Friday, June 29, 2012

Feeling better

It's not quite the peaches and cream that some other week 3's have been (but boy are the peaches and nectarines and plums and pluots and strawberries and raspberries and blackberries and blueberries all amazing in the market right now), but I have been gradually feeling a bit better every day this week.  And I'm feeling well enough now that I'm starting to think about doing some fun stuff.  And about good eating again.

On the topic of good eats, the latest batch of chocolate ice cream is nearly gone, so I'm starting to think about what's next.  Likely some berry sorbet.  While I'm probably more fond in general of raspberries or blackberries for that, the strawberries we bought at the farmers market this afternoon were the best strawberries we've had all year, so that may win out.  The pint is already gone.  I hope that farm is back at the Saturday market so that we can get more.  A few other interesting observations with respect to berries and cream: 1) We tried raspberry sauce with the chocolate ice cream.  Interesting, but not as good as the strawberry sauce.  We haven't yet tried a blackberry sauce, but we might.  2) Although the chocolate ice cream is great with strawberry sauce, we actually found that the strawberries just by themselves straight up with the chocolate ice cream are somewhat disappointing.  Which was a very surprising discovery.

I'm also back in the mood for pie.  Tonight I made a raspberry/blackberry pie (with a handful of blueberries thrown in to fill things out a bit) that I'm delivering tomorrow to someone at work, sort of in exchange for him giving me his unused Kindle (they had given them out to every one as a holiday bonus last year).  After initially being somewhat skeptical, I've grown somewhat fond of my Kindle, and it's not the easiest thing to share between two people if you both want to be reading something, and Lorien decided she wanted one too.  I'm trying to decide what the next pie will be.  I want to get a number of more berry pies in (esp. once the olallieberries arrive), but I'm thinking of perhaps a peach/ginger pie next.

I finally went to the dermatologist today.  Probably I should've done it a week ago, when the rash was really bad.  By now it's actually pretty significantly subsided, although I've been getting a bit uneasy about the fact that it's still spreading somewhat to some new places.  Despite what I said earlier, I think that it's not from poison oak.  I don't think it's from any internal allergic reaction given the pattern, but really I don't have a clue what it's from.  Neither does the dermatologist.  Nevertheless, he gave me a somewhat stronger (prescription) ointment to use.  So hopefully it'll all be gone in the not too distant future.  It's still a bit itchy, but way less than before.

Lorien and Dylan both came back from Toronto with colds, which kind of sucks.  But the good news is that both of them were much improved today, so hopefully the family will be all good and healthy for a reasonable portion of my week 3, and we can take advantage of the time before cycle 7 starts.

Okay, it's late, I ought to get to bed.  Just wanted to let people know that things aren't as gloomy any more as they were as of my previous post.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Things are getting harder

Wow, I see it's been an entire cycle since I've blogged for real.  I guess what happened was that at the end of the previous cycle I was feeling good and having fun and doing stuff and generally being too busy to blog.  But then at the beginning of the next cycle, I was feeling like crap, and didn't feel up to blogging.

I'll later try to fill in some of the fun stuff from the end of cycle 5, but the main item worth noting from my current perspective is that the beginnings of the cycles are getting harder.  Cycle 5 was notably worse in the beginning than cycle 4, and cycle 6 was harder still.  I suppose that some of the side effects are cumulative.  Which has me not particularly looking forward to the beginnings of cycles 7 and 8.  Some of it has been stomach cramps, but my biggest issue has been an overall lack of energy, sometimes bordering on total exhaustion.

Part of the tiredness may be directly related to chemo, but part of it is I think just overall sleep deprivation.  I had settled previously into a pattern where I was using some sleep meds at the beginning of the cycle, but keeping things under control and getting off of them by the end of the cycle.  For various reasons, that didn't happen in cycle 5.  So by the time cycle 6 rolled around and I got past the Prednisone span where they are really needed, I had been on some sleep meds for nearly a month straight.  Which I don't think is good for me -- I think my body needs some break from them.  Which I'm trying to get now, but a side effect is that I'm not sleeping well.

Lorien and Dylan are in Toronto visiting the grandparents (and going to Lorien's cousin Rebekkah's bat mitzvah), and I had grand plans for the week.  I had hoped to take advantage of the free time afforded by not having any child care responsibilities to both do all sorts of fun stuff with friends, as well as get done a whole bunch of tasks that I've been putting off.  But I ended up spending the vast majority of the week just sitting (or lying) about doing nothing.  That's not entirely true --  I did manage to see some friends and do some somewhat fun things over the past few days, but I was kind of tired and spacey for most of it.  And most of the tasks on my to do list are still not done, although I was able to tick a few of them off today in an unexpected burst of energy.  Which was later followed by exhaustion, which is somewhat what I'm feeling right now.  So I hope this isn't too rambling of a post.

The other complicating and annoying factor is that for the past week now I've had a rash on my legs.  It looks like it might be poison oak, but I really can't figure out how I would have gotten it.  I'm pondering trying to get an appointment with a dermatologist -- I'm not particularly satisfied with the speed (or lack thereof) with which it's resolving itself, and perhaps there's some prescription remedy that might be more helpful than the over the counter products I'm currently using.

So that's where things stand right now.  Sorry if this sounds kind of grumpy.  I'd probably sound less grumpy if I wasn't so tired, but I really wanted to get something written before going to bed.  I was worried that if I put it off yet another day, it wouldn't happen tomorrow either, and then Lorien and Dylan are back, and then things will be getting busy and hectic again, perhaps leading to more delay.

It's not all bad, though.  Just before writing this I had some yummy chocolate ice cream and strawberry sauce (both homemade), which was quite satisfying.  I'm hoping that my energy level rises by week 3 and I can make some more yummy treats.  Both stone fruits and berries are now amazing and plentiful at the market.  Pie and/or sorbet may be in the future.

And the tail end of last cycle was great.  More about that later when I have the time.  For now just ponder words like armagnac, blueberry pie, and Monterey.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

I'm fine

I didn't quite realize it had been this long since a post.  I'm trying not to get to bed too late, and not to use the computer too much right before bed (although I'm often failing on both accounts), so once again today will be a day where I had planned to blog but didn't follow through.  But I didn't want any of my regular readership to think that no news was bad news.  I'm fine and will try to let y'all know what's been up soon (but realistically it probably won't happen tomorrow).