Monday, November 10, 2014

Monday Rambles

I am currently typing with Chiquito on my lap in between me and the keyboard.  Any mistakes are his fault.  He has decided that any time I sit down at the computer, it's lap time.  He's become clingier since Kosh died, especially with me.  I'm not sure he likes being the only cat.

I've got tons to babble about this week, so let's get to it.  First, a couple of birthday deets (I'm not too old to say that, am I?) that I left out and some folks asked about.  Yes, they did sing to me in the cancer center.  I had one of the best nurses in  the clinic and she has a wonderful sense of humor, so we hit it off splendidly.  We totally made it to my birthday dinner as well. I was bound and determined to do that.  I even managed to work in some Halloween clearance shopping.  (More on that in a bit.)

 Before we go any further, I have to thank you all again for all the kind notes and support.  I have been getting tons of sweet comments, and they have made me feel so much better!  I appreciate them so much.  A lot of them have come from first time commenters, which is cool.  I had no idea I had that many readers.  I never pay attention to that kind of stuff.  It also amazes me that so many of you seem to "get" me, contrary snark and all.

Special thanks go to Lorraine at Clamco, who mentioned me in her blog and sent lots of readers over here with nice words of support.  Thanks, Lorraine!  I've never been very good at answering comments.  Reality is, I'm just a bad blogger.  I have been trying to get to everyone who has commented lately with a note, but it's taking me a while.  Some of you all have been so nice that it seems like just saying "thank you" isn't enough.  A couple of you have even made me cry a little.  I'm having a hard time finding words, but I will get to everyone by the end of the week.

Since we're dancing around the topic, let's dive right in.  I'm trying to push the cancer talk further down into this post, because I don't want it to seem like this blog is becoming all about my cancer.  I still need to talk about junk and post silly videos and such, you know?

I had a PET scan last Thursday and an MRI on Saturday.  I made sure to schedule the MRI early enough to allow time for what few sales there were.  A lad has to have priorities, you know.  The PET scan took SIX HOURS!  I was supposed to be there at 11:30.  I ran out of things to do that morning, so I actually got there at 10:30, prepared to wait.  They took me back right away because they were slow.  The machine had been down on the morning, and they had to reschedule several folks.  By the time it was up and running, I was there and they were bored, so in I go.

I'm thinking:  "Great.  I'll be out of here early."  Then, the vein ordeal began.  In a PET scan, they inject you with a radioactive isotope that has to go into a vein, which means an IV.  And I ain't got no veins, as we all know.  I even warned them about it ahead of time.  Five sticks later, including two bruising ones on both hands and a huge knot on my left forearm, they decided I was right.

There apparently are a couple of very deceptive-looking veins on the backs of my hands.  They look nice and juicy, but they blow out as soon as they're stuck.  They ended up sending for someone called "IV Therapy" who took FOREVER to arrive.  She came in with an ultrasound machine and went all the way up to my right bicep, where she got in first try.  My new hero!

It takes an hour for all that stuff to work through--and, mind you, I have not eaten anything all day due to this thing and it is now well after one.  The scan finally goes off well, or so it seems.  Keith and I head to a very late (3:30) lunch so I can head to work.  Right as we are entering the restaurant, I get a call from the PET scan people.  (Damn cell phones!  Nothing but trouble!)  They need me to come back and redo part of the scan.

It seems that the vein with the IV infiltrated, which means it leaked (sort of).  The isotope all settled in my right arm.  Sadly, this did not grant me the power to shoot white hit bolts of radioactive plasma from that arm, like it would have if this were a bad Marvel comic instead of just my ridiculous life.  I am disappointed in this, as I was making plans to don a costume and become the masked avenger known as....Radioactive Rightie!  Fortunately, however, it also did not make my right arm fall off in the middle of the night, for which I am thankful.  I am rather attached to it after all.  I take it with me wherever I go.

For the MRI (why do I always have to do everything with contrast?), the guy would not even try my veins.  He decided to go right to the "experts."  In this case, that meant an ER nurse, who was very good.  He even got one of the cranky veins on the back of one hand to cooperate.  He explained to me that with more fragile veins, you have to use less pressure with the tourniquet.  He just barely tied that thing on.  He said it increases the pressure on the vein, making it blow out.  Apparently, he was right.  He's the first one in ages to get it to work there.

I should get the results tomorrow.  And throw my hissy fit for a port.  I've already warned Keith that I am ready to play hardball if it comes to it.  I'll also pick up all the stuff for the belly shots.  Yes, I got approved for the clinical trial!  Belly shots for everyone, Barkeep!  BLAM!

To totally change topics, Loretta Lynn was fabulous on Friday night!  She had on this fabulous sequined gown that she said was her first new one in ages.  Her sister makes them for her.  I told Keith afterwards that it felt like the kind of set show that you would see at Branson or some place like that.  They've got it polished and worked out to the last little details.  There were even a few hints of those old traveling country shows from the 40's and 50's and a little bit of the original Grand Ole Opry thrown in.  You could tell it was the product of decades of work.

She did everything you would have expected her to do, which was awesome.  As much as I love those songs, it was a thrill to see them live.  She also held forth on various topics, as she is prone to do.  Loretta's always been a bit opinionated.  It certainly added a lot of humor and authenticity to the show, but let's just say that she and I totally agree about the state of country music these days and totally disagree about politics.

By the way, she's going to be releasing her first all new album of new material in over a decade next year.  I am looking forward to that!

Junk pickings were kind of slim this weekend.  It is getting progressively cooler around here, and the sales are getting progressively fewer.  The season is at an end.  Sigh!  (Maybe now I can get caught up on posting my finds!  Or not.)  There were two good church sales, including one that stays on my must do list.  I managed to pick up a few things.

We also hit one of the other Peddlers Malls, since we happened to be in the area.  It's got this great booth full of vintage oddities where nearly everything is $1.99 and under.  Filled my cart, I did.  When we went in, there was a Free Box sitting by the counter.  I've never seen one in a P-Mall before.  I made a note to check it out before I left, but forgot because I was having such a good time laughing with the cashier when I checked out.  As usual, Keith finished before I did and went to wait in Mazda.  When I opened the back to put my stuff in, there was the whole Free Box!  Gotta love that man.  We're a little over a month and a half to the wedding, and I will be well enough for that.  No two ways about it.

Halloween clearance shopping was a little iffy this year.  No one was following their usual patterns.  Walgreens was at 75% off by the fourth.  For the past couple of years, they've not gone above 50%.  I've been about ready to write them off.  Target went to 70% earlier than usual too and seemed to clear out quickly.  I'm bummed about that, since Target always has the best stuff.  I totally missed out on Wal-Mart and Meijer.  Fortunately, K-Mart stayed true to their pattern of holding out a little longer than everyone else.

Who's got skulls?  I got skulls!
I ended up having one of those conversations only junkers can have with the cashier as I was checking out.

CASHIER:  Are these all the same skull?  (Definitely not a senten\ce she ever expected to utter.)

ME:  Why, yes.  Yes, they are.

I think I did pretty well overall.  I need about 5-6 tubs of new stuff to have a successful year next year.  I pretty much have that now.  I don't have much left over from this year, which is good.  It's pretty much wrapped up, but I am going to try and hit a Big Lots, since they also tend to hold out longer than others.  besides, it'll be a good excuse to thrift, since there is a store right there beside them.

I left all my ghoulish goodies in the van and priced and tubbed them up right in back of the house.  We really don't need anything else coming in here that's not going to stay a while.  They went right from the van to the storage shed.  While was working I had a thought about what interesting conversations i have at work, thanks to junking.

"What did you do this weekend, Eddie?"

"Priced skulls."

No wonder people look at me strangely.

Gosh, but I sure do love junking!

By the way, if you ever go into this stocking up for next year thing, there's one thing to remember:  Dust is your enemy.  No matter how/where you store things, they're going to be sitting basically undisturbed for a year.  Dust will accumulate anywhere in that time.

Pack it all in containers that have tight fitting lids, preferably not cardboard boxes.  Wrap everything, even things that are not breakable.  (This will also protect items made of metal, wood, or plastic from getting scratched when you move the containers.)  If you have plush or fabric items, put them in a plastic grocery bag and tie it tightly closed before putting them in the container.  This will keep them clean if the lid comes loose or dust works its way in.

Price everything as you pack it.  It will be too hard/time-consuming in a year to remember/look up what you paid.  Label the outside of the container and try to store them all together, so you can find them easily next year.

I'll let you know what I find out about the scans and the port tomorrow.  I'm pretty excited for this week.  My brother is coming up for a visit at the end of the week.  I'm having a small late birthday dinner at my favorite Mexican restaurant on Saturday.  My uncle and a few of my cousins are coming, too.  It should be fun!


Sheryl said...

I'm glad the needle for the second call for your PET scan went in right away. I do think radioactive rightie would have made money with the merchandizing though.

Pat said...

I can just picture your exchance with the cashier: She is chewing gum and bored "Are these all the same skull?" Hahaha!

Your storage picture makes you look like a serial killer of septuplets...hey, I think there's a book proposal there. Can I be your agent?

Joy@aVintageGreen said...

More hurdles climbed. Sure hope you get a port. Good advice on buying/price/pack and label air tight container. I never thought of wrapping metal but you are right, so much gets moved around and marks happen.

Judy said...

Love the picture of the shopping cart full of skulls... A creepy shopper!

Praying for good news on your scan and MRI. Give em' hell on the port.

Lynn said...

Nice long post so now I feel all caught up with everything! Glad they called in the expert finally for your stick - those IV therapy people are usually really good since that is all they do LOL!!

Did I ever tell you I used to be a secretary on a ward in a hospital? We had to learn CPR. I hated it and told people if someone went down in front of me I would step over them to the phone to get help. My duty station was a desk LOL!

I hope you get a port, too.

I always mean to get some leftover Halloween stuff but I never do. This year we all went to one of the daughters houses so I didn't even buy candy!

The Loretta Lynn show sounds great! So glad you went!

Linda @ A La Carte said...

Hoping the news is good and you go for that port!! Love that you got in the clinical trial!! Gosh Loretta Lynn's concert sounds awesome. The 'pricing skulls' comment cracked me up! Big Hugs!


rush said...

Early on, I was going to ask you if you were going to get married, but I wasn't going to be that forward or presumptuous. So, congratulations! I got married to my sweetie on the first day it was legal in NC. About Loretta's hurts a little when someone you like doesn't believe the way you do, but we're all different, and it would be boring if we weren't. My sweetie went out the day after Halloween searching for half-price candy, and the one place had scooped it up, took it to the back, and we haven't seen it on sale. Strange. What's THAT about? Oh, well...we need more candy like we need an extra hole in our heads! Oh! And let that of yours birthday last as long as it can. Stretch it out good! I always do. Enjoy!