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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

The "Just a Day..and a Procedure", edition

Good Tuesday morning!  I slept well last night. And most of yesterday afternoon. Let's start at the beginning, Monday morning. We started the day at Heritage Park Aquatic Center. We're on the northwest side of Henderson. The pool is damn near in the mountains on the southeast end of Henderson. Literally cross town.  As a matter of fact I can see the roads dead end into the mountains or the desert near the pool!  Lake Mead is basically just over the southern mountains. I digress. 

We get to the pool, change clothes and head in to the pool area. Yeah, the lifeguards know our names now. They're mostly kids and are amused at the antics of "seniors" at deep water fitness. Brian and I are at side of the pool with the more "vocal" swimmers. Heh heh heh. Again. I digress. 

The class before us is finishing up. And the members of our class are straggling in. Oh yeah. Our instructor is a tiny little thing. With the voice of a drill Sargeant. I can hear her while I'm in the dressing room!  Once class starts we move nonstop for the next hour. Legs, arms, core, balance, stretching, resistance, range of motion, cardio are just a few things we work on. We use barbells, noodles, fins, parachutes, kick boards, and tethers. Not on the same day!!! It is work. We bitch and moan. An yet we still show up!  Lol. When we finish and get to the locker room, there is a lot of sighing and deep breathing. We just finished moving for an hour...non-stop. We complain and then show up for the next class. Lol. And's worth it. 

Our next stop was breakfast. Metro Diner. It's pretty good and there are some good breakfast choices. And they have the best hazelnut coffee!  Portions can be large...that seems to be a "thing" in Las Vegas...ridiculous portions. Time for me and Brian to share meals. I digress. 

We head home and rest from the workout because I have medical procedure at 1:00. A dialysis related procedure. I read my instructions at the diner. No food 3 hours prior to the procedures. Whew. We finished breakfast just after 10. We chill and entertain Glen until it was time to go. The Vasvular center is clear across town in Las Vegas. We try to plan the route and time because there is a massive construction project on the busiest freeways in Nevada. So then the streets get congested. Anyway. We timed it ok and arrived before 1:00. I got called in the back just before 2:00. It was busy. Oops, lots of people needed procedures. 

Let me backtrack. We are at a vascular access center.  This center services dialysis patients. Our access are our lifelines. Literally.  If the access clots, closes or blow, or any of a number things, we would be unable to do dialysis. And so then we'd die. So what usually happens is your access may clot or close up over the weekend. Or even overnight. I call my nurse who calls the access center to  schedule the appointment. On this Monday there was a steady stream of patients. For my case, it wasn't a dire emergency. My nurse gave me a work around , but the issue still needed to be addressed. 

So finally I'm called back. Brian comes with me. I chuckle at the size of my file.  I think this is my fourth time there. The nurse assures me my file is small!  Lol. We go over my meds. I remind her that I allergic to the dye...that's injected into my access to see where the blockage is. It's in my record and the solution of using benedryl is there.  So the first time I had the procedure, I had an immediate bad reaction to the dye in the middle of the procedure...the team of course, was professional and addressed it immediately and moved on. 

I'm prepped on a table. I'm hooked up to the automatic blood pressure machine. Some nodes are placed on my back and chest. I get the oxygen tube. My left arm is stretched out palm up on an extension of the table. It's get washed with blue stuff. A glove is put on the hand. A paper barrier is put up between my head and arm so I can't see what's going on. Boo. On my left side are 2 monitors. So I can see as the doc is looking for blockages and I can see when the balloon is inserted for the angioplasty. Doc gives me fentynal (?), benedryl, and inserts the dye. I actually taste the meds as they are administered and then get high. It's conscious sedation. I'm aware of what's going on and what's being said and the team is talking to me..but I feel...loopy. The procedure is fine, although I can feel when the balloon is expanded.  Lot. Of. Pressure. I squealed. Doc apologizes. Lol. Mission accomplished. 

After the procedure I go back to a recovery room. My stars are good. Doc explains what the problem was and what got fixed. I get apple juice and animal crackers. Put my shirt back on. No pressure on my left arm. Can't even use it it stand up. Done by 3:00.  We leave. Brian picks up some chicken. I slept on the way home. Because drugs. We get home, I stagger into the bedroom and fall asleep. I thought I'd watch the news but it was after 6:30 when I woke up!  At a little. Went back to sleep. Because drugs. Woke up just before 11:00. Geez. Strong drugs. And I'm sure recovery of swimming figured in there somewhere. And then.  I slept all night. Geez. 

But now, I'm just fine.  Back to running errands today. Massive hugs for Brian for bring there. At one point I woke up to find a blanket over me. I know I didn't do that. <3   

So there you have it. I needed the procedure, but it was just part of my day. I've had it several times. It's still kinda scary because it's a procedure. But you roll with the punches. It's part of dialysis. And there was a steady stream of dialysis patients at the clinic getting procedures. 2 doctors.  2 teams. 2 procedure rooms. Of course I was clowning. And during recovery, a patient in the stall next to me waiting for the procedure (his first time) starting clowning with me!  Lol. 

That's it for today!  Looking at the 80s by the end of the week. Time to pull out the sandals. And yes, I had my pedicure last week!  :-D    Have a wonderful day! 

Procedure room. 

Angioplasty. Before balloon. During balloon and after balloon. Blood can now flow freely!! 

How the fistula works. We don't want a blockage here. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

The "March is World Kidney Month..But You Already Knew That", edition.

Good Wednesday afternoon. It's World Kidney month and it time to remind you to get your kidneys checked. Clearly you don't want to me writing a blog about kidney failure. Nor do I want you too. Get those kidneys checked. 

Yes, it's afternoon.  I've been to deep water fitness, the credit union and my monthly care team appointment. And we stopped at Home Depot and got 2 large purple hibiscus plants in pots. They are the first of several potted plants were getting for our cute patio. I also want some impatiens.  They should do well. There is an ulterior motive for the plants on the patio. The gated community has a few grassy areas.  And the back our home has one of the largest grassy areas. And the back of our house faces the street, as does our patio. The yard is maintained by the HOA. And the yard guys are doing stuff in the community every day. The landscaping is beautiful. Anyway. There is a demarcation of our "property" and the grassy area/lawn. People walk their dogs there on the lawn. And before you freak, the dog owners have to pick up the doggy poop. That's fine. I just don't want dogs nor their people encroaching too close to our patio...hence the plant and flower barrier. Also Glen raises hell when the dogs and people get too close. So the people walking their dogs don't linger. It sounds like we have a vicious dog inside. Lolllolololol. 6 month old puppy. Lol. I'll be getting 3-4 more plants and Brian will put his herb garden planter there also. And yes, we have room for a grill and patio furniture. Coming soon. 

Oh yeah. The HOA posted a note reminding people to pick up the poop. Otherwise they'll hire a company to do it and raise the HOA fee. :-{  I'd be really pissed if I didn't have a dog and that's why my HOA fees went up. 

Speaking of Glen, how's he doing, you ask. He's a hoot. Got a haircut. He was looking a bit wild. So he looks more like a westie and less like a puppy. But make no mistake, he's still a puppy. He hurt his leg a few weeks ago in a barking frenzy. He dove off a chair to raise hell and fell with a thud. He "oomphed" and kept on going, but with a limp. Brian got him to the vet. No breaks. Whew. But a bruised something. Have him take it easy. Ok. Sure. Easy that first day as the vet gave him some drugs. But after that?  He still ran...and he ran like hell with 3 legs. It didn't phase  him at all lol. But he couldn't jump up to look out the window.  He also missed his obedience class.  By the next week, the limp turned into a skip and he eventually was back to top of the sofa barking at dogs and people passing by. And chasing toys, and knocking on bedroom doors for people to come out...puppy stuff. And he went back to class this past Saturday. So he's fine now. I think in his mind he was always fine!  

Finally on the dialysis front.  It's going ok. I had a double dose of iron injections today so my energy level should go up. My arterial buttonhole started leaking blood about a week ago. What happened was after I finished treatment, there would be blood on the gauze when we removed the bandage. And each successive time there would be more blood. Ugh  My nurse wants me to start a new buttonhole.  Boo. I'll have to stick myself with a sharp needle in the same hole for 3 weeks to establish the buttonhole, about 12-15 sticks. Boo.  My nurse started today. For the first time ever the needle stick hurt. Bleah. And I now have to visit the vascular surgeon next week. I guess I'll get a fistulagram and angioplasty. Ah well. The life of a dialysis patient. For reference. The fistulagram is where the doctor looks at my fistula using ultrasound. If there is a narrowing or blockage then the angioplasty is in order....insert a balloon in the fistula(a man made created vein where I stick in the dialysis needles) and the balloon expands the fistula. No. It doesn't hurt, but then I'm in conscious sedation anyway. I get kinda loopy. Lol. 

Also the ablation procedure I had a while back has been successful. I no longer have to take the meds to control my parathyroid and the lab numbers are stellar. My entire team is ecstatic. Whoo hoo!  

Oh yeah. It's pollen season here. Let the sneezing, sniffling and snotting begin!  The wind kicked up and we saw the pollen blowing off the trees!!!!!  :-(     I though it was dust or sand  at first, but there wasn't any sandy land near us.  And oh yeah. I got some wind chimes for my patio!!!  

Well that's it for today. Not missing the snow in Michigan. It's 75 here. Heh heh heh. 

Purple hibiscus. Pretty! 

Glen before trip to groomer.  

Glen immduately after trip to groomer.  Yeah, it's the same puppy! 

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

The "I'm Still Here", edition.

Good Wednesday morning. It's been a while. It's also National Kidney Month. I haven't been motivated to write. No idea where the motivation went. Blog topics used to crowd my brain so much that I'd have weeks worth of material. Now, not so much. I'm sure it's because of my treatment schedule. When I was in center, I had 3.5 hours 3 days a week to write.  It was consistent. Once I switched to home hemodialysis the treatment time changed. And I wasn't as bored since I was home and had Brian to talk with and...I was home!  Plus treatment was in the evening. Then I switched to nocturnal home hemodialysis. So I'm doing treatment at home, in my bed while I sleep. Can't write while I sleep!  And then we got Glen the puppy, well, time became even more scarce. Anyway. It's time for an entry. 

It's been over a month. So how's it going?  The dialysis front has been ok. My phosphourus spiked to a dangerously high level. I got it back down. So my labs are fine but I still can't get to the protein level. The magic number is 4.0. I hover between 3.8 and 3.9.  Lol. No one can eat seven servings of protein a day. My parathyroid levels have stabilized much to the delight of my nephrologist and endocrinologist. And me, too. Looks like I may not need another session of sticking a needle in my neck. {{Ugh}}. What puzzles me is the idea of doing a series of injections in ones throat makes people cringe, so they'd rather have throat surgery?  I look at this way. 1-4 injections over time if needed. Or having my throat slit, parathyroid removed and a prolonged hospital stay while my calcium levels are stabilized. Oh yeah. I've had breakfast immediately after the injections. No they don't hurt...local anesthetic. Yes, the IDEA of a needle in my throat is disconcerting, but it's in and out. The doctor using the ultrasound on my neck is worse than the injection. Ok. Enough of that. 

A few weeks ago a friend from high school visited. She was going though some challenges the same time I started dialysis. Look at us now!  It was an absolute delight to see Doris!! She stayed with friends. When I looked up the address I realized her friends live very close to where swim!  Walking distance!  She wanted to go to a Chinese restaurant since it was the start of the Chinese New Year. Well Las Vegas has a huge Chinatown. More like Asian town. Anyway. We went to Joyful House Chinese  Restaurant.  Family style. Not like Stanley's. Very very good. Table had a lazy susan and we rolled that baby around trying out food. We'll be back. Enjoyed seeing Doris!  Lots of hugs!!

Then. One morning a few weeks ago I get on Facebook and find it that a good friend from elementary school had died. I'd known him 5th grade. Cliff had a radio program in Detroit and called me to ask for an interview after the shooting here in October. He wanted a Las Vegas resident perspective.  I told him I live 7-8 mile away from the area. I did the interview anyway. I did have have some local news that hadn't made it nationally and relayed it to him. How about that? Afterwards he called to thank me and we talked about way back when. He also was a kidney transplant recipient. His younger brother Michael donated a kidney. Cliff and Mike have been very supportive of me during my kidney failure journey. Cliff will be very much missed. 

Finally Glen. My fuzz ball. He's doubled in size and weight, on his way to becoming a cinderblock. It's time to get a larger travel crate. He's mostly house trained. Not bad for 6 months. I took him for a haircut. It was pretty disastrous so I'm going to try it again this week. Glen and Brian started an obedience class. Glen was just delighted to be in a park with other dogs. He did do ok though. And then.  While barking maniacally at anyone and anything that passes in front of the house, he jumps of a char and injures his left rear leg. Brian rushes him to vet, he gets X-rays, no broken bones. Just a bad bruise. They gave him painkillers. He was out for the rest of the day.  He's getting better. Get this. I'm on the floor with him hugging and comforting him. Dad goes into the kitchen. Glen races to the kitchen at Mach One speed on 3 legs. Lol. He's just now back to jumping on the back of the sofa to look out the window. He's doing fine. 

Well. That's it for today. This is National Kidney Month. Get those beans checked. You know the drill. Have a great day! 

Thursday, January 18, 2018

The "Trying to Normalize", edition.

Good Thursday morning. (Yes, it's now Sunday...I got a little busy!) Feeling a bit contemplative this morning.  Several events in the future are coming up...out of state. Thinking of the logistics make my head hurt.  The regional conference for the sorority is in Tucson, AZ, March 8-11. Then there is the national conference in Houston in early July, 7 days.  Then there is a high school reunion in Detroit at the end of July, 2 days. I'd like to go to all. But logistics and planning. Dialysis!! :-/

Yes, my dialysis machine is "portable". All 75 pounds portable. But there is so much more than just the machine. There are the supplies that go along with it. Some supplies we take with us. Some supplies are shipped by my dialysis center. And some supplies are shipped by NxStage, the dialysis machine company. I am responsible for..and there must be enough for each day and extras for that just in case error.."portable supplies".  So for each treatment I will need...2 bio hole fistula needles (pic below), 2 syringes without needles, 1 syringe with needle, plastic tape, paper tape (to secure my needles), gauze pad, sterile pads, medications, alcohol wipes, betadine wipes, sterile gloves, face masks, Purcell, antibacterial soap, blood pressure cuff, thermometer and paper towels. I draw the line at the scale! We also need a sharps box to dispose of used needles and syringes. 

The dialysis clinic ships saline bags. Nxstage ships cartridges for the dialysis machine and the bags of dialysate. 7 bags of dialysate per treatment. Each box holds 2 bags of dialysate. Lots of boxes. And. NxStage will only ship for trips of three days or more. *Sigh. 

So. For Tucson, I can dialyze the evening of March 7, fly into Tucson on March 8, then fly back home on March 9 and for tratment when we get home. The no treatment out of town option. Or we can do the all day drive with all of the equipment. Treatment on March 7 evening. Free travel day on March 8. Treatment on March 9 and March 10. Travel on March 11 - no treatment. And resume treatment March 12 at home. I forgot to mention that I have to change how o do treatment when I travel. At home I do it during the night while I sleep, 5-6 hours,me very other night. I have a special unit that I use instead of the dialysate bags.  But when I travel, it takes too many dialysate bags, I have to do treatment 3.25 hours 5 days a week. Yeah. Trying to figure out equivalencies. And yes. It is a hassle. Will it be worth it?  I'm still thinking about it. 

For flying to Houston and Detroit, it's actually easier. We've done the week long trips before. I have a hard case suitcase just for supplies.  And yes, there are some parts of the dialysis machine we have to disassemble for it to fit into the travel the IV pole.  So we're also transporting tools. Anyway. I also opt to travel first class now because of the equipment. Even with out first class there is no additional charge for medical supplies. It just makes the travel a bit easier and less stressful. 

When we fly we have 5 pieces of luggage. The 1-dialysis machine, 2-the supply suitcase, 3-the handcart for the dialysis machine, and 4-a suitcase for Brian and 5- a suitcase for me. And of course our carry ons. And because we've contacted NxStage and my nurses, our other supplies are waiting at the hotel. And yes, I'd contacted the hotel ahead of time to let them know that packages will be delivered in my name. And no, I've never had an issue. I've detailed the experiences in previous entries. 

So. Right now Brian and I are debating what we're going to do. We both really want to go to Tucson, but the hotels are filling up quickly. Perhaps another time. We'll see. 

That's it for today. This week we'll have some Las Vegas winter. Got up to 70 yesterday. Today it stays in the 50s with the high 30s in the evenings. No regrets. None. Some one asked me where I was from. I said Detroit. I was corrected. I am now from Las Vegas. Detroit is my hometown. I concur. Have a great day!  

My home hemodialysis set up.  Those things that say15G are the needles I insert into me. The vial of medication is heparin. It prevents clotting. Clotting during treatment sucks. 

The hard case for flying. It weighs 24 pounds. So with the NxStage weighing 75 pounds it's just light enough for free. Heh. 

For the road trips. The hard sided case is mandatory for going thru checked in luggage. We've seen that 99 pound package on a carousel. Who does that? Lol. 

Friday, January 12, 2018

The "I Have More Than a Doctor, I Have an Entire Team", edition.

* I started writing Friday morning. Finished today, Sunday morning. Don't judge! 

Good Friday morning. Heh. I'm trying to figure out where did the week go. Somehow I'm stuck on Thursday, even though I've been to my Friday deep water fitness class. And by the way, the instructor took great glee in kicking the collective asses of the class!  I've digressed....but...the instructor is part of my health care team. Huh. I'm having trouble typing and keep getting crew, instead of team.  I like the term crew. My health care crew it is!!

Let's start. When I first started dialysis in November 2012. Yes, it's been that long. I had dialysis techs, a social worker (team), a dietician, a team of nurses and a nephrologist. I learned to understand the role of each and it worked out well. I've kept in touch with one of the social workers since I've left the state. And she is  sorority sister.  I'm also in touch with one of the nurses, since I've left the state. She is the sorority sister of one my buddies from high school. Small world, eh?  These 2 women set the standard of what I would expect when I moved to Las Vegas. 

A quick statement on the team when I moved to Las Vegas. Culture shock. Social worker was instrumental in helping me with health insurance and getting me signed up for home hemodialysis. Dietician helped with some meds, but she left within a month of me starting. Huge turnover in staff and the number of staff paled in comparison to the staff in Detroit.  Nurses were cool. My assigned nephrologist was a prick. The charge nurse was a bitch. And I stood my ground. Lol mi was the person who had troublemaker tendencies. Eh. I stand up for myself. I started home hemodialysis training just before things went bad. Lol. I wasn't taking any shit. My Detroit staff made sure I had high expectations. There was a tendency to treat dialysis patients poorly.  No respect. None. So anyway I was out of there. 

Which leads me to my current crew. I have 2(!) nurses, a social worker, a dietician, a nephrologist, and a case worker from my insurance company(!). I meet with them monthly. I also have the primary care physician, a vascular surgeon, a cardiologist and an endocrinologist. That's a lot of people!  And I've included my trainer in the mix. It's important that they all keep in sync regarding my health. Of course there are hiccups. And the primary care physician is the most worrisome...he attempts to second guess the specialists (eye roll). 

My crew is incredibly supportive. I listen to them. And this is the important part...they listen to me!! I've been reading about dialysis patients that have an assortment of issues with the technicians, the nephrologists, their primary care physician, nurses, etc. I can't begin to understand why. But here is my takeaway. When it comes to your health, be informed, stay informed and be an active participant in your health care. It truly could be a matter of life or death. Feel free to question any member of your health care team. You know you and your body better than anyone. My crew works with me, each and every one. And I appreciate them so much. And it makes living with End Stage Renal Disease a bit more palatable. I do have some control over my treatment...and my life.  

That's it for today. Checking out the weather in Michigan, I'm not missing winter. Glen is doing well. More on him later. Have a great day!!

Monday, January 1, 2018

The "It's 2018!", edition.

Good Tuesday morning!  It's sad that I've lost track of days. The holidays did that to me. Ah. But we had a great time!  Shawn arrived a few days before Christmas. She left Monday morning. Had to be back to work today.  Boo. 

Let's start with a recap. I started dialysis in November 2012. Moved to Las Vegas in July 2014. Started training for home hemodialysis January 2, 2015. Transition to nocturnal home hemodialysis March 2017. Started the blog in February 2013. There have been 548 published posts. There are 17 posts I never published...lots of painful, lost interest, or even the I was rambling and babbling reason. Over 41,000 page views. The average number of page views has increased since I started. The most read post is a post I wrote about the death of Denise Matthews (Vanity of Vanity 6) on February 16, 2016 with over 300 hits. The next closet post is near 150 hits. I'm surprised that this post keeps getting hits. People find the post by doing an internet search on Denise Matthews or Vanity. 

I get hits from other countries. The top five ( not including the US ) are France, Russia, Germany, Ukraine and Brazil. Germany I get. I have a cousin who lives there. But Russia and Ukraine?  Yeah. Ok. I also get hits from the UK, Ireland, Australia and India. I know that dialysis patients for those countries are members of various dialysis groups I belong to. As a matter of fact, when one of the groups met here last fall, I met a lady from Ireland. Some people have searched for Moscato, Ron Isley and Amtrak and have been led to the blog. Lol. A lot of stats. Only got 2 followers, though. I'm good. 

So what have I learned from writing a blog? First of all I have a rolling record of my life since I started dialysis. And since I use a Facebook to link to it, I get the old links in memories. And I read them. I read stuff I forgot about!  That's not a bad thing. It's interesting reading about things I did, events in my life, recipes, or my state of mind. I'd recommend keeping journal. I know I've forgotten more than I realized. 

Ok moving on. We had a small quiet Christmas. The gift giving was kept at a minimum and that was fine. We enjoyed the company of each other. And enjoyed the hell out of the puppy. Lol. Shawn and Glen got along wonderfully. Glen needed someone who would get on the floor and roll around with him. Clearly Brian and I don't get in the floor on a regular basis!  And as much as Dad would like to get on the floor, he's pretty sure getting up would be a problem. Lol. 

Plans for the year?  Well Brian got me a Fitbit so I'm tracking my movement (and my sleep?!?). My trainer has increased the intensity of my workout and increased the weight of the club and ball and weights. I bitch and moan and then I do the exercises. Lol. In deep water fitness, I'll move to the heavier floaty barbells and will use the floatation device less. And with both I'll be tired and hurting, but I'll get stronger. 

My over health is fairly good, considering I have no kidneys. I probably take a minimum amount of pills  that most dialysis patients take. My blood pressure is chronically low. Lol. My BP this morning after last night's treatment was 65/46. That's low even for me. So yeah, I have pills to raise my blood pressure. I was on hypertensive meds before I started home hemodialysis. Within 2 weeks of home hemo, I had to discontinue the pills. Lol. One med was discontinued last year because I started reacting badly. The new remedy is a series of injections which is working. I take vitamin D daily and get iron injections every 2 months. I take a med to control my calcium and a med to control my phosphourus.  Kidneys control a whole lot and not having them creates a specific dance with meds and nutrition. Get those kidneys checked! 

Well. That's it for today. Oh future plans?  We're trying to figure out the logistics to taking the pacific coast train ride from LA to Seatlle with my dialysis paraphernalia. We'll figure it out!  If you're in one of those cold weather zones stay warm!  And happy new year!!!

Sitting on Dad's lap. 

Sleepin on my legs.  I'm stuck now! 

My Fitbit. 

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

The "The Christmas Recap", edition.

Good Tuesday morning!  Whew! We finally made it past Christmas Day. Now it's the run up to New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. And counting down the days until Shawn leaves. /Cry.  Anyway. We'll enjoy every moment until then. 

So how is it going?  Well right now I'm in the bedroom listening to the puppy trying to get into the room. Based on previous experiences with puppies, we limit where he can go in the house. All bedrooms and bathrooms are off limits. He has discovered he can open some bedroom doors. Anyway. We get up Christmas morning. Brian walks the dog, he and I have our Christmas coffee (coffee with Baileys), Dad lets us know he's up and we wait for Shawn. She gets up soon enough. We play Christmas music and pass out the gifts. Glen was the one that made out with all the presents this year. Lol. I purchased 2 toys early on and Shawn got him a toy. Saturday Brian and I went to Petco and guess what?  The toys were on sale!!  I don't know how many I bought...maybe 7,8,9?  Lol. Anyway. We put all of his toys in a gift bag. I put the bag on the floor and let him go at it. His head went in the   bag and the tail wagged!  He eventually tipped the bag over and all of the toys spilled out. He entertained himself with his toys for the next 45 minutes!  He did that one toy in his mouth and push or roll another toy around thing. Every now and then he'd bring a toy over to one of us to play tug, fetch or keep away. And that was enough excitement and activity that he crashed and burned for a good part of the day!  And I mean he went and crashed in his crate!!!  Lol lol. 

I got Brian a bunch of shirts and a gift card from Dillard's. He lost some weight and his clothes were ... big. Lol. Shawn had purchased a new computer. So Brian and I paid for the extras, at her request. We went to the Microsoft store at Fashion Show mall. Made the Apple Store look like amateurs. And the MS Surface pro. Wow. So light. Makes our laptops look like tanks. :-(  Dad wanted and received a new wallet and somehow a gift card to his favorite store got in the wallet. I asked for and received slippers..the tile floor is cold, a humidifier..the desert is dry, and a's waterproof and can go into the pool with me!  It was a nice Christmas and we had pretty much agreed that the new house with the new stove, oven and dishwasher was the real Christmas gift for the family. <3  Loving my kitchen! 

We finally mastered the art of a small dinner. I have to add that we had a few hiccups. So. We had a rib eye roast, greens, cornbread, fancy rice and potato salad. Potato salad was made the day before. I must say that it takes me hours to make the potato salad. Brian and Shawn helped. Took less than 2 hours!!!!!  Brian thought he forgot an ingredient. Rushed to the grocery store to get it, and the when he got home he found the forgotten item (!).  Oops!  

Christmas Day, I planned to start the greens at a certain time, then I realized he'd purchased bunches of greens instead of the packages. Oops!  These babies needed to be cleaned and cut. Time to make the fancy rice. Had the onions and celery and chives. Somehow we lost the mushrooms.  Oops!  Ah well. I just added thyme and garlic powder instead. And finally the rib eye roast. 

The rib eye roast!  Brian ordered it a few weeks ago. And let me preface this with Brian can cook a roast and steaks to rival any steak house. So a rib eye roast sounded right and good. He ordered a 5 bone roast. Sounded good to me. He picks up the roast Saturday afternoon. When he returns home he calls me to the kitchen to see his roast. Whoa!!!  That thing was huge. HUGE. Oops!! Lol lol. Fred Flintnstone huge. Lol lol lol. We could have fed our entire cul de sac. Lol lol. Anyway. He started cooking it in the morning. And he had a precise method. And you know what? He cooked this huge rib eye roast to perfection. Cooked it medium and it was tasty. Yum. And we have a lot of leftover roast!  Lol. 

I did dialysis treatment Christmas Eve night. The blood leak sensor went off, but that was because I moved and pulled on the little cord. Brian reset it and we went back to sleep. We planned to do treatment Christmas night (right), but everyone was tired. We'll do it tonight. I guess if I have to do dialysis, I can do it on my terms, rather than being tethered to a location and time and rigid schedule. Dialysis is hard enough as it is. Ugh. I hate dialysis. I hate living like this. But I guess the alternative is no alternative. Lol. Well this paragraph went off the rails. I'm doing the best I can. 

Today we're finally going to see Star Wars. And Brian wants to use his Dillards card. And Shawn is giving him a mini Dillards shopping spree. Nice to have a kid who now has a few coins!  Lol. And I'll do treatment early. I am "off schedule" sort of. Deep water fitness is tomorrow at 8AM. I need to have the needles out of me for 8 hours to get into the pool. The scabs need to form so I can swim. I guess one day I'll go over bandaging and stuff after treatment. And. Shawn and I need manicures and pedicures!  

That's it for today!  Enjoy your day after Christmas. And the rest of the week!  Oh yeah. Dad went to the hot tub on Christmas Day. He just wanted y'all to know that!  ;-D