Sunday, May 31, 2009

May 31

I think dad had a good day. I could tell he was very happy that family was all around him. He was restless. Dad wanted KFC for dinner. So thats what we had. We have to be at Kaiser at 5:45 am Surgery is scheduled at 8:00 am. If all goes well we will NOT see the surgeon in 1 hour or less. That will be bad news.

Thank you for your prayers.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Dad's Phone Call

Last night my dad called me and said he is pretty sure he has cancer. SO he is going to go through with the surgery. He hopes they don't find any.

I feel so bad for my dad, but maybe denial is a good thing?

He also said he has asked for Clergy - because of me. Recently he has been saying things like that. On his advanced directive he marked "spiritual" because of me. He told me he thought that would make me happy. I told him Dad it is not about me or what I believe , its what you believe. My dad must believe there is some truth in Christianity otherwise he would not be saying things like that.

I wonder about what my dad really believes. So I ask myself -What is faith ? Hebrews 11:1
"Now faith is being sure of what we hoped for and certain of what we do not see." How much faith do we need? The size of a mustard seed. Yes, I think he has that much.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Dad's Surgery Time

Well, Dad goes in on Monday at 5:45 am. I am so blessed to have so many people praying for my dad and our family. Thank you so much!

Dad is getting very good at taking his blood sugar.

Today at work the sub was telling be about her dad's battle with spleen cancer.
He only lasted 6 months after his diagnosis. I started crying.

I don't know what to say now, so I guess I will come back later.

Friday, May 22, 2009

BBQ Rules

A friend of mine sent me this email this morning. I thought it was funny so I am posting it here.

BBQ RULES We are about to enter the BBQ season. Therefore it is important to refresh your memory on the etiquette of this sublime outdoor cooking activity . When a man volunteers to do the BBQ the following chain of events are put into motion:


(1) The woman buys the food.

(2) The woman makes the salad, prepares the vegetables, and makes dessert.

(3) The woman prepares the meat for cooking, places it on a tray along with the necessary cooking utensils and sauces, and takes it to the man who is lounging beside the grill - adult beverage in hand.

(4) The woman remains outside the compulsory three meter exclusion zone where the exuberance of testosterone and other manly bonding activities can take place without the interference of the woman.

Here comes the important part:


More routine...

(6) The woman goes inside to organise the plates and cutlery.

(7) The woman comes out to tell the man that the meat is looking great. He thanks her and asks if she will bring another adult beverage while he flips the meat.

Important again:


More routine...

(9) The woman prepares the plates, salad, bread, utensils, napkins, sauces, and brings them to the table.

(10) After eating, the woman clears the table and does the dishes.

And most important of all:

(11) Everyone PRAISES the MAN and THANKS HIM for his cooking efforts.

(12) The man asks the woman how she enjoyed ' her night off ', and, upon seeing her annoyed reaction, concludes that there's just no pleasing some women.

None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free

Monday, May 18, 2009


My dad's pre-op appointment is tomorrow (tuesday) morning. He filled out his advance directive. I think it is going to be a difficult appointment.
My stomach hurts. I have been getting sick with stress. Stress and sadness. Stress at home, stress with my dad, stress at work, stress with my friends.
It is bad enough I worry for myself, but I worry for other people. What good does that do?
I wish I could be one of those people who never worry about anything. I know worry does not change things. But how do you stop? My niece says that I am "anxious" like she is. I guess worry is a form of trying to control things around me that I cannot.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Cookbooks for Dad

My dad has been very stressed. The Dr. told my dad that he is going to remove his pancreas, gallbladder, part of his small intestine, part of his stomach and maybe his spleen. My dad was ok with that. But when the Dr. said to my dad your going to have diabetes, he got very upset. Why was he upset? Because he will have to test his blood 3 times a day-no, he will have to have insulin-shots and he will have to be around needles-no. The problem is the diet.

Our family loves to eat. Food is what we look forward to everyday. If we are happy we eat, if we are depressed we eat. Our family loves to eat food together, shareing a meal makes us feel complete. I know what all the experts say, that you only eat when your hungry. Do not make food the focal point of your life. For me, my dad and our family it is to late. We love to give food gifts and we love it when other people give us food gifts, we love to eat out, we love picnics, we love eating breakfast at dinner time. Some how the love of food is genetically programed into everyone in our family.

When I was about 6 years old, the Dr. found out I was allergic to milk. They told my mother I could never have milk again. Even at 6 I was very distraught. I could not imagine a life without milk. So I know what my dad is going through. He is thinking why should I live if I can't eat. My dad expessley likes to eat out
#1. Buffets
#2 Panda Express
#3 KFC.

I knew I had to do something quick. Yesterday I went to the book store. I found a book from the American Diabetic Association about how to eat at fast food restaurants with Diabetes. It had the carb and starch breakdown for all the fast food places including Panda Express and KFC. I knew then this book was actually from God. This was going to make my dad have a purpose to live. I also found two "Fix it and Forget it" cookbooks for my dad. "Fix it and Forget it Crock Pot for diabetics" and the other "Fix it and Forget it stove top for diabetics.". I knew my dad would love these books.

I was right. My dad loved the books. The first thing he looked up was the nutritional value for Panda Express, KFC and Taco Bell. Next he started looking at the recipes in the crock pot cookbook. He was impressed with all the soup recipes. (He loves soup) The recipes in the Fix it cookbooks are down home comfort food type. I could see he was getting the idea he will not have to just eat tofu.

I know that the surgery and the recovery is going to be rough on Dad, I know that his idea of food will change from being sick. But for now he has hope.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

My Mothers Day

I had one of the best Mothers days I have had in years. I got up on Mothers day morning and got a cup of coffee. It was so strange, the Folgers coffee tasted so flavorful. I couldn't figure out why I could actually smell the coffee. On the island in the kitchen sat a beautiful burgundy vase with a dozen creamy pink colored roses. They had a very delicate sweet scent. Around 10:00 am my husband told me it was time to go. I knew we were going on a picnic.

We drove up to Sacramento. We went to a park right in front of the state capital. It was so delightful. The park was lush and green. It had redwoods, pine and oak trees. There was a rose garden and a heart retching memorial for firefighters. The sun was shining and it was very warm. We found a canopy of trees that had shade underneath. We had our picnic there.

My next surprise was what my husband had packed in the 2 different ice chests. He had 5 different kinds of cheese.
  1. Triple Cream
  2. Smoked Cheddar
  3. Goat Cheese "natural"
  4. Soft 3 Pepper Cheese
  5. Soft Garlic Herb
He knows how much I love cheese. So the cheese alone really made my day. He had various crackers and bread. He kept pulling food items out of the ice chest. and setting them on the little portable picnic table we had brought. He pulled out lobster sushi from Trader Joes. I was not so sure about sushi. I read the label and it was fully cooked sushi. We had watermelon and pickled artichokes. My husband reached the in the ice chest and pulled out a turkey sandwich and an egg salad sandwich. He had banana chips that were salty not sweet. He brought black olives, raspberries and chocolate brownies. He did not forget my favorite drink 7 - up. As a joke he brought canned sardines and oysters. The fully cooked lobster sushi was a little spicy and very tasty. It goes with out saying the cheese was delicious. My husband started asking me about the coffee. I told him it was the best folgers I had ever had. He had bought some dark Costa Rican coffee to surprise me. No wonder it tasted so good!

Next he took me to old Sacramento, where he bought "first class" tickets for us to ride on a train. Our car was from 1924. It was the only car that had air conditioning. It was 100' outside so that was very desirable. The train car had fancy cherry wood paneling and leather wing back chairs. The car attendants served us huge oatmeal cookies and water. The train went along the Sacramento river. At one point the train stops so it can blow off extra steam. Our car attends told us one time the train stopped to blow off the steam, no one knew a homeless man was sleeping in the bushes by the train track. I guess he got the shock of his life. The train attendant said the steam cools off quickly, so the homeless man did not get burned, but he did get a shower. They said he jumped up and started running.

After that it was time to come home. It was the best day I have had in a long time. I hope your mothers day went well!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

To Jane on Mother’s Day.

There are some people on this earth who should never be a mother and some people who should be everyones mom. I would nominate Jane to be everyones mom. Jane just knows how to love kids. She knows how to make them feel like they are special and that every child has value.

I was so lucky growing up to have a best friend, her name is Marcie. Marcie and her family moved in 4 houses down when I was in the 3ed grade. Marcie has two sisters and two brothers. Marcie has a Mom named Jane. Marcie is the youngest of Jane’s children. Jane took me in and treated me like one of her own. She stuck by me even when times were rough.

When my first mom died (I was 13) Jane was there for me. She loved me and cared for me and fed me. I pretty much lived with Jane, Marcie and her family.

Jane was multi faceted cool. At Christmas I loved going to Marcie's house. There was so much chaos with so many kids. Jane always had a stocking filled with goodies and presents for me. She bought Marcie and I the latest toys that were popular at the time. One year she bought me a “Simon.” I loved that toy.

Another thing that made Jane so cool was that she listened to KFRC (pop rock) with us. She knew all the singers and knew the words to all the popular the songs.

Every one knows moms are not supposed to curse. Every now and then we would hear Jane curse. Marcie and I thought it was really funny and we would giggle if we would over hear Jane say Sh**. Marcie and I thought Jane was cool for letting it slip every now and then.

Part of Jane being so cool was Jane’s cooking. Jane made us kids really good food to eat. Some of my favorites were fried Bologna, chicken sandwiches from a crock pot, corn meal mush in a loaf, pancakes that were as big as the frying pan, a pasta and ground beef dish that she called Marzettie. She would make this really good salad, that has a cheesy dressing. YUMMY! She let us eat candy and potato chips. Jane made the best homemade chocolate chip cookies. Marcie and I loved to eat raw cookie dough. Jane would tell us eating raw cookie dough would give us worms, hoping to keep us out of the mixing bowl. The thought of worms never slowed us down. We would still get our fingers in the batter and lick the spoon. I told my kids they would get worms if they ate raw cookie dough. It never stopped them either.

Later in the lovely teen years Jane stood by me and never gave up on me. One summer evening my Dad’s next door neighbor came down to Jane’s house. His name was Frank. Frank was really mad at us neighborhood kids. (I am not going to go into that now) Frank pounded on the door. Marcie and I were in her room when we heard Frank yelling at Jane. He was telling Jane that Marcie and I were hooligans and that she needed to kick us out, and that he was going to call the police. Marcie and I snuck down the hall toward the door, Frank was going on and on. Jane tryed to shield us with the door, but we were not going to let Frank talk to Jane like that so we stood behind her and peaked over her shoulder. Jane was very calm, she kept saying “Oh no my girls would never do anything like that Frank.” Finally she shut the door, he was still yapping. I remember how good she made me feel, she stuck up for me even though I really didn’t deserve it. Even though I think Jane had an idea that some (most) of the things Frank was saying was true. Jane said good things about me, even when other people were not.

I am very thankful for all the years Jane gave to me. I could not of made it without her.

I LOVE YOU JANE! Happy Mothers Day!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Surprise Picnic

My husband is being very sweet. He is planning a "surprise" picnic for me tomorrow. I am looking forward to it. He has really been working hard on it all day.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Dad's Surgery Date

My dad's surgery date is set for June 1.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Dog Barf (sorry gross subject)

Ok, I know this is gross, but I also think it is funny. As you know I have two dogs. Sadie the DIVA and Pepperjack who is a rough and tumble boy's, boy.

When Sadie is going to throw up she makes a huge production out of it. She will start with a BLAUGH coughing noise to makes sure she has someone's complete undivided attention. Next her body will start convulsing, then she starts rocking back and forth like a rocking horse. She keeps checking to make sure your watching . Next comes the stomach noises bluba, bluba, bluba . She puts down her head, sticks out her tongue (still convulsing and rocking) blubbbbbba. She turns to look at you with big brown sad eyes so you can feel really sorry for her and the traumatic experience she just endured. Sadie could easily win the academy award for throwing up. The good thing about Sadie is most of the time you can get her outside before it is to late.

On the other hand Pepperjack is all boy. He just wants to throw up and get it over with. No drama.

Yesterday morning I was sitting here checking email, Pepperjack was laying on the floor next to me. He sat up turned his head to the left and threw up in my tennis shoe. He looked up and kind of raised his eyebrows, shrugged his shoulders as if to say sorry mom, couldn't help it.

I have to say I love my doggies, even when they throw up in my shoe.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


After 5 years, I finely get to graduate from a local 2 year college. During those 5 years I have had two major surgeries, contended with dyslexia, had to go to work, and take care of my loved ones at home. I received a letter the other day stating I get to graduate with honors. I will get a medallion to where with my cap and gown. On May 22 I will walk at the commencement ceremony with the class of 2009!

I could not of done it without the support from my family and friends especially my husband, my dad, my sister in law, my dear friend, my sweet friend, all the people at Project Second Chance over the years, people at my jobsite who helped me and encouraged me, and the Orinda Woman's Club. There were some very special people who tutored me like Elaine, Sheryl and Ken. I must say that was not an easy job. They stuck it out with me, never letting me give up. I also had some very encouraging teachers. Professor Malinda and English Professor Nancy.

My favorite classes were:
1. English ( I know you must be thinking, but she still cannot spell or write a proper sentence. That is true, when you have dyslexia there is just some things you have to live with)
2. Oceanography
3. Induction to Special Education
4. Health and Nutrition for the young child
5. Sign Language
6. Golf
7. Dance with the crazy drunk teacher.

Before my dad's diagnosis I had plans for a big party. Now I really don't feel like having a party. My friends and close family keep telling me I should have the party. I guess it all depends on my dad's surgery date now.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Great Theologians Quotes part 1

Charlie Brown to Snoopy:

“Are you upset little friend? Have you been lying awake worrying? Well, don't worry...I'm here. The flood waters will recede, the famine will end, the sun will shine tomorrow, and I will always be here to take care of you.

Charlie Brown:

"I've developed a new philosophy . . . I only dread one day at a time."

"That's the secret to life . . . replace one worry with another."

"Sometimes I lie awake at night, and I ask, "Where have I gone wrong?" Then a voice says to me, "This is going to take more than one night."

"This is my depressed stance. When you're depressed, it makes a lot of difference how you stand. The worst thing you can do is straighten up and hold your head high because then you'll start to feel better. If you're going to get any joy out of being depressed, you've got to stand like this."

Saturday, May 2, 2009


My dad is so funny. He loves Buffets. He always has. I am including Panda Express and any cafeteria type restaurant where you get a tray and pick food items from the behind glass.

The Dr. told my dad to "eat anything you want between now and the surgery." Well my dad has taken him up on that offer. Last week we went to Panda Express and a few days later a large chinese buffet. Tonight he wanted to take us to Home Town Buffet. Ewww!! YUCK. My dad had two plates full of desserts. He was just as happy as can be. All I ate tonight was a salad & dessert The lettuce was soggy, the chocolate cake was dry and crumbly, and the lemon bars has a jello like consistency. I didn't say anything because my dad seemed to be enjoying himself. Much to my surprise my dad said the "shrimp was hard and chewy and the cinnamon rolls must of set out all day"

I just talked to my sister in law and she said my dad seemed very happy. I know he had a good day.