Monday, February 29, 2016


DeBary, FL.

51 deg. mostly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = A mix of clouds and sun. High 78F. Winds WSW at 5 to 10 mph.

Bummer!!!!!!! Sunday morning at about 1:00 am, Jim woke up with a stomach ache. From that time on, until about 10:00 am, he spent most of the time in the bathroom!!! :-(  We don't know if it was a side effect from the chemo treatment he had on Friday or if he picked up a "bug" someplace, but it really doesn't matter as there was no way that he'd be able to make it to the much anticipated fish fry later in the day!!!! :-(   In fact, since he hadn't slept much during the night, he slept much of yesterday. When he was awake, he just watched some TV while trying to re-hydrate himself as much as possible.

Linda called Dee Dee to let her and Dave know that she and Jim wouldn't be able to make it to the fish fry. Of course Dee Dee understood and said that she and Dave would be in our area sometime in March and would try to stop by for awhile for a visit.

I hope they can. I'm sure Jim and Linda would enjoy visiting with them.

Don't really have much else to report. It sure was nice that Jim didn't have to head over to get a radiation treatment this morning. In fact, he actually slept in a little, getting up about 7:00 instead of 5:00 or 5:30. ;-)

A Quote to Ponder :  “Never let yesterday's disappointments overshadow tomorrow's dreams.”
Author Unknown


Saturday, February 27, 2016

Last Radiation Treatment and A Fish Fry?

DeBary, FL.

39 deg. clear,, no wind.

Forecast = Abundant sunshine. High 68F. Winds NNW at 5 to 10 mph.

Saturday Night = A clear sky. Low 39F. Winds light and variable.

Nothing special happened since I last posted except, yesterday, Jim had his last Radiation treatment!! :-)  That means that he won't have to be getting up and leaving here by 8;15 every weekday morning and hopefully, some of the side effects such as the fatigue Jim has been experiencing, will start to fade away.

He also had his last weekly Chemo treatment yesterday. The next treatment will be in about 21 days, although, he will still have to go in to get a blood test every week, in-between the treatments. The Chemo treatments Jim has been receiving, have lasted about 3 hours, but these last 2 treatments will last about 5 hours, so it will be a longer day and who knows what the side effects will be from the heavier dose of the medications.

To celebrate Jim's last Radiation Treatment, He and Linda went to Gram's Kitchen for dinner last night. Jim ordered the Prime Rib Special that they have every weekend and Linda ordered meatloaf. As usual both dinners were very good.

Oh, speaking of food!!! The other day, Jim received an e-mail from Dave, (one of the Illinois bunch), and they are having their annual "fish fry" over at their home at the Southern Aire RV Park in Thonotosassa, FL tomorrow.

If you are a long time reader of this blog, you may remember that the whole Illinois Bunch used to spend the winter at that RV Park and we used to spend a couple weeks each winter camping over there and visiting with them.  Well, we lost Gordy a couple years ago and Dorthy sold their Motorhome. Denny and Bev have not been coming down to Florida for the last couple years, so that just leaves Dave and Dee Dee who have bought a Park Model Home over there.

Anyway, every summer, Dave does a lot of fishing up in Illinois. He and Dee Dee freeze the fish and bring them down here for a "fish fry" for their friends. Most everyone brings food along, so they end up having a Pot Luck Dinner with the fish as the main dish. If I remember right, there were about 50 people there for the last fish fry that Jim and Linda were able to attend, 2 years ago.

If Jim is still feeling well, Lila will take them over there tomorrow. They're  planning on eating around 3:00 but if they can, Jim and Linda will head over there earlier so that they can spend tome time visiting with Dave and Dee Dee, before they get too busy with meal set-up, preparation and cooking.

Should be a fun day, and it will be a good excuse for Jim and Linda to get out of here for a day. ;-)

Did you know that today is  International Sword Swallowers Day?


Saturday, February 20, 2016

Long Time Since Last Post

DeBary, FL.

52 deg. mostly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Saturday, Sun and clouds mixed. High 76F. Winds ENE at 5 to 10 mph.

It's been a long time since I've up-dated this blog, so I thought I'd better try and do it this morning. There's really nothing earthshaking to report, all of us are doing well.  Big RED is bored out of his mind!! :-(  He's really getting tired of just sitting under the carport and plugged into the battery tender that Jim bought to keep his batteries charged up. He says that he'd rather be out on the road charging his batteries himself!!!

Nora seems to be doing fine out at the CG. Last I heard, she was also getting pretty tired of just sitting there, although she says that she's enjoying watching the people walk by.

Linda and I continue to just do daily things. 5 or 6 days ago, Linda took Lila and headed over to Winn Dixie and bought a bunch of groceries.  (About wore herself out), and then a few days ago, made a run to Walgreen's to buy some much needed items. I continue to guard the house while Jim and Linda are gone to Jim's medical treatments and watch the people walk by on the street.

Jim continues to do pretty well, but some of the side-effects of his treatments continue to take their toll.  Fatigue continues to be a big side-effect. Both the chemo and radiation contribute to fatigue and the accumulative effect keeps getting worse. He only has 5 more radiation treatments though, so maybe that will help a little.

This last Monday, Jim was scheduled for his normal Chemo treatment, but his bowels were giving him all sorts of problems, (another side-effect of Chemo), so he called and told them he couldn't make it. That was fine, but the next available time when he could receive a treatment was yesterday. That wasn't a problem but now all the appointments for the rest of the treatments that he'll be getting are switched to Thursday or Friday, as they like to keep the treatments as close as possible to 7 days apart.  

I guess it really won't matter, but you do get used to doing a certain thing on a certain day.

For awhile, Jim's appetite wasn't too good and he wasn't eating well. (Yet another side effect of chemo)  He was starting to lose weight which didn't sit well with either of his doctors. That's one of the reasons that Linda went to the grocery store as she and Jim sat down and talked about what he thought sounded good to him. They came up with a list of foods and now since Linda has been preparing those items, he has started to put a little weight back on. ;-)

So, life goes on. Like I said, Jim only has 5 more radiation treatments left, so by next Friday, he should be finished with them. He actually only has 3 more chemo treatments left, but the last 2 will be stronger and will be spaced out at 21 day intervals, so it will be sometime around the 22nd of April before he's finished with the treatments, follow-up blood tests and doctor's appointments.

Oh, and of course, there will be another PET Scan sometime before then to make sure the treatments have  been successful.

A Quote to Ponder : “Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.”
Joshua J. Marine


Wednesday, February 10, 2016

More Improvement But Also More Side Effects

DeBary, FL.

59 deg. clear, West wind with gusts to 20 mph.

Forecast = tonight, Clear skies. Low 33F. Winds WNW at 5 to 10 mph.

The day-to-day happenings around here have been pretty boring. Just normal living.

Monday, Jim had a radiation treatment at 8:45 in the morning and then headed up to DeLand to have his weekly chemo treatment which always includes a chemo doctor's appointment.

When Jim goes for chemo treatment, the first step is to get weighed, have blood drawn and then see the doctor. They have a lab right there, and by the time he sees the doctor, (Doctor Saferali),  she already has the results of the blood test. So far, Jim 's weight has been stable and the blood test results have been pretty good, but this time, he had lost some weight since last week and some of the numbers on the blood test were out of the "normal range".

Jim's appetite has not been real good lately and so he has not been eating as much as usual, thus the weight loss. And, his white blood count is getting low and this can be a very serious thing. You see, if your white count gets too low, you loose your resistance to any infections, such as colds, or other bugs you may pick up by being with other people or eating any fruit or vegetables that are raw and not washed thoroughly or not cooked properly.

So, what does this mean? Well, the doctor recommended that for now, Jim stay away from crowded places, like busy restaurants, stores or any place where there may be a lot of  "germs" floating around in the air. She also said that washing produce was very important and being very careful to cook things completely.  She also said that if the white count hasn't improved by next week, the best thing to do would be to skip a week of chemo and then resume treatment after the bone marrow has a chance to bring the count up some.

Jim is also starting to have more side effects from the chemo. He's noticed more fatigue, loss of appetite, some weakness, and some bowel problems. He pretty much expected these things to happen eventually so wasn't too surprised. Oh, and he's also noticed a lot of  hair in his comb when combing his hair, so that means soon he'll be losing all his hair. :-(

But,  ,  ,  ,  the good news!!!!

Jim's lung is working very well!! In fact the chemo doctor said that she couldn't tell any difference between the left and right lung when she listened to his breathing with her stethoscope!!! That means that the lung has completely re-inflated and the tumor has shrunk enough to allow good passage of air in and out of the lung!!!! :-)

Yesterday morning, Jim had his usual radiation treatment and then saw the radiation doctor. (He sees Dr. Graham every Tuesday after his treatment), He confirmed Dr. Saferali's diagnosis about the function of the lung and was very pleased with the results. If everything goes a planned, Jim has just 12 more radiation treatments. That means that on or about the 26th of this month, he'll be finished with the every day treatments.

He also only has only 4 more chemo treatments left, but that will stretch out into April as the last 2 treatments will be at 21 day intervals. (More on that in a future post).

The weather around here has been bouncing around all over the place. We've had high temps in the 80's with lows at night in the 60's. But we've also had high's in the 50's with low's near the freezing point. We've had quite a bit of sunshine, but also some very stormy days with very heavy rain. I can't complain though, it sure has been better than the weather up north in Illinois!! ;-)

A Quote to Ponder : “Every man dies. Not every man truly lives.”


Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Continuing To Improve

DeBary, FL.

67 deg. partly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Scattered clouds with the possibility of an isolated thunderstorm developing this afternoon. High 83F. Winds SSE at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 30%

Not a whole lot to report. Jim's breathing seems to be improving as time passes and so far, he hasn't had any serious side effects from the chemo treatments.

He continues to go for radiation treatments every morning, (Monday through Friday) and to chemo treatments, every Monday, after the radiation treatment. He's now about 1/2 way through the radiation treatments and is looking forward to not getting up every morning and having to be over there by 8:45.

The other day, Jim and Linda took Big RED and headed over to Paradise Lakes RV Park to check on Nora. When they returned, they said that everything looked good and that she was nice and dry with no leaks, even though we've had some serious rain storms lately. There was also some talk about putting Nora in storage to save some $$. There is a possibility that they may be able to leave her "on site" and still save quite a bit, but not quite as much as moving her to the storage area.

They'll be heading over to the Park and talk to Kelly to see just what their options are, sometime before the 13th when the current lot rent runs out.

Yesterday, Lila took Jim and Linda to Walgreen's to pick up some prescriptions and other necessities and then in the evening, over to Gram's Kitchen for dinner. Linda had a chef's salad and Jim had the Country Fried Steak. Both of them said that their meals were excellent. :-)

No big plans for the near future. The radiation treatments every morning kind of limit what can be done each day.

A Quote to Ponder : “The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook.”
William James