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Concerned Citizen and a Serial Entrepreneur wrapped in a progressive democratic soul longing for us all to get along.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Today is Wednesday, August 31st

It's the last day of the month and we're 2 days closer to Stanford. I'm apprehensive and anxious. It's been quite a week... I was just finishing my blog Sat. nite when the bed shook and I realized it wasn't Riley running in his sleep. It was an earthquake! Albeit a mild one considering... I woke T up to acknowledge it and as he rolled over I went into the bathroom to assess any damage. Instead because of Tracy's cunning our home just rolled with it... I felt so safe because our home was so solid and once again I cherished the man who built it.

I'm listening to Billy Joel... he just sang my favorite "I'm in a New York State of Mind" as T rests next to me and Riley is sprawled across our bed....71 lbs of love.

Anyway, lots of momentous events last week...freak East coast earthquake; Hurricane Irene; arrival of Johnny's Alaskan salmon; Steve Jobs resigned; Bill's wife succumbed to the Big C; Dean passed away after being cold cocked by his future son-in-law - unbelievable!!! and still we go on... at last there is nothing else but to acknowledge, commemmorate and keep on moving forward as we memorialize the past and live the present and hope for the future....

Please keep the healing white light incoming ...

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Today is Tuesday, August 30th

A couple days since I've written anything... I've been collecting my thoughts and gathering my senses. I realized as we left Dr. Wu's office late this afternoon, that I had taken a big breath and then, a huge sigh... lots of shallow breathing and fear have been my normal lately and today, finally after meeting with Dr. Wu again, I feel like there is life after all. He's so approachable, answering the questions we haven't even asked. He answers every question thoughtfully and directly. I keep asking why T has to continue with more chemo and why his platelet count is so low? Very simply: T's bone marrow is very slow to recover...it's taken a lot longer for him to bounce back and now he's "off the farm".. he's deviated from the protocol so, all bets are off as to how his treatment will continue. Since so much time has elapsed between the last phase & the next phase there's no telling how T will fare. Dr. Wu says the question that needs to be answered is Quality VS Quantity? Does T take it easy & go with a chemo light or sacrifice quality time for hopefully more years? When Dr. Wu mentioned 9 years vs 10 years; I took a big breath. All of a sudden, we got our lives back. We were talking about years, not months or even days. I can't voice how relieved I feel. I've got a spring in my step and hope in my heart.

We meet with Bruno on Friday. T has no recollection of how low he got or how hard he was hit. I guess that's a good thing. He'll have to make the decision about whether he wants to continue with chemo when his body is ready... who knows when that will be... in the meantime, we'll just coast & love living together here on the central coast... together that's the key.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Today is Saturday, August 27th

This month has flown by altho' we still do have a few days left. We made a few calls today using FaceTime on the iPad. What an amazing tool and so easy to use. With the simple addition of an email address to Favorites on an iPad or iPhone; and a touch to that email on FaceTime, the phone starts ringing... and then, you're connected and able to see the party you've called. How cool is that? What vision Steve has!!!

Today my honey awoke tired so, we walked slowly around the neighborhood. He did extend our walk by another block so, we walked all the way to Appleton and back. The rest of the day we took it slow and easy. I did some work and even used my Borders credit by downloading their eReader app, Kobo, and then, choosing several free books and 4 purchased books to reside on my iPad. Now I'll see whether I like to read on the tablet. I do love reading books. There's just something about turning a real page and gauging the progress I've made as I wade through the telling of the story to the end and then, the tangible finality of closing the book after I've consumed it. I've always loved to read. My daddy gave me my love of language and the beauty of a tale as told in a book. I can remember daddy sitting in his overstuffed chair with we 3 surrounding him or me on his lap as he read aloud to us.... I can almost remember the way he smelled and how sturdy he was and so eager to share a tale with his children. Those are some of my fondest memories of the time I spent with my daddy.

Interesting that lately I'm immersed in memories. Today I reflected on some of my early experiences with Tracy and tonight, Simon and Garfunkel guided us through the turbulent 60's- 70's on a KQED fund drive. Nostalgia with a few tears...Life is living the memories and then, looking back and treasuring the interludes of the past...

Jayne & Lou are on their way here after an evening with Shakespeare Santa Cruz. Johnny's fabulous Alaskan salmon will find it's way over the hill. Love to all and to all a good night...

Today is Friday, August 26th

Life is good and kinda crazy and the good news is we're still here... we're still walking around the neighborhood first thing. It's a great way to start the day and it satisfies Riley for a couple hours. Added benefit: We stay up on what's happening and we stay regular...who could ask for anything more?

Thursday was a blur...ending with a spur of the moment viewing of "The Help" with Linda & Jim and then dinner for 4 at Bittersweet. What fun! The Help was a fabulous book and the movie followed the book pretty closely. I was very glad to have seen it. Usually if I've read the book, I'm disappointed. The acting was great and I keep reflecting on the message. Good movie to remind us of the struggles of our youth. The MLK sculpture ( why wasn't an American sculptor commissioned to produce the statue?) was supposed to be dedicated this weekend and the ceremony has been postponed because of Irene's impending arrival. What a crazy week for the East Coast!!! Earlier this week, they experienced an earthquake centered in Virginia that damaged the Washington Memorial and was felt all the way up and down the coast caused by an unknown fault! Talk about a crazy week!!!

Today upon our return home from our morning walk around, the doorbell rang. FedEx delivered Johnny's treat: One of the Alaskan Salmon he'd caught fresh out of the water yesterday. Amazing!!!
After lunch with Gini; I showed property & I've been catching up the rest of the evening.
Tracy's neutraphil count rose from 1.5 to 1.9!!! Altho' he still needed platelets...
All is well.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Today is Wednesday, August 24th

Saddened by the news today that Steve Jobs has resigned from Apple.  The news caught me by surprise and brought tears to my eyes.... wonder what it means for Steve?  Apple will survive... will Steve?  I wish him well and hope that he has found peace...

I did 3 tours @Apple over a period of 15 years starting in '88 and leaving for the last time in '03.  At one point I'd been approached about running search reporting directly to Steve.  I declined to even interview cause I'd just met T and I knew I wanted a life with him more than a career at Apple.  Instead much later, I was meeting the twins in the cafe prior to interviewing for a contract recruiting gig... extremely hung over cause I'd spent the prior evening in a restaurant in Palo Alto with a bunch of head hunters eating dinner & drinking Grand Marnier as we watched the befuddling Bush-Gore presidential election results.  We drank out of frustration and fear.  Hence, I was blind the next day as I stood in front of the Miso soup trying to decide what would help clear my head, I was jostled out of the way... Steve was trying to access the soup... as he helped himself, Mary Ann introduced me & told him I was looking at coming back to Apple.  When he asked me why I wouldn't; I replied that I didn't think they could pay me what I wanted.  Steve said it was a good time to get stock options and I said I guessed he'd know that better than anyone.  He finally left as I took a big breath... and took a leap... back at Apple yet again, the perennial retread.  Di reminded me and recounted one of her memories... lots of folks recalling Steve memories..

One more sticks out about the power of Steve.  On my last tour, Steve called a communication meeting and we witnessed his genius once again.  As Steve explained that profit sharing was going to be eliminated, you could have heard a pin drop except for the  engineers calculating what that translated to in real dollars... and then, Steve introduced the original iPod... available immediately to all employees at a DISCOUNT to thundering applause!!!  I was standing in the audience waiting for a backlash (I was acting HR Director for Software) and instead the assembly erupted in laughter and applause!!!  Only Steve Jobs could have pulled that one off and I shook my head in wonder....

Lots of business starting to roll back in at a nice steady pace.  I'm getting to spend some quality time with my honey as we walk around our wonderful neighborhood...  Protein shakes, fresh organic veggie juices keep us going...

Life goes on and I'm reminded constantly that there's nothing so constant as change...
Good luck Steve and thanks for the memories!!!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Today is Tuesday, August 23rd

In the wee small hours of the morning... mortality smacks me in the face.  A dear friend's wife lost her fight against the Big C last evening.  I feel his loss in a way that I've never experienced before.  I will call him this morning and offer help and my deepest felt sympathy and then, I resolve to shake this gloom that's taken over me.  I want to be with T and share the time that we have... not escape.  We need to walk together and share the beauty of what is.

Life is pretty strange sometimes and NOT what we expect but I guess it's those weird unexplained and yes, at times unwanted episodes that shape who we are and what we shall become.  

I don't know what's in store for us and I guess, that's the wonder of it all... I've always loved surprises...

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Today is Saturday, August 20th

I know, I know... So, I'm a little errant... The last couple days have been work-filled and I've been preoccupied.  Thank you Di for that beautiful poem!  Hope to see you soon!

Tracy's neutraphil count went up to 1.5 yesterday from 1.3 the week before BUT he needed platelets for the first time in weeks... now just what does that mean?  T chooses not to talk about it and I brood.

So, today was the first time all week, I was able to sleep in.  Finished a book in bed and just zoned most of the day.  Been watching Mad Men and playing Moonlight Mahjong until the Niners - Raider game... GO NINERS!!!!  Niners just intercepted and we're ahead 3-0 at the end of the first half.  YAHOO!!!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Today is Wednesday, August 17th, Part 2

I'm trying to post lots of photos from the RYM/ Anniversary party... have to do it in segments....

Annie & Deb
Nancy, Steve's wife, Michael, Steve & me

Claudia & lots of folks

Jan & Tom

Photo happy Jan

so, that's all I've got so far... enjoy!!!

Today is Wednesday, August 17th

The last couple days have flown by.  I'm working on my website and been able to spend a lot more time on my business.  Life is good.  So, here are some photos from the RYM reunion party and a couple movies.

Carolyn, Deb & Den

Tracy & Me

Deb, Carolyn, T, Diana, Den
 More to come...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Today is Tuesday, August 16th

 I learned something last night that warms my soul...  couldn't sleep after Jon Stewart & the Colbert Report so, I began reading.  It was 1:30AM and I knew my alarm would go off at 7AM.  Had to get up for Carole Radoni at our 9AM Sales Meeting & another real estate ongoing educational class in the afternoon, so I needed to sleep... but those eyelids just weren't drooping.  Finally, I confronted what's always there on my mind...Tracy.  I rolled over as I turned off the light and cuddled in to T...  next thing I know I'm hearing my alarm as I'm trying to suss out a great name for a schooner... Seasavage...Seaworthy? and advising on a hat for the captain... as we dock ...

go figure... all I had to do was cuddle with my honey and my soul would finally rest....

Monday, August 15, 2011

Today is Monday, August 15th

I'm a happy girl...now all I have to do is learn how to load photos from my iPad onto the blog. Haven't got it yet. Hopefully, I'll get some more pics too from the party. Come on Diana & Gar...Let's see those photos!

Catch up day after showing property on the Westside yesterday ... Reconciling accounts, paying bills... T had a massage and then, Wii exercise... T beat me in 2 tennis matches...oh yah but at least we got some good volleys going. A little bowling & we were ready for a movie... Knight and Day...Cameron Diaz & Tom Cruise played at being super spies...kept me entertained but not a heavy weight for sure...BTW: my Wii age was 22 when I took my fitness test... How did that happen?

I am a Master of Distraction today!!!!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Today is Sunday, August 14th

OK I admit I've been remiss. It's tough sometimes for me to write what I'm feeling. I get lost in the depths and am reluctant to capture those thoughts... I try to always be positive but lately I've been having a hard time getting there. I have allowed what the doctors have said to seep into my outlook. Remember - Let Go and Let God.... Tracy is a FIGHTER!!! We will fight together and conquer this f__king disease.

Speaking of my honey...Tracy looks amazing!!! His color is great.. his hair is growing in and he doesn't look so gaunt. I was hoping to have some photos by now BUT NO ONE HAS SENT ANY!!! Come on folks!!! So, to catch you up...

We went to a truly awesome party yesterday. Gary & Deb celebrated their 12th wedding anniversary by throwing a bash complete with our own 70's RYM band! Ozzie, who used to play the B3 Leslie organ played keyboard, Warren, the Industrial Chicken Man drummer arrived from Salt Lake City and joined Byron on guitar & vocals, Tom on Bass and Gary on guitar & vocals. It was so great to meet up with so many old friends and dance & nosh (salmon, tri-tip, turkey sausages, & every salad & side under the sun)!!! I was even recruited to the stage to sing back up & tamborine on a couple numbers... must admit, it didn't take much coaxing. I haven't laughed like that in a long time it seems & my trophy? I've got a blister on my finger! Ha!

I can't thank the Whitnicks enough for opening up their home and their hearts to all of us... Tracy hung in there and totally enjoyed being there tho' he rejected playing his bass. I was ecstatic that he ignored my admonition re no hugs or kisses (cause his counts are so low)... he enjoyed the attention and the love and he deserved all of it! He's my hero!

Hopefully, I'll have some photos over the next week... everyone had cameras so, here's hoping.. Love to all... enjoy the full moon!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Today is Wednesday, August 10th

The McAnelli's are settling into a routine... a normal day where we end up together at some point hopefully, playing some Wii, sharing a walk, a shower, a movie, a cooking show and dinner. I've been praying for normalcy and we've fallen back into it... of course there's always the elephant in the room, but we're learning how to talk around it and mostly ignore it. Let go and let God is a constant mantra. I believe Tracy is slowly but surely returning to the land of the living. All the little things we take for granted, he's accepting and doing. The blower on the living room fireplace was making a horrid racket. T did what he would have normally done a year ago: he figured it out! He took it apart and will go get the part he needs to fix it...Wow!!! One short month ago, that would have been impossible. That's huge improvement & that's getting back to living a normal life for T and acknowledging his strengths. His hair is coming in too! A full head of salt & pepper hair...just a shadow but soon to be... so like our lives. We creep slowly back into being...living...accepting...and challenging???

Life for the McAnelli's is about being in the present... Never truly knew what that meant before. We're here today... acknowledge the past, relish the present and hope for the future... A spontaneous evolving life together...the Warrior McAnelli's.

Caught the last 45 minutes of Barbra Streisand at the Village Vanguard crooning & kibitzing to 125 of her people (including Bill Clinton) on PBS Mon. night. Here's hoping they replay it so we can see the whole performance. It brought back our vivid very early together memory of staying up all night outside a Towers record shop to buy the maximum amount of tickets = 6 each of us ( Tracy, Cenz & I plus Max & Spec, our body guards, non ticket buying participants ) could purchase to see Barbra Streisand at the Shark tank. Selling 2 in the parking lot for $1000 each (we'd paid $375 each for the tickets) and then, trading 2 for the down payment on my Blazer. That was very early in our relationship and music became a bond. That performance was one of a lifetime. Cenz & I harmonized with each other and Barbra, loving every minute... Wow!!! I'm hoping we get to go to Kuumbwa sometime soon. That will take T's counts being higher and the ability to stay awake for a 7:00 show; (and rejoining Kuumbwa) but we're looking forward and in the interim, enjoying every music performance on TV that we can... and loving it!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Today is Sunday, August 7th

This was a wonderful weekend! Tracy & I strolled around the neighborhood...I'm pleasantly surprised that T has increased the extent of his walking by several blocks! We enjoyed the sun, Riley's enthusiasm and greeted some neighbors. Saturday was a lazy day which culminated with a wonderful visit to Tuscany & dinner with Linda & Jim. I really don't know what we'd do without the love and support of our friends... It was their 19th anniversary and we were able to celebrate with them.

Today I finally figured my way through the mess I'd made of my Quicken records. Somehow, after I had upgraded the software from the 2003 version to Quicken Essentials 2010 back in March; I'd gone back to using the old version. Perhaps it was familiarity or just being preoccupied but the damage was done. I didn't realize my error until last week. That meant I'd been working in the old 2003 data file since March. The new version wouldn't allow me to export the 2003 data file again (you can only do it once & I'd already done it back in Mar.). I thought I'd either have to manually add about 15 pages of transactions or buy another copy. Ai yi yi!!! Before I made either nasty choice, I thought I'd try emailing the Quicken support team and lo and behold... they had an easy solution!!! It's done and I'm a happy girl. Next step: delete the old versions so it doesn't happen again!!!

Tracy annihilated me in tennis on the Wii today after I exercised and did the first 3 steps on my new Zumba Wii... Thank you Gary & Deanna!!! I've decided the only way to cope with the drama is to work, dance/ exercise, eat healthy foods and juice... with the love and support of our friends. Thank you for your patience. I find myself staring off into space and not wanting to talk... I'm the master of distraction yet again and it's working for me right now.

Looking forward but treasuring the present... that's all we ever really have....

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Today is Friday, August 5

Ready or not, Friday would have her due. I fretted about what to wear, how my hair wouldn't cooperate and finally, I came downstairs to scrambled eggs & coffee that Tracy had prepared. My honey put his nervous tension to work and we began our day together.

Rio Del Mar had been engulfed in fog but as we crested the hill, the temperature rose and the sun greeted us. What a wonderful surprise! Milpitas was first stop. T took photos of the exterior while I went inside and saw Ed & Zahra & met Ben, 13 months old today. He's sooo cute! Their home is ready to go whenever their new home is complete. We discussed putting their home on the market while they're in it and I'll do some research in order to determine what's best. Showings would be tough with a baby & dog and it all depends on how quickly that market moves.

So, perfect timing; we left for Stanford. Since we're not familiar with the new fly overs for 237; I entered Stanford into the GPS. There were 5 entries and I randomly chose one. My mistake. It sent us, contrary to my intuition, across town to El Camino Hospital (there's a Lucille Packard wing apparently). So, luckily, we had time and arrived on time for T's labs.

It was interesting and welcoming, since we hadn't been there for quite awhile. We greeted nurses we knew and T was easily taken care of. On to Bruno's clinic and they also were almost punctual. The Resident came in first... never did catch her name. She did her work up and I asked some pointed questions which she deferred to Bruno. I was slightly surprised & a little worried when Bruno, Janell & the resident entered. Bruno reiterated a few questions about T's status and then, began to dissemble... they really don't know what to do about T. We saw more of a humanity in Bruno's persona. T hasn't reacted as textbook to all the chemo. He has been more sensitive and had severe reactions and taken much longer to recover. It's been frustrating for the medical team and frightening for us. Reality is T's neutraphil counts aren't high enough for him to tolerate chemo right now. Bruno actually said that given what we know now, he probably wouldn't have been so forceful with treatment- possibly a gentler dosage would have been warranted and tolerated much more easily by T. Hindsight is 20/20 but then, who knows if T would have had the same result? It's science after all and we're all human. Anyway, Bruno posed the fact that even when T's counts recover and he's able to tolerate the chemo; T may be unwilling to put himself through that horror again. The fact is the outcome is also unclear at this point... He could go through all the pain and suffering again and ultimately, NOT be cured, remains part of the equation. I think we were both dumbfounded. I had to ask Bruno to repeat his explanation again because I didn't get it. He said that the fact that T had had more sensitivity and longer recovery times, probably applied to the leukemic cells also...but there was no way to be sure. In short, T has a lot of thinking to do. We have another appointment on Sept. 2nd to see where T's counts are and whether he's willing to undergo the next phase. That phase typically takes 2 months but Bruno says T would probably take 4-5 months and would be just as severe. So, it could potentially kill him if T's body has been ravaged too severely. Bruno also said there could be a chemo light version that Bruno would devise and that could do the trick. It's all a mystery... what to do? I asked Bruno what he would do? He said he didn't know. T has time and must build back up so, we'll see. We emerged from the clinic, slightly bruised and in a fog. While we were scheduling the next appointment, Janell suggested that T have his PICC line removed. Since it's one more way to get an infection and wasn't needed for awhile; why not remove it? After 24 hours, T would be able to take a bath or take a swim without fear of deadly infection. So, we went back up to the ITA and had his PICC line removed...if T elects to continue treatment, a PICC line will be needed again and easily re-introduced.

We found our way back off campus, missing the Subway turn.... I admit I was in a fog... Jayne assisted in finding the Cupertino Subway closest to the Apple campus and we stopped for lunch. T wanted his All Meat Combo with a rootbeer. Then, Jayne assisted me in the choice & my purchase of the adorable wireless keyboard for my iPad at the Apple store. There was a portable, fold up version that T pointed out could easily collapse while I was typing in bed. What would I do without T's wise counsel? Oh yeah, T decided to come in to the campus store and I was so glad. The little normal everyday things that he's been denied, he's reclaiming. I do believe T is back into living as normally as he can in the interim. I believe his neutraphil count will recover and then, I will honor his choice to continue the treatment or not... It is T's choice and I will love and support him either way... that's all that I can do.

Please keep those loving supporting white light streaming beams incoming...

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Today is Thursday, August 4th

Yesterday would have been my Daddy's 98th birthday... he lived to 78 and there are times I can still hear him sing...  I'm feeling grateful and melancholy... I asked T what he wanted to do today and he just wanted to stay home.

It was a gorgeous day on the coast...one of the prettiest we've seen in awhile with the temperature perfect in the low 70's.  I met Marilyn for broker tour & a delicious sidewalk patio lunch at Kianti's downtown ...mmmm cheese bread & caesar salad.  Santa Cruz is such a great people watching town and it's great to share a day with a dear friend...

Stopped on the way home at Deluxe for Massimo ice cream for my honey... he loves the vanilla cloud over his annie banany bar.  We joined Linda & Jim in Tuscany before dinner and afterward took a wonderful stroll around the neighborhood... just we 3:  T, Riley & me...  I am so grateful for our special place in this world and the time we have to share.

Tomorrow is a big day... we've decided to let go and let God... we have no control and we're looking forward to T's greatest good.  I have a listing apt. in Milpitas first
 ( wonderful clients whom I sold a Cambrian home to several years ago.  Their intent was a 5-6 month remodel which won't be complete for 3-4 months yet; taking about 2.5 years total time.  They want advice on anything needed before we put it on the market.) Then, on to Bruno at Stanford.  We'll find out what's next in this crazy never ending drama...

Life is just a bowl of obbleyocky with a stuffamoyjin on the side...  or as Shar would say: "Life is all about how you handle Plan B"

Love & light to all...

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Today is Wednesday, August 3rd

I FOUND IT!!!  Would you believe my purse was tucked in the back of my desk drawer in the office??  I guess I put it there before I showed property... had too much time on my hands.  The relief is enormous... I haven't lost my mind entirely....

Monday & Tuesday went by in a blur.  T's white counts dropped to 1.3 from 1.5.  So, I'm back making veggie juices and balanced meals for my honey... lots of veggies... halibut with an artichoke for dinner this evening... build, build, build...  looking for T's highest good.

I'm finding it very difficult to read the paper or listen to the news... what is wrong with getting the right message out about our economy.  Medicare did NOT put us in this position.  Most of the populace has paid into the system over the course of their lives so, they would be taken care of when they retired.  The politicians don't care who they blame it on and they don't have to worry about health insurance for the rest of their lives.  So, it's an easy target...  Come on people, media get the facts straight!!!   How about getting rid of the oil subsidies and erasing the Bush tax cuts?

Now that makes sense!!!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Today is Sunday, July 31st

What a weekend!  Fri., Tracy & I enjoyed dinner at Severino's at the Seacliff Inn with Gar & Deb, Tom & Jan and Matt & Jeannette.  Great to share dinner & swap stories...

 Sat. we enjoyed a total change of scenery as we rode down the coast with Gary & Deanna to have lunch at Nepenthe in Big Sur.  We sat out on the patio as the fog finally started to lift and I loved the homemade split pea soup!!!  They even wrote the ingredients down for me without specific measurements... the first time for split pea soup that wasn't pureed -- delish!!!!

 We wandered through the fabulous art gallery across the road and sauntered back home to rest from our big day...  My honey is exhausted and you know what?  me too...

Glad to be back as I search through our house and have been calling people all day trying to figure out what I did with my navy blue leather purse.  I could have sworn I brought it into the house after showing property last Sat.  But I haven't used it since and it's gone missing.... Concentrate and find the elusive rascal....