Friday, December 2, 2016

Starting December!

It is December, already!  This is the time of year when I feel the days are just whizzing by and I'd like to slow them down a bit!

The steroids are keeping me wide awake at night!  It was past 4:30 a.m. when I fell asleep, last night.  And then, I slept till 9:00 a.m.   I stayed in bed a little longer, until 9:30 a.m., trying to go back to sleep, but I couldn't fall asleep again.

My sister called me in the morning.  She had called me earlier in the week and left a message, but I hadn't received the message and so, she called again and we had a nice chat.  She had just had a lovely family vacation with her husband, children, and grandsons.  She said a mutual friend had told her that she had seen me at last Saturday's Sweet Sixteen party and that I looked well and nice with my "short hair" (I had worn the wig I received from the cancer treatment center).

Even though I had taken the day off from work, there were a few work-related emails from my supervisor and a colleague.  I responded to a couple of them, but the rest can wait until next week.

Later in the morning, I called my friend who had offered to prepare some of the dishes for the almsgiving, to ask if she needed a ride to the ethnic grocery store to buy the items she'll be preparing for me.  But she said not to worry, she can get what she needs at the regular grocery store where she works.  In other words, she won't let me pay for the items she's preparing. 

The pharmacy had sent a text saying two of my prescription refills were ready, so I planned today's errands around that.  I went to the pharmacy, then the adjoining dollar store for a few items, and the grocery store in the same mall.  I really only needed two items from the grocery store (two containers of non-dairy whipped topping) but I bought several other items, as well!  Including a 20 oz. packet of pre-formed hamburger patties on sale for $1.49 and a 2.61 lb. eye of round roast on sale for $9.36, which comes to $3.59/lb. (reduced from $15.63 or $5.99/lb.), because they had a sell-by date of December 2.  I'll do a separate grocery post, later.

I also got started on my holiday gifts shopping, as well, and picked up three items!

I had eaten half a roast beef cold cuts sandwich for my breakfast before I went shopping.  I had planned to eat leftovers from yesterday's lunch for my lunch, again, today, but, after I came home and put away the groceries, I decided to cook the hamburger patties right away.  Of course, it would have been nice if I had remembered to buy hamburger buns for them, but I didn't think of that when I was at the store, not even when I walked down the bread aisle!  Oh, well.  Who needed hamburger buns when there was a big potato still left in the basket?  I cut up the potato and made fries, boiled some frozen corn and had that with one of the hamburger patties, along with some salad:


It was a big lunch, but I was hungry!  Apparently steroids also make me feel hungry?

I have more fries and corn left, and of course, the other three hamburger patties.  I will have them for lunch or dinner, tomorrow, and I'll probably freeze the two leftover patties for another time.  There was another tray of 10 hamburger patties, a little over 2 lbs., discounted to $3.99 and I debated buying that, too, but I have absolutely no room in the freezer, so I left it for someone else to buy.

I made a pot roast with the eye of round that I bought.  I added enough water to cover the roast, put in sliced onions, tomatoes, several cloves of garlic, some pepper corns, a little Worcestershire sauce, some salt, and a bit of green chilies and cooked it on top of the stove.  I will slice the meat once it has cooled and freeze for later.  I think I'll need to toss the big bag of ice leftover from the October prayer gathering to make room in the freezer!

Later in the evening, one of my cousins called and brought over a plate of noodles (with vegetables and meat) for my dinner!  As I said earlier, apparently the steroids are making me feel hungry, because I ate all the noodles she brought me!  And had the last of the yogurt for dessert!   I am going to gain all the weight I lost during chemo and more!

I also spoke on the phone with two of my aunts and another cousin today, so I start out the month of December with the Family segment of my life nicely plumped, with all the phone calls and a visit from my cousin.  I also video chatted with my daughter, tidied the living room and dining table, and washed dishes (although I've accumulated another stack, after dinner!)

Thursday's To Do List:
- Pharmacy to pick up prescription refills - DONE
- Dollar store for a few items - DONE
- Grocery shop - DONE
- Call friend S to ask if she needs a ride to the grocery store - DONE (she didn't need a ride)
- Tidy living room - DONE
- Dining room - clear table; change table cloths - DONE
- Cook - DONE

- Wash almsgiving dishes - NOT DONE!
- Bring bucket of clean litter in from garage - DONE
- Clean the litter box

 Friday's To Do List:
- Grocery shop for fresh produce?
- Wash almsgiving dishes*
- Take out serving dishes, basins used for washing hands, serving spoons, etc.*
- Take out plates, bowls, etc. for guests*
- Final cleaning - dust, vacuum, etc.
- Kitchen - counters
- Clean bathrooms/set out guest towels, etc.
- Rearrange furniture - sofas, coffee tables, tall round side table (for reliquary), trolley (for plates of offerings), remove blue & white vases near fireplace (so I can set the small sofa in front of the fireplace) - my gardener friend will help with moving the furniture
- Put cashews to soak
- Set out items needed for the transfer of merit: teapot, cup, and water basin; fill teapot with water*
- Take out chair covers, table cloths, napkins, etc.; cover chairs, tables*
- Candles/incense sticks & holder; lighter/matches*
- New bottle of water for blessing; bowl to catch drips when blessed water is poured out*
- Set out items for washing hands: fresh cake of soap, hand towels, jugs & basins*
- Water the garden

* These things can be done on Saturday when my friend comes to help; if necessary, I will also call my cousin and ask if she can come and help.

Saturday's To Do List:

- Buy flowers
- Grocery shop -  if not done on Friday
- Pick up friend
- COOK!  Cashews, garbanzo beans, lentils, hard boil eggs, fry lentil wafers (pappadum)
- Clean the kitchen
- Take out frozen sweets and keep to thaw
- Any undone items leftover from Friday

Today, I am grateful for:
- Phone calls from family
- Cousin bringing dinner over and visiting
- A sunny, warm day in which to run errands
- Bargains at the grocery store and shops
- Conversations with my daughter

How was your first day in December?  Did you have a good start to the month?


  1. I am still struggling with my cold - but achieved a few good things. We took seven HUGE sets of old curtains from the big windows at our church to a recycling place, where they can be used to rais emoney for the lifeboat charity. That has to be better than landfill!!

    1. Sorry to hear you are still under the weather; hope the cold goes away soon. Glad you were able to donate the curtains to a good cause. Definitely better than the landfill!

      I've got my bag of donations ready to take to the food bank; but I am going to wait until after the almsgiving to do so. Can only do so many things at one time. :)

  2. Wow.. you have a busy day or two.. Try to plan some rest too..
    So sorry about the steroids.. They do me the same way.. I am battling asthma.. and on steroids and breathing treatments. I have been up all night.. It is 5 am here now.. Think I am going to go and try to lay down and see if I can go to sleep..
    Praying for you.

    1. Judy, sorry to hear you are having to deal with another asthma flare up. Do you find that they get worse when you are tired? I had the worst attack just after I hosted the October prayer gathering - I think I got too tired (not to mention vacuuming without a dust mask, etc.)

      Hope you were able to get some sleep, after all. Take care.

    2. Yes Bless, it does seem to flare up more/worse when I am tired or stressed. Up again tonight.. No sleep on predisone.ha, as you well know..
      Hope you have a good week and your preparations are all getting done.. Praying for a wonderful time for you.

    3. Thanks, Judy. There was a slight mishap, earlier tonight. So, need to take things very slowly; might have to change some plans. Anyway, hope you are able to get some sleep. Take care.

  3. Steroids are famous for making you hungry, so I would just go with it and enjoy.

    1. Yes, the nurse did tell me that she wanted me to eat, while I was on the steroids, to minimize stomach problems. It's just that I haven't had much of an appetite for awhile and suddenly, I'm back to normal! At least my taste buds are coming back and I am enjoying the food. :)

  4. I'm glad you have an appetite, it's better than not being able to eat. That's a good deal on the hamburger patties

    1. Thank you, Jess. Yes, I am enjoying the return of my appetite! Especially since the food is starting to taste good, again. The ground beef was a good deal, wasn't it? I'm glad I was able to find it on sale for that price.

  5. Sounds like you've been really busy! Glad your appetite is coming back. I know it took my Mum a while to get hers back. She had esophageal cancer which made it difficult for her to eat anyway and when nothing tasted good it didn't help. Some things still don't taste quite as good.

    You and your daughter sound as though you video chat quite a lot. I Skype with my Mum weekly and I suppose I'll have to start Skyping with daughter once she moves far away. So glad for the technology. It was so good to be able to see my Mum while she was sick and I was far away. I was ready to hop on a plane but she wanted me to wait. Thankfully her treatment worked and when I did get to visit we got to go on a lovely holiday - very much needed by her!

    1. Sorry to hear your mum had cancer, too, but so glad to hear that she's well now and you were able to go on a holiday with her. It's so hard to be away from loved ones when they are ill. My daughter came home every time I had to go for my chemo treatments - once ever 3 weeks, initially, and then, once a week! She organized her class schedules for spring semester (when I had the weekly chemo treatments) so that she had no classes on Fridays and Mondays. She'd fly down Thursday nights, drive me to chemo on Friday mornings, do my grocery shopping and run errands for me, and then, return to Berkeley on Monday afternoons.

      Yes, we video chat every evening! Often, we'll actively talk for about half an hour to 45 minutes. The rest of the time, we just stay on the screen while we do our own things. She'll be reading or watching videos, I'll be reading and blogging, etc., but we can see each other and occasionally we'll talk. It's just like when she's home and we are both in the same room doing our own things. :D

  6. Glad you are enjoying your meals again Bless. It's horrible when food tastes of nothing, hardly seems worth cooking it at times.

    Dad was on steroids and his appetite can only be described as ferocious :) Mum would be up at all hours of the night making things for him. Will you be on the steroids for a long time? xx

    1. Today is supposed to be my last day of taking the steroids. I will be seeing the doctor on Monday to see if I need to continue - it's just until the inflammation gets better.

  7. That lunch looks very pleasant indeed! The fries remind me of the home made fries (chips over here, as you know) that my father made.

    You have such a lot to plan around at the moment. Take care of yourself, you are still on the mountain. Hugs x

    1. Thank you, Lyssa. I got a reminder, late last night, that I was still on the mountain. I fainted and fell in the bathroom and knocked my forehead. :( There has been a change of plans, since then.

  8. Oh my, Bless .... so sorry to hear you fainted and fell. How are you doing this evening?

    1. I am resting. I had to cancel the almsgiving. I will write about it later.

    2. As difficult as it likely was for you to cancel, it's wonderful that you're taking time to rest and recover. Take care!

  9. Ah! I had been wondering about your sleepless nights and now I see ... steroids. I remember that as a side-effect of steroids too. I was also going to say that they made me really hungry, but I see that has also already been covered!!

    1. Yes, I am off the steroids now, but, the side effects of sleeplessness and increased appetite have remained! :D


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