30 October 2011

There's an app for that.

So after drinking a large travel cup of coffee, I was thrilled to see restrooms at a lil scenic overlook in the Smoky Mountains.  I quickly zipped up to the door, where a woman was scowling intently at her phone, while standing in the doorway.  Finally, she moved, heaving a huge sigh.  I flew in and realized that it was just a potty, like those in an outhouse or porta~potty.  No sink.  "That's ok," I thought, as I plunked down on the toilet~lid covered hole.  Right before I realized there was no toilet paper.  None.  There was an empty cardboard roll where toilet paper should be.  But no paper.  I clawed up in the holder, thinking, hoping, that there was some squirreled away.


So when I went back to the car, I passed a woman getting off a motorcycle and I told her that she might want to take some tissue or a napkin with her as there was no paper there.  Then I said that it would have been awesome if the woman before me would have said something to me about it.

Then again, she was scowling at her phone.

Perhaps she was searching for an app for that!

The Grotto by Bro Joe

Yesterday, we stopped to see the Ave Maria Grotto.

Bro Joe did 125 replications of well known structures.  Most of them are not entirely accurate, but the resemblance is awesome.  Especially considering that many of these are constructed from marbles, cold~cream jars, trinkets and jewelry, seashells, and various miscellaneous items such as buttons and drawer pulls.

Does the Wall look huge?  Well, see the pic below to get an idea of scale!

26 October 2011

first knit wrap

first knit wrap.

{happy birthday, mom}


folded in half.

creative tids 'n' bits

my husband sketched this and gave it to me for our second anniversary.




this is the largest knit project i've attempted.

it will be a wrap, for my mom.




16 October 2011

a few tids and bits

 Awhile back, we had to get a new camera.  So this lapghan was something I did this summer, a few months ago.  But it's the first time I was able to get my picture taken, saved, and uploaded.

So this is a turqua lapghan for the VA hospital in Jackson.

Sophie turned a year old earlier this month.  My husband made her a "cake", using a can of dog food {a real treat as she's never had wet food like that!} sandwiched between two slices of bread, soaked in gravy.

Complete with a candle and everything!!

This leaf we bought in Natchez.

It fits in nicely with the rest of our autumnal decor.

When we got home from Natchez, there was a package waiting for us.  While I was unpacking our bags, my husband unpacked the box and set out my anniversary present~~pumpkin tea set!!

So immediately I made us some mango/peach tea!  The pot and cups are microwavable, so I filled the pot with water and zapped it.  I let the tea steep and poured it into the two cups and guess what?  It was exactly the right amount.


12 October 2011

would the real results please come forward

Okey dokey, so I expressed my concerns, anxiety, and puzzlement with my counselor earlier.  I didn't know for sure whom to speak with and which way would be the best way to approach the whole breastestes questions.  My counselor helped me sort thru some stuff, and then we made some decisive calls and whoa and behold we talked with the actual radiologist to ascertain that my left breast doesn't have the new unfamiliar dense pea and that it was my right breast that had the mass.  The doc verified that yes, that was right {as in correct, also that it was my right and not the left breast: right in every way}.  So I am much relieved.  I then went back to the office and showed the nurse that the document reads "left" when it was my right breast which hid the pea and the right I had ultrasounded and the right that was biopsied.  So yup, I'm way more assured today than I was yesterday.  Yea!!!

Here's the thing:  no indication of malignancy.  Yea!!  Yea for breastests!

11 October 2011

results: yea...?

please note, this is not me; notice the absence of tattoos
"Mild fibrocystic disorder of breast with micro cyst formation and focal duct epithelial hyperplasia.  NO evidence of malignancy..." {emphasis on NO is mine}

So I'll go back in six months for a follow~up ultrasound to have my right breast lubed and viewed.  I'm pretty stoked!  I do, however, have to return tomorrow to correct something in my charts.  But that's minor.

Or should be.  I fear that if it's not corrected tho, at some point, there may be some confusion regarding my left breast.   My diagnostic records show that it was my left breast with the pea, but it was my right breast biopsied.  Ok.  So uhm, should I be concerned about this?  Is the pea really in my right breast, and so the specimen was mislabeled?  Or is the pea really in my left breast and my right was biopsied, but perhaps the left should have been?

I'd laugh, but I'm not sure if it's really that funny.

06 October 2011

Balls, Birthdays, Boobs, & Books

Saturday morning, my husband will be attending the MSU game at B'ham; whilst I take my friend out for brunch.  That evening, she is having a hah~YUGE birthday bash, with Mexican food, margaritas, and rich deep dark chocolate cake.  Yea for football!  Yea for birthdays!

October is National Book Month.  Read one.  Read two.  Hell, read a bunch!  Read one for every day of the month, or at least for every week.  Do your bit.  Yea for books!

This month marks the 25th anniversary of National Breast Cancer Awareness month.  Last month, I visited the women's clinic to have my yearly exam; I didn't realize that I wasn't actually due for a pap til NEXT November.  Silly me, apparently since my insurance changed their coverage to only reimbursing every two years; that's now the standard in care.  Here I was thinking that all the hype about yearly paps was for my own good.  Silly me.

While the doc was poking at me, but not doing a pap smear, he said, "ahhh, I think you are past due for a mammogram."  Wow, you can tell that from way down there?  I am impressed.  So can you also tell if I'm due for a tooth cleaning?

So before I left, their office called over to the Breast Health Care Clinic {that is the actual name, we take mam~management seriously here} and scheduled a pat down for me, cuz they're nice like that.  Tuesday, I show up, they squish me, and take some lovely pix with their x~ray specs.  Then I go to perch until they ogle the lovely shadows and interpret them using their magical mystical methods.

Now I am a very lumpy bumpy person, always have been.  But fluid filled simple cysts always raise the alarm, just cuz they want to make sure that they really are what they appear to be.  So I was not at all surprised that they wanted me to return for an ultrasound that afternoon.

Except when I viewed the mammogram results, there was something that didn't look like the run~of~the~mill floating fluid sacs that make my breasts so much more fun.  There was a dense pea just sitting there, by itself, deep within my right breast.  The other usual cysts are easily manipulated, just under the surface of my skin, and they are diffuse.  This pea was very dense, a bright lil piece of gravel that looked different in every way possible.  So, I was all, "yeah, let's check that out."

A few hours later found me slathered with boob~lube and a scanner showing some simple cysts.  The doc kept saying, "yeah, that's a big one, but totally benign" and "that one too" and "oh yeah, that one too."  Finally, he just started chanting, "simple cyst, simple cyst, simple cyst".  Sorta like he was checking off a grocery list.

I asked him what it looks like when it isn't a simple cyst.  He stops, turns to me, giving me all his attention.  He describes how a mass that isn't a simple cyst tends to be so dense that it doesn't let the sonic sound waves pass thru, so this shadow is cast.  I nod my head, just imagining, cuz I've only ever seen my fluid~filled simple cysts which allow sound waves to pass right thru, cuz fluid is like that~~a great conductor of all sorts of waves.  He turns his attention back to the ultrasound screen and replaces the scanner on my breast and immediately a black void with a trailing shadow appears.

I didn't giggle, or say, "oh, ya mean like that?  Does it look like that?"  Cuz the answer was obvious and not everyone shares my love of well timed moments.  I did point out that the pea is a just a lil guy, about a centimeter and a half it looked from the film.  Yes, he agrees, about a centimeter point seven, actually.  So, I say, about half an inch.  Uhm yes, he confirms.

If this lil pea is cancer, it would be stage one.  Easily removed, a lumpectomy.  The treatment tends to be a few weeks of follow~up radiation to make sure that any stray cancer cells are killed off.  Easy peasy.

That would be worst case scenario.  But in all likelihood, the pea is a calcified nodule that happens as women age.  So today, I went in for a biopsy.

First, they tried to aspirate it.  A lil thin needle goes down into a fluid filled sac and then the fluid is drawn up into the needle and the sac shrinks.  I've had it done multiple times, in various locations {including my thyroid, back when I had one}, cuz I am a lumpy bumpy person.

But this is a solid mass, not aspirateable, as it were.  So out comes the core needle which is some larger in bore and has a grooved tip.  A spring loaded gun pushes the sharp lil corkscrew into the solid mass and takes a sample of the tissue to be sent off to be analyzed.  The sound when it fires off is like an industrial staple gun, or an air nail gun {if you are into construction and are more familiar with air guns then office equipment}.

I asked if they just couldn't remove the pea.  I mean, it's lil, and the needle could probably suck it right up.  At any rate, they did take three samples.  I should know what the pea's composition is on Tuesday.  What a week!

Due to the pounding and poking and prodding, my right breast should be particularly colorful tomorrow.  Right now, I'm sporting a wad of bandages taped to my breast.  The nurse practically wrapped the tape under, across, and over so that half of my breast is swathed in wide white tape.  That will feel oh so good coming off, I'm sure.

Every one should have so much fun!

03 October 2011

My special eyes, my cat eyes

So about ten days ago, I wrote a lil letter to Zenni~Optical; and POOF!  Speedy service, they rushed making three pairs of glasses for me and sent them to me priority.  Here I am, rockin' the retro cat~eye frames.  I love, Love, LOVE these glasses.

Love 'em.

And so does my husband.

Cuz he loves me, and is clearly biased.  I think he would love whatever I put on my face.  But he really does like these.