DRAFT TODAY, POST TOMORROW: Some posts may be in draft status until I (aka procrastinator extraordinaire) get around to posting them.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Christmas holidays

My sister C was here this week and we did a whole lot of nothing. Watching TV. Sleeping. Hanging out. Rotating dogs, damn that little Teka. C's dogs really wanted to play with her too but they had to settle for Cassi. And watching Teka from across the room.
my first scarf photo
As my Christmas gift, my awesome counterpart husband Mick helped me pick out and get frames for my dad's paintings we brought back from Texas. They turned out great.

My dad painted it!
We were able to host Christmas Eve at our house. Mick smoked elk steak and salmon; I made mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, and salad and we reheated some previously smoked ribs.

Eating as good as it gets!
It was amazing. And great fun. My FIL and MIL came over. On Christmas, we went to my grandparents' house (I took leftovers) and then my BIL's. I was hoping to see more family but that was quite enough for me. I'm going to miss my sissy until I see her again...

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Return visit

My girl S is in town with her family for the holidays so we visited with them and some other friends. I love her girl B who I so rarely see but we get along so well. I couldn't eat while we were there and I could tell that S was a little baffled by how little she knew about what was going on with me, my health, and my diet. I feel terrible that we never talk now but I'm terrible about calling people. I'd rather hang out. And it's hard long-distance! I was hoping there would be overlap in her visit and my sister's visit, but just barely, none at all.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Recovery week

Monday: my FIL mentioned that my incision area looks swollen; Mick agreed. I'm not sure what I can do about it. I left a message with the surgeon's office about following up.

Cassi brought me a present. In my kitchen. Yay for doggie doors?
Good birddog. Sigh.
Wednesday: my FIL offered to drive me around to my appointments. We started with the drug trial monitoring. L had a little trouble with the blood draw; she said I seemed dehydrated but she also seemed to be too far over the first time. It hurt, but the second try was perfect. It seemed like everything took a while but we were finally done after updating the meds list. She said she can get the hospital records for the rest.

Then we met L at Dr. M's office for the quarterly monitoring tests. I was surprised that he didn't say anything at all about my neck. My eyesight on the left is really terrible; I started on a pretty high line on the chart and then he asked me to read the next one down but didn't ask me to go any further down. He did add a little "memory" test at the end. He gave me three word to remember, asked a few questions, then asked for the words, which I remembered fine.

Next we headed to the surgeon's office for my follow-up appointment. I had my list of questions from Mick. I probably should have had FIL come in with me to talk with the surgeon but since he had declined earlier, I didn't think of it.
Before. Eww.
He took my bandages off, which I wasn't expecting but was very happy about. He said I had expected swelling but the incision looks very good. The gland was higher in my long neck. He was very happy with the surgery and I don't have cancer. What he saw was consistent with Graves disease. Graves tends to be improved by surgery. I wrote down: proctosis, ocular issues can still progress, lymphoytic. Yeah, all Greek to me.

After. It's puffy. Eww.
He recommended Auqaphor twice a day on the incision and follow up in 3 months.

After we left, we had to go back to get my phone. Fortunately, we had only gotten to the freeway, not all the way home!

I wanted to make something that I could eat for a few days so I made a split pea soup with leftover ham on the bone I had frozen after Thanksgiving. I thought it turned out fantastic. Mick won't eat it. But I'm home all day without him so that works out fine! He's off next week and my sister is coming to visit!

split pea soup

Tuesday, December 18, 2012


The third and final book in the Hunger Games series was, Mockingjay, a continuation of Catching Fire. I thought it was well paced although I found the reading a little off somehow in some places. I'm not sure how, but maybe a little distracting in a way.

I really enjoyed listening to the book overall. I would recommend this series. I felt some of it was predictable but some of it definitely wasn't. The author wrapped it up nicely although the ending seemed kind of rushed or thin to me. I can see that the movies should be good but there is a lot of inner struggle that will be hard to translate into an action movie.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

And it's gone!

pre-surgery flowers left at my house
I had my surgery at Scottsdale Health Care Shea on Thursday to remove my faulty thyroid. Mick took me, left for work when I was called to the OR, and came back at the end of the day. He didn't miss anything too exciting. Except these awesome socks--free gift with surgery purchase!

Socks for thyroid--fair swap?
I wasn't sure I'd be able to eat so I brought my own broth and applesauce. I ate okay though. They had applesauce, canned fruit, steamed veggies, rice, chicken and salmon.
Mick's parents and my grandparents came to visit. My in-laws brought my crackers I had forgotten. BTW, I like my broth (Kitchen Basics) for cooking, but it's not so great for drinking. At least the vegetable broth, which I brought since I found it in smaller containers (so I wouldn't need a refrigerator for the carton.)

I was let go on Friday because my insurance wouldn't pay for any more nights. My calcium level had already come back up so the doctor (not mine--I haven't seen my surgeon since the surgery!) said I should be fine to go home.
"Dog friends" sent flowers to the hospital

Friday, December 7, 2012

Fish, books, and icicles

My surgery is confirmed--it will be next week. I've notified my work that I'll be out of the office the rest of the year afterwards. I've started notifying other "interested parties" as well.

We went to dinner for a family member's birthday. I was instructed to pick, so I gave them a list of restaurants near my office, and then followed with a suggestion for King's Fish House. If I had known the kids weren't coming out, I would have skipped the list and just said True Food Kitchen!

We sat in a booth in the bar and the waiter and I came to an agreement that he would make a real margarita for me (with lime juice instead of the standard sweet and sour mix). When we had the allergy conversation, he said they clean the grill in the area they will cook my fish, they don't use soybean oil anyway. I had mahi mahi with garlic spinach and grilled zucchini with a ceviche appetizer (I didn't eat the chips). Very good, kind of expensive, everyone liked it.

We got this cute-ish photo in front of these neat LED icicles. And my hair seems to be recovering from these thyroid issues.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

MY person

I feel like a complainer. I'm starting to think it's because my husband Mick often tells me that I'm "bitching." He's used this phrase for quite a while; whenever I have anything to say, which I think is factual, (but must be my opinion or I wouldn't get this reaction, right?) I'm bitching.

My baba ganoush is not very photogenic
The other day, we were in the kitchen together, and I was feeling kind of frazzled. I had taken on too much at one time and managed to make terrible chicken for dinner. I wanted to go to bed but still needed to finish the baba ganoush and put away the rest of the stuff I cooked as well as clean up the mess I had made. But I couldn't get the (new) food processor to process. He tried to help me and we both ended up frustrated. He wanted to know if I read the instruction book (really?!) so I found it and gave it to him and he said it wasn't helpful. I thought I should take the "stuff" out of it and use my mini-processor. And then he said I was "bitching." At that point, I'm thinking he's just trying to push my buttons.

So I was really surprised at how I felt today. But maybe I shouldn't be. I'm scheduling my surgery and the doctor's office is checking a couple of dates with the hospital and my insurance. I tell Mick the dates to find out if there's any problem--he will have to take me, I stay at least overnight, and then he has to take me home. It's about an hour from our house. Totally sucks but that's where almost all the good surgeons seem to be located. Or even farther!

He tells me that if he can't, his helper can pick me up. And maybe it's just residual from the office drama I dealt with today, but I'm weepy after I get off the phone. That I don't want that person to be there. I want my person to be there. And now I feel ungrateful. AGAIN. As usual. But what can I say? Insist he take time off work? That's silly, right?

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Five Guys and a garden harvest

After some terrible bowling, we went to Five Guys. I had a double burger with tomatoes and pickles and wrapped in lettuce. And regular fries--salt, not cajun seasoned. It was yummy. And I ate almost all of it. I didn't feel stuffed, which surprised me since everyone told me that the fries would be way too much. But I so rarely eat fries now, so I was pretty happy. They made me think of the old days, going to Wendy's for fries and a frosty, so I might have to get some fries to go or make a shake to take with me!

I was decorating the Christmas tree when I realized it was close to getting dark, so I went out to pick some eggplants, peppers, and basil. My husband or his helper had already picked pomegranates. I don't think they are ripe--they don't look juicy and red on the inside when I cut them open.
red and green bell peppers, eggplant, basil, poms
What am I going to do with all this?