Friday, December 1, 2017

Finally!! All The Test Results Are In!!

DeBary, FL.

65 deg. clear, no wind.
Forecast = tomorrow, Mostly Sunny. High 81F. Winds light and variable.

Monday morning, I had that needle biopsy on my left lung. After waiting for 2 hours, they finally wheeled me into the room where there was a CAT Scan machine and all the other necessities for the biopsy. I was given a sedative and soon I was in "la la" land. ;-)

I was aware of what was going on though and the experience wasn't one I'd like repeat if I can help it.

The procedure took about an hour and then it was to recovery for 2 hours for observance and to make sure there was no bleeding our leakage of the lung into the chest cavity. Linda and I had arrived at the hospital about 9:00 am as directed and it was almost 4:pm by the time we got out of there.

Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday were spent worrying about the results and finally today, it was time to see the doctor to get them.

So, here are the results!!!!

There is no cancer, the shaded area in the lung is from an infection and scar tissue, probably caused by the collapse or previous radiation treatments.

I'm now on antibiotics and have been released by the radiation doctor until the first part of April, when I'll have another scan to make sure everything is still OK.

So, as of now, both Linda and I are cancer free and it sure feels good. Time will tell, but maybe there's even a little more traveling in our future?

We miss you, Blaine!!!


Thursday, November 23, 2017

Jim Reluctantly Takes Over Blaine's Barks

This is going to be difficult!!!

I really don't even know where to start, so I guess I'll just "dive in" and see where this goes.

First of all, Blaine's last post was way back in August and we were staying in Champaign, IL. We met up with Ron and Marilyn and had a nice meal and some great conversation with this great couple. While in Champaign, we also met up with other long time RVing friends, Mike and Terri who we also went out to dinner with and had a very nice visit. We also spent a day visiting with Linda's sister, Nancy who lives up in Plainfield, IL.

Before leaving Champaign, Jeff and Heather, my son and his partner, flew in to Chicago from Portland, OR. They then rented a car and came down to see us for a few days. It was so good to see them as we hadn't seen them for a few years.

After being in Champaign for 5 weeks, we headed up to River Falls, WI, where we spent some time with Glenn and Jeanette, (Linda's brother and his wife). Upon returning to Illinois, we stayed at a very nice motel in Paxton IL where I rested up before continuing our trip towards the East Coast.

From Paxton, we headed over to Indianapolis where we visited Linda's cousin, Mike and his wife, Sandy. Then, it was on to Berea, KY where we visited with another of Linda's cousins, Rick. From there we headed to North Carolina to see Roland and Louise, who are very good friends of ours.

It was on this leg of the trip that Blaine disappeared!!!

I don't know what happened or where he went, but all of a sudden, we realized that Blaine wasn't with us!!!! Linda called back to the last 2 motels that we stayed at and no one had seen him. I don't know if he left on his own or if we missed bringing him out of a motel, but at any rate, we couldn't find him!!!! I do know that he wasn't very happy with our current mode of traveling from Motel to Motel.  My hope is that he found a nice family to live with, hopefully one with a small child or children who would love him like we did.

We do really miss him as we've traveled with him for so many years and he had become a very important part of our family.

After spending a few days visiting with Roland and Louise, we headed to Apex, NC where we spent time with my son, Mike, and his family. Then after about a week, we headed to Virginia Beach, VA where we spent about another week with Linda's son, Joe, and his family.

From there, we headed down to South Carolina where we stayed for a few nights at a very nice hotel that was right on the beach, Then it down here to Florida where we arrived at home, here in DeBary on October, 20th.

By the time we arrived here in Florida I was completely worn out. It took all of the energy I could gather to help Linda get all the stuff out of the car and into the house. In fact, it took 2 days to get it all carried in.

It was a very tiring trip for me and by the time we got home, I was saying that I never wanted to take another trip like that again. It was good to see all the family and friends that we visited with though and both Linda and I really enjoyed that part of the trip.

Once home, the doctor's visits started again and also the tests that no one likes to have.

Linda had a CT Scan and then went to the doctor's office for an exam and the results of the scan. I'm glad to say that everything is fine and Linda is good to go until spring, when she'll probably have another exam.

I had a PET Scan and everything looked good on it, except one area in my left lung which the doctor called "a hazy area". It's not clear if it is the start of another mass, an infection, or just something resulting from that lung collapsing, back in 2015. So, now, I'm scheduled for a needle biopsy this  Monday morning, to see what is going on in there. Then, the doctors will decide what treatment, (if any) should be administered. 

OK, enough of that depressing doctor stuff!!!!

Today. Linda and I are headed over to Marv and Inez's house for Thanksgiving dinner. Marv and Inez are Lindsey's parents and if you remember, they always invite us to dinner with them and their family. I'm sure we'll eat too much, but I guess once or twice a year isn't going to hurt us too much.

Linda and I want to wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving and a great Holiday season. Please be safe if traveling. There's lots of "crazy" people out there on the roads.

We miss you, Blaine.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Very Sad News!!!

Champaign, IL.

77 deg. overcast, no wind.

Forecast = Cloudy skies early, then partly cloudy after midnight. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. Low 68F. Winds light and variable.

About 9:30 or so this morning Jim and Linda hopped into Lily and headed to a little cemetery, out in the country between Champaign and Fisher. Some of Linda's distant relatives are buried there and they usually go out there when we are in the area.

After viewing the graves, they decided to head to Rantoul to stop in at the Prairie Pines CG to see if Paul and Louise were there, and say Hi to them if they were. When they arrived, Jim noticed that Louise's car wasn't there, but the office door was open, so they parked Lily and went up the walk. As they got up to the office, Linda, one of the people who had helped Louise with the CG last year came out and greeted them. Upon asking about Paul and Louise, she told them that while they were down in Texas, in December, Louise had a stroke and ended up in a hospital. While in the hospital, they discovered a large cancerous tumor, (I think in her mid-section).

I don't know all the details, but in March, Louise passed away, from the cancer!!!

Don't know what else to say. We're all in  shock!!!

Paul is living in his 5th wheel trailer at the CG and helping out as much as he can. He is suffering from dementia and is having a lot of trouble. Luckily, his son, Mark, is staying there with him to help as much as possible. Both Jim and Linda said that they doubt if Paul will be able to do much of anything pretty soon.

A very sad  situation.

While they were there, Ron and Marilyn stopped by, (friends of their's that are staying at the CG) and they talked for a little while. They have made plans to meet up at the Urbana Gardens Restaurant for a meal soon, and maybe Jim and Linda will learn more about Paul and Louise then.

Rest in peace, Louise. We'll miss you.



Saturday, August 12, 2017

Doctor's Visits and The Woodspring Suites Hotel

Champaign, IL

67 deg. clear, N. wind @ 8 mph.
Forecast tonight = Mostly clear. Lows overnight in the mid 50s.

Forecast tomorrow = Sunny, high 81F. Winds light and variable.

Since I've last posted, both Jim and Linda have been fairly busy. Monday morning, Lily took Linda and Jim to Fisher, IL, where Linda had an appointment with her GP doctor. Everything went fine, except her blood pressure was a little high, (which often happens when Linda goes to the doctor's office), and she needed Linda to come back for a fasting blood test to check her A1C glucose count. (She scheduled her to come back on Wednesday morning).

Tuesday was open, but Wednesday proved to be a pretty busy "doctor" day.

Wednesday morning, Linda's appointment with her GP doctor was at 9:15. After the blood test, they stopped by the Blue Star Restaurant in Fisher for breakfast before coming back here. Then, at 2:30, Linda had an appointment with her retinologist, (Dr. Gandhi). Again, everything went well and he told her that her eyes were "stable", which considering everything, is very good. :-)  Then, at 3:00, Jim had an appointment at Dr. Gandhi's office to get a OCT Scan of his eyes to check on his glaucoma. (These results would be sent to his Glaucoma Dr., Dr Anderson),

It was after 4::00 by the time Lily brought them back home.

Thursday and Friday were free days, but this morning, Jim had his appointment with Dr. Anderson, so they left here about 9:30 so as to make his 10:00 appointment.

Again, everything went well, and the Dr. gave Jim the good news that his eyes were doing fine.

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  ,  , except for Linda having to go back to her GP doctor on the 28th of August to get the results of the A1C test and to get her blood pressure checked, both Linda and Jim are done with their doctors!!

Now, let me tell you a little about where we're staying. It's called Woodspring Suites and is an extended stay hotel. (Click on  name to go to their web site). It is kind of spartan, butt that keeps the cost down. They don't furnish dishes, pots or pans, or even have much furniture in the room except the bed, table and 2 kitchen  type chairs. There is a kitchen with a full sized refrigerator, microwave and a 2 burner electric cook-top. And of course a large TV and a full bathroom. Jim and Linda brought along 2 comfortable lawn chairs that they sit in while watching TV or they can lay on the bed which is supplied with bedding.

Some folks may not like this set-up, but Jim and Linda brought along an electric skillet, some cookware and silverware, went to the local Goodwill store to buy a pot they needed and seem to be getting along quite nicely. And, being that they are staying for a month, the nightly rate is less than $35.00 per night.

Not too shabby!!! ;-)

Nothing much scheduled for this next week. I know Jim and Linda have some things they want to do and people to  see, so they'll probably do some of that. In the meantime, I'll just say that Linda was very relieved to get the good news about her eyes and in fact both of them were happy that all the doctors visits went well.

Thanks for reading this and check back again. I'll be posting about things that are happening during this next week.

Did you know that in  In 1991, Wayne Allwine, the voice of Mickey Mouse, married Russi Taylor€”the voice of Minnie?


Sunday, August 6, 2017

Florida To Illinois

Champaign, IL

68 deg. Overcast, no wind.

Forecast tonight = Mostly cloudy skies. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. Low near 60F. Winds light and variable.

By the time Jim and Linda got all of the remaining things packed into Lily, most of the electric in the house shut off, and the water turned off, we pulled out of the car port at home about 10:45 AM on Sunday, 7-31-17. We really weren't in much of a hurry as the Motel that Jim had called, had a 3:00 Check-in time and Jim figured out that it would be about a 4 hour drive up to Monticello, FL. where it was located.

The route we took was US 17 up to Barberville, Rt. 40 over to near Ocala, Rt. 326 around the north side of Ocala and over to US 27A which took us to Chiefland and then US 19 up to  Monticello.

We hit some heavy rain on the  way, but by the time, (3:45, and 221 miles), we arrived at the Econo Lodge, it had cleared up nicely.

The Motel was very nice. It had a medium sized room with a bath, a king bed and a small refrigerator to put food, out of our cooler, into.

Jim seemed to do pretty well driving up there, but by the time he and Linda brought all the necessary items into the room, he was pretty tired.

But, after a good night's sleep, Jim was ready to go again in the morning, and after loading up the car, we left the motel at about 10;35 and headed further North, on US 19 first up into Georgia and to Albainy, Then, US 82 up to Columbus, and then I-185 and US 80 around Columbus and into Alabama. and then US 280 over to Opelike, AL.

After stopping for gas in Georgia, and a Cracker Barrel for lunch, near Columbus, it was right at 2:10, central time, when we pulled up in front of another Econo Lodge. So it had taken us about 4 hours and 35 minutes to travel the 208 miles over there.

This Econo lodge wasn't so nice. Jim had trouble with the door lock up arrival and the inside of the room wasn't very well maintained. It was clean though and it had a small fridge like the first one, so we stayed overnight, being sure to deadbolt the door.

Tuesday, Jim and Linda decided to do a short day, so we left about 9:35 and only drove up to Albertville on US 431, stopping again for gas, which brought us to the King's Inn after 148 miles and at about 12:45 in the afternoon.

A nice short 3 hour and 10 minuted drive. ;-)

The King's Inn was very nice. A nice big clean room with a King bed and a nice big bathroom. After we were settled in, and Jim took a nap, he and Linda headed over to a Shoney's Restaurant for a nice  dinner.

Wednesday morning, we left Albertville right at 10:00 and continued Northwest on 431, taking it up to Huntsville where we turned North on US 231. 231 took us up into Tennessee and to Murfreesboro, where we turned NW on I-24 and then North on I-840 and I-40 East back to 231 to miss city traffic and small roads. Once back on 231, we followed it up into Kentucky and to Scottsville where we pulled into a Executive Inn just outside of town.

It was 3:10 when we pulled up in front of the office, so it took us 5 hours and 10 minutes to travel the 198 miles up there and that included a very severe rain storm near Murfreesboro, where we were driving as slow as 30mph on I-24!!!

The Executive Inn was very nice. a large room, spotlessly clean and very friendly people in the office.

Thursday morning we left Scottsville about 10:25 and followed US 231 up to near Bowling Green, where we turned off on the William H. Natcher Parkway which took us up to Owensboro and across the Ohio River on Rt 161 into Indiana. When we came to the little town of Reo, we turned West on Indiana Rt. 66 and took it over to the I-164 belt route that goes around the East side of Evansville, IN. 164 took us up to I- 64 which took us West over to US 41.

Just south of 64 on 41 we went to a and Amish Restaurant where Jim and Linda had great Buffet. Then we crossed 41 and checked into the Super 8 Motel. It was 3:10 by the time we arrived, so it took us about 3 hours and 45 minutes to travel 145 miles and have dinner.

The Super 8 was very nice but at that Motel, you have to go in through the front entrance and then down the hall to your room. Luckily the room wasn't very far down the long hall so that Jim and Linda didn't have to carry their luggage too far.

As far as the room goes, it was also very nice with a king bed and a large room.

Friday morning, just before 11:00 we left the Super 8 and headed North on US 41. Following 41 up to Vincennes where we turned West on US 50. 50 took us to IL Rt 1 that we took North for a ways and then took some side roads over to Rt. 49. 49 took us up to I-74 where we turned West again and followed it to the Urbana Gardens Restaurant, where Jim and Linda had coffee and pie.

From there, it was just a short drive over here to the Woodsprings Suites Hotel, where we'll spend about a month.

 It was 3:10 when we pulled up to the main entrance, so it took us about 3 hours and 10 minutes to travel 176 miles and stop for coffee and pie.

So,  ,  ,  ,  we traveled 1097 miles to get here in 6 days.

All in all, it was a very good trip. Jim is real happy with Lily and really likes the way she drives. She gets great gas mileage, (over 30mpg on each tank of gas), and hasn't given even the least bit of trouble.

This Blog post is way too long already, so I'll tell you more about Woodsprings in my next post.

Did you know that there is an old law in Indiana that states that "Hotel sheets must be exactly 99 inches long and 81 inches wide"?


Saturday, July 29, 2017

Busy, Busy, Busy and Packing Up

DeBary, FL.

78 deg. clear, NE wind @ 8 mph.

Forecast = Scattered showers and thunderstorms. High 88F. Winds WSW at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

Jim and Linda have been really busy since I've last posted. They've been gathering things up, packing them and then seeing if there''s enough room in Lily to get them into her trunk. They've just about got it figured out though and as of yesterday afternoon, have decided that they'll be able to get everything in. :-) 

In fact, about 2/3 of Lily's trunk is already packed!! 

We will be leaving here tomorrow, (Sunday), and will take 6 days to get up to Champaign, IL. We'll probably spend a couple of nights somewhere in Alabama, but like always, it's written in pencil and Jim was sure to pack that big eraser of his. ;-) Actually, I don't think that Jim is going to have problems as far as stamina is concerned, he's been doing a lot the last few days and seems to have quite a bit of energy. 

I'm getting really excited about going on a "'Road Trip". I've never been on one in a car, and don't really know what to expect. I suppose I'll have to ride in the back seat, but i'd really like to be able to see out of the windows. Also, I've never been in a Motel, so that'll be another new experience for me. I guess it's going to kind of a re-learning experience for Jim and Linda too. Jim says that he thinks the last time he and Linda stayed in a Motel was way back in 2001, just before we moved into Maraiah, their 35' Winnebago MH!!

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  ,  ,  a new adventure begins. I don't know how this will go, but I'm sure we'll work it out somehow. At least it's not as scary as when Jim and Linda sold almost everything they had and went Full-Timing. Living out of suitcases for an extended period of time, (probably about 3 months), will have it's challenges, but we've always been able to overcome them in the past. I don't see why this should be any different. 
As for me, I'm READY!!!!!

A Quote to Ponder, "One man with courage makes a majority."  Andrew Jackson


Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Happy Birthday Linda and Starting To Get Ready

DeBary, Fl.

75 deg. partly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = A mix of clouds and sun. High 94F. Winds SW at 5 to 10 mph.

Nothing real exciting going on around here. Jim and Linda have been getting things together to take along on our Illinois trip. They've made some lists so they could remember what they need to take and have already started packing some things into boxes and bags. 

Saturday, was Linda's birthday, so at noon, they met Laura, Lindsey and Anna over at the Longhorn Steakhouse for lunch. Then, in the evening, they headed to Laura's where they had Cupcakes and ice cream. Marv, Inez, Ashley, Chris, Anna and of course Laura and Lindsey were there and it sounds like everyone had a good time. ;-) 

Linda blowing out candles on cupcakes

Yesterday, Jim took Lily and went to Walgreen's to pick up a few prescriptions and to the local Winn Dixie store where he bought some groceries to use on or trip up North. Today he wants to get outside early and get a few things done out there before it gets too hot. We're right in the middle of the hottest time of the year down here now and almost every day, the temps are in the mid-ninety's with rain showers/storms in the afternoon, causing lots of humidity.  :-( 

Jim seems to be feeling pretty well. For now, most of the side effects from the Opdivo seem to be gone, but he is still taking medicine to counter those effects. Hopefully by the time that medicine is gone, so will be the side effects. 

It's still not completely decided on just when we'll be leaving DeBary. If they get everything ready, we may leave here as early as Sunday. I think Linda is worried about how Jim will be feeling after traveling for 4 or 5 hours a day, and said yesterday, that she thought that adding an extra "rest" day to the trip would be good. 

Well, that's about it for now. I'm going to make a real effort to post more often, especially while we're traveling.  

Did you know that on this date in 1966 - The Monkees recorded their first single? The song was "The Last Train to Clarksville" and was later included on their self-titled debut album. 


Thursday, July 20, 2017

Yeee!!!! Haww!!!!

DeBary, FL.

73 deg. clear, no wind.
Forecast today = Cloudy early with scattered thunderstorms developing this afternoon. High near 95F. Winds SW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

Jim was still having the side effects from the Opdivo treatments when he went in to see the chemo doctor on the 7th of July, so he didn't get another treatment. The doctor did decided to raise the dose of the medicine that he was receiving to counter-act the side effects and since then, that has done the trick. ::-) 

Last Thursday, (the 13th),Jim had another PET Scan and then this Monday, (the 17th), he and Linda went to see the Radiation Doctor to get the results. Again, the weekend was stress filled, waiting to get the results, but it seems like that's just part of this whole process. 

So,  ,  ,  ,  , , what did the doctor say??? 

Well, it's all good news!!!!! The spot in the left lung has dissipated and there''s just a little "fogginess" which he thinks is just some scar tissue from previous and latest radiation treatments. and the very small spot in the right lung has all but disappeared. There is just a minute spot that may or may not be something, but at this time he doesn't recommend any treatments. The PET Scan was for Jim's whole body and there is no indication of any spreading of the cancer!!!!

Yeee!!!!! Haww!!!!

Tuesday, Jim had an appointment with the Chemo doctor and after seeing the PET Scan results, she agreed with what the Radiation Doctor had said!!!!

Yeee!!!! Haww!!!!  (Sorry about all the "Yee Hawing", but I couldn't help myself) ;-) 

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  ,  What comes next???  Well, Jim and Linda have already started to make plans to head up to Illinois. Jim has made some reservations at an "extended stay hotel" near Rantoul, and Linda has already set up doctor's appointments with most of the doctors that will need to be seen up there. Jim had already made a "trip plan" that he refined yesterday and it looks like we'll be leaving here on or about the 31st if July!!!!     

Traveling by car instead of RV is going to be a big change, but both Jim and Linda seem to have pretty much figured out what they can and can not take along. The extended stay hotel has a refrigerator, microwave and a 2 burner stove, so once we get up there, Linda will be able to make some meals. She has an electric skillet that she'll take along and can make quite a bit in it, even while we're traveling, and I'm sure, some meals they'll eat out at restaurants. 

Jim doesn't know how much energy he'll have, so he's figured 5 days to get up to Illinois, (about 4 hours a day, traveling). The little trip to Cedar Key helped them get an idea of how to pack the car to get everything in, and staying in that motel helped with learning to cook some food in just a microwave. 

Years ago, Jim and Linda went on "vacations" and managed OK, so it's just a matter of relearning the process. I;m sure that there'll be a few "bumps" but they'll deal with them and I'm sure it'll all work out in the end. 

I can't wait ot get on the road again!!!!!

Yeee!!!! Haww!!!!

Did you know that on this date in 1969 - Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin E. Aldrin, Jr. became the first men to walk on the moon?


Sunday, July 2, 2017

Long Overdue Update

DeBary, FL.

95 deg. Mostly cloudy, SE Wind @ 3 mph.

Forecast = Partly to mostly cloudy. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. Low near 75F. Winds SSE at 5 to 10 mph.

Sorry about the length of time that has gone by since I've last updated this blog. :-(

Mike, Gina and the kids did stop by on their way down to the attractions, and in fact, they stopped by on the way back also!! Jim and Linda had good visits with them even though they only stayed for a couple of hours each time.

Jim's last Opdivo treatment was to be on the 23rd of June, but because of some digestive side effects from the treatments, the last treatment still hasn't happened!!! :-(  First of all it was rescheduled for the 30th of June and now it's been rescheduled for the 7th of July. Hopefully, the side effect will have disappeared by then so he can get that last treatment.

He does have a PET Scan scheduled for the 13th of July and a visit with the radiation Dr. (Dr. Graham), on the 14th. Hopefully that will not have to be rescheduled.

On the 26th of June, Jim and Linda took Lily and headed over to Cedar Key, FL. where they rented a motel room for 3 nights. The motel was located right on the gulf and they had an excellent view of the Gulf of Mexico from their 2nd story balcony.

They even had a real pretty sunset one night while they were there. ;-) 

It was a good get-a-way for a change. They really hadn't been anywhere since they returned here to DeBary last fall. 

They went out to eat a a couple local restaurants and had seafood, (it's the big thing in Cedar Key). Drove around the island some and basically just "kicked back" for the 3 days they were there. It was about 135 miles over there and it took them just under 3 hours to travel the distance. 

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  , for now, we wait and see what is going to happen with Jim's treatments. The plan is still to try to get up to Illinois yet this summer, (or fall), to see doctors, friends and relatives, but as usual, all Jim's plans are in pencil. 

Jim's feeling pretty well, except for the digestive issues, and Linda is doing well. If we can just get past this bump in the road, we'll be on our way North and possibly up to NC and VA to see the boys yet this year. 

Did you know that 7% of Americans believe that chocolate milk comes from brown cows?

Mooooo!!!! (I meant Woof!!!!) 

Saturday, June 3, 2017

A Little "Road Trip", Some Sad News but A Very Nice Visit

DeBary, FL.

80 deg. partly cloudy, SW wind @ 5 mph.

Forecast tonight = Mostly cloudy. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. Low 71F. Winds ESE at 10 to 15 mph.

Tuesday, Jim had his last Radiation Treatment. He's very happy to have them over with. Going in every weekday was really the worst part of it. 

Tuesday was also the day that Jim suggested that he and Linda go on a "Road Trip" and take Lily and head over to Wildwood, FL to go to the Russel Stover's Candy Co. Store and stop and see Donna and Monte, (Rving friends since way back in 2001). 

So, Jim called Donna and asked if they'd be home on Wednesday? Well, then came the surprise. Donna told Jim that Monte had passed away!!!!!! :-(  Yep, you read that right!!! Donna told Jim that Monte had passed away last November the 20th!!!! 

Donna apologized for not letting Jim and Linda know, but she's been very busy trying to get everything straightened up since his passing. Well, Jim told her that they'd still like to come to see her for a few hours in the afternoon, if that would be alright. 

She said it would and that she'd really like to see them. 

So,  ,  ,  ,  , about 10:30 Wednesday morning, Jim and Linda took Lily and drove the close to 60 miles over to Wildwood. First they went to Stovers and then went out to eat at a Wendy's Restaurant. After that, (about 1:00 by this time), they headed over to see Donna. Parts of this visit were very sad as Donna told about Monte, but other parts of the visit were very nice and I'm sure Jim and Linda will be going back to see Donna again. 

It was late afternoon by the time they returned here to the house and by the time they came into the house, Jim was pretty beat! For supper, they just had sandwiches and then Jim took a nap. 

Both Jim and Linda said that Donna seemed to be doing pretty well.  She's strong and has a good attitude about the future.

Oh, and by the way, Lily did very well and provided a very comfortable ride for both Jim and Linda. ;-)  

Now, Jim and Linda are starting to get ready for a visit from Mike and his family, this coming Saturday!! They will be heading down to the "attractions area" for a 1 week vacation and are planning on stopping by both on the way down and the way back to North Carolina.

I sure hope they'll be able to stop for a few hours, It seems like ages since we've last seen them.

A Quote to Ponder : "The Language of friendship is not words but meanings."
                                   Henry David Thoreau


Saturday, May 27, 2017

First It Was Nora, Then Lila and Now Big RED!!!!

DeBary, FL.

83 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast tonight = Clear. Lows overnight in the mid 60s.

Forecast tomorrow = Sunny, High 96F. Winds W at 10 to 15 mph.

First, Nora left us when Jim and Linda took Big RED and pulled her down to Palm Beach where Laura and Lindsey traded her in on a brand new, smaller trailer. (which is really nice, by the way),  I thought that would be the end of it, but then, all of a sudden, this last Thursday, Jim and Linda went car shopping!!!!!

 When they returned, they were driving a different car and Lila had been traded in on it!!!

Friday, Jim had an Opdivo treatment in the morning and a Radiation treatment in the afternoon. Then, Friday evening, Laura and Lindsey stopped by and Lindsey helped Jim clean out the back of Big RED!! That made me wonder what was going on, but I didn't have to wait too long to find out!!

This morning, Linda took the car they had brought back from the dealer on Thursday and Jim got into Big RED. Then, they both drove away!!!

Well, come to find out, they had traded Lila and Big RED in on a brand new car!!!!

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  ,  say hello to Lily!!!!  She's a brand new Toyota Camry LE and she only had 8 miles on her speedometer when Jim and Linda pulled out of the dealer's lot on Thursday!!

I guess you're wondering why they did this and why they named the new car Lily. Well. Jim decided that Lila wasn't suitable for any kind of longer distance traveling. She was great around town and was just what they needed before Jim decided that he really couldn't handle RVing any longer. But, out on the road, she wasn't very comfortable to drive for longer distances and she was quite small.

Big RED was quite large and hard to get around with. especially in towns and cities. He also didn't get real great mileage and the cost of diesel fuel is always higher than regular gas.

So, by doing some "trading", Jim and Linda traded both of them in on Lily and even got some "cash back" because Lila and Big RED were worth more than the price of the new Camry! ;-)

Now, there is only one insurance bill,  one license fee and for the first time in a long time, we now have plenty of room in the driveway!!! And Lily should get pretty decent gas mileage on trips.

Now, why was she named Lily, you ask??? Well, Linda thinks her color looks just like that of an Easter Lily. Hence, the name.

On the way back from the dealer today, they stopped at a Longhorn Steakhouse for lunch and had a great meal. It was the first time they went out to eat, anywhere special, for a long time.

Jim and Linda are both doing fine. Jim is experiencing  quite a bit of fatigue but is still able to do most things, just at a slower pace or by resting from time to time. He hasn't had any serious side effects from the Opdivo as of yet and so that's going well. This coming Tuesday he will have his last Radiation treatment, and I'm sure he won't mind not having to go to have them every weekday.

When Jim takes more photos of Lily, I'll post them here.

A Quote to Ponder = "You  will never change your life until you change something you do daily"
                                   Mike Murdock

I hope Jim and Linda take me for a ride in that new car soon. :-)

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Treatments and She's Gone

DeBary, FL.

69 deg. clear no wind.

Forecast = Mainly sunny. High 89F. Winds E at 10 to 20 mph.

Jim started his Opdivo treatments Friday and so far, the side effects have not been too bad. He's been having some aching in his legs, a slight headache at times and some fatigue which may be from the radiation or the Opdivo. (Probably both)

He's half way through his radiation treatments now. and the last one will be the day after Memorial Day.

Laura and Lindsey have been meeting Jim and Linda out at the CG where Nora was parked to help clean her out. It's amazing how much "stuff" you can accumulate in such a small space! :-)  Then, on Saturday, Jim and Linda took Big RED out to the CG, hooked Nora up to the back of him and took her all the way down to Palm Beach where Lindsey and Laura had made a deal on a brand new 19' travel trailer. It was about 185 miles down there, so it ended up being a long day of driving for Jim.

Even though Jim and Linda just dropped Nora off at Palm Beach and then came right back, it took them about 7 hours which included a stop for "brunch" at a Bob Evans Restaurant on the way back.

So,  ,  ,  ,  , for the first time in almost 30 years, Jim and Linda don't have an RV. How do they feel about that, You ask???? Well there's mixed emotions. It was hard to drive away from that dealer's lot, down in Palm Beach, but in a way, it felt good to not have to worry about Nora sitting at the CG for months at a time without anyone really looking after her.

But, it was time. Neither Jim or Linda can see the time when we'll be traveling near as much as we have, even in the past few years, so having an RV for such limited travel just didn't make sense. Jim figures that the money saved by not having to pay CG fees, insurance and license fees alone, will more than make up for the Motel/Hotel fees we'll have to pay for our limited travels.

What are our plans for this summer? Well, they're all on hold for now. When Jim's done with his treatments, (sometime in July), and he has a scan, we'll find out what travel plans can be made. Jim and Linda would really like to get up to Illinois to see doctors, family and friends and they really would like to get up to N. Carolina and Virginia to see Mike and Joe and their families, but only time will tell if that's going to be possible.

A Quote to Ponder;  Dream the impossible dream, Fight the unbeatable foe, Strive with your last ounce of courage, to reach the unreachable star.
Joe Darion


Sunday, May 7, 2017

More On Jim's Treatments and A "Kicker"

DeBary, FL.

53 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Abundant sunshine. High 88F. Winds WNW at 10 to 15 mph.

On Tuesday, the 2nd of May, Jim had his first radiation treatment. He will have a treatment every weekday for a total of 20 treatments. He did not however. start the Opdivo treatments on the 5th as we had thought because he had some major concerns about the frequency and the total length of time the whole series of treatments would take. (Possibly taking a whole year)!!!!  So instead of a treatment on the 5th, he and Linda had another meeting with Dr. Gupta which lasted for a better part of an hour.

She went into much more detail as to what to expect and also explained what the options were as far as treatment frequency, how some summer travel could be accommodated during the time Jim was having the treatments and  how a treatment or two could be handled, even while we would be traveling.

All of this put both Jim and Linda's minds much more at ease and gave them a more positive outlook for Jim's future.

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  Jim will start the Opdivo treatments on the 12th of May. He'll have them every other week for 2 months and then will get a scan, (either CAT or PET). If the scan is good, he may not have to have any more treatments for at least 3 months. If the scan shows something, he will have to continue the treatments but more than likely, will be able to get a treatment or two at a facility up North during our travels.

It's not ideal, but at least we'll be able to head up to Illinois so that Linda and Jim can go to their doctors and financial adviser up there and possibly get together with some friends and family.

All in all, both Jim and Linda are feeling much better about these treatments and the outcome of them. There's always a great risk with cancer, but it sounds like they may have caught this round very early and it is hoped that the doctors will be able to knock it out. It may come back or spread in the future, but if Jim has scans frequently, they should be able to "control" it for quite some time.

OK now for the "kicker"..  Jim and Linda have decided to "hang up the keys" as far as RVing goes. Laura and Lindsey, (Linda and Jim's daughter and her husband), will get Nora. They may use her as a trade-in on a different trailer, (more to their liking and smaller, so they can pull it behind their smaller truck). Jim is thinking we'll keep Big RED for now, to use for travel this summer, and then sell him this fall.

The reason for this???? Well, it doesn't look like we'll be traveling a real lot anymore and the cost of insurance, maintenance and lot rent keeps going up while both vehicles are sitting around gathering dust and rust. Jim has done a lot of research and has concluded that because we won't be traveling as much, it would be less costly to stay in hotels/motels and also save a lot of fuel by traveling either with just Big RED or even more with Lila, (Linda's car). This will also make it much easier on Jim, as he won't have to be hooking and unhooking Nora and there's less stress traveling if you're not pulling a trailer or driving a large vehicle.

I'm planning on keeping this blog going as long as I can. It won't be about RVing any longer, but it will help friends and family keep up on what's happening with Jim and Linda as well as where and what we're doing while on "vacation".

So, keep checking back. I'm hoping to blog about some of our past RVing adventures on the road as well as our travels this summer. If everything goes according to plan, we should be leaving here sometime in July or early August to head up North. In the meantime, I'll be letting you know how treatments are going and on what's happening around here.

A Quote to Ponder:  "The trouble with the future is that it usually arrives before we're ready for it."
                                  Arnold Glasgow


Saturday, April 29, 2017

Finally Getting Started With Treatments!!!

DeBary, FL.

74 deg. Partly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High 91F. Winds SE at 10 to 20 mph.

Yesterday, Jim had an appointment with the Chemo Doctor, (Dr. Gupta), and so he and Linda finally got some answers!!

You see, Jim took a disk of his PET Scan to the hospital and answered a bunch of questions way back on the 20th. He was told that the doctor would look at the scan and then they would call him and let him know when he should come in for the biopsy.

Well,  ,  ,  ,  ,  he waited and waited. Linda finally called the hospital but never could get an answer. She then called the chemo doctor, (who had ordered the biopsy), but got no answer there either. Both places said that "they'd get back to her", but never did! :-(  However, at one point, someone did say that they didn't know if Jim was a "good candidate" for the procedure as the left lung was "compromised" and he does have some emphysema.

Anyway, yesterday, he had an appointment with Dr. Gupta and he and Linda finally found out what was going on. The doctor at the hospital didn't think it was a good idea to do the procedure, but somewhere along the line, there was a lack of communication and that fact was never relayed to Jim and Linda. There was one more option, but it involved surgery and it would be risky as well, so it was decided to just go ahead and treat the new spot on the lung as though it was a worst case scenario.

This next Tuesday, Jim will go to the chemo doctor's office for "Patient Education" and then on Friday, he'll have his first treatment. They will be using the new drug, OPDIVO, and it will be given to him every other week for at least 9 weeks. At that time he will have a "scan" and any further treatment will depend on that.

There are some side effects of this drug, but he was told that most patients were able to tolerate the drug very well. Hopefully, the treatments won't be too bad.

Also, either sometime this next week, or possibly the first part of the next, Jim will start radiation treatments. It sounds like they will be scheduled just like they were the last time. 5 days a week, Monday through Friday.

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  , now you know just about all of what I know. These last few weeks have been very stressful, but now that we know when and what these treatments will be, it takes a lot of the stress out of it. Hopefully everything will go fairly smoothly and we can get back to a more normal life.

A Quote to Ponder :   "Look up to the sky. You'll never find rainbows if you're looking down"
                                        Charlie Chaplin


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Finally Something To Report

DeBary, FL.

Wednesday 10;00 pm EDT - 72 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast Thursday = Mostly sunny skies. High near 85F. Winds E at 10 to 15 mph.

Well, I finally have something to report. 

In my last post, I told you that Jim had had a CT Scan and the doctors had found a spot in his right lung. Since then, he has had a PET Scan on the 13th of April, and it was determined that in addition to the spot in that lung, there was also evidence of something in the same place that had been treated before in his left lung. He has since been to see the Chemo doctor, and now is waiting for an appointment to have a biopsy on the spot in the right lung preformed at the hospital in Orange City.

There is some evidence that the spot in the right lung looks different than the spot in the left lung. That is actually good because if it is, that would possibly mean that the original cancer has not spread to a different part of his body, but is in fact, a different cancer. If that's the case, it would mean that the original cancer is not in his blood stream and going to other parts of his body.

So, we wait for the biopsy and then the diagnosis. After that, there will be radiation and chemo very similar to what he had a little over a year ago. :-(  If that's the case, we won't be traveling at all this summer. 

Jim's not doing too bad. He's "down" at times, but for the most part, he trying to keep a good attitude about all of this. He's very disappointed and is dreading having to go through the chemo treatments again, especially since he still has some side effects from the last treatments he had, just over a year ago.  

Linda is very worried about Jim but is also trying to keep her spirits up. She knows that she'll have to try to stay strong and be there for moral support for Jim. 

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  that's about all I know for now. As soon as the results from the biopsy come in, I imagine they'll start treatments. At that time, we should find out more about how long the treatments will last and possibly get some idea of what the summer will bring as far as any plans Jim and Linda can make.

Please keep Jim and Linda in your thoughts and prayers. I'll post update here as often as I can to try to keep all of you up-to-date.



Saturday, April 8, 2017

New Tires For Big RED, Good News and Some Not So Good News

DeBary, FL.

45 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Plentiful sunshine. High 76F. Winds N at 5 to 10 mph.

When I last posted, I mentioned that Big RED needed new tires. Well, Ray, (a man who used to live across the street from us here in the park), e-mailed Jim and told him about a local tire shop (Big T. Tires), a little North of here. Jim took Big RED and headed over there and really liked the place. And, on top of that, they had a good price on a set of tires!!! 

So, now, Big RED has a set of nice new tires that should last a good long time. :-) 

This past Monday, Jim went in to Dr. Graham's office, (Jim's radiation doctor), for that CT Scan that I told you about a while back. He had the scan and then on Wednesday, he and Linda went back to see Dr. Graham and get the results of the scan. So, what's the results? you ask????  Well, there's good news and some not so good news. 

First of all, the scan showed that the left lung that was treated before was clear and looked good. But, , , , , the scan showed a very small spot in the right lung!!!  :-( 

Now, this spot may be nothing at all, but now, Jim is scheduled for a PET Scan this coming Thursday, April 13th, to find out for sure. Then on Monday, the 17th, he and Linda will go back to get the results.

If it is malignant, it will have to be treated. If it is only that one small spot, Dr. Graham says that he's sure he can treat it with radiation and that because of where it is and how small it is, the treatments should not take long and we should still be able to travel this summer, possibly still leaving during the first part of May.  

So,  ,  ,  ,  , things have kind of been put on "hold" until we find out more. 

On the other hand, Linda had a visit with her surgeon yesterday, and everything looked real good, so there's good news there. 

I'll post again as soon as Jim and Linda get the results on the 17th. Jim seems to be doing pretty well with this disturbing news, but as you can imagine is pretty worried. Hopefully everything will come back negative and we can resume out summer plans.

A Quote to Ponder. "He who enjoys good health is rich, though he knows it not".


Sunday, March 12, 2017

Did You "Spring Ahead" and Water, Water Everywhere!

DeBary, FL.

61 deg. partly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Becoming cloudy with occasional rain during the afternoon. High 79F. SSE winds shifting to NNW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 70%.

Did you remember to "spring ahead" last night? Jim set most of the clocks here in the double-wide last night, but still has a few to do this morning. 

We had a little excitement here a week ago. Jim went out the back door and into the screen room and found water running across the floor!!! :-(  After a little inspection, it was determined that the house water heater had sprung a leak and was doing it's best to completely soak the floor and everything that was setting on it! Luckily most things were not down on the cement floor so just a few boxes got wet. 

After getting a few items up off of the floor, Jim called Kevin, (our local handyman). He came over and confirmed that it was indeed the water heater that was leaking. He told Jim that he was pretty sure that the local Lows had new water heaters like we needed in stock, so after Kevin left, Jim took Big RED and headed over there to purchase one. 

Anyway, Jim got the heater, Kevin came back in the afternoon and installed it, and now everything is good again! ;-) 

Not much else to report. Jim took Big RED in for an oil change the other day. He's been over to the CG to do a little work on Nora. He still needs to take Big RED someplace to get new tires for him, ( the old ones are pretty much worn out and the sidewalls are starting to crack), but hasn't decided on where to purchase them yet. Those tires are going to be a pretty big expense, so he wants to try to get the best deal possible. 

Both Linda and Jim seem to be doing fine. The tree pollen has been pretty bad lately, so they've both had some problems with that. No test or anything until next month, so nothing to report there. 

Did you know that  DST was established in 1918?


Wednesday, March 1, 2017

I'm In BIG Trouble!!!

DeBary, FL.

84 deg. clear, SW wind @ 5 mph.

Forecast = Sunshine and clouds mixed. High 87F. Winds SSW at 10 to 15 mph.

I'm in BIG trouble now!!!! I guess Jim thought I had been posting lately, but when Roland, (one of Jim and Linda's best friends), called last evening and told him that I had not posted since way back at the beginning of last month. Jim wasn't too happy with me!!! :-( 

You see, I have trouble coming up with things to post about when there's really nothing special going on around here, so I just didn't post. I knew that I should be posting something, but I just didn't!!

So, here goes with the latest from DeBary.

Back on the 15th of Feb. Jim had a doctor's appointment with his chemo doctor. (During the summer, she got married, so now she's Dr. Gupta instead of Dr. Saferali.)  Anyway, Jim had a blood test and Dr. Gupta told him that everything on the test looked good and that she didn't seen any indication of cancer.

On the 3rd of April, Jim will have a CT scan and if that doesn't show anything, we'll be "good to go" for our summer travels.

Monday, Jim fired up Big RED and took him over to the O'Reilly Auto Parts Store to have Big RED's batteries checked. As Jim thought, one of the batteries was bad and since they were both the same age, (about 6 years old), Jim bought 2 new batteries. The salesman at the auto parts store replaced them right out in the parking lot. Jim still has a list of things that need to be done to Big RED, most important are getting his oil changed and then purchasing new tires for him, which will be pretty expensive.

Other than that, I really can't think of anything else to post about, except that as of now, it looks like if everything goes well with the CT Scan, we'll be leaving here right around the beginning of May.

Oh!!! I almost forgot!!!

Did you know that today is Jim and Linda's 32nd wedding anniversary?


Sunday, February 5, 2017

On To Plan "B" For Summer Travels

DeBary, FL.

54 Deg. clear, no wind

Forecast tonight = Clear to partly cloudy. Low 52F. Winds light and variable.

Forecast tomorrow =  Some clouds in the morning will give way to mainly sunny skies for the afternoon. High 79F. Winds NE at 5 to 10 mph.

It's a good thing that Jim still has that big eraser cause he and Linda have made some big changes in this summer's travel plans!!!

Let me explain.

You see, Jim has been stressing out about the planed trip out to Portland, Oregon this summer. He's mostly worried about his stamina holding up for such a long trip where we'd be traveling almost every day with a 2 day stay once in awhile. He seems to be doing fine, but his energy level isn't what it should be and he gets tired more easily. When he drove over to the Tampa area and back for Dave and Dee Dee's fish fry, a little over a week ago, he was really beat by the time they returned here to DeBary and he didn't even feel like doing anything the next day.

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  he and Linda sat down and had a discussion about what they should do. It was decided that we wouldn;t  go to Oregon this year, but would go up to Illinois again this summer and plan to head to Oregon in 2018. :-(  This wasn't an easy decision because, as you might surmise, both Jim and Linda's past health problems might again pop up and mess up any future travel plans.

But, they still decided that a very long trip this summer wasn't a very good idea.

Jim called Jeff, who lives in Portland, and of course he was disappointed, but understood and agreed that it probably wasn't a good idea for Jim to try to make the long trip out there. In fact, he suggested that possibly, he might be able to come to Illinois this summer, (like he and Heather did last summer), and spend some time in Rantoul with us. :-)

So, we'll leave here sometime between the middle of April and the first 1st May and take our time going up to Illinois. Not sure yet if we'll be going up to North Carolina and Virginia Beach before heading to Illinois or not, but there's plenty of time to decide. I'll let you know what the plans are as soon as I know.

A Quote to Ponder. “If you don't know where you're going, any road'll take you there”
George Harrison


Sunday, January 29, 2017

I Bad!!!

DeBary, FL.

49 deg. rain, no wind.

Forecast = Showers early, then cloudy in the afternoon. High 62F. Winds WSW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 60%.

Yeah!!! I know, I'm Bad!!! It's been over a month since I've last posted, but to be honest, there hasn't been much interesting happening here. First there was Christmas and everything went fine. Laura, Lindsey, Anna, Ashley and her friend Chris came over Christmas morning and everyone enjoyed "finger food" and then opened presents. It seemed like everyone had a good time.

Jim and Linda spent New Year's Eve watching TV until after midnight. (Nothing exciting to write about).

On the 5th of January, Kevin, (the local handyman), and a friend came over and installed new flooring in the kitchen and dinning area. The old stuff was some peal and stick vinyl tile and it was coming loose in places and breaking up in other places. The new flooring looks really nice don't you think?

Yesterday morning, Jim and Linda took Lila and headed over to Thonotosassa, Fl. (which is over near Tampa), for Dave and Dee Dee's fish fry. You long time readers will know that Dave and Dee Dee are part of the "Illinois Bunch" that come down to Florida in the winter and spend the summer's at their homes up in Illinois. Actually, Dave and Dee Dee are the last of the Illinois Bunch that still travel. We lost Gordy a few years ago and now Denny and Bev have sold their Motorhome, so Dave and Dee Dee are the only ones left that have  RVs and still travel. :-(

Anyhow, Dave does a lot of fishing  during the summer, up in IL. Then it is frozen and he and brings the fish down to Florida each year. Then some time after the first of the year, they invite a whole bunch of people from the park where they winter in and have this big fish fry. In years past there have been as many as 50 people there, but this year, the count was down to 30 or so. The weather may had had something to do with it. it was kind of cold, cloudy with some wind, making it kind of uncomfortable to be sitting outside for too long.

This photo taken before most folks arrived.

Both Jim and Linda said that the fish was great though, and so was all the other food that the other folks brought.

When Jim and Linda returned here last night, they were both beat, but both said that they really enjoyed seeing Dave and Dee Dee again, and all the others that they knew from times that we used to stay at the park when we were full-timing in our Motorhomes.

That pretty much brings us up-to-date. Both Jim and Linda seem to be doing well. Jim has doctor's appointment with the chemo Dr. in the middle of February for a check-up and then, unless something's wrong, (and he doesn't expect there's anything), the next doctor's appointments for both Jim and Linda will be in April.

Hope all of you are doing well and I'm really sorry about not posting sooner.

Oh, and those of you who called or e-mailed to see how Jim and Linda were doing, Thank You!!

Did you know that on this date in 1963 - The first members to the NFL's Hall of Fame were named in Canton, OH?