Monday, September 22, 2014

I heart my bike

The world is trying to help me ease back into health. Case in point: There is a transit strike in my home town so to get to work I dug out my bike on the weekend. I forgot how much I love riding my bike outdoors. I used to ride it to work all the time. I'm giving myself a bit of extra time to get here, and my route to work is on a bike path complete with critters and a river so it's really not a bad journey. Gets me a bit of exercise too so hey - it's all good.
I am trying to track down a local trainer who has experience with post-mastectomy patients to start an easy workout program after my birthday (the end of Oct). Exercise is one of the easiest ways to prevent cancer from coming back, so extra points for activity I figure. Starting this week I plan to spend the next while doing my upper body physio, some lower body strengthening and walking/biking/restarting the C25K I was beginning before I got bronchitis to get some activity every day. Hopefully in november once it snows I can swim a few times a week before work...I'm looking forward to that as a change. For now it's just a challenge not to do too much and look after myself. I know me - I want to just jump in and do it all like I did before and that simply is not possible yet. And even when it is...do I want to be that rushed again? I just don't know. What I do want to do is enjoy my body and *live* and make sure I spend the time telling the people I love how much I appreciate them, and doing all the little things I love to do. Just because I can :)
For now, I'm enjoying the fall. Time for long walks with J, canning things, making some beer and wine and just enjoying feeling better. This weekend was the local comic expo so I got to be nerdy and hang out with my bestie. It's the little things you know? :)

Friday, September 19, 2014

Knock on wood

I just had a cardiac function test on monday and my doc just called to say that my ejection fraction has gone down. It's still OK, but they want to have a few more tests done and see a cardiologist before they give me another herceptin dose. I have another function test in a month too to see if it will go back up again. Given my mum's death from congestive heart failure and the many health issues she had with her heart they are being cautious with me. Yes, I'm glad they are keeping an eye on me, but it makes me nervous because herceptin is the magic drug that helps her2+ cancer people like me stay healthy and I hope I get to finish my regimen of it. I am hoping things will go back and I will be fine and get to finish up my treatments. I feel fine (well except for this damn lingering cold) so I want to stay healthy. Thing is, there's a little voice in the back of my head that won't shut up that makes me worry about what happens when all my treatments are done...and I thought I had 3 more months of not worrying before I had to try and wrap my head around that. I just have to remember...I'm healthy now. I'm better...

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

back in the bike saddle

I picked up a cold in the US but have been trying to get back to being active now that it's mostly gone (just the odd annoying cough or sniffle). We ate our way through the US and it was glorious, but we are both trying to be healthier now and get back into a vague sort of routine again. So, this week I've been hopping on my exercise bike for 20 minutes in the mornings and doing my physio arm exercises like a good girl before work. I admit I haven't been doing the strengthening exercises since before Burning Man and in order for me to start doing more vigorous workouts I need to build up base strength first, so it's a start. It feels good to do a little in the mornings.
On monday I even tried to do a little lower body stuff and did 30 squats and 10 lunges back, forward and to the side along with 20 bicycle crunches. It's silly how stiff my quads and butt are still today form those...lets me know I need to get back to doing more and build myself up again slowly. It'll come. I can exercise without wiping out all my energy now, but still have to ease into things annoyingly slowly to ensure I don't develop lymphedema in my arm. After another week on the bike I hope to start back at my couch to 5K program that I got into before we left and work on that until the snow falls and keep up the physio and lower body work at home. For now, walking home from work is a nice way to end the work day and get in some relaxing time with J.
Tonight I have to make 8 gallons of crabapples into wine before they go bad. I may never want to see a crabapple again!

Monday, September 15, 2014

The one where Geo jumps back into her life with a smile

Hiya. It's been a while hasn't it? Sorry about that.
Life has been full and fun and good and I've just been busy :)

Burning Man was beyond fabulous and now that I'm back home we are spending a few weeks trying to get the playa dust out of everything we took there. I've been doing some fall canning and starting back to work part time. It's been just over 1 week back and it's so nice to be back. I admit it would be nice to stay off, but everyone has been so nice to me, especially when I've been back that it is a joy to be back here...even tho there is so much to do. Ah well...bit by bit it will come. We had a real holiday...the first one in almost a year where we just...well...had a holiday. Nothing to do with me or work or being sick...just fun. It was awesome.

Burning man was like going on a camp holiday to another planet. That's a salt flat desert. With naked people. And free drinks. And art everywhere. And nice hot weather. And flaming octopi. And...And...yeah. Pretty hard to describe it to be honest. I can't even describe how much fun we had. The drive down there and back was a great time too. I love travelling by car in the US...everyone is so friendly (and you can buy cider at the gas station - I'll never get used to that...). J and I just got to spend time together and relax and he had probably the best birthday of his life out there in the desert. J's parent's lent us their vehicle to drive down so we didn't have to worry about vehicle problems and we really enjoyed their posh tripmobile (Ford Flex's are awesome...they hold so much STUFF...and they're kinda pimpin too...). When we got back we said goodbye to our old well-loved, but rust-bucket, protege and traded it in for a nice 2012 low milage Mazda 3. It has heated seats, no rust AND, more importantly, it has a working suspension and the hatch even holds itself up without a piece of 2X4! (Ooh! Ah! Such luxury!)) I loved our 2002 yellow car but it was falling apart and needed about 4K of work done to it...so we took that and put it towards this newer one. It's so nice to have a reliable car again. We even got a decent trade in on the screaming yellow madness, so we were able to send her off without regret. Our new car isn't yellow (it's white) but that's OK. It is reliable and will keep us going for many years to come :)

This weekend was make stuff weekend. I have a friend with an apple tree and crabapple tree in her back yard who is desperate to get rid of apples so she and I and another friend spent saturday making LOTS of pies to freeze and on sunday I gave in to my need to preserve things in the fall and spent all day canning up some peaches in light syrup, crabapple jelly, pickled dill carrots, hot pepper jelly and roasted garlic jelly. Some will be for christmas presents I think.  I still have two 5 gallon pails of crabapples to do something with. I believe a batch of wine will use up one of them...and I'm hoping my mum-in-law will take the other one. I actually have a blister from processing the bucket of apples I did yesterday to get my 15 cups of juice for jelly. I made lots of jelly! My mum used to make it and we've all eaten up the last of her preserves, so it'll be nice having some to give to my family. And eat. Nom. I have never made the garlic or pepper jelly before but I love pepper jelly so I'm hoping they'll both be tasty gifts and neat foodie things to try with roast chicken or pork. I still have a giant mint plant that I need to turn into something tasty in the next few days too...but hey.
For now, it's off for a walk in the sun and then a trip home to set up our camping gear in the back yard and hose it down and pack it up for another winter before a nice BBQ with some fresh brussel sprouts for supper. I hope you are all enjoying the fall and have been having a wonderful last few weeks. I sure have been :)

Thursday, August 21, 2014

That one time at Womp Camp

Well tomorrow morning we set out on our 3 day trek down to Burning Man.
To say I am excited is an understatement.
We have lots of Doctor Who audio dramas and music for the trip and just got the last of our foods and gear and our old bikes are ready. Once we decided to go we got set and ready and it's cost lots (eep. trying not to think about it) of $$...but just this once we are going to go and have a great time. I am feeling really good lately, and just for once in a very long time we are going to go and see something new, cross it off the old "bucket list" and go be among the mad artists for a week.

Later taters...

Muahahaha

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

14

I grew up watching Mork & Mindy and watching Robin Williams in films and his comedy routines. I was really hit unusually hard by hearing the news that he took his own life, but not because of how much laughter he brought to my life. More because of how he died. You see, I'm married to someone who suffers from depression sometimes and have seen all to well how it can take over your life and effect how you think and feel about everything. Life looks different. You can't just "snap out of it" or think about something else or distract yourself...it's not something I can even describe. Having not really experienced it myself (and being rather overly cheery myself most days) I really feel for people when they're in the depths of things. I wish Robin Williams had had someone there to talk him down and maybe be able to bring him back...it's so sad to see such a talented life end. But I can see how it could happen.
So sad.

But on a much happier note...today is our 14th wedding anniversary. After all these ups and downs I am so glad to be able to celebrate another year (and what a year it's been) with J. We've been through a lot in life...covered all of the vows really. We've done rich (well OK not poor), poor, sickness and health. We have a leisurely day to spend together...and I hope many more years to come. Who knows what's to come in the next year. I know we sure hadn't expected a year like the last one to come! I am excited about what this year will bring :) Hell, I am excited about another year!

Can I get a wohoo? :)

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Well hooray

 One of Carrie's glamourous woodland photos
Well we're back from camping at the music festival. We had a fabulous time. The music was top notch. It rained, but then it all dried up and the weather was great. No mosquitoes either...nice. I ended up catching bronchitis when I got back so I've been taking it easy here at home...may have done a bit too much, but it was great to get away with friends and just be normal. My friend Carrie kept doing impromptu diva photo shoots with us all so there are some goofy pictures. :)
It was so great to do a normal summer thing.

The part STILL isn't here for our Delica...but I'm hoping it will be fixed soon. The thing about owning a cool weird japanese vehicle is it takes cool weird japanese parts...that had to come all the way from Japan. Sheesh. J needs it for a job in 2 weeks so I'm crossing my fingers and toes that it'll be here by then. It's our camping van and J's gear hauling van so we need it back. It's been 3 weeks now...

I'm starting to scheme about September as well. If I can get a vehicle pass, then J and I can join with a camp that our friend is in and we'll just drive ourselves down the 2 1/2 day drive to get there. True, not what we wanted (I love road trips with lots of peoples) but we can still hopefully be there...so I'm putting my energy into that. After that it's a few days of rest and then back to work for me. Crazy to think, but I can't really put it off much longer...so second week of September  it's back to work. I'm happy and sad about it. In a lot of ways I don't feel ready yet, but I don't know if I ever will...and with J now working freelance it's like one big long weekend here at home right now. It's nice.

It's Fringe Festival this week so we plan to see a few plays here and there (I'll try not to cough through them). I'm putting off doing some housework planning things on the internet. No it's not wasting time it's PLANNING? Right? :)