power!  These have been lifesavers for me; I hate to be hungry.

(I've loss 15 pounds since Easter; talk about slow.)
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The Bob Report

We got the call that the had a hospital bed for Bob at LLUMC, last Wednesday, so he could start chemo.  We dropped everything, and went.  I mean I even stopped sewing in the middle of a seam!

Wednesday and Thursday were taken up with pre chemo "stuff".  He had chemo on Friday & Saturday.  Sunday was an evaluation day and I brought him home on Monday afternoon.  We were told that the first round of chemo was edited due to Bob's additional health problems.  Future rounds will need to be full strength in order to "kill" the cancer.  We were also told that he really did well and would not need to be hospitalized during the subsequent rounds of chemo.

Tuesday & Wednesday were great, considering the chemo.  He hadn't had much of an appetite, so I made some of his favorite foods and he really "pigged out".  Thursday at 4AM, that all ended.  Bob woke up in excruciating pain, in his right rear hip area.  He has low pain level if he doesn't move, if he moves his pain level jumps to 9 out of 10.  We called his oncologist and she decided she needed to see him.  By late afternoon he was admitted to the hospital.  So far they haven't been able to find the cause of his pain and it hasn't gotten better/worse.  He can stand but not walk; the movement of walking is debilitating.

The good news is they're still trying to find the source of the pain.  He won't be going home until he can walk.  I'm coming to the hospital each day and staying until late afternoon or evening.  We have great neighbors and they have been walking Frisco and Ben for me, if I'm not home by 4:30-5PM.

Life goes on; we'll get through this bump in the road, like we've done so many other times in our 50 plus years of marriage.

This is the first time I'm attempting to post from my iPad, we'll see how it goes.

Flash Mob and Bob!

Saw this on FB this morning and thought I'd share it.  I'm not an emotional or weepy gal, but with everything going on at Casa Prytz, I did feel a catch in my throat.

Here's what's going on:

This happened on Monday: An 11 hour day today. Bob had labs and a Bone Marrow Biopsy in the AM and in the afternoon we saw the Medical Oncologists. From the tests they did last week, they know that the mass is in his abdomen and in his chest. That means it's at least stage 3, but may be stage 4 depending on today's biopsy; the results may take 2 weeks.

But chemo will start on Wednesday. Bob will be hospitalized for 3 or more days to determine his reaction to the chemo. They are trying to tailor the chemo to his cancer and his other health problems, like his heart and kidneys are not fully functioning. After that the chemo will most likely be every 3 weeks, for 3 days in a row. Sharon met us at Loma Linda today. It's great to have wonderful daughters.

And, today, we're waiting for a phone call from LLUMC to tell us they have a hospital bed available for Bob. We were warned the call could come anytime in this 24 hour day. I hoping for noonish, so we can get this ball rolling. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Thanks for stopping by and sharing my life with me,

Milestones and my Day Job

In the social media world, I've hit a couple of milestones recently

  • On Pinterest, over 6K followers
  • On YouTube, over 1,000 people have viewed the Tai Chi Ball videos Bob and I made for Parkinson's patients.

Lately, my time is really not my own.  Once we became empty nesters, I really valued my alone time.  I certainly love being part of a couple, but I also love being fiercely independent.  Bob is much the same way.  He and I really are a good pair.  Cancer has taken away almost all of our ability to be independent.

For the last month I've been the only driver, he's weak and this is a safety issue.  He could certainly drive, but why?  This week he had doctor and test appointments, one to three everyday, I drove him, and went to the doctor appointments, too; except Wednesday.  On Wednesday I cleaned and did errands.

For over 40 years, Bob has always done his own laundry.  All those years ago, he would change his clothes 3 or 4 times a day!  Work, workout(s), relaxing.  I advised him that he needed to take care of his own mountain of dirty clothes, or go naked.  So he learned to do his own laundry.  Now, he can still manage the task, but it takes a day or two, so I do his laundry in a couple of hours.

I am not complaining, change is good, especially to help out a great guy.  The only thing I'm not happy with is lack of quilting/stitching time.  That's been the first thing to go, mainly regulated to the weekends.  I think of Quilting as my Day Job, now Bob is my Day Job!


I threw in some photos of recent quilt work, every post needs photos!  Lots of hearts, lately.
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No News Is Good News, it's a lie.

Most of my "news" is in the "not good" news category, but first I'll tell about the photo.  Our daughter Carrie has lived in NC for 10 years.  Her 100% California family moved to the Raleigh area and are very happy there.  The downside for Bob and I, is we seldom get to see her or her family.  Carrie, like Bob, is not a phone person, so most of our contact is via email!  Four weeks ago, someone knocked on our door, we live in a gated community, and were not expecting visitors, so we figured it was a neighbor.  Wrong, it was both of our daughters and our grandson.  What a delightful surprise.  Carrie had come to SoCal for a visit with her sister, and they thought they'd surprise us.  We had a fun visit and went to Chili's for lunch.

The girls came back a couple of days later to borrow one of our cars, so Carrie would have her own set of wheels while she was in Orange County; they took us to lunch, too.  At the end of her SoCal visit, Carrie came and stayed with us for four days, before returning to NC.  The top photo was taken during those four days.  Bob's T says You Can't Scare Me, I Have Two Daughters, ain't that the truth.  All these visits, were fantastic and a shot in the arm for Bob.  He loves his daughters and loves to see them in the flesh.

Right before Carrie stayed with us, we had an appointment with the Oncological Surgeon, at  the Loma Linda Cancer Center.  He's the one who ordered the biopsy.  He told us Bob's diagnosis, Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.  Here's a link I found with lots of info.  Bob's scheduled to have a porta-cath, installed, next week.  He'll have chemo, but we really don't know as much as we want.  The surgeon asked us to wait for our appointment with the medical oncologist, he'll refer us to, who will be incharge of Bob's care.  Right now, we're still waiting for the appointment.

Bob is loosing weight, because he just doesn't feel like eating; he's nauseated.  This as me as concerned as the cancer.  My immediate goal is to have him start eating, at least a little more.  He has weight to loose, but this really is not the way!

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Bob Report

We went to the Loma Linda Cancer Center, yesterday. The surgeon told us that he could not operate to remove the mass, it's too entangled with too many things. He thinks it's likely Lymphoma not Sarcoma, but we have to wait for a biopsy to see what it is. He's pretty sure it's cancer but we won't know until the biopsy. If it's Lymphoma, it'll be treated with chemo, if it's Sarcoma, chemo and radiation. This is all a lot to take in, but we'll know more after the biopsy, which we also need to wait on!

Bob's a strong guy and still absorbing what's going on. Keep those prayers and good thoughts coming his way.

(Photo take last month at the Lux Art Center.)
Thanks for stopping by and sharing my life with me,

The Bob Report

I haven't done a "Bob Report" in a long time.  Things have pretty much been status quo, until now. This photo shows what we feel like; we're looking down a long tunnel and we think it will all work out, when we get to the end.

Here's snippets of emails that I've sent to friends:

1. Bob's having a new problem that we're trying to get diagnosed. He has a pain on the lower left side of his chest, it hurts to breath, and the pain radiates around to his back. Not fun. An X-ray showed nothing, and yesterday he had an MRI. We'll get to the bottom of it, but everything takes time.

2. We still don't have an answer for Bob, but we're getting close. First an x-ray showed nothing. Then he had a ct-scan and it showed a mass that his doctor said was about the size of a softball or grapefruit, located where the stomach, lungs and all kinds of good stuff come together, on the left side of his lower chest. She sent him to a surgeon.

We went to the surgeon today and he said he's pretty sure it's cancer and and the mass is larger than we thought and tangled around a lot of things. He thought is was in the stomach, and that Bob's case was too complex for his surgical group and a local hospital and referred us to an oncological surgeon at a University hospital. We faxed the necessary reports to the oncological surgeon and are waiting for a call back with an appointment.

So that's where we stand, right now. We're optimistic, I can't think of another way to be. We have a lot of living to do, so we'll get thru this, too.

3. Bob has an appt. with the oncological surgeon at Loma Linda University Hospital in Loma Linda, on 9/11, in the afternoon.

So, on Thursday we'll find out what this surgeon thinks.

Thanks for stopping by and sharing my life with me,
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